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Since the demise of the Quid and the murder of Liaqat Ali, our motherland has been

experiencing recurring military coups, instable democracy, crippled economy, fragile

judiciary and social stagnation due to brain dead politicians, ear jammed bureaucracy,
egoistical feudal, religious war lords, profit oriented industrialists power hunger generals, and
illiterate masses.

Historic Perspective: Rulers in sub-continent introduced art, music, but not democracy.
The British introduced controlled democracy.

Politics of Conflict since 1947: 11 dissolved assemblies, 3 Martial Laws; making,

amending and abrogating 3 constitutions.

American Influence in the Politics of Pakistan: Security threat, economic need and
political incompetency have always made Pakistan subservient to US- which supported the

Role of Fragmented Opposition: Worked for personal interests instead of national


Personalization of Politics: Not manifestoes but personalities, family politics, No party


Peoples Reaction: Sick of dirty politics, they want decent just, and prosperous life.

Factors behind Political Instability: Illiteracy, corrupt politicians and bureaucracy,

weak judiciary, Generals, controlled Media.

Pragmatic Solutions: True democracy, strong Judiciary, free media, peoples

participation, Literacy, Development.

History of Political Crisis: Muslim Rulers and Hindu Rajas flourished art, literature,
and music but not democracy. The British introduced controlled democracy and strengthened
chosen people of elite class. Hamza Amir in his book Pakistan-an overdeveloped state has
revealed the fact that after independence, the governing class was highly educated, on the
pattern of the British mind set, while on the contrary the masses were miserably illiterate.
This huge gap created management crisis.

On 25th Oct. 1954, Governor General Ghulam Mohammad dissolved the first Constituent
Assembly, the president of Assembly Molvi Tameezudin challenged the action, and won
before the Sindh High Court. On the contrary, the Chief Justice of Federal Court, Justice
Munir declared that the Sindh high Court judgment limited the powers of governor General,
thus validated the action of dissolution under Doctrine of Nessity.
1956-58: First parliamentary constitution, abrogation of constitution and Martial Law.
On 8th October, 1958, General Ayub imposed Martial Law and ended the 1956
constitution. For the second time, Justice Munir favored Executive supremacy over the
Legislative. Only after the fall of Yahya Khan, the court repudiated this doctrine of necessity
in Asma Jeelani case.

1958-69: Ayubs Martial Law, Presidential System and 1962 constitution, making of
Muslim League (Conventional) system of basic democracies, media censorship, but also
better economic growth.

On July 4th 1977, General Zia ul Haq ended civilian rule, again the Supreme Court, in the
Nusrat Bhutto case, validated the military coup on the bases of necessity. More surprising,
the court explained that Zia had the powers to pass all necessary laws, including amendments
in the constitution 1973.

1970-77: Fascist civilian rule under Bhutto, agreed 73 constitutions, Bhutto tried to get rid
of military from politics but failed, the poor friendly regime but negative effects of
nationalization, Pakistan National Alliance (PNA) and movement against Bhutto derailed
democracy. Opposition invited Zia to take over.

1977-88: Zias martial law and ban on political activities, making of Majlase Shoora
(1982), 8th amendments with Powerful President non-party based election 1985, making of
pressure groups like MQM, Anjuman Sipahe Sahaba. Restricted women participation in

1988-99: The most corrupt regime of Benezir and dictatorial regime of Nawaz Sharif,
dissolution of assembly, rising poverty and decreasing peoples interest in politics.

On October 12th 1999, General Mushraf, seized power, issued Provisional

Constitutional Order No. 1 of 1999 barring any court making any order against the Chief
Executives Authority.

In Pakistan, the struggle for an independent judiciary is as long as struggle for democracy.
Persecution of Justice Sajjad during Ms Bhuttos tenure and then his sacking at the behest of
former Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif and then the suspension of CJ Iftikhar under General
Musharraf. No civilian or military ruler has ever respected the independence of judiciary in
Pakistan which, in turn, become an instrument in the hands of every military dictator in the
name of the Doctrine of Necessity.

