malka mar gai, badshah zindabad: On PPP’s transition from BB to Asif Zardari – by Qais Anwar

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3 responses to “malka mar gai, badshah zindabad: On PPP’s transition from BB to Asif Zardari – by Qais Anwar”

  1. ya tehrer jin khaton nay likhy ha unka Affiliation kis say ha sab ko mallom ha Sana Bhucha Agencies ke hidayat pay amal pera ha apney maliko ke tarah ! very nice post !

  2. This is Ms Naheed Khan’s article which the author (Qais Anwar) referred to in the above post:

    Still we pursue the struggle!

    By Naheed Khan

    Monday, December 27, 2010

    “Time is the best healer.” Here is a saying often used to console those who grieve, especially after the loss of someone very dear or close.

    It is hard for me to decide whether or not this saying is true, for it has been three years since she left us and I, who was once so used to her fragrance around me, have still not been able to accept the bitter reality of Benazir Bhutto’s tragic death.

    I am compelled to call her martyrdom a death, a cold-blooded murder, because the glory of her sacrifice has been taken away from her by those who fostered under her leadership, the members of her own party. I feel burdened, weighed down for denying justice to Bibi after her death, by the government of her own people.

    The only thing we have managed to do is to use her name and her murder as tools to prolong the lavish way of living and the regal protocols that come with power. When we entered the elections a couple of months after losing Bibi, the party workers and supporters were enraged and aggrieved. They worked diligently, day and night, with the same passion and effort that Bibi had expected and practiced herself. When the PPP won the election, the workers thought this was the first step towards the Pakistan Bibi had dreamt of. They were hopeful of finding Bibi’s assassins, they expected the new leadership of the PPP to execute the manifesto Bibi had written for them and for Pakistan. God provided Mr Zardari a golden opportunity to change not only the public perception about him but also to change the very course of Pakistan’s history. This would have been the best tribute he could possibly have paid to Pakistan’s favourite leader, following her death.

    She was a charismatic, brave and a visionary leader. She was a hope for the oppressed. She was of the view that Islam forbids injustice against human beings. She was a believer in equality between men and women. She respected the role of women in the society. She was a strong believer of political freedom.

    She was against the imbalance of wealth between the developed and the developing countries. She would believe that our political and economic institutions have collapsed and only determination of the people of Pakistan can bring Pakistan back on the right track. She wanted to see a democratic Pakistan with strong democratic structures according to the tracheotomy of powers as envisaged in the 1973 constitution.

    It was not destined to happen, however, and Pakistan descended into further chaos. We have witnessed our worst times todate, first the judicial crisis, followed by the floods, the increasing terrorism, the latest Haj scandal, the cricket crisis and the never-ending political corruption stories on a daily basis. The last three years have not done us any good. We have been isolated from the world, and our vulnerable leadership, not aware of the long-term consequences, has a confused plan for Pakistan or perhaps no plan at all.

    The lack of assertiveness in our leaders, confirmed recently in WikiLeaks, was no surprise to those who are well aware of the ground realities. It is a shame and an insult to the people’s mandate and Pakistan’s sovereignty that the fate of our country is decided and dictated to us from abroad. This is only possible when a country lacks leadership. Our beautiful country, with rich mineral deposits, is making others impose their terms on us only because we lack guidance.

    The PPP bagged votes for providing “Roti, Kapra Aur Makan” – “food, clothing and housing” to everyone without discrimination. Instead, we see more of poverty and hunger, suicidal terrorist attacks, political and economic instability, mounting crime, loadshedding with an increase in electricity bills every month, frustration and no hope of a brighter future. The common man has been deprived of the basic necessities of life.

    There is a growing gap between the government and the people and between the party leadership and the workers. The disgruntled worker of the party is dismayed, hurt and angry. They miss their leader, Benazir Bhutto, who knew them by their names, who religiously stayed in touch with them and made everyone feel important. Bibi was a born politician; she understood the importance of a political worker for a popular political party. Unlike Bibi, the new leadership, who claims to have learned politics from Bibi, couldn’t care less. The workers’ sacrifices, their loyalties, their struggle for the party have been completely ignored and there is no one to see or rectify their mounting frustration, perhaps because it contains no meaning for the leadership.

    The gap between the workers and the top leadership has widened further, as the top leadership distanced itself from the true workers of the party, whose love and loyalty are unconditional and unquestionable. Instead, the real Pakistan Peoples Party has been transformed into a cronies’ party, rewarding relatives, friends, business partners and everyone who served him in any way in the past. Whoever promised complete allegiance was accepted: political or non-political, there was no criterion.

