Social media is rife with a report that has somehow not been picked by our media. If the narrative is true then we appear to have missed not only an important news item, but a window to expose the enemies of Pakistan. According to reports, the Indian Defense Attaché in Kabul was recently recalled for raping an Afghan girl, who visited him for completing formalities connected to an education scholarship. The quiet manner in which the entire affair was handled, including the fact that it was kept out of Afghan and International Media, can indeed be termed as ‘impressive’. It also raises two question marks relating to foreign press reporting and ethics. First, did the international press ignore the incident because the perpetrator was an Indian and second, would Afghan and International media reaction been the same if such an abuse had involved a Pakistani embassy official?

Having got that off my chest, let us turn to our own disorderly house. Having undergone a controversial surgical procedure related to his heart, our Prime Minister continues to rest and recuperate in the United Kingdom, away from the heat (both natural and political) of his native land. While I understand the necessity of such a rest after ‘open heart surgery’, one of my more skeptical (or perhaps witty) friends has termed our Chief Executives absence as ‘Self Exile’, notwithstanding my assertion that the gentleman was seriously considering his return home, before the situation reached a point of no return.

So far so good, but what if the decision to return is already too late in the light of affairs that have reached a point where, unless substantial concessions to Opposition demands are given, we may well see political players taking to the streets. If this happens it will be nothing short of a nightmare with consequences, the responsibility for which, will lie squarely on the shoulders of the Ruling Party.

There are also whispered rumors that on return to Pakistan, the PM is likely to make an early announcement regarding appointment of an important slot in one of our most credible institutions. I can only hope that this is not done unilaterally, in violation of accepted tradition and in indecent haste.

The best way to gauge the pulse of the nation is to sup with the man in the street, chat with a shop owner or get the latest from the man driving public transport. I have interacted with all three and continue to do so, taking mental notes to help me in assessing popular sentiment. Regretfully the PML-N leadership appears detached from reality to the extent that it is turning a blind eye to prevailing public opinion, which appears to have substantially swung against the Party. It is now being openly said that the country will witness a change before the end of the current year. What this change will be, should be better left to the time, when and if it occurs.

Whatever be fact or rumor, the PM should not tarry anymore in the cool London climate and must return immediately, so that he can take over affairs from the current custodians, who appear totally at sea. It is up to him to take a decision whether he wants to go down in history as a politician, who sacrificed personal and family interest for the sake of larger national good or he desires to be remembered as another name amongst the long list that has looted and plundered Pakistan to bankruptcy.

Just as I was closing this week’s piece, I was stopped in my tracks by the breaking news about the high profile daylight kidnapping in Karachi. While our prayers are with the effected family, the case reflects the apathy that prevails amongst police in Sindh. I am forced to say this because of reports that this law enforcement arm initiated response almost four hours after the incident. If a high profile case such as this, elicited such tardy reaction, then a common citizen falling victim to a street crime can expect no redressal whatsoever from those sworn to provide succor and protection. The incident is another addition to the long list of charges against the provincial government and brings into sharp focus, the question of its moral right to continue in office.

Did the international press ignore the incident because the perpetrator was an Indian and second, would Afghan and international media reaction been the same if such an abuse had involved a Pakistani embassy official?