Original Articles

The False Prophet – by Suleman Akhtar

Change we need, but not at the expense of sagacity. Change we need, but not through mere rhetoric rather sound understanding of state of affairs. Change cannot be even envisioned until unless touching upon the matter that who holds the reins of power in Pakistan.

“At that time many will turn away from the faith and will betray and hate each other, and many false prophets will appear and deceive many people…For false Christs and false prophets will appear and perform great signs and miracles to deceive even the elect – if that were possible. See, I have told you ahead of time” – (Matthew; 24, Olivet Discourse)

Call for the Messiahs is a noncurrent phenomenon that traces its roots to antiquity. Pages of most, if not all, mythologies are black with the narrations of those who possess this out-of-this-world might that can save the humanity from slipping into absolute destruction and Armageddon. ‘Longing for the savior’ is the main driving force that directs, performs and propagates embellished plays of heroes. As times are melting, the phenomenon has taken altogether a new shape that is less supernatural yet more far from the reality, in a nutshell. After all, reality belongs to different realm that is more bitter, more unendurable and does not translate dreams into happenings until endeavor for them.

Last three decades have brought recurring periods of turmoil to Pakistan. The dark times have not only taken their toll in the form of precious human lives, but also have paved the way for societal destruction. This has given way to emergence of a certain class of society that is affluent to an extent, equipped with formal education and apprehends present situation with a particular way. Owing to the persistent propaganda of security state, this class has opted for a reactionary approach that overshadows ground realities and insists upon rhetoric. A kind of illness that puts much emphasis on blaming the already set targets and evades introspection to the possible extent. Sovereignty hysteria and hollow dignity claptrap are obvious offshoots of this particular approach that, in the long run, reinforce the agenda of those who pull the strings from behind the curtains. Imran Khan, than a leader, is more of an archetype of this reactionary conceptualization.

As ‘details’ may have onerous effect on delicate proponents of this newly born creed, let’s quickly take the delight of what Imran Khan has to offer us.

“Corruption is endemic in our society because it flows from the top. A major reason for this is the centralization of authority in the hands of the top administration officials.” – (Page 10, The Manifesto of Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaaf)

These well crafted words encapsulate the ‘corruption ideology’ of Khan that is in total contradiction with how the edifice of society is woven. History is the witness to it that societal evils never flow from top to bottom but the other way round. Is corruption just a matter of bribery and financial irregularity, or an institution that casts dark shadows on each and every matter of our lives?  Isn’t Khan being morally and intellectually corrupt while laying aside the financial irregularities of generals and military beaurocracy and taking to the task only to handful of corrupt politicians who he claims hold much of the national wealth, despite for having been in power for less than half of our national age? As he opposes ‘centralization of authority’, here comes the solution to it.

“To reduce corruption and make the accountability process more credible, the PTI shall:

  • Revise the NAB ordinance to make NAB a completely independent body. The head of the NAB would be a person of unquestioned integrity, while other members would be from higher judiciary, retired civil servants, eminent lawyers and citizens with unblemished records..”
  • NAB shall function under the administrative control of Judicial Commission.”
  • Strengthen the role of Public Accounts Committees in monitoring government’s financial transactions.  (Page 10&11, The Manifesto of Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaaf)”

That is in gross contrast with the ‘decentralization of authority’ rhetoric to set up an autonomous body with unelected members of unquestioned integrity (sic) and that too with concentration of much authority. History is testament to that ombudsman experiment has never been proved successful in under developed and developing countries where economic inequality and social injustice are biggest source of, what they term as, corruption. India is most glaring example in this regard. What would be the scale to measure ‘integrity’ of those chosen for the privileged institution? Aren’t retired civil servants and ‘eminent lawyers’ part of that corrupt system under question? What are the sureties that favoritism wouldn’t be employed for formulating the Judicial Commission and likes of controversial Judges wouldn’t be appointed who don’t feel hesitated in revealing their political affiliations and for whose decisions to be implemented Khan seeks the help of Army? How would it be made possible that delegation of PAC does not send back from the gates of GHQ when investigating into the defense budget? Answers whither, or are we a part of just another La-La land?

