News Analysis |
Fawad Chaudhry, Information Minister, has once again passed some controversial remarks about the Pushtunkhwa Milli Awami Party chief Mehmood Achakzai. According to media reports, Mr. Chaudhary accused Achakzai of robbing the country and making anti-state statements, resulting in a strong response from PkMAP senator Usman Kakar. Mr. Kakar reportedly accused Fawad Chaudhary of ‘licking the boots of’ former military ruler Pervez Musharraf.
The Senate Chairman Sadiq Sanjrani had to intervene more than once and asked Fawad Chaudry not to use “unparliamentary” language, saying that running the House is government’s responsibility and it needs to exercise greater tolerance towards the opposition. It is important to mention here that since the time PTI came into power, there have been heated debates and increased exchange of harsh words in the assembly.
Political commentators opine that Mr. Chaudhary should have used decent language and must have avoided using such charged language against the opposition leaders.
It is important to mention here the recent tussle between the Minister for Information and PML-N & PPP lawmakers where the speaker had to repeatedly intervene and urged them to remain peaceful. Similarly, a month ago there was a fight between the PTI and PML-N lawmakers in the Punjab assembly. Shockingly, the PML-N lawmakers are accused of not only damaging the public property but also manhandling the staff of the assembly.
Moreover, the government and opposition have recently decided to form an Ethics Committee last Thursday. Defence Minister Pervez Khattak informed the house it had been decided during a parliamentary meeting of PTI lawmakers that assembly proceedings would be run strictly in accordance with rules, “and the use of unparliamentary language would be discouraged.” According to details, the said committee will have members from the treasury and opposition benches to devise a joint strategy for the smooth running of the lower house.
Read more: Fawad Chaudhry: I googled the Heli-rates
Use of Indecent langue in Pakistan’s Political Discourse
This did not happen for the first time in Pakistan’s modern political history that the lawmakers used non-parliamentary language in the house. As a matter of fact, there are a number of politicians who not only used bad language for their political opponents but also make derogatory comments to ‘insult’ women politicians.
Rana Sanaullah, former Law Minister of Punjab and senior leader of PML-N, while speaking to reporters outside the Punjab Assembly made inappropriate comments about the women who attended the rally of PTI, saying: “The women who attended the rally were not from honorable families because their dance moves implied where they had actually come from.”
According to media reports, Mr. Chaudhary accused Achakzai of robbing the country and making anti-state statements, resulting in a strong response from PkMAP senator Usman Kakar.
Another PML-N leader, Abid Sher Ali, also issued derogatory remarks against PTI’s chief whip and Minister for Human Rights Dr. Shireen Mazari while addressing a public gathering, saying that while she was protesting against Finance Minister Miftah Ismail’s budget speech in the National Assembly, she had said: “Don’t touch me.” “What is there to touch?” he asked a crowd in Punjabi, in what can be described as an attempt to make a lewd joke.
A senior leader of PML-N and former Foreign Minister Khawaja Asif also insulted the PTI’s leader, Shireen Mizari, by calling her a tractor trolley. JUI-F leader Maulana Fazlur Rehman, Defence Minister Pervez Khattak and former National Assembly speaker Ayaz Sadiq were also seen using foul language against their political rivals.
Read more: Fawad Chaudhary: Minister of Information or Disinformation?
Political analysts believe that the society in Pakistan is already polarized and divided along various ethnic & sectarian lines and this latest trend of foul language will further radicalize the youth in the country. Experts often have been seen suggesting the politicians to be careful when they decide to verbally attack their opponents. Improper use of language will give birth to more non-democratic political values in the country which will ultimately challenge the quality of our democracy.
Political commentators opine that Mr. Chaudhary should have used decent language and must have avoided using such charged language against the opposition leaders. The government is expected to be patient and graceful, they add.