Democracy Report Final Editing

  • Published on

  • View

  • Download

Embed Size (px)


<ul><li><p>7/31/2019 Democracy Report Final Editing</p><p> 1/8</p><p>Democracy in Pakistan</p><p>Democracy:-</p><p>Democracy is a form of government in which power is held by people under a free</p><p>electoral system. It is derived from the Greek [ dimokratia ] "popular</p><p>government" which was coined from (dmos), "people" and (kratos), "rule,</p><p>strength".</p><p>In political theory, democracy describes a small number of related forms of government</p><p>and also apolitical philosophy. Even though there is no universally accepted definition of</p><p>'democracy', there are two principles that any definition of democracy includes. The first</p><p>principle is that all members of the society have equal access to power and the second that</p><p>all members enjoy universally recognized freedoms and liberties. An essential process in</p><p>representative democracies are competitive elections, that are fair both substantively and</p><p>procedurally. Furthermore, freedom of political expression, freedom of speech and freedom</p><p>of the press are essential so that citizens are informed and able to vote in their personal</p><p>interests. Popular sovereignty is common but not a universal motivating philosophy for</p><p>establishing a democracy. In some countries, democracy is based on the philosophical</p><p>principle of equal rights. Many people use the term "democracy" as shorthand forliberal</p><p>democracy, which may include additional elements such as political pluralism, equality</p><p>before the law, the right to petition elected officials for redress of grievances, due process,</p><p>civil liberties, human rights, and elements ofcivil society outside the government. Though</p><p>the term "democracy" is typically used in the context of a political state, the principles are</p><p>also applicable to private organizations and other groups.(1)</p><p>Types of Democracy:-</p><p>There are several varieties of democracy some of which provide better representation and</p><p>more freedoms for their citizens than others. However, if any democracy is not carefully</p><p>legislated to avoid an uneven distribution of political power with balances such as the</p></li><li><p>7/31/2019 Democracy Report Final Editing</p><p> 2/8</p><p>separation of powers, then a branch of the system of rule is able to accumulate power in a</p><p>way that is harmful to democracy itself. Some types are given below:-</p><p> Direct Democracy:-</p><p>Direct democracy, classically termed pure democracy, comprises a form ofdemocracy and</p><p>theory ofcivics wherein sovereignty is lodged in the assembly of all citizens who choose to</p><p>participate. Depending on the particular system, this assembly might pass executive</p><p>motions, make laws, elect and dismiss officials and conduct trials. Direct democracy stands</p><p>in contrast to representative democracy, where sovereignty is exercised by a subset of the</p><p>people, usually on the basis of election.(2)</p><p> Democratic Dictatorship:-</p><p>In Mao Zedong's China democratic dictatorship was where democracy was to extended to</p><p>the people, and dictatorial methods were applied to those excluded from the ranks of the</p><p>people'. The people were the members of the four social classes; the working class, the</p><p>peasantry, thepetty bourgeois and the national bourgeois. According to Mao, the people</p><p>were to enjoy freedom of speech, assembly, and association, they were to have the right to</p><p>vote and elect their own government which was to exercise the dictatorial methods over the</p><p>excluded masses. (3)</p><p> Economic Democracy:-</p><p>Economic Democracy is a socioeconomicphilosophy that suggests transfer of decision</p><p>making authority from a small minority ofcorporate shareholders to the larger majority of</p><p>public stakeholders. While there is no single definition or approach, all theories and real-world examples of Economic Democracy are based on a core set of fundamental</p><p>assumptions.(4)</p></li><li><p>7/31/2019 Democracy Report Final Editing</p><p> 3/8</p><p> Illiberal Democracy:-</p><p>An illiberal democracy is a governing system in which although fairly free elections take</p><p>place, citizens are cut off from real power due to the lack ofcivil liberties. This may be</p><p>because a constitution limiting government powers exists but its liberties are ignored, or to</p><p>the simple absence of an adequate legal constitutional framework of liberties. Illiberal</p><p>democratic governments may believe they have a mandate to act in any way they see fit as</p><p>long as they hold regular elections. One proposed method of determining whether a regime</p><p>is an illiberal democracy is by determining whether "it has regular, free, fair, and</p><p>competitive elections to fill the principal positions of power in the country, but it does not</p><p>qualify as Free in Freedom House's annual ratings of civil liberties and political rights".(5)</p><p>Historical Background of Democracy in Pakistan:-</p><p>Pakistan has been under military governance for the majority of its 61 years of existence.</p><p>All five of the nations elected governments have been removed by the army, on each</p><p>occasion with the stated or implicit support of the president. On two of these occasions</p><p>(1993 and 1996) another civilian government was installed in its place, and in the</p><p>remaining three (1958, Ayub Khan; 1977, Zia-ul-Haq; 1999, Pervez Musharaf), military</p><p>leaders seized power for themselves outright. Further, of the three elected prime ministers</p><p>(Nawaz Sharif and Benazir Bhutto both served twice), one was executed (Z.A. Bhutto), and</p><p>the other two were exiled under threat of imprisonment if they return (Benazir Bhutto and</p><p>Nawaz Sharif).