This is the first time in history that a team has managed to score 10 goals in an India vs Pakistan hockey match.
Pakistan finds itself at a critical juncture as it nav- igates the path towards its next parliamentary election. The dissolution of the National Assembly on August 9, initiated by President Arif Alvi, has set the stage for a series of contentious developments. One of the significant points of contention revolves around the timing of the elections. The 1973 Consti- tution dictates that elections should be held within 90 days of the government’s dissolution. President Alvi’s call for elections on November 6, a date compliant with the constitutional timeline, has stirred debate and raised questions. The Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) has found itself in the midst of this storm. The ECP’s role in ensuring a fair and impartial electoral process is paramount. However, concerns have been raised recently about the neutrality of the caretaker government, which is responsible for over- seeing the elections.
The perception that the caretaker government might be aligned with the opponents of imprisoned former Prime Minister Imran Khan has led to doubts about its ability to ensure fairness. Furthermore, the issue of constituency delimitation based on the latest census data adds another layer of complexity. The decision to proceed with elections using existing con- stituencies, albeit outdated, or to delay elections for constituency redrawing in the interest of fairness, presents a significant dilemma. Both options have advantages and drawbacks, making it a challenging decision for political stakeholders. Amid this evolving political drama, outgoing Chief Justice of Pakistan, Umar Ata Bandial, questioned why the Constitution’s command, which clearly states that elections should be held within 90 days after the dissolution of the assemblies, was being contested. His remarks strike at the heart of the matter, emphasising the importance of upholding the constitutional timeline. He astutely noted that the superior courts would not be bur- dened with litigation if institutions functioned fol- lowing the Constitution and the law, underscoring the significance of resolving issues within the frame- work of the country’s governance.
However, as the nation navigates its path towards elections, the complexities and controversies are far from one-dimensional. Evidence of this has already emerged. The Pakistan Supreme Court registrar, still supposedly under outgoing Chief Justice Bandial’s watch, sent back a petition filed by the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaaf party. It is important to note that Chief Justice Bandial spoke, not from the bench, but at a farewell the Pakistan Supreme Court Bar Association accorded him. Clearly, his poignant words will not be treated as a guiding light.
Internationally, Pakistan’s political developments are being closely watched. While releasing a political leader such as Imran Khan, to ensure fairness, is often seen as an internal matter, the broader international perception can influence diplomatic relations. The extent to which external pressures shape domestic decisions remains uncertain. As Pakistan grapples with these controversies and legal intricacies, the country stands at a crossroads. The decisions made in the coming weeks will shape not only the immediate political future but also the trajectory of Pakistan’s democracy.