Media Release: Pakistan with a score of 4.1 ranked at 113th out of 129 countries

March 25, 2011 

International Property Rights Index 2011 released
Report emphasizes connection between Property Rights and Well-being
Nepal, Sri Lanka, Kenya, Algeria perform better than Pakistan; India at 55; Bangladesh consistently at the bottom
In Gender Equality for property rights, out of 83 countries Pakistan ranked 69, Bangladesh at 66
Lahore March 25, 2011: Alternate Solutions Institute proudly announces the release of the 2011 International Property Rights Index (IRPI) today, which measures the intellectual and physical property rights of 129 nations representing 97 per cent of the world’s GDP. This year, 67 international organizations, including Alternate Solutions Institute from Pakistan, partnered with the Property Rights Alliance in Washington, DC and its Hernando de Soto Fellowship program to produce the 5th annual IPRI.

International Property Rights Index 2011 released
Report emphasizes connection between Property Rights and Well-being
Nepal, Sri Lanka, Kenya, Algeria perform better than Pakistan; India at 55; Bangladesh consistently at the bottom
In Gender Equality for property rights, out of 83 countries Pakistan ranked 69, Bangladesh at 66
Lahore March 25, 2011: Alternate Solutions Institute proudly announces the release of the 2011 International Property Rights Index (IRPI) today, which measures the intellectual and physical property rights of 129 nations representing 97 per cent of the world’s GDP. This year, 67 international organizations, including Alternate Solutions Institute from Pakistan, partnered with the Property Rights Alliance in Washington, DC and its Hernando de Soto Fellowship program to produce the 5th annual IPRI.
The IPRI uses three primary areas of property rights to create a composite score: Legal and Political Environment (LP), Physical Property Rights (PPR), and Intellectual Property Rights (IPR). Most importantly, the IPRI emphasizes the great economic differences between countries with strong property rights and those without. Nations falling in the first quintile enjoy an average national GDP per capita of $38,350; more than double that of the second quintile with an average of $18,701. The third, fourth, and fifth quintiles average $9,316, $5,065, and $4,785 respectively. Pakistan falls in the bottom quintile.
With regard to Pakistan, in a broader perspective property rights continue to be a challenge. This year Pakistan’s score on the scale of IPRI improved to 4.1 from last year’s 3.9 (out of 10). In terms of ranking, its position is static this year. Last year it was at 104th, this year at 113th but it is due to the increase in the number of countries ranked this year (129 than last year’s 125). In the all three components, Legal and Political Environment, Physical Property Rights, and Intellectual Property Rights, Pakistan recorded slight increases. Its IPRI ranking improved 0.2 points, Legal and Political Environment ranking 0.3, Physical Property Rights 0.2, and Intellectual Property Rights 0.3.
After a slight improvement in 2009, Pakistan’s IPRI decreased in 2010, then in 2001 improving a bit again. Out of the 3 components, it is Legal and Political Environment followed by Intellectual Property Rights which drags down Pakistan’s ranking. On the whole, Pakistan’s rank / score stand at: Legal and Political Environment 124 / 2.8; in Physical Property Rights 67 / 6.0; and Intellectual Property Rights 111 / 3.6.
Surprisingly, Nepal (100 / 4.4), Kenya (100 / 4.4) and Algeria (107 / 4.3) performed better than Pakistan. Notably, Sri Lanka, by scoring 5.6 ranked at 77th position.
In Gender Equality, Pakistan ranked at 69 out of 83 countries. Interestingly, Pakistan, Bangladesh and Nepal appear to be lacking in securing property rights to women, and fall in the same group. Bangladesh scored 5.2 and ranked at 66, and Nepal 5.3 and 65. Chad and Zambia were placed at the bottom with 2.1 and 3.4 score, and Singapore and Hong Kong topped with full score.
Sweden and Finland grabbed the top position with a score of 8.5, and Venezuela fell to the bottom, 129thposition, with a score of 3.4. Bangladesh stood at 125th with a score of 3.6. India was placed at 55th position with 5.6 points. Nepal scored 4.4 points and ranked at 100.
Hernando de Soto, whose work in property rights lead to the inception of the IPRI, commented on the 2011 publication: “Weak property rights most commonly seen in the developing world. As the citizens of these countries are in the greatest need of economic growth, it is crucial that their physical and intellectual property be granted protection. This Index seeks to educate politicians, economists, academics, and entrepreneurs about the necessity to protect property rights around the world.”
The International Property Rights Index provides the public, researchers and policymakers, from across the globe, with a tool for comparative analysis and future research on global property rights. The Index seeks to assist underperforming countries to develop robust economies through an emphasis on sound property law.
For more information and copy of the IPRI 2011, contact the Institute at
For a soft copy of the IPRI 2011, visit: www.internationalpropertyrightsindex.org

New Urdu BooK: “Pakistan Mein Riyasti Ashrafiya Ka Urooj” Published

Media Release:

New Urdu BooK: “Pakistan Mein Riyasti Ashrafiya Ka Urooj” published

The book invents the slogan, “Ashrafiya Ka Naheen, Sab Ka Pakistan” and provides it with philosophical foundations

Author says, “This book can change the fate of Pakistani citizens.”

Media Release:

New Urdu BooK: “Pakistan Mein Riyasti Ashrafiya Ka Urooj” published

The book invents the slogan, “Ashrafiya Ka Naheen, Sab Ka Pakistan” and provides it with philosophical foundations

Author says, “This book can change the fate of Pakistani citizens.”

