Well till now we have known ANP as Awami National Party, but rest assured that if they continue on the manifesto they have been following ever since they entered into power in 2008, soon they will be renamed to Anti Awami Party. There victory in the last elections was more due to the boycott of many mainstream forces of the province N.W.F.P and less to their past performance or future aspiration. I still recall days before the elections when one would see Mr. Asfandyar Wali in his fire brand style (no doubt an excellent orator) laying down the policy “to give a child a book instead of a suicide belt”. As well above one year has passed; it is hard to see any step in that direction, if they had this in mind any way.
Toward the governance one is left guessing regarding the decision making criteria of the party. Always claiming to be a secular all out, we saw them inking the deal with Maulana Fazalullah, only to be shattered in less than a week. While they can voice success at the top of their vocal limits in regards to the operation in Swat, yet in terms of transparency or justification ANP holds no credit for it. Most of their leadership fled before the crisis started and those who were left felt it was better to stay within the boundaries. At the peak of the crisis there were reports that a whole delegation left for Dubai on the invitation of a newly selected Senator on the ticket of their party. All along the relief and rehab effort that was going on around the country, ANP hardly contributed 5% in all and I remain first hand witness to it.
During the time when Swat was close to eruption and a pre emptive step would have been initiated, ANP was campaigning to change the name of the province. I once commented that it was a tradition in rural areas that in order to tame a notorious child, they change the name. So ANP was also counting on this formula to settle the security dilemma in the province. An issue which would have been resolved peacefully and with consent has been exploited to the maximum by the ethnicity card of ANP.
Just a day back their Minister Bilour was all out to change the entire moon sighting system of the country, and ironically he proposed the name too for the top office. While the attack on Mufti went un noticed, he quickly resorted to the old tactic of the ethnicity card by claiming that the federation doesn’t accept ant proof coming from their province. This was a baseless claim and there was no scientific or religious foundation that proved that he was right. Even the top metrologies of Pakistan went further and said that the moon was not visible in the South Asia that day.
In terms of the validity of claims coming from NWFP, let me remind you that every Pakistani believed what journalist like late Musa Khan Khel and Mr. Rahim ullah Yousafzai told about the Taliban atrocities, and there was no second opinion to it. So in order to hide the grave and unforgivable mistake they have committed, they are doing their best to divide this issue on ethnic lines.
As I write this, God knows why Mr. Asfandyar is accompanying the President in US during his trip for UNGA summit. It was quoted that the agenda behind this is to secure direct aid from US for Swat and other areas of the province. One is left guessing whether it’s an aid or a price for the continued drone attacks on the tribal belt. This act can’t be justified that you ask for compensation from the very force which is behind all this menace.
To sum up, the point here is to make it clear that in these testing times we do not need a force which flourishes on domestic exploitation and foreign blessing. At least in no way ANP’s policy depict the hospitality, pride and respect of Pakhtuns, which are so dear to them.