Imran Khan while addressing his first big show in Karachi said that he was proud of the worker who sold his mobile to bear expenses to travel and participate in IK jalsa. Such are the people who helped him develop a momentum of change but the same landed in the hands of electables.
Gul Badshah, the PTI candidate for Peshawar NA-1 (by-elections) in 2013 was defeated on the seat won and vacated by PTI Chief, Imran Khan himself. This was the turning point when Imran Khan was advised of fielding electables instead of ideological workers.
And during the next 5 years, the electables entered PTI en masse gathered and transported by the biggest of Electables, Jahangeer Tareen who got himself at the driving seat, leading the parliamentarians who are always switchable to any party.
Though this has led to Imran Khan becoming the PM with a slim majority, the change seems unchangeable now.
Left with only electables as his governing team, the effects of status quo and lethargy start to trickle down. The other day, I happened to meet a die-hard worker of PTI who was complaining that they were working seamlessly from morning to late night for the upcoming by-election of Karachi 249 vacated by Faisal Vowda and a federal minister, who remains busy in other activities in the day time, seeks them to come online at midnight to brief him about the day’s activity as if the workers are his personal servants.
Hard facts of life
On the other hand, the life of commoners goes on. One Ahmed (the first name is not mentioned on his wish) obtained a loan of Rs. one Lac from Standard Chartered Bank in the year 2013 and because of loss of job became unable to pay installments.
However, the bank constantly followed him to pay off, and finally, he paid off the arrears of mere 29000/= this year (2021) after 8 years and now trying to get his name cleared from possible inclusion in the defaulter’s list maintained by State Bank.
On the contrary, a few bigwigs have obtained millions of loans and later got them waived off and on top of it, a few are on respectable public posts.
In July 2020, one Qadeer, a resident of Waryam village of Zafarwal, Narowal, Punjab poisoned his three kids before committing suicide himself over the inability to buy new clothes for kids on Eid.
Yet another event happened in Bahawalpur in early April 2021 when one Nadeem was not able to get his ill wife treatment, having accumulated 3 months house rent apart from Electric bill of 17,000/= and nothing to eat, said to have committed suicide himself and wife after poisoning two kids.
Across the border of poverty, in the circles of rich mafias, the Sugar industry is hardly seen as a business. It is actually pocketing billions of Rupees of public money through manipulating subsidies that’s why most of the sugar mill owners are rulers.
Another menace that has been caused by the sugar business is that the land meant for cotton growing was converted for sugarcane, by transforming whole of South Punjab landscape, resulting in a scarcity of cotton in the country which is now is to be imported.
Worthwhile to mention that Pakistan has remained number 5 in cotton producing countries and in terms of per person ratio of cotton production, Pakistan has remained number one in the world.
Read more: Government policies failing cotton industry
The defining moment
IK who as a captain did not let even Cricket Board Chairman in the cricket team dressing room and is known for even replacing his father from the top post of Shaukat Khanum Hospital with a meritorious man, is now surrounded by stalwarts of the status quo.
This is the defining moment, if the IK “the Reformist” wins, it can change the fate of the country and if IK “the PM only” wins, the change is a far cry.
Through electables, one may become the PM but never the Reformer Imran Khan constantly boasts of. It’s not the electables helping one becoming the PM rather its the other way round. It’s the electables seeking a platform for themselves to be elected by getting potential party’s tickets.
The electables are now all converging to resist an inquiry that is not related to politics. Business is always welcome, however, transferring billions without tax can never be spared and should be taken head-on as the PM is doing now.
Stay firm Imran Khan, electables will be the first hurdle to be removed and the rest follow.
Mushtaq Jumma is an Ex-Airliner and Business Consultant. The views expressed in this article are the author’s own and do not necessarily reflect the editorial policy of Global Village Space.