Protest is a right…. but NOT like this

Posted on December 7, 2007
Filed Under >Owais Mughal, Photo of the Day
117 Comments
Total Views: 32850

Share

Owais Mughal

This photo is from today’s Dawn. It shows protesting lawyers damaging public property in Multan.

The ability to protest against that which they consider unjust is everybody’s right. But there is a fine line between peaceful protest and anarchy. Damaging property is definitely wrong and serves no one’s interest. It certainly does not serve the interest of the lawyers movement for democracy.

Violence is clearly wrong. It becomes no less or no more wrong when it is committed by protesting lawyers than when it is done by government against the same protesting lawyers. Just as we have called out against violence committed against protesters by government agencies, we must also call out aginst violence committed by them.

Anger is neither a strategy nor an excuse. The principle is a clear one: Wrong is wrong, no matter who does it and no matter why.

117 Comments on “Protest is a right…. but NOT like this”

  1. Kruman says:
    December 7th, 2007 10:27 pm

    It is not the same. Musharraf was the head of a half million army, with the entire state apparatus on his side when he beat the lawyers black and blue. A strong person in position of power needs to have a big heart and he should let people vent their feelings by shouting slogans against him.

    I regret the violence in Multan, but these were unarmed people who were going to get beaten like crap anyways. They though what the heck, let’s give the police a taste of their medicine ( this is a legacy of Musharraf’s rule). You can’t just blame the symtom here, you need to look at the root cause of this behaviour.

    Again, while the violence is regrettable, the violence unleashed upon lawyers and journalists by Musharraf’s gestapo was far worse and brutal. Even in this case (Multan) I blame police more than lawyers. Police had no business entering the district bar and court premises. They should’ve stayed out and let the lawyers protest peacefully.

  2. SUhail says:
    December 7th, 2007 10:27 pm

    And this is what we called

  3. Azmat says:
    December 7th, 2007 10:33 pm

    The behavior of these few lawyers and of those who support their violence will defeat the real power and purpose of the lawyers movement. This movement is important because it has been peaceful even in the face of violence by government. We must not respond to violence by violence, otherwise we will become no better than the police thugs. Reports suggest that the police had started the violence, but as you say that is no excuse. We must be better than them. We must not respond to police violence by violence. Till now the lawyers have had the moral high ground because they have restrained themselves against police high handedness. They must remain the same. What we see here is clearly wrong but let us also say that as your past posts show the violence till now has come nearly always by the state and not by the lawyers.

  4. RH Shimatoree says:
    December 7th, 2007 10:51 pm

    The dynamics of an impending revolution are in place.
    Soon the Police will not beat the protestors but join them, and they shall be followed by the soldiers who do not wish to fight and kill their own people . And to know that Musharraf and Benazir and other Politicians are missing as to what is really going on can only be called pathetic . The anger level is very high and once the frustration reaches it’s peak- anything is possible. Rather than passing judgements- the comment writers should provide analysis from their point of view. It means nothing if someone says SHAME or raises the issue of Pakistan’s reputation in the world. What matters is the dynamics of the situation and the reactions of those that might be able to modify the situation.

  5. temporal says:
    December 7th, 2007 11:19 pm

    i wrote about this too today

    think!

    lawyers abandoning the law!

    as the english say, “pity”!

  6. PurePakistani says:
    December 7th, 2007 11:21 pm

    This one incident or a few like this do not represent the peaceful movement of Pakistani lawyers. Is it not true that they have savagely been beaten, humiliated and jailed since the uprising. If emotions occasionally overflow, it is natural . After all lawyers are human too. Instead of dedicating an entire post to it, ATP should have presented it in the right context.

  7. PurePakistani says:
    December 7th, 2007 11:55 pm

    I would like to add that the young lawyer in the picture is not breaking some one’s bones or cracking skulls. He is simply attacking a symbol of repression.

  8. Daktar says:
    December 8th, 2007 12:11 am

    I do not understand what people mean by things like “lawyers are human too.” By saying this are you saying that violence is justified because it is human. This is a dangerous argument. If you justify violence by these lawyers, no matter what reason, then logically someone could justify the much greater violence by the state and the police. How can their violence by wrong and our violence right? Since the state always has a great capacity for violence than citizens (except, maybe, in case of terrorist activity) this is a very dangerous argument. If we are against the violence by the state then we must also be against violence in retaliation. Otherwise as someone said we lose moral high ground. It would be wrong, for example, to justify the violence by a policeman on the ground that this was just the human reaction of someone who got tired of people hurling abuse and slogans and taunts at them. Similarly, it is wrong to justify this violence as human. I hope we are better humans than this.

    It is right that the lawyers movement has been mostly peaceful and has held the high moral position while state violence has been constant and continuous. But this does not justify the violence by the downtrodden.It is only a reminder that we must not allow the state, through its violence, to fall to their own level and repeat the same brutality that we have been objecting against.

    I am glad that ATP has highlighted this. After having written so often about the state’s violence it would have been hypocritical and one-sided to have ignored this. This violence does not in any way undermine the righteousness of the lawyers movement. It is only a reminder to all of us that we must not let the brutality of the state to force us to stoop to their level. We must remain above that and better than that.

  9. Qureshi says:
    December 8th, 2007 12:30 am

    Well said Daktar.
    Those of us who are against violence by state should be against all violence. This was a mistake by a few young lawyers in their passion. Protestors should resist this in the future and make sure their protests are peaceful. Otherwise we will only give amunition to Mush supporters to justify their own violence.

  10. SH Kavi says:
    December 8th, 2007 12:37 am

    To me, this is an issue of moral clarity about violence that, it is wrong no matter who does it. Two wrongs don

  11. Aadil says:
    December 8th, 2007 1:59 am

    Though the picture can’t describe the context around it, yet it is enough to dent the overall peacefull movement of the lawyers fraternity for the restoration of the rule of law in the country. It is also a manifestation of our increasing inclination towards violent activities for getting the things done. This inclination might be one of the repurcussions of a long millitiary hold over the affairs of the state. With a crippled democracy one cannot expect democratic values like patience and consideration for the feelings of others, to flourish. All in all the picture above is enough to malign the very cause of peaceful activism going around the country and project Pakistan with another negative feature.

  12. whole LOTA love says:
    December 8th, 2007 2:11 am

    this picture further detoriated the image of Pakistan. Jinnah himself was a lawyer he never appreciated any thing against the law.

    its simply scandalous behaviour.

  13. Not a LOTA says:
    December 8th, 2007 2:20 am

    LOTA is exactly right. This picture is one more way in which Musharraf is messing with the image of Pakistan. Because of his brutality and human right abuses he has forced the lawyers to take such extreme measures. I wish they had not but because of repeated abuses and brutality by Musharraf and his goons (Thank you ATP for the links you have to the earlier posts with pictures of Musharraf’s police brutality) the patience of the lawyers ran out here.

    I will urge all protesters to follow the advice of others on this board and not fall as low as Musharraf, his army and their goons. Democracy zindabad.

  14. Tanweer Amjad says:
    December 8th, 2007 2:23 am

    Ground realities and the background are totlally ignored while writing these articles. Deceiving yourself by saying peaceful protests bring about revolutions is just a delaying tactic. Pakistan is all together different from western countries. I wish if someone had been among them for the last few weeks. The way the lawyers been arrested and tortured in jails was meant for no other purpose than to frighten the fighting lawyers. The miseries and tortures felt by the persons and their families is natural to create an intolerant attitude. I just can say that this (whether right or wrong) is the answer to the attroicites on the humans for the last few weeks.
    Again clear enough from this picture, that army and police are good for our own people and real weak people respectively.

