Accountability and Equality : The Iron Stance of Prime Minister Imran Khan

Since the news broke out regarding the Prime Minister’s visit to United States of America, the entire political body and media have been on the edge. From the opposition trying to ridicule it as a rumor of a failed attempt to the bittersweet assumptions and anticipation laden predictions, we saw a multitude of possibilities and premonitions about this visit. The hot topic for all media channels was the one on one meeting with President Donald Trump along with the rigorous comparison between Imran Khan and the previous Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif.

Amongst all buzz, the delegation of Pakistani Prime Minister landed in the USA and accompanying him was the Military Leadership in form of the Chief of Army Staff General Bajwa. This too provided the opposition with opportunity to imply the lack of democracy in Imran Khan’s title bearing.

None of this however was fruitful in showcasing lack of trust in the Pakistani leadership. The demonstration was which happened the previous night in the form of a houseful stadium of American Pakistanis showing up to hear Imran Khan’s address before he would proceed to meet the American President. The massive turnout in combination with the enthusiasm of the crowd was one of a kind event in the history of USA-Pakistan ties.

Imran Khan’s own body language exuded confidence, although there was smug edge to it. From the almost hour long speech, he was definitely elated by the extraordinary turnout and the trust of his people.

Beginning in his casual way with the name of Almighty Allah, he expressed gratitude and went on to discuss the current situation of Pakistan and the flaws in our system and the individual person. He emphasized on the importance of meritocracy and commented on the immensely successful examples we as a nation can take guidance from. The speech covered every possible aspect of PTI’s manifesto and yes at places turned boring because a lot of the material already said and heard in the infamous PTI Jalsas was repeated. Imran Khan however made a point to include every group of the society, ensuring he wants to take Pakistan to a place where law does not operate based on status quo principles and human rights and economic development are the core concerns of the state.

A major stance and one I want to discuss in detail is his blatant announcement in the face of the strongest political military power of the world and everyone listening of no compromise on the freedom and authority of Judiciary, National Accountability Bureau and absolutely no flexibility in the process of accountability that has by now taken an exceptional lot of PML-N and PPP along with their chairmen and the senior officials to jail. Imran Khan did not shy away from reinstating that no bribe, no donation and absolutely no recommendation from anyone will hinder or slow let alone stop the state from bringing those guilty of corruption to justice. Casually ridiculing the statements of his opponents he officially revealed that there has been an immense amount of international pressure on his government to cut a deal and let the accused and acquitted go. Specifically pointing to the Royal pressure from middle east, indirectly he unveiled the ulterior motives with which the Saudi and Qatari title holders came to Pakistan.

He also clarified that the entire process is beyond is control and will, the judiciary and NAB having the real authority which they are practicing freely and transparently. Imran Khan’s words gave away that he did have the power and opportunity to lead everyone into a N.R.O but he is not willing to do that and never will concede to the demands of this either. The bravery in his tone made it evident he has full support of his own civil and military leadership to allow the corruption purging process to pave its own way. He did however avoid a detailed take on the economic situation Pakistan is suffering considering the aim of this visit is to project better economic relationships and lessen the pace on security and military discussions and collaborations.

Secondarily, not only the Prime Minister but also the minister of Foreign Affairs Shah Mehmood Qureshi and the entire supporting body of Imran Khan took a clear cut stance regarding the maintenance of integrity and equality in the meetings, dialogues and dealing with the American leadership. This is a very strong step forward for Pakistan who has till now kept a passively submissive position in the face of international admonishing and demands. Emphasizing that any and all discussions will be made keeping in mind mutual interests and dignity. It was made clear that ‘do more’ is no longer an option and Pakistan as a nation declines to take the losses and fall for policies that have led to unrest and has continuously been a source of instability to Pakistan. Imran Khan also assured everyone that whatever is discussed will be discussed openly and transparently, that he is not interested in negotiating and dealing behind closed doors.

Expressing the hope for positive outcomes of the meetings with American leadership, Imran Khan definitely left an impression of expecting great progress in the civil military ties with USA, in enhancing the economic friendship and also restoring Pakistan’s image as a politically more strengthened state willing to sit on the table for the sake of peace and prosperity of both nations and the entire region however only on the terms of give and take, equality and mutual benefits.

Based on the address, the Pakistani media has predicted a good outcome and resolution of many issues that require help and moderation. Although the analysis of this speech will be done in detail by all the media powerhouses, right now they are focusing on covering every possible aspect of the meeting that is to take place between President Donald Trump and Prime Minster Imran Khan.

Abeera Dilawar


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