Why I chose Imran Khan

Published: June 18, 2011

Should we support a man who is a proven leader who genuinely cares for the country and is not corrupt?

Imran Khan is a name that comes up often in political debates among people affiliated with Pakistan. In times of trouble many see him as a ray of hope in a jungle of darkness. Others however, have accused him of playing popular politics, not taking a stance on important issues, and – when I heard this it blew my mind – being a terrorist sympathiser.

Opinions differ (but not evenly) and though Imran Khan has tremendous support from the youth of the country, bashing his politics is also extremely popular in newspapers and the social media. I, as a convinced supporter, will break this trend and speak of the man and his party in good taste.

Firstly, I feel it is important to reintroduce the person in question.

Who is Imran Khan?

Imran Khan is known as one of the greatest cricketers of all time. His bowling and captaincy alone could individually grant him that honour, but put together with his batting as well as guiding the Pakistan cricket team to their only world cup win in 1992, they place him on number eight on ESPN’s list of Legends of Cricket, as well as in the ICC Hall of Fame and in Oxford University’s hall of fame, from where he graduated from, with degrees in Politics, Economics and Philosophy.

After losing his mother to cancer, Imran Khan founded the Shaukat Khanam Memorial Cancer Hospital with the help of donations, to help underprivileged people suffering from the deadly disease.

The hospital, which was told by certain American technocrats that it would not be able to treat more than five per cent of its patients for free, proved all odds wrong, and a decade and a half later, was recognised as a centre of excellence and the only hospital in the world that offers free treatment to 70 per cent of its patients, by the World Health Organisation (WHO).

Khan became chancellor for Bradford University and convinced them to affiliate themselves with a college he was thinking about building in Mianwali. Namal College, offers Bradford University degrees at a co-educational school, just 40 miles from where drone strikes occur.

None of these accomplishments would have been possible without the generous donations of the people of course. The fact that he raised six million dollars in a matter of months through donations for the victims of last year’s floods, shows how much the people of Pakistan trust the man and his willingness to help.

Why not Imran Khan?

So when a proven leader, who is not corrupt, forms a party focusing on the lack of justice in Pakistan, do I support him?

The easy answer is ‘yes,’ and this easy answer has become even easier given the current situation of the country. All other major political parties are directionless, corrupt, opportunists and tested. Compared to criticisms of the PMLs, MQMs and PPPs, Tehreek-e-Insaf is almost angelic – but it is criticised nonetheless.

Analysing criticism

PTI was criticised for supporting Pervez Musharraf during the referendum but later denouncing him. I was very surprised to see people had a problem with that. To me the party did what most people did. Musharraf’s 14-point agenda was brilliant and he had my vote in the referendum too, but he lost a massive number of fans because of what he did afterwards and it would have been wrong to not denounce him in the circumstances.

After lashing out at the Muttahida Qaumi Movement (MQM) for terror politics, PTI was criticised for agreeing with them on the topic of drone strikes. This is also a strange criticism in my eyes, because I think the general public opinion about drones is very clear and if two parties agree on one thing, it does not change their disagreements.

The major critics of Imran and the PTI however, talk about his solutions to terrorism, foreign policy and stance on other larger issues.

Imran Khan says that in order for terrorism to decrease, Pakistan must exit the war on terror and hence refuse US aid. His critics argue that this is indeed Pakistan’s war and that US aid is necessary. Here again, I agree with the PTI.

My contention is that Pakistan is targeted because it is assisting the United States in the war. As for whether this is our war or not, it definitely is now, but I don’t believe that it can be solved by conflict. Withdrawing from the war would reduce terrorism since we will lose the label of American agents. The tribal areas of Pakistan have a history of never losing wars and aimlessly dropping bombs on random areas from unmanned aircrafts will only result in more civilian deaths and new radicalism.

If the Americans themselves can hold direct talks with the Taliban, why is Imran Khan a sympathiser for doing the same – especially if there is clearly no other solution?

Surely the current strategy has proven to be counter-productive. Many people have no idea about the tribal areas, its people, history or culture. Imran Khan has been there and has even written a travel book on the place, and of course what he predicted eight years ago about this war, all came true. As for the money that would be lost in aid, a proper system of tax collection was proposed by the PTI where it would be made sure that tax evasion was eliminated. Given the status of Pakistan’s tax avoiding elite, I fully believe that even lowering the tax rate can increase your revenue as long as everyone pays their taxes.

Imran’s stance on everything

The final point I will make is one that I feel is very important. Recently no one has been more vocal than the PTI when it comes to opposing drone strikes, but the sit-ins and demonstrations have been termed as anti-American popular politics.

People say that Imran Khan claims to be uncompromising and fears no one, but does not stand up for the defenceless minorities and the radicalisation of society and does not speak on controversial religious issues.

First of all, in my opinion the drone strikes are a violation of international law and (despite some success in eliminating extremists) kill innocent people and increase extremism. This is a huge injustice on the innocent people of the tribal areas and protesting against it is the equivalent to showing concern, which being a citizen of this country, or simply human, you should be able to do – be it a popular stance to take.

Furthermore, Imran Khan does not claim to be anti-American. He says the two countries should have a relationship where both parties are equal, instead of Hilary Clinton coming and giving orders to our politicians.

Moving on to the issue of his stances – I think people are unaware that privately Imran Khan said that if you lose the support of the ‘right-wing’ or the ‘Islamic-class’ in the country, you will never come in power. I concur with this point, as most people would – knowing the society we live in.

