Evaluating Imran Khan’s Government Performance – OpEd
By Asad Ali
Since the ouster of Imran Khan from the office of Prime Minister, Pakistan’s political situation is marred by several ongoing challenges. The country has been grappling with a range of issues, including economic instability, social unrest, and regional security concerns.
These issues have contributed to a tense political climate, with opposition parties and civil society groups calling for greater transparency and accountability from the government. The incumbent along with the support of other state institutions has been working to address these challenges through a series of reforms and policies.
During PTI’s government in 2018, there have been accusations of political corruption and misconduct, as well as allegations of political interference in judiciary and media. Imran Khan’s government had tried to undermine the independence of judiciary by exerting pressure on judges and interfering in court proceedings. His government filed illegal reference against sitting judge of apex court Justice Faez Isa. Imran Khan’s administration had been suppressing media freedom as well and cracking down on journalists who reported critically on his administration. In addition to this, his government was not being able to protect freedom of speech and press, which are fundamental to a healthy democracy.
Imran Khan and his party continues to criticize the government, blaming them for the current economic turmoil and causing political instability. However, facts on the ground tells us different story. Major chunk of the society had held Imran Khan responsible for the current economic crisis as his government was failed at governance front.
The incumbent government is engaging all relevant stakeholders to uplift the country economically as previous PTI’s government flawed policies derailed Pakistan’s economic progress. Likewise, Imran Khan blames incumbent collation government for his ouster from power and creating constitutional, economic and political crisis across the country. Since his ouster, Imran Khan’s PTI is staging agitations across the country in order to press the government for early elections.
There have been concerns about PTI government’s ability to address some of the pressing issues facing the country, such as economic instability, rising inflation, and unemployment. There have also been criticisms of his government’s handling of issues related to social justice and human rights, including the treatment of minority groups.
PTI’s government in 2018 had failed to uplift the country economically and politically. The party came to power for its tall claims of uprooting corruption from the society and punishing corrupt politicians. However, practically it has done nothing in this regard to bring back looted money of Pakistan. Seemingly, Imran Khan’s cabinet minister were involved in corrupt practices as well. There were different reports of embezzlements in government sectors during PTI’s tenure. Malam Jabba case in Swat district of Khybar Pakhtunkhawa and BRT Scandal in Peshawar were major cases against PTI government in the province.
At economic front, Imran Khan’s government failed miserable in providing relief to the people of Pakistan. The inflation rate was skyrocketing during his tenure. He has been criticizing certain quarters of the ruling elite for sheltering corrupt politicians. His criticism against military brought the country at standstill. It is not uncommon for political leaders to have differing views or disagreements with their country’s military establishment, especially in the context of a democratic system. It is worth noting that any claims or accusations made against the military or any other institution should be based on factual evidence. However, Imran Khan has failed to substantiate his claims regarding establishment of the country.
The rift of distribution of powers during PTIs’ government was another point, which halted the overall economic progress of the country. Punjab is largest province of Pakistan in terms of population. The decision to appoint Usman Buzdar as Chief Executive of the province sent shock waves within PTI circles. People was not happy with that decision as Buzdar had completely failed to run the province. There were calls from party leaders to change Buzdar with another senior member but resisted their demand and asked Buzdar to continue as Chief Minister of the province. Buzdar’s bad governance, his losing grip over bureaucracy and differences with other party leaders contributed immensely for the bad governance.
Likewise, in social domain, PTI brought intolerance within the society. It has ignored political and social values of the country while criticizing ruling elite. Although every political party has its own set of values and priorities that guide its policies and decision-making. Some senior party leaders expressed concerns about the values and priorities of PTI. Imran Khan’s efforts to combat corruption and challenge military’s traditional hold on power, to control the institutions and power structures in Pakistan under his personal discretion led to instability and weakened Pakistan’s political institutions. His actions destabilized the country and made it more vulnerable to external threats. It was Imran Khan not opposition parties who pitched for military’s interference in the politics. Additionally, his government was not even comfortable with the bureaucratic elite as well. Imran Khan’s government ignored advice and recommendations of bureaucracy. This led to policy decisions that were ill-informed and not in best interests of the country.
Pakistan is an Islamic Republic with a significant Muslim population, and religion plays a prominent role in the country’s cultural and social fabric. In religious context, Imran Khan is trying to weaken Pakistan’s religious institutions as well, which are deeply ingrained in the country’s cultural fabric. Any changes to Pakistan’s religious institutions would likely have significant societal implications and would need to be carefully considered and managed by the country’s leaders and citizens.
In conclusion, Pakistan’s current political situation is complex and multi-faceted, with a range of challenges facing the country. The government and other stakeholders must work together to address these issues and promote stability and progress for the nation. While there are concerns and criticisms about the government’s performance, it is important to have a constructive dialogue and work towards solutions that benefit the people of Pakistan.
It is also important for political leaders to prioritize the needs of the country and work towards promoting its economic and social development. This may involve addressing issues such as poverty, education, healthcare, and infrastructure development. In order to uplift the country, it is crucial for political leaders to prioritize the interests of their citizens and work towards building a more inclusive and prosperous society. This can be achieved through policies that promote economic growth and job creation, as well as investments in education and healthcare. In a nutshell, it is important for leaders to engage in dialogue and cooperation with all stakeholders in order to build consensus and promote the well-being of their citizens. By working together, political leaders and citizens can help to create a brighter and more prosperous future for their country.