The agony and esctasy of PTI

Published: May 17, 2013

Supporters of PTI wave flags in Rawalpindi. PHOTO: AFP

Supporters of PTI wave flags in Rawalpindi. PHOTO: AFP High time that Imran Khan directs the energy, idealism and adrenaline of his supporters to give birth to a Naya Pakistan in name, not just in theory. PHOTO: AFP

‘’It was the best of times, it was the worst of times, it was the age of wisdom, it was the age of foolishness, it was the epoch of belief, it was the epoch of incredulity, it was the season of Light, it was the season of Darkness, it was the spring of hope, it was the winter of despair, we had everything before us, we had nothing before us..’’ Charles Dickens, A Tale of Two Cities.

‘’Captain oh my captain’’ Imran Khan energised many with his strident call for change which lassoed in thousands hoping to change the history of this benighted country. Posters of the Messiah and his rallies cum concerts, breathless columns and covers devoted to the man who would be prime minister (PM) abounded as his supporters staked their claim via social media and dared anyone to dispute that victory would be theirs because Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf’s (PTI) cause was the just cause. Those questioning the manifesto or voicing concern over policies were taken on with relish and soon PTI trolling was en vogue.

What was truly remarkable was the way doubting Thomases were swept along by the emotional tidal wave unleashed by The Fall. When Imran Khan fell off that rickety stage along with his bumbling guards, the nation held its breath. Images of the bloodied, dazed Khan being rushed to hospital and his tumble was played on TV ad nauseum until people started experiencing vertigo and breathlessness.

Perhaps it was the lack of oxygen which led many sitting on the fence to throw caution to the winds and embace Khan because “there’s only leader of Pakistan who united everyone when he fell.”

Plethora of posters, anthems and updates about Khan being the next PM inundated timelines and worries were bandied about like “how will he take oath of office in hospital?” The babble reached a crescendo about whether PTI would garner 100 or 150 seats, based on analysis by sympathetic media and projections by party officials. People started sounding like echoes of each other leading one friend to remark dryly: “it’s like the invasion of the Body Snatchers.’’

When a bruised but defiant Imran Khan appeared on TV lying on his hospital bed, there was nary a dry eye and it was decided then, once and for all, that he was on course to be the next PM. Imran Khan kurtas and scarves were cranked out by fashion labels not hitherto known for their creativity or style, but anxious to jump on the bandwagon.

Photo: FILE

Come Election Day, it was heartening to see the 60% turnout, a statistic attributed to the success of Khan’s message. Parents with kids in tow, frenetic youngsters, elderly couples, a lady hobbling on a stick, even a man on a stretcher left the comfort of their homes and stepped out in the sizzling heat to make their voices heard.

Photo: AFP

Many flew in from abroad to make their vote count.


Photo: AFP

In their state of elation, perhaps they forgot that there were people living outside their urban bubble, the great unwashed masses and lower middle class who were striving to make a living. Their vote ushered in the return of Nawaz Sharif. Accusations of these voters being “jahil’’ and lack of education were proclaimed as being the root cause of all of Pakistan’s problems. Punjab and ‘’paindoo’’ became almost interchangeable, because they had voted in a ‘’ganwaar’’ PM unlike Imran Khan who would at the very least have given Pakistan the honour of having “the hottest Prime Minister.’’

A heartbroken fashionista vented:

 “Still feels like when our cricket team lost the 1987 semi-final in Lahore. Colossal let down. Will need extraordinary reserves of strength to get back on track. Just spare me the ganja, nihari guzzling, shairi pasand, Bollywood loving attributes.’’

Interestingly, the last three attributes are shared by many discerning PTI supporters.

A US based designer lamented: “Where are the cute little kids with jackets when you need them the MOST!” while sharing a video of Nawaz Sharif’s victory speech. Needless to say, if she had said this about Obama after his election victory, FBI would have hauled her in for questioning.

A banker in Lahore bitterly complained how,

 ‘’the Ganjas have become the MQM of Punjab. Burgers or not, even I feel like becoming an Insaafian now. Down with Shreks.”

Nawaz Sharif being depicted as Shrek amidst shrieks of amusement, notwithstanding the fact that Shrek is a good hearted person but then appearances are all which count for many. Snide comments about whether the Sharif brothers will celebrate their win by marrying again. Perhaps people whose leaders who live in glass houses should be a trifle wary before dirtying the pond with such barbs?

