By Sardar Khan Niazi
The condemnable firing incident of Wazirabad, in which apart from the attack on Imran Khan there was a casualty and many PTI stalwarts received injuries, must not fail to make political leaders realize how important it is to enter into fruitful talks with each other on issues of national interest.
A complete and thorough probe into the incident is needed to soothe distressed nerves, both by the Punjab government and the Interior Ministry. There is also a need for forensic evidence of bullets and weapons used in the attack. In case, it does not take place, there will be further political discontent stimulating economic chaos.
Life is becoming cheap by the day and it may get cheaper if the political leaders do not change themselves. It is unfortunate that violence is taking root in Pakistan, and the attack on the former prime minister by an unknown shooter is deplorable.
The most positive aspect of the incident was that the PTI and other political forces were seen on the same page as condemnations poured in. The government officials including Prime Minister, who was visiting China, castigated the attack and called for a thorough probe.
However, one cannot ignore the reality that several political leaders contributed to this situation by holding press conferences in which they simply blamed their rivals and tried to prove themselves innocent. Unless politicians shun revengeful politics, the situation will only worsen, worsening much more quickly than what we have seen so far.
The blame game between the PTI and the PDM government, as the latter went on to lay a siege to Islamabad by barricading it with containers, and deploying thousands of police and paramilitary personnel is disgusting and will lead the country to nowhere. It has already made the people nervous, and they are keeping their fingers crossed over what is next to come.
It is time to step back from the brink. Pakistanis are in need of a political solution to the mess at hand. Prudence demands that both sides should take a pause, and settle the conflicts away from the glare of the media. Assurances from either side to stick to the law and the constitution will act as the much-desired relief in this worrying scenario.
It was also Imran Khan’s responsibility to care for his life because he is the most popular leader of the time and millions of his followers had a lot of hope entrusted to him. It is surprising that he remained in the container without bulletproof glass and protective gear.
It does not mean that the federal government has no responsibility. Regardless of any public leader’s political preferences, it is binding upon the government to watch for any risk to his/her life and to go out of its way to ensure their safety.
The Long March was building momentum day by day, so it was natural that the PDM government was feeling nervous before it reaches Islamabad. The present government should have realized that the purpose of pressure building by PTI was to force them to announce elections.
Let us stop injecting hatred into body politics by making imprudent statements that further destroy the social fabric of the country. What is wrong with having a free and fair election that can resolve all issues? Please do not make your beloved homeland a lawless and dysfunctional country.
We are caught in the eye of the storm. Call for elections is now a requirement and not just a political move. The federal government should show some decency and announce fresh general elections.
Let us not allow hate in politics to deepen further and stoop to new lows, as the situation is already complicated.