Wednesday, February 29, 2012

The Trial Ploy of Benazir Bhutto’s Grave

February 29, 2012

By Saeed Qureshi

Can anyone, by any stretch of imagination, establish a moral or legal connection between late Benazir Bhutto’s grave and the reopening of the Swiss bank accounts allegedly maintained in her and her spouse Asif Ali Zardari’s name, now the president of Pakistan, speculatively for laundering the ill-gotten wealth?

My head starts spinning while making a forced attempt to endorse the espoused stance of the PPP leadership on this sordid issue, hanging fire for a long time. It is exceedingly onerous for me to agree with their contention that reopening of the cases would be tantamount to the trial of BB’s grave.

It is perhaps for the first time that I have heard the trial of a grave. I cannot exonerate, even if I diligently want to, the holders of these bank accounts with fabulous deposits of black money stated to be as mammoth as $60 million or more.

By attempting to stall a genuine judicial process under the specious plea of terming it as a trial of BB’s grave, the PPP leaders are whipping up a sentimental exploitation of the party’ grass-root supporters and unswerving adherents in order to gain popular support in favor of their frivolous contention.

But by doing so, they are making themselves a laughing stock and objects of ridicule and derision. Besides, their flimsy escapism would be viewed as a crude attempt to scuttle the due process of law. Such elephantine cases of blatant and naked abuse of authority for facilitating shady deals and bilking the country cannot be pushed under the rug or left undecided for all time to come.

There has never been a firm denial of the existence of these dubious offshore accounts that Asif Zardari and her deceased spouse also twice the prime minister of Pakistan, maintained in Swiss banks. The prosecuting Pakistani governments had filed these cases against the couple with claims that the money stashed in the Swiss banks was obtained through clandestine kickbacks commissions in return for sanctioning or facilitating mega contracts. These uncanny deals have been in the limelight all along, and reported and analyzed innumerable times in both Pakistani and international media.

The National Reconciliation Ordinance (NRO) inked on October 5 2005, between now exiled president general Pervez Musharraf and late Mohtrama Benazir Bhutto was laden with various self-serving motives on part of both the signatories. General Musharraf needed a political resuscitation for his dwindling rule while the other party wanted to whitewash their corruption cases and get a baptized re-entry into Pakistan’s political arena. It was indeed an odious marriage of convenience between the two parties.

The NRO granted blanket amnesty inter- alia to politicians, political workers, ambassadors, businessmen and bureaucrats who were involved in bribery scams, terrorism, embezzlements, money laundering, and assassinations between January 1, 1986, and October 12, 1999: the period of civilian government between two martial laws in Pakistan. The Supreme Court of Pakistan declared NRO unconstitutional on December 16, 2009.

But with the decline and unceremonious (barring the military guard of honor) departure of Pervez Musharraf from the pinnacle power saddle and the demise of Benazir Bhutto in a terrorist attack, the linchpin of this high profile corruption saga Mr. Zardari, by a stroke of incredible luck, replaced the outgoing president as the elected president of Pakistan.

The cover up of the money laundering cases was primarily to be ensured by the ousted military president. But with the assumption of the presidency by the main suspect, even the remotest chance for reopening of these cases has been quashed. Why would a suspected culprit hang unnecessary yet avoidable stranglehold around his neck?

A total of 19 corruption cases were instituted against Bhutto and her husband during 1990–92 period. Some of the high profile corruption cases include Zardari’s offer of exclusive rights to Dassault, a French aircraft manufacturer, to replace the air force's fighter jets in exchange for a 5% commission to be paid to a Swiss corporation controlled by Zardari. Another was the purchase of 8000 tractors from Poland for launching “Awami tractor scheme” that brought a windfall of $ 2 million in kickbacks.

It is also alleged that a Dubai based company received an exclusive license to import gold into Pakistan for which Asif Zardari received payments of more than $10 million transferred into his Dubai-based Citibank accounts. The owner of the company denied that he had made any payments to Zardari. He also vowed that in this regard, the documents were forged.

After the return to power of Pakistan People’s Party, the Swiss cases were withdrawn by the government in August 2008. Correspondingly, the Swiss judicial authorities had closed the money-laundering cases against Asif Ali Zardari and released $60 million frozen in Swiss accounts. According to certain estimates the amount that was allegedly received by the couple by way of bribe and commission and misappropriation national exchequer during the PPP’s two stints in power could be as high as $ 1.5 billion.

The supreme court of Pakistan decreed that the letter earlier written to the Swiss banking authorities for closing the money laundering cases should be withdrawn. The purpose of the Supreme Court was to find out through fresh proceedings, if the allegations were false or factual.

Since prime minister of Pakistan Yusuf Raza Gilani has dithered to execute the Supreme Court orders, he has been arraigned for contempt of court eclipsing his future and completing tenure of office as the head of the government. It is one of the worst crises for its survival that the incumbent government of PPP is trapped in.

As such the lingering cases of Swiss bank accounts of president Asif ali Zardari, have assumed two-fold dimensions: one to decide about the veracity or otherwise of the stupendous allegations and the other that of contempt of court against the prime minister for not complying with the supreme court’s orders.

In a recent interview with the noted GEO TV anchor Hamid Mir, president Zardari described the Swiss cases as part of history and expressed a firm refusal of approaching the Swiss banking or legal authorities to reopen the closed cases.

He argued that his party does not want such a letter to be written to the Swiss banks since it would be tantamount to a trial of the grave of the martyred PPP’s chairperson. Nevertheless, he opined that the next government that would be in place in another 15 months or so could reopen these cases by writing such a letter.

Such a deviant stand by the president and his party echelons, defies the commonsense and undermines a legal process that has been geared to determine if such a huge money making scam through foul means, had actually happened or not. The verdict in favor of president Zardari would revive and re-establish his tattered image of a corrupt person.

Instead of terming it as a trial of Benazir Bhutto’s grave, the reopening of the controversial cases should be rather welcomed by Mr. Zardari and his party. BB’s soul too would rest in eternal peace if her spouse gets himself and her exculpated by the court. Also thereafter Mr. Zardari would be like a newborn child and be able to lead an aspersion-free life.

