Some weeks after the tragedy of the Lal Masjid in Islamabad, there remains widespread anger with the government of Pervez Musharraf, and disappointment with the failure of Islamic groups to offer effective opposition to it. ZAFAR BANGASH, Director of the Institute of Contemporary Islamic Thought (ICIT) considers some of the lessons of the episode for the country’s Islamic movement.1
As the political trouble sparked by the sacking of Pakistan’s chief justice in March shows no sign of abating, DR PERWEZ SHAFI of the Institute of Contemporary Islamic Thought (ICIT) tries to understand it using a model of political behaviour proposed by the late Dr Kalim Siddiqui.
The countrywide protests that began in Pakistan when President General Pervez Musharraf declared the country’s Chief Justice (CJ), Iftikhar Mohammad Chaudhry, “non-functional” on March 9 are continuing, with no sign of the crisis being resolved in the foreseeable future. For the CJ’s supporters, the ideal outcome would be the withdrawal of charges against him at the Supreme Judicial Council (SJC) – a forum for internal accountability of the judiciary – and his restoration to his position; in other words, a return to the status quo existing before March 9.
Already beset by numerous problems, both domestic and international, Pakistani president General Pervez Musharraf has shot himself in the foot again by taking on the country's judiciary as well. Justice Iftikhar Mohammad Chaudhry, the Chief Justice of the Supreme Court, was sent home for allegedly "abusing his authority", and placed under virtual house arrest.
President Pervez Musharraf’s dismissal of the country’s Chief Justice last month has developed into a major political crisis. DR PERWEZ SHAFI of the Institute of Contemporary Islamic Thought (ICIT) in Pakistan discusses the implications of the crisis.