OTTAWA, CANADA: I am a Canadian Pakistani and I hold dual nationality. I am clear that I can vote in Pakistan but not be a member of parliament as I could find myself divided in situations of moral and military conflicts. The Supreme Court of Pakistan held exactly the same point of view when deciding the petition made on an important national issue by a dual national, Mr Tahirul Qadri.
However the entire world is amazed and looks disdainfully at Pakistan for its double standards. It has a provincial governor who is a British national, a regulatory head who is an American national and a political party head who is a British national. A sizeable proportion of its senior bureaucrats are dual nationals.
Are these people not handling some of the most vital matters relating to the state of Pakistan? Why have the courts decided to look the other way in these cases? Why have they not been removed from their positions? If Pakistan chooses to live with such blatant dichotomies and discrepancies in its major policy matters, how can it ever hope to solve any of the humungous problems that it faces today? It may be far better for Pakistani rulers to get out of their deception modes, give up on petty political bribes and apply the same laws for all dual nationals of Pakistan.
Dr Sohail Kirmani
Social Sciences Research Unit
Published in The Express Tribune, February 25th, 2013.