Society Magazine

Stop Politics of Hatred and Provincialism

Posted on the 22 February 2013 by Azharnadeem

new province in punjabPakistan today is facing both external and internal threats. It is becoming one of the most dangerous places on earth. The people are very much concerned at the direction Pakistan is moving. This is not the Pakistan we always knew. Many are increasingly beginning to convince themselves that the present Pakistan government could be viewed as the worst in the history of Pakistan. There is no democracy for all practical purposes and we have a situation today where the right hand does not know what the left hand is doing. The Government is deteriorating from day to day, has failed to provide protection to the people and political situation has worsened to such an extent that nobody is safe in the country. Conflicts are also within the country. Ethnic and communal conflicts are leading to bloodshed and disorder is equally threats to national security as external aggression is. The civilian leadership has not been able to govern the country effectively. This is the governance dilemma.

Pakistan is stuck between being an outright civilian dictatorship and a stable real democracy. People in government are only answerable to their party and they are working for their personal benefits. Enemies of Pakistan are set to create rift among different religious sects. The recent surge in violence has caused grave concerns. Many Pakistanis have been sent to their early graves for crime not committed or known. Pakistan once held up as the most moderate of the Islamic state seems to be embracing extremists and their dysfunctional violent ideas. The ongoing war on terror has drained the financial assets of Pakistan to the very detriment of the Pakistani people rendering the people unemployed. The press is secretly paid to write articles that would justify governmental actions even if they constitute blatant violations of human rights, corruption, or loss of public institutions.

Instead of devising new methods to unite and rearranging the basic building blocks of Pakistan, President Zardari has tasked his party leaders to come up with new tricks to divide the nation. At this critical stage they floated the idea of Seraiki province without consulting the people living in that province including the people demanding new province. The government’s tactic of “dividing” Punjab is merely political, since it knows it is really very hard for PPP to gain votes from the province.  Paid media is propagating this absurd doctrine of need more provinces on the behest of President Zardari. The danger of lighting a fire in Punjab is that it can engulf the entire country. To forming new provinces in this already fragmented society will deteriorate ethnicity of this society further, if not completely mutilate it. Further, I fail to understand PPP’s double standard ideology; On the one hand they are insisting to divide Punjab and on the other hand their party members say “Dividing Sindh means dividing Pakistan and we will not let that happen”.

The demand for a Hazara province out of KPK has again been renewed. MQM supporters would demand for Karachi and Hyderabad as a separate province, unacceptable to Sindhi nationalists. All the tribal based communities will also put forward their demands for separate provinces that would not only be financially problematic for state but also create chaos across the country. Just imagine, dozens were killed on mere change of name from NWFP to Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa, and then imagine the bloodletting which could welcome the partition of a province. And with every drop of blood wasted in the name of division of provinces, it is PPP who would be responsible. PPP leaders absolutely lack the vision. Even if at all new provinces are to be made in Pakistan; reason of creation of new provinces should mainly be administrative in nature and political in practice. If we do it on ethnic lines there is no doubt that Pakistan will meet the same fate of 1971 again even if we keep it denying like of previous occasions.

Obviously the people who are calling for more provinces don’t understand that they are inviting more problems. At the end all they will do is create more layers of government administration and bureaucracy. They want to divide Punjab which is already the best governed and managed, would it not help to divide the more poorly managed provinces? Our country is daily moving towards total political, economic and social collapse. We are not far from the road to disintegration. It will be the fault of all us if it happens. Let us sit together and speak honest truths to one another. This situation needs to be arrested before it is too late. Let us use superior arguments among ourselves in the spirit of give and take to decide what we want. The spirit of religious tolerance and sectarian harmony is equally essential besides the need for forging solidarity among all the linguistic, cultural, regional and ethnic entities in the country. National rebirth must begin with the family through the inculcation of values and virtues of truth, fairness, selfless and justice in the youths and in every Pakistani.

Owing to their lust for political power, PPP leaders have resorted to dividing the nation in terms of ethnicities. President Zardari is promoting provincialism and ethnocentrism. It is a well-known fact that this corrupt and irresponsible political leadership has made the citizens suffer during the last five years. It is again these same incompetent leaders bringing up these divisive issues of ethnicity, regionalism and hatred to cover up their failures and corruption. It is about time that we all start realizing this.  Zardari wants to play the Siraiki province card to win in next elections. This is dirty politics being played by PPP based upon regionalism and ethnicity. At this stage of history, which has become characterized by so much violence, suffering and death, Pakistan needs a leader that has the mind, the courage, the determination, the wisdom, the understanding, the compassion, and the common sense. Common sense should tell us that the nation is in a grave situation today. With the obvious breakdown of law and order and the decline of the economy, change seems to be in the wind. Yes, the situation in Karachi today is frightening; it is burning. The situation is so bad. Whether the nation is alive, failing or failed is difficult to say at the moment. Instead of falling into the controversies of new provinces, it is the duty of the Federal Government to ensure security of our nation and the citizens. Security is not about tanks and military weapons, but it’s about confidence and trust between the people and the community. This is lacking.

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