(By Kashif Manzoor)
In an era where capitalism is dying quietly, in a region where end game of the great game is at his peak, in a country labeled as the failed state, in a polity where politicians are nothing more than liability, with an economy advancing only in reverse direction, in a state where only western and vested interest are pursued and rest are found as wasted interest, in a system on the verge of a devastating collapse, what should an establishment – the prime custodian of any modern nation-state- should ask for..?
Let us be more precise in this exercise and take Pakistan (yes, you guessed it rightly) as a case study. Like any establishment, Pakistani establishment wants status quo to prevail. Then the next question arises: what is status quo in Pakistan. Like almost all the modern nation-state, Pakistan is a liberally secular democracy prostrating at the ‘shrine’ of capitalism. Although with a 98 % muslim majority the masses wants the Islamic system but they have been tamed rather successfully by the establishment via strange amalgam of Islam and Democracy. So the obvious requirement is to find someone conforming this fundamental policy dictate. There have been lots of options available to the establishment in the likes of beloved left wing PPP, MQM and ANP etc but to her utter dismay all have been regional parties except PPP. And adding insult to the injury is the fact that PPP knows everything but governance with outrageous corruption and cronyism in the major credentials. So now they were left with the Hoffman’s choice; the so called right wing consisting of all the leagues from A to Z and lead by the very N League. But the problem remains the same and both the wings are found perfectly capable failing the system again and again.
So what should be the job description? A progressive liberal party is required which can revamp the economy, modernize and more importantly rehabilitate the governance. That should be a party which should simultaneously be liberal but should also provide scope for the religious minded majority of the country. To handle the post US-retreat from Afghanistan a dependable aide is cherished who shall have popular supports behind it. To cope with the Leviathan of rampant corruption a Mr. clean is a must. Wait, you got it, Bingo. It is the one and only Imran Khan which befits these rather “improbable” criteria.
Not only the establishment but liberal elite, civil society and secular media should also support PTI if they are sincere with their idealism, especially after the resurgence of Taliban in Afghanistan in particular and revival of Islamic ideology in Muslim world. PTI’s incumbency would only yield into one result and that is a liberal Pakistan and the liberals of Pakistan are wasting precious time by not supporting Imran Khan. Likewise in PTI, international establishment should be comfortable for a long term perspective as it assures the values of globalization. So the bottom line is, PTI should not only be the darling of establishment but it should be regarded as the last hope for status quo..!
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