Sunday, 19 October 2014

Political Ripples

Third month running, neither the optimistic scenario nor the pessimistic one has come to pass, however, current political power struggle in the country is anything but a stalemate. Government is following a simple policy line rather word “inaction”. Hawks in the Government ranks, in their sporadic outbursts, never miss an opportunity to antagonize the opponents. The obvious lack of imagination and haughtiness of the government ministers has already done enough to politically discredit PML (N). In a pigeon like approach, government is hoping that current wave of political
gatherings around the country will wither like Azadi March and Inqalabi Dharna. As lack of imagination may have it, this assertion lacks substance. It is the direct fall out of March/ Dharna that people have starting coming out. As a well thought out move, the leadership of PTI decided to cash in on the sentiments of people and began these mammoth Jalsas. If dots are connected, we are heading for an agitation movement in the country. Prime Minister is being stalked by GNG slogan. VIPs are already in discomfort because their undue perks and privileges are being questioned. In another big shift, previously indifferent educated lower middle class has also started taking interest in politics. Youth is already weary of stereotype politics which hurled this country in to wastelands of corruption, hereditary politics and incompetence. Social media has also offered a platform to youth to vent their feelings without a cut. These factors are snowballing the change in the country. Despite certain grey areas in decision making, credit must go to PTI and PAT for spearheading the drive for change.

PPP has made wise choice to flex their political muscle by sizeable gathering at Karachi. It served multiple purposes. Bilawal has been incarnate. PPP’s strength in Sindh has been reasserted through relatively weaker ground of Karachi. Probably this gathering was extremely necessary for PPP to stay politically relevant in political landscape. How much ground PPP has gained from this show of power, needs to be seen. The timing of this Jalsa was also important as PTI has already announced
the bid to hold their political pageants in Sindh in following month.  It was well planned and executed political move to reinvigorate their support in areas of strength. Something PML (N) failed to do in Punjab. Except Karachi, PTI has very weak presence in Sindh. PTI’s Larkana Jalsa next month will have far-reaching effects on the political balance in Sindh in particular and country in general.

Government’s inaction is being dubbed as a shrewd political posturing. How much political genius is dictating government’s political moves will unfold in due course.  The human side of the Prime Minister must be kept in mind. The sum total of his ego suggests that he might be infuriated by the GNG movement and might be cooking up a serious revenge on his own countrymen for not letting him ‘peacefully’ enjoy his third term. The sum total of his political acumen suggests that he might not budge from his stance of sticking to power ‘no matter what’. Combine the disastrous couplet of his ego and political wisdom, the emerging scenario is at best detrimental. Politics is synonymous to pragmatism. He could have traded some space for high moral ground. Would that, we someday have leadership at the helm which is capable of politics.    

It takes generations to shake the political settings. We are witnessing that golden transition in our age. Change is in the air. Status quo is in peril due to gaining inertia. PTI may be credited for flag-bearing the drive but it has to carry out some regrouping. It has to forego her addiction for fielding time tested flops of the yesteryears. If they have learnt anything from Javed Hashmi episode, they must avoid recruiting failed political ‘noteables’ when they march on Sindh next month. This habit has already cost PTI a great deal. Besides other relatively lesser chinks in their armour, they must protect their vulnerable Achilles Heel and weed out the wild undergrowth eating up on their party’s success. We have waited long and hard for change. And we must see a lasting change.







Saturday, 27 September 2014

Wave of Change and Uneasy Intelligentsia

Those who wrote editorials in newspapers have always been held in high esteem by every thinking mind. They are in different league. They are a notch above the rest. They have an opinion and they articulately share it. Growing up in a country where culture of reading was diminishing because the culture of writing had already deteriorated. These columnists were really the icons. Unfortunately, like all other noble vocations in this country, journalism has seen a decline. Plummeting quality of thought and questionable integrity of editorials due to 'inclinations' has taken away their true strength. Most of the columnists have blatantly chosen sides with political forces in the country.  
For the last couple of months, newspapers have been bombarded with editorials which focus mainly on two aspects. Firstly, the biased media coverage of two dharnas which is mainly a media wrangling issue. Secondly, they speculate on the script writers of dharnas and do not stop short of blaming the hidden hand of establishment for articulation of current situation. The scribes of the articles rightly bash biased TV/ media/ anchors for shaping public opinion. Likewise, they try to prove that there is only one villain in this country i.e. establishment and to be more precise military establishment. Well decency warrants that we must admit, everyone has an opinion which should be respected. Yet, we must run the issue  through furnace of intellectual rigor.

Pakistan has reached where we brought it as a nation. Each one of us and every single institution has to accept the share of blame. In editorials, our respected columnists take on only aforesaid issues, whereas, corruption in all institutions, poor governance, absence of political acumen, foreign involvement in our policy decisions, unconditional surrender to foreign powers’ demands and the list goes on, does appear to them to sit at the roots of our troubles which is not different from how media dupes this nation. It is biased and meant to serve some vested interest, as is the custom these days. Journalistic integrity is under scrutiny for right reasons.  

Current wave of political awareness among the commoners has broken inertia of status quo. Stereotyping in politics and in other fields is a thing of past now. Like all harbingers of status quo, it has perturbed our stereotype intelligentsia as well. It seems that intelligentsia is singing to the same tune as our nervous conventional political entities and other champions of status quo. They also seem too concerned about the changing canvas of the nation’s outlook. Select few read in this country and very few read editorials. It has been an easy medium to share or shape the opinions of those who could read English because they are the ones who really mattered. Things have changed. Now, every evening, most of the writers of editorials come on air and share their opinions with public. People can clearly see the bias, inclination, changing tone and tenure and vulnerabilities of these opinion makers. Typical status of Holy Cow to concerti of cognoscenti is no more.  Duping public is not that easy anymore and our intelligentsia is visibly upset about that. Consequently, the hatred and condescendence for the forerunners of change like Imran Khan and Tahir Ul Qadri is obvious in words and opinions of our intelligentsia.