Lahore February 21, 2012: Alternate Solutions Institute released today Dr. Khalil Ahmad’s latest book, “Pakistan Mein Riyasti Ashrafiya Ka Urooj” (The Rise of State Aristocracy in Pakistan). This book holds Pakistani Ashrafiya as the biggest obstacle in the way of the supremacy of the constitution and the rule of law in Pakistan. The book demonstrates that the Pakistani Ashrafiya lives via its capture of the state, state institutions, and the resources of the state. Not only has it captured the Pakistani state, but through its capture of the state institutions, it has hijacked the market also. The heart of the Pakistani Ashrafiya, i.e. Politicians, the Establishment, and the Bureaucracy, have made the constitution subservient to their interests; whereas security of fundamental rights to the ordinary citizens is almost an impossibility.

The author says that this phenomenon needs to be understood with the help of a new term, “State Aristocracy” or “State Ashrafiya.” Pre-modern Ashrafiya used to derive its power and authority from certain distinctions, such as racial superiority, while Pakistani Ashrafiya derives its power and authority from the state. Be it wealth or clout, privileges or subsidies, the Ashrafiya through the state, appropriates everything for itself. And what comes to the lot of the ordinary citizens is endless sufferings at the doors of government offices, the courts, and the polling stations.

This book shows the way to transform the Ashrafi Pakistan into Everyone’s Pakistan. It invites all the classes and groupings of Pakistan to the cause of rule of the constitution and the law; and exhorts them to stay on a singular achievement of human civilization, i.e. law. The book dwells on the topics which include Ashrafiya’s historical perspective; Pakistani state and the Ashrafiya; formation of Pakistani Ashrafiya; the rise of the State Aristocracy (Ashrafiya); Ashrafiya’s philosophy of man; the nature and the constitution of Pakistani Ashrafiya; freedom from Ashraf-dom; Ashrafi classes of Pakistan; the heart of Pakistani Ashrafiya.

The author of the book, Dr. Khalil Ahmad, has been teaching Philosophy, and is mainly devoted to Political Philosophy. He is one of the founders of the Alternate Solutions Institute, a think tank dedicated to the strengthening of fundamental rights and the rule of law in Pakistan. His most important work is, “Charter of Liberty” which highlights the importance and demand of making fundamental rights a core and the supreme value of the constitution.

The price of the 156 page book is Rs.220. For more information and purchasing the book, the Institute may be contacted at:

Phone: 0303 – 4000 161

Email: info@asinstitute.org

Address: Room No. 32, 3rd Floor, 5/6 Jail Road, Lahore

New Paper – “Pakistans Democratic Impasse” Published

Media Release: 

New paper – “Pakistan’s Democratic Impasse” published 

The paper indicts politicians as the main culprit for failing the state of Pakistan 

The paper falsifies the myth of blaming the Pakistan Army for the ills Pakistanis facing 

Author argues constitution authorizes politicians to rule, not the Army

Lahore December 29, 2012: Alternate Solutions Institute released today Dr. Khalil Ahmad’s latest paper, Pakistan’s Democratic Impasse – Analysis and the Way Forward.Already this year, he has published two books, “Pakistan Mein Riyasti Ashrafiya Ka Urooj” (The Rise of State Aristocracy in Pakistan, February 2012), and “Siyasi Partian Ya Siyasi Bandobast: Pakistani Siyasat Ke Pech-o-Khum Ka Falsafiyani Muhakma” (Political Parties Or Political Arrangements: Philosophical Critique of Pakistani Politics, July 2012).


       Media Release: 

New paper – “Pakistan’s Democratic Impasse” published 
The paper indicts politicians as the main culprit for failing the state of Pakistan 
The paper falsifies the myth of blaming the Pakistan Army for the ills Pakistanis facing 
Author argues constitution authorizes politicians to rule, not the Army
Lahore December 29, 2012: Alternate Solutions Institute released today Dr. Khalil Ahmad’s latest paper, Pakistan’s Democratic Impasse – Analysis and the Way Forward. Already this year, he has published two books, “Pakistan Mein Riyasti Ashrafiya Ka Urooj” (The Rise of State Aristocracy in Pakistan, February 2012), and “Siyasi Partian Ya Siyasi Bandobast: Pakistani Siyasat Ke Pech-o-Khum Ka Falsafiyani Muhakma” (Political Parties Or Political Arrangements: Philosophical Critique of Pakistani Politics, July 2012).
The paper elaborates the above-stated position which the author took in both of his books and in a number of articles already published in newspapers and on his blog (www.NotesFromPakistan.blogspot.com). He holds that after so many stumbles through the 65 years of its existence, Pakistan has finally come to be: a government of the criminals, by the criminals, for the criminals. He singles out politicians as the main and the lone culprit for failing the citizens of Pakistan.
The author says his paper derives its rationale and insight from a reading of the constitution of Pakistan which considers the fundamental rights and the articles protecting these rights and freedoms as the core value of the constitution. His paper looks beyond those articles and books, or that specific approach, which analyze the democratic failure of Pakistan in a historical, sociological, economic, or political perspective only or in a way combining them all, and tries to see the history, sociology, economics and politics of Pakistan with an eye focused on the scheme of things the constitution of the country put in place to run the state of Pakistan.
Also, the author has tried to see the past, present and future role of politicians or political parties and Pakistan Army through the lens of the constitution, and thus his standpoint which is unprecedented and goes against the prevailing wisdom of putting the responsibility for the failure democratizing the society of Pakistan wholly and solely on the shoulders of Pakistan Army, may seem pleading the innocence of those Generals who imposed Martial Laws and disfigured the constitution; however, this paper in addition to castigating the anti-constitutional acts of the Generals of the Pakistan Army holds that it is the inherent inability of the political civilian governments which did not prosecute and punish them, and in that sense vehemently censures that approach of absolving the politicians totally as unconstitutional and derisive to the constitutional manner of bringing order in a society.
The author concludes that this paper not only sees bits of an already delayed indictment of the Pakistani politicians, but an opportunity also to conduct, on the basis of the same paper, a thorough political audit of the performance of the political leaders and the political parties as the sole culprit who misled the political evolution of Pakistan, and constantly breached the trust of the citizens of Pakistan, as a result of which people of Pakistan were deadlocked into an impasse with no way out or forward to live their life as they wish but to live in servitude to the politicians.
In addition to suggesting ways to overcome this impasse, the author says that by putting all the burden of failures on politicians, constitutionalism and civilian supremacy in Pakistan may be strengthened, and this in due course will bring rule of law as an established norm in the country, and will bring a political culture never ready to tolerate any unconstitutional acts of any actors and flouters of the law of the land, and thus will ultimately help prepare ground not only for a decriminalized democratic polity but for democratic culture and values also to take root and flourish, overcoming the Pakistan’s chronic democratic impasse.
The author of the book, Dr. Khalil Ahmad, has been teaching Philosophy, and presently is mainly devoted to Political Philosophy. He is one of the founders of the Alternate Solutions Institute, a think tank dedicated to the strengthening of fundamental rights and rule of law in Pakistan. His most important works are “Pakistan Mein Riyasti Ashrafiya Ka Urooj” (The Rise of State Aristocracy in Pakistan), and “Charter of Liberty.”
Downloade the paper: Pakistan’s Democratic Impasse
For more information, contact the Institute at: Email: info@asinstitute.org

