Important WhatsApp Forward on the State of Pakistani politics

This is one of the few times that the Army has dramatically underestimated the will of the Pakistani people. Even though I dislike democratic parties in Pakistan; I stand with the Sharifs. The arguments that they are the only corrupt forces in Pakistan is laughable and derisive.

This has to break the back of the Army and I think the time has come to return to the barracks. The fear of Balkanisation in Pakistan is constantly stirred up by the Army to justify its interference.

Pakistanis are not interested in continued aggression with India and frankly there is only force in Pakistan that perpetuates it. I’m very upset with the Military since I dislike hypocrisy.

Imran Khan is a moron, the Bhuttos are just not a serious force (BB forgot to localise her kids) and it’s only the Sharifs that have that tactile touch to rally the population.

General State

A sinister game is underway to install Imran Khan and his ilk. This is the same man who has labeled a sizable number of people of Punjab as donkeys. His right hand man in KP, Pervez Khattak has said in a rally that “wherever I see flags of PPP and other parties flying over homes, I immediately come to know that the residence is occupied by children of prostitutes.” What Imran Khan’s ticket holder Aamir Liaqat has said about Maryam Nawaz is so disgusting that it cannot even be repeated here! This is the mindset which is going to rule this country in the coming days as DG ISPR has already indicated that this year is the year of change.

Mainstream media is completely in chains. Talat Hussain of Geo, a renowned anchorperson whose program on PMLN rally was not allowed to be aired has already been fired by Geo. Asma Shirazi, another bold and credible anchorperson who interviewed Nawaz Sharif has been subjected to a malicious character assassination campaign. The circulation of Pakistan’s most prestigious daily, “Dawn” has been significantly curtailed and news channel “Geo” has been coerced into being “favorable” The ISPR, the military’s media wing has labeled renowned Pakistani journalists as a threat to national security and several of them have been harassed and even severely beaten by ”unknown” men. As such, self-censorship out of fear is the norm.

The way rangers were deployed around the Ittehad Airlines plane when Nawaz Sharif and daughter Maryam came out at Lahore airport shows the panic and over reactive approach of the military mind. It was initially informed that NAB personal will arrest the ex-PM but what we saw was an entire battalion of armed rangers to do the job. These same rangers, who are supposed to protect the common man in aid of civil administration can be seen in footage ransacking and setting on fire, parked motorbikes and cars of PMLN workers during the PMLN rally. More than 17500 PMLN workers were arrested.

Candidates and workers of almost all parties save Imran Khan’s PTI are being intimidated and harassed. The PPP, the MQM, the ANP and the JUI have all complained that they are being prevented from active campaigning.

On the other hand, candidates affiliated with banned outfits like Hafiz Saeed’s Jamaat-ud-dawa disguised as Milli Muslim League (MML) and Ahle-Sunnat-wal-Jamaat of Mohammad Ahmad Ludhianvi enjoy full freedom to carry on with their election campaign. The Tehreek-e-Labbaik Pakistan (TLP) of Khadim Husaain Rizvi is also being patronized only to split the conservative vote of PMLN.

If that was not enough, cases under anti-terrorism act have been instituted against top PMLN leadership.

The amount of pre-poll rigging has been unprecedented. Candidates were forced to change loyalties, strong “undesirable” candidates were disqualified, and new parties were created to damage and disrupt PMLN. Not only that, the entire polling exercise is now under military control.

Manzoor Pashteen of PTM had warned that Taliban have again been allowed to re-enter North Waziristan. We also find a significant increase in acts of terrorism. So far around 160 innocent people have perished in Peshawar, Bannu and Mastung. The claim of “breaking the backbone of terrorists” has evaporated into thin air.

Pakistan has been using proxies in Afghanistan and Indian controlled Kashmir, but now the generals want a proxy (read Imran Khan) within Pakistan territory. An experiment to install a proxy has already succeeded at a smaller scale in the province of Balochistan where members of the provincial assembly were co-opted by hook or crook. The judges of our “esteemed” judiciary declared in a judgment this April that Nawaz Sharif was perhaps the only politician who did not happen to be “Sadiq” and “Amin.” (truthful and honest.)And hence, Nawaz Sharif who was on the brink of re-election has been disqualified for life.

However, for millions of Pakistanis, Nawaz Sharif’s conviction over corruption charges is not credible and today, he and his daughter Maryam Nawaz are the symbols of defiance to an arrogant and oppressive establishment which has always thwarted Pakistan’s evolution as a progressive democracy.

The attempts to create a civilian facade over a state run by the military will fail soon and the day is not far when people power will carry the day!

17 thoughts on “Important WhatsApp Forward on the State of Pakistani politics”

  1. Punjabis are good at writing revolutionary poetry (I would take ISPR propaganda video anyway over Indian army’s one), but the real heavy lifting is outsourced to other smaller ethnicities (pathans,sindhis) who bear the brunt of the excess of military rule. Smart people. 😛

    Anyway i still think Imran is a wild card, it will be interesting to see how much does he acquiesce to the army. The best bet for army is hung assembly which looks likely.

  2. The election is one week away now. It is fairly clear that the Army has decided that Imran needs to win. Anecdotally, when you enter DHA Phase 5 Lahore, you see Imran’s face everywhere or his cricket bat (PTI’s election symbol). You really have to look to see the poster of the PML-N candidate in the constituency (Saad Rafiq, ex-Railways Minister) or the PML-N tiger. I can’t speak for the situation outside DHA, but I would assume that you are not going to see too many PML-N signs. Jailing Mian Sahab and Maryam Bibi before the elections really casts doubts on the fairness of the whole process.