Well, intelligentsia has a larger role than just shunning off the wave of change that also threatens the niche of status quo where they have been basking for over half a century. They must step ahead and put in their share to steer the ship of this country out of dire straits. They must correct
those dharna parties and render valuable advice to govt and establishment to mend their ways and apply corrections to their adopted strategies. Whether someone pays heed to it or not, journalistic responsibility warrants that thinking minds of opinion makers must continue the good work. They must not choose sides. It should not appear from their writings that they are on payroll of any stakeholder in the power matrix of this country. The nobility of this profession must not be tarnished.  

Saturday, 6 September 2014

Ten Points of Difference with Imran Khan’s PTI

There is a need to take stock of PTI’s approach to politics in the wake of Azadi March. There are many loose ends which warrant tidying up like vision, leadership, decision making, organization and performance. Time for PTI to face few facts:-

1.            Timing of Azadi March. Mere fourteen months in to the govt, PTI should have given time to the ruling party to commit more blunders. PML (N) leadership is prone to axing own feet e.g. Model Town massacre, ever expanding family business, nepotism, abuse of power through police and other institutions of the state.  It was a matter of time, ruling party, would have lost moral authority to rule the country. Rigging allegation was a potent tool to maintain requisite political pressure on the govt but all out Azadi March should have waited a little more.

2.            KPK Performance. Having formed govt in KPT, PTI needed to make a difference with her performance. There were few heartening indicators of good governance in KPK which needed to mature to create an impact. Secondly, PTI failed to promote her good work which it had done so far in KPK.

3.            Political Support.          IK has opted for solo political flight and appears to be politically isolated. Let alone parliamentary parties, Jamat-e-Islami, despite being his ally in the KPT govt, did support his political move. Although, Dr Qadri’s PAT is in direct support of Azadi March, yet it is not being recognized as a relevant political force. PAT is not part of parliament and partly for her peculiar theological undertone. Concerted effort must have gone in to muster sufficient political support before embarking upon an Azadi March of this scale. Indeed other political forces prefer to maintain status quo, still their political relevance should have not been disregarded. Extensive political maneuvering before Azadi March could have pacified synchronized opposition by govt and remaining political forces.

4.            Nexus with PAT
.           Aura of romance keeps us from realistic appraisal of consequences, naturally resulting in unhappy & untimely breakups. This is the story of love affair between PTI & PAT. Commonalities are few and far between like unison march to Islamabad and political support to each other’s agenda. However, destination of both is wide apart. PTI stands for fall of govt and re-election remaining within current political system. Whereas, PAT stands for complete makeover of the system. Suppose if PM resigns, PTI would want quick re-election but PAT will not be satisfied with this. In short, it seems that no real deliberation has gone in on end state of current political crisis by PTI & PAT. They seem content with dealing with things on issue to issue basis but there is a strong possibility that there will be serious consensus issue between these parties if things move to next level from current stalemate.

5.            Party Organization. Tremendous amount of work needed to be done on party organization of PTI. It is a GT Road and internet party. Except Karachi, PTI has zero representation in Sindh. Situation is no different in Balochistan. At least, couple of rigorous years were needed to establish the party where it was non-existent. Likewise, in Punjab and KPK, further strengthening of party roots was required. Even if elections are announced today, PTI will face serious problems like 2013 General Elections to nominate the candidates. Party is banking too much on personality and charisma of IK. This may yield short term political gains but philosophy of ‘Naya Pakistan’ may be laid to rest with IK’s exit from political scene.

6.            On Javed Hashmi episode and many other incidences, IK appeared to be stereotype political leader, who could not take no for an answer.  There might be hundred reasons for JH’s exodus but the handling of the issue was done in an apolitical fashion. He could have called core committee’s session and sent him off in a democratic way. Patience, tolerance to resistance within and outside party and political flexibility are much desired from political leadership at national level.

7.            IK has been equated with Quaid-e-Azam by some enthusiasts. Does not seem to be a fair parallel. Particularly, Quaid-e-Azam was a political genius who was a man of principles and great patience. Being a fast bowler, IK admitted himself that he lacked patience which is amplified by his untimely Azadi March. Few are reminded of Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto when they see huge crowds gathering on his call. Again, an unwarranted comparison. Political acumen of ZAB was much superior. Other pronounced difference was that when ZAB announced he was going to bring middle class to assemblies, he gave party tickets to lower middle class and lived by his word. Whereas, there are serious question marks on IK’s ticket distribution and credibility of his close aides.


PTI fielded young and energetic spokesperson
           media and talk shows like Murad Khan, Aysha Gulalai Wazir, Naz Baloch etc who lacked political depth and authority to fight party’s case. Senior leadership was also visible but most of the air time went to these young guns. A bold initiative which did not pay off.

9.            Conservative outlook of our society is a reality. This sensitivity must be respected. Female section of crowd doing Luddi and dance moves did not go down well. Opponents exploited this for political point scoring and non-political segment of society did not really endorse this. Albeit, the tendency has been curbed after initial few days.
10.     Lastly, the Maximalist approach of not calling off Azadi March without PM’s resignation is not convincing. Govt has a right of dillydallying. It is PTI, who has to play her cards wisely. Even if PTI is handed over the country now, it is presently not in a shape to run the affairs of the state. Unless there is reliable party structure in place down to grass root level, this type of demand will discredit PTI. Leadership of PTI needed few more years to fully mature. They had a golden opportunity to fix the nut bolts of their party while running affairs of KPK. Integrity is a priceless attribute, but it is not the only attribute necessary to run the affairs of a country. IK often refers to the welfare state of Medina but somehow it is felt that he did not carefully study the political acumen, vision and wisdom of the Leader (PBUH) and Chief Executive (PBUH) of that state.

Thursday, 4 September 2014

Poem: 'Roaring Lions' of The Parliament

What a spectacle, the high rhetoric at the Parliament
‘Roars of Lions’, we heard, coming out the Parliament

Hitherto, a derelict building, the ruin of democracy
Came to bloom, a sanctuary or refuge, this Parliament

Ka’aba they named it, mother they called it, when
Status quo felt danger, building which is Parliament

Champions of vested interests, business or family
Bravo Parliamentarians, have no other compliment

Buildings are sacred when men of honour grace them
Hide not behind this building, the house of Parliament

Inertia broken by tremors of change, has kindled hope
That this building, will soon become a real Parliament  

Asad Jamal, 4 September 14

Monday, 1 September 2014

Javed Hashmi- An Ego Slave 'Rebel'

Javed Hashmi’s resignation is prompted by his Ego. Since he was ignored in important decision making of the party, he could not take it. From deep inside PTI, it is being alleged that his role was extremely dubious in party ticket allocation before General Elections of 2013. This led to gulf between JH & IK which kept growing. Though, he was given due respect all the way.

