The current Prime Minister (PM) of Pakistan has emphasized the importance of following the constitution of the Islamic Republic of Pakistan. There are over twenty clauses in the unanimously agreed document that covers human rights but fortunately, there is no mention of the involvement of ‘Gullu Butts’ of Gawalmandi in the document. Now that Rana Sanaullah is the Interior Minister who relies on these ‘Goons’ for maintenance of law and order, it is pertinent to introduce a special clause allowing the use of ‘Private Malatia’s’ to spread terror amongst peaceful protestors. Right under the nose of the Punjab Police, these ‘Bandits’ smashed screens of both moving and parked automobiles during the recent peaceful march.
Then the arrested lawyers were harassed as they were being transferred into the Police van. Police in plain clothes scaled the walls of private homes and smashed their doors to arrest without warrants the potential violators of Section 144 under the Colonial era/ pre constitution era laws like MPO (Maintenance of Public Order).
The act was enacted in 1960 by the first dictator to quell dissent and peaceful protests
The subservient and loyal ‘Sharif Bureaucracy’ of Punjab continues to rely on these outdated ancient doctrines. I remember during my stint as Chairman of Pakistan Science Foundation (2002 to 2005), I had to charge sheet a rogue employee. To avoid inquiry, he got himself transferred to the PM Secretariat across the road on Constitution Avenue.
I wrote to the Ministry to absorb him there permanently as he had latent skills needed by the PM. The Secretary Ministry of Science and Technology wrote back saying that an act was passed in 1971 at the peak of the civil war in East Pakistan under which special powers were given to the PM to transfer any government employee. Not convinced I called the ‘Baboo’ who later on became an important part of the ‘ Sharif Team ‘ of loyalists to let him know that after the promulgation of the 1973 constitution we were only required to follow it but he did not agree.
As the Sharif’s of Gawalmandi were born in the laps of the third military dictator Zia-ul-Haq who had disdain for the constitution and the civil liberties it ensured. He tried his best to disfigure the agreed document by inserting clauses that suited him. He openly said that Constitution is a piece of paper that I could tear and then trash. Surrounded by ministers like Rana Sanaullah and Khawaja Asif, I dont think they understand the spirit of the constitution as such there is no chance of its implementation as long as they remain in the political arena. The entire Punjab Police has been raised like a ‘Private Malatia’ that is very comfortable working with the likes of ‘Gullu Butts’ in fact they team-up very well to destroy public property. Video evidence clearly indicates their illegal conduct.
Constitution formulation and compliance has not been easy in the land of the pure
It is perhaps the only country in the world that had to enact four constitutions mainly due to hurdles created by the ‘Colonial Leftovers’. The 1956 version was abrogated by the first usurper Ayub Khan, his 1962 imposed document was disgraceful and died with his ouster in March 1969. After the break-up of Quaid’s Pakistan, first, the interim constitution of 1972 was enacted followed by the unanimously agreed, permanent agreement between the rulers and the ruled in August 1973.
The two usurpers (July 1977, October 1999) that followed tried to disfigure the document but it survived. In the first free and fair elections in 1970 anti-establishment parties prevailed. People’s Party had organized its own uniformed cadre called ‘People’s Guard’ which was tasked to maintain discipline in protests and rallies.
The National Awami Party (NAP) responded with its own force called ‘Pukhtun Zalme’. While PPP was an emerging party in KPK, NAP was an old and established political entity. To avoid clashes between the two, it was mutually agreed to disband both. The Police force by and large has always been anti-people as designed by the ‘Colonial Masters’. After the 1985 party-less elections due to massive recruitment against merit, it lost its political neutrality as well and has become a ‘Private Malatia’ of its recruiters.
The constitution is a living document that must be respected and followed by all parties in its totality. The anti-people mindset within the establishment has been a major obstacle in our march to freedom. ‘The force of ‘Gullu Butt’ has to be formalized to bring some structure in its activities for which a constitutional amendment is required or it may be declared illegal and disbanded permanently. In its present form, Punjab Police is also incorrigible and un-manageable it has to be raised again. Change of uniform has not made any difference in their conduct. Citizens of a sovereign state have to be served not served and controlled. No civilized society can survive under the rule of ‘Goons and Gullus’.
The writer is Ex-Chairman Pakistan Science Foundation. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org. The views expressed in this article are the author’s own and do not necessarily reflect the editorial policy of Global Village Space.