01 August, 2014 / Shawwal 4, 1435

enter image description herePTI has lost the election, let there be no doubt about that. Voting irregularities have been reported in a few constituencies and people are exercising their right to protest this disenfranchisement. But even if the ECP addresses all voter grievances to our hearts content, no sea-change in the results can be expected. The people of Pakistan have spoken loud and clear and they have sent the PML (N) tiger out on the prowl. For PTI's bat, it’s the morning session of the first day of a test match: almighty swipes across the line will have to give way to dogged straight-bat defense.

At this juncture it would be worth charting PTI's course over the years so we can appreciate the monumental task it has accomplished even in defeat.

PTI has been on the political horizon since 1996, but it only began gaining traction in 2009. The nullification of the NRO was a watershed moment and heads should have rolled. But the inertia displayed by the parliamentary political forces (also known as mukmuka in common parlance) dumbfounded many. Imran Khan seized that opportunity and put a stake in the ground by demanding midterm elections. As his stance on many issues from corruption to terrorism became popular and the performance of the PPP government went from bad to worse, swathes of people began crowding the PTI camp.

The party grew exponentially in a brief time, so much so that Imran Khan was confidence enough to hold a rally at Minar-e-Pakistan in October 2011. The rally was a huge success and PTI had finally arrived. Political bigwigs flocked to PTI and the electables PTI had been missing were at its feet. True to form, Imran Khan held their feet to the fire by announcing intra party elections. Many of the new entrants balked and bolted, but Khan stood steady. This electable exodus had the potential to cost his party many parliament seats, but Khan pressed on with the elections and as a result his party began to have a semblance of an institution with roots in the masses.

By this time it had become patently clear that Khan's moves were not guided by how many seats he would win or lose, he was doing things because they were the right thing to do. He wanted to succeed, but not at the cost of his conscience.

It was a new type of politics. It was something the Pakistani people had never seen before. As a result, a large number of people, especially in the urban middle classes, sat up and took notice. For ages, they had seen politics as usual and had grown tired of it. So when a viable alternative was presented, they jumped on it. They began owning the PTI cause, sacrificing their time, money and energy in their quest for change.

Like any other new contender, the odds were stacked against them, yet they fought valiantly. The skipper's infectious perseverance and determination rubbed off on his supporters and they fought like cornered tigers. Dreams of a clean sweep seemed near fruition. When Imran Khan fell and suffered injuries at a Lahore rally, the PTI rank and file rose and took it upon themselves to ensure that the campaign does not end in a whimper.

The dawn of May 11 was full of hope, but by the time darkness set in, most of this hope had dissipated. PTI had done well in KPK and pockets of urban Punjab, but it was clear the much-anticipated sweep would not materialise. Heads began to droop. A loss had turned serious contenders into distant runners up within a day.

This loss has put PTI in uncharted territory. In the run up to the election, PTI had taken up the mantle of the underdog challenger and done justice to it. A chastening loss has left the PTI faithful listless. Navigating the party ship through these choppy waters will require Imran Khan to dig deep and bring his legendary leadership skills to the fore once more. Just like he taught his party cadres to compete, he will have to teach them how to lose with grace.

It will be crucial for the party to consolidate its wins and ensure that the gains which have been painstakingly made are not squandered. Even though the party did not do as well as expected, it did not return empty handed either. It's in a position to form the government in KPK. A bird in the hand is worth two in the bush, goes the saying. PTI will have to take this saying to heart and make the KPK government a model for the rest of Pakistan. At the national level, the party will be well advised to avoid confrontation solely for political point scoring. The country is facing a multitude of challenges and what it can least afford is petty squabbling. If the party can adopt the motto "Think nationally, Act locally" not only will it do the nation a great service, it will enhance its chances to win the elections next time the nation goes to the polls.


Irfan Waheed is an engineer working in Austin, Texas. He can be reached at irfanwaheed@msn.com

The views expressed by this blogger and in the following reader comments do not necessarily reflect the views and policies of the Dawn Media Group.

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Comments (110) (Closed)


Syed Ahmed
May 18, 2013 08:07pm

Let us not jump to conclusions. A day after the elections the ECP announced that in Punjab there was massive rigging in 54 NA seats and on the day of the election at around 4:00 pm the ECP had announced that they had failed to conduct free and fair elections across Karachi affecting 7 NA seats. Wherever, in limited numbers re-counting (not re-polling) has taken place, the incumbent has lost in favor of the PTI candidate. A great PMLN stalwart like Ch Nisar Ali Khan lost his PP seat to a PTI candidate. All recounting has now been halted. There is a re-polling scheduled for tomorrow (Sunday) in 45 Polling booths in Karachi which MQM has announced it would boycott. Elections, like the one we just had will never lead to a proper democratic government. This was a perversion of democracy. We are digging in for the long haul.

kdspirited
May 18, 2013 08:17pm

Very well Written and balanced article. Great job

Waleed
May 18, 2013 08:25pm

Well said. Can't agree more.

TAM
May 18, 2013 08:28pm

From the looks and sound of it, PTI will always remain as an underdog party because the status quo mindset of the nation not to try something new cannot be changed.

The mindset of rigid inflexibility shows in all walks of life: religion, education, innovation, modernity, our eating and culinary habits etc.

Azhar uddin
May 18, 2013 08:36pm

I don't advocate confrontation for the sake of confrontation but rigging is absolutely dishonest & unethical. If it happened in Lahore , Karachi or any where else it must be investigated.