His political career depicts anything but stability. PPP of ZAB, worker of IJT, JI of  Modudi, Minister of Zia ul Haq, leading figure of PML (N), joined PTI on condition of
 becoming president. His gamble of joining PTI did not pay off as PML (N), by hook or by crook, formed central govt. He could not hide emotional association with Nawaz Sharif during his first address to the parliament. It would be harsh to declare him a mole but he never made a conscious effort to dispel this impression.

First press conference of Javed Hashmi was act of resentment. However, once he was publically disowned by IK, he unleashed on PTI, IK, Army and even judiciary. It could not be termed anything other than an act of desperation. He has stepped up his allegations against Army and DG ISI in a bizarre way. His anger, dissatisfaction with his party and hurt ego, are all his personal problems. It does not give him a license to level baseless allegations against state institutions. His behavior has only dented the kind of public stature he claims to have. He is only being lauded by the ruling party whose own moral standing is under question.

Lastly, ruling party’s ardent desire to malign army has turned in to demonic obsession. They must thank army for issuing a one liner clarification on issue of mediation. Army is showing unprecedented patience and restrain with govt without due acknowledgement and reciprocation. Like past few months, ministers of govt in their private talks, do not hesitate in blaming army for their woes. We have seen few glimpses of their private talks at public forums as well. As the adage goes, a bad workman blames his tools. Govt is not ready to apply few corrections in her approach to issues rather continues to fix blame on ‘hidden hands’ for her own mishandling, high-handedness, inflexible posturing and lack of political wisdom..
Outcome of current political crisis hangs in balance. But it must be said that whole issue is not dealt with properly. Politicians failed to play politics. Parliament remained hostage to forerunners of status quo. They continued to hide behind ‘mandate’ notwithstanding the fact that those who are out on streets do not accept the validity of this mandate. Unless legitimacy of this mandate is established, it will be difficult to rule this country henceforth. Even if govt survives current political typhoon, it will remain a weak govt.

Tuesday, 26 August 2014

Story of a Tax Payer… Another Triumph of Status Quo

Few years back in Faisalabad, when Ali took over business from his father, he decided to pay all payable tax. He asked his staff to prepare proper tax return. The tax amounted to half a million as compared to fifty thousand in past ie ten times more. He was advised to maintain status quo which meant paying small tax and continue paying ‘fair share’ to tax authorities. But he insisted on paying the exact amount. When tax authorities were approached, they again asked for their share. The company told them that there was no tax evasion and they are voluntarily paying the true amount. Taxers began to tax Ali’s patience and made his life miserable. It took his company unbelievable amount of time and effort to pay the exact tax. If he continued to pay the full tax, tax authorities could have been deprived of their share, hence, they brought him to his knees. Finally, the young entrepreneur gave in and agreed to pay tax the old way. However, for next financial year, tax authorities doubled the amount of their share because ‘lot of effort had gone in convincing him to pay the old way’.

Ali is, now, Masha Allah, a successful entrepreneur in Canada.

We must accept the reality that a great number of people in this country are fed up with Status Quo. That is the reason their frustration is not limited to drawing room whining, they are out of their comfort zones and out on roads. No more qualms about people not standing up for their rights. Mostly, young, aware and faithful Pakistanis have rallied under the umbrella of PTI to break the status quo. The inertia has broken. But beware of the old ‘crocs’, who have buckled up to save the status quo under the garb of constitution and laws. The book of laws which these lawmakers have made to protect their interests like centralized control of resources, like becoming third time Prime Minister of the country, like immunity to the high office holders and so on. Ostensibly, the book contains all the good things and assurances for welfare and security to the people of Pakistan. However, only welfare and security to the people of Pakistan is missing. Well, it is just a book of clauses tailored by lawmakers to suit their design of play. Generation after generation, their hegemony on resources of this country and regime of organized corruption is preserved. Why can’t it be changed? But for that we need to emplace correct set of lawmakers.

Growing up in a country where politics used by synonymous to corruption, I always felt sorry for people attending political rallies. A political rally never appeared to a sign of hope rather a directionless mob pursuing pointless agenda. Always wondered why these people are wasting their time and energies on perpetuation of status quo. But now it feels different. The attendants of Azadi March and Dharna come across as hope for change. Naïve to impediments of red tape and frugal laws, people have stood up for change. Be warned, if we fail to grab on to the opportunity for change offered to us by the circumstances, our future generations will never forgive us.

Yet, it is sad to note that justice is a luxury in our country. Like other luxuries of life it is accessible to select few who can afford other luxuries of life. Since most the people are living without basic necessities of life, hence, they are not afforded the luxury of justice as well. As the cliché goes, ‘Justice delayed is justice denied’. If FIR on cold blooded death of fourteen Muslim Pakistanis could not be registered in third month running, then judiciary and executive are just serving the political interests of the govt. No wonder Tahir ul Qadri was crying like a baby for poor and helpless of this country. However, like, Ali, the poor and downtrodden also have a better place to go…Heaven J

Monday, 21 July 2014

Matrix of Disappointments…My Best Teacher

Nothing inspires human heart as much as the Truth. I have tried in my best reckoning to put together some truth and ask you to read this passage with the lenses of you Heart. Truth of this life of fleeting attachments, deceptive temptations and foul it is a Matrix of Disappointments. Unless you realize... that.... All attachments are fleeting away may it be the love of your life, closest relations, friends, pets n so on...either you will leave them one day or they will be taken out of your life leaving you with hurt and emotional pain. Try and understand that an attachment in love with a person or thing which has to perish and leave you with pain is basically an illusion. Love must not leave you in Pain. How can true love walk out on you ever?