Imran Khan’s Metaphor ‘Tsunami’ is a Misnomer

February 27, 2012

By Saeed Qureshi

The term variously used by the chief of the Pakistan Tehrik Insaf (PTI) Imran Kahn, as a signature symbol and a promotional slogan for his hyping political campaigning is patently a misnomer. The energy and optimism-filled chief of PTI, is mistakenly using the term Tsunami to portray a colossal change that his party aims at bringing about in Pakistan. Tsunami is a natural disaster for destruction while Imran Khan means a constructive change of the tsunami proportions.

As such while he is trying to project himself as a revolutionary and a national redeemer, he is inadvertently claiming to be a prophet of doom and trumpet blower of a catastrophe as the world witnessed in utter horror, in Japan last year.

He would be well advised to modify his catchy phrases employed to gravitate and lure the people of Pakistan towards his party. A common man who likes him and might be favorably inclined to vote for his party is, believably ignorant of the essence and destructive nature of this term.

When this huge tidal wave sweeps across the coastal line, it destroys and levels off anything that comes in its fold. The tsunamis are agents or catalysts of pillage, death and destruction and not the kind of salubrious changes as being attributed by Imran Khan to this metaphor.

Imran Khan perhaps harbors the misconceived notion that the Tsunami sweeps and washes away the rot, waste, filth and squalid stuff spread over the coastal areas or beaches, and makes them clean and sparkling. The outcome of Tsunami is however the opposite of this convoluted view, because the galloping sheet of water litters the area with huge stockpiles of debris of fallen houses and trees; carcasses of both humans and animals and thick layers of slush and mud.

As we all know the natural disasters mainly floods, earthquakes and wildfires, do not discriminate between the followers of God and the disciples of Satan or in simpler phraseology the good and the bad people or the virtuous and the sinners. The Tsunamis with their mammoth tidal waves overlap everything in their way: humans, dwellings, the trees, the industrial infrastructure and even the nuclear reactors as the Tsunami of March11, 2011 did in Japan.

Besides other horrifying destruction, it knocked down the three reactors in Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant complex. The tsunami generated by the 2011 Tohoku earthquake caused 16000 deaths, damaged around 125000 buildings and hurled an estimated loss of $ 35 billion. A staggering amount of $ 400 billion was pooled by Bank of Japan and the World Bank for rehabilitation and reconstruction.

However, the deadliest earthquake that occurred in the recent history was the so called, 2004 Indian Ocean Tsunami, (also labeled as South Asian Tsunami, Indonesian Tsunami, and Boxing Day Tsunami). That 98 feet Monstrous wave killed over 230,000 people in fourteen countries, including India, Sri Lanka and Thailand besides the main hardest-hit Indonesia.

There have happened in history, countless tsunamis both recorded and unrecorded and none of these were beneficial either for men or the environement. Some of these as that of 2004 Indian Ocean and the 2011 Tohoku Earthquake in Japan have been so powerful as to jolt and shift the earth’s axis by a few centimeters.

It would be certainly desirable and rather preferable if Imran Khan replaces the metaphor of Tsunami by a plausible, more meaningful and candid epithet. These could “Pakistan Spring”, the Pakistan Revolution or Grassroots revolution, the “People’s Revolution” or similar expressions to drive more emphasis and meaning into what Mr. Khan and his party stands for.

Imran Khan being a relatively fresh entrant in political arena, with a clean reputation is decidedly appealing to the masses that throng to his party’s rallies and public meetings in large numbers. He offers hopes for setting right the mess and chaos that have caved into the foundations of Pakistan. The people, on the whole are, disgruntled with the traditional lot of politicians that have been tried several times before, and who despite their tall pledges for betterment, protect and nurse the ruinous status quo when in power.

Perpetuation in self aggrandizement, safeguarding clannish interests and monetary enrichment through fair and fouls means, remain their driving penchants. As such the hyperbolic slogans and the bloated manifestoes of the parties for transforming Pakistan into a stable, viable, strong and sovereign state with a modern and thriving society have remained unfulfilled. Deplorably, the ground situation has remained without any change except for the worse.

It would be an unnecessary refrain and futile repetition to enumerate the limitless sufferings of the hapless people of Pakistan ranging from a dirty, primitive, degrading environment to denial or shortage of basic utilities and social services that make a society modern and progressive.

The leaders at the helm, the parliamentarians, the army generals, the senior bureaucrats and the individuals in powerful positions ignore the woes of the people and busy themselves in nepotism, cronyism, milking the nation exchequer, granting contracts to the highest bribe givers, raising their allowances and manipulating hefty development funds.

So in such a persistently bleak and hope-drained milieu, when a ray of hope appears on the horizon, the people welcome it readily. In case of Imran Khan, it is primarily uncertain, if he could win the general elections and muster enough electoral strength to form a government of his party. In case of a divided popular mandate, he will have to forge a coalition government.

In a coalition set up, one can have neither a free will nor independence in making the desired and far reaching decisions. If he cannot attain the majority, the dream and drive of transforming the destiny of the people of Pakistan and taking the country out of the dire straits, would remain unrealized and elusive.

The paramount question that stares right in our face is: where would then we go from here? It could be to strive for a change by spearheading a Pakistan spring like the one sweeping across the Arab world. In that situation, the ordinary citizens will face state repression and brutality unleashed by the coterie in power.

In case, the reprehensible status quo remains intact and the traditional politicians return to power, is Imran Khan and his party ready to mobilize people, launch a countrywide movement to usher bedeviled Pakistan into an era of real revolution. Only then can he do away with the moribund governance and remodel Pakistan.

He should know that a revolution like “Arab Spring” is not a garden party. It comes through countless sacrifices, after a long drawn struggle by the masses under a committed leadership and indeed by facing the bloodshed carried out by the ruling clique.

Saturday, February 25, 2012

Let there be a Referendum in Balochistan

February 21, 2012

By Saeed Qureshi

In the wake of inexorably heightening insurgency and swelling separatist movements in Balochistan, the most direct and anecdotal recipe of this festering wound is the holding of a rereferendum without further loss of time. If the government believes that there are a few handful, anti-federation and secessionist elements, it should go into the preparation of such a referendum to elicit from the Baluchis whether they would wish to stay within the federation of Pakistan or become independent.

The Chaos in Balochistan is a mammoth challenge and might become a replay of former East Pakistan if not addressed as the outstanding and top most priority issue. Because of escalating fires of insurgency, the territorial integrity, the writ and sovereignty of state of Pakistan is at stake. How long would the agencies and the army run this volatile province with terror, oppression, intimidation, ruthless persecution and horrific extra judicial killings?

