I am almost nearing my third year of undergraduate studies from one of the top business institutes of South Asia, and recently I’ve been forced to ask myself this question: Do I understand Pakistan’s economy, not on paper, but what it is for real? Do we, as educated university graduates, understand the motives behind the economic policies pursued by our governments? Would we able to question our authorities, intelligently so, on behalf of the 180 million population of Pakistan? Would we be able to defend and ‘protect’ that laborer’s tax money, which he had earned so hard, slaving day and night?
Our government has borrowed so much that an average head of the family in Pakistan, with four dependents, has a national debt of 0.5 million rupees to pay off. And he hasn’t borrowed a single rupee from that. Can you imagine that? And more ironic is the fact that this man is actually paying off this debt, rupee by rupee, in form of the indirect taxes that the government blesses him with. Is this a new form of slavery?
Every 5-year tenure will leave the ruling class better off and the ruled ones worse.
Until we get a hang of policies and politics, we would continue to remain ‘ignorant’ business graduates. Every 5-year tenure will leave the ruling class better off and the ruled ones worse. We need to question whose economic wealth is being maximized, when every time the Prime Minister comes on national television to boast about the pretty work that his government is doing for the common man in this country.
This is why I have immense respect for teachers who make us think, who force us to step out of the bubbles we live in, where we have categorized acts neatly as ‘ethical’ and ‘unethical’, as black and white. But things are not so black and white; they’re grey.
Will we make an effort to understand things for what they are, or will we choose to ignore them, like always, because they might not impact us or our ‘bright’, future plans? I pray we don’t turn into individuals who are comfortable with the current government policies, with the status quo, so much so that changing it would mean threatening our personal interests. I pray that some amongst us have the courage to out rightly question those with power and to not rest, unless there’s more accountability and transparency. Now those are some pretty words.