The two dharnas in the Federal Capital have breached their dykes and flooded the country. The PTI public meetings in Karachi, Lahore and Multan have set a new trend, which appears to have become infectious. The last two of these meetings were enormous in size, and the fact that the participants (which included families) were there of their own free will was exemplary. The Multan event ended a regrettable tragedy, wherein lives were lost due to a stampede as the stupendous crowd rushed to exit the venue.

There followed the usual flurry of media reports and talk shows with accusations and excuses flying back and forth. One side blamed the Government and the District Administration, while the other held the PTI responsible for what happened. No one put the blame on the public, which was equally responsible for the incident. If this would have been a civilized society, no matter how restricted the exits or how few the gates, people would have lined up and waited to get out in an orderly manner. The Pakistani Nation however, is blessed with an inexhaustible stock of indiscipline and lack of patience, where everyone converges on a single point like a herd of raging bulls to be the first ones out, oblivious of consequences.

I had indicated in an earlier column that the prevailing public mood of disillusionment with the Government is generating panic waves in the two dynasty oriented political parties. This panic is aggravated because of the large scale switching of workers and ‘jialaas’ to PTI and Pakistan Awami Tehreek. I know of at least a score of my acquaintances, who were ardent supporters of the present regime, but who now regularly attend the PTI sit in at Islamabad.

However vehemently anyone within PPP and PML N may deny it, the panic is now becoming more and more evident in knee jerk and reactive decision making that is coming from the respective party leadership. Take for example, the launching of Mr. Bilawal Bhutto Zardari’s political career in the ‘jalsaa’ in Karachi. In my considered opinion, this event is premature as the young man in question is not mature enough nor suited for Pakistani politics, which demand a commanding and Machiavellian nature to successfully handle the feudal structure of our system.

On the PML N side, the panic is manifesting itself in what appears to be status quo or put more bluntly ‘decision paralysis.’ The Prime Minister’s apathetical inability to start the process of electoral reforms is beyond comprehension. If action towards this end had been initiated and initiated with gusto, it would have diluted in part, the momentum that the two agitating parties are building up. Add to this the continuing power shortages, price hikes and absence of good law enforcement, and what one sees is the type of response that PTI and PAT are getting.

Involvement of PML N legislators and portfolio holders in corruption scandals and their exposure on private television channels is acting as a catalyst vis a vis the deteriorating situation. The fact of the matter is that the popularity graphs of the ‘brothers in power’ is taking a severe beating, leading to a point where the only options left for them are resignations and midterm elections.

Before I wind up this week’s piece, I must put down a few lines with reference to our apex judiciary. I am beginning to see the wisdom in the eerie calm and silence that prevails in the Supreme Court in spite of frantic calls for help and intervention. It appears that our Honorable Members of the Bench have decided to restore the dignity of their institution after a deluge of controversial suo moto cases initiated by the former Chief Justice. In other words, perhaps our courts are waiting for members of the civil society to initiate cases, so that the Judges can speak through their judgments.

 The writer is a freelance columnist.