Politics of Persuasion and Power in the Political and Apolitical Institutions of Pakistan (2008-18)

By Ahmad, Rana Eijaz | South Asian Studies, July-December 2018 | Go to article overview

Politics of Persuasion and Power in the Political and Apolitical Institutions of Pakistan (2008-18)


Ahmad, Rana Eijaz, South Asian Studies


Theoretical Perspective

Political institutions are the institutions which supposed to make government, legislate, and enforce the laws. Besides that such institutions punish the transgressor of laws and known as judiciary. Thus, Legislature, Executive and Judiciary are the political institutions at the macro level in the country. Trade unions and political parties are micro level of political institutions. Different countries have different types of political institutions. Not only this, these institutions have different behaviours according to the idiosyncrasy of the political elite. The leadership plays an important role in the authority and legitimacy of the political institutions. Authority as a might usually carry legitimate actions while authority as a power is usually abused.

Thus, political institutions that carry authority as a might, they protect others and give rights through performing their duties. Such institutions are usually run by political elite who try to seek power through legitimate means. The groups who try to achieve power through strikes, demonstrations and protests are just interest groups. Not only this the groups who protect the specific group, family and party interests instead of national interests such groups are also come under the banner of interest groups. They do have their leaders but such leaders are mere group leaders.

Before going in to more details we should understand here who is the leader? Leader is a person who commands respect, legitimacy, and authority among his people. Such a person is always honest, sincere, disciplined, punctual, dedicated and committed for serving others. He considers the welfare of the whole not of a specific group, family, party or any region.

In the ancient times, more than twenty five hundred years ago, Plato, gave his theory of the philosopher king and education. It based on idealism and considered as impractical. His own student Aristotle negated his theory of leadership and learning. Almost two thousand years later Machiavelli presented his theory of the Prince that was also too authoritative and did not serve the purpose of the people. In the modern world, although Machiavelli is considered hero under the guise of villain yet it not welcomed anywhere in the world. Unfortunately, Machiavellian approach has usually been pivotal in the policy making of every ruler in the world. After understanding the meaning of the word 'leader' we may call leadership as a phenomenon that believes in guiding and governing people rather protecting and ruling over the peoples of the world. The protection of the people from external dangers is the duty of the institutions that a leader devised during guidance. In the twenty first century, it can be considered that the western style of leadership is no more valid for the world leadership. The collapse of communism in 1991 and failure of capitalism after the so-called on terrorism exposed the reality of democracy as a mean to an end not as an end to mean. It is the high time to consider any Asian model of leadership and learning. Realistically speaking the model, the west has been employing for leading the world was semi Islamic as it was void of faith. Therefore could not be implemented in its true spirit. The absence of spirit makes the body fragile and empty of action. All other models of government are also based on Islam or we can say that have been a charade of Islam. Simulation remains temporarily and makes an impression for a while and vanishes at last leaving a vacuum behind. This is what world feeling today, a vacuum of leadership that could harmonize the relationship of humanity.

Historically, Asia has been intellectually dependent upon the west. What is good for the west is considered good for the rest. Plato, Aristotle, Machiavelli, Hobbes, Rousseau, Marx and Lenin could never create a workable leadership who could lead the world peacefully and objectively. Their theories of Ideal State, education, justice, prince, sovereignty, general will, socialism, and communism had never been practicable in any society of the world. …

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