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Responding to Pakistan’s Emergency: Aaj bazar mein pa-bajolaaN chalo

Posted on November 6, 2007
Filed Under >Adil Najam, ATP Mushaira, About ATP, Poetry, Politics, Society
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Adil Najam

These are distressing times. But this is not a time to be depressed.

This is a time, as Owais reminds us in his last post, to reaffirm our hopes for the future. True defeat would be to give up on those hopes. I have put up the splash image (on the front page) that I have to reassert and to remind ourselves that ultimately Pakistan will be what we make of it. Emergency or no emergency, no one can snatch our Pakistaniat from us. Not until we ourselves surrender it!

Back in May, at a moment of similar desperation, I had written a post where I had sought “solace in the one place where I always find it. In poetry. Especially in Faiz Ahmed Faiz’s poetry.” The video clip I had used there is worth repeating here.

I had written then – and it seems even more pertinent today to repeat it:

Here is Faiz – in his own words, in his own voice. The second half has the same poem masterfully sung by Nayarra Noor. Enjoy this rare find of kalam i Faiz, ba zaban i Faiz. But more than that, think about what he is saying and how it relates to what is happening today.

What I had to say (including about US role) I said at length in an NPR Radio show today (or here). But what Faiz has to say is far more profound.

The words of Faiz certainly cut deeper than anything I can say. They are an invitation to action. But they are also an invitation to thought. An invitation to responsibility. An invitation to continuing the struggle no matter what. An invitation to keep moving onwards despite the odds. An invitation to celebrate the spirit of defiance of those who will not give up.

I had ended that post by reaffirming ATP’s committment “to celebrating all the diverse trials and tribulations of being Pakistan … the mundane as well as the profound; the sad as well as the gleeful; the immediate as well as the long-term.” It is time, today, to repeat that commitment.

This is our commitment to Pakistaniat. We love Pakistan not because everything is right in it. But despite that which is clearly not right. And with a commitment to make right that which has gone astray. Ameen.

145 Comments on “Responding to Pakistan’s Emergency: Aaj bazar mein pa-bajolaaN chalo

  1. November 6th, 2007 2:28 am

    we need to stand up to face this crisis unitedly. and musharaf should realize that we do not need him.

  2. jyoti says:
    November 6th, 2007 3:35 am

    “These are distressing times. But this is not a time to be depressed.”- How very true. Since yesterday, when I saw pictures/ tv footage of Pakistani lawyers being beaten up and still standing up to face the brutal force to defend their independence, I have been reminded about the stories of freedom struggle agiant the British empire. I think Pakistanis should be proud of the way their country is reacting to emergency. All peaceful, but all brave. Yesterday the lawyers came out and today the students of Lahore university came out to defend their freedom. I read stories how Gandhi ji and other leaders faced the wrath of British force for years before we could obtain freedom. I see the same determination in Pakistani lawyers to retain their freedom. Twice, within six months they have faced and defied the might of brutal force. Shouldn’t this be enough to give you hope for the future?

  3. Salman Niazi says:
    November 6th, 2007 4:16 am

    Apologies to be off-topic! Can someone provide a softcopy/ image of the Supreme Court decision agains the government?

    Thanks in advanve.

  4. Aqil Sajjad says:
    November 6th, 2007 5:00 am

    Have people read the daily times editorial today and yesterday?

    Like PPP, Najam Sethi is falling well short of outrightly condemning the martial law. Yesterday, he was instead more interested in saying how wise he was on the transformation vs transition debate. Someone needs to tell this egoistic man that while this was a perfectly legitimate debate before the martial law, now it is not the time to get into it. Instead, there should be a clear condemnation of Musharraf as well as all others who are supporting him or playing noora kushti, including Benazir Bhutto.

    Najam Sethi has been regularly calling for a Mush-Benazir alliance in recent years and that is his one point pre-occupation. While he is perfectly entitled to his likes and dislikes, not coming through with a full fledged condemnation of both Musharraf and Benazir after the martial law makes him an apologist right now.

    The issue is very clear and it is about time that we all strongly condemned Musharraf as well as all those who are siding with him. The intellectuals who have been regularly projecting Benazir as a democrat should now decide whether they like BB more than democracy and we should all reject them if they do not stop supporting her despite her complicity.

  5. Jamshed Nazar says:
    November 6th, 2007 5:16 am

    Hello All!

    unfortunately, I am not in Pakistan right now – otherwise, I would also take part in these demonstrations.

    When the goverment uses extreme force against unarmed civilians, it is justified to use armed means to take this Goverment down. I think an armed struggle from the cities is the next step.

    It is such a shame that our Army brings out its armed cars and guns and tanks againsts its own citizen and when faced with serious enemy forces like Amercicans / Indians – does not have the guts to fight.
    What is the use of all these nukes? better have few armed citizens ready to fight for their rights than to have these nukes and huge useless armies.
    In the 21st century, the Army is the biggest liability – neither the Amercians understand this nor the Pakistanis. Look at Europe, China, India, Russia, Brazil – their economies are booming due to productive work and not “strategic depth wars” and “regime changes” around the world.

    Infront of the Indians, the General President retreated from even the basic principles of UN resolutions for elections in Kashmir. If this Army cannot take a principled stand and has the spine to fight for its people then this Army have no right even to a single peice of bread.

    In the last three martial laws,
    This Army let go of politics in ’71 when it was really humiliated with a big defeat in the field. This Army again retreated in ’88 when the Americans took out Zia in the air and the collaborators within the army ranks did not have the guts to cliam Zia’s place. Only in Ayub’s time, the Army just changed its figure head from one to another – the reason being that shit had not hit the fan at that time.
    From our recent history, it is quite clear that there is no chance that this Army will let go of the helm of politics unless humilited and kicked out. To expect some sense from these generals is asking for a bit too much.
    The problem is not only Musharaff – but all his buddy generals and their slave mentality towards America.
    There have been exceptions like the honarable general who resigned before Musharraf was appointed, but the vast majority of them are just power hungary.

    When the Army and the Police is so brutal with its people, what option do they leave for the unarmed people who want a change? Only one way is left and this is armed struggle.
    A peaceful struggle will result in another Husni Mubarik ruling Pakistan for the next 30 years.

    At this time, the only people who are giving a bloody nose to this Army are the jihadis, even though I do not buy their fundamentalist outlook, and I think the support for these jihadis will increase with the passage of time.
    Atleast they are fighting honarably.

    If moderate / liberal civil society does not undertake armed struggle, the opportunity will be taken over by these fundamentalists – this is already happenning.

    In my humble opinion, armed struggle is the way to go – and the direction should be to focus on the top leadership of this regime – and not at the innocent civilians – this should be left for the agencies itself.

    Is there an argument against this positition?
    unless people fight for their rights, there is no way they can get these rights.

    ordinary citizen somewhere out there,
    jnzi

  6. iFaqeer says:
    November 6th, 2007 5:25 am

    Exactly right, Adil. People see a picture and all they feel is shame for the 5 policemen beating up a lawyer; I feel nothing but pride, for I see one Pakistani putting his self on the line for his principle. People see a media blackout; I see journalists that a dictator has no choice but to ban.

    As with the earthquake in 2005, we have started information collection at:

    http://pakistan.wikia.com/wiki/Emergency_2007

    this includes trying to monitor and check up on the status of detainees:

    http://pakistan.wikia.com/wiki/Emergency_2007_Detainee

    and a bulletin board of sorts for events:

    http://pakistan.wikia.com/wiki/Emergency_2007_Events

    By way of background, WikiPakistan is an Information Database about Pakistan, Pakistanis and the diaspora hosted by Wikia, a community destination supporting the creation and development of wiki communities and run by a lot of the same people who run the Wikipedia. The site is at http://pakistan.wikia.com/ and background information can be seen at http://pakistan.wikia.com/wiki/Pakistan:About . It is an open database that anyone can edit and is developed under a Free Document License. [Contributors should be aware that if they choose to post material there directly, they are agreeing to release it under the GNU Free Documentation License. Please see http://www.wikia.com and WikiPakistan for further details.] Contributors are encouraged to click on the “Create an account or log in” link in the top righthand corner of every page and create an account. You do not need to provide any personal information.

  7. Yousuf says:
    November 6th, 2007 6:07 am

    who were those people being hanged? when was this?

    I feel helpless. There’s so much I want to do. To come out and protest but as working middle-class individual I find it hard to do. I cant risk being arrested. I think many people reading these articles might agree with me.

    This govt. is not even letting peaceful protests pass thru. What else can be done?

  8. omar r. quraishi says:
    November 6th, 2007 6:33 am

    this website has been quoted in a story in the Guardian today

  9. Naseer says:
    November 6th, 2007 6:52 am

    Adil,
    a great reminder of Faiz for us all.
    This is what I call –
    Back to Oblivion !!!
    Regards
    Naseer

  10. omar r. quraishi says:
    November 6th, 2007 7:03 am

    glad you noticed that aqil

    Editorial, The News, Nov 6, 2007

    Filling the jails

    The country’s jails are fast filling up as ever greater numbers of miscreants and extremists, dangerous men and women all, arrive at their gates. They come by the van-load, bumped and bruised, battered and beaten, having been detained after being caught red-handed in the act of committing a felony — a felony usually taking the form of standing in the road and waving a banner or, at the more serious end of the spectrum, shouting a slogan. This includes hundreds of lawyers who have been brutally beaten and arrested nationwide as well as members of civil society voicing their protest against the whims of one man bent on pushing the country to ruin. Some of those newly sampling life in jail have clearly crossed the boundary into out-and-out terrorism — they have declared themselves to be politicians, no less, and have been duly carried off to await an uncertain fate.

    Curiously, none of these dangers to the security of the nation appear to have been — at the time of their arrest or detention — in possession of anything more lethal than a fine legal mind, a couple of ball-pens and some hastily scribbled notes. Some of them come equipped with the kind of intellect that can stop a man dead in his tracks at a hundred meters. Others possess yet more dangerous weaponry — they have the ability to string half-a-dozen words together coherently whilst at the same time holding several conflicting ideas in their head at the same time — self-evidently, they are all individuals likely to shake the pillars of society to their foundations. Which is why they are being locked up

  11. Akash says:
    November 6th, 2007 7:10 am

    Real democarcy comes from burning desire from pepole to be free from whims and fancies of an autocrat.
    I remember the time when emergency was imposed by Mrs Gandhi. I was about a 11 year old child then. I remember the dislike we could feel among the people towards Emergency. It is this level of dislike among the Indian citizens that ultimatly lead to her removal. This was also a great lesson for political parties that you have to let go the power when people do not want you to be in power.
    Another example is Nepal. 20 years back no one could have imagined that the Nepal would become a democratic country and is on the way to beome a republic (after removing monarchy). King was like a god to them. Again the strong will of its people is making this change happen.
    I think for the first time in past 60 year people of Pakistan has seriouly made their mind to get their freedom back of autocratic rule. If this reflect on the street they will have their own democracy.
    May god bless the People of Pakistan.
    Akash (India)

  12. Rafay Kashmiri says:
    November 6th, 2007 7:14 am

    Please do not monopolise Pakistaniat to Faiz,
    millions of Pakistanis do not agree with Faiz,
    so we will not come out like old age Majnou
    with iron chains around the ankles, we should
    come out like muslims in Pakistan must do,i.e.
    courage, tenacity, arguments, and no theatre

    Pakistaniat Zindabad, Dehriate Murdabad

  13. omar r. quraishi says:
    November 6th, 2007 7:17 am

    Editorial, The News, Nov. 6, 2007

    US role & reaction

    The United States is in a real soup after the second Musharraf coup against his own self. Statements of top US leaders betray a sense of helplessness in the White House, the State Department and the Pentagon. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice has come out strongly demanding that Musharraf should quit his army post and Pakistan should move towards elections under the constitution. She also said America would review its aid package to Pakistan and implicitly, but belatedly, also admitted to a serious US policy flaw in relying too much on Musharraf which Washington has been doing for the past six years. Defence Secretary Robert Gates on Monday asked Musharraf to return his country to a law-based, constitutional and democratic rule as soon as possible saying that the state of emergency and suspension of the constitution was a disturbing development. A White House spokesman chipped in, saying that the move was unfortunate. The defence secretary further said that the US was reviewing all assistance programmes and the Pentagon also later said that it was suspending its annual defence talks in Islamabad scheduled to begin today. Influential US senators have been talking even tougher. The chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, Democratic Senator Joe Biden, has been severely critical of the Bush administration’s “Musharraf policy” saying that this is why Washington’s options are now limited. He also said that he would be pushing the US president for a review of the relationship to make it focus on channelling aid to help moderates in Pakistan.

