Shehbaz-govt will succeed only if ensures political rights of Imran, elimination of communalism, support to Ukraine and justice to Kashmiris & Nawaz, Zardari etc . By Hem Raj Jain


During the last 20 days in office it has been a mixed bag for Pakistan PM Shehbaz Sharif where he did many good things (which was expected from him as he in popular perception is considered to be a good administrator) but it will not add much to his political capital. Shehbaz also committed two major political mistakes, one about getting installed his son Hamza as CM Punjab which may be legal (due to court order) but not legitimate as it was with the support of defector’s from the Imran party hence it has benefited Imran politically.

Second about getting ridiculous FIR registered against about 150 including Imran, PTI office bearers, members and others for sloganeering at Masjid - Nabawi in Saudi Arabia (SaAr) including against those who were not present at site [such FIR can’t be registered by police without formal approval of government, (which presently is PML-N govt) because as per section 196 of Cr.P.C. no court shall take cognizance of any offense punishable under section 295-A of P.P.C. etc unless upon complaint made by order of or under authority from, the Federal Government or the Provincial Government concerned]. Rather Shehbaz-govt should have filed such FIR only at the request of the government of SaAr but there was no such request from SaAr hence the Shehbaz-govt unnecessarily tried to be ‘more loyal than the king’ and this has again benefited Imran politically. 

As per media reports, the higher judiciary has already intervened in both these matters and hopefully further political damage to Shehbaz-govt would be stopped by the judiciary. No doubt presently the political atmosphere is immensely charged in Pakistan due to narrative created by Imran by using Jihadi-Islam & anti-US sentiments against no-confidence motion in which Imran was removed from office on April 10 but it doesn’t have adequate potential & capacity to constrain the Shehbaz government to call immediate / early elections. In other words Imran can’t dislodge Shehbaz-govt from power till 2023 elections rather Shehbaz can be dislodged from office only by political follies of Shehbaz himself. Shehbaz-govt can easily remain in power till 2023 elections (as per schedule) if it ensures political rights of Imran,  support to Ukraine, elimination of communalism and justice to Nawaz, Zardari etc & Kashmiris (generally as mentioned at ), as explained below:- 

(1)-  First and foremost Shehbaz should ensure that whenever and wherever Imran and his party PTI want to carry out demonstrations, rallies, march, protest, Jalsa, dharna (sit-in) etc they should be given prompt proper police / administrative permission as per law. At the same time if in these political activities PTI indulges in violence or in any other illegal activities then they should be stopped immediately and punished as per law. Shehbaz need not do anything extra, rather if these are ensured then in due course of time (sooner than later) Imran will lose public presence considerably in these political activities for the simple reason that Shehbaz government is not only legal but legitimate too. Because even if there was alleged US-conspiracy to dislodge Imran-govt it was a matter between US-govt & Pakistan-govt (the then Imran-govt) and Member of Parliament (MNAs) had nothing to do with it. Hence no-confidence motion brought by MNAs was legal & legitimate unless these MNAs committed some crime which had a potential of disqualifying them. The Imran-govt (during about relevant two months when it was in power) never provided any actionable proof of any money trail etc between USA and these MNAs, therefore the govt of Shehbaz Sharif (after no-confidence against Imran-govt without vote of defectors from PTI) is a legal & legitimate government.

(2)-  Shehbaz government need not be apologetic about support to Ukraine against Russia. If Russia (after destroying the existing global political order by invading Ukraine) was prepared to establish an alternate global political order, the rest of the world would have accepted the leadership of Russia but Russia is not doing it. Hence it is the responsibility of the entire world including nuclear Pakistan (which is also benefiting from the inevitable global political order of the UN sponsored by the USA) to support the USA in protecting the sovereignty, independence, territorial integrity and human rights of Ukraine. At the same time Shehbaz-govt should ask the USA that after Ukraine crisis is over, a new ‘participatory global political order’ should replace the present veto-giving (to 5 countries) global political order of the UN where two veto wielding countries (Russia and China) are constantly fighting 24x7 with three other veto wielding countries (the USA, UK and France) and which has been disturbing & troubling the entire world.

