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Justice is not only carried out in courts: Fatima Bhutto

Press Trust of India  |  New Delhi 

It's been almost 14 years since her father was assassinated but Pakistan's slain former Prime Minister Benazir Bhutto's niece Fatima Bhutto has not given up hope for justice which she feels is not just carried out in courts.

"I think there is a hope for justice. Justice is not only carried out in courts. Young Pakistanis, who have seen the violence in Pakistan, will stand up to the justice one day," said Bhutto, who's father Murtaza was killed on September 20, 1996, when Fatima was 14, in a gunbattle with police near his Karachi residence.

Pakistan President Asif Ali Zardari was accused of plotting Murtaza's murder but had been acquitted of the charge.

Participating in a panel discussion 'Altered Histories: the Legacy of Political Assassinations in South Asia yesterday, she said the leaders from political dynasties had been assassinated in South Asia for political gains and Pakistan remains the most suffered nation.

"If we look at the assassinations in South Asia, it can be easily found that the leaders who became too dangerous for the establishment, had been killed. Benazir, who came to Pakistan in 2007 on a sympathy wave became inconvenient to some sections in the power," said Bhutto.

She was in the capital for the promotion of her latest book ' Songs of Blood and Sword' based on the four generations of the Bhutto family.

When asked about the possibilities of her joining politics, she said: "I don't think politics is the best way to bring change. Academia and the media are phenomenal ways of change. That's the way I have chosen."

Other panelists in the discussion included political psychologist Ashis Nandy, Hindustan Times editorial director Vir Sanghvi and Congress leader Mani Shankar Aiyar.

"Lessons to be learnt from South Asia assassinations is that how little the have altered history. If we see at all the killings in India, Sri Lanka, Bangladesh and Pakistan, assassinations are proved to be a useless exercise that ends life of an individual but not a nation," Aiyar said.

Talking about the psychological angle behind the reasons of assassinations, Nandy pointed out that the killing happens either on the basis of calculation of gains or losses or if there is a 'change of bonding' between the assassin and the assassinated.

"Nathu Ram Godse, who killed Mahatma Gandhi, had participated in the non-cooperation movement. He thought Gandhi was a liability to the new infant state," said Nandy.

First Published: Mon, April 05 2010. 12:28 IST