- Remembering the lslamabad sit-in
Prime Minister Imran Khan addressed a charged gathering of Americans of Pakistani origin at Washington’s Capitol One Arena. Most of those present were PTI activists and sympathisers. During pauses in his speech there was recording of songs that were popularised during the 2014 Islamabad sit in. The gathering was a reflection of the support Khan enjoys among the expatriates despite the failure of its translation into significant donations to the dam fund or investments in the country. Khan had already held talks with some of the businessmen of Pakistani origin asking them to bring capital to Pakistan. What effect his appeal has remains to be seen.
Many in this country would readily agree with the Prime Minister that merit leads a country to progress while corruption retards economic development. In fact the importance given to merit and opposition to corruption by the PTI has rallied a large section of the educated urban middle class around PM Imran Khan. A fairly large number of youth and professionals who supported the PTI in the elections continue to stand by it in the face of the opposition’s charges and delay by the PTI government in implementing its promises as they consider Khan as the last hope for the country.
Honesty may well be one of the basic requirements in political leadership there are a number of other pre-requites that are obligatory for its success after it comes to power. Government leaders during the first decade of the country like Liaquat Ali Khan, Khwaja Nazimuddin, Ghulam Muhammad and Iskander Mirza were all upright in their personal lives. They spent whatever they had in politics instead of making use of their office for material gains. However despite their honesty some of them committed Himalayan blunders. The bad decisions taken by them laid the ground for the separation of East Pakistan, imposition of military rule and the strengthening of extremist tendencies. These could have been avoided if policies were made after proper debate and discussion at the right forums. The country was harmed as crucial decisions were taken without public inputs. The media was kept in chains, the opposition was sent to jail and the legislature was either ignored or sent home.