KARACHI: The emergence of new state political power actors in recent years that were previously dormant have precipitated the weakening of the sole power actor of past.
This quantum shift is a healthy sign for the state of Pakistan, said S. Akbar Zaidi, renowned political economist and social scientist while delivering a lecture titled ‘Changing Nature of Pakistani State’ in the first episode of the ‘Distinguished Lecturer Series, an academic program initiated by Dean Faculty of Arts, University of Karachi.
In reiteration of the neo-paradigm shift of State power players, the speaker identified that society and non state actors have also contributed much. Previously enjoyed only by a single element as the sole power broker of the State, a series of political events triggered the rejuvenation of independent judiciary, media and other democratic actors that have been pivotal for this shift in state dynamics and now enjoy equal partnership of state-power.
This, the eminent speaker highlighted, has gradually taken place from a period starting from 2007 to April 2014, where this process is experiencing a hopefully evanescent slowdown.
Analyzing the current Qadri-Imran long march, he stated that such events are part and parcel of a regular and healthy process of democratization resulting in the inoculation of a sense of tolerance, which is the crux of democracy in society. Such courses subsequently lead towards true democratic evolution of state and society, where questions may be raised and accountability must be second nature.
However, the speaker was quick to rebuke notions and political activities such as ‘civil disobedience’ and term it as ominous, elucidating its adverse impact on society, state and their complex inter relation.
Instigations such as ‘non-payment of taxes’ only prove to be detrimental to democratization process and outside the realm of constitutional practices. He cited many international examples where such follies were found in new democracies, and were resolved owing to the ‘self correctional’ attribute of functional democracy.
Professor Dr. Moonis Ahmar, Dean Faculty of Arts at Karachi University commented that the formation and sustenance of a prosperous and progressive welfare state is never the sole responsibility of the state actors, but also lies within the hands of the common man.
He insisted that only when nations adopt zero tolerance towards nepotism, corruption and infidelity do they start treading the delicate road towards real democratization. He added that it is high time that Pakistanis from all walks of life realize the heavy onus upon their shoulders and unite for a common cause to defeat illiteracy, oppression, and surmount the challenges ubiquitous to the developing nations of the world.
The concerted endeavour of state and society is the quickest and surest answer to route such conundrums plaguing Pakistani society since the last past half century.
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