News Watch, Side Feature, South Asia

Constitution is My Freedom

A constitution, as we all know, is a basic legal framework for the state to function. It sets the principles of the authority and its distribution in the state, which is required to govern the society. It also defines the fundamental thought which forms the basis of the state. It outlines the basic rights and needs of the individuals and society. It sets forth a process for making laws to fulfil those rights and needs for every citizen. It determines accountability mechanisms to ensure the same.

So, a constitution is a set of rules, not freedom from them. It sets the boundaries, not freedom. It sets the boundaries in which the state organs and society shall operate. I wonder how one can be actually free, while within boundaries. Let us then not close our eyes towards the fallacy of this idea of freedom. It practically cannot exist in a society governed by a constitution and its laws.

Inevitably, if man is not free in a governed society, how does man go about setting forth the constitution and laws, the boundaries of a state and society, and more importantly? Who should set these boundaries? The people? Do they have sufficient intellectual capability to define what is suitable for the unseen and unknown future? Let me rephrase, how many people here can hit a target they have never known or seen? You can take a second chance, and even a third one, but definitely you will miss.

As they say, to err is human, but it comes with a cost. An error in the constitution is an injustice to the people, an oppression on the society. An error is bound to result from any constitution made by the limited human mind. So, what do we do? Do we make another error to fix a previous one? And yet another, and another? We can keep on going but that does not solve the problem for us.

So where does it take us? Do we have a constitution made out of error-free infinite wisdom? Well, we have been fortunate there as we have been blessed by Divine guidance regarding that. Pakistan was founded on the slogan of “Pakistan ka matlab kya, La ilaha illallah” (What is the meaning of Pakistan? There is no god but Allah (swt)). It means that this country was founded so that Islam could become the constitution of this “land of the pure.” Its people have long cherished for the day when their constitution will be defined by the Noble Quran and the Prophetic Sunnah, a constitution based on an infinite wisdom of the All-Knowing Creator, Allah (swt). Only then will this slogan truly materialize in the lives of its people, making the dream of our forefathers a reality.

Abdul Mun’im – Wilayah Pakistan