Democracy in Pakistan-a Dilemma

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Against the backdrop of recent surge in political temperature, speakers at a roundtable discussion forum stress the need for continuation of democratic process despite of all the current challenges faced by it.

In a roundtable discussion forum “Political Expediency and the Future of Democracy in Pakistan” organized by the Center for Research and Security Studies (CRSS), at its office premises in Islamabad, issues and challenges related to current democratic governance and prospects of a democratic Pakistan were discussed in detail.

Mr. Ahmed Bilal Mahoob, executive director, Pakistan Institute of Legislative Development and Transparency(PILDAT) opened the discussion with an overly optimistic note and observed: “Democracy in Pakistan has never been as good as it is today.” He noted that it is the first time in history of Pakistan that three state pillars, those are Executive, Judiciary and the Legislature are carving out their respective ways out of this challenging political environment and it is a good omen for young democracy. In the past, judiciary was under the influence of executives, but now it is independent and assertive. Parliament in a democracy is always considered a vital state pillar, but again it tried to overpower the other state organs.

Against this backdrop, during the era of current democratic government, the growth of all state organs is continuous and stable. Likewise, during current democratic rule, for the first time, Senate was chaired by an opposition representative. Then if we look towards media, we have a robust and independent media, which explicitly does not seem under the influence of government. Coming to the democratic governance, Mr. Mahboob asserted the notion that there is widespread political discontentment and disillusionment among the masses. And ironically, the people have directed all their criticism and scathing towards federal government and spared the provincial governments altogether, whereas under the 18th...
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