Protests Are Banned – II


Ok I am going to keep this short because I’m feeling really lazy right now, but I just have to write this. Can’t delay it any more. It is a follow up of my last blog post Protests Are Banned. Needless to say, the urge of writing on this topic came from the ongoing ‘dharney’ in the country. It’s not about whether these certain protests are right or wrong, but it is the reaction of our politicians and sections of public to the idea of demonstrations in the country.

All our ‘leaders’ claim that Pakistan is a democratic country but these protests are a threat to this system. Now, even those who don’t hold a degree in political science, know that in a democratic society, all citizens have the right to protest. It doesn’t matter if you agree with their point of view or not, as long as they are peaceful, you cannot stop them from registering their protest. If I am facing a problem in the country I live in and the government is not taking notice despite my complaints, I will go out on streets and make my problem public. I don’t have to justify my cause because I it’s my right.

I don’t even have to make sure that I have a lot of people support so I can make a stronger case. As a citizen, I am entitled to all the privileges and rights and the government is bound to make sure they fulfill my demands. So even if I am out protesting alone, it is not a reason for the government to ignore my complaint or ridicule me because I have no support. By protesting, I am not destroying my country’s image. I am merely demanding the government to take notice of the problems I am facing as a citizen. If my demands are unjustified, it is the leaders’ responsibility to make that clear. But telling me to get off just because the protest makes them uncomfortable…not justified. That will only make me more stubborn and I’ll take a more rigid stance.

This is exactly the reason of PTI and PAT’s prolonged sit-ins. Had the government been a bit humane and treated them with a bit more respect, things wouldn’t have been this messy.


7 thoughts on “Protests Are Banned – II”

  1. There is a thin lining between legitimate protests and anarchy. The former is meant for getting one’s due rights. In the current crisis, it were the 4 NA seats of the PTI and an FIR of the model town tragedy that killed PAT workers.
    The latter is meant for uprooting the entire system on the grounds of revenge for the denied rights.

    1. Agreed. Being stubborn and holding the capital hostage is definitely wrong. But the fact remains that this entire mess is created by the government. PML-N has failed to deliver. I’m not in favor of the demand to uproot the govt which is equal to uprooting the system but the so called ‘leaders’ have given people every excuse to justify the demand of the protesters. Even those who are against the protests can’t come up with a reason to prove that their demands or attitude is unjustified.

  2. I would say that PTI/PAT have already done a great service and should now return with peace. PAT’s demand for FIR has been fulfilled, while PTI’s demand for reelection on 4 seats can not be mishandled after the chaos government is confronted with.
    Developing a just democracy takes time, and we should all be thankful to the protesters who have expedited the process. But uprooting the entire system now won’t do any good.
    We should also be thankful to the government who has not been as brutal as one in the dictatorial regime of Musharraf, in which protesters were indiscriminately killed in great numbers, on May 12, in Lal Masjid siege and in many untold incidences of Baluchistan.

    1. Well NS is capable of being more brutal than Musharraf. Eg Model Town incident. It’s good that he refrained to use much force against the protesters this time but I think the credit for that goes to the army and opposition for knocking sense into him. He has been making the same mistakes he made before and had it not been for Zardari and the likes, he would have doomed himself again.
      Both PTI and PAT should definitely back off now, they are dragging it and making people suffer. But it’s going to hurt their own image if they go without PM’s resignation. On a personal level both IK and TuQ are at a point of no return.

  3. Agreed on most of ur points.
    That NS has been better at being less brutal than he could be is a testimony that we are not living in a dictator’s regime i.e we are living under a democracy. NS was careful enough to seek help from others, called up a joint parliamentary session.
    Dictators dont do that. They call up gunmen to end crisis. Indeed we should be thankful to the army for not taking all this chaos as a ground for a military coup. They seem to have matured now.

    1. Like I said IK and TuQ are both being stubborn. IK is not a good politician at all, it’s his nature to dictate others and TuQ isn’t into politics at all. Had they not take such an extreme stand they could have gone back without being embarrassed.

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