Tariq Kashmiri In the past few days, some journalists have been arguing, rather mourning, that the emergence of Imran Khan on the political map will only result in the division of the so-called anti-PPP vote. According to them, the sacred vote of the rightist parties when it gets divided brings PPP into power. Whatever may be the logic behind this argument, it is flawed from the very onset. Some of the readers might be thinking that I am a PPP jiyala, but please hold this thought for a minute and you will see my contention in proper perspective. As a matter of fact, this argument was put forward by the creators of IJI and we all know who they were. When all the gallant and chivalrous men of our country (in uniform or without) were scared of a weak and frail young lady, Benazir Bhutto, this theory was formulated. Every trick of the trade was applied and the desired results were achieved. Twenty-four years on, the best that the so-called defenders of our ideological boundaries could come up with is the same old argument. It shows abject poverty of thought, rather than competing and contesting on merit all they want to do is to form an alliance to oust the PPP. While the maternal uncles of Pakistan are busy in finding ways and means to stop the PPP from winning the next general elections, the Party is on course of self- destruction. Not a day goes by when there is no news about a new corruption scandal. The news of the failure of autonomous bodies, attached departments and other government functionaries are far from few. However, the most unfortunate experience of this PPP government is that they seem to be indifferent towards some of the very vital challenges faced by Pakistan. Agreed that they inherited a huge baggage of problems from the decade-long military rule, but what is most appalling is the fact that there is not even a thought to put things right. While it is evident that one of the major issues in the next elections will be that of governance, the PPP regime is not interested in any effort to deal with the issues. One-by-one the public sector corporations are defaulting and the PPP governments response to the problem is, 'post a notoriously corrupt person as head of the already fading organisation. Also, it is time now to break the myth that the PML-N is the sole custodians of the anti-PPP vote. First of all, there is no ideological distinction between the two leading political parties of Pakistan. Gone are the days when the PPP was the torchbearer of anti-establishment, anti-samraj politics in Pakistan. While the PML-N never had any clear ideology; no matter how vociferously they claim, it is hard to believe that they have revolted against the establishment. Shahbaz-Nasirs nocturnal rendezvous with the top brass is a case in point. Both parties have no clear economic agenda, foreign policy guidelines or governance features. As with the PPP, one can fault the PML-N on so many grounds; the reality is that there is no marked difference between the two parties. Those who believe that the PPPs vote bank is intact, or will remain unaffected, are living in a fools paradise. Imran, in his October 30 speech, very rightly said that this party is not Zulfikar Ali Bhuttos party anymore. The job that even Ziaul Haq could not do is being done by the present PPP leadership. Undoubtedly, the PPP will suffer badly in Punjab, Sindh and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa. It is not mere speculation; the omens are not good for the PPP. Their voters were either from the very poor segments of society, or liberal minded democrats, who want Pakistan to be a democratic, modern and pragmatic State. The leadership has failed its core support groups. They are now looking towards alternates; in Imran they see a ray of hope. The problems that Pakistan is facing today require a leader, who can inspire the masses. Who is charismatic enough to channel the energy of youth into meaningful and productive human resource? Imran has the personality, patience and charm to motivate people. I think it is time for the change of guards; the citizens of Pakistan are no longer ready to give another chance to the tested lot, we need a fresh start with no baggage. We need an honest man at the helm; our country cannot afford to take another chance with the corrupt, inefficient and incompetent lot. We need hope and we need change, those in doubt must remember that hesitation is not a trait required at the defining moments of history. May Allah save Pakistan from the coalition of robber barons The writer is a freelance columnist.