KARACHI BOOK LAUNCH REPORTED IN DAWN ON 5th March, 2018
Left to right: Hanan Abbasi, Marvi Memon, Wasim Sajjad, Nisar Memon, Shoaib Sultan, Maliha Jilani and Iftikhar Babar
Nisar A Memon launches his book ………………………………………….
February 17, 2018; Islamabad: Nisar A. Memon’s book “INSIGHT INTO THE SENATE OF PAKISTAN” launched today. The launch was addressed by Wasim Sajjad former: President of Pakistan and Chairman of Senate of Pakistan; Shoaib Sultan Khan Chairman Rural Support Program; MNA Marvi Memon Minister of State / Chairperson of Benazir Income Support Programme; Iftikhar Ullah Babar former Secretary Senate; Hanan Abbasi President of Youth Assembly of Pakistan and the author.
Excerpt from Foreword by Wasim Sajjad………
There are very few books about the functioning of parliament in Pakistan, particularly the Senate. This is an important institution and people are generally aware that it is a legislative body but its internal working and its exact role is not known to the general public. The book by Nisar Memon fills that gap and provides an interesting and readable account by an insider who took active part in debates and activities of the Senate. His book becomes more interesting as it is personal account and captures the interest of the reader as he goes through the various issues and activities which are debated and discussed by the writer.
He has discussed several burning issues like national security and the problems internal and external posed by terrorism. The book would show how this matter was discussed in its various facets and how this would dominate many discussions in the Senate.
He has written with expert knowledge about water and environmental issues which are critical for Pakistan in the years to come. He has also written at length about Gilgit-Baltistan to which he is closely attached and for whose people he developed as special affection. He has highlighted the importance of Gilgit-Baltistan and the impact its development will have not only on the people of the area but also on the prosperity and wellbeing of the country. In a special chapter devoted to social issues and service to people he has discussed the havoc caused by the earthquake in 2005 and the contribution made by him and the efforts by the then Government to rebuild broken infrastructure and bring normalcy to the destroyed lives of the people.
The book is a useful addition to the literature on the Parliament of Pakistan. It is a must read for anyone who wishes to study the politics in the country and the evolution of the democratic process in Pakistan.” Wasim Sajjad, Former: President of Pakistan and Chairman Senate of Pakistan.
Excerpts from Review Comments………..
“Senator Nisar Memon has written an interesting account of his six years’ tenure in the Pakistan Senate. As a member of three Senate Committees on Defence, Defence Production and Water Resources, he has presented in Chapters 3-7 a concise summary of the substantive work of these committees accomplished during that period on many important issues and problems. I wish other parliamentarians will follow Nisar Memons’ footsteps and record their recollections and views for the guidance of future generations.” Sartaj Aziz, Deputy Chairman Planning Commission
“For a layman, like me, Insight into the Senate of Pakistan was an eye opener. Memon has laced the prosaic subject with personal anecdotes which makes it very interesting reading The book is full of such objective reporting. I would commend it to all laymen, politicians, administrators or academics alike”. Shoaib Sultan Khan, Chairman Rural Support Programme Network
“This book is a unique attempt, possibly first of its kind, of presenting and recording the detailed account of not only the personal parliamentary, governmental and political experience of a learned person like Senator Memon, but also a descriptive narration of Pakistan’s specific parliamentary procedure and history. The manner author has penned down the details with minor as well as minute observations on matter relating to his parliamentary performance is highly commendable and bespeak his command and knowledge over the subject.” Roshan Khursheed Bharucha, former Senator and Balochistan Minister
“Senator Memon has given thoughtful expressions to his experience covering various aspects of the political and socio-economic dimensions of that era. His emphasis on National Security and process of law within the Constitution of Pakistan is praise worthy. It should be an eye opener to public at large and researchers of the amount of work that goes in Senate and its Committees. I hope coming generation of senators will benefit from this reading.” Farooq H. Naek, Former Chairman Senate of Pakistan
I am delighted this book recalls the commitment of our Pakistani brothers, particularly in the Senate of Pakistan, in fighting shoulder to shoulder with Kashmiri’s on diplomatic and moral front for the liberation from Indian occupation. The young and old, men and women are offering unprecedented human sacrifices for their rights and it is heartening to note that the people of valley are supported by people of AJK and Pakistan’s parliament and government.” Sardar Masood Khan, President of Azad Jammu & Kashmir.
