By Mushtaq Ahmad
Mr. Justice Shaukat Siddiqui, a judge of Islamabad High Court, made a staggering observation that Islamabad Police had miserably failed to accomplish its duties as 90% of its personnel were involved in running hubs of alcohol, whiskies, narcotics, and dens of social crimes and other immoral activities in the federal capital of Pakistan, adding that liquors and drugs were found in the rooms of the police inspectors. Not only that but also, the police inspectors look like rascals who wear costly silky clothes (boski) and ringlets around their necks. Apparent exposure of the primary law enforcers in Islamabad is of rogues and pranksters (tumashbeen). The honorable high court judge continued to send a powerful wave of immense shock to the people present in the court, saying that the rooms adjacent to the offices of the police officers were the places for sexual indulgence, lust and sedation. He was refereeing to the letter by the lady police officer to the chief Justices of Supreme Court and Islamabad High Pakistan, the Interior Minister and other high official in Islamabad.
Aforesaid grim attribution to the overall environment dominating the prime law enforcing agency in civil structure of power is nothing but an indicative of the rapid decline of the administration controlled by the public representatives who usually come into power after pledges for rule of law, justice and respect of humanity.
In global perspective, a capital of every nation state represents comparatively a better image of the nation as it houses foreign diplomats, missions, embassies and delegates; naturally having an epic center of power such as parliament, apex court and central government comprising of federal cabinet headed by a prime minister and president of the state itself. If a capital of a state seems to be in the hands of rogues and rascals; how can the far flung areas of the republic be the places of nicety, polity and civic morality? Despite these compelling requirements, Islamabad continues to expand as a disoriented abode of our modern world. Rule of law is gradually disappearing from the minds of those who administer the capital city.
From evident lawlessness, the bureaucrats, politicians, property tycoons, the managers of the religious outlets in hand with the market controllers come forward to enter into a tacit contract for personal gains at the cost of justice and fairness. Nutshell of this unholy alliance is that our ideological city–Islamabad–has now become a fast expanding center of trespassers, violators, illegal occupants and honorable dacoits.
Huge conveys comprising of armed men in symbolic uniform of authority and competence generally look fast moving on the busy roads of Islamabad. In the center of the convey is extremely precious vehicle carrying the proclaimed offender against whose name there are multiple FIRs of heinous crimes including murders for land grabbing.
Though, the display of all kind of weapons in Islamabad is prohibited, yet certain favored people enjoy immunity before the law of the land. Instead, the licensed private gourds displaying the lethal weapons are allowed to them for so-called self-defense. Ironically, self-defenders are those have deprived the hapless multitudes of their right of life and property.
In presence of such a depressing scenario, Islamabad Police is not only the silent spectator but also the beneficiary of total collapse of governance. Shockingly enough, IGP, and the Deputy Commissioner, Islamabad Capital Territory (ICT) look very happy to inaugurate functions of cooperative housing societies the administrative committee of which runs the affairs, dictatorially.
Another cause of immense shock is that the police chief’s office mostly remains occupied by the property dealers whose sleeves carry stains of human blood. This is what Islamabad Police today reflects.
Islamabad is a tiny district of federal capital, enjoying a status of a province. Unlike other districts of Pakistan wherein a District Police Officer (DPO) commands the huge areas spreading over outreaches under the influence of outlaws. In the Province of Punjab, the IGP governs 90 million people while in Islamabad the IGP enjoys his authority just over 2 million population. Still, the story of performance of the latter is extremely deplorable. Shortly after a rebellion turn conventional Muslim Leaguer from Rawalpindi Ch. Nasir Ali took the charge of federal minister for interior in 2013, the Senate of Pakistan was told that nearly 5500 out of 10000 police personnel were found involved in criminal activities including misuse of power, violations of human rights, financial irregularities and immorality and wickedness. One of the English daily filed an investigative story, aptly provoking the all-time press conscious Ch. Nasir Ali Khan to react. Though, the story was based on the reply Ch. Nasir Ali Khan as Interior Minister himself had given to the Senate question, yet he responded the news with the promise to take drastic action against all those found involved in any violation of law in the Islamabad Police, which was published in prominent place the next day.
Since then, there prevailed a total black out. To the Interior Minister, Karachi looked more important than Islamabad, on one hand, and on the other hand, Ch. Nasir Ali staged undeclared boycott of the Upper House wherein the PPP enjoyed majority. The PPP Chairman Senate of Pakistan Syed Nayyar Hussain Bukhari looked least interested to compel the Interior Minister to attend the House under Rules of Procedures and Conduct of the Business in the Senate while the Standing Committee on Interior in the Senate continued to hold the meetings without attendance of the concerned minister. Consequences of disregard of parliament were terrible, encouraging the criminal minded state functionaries to transact the commerce of state at their personal gains. At the beginning of Ch. Nasir Ali Khan’s tenure, a little above 50% of Islamabad Police was corrupt and criminal but the end of ministerial tenure made yet another addition of 40% in the same category reaching 90% in totality. Honestly speaking, it was total failure on the part of the opposition in the parliament to hold the government officials accountable to the parliament under constitution of Pakistan and statutory laws. The opposition and the government both preferred to wage political war on print and electronic media, leaving the core issues of governance to grow serious and threatening, too. Now the situation has grown precarious to such an extent that everything ‘is rotten in the state of Denmark”, as Shakespeare tells.
To certain groups in political class in particular and society in general, it may be a great cause of ease and comfort to see the judges of higher judiciary and Supreme Court of Pakistan exposing the glaring weaknesses of the elected government. In the political game of favor and disfavor, some political groups and parties may win and some may lose the coming Elections-2018, but the naked truth would emerge that our parliamentary system has failed to deliver, awfully. Misfortune would befallen on the shoulders of all stakeholders of democratic system. Verily, the best place to fight for the people is the parliament, not the public gatherings or media, particularly TV shows. Majority of the parliamentarians demonstrating as advocates of the public grievances and hardship in the TV talks show entire passivity at the floors of both of houses. Had they delivered something valuable in the parliament, at least a little district of Islamabad might have been an ideal one in Pakistan. It is, though, a bitter fact that Islamabad Administration has developed virtual decline under the command of democrats and the public representatives in public offices. Even in 1980s, Islamabad Administration was more responsible than that of todays.
Briefly, our parliamentarians should take Mr. Justice Shaukat Siddiqui’s judicial remarks as a wake-up call. The sleepers must awake, now. The republic of Pakistan, a fifth largest democracy in world is really facing a serious challenge of its peaceful, stable and genuine survival, which is, of course, stemming from its heart–Islamabad.
(The writer is EX-Director General (Translation), Senate of Pakistan)
By Mushtaq Ahmad