  15. Daktar says:
    December 8th, 2007 2:28 am

    Tanweer, isn’t GROUND REALITIES the code word that Gen. Musharraf has been using to justify his own brutality and violence against the lawyers recently?

  16. Tanweer Amjad says:
    December 8th, 2007 2:28 am

    I think west doesn’t bother for any good in Pakistan. So I don’t think the reflected image from this picture could be that bad to be discussed that much. I think the picture of torture of women during protest by Imran Khan’s sister in Lahore and a school girl in Islamabad was a million times more pronounced in deteriorating the image of Pakistan. And against that the picture in questio is far less significant.

  17. Daktar says:
    December 8th, 2007 2:33 am

    Maybe if we all worried a little less about the image of Pakistan and more about its reality we end up doing more good to Pakistan.

  18. Aadil says:
    December 8th, 2007 2:49 am

    You are absolutely right Daktar! but you know what, one does get hurt when one’s lover, in this case Pakistan is being reflected with a picture so bad. It is not that we are against projecting realities but who knows, what an epic is behind the picture.

  19. Asif says:
    December 8th, 2007 4:12 am

    just a word here… we need some serious ‘attitude’ education plus etiquettes in a state of mental depression and anger.

  20. December 8th, 2007 4:47 am

    Look at the moral deparavity or should I say intellectual backruptcy of the people who would like to show this picture prominently on the first page of this blog and then others posting remarks about how much they condemn this “Brutal” , “Wrongful” , “Illegal” and “Voilent” act.
    Let us be honest , and use the terms in their right context. This is a movement against the most ruthless dictator of 21st century, the gustapo force of this mad dictator is using all “VIOLENT” means to suppress the vioce of innocent and unarmed people who come on street to peacefully protest. A human being has a limited capacity of enduring the violence specially if they are in a group and have means to respond back. Remember these people in black coats are not robots who come on street and against the “BRUTAL” use of force they would just endure it.
    Owais Mughal said

    Wrong is wrong, no matter who does it and no matter why.

    No wrong is not an absolute term Mr. Owais , killing a person is “Wrong” , but killing a person in your defence is always “Right” and has been recognised as the right of a person to use in danger.
    Those who always like to bring “the image of Pakistan” being affected by this. It is a matter of shame that people are not ashamed of that a ruthless dictator in 21st century dismissed the whole superior judiciary in Pakistan , which has no parallels in history not even in “Banana Republics”.

    The struggle of lawyers and civil society against the dictatorship is a matter of great pride for every Pakistani, these images on world media shows how much Pakistani civil society is alive and conscious of their rights and how much courageous they are to defend these rights.

  21. December 8th, 2007 5:04 am

    now people are comming out of their shells to show their REAL FACES by supporting this unjust act of lawyers.

    Pakistanis certainly dont deserve respect , because they dont have respect for thier own country.

  22. December 8th, 2007 5:09 am

    @Owais Mughal
    And let us please put this picture
    http://news.yahoo.com/nphotos/slideshow/photo//071206/481/27bdf7d2ec404b92a9d56f6c89aee8b1/

    alongside the picture you showed , to give the correct context of this “Violent” behavior , it will also tell how the term “Violence” is relative in nature.

  23. December 8th, 2007 6:14 am

    Here is another picture from the same “clash” in Multan
    http://news.yahoo.com/nphotos/slideshow/photo//071206/481/27bdf7d2ec404b92a9d56f6c89aee8b1/#/071206/481/45c60f05829c43f6848aa6a62a23e38c

    Please forgive my use of words “depravity” and “bankruptcy” as I felt myself justified in my anger on this post. This lawyer movement is going on since March 2007, and there have been hundreds of similar pictures in which innocent and unarmed people for gruesomely thrashed by the gestapo force of mad dictator , and we found only one picture depicting the anger of lawyers against these brutalities and ATP found that the picture must be displayed prominently on their web site. Which intentionaly or “unintentionaly” tries to poison this struggle. Please checkout all the world media , check “Yahoo Full Coverage” , “Google News Search” , Guardian UK, Independent UK and may be many others and you will see how these clashes have been reported by the independent media.

    I would also like to show some pictures from the developed world (US & West) in which people clash with police and use the same “Violent” behavior to vent their anger.
    http://www.nytimes.com/2007/11/27/world/europe/27paris.html?ref=world
    http://www.knbc.com/news/13257382/detail.html

    So my request to ATP is give the proper context to this story and also put the pictures of police brutality. And also please read this wikipedia entry about “Police Riot” :

    If the riot is caused by or incited by police action, it can be labelled as a “police riot.” This term is considered somewhat provocative, as most people consider the police and similar authorities to be keepers of the peace, and not inciters of riots.

  24. Nayab Khan says:
    December 8th, 2007 6:22 am

    This is very unfortunate. In Pakistan we have no ethics when it come to protesting, people would go around burn cars, damage shops and even beat people who oppose them. This lawyer is not the only one who has behaved badly. I saw pictures of lawyers beating police with sticks in lahore yesterday (shown by geo in uk). Soon there was more police and then they took the miky out of the lawyers.
    No one stops peaceful protests and i think, Police does not retaliate until these peaceful protests start breaking laws.
    Khair, police does wrong too,I think we need to educate people, Media has important role to play here, they should educate people and when showing such pictures/videos they should criticise them harshly.
    Just an example kuffar stoned Prophit Muhammad but he didn’t even curse them. should these lawyers be abusing public property like this? I think NO.

  25. Anwar says:
    December 8th, 2007 6:34 am

    Folks, we are back to our basic selves. I do not recall any civic lesson being taught in the schools…… Throughout my life I have only witness spontaneous eruption of violence at individual level and national level. When we say we are a product of feudal system then that is exactly what we are – good at feuding.
    After every decade we as a nation deconstruct whatever blood went into constructing. It is a pity!

  26. MB says:
    December 8th, 2007 7:19 am

    I am not surprised at this. I mean what you think of lawyers? Angels ? No way. You have to compare it with what they are getting from government. A brutal act of barbarism.

    So what you expect in return ? Not that its justified but you need to understand that when your (nation’s) father holds a rally in ISLAMABAD and proudly boasts that POWER HAS BEEN SHOWN in KARACHI (refering to MAY 12 ) what message he actually is conveying ?

    He is conveying that MIGHT IS RIGHT, that he only understands and talks in power terms. The society has been intoxicated by the president into believe that he who has stick will prevail. And therefore these incidents , i am actually amazed that they are not common.

  27. Hassan says:
    December 8th, 2007 8:10 am

    Excellent post and thanks for the picture
    this is unacceptable ..

  28. PurePakistani says:
    December 8th, 2007 9:01 am

    One should understand the basic difference between what Musharraf and his intelligence services are doing to human rights activists, judges, artists, and the rest of the civil society, and what we see in this picture, the smashing of a police car by few individuals happened to be lawyers or some one else wearing black coats. On the one hand we are seeing the entire government machinery committing systematic brutality and that brutality is endorsed by the government. One the other hand we are seeing some individual acts. Then shouldn’t we criticize these individuals, not the whole lawyers community. This sort of individual acts- no mater what you call them- do not represent the lawyers movement. The problem with this kind of post is that it makes certain individual acts look so huge and present them out of proportion, as the whole lawyers community is behind these acts.Violence is violence, but the guilty parties are different. An entire repressive regime versus some individual acts of violence. They are not equal in their effect and magnitude. Therefore, this post is not balanced. It distorts the reality.

  29. nota says:
    December 8th, 2007 9:07 am

    LET A THOUSAND CHE GUEVARAS BLOOM
    By Alex Hash

    ‘Shoot, coward, you’re only going to kill a man’- Fearless last words of Che Guevara to his executioner before he was shot.

