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Posts from — April 2014

Falling one at a time: op-ed by Saroop Ijaz in The News, Apr 29, 2014

The writer is a lawyer.

We have for some time lost the ability to prevent murderous attacks, particularly on the courageous. However, now we are fast losing the capacity to even adequately condemn them.

It is no longer apathy. It is vile bile directed at the victim. To survive is an offence, unpatriotic. Hamid Mir was shot multiple times and battles for his life. Yet, the grievance of ‘defence and other analysts’ seemed, why he was not shot in the head, if it was a real attack. Who can argue with this cruel, foolish insensitivity? It was not only sadism; it was very acute masochism coming from quite a cross-section of the media. Issue-based differences aside, the courage and candour of Hamid Mir is beyond any doubt, and one sincerely prays for his wellbeing.

The line of reasoning goes somewhat like this, the often frothing in the mouth defence analyst begins with: the ISI did not do it and so stop the lying, treasonous, RAW-centred propaganda. Following it up with, had ISI done it, Mir would not have been alive, since the boys don’t miss. Then somewhat defensively implying, even, on the off chance that the ISI did it, do not hurt ‘national interest’ by saying it publicly. Finally making a comeback by implying Mir had it coming. We have heard this pattern of thought in different permutations before.

We do not know who did it, and yes, it can be one of any number of actors and a conclusive determination can only be made after investigation. The problem with responding to tragedy in Pakistan has become that we oscillate between incredible understatement and incredible overstatement. Now that the Judicial Commission is being formed, mud-slinging should cease.

However, the attack on Hamid Mir brought to light the fundamental confusion that plagues us, and indeed the platitudes that come with it. For example, ‘national interest’ should be paramount. ‘National institutions’ should not be attacked or maligned. Banal and stressing the obvious a bit too much.

The problem lies in definition. It seems the only things ‘national’ and ‘institutional’ are those related to the army. Those who are dealing in these clichés had no qualms in recently branding the presidency to be conspiring against the country or even now implying that the prime minister might not be completely sincere (presidency and parliament not ‘national’ enough or not sufficiently ‘institutional’?).

While judgement needs to be deferred till investigation is complete, yet it is time for introspection for the army and the ISI. The allegation against the premium institution did not seem as ridiculous as it ideally should have. Journalists have been picked up in the past, and this is not conjecture. Saleem Shahzad has died in ‘mysterious’ circumstances. Elections have been fixed in the past and people go ‘missing’ in Balochistan.

These are facts on record. This does not mean that we reach any conclusion, and take the Taliban’s word on denying the attack. It does mean that the ISI has image building to do (not hollow marketing spins, Zaid Hamids and Mubasher Luqmans), serious confidence building. In these times, the wish to be immune from criticism will not only invite more, it will also be counterproductive. Open yourself to free and fair investigation and regain the trust that ‘We’ the people so sincerely want to repose in you.

The Hamid Mir attack’s aftermath also saw a simmering schism reach the boiling point and become extremely public, pronounced among the Pakistani power elite; Big Media versus patriotic ‘national’ institutions (lest we forget how the ISPR’s version was the only version in the Kerry-Luger Bill and Memo days); the pro-jihad nationalist versus the pro-army nationalist (both hating democratic process and actors though).

Most dispiritingly: Big Media versus Big Media (insensitive and masochistic at the same time, since journalists from most of the media houses have been attacked by different actors at one point of time or the other). All these competing actors have previously been aligned. One could almost see signs of implosion in the Pakistani establishment. Maybe, however, the powerful have magical ways of making up between themselves.

And this makes the case of the ordinary journalist being more loyal to the crown all the sadder. The media tycoon, the general and the maulana are for the moment all competing for monopoly over defining ‘national interest’ and it is a mess. Yet they can effortlessly make up at any time, leaving the apologist look bad, and worse on his/her own.

The need for unity arises for the professional journalists and indeed all conscientious citizens. Hamid Mir is nearly as big as it gets and if you downplay the gravity of the attack, you sirs are making all of yours and ours houses unsafe. The tycoons and generals thrive on chaos as it is good for business; the courageous journalist in the trenches does not.

