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11 Lessons to be learned from Pakistan!

By RK Rishikesh Sinha

For us Pakistan as a neighbouring country is headlines of newspaper reports and attention gripping media content. But lately my interest on this country went to such an extent that I watched almost all You Tube videos for weeks without timely food and sleep! To my dismay (and I must accept) that my knowledge about the country was insufficient and bare; I was living in a fool’s dream.

Today after 69 years of its independence, many commentators and think tanks describe the country in our neighbourhood as a ‘failed state’, a ‘toxic jelly state’, and some even go further saying it as a ‘paranoid state’ suffering from paranoia! And not to forget the country is also termed as a ‘terrorist state’.  The adjectives are given by Pakistani intelligentsia, media, foreign specialist on Southeast /sia, and our own journalist fraternity.

As I have said, Pakistan is indeed very interesting. While I was engrossed watching videos after videos, I thought to write about Pakistan. But the question was: what to write? Since everything is available in the Internet. Any possible angle that I would try to give to Pakistan is available in the media. So I came with this topic: Lessons to be learned from Pakistan’s mistakes. Pakistan has done many experiments (insensible) without being wise and practical. So what are the lessons that we Indians must learn from the mistakes of Pakistan.

Lesson No1: Don’t manipulate history in school textbooks

Pakistani establishment has been teaching distorted history to their children and it is still going on since the inception of the country. Take the instance, in their school textbooks it is written that Pakistan won the 1965 war and all the wars against India! Thing are worst, when in the 21st century, we hear Pakistanis are discussing (a) Mohammad Ali Jinnah views on Pakistan, (b) what is Pakistan --- secular, Islamist, a security state. The present generation still harbours anti-Hindu and anti-India sentiments. Even AQ Khan, who masterminded Pakistan nuclear bomb program carry anti-Hindu feelings.

Our take: We must have history that speaks the truth even if it hurts us. So that we can learn and understand better the world we are living today. However, any facts that go into the school textbooks that teach animosity towards religion, communities, languages, historical figures must be strongly objected.

Lesson No2: Disconnect State with religion

Pakistan was the first nation in the world to be created based on Islam! It went further and in the 1970s, the Ahmaddiyas were constitutionally declared non-Muslims! Today the country is in crossroad and it is in the confused state where to go forward.

Our take: The very essence of India, its secular pillar must be strengthened. We the Hindus, Muslims, Christians, Sikhs and others are one in the eyes of the nation India and we must uphold this uniqueness of India that is ‘unity in diversity’.
09/12/2016: Unfortunately, we have our imported 'secularism'. 

Lesson No3: A terrorist is a terrorist.

Pakistan describes people who take up guns by many names –jihadist (liberal jihadist/ Islamic jihadist), mujahidin, Pakistan Taliban, Afghan Taliban etc. who uses the terror tactic to further their ideological and political objective. There is an incident where a security guard kills a Pakistani Governor, and a section of people/party garland him for his act!

Our take: Those who take up violence against the nation are terrorists and they should be dealt hard.

Lesson No4: Stop Vandalizing and Violence

Many Pakistani parties with a drop of a pin call for bandhs, hartals and starts vandalizing shops and infrastructure.

Our take: At this front, we are in common with them. We must not choose or support our leaders who stop national highways, water supply and resort to violence. If it happens we are making our nation ‘Pakistan’. I don’t remember the name of the person who said Pakistan is not a nation; it is a state of mind!  

Lesson No5: Identity crisis

Pakistanis are suffering from deep identity crisis. The identity crisis is in many layers. They speak and write Urdu which is not the language of the land! Imagine a Bengali who is forced to speak Urdu. The result: emergence of Bangladesh as a new nation.

Out take: The Government of India must aggressively facilitate promotion and preservation of all Indian language and culture. So that everyone feels proud not only of his or her culture and language but to be a part of India we know.

Lesson No6: Mistakes, if done. Rectify it urgently

Someone rightly said about the history of Pakistan. It is of BLUNDER-PLUNDER-SURRENDER. The country has made hell lot of mistakes since its inception. And each and every mistake is what they are reaping today. Be it their policy towards USA or it is towards India.

Out take: Though we have our own bunch of mistakes that we did in the process of nation building. And we have not resolved it till today. Kashmir is one. It is an integral part of India, a legal claim. But still so much ears-deafening noise on Kashmir. As a nation we must solve problems on urgent basis that got created in the due course of time.

Lesson No7: Wipe out corruption

The zenith of corruption: Osama Bin Laden was found in Pakistan! The institutions of any state – judiciary, police, army, and many – are corrupt in Pakistan.  Corruption has become a social norm.

Our take: We must weed out that gives oxygen to the virus called ‘corruption’. Corruption must be tamed socially, technologically and other effective means. We are more or less in the same page.

