Human are special, they criticize, reform, evolve and change constantly. Few people in Pakistan have got few,thirteen rather, reservations against Imran Khan & PTI. This article is actually a response to the article found at: http://www.incpak.com/editorial/pakistan-112-facts-pti-fans-wont-digest/I would suggest reading the original article first so that viewers can connect with all the arguments for and against.
Please keep in mind that the original article was written in Nov 2011, and later republished after review in April 2013.
1st criticism: “Support to Musharraf: Murdering Democracy?” – Imran Khan went against democracy when he supported Musharraf.
Response: “If someone can’t hear the apology, it’s because they don’t want to hear it”
Imran Khan has already excused publicly on media for supporting the referendum. He said he misunderstood Musharraf’s intentions on what he wanted for Pakistan in terms of democracy. Thus he left the cabinet, said sorry and moved on. There’s a controversy where Imran says that Musharaf offered him prime-minister ship and he rejected it. On the other hand, Musharraf rejects this notion. Either way, Imran held himself accountable by publicly saying he made a mistake. He had only 1 seat and he left.
2nd criticism: “Injustice to Tyrian & Sita White” – As Imran Khan didn’t appear before court, the court ruled that Tyrian is Imran’s child.
Response: Personal vs. Public issue, let courts decide on what is just & unjust Everybody has skeletons in his/her closet. Imran has denied paternity in this case. It’s a personal vs. public issue. I didn’t mind Bhutto sipping Chivas and Musharaf taking his fair share of Gin, I consider this thing pretty personal. As a leader, I’ll evaluate Imran on his stances on politics, economy, and affairs of the state and his plans on how to run Pakistan. Rest assured, Sita White-Tyrian case is supposed to be decided in the international courts, who have decided that Tyrian should have a name change just because Imran didn’t appear before the court because he
denies paternity. Yes, it’s okay to have reservations against a pending court case. Justice should prevail. It’s a legal issue let the courts decide based on facts. And any court decision can be challenged when & if required.
3rd criticism: “Support to TTP (Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan)” – Imran Khan is soft on TTP and terrorism -
Response: From “Taliban Khan” to “Taliban Zardari”, “Taliban Sharif”, “Taliban Kiyani” and “Taliban Obama” Since early 2009 Imran has been saying that we need to have political solution to USA’s War-On-Terror (WOT). Army Chief Kiyani came up with the press conference saying military has achieved its target and now it’s time for the political process to take control of the situation. Yet, no political process was proposed by any leader or party except Imran & PTI. Now the ex-govt (PPP & alliances), the opposition (PMLN & the rest) and stakeholders (USA)
etc. have started talks with TTP. Our solution is 1. Get Pakistan out of USA’s WOT 2. Exterminate concept of Jihad when there is no WOT & 3. Use people of Tribal belt to either settle or exterminate remaining divided Jihadi factions. These “talks” doesn’t mean we stand by what TTP has done or wants to do. “Taliban Khan” is now an outdated, refuted and illogical criticism. Either the critics have to accept that Imran is right or they have to call spade a spade by saying that since “talks” have begun, political giants of Pakistan (PPP, PMLN, Molana Fazal-urRehman etc.), Army & Gen. Kiyani, and USA & President Obama “support” TTP! Suit yourself.
4th criticism: “Alleged Connections with ISI” – Imran allegedly has connection with the ISI
Response: “The Merry-Go-Round of allegations”The best way to respond to “allegations” (i.e. associating a negative thing assertively without having any proof whatsoever) is by asking questions that the alleging party cannot answer:
1. Any documented proof revealing that Imran/PTI have any inside connection with ISI? Since there isn’t, it remains an “allegation”.
2. Hamid Gul represented his personal view or ISI’s stance when he wished for Imran Khan to enter politics?
3. If Imran was pursued to enter politics by ISI, does it also mean that it supported PTI throughout all these years?
4. If ISI’s Gen. Pasha was supporting PTI, was it his own inclination or ISI’s? Any documented evidence? And why has PTI still been so successful with its popularity, jalsas, youth attraction and voters after he was gone?
5. If ISI is so powerful and purpose of introducing Khan into politics was to govern the country on their terms, why has Imran & PTI struggled for 17 years? Either Imran is not supported by ISI, or ISI is a failure in Pakistan with zero power influence. Your call.
