What else do you expect if you have pumpkins as your rulers and elite? At this point in time, vicious storms are gathering threateningly on the country’s western borders. After years of calm, the LoC is becoming uncomfortably live too, with the Indians pointing finger at us for the recent spate of bomb blasts in their country and accusing the ISI of the terrorist attack on their Kabul embassy as well. In the tribal belt and the settled areas in the vicinity, the extremists are becoming increasingly aggressive and a law unto themselves, behaving like a sovereign power, dictating terms to the state authorities for peace, and even projecting themselves as the alternative leadership for the Islamabad throne. But how are these elites reacting to all these threats and dangers? By setting deadlines, by announcing long marches, by threatening sit-ins, isn’t it? But what for? For their own self-driven agendas and for their own maddening pursuits of settling personal scores; isn’t it? Have you ever heard any of them ever making some sensible proposal or mooting some wise idea in detail for facing up to these threats? Isn’t it that you hear of only silly noises and populists slogans coming forth from their loud mouths? To cope with all these challenges, a visionary gracing the ranks of the opposition-in-wilderness has a gem of wisdom. Just redraw a new constitution, is his magic recipe. But the sage doesn’t tell how his magic formula would bring about his touted miracle when these challenges are immediate needing instantaneous remedial actions, while framing a constitution anew needs months upon months, if not years, in spite of the best intents and efforts of its framers. And that unbeatable intellectual light and unsurpassable political wizard who has anointed himself as this nation’s spiritual guru and its political guide, Mian Mohammad Nawaz Sharif, the head honcho of the PML (N), he has only a plaintive refrain to make to address all these existential threats to us. The ruling PPP leadership, he complains, has not taken him and his party into confidence on the moves taken to come to grips with these challenges. And that is it that he has all on this score. What do you make of it if not that his heart is not in these issues, even though of so fundamental import to this country’s existence and its security and stability? He is all obsessed with his blinding madness to avenge his ouster by the retired general and somehow get him and drag him to the gallows. Ludicrously, he has catapulted his obsession into the people’s mandate in the February poll, whereas the people had rejected him outright in Sindh and Balochistan, even in the subsequent bye-elections, and it is only in the NWFP where he could muster up a sprinkling of public vote and in Punjab where his party was though the largest but not even in simple majority. The PPP says, and rightly, that it holds a countrywide people’s mandate, which it secured not for the judges’ reinstatement but for its promise of roti, kapra aur makan. Yes, it did. But where is roti? Has not the runaway food inflation on its watch snatched roti from many more mouths? Has indeed anyone any idea what a piece of roti now costs, what rate a cup of tea sells in a shabby roadside eatery, and what price a plate of pulse is sold at? Does anyone in the PPP, or in the elite, for that matter, know that a labourer from Swabi in Islamabad has to spend more than half of his day’s earning on just his food and the rest he consumes up in the days he finds no work, leaving not even a paisa with him to send home for his hungry children and starving family? Does anyone in this elite nobility knows that he sleeps at night on the pavements, as do numerous labourers who work for a day or two and remain idle for days on end for no job? Has anyone in the gentry strutting on the national political landscape so grandiosely even a slight idea that jobless, hungry and starving pavement sleepers in cities and metropolises alike are multiplying by leaps and bounds in these days? These elites across the spectrum must wake up to the horrendous realities on the ground. If it becomes a Somalia of this country, as it seems heading to terribly, where would they stage their long marches and sit-ins, and to whom will they be setting deadlines to meet? They must change, their politics must change, their rhetoric must change, and their idiom must change before it is too late. A stormy tide is evidently in the making to ferociously sweep away each and all.

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