Senate polls and political jolts

The Senate elections have concluded and due to lack of transparency, Yousuf Raza Gilani managed to gain victory. Prime Minister Imran Khan is upset after the debacle as his vote was also supposedly rejected while several party members and lawmakers have betrayed him while misgivings of others like Shehryar Afridi spoilt the vote. It is evident the PML-Q did not vote for the PTI. In view of all the circumstances, an embattled Prime Minister Imran Khan has decided to take a vote of confidence and a major reshuffle in the federal cabinet is on the cards.

The prime minister is certainly in a tough situation right now. A day before the Senate elections, he held several meetings with disgruntled party lawmakers who complained that they were being ignored and no funds were being given for development works in their constituencies and neither were they able to meet the prime minister. Prime Minister Imran Khan is trapped among his blue-eyed ministers. During the vote of confidence, he will need 171 votes from the 342-member House but this is highly unlikely. Imran Khan will take a vote of confidence in National Assembly but may not be successful. His departure is now inevitable. Even his close aides and cabinet members have realized that the prime minister is set to leave and are searching for a safe haven.

After the defeat in the Senate elections, the prime minister’s allies and adversaries have joined hands and started consultations with the federal ministers. Imran Khan is concerned about the defeat of Hafeez Sheikh and is unwilling to accept it. But he has been advised by many close aides that there will be no point in challenging the result and they should move on.

After the Senate election, the PDM is gearing for the Minus One formula and has almost succeeded in its plan. The game of politics which is expected to be played in the coming days is rather interesting and will be keenly watched.

The allied PML-Q is also dismayed at the prime minister despite being given Senate seats. And it showed its resentment by not voting for PTI in the Senate elections and is now set to join hands with its long-time adversary PML-N.

The next Chief Minister of Punjab will certainly be Chaudhry Pervaiz Elahi. The PDM has sidelined imprisoned Shehbaz Sharif during the entire political struggle. The talks with the establishment two months ago in the UK are finally showing results which we witnessed in the by-polls and Senate elections. In the case of the Minus One formula, the most likely candidates include former Chairman Senate Muhammad Mian Soomro as well as Shehbaz Sharif and Maryam Nawaz. If it goes as planned, Shehbaz Sharif is the strongest and favorite candidate to be the next prime minister.

The PDM fought this election only against the prime minister. The country is currently in a severe financial crisis and the people are worried due to inflation and no mega project has been implemented while the economy is in shambles. The prime minister has no choice but to quit and go home. The PDM leadership met the higher powers in Rawalpindi and the opposition was offered to form the government with Bilawal Bhutto as the prime minister. The PDM turned down the offer saying that it wants a full-term government for five years. The nation is embroiled in stiff wrangling which can change the entire political scenario.

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