While taking such a crucial decision and announcing it well in advance of the projected referendum, the government can withdraw the bulk of the dreaded military and para-military network from Balochistan, that has come under burgeoning scrutiny and censure even from such elements who do not want to see this land being cut off through an armed struggle, rebellion or insurgency from the rest of Pakistan.

In 1971 Pakistan lost the Eastern wing, and now the biggest, geographically contiguous and strategically crucial part seems to be moving towards the verge of breaking away. The catching of this wild bull by horn is also indispensible as later it could prompt other two provinces; Sindh and NWFP to follow suit; not immediately yet in the longer run. Let us not repeat the blunder that Pakistanis military and civilian leadership committed in case of erstwhile East Pakistan.

If the separatist elements that are being supported and abetted with weapons and money and propaganda, by foreign inimical forces one of which is India, Pakistan may finally disintegrate and all the four provinces might also become independent states. This dreadful scenario might entail Punjab taken over by India and annexed with the East Punjab. India can also slice away a portion of Sindh. Pakhtunkhwa may also opt for independence. Thus Pakistan as a state would disappear from the world map.

The paramount interests of China, a trustworthy and all weather-friend of Pakistan, would also suffer, as the New Baloch government would likely be dancing on American and Indian tunes. The root cause for America and India to foster and foment insurgency and perpetual instability in Balochistan is the Gawadar port that was built by China and can serve as a huge facility for China for overland trading, besides exercising massive influence in the Persian Gulf precincts.

A volatile Balochistan ultimately getting out of the federation of Pakistan and emerging as an independent country would be a protégé of both America and India. That eventuality can provide them a rare and unique opportunity to destabilize Iran and also keep a watch over Afghanistan, the Central Asia and the Strait of Harmuz.

Balochistan has remained neglected and no meaningful and far reaching policies, projects or plans have ever been contemplated to take this region out of poverty, create widespread road network to link it with the rest of Pakistan, set up industries to provide jobs to the local population and explore the hidden natural resources with allocation of major share of proceeds and income to the province. Balochistan is as rugged, obsolete and backward as it has even been, before and after the inception of Pakistan.

The dream of the separatist elements for creation of greater Balochistan cannot be realized as Iran would not relinquish her hold over their part of Balochistan. In comparison to Pakistan, Iran’s control over their part of Balochistan is firm and unshakable.

A referendum would make it manifest for all time to come if the Baluchis would wish to stay within Pakistan or go their own way. Keeping in view the ethnic divide and almost the equal proportion between Baluchis and Pashtoons and some 20 per cent non Baluchis races living in Balochistan, the verdict or the outcome of such referendum would not be entirely in favor of the secessionists.

But as long as that is not proven through the referendum, the secessionists would not recoil from their demand which can even gather more steam if this incendiary issue is not dealt with politically and by getting a fresh mandate via the popular opinion.

There are several precedents of such referendums. One of these outstanding referendums was conducted in Canada for eliciting the choice of the French speaking citizens in Quebec province whether they wanted to be independent or remain within the Canada. Incredibly and against all predictions, the Quebec residents decided to live within the commonwealth of Canada and this thorny and perennially troubling issue for Canadian federation was resolved once and for all.

Referendums on independence as demanded by Party Québécois were conducted in 1980 and1995. Both were voted down by voters, the latter defeated by a very narrow margin.
In 2006, the Canadian House of Commons passed a symbolic motion, the Québécois nation motion, recognizing the "Québécois as a nation within a united Canada.

The Balochistan conflict is the offshoot of the accession of Kalat with Pakistan in 1948 by the then Kalat ruler Mir Ahmed Yar Khan. Prince Abdul Karim Khan (the brother of Mir Ahmed Khan) who had rejected the Khan of Kalat's decision to accede to Pakistan led a small fighting force to restore the independence of Kalat state but was subdued by the Pakistan army.

That conflict was followed by four more subsequent similar conflicts by Baloch dissidents. The second conflict was spearheaded by Nawab Nowroz khan in 1958-59.The third was started by She Muhammad Bijrani Marri in 1963-69.The final and the fifth organized insurgency was launched in 2004 by Nawab Akbar Khan Bugti and Mir Balach Marri in the wake of which Nawab Bugti was killed in August 2006.

On August 12, 2009, Khan of Kalat Mir Suleiman Dawood declared himself ruler of Balochistan and set up a Council for Independent Balochistan that contains "all separatist leaders including Nawab Bramdagh Bugti. The Council's also claimed Baloch territory in Iran besides that of the Pakistani Balochistan. However, it excluded the Afghan Baloch regions.

The cessation movements braced against Pakistan’s federal government, its army and are active for creating an independent Balochistan, are varied and multiple. These are Parrari (later replaced by BPLF), Baloch Republic army, Baloch Autonomist Movement, Baloch Peoples’ Liberation Front, Balochistan National Liberation Front, Balochistan National Movement and Jundullah.

Jundullah is alleged to receive support from the United States against the government of Iran, although the US denies any involvement. It is a militant entity that is based in Balochistan and is fighting for the rights of Iranian Taliban in Afghanistan. The other supporters of Jundullah are said to be the Iraqi Intelligence Service, Pakistani Sunni extremist group Sipah-e-Sahaba Pakistan and the Mujahedin e-Khalq.

Although Balochistan is the largest (44% of the country's area) region of Pakistan, it is the least populated (8 million population) and the least developed area. The demographic complexion is rather diverse that might provide a saving grace and a cushion to federation to rescue the situation from a total collapse.

The Baloch speaking population that is fully involved in insurgency or rebellion is around 40 per cent of the total population. The Pashtu speaking population has the same percentage of 40 per cent. The remaining segments like Sindhis, Punjabis, Siraiki and Brohi are around 20 per cent.

Prime Minister Yousaf Raza Gilani’s announcement to soon hold an All Parties Conference on Balochistan is a belated yet good decision to attend to this most delicate and pressing issue. But this initiative would remain a non starter unless voluminously represented by all shades of public opinion and wider array of political parties and even the separatist groups.

The inclusion of separatist groups in such conference can be least expected but the political parties from Balochistan should be motivated and persuaded to take part for finding some resolution of this mess that if not handled dexterously would land Pakistan into a geographical catastrophe.

It would be difficult for Baluchis and Pashtoons to be unanimous on one united Balochistan even if they manage to secede or given maximum autonomy through a political process. The Pashtoons deem themselves as a different ethnic entity and their rivalry with Baloch race is deep rooted and trenchant. As such one can anticipate a long civil war between the Baluchis and Pashtoons if the separatist movments somehow succeeds in wresting away this largest province from the rest of Pakistan.