Replacing Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP) as the second most popular party is no mean achievement. Instead of being excited about PTI’s improved standing, many supporters were shell-shocked by their failure to sweep to power. PTI should take a leaf out of the book of the bloody but unbowed Awami National Party (ANP) who lost so many to terror, but remained committed to peace and did not try to shut down Karachi for even one hour in mourning. They looked Taliban in the eye on election day, but lost heavily to PTI in KP as the EU election observer mission admitted that Taliban violence had “unbalanced the playing field” in some places.

Although ANP accepted the election results without demur, no one in Lahore, Karachi or Islamabad really talks about them because they are not in their social circle.

In Karachi, PTI emerged as the second largest party behind Muttahida Qaumi Movement (MQM). After the fracas with MQM, a PTI supporter claimed she, “would side with Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) the second they declare war on MQM.’’ Ironically, PTI supporters can be as bloody minded and intolerant as Bhai log. More is the pity because being educated and urbane, PTI wallahs really should know better and have the patience to respect other peoples’ point of view. In fact, many of those infuriated with MQM are the very same people who used to be their enthusiastic volunteers.

Accusations of rigging may hold some water, but it’s certainly not on the scale which would have given PTI the ability to form a government at the centre.

Why is it that the urban elite shouting themselves hoarse about the power of their vote are themselves unwilling to respect the power of the vote of the poor masses?

As a friend said:

Aik taraf kehtay ho puri qom jaahil ha, doosri taraf kehtay ho rigging hui hai. Tum logoon kay to aapas me bayan naheen miltay. Ab keh do jaahil qom ne rigging ki hai? If the masses are jahil, then why the allegations of rigging?’’

(On one hand you say masses are uneducated, on the other hand you say there has been rigging. Decide which one is it. Have the illiterate masses done the rigging?)

A renowned analyst is patted on the back when he pronounces;

“The results of the elections are in, but how did a former exile win the vote? By promising airports to people who can’t afford bicycles. Poor people, who couldn’t afford a bicycle at the time of the elections, like to be promised an airport. You never know when you might need it.’’

Not exactly. Nawaz Sharif won because people were fed up of mismanagement, terrorism and massive power cuts. If the poor dumb masses cast their votes for a better economy and a better livelihood, where is the need to mock them for their choice?

Nawaz Sharif may not be the most charismatic leader around but it’s worth remembering that when The Fall occurred, he not only sent his good wishes to Imran Khan but also suspended his campaigning for one day.

In his victory speech, he excused Khan for the unbecoming language he had used against him. Sharif also made the goodwill gesture of visiting Khan in the hospital and advising him that according to a hadees, one should not remain angry for more than three days.

Unfortunately, the behaviour of most PTI supporters clearly illustrates the divide between the haves and the have nots, with the former being hypocritical, condescending and racist towards the latter. How can you expect others to change when you are not willing to change yourself?

High time that Imran Khan directs the energy, idealism and adrenaline of his supporters to give birth to a Naya Pakistan in name, not just in theory.

Read more by Maheen here or follow her on Twitter@MaheenUsmani

Maheen Usmani

Maheen Usmani

A freelance writer who has covered subjects ranging from socio-political issues to women's rights to counter terrorism, sports, travel, culture and music. Maheen tweets @MaheenUsmani (

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

  • Noman Ansari

    You certainly like quoting other writers,Recommend

  • Dee

    Oh lovely lovely lovely lovely blog! Not a PML-N supporter myself but this is all I have ever wanted to say about PTI supporters. A leader can guide you not change you. Change comes from within not from outside. If you are as disrespectful as others, where’s the change you have been boasting about?Recommend

  • Sa

    Good blogs! Sums up sentiments of PTI supporters; but time has come to harness support of rural masses and poor people. Insafians should recognize Pakistan is not a diverse nation and that PTI didn’t address aspirations of a lot of Pakistanis.Recommend

  • Samreen

    “Accusations of rigging may hold some water, but it’s certainly not on the scale which would have given PTI the ability to form a government at the centre.”
    exactly my point sister….
    The two constituencies most accused of rigged results, even if awarded to PTI, would not make the situation any different from what it is now..
    I fail to understand how the PTI supporters even think of winning enough seats to enable PTI to form government in the center, considering a party which has contested the elections for the first time as a ‘party’, As it was just Imran Khan before…

  • Saad

    Wow maheen !! u’ve really got it upside down haven’t you !! I pray that someday people like you will finally understand what PTI is struggling to achieve. I


  • HN

    While I could agree that the social media has been a bit to wayward in its response, and needs to be corrected particularly the mocking of people who actually voted N-league.

