The glimpses of democracy
There is much in common between India and Pakistan
PARALLELS BY G. N. WADOO
Memo Gate scandal created chaos by making the democratic setup of Pakistan susceptible. Chances of military coup were more had the Pakistan Army desired it. Military takeovers are nothing new in the political history of Pakistan because the country has developed militarily more than on the political grounds during the decades of its democratic failures.
The rule of Army Generals in Pakistan during the regimes of Field Marshal Ayoub Khan, General Zia-ul-Haq and General Pervaiz Musharaf from time to time and infact most of the time have deprived the people of Pakistan of democracy, political image and the constitutional supremacy. However, the Democratic Principles have become extinct in the schemes of other governments also. For instance, in Indian democracy we have recently observed a deviation by the presence of Chief of the Army Staff General V. K. Singh in the Apex Court of the country to plead his case of retirement vis-à-vis his date of birth certificate. This is perhaps for the first time in the history of India that the Chief of the Army may have presented himself before the court of law. In fact an Army Tribunal Court could have given the verdict in this favour. It appears that there is lack of harmony for the mutual understanding between the political leadership and the armed forces and that the role of army in civil administration is making it difficult for the political leadership to address the issues of the people of a particular country by pressing into service the vital organs of the government, administrative, legislative and judiciary which are committed for the welfare of the State. In the present political scenario, the role of army has been politicized and the role of politicians has been jeopardized which is not conducive to the democratic aspirations and the nation building. The people in a democratic state would by no means like to be brought under the clutches of armed forces and the draconian laws thereof. Nevertheless, armed forces have a very important and a respectable position in the country. Their services are meant only for defense of the country against foreign aggression and their role in politics is not justified because that creates a contentious atmosphere between the politicians and the armed forces beyond their jurisdiction makes it purposeless. Under various laws of armed forces like AFSPA etc. the life of the innocent people is endangered as is evident from the killings of many innocent people at Pathribal in the year 2000 and the justice thereupon is awaited since then. AFSPA has proved a bone of contention between the political leadership at the top brass of the country and the army has made the Act as the bedrock of its operations against militancy while on the other hand the J&K State Chief Minister is trying hard for its revocation, but the army is not in favour of it on the plea that its revocation is not in the national interest.
In fact revocation of AFSPA is in the national interest of India as the people of Kashmir are peace loving by nature and may win the hearts of people of Kashmir and with its revocation the innocent lives will be saved in future.
(G. N. Wadoo is retired official of Geology and Mining Department, J&K)
Lastupdate on : Mon, 30 Jan 2012 21:30:00 Makkah time
Lastupdate on : Mon, 30 Jan 2012 18:30:00 GMT
Lastupdate on : Tue, 31 Jan 2012 00:00:00 IST
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