Babar
May 18, 2013 08:50pm

The fight is not for the overall election results ... it is for the domino effect that NA-250 will have for MQM and NA-125 and NA-122 for PML-N. These are critical seats that should not be conceded out of good will.

Skhan
May 18, 2013 08:55pm

Well put Irfan & the heading is so ept, except I dont think they have lost, its more like the people have given them a province for starters and the buffet will be the next elections InshaAllah, they just need to make sure they do the starters justice. As you said, use the opportunity to make KPK the most peaceful, efficient & well administered province in Pakistan InshaAllah.

Mehdi Raza KaramAli
May 18, 2013 08:59pm

Had you been in Pakistan you would have known that these are not few seats. Atleast add 25 more from Punjab and 10 from Karachi. the rigging that took place in interior sindh and balochistan is something not even noticed by media. Imran said that he wishes to move forward. But as for the irregularities its the people who voted that are on roads. And its their right. There is no acceptance of lost in it.

SBB
May 18, 2013 09:07pm

If the PTI taught you so much, then what are you doing in Austin, writing about issues that don't affect you? It just seems odd that people who have fled the situation have such strong opinions about the situation.

Guest
May 18, 2013 09:17pm

Exactly! And IK should tell his supporters not to harass ordinary citizens by blocking the roads. There's nothing "naya" about such behavior.

Ali Shah
May 18, 2013 09:24pm

Probably the best piece you have written thus far

A.Vetta
May 18, 2013 09:48pm

Yes, Imran Khan ‘seized the opportunity’ but was beaten by a mature and seasoned politician. Reading reports of his election speeches, I fear that he is unlikely to achieve political maturity because he does not think he has anything to learn. Within a year TTP will turn on his KPK Ministers and workers and that may be the beginning of the end of PTI. I would be sorry to see that end.

Jawad
May 18, 2013 09:55pm

Very good article. PTI has a chance to show not only their point of view of good governance but also the true and just political party. Who said it will be easy? It will be an uphill battle for Pakistanis and they should be reminded that at least they have got a platform to work from. The biggest win is gaining a position and opportunity to prove themselves.

SK
May 18, 2013 10:18pm

Well written, well said. Unfortunately, however, rhetoric has already met the test of reality. See the capitulation to JI and QWP in KPK for the sake of power. Look at the self righteous actions and fulminations of its Karachi leadership and the self delusional beliefs they have about their voting strength in that city. U r spot on, however, that PTI need to lose with grace, something they appear incapable of learning.

SK
May 18, 2013 10:17pm

Well written, well said. Unfortunately, however, rhetoric has already met the test of reality. See the capitulation to JI and QWP in KPK for the sake of power. Look at the self righteous actions and fulminations of its Karachi leadership and the self delusional beliefs they have about their voting strength in that city. U r spot on, however, that PTI need to lose with grace, something they appear incapable of learning.

Azam
May 18, 2013 10:46pm

Excellent analysis

Mir
May 18, 2013 10:47pm

Does anyone know the difference between losing a fair fight and conceding versus losing an unfair fight and forced to concede. So many people are so adamant about IK conceding defeat regardless if the outcome was all fair or not just to prove one more time that might is right as goes the saying. I dont mean to understate the dignified defeat but one should'nt over state the undignified victories by the others. Some may also call this injustice and that's the root of all the problems in Pakistan or anywhere the society is in decline everything else is an excuse and an appeasement .

Junaid Bhutto
May 18, 2013 11:12pm

Well said. PTI needs to address the grievances of its voters, specially in KHI to encourage them to vote again next time. However, it is time to focus on KPK and realize their dream on a smaller scale there. It would be interesting to see who is Leader of the Opposition though. I think PPP will get it but it would be nice if Khan can be this person. The country needs a strong recognizable person at that slot.

Parvez
May 18, 2013 11:40pm

After reading this I thought to myself ' why is the author so out of touch with ground reality ' and then checking his profile I realised that with him sitting six thousand miles away one can forgive him.

RJ
May 18, 2013 11:43pm

Well written article. I feel that Imaran should take this defeat with Grace. It is time to settle down and move on for the future of this country. The numbers speak for it self.

M. F. Khan
May 18, 2013 11:49pm

Irfan, thanks for writing a good analysis on PTI performance and wayforward. I hope and believe IK will take the right course of action as evident by his reaction after NS met him in SKMH. Now a daunting task for him to discpline his young brigades specially on cyber space, they need to learn to accpet crtitcism with grace not indulging in filthy abusing of opponents and critics. But one thing is clear he has changed the PK politics for ever. Now he has to show magnanimity towards other political leaders not attacking personally.

Black
May 19, 2013 12:10am

you paint a pretty picture for Khan. Did you ever wonder, why his party flag is half red?

Yusuf
May 19, 2013 12:10am

Excellent. People have to learn to live with the truth. If Mr. Khan will deliver, chances are 15 years from now, he will be able to form the government. In politics change comes, but not so fast. There are citizens of Pakistan, who have been voting for other parties, and it will take time to change.

Aqil Siddiqi
May 19, 2013 12:21am

For what it's worth, atleast Imran Khan showed the world, that there is still a light at the end of the tunnel. That, there is a man, a leader, a visionary who can change the fortunes of this nation. Yes, he lost the elections, so what? but his dedication and love for his country will get him the results, that he longed for. He also showed, that this nation is still awake and waiting for the right time to get rid of these good for nothing leaders, who time after time did nothing but looted this poor nation.Good Luck Imran Khan and most of all, "Good Luck Pakistan". Aqil Siddiqi (Canada).