    Another influential member of the US Senate, Republican Senator Arlen Specter said he would not support American aid to Pakistan with the new development since these were against the cause of democracy. The senator said that America needed to get “very tough with the dictator”. It should be remembered that these are not empty words, because those who have spoken them do have the power to influence policymaking in America. Many US think-tanks and analysts had been for days cautioning the Bush administration of the consequences of a policy that relied too much on a dictator who was fast losing popularity and his grip on power — and their warnings have now become reality. A change in US policy is thus very much on the cards, especially when one considers that both houses of Congress are controlled by the Democrats, who have been at odds with President Bush over his handling of the war on terror and specifically Pakistan. Besides, many Americans will question the sending of billions of taxpayer dollars to prop a military dictator who has ravaged the constitution and trampled on human rights and the press in his own country. It would be fair to say that Washington’s continued display of support for General Musharraf is crucial to his survival. The nature of the emergency — which is nothing more nor less than a severe martial law — is such that this support may well be coming to an end.

    The US is only worried about the war on terror and the 24,000 US troops next to the troubled Pakistani tribal areas. If Washington gets assurances from Pakistani power brokers and stakeholders that its interests will be watched, personalities may no longer be of interest to it. Right or wrong, the US has acquired a balancing role in Pakistan’s domestic power games. It is time now that it stood on the side of democracy and stopped working with an autocrat whose only objective seems to be to preserve his own rule at any cost, regardless of what happens to his country and its people.

  14. MQ says:
    November 6th, 2007 7:26 am

    Aqil Sajjad,

    Yes, you are right. Daily Times editorials have been very soft on the Emergency. I think the Businessman in Najam Sethi has taken the better of the the liberal journalist in him.

    Meanwhile, there was a small but vociferous protest yesterday on the Fifth Avenue near the Pakistan Consulate in New York today. Many of the participants were young men and women of Pakistani origin from Columbia University. They were carrying placards with messages like Down with Emergency, Down with Martial Law etc. and were raising slogans.

    There is a lot of foot traffic in this area and people were amused by the noisy protest but were not sure what was the protest about and what country were we representing. One older American approached me and curiously pointing to the placard I was carrying,

  15. Adam Insaan Khan says:
    November 6th, 2007 7:40 am

    -in days of college my professor teaching in history, told us 2 things that are standing crystalclear for me , the day today ;

    1) History repeats itself…..
    2)The pen is more sharpen than the sword/ (or the gun)…..

    Let us all tell and conduct in different ways this message to
    Gen Musharraf and all those in the Army from cadets to Generals those whom are defending this Cruelty , this profound disrespect of Pakistan and Pakistanii`s, We the people of Pakistan are the true developers/inheritors of The future of PAKistan.

    -from a Pakistani in Europe.

  16. Mutazalzaluzzaman Tarar says:
    November 6th, 2007 7:41 am

    What is the point of such cliched posts? This is a time for action – not feeling good about ourselves. A lot of people visit ATP and so, ATP should be organizing protests and bringing people out in the US and Canada instead of quoting Faiz yet again. There is only one side in the right here and the ATP editors need to take a firm and official stance on that instead of hiding behind Faiz.

  17. Neena says:
    November 6th, 2007 7:49 am

    If Musharaff stepped down then who will lead us. I don’t see any leader capable of running the country right now. Let

  18. Aqil Sajjad says:
    November 6th, 2007 7:57 am

    Thanks MQ.

    I have sent daily times a couple of e-mails and urge others to do the same to protest their complicity.

  19. Usman Akram says:
    November 6th, 2007 8:07 am

    Understand this: ‘We are in transition state from army rule to complete democracy and the transition project manager is Musharaf. ‘

    He ran the country by himself , then he worked with a democratically selected governement to run the country and now he was just few weeks away from leaving uniform and few months away from ellections which would have restored complete democracy and then he would have had to get vote of confidence from new parliment.
    Those who say Leave Musharaff are Idiots with capital ‘I’. Can you appoint someone CEO of an Insurance company who has no expereince at all, NO!, he will bring it to ruins without knowing business logistics, how the finances are managed and having years of experience working in insurance business. In similar fashion, Musharaff is the ideal person who knows where are army stands on various issues (terrorism, border security, neuclear issue) ,where Pakistan stands in external affairs, where our governance stands and where our economy is heading. You cannot replace him overnight with someone else and expect things will be fine there after, IMPOSSIBLE!.

    PLEASE LET HIM DO THE JOB!, PLEASE!

    Besides, media deservers the crack down and all those who protest or cross any limits against the gov orders should be punished which ever way they deserve. All over the world including india, if police marks a crime scene or puts security around an area (gov buildings) no one crosses it!, but in Pakistan, People do not respect any boundries, what happened to media in islamabad few months back and what is happening to lawyers in lahore is well deserved.
    They talk about justice, they actually sit in their office eat haram and never help poor people or fight for justice!

    I do not want musharaff to stay as president, but for God’s Sake let this transition happen

  20. Naseer says:
    November 6th, 2007 8:12 am

    Mr Niazi, you can find ‘our’ Supreme Court order at NY Times of Sunday which is a scanned image.
    Maybe Adil can do it.

  21. syed ali raza says:
    November 6th, 2007 9:15 am

    i just watched a so called POITICAL COMMENTATOR refer to the LAL MASJID TERRORISTS AS “MASOOM BACHAY” who were slaughtered by this GOV’T, iam sorry that statement alone made by this individual sitting next to a MEDICAL DOCTOR who has no JOURNALISTIC BACK GROUND tells me that the reality in PAKISTAN is so skewed, that there is no hope, the fact that MUSH Imposed emergency no matter how bad of a decision does not deny the fact that i with my own very eyes saw every PRIVATE CHANNEL refer to the SWAT/WAZIRISTAN THUGS in very ambigious TERMS, & i also noted that the SUPREME COURT & THE MEDIA were very SYMPATHETIC to their cause which only means one thing & that is that no one else besides the MAJORITY is welcomed in PAKISTAN & every body knows what iam talking about, I GIVE UP!!

  22. ivehadit says:
    November 6th, 2007 9:19 am

    reuters is saying the police is being given cash bonuses for arresting lawyers and that there are no courts to which the arrested can go to to seek their release. what are we coming to?

  23. Adnan Ahmad says:
    November 6th, 2007 9:28 am

    Long while ago I was at a literary gathering with a few big names participating in it. In the earlier part a young man in an almost rundown appearance came and quickly read a brief poem and left without waiting for the appluase. People were just speechless by the depth of his lines. Even though I don’t remember the last two lines or gentleman’s name, the part I remember is enough to portray the current story being repeated yet again. The lines are worth understanding and may even be taken as subtitles of a great shot of army boots you have up top occasionally.

    Ghar kia hay, bazaar mein jaisay, sarak pari baisudh

    Jiss purr chaltay paa

  24. Rafay Kashmiri says:
    November 6th, 2007 9:48 am

    To all Pakistanis,

    Are you sincere with Democracy ??

    Pakistani nation, journalists, Politicians, lawyers,
    intellectuals, media, has witnessed with a criminal
    silence, the kidnapping and forced exile of an elected
    PM with satisfaction arranging the side taking policy
    in favour of dictators candidates, without even 5 grms
    of shame in their physique.

    What is the defference between you all on one side, and
    Ayub, Yehya, Bhutto, Zia, Musharraf and all other
    dictators the likes of Pinochet in attendance.???
    and
    of course, when your Dr. Shahid Masood of Geo confirms
    that the west’s influence is very important in Pakistan’s
    Politics, are you still living in colonialism ???

  25. Javaid Aziz says:
    November 6th, 2007 9:51 am

    It is no time for poetry.
    It is time for action and sacrifice.
    Aqil Sajjad has framed the issue very well.
    We need to decide which side we are on.
    Are we with the Constitution (and the Flag)
    or we are in the same “petition maintainablity” discussion?
    Mohtarma Fatima Jinnah showed us the light against a
    Dictator who won temporarily(her symbol was the candle wick
    lamp called Laltain).
    As young students, distributing these Lailtains we would get our noses bloodied by the force of the Dictator.
    It is very clear in the Guardian as stated by Ch. Shujaat that Martial Law was the only way.(“Chaudhry Shujaat Hussain, president of the ruling Pakistan Muslim League-Q party, said a friendly supreme court judge leaked the information to the government last Wednesday.

    “He said the verdict may be unanimous, so we had no choice,” said Mr Hussain. “The debate was whether to impose emergency before or after [the court ruling].”)
    If an Army man violates his oath then he should be punished.
    Do we have the guts to stand up and hold our Flag high and punish the Army man who desecrated it?
    So it is time to sacrifice and stand up and read the Constitution———-not Poetry!

  26. Mutazalzaluzzaman Tarar says:
    November 6th, 2007 9:55 am

    Well said, Javaid Aziz sahib. I completely agree with your sentiments.

  27. Adam Insaan Khan says:
    November 6th, 2007 9:58 am

    Pakistan Army has to be the servant of the PAKISTANI inhabitants
    The PAKISTANII

  28. Abid says:
    November 6th, 2007 9:58 am

    The forces for change are being let loose all over the world. The Pakistani Awam
    will also start to mobilize in large numbers, if they see a viable alternative to the current crop of incompetent, opportunistic and corrupt politicians.

    Unfortunately, at this juncture, they must settle for the second best. Imran Khan may not be the perfect solution, but is definitely a better alternative to BB, NS or Mush. But the Pakistani Awam is not willing to stick its neck, unless they see both the viability and possibility, of an alternative system.

    And with time and struggle, as the alternative and the possibility for change are more visible, than the Pakistani Awam will start to come all out and there will be a rising. But for that to happen, what is needed is credible and trustworthy individuals of impeccable character who will not settle for the half-baked truth or Band-Aid solutions.

    What is needed in Pakistan at this juncture is widespread organization and mobilization not only around a particular liberal or religious issues but a movement for a complete overhaul of the present System.

    We can only be hopeful that that day will come soon. This is no time for siesta, this time for change.

  29. Lahori says:
    November 6th, 2007 10:05 am

    For the person who asked. the picturs in this video are of korray and beheadings during the Zia era.

  30. ali says:
    November 6th, 2007 10:17 am

    Our pathatic private media who only knows one thing “surheeyan banana”, old tradtion among the jornalist community of Pakistan. Please understand the situation we are faceing a facist Mullah who is promoting a false image of Islam and traitors of Pakistan in the form of ARD. Pakistan is a soveriegn country and Mushy knows that it is about time to get the francastine of Mullah out of Pakistan along with its religion of hatered (not Islam). We have a bad habit of only cricising and when asked solutions we look upone each others faces. If anyone of you are criticising then please dare enough to give a propler solution. Qoman hangamon sa nahee soch sa bantee haaan.

