Shame On You Chief Minister Hoti!

By Yasser Latif Hamdani

ANP’s NWFP government is fighting the onslaught of terror and even those who disagree with its politics and its past  have rallied behind it all over Pakistan.   We at PTH support all steps in the right direction  and therefore this morning I wrote an article welcoming ANP’s suggestion of changing Pakistan’s name.  Democratic politics requires old configurations, compromises and coalitions re-align themselves along new political realities.   Alas I knew that it was too good to be true and by evening ANP sparked off a divisive controversey of a very different nature which revealed the true pettiness of this party and its politicians.

But before I come to the topic,  allow me to digress.   I recently received as a gift the “Diaries of Field Marshall Ayub Khan”.  At the start of the diary there is an album of our first military ruler with world dignitaries,  leading figures of the time,  Jackie Kennedy and India’s first Prime Minister Jawarharlal Nehru. Nehru by far looked most at home and interested in Pakistan.  There is a picture of Nehru surveying the materials being used in the construction of Islamabad and another picture with Ayub Khan giving Nehru a freshly plucked rose for his tunic etc etc.  And there it was Nehru placing flowers over a grave with the caption “Pandit Nehru at Quaid-e-Azam’s grave”.   Contrary to the myth,  Advani was not the first leader to visit Jinnah’s grave,  Nehru was, except there wasn’t a Mausoleum as yet.  

 Nor was the picture the first time Nehru visited Jinnah’s grave.   Wolpert in his book “Nehru a Tryst With Destiny” mentions  that Nehru visited Jinnah’s grave in the 1950s as well and then went over, along with Indira, to have lunch with Fatima Jinnah.     Needless to say that in that last one decade before partition, Jinnah and Nehru were not enamored with each other.    Nehru was extremely bitter about Jinnah and even at Jinnah’s death, he wrote “I have been very angry with him over the last few years”.   However Jawaharlal Nehru showed his class by paying the proper tribute to his erstwhile rival and one time comrade by bringing flowers to his grave.  In doing so he also showed Pakistanis that he was not an enemy of theirs but a friend – even if it was only partly true.

Now compare this to what happened today in Karachi at the NFC moot.  The near customary visit of the Chief Ministers to the Quaid’s Mazar this year saw only three chief ministers – from Punjab, Sindh and Balochistan.  The Chief Minister of  NWFP decided to make a point by not going.    Interestingly it is said that the only other leader in power who never visited Jinnah’s grave was General Zia.   That General Zia came from a family of Majlis-e-Ahrar is the kind of stuff legends are made of.   Others say that Zia didn’t go because he knew what he was doing to Pakistan was wrong but that is too good to be true.

Pakistan today needs unity.   The enemy of Jinnah’s Pakistan and Bacha Khan’s Pakhtunkhwa is the same.    Yet the Chief Minister of NWFP and his party are so petty and shameless that they absented themselves from a customary visit to Jinnah’s grave- as customary as the flag hoisting ceremony.  What next?  Will he also take off the father of the nation’s portrait from his office?   Or stop saluting the flag?  It is perfectly alright he does so on a personal level but what would that achieve  given his stature as the chief minister of a province of Pakistan ? 

How ironic,  because as mainly regional leaders Bacha Khan and his brother were not even direct rivals of Mr. Jinnah.   Infact Rajmohan Gandhi quotes Bacha Khan as saying that when he visited Jinnah in Karachi Jinnah got up and embraced Bacha Khan and then said “today Pakistan is complete” and gave 200 charkas for the social work of Khudai Khidmatgars.   And even earlier, it was Mr. Jinnah who had pressed Viceroy Irwin to release Ghaffar Khan and appoint him as a representative from NWFP to Roundtable Conference in London.

 While Jinnah himself had nothing to do with Bacha Khan’s incarceration following his collusion with Fakir of Ipi during the latter’s revolt against Pakistan,  if that is the reason that ANP holds a grudge against the father of the nation, then perhaps we would have to investigate whether Omar Abdullah refuses to visit monuments dedicated to Nehru because his grandfather was dismissed and imprisoned by Nehru directly.   