Ahsan
May 19, 2013 12:27am

Well said. This is the beginning not the end.......

sana shaikh
May 19, 2013 12:35am

Loosing is not an option when you are at true path.

PakiMan2013
May 19, 2013 01:12am

PTI is not about maintaining status quo which means accept defeat and move on. Accepting defeat would have been a normal reaction if elections were fair across the country. Given that there was no level playing field and that there were no neutral umpires, the only way to change the system is to come onto streets and bring a revolution. Only in this manner, status quo will come to end.

Amir
May 19, 2013 01:48am

Well, I do not agree with this author on PTI's loss in the elections. If one had witnessed PTI's large gathering in Karachi last year, it would be clear that the only way PTI would not be able to get a seat from Karachi was possible only by rigging the elections and this is exactly what happened. The same is true for Lahore, where in spite of being the most popular party, PTI did not win a seat. Imagine what would happen to the corrupt personalities, the tax evaders, those who consider themselves above the law, if PTI had won the elections? This is exactly the reason why elections were rigged.

Aj
May 19, 2013 01:57am

I want my five minutes back of reading this.

goodDeedsLeadTo
May 19, 2013 02:24am

Noon has won because province of Punjab enjoyed the highest growth rate, lowest load shedding, highest business growth, highest agricultural growth, highest industrial growth , highest employment growth, highest, no corruption by the top leadership, no offshore family ownerships of top leadership, no default of loans, best health care, hardly any children left behind to receive education, cleanest water, best waste management, strongest institutions. The fact, what happened is exactly opposite of afore mentioned, and still Noon won, does not add up. This means, parties don't need to show results, to win elections in Pakistan. Party heads do not need to be clean to win elections.

gangadin
May 19, 2013 02:50am

If you don't know how to lose with grace, you will never win. PTI should stop whining and set an example in KP. Rest will follow in due course.

goodDeedsLeadTo
May 19, 2013 02:51am

It is due to the slave like mentality, that PPP is still as much alive as PTI, even in death. PPP will always remain an elephant in the room. Even with worse performance, it is neck in neck with PTI, if we look at the number of nationally assembly seats & performance in Sindh. I think Imran Khan allowed party to implode by conducting intra party elections close to the election, and allowed the opportunity to Noon to make alliances, and strategize to win elections. Also, Imran Khan fell from the lift at the 11th hour, he lost the opportunity to stump & mobilize the crowd in his favor during the last leg of the campaign before the elections.

naz
May 19, 2013 02:58am

@PakiMan2013: IK nad the people in Pak cannot beat the huge crocodiles in political arena as they are too strong and know how to buy some people who have weaknesses.MAY ALLAH HELP IK,PTI AND PEOPLE OF PAKISTAN.

naz
May 19, 2013 03:02am

@Yusuf: by the way dont forget what ever Thaherul qadri saheb predicted is true!!!!!!!!most people made fun of him .

naz
May 19, 2013 03:03am

@goodDeedsLeadTo: Thaherul Qadri saheb predicted all what is happening .

goodDeedsLeadTo
May 19, 2013 03:09am

Imran Khan will implement his vision in KPK, and, the NEW KPK, similar to his vision of NEW PAKISTAN, will become an example for the entire Pakistanis to be convinced to not pass up the opportunity of a life time to Change Pakistan into a welfare state, free of corruption, which is IK's vision.

just like SK is a microcosm of his vision to build strong institutions, where the poor & weak are not left behind, & where governance kicks in when ever a rule is broken or RACI (Responsibility, Accountability, Consult, Inform) is not used to appropriate budgets, funds dispensed, or exercise due diligence. KPK will become new KPK with baldayati system, strong governance, and the rotten fish chopped at the top first, to trickle down the pattern, top down.

Punjabi
May 19, 2013 03:13am

@goodDeedsLeadTo: Noon won because they rigged the votes in Lahore and other constituent. Punjab's growth rate is same is Mali and Somalia of Africa, Punjab suffers 12 hours a day load shading, all of the manufacturing work has stopped in Punjab. I am shocked to see your progress report of Punjab.

HNY13
May 19, 2013 03:21am

@Aj: lol best comment so far

HNY13
May 19, 2013 03:22am

best comment

Noman
May 19, 2013 03:47am

If you think fighting against corruption makes you a sore loser than this country is doomed. Things will never get better here.

MSA
May 19, 2013 03:55am

@goodDeedsLeadTo: It is the 'Vadera' culture in the countryside of Punjab that works in favor of Noon and PPP.

Yawar
May 19, 2013 04:11am

I'm confused. The title got my attention but the article seems to ramble on and on without any purpose. Anyway, I am also perplexed at why the author thinks that going from 1 seat in the NA to so many more and being able to establish a government in KP is defeat? This is not time to make excuses or shying away from accepting responsibility. The party workers and the country expects PTI to play major roles in KP and in the NA in the next five years or else the next elections will turn it back to a one man show.

Yawar
May 19, 2013 04:27am

@A.Vetta: Could not agree more. The campaign speeches of Nawaz Sharif had much more tact and finnesse than Imran Khan's. Sharif painted a rosy future and told people what they wanted to hear; motorway from Karachi to Peshawar, metro busses, progressive Shahbaz Sharif schemes in Punjab to be administered in other provinces, bullet train from Karachi to Peshawar, etc. etc. The question is will Imran Khan overcome his ego and learn from that in the next go around?

