I resigned because I didn’t want to be part of a government which had trampled over my maroora’s (people) rights. On the day that we had to vote on the budget, I had to make it clear that, unlike many others, I wasn’t going to give my vote of confidence to this government.
I am glad I did what I did because my conscience is clear. I did not become my party’s forward block nor sat in the assemblies where my people’s issues continued to be trampled upon. My resignation letter was self-explanatory.
My future strategy needs to be shared so that we can rid of the prevailing despondency and show people that there is a way forward out of this mess. A mess created by the potpourri of political actors who have been acting in their vested interests and playing musical chairs. By now it’s clear that most parties have given a lease of life to this government by voting for the budget and are thus a part of the problem and not the solution. Deliverance cannot come from any of them but, in fact, can come by rejecting them through the ballot because they have all been tried and tested. In fact, they need to be rejected through mid-term elections so that deliverance from despotic governance can come quickly.
How will the deliverance occur? When all patriotic, experienced politicians, political workers and youth create a much-needed collective leadership and rally for change. There is a need for many such movements because Pakistan is large and has many localised issues which need to be solved fast by like-minded patriots.
The message of these movements needs to be this: It’s time for a change because Pakistan has suffered plenty and cannot sustain economic hemorrhage any further. It’s time for people to voice their discontentment and rally around solid leadership. It’s time for people to reject old politicians who only win due to their fear tactics, and stand by honest ones.
In essence, its time for the youth to adopt issues of the poor as their own rather than standing aloof and disinterested. It’s time for them to work towards mass moblisation. It’s time for rural and urban areas to see that their issues can only be resolved when a unified approach is taken. It’s time for professionals to analyse the reasons for Pakistan’s hemorrhaging and plan for an alternative government by setting up a shadow cabinet that the country so badly needs. It’s time for businessmen to contribute to such a movement. It’s time for the legal community to continue to contribute to justice by fighting cases for free as part of this movement. It’s time for the media to continue to highlight the difference between new and old politics.
We all have our specific roles. The movement’s success is not possible without a collective approach — an approach that joins sects, religions, provinces and peoples with a cohesive manifesto.
Perhaps this is the reason I have decided not to join a political party as yet because this movement requires much work. The answer to which is the right political party to join will become clearer when all are tested on real issues in the battlefield.
Call it a movement for political reform, for revolution; call it a pied piper for justice, it’s a process. It is a hard, long, painful process of cleansing the evil out of the political system. It’s a question of not compromising on the right policies. It’s a question of building consensus on the correct policies across the national divides. It’s a question of spreading hope. The goal is a just, developed, moderate Pakistan where there is a focus on good governance, national security, climate change, economic revival and nationalism. That is the only plan that will save us.
Published in The Express Tribune, July 1st, 2011.
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