Media Release: New Urdu Book, “پاکستانی کشاکش” Published

Lahore, February 22, 2014: Alternate Solutions Institute today released Dr. Khalil Ahmad’s latest Urdu book, Pakistani Kashakash: Tehlee-O-Taadeel aur Aagay Barhnay ka Raasta (Pakistani Armageddon: Analysis, Resolution and the Way Forward).

پاکستانی کشاکش: تحلیل و تعدیل اور آگے بڑھنے کا راستہ


Media Release: New Urdu Book, “پاکستانی کشاکش” Published

Lahore, February 22, 2014: Alternate Solutions Institute today released Dr. Khalil Ahmad’s latest Urdu book, Pakistani Kashakash: Tehlee-O-Taadeel aur Aagay Barhnay ka Raasta (Pakistani Armageddon: Analysis, Resolution and the Way Forward).

پاکستانی کشاکش: تحلیل و تعدیل اور آگے بڑھنے کا راستہ

The book attempts an analysis of the present predicament of the Pakistani state and society with reference to their response to the barbaric threat to the life and liberty of ordinary citizens. The analysis also focuses on the dubious role of politicians and political parties in allowing the criminal entities to encroach upon the constitutional rights of the citizens.

The book concludes that both the state and the political parties have failed to protect the citizens’ right to life, property and liberty ensured in the constitution of the country. After a clear-cut analysis, the book proposes a way forward exhorting concerned and enlightened sections of society to found a new political party with a one-point agenda, i.e. the protection of life and property and rights of the citizens at any cost and without any discrimination. The proposed new party needs to be organized on moral and constitutional grounds leaving behind all the unwanted paraphernalia of ideologies and ideological meanderings.

The author, Dr. Khalil Ahmad expressed hope that if the proposed political party focuses on this one-point agenda and works in line with moral and constitutional dictates, it may bring both the Pakistani state and society out of the present suicidal crisis.

Dr. Khalil’s other published books include: پاکستان میں ریاستی اشرافیہ کا عروج (The Rise of State Aristocracy in Pakistan); سیاسی پارٹیاں یا سیاسی بندوبست: پاکستانی سیاست کے پیچ و خم کا فلسفیانہ محاکمہ (Political Parties or Political Arrangements: A Philosophical Critique of the Intricacies of Pakistani Politics); Charter of Liberty (میثاقِ آزادی).

Book: پاکستانی کشاکش: تحلیل و تعدیل اور آگے بڑھنے کا راستہ
Author: Dr. Khalil Ahmad
Pages: 40
Price: Rs.65

The book can be purchased from the following:

Lahore:
Suchet Kitab Ghar, F-11, Sharaf Mansion, Queens Road, Ganga Ram Chowk, Lahore
Phone: 042-3630 82 65 Email: suchet2001@yahoo.com

Islamabad:
Saeed Book Bank
Al-Rehman Centre, F-7 Markaz,
Jinnah Super, Islamabad, Pakistan
Phone: 92-51-2651656, 57, 58 (3 Lines) Fax: 92-51-2651660
Email: sales@saeedbookbank.com

For more information, contact the Institute at: info@asinstitute.org

Media Release: New Book, “Pakistan’s Democratic Impasse: Analysis and the Way Forward” Published

Lahore April 8, 2014: Alternate Solutions Institute released today Dr. Khalil Ahmad’s new book, Pakistan’s Democratic Impasse – Analysis and the Way Forward. Already this in 2012 and this February, he has published three books, “Pakistan Mein Riyasti Ashrafiya Ka Urooj” (The Rise of State Aristocracy in Pakistan, February 2012), “Siyasi Partian Ya Siyasi Bandobast: Pakistani Siyasat Ke Pech-o-Khum Ka Falsafiyani Muhakma” (Political Parties Or Political Arrangements: A Philosophical Critique of the Intricacies of Pakistani Politics, July 2012), and, Pakistani Kashakash: Tehleel-O-Tadeel aur Aagay Barhany ka Rasta (Pakistani Armageddon: Analysis, Resolution and the Way Forward, February 2014).


