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Imran Khan’s Conspiracy Myth: A Debacle – OpEd


An excellent critic of human psychology, Shakespeare, has aptly said, “There is nothing either good or bad but thinking makes it so.” John Milton further explains it as “The mind is its own place and, in itself can make a heaven of hell or a hell of heaven.” – 


The rising polarization in our society due to political differences is dividing people in such a way that each party proclaims to be righteous in its narrative shunning away the stance of the rivals. The flood of information available on social media these days is unhelpful in educating rather confusing the youth by aggravating the divide and this is an alarming situation for a under developing country like Pakistan. The dilemma is that unlike any healthy debate or academic discussion the verbal circumlocution is turning violent endangering the very norms and ethics of a society. In my humble opinion, we have reached this state of affairs due to reason that human development has never been the priority of the stalwarts of the country. As per internationally set standards a sane nation spends almost five percent of its annual budget on education and five percent on health for the better upbringing and grooming of its citizens whereas in the case of Pakistan both education and health budget never exceeded to 2.5 percent which is indeed a criminal negligence. The mental approach of our people is still below the belt and instead of taking the responsibility for correcting any mess they want some messiah to come and put everything in order.          

We also need to learn that the democratic political process requires a natural process and pick and chose formula on the basis of personal liking and disliking can be very hazardous for the whole political process. The political engineering is the refutation of the very philosophy of democratic process and even more contemptuous than dictatorship. This is unfortunate that most of our top brass political leadership has landed on parachute without any significance training at grass root level politics. They have no plan, no understanding of core issues, and no vision to reform and above all they have no art of team selection on merit but personal loyalty. Another factor we often ignore is we need to promote normal professionals instead of elevating celebrities, feudal and business tycoons in our politics because the experience has proven them narcissists who can compromise even the national security for their petty political gains.      

Imran Khan, has turned out to be a cultist-populist, or a messiah kind of a figure – someone who people follow without demanding too much evidence. Khan has proven himself to be the most selfish politician instead of displaying the spirit of a statesman which needed in these critical times and he has ended up being a charisma that people believed in because they were taught that everything else was sham. 

Although the PTI conspiracy narrative of foreign intrusion is nothing but a hoax articulated by intelligentsia as sham yet it is selling. Paradoxically now even Imran himself has deviated to use this narrative and has started targeting the election commission but the majority of his party workers still believe involvement of a foreign hand in removing him from the power. 

The National Security Committee which is the highest security forum of the country has repeatedly stated that there was no foreign involvement in dislodging Imran khan from PM House. It has become clear that this narrative was concocted to serve the nefarious political pursuits and to win the sympathy of the public. 


Khan did not stop but for his political interests he has engineered many controversies to put the whole parliamentary system, the judiciary, the security establishment and other state institutions on fire. He has leveled serious charges on the loyalty of his political rivals with the country in the name of keeping Pakistan’s foreign policy independent from interference. 

The incompetency and his party’s less-than-stellar performance is being covered under cheap slogans and narratives that entirely nothing to do with reality. The anti-corruption narrative of PTI has also not worked because there are many serious allegations on the corruption of PTI’s ministers and associates. One need only question why the PTI is frequently switching its narrative between ‘conspiracies’, ‘interference’ and ‘establishment’s mistake’ to understand that it is a smoke screen. Its real purpose is to stay in power by hook or by crook and for this they want early elections. Here again our PTI friends are mistaken that they can get majority in the assembly in result of these elections. 

In all this, the previously serving ambassador of Pakistan to America stand vindicated rather it was use of undiplomatic language for which due protest was registered to the US incharge of diplomatic mission in Islamabad. If one gives a read to the autobiography of Richard Nixon, the ex-president of America titled as “The Leaders” one can understand that use of undiplomatic and even derogatory language in diplomatic discussions is not an exception. Further, Pakistan is part of the capitalism which sets the prevailing economic, social and political order so when we have tied our knot with an international order the question of conspiracy loses its worth. To conclude, Khan’s conspiracy myth is nothing but a mirage and a debacle portraying a very bad impression of Pakistan as a state.  

*Asad Ali is an Islamabad based expert of South Asian Affairs   

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