How Constant Fighting Between Establishment and Politicians Has Derailed Pakistan

In the quest for permanently deleting the political parties from the system and aligning one single party for the ultimate welfare of the establishment, the whole system is now living dangerously, argues Barrister Awais


Let us go back a couple of years: when in the aftermath of the Panama scandal, Nawaz Sharif was accused of having made his assets with the money made from corruption, no one wanted to believe that he might just be innocent.

The level of disbelief was such that even if courts had gone in favour of Nawaz Sharif people were ready to allege that Nawaz Sharif is so rich that he may have bought off all the judges. At the time, a scenario was created to propel the idea that every rich man is corrupt. "Behind every fortune, there is a crime", penned the former chief justice Asif Saeed Khosa.

Now one such fortune seems to have been made by the family of Lieutenant General (r) Asim Saleem Bajwa. In general, most of the people are not ready to believe that the fortune made by his family may be the result of hard work of years.

This is the most devastating time for the establishment; the era of social media in which is involved a constant penetration of ideas. There is but no way to control it. It doesn't matter what the reality is; what is required is the presentation of an idea. Social media is a double-edged sword for every strong entity. It can give one an opportunity to shatter the opponents in a brink of time. Though the downside is that it could also backfire.

The mere breaking of the news that Nawaz Sharif's family owns a fortune in the UK was enough to crack the wall, which ultimately fell anyway. This time though, in fact, for the first time in history the same has happened to a man in uniform while he is still up and running.

As usual, the conservatives are tagging this episode as a conspiracy by the foreign agencies whereas the more inclined towards democratic values are asking for money trails. In fact, they now are seeking vengeance. Vengeance for the constant subjugation to the gun.

Even if General Bajwa is innocent of the charges, his prestige has undoubtedly been dented irrevocably. All that is left now is that chatter. Not too long ago, a justice of the Supreme Court, Justice Qazi Faez Isa, and his family had fallen into the same ditch.

With respect, the difference between the two after having been accused of 'unjust enrichment' is obvious: Justice Qazi Faez Esa presented himself before the court of law despite all odds; this is how an honorable man fights his fight.

Whereas, Bajwa is hiding behind the uniform. It may be that all the allegations against him and his family are false but still has remained such a powerful man, he should have cleared himself rather than relying on the ‘5th generation warfare’ enigma. This is exactly what General Pervaiz Musharraf did. This evasion from accountability and law is disgraceful.

Is that how a general wants to be remembered after years of his service to the country?

The petty little, as well as big battles for power enshrined in the history, has led us to this chaotic state of affairs. Why blame PTI? PTI’s failure in governance is not that big a problem; it was bound to fail anyway. It is this constant pick and choose from the penthouse that is paralyzing the country like cancer.

People are angry. Apart from the followers of EST-PTI nexus, the ones who have to much to spare, almost every person is upset and derailed. The economy has drowned, foreign relations are in abeyance, religious hatred amongst different groups is at the peak, and among other things.

The majority of the people of Pakistan are poor and up until two years ago at least they were in what may be called a 'liveable' Pakistan. And the rich are insecure. They would rather flee Pakistan rather than see their assets dissipate into a bad economy.

In the quest for permanently deleting the political parties from the system and aligning one single party for the ultimate welfare of the establishment, the whole system is now living dangerously.

A clash of the titans is never the solution in this scenario. The reason for that is that there are no titans here. It is not that Mandela is in jail and as soon as he comes out things would miraculously change or that Tayyab Erdogan is just about to make an enthusiastic speech that would make men lay in front of the tanks. All that is here is a bunch of power-seeking selfish individuals, some are civilians and the others in uniform.

This constant battle between the establishment including its subsidiary government and the ones who are not in the government has crippled the state of Pakistan. Since we have nothing of our own, except a weapon we keep bragging about, we have no option but to appease our creditors. Every creditor country, whether it is China or the US, has its own agenda in the advancement of its aid. In the midst of this, Pakistan's agenda has gotten lost in the middle.

If perhaps, the bosses for this just one time, restart the system and let the people choose the government for themselves in a fair and transparent election, this one thing might just do the magic. If not, the establishment will end up just like Peoples Party which chose to do nothing while the rain was not and there was time to plan for an effective sewerage system. Doing this will immediately boost the economy and the superpowers will be more inclined to look at our interests in conjunction with their own. Right now we are getting hammered from all sides.

Why let the political system become strong? Why not? And why not now? All the Bajwas, Sharifs, Khans and Tareens are in the last quarter of their lives. They better leave a better Pakistan for us.


The author is a barrister practicing law in Peshawar and Islamabad. He graduated from Cardiff University. The author can be reached at