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Is Musharraf a legitimate president ?

20 February 2008 240 views 10 Comments


Students Action Committee (SAC), Lahore organized a mock poll on Mall Road Lahore on February, 18th 2008, the very day elections were being conducted in the country. Keeping in view the security concerns and the sensitivity of the day, the organizers were not expecting a good response. However, they were determined at executing the idea on this day for its symbolic importance. The idea was to have a referendum on the legitimacy of Musharraf as the President of Pakistan where the voters had to be general public.

The organizers setup the polling booth near Lahore High Court (opposite GPO Lahore) by early morning. The booth was not yet setup completely that a guy in twenties who was passing by on his bike stopped and asked ‘Have you started?’. This definitely came as a surprise to the organizers. He was the first voter and soon in a matter of an hour or so around a 100 votes had been caste. Those passing by stopped and voted to show their concern.

Many of the rickshaw drivers, motor-bikers, young boys, supporters of political parties going back home

on motor cycle rickshaws after voting in general elections stopped and voted. The voters discussed their concerns with each other and with the organizers and appreciated them for this effort. A man who was driving the way to the polling booth for general elections with his family, stopped and asked the organizers ‘ Do you really need to have this referendum? It is an obvious fact, none can deny this?‘ He then voted himself and asked her wife and young kids to vote as well.

Not more than two hours had passed that police interfered as expected. ‘ Stop this ! You have five minutes and your time starts now!‘ , shouted the SHO as he came out of the police van. The organizers tried to talk to him to negotiate things but he did not allow them to stay even for 5 minutes. The booth was wrapped up as ordered and the organizers decided to move to the Lahore Press Club and setup the camp there. Later, with the support of the lawyers the negotiations were started again with the cops. The lawyers managed to get us the permission to setup our camp at the Mall road at gate of Cathedral Church (near Shell Petrol Pump opposite Salt n Pepper). The booth was thus moved to the said place soon. This venue proved to be even more prominent and the vote count increased incredibly.

It was very encouraging to note that people not just voted themselves but called up their friends and family members to reach up the place and caste their vote. It was good to see people are concerned and are ready to come out on such a sensitive day for such an activity. Lawyers and members of civil society also joined and lend their support to make the event a success. It was by 3 PM that the polling was closed. Throughout the polling none was allowed to vote more than once and no sort of rigging was tolerated to ensure fair voting.

After the polling had been closed, vote counting started. The general public gathered at the booth to witness the counting in progress. Local and International Media was also present to cover the event. Public was waiting to know the results of the referendum though it was quite obvious from the ballot boxes.

The results of the referendum were then displayed to the public.

The public announced their decision !
So, Mr. Musharraf, aap kya kehtay hain ?

It was rigged, right ?




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10 Comments »

  • Umayr said:

    Great coverage, Ale. And the flex were awesome. Keep it up.

  • Arslan said:

    Thanks for doing this, keep it up!

  • Anonymous said:

    Good coverage indeed :)
    Activism zindabad.

  • Anonymous said:

    well done!

  • Anonymous said:

    That’s a good step but may i ask who to replace with Musharaf? Do u have any alternative president without any prior crime record? Don’t say that u have Dr. Qadir to replace him as then u’ll have unbearable international pressure. I m not supporting Musharaf but temporarily…till we have stable conditions in our country…plz post ur replies here.

  • Syed ALE Natiq said:

    Well, Pakistan has a parliamentarian form of government. The president is simply a ceremonial head of the state .Anyone legally selected by the assembly with required majority should replace him. Why do we really need Musharraf – can you discuss that ?

  • Anonymous said:

    all the people who support musharraf just give this argument that we dont have someone else to replace.
    actually you people are just hypnotized.
    you will learn your lesson when some one from your relatives will be one of the missings.
    musharraf is not more than another army general who is wicked and sick.

  • Hasan said:

    @above comment

    So this means you are afraid of losing some one in a fight for islam.If thats the case then there shouldn’t have been wars for islam, land, power etc.Every one afraid of losing life. You are afraid that if musharraf goes, america attacks or america supports india in attacking Pakistan. Dont you think these blasts are due to musharaf’s loose hand on allowing cia into Pakistan. Our minister announced on geo that america is behind these blasts. so you want to be a coward and be safe inside your house and speak only when you are hurt. there is a hadth that i dont know the exact wordings of. It says something like zulm k aagay awaaz uthaana bhi ek jihaad hai. I hope musharraf goes and any one who brings a proper islamic rule comes where the original islam is applied(not extremisim or these blasts etc etc). Allah will help if we have proper faith in Him. A verse of Quran says somethinmg like, if you are a momin then fight for islam and I will help and one momin can handle 1000 kafir(exact figure may be mistaken) ….
    Iran has opposed USA. Iran is acheiving success in it, why cant we. Here i am not arguing on whether Iran was right in what its doing, it is just an example.

  • Syed ALE Natiq said:

    Iran has definitely set an example for all the nations to follow. Its not about USA, its about other’s involvement in our national issues. Who is US to decide the fate of Pakistan or any other nation ? Whether it be US or any other state, none has the authority to play with national affairs of other states. Iran is opposing that and their success is quite obvious.

    Our national interest lies in the interest of our own people, not in that of US or any other powers.

    Is Pakistan a sovereign state ?
    Are we independent citizens ?

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