The sun may have set on direct rule by the British Raj, but its legacies and tyrannical abuses continue to be adopted by New East India through natives who take pride in being remnants of the Raj - either being descendants of former members of the Unionist Party, or beneficiaries of the system they left behind. Some descendants of the colonial legacy profess that neither Quaid, Iqbal, nor the All India Muslim League were instrumental in the creation of Pakistan, but it was instead a gift by Churchill and the Raj. This moral decadence was visible when a scion of the former Unionist Party, who served as President, had no remorse when the BBC telecast a documentary about his family’s involvement in the smuggling of stolen cars.

Quaid’s early death was an obstacle in the shedding of the colonial legacy, and in the reformation of civil and uniformed services to adopt a role of serving the people, instead of serving an occupying power. In India, the reformation process was achieved in 1949 with the adoption of a constitution to become an independent country. The princely land holdings awarded by the British at pleasure of HM Government stood cancelled in 1949, and the Indian constitution debarred holding dual nationalities, thus ensuring no split loyalties.

The Pakistani ruling elite, however, failed to undertake this transformation, being beneficiaries of the Raj which gave lands, titles, jobs etc. in return for their loyalties to British occupation. They continued to live in the glory of the past, when select natives enjoyed privileges for their tyrannical role in prolonging occupation. Even after 72 years of independence, there are numerous powerful individuals or groups within the political elite and paid establishment that are involved in transfer of black money earned mostly through corrupt practices and abuse of power to places like the UK, or Canada, which they consider safe havens for self, family and assets.

ALI MALIK T,

Lahore, February 3.