Relationship between national economy and security has been under somewhat unpleasant and unwelcome discussion for the last few days. As a matter of fact both national economy and security are integral part of each other. Strong economy boosts national security. If the economy is weak, the national security is obviously adversely affected as a result of which the nation and the country suffer. 

Army Chief General Qamar Javed Bajwa certainly had no intention of initiating a controversy when he delivered an address on security and economy in Karachi few days back and said the economy of the country is showing mixed indicators, growth has picked up but the debts are sky high, infrastructure and energy have improved considerably but the current account balance is not in our favour etc. 

Army spokesman Major General Asif Ghafoor also commented on the state of national economy and said that the national economy was not good if it is not bad. 

Interior Minister Professor Ahsan Iqbal out of blue sky jumped in the fray asking the ISPR chief to refrain from interfering in the economic matters as such irresponsible statements can dent Pakistan’s global image. 

The ISPR chief retaliated by expressing his disappointment at such a response from the government saying that as a citizen and a soldier he was quite disappointed over such a reaction and we have all done a lot of work for the economy and everyone needs to cooperate with each other. 

In all fairness, the comments of the Interior Minister in a hurried manner were in bad taste, uncalled for and unpleasant and not appreciated by all around. 

Now of all the persons, Prime Minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi has come out with a welcome appreciable statement after which this unpleasant and unwelcome discussion should end with heart burning at all. The prime minister has quite rightly duly acknowledged the right of the Army Chief to comment on the country’s economy. 

The Interior Minister simultaneously apparently having second thoughts has praised the army for its efforts in security and prosperity of the county saying we all ride the same boat and have to do our part to steer it through the storm , the government,democracy and army are on the same page and the issue has now been settled after clarification from the ISPR. 

The unpleasant discussion should better end on a positive note and everyone including columnists and anchorpersons should refrain from offering unsolicited comments in this regard. The interests of the nation and the country are supreme and should always be regarded and respected as such by everyone all the time pease, to say the least. 


Lahore, October 17.