The Balochi revolutionaries, nationalists and rebels would not be able to capture the Iranian part of Balochistan no matter they fight for ages. Iran would not tolerate the chunks of their territory torn away by Baloch separatists to make that a part of greater Balochistan.

The Baloch secessionists should eschew the foreign support for separation as their interest could be best served by remaining allied with Pakistan as was proclaimed and consented by them at the time of the creation of Pakistan in August 1947.

As such the best way-out for disparate and myriad separatist Baloch liberation movments and groups is to live within the federation of Pakistan and demand an autonomous status as was given to Quebec by the Canadndian federation. One of the stipulations of this autonomy should be a major portion of income from their natural resources and control of those resources by Baluchis themselves.

Keeping in view the tribal nature of Baloch society and their colliding interests, Balochistan, in case of an independent land, would turn into another Afghanistan with an interminable civil war between the war lords and tribal chiefs and Sardars for sway and control over the country. Thus what they could achieve through a separatist movement would be wasted away by internal feuds and fighting, exposing that vast land, once again, to further disintegration.

Pashtoons claim parity between themselves and Baluchis and want to be part of Khyber Pakhtoonkhwa. Pashtoons and Baluchis have been separated into different administrative units till 1970. Balochi population is concentrated in the sparsely populated west, east, south and south of Balochistan; the Brohis in the center, while the Pashtoons are the majority in the north with Quetta as the main city. Two million Afghan refugees also live in and around Quetta. The proposed APC must discuss Pashtoons and Baluchis as separate entities, their mutual integration and how both can be amicably accommodated within one united Pakistan.

There are anti-Pakistan politicians in both American Senate and House of Representatives that daringly oppose Pakistan. This lobby, on the hand is, pro-India while on the other do not miss any chance to malign and despise Pakistan despite its being a close ally of the United States.

The chairman of the sub-committee on Oversight and Investigations of the U.S. House Foreign Affairs Committee, Dana Rohrabacher, introduced, a resolution last Friday in Congress, in support of the "right of self-determination of the Balochi people, for being victims of human rights violations and oppression despite being the largest province".

Although the ill-timed resolution has been widely condemned in Pakistan by all sections of society, it nevertheless indicates that United States is now contemplating to openly support the insurgency of the dissident Baluchis against both Pakistan and Iran for an independent Balochistan.

“Selig S. Harrison of the George Soros-funded Center for International Policy has called for dividing Pakistan and supporting an independent Baluch province as a means of weakening any alliance between Islamabad and Beijing. Relations between the two countries have warmed, with Pakistan granting China access to a naval base at Gawadar. Similar views have been promoted by Ralph Peters, a strategic affairs analyst, former U.S. Army officer, and an expert on the Middle East and the Islamic world.”

These are extremely ominous indicators and direly forewarn about the coming events and situations that might be difficult for Pakistan to deal with. It should be unmistakably understood that while United States is getting out Afghanistan, she is trying to be relocated in a more vulnerable and safer haven called Balochistan.

Pakistan needs to focus on Baluchistan’s ballooning imbroglio with utmost urgency and in order to find a political solution of this complicated tangle for which the best course is to hold referendum. The Pakistan government should create conducive environment in advance, to pave way for pro Pakistan votes, so that the federation of Pakistan and its geographical cohesiveness can be saved and shored up.

Benazir’s Children should not be inducted into Politics

February 18, 2012

By Saeed Qureshi

Pakistan’s incumbent president Asif Ali Zardari, who is also the acting chairman of the ruling party PPP, has indicated many a time that Asifa Zardari Bhutto would lead the party and carry forward the vision of her deceased mother and that of her grandfather and founder of the PPP; Zulfikar Ali Bhutto.

Earlier, following the assassination of the chairperson of PPP, Mohtrama Benazir Bhutto, her son Bilawal was appointed as the chairman of the party with a new name: Bilawal Bhutto Zardari. It was a shrewd move on the part of Asif Zardari to integrate two clans, namely Bhutto and Zardari into one male successor thus crafting a semblance of unity and togetherness of the two tribes. He wanted Bilawal to represent Bhutto family to obfuscate dissentions within the party.

Bilawal was named chairman of the PPP in December 2007. Zardari planned to serve as a co-chairman of the PPP for at least three years until Bilawal completed his studies overseas. Although Bilawal returned to Pakistan in 2011, and is de-facto chairman of PPP, Mr. Zardari presumably, plans to hold reins of the party till such time as Bilawal is mature enough to take charge of the party as its full-fledged functional head.

Surprisingly, while it was foregone and a settled matter that the next chairman to lead the party is Bilawal, all of a sudden, Mr. Asif Ali Zardari started propping up Asifa as the PPP’s leader and an intelligent successor of late Benazir Bhutto. Asifa who is now 19 years of age is being invited to various state functions held at the president’s house and at the prime minister’s residence.

It should be recollected that when Asif Ali Zardari entered the presidential residence for the first time, he was ensconced on both sides by his two daughters Asifa and Bakhtawar. While initially Bakhtawar (22 years) was being bolstered, later she went into oblivion and was substituted by Asifa for making certain statements about her family, her vision, perceptions and aims with regard to the future of Pakistan and the party.

Recently when president Zardari left for Dubai for his heart surgery, Bilawal Bhutto came to Pakistan. But he remained non vocal and reticent without issuing any substantive statements. He looked subdued and seemed to be in a state of introspection or introversion.

His visibly sluggish posture or quiet demeanor as reflected from his body chemistry could be due to the illness of his father or the lurking feeling that his father was heaped with a plethora of accusations or allegations one of which was that he could be also be instrumental in the assassination of Benazir Bhutto. He could also nurse a kind of forlorn feeling that why all of a sudden his sister was being promoted by his father as the prospective leader of the party and that finally the reins of the party could be handed over to Asifa.

But more potent reason could be his lately nursed disenchantment with politics and like her aunt Sanam Bhutto; he might not like to delve in politics under paranoia of being the target of the elements that killed his mother. Or maybe by virtue of his temperament he is not attuned to getting into the political arena and instead prefers to lead a private life. It could also be possible that father and son might have developed some yet to be revealed differences on matters exclusively privy to them.

