Comment The 18th Constitutional Amendment: A Paradigm Shift


  • Mian Raza Rabbani


After the introduction of the 18th Amendment in the constitution, it is being asked to what extent the Amendment has addressed the issue of diversity in the country and has provided representation to these diversities in state institutions. I think the foremost thing, to mention in this respect, is the colonial mindset of our establishment. In the past, they extenuated further the same mindset hence we found ourselves in a state of denial regarding our cultural diversities. We tried either to minimize and suppress our cultural diversities or push them under the carpet fearing if they came to the fore and flourished, they, perhaps, would pose threat to the federation. But, I think the history of the world, particularly that of the third world countries, teaches us a lesson that more you promote and bring the cultural diversities to the fore and allow them to flourish within the structure of the state they induce greater synthesis in the national culture. Pakistani culture becomes rich with the amalgamation of regional cultural diversities. If we cast a glance on our own history, Shaheed Zulfikar Ali Bhutto’s government provided an opportunity to the regional cultures to develop. Sindhi, Pashto, Balochi and Punjabi folk tunes and dances, earlier limited to their respective areas, came to the national scene and became the part and parcel of the national cultural milieu. This is the only way a Pakistani culture would emerge with the passage of time. We should not be fearful of diversity rather we should use it to strengthen cohesion and solidarity of the federation.