Quaid stressed upon importance of constitution, on which foundations of modern democratic welfare state he visualized could be built. While we celebrate 71stIndependence Day, few driven by greed and ambition, continue to defy Father of Nation by indulging in this debate of saving State at cost of constitution. In this process, Pakistan suffered humiliation of surrender in 1971, got engulfed in scourge of terrorism because of visionless military junta led by Zia who got us involved in proxy war in Afghanistan.
It is an established norm since medieval times that for any state to survive it alone must have monopoly over use of force, yet Zia allowed private militias to be formed and thenceforth our sovereignty stands compromised with hundreds of thousands killed.
While addressing First Constituent Assembly upon being elected as its President, with Maulvi Tamizuddin as VP on 11 August 1947, Quaid stated that “The first(duty) is the very onerous and responsible task of framing our future constitution of Pakistan and the second of functioning as a full and complete Sovereign body as the Federal Legislature of Pakistan”.
Unfortunately sequence of events that followed, witnessed adoption of Objectives Resolution on 12 March 1949, a year after Quaid’s death and when constitution was almost complete, dismissal of First Constituent Assembly on 24 October 1954. It was no coincidence that Ayub Khan in uniform took over as Defense Minister on 25 October 1954 in Bogra cabinet, in contravention of MAJ’s declaration that armed forces had no such political role. This was followed by handpicked Constituent Assembly, excluding Maulvi Tamizuddin on May 28, 1955, which promulgated 1956 Constitution on 23 March 1956, giving parity to East and West Pakistan, depriving former of legitimate democratic majority, leading to dismemberment.
MALIK TARIQ ALI,
Lahore, August 11.