Asad Umar of PTI and Sher Shah Suri’s road

An old clip of Asad Umar (now Finance Minister of Pakistan) in which he is dismissing Sher Shah Sur’s GT road as trivial, a pastime of kings, that it was a showy spectacle like Taj Mahal. His political opponent Nihal Hashmi of declared Nawaz Shareef as Sher Shah Sur II for building motorway, Asad Umar is responding to that.

Asad Omar is comparing apples with oranges (roads with universities). I am not an expert in economics, but historians inform us that the vast network of roads built by Sher Shah and the security provided along the roads, increased trade and commerce. The roads were provided with serais or rest-houses. Market towns developed near these sarais and gave impetus to trade.To encourage foreign trade, Sher Shah reduced custom duties and taxes were collected only at the point of entry and the point of sale, and abolishing all irregular levies.To promote commerce, Sher Shah also reformed the currency. This was accomplished in less than five years while there were other tasks at hands. Moreover, Sher Shah did have fondness for education. He did build madrassas/colleges. Ruins of a madrassa founded by him were discovered at Narnaul and the inscription at the site reveals that it was built by him in 1520 AD when he was not even a king, just young Farid Khan at that time.


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