Temptations are ever so deceptive...our passion for sins...may it be sin of curiosity, original sin or not so original is an unending, un-satiating pursuit of a Mirage but we never seem to get enough of it. Every temptation leads to a sin and every sin adds to the skyscraper of Regret and Remorse.

Finally, the misunderstood concept of Love which rots like a hidden dead rat and we never really find out what is wrong there. Understand that human heart is as vast as an ocean. Default mechanism of human heart is not designed to accommodate love of anything of this world. Filling your heart with love of Dunya is like filling the space of an ocean with a drop of water. And then we complain of emptiness and sadness. We have tried to invent ways to remedy this by playing video games, eating outs, smoking weed, taking hallucinogens, drinking, clubbing, listening to mind numbing music and throwing up all day next day …but… the moment our minds regain full consciousness…that sadness intensifies and that emptiness deepens. Instead of relief, our remedy back fires and continues to eat up on us. It is like taking cancer inducing drug for migraine. How absurd? Car makers issue manual which we look up for troubleshooting. Likewise, our Creator has issued a Manual to treat all our spiritual, moral, social and physical imperfections. And who knows the creation better than the Creator? Back to human heart, this pumping device is the only divine piece of equipment in human make up. It only is designed for love of Allah. Once this ocean is filled with its true waters, the droplet of Dunya's love will find its place there somewhere.

We continue to fail to understand the real face of these attachments, temptations and love of Dunya and remain sucked up in Matrix of Disappointments. Our only logical attachment is with Allah who created our souls on one day. We never really bother to look back in time that we had an oath of allegiance with Allah before coming to this world who puffed His soul in a clot of blood in a womb. He thus became our only relation before coming to this world. Protected, guided and made real nice arrangements for us as we arrived helpless in this world. Couple parents, nice shelter, siblings, appointed guardian angels on us, provided us with food all these years, carried us through times when we thought that even our shadows left us. He has already arranged food and shelter till our last day on earth. Can you find such unconditional love in this world in any relation or thing to which you feel attached to? Could there be any better attachment than the attachment with Allah? A premanent attachment without any fear of detachment ever. He is The Greatest, He is the most Merciful. Among these countless blessings He gave us Freewill. Our own wish and will to go about life. Remember, Devil incites your temptation, but it is you who decides to tread the sinful path. Life is just a little test to resist our temptations for a very short time and reward is promised in eternal peace and Jannah. But we thought this world is Jannah. All the pleasure, all the joy must come our way fast and now. And we cross the line. Commit sins. We fall prey to the trap. Just like a fly which ends up in a cobweb for her love of untamed curiosity. If this Dunya was to become Jannah then the whole issue of creation becomes pointless. In which case what would be the point of holding Jannah in store for us? We stuff our heart with love of Dunya and sink deeper in to the quagmire of sins. Not paying heed to repeated reminders in Quran about the worthlessness of love of this Dunya. Just like our loving mothers who repeatedly tells us to wear warm clothing so that we do not catch cold, He keeps warning us in Quran one and the same thing again and again. Is there a better example of love in this world than that of a mother. Well ! put together love of seventy mothers and counting...He still loves you more.


Do you still want to fill your heart with love of Dunya? Will you continue the futile toil of filling an ocean with a drop? Are you still willing to trade an ocean of love with a worthless droplet? If so, then you would not escape that haunting emptiness of your heart.

Today all the jigsaw pieces of my journey have been put together in front of you in the shape of whole truth. I am sure even if we persist to maintain the apparent state of denial; our hearts are always attracted to truth. Today the speaker was my heart and the audience...your heart. My tumultuous journey of disappointments is aligning to a steady route and attaining a tranquil pace. The voids are filling up with Love. All my fears were derivatives of my desires. But now they float between hopes and fears. I feared that time was running out and always questioned, Have I Gained Enough? My fear remains the same i.e. the time is slipping through but the fear has taken a different face i.e. Have I Given Enough? Have I been able to payback? Have I contributed my bit to life. But these words give me hope that they will tingle your heart. They will leave a little mark. You will share these thoughts with someone else. Light of hope will kindle in few other hearts weary of emptiness. We all shall then continue our eternal journey to our eternal destination. To a place, where our Host will be Allah Himself. He will throw feasts to His Loved ones. He will even serve drinks to His Chosen ones. I may not be among those but from among the lowest of the crowd I may get His glimpse. A look of the One who created all the that we perceive as Beautiful. The One who taught our perceptions to perceive Beauty. Should I not trade all these fleeting attachments, those deceptive temptations and love of Dunya for that permanent attachment, absolute truth and real love?

Only Allah knows what is right.

Share your thoughts on my sketchy and obscure thoughts and stay blessed.

Saturday, 21 June 2014

Days of PML(N) Govt are Counted?

Carnage at Model Town Lahore augurs beginning of the end. 3500 police personnel poured in to remove the ‘barriers’. Killed innocent people and brutally battered everyone present on spot. Ironically, registered murder FIR against Tahir ul Qadri’s son. Ministers of the state were exuding fire just like loyal Haman. Pharoses must have felt small on display of arrogance by our rulers.

In Punjab, every constituency is filled with Gulloo Butts. They are the real Ugly face of our rulers. These field agents work on behest of sitting MNAs and MPAs. They are well connected in 
administration and judiciary. Most of these run gambling hubs while others do drugs and bootlegging. They have gangsters on their payroll who can make life of any person miserable. Every citizen is bound to have issues pertaining administration and judiciary. This is where ordinary citizens need help of these goons who resove their petty issues from the back of their hands under the able patronage of respected politicians. Hence guarnteeing votes for their masters. In central Punjab, if your buffalo is stolen or your brand new car is nicked, go to the Dera of MPA which act as a "Facilitation Centers". Distressed people not only pay money but leave those places highly obliged after paying money for their stolen goodies. Hence, without coming to fore, politicians control their constituencies. Difference between Punjab and Karachi politics is only that MQM has organized setup and central control on criminal activities whereas Punjabi politicians do the same from behind the curtain.
The best lesson from known history is to fight one front at a time. Present govt has concurrently opened up many fronts. Cold war with army on Pervez Musharraf issue is going on. There may not be any love lost for Pervez Musharraf. But mere fact that he was COAS, gives him certain privileges. Army is an institution built on brotherhood. Army will not abandon him. If they did not like him, they should have stood up to him when he was in power. But vendetta and egos are way too large than the size of men. It was a golden opportunity to let go off Pervez Musharraf once his mother was seriously ill. It would have been a win win decision. Even letting him go after Sindh High Court’s decision to remove his name from ECL would have earned tons of good faith. Instead central govt challenged the decision in Supreme Court. Notwithstanding the fact that Mr Nawaz Sharif was allowed to flee from the country under a written agreement once he was convicted. Wonder, who are their advisors? Are those advisors sincere? Is govt going to commit suicidal on itself?