  31. Emad says:
    November 6th, 2007 10:29 am

    Yes the brave and able among us struggle, but we struggle against what? We are united at least in our thoughts against this emergency and eventually against the lost cause i.e. Mr. Musharaf, but what options do we have? Democracy? Are we all on the same boat to go all the way or are we just clearing path for the next beast to eat us alive as a nation i.e. our beloved politicians (all of them). Can we not bring a revaluation, can we not sacrifice our today for a better tomorrow.

    I know it all sounds a bit too ambitious, maybe a bit unrealistic as well, but isn

  32. ali says:
    November 6th, 2007 10:30 am

    Democracy is just a fraud. Please tell me which party of Pakistan execises democracy. You have bibi in PPP, molans in MMA ect. Have you ever seen new faces in these parties?? Have you ever thought that if these parties done exercise democracy themselves then how come they will exxercise while in power?? Regarding laywers, when the verdict came against them they protested cuz they only wanted there hagimony to prevail. This tells about Pakistani laywers and how law abiding citizens they are. Please use brains now brawns. Give strong argument and solutions, it is very easy to cricise. The wolrd doesnt like a nuclear emerging Pakistan.

  33. Javaid Aziz says:
    November 6th, 2007 10:34 am

    The best written essay that we need to read today is the Supreme Court Verdict in Asma Jilani case declaring Yahya Khan a usurper. Can anyone put this on some website or provide a link.
    Everyone has to earn his living. Justice Dogar decided to sit under a desecrated flag and earn his wages. We are working hard to earn degrees from Harvard, MIT and other schools to ultimately be gainfully employed.
    In the Viet Nam War era there was a chaplain at Yale University(http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/William_Sloane_Coffin). He was a light for us students(in USA) just as Faiz Saheb was a light for the 60′s generation of Pakistan.
    We need to have an open discussion (Bol, magar piyar say) and take our paths.
    There is always a fork in the road and we choose.
    Chaplain Coffin, in one of his essays, he explained the meaning of getting a Bachelor of Arts from Yale University. In brief, he said that this study is to make us live a better human life.
    I feel my flag was desecrated. Imagine the tanks of another country at the gates of the Supreme Court? Would I be sitting still? What is the difference that he was “one of us”? In such a case the punishment should be even quicker.

    The question is simple. Was the Constitution ripped? And do we have the guts, fear of failure should not decide a path, to cut this hand.

    Faiz Saheb says:”chalo hemen qatal ho ayeen”. (loose translation would be: let us be martyred).
    I disagree. With the fire of our intellect we should produce such a laser beam that it should reach far, far away and be able to cut a hand that rips the Constitution of our country!

  34. Qandeel says:
    November 6th, 2007 11:02 am

    Enjoyed the poetry/song. Demonstrations within Pakistan and by Pakistanis in the West… even rallying support via Facebook… is proof of our collective consciousness. Its there. The spirit is there.

    Shahid Masood and Ansar Abbasi were talking about the importance of this consciousness earlier on Geo. Most Pakistanis feel wronged, cheated, and the anger is likely to ferment overtime and create some real stir. At least I hope that it does and that Pakistanis, who’re used to such political kabuki, don’t become passive.

  35. pa(kiss)tani says:
    November 6th, 2007 11:06 am

    these idolators who have carved so many idols like Faiz, Iqbal and others cant take any steps on their own, they always need someone to look up to, for some faiz is a god for others Iqbal is a supereme deity, when will they start to follow their own Idealogies, they are intellectually stagnant and just happy to live in that state, they are infact ememies of light and enlightenment.

    there’s no Abraham amongst them who could smash all those idols with his AXE.

  36. sbaig says:
    November 6th, 2007 11:17 am

    Pakistan had never had a mature democracy, in one shape or form army
    has been ruling the country. For brief period Pakistan did have Nawazz Shareef and Benazir to jump start democracy but what these people looted the country.
    Pakistani constitution states that no one can become Prime Minister 3rd time, so why are we trying to amend the constitution for Benazir.

  37. Israr says:
    November 6th, 2007 11:22 am

    I faqeer thank you for the wikia Pakistan link

    Here is what i have done and would invite everyone to do some thing or join me in this effort
    position statement has been posted as an online petition you can now find the link at the http://pakistan.wikia.com/wiki/Emergency_2007
    or go directly to the petition
    http://www.ipetitions.com/petition/legalcourts/

    If you sign the petition and leave an email , we will come up with concrete thing s to do and reach you.

    The other idea i had was watching Geo If some one in Pakistan can arrange or thru online delivery can we order flowers to be delivered to a place for the Honorable Justices of the courts and Lawyers that are standing up to it,
    Create a symbolic place in a park or a house and have flowers delivered there.

  38. Javaid Aziz says:
    November 6th, 2007 11:24 am

    A wise man says:
    1. Musharraf lifting emergency and restoring constitution by Nov. 15.
    2.Justice Dogar issuing verdict before Nov. 15 that election is “regular”.
    3.Musharraf taking off uniform on Nov 14.
    4. Bush saying that he took off uniform.
    5.International opinion saying the Chief Justice internal matter.
    6.And Justice Dogar will be writing new poetry.
    “Doog, doogi baja ke,
    Insaf ka bazaar laga key
    Baitha aey Dogar dagmaga key
    Aa Bibi Bibi Aa aur daan deeti ja
    Main tera purana puristar.”

  39. Javaid Aziz says:
    November 6th, 2007 12:00 pm

    This is in response to Israr.
    Petition is a good idea for a man who can read the writ of common man.
    But Emergency would be gone by Nov.15.
    Flowers is a good idea. But if we hold a march for the Justices…..have large signs with each name and a flower in our hands and march around Harvard Square (and invite the media) , our message of love will reach the Judges.
    Announce the time and day.

  40. maniza says:
    November 6th, 2007 12:01 pm

    My translation of this inspirational poem by Faiz:

    Today In the market place, though chained and fettered walk!
    The misty eye, the fiery spirit , not enough
    The allegations of intense love, not enough

    Today in the market place, chained and fettered walk !
    Walk waving your arms– dance in ecstasy, walk!
    Walk to protest in sorrow, walk with blood splattered clothes, walk!
    Destiny awaits you, walk!

    The masters too, the masses too.
    The arrow of accusations too, the stones of abuse too,

    The unhappy daybreak too, the failed day too.
    Who else is their companion other then us?

    In the city of the beloved who is defiant?
    Who is worthy of the executioner’s hand?
    Take courage, wounded ones, walk!
    Let us once again go to be murdered–friends, walk!

  41. Adnan says:
    November 6th, 2007 12:07 pm

    hahaha javed aziz sahab!

    I have two wicked news. First is American Ambasoddor met Chief of Election Commissioner and *ordered* him to issue time table of Elections. Kia beghairti hey. Ameriki Election Comm se freely mil raha hay aur order deyraha hay. Will it not be much better if we become next state of US? much better than this slavery.

    Second pathetic news is that traders increased the price of house-hold goods. Bravo- Ayse qom per emergency nahi Genghis Khan ko rule karna chahye.

  42. Javaid Aziz says:
    November 6th, 2007 12:38 pm

    Adnan is right.
    But there is more news.
    The Justice Dogar Court sat and said: Eight Judges over rule the seven Judge decision.
    While Justice Dogar had said:there is no such decision.
    The wise man told about item 7 also but said it is a state secret.
    He said that what happens on Nov.20 after that it can be talked about.
    So, 13 more days.

  43. faraz says:
    November 6th, 2007 1:13 pm

    Do we have any fund to help those judges who resigns from courts. Nearly 70% of SC and 80% of Sind High court has been resigned.

    Is there is a way we can help those judges. I am sure many of them live hand to mouth.

  44. NONSENSE says:
    November 6th, 2007 1:15 pm

    Yaar, let people be inspired by whatever source, this repeating Fiaz every Friday is painful. Save the Fiaz stuff, let us hear some Najam stuff.

    In any case, since inception, Pakistan’s core strength has been to waste its time worrying about ‘external affairs’…. sooner or later the inside would atrophy. That process continues. I have so far only heard ‘democracy, democracy’ as though that will suddenly solve everything. Nothing will change until the ordinary Pakistani is educated, and two, the educated ones actually develop rationality, broadness and inward-vision. All lacking in the majority at the moment.

  45. Kosh says:
    November 6th, 2007 1:20 pm

    You know the situation has gotten out of control when President Bush starts writing poetry about Pakistan. It’s not Punjabi poetry by any stretch of the imagination, but see what you think of Bush’s haiku:

    http://www.newsgroper.com/george-w-bush/2007/11/06/peace-poetry/

  46. Desi says:
    November 6th, 2007 1:24 pm

    Matchless sophistry marks Daily Times’ backing of the Mush-BB deal and its soft line on Emergency. But I can see where Najam-Jugnu and Ejaz “ours-are-bigger-than-yours” Haider are coming from — they are ‘consensus is better than confrontation’ types. Unfortunately, there comes a time in the life of a nation when confrontation is preferable to consensus between kleptocrats, which is what is happening in Pakistan. Unless, the DT gang makes an unambiguous call on this one, one can only conclude that the belong to the same klepto elite — that their single malts are more important than the double whammy your pathetic commando is delivering to the country. Wake up, DT…your readers and constituents are ahead of you on this one.

  47. Javaid Aziz says:
    November 6th, 2007 1:29 pm

    Judges do not need a handout. They can live hand to mouth.
    Bhutto once said in a speech,” ……..we will achieve our objective. We will sleep on stones. We will eat grass. We will not compromise our dignity. ……….but we will make……….we will achieve our objective”. And then he asked:”…….mere saath chalo gay…..?”
    So, here is another man asking:”mere saath chalo gay?’
    http://paktribune.com/news/index.shtml?193822
    But he is asking:”sar utha key chalo gay?”

  48. omar r. quraishi says:
    November 6th, 2007 1:35 pm

    desi — well said — I am glad at least some people are seeing through what DT is doing on this issue

  49. baber says:
    November 6th, 2007 2:00 pm

    Found this on nytimes website….

    Dear Editor,

    I went to school in New York City. I spent almost 5 years in US and luckily experienced first hand the last US presidential elections. How I was impressed by the American democratic process. I felt that democracy is envied by the Americans. It is so important for them. And then the same Americans support dictators like Musharraf. He said in his speech that democracy is not for us? Democracy is a self refining process that grows and becomes strong with time. But regretfully it is not allowed to live and breathe in Pakistan. It is killed by dictators. You should know that supporting a dictator will simply not exterminate the Taliban or Al- Qaeda. It is for sure that it will give further vent to extremism and non-tolerance.What has hapened in the last 8 years? Has it subsided? It has grown and is growing further and has now clearly spread from the tribal areas to settled areas of the frontier province. I hope that the US policy makers understand this.

  50. Imad says:
    November 6th, 2007 2:20 pm

    Rafay Kashmiri says:
    November 6th, 2007 7:14 am

    Please do not monopolise Pakistaniat to Faiz,
    millions of Pakistanis do not agree with Faiz,
    so we will not come out like old age Majnou
    with iron chains around the ankles, we should
    come out like muslims in Pakistan must do,i.e.
    courage, tenacity, arguments, and no theatre

    Pakistaniat Zindabad, Dehriate Murdabad

    [sarcasm]So Rafay, what do you suggest the millions on non-Muslim Pakistanis do then? Or have you already condemned to death with your parting slogan of dehriate murdabad? Heck, might as well right… I mean we’ve already made them swear to our religious views on the passport form haven’t we?[/sarcasm]

    I wonder when we’ll condemn religious bigotry with the same fervour that we reserve for leaders who we hailed yesterday and hate today. It’s a pity that Pakistanis seek acceptance and self-validation from every entity on earth, yet we are so rooted in our ethnocentrism that we can’t see beyond the mold we were cast from.