</p><p>After the election of Prime Minister Benazir Bhutto in 1988 to replace military ruler</p><p>Mohammad Zia-ul-Huq, after Zias death in a plane crash, observers believed that Pakistan</p><p>had entered a democratic phase of its political history, with the army having made atransition from the role of kingmaker to that of referee. Instability returned, however, in</p><p>August 1990 when President Ishaq Khan invoked a Zia-era constitutional amendment to</p><p>remove Bhutto from office. Nawaz Sharif became prime minister after elections held in</p><p>October 1990, with Sharif also being removed in 1993 under the same amendment. Bhutto</p><p>returned for three years before being dismissed by President Farooq Leghari for favoritism</p></li><li><p>7/31/2019 Democracy Report Final Editing</p><p> 4/8</p><p>and corruption in November 1996. In generally free and fair parliamentary elections held in</p><p>February 1997, Sharifs Pakistan Muslim League won a substantial victory, and Sharif</p><p>moved in April 1997 to remove the controversial Eighth Amendment which allowed the</p><p>president to dismiss the government and appoint military chiefs and provincial governors.</p><p>Sharif further strengthened his position by replacing the Chief Justice of the Supreme Court</p><p>and pressuring the resignation of President Leghari; he furthermore pressed the Lahore</p><p>High Court to convict Benazir Bhutto and her husband Asif Ali Zardari of corruption, with</p><p>a sentence of five years imprisonment, a fine of $8.6 million, and a disqualification from</p><p>public office.</p><p>Assuming power by takeover on October 12, 1999, Chief of Army Staff Pervez Musharraf</p><p>suspended Pakistans constitution of 1973 and assumed for himself the additional title ofChief Executive. He appointed a National Security Council of eight members to serve as</p><p>Pakistans supreme authority. On May 12, 2000, the Supreme Court unanimously declared</p><p>the coup valid and granted Musharraf executive and legislative authority through October</p><p>2002. On June 20, 2001, he named himself president to replace Mohammad Rafiq Tarar.(6)</p><p>PAKISTAN, A DEMOCRATIC STATE:-</p><p>Pakistan is a democratic state but only by name. Mostly it has been ruled over by military</p><p>dictators, the force that was set to defend the borders of the country. Thus by betraying its</p><p>responsibilities, it has not only damaged political institution, but we have lost places of</p><p>strategic importance such as part of Siyahcheen and Kargil. Military men have always been</p><p>involved in politics since the very first day of independence and that is why we see political</p><p>instability in Pakistan. Even in the life time of its founder, our politicians were anxiously</p><p>waiting for his death so as they may have a chance to govern the country for their selfish</p><p>end. Constitution made and unmade during the history of Pakistan. Unfortunately we</p><p>waited for our first constitution to be made and implemented in the country for nine years,</p><p>and that constitution worked for two and a half years only. General Ayub was the first</p><p>dictator who pushed the constitution behind and ruled the country for eleven years without</p><p>any constitution. When his regime failed badly, he handed the government over to another</p><p>military dictator and in the meantime our beloved country disintegrated and East Pakistan</p></li><li><p>7/31/2019 Democracy Report Final Editing</p><p> 5/8</p><p>became Bangladesh. General Zia-ul-Haq came in power in 1976 and gave rise to</p><p>talibanization and kalashenkove culture in the country. Because of this culture, we are</p><p>suffering from bomb blasts in cities and civil militancy in rural areas like Swat and FATA.</p><p>Though abrogation of constitution results in capital punishment, but here in Pakistan no</p><p>body was hung. Many times, constitutions were treated as trash and abrogated in the</p><p>presence of our political leaders, but no body lamented them. On the contrary they have</p><p>strengthened the law breakers and are doing the same practice at present. Thus this country</p><p>without constitution runs only by the grace of God. Otherwise, it would have ceased to run</p><p>decades before.</p><p>Reasons of Democracy Always Failed in Pakistan:-</p><p>Why has democracy always failed in Pakistan? India and Bangladesh, which sharing a</p><p>number of cultural and demographic traits with Pakistan, have enjoyed a number of</p><p>subsequent democratic governments chosen through free and fair elections. A Pakistani</p><p>democracy NGO named Pildat suggests four explanations:-</p><p> Insufficient assertiveness by legislators: - The elected representatives were by</p><p>and large not aware of their rights and responsibilities and no effective system was</p><p>evolved to make these representatives aware of their responsibilities.</p><p> Cultivation of democratic elites disrupted by military governance: - During</p><p>the periods of military rule, the political process which on its own momentum develops</p><p>new leadership in the country came to a halt. Whenever democracy was restored, the</p><p>process did not continue long enough to allow new leadership to emerge.</p><p> Alienation and disengagement of educated middle classes from politics: -</p><p>The educated classes mostly from the middle class remained largely unconcerned about</p><p>the political process. They were either ignored or got disillusioned because they saw noprospects for them in the process. The political activity remained largely confined to</p><p>the moneyed class or the street toughs. The educated middle class, professionals,</p><p>scholars, minorities and women need to be encouraged to join the political process</p><p>more actively.</p></li><li><p>7/31/2019 Democracy Report Final Editing</p><p> 6/8</p><p> Lack of active citizenry exercising accountability: - There had been no</p><p>initiative taken by the citizens to monitor the performance of the elected representatives</p><p>and elected bodies and to hold them accountable to their voters on the basis of their</p><p>track record.(7)</p><p>The Future of Democracy in Pakistan:-</p><p>Quaid-e-Azam Muhammad Ali Jinnah told his fellow members of the Muslim League on</p><p>9th June 1947 I do not know what the ultimate shap...</p></li></ul>