Imran Khan does speak on issues regarding religious minorities but not in the same capacity as his drone stance. I recall he sided with Salmaan Taseer on the issue of Aasia Bibi, but again, not in the same amplitude. There is a specific mindset that people have that will not change overnight, but needs time, education and awareness. That is why Imran Khan takes the views that he does on such matters. This does make his critics correct in some sense regarding popular politics, but also proves his other critics wrong, who say he does not compromise.

At the end of the day we all have a responsibility. We can bash a particular person who is trying to help and maybe deflect some votes away from him, or we can applaud him for what he has done for the country so far, create awareness about it, and give suggestions to improve any shortfalls we see to improve his ideas further.

In Imran Khan, we have a social visionary and a legend for the country. His purpose and reason for being in politics is to see a better Pakistan and to ensure justice for all citizens.

We have a choice: support, vote and help Khan, or take our ailing country to the same old doctors that put her in this condition in the first place.

I’ve made my choice, maybe you should too.

Abu Bakr

AbuBakr Agha

A software engineer in Islamabad. He tweets @AB_Agha (twitter.com/AB_Agha) and blogs at www.elucidations.org

The views expressed by the writer and the reader comments do not necessarily reflect the views and policies of The Express Tribune.

  • Fahad Raza

    Great Read Abubakr..
    I think for people to understand politics is like that shouldn’t be about compromising even if national security comes at stake.. If someone is telling something different demonise him by combing his life for any thing, even if Tweeting pic of his own body. Excavate his past deeds. And be warned they will come up in the names of Sita white etc etc, again
    The media pundits don’t want any party to make up ties with any party just stay separate don’t mix. Further more while everyone can tell about his “supposedly support of talibans” but nobody can report that he actually met one.
    I think what Imran khan missing is his some good candidates o show the people thats all.Recommend

  • Kaleem

    BRILLIANT.Recommend

  • ShahTaj Ali Khan

    Excellent article Sir! You thoroughly discussed all the relevant points. Keep it up.
    I’ve like other young people, made my choice for practically supporting Imran khan!Recommend

  • Informer

    You’ve summed it all up dude.. and one good point raised above is he is not actually reported to have been contacted Taliban in person by fahad. To target a person in politics is easy its just about repeating and repeating the propaganda like he sided with mushi OMG
    then with went against him
    now he is with talibans
    he is also agreeing to a terrorist party in Karachi again OMG

    that will turn his own supporters asking question….. Gee why r we with him ??….. Why did he do that???…ok I am debunking him.
    An SOP for a political destruction of an opponent.Recommend

  • Hassaan Warsi

    Such a nice change from all the IK bashing going around in media by these ‘pseudo-intellects’ on Twitter and on TV itself. This is the real picture of Imran Khan, a national hero who Pakistan must cherish and give him the respect he deserves. Despite NOT being in power, he has done so much for the nation, think of what can be achieved once he does get power. Imran Khan Zindabad! Recommend

  • Maham

    Your best piece so far.Recommend

  • Rida

    i support imran khan but i dont believe dat dis article is strong enuf to end the debate ,for a critic of imran khan dis article is extremely one sided n personal reflection of things..plz do improve on da same points wid a neutral tone so dat dey actually believe what u rite as the truth on their own not by taking it in as a spoon feeding thingRecommend

  • basit

    Excellent article..Recommend

  • Fahd

    Most of the people that bash imran khan are the elitist liberal people, who account for very little of Pakistan population, yet they have huge media coverage. These people can never be satisfied with people like Imran Khan, who do not live in a fantasy pakistan but understand the society. Imran now needs to remain focused. He will do well in the coming election.Recommend

  • Ali R

    Thank you thank you thank you AbuBakr. I’ve been meaning to write a blog piece on him for a very long time. In your previous blogs you defended him well and you have continued to do so. I am impressed. I want the critics to attack this piece. One thing you missed out in the minorities section was the journalist killings, PTI has attended and demonstrated against them several times even yesterday they spoke out against the journalist killings. He even spoke against the killings of the Chechyen women. Every single terrorist attack committed by the extremists, PTI speaks strongly against. If you watch the leadership and spokespersons of PTI on the talk shows then you will see how intelligent they are. From their spokesman on finance, Dr. Humayun Mohamd, to Professor Abassi and Naeem ul Haq and Dr. Arif Alvi. Their leadership is bright and intelligent, leaders in their fields as well as most importantly uncorrupt. What more do we want! There is absolutely NO team like this in any other party! Thanks again bro!Recommend

  • :D

    Agha, you are a genius!
    When inshallah Imran Khan comes into power, you Agha, would have played a role in saving Pakistan.
    Imran Khan ZINDABAD! PTI will sweep in the next elections inshallah, SWEEP I TELL YOU! watch out PMLs, MQMs, and PPPs.. Pakistan is changing and PTI will bring the change inshallah!
    They’ve made their choice, maybe you should too. Recommend

  • Warm

    Compelling.Recommend

  • Maulana Diesel

    Ok I have read your article and now hear this — I will not vote for PTI or Imran Khan!
    I am a Pukhtun from KP and I will never ever forgive Imran Khan’s support to the Taliban. Now I know you will say oh yeah he has never supported the Taliban but when someone is not willing to denounce in clearcut sentences the monsters that have killed thousands of my fellow Pukhtuns and Pakistani I have a big problem with that. Imran Khan also opposed the Swat operation even though the vast majority of the residents of Swat supported it and are now much happier that the Pakistani State has wrestled control back from the Taliban butchers. I do not want a leader who will bow down to tyranny!