  51. Deewana Aik says:
    November 6th, 2007 2:35 pm

    Kiyya khial hai, does this depict Musharaf’s situation well?

    http://commentisfree.guardian.co.uk/site_imagery/frontpicture_fullsize.jpg

    from Gaurdian

  52. November 6th, 2007 2:42 pm

    I have received a lot of drafts of petitions and signed statements etc…..and I am trying to make sense of where does the Pakistani nation stand on the current crisis. And frankly – I can’t make head or tail of it. Maybe my own knowledge is limited so I am hoping some friends here can help me understand:

    1. Do we want the emergency rule to go away, or Musharraf to step down from his military post?

    2. Do we want Musharraf to leave his uniform, or altogether disappear from the scene?

    3. Who or what are we proposing as alternatives? Politicians who spent time in self-imposed exiles or those who are sitting in the parliament now (and have been there for the past 10-15 years now)?

    4. How do we make sure that the different branches of the government operate without (a) stepping over each others’ toes while maintaining checks and balances, and (b) without indulging in activism for the sake of it? What does the nation think of Musharraf’s indictment against the judiciary and the media?

    5. How does the nation want to deal with the threat of extremism and terrorism? Do we even see it as a grave threat – or just another fact of life you just learn to live with?

  53. November 6th, 2007 3:01 pm

    Adil Bhai,

    Thanks for reminding us all of our greatest asset – HOPE.

    Pakistan will rise from this episode INSHALLAH with grace and dignity, it will be tough and it will require sacrifices but a stand has to be made for principles and that time has come for Pakistan. See my call to the nation in this regard at http://www.otherpakistan.org/archive.html

    Feimanallah Pakistan

    Wasim

  54. November 6th, 2007 3:03 pm

    Deewana,

    What a picture, it does say a thousand words.

    Go Musharraf Go.

    Feimanallah

    Wasim

  55. Steve says:
    November 6th, 2007 3:06 pm

    interesting EDITORIAL from INDIANEXPRESS

    http://www.indianexpress.com/story/236310.html

    Bilal, excellent questions.

    To Adil Najam, who I heard on NPR.

    Sure, the US should support democracy in Pakistan (which means denounce Musharraf’s current moves). Will Pakistan support the US desire to capture Osama and rid the society of radical-minded Islamists? I suspect you cannot promise the latter. So why should the US promise the first?

  56. November 6th, 2007 3:24 pm

    Today, I was witness to the worst of the State brutality. With every passing day, it is getting clearer what the present regime is about

  57. Yousuf says:
    November 6th, 2007 3:37 pm

    Yaar Wasim Arif Sahab, bus kar do. Go fix your site first. Get wordpress or some other professional software installed. It’ll take time, people will visit. But first! please post something solid and meaningful to discuss about. Musharraf isn’t going anywhere with “Go” chant.

    This is really wrong to promote your website like this.

  58. faraz says:
    November 6th, 2007 4:08 pm

    Bilal,

    I think Mush should leave both post. I will not say overnight but before election.

    I will like to keep “security coucil” and 58b should keep in place with subject to SC approval.

    I used to like Mush but I think he will no longer be tolerated by masses in Pakistan.

    As for SC, they should avoid activism and dont try to be heros.

    As for media, they are too sympathetic to terroist point of view. They give more time to mad man like Hamid gul or Imran then to liberal thinkers.

    The problem with Mush is that he is now become symbol of millatry dicatorship. Neverthless, I will say that we also need to make sure that SC dont interfere in executive branch. Media should be free and I dont support any curb on media.

  59. Aqil Sajjad says:
    November 6th, 2007 4:08 pm

    Can we please stop calling it an emergency and refer to it as a martial law instead. In reality it’s a martial law but the govt doesn’t want to use that word. Qaum kay liay yeh martial law hee hai; emergency musharraf ko hai kursi bachanay kay liay :)

  60. Stephen says:
    November 6th, 2007 4:08 pm

    I am an American and I am deeply concerned to hear this news. I can’t help but think how responsible for this my government is. Bush has not publicly called for a return to civilian rule, only through Secretary Rice and his Press Person.

    Americans are behind this uprising and we wish you all the strength to stand up to this “state of emergency”.

  61. Teresa Liddell says:
    November 6th, 2007 4:13 pm

    I am appalled by the declaration of Emergency Rule and the mistreatment of its own citizens, many of whom work the hardest to promote and uphold human rights in Pakistan. I am sad and sorry – and distressed to see this happening – and I worry about a very dear friend of mine, Salima Hashmi – I have heard reports that she has been arrested, and wonder if anyone has any news of her please?
    Many thanks
    Teresa

  62. faraz says:
    November 6th, 2007 4:15 pm

    If Mush had resigned from both post before, he would have made a name in history for nation building and for democracy but that time seems over now.

    I think 8 years are enough and we all are worried that if Pakistan is becoming another Egypt or Burma. Why we can not find leaders in nation of 160 millions.

  63. Khurram says:
    November 6th, 2007 4:25 pm

    @Bilal,

    We are a nation with no answers. Only bad choices. I think most of the people now screaming for Musharraf to go welcomed him with open arms when he first came to power. While that is true of how we treated almost every leader who has come to power – savior at first, pariah later – what I think is different this time is that Musharraf did steer us through very difficult times in the wake of September 11. I cannot think of any of our past leaders who could have done so. I cannot think of any of our future leaders who would be able to lead us successfully in current times.

    Before everyone goes “suo moto” on my ass, this is not meant to be a defence of Musharraf. This is just to say that unless we are clear in our thinking about exactly what we want as a nation (extremism or moderation, secularism or sharia, pro-West or anti-West, for peace with India or for war) we will continue to jump from one leader to another. The failure of our leaders is a reflection of our own failures as a people. We have to think more critically about our leaders: They are not all good, or all bad. We have to separate their actions from their intentions. Only then can we decide which of our leaders are worth our support.

  64. November 6th, 2007 4:32 pm

    Steve,

    I do not speak for Adil and he is far more eloquent than I but the answer to your question is yes. I and the majority of Pakistan’s 160m people want Osama dead, we want Al-Qaeda defeated and the like. However such achievements require the US and Pakistan to have a relationship based on the national interest, it should be as your very own Senator Joe Biden has said recently be ‘ a Pakistan policy not a Musharraf policy’ .

    I wish Americans and Pakistanis could sit together and chart a way forward and not the powers that be who ultimately serve their own agendas. Indeed the problems Al-Qaeda has created in Pakistan stem from this very problem as Pakistanis view Pakistan as a client state and the White House’s proclamations of ‘ do more’ have taken their toll. The result is the chaos we know suffer. I hope this helps but if you want to discuss this further, please feel free to visit my website at http://www.otherpakistan.org/archive.html or email me at wasim@otherpakistan.org

    God Bless

    Wasim

  65. faraz says:
    November 6th, 2007 4:33 pm

    Khurram, I agree that Mush lead us forward from 9/11 disaster. He build economy and media in Pakistan. But after 8 years, why he can not leave and established a system behind him which can take care of national interest.

    Now he is saying that will do it it he is given 5 more years as civilian president. He is even hugging most leader of current Pakistan BB.
    How people can trust him. And what about courts. they mau have over acted in some cases but now we just have monkeys in supreme court.

    If he had gave up his uniform in 2004, things were be different now.

  66. Khurram says:
    November 6th, 2007 4:37 pm

    I agree that Musharraf should go. It would definitely be ideal if he voluntarily gave up his position. It may be too late for him to be able to do so now. What scares me to death is another 4 years with either Mr. Sharif or Ms. Bhutto.

    Ideally, it would have been great if we actually had a plan for how to tackle some of our issues such as extremism. Given the way the wind is blowing on this site, I am about to make a very unpopular statement but I do not believe that Musharraf is to blame for all of our woes. He did not create Osama or the Taliban. One could argue that he did not deal with it as well as we would have liked him to, but he is not the cause.

    What is frustrating for me is that we scream “democracy, democracy” as if it will solve all our problems instantly. It will not. The US will not solve our problems: They have rewarded every military ruler and sanctioned every civilian government in the last two decades. The Chief Justice will not solve our problems: He is no longer a judge but a politician. My only hope is that under a democracy we will finally lose our last excuse for why Pakistan is broken (Musharraf) and will be forced to face the facts.

  67. Adam Insaan Khan says:
    November 6th, 2007 4:45 pm

    -just wondering………

    is it MUSH

  68. Asad says:
    November 6th, 2007 4:48 pm

    I also heard Najam Sethi’s interview on Geo. He was very very conciliatory towards Musharaf. He seemed more interested in projecting Benazir. If I am not mistaken The Daily Times is owned by Salman Taseer, one time leftist and PPP leader.

  69. Khurram says:
    November 6th, 2007 4:49 pm

    Steve,

    The US only wants what’s in its own national interest. That should not be a surprise to you. And I don’t blame or condemn the US for holding such a position. It is the rigt of every nation.

    So you should not be surprised if Pakistan decided to prolong / delay / play up the fight against the Taliban. It is in our national interest to keep the aid flowing as long as we can. Based on prior experience, as soon as the US gets what it needs, Pakistan’s interests get dropped like a smelly sock.

    The US not only needs to devise a Pakistan policy (instead of a Musharraf policy), but it needs to devise a long-term policy. Relationships are cultivated over long periods of time.

    That being said, we may have bitten off more than we could chew where the Taliban are concerned. So let’s hope for your sake and mine that we overcome this menace.

  70. November 6th, 2007 4:50 pm

    Bilal Bhai,

    Superb questions, they should form the main plank of the next post me thinks. But in short my views are as follows:

    1. Both
    2. Both
    3. Neither if I had the chance to decide, why not a government of national unity with people like Asma Jehangir, Pervez Hoodbhoy, Dr Adil Najam ( they cant do any worse!)
    4. Mush’s view is pure bull
    5. Yes its the biggest threat to our nation and needs to be tackled in the spirit of a national debate. Dividing you and me as secular liberals or conservative fundos does nothing and bombing the smitherins of the tribal areas whom have never felt part of Pakistan because we never cared about them until Uncle Sam picked up the phone and said ‘hey you got terrorists there’.

    I will expand on my plans/solutions for all of the above soon, perhaps via a guest post at ATP.

    Feimanallah

    Wasim

  71. November 6th, 2007 4:50 pm

    @khurram
    Let me apologize in advance if my comments hurt you.
    The whole issue currently is very straightforward. We have a dictator who does not have any morals, ethics and even not a human being. He is a mad bull who is bulldozing the whole nation.
    There was no problem of any suo moto notices , or release of extremist or hurdles in war on terror. The one and only issue was that the General was being declared as disqualified to be president of Pakistan by the upright judges of the supreme court.
    We have on one hand the mad General who will kill everybody who comes in his way, and on the other side we have heros like Chief Justice and his colleagues (both in Supreme Court and Hight) and people like Aitzaz Ahsan and his comrades (Lawyers) fighting for the supermacy of constitution in Pakistan.
    We are witnessing history in making , the people who support the mad general even uncociously (like you said “this is not meant to be a defence of Musharraf” ) , will and should feel ashamed of.
    Let me tell you this battle is being fought in the streets of Pakistan, the civil society of Pakistan , the poor lawyers, human right activists, students and everyone else fighting this battle may not won it in the short term, but they are creating a history.
    I can see the future (2026) telling my son, how there were these Judges and the Lawyers fought for the democracy and how people of Pakistan snatched their fundamental rights from the dictator by giving their blood. I would proudly tell my son that the Part II of the constitution of Pakistan was not given to us as favor by any ruler but it were the people who got each of the right described in that chapter by giving their blood.
    So please remember this is a question of “with us or with them” , and if in anyway you are not “with us” , then you are the same dictator whom we are fighting against.

