A gift that keeps on giving is our democratic leadership’s hypocrisy. Rana Sanaullah, the head of the PML-N in Punjab, called retired Gen. Qamar Bajwa a “national criminal” who had committed a “crime bigger than a murder offence.” The supreme leader of his party, Nawaz Sharif, who has held Mr. Bajwa directly accountable for his expulsion on numerous times and now wants him to be held accountable for his “crimes,” made a remark that he was reiterating. However, only a day later, Mr. Sanaullah all but confirmed a long-held allegation that his party had also worked with Gen. Bajwa to overthrow the PTI. However, just one day later, Mr. Sanaullah all but confirmed a long-held allegation that his party had aided Gen. Bajwa in his efforts to overthrow the PTI. In response to a question on the PML-N’s support for Gen. Bajwa’s three-year extension in 2019, which he referred to as a “strategic move,” Mr. Sanaullah appeared on television. “It would seem that the consequences of that decision allowed us to achieve our goal,” Mr. Sanaullah remarked, referring to the goal of lessening the “intensity” with which the “fitna” and “fasaad” of the PTI was then prevailing over the nation. The PML-N leader said, “Sometimes things seem a certain way, but their implied effects [sic] are something else.” The PML-N leader continued, “Sometimes things appear to be one way, but their suggested repercussions [sic] are another.
Was it hubris that caused Mr. Sanaullah to accuse the PML-N and the military of participating in what he has described as a plan to overthrow the PTI administration and seal the deal with a quid pro quo? Or did he mean to imply that the PML-N had ‘used’ the former army chief for its own political ends through political cunning? It is challenging to reconcile the PML-N’s new position with its leaders’ effusive thanks when in power, especially in light of how frequently former PM Shehbaz Sharif publicly hailed and commended Gen Bajwa for his contributions. Realpolitik or vile hypocrisy? Time will tell. The PML-N’s new stance and its leaders’ exuberant thanks when in power are challenging to reconcile. Realpolitik or vile hypocrisy? Only time will tell. One also cannot help but recollect how, in the middle of the political stalemate that erupted in 2022, Gen. Bajwa and ISPR frequently reassured the populace of their “neutrality.” It has now been claimed that was untrue by the PTI’s primary victim. If the PTI head had accurately identified the role that institution’s leadership had played, can it be criticised that he directed his wrath towards them? Perhaps it would be preferable to save these queries until another time.