At a time when Pakistan is facing its toughest challenge in the shape of war against militancy and terrorism, there are political elements that appear hell bent (for want of a better phrase) to ‘put a spanner’ in the proceedings. First it was the Punjab Government’s favorite and a kin of the former Chief Justice, who created conditions leading to senseless bloodshed of innocent people and acute embarrassment to the PML-N. Next, it was the turn of Dr. Tahirul Qadri to announce his ‘revolution,’ spiced with the usual rhetoric. Mercifully however, Doctor Sahib has deferred whatever revolution he wants to bring about, till the end of the ongoing military operation. Now, it is the Chairman of the Pakistan Tehrik-e-Insaaf, who has got it into his head to take a million people to Islamabad and engulf the Federal Capital with his ‘tsunami’.

Controversy has arisen with regards to the appointment of a former Chief Justice’s son to an important post in Balochistan. Earlier, this gentleman and his illustrious father had made headlines because of allegations involving some sponsored foreign trips and shopping sprees. If this would have been a country other than Pakistan, ‘dad’ would have resigned, but such things do not happen in the ‘Land of the Pure’. Nonetheless, observers are terming this particular appointment as proof of what was perhaps a mutually beneficial nexus between the Ruling Party and the former Head of the Apex Judiciary.

Gullu Butt became an overnight celebrity as images of him leading the police charge (Sultan Rahi style) flashed on television screens across the country. In more footage, this person was seen looting cold drinks from a nearby shop and distributing them shamelessly to the Punjab Police, who with even more shamelessness, were seen drinking them all. In another sequence, one of these policemen was observed tucking a looted bottle inside his uniform shirt. Television footage of the Lahore incident should have been enough to prosecute those members of the Lahore police force responsible for killing innocent citizens (including two women) and acting as willing collaborators in looting shops. It must be remembered that in advanced societies, looters are apt to be shot by the police, but what happens when the police itself become an accessory to this crime? It is a regretful fact that our law enforcement system is riddled with numerous Gullu Butts, who provide ready services to their benefactors. It is time that someone wipes the dust from the police reforms study (if this document can be located from the pile moldering in some back room), prepared by an illustrious Deputy Inspector General and named after him as the Abbas Report to be implemented in letter and spirit.

If reports are to be believed, then the Islamabad – Rawalpindi Metro Project has run into unplanned glitches. It is being said that delays are plaguing timelines as excavations along the route require massive shifting and realigning of utility cables and pipes. This was something that was either not catered for or underestimated when planning the project. Having resigned to seeing the once beautiful Jinnah Avenue dug up, one is now hearing news that the metro bus lanes will not be fringed with a steel barrier, but with an alternative aesthetically acceptable solution.

Mercifully, a decision has been taken to allow only one person to see off or receive passengers at airports. Though unpopular with the general public, to which the arrival and departure of even a distant relative is incomplete without the presence of the whole clan in front of the arrival and departure areas, the ‘one person’ decision will go a long way in reducing security concerns and ensuring the smooth arrival and departure of passengers.

 The writer is a freelance columnist.