Pakistan People’s Party (PPP) co-chairman Asif Ali Zardari and former President of Pakistan while addressing a Kashmir conference in Islamabad has surprised the people when he sought the assistance of media to oust the incumbent government. In return Zardari promised to help media saying that their difficulties will be eliminated. This offer to media is due to the mounting pressure of NAB on corruption references without realizing that media has nothing to do in such cases. Media has no role in interfering in NAB cases neither in government’s decisions. They can only point out discrepancies. If at all relief will come it will be from NAB courts and nobody else. The other course is compromise between government and the affected party. PTI is already under criticism by society and its own party in compromising with PML N in appointing Shahbaz Sharif as chairman Public Account Committee,
The statement has come from a person no less than the former president of Pakistan who is co-chairman of the party who firmly believes in democracy and has always been in the forefront to fight dictators. This is very meaningful statement; there must be some sound reasons. Zardari known as king of reconciliation and a shrewd politician would not make such statement. May be he feels that media has become so strong that it can topple the government, but he is sadly mistaken. Such statements simply tell that the man is highly frustrated and instead looking for support from allied parties he is approaching media to help him. Undoubtedly media has assumed the role of fourth pillar of the state and has gained power but they are not so powerful to bring changes in the government.
A very famous media group in recent past was engaged in the character assassination of Zardari when he was president of Pakistan and would predict his down fall at regular intervals but we all know President Zardari completed his 5 year term very comfortably. It is true that media enjoys complete freedom of press but that does not mean they can do anything, they also have certain limitations. It is very strange that media has not reacted on Zardari’s statement in the manner they should have done. In fact all media houses should have protested against Zardari’s call to help him in overthrowing the elected prime minister of Pakistan but no such thing happened, therefore one can read in between the lines.
Sometimes back Bilawal Bhutto had claimed that they could change the government with the cooperation of other parties and that is understandable and is also the right way, but never sought help of media as done by his father. Presently there is total confusion about the accountability and cases instituted against certain politicians including cases on Nawaz Sharif and Zardari. Rumours have been spread about politicians using back door methods to get some type of concession named as NRO. Some anchors are holding discussion on the basis of statements of various leaders from both sides and drawing their own conclusions. Spokespersons of government are very firm and openly say that NRO is being requested by certain politicians but it has been denied by both the major political parties.But this chapter needs to be closed once for all as it is turning in to a big joke.
When there is state of confusion in both ranks, speculations galore. A state of uncertainty is prevailing and opposition leaders are busy in criticising the government and functionaries
What is the role of media? To keep people informed what is happening in the country in different segments of society and act as watchdog on national issues as well as keep an eye on the international front. While deliberating on any issue our eyes should always remain focused what is in the best interest of the nation and country. Politicians asking media to join in to topple a government is obviously bad but when a former President does that it means lack of political etiquettes and political maturity. Toppling may be well off the political turf of the country what the home audience is waiting for is the deal by Mr Zardari on the fake accounts case. That deal will actually move the media to spill all his corrupt beans that he has been collecting and holding so far. Our media is not that irresponsible and has to protect our core values as these are regarded as fundamental basis of creation of nation states who feel justified to defend their values.
Pakistan is our motherland and the last hope of our survival. The image of Pakistan must be well maintained and its prestige protected. This is only possible if media holds Pakistan in high esteem and does not allow any hostile propaganda against Pakistan or join hands with them. It must be understood what information is available through Google has been posted by vested interests and we must be careful while evaluating history. We have gained nothing by compromises except falling back to zero and situation getting bad to worst. It is now or never. In the words of Andrew Carnegie “THE” MORALITY OF COMPROMISE SOUNDS CONTRADICTORY.COMPROMISE IS USUALLY A SIGN OF WEAKNESS,OR AND ADMISSION OF DEFEAT.STRONG MEN DON’T COMPROMISE,IT IS SAID , AND PRINCIPLES SHOULD NEVER BE COMPROMISED.”
The writer is a freelance journalist and defence Analyst.