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As Pakistan’s economy crashes, read about the time Pakistan vowed to eat grass if needed to get nuclear bombs

Former Pakistani president and prime minister Zulfikar Ali Bhutto had said that Pakistan will get nuclear bombs, even if it meant eating grass

In the early 1970s, former Pakistani President and former Prime Minister Zulfikar Ali Bhutto vowed to develop the atomic bomb to fight India after its humiliating loss in two major wars (one in 1965 and one in 1971).

“Pakistan will fight, fight for a thousand years. If India builds the (atom) bomb.. (Pakistan) will eat grass, even go hungry, but we will get one of our own (atom bomb). We (Pakistan) have no other Choice!” he had infamously said.

He repeated the same lines on learning about the success of ‘Operation Smiling Buddha’, India’s successful testing of the nuclear bomb in Pokhran, Rajasthan. His firm resolve indeed paved the way for Pakistan’s nuclear proliferation programme.

Before the ‘ambitious’ Pakistani politician could see the end of the decade, he was executed by his own military general Muhammad Zia-ul-Haq. And thus followed a harrowing tale of Islamism, foreign debt and the Pakistani military drying out the coffers of the State.

The ‘Land of the Pure’, as envisaged by its founder Muhammad Ali Jinnah, has nuclear bombs today but not enough resources to feed its impoverished citizens. Such has been the prophecy of Zulfikar Ali Bhutto 5 decades earlier.

Pakistan is experiencing its worst economic crisis amidst food shortages, flash floods, and poverty. As the government of Pakistan failed to end the economic crisis in Pakistan, over 7 million workers in its textile industry have been laid off.

Deteriorating economic condition of Pakistan

Other than this, Pakistan, which was declared South Asia’s weakest economy by a report is also hit by a severe food crisis. The situation in several cities of Pakistan is so grave that flour is being rationed and guarded by armed guards. Prices of flour and wheat have witnessed a dramatic surge. 

Pakistan’s Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, Sindh, and Balochistan are among the worst sufferers as tens of thousands spend hours daily to get the subsidized bags of flour that are already short in supply in the market.

Incidents of clashes and stampedes have been reported in markets in many areas of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, Sindh, and Balochistan. The situation is so dire that flour-loaded mini trucks and vans are escorted by armed guards to avoid clashes. As these vehicles reach the markets, people gather around these vehicles. 

Recently, the people of Pakistan took to Twitter to voice their woes as a nationwide power outage left almost all regions without electricity on January 24, 2023.

No way out other than Allah’s grace

A cash-strapped and desperate Pakistan in a bid to revive the long-awaited International Monetary Fund (IMF) bailout programme has agreed to accept all the conditions laid down by the IMF.

Islamabad has also requested the IMF to send its mission to conclude the USD 6 Billion bailout programme which was initially agreed upon in 2019. It is, however, highly unlikely that the IMF would release the funds, at least not till the Pakistani government fulfils its pledges.

As such, the government has now surrendered itself to Almighty Allah. Pakistani Finance minister Muhammad Ishaq Dar said that the government was praying, that Allah would bring prosperity back to Pakistan.

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Dibakar Dutta
Dibakar Dutta
Centre-Right. Political analyst. Assistant Editor @Opindia. Reach me at [email protected]

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