Ayaz Amir: Nawaz Sharif Is ‘Impulsive’, Unwise

Ayaz Amir: Nawaz Sharif Is ‘Impulsive’, Unwise

This is a biting critique from Ayaz Amir against his own party and, indirectly, at Mr. Nawaz Sharif’s stubborn nature and myopic politics, which have resulted in turning a large political party, the PML-N, into a little more than a cry baby.


Friday, 6 February 2009.

The News International.


CHAKWAL, Pakistan—The PML-N is the alternative to the PPP, with a stake in the present dispensation because of its government in Punjab, the country’s largest province and the source of much of Pakistan’s anguish since the country’s birth. What is it up to?

Exile and the long night of the Musharraf era should have tempered the PML-N leadership, taught it a measure of wisdom and enabled it to see the larger canvas instead of just the trees. It is a moot point whether any of this has happened because the party or rather its leadership has not been able to get over the well-ingrained tendency of tilting at windmills — imagining them to be monsters on the horizon but which turn out to be windmills.

It has espoused the lawyers’ cause and the cause of the restoration of the judges deposed by Gen Pervez Musharraf. But espousing a cause is one thing, strangling oneself with it quite another. The PML-N has tightly tied the judges’ issue round its neck, to the extent where it seems that it only has a one-point agenda.

Impulsive as ever, the party has declared support for the lawyers’ long march and the sit-in in front of the Supreme Court on March 9. Several questions arise. Will the agitating lawyers be able to attract a large enough crowd to force the government’s hand? And is the government likely to capitulate — for the restoration of Iftikhar Chaudhry and the other deposed judges would amount to capitulation — before the lawyers? Failure on these counts would rub off on the PML-N. Its public standing would be diminished.

This is an extract from Mr. Amir’s weekly column published in The News International. He can be reached at winlustATyahoo.com


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