A Practical Approach for Asian Tiger by Dr Ramesh Kumar Vankwani

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A Practical Approach for Asian Tiger
by Dr Ramesh Kumar Vankwani

Very few of us have courage to admit that one of the major reasons for which Pakistan was created in 1947 was to ensure economic stability and development. The Indian Muslim minority had fears about the possible exploitation in the hands of majority once the British left India. Quad-e-Azam had vowed on a number of occasions to make Pakistan a welfare and developed role model country where every citizen would have freedom to play due role for the national development. Exact 70 years are being passed since independence but unfortunately, Pakistan is still facing hurdles in its way to progress. On the other hand, various countries who were liberated after our independence have successfully transform themselves in to developed countries. China and Malaysia are two brightest examples that need our attention to be followed.

In our entire national history, every leadership used to publicly announce sacrificing his life on the country. Different political stunts such as “Our life is available for Pakistan… We’ll sacrifice our lives for Pakistan…” are being used to prove the patriotism but I believe, such emotional dialogues are not having any positive impact on the national development. International community is also not taking us seriously as they wonder how strange this country is where the people, instead of some practical struggle, consider sacrificing of their lives as key to progress. Here, I would like to inform that I used to visit different countries on regular basis, which resulted in observing their economic development model as well. I am quite confident to state that their progress is result of commitment of their leadership, national vision and tireless continuous efforts. Similarly, combating anti-state elements and facing natural disasters are also common in all nations. When I compare their development with the claims of ourselves, the question raise in my mind is that “Do these countries demand bloodshed and violence from their citizens for development ?” The answer must be definitely “Never” and that is the reason, I would like to express my views in this article about transforming our beloved country in to the next Asian Tiger.

Life is not a bed of roses and a human life is full of good and bitter experiences but it is very much practical approach to follow footsteps of some successful people as role model. The purpose is simply to learn from their life experiences to achieve success. I think, same principle could also be applied in the matter of nations and countries to follow some successful country’s policies as role model. Every developed country of today was once under-developed and facing challenges. While starting its journey towards progress and development, a economic model of other role model country was followed. I would like to emphasize that the rise of our best friendly country China, which was liberated after two years of our independence as world’s 2nd largest economy, is result of hard work and continuous tireless struggle.

During the early three years, the primary objective of the Chinese government, under the leadership of Chairman Mao Zedong, was simply economy restoration which was badly suffered due to second World War. The decades of deadliest warfare also resulted in one of the most virulent inflations in world history. The Chinese leadership had adopted the economic model of Soviet Union in the first five-year plan, 1953–57. The USSR was the super power of that time. The Chinese government defined long-range national goals including transformation of China into a modern, powerful, and socialist nation. The aim of Soviet economic model based five year plan was to achieve high rate of economic growth and socialization with a focus on state ownership, large collective units in agriculture, and centralized economic planning. Focusing on industrialization, improvement of living standards, providing employments, and defense production were some of the objectives.

Here, I would like to express that timely reviewing a policy is also essential in the national development planning and in this regard, Chinese government had to review the industry-based Soviet model once they convinced that required results could not be delivered. A socio-economic policy – The Great Leap Forward – was initiated by the Chinese Government from 1958 to 1960 with a purpose to transform the country through rapid industrialization and collectivization. However, this policy was also proven failed which caused the Great Chinese Famine in which as many as 15 million people lost their lives. Learning lessons from the critical situation, Chinese government further announced that “Agriculture First” Policy in 1961 to revive the economic planning. Agriculture, light industry and heavy industry became first, second and third priorities respectively. During this era, China had also to fight the Sino-Indian War in 1962 on the issue of Tibet. Despite China was capturing large area, Chinese Government declared a ceasefire to withdrawal its troops from the disputed area.

The struggle by the Chinese Government to achieve success is not ended here as the Cultural Revolution, another sociopolitical movement that took place in China from 1966 until 1976, was initiated. Although, the movement aimed to preserve the country’s true ideological identity but it also caused negative impacts on the society in term of economically and socially. Latter, it was officially admitted that the Cultural Revolution was “responsible for the most severe setback and the heaviest losses suffered by the Party, the country, and the people since the founding of the People’s Republic.”

After the death of Mao Zedong, another revolutionary and paramount leader Deng Xiaoping came in to power and led the country through far-reaching market-economy reforms. He is truly considered as leading visionary icon behind modern economic reforms and an opening to the global economy. A number of socio-economic reforms were carried out during his era to make China an active part of international community. Promotion of modern research and quality education were become top priority areas. Different steps for foreign trade were also taken, and exchanges of students and professionals with foreign world were initiated. Modern machinery and technology essential for national development were also imported. Great Tangshan earthquake was also occurred in1976 which is believed to be the largest earthquake of the 20th century by death toll. The Chinese nation faced this natural disaster bravely in which the number of deaths initially reported was 655,000.

Today, no one could deny the fact that China is becoming a global super power and a role model country under the dynamic leadership of President Xi Jinping. Many experts see the rising China is ready to catch up to or even surpass the United States in the near future. As long as the leadership is committed and people have trust on the leadership, countries can succeed despite having all unwanted results and disasters. Chinese government’s non-involvement in international conflicts also reflects its commitment to ensure world peace. Despite military advancements, Chinese government decided for ceasefire in 1962 keeping the welfare of Chinese citizens entirely in view. China waited for proper time so that Hong Kong and Macau could be returned peacefully without usage of any force. China used to keep trade relations with all nations of the world, including rivals India, Taiwan and Japan. China declares Taiwan rebel province but never cut off relations. Special permits are being issued to the people residing in Taiwan for trade and visit. The positive role of China could also be witnessed in the United Nations General Assembly on the issue of Syria.

Progress of any country, in my views, is result of political commitment of the leadership, national vision and tireless continuous efforts by the nation. Similarly, combating anti-state elements and facing natural disasters are also common in the struggle of every nation. The purpose to highlight all the hardship of China is to urge that crisis are part of life and brave nations make policies to tackle crisis. Instead of just statements, our leadership belonging to political and armed forces must come in to one page for making solid policies to materialize our dream of becoming an “Asian Tiger”, and there should also be review to examine the progress status. We must understand that time is still in our hands and hatred-based non-realistic approach will lead us nowhere. Following the success story of China, we must cooperate with each other to design and implement national policies regardless of our political affiliations. An economically stable and strong Pakistan is in best interest of entire region.

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