Connivance of political elite, establishment blamed for exploitation of citizens

Published May 22, 2022
Progressive writer Raja Anwar speaks at an event organised at the National Press Club on Saturday. Senators Pervaiz Rasheed and Tahir Bizenjo are also seen. — Photo by Tanveer Shahzad
Progressive writer Raja Anwar speaks at an event organised at the National Press Club on Saturday. Senators Pervaiz Rasheed and Tahir Bizenjo are also seen. — Photo by Tanveer Shahzad

ISLAMABAD: Speakers at an event on Saturday criticised connivance of the political elite and the establishment for the continued exploitation of citizens, and called for a change to the system instead of faces.

The speakers said the country was faced with the current state of politics and the economy due to lack of the concepts of welfare and humanity in the ruling structure.

The event was arranged by the Islamabad chapter of National Party at the National Press Club in honour of Raja Anwar, a veteran progressive writer and leader of the student movement.

The speakers belonging to various walks of life criticised alleged interference of state institutions in political affairs as a result of which non-genuine leaderships had emerged in the political arena.

Chief guest on the occasion was former senator and a Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) member Pervaiz Rasheed, whose name is mentioned in all the eight books written by Raja Anwar.

Speaking on the occasion, Mr Rasheed expressed dismay that the whole Pakistani nation had distanced itself from reading and books spreading distorted version of facts were widespread.

He said as a nation Pakistanis were more interested to know about the life hereafter instead of learning about the responsibilities in this world.

Without naming any institution, he slammed the “establishment” saying: “The genuine and real political workers are hit hard by them. But the current politicians who only know how to use abusive language are not even held accountable.”

He said abusive speeches were even shown on TV whereas there were restrictions on those who speak for the masses like former prime minister Nawaz Sharif.

“Are we the children of lesser gods. No, the reason is we seek shift of power from the hands of a few state institutions to the masses.”

Mr Rasheed said he and those who were aspiring for the power to the people would not be silenced.

Speaking on the occasion, Raja Anwar said the current state of Pakistan was clear to everybody and to put it on the right track a mass movement was essential. But that does not mean holding huge gatherings but imparting of political sense among the people.

“Most of the huge political gatherings result in change of face in the country but that has not led to the change either in the economic condition of general public or improvement in granting rights to the citizens,” he added.

Senator Tahir Bizenjo said the official policy to declare those who speak for the rights as anti-state, enemy of the nation or foreign agents should end.

Those who also spoke on the occasion included Nawaz Khan Naji, member of the Gilgit-Baltistan Legislative Assembly, Azhar Saleem Babar, former chief justice AJK, Nasir Zaidi, PFUJ secretary general, and Ayub Malik, president National Party, Punjab.

Published in Dawn, May 22nd, 2022

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