In Pakistan, a long awaited change is in place now. It is a nascent stage of the change. It will take a lot of time to see how the change is materialised. During the process of its materialisation, there can be several hurdles in the way. At the very beginning, the political elite have diverse opinions regarding the placement of the change. All the opposition parties consider it planted and engineered change while the parties in power or collation partners take it as hard-earned victory. They are considering it the success of Imran’s narrative against corruption and status quo.

Both the arguments are debatable because of few pertinent reasons. The narrative of Imran and PTI promulgated to win general elections 2018 is a progressive narrative in nature but no progressive party is buying Imran’s narrative. All the political parties are on the right side of the history keeping in view the narrative of Imran and PTI. Though the opposition parties are trying to prove themselves as progressive parties by opting for an anti-establishment narrative, yet it is not enough to be called progressive. It seems their claim against establishment is a failsafe. Therefore, they, all the political entities, are calling it an implantation of the plot to oust those who are against establishment.

To note, all the political entities that are in opposition now, were in power since 2008. The question arises what have they done what they are demanding and sloganeering in the public now? The answer to this question is in negative. I don’t see any important development or legislation except the abolition of the FCR.

Being a simpleton Pakistani, I think, in the previous decade military and establishment got strengthened by the so called liberal forces to the greater extent. Instead of shedding crocodile tears, they should have resisted, which they could but didn’t. They wrapped the strength and handed over to the military and establishment willingly by the so-called democratic and progressive leader in making. The day when the military was empowered by the civilian government was the blackest day in the history of democracy. It was a clear defeat of civilian government and its institutions. They legislated and introduced a National Action Plan. Why didn’t they empower the civilian courts? Why didn’t they provide the security to civilian judges? Instead of taking a right step, they escaped from responsibility. They took a safe exit by shifting their responsibility to military. The military doesn’t interfere. It’s the civilian who ask military to interfere.

Now every Pakistani is looking forward to see the real change. Like all other compatriots, I also look forward what changes the present government introduces particularly in education. Because the narrative they used to grab votes from the masses will be materialised through education. Education would be a key to put the change on its way. The public does know that the change is not an overnight task. The present government will not turn the table in a night. Everyone knows that it will take time but what the public expects are ‘measures’. Everyone is interested in steps and measures. I would also like to see the measures taken by the present government.

Education provides the foundation to make a society civilised. Unfortunately, education has not been a priority of all former governments. No serious steps were taken to improve the plight of education in Pakistan. Only the cosmetic changes were made in the past. They befooled the public in the name of educational reforms in ICT. Now everyone is expecting revolutionary changes in the field.

What the present government can do to improve the quality of education in the country? First of all the present government should focus on the plight of the teacher. A teacher is the biggest stake holder in education but he is equally ignored despite his importance. Whether the present government is going to make the teacher independent or not? In Pakistan, teaching community is the only community which is least paid. A teacher is not independent economically. He, all the time, remains in the pursuit of economic affairs. He must be freed from economic tensions. Secondly, the business of academies may be shut down because academies have commercialised education. The students are losing their thinking and creative capabilities because they have no time to ponder and think. All the time, they are burdened with the homework and tests. They are cramming all the time for exams and tests. Third, the use of key books must be discouraged. Key books do not let the students think because these key books provide prepaid solutions to the problems. Last but not the least, there are no recreational opportunities for the students. The students have no exposure of their surroundings. They must be provided recreational opportunities so that they can broaden their vision.

 

The writer is a PHD scholar.