    He will never have my vote!Recommend

  • Zoaib

    A refreshing change to read something good about Imran Khan. Nice summary. However I don’t think Imran takes “popular” stances just for the sake of getting votes. If that were so, he wouldn’t have made a slogan of “justice” which is an abstract concept as opposed to “roti kapra aur makan.” It’s the same for his stance on sovereignty. The common man is much more interested in his bread and butter and petty problems. But he still raises these issues because a leader is supposed to lead and not follow public opinion. He leads people to realize what’s important and educate, not only give them what they want, but what they need.

    So I don’t agree with this notion that he changed his stance just to satisfy public opinion. He may have changed the wording of his statements so that they are not misunderstood by any religious elements and used against him. As I recall, he was one of the few politicians who clearly condemned Qadri in an interview to this very site. Salman Taseer’s statements were misunderstood by a lot of people and an impression was given that he wanted the blasphemy law to be abolished, rather than amended. Imran didn’t want to be on either side of the debate and provided a sort of “moderating” stance so that the polarization could be reduced.

    Furthermore, if Imran ever had to change his stances based on public opinion, he would have supported the Swat operation. He was under tremendous pressure but held his own even at that time, when the whole country was in its favour, including the media.Recommend

  • Rafi

    Well said AbuBakr.
    Imran Khan and PTI’s politics appeal to me. When I started finding out about it, there were many negative stories which eventually turned out to be people’s individual perceptions and, I am sorry to say, pettiness of character.
    It is a long road to redemption and I know it will be easier if the journey is made with people of integrity who are willing to submit to the law and to sweat and toil like the next person. The current lot of “leaders” are snake oil merchants and horse theives – their time to answer for their crimes is coming!Recommend

  • Sarfraz

    “does speak on issues regarding religious minorities but not in the same capacity”…
    “also proves his other critics wrong, who say he does not compromise.”

    So basically what you are saying is that “compromising” on the most basic rights, dignity, lives, freedom, and basic tolerance for Pakistani Christians, Ahmedis, Hindus, Sikhs, atheists and so on is fine? What happened to “insaaf”? Do Pakistani Hindus or Christians or Ahmedis not deserve to be treated as human beings and equal citizens? And sorry, when exactly was the last time Imran Khan spoke about religious minorities? What is his policy on removing the hate-filled references in Islamiyat/Deeniyat textbooks to Christians and Hindus? When has he said a word against the violent hate speech against Ahmedis? Recommend

  • Humanity

    feel sorry for you .. unfortunately the is no choice as the whole orchid is toxic and rotten with maggots.Recommend

  • http://N/A Rizwan Ibnul Hasan

    For the past 45 years I have seen almost all the politicians of Pakistan at a very close range. They are all corrupt. They have taken this country for a ride to meet their evil ends. They are tax evaders, forgerers (elected on false degrees) and what not. It makes me vomit when I see them talking goody goody on T.V. channels. Imran Khan is a ray of hope for my despondency.I have been voting his party in the past elections and would continue to vote irrespective of PTI winning the election or not.Recommend

  • fmk

    Undoubtedly Imran Khan is the man and the last hope of the young generation looking forward to a better Pakistan. Of course he wouldn’t turn around things overnight and it is a herculean task to revive the Country from the mess it is presently in, but the administration of this Country would move into hands of professionals and educated people who would only strive for the betterment of the Country.Recommend

  • http://Lahore Talha

    The only issue remain with Imran khan is that he is lacking is the announcement of his team for media and Pakistan politics. Their previous election candidates are all missing and no one in the picture for their constituencies. He is a single man standing without a group and no one is their as his nature to follow.

    I wish him success and wanted that in future he must have his composite strong stance and bring some other personalities in his party that can bring a soft image for his party from the grass root level. Recommend

  • tharki leader Z

    i have made my mind , i have quit to supports PML for genuine reasons. Guys lets start the change and lets become the part of change, we ought to convience our friends abt IK , we must talk to our eleders, who are still clinging to the old politicians. we young people are 70% of the total population … want to see a prosperous pakistan ? come with IKRecommend

  • tharki leader Z

    Sarfarz:

    You mentioned those issues which can be dealt only when IK come into power. Tell me dont we have AHMEDIS ,SHEEAS ,CHRISTIAN in politics today ? if they dint bother to do anything concrete , so you are expecting IK to come and stand with minority and should leave or ignore other issues related to all pakistanis ? grow up buddy and support him, i assure you he will pay heed to the matter.Recommend

  • parvez

    This was easy for you to write because who else is there ?? It’s like Imran Khan by default as the choice of many. But does the choice of many really count ??
    In the last election 40% of the vote was bogus. This is the reality that Imran will have to contend with.Recommend

  • Bangwan Daas Churasiya

    Ironically this article (or blog) is what it is suppose to denounce..in the opposite direction. Yes, IK is a terrorist sympathiser b/c he does not denounce that those who blow themselves up in our markets and places of worship, because of the presence of banned outfits like JuD in his “dharnas” (and welcomed). He says this is not our war and this is not our people who blow themselves up. If they are not howcome he suggests cutting off american ties will solve everything? If the terrorists are not “from within us” then “they” will keep doing the same even if we untie ourselves from the US bloc. If this isnt our war and it has been imposed on us, doesn’t he think that we will still be in war, but this time against the US. How does that change the situation for Pakistan?
    Finally, personally I would have liked to see a man of his stature and always quoting examples of “democracy in the UK” to have a team, a sort of shadow cabinet of sorts? Who can atleast give a good economic policy and all other policies. But all the interviews I have seen of his in which there is a question of his team his response is we can always hire specialists. So why does he have an issue with imported technocrats like Shaukat Aziz then? As far his team is concerned, I know of atleast 1 example where he gave ticket to an ex-noon-league member in a bye-election. So his answer is to give tickets to the same people who by coming under the PTI banner are now completely pure and sin free!Recommend

