Home Global Village Bilawal playing to the anti-Pakistan gallery: PTI senator

Bilawal playing to the anti-Pakistan gallery: PTI senator


News Analysis |

Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) Senator Faisal Javed Khan, while rebutting Pakistan People’s Party (PPP) Chairperson Bilawal Bhutto-Zardari’s recent allegations against his party has accused him of playing to the anti-Pakistan gallery.

The senator said that Bilawal was “busy portraying Pakistan in a negative light”. Khan went on to say that “Bilawal should be ashamed of trying to please anti-Pakistan elements.” He said that the PPP chairperson should tell the nation whose language he had been speaking.

The senator said that Bilawal should not forget that the PPP was a “thing of the past” since [the party’s] entire focus was on saving the “looted wealth” and its “foreign properties”. The comments came after the PPP chairperson demanded sacking of federal ministers who he claimed were allegedly associated with banned religious outfits.

The prime minister reportedly made it clear that anybody who challenged the writ of the state would not be spared. The PPP chairman’s allegations have been taken seriously by the ruling party for an important reason.

“They [the PTI] are not taking action against the banned organisations because they had been their allies in the last general elections. The groups were rebranded to help the PTI form government,” Bilawal had alleged.

The PTI after forming government had announced its resolve to implement the National Action Plan (NAP) in its letter and spirit. The government has so far banned some organisations and has also arrested several leaders and members of these outfits. Besides, several mosques and religious seminaries have been taken into the control of the state and will be regulated.

Meanwhile, Prime Minister Imran Khan during a meeting of the federal cabinet had also said that his government was taking action against banned organizations in the best national interest.

Read more: Bilawal cries foul: Asad Umar denies ties with banned outfits

The prime minister reportedly made it clear that anybody who challenged the writ of the state would not be spared. The PPP chairman’s allegations have been taken seriously by the ruling party for an important reason.

India has been lobbying to get Jaish-e-Muhammad (JeM) chief branded as a global terrorist in the United Nation Security Council (UNSC). Just a day before the voting at the highest international forum, the remarks by Bilawal were seen with suspicion by many Pakistanis.

Indian media also used Bilawal’s allegations to shape anti-Pakistan narrative at regional as well as global forums. Dr. Moeed Pirzada, a senior TV anchor, in his talk-show at GNN questioned why was it important to grill the government when it had India to face?

At a time when the US and India are unnecessarily putting pressure on Pakistan for what it has never done, leaders in Pakistan are expected to be careful while getting tough at government, argue political observers.

He also tweeted, “When Bilawal Bhutto was doing his press conference, many were surprised on his timings, but did not realize that he timed it with [the] vote in [the] UNSC Sanctions Committee; now most feel that he has exposed himself very badly, he now needs to change his advisors, they are destroying him”

Dr. Pirzada, for this also termed him an ”India-US spokesperson in Pakistani politics”.

“Bilawal’s press conference [was] very well-articulated, but unfortunately, left this unmistakable impression that he has decided to replace Nawaz Sharif as India-US spokesman in Pakistani politics – won’t work. Days for this strategy are over; fire your speech writers @BBhuttoZardari” he tweeted.

At a time when the US and India are unnecessarily putting pressure on Pakistan for what it has never done, leaders in Pakistan are expected to be careful while getting tough at government, argue political observers.

Mike Pompeo, the US secretary of state, has recently said that the USA wants Pakistan to do more. “Well, we’ve taken actions … against Pakistan that no other administration has taken. … We need Pakistan to do more. They have to stop harboring this terror. We saw what happened with India. The conflict that rose there as a result of terrorist that departed from Pakistan. … They need to stop harboring terrorists.”

Read more: PPP workers clash with police as Bilawal, Zardari arrive at NAB…

In a scenario, when the government is determined to take action against the banned outfits and India-US are putting pressure on Islamabad to do more, the demands of Bilawal seem politically motivated and an effort to push Pakistan into troubled waters. Political experts opine that the civilian leaders in the country need to be careful about the words they use and the context they are expressing their ideas in.