Islamabad, May 13 : PML-N's decision to walk out of the federal coalition government could be seen as a threat to Pakistan's democracy and it might lead to political uncertainty which the country witnessed in 1990s, says an editorial in the Daily Times.
Analyzing the possible fallouts of the political "move" of the PML-N, it says that the nation is opposed to the "establishment" at a time when the PPP seems inclined to listen to the establishment while the PML-N sees it as its enemy. In such a scenario the net loser is the PPP.
Further elaborating, it says that Pakistan could therefore be going back to a polarisation it has known in the past. "The "establishment" may be right this time, but that no longer matters. A "triangle of fear" has come into being: an "establishment" that fears the PML-N, the PPP fears the "establishment", and the PMLN fears a compact between the PPP and the "establishment". Pakistan could therefore be going back to a polarisation it has known in the past, only with partners changed. We could be entering another round of politics of vendetta in which a divided nation will not even know the extent of harm its passions have done to it. This time around, interrupted democracy may actually yield even worse results than the political musical chairs of the 1990s," says the editorial.
According to it, the PML-N wanted the judges to be reinstated on the lines demanded by the lawyers' movement, the APDM and the media, namely, through a resolution and an executive order; but the PPP wanted it done through a constitutional amendment. The basis of their discussions was the March 9 Murree Declaration which contained a deadline of thirty days from the day the government took over. After that, the view of the two parties started to diverge.
The PPP understood "restoration" to mean that no one would be fired to make way for the wrongly deposed judges. It also had a different interpretation of the deadline. On the face of it, the PPP appeared to be more flexible but looking back at the stance it took after March 9, one can see the red line it had drawn on the issue.
Acknowledging Nawaz Sharif as the "most popular anti-Musharraf leader" in the country, the editorial says that if the elections were held again today, his party might be returned with a majority. By getting out of the coalition government, he is making sure that he is not stigmatised by the lawyers whose movement is the biggest and strongest in Punjab and unprecedentedly devolved down to the district level all over Pakistan because of the district bars.