Historical speech of Shaykh ul Islam Dr Muhammad Tahir ul Qadri on 23 dec

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23 December2012 live televised Address of Dr Tahil Ul Qadri

Gathering of over 2 million at Menare Pakistan Lahore. English transcript


The brave people of Pakistan; all scholars, traders, landlords, farmers, laborer’s, teachers, students, doctors, engineers, professionals, intellectuals, political and social leader and workers, journalists, Muslims and members of other religions, all segments of society; the armed forces who are protecting our country from the mountains of Siachen to the depths of the skies; mothers, brothers, sisters, those who love this country. Today, by rejecting this exploitative, feudal, capitalist, oppressive, deceptive politics, and to save the country, all of you who are here today at Minar-e-Pakistan…

Those soldiers who are protecting the borders of this country; judges who provide justice to the country, lawyers, politicians, and members of political parties, and without any differentiation, Today the millions of Pakistanis who have accepted the agenda of saving the country, and have accepted my call and invitation and have come here, I greet all of you with Assalamu Alaikum.

72 years before, the declaration for the creation of Pakistan was passed at Minar-e-Pakistan, today the declaration for the completion of Pakistan will be passed.

Today, as all segments of life, their leaders, representatives, political and social leaders and workers, religious leaders, men and women have accepted my call; by making this a unique gathering in the history of Pakistan, have also proved that this is a representative gathering of the 180 million people of Pakistan. In front of me is a mini Pakistan; from Chaman to Kashmir, and Karachi to the borders of Afghanistan. People from every corner of the country, numbering in millions. A greater gathering than this has never been seen in the history of Pakistan and never will be seen.

Words of appreciation

I thank all of you, the members of Minhaj-ul-Quran (MQI) and Pakistan Awami Tehreek, the people of Pakistan and the leaders and members of political, social and religious parties who have considered this event as their own, I thank and congratulate them all. Especially the leader of MQM Altaf Hussain who has sent a 50 strong delegation of his leaders, MPs, MPAs and members of their executive, I thank them and welcome them. They are all here; Dr Farooq Sattar is on the stage representing all of them. I thank them for also raising their voice with us in this movement to uproot the feudal, capitalist, corrupt and exploitative system.

The hero of this nation,The great Dr Abdul Qadeer Khan has spoken to me on the phone and has sent a delegation of his party to this event; he himself had a prior commitment in Karachi in a national engineering conference, I thank him. He will come to meet me in Lahore in the next few days. I welcome all leaders and members of other religions, social and political parties. This is their event, this is not just Minhaj Ul Quran’s event but it is the event for all Pakistani people. It is the event of the 180 million people of Pakistan, every religion and sect, men and women; and not least the law enforcement agencies, intelligence agencies, all police departments and their commandos, elite forces and heads. I thank them that they did their duty in this event, my prayers are with them. Also all political parties whether they are part of the federal government or in the provinces, I congratulate and thanks them that they have not created any obstacles in arranging this event to save Pakistan.

Fateha for Bashir Bliour

On this occasion, our country’s esteemed leader and our brother Mr Bashir Bilour Shaheed who was martyred yesterday and his funeral was held today, I would like to offer my condolences to his family, Aswanyar Wali, ANP and all the people of Khayber Pakhtun Khawa. I will pray for him and all those who have fallen victim to terrorism in this country.

The Speech

3 ouths of Dr. Tahir ul Qadri

Ladies and gentleman, my speech includes 3 oaths. This is not a lecture but a declaration. We are about to take Pakistan into a new era. I have seen that lots of people have written and said many negative things about this, and it is a weakness in our society that when we think about something we welcome it by being negative. If only our culture was on positives foundations. If this was so I would not have to make these three oaths.

It is a principal that when a statement is made in court it is done so by taking an oath on the Quran. I am giving a national statement; to the court of the 180 million people of Pakistan, this is the parliament of the 180 million citizens before us in which big decisions will be made to stabilize the country to change its course, to bring back happiness on the faces of the poor and to give the country a bright future. That is why before this statement, misconceptions are removed. So that people listen to my agenda, and agree or disagree on merit and resoning and take a principled approach.