Bureaucracys role in bringing democracy to its knees: The founder of Pakistan

Quaid-i-Azam Muhammad Ali Jinnah said on 25th March 1948 in his address to the civil
service officers at Chittagong:-

I know you are saddled with the old legacy, old mentality, old psychology. Make the people
feel that you are their servants and friends, maintain the highest standard of honor, integrity,
justice and fair play.

Farooq Laghari, another bureaucrat-turned-politician, was elected President on Nov 14, 1993
before being made to resign on Dec. 2, 1997, he expelled his own party, PPP Ms Benzir, and
was planning to send home another PM, Mian Nawaz Sharif who had become all-powerful.
Mohammad Rafiq Tarar was elected president on Jan 1 1998, remaining so till Jan 20, 2002.
Instead of making democracy work, Mian Nawaz Sharif went on rampage of sacking all
those he did not like. When he tried this with the COAS, Musharraf and his close aides threw
him out on Oct 8, 1999.

American Influence: Great powers have great designs Pakistan has resource rich area in
the north-west, people rich in the north-east. Pakistan is junction of South Asia, West Asia
and Central Asia. US interests in the regions to contain the Growing China, nuclear Iran,
terrorist Afghanistan, and to benefit from the market of India.

Security and Business are two main US interests in the region while Pakistan is playing a
from line role against terrorism. Therefore Pakistani governments, either military or civilian,
always sought green signal from Washington which supported dictators.

Role of Opposition: Opposition parties less worked for democracy and more for getting
into power-even with the support of undemocratic forces and illegal actions. Unfortunately,
political parties always managed to reduce the objectives of political movements downs to
one a point agendatoppling of the civil/military government. Instead of challenging the
status quo, the oppositional forces were more interested in the capturing state power to reap
the benefits for themselves. Consequently, every political movement that took the sacrifices
of many people turns out to no more than a change of faces at the top level with continuity in
social, economic and foreign policies of the country.

Role of Media: The civilian and military dictators curbed media which snubbed peoples
voice, nourished every type of corruption, kept the people ignorant and the judges weak.

Effective Measures to strengthen the System:

1. To create physical asset by educating the masses, proper allocating the land, credit,
Zakat and Usher ensuring cost effective provisions of basic needs. Improved
efficiency in the public and corporate sectors to provide rule of Law.
2. Independence of Judiciary will strengthen democracy, restore trust between Center
and Provinces, and facilitate quick dispensation of justice.
3. Depoliticizing of public departments to avoid unjust political pressures.
4. Peace inside and outside the borders will provide sufficient resources, skills and
opportunities to focus on the national prosperity.
5. Media will its magical power can unite the warring factions by minimizing the
differences through open debates.
6. Stable democratic system to work for welfare state.
7. Patriot intellectuals writing to bring harmony.
8. Accountability at all levels. Autonomy to the Provinces. Awakening of Islamic
9. It becomes the social responsibility of the educated middle class and the civil society
to protect.
10. All politicians must be on board as Pakistan steers itself towards genuine democracy
and away from terrorism and violence that has begun to take roots in society.
11. There is an urgent need for better networking and coordination among various
sections of society such as lawyers, journalists, human rights activist and students.
12. Unless the Pakistani state craft is conducted within constitutional parameters, Pakistan
will remain vulnerable to external threats.
13. To create a moderate system of values that accommodates different points of view,
not just religious but also ethnic linguistic and regional.
14. It must develop strategy for economic growth, poverty alleviation, and reduction of
interpersonal and interregional income disparities. It must allow the development of
institutions that would work independently of those who control politics.
15. The judiciary and the Election Commission are the two most important institutional
devices that need to be free of political influence. But institutions such as the SECP
and the State Bank also need to be set free.

Conclusion: We need to strengthen our political system and institutions, develop a

dynamic and sustainable growth, eradicate corruption, provide timely justice, enhance
employment, undertake steps for population control, seek consensus based political
solutions, and resolve ethnic, sectarian and religious fault lines.