Many comments have been made by people in Pakistan and elsewhere about late General and President Musharraf, some praising him, and others criticising him.
However, what surprised me was that even those who criticised him only wrote or spoke about his autocratic behaviour and his violation of the Constitution, but none mentioned his corruption.
I submit that not only was Musharraf personally corrupt, he also injected corruption into the Pakistan’s military and bureaucracy ( by alloting them plots of land and giving them various other benefits ).
It is reported that Musharraf built nearly 30 properties, including fancy farmhouses, luxury apartments in the Middle East and London, and houses in Karachi and other Pakistani cities.
Musharraf admitted to the journalist Nadeem Malik of Samaa TV that he owns a lavish flat in London worth several million dollars, and another in Dubai.
In his interview to Nadeem Malik he claimed that the money for these flats was given to him by King Abdullah of Saudi Arabia after he remitted office, but that claim, as well as his claim that it was given to him as he was close to King Abdullah, has to be taken with a pinch of salt.
Could he have amassed so much wealth on his army pay ? Obviously not.
It is claimed by some that Musharraf built up Pakistan’s economy, but the truth is that his regime devastated it so deeply that it may never recover.
So it is evident that Musharraf was not only a despot, but also corrupt.
Why is it then that the Pakistan media and other Pakistanis have remained silent on this aspect about Musharraf ? One can only speculate, but it seems to me that the reason is that they are afraid of Pakistan’s army. Talking of Musharraf’s personal corruption would inevitably lead to corruption in Pakistan’s military in general, and that is scary for most Pakistanis, as it may have very unpleasant consequences. Only a person like Ayesha Siddiqa, who wrote ‘Military Inc’, living far away in London, or a person like me living in India, could venture to do that.