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Reimagining Pakistan

Pakistan has been in a state of constant turmoil since its creation. Many civilian and military leaders came and acclaimed to bring change and improve public policy making better than the previous ones, but no one was able to put these claims into action. Now, the country is in an unannounced anarchy situation not only due to default risk but also due to ongoing political instability. The government-opposition collision and default risk have given rise to an air of dejection among the public. And now to revive the hope in public, several known politicians, ex-ministers, administrators and ex-bureaucrats have come forward and organized a self-proclaimed unbiased forum known as ‘Reimagining Pakistan’.  The forum includes Ex-prime Minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi, Ex-Finance Minister Miftah Ismail, Ex-minister Mustafa Nawaz Khokhar, former principal secretary Fawad Hassan Fawad and many more.

Pakistan’s economy is in a downward spiral.  The reserves are very low. The inflation rate has jumped to 30%. The country is at risk of default. Moreover, the political situation is extremely destabilized. The government and opposition are at loggerheads with each other. Two big provinces are working under a caretaker government. Imran Khan’s cases and rallies, and the government's undemocratic tactics to delay the elections have pushed Pakistan into the dark ages. The parliament where decision making, law making and policy making should be topmost priority, has no space left for legislation. Both PMLN and PTI are fighting on the streets. In all this chaos, the former legislators have come forward and made their own platform to discuss public issues. According to them, the ongoing politics in the country was not focusing on public issues but revolved around power struggle.

The main purpose of this platform is to make public officers rethink and re-evaluate their political, administrative, and policy-making strategies. Former Prime Minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi has called it a unity for economy forum and organized several seminars all over the country along with Miftah Ismail and Mustafa Nawaz Khokhar. He said “under this forum we will utilize our efforts to find solutions to various issues.” He also reminded that if the nation can defeat terrorism, then it can do it again. The nation needs debate to solve the issues because the status quo is failing. Ex-Finance Minister Miftah Islam during the seminar emphasized unity to highlight the issues of low literacy rates and rising poverty. He stated that the economy would not perform if half the population remains illiterate. He shared his ‘’10 pillars’ of development including increasing exports, improving law enforcement and reevaluating policy strategies. On the other hand, Ex-Minister Mustafa Nawaz Khokhar urged the nation to choose between “rotten thinking and piles of problems” or “the attempt to reimagine Pakistan and to awaken hope” for its future.  He said we need major reforms and long-term planning but none of our political parties is talking about these reforms.

Miftah Ismail has been writing multiple articles on economic issues and offering solutions since his forced resignation in order to bring Ishaq Dar back on the ground. He has also shared many western economical solutions. Abbasi and Khokhar also attended multiple platforms to discuss their objectives in order to awaken the nation. But the question is, Will it work? Pakistan has always been in a state of uncertainty. Many times, we have seen exceptional coalitions between parties with opposing ideals and agendas, to unite the country and improve its political and economic situation. However, nothing changed. All these dissident politicians are expected to fight for elections independently. But will they be able to turn the tables? It is not that Pakistan is unable to produce politicians who want to make revolutions. The problem is implementation. Lack of actions towards their words has brought Pakistan to the brink of uncertainty and anarchy

Now, this political movement has also questioned the claims of these former public office holders that they were all unable to make their respective parties rethink and remake the policy strategies? If yes, then we can say it is a forward block in the Pakistan Democratic movement itself which was made to stand for democracy. Miftah’s decision to fight the election independently, Abbasi’s soft approach to dialogue with establishment and opposition, and specially their initiative to start national debate on the country's issues has made many media speculations that maybe there is a new political party that is going to launch soon but Miftah denied it.

The debate on this new political movement has given a new road to Pakistan’s politics. But will all these dissident politicians be able to bring the revolution that they are up to? The initiative is undoubtedly a good decision to make the nation reevaluate the same issues of the country that they have been facing since 1947. The urge to insist the nation rethink the main problems behind the political and economic instability will push the people to think outside their political affiliations. These unobjective affiliations have bring Pakistan to this stage where the political differences are now hard to tolerate. Nothing has given Pakistan more damage than this lack of tolerance among the nation. This intolerance has made the leaders free of accountability.

But the implementation of the movement’s objectives will decide its destiny.  Lack of execution has always been a serious error of the Pakistani legislators. Politicians make a list of ideas, strategies and claims in front of the nation, but at the time of execution, nothing happens.  And lack of accountability always lets the politicians and dictators free of everything. Will these freethinkers who are on the mission of a revolution in this time of despair be able to make it happen, which they were unable to do during their time in power, that is the real question.  And from there, their future will be decided.

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Tags: Mustafa Nawaz Khokhar Shahid Khaqan Abbassi Pakistan's politics Reimagining Pakistan Miftah Ismail


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