Senate Chairman, Mian Raza Rabbani, has floated an idea of initiating dialogue among state institutions including military establishment regarding their allotted constitutional rules. It is certainly a commendable idea keeping in view the recent political uncertainty and the harsh criticism of the state institutions they have come under. 

The constitution of Pakistan is much clear regarding the roles of all organs of the state i.e Parliament, judiciary, executive and military. The important state origin that has always occupied the front line in the state affairs and on which the constitution is silent is military. The country has been under the dictatorships for almost half of its existence in spite of the clear instruction in constitution that the civilian supremacy will prevail. The judiciary too often cross its limits, or often remained too reserved in exercising its powers. The most important factor in this sorry state of affairs is the inability of our parliament to exercise its power. The self-centrist approach of the political parties in Pakistan has made the parliament much weak.  

They often join hands with military establishment or resort to extra-constitutional means to settle their political scores. Moreover, they have discredited the parliament by bringing the important decisions concerning the country outside the parliament. Be it foreign policy or internal matters, the nation is kept ignorant of all the key issues. All-party conferences, party meetings are preferred over the parliamentary debates. The absence of prime minister and the leaders of opposition parties from the parliamentary proceedings can best describe their lack of respect to this esteemed institution. 

Pakistan has to walk a large distance to make this state of affairs corrected. The politicians should give the parliament its due respect by themselves and made it supreme in true sense. The other state institutions should also ensure that they operating within the ambit of law and constitution. The proposed dialogue will only bear fruits when all the states institutions accept the supremacy of constitution. 


Peshawar, August 12.