The nation was expecting a bed of roses two years ago. This perception was created through Pakistani media for the current ruling party to push it into power by a mighty business group that funded and supported it at all levels. The government remained confused initially because of the hangover in the party over its victory and was not ready to set up experienced teams. The party had actually unrealistically raised the hopes of the voters which were not possible to fulfil due to a deteriorating economy.

The government miserably failed to plan a strategy to overcome the economic crunch, and in the normal course of briefing by the bureaucracy, it has sufficient grounds to convince the PM to get more loans from IMF and World Bank. In fact, his own finance minister led him in pleading for further loans.”
Whatever I had predicted, turned out to be right as the Prime minister had to succumb to the pressure of his bureaucracy, especially his finance team. This was the first confusion of the government and first forced betrayal of PTI towards its voters. This confusion brought up multiple issues for the PM and he started losing his grip on administrative, political, and institutional control under his domain. He unnecessarily created a row with the Sindh government which was carried forward by his immature media team, making it even worse and it became a continued feature both in parliament and on the TV shows. It is not only counterproductive but also leaves a bad taste on both sides to cooperate on matters relating to the federal and the Centre. History repeated itself and the PM got trapped and has become a hostage in the hands of his three bureaucrats (I would not like to make mention but whenever the historians will write about the fall of the Imran Khan government, then these three bureaucrats will be mentioned to be the cause of the failure). Pakistan’s bureaucracy now stands divided by pro and anti-PTI groups. I wish this government may complete its constitutional tenure and perhaps the PM may give a hard try with some additional new team members.

The sugar and wheat storms jolted the government badly. The main challenge is the economic debacle that could not be rectified in two years. Here are some indicators below:

-   Fall of the rupee from 124 in July 2018 vis-a-vis the dollar, to 167 today— it is likely to go up to Rs 170-2.

-   Inflation rate from 5.8% in July 2018 to 11-12% today. More price hike is likely to hit the common man.

-   A decline or stagnation in exports is another factor that constitutes failure.

-   Fall of growth rate from 5.8% to 1.9% which had dropped to a record low of -1.55% in the end of the financial year 2020.

-   Continued fall in remittances will affect the balance of payments and COVID-19 is going to dent it more adversely.

-   Both years ended with budget deficits amounting to more than 3 trillion.

-   The price hike is increasing because of high inflation.

Unfortunately, the wheels which generate economic activity have now come to a near standstill due to COVID-19. This pandemic has shut transport, from the train service to aviation service and tourism has also gone down to zero, businesses are closed and poor economic policies have brought further miseries to our economy. Another major challenge for the PM was to keep the balance of power between the civil government and other institutions. He went along well in the beginning but gradually this understanding between the provinces and institutions started to deplete so much so that the people close to the corridors of power are not confident now whether IK will be able to sail his ship of power to the shore with the present team.

I had dealt with this kind difficult situation and had to create a balance of power for five highly-sensitive years. The government of today is in a state of confusion and paralysed situation as they do not have any solid plan on how to move forward. The government has failed to give good administration and economic models in order to bring political, judicial, and domestic and foreign policy reforms. To be fairer with this government I would like to point out that the economic situation of the country was not great because of the heavy forgiven debts. Our government has also utterly failed to halt Modi’s brutalities in Kashmir. Has the government of Pakistan made any move to any international forum to agitate his atrocities forcefully; the answer is no.

Mr PM! Kashmiris do not want flowery statements but a practical approach by Pakistan through UNSC & IHRC to halt Indian brutalities in Kashmir. The nation is confused on the weak stances of the government on Kashmir and people also have got this impression is developing now that maybe there is a secret deal of compromise between India and Pakistan on Kashmir.

People are further confused and disappointed by the fact that none of the Muslim countries has backed us in the matter of Kashmir. The situation of rule of law is deteriorating and the crime rate is on increase. The government could have controlled COVID-19 if proper measures were observed including lockdown, but half-hearted actions have created further problems. Today Pakistanis are banned from visiting Europe and moreover our national airline has also been banned over flight safety issues in light of recent statements made by the government.

Political polarisation is at its peak and the Parliament house looks like a wrestling ring. I think we need more political maturity with a pragmatic approach. This confusion with the system and government may bring some serious setbacks hence we all have to think about how to follow the middle path to steer the nation out of crises.

I once again advise the PM to call an APC and inform the nation of all the issues and appeal for unity and move forward with the entire leadership and provide a national plan to end the confusion and give hope to the distressed nation. We must advocate for a ‘Pakistan First’ policy.

Note: Opinions expressed are solely my own and not necessarily to reflect the views or opinions of my party.