STRAIGHT TALK by Hafeez Khan

Har pasay bhan taroor” a Punjabi phrase that describes destruction and chaos prevailing all around. Governance is adrift; it is difficult to determine who is in charge. Suppression and brutality is the order of the day to muzzle dissenting voices. People are being crushed by unprecedented inflation with no end in sight and nothing is being done about it. Terrorism is raising its ugly head andour defenders are laying down their lives. The confusion about new Army Chief has everyone on edge.

The list goes on. Analyzing each subject requires a full article. However, the combined impact of these events iscreating hurtful uncertainty. Pakistan is like a runaway train without a driver in the engine room. There will be a huge price to pay for such chaos. We are headed for a crash landing that has drastic consequences for our survival and national security. The economy is out of control. All indicators show alarming negative trends. In this environment governed by lies and false narratives; a fact check and review of numbers will give the real story. Numbers never lie. We are in a huge mess.

Industrial production has tanked, exports have dropped to alarming levels; remittances are falling; unemployment is shooting up; inflation is out of control and agricultural production is disrupted. International donors are deeply concerned. With diminishing resources and revenues, the ability to service debt is severely compromised. Pakistan’s perception as a credit risk has exploded. Under PTI Government the possibility of default was 5%. Since April this risk has grown by the day. Today the country lacks resources to pay for growing imports and make foreign debt repayments. Risk has shot upwards of 75% and continues to grow.

Default is like having both your legs amputated. Whoever provides the artificial limbs will extract their pound of flesh. What will weaken us and force us to be subservient? It is our nuclear capability that has been a deterrent against expansionists who wish us ill. Years of political pressures and financial squeeze by international powers could not achieve this objective. It is being presented on a platter by this crime syndicate now in power.

Imran Khan’s revelations of cipher and conspiracy werebrushed aside by the imported regime and their enablers as bluster. It is evident now that it is much more sinister than just a regime change. It is an all out effort to permanently cripple the nation and bring it to its knees. These ruthless perpetuators have pursued the agenda given to them as subservient slaves.

PM Sharif appears to be a mere errand boy taking dictates from de-facto ruler Nawaz Sharif and his masters in uniform. Recently he was at a global moot in Cairo on environment and climate change. Pakistan is one of the most affected countries by this global devastation. One would have expected him to present graphic details of the recent flood havoc in the county. He should have presented a spirited plea for long term international commitments to overcome the present challenges and what is likely to come. Instead he was summoned to London. PM Sharif abandoned his responsibilities so he could appear before mafia boss in Avonfield Apartments.

For nearly a week deliberations centered on who will be the next chief; how the absconder can return to Pakistan to conquer and rule and above all how to get rid of Imran Khan. There were no discussions on the looming economic disaster, the plight of suffering masses being crushed by inflation and inhuman treatment of millions suffering from recent floods. People and nation be damned.

All energies of this crime syndicate through an undeclared martial law revolve around muzzling dissent. Their cruelty has no bounds. Arshad Sharif was brutality murdered byguns for hire. Imran Khan miraculously survived an assassination attempt thanks to timely intervention by PTI youngster Ibtisam. Imran Riaz Khan, Sami Ibrahim, Ayaz Amir, Chaudhry Ghulam Hussain, Jamil Farooqi and manyindependent minded journalists have been physically attacked or incarcerated. These thugs brutal treatment of Azam Swati is deplorable. They are convinced that cruel suppression will silence opposition.

This propaganda war has another component. The crime syndicate has bribed and bullied majority of the media. Their war rooms are working overtime to concoct stories to attack Imran Khan in every which way possible. Most of their attacks have fizzled out. The latest onslaught through a fraudster in Tosha Khana took a day to expose it as a lame duck. It was intriguing to hear Maryam demand receipts for the sale of a watch while sitting in Avonfield Apartments whose legitimacy is based on a fraudulent Qatari letter.

Imran Khan’s steadfast struggle has won the hearts and minds of the masses along with their prayers. An inseverable bond has developed between them. It is confirmed by the ever increasing attendance of the long march inching its way to Rawalpindi. The showdown is not far. While IK is recuperating from his bullet wounds, crime syndicate and their handlers are shivering like a knife is being twisted in them. They have literally abdicated from putting up political resistance. They are seeking to achieve their objectives through false propaganda or more assassination attempts. This final round will determine whether we will be ruled by the will of the people or through the barrel of a gun. I join millions of others who pray for the safety of Khan.        

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