Imran Khan and Asma Jahangir

Published: January 31, 2013

ISLAMABAD: Imran Khan has expressed the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf’s (PTI) reservations on the possible nomination of Asma Jahangir as a caretaker prime minister. Mr Khan finds it convenient to forget that at the time when he was shamefully mollycoddling an usurper of the Constitution, Ms Jahangir was bravely protesting the coup d’état. Mr Khan may suffer from memory loss but not all in Pakistan do. He objects that Ms Jahangir  “is too close to the PPP” and that “she has issued statements against the PTI and the SC”. One wonders if that is the criteria laid down in the Constitution to determine the choice of a caretaker prime minister?

Let us consider Mr Khan’s objections regarding Ms Jahangir at face value. Is Mr Khan suggesting that someone who is close to and favours the PTI should be the caretaker prime minister? Why would the other parties accept such a person? Issuing statements against the Supreme Court would be of concern only if it could be established that the statements were politically motivated. Can Mr Khan and his party demonstrate that in this case? Ms Jahangir’s actual stand with regard to the Supreme Court is recorded in history with her bold and unwavering position during the movement for restoration of the judiciary. It seems that Mr Khan wants all of us to be in a state of amnesia and pounce on unsubstantiated claims that Ms Jahangir is somehow against the Supreme Court. By doing so, he is not highlighting her weaknesses but merely giving prominence to his own. It appears that he is confusing criticism with critique.

Mr Khan’s dithering on issues of national importance, such as violent faith-based extremism is also reflective of a confused state of mind. Ms Jahangir’s bold, courageous and unambiguous stand against the forces of extremism tearing this country apart, is a far cry from the obfuscating and misleading position that Mr Khan takes in this respect.

What is the bottom line here? Does Mr Khan seriously believe that Ms Jahangir can somehow facilitate the PPP to get re-elected? In the presence of the most vibrant media in Pakistan’s history, the independent judiciary and the supposed seven million vigilant PTI supporters, that seems to be a highly unlikely prospect. Or is the PTI afraid that Ms Jahangir may actually turn out to be neutral and facilitate free and fair elections? That leads us to the most important question of all: who is the PTI actually relying on to win the elections — the millions of its supposed voters or forces that can manipulate elections? Because Ms Jahangir may certainly be an insurmountable obstacle in the path of the latter.

Hasan Bin Hamza

Published in The Express Tribune, January 31st, 2013.

Reader Comments (25)

  • kashif
    Jan 31, 2013 - 12:54PM

    If a person regularly issues statements against a party, you cannot call that person neutral no more. This is exactly what Imran Khan said. He never said that person should be close to PTI. wrong analysis by the writer. I strongly disagree.

    Recommend

  • ali
    Jan 31, 2013 - 1:28PM

    While Khan backs the judiciary Asma jehangir is pro government.Asma Jehangir is pro-

    US and believes that War on Terror is the only solution left for this country.I would certianly

    agree with Mr Imran Khan that she is baised.

    Recommend

  • Arsalan
    Jan 31, 2013 - 2:17PM

    Caretake PM should be neutral. Someone all parties are comfortable with, I think it’s a genuine demand. Clearly Asma is not a popular figure among PTI fellows and many commoners on the road, trust me.

    Recommend

  • Sarcastic
    Jan 31, 2013 - 2:20PM

    Thanks for wasting my time!

    Recommend

  • zoahub
    Jan 31, 2013 - 2:21PM

    Another anti PTI and pro US slave article

    Recommend

  • GH
    Jan 31, 2013 - 2:22PM

    Why don’t we consider a Person who has a less Political image. Considering this Election as most important in History, why not make it more Free n Fair election. Lets part away conflict intrest. If Asma Jahangir is the right Option than What is wrong with Dr AQKhan?

    Recommend

  • MAD
    Jan 31, 2013 - 2:25PM

    Imran Khan just said that she is partial towards the PPP. A caretaker govt is supposed to be completely neutral. Im sure we can find some fine people with impeccable track records on whom there are no such accusations. Not taking anything away from Ms. Jehangir here but just to ensure that elections are absolutely fair and no bias is suspected perhaps she isnt the ideal candidate.

    Recommend

  • Wardah
    Jan 31, 2013 - 2:25PM

    @ali:
    Well said Ali. They can find better than that

    Recommend

  • Aslam
    Jan 31, 2013 - 2:28PM

    Writer needs to understand that saying Asma is too close to PPP does not mean PTI wants a Caretaker which can Favour PTI. It means it should be impartial. Asma may be acceptable to some parties but she is certainly not acceptable to most as well. Also, It is the right of PTI to show the reservation on someone which alot of Pakistani People think that is not suitable for the role of Care Taker PM.

    Regarding the vibrant media, I am sorry to say this is the same media which gives 4 days un-interrupted coveriage to TUQ. This media was also there during all the bi-polls but no corruption / rigging has stopped.