    The strength of the PPP is its support in the down trodden, the peasants, students, youth and the working classes which represent the middle and the lower classes and a popular slogan given by Shaheed Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto ‘Roti Kapra or Makan’ wherein she added the same in the election manifesto in her last speech ‘Ilm, Roshni aur Kam; Maang raha hey her insane; Roti Kapra aur Makan which she repeated thrice.

    How soon people change, and not only change but forget. “The queen my lord is dead, long live the king.” This is the only song we hear today. Bibi’s blood has lost its significance because her own people have not left a single stone unturned to ridicule her bequest. Ironic, isn’t it?

    For the past few days, I have been seeing huge banners and billboards with pictures and names written in bold letters, trying to catch the attention of bigwigs, to pay tribute to Bibi on her 3rd death anniversary. What a way to pay tribute. With her killers still at large, everybody wonders if this is a befitting tribute.

    It is important to remember Bibi on her death anniversary, it is important to celebrate every chance we get to remember her, for life is hard enough. Death comes and taps each of us on the shoulder but very few are remembered even after they die. It is ironic that the PPP’s top leadership, who is at the top only because Bibi left us at the wrong time, does not reveal the names of the killers despite claiming to know who they are. His excuse for not bringing them to task is “democracy is the best revenge”. For him it may be but for us, the party workers, it is not. We want a probe into Bibi’s murder.

    Bibi’s death anniversary this year will go by like the previous two. The whole leadership will be photographed on Bibi’s grave, make promises on TV cameras to protect the legacy of the Shaheeds and then forget about it. This is what we have been witnessing for the past three years and nothing is likely to change.

    The over-hyped UN Fact Finding Commission’s report was released and while I find it inadequate, I still feel there were some important leads that could have given further clues. However, the attitude of the party leadership is unbelievably non-serious and this assassination case is treated worse than a common murder case.

    Benazir Bhutto’s blood is not for manipulating, it is the blood that demands justice; it has not only taken away our leader, it has taken a mother away from three growing children. The PPP leadership owes this to the people of Pakistan and to the children of our leader.

    The other day, I heard an opposition leader saying that they wanted the PPP government to complete their term so that they are finished and gone forever. What a painful thing to listen to. I had tears in my eyes. It took them 40 years to finish the Bhuttos, to eradicate love for the Bhuttos from the people’s hearts, but they couldn’t do it. What they couldn’t do is being done by those Bibi thought were loyal to the party, or had become loyal to the party. The opportunists, in the disguise of loyalists, are making sure the party is wrecked to the core.

    But I want to reassure them that the Bhuttos live in the hearts of the people, and I also want to tell my fellow party workers to wait until the opportunists jump from the sinking ship, to continue to struggle against those who have taken our party hostage. They will go, they are destined to be doomed. The party will remain one and united, it is only the opportunists that will run away after their objectives are met. I want to reassure the anti-Bhutto elements that their wishful thinking will remain their wish for as long as even one worker is there to protect the Bhutto legacy, and that is a promise.

    I will keep raising my voice on different forums, fearlessly. I remained indifferent when my basic party membership was suspended until I explained my position. What a trivial thing to do; it wasn’t even worth mentioning to anyone. I am being victimised since the day Bibi left us; a massive, sponsored defamation campaign was launched against me and my husband, Senator Safdar Ali Abbasi. It was not our fault that Bibi trusted us more than anyone else claiming to be her heir.

    We are enduring the torture of having to see the party being ridiculed by those who had nothing to do with the party. Those who were hardly aware of the hierarchy of a political setup are now the ultimate authorities in the party. We will keep demanding impartial probe into Bibi’s murder, we will continue to remind the party leadership that it has drifted away from the party’s basic ideology. The PPP is identified as the Bhuttos’ party; it will continue to exist only if it remains one. It is not possible for us to stay quiet seeing Bibi’s hard work being thrown away. We owe this to her.

    The shallow media campaign against two party workers is not going to help the party. The prompted cronies and the badmouthing about us will not do any good. A few dirty articles here and there and some non-political people yapping on talk shows or public meetings are not going to make us withdraw our concerns.

    The only thing that may serve the party in the long run is a sincere probe into Bibi’s murder and to run the party as the People’s Party, not a kitchen cabinet for cronies. Mr President’s friends, in party meetings, arrogantly say they are not PPP workers, but the president’s friends. This is not the party we all belonged to. The party must go back to its basic beliefs and ideology, the one that the Bhuttos established. That is how it should be, and that is how it should stay. “Still we pursue the struggle. Lets March on!”