Patently, these are all speculations. But notwithstanding the internal feuding within the family for ascendency in the party hierarchy, a keen observer of Pakistan’s murky politics would strongly argue that the leadership of the PPP should not be passed on to a member of the Bhutto family.

Firstly, it would be negation or deviation from the established principle of electing a leader from among the cadres. If the PPP is going to be the family property then its democratic credentials would remain exposed to questioning and its legitimacy as the national party would remain clouded.

Secondly, the progeny of Ms Bhutto might not be as competent as were their mother and grandfather. The Bhutto legacy is certainly a cherished and romantic phenomenon for the steadfast Bhuttoites, so called jialas (die-hard fans) and devotees of Bhutto family. Nevertheless, the ground realties of the political turf in Pakistan are, rough, unpredictable and uncharitable.

The raison d’être for this assertion is that the PPP needs to re-establish its popular image as a party of the masses managed by a brand of leadership that is clean, upright and democratically hoisted in the hierarchy of the party. It would be a tall order for all the three children of Benazir Bhutto to lead PPP at a much younger age when it is faced with monumental challenge of refurbishing its bruised image.

The party needs to motivate and reunite the cadres disillusioned with the corruption of its stalwarts especially Asif Ali Zardari who cannot come clean even if he endeavors to prove himself as an honest person for his whole life.

As for the children of Ms Bhutto, they would always, like their mother, remain vulnerable for their personal safety, and thus restrained from freedom of movement and speech. During the past decade or so, the free movement and open door politicking of the political and religious leaders have come under severe containment and rigorous restrictions.

If Bhutto family is the repository of an unsurpassed fame, immense esteem and eminence, they have foes and adversaries too. It should not be overlooked that four celebrated figures of the Bhutto family were murdered, with the founder of the family hanged through a fake and farcical judicial process.

It would be befitting to allude to the Nehru family that was as much loved and venerated in India as that of Bhutto family in Pakistan. One of the globally known strongest female head of a government, Indira Gandhi was assassinated by two of her Sikh bodyguards in October 1984.

Her assassination was viewed as an act of vengeance against Indira for ordering “operation blue star “in June 1984, entailing massacre of thousands of Sikhs. Her two sons also subsequently perished. Sanjay Gandhi was killed in a flying accident in 1980. The second Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi was assassinated in Tamil Nadu (May 1991) in a suicide bombing carried out by Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam.

It was a sagacious decision on the part of Rajiv’s widow Sonia Gandhi to remain in the background although she could have become the prime minister of India on the drop of the hat. She was well aware that she could be targeted as well. As such she has remained safe, as well as in a dominant position of leading her party and influencing the government with her decisions.

Rahul Gandhi, the son of late Rajiv and Sonia Gandhi has been kicking around in the political arena to begin with, but was perhaps prevailed upon by his well wishers and more by his mother to not challenge the traditional rivals as the scion of Gandhi family. He seems to have understood the message and is now modestly conducting himself that would be tolerable for both friends and foes. His position as the general secretary of the Indian National Congress and member of Lok Sabha is harmless. But the moment he would aspire for a higher status he could encounter threats to his life.

Politics is rather becoming a tough undertaking and a harrowing ordeal for traditional political families particularly in the third world countries. The people are now more politically conscious and want a free run for everyone to aspire and compete for top slots either within the party or in the government. If the families continue to occupy the parties’ pinnacle positions, then it stifles the spirit of free contest that is central to a democratic culture.

Unfortunately in several countries around the world, the politics and parties are known by a few individuals who founded the parties and then assume father figure or iconic status. These leaders maintain their overlord-ship until a stupendous shake-up within the party or in the political waters of the country casts them or their family successors away.
It is quite an objective approach by Sanam Bhutto, the younger sister of Benazir to keep away from the muddy and mucky quagmires of politics in Pakistan. Perhaps she is not as brave or as ambitious as Benazir was. But understandably, what made her averse to politics is the tragic end of her family members that she does not want for herself.

Curiously, the profile or life sketch of Asifa and Bakhtawar can nowhere be found in chronicles or information channels such as face book, you-tube or Wikipedia or other similar blogs. All the information is either blocked or blacked out for fear of slanderous, mischievous and vicious backlash. We have come across comments in face book between the messengers that are dirty and diabolic and are dished out by culturally dwarfed people.

But while this is a prudent way of escaping the malignant and distasteful interactions, it closes the doors and avenues of wider publicity that are absolutely essential for the politicians and those who wish to tread upon the unpredictable and thorny field of politics. Yet it depends as to what course one would like to adopt: stay in politics and face odds or steer clear and enjoy a safe private life.

Sunday, February 12, 2012

Barrister Aitzaz Ahsan has Belittled Himself

February 11, 2012

Saeed Qureshi

By pleading for wrong persons and for wrong causes, the distinguished icon of Pakistan’s bar, barrister Chaudhry Aitzaz Ahsan has belittled himself. By choosing to bail out shady characters, he has eclipsed his fame that he justifiably earned during the movement for reinstatement of the deposed senior judges.

It is difficult to fathom as to what motivated him to defend the incumbent president and prime minister of Pakistan despite a deluge of allegations of Tsunami proportion swelling against them and at a time when the whole country is awash with their stories of flabbergasting corruption.

If it is a question of going by the book of law then any sane person would oppose NRO and its felonious beneficiaries for its being an instrument of exigency and sordid quid pro quo between the parties befittingly to be labeled as the “Pirates of Caribbean”. Till the time the honorable Prime Minister Gilani was not saddled in the prime ministerial chair, he was enjoying a saving grace despite burdened with a heavy backlog of past discrepancies that he committed and for which he was jailed for a few years.

But as the adage goes, the old habits die hard; he went into a replay action with a vengeance. In tandem with his close kith, friends, ministers and cohorts, he misused his authority in such a big way as to pale his past misdoings. His son is implicated in money making scandals of Himalayan scale as well; one of which is the Haj scandal.

Aitzaz Ahsan is decorated with several feathers on his hat of achievements, which can be rated as outstanding. He enjoyed an enviable and most praiseworthy distinction of defending two prime ministers in the court of law: Benazir Bhutto in 2001 and later Nawaz Sharif.

He was the leading member of the panel of lawyers named as the ‘dream team’ that robustly contested before a full court, headed by Justice Khalil-ur-Rehman Ramday, the suspension of chief Justice Iftikhar Chaudhry ordered by the then president Pervez Musharraf. As a result of their valiant defense, the Chief Justice Chaudhry was released by a panel of 13 judges.

