By Obaid ur Rehman.
It can be seen clearly that political tides in Pakistan are yet again gaining momentum which will be seen probably after the Holy month of Ramzan when the term Protesting Politics would again make its feet on the ground. Panama Papers’ scandal has shook the world of politics, but I must say that its Pakistan where the hype is still there and Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif is having tough opposition and time with respect to his political survival and also in terms of his probable bad health due to which he is currently in England for amazing treatment and missing being in Pakistan quite badly.
It was pretty much obvious that the TORs committee consisting of members from government and opposition won’t reach to a specific point and the deadlock would remain there. It was Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif who presented himself for accountability but the deadlock between government and opposition is on the same point and government is not at all ready to include Nawaz Sharif’s name for accountability. Government justifies it in a way that PM’s name is not in Panama leaks but his children’s name is in Panama Papers, therefore there is no need to start the accountability process from PM Nawaz Sharif. Whereas, opposition believes that if there are names of Nawaz Sharif’s children in the list then yet Nawaz Sharif cannot be sidelined as Hassan Nawaz, Hussain Nawaz and Maryam Nawaz were too young at that time when the family got big assets on their name during the several tenures of Nawaz Shareef.
The conflicting statements of all Shareef family members on various media platforms about the sharp details of their business make opposition to stand on their agenda. PTI, PPP, JI and other parties say that under the light of these conflicting statements of father, sons, daughter and uncle, it is completely justified to hold Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif accountable and to start the accountability process from him.
Several table talks between government and opposition members in TORs committee were being carried out but so far, the things are not looking good. PPP and PMLN can be termed as silent friends who help each other in the time of need. Apparently, PPP gave extremely tough time to government and led the opposition quite gently particularly in the initial phase of the whole scenario. But government looks successful in playing its cards and now this option is under consideration that voting process should be carried out from both the government and opposition members of TORs committee, either to agree or not on some specific points to resolve this matter and finally to form Judicial Commission for detailed investigation of inquiry of Panama Papers’ revelations.
We know that Pakistan People’s Party (PPP) and Pakistan Muslim League – Nawaz (PMLN) have always stood with each other in thick and thin. The current decision of voting on specific points would definitely leave Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) alone in this regard. It is so because PMLN has almost got successful in convincing the opposition parties in government’s own favours. It would be Imran Khan’s men who won’t ever prefer to compromise on excluding Nawaz Sharif’s name from accountability list. It won’t make any difference then if PTI does not vote because the majority of opposition members would be voting for government’s favours, which will again leave PTI all they away alone in the contest.
As far as TORs committee is concerned, it was clear to some extent that the solid conclusion won’t be carried out and that issues will also be extended in some other ways. Under these consequences, PTI is left only with one option, and that is to go on streets, roads and start public campaigns on huge scale. Imran Khan on various occasions has given the clue that PTI would protest and march towards Raiwind if proper commission is not finalized for the investigations of Panama Papers’ revelations with the suggested TORs. As per current scenarios, it can be seen that after Eid, PTI would be on roads again as the other opposition parties are apparently not looking stronger against the corruption and related mega scandals. PMLN is trying to gain the sympathy votes and trying its level best to control the other opposition parties as well.
You may disagree with Imran Khan for his political moves and decisions, but one cannot deny the fact that it is only PTI who always takes strong and bold stances whenever country goes through the corruption cases, injustice and poor management and governance. It is probably Khan’s that habit which makes him politically alone in our political system. Right now, Imran Khan, along with his probable allies, is preparing for carrying out a huge march and protest after Ramzan towards Nawaz Sharif’s place in Raiwind.
On the other end, Pakistan Awami Tehreek (PAT)’s founder Allama Dr. Tahir-ul-Qadri has also made his way to Pakistan once again to record protest against the genocide that took place on 17th Jun 2014 when 14 of his men and women were brutally killed by Punjab Police right in front of Minhaj-ul-Quran. He is also planning to protest and march after the Holy month of Ramzan against Federal and Punjab Governments for injustice which they have done with people of Minhaj-ul-Quran. It seems that political brothers, Imran Khan and Dr. Tahir-ul-Qadri are about to shake hands once again to give tough time to ruling party PMLN.
Both of the leaders have solid objectives and reasons to do so, but the question is either this time will they succeed or not. PMLN government is far too intelligent to deal the road-politics gently, because of the fact that PMLN leaders have been so far successful in taking other opposition parties into their hands and let the others fail in their aims. There are bright chances that the political temperature would reach sky high after Ramzan but yet it is too earlier to say that who will maintain strong hold on ball in the court. Inspite of that, it looks obvious that political history is about to be written once again.
The writer is Islamabad based Journalist and a Research Analyst. He can be reached at; www.facebook.com/obi.malik www.twitter.com/obaidrehman1990