The return of Imran Khan? | The Express Tribune
Things are going well for Imran Khan; this performance can be considered as outstanding and a game changer for PTI
. Everyone delivered their verdict in a very high election with 20 seats and in a stunning performance. For both the Pakistan Muslim League- Nawaz (PML-N) and the experts, Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) ended up winning 15 seats. Normally this wouldn’t be considered a great performance as PTI appears to have lost 25% of the seats it had previously won in previous elections.
This is not a normal time, however, as the survival of Hamza Shahbaz’s government depends on winning at least 10 seats, which makes the stakes much higher. Second, and more importantly, 11 of those seats were won by independent candidates in the 2018 election, who subsequently joined PTI through the personal effort of Jehangir Tareen. In other words, these defectors have their own substantial vote bank in these constituencies and so it is expected that PTI will actually struggle to win even a handful of seats in the election. this number.
The third factor is that during 2018, the Pakistani establishment actively supported PTI, which was completely absent this time around. Although the establishment poses no obstacles for PTI, at the same time the party is essentially its own and is fighting its own enemies on the ground who have government machinery.
Due to the above factors, this performance can be seen as stellar and a game changer for the party, not only for its immediate prospects in Punjab but also for the upcoming general election. PTI won the seat literally. Some political commentators have rightly said that for the first time Imran Khan has truly become a leader and is in a very good position to win the next general election. Some even predicted a two-thirds majority.
So how did this happen? I think the reasons have to do with the interplay between the existing polarization in society, the nature of Imran’s own support base, the way he was ousted from power, and his story. resonated with his base. In addition, PTI lobbied heavily, leveraging its employees as well as its huge social media footprint much more effectively than PML-N. Its leadership is also more committed than PML-N, which sometimes seems to take things for granted. Furthermore, the timing of Imran’s overthrow proved costly for the PML-N-led government as it had to make difficult economic decisions that, although economically necessary, were detrimental. politically.