By Dr.Shahid Qureshi
About a decade ago I called Lord Nazir Ahmed and requested for an interview. We agreed a time and there he was on time waiting for me in the Houses of Parliament. Since then we have developed this relationship of mutual respect. He is sharp, articulate, concise, and solution focused. After the brief interview he invited me for a coffee and received his bill in envelop which might be more expansive then the original bill? The whole place is quite intimidating for many people unless you know your own history.
Lord Ahmed is a permanent bridge between Pakistan and Britain irrelevant of who is ruling in Pakistan and living in exile in London before of after ruling. The amount of support and respect he gets from people is extraordinary. But don’t want him to burn out too with the amount of community programs he arranges? I recently presented him my book ‘War on Terror and Siege of Pakistan,’ before a dinner he gave to the journalists in an exclusive central London restaurant ‘Kitchen’.
He was jailed and freed for the offence which according to, “The lady Justice Hallett in her judgement at the Court of Appeal said Lord Nazir Ahmed was neither legally or morally responsible for the death of Slovakian Martyn Gombar. The Court acknowledged the remarkable support that you had from various agencies and people of all walks of life. The Lady Justice Hallett said I have assessed the letters of reference in being in excess of 6,000”. He has now fully qualified to be a politician in Pakistan as he is been to the prison? Coming proudly from a humble background, studied in a school in Mirpur, Free Kashmir, Lord Ahmed is outspoken on the issues which rock many boats and rattle cages from war in Iraq , Afghanistan , occupation of Palestine and Kashmir . He is on the wrong side of the rulers but mostly on the right side of the people. That is what matter. Some part of the British media love to scold him. He said, ‘he was tried at least four times. Explaining Lord Ahmed said, “On the day of accident, some of the headlines actually said six killed Lord car crash or 12 whatever. Because what they did, they counted all the accidents of December 25th and put it together with it. And the second time when the file actually being considered I did not hear from my solicitors or the police that my file was going to CPS, it was the journalist who called me and said that your file is being sent to DPP, ‘what do you have to say to that. You are involved in a death crash.’ And when I was charged or CPS decided to charge me; normally the police will invite you and normally they will say to you that you are being charged, you have anything to say. On my occasion, I was informed by a TIMES newspaper reporter who called me and said you are being charged for dangerous driving and he did not say death driving but he linked it the death that was caused; ‘what you have to say to that’. I said ‘I don’t know about it.’”
He said, ‘the police officer who interviewed him said: ‘there was no case to answer.’ “The Magistrate that has dealt with it and the three Courts – the District Judge, the High Court Judge and the Court of Appeal – all the judges said that I do not have the legal or moral responsibility for the death or for the accident. Because Mr. Martyn Gombar was drunk; he had a faulty car tires and he had an accident long before I arrived there and two other cars are gone in. This is something that the media chose not to write,” Lord Ahmed explained.
Though the recent corruption expanses scandal of some British parliamentarians is an attempt to intimidate the whole ‘Parliament’ by the bankers who siphoned billions and ‘bailed out’ by the very government who should have put them on trial? Some one said, ‘these MPs and members of the House of Lords are petty thieves compare to what bankers did to Britain ’?Though Lord Ahmed believes in multiculturalism and inter-faith but some asked, ‘would he be tried in the media and send to prison in the same manner if he was a survivor of the Holocaust’?One of his admirers says Lord Ahmed, ‘always baffle people with brilliance’. Keep doing the good work, My Lord.
(Dr Shahid Qureshi is award wining journalist and writer on foreign policy & security based in London)