The latest political crisis in Pakistan is likely to cause election postponement.

The latest political crisis in Pakistan is likely to cause election postponement.

In accordance with the law, the Pakistani parliament has been dissolved; nevertheless, it is quite likely that the elections that were originally slated to take place within the next ninety days will be delayed.

 

According to the electoral commission, the process of redrawing election boundaries to reflect the results of the most recent census would take a significant amount of time and include a number of months.

 

Imran Khan, who has served as prime minister in the past, was arrested and placed in jail the week before last, after which he was given a five-year political exile and a lifetime ban from holding public office.

 

He had openly challenged the powerful military establishment, alleging that it was “petrified” of elections, and he had done so in a confrontational way. In addition, he had said that the establishment was “terrified” of democracy.

 

On Wednesday, President Arif Alvi signed an order to dissolve the National Assembly, which led to the installation of a caretaker government. There will be a three-day window for the departing government of Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif to choose an interim leader and provide their proposal.

 

“The elections will be held once the census is done, which would take approximately four months of time,” a spokesperson of Pakistan’s Election Commission said in an interview with the BBC. “The census will take around four months of time.” As a consequence of this, the elections will not be able to take place until the year following the next.

 

Recent statements made by Mr Sharif to the media indicate that it is possible that elections may not take place in the current year. This comes despite the fact that he has previously warned that the nation cannot go ahead without “national unity.”

 

Some people believe that the election was postponed because the governing coalition of the Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) isn’t sure about winning the elections because of Mr Khan’s continued popularity and the impact of runaway inflation despite a bailout from the International Monetary Fund. Other people believe that the election was postponed because the PML-N is afraid of losing because of Mr Khan’s continued popularity.

 

Mr Khan has shaken up the military establishment in a way that no other politician before him has been able to. This is despite the fact that they used to be pretty close. According to Rasool Bakhsh Raees, a top analyst, there is a possibility that the former cricket star’s jail would actually increase his fan base.

 

The arrest of Mr Khan in May on allegations of corruption sparked protests throughout the nation, which resulted in at least eight deaths and almost 1,400 arrests, in addition to attacks on military property and buildings that were unprecedented.

 

The man, who is 70 years old and is now appealing his sentence on charges of bribery, has said that the purpose of the military was to “ultimately put me into prison and to damage my party.” He is currently appealing his sentence on allegations of bribery.

 

But the standard procedure is always the same: anybody who challenges Pakistan’s military must leave the country, even if they have the charisma and international renown of Mr Khan. This is something that politicians have been doing since the 1970s, and the former cricket star is only the most recent one to find this out the hard way.

 

A former senator named Afrasiab Khattak recently gave an interview with the BBC, during which he said that there are now two rival systems of government in existence concurrently. At this point, Mr Khattak has said that “the unsanctioned, de facto force intends to take over the legislative process.” “The military of Pakistan has always been powerful; but, they seek extra powers in order to ensure that their unlawful rule will not be challenged by politicians, activists, or journalists,”

 

The National Assembly debated the possibility of enacting two restrictive pieces of legislation a week ago, with the goal of dramatically extending the power of the country’s military forces and intelligence services.

 

If the planned amendments to the State Secrets Act, which has been in operation for a hundred years, are enacted, the Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) and the Intelligence Bureau (IB) would be granted the broad ability to arrest civilians for “suspected breach of state secrets.” This would be the case if the State Secrets Act were revised. Anyone who divulges the identity of a person working in the intelligence community might be subject to a jail term of up to three years, according to a proposal for a new law.

 

The adjustments provoked a disturbance in parliament, with members of the coalition partners of the PML-N and the opposition Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) accusing the government of ramming through “draconian laws in haste” without participating in a debate about them beforehand. This occurred because the government did not engage in discussion about the revisions beforehand.

 

In addition, Senator Mushtaq Ahmed of Jamaat-e-Islami issued a warning that the amendment to the Official Secrets Act would equip intelligence agencies with “unprecedented capabilities,” including the capacity to arrest and search without a warrant. Ahmed is a member of the Jamaat-e-Islami political party. This will have repercussions for human rights, individual freedoms, and the freedom of the press throughout the entirety of the country.

 

There have been allegations made against the intelligence agencies of Pakistan, for unjustly arresting opposition members, politicians, activists, and journalists on a regular basis, and human rights organisations have highlighted that the number of enforced disappearances is rising each month. In addition, human rights groups have noticed that the number of detainees released back into society is increasing.

 

The Commission of Inquiry on Enforced Disappearances found that there were an additional 157 cases of enforced disappearances recorded in the single month of July alone. The government serves as the chairperson of this panel.

 

The legislation has been sent to President Alvi, who was also a co-founder of the PTI, in order for him to review them before they can be enacted into law. In order for them to be considered legitimate pieces of law, they need his signature.

 

 

 

 

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