Wednesday, October 18, 2017

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All we cared was our reputation on the internet

It was the night of 16th December last year when most of the people changed their Facebook display pictures to black and wrote aggressive notes on social media and many took part in the candlelight vigils as well. We thought and some believed that people are actually getting aware about the power of unity but unfortunately we were wrong. All they cared about were the likes and comments on their statuses, videos and selfies on social media. Peshawar attack was in top five trends till December 30th. The Christian community didn’t even celebrate Christmas because of Peshawar incident but people who took part in protests and vigils in support of the children died in Peshawar attack were blocked by containers to the Sea Side on new year’s eve but they managed to celebrate it anyway because Happy New Year was the trend those days and they didn’t want to miss any like or comment on their Facebook timelines, twitter accounts and Instagram profiles.

We all have recently seen few pictures of a boy hanging leafless in an Islamic Institution with his hands tied as well. I have no clue about the absence of those people who were bragging about Peshawar attack and about the the public execution of terrorists. News further told that he was a seven year old boy playing in front of his home in the evening when someone abducted him. He was later found in a mosque hanging from a fan on the second floor. Autopsy cleared that the juvenile was raped and then murdered. However Punjab Police have detained the prayer leader of that mosque along with another suspect for further investigation. I have noticed people complaining that the pictures are not so appropriate to share on social media as there are children using these websites too.

I have seen no aggressive notes, no sympathetic quotes on this issue so far. It is either because these hypocrites think that this is a usual thing in Pakistan and they have not even a minimal element of humanity left in them unless their own son or brother become a victim or it is because Imran Khan and Reham Khan’s wedding is much more important than the death of a child. Social media is full of this wedding posts that people don’t even have time to give their opinions on some other issues because this wedding is trending these days and they can’t manage to miss a like or a comment or a share on their post. A little hope that arose in the last ten days of December seems vanishing steadily. I thought we actually cared about humanity but all we cared was our reputation on the internet.

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Regular party election, regular change in top leadership, lack of dynastic leadership in the party have favoured JI to be rated as the most democratic

In a report published in December 2014 regarding an Assessment of Internal Democracy of Major Political Parties of Pakistan by PILDAT which has been prepared by analysing eight (8) major political parties of Pakistan. The scores assigned to the selected eight political parties, the list of parties in the order of most democratic to least democratic include the JI (56%), the PTI (49%), the ANP (46%), the JUI-F (43%), the NP (43%), the MQM (42%), the PPP(34%) and the PML-N (32%).

In brief, the Jamaat-e-Islami has been rated as the most democratic party. Apparently, regular party election, regular change in top leadership, lack of dynastic leadership in the party have favoured the party to be rated as the most democratic.

political-internal-democracy

Constitutional provisions and on-ground practices of the 8 parties have been studied by PILDAT
based on thirteen (13) indicators from an indigenously developed Assessment Framework.

However, if we disregard Jamaat because of its unique and somewhat restrictive ways (Limited Membership based on extensive scrutiny; No candidature or election campaigns allowed during party election etc.), the PTI emerges as the most democratic party. Open and keenly contested party election at all levels in 2012-2013 and regular core committee meetings have apparently favoured PTI to become the second most democratic party.

PILDAT is an independent, non-partisan and not-for-profit indigenous research and training institution with the mission to strengthen democracy and democratic institutions in Pakistan

In a relative sense, the PML-N has been rated as the least democratic party followed by the PPP which is rated as the second least democratic party among the eight parties evaluated. Lack of regular party election, lack of regular meetings of party bodies such as CWC and NC, visible trends of dynastic party leadership and no change in top party leadership for the last many years seem to be the factors which adversely affected the democratic credentials of PML-N. Almost similar factors impacted the democratic credentials of the PPP.

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political crisis and its solution

Suffering from writer’s block, I realized that the only way to overcome it is to unlatch my laptop’s flap and start typing, but what? I needed a topic and a hot one that deeply relates me, and the people I am constantly surrounded with. I finally started pondering over latest topics, went through gossip columns, celeb magazines but the only topic I could fathom was the one mentioned above.

After weeks of research, I concluded that the place we currently breathe in cannot be referred as a country but a maze with numerous paths and channels. Every individual is walking on a path he finds the most suitable among all. A Country, dear readers, is a place where every person is bound with certain rules which are mandatory to follow or else suffer the punishments laid by the laws but as for our country I never saw a LAW and hardly any punishments. Murderers and Rapists are respectfully released by our courts and when they get tired of pissing their humiliation across the society, they decide to contest for our SO CALLED ELECTIONS and not-so-surprisingly win and end up as our leaders representing the nation internationally.