Media Release:

New book – “Pakistan’s Democratic Impasse” published

The book indicts politicians as the main culprit for failing the state of Pakistan

The book falsifies the myth of blaming the Pakistan Army for the ills Pakistanis facing

Author argues constitution authorizes politicians to rule, not the Army

Lahore April 8, 2014: Alternate Solutions Institute released today Dr. Khalil Ahmad’s new book, Pakistan’s Democratic Impasse – Analysis and the Way Forward. Already this in 2012 and this February, he has published three books, “Pakistan Mein Riyasti Ashrafiya Ka Urooj” (The Rise of State Aristocracy in Pakistan, February 2012), “Siyasi Partian Ya Siyasi Bandobast: Pakistani Siyasat Ke Pech-o-Khum Ka Falsafiyani Muhakma” (Political Parties Or Political Arrangements: A Philosophical Critique of the Intricacies of Pakistani Politics, July 2012), and, Pakistani Kashakash: Tehleel-O-Tadeel aur Aagay Barhany ka Rasta (Pakistani Armageddon: Analysis, Resolution and the Way Forward, February 2014).

The book elaborates the above-stated position which the author took in three of his books and in a number of articles already published in newspapers and on his blog (www.NotesFromPakistan.blogspot.com). He holds that after so many stumbles through the 65 years of its existence, Pakistan has finally come to be: a government of the criminals, by the criminals, for the criminals. He singles out politicians as the main and the lone culprit not only for failing the citizens of Pakistan, but betraying their trust also.

The author says his book derives its rationale and insight from a reading of the constitution of Pakistan which considers the fundamental rights and the articles protecting these rights and freedoms as the core value of the constitution. His book looks beyond those articles and books, or that specific approach, which analyzes the democratic failure of Pakistan in a historical, sociological, economic, or political perspective only or in a way combining them all, and tries to see the history, sociology, economics and politics of Pakistan with an eye focused on the scheme of things the constitution of the country put in place to run the state of Pakistan.

Also, the author has tried to see the past, present and future role of politicians or political parties and Pakistan Army through the lens of the constitution, and thus his standpoint which is unprecedented and goes against the prevailing wisdom of putting the responsibility for the failure democratizing the society of Pakistan wholly and solely on the shoulders of Pakistan Army, may seem pleading the innocence of those Generals who imposed Martial Laws and disfigured the constitution; however, this book in addition to castigating the anti-constitutional acts of the

Generals of the Pakistan Army holds that it is the inherent inability of the political civilian governments which did not prosecute and punish them, and in that sense vehemently censures
that approach of absolving the politicians totally as unconstitutional and derisive to the constitutional manner of bringing order in a society.

The author concludes that his book not only sees bits of an already delayed indictment of the Pakistani politicians, but an opportunity also to conduct, on the basis of the same book, a thorough political audit of the performance of the political leaders and the political parties as the sole culprit who misled the political evolution of Pakistan, and constantly breached the trust of the citizens of Pakistan, as a result of which people of Pakistan were deadlocked into an impasse with no way out or forward to live their life as they wish but to live in servitude to the politicians.

In addition to suggesting ways to overcome this impasse, the author says that by putting all the burden of failures on politicians, constitutionalism and civilian supremacy in Pakistan may be strengthened, and this in due course will bring rule of law as an established norm in the country, and will bring a political culture never ready to tolerate any unconstitutional acts of any actors and flouters of the law of the land, and thus will ultimately help prepare ground not only for a decriminalized democratic polity but for democratic culture and values also to take root and flourish, overcoming the Pakistan’s chronic democratic impasse.

The author of the book, Dr. Khalil Ahmad, has been teaching Philosophy, and presently is mainly devoted to Political Philosophy. He is one of the founders of the Alternate Solutions Institute, a think tank dedicated to the strengthening of fundamental rights and rule of law in Pakistan. His most important works are “Pakistan Mein Riyasti Ashrafiya Ka Urooj” (The Rise of State Aristocracy in Pakistan), and “Charter of Liberty.”

For more information, contact the Institute at: Email: info@asinstitute.org

Book Review – Climatism! Science, Common Sense, And The 21st Centurys Hottest Topic

This is 2017, April 21. Breaking news is flashing on the screens of news channels all over the world:

“A whole tribe living deep into the woods in Bangladesh arrested by International Climate Police on the charges of using fossil fuels ”


