Dubai: Pakistani expatriates in the UAE say that they want to see their country corruption-free and a revamped judicial system to ensure equal justice for all and sundry.
They also want top quality education and healthcare system, and employment opportunities for the younger generation. They want to see Pakistan a tourist hub in the region and booming economy with ample investment opportunities for Pakistani expatriates and foreign investors.
Gulf News spoke to cross-section of Pakistan expatriates in the UAE on the occasion of 81st Pakistan National Day celebrated on March 23 to find out how they would like to see their country in future, what should be done to make Pakistan corruption free and what the main hindrances facing the country are.
This is how they responded
Mumtaz Muslim, Dubai-based businessman
I would like to see a lot of tourists in Pakistan. Tourism is the best source of income as well as employment and all we have to do in Pakistan is to put the right infrastructure in place.
As Prime Minister Imran Khan says, tourism promotes employment, economic activities as well as positive image of the Country.
I think the process of justice and accountability is the key to a prosperous, happy and a corruption free country. If our courts impart swift justice and decide cases on merits and not on personalities, we would be taking the right step in the right direction.
The people’s mistrust in the government due to our past experience is perhaps the biggest hindrance. That is why, people still avoid paying taxes and being part of the documented economy. In all progressive countries, citizens pay taxes because they know that this will be used for the development of the Country.
Ahmed Shaikhani, President Pakistan Business Council in Dubai
It is time that Pakistan must transform to become the top emerging nations in the world. To make Pakistan happy and corruption-free state, the government should maintain law and order in the country to ensure safety of life and property.
Secondly, the government should provide younger generation with international standard of education to compete at the world level.
We as a nation should change our approach towards daily matters. Instead of waiting for the government to solve our problems, we should take initiatives to help our people. We must focus on improving health and education in the country.
The government must look into the taxation system in the country because it is very complicated as people continue to evade taxes creating more economic problems in the debt-ridden country.
Shabbir Merchant, Dubai-based businessman and philanthropist
Pakistan with its dynamic youth has a very bright future. All we need to do is focus on our educational system and put all the resources on uplifting the literacy level. We must open doors for technology and encourage tech-based businesses.
If the government maintains the balance between trade promotion and revenue collection activities with no mercy for corruption, then I believe that nothing can stop progress and prosperity in our country. The government should also invited overseas Pakistanis to formulate policies regrading investment.
The small and medium enterprises (SMEs) are the back-bone of our economy, the government shall focus on their development to create more businesses and employment opportunities.
Sajid Iqbal Abbasi, businessman in Dubai
Pakistan has great potential and I want to see it the fastest growing country in Asia. I want to see Pakistan as the best place for safe investment not only for overseas Pakistanis but also for foreign investors.
Pakistan has been facing a number of issues. Corruption is crippling progress on poverty reduction, healthcare, education and economy. Pakistan needs judicial and political reforms to ensure human rights and speedy justice for all regardless of colour, cast and status of any individual.
Pakistan government must introduce strict laws to fight corruption in government departments. There is also need to improve governance at the grass roots levels to ensure progress in every field of life.
Dr Ateeque Naqvi, Dubai-based consultant
I would want to see Pakistan as an Islamic welfare state as was envisioned by Prime Minister Imran Khan. The government should ensure safety and security of all as it is a key to make progress. We would love to see Pakistan as a big player in international affairs.
To make Pakistan, happy, prosperous and corruption-free country, we need to have independent institutions working under the constitution of Pakistan. Currently, the justice system in Pakistan needs tremendous improvement. Speedy justice for all and sundry is the need of the hour to regain the trust of people.
To make any nation corruption free, we need to improve our education system to produce productive young generation with moral values.
I think the main hindrance in Pakistan’s development is the weak institutions and corruption-ridden political system.
Khalid Chaudhry, President, Pakistan Social Centre in Sharjah
This is my dream to see Pakistan prosperous in every field of life. Corruption is root cause of many problems in Pakistan as it is like a plaque, which has infected the society.
Corruption can be eliminated only through across the board fair accountability. Corrupt people should be exposed and brought to justice at every level and in every department.
There is no doubt that Pakistan is a resource-rich country but the main reasons for slow economic development are energy crisis, lack of quality education, unemployment and poor healthcare system. The government should earnestly deal with such issue above any political rivalries.
Khawaja Asif Kaleem, President Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf, Dubai
I want to see Pakistan as a prosperous state where the rights of all the citizens are equal and safe guided by the state. Where every fellow Pakistani can lead his live with dignity and honour.
Prime Minister Imran Khan has pledged to end corruption in the country and we believe he will be successful in his task. Also, revamping of the justice system to provide speedy justice, will lead the way to a happy and shining Pakistan, where every Pakistani will feel safe.
The way forward to end corruption and prosperity of Pakistan is and always will be to educate our people and provide them with appropriate opportunities to show their talent and allow them to be part of the country’s development.
Malik Zaheer Awan, Chairman, Council of Pakistani Engineers in UAE
I would like to see Pakistan as Islamic social welfare state. A country where nobody is above the law. I want to see my country out of the current economic crisis
We need to unite ourselves as a nation if we want to see our country emerge on international level. We need to fight against corruption at all levels. The government should make sure that every child must have access to education and healthcare.
We need to encourage educated people and intellectuals to come forward and play their role. The government should take strict measure to catch ‘corrupt politicians, businessmen and the bureaucrats. A merciless justice system should be developed to uproot corruption in the country.
Yasmeen Kanwal, Information Secretary, PTI, UAE
I want to see peaceful Pakistan with stable economy in future. The government should take steps to generate more job opportunities for young generations. Job seekers should be given equal opportunities without any favouritism. Enforcing the law strictly is the key to corruption free Pakistan.
The main hindrance in Pakistan’s development is the weak justice system. The discrimination of the rich and the poor while implementing the law and corruption are main hurdles in the progress of the country. Our government must take revolutionary steps to revamp the justice system to ensure the corrupt people are punished regardless of their political affiliations or status.
What is Pakistan Day
Pakistan Day or Pakistan Resolution Day is observed on March 23 to mark Lahore Resolution, also later given the name of ‘Pakistan Resolution’, passed at a grand public meeting organised by All-Indian Muslim League on March 23, 1940 in Lahore. It is celebrated as a public holiday in Pakistan. Special ceremonies including the parades by the armed forces are held in Pakistan. Flag hoisting ceremonies are held at Pakistani diplomatic missions across the world.
The resolution passed in Lahore proposed the creation of an independent state for the Muslims of the Subcontinent at the public meeting chaired by founder of Pakistan Qauid-e-Azam Mohammad Ali Jinnah. The resolution paved the way for the creation of Pakistan on August 14 1947.