16th March 2009 was a great day in Pakistan’s history. We managed to defeat the forces of status quo and established for ourselves an independent judiciary. It seems like a life time ago though- and it is only 20th of April, 2009.
Now that the judiciary is threatened by a mad man called Sufi Muhammad of the “BANNED” TSNM, it is time for Chief Justice of Pakistan to take stern action against this clown and bring his position to bear upon our cowardly government and those “Conquerors of Islamabad” in Rawalpindi to take action against this brigand and enemy of the state soon! The first step would be to strike down the unconstitutional nizam-e-batil masquerading as “Nizam-e-Adl” right now! There is nothing Islamic about this law. Islam does not stand for tribal warlords of dubious origin, crooks, cranks and mad men really becoming “ulema-e-deen” and riding over our heads in this shameful manner while the state- whose social contract it is to protect all its citizens- sits idly by.
The present scheme of the constitution says – and ladies and gentlemen of our legislature -provincial and national- you have sworn by this constitution- make no mistake about it : Pakistan is a federal and democratic state to be known as the Islamic Republic of Pakistan. Therefore any conception of an Islamic state that is either not federal or is undemocratic is by letter of the law which all of you chaps have hailed as the “Islamic constitution” of Pakistan unconstitutional. This is the overriding nature and fundamental structure which cannot be altered (unless ofcourse a new constituent assembly sits down) . Therefore some rabid cleric’s pronouncement that the Supreme Court – the ultimate federal arbiter of people’s rights in this federal state is unIslamic, is in of itself a declaration of war on this state, especially when this fellow leads a group of armed thugs. Ofcourse the fact that some cleric can get up and say that the constitution says nothing will be against Quran and Sunnah and then call Supreme Court and democracy as it is practised under the present constitution “unconstitutional”, it is a poignant commentary on the insistence of people like Bhutto in making “Islamic provisions” a part of the constitution instead of practically implementing universal and Islamic ideals of justice and equality in reality. (If Pakistan falls to the Taliban god forbid, I do hope that Abdul Hafeez Pirzada- the self proclaimed author/father of Pakistan’s Islamic constitution and the host of many a hedonistic party on his lavish farmhouse in Islamabad’s outskirts- is made to clean the streets till he grows a beard and repents for all that he ought to repent for).
The current president of Pakistan, the symbol of our federation, is a self seeking, manipulative and characterless fellow. I for one repent for ever having put my faith in him and that party that claims to be the party of Benazir Bhutto- who for all her faults was a liberal at heart (I too am ready to clean the streets till I grow a beard provided I get to hurl choicest abuses at Pirzada in his earshot). Apparently the fascists of this “peoples” party can’t do the right thing in Swat but they are up in arms in Karachi when crushing the right to freedom of expression of the civil society as they did at the Shanakht festival. Oh I know- it is easier to beat up the artists, photographers and women. This abject surrender to a militant force is going to tear asunder what is left of this country. You can tell how strange a time we live in, when the only party making sense is MQM and the only leader with any clarity is Altaf Hussain.
So stand up now. Stand up before it is too late – before our state is gobbled up by these crazies. Let us not squander the benefits of our great revolution of 16th March. Let us now fight to defend it. And first and foremost, this requires the Chief Judge of this country to rise to the occasion.
POST SCRIPT: Is Pakistan worth preserving? I tell you it is and history will bear me out either way. We stand against this threat today – if we fall, the stakes are much higher for all you who are cheering on our gradual fall. People in India especially don’t understand what it is in store for them if Pakistan falls. We are- whether you like it or not or whether you feel Pakistan is a nuisance- your first line of defence. Pakistan – whatever its flaws- is a state with a government and economy which you have often used as leverage. If we fall, you will have to face these gureilla groups and non-state actors without any check or balance. Those who plot Pakistan’s disintegration, especially in India, or express glee better think again. What is bad for us, is worse for you!