  72. Rafay Kashmiri says:
    November 6th, 2007 5:23 pm

    Anpe mohn mian mithoo,
    Geo today,

    Big claims, self accreditations, big lies,

    logon ki ankhon mein dhool jhonkna,

    Apnay jaraim chopana, aur dousron par thopna
    to koii app say sikhay, Bravo

    O ji !! appna media hay, jo chahay bolo,
    Pakistanis are watching everything, their
    memories are not that weak !
    What state of paranoiad !!

    USA has given some instructions to
    Pakistani Election Commissioners

    Doob maro, Doob maro chilo bhar pani mein

  73. Viqar Minai says:
    November 6th, 2007 5:39 pm

    @Diwana-aik: Which one is Pervaiz?

  74. Bhindigosht says:
    November 6th, 2007 5:59 pm

    just an FYI. The DT editorials are written by Khaled Ahmed and not Sethi. The Friday times editorial is written by Sethi.

  75. Steve says:
    November 6th, 2007 6:04 pm

    Wasim/Khurram,

    I am glad you brought up the idea of national interest. This seems to be how nations interact at this point of human evolution. Within that framework, I just want to make the point that expecting the US to support/denounce Musharraf, as you see it, is not fair.

    The reason Pakistan may not be hand over Osama/fight the Taliban may be that its people dont want that fight, its army is too indoctrinated to fight only India, or its a way to keep the aid flowing. But a word of caution – there may be flipsides to this. The long term being the insidious radicalisation of broader sections in your own society. Two, more near term, the US deciding that it needs to fight its own battle, either via a Musharraf or as a foreign invading force.

    Personally, I believe, for longer term considerations, Pakistan should do everything to rid itself of the radical elements, including Osama, even if it happens to help/benefit the US. Not doing something cos it might be what a detractor/enemy wants will prove too costly eventually.

    Anyway, my whole point is that dont chide the US too much for its moves. They interact based on what they want. You still have the onus to do the right thing for your own good.

    FYI, I am not American.

  76. Javaid Aziz says:
    November 6th, 2007 6:12 pm

    Without comment:
    Afzal Khan writes from Islamabad

    President General Musharraf has summoned the National Assembly session
    to meet, ostensibly to approve a set of legislation to untie legal
    knots emerging from the supra-constitutional imposition of emergency
    last Saturday.

    Musharraf told diplomats on Monday that he needs to resolve certain
    legal issues before making a final decision on holding of elections.

    According to sources a law removing impediments in Musharraf’s
    election is on the top of assembly agenda. The law is prepared on the
    pattern of earlier dual office Bill adopted by Parliament in 2004 to
    allow General Musharraf to renege on his pledge to doff uniform
    towards the end of that year and let him keep both offices of
    president and army chief.

    The exception expires on November 15 and would be extended
    indefinitely. Additionally it will take care of a killing argument
    advanced by barrister Aitzaz Ahsan before the Supreme Court that the
    controversial Bill merely permitted the President to retain army
    office but did not exempt the army chief to indulge in political
    activities, including contesting for any public office.

    The proposed legislation will take retrospective effect to legalise
    October 6 election of General Musharraf through outgoing assemblies
    while still in uniform. Attorney General Qayyum Malik has already
    hinted at this option and a draft is now ready for adoption by
    Parliament. The upper House of Parliament, the Senate, will also be
    convened within next couple of days to ratify legislation approved by
    the assembly.

    A joint session of the two Houses would also be summoned later to
    approve the promulgation of emergency after removing a constitutional
    hitch under which the emergency can only be proclaimed by the
    President and is subject to a review by the Supreme Court. Musharraf
    imposed emergency as army chief to avoid these complications and to
    assume the unprecedented power of amending the Constitution.

    Another law being contemplated is to provide legal basis to the
    reconstitution of the Supreme Court in order to nullify the ruling
    given by a seven-member Bench headed by the deposed chief justice
    Iftikhar Mohammad Chaudhry and comprising six other defiant judges. it
    declared the emergency and the Provisional Constitutional Order (PCO)
    as illegal and ultra vires of the Constitution.

  77. Javaid Aziz says:
    November 6th, 2007 6:22 pm

    Asthere was Constitution for last five years, it was still illegal for an Army man to indulge in politics.
    I am only talking of the intellectual argument.
    And the Supreme Court Judges had no escape but to say so.
    Which meant court martial.
    That is why this time Aitzaz is in Adiala Jail alo.
    “The exception expires on November 15 and would be extended
    indefinitely. Additionally it will take care of a killing argument
    advanced by barrister Aitzaz Ahsan before the Supreme Court that the
    controversial Bill merely permitted the President to retain army
    office but did not exempt the army chief to indulge in political
    activities, including contesting for any public office.”
    Sometime the hand of fate acts in mysterious ways!

  78. Arslan Haider says:
    November 6th, 2007 6:24 pm

    Even in the time of these crisis, I will like to be positive. Of course I want to get rid of Musharraf. I will like to be proactive and start thinking who should I choose next. It’s matter of choosing a lesser evil. Out of the current lot, can anyone tell me who is lesser evil? I am sure this is a big question, if you really think hard and honestly you will realize that there is none that you can think of, who can lead us in the right direction. We have the worse dictator in history, and then we got the most corrupt women on earth (BB) and then we got even bigger egoistic, and corrupt Sharif. I am sure there will be quite a few hardcore followers who will deny that their leadership is not corrupt. Who you kidding .. been there and seen all that, not once twice.
    My point is all these efforts will lead us nowhere until someone realize that if they really want to see Pakistan as moderate country then they need to invest in the educational infrastructure and partnered it with media to allow the youth moderate voices heard.
    West gives billion of dollars, not for the betterment of Pakistan, but to keep its own agenda protected, which is normally implemented through the leader of time.
    All I will like to pledge is if the World realizes our sufferings then take the right steps otherwise stay out and mind your own business rather then projecting the next stooge of your choice

    My coments are in general, not to promote or degrade anyone. Just some true neutral feelings. unfortunately most of us Pakistanis have very short term memory. We tend to forget what we went through 10 or 15 years ago.

  79. November 6th, 2007 6:59 pm

    @Arslan Haider
    Choosing next or choosing best or choosing lesser evil is not the real point of democracy. Even in the most mature democratic countries , people will and do make the wrong choice. The most important aspect of a democratic and civilized society is “Rule of Law” and “Independant Judiciary” who can without any fear safeguard the fundamental rights of the citizens.
    The current battle is about the restoration of 1973 constitution , reinstatement of all the Judges and impelementation of 1973 constitution in its letter and spirit.
    Once this goal is achieved , yes election will happen, yes we will choose our representative, yes we will make wrong choice again yet we know because of “Rule of Law” and “Independant Judiciary” , we will be able to make these choices again and again.
    And I am sure we will be able to make a better choice of our representative sooner rather than later.

  80. Bhindigosht says:
    November 6th, 2007 8:23 pm

    From Amitav Kumar’s blog:
    “An old and dear friend from Karachi has just sent me this message:

    I was released from Central Prison earlier this morning at 4 a.m. However, hundreds of young lawyers have been imprisoned. Their families have no access to the detainees.

    We are under serious pressure. Everything is being monitored. Therefore, please request friends, without using any names of Pakistanis, to kick their representatives

  81. Javaid Aziz says:
    November 6th, 2007 8:35 pm

    Why do we mix personalities with the discussion of fundamental questions. The political discussions and value judgements are a separate issue.
    We need to answer these questions:
    Do we value our Constitution and our Flag that is a symbol of it?
    Do we stand committed to hold our Flag high like all other nations?
    Do we stand committed to cut any hand (irrespective of our political affiliations) that dares desecrate our Flag?
    Do we believe that all Pakistanis are equal among equals?
    Do we believe in the rule of Law (applied equally to all)?

    That green flag was not obtained without sacrifice.
    That green flag was obtained after the sacrifice of millions of our relatives who perished in the hope of holding it high one day.
    That green flag was not obtained that we appoint a man to safeguard it and he turns around to desecrate it.
    That green flag was not obtained that when it flies on the Supreme Court of Pakistan the trusted “safeguarder” should send tanks to surround it.

    Look at the picture of the New York Firefighters who raised the Flag on 9/11 while there was fire all around them.
    Do we have that commitment to our Flag?

  82. ashok sinha says:
    November 6th, 2007 9:28 pm

    i think it is time for people of pakistan to introspect. what has gone wrong. why is the land of the pure repeatedly getting into such mess! we are the same people here in india, may be that we look very silly sometimes, but we have hung on to our democracy. we faced turbulent times but we survived. why pakistan cannot do it. musarraf is not important, someone else would have done the same thing.what is destroying the dream that led to 14th aug?

  83. Javaid Aziz says:
    November 6th, 2007 10:03 pm

    what is destroying the dream that led to 14th Aug?

    The “conspiracy of silence” by the so called Pakistani Intellectuals.
    The Army has been so overpowering since the first year of Independence.
    First C in C defied Jinnah.
    Since 1857 we have been reading poetry and living under Baloch Regiment. In 1857 there was war of independence. Lukhnow and Delhi were razed. Who were the people who crushed the dreamers in these two cities? It was the Baloch Regiment. After 1947 they have carried on the ways of the British Masters as Pakistan Armed Company———just a name change from India Office(old Eat India Company).
    2007 will be remembered as the year when Pakistanis started the Freedom struggle under a Free Judiciary.
    Success or failure does not determine the validity of an Idea.
    But we have a Chief Justice who spoke under the Martial Law (http://www.bbc.co.uk/urdu/pakistan/story/2007/11/071106_iftikhar_audio_zs.shtml)
    and called on us all to defy the Dictator.
    The way the son of the Chief Justice of Sind High Court was brutalized can only be called a criminal act. Who is the criminal?
    Whatever designation he may give himself today he will meet his fate. He will be tried as a criminal.
    History tells us that all tyrants fall.
    (He is not even a clever tyrant. The two Judges who gave Lal Masjid back were the first ones to adorn his new court.)

  84. Tariq says:
    November 6th, 2007 10:27 pm

    Chief Justice and his band of brothers had given common Pakistanis hope. A hope that no matter whoever was in power, as long as they were there, Pakistanis need not worry. Their presence had given ornidary Pakistanis confidence in judicial system and brought them closer to constitutional rule.

    Pakistan’s founder was a lawyer and it’s saviours are also going to come from the lawyer community. This struggle should not end until the Chief and his brothers are restored to their rightful position, Mush is sent into exile to Jeddah (or better tried for high treason along with Shaukat Aziz and the Chauderies) and totally free elections are held under a government headed by Mr. Wajihuddin Ahmed.

  85. Kruman says:
    November 6th, 2007 11:11 pm

    Families of arrested lawyers worry for theri loved ones:
    http://free-pakistan.blogspot.com/2007/11/families-of-arrested-lawyers-worry-for.html

  86. Kruman says:
    November 6th, 2007 11:12 pm

    Chief justice addressing a rally yesterday:
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xqR_BFcS21s

  87. HAYAT says:
    November 7th, 2007 12:10 am

    THANK YOU FOR THIS WONDERFUL POETRY. THE SELECTION IS EXCELLENT AND THE CALL TO ACTION IS INSPIRING. GREAT CHOICE.

