"Let there arise out of you a band of people inviting to all that is good enjoining what is right and forbidding what is wrong; they are the ones to attain felicity".
(surah Al-Imran,ayat-104)
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User Name: Abubakr
Full Name: Abubakr Ayesh
User since: 4/Jun/2012
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Hamid Mir, Zaheer ul Islam and The Collusion of Institutions


            The grave act that took place in Karachi a few days ago added to the pile of numerous atrocities that have been committed in the City of Lights. Nevertheless, it led to a controversy that is capable of wrecking havoc to two of our major institutions.

            On ethical and moral grounds, such an incident is inhumane and it desecrates the sanctity of human life. Furthermore, it violates the right to freedom of speech. Nevertheless, this issue has more profound strings attached to it particularly because the targeted journalist accused the chief of the country’s primary secret agency and generally because Mir has had a volatile relationship with military overtime. It is understandable of Mir to blame ISI in the light of events that constitute his career in journalism.

            However, it is the main institution the media that is culpable for igniting the spark. The manner in which one of the news channels carried out a marathon that represented one facet of the situation not only represents the media’s penchant towards acquiring higher ratings but more importantly it depicts that the media is not socially responsible as yet. An accusation by Mir should not have gathered such attention of the news room unless some evidence was gathered. Such irresponsible and callow behavior must be checked.

            Yet, there is the other side of the picture which tells us that fascism is still the main characteristic of our military. The fact that all the products and services have been banned in all cantonments explains that autocratic roots are still deeply entrenched in our society. It is imperative that rule of law exists and only a decision by the court can result in such action. The military, or any other institution or individual, has no right to ban the inflow of information –whatever the information is- except through a legal and fair procedure. Otherwise, a wrong precedent would be set up which will encourage barbarism in the long term and provide further excuses for carrying out illicit actions against the media which would be synonymous to the decision taken in November 2007.

            What is more important is that both the institutions and their prominent personnel have demonstrated immature and callous behavior and condoned national interest. In the long term, rivalry and tensions between the two institutions will only procure negative consequences for the country. Besides, both will become more fragile and propagate and ideology which will aggrandize the disunity and instability in our society. Such tensions, furthermore, will only inhibit the progress and social evolution of our society.

            It is, thus, imperative that both the institutions realize the crucial role they play in the progress and development of the country and mould their behavior accordingly by restricting them to their respective domains and by realizing the significance of their roles. Mutual respect is the only way forward when there is a deadlock between two parties – or rather two institutions in this case. Carping and finding faults in each other or exploitation and suppression of one institution by another will only lead to chaos.

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