George Thakur
May 19, 2013 05:35am

To begin with, Imran Khan christened his Party with an inappropriate caption: Tehrik-e-insaaf. In Pakistan, Imran's compatriots want food more than they want insaaf. Imran may consider renaming his Party 'Tehrik-e-ghiza', if he wishes to win in the next general elections.

Saleem
May 19, 2013 07:53am

The article started well. However, by calling the election fraud and rigging on a massive scale as "petty squabbling" The writer totally lost all credibility in my eyes. Yes the nation is facing massive challenges which need resolving, but certainly not at the expese of Justice and fair and free election. The writer needs to re-evaluate his thoughts with this in mind.

Anees
May 19, 2013 08:14am

All those who are in their 40's will remember the 1987 Cricket World Cup. Pakistan was hot favorite to win it. But then on 4th November 1987, Pakistan lost the semi-final to Australia at Lahore. The nation was stunned. It was totally unexpected. But the Skipper had courage, determination and leadership skills. He continued till he succeeded in 1992 and that too when nobody expected it. Now, just compare this to the whole political scenario during the last 2-3 years. It took him 5 years from 1987 to 1992 to achieve his goal. Another 5 years from 2013, and he will be THERE.. in sha Allah.. Good luck skipper

butt
May 19, 2013 08:14am

PTI is the party of riches living abroad, i agree its very famous on Facebook, tweeter and all of internet but mind it FB and internet represent less than 5 % of pakistanis even TV is only available to 15 to 20 % of pakistanis, so finding every thumb up for imran khan on internet doesnt represent the ground realities of pakistan, 80% of pakistan is rural and people in villages have teir own problems thay dont care what problems green passports face abroad.i am myself a witness of PTI actual winners looting the ballot boxes and immense firing on streets in Taxila where they won. so they are all the same but i agree thats an individual act. If IK has to survive pakistan politics he must learn to accept the defeat and move on, again he is showing immaturity by bringing people on the streets and giving the impression that whole election was rigged in this way he will lose KPK also. too bad for naya pakistan .

naihan
May 19, 2013 08:30am

well i guess imran kahn has not lost the election this was his call that made nation come out of homes for vote this is his victory that we are now awake and he is comparitively new in politics if this time his kpk govt sets new dimensions as per his thoughts no one will be able to stand infront of his party next time in sha allah......but please nation nd esp youth dnt sleep this time otherwise misery for whole life will be your fate....be with imran khan in opposition and push the sharif govt to do good for pakistan other wise THROW IT OUT BEFORE 5 YEARS :)

naihan
May 19, 2013 08:31am

well i guess imran kahn has not lost the election this was his call that made nation come out of homes for vote this is his victory that we are now awake and he is comparitively new in politics if this time his kpk govt sets new dimensions as per his thoughts no one will be able to stand infront of his party next time in sha allah......but please nation nd esp youth dnt sleep this time otherwise misery for whole life will be your fate....be with imran khan in opposition and push the sharif govt to do good for pakistan other wise THROW IT OUT BEFORE 5 YEARS :)

Tsunami khan
May 19, 2013 09:08am

@goodDeedsLeadTo: You mean the lowest GDP growth rate in 50 years!

James
May 19, 2013 09:30am

@Aj: Agreed. What a waste of time.

Khan
May 19, 2013 10:01am

@SK: Who should they have joined instead?

Nagi
May 19, 2013 10:04am

@gangadin: Raising voice against the Rigging is not called whining. The process will take its due course only if we identify our mistakes and implement corrections by system reforms. Turning blind eye and moving forward is not the solution.

Khan
May 19, 2013 10:07am

@A.Vetta: One one hand you don't think he is mature enough and on the other hand you feel sorry for him. Give me a break.

Khan
May 19, 2013 10:14am

@Parvez: Beleive me, the Pakistanis leaving abroad love their country and know about their mother land a lot more than the country men living inside Pakistan. We also get a lot more hurt when we hear about the way our country is being handled by both our public and by our leaders living inside Pakistan.

Shawkat
May 19, 2013 10:20am

Nice article. It summarizes the situation very well

aarif
May 19, 2013 10:48am

@goodDeedsLeadTo: PTI and PPP neck and neck? PTI is on the way up, and PPP on the way down!

shahid
May 19, 2013 10:51am

Writer has some valid observations. However, Imran deserves more credit. In a system like ours, a leader challenges the status quo and the corrupt political mafia and manages to show significant performance. This is no small achievement. Khan has kept his reputation. He has led from the front. His address from his bed after the injury was historic and immensely inspiring. If Imran Khan did not win, it is not his loss. The nation did not deserve him yet.

Jamal syed
May 19, 2013 10:56am

@goodDeedsLeadTo: It seems like half way through this comment people decided they didn't like it. Only if they had patience to read the whole para. :)

shahid
May 19, 2013 10:57am

In a presidential form of government, Imran Khan would win the election hands down but in the present system of bradaries and electables, it is an up hill battle for a clean and principled politician.

shahid
May 19, 2013 10:57am

In a presidential form of government, Imran Khan would win the election hands down but in the present system of bradaries and electables, it is an up hill battle for a clean and principled politician.

shahid
May 19, 2013 10:58am

In a presidential form of government, Imran Khan would win the election hands down but in the present system of bradaries and electables, it is an up hill battle for a clean and principled politician.

