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The Chains that Shackle the Masses—A Prologue to a Sociological Analysis of Pakistan’s

Political Rallies
By Ahsan Qazi

I am disheartened at what I see in Pakistan. A call to a Naya (New) Pakistan has been made, but the political process is the same, the political allegiances are the same, and the people who gather as a crowd fall in the same trap repeatedly. Unfortunately, there is no Naya Pakistan.
What we are seeing in Pakistan is rather a mashup of old ways that are naturally being pushed by the tide of time to form into something newer that we do not know what it is. Without a careful craftiness, fresher ideas executed with intelligence, Pakistan will not unleash its full potential. Pakistan is at a major risk politically and socially. Why? A group amongst us exists that has taken Pakistan’s economic progress and the effects of globalization that sucked Pakistan into its gravitational pull as a testament to Naya Pakistan. The very group measures the military might of Pakistan, the CPEC deal that came after decades later when it should have arrived much sooner, and the technological growth and coins it as the foundation of Naya Pakistan. Perhaps, the ideas of Gustave Le Bon are foreign to this group. LeBon observed in his psychological study of crowds that “The great upheavals which precede
changes of civilizations such as the fall of the Roman Empire and the foundation of the Arabian Empire, seem at first sight determined more especially by political transformations, foreign
invasion, or the overthrow of dynasties.” For Le Bon, another fundamental explanation fits here and rightly so. He points out that “a more attentive study of these events shows that behind their
apparent causes the real cause is generally seen to be a profound modification in the ideas of the peoples.” Le Bon’s such reflective insight requires from us our own deep sociological analysis of
the behavior of the crowds in Pakistan’s political rallies. The crowd comes out to push for the idea of Naya Pakistan collectively, but people who are involved in the rallies do not know within
the movement of Naya Pakistan what the actual Pakistan will look like. Individually, all question governance and express frustration over what has been happening since 1947.
All gather to express what a Naya Pakistan should look like but once a small group actually merges into a larger group, it takes on the ideology of the larger group, which is an ideology of the political parties. Again, starts the bidding of the old political parties that have
stalled the emergence of a reformed government and Pakistan’s progress up to this point. This is where the fundamental change needs to happens. Le Bon correctly pinpointed that “the
sentiments and ideas of all person in the gathering take one and same direction, and their conscious personality vanishes.” Therefore, when the crowd assembles in the name of Naya Pakistan, it gets sucked into the old ideals of the political party, which we all have come to realize no longer align with the current demand of time. Our politics is no longer domestic. We are constantly putting off fires, created abroad for us and sparked by our neighbors. The politician who we trust will bring us to a Naya Pakistan are bickering internally, steering the masses away from laying the foundations of Naya Pakistan. A much needed and much profound awakening is needed that will come in the form of in-depth sociological analysis of the crowd that gathers at the Pakistani political rallies. This is the reason that all political rallies in Pakistan lack the affect needed to reform the government and the society at large. The original and fresher ideas vanish; hence, a sociological insight will enlighten the masses to approach socio-political issues in Pakistan intelligently that I will bring before the public in the coming days.

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