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Business Recorder

Published Date: Sep 20, 2016

Civil-military relationship very fragile: Babar

"Civil-Military relationship is very fragile, at the moment and we are not on the same page," Senator Farahatullah Babar said. Speaking at the seminar titled "Civil Military Relations: Challenges and Way Forward," organized by Sustainable Development Policy Institute on Monday he said, "The trust deficit between the two is evident and without a sustainable civil-military relationship, country cannot move forward."
He said both Islamabad and Rawalpindi are equally responsible for damaging this relationship. Military does not consider itself accountable to the civil institutions which have a historic background. He criticised PTI for damaging civilian authority through the politics of dharma. He said there should be a parliamentary committee on national security to maintain oversight on security matters. The committee should be empowered enough to administer accountability at all level.
Earlier, Lieutenant General Abdul Qayyum (Retd), Senator Pakistan Muslim League Nawaz (PML-N) said that respect for the Constitution and strengthening the democracy is the only way forward for progress. He said that whenever there was military coup in Pakistan, both the institution of army and the country suffer. If we do analysis with responsibility, all sides are equally responsible for difficulty in relations, he added.
We should not have extremely critical views regarding our army. With the passage of time thing would get better. Now the judiciary is doing good job, we have vibrant civil society and free media, he added. Imtiaz Gul, Executive Director of Center for Research and Security Studies said that democracy should not be used as vehicle to get to the powerhouse and, fulfil personal interest. He said politicians should learn from their past mistakes.
"The relationship can only improve when civilian side act with integrity and honesty. Only than they trumped military establishment easily", he added. Dr Ayesha Siddiqa, Independent Social Scientist and Author of Military Inc said, "The Prime Minister is implementing the policy that he does not own. The problem lies in Pakistan colonial bureaucratic power structure, which is the major reason of the current situation." Zahid Hussain, senior journalist and author said that it is evident that in the past several years the power has tilted towards military, and there is no doubt in it.