Jamiat Ulema-e Islam Fazal (JUI-F) Maulana Fazlur Rehman is trying to revive a grand opposition alliance on the basis of the ailing economy, the devaluation of the Pakistani rupee, and the growing inflation. This is not the first time Maulana has tried to join forces with both Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP) and Pakistan Muslim League Nawaz (PML-N) post the 2018 general elections. However each time his efforts have not resulted in a major breakthrough due to the tensions between PMLN and PPP. This time around the issue is the economy, which is a grave concern, however, the problem is that the opposition is also not participating in a dialogue which can help the government. Both PPP and JUI-F have made claims of toppling the government, which is against the democratic principles of the country. History should not be forgone when it comes to matters of opposition.

Pakistan has successfully completed two democratic regimes, while the third one is in process. If opposition parties want to have a say in the matters of economy, the proper channel for that is the parliament, where they have been staging walkouts since the new parliament was formed. Neither has this resulted in better coordination between the center and the opposition nor has any meaningful policy been devised as a result. Both PPP and PMLN at this point lack the leadership to lead such an alliance. The government itself engages in the blaming game, despite being in power for over nine months now. As an elected party, they have to work with other mainstream parties to improve the system, however, the narrative that the other mainstream parties are nothing but corrupt prevents any coordination whatsoever.

The statement given by Information Minister Fawad Chaudhry post former premier Nawaz Sharif’s telephonic contact with Maulana Fazlur Rehman was to alert the courts regarding Nawaz Sharif’s political activities. There is a dichotomy in the ruling party’s treatment with ousted leaders. While Jehangir Khan Tareen still graces the parliament with his presence and indulges in policy matters, the slightest of political activity by the former premier is termed inappropriate. There is no denying that mainstream parties exist beyond their leaders and have circles of influence. In order to create a balance, both ruling party and opposition parties need to work out their differences in the parliament because a grand opposition at this time can only stage protests, however, we have witnessed that protests do not facilitate the toppling of a government.