The mighty perpetrators of violence and their apologists come in different brands. However, their inarticulateness – owing largely to being bereft of facts – is a common thread. That makes them despise the vocal and the eloquent. Watching the apologia and idiocy on television after the attack on the eloquent and vocal Mir, one is reminded of the words of W H Auden from ‘August 1968’, “The Ogre does what ogres can, Deeds quite impossible for Man, But one prize is beyond his reach, The Ogre cannot master Speech. About a subjugated plain, Among its desperate and slain, The Ogre stalks with hands on hips, While drivel gushes from his lips.”

The speculations and allegations need to end. The demand should be singular and made in unison; the investigation needs to be done comprehensively, fairly, swiftly and the findings made public. Another report similar to the Saleem Shahzad commission, stopping short of saying really anything, should be unacceptable. The futility of asking for ‘investigation’ is not lost on one; however, we have to ask for it if for nothing else than to display that, while we may have lost the hope of getting justice, we have not lost the desire for it.http://www.thenews.com.pk/Todays-News-9-247009-Falling-one-at-a-time

April 29, 2014   No Comments

Revisiting Pakistan’s education policy : op-ed by S M Hali in Daily Times, Apr 29, 2014

The writer is a former group captain of PAF, who also served as air and naval attaché at Riyadh

Pakistan’s social and economic progress has been stinted. Its critics and well-wishers are united in the thought that to ensure social mobility and economic progress, Pakistan’s education policy needs to be revamped. The core of the problem lies in the fact that successive governments have failed to focus on education. Inconsistent educational policies, reduced budget outlays and lack of understanding of the problem have aggravated the issue. The country is faced with a spate of terrorist assaults but the various dispensations occupying the corridors of power have failed to take cognizance of the direct relationship between ignoring education and the aftermath of violence. Unable to find access to the private school chains, open only to the opulent, and being deprived of education at government run institutions, some of which exist on paper only, the majority of the poor are constrained to resort to the madrassas (seminaries), some of which are exploited by extremists to promote negative tendencies and churn out radicals, who become cannon fodder for terror mongers.

It has become imperative to restore the levelling effects of education since our current system of learning only reaffirms existing class inequalities and is serving to further widen the gap between the rich and the poor. To aspire for the creation of a healthy society, success in higher education for students from lower socioeconomic groups must be made an important policy goal. Article 25 A of the constitution, which has been touted by various political parties to garner electoral support, pertains to the right to education, stating that: “The state shall provide free and compulsory education to all children of the age of five to sixteen years in such manner as may be determined by law.”

In pursuance of this noble goal, a leaf can be taken from the raison d’être of the madrassas, which is to provide free education to millions across the nation. The government can make it mandatory for private educational institutions to reduce imbalance in society by providing free education to a certain percentage of underprivileged children. Simultaneously, in consonance with the above, a strong policy commitment is needed for social mobility through education. This can be addressed by having uniform curricula, a unified syllabus and compulsory free education for all Pakistani children.

According to the United Nations Development Project’s (UNDP’s) report, ‘Worldwide Trends in the Human Development Index (HDI) 1980-2010’, Pakistan is ranked at the 125th position with an HDI of 0.490. This is a worrying indicator for the national economy. In parallel, the high pace of technological advancements and the exponential rate of the information explosion have made the issue of sustainability more competitive and challenging. This alarming situation demands academia, professionals and policy makers to analyse the situation seriously and devise national strategies to meet the unprecedented challenges of the 21st century.

It is globally accepted that education plays a vital role in the development of a civilised society but today’s knowledge revolution has radically changed the concept of education. On the one hand, education empowers its citizens to meet the challenges of society head on and, on the other, it lays a sound foundation for the knowledge base of the youth, deflecting the macabre conspiracies of terrorism and extremist ideas through inculcating the principles of the quest for science and technology.

Taking cognizance of the fact that education comprises acquiring knowledge, skills, attitudes and values that will be a part of students’ lives, the ‘Alif Ailaan’ campaign is gathering research material and compiling data on education in the country in an effort to improve overall standards. It is endeavouring to empower parents, build political will for reform and help education providers do their jobs more effectively.

It is crucial that more organisations and the state take up the cudgels on behalf of the people of Pakistan since education also involves caring for the development of students’ intellect and emotional, social and physical growth but a knowledge revolution demands the re-orientation, re-organisation and re-construction of education. Time is already running out for the planners of Pakistan since it is the age of information and technology; our youth is likely to lag far behind their peers in other countries, even India, Sri Lanka and Bangladesh, unless we revisit the whole concept of education in Pakistan. If not, we will fail to produce the knowledge managers for today’s knowledge economy.

