The Aam Aadmi of Pakistan

Same name, different ideals, but will it work?

Hardnews Bureau Delhi 

Buoyed by the remarkable debut and success of the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) in India, a party by the same name has been formed in Pakistan as well. Started by Arslan ul Mulk, a civil rights activist from Gujranwala, West Punjab, the party has been registered as Aam Aadmi Party with the Election Commission of Pakistan. 

Mulk says the idea behind founding the party was to work towards a Pakistan as dreamt by its founder Mohammed Ali Jinnah. “Is today’s Pakistan what Quaid-e-Azam Mohammed Ali Jinnah had envisioned? Is this a state where all are equal and enjoying the fruits of freedom?” Mulk says these are the important questions of the time. He said the present leadership had lost the essence of why Pakistan was created. “The AAP will strive for that cherished dream and vision,” he added. 

Mulk has also announced to sit on a hunger strike outside the Punjab Assembly next week. The party is demanding the acceptance of police reforms and the Anti-torture Bill in the current parliament session. 

According to him, he, along with twenty AAP workers were detained and tortured at Central Jail Gujranwala last month. “Physical assaults, illegal forced physical labour and detention in solitary cells kept for hardened criminals commonly known as ‘Chakis’ were meted out to us,” he said. He said his party would protest against police torture. 

“I have chosen hunger strike as an ultimate mode of political protest against pervasive injustice,” he said.