Living with ghosts

Living with ghosts The Pakistanis love ghosts which are now present in every walk of life. “It’s a grave issue,” Mr Right said, “They may be dead in the eyes of the others but they breathe, walk and draw salaries like other workers.

They even demand pay hike because of increasing prices. Ghosts are living creatures, no doubt.”“You must be referring to ghost employees of the Sindh government,” I said. “They number 40,000 and cost Rs10 billion annually to the Exchequer according to provincial information minister. She said that ghost workers formed around 10 per cent of the total workforce. I was amazed by 
her statement.”“For me, 90 per cent are ghost employees who are never seen in their offices before lunch time because of the rush hour traffic,” Mr Right said. “I think we should stop complaining about ghosts because this is the only area where we have been witnessing a steady growth over the years,” I said. “There are 25,000 ghost schools in the country which only exist on paper. Out of them around 8,000 are in Sindh.”

“Same is true about many hospitals, clinics, roads and bridges, “I pointed out. “They exist in the people’s dreams only, yet the government spends lot of money on these ghostly entities, thanks to democracy.”“A large number of ghost voters have been discovered in the existing voter lists as many lovers of democracy have enlisted their dead parents and their cows and bulls too as voters,” Mr Right said. “And the apex court wants the Election Commission to correct the lists, but wise men think it is against the very culture of democracy which gives equal rights to both the dead and 
the living.”

“Nobody can deprive a person of his right to vote even after death,” I said. “And democracy lovers strongly defend this right of the dead man because nobody knows if the poor fellow was ever able to cast his vote himself when his was alive.”“Democracy is the best bet for the dead to come to life,” Mr Right smiled. “That’s why you find the majority of people so rabidly defending democracy despite all its failures.”

“The result is that we see ghosts everywhere,” I continued. “And the nation seems to be relishing the era of the dead. Laws seem to have died long ago and court verdicts fail to revive decision–makers in government who are in a state of coma.”“Don’t forget that the passage liked most by ghosts is a dead end,” Mr Right pointed out. “No wonder all bold decisions of the apex court and its orders to chase notorious and corrupt spirits reach a dead end.”

“You seem to have no hope that the memogate scandal, many high profile murder trials and other probes into sensitive national issues, including NRO, will ever reach a logical conclusion,” I said. “No, I fully believe in supernatural phenomenon,” Mr Right stressed. “If the holy heaven’s intervention could find the ghost of Osama Bin Laden hiding in an Abottabad compound, timely help by divine providence could also unravel the mysteries of the unknown in Pakistan’s politics to bring a positive change.”

“I hope you are not referring to Imran Khan’s so-called tsunami, amateur theatricals of Nawaz party or displays of absurd oratory by other political actors,” I said.“All of them want a perfect government,” Mr Right said.“And what is a perfect government?” I asked.  “A perfect government means a government of their own party which does not walk on the crutches of coalition,” Mr Right grinned.“Ah, it will be a perfect democracy then,” I said.“Sorry,” Mr Right retorted. “There can be no perfect democracy in our country. Rulers feel a ‘ghost democracy’ is better for the people. Everybody talks about it always but it exists only on paper like a ghost school. This has happened in the past and this will happen in the future.” – Khaleejnews