The Pakistan Democratic Movement (PDM) has formally been given permission to hold a jalsa on October 16, 2020, in the city’s Jinnah Stadium. The permission was given after the Gujranwala District Administration and the PDM reached a 28-point agreement on how the jalsa would be held.
The agreement states that all coronavirus SOPs will be strictly implemented throughout the jalsa, and that attendees will not enter the jalsa venue without masks and sanitizers.
The organizers will also have to install walk-through gates and sanitizers at the entrance and exit gates of the venue. Cars will be allowed to be parked at a distance from the venue of the jalsa. The PDM will arrange lighting at the venue and ensure there is no display of weaponry or fireworks at the venue.
The seating arrangements will have to be such that there is a 3-6 feet distance between the attendees at all times.
The PDM has also been told that none of its leaders are to make speeches at any place other than Jinnah Stadium, and there will be no ‘welcoming camps’ at GT Road.
The two parties have also agreed that there will be no wall-chalking/graffiti in relation to the jalsa, and that party banners will be put up after securing permission from the relevant departments.
Read More: Khan’s idealism or JKT’s realism?
The district administration has also secured guarantees that the speeches being made will not target any national security institutions or make any statements that may conflict with the Constitution.
In case of the violation of the agreement, the district administration will be entitled to take appropriate action and register cases against the PDM leaders
Can opposition topple Khan’s government?
Political analysts and experts are now deliberating over an intriguing question; can the opposition topple PM Khan’s government? Hasan Askari Rizvi, a political analyst who served as a senior official during the 2018 polls, said during a talk-show on Dunya TV that “the movement will likely involve more rhetoric than action”. Dr. Rizvi was of the view that the opposition parties won’t be able to stay united as many of them have “competing and contradictory interests”.
There is also an opinion that the opposition is likely to fail due to an obvious that it has no anti-government plan. “The opposition will not be able to sell out its narrative. Khan’s government has a success story when it comes to the Foreign Relations, it has an exemplary performance when it comes to defeating COVID-19, and Khan’s speeches at the UN made him a hero,” a senior bureaucrat told GVS. The officer was of the view that the opposition could set the agenda on high inflation but that is insufficient to shape an anti-government narrative when the current government seems to have done more than its capacity.
Read More: Shehbaz Sharif fails to present himself before NAB
However, sources in PML-N and PPP claim that the unprecedented rate of unemployment and inflation is enough to topple the government. Notably, due to structural challenges, Khan’s government failed to have a check and balance over the prices of wheat and oil. The opposition appears to capitalize on the same.