Other front is on going operation in Waziristan. In 13 months, it was only for 48 hours that nation seemed to rally behind the govt when it announced commencement of operation in Waziristan. After those 48 hours, govt sent suicidal mission of Punjab Poliice on Qadria at Model Town Lahore and the tide completely turned. Again the question on advisors of govt arises with full force. Although, there are serious reservations, whether govt willingly went ahead with the operation or it was forced to do so. Particularly, when announcement of operation came 24 hours earlier through ISPR than the govt itself.

Another front is the media bias of govt. Govt’s unflinching love for Geo and Jang Group is evident with punishment awarded to ARY to balance the charge sheet. Govt had to take entire media along. But this requires transparency and unbiased approach which is not possible with these people. Media will naturally unleash on govt and their image will further go down the drain. Prime Minister went to see Hamid Mir in hospital but he did not bother to pay visit to affected of Model Town incident. Had he visited Qadria in first couple of days of the incident, it would have taken the sting out of situation besides fulfilling his moral obligation it would have had political advantage. But the question remains, who are their advisors?

Corruption is rampant. Govt continues to appoint her stooges on every office of significance. All money producing institutions/ projects are controlled by the Royal Family. Recent appointment of Arsalan Iftikhar as Vice Chairman of Investment Board of Balochistan says it all. Unfortunately, Mian Sahab could not get a Durbari Army Chief in all three tenures. May it be General Abdul Waheed Kakar, Mirza Asalm Beg, Jehangir Karamat, Pervez Musharraf or Rahil Sharif. He appoints an army general (at times violating army’s merit) thinking he will find a humble servant in him but hats off to army’s grooming, each time a bona fide patriotic Pakistani turns up. Present chief is no exception who has already bitterly Disappointed the ruling Clan.

All these above incidents and scenarios are pointing towards end of the road for Nawaz Sharif. He will be the only PM in history who made it thrice and thrice could not complete his tenure. Writing is on the wall. Signs are evident. Blood has been spilt. We cannot expect Nawaz Sharif and Co to change their way of thinking. Which inevitably means early exodus. I really wonder who are their advisors

Sunday, 8 June 2014

Karachi Airport Attack- Winners & Losers

It was amazing and to see victory speeches by few govt officials ...when...
19 ASF, Police & Rangers individuals killed, scores injured, valuable property damaged, tremors of terror felt across the country, loss of millions of Ruppees, possibility of discontinuation of international operations at Kci airport and incredibly still (by mid-day Monday) firing can be heard at Kci Airport. They accomplished their mission. Victory speech may come from their side.
Read the letter place opposite. It shall give you a fair idea of how well crafted was the whole affair. Validation of the authenticity of this letter is beyond the capacity of scribe as it was copy pasted from the status of a friend at facebook. However, it is not really difficult to ascertain from the language of the letter that such tenacity can only be attributed to TTP.

Our achievement is that we killed 10 terrorists who otherwise came to DIE. secondly, DNA test will be taken of all Terrorist...What a gang of losers who run the affairs of this country.
Few Laspses that need to be considered:
1.All security agencies who were responsible to provide advanve information on terrorists' planning stage of operation, miserably failed. Everyone in chain particularly those responsible for airport area to be held accountable.
2.ASF which is solely responsible for airport security must be taken to task.
3.Police thana of airport is equally responsible. Because terrorist became security lapse of ASF when they entered airport premises. Before that it was police who had to prevent it from happening.
4. Provincial Govt was too busy visiting dharnas of MQM.They are also accountable for this lapse. 5.Finally sir Interior Minister it was your primary responsibility to prevent such thing from happening.
Unless all these culprits are taken to task... Nothing will change. These people are responsible for loss of so many precious human lives. There has to be an end to this circus. It about time people responsible for such lapses up and down the ladder must feel the heat.
Still someone wants to celebrate victory and raise solgans...Go on keep fooling yourself and 200 million people

Sunday, 1 June 2014

Moral Compass - Made in China

Moral Compass - Made in China (the amusing line taken from the Robin Iqbal's status)
If you happen to use a compass, irrespective of the weather conditions, the time of the day or the day of the week, the needle of the compass shall always point to the North. Likewise, you must have observed that political workers regardless of their standing, appointment or stature will be biased towards their political leadership. Principles of morality stand no chance once they have to choose between their political leadership and what is right. The point of North on their moral compass always indicates towards their political leadership. Those who do not fulfill their moral obligation of raising a hand and differing on principles are hostage to their own short term gains and objectives. Which mostly are trivial in nature like hopes to get better position in party or winning better NHA contracts or any other mundane benefit that you can think of. In turn, entire nation is paying the price. How? Ok. Now, if you are a political worker who cannot stand on principles please stop reading this article because its very bitter in taste.
Dog is a fovoured pet of Men of Ego or should we say 'False Ego'. Have you ever Wondered, why? Because Dog is a psychophicist. A flatterer who will go off limits to please his master. you must have seen a dog waging his tail like crazy to appease his master. A dog will not judge you for your character or principles. He only wants to make you happy. What is his gain? A pat in the back, shelter and better food. That is the sole reason, of all animals, dogs are not allowed in the house as pets. They inflate your ego. They make you want to believe that you the Master and the Provider. How false is that?
Political Leadership is surrounded by few loyals. Likewise, down the ladder leadership at different tiers is restricted to a close circle of faithfuls. Once they hit the jackpot i.e. win elections, they start payback by affording each other benefits. It is common perception that politicians are the most corrupt lot. But in reality, its the political worker who leaves his leadership miles behind when it comes to corruption. He never disagrees. He never differs on principles. He does all he can to please his leadership. Absence of principles, lack of character or nonexistent political wisdom never really bothers him. His Moral Compass always indicates towards his political leaders, believing they are the Providers and making them believe that they are the Masters.
I hope you are not drawing any parallels between pets and political workers in your mind? Well political workers are much above that. And by their conduct they have to do better than what they are doing. They have to prove that they are the best of creations. They have to rise above their short term gains. They have raise their hands and differ. They have to speak the Truth. If they continue to paint the false picture that Sab Acha Hai i.e All is Well, their masters will want to live in the fallacy that they are doing just great. They have to realize that their job is more important because in their hands rests the future of this nation. The moral compass must point to the principle, to Pakistan, to greater interest, to our future, to the future of our generations.
As indicated by my old friend Amir Sohail Malik, it holds good to all those working in govt institutions. No department, institution or walk of life is exempted from this obligation. We must stop importing our moral compasses from China because a Moral Compass Made in China will only take a nation to where we stand today.