There is a dire need to revisit the educational policy of Pakistan, striking a balance between qualitative and quantitative aspects in all areas of education. While rethinking the strategy for education, it is vital to appreciate the pivotal position of a teacher, which signifies the crucial role teacher education can play in Pakistan. Unfortunately, teacher education programmes in the country have focused on methodology and strategies instead of enabling teachers to re-conceptualise basic educational issues. To revisit education strategies in Pakistan, teaching the teacher is as important as teaching the pupil.http://www.dailytimes.com.pk/opinion/29-Apr-2014/revisiting-pakistan-s-education-policy

April 29, 2014   No Comments

Judicial officers : edit in The News, Apr 29, 2014

Sometimes a threat to the independence of the judiciary can be more subtle and less obvious than the sackings and intimidation that were such a common feature of the Musharraf era. The judiciary derives its power and authority from being completely separated from and, in theory, immune to the charms of the executive. This way it can rule on cases of government overreach without having any stake in the increased power itself. A change in the National Judicial Policy, requested by the law ministry and accepted by the National Judicial Policy Making Committee, could make it slightly harder for the judiciary to resist government pressure. The amendment to the rules will now allow judicial officials to join the law ministry in executive posts. The blatant conflict of interest raised here is obvious. The law ministry is regularly appearing before the courts but now when it fights it cases it may also be seen as a prospective source of lucrative appointment. The committee, chaired by Chief Justice Tassaduq Hussain Jillani, noted the potential conflict but then waved it away by decreeing that the judicial officers who take up these executive postings will have to sever all ties from the judiciary.

The reasoning offered by the committee in favour of this rule change is specious. It does not reduce the potential for divided loyalties even if judges leave their postings after they receive their executive postings. The mere possibility that they may be offered a job could lead judicial officials to subconsciously side with the law ministry. Situations could also arise where the law ministry bribes officials with the lure of jobs to come. As an analogy, this is very similar to what had been happening with financial regulatory agencies in the US prior to its recession. Regulators knew that they had lucrative jobs waiting for them in the private sector – but only if they weren’t too nosy in their oversight and accountability of firms in the private sector. There didn’t need to be any explicit collusion or bribery because the system was already rigged where all the actors knew the part they had to play. Having the judiciary fall prey to the same temptation would be disastrous to the delivery of justice in the country. The National Judicial Policy Making Committee should recognise its error and take back this unnecessary change in policy.http://www.thenews.com.pk/Todays-News-8-247004-Judicial-officers

April 29, 2014   No Comments

Increasing the retirement age: edit in Dawn, Apr 29, 2014

WHILE the Finance Division has denied that the IMF at the Washington meeting suggested that the retirement age of state employees be increased, such a proposal would, in fact, merit consideration. Indeed, past dispensations too have mooted the idea of increasing the retirement age of state employees to put the brakes on ballooning pension bills. State expense, federal and provincial both, on wages and retirement benefits of public-sector employees has spiked quite rapidly in recent years.

The federal wage and pension bill for the present fiscal year, for example, has already swelled to Rs450bn. It is expected to rise further as the increasing cost of living creates a demand for a hefty raise in salaries, and in pensions every year. The need to control this expense cannot be overstated at a time when the government is living on borrowed money and is struggling to bridge its growing budget deficit. Thus, it will not be wrong for public pension reforms to remain the focus of any plan to cut the government’s expenditure.

In fact, cutting the pension bill by increasing the retirement age is a trend that has caught on globally in recent years. This move has allowed governments to utilise their employees who still have some active, productive years left, and somewhat reduce post-retirement expenses. Powerful bureaucrats, who get jobs in the private sector even before they retire from government service because of their connections in the right places, can, perhaps, resist such a move.

But they will be in a minority. Low-grade employees who are in a majority would want to stay in their jobs for a few more years rather than be forced into years of inactivity and a lower income. They will welcome such an extension.

There is an argument that the increase in the retirement age would affect the prospects of millions of younger people who join the job market every year. This point is often exaggerated. A government with enough fiscal space to provide better public services like education and healthcare creates more jobs through its own enhanced spending on development as well as by helping the private sector to expand. That should be the focus in an era when the state’s capacity to give jobs directly has decreased because of its changed role.http://www.dawn.com/news/1102920/increasing-the-retirement-age

April 29, 2014   No Comments

Video of Gilani’s captive son: edit in Dawn, Apr 29, 2014

AS father of a kidnapped son, Yousuf Raza Gilani had a point when he expressed his anguish over the interior minister’s decision to report the existence of a video showing his son’s plight in captivity. The contents of the video were a source of torment to the family, because Ali Haider said his kidnappers had kept him in chains and that his family and the government were not doing enough for his release.