(3)- Religion is good for any society but when it promotes rabid communalism it harms the society and it has been immensely harming Pakistan too where even other Muslims (Shias, Ahmadiyas etc are still killed and persecuted). Independent India and Pakistan (East & West) came into existence on the basis of “Indian Independence Act 1947” in which the population was not supposed to leave their respective country by force and which was necessary for keeping the region free from communal poison which is necessary for any functioning and progressive State. This independence / partition of India has been rendered illegal for the simple reason that during partition the forced population transfer (by mass level genocide) was allowed. This partition (when India was member of the UN sponsored by the USA) based on religion was engineered by the UK & USA in order to create Pakistan (especially West Pakistan) which they needed as bullwork against USSR at Afghanistan border (which they did through SEATO & CENTO) and the then political leaders of India and Pakistan (East & West) fell for it.  Moreover after partition and after such forced population transfer the governments of India and Pakistan (East & West) never tried to rehabilitate these forcibly & illegally displaced people because these governments never gave proper law & order in their countries which was necessary for such rehabilitation. 

(4)- Nobody says that Hindu majority India is not communal as is evident from what has happened in India especially after Babri-masjid dispute since late eighties and its demolition in 1992 where thousands of mainly innocent Muslims have been killed, injured, their properties destroyed, women dishonored including in 2002 in Gujarat. But the condition is worse in Muslim Pakistan & Bangladesh because about 20 % of Hindu / Sikh population has been forcibly expelled from each of Pakistan & Bangladesh whereas in India the Muslim population has remained same rather has increased a bit to about 15 % (including millions of illegal immigrants mainly from Bangladesh). This communal poison in the Indian subcontinent is the biggest hurdle in the enforcement of human rights (as enshrined in ICCPR of the UN) and also in the progress (including economic) of the region. Therefore without going into much details as to how the virus of communalism spread in Indian subcontinent from the pre-partition days of India it is enough to say that now Shehbaz-govt should work for at-least ‘dual citizenship’ by India, Pakistan and Bangladesh to these forcibly displaced Hindus, Muslims and Sikhs (and their descendants which are reportedly about 160 million) with proper law & order in these countries where people with this ‘dual citizenship’ will go.

(5)- Shehbaz-govt should immediately dissolve the absurd & unnecessary ‘National Accountability Bureau’ (NAB) and let normal judicial proceedings be there to punish anyone involved in corruption. After all in India also government functionaries including many Chief ministers have been sentenced and sent to jail in corruption cases without persecution-proceedings as has been done in Pakistan by the NAB. Moreover Shehbaz should get writ petitions filed in the Supreme Court of Pakistan (SCP) by concerned people rather victims to (i)- Review the judgments in all the cases related to Panama Papers etc against Nawaz Sharif, Asif Ali Zardari and others (ii)- Any sub-judice case should be first sent to trial court (iii)- Ensure that all these victims are given bail and right to contest election and to hold party positions during trial and all the appeals in High Court & SCP (iv)- Any other relief by SCP in the interest of complete justice to these victims. Moreover Shehbaz-govt should ensure appropriate amendments in Constitution & Laws which will make such judicial coups (as was done in case of Nawaz) impossible in future and remove bad laws such as lifelong disqualification and which brings draconian NAB into existence. .

(6)- Pak-military (and other security-forces) should be ordered by Shehbaz-govt to not obstruct at LoC the over one million non-violent peace-march (in presence of International media) of MAINLY the unarmed people of Pakistan side of J&K (AJK + Gilgit-Baltistan) to Srinagar, India where they (along with others) would offer arrest before Indian authorities while demanding immediate restoration of human rights of Kashmiris which are being denied to them and also for  plebiscite in united-J&K as mandated by the ‘Instrument of Accessions’ of J&K to India and by UN Resolution 1948 (Shehbaz-govt should ensure that Pakistan doesn’t unnecessarily & foolishly makes fuss about vacating AJK & GB for carrying out this plebiscite under security forces of India with or without the help of UNPKF). This peace march is enough to not only take the wind out of the sails of Imran about his fake Jihadi / Islamist narrative but will also register the names of the Shehbaz-govt in golden letters in human-rights-history for the simple reason that it will bring REAL relief & succor to millions of Kashmiri Muslims & hundreds of thousands of forcibly displaced Hindu Kashmiri Pandits who all are suffering for decades.  

No doubt bringing the economy of Pakistan on track will be the minimum condition which will keep Shehbaz government in power comfortably till 2023 elections (and even beyond) but it will not be enough unless Shehbaz government does the above mentioned by showing requisite political will & integrity.

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