Every now and then, the natives get restless and start their war dance. We hear the echo of beating war drums and smoke signals rising in the hills, heralding an impending attack from angry warriors.

But soon, the Heavens intervene and gusty winds and lashing rains dissipate the burning fires and even the threat of a sweeping tsunami recedes and soon becomes an ebbing tide. The glorious sun emerges from behind the dark clouds, bathing us in warm sunlight and all is well again and it is business as usual for the corrupt and the incompetent.

And these dramatic events occur at regular intervals, on the call of the Hidden Hands and their Master Puppeteer, in order to implement their ‘behind the curtains’ agenda.

Due to the failure of past government, both civil and military, elections and democracy in Pakistan have become a farce, as the same corrupt and incompetent politicians are re-elected into government by an apathetic population. 

Seeing this, self appointed pseudo Quaids and self proclaimed leaders, barrage us about dishonest and crooked politicians in our government and the need for electoral reforms. They ask us to help them to disqualify the corrupt and throw them out of the parliament, in order to establish true democracy and a government that is of the people, by the people and for the people.

So no doubt, CHANGE is very much the need of the hour, but then, what should be the method to bring about this change, by introducing reforms in parliament, which is a Mission Impossible or through a ‘peaceful revolution’, which too is a Mission Impossible?

As such, the opposition leaders have realized that the only way to change things in the country is to destabilize the government through chaos and disorder, by using street power and launching a ‘peaceful revolution’ and this has now become a major tool in our politics.

But then, chaos and disorder, if not brought into immediate control, usually turns violent and can lead to anarchy, mayhem and loss of life and property, where the rule of law is replaced by the law of the jungle and streets are turned into battlefields. No revolution can be peaceful and without bloodshed, as revolutions inevitability end up in anarchy, which in due course, engulfs the entire country.

Those in government naturally shout FOUL when they hear talks of Dharnas and revolutions, because in reality we know that those in parliament will never allow electoral reforms to be introduced, as they would be committing Hara-kiri, by killing the duck that lays their golden eggs.

PTI and PAT have both realized that they will never be able to break the strangle hold that the old, established political parties have on politics in Pakistan, no matter what their track record and can never win the elections through the present election process in the country. The only way to win this coveted prize is through undemocratic ways, which in reality means to destabilize the government through protests and street power and to create chaos and disorder.

As such, Imran, in his desperate bid to be prime minister, believes that if mid-elections were held early, then he would win the elections. That is why he keeps insisting that the last elections were rigged and is challenging the PML-N’s right to rule.

While the fiery orator from Canada, Dr. T. Qadri is dreaming of playing a major political role in the land of the Pak and the Pure and is convinced that Pakistan is headed in the wrong direction and the only way to stop this, is for the army to take over and lead Pakistan on the right path. As such, he is challenging the PML-N on moral grounds and wants to create chaos in the country, in order to draw in the army.

Both Imran and Dr. Qadri have announced that they will launch their agitation campaign to challenge and remove the government, Imran, for rigging the last elections, and Dr. TQ, for the government’s failure to introduce electoral reforms and a just social order.

So it seems that instead of celebrating Independence Day with the usual ‘zeal and fervor’, parades and 21 gun salute, the citizens will be waiting, with abated breath, the coming of the promised revolution and tsunami, announced by both leaders.

And what we, as responsible, law abiding citizens, have to decide is, should we accept a weak, ineffective democracy, led by a corrupt and incompetent government or allow chaos and disorder to destabilize the government and force it to announce mid-term elections?

The choice of supporting a ‘peaceful revolution’ is not easy, but then, to change the destiny of a nation has never been easy and sooner or later, we will have to face the harsh reality, that past and present governments have betrayed us, failed to establish its writ and abused our trust in democracy, leaving us no choice.

However, the evil in our system lies in our weak, docile and pliable Election Commission, as pointed out by old friend, Col. Riaz Jaffry, states:  ‘Elections in Pakistan have always been controversial and not very fair. As such, the losing party always cries FOUL and accuses the government of rigging the results, as it is being done this time’.

‘Therefore, to ensure a free, fair and transparent election, the EC must be independent and effective in the true sense and the CEC must be selected by the Supreme Judicial Commission, comprising of CJP and CJs of the four High Courts’.

‘The CEC should then select the members and the secretary EC himself, who do not need to be necessarily judges or former judges. Returning Officers must also be appointed by the EC and appeals against the EC should be heard by the Supreme Court of Pakistan only’.

‘Lastly, there must not be ANY compromise on the enforcement of articles 62 and 63 and any parliamentarian found at any stage, even after he/she has finished the term, should be proceeded against, as per the law and punished severely if found guilty’.

The above suggestions certainly make a lot of sense and should be given serious consideration by the government, in order to cleanse our parliament and our system of governance, failing which we will continue to stumble from one election to another and the banner of ‘democracy’ will continue to be misused as an umbrella for the corrupt and dishonest to win the elections.  

The writer can be reached at trust@helplinetrust.org.pk