I swear by God and the Quran, and on the intercession of Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) that no country or organisation or national or international agency was behind this event, this was not the wish or order of anyone nor did anyone know about it, and I make God my witness and I address this nation and take this oath as though I am in front of the Gumbad-e-khadhrah (green dome of Madinah); and today’s gathering is not the agenda of any country or any agency.

Second oath is that for this whole gathering on which you spent millions of Rupees, all arrangements of this have not been provided by any country or national or international organisation, not even one penny. All of this has been paid for by the sacrifices made by the members of Minhaj-ul-Quran and the people of Pakistan, who want to see the changes in this country and have supported us, apart from this no other money from any other source has been used. As God is my witness.

Third oath in front of this gathering with God as my witness is the aim of this event is not anti constitutional nor is it to put an end to democracy. Remove these misconceived notions, As a Muslim brother accept and reject what I say based on merit and evidence in a principled approach.

The aim is not to pave the way for a military takeover, Allah is my witness and if any military does try and take over, Allah is my witness I will do anything and everything to stop a military takeover, before the political leaders do.

And the purpose of this is not to put an end to politics and democracy in fact the reason for this gathering is to clean politics of evil, and give 18 million their rights, to stabilize politics, to correct the electoral system and save the state of Pakistan which is in danger, to remove threats and save it.


Outh of the participants

Come, among the millions among you brothers and daughters, let us all take the oath with our right hand that we all take the oath for the welfare of this state, we take an oath regardless of colour or creed, we take an oath upon this that Pakistan is for everyone and belongs to everyone, this Pakistan is as much for the poor as it is for the rich, this is for the labourer and the hard worker just as much as it is for the landlords. We take an oath that peace rules Pakistan, and we leave extremism. We take an oath that Pakistan will have equality. We take oath that Pakistani politics has fairness, that one country and one nation will make Pakistan sufficient. And make such a nation a proud nation able to lift its head.

Today all these people did not come here by the resources of MNAs or MPAs, LDAs, or the resources of the state, or by closing schools, colleges, universities and bringing the children. Today people have gathered here having sold their jewellery, motorcycles and possessions and land. I have come to know of this. These poor people who had nothing to eat they have tolerated hunger to save this hungry country, they have sacrificed a lot. I give my salaam to 180 million people of Pakistan and the millions that have gathered here in response to my call to save the STATE not POLITICS, today’s gathering has made it clear that the 180 million people of Pakistan want to save the state not the politics of thieves and cheats.

Now on this occasion I would like to ask you two things. Have you have come just to welcome and listen to me or to change Pakistan. Raise your hands and reply. Have you come for change?

[The crowd Chant: “We want Change. We want Change.”]

If you want change I am also here to bring change. Listen, to change the future of this state, it will not be a bed of roses, for this we need to sacrifice. If you want Change, then I am also here for change. My struggle starting today will be peaceful from start to end. Raise your hands and say we reject violence, I cannot tolerate any violence. There will be no violence, suicide bombings, firing and stones will not be thrown, and we will change with peace. This will be a peaceful struggle from the beginning to the end.

If you would like change, answer 2 questions, if you would like to change the system, will you accept any decision that I make?

Listen, think and then answer, if I say to you that until the system is changed, this 2 million ocean like gathering spread over 25 miles radius, If I ask you, to stay here at Minar-e-Pakistan until the system is changed, will you stay here at Minar-e-Pakistan until we have changed? Will you stay here? [Crowds shout “Yes”] You will be hungry, thirsty, it will be bitterly cold, and will you remain steadfast and remain here?

I like to thank the print media of Pakistan and electronic media for broadcasting this event live to the whole country and world.

Now answer the second question, there is another option. If I say to you at the end of the lecture, if I say we are not going home tonight but we will march towards Islamabad and I will be in the front row, will you come with me? [Crowd shouts “yes”]. It will be a peaceful march.

Those who want to go back home due to family and work commitments, you are permitted to go back, put your hands up if you want to go home put your hands up. Imam Hussain asked his followers to leave if they wanted to before the night of the battle. [No one raises their hands] If anyone wants to leave due to any commitment, they are free to do so. I will not hold a grudge against you.

