Fascism at its Best; Democracy at its most Beautiful By Humayun Gauhar

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Punjab-police-become-fascist-force-under-Shahbaz-2

PAKISTAN TODAY                       
 

Fascism at its Best; Democracy at its most Beautiful

 
Humayun Gauhar
 

The Movie: ‘Ullu’ Butt Rules … OKAY?’ Starring: Gullu Butt, police tout and Commander of the Stormtroopers of the Brothers Sharif. The ‘G” should be dropped from his name and Gullu should be renamed ‘Ullu’, as in stupid owl. He is a Kashmiri settler, as are the Sharifs, not really Punjabis much as they would love to be. Having conquered Pakistan by capturing Punjab, they should now go and conquer their beloved Kashmir. Then they will get their much-yearned ‘normalization’ with India. Co-Staring: The fabled, much-feared Punjab police on a rampage. Location: Headquarters of Dr. Tahir ul Qadri’s political party and seminary in Lahore, capital of Punjab province ruled by the prime minister’s brother Shahbaz Sharif. The Date: Night between 16 and 17 June 2014. The Time: Around 1.30 am. The Duration: About 15 hours. The Event: Slaughter of innocent people. The Result: On that fateful night and day the Punjab police and ‘Ullu’ got a chance to show their muscle, killed ten and counting, including two women, injuring 80. Wielding big staves, Ullu Butt and his gang smashed many vehicles outside Qadri’s headquarters in posh Model Town where the Sharifs also have a house. The police not only looked on but their superintendent later gave pats of approval to Ullu and his goons. Ullu broke into a peculiar dance that has taken Punjab by storm. Now young boys with staves are dancing the ‘Ullu Dance’. You cannot fault us Pakistanis for making the best out of the worst situation. One of the smashers was a uniformed policeman. Worse, the police kept beating the arrested mercilessly with batons, punches and kicks – men and women, old and young, children included. The idea was to intimidate by terror. Sleeping men, women and children were dragged out of their homes, beaten and shot dead. Many women are missing. The police are Pakistan’s top rapists. One fears for these missing women. The Evidence: The carnage was captured on many television cameras. The evidence is there. After having done their dastardly deed, the police proceeded to loot shops, steal money and goods and treat themselves to ‘free’ cold drinks. Gamekeepers turned poachers with a vengeance, eh? Ullu rules…okay? So lump it. The Cause: Fright at the return of Qadri to lead a movement to topple the political system of which all our rulers are beneficiaries and to amend the constitution to make it more democratic in which elections cannot be rigged and stolen easily. What force might be behind Qadri petrifies them most. Not the army or America, surely? The Callousness: All this while our prime minister was on an irrelevant jaunt to Tajikistan. While the army chief could cancel his trip to Sri Lanka because of the importance of the army operation against terrorists in North Waziristan, the prime minister didn’t find it important enough to cancel his jaunt to Tajikistan to sign an irrelevant trade deal that his trade minister could easily have done. Sri Lanka has a special place in the hearts of our army chiefs anyway: that is where General Musharraf was when Nawaz Sharif illegally sacked him and eventually himself. The Official Excuse: Qadri’s workers cast the first stone at the police that had come only to remove barriers that it had itself placed on the road outside some years ago because now it felt that they impeded traffic. Tell me another. They cast the first stone in their sleep? Even if they did, does it behoove a supposedly organized, disciplined, law abiding police force to behave like a conquering army? Who cast the first stone is irrelevant. Focus on police behaviour. There’s no excuse for it. The Gibberish: The Sharifs’ attack dogs masquerading as ministers started talking their usual nonsense. “Qadri is returning to destabilize Pakistan and distract the army from the military operation against terrorists in North Waziristan.” What does that have to do with it? Why should it distract the army? “He is destabilizing democracy.” What democracy? Is this democracy? Actually, they are scared that Qadri’s movement could force the army to intervene and end their joyride again. The army would be stupid if it does for this is not the way. The system must be changed and the constitution amended by the people, if not through their ‘representatives’ in parliament then on the streets. Change by fiat rarely works.  The Smoking Gun: If the police came only to remove barriers, why did they bring Gullu and gang along? The fact that they did betrays malfeasance aforethought. It was premeditated slaughter and the police cast the first stone and fired the first shot. Why in the middle of the night? Why with thousands of policemen and hundreds of gangsters? It was pre-planned but backfired because like their bosses, the police have no sense. The Hackneyed Sharif Excuse: “I didn’t know,” says Shahbaz Sharif. “I was not in the loop”. The Sharif brothers think that they can fool all of the people all of the time. Just like Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif claimed after he surrendered Kargil to India that he didn’t know his army had attacked the disputed territory, Shahbaz would have us believe that he didn’t know that his police had attacked Qadri’s people. We saw in a few hours what was happening – police brutality, the performance of Ullu and gang – on numerous television channels allowed by a so-called dictator. But the ‘democratic’ Sharifs didn’t know what was going on? Do you really think that the police would dare perpetrate such an outrage without orders from the very top? 

The Question: 

Let’s take the Sharifs at their word and ask: what kind of prime minister are you Nawaz Sharif that you didn’t even know that your army had attacked a disputed territory occupied by India? What kind of chief minister are you Shahbaz Sharif that you didn’t know that your police was slaughtering people in Lahore with the help of your goon Ullu and gang?

 

The Conclusion: 

Both Sharif brothers are either so incompetent that they don’t deserve to hold any position of trust and responsibility, much less of chief executives of Pakistan and Punjab and must go, 

or both are liars and knew, in which case they are not democrats but criminals and must go. 

