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Old Wednesday, September 16, 2009
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Default Seniors and qualifiers plz comment upon my Essay

it is written under heads in order to facilitate u ppl. i wl not write in headings there in exam.so plz neglect this issue and focus on my approach, analysis and expression.















ESSAY ON:

''DEMOCRACY IN PAKISTAN''

By:
RAFIQUE AHMED KHOKHAR




OUTLINE



Introduction: Democracy is yet to establish its roots in Pakistan.

When and where does the Democracy flourish?

The causes of Democratic Downslide in Pakistan and their impacts on Pakistani politics:

(a) Illiteracy in Pakistan.
(b) Majority is not enlightened to understand politics.
(c) Inefficient leadership.
(d) Inefficient political parties.
(e) Feudalism.
(f) Role of Military interventions:
-constitutional engineering by military.
-centre became strong.
-parliamentary sovereignty was the casualty.
-legislators played secondary role.


Current political scenario: Democratic or Not ?

(g) Government is in the hands of the elected people
(h) Military is back to barracks
(i) Strong and Independent Judiciary
(j) International support
(k) Auspicious signs for the future of democracy.


Prospects of Democracy in Pakistan.

Some Recommendations.

CONCLUSION:
Democracy can flourish successfully in Pakistan if its evolutionary process is not interrupted and the Government and the people of Pakistan make dedicated and committed efforts followed by genuine thirst for establishing democracy in the country once and for all.









ESSAY



INTRODUCTION:-

Pakistan has had a chequered experience with the democracy. Some people in the intelligentsia argue that democracy has not been given the chance to thrive in Pakistan, while the others believe that democracy is not feted in the elite structure of Pakistan in the true spirit. If we go through the political and constitutional history of Pakistan, we see that the truth lies in between the two opinions: Pakistan is struggling to be a democratic state. The same intelligentsia holds civil-military bureaucracy and inefficient political parties, organisations, and institutions as responsible for that fiasco and due to their being self-centered at the cost of national survival. Intermittent series of military interventions and separation of East-Pakistan from us are the outstanding results of such misguided priorities and self-interests based on self-survival rather than national survival. Having suffered at the hands of such vicissitudes of misfortune, Pakistan continues to be in search of a viable, stable, and established democratic system that could ensure a safe passage to human, social, political and economic development.



WHEN AND WHERE DOES THE DEMOCRACY FLOURISH ?

Democracy is a system of government run by the elected people and aimed at the collective good of all. Supremacy of the will of the people prevails. Each citizen contributes to its smooth and prolific running.
Before we jump to the core of the topic we are concerned with, it is very important to discuss, in brief, the pre-conditions for the success of democracy in any country of the world. It is only on the basis of this that we can diagnose the problems and overhaul the state of democracy in Pakistan.

To begin with, the citizens of democracy must be good, alert, enlightened, and educated. They must be able to understand and take intelligent interest in the public and state affairs. They must be ready to fight for their rights and resist any encroachment on their liberty. At the same time, they must also perform their duties honestly. They must subordinate their selfish interests to national and collective interests.

Secondly, character and ability of the common men also play a vital role in nurturing democracy. It is the character, habits, and attitudes of the common men that make democracy a success or failure. They must understand politics and state affairs. They must not be swayed by emotions. Their opinion should be based on sound practical judgment, tolerance and unselfish devotion to public good. They should actively participate in the affairs of the government. Everyone should be keenly interested in the welfare and happiness of his fellow men.

Thirdly, the price of democracy is eternal vigilance. The people should be alert, vigilant and active in order to preserve their democratic institutions. They should possess such virtues as wisdom, intellect, vigilance, common sense and honesty. According to Lord Bryce, a famous political scientist:

'' Indolence and indifference on the
part of citizens are the two enemies
of Democracy''.


When the people are indifferent, inactive and indolent in the public matters, crafty politicians, clever demagogues, rich plutocrats, and such other enterprising persons capture political power and abuse it for their selfish ends. The rulers become masters when the people are passive, but they are their servants when the people are active.

Fourthly, the education is indeed the first requisite of the success of democracy. Education is necessary to make common citizens good, intelligent, active, responsible, public-spirited, tolerant, and vigilant for their rights and duties.