Now I will present my case and wait for my announcement at the end.

I have given a hint and advance notice so that the police and law enforcement agencies can make their arrangement up to Islamabad. I want to free the police from the grip of oppressive politicians.

I want every Pakistani to be free of poverty. This Pakistan was not made for a few hundred families but for 180 million people, we will snatch it from them and hand it over to the people.

We have to change this society where people ‘eat people’. (reference to some Urdu Poetry).

We support constitutionality and a clean and pure democratic process in this country; we support the independence of the judiciary. A state cannot survive peacefully without a strong judicial system; the people cannot advance without a strong judicial system. The 180 Million people of Pakistan support an independent judicial system of law.

In the same way, we will make any sacrifice to save and defend the independence and sovereignty of this country. Nothing is more important than Pakistan in this nation. For the sake of this Nation, every soul is prepared to lay down their lives. Pakistan is the most important country in this region. We must correct our system and improve our national image in order to fulfill our duties abroad. We must purify society of violence, extremism and terrorism.

Those who have adopted terrorism and taken up arms, due to their deviant beliefs, are the children of this nation; are our brothers. I will address them by saying: if you talk about injustice to this country then I am with you, if you talk about justice I am with you, if you talk about ending foreign drone attacks I am with you, if you talk about ending the reliance on foreign powers then I am with you, but when it comes to ending terrorism and stopping the killing of the innocent then you support me, when it comes to protecting mosques and places of then you support me, when it comes to turning this country into a peaceful society then you support me, when we talk about returning returning the rights of the poor then you support me, when it comes to freeing this country from slavery and foreign threat then you support me. I will support you. Together we can rid this country from killings, terrorism, extremism, lootings etc.. lets free this country from drone attacks. So no world power can violate our borders or think of interfering in our country.

This country has unlimited resources but it is economically weak because of corruption, incompetent leadership and the exploitative and corrupt electoral system. Which we will change and save the country from collapse and give true independence to the country.

The slogan Save Country Not Politics; does not mean that I am against politics. The state of Madinah was a political state, started by Holy Prophet Muhammad (SAW) it was Islamic politics. I believe in politics. I am against all kinds of dictatorship and authoritarianism. I am a believer in democracy from start to end. The politics that I believe in is that of the principles based upon equality and fairness. An example is when the allotment of land by the Caliph Abubaker was over ruled by the chief justice Umar bin Khattab. Caliph accepted the ruling. When Umar Khatab was the Caliph, he was held to account by a member of the public with regards to the fair distribution of goods. (This is summarised).

The armour of Ali bin Khatab- the Caliph, was stolen by a Jewish man, he did not have the Jewish man arrested but he took it to court, but as Ali did not have a witness or his son was the witness, the judge ruled against Ali. The Jewish man embraced Islam on seeing the equality and justice showed by Islam. He offered to return the stolen goods but Ali did not take them back.

I want politics based on principles like this. Politics based on these principles can save the state. Not the corrupt politics we have now, leading the country to collapse. Is politics the name of a process where the poor are dying from poverty but the government does nothing about it? Is it politics that the politician allot massive plots of land for themselves and spend millions daily on their living whilst the millions of the poor public suffer from hunger and starvation, have not clothes to wear and no roof over their head. Is this politics? We reject such politics.

We reject politics where the country is not truly independent; and where terrorism is not eliminated; where Karachi has been turned into a war zone. We do not accept politics where nothing is done to alleviate poverty; where there is kidnapping; where millions have no water, gas and electricity; where people have to survive on selling their modesty. I want to save the politics that saves the state. I want the politics of Quaid-e-Azam (Mohammad Ali Jinnah) the founder of Pakistan; where there is unity, organization, love, brotherhood, that ends hatred and saves the country as one unit as opposed to it being broken up.

So there is a need to understand the actual issues. My agenda is not to prevent elections. My agenda is to reform the electoral system so that elections can give the country true leadership. I want to end the system where party tickets are bought by 50 million rupees. I want an end to this.