  • Salim Khan Baluch

    I am for a setup where Imran and Musharraf both join hands and take this country of troubles. PPP and N-league should be banned for ever.Recommend

  • http://www.ahmedilyas.com Ahmed Ilyas

    good choiceRecommend

  • Faisal

    Its time his major support i.e. youngsters make themsevles count in the coming elections. Facebook statuses and profile pics will not be enough ! We must act now.Recommend

  • Ishrat Salim

    The more critic IK will hv , the more popular he will emerge….keep it up….Recommend

  • faraz

    What about Imran’s latest vision:

    “under a pre-planned conspiracy, our national institutions (army and ISI) are being weakened which is why the brutal incidents like the target killing in Karachi and Kharotabad are taking place.

    NRO (negotiated by ISI and army chief) was an attempt to grab power and in return subjugate Pakistan to the US and undermine ISI as well as the army.

    Nawaz Sharif is unleashing criticism on the military to realise his foreign agenda.”Recommend

  • SKR

    My vote goes to u Imran Khan!Recommend

  • Athar Goraya

    Well written article, He is my leader. I’ll vote IMRAN KHAN.Recommend

  • adnan ayubi

    Nice piece of work dude…Recommend

  • Billu

    To correct you, Imran did not graduate from Oxford with degrees in Politics, Economics and Philosophy; rather, it is just one degree: Philosophy, Politics and Economics ( called PPE ). Recommend

  • Aayan

    Awesome article Agha.. Nice effort… Recommend

  • http://www.facebook.com/saqib.wasim saqibwasim

    outstanding Recommend

  • Rehman

    Nice articulation, however you could have stressed further about IKs service for human rights. Human rights mean providing them free education (Namal college), free health (SKMH), homes and help in troubled times (flood relief by far the most generous help than any one else), bread (sasta tandoor by PTI) and so on.
    The so called human rights activists should understand that writing articles can’t help the underprivileged people but actually helping means a lot.This is what IK is doing he is actually helping but the pseudo-liberals just shout and do nothing.
    Can anyone give me an example of any other politician who is bigger champion of human rights than IK is. Recommend

  • Rehman

    @Bangwan Daas Churasiya
    Dear you just visit the PTI website and you will know where is the shadow cabinet and what qualifications they carry, just writing in the space does not mean anything. do some basic research before bashing anyone.Recommend

  • http://www.habibies.com Habibies

    Coz is the True and Brave Muslim Leader of Pakistan…!!! Long Live Imran Khan….Recommend

  • Rehman

    @Faraz
    Imran Khan was the first one who openly challenged Kiyani for Kharotabad incident, plz watch his address in Karachi dharna and other public appearances. he stongly bashed Kiani and army on that incident. The rangers incident was also strongly condemned by him watch his interview in “reporter” programme. NS has a problem with army and that is his personal vendetta that no one can carry.
    We must respect army as an institution and condemn the acts of few individuals. if there is anything wrong we must ask to correct that not carry personal vendetta against ur defence line. Recommend

  • wsd

    Very logical and convincing. In my humble view if we need to save Pakistan , we need to vote Imran/PTI. Whether he has electable candidates on his side or not we must remember that he is the Sole Spokesman of today’s Pakistan.For all those who do not want Imran I will like to knpw if they want Mr. Zardari, Shariefs, Altaf Hssain, Fazal ur Rehman or they are waiting for some angel to descend from heavens???????Recommend

  • jamil

    inshallah imran khan is great leader of Pakistan Recommend

  • http://www.facebook.com/LSR.IMRAN Sarah Khan

    Brilliant Brilliant Brilliant!!!!!Recommend

  • Ali

    @Maulana Diesel:
    you are not pakhtun from Swat, your are a gujjarti from India.People of Swat want an end to corrupt politics and 2% economic growth Recommend

  • Humaira

    Like hidden hands and farishtas trying to make Imran Khan a leader with a sole purpose to divide right wing vote in punjab to dent the vote bank of Nawaz Sharif, same some hidden hands that are not so hidden like Farishtas
    Can anyone here on Express Tribune tell us what si the policy of publishing blogs on Express Tribune Blog or an editor with his/her liking and disliking can promote anything that suits them?Recommend

  • Imran

    LoL. He is so proud of “choosing” Imran Khan. It must have got published after “The United Nations endorsed the rights of gay, lesbian and transgender people for the first time ever Friday, passing a resolution hailed as historic by the US and other backers and decried by some African and Muslim countries.” http://www.dawn.com/2011/06/18/un-backs-gay-rights-for-first-time-ever.htmlRecommend

  • Faizan

    By far, this is the BEST article to be published in the ET Blogs about Imran Khan.Recommend

  • Rehman

    @Humaira
    do you mean the same hidden hands who bestowed Nawaz Sharif with 3.5 million rupees? If yes then u r mistaken, IK can’t be driven be those hidden hands otherwise he could not have waited for 16 years so far. You know how much time it took to those hidden hands to carry NS to CMship of Punjab, may be few months.
    And off course vote bank is not some one’s personal property. Its you, me and people commenting here who vote and who have voted for NS three times already. What if now they vote for Imran Khan, and will that mean they voted due to hidden handsRecommend