I thought countless times about the root of our problem and every time I wind up blaming the system. Democracy, my friends, is not the problem. In fact if our country’s system was actually based on true democracy I wouldn’t have ended up writing this article. The problem is this deteriorated, hideous, meaningless and absurd system bended and molded by a minute yet powerful portion of our population, valid enough to fill up their own pockets. M. A Jinnah a.k.a Quaid-e-Azam laid down a structure which suited the country sublimely but somehow we ended up only remembering his date of birth, death and famous quotes while forgetting the vital parts.

Democracy has always been a controversial issue in Pakistan. A wide range of people still believes that democracy is the sole solution of our problem, well let me tell you that a wide portion of our country’s population are maniacs because they never got the awareness to judge what’s best for them and form their opinion accordingly. You all might wonder why, well the answer lies around you folks, cast a glance on our literacy rate and I bet you’ll know why.

Our politicians and analysts don’t get this simple thing that in order to make Democracy bear fruits we’ll have to educate. Let’s take a very common example; if 10 illiterate men are asked to choose a leader among them they’ll end up making the most illiterate of them their leader and that is exactly what our problem is.

Dear readers, let’s not forget the sole purpose which backed the creation of our country. Islam was the solitary motive behind the creation of Pakistan, and it is our responsibility to ensure that any system introduced in this land does not contradict the teachings of our religion. And as far as my memory and knowledge serves me, our Holy Prophet (P.B.U.H) was not a democrat but a socialist. I know that right now the incident of Battle of Ahzab (khandaq) might have floated up to your minds and I am please to clear the false mess in your heads that have been leading you astray for long.

Dear readers, just before the Battle of khandaq, our Holy Prophet (P.B.U.H) announced that the Muslim soldiers will face the Quraish outside Medina but many companions including Hazrat Omar and Hazrat Ali wanted to fight the enemies inside medina ensuring its (Medina) safety. When an argument arose, our Holy Prophet (P.B.U.H) decided to carry out a referendum. Now most people believe that every single person participated in this referendum which is untrue, only learned companions of the Holy Prophet (P.B.U.H) were allowed to put forward their opinion and when the majority favored in facing the enemy inside medina Holy Prophet (P.B.U.H) agreed to this decision.

Dear readers’, running a country is not an easy job to do, specially a country like Pakistan whose geographic and strategic position is mouth watering. And if this decision is given to a bunch of people, literate enough to write their own names, then only Allah knows what future holds for this land.

Recent political crisis in Pakistan did a great deal to support my argument since our highly esteemed and literate political leaders put forward such assertions that made our country’s leadership standards crystal clear. A little while back I overheard a political debate on TV where an MNA (not mentioning any name) argued that he signifies the fact that elections 2013 were rigged but he will stand beside the government to safeguard democracy. This clearly shows why the word democracy holds such significance for our politicians. They solely use this word to fulfill their own wants and widely neglecting the poor and needy.

Dear Friends, by writing this article I don’t intend to hurt or accuse anyone but to throw a spotlight on some vital and basic aspects of our country’s issues and its solutions. I hope you all enjoyed reading it and somehow convinced by my arguments and if not I hope you find the answers you all are looking for.

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A true leader works in the open as he's doing

Rising from the darkness a peaceful wind blows with sparkling illuminating lights a couple of months ago and it holds the people as if it’s a guardian to them, behind these words i m here raising the sketch of none other than a great precious pearl Imran Khan. Azadi March is one of the emerging topic nowadays. A huge number of people are supporting the cause but opposition groups are also in huge numbers. The man has taught us how to believe the Almighty, despite of facing container’s life his hope never dies. His hope is something i had never ever seen. He once again united the QUAID’s nation.

A man spending his life among the people for the sake of people the thing is he’s struggling for the nation, not for himself as other people are doing And Yes where there’s Allah’s support there’s no obstacle, he is moving with his belief, with his faith, with his honesty. The adulation he commands needs no bounds. The immense support of the nation is beyond anything in this world. The nation has finally awaken from a deep slumber Alhamdulillah. He has proved himself to be a change catalyst with his strong vision, initiative, patience, respect, persistence and courage.

As Bill Taylor says “The true mark of a leader is the willingness to stick with a bold course of action.” A true leader works in the open as he’s doing. In short if we want us among the rising and educated state we have to raise our voice, we have to support the righteous, we have to play our role as a responsible citizen. Let’s join hands to support the truth.

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International Day for Elimination of Nuclear Weapons across the World

Global Zero voiced its opinion on the account of International Day for Elimination of Nuclear Weapons across the World on 26th September 2014.

