And The Winner Is..

pak1.jpgFor centuries, countries around the globe have revolted against dictatorship, be it a particular person, the church or the entire Government. On Thursday, a six year long term of dictatorial rule in Pakistan ended with the Pakistan People’s Party emerging as the single largest party with 82 seats.The entire world, now, has turned its attention to Pakistan, as the two oppositions formed a coalition this week. Islamabad witnessed PPP and PML-N holding crucial parleys, which ended on the decision of a merger. The decision was taken a day after the PPP’s co-chairman Asif Zardari ruled out his nomination for the Prime Minister. Both the parties have sealed their victory with the announcement at a press conference held in the capital on Thursday night. The parties have agreed on the Judiciary’s independence and the parliament’s sovereignty. Zardari’s PPP and Sharif’s PML-N combined together have 153 seats with 258 out of 272 constituencies in the Pakistan National Assembly. The parties are due to have talks on issues ranging from the nomination of the PM post to the reinstatement of judges sacked by Musharaff in November’07 during the emergency. They also intend to revive the 1973 Constitution, which deals with the Presidential powers to dismiss elected governments.With the opposition joining hands, the President is still adamant on not resigning. Sharif clarified himself again by demanding the resignation of the former general.The President after being let down by his hand picked ruling party PML-Q, is trying to build up relations with both the opposition parties. He has been trying to mend ways with Sharif and at the same time having talks with Zardari telling him not to join hands with PML-N.Meanwhile, the US and the UK Governments have suggested to the winning party to sustain Musharraf’s reign and not demand for his resignation as it will bring chaos in the current political system of the state. With the majority of people saying that this might be the end for Musharaff’s political journey, researchers feel that this might be the point when his role will strengthen further. Observers say that the alliance between the PPP and PML-N might not last long if key issues are not discussed. The announcement made by the PML-N President Sharif to the PML-Q MP’s asking them to come back to their mother party has filled doubt in many minds within the two parties. There are people in the PPP who are questioning Sharif’s intention and doubting he might play a game by trying to garner some sort of an alliance with the help of smaller parties. Sharif’s party is most likely to form a provincial government in Punjab, which is said to be the most important province politically. With the army and the Pakistani bureaucracy in his hand, the President has taken a back seat in all this. Power is the most influential drive of all. It’s time to wait and watch what is in store for Pakistan politics now.

Aakanksha Ahluwalia

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