“The absolute power corrupts absolutely”, must be an allusion to the likes of PTI MPA Imran Shah coined by the British historian Lord Acton. In, what can be termed the brazen display of abuse of power, the volley of slapping on an elderly citizen Dawood Chohan in a road rage speaks volumes of the mindset the political elite still possesses in “New Pakistan”.
The hapless victim subjected to disgrace in public was later approached by the tormenting MPA for reconciliation to save his skin in the wake of public outrage on social media bolstered by electronic media airing the footage of the incident. But, all in vain as the situation could not be diffused serving as a slap in the face for PTI which caused a great deal of mortification to it as wrath of public knew no bounds until the Apex Court stepped in to conciliate.
The pain of physical torture inflicted on the elderly man by the muscle-bound young man was aggravated by the mental torture ensued from PTI Discipline Committee’s resultant imposition of Rs.0.5m fine on Imran Shah rather than doing real justice after vetting the case. The phenomenon tells the story of pervasive double standards of “Insaf” in illuminating details thus far.
The question arises here whether slapping of monetary fine on a legislator, who is, by the book, bound to protect life and honor of citizenry, for slapping a commoner is a good barter and that is this the sense of social justice PTI has been trumpeting as a catalyst which earned it distinction from its rival parties. Ought it to stop here or should it have entailed an exemplary penalty bearing testimony to materialization of PTI chief and now PM Pakistan Imran Khan’s vision of an egalitarian society. But, regrettably it proved otherwise. Later on, the CJP gauging the sensitivity of the matter as a case of violation of human rights took suo moto of the slapping incident. The CJP showing restraint while keeping in view Imran Shah’s veneration as a member provincial Assembly has unprecedentedly slapped an Rs.3m fine on him, the amount shall be deposited in Dam Fund within fifteen days. While, the victim Daood Chohan nobly forgave Imran Shah.
The spree of misuse of power was intensified by Chief Minister Punjab Usman Buzdar in the recent DPO Pakpattan Rizwan Gondal transfer case involving Khawar Farid Manika, a Customs officer belonging to an influential political family in Pakpattan. The DPO was transferred on CM orders in the backlash of stopping Khawar Manika’s car for frisking purpose by a police team, who (Manika) is alleged to have hurled a stream of expletives at police personnel present on the spot.
In, what can be termed as an irony of facts, a glaring instance of political influence & interference in Punjab Police to say the least Mr. Gondal was summoned by CM late night in his office in utter violation of the decorum of CM office. In the blatant show of mockery of law the uniformed DPO was subjected to gratuitous insults in an indecorous language by a civilian Ahsan Jameel Gujjar, a Real Estate tycoon, in presence of CM Usman Buzdar. Adding insult to the injury he was ordered by Usman Buzdar to tender an apology to influential Manika by visiting his outhouse for not yielding to register a case against the police officials for ‘misbehaving with him ‘, merely on his (Manika) verbal orders rather than a written application which is a requirement for a legal action following due formal procedure or say SOPs. The noncompliance to rule of the ruler by DPO lead to his transfer.
It merits mentioning here that Gujjar is husband of a friend of First Lady Bushra Bibi who herself is ex-wife of Khawar Farid Manika. It is the same family at whose residence the Nikkah ceremony of Imran Khan and Bushra Bibi came off. To belief of some well-informed circles Gujjar is moving spirit behind appointment of Usman Buzdar as CM seen by public at large as well as Political commentators a crass act unbecoming of a visionary party which claims to be a torch bearer of merit and transparency.
As the last resort Chief Justice of Pakistan Saqib Nisar has taken suo moto notice of the issue and summoned in person the affected DPO, Khawar Manika as well as all those concerned and involved in the case including CM Usman Buzdar. The case is pending decision till the publication of this write-up. All are hopeful that justice will be served to the victim in this case too.
Whoever turns out to be guilty, whatever the decision of the case, CM Usman Buzdar has proved to best inherit and practice political interference in police affairs from its predecessors in the office what PTI has decried ever since its inception.
Already exasperated by an above apprehension election of CM Punjab, a vexed question, the masses including PTI votaries have been hit hard by this deed of Usman Buzdar who is being seen as a diffident rubber stamp. For many Imran Khan’s pick for the chief executive of the largest province of country flies in the face of his political acumen.
So, given the sorrow state of affairs the PTI government is afflicted with, its top leadership needs to pull its socks up and revisit some of its decisions and choices through sifting the extraneous elements in its ranks in order to implement its manifesto in letter and spirit for realization of its dream of “New Pakistan”. Relying on excuse of facing teething problems and being in an initial stage of government to cover up its follies would not bail them out particularly in view of its tall claims of good governance while facing an opposition the PTI has been flaying for bad governance. When juxtaposed with its ambitious goals of good governance PTI government’s working is a race against the clock, seeking three month relaxation ahead of subjecting to critical appraisal would not be a sane approach of Imran Khan as a government head as each day counts when it comes to changing the decades long plagued system; and five-year stint would only help to plant little seeds of change. Five years hence, it can be hoped, the nation would witness a glimmer of slightly improved Pakistan in form of PTI government performance which replication in the next successive reign, as is mandated, can develop it into a rising sun of a new Pakistan as envisioned by Imran Khan.
So, PM Imran Khan has to move on and keep to his words even sans letting anyone doubt his probity even if some of his comrades are to be angry as a result of tough decisions in good faith, so be it; do not overlook what seems minor or petty, do not consider much what optically appears to be of worth. The PM needs to do the needful to retrieve the situation right now or throw your hands up in the air, do not bother to brazen out the embarrassment caused by PTI parliamentarians’ malpractices forthwith after assuming office .
Set the house in order or face the music.
Let’s hope for the New Pakistan!