Emergency declared in Pakistan
General Pervez Musharraf declared a state of Emergency in Pakistan today (Saturday) ahead of the critical Supreme Court decision over his election to the President’s office in uniform. Along with the declaration of Emergency, the General has also instituted a Provisional Constitutional Order (PCO), suspending Pakistan’s Constitution, and ordered the Army to storm into the Supreme Court building to detain the Chief Justice of Pakistan, Justice Iftikhar Mohammed Chaudhry, as the Supreme Court of Pakistan had declared the state of Emergency illegal. Aitzaz Ahsan, President of the Supreme Court Bar Association and the valiant leader of the Lawyers’ Movement, has also been arrested. According to news, more “high profile arrests” are expected to take place. Earlier today, all independent news channels were blocked across Pakistan.
The blatantly off-handed, treasonous, and unconstitutional attacks by General Pervez Musharraf on the judiciary, media, and people of Pakistan have brought the true dictatorial character of the present regime into the lime-light. It has now been proved beyond doubt that Pakistan can never progress into any form of democracy without getting rid of the military from politics. All attempts to enter into any ‘compromise’ or ‘deal’ with the military can only hinder the struggle for democracy.
Strengthening the military rule is not a solution to the mounting religious militancy in the Pakistan, though the General is expected to cite the recent security threats offered by the religious extremists in the North Western Frontier Province as the primary excuse for the declaration of Emergency. Such an excuse is simply bogus. The military rule is only capable of inciting more terror and more militancy in Pakistan, if anything. The General wants to portray an image of Pakistan as a State severely threatened by religious fundamentalism in order to justify his action before the International community.
It is up to the people of Pakistan to show that General Musharraf can only aggravate the recent crisis that Pakistan is facing. Military dictatorship is not a solution, and never was.