Pakistan is waging a war against extremists.   Amir Haider Hoti is the Chief Minister of a Pakistani province.   He cannot hope to win this war, unless all of Pakistan is behind him.   Today his party sits in government with the same party whose founder – Zulfikar Ali Bhutt0- imprisoned and tortured  Wali Khan and Asfandyar Wali Khan.    If the pettiness shown by ANP in Karachi today was due to some principle of revenge,   perhaps ANP should be principled enough to distance itself from the PPP as well.

Shame on you Hoti!   Shame on you for your theatrics when your province burns.  You’ve truly proved right Maulana Azad’s characterization of Khan brothers in his book “India Wins Freedom”.



Filed under Pakistan

32 responses to “Shame On You Chief Minister Hoti!

  1. well the NWFP government was initially going to boycott this meeting and decided at the last minute (Tuesday) to attend on Thursday after the PM promised them the $10 billion that they were owed in arrears from the centre . So perhaps there was some other commitment on Wednesday rather than a deliberate snub.

  2. Hossp

    Nawaiwaqt generation speaks…Witch hunt starts… 🙂
    This sets the bar too low. Going to mazar should never be the litmus test.

    I think you also need to know little bit about Hoti’s background. He comes from a family that was never in Ghaffar Khan’s camp before the partition. So he is technically not a Khudai Khadmatgar.

    Btw, I visited the Mazar when I was barely 8 years old and that was my first and the last visit. I don’t plan to visit the Mazar ever again.I visited Gandhi ki Samdhi when I was in my early 20s…
    Me traitor now?

  3. YLH

    Dear Hossp uncle,

    You are not chief minister of a province and you are not making a point. As for going to Gandhi’s samadhi, I don’t consider you a traitor but do think that it was indicative of early senility.

    Ofcourse I don’t consider anyone a traitor… I do consider Hoti a fool for reasons mentioned above.

    Btw y ou were always wrong about me being part of nawai waqt generation. My objection to ANP and Bacha Khan’s family has never been based on some Islamic ideology or nationalism…they were totally wrong about history and I don’t see any reason to change my view.

    I think my view of history has been accepted universally as a legitimate point of view … much to chagrin of both the Nawai Waqt generation and ANP types.

  4. YLH

    Also nothing sets the bar as low 😉 as supporting an ultra-nationalist crook like Shireen Mazari.

  5. YLH

    It is akin really to state governors of Virginia and Georgia refusing to visit the Lincoln Memorial…as a deliberate snub 150 years later…because their grandfathers were probably generals in the Army of the South. Would they be traitors ? No. Do they want to secede ? No. Would they be petty? Yes definitely.

    And then imagine if at the same time there was an insurgency in the South. :).

  6. Milind Kher

    As an unbiased observer, considering that unity was the need of the hour, Hoti should have gone for the visit, his personal misgivings notwithstanding.

    Had he done that, he would have risen above being only a politician and shown himself to be a statesman.

  7. Hossp

    Bhatije Hamdani,
    Me supporting Shirin Mazari? Not at all. But I don’t mind outing a CIA agent masquerading as journalists. WSJ needs to make sure next time they send a clean guy!

    You can move out of Lahore, but can never take Nawaiwaqt out of a lahori! 🙂

  8. Hossp

    Don’t mind HER outing a CIA agent masquerading as journalist!

  9. AZW

    Hossp Ji:

    I think you have made up your mind regarding Mr. Rosenberg as a CIA agent. That’s completely your prerogative. I will point out that the brilliant outing of Mr. Rosenberg by Mr. Rauf Klasra was a rather rambling report that talked about Mr. Rosenberg, and quickly veered off towards (who else?) Blackwater, with a honourary mention of Mossad was made towards the end. To round things off, an informed opinion of General Mirza Aslam Beg, who was never shy of giving the most outrageously (may I call) insipid statements in the past, nicely squared our brilliant report off.