  • safir

    i will say all youth of pakistan vote for him if election happend not selection (like PRESENT
    he is good man better than those crrupt and ethanic political parties leader which is even
    non islamic so go imran go i will vote u WE NEED HANGE.Recommend

  • Sajjad

    imran khan is an honest and straight forward person that’s i like him and there is no one to be selected as a future leader of pakistan………………….Recommend

  • Humayin habib

    What is IK/PTI stance on neglected Balochistan ?Recommend

  • Sahibzada Amir Ahmad

    It is quite clear that Pakistan Political Parties Could not have the capability to run this country. There are many reason which is countless. It is ridiculous when the politicians of Pakistan are playing the blame game with one another. Its mean they don’t have pain for the poor peoples of Poor Country. All the Political Parties make the manifesto to do and will do that. But all of them are totally failed to prove the development vision. We need progressive,sincere and vision full statesman. If Imran Khan wants to get rid this country from all evils he must ensure to see the person who is joining his party. There are also black sheep in the Imran Khan party. How can we justify ourselves that the affiliate of Imran Khan is Sincere and committed peoples.Recommend

  • karun singh

    we support Imran Khan always …Recommend

  • Haseeb

    Great bro..
    where are the fasi zaka supporters…this is the answer to fassi zaka and his directionless so called liberal team.Recommend

  • Maulana Diesel

    @Ali…I never said I am a Pukhtun from Swat you idiot. Go buy yourself a pair of spectacles!Recommend

  • Masooma rana

    Love it help imran khan we Ned himRecommend

  • Thinking

    This article not only has spelling mistakes: “Brandford University” but is extremely poorly written.

    The fundamental flaw the author makes is the fundamental flaw in Imran Khan’s politics. He thinks that withdrawing from the war on terror will make it go away. That is laughable. The terrorists that the ISI created will be around and wreak havoc on Pakistan till they are each killed one-by-one.

    You cannot appease them. That’s what Neville Chamberlain tried to do with Hitler and we all know how that turned out. Pakistan needs a Winston Churchill who has the courage to take on the terrorists and put them 10 feet below the ground where they belong.

    Imran Khan is just another spineless Pakistani politician lacking the moral compass (weak stand on blasphemy) or courage (lack of support for any military operation to clear terrorists out of Swat) to do anything. Mark my words – if Imran Khan ever came to power, Pakistan will be done for. Toast. Zero. Recommend

  • faraz

    @Rehman

    Then there is no consistency in his stance!

    The funny thing about Imran is that he holds PPP and Nawaz responsible for our defense and foreign policy. Who unleashed these militant groups on the poor hapless tribals? Who has turned FATA into the global hub of terrorism? Drones are bombing FATA because the strategic assets of our military establishment are based there; the poor tribals are just caught between the army, US and taliban. For the tribals, the Taliban are the army’s proxies. The root cause of terrorism is Afghan jihad and our policy of strategic depth. When Imran blames PPP for conspiring against the army, it really hurts his credibility. We are not living in the 1980s; people are not that dumb anymore. Even Imran’s supporters know that the army formulates our foreign policy and it is the main beneficiary of Pak-US relations. 90 percent money went to the army whether it’s SEATO-CENTO, Afghan Jihad or War on terror.

    I am no fan of Nawaz, but his stance over accountability of the army over Osama operation, Mehran base attack, Karachi and Kharotabad incident, and Saleem Shehzad murder are very reasonable. There is no personal vendetta in call for investigation into these blunders. Recommend

  • safir

    @kailash
    saudia has law based on reliegen secular america has sunday day off and israel
    even shutoff lights on saterday so tell me if the world is realy secular.Recommend

  • Mr X

    He condemns drone strikes but not suicide bombings,he talks of corruption but refuses to submit his DNA for a blood test.He supported military dictatorship when it came to power then opposed it when it left.what Pakistan really needs is a soft revolution similar to the one that happened in Japan where the feudal gave up their land and in exchange for other incentives not some false messiah that won a world cup after trying five times. Recommend

  • Fawad

    I’ll say it again. Ignore all the others. I have yet to see an anti Imran person make any sense. Brilliant piece again, your BEST. Keep it up.. and don’t bother about what haters think or sayRecommend

  • !Dalek

    The author along with most of Imran Khan’s supporters assume that the only thing that Pakistanis should be worried about is the drone attacks and the threat to Pakistan’s sovereignty. However, most Pakistanis (myself included) have other things on their minds besides drone attacks, i.e. their next meal. I don’t care if India, America or even Czechoslovakia conquers/ subjugates Pakistan as long as I get 3 meals a day and a assurance of a steady paying job. Atleast the traditional system run by the ‘corrupt’ politicians assures me 3 meals and a study job as long as I maintain my ‘connections’. Imran Khan on the other hand promises me a Drone free Pakistan, free from the USA’s interventionist policies… well the USA is pumping in huge sums of money to fight the war against terror, which we all know is going into the ‘corrupt’ politicians’ pockets. As long as even 1% of that is being used in improving the infrastructure of the country, the corrupt politicians have my vote. Even as little as 1% is better than 0%.Recommend

  • MAD

    @Maulana Diesel:

    Wow I suppose you’ll bring the politician you obviously idolize (because you’ve named yourself after him) to power than. cant you see the big picture mate. we have no other option. first the MMA and then the ANP destroyed the NWFP (not to mention the stupid and needless move of changing the provinces name). who would you vote for, cmon tell us. whos the best candidate??Recommend

  • Asim

    Imran is an iconic sport figure, he used this image to build a quality cancer hospital. I have no doubt in Imran’s sincerity and his achievements both as a cricketer and as a social worker. But I have serious reservations about the politics of Imran Khan. ISI and Military Establishment is trying to use the clean image of Imran khan to secure their vested interests. I can’t vote a person who has political mentors in the form of Haroon ur Rashid and Humyun Gohar. Haroon ur rashid and Humyun Gohar are notorious for their services for spy agencies and military Establishment. Imran should get away from such a dubious characters Recommend

  • MAD

    @Mr X:

    Have you ever tried to do something five time, keep on failing and keep at it with even greater commitment before until you suceed.