Masoud
May 19, 2013 11:13am

The truth is PTI has not been able to win the required number of seats to form govt. This however does not mean that PTI has to sit back post. PTI can play active linesmen role stopping the treasury from scoring illegal goals. If PTI is able to deliver in KP then I can see it coming to power much earlier. By the way the currently held election cannot be given a clean chit. Messages of commendation to PMLN coming so early from foreign friends cast some in the mind. The cementing was done too early. It looks everything was planned in advance.

Noman
May 19, 2013 01:01pm

The person from PTI who will likely be the Chief Minister of the province claimed couple of days ago, that they (PTI) have no enmity with Taliban, and that Taliban are Pakistanis too.

Why would the author of the article have hope that PTI will bring some change then, after this incredibly naive (and also insulting to all those killed at the hand of Taliban, for which Taliban claimed responsibility too) statement?

Apparently killing thousands of people, closing schools and discouraging education, stopping such social programs as polio vaccinations, doing suicide bombing and then claiming responsibility, and acting in utter disregard to the law of the land, doesn't make someone an enemy of the state.

El Cid
May 19, 2013 02:07pm

@George Thakur: Insaf is the foundation on which everything else, if it is to last, must be built. Recall how that "Roti, Kupra, Mukan" was built without equity and justice...without the foundation of Insaf.

Syed Hussain Akbari
May 19, 2013 02:25pm

Why did Imran Khan lose nationwide and why did he won in KPK ? A question needs to be analysed and answer sought. Rigging is a very common blame, in some cases perhaps also justified. But the reason may lie some where else. About Imran Khan it appears that his principles became very conspicuously non-secular. Quite some expressions of his speak of matters which are very evidently disputable. And now the wedding with Jamaat-e-Islami in KPK has put the final signature on what he actually thinks. And that in an area which is plaguing under serious ethnic and also religious divides. Apparently the discussions Imran Khan wants to have with Taliban who are very openly ethnic and staunch sectarian minded and against all progressive thinking will be more submissive special when Jamaat-e-Islami will also sit on the same table. Be careful Mr. Imran Khan. People will be with you if you promise them a Pakistan of Quaid-e-Azam who was non-ethnic and completely secular. So was Iqbal also.

raju
May 19, 2013 02:29pm

@George Thakur: When there is insaaf automatically everything else will fall in line.

ramiz
May 19, 2013 02:42pm

IK knows how to face defeat. We will introduce a model in KPK insha Allah. But this is the fundamental right of people to fight against rigging. For how long we will be compromising? If not this time what is guarantee election will be free and fair next time? We have wasted already 5 years to save that disgraceful democracy....PTI needs to come out of streets to finish this feudalism from roots. Otherwise we will be waiting every next election for the sake of hope!

Take a stand
May 19, 2013 03:10pm

It’s nice to see so many logical comments. I am a citizen of Lahore and casted vote on 11 May along with my family. I know many people who casted their votes first time in 60 years. This is the change IK has brought to the political scene. He has appealed to a large number of people whom no one could appeal in over 60 years. He picked up courage to stand up against politics of blood and force in Karachi. No one could do it in past few decades. People are fighting with the confidence that IK has given them. He has given them the much needed confidence that the system can be changed for good. That’s the Change. If someone thinks that these people will forget that they have been cheated, then he is mistaken. Ladies are talking about these issues in in their homes, students in universities and political activists in protests. That’s the Change. They say that their protests will not spread anarchy but accepting the system of cheating is the real cause of anarchy. That’s the Change. They say that someone has to fight for this change, sometime. So why to leave it for their children, why not to fight it out ourselves and take a stand NOW! That’s the Change.

Take a stand
May 19, 2013 03:11pm

It’s nice to see so many logical comments. I am a citizen of Lahore and casted vote on 11 May along with my family. I know many people who casted their votes first time in 60 years. This is the change IK has brought to the political scene. He has appealed to a large number of people whom no one could appeal in over 60 years. He picked up courage to stand up against politics of blood and force in Karachi. No one could do it in past few decades. People are fighting with the confidence that IK has given them. He has given them the much needed confidence that the system can be changed for good. That’s the Change. If someone thinks that these people will forget that they have been cheated, then he is mistaken. Ladies are talking about these issues in in their homes, students in universities and political activists in protests. That’s the Change. They say that their protests will not spread anarchy but accepting the system of cheating is the real cause of anarchy. That’s the Change. They say that someone has to fight for this change, sometime. So why to leave it for their children, why not to fight it out ourselves and take a stand NOW! That’s the Change.

Noman Ansari
May 19, 2013 03:49pm

@Noman: *then

muhammad mushtaq haji
May 19, 2013 04:08pm

Now the time has come for Imran khan to blame the whole world for his failure,and will keep BABBLING that he is not allowed to do implement his dreams and in next election he will be in the same boat with all others politicians proving them selves innocents .

khanm
May 19, 2013 04:28pm

The will to win, the desire to succeed, the urge to reach your full potential... these are the keys that will unlock the door to personal excellence.dont loose hope ....

M. Saeed Awan
May 19, 2013 05:04pm

Nothing would happen in KPK where Sonami Khan is going to rule. He is arrogant and immature poltician who built airy castles. Doing practically is a different and difficult job. Drama baz Tahur Qadri could not persuade people to cast vote but [people flocked in number. Let the elected people rule and make this country prosperous.

Khalid
May 19, 2013 05:12pm

@George Thakur: every problem path went through 'Insaaf'.

Waleed
May 19, 2013 05:45pm

Fire in PTI supporters can only do good if they learn to accept ground reallities and find new ways to convince people accordingly. We must acknowledge that others have equal right of expressing themselves ..... whether it goes our way or not.