  88. Fahim Ali says:
    November 7th, 2007 12:29 am

    Declaration of emergency has put all to suffer who will protest against the Government. Also read about mass arrests during emergency at the following link:
    http://www.chowrangi.com/mass-arrests-in-the-wake-of-emergency.html

  89. Kruman says:
    November 7th, 2007 12:37 am

    “What shall we do now?” senior military commanders ask Musharraf.

    Articale by Syed Saleem Shahzad in Asia Times:
    http://atimes.com/atimes/South_Asia/IK07Df03.html

  90. Tahir says:
    November 7th, 2007 2:17 am

    By now Gen Musharraf has become a huge liability for the institution of Pakistan Army. Gen Musharraf has no exit strategy, because if he quits his COAS post, sooner or later he will be forced out of the Presidency as well, and after that his only options are exile or jail. But that’s his problem. There is no reason for the Pakistani general staff to any longer put the prestige and integrity of the army on the line for this expendable man. The army has already suffered an enormous loss of respect while sticking with Musharraf through all his misadventures since Oct ’99. Now, there is a real possibility that the army will be forced to fire upon its own citizens, and not just in South Waziristan, but in Lahore and Karachi. Sooner or later the generals are going to have to get rid of the shamelessly selfish General Musharraf, who has no qualms about dragging the army and the country through hell just to perpetuate his own rule. The sooner they do it, the better off Pakistan and Pakistan army would be.

  91. Yousuf says:
    November 7th, 2007 2:19 am

    We indulge too much in the present to look at the not so distant past. All that appears in recent memory is what has happened since March 9th. We need to look beyond that what got this country at this point.

    Interesting read : Pakistan shakes off US shackles at Asia Times.

  92. sada says:
    November 7th, 2007 2:31 am

    some of the immediate benifits of “emergency plus” regime are starting up. HEC’s site states: The meeting which was scheduled to be held from 6th to 8th Nov. 2007 between HEC, USAID and Ministry of Science & Technology under Pak-US Joint Academic & Research Program has been postponed due to unavoidable circumstances.
    ha ha ha, “unavoidable circumstances”!!!

  93. Mahmood says:
    November 7th, 2007 2:36 am

    I think “political correctness” is good but as a Pakistani we all know the actuall ground reality. Constitution, rule of law, uncensored media, democracy are good slogans and ultimate goals, but nations do not reach there in a fortnight. Especially sentimental nations like ours. I think Musharraf was on chief executive seat for 3 years himself, he made a transition to a controlled democracy and like or not it was his army uniform that kept this parliament intact otherwise all so called democratic forces tried there best to bring down the government. The champions of democracy should know that opposition is one of the beautiful aspect of democracy, however it should not go to the level that the country falls in chaos.

    Bush attacked another country, there is a huge financial set back to american economy on mortgage crisis, 30 million people america live below poverty line. Does judiciary start taking somotos? does media start make the life miserable for the government? Do people come on the streets? Becuase this is not the way democracy works. The way to bring the change is election.

    No government can work in Pakistan until the opposition realize that there task is to criticize but not to the level that government cannot function. Three of the 4 government of 90′s failed because the opposition went too far. IMHO

  94. sada says:
    November 7th, 2007 2:57 am

    Mehmood, I cannot agree with you! You have given some good examples from US but you are forgetting the fact of minimum threshold of tolerance and performance. In America, there is a functional government, largely responsive judiciary and at a level of a street man justice is still a recognized notion regardless whatever has happened at macro level politics in case of Iraq war etc. In Pakistan, what wrong judiciary has done? If few cases have been taken up as suo moto action, it was totally constitutional as none of other state institution is affording any relief to the people. Suppose you are among the missing persons, where would your parents or family members go other than Supreme Court? There was and still there is no forum for remedy? No body hears you simply! If SC has ordered that for God sake, these are also human being, at least listen to them then heavens fall and Musharraf started usual stereotyping by raising terrorism argument. Have you followed the missing people case where it has established that a guy who attempted to marry a relative of a big gun in army was put behind the bars for some unknown period and then he has been released under SC orders! Is it not ironical that Muhsharraf and the government was telling to the SC and rest of the world that some key nationalist leaders from Balochistan and Sindh have gone for Jihad and thus they were

  95. Mahmood says:
    November 7th, 2007 3:19 am

    Sada, as far as your question that what wrong judiciary has done is concerned, the “rule of law” fever spread only few days ago. Otherwise, its the lawyers who will tell you how to twist law in your favor even in petty cases. Its their profession to twist the law. You yourself said people were missing, families went to SC and they got the orders of release. Unjust things happen, courts give relief, whats is the problem here. People were held in Guntanamo bay without prosecution, which court took suo moto? Who ask Bush to step down?

    Anyway, do you think if Musharraf leave the office of army and president, the new parliament will survive its tenure? Will the next government, whoever makes it will be pious? DO you think next opposition will let the government work?

  96. sada says:
    November 7th, 2007 3:31 am

    Is it an argument that there is a possibility of some problems after Mushrraf so he should let to do all atrocities which he is right now doing against the whole civil society, judiciary and media in Pakistan? He is doing all this just for personal survival and his previous record is evident in that case. As far lawyers and their profession is concerned, I know one thing this is what lawyers do all over the world and system should work largely well. No one expect absolute correctness from democracy and its institutions. But, in Pakistan Mushrraf regime has crossed all limitations and then civil society stood up against him. You have rightly mentioned that what extra ordinary courts have done other than despenssing justice as it is the constitutional duty imposed upon judiciary. I agree absolutely but here comes Mushrraf with objection that look do what i say and refrain from any thing what i dont like! In case of Guntanamo bay, US courts should have taken steps and they are gradually moving towards that as Pakistani court have done it gradually and they were not just against the Mushrraf from the outset. We all know that so many sad and unjust things are going around all over the world but it should not serve as an argument to perpetuate self-serving regimes in our countries. If we cannot make big differences then we should do our best to bring about small chyanges which are within our reach. If our hands cannot reach to Bush, should we just sit down pwersuming that we cannot even challenge Mush where our hands can reach and the change can help few people!

  97. Sohail Agha says:
    November 7th, 2007 3:47 am

    Nasim Zehra in The News

    http://thenews.com.pk/daily_detail.asp?id=79232

    ”….What next? The only way forward towards a democratic, secure and stable Pakistan is to adopt the following seven steps immediately: 1. Immediate restoration of the Constitution. 2. Immediate reinstatement of all the judges of the Supreme Court and High Court judges. 3. Reopening of all independent TV channels. 4. Dissolution of all the assemblies as per schedule in November and setting up of a credible non-controversial interim government. 5. A general amnesty and return of all political leaders including Baloch leaders to Pakistan. 6. Holding of an All-Parties Conference with all mainstream political leaders on a two-point agenda; to agree on a code of conduct to hold fair and free and to agree on a political cum security strategy to end growing internal violence and terrorism. 7. Holding of general elections no later than February 2007. ”

  98. Sohail Agha says:
    November 7th, 2007 3:53 am

    Shireen M Mazari in The News

    http://thenews.com.pk/daily_detail.asp?id=79228

    ”….It is interesting to note that in terms of Pakistan the US has always praised its leaders with whom it evolved beneficial equations rather than the nation as a whole. Saddam was seen as a dangerous “tyrant” but it is Pakistan as a whole that is seen as “dangerous” or being overwhelmed by extremists. Interestingly, the US Centcom chief visited Pakistan a day before the declaration of ‘emergency’ and a few days earlier the Jordanian king had also visited. Was support for US policy on Iran an issue for discussion?…”

  99. Mahmood says:
    November 7th, 2007 4:03 am

    This is what I am saying Sada, we go to such extremes when opposing someone that we fail to see the reality. Wasn’t it Mussharraf who opened the media up when he was chief executive. The country where minister were more unreachable than kings were questioned and even rediculed by common people. Musharraf gave the system of local government democracy that gave the chance to a common man to become part of the government and change things in his or her area, and lot of them did made the change. Goto Karachi, the place where one road completion use to be the achievement of goverment now has a signal less corridor from Gulshan to defense. So many parks have come up. What was the Stock Exchange in 90′s and what it is now. There is new police in Lahore who got excellent record for behaviour. So many new universities were sanctioned, banking sector got a boom. You can find many positives only if you want to. IMHO, you cant stick “evil” on this goverment.

    I was in Pakistan last Eid, a traffic police guy was trying to manage the traffic leaving his children on Eid day. Not a singal person was listening to him. What rule of law are we asking for when we ourself break law whenever we get the chance.

    I am not trying to prove wrong right. the wrong is wrong, but you can’t say right wrong also. Pakistan has a political situation, politicians should handle it wisely. If they want to remove Musharraf, they should remove him by politics, not creating a friction. That will only prolong his stay.

  100. Ahsan says:
    November 7th, 2007 4:25 am

    “Now, there is a real possibility that the army will be forced to fire upon its own citizens, and not just in South Waziristan, but in Lahore and Karachi.”

    A Pakistani soldier is a very well disciplined soldier. He will not hesitate to shoot his own father if his commander asks him to do.

    Are the citizens of Lahore and Karachi different than those in Waziristan and Queta? In the name of “Democracy” all citizens of Pakistan will get the treatment.

    Only a national army does not fire on its own citizen. A national army is an army which belongs to the nation. In Pakistan it is opposite; here NATION belongs to ARMY!

  101. KhAn says:
    November 7th, 2007 4:26 am

    It’s amazing how we keep blaming army chief and USA for every wrong, and never discuss those who facilitate them, i think these army dictators have been used by people “in” or “outside” the country for their own purposes, all of these dictators seems to be sincere at some times, from Ayub to Musharaf, there were some hints of honesty when they first addressed the nation, i personally feel its their teams who manipulate their powers, use it for their own beniffit and in the end let them down, everybody talks of democracy, whether there’s musharaf or no musharaf, all we have got is nawaz sharif, benazir bhuto, altaf hussain, pervez elahi, fazl ur rahman, etc. Each of them have helped some dictator at some time or other, they are all buggers.

  102. Kruman says:
    November 7th, 2007 4:26 am

    BREAKING NEWS:
    Huge rally in Islamabad dominated by students:
    http://free-pakistan.blogspot.com/2007/11/huge-rally-in-islamabad-dominated-by.html

  103. Jamshed Nazar says:
    November 7th, 2007 4:49 am

    Most people are tired of the political leadership of BB / NS

    Why is it that all these dissatisfied people do not make new political parties or support alternate leaderships?

    I fail to understand why Aitzaaz Ahsan continues to support PPP and Benazir and why Imran Khan is not able to broaden the base of his political party?

    All those making load comments of Musharraf bashing – have you taken part in elections? have you worked with a political party ? have you supported any alternate leaders?

    By not participating in the politcal process, and sitting around commenting on the players, all these comments look quite silly.

    I think overseas Pakistanis should be able to cast their votes via embassies. Also, whoever has the spark of patriotism / nationalism / Musharraf bashing etc, please go do something – not sit around and exchange views.

    The crowds sitting around in a stadium over a game do not count. They can clap and they can boo and they can cheer. But they cannot change the game.
    Go be a player guys , and if you want to be a cheering crowd, then go watch a cricket match or something better.