    To Musharraf /Than Shwe:

    In this quagmire
    My hatred is justified
    For my heart aches hopelessly
    For freedom.
    So is my guilt
    That scatters screaming visions
    And flutters desperately
    Like a dying bird.
    I love you all
    In my naked being
    But these wings that
    Have grown out
    Have a passion to fly.
    I wish I could
    Cut blind these eyes
    That spy across horizons
    And breach your walls
    And your rules.
    Hear the prayers of a dying man:
    “Let a thousand Che bloom.”

    Written By Alex Hash: Nov 6, 2007 3:29 AM

  30. PurePakistani says:
    December 8th, 2007 9:23 am

    You see what I am trying to say! Not all violence is equal. Some people may argue it is not violence at all, it is resistance. I would not go to that extent, but I strongly believe that a few individual violent acts are no equal to a systematic government oppression. Therefore, please do not give them equal weight. It is not a balancing act.

  31. AK says:
    December 8th, 2007 9:24 am

    I am disappointed that you have only taken one picture from the events in Multan and posted it along with very one-sided comments. On other political websites, you will also find photos of lawyers’ blood-soaked clothes and open scalp wounds. The picture you have displayed reflects the anger and reaction of those who were in the crowd. Let me assure you Owais, if you were part of the demonstration, you would have reacted the same way to the police brutality as the lawyer has. It is human nature, emotions and passions run very high in such situations. Please stop taking the so called moral high ground and looking down upon other people whose struggle is just.

  32. PurePakistani says:
    December 8th, 2007 9:51 am

    Well said AK. I have previously seen Owais Mughal’s posts . He is an excellent writer and an observer. Every one is entitled to his opinion, but here I don’t agree with him. As I said earlier, Violence is violence, but the guilty parties are different. An entire repressive regime versus some individual acts of violence. They are not equal in their effect and magnitude. Therefore, this post is not balanced. It distorts the reality.

  33. zia m says:
    December 8th, 2007 9:53 am

    I was a victim of brutal lathi charge during Ayub rule can therefore understand the frustration of lawyers,but they will end up hurting their very noble cause by turning to viokence.

  34. Human says:
    December 8th, 2007 10:35 am

    The answer to this article is one liner…

    “Freedom doesn’t come easy”… read this article..

    http://sagemovement.blogspot.com/2007/12/forbidden-thoughts.html

  35. Owais Mughal says:
    December 8th, 2007 10:39 am

    uzr-e-gunaah..baad-az-gunaah..

    Violence is wrong. the photo clearly shows it is not self defense. It is anarchy.

    Agreed, that other side are no angels but so is not this group either. Moral high grounds are lost with violence and that is all the purpose of this post.

    As far as police brrutality and violence is concerned, we’ve carried posts on that issue also from time to time.

  36. PurePakistani says:
    December 8th, 2007 10:40 am

    Following up on AK’s remarks that this picture represents only half of what happened in Multan. It is about one event in which lawyers are also brutality beaten. I am just assuming that Owais Mughal perhaps does not know all the details about this event. Had he known about the pictures of blood soaked lawyers, I am sure, he would have posted them too. In the name of fairness, can I request him to post the pictures of injured lawyers and their assailants as well. Only then this post against violence will make sense. I support Owais against violence.

  37. PaaJi says:
    December 8th, 2007 10:57 am

    Behavior of these lawyers is exactly I have been crying out here. Country is under attack by extremists and enemy is inside Pakistan to provoke these kind of acts by Lawyers and other civilians in order to destabilize Pakistan.
    Pakistan must wake up and smell the coffee, unite against extremists and enemy inside Pakistan.
    Once again they will not attack Pakistan with Bombs as Pakistan is a nuclear power, They will provoke people among us to hurt Pakistan. Do not play into enemy’s hand. Be smart , keep ears and eyes open around you. Every Pakistani should act like a Pakistan Intelligence agency officer and report any activity which is not normal to the authority.

  38. Wajid Malik says:
    December 8th, 2007 11:10 am

    Shame on those who have tried to make an issue out of this picture.

    Can these shameless people tell whether they created such issues when a PM was hanged/put in exile/put in jails.

    Did they create an issue when Chied Justice was humiliated on roads and was/is house arrested.

    Did they create an issue on the way 60% or more judges were deposed and were house arrested?

    Did they make an issue when MQM thugs killed aout 50 and injured hundreds on May 12 and their Mush said MQM showed power?

    Did they create an issue when civil society, lawyers and jounalists were being beaten throughout Pakistan?

    Did these people make an issue when women were beaten by male police in Lahore?

    When police doesn’t clash with people, they remain peaceful. Every one know the movement from March 9 to Jul 20. How peaceful it was.

    But when police starts beating peaceful protesters they are NOT left with any options.

  39. Human says:
    December 8th, 2007 11:11 am

    @PaaJi

    Just like the patriot act of uncle sam.. like rats, spy on your fellow countrymen… well thats a very “nice” thing you r telling everyone to do… the extremist forces are a part of this country as well; they always have been; we just have to realize that like uncle sam realized and started dialog with Talibans in Afghanistan.. the solution lies in dialog not in sneaking around… These forces always lived peacefully in our country; the bombs started blowing only a few years back as a consequence of our government’s actions… We have no right to say that the way of life of these “extremist” elements is wrong and we have no right to impose over them what we think is right… let them be.. let them live the way they want in their own little valleys they never crossed…

  40. December 8th, 2007 11:11 am

    uzr-e-gunaah..baad-az-gunaah

    This is absolutely right but for your comment.

    Agreed, that other side are no angels but so is not this group either. Moral high grounds are lost with violence and that is all the purpose of this post.

    Putting a gestopu force lashing out absolute brutality upon the lawyers on equal moral footing with the human rights activist responding to this brutality in most natural and human way of showing public anger.

    Look at the pictures showing blood running out of heads of protesters. And you give the excuse that

    we

  41. PaaJi says:
    December 8th, 2007 11:20 am

    Human
    These talibans are not those village people.Many of them are not even Pakistani. There believe of beheading people to bring Islamic Law in Pakistan is wrong. Islam is better spread with good examples. There are many questions such as how they get weapons? who is funding them. These all questions lead to some politically motivation or to the enemy of Pakistan. These extremists are not peace full villagers. They are criminals and you can ask and Islamic scholar.

  42. Human says:
    December 8th, 2007 11:36 am

    @pejamistri… agreed. this is just a biased article… and like I said before freedom doesn’t come easy… not in a country like Pakistan…

    @PaaJi.. unfortunetly man I don’t fully agree with you… how many foreign citizens can u stuff in little villages? the arms they have are the left overs of cold war and the result of the adventures of ISI in the past… the issue is debatable but what you are just saying what i hear on cnn and skynews… and as a muslim I have studied Islam enough to only consult a scholar when the truth is not as obvious… anyway there are other ways to tackle this problem because too many innocent people are dying as collateral damage…

  43. Salute the men in black says:
    December 8th, 2007 11:38 am

    Keep it up Boys, Boycott PCO Judges…..

  44. Aqil Sajjad says:
    December 8th, 2007 11:41 am

    From what I have read, the police started beating the lawyers who were protesting peacefully, and then they retaliated by beating up the policemen. It’s easy to condemn the lawyers while sitting in a living room, but if you are actually in a protest and the police is hitting you, it’s difficult not to lose your cool. Even the law recognizes the right of a person to hit back in self-defense.

    This post is seriously problematic because it is presenting the protestors as if they are the ones who started the violance. The comments in agreement with the post can only come from drawing room moralists who have never personally participated in a protest and had their heads bashed by the police sticks to know that its only human for people to get angry when they are being brutally attacked. First go and participate in a peaceful protest, endure police sticks without losing your cool and then you will have some weight in issuing these sermons.