Book Review: The greatest dogma of our times
Book: Climatism! Science, Common Sense, and the 21st Century’s Hottest Topic
By Steve Goreham
New Lenox Books, IL, USA, 2010
Review: The greatest Dogma of our times
By Dr. Khalil Ahmad
This is 2017, April 21. Breaking news is flashing on the screens of news channels al over the world:
“A whole tribe living deep into the woods in Bangladesh arrested by International Climate Police on the charges of using fossil fuels ”
The day is not far away when news like this will no longer remain breaking for the news-hunters. The book, “Climatism! Science, Common Sense, and the 21st Century’s Hottest Topic,” provides enough evidence to that effect. First, it warns us that if the Barbarian march of Climatists is not halted, we will soon find us facing devil on the one side of us, and the deep sea on the other. The devil is the Climatist Procrustes, and the deep sea, the regressive economic and societal growth. Second, this book gathers in one place all the evidence showing how the Climatist Camp is going on its backfoot and how the realism, science and common sense is making a comeback.
This book by Steve Goreham, an electrical engineer and business executive, is sort of a shorter encyclopedia containing all the salient features of the debate on the notion of global warming. The plan of the book comprises three parts. In the first part, it examines the science on which global warming alarmism bases itself. The second part weighs the remedies suggested, applied and enforced to stop the “global warming.” The viability of renewable energy solutions, that Climatists believe humanity must adopt to avoid greenhouse gas emissions, is evaluated in the third part.
No doubt, the writer is neither a Climatist Alarmist – nor a Climate Skeptic either. He is a Climate Realist, a position that derives its inspiration from sound science and common sense. He presents arguments and evidence from both sides – and lets the reader see and find the truth himself, though he does express his own position too.
Instead of building his case, like the Climatists, on unsound science and political ideology, and such old streaks as ‘Back to Nature,’ Rousseau’s anti-industrialization revolt, a not so recent form embodied in the Club of Rome: “The Earth has cancer and the cancer is man.” (1974), and a more recent form in the notion of Sustainable Development, the writer presents all the evidence and data that is being produced by those who have no say in the UN IPCC, and are being “refuted” by popular interests and governments, but who have authority and honest commitment in their fields of science.
Thus, Steve’s encyclopedic book is probably the first such work that prepares the ground for a full-scale assault on the greatest dogma of our times – Climatism. As it exposes the inquisitional tendencies of the self- proclaimed do-gooders, it comes in handy for all those who need to face and fight the dogma with full force. The book deserves to be stationed, by the Realists, in the forefront to win the war against the Climatists.
The reviewer is founder/head of the Alternate Solutions Institute.

Urdu Book “سیاسی پارٹیاں یا سیاسی بندوبست” (Siyasi Partian Ya Siyasi Bandobast) Published

Media Release:

Urdu Book “سیاسی پارٹیاں یا سیاسی بندوبست 
(Siyasi Partian Ya Siyasi Bandobast) published

The book attempts a philosophical analysis of Pakistan’s political parties

The book smashes a number of political myths and cliches

Author dubs political parties as enemies of the citizens and focuses on how to make them friends of the citizens

Lahore August 10, 2012: Alternate Solutions Institute released today Dr. Khalil Ahmad’s 2nd Urdu book, “Siyasi Partian Ya Siyasi Bandobast: Pakistani Siyasat Ke Pech-o-Khum Ka Falsafiyani Muhakma” (Political Parties Or Political Arrangements: Philosophical Analysis of the Intricacies of Pakistani Politics).His first book, “Pakistan Mein Riyasti Ashrafiya Ka Urooj” (The Rise of State Aristocracy in Pakistan) came out in February this year and has been acclaimed as path-breaking.


Media Release:

Urdu Book “سیاسی پارٹیاں یا سیاسی بندوبست 
(Siyasi Partian Ya Siyasi Bandobast) published

The book attempts a philosophical analysis of Pakistan’s political parties

The book smashes a number of political myths and cliches

Author dubs political parties as enemies of the citizens and focuses on how to make them friends of the citizens

Lahore August 10, 2012: Alternate Solutions Institute released today Dr. Khalil Ahmad’s 2nd Urdu book, “Siyasi Partian Ya Siyasi Bandobast: Pakistani Siyasat Ke Pech-o-Khum Ka Falsafiyani Muhakma” (Political Parties Or Political Arrangements: Philosophical Analysis of the Intricacies of Pakistani Politics). His first book, “Pakistan Mein Riyasti Ashrafiya Ka Urooj” (The Rise of State Aristocracy in Pakistan) came out in February this year and has been acclaimed as path-breaking.

The new book holds that the citizens are in a fix vis-à-vis political parties of Pakistan. It is the same political parties which act as their enemies when in power, and at the same time it is these parties which may act as their friends. The author deals with this thorny issue in a befitting manner. He says that these political parties after obtaining votes destroy the lives of the citizens, as is happening now; and it is the same parties which may bring peace, security and prosperity in their lives. How to make this miracle happen? This question is the focus of the book.

The book explains in detail how and when political parties come to act as political parties, and why most of the time they remain just political arrangements seeking party loyalties and protecting party interests.

The book argues that what demands citizens ought to put before the political parties, and what demands they must never. It is this deception all the politics of the political parties derives from and is based on. It is this parrot in which lies the life of the political parties. The citizens must not ask for such things from the political parties which they cannot provide. This is the Welfarist Agenda of the political parties which tantalizes the citizens, and they are trapped. The citizens should empower political parties for doing only those things which form their fundamental duty: protection of citizens’ life, property and their rights. This is the Protective Agenda.

The book further argues that the citizens must not hand over their whole life into the hands of political parties. If they do that, as to some extent they have already done so, then the political parties will act as the owners and disposers of their lives. In fact, the political parties are already substantiating such claims of theirs over the life of the citizens. Thus, they use the citizens as the fuel for their ideas and ideologies to flourish. In fact, they are already thrown the citizens into such fires. The book concentrates on such issues, and points out a way out of this situation which may make political parties to act as the friends of the citizens.

The book also attempts detailed philosophical analysis of certain political parties such as Pakistan People’s Party, Pakistan Muslim League (N), Pakistan Muslim League (Q), Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaaf, Jamat-e-Islami, Jamiat-e-Ulama-e-Islam (F), and classifies them all as Welfarist. The book shows why most of the political parties, such as PML (Q), PTI, PPP, are just political arrangements, and not political parties proper.

