By Wajid Shamsul Hasan
GARHI KHUDA BAKHSH: Prime minister Zulfikar Ali Bhutto was executed in the dark of the night and rushed for burial to Garhi Khuda Bakhsh in a C-130 as much secretly as professional thieves shroud their prize catch while transporting it to its final destination. Four judges of the Supreme Court from Punjab by ordering his judicial murder (despite an unequivocal acquittal by three upright judges from the smaller provinces who saw no merit in the case of his conviction on trumped up charge of murder) had been promised pelf and power by the general to permanently silence the man who spoke for the people and fought for the rights of the exploited and downtrodden.
Since his murder Bhutto continues to rule the hearts and minds of his people from his grave and has become immortal while those who removed him from the scene either lying buried in pieces under tonnes of filth or those alive live as the most despicable scum of the earth.
I am in Garhi Khuda Bux along with hundreds and thousands of the common folk from nook and corner of Pakistan who have gathered at the mausoleum of Bhuttos to pay their homage to those great sons and daughters of the soil who laid down their lives so that Quaid’s Pakistan could live forever.
On his death anniversary this year we are reminded again that his dearest daughter, too, has followed his path, gave her noblest blood to singe the beards of those enemies of Pakistan who want to convert Quaid’s liberal, progressive and secular Pakistan into theocratic state for the extremists, by the extremists and for the extremists with no room for liberal and progressive ideas. Like her iconic father, Benazir Bhutto also died for carrying forward the mission of Jinnah that included the sublime objective of the total empowerment of the masses irrespective of their caste, creed, colour of gender.
History cannot forget the prophetic words — to that effect in The Guardians (London) obituary on ZAB, the man is dead but he shall rule from his grave for ever and ever.
And there could not be more shameful historic irony for his killer Zia that Bhuttos name continues to be on the lips of every Pakistan as the national hero and the bravest of hearts nobody remembers the military dictator nor his gang of thieves who stole power from the people. And the burial place for his false dentures is popularly known as Jabra Chowk and has become a glorified rest room for the bus drivers who break their journey to wash and relieve themselves.
Despite hiccups, impediments and most difficult challenges Pakistan continues uninterrupted its roller-coaster ride on the road to democracy. With each passing day a newer silver lining appears on the dark horizon igniting a new hope for a better tomorrow. The nation is showing extraordinary resilience under the leadership of President Asif Zardari and Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani to continue to seek, strive and not to yield in its struggle to revert back to Jinnah’s Pakistan as opposed to the machinations of the religious extremist out there to destroy Pakistan to call it Darul Harab.
The recent events in the country have shown that our political leaders: both in the government and the opposition are not that immature to let things get out of their hands and matters go beyond the edge of precipice. President Zardari, Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani, opposition leader Mian Nawaz Sharif, MQM Quaid Altaf Hussain, ANP Chief Asfandyar Wali, JUI’s Maulana Fazlur Rehman and national institutions such as parliament and the military are working towards evolving a strategy to fight internal and external enemies to save Pakistan from the grab of extremist scavengers threatening to destroy Jinnah’s Pakistan that was envisioned as a modern democratic and progressive role model for the entire Muslim world. The News