    I for one support Tehkrik i Insaaf. and i will support another party in field if it takes a better postion than Imran.

    br,
    jnzi

  104. Abid says:
    November 7th, 2007 5:22 am

    Some well intention folks are STILL trying to figure out whether the

  105. KhAn says:
    November 7th, 2007 5:29 am

    It’s not that easy to form a political party, even if there was one, u still won’t be able to beat the “wadehras” and “chohdaries” in their hometowns, even in big cities many ppl still blindedly follow nawaz and bibi, it’s just younger generation, which is sick of these old faces.
    And Tehreek-e-Insaf is not even a party and it will never be one, i dun rate imran very high either, i have never saw anyone else representing this party at any forum and he talks of democracy, he will never allow any strong personality in his own party. Even the media persons are biased, i feel so sick when i think of how helpless are we.

  106. Adam Insaan says:
    November 7th, 2007 5:46 am

    Are we , the Pakistanii

  107. Qandeel says:
    November 7th, 2007 5:47 am

    Despair can easily take you down the path of either passivity or mindless violence. Historically, poetry, verses etc have helped raise consciousness and shake people awake from inertia. Especially when outright protest was considered perilous. I think its a pity that we don’t have more contemporary political poets (do we?) in Pakistan.

    To quote a quote from an article in The Nation today, which I think is apt and should encourage us more to take action:

    First they came for the Socialists, and I did not speak out- because I was not a Socialist.
    Then they came for the Trade Unionists, and I did not speak out- because I was not a Trade Unionist.
    Then they came for the Jews, and I did not speak out- because I was not a Jew.
    Then they came for me – and there was no one left to speak for me. – Pastor Martin Niem

  108. MQ says:
    November 7th, 2007 6:02 am

    Giving vent to your anger and your feelings on this blog is OK. It may help influence opinions. But for those living in the US or Canada and who believe the Martial Law in Pakistan is unacceptable and must go, it is important to speak up and organize protests wherever you are — on the campuses, at public places, in front of the embassies and consulates. Also, write to your congressmen, senators, and the leading newspapers.

  109. Adam Insaan says:
    November 7th, 2007 6:15 am

    Qandeel@

    So true You are, and the words You have put forth are imperatively highlightening the situation we are in !

    As S

  110. Yasir Mehmood says:
    November 7th, 2007 6:21 am

    Hey higlight the fact that musharaf has added judges in his newly crafted Supreme court who gave the decision on the red mosque issue but still accusing the ex supreme court.I think he did this for western sympathy

  111. KhAn says:
    November 7th, 2007 6:34 am

    Lal masjid and all other extremist have done nothing but facilitate US or Musharaf cause, whenever bush popularity graph is going down, usama’s video came for rescue, similarly the suicide attacks came to help musharaf, it’s funny when you say that these extremist groups are anti-us or anti-musharaf, they actually are the biggest supporter, first killing innocent people of their own country and then having US attack “them” , killing again the innocent civilians. I wonder what would US have done without usama or Al-qaida, or musharaf without these recent suicide bombers.

  112. Ahmad R. Shahid says:
    November 7th, 2007 8:32 am

    <p>It is astonishing to find many people still support Musharraf. They think an individual is more important than the country. What skewed thinking. If according to the law and the constitution, NS or BB win the elections. Let them rule. If we are decent and we don’t like them we should just vote against them rather than supporting over them, the likes of Mush.</p>
    <p>As for another stupid logic that is mostly put forth by the “overseas” variety of Pakistanis, that most Pakistanis are illiterate. Firstly, who keeps them illiterate? Definitely the huge defence budget leaves very little for other purposes. Secondly, how many people were literate in 1776 in the USA? Or 1789 in France, when the French revolution took place? But no one there, arguably the most educated lots in the world, gives the same argument that passing of the American Constitution in 1776 or the French Revolution in 1789 were wrong just because many people were illiterate there. So get over this stupid argument.</p>

  113. Arslan Haider says:
    November 7th, 2007 9:48 am

    I read some interesting arguments about the “Rule of Law”. The most of arguments seems like in the favor of “Rule of Lawyer” not Law.
    I am no insider to claim that who is wrong and who is right, but indeed I have seen enough to establish that even judiciary with all it’s plethora of suomoto was acting in it’s own interest, not to give relief to a common person.
    I believe every now and then just for the heck of change we like to ridicule who ever is running the country. I am in no way saying that Musharaff is doing right. He has done horrible thing to impose the emergency, but what can we do now? Should we put the whole country in flame as a protest? Should we make mockery of ourselves by letting the other countries interfere? I believe, we should prove by our actions that the majority of Pakistanis do not favor Musharaff actions by voting against his choice of leadership. The resentment can be shown more peacefully then by setting the public properties on fire. We need to remember this BB/NS are no better either. They are equally tyrant as well, they have done horrible things against this judiciary , which is now the “flavor of the month”. They are using the judiciary to gain their own political mileages. These political leaders ask for democracy, but how many times they have held elections in their own parties? We need to change the political atmosphere first by getting rid of the most popular brass BB/NS/Chaudries and other occupying forces on the political atmosphere.
    On a separate note, giving rights to expatriate Pakistanis vote through their embassies will be an excellent step.

  114. Ahmad R. Shahid says:
    November 7th, 2007 9:57 am

    How come the judiciary was acting in its own interest if it was following the constitution? The argument just beats me.

  115. Arslan Haider says:
    November 7th, 2007 10:04 am

    @ Ahmad Shahid
    The interest was proxy support for political parties. If you have bench who have heard all the arguments on case. Why not deliver the result. Let it be whatever it is. I would have love to see the decision against the Musharaff. Why holding the result so that specific parties can use it as a tool to negotiate the power sharing or future elections in their best interest.

  116. Ahmad R. Shahid says:
    November 7th, 2007 10:06 am

    Pakistan ultimately may turn out to be like Zimbabwe, where one man’s, Robert Mugabe, lust for power has put the country on the path to destruction. Freed in 1980 from the clutches of colonialism, Zimbabwe was put on the path of soveireignity (if i spell it right:)), freedom and development by the then guerilla leader, Robert Mugabe. Yet over the last 27 years he has turned from a freedom fighter and father of the nation to one of the worst dictators on the earth. Thanks to his lust for power Zimbabwe is in dire shape now. With inflation running as high as 7,000% per annum, Zimbabweans are the ones to suffer the most. 3 million Zimbabweans have already crossed the border, most notably into South Africa. But with clinging to power of Mugabe, things are set to get worse.

    Ring a bell? Musharraf doesn’t compare well with Mugabe, since he is neither a freedom fighter and nor the father of the nation. But his lust for power is equally bad or even worse. Worse still he is the head of a nation of 160 million, and not a measly 12 million. The process of destruction has already started and if he still tries to cling on to power, as Mugabe has, the results could be devastating for Pakistan. Inflation rate could get very high ultimately, since such regimes are poor on policies, and Pakistanis might start fleeing to the neighboring countries, a nightmare scenario for them.

  117. Ahmad R. Shahid says:
    November 7th, 2007 10:08 am

    The courts always come up with short orders and the detailed order is released afterwards. That is a Pakistani tradition, if not followed by the rest of the courts. And which particular case are you talking about?

  118. Ahmad R. Shahid says:
    November 7th, 2007 10:28 am

    Seconding Arslan Haider I would request that the voting right should be given even to the non-Pakistanis as well. In this globalized world every one has stakes in every other country.

  119. Ahmad R. Shahid says:
    November 7th, 2007 10:29 am

    On the Go Petition website:

    http://www.gopetition.com/petitions/we-oppose-emergency-in-pakistan/signatures.html

    One can see even the non-Pakistanis voting for the petition. That is another proof of this globalized reality.

  120. Arslan Haider says:
    November 7th, 2007 10:30 am

    The case which bars the official notification of presidential election. ( I am aware those elections were farce). It was widely expected the judgment will be against the Musharaff. Why not deliver it? Why holding it, so that BB can negotiate the NRO in her favor.
    Justice Iftikar might be a good man, but he was playing politics from an influential post. He should have deliver the verdict rather then getting involve in facilitating the politicians.

  121. Ahmad R. Shahid says:
    November 7th, 2007 10:33 am

    Arslan Haider sahab:

    I think the reason the verdict had not been given so far was that certain lawyers still wanted to argue. The court can’t give a verdict without listening to all the views, can it or should it?

  122. Ahmad R. Shahid says:
    November 7th, 2007 10:34 am

    Also Arslan Haider sahab, Justice Iftikhar was not even part of the bench hearing the case.

    Also when we accuse of judiciary playing politics, which in my view it was not, we simply forget about the Generals doing all the dirty politics.

  123. Arslan Haider says:
    November 7th, 2007 10:35 am

    Ahmad

    Very interesting!!!! I agree globalization is inevitable.
    Why not ask US and India or any other country let us vote on their internal matter. I doubt you will get favorable answer, yet you want other countries to vote on our matters. Are we really that incapable that we can not decide on our own matters?
    US is not willing to give voting rights to even those people who reside in this country unless they are citizen.

  124. Ahmad R. Shahid says:
    November 7th, 2007 10:38 am

    Arslan Haider sahab:

    Without relying on rhetoric to get my point through, I will say that I am not the first one to have argued such. The first time it was argued was during the last Presidential elections in none other than USA. There were articles in I think Time, Newsweek and Economist. And it was argued then that since the US elections affect the whole world, the whole world should be allowed to vote in them. I am just extending the argument. You may or may not agree with that.

  125. Arslan Haider says:
    November 7th, 2007 10:44 am

    I agree if all the arguments were not heard then they had the full rights to delay the verdict. My only arguments is that, it was an important decision, by just delivering it, this situation could have been defused or avoided.
    The 10 day leave for wedding ceremony (daughter of one judge), would have put the date beyond the official date when he was suppose to shed the uniform. This was critical in all parties views

  126. Ahmad R. Shahid says:
    November 7th, 2007 10:47 am

    Well I think the judiciary is composed of humans. Also courts had been hearing such cases of “immense importance” for far too long. A judge’s daughter couldn’t wait for ever, could she? Its a strange logic so I won’t divulge any further on that. I think you just want to prove that the court was playing politics, and finding arguments to prove that. No pun intended and no offence!

  127. Abid says:
    November 7th, 2007 11:19 am

    Defenders of the status quo argue that since we can

  128. Ahmad R. Shahid says:
    November 7th, 2007 11:23 am

    Abid sahab:

    I think the fight needs to be fought at all the fronts. It has always been like that in history. Some will write poetry, some will come out on the streets, some will spread the message by word of mouth and so on and so forth.

  129. Tahir says:
    November 7th, 2007 11:45 am

    In response to Ahsan’s following comment:

    >A Pakistani soldier is a very well disciplined soldier. He will not >hesitate to shoot his own father if his commander asks him to do.

    No he won’t, and in his place would you? What’s more, his commanding officers might not want to issue such orders. Read up on the brigade commanders and other officers who resigned rather than issue orders to open fire on the citizens of Lahore in 1977.

    The only peaceful way for this country to be rid of the parasite of Musharraf is for the army to realize that at this time he has become an unacceptably large liability for them.

  130. Ahmad R. Shahid says:
    November 7th, 2007 11:49 am

    It would only work if Asfhaq Kiani realizes that and asks Musharraf to leave. But then we might be in for another Marshal Law, another “seven point agenda”, another “Meray Aziz Ham Watanou” and what not.

  131. Abid says:
    November 7th, 2007 11:51 am

    Ahmad sahab: There is no disagreement on the point that the

  132. Ahmad R. Shahid says:
    November 7th, 2007 11:59 am

    Fully agree with you Abid sahab.

  133. Farhan Syed says:
    November 7th, 2007 2:39 pm

    Adil,

    I have seen many videos, political, motivational, all sorts, but your choice of this video and Faiz, is just amazing. At times, we need reminders of what we have been through.

    Keep up the good work.