There is no constitutionality in this current political and electoral system. I want to revive the constitution. There is no enforcement of law and no rule of law. I want to bring back the rule of law. Rulings by courts are not enforced. I want to revive the courts according to the constitution. Governance does not exist. I want to revive this into good governance. Economy is in melt down. We want to stabilise the economy. We want to put an end to all levels of corruption. I don’t want a police officer of this country to take bribes from any citizen of this country I will raise the wages of police officers 2 fold 4 fold, if necessary, so that they do not have to take bribes and service the poor without bribes. I want the law and order of this country to be revived again.

We are now exporting terrorism. The Bali bomber was caught in Pakistan, when a suicide bomber caught a few days ago was not a Pakistani national. The attackers of the Peshawer airbase bombings appeared to be non-Pakistani. Then, don’t you think the game in Karachi has foreign hands behind it, who want to break up the country.

My point to political parties, courts, army,media and the 180 million population: if the elected governments cannot provide security, and cannot protect people from kidnappings, cannot provide food, medicine, clothes, education and maintain law and order, then such a government and system is unconstitutional, illegal and uncivilised and we will never accept it such a system.

Khayber Pakhtunkhwa, used to be renowned for peace, but now the government of Pakistan has no control over it. So what constitutional right does this government have? Same with Baluchistan, what right do you have in staying in power? When the state is weak internally then the enemy will interfere. We cannot complain of foreign interference when we are weak.

There was a time when we were the pride of the Muslim world due to our nuclear bomb. But now we are the laughing stock of the world. We are seen as a failing and corrupt state. Our politics, governance, economy has failed, weak stability, health weak, education weak, independence in danger, no transparency, no human rights, no security, no future for the country. Show me any department where we see any chance of improvement. We are collapsing, our politics is only about winning the next elections and engaging in political conspiracies and forming coalitions. Listen, if the politicians do not provide the rights to the people, then the 180 million people must themselves come out and gain their rights. Rights can never be achieved through begging but must be seized.

Has anyone thought, dozens of family members living in small houses all over the country; living in extreme poverty. People are selling their dignity, their faith just to survive.. Do you think elections taking place in such an environment is freedom of expression, democracy and constitutional. We must assess this. Poor have been kicked out of the system, so how can they save themselves.

For five years, corruption is at its peak, people are killed, and no one helps the people, then after 5 years the whole things begins again in the name of an election. We will not allow an action replay. We will not have an exploitative and corrupt election. We will have an election but after reforms in the system, after removing exploitation, and one that is free and fair and delivers freedom of expression.

On one hand we say that corruption is on the increase; the system does not deliver; there is no accountability; there is no constitutionality; Performance of government is falling; Pakistan is at number 139 in the world corruption list; in only four years it has fallen 22 degrees in state aptitude according to the World Economic Forum. Pakistan’s existence is in threat. Then we say that the army should not interfere. We are against interference of the army, but if you want to stop the interference of the army them we must run the government according to the constitution, have rule of law, make the parliament effective, make the electoral system free and fair, improve the performance of the government, bring a true democratic culture, bring justice. If the system runs smoothly then the army will never want to interfere but if your system has totally collapsed, then you cannot stop the interference from the army.

Having laid down all these points, now I am coming towards the constitution of Pakistan. I have said that whatever proposal that I am giving will be wholly according to the constitution of Pakistan. People talk of elections, but I will tell you what kind of elections the constitution desires. The whole agenda I give today will be totally according to the constitution of Pakistan. Now we will decide that we will not allow anyone to violate this constitution. I am also bound to this constitution. We will make the country’s leadership, electoral system, according to the constitution, we will make the constitution the ruler, and those who will violate the constitution will be kicked out.

What does the constitution say? Article 3 says, “The state shall ensure the elimination of all forms of exploitation.” I ask the supreme court, army, chief election commissioner, political parties, and the people of Pakistan, the exploitation that takes place during elections, of poverty, courts and jails, false cases, terrorism etc, have they all been removed before the election? Can a farmer run against his landlord? Will that be fair? Will that election be one of exploitation or freedom of expression? The constitution says that every form of exploitation should be eliminated. This is the responsibility of the state. I demand the enforcement of article 3.

