In luckless Pakistan, power makes you complacent, at least.


For another day since the start of this week, I am forced to wonder, nonstop, as to why our media should pay any attention to what's happening in the National Assembly of Pakistan.

No doubt, 342 members had reached there while springing through the intense heat and fire that the elections of July 2018 had triggered. Fairly a large number of them comprised youthful first-timers to a directly elected house.

We sincerely expected them to furnish unbounded energy to its proceedings. Even if unable to find effective means of resolving our accumulated issues, they could at least shake the status-quo loving elite to wake up to them.

Power, they say, makes you corrupt. In our luckless country, though, it makes you complacent at least. And the same has happened to this National Assembly within 15 months of its existence.

After holding relatively brief and yawn-inducing meetings in the evenings of previous Monday and Tuesday, the assembly went for a two-day break. Lest you forget, such breaks during an ongoing session of the National Assembly are considered 'working days' and 'our representatives' are handsomely paid for them.

The cloud-covered Islamabad of these days looks gloomy; the bone-tickling air discourages you from moving out of heated rooms. Yet, I motivated myself to act brave.

Driving to Parliament House, I anxiously anticipated an impassioned debate in the house for locating the real causes of the mayhem Lahore had endured three days ago.

Our regular and social media could just not forget and forgive the anarchic scenes, the do-or-die looking showdown between two warring 'tribes' of young doctors and lawyers had produced in Lahore Wednesday.

Even amidst the viciously waged wars, hospitals are seldom attacked. But here a state of the art facility taking care of heart patients was recklessly attacked by an enraged mob of lawyers. During long hours of this attack, we failed to notice any presence of 'law enforcing' outfits. A historic city of vibrant millions rather looked as if abandoned to the furious whims of a barbaric mob.

Friday proceedings of the National Assembly made me wonder, however, whether Lahore was still a city of Pakistan. Appearing completely oblivious to what had happened there, only two days ago, the half-deserted house dealt with the Question Hour with business-as-usual type comfort. The House also delivered some 'legislative business,' close to the call for Juma prayers. That's about it.

The National Assembly would...

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