    I am taking a liberty of reproducing the whole journalistic masterpiece below for those readers who may look at it and decide on the merits of this brilliant reporting.

    ISLAMABAD – Agents of notorious spy agencies are using journalistic cover to engage themselves in intelligence activities in NWFP and FATA, sources informed The Nation on Wednesday.

    To the surprise and shock of many, top bosses of Federally Administrated Tribal Area (FATA) Secretariat are allegedly feeding these journalists with secret reports and information regarding Pak Army and militant groups operating there.

    Matthew Rosenberg, South Asian correspondent of Wall Street Journal, has been spotted travelling frequently between Washington, Islamabad, Peshawar and New Delhi during the last couple of months. His frequent and secret meetings with Secretary Law and Order FATA Secretariat, Capt (Retd) Tariq Hayat Khan, and Additional Chief Secretary FATA, Habib Khan, have raised several questions.

    The sources alleged that both Tariq Hayat Khan and Habib Khan were equally responsible in facilitating and feeding Matthew about secret documents regarding Pak Army and sensitive information regarding ongoing operation against militants.

    Despite the fact that Foreign Office and Interior Ministry have warned foreign journalists and foreign workers of NGOs not to visit NWFP and FATA, Matthew in a clear violation of this warning recently held a detailed meeting with Habib Khan that lasted for two hours and 17 minutes.

    When contacted, Matthew Rosenberg confirmed to this scribe from New Delhi on phone that he had been meeting with Tariq Hayat Khan and Habib Khan since long, as he enjoyed good terms with them.

    “Yes I have been in Islamabad and Peshawar many times and Tariq Hayat Khan and Habib Khan are also close friends of mine. However, let me tell you that I am not working on any hidden agenda,” Matthew said.

    According to an official of law enforcement agency, who requested anonymity, Matthew was working as chief operative of CIA and Blackwater in Peshawar. The law enforcement agencies, he said, had also traced Matthew’s links with Israel’s intelligence agency Mosad as well.

    Matthew has also tried to hire some individuals from Peshawar, Dera Ismail Khan and Mianwali, and on refusal threatened some of them of dire consequences.

    When contacted, Additional Chief Secretary FATA Habib Khan confirmed that he held meeting with Mathew in his office. Habib said Mathew was interested in getting details of militants, tribes and strategy of Pak Army operation against militants. “I refused to share details with him,” Habib said.

    Journalists around the world, especially in Pakistan, condemn intelligence agencies for using journalistic cover, which, they say, makes their job difficult.

    The CIA and other intelligence organisations around the world have in the past denied disguising intelligence operatives as journalists.

    According to some media reports, 202 persons affiliated with notorious private military contractor Blackwater, later renamed as Xe Services LLC, arrived Islamabad on Tuesday through a PIA flight.

    Former chief of army staff, Gen (Retd) Mirza Aslam Beig, has claimed that former president Pervez Musharraf had given Blackwater a green signal to carry out its “terrorist operations” in the cities of Islamabad, Rawalpindi, Peshawar and Quetta.

    According to “IntelNews.Org” that quoted former NSA analyst and US navy intelligence officer Wayne Madsen as saying, “The CIA has deployed at least two operatives posing as journalists in several world hotspots after 9/11.” These two operatives, both US Special Forces veterans, were subcontracted to the CIA by private mercenary company Blackwater.

    However, the recent record shows that this is not so. Director of Belgium’s State Security Service (SV/SE) in last February said that his agents required expanded investigative powers to combat the increasing presence of foreign spies in the country, many of whom operate under journalistic cover around the EU’s headquarters.

  10. Junaid

    Hoti made a good point by telling the Punjabi big brother that NWFP has long been misused as a backyard laboratory by the Pakistani elite for their Islamist experiments for which now every one is paying in blood.

    Last of all paying a visit to the tomb of a dead man should not be a test of patriotism.

    Last of all, NWFP joined Pakistan based on certain conditions which have never been met.

