according to legislated rules and established SOPs and not the idiosyncratic whims of politicians in power.However, in countries which do not have the good fortune to be ruledaccording to the true wishes of their people or even laws which have been otherwiselegislated the situation becomes very different. It is here that government officials mustmake their own decisions as to who is their employer, the state or the government in power, that is if there is any difference between the two. In many cases, the de facto powers of apparently democratically elected politicians also far exceed what could beconsidered the norms of good governance. Usually the law of survival dictates that thedifference between state and government is put aside for the time being and the personor group in power be accepted as the full and only arbitrator of rightful government.There is yet another situation that of countries where political instability has been the rule. Here dictatorship and democracy have played hide and seek and thelatter has not been able to take root in the national ethos. Here the permanentgovernment employees, especially those in offices which have a significant bearingupon national policy making and its execution on a day to day basis, see themselves asa constant factor that provides continuity from one period to another. However, as can perhaps be expected, the bureaucrats in such political situations go beyond merely providing the much needed continuity in an unstable political environment, and tend todirectly or indirectly provide the missing links in the political leadership. The Pakistanisituation and that of its civil servants resembles this last case most closely. Indeed aswill be borne out later, this situation may be equated to a zero-sum game where a gainof power and prestige by politicians has traditionally meant an equal and opposite loss by bureaucrats and vice versa.Pakistan has been a classic example of Third World political instability andchaos, so much so that leading scholars have chosen to name their books on thecountry as
The Enigma of Political Development
From Crisis to Crisis
(Feldman). Fifty years into its existence the roles of the three groups that have run thecountry - the politicians, soldiers and bureaucrats have yet to be finally decided. Therole of the people of Pakistan in its governing has, unfortunately, been fairly minimal.Even in the limited periods when democracy has existed it has been of varietiesrestricted either by prevalent socio-political conditions that do not provide equality of opportunity for the constituents or by manipulative politics of dictators anddemagogues garbed in the camouflage of electoral popularity. Of recent the judiciaryhas also become fairly involved in national politics, at least in the public perception, if only by way of its interpretation of the Constitution which has at times bounded onlegislativeThe massive illiteracy combined with a non-proportional system of representation has meant that democratic governments do not enjoy a true mandate of the people. A weak party system, has led to floor-crossings being the norm (until the present parliament which is restricted by a anti-defection law) which has in turn led toweak oppositions. Governments have been placed in power with as little as a third of the total popular vote. In other situations “non-party elections” have led to an almostimmediate formation of “the government party” allegedly prompting one provincialChief Minister to claim that he had never been guilty of the rather unbecoming conductof floor-crossing as he had always been in one party i.e. the government party.