By Saeed Qureshi
Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) is plummeting its political ladder sooner than later. it is fast losing its luster. instead of unfurling revolutionary and ground breaking agenda it is focused upon non-issues or the narrow objective such as targeting Nawaz Sharif and his family.
It is puzzling that despite its furor and high pitched aggressive political thrust, PTI lost elections in Kashmir and local bodies in Punjab. Presently in the Senate PTI has 7 seats out of 104, in the National Assembly 33 out of 342, in KP 60 out of 124, in Sindh 4 out of 168, in Baluchistan zero out of 65 and in Azad Kashmir 1 out of 41.
These statistics are disappointing and PTI direly needs to win the required number of seats to assail into power echelons. There are no direct or unconstitutional shortcuts to the power corridors. Instead of dislodging the PMLN government, Imran Khan ought to enhance PTI’s strength in Senate. Assembly and provinces. For that objectives elections are the only legitimate route.
The latest episode of Hamid Khan and his ouster as a PTI lawyer in “Panama Papers Leaks” is a knee-jerk reaction from Imran Khan or the PTI’s top notches. Hamid Khan was removed to represent PTI in the Apex Court after the court observed that the 680-page evidence submitted by PTI had almost nothing to do with the Sharif family's London properties.
With such mercurial decision of sacking a prominent lawyer without talking to him looks illogical. Responding to that Hamid Khan hinted at the internal rifts within PTI by observing that “There are many groups within PTI that are trying to influence the party policies’.
Many loyal and steadfast members who were with Imran Khan are presently disenchanted and quite a few of them have either left the party or distanced themselves from Imran Khan. They later complained that Imran Khan’s attitude in the party’s meetings is authoritarian and occasionally humiliating. Intellectuals within PTI, like Abdul Quayyum Khan Kundi are being treated as outcasts.
The main drawback in the political style of Imran Khan is that instead of unfolding his lofty roadmap for the uplift of Pakistan, he is entirely riveted on removing the PMLN government by hook or by crook. At the same time, he is bent upon proving Nawaz Sharif and his family members as incompetent and corrupt. Imran would prefer martial law than see a political dispensation headed by Nawaz Sharif or PMNL. Mercifully COAS General Raheel Sharif kept army away from power corridors.
The ongoing tussle of Imran Khan with the PMLN government is nothing short of a reckless effort and reflective of a wild goose chase. It is merely wastage of time and would dissipate his energies on a counterproductive goal. The day when the apex court might hand out a verdict on Panama Leaks and declare Sharif family as delinquent is not coming so soon. Te appeal thereafter might take more time. The court proceedings go on for years.
The second biggest flaw or lacuna in his political campaigning is that it is not being run in a peaceful manner. His sit-ins and barricading federal capitol Islamabad was uncalled for. He is still carrying on long marches and processions. In the beginning, he has been drawing large crowds and his popularity rating was high.
The PTI’s mostly young charged workers were seen barging into the government offices and TV station. For days, together Imran and his political cohorts delivered inflammatory speeches. The crowds would raise filthy slogans and hurl wild allegations solely on Nawaz Sharif family.
All this rowdy spectacle looked as a kind of studied vendetta directed at PMLN government and Sharif clan. This behavior based on personal vendettas and not on unfolding his vision for the uplift of Pakistan didn’t pay off. But meaningless agitational politics cannot carried on for long.
Instead of displaying anarchy and muscle-flexing from containers and in open public meetings, Imran Khan should pursue his political bandwagon through peaceful persuasion and logical discourses in his public speeches and through media outlets.
Now if Imran Khan doesn’t attend the National Assembly session addressed by Turkish prime minister because of his hostility towards Nawaz Sharif then such an attitude is not only politically bizarre but childish also. What perception the Turkish prime minister would have carried with him that a certain politician doesn’t want to welcome a friendly guest because of his enmity with his own prime minister. Should we call it political immaturity or idiocy?
It would be advisable and instructive for Imran Khan not to waste his time and energies on court proceeding with regard to Panama Papers Leaks relating to the names of Sharif family having offshore accounts in London. instead he should prepare, with full force, for the 2018 general elections. That would be the most preferable and legitimate route to come into power and serve the people and country the way he would like to.
He would then be in a most reassuring position to weed out corruption and take corrupt people to task the, including Nawaz Sharif and his family. In the meantime, let the court take suo moto notice on Panama Papers and he may see the outcome from the sidelines. Until 2018 elections, he has plenty of time to prepare and remobilize his party cadres and the people to win.
Unfortunately, he is in league with certain politicians whose don’t have a good reputation. As the adage goes “a man is known by the company he keeps”. Those individuals who have joined Imran Khan are not pulsating with national interest but to settle their scores with Nawaz Sharif for personal reasons. It would be better if Imran Khan takes a solo flight and thus he may recover some of his lost ground.