    But to the statement:
    “Why is it that the urban elite shouting themselves hoarse about the power of their vote are themselves unwilling to respect the power of the vote of the poor masses?”

    I totally disagree with how you actually have divided the people protesting and satisfied with results as elite and poor. Also the protesters are simply saying that do not rob us of our vote, even if they are in minority. If the N voters gave 100 votes and an other say PTI supporters gave 50 votes (but they suspect only 25 of the 50 are counted). Now they are peacefully protesting for the right of counting the allegedly uncounted votes where some parties have serious reservations. The have even stated that its fine if the final results remain unchanged. Would you enlighten as to what is wrong here, and how the elite (as you claim are the only ones protesting and I disagree) is being disrespectful?

    Its just that the media is confusing a simple demand of fair process and making it look unjust. They have been peaceful (no reports of violence in media), they have not asked for changing the results in their favor. I simply don’t get the criticism. Yes I do agree, that there have been some hate messages doing the rounds against the N voters which I feel is bad if PTI supporters are doing it. But please don’t frame a peaceful and rightful protest as unfair and elitist.Recommend

  • aaliyah

    It’s ironic that PTI, the party that bases itself of this “elite” urban support failed to win any seats in these areas, and won them in KPK, a largely rural province. Is this a coincidence? I think not. I fail to understand why people keep running down PTI supporters for the simple reason that they are protesting what was unarguably an unfair election.

    And your view that, “In their state of elation, perhaps they forgot that there were people living outside their urban bubble, the great unwashed masses and lower middle class who were striving to make a living” is a gross generalization. It wasn’t just the urban areas that were voting for parties, it was rural areas as well. Imran khan has been touring villages all year round, which media outlets conveniently forget to highlight.

    It is incredibly elitist to argue that uneducated people can’t make decisions for themselves. A lot of people from many walks of life voted for IK for whatever reason. Stop creating divisions between the educated and the uneducated, the only bubble that exists is in your mind, i have met uneducated people far wiser than some of the “educated elite”. Recommend

  • http://www.tanzeel, Tanzeel

    However Karachi is not ready for cosmetic change. We, Karachites are well aware of the fact that PTI is one of those notorious political parties did agreement with TTP barring women for voting in lower Dir. PTI’s victory in KPK rejecting secular forces is an alarm for Karachites as we are convinced that Imran Khan never condemned Taliban and is infact ally of Jamat e Islami in KP who stand for Al Qaeda and Taleban, the same militants shameless take responsibility of attacking Pakistani Armed forces.
    We want to see prospering Karachi governed by moderate forces. Recommend

  • HS

    Quite true. I can see the rudiments of fascism already sprouting in PTI. Say something against their leader and you are likely to be abused and threatened. For them it’s my way or highway. Only they can be right, the rest are, well jahil and paindoo. Many who belong to the upper classes (and I hope I am not accused of being a Marxist) are used to getting things their way all their lives (via money, connections etc). Afer voting for the first time, they just can’t accept that there are things that cannot be ‘had’ so easily.
    In spite of being a lifelong Karachiite, I and my family voted for ANP (for the first time ever) as a tribute to the so many sacrifices they made in the last five years.
    Throughout the campaign IK kept hitting rather below the belt: ‘oye Nawaz Sharif’, ‘is sher ki phainti lagani hai’, ‘showbaz sharif’, and the like. He even refused to meet Shehbaz Sharif in hospital, he didn’t congratulate PML N on their victory, at least not until Nawaz Sharif paid a visit. PML N, on the other hand, played it quite fair. IK may not yet be a seasoned politician, but he isn’t being a sportsman either.

