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Advice to Imran Khan

Published Jun 12, 2013 08:30am


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MY advice to the PTI is to focus on the positive. Unfortunately, the PTI’s campaign had focused too much on the negative to start with. They tried to generate a ‘tsunami’ based on allegations against the PPP and the PML(N) even though their own technical agenda was excellent and could have generated a lot of support on its own merit.

It is unreasonable to say that the MQM wins Karachi only due to violent strategies. The reason why they win elections in Karachi is that no other political party offers the Urdu-speaking Karachi voter a choice.

The MQM was formed by the poorest Urdu-speaking urban class of Karachi. Unfortunately, over the time as the grievances of this class continued unaddressed and the state tried to label the MQM as just a violent ethnic group, they did become increasingly violent. However, they were not then and are not now the only armed violent group in Karachi.

Pervez Musharraf tried to bring them back in the mainstream; perhaps, for his own personal interests and gave them some responsibility in Karachi. The MQM did deliver to the extent they could, keeping in view their structural, educational and skill weaknesses.

Imran Khan initially started a barrage against the MQM but soon realised that his voice did not get any traction in Karachi. Then he entered into a peace agreement with them and was able to get the educated Karachi voter to vote for him. This way he got a significant number of votes in Karachi though not enough to win him seats.

This was the correct strategy. He will do better if he continues with it. He should not revert to his original negative campaign against the MQM which the Karachi voter still looks upon as their second-best option.

Imran Khan has to realise he cannot win urban Sindh without the Urdu-speaking voters irrespective of the shift in the ethnic balance in Karachi. He must be willing to solve the problems of the people of Karachi, not only of the affluent amongst them but also the poor of Orangi, Golimar, Liaquatabad, Lyari and New Karachi.

He has to show his willingness to stand up to sectarian killings in Karachi, and he has to demonstrate that he would side with them when terror from Taliban quarters and other affiliated criminals strikes them.

He cannot be an apologist for these groups. Most important of all, he cannot be selective in his criticism against criminal groups and violent strategies. He needs to demonstrate to the Karachi voter that he is free of ethnic bias.

ALI HASHIM Fairfax, Virginia, US

Stop the blame game

THIS is with reference to your editorial ‘All eyes on PTI: New KP government’ (June 2). The PTI had made many promises to its voters during its election campaign like shooting down of drones (had it been able to form a government in the centre), improving the law and order situation through holding talks with Taliban, ending corruption in 90 days, doing away with VIP culture, holding local bodies’ elections in three months, etc.

Now that the PTI hasn’t been able to sweep the polls, it is demanding of the PML-N to shoot down drones in order to maintain Pakistan’s sovereignty.

Keeping this demand of the PTI in view, the PML-N could also ask the PTI as to why it is not blocking the transit route of Nato containers which are passing through Khyber Pakhtunkhwa? Before elections, the PTI had been holding demonstrations against the passage of Nato containers through Pakistani soil.

What is evident from such blame-game is that both the PML-N and the PTI are expected to lock horns in the assembly right from the very beginning.

Shooting down of drones isn’t a provincial matter; it is the job of the federal government to look after the foreign policy of the country. Let the federal government do its job.

It would be in Pakistan’s interest if both the PML-N and the PTI sit together and sort out a national policy on critical issues through meaningful dialogue.

One hopes that the establishment and the government are both on the same level as far as ownership of the war on terror is concerned, i.e., whether it is our war or the USA’s?