  45. PatExpat says:
    December 8th, 2007 11:42 am

    This is a new low for this website. The name of this website should be changed to All For Musharraf.

    Where are the pictures of brutal beating of lawyers (which happens almost daily), journalists, house arrests of judges etc?

    I was expecting that this website would have mentioned the documentary on missing persons that is making the rounds on You Tube and Google Video. But then it would have too much for this websites biased administrators.

  46. designer says:
    December 8th, 2007 11:45 am

    when the govt is treating the nations sisters like this than everything and reaction is right and justified
    http://img223.imageshack.us/img223/2287/11002997611mw1.jpg

  47. Kruman says:
    December 8th, 2007 11:48 am

    Adil you’ll need to take over the site again. Owais is going to run this into the ground with articles like this, he already has. Atleast Adil tries to balanced and is a more savvy journalist.

    Owais, you ought to be ashamed for this post. You need to apologize to the entire nation, especially the lawyers.

  48. PaaJi says:
    December 8th, 2007 11:48 am

    How many of you think Mushraf will go before next 5 yrs? Lets be honest? Now if we all believe Mushraf is there to stay for next 5 yrs. Then what is this destruction of your own country? Only way Mushraf will go before next 5 yrs is if the people of Pakistan come into streets in millions of numbers. I think people who are crying about these images of lawyers with head bleeding are trying to bring people into streets. But that has not happened. One wonders why? Why people of Pakistan has given up on giving life for politicians? They have a past record now. Pakistan has aged more than 60 yrs now and people of Pakistan know better what has happened in Past.
    Produce a leader like Jinnah then people will come in the streets.

  49. Lahori says:
    December 8th, 2007 11:55 am

    Wajid Malk, have you ever read things on this blog…. here are answers to what you ask:

    Can these shameless people tell whether they created such issues when a PM was hanged/put in exile/put in jails.
    ATP WAS NOT FUNCTIONING THEN BUT HAS WRITTEN ABOUT IT SINCE.

    Did they create an issue when Chied Justice was humiliated on roads and was/is house arrested.
    YES, MADE A MAJOR ISSUE. REPEATEDLY WROTE ABOUT AND PUT PICTURES OF THAT HUMILIATION WHEN ALL THE LOTAS OF TODAY WERE SILENT.

    Did they create an issue on the way 60% or more judges were deposed and were house arrested?
    YES, LOOK AT RIGHT HAND COLUMN FOR LINKS TO THOSE POSTS

    Did they make an issue when MQM thugs killed aout 50 and injured hundreds on May 12 and their Mush said MQM showed power?
    YES, HUGE ISSUE. I REMEMBER THAT FOR MANY DAYS THAT WAS ONLY THING AND THERE WAS A LONG POST WITH DOZENS OF PICTURES AND CONSTANT UPDATES AT THE TIME ITSELF.

    Did they create an issue when civil society, lawyers and jounalists were being beaten throughout Pakistan?
    YES, THEY DID. AGAIN, LOOK AT LINKS ON RIGHT HAND COLUMN ON THIS.

    Did these people make an issue when women were beaten by male police in Lahore?
    SEE ABOVE.

    When police doesn

  50. PaaJi says:
    December 8th, 2007 11:58 am

    All the people calling this article unfair and there are not enough articles on other issues. You all very funny and this shows the intelligence level of you all.

  51. MQ says:
    December 8th, 2007 12:03 pm

    Is it illegal? Yes, it is. But so was the storming of the Bastille

  52. Lahori says:
    December 8th, 2007 12:03 pm

    PAT EXPAT says:

    Where are the pictures of brutal beating of lawyers (which happens almost daily), journalists, house arrests of judges etc?

    HERE THEY ARE:
    http://pakistaniat.com/2006/12/28/police-shame-pakistan/
    http://pakistaniat.com/2007/03/12/pakistan-judiciary-supreme-court-chief-justice-musharraf-iftikhar-police-brutality-beating-lawyers-protest/
    http://pakistaniat.com/2007/05/12/karachi-burning-civil-war-firing-dead-violence-mqm-aaj/
    http://pakistaniat.com/2007/11/16/paistan-protest-pictures-emergency/

    I am sure there are more also.

    This site is the Pakistani blog that remains unbiased andsticks to principles instead of slogans, lets please keep it that way.

  53. RE says:
    December 8th, 2007 12:10 pm

    Paa Jii
    Agree with you 100% this is been my view point. I have said many times Bush war in Iraq is worse acts for many Americans, but they do not come in streets and destroy their own country they are just waiting it out. Be civilized or give up your nukes. Act like a nuke power.
    Allah Bless Pakistan

  54. angry says:
    December 8th, 2007 12:21 pm

    I disgaree totally. Lawyers have protested peacefully for a long time and every time they do so police charges them with batons.if you dont allow peaceful protest this is the reaction that will come out.there is no fault of lawyers in this. unless the govt. opens its eyes it is looking at an armed civil war

  55. Wajid Malik says:
    December 8th, 2007 12:22 pm

    Mr Lahori.

    Give evidence if any topic against Musharraf and his dictatorship or about his unconstitutional acts.

    Any thing against agencies role in missing persons.

  56. December 8th, 2007 12:25 pm

    @lahori and those who are defending this provacative article including the writer of this post.
    The issue is not at all if this site has highlighted the previous issues are not. The problem with this post is inherent in itself not with this website. I have wrote given comment and posted my response to this post in my blog.
    But I strongly urge the administrators of this blog to put this picture in proper context by putting the pictures of police brutality in the same clash. There is no excuse why these pictures should not be put.
    I also request my fellow readers of this blog to urge the administrators this blog as the biased nature of this picture and this post is causing a damage to the struggle of civil society and I am sure in his next sermon to the nation mad dictator is going to refer to this blog definitely.

  57. RE says:
    December 8th, 2007 12:33 pm

    @Wajid Malik
    In past many came did things against laws and left country with billions of dollars. we are used to this. Now this President does things and break laws with out taking billions of dollars out of country but he brought in more than 10 billion dollars in the country. Relax buddy and give us options if Mushraf leaves? Our country is not messed up because of people of Pakistan , Its messed up because outsiders playing with our mind.
    Do not think this mess will be fixed over night , Let Mushraf establish the base first. Basic things need to put on place before corruption leaves Pakistan.Mushraf is Pakistani citizen , A solder he knows how to defend Pakistan on border now he is taken a role to put Pakistan to top , give him the chance. Please do not act like enemy of Pakistan.

  58. Bilal Ijaz says:
    December 8th, 2007 12:47 pm

    Well said, pejamistri. I completely agree. This post needs to be either amended wholesale or better yet, simply taken down.

    ATP Admins: After hundreds of protests where the lawyers were trying to protests peacefully and were beaten up mercilessly, you focus on the ONE where the lawyers gave back as good as they got. Shameful, absurd and disgusting! Your bias is nauseating. This blog’s coverage of the current crisis has been decidedly ambivalent and nothing short of embarrassing which is very disappointing. Mushrraf has run over the constitution, has illegally arrested the judges, has tortured lawyers and is running the country like it is his personal jageer.

    Can you please do a story where you post the picture of Ghazala Minallah, the daughter of great Justice Safdar Shah, where she was singled out, beaten mercilessly and suffered head wounds when she was doing nothing but participating in a peaceful protest? What was her crime? That she wrote a letter to Benazir Bhutto asking her to grow a conscience? Was that worthy of having her head opened up with a lathi charge? There are pictures floating around the net. Why aren’t they here? Why don’t you do a story on a defenseless woman being singled out, targeted and beaten by Musharraf’s gestapo? They are targeting even the daughters of justices and wives of lawyers and yet you preach non-violence to us. Remarkable!

