The Overseas Pakistanis should be considered assets of the state rather than being associated with any specific political party. While it is true that overseas Pakistanis can play a vital role in the development and progress of their home country, their political affiliations and party preferences can vary greatly. Overseas Pakistanis often contribute to the economy through remittances, investments, and knowledge transfer. They may also participate in philanthropic activities, support social causes, and engage in political discourse. However, their political leanings are diverse and can align with different parties based on personal beliefs, values, and interests.
The political views and preferences of overseas Pakistanis, just like any other group of individuals, can be influenced by various factors, including their experiences, exposure to different ideas, and individual priorities. While they can collectively contribute to the well-being of the country, it is not accurate to assume that they universally belong to a specific political party or have uniform political opinions. Meanwhile, in democratic societies, political affiliation is a personal choice that individuals make based on their own judgment and assessment of political platforms and candidates.
Overseas Pakistani are patriotic and contributing extensively in the development of the country. They are sending billions of dollars in Pakistan every month in order to uplift the country economically. However, few political leaders of PTI are even making them controversial by instigating and suggesting them not to send money in Pakistan through legal channel.
If they do so, then their patriotism will be under question. It is important to differentiate between patriotism and political affiliation. Patriotism refers to love, loyalty, and devotion to one’s country, its people, and its values. It is possible for overseas Pakistanis, or anyone in any country, to have a deep love for their country without being tied to a particular politician or political party.
While political beliefs and preferences may influence an individual’s level of satisfaction or dissatisfaction with the direction of their country, but they should not involve and listen to any such suggestion which asked them to become rebellious against incumbent government and leaders of the country. People can express their patriotism by engaging in constructive criticism, advocating for positive change, and participating in the democratic process, including voting and expressing their opinions. If they are contributing for the well-being of the country, they are true well-wisher of the country. Otherwise, they are cult for the country.
Cult-like behavior, on the other hand, typically involves an excessive and uncritical devotion to a charismatic leader or a specific ideology, often with an authoritarian undertone. It is characterized by a lack of independent thinking, blind obedience, and an unwillingness to question or challenge the leader or the group’s beliefs. In a healthy democracy, citizens should be encouraged to think critically, analyze policies, and engage in open discussions about the direction of their country. While it is natural for individuals to have preferences or align with certain political figures or parties, it is important to maintain independent thinking, respect diverse opinions, and prioritize the well-being of the country as a whole. Ultimately, patriotism should be based on a genuine love and concern for the nation and its people, rather than being contingent upon a particular political leader or party.
Remittances play a significant role in the economic stability and development of many countries, including Pakistan. Overseas Pakistanis contribute substantially to the country’s economy through the remittances they send back home, which provide valuable foreign exchange reserves, boost consumption, and support livelihoods for families in Pakistan. It is true that reducing or stopping remittances would have adverse effects on Pakistan’s economy. The decrease in foreign exchange inflows could lead to currency devaluation, reduced purchasing power, and potentially hinder economic growth. Additionally, families who rely on remittances for their day-to-day expenses and basic needs would face financial hardships.
It is important for the government and policymakers to recognize the significance of remittances and create an environment that encourages overseas Pakistanis to continue sending money back to their families and investing in their home country. This can be done through various means, such as providing attractive investment opportunities, improving the ease of doing business, and ensuring a secure and efficient remittance infrastructure. While it is natural for countries to have geopolitical rivalries and conflicts, it is crucial to separate economic considerations from political differences. The well-being of the people should always be the top priority, and policies should be designed to promote economic stability and growth, regardless of political dynamics. Addressing economic issues and fostering an environment that supports remittances and encourages overseas Pakistanis to contribute to the country’s development can help Pakistan achieve sustainable economic growth and reduce its vulnerabilities.
Patriotism often calls for unity and collective efforts to address national issues and overcome obstacles. It is indeed important for citizens to come together and support their country in times of need. During periods of economic, social, or political difficulties, it is crucial for individuals to prioritize the well-being and progress of their nation. This can be done by actively participating in constructive initiatives, supporting policies aimed at national development, and contributing to the betterment of society through various means.
Standing with one’s country does not mean refraining from political engagement or critical thinking. In fact, a healthy democracy encourages citizens to express their opinions, engage in peaceful discussions, and advocate for positive change. Constructive criticism, when done with the intention of improving the country, can lead to necessary reforms and better governance.
When it comes to propaganda and individuals working for their own self-interests, it is important for individuals to exercise critical thinking and be discerning about the information they encounter. It is wise to question the motives behind certain narratives, especially when they seem to serve narrow agendas. In any society, there may be individuals or groups who prioritize their personal gains over the well-being of the country or its citizens. Recognizing and being cautious of such motivations is important for making informed decisions and avoiding manipulation.
To navigate through different perspectives and understand the truth, it is advisable to seek multiple sources of information, verify facts, and consider diverse viewpoints. Engaging in open dialogue, promoting transparency, and encouraging accountability can help counteract the influence of propaganda and ensure that decisions are made in the best interest of the country as a whole. Ultimately, it is crucial for individuals to remain vigilant, think critically, and base their judgments on reliable information and evidence. By doing so, they can contribute to a more informed and responsible society.
The writer is Islamabad based regular contributor.