Malik Arif
May 19, 2013 05:59pm

Gentlemen, now time is to prove himself, putting mud on others is easy but practically facing the masses in power is something different. Now we are expecting model government in KPK which will compell others to follow. if IK failed, then you know....... Tsnaumi will be burried!

nabidad
May 19, 2013 06:21pm

People of Pakistan lost the elections not Imran Khan (PTI).

Desi
May 19, 2013 09:22pm

Irfan Waheed,I read your article,I believe your thoughts for PTI are ideal in a perfect world,but lets not forget that the PTI vote is mostly the educated which I consider the minority.Now the majority are the uneducated and the uninformed who simply follow the word of mouth which in many cases are the leaders of their area.I'm trying to understand this whole election fiesco when every indication sided PTI yet here we are,the same ol story of cheating,rigging,not allowing the people to get to the polling stations,like the NA 250 where the officials never even made it to the stations and so on.Shouldn't the ECP hold themselves responsible and accountable for this shameful irresponsible act when they held everyone else responsible ? I live in the East Texas area,just 4 hours from you,like you,I would have liked to have given a chance to vote as a overseas Pakistani.By the way I love Austin,the home of the Texas Long horns,my school.

salman khan
May 19, 2013 10:29pm

a journey of thousand miles begins from a single step.......................

butt
May 19, 2013 10:44pm

PTI is the party of riches living abroad, i agree its very famous on Facebook, tweeter and all of internet but mind it FB and internet represent less than 5 % of pakistanis even TV is only available to 15 to 20 % of pakistanis, so finding every thumb up for imran khan on internet doesnt represent the ground realities of pakistan, 80% of pakistan is rural and people in villages have teir own problems thay dont care what problems green passports face abroad.i am myself a witness of PTI actual winners looting the ballot boxes and immense firing on streets in Taxila where they won. so they are all the same but i agree thats an individual act. If IK has to survive pakistan politics he must learn to accept the defeat and move on, again he is showing immaturity by bringing people on the streets and giving the impression that whole election was rigged in this way he will lose KPK also. too bad for naya pakistan .

Shaheen
May 20, 2013 12:38am

Election results aside Imran Khan has won the hearts and minds of the people.. It is sad that majority Pakistan is still in the shackles of slavery of the ruling classes and they are intimidated by the heavies of the unscrupulous political parties into surrendering their NIC cards for small sums of money (Rs500/-per card)... How can you even imagine free and fair elections under such circumstances. PTI may or may not have won the elections but this certainly is not level playing field and it is very difficult for the people to understand. Imran Khan can come to terms with the defeat but those who casted their votes and the ones who were not allowed to caste their votes require answers from the ECP. "Who so ever" allowed and encouraged the manipulation of the elections to obtain 1st Division results for PML-N has been very foolish and miscalculated the consequences of their actions. We are back in 2008 and like before it is still the establishment that has been at the helm of the elections. Little do they realise that they have come down another notch in the estimations of the nation. Yes PTI may not be ready and probably may not have won the election but even the slightest interference and influencing the results of the election is an unforgivable act. Considering the situation Pakistan it was very importnat that these elections were held according to the wishes of the Pakistanis. After all US and Saudis and EU is not the ones who are going to live on this land and it is our lives that are affected by the self serving interests of the foreign powers. It has just become too much to bear now.. and enough is enough. Hands off Pakistan.

Naveed
May 20, 2013 02:42am

What is game changing are actually people who are informative. Here in Peshawar if you were to roam around the city, you would find that even the uneducated, but informative, people support Imran Khan's cause. You would be even amazed to know that my milkman went for Imran Khan, and even our maid, she is somewhat 40 year's old who helps my mom, opted for voting Imran khan, directly in opposition to her husbands choice. Now that is the strategy which i feel was effective in getting PTI a majority here. And yes of course the educated played their part, but the informative were real piece of the puzzle.

Haider
May 20, 2013 02:47am

Irfan great writing man!

Khalid Riaz
May 20, 2013 03:45am

I have found the article and the comments very thought provoking. Here are some additional thoughts.

  1. While Imran deserves all the credit for bringing us to this point, let us not put all the responsibility on him, nor create a personality cult around him. We did that during the 1940s, and we are still paying the price. This time around, let us all stand up and be counted.

  2. PTI needs to avoid all unnecessary debates and battles, and focus entirely on it's agenda as outlined in it's manifesto.

  3. PTI needs to identify a few key achievable goals in it's manifesto for Naya Pakistan and implement the necessary action plans during 2013, so it has enough time to develop KPK as a model province and set the pace for the rest of the country. In my assessment these include (in order of priority):

a. Empower people at the grass roots level by decentralizing state structures through devolution, and thus hold local government elections ASAP.

b. Transparency, austerity and accountability at all levels of government from day one.

c. Fulfill the constitutional commitment of free and compulsory education up to secondary school for all children, through one system of education.

d. Develop all DHQs as centers of excellence in tertiary healthcare, and make them responsible for establishing and maintaining the health of the citizens of their district through preventive and primary healthcare and a network of BHUs and RHCs in their districts.

e. Clean drinking water and access to sanitation and waste disposal systems for all citizens.

f. Provincial energy self sufficiency

g. Establish a Provincial Counter Terrorism Authority, which will serve as a model for the future National Counter Terrorism Authority.

g. Reorganized and well trained police force.

All of these ideas originated from the PTI Manifesto, though in several instances the words are mine.

