The mounting tension between India and Pakistan brought some encouraging changes on political and economic horizon of Pakistan. On the one hand, the pressures at the Line of Control brought all political parties together at one platform while on the other hand, the Pakistan Stock Exchange 100-index crossed 41,000 points for the first time in history dispelling the image that Pakistan cannot stand against the mighty India. Before this, Pakistan Stock Exchange (PSX) also witnessed a record surge in July, 2016 as the index climbed by 258.04 points, crossing 36,200.

There are two trends in Stock Exchange of any country; bullish and bearish. When the stock prices rise, it is called bullish trend and when the stock prices fall, the trend is bearish. The bullish trend seen in Pakistan Stock exchange was the outcome of All Parties Conference held on 3rd October, 2016. Secondly, Shanghai Stock Exchange showed interest in buying shares of Pakistan Stock Exchange. Shanghai Stock Exchange (SSE), which is one of the two bourses operating in China was interested in obtaining a substantial shareholding in the unified national bourse.

As the Pakistani bourse was in search of a strategic investor and in July invited companies to show interest in buying a stake of up to 40 per cent. As a result, some 17 companies have shown interest in buying shares of Pakistan Stock Exchange for which final short listing would be announced before the end of October. In addition to the SSE, a consortium of three financial institutions, which includes one of the leading stock exchanges of Europe and a local player, Pakistan-Kuwait Investment Company had also shown interest in purchasing a strategic stake in the PSX.

On political front, amid Indian aggression, false propaganda on surgical strike and media warfare, all political parties gathered keeping aside their differences and united on single point agenda that Indian belligerency is not acceptable to any political party. The joint declaration adopted by All Parties Conference resolved “the people, the government, the political parties and the armed forces of Pakistan are firmly united in supporting the Kashmiri people’s right to self-determination, as guaranteed to them in the UNSC resolutions”.

The salient features of the joint resolution were; a) Indian brutalities in Kashmir were condemned. b) International community was urged for the implementation of UN resolutions. c) Indian aggression was termed as threat to regional peace. d) Indian propaganda to shift the focus of IHK atrocities through false claims of cross border terrorism was rejected). Indian designs to scuttle diplomatic efforts was regretted. f) Indian intent to use water as weapon was condemned.

It was the need of the hour that a unanimous message by the representatives of all political parties to be sent to the enemy. Unity was inevitable. This was the second time that all political parties were united on a national agenda. In December 2014, All Parties Conference was called to resolve national plan to defeat terrorists and terrorism. As a consequence, National Action Plan was devised. There is general acceptance that terrorist activities have been reduced and Zarb-e- Azb is the most successful military operation of this world. In contrast to previous APC 2014, APC 2016 aimed at defeating the external enemy while the former aimed at defeating the internal enemy. The internal enemies are those who are difficult to recognize and trace while the external enemy is openly posing a threat to the existence of the country. It is essential to de root both enemies for the sake of peace and security in the country. The external enemy of Pakistan i.e. Hindu Taliban is much stronger than the internal enemy. The leader of Hindu Taliban Modi is being criticised for his atrocious activities in Kashmir, brutal killing of Muslims in India and hardliner policy on Kashmir.

At this point when the whole country was passing through a volatile security situation and the politics of agitation by PTI on Panama leaks and Tehreek e Qasas by Qadri and ANP’s politics of agitation with reference to western route of CPEC were underway, the holding of such a conference was a big achievement on part of government of Pakistan. All parties realised that the survival of the country comes first and the rest comes later. It also dismissed the image of disunity on national issue. Difference of opinion on all political, social and economic matters is the right of political parties but when it is the issue of national interest, these differences are forgotten.

The step taken by the government and the positive response of opposition parties is no doubt encouraging and a ray of hope for the people of Pakistan but amidst moments of happiness and unity, the PTI leader again has shown immaturity by announcing that it would not attend the joint session of parliament and once again he threatens to lock down Islamabad after Muharram. The non-serious attitude of Imran Khan has already not only crippled his vote bank but has damaged the country economically, socially and politically. Though he did not participate in the All Parties Conference but his party was well represented by Shah Mehmood Qureshi and Shireen Mazari. Now his decision not to participate in Parliament’s joint session speaks of his typical attitude of revolt against the system. At this point when army and all political parties are united on internal and external front, PTI’s revolt is incomprehensible, especially when the joint session of parliament is called for the Kashmir cause. Imran’s boycott signifies he is not endorsing Pakistan’s policy on Kashmir. It also means that he is united with anti-Pakistan forces. He repeatedly gives deadlines to the government but has no clear policy framework. His workers are groping in darkness without knowing their fate. He should stop playing with the sentiments of party worker for this childish behavior does not suit to the leader of Pakistan’s third largest political party.