The former prime minister wasn’t wide of the mark when he said Chaudhry Nisar Ali Khan’s decision was an irresponsible one. For the interior minister, Ali Haider is one of numerous people who are kidnapped in Pakistan almost daily, but for Mr Gilani the captive is his son whose life is in danger. Almost a year has passed since

Mr Haider was kidnapped, but the government still has no clue as to the kidnappers’ identity. Yet, without sharing the video with the family, the interior minister chose to inform the media about it and, based on Ali Haider’s remarks, declared that the outlawed TTP wasn’t involved in the kidnapping. How is Chaudhry Nisar so sure of this? Didn’t it occur to the minister that the TTP would want to be absolved of the crime? Obviously, if they accepted this act of kidnapping, they would be asked to free him — and Shahbaz Taseer and former VC of Peshawar University Ajmal Khan — because an obliging government had already released 19 Taliban ‘non-combatants’.

What is at play is not only irresponsibility but the utter lack of professionalism in dealing with cold-blooded and ferocious militants. If the minister lacked expertise in this, the least he could have done was to seek guidance from the Karachi-based Citizen-Police Liaison Committee, which has decades of experience in dealing with kidnappings and securing the freedom of a number of victims. The issue is the government’s mindset, for the consistency with which it has been kowtowing to the Taliban seems to be in display in this case, too.http://www.dawn.com/news/1102917/video-of-gilanis-captive-son

April 29, 2014   No Comments

Forced Eviction : edit in The Nation, Apr 29, 2014

The tribal areas of Pakistan are most frequently described as lawless. The latest news to come out of Khyber Agency, one of the seven agencies in the Federally Administered Tribal Areas (FATA), reaffirms that impression. Reportedly, no less than 100 families belonging to Afghan tribes have been forced to flee from their homes in Bara following death threats from an outlawed terrorist group, Lashkar-e-Islam (LeI). The roots of the issue can be traced to Afghanistan’s Nangarhar province, where LeI faces an armed opposition from members of the same tribes, which remain settled in Afghanistan. The conflict poured into Pakistan when the Mangal Bagh-led LeI asked tribes living in Bara to provide fighters and other assistance to the group or face consequences. As the set deadline approached closer, the vulnerable tribes abandoned their homes and possessions to find shelter in Peshawar and other adjoining areas. This unfortunate development points towards two major problems.

It is evident from the incident that the concerned areas remain safe havens for terrorist outfits. Their influence can be ascertained from the fact that they are able to displace a hundred families at will. As long as their strongholds exist in FATA, they are free to launch attacks inside both Afghanistan and Pakistan. The former invites international criticism as well as drones and the latter needs no explanation for the destruction is there before all to witness. Though the Khyber Agency has undergone a military operation not too long ago, sustained peace is not possible unless a strong local infrastructure is set up.

The second problem is that of the Afghanistan-Pakistan link. What measures can be taken to curtail the fallout from the insurgency in Afghanistan? As long as the state continues to keep its borders open for the good Taliban, it will continue to expose its own citizens to avoidable risks. The free mobility enjoyed by militants has to be disrupted at all costs. But for now, what action will the authorities take to accommodate the displaced families and against LeI?http://www.nation.com.pk/editorials/29-Apr-2014/forced-eviction

No action on banned groups: edit  in Dawn, Apr 29, 2014

IF banning terrorist and militant groups has not led to any credible or effective results, does that mean the government should quietly give up on the practice altogether? Or if the government is engaged in dialogue with the TTP leadership, does that mean that self-avowed splinter groups should continue to escape the state’s legal scrutiny or sanction? According to a report in this newspaper, the PML-N government has not banned a single militant or terrorist outfit since coming to office almost a year ago. A partial explanation could be the government’s avowed stance of pursuing dialogue with the outlawed TTP first, but, if true, it would be a thoroughly unsatisfactory explanation.

Even the government has suggested repeatedly that there is no guarantee that talks will succeed, while consistently also maintaining that all options remained open if talks eventually failed. So it would make sense to keep monitoring and officially labelling new groups that emerge during this phase. That way, swift — and, importantly, legal — action could be taken if talks fail.

