Islamabad [Pakistan], July 29 (ANI): Amid political instability and economic chaos, former Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan is trying to polarize the country by insisting on talks with the proscribed organization Tehreek-i-Taliban Pakistan (TTP), the separatists of Balochistan and Sindh.
In his latest speech on Wednesday, Imran insisted that while he was ready to talk to groups such as the TTP, and banned Baloch and Sindhi outfits which have indulged in political violence in the past, he was not ready to talk to ‘thieves’, wrote The News International in an editorial.
Instead of taking a step back from political rhetoric and finding a way forward, Imran prefers talking to those who have killed children and thousands of innocent Pakistanis to talking to his political opponents.
Imran Khan is invoking religious symbolism, while holding political opponents worse than terrorist organizations, said The News.
The ‘thieves’ in this case are the PTI’s political opponents, the Pakistan Muslim League – Nawaz (PML-N) and the PPP – parties whose members have been elected by the people and who have ruled the country for decades.
Imran and the Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf (PTI’s) refusal to sit at a table and discuss issues has been holding back the country for months and indeed even did so all through the PTI’s three and a half years in power, reported The News.
As per the editorial, Pakistani politicians need to lower the political temperatures in the country instead of using the “religion card” which has now become an even more dangerous tool of rhetoric.
Moreover, the animosity between political parties in Pakistan is on the upsurge.
PTI’s stance during the oath controversy while the PML-N was in power the last time, Ahsan Iqbal taking a bullet in May 2018 after a sustained misleading campaign is a case in point.
Moreover, the PTI and its leader do know the consequences such talk has in a country like Pakistan. It is obvious they don’t care, said The News.
It is also odd that on the one hand the PTI has been sending signals about willingness regarding dialogue with the government on important issues like an electoral framework for the next elections, and on the other Imran dismisses any such idea in such a belligerent manner.
Unfortunately, they have not been alone in this. In the past, nearly every mainstream party has indulged in the same dangerous game, and has ended up suffering when the other side counters with a similar attack.
Taking U-turns may be the sign of a great leader for Imran Khan but taking a U-turn on this issue and then asking for fresh elections will not be taken kindly by the government either, said the editorial.
With a flailing economy and a society barely holding on to what little civility it had, Pakistan needs political leaders who are willing to accept that the ethos of democracy lies in sometimes reaching across the aisle for the greater good. And at the moment, the ‘greater good’ lies in political stability.
While upping the animosity may help fuel a rally or two, the PTI must realize that the message it is sending out will not help the country. Neither will talking to terrorist groups, advised The News. (ANI)