LONDON, Feb 2: Asma Jehangir, Secretary General of Human Rights Commission of Pakistan speaking at the London School, of Economics here on Saturday appealed to those who prefer by implication military rule in Pakistan to what they regard as the rule of ‘corrupt politicians’ to give the Pakistani politicians “a chance”.

Answering a question after her speech to a crowded gathering in one of the LSE halls, she said that most politicians in her country and especially the late Benazir Bhutto was socially and politically aware enough to know the problems facing Pakistan, “her failure was she did not have enough political space to tackle them properly because of the backbenchers in her party and also because of her willingness to listen to the advice of civil-military bureaucracy perhaps in the interest of national consensus”.

Ms Jehangir gave a detailed account of the atrocities perpetrated against the bar, bench, civil society and the media by the government after the imposition of emergency.

She said never before in any country, in any age had any government dismissed its Chief Justice along with about 60 judges in such a manner and incarcerated, “and most of them are still in house arrest”.

She said while things were going from bad to worse in her country there were chinks of light as well like the on going struggle of the lawyers and the civil society against military rule and in support of democracy.

She blamed the US and the West for the perpetuation of Musharraf’s rule.

She said the people of Pakistan were liberal and secular and were against religious extremism.

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