Bubbling lava may burst

Asif Haroon Raja

Ali Baba is convicted by Supreme Court on charges of contemptof court but the gang of thieves under him boisterously says he is not aconvict and repose full confidence in him. Stock of the same chip, they have tocompulsorily protect their chief or else they all would be behind the bars.They are so engrossed in loot and plunder and in merry making that they areimpervious to insults heaped upon them for their immorality and shamelessness.They have got so deeply drenched in the pool of worldly pleasures that theyhave lost track of high morals, ethics and pristine values and have stoppeddifferentiating between right and wrong, between evil and virtue. Rather, theyprotect and upgrade the wrong doers and punish the honest and God fearingpersons. Make hay as long as the sun shines is the motto they are assiduouslyfollowing. To prolong the duration of sunshine, they remain more loyal than theking to the head honcho sitting in Presidency. Like primed up puppets, theydance to his tunes with gusto and are breaking all records of flattery andsycophancy merely to retain their seats. For them, Zardari is the most shrewdand clever man this Land of the Pure has seen. Having sucked the blood of the nation for over four yearslike leeches, they have grown greedier and hungrier and want to make best useof the available nine months to suck the last drop left in the body ofPakistan. The leading lights of the ruling clique are all set to fly abroadbefore the next elections and lead a luxury life in palatial abodes purchasedin advance. The whole lot of crooks is backing the convict only because he hadput his career and reputation at stake to save $60 million looted by hisbenefactor. Ali Baba is beholden to the string puller sitting in Presidencysince he had preferred him over other three aspirants, didn’t replace him andallowed him the distinction of longest serving PM in Pakistan’s chequeredpolitical history. He has paid back by refusing to initiate a letter to Swissauthorities to reopen money laundering cases pending against Zardari after theSC ruling on 16 December 2009 annulling infamous NRO. Gilani first went into appeal against judgment of 17-memberSC Bench under chief justice Ch Iftikhar and with the help of fake doctor BabarAwan managed to waste over two years. During this time, the government defangedNAB and got most of the pending corruption and criminal cases quashed with thehelp of friendly prosecutors. Honest officials were replaced by toadies. Whenthe appeal was turned down in January 2012, Gilani refused to abide by SCdirective on the plea that the President enjoyed immunity and writing a letteramounted to violating the constitution. Backed by his opportunist advocateAitzaz Ahsan, he stuck to his guns even when he was formally indicted oncharges of contempt of court and defiantly maintained that he was ready to sacrificehis post and go to jail but would not betray his patron. He kept loyalty to thePresident above the loyalty to the motherland, the constitution, his ownreputation and the people who elected him. Ultimately when the seven-memberbench after demonstrating extreme patience announced its verdict through ashort order on 26 April, instead of immediately resigning gracefully, he andhis cohorts started a vicious campaign against the higher judiciary. Expecting that the accused would be awarded six monthssentence and thus would pave the way for making him a political martyr, whenthe 30 seconds long sentence defeated their plan, they went on an offensiveagainst the judiciary insinuating that it has traditionally been biased andunfair towards PPP leaders. They deliberately provoked the judiciary andprepared grounds for a headlong clash between the parliament and judiciary.Continuing with the delaying tactics, Gilani pooh-poohed the SC ruling andrefused to step down on the plea that detailed judgment had yet to come andthat his case would be decided by the National Assembly Speaker and theElection Commission whether he stood disqualified or otherwise. Even after the issuance of detailed order on 8 May, whichleft no room for ambiguity, together with mounting pressure of the oppositioninside and outside the parliament, the PM and his gang have maintained theirtruculent stance essentially  because ofthe support of MQM, ANP and JUI-F. Gilani was found guilty, he standssentenced, convicted and disqualified. He should have honorably resigned but hedidn’t. But without an iota of shame, he accompanied by large numbers offreeloaders proceeded on an official visit to UK to give an impression that allwas well. Britain claiming to be the mother of parliamentary democracy incomplete disregard of norms of democracy heartily welcomed the convictedvisitor and heaped praises upon him. Cameron’s sole objective was to extractapproval over resumption of NATO supplies from the bumbling Gilani and hesucceeded to fox him. The apex court having done its job, it was up to the ElectionCommission (EC) and not the Speaker to dethrone Gilani. However, to the uttersurprise of the nation, the Speaker Fehmida Mirza who had performed admirablywell finally slipped and instead of forwarding the case to EC for final rulingruled that since the PM had not been disqualified by the SC, hence referral ofthe case to EC didn’t arise. Two petitions have been filed in the SC againstthe flawed ruling of the Speaker.          Public’s disappointment with ruling coalition of PPP-ANP-MQMand with PML-N putting up friendly opposition allowed space to Imran Khan ledTehrik-e-Insaf (TI) to emerge as a third force. Sick and tired of the debasedpoliticians who have taken turns to plunder the nation and given no relief tothe masses, the people see in Imran a refined politician and a better humanbeing who decries corrupt system in vogue. Till his historic address atMinar-e-Pakistan on October 30, 2011, he was not taken seriously. Lahore meetingcatapulted his political fortunes and Karachi gathering reinforced his positionin the political arena as a serious challenger to the two status quo lovingmainstream parties. His tsunami is building up and so is his popularity. As perlatest gallop polls, he is currently the most popular leader followed by NawazSharif. PML-N in particular has got alarmed since its forte in Punjab has beeneffectively breached by TI. Seen as a game-changer, high hopes have been pinned on him.He has attracted the liberals, the moderates, the conservatives and thefundamentalists and even the Baloch separatists as was evident from his highlysuccessful public meeting in Quetta. Liberals want him to discard thefundamentalists and get counted among the liberals for they see prosperity ofPakistan in liberal philosophy. The conservatives’ views are different. Theyargue that Pakistan has been ruled and ruined by secular leaders and stronglyfeel that the only way to salvage Pakistan from all its maladies is to govern itin accordance with Quran and Sunnah. The ones who hate him are status quolovers with skeletons in their cupboards. Demand for new provinces has been made out of selfishpolitical considerations and not to ease the administrative problems of theaffected people. Creation of Saraiki province in southern Punjab will certainlycut the political power of PML-N, which is already reeling under pressureexerted by TI in Punjab, but may also suit Pakistan’s detractors desiring toBalkanize Pakistan. PML-N has tried to minimize the damage by demandingcreation of Bahawalpur, Hazara and FATA provinces. In the wake of demand forMuhajir Suba, which smells of Jinnahpur conspiracy, Nawaz is asserting thatSindh will not be allowed to be divided at any cost. Amid the politically motivated power tussle, people continueto groan under the weight of extreme poverty, hunger, diseases, joblessness,insecurity. Their sufferings further accentuated by prolonged power outages andshortage of water in this sweltering heat have triggered violent protests. Lavahas begun to bubble and given this trend in the wake of incapacity of thegovernment to provide them any relief, it seems the swelling lava may soonerthan later burst and bring down the edifice of the elites. The writer is a retired Brig and a freelance columnist.Email:asifharoon7751@yahoo.com

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