  • Rasha

    And what do you say about the rigging ! We should just accept a rigged mandate because that is what always happens in Pakistan .. You are young and should not be so cyncnical don’t you think it’s unfair that people of all classes lost their votes because of rigging – there are videos personal accounts showing how rigging had occurred .. Don’t you think there is any truth to it or are they just figments of people’s imagination? It’s so sad to give a one sided opinion without mentioning or looking at the reasons for the results.. Yes pml n may have had a majority but in many parts of the country there was rigging.. I know people from all classes ( as you insist on making it a class issue ) who wanted to vote but their vote was taken. From them– they were unable to do anything because they didn’t have the voice to stand up for their rights!! Referring to the poor as ‘poor dumb masses’ is elitist in itself! Having said that personal attacks on any politician are not something i support but dont demean a bigger cause because of some comments. You should stand up against corrupt practices no matter how they affect the election results – little rigging or not winning is not the concern – everyone should have the right to have their vote counted and if we are fighting for that you should stand with us instead of demeaning the case by making it a class thing ! Then only will democracy be respected and people come out next time to vote….Recommend

  • ss

    the have-nots should thank the haves for qeemay waley naan or 500 rupees per CNIC, if it were not for PTI, PML(n) walas would’ve taken them for granted.Recommend

  • Sarah

    Disagreed! You have generalized the stance of the PTI supporter. If a supporter of PTI is behaving inappropriately, blame the person not the party stance. PTI and its supporters have accepted defeat wholeheartedly. The protest are only to raise voice against the massive rigging that has taken place. The rigging would not have changed the results BUT wrong doing should be stopped. As for the “good gesture” by Mr. Sharif, you cheat a guy, do all what you wanted to and then come up showing the world that you are the “good guy” while the other is helpless! Such irony. Recommend

  • Muhammad Khan

    dude, there’s a difference between Afghan taliban (the original ones) and the Pakistani Taliban, TTP who are supported by CIA and RAW and TTP incite violence in Pakistan

    while Afghan Taliban fights NATO.

    JI and like organizations support Afghan Taliban as NATO(foreign invasion) has already killed thousands of innocents in Afghanistan and not TTP.

    you should do some research before mixing between the two!

    hope this helpsRecommend

  • talha

    “Accusations of rigging may hold some water, but it’s certainly not on the scale which would have given PTI the ability to form a government at the centre.”

    and pray tell what sources do you have to support your above claim. that’s all the insaafians were asking for. Find out the scale on which rigging was done. stop insulting intelligence and supporting rigging. let the truth be out. the only thing we are demanding is that have reelections in the constituencies where there was rigging and video evidences. find out through thumb impressions in 4 of these constituencies the level of rigging. if its not on that scale, we all accept the results. nawaz sharif will still win the elections i know. doesn’t mean you give up the seat PTI won on as well saying oh well we lost, doesn’t matter 3-4 seats here or there. U should realize every single seat counts, not jsut for politics but for the people of that area who went out and voted for PTI just to see that rigging declared favor in someone else’s favor. Recommend

  • Tanzeel

    @Muhammad Khan
    How could destruction in one country is justified and other not. Taleban meant challenging writ of Government and imposing their rule of law. Unfortunately TTP and Afghani Taleban both doing so in their respective countries. Hence they both are terrorists but JI and PTI doing agreements with them and not condemning any of their terrorist attacks.Recommend

  • Parvez

    Over all I thought you got it fairly right.
    No serious analyst thought that the PTI would sweep the polls but they did say that even if PTI came in third it would be a game changer for Pakistani politics and that is what happened.
    The PML-N was tipped, five years ago to be next-in-line (friendly opposition was a fact) but the PPP performance was so disastrous that PML-N benefited immensely. If I a not wrong the PTI is the second party in the Punjab, this will force the Sharif team to perform.

    My view on the PPP-Z is that after five years of criminal governance they engineered it so that they were still allowed to retain a strangle hold on Sindh, so it was a win for them.
    The PTI sensibly stayed away from this.

    The MQM have been challenged by the PTI and instead of seeing it as such and countering it, they have given the impression of hitting the panic button ( Altaf bhai did not help in this ), something no political party can afford, this worked in favour of the PTI.

    Bottom line : PTI has got off to a good start. Now more hard work is needed.

