A stereotyped address amid friendly fashioned boycott
MABAD - Like many others including dignitaries sitting in the galleries, I was also least interested in the opposition parties friendly fashioned boycott of President Zardaris address to joint sitting of the Parliament Tuesday.
What really had surprised me the most was President Zardaris triumph in calming all and sundry to put his message loud and clear. Those in the press gallery were already aware of the opposition parties protest plans and their extremities. Given their plans and past practices, it would be naive to believe they could ever act to cross their limit at least in the presence of those who control their destinies; therefore, they had opted for an incoherent but peaceful walkout from the House. As observed the services chiefs and ambassadors including Carmon Munter duly acknowledged this democratic symbolism of the opposition parties. Perhaps that was why Ch Nisar, Leader of Opposition in National Assembly, later opted to ventilate his venom and party point of view at press conference at the Punjab House.
Presidential address started much later than originally scheduled and President Zardari smoothly finished of with it in 20 minutes time amid desk thumbing by the treasury benches. He started his counted fourth consecutive presidential address to the joint sitting with condemnation of the desecration of Holy Quran by a fanatic in Florida. President Zardari sought a parliamentary resolution urging the UN due role on this crucial issue. As a political guru, he had rightly availed the opportunity to sensitise the issue of global important ostensibly to divert attention from the government compulsions in pushing the US to tender apology over the drone attack in North Waziristan on March 17 that left many innocent people dead.
Even though many were expecting from Supreme Commander to touch the issue, he avoided perhaps because of the presence of US Ambassador Munter along with other foreign dignitaries in one of the dedicated galleries. As a matter of course, President as supposed to be, had focused on highlighting the achievements of the PPP-led ruling coalition, but these were largely the reiterations.