- Democracy is the art of the possible
Prime Minister Imran Khan does not want to touch the opposition with a bargepole. Strongly believing that he has been assigned the sacred mission of putting an end to corruption in the country, he has decided to start with the opposition parties. Two years in power, and Mr Khan has yet to come down his high horse. At a time when passing the FATF-related laws requires the government and the opposition to join hands, he would not have the PTI to go seeking the ‘corrupt’ opposition’s help. He would rather get the bills passed by convening the joint session of Parliament, bypassing the opposition altogether.
Despite denial by the PTI and PML(N) that they sought concessions in the NAB Ordinance in return for supporting the government bills, the PM continues to claim that the two parties wanted the government to provide relief to their ‘corrupt’ leaders by accepting the amendments proposed by them. With this mindset, there is little possibility of the government and opposition agreeing on a joint NAB bill.
Flexibility and compromise are basic requirements to run a country practicing democracy. The terms are however swearwords for Mr. Khan. Whatever their other kinks and quirks, the PPP and the PML(N) leaders have over the years learnt to work with each other as well as with parties which differ with them on numerous issues. One had vainly hoped that after working together for two years with a whole lot of old sinners that he had condemned and ridiculed in the past, Mr Khan would develop working relations with the opposition also to run the country.
The opposition had helped improve the two FATF-related laws, suggesting amendments which were passed by Parliament on Thursday. The two major opposition parties are still willing to work with the PTI government to pass other laws after proper debate and discussion. The opposition also wants the government to complete its tenure. Mr Khan’s policy of driving the opposition into a corner will however leave it with no option other than joining hands with Maualna Fazlur Rehman who is keen to overthrow the government through agitation.