According to Aristotle, democracy is rooted in the thought that if people are equal in any respect, they are equal in all respects. Lincoln’s concept of the “government of the people, by the people, for the people” seems in line with Aristotle’s notion. Similarly, Edmund Burk maintained that a government is the contrivance of human wisdom to provide for human wants. In all developed and civilised countries of the world, democracy grows from the lowest level and rises to the top. Unfortunately, our democracy conflicts with these principles. In our democracy, rather than rising from below to top, it flows down from top to bottom. Money plays a major role. Anyone with enough money to throw around can form a party declaring himself as the president or chairperson and nominate his / her loyalists to fill the party positions. As a result, the party remain loyal to the person, not people. Having no roots in people, our democratic parties are seldom concerned about the wishes and issues of people. They are almost always focused on their own interests and grip on power. Both PPP and PML-N ruled the country as government and opposition from 2008 to 2018, while PTI strongly agitated against irregularities in the elections during this time. These parties did achieve some success in constructing road infrastructure (PML-N) and inserting constitutional amendments (PPP), but failed on many other counts, such as health, education, economy and others. After 2018 polls, PTI assumed power in the centre and provinces except for Sindh. It has completed 9 months but could not manage the crippling impact of its predecessor governments on the economy. It is struggling to bring reforms in all government sectors, but its opposition has lost patience and intend to agitate against inflation – the result of our own past misdemeanours in earning and spending. Only chanting slogans to protect democracy without following its norms is nothing but a mockery of the democratic system.

RAJA SHAFAATULLAH,

Islamabad, May 8.