Pakistan’s disintegrated and polarised society, marred by the countless conflicts does not only need a major revamp. It requires a monumental systematic change to completely bring a new revolutionized system that ensures equity, economic parity, foolproof law and order and rudimentary requirements at doorsteps to allow masses live in an exemplary welfare state.
It can only be achieved if our institutions are allowed to develop, and strengthen independently under a watchful eye. The emergence of political leaders sans world-class institutions only leads to one disaster to another for Pakistan’s fragile economy.
Except for those people who have hard-core political beliefs, the reasons we vote for particular candidates could have less to do with politics and more to do with the basic cognitive processes—in particular, perception plays an important role in persuading people to vote for the legislators,
Competence–Qualification plays an important role. Other than rational political reasoning, facial expressions and features partly play an important role in tempting people to vote, argues Princeton psychologist Alexander Todorov in his research on electoral psychology.
In another separate research, Todorov, along with the psychologist Nikolaas Oosterfhof, used computer analysis and determined that our rankings of faces came down to two principal components: valence, or trustworthiness, and dominance, which convince the voters to vote. Masses in Pakistan vote based on factors which a civilized nation normally does not even consider. Different private channel conducted countless interviews on camera from different constituencies reflect a very odd picture.
The voters when opted to side with any party, particular PML-N, some would argue—so what if Nawaz is corrupt, we will still vote for him. Few would say, so what if he keeps a share of the public funds, at least he uses some! Have a look at metros, underpasses, bridges and Orange train etc. Even some were seen arguing, since, our ancestors/forefathers voted for PML, it’s a compulsion imposed on us to vote for them. No matter, what the argument is presented (by the anchor or opposing party supporters), voters would pay no heed to this, and undeterred voters would adamantly express their feelings. Any dose of logic is useless.
On the other hand, if PTI voters are asked about the accountability issues in KP, and failure to deliver BRT project on time, they would refute the argument, and the progression in governance, reduction in corruption, overhaul police department, improvement in education sector and groundbreaking progress in health sector would be the rhetoric waiting for the audience.
The advertising, social media campaigns, use of funds, literacy rate, age, religion and exposure to practical life can impact a choice. But, how would one explain the opinion of an individual standing near a garbage pile, an open gutter and still defending the party, which apparently broke the trust and brought the society to the brink?
Dominance may be the important factor in convincing people to vote. When Imran took part in 2013 elections, lots of new faces were launched, but the party failed miserably to define the crowded political gatherings into votes. The defeat was down to the absence of people of dominance. The countless individuals receive votes, despite deceiving the party workers for decades. The loyalty continues undeterred. Breaking the two-party system was already an achievement for Imran. People taunt and bash Imran for recruiting the electable, since, he categorically spoke against them in the past.
Why did he recruit them and faced the brunt of even his own supporters? The answer is simple. The psychological effect comes in to play. People don’t care about the competence. What triggers a response in Sindh for a ‘wadera’/landlords who never visit the constituency in 5-years? It’s sheer dominance.
Even, if one looks at the electoral choice available, it is clear that unless PTI did not recruit the electable, it was marginally placed better than its position in 2013. And, this too, despite fighting a battle against three-time PM on corruption allegations.
People even around the grand trunk road (who are relatively better educated) don’t consider Panama revelations and corruption an issue of Pakistan. In this situation, Imran Khan had to go after the dominant rulers of South Punjab. Even, the weakened PML-N (after corruption scandals against its leaders and blue-eyed bureaucrats), still remained strong enough to beat PTI, had it not recruited electable.
When the same electable eluded PML-N, it secured 15, national assembly seats in 2002. When PML-Q became weak in 2008, it obtained only 50-seats against the resurgent PML-N’s 89- seats. In 2013, electable having seen the tide favoring PML-N shifted their loyalties to succeed PML-N with 166 seats against PPP’s 42 and PTI’s 35 seats.
After Nawaz’s epic struggle in last two-years, same electable have jumped on the PTI bandwagon. This has been the story which disturbs PTI workers and swing voters in particular. Given the dominance of these so-called electable, there is no escape for a political party. Imran is looking to bring change, which was not possible without being elected as a PM. This is his chance to change the institutions to ensure education, health and other basic facilities for the public. If he wins, he has to strengthen institutions to dilute the power of electable. The strong justice system and world-class police force is a way forward to reduce the role of middlemen (councilors), patwari’s and other commission agents who blackmail people to vote for their candidate to ensure social work after elections.
Imran stands for change against the cronies and the present system of colonial times to liberate masses from this slavery under electable using these electable. Give Imran at least one chance to prove himself. His epic struggle of 22-years deserves it.