Featured Articles — December 24, 2011

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Javed Hashmi, Senior Vice President of PMLN and a symbol of democratic struggle has left PMLN and joined PTI, marking one of the biggest achievements of PTI till date. At the same time, it has been a dark day in history of PMLN and has greatly demoralised PMLN and its supporters.

Javed Hashmi has claimed the move as personal reason, but several sources claim this move as disagreements on party policies and strategies. The exact motives for this move to PTI are still not yet clear, as Javed Hashmi has joined the party with Shah Mehmood Qureshi as Co-Chairman, who has always been a political rival of Hashmi.

If Hashmi had developed any differences, they could not be bigger than the achievements performed by PMLN with Hashmi and rest of senior members in a team effort, including the dislodging of Musharraf and Restoration of judiciary. Similarly, the very same discredited and dishonest politicians of PMLQ and PPP that Hasmhi fought against for 12 years under Musharraf and Zardari, it is beyond common understanding how Javed Hashmi would find comfortable working with.

Although Javed Hashmi struggled the most under General Musharraf, PMLN as a party was kept alive by a team of few good men, who faced hardships yet proved their loyalty with their commitments. In contrast to that, PTI has senior members like Mian Azhar, whom led the revolt against PMLN and were directly responsible for sufferings of Javed Hashmi.

Just recently on 15th March 2009, Javed Hashmi was manhandled by police before getting arrested in the hometown of Qureshi, while entire Punjab police was under control of Zardari and Gillani under PPP Governor Rule with support of Shah Mahmood Qureshi. This makes us wonder if the differences between Hashmi and PMLN had become far greater than his differences with likes of Mian Azhar and Shah Mehmood Qureshi of PTI?

Secondly, the people of Pakistan have always loved and rewarded Javed Hashmi on name of Nawaz Sharif. The elections of 2008 are one of the examples, where Javed Hashmi lost his home seat in rural Multan but won the urban seats of Lahore and Rawalpindi on PMLN strongholds. Would these people feel betrayed by Javed Hashmi? Do you think Javed Hashmi would be able to get the same level of support by same people under PTI’s flag?

The departure of Javed Hashmi should also be a wakeup call for PMLN, who needs to put its house in order and make a clear strategy to engage with public and to provide solutions to steer this country out of crises. Their leadership should also keep distance with any “Khushamdi Group” that advises them with suicidal policies of promoting their family members like Captain Safdar and Maryam Nawaz in the youth.

For PTI, the inclusion of Javed Hashmi is a very positive development and it would bring political maturity in higher ranks of PTI and Imran Khan can learn from the vast experience brought by Javed Hashmi.