    So ……

  11. Gorki

    “However Jawaharlal Nehru showed his class by paying the proper tribute to his erstwhile rival and one time comrade by bringing flowers to his grave”

    As an admirer of Nehru, I admit that before 1947, he lived in the shadow of several great men, but was politically inexperienced and made some major poltical mistakes. Not accepting MAJ’s offer for a coalition in 1937 was one of them.

    However, he grew much taller in stature after 1947. One of his major legacy was to leave behind a firmly secular polity in India.
    In some ways, he became the torchbearer of MAJ’s own vision; that of the MAJ who was once called the best ambassador of Hindu Muslim unity.

    The above gesture was no doubt classy; perhaps even an appropriate acknowledgement of the debt to his forerunner.


  12. Majumdar

    Gorki sb,

    I wud put it the other way round.

    The best of JLN was 1937-50 esp 1946-50 (scuttling of CMP to the Constt of India) barring the unfortunate intervention in Kashmir . After that, it was all downhill…….


  13. yasserlatifhamdani

    Junaid mian,

    Could you enlighten us as to what those conditions were and who put them up? You may visit my 5 part “NWFP History” series for some clarity that you desperately need…

    No one is questioning Hoti mian’s patriotism or putting up a random test of patriotism. Mr. Jinnah’s prestige certainly does not need some hypocritical visit by a two bit chief minister of a small regional political party, especially when people of Nehru and Nelson Mandela have visited his grave and paid glowing tributes to him and his legacy…

    Consider however the stupidity of this move… from the angle of real politik. PPP, MQM and ANP are fighting against a right-wing ultra-nationalist nawai-waqt crowd (which Hossp promotes and protects)… and ANP has given a very reasonable suggestion about the change of the official name of our republic… which every reasonable Pakistani should support…

    Why then strengthen the hands of those by giving them an excuse … when the NWFP CM knows that those who will abuse him from The Nation and Nawai Waqt probably don’t give a damn about Jinnah themselves but are doing only to strengthen their right wing agenda.

  14. Hossp


    I don’t see any problem with the report. Instead of quickly rambling off, he in fact devoted 10 paragraph to Mathew and the rest four to other subjects.
    Anyway, I have lost interest in the story. Similar reports appear in newspapers around the world all the time and I don’t hold Pakistani papers to standards higher than the rest of the world.

    I have made my position clear and have no interest in continuing this debate.

  15. YLH

    Hossp uncle,

    Your friends in The Nation did not mention Hoti’s decision not to go to the Mausoleum interestignly.
    There was however a half page ad by NWFP Government with Hoti face on it in The Nation.

    That proves two things:

    1. Concerns of the Nawai Waqt generation are not the same as a Lahori like me.

    2. Pakistan’s rightwing tends to sell their souls for a few ads and revenue.

    So I humbly request you retract your statement.

  16. YLH

    Gorki sb,

    I must say it gave me reason to pause and re-think my reaction to Churchill’s comment to Nehru …

  17. Majumdar


    I must say it gave me reason to pause and re-think my reaction to Churchill’s comment to Nehru …

    What was Churchill’s comment to Nehru?


  18. Onyx

    Afghan go home!

  19. rex minor

    @Yasser Latif Hamdani.
    As an outsider I am not with it? Why such an excitement about a visit of a Pakistani to a Pakistani leader’s grave. Was it the day for the deads as we have it in Europe? The Pushtoons usually insults their enemies by taking their bodies out of the grave and burn it. The protocal observed by Mr Nehru is a norm. If you are angry about something , it has been diluted with your fuss aboutYour digression is very forceful. By the way it was a mistake for the military to bring the capital to Rawalpindi/Islamabad. The military can longer protect themselves in cities. They should better leave the luxury of the cantonments built by the Brits. and go to the Barracks well outside the cities leaving civilian population safe with a Police Force only to tackle the criminal element. The Pakistan military cannot conduct campaigns against its own population and return to the cantonments and find safety. They are likely to meet the same fate as the British did. By the way why do’nt you publish the photos you mentioned in your article?

  20. yasserlatifhamdani


    In the future don’t misquote me… and before you make ignorant statements… like Mr. Jinnah did not have any children of his own blah blah…. do some research.