    Owais Mughal sahib when you go out and protest (if you do at all), please feel free to take the lathi charge “peacefully”. Please take as many beatings at the hands of Musharraf’s gestapo as you like but until you do that, please keep your hollow lectures on morality, non-violence, etc to yourself.

    Long live the lawyers! Long live the non-PCO judges – the only, real judges! Long live these Pakistani heroes!

  59. Lahori says:
    December 8th, 2007 12:50 pm

    For Mr. Wajid Malik just read all the links in the link below…. let me know if you need for evidence.
    http://pakistaniat.com/2007/11/05/pakistan-chronology-emergency-political-meltdown-musharraf-benazir/

    Now, lets hear about when you spoke up!

  60. Daktar says:
    December 8th, 2007 12:55 pm

    Having been a long-time reader of ATP, I read the comments here and they are EXACTLY the same as comments on earlier posts showing violence by police. The only difference is that a different set of people are justifying violence this time. Otherwise there is no difference at all between those who support violence by government and those who support violence against government. What is even more disturbing than this picture or the one of the young man protesting for his missing father whose shalwar was pulled down is the fact that so many people on both sides are so willing and eager to use violence as the solution. That is really really disturbing.

    I believe we have to decide not only which side of the issue we are on but also which tactics we are with. I am with Aitizaz Ahsan and Munir Malik when they call for peaceful non-violent protest. I am with those doing candlelight vigils in Karachi. I am with those sending flowers to the judges. I am against those who adopt violent means, whether they are from ISI or over-heated jialla types.

  61. PaaJi says:
    December 8th, 2007 1:02 pm

    I believe if Mafia makes the money by fooling people or from drugs and then later use it for good some times thats the only option left outside. USA is world power can eliminate the whole world withen few hours. Smart people will be friends with USA. Why not? If you can be friend with USA and become strong country in the process why not? Mushraf is doing just that but it makes many unhappy. You can see their anger on this board.

  62. Confused says:
    December 8th, 2007 1:13 pm

    PejMistry and friends, you are a funny lot.
    The piture was originally published in Dawn. Right?
    So, why is it OK if Dawn publishes it but not OK if a blog reproduces it?
    ATP guys, have to hand it to you. People really think you are influential, even more influential than Dawn, that they want to influence your views on this. You guys really have a following, man!

  63. December 8th, 2007 1:14 pm

    @Daktar
    The question here is not supporting the violence, question is very simple , the post in question is at the very least “highly biased” , the writer of this post has given one side of the story in a highly provactive manner. And don’t tell me that in the picture of “young man protesting for his missing father ” the police side of story was not given :).
    There is no question of promoting violence or asking for use of violent means to show your anger , nobody is doing that. Only question is that should a person be allowed to give a single sided face of “public anger” and completely ignore the brutality of police in the same clash.
    I won’t object if the writer of this post just place the pictures of police brutalities, alongside this picture and may condemn the behavior of some of these people involved in this rioting.

  64. PaaJi says:
    December 8th, 2007 1:17 pm

    Other thing this board has almost 90 percent posts by people are against Mushraf. Very strange I was att BBC board and 90% posts are in favor of Mushraf.

  65. Anwar says:
    December 8th, 2007 1:23 pm

    Adil,
    Is it possible to limit the number of posts by a single person to no more than three? I notice that the discussions gets asymptototically out of hand and divergent.

  66. Badar says:
    December 8th, 2007 1:34 pm

    http://pkpolitics.com/2007/12/08/lawyers-in-multan-beat-police/
    i agree with everyone who say violent protests are unacceptable even in the face of such brutality from the police (having personally been on the receiving end), specially when it leads to the damage of public and private property. however i urge all ATP readers and admins to visit the above url and see the other side of the story, what actually prompted such actions from the lawyers.. its not a justification nor does it legitimize their actions but maybe it will help shed some new light on the matter.
    i apologize if someone has already pointed this out and this is a re-post.

  67. Kruman says:
    December 8th, 2007 1:37 pm

    I second Pejamistri. At the minimum <strong>ATP needs to add images of blood-soaked lawyers in this post</strong> too. Otherwise it is a totally one-sided story that filters out the violence of the police in Multan.

  68. PaaJi says:
    December 8th, 2007 1:42 pm

    Images of blood-soaked lawyers to be added here? Why not discuss who is funding these Lawyers? They make little money and how can they go on like this? Enemy is inside Pakistan who is funding them.
    Images of blood-soaked lawyers will do what? If you see the front page the picture of old lady speaks a lot about everything.

  69. Confused says:
    December 8th, 2007 1:44 pm

    Kruman, are you demanding the same from DAWN?

  70. S. Farooqui says:
    December 8th, 2007 2:01 pm

    Maybe all of those demanding this or that of a little blog should also demand of the lawyers not to follow teh footsteps of Musharrafs goons and not to indulge in violence. Maybe a better use of your time is suggesting to them that being violent does not help our cause of democracy and freedom.

  71. meengla says:
    December 8th, 2007 2:11 pm

    This is totally (almost totally) unrelated to this Topic but I wish someone can write an article or do something about the ‘Sad State of Karachi Beaches’.

    http://ko.offroadpakistan.com/2007/09/the_sad_state_of_karachi_beaches.html

    If the activities of the various branches of military are correctly portrayed in this article then it should make your blood boil. We ‘bloody civilians’ are the 2nd rate citizens of Pakistan!

  72. Rafay Kashmiri says:
    December 8th, 2007 2:17 pm

    @ I am beginning to be a little doubtful about these
    black coats, representing who ? only Ex CJ, no Sir,
    there is something behind, very strange indeed, will comout very soon.

  73. Abid says:
    December 8th, 2007 2:22 pm

    Perhaps ATP could create a Brutality Index, which accounts for contextual factors in a protest/conflict.

  74. Raza Rumi says:
    December 8th, 2007 2:29 pm

    What is the fuss all about – ATP posts a lot of stuff that is about resisting and what can be done – and a barrage of comments follows congratulating the blog for saying the “right” thing -

    And it posts a picture taken from a national newspaper – to show the other side and there is a hangama here..

    This reminds me of the famous sentence uttered by a lawyer activist during the post March campaign: if the decision (on CJ case) will not be favourable, we will set the Supreme Court on fire..

    This just shows that we the Pakistanis, whether at home or abroad, are not comfortable with the idea of a civilized discourse. There are some here who have shown the other side of the story and not attacked the ATP the way some have done and dareIsay in a distasteful manner..

    what a pity …

  75. bilal says:
    December 8th, 2007 2:46 pm

    there is something terribly warped about the logic of those who are writing against lawyers use of violence. it reflects the primitive notions of violence and one cannot differentiate between the violence of the oppressor and the oppressed.

    so, what do you do when you are not allowed to protest? your media is in gags? and if you do protest, the police will beat you, abduct you and your family without any charges. listen philistines: freedoms are not granted, they are fought and won. this is what a struggle entails. if a struggle only meant ‘peaceful’ chanting slogans outside the government.

    and legally speaking, if there is not constitution, what law are you propagating? i presume the one that musharraf and his cronies have in mind: everything that suits the general is the law, rest may go to the dustbin.

    get a political education before teaching us about law and protests.

    more power to the lawyers and those who stand up and

  76. Rafay Kashmiri says:
    December 8th, 2007 2:49 pm

    Halwai, Kalay coat mein,

    @ Ye jis kay Naam pay ho raha hay ye balwa
    Woh Nazaria ik Halwai ka tha bangaya pera
    Ye tor-phor kiu’n ho rehi hay magar
    Rafay Badmazah hogaya hay yu’n Halwa

  77. December 8th, 2007 2:57 pm

    @Raza Rumi
    I don’t understand what sort of defiance is this. This is not about debating this picture , this is about maligning the peaceful struggle that is running for over 9 months with this one picture and posting it on the most widely read blog which can be used as a reference. Why not just put the other pictures so that the reference is complete.