Additional Book Review Comments……….
“This book is breath of fresh air. There is hardly any material available on the working of our parliamentary system. Senator Nisar Memon has, therefore, filled a major gap in knowledge by writing this book. It is also inspiring to see the enthusiasm and fervor that is writ large across all the pages of the book.
Senator Nisar has made it lively to walk through the otherwise unknown corridors of the Parliament, sessions of different houses, workings of the committees and the wealth of information accumulated over the years from the working of various dimensions of parliamentary debates, legislations and resolutions. This is an effortlessly readable book interspersed between narration of personal experiences as a parliamentarian and education for the reader with the working of their public representatives. The issues of national security, water management and social services have brought to fore the efforts parliamentarians have made to improve the lives of ordinary people.
Senator Nisar Memon has loved his responsibility and discharged its demands with singular distinction. It is very impressive to see a highly successful professional who worked all his life in one of the best known multinational corporation so seamlessly adopting to a life of a public representative while preserving the values of merit, integrity and devotion to the job.” Dr. Waqar Masood Khan, Former Finance Secretary
“Our foreign policy is one of friendliness and goodwill towards all the nations of the world. We do not cherish aggressive designs against any country or nation…Pakistan will never be found lacking in upholding the principles of the United Nations Charter.” said Jinnah the founder of the country that acquired independence from British Raj. Unfortunately for the country, the leader of this constitutional independence through a democratic legal struggle of millions of Muslims of the subcontinent left this mortal world after providing one year of leadership.
Just at that time, the world witnessed the end of World War II and emergence of ‘cold war’ between two super powers: USA and USSR. The first Prime Minister of Pakistan Liaquat Ali Khan on invitation by US President Truman visited America in May 1950 as against the invitation by Soviet Union. This visit laid the foundation of our foreign policy with a bias to a country with capitalist economy versus the socialist one which was adopted by India after its Prime Minister Nehru visit to USSR in 1955.
Pakistan military received US training, equipment and strategies to fight the communism but in-fact it was to protect US interests in Asia versus India which became a close ally of USSR. Pakistan during its course of friendship with US has suffered tremendous human and material losses at the hands of terrorists – many of them with roots linking them with CIA.
Just after success of communists revolution lead by Mao Zedong, Pakistan established diplomatic relations with People’s Republic of China in 1950 which continued to grow irrespective of changed governments in both countries and today after 68 years relations are known as: ‘friendly and brotherly’, ‘higher than mountains and deeper than the oceans’ and have withstood the tests of time. It is also a matter of record that Pakistan helped establish diplomatic relations between China and USA, with its positive impact on global dialogue and peace.
The declassified documents of the US State Department released from time to time, indicate how US administration has worked against the interests of Pakistan. The first blow was when despite being allies, conspiracy was reportedly hatched to assassinate its first Premier, which destabilised the democracy, just because Pakistan took a principled stand of not participating in Korean War and not using its influence over Iran for the US efforts to secure the transfer of Iranian oil fields. Later, the American U-2 spy aircraft flying out of American base in Badaber Peshawar was downed in USSR airspace with its negative repercussions on Pakistan. It is a historic fact that Pakistan provided total and complete logistics, military intelligence and its territory to end the occupation of USSR from Afghanistan. Last but not the least, Pakistan helping US fight AlQaeda, subsequent to 9/11.
The relations between two countries which were allies in Baghdad Pact, CENTO and SEATO went nose dive after Pakistan successfully tested its indigenous nuclear capability. Pakistan’s conventional weapon system primarily of USA and west origin suffered due to US embargoes forcing Pakistan to look for alternate source of suppliers. This was blessing in disguise. We found dependable China coming forward to help in setting up Heavy Mechanical Complex in Pakistan for tanks and other needs, co-production of JF-17 and P-22 Frigates and above all to help in production of clean nuclear energy to meet Pakistan’s power generation needs for is economic development.
