‘Of people and strength’: Five ways you can defend PPP

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The Pakistan People’s Party (PPP) is considered centre-left in the country’s political spectrum owing to its support towards public ownership, egalitarianism, equality and a strong national defence.

Since its foundation in 1967, it has been a major political left-wing force in the country. Although the party’s leadership has been dominated by the members of the Bhutto family, it has been voted to power on five separate occasions on the basis of the close affiliation it has had with the masses.

While the fate of one of the country’s largest political entities hangs in balance amid the entire fake accounts case fiasco against party President Asif Ali Zardari and co, here are five ways you can defend the PPP.

Too lazy to read the entire article? Watch the video:

5. Bhutto’s UNSC video:

On December 15, 1971, Bhutto walked out of the United Nations Security Council (UNSC) after accusing it of “legalising aggression”.

The then foreign minister Bhutto strode down the carpeted main hall past milling groups of surprised diplomats and was followed by seven members of his delegation.

While the positive and negative impacts of the move remain debated till date, it is a bit too hard to get over Bhutto’s boldness.

4. Call for maximum provincial autonomy:

PPP has always been a staunch supporter of provincial autonomy, which it proved by passing the 18th Amendment to the Constitution of Pakistan in 2010.

The 18th Amendment has led to a significant increase in provincial autonomy on the basis of ethnic diversity, multiple political parties and diverse political spectrum.

The major crux of the 18th Amendment with regards to political autonomy was the dissolution of 17 ministries, including education, food, agriculture and health, from the centre to provinces allowing the latter to formulate policies and projects in their own domain.

3. ‘Lionhearted’ leaders:

The PPP, in its own words, has always been led by courageous leaders; from its founding chairman, the late Zulfikar Ali Bhutto, to his daughter the late Benazir Bhutto.

While Zulfikar Ali Bhutto did not strike a deal during the dark days of dictatorship and preferred to lay down his life, Benazir returned to the country, knowing her life was in danger.

The unfortunate series of events that followed Benazir’s return are known to all, however, the legacy lives on.

2. Undeterred activism:

At a time when Pakistan witnesses a significant surge in political awareness, PPP is the only political party that speaks for the rights of people, including minorities, missing persons and women, while not succumbing to any pressure.

A recent example is Senator Mustafa Khokhar urging the authorities concerned to lodge the long-pending First Information Report (FIR) into the murder case of teacher and activist Arman Loni, who was allegedly killed in a police crackdown on peaceful protesters.

Raising its voice for the rights of minorities and openly speaking against the misuse of blasphemy laws, as now accepted by the state as well, is another reason for the PPP to be loved.

1. Senator Krishna Kumari:

PPP’s Krishna Kumari Kohli is the first-ever senator from a scheduled caste. Krishna was elected to the Senate after campaigning for women’s rights, having previously been forced into bonded labour for three years.

Hailing from Nagarparkar, a village in Tharparkar where women are to date deprived of basic facilities, Krishna continued to strive for a better future, all of which paid off after she was awarded a ticket to contest the polls for the upper house of the parliament by PPP in 2018.

She also chaired the Senate session on International Women’s Day 2019.

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