Pakistan Is In a Serious Economic And Political Crisis

by WebDesk
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Even by the standards of its perpetually unstable politics, the last few months in the neighboring state of Pakistan have been extremely turbulent.

Pakistan got a government as of April 11 after Prime Minister Imran Khan was forced out of office through a vote of no confidence by the PDM parties led by PMLN. The weeks leading up to the vote, from the filing of the motion on March 8 to the vote on April 10, were dramatic and full of intrigue and ultimately the PTI government was ousted from power and Shehbaz Sharif assumed the office as the PM of Pakistan.

Shaky Political Government

The country is in a serious economic and political crisis. Shahbaz Sharif’s new government has been in a state of decision paralysis and is struggling to find any stability. On the other hand, the ousted prime minister is addressing rallies across the country attacking the Shehbaz government’s legitimacy and pressing for fresh elections in the country.

The current crisis has its genesis in the chequered history of Pakistan. While PM Khan was Pakistan’s first premier to be ousted by a no-confidence vote, he joined his earlier predecessors as a prime minister not completing five years in office. Pakistan’s major opposition parties including PMLN and PPP had been clamoring for Khan’s exit since he assumed office in 2018. The PDM parties had been leveling allegations against the establishment and calling Mr. Khan as a selected PM. Interestingly Mr. Khan was ousted from power by the same military that helped him to come in, It is widely believed that the Gulf between PM Imran Khan and General Bajwa was widening with growing disagreements between the two regarding the whole set of issues including the appointment of ISI chief, CM Punjab, and Mr. Khan’s policy visa viz west, especially Washington.

Army Coups In Pakistan

This is not the first time that the Pakistan army or establishment has indulged in the country’s political affairs. In fact, The Pakistan army’s first political intervention dates back to 1958, led by General Ayub Khan, who abolished the constitutional regime established by the 1956 Constitution. Subsequently, the Army went on to stage three coups in October 1958, July 1977, and October 1999. The recent regime change operation planned by Gen Bajwa with the support of PDM can also be referred to as a Soft military coup. Ousted PM Khan has been trying hard to mobilize the masses by leveling allegations against America for his ouster, he has been accusing America in his political rallies and referring to some acts by an American diplomat but the fact is that the military establishment orchestrated his ouster and threw him out of the office.

Army Generals Have Amassed Wealth

The reality is that the army has been able to govern the country either directly or indirectly through proxy civilian governments. In order to justify its existence, it kept various issues and the invasion threat from India where a strong army was considered a necessity for the existence of the country which has been repeatedly advocated by every Pakistan Army chief. The Army has successfully used the excuse of security threat and ideology to gain financial assistance from across the Islamic world and elsewhere for its own prosperity. Army generals have amassed immense wealth at the cost of the poor people of the country.

Pakistan Army successfully used the excuse of security threat and ideology to gain financial assistance from across the Islamic world and elsewhere for its own prosperity. Army generals have amassed immense wealth at the cost of the poor people of the country

Even recently the army has ordered the import of modern Hi-tech vehicles at a time when the country is on the brink of default. The armed forces’ primary job is to protect the national border and ensure the security of the country and its people besides assisting civil administration in emergency situations like floods, Earthquakes, pandemics, etc. Unnecessary involvement of the military in civilian matters is not advisable for the armed forces of any democratic state in the modern world. Pakistan army is one of the most well-funded and modern armies in the world. It became a vital political force and increasingly infiltrated the economy. Its penetration into crucial political decisions became entrenched in the 80s while the greatest penetration into the economy and society took place in the following decade and could not be reversed to date.

Army’s Dirty Tactics

In the present scheme of things, almost all the political parties have been glued by Gen Bajwa on one platform against PTI and Imran Khan but this coalition in the name of PDM could be short-lived because the mighty Pakistan army has been using these tactics of use and throw since decades. They have also been successfully able to influence the judiciary, NAB, and the election commission over the years. Following the disqualification of PMLN supremo Nawaz Shareef, they helped Imran khan to come to the power. But once Mr. Khan refused to toe the Rawalpindi line he was disgracefully ousted from power and the same set of politicians empowered whom the establishment used to dub as corrupt and incompetent.

Punjabi-Military-Judiciary Nexus

The corruption cases of all the PDM leaders including PMLN leaders Ishaq Dar and Maryam Nawaz were cleared. NAB was reduced to a toothless tiger and the laws were tweaked to normalize the corruption. There is a strong Punjabi-Military-Judiciary nexus that prevents democracy from flourishing even though the people have been calling for early elections for many weeks. The coming few weeks would be important because Gen Bajwa is completing their term in November and a new army chief would be appointed. Imran khan has been trying hard to press for the early elections to ensure the appointment of army chief of his liking to prolong his political career whereas the PMLN-led government would definitely like to appoint an army chief who would toe their line and crush the PTI and stop them from winning the upcoming General Elections.

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