The Care Taker Govt To ‘Take Care’ Pakistan…

The Government of Pakistan has dissolved the National Assembly in a well considered decision. 

Since the assembly has been dissolved three days before the completion of its term, an additional time of 30 days has been given to hold the next election as per rules. 

However, experts say that this time the elections can hardly be held even within this time limit. 

The reason is that the latest census figures have been formally approved. That is, now it has become a constitutional requirement that according to the new figures of the census, the elections should be conducted only after completing the work of delimitation. 

The Election Commission will need an additional time of about two months for this. After the dissolve of the National Assembly, Prime Minister Shahbaz Sharif has been asked to hold office till a new arrangement is in place, but all eyes are now on who gets the responsibility of caretaker prime minister. 

This time the Caretaker PM will have more responsibility than usual for which there are many obvious reasons.

First of all, it will take about six months even if there is no additional delay in holding fresh elections and taking over the office of the elected government. 

Secondly, all this is happening at a time when Pakistan is passing through an unprecedented economic crisis. 

In such a situation, this caretaker government may have to take some tough decisions even at the risk of becoming unpopular. 

It will be interesting to see how much care is taken of this national need while appointing the caretaker Prime Minister. 

In other words, whether a person with deep economic understanding can be appointed on this post or not.

Third and the most important thing is that just a few days before the start of this election exercise, Imran Khan, who is said to be the most popular opposition leader of Pakistan, was not only sentenced to three years in jail in the Toshakhana case, but was also barred from contesting elections for five years.

There has also been a ban on holding any other post. Although Imran Khan is fighting both legal and political battles against it. 

This decision of the lower court has been challenged in the High Court where the matter is going on. 

So one thing will have to be seen that till when, how much and what kind of relief they get from the higher courts.

As far as the political fight is concerned, the kind of atmosphere of protest that Imran supporters had created in the country at the time of the previous arrest, could not be created in spite of Imran’s appeal at the time of this second arrest. 

However, the government’s activism and the action taken against the leaders of Imran’s party also have a role behind this. 

In such a situation, the question will remain as to how democratic the election conducted by excluding the most popular opposition leader from the contest will be considered and how far its results will provide stability to Pakistan.

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