Posted on May 11, 2012
Just watch a nightly newscast or go through a morning newspaper pages and it seems as if the entire country is on strike and in a state of paralysis. Not a day goes by without witnessing some half a dozen, if not more, strikes. If on a day striking young doctors are out on the street, the next day it is paramedics or nurses. And if today clerks are on strike, tomorrow employees of a state utility will be seen agitating before a press club or a government office. Indeed, be it traders or entrepreneurs, truckers or transporters, cabbies or bus drivers, commoners or professionals, in short, anybodies who are anybody in this land, they are on a strike one day or the other.
And if this poignantly shows how deep and widespread runs the public discontent across the entire spectrum of our polity, it sharply demonstrates how a grand failure have turned out to be the incumbent rulers across the board, unexceptionably. The Zardaris, the Gilanis, the Shahbazs, the Hotis, the Riasanis, et al of their ilk of this land, they all sit befittingly in the league of non-performers. None can reasonably assert to be an exception. None can credibly claim of running his domain well to the gratification of its residents. Every nook and cranny of the land is resounding with administrative chaos and anarchy and the country is reverberating with public despondency, disgust and frustration from end to end.
It seems the moment the incumbents walked in to take over, the first thing they did was to rub their slates of the word "administration" and write in bold letters the world "politics" instead. And since then they have done no administration at all and have done only politics. Indeed, quite a lot of time after their debut they spent away in yapping �democracy' without comprehending its essence. It was a mere symbolism they kept celebrating, knowing not that democracy means a dedicated, devoted and selfless service to the mass of the people whose happiness and acquiescence indeed forms up the bedrock of a democratic order. But public service has not been the moving passion of any of the grandees making up this league of the non-performing incumbents.
Even their symbolism has been slim and puerile. The pedigrees and patriarchies that made to the legislatures and governments after the 2008 poll were more or less the same that had graced the legislative halls and power corridors under the praetorian general. In cases, not even faces changed. The only change was in the seating configurations across the aisle. Those who were earlier occupying the treasury benches were now berthed on the opposition seats, while those cooling their heels in the opposition wilderness were now occupying the positions of power. So there was not much there in reality to squawk about. Yet squeak the incumbents did nosily as if this change of seating configuration was some kind of a divine miracle in these contemporary times.
They forgot that they were there not to sing hymns to democracy but to administer and deliver to the masses their needs. And this forgetfulness still possesses them to the point of emasculating immobility. Over the past four years or so, they have ruled and reigned without giving a stab to any of the distressful woes making the lives of the masses a living hell. While an unrelenting power scarcity has ruined and ransacked the nation's broken economy and the people's lives, the federal incumbents have spectacularly failed in grappling with this paucity and overcoming it. They have proved an utter failure in tackling even the issue of circular debt, which if resolved for good could perhaps help in mitigating this scarcity considerably.
And all the provincial incumbents have grandly failed in keeping a control on prices of at least the basic needs in the market. Can you imagine even in this predominantly agrarian polity, vegetables selling in the market at the gold price? And still there is no check on the prices anywhere in the land, not even in Punjab, the nation's veritable granary. The hierarchs may not even know that homes after homes in their domains have for months not cooked even a dish of vegetables, leave alone lentils which too sell at prices competitive with meats'.
The accomplishments of which the incumbents feel so proud mean nothing to the commoners as those have brought no cheer to their miserable lives. The much-sung provincial autonomy has brought no administrative benefits to the masses; it has created only more administrative chaos and disorder. And the new dispensation for sharing of the federal divisible pool may have beefed up the provincial treasuries but has given no new schools, no new clinics, no new hospitals, no new roads, and no new public works to the masses all over the land. So, public anguish runs all over the country like ruinous waters of a freak flood. Then what else could it be if not the country would stay on strike?
The country on strike
I am referring to the well worded editorial published today Friday 11th May 2012 in Frontier Post under the caption ' The country on strike' which is so self explanatory that it does not need any further explanation or elaboration. I have my serious doubts that those manning our power corridor will even read the editorial what to talk of taking remedial steps to provide some ease and comfort to the lives of those who simply could not tolerate any further and had to resort to strikes and come on roads. The placards and their shouts were mind boggling but for those who are humans and not for those who at one point of time begged each and everyone to vote for them but once they are elected they shunned the same who voted for them. How shameful to lure someone to vote and once he or she votes for him and her then he or she be ignored altogether? Those who have slightest ray of self respect in them should have left the chair when people are so much agitating but alas our rulers are those who take insult as pride and nit curse.
The country has never been strike free, to be honest, but one way or the other the reign of Zardari and Gillani has brought all those on roads who never protested alike. Isn't is very shameful to pen that each day there is a strike if not in Karachi then in Lahore or for that matter in Quetta and Peshawar etc very well proves beyond any shadow of doubt that ''The country on strike'
Iqbal Hadi Zaidi / Kuwait /