Qadri, Imran and Change in Pakistan

Mr Tahir Ul Qadri has put his claims to "Flip the Paradigm and Shake the Status Quo" in serious jeopardy by sitting Ch Pervez Elahi on one side and Ch Shujaat Hussain on the other. This is not a superstition but a proven reality of our politics that Ch bros are the epitome of Insincerity in Pak Politics. Tahir ul Qadri may be a great religious scholar, an authority on Hadith and an unmatched orator, but Politics does not seem to be his cup of Tea. In his early attempt to roll over the SYSTEM, he was Duped by MQM and this time Q League ( for whom “The Opportunists” is an understatement) have jumped the Qadri Bandwagon, just to remain politically relevant.
The other Champion of Change, Imran Khan…once again…is dragging feet from joining Tahir Ul Qadri… and …once again it would be a mistake and definitely will add to his political blunders…one can also feel for him because on his one side sits Javed Hashmi ( An old PML N Horse) and on his other side sits Shah Mahmood Qureshi ( A PPPP veteran)...They could neither affect change in their parent political parties nor is there any hope in PTI...They will always advice IK on playing Safe...Change will not come through ‘Proper Channel’ Politics…Hold an election next month and it will be hijacked again…As they say…Desperate times call for desperate measures…playing by the book will bring no change in this system…which eats, breathes and broods Corruption…Again IK is not good enough for Shenanigans of Pakistani Politics… plus his cautious approach to politics is not doing him any good.
Few words in the honour of our political prodigees...Prince Hamza, bilawal, Monis, Musa etc and Princess Mariam, Bakhtawar , Asifa….You all are signs of HOPE for your families…But for Poor thing called Pakistan, You are part of the problem, not the solution.
And this brings us to the bottom line…For Tahir Ul Qadri and IK not being good enough for Pakistani Politics…is actually our only HOPE…because they failed to Adapt to corrupt methods of Raj Neeti…Their approach to politics is not through the Dirty Door...We should not Fail them before putting them to Test...Only If they join hands, They may finally bring some constructive change in this country… But…Somehow…Both of them have not been able to take that 'Leap of Faith' ...IK's inability to think out of box and taking 'Political Risk' by trusting Qadri is the real impediment to substantive change. Their nexus can pave the way for a better Pakistan

Leadership is not only about celebrity status rather taking bold decisions (with inherent risk factor )and the dream of change will be realized through some daring decision making and due sacrifices.
Blessed Sunday

