Constitutionalism at Jhelum

Imran is not walking the talk

The loud complaint by PTI chief Imran Khan against the ouster of Punjab Governor Umar Sarfraz Cheema seems something of an excess, considering that Mr Khan has led his party in several disobedience of the Constitution, starting from the National Assembly Deputy Speaker’s ruling on March 6 dismissing the no-confidence motion instead of putting it to the vote, and going on even after his ouster. Just as Dr Arif Alvi as President has done his best to avert the Normal functioning of the federal government, refusing to take oath from the new Prime Minister or his Cabinet on the excuse of illness, Mr Cheema has refused to accept that the federal government no longer wants him as Governor, and Mr Khan pledge’s at Jhelum to fight the matter in the courts shows that all of this has been with his concurrence. It is interesting that Mr Khan looks to the courts to get relief, even though he has questioned why it was willing to open at nights where his ouster was involved. Mr Khan thus showed his support for the refusal of Mr Cheema to accept his denotification by the Cabinet Division.

His attempt to change the direction of his Abbottabad rally remark against Mir Sadiq, to Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif, did not remove the impression that he had been referring to someone, more easily comparable because Mir Sadiq had been commander of Sirajud Daulah’s army when his betrayal at Plassey cost him Bengal. The attempt to make Mr Sharif a Mir Sadiq did not really fool anyone. PTI leader Fawad Chaudhry, who hosted the rally, was also fooling non one by his claim that Mr Khan was ‘naming no one.’ Mr Chaudhry also announced that PTI would mover the Supreme Judicial Council against the Chief Election Commissioner.

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The PTI’s desire for constitutionalism would go down better if it itself showed obedience to it when entrusted with high constitutional office. To take every matter to court, and then to claim foreign conspiracy when the decision goes against is a path fraught with danger, which gives rise to calls for prosecution for high treason, which Article 6 of the Constitution defines as ‘subverting, suspending or abrogating the Constitution.’

The Editorial Department of Pakistan Today can be contacted at: [email protected]


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