The opposition’s joint press conference outlining the strategy against the government going forward might have put many uncertainties to rest. The path to be taken has seemingly been established; Khurshid Shah has been designated as the point-man in the opposition camp, with PTI and other political parties throwing their weight behind him. However, there are rumours still, of dissention in the PTI camp – PTI politician Babar Awan’s statements outside the Supreme Court reflect that the party has not reached a consensus as to what the policy might do to pressurise the government. Beyond demanding a resignation, Senator Awan called for snap elections immediately.

This is something PTI must not pursue. While the opposition might see the Nawaz government at its weakest in terms of popular support, it is naïve to assume that PTI might be able to successfully challenge the ruling party on home soil in Punjab in elections held immediately. Imran Khan should not be on the wrong side of political wisdom, in an agitation movement yet again. Looking to go solo at a time when the opposition can pressure the government much more collectively is not sensible. To make this current battle against PML-N manageable – PTI needs to keep its allies close, and stick to the demand for resignation, a demand that is much more achievable and realistic.

And it’s not like PTI will overcome PML-N in a fresh round of elections even if they are held instantly. Discounting PML-N’s unwavering support is a mistake PTI has made before – it would be best to avoid a repeat of this. Not only that, but this gives PML-N the arsenal it so desires; attempting to send the government packing is sure to galvanise its leaders to fight against PTI, whatever the cost. A prolonged battle is only likely to allow for PML-N to gain lost ground.

The government is on the back foot, but the charges against Mr Sharif and his family are as yet unproven. Demanding early elections and dismissing a legitimate government for immediate political gain would cause PTI to lose the moral high ground it has gained as a result of its efforts in ensuring that the Sharifs would have to present themselves for accountability.

The best strategy for PTI and other opposition parties is to wait for the SC to weigh in on the JIT report. The damning nature of the content within and the reaction of the bench since the beginning of the Panama trial can lead us to safely assume that Nawaz Sharif and his family are in for a tough legal battle – but PML-N as a whole is still unscathed. Awaiting the results of the trial and hoping that the outcome dents the popularity of Nawaz Sharif is the only real opportunity for PTI to gain ground on the party. Going all-out now might end up causing more harm than good.