Saturday, 15 February 2014

Talks with TTP and Post US Scenario

Under growing pressure from right wing mindset in the country and changing security environments in the region; ostensibly, negotiations with TTP seems to be the most viable option for the govt. Having exhausted option of negotiations, hopefully, there will be no looking back. This will help mute right wing Islamic parties and PTI. Both Govt and TTP have already nominated negotiation teams, however, growing rhetoric on implementation of Shariah in the country and unrealistic demands put forward by TTP, rouse insincerity of approach to current parleys, which may end without constructive conclusion. Specially, attack on police personnel in Karachi on 14 February 14, should be enough indicator for hopefuls of negotiations to wake up and smell the coffee. Suddenly, Fazullah is being dubbed as Amir ul Momineen. The writing is on the wall, ‘Talks with Taliban is a waste of time’, and the time wasted in talks will only favour TTP. Past experience favours distrust on TTP, as they always used negotiations to gain time for regrouping, strengthening foothold in settled areas, mobilising support of right wing and averting possible full scale military operation against them. Presently, the only thing that makes TTP vulnerable is possibility of redundancy due to proposed US exit by the end of the year. Anti-Pakistan elements may curb TTP funding which is the lifeline of mercenary warfare. Yet, it is not reason enough to make ongoing negotiations with TTP successful. The whole scenario suggests that there will be some tough days ahead for Decision Makers of the state. It is more important to prepare ourselves for situation arising out of ‘failed negotiations’.
It has somehow crawled deep in to our national psyche that instead of thinking ahead, we have developed this lethargic habit of continuous firefighting, rather than preventing the fire from igniting in the first place. More important issue at hand is the situation developing after US exit from Afghanistan. This is serious milestone and it should be taken seriously, only if we understand the gravity of scenario emerging in the region after US’ complete or partial departure.  
Pakistan has been able to maintain fairly adequate relations with Afghan Taliban over the past two decades. Time to yield pro-Taliban policy is nearing as US has already announced exit from Afghanistan this year. However, TTP has been created as a buffer between Pakistan and Afghan Taliban. These mercenaries have created enough trouble for the state of Pakistan in recent past. Those invested in TTP would like her to keep pushing the anti-Pakistan agenda. After US exit, it would not be long before Afghan Taliban take over Afghanistan, foreseeing which Mr Karzai has already started negotiating with them. At the same time, anti-Pakistan forces must do all they can to push a deeper wedge between Pakistan and Afghan Taliban by orchestrating a stronger nexus between Afghan Taliban and TTP. Keeping this whole situation in view, it is imperative that we brace for the change in Afghanistan and be absolutely clear in our policy towards Afghanistan, Afghan Taliban, TTP, formation of various coalitions and our response to all likely contingencies arising out of these coalitions.
Immediately, after US exit, formation of coalition govt between Afghan Taliban and Karzai establishment is inevitable scenario. Taliban will get the lion’s share in running the state affairs. Otherwise, Taliban taking over Afghanistan by force will be a matter of days rather than months. Taliban are a force to reckon with and they will definitely have a say in post US Afghanistan. It all looks good from Pakistan’s perspective. But what will be the role of TTP in this scenario? Those who invested so much in destablising Afghanistan and Pakistan will not like a coalition forming between Pakistan and Afghan Taliban because it will nullify the very purpose of creation of TTP. TTP has its own fear of redundancy because if the funding stops, they will go out of job. It may lose relevance in emerging equation. So, those who planted TTP between Pakistan and Afghan Taliban would like it to remain a thorn in the side.
Million dollar question is how TTP can remain relevant after US exit? It has to keep both ends tidy i.e. formation of coalition with Afghan Taliban and be recognized as a stake holder in the eyes of people and state of Pakistan. This clearly is visible in their willingness to negotiate with the govt of Pakistan. These talks will fail but TTP will walk out of these talks as winners. Govt’s willingness to talk to them affords them a tacit approval and recognition as stakeholders which has a greater symbolic value than it appears.  
Coming over to policy line that Govt of Pakistan needs to adopt after US exit from Afghanistan. We have to remain proactive in this scenario otherwise this situation will go down, like so many others in the past, as a missed opportunity. Few extreme essentials are as under:-
1.    We must covertly maintain strong link with Afghan Taliban. Formalise details of coalition with Afghan Taliban before the US exit from Afghanistan.
2.    Karzai Govt is extremely vulnerable at this point in time. In post US scenario, Mr Karzai’s Govt may appear least significant stakeholder, but we must continue with confidence building measures with Afghan govt incumbent.
3.    TTP must not run away with ongoing peace parleys. We must ensure segmentation of TTP splinter groups. After segregation we must go after TTP Shura which is centre of gravity of TTP movement/ mercenary war. We must settle issue of TTP before US exit, otherwise, this monster will cause unmitigated damage to Pakistan.  
4.    Discourage and prevent formation of a formal coalition between TTP and Afghan Taliban. Funders and founding fathers of TTP will do all they can to form this nexus. However, from Pakistan’s perspective, it is a recipe for disaster. This can result in unprecedented bloodbath in the region.
5.    With US exit, threat to US forces in Afghanistan will automatically diminish. Drone attacks on Pakistan’s territory must stop.

Bribery رشوت

Nearly a decade ago, few Sociologists visited Pakistan including 2-3 Americans and 4-5 Scandinavians. They were investigating reasons why bribery is so common in Pakistan and other countries? Why Government and semi-government officials accept bribes on any given opportunity? Why do they hassle their countrymen like this? Out of curiosity, I remained with this group for a year or so, to find out what comes of this research. Finally, they concluded that no one would take bribe unless he thinks himself to be lowly, wretched and pitiable. To extend his hand in bribery, a person has to be convinced in his heart that he is wretched, mean, liar and lowly. If a person lives a contended life with respect, honour and dignity, he would not resort to taking bribes under any circumstances. Our religion has also emphasized that we must not let go of dignity, grace and contentment. Always consider ourselves the best and superior among creatures because we have been granted the status of Ashraf-ul-Makhlooqat اشرف المخلوقات (Best of creation). To live up to this status we must try to live like the best of creation. We often hear and read in books that dog is a desecrated animal and we have been discouraged to keep it as a pet except watchdog for cattle. Logical and religious reasoning is proffered in this regard which is disapproved by kids of new generation (my grandchildren often protest why I not allowed them to keep dogs in house). Willy-nilly we allow them but it has been pondered upon why dogs are not allowed to be kept at home? If this animal is unclean then there are other animals which are not clean as well. Why only dogs are not allowed to be kept at home? It revealed that dog among all animals particularly among pets is a psychophysicist and keeps waging his tail to please his owner. Our religion did not want to keep an animal close to us which keeps polishing our apples all the time. Dogs are thought to leave negative impact on our lives because they are always ready to please us by wagging their tails or cuddling our feet all the time. That is the reason we are not allowed to keep such an animal as pet. There is a possibility that his characteristics may take root in your personality. When you become a psychophysicist, without a reason you tend to please others, which may leave negative impact on your individuality, grace and personality. So please do not keep this animal as pet. Keep a cat as pet, it will not please you rather when not in good mood, a cat may snap at you with her claws. Horse is a beautiful animal and is an old friend of man. A horse can die for you. But if you do not treat him well, he will react by standing on his rear legs but he will not try to please you. You have to treat him well. There are other animals like eagle and hawk.  You must have observed the eagles with Arab princes who visit our country in hunting season. They sit them on their hands and blindfold them. If head cap is not worn, the eagle can even snap at his owner on whose wrist it sits protesting why I am being enslaved with these chains and cords around my feet. We are allowed to keep such animals but those which tend to impair our dignity and teach us flattery, are not allowed. At the same time, draw clear lines between you and your ego and avoid arrogance and pride of Pharoses. Man cannot live a life of his choosing because of the lines drawn which limit his total freedom of action. So much so, there are lines drawn to his biological needs. It is my biological need to eat food and eat more, better and tastier food. But I am enjoined to draw a line today. Today you cannot eat from dusk to dawn. Delicious food will come your way, mouthwatering aura of food will tempt you but you will not eat it. The order is not to eat during daylight hours because you are the best of creation and you are a notch above from the rest. Man is the best of creation when he attains total freedom, when he can choose to do or not to do, only then he becomes truly free.  But he reins in his undue and proscribed desires and actions which makes him the best of creation. It is not true freedom to write an article against someone or deliver a fiery speech but to exercise control and remain within limits of human decency, is real freedom. A buffalo grazes in alfalfa fields and eats whatever she likes whether it is clean or not. But he is a man who can eat everything yet restrains himself during fasting hours. During his fast even if hundred guests show up, he serves them with food and drinks, extends warm hospitality but does not eat himself. The purpose of keeping him from attending his biological needs is not to starve him but the objective is to polish his dignity and grace so that he can exercise control over himself when required. A brigadier lives in our neighbourhood in Model Town Lahore. He is very fond of dogs. He had a good Al Session dog. Somehow, the brigadier lost liking for the dog and it was left to wander at his own. The dog developed habit of eating raw meat and remains of butcher shop, which is considered unhealthy for dogs. When the dog would return after daily way wandering, he would not behave well.  Due to this, the brigadier set down a note on little card and placed it in his neck collar saying,” Please do not give this dog raw meat, if this dog comes to butcher shop, just shun him away”. Seeing the note, butchers would not give meat to brigadier’s dog. Dog is a psychophysicist and he must have thought that he was in trouble and he should find a way out of this? Al Sessions are very intelligent dogs. No real surprise when this dog found out that whole problem was with the card inserted around his neck. So he tore it apart with his claws and teeth. Next day when he went out, it was obvious that the restraining note was not there, so he ate well and returned home happily in the evening. But for us humans, it is better to go to some cave then to live lowly life without self-esteem which will be no different from lives of animals and insects.