  21. rex minor

    Mr Hamdani,
    You certainly have a big mouth! If you would allow your intellect to go ahead of your emotions then you would hesitate to use unworthy names. You also need to learn more about the published and non published life of Mr Jinnah and his relations with his family including his daughter. Perhaps you would publish the photos you quoted in your article or do you expect “ignorant” people around the world to take your word for it? Die dulci fruimini.

  22. rex minor

    Mr Hamdani,
    Just for your inknowledge the Pushtoons do not normally visit dead people’s graves, unless prior to death they were declared holy and saints. Mr Jinnah does not fall into this category. This tradition is even foreign in Europe and Pakistan should be well advised to create a tomb for the unknown soldier rathe than ushering visiters to political leaders tombs in various cities of the country.

  23. yasserlatifhamdani

    Is this guy for real? Or is he just another fool..

    I think I know a bit more about Mr. Jinnah and his relations with his family than you can imagine based on your little knowledge….

    Many of Mr. Jinnah’s relatives are my friends…. and I know the entire family inside out. I also know that Jinnah’s supposed estrangement from his daughter is largely exaggerated … and denied by Dina Jinnah… who was a guest of honor in the 2004 Pakistan-India series in Lahore.

    In the future before you mouth off like a fool… research the person you are talking to. I don’t give a damn what you think Pashtoons do or don’t do…

    As for the pictures… I mentioned they can be found in “Diaries of Field Marshall Ayub Khan published by Oxford University Press” …

  24. Milind Kher


    What kind of Shia was Mr Jinnah? An Aga Khani or an Ithna Asheri?

    I understand that the was a Khoja, but then Khojas are both.

  25. YLH


    Jinnah was born Aga Khani but converted to Ithna Ashari in 1901 after a dispute with Aga Khan over his sister Mariam Peerbhoy’s marriage to a non-Aga Khani.

    The affidavit signed by Fatima Jinnah and Liaqat Ali Khan stated that Mr. Jinnah was a shia khoja mohammaden.

    Despite that a court under Zia ruled that Jinnah was neither a shia nor a sunni but was a Muslim.

  26. Milind Kher

    Thanks for the info.

    Inspite of belonging to a minority within a minority, and I believe, not too much of a knowledge of Urdu, he was able to achieve his target of an independent homeland.

    A tribute to not only his capability, but also how driven he was.

  27. yasserlatifhamdani

    rex … saying that i dont care about what you think puhtoons do is not the same as not caring what the pushtoons do. get a class in comprehension.

  28. rex minor

    I know you are a smart Alec! In the meantime
    I have read several of your articles in this Blog now and my initial assessment is that you are an analogue generation of 80’s, who went over to the US to learn but have not got the slightest understanding of peoples in your part of the world nor of their history. You give me the impression of a street agitator who is prepared to commit to shouting and violence if need be, and this explains your lack of experience most probably also with the Govt. apparatus. Like a simple fool you criticise the military chief in your country for giving a statement on patriotism. Of all the people you should know that you have written enough in your articles which could be construed as unpatriotic and earn you the label of a disloyal citizen of the country where you live.
    Mr Jinnah is revered in Pakistan on account of his legecy of creating with others an independent muslim state where the muslims could openly and without fear practice their religion. You are deliberately taking a stand against this belief and are prepared to quote anything you can lay your hands on some published material which suupports your theory.
    Although I have now spent more time than I had originally planned for Reuters Blog, I must say that I genuinely feel very sorry for you and other youth like you in your country, who grew up under military rule, went overseas to study and did not have any solid background within their families. I hope that you will restrain yourself and allow the democracy to take hold firmly and without further military intervention. You should also know that Pakistan does not have a national army and unless it is reformed the life of a weaker civilian Govt. combined with a hostile Press is usually very limited. Your direct attack on a military leader statement is not a norm of democracy but could trigger off a reaction by the young Turks and an army take over!
    Bonam Noctem

  29. yasserlatifhamdani

    Your comments as usual don’t make sense … Now you’ve chosen to attack me because I proved you wrong about your earlier assertions.

