When Imran Khan first promised tabdeeli, one didn’t expect the discussion to be about whether he is to wear a shirwani to his oath. Well, so long as he doesn’t wear that thin Jinnah cap Mian Nawaz wore, a style popularised by President Ayub Khan. Another problem has been getting Indian stars to attend his oath. Kapil Dev, Sunil Gavaskar and Navjot Singh Sidhu were to represent his cricketing past, Amir Khan his Shaukat Khanum fundraisers. Maybe someone told him to keep these stars back for the fundraisers. And maybe someone told him Indian PM Narendra Modi wasn’t coming, so the stars wouldn’t either.
Anyway, Imran got a taste of what it means to be PM when he spoke to Modi anyhow, over the phone, when the latter rang up to congratulate him on being elected. The same day, he gained a sample of another angle, when he met PML(Q) chief Ch Shujat Hussain. Both experiences he will have repeatedly: talking to a foreign leader, and to an ally. I suppose there’s some commonality, that Modi is from India’s Gujarat state, while Ch Shujat is from our own Gujrat district.
I see that Imran has said he won’t move into PM House. Easy for him to say. What with a house in Bani Gala. Did Imran ask his wife before saying this? If he was wise, he did. It’s worth noting that there has been a change in 45 years. Back in 1973, the PM’s wife was Begum Nusrat Bhutto. Now it will be Imran’s third wife. In fact, his wife will decide about what he wears for his oath.
Speaking of ex-cricketers, has anyone wondered what all of those greats will be up to now that they won’t get to Imran’s oath-taking? One, Kapil Dev, has made it to the Indian seniors golf team. He won the World Cup eight years before Imran, but no one has made him PM yet. Instead, he’s joined a select list; those Test cricketers who’ve also played another sport for their country. There’s always been a link between cricket and golf, with batsmen often taking it up after retirement. And there’s also been a link between cricket and soccer in the UK. Will Imran turn out for the national soccer team next?
Maybe Kapil Dev joined the seniors golf team to avoid going into the ICU. I assume Indian ICUs are as well run as the next, but the monsoons are doing strange things these days. Like flood the Nalanda Medical College hospital’s ICU in Patna, Bihar. Well, we shouldn’t mention ICUs in the same breath as Imran, should we?
That might be a punishment for beef eating. I’m sure beef eating must be behind the suicide of seven members of the same family in Ranchi, Jharkhand state. A man, his wife and children, and two unmarried brothers, were the seven people, including an infant, found hanging from fans, leaving behind some writings which gave the impression that they were involved in some mystic practices.
There’s an eerie resemblance to the 11 members of the same extended family who were found hanging from the roof of their house in Delhi. A mother, her two sons, her daughter, and their families, all were found dead, including three 12-year-olds, leaving behind some mystic writings.
These were not people who seemed excessively religious. Is this the effect of having a BJP government? More opportunities for Hindu extremists? We shouldn’t be too self-satisfied. Haven’t we elected a PM with a mystic wife? Of course, we aren’t going to expel anyone, the way Muslims are being expelled from Assam on the charge of being Bangladeshi. They’re to be omitted from the National Register of Citizenship. Thousands are already in an odd no-man’s-land in refugee camps, which an Indian commission has found to be in inhuman conditions.
Imran should be worried about what is happening in the rest of the world, for it almost seems as if there is an international need for his guidance. If any country needed a dharna, it would be Zimbabwe, where the incumbent President claims to have won. There’s been a presidential election in Mali too, and there too there have been allegations of rigging. There haven’t been any allegations in Cambodia, but since the ruling party won again, just as they’ve done since 1985, is reason enough for a dharna. The Cambodian PM, Hun Sen, is 85. Ha! At that age, Imran will still be getting the youth vote. And his hair will still be as flowing as today.
The flowing of locks may have got Atif Khan the nod for KP CM, ahead of Pervez Khattak. Atif, Khattak’s Primary and Secondary Education Minister, has never contested on any other ticket, while Khattak is an old PPP man. Hair seems to be playing a role in the PTI’s picks, with Aleem Khan in the race for Punjab, called Hairy ever since his transplant. Yasmeen Rashid is a possible choice, and as a lady hair won’t be an issue, though her medical speciality, gynaecological oncology, involves patients with hair issues after chemotherapy.
That’s what her erstwhile opponent, Begum Kulsoom Nawaz, is undergoing in the UK. Her husband, Mian Nawaz Sharif, is not just unwell but in jail, as is her daughter and son-in-law. All three are in danger, because Naeemul Haque is on the prowl, and not having found Daniyal Aziz, is still in search of a victim on whom to celebrate Imran’s victory.
I suppose the schools being attacked in Diamer district in Gilgit-Baltistan are not meant to celebrate the win. Everyone seems to be blaming militants, but still, when someone attacks schools so close to the end of the holidays, I’m suspicious. I think the students need checking. Just to rule them out, you see.