Azadi March – One could only pray for lesser loss
Azadi March – One could only pray for lesser loss
The rejection of the 2013 General Elections audit offer by a three-member commission comprising sitting judges of Supreme Court of Pakistan and demanding resignation of Prime Minister Mohammad Nawaz Sharif ahead of any such audit Pakistan Tehreek-I-Insaf Chairman Imran Khan has virtually closed all doors of dialogue and opted the path of confrontation, which would surely land the country into chaos and destruction, and one could only pray for lesser loss to the people and democracy.
Contrary to the soft-worded address of Prime Minister Mohammad Nawaz Sharif, who talked sense and besides announcing the comprehensive examination of alleged rigging charges in 2013 General Elections and inviting all the political stakeholders to resolve issues through dialogue, PTI Chairman Imran Khan was harsh and emotional in his tone and failed to give reasons for his ever-changing demands which had started with scrutiny of four constituencies and ended up with the complete audit of the general elections 2013 and now the resignation of Prime Minister and removal of whole Election Commission.
Political analysts termed it the second big blunder of Imran Khan by outright rejecting the audit of the elections announced by Premier Shairf and invitation of dialogue to address rest of his concerns regarding revamping of the electoral system in the country to make future elections free, fair and transparent in nature.
In his press conference at Banni Gala residence on Monday (August11) before leaving for Lahore to lead his ‘Azadi March’ on August 14, public at large and his supporters expected Khan to dissociate himself from Pakistan Awami Tehreek Inqalab March but instead he embraced Allama Tahirul Qadri with no political standing and agenda.
Political analysts said that the merger of Azadi and Inqalab marches had virtually torpedoed the political agenda of Imran Khan who wanted to bring reformation in the full of flaws electoral system prevalent in the country, because Allama Tahirul Qadri was against the incumbent political dispensation and wanted to wrap up the system.
This dichotomy on part of Imran Khan had discredited Pakistan Tehreek-I-Insaf in the eyes of a large segment of society who judge the things on basis of rationality.
Some of the senior political leaders belonging to mainstream political parties including ruling Pakistan Muslim League (Nawaz) were worried about this merger of marches and feared that joining of PAT activists in Azadi March of Imran Khan could turn it violent and now the chances of the PTI protest to remain peaceful are thin.
The people who are standing with Imran Khan and supporting his stance for making the electoral system free of anomalies and loopholes have distanced themselves from him after his embrace with Allama Tahirul Qadri who wanted to bring revolution by warping up the incumbent political dispensation.
On the other hand the flexibility shown by Prime Minister Mohammad Nawaz Sharif toward the negotiated settlement of the issue and his acceptance of the Imran Khan’s major demand of audit of 2013 general elections by announcing a commission comprising apex court judges has put Imran Khan in a tight corner and eventually his smart move seemed to bear fruits as he has given a clear message to the public at large that for the sake of democracy and continuity of the system he could lean to any level.
This move on part of Premier Shairf, political analysts consider, would distance the neutral populace from PTI protest plan, who earlier has soft corner for Imran Khan, hence breaking the momentum of his march.
In a late night development after his refusal of acceptance of fresh offer of Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif the central leader of Pakistan Tehreek-I-Insaf Makhdoom Javid Hashmi has dissociated himself from the Azadi March and left for his hometown Multan.
It is a big blow to Imran Khan and in coming days more leaders of Tehreek-I-Insaf would be leaving the party for what many considered the undemocratic handling of the things by the party top hierarchy.
It is high time for the political leaders belonging to various political parties to play their role in defusing the tension and on top of it PTI Chairman should refrain from ditching the system and he should accept the offer of audit of 2013 elections by the commission and let the system roll on, because the derailment of the system as a result of the clash between the political forces which seemed imminent in case PTI would carry on with his planned march, would pave the way for establishment to step in and take hold on the reins of government.
So the stigma of derailment of democratic order would stay with Paksitan Tehreek-I-Insaf for times to come, which would neither be good for the emerging political force as well as democratic order in the country.
By: Syed Abid Gillani