Pakistan Peoples Party contender for Sindh’s chief minister, Syed Murad Ali Shah, was elected to the post yesterday. Shah replaced another Shah, the 87 year old Syed Qaim Ali Shah. Time will tell whether the younger Shah proves to be merely a change of face or bring some visible change in the province and more importantly Karachi.
Many still view Qaim’s sacking as a case of making the loyal-Shah a scapegoat so that attention is diverted from Sindh government’s atrocious governance or the lack of it in Sindh. The party has been ruling Sindh since 2008 but has failed to deliver anything of note. The party is also seen by many as a major hurdle in extending Rangers’ powers in the province. Many believe that the party fears that if Rangers’ are given a free hand many party leaders may face charges of one nature or the other. The party’s tussle with Ranger’s began due to the very reason; when Asif Ali Zardari’s close aide Dr Asim Hussain was picked up by the paramilitary force (Dr Asim remains in custody to date).
Establishing peace in Karachi is a monumental task but there are plenty of other equally challenging tasks for the party in Karachi and the rest of the province. Hundreds of infants have died in Thar due to starvation and disease, health and education facilities are non existent in rural Sindh, the provision of clean water has become a dream for many in the province and most of all it is the what appears to be an impossible task of putting a full stop to the corrupt practices prevalent in the province.
The task ahead of the new CM is monumental indeed.