- And JUI-F’s shot across the bow
He said he would provide jobs and houses. Then he promised to give hens and eggs and calves to the unemployed to help them earn their living. Lately he has been saying that he would be Kashmir’s ambassador and make India undo the revocation of Article 370 and lift the restrictions imposed on IOK. Frustrated over his failure to fulfill any of the promises made, the PM has now decided to act as a facilitator to resolve the Iran-Saudi dispute. He also wants to arrange ‘some sort of dialogue’ between Iran and the US to get the nuclear deal restored, thus hoping to succeed where the European signatories of the deal have miserably failed. The PM needs to realize that the real test of his leadership lies in resolving the enormous problems that the masses face at home.
The first year of the PTI rule has made peoples’ lives miserable. The number of the unemployed has risen by tens of thousands. The prices of the commodities of daily use and the rise in utility bills have added further to peoples’ distress. If one is to go by the latest WB report, the second year of the PTI’s tenure offers little prospect of improvement in the common man’s livelihood. Growth is expected to remain low in the near term as the economy is stagnating amid deficits and low reserves. Yet another macroeconomic crisis due to high twin deficits and low foreign reserves is likely to slow down the economy.
Weeks before the JUI-F’s Azadi March was to begin, the federal ministers along with their PTI colleagues in KP and Punjab started issuing statements that indicated the government’s nervousness. With the doctors in KP on strike for over two weeks now and the trading community having announced a countywide strike on 28th and 29th the government fears the Azadi March will attract several sections of society.
The government may weather the coming storm as the two mainstream parties are not ready to put their full weight behind the JUI-F. Another year of unrelieved suffering and there would be more formidable protests against the government. There is a need for the PM to focus on the common man’s problems instead of wasting time on foreign tours.