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November 13, 2017

Higher echelons initiate CBMs


November 13, 2017

In an atmosphere that is replete with debates and controversies revolving around the roles played by the establishment, political parties and civilian governments, Prime Minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi’s recent visit to the Line of Control (LoC) along with Chief of Army Staff (COAS) General Qamar  Javed Bajwa is being taken by all and sundry as an effective confidence-building-measure(CBM) initiated by the top echelons with a good sense of timing.

In addition to showing that these CBMs have been launched with a good sense of timing, it is also proven from this goodwill move that the leaders of the nation, whether in the higher echelons of the elected government or within the top military brass, are cognizant of the conspiracies hatched and pursued, vigorously and consistently by the anti-Pakistan elements within the country and abroad, aiming at damaging Pakistan’s solidarity and unity.

Whether it is a mutually goodwill gesture in reality, it can be easily understood from similar CBMs taken recently by Abbasi government that always keeps the security establishment on board in important deliberations and policy-making discussions of national and international scale.

Even otherwise, it is the need of the hour. How can a government take important decisions regarding the security of the country as well as in the inter-state relations without consulting the key stakeholders? Even in the matters of inter-state relations that focus on defence and strategic issues, the top governmental executives from the political cadre always carry out massive consultations with the national institutions entrusted the task of country’s defence.

As a matter of fact, the trumpeted inter-institutional friction does not exist in the country at present , at least at a permanent level. The institutions do not behave like fiery individuals having strong likes, dislikes, leanings and tilts. Difference of opinion, if any, is just but natural and that difference of opinion among the leaders of institutions is witnessed even in the maturest democracies. It does not mean confrontation as is normally understood in some of our circles which jump over the conclusions in drawing inferences especially in the area of difference of opinion.

These circles have also been trying for quite some time to draw a picture of confrontation between former Prime Minister Muhammad Nawaz Sharif and his brother Muhammad Shehbaz Sharif. The factual position on the ground is not at all that of serious rift between the two brothers, what to talk of one playing against the other for perpetuation of power in the hands of one at the cost of the other. No such indications have ever come to the fore at any point of time except in the ‘unverified talk’ let loose by some people with certain motives before them.

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