Yet, it appears that another part of the explanation for the government’s inaction lies in the procedure for banning terrorist and militant groups: the interior ministry is in charge and the minister leading that ministry, Nisar Ali Khan, has hugely invested in the dialogue process to the point of tunnel vision and an inability to focus on other aspects of his job perhaps. For example, if the TTP splinter group Ahrarul Hind is what it and the TTP claims it is, then it deserves to be banned at the very least for the attacks it has claimed responsibility for.

If nothing else, it would give the interior minister and his negotiators some extra leverage at the negotiating table with the Taliban when it comes to demanding that the TTP rein in or hand over affiliates who are unwilling to talk peace. But the interior minister’s seeming willingness to give up every possible leverage he has in the talks process appears to prevail.

What can — and does — get overlooked because of the ineffective and sometimes non-existent implementation of the ban on certain groups is that it can be a rather powerful tool. At the very least, it gives the state the authority to clamp down on funding — a crucial lifeline for any group — seize bank accounts and make international travel for individuals difficult.

Those measures alone can have a significantly disruptive effect, and that’s before the advantages when it comes to investigations and securing prosecutions in the courts. To be sure, the ease with which groups evade existing bans by simply changing the name of their organisations needs to be looked at. Yet fixing the system of banning groups will only matter if the government shows some interest in the system to begin with


April 29, 2014   No Comments

Gilani says Nisar has jeopardised his son’s release; The News, Apr 29, 2014

LAHORE: Former Prime Minster Syed Yusuf Raza Gilani on Monday said the statement of the interior minister had damaged the negotiation process between him and the Taliban over the release of his abducted son Haider Gilani.

Gilani also disclosed that he hadn’t received any media tape showing his son, as mentioned by Chaudhry Nisar recently but possessed another video which was provided by people mediating between him and the Taliban over the release of his son.

Talking to the media, the former PM said that Chaudhry Nisar had given a clean chit to the Taliban while saying that they were not behind the abduction. Gilani said his dialogue with the Taliban was going on positively but the statement of Chaudhry Nisar had caused a serious setback to it. He said the statement by the interior minister had come at a point when our people were to be released from the Taliban in lieu of the release of their members. He also said he could not understand what benefit Nisar had sought while issuing the statement which resulted in serious complications in the process of Haider Gilani’s release. He said at the same time, Chaudhry Nisar had also stated the video wasn’t credible.

Gilani said that video in his custody showed the Taliban saying that his son had been abducted to avenge the Swat operation. However, Gilani said the operation in Swat during his tenure as PM enjoyed public support. To another question, he said the PPPP leadership was facing serious life threats and party Chairman Bilawal would visit Punjab whenever he felt safe. http://www.thenews.com.pk/Todays-News-5-246938-Gilani-says-Nisar-has-jeopardised-his-sons-release

April 29, 2014   No Comments

Many PPP heavyweights not invited to CEC meeting : by NOKHAIZ SAHI in The Nation, Apr 29, 2014

ISLAMABAD – Pakistan People’s Party leadership has invited only 32 out of 50 members for attending the recent Central Executive Council (CEC) at Ghari Khuda Buksh leaving out many veterans including ex-PM Gilani which has raised some eyebrows.

Only Malik Hakmeen attended the CEC from Rawalpindi region while former Prime Minister Raja Pervaiz Ashraf was ignored, The Nation learnt.

Sources said that former premier Raja Pervaiz Ashraf and Qazi Sultan did not attend the CEC meeting as they were told to hold a meeting at their own in Punjab. PPP Chairman Bilawal Bhutto chaired the meeting along with former President and Co-Chairman Asif Ali Zardari on the Shaheed Zulifqar Ali Bhutto death anniversary.

Talking to The Nation, former Prime Minster Syed Raza Gilani confirmed that PPP CEC had passed a resolution against the kidnapping of his son Syed Ali Haider Gilani and slain Governor Salman Taseer’s son Shahbaz Taseer.

PPP leader Qazi Sultan when approached said that he was senior member of CEC and he was invited to attend the meeting but he was not able to travel to Larkana due to the deteriorating health. He said the party leadership had tasked him to arrange the seminar on Bhutto’s death anniversary on local level.

Well-placed sources in PPP revealed that PPP top leadership instructed the local leadership of PPP to hold functions of ZAB’s anniversary on regional level and only senior member Malik Hakmeen was invited to attend the CEC meeting. Malik Hakmeen is a senior member of CEC but PPP leadership ignored him during its government and did not give him any responsibility or task at any level.