Despite announcement by Prime Minister Yousaf Raza Gilani in 2008 to release house-arrested chief justice Iftikhar Chaudhry, the decision was not carried out at the behest of upcoming President Asif Ali Zardari. Zardari feared the chief justice would repeal the amnesty given under the dubious NRO. That led to a massive countrywide protest movement in which Barrister Aitzaz played a prominent role.

That lawyers’ movement was also joined by Former Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif and his party Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N). Nawaz Sharif spearheaded a kind of long march from eastern city of Lahore to Islamabad after defying a detention order issued by the local administration. As a result of the coordinated campaigning by both lawyers and politicians, chief justice Iftikhar Chaudhry, along with several other senior justices and judges, was reinstated on March 22, 2009.

This background glimpse of Aitzaz Ahsan was given to emphasize the vital and indeed the historic role of this distinguished member of bar in fighting for the legitimate and worthy causes. But of late, his decision to stand by the tormentors of judiciary and perpetrators of nauseating scams of corruption and to defend individuals whose past and present is checkered with greed, self indulgence, nepotism; has whipped widespread outrage and disapproval.

The stalwarts of the present government have an unbeaten notoriety for bad and inept governance, and for shameful obsession to enhance their personal and family fortunes while neglecting the pressing and grinding myriad problems of the people of Pakistan.

Out of a litany of corruption scandals, the Hajj Scandal of Abdul Qadir Gilani, Son of Yousaf Raza Gilani is a huge case of corruption that has not only tarred the reputation of prime minister but also of his family. The Khurram Rasool’s mega case of commission and graft, a one time associate and media advisor of prime minister, has also been brought before court for trial.

Every minister of the present government in Pakistan is involved in some case of bribe, grafts, kickbacks and instrumental in debilitating the national institutions such as railways, the steel mills and power generation. There is a long list of sleazy scams that underscore the ruling cabal’s insatiable lust and undying propensity for making their fortunes and enriching themselves by any conceivable mean. These leaders are exposed to a whole minefield of complex moral and legal issues.

The prime minister has dithered on complying with the orders of the Supreme Court to write letter to the Swiss authorities for reopening the money laundering cases against Asif Ali Zardari. They are chips of the same bloc and therefore scratching each other’s back.

The government-judiciary standoff has jammed the whole country and there is not a semblance of any willingness on the part of the government to set the things in order. The soaring poverty, the dysfunctional power sector, the broken law and order and hyping unemployment among other grave problems, are driving the people crazy and they are seized with utter helplessness in the face of an appalling drift and decline.

Was it the lucrative offer to become a senator, or a hefty remuneration for fighting the case or some other irresistible perk that prompted this Goliath of the bar to stand on the side of the felons and crooks? Was it the bait for a ministerial post or offer of governorship that changed the honest mind of this outstanding lawyer with an impeccable reputation?

Otherwise how could this lofty lawyer consent to rescue the besmirched individuals from a predicament that they invited by themselves! Their odorous hands cannot be sweetened even if these are washed and sanctified by all the “perfumes of Arabia?”

Reputation and good name is earned the hard way and over a prolonged period of time. But smear is always lurking and comes readily and that is what barrister Chaudhry Aitzaz Ahsan is faced with presently.

Soofi Ameer Khan’s Miraculous Prayer for Azeem Sultan

February 7, 2012

By Saeed Qureshi

A statement dated October 4, 2007 issued by well known saint Hafiz Sheikh Ameer Khan narrates the following spectacular episode.

“Follow up miracle story of Mr. Azeem khan: 4 years ago he was in a coma for 17 days, suffering from a brain tumour and damaged lung resulting from an overdose of narcotics. He had no pulse and the doctors had removed all equipment from his body. The family had arrived from Pakistan to take his body for burial in Pakistan.”
“When the mosque Imam asked me to pray for this man, as he gave the mosque the largest individual donation, I arrived at the hospital and prayed quietly fro Allah to extend his life span to another 10 years. He was at that time 82 years. Within seconds he opened his eyes and greeted everyone. Two doctors were present in his room when I visited. Five days later he was discharged and his son took him back to Pakistan. One month later both doctors became Muslims.”

“Today I received the enclosure from Azeem Sultan. He is planning to welcome me to Pakistan—I have never visited Pakistan. Also he is sending me a ticket covering my trip to India and Pakistan.”
Cordially yours,
Hafiz Ameer A. Khan, Naqshbandia Soofia

Earlier in a letter dated July 20, 2005, Azeem Sultan sent an email to Soofi Ameer Khan Sahib with this message:
“Indeed it is in acceptance of your very sincere prayers and Dua that Allah (swt) in His infinite Mercy and Divine Blessing has granted me another span of life after such severe illness and hospitalization for sixteen days fighting for life and death at the Medical city Dallas Hospital. I am glad to say that I am almost fully recovered and am enjoying Allah’s gift of life and health, with family and friends.”

These two statements irrefutably corroborate each other. The patient earnestly acknowledges that he got a new lease of life as a result of the prayer of Hafiz Ameer Khan when he was lying in a hospital in a desperate state of “fighting for life.” That state of fighting for life has been very clearly described as in a “state of coma, with no pulse” and when even the life supporting equipment was removed.

That prayer was uttered by Soofi Sahib on January 22, 2002 at midnight aside the bed of Azeem Sultan beseeching the almighty God to extend the patient’s life for another ten years. According to Hafiz Sahib, Azeem Sultan died around midnight on January 22, 2012.Those were exactly ten years that Soofi Sahib had prayed to God to be granted to Azeem Sultan.

Is it not a unique phenomenon that in lucid term can be defined as miracle? The ten years reprieve of life by the supplication of Hafiz Sahib and the deliverance of the patient from a terminable malady offers an eloquent testimony to the effectiveness of the prayer of Hafiz Ameer Khan. God has understandably endowed Hafiz Ameer Khan with special powers to heal the sick and afflicted people and rescue those who get into serious crises.

One can also imagine the utter helplessness of Azeem Sultan being without breathing and his family coming to the hospital to take away his body as he had reached a point of no recovery. All these aspects point towards one inescapable conclusion that it could be only the God almighty who on the prayer of a pious man, could grant a new life to a patient who was almost pronounced dead by his doctors.