    Hes doing the same thing again. 2013 is his year and you and your kind CANNOT stop it this time. Go ahead cling to ur beloved general who will never come back to Pakistan.Recommend

  • Salman Arshad

    @Author:
    Imran’s links with Hamid Gul and JUD are nothing but corruption, just sophisticated corruption engineered by “the invisible soldiers” and which is nothing new for the average Pakistani, save the burger teenagers of course.
    I have yet to see an Imran Khan’s supporter successfully defend these dubious aspects of his campaign.Recommend

  • Watan

    This is the perfect timing for Imran Khan’s Leadership. All that the country is trying to achieve today is sadly with so much bloodshed and destruction. Imran Khan would have done this in a more peaceful, balanced and visionary approach. Those who critisize Imran Khan do not understand his Intelligent, honest and peaceful personality. Majority of the People from all ethnicities understand him, trust him and admire him and will support him. He needs to expand his party and keep on moving forward. Welcome Imran Khan! God Speed! Their is Nobody that matches Imran Khan’s honesty and integrity in leading Pakistan!Recommend

  • danish hassan

    My best wish with PTIRecommend

  • Anonymous

    I never voted during elections thinking my vote will not bring any change. But now I think, it can and that’s why I have made up mind to give my only vote to Imran Khan cuz he is the only ray of hope.Recommend

  • aiesha

    convincing and trueRecommend

  • M. A. Naqvi

    The best suggestion I can give for people who often say that Imran Khan doesn’t do enough this or that, is for them to step forward and join PTI. Maybe they can help PTI form an economic policy and be part of that team they often advocate for. The other critique is “Why doesn’t Imran Khan do a Dharna (Against this or that)?”

    People don’t realize that Dharnas take so much money. The other thing is, why don’t people demand the same things of the major parties that they demand of PTI? And if they do demand, they should be as critical of the major parties as they are of IK. PTI does not have the luxury of finances unlike the other major parties such as PML, MQM, PPP, ANP, etc.

    The excuse people give for not doing so is the same, “Lack of Time”, don’t have interest, so and so. I am sure that people can take two hours a week of their time to contribute something to PTI. A well written article by A. B. Agha.

    You can’t judge PTI by it’s political past, because it has not been given the significant opportunity. You can only decide the future. The Future is yours to decide.

    Among many things, Imran Khan has one important thing that our politicians in office are lacking, a real, genuine degree. Recommend

  • Maulana Diesel

    PTI is just another one of those extremist parties like JI or ST or Khatam-e-Nabuwwat etc. All i hear Imran rant and rave on TV talk shows is drones and corruption. I am astounded as to how he has managed to isolate the root of all the present law and order situation as the drone attacks. He says he will stop the suicide bombings in 90 days!!! Imran Khan doesn’t have the guts to condemn the Taliban or the extremists that have killed our Ahmadi and Shia brothers and sisters. He will try to appease the extremists and that would be the end of Pakistan!Recommend

  • Mohammad Assad

    There is a lot of propaganda against Imran Khan, and much of it is absolute nonsense. For instance opposing drone attacks and military operations dont make you a Taliban appologist..or that siding with political foes on issues doesnt make you a hypocrite.

    My only beef with him is about his views on the war on terror. Sure enough the WoT was not our war. But now it has become our war.

    It is like IK telling person A not to smoke, But he smokes and get cancer. Then instead of advising person A to take chemotherapy, IK asks him to wait for his antibodies to fight cancer. This approach is fraught with danger as this will actually aid cancer in spreading throughout person A`s body. IK should know better.

    Also, I reiterate what Najam Sethi says. Do 1000 dharnas against drones but spear some time for a dharna against Terrorism and Terrorists too.Recommend

  • Saad

    Excellent pieceRecommend

  • Nazia

    Imran should not tolerate the people who are on payroll of agencies (like haroon rashid….). Haroon rashid has written family history of corrupt and impotent generals (drug smugglers) and try to portray them as Hero and Mujahid (is it not a national sin?). Flattery is the only art these fake journalist know to win some monetary benefits, Imran be careful, you can be sold out cheaply by these Lafafa and Plot journalists.Recommend

  • Hassan

    @Maulana Diesel: Sniffing that diesel again, this is what happens when you have selective hearing Imran Khan talks about corruption and terrorism the two biggest issues facing the country, He has condemned terrorism time and time again but ignorant people with an agenda such as yours will never be satisfied. I mean you dont even have the guts to write your own name hiding behind pseudonym and pointing fingers at the man who has a clear stand which he stands on, cowards will never cease to amaze!!!!!Recommend

  • IZ

    Personally I disagree with many of your points and strongly disagree with the idea that Imran Khan is ready to lead the country. However, that doesn’t mean that all that you say is without merit.
    .
    I would just like to add to all the people commenting here that one of the ways that Pakistani politics needs to mature is by having serious public discussions about political candidates conducted in a mature and reasonable way. Smearing and insulting people who disagree with you is not helpful to anyone. I like how this author has tried to discuss different points in a reasonable manner without any hysterical accusations and name-calling, even if I may disagree with some of his analysis.Recommend