The author of the book, Dr. Khalil Ahmad, has been teaching Philosophy, and is mainly devoted to Political Philosophy. He is one of the founders of the Alternate Solutions Institute, a think tank dedicated to the strengthening of personal freedom and rule of law in Pakistan. His most important works are “Pakistan Mein Riyasti Ashrafiya Ka Urooj” (The Rise of State Aristocracy in Pakistan), and “Charter of Liberty.”

The price of the 128 page hard-bound book is Rs.200.

For more information and purchasing the book, the Institute may be contacted at:

Phone: 0303 – 4000 161

Email: info@asinstitute.org

Address: Room No. 32, 3rd Floor, Landmark Plaza, 5/6 Jail Road, Lahore

Afraid Of Trade?

The MFN then, even if its name has been watered down to Non-Discriminatory Market Access to remove the misimpression that India will be treated better than any other country we trade with, is something we need to pursue.


[This article first appeared in The News on March27, 2014. The writer is a journalist based in Karachi.]

At The Hague, Nawaz Sharif said in all seriousness that he doesn’t want to make the difficult decision of granting free trade status to a neighbour because he thinks his involvement might influence the elections in that country.

Nawaz Sharif was either fooling us or himself when he said that Pakistan wouldn’t give Most-Favoured Nation (MFN) trading status to India because he didn’t want to give a leg up to any party in the run-up to general elections in that country. If any agreement we reach with the government of the day in that virulently anti-Pakistan country would impact the polls it would surely be in favour of the opposing party.

The prime minister was slightly more honest when he said that another reason for the delay was the lack of consensus on the issue at home, which is true enough if consensus is defined as receiving a seal of approval from the military.

The way things have been, opposition of the military to a policy may usually be good enough to convince all right-thinking people that the said policy is worth pursuing but when it comes to the MFN status we should pause for a bit and weigh all the costs and benefits. Most analysis of greater trade with India has tended to concentrate on the political benefits we may accrue. And it is true that when it comes to our eastern neighbour any breakthroughs in the political realm should be taken seriously.

Ever since the Mumbai attacks of 2008, India has been suspicious of our actions and intent to an extent that cooperation has become all but impossible. Breaking the vicious cycle of mistrust is a worthwhile end in and of itself. How we should go about remedying past mistakes, however, should be a matter for debate that does not lead to us simply agreeing to every proposal that appears on the horizon and misjudging how much value it will have in breaking the political stalemate.

Giving India MFN status has the potential to eventually lead to greater economic benefits for both countries but it is not the instant panacea it has been made out to be by optimists of cross-border peace. Any free trade agreement will be purely theoretical until the hard work is done to build the infrastructure to turn this trade into reality.

The border crossings at Wagah right now cannot handle the volume of trade that we expect should MFN become a reality and, on top of that, there are significant regulatory hurdles that hinder the movement of goods and services. A lack of banking services, poor infrastructure at the Wagah border and other such issues will mean that even a promise on paper to increase trade may not actually amount to much on the ground.

Trade between the two countries right now is anaemic both in absolute and relative terms. For India trade with Pakistan amounts to less than half of one percent of its total trade; for us the figure is only about five percent. There is no doubt that these figures need to be improved upon and that the MFN is the best way to do that but until physical improvements are made at and near the border, an agreement on its own will be worth very little and our exports to India will see a negligible increase

Significant opposition to the MFN exists at home because, as with all free trade pacts, it will have both winners and losers. In Pakistan the losers will be those industries which, for whatever reason, have not yet developed to the stage where they can compete with cheap imports. Our fledgling auto industry is the most obvious example, where even the ability to import spare parts at a cheaper price than they would get from a current trading partner like China will not be a benefit strong enough to withstand the competition of cheap imported cars from India.

The overall impact on our balance of payments should still be positive, especially if both countries take trade facilitation measures like allowing for easier movement across the borders and developing an electronic payment system. Our exports in cement, fruits and sporting goods among other things to India should increase manifold and the money we get from these exports, if put to good use, can help the general welfare of the country.

The MFN then, even if its name has been watered down to Non-Discriminatory Market Access to remove the misimpression that India will be treated better than any other country we trade with, is something we need to pursue. The only snag is that expectations that the agreement will bring immediate economic benefits need to be tamped down for being as unrealistic as the voices of doom that warn against trade with India.

Going through with it, however, depends on whether Nawaz Sharif has the courage to make decisions that pit him against the powers-that-be.

Hopeless in Pakistan

That’s the story of the last 67 years. The story is going to be retold if the politicians do not take heart to challenge the actors be they state, i.e. security establishment, or non-state, i.e. Taliban and other violent groups. And if the ruling politicians let the security establishment do what it like, and do not subdue it to play its constitutional duty, they will once again betray the millions of teeming citizens who are living a hopeless life in Pakistan.


Lahore: The cities and suburbs of Pakistan are bursting with millions of teeming citizens, old and young, men and women and children alike. They earn their livelihood by small selling of goods or services which unimaginably involves hard labor with meager income. Or they are employed by private entrepreneurs who have to incessantly struggle against the vagaries of state’s regulators and tax officials. They form the larger chunk of a population of 18 million plus. It is they who cast vote to send a political party in the parliament, but cherish no hope this will ameliorate their life conditions they know from their past experience. This is one side of the picture.