  78. Beena says:
    December 8th, 2007 3:10 pm

    Peja sahib, how is this ‘maligning’ anyone. The caption says clearly that it supports protests but not this form of violence. It is nowhere saying that the lawyers movement is violence, in fact clearly makes the case that it has not been. The only reason this picture is special is that unlike govt which has been regularly violent, this is unusual for lawyers and therefore IS noteworthy. There are multiple links to the other pictures (many from you) also posted in the comments and many more links to violence by the government in the post itself. So unless this is some sort of a personal vendetta against a competing blog it is not clear what the fuss is about.

    (Frankly, as someone who is clearly against Musharraf and for the lawyers movement from the beginning I am getting embarrassed by the bullying of the supporters of the lawyers on this board! More than this picture it is these comments which call for more violence that will hurt the image of the lawyers movement as a peaceful movement for democracy.)

  79. December 8th, 2007 3:19 pm

    @Beena
    There is no “Personal Vendetta” as you have put it, I have put my case strongly here and many of the commentators have supported it. It is upto the administrators of this blog to decide if they want to correct it or not. However I feel that this single post has caused a lot of damage to the peaceful struggle of lawyers , the obvious impression given in this post is that the lawyers movement is violent and mad dictator is using this as an excuse to keep martial law imposed as well as keep the people under house arrest.
    I can assure you that mad dictator and his cronies are going to use this as a reference to make the west believe that the fundamental rights will remain suspended as well as the brave lawyers and honourable judges will remain under arrest because there will be voilence if he releases them.

  80. saad says:
    December 8th, 2007 3:25 pm

    Mughal sb.!What else do u expect in a state where supreme court is under detention and where everyone protesting peacefully is beaten like anything.When you close all the doors to justice, violence is the inevitable result.Perhaps u should watch Maula jat to realise this fact.

  81. Tehseen says:
    December 8th, 2007 3:40 pm

    Even police has apologised with the Lawyer and have promised to mend;

    http://jang.com.pk/jang/dec2007-daily/08-12-2007/mulkbharse/nat6.gif

    This article has become an example of “mudaee sust gawah chust” :)

  82. Tanweer Amjad says:
    December 8th, 2007 3:59 pm

    We will just wait for the day when the writer of this article will some day realise that he has in fact lowered the morales of the lawyers, journalists, and people from all sectors supporting the struggle towards restoration of juidiciary. People giving stupid arguments like these lawyers are sponsored… Shame on the establishment which is supporting a few people for very small pays. It would have been better had they join struggle with all the suffering people of Pakistan.
    ‘Image of Pakistan’… Remember if all the lawyers go and sit in a mosque start praying for their cause… would it be acceptable for the writer. I think this could be the safest way to protest and the result would be more effective.
    These reactions are taught by the time spent during the freedom… And I wish this changes the image of Pakistan in the minds of the establishment and they start pondering somewhat differently towards the situation… to hell with the image transmitted to the western observer and elite class.

  83. Qandeel says:
    December 8th, 2007 4:01 pm

    Owais, as a matter of principle what you say is right, protests should be non-violent and as “dignified” as possible, but I think the reason people are having a difficult time grappling with this post is your black & white approach.

    Shouldn’t some legroom be given to the principle in light of all that is going on in Pakistan? Should a suppressed man be expected to behave as a gentleman? I liked that quote from an earlier comment: “in this quagmire, my hatred is justified.” The lawyers pictured here, if they are indeed lawyers and not hellraising impostors hired by Nawaz Sharif, are vandalising a car, but surely you can, to an extent, empathise with their anger/actions…?

    The principle you advocate can serve as a good yardstick if we were dealing with a society as politically neutral and socially peaceful as, say, Norway. A picture like this would create havoc in Stavanger. But we’re dealing with an entirely different ball game here.

  84. Viqar says:
    December 8th, 2007 5:25 pm

    Nothing is new.
    It has been like this all the time, protesters smashing property, police smashing protesters, and other people condeming/supporting police or protesters.
    Nothing will change …

  85. Abid says:
    December 8th, 2007 5:48 pm

    Qandeel said it best. We are definitely dealing with a different ball game here

  86. saad says:
    December 8th, 2007 6:27 pm

    haha funny what kind of article is this? If u take a dog and u keep torturing it, its gonna bite u in the ass the first chance it gets. The same logic applies here.. when you are going to use illegal and brutal force to uphold an illegal martial law then you can expect a much worse reaction then this. And logically speaking these police are criminals since they are upholding a government which is unconstitutionally in power.

  87. Sophomore Year says:
    December 8th, 2007 6:41 pm

    I am from Karachi. I support Musharraf . I support Altaf Hussain . My support for one does not depend on the other.
    There are a lot of people who malign Pervez Musharraf for what he has done. They do not see that Pervez Musharraf is not a corrupt man unlike the two thuggish ex-Prime Ministers and that he has recovered trillions of rupes from corrupt bureaucrats and even military officials like Mansurul Haq who helped themselves to tax-payers’ money with the help of Nawaz Sharif, Zardari and Benazir Bhutto.

    In a Pakistan which still is in the feudal Dark Ages, Karachiites are the only educated tax-paying and law-abiding class of citizens. All these protests after the November emergency, I have not seen a single one in which bullets were fired .

    Contrast that with Benazir Bhutto’s time when one could get killed in a fake encounter or Nawaz Sharif’s time when one could get tried by a military court for raising one’s voice aginst the excesses of the government ( as happened in the Hakim Saeed murder case).

    I feel that the majority of people who oppose Musharraf are themselves prejudiced and support corrupt feudal politicians who have harmed Pakistan before and will harm Pakistan again. In feudal Pakistan there are no points for honesty and efficiency. There are only points for a third-rate tribal mentality.

    I could be wrong. But then I am a Karachiite and I have seen the days when the Army mass-murdered educated, tax-paying middle-class citizens in Karachi from 1992-99 and nor a single federal (read feudal) politician raised his voice. Yet today, these “democratic” goons abuse the freedom that Musharraf has given them and sabotage and attack government property to protest against rule by the same Army.

    Please tell me my fellow Pakistanis if I am wrong.

  88. Nasar says:
    December 8th, 2007 7:26 pm

    So essentially what Saad and Abid are saying is that violent behavior is justified if one is being opressed and has no other means of expressing it. Hmm… I would think that by that logic it is also justified to blow oneself up in a crowded place if one’s circumstances are dire enough. Interesting…

    Such behavior by the lawyers is not a one time occurence as some readers have suggested. Manhandling Senator Tariq Azeem, spray panting a government lawyer’s face, crossing police lines while conducting so called “peaceful protests” and threats to burn down the supreme court depicts a pretty ghastly track record.

    Use of force is the real issue regardless of who uses it.

  89. whole LOTA love says:
    December 8th, 2007 7:50 pm

    I have only one word to describe all these ppl who supprts lawyers shameful ack

    HOPELESS HOPELESS HOPELESS

    they are all dictators themselves, THIS website has been covering events in a balanced way, everything has been in those SICK people but now this article just ticked them off

    reason??
    cuz THEY JUST CANT FACE THE TRUTH, their minds are still in the evolutionary process and will take them a million year more to develop an ability to perceive things LIKE HUMANS.

