It is noted with concern that even though the string of rallies that the Pakistan Democratic Movement (PDM) meant to conduct ahead of its planned march on the capital have finished and it could well be time for a government-opposition collision that could leave the entire system paralyses, the ruling party is still looking to fight fire with fire and there is no indication whatsoever that the two sides might even consider a negotiated settlement to all their differences.
There is no denying that opposition parties are being provocative and their demand that the prime minister should resign before they can even consider anything is undemocratic. But let’s not forget that Pakistan Tehreek e Insaf (PTI) used similar tactics when it was in opposition and the fact that then ruling party Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) refused to accept their resignations from parliament reflected the latter’s political maturity.
Now that the shoe is on the other foot, however, things seem taking a very different turn. And there is some weight in the argument that at the core of all the problems is the ruling party’s downright refusal to so much as sit and talk about anything at all with anybody from the opposition. The reason for such inflexibility is of course Prime Minister Imran Khan’s belief that anybody who has been in power before him was inherently corrupt and simply looted national wealth.
While how true or otherwise such beliefs are remains to be seen, there can be no denying that the parliamentary system cannot work unless both government and opposition play their respective roles. And that is simply not possible if there is no communication between the two.No matter how much both parties escalate the already hostile political situation in the country, eventually they will have to sit across the table and talk it out. And how much the situation deteriorates between now and then is squarely in the government’s control.
The prime minister only recently admitted, much to the regret of some of his own party members, that he and his team came to the job somewhat unprepared. He must now display the political maturity needed to keep such thoughts from occupying any more space in people’s minds. It is after all the federal government’s main job and responsibility to ensure that the system works for the benefit of the people and the state. It must, therefore, take the first step and offer a comprehensive dialogue to the opposition to keep it from causing any more harm to the country.