Will Pakistan’s Anna Hazare stand up?
BESIDES terrorism and poverty, Pakistan and India are suffering from the same issue of corruption. For the information of your readers, I reproduce below a paragraph from the news item published in an Indian newspaper about 73-year-old Indian civil rights activist Anna Hazare who broke his 97 hours ‘fast unto death’ after the Indian government accepted his demands regarding the anti-corruption law bill:
“Anna Hazare’s 97 hours fast to ensure the passage of the Jan Lokpal bill at Delhi, not only shook the government, but also gave a boost to civil rights groups and activists in the city. Over 1,200km away in Mumbai, Azad Maidan became the vortex of activity for over 5,000 people, who converged there in support of the movement. Apart from Bollywood stars and glitterati, activists and citizens also flocked in large numbers.
“Even while Hazare broke his fast, the euphoria of what many are calling ‘a people’s victory’, continues to exult.”
But there is basic difference in the political and judicial arena of the two countries. In India, courts authoritatively summons politicians, army chief and any influential person no matter in what cases they are wanted by the courts. Unfortunately, in Pakistan, our judiciary’s verdicts are disobeyed and thrown in the dustbins.
The paragraph published in the Indian newspaper says a lot about the strong democracy taking root in our neighbourhood.
Only civil society can save our country from corruption, injustices, lawlessness, poverty, unemployment and internal and external threats being faced by Pakistan. Will Pakistan’s Anna Hazare, please, stand up?
M. RAFIQUE ZAKARIA