6. If ISI wants Imran as PM, why couldn’t they convince him not to boycott 2008 elections just like “they convinced” him to enter politics? And also why couldn’t they help him win elections of 97 & 2003? Especially 97 when he was a fresh national hero (92 world cup & SKMH). Either Imran has his own vision, or ISI has no power influence over him and in the country. Your call.
5th criticism: “Opposition to MQM –Archaic Now” – Imran doesn’t criticize MQM now.
Response: “Criticism archaic itself, who says MQM is forgone?” Imran was the one who filled a case against Altaf in England and fought it, not the government, not the opposition, only Imran & PTI. The UK court’s decision is another debate which requires legal knowledge. So I’ll leave it there. It’s a big misconception that Imran, PTI & their fans don’t criticize MQM. Imran is on record saying “MQM is a party of people representing the middle class” (natural alliance factor) but “they are unacceptable as long as they have the militant wing” (parting of ways). Criticism on target killings, ‘bhata-khori’ and overall situation in Karachi is still alive. We not only criticize but present a solution as well i.e. de-politicization of Police and strict impartial operation against culprits. There have been no seat adjustments between PTI & MQM and there will be none till the latter lets go of its militant wing. The argument that PTI doesn’t criticize MQM is archaic itself. Author’s argument would have been much more constructive if question was raised why Imran & PTI criticize PMLN more than PPP & MQM. We’ll leave the response to this question for later when the real essence of original author’s article comes into the limelight.
6th criticism: “Contradicting Himself” – Imran’s words & actions don’t match -
Response: Actions speak louder than words Although I’m a PTI supporter I can point out better instances where he contradicted himself. This “induction of lotas” argument however is ironically a case of political maturity. Loads and all sorts of people joined PTI after 30th Oct 2011 Lahore Jalsa, some good some bad. Back then we had no way to formally gauge any individual’s integrity. Furthermore, true democracy cannot stop an individual coming in to PTI or any other party and leaving from PTI or any other party. But now we have a proper democratic process to filter people by the people for the people i.e. Intra-Party Elections. We let the people choose their leadership from basic ground level. This doesn’t in any way say that PTI is perfect. Few people have already left, some good some bad. Few people are still in PTI, some good some bad. We gave this democratic extensive intra-party election process its maximum course of 10.5 months in
the election year. Nonetheless, let us wait for the final list of PTI candidates who will be contesting for elections. I bet it’ll be the cleanest team of all. And regarding author’s question “Where did the fresh blood go?” please know that till now PTI has finalized 35 candidates in KPK, out of which 29 are new faces below 40 years of age or so with the final list possibly having youth candidates well above 25%. Nationally, 80% of total candidates will be new faces.
7th criticism: “Playboy for Islamic Republic” – Imran the playboy can’t be accepted in an Islamic state -
Response: Personal vs. Public, Past vs. Present and “Momin” for Corrupt Republic of Pakistan
It’s simply a debate of personal vs. public issue. No complications about it whatsoever. If Imran was a playboy it’s a personal act on which God Himself will judge him. If Imran needs to apologize, he needs to apologize to his God, neither me nor anybody. Because it’s his personal relation with his God and God will surely judge him. Yes, but when the country and its people were involved (e.g. Musharaf’s Referendum) he apologized. And if he gets involved in corruption or any other wrong-doing where people of Pakistan get affected in a negative way by his direct actions, he’ll still apologize. Let’s see the dilemma. If there’s a near-to perfect leader & administrator with
some personal issue from the past, and there’s a near-to worst leader & administrator but prays 3 times a day. What kind of a leader do you want? For me it isn’t a dilemma at all. Lastly I have got two questions in this section:
1. Any case of new playboy scandal after 1996? (if the answer is “No” then the answer to 2nd question is surely “No”)
2. Any case where this playboy-ish approach conflicted with his ability to lead PTI and his will to make Pakistan better through democracy or politics?
8th criticism: “Artificial Rivalry – Lets Attract the Media” – Imran only criticizes PMLN to attract media, he can’t prove corruption by PMLN because Musharraf couldn’t. PMLN corruptions are just allegations.
