ISLAMABAD - The gridlock between the PML-N government and protestors of PTI and PAT at the Constitution Avenue is completing its first 40 days today and still there is no sign of any breakthrough. The protest goes on despite the fact that the government has accepted most of their demands thus setting many speculations in motion what actually is the agenda of the two parties.

Have they started their election campaign by maligning the government for its failure to do or not to do that they have been asking for. These are some of the basic questions that could be answered only by PTI and PAT leaders. Before going into speculations the sit-ins of PTI and PAT have generated and the new trend of protest they have created for others to follow, it is imperative to examine the dismal government strategy to handle the marches.

Primarily, it is the interior ministry, which should be blamed for the strategy. From the outset the government of Prime Minister Sharif remained in panic and left the matter to its powerful Interior Minister to handle it. Many believed that the Interior Minister should not have allowed the marchers mount on Islamabad.

He lost precious opportunity on the night of 30th August when he could have easily taken both Imran and Qadri in protective custody that would have greatly helped in easing the situation at the D-Chowk. The government also engaged the two leaders in talks but to no avail. There is no third party that could help resolve the crisis.

Legislators and the Executive branches of the state are on the same page while the higher judiciary and powerful Defence Establishment seem least interested in poking their nose into political matters. Rather they seem to have distanced themselves from the current political crisis leaving its burden to the Executive to bear alone.

The lengthiest joint sitting of the parliament also concluded on the weekend only with a routine resolution it passed reiterating its support for supremacy of the constitution. On the hand, this sorry state is heavily affecting government’s functioning and gradually weakening its grip on the affairs. The apparent government’s policy of restraint has been paying it off well till certain time but no more as it has been giving huge advantage to two parties in consolidating their ground positions.

This dilly dally approach of the government towards the protestors suggests as it appears as it’s shying away from using its executive authority to force the protestors to leave the area. Consequently, the PTI and PAT have resolved to continue their sit-ins even during the upcoming Eidul Azha as there is no face-saving opportunity for them.

Since both the parties have missed the conceived objective of kicking out the Sharifs from power, they are pulling on with their protest and also seriously contemplating on an option to restage their sit-in in Lahore. That would mean putting more pressure on the Punjab government, the grand objective of the two parties to keep on destabilising the PML-N government in Punjab in order to deny it any opportunity to take advantage in the local bodies polls in the province by further weakening its credibility before that happens.

Both the federal and the Punjab governments will have to devise a new and effective strategy to tackle the two parties before they ruin political future of the ruling party. PML-N will have to prove that it is still a largest political player in the Punjab before the duo could undo its politics.