Over the past few days, I have received a lot of drafts of petitions and statements against the emergency rule in Pakistan…I am trying to make sense of where does the Pakistani nation stand on the current crisis. And frankly – I can’t make head or tail of it. Maybe my own knowledge is limited so I am hoping some friends here can help me understand:
1. Do we want the emergency rule to go away, or Musharraf to step down from his military post?
2. Do we want Musharraf to leave his uniform, or altogether disappear from the scene?
3. Who or what are we proposing as alternatives? Politicians who spent time in self-imposed exiles or those who are sitting in the parliament now (and have been there for the past 10-15 years now)?
4. How do we make sure that the different branches of the government operate without (a) stepping over each others’ toes while maintaining checks and balances, and (b) without indulging in activism for the sake of it? What does the nation think of Musharraf’s indictment against the judiciary and the media?
5. How does the nation want to deal with the threat of extremism and terrorism? Do we even see it as a grave threat – or just another fact of life you just learn to live with?