The Pashtun Tahaffuz Movement (PTM) is gaining momentum throughout the country. What started as a rising against the injustices in the system has taken a very bad turn. As citizens of a country, everyone has the right to peacefully protest and put forth their claims to the concerned authorities. This movement was about discrimination against a particular people and the inherent marginalisation, which stops their growth within the system. The fact that the authorities felt the need to arrest individuals related to PTM and several disappearances of important figures are being reported as well, this creates a sense of uncertainty in the minds of average Pakistanis watching this drama unfold.
Mainstream television channels and media outlets are not reporting and covering the activities of the group. Their only medium to interact with the rest of Pakistan and to keep them updated is through social media. This further strengthens their narrative of being sidelined and ignored by the system. History stands witness to how grievances, if not heard, get to the point of no return.
It is imperative that the government finds a feasible solution to the given situation. As the governing bodies, they are legally required to aggregate the interests of all the parties in the system. We have already witnessed the result of these initial arrests and media blackout. A larger national protest rally is being called next and hundreds will be participating in it because the call for grouping is not for any particular group, but for any and everyone who feels that the system in place is unjust to them.
Their call is especially against targeted extremism, which Pashtuns particularly feel victims of. This is a call which many groups can relate to and will prompt them to join the country wide protest. The best solution in this case would be to accommodate the group, listen to their demands and work on finding a feasible solution. We cannot keep on making the same mistakes over and over again by not shutting down the aggrieved groups. This cocktail of democracy and dictatorship will damage the system in the long run.