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Sunday, October 29, 2017

Bad Governance and Anarchy



Illustration by Abro

On ‘Anthropology and Politics’ seminar, one of the speakers said about anarchy. The anecdote that my colleague shared was about his father. He said that back in 1971, just days after the country lost its eastern wing (East Pakistan), someone stole the back tyre of his father’s motorbike. His father visited a nearby police station to report the incident but found the station extremely quiet. He said the cops were just loitering around, doing nothing. What’s more, the SHO refused to register a complaint against the tyre theft.

The SHO told his father that even if he did pen his complaint, it will remain on his table because “there is no government left.” My colleague was told by his father that everything seemed to have ground to a halt. Yet, there were no riots or looting. This little piece of information reminded me of the German anthropologist’s lecture during which he had explained that when a state collapses, and it seems there is no government left, a country does not immediately fall into anarchy. He added that it may actually take months for a collapsing country to slide into total social, economic and political chaos.

According to the anthropologist, this occurs because even though governance and the state itself have collapsed, the perception (in people’s minds) of their being strong institutions and in control remains ingrained for months. It is when this perception begins to erode that the country plunges into anarchy. The anthropologist had given examples of Bosnia and Somalia, saying that in these countries the state and government’s writ had begun to corrode and evaporate months before these realms eventually plunged into complete anarchy.

When there seems to be no government left, a country does not immediately fall into anarchy

I had initially not thought much about what my colleague had related to me. But after recalling the German professor’s lecture, I did wonder, what the SHO had meant when he told my colleague’s father, “There is no government left.” When did that happen in Pakistan?


I could not pinpoint such a claim anywhere when I looked through old newspapers from December 1971 or in books written about the immediate aftermath of the East Pakistan debacle. But only last week, while going through Hamid Khan’s excellent book Constitutional and Political History of Pakistan, I was taken aback when (in a chapter on the East Pakistan civil war) he writes that between December 18 and 20, 1971, “The country was virtually without a government.” Had this situation triggered riots and violence, I am sure it would have been more robustly documented, but the country had remained calm. This can also be explained by the German professor’s theory and observation that even when a government or state collapses (thus creating a huge political and social void) society does not immediately fall into this void. The mind takes some time to register the collapse because it is initially conditioned to believe that there is always someone on top in control.
By Farid Piracha ... Dawn.com

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علم اور افہام و تفہیم کے لئے ایک غیر منافع بخش ای فورم ہے. علم،انسانیت، مذہب، سائنس، سماج، ثقافت، اخلاقیات اورروحانیت امن کے لئے.اس فورم کو آفتاب خان،  آزاد محقق اور مصنف نے منظم کیا ہے. تحقیقی کام بلاگز، ویب سائٹ، سوشل میڈیا، میگزین، ویڈیو چننل اور برقی کتابوں کی صورت میں دستیاب ہے.اس  نیٹ ورک  کو اب تک لاکھوں افراد وزٹ کر چکے ہیں, مزید تفصیلات>>>  Page Index - Salaam One 
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 مزید پڑھیں: 
  1. مسلما نوں اور علماء کے نام کھلا خط : آج کے حالات میں مسلم معاشرہ نظریاتی  ابتری اور انحطاط کا شکار ہے. مادہ پرستی، دہشت گردی، عدم برداشت، اور جہالت انسانیت، امن اور مذھب کے لیے خطرہ بن چکے ہیں- ان حالات میں صاحب علم و ذی فہم حضرات سے ممکنہ حل کی توقع کی جا سکتی ہے. ہمارا مقصد ہے کہ آپ کی توجہ ضروری حل پذیر مسائل کی طرف مبذول کرنا ہے تاکہ جلد حل تلاش کیا جا سکے- آپ کی توجہ اور مدد سے ہم کوشش کر سکتے ہیں کہ معاشرہ کو اس  گہری دلدل سے نکال سکیں. مکمل خط اس <<< لنک پر پڑھیں>>
  2. نظریاتی اور فکری کنفیوژن اور ممکنہ حل

  3. خطبات اقبال - اسلام میں تفکر کا انداز جدید Reconstruction of Religious Thought in Islam-  http://goo.gl/lqxYuw
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