  • Karim

    Love the quote at start from Charles Dickens, one of my favorites.Recommend

  • PostMan

    Suppose Imran Khan becomes the Lord of Pakistan in next 10 years. When an election occurs during his reign, he manipulates elections result in a way that he (his supporters) occupies the polling station, stuffs ballot boxes, throws out original ballot boxes and replaces them with their own, threatens and makes polling agents do his bidding, appoints his own polling agents… thus manipulates the results and gets election victory. He does that in only 10-20 constituencies where it matters the most… would people opposed to Imran Khan and PTI let him go or ask ECP to investigate?

    I think its about ethics and morality when exercise like elections take place. If Army and agencies manipulate results – you should shout. If establishment does the hankypanky – shout. If a political party does that – take out rallies or whatever. No one should be allowed to manipulate elections and if such accusations occur – they need to be investigated and corrected. This culture needs to be developed for the future generations of Pakistanis.Recommend

  • khan

    author are you trying to be funny Recommend

  • not impressed

    thank you! i have been labelled ‘undemocratic’ because i didn’t agree with PTI policies and wanted to vote in a JI candidate in Karachi….Recommend

  • T Khan

    Brilliant! Thank you Maheen for writing this much needed blog.

    For insafians, it’s time to move on. I, as ANP supporter, also have serious reservations regarding PTI’s mandate in KPK, shall we also ask for a recount? Also, as Asfanyar Wali said, ANP was also not provided with a level playing field. While others were counting votes, we were counting bodies. Shall we also ask for a re-election in KPK where level playing field is provided to everyone? Recommend

  • Azmat Shah

    Could someone please tell me as to how much of rigging is acceptable. They re-counted two Panjab contituencies won by Ch Nisar and the results were overturned in favour of PTI. Is is just a coincidence? It may well be just the tip of the iceberg. Is the ECP still justified in refusing to issue re-counting orders on other constituencies which are doubtful? If the protests can be averted and avoided just by re-counting, i dont think its an un-reasonable demand by PTI, especially when quite a few of the results have already been overturned which is a proof that the ECP machinery has failed miserablyRecommend

  • Bilal

    Thats ridiculous… Why is the fight for the Right by Insafian being termed as fight between Elite & The Poors… Recommend

  • True Karachiwala


    If a supporter of PTI is behaving inappropriately, blame the person not the party stance.

    Jaan ki amaan pao to aap ki khidmat me arz kardo, kio jaahil honey ki waja se me educated mem sahiba k samnay baat karty darta ho.And point is that your arguement holds true for other parties as well. Recommend

  • Whatever

    Stupid blog post. Author seems to just settle some scores with some PTI fans after the elections results. Nothing else.Recommend

  • Bina

    @maheen … And your point being what? I feel there is more harm than good being done here. It would be more fruitful to try and bring people together rather than create a divide …. You have a huge responsibility here….Recommend

  • True Karachiwala

    @Muhammad Khan: well sir ever good talibans fought with bad talibans for using thier identity and defaming them ?

    If I use PTI’s name and do all the dirty work around would a PTIan sit silently and not stop me ?Recommend

  • rameez

    DHAs are not urban they are suburban :) ….Andrun e Shehr is wat u call real urban area Recommend

  • Ashmeet

    From an indian point of view this article was quite a insight for it was concluded that IK will win.i guess the Aam Aadmi of Pk had other views.Thks Maheen.Recommend

  • sana akbar

    For PTI defeat I give 30% credit to its supporters negative behaviour. They were abusive, they ganged up against the one who question or criticize IK, which might has sealed lips of many and didnt let IK to improve himself accordance. Its funny to see liberals supporting PTI, most of them know nothing about politics but a word "Change" is like a cool breeze to them. tey call Punajbis Jahil who supported laptop over education. They didnt know In KPK ANP has opened 9 universities , there The cool Pathans have preferred education ministry in JI`s hand(heard IK took it back) over education, Taliban fighters over pro and apologetic Taliban. I urge IK, if you talk about change, please make us believe in change by changing the behaviour of your supporters. The ones crying and protesting against rigging thought they would make you win by making fake statuses from celebrities and famous personalities, but they didnt know there is a world other than facebook too.Recommend

  • Fauzia Minallah

    Love the article Maheen we have all been a victims of PTI supporters, They are extremely intolerant to other’s view. Recommend

  • Historian 1

    The dissension over election process started from Defence area karachi where polling was not started until afternoon. Can author inform us why the elite/ educated class was barred from voting in the first place?? Recommend