    However, it is difficult to rig the actual vote on polling day and large swathes of Central and Northern Punjab are still with the PML-N, according to analysts. This may be more clear outside urban areas, which tend to have a lot of PTI enthusiasts.

    Let’s see whether Imran is able to get a majority or cobble together a coalition. Also, how much of a sympathy vote will there be for PML-N now that the great leader is in jail?

  3. “Pakistanis are not interested in continued aggression with India”

    If this is true, what is it that has changed the minds of Pakistanis ? Are people just exhausted of the conflict ? Or is there a feeling that rapid economic growth is not possible without ramping down the conflict with India ?

    I wonder if there is a Pakistani (been through schooling in Pakistan) who can shed more light on this.

    1. Unless I am being too hasty, it appears that there is no Pakistani (citizenship solely of Pakistan/ship sinks if Pakistan sinks) contributing to this blog, perhaps not even people of Pakistani nationality residing abroad (for example: Indian H1B types).

      This makes our discussions on Pakistan/South Asia very limited, overly reliant on the media filtered information.

      1. I am a dual national and I’ve been living in Pakistan for the past two years. Most of my family lives in Pakistan. I think that is as Pakistani as it gets on BP.

    2. Outside of a few vested interest groups (Pakistan Army mostly), people are not really that concerned about India or Kashmir one way or the other. This doesn’t mean that most Pakistanis will not pay lip-service to the Kashmir cause, but it is not really a life and death issue for people.

      Generally, politically aware people are more concerned about domestic struggles (Army/Establishment vs. civilian politicians) and about the state of the economy (the rupee is now more than 120 to the dollar when it was about 100 to the dollar just a few months ago). The vast majority of people are more concerned with making a living and feeding their children than with any geopolitical issues.

      India has not been an issue in the current elections (as far as I know). The polarization is mostly based on the lines of being with the Army/Imran vs. the Sharifs.

      1. Appreciate the input. I am surprised CPEC is not a bigger issue. Also really surprised by how little talk there is about farmers in Pakistani politics, they still make up 40+ % of the population.

        1. I’m sure the PML-N is claiming credit for CPEC. But their main slogan this election is “Vote ko izaat do”.

          Farmers don’t have a lot of political power. Politicians seem to be focusing on the urban voter. Rural voters mostly vote according to biradri or whatever their feudal lord tells them to do (in the case of Sindh).

        2. Yes even i was surprised as the lack of any political mobilization of farmers in pakistan in their history. The elite really have some good luck on that end. In India which is not perfect polity with already few avenues of any upper ward mobility or change you still have agrarian parties and protests.

          CPEC is not a big issue , because Indians and Pakistani see the British colonization very differently. So while Indian see every land owning project by foreign corporate (Vedanta,Posco etc) as land-grab and start protests, Pakistan is the polar opposite. Again to each its own.

          1. It would have been natural for Pakistan to have a strong farmer politics, but I guess the lack of sustained democracy and land reform checked any such growth. In that sense, Pakistan fits very much within the classical trajectory of industrialization (South Korea, Taiwan, China and Turkey), with a modernized urban elite and its rural kin (waderas, zamindars) suppressing the political voice of the much more numerous farming workforce. But Pakistan has not industrialized rapidly despite this. The military’s absorption of state expenditure is a big reason IMO, similar to the situation in Egypt.

  4. “I am a dual national and I’ve been living in Pakistan for the past two years.”

    Its interesting how Pakistan allowed dual nationals while Indian Govt didnt. I think you can probably even become a minister while holding dual nationality in Pak. I would put it down to the respective elite mindset of the two countries. For Pakistan who’s founding fathers were mostly Nawabs and Jagirdars , dual nationality was not a issue or taboo since they did spend a lot of time in Britain pre partition as well as have friends and family outside. Couple this with Pakistan early embrace of USA, it pulled Pakistan into the white anglo world. That would be one of the many reasons why Pakistanis were looked upon favorably vis -a vi Indian in the western world till the rise of whole 9/11 thing . Imran Khan , Tariq Ali etc.

    On the other hand Indian founding fathers, tried to be more Indian than common man and doubled down on their Indian-ness which unfortunately made them see a foe in every white man. So no dual citizenship as well as rhetoric of so called brotherhood of “Colonized people” .

    The regions which became Pakistan never had much antipathy towards the white man. Sindh and Pak Punjab were one of the most loyal regions of British, In India too we have that Bengal,Madras etc but we also had a lot of “unrest regions”.

    Again this is not value judgement on the mindset of two countries. To each its own.

    1. I think the laws were recently changed and you have to give up foreign citizenship in order to become a Member of the National Assembly. If you don’t want to get into politics, dual nationality is not an issue.

      1. Kabir

        Just realized that BAP of Balochistan election symbol is cow ??. Even the BJP would’nt do that

        1. Indira Gandhi’s breakaway faction of the Indian National Congress, Congress(I) from the late 1960s til 1977 had a cow with suckling calf as its election symbol.

          It was only changed after the emergency because the people had started comparing the Cow to Indira and Calf to Sanjay. 🙂

          1. But what were the odds that a party in Pakistan would do that

            That too in Jadhav”s territory ??

Comments are closed.

Brown Pundits