Sometimes it feels as if the former C-in-C and President of Pakistan will be punished without hearing his story, by a judiciary and party in power, allegedly seeking revenge. I believe Pervez Musharraf, who is being charged for treason, must be viewed in the light of the circumstances in which he toppled the democratically elected government. How dire were the conditions and what a reasonable man should have done to remedy them? After all he was not the first one to violate the constitution and impose military rule, while others before him, guilty of the same crime, were buried with honour.

If we investigate the circumstances at the time, our country was sliding down financially to the point where, PM Nawaz Sharif, had publically stated that Pakistan was unable to meet its international financial obligations. World Bank duly noted the possibility and told USA that if Pakistan goes belly up, it may have a domino effect and global financial markets may lose trillions of dollars. American investors and economy would be the biggest losers. It was, thus, USA’s pressure on Pakistan army to take over the helm of affairs at any cost, and not to declare bankruptcy. In return Pakistan would receive five year’s reprieve from repayments of debt as well as some financial relief to meet its urgent foreign exchange obligations. US allies agreed to cooperate.

Rest is history. The question the nation should be asking is did Pervez Musharraf do the right thing by taking over the power or if he had the choice of rejecting the pressure and had let Pakistan face the consequences? Unfortunately, our government was caught napping, and is totally oblivious of what was going on. The drama in the air just precipitated the inevitable. The nation is requested to keep an open mind and ask questions such as is the present PML-N travelling the same road with exaggerated loans taken from IMF, Saudi Arabia and now the bonds that have been floated? I hope we don’t land in the same mess that PML-N created in the past.


New York, April 10.