Now let’s look at Article 9 of the constitution, it is about security of person, that there should be no threat to life or freedom. Now tell me in this election system, will a weak candidate and his supporters have no threats to their lives and freedom? The election commissioner has no law making authority. They say that the election commissioner is honest and independent, but it is like appointing an expert surgeon but he does not have the adequate instruments to carry out his surgery or an is appointed MS at an hospital but he has no authority to hire or fire the staff. The law making power is with the parliament, the chief election commissioner has no authority or power.

Article 37 States, “Promotion of social justice, and eradication of social evil; the state shall do this.” That it provides people economic justice, and all those evils that can affect freedom of expression and can affect the decision of the voter, all such deficiencies must be totally eliminated. I ask the national institutions and political parties; that have they a 100 % guarantee of eliminating these evils? If they have not then how can the election be according to the constitution? Not a single article is being implemented from these. Is this kind of government constitutional? People only remember one article of the constitution that elections must take place within 90 days. And the other 50 articles, as equally respectable and important, which nobody knows about. Who will enforce them?

Article 38 states, “The state shall ensure the wellbeing of the people.” So that powerful people cannot exploit them and they can freely express their views without any fear. Has this wellbeing been provided to the people? 180 million people, this is also your Pakistan, my respected media brothers it is also your Pakistan, political leaders and members of political parties it is also your Pakistan, institutions that provide justice it is also your Pakistan, soldiers it is also your Pakistan. My question is for everyone that according to article 38 has this guarantee been provided that the difference between rich and poor has been reduced to such an extent that no wealthy and powerful person can influence a poor and weak person in making his decision.

Article 38 also states, “… the concentration of wealth and means of production and distribution in the hands of a few to the detriment of general interest by assuring equitable adjustment of rights between employers and employees, and landlords and tenants.” So there must be a balance between the landlord and the farmers, between mill owners and workers, tell me is there this balance in this country? If a mill owner stands for elections, will the worker be free to vote for who he wants? If a landlord stands for election, will farmers be free to vote for who they want?

Tell me, if not a single article of this constitution is implemented, and emphasis is continually given upon holding elections in ’90 days’, so this election will NOT be a constitutional election.

Article 38(d) states that it is the responsibility of the state that people are not pressurized and there is no exploitation, blackmail, people are not influenced or pressurized by powerful people. It further states “…to provide the basic necessities of life, such as food, clothing, housing, education…” It also states that if someone is unemployed, ill or weak then his situation must be improved so that he cannot be influenced. The constitution imposes this condition. If these conditions are met then the elections will be constitutional. And if these conditions are not met then the election will never be constitutional and this nation will reject this unconstitutional election.

Article 38(e) states, “reduce disparity in the income and earnings of individuals.” Why should the disparity be reduced? It is because if there is immense poverty and immense illiteracy then people will not be able to vote freely. Powerful people will unduly influence them.

Now the question arises that all of these changes cannot be made in a few months. The answer is if people cannot protect themselves then at least the law enforcement agencies can protect them from thieves and robbers. If people are not so powerful and there is no empowerment then, a system should be setup before the election that no landlord can gather all his farmers like sheep and force them to vote for him; no capitalist or gangster can force the poor to vote for them. Until people are not provided full security through the police, law enforcement agencies and the army; so that they have the guarantee to the freedom of expression, that election will be unconstitutional. For this, legal amendments need to be made which will only take a few months. If poverty and education take years to resolve, but the government can provide protection so that the authorities are not used against voters, there is no rigging, the police and army provide full protection; only a few months are required for this. But no arrangements have been made for this nor will they be made. Two parties want to sit together and agree between themselves, so that they cannot commit electoral fraud and rigging between themselves. They are ensuring that no fraud is done with them, but who will prevent the fraud that is being done with the 180 million people of Pakistan?

