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News Analysis |

Chairman of the Pakhtunkhwa Milli Awami Party, Mahmood Khan Achakzai has come out in full support of the prime minister, Nawaz Sharif. While addressing a press conference on Thursday he said that he will always uphold democratic values. He said that he and his party fully supported PM Nawaz because of undying commitment to democracy.

Achakzai, who has long been a critic of the Pakistan Army tried to equate this case with an effort on part of the establishment to topple the government.

The PM who is under dark clouds of scrutiny has been asked to step down after the JIT made some serious remarks about him and his family. While his opponents are jubilant, his supporters especially the members of the cabinet are defiant. The PM is neither resigning nor dissolving the assemblies. His envoys have hinted towards a grand conspiracy against democracy under the garb of accountability.

Read more:Panama case: Is Nawaz Sharif’s political career coming to an end?

Achakzai, who has long been a critic of the Pakistan Army tried to equate this case with an effort on part of the establishment to topple the government.He said that he will not support anti-state forces.”We are and will always be against Martial Law.” Corruption is country’s most dangerous disease, he added. However, he said that targeting Nawaz Sharif for the very disease is a political move.

Asma Jehangir in a Twitter thread called out the establishment and lamented selective accountability.

The seasoned batsmen

The flak received by Nawaz Sharif has been countered by ramping up efforts to link the Panama Case with a conspiracy hatched by the generals. Three vociferous opponents to the role of the military in Asma Jehangir, Javed Hashmi, and Mahmood Achakzai have clearly alluded to intrigues.

Read more:Are Javed Hashmi’s theatrics well-timed ?

Asma Jehangir in a Twitter thread called out the establishment and lamented selective accountability. While Javed Hashmi alleged that the JIT was dictated and the Supreme Court bows in front of the men in uniform.

Asma in one of his tweets said: “Moral of the story: when with the establishment you will not be touched but if you disagree your grandmom will also be investigated.”

She said that all must be held accountable to include the establishment, pointing out that only politicians are targetted while generals go scot-free.

No rift

Civil-military ties have remained more or less smooth despite some fissures which were papered over. Despite efforts, there are few takers of the claim that the Panama saga is a conspiracy. It is widely believed that the Army realizes the importance of avoiding an institutional clash given the very many threats faced by the country.

Read more:A rift that is not there!

The defiance is being perceived as him  trying to prefer the personal over the system. If anything, it is undermining his democratic traits which he so often talks about.

Pundits believe that it is wrong to attribute accountability with threats to democracy. It could be argued that this may be an attempt to turn the discourse away from the damning report. The three aforementioned figures have time and again ascribed all anti-corruption drives to nefarious and hidden agendas.

Read more: Resign for your own good sir!

What needs to be understood is that the strength of democracy lies in transparent accountability, to which only the PM can lend credibility. It is becoming increasingly evident that the PM, by not resigning is giving his opponents all that they need. The defiance is being perceived as him trying to prefer the personal over the system. If anything, it is undermining his democratic traits which he so often talks about.

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