The doctors were simply dumbfounded as to how a dying or almost dead person could be revived in matter of minutes. They have since embraced Islam as a result of this inexplicable yet spectacular happening and are now devotees of Sheikh Ameer Khan.
Azeem Sultan used to be a member of the American Muslim Caucus. In Dallas he would be staying for brief periods, whenever he would come from Pakistan. He was one of those philanthropists who would generously respond to the appeals for financial help with fabulous donations for Islamic causes.

Mr. Khaliq Qureshi who is one of the most devoted disciples of Hazrat Ameer Khan Sahib had meet Azeem Sultan in Dallas/Fort Worth, in of the assemblages of the American Muslim Caucus. They became friends.

In his visit to Pakistan in the summer of 2007, Mr. Khaliq Qureshi, as a gesture of courtesy, called upon Azeem Sultan at his Karachi residence. It was during their conversations that Mr. Azeem Sultan told Mr. Khaliq the story of his miraculous and speedy recovery from an irredeemable health situation by the prayer of Soofi Ameer Khan. Sheikh Ameer has a long list of such individuals who benefitted from his prayers and blessings when they were caught in most horrendous situations such as having no issue or afflicted by deadly and fatal ailments.

Soofi Ameer Khan is an embodiment of self-denial, austerity, humility, affection and is away from the mundane allurements. He is a person whose life is rich in unselfish service. He prays for the suffering humanity not for money or a fabulous gift or any costly offer. His prayers are free and readily available for any person who is in distress or is faced with a calamity, adversity or misfortune.

Explaining as to how God the merciful answers the prayers of his chosen human beings and pious people, Hazrat Ameer Khan Sahib wrote the following lines in a note dated January 22, 2004, circulated to his Mureeds (devotees) that amply provide a rational for miracles:

“ Nothing is impossible for Allah and miracles are performed by his servants every single second as the living Allah dictates and orders his servants as the holy Quran says in Sura Rehman, ‘which of the favours of your Lord will you deny’?”

Note: To know about other miracles that Soofi Hafiz Ameer Khan Sahib have performed please read my previous two articles captioned, “ Miracles do Happen” and “Soofi Ameer Khan is Wali (saint) of the Present Times

Traffic Ethics are Vanishing in America

February 6, 2012

By Saeed Qureshi

The United States is one of those countries where the laws are duly respected and followed by the citizens. The law enforcing authorities too seldom show any dereliction or negligence to enforce the laws and establish the writ in letter and spirit.

But road traffic system in America is gradually deteriorating. There are traffic laws to be enforced by the traffic police. There is also an unwritten code of conduct that the commuters and drivers have to observe as a matter of courtesy and part of normal social ethics.

It is a common observation on our roads that generally, the motorists are developing a tendency to not switch on indicators to indicate if they were turning left or right. The one, who is trailing behind or is close on the heels, would be unaware of the front runner’s intention to exit or stay on the lane.

In case the front driver exits without indicating, the one coming after him is usually unprepared, and in order to meet the sudden challenge, he applies the brakes to avoid the possible collusion. We have observed that accidents occur because of the front runner suddenly exiting without lighting the indicators.

It is therefore, imperative that a regulation should be strictly enforced for turning on the indicators whether one wants to go right or left. If such rule is already in the statute books that it should be effectively enforced and the violators fined.

If someone is going parallel with another driver and accelerates a little bit, the other driver would make every attempt to beat the other by raising the speed of his vehicle. And if the first one is also egotistic and adamant, he would also increase the speed of his vehicle and thus a race would start occasionally causing fatal accidents.

The right to give way is seldom observed these days. A driver who is exiting or entering a road or a highway, and is indicating to do so, the one who is driving on the extreme right lane would not slow to enable the exiting driver to move on to the exit ramp. Same is the predicament for those entering a road.

The vehicles coming from the main road would strive hard to not let the entering driver join the main traffic lines. In countless cases every day, serious collusions take place because once the entering driver tries to move to the left lane, the one coming on the main road would neither slow down, nor move to another lane in order to accommodate him or her to change the track.

The heavy vehicles and even medium sized trucks would least care if a driver wants to go to the extreme left tracks. They come dashing and invariably pass by like meteorite to block the driver from changing the lane. One has to be very cautious while changing the lanes as those coming from behind would not mind even banging their vehicles with the one ahead of them if it comes in their lane somehow.

It seems that most of the drivers are seized with a pervading stress or pent up tension or even a ting of arrogance or superfluous zeal to remain ahead and adamant while driving on the roads. Or else they would be drunk and in that irrational or unguarded mood they commit traffic violations some times of a very grave nature. A semblance of caution or stable behavior to be observed while driving fast on city roads is generally missing among the commuters.

Everyone appears to be in haste and browbeat the others as if he has to meet a deadline in court or was being chased or seized by some demon or spirit. Such a mindset is certainly perilous for the new drivers who are paranoid while driving for the first time in a maze of fast moving vehicles without letting the other either to turn left or right.

The tailing of the front vehicle that might be going slow for some reason is also an irritating pastime or distasteful behavior of many drivers. Without realizing if the driver ahead is not an expert, could be a fresh license holder, or trying to negotiate an exit or is cautious by habit, they would bring their fast moving vehicle within one or two feet of the front car and would pressurize him or her to clear than lane.

If the front runner is unable to do so and the one coming behind manages to move to the second lane, he would accelerate the engine to an alarming rate and would overtake the slow moving car as a gesture of disgrace and vendetta.

Those drivers that hit someone and are indisputable violators, would stubbornly argue as if they were right and the other who was hit from behind was wrong. Even if finally the violators has to surrender his insurance documents, in most cases it would turn out to be fake or expired or would never be traced despite the address given on the insurance document.

Some rough and uncultured drivers have adopted another demeaning demeanour to force the front slow going driver to clear the lane. They would come very close and turn on and off the headlight lights frequently. That vulgar gesture is otherwise an offence and affront but unmindful of the ethics or good mannerism they would keep doing it.

When they pass by they would give a dirty and scornful gaze as if hell had let loose and they have suffered an irreparable loss or irredeemable disgrace by remaining behind for a few minutes.

Many oncoming drivers turn on their high beam lights causing visibility obstruction to the drivers coming from the opposite side. This practice with such category of drivers is either due to the ignorance of the traffic rulers or because of weak eyesight or deliberate attempt to cause inconvenience to other drivers on the other side of the median. Keeping full lights on for a longer period of time should be checked by the police and the perpetrators fined.

