LUMS Professor and an Imran Khan (IK) apologist. By Mansoor Hamid,Professor at LUMS

LUMS Professor and an Imran Khan (IK) apologist. 

Mansoor Hamid




– No matter what happens from here on in, I would always believe that IK is arguably one of the greatest living Pakistanis for what he has done in sports, social work and then politics. His talent charisma, perseverance, integrity and accomplishments outshine all of his peers and he can rightfully claim to have left a lasting impression on a couple of generations.
Supporting IK is not easy. He is definitely obstinate, perhaps not politically shrewd, does not articulate his vision well enough and is most likely not a democrat at heart. Is he the best politician around, most definitely not. Is he the best leader that we have had in a long time, hell yea. And he has proved time again in his career(s) that he will not be the leader you want him to be. Like it or not, he will be the leader than he thinks he should be.

We (IK Supporters) realize fully well his shortcomings and we are not crazy or delusional to support him. We support IK not because of him, we support him because of us. There is not a thought as ghastly as the thought that my son will be ruled by the sons of shareefs, zardaris and maulanas. It absolutely rips my heart out.

And that is why many people like me who had never voted before in our lives, made the effort to support IK by actively going out and voting for him. All of my friends who have their allegiances with other parties, how many of you have gone out to vote? That’s right – Not many. But that is not a problem because these parties are so popular that they are going to win anyways (see something wrong here?). I know thousands of people traveled from Manchester, New York and Dubai to vote for IK because they knew he will need each and every one of those votes. This vote is different because it matters…to us and to IK.

So next time you unleash the keyboard warrior, please also have the moral courage to go out and vote for your party and attend their processions. Sitting on the sidelines will not help anybody and in anycase we need good people in every party if we need to change our fortunes. For all others, get your immigration papers sorted because the future is anything but bright.

The elections do not belong to IK, NS, PTI or PML. I do not care if IK loses more seats in a re-count. Elections belong to the people of Pakistan and specially the tax-payers who funded these elections. And they are demanding justice and reform. So what if they are in a minority, so are the tax-payers.

Can the government, as a beneficiary, provide electoral justice and accountability? With the plethora of political (60+ family members) appointments in ministries, judiciary, police and civil services the chances are bleak. There is still no FIR for the 14 shot dead by the law enforcement agencies.

We need electoral reform and we need expat votes. We also need desperately for 100% of urban population to vote and attend processions of the parties they support. We all know what you oppose? I would like to know what you stand for? And perhaps this would make us realize that the leadership choices are very limited to match our lofty aspirations.
As someone said already: “we keep private guards, drink bottled water, avail private medi-care, send our kids to private schools, buy generators and UPSs to have electricity at homes and offices, the list goes on ”. We do not need IK to tell us that we are not getting good value for our tax money.
Wrong tactics by IK. What guarantee do we have that this march would work out for the better? Well, our future is not pay-per-view and there is no money back guarantee. We can be sure that his agenda will not endear him to the beneficiaries of the status-quo. So yes, he will lack support from the power brokers.
Here is hoping that next time a candidate will think twice before barging into a ladies polling station to dictate how votes should be cast. Here is also hoping that next time when we face an injustice, we will come out on the streets in numbers and demand our right.
They (NS, Z, MFR) will always stand with each other. Will we ever stand for each other? It is clearly more important for us to defend our leaders than defend ourselves.

‘Youngsters dancing to national tunes’ is not zina. And memes showing our leadership as dogs, transsexuals, beggars, etc are not classy.

Mob: a large crowd of people, especially one that is disorderly and intent on causing trouble or violence.

Anarchy: absence of government and absolute freedom of the individual, regarded as a political ideal.

Red Zone: what red zone? There is no red zone around White House, 10 Downing Street or Lok Sabha. What use is democracy if common people cannot have access to the Parliament of ‘People’ of Pakistan and the Supreme Court of ‘People’ of Pakistan?

Protests: We might disagree in principle, but must RESPECT the people who have decided to leave their comforts to stand up for their rights. If anything, we do not protest hard enough to demand our rights. Scrap the military parades on Independence Day; we should bring the system to a halt once every year to demonstrate that the people of this country are the source of all power. That would put some fear of God and fear of People in the hearts of our leadership.

I have not seen anyone win an argument or a war on facebook. Yes we are stubborn and yes facebook is not real life.

Mansoor Hamid

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