Imran determined to make himself felt, both at home, abroad

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Salahuddin Haider

UNDAUNTED by avalanche of criticism against him, his team and his policies, Imran, at the helm for almost 20 months now, remains firm in his stand, gaining prestige and fame, especially in the West, much faster than most of the world leaders. His motto for life is polite but firm, which has begun to pay dividends. The recent telephonic discussion with President Donald Trump, on Corona and Afghanistan, was something no Pakistani leader in recent past, was able to achieve.
The US Head of State offered him ventilators to fight back a virus the world knew nothing about it, but the gesture from world’s most powerful leader helped Pakistan’s image worldwide. No such facility was granted to India. IN fact an international institute report has passed judgment against Nirender Modi, and BJP for discrimination against India’s own Muslim population. The report said many things against India which should be a matter of shame for the country calling itself world’s largest democracy. Trumps intimacy with Imran could well produce rich results.
The recent IMF assistance programme of 5.7 billion dollars to Pakistan for Pandemics was a personal triumph for Pakistani Prime Minister. He acknowledged at his recent telethon that Trump was instrumental in taking care of Pakistan. World Bank Asian Development Bank and many more international financial institutions all announced contributions for Pakistan. A country, last in the list at international level, has gradually, succeeded in securing a place of eminence at international stage. The Pakistani leader is trying hard to solve the Afghanistan Issue.
Taliban and Kabul government have been negotiating peace, but ripple sin the pond is disturbing sometime. Nevertheless progress achieved in attaining the goal, is commendable Imran may well have achieved many other landmarks by now, but the lockdown in America, Europe, and most of the countries, became an uncontrollable hurdle. Imran himself feels that Corona may take 6 months to a year to lose its grip. Till then many changes could come in world politics, economies may take a new turn, and no one at this stage could predict as to what kind of changes may take by the time, the virus finally retreats.
On the domestic front, his policies of controlling the deadly disease had paid dividends, although a lot more is needed to be done. Lack of awareness in the public about pursuing standard operating procedures reverse the benefits achieved after great deal of efforts. However the change in Information Ministry was long overdue. Imran’s media team suffered from lack of imagination which was a major minus point. However now that senator Shibli Faraz, and Lt-General (R) Asim Saleem Bajwa, retired two and a half years ago from army, was incharge of CPEC. He is now prime minister’s special assistance on information.
Some eye brows were raised as to whether military mindset and political priorities, woud work, was based either deliberate campaign to create problems for the government or was based on ignorance. Both Shibli and Asim Bajwa are too well known for their humility and experience in dealing with the task of projecting government policies.
Bajwa was ISPR chief during General Raheel Sharif, He is police and humble and knows his job. So is Shibli, son of a celebrity poet Ahmed Faraz. He has been dealing with opposition both as leader of the house in Senate, and on TV discussions.
He is cool and does not get worked up—ar are quality, a major plus point. Imran has done well. Then reducing the petrol prices by Rs 15 per liter, should bring down prices of items of daily use, Transporters are now on trial. Hopefully they will realize their obligation to the society, and bring rates down for good supply.

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