  • Loosers

    Nice blog, you described all the odds PTI supporters have, but no doubt their choice of selecting PTI as only sensible, non militant and free of corruption party in Pakistan that has clear vision of what o do and wisdom of how to do for a better Pakistan, say a name of any other league better than PTI in Pakistan… No party is perfect but PTi is definitely the best today… Recommend

  • Akram Pervez

    Impressive!! U have pointed out ground realities which PTI wasnt expecting despite repeated analysis. My only suggestion to PTI kids is to read. Degree is not enuf to make u literate n sensibleRecommend

  • qas

    Rallies come concerts ? oh my writer oh my writerRecommend

  • Mujeeb Nizamani

    Bravo Maheen Usmani you nailed it. The comments reflect here as well that most of PTI followers can not even digest the critique that is actually a constructive one. Recommend

  • Zee

    Wow. The fact that we protest being robbed of our votes does not imply that we do not accept the majority’s mandate. That is entirely an assumption on your part. . Please tell me, if a daylight robbery of our votes was going on, why should we not protest? It’s people like you creating a divide between the educated and un-educated, not us. Need I reming you, these educated “burgers” are the one supporting a party who intends to make education common for the common man, and make it homogeneous for people from all walks of life :)Recommend

  • Pakistani Ostrich

    @Noman Ansari 8 hours ago
    “..You certainly like quoting other writers…”
    Except she doesn’t quote from the article/blogs written by naive PTI trolls. May be this the reason she did not quote from any of your blog.
    @Bina 4 hours ago
    “@maheen … And your point being what?”
    Maheen’s point is PTI/IK’s hot balloon has been punctured. IK’s stumpts got cleaned out by the don’t get a third umpire (EC vote recounting) review when you are clean bowled…stop being a sore loser and go back to pavilion. IK should practice playing and win in mahalla cricket before he want to play for the national team.Recommend

  • Akhtar

    “Accusations of rigging may hold some water, but it’s certainly not on the scale which would have given PTI the ability to form a government at the centre.”

    It’s not about seats or government, it’s about vote, each and every vote. Recommend

  • Karachite

    My husband and I stood in line for 8 hours to cast our vote (DHA). My grandmother at the age of 78 stood in the sun for 3 hours to cast her vote (Gulshan-e-Iqbal). And we are not the ‘elite’. We are a middle class family. My maid voted for PTI. So did the the stationary store wala, the sabzi wala and so on. On what ground is the writer making her assumptions? I have friends who are unable to go back home because they stamped the bat instead of the the kite(Nazimabad). Do you realize that by narrowing things down to rich and poor how unfair you are being. Analyze please! Rich or poor, everyone has rights.

    What kind of leaders come on TV and say they will tie the hands of their opponent and send him to his children in London they miss him! Lets not be biased. We we’re standing for ethics in politics, let has have the same standards for everyone.

    Are you suggesting that Pakistan ought to have tolerance towards rigging? The elections were a massive failure. People were passively sitting at home and had accepted that Pakistan can not change. You lure them out with talkshows, adds and what not, abuse them and send them back without realizing there is no way back.Recommend

  • Anjali

    I am unable to understand how the writer has made such simplistic sense of people choosing Nawaz Sharif. To conter , I would sy
    It IS possible to herd a vast electorate who is uneducated. Barely eats one meal a day, is in electrical darkness courtesy load shedding and mostly if your brother as been The Lord of the biggest province. ‘
    And if some one chooses to fight such heavily imbalanced iChat, they are advised to be graceful and mature in accepting what ‘people’ have chosen, and asked to grow up because politics is not everyone’s cup of tea. Where is grace and maturity in rigging and dominating? And if this is politics, we all better not be mature.

    And so much appreciation of Nawaz Sharifs flowery gestures towards his opponent, it is meaningless. It is easy to be ‘ magnanimous’ when you know victory is in your fists even before the contest.Recommend

  • Kashif Naseem

    Fine, yeah the extremist PTI supporters are casting bad words on the less-educated people, but know that PMLN supporters are equally extremist. Recommend

  • fedup

    you know what bibi, you know nothing. masses, jahil, ujad, ganwar all gave their votes to PTI. I am from Karachi, and seen how people were encouraging each other to vote for TABDEELI. So, come out from your a/c room and check the ground realities if you have any courage to leave your cozy room. Recommend

  • Rusty Walker

    It was an excellent article, Maheen. Very well written. I am glad you used the Dicken’s comment. I left a comment, but I am not sure if it posted (computer froze up on me).