Article 218(iii) states, “it shall be the duty of the election commission to organize and conduct the election and to make such arrangements as are necessary to ensure that elections are conducted honestly, justly, fairy and in accordance with law; and that all corrupt practices are guarded against.” The constitution has set 5 conditions for the election. Are our elections honest and fair? If these 5 conditions are met then the election will be according to the constitution. Up to now, no guarantee has been given to implement any of these conditions. The constitution is calling out but the law makers have their own interests, they do not want to conduct such an election. They just to hold a sham election and they want to buy votes. They want to return to the assemblies so that they can again start to loot the country. We will not allow this. We will only accept elections that are according to article 218(iii). I only demand the constitution of Pakistan to be implemented. Those who want to violate the constitution, the 180 million people will obstruct their path. Will you do this? [Crowds shout “Yes”]

People only remember the 90 days clause of the constitution but the rest of the constitution that I have quoted, are these clauses not authentic and respectable?

The Supreme Court gave a ruling on the law and order case in Baluchistan. They stated that because the Baluchistan government has failed in ensuring the safety and security of the Pakistani people, “it has lost its constitutional authority to govern the province.” This is the judgment of the supreme court of Pakistan. If one province does not have the constitutional right to govern due to the inability to provide security, then if the government of the whole country has failed to provide security to the country, so how can it have a constitutional right to continue to govern the country. In the Karachi killing cases the Supreme Court has stated that along with the Sindh government it is also the failure of the federal government. The supreme court states , “the provincial government and executive authority,…this failure has made the lives and properties of people insecure, as much as the federal government has also not protected the province.” The federal government has failed. When the supreme court of Pakistan has stated that the federal government has failed and it no longer has constitutional authority, so why give them constitutional power?

Similarly in the Asghar Khan case, the Supreme Court has stated that “the President of Pakistan will do right to all manner of people according to the law without favour.” He will not have loyalty with any political party. If he fails to treat all manner of people equally …” Then he will no longer be eligible to remain in that post. The Supreme Court has made this ruling in explaining the constitution. It states of the national institutions, or Army chief, or DG ISI support anyone, then these elections cannot be honest, free and fair and the constitutional mandate shall be negated. I ask you, have all these rulings of the Supreme Court been implemented? [Crowd shouts “No”]. They have not been implemented. If they have not been implemented then is there the rule of the constitution in this country? Is the system of government running according to the constitution?

The National Accountability Bureau (NAB), the government’s own institution has stated that there is daily 100 to 120 million Rupees corruption in the country. Admiral retired Bukhari, chairman of NAB, appointed by the government has stated that 70% of MNAs have not filed their tax returns. The law is that if income is more than RS 42000, it is compulsory to file the income tax return. The income tax ordinance, the laws on income tax, they state that those who do not declare their income and hide their earning will be liable to two years imprisonment. Its clause 192(a) states that there will be a punishment of 2 years imprisonment or a fine. My question is; are these people law makers or law breakers? If they do not fill in their tax returns then do they have a right to remain a member of this parliament? [Crowd shouts “No”]. Is this not open corruption? Is this not open crime? is this not a punishable offence?

Article 63(10) of the constitution states, that whoever does not pay his water, gas and electric bills, it is not permissible for him to become an MNA. If the bills accumulate to RS 10,000 and they are not paid within six months. Then how can a person become an MNA without paying taxes? If the elections are held without implementing the conditions set by the constitution, it will be tantamount to breaking the constitution. The nation will reject it; and we will not allow them to enter the parliament.

[Crowd: “we want change; we want change!”]

This was one thing: yesterday the parliament caught 81 MNAs, who held fake degrees from madrassas. These people did not even know the ABCs of the religious sciences. I say: shame on those people who receive fake degrees, and shame on those madrassas which give them out—those who sell this religion. The supreme caught after catching them, dismissed them. In the meantime the parliament removed the condition of having a degree to be an MNA. The parliament does those things which are always in its own interests; and it never does anything which is in the best interest of the nation. Those people, who were dismissed on account of holding fake degrees, were declared as being guilty of deception, within a space of 3 months, they were once again reinstated as members of the parliament after winning by-elections.

O people, do you want these lying, deceiving fraudsters to be your representatives in the parliament? [Crowd: “No”] ...these law breakers then make laws? [Crowd: “No”].

