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Shaheed Benazir Bhutto: An inspiration

Tariq Khalique

ڈھونڈو گے اگر ملکوں ملکوں

ملنے کے نہیں نایاب ہیں ہم

I am one of those fortunate people who attended the wedding ceremony of Shaheed Benazir Bhutto back in 1987. That was the only time I saw her in person, but that was enough for me to get an inspiration.

Benazir Bhutto or BB, as was called by her supporters and well-wishers, will always be remembered as one of the strongest women, not only in Pakistan, but across the world, owing to her courage and the love for democracy. She occupies a unique place in Pakistan’s political history, as she was the force behind putting democracy back to the rails in the country after Martial Law Administrator and self-imposed President of Pakistan Zia-ul-Haq in 80s and President General Pervez Musharraf in early 2000.

 

 

 

 

BB was always surrounded by problems, whether her character assassination, resistance from the religious parties for being a woman to head a state and a refusal by army generals to salute a woman prime minister, but she did not lose hope and continued to work selflessly. She left behind a legacy, which inspires politicians to continue fight for the supremacy of the parliament, especially the democratic system. She was committed to democracy, woman and economic empowerment and social equality.

Never allowed to complete her terms in office for one reason or the other, BB never stopped making efforts for the revival of democratic system in Pakistan, as she used to say to her supporters and well-wishers that democracy is the best revenge and till her death she remained committed to this notion.

Being charismatic, she ruled the party with an iron hand on policy matters. She always wanted to make Pakistan a developed country in the comity of nations, and wanted the people to adopt democratic norms in their lives. BB was the true picture of bravery, liberalism, tolerance, change and never compromised on her ideology .

In her last speech at the Liaquat Bagh, Rawalpindi on December 27, 2007, BB Shaheed said: “I put my life in danger and came here because I feel this country is in danger. People are worried. We will bring the country out of this crisis.”

Benazir Bhutto remained a divisive figure throughout her political career. “I didn’t choose this life, it chose me,” she wrote in her memoirs, “Daughter of the East”, published in 1988.

BB’s vision for the future, “the path to a more stable Pakistan needs democratic reforms”, is the need of the hour. After her assassination, people have lost the hope for a real democratic Pakistan, at least for now, as the ruling party seemed uninterested in the egalitarian system, rather they only wanted to govern the country by hook or by crook.

I think if BB was alive today, she could have provided much better solutions to the issues being faced by the country than any other so-called ‘politicians’.

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