Lesson No8: Be rational, pragmatic, scientific

Rationality of the people in Pakistan went bankrupt when the whole Pakistan – be it media, government, scientists – all went gaga over invention of a car kit through which water can be used to run it. Simply, running a car with water! It was highlighted by everybody even the scientific community took it seriously; imagine it became a topic in the cabinet meeting of the government. 

Our take: we have our own list of social practices and events that are irrational and unscientific. Witch hunting is one and there are many that we must get rid of at the earliest as a nation we progress.

Lesson No9: Embrace Soft Power

Pakistan doesn’t have soft power to showcase in the world map, except International Terrorism (IT)!

Our take: we must explore, experiment and exhibit to the whole world our soft powers. Except Bollywood, cricket, ITeS, yoga and spiritualism, we must have bouquet of soft powers in our arsenal that showcase India, a great nation.

Lesson No10: Invest on the people

Pakistan doesn’t invest on the education of its people. The state of affair of their education system seemed quite immature from my perspective when a newly convert Muslim is allowed to held a talk in an educational institution with a well-known Pakistani scientist, Parvez Hoodbouy. The topic somehow I could digest, but how the ‘foreign entertainer’ was allowed to hold a discussion in the precinct of a university on science. It was something like discussion between a scientist and a magician on Newton’s gravity.

Our take: For any nation, people are both assets and liabilities. India must aspire to create robust educational infrastructure through which visionaries of tomorrow comes out. The government of India and our society must prepare men and women who are capable to take up the challenges of the future.

Lesson No11: Choose leaders wisely

In the history of Pakistan, there is not a single leader who had a vision for the country. Today they not only doubt their Army, but their so-called leaders. They have been facing scarcity of leaders who in their heart's core had a vision about their people.
Our take: Well, in our case. There is a mix; after all it is a big country. I would say, the quality of leaders definitely have come down. As a citizen, we must cast our vote wisely.

If any of these mistakes are committed in India, we must get aware. At least, I would be aware.

Besides these, I found hard to digest many facts about Pakistan. I observed that it is a nation of conspiracy. They find conspiracy theories about everything under the sun. They cannot see things, as it is. ‘Sign of ultra intellect’ and no understanding. They think everybody is conspiring to destroy Islam, Muslims, Pakistan, and Pakistanis! A sure sign of paranoia.

Secondly, they feel our Indian Muslims brothers and sisters are in danger, they are being treated badly, and their faith is in danger in the world’s largest secular democratic country called India. This is something that brings my heart out of my mouth. In my existence on this earth, personally I never found that it is true. I pray, Pakistanis to forget about Indian Muslims. They are Indian first. Moreover, Indian Muslims are smarter and intelligent than their Pakistanis counterpart.

Thirdly, their national obsession about Kashmir; I find they are still clinging on the two-nation theory on Kashmir valley. It amuses me to see their psychological drama on Kashmir. I would advice, ‘forget Kashmir, come to reality’. Stop the psychological drama in your brain; it has become pathogenic.

There are many like this.

To conclude, it is true that the world is eyeing on Pakistan with squeezed eyes. However, there are few conscientious, intelligent, and brave people in Pakistan who see the bigger and real picture of their country. They are very brave to say a spade a spade while living in a violent, Kalashnikov culture of Pakistan. Their commentary on their country’s state of affair is excellent, eye-opening and practical. One must watch Pervez Hoodbhoy, a soft-spoken Pakistani nuclear scientist. His commentary and understanding on various topics has impressed me a lot. His one of his discourse inspired me to write this article.

Hassan Nisar, a journalist and columnist is one another personality. He is a must-watch angry Amitabh Bachchan figure with a heavy voice, and no-non sense approach. One would equate him as a strict, aggressive teacher who cannot see or listen something that is wrong.

Tarek Fateh, a Pakistani-born Canadian citizen, a writer and a speaker. I found he is multifaceted, jovial, and serious, and at the same time gives impression of a person in next door. To describe him, he is a Hindu by soul, Muslim by birth, and liberal in outlook. He is anti-Pakistan!

Najam Sethi, a journalist, is another person, I didn’t watch more about him. But he is one among those who puts forth the Pakistan’s history and current affairs accurately and objectively.

Today India is the youngest country. It means the onus is on the youngsters to lead the nation ahead with clarity of thoughts and broader perspective. At the end of this article, I am thinking we have many challenges before India. What today we see, is the result of our founding fathers’ vision.  They thought about the nation above them, but what next. I don’t have any answer. However, here are three videos. Please watch.

India SWOT Analysis Part 1 - Strengths and Weaknesses - Dr. Kiran Bedi with Sadhguru
India SWOT Analysis Part 2 - Opportunities and Threats - Dr. Kiran Bedi with Sadhguru
Bharat: What Makes Us a Nation? - Dr. Kiran Bedi with Sadhguru


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