Media in Pakistan, despite of lots of restrictions is doing a great job. Private TV channels, if not entirely, but they have raised a sense of awareness among the masses. Due to their candid and matter-of-the-fact coverage of the events, now people know more than ever. People now have events unfolding in front of them first-hand.
Now, it has become very difficult for the government and opposition to do the silent under-hand deals, which get revealed to public after dozens of years. Now due to to the news, talk-shows, discussions and debates thing reach to public in no time, and public has now developed the capacity to sift the information from dis-information.
‘The Greate Debate’ on GEO is the first of its kind programme on GEO television. It was telecasted last night, and some legal issues regarding the election of President of Pakistan were discussed. From the government side, there were present government lawyer Ahmed Raza Qasuri and the minister for parliamentary affairs Dr. Sher Afgun. On the other panel, there were present sitting president of Supreme Court bar Muneer A. Malik and Justice (r) Tariq Mahmood. Two hosts Hamid Mir and Iftikhar Ahmad were facilitating the discussion. Lots of audience were also present.
Discussion drifted from one topic to the other. Both sides gave out their own opinions. Dr. Sher Afghan, as usual talking non-stop junk, whereas Ahmed Raza Qasuri was supporting the regime, which was no surprise as it was his duty. Muneer A. Malik was talking in usual calm and swinging style, whereas Tariq Mahmood was dynamic and emotional yet sounded very reasonable. Points and arguments were thrown from both sides, and the audience, which was quite large unanimously clapped for the panel of Muneer and Tariq.
Public is the better judge of who won the debate and who lost. But right at the end of the discussion, we saw a very sad yet very much familiar mentality. Ahmed Raza Qasuri, the government lawyer, just went crazy with rage without provocation, and started abusing Muneer A. Malik. I was stunned and looked at in utter disbelief at the TV screen where Ahmed Raza Qasuri, a senior and veteran lawyer, representing the Government of Pakistan was talking like a cheap rogue. Hosts tried to stop him, but he wouldn’t listen and kept on calling names to Muneer A. Malik. Then public started shouting ‘Shame, Shame’ to Ahmed Raza Qasuri, and Qasuri lashed back at public.
Initially I said it a ‘mentality’. It was the same mentality which man-handled the chief justice of Pakistan. It’s this mentality we need to change here in Pakistan, if we want to survive respectably in the cluster of nations.