Funny Jokers of Political Circus

In Pakistan an average of 20 Pakistanis die every single day in terrorist-related violence. Over the past seven years, total fatalities in terrorist violence stand at 33,467 Pakistanis. In 2010, 7,435 Pakistanis were killed in 473 bomb blasts and 49 fidayeen-type suicide attacks.
In Pakistan three out of four Pakistanis make Rs170 per day or less. Imagine; atta sells for Rs600 per 20-kg, ghee for Rs143 per kilo, tea Rs90 for 200 grams and red chili powder Rs64 for 200 grams.
Now, welcome to the circus. For our politicians Pakistan is one big circus. MQM is developing a specialty in acrobatics, somersaults to be specific – forward, backward and sideway somersaults plus 360 degree flips, feet over head. PML(N) is becoming a pack full of tightrope walkers some walking along thin ropes while others perform publicity stunts specifically designed to attract attention of voters – nothing much else.
JUI has assembled a trained bunch of jugglers. Their head honcho has become an expert in devil sticking, at times juggling with knives and fire torches, while his junior lieutenants juggle balls and beanbags. PPP, in the meanwhile, gets up every morning prints Rs300 crore worth of currency notes and by the time PPP is finished printing notes it’s already time to call it a day.
The Pak Army is fighting on so many fronts, and when it is not fighting it is either making movies about its fighting or playing the ringmaster – directing and stage managing our political acrobats, tightrope walkers and jugglers. Our ringmaster has all the political authority in the world and yet little political responsibility – best of the best some would argue.
The fact remains that Pakistan is burning. The other fact is that there is so much combustible material present right now that the conflagration is spreading like never before.
Who will put an end to the circus and put out the fire? Pakistan cannot remain Pakistan without drastic reforms – economic, social, political plus legal, and in that order. A trillion rupee annual deficit will burn us all and not just our skin but our muscles, bones and our blood vessels.
We all know what Pakistanis need: personal security, economic security and dispensation of justice. The circus must end or Pakistan will be burnt with her citizens in severe respiratory distress. Our acrobats, tightrope walkers, jugglers and note printers must come out of their tent and see the real Pakistan before the tent also catches fire. End the circus and assess the patient’s breathing, his airway and his circulatory state before it is too late.
Some of our democrats actually believe that democracy is the ‘art of running the circus from the monkey cage’. And then there are some who fiercely complain that Pakistani TV has turned our democracy into a circus. To be sure, the circus was already there, Pakistani TV just shows day-in-day-out that not all performers are up to the mark.

The writer is a columnist based in Islamabad. Email:

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