While the earlier US administration realised the importance of relations with Pakistan, the current Trump administration has adapted threatening, aggressive, hostile, coercive and illogical stance to the detriment of mutual relations. This American u-turn of policy is neither supported by saner elements in their country nor independent countries, and in Pakistan it is totally rejected by government, parliament, political parties and all self respecting people of Pakistan. America has isolated itself and even those of us who have had long interaction with US find it difficult to desist from condemning such a policy.
Where are the think tanks? Where are the strategic studies groups? They need to come out in open without regard to funding and support they may have been getting from US government and remind of the historic role Pakistan has played, its geopolitical position and its power to influence events in these fast growing economies. Our institutions must also rise to the occasion by renewed dedication to education and research to develop our human resource to meet any adventurism against our strategic assets. Let history not repeat itself when payments made for F-16 was forfeited without delivering the ordered equipment.
People and government in Pakistan must tighten its belt by reducing dependence on imports specially from unfriendly countries and be self reliant by using Pakistan goods. In current crises which is forced on us, we must forge unity amongst our ranks, adopt simple living (in former Premier Z. A. Bhutto’s words ‘eat grass’) and not succumb to unethical pressures on free people of a sovereign country. We must set example for freedom fighters of Kashmir that no amount of price is high for independence. Jinnah’s liberated country must remain independent.
At the same time, American people of all shades of opinion must rise against their current administration to protect their own interests in this nuclear armed region and force the internal change in the interest of world peace.
— The writer is former federal minister and senator of Pakistan
Pakistan has won with the supremacy of Parliament accepted
Nisar A. Memon
December 19, 2017 will be remembered as a historic day in strengthening of democracy in Pakistan. Its a day when Jinnah’s Pakistan won. It was a win for all. The military leadership came to Parliament to brief and answer the Senate on the general security situation, the recent foreign visits of COAS to Afghanistan and Iran, as well as remove apprehensions of any unconstitutional interference in governance of the country being run under democratic dispensation.
This visit was made possible by the foresight of the Chairman Senate who in consultation with the Leaders of House and Opposition invited the COAS to Senate and acceptance of COAS to personally visit and brief the Senate on the agenda and respond to the queries of Senators. This was also the Senate fulfilling their constitutional responsibility of oversight of executive branch of the government, both civil and military. It was brave and correct position of all concerned that won the day and set yet another positive precedence in relations between state institutions.
We need to be mindful of current vicious environment created in media and social network of distrust between institutions of the state by vested interest lobbies working in cohort with enemies of Pakistan. The appearance in Senate of the army leadership augers well and should put to rest the apprehensions of any unconstitutional attack on the countries fragile democracy.
Our media and professional commentators call it a move forward in civil-military relationship but they were off the mark and missed the point that it was a move forward in recognition of supremacy of parliament by the military executive branch, just like the civil executive has been accepting the parliamentary oversight.
Viewed in the historic context of Senate of Pakistan, one recalls that during 2003-2009 Senate many a firsts were initiated when Ministry of Defence was asked to present “Pakistan’s Defense Policy’ which due to firmness of the then Senate Standing Committee on Defence and Defence Production was present in-camera. In addition the defence budget lines were present for the first time and so was the briefing on our Nuclear by the SPD within the JCSC. When the Senate Standing Committee on Defence and Defence Production was undertaking the first ever foreign visit it was the Chairman JCSC who personally along with his team briefed that Committee on our relations with China and some of the open issues, which Committee helped resolve.
It was investment of the past when egos were set aside and senators visited the Armed Forces Headquarters to get the briefings and responses to their queries. That investment paid off and like the chief ministers came to Parliament House to forge a consensus with Parliamentary Committee on Water Resources during that time, so did the military whenever the time came.
We also recall the joint sessions of two Houses of Parliament during past on National Security and the briefing by ISI DG while COAS sitting in the galleries. Such interaction though in-camera have been instrumental in forming national response to challenges.
Some may argue that it was the need of the hour, when our country is threatened by foreign conspiracies from east and northwest, from internal sabotage, from aggressive and unreasonable policy of USA’s new administration towards Pakistan that made this meeting possible. This is no time to advance such arguments but to recognize the historic initiative and response happened due to maturity and courage of leadership setting example for other state institutions to strengthen the country.