  90. Meengla says:
    December 8th, 2007 9:11 pm

    Another impertinence on my part. But another gem I found. This time by Pervez Hoodbhoy from 1985. This is a blogspace–and not a ‘discussion board’.
    http://www.sacw.net/HateEducation/1985HoodbhoyNayyar06022005.html

    “Introduction
    Education in Pakistan, from schools to universities, is being fundamentally redefined. This development is expected to have profound implications for the future of the country’s society and politics. Most changes are traceable to factors related to the stability of the present government, but there are also others which cannot be analysed as a mere response to immediate threats. A new concept of education now prevails, the full impact of which will probably be felt by the turn of the century, when the present generation of school children attains maturity.”

    Ahh, the last sentence!

  91. Israr says:
    December 9th, 2007 12:00 am

    I have to ask this question, how many of the readers here think
    the police car is ” public Property ” ot may be Musharaf Property, Pervaiz Elahi property, benazir property, nawaz sharif property. What public funstion does the police do
    Violence is violence , yes but we are so quick to comment on it, but these are maxims of a society built and run on the basis of rule of Law, when might is right than ” might” is what is needed. Police needs to get the taste, The SSP and IG needs to be beat up too, their kids should be put under house arrest aswell with no reocourse only than will these guys understand the need for Habeous Corpus .

  92. Viqar Minai says:
    December 9th, 2007 12:25 am

    Owais,
    I think if half the readers accuse you of anti-Musharraf bias and the other half of pro-Musharraf bias, then you must be doing soemthing right.

    There have been enough anti-establishment articles and comments and, in this article also, I do not believe the intent was to vilify the lawyer’s movement as such; only to point out that the upholders of the law should not acts in unlawful and violent way.

    I think many commentators have gone way overboard with their criticism of the post, the website, and Owais himself.

    Take it easy folks … go out and get a breath of fresh air …

  93. Aqil Sajjad says:
    December 9th, 2007 1:05 am

    While I myself disagree with the overall thrust of the article (criticising the lawyers when they turned violant only after having been brutally attacked by the police in that demonstration in Multan), I an in full agreement with Viqar’s above post. The criticism directed at Owais and the website itself has gone way overboard and crossed the limits of fairness. Owais is fully entitled to his opinion and just because some of us disagree with him does not mean we should go to the extent that some of the critics have gone.

  94. Rafay Kashmiri says:
    December 9th, 2007 7:39 am

    Tributes to those honest militants :
    @ Freedom

    Brand my brow with the seal of freedom
    I am that captivated stallion who, for centuries,
    Has been constrained, without water and greeness in the
    sullen gravity of environments.
    Brand me with the seal of freedom so that your friends,
    from my broiled forhead gather,
    That I have been honoured by being aptivated by newly
    created gods.

    Earlier, your ancestors,
    For the conquest of cities,
    Have made me run in battle fields
    For their lust for throne and sovereignty,
    I have trampled east and west with the tap of my hooves.

    Today, still, I am the old stallion of supeior breed
    Handover my reins to some dictator
    Who may push me in the melting fire and steel
    For multiplying his heaps of gold and silver.

    Yes, I may but tell you a secret
    Shedding the sparks of firm insurrection
    My fellow men are awake with the same tone of feelings,
    No more the cloak of any dictator shall be secure.

    Zaheer Kashmiri

  95. Boy Wonder says:
    December 9th, 2007 8:51 am

    Sophomore Year said: Karachiites are the only educated tax-paying and law-abiding class of citizens.

    Keep Dreaming…..in Karachi

  96. AK says:
    December 9th, 2007 9:12 am

    It is perfectly alright to disagree with the post and to post a dissenting point of view. I am one of the people who think the picture does not reflect the complete episode as it happened. But unfortunately, people on both sides of the arguement have become too passionate about their points of view. I do not agree with Owais Mughal the way he started the thread, but I respect him as an experienced and astute blogger. It hurts me to see that people have accused him of being pro-Musharraf and called him names. Similarly, some people on the other side of the arguement have insulted people criticising Owais- names such as monkeys and a million years short of evolution. Political debates can become emotional but I appeal to all to remain civilised and objective. Perhaps that is one quality we lack as a nation and all leaders reflect this trait of ours.

  97. Social Mistri says:
    December 9th, 2007 10:00 am

    I am surprised that the reactions to this article and the posting of this picture are so severe. It could only suggest that the vast majority of the audience here is disconnected with Pakistan. Growing up in Ayub’s, Bhutto’s, Zia’s, Benazir’s and Nawaz Sharif’s times, has the readership here not grown immune to this sort of rubbish?

    Here is the reality. These two lawyers who are destroying that police van WERE NOT personally subjected to brutality. No one will be able to produce a picture of their bloodied heads, or those of anyone in their family (unless of course what happened right after their act of vandalism was a slap across the face by a police man :-)) All this nonsense about distinguishing the “violence of the oppressed” from the “violence of the oppressor” is, with respect, bloody rubbish. If you have EVER attended a protest in Pakistan you will know that 99% of the time the most “active” participants WANT to get into a fight with the police. They actively take “pangas”. They don’t believe in any values, ethics or issues. They just get a kick out of smashing windows under the protection of a mob. The same thing happened with the protests related to the Danish cartoon incident, the same happens at almost every large politco-religous rally where there is even a faint us vs. them theme in play… aur kyoun kay yeh kehtay huay mujhay sharam bhi aati hay aur dukh bhi hota hay, yehi pagalpan dekhnay mein aata hay jab aath das student ya dost aik “mob” mentaltiy kay saath kisi sarak mein guzartay hein. koi langra kutta nazar aa gaya to us ko casually pathar maar diya. koi larki nazar aa gaee to us ko tang kar lia. koi rastay mein aa gaya to us say laraee mol lay lee. Hamari social evolution bahaisiat aik qaum kay, aur aik decent citizenry kay, abhi huee nahieen. The vast majority of protests in this social context are nothing but demonstrations of depravity of various types.

    And as for the huge outpouring of public support for the ex-CJ, let us remember, even in Pakistan, the outpouring of public support for Saddam was much greater back in 1990. Where did that public support go? Based on these window smashing protests, if you believe that some fundamental shift is afoot in Pakistan, my friends, you have yet not been introduced to the fickle nature of protest politics in our country, nor to the short attention span of our populace (and undoubtedly, most across the world). If we can’t be realists, at least let’s end our journey to freakin’ fantasy land. Someone once said to Mr. Jinnah, “the muslims of the subcontinent created Pakistan!”. And Mr. Jinnah responded, “Pakistan was created 85% by the British, 10% by me, 3% by the Congress and 2% by my private secretary”. Before you launch into a diatribe about how arrogant of a remark that was… think about it… Jinnah was not discounting the support of the masses, but merely pointing out that the masses can be mobilised for any number of causes. For good, and for bad (as we saw in Nazi Germany to name just one). Mass rallies have very little to do with right and wrong.

    Don’t read too much into this rubbish. Improvement through protests and window smashing will not happen. Improvement through a 7-8% growth in our GDP, sustained over many years, WILL happen. Anything that interferes with the latter is not in the interest of Pakistan. Aqal aur decency ka koi teeka nahien eejad hua jo suddenly march mein kissi nay lawyer baradari ko en masse laga diya ho. Utnay hi achay ya decrepit hein jitnay january mein thay.

  98. crimson says:
    December 9th, 2007 11:21 am

    So – these are the lawyers that are being billed as the saviors of Pakistan? God help us.

  99. Tehseen says:
    December 9th, 2007 11:53 am

    Pakistani psyche is such that if a strong party siphons billions, abducts people without authority and even kills, this becomes acceptable or at least tolerable somehow…what is not acceptable is a weaker party to break a few glasses…oh no that is totally unacceptable

  100. Lahori says:
    December 9th, 2007 12:31 pm

    RE, your wish is granted. We DO have a MAFIA type leader today

  101. Umar Shah says:
    December 9th, 2007 1:33 pm

    The action of some individuals shouldnt be representative of the overall struggle. The ‘I know it all and you people dont know anything’ type of comments from contributors like Social Mistri are also disturbing. Everyone has the right to say what they want and feel about the subject under discussion.

