Political instability of the state and its causes remains the topic of heated debates amongst analysts, scholars, journalists and even the general public. Various problems and their possible solutions are suggested on daily basis on electronic and print media. Hence, there is a plethora of problematic issues and prescribed solutions but the problems never seem to be solved. Admittedly, there are various matters plaguing the political stability, but the one that deserves more attention than it is usually given is lack of awareness amongst the public of the state.
In a democratic state, the stability of the state and the level of public awareness are inextricably interrelated. In a system where the individuals have the right to choose the decision makers, an effective government can never emerge until the individuals making the choice themselves become knowledgeable. The people who assume the high offices and, therefore, undertake the responsibility for resolving the problems often appear to be incompetent. But how do these incompetent people manage to get hold of these offices? Obviously, they are chosen by the people. They succeed in coaxing the people not because of their ingenious tricks, rather, because of the lack of awareness in the public.The political stability is not only dependent upon the ruling party; in fact, the opposition also plays a vital role in it. The opposing parties in the parliament have to act responsibly in order to keep the system stable. But unfortunately, the opposition also seems to act selfishly when it comes to choosing between their interest and higher interest of the state. An instance of this self-centered attitude can be the recent sit-in that was staged by an opposing party. During a time when India was strengthening its illicit hold on Kashmir, which is an integral part of Pakistan, by revoking Article 370 and depriving Kashmiris of even the tiniest bit of autonomy, staging a sit-in in the national capital was not in the favor of the state’s interest. But the real tragedy is that most of the common participants were actually unaware of the purpose of the sit-in; when they were asked about the motive of their protest, they had no clear and precise answer for that.
So, whether it is the government or the opposition or any other institution, problems pertaining to each of them can be traced back to the lack of awareness in the public.Thus, there is a dire need to spread awareness in the public in order to cope with the problems at the grassroots level. But it is important to understand that awareness should not be assimilated with formal education. Awareness is not merely restricted to educational institutions; in fact, it is attained through a developmental process which fundamentally involves the eradication of parochialism and fostering interest in learning.
Existence of good society is only possible in the presence of a good leader ship, which is impossible without an aware voter. So, it is the duty of the society to establish think tanks and R&Ds focusing on public awareness in order to make the common people aware of the value and the purpose of vote. Pakistan desperately needs to develop a culture where the society would actively participate and take interest in these kind of research activities.