From Ayaz Amir’s column in The News today:
Charged times give birth to desperate actions. The roughing up of Arbab Ghulam Rahim and Dr Sher Afgan Niazi are pointers to the public mood. Anyone associated with the Musharraf regime becomes a legitimate target of public wrath. And public wrath, almost by definition, carries within it the seeds of anarchy.
No one can condone such behaviour but that is not the point. The important thing is to understand why seemingly normal people behave the way they do when they see a symbol or representative of the near-defunct Musharraf order (although people around the beleaguered president still seem desperate for some magic potion that could give a fresh lease of life to their discredited champion).
Why was Naeem Bokhari roughed up? Why the anger against Arbab Rahim? Why the madness (and it was madness) which overcame lawyers and members of the public when they got wind of Sher Afgan’s presence at a lawyer’s office near the Lahore High Court?
Because eight and a half years of Musharraf, eight and a half years of his ruinous policies, have distorted the psyche of the Pakistani nation. We weren’t like this when Musharraf arrived on the scene. But we have become like this after eight and a half years of tinpot disaster: economic policies serving the interests of the rich, a foreign policy at the service of the United States, sundry military operations on our own soil against our own people, leaving a trail of blood from the mountains of Balochistan and Waziristan right to the heart of Islamabad.
Read the entire op-ed here