On the surface, this plan may not look as impressive as a network of highways and tall buildings all over KPK, but it will create tens of thousands of new jobs, a new cadre of leadership at the grass roots, an educated and healthy populace, and a transparent and accountable government; all elements that will form the foundation and provide a framework for sustaining the Naya Pakistan movement.

Khalid Riaz.

Farooque
May 20, 2013 04:55am

Imran Khan has never been a gracious winner then how can he be good loser. Remeber 1992 Worldcup speech. You my friend, are barking up the wrong tree.

Asad Khan
May 20, 2013 07:46am

What is the point of this article. PTI of all parties knows how to lose - they just didn't. Get ready for status quo for the next 5 years as Pakistan and its people are the losers here.

akhtar
May 20, 2013 08:42am

irfan you know gross injustice has been done not alone to khan but to the system which the self made Quid,s heirs have done and have insulted the entire nation.If you profess to passively accept the injustice,to me you are supporter of the perpetrator. Pti may not get a land slide victory but the decency of the system will be restored and the real face of wrong doers will be exposed along with their much touted credibility. Remember if you accept this violation of principle then you be ready for other transgresses

manzoor choudhry
May 20, 2013 09:01am

I totally disagree with this letter.In my opinion and rightly too,had there been no rigging PTI would have won.These the most rigged elections.Pakistan berucracy is world most corrupt berucracy.They have played their dirtiest role in defeating PTI.It was very common concern that if PTI comes,every body including politicians,bussiness community and berucracy have to declare their assets in and out of country.There is no doubt that majority of management group people have their accounts outside the country.Leader of opposition choudhry Nisar spouse and children are foreign national and so is auditor general and many more.Imran Khan has no education on corrupt minded society,its berucracy and politicians.So he is cheated very well.Now Imran Khan must come out and bring his SONAMI tro Islamabad.Or he will fail for ever

shahzad waheed
May 20, 2013 09:10am

Well written article! The depression I've felt in my heart since May 11th is indescribable.......feels like a dagger thru my chest. I was confident that we Pakistanis, even the "not so educated" population woud finally come to our senses this time around and get rid of the same old dirty scoundrels from the past. But lo and behold, the same old criminals are back :-(

Worst part of all is that we Pakistanis have to deal with more doom, gloom and corruption until the Sharif government gets overthrown again. Until that happens, valuable time will be wasted away. We need IK right away. SW

shahzad w
May 20, 2013 09:29am

@Aj: Seems like you are a slow reader. Or perhaps your intelectual level is not up to par.

Left is Right
May 20, 2013 10:15am

KPK government a model for the rest of Pakistan....hum daikhain gay !!!

riz khan
May 20, 2013 10:44am

Well, yes PTI lost the winning position but not election.Nevertheless irrespective of result and rigging claims the caravan has to move forward. Two problems, IK, has to keep his new voters alive that their effort has not gone waste, therefore, contrarily he has to prove his fight against rigging momentous till final dharna on 24 May. Secondly, he should have END and EXIT strategy with win win situation, which is not yet in sight. Best wishes to him

Khurram
May 20, 2013 11:36am

@Take a stand: What should be noted ad accepted by PTI is that all those who came out first time, not necessarily voted for PTI; some of us wanted the PML n to win and we came out first time as well.

Khurram
May 20, 2013 11:36am

@Take a stand: What should be noted ad accepted by PTI is that all those who came out first time, not necessarily voted for PTI; some of us wanted the PML n to win and we came out first time as well.

Khurram
May 20, 2013 11:36am

@Take a stand: What should be noted ad accepted by PTI is that all those who came out first time, not necessarily voted for PTI; some of us wanted the PML n to win and we came out first time as well.

BaeNiqaab
May 20, 2013 12:40pm

It is pertinent to say that “We are sitting on a volcano “, an upcoming political party has been started blame game since 11 May and it is observed that they are directly attacking to the high command of another big political party in a largest city of Pakistan. In a republic country everyone has freedom to give his or her opinion in a suitable manner, the constitution of Pakistan teaches that “Nobody has right to assassin another character ". Politician having slogan of “CHANGE ", provoking innocent citizens to come out on streets and he want them to disturb the city life. It is not necessary here to write about the history of victim party, as they have a very large mandate within and outside the city. Black tactics could be sighted very clearly by newly appear second biggest political party; a very huge amount of money is being spent to fulfill devil’s wishes. Before election this party were blaming and shouting against that one that are going to make federal Government but immediately after election they have been started their whole power to let down the third largest political party of Pakistan.
It is very hurting that our media are just busy in increasing the TRP of their channels. When Lyari Gang was slaughtering the innocent people of this city, where was the media and where were the “CHANGE” politicians? Who on earth is responsible for the “TRUTH”? Nobody knows the correct answer of this question. Innocent people are being misguided, rumors are spreading, What we are seeing could be the harvest of the seeds of the vile and unrestrained anger and hatred that have been planted by the self-described media stars and politicians who claim to be true conservatives, real Republicans, and patriotic. There are several another serious issues are in the queue and the most important thing is that no political party would be able to make Government with the help of few seats of Karachi, it is the time to prove manifestos neither challenge the power of another political parties. By doing this non serious attitude these parties are increasing troubles day by day. Election has been completed by authority; everyone should accept it and if they have reservations and observations then simply choose the correct path like good republicans. There will be not good results if parties are not leaving black political tactics, it is an alarming situation and county could not afford more clashes. We want peace, respect and dignity. Long live Pak

K G Surendran
May 20, 2013 12:48pm

The PTI and Imran Khan have been good for democracy in Pakistan, the people will be less cynical. However, governance is a different cup of tea and his party will be tested in the province which he has won and their actions observed closely. Imran Khan is a very intelligent man and one gets the feeling that he will deliver.

