We have too many governments in Pakistan – By Naseer Ahmed

We have too many governments in Pakistan. We have governments elected by people, i.e., central, provincial and local governments.

We have self-designated governments like ISI (military), judiciary, media, extremists and feudal-industrial complex.

The self-designated governments have four purposes.

1. To defy public mandate
2. To undermine other governments
3. To impose their will upon people without their consent
4. To protect their financial and social interests

Elected governments are legitimate governments because they derive their power from people and constitution. However, we have experienced illegal elected governments like local, provincial and federal governments under military dictators.

Legitimately elected governments seldom try to fulfil their mandates. Mostly they struggle for survival.

Military and ISI governments do not pay much attention to
public well being because their rationale for government seeks validity from their generals’ personal whims.

Judicial governments are a recent phenomenon. Sometimes sitting chief justices suddenly come across this intuition that constitution means that they can replace elected governments if they do not like their leaders.

Media government is a new thing in Pakistan. Rupert Murdock and Italian prime minister provided inspiration for Pakistani media. They try to dictate their agendas because they believe that permanent propaganda against government ministers would break them. Thus, they shall become king-makers in our country.

All sorts of (religious) extremists want to establish a caliphate in Pakistan. They do not like vote. Instead, they love brutal force. They have a strong support between Pakistani and Saudi rich people. I do not write elite because if we view elitism as a political philosophy, we find a strong connection between elitism and cultural achievement. Our elites have no cultural credentials. They have tried to undermine every cultural achievement of this land.

Then we have this feudal-industrial complex. They would not share their wealth with people. They would do their best to maintain and acquire new wealth at the expense of every good thing in Pakistani life.

We have bureaucracy, which is not coming out of the colonial mind-set. They view their constitutional obligations to serve people as a sort of crime.

Our local governments would never devolve their powers to common person. However, they would like to exercise and abuse more power eagerly.

All these governments are pitted against each other and poor people of Pakistan. All these governments have lofty idealistic rhetoric without will to work. When it comes to work, you see only bureaucracy and politician doing whatever work is done. Because politician wants re-election and civil servant wants promotion. All other pretenders have the brute force to impose their will. Too many cooks are spoiling the broth.

Most of these governments are a consequence of our cultural ideals. A successful Pakistani means, to most of these rich people, that:

– He should be rich.
– He should have power over other people.
– People must look up to him and he must look down upon them.
– He must inflict pain and poverty.
– He must insult fellow people.
– People must be afraid of him.
– People must respect him without respecting him.

Power in our country is not a constitutional right but personal achievement.

I think solution to this megalomania, this delusion of godhood lies in prisons, mental hospitals and a perpetual dose of democracy. Otherwise, we will destroy our house in order to impose our wills.



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