Another leader of PPP and advisor to PPP Chairman Bilawal Bhutto Fawad Chaudhry said the party leadership invited Raja Pervaiz Ashraf but he could not attend the meeting due to poor health. He said Raja Pervaiz Ashraf is a senior leader of PPP and the party cannot ignore his role for strengthening the democracy. He stated that Bilawal Bhutto decided in the meeting to start visiting different areas of Punjab. Former PM is playing active role for reorganizing the party along with PPP Punjab president Mian Mazoor Watto in Punjab.

According to media reports, Zardari put the questions over the performance of his two Premiers including Raja Pervaiz Ashraf and Seyd Yousuf Raza Gilani and also blamed that PPP could not perform in the Punjab in general election on May 11, 2013, due to the bad governance in last PPP’s five-year tenure. Asif Zardari said Gilani was the only PM from Multan region and Raja Pervaiz Ashraf only focused on his city Gujar Khan instead of the whole country.http://www.nation.com.pk/islamabad/29-Apr-2014/many-ppp-heavyweights-not-invited-to-cec-meeting

April 29, 2014   No Comments

Imran is out to derail democratic system: Achakzai

Report   in daily times, apr 28, 2014

ISLAMABAD: The spokesperson of Jamiat Ulema Islam Jan Achakzai has said that Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf’s decision to launch a protest on May 11 is aimed at undermining democratic system at the behest of lobbies that have already “tasked Tahirul Qadri with the same goal”.

In a statement on Sunday, Achakzai said that PTI has joined hands with the anti-democratic forces like Tahirul Qadri to derail the system and is attempting to sneak into power through backdoors. “Why did he accept the results of May 2013 elections when he was fouled in the Punjab elections, (according to his claim)? Is it not because he wanted to enjoy the power in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa?” asked Achakzai.

He said, “Imran Khan has support of some powerful lobbies of the West, this is why on a wink, he jumped into the fray by announcing protest campaign from May 11.” He suspected that Imran and Qadri would soon join a single platform to destabilise the democratic system and create an environment for undemocratic forces to benefit. About Imran’s statement on Geo group, he asked why Imran did not criticise Geo “when it attacked the Ideology of Pakistan, undermined the concept of Khatam-e-Nabowat, promoted vulgar culture in the country and maligned parliament and politicians”.

“Why this sudden awakening of Imran Khan’s conscience after Hamid Mir episode, unless he has been winked to issue such statements?” he asked. He said that Imran has no commitment to democracy as he is himself a major beneficiary of May 11 rigged elections. He added that the PTI chief is simply making his outside patrons happy and trying to sneak into power through backdoors. “But the democratic forces would not allow his dream to come true,” he added.http://www.dailytimes.com.pk/national/28-Apr-2014/imran-is-out-to-derail-democratic-system-achakzai

April 28, 2014   No Comments

Cold war among institutions: Altaf Hussain urges PM to play his role : The Express Tribune, Apr 28, 2014

KARACHI: Muttahida Quami Movement (MQM) chief Altaf Hussain has ‘earnestly’ appealed to the Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif to play his role as the head of the government in steering the country out of the ‘present crisis’.

In a statement issued to media on Sunday, the MQM chief said the country was facing internal divide rather than an external threat. He urged the PM to immediately intervene to address the existing chaos, by appearing in the National Assembly and Senate or calling an All Parties Conference.

“I repeat it again and again that [as] Nawaz Sharif is holding one of the most important offices, i.e., that of prime minister, he should act according to his stature and [fulfill] his responsibility. He should not abandon his people at this juncture and should come forward to lead them,” Altaf said.

He requested the premier to bring an end to the ‘cold war’ among institutions, adding that Pakistan had attained democracy after great sacrifices ‘and all of us will be responsible if, God forbid, anything bad happens to democracy’.

“Our country is already propped up on very weak crutches. At this time, there is an utmost need for national consensus, unity and harmony among institutions,” he added.

He hoped that the PM and his aides would consider his ‘suggestions’ on urgent basis and would play his role in bringing the country out of the existing crisis as ‘one of the most responsible officials of the country and head of the ruling party’. http://tribune.com.pk/story/701230/cold-war-among-institutions-altaf-hussain-urges-pm-to-play-his-role/

April 28, 2014   No Comments