Pakistan-a country created in the name of Islam, Seven decades ago, when finally Indian subcontinent was able to unshackle itself from the British colonial domination. Since the very existence of Pakistan its future was in the doldrums.

This newly formed nation, back in 1947, was desperately poor and desiccate, home to millions of destitute, illiterate and malnourished people.  Pakistan at that time had to start from the scratch as the public institutions, bigger share of urban population, industries and transport infra structure was inherited by India. Pakistan had no money, no professionals, and no institutions. Nehru’s remark is enough to describe the conditions of Pakistan at the time of partition. He said at the birth of this new nation that this country could not survive more than six months. But here we are-still alive, breathing and progressing. We didn’t have any tangible materials at the time of partition but what we had was the unbreakable spirit and enthusiasm of our forefathers. Therefore we emerged as the only Nuclear Power in all Islamic countries, possessing the best army and intelligence agencies.

Quaid-e-Azam outshone the great determination at the desperate situation caused by the partition. At that time whatever Pakistan received was nothing but scrap and out of order machines, broken weapons rust eaten artillery unserviceable aircrafts and a limited number of army. Quaid, at that time decided to proceed with the limited resources. He focused on the education, military, foreign and economic policies of country. Big business groups such as ‘Adam G’ helped Quaid. The demise of Quaid, barely a year after the creation of Pakistan was great tragedy for the whole nation. The nation then suffered another huge loss with the assassination of Liaquat Ali Khan. After that politicians who came were mostly corrupt, interested in maintaining their political power and securing their interest, so to have them as representative authority didn’t provide much hope of a democratic state that provide socio economic justice and fair administration to all Pakistani citizens.

However 1960’s era bought industrial revolution. It was the brightest era in Pakistan history. Pakistan was the country who gave loan to Germany. But then the fall of Dhaka, nationalization period of Bhutto, the martial law era of Zia ul Haq and Musharaf with Pakistan being forced into terrorism with the great story of Taliban and 9/11 followed by the status quo of two political parties PPP and PML-N which is now finally broken by Imran Khan.

What Pakistan has achieved so far is terrorism, extremism and sectarianism among other things. Zia ul Haq’s concept of Islamic state and one sect promotion leads to sectarianism which wasn’t there in Pakistanis as much as it is now at present. Terrorism is now one of the biggest challenges faced by the Pakistan. It was initiated in Musharaf era and is still a big problem for Pakistan’s health. The rise of sectarian conflict and the emergence of political parties were compounded by the proliferation of extremist ideologies and violence emanating from Pakistan involvement in Afghan war.

Feudalism- a parasitical curse which British colonizers left us with and that we have failed to get off till this day. It has been taking place for years before partition and after partition damaging Pakistan’s democracy. It is driven by principles of individualism, oppression, bondage, slavery. Although Bhutto played a vital role in eradicating feudalism but it is still prevalent in Pakistan, as per the stats in 2016, 80 percent of representatives of Punjab Assembly were feudal lords. However, with the coming generations being more politically aware and apprised, there is hope for eventual change.

Pakistan’s current total population has soared to 207.75 million with an average annual growth rate of 2.4 percent since1998 making Pakistan the world's fifth-most-populous country. Our inability to provide such a huge population with a good quality life results in nearly a third of Pakistanis living in poverty and only 58 percent literate. This is indeed a scary picture. The statistics displays plainly how little priority has been/is given to population control in Pakistan over the years.

Pakistan has landed into energy, water and economic crisis. There has been a decline of exports from $25 million in 2012-2013 to $20 million in 2015-16. Pakistan has been plagued with corruption since its very existence. Inequality was as much a problem then as it is now. What we need is good leadership that can lead nation to prosperity. It requires a leader just like great Quaid, who when once asked by his ADC about what should be served in cabinet meetings replied angrily nothing except water as it’s the public money. Whosoever needs anything must bring it from their house.

What Pakistan want is the good governance which can make sure that people are appointed on the basis of merit only then can we thrive and excel in this world. Much work is needed to be done to change our society of “have and have nots” into a well established prosperous nation. It is a high time that we begin to focus on human development- education, eradication of poverty, to develop good relations with neighbors in order for peace to prevail. However Pakistan had survived seventy years and has made its mark on the world and it will continue to do so.

 

LAHORE: Independence Day function held at Lahore Cathedral.–Photo by Mohsin Raza