Lesson from Malaysia

WE in Pakistan are very fond of talking about the rule of law little knowing what it really means.

In order to understand the meaning of the term, it would help to recall an incident that took place in a country not too far from here.

A deputy inspector-general of the police informs the prime minister that he owes the state a specific amount in fines for traffic offences attributable to his car.

The prime minister checks up and pays the fine, from his pocket, not the state exchequer.

The country is Malaysia and the prime minister is Abdullah Ahmad Badawi.

Meanwhile, back home in Balochistan, the chief minister orders the suspension of a superintendent of police for upholding the law and stopping the personal bodyguards of a senior minister from entering the Balochistan Assembly premises, which was already under heavy guard.

In one instance a prime minister follows the law in letter and in spirit. In the other, an SP is suspended for upholding the law.

Now you know what the term rule of law means and why we are where we are.

FARID NAWAZ Former Inspector-General, Police

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Comments (4) Closed

Jul 28, 2013 09:38am

Is your hiring in police was based according to law or quota system. During your service did you ever break any law? Please answer truthfully.

Kazi Ashraf
Jul 28, 2013 12:26pm

Very well said...

Krish Chennai
Jul 28, 2013 01:47pm

Respected Farid Nawaz ji, Such traits are inborn to the individual, to follow rules, and one's conscience. My not be right on your part to generalise for an entire nation, based on the incidents that you recount, though it is obviously easy to do so.

Naeem Syed
Jul 28, 2013 04:39pm

Sir I bow to your courage for writing such a finger in your eye letter. Our Politicians are gang members who have no respect for the law. They are a miserable copies of the Sheriff of Nottingham from the Robin Hood saga. Thank you for standing up to honor an Honest fellow colleague.