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PDM -3 Vs and 3 Ys

PDM’s vacuity tries to conceal hypocrisy as well. If the allegation of the
2018 polls being wholly rigged be taken as true, was the PPP’s
victory in Sindh also the result of fabrication?

By Javed Jabbar | December 2020


One equates the 3 letters - ”PDM “- with 3 Vs which stand for Venom, Vitriol and Virulence. Singly or together, these 3 qualities describe the obvious thoughts, spoken words and visible attitude of PDM leaders, especially Maryam Nawaz, Bilawal Bhutto-Zardari and Maulana Fazlur Rahman about Imran Khan and the PTI ‘s rule. The 3 Ys are the common last letter for the 3 attributes of PDM. These are predictabilitY, vacuitY and irresponsibilitY.

To see, hear and sense the intense hostility of the 3 individuals against the country’s Prime Minister causes considerable disquiet --- because it reveals more about those who emit the vituperation than it does about their target.

There is little sign of balance and moderation. And even if PTI, NAB, FIA, the courts, and the military have all conspired to persecute the 3 persons named here, and / or their relations and colleagues, the snarling and the sneering exposes a nastiness that repels more than it engages. And even if the PTI did almost the same between 2008 and 2018, the viciousness of 2020 cannot be justified.

Comprising 11 political parties, the Pakistan Democratic Movement was launched in September 2020 with a 24-point manifesto. But it’s principal aim is to oust the PTI Government at the Centre and in Punjab and KPK. Because in PDM’s view, these governments have been put into power through allegedly rigged elections held in 2018 and facilitated by the military.

By holding largely-attended public meetings in Gujranwala, Karachi and Quetta, and further meetings to follow, the PDM claims to represent the overwhelming majority of citizens. Continuing its charges of rigging, the PDM has also declared that the Gilgit-Baltistan polls held on 15th November 2020 in which PTI emerged as the single largest party were also manipulated by the same elements and are therefore rejected.

Of the 3 Ys, let’s start with the first one: predictabilitY . What’s new? For the past 32 years, starting with 1988 when party-based elections were held for the first time after a gap of 11 years which was caused by the Ziaul Haq phase, every single elected government has been confronted by its opposition within 2 years of taking charge. Every time, one of the main grounds is dubious vote-counts. Nawaz Sharif --- with the support of the establishment and President Ghulam Ishaq Khan --- undermined Benazir Bhutto’s first government of 1988-1990. By the end of 1992/early 1993, former adversaries --- Ghulam Ishaq Khan and Benazir Bhutto --- became allies to remove Nawaz Sharif in April 1993. Despite the Supreme Court restoring the ousted Premier, the opposition paralyzed it and Benazir Bhutto returned to office in October 1993. Nawaz Sharif took less than 2 years to start a campaign to oust her second government. This led to her dismissal in November 1996. Even before the military intervention of 12th October 1999, Benazir Bhutto and others were calling for the removal of Nawaz Sharif’s second government. And when it happened, the ouster was widely welcomed by the opposition. Even during the 9-year rule of Pervez Musharraf and 3 Prime Ministers --- Zafarullah Jamali, Choudhry Shujaat and Shaukat Aziz --- there were intermittent calls for their ouster with Musharraf’s blunders in 2007 and the lawyers’ movement, ratcheting up the temperature.

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javed jabbar

The writer is an author of several books, and a former Senator and Federal Minister. He can be reached at:

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