    Very balanced writing on a crazy election that includes murder of ANP, and other opposition parties, and hero worship of Imran Khan.
    Frustrating election, but..a very good essay!Recommend

  • Shoaib

    Good. You have really put the things in the right prospective. The way things have been unfolding even before members taking oaths, I am convince to believe that Imran Khan will never get the opportunity like this ever in life. He no doubt is Charismatic, yet he lacks complete control on the party and may of his followers are very unfaithful and indecent to say the least.Recommend

  • AniS

    Excellent blog! Well said…….well done!Recommend

  • Yasir

    This blog just doesn’t seemed to be as impartial as the writer intended it to be. The writer and people who are writing articles of similar nature are very cynical. The PTI supporters including me never expected the part to clean sweep the elections, but the rigging was just unjustified. Also the character assassination along with the viral videos of the rigging do and enrage people who have supported IK and rightly so! The sentiments towards MQM are justified did you not hear what altaf said?? PTI is a cult following, it is but it will only become dangerous if the establishment keeps up with its foul play!! Your entitled to an opinion so are we!!Recommend

  • Ilmana Fasih

    Lovely analysis, Maheen.Recommend

  • sohail osman ali

    A very well written blog, a lot can be learned from what she has written. She recognises the dreams of the “ghareeb” awam for a better tomorrow, praises political maturity when parties called of their campaigns for a day as a sign of respect for Imran Khan, and respects the fact that ANP called a day of mourning but insisted there would be no closure of shops and busineses, and no disruptions in the city. Recommend

  • F. Alam

    Thanks for the dose of literature in an issue that is usually boring and dtry.
    While PTI supporters calim to be those who uphold justice, I agree with the author that morally they are far behind even from the likes of Nawaz Sharif who have shown more maturity.
    Though Maheen may become target of angry PTI supporters, we must give her credit for exposing immature politics where people are not willing to sacrifice their egos and call it politics of principles! Politics of principles…

  • Khalid

    Comprehensive, well written & objective analysis of PTI supporters, if only they could understand it. Recommend

  • Abbi

    Change is very difficult and does not come overnight…. to step into the unknown is a feeling not everyone is ready to encounter !!!! human beings love to stay in their comfortzones…Its easy said then done….. nothing will change unless everyone of us, from every part of life, from every household, whatever the background, whatever family, religion or caste WANTS TO CHANGE….. all of us are stuck either to a person or party, not trying to listen to the other side, its so obvious from the TV shows, newspapers , blogs, social media etc…Everyone is out there trying to make a point.. Elections are over, lets move forward……we have to zone in our energies in building a Naya Pakistan… Lets all talk about the next step, what has to be done now to make Pakistan proud of us ??? For a change, lets talk about solutions…….Recommend

  • Maira

    I’m sending this blog to all my PTI friends & relatives who have been picking my brains this election, Thanks Maheen! Recommend

  • Ali S

    I voted for PTI, but I agree with many things said here. A lot of my friends, fellow PTI voters, are incapable of admitting that a massive media campaign was not able to convince the majority of this country’s masses to buy into the ‘tsunami of insaf’. Call them jahil or whatever you want, but they have the right to vote for whomever they want and face the consequences for it. IK (I pray for his speedy recovery) hasn’t exactly been impressive either as the elections neared – first the personal insults at Nawaz, then handing the educational institution in KPK to JI.

    I’m sure that a lot of rigging went on, especially here in Karachi, but even if it hadn’t happened there would probably have been a negligible effect on PTI’s results, and those who voted for PTI need to come to terms with that. You were part of the process and played your role, your party now has a provincial government and 30 seats (up from ONE) in the national assembly – that’s a huge achievement in itself, be proud. But if there was anyone who sweeped this elections it’s Nawaz.Recommend

  • mindcontrol


    It’s not about seats or government, it’s about vote, each and every vote.

    Including the votes of women of KPK and the votes of the ANP supporters?


