Elections are a formal and organized process usually free and fair, of electing an eligible political leadership to lead and rule a country. In this process the majority chooses a leadership to represent democracy with legislation, justice and co-operation with its public. This is the first government in Pakistan’s history to complete its tenure of five years. So, elections are expected to be held after March 16, 2013, within 90-days after discharging of the current rule, as per constitution and till then, a caretaker government will be formed for the meanwhile until the formation of the new government.

According to the law and order situation in the country, people are confused whether there are going to be any elections or not. It is very important that these elections take place whatever the odds and challenges. Let us look back at the last five years and what has happened in this much coveted democracy, which everyone preaches is better than dictatorship. Let’s first consider the economic aspect, the economic growth rate of the country, in comparison to martial laws is very disappointing. The statistics show that inflation has increased 100 percent in the last five years, terrorism has caused anarchy; hence collapse of law and order has created a sense of despondency and chaos in the country. Terrorism has broken the boundaries of all civilized rules. This growing lawlessness is threatening the safety of virtually everyone.

The scourge of terrorism has broken the back of our giant cosmopolitan city of Karachi where there is no respect for law and order anymore. It has been a hostage to three political parties; MQM, PPP and ANP, who claim to be the champions of the area by fighting for the control and killing their opponents. We hear daily about extortion and target-killing. Karachi is the biggest, financial capital and the only working port Pakistan has and if my statistics are not wrong, then one day of strike in Karachi equals to loss of millions of rupees. Even in Balochistan, kidnapping for ransom is sponsored by their provincial members and politicians.

The political parties here are the fiefdoms of some certain families like PPP, which claim to be the biggest political party of Pakistan. it is actually a family party of the Bhutto clan while no true descendant is in the limelight. Where are Mir Murtaza’s children? PML-N belongs to the Sharif’s and PML-Q to Chaudhary brothers. All these political parties are preparing their heirs as successors like Bilawal Bhutto Zardari, Hamza Shabaz, Moonis Elahi.

Democracy means government of the people, by the people and for the people. But in our country’s democratic rule, the Chief Minister of Punjab Shahbaz Sharif has all the powers in his own hand which is not democracy. Democracy is power on all leve4ls not in one hand at the top. Here, I would also like give the example of bad apples that PPP collects such as Jamshed Dasti, an MNA, who was thrown out of the parliament because of fake degrees but was re-elected by PPP and came back in the government.

I believe that democracy is only viable in a country where there is hundred percent education, as education gives one the vision and the sight to check and balance the candidates. So if the country is facing such horrific problems it is due to the feudal lords misusing the dependent masses. In the light of all the problems given above, we need to reevaluate the situation and see can we bear the burden of another corrupt democratic rule for five more years, which only fleeces the nation of all its wealth and leaves everyone poor? Is this really democracy practiced in our country? Is the democracy in Pakistan following the laws? Does the present democratic system provide us with the solution to our problems? In short, do we have and want such leaders again to rule us for the next five years?

SADAF SAEED,

Lahore, December 30.