Former information minister Pervaiz Rashid said on Wednesday that civilian supremacy in Pakistan will remain elusive till all political parties became signatories to the Charter of Democracy.
He made the comments while speaking in flagship Naya Daur TV show Khabar Say Aagay. Rashid said political parties had learnt their lesson following Musharraf’s coup. He said the Charter of Democracy was the fruit of this. Rashid said this explained why both the PPP and PML-N governments completed their full five-year terms. He said all parliamentary forces joining hands to confront PTI chairman Imran Khan’s Azaadi March was also representative of this. Rashid said if all political parties securing representation in the next general elections resolved to ensure the Parliament remained sovereign this would bode well for the nation.
The former information minister said when news of a new army chief had been appointed in place of General Musharraf was proliferated he was informed some men had entered the news bureau and were ordering the news not be broadcast again.
Rashid said by the time the now infamous footage of army men scaling walls to take over buildings of strategic importance he was being held in a room. He said two armed men were tasked with watching over him. Rashid said the men had their guns pointed at him.
He said a major had taken him to his own apartment in Parliament Lodges where he was held at around midnight. Rashid said telephone lines were snapped and his cellphone was also taken away.
Journalist Matiullah Jan said October 12 should be a day for national introspection. He said the nation, political parties, media and journalists had not learnt anything from Musharraf’s coup. He said they were yet to repent. Reconciliation without truth was impossible.
He said Pakistan’s history was cyclical. The chain, Jan said, remained unbroken till date.
No dictator has been tried till date for ousting civilian governments. Even when Musharraf was convicted, a military spokesperson tore into the court verdict. The government of the day, Jan said, did not have the courage to deliver a shut up call to the individual. This, he said, was unfortunate for the nation.
Holding the establishment accountable for the prevailing imbroglio, he said, political parties did not even now have the temerity to look into ensuring civilian supremacy.
Jan concluded his appearance by likening those supporting Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) as “cultivated”. This generation, he said, which attached no importance with politics, unions or the Constitution had been deliberately kept away from politics. All they wanted was an idol to emulate.