In 2013, I was a staunch supporter of Imran Khan. Calling him my hero, goading my brothers to join him in his famous container protest and whatnot had been some of my memories to recall. However, as time wore on, and things started unfolding, for instance, Khan’s wedding immediately after APS, was the very first incident to put me off. People were mourning the sudden and brutal murders of their children, at that time coming on T.V to flash your wedding pictures came off quite indifferent. I felt detached and to fulfil that instinct for politics I looked for another option and in Pakistani politics it’s not hard to find, right? PMLN with their Vote Ko Izat do accompanying, apparently, a democratic stance gave fillip to my ego and for a while I defended them like a patwari. Nothing, however, lasts forever and once again when PMLN and PPP being opposition parties appeared eager to move and approve an undemocratic act, I grew disappointed and there when I officially slipped into the line of centrist or to specify “An equal opportunity offender”. The realization that no party was representing us proved to be a bitter but at least a realistic position.
The purpose of blabbering all this gibberish is to make actually only one point that no political party in a true sense represented people but always chased their own vested interest. For them, it was never the fight for people, but rather a tug of power for themselves, even if it came at the cost to people. To be honest, democracy in Pakistan has been an illusion, a tactical manoeuvre for the all-powerful to exploit in their favour to dupe their followers enhancing their vote bank. Besides, this anti-establishment sentiment was just a ruse; in reality, these politicians fought with each other to curry favour with the establishment, to climb up their shoulders to the corridor of power, whenever they had the chance and whoever grabbed the opportunity became the blue-eyed while leftover turned into revolutionaries. Seriously, needless to mention all the historical incidents confirming my point.
Democracy in Pakistan has been an illusion, a tactical manoeuvre for the all-powerful to exploit in their favour to dupe their followers, enhancing their vote bank.
The only difference here, however, was the conspicuous approval of PTI towards the military. They never shied away from acknowledging the establishment’s crutches keeping them afloat in their tenure. PPP and PMLN did the same in their turn, right? So before all else, let’s not call it the victory of democracy. IT’S NOT. Democracy did not win, just like in the past, it became the scapegoat, a sacrificial lamb by the same people it was supposed to be defended by. Once again, the undefeatable establishment turned out to be the only victorious, with the only exception that this time the blue-eyed happened to be at the receiving end.
Since his entry into power, Imran Khan from borrowing his term from allies to alienating opposition to the level of hostility, underwent a peculiar ebb and flow of politics. Or more was a term of populist. On a personal level, for the past four years, I never adored him. Obviously, his incessant use of religion to win over common masses (the favourite ploy of every politician), his obnoxious MNAs (specifically, the one who kept using the issue of Khatm-e-Nabooat till the very last day), his misogynistic views including sheer victim-blaming and a total disregard for the democratic process (the fact that he turned opposition to enemies multiplying them by zero) were too flagrant to be overlooked. Yet, Yet, I wanted him to complete his term setting the very first precedent for any Prime Minister to complete his five-year term, but clearly, power-hungry politicians could not wait. Here, what actually baffles my mind is their insatiable hunger for power, always grappling with each other to grab. All of these parties, for one or two terms in the centre or in provinces, enjoyed the fruits of power, yet they could not wait at least five years to let Imran, who by the way was the newcomer to the politics-game, complete his term. Once again, they played into the same hands of undemocratic forces, they were hell-bent on fighting against. Another time, they proved Georg Hegel right “The only thing that we learn from history is that we learn nothing from history.”
Besides, what would have happened in the worst-case scenario, had they allowed Imran Khan to complete his term? If it’s about the economy, I do not see this new government waving a magic wand to improve it in a year or so, or about inflation? Beyond any doubt, they all know the real reasons behind inflation so either they would continue the same path or start a repeated mantra of “the previous government is to blame”
Once again, people felt betrayed. Once again, a political martyr had been given a life to be followed even by his adversaries.
Opposition’s personal grudge for Imran Khan got the best of them. They should have allowed him to complete his term and in case, Imran Khan had failed in delivering, they would have veered it in their favour. Instead, the heads of the judiciary and military, along with the entire legislature, jumped to the ground to oust him. For the first time, people felt bad for him even people like me, who were his opponents( According to the latest news, people had already put a huge protest in Islamabad to register their anger). The person who could have been defeated in the next election was turned into a hero. His ferocious role in the opposition is not a distant memory, we all remember his unformidable attitude toward government, it could have been undermined, instead, his views have been beefed up. Once again, people felt betrayed. Once again, a political martyr had been given a life to be followed even by his adversaries. In the years to come, it will be proven that the breath of an injured lion is far more dangerous than his roar. But alas, it will be too late to introspect.