ISLAMABAD - Islamabad is set to ‘boil’ politically while the temperature falls down at the onset of winter.

The government is not taking the Azadi (liberation) March casually but is reluctant to hold a top-level dialogue with the opposition to find a middle way out.

The marchers are meanwhile moving non-stop and eyeing to reach Islamabad in time – on October 31 – to ‘expose’ the government and its ‘failed’ policies.

The lack of initiative for talks by both the sides is pushing Islamabad into uncertainty less than two years after the general elections.

Prime Minister Imran Khan is not ready to give an inch to the protesters and believes the opposition parties want to create hindrance in the implementation of government’s policies.

Last day, PM Khan had said the march organisers were scared of the successes of the government on the economic front. Terming the protest March a blackmailing tactic, the Prime Minister categorically stated that no amnesty will be given to the corrupt elements, no matter they hold the march or resort to any other “blackmailing.”

The Prime Minister, however, admitted the first year was difficult for the PTI-led government but “now the country is rapidly moving forward as a result of our policies.”

The premier referred the international institutions such as the World Bank and the Asian Development Bank which, he said, were acknowledging the reforms agenda of the government.

The Azadi March led by the Jamiat Ulema-e-Islam (Fazl) chief Maulana Fazlur Rehman has the support of the Pakistan People’s Party and the Pakistan Muslim League (Nawaz) which is good enough to pressurise the government.

A normal Pakistani government would have tried to engage the opposition or even attempted to divide them but PM Imran Khan is certain the opposition parties “lack support.” This proved wrong as the march started. The protest attracted thousands of activists who are expected to grow as they approach Islamabad.

PPP chief Bilawal Bhutto Zardari has already claimed that Prime Minister Khan’s time was over. He predicted: “Imran Khan will quit soon paving the way for good times. Imran Khan is not qualified for the job.”

PPP Vice President Senator Sherry Rehman said the people were tired of the government and its “anti-people” policies.

PML-N leader Ahsan Iqbal welcomed the court’s decision to grant bail to Nawaz Sharif for eight months. PML-N’s Javed Latif said the Azadi March was aimed to liberating to nation.

With the prospects of the dialogue shrinking, the chances of confrontational politics are growing. Even if the marchers go back after a demonstration and do not opt for a sit-in, they can always return.

A close aide of PM Khan said the premier knows the threats of the upcoming and future protests and would eventually use his best men to go for a dialogue with the opposition.

The government is hoping not to let Islamabad become a battlefield amid tensions with India and economic crises. Insiders said the government is ‘ready to give’ and calm down protesters. In another case, the nation should be prepared for a replica of 2014, when Imran Khan led a marathon sit-in.