Wield­ing In­flu­ence?

Southasia - - Editor’s -

It is very im­pres­sive that of all the po­lit­i­cal lead­ers to have been in­vited to speak at the Hin­dus­tan Times Lead­er­ship Sum­mit in New Delhi, former Pres­i­dent Pervez Mushar­raf was the cho­sen guest. De­spite the fact that Mushar­raf no longer re­sides in Pak­istan, he none­the­less com­mands great in­flu­ence and rel­e­vance in na­tional pol­i­tics. Mushar­raf’s era stands in stark con­trast to the dif­fi­cult times be­ing faced by the peo­ple of Pak­istan cur­rently. Not only is he viewed as a strong leader who un­der­stands mil­i­tary strat­egy but also has a re­mark­ably pos­i­tive and rel­a­tively sta­ble era to show for his pe­riod of government. To­day when Pak­istan’s lead­ers ex­ploit the coun­try for their own per­sonal gains and de­grade its rep­u­ta­tion on an in­ter­na­tional plat­form, it is re­fresh­ing to hear a man like Pervez Mushar­raf ad­vo­cate Pak­istan’s cause and brighter fu­ture, even in the dark­est of times. Im­prov­ing re­la­tions with In­dia is of para­mount im­por­tance if Pak­istan is truly com­mit­ted to im­prov­ing its so­cioe­co­nomic po­si­tion. While the Army has, time and again, been ac­cused of play­ing a dou­ble game, Mushar­raf’s think­ing could sig­nify some­what of a shift in na­tional se­cu­rity strat­egy. This will how­ever re­main mar­ginal un­til the Gen­eral does not re­turn home to phys­i­cally pro­mote his agenda.

Mehrukh Khan Karachi, Pak­istan

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