Fifthly, democracy requires organisation and leadership. Indeed, the problem of organisation and leadership is more urgent for democracy than for other forms of government. Ordinarily, common citizens are neither adequately educated nor sufficiently interested in public affairs and problems. They also have not enough time or leisure to devote themselves to public matters. Hence, the need is to inform and educate them, to arouse their political interest and to organize them for public action. This important task is performed by political leadership. The leaders must themselves be honest, intelligent and public-spirited. They must be men of initiative, imagination and courage who can see and foresee the needs of the people and problems of their country. They should have the personality and charisma to lead the country. Great leaders like Winston Churchil, Attlee, Jawaharlal Nehru, Abraham Lincoln and Washington helped their democracies to thrive successfully.

Sixthly, existence of a free, fearless and independent media which is ready to make constructive criticism to governmental policies and plans. Such a media also creates a healthy public opinion. It informs the people and enables them to understand the problems of democracy and discharge their duties and responsibilities successfully.

Last but not least, the democracy can succeed only in that country where the vast majority of the people have a genuine thirst for democracy as a form of government and a way of life and they are willing to pay any price to preserve it.

These were the most important factors which must be there in the field to give birth to democracy as a system of government. NOW, keeping in view these pre-requisites of democracy, we shall analyse the state of democracy in Pakistan and issues in it.



CAUSES OF DEMOCRATIC DOWNSLIDE IN PAKISTAN AND
THEIR IMPACTS ON THE POLITICS OF PAKISTAN:-


Here we will analyse the hurdles before the development of democracy in Pakistan.

ILLITERACY IN PAKISTAN:-

After almost sixty two years of the independence, Pakistan's half of the
population continues to be illiterate. Pakistan is the only nuclear power Islamic state. National security is given top priority in Pakistan, while the issues like education, employment, and health are not paid attention correctly and sincerely. Education, as we discussed above, is the first requisite of the success of democracy. It plays a very important role in making common citizens good, intelligent, honest, active, responsible, public-spirited, tolerant and vigilant for their rights and duties. Bit in Pakistan, it has been a neglected sector, especially in rural areas. Current literacy rate stands at 52 percent. Ills like child-begging is seen common even in the urban areas and developed cities. Either the parents or the state negligence are to be blamed for that curse. But whoever's fault is it, it has proven to be injurious to our democratic roots and infrastructure.
This is a very serious problem because it has strangulated the development of democracy in Pakistan.


PEOPLE ARE NOT ENLIGHTENED ENOUGH:-

Actually, the lack of education has led us to serious lacks. One of them is the lack of enlightened people. The 48 percent of the population of Pakistan is uneducated and illiterate. They have no understanding of their rights and duties. They have no intelligence. They cannot understand the collective problems and solutions to these maladies. They are easily swayed by the shrewd and crafty politicians. Their opinions are not based on sound practical judgment, tolerance and unselfish devotion to public good. This is the very problem that has smothered the development of democratic spirit and practices in our country.


INEFFICIENT LEADERSHIP:-

The lack of education and enlightened people has produced inefficient leaders in Pakistan. In Pakistan, any politician who is rhetorical, orator, and rabble-rouser is considered as a leader. As we discussed above, when the people are inactive, indifferent and indolent to public and state affairs, shrewd and cunning politicians, clever demagogues, rich plutocrats and such other enterprising persons capture political power and abuse it for their selfish ends. Pakistan has seen many such people (generally considered as leaders). Dynastic politics continues to hinder the emergence of new leaders. Since the very start, Pakistani politics has been dominated by the rulers who have been extremely selfish. From 1947 to 1970, there were no general elections in Pakistan. The people in power considered it a risk that could dethrone them. They continued to dominate the civil-military bureaucracy from where thy derived the prolongation of their power and regimes. After the elections of 1970, the selfish interests of some people in power led to the separation of East Pakistan (now Bangladesh) in 1971. Until today, Pakistan continues to have those people in power who hardly have any sense of EXIT. They do not want to be dislodged even at the cost of national survival. Hence, Pakistan continues to be in search of a leader who could lead us to the pinnacles of greatness as a nation-state.


