At the recent session of United Nations General Assembly, Prime Minister Imran Khan delivered an address which was applauded by all. He, quite successfully, resonated the General Assembly with his spontaneous yet impactful words. Even some of his harshest critics praised him for his impeccable deliverance of the core issues facing Muslim world in general and Pakistan in particular. His speech wasn’t just a rant about the many difficulties faced by Pakistan in today’s world. Rather, he touched upon the issues collectively faced by the world. Be it Climate Change or money laundering and tax heavens. Not just that, he took the charge as a spokesperson of Muslim Ummah and masterfully laid down the reservations faced by a quarter of world’s population.
The final and unarguably most important segment of his sermon-cladded speech was the belligerence of India in Indian occupied Kashmir and the unimaginable consequences it could have for the entire world. Instead of highlighting the human right abuses in Kashmir; he chose to focus on the likely instability that would grip this planet as an aftereffect of India’s jingoism in Kashmir. Rightly so, because today’s world is far more concerned with the possibility of instability than human right violations because instability in one part could snowball to other corners of the world. No-one wants their home, their turf to be in the line of fire. In short, Imran Khan delivered all the right notes at the right time.
But if being an exceptional orator translated into a capable leader than the likes of William Jennings Bryan, regarded as one of the best speakers of all times, wouldn’t have lost the United States Presidential election not once but twice. Imran Khan suffers from the same dilemma. While he could impressively talk the talk but when it comes to walking the walk, he falters miserably.
The last 15 months since Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaaf held the reins of power in the country have been nothing short of a nightmare for the populace. The same lot that exercised its right to vote to bring into the power those who promised ‘Tabdeeli’ is getting disappointed day by day. The brash and senseless policies of the incumbent government has further plunged Pakistan into downward spiral of social, economic and political degradation.
The GDP growth for the fiscal year 2019 is expected to be less than 3 percent- the least in Asia. While in the last 71 years Pakistan’s total debt and liabilities were Rs. 30 trillion, however, in the last year alone it has rose to Rs. 40 trillion – an unprecedented increase of Rs. 10 trillion. Not just that, since its inception, the Pakistani rupee hasn’t ever seen the depreciation that it has seen in the last year. Such mismanagement and incapabilities are a big bloat on the face of those who while in opposition claimed to turn the fate of the country for better if handed the responsibility to steer the state machinery. Playing the blame-game is no longer enough for PTI to hide its own blunders and misjudgments. Imran Khan must come out of his own little bubble of ignorance and take some hard-hitting steps to put the country on the right path. He should no longer let his cronies get away with harsh blunders through flattery.
Today, Pakistan is a breeding ground for dengue virus. Polio cases are at record high in the last year. Karachi has sunk and it’s wreckage paints a picture of a filth-cladded origin of maladies. So much so that even one of the flagship projects of Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaaf; the Bus Rapid Transit project has been embroiled in controversy after controversy regarding mass corruption which has stretched its cost and duration manifold.
While the wages remain stagnant and the prices of daily household items skyrocket, will the “Aap ne mayoos nahee hona” mantra of Imran Khan hold candle any longer? I think not.
The state of political machinery isn’t a relief for sore eyes either. With many key positions in the hands of non-elected, It seems that those in whom the commoners vested their confidence of representing them were found inadequate for the very purpose that they were elected. Instead, important portfolios were distributed among Imran Khan’s blue-eyed gentlemen. After all, what could be expected from a government that worked for fifteen months under the deputy speakership of a legislator who stepped into the corridors of power through a rigged election.
Imran Khan, in his United Nations General Assembly asked a question that whether Muslims were children of the less God? Certainly not. But Mr. Imran Khan should also realize that the one-third of his own countrymen living below poverty line aren’t the children of lesser God either. Those facing increasing police brutality aren’t the children of lesser God either. Those living in disease-ridden streets of Karachi aren’t children of lesser God either. And certainly those who put their faith, their truth and their hope in the so-called ‘Tabdeeli’ aren’t the children of lesser God either.
To me, Imran Khan, up-till now has failed miserably to fulfill even an iota of the promises he made while leading to elections. Certainly his claims have been nothing but wishful thinking at best and political stunts at worst. Still, PTI is left with a little under four years to prove their mettle. However, up-till now, Imran Khan’s oratory skills have been at a much higher ground than his leadership abilities.