It's a double whammy in India's neighbourhood: A mutiny in Bangladesh and a judicial coup in Pakistan. Pakistan's supreme court has upheld an order banning opposition leader Nawaz Sharif and his brother Shahbaz Sharif from elected office. Shahbaz is the chief minister of Punjab province while Nawaz may be his country's most popular politician.
Meanwhile, shots have rung out in Dhaka as paramilitary units of the Bangladesh Rifles (BDR) have revolted against their officers, with the top brass feared killed while other officers are being held hostage. The saving grace is that the Bangladeshi army has held loyal and surrounded the mutineers. Both Bangladesh and Pakistan are badly in need of political stability at the moment. These events, therefore, couldn't have come at a worse time.
It's possible that the mutiny in Bangladesh may be contained soon, as prime minister Hasina Wajed's government has offered an amnesty to the rebels and said that their demands, which revolve around pay and perks rather than any large political issue, will be met.
In Pakistan, however, confrontations are playing out along the country's main political fault lines which make them cause for greater worry. The opposition Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) has long backed the lawyers' movement calling for the reinstatement of judges sacked by former president Pervez Musharraf. But this has been resisted by the ruling Pakistan People's Party, one reason for which may be that President Asif Zardari fears that the sacked judges, if restored, may give harsh rulings in corruption cases against him.
The judgment by the current supreme court sets the cat among the pigeons as it prevents Nawaz from contesting elections and may force Shahbaz, head of a popularly elected government in Punjab, to step down from the chief ministership and resign from the provincial legislature. It's feared that this move will lead to widespread civil disobedience by opposition parties in Pakistan. It could be a rewind to the 1990s which witnessed ferocious infighting between Pakistan's mainstream political parties, which the military as well as Islamists can exploit. But with the Taliban making steady inroads and the Pakistani state ceding sovereignty in many areas, the situation's much worse now.
In Bangladesh, Wajed's landslide victory in recently concluded elections, after an interim phase of army rule, gave rise to hopes of political stability. We hope her government will be able to put a lid on the BDR mutiny and turn the corner on the country's violent past. But India needs to remain on guard while watching closely the developments in its neighbourhood.
Source: http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/Editorial/ 25 Feb 2009
Qazi, Imran term SC decision unacceptable
اس کے علاوہ مظاہرین نے لیاقت باغ کے باہر پاکستان پیلز پارٹی کی چیئرپرسن بینظیر بھٹو کی ہلاکت کے مقام پر بنائی جانے والی یادگار کو بھی نقصان پہنچایا۔Source: http://www.bbc.co.uk/urdu/pakistan/story/2009/02/090225_punjab_reshuffle_shehzad.shtml
ISLAMABAD: Jamaat-e-Islami chief, Qazi Hussain Ahmad has said that his party (JI) neither accepted the present Supreme Court nor its decision.
Talking to a private TV channel here on Wednesday, Qazi said that the decision of Supreme Court regarding the Sharifs’ brothers’ eligibility case proved that their participation in the general elections of 2008 was wrong.
The present Supreme Court is fake court of Pervez Musharraf and his party would continue struggle for the restoration of deposed judges.
He said these courts are unconstitutional, now the Shriff brothers have only one way to protest that is to join Lawyers movement and restore the constitution.
Meanwhile Chief of Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaff, Imran Khan has said that the decision of Supreme Court regarding the Sharifs brothers’ eligibility case was a political decision.
Talking to a private TV channel, he said that the present government liked the Musharraf judges and such decision was expected from them.
"US and Zardari do not want free judiciary and fair decisions", he remarked.
He said Nawaz Sharif should not have taken part in the general elections of 2008.
A page from recent history: Nawaz Sharif's Lwyers see light (noor) on the faces of judges
Some relevant comments:
Shaheed Benazir memorial in Rawalpindi destroyed by goonda of PML-N (50 goondas), JI (5 jihadis) and PTI (1 suicide bomber from FATA). Sharam karo bayghairato. Two used tyres were fatally hurt. Jihadi alliance revived.
I don’t understand what’s wrong with disqualifing NS/SS. Didn’t NS treated Zardari worst? I think NS needs more trainings like this to get mature. Disqualifing NS/SS is a storm in a tea cup. There won’t be much impact on the streets of Paksitan as PML(N) never organized their root structure. Though, the had the whole year after elections.
In my view NS / SS wanted to be disqualified. I won’t be surprised if NS/SS, along with Imran and Qazi, are even arrested before the long march. Isn’t this what the mature politicians do? Have the Lawyers do the dirty work of getting beaten up.
NS and SS are playing their cards very well. It’s poor Zardari in hot waters, who has to answer for every problem in Pakistan. For all you guys bashing Zardari and PPP, I will advise you … take it easy, Sharif brothers will be back after every thing comes back to Normal. Sharif brothers are simply businessmen adn they know the monetry worth of every situation.
Can’t argue with the decision, given that the Sharifs were involved in the hijacking of an airliner carrying many people, not just the COAS. That’s over a hundred counts of attempted murder right there. In a fair country, Sharif would be celebrating that he’s not in jail.
But at the same time, ALL OTHER politicians should also be held accountable. It is unfortunate that those with a stronger hold on power get away with their crimes. The same rules should apply to all.
Ajmal Khan said:
If Iftikhar Chudhry is hero although he also became CJ through the PCO of Musharraf ( I am against both Ifthikhar Ch and Doggar) then why they call Doggar as illegal. And again if the reconciliation with the Taliban is wellcomed although they donot accept the constitution of this country, call democracy as Kufr, have bloods of innocent people on their hands, human rights violation is their habit. I am surprised why there is a no for National reconciliation with those who were targetted by political revenge and least are not killers, anti-democracy, anti-human rights.
I donot support this decision but what NS did with Sajjad Ali shah that he is becoming a hero today. He likes the judge who favours him but is against those who donot give dicisions according to their wishes.