  • http://www.pcz-web.blogspot.com maria

    Imran khan is the last hope of Pakistan……

    If we see the period after Zia … there are only two names Benazir and Nawaz Sharif…..

    not only in Pakistan but world wide every one knew them… After the Death of Benazir……only Nawaz Sharif is remaining but people of Pakistan now understand his politics…. his Stupid decesions , un matures policies,,,,, ,,, un logical answers…. every one knew about it…. just watch him carefully when he talked in press confrences,,,,,,,,,

    i THink Imran will be the Next prime mininster of Pakistan and as when the elections comes near…members of PPP and PML n ANPs will join PTI ….Recommend

  • masood ahmed

    Imran Khan indeed is the best choice for Pakistani nation to guide them in right direction. He is the only one who can bring change. I support Imran Khan and so should every Pakistani do. If we want to change our country’s image,we must vote him.Recommend

  • Indian

    Dear Abu,

    I was interested in your comments because you are one of the rare few who have tried to defend Imran Khan’s type of politics. I was searching for some positives for Imran Khan type of Politics, which I couldn’t find, even from your views. I think he is not the Man of the Hour for Pakistan because he has no idea about the situation Pakistan is in. Nawaz, Zardari or even Musharraf are a more better bet than Imran at any time, for Pakistan. The situation has become so complex now, that Pakistan can not decide about its future on it’s own. USA and Saudi Arab has too many stakes involved in Pak’s future, other than China, India, Iran and Afghanistan’s stakes. So, in the best case a seasoned politician is the need of Hour to handle the present situation, but as we all know , Pak is going through one of the worst phase, so at least it needs an Experienced Politician, if not a Statesman. Which Imran is Not, in my opinion.
    Anyways, I have a basic problem with one of your argument/statement. You said that “The tribal areas of Pakistan have a history of never losing wars”. Now this is very dangerous line of argument. For once, this is totally trivial way of stating facts. For another, this same line of argument was used by Pakistani government to show that tribal people are very tough, but backward/conservative people, so they don’t need education or health or jobs etc. , because they can live in the harshest of conditions. That’s why they have become terrorist sympathizers now. In my opinion, stop treating tribal and border people as if they are not Humans, who actually have basic needs just like other Pakistanis/humans. then only you can understand why they are doing what they are doing and what Pakistan has done for them.

    My comments may seem out of line but I am only trying to give a hint towards the line of reasoning why Imran type politicians are the one who are responsible for the mess the tribal and border areas of Pakistan find itself today.

    Regards,
    IndianRecommend

  • Badu jah

    i would like to know what the supports of IK call themselves, liberal and secular? or conservative and islamist?…. unfortunately majority are the later and hence I won’t vote with them.Recommend

  • Ahmer Ali Khan

    Great Artical, Imran Khan is the only hope for PAKISTAN

    inshAllah PTI will win this election Ameen.Recommend

  • Rashid Khan

    I agree that among the present lot of leaders Imran Khan rates the best. But the question is will he win enough seats to facilitate a meaningful change? He has yet to make reasonable headway into the traditional vote bank that continuously elects charlatan and crooks for the assemblies.
    Unfortunately, Imran is disadvantaged by the country’s lowly literate population who account for the majority of votes in the rural areas. They will be swayed and won over by the usual manipulative appeal of common racial and ethnic bonds and false promises. Also, little has been done to amend the doctored voting lists.
    Imran may also have to ‘bite dust’ on his stance for opposing drone attacks. No doubt it has a popular appeal but has any one done their homework and compared the effectiveness of drones with full fledged military operations, in terms, of collateral damage, projected number of people likely to be rendered homeless, loss of lives etc.
    Yes there is the question of sovereignty – whose sovereignty? But has anyone conducted a proper survey and taken into account the true feeling (expressed without fear of reprisal) of the people of these tribal areas who continue to suffer -victims of double jeopardy.
    Ever wondered who stands to benefit from this cry of sovereignty? None other than the uninvited foreigners and individuals who do not acknowledge the writ of the state nor bothered about the loss of lives and destruction they have caused so far.
    A word about ‘sovereignty’ the word needs for us people. We are the ones who are constantly eroding the supremacy and independence of Pakistan by our everyday acts as citizens of this land. We don’t pay our taxes to support ourselves but survive with a begging bowl; we want a strong defensive posture but don’t have the resources to arm ourselves without borrowing money all at the cost of the uplift of our people; and, finally eighty percent of the population if given a chance would gladly take a ‘green card’.Recommend

  • adnan ayubi

    @ Bagwan Charciya shb…

    If IK is terrorist sympathizers, then wht u will say to america who is now dealing and talking with talibans officially………….

    u must hve to grow up and bring some thing solid here….Cancer hospital he has built using all his energies is not for the terrorists but for the pakistani people…Recommend

  • saleem khan

    How innocent the young writer is as typical of all PTI youngsters. All of them have a very thin knowledge about the complexities of Pakistan. All of them are operating from their urban-middle-class-homes through laptops and never never went to to Kachi Basti or to a village.Recommend

  • Zahid Khan

    @Maulana Diesel:
    Very good points fake Maulana. I am from your region as well and share your pain.
    A question for you. who do you support if not Imran Khan? Please note that he never said anything good about talibans but that does not mean that he supports them(at least to me from what I have heard from him). He is against killing of civilians including talibans.
    you make me CM of KP and I promise, i will kill all talibans and religious nutts and child molesters.Recommend

  • Taimoor

    @Maulana Diesel:
    Yeah stick with that attitude and get ready for bombs to constantly rain down on you. Hear this too YOU are part of the problem with Pakistan. Do you know why he didn’t support swat operation? Beacuse it is a short term solution. There needs to be a constant troop prescence there, the only way to work out a long term solution without the use of military intervention is to talk. Indeed thats what the Americans are working on too, so keep your vote and elect a former prisoner or whoever the heck you think is saving your rear. Recommend

  • Hussain

    The problem as I see it with Imran Khan and PTI is as follows:
    1. He (coincidentally) agrees with every thing that can help bring him to power and disagrees (or stays quiet) with every thing that somehow is supposed to make him unpopular.