    Another thing is that if PTI had the gutts to say that they don’t want Asma to be the care taker PM, why PML-N and PPP are denying that they are considering here or had discussion on this. Ch. Nisar one day said that these are probable names but the next day Kh. Asif said that there is no such confirmation or discussion. These names were mere suggestions.

    Please don’t be biased and speak the truth.

    Recommend

  • qasim
    Jan 31, 2013 - 2:41PM

    well naturally how can pti accept her she has been attacking pti in the past. She always tries to find some connection between the agencies and pti.

    Recommend

  • Ali
    Jan 31, 2013 - 2:48PM

    wrong analysis, negative thinker,

    Recommend

  • Umer
    Jan 31, 2013 - 2:50PM

    It is not surprising anymore to read articles / publications such as this….i hardly hear these writers comment about the lack of governance, corruption in the state, political clowns in the country and their main focus somehow remains to be Imran Khan….who in my humble opinion is the cleanest of the lot…..has done something for pakistan by building up the 1st charity run modern cancer hospital……getting a top univesity in an underdeveloped area…..
    and above all has never held any public office to even be criticised for what he says or not……i find readers such as the above against change / progressing Pakistan….

    Recommend

  • Matin A Khan
    Jan 31, 2013 - 3:27PM

    With great people there’s no difference between principle and the person.

    Recommend

  • Ch. Allah Daad
    Jan 31, 2013 - 6:34PM

    Excellent analysis. The PTI is seeing writing on the wall. It has no place to hide now.

    Recommend

  • Kamran Paracha
    Jan 31, 2013 - 9:39PM

    The last lines are interesting “who is the PTI actually relying on to win the elections — the millions of its supposed voters or forces that can manipulate elections?”

    It’s absurd how anyone who rises against the status quo is termed as someone who is working with “forces”. The writer is clearly someone who has close ties to PPP. In reality, Asma Jahangir indeed has close ties to PPP and she has a soft corner towards them. Caretaker government should be neutral – period.

    Lastly, despite the “vibrant media” and “independent judiciary”, PPP was able to destroy our economy. I am totally with Imran Khan on this – in anyway the elections should not be compromised, even if there is 1% chance.

    Recommend

  • Abid Khan
    Feb 1, 2013 - 3:59AM

    This writing is completely biased and absurd. ET should look at the standards and should enforce it. Pathetic to hear such a biased approach here against PTI

    Recommend

  • usman
    Feb 1, 2013 - 5:51AM

    Wastage of time to read the article, nothing but just praise of Ms Asma Jangir. She has close ties with PPP and has visited Nawaz Sharif several times. Mr Khan is not asking for neutral caretaker for himself, but for better elections and better Pakistan.

    Recommend

  • Mani
    Feb 1, 2013 - 6:35AM

    Asma Jehangir is very opinionated and has been very vocal about her criticism of SC and has a soft corner for PPP. In such a situation, her name should never have been suggested as a neutral person for role of a caretaker PM. ,

    Recommend

  • Umair Zafar Malik
    Feb 1, 2013 - 7:20AM

    “Is Mr Khan suggesting that someone who is close to and favours the PTI should be the caretaker prime minister? Why would the other parties accept such a person? ”
    No, he never suggested that, and No party would accept that. Similarly PTI will not accept a care-taker PM that has strong ties with PPP. Why cant it be a someone neutral?

    Recommend

  • Mirza
    Feb 1, 2013 - 5:18PM

    @Ch. Allah Daad:
    Time to grow up Chaudhry Saab!

    Recommend

  • Rashid
    Feb 2, 2013 - 2:17AM

    If PTI has problem with Asma Jahangir, we can always opt for Hafeez Sayed, or Haqani among other notables.

    Recommend

  • Ali Khan
    Feb 3, 2013 - 12:17PM

    To all my paki brothers and sisters pleas try to understand the that who is behind all this
    Trust me for shour gadari and the gang of twelve theafs is behind this now all loted money
    He is gona use for regging in election dont let them foul you this time this messeage is for
    All my brothers and sisters of pakistan that we have to save the mother land of ours from all
    Theas evil people.

    Recommend

  • Nawaz Sharif
    Feb 3, 2013 - 12:52PM

    Now this is just lame.

    Recommend

  • elementary
    Feb 3, 2013 - 5:49PM

    yes lame .

    Recommend

  • Matin A Khan
    Feb 3, 2013 - 6:51PM

    When society comes to value one child more truly, we shall have, for every community, a country homestead where that child can go, who needs special encouragement. It will not be a penal place, nor even a place of reform, but it will be held out, rather, as a dear delight and a reward. But when society values the child enough, and realises what the child means to the State, and what the home means to the child, it will provide even better, for then the child will have, in its own home, all that a home should give…. There will be safety. There will be the chance to be well, to be pure; room to grow and breathe in; the sacred privacy of the home circle–all those things that are the birthright of every child. And there will be, in some way, beauty, to which the soul of the child naturally turns, as does a plant to the light.

    Recommend

More in Letters