Response: Defining corruption, coming to terms with reality and the never ending PTI vs. PMLN war
Corruption not proven doesn’t mean corruption didn’t happen. The problem in Pakistan is three tiered:
1. What is the definition of corruption?
2. What are the legislations against corruption?
3. How to take out corruption?
I give full credit to Sharifs for always twisting the law instead of doing direct corruption. Few are some examples:
1. Corruption through misuse of laws and legislations – Approx. Rs. 4 billion bank loan was about to be defaulted by Nawaz Sharif & his family members in 1998. He declared that banks can take possession of assets. Complications arose when Miraj Din (Sharif family member) took stay order as was partner. The case has been and still is pending to be cleared in Lahore High Court for 15 years. Sharif family is now demanding the 9 banks to reimburse them with approx. Rs. 3.5 billion because value of property has increased. We respect law, high courts and Supreme Court. It’s a legal case and let the courts decide. But I can’t turn blind eye to a case just because it’s pending for 15 years.
2. Corruption through misuse of power – CBR’s Statutory Regulations & Orders (SRO) has been a question mark for so long, where Sharifs used it to build industry at their own will apart from using policies of tax & duty exemptions. This doesn’t mean that other politicians didn’t use SRO.
3. Corruption in formation of 1990 government – The Asghar Khan case proves that 1990 elections were rigged “vested interest groups” and beneficiary was PMLN.
If the author doesn’t ideologically consider these cases as examples of corruption, it’s his point of view which is not shared by Imran, PTI, me and all the followers. Author’s argument of Imran “initiating backdoor contact with Musharraf, PMLQ & MQM” is pretty absurd, considering that PTI is still having a solo flight. Punjab has 57% (approx. 49 Million) of all registered voters in Pakistan, 54% (183) National Assembly Seats and 51% (371) Provincial Assembly Seats. PTI is going to keep on criticizing PMLN and PMLN is going to keep on feeling the heat and will continue to complain about the hit to its vote bank. PMLN should appreciate when Imran says “PPP’s ship has been sunk by its own leader, Zardari” because that gives a hit to PPP vote bank.
9th criticism: “Let’s accept Imran Khan: But wait… Where is The Team?” – Ok Imran is a leader but he has no team.
Response: “Team of Electables” vs. “Action plans by PTI Team”
Let’s wait for the final list of PTI candidates contesting elections, till then the criticism is baseless. I hope others parties can accomplish 25% youth candidate %age let alone beat that of PTI. For others “team” may mean “electables”, for us it doesn’t. We not only have thorough policy framework for Pakistan, but it is backed by facts,figures and uncompromising research. Take our criticism on corruption for example. You can find 148 page document containing research on corruption in 18 different countries and how they approached the eradication of it. We have a tailor-made solution to corruption that suits Pakistan’s demographic, legislative and institutional needs. Do others have it? We are looking to strengthen the industry through skill development based on facts and
findings, not just by decreasing the ratio of tax to GDP using Statutory Regulations & Orders (SROs). Does anyone else have a factual action plan? Same is the scenario for Education. We made this possible through integrity, systematic thought processing, thorough preparation and research and the most important of all “team efforts”. Promising only 18 or less ministries doesn’t mean we don’t have a team, it means we are already methodically prepared and know that 18 can do the work of 60. We also know it as a fact that we don’t want to be a “team” of closely connected siblings, family members and innumerable alliances. The problem is with the definition, not facts.
10th criticism: “Hide It – Win It: Who presented land for Shaukat Khanum?” – Sharifs donated land of SKMH andPTI cannot respond to this.
Response: Act appreciated; if you want credit for the institution then don’t discredit the institution
The author states that the land for SKMH Lahore was given by the then Chief Minister Punjab Mian Shahbaz Sharif. Sure, if that’s the case then let’s appreciate the then institutions of Punjab Govt and CM for this act. Act appreciated! Keep in mind that it wasn’t a personal donation, it was a government owned land, so please don’t go so far in declaring Shahbaz Sharif as the angel behind all the success of SKMH. Also, please don’t hurl unsubstantiated criticism against SKMH (which PMLN does so often and failed at it repeatedly) because Shahbaz Sharif was involved in it. If you ask for credit then don’t discredit the institution. Don’t contradict yourself. It’s leading you nowhere, brings about criticism on you rather than political point scoring.
11th criticism: “Vote for PTI – Welcome to Zardari for another 5 years!” – If people vote for PTI, Zardari will come back into power again.
Response: “Zardari – the fear card! 2008 angel & 2013 devil”This is the most absurd argument I have ever heard in terms of how much an individual’s vote matters. Let’s address the issues. Would urge everybody to answer these questions as stated:
1. According to author if I vote for PTI, Zardari will come into power once again. Thus I should vote for PMLN. If I do so, can it be called an ideological vote? Move to Question 2 if the answer is Yes or May-be. If it’s a No, then you should know that PTI supporters support PTI because of ideology.
