Islamabad - The celebration of Romanian National Day at a local hotel was a crowded affair. The hall at the hotel was packed to capacity. The ratio between Pakistanis and diplomats attending the reception was fifty-fifty; a rarity. The presence of a large number of people was a testament to the fact that the Romanian Ambassador, Nicolae Gola and his wife enjoy friendly relations with residents of the capital.

As the beeline in the foyer area was moving on a slow pace, the guests filling the hall were delving for the buzz. Even Nawaz Sharif would not have asked so many questions during the onslaught at his Interior Minister Ahsan Iqbal for putting his government in a labyrinthine mess, the way the diplomats did at the reception. They were inquisitive and sad at the same time. “How can I convince my business council to come to Islamabad when they can’t even enter the capital of Pakistan? We make so much effort to engage our companies back home to come here because we love this country but the current situation has disheartened us”, commented an East-European ambassador, striving to increase trade projects between Pakistan and his country.  Ambassador of Tajikistan, Sherali S. Jononov, a young and energetic man, had the same questions on his mind as did Nawaz Sharif! How did the dharna participants manage to get such high-tech gears, and gas masks?

Another ambassador from an EU country informed during discussion that his ministry back home had called him up to ask about the situation in Islamabad. On browsing the internet, he found a scary picture of a stick-wielding bearded man in a big gas mask, waving his arms.

The city was in unmitigated chaos. Those commuting to Islamabad from Rawalpindi to earn their livelihood were in total hysteria as life was at a standstill during this hiatus.

What was more worrying is how the political scenario being described by private channels and media men frightened the public.

The sit-in surely provided food for thought and a topic for discussion at the reception. The role of army in amicably brokering the deal was also no secret to the public as the agreement duly signed on a white sheet of paper has been circulating on social media and being aired on television screens.  News anchors and prognosticators are now predicting the fall of the Sharif Empire sooner than later.

News, whether fake or real, is causing ripple effects in the strait waters. Senate Elections in March 2018 will definitely turn the tide in favor of PML-N and the numbers in the Senate of the ruling party will increase dramatically, giving them an edge when the two-third majority comes to their rescue.

 

 

ab khan