Gilani’s exit and democracy
AFTER facing strong criticism for illegally sticking to his post and issuing irresponsible statements, the convicted prime minister, once the heartthrob of people, has been shown the door by the apex court.
It is heartening to see that the democracy lover has been dethroned through a transparent inbuilt process of democracy.
Mr Yousuf Raza Gilani was a diehard lover of democracy. Unfortunately, things did not turn up according to his wishes and he was sent home by the court for perpetual defiance of the court’s orders.
To ensure overall health, some ailing organs of a body must be removed by surgeons. The present justice system has ensured the continuity of the democratic system. Hats off to the judiciary for keeping its heads high in making tough decisions. These decisions will definitely pave the way for democracy in the country.
Harmony among institutions
ON June 19, the Supreme Court disqualified an elected prime minister on contempt charges. The prime minister claimed that the president of Pakistan enjoys constitutional immunity; hence during his tenure criminal or corruption cases cannot be opened against him.
The judiciary and the government should respect each other’s constitutional jurisdiction and avoid a confrontation in the best interest of Pakistan. If the government and the judiciary continue their hostility, the third power can benefit from this precarious situation. We know from past experiences that the army ruled Pakistan more than three decades.
The mainstream parties ought to help normalise the situation. Unfortunately, they do not do so. They are fighting each other for their vested interests through backdoor diplomacy.
I urge civil society, lawyers and the mainstream political parties to play their role to bring prosperity, tolerance and fraternity in our country, so that Pakistan can become a real Islamic democratic country.
SHAFIQ AHMED BURIRO
THIS is apropos of Nasir Iqbal’s news report ‘Son appears before CJ over scam allegation’ (June 6). It is commendable that Chief Justice Iftikhar Mohammad Chaudhry did not support his son, which is an act worth mentioning. It is hard for a father who can use his power to prove his son innocent to see his son in the doldrums and still give priority to his duty. This earns him plaudits and shows great integrity.
It is my appeal to Pakistani politicians to learn a lesson from him.
Undoubtedly, if all Pakistani politicians start thinking like Mr Chaudhry, soon the rate of corruption, money laundering and injustices will go down.
This is with reference to the news that the ex-prime minister has shifted to the Presidency; it is his second or third move within a span of a week. What is the reason that has been pushing him to the presidency, particularly when the Supreme Court has once declared that the President House cannot be used for political activities.
This ruling has also been ignored. Other possible reasons could be the luxury or security or belongingness. If the former prime minister is people’s representative, then he should go to his constituency and meet the common man, for once. If, however, it is for luxury and security, then he can move to the all protected Bilawal House!
AS a respite from incessant power outages, sweltering temperatures and water shortage worries for Pakistanis, the Supreme Court sent a wave of glee among the people by catching a big-shot.
Yousuf Raza Gilani has been sent packing for not obeying court orders. He blatantly refused to write a letter to the Swiss government for opening pending cases against President Asif Zardari and hence was found guilty of contempt of court.
This big step of the Supreme Court against, constitutionally, the most powerful office-bearer of the country has sent a clear message to all others, “You can be held accountable, so be careful!”
Let’s expect that the next prime minister will act according to the orders of the court by writing a letter to the Swiss government as soon as possible, which is the crux behind Mr Gilani’s contempt of court.
The people of Pakistan have now got a much-needed trust in their judiciary that their rights would be protected even if the culprit is someone influential.
So we hope that our courts will keep up the good work and continue to be the saviour of the people and the country.
THIS refers to your editorials, ‘PM’s disqualification’ and ‘The way forward’ (June 20 and 21) in which you have touched upon matters pertaining to a confrontation between the judiciary and the executive.
As a voter I feel that your statement, “In disqualifying a sitting democratically elected prime minister, the Supreme Court has taken an extraordinary — and unfortunate step,’ has touched a chord in the hearts of all voters in the country.
You say, “Even if the outcome had been the same at least the court would not have taken on the role of directly disqualifying an elected prime minister.
By doing so it has both disrupted an existing democratic setup and set a worrying precedent for the future.” This speaks volumes of the judiciary’s role in the realm of politics.
The other editorial, ‘The way forward,’ once again highlights the public dilemma, “Disturbing as it has been to watch the judiciary unseat an elected prime minister… it should be a sobering moment for the ruling coalition.” The people rejoiced at the decision to see the prime
minister go for bad governance but that was not the reason why the judiciary asked him to leave.
However, that is a decision for the people’s court to make and the judiciary has no say in it. Institutional and legal concerns have their place, but they should not be focused on the exclusion to the country’s broader needs at a given time, in this case political stability and the
need to strengthen the democratic process.
SARDAR AHMED SHAH JAN