2. Author says “PTI cannot in any case steal out all the vote bank, or even major part of it”. So this means PTI isn’t a threat, right? Move to Question 3 if the answer is yes. If it’s a No then move to Question 4.
3. If PTI isn’t a threat, what’s all the fuss about in voting PTI? The argument that Zardari will come in power again becomes baseless and I can easily uphold my ideology and vote for PTI.
4. If PTI is a threat, but only a normal one, then PMLN & PPP should have nothing to worry about. Please move back to Question 2 and rephrase the statement to “It doesn’t matter whether Zardari can come to power again because of PTI’s existence, we just don’t want people to vote for PTI”. Move to 5.
5. If PTI is a threat, a great one, then what method of quantification have you used in your research that makes you think PTI cannot achieve more than PMLN & PPP? If you have no facts and figures of all approx. 86 million registered voters in upcoming elections of 2013, then please move back to Question 2 and rephrase your entire statement & argument by saying “PTI is a big threat, and PMLN isn’t sure whether it can win more seats than PPP & PTI”. Move to 6.
6. Last but not the least; since author mentions Zardari as a fear, he must be pointing out at all the evils of last 5 years to which I agree. Then please ask Nawaz Sharif to accept that he made a mistake by
supporting Zardari all these years. Thus, please don’t hail yourself as “champions of democracy” and “preventers of system derailment”, infact take the due heat and accept that PMLN and/or Nawaz Sharif brought more evil than good to this country in last 5 years. Either say “Zardari isn’t evil” and let go of this argument or say “Zardari is evil” and face the argument against PMLN’s support to Zardari. Suit yourself.
12th criticism: “The Political ‘Dhobi Ghaat’: PTI” – PTI thinks that any corrupt politician that enters PTI becomes clean
Response: “Urdu translation of democratic intra-party-elections is “dhobi ghaat”?”
Author states PTI as “Political Dhobi Ghaat: A place where old faces are provided with new identity”. Does he mean that PTI has a proper democratic process of intra-party-elections in place where people decide who should be given “new identity” and who shouldn’t? And what about the circuitous argument that every entrant into PTI is evil, every exigent just got “revelations” on what PTI actually is, and every entrant into PMLN is an angel? Is it Dhobi-Ghaat of its own where intra-party-election lasted for only 2 days? We respect those who leave because of their own reason, regardless of whatever it is. Shireen Mazari left and Shafqat Mahmood said “Shireen Mazari is an
ideological woman and we respect her differences with us on ideology”. Masood Sharif Khattak left PTI and Imran said “It’s his decision, I cannot comment but I will say one thing, I wish that each day was of 48 hours instead of 24”. Please note that I stand against any personal troll-type criticism against people leaving PTI. When people join PTI, they are asked to go through the whole process and come to terms with the filtering procedure. It’s a system. Our people make a system which in turn works on the people (previous, new & future) without the system having the bias of people. It’s a structured and organized system!
13th criticism: “Dear PMLN: Resign, though I won’t” – Imran always demanded that PMLN should resign from Parliament, but PTI members didn’t resign from their assembly seats
Response: Dear PMLN: We resigned, why didn’t you?
The reason why Imran & PTI in 2011 repeatedly made demands of PMLN to resign was because PMLN constituted
a big chunk of the coalition/opposition (as compared to those MNAs who joined PTI) and if it resigned, there would be no other option but to have elections, which would have benefited the country by stopping the on-going full-on-throttle corruption. At the same time Shahbaz Sharif was cheering the crowds with “Go Zardari Go” & “Zar Baba Challis Chor”.
That being said please recheck the facts and state the following:
1. Which MNAs entering into PTI didn’t resign from parliament before joining PTI?
2. Which MNAs entering into PTI didn’t resign after they joined PTI?
3. Please name those individuals who are PTI members and hadn’t resigned before dissolving of parliament? There’s hardly a name at the end of Question 3. And there would be none when final list of candidates is shared.
And PTI MNAs did this even though they weren’t enough in numbers to ensure dissolution of government followed
up by elections.
Author: Rafay A. Kazi
Intro: Writer is a LUMS graduate working in a MNC who is interested in political activism and writes on issues related to Pakistan’s politics.
Disclaimer: Writer’s views are in no way related or representing the view-points of PTI and/or his organization.
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