With the presence of 16,000 nuclear weapons in the world, capable of devastating impacts, can we really breathe a sigh of relief, contentment and peace? In 1948, the first atomic bombings on Hiroshima and Nagasaki wiped out more 200,000 people in a moment and left behind lasting effects for the generations to come. With the advancement of Technology, such weapons are capable of 100 times more destruction; imagine if a single one were to be detonated in a populous city. The destruction will be of such magnanimity that the Japan atomic bombings would be dwarfed.

This leads us to the false sense of security that we depend on through such weapons; this security is so fragile that one does not even need such a weapon to bring the house of cards down. It is ridiculous to hold other nations hostage and expect to achieve peace and be able to resolve the conflicts. Just like my holding a dagger to your throat and expecting you to shower me with roses. This is fundamentally, logically and rationally wrong. Nuclear weapons promise no security what so ever.

In today’s world where several millions of people suffer globally and lack the basic necessities of life globally, is it not a waste of resources to depend on, develop and pursue such delusional ideas of security?  With these weapons the countries seek perhaps to become the “bullies” who get to have all the lunch from each kid in the school, but it is only natural for the bully to be the most hated person around as well. But sadly, this league of ‘Nuclear Super Power’ seems to be more important than ‘global security’ for the sake of (delusion of) ‘National Security’.

With conflicts between such powers on the rise, the Prime Ministers of both the states (India and Pakistan) are urged to seek a peaceful resolution and the Presidents of the “Super Powers” need to revisit the chapters where they, being the champions of “world peace” were supposed to dismantle such armaments and contribute to world peace through the only right way there is.

In my opinion it is due time that serious steps were taken for the eradication of nuclear technology from the world for the arsenals and weaponry and its use be restricted  only for the positive ends of this knowledge.

Global Zero is observing the Disarmament Week 2014 from 27th to 31st October; focusing on professionals, families, athletes, professors, politicians and friends for Global Zero.

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How important is it to know who you are

We are born with our history that we can do nothing about but we are given the opportunity to shape our future, our past limiting us while our future calling us. Amid the push and pull a new history is written for the coming generations. How we learn from our ancestor’s success and failures is what determines the direction of our history. But if we choose to ignore it, we cannot and shall not learn nor will we be able to truly understand the roots of our dilemmas.

How important is it to know who you are and where you are from, to identify yourself. If you choose to ignore your history you might never truly know. What I observed around me during the past few weeks of political revolution or turmoil as some may call it is that our generation has come to a point where they are trying to find out who they were, what they are and what they are capable of which is a great thing for it is only those who question who will actually learn. The doors to your freedom of speech and thought opens from within so release and free yourself from ignorance and let the light of knowledge penetrate you. As it has been obvious lately that the Youth of our country  is actively taking interest in its current state and doing their part whichever they consider is right, reflecting that we are finally coming out of the darkness we let the oppressors push us into.  Politics has been a stigma for our generation for a while now, but this dark curtain of stigma pulled down to isolate the people from knowing their rights is being lifted slowly. Although sadly there are still some of us who are politically atheists , they have no interest in politics whatsoever .These are the people who need to realize that without our own interest in ourselves  no one else will pay any attention to us, that only we can undo what has been done to us in the past.

To have an opinion is of utmost importance because that is where we decide what is right and what is wrong for us. Without an opinion we are just puppets to those in control, doing their bidding and having no life of our own. What we do is that we create a false illusion of thinking that we are free when in reality this particular thought being fed to us is an act of enslavement in itself. Only when we personally realize what we must do to release ourselves from our dilemmas will we actually free ourselves.  Every single one of us should stand up for what they consider right or wrong and speak up their minds. We have to take an interest in politics because it effects our life on daily basis, shapes our environment today and for the future. In order to create an environment where what we believe is considered a worthy opinion, we should stand up for it our own selves.

Learn about your history! Know your facts! And investigate what you doubt. Know your rights and never let anyone snatch away your voice, only then will you get what you rightfully deserve. Don’t let anything intimidate you into muffling your voice. You are important! Every single one of us is important! Together we can change our nation into a great nation that we hope to pass on to our generations. Nations are broken and made by their people. Was it not for this country, we would be a minority oppressed and ruled over brutally and our rights taken away. We owe it to this land to stand up to save it from greedy hands and selfish motives, for us today and for our coming generations. Let us now break our silence and know our rights and scream it out loud that we won’t be kept in dark anymore. A political activist, Eldridge cleaver, once said “There is no calamity which a great nation can invite which equals that which follows a supine submission to wrong and injustice and the consequent loss of national self-respect and honor, beneath which are shielded and defended a people’s safety and greatness”.

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Election 2013 in Pakistan

Election rigging is not acceptable and condemned world wide but alleging media houses and respectable individuals would not help. Imran Khan may have some solid ground for his allegations but he has not presented any evidence so far.