    I stand for Muslims and whoever else to practise their religion freely. It is freaks like you who want to impose Mullah raj on Muslims… which is something that Jinnah consistently opposed through out his life.

    “Of all the people you should know that you have written enough in your articles which could be construed as unpatriotic and earn you the label of a disloyal citizen of the country where you live.”

    If Fatima Jinnah can be construed as “disloyal” for standing up for people’s rights… then I will willingly embrace that label. But most people know better and know that the fake right wing nationalism that passes for patriotism these days is not true Pakistaniat…. I stand for the real Pakistan.

    My initial assessment -based on a few of your comments- is that you are a crook… who lacks clarity and proves the statement “little knowledge is dangerous” true many times over.

  30. Gorki

    Rex minor:

    I found it very amusing that you say:

    “but have not got the slightest understanding of peoples in your part of the world nor of their history”
    especially since you had not too long ago boldly declared that Pushtoons were all set to sweep down from their mountain strong holds to conquer all South Asia, a rather fantastic claim demonstrating your own lack of any serious thought or understanding of issues and peoples of South Asia.

    You also sound very condescending (and even mildly offensive) when you further wrote:
    “Like a simple fool you criticise the military chief in your country for giving a statement on patriotism. Of all the people you should know that you have written enough in your articles which could be construed as unpatriotic and earn you the label of a disloyal citizen of the country where you live.”

    What are you implying? That free speech is a sole province of those who live in Europe and is too complicated for South Asians?

    You further go on rather boorishly as follows:

    “I must say that I genuinely feel very sorry for you and other youth like you in your country, who grew up under military rule, went overseas to study and did not have any solid background within their families. I hope that you will restrain yourself and allow the democracy to take hold firmly and without further military intervention.”

    This last patronizing paragraph is clearly over the top.
    You have taken pains to let us know how ‘things are done in Europe where you live’ and quoted examples from ancient history demonstrating your knowledge of an obscure Germanic tribal victory over a couple of Roman legions. Yet with your above remarks, you demonstrate that resident of Europe or not, you don’t have much class or manners.

    You accuse YLH of having learnt nothing but what does it say about you when you make blanket statements about another and his relationship with his family without knowing anything about him?
    Leave aside politics; didn’t someone ever tell you to that it is very crude to make personal attacks on public forums on people whose views you disagree with?

    YLH may or may not be right in airing his views above but he has enough courage and patriotism to live and carry on his work in his land he claims to love. In spite of its daily violence, he has refused to be cowed down and is raising his family in the land where he once wrote ‘his father sleeps’.
    He is a mover and a shaker; right or wrong, he is no armchair theoretician.
    That sir, is more than I can say about you.

  31. rex minor

    Mr Gorki, Mr Hamdani
    I have no qualms about your comments. This is your opinion and is based on your judgement and could fall under the “freedom of speach”. You did not need my background for this. Likewise, I do not have to know the complete background of you gentlemen. Do you really believe that calling a person that you have not seen a “crook” is representative of journalism in your country and not construed in legal sernse a personal attack. Do you also believe that when a writer uses violent language about other personalities in the cpountry and then states on “Reuters Blog” and I quote” I do’nt care a damn what you think Pushtoons do or do’nt do” can be regarded as a serious jounalist, who is familiar with the cultures of different ethnic groups in his adopted land. In case he has the knowledge but not sensitive is more serious. You do not have to agree with me but I would rate him at best as a third class young journalist who is violently trying to go up the ladder and leaving a lot of dust and broken china behind. He is doing no service to his country. I am not here to advise or judge others and I have tried not to step on others’ feet. Is it too much to expect the norms in Reuters Blog? Nevertheless,I apologise for any comments that might have upset your personal feelings or national pride. This was not my intention! With regard to my forecast that the Pushtoon civilisation will spread over the next century throughout south east Asia still stands. I did not use the word “conquer” nor did I forecast a military adventure. Regards to you both.