We have heard about the road rage that takes a toll of quite a few precious lives every year in America. The road rage is caused from the syndrome of suffering from a false sense of superiority and hurt ego. The fastidious or extremely self-centered drivers take it as a humiliation if someone else overtakes them or enters into a race or honks for clearance of road to let them move fast.

There is always a situation of mayhem on the roads of large cities like New York and Chicago. Wrong overtaking, finding ways through the jammed traffic and browbeating other drivers are common practices in these cities. In down town sections, the population remains stuck up for hours either waiting for a public transport or private cabs that usually fleece the passengers.

The roads in down town New York cannot be widened because of the sky-scrapers and high rise buildings on both sides. So the traffic mess and road bottlenecks would remain a daily traumatic feature of these big metropolises for a long time to come.

It would certainly be desirable if the applicants for driving license are given orientation lessons before issuing them the license which can also be used as an identity document. The basic lesson of such orientation sessions should be to inculcate forbearance, patience, tolerance, and a willingness to give the right of way to others.

The traffic sergeants apprehend the traffic violators which is good and is helpful in ensuring smooth and hazard-free traffic. But occasionally in their zeal to catch violators and to issue a ticket they themselves overstep their own regulations. In some cases when some driver was charged for over-speeding and the police officers were asked to give a radar proof, the latter did not do so.

Those drivers who travel long distances and are stopped in counties which fall on the main motorways, cannot contest the tickets even if it was wrongly given. The reason is that one has to challenge the decision of the traffic police officer in the same county where he was booked. Now to come there from his own far away city would be a tall order costing money and time. Such a victim prefers to pay the fine and get rid of the headache.

The speed on interstate highways is 60 to 70 miles in United States. This is ridiculously low than what is actually desirable and needed. But what irks one is that while he was driving on the permissible speed, all of sudden the speed would be reduced to 50 miles in the precincts of a certain county that falls on the highway.

That certainly defies the logic as highways should have a uniform speed limit and it would be naturally difficult to discern for a newcomer about the reduced speed especially at night.

The police officers mostly prey upon the speed violators on such sections for raising the revenue of that particular country. This blatant anamoly should be done away with as to drive at 50 miles per hours in a particular section of the highway is not only funny but slows down fast moving vehicles and take more time to reach the destinations.

Mount Vernon: a Unique City for Tourists

February 1, 2012

By Saeed Qureshi

While surfing through Texas Tourism Department’s website to find out the site-seeing places around Dallas/ Fort Worth, we came across a curious name, “Mount Vernon”. Although there were quite a few other locations, yet we decided to visit this place as it is one of those cities that go back in the formative stages of the United States. The visit was extremely rewarding as can be fancied from the following narration.

This town situated along Highway I-30 East is about two hours drive from DFW. Perhaps most of the nature lovers are unaware of the picturesque surroundings and serene natural beauty of this historical city that preserves an invaluable natural and cultural heritage. At one glance it gives a look of the past transforming into the present that is inherent and integral to the changing times and societies.

Mount Vernon sparkles like a jewel with an array of the old buildings nicely preserved as the awesome architectural symbols of a tumultuous yet changing past. This city is also an amalgam of the modern roads and the dirt lanes within the city precincts.

The town of Mount Vernon is a treasure trough of the past relics, old private buildings, city hall, court house, Indian heritage trail, parks, churches, historical highways, lakes and virgin countryside aura. The city mirrors a magnificent history of this unique and captivating tourist resort. This town is studded with the most alluring lakes, one of which the “Lake Cypress Springs”, is designated as the most beautiful lake in the state of Texas.

There is an amazing diversity of flora and fauna found in this land. The birds and the flowers that are found in this aromatic region have been largely preserved in the “Fire Station Museum” well-maintained by the Franklin County Historical Association.
There are several sites that are the legacy of a progressing past and are incredibly interesting for tourists.

The Fire Station Museum is a spectacular place to see with utter amazement, some of the rare artifacts and huge collections of the butterflies, bird eggs, Indian primitive weapons crafted from stone and iron and the Don Meredith Sports Memobrillia. Don Meredith was legendary football player from Mount Vernon.

This museum has the unique distinction among a total of 13 museums to exhibit 222 remarkably preserved bird eggs, three of which from Parakeet, heath hen and passenger pigeon are now extinct. Most of these precious things have been donated by the people who collected these rarities in albums in their life time.

The vice president of the Franklin County's Historical Association, Jean Ann Marshall was very gracious to spare time despite weekend holiday, to take us around the city. She showed us various old buildings in the city. Over 60 homes built before World War I are marked here with attractive signs, designating the original owners and the years of construction.

One such house is the “Thruston House”. She explained the historical background of this most wondrous building. She told us that the Thruston House was named after the tallest soldier in the confederate army, Col. Henry Clay Thruston who lived here until his death in 1911. He was 7 feet, 7 and ½ inches tall and used to lead the army with a banner in his hand.

The house was built in 1868 and has been renovated, although most part is still in the original form. The artifacts, the quilts, the beds, the money safe, the kitchen utensils, the shaving kits, the dresses, the weapons used during those times have been meticulously preserved in the house situated in the midst of a spacious park.

Ms. Marshall also informed us as to how the Fire Station Museum was established and how it gradually developed through various stages and was brought to its present shape. She told us that most of the artifacts, and the rare things kept in the museum were donated by the donors of this area.

The land around has remained famous and has been enriching the economy with countless cotton farms, planting of half of a million peach trees, water-melons and cane syrup starting from 1920 to 1940. The oil was discovered here in 1936 that led to a diversified and robust economy in the region.

The mesmerizing “Lake Cypress Springs” impounded in 1970 on 3400 acres, is a marvel in its own right for its spellbinding beauty and compelling charm with which it thrills the visitors. The Lake’s coast is dotted by fancy huts where the tourists can stay for longer periods.

The beach that zigzags around the lake is furnished with benches and fireplaces for the tourists to come for BBQ picnics enjoy the panoramic view while fishing at the same time. Another vast lake Bob Sandlin built in 1977 covers an astounding area of 9460 acres and backs up to the dams of Lake Cypress Springs and Lake Monticello.

Although one can see the entire city within an hour or so but at the end one feels as if he has gone through a rejuvenating and novel experience of life-time remembrance.

It is a quiet, slumbering town with few residents seen on the roads. But there is a permeating blissful spirit running through the air that impels the visitors to come again to this dream town.