The stakes for the Long March are finally all on the table.
The Pakistan Supreme Court - put in place by Musharraf - has declared the Sharif brothers ineligible to stand in elections. As a direct result, Shahbaz Sharif is out as Chief Minister of Punjab.
Nawaz Sharif in a press conference declared that Zardari offered them a deal - drop the CJ issue and Shahbaz Sharif can continue to hold office. Protests are planned for all of Punjab.
Long March is scheduled for March 12-16th to Islamabad. Its main aim is to restore the Judiciary of Iftikhar Chaudhry which was dismissed by General Musharraf. Along with the Lawyer's Movement, the three major opposition parties - PML-N, JI, TeI - are going to participate.
It seems like we never learn from history. ZA Bhutto imposed the Governor rule in Baluchistan/NWFP and sent in Military to quell unrest in Bauchistan in 1970s. Bhutto was hanged in 1979, Military is still fighting insurgency in Baluchistan and more! And now this.....
As for history - Akbar remember Sharif brothers put Zardari in jail for &+ years for the same offences which they did in their tenure too. BTW Army ruled Pakistan more than any entity and they are and their western friends are responsible for all the mess. So only history repetition I'm seeing here is all time pointless JI is yet again is against secular forces. Hope people of Pakistan can come forward and get rid of so called opportunistic forces.
Neena thanks for starting the discussion. I have a disclaimer that only political party I ever sympathised to is PPP. Let us look at the situation closely. Salman Taseer is remnant of Musharraf gov as he was first appointed as care taker governor. The supreme court making the decisions was put in place by Musharraf on november 3rd 2007. Now Mr Zardari has owned up the blunder of disolving Punjab Govt on that Governor,s rec after that Supreme court,s decision.So possibilities are that, AA Zardari is,either a) Completely deluded? Lost touch with reality! Or b) Incompetetnt and making a needless mess Or c) On a course to take revenge for years of imrisonment, killing of his wife etc Or any combination of above and Now the ZA Bhutto example I gave is pertinent because he got a fresh start in 1970s after a huge disaster for Pakistan. Everybody knew Who the authoers of that disaster were. Bhutto, instead of punishing them, punished the very political forces who helped him pass the constitution of 1973(by imposing Governor Rule in Baluchistan in 1974 after dismissing the provincial Govt). That gave Military the path to re-enter the political arena.Other thing I mentioned was that excuse for Bhutto,s hanging was provided by a Supreme Court decision(Judicial Murder as it is rightly called now).Ironically at this juncture when people(Lawyers) struggled to get rid of Dicatator, BB very deftly inserted her self back in the relevance and unfortunately left us with a profound shock and Mr Zardai at her fateful exit. Mr Zardari is siding with unsavory charachters and Supreme Judges are at Political Murder this time. That is the history I am talking about. In larger scheme of things there is enough blame to go around for everybody. But I am afraid current political dispensation is losing this battle and fast.
On the subject of Salman Taseer, his Indian son Aatish Taseer's book Stranger to History: A Son's Journey Through Islamic Lands comes out this week. Rumor is that a Sanam Bhutto PPP takeover is being plotted, its also interesting that Nawaz is only criticizing Zardari and not the PPP.
Other thing I mentioned was that excuse for Bhutto,s hanging was provided by a Supreme Court decision(Judicial Murder as it is rightly called now). I will only believe in Judicial impartiality when they are going to reopen Bhutto's murder case and ask for nation's forgiveness for the injustice done to our elected PM. As for Nawaz Sharif I still think him as a remnant of Zia and the way he only got votes from Northern Punjab I'm not that wrong. He need to get rid of all time evil JI to get my sympathies.
Rumor is that a Sanam Bhutto PPP takeover is being plotted, its also interesting that Nawaz is only criticizing Zardari and not the PPP. Sanam Bhutto is so over rated by Anti PPP elements she didn't even able to secure a single seat in previous elections. She was very Anti Benazir and it doesn't go well with most PPP voters and workers, so I don't see any future for her.
Rohit - please disregard my last comment about Sanam Bhutto I confused her with Fatima Bhutto. You might me right about the speculations it does have some merit. Zardari as a president is much loved by the masses than reported in the media.
Yes, Stranger to History is available on www.amazon.ca and the McClelland and Stewart website; just started it and loving it!
....will only believe in Judicial impartiality when they are going to reopen Bhutto's murder case and ask for nation's forgiveness for the injustice done to our elected PM." I think that is like expecting too much from "Dogar Supreme court" and that is precisely my point. PPP had formed three governments since Zia Ul Haq,s demise but had shown no interest in gathering evidence and requesting the re-opening of Bhutto case(There is enough evidence from Justice G.Safadar Shah,s statements to General KM Arif,s book, to get to the truth).Starting from Nusrat Bhutto Vs CMLA(Zia), courts always decided gainst the toppled PP governments, so naturally as a victim of repeated injustice at the hands of supremes, it is incumbant upon PPP to look for, appoint and nurtue an upright judiciary but Alas Mr Zardari loves the Dogar Court . Nawaz Sharif is a citizen of Pakistan he should have same rights before the court or otherwise as Zardari being president of Pakistan enjoys.