    THAT is IT

    I believe that is all that can be said about Pakistan Taliban Inc. (PTI)Recommend

  • Wajahat Ali

    Truely speaking , i m confused. Imran says he will terminate contributing with America if he comes in power, and he will say to them that this is not our fight so keep us away from it. He will strengthened the tax system so pakistan can survive on its own. It is very good to listen but what about the consequinces for terminating this allience? reshaping the tax system will take long time and what we will do in the meantime. His intensions are right, but dont have solid solutions. Recommend

  • khurram

    excellent piece!!! IMRAN KHAN ZINDABAAD!Recommend

  • shaks16

    totally one sided approach!! i still remember in a program with hamid mir, imran khan stated that shariat should be implemented in FATA area. Jsut when it was implemented imran khan on hamid mirs show took a complete uturn and started saying the women rights would be effected!!! secondly he was against the military operation in swat, he shuld have known that these militants dont want to talk, they broke the deal. After this there was no solution but a military operation which proved successful!!!Recommend

  • Bloom

    Imran Khan is in search of vote bank and for that purpose he inclined towards Taliban which is the worst about Imran Khan. May God guide him towards right directionRecommend

  • D.

    @Fahd
    “Most of the people that bash imran khan are the elitist liberal people”
    Excuse me, what gave you that idea? -.-Recommend

  • Farrukh

    NadeemF*Paracha should tatoo this blog post to his body! (Thumbs up if you agree)Recommend

  • http://lonepkliberal.wordpress.com Loneliberal PK

    I wonder if the author’s respect for Imran Khan has somewhat diminished in the light of Edhi’s interview? The one where he accused Imran Khan and Hamid Gul of threatening him?Recommend

  • Abu Bakr

    @Loneliberal PK:

    The Author could not care less about what anyone says, unless it is a serious accusation with concrete evidence against the concerned party that would create a reason to prefer a different party. The man in question has provided the people with world renowned institutions and initiatives in health and education with unmatched integrity where the state and all associated with it have failed. On top of that his honesty is unquestionable and his financial credibility is accepted. These are enough reasons to win my vote. Sympathy for terrorists and having the support of the establishments are accusations out of desperation – much similar to how the many ‘intellectual’ journalists and analysts on the social media and twitter try to use psychotic pro PTI trolls who are clearly idiots to show as if they represent all the supporters of the party. If you want to bash someone, you’ll have a lot more fun if you focus elsewhere. If you disagree with something, step up and share your ideas. That is far more productive. Recommend

  • Mehr Rasheed

    This is extremely a one sided blog and a try to hide many hard to swallow facts… and his followers blindly try to follow him… First i will talk the support of musharraf , imran khan supported musharraf at a time when no major party was behind him and he was feeling loneliness at the political stage… Providing the energy to the most corrupt dictator in pakistan history was a big big big mistake… and we as a pakistani are suffering his decisions… He was alongside musharraf when musharraf was deciding on the fate of pakistan.. on such a crunch time, such a blunder ? one cannot clear himself by saying sorry to the nation…

    And when it comes to MQM, he promised the nation many many times that he is going to file the cases against MQM leadership against their role in mass killings of the people in karachi.. But it is a know truth that he never filed a single case against them in these 5 years or so.. but ended with calling the voice if altaf as voice of pakistan.. I can remember that PTI was denying imran called ALTAF. but very next day the the newspaper of GHULAM AKBAR the personal political secretary of IK had a headline “imran called atalf over drones”.

    Now comes the hottest issue : WAR ON TERROR… he repeatedly says that we must have balanced approach in ties with US and Talibaan… these are only words and could not provide a framework what can be done to minimize US and TALIB influence in Pakistan.. Refusing AID is not going to help as PMLN leadership refused USAID.. He just criticizes the politicans over WAR ON TERROR and protects the role of agencies and forces in this so-called WAR ON TERROR…. We all know that there is timber mafia, narco mafia and smuggling mafia now involed in this war……….. He can say that we must refuse USAID but then the question is why he visits USA every six months to raise the funds for SKMCH ?Recommend

  • NadLasi

    No choice other than imran khan if we want to excel our country. Appeal to all please join hands with IK because all of us experienced the political grus. Recommend

  • Anisa

    I’m dumbfounded how on earth aa american propaganda tool like express tribune allowed something positive written about Imran khan. I always thought ET is out to destroy Pakistan by licking American feet. How strangeRecommend

  • Fahad siddiqui

    Imran khan is a new project of hamid gul ……. after IGI. His word his stance every thing …. Read the history. zero Grass root support. Version 2 of JI ………… I will go for MQM rather the PTI at least they have middle class back ground. Jo khud kabhi bus ma nhe ghuma us ko kia pata bike or bus par sufer karna kasa hia. And he talk for the people of Pakistan lolz.Recommend