by John Rozario 31 May 2023
Pakistan’s former Prime Minister Imran Khan has said Bangladesh has moved far beyond Pakistan and there is a lesson that needs to be learned from the country.
“When a nation decides on freedom and its rights … when justice settles in people’s hearts … then whatever you do, even military operations, it doesn’t get out of their hearts. Because the seed of justice and freedom is within us,” he said.
In a live talk streamed on YouTube on Friday, Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf Chairman Imran Khan appealed for immediate talks with all state institutions to find a solution to put Pakistan on the path of progress, reports Dawn.
“The country (Pakistan) is heading towards an imminent disaster since hyperinflation is around the corner. But the incumbent rulers are least bothered as they have stashed the looted wealth abroad,” he said from his Zaman Park residence in Lahore.
Reuters says Imran Khan, who says corruption charges have been concocted, is embroiled in a confrontation with the powerful military, which has ruled Pakistan directly or overseen civilian governments throughout its history.
Khan was arrested and detained on May 9, sparking widespread protests by his supporters, and raising new worries about the stability of the nuclear-armed country as it struggles with its worst economic crisis in decades.
He was later freed on bail. In the video address, Mr Khan asserted that his appeal for dialogue should not be considered his weakness, adding that the physical and economic excesses being committed against the people of Pakistan was no solution. “The solution to the country’s problems rests in the state institutions functioning within their constitutional roles,” he said.
“Whenever I ask for a dialogue, the incumbent rulers think I am getting weak and they begin unleashing more excesses on PTI leaders and workers with the hope of crushing the party,” he regretted. He said no government could remove an ideology inculcated among the youth of the country.
He also warned the powers that be that they should exercise restraint as their attempt to crush the PTI could destroy the country. “No political party has ever witnessed such a barbaric action from the rulers,” he said.
Mr Khan said the country had already become a banana republic — a poor country with a weak government that depends on foreign money — because the rulers were not even respecting court orders to hold elections.
Pakistan’s politics has been turbulent in recent times. In the wake of the arrest saga of Imran Khan, there is now conflict-violence going on across Pakistan. This fragile country’s democracy is under new threat. Pakistan’s democracy is controlled by the army. And the position of the army is not clear now. But in the current situation of Pakistan, which is in a state of protest, the topic of Bangladesh is being raised. Imran Khan, the former prime minister of Pakistan and the one who is now at the height of tension, said that Bangladesh has not been treated justice. Former Prime Minister of Pakistan Imran Khan commented that justice was not done to Bangladesh in 1971. He said this while addressing the nation while undergoing treatment at a hospital in Lahore on Friday night. What happened to East Pakistan? The largest political party that won the election was repressed by the military, denied their rights. In this context, he further said that if the army could have united the nation, then East Pakistan would not have been separated in the past.
Imran’s comments have created a stir in Pakistani politics. Not only Imran Khan, but many politicians, intellectuals, civil society in Pakistan are repeatedly bringing up the issue of Bangladesh in their internal political affairs and using Bangladesh as an example. Why is Bangladesh being used in Pakistan’s politics? Looking for an answer to this question, political analysts say that in the context of Pakistan’s failure and fragile economy, Bangladesh is emerging as an emerging economic power, while Bangladesh is standing in front of the world as a development role model country. Rising again and again. In such reality, Bangladesh is a role model country in the world. Pakistan, on the other hand, is an example of a failed democracy infested by militants.
In all these realities, the topic of separation of Bangladesh and Pakistan is coming forward again and again. In various talk shows of Pakistan, in various newspapers, Bangladesh is now being praised, learning from Bangladesh is also being said. Pakistan’s current Prime Minister Shahbaz Sharif Khan also praised Bangladesh. Pakistan wants to become Bangladesh now. But analysts feel that no matter how much Bangladesh is involved in Pakistani politics, Pakistan has not apologized to Bangladesh for the genocide and persecution of the 1971s. Until Pakistan apologizes, relations between the two countries cannot be normal and normal. Moreover, Bangladesh is being cited as an example by Pakistan for a completely different reason. There are many questions, many inquiries among the young generation of Pakistan. And the politicians of Pakistan do not have answers to all those questions. In order to attract the young generation of Pakistan, the issue of Bangladesh praise is coming up again and again.