The other side reveals itself in the headlines of the daily newspapers and news channels. One newspaper’s headline reads as: army chief pays morale boosting visit to ISI HQ (Inter-Services Intelligence Headqarters). Another headline says: defense ministry seeks cancellation of Geo’s license. It’s in the wake of a murderous attack on a prominent journalist and Geo News’ popular talk show host, Hamid Mir. He has survived despite six bullets injured him seriously and is under treatment in a hospital. His brother, Amir Mir, a known journalist, allegedly put the blame on the ISI and its head Lieutenant General Zaheer-ul-Islam saying Mir told him he feared they would kill him. One breaking headline news tells ‘Pakistan successfully test fires Hatf-III, a short range ballistic missile.’ Another newspaper highlights Chief of Army Staff, General Raheel Sharif’s visit to the ISI HQ and his statement that ISI is a “strategic institution” and its role is crucial in national security. The murmurs of a martial law are once again making rounds.

This side of the picture presents a state mired in its own internal fights with various institutions at each other’s throats. The same Pakistan Muslim League (Nawaz) which supported the cause of the restoration of the deposed judges is trying to rein in the Supreme Court by trimming the powers of the judicial commission which has an edge in the appointment of judges of the apex and high courts. Then there is Pakistan Army and the ISI which claim to be the uncontested savior of Pakistan. Though, India is no more number one enemy, and has been replaced by Taliban; however, it seems the security institutions are more occupied with the anti-Pakistan elements which in their perception abundantly populate media and civil society, two bastion of public opinion. It may be mentioned that not lately an Urdu feature film, Waar (War) was shot and released with the collaboration of the ISPR, public relations wing of the Army. Also, there is talk of an exclusive television channel for the use of Army to counter the Indian propaganda.

In this picture where do the politicians stand, whom the citizens bring into power? Pertinently this picture lacks the lines and shades of governance, and is blank so far as public provision of justice and basic social services is concerned. Hungry of energy, not only the entrepreneurship is desperate, ordinary life is disturbed. Electricity availability has somewhat improved under this government as compared to the previous one; but the core issues such as circular debt, a stifled market and state’s monopoly over the distribution of electricity are not going to be addressed soon. The scarce natural gas proves to be an apple of discord for which textile, fertilizer and other lobbies vie fiercely.

The present forecasted growth rate is lurking in the range of 3 to 4 %; but IMF puts it at 3.1 %. The average rate of inflation is hovering between 8.5 and 9.5 %. And the budget deficit for the current fiscal year is in the range of 6 to 7 %. As for the infrastructural priorities, the present government is hitting the wrong notes, and its urban sensibility is questionable; the cities are getting huge amounts of money being spent on un-needed projects, such as flyovers in Lahore. The roads in cities and their peripheries and especially in rural areas are in quite bad shape, or there is none at all. Potable water is a dream for most of the people. Healthcare is almost non-existent or do not match the number of patients it targets.

Another area of the picture represents the dismal state of the public transport, which has over the years deteriorated steeply. Not only can be seen crowds of commuters waiting at the bus-stops and buses tightly packed, there are as many traffic jams which consume sufficient number of hours of their life daily. To this must be added the statistics of road accidents killing countless citizens for which ultimate responsibility rests with the government, since rules and laws regulating driving license and traffic on the roads, though written in the books, are never implemented. According to Rescue 1122 service, just within one day 572 accidents were reported from 36 districts of Punjab last year. In this regard, the death statistics is too horrible to see: this April 20, in Sukkur district a collision between a bus carrying about 60 passengers and a trailer took 42 lives, and out of 27 dead 14 were children and 13 women, with 17 others injured.

Additionally, there is terror of the Taliban and other violent groups which on their own contribute to the disfiguration of the state of Pakistan. The government’s recent talks with the Thereek-e-Taliban brought a relief to the ordinary citizens; the frequency of the suicide blasts and indiscriminate killings saw a substantial reduction. But the issue stands unresolved and there is a long war ahead to fight the brunt of which is for the ordinary citizens to bear.

Constitutionally a civilian political government is in driving seat which came to power last year after the first elected civilian set-up completed its five-year stint. However, it appears that the state of Pakistan is not being run by the civil rulers; other encroachers of their constitutional powers, such as security institutions and agencies, are obstructing the way they may want to govern and it is with them that the citizens pin hopes. But the state of Pakistan is entangled in its own fights and this cancer is eating up the resources which may otherwise be utilized to provide the ordinary citizens with protection of life and property, justice and basic social services. That’s the story of the last 67 years. The story is going to be retold if the politicians do not take heart to challenge the actors be they state, i.e. security establishment, or non-state, i.e. Taliban and other violent groups. And if the ruling politicians let the security establishment do what it like, and do not subdue it to play its constitutional duty, they will once again betray the millions of teeming citizens who are living a hopeless life in Pakistan.

[The writer is a political philosopher and is author of various books, including one seminal, The Rise of State Aristocracy in Pakistan (in Urdu).]

Property And Property Rights

One view is that property and law are born together, and remain together. When there was no law, there was no property, take away the laws a property ceases. In more recent times, constitutions of individual states have safeguarded the property rights.


The term property usually refers to tangible things, say for example, tools, clothing, furniture etc. Property is regarded in the owner’s complete command. The well-known English jurist ‘Blackstone’ stated that property is an absolute right and contains with at free use, enjoyment, disposition without hindrance except by the authority of law. However, the recent definition of the term property emphasizes different notions, the new definition denotes existence of a legal relationship between persons and the property. It is now often defined as a bundle of rights such as right to possess, use, manage, income earning, consumption, destroy, modify or to alienate.

