M. Bilal Abdul Ghani
Manifesto means what are the intentions, motives, and views of political party towards the problems of Pakistan. As election days draws nearer, every party is trying to pay die heart attention on making manifestos. Manifesto cover the policies, plan of action of any government if they will come into government. Through manifestos every party is trying to attract the voters and ensuring them solution of their problems lie in their hand if they vote for them but apathy is as soon as they come into government they forget about the masses of their constituency and their problems. People have to wait for days and nights to meet their representatives for the solution of their problems.
Is Pakistan peoples party is fighting a war of its survival? Is this election be decisive for PPP for maintaining the label of mainstream party? Is today’s PPP has moved away from theory of Bhuttoism that was Roti, Kapra aur Makan? Is Pakistan peoples party converted into only Sindh based party? The answer of all these questions is affirmative. Before going to comment on the new manifesto of Pakistan peoples party I would like to take the readers into past when Pakistan peoples party was party of all provinces and its leader Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto was the true representation of poor people, peasants, farmers, and of deprived people. His style to address the conglomeration was very popular and it was his personality which attracts a large number of gatherings and still know the workers of Pakistan peoples part are known as “Jiayals: A staunch worker”.
“In PPP’s Manifesto Bilawal showed his resolve to curtail the problems of poverty, hunger, malnutrition, unemployment, homelessness, health and educational services”
Pakistan peoples party is first party which has presented his election manifesto 2018. In manifesto, Bilawal Bhutto Zardari has announced the course of action if people will vote for them. Little Bhutto shed the light on all walks of life by telling social-democratic goals of party. He promised to make stronger and better policies to solve the problems of peoples of Pakistan. Bilawal Bhutto Zardari maintained that short term and short sighted policies has led the country under hefty debts. He highlighted the isolation of Pakistani community from international community, non-recognition of sacrifices of our forces in war against terror, high level trust deficit among the stakeholders. He aimed to solve the problems including Kashmir, Gilgit Baltistan according to the will of people. He also reiterated that election of GB and Azad Kashmir should be held with general election of Pakistan. He also talked about to continue the effort for Saraiki province of Southern Punjab. In Manifesto Bilawal also showed his resolve to curtail the problems of poverty, hunger, malnutrition, unemployment, homelessness, health and educational services. He assured the farmers for his support and subsidies in fertilizers for agricultural revolution in country. Additionally he claimed to equalize the minimum income of people equal to living wage of family. Adding more to it , he promised with the nation to solve the water crisis on war footing basis with long term, short term and midterm strategies.
Now comes to the practical application of manifesto, if we see previous tenure of PPP it seams that the new manifesto is just a book of revision of old promises, claims and assurances with new person and cover because in last tenure Asif Ali Zardari was on driving seat and now Bilawal has taken up seat of chairmanship. Pakistan peoples party has launched the Bilawal Bhutto to recover his shattered and distorted image of party due to poor progress of party in previous tenure i,e. 2008~2013. If we have a look at last tenure of Pakistan people’s party, there were crisis in every field of life that includes economic crisis as circular debt was in its peak, energy crisis as there were load shedding for more than ten hours in urban and 20 hours in rural area of Pakistan, corruption was in its peak as evident from NICL case, rental Power plant case. The institution went to lowes ebb of progress including Railways, Pakistan International Airlines and Pakistan steel mill. Over all progress of the country was negative and unsatisfactory which results the containment of party to one province. In election 2013, the situation was so grim and dismayed that it was wiped out from central Punjab and western Punjab and unable to win single seat form his stronghold. As a result a national level party became Sindh based party. The only reason for this dreadful defeat was poor performance of party when it was in government. They left the ideology of Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto which was ideology of poor and common man and it was “Roti Kapra or Makan”. Now the people are more cognizant than previous one and they are asking questions from their leaders about their presence and progress during five years.
“PPP is standing on the verge of drowning and fighting for his survival and revival”
Pakistan peoples party is trying to retrieve his lost position with attractive slogans “BB ka wada nibhana hay-Pakistan bachana hay”. But this is first step. In order to re-obtain his position PPP has to take following steps. First to adopt the aggressive style just like adopted by Zulfiqar Bhutto in public gatherings. Second they have to make a model progress in their wining constituencies upon which they can ask the people for votes as Sindh should be transformed into model province. Then Sindh will play an pivotal role to attract the people of Punjab. Third, they have to increase the checks on their ministers, and people working of administrative posts on their corruption and illegal practices. Fourth a cleanup operation is required to kick off the grafted people from party and reorganize the structure of party with new and young blood. Fifth a strong media management cell is required to defend the party’s narrative on media talk shows. This thing will help to improve the image of party. Sixth strategy is effective use of Bilawal card. If we see in broader aspect, two future leader was launched by two mainstream parties, one is Maryam Nawaz and second is Bilawal Bhutto but the public position and public holding as compared to Bilawal which is not good for Pakistan Peoples party. Last but not least, it has become compulsory for the top notch to start door to door campaign , to contact angry jiayalas, it means they have to recover their contacts with people of different areas and in constituencies of different provinces. People to people contact should be increased to revive the party position in central and western Punjab. PPP is standing on the verge of drowning and fighting for his survival and revival. This is do and die battle for Pakistan peoples party leadership and if this chances is wasted away then perhaps time will not give another chance for revival in Punjab and other provinces.
Furthermore, in order to change the fate of party and to become number one popular party of country they have to serve populace of this country with zeal and zest. They have to come out from stigma of corruption through proper course of action. If they adopt all these steps then there is advantage of manifesto otherwise it will be no more than a piece of paper or redundant document and as a result most probably party will lost its major vote banks from rural and urban Sindh. Pakistan peoples party has no chance of ignorance for its revival through war like steps. This thing will ultimately improve the image of country at domestic and international level, which is common and ultimate goal of every Pakistan. Long Live Pakistan!.
Muhammad Bilal Abdul Ghani is a Mechanical Engineer from the University of Engineering and technology Lahore. He can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org