One wonders whom Khan consults for his political advice or it occurs to him after every one year. As per record, during the election campaign, the most number of appearances made by Khan and his co party workers were on Geo News. Also, after he was discharged from hospital, he was interviewed by Hamid Mir. This Dharna Siyasat will not be of any benefit, rather he should focus on delivering in KPK in order to become the next Prime minister which is his greatest dream.

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Polio free Pakistan

Why our leaders including Imran Khan are silent about USA and CIA’s role in outbreak of polio in Pakistan? Liberals blame Taliban for killing polio workers but no one asks why not even a single polio worker was attacked prior to 02 May 2011 killing of Osama bin Laden, tracked by CIA by exploiting polio vaccinator, Dr. Shakil Afridi and NGOs like Save the Children. It’s infact USA which provided a reason to Taliban to attack polio workers as it is proved that the polio campaigners were used for spying. Government should move a case against CIA and US Government in the International Court of Justice and seek compensation for the losses that nation has to bear in form of travel embargos. Our leaders should highlight the root cause of polio saga so that the world knows that it is not Taliban who failed this country but it is actually the USA and their friends in Pakistan who made this happen.

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Amna Masood Janjua is the ray of hope and icon of struggle for families of thousands of missing persons who are abducted and held without trial and without informing their loved ones. She was beaten up, dragged and thrashed in front of the Parliament with her hijab taken off as cameras flashed and millions of stunned people watched this live on their TVs. Geo was the first channel to show this torture as live broadcast. It was not Indian army, thrashing and stripping hijab of a Muslim lady, but this was our own beloved Pakistani security forces who expect every Pakistanis to love them.

Love cannot be commanded by uniform. It comes from the mutual love and respect. Instead of protecting its citizens, our security forces abduct them, forcefully disappear them and then beat and arrest the aggrieved families on the streets to silence their dissenting voices. And then men in uniform expect love and respect? My heart cries for Hamid Mir. Has he been here, he must have been standing tall with his crew amid baton charge and tear gas and would have again exposed the plight of missing persons families to the whole world.

Amna was tear gassed but I cannot hold my tears sitting in front of TV. May Allah bless Amina and Hamid Mir, our prayers are with you.

 

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Journalists safety in Pakistan

Journalism is a profession that requires the bravest of hearts and souls. Highlighting and investigating hard-hitting stories is a major undertaking in itself. And sooner or later, the stories that journalists write may render them afoul of some influential personalities. In short, in the midst of uncovering the truth, reporters may find themselves painted with a bull’s eye.

This is exactly what a recent episode of BBC’s current affairs program Saibeen took a look at. Monday’s episode dealt with the dangers of being a journalist in Pakistan.

Independent sources quote that as much as 47 journalists have been slain in Pakistan for the last one year, making it one of the most lethal places in the world for journalism. In the face of such grim statistics, comes the recent (and brazen) gun attack on Pak journalist Raza Rumi. Rumi’s car was sprayed with bullets from unknown gunmen. He was injured and his driver succumbed to his wounds on the way to hospital.

Recent reports have put the affiliation of the assailants with TTP, the militant terrorist outfit.

Rumi was based in Lahore, a city that has largely been spared the fate of almost daily terrorist attacks that afflict Quetta, Peshawar and Karachi. That’s why the attack on the reporter-cum-TV-news-anchor represents a new front in Pakistan’s ongoing anti-terrorism efforts.

BBC spoke to Raza Rumi following the aftermath of the attack. He opined that how could anybody perform their journalistic duty when things had gotten so dire. Fearing for the safety of his family and well-wishers, it’s no surprise that Raza Rumi has left Pakistan. Reportedly, 15 of his colleagues in the media circles have followed suit as well.

According to the CJP (Committee to Protect Journalists), Pakistan ranks at 10th place on countries that have fell short of providing adequate security to the media.

This does not bode well for the issue of press freedom in Pakistan. It is commonly held view that the press faces threats from militants as well as the government (and military) that does not take kindly to reports that tend to criticize their shortcomings. The government needs to provide better security to the press fraternity as its duty to uphold the law of the state.

The English dailies are harder hit as they tend to give no space for the anti-obstructionist narrative.
Whether it is safe for the journalistic fraternity to keep doing their job in such dire conditions or leave the country for good, that’s a question to ponder by media organizations across Pakistan.

Something that BBC’s Saibeen program highlighted prominently. With the space for anti-TTP narrative rapidly shrinking, the job of journalists in ascertaining the facts on ground grows ever so important.
Pakistan needs to do more to protect those who are motivated with the desire to set the record straight.

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It was the night of 16th December last year when most of the people changed their Facebook display pictures to black and wrote aggressive...