Pakistani society is a fascinating combination of different mindsets and conflicting views. Various ethnicities, multiple versions of Islam, international agendas, local viewpoints and many times a lack of consensus on national issues dominate our daily lives.

Pakistan, since its inception in 1947 has seen major social changes and can be divided into three major phases based upon the thought process of the people and evolution of society. The first phase started soon after independence and was impressive in its energy and promise. Freedom in its true sense, liberation with responsibility had opportunity to thrive and grow. We saw the growth of textile industry, sugar industry and agriculture, bringing huge profits and prosperity in lives of Pakistanis.

The middle class grew, driven by teachers, engineers, doctors and skilled/semi-skilled labor forces. Pakistani expatriates by the thousands developed Libya, Saudi Arabia, United Arab Emirates, Bahrain, Iran, Afghanistan, the list goes on. PIA set up many airlines of Islamic gulf countries that have left PIA far behind now. Our country was a role model for developing nations like then South Korea that is now a leading industrialised nation of world.

Development in Pakistan in sixties was so impressive that Korea decided this is a nation worthy of copying; specially our five year development plans. The positivity of a nation set free from the shackles of British rule and Hindu hatred was the impetus for all this. Mangla and Tarbela Dams were developed during this period and provided the energy to take the country forward in all fields of life.

Underneath this positivity however, the fight for property settlement claims and acquisition of vacated assets continued. Many of these were the same people who were awarded and lauded by the British for treason against their own people. This same lot was predominantly in-charge of legislation and continued to protect their own interests by steering government policies towards their personal gain. In comparison to the leading class in India, those in power in Pakistan did not show the statesmanship required to protect the interests of a newly born nation. As a result the era of martial law began.

The real game changer that switched from first social era to second period started with the martial law of General Zia Ul Haq. This came in at the time of the Afghan jihad and brought with it the real breakdown of Pakistani society. The beginning of huge drugs and arms smuggling, sale of ammunition by people in government and the army to benefit personal coffers, leading to the development of a new class of ‘Ashrafia ’.

This era was also the era of funding of agendas above all else gradual infiltration of CIA, MI6, Mossad, Iranian intelligence, Saudi Wahabism, American funded radicalism, RAW funded Baloch separatism and so on , the list is as endless as were the NGOs in Pakistan. It has been the time of double standards, conflict and the indoctrination of the Pakistani minds with confusion.

For decades this nation was confused about the suicide attacks, the bombings, the madrassas, the rulers, their corruption and nepotism. The games played with their minds were aimed at reversing the value system. It worked. All Pakistanis will vouch that this nation is now so used to corruption that citizens turn a blind eye to it. Pakistanis no longer identify wrong as wrong. They have stopped raising their voices to injustice. They don’t come out on the streets unless they are supporting an agenda driven network.

The civil society and middle class is so battered by all kinds of utility bills and unfair taxes it has lost all hope in the system. Citizens watch but don’t stop someone stabbing his sister in public. People know the rulers are corrupt yet these people are part of the system that brings dishonest rulers back in power. Pakistanis fast and pray yet they lie. The biggest liar will use Quranic verses as ringtones to hide his hypocrisy. The outer trimmings of so called Islam such as the veil, the beard and lifestyle are used as strategy to make money. The best part is how the biggest looters and plunderers, the most corrupt do charity in hospitals, start “lungars”, distribute Ramadan rations etc to improve their public image.

Pakistan has now entered the third era of evolution as a nation. People and specially those out of formal government understand that things have to change. There is a relatively clear understanding of terrorism. The common man does understand that corruption is everywhere and starts at the top. He knows who is to blame but currently lacks the confidence and hope to stand up for his right. The biggest role in this heightened awareness of the common man has been that of media. In their constant quest for breaking news they have unleashed many Panama, Dubai and Wikileaks which have contributed to this opening of minds. The Internet and access to information has been the forerunner for this change as well as constant demands for transparency are met by information on the world wide web. Interestingly the marginalized segments of this society are ahead of the general public. They understand the malady and are taking steps for change. Welcome the new generation of artists, singers, directors and movies they are bringing out. Their stories highlight the reality of this society and give hope. Welcome the foreign educated sons and daughters of the soil who want Pakistan to be what it was meant to be. Welcome the differently abled who can see truth as it is and are pointing it out to those who can’t see despite their good vision. Welcome the women of this society, beaten up, stabbed, bought and sold who are have the guts to stand up for truth and justice where they can.

We as a nation have to make amends where we messed up. We want democracy yet not in the form of a monarchy running on nepotism and sycophancy. This agenda driven funding has to be stopped. It will take time but we hear the loud ringing of the bells of ruthless accountability.

We hear the sounds of illegal offshore companies and Swiss accounts filled with our taxpayers money. A visionless leadership has taken us into the debt trap, to be more apt the death trap. We hear the sound of RAWs Kulbhoshan and their Pakistani facilitators pursuing their anti-Pakistan plans having successfully infiltrated the state institutions . The change may take time, a few years, even decades to manifest in totality. But one can sense it is already here .

“The most confused you will ever get is when you try to convince your heart and spirit of something your mind knows is a lie.”