My question is not that whether there should be a condition set or not. I agree that the condition is no longer there, but my question is that has deception not been committed? My question is that the person who is uneducated, who had not completed his studies, and becomes an MNA by using fake degrees, how can he become an MNA? The constitution does not allow anyone to become an MNA through such deception. If without bringing these revolutionary changes to the election system, such deceptive people will once again become part of the parliament and they will become the representatives. Some of them are winnable, who will come back to the parliament. This joke will not come to an end. O people do you want to get rid of these fraudsters, or do you want to bring them back?

I want to tell you something important. According to the constitution of Pakistan, article 62 has a condition on the qualification of being an MNA. In clause F it says: ‘he is sagacious, righteous, non-profligate, honest, and ameen (truthful).’ These are the 5 conditions set by the constitution. Nobody can become a Member of the National Assembly if they do not fulfil these conditions.

Tell me the truth, give testimony: are these people righteous? [Crowd: “No”] Are there not drunkards amongst them, murderers, terrorists and tax evaders? [Crowd: “Yes”]

Now tell me the truth, with the exception of a few there are some good people amongst them, will people having these qualities become the members of the parliament? [Crowd: “No”]

If these thieves, without these changes to the electoral system, come back, will there not be a breach in the constitution? Therefore, it is my demand that the elections take place, but they only take place in accordance with the constitution. Some people had a misconception that I have come to abrogate the elections. No! I have come to make the elections in accordance with the constitution. If the elections can be done in accordance with the constitution within 90 days, then well and good; but if it cannot, then the constitution permits it to be done in a period longer than that. I want to cleanse the electoral system to bring in good people. Whether it takes 90 days or more…

No one has yet discussed this, neither any columnist nor any anchor. I am telling you something unique. If the electoral system cannot be cleansed within 90 days, the constitution gives permission for it to take longer, so long as the electoral system is done in accordance to the constitution. You will ask where this is written. It is written in article 254. It states: ‘Failure to comply with requirement as to time does not render an act invalid. When any act or anything is required by the Constitution to be done within a particular period and it is not done within that period, the doing of the act or thing shall not be invalid or otherwise ineffective by reason only that it was not done within that period’.

This is the first time the nation has heard this. And I am addressing the Supreme Court that they should read article 254. I ask the media and the political parties that when the change cannot be made in a space of 90 days, if it needs to take longer, it is not unconstitutional; rather it is valid and lawful. So what is more important: constantly repeating the rhetoric of 90 days or implementing the constitution fully?

Listen carefully, lest some international powers may allege that I am speaking against democracy. I want to clarify my stance to the international community. I want to make it very clear [spoken in English]:

I would like to make it clear, where we stand. Pakistan is a sinking ship now. And we want to save it. I am not here to derail Pakistan from democracy. In order to save our state, in order to save democracy, in order to save our political process, from collapse, we need world-class structural renewal, and we need change. It is too late for patchwork and piecemeal reforms. Incrementalism is no longer an option now, because Pakistan has already come within a disaster zone. Our country, our democracy, our state, our economy, our entire political and governmental system has become derailed. We need to bring about electoral reforms according to the demands of the constitution of Pakistan. We want to bring substantial reforms and change and through reforms we need to create an environment conducive to sustainable economic growth and social development. Through change and reforms we need to remove the opportunities for corruption to occur in the electoral process and the political process of our state. Through change and reforms we need to empower and enable the people to become true democratic citizens and through change and reforms we need to fight extremism and terrorism and we want to bring back peace and security. And through change and reforms we need to create an atmosphere of safety, stability, and prosperity. And through change and reforms we need to restructure our political and electoral system for the sake of true democracy. Now is the true time to change and now is the true real time for reforms, otherwise nothing would be left to change. And I would like to say: O my brothers, political leaders, how long will we deprive our country, our nation, and our people and Pakistan from a prosperous future? How long will we deprive them from civil liberties and freedom? How long will we deprive them from basic necessities of life? How long will we deprive them from the rule of law? How long will we deprive them from justice and social equality? How long will we deprive them from real education and health facilities? How long will we deprive them from job opportunities? We are already living in desperate times; millions of people of Pakistan are living in the chains of poverty. They have no clean water to drink. They have no food to eat. Their clothes are torn. They have no homes to live. Millions of people of Pakistan are destitute. They have no jobs, no business, no means of supporting for themselves, and they have no money to treat their sick children; and they are dying in the laps and arms of their mothers. They can’t take their children to the hospitals to get medical treatment. We are living by God in state of life of pain; we are living a life of anguish; we are living a life of misery; we are living a life of depravation. We want to come out of the state of fear and terror. We want to develop our future; sustainable, peaceful, progressive, developmental and democratic. We want terrorism to be eliminated from our country. We want killings to be eliminated. We want kidnapping to be eliminated from our country. We want to provide protection to the citizens of Pakistan. There is no protection, no right, no liberty, no business, no job; even people going in school buses, like Malala. Nobody is safe in this country. And the government has totally failed to provide protection to the life of their people, to the job of their people, to the freedom of the people, to the liberty of the people. They have failed to provide them job opportunities.

