Current year is an election year almost all over the world including the United States, Pakistan, India and Bangladesh. Ironically, the essence of true democratic values is fading away and instead the trend of fan or cult following is taking roots even in the most developed democratic societies of the world.
Such trends have relegated democratic attitudes and projected a more aggressive, self-styled and myopic approach to elect leaders for decision making on very crucial issues concerning challenging domestic and global subjects. The US which is regarded as the world’s most advanced democracy, is confronted with a similar situation where Donald Trump has introduced a trend to attract his constituency through sensational overtures. For Mr. Trump his country can only lead to prosperity if he is at the helm of affairs. His intolerant and radical approach towards his political opponents is void of any political tinge and democratic norms. Interestingly, USA sensed the far-reaching negative ramifications of this undemocratic tendency taking roots in their country and resorted to effective preventive measures. As a state, The US reacted timely and decisively to denounce the blatant physical assaults by the followers of Donald Trump in which they resorted to vandalizing symbols of statehood and democracy. Similar swift retribution was witnessed by governments of France and UK in response to vandalizers. As a matter of fact, no state allows such happenings which may jeopardize the symbol of statehood and pose challenges to writ of the state.
On the contrary, even more heinous acts of vandalism were perpetrated across the country on 9 May 2023 but so far any legal retribution by the state is in pendency. Pakistan Army has expressed an explicit point of view in denouncing these acts of desecrating our national symbols and martyrs by terming it the BLACK DAY of national history. The circumstantial evidence of these acts suggested that malicious episode of vandalism was a well thought out scheme aimed at discrediting Pakistan Army. PTI leadership orchestrated the entire plan which was later on confessed by same leaders denouncing their affiliation with the party to avoid any punitive measures subsequently. Numerous videos and audios broadcasted at national mainstream media leave no doubt about the involvement of PTI’s leadership orchestrating and managing the events of 9 May 2023 with no remorse even today. These events were preceded by a hate mongering social media campaign to incite public sentiments against our Army; an act which our enemy could not materialize since our creation as an independent state. The cult following created through well planned social media campaign was vehemently used to prove the legitimacy of these anti state acts. Post 9 May media campaign was even vicious to target state apparatus with varied domestic and foreign audience. The State was maligned for committing human rights violations and to strengthen this propaganda, anti-Pakistan foreign lobbyists were hired. PTI’s erstwhile Chairman had always been an exponent of Western Democracy but his fan followers opted to remain averse to what happened to Donald Trump after committing similar acts against the State. Is Pakistan a lesser State to let the country become a banana republic in the hands of those who only tend to pursue their vested political interests and aspirations?Our democracy is under the nasty blitz of populism which has apparently created requisite influence on those institutions responsible for rendering justice.
After the lapse of eight months, our judicial system is bewildered and unmoved to deliver justice to those who have not only physically assaulted and ravaged national institutions but also distressed the families of our martyrs by disrespecting their emblems. Societies with insensitivity to justice are doomed to perish. State is expected to extend it passionate touch to its people, however, a dispassionate justice system is must to ensure rule of law to distinguish a state from jungle. In the wake of ongoing elections campaign, the mantra of level playing field by same elements responsible for 9 May events is absolutely out of place. Incongruously, this mantra is duly acknowledged once we see PTI leaders being out of the way relief in electoral politics. Contrary to the fact that convictions of 9 May planners, abettors and facilitators could have been the order of the day, we are witnessing an altogether a different trend. If stern actions not taken against people involved in 9 May hooliganism, there is always a chance that such heinous acts will become a norm with a tacit support of those inimical forces hell bent on tarnishing the image of our Armed Forces.
It is crucial for our judicial fraternity to rise to the challenge and resort to a dispassionate legal discourse as any further delay will amount to denying the justice. We as a responsible society also need to be evolved into a true democratic society instead of pursuing a course of cult following.