INEFFICIENT POLITICAL PARTIES:-

Pakistan has the multi-party system. There are so many political parties of local and national level that the general public is divided in their opinions. We have not been able to generate consensus on certain issues of local and national importance. These political parties are not only numerous but also they are undemocratic in structure and attitude. No party elections are held through which new and skillful leadership and talent could be generated. These parties continue to work on dynastic lines. Apart from being undemocratic in their attitude, structure and organisation, these political parties are also opposed to the party in power. They do not work as ''Loyal Opposition'' as in England and the USA. They are all sick of one another and united against the government. No doubt, all the political parties, through out the world, aim at gaining political power, but tolerance and patience are some of those principal values and principles of modern politics that without them, at least, democratic form of government cannot work successfully.


FEUDALISM:-

Waderas of Sindh, Chaudharies of Pujnab, Nawabs and Sardars of Balochistan and Maliks of NWFP have also marred our political system. Most of them are also the important members of some political parties. They exercise influential roles in these political parties and the constituencies they belong to. They command unconditional support from the people of their constituencies. Those who do not vote them risk their lives. They are either got punished by the SHO of the local police station or they are murdered in order to teach the lesson to the rest of the people. Hence they control the will of their people.
Most of the feudals do not allow their people to get education. Because the think that it might lead to sagging of their influence. Depriving the people from getting education means depriving them from developing democratic spirit and approach. Such feudal ills have been serving as formidable barriers in the development of democracy in Pakistan.


ROLE OF MILITARY:-

Since 1958 when the first Martial Law was imposed by General Ayub
Khan, military continues to play a very critical role in the state affairs even today.The defence and foreign policies of Pakistan are still formulated in of Rawalpindi. Pakistan has experienced three military rules: first from 1958 to 1971 by General Ayub Khan and General Yahya; second from 1977 to 1988 by General Zia-ul Haq; third from 1999 to 2008 by General Parvaiz Musharraf..These were the periods when the democracy in Pakistan suffered grave set backs. The constitutions in practice were trampled by the military rulers. New constitutional orders, emergencies and amendments were promulgated. Centre was made strong. Provincial harmony and autonomy were the important casualties. Parliamentary sovereignty remained a dream. Sectarianism and religious extremism took birth. Praetorian rule prevailed. Role of Political parties was diminished and political leaders were either arrested, hanged till death or sent into exile. No other thing has battered the development of democracy in Pakistan than the military dictatorship and frequent martial laws.



CURRENT POLITICAL SCENARIO IN PAKISTAN: Democratic or Undemocratic?

We can understand the current political scenario in Pakistan under following captions.

(1) ELECTED PEOPLE IN POWER:-

After the February 18,2008 elections, the elected people are holding the reins of power. We have elected Prime-Minister, President and other ministers which is the first and very important indicator of establishment of democracy in Pakistan. Both the Prime Minister and President belong to Pakistan Peoples Party which is enjoying public support at the grass-roots level. In the centre and in the provinces a coalition government led by PPP is formed. All the political parties are working in consonance with one another .A friendly but strong opposition is seen in the centre and provinces. All the political parties are united over the issues of national importance, though they have also different outlooks towards the issues of local importance. Petty differences exist between them. The government is facing serious external and internal crises. These crises have also been disturbing the performance of the government. But the atmosphere of cooperation and consensus that is existing is hoped to be the antidotes to these crises. The most important thing about this government is that the parliamentary sovereignty is resurfacing. Parliament is no longer playing a second fiddle role in the state affairs as seen before 2008 elections. The committee appointed by President, Asif Ali Zardari, for looking into the 17th amendment is also working. If the 17th Amendment is rendered null and void or repealed, it would establish the parliamentary sovereignty in Pakistan once and for all which is part and parcel of democratic form of government.


(2) MILITARY IS BACK TO BARRACKS:-

Pakistan is fortunate to have returned to democracy after long spells of direct and indirect military rule. The military has taken charge of its constitutional role –to defend Pakistani borders. The incumbent chief of Army Staff, General Ashfaque Parvaiz Kiyani is fully cooperative to the government in power. He looks like a responsible person who would not disrupt the government. On the other hand, the people of Pakistan are also in no mood to see any more martial rule or military intervention in state affairs. They are fed up of military long boots. Hence, it is expected that the period of martial laws and military interventions is over. If these expectations come true, we are on a road to become democratic for keeps.