    Farhan Syed
    London

  134. maniza says:
    November 7th, 2007 5:31 pm

    Today In the market place, though chained and fettered walk!

    The misty eye, the fiery spirit , not enough
    The allegations of intense love, not enough

    Today in the market place, chained and fettered walk !
    Walk waving your arms– dance in ecstasy, walk!
    Walk to protest in sorrow, walk with blood splattered clothes, walk!
    Destiny awaits you, walk!

    The masters too, the masses too.
    The arrow of accusations too, the stones of abuse too,

    The unhappy daybreak too, the failed day too.
    Who else is their companion other then us?

    In the city of the beloved who is defiant?
    Who is worthy of the executioner’s hand?
    Take courage, wounded ones, walk!
    Let us once again go to be murdered–friends, walk!

    Aaj Baazar Mein pa bajaulan chalo

    Chasme naam jane shorida kafi nahin
    Tuhmat e ishq e poshida kafi nahin

    Aaj bazaar mein pa bajaulan chalo
    Dast afashan chalo mast or raqsan chalo
    Khak bar sar chalo khun ba daman chalo
    Rah takta hai sab shahr e janan chalo

    Hakim e shahr bhi majma e am bhi
    Tir e ilzam bhi sange dushnam bhi

    Sobho nashad bhi roz e nakam bhi
    Inka dam saz apne siwa kaun hai

    Shahr e janan mein ab ba safa kaun hai
    Dast e qatil ke shayan raha kaun hai.
    Rakht e dil bandh lo, dil fagaro chalo
    Phir hamin qatl hoaen yaro chalo.

    Translated by Narjis and Maniza Naqvi

  135. KhAn says:
    November 8th, 2007 12:58 am

    Yes we can’t fight though we are ready to fight, but we need some sincere leadership which i m afraid is not available, that’s the reality.

    “Today in the market place, chained and fettered walk ” lolz , ok, i will, a whole crowd will join with flags of PPP, PML (N), MMA, shouting “go musharaf go”, baton-charge, tear gas, media, agitation increases, musharaf have to leave, fair elections held, PPP or PML wins (forget about ppl of larkana choosing other then benazir or someone beating chaudary in gujrat or sheikh rashid being challenged in his union etc), Benazir, Nawaz, etc for prime minister, bla bla bla.
    Welll i better not waste my time in this “chained and fettered walk” , Sorry :(

  136. November 10th, 2007 10:14 am

    emergences from emergency:

    The Quaid-i-Azam Mohammad Ali Jinnah Said,

    “never look the people but principle”… unfortunately our rulers do not know any principle the only principle they know is “sab se pehle pakistan” a phrase which they can not justify for themselves.. and we all know that how brutally the defamed our judges who are most respective and honourable.. who are already very few in number in our country.. socrates said 2500 years ago “we have to study the state of mind of a man because man is very important”. this principle is considered as the fundamental of the principle of “rule of law” but unfortunately we have lost the importance of man in our eyes so judges is a thing of far.. if an agreived person does not get justice in our country we consider it as not a big issue but the tragedy is that the controversial suicidal attacks, artificial unstability of law & order, suspension of constitution are also no more “a big issue” for us.. we have to stand but everybody knows and wants to be stood up against this non-sense of government but we are waiting for others to take first step and same is what everbody else waiting for… come on people this is our land this is our country this is our pakistan…. ” sab se pehle pakistan hai toh ab sab se pehle main kiun nahin”…

    our country need us. our country need us to come forward. please come forward and restore the importance of “a man” in pakistan.

  137. Rafay Kashmiri says:
    November 12th, 2007 2:52 pm

    BB, Asma Jehangir, & colonial leftists,

    Congratulations, The master Raj Bahadur has
    decided to expel Pakistan from Raj aur Raj ki
    auladon chor’on ka Commonwealth if….. u know !!

    Have envy for a Samba !!

    felicidadeeeeeeeeeee

  138. Rafay Kashmiri says:
    November 12th, 2007 5:42 pm

    Are we still walking “Pa bajolan” in the Bazar ??

  139. Ismail says:
    November 16th, 2007 4:50 am

    Very moving poem and very timely. I also loved these words in the post: “We love Pakistan not because everything is right in it. But despite that which is clearly not right. And with a commitment to make right that which has gone astray.” Yes, that is our committment too.

  140. Expat Engineer says:
    November 18th, 2007 6:11 am

    people have always held his own political and human rights views – that is their right and no one can denounce that. Also, they are not forcing these views on any one – only venting out the same in a forum where people may agree or disagree with them. As for me, I see more pros and less cons in the present set-up.

    The successive governments that our generation has experienced comprise of zia, junejo, bb, ns, bb, ns and musharraf. Of these, zia’s regime has always been termed as the dark period starting from coup against and hanging of bhutto – and if history is written rightly – that action was highly undesirable and fully deplorable. The successive governments, except junejo perhaps, were dismissed quite unceremoniously on (proven) charges of CORRUPTION – but there was no hue and cry from the human right activists and all those who are on streets now – presumably because a civil president (aka ishaq, laghari) has more ‘civil’ right to throw off an elected government than when the same crime is committed by a man in uniform – as in 1999. And I fully support the people who are of the view that he should not have done this – he should let have his PIA commercial plane, full of civilains, crashed somewhere off the Pak soil or should have landed in India as the mid-air dismissed Chief of Army Staff of Pakistan Armed Forces – a highly intelligent move mastered by the then PM. Please note that all this has been repeatedly mentioned in both electronic/print media and has been published in his official biography – and has never been denied by our elected PM or challenged in any national/intl court of law as an attempt to defame him – proof enough for intelligent people to accept that this, indeed, is the whole truth.

    Again, coming back to comparison with those governments – those were dismissed on charges of corruption – the rulers, sorry, the elected popular rulers and the champions of civil rights (since Asma Jahangir and IA Rehman took to streets against those governments much less than now – that seems to be the only gauge available to most of the people) making their fortunes in English Palaces, through 10% commissions on high fund deals, through steel mills import rules, through swiss bank accounts, through yellow cab and Green Pakistan (etc.) schemes … the list is long and dirty. Much to the dismay of the civil rights champions and media hawks of Pakistan, the present regime failed to match their predecessors in the corruption race – am trying very, very hard to find something against musharraf that added to his personal assets and wealth, apart from the perks and benefits granted to him by army, huge and thorn for the same group of people mentioned above, but again unfortunately granted to him by the laws not set by him and are much less than the value of money held in a swiss account or the real estate value of Surrey Palace. At the same time, I am trying equally hard to find anything financial irregularity recorded against his huge cabinet – the result is the same. And when there indeed were some things, like the much touted Steel Mills case, the judicary stepped in and stopped that deal – and the government honored the verdict. So, for me at least, Musharraf is a clear loser in terms of high corruption standards set by previous rulers – and, to quote the idiot box, biggest loser jeetay ga.

    Coming to judiciary – what has been done to them is definitely wrong – but I was really wondering why it was done to them??? When CJ was suspended in March, it was on charges of corruption, nepotism and misuse of authority. When he was reinstated by his colleagues in July – the only thing that was cancelled/overruled was the way of his dismissal. That was not the reference against him; the reference was on appointment of his son to an elevated post using his influence, the misuse of government resources (helicopter etc.), the wrong claims in medical and transport bills etc. I am still to hear any SC ruling clearing the honorable (ex) CJ of Pakistan of those allegations filed against him by the government. And when the gentleman was reinstated, his comments became more masala for newspapers’ front pages than any tinsel town news. I suppose his famous comment to Chairman PIA (one of the highest civil positions in Pakistan) that went something like, ‘shakal se to aap parhey likhe aadmi lagte hain (you look like an educated man apparently)’, and many more similar comments to may other senior civil servants, made headlines but were conveniently ignored by the civil rights activists and lawyers and political parties and media hawks – probably because the civil CJP has the right to utter these things; a Martial Law Administrator should not dare say such rubbish. The chapter, unfortunately, does not finish here – the reinstated CJP and the SC suddenly woke from a long slumber and started taking suo moto notices of each and everything that was happening in Pakistan. There is no objection on why they started late – there is always a first time – but there is every reason to say that they were treading on both sides of the fine lines dividing judiciary, government and lawmakers. For any average sensible man, the language and actions of Mr. Chaudary since his reinstatement were clear indi cators that the gentleman has lost his impartiality and is no longer unbiased – the basic quality desirable in judiciary. He and his fellow judges can be made heroes and icons on their denial of oath under PCO – but personally, and I repeat personally, I believe that it would have been much better if they had taken the oaths and then took decisions on the cases pending in their courts as per law – it would have served the nation, if not them, muchbetter.

    If memory serves us right, we may remember the reaction of the same lawyers outside Supreme Court against the same judges when the decision of allowing General Musharraf to contest the presidential election went against them and their candidate Mr. Wajih. There were demonstrations, slogan chanting, setting ablaze the court verdict, denouncing the SC itself – Namanzoor, Namanzoor, Yeh Faisla Namanzoor / Shame, Shame etc. – were some of the slogans I remember now. Again, the self-appointed civil rights champions and the ever-efficient media chose to look the other way when the SC authority was challenged

  141. Rafay Kashmiri says:
    November 18th, 2007 10:44 am

    @The commentators,

    My first Nazm ” Ye log” disappeared, alas I did’nt keep a
    copy, this is my second, hopes for Democracy !!

    Policy Dehrion ki ye hay, keh jhoot Phaiyla’ain
    Sirf Zubani batla’in, sirf Natak hi racha’ain

    Hath mein gar ajaiy inn kay iqtidar,
    bheint Kazibon par sachai ki charhadain

    Ikhtilaf kar nehein sakta koi inn say
    kehein wo app ko Suli pay ne charhadain

    Seh nehein saktay, ye sachai ki Zuba’n
    kisi aur say Zuba’n, app ki ne katwadain

    Syasat Pesha hay inka, ye kartay hein shikar
    Kehein such bolnay walon ko, ye ne marwadain

    Ghareebo’n kay bantay hein, ye Thekedar sabhi
    Josh hi mein kehein Ghareebo’n ko ne marwadain

    Nazariate ki jang ho, ya daulat ki
    Insaniat ko ye kehein ne marwadain

  142. Saman Mohsin says:
    November 21st, 2007 11:12 pm

    These days I am shying away from calling my self Pakistani. The sort of news that come across through news paper are not only depressing but also embarassing to own as a nation. I totally agree with the poem of Rafay Kashmiri this is the sort of Badmashi our forces are involved in these days. I believe illiteracy is the cause of all this, alas we are still no where near to be called a developing nation.

  143. Daktar says:
    November 22nd, 2007 12:10 pm

    Saman
    This is not the time to despair, this is time to be proud of Pakistan. I am very proud of the Pakistanis who keep demonstrating, writing against injustice, speaking out despite all the beatings and jailings and the extreme measures this givernment is taking. In the past in Pakistan and even now in many places, people just sulk and go quiet at much less, but in Pakistan the students, the journalists and the lawyers keep protesting despite the extreme injustice and hurt to them. This is something to be proud of, not to dispair. I remain proud to be a Pakistani more than ever. I am not proud of the generals but very proud of ordinary Pakistanis.

  144. Sohail Agha says:
    November 22nd, 2007 12:12 pm

    @Daktar

    I totally agree…

  145. Rafay Kashmiri says:
    December 4th, 2007 7:55 am

    @Expat Engineer,
    your very long but comprehensive post is not to avoid,

    parh chuknay kay baad post app ki
    Ji chahta hay kay likhen marsia aik
    Kia khabar ro parai’n Diwarayn bhi
    Roaiy ga kiun na kisi ka dil abb aik

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