Democracy is hardly a new practice in the world of politics. Though, historically, it has roots in the teachings of the Greek philosophers, but the diverse political landscape of the world sometimes finds it difficult for democracy to thrive. Modern democracy escorts leaders to take decisions in a dependent way and it also makes them pretty much open to criticism, sometimes unnecessarily. In Pakistan, everybody seems pretty adamant of the democratic process and has an undisputed faith in the elections. But the most important prerequisite for democracy to prevail is education and the awareness to know what is right and what is wrong, or perhaps at least the relative good.
The lack of education and the know-how of political matters have seriously backfired in Pakistan and people at-large either considers their selves to be political pundits or analysts regardless of their level and nature of academic qualification. Ever since the 2013 General Elections and the subsequent win of PML-N, an average Pakistani has witnessed unprecedented political instability and turmoil. This chaos among many other things has significantly affected the political culture, economy, ongoing counter-terrorism operations and most importantly it had devastating effects on the Kashmir Issue. It would not be wrong to say that due to political instability perhaps Pakistan has lost a golden opportunity to seize the initiative that was actually ignited by the jubilant Kashmiri youth.
It is a fact that now PM Nawaz is not that of the 90s era and is a transformed man. He paved the way for counter-terrorism operations and gave a free hand to the security forces to eradicate the vermin of terrorism. People hear a lot about Nawaz Sharif’s atomic tests in 1998, motorways, restoration of the judges, metro bus projects but still many people are unaware that it is always him who steered Pakistan out of the economic and financial crisis. But still the governance issues are still at large in Pakistan. One may not question the legitimacy of Panama Papers, but it reflects the lack of understanding of our people that they are still dependent on others to investigate their own PM. The ongoing case in the Supreme Court of Pakistan must reach a logical conclusion in this regard. If PM Sharif is that much of a bad person then the question arises that why people elect him in an overwhelming numbers and also those elections were under strict monitoring of the international observers? It is noticeable that Z A Bhutto or even his daughter was not able to secure a two-third land-slide victory in the general elections, but Nawaz did.
Apart from the rightful and healthy criticism of the opposition parties, the recent public opinion polls and surveys show that people have not lost confidence in PM Nawaz, but they are hoping for more which they undoubtedly deserve; Gallup Pakistan, International Republican Institute, Institute for Public Opinion Research, Wall Street Journal, Pakistan Institute of Legislative Development and Transparency (PILDAT) and Transparency International reflect that the public opinion is in PM’s favour. The opposition is always a shadow government and provides vital source for the betterment in the policies. The national and international changing landscape demands a greater and enhanced role from the PML-N Government. The grievances of the opposition and especially Imran Khan’s are to be taken seriously pertaining to governance issues and foreign policy matters. The rebuttal by the N-League ministers and advisors on the criticism is entirely unnecessary and must be avoided. All the opposition parties emerge from within and must be respected.
In the words of Al-Jazeera analyst Tom Hussian, Nawaz Sharif is the only viable option for Pakistan. It can be said with confidence that Nawaz Sharif is relatively and comparatively the most competent politician in Pakistan having international stature and a symbol of the federation. He and the PML-N must accelerate their efforts in a lightning manner especially focusing on domestic issues like education, energy and health while cutting down corruption and to initiate a renewed lobbying in the new Trump Administration. PM Nawaz must have to adopt a hard rhetoric in relation with India and its espionage/sabotage activities against Pakistan so that the numerous sacrifices of the security forces may not harm or go in vain. One may disagree on this but the people of Pakistan have given their verdict and reiterated their undying support for him in the by-elections and in the survey polls as well. Everybody reserves the right to disagree with one’s opinion but keeping in view current trends, it can be predicted here that the 2018 Elections are going to be another victory for PM Sharif and PML-N.