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Imran Khan's 'ghabrana naheen'.

There is every reason to worry

PM Imran Khan is a highly motivated politician. But he has to be reminded that at this day and age it is no more possible to put political opponents on the rack or for them to be hanged, drawn and quartered. What is more, any move to try to deprive incarcerated political opponents of facilities granted under the laws by unilaterally changing the age old laws would constitute a bad precedent and draw flak from many at home and abroad. Anyone who has committed a crime has to be dealt with in accordance with the law. But a perception that highly serious cases are being cooked up for political reasons has to be avoided. The PM, who prefers to claim the moral high ground, would lose credibility if seen to be unabashedly involved in horse trading.

The way former President Asif Zardari's TV interview was pulled off the air has sent a message that the government was afraid of some of the revelations the former President was going to make. Keeping in view the treatment being meted out to the media in general, the incident would be interpreted by many as yet another serious assault.

The government cared little about the consequences while bulldozing the budget through Parliament. The budget was passed in a hurry without proper debate. The rush to 'get it done' particularly on the business side, where the most sweeping changes were planned, has led to new and unforeseen complexities, loopholes and glitches which are now haunting the tax collectors and taxpayers. The strong reaction from the entire spectrum of the textile industry and the possibility of the closure of mills leading to massive unemployment is one worrisome outcome. Unless the government resolves the concerns of those affected, it will face serious problems in achieving the tax target.

There is a need on the part of saner elements associated with the PTI to look at the bigger picture. Vindictive tendencies in the government leadership have to be curbed. There is a need to realise that muzzling the media would give birth to harmful rumours and fake news. To ensure that economic policies are implemented, these have to be owned by the business community.

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Publication:Pakistan Today (Lahore, Pakistan)
Date:Jul 2, 2019
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