PTI worker’s killing


Wrong kind of democracy

For some reason PML-N seems unable to cease providing PTI with justifiable cause to complain. Killing of three of its workers since the announcement of the local body polls is no small matter, after all. Once again an election rally led to a standoff; and once again bullets were fired, which led to yet another killing. PTI has now, expectedly and rightly, gone on the offensive; and it will squeeze political juice from the tragedy by accusing the government and police of corruption, negligence and what not.

Its case is helped in no small manner, of course, by the government’s consistent refusal to take a tough party position on the matter. Chief Minister Shahbaz Sharif’s ceremonial inquiries have turned blanks so often that few hold hopes of justice from his finger-waving anymore. This time, in the run-up to the local body elections, caution is even more important than usual; not the least considering the atmosphere of political animosity. The government should ensure speedy justice and compensation for the victims. PML-N leaders must also ensure that the grass root stays away from violence.

There is, generally, a greater tendency for violence during local body elections. Often enough long-running local rivalries spill over onto the political scene. At times like the present, when there is bitter political opposition on the street, such trends are naturally amplified. That is particularly why the leadership must keep its eye on long term considerations. PTI will do itself, and others, no favours by agitating beyond reason. PPP and ANP provided inspiring examples grace and determination when they were savagely targeted by TTP ahead of the last general election. PTI, too, must exercise prudence. These polls have taken their sweet time coming, and then too had to be pushed through. It’s best if all parties ensure they go ahead so the right kind of democracy can be practiced.