AIR CDRE (r) AZFAR A. KHAN Rawalpindi


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Comments (20) Closed

Zeeshan Jun 13, 2013 04:06am
I totally agree with you because no drones are gliding on our house also.
zeb Jun 13, 2013 03:52am
Not sure what it is personal post or artilce but for sure Dawn is going to lose its standard if continue to publish these kind of cheap artilcle unless goal is just to fillup pages.
Dawar Naqvi Jun 12, 2013 05:45am
Imran Khan should aboard on one ship. The PTI claimed that it is very popular in the urban areas of Karachi and Lahore. A proof of this claim was provided recently when we saw modern women come out on the streets of Lahore and Karachi and stage protest demonstrations. But in Pakhtunkhwa the PTI barred women from voting. This clears smacks of hypocrisy.
Rahi Jun 13, 2013 01:22am
probably not familiar with kpk. I belong to Mardan kpk and this time a record female voters were seen on female polling stations and that is due to Imran khan. His party mobilized women alot.
Muhammad Jun 13, 2013 04:45pm
foe heavens sake stop this vicious propaganda against PTI. Think of the future of your children and the children of this country in the hands of Nawaz Sharif, Zardari and Altaf Hussain etc
Waqar Siddiqui Jun 13, 2013 06:03am
I being a mohajir and a resident of Karachi would request the respected Air Cdre to please shift his family to Karachi and then sing the same song. I have lived in Lahore during some period of my studies and I do not think criticizing Imran Khan is going to do us good since he is not ruling Pakistan. Those who are have a track record of incompetence. Lets hope Mr. Nawaz Sharif, who like my respected Air Cdre has not borne the burnt of Karachi's situation, come forward and make Karachi as peaceful as his Lahore, if not better.
malole Jun 12, 2013 07:34am
modern women. hehhe.
Waqas Ahmad Jun 12, 2013 08:37am
Mr.Dawar Naqvi, i think you have not been to KPK during the election days. I belong to Bannu and I can assure you that most of the women in KPK did vote and that too for PTI. Its my humble request that we should not misguide people on such topics where everything seems evidently clear.
Riaz Ahmad Jun 14, 2013 01:50am
Pakistan is inhabited by the corrupt and the hypocrites; they rightly blame the politicians, but never examine themselves and the society they live in.
Tanveer Jun 13, 2013 09:54am
Dear Sir, i accept all things but explain is it possible that 170,000 vote casts in 9 hours at 300 polling station. 9 * 60=540 minutes * 300=162,000 if in one minutes one votes then it is not possible because some votes for opponents also. It is possible only as like in indian films Bhai log kartay hain.
KHI Jun 13, 2013 10:40am
Shame on you guys... since you guys are not being affected by drones you guys think it is not the top priority??? It is at least of smae importance as energy crisis. Just think for a moment what if (God Forbid) all/any of our family members get killed in those drone strikes, would the energy crisis be of the same importance to us???
Aley Jun 13, 2013 02:00pm
Please be mindful that....Nobody advises Mr. Khan and its Mr. Khan who advises rather directs every one....
G.A. Jun 12, 2013 12:11pm
PTI should focus on working with Nawaz Sharif on electricity generation which is closer to people's heart than the drone issue. Has PTI taken into account the repercussions of shooting down a US aircraft? Even mighty China decided to lose its own fighter jet by deliberately clipping the wing of an American spy plane to force it to land during Bush's term. They never shot it down.
Agha Ata Jun 12, 2013 12:15pm
There is a saying that if you were in my position physically, financially, emotionally and politically you would have done exactly what I did.
Agha Ata Jun 12, 2013 12:18pm
There is a saying that if you were in my position, physically, emotionally, financially and politically, you would have done exactly what I did.
Babar Jun 13, 2013 11:27pm
The difference between PTI and MQM is that PTI has playboy leader with senseless aggressiveness i.e. within minutes of killings of PTI worker IK declared that Altaf Hussain is a killer. MQM has served people of Karachi, people from Karachi very well know that Mustafa Kamal delivered and he was very educated ordinary MQM worker. In this article writer mentioned that MQM has weakness in education. Karachi's literacy rate is about 90%, highest number of graduates in Pakistan, most of MQM workers are from highly educated group. In 2013 ANP was replaced by PTI and mostly Pakhtoon voters and some other voters(which have sympathy because of lift falling drama) casted votes to PTI in Karachi. IK never talked in the interest of Karachi i.e. he protested against the district govt system(nazim system). This system delivered good results in Karachi.
Nadir (KPK) Jun 13, 2013 06:31pm
Air Cdre is an arm chair thinker, he can afford to sing the song he chose to sing. Why every criticism is being directed at Imran K? Is Waziristan not part of Pakistan ?When one political worker of a particular political party though sad , is murdered whole Karachi is shut down ,but lives of people of Waziristan and other parts of KPK are dispensable - we have chosen to remain quiet.
FJ Siddiqui Jun 13, 2013 06:05pm
"Then he entered into a peace agreement with them (MQM)". Can author have any documentary proof? Where is the signed draft? What were the points of agreement?
FJ Siddiqui Jun 13, 2013 06:10pm
Author should also live in Waziristan for a while and watch the drones in action if have not seen the videos recently being shared on social media
GKNasser Jun 13, 2013 06:13pm
Repercussions of shooting down drones, scares the life out of me. collateral damage in tribal area, loss of some innocent lives are less important than my electric fan running - I still can call myself a citizen of a sovereign nation ? G.A.; you certainly have your priorities straight.