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Is Bureaucracy Holy?

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Mesum Qasmi

The sacred Civil-Military bureaucracy hides colonial legacy if history is unveiled. After the inception of Pakistan, the economy of the nascent state was in turmoil. Therefore foreign aid was doled out to alleviate poverty and help elevate economic indicators of the country. Unfortunately, the aid was materialized to strengthen both civil and military bureaucracy behind the facade of external threats from the neighboring countries.

The officialdom and administrators were deployed to rule the public. Herculean efforts were made using public offices to atomize and stratify society for private gains. Tens of thousands of people migrated from India to Pakistan dreaming of a change but that change remained a tax code that rewarded those lobbyists who wrote it instead of the workers and small businesses who deserve it. Feudal lords and Industrialists started allying with bureaucracy in quest of power, authority and to reach parliament in exchange for giving clean chit to bureaucracy so that it could sugarcoat corruption and authoritarianism.

This process and the cycle lingered on for decades that eroded the whole state and its institutions from inside out. Moreover, the mundane’s narrative that the bureaucrats are carte balance. To some extent, this notion holds true because we the public, and our representatives created such a vacuum due to our incompetence and shuddering attitude. Bureaucrats are civil servants and they have to serve the public. It is pertinent to discuss here that winning a decent job through civil services doesn’t absolve civil servants from the responsibility to serve the people.

They may be held accountable for their corruption and misuse of power. We need to spread awareness in the public that no one is holy, above law and rules enshrined in the constitution. Everyone is law abide by citizens in this country. The events where only poor vendors on roads face the raging storms of bureaucracy and grave silence where its prompt input is required must be reported and highlighted. Why we allow civil servants to poison and sicken our system until their presence becomes a source of insecurity rather than comfort? The above question should be raised or debated in study circles and forums.

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Mesum Qasmi a telecom engineer with diverse national and international experience in the telecom sector. He belongs to the Gilgit district and blogs about various social issues of Gilgit-Baltistan.

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