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Democracy’s great fall

27 7 47

The writer is an Islamabad-based TV journalist and tweets @FarrukhKPitafi

Now you see elections. Now you don’t. Listen to key stakeholders, the caretakers, chief election commissioner, chief justice, even the army chief and you come across the assurances that the elections will be held on time. Switch on your television and listen to televangelist-turned-political pundits and you come across 1,001 reasons why elections must be delayed. As a citizen my reaction? I couldn’t care less.

We have seen dictators ruling this country. We have seen politicians ruling this country. But we remain where we were. In suspended animation. While advocating this political system or that, we forget that all rulers come from the very same society. If there is something wrong with the society, how can you expect that flaw not to manifest itself in your leadership? You can convince yourself that this leader is better than that but when you look closely you find out the difference that you admire so much essentially remains only marginal at best. It is in the nature of man to mistake mirage for oasis, to drink sand instead of water and not to even know the difference.

Not convinced? Let us talk about the two decades of the country’s history that I have closely observed as a journalist. Can you name one big national accomplishment in the past 20 years? Exactly, 20. Nuclear detonation in May 1998 doesn’t count. Economic revival? No. Major industrialisation? No. Emergence of globally-competitive educational institutions? No. Space exploration? Nil. Number of commercialised patents? Next to nil. Any important architectural accomplishments? Where? Any........

© The Express Tribune