            Once an international conference of scientists was held which was also attended by Albert Einstein. After lunch break, one of the participants inquired from Einstein, ‘Sir, if we keep the vastness of universe and milky-ways in mind, mathematically, place of man is much smaller than a tiny particle i.e. it amounts to nothing’. Consenting to his contention, Einstein remarked,’ True, it is amazing that meaningless, worthless and insignificant man who values lesser than a speck, while looking through his telescope, is unfolding mysteries of the universe to his fellow beings’. One should not consider himself so worthless to succumb to taking bribes. You will come across people who will convincingly tell you,’ everyone takes bribes’ and ‘values have changed’. In fact, people of this kind consider themselves despicable, mean and sordid, and their guilt continuously hurts them. Allah has bound us in so many different ways. If you ponder, you will see all the nations, all the communities and groups of people in the world start their day when sun breaks on the horizon and someone will tell you that today is first day of December or first of January. There is only one nation in the universe which starts her day at sunset. That Ummah is Muslim Ummah which starts her day in the evening. You must have observed in Ramazan when cannons are fired, hooters are sounded or announcements are made on loudspeakers or media after last light to declare that we have entered the month of Ramazan. We do not enter Ramazan in the morning rather in the evening. This is a strangely different religion where day or month starts in the evenings. No other religion in the world has this kind of issues. In my reckoning, this Ummah has been distinguished from others. Notwithstanding the fact that new day or month has commenced, you still will have to face the darkness of the night because you are a dignified Ummah. You must not be weary of the darkness of night, rather you have to have the self belief to reach the day break when light shall shine everywhere. This implies that you will have to lit the darkness of night with the light of your soul, self and personality. All of us start our day and month with sunset. We as Muslims go in to the night with the belief that darkness of the night will not do us any harm. There we are, there is this darkness and light in this darkness is due to the light within us. We are not as anxious to catch a bright day and sunny morning like other nations of the world. We lit candles in darkness of night with our breaths. This dignity and poise is our hallmark. But sometimes we fall short of this mark. Then the guilt takes birth. It cannot happen that we debauch ourselves by saying ‘times have changed’, ‘everyone is doing the same’ (taking bribes), so should we. You may give your arguments against it by writing or convincing others but you cannot suppress your guilt. You cannot get away with the framework which has been enjoined upon us. This reminds me of the story of Khawaja Naseer ud Din Chragh Delhvi who was Khalifah of Hazrat Nizam ud Din Auliya when Delhi was hit with a severe drought. People went to him and requested him to pray for rain by offering Prayer of Istisqa. He reluctantly agreed thinking how could I ask for something which was completely Allah’s discretion. Anyway, on predetermined time and place he went and led the prayers but nothing happened. No sign of clouds appeared on the horizon and he embarrassingly returned from that place. Among the people who attended those prayers, was a sage named Yousaf Sarhandi who told him that same thing had happened before as well. Everyone gathered and prayed for the end of drought but nothing happened. He said when nothing worked at that time, people suggested that we must ask someone who carried himself with dignity and was editorialized person because Allah listened and trusted the word of such people. Yousaf Sarhandi said he had no objection to that and asked people who that person might be? People proposed that a sage lived near Seri Darwazah in Delhi, we should go to him and request for prayers. When we reached there, I was amazed and mortified to see that sage was a eunuch named Khawaja Rahat. The person who took me to Khawaja Rahat introduced me and stated the purpose of visit which was to request him to pray for rain fall. He inquired what would happen then. The person said, Hazrat! (He used this word for that eunuch, I am in serious discomfort addressing that great person as eunuch, but since he was eunuch and he had declared himself as such. But see how graceful people carry themselves? It has nothing to do with caste, gender or eunuchs. Human dignity and grace is a different thing altogether which comes in humans through soul) Delhi is seeing worst drought because it did not rain since long. That great person asked the maid to bring hot water for ablution, after which he prayed. He stood on his feet and addressing Yousaf Sarhandi said, “You must go and offer prayers for rain fall according to prescribed procedure and beg Allah to show mercy on His creatures. Still, if it does not rain then (he pulled a strand of thread from his cloak) wrap this strand around your right hand and request Allah that this strand is from cloak of Khawaja Rahat the Eunuch who has submitted himself to You, who does not meet people, chooses to lives in a quiet corner with dignity and grace and avoids people so that people may not ask him to pray for them, has requested for rain fall from You”. Yousaf Sarhandi said that we did as were told. People came in numbers as if entire Delhi had poured out. We all offered Prayers of Istisqa but nothing happened. Then I took out that strand of thread from my turban which was given by Khawaja Rahat the Eunuch, wrapped it around my right hand and prayed to Allah. Instantly, clouds appeared on the sky and torrent poured down so fast that despite quick dispersal, rain caught them before reaching their homes.
            Ladies and gentlemen, now it is up to us that being part of this Ummah how dignified we opt to live our lives.  May Allah grant us a life of dignity and grace. I pray that Allah gives you due relief in life and blesses you with ability to offer relief to fellow beings. Ameen.