LAHORE - Prime Minister Imran Khan is incessantly being criticised by his opponents for his ‘she’ remark about PPP Chairperson Bilawal Bhutto Zardari.

It would have been better if he had not used this word for his rival who is so junior to him and who needs all such opportunities that help him stay in the much needed limelight.

But Imran Khan is not the first leader who used such an adjective for someone working against him.

It was during Ayub regime in the 60s when then information minister Ahmed Saeed Kirmani made some comments about Zulfikar Ali Bhutto, who was opposed to the then government.

Bhutto came to Lahore and journalists asked him a question about Mr Kirmani’s remarks. “Who is she?” asked Bhutto, triggering an uncontrollable laughter.

Ahmed Saeed Kirmani was the father of Dr Asif Kirmani, now a PML-N Senator and a close aide to former prime minister Nawaz Sharif.

It was also Mr Bhutto who called a respected leader Air Marshal Asghar Khan “Aaloo (Potato) Khan” and another bulky senior leader Khan Abdul Qayyum Khan as “Double Barrel Khan”.

In the election campaign for the 1977 elections, the Air Marshal had said he would hang Mr Bhutto at the Kohala Bridge in Kashmir.

It was also Mr Bhutto who used to call Syed Abol Aala Maudoodi as the Pope of Ichhra (Lahore).

Political leaders use various adjectives for their opponents to please voters and win their sympathies.

The comment made by Railways Minister Sheikh Rashid about Bilawal on Thursday after the prime minister’s was more biting. “If there is no technical fault in Bilawal, the premier’s remark should not be made an issue,” he said.

He has repeatedly addressed Mr Bilawal as “Billo Rani”, which is also like a ‘she’ remark.

It may be relevant to recall here that it was also Mr Sheikh who conferred the title of Mr 10 Percent on Mr Zardari during the first Benazir Bhutto rule.

When Nawaz Sharif was the Punjab chief minister and Benazir was in power at the centre, Sheikh Rashid advised him “Mian Sahib Tun Kay Rakho” (Mian Sahib, give her a tough time).

Regrettably, there are many who for reasons best known to them call MMA President Maulana Fazlur Rehman as Maulana Diesel.

After the 2018 elections the politicians have started using more derogatory words for their rivals.

For example, MNA Rana Sanaullah Khan, who remained Punjab law minister during the PML-N rule, has repeatedly called Sheikh Rashid as Shaitan (Devil) of Rawalpindi. He does not control his tongue even during live TV interviews.

His remarks about federal minister Chaudhry Fawad Hussain are more insulting. He calls him “Dabboo” of Jhelum, something the Punjabi-speaking people can understand better.