Senate has taken a step forward in the right direction and military leadership has unequivocally demonstrated that it derives its power from the Constitution and Parliament under the democratic dispensation.
It’s a disappointment for enemies of state both within and outside to witness the unity of command of the institutions under parliamentary form of government and to hear loud and clear the commitment of Pakistan’s military to Constitution and law. It should now discourage those forces who time and again seek unconstitutional interventions.
It’s a bright day for the youth of Pakistan who should be assured of continuity of democratic order and assurance of united front for the security of country and safeguard of people by its defenders.
It is time to pay homage to martyrs of Pakistan both civilians and military who laid their lives for safeguarding the democracy and frontiers in its 70 years of history. Its time to rejoice the strengthening of the country with united resolve of military executive branch of government and the parliament.
—Writer in former Chairman of Senate Standing Committee on Defence and Defence Production, Pakistan __________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________
August 1, 2017; Islamabad Nisar A Memon article in daily Pakistan Observer on Water Environment Security.
Water Environment Security
July 25, 2017; Nisar A Memon article published in daily Pakistan Observer on Agriculture main stay of our economy
Agriculture main stay of our economy
July 2017; Karachi: Nisar A Memon speaks to SOUTHASIA monthly magazine on Kalabagh Dam.
SouthAsia July 2017 2pages
December 2016; Karachi: Nisar A Memon writes on Future of Food Security in SOUTHASIA monthly magazine.
Southasia Nisar A Memon Article Dec 2016
November 2016; Karachi: Nisar A Memon interviewed on Kashmir by SOUTHASIA monthly magazine
SouthAsia Nisar A Memon Interview Nov 2016
November 28, 2016; Peshawar: Nisar A Memon at The National Conference on Thinking Climate Chnage Adaptation in Water and Farming with the theme of THINK_ADAPT at Climate Chnage Centre, University of Agriculture, Peshawar.
Addressed on ‘Climate change impact on Water Governance & Security’
November 26, 2016; Islamabad: Nisar A Memon at The International Association of Lions Clubs Islamabad on the occasion of Charter Presentation Ceremony to Leo Club.
November 18, 2016; Faisalabad: Nisar A Memon at International Conference on Sustainable Agriculture in Pakistan jointly organized by U.S. – Pakistan Center for Advanced Studies in Agriculture and Food Security University of Agriculture, Faisalabad Pakistan and University of California, Davis, USA.
Addressed on “Need of LTRES* under Climate Change Scenarios.”
*Long Term Research Experiments
May 12th and 13th, 2016; Delhi: Attended Indo-Pak Track II Dialogue on Building Climate Resilience, Energy-Water Resilience and Disaster Risk Reduction, organized by SDPI Pakistan and Development Alternatives India.
Both India and Pakistan are extremely vulnerable to climate change owing to their geographic location, large populations and low adaptive capacities. As a result of their vulnerability, they are already experiencing the negative impacts of climate change. These impacts are particularly stark in the context of water security, energy security and disasters caused by extreme weather events. As more and more research emerges suggesting that the economic, social and environmental impacts of climate change in these areas could potentially be devastating, India and Pakistan are recognizing the importance of building their resilience to climate change.
Track II dialogue was organised to discuss what measures exist and could be taken by the two countries, both individually and collectively, to build climate change resilience. Based on two days discussions The Delhi Declaration was made.
Senator Nisar A Memon meets Prof Jeffery Sachs and Chancellor & Vice Chancellor TERI University
Senator Nisar A Memon visited Delhi from 5-7 July, 2014 on the invitation of Vice Chancellor TERI University Dr. Leena Srivastava , to join the launch of Sustainable Development Solution Network. – South Asia. At the launch, he met Prof. Jeffery Sachs, Advisor to UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon and Chancellor TERI University Dr. Pachauri who is also the Director General of The Energy and Research Institute (TERI), Delhi. SenatorⓇ Memon was named as member of the Leadership Committee of South Asia SDSN.
Dr. Pachauri later invited him to the MOU signing ceremony between TERI and US Green Buildings Institue., Washington.
During the meetings he introduced WEF Pakistan and discussed avenues of cooperation with them in the area of Water Environment and the partnerships that can be forged with SDSN, SDSN-SA, TERI and TERI University.