(3) INDEPENDENT JUDICIARY:-

Ultimately, the Black-Coat Movement that had started in November 2007,succeeded to bring an end to political interference in judicial matters and making judiciary independent of any external force. Independent judiciary serves as the guardian of constitution in democratic form of government. It puts check on unconstitutional and extra constitutional practices of not only the government but also the political and economic institutions. The incumbent Chief Justice Iftikhar Muhammad Chaudhry has gained popularity because of his being honest, committed and dedicated as the Chief Justice of Pakistan. His services as the Chief Justice of Pakistan are commendable. And if Pakistani political system continued to have such an independent judiciary and qualified Chief Justices, it goes without saying that democracy has established its roots in the political system of Pakistan.


(4) INTERNATIONAL SUPPORT:-

The current democratic system in Pakistan is also enjoying the support of international community. Due to Pakistan's role as an ally of the US in the war on terror, Pakistani government is widely assisted by the important players of international politics. By saying that Pakistan is no longer a threat to India, the President Asif Ali Zardari, has taken an initiative as a Confidence Building Measure to establishing a regional peace and cooperation. The organisations like European union have also shown their interest to build bilateral relations with Pakistan. The international support and cooperation are very important things in this interdependent world.



PROSPECTS OF DEMOCRACY IN PAKISTAN

All the indicators, discussed above, suggest that the democracy in Pakistan has established its roots. The elected people's being in power, Supremacy of parliament, cooperation among the major political parties, Independent and active judiciary, constitutional role played by the military, Support of International community to this democratic setup and infrastructure are some of those auspicious signs which foretell the bright future of Pakistan as a democratic state. The political parties and leaders will have to play an important role so as to avoid any future intervention in state affairs on the part of the military. Some one has rightly said that:

'' Dreams of the future rely
on the work plan of today''.


If the parties, parliament and the judiciary continued to rule the roost, the future of Pakistan is really bright as a democratic state. Certainly, there are some dents in current political system but democracy is a system of government that believes in evolution not revolution. It is a slow and steady process. If the government of Pakistan, political parties, judiciary , parliament and the people of Pakistan work in collaboration with one another and perform their constitutional and responsible roles, the day is not much away when Pakistan would become one of the greatest democratic states of the world.



SOME IMPORTANT RECOMMENDATIONS

The government will have to put emphasis on the education.

Free and Independent Judiciary will have to be maintained.

Responsible media will also have to contribute to the development of democracy in Pakistan.

Political parties will have to continue cooperation and play a positive role.

The people of Pakistan will have to vote only those people who work not only in letters and words but also in spirits. They should know that their vote can change the destiny of Pakistan.

Corruption will have to be eliminated with dispatch. It is an evil that is eating into the vitals of Pakistani society and politics.



CONCLUSION:-

Democracy can flourish successfully in Pakistan if its evolutionary process is not interrupted and the Government and the people of Pakistan make dedicated and committed efforts followed by genuine thirst for establishing democracy in the country once and for all. The people in power will have to understand the value of the votes of the people in the streets. The factors that have caused the democratic downslide in Pakistan need to be addressed with full attention. If they continued to be unaddressed and rulers' wishes for the aggrandizement of their power and pelf continued to be unleashed, we will continue to regress and suffer to make headways. It is rightly said that:

''If we don't learn lessons from
history, history will repeat itself''.


Doing nothing at this critical juncture is not an option at all. If our history repeated itself, we will again be pushed to be subjected to crippling and trampling military boots either, or we will have to suffer at the hands of corrupt ruling elite who abuse their power for selfish ends. Lets hope that the current elected government will work in the right direction and the people of Pakistan will continue to determine the fate of their rulers and more importantly the destiny of PAKISTAN.


Written and Compiled by:
RAFIQUE AHMED KHOKHAR
Candidate css-2010
email:-civilservant4u@yahoo.com
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Old Thursday, September 17, 2009
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hi,

clicked to open ur thread so that i cud learn something new not to judge ur writing. but it was a good effort.
keep it up


regards!
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Old Monday, September 21, 2009
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Your effort is good and also wording and sentence structure is good, Your essay can fetch passing marks in exam. Almas ruby suggestion is reasonable, needs something unique from others.
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