Sidhra Chaudhry Floods, poverty, bomb blasts, army operations, power and gas shortages, drone attacks and a nation whose name ranks among the most corrupt countries in the world: Is this what Quaid-i-Azam Muhammad Ali Jinnah had envisioned for Pakistan? No. It was created to provide equality and good living standards to its citizens, which does not seem to exist in todays Pakistan. A "cut-throat business" more aptly describes the current scenario. The political parties have been battling against one another for power, and as a result thousands of people have lost their lives. For example, the target killings and unrest in the port city of Karachi has instilled fear among the people. Problems in Pakistan are constantly on the rise; regrettably, before the old ones are dealt with, new ones emerge. Relations between the provinces has changed and seemingly worsened with the passage of time. We are all Pakistanis; there is no need to create differences on the basis of caste, creed, language, religion or provinces - Sindhi, Balochi, Punjabi or Pathan. We all hope for the betterment of Pakistan, as we represent the nation together and not by province; the people need to unite for the country. Pakistan has been facing many challenges since its birth in 1947, yet it has managed to survive and not fall apart as desired by its enemies. This proves that we still have a good chance to highlight our drawbacks, correct our course, and save this country from total collapse. Jinnah once stated: "That freedom can never be attained by a nation without suffering and sacrifice has been amply borne out by the recent tragic happenings in this subcontinent." Through the hardships Pakistan has lived, it will emerge stronger than ever before. A large number of people are waiting impatiently for the next general election. A positive change is direly needed, a helping hand to guide Pakistan and its people. Everyday, a political figure would make a commitment to bring change. But unfortunately, the end result is the same - inflation, poverty, unemployment, loadshedding, misrule, corruption, terrorism and lawlessness making the lives of people miserable. It is time for us to not only open our eyes, but also our minds for we have to make the right choice in the 2013 elections. History has proved that Pakistan is a strong nation, and when the people unite they are ready to face any challenge, whether internal or external; at that moment, Pakistanis represent their country and not their province. As the Quaid said: "Organise the people economically, socially, educationally and politically, and I am sure that you will be a power that will be accepted by everybody." For this to happen, a system of checks and balances is needed in Pakistan to keep the leaders on the right path. The youth of today are emerging stronger than before and have vowed to bring change. Above all, we need an honest and strong leader to run the affairs of the State. So, it is up to the citizens to select the right candidate in the elections. Pakistan has existed for 64 years, and could have progressed like India. Anyhow, the problems faced by the country are not impossible to overcome. A blessed nation it truly is, with wealthy businessmen and industrialists, good artisans, farmers, a strong army, and an emerging youth, which has the potential to bring about a real change in the country. With their collective effort, Pakistan, indeed, will become a successful country. The writer is a freelance columnist. Email: media@skm.org.pk