Defenders have to play!

Dr. Hassnain Javed

August 31, 2018




Around 40 million votes were cast during the democratic elections in Pakistan on July 25, 2018. The Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI), took the lead by securing 16,823,792 votes, whereas in 2007, it barely managed to secure 70,000 votes. In contrast, the Pakistan Muslim League- Nawaz (PML-N) received 12,894,225 votes, the same amount of votes they did in the previous elections. . Moreover, Pakistan Peoples Party’s (PPP) have increased its voter bank by 0.4 million. Tehreek-e-Labbaik Pakistan (TLP) received 2,191,679 votes. Nonetheless, the Muttahida Majlis–e–Amal (MMA) secured 2,530,452 votes, and the Allah-O-Akbar Tehreek got 171,441 votes. Collectively the religious vote is still more than 0.55 million. On the flip side, independent results depict more than 0.6 million votes cast.

PML-N has had the same number of votes as they did in previous elections, (it implies that irrespective of the Panama judgment, their vote bank remains the same). Although upon closer inspection, PTI has experienced a drastic growth and have been able to generate 1 million new votes. Even though, PTI is in power, a failed democratic system is prevalent, and the only way to survive under such circumstances is the formation of a National Government, or to switch to a Presidential form of governance.

In order to address the importance and urgency of the above stated democratic elections, I have divided my stance into three sections, which include the need to change, urgency for change and being proactive towards change. After the allegations and charges against the ex-prime minister of Pakistan, it is essential to maintain the integrity of free and fair trials. The defenders have to play a role in restructuring and reforming the system. Therefore, they use internal and external resources to streamline the issues and get them resolved in the best possible way. They have not only pushed the judicial authorities for just trails, but have also played a key role in managing the elections. Unfortunately, Pakistan’s economy has the strings of corruption attached to it. Every corner of society except the defenders are believed to be corrupt.

Therefore, the need to change was evident. The urgency to change, however, requires a face which is less corrupt and evil than traditional politicians. The delirious economy, the riff raff of corrupt status quo parties and the many external challenges of Pakistan; requires integrity, vision and perseverance, all qualities which are believed to be embodied by Imran Khan.

Urgency to change has been addressed as the nation voted wisely in the recent democratic elections. A leader from the new political party has been elected. Thus, it is the time for the higher authorities to become proactive to change. Pakistan’s foreign office requires a rewiring of its structure. Shackles of bureaucracy should be broken to become a geo-economic rather than a geo-strategic institution. New avenues and linkages to enhance regional connectivity are crucial, with a focus on commerce (trade and transit) and planning. The role of ministries and relevant provincial departments needs to be redefined and made central. The dire need to coordinate and manage regional connectivity functions across civilian and military spheres, and demands the attention of the Prime Minister, or a body performing directly under him.

Moreover, I would suggest that the newly elected Prime Minister follow the pattern of third world countries which have now turned into developed nations. For instance, our neighbour China, despite being a densely populated nation has improved its economy over time. But, to follow China we need to adopt the same tactics to transform our society.

The Chinese have primarily focused on their economic policy along with introducing a wide array of reforms in the state owned sector that dominated the economy in the early 1990s. Later, these state owned enterprises were transformed into corporations. Furthermore, since 1998 China has launched a policy of “letting small enterprises go” through privatization and closure, as well as restructuring large companies. By implementing this strategy the number of state-controlled industrial enterprises decreased by one and a half million within a span of five years.

Therefore, I would suggest that the current government focus more on policies which will boost our economy in the shortest span of time.