Imperial Protocol - BY: Munir M Hasan, PhD

These days a lot of debate on the Pakistani TV channels is being shown about the appearance of the sons of the Prime Minister - Mr. Nawaz Sharif - before the Joint Investigation Team (JIT). Leaving aside other aspects of this investigation, I wish to say something on the protocol being given to the sons of Prime Minister. They are given the protocol like the Prime Minister himself although they are not holding any public appointment and are not engaged in any official works.

It reminds me of a story of a former Prime Minister of the land of "mother of democracies", the Great Britain. During his tenure as Prime Minister once his minor daughter was caught by the police for drinking alcohol. In Britain, minor children are not allowed to drink alcohol. So it was an offence under the law, although not a major offence. The police officer, knowing well that she was the daughter of the Prime Minister, took her to the police station for completing further legal formalities. The responsibility of minor children partly lies on their parents. So, the officer (not a senior officer like SP, DIG or IG) without taking any permission from his senior officers but to do his duty, called the Prime Minister on telephone and told him about the incidence. To take his daughter back home, the Prime Minister was asked to come to the Police Station to sign some papers. On this occasion, going to the Police Station was not the official duty of the Prime Minister and it was his personal affair. So, the Prime Minister took his private car and driving the car himself without any protocol, came to the Police Station, signed the papers and took his daughter from the Police Station.

People in the Muslim world in general and the religious leaders in particular, while giving the examples of equal treatment under the law, give examples of the companions of the Prophet (pbuh). Although true, these are the stories of the distant past. Large number of such glaring examples can also be seen even now in the present times. However, these stories come from the non-Muslim states. It is a shame for the rulers of the Muslims states who call themselves Muslims, but behave much below the dignity of an honest and law-abiding person.

Posted on Jun 11, 17 | 11:29 pm