Election Commission is the referee of the election game to be held in December this year or January next year. They are accused of being biased towards a particular party. Everyone knows that the referee’s hands and feet are tied. They are appointed at the choice of a particular club. When the club blows its whistle the referee’s whistle blows. That is why the issue of club-neutral referees has arisen.
In the meantime the election battle bell has rung. Irrespective of the party, they are determined to get the trophy. His wealth, money, honor, prestige, life and death, everything is tied to this trophy. They have to win it. And now the propaganda about the game has started. The competing clubs have laid down their cards. It is all about how they will develop their attack, how they will control the pitch and defend the goal post. One club does not know the strategy of the other. They work on assumptions, throwing stones in the dark.
Long ago the Aga Khan Gold Cup was played in Dhaka. It was the biggest inter-club tournament in Pakistan. Top players from across the province of Pakistan would come to Dhaka and rule the field. At that time an Indonesian club used to attend regularly. If a club wins the cup three times in a row, that is, becomes the champion, it will get the Gold Cup. Indonesian club became champion twice in a row. In the final they faced the club from Dhaka. This is from 1970. I don’t remember exactly which club it was, probably Mohammedan Sporting Club or EPIDC.
After half time, there is an uproar in the field. For breaking the rules, a player of one of the teams is given a free-kick or shown a red card. And that was it. There was an uproar. All the onlookers in the gallery were already furious. Ruckus, fights, skirmishes and much more happened. Even the EPR Mounted Police could not control the frenzied mob. Four died, hundreds were injured. The game was interrupted. Club supporters fought, broke their arms and legs, and even died. But the players remained completely safe.
We, the public, are spectators in the gallery at a game to be held in December or January. We want to see a good game full of close competition. But none of us is fair about clubs. We want the club of our choice to win. It doesn’t matter how they win. If the game is interrupted, war will break out. Hands and legs will be broken, lives will be lost, shops and houses will be burnt. The clubs don’t care who dies. It’s all about power. To withdraw from the power struggle means suicide, it means bidding farewell to heaven.