Aamir Khan
May 20, 2013 01:10pm

Pray for street-man to become statesman...

Naila
May 20, 2013 01:55pm

@Farooque: Hold your horses, dude. The word 'LOSE' does NOT exit in IK's dictionary .. less than a year ago, he was considered IRRELEVANT .. now everyone, friends and foes, is talking about him. Like it or not, there isn't a more honest and able leader in Pakistan, today!

bilal khan
May 20, 2013 04:23pm

Pointless article, sitting in Austin and writing an article about Pakistan and its politics is easier then experiencing it yourself.

The only thing you got right was a bit where you mentioned " He taught us to win " second part would only be correct if PTI would have lost fair and square.

By your definition than Louis Armstrong , Ben Johnson, and all the other drug cheat should be hailed as winner and allowed to keep there titles.

you learn to loose when you know you have lost convincingly and fairly, you just cant act as door mat.

Hammad Shah
May 20, 2013 05:37pm

Election results in Pakistan my friend are always manipulated. Next time round Pakistan goes to vote it will the other status quo party in power.

Abdullah Niazi
May 20, 2013 05:46pm

Imran K tried to show us a way out of dynastic politics, Sharifs of Punjab , Zardari-Bhuttos of Sindh , sadly we did not follow him. Seems Pakistanis especially Punjabis,Sindhis are happy with status quo .On the contrary, people of KPK went for a change.

JW
May 20, 2013 07:02pm

Good article Irfan. Now IK has a great opportunity to form a model governance system in KPK. Many of the reader comments are truly disturbing. Then I remember, we are a nation of cynics. Our optimism sucked dry by the Generals, Bhutto’s and Sharif’s. We see a person telling us the sincere truth, yet we choose not to believe him. May Allah have mercy on our country and its citizens.

hs
May 20, 2013 07:03pm

The writer of this passage is obviously one sided and has tried to do a good job in making the Pakistani nation a fool again just as the election commission has done in these election. Well written in trying to convert a personal bias in favor of "Think nationally".

A very good way of defending what was an unfair election result

Truther
May 20, 2013 07:27pm

just one liner for you "mind your own business." It was never a fair election, we will continue to fight for justice like other nations did in the past. Keep your opinion to yourself, and I cant even believe that this newspaper provides, an unknown person like you, a forum to mislead people

Mushtaq Khan
May 20, 2013 08:01pm

Imran Khan sahib,

Making promises and then implementing them are 2 different things. I for one never supported you or members of PTI. However, we in KPK are fair minded people. They put their faith in you and the majority elected you. Since the people of our province voted for you, you have the opportunity keep your part of the bargain. I will also give you benefit of the doubt and see if you will live up to your promises. Punjabi voted for Punjabi, Baloch voted for Baloch and PPP has kept its majority in Sindh but the people of KPK went out of the norm and elected you.

You got what you wanted. Just keep one thing in mind. The people of this province never forget anything good or bad happens to them. If you kept your part of the bargain and delivered what you promised, you will be their’ friend forever. And if you made them false promises just to win the election, they will never forgive you.

The two biggest issues this province is encountering now are terrorism and corruption. You never talked about any “non-popular” issues such as these two. I know you said you are going to deal with them. However, you never explained your strategy on how are you going to address these two.

As for now, you have our blessings. We are waiting to see if you are as good in governing as you were in campaign rhetoric than you deserved to be called a true leader. I personally have many serious doubts, not only in your leadership, but in the leadership of the people you picked to represent you. However, I will keep my eyes and mind open for now. I wish I am wrong on my instinct. I wish you prove me and my doubts wrong. After all, we all want our province, and our country as a whole, to be peaceful and free of corruption.

You wanted the people of KPK to trust you by electing you, they made you the winner. This is now up to you to make good on your promises.

You just want to talk the talk? Or you want to walk the walk?

Abdullah Niazi
May 20, 2013 09:02pm

@nabidad: Agree. IK wanted people to dump dynastic corrupt politicians like Sharifs of Punjab & Zardaris of Sindh. Evidently most of the Punjabis did not pay attention, they wanted to continue with status quo. IK did not lose, Pakistan did

Em Moosa
May 20, 2013 10:00pm

@Farooque: It was a dame fact in the world cup final that because of IK's arrogance and dictatorial attitude the whole team jointly decided not to play the final under his captaincy and they requested Javed Miandad to lead the team. But Javed with his great character pacified all the members of the team and requested them to play under IK. This man is still not changed much. How you can expect from him a leadership qualities of national status. It could be that reason and by keeping all that happenings in his mind that while speaking after receiving the world cup he did not give any credit to any team member or to the team spirit but he was talking about his passion for his hospital which was his personal project and no team member had any interest with his personal properties.

Yemeen Zuberi
May 20, 2013 10:48pm

Imran looks more sincere than Bhutto; but he is absolutely not a politician as Bhutto was. We need politicians to run the affairs. It is good for the country that Imran will remain in the opposition. Bhutto was a professional politician, he was doomed because he did not have a strong opposition. Nawaz is also a mature politician, he and his party can retain the driving seat for many years. In fact Nawaz deserved to be elected as PM this time.