Political instability is responsible for this situation in Pakistan. Currently, Pakistan is reeling under an unprecedented economic crisis. People are desperate to buy daily necessities. Reserve is almost zero. Imports stopped due to foreign exchange crisis. Most of the factories are on the verge of closing due to energy crisis.
Due to the gas crisis, most of the power stations have stopped production, so the entire country is suffering from severe load shedding. Inflation is 27.55 percent, the highest in 48 years. A nuclear bomb in one hand, a begging bowl in the other.
From 1971 to 2009, Pakistan was far ahead of Bangladesh in most economic indicators. But after Bangabandhu’s daughter Sheikh Hasina came to power, the situation in Bangladesh began to change rapidly. In 1971, Pakistan was leading by 70 percent in terms of GDP per capita. But currently, Bangladesh’s per capita income is $2,824 (2022), while Pakistan’s per capita income is $1,671. During Pakistan’s 24-year rule, East Pakistan received only 17 percent of foreign exchange and the remaining 83 percent was spent in West Pakistan. Only 8 percent of bank deposits were received by East Pakistan and 92 percent by businessmen-industrialists of West Pakistan. Only 28 percent of the central government’s budget was spent on East Pakistan and 72 percent on West Pakistan. Bengali participation in Pakistan’s defense forces was only 5 percent. Only 11 percent of private sector factories in East Pakistan were owned by Bengalis, while the remaining 89 percent were owned by West Pakistanis or non-Bengalis. The three major cities of Pakistan were built Karachi, Rawalpindi and Islamabad by looting the resources of Bengal. When the defeat of the Pakistani rulers was confirmed during the war of liberation, the vaults of almost all the banks located in the country were broken and local money, gold and foreign currency were smuggled to Pakistan to destroy the economy of Bangladesh forever.
Bangladesh started its journey with zero reserves and has left Pakistan far behind in all economic and social indicators in just 50 years. Currently Bangladesh’s per capita income is almost double that of Pakistan’s. Foreign exchange reserves of Bangladesh are 34 billion dollars, Pakistan is 309 million dollars, which is more than 11 times. One dollar is equal to 107.35 Bangladesh taka, on the other hand, 276.50 Pakistani rupees. That is, one taka of Bangladesh is equal to 2.57 Pakistani rupees. The Bangladesh Taka is currently two and a half times stronger than the Pakistani Rupee. 100% of people in Bangladesh get electricity, 73% in Pakistan. The average life expectancy of the people of Bangladesh is 72.8 years, 66 years in Pakistan. Bangladesh’s literacy rate is 75 percent, Pakistan’s 59 percent. Bangladesh’s population growth rate is 1.2 percent, while Pakistan’s is 2.1 percent. Infant mortality rate in Bangladesh is 21 per thousand, Pakistan is 59. Women’s participation in the workplace is 38 percent, 23 percent in Pakistan. Poverty rate is 20.5 percent, 47 percent in Pakistan.
Bangladesh is one of the best economic countries not only in South Asia but also in Asia. Bangladesh is behind Pakistan in every economic and social index, in many cases it is even ahead of India. Pakistani economists, socialites and even politicians are often seen citing Bangladesh as an example. The ‘Bangladesh Model’ is being emphasized for development. According to the International Monetary Fund (IMF), Bangladesh is now the 35th largest economy. 25th in 2030 and 21st in 2041. Bangladesh had 75 percent more poverty than Pakistan in 1970, but now Bangladesh is 45 percent richer than Pakistan. Many Pakistani economists think that Bangladesh will have to seek Pakistan’s help by 2030.
Several articles have been published in the Pakistani media praising the leadership of Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina for the economic development of Bangladesh. There the government of Pakistan has been advised to learn from Sheikh Hasina. Bangabandhu’s daughter Sheikh Hasina has made Bangladesh one of the world’s fastest growing economic powers through sustained growth for 14 years. Voices are being raised in Pakistan, not Singapore or New York, make us Bangladesh.
In 52 years of independence, Bangladesh has managed to repay the debt of 3 million martyrs and 200,000 mothers and sisters by being ahead of Pakistan in all indicators. Pakistan is feeling the consequences of injustice, tyranny and oppression. It is the result of their actions.