Political Maneuvering and Democracy

We are grateful to Riaz Toori for writing this piece for BAAGHI

Pakistan’s political history is replete with palace intrigues, conspiracies and atrocious campaigns. The democratic history of this country is also not so estimable. Several factors stalled the growth of democracy in Pakistan. The major factor remains the autocracy that hardly dinted the democratic culture. The dubious role of many so called democratic politicians that strengthened autocrat for vested interests is another factor and immature attitude of our politicians also hindering democracy to prevail. No other political party except PPP can be reckoned to have true democratic roots. For it always stand against dictators, its unrivaled struggle for democracy and numberless sacrifices for the democracy.

After the martyrdom of Mohtarma Benazir Bhutto, many spear heads from media and civil society forecasted that Pakistan Peoples Party do not can nor more survive in this political culture. Not only after the martyrdom of Mohtarma, till date prophecies of dooms and toads predicting pack up of Pakistan Peoples party and President Asif Ali Zardari. But following the vision and ideology of Mohtarma Pakistan Peoples Party not only survived despite conspiracies, political brinkmanship and smear campaigns against its leadership. What PPP faced in this short spam of rule, no other political party even faced in the entire history of Pakistan. The party which had to work for the betterment of the country, which had to nudge this country on the way of prosperity and sovereignty, the party which had to accomplish the dreams of Mohtarma Benazir Bhutto Shaheed, the party which had to empower the subjugated, exploited and poverty struck people is unfortunately entangled with numberless problems by media trial, leg pulling, mudslinging, character assassination and different nefarious designs. Although PPP committed some mistakes but that mistakes neither harmed democracy nor hammered national interests.

Striving against all the vilification campaigns, Zardari proved him a leader of charismatic appeal. Although After BB Shaheed PPP turned into a crowd of mourners yet Zardari decided to fulfill the dreams and ambitious of BB and in a short spam of rule, he proved him true heir of Bhuttos. The policy of reconciliation is the fruit of Mahatrma’s vision and the way President Zardari executed this policy is laudable. Anti- Pakistan forces left no stone un-turn to undermine this policy but Zardari through every thick and thin did not abandon it. The worst ever political rivals, the rivals who even do not hesitate to drench their opponents in blood united at a single platform. Despite the differences in political ideologies, manifestoes and agenda, MQM, ANP, PPP, JUI-F and even PML-N bonded together.

By hook or crook PPP and President of Pakistan pulled this coalition substantiated with policy of reconciliation but finally JUI-F and MQM are betrayed by some factors that do not want the nascent democracy to flourish. Both the short tailed parties failed to show sagacity, political insight and wisdom, the sole characteristic of Pakistan Peoples Party. It might be not a great blow for PPP but for the democracy indeed it is a great jolt. PPP is the party of federation having roots in all the provinces and single largest party in the country, it does not need few members from MQM or JUI-F, but it may badly dent democratic culture in Pakistan.

The coalition was vital for MQM and JUI-F, not for PPP because both the parties have tainted past embroiled with several controversies. By sticking together PPP, they could learn a lot. They could emerge as the parties with better democratic growth.

The decision to part ways from coalition left several question marks on the future of both the parties. For MQM is restricted to Sindh more precisely to Karachi and JUI-F in a few miles inside Khyber Pukhtun Khaw. They did not isolate PPP but they isolated democracy, they segregated themselves. For PPP always exited independently and can even exit solo for centuries but both the groups even not able to run their candidates apart from their margins.

Besides this suppose PPP sits on opposition benches, how they can run the government. Even all these small groups including PML-N can not run the governance of this country. For the restrain, patience and acumen PPP have, PML-N can not demonstrate ever. Such a coalition government even can not exist for a month. Thus MQM and JUI-F should not play in hands with establishment, anti-democratic elements and media pundits. For PPP is guarantor of their bright future, prosperity of Pakistan and sovereignty of this country.

By Riaz Ali Toori