Monday, May 14, 2007

Tyranny Descends on Pakistan

There is no doubt in my mind that sections of the Pakistani media are now being actively muzzled after their valiant defiance in showing the true face of this ugly regime over the last couple of months. On the website of "The News" there was no report all day on the cold-blooded murder of the Supreme Court additional registrar and CJP loyalist Hammad Raza in Islamabad. Even the New York Times has a full blown story on it already, by their reporter Salman Masood. As if to confirm my fears "The News" finally has a story on this episode but it is about the MQM chief condemning Hammad Raza's murder rather than the news item itself.

I will not criticize the media for succumbing to this extreme coercion while working in an environment of constant threats and extreme insecurity as they are and have been doing a courageous job of standing up to unjust authority. However, I would implore the journalists and media owners to resist, to the best of their abilities, this new phase of darkness being imposed by a government which cares for nothing but the perpetuation of its illegal and authoritarian rule. This valiant effort of the people to reclaim political space from a usurping military should not go to waste. The end result of this struggle needs to be an independent judiciary, free media, a strengthened rule of law and a return to civilian rule.

Here is to the hope that the people of Pakistan will soon escape the yoke of this latest self-styled uniformed savior and will overtime (with painstaking effort) build a democratic polity that can produce civilian leaders worthy of governing this country and able to build a decent state for its people.

7 comments:

albela rahi said...

Fawad,

Again great posting. In summary reviewing matters from afar, the state can no longer be trusted, let alone protect anyone!! Understand that Hammad Raza, had just told someone that he would write a Hammad-nama (expose) when asked what actually is going on!!

albela rahi

albela rahi said...

Another bomb blast in Peshawar 25 dead! Where are we going? Reliable sources quoting may be a dilleberate attempt to divert attention from the tragic Hammad Raza case that you wrote about. Feel the end (of this current reign of a sham democracy is about to end) People in Pakistan betting on date of martila law. Can you picture it, in combat fatigues, "meray aziz humwatno, Jab qanoon kay rakhwalay, or insaf karnay walay hee qanoon tornay lagin or na-insafi karnay lagain, to mujhe kuch karna hee tha, Pakistan First", I had no choice. Pity the nation for we have come full circle.

God help us.

the olive ream said...

A great blog. It is only unfortunate, that I discovered it so late.

I shall peruse your blog wares more frequently from now on.

Love your work!

Fawad said...

Olive Ream,

Thanks for your kind comments.

Rahul said...

Read your posting with a lot of interest. What is happening in Pakistan right now is very very interesting. A situation like this in which the middle class or educated/everyday people are coming out on the streets is a welcome sight(In fact, I can't think of similar activism ever happening in India). I just hope this movement does not deteriorate into violence or become an armed struggle. It would only lead to problems for Pakistan and for its neighbours. Once you pick up the gun (no matter how ethical/great the cause)it does not leave a region/culture easily. Thankfully, Indian civil society has not yet seen this, though we have our own legacy of strikes, hartaal and chakka jaam leftover from the Indian freedom movement.
Keep updating.
Regards,
Rahul

Fawad said...

Thanks Rahul. I will try to keep writing my opinions as events unfold. This is a very important struggle for Pakistan's civil society and it is important that it stay peaceful and free of religious fundamentalist influence.

Salman said...

Juts for your interest, here is a piece I wrote about the media and the pressures these days:

http://www.iht.com/articles/2007/05/16/news/pakistan.php