When it comes to the socio-political structure of Pakistan, the knower know that civil-military imbalance is the single-most impediment in the way of getting the things normalized, and on top of that is etiology of terrorism malady afflicting our social structure. Not only that Khan keeps mum about the overwhelming role of Army in civil affairs rather buttresses its hegemonic agenda, but also terrorism gets seldom mentioned in his ‘fiery speeches’ and if it does then largely marked with erroneous conclusions. Even the repeated readings of thousands of words of PTI’s manifesto bring to fore that the word ‘terrorism’ has been used only once and that too as pathetically as it gets:

“The present campaign against terrorism runs the risk of polarizing the world and raising the specter of a clash of ideologies. The shortsighted policies of the present government have pitted the Army against our own people, creating a national crisis for the sake of petty political gains. The PTI rejects all forms of political and economic hegemony.” (Page 30,The Manifesto of Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaaf)”

Not only grossly flawed, but this is the most virulent hypothesis given the present circumstances – a disgrace to our own people who are bearing the brunt of nonsensical state policies. Aren’t the Shia Hazaras of Quetta our own people who are being persecuted, slaughtered and annihilated at the hands of state sponsored monsters? Aren’t the people of Parachinar our own people who are under siege and assault by those groups nourished by our state to gain some petty strategic depth in neighboring country? Aren’t the devotees of widely revered Sufis our own people whose blood is being spilt relentlessly for ages for being adherents of particular interpretation of religion? Aren’t Christians and Ahmadis our own people who have been made most vulnerable to physical and mental torment and being bedeviled on a daily basis? Aren’t respectable Pukhtuns and Balochis our own people whose villages and cities are being ravaged by custodians of our lands themselves? Why do the wings of mighty Khan get burnt and his might fade out while speaking of our real people? Why should we sit and talk with the blood-thirsty monsters when Khan vis-à-vis proposes and pledges prosecution for corrupt politicians?

Change we need, but not at the expense of sagacity. Change we need, but not through mere rhetoric rather sound understanding of state of affairs. Change cannot be even envisioned until unless touching upon the matter that who holds the reins of power in Pakistan. Peddling the narratives of those at the helm of affairs is hardly a wind of change but continuance of chronic imbecility we have been witnessing for ages. Cry of the hour is not to ‘feel good’ but to strive for good in right direction and for that to happen prerequisite is to distinguish fairyland from substantial world.

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  • superb again.. People need to understand the facts mentioned. Only through this way we would be able to make our life prosper and pakistan “republic”. Country is at the verge of catastrophical failure. Neither nawaz nor ik should be provided with a chance to play with our destiny… May zardari sahb have long life and long presidency.. Only ppp would be our real messiah ..

  • Wise words: Cry of the hour is not to ‘feel good’ but to strive for good in right direction and for that to happen prerequisite is to distinguish fairyland from substantial world.

  • Imran Khan embarrassed by Dr Aamir Liaquat Hussain in the National Assembly
    ISLAMABAD: Imran Khan, staunch opponent of President Gen Musharraf, faced embarrassment in the National Assembly on Tuesday when Dr Aamir Liaquat Hussain, state minister for religious affairs, reminded the house of the cricketer-turned-politician’s “illicit relations” with Sita White. Imran had made a speech critical of the government, but drew the state minister’s ire when he said that Aamir Liaquat held a degree from an institution that had been registered five years after he had been awarded the degree. “The state minister, sitting beside the prime minister, also got his PhD degree six months after doing his master’s,” Imran said. The prime minister was seen whispering to Aamir Liaquat, who immediately went to his seat to respond to the allegation on a point of personal explanation. “My educational competence will only be determined if they who doubt my qualification come face-to-face for a debate with me. But I assure the house that after the Hudood bill is passed, Sita White will also get justice,” the minister said, drawing a round of desk-thumping and laughter from treasury members. He said Imran Khan would have to explain the nature of his relations with Sita White. Imran wanted to respond and the opposition urged National Assembly Speaker Chaudhry Amir Hussain to allow him to do so, but the speaker asked Imran not to indulge in controversy. “If you level an allegation against someone, you will receive a response,” the speaker said. Earlier, Parliamentary Affairs Minister Dr Sher Afgan Niazi interrupted Imran Khan and said he would not have won an NA seat had “hidden hands” not supported him. “I challenge him to resign and contest a fresh election against me from Mianwali,” he said. Imran seized on the minister’s statement as an admission that the elections were rigged. “He has admitted that the elections were rigged. If I was elected by rigging, the treasury members were elected by rigging. The minister is accusing the president of rigging the elections,” Imran said. shahzad raza and mohammad imran

    30th August 2006, 00:21