Deal or Dheel – Either way a political joke

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People are fed up hearing these two words” Deal or Dheel” for the last six months. These are repeated almost every day by ministers and leaders of opposition parties especially PML N and PPP. Minister for information Fawad appears to have phobia of these two words and use it as rhetoric. In fact when they talk about “Deal or Dheel” they mean that some sort of NRO is taking place , a very notorious term introduced by Gen Musharraf that paved way for return of Mian Nawaz Sharif from exile and Shaheed Benazir Bhutto from self exile with promise to get another 5 year term of President but nature has its own ways of settling matters. It proved a disaster for Gen Musharraf because the beneficiaries became so strong they forced him to either tender his resignation or face impeachment he chose the better option. Now Gen Musharraf accepts that it was his greatest blunder to give NRO to these two leaders and from other various parties and their workers that included withdrawal of thousands of cases of murderers, hard criminals and anti state elements. It is by itself a history how NRO damaged the country in the hands of a dictator. His compromise on Ishrat-ul- Abad to accept him as Governor of Sind has been the worst deal.

PPP ruled for 5 years good or bad but Nawaz Sharif’s tenure has been very disturbing and painful. During his tenure we saw the longest sit in of 126 days by PTI inD Chowk Islamabad thus created history of longest Dharna in Pakistan. While the confrontation was at the peek a bomb shell fell in the shape of Panama Leaks that resulted in disclosure of off shore companies owned by hundreds of Pakistani’s including Nawaz Sharif’s family members. But Nawaz Sharif being the Prime Minister had to clarify his position to the people being public office holder the sources of income, But wrong advise by his team and lawyers un necessarily and made the things difficult for him. As this was not enough he unnecessarily went on the wrong sides of the khaki’s. It is very strange that he has never been comfortable with any army chief whom he has been appointing himself.

Mian Nawaz Sharif was unseated as Prime Minister by Supreme Court and now facing corruption references. At the same time Asif Ali Zardari co- chairman of PPP is also facing corruption references filed against him on Benami accounts alleged to be the beneficiary of accounts. At present he is on bail.

Undoubtedly both leaders are under great pressure on account of documented corruption and as alleged by minister of information that both leaders are trying for NRO through under hand deal to get relief but Imran Khan is determined not to give any relief in the shape of fresh NRO. But NRO has become favorite subject of discussion. Both the leaders and their spokespersons have vehemently denied having approached the government for any such deal directly or through emissaries. In fact they are challenging the statement of ministers and want them to name leaders from opposition who have approached them for deal but government is silent on that and not disclosing the names. In Pakistan we have developed a system where by such news are intentionally spread through rumors and selective media to get views of the people.

On the face of it , it is politicking to keep people busy so that their attention remains diverted from real issues. Firstly there is no question of any deal by these leaders as it is too late now, secondly even if prime minister wishes cannot enter in to deal for simple reason that it is between NAB and accountability courts to decide the cases, therefore question of deal does not arise. Secondly if it is true that opposition leaders are seeking some concessions then it has to be on government terms but this may not happen because government cannot dictate courts or at this stage withdraws the cases. Apart from this there is no constitutional provision for entering into some agreement

Another point that is disturbing people is about the delay in cases. The nation as a whole is fed up from these high profile cases, the way they are being provided protocols while appearing in the courts has become a joke and is being much talked about in the world as it looks funny. Before it ends up a joke of the century these cases should be decided without further delay. Their inordinate delay in giving decision is causing great frustration to people. It is this delay that has given birth to deal or dheel and creating suspicion of under hand deal, you cannot stop people in drawing their own conclusions when such dramas are staged.

The writer is a freelance
journalist and defence Analyst.