The country has been in a political turmoil since the 2013 elections, the Pakistan Muslim League Nawaz (PMLN) won the elections with a huge majority but faced allegations of organized rigging. The allegations of rigging came not from a single party; in fact almost all parties claimed that the elections were not free and fair. It was the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) which was most vocal about the issue of rigging and demanded that polling bags should be opened in four constituencies; the demand was rejected by the Government. When the demands of PTI were not met the party started a sit-in in Islamabad which went on for 126 days and culminated in the formation of the Judicial Commission (JC). The JC which finally issued its report declared that although there were some irregularities in the 2013 elections but overall the elections were conducted in a free and fair manner and gave a clean chit to the PMLN Government.
The JC decision gave a huge boost to the Government which was under immense pressure due to the rigging claims of PTI. The JC verdict also dealt a severe blow to PTI. It was assumed that with the decision of JC the PTI will be weakened and the ruling party will face none existent opposition. However the recent decision of Election Tribunal’s (ET) in NA-122 and NA-154 have shifted the momentum back to PTI which has very much been vindicated in its stance that elections were not free and fair. The JC report and the decision of ET has resulted in two things, firstly the Government has gained stability after the JC gave them a clean chit on the 2013 elections. Secondly the subsequent decisions by ET’s have also strengthened the PTI which means that the PTI will once again play the role of a strong opposition which can only be good for democracy.
The decision by tribunals in NA-122 and NA-154 means that the Government will have to deal with a strong opposition.