For the last 4-5 years, our socio-economic conditions are such that society cannot survive, where the divide between rich and poor, divide between the powerful and the weak, divide between the elected and the electors, divide between the ruler and the ruled, and divide between the leaders and the citizens is rapidly increasing. I want to tell the international community, from west to east, what is our position and what are our conditions. There is no political will to eliminate or minimize this situation. We want real democracy.

Real democracy is when an MNA wrongly fills in a form, his seat in the parliament is abrogated and he goes to jail for 18 months; if someone submits an incorrect expenses details they are jailed. In the West there are systems to ensure there is no corruption. People can see the expenses of their MPs on official websites. In Pakistan MNAs can do anything and they will get away with it. Millions of Rupees are taken through corruption; millions of votes are falsely registered; bribery; false cases being filed, shootings; favoritism, poverty, weakness etc. I want to ask can you even imagine having honest, free and fair elections in this atmosphere. Those who say bring change through elections, but which kind of elections?

In Egypt, Tunisia and Libya there was one dictator, but here there are hundreds of dictators, with the exception of a few, one in each constituency. The electoral system must be according to article 62 and 63. We want to have quotas for all walks of life to sit in parliament, farmers, labourers, agriculturists, etc. We want to ban selling of party tickets; and no shipping of voters to polling stations. Police officers will be transferred three months earlier so that no undue pressure is exerted upon anyone.

Europe has found a way to solve this. Italy’s government was failing. The IMF raised concerns so the European Court of Justice gave a ruling dismissing the Italian government. It handed the government to those people who could reduce the deficit, end corruption. They were given 2 years but they did it in a year; and started a process for a new election.

So why can we not take steps like these in order to reform our system? I do not want to delay or cancel elections but I want them to be according to the constitution in letter and spirit. So that honest people take part and free and fair elections take place. If elections take place in the same old way then the 180 million people will not allow this to happen. If those who violated the constitution are re-elected then the people will not accept it. People who have fought against military martial law must fight against political martial law. We will not accept the decisions made by two parties, in closed rooms; they cannot decide on a caretaker government. According to the 20th amendment in the constitution, they can be involved in this process but it does not restrict others from taking part such as the judiciary and army and all other stake holders; the care taker government must then not only hold elections but also change the system. If this does not take place then the people will reject such a conspiracy. I have made clear that we want elections according to the constitution. I give the government a dead line of Thursday the 10th of January 2013. If the whole system is not reformed according to the constitution, then on the 14th of January, 4 million people will go to Islamabad. This event has 2 million people here today. The march will begin on the 10th of January. Will you all go there? [Crowd shouts “Yes”]

We are peaceful and that march will be peaceful, as this event is peaceful.

On the Monday 14th of January I have called a sitting of the parliament of the people of Pakistan. Then decisions will be made there on the 14th of January.

Those watching at home, must leave their homes on the 10th of January? Will you leave? [Crowd shouts “Yes”]. Even if you have to sell your houses to pay for it will you do it? [Crowd shouts “Yes”].{END}