Fatima Bhutto slams dynastic rule in South Asia

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Jaipur, Jan 24 (UNI) Fatima Bhutto, niece of late former Pakistan Prime Minister Benazir Bhutto, today slammed the dynastic 'political inbreeding' in South Asia, indirectly referring to the anointment of her cousin Bilawal to inherit the Bhutto legacy in Pakistan.

While consistent in her opposition to her aunt, Fatima said, she had no regret about what she wrote about her aunt and would have been more criticial if she had been alive.

Fatima, an accomplished writer in Pakistan, who was here to participate in the Jaipur Literature Festival, said, ''I am not repentant about what I said about my aunt even after her life was cut short by a tragic assassination.'' She said about 20 families in South Asia overshadowed the political space in these countries and at the moment she was happy being a writer, adding that she would think of joining politics when this dynastic system gave way to a more mature democracy in Pakistan.

''As a writer, you have a lot of freedom to write what you feel strongly about, while in politics, you have several constraints,'' she said, citing another reason while denouncing politics. When asked about the freedom for the writers and intellectuals in Pakistan under military dictatorship, she responded by saying, ''there is tremendous amount of freedom in Pakistan for the writers.'' When asked about how to charter Pakistan on the path to democracy, she said, ''the road to any kind of salvation lies in the grassroot and the people. There is no short cut and the people are the real agents of change.'' UNI PJJ SHB MSJ KP1712

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