Monday, 27 August 2012

Similarities and Differences Between the Neighbours

India and Pakistan are divided by the bloody past, but are united in the corrupt present.

The Pakistani PM, Raja Pervej Ashraf, or Rental Raja, as he is often referred by the Pakistani media has, for the moment avoided getting booted out of office by the Supreme Court, for not reopening a old graft case against the President.

A few hundred miles away, the Indian Prime Minister finds his hands and image blackened by the soot of corruption in coal.

The political class of India and Pakistan are divided by a hundred factors, but they come from the same school of corruption. The only difference is that the Indian politicians cannot cripple democracy with the sort of unlimited power that their Pakistani counterparts enjoy. They can hire the best lawyers to postpone the accountability to the judicial process, but would not dream of hampering the electoral process(Kudos to the Election Commission). On the other hand, in Pakistan, ballot is often subdued by the bullet.

The general public of both the nations(they are much better than the politicians) are utterly disgusted by the stench of corruption. Hence, every time somebody raises his voice against it, they automatically become eulogized and hero-worshiped.  Justice Iftikaar Chaudhry galvanized the general Pakistani to eventually oust the General(pun unintended). Across the border, India saw the rapid rise of Anna Hazare who caught the mass imagination to make the politicians shake in their boots.

Last time the Pakistani President visited India, I received a witty SMS. The President met the Indian PM and was asked to curb terrorism. The President replied, 'I am as serious on the issue of curbing terrorism as you are on the issue of curbing corruption'.

The Pakistani Prime Minister and the President are a joke in their nation. I hope the same is not the final eventuality of the Indian Prime Minister.

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