ON Nov 1, 1998, I (an elected MNA) took the oath without putting my hand on our Holy Book. After the oath-taking ceremony, a colleague approached me (a big landlord) and said and I quote:

“Kazmi Sahib! You are a very renowned senior civil engineer of the country. You should carry out your professional work but why did you come to the NA?”

I was shocked and sad since the majority in the house consisted of big landlords, industrialists, and retired bureaucrats but not technocrats like doctors, chartered accountants, engineers, nuclear scientists, as is the case in developed countries.

At least cabinet members and the president should have been technocrats. Here all politics is dominated by landlords who take care only of their own interests and not those of the masses since they are not knowledgeable about economics and development and planning.

The profession ‘politician’ in Pakistan is based on lineage. Thus Pakistan has been unlucky from day one in this respect till date. We will not attain the status of a welfare state if the present trend is not reversed. We need a government run by technocrats. Look, no landlord pays income tax on agricultural income above the required slab.

ENGR S. M ZAKERYA KAZMI
Karachi

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