Thursday, November 20, 2008

Normal Politics

Amidst suicide bombings and an economic meltdown, it is almost reassuring - and I really mean that - to read about what I call normal politics. Normal politics is the stuff that makes the front page in countries where there is no war, and where most people can eat 2, if not 3, square meals a day. For instance, the other day, the National Assembly passed a bill on labor relations with most parties - led by the center-left PPP - supporting it (and with the obligatory PML-N hissy fit). Check out this report from The News:
The National Assembly on Wednesday approved the Industrial Relations Bill with majority voice vote despite strong opposition from the PML-N and a walkout. The bill aims to consolidate and rationalise the law relating to the formation of trade unions and improvement of relations between employers and workers.

The Senate had already passed the bill unanimously while in the National Assembly too all parties, including the PML-Q and the MQM, supported it except for the PML-N. Interestingly, the PML-N, which had supported the bill in the upper house, took a U-turn in the National Assembly, saying the bill should not be passed in haste.

Isn't that nice to see? Isn't legislative jostling over labor laws refreshing in this day and age? It's kind of quaint, isn't it? I don't know, maybe I'm crazy. But I was somewhat-irrationally happy over reading this report.

Another example of normal politics is the Jamaat-e-Islami railing against the imposition of a Western agenda on the women of Pakistan. You will note, I am sure, that the object of their ire is not a law resembling the French one that bans headscarves or decreeing alcohol legal. No, no. They're angry at...well, I'll let The News tell it:
According to a resolution passed by a meeting of Jamaat-e-Islami leaders, JI women’s wing, Jamiat Ittehadul Ulema, and Women and Family Commission said that the recommendation of the CII making it mandatory on men to divorce their wives within 90 days on their demand was absolutely un-Islamic and an attempt to impose western culture on the country.

Imagine that! The nerve! What will the denizen of Western secularism and immorality that is the Council of Islamic Ideology think of next?

1 comment:

Tazeen said...

Thank heavens someone else noticed it. That jack ass Aamir Liaquat hosted an hour long show on Thursday and almost declared the fatwa that this would be against shariat (i refuse to use the more Arabised Shahriah). He even made mufti muneeb (the clown who heads Ruet-e-hilal committee) say that Ulema will wage a nation wide protest if the bill is presented in the assembly. According to Dr Farooq Khan (Manshera based religious scholar), less than one per cent Pakhtoon women get their share in inheritance but no one has ever waged a protest against it, after all that too is an UNISLAMIC practice.