There are different perspectives on property, for example, occupancy.

The Roman principles relating to occupancy are the source of modern international law on the subject of capture in war and of the acquisition of sovereign rights in newly-discovered countries. It is considered as the natural mode of acquiring property.

In fact this concept leads to creation of private property for an individual. The mode of acquisition of property has been considered necessary by the Natural Law Philosophers for the following reasons (a) Individual is the best judge to procure for himself; (b) The element of certainty in respect of rights creates an order in the society (c) By defining rights an environment is created for a more peaceful state. On the other hand John Locke has recognized the right of property on the basis of labor that produces it, and advocated limited government by following the contract theory and principles of citizen’s property rights. In order to minimize the utility, the utilitarian’s justified the right to property. In the words of Benthem, the idea of property consists of an established expectation in persuasion of being able to draw an advantage from the things possessed according to the nature of case.

One view is that property and law are born together, and remain together. When there was no law, there was no property, take away the laws a property ceases. In more recent times, constitutions of individual states have safeguarded the property rights.

The modern economic theories of Adam Smith and Max Weber also justify the property right on divergent concepts and criticize the rules of property law, hence there is no single theory in this regard, there are multiple approaches.

One can note the importance of personal property, because the property is either personal or real. In case of real property one has the right of restitution which is an action in rem. And for other property interests, the owner had only personal actions to recover damages. For example, the issue of title determination of property came up before the eighth circuit of US Court of Appeal (Black Hills Institution of Geological Research & South Dakota Schools of Mines and Technology1) and the question before the court was whether or not soil was land? The issue emerged in respect of determining the status of Fossil as part of land. The court held that the Fossil was land since the Fossil had for millions of years been an ingredient of the earth and as such its beneficial ownership belonged to the owner. This raised many questions, for example, when the property is held in trust the sale made by its owner is valid or void, the distinction between personal and real property2, status of fixtures3, and the impact of transformation4.

At common law, all found property is generally categorized as (i) abandoned property (ii) lost property; (iii) mislaid property; (iv) treasure trove; and (v) embedded property. Where lost or abandoned property and treasure trove is found, the finder acquires right to possess. However, the recent trend of the courts is against recognizing the finder keepers’ rule of treasure trove. The courts now view this principle as dubious heritage and misunderstood application inconsistent with the values and tradition [Corliss v. Wender].5

Then there are questions of bailment where the duty of reasonable care is an important element while discharging the duties and liabilities. Where a hotel without due diligence delivered the abandoned purse of a hotel guest to an unauthorized person, the court held them guilty of negligence and awarded damages.6

Property when transferred to new owners passes with the bundle of rights previously held by the transferor. However, if one does not own it, he cannot sell it. The law in fact protects the true owner. For examples, a thief cannot sell the stolen goods and a purchaser of such goods will be at loss as the seller is incapable of passing of the property rights. A limited exception to this rule is that of a bona fide purchaser who gets a better title than her seller had. This issue was the subject matter in the case of Charles Evans BMW Inc. v. Williams, an individual namely, Hodge purchased a car from Williams by issuing a bogus check. Hodge sold the car to BMW by masquerading as Williams. Williams and BMW took cross positions. The court of first instance allowed the petition of Williams asking for to restore the possession. The said order was challenged in appeal on the ground that BMW did purchase the vehicle in good faith. The appellate court reversed the order and declared that in the circumstances, BMW’s purchase was in good faith and the company acquired a good title.

The issues related to the transfer of property include, gifts, finder’s rights, bailment and status of gifts. A gift is a voluntary transfer of property to another without compensation. However, one of the conditions of gift is that delivery must take place, that is, physical delivery or a constructive or symbolic delivery, may be by an instrument of gift. In the case of Simpson v Simpson the district court of appeal of Florida concluded that where there is no evidence of delivery, physical or constructive, there was no gift.

Similarly a finder has a better right against others except the real owner to keep the possession of found goods. (See Armony v. Delamirie, Bridges v. Hakesworth and South Staffordshire WaterCo.v Sharman). In all these cases the finder’s right to retain the found goods was upheld. In all these cases no real owner could be/was traced. These decisions show that title and possession are important elements of law of property.

Where a personal property is delivered by one person to another for holding it for a specified purpose, such possession is known as bailment. In the case of Buena Vista Loan Bank v Bickerstaff, the court held that keeping of goods in a Banker’s Locker creates a bailment and it is incumbent on the bank to keep the goods with due care and diligence and where exercise of ordinary care is not there, the act will constitute negligence, the standard of care is an important factor in such disputes. Where a bailer establishes that there existed a relationship of bailment, and the bailer failed either to return the goods or returned them in damaged condition, the burden of proof passes onto the bailer to show that goods were handled with due care.

Regarding the cases covered by gifts. ‘Gift causamortis’ doctrine is an exception, since conditions imposed on gift are not enforceable. However, in engagement ring cases, generally fault based determination is preferred to award the ring in equity and to follow the rule of ring return.

(The writer is an advocate and is currently working as an associate with Azim-ud-Din Law Associates Karachi)

1. 12F 3d 737, 513 U.S. 810 (1994)

2. Crops once, property yielding rent becomes personal property.

3. A fixture is legally part to the real property.

4. It becomes real property after the transformation Black Hill case shows that the objects can move between real and personal property.

5. Court of appeal of Idaho, 2001 (34 P. 3d 1100),

6. Shamrock Hilton Hotel v Caranas 488 S.W. 2d 151