  • Fariha

    PTI has been exposed today. The life of one PTI official is obviously more important than the thousands of lives taken by TTP. How strange that PTI is willing to negotiate with TTP because they are their “friends” but not with Zara Hussain’s killers, whoever they may be? Recommend

  • Azfar

    Dunno why PTI followers are getting so worked up over this blog. Seems fairly neutral and rational.. but then I am not a blind follower of the great Khan. Recommend

  • Adeel

    the point most PTI supporters are trying to make is that an uneducated voter cannot be compared to an educated one , i mean lets take the case of bullet train , a bullet train in Pakistan is a very very long shot in next five years because it would require infrastructure to make rail lines , to produce electricity and not to mention the expertise required in construction and then handling of the stations and equipment and we all saw what our masses did to metro bus when it opened. the bare bone fact is that we Pakistani need not only the materialistic progress but a lesson in mannerism and humbleness so we need to teach that too to our people how to use and take care of public property and then the most important factor money , where would we get that kind of money to fund this mega project ?.when we huge amounts of national and circular debts , the smart play, the right promise would be had been to promise justice and end to corruption, cleansing the bureaucracy and free QUALITY education for all so that our nation could stand on its own two feet and build the bullet train on our own. bottom line is the educated voter is superior to an uneducated one as he has a better chance of differentiating between right and wrong. moreover the superiority of education has been clearly highlighted in our religion as well. and for fellow readers who would disagree and say that they are the same well the case of car that runs on water is a valid example od what i mean. Recommend

  • saman

    I am not anyone’s fan. I do not believe in being a Sindhi,a Mohajir or a Punjabi. I believe in being a Pakistani. I want a leader not a politician who reunites this nation and steers them towards economic and social success. Who can control sectarian violence and get Pakistan out of the list of the most corrupt nations. Recommend

  • tooba

    what ever all parties are doing ..i hope they will make sure not to make the situation more worse in Karachi ..this city has suffered to a limit now….Recommend

  • Shahid

    Maheen, Well written. Agree with you.Recommend

  • Mariam

    So all PTI members are trolls and elite (burgers)? generalizing much? Tum kitnay burger khao gi? har ghar say burger niklay ga! :PRecommend

  • Nadeem

    Great stuff.. made my day!Recommend

  • mind control


    So all PTI members are trolls and elite (burgers)? generalizing much? Tum kitnay burger khao gi? har ghar say burger niklay ga! :P

    Har Ghar se Burger Nikalayga, Toh Anzam-e-Pakistan Kya Hoga?Recommend

  • Ais.Ahmed

    It’s not about winning, it’s not about making the government too. What it about is building a weir against the river of corruption & malpractices.
    Now is the time, this is the moment, first time people are so proactively out against rigging. I am not a supporter of PTI but i do believe that we should all stand up so that a full stop may be put at this madness, for good.Recommend

  • http://. Abid P. Khan

    @mind control :
    Har Ghar se Burger Nikalayga, Toh Anzam-e-Pakistan Kya Hoga?


    What it about is building a weir against the river of corruption & malpractices.

    Though I try my best, but have to admit that many of the messages on ET are completely beyond me.Recommend

  • Ais.Ahmed

    @Abid P. Khan:
    I wonder what is so out-of-world in this comment :)Recommend

  • http://. Abid P. Khan

    “@Abid P. Khan:
    I wonder what is so out-of-world in this comment :)”

    I must rely on our friend Robert D. Nero,”Are you talking to me?”Recommend

  • Anti PTI

    I am polictal neutral as far as supporting any Political party. But reading this article half way, i could not read it any more. This is a “below the belt” rated blog, derogatory comments on physical appearence of Sharifs are condemnable. You can say these are not your words but you are coying them, but I would say what was the need of re-producing such non-sense comments. ET shall take such blogs off line.Recommend

  • http://. Abid P. Khan

    “Comprehensive, well written & objective analysis of PTI supporters, if only they could understand it.”

    That’s an unrealistic demand. Isn’t it. Recommend

  • ahmed

    fantastic article. spot on. Nothing more to add. All this nonsense about rigging is self-denial by pti supporters who had set their expectations too high, purely because of media hype. What these guys need to understand is that their leaders have accepted the results straight away and did not waste any time in forming a coalition govt in kp. If they rejected the results they would not have formed the govt in the province. So move on guys and stop looking for excuses. Recommend