  102. RE says:
    December 9th, 2007 2:20 pm

    Lahori may be as long intentions are in the interest of Pakistan.And he is not going to take money out of country.

  103. Social Mistri says:
    December 9th, 2007 10:14 pm

    Umar Shah, while I don’t mind disturbing you, where did I suggest that you know nothing? Moreover, I have not stopped anyone from saying whatever they like. Let’s not make this personal. Thank you.

  104. December 10th, 2007 2:03 am

    yup i agree tooo….we always say dont break rukes and then the ppl who were saying that were in front to break it all……

  105. December 10th, 2007 2:38 am

    I will disagree with you mistri for i think you are taking Owais out of context. He never said that the whole struggle is wrong or that protesting against Mr Musharaff is wrong. The only point he made was that violence is not justified in what ever form it is.
    This is one school of thouught and may be i personally dont agree with him but i should not bias my judgement based on my personal thinking. You all hate Musharaff and speak on different blogs and different platforms against the violence that the regime is committing but now you says that if the group of lawyers have the power to response, they should do that. If you are justifying violence for the mere fact that they have the ability then it means all the brutual acts of government are also justified as they also have the means to do this. Moreover, you are also justifying what the Talibans or Fazlullah are doing in Swat and FATA for they also have the ability to respond to government acts.
    I think thats not how you respond to things and i think that was the only reason our sympathies were with the lawyers for they were on the right side and using right means for it. If they also start acting like the forces in power, then whats the difference between them.
    No hard feeling here for its just my opinion and i am also against the current government but i dont agree on the means to reach our common objective.
    Regards,
    M J K
    http://thelandofpure.blogspot.com/

    pS: I know people dont like being diagreed with and thats why the previous two comments came down so harsh on Mistri and discredited all his previous stances. Its pretty disappointing that we all act the same when we have the ability and power to do same. We dont tolerate opinions that dont agree with us and star insulting so how come you expect the people in power to tolerate it. Seems there is no much difference in those passing personal remarks on Owais to that of the person who is in power these days and doing the same with everyone of us.

  106. Junaid says:
    December 10th, 2007 11:21 am

    What happened in multan was the best thing.police deserve some of their own medicine.lawyers have always staged a peaceful movement but they r always beaten up pretty badly by the police.it was the right thing to do un der the circumstances.the establishment must be given a dose of its own medicne.

  107. omar says:
    December 10th, 2007 11:45 am

    I agree with mistri sahib. By putting this picture on the blog, you are opening yourself to the suspicion that you support the armed gang now running pakistan. First of all, the police is not even a legitimate organization at this time. In the absence of the constitution and rule of law, it is just another armed gang. If they come and beat up lawyers, the lawyers have no way to go to court or go to the police. …obviously they have to defend themselves physically.

  108. December 11th, 2007 1:19 pm

    That has been a major problem with us as a nation. We have yet to find that middle-ground path for constant struggle. Either we are too violent, like in the picture, or dead-silent. Anything other then a careful, measured process adopted by the masses will be counter-productive.

  109. Riaz2 says:
    December 11th, 2007 1:58 pm

    who is funding these lawyers?

  110. Anmool says:
    December 11th, 2007 2:02 pm

    Riaz2′s question: “who is funding these lawyers?” strikes me as either a silly question or a malicious one.

    Why does one need to be funded to speak out for one’s rights and demanding freedom and democracy (even though I think these particular guys are doing the wrong thing by being violent).

    If his question is fair, then, I guess it is also fair to ask him and others who ask this here, “WHO IS FUNDING YOU TO WRITE AGAINST THESE LAWYERS AND WRITE AGAINST THOSE DEMANDING FREEDOM AND DEMOCRACY FOR PAKISTAN?”

  111. RE says:
    December 11th, 2007 2:39 pm

    These lawyers hardly make day to day living.Going to jail not at work for months can be tough for one.Not to forget people who are running around courts for years they are coming from long distances and then no lawyers there.
    If Lawyers are protesting without anyone’s influence I am all for that.

    Allah Bless Pakistan
    Unite for the interest of Pakistan.

  112. December 11th, 2007 3:03 pm

    All readers are requested to desist from using ATP as a forum for rumor-mongering and slander. While some nominal element of speculation can be part of analysis, wide-scale and repeated planting of slander, hearsay, unsubstantiated labels (for the purpose of questioning someone

  113. RE says:
    December 11th, 2007 4:48 pm

    ATP
    Proof of people not understand the nature of the threats Pakistan is facing at international level as of today ? But people are busy protesting against the kind of internal problem which we grew up with.
    Extremism, beheading of army personals from our own people, outside media not telling the true story to the rest of world , but they are more worried about our nukes?
    These are the issues we did not grew up with. I am having hard time understanding educated people of Pakistan who are not protesting on these issues.Not writing on these issues.
    No need for proof of someone destabilizing our nation all you have to see how the things move inside the country and then use your brain.
    Allah bless Pakistan
    Unite for the interest of your nation.

  114. Social Mistri says:
    December 11th, 2007 11:43 pm

    Junaid Khan sahib, I think you misunderstood me. What I was saying was that all this hullaballoo that has been raised about the “whole country” being on the CJ’s side and Musharraf being isolated is complete hogwash. A few protests do not national opinion reflect. Moreover, I was saying that we as a nation, have a tendency to transform a political gathering or march into a little bit of a freak show… the rock throwing etc. is done for entertainment, seldom to make a point (there is no point, as you will note, in breaking a window of some innocent dukandaar’s shop).

    Lastly, I fully support President Musharraf. Which is why I pointed out that window smashing will not improve our lot, but eyars of 7-8% GDP growth WILL. I had used the Jinnah comment to point out how great leaders of our nation have always understood that mass rallies in an uneducated society mean and reflect very little, specially when they represent .01% of the population.

  115. Adnan says:
    December 13th, 2007 12:44 am

    AoA: Although in principle you are right that this is not the way to protest but we need to put this in the right context: the police in Multan used all types of brute force including outright torture against the legal community which was previously protesting peacefully and this is what triggered the violence from the lawyers community. Its always easy for the tyrant to use all force and keep lecturing others about peaceful protests.

  116. RE says:
    December 13th, 2007 11:16 am

    Today more 6 our Army Jawans dead by Extremists terrorists. Where is the outrage? Where is front page article on this.This is the real threat Pakistan is facing today. This is the real issue for today? Why people are not out on streets protesting against these extremists? Why Lawyers are not out?
    This is the army solders defends us from enemy. There should be a fund established to support their families left behind. There funerals should be shown as the funeral of heroes.
    Allah Bless Pakistan
    Unite for the interest of Pakistan.

  117. Eric says:
    February 10th, 2008 1:16 am

    No one, not Musharraf, not police, not army gets up in the morning, looks out of the window and says, it is a nice day to go and beat up some lawyers.

    The lawyers, or some among them throw stones or push the barriers, and get spanked.
    Election is the way to bring about change. If there is rigging, then they will have a reason.To assert before hand that there will be rigging is criminal behavior. The whole world is watching the elections, there are innumerable observers, reporters, etc. VOTES WILL COUNTED IN THE PRESENCE OF THE PARTY AGENTS AND A COPY OF THE RESULTS GIVEN TO THEM RIGHT THERE AT THE POLLING BOOTH.
    If the lawyers continue their present agitation politics, they will suffer and so will the nation.

Have Your Say (Bol, magar piyar say)