Either way, they must go. Go, in the name of God, go.

 

The Malfeasance: Instead of booking Ullu Butt, his goons and the policemen involved, police first booked Tahir ul Qadri’s son instead. Later, they said that they had no evidence and withdrew. According to one source, the now transferred police officials are saying that they were ‘only’ carrying out orders to “teach Qadri’s workers a lesson.” After the carnage the police accompanied by an official of the establishment division proceeded to Jinnah Hospital where the dead and injured were lying and tried to force the hospital administration to change its report and say that the dead and injured were hit by stones, not bullets. Television cameras recorded this too. The federal and provincial governments don’t have a leg to stand on, so they are desperately looking for crutches. To dilute public anger, the government transferred some police officials who will later sing like canaries. They registered a weak case against Ullu. When Ullu was brought to court the next day he was soundly thrashed by people and lawyers. Police advised Ullu to feign unconsciousness. He duly ‘fainted’ and they whisked away this prime witness and later obtained the remand.

 

History of Suicide: Have the Sharifs tripped over again and pressed their destruct button for the third time? Attacking political opponents is their penchant. Their goons attacked the Supreme Court in Sharif’s second government, finally forced the targeted chief justice out and appointed their pet judge in his stead who shamelessly exonerated Nawaz Sharif and his goons of this calumny. Rived with hubris, Nawaz Sharif then attacked the army for the third time, the first two being the forced resignation of army chief General Jahangir Karamat, the second trying to hang Kargil round General Musharraf’s neck. On that fateful day of October 12, 1999 Sharif went completely haywire, illegally sacked army chief Musharraf while he was in Sri Lanka, appointed an army engineer as chief, hijacked Musharraf’s returning aircraft and tried to send it to India. If I had told you in the morning of October 12, 1999 that this would happen later that day, you would have thought I was mad, not realizing that Nawaz Sharif would go mad in a few hours. Attacking Qadri’s headquarters was behaviour according to type.

 

Shahbaz Sharif’s reaction was typical: set up a judicial commission. I’m sure he raised his forefinger too. How can we trust any judicial commission for obvious reasons? 

If Shahbaz Sharif had even a modicum of understanding of the best traditions of democracy he would resign forthwith and save himself. So should the home and law minister. So too the chief secretary, home secretary and Punjab police chief. Even if the chief minister didn’t know, these people should have.

 

What’s wrong with Qadri’s efforts to overthrow the status quo that benefits only the rulers and amend the constitution to make it more democratic? I said last week that if this system doesn’t go first, Pakistan will. To save Pakistan it must be overthrown. Don’t get distracted by Tahir ul Qadri’s persona. Focus on his message. A terrified government spreads terror to intimidate people and force them to sullenly accept the status quo. The prime purpose was to intimidate Qadri workers before his impending return.

 

I also wrote last week that Pakistan is being slaughtered at the alter of democracy. This real, not figurative slaughter should show you. I thought I had become immune to the worst that happened in my country, but today even I am shocked at the barbarity of the Punjab government. They have proved the hackneyed old Greek saying again: “Those whom the gods would destroy they first make mad.”

 

God enjoins us to choose ‘Amr bil Ma’roof wan nahi an al Munkar’ – “He who commands good and forbids evil”. What have we done?

 

humayun.gauhar786@gmail.com

END

 

<bellaandzafar@hotmail.com> wrote:

Attention Ms Asma Jahangir

I saw the TV program, with anchor Dr Danish, Mr Babar Awan and you.

Your behaviour was the most condescending and you kept repeating the Mantra of a fixed mind set. 

You told Dr Danish rudely that “you are confused”! His politeness was exemplary, as he too could have responded suitably, but to his credit he did not.

Perhaps you have become too brazen by slapping lawyers in the courts. We have not forgotten that you are the saffron “witch” who can get away by saying whatever comes to your mind!

I have heard of your activities as a human rights lawyer but what you exhibited was always contrary to the basic principles of “human rights”.

Your blind support for the Sharif brothers (the PM and CM) is stinking to high heaven! e.g.

 

  • You support Democracy, yet in the same breath you condemn Imran Khan and Dr Tahir ul Qadri for making a peaceful protest! (a ‘learned’ lawyer saying that!) Isn’t this part of free democracy to protest?

  • You say nothing about the Police brutality in Model Town recently, which is totally against the rules of engagements when the protesters posed no threat. Yet the Gestapo Police went on to murder innocent people and shoot with their guns. Someone was behind all this.

  • You kept mum about Gullu Butt and his “hand in glove” activities” on that day with the Police. Who brought him?

  • You said nothing about the POLICE which after having arrested the protestors kept beating the civilians with sticks – at times 4 Policeman were hitting one old man. (I wonder what you would have said if one of them was you own nephew, niece, cousin, brother or UNCLE! – then this human rights lawyer would have gone barking mad.)

  • You did not condemn the Chief Minister as you are being well paid to represent him. Such an important activity occurring within his own house and he feigns that he was completely in the dark, how amusing. 

  • You said nothing about the BUREAUCRACY, the POLITICIANS or all others directly related to this bungling.

  • By your open support to the ruling class you have dirtied your hands with the blood of 14 people who died and 114 who are in the hospital and some still missing. In fact you literally become a party to these murders.

 

It is a SHAME that people whose profession is to practice law should come on the TV, behave in this atrocious and arrogant manner. You are a blot to the fare name of this nation and you should know people despise you madam. India is a much more proper place for you.

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