It shocks citizens of Pakistan, for whom this country is their motherland that our leaders consider following Dubai as a role model, a Gulf state with over 85 percent of population comprising of expatriates. From a small desert, popular with smugglers, it has surely developed into a trade and leisure centre for the filthy rich of South East Asia, and a tourist resort for many Europeans with its beaches, nightclubs, hotels, shopping malls, casinos and night life. It is also very popular with the Third World’s corrupt politicians, tin pot dictators, bureaucrats and even some notorious members of the underworld, because it offers them a tax free environment, where no questions are asked from expatriates who transfer billions.

No doubt Dubai is relatively a crime free police controlled city, where politics is banned and law enforcement has no tolerance for those who violate laws of sheikdom. Yet it is no model for a country with a population of over 180 million strong, which was created through a constitutional political struggle waged by educated leaders with vision, intellect, integrity and goals for creating a modern democratic welfare state, whose people would have equal opportunities, justice and freedom of expression, freedom to practice their faiths and beliefs, as long as they do not violate rights of others.

If anything, we need to emulate the development of countries like UK, Germany, Japan, Singapore etc, who have developed their ingenious human resources, instead of relying upon expatriates. These are countries with documented economies, employing their best and most qualified talent for running affairs of state, with strict auditing of state funds and zero tolerance for tax defaulters. They utilized state funds for developing internationally acclaimed universities for research and development and improved the infra structure for development of human resources and boosting documented economy. Islamic countries like Malaysia, Turkey etc are following role models of these countries.

MALIK TARIQ ALI,

Lahore, September 27.