Rawalpindi: The Pakistan Ex-servicemen Association (PESA) on Wednesday expressed grave concern over deteriorating economic situation for which it held the incumbent government responsible which is too much focused on winning elections at any cost.
These observations were made in a meeting of the Executive Council of PESA with its SVP, Vice Admiral Ahmad Tasnim, SJ & Bar, in chair. The meeting was attended by Lt Gen Naeem Akbar (Retd), Air Marshal Masood Akhtar (Retd), Justice (Retd) Jawaid Nawaz Gandapur, former Ambassador Salim Nawaz Gandapur, Brig Mian Mahmud (Retd), Brig Masud ul Hassan (Retd), Brig Riaz Ahmad (Retd), and Niak Raja Muhammad Fazil.
PESA members expressed great concern over the deteriorating economic situation. The latest evaluation report released by IMF paints a highly gloomy picture of our economy. According to this report, deep seated structural problems and weak macroeconomic policies are responsible for the present bleak situation.
Government’s economic policies are directed to ensure victory in the next elections, they said.All available funds, obtained through loans are being spent on programmes to achieve the short-term objective that has nothing to do with boosting the economy, they added.
The former military leaders observed that major projects like Riko Diq mines, Thar coal and water reservoirs have been put on back burner due to various controversies created by the government itself.
Government must tighten up its belt, cut down non-productive expenses and utilize each rupee towards economic recovery. They asked all patriotic Pakistanis to bring back their funds from abroad and reinvest in Pakistan.
Surprise and dismay were expressed at the unwarranted controversy and misgivings created by some commentators about the COAS address delivered to GHQ officers. In fact what he had said was only about general principles that guide democratic societies around the world.
The other point of COAS talk regarding general consensus on what constitutes national interests and national objectives needed comprehensive discussion but that was twisted out of shape and given different meanings. It must be noted that we have failed to evolve and think as a nation just because we have not been able to agree upon national objectives and national values. These values have to be decided through consensus after a national debate and are not changed with the change of a government.
We are lucky that the basic requirements of a Muslim state have already been spelled out in Meesaq-e-Madina, Holy Prophet’s last Sermon and Quaid-e-Azam’s address of 11 August 1947. PESA has already carried out a basic study on this subject and would be ready to join in any effort to finalize nationally accepted basic values.
His reference to media trial of some retired generals was only to emphasize the universal dictum that everyone is innocent till proved otherwise, it was noted.
PESA officials said that the former Railways minister connected with the Golf Course affair was a full-fledged politician, being Senator of a major political party which is presently partner in the ruling coalition. The other officers were part the civilian bureaucracy. Their actions in that capacity had no connection with the Army. This Golf Course case has put aside a major corruption scandal of Pakistan Railways.
Members of the ex-servicemen body expressed concern at the ways superior judiciary was being maligned and insulted by various personalities including some connected with the ruling coalition. Tall claims are being made about respect for the judiciary but there is need to give same respect to its orders also.