Pakistan election results: Voters reject religious extremists

Supporters of cricket star-turned-politician Imran Khan, chairman of Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI), gesture to party songs, as they celebrate a day after the general election in Karachi, Pakistan July 26, 2018.

Dubai: This election has been unique and surprises keep on coming as the polling results are announced.

Apart from Imran Khan’s victory, another important factor that has surfaced quite significantly is the worst ever defeat faced by the extremists and religious factions in the country.

Top religious party chiefs such as Maulana Fazalur Rehman and Sirajul Haq were summarily rejected by the voters. Similarly, candidates of Labaikh Tehreek lost miserably and none of the candidates fielded by the banned religious outfit headed by Hafiz Mohammad Saeed could secure a seat. It is a clear indication that Pakistani people are freeing themselves of the clutches of such groups.

Now the question is whether Imran Khan would be able to deliver as the Prime Minister of Pakistan. 

Khan’s promise of 10 million jobs and five million homes is definitely a daunting task to meet. The reality may strike once the euphoria of victory subsides as the PTI would have to deal with many serious challenges facing the country.

Election victory is the first step but the real challenge lies ahead. Some of the major issues Imran will have to deal with are: revival of the economy, fight against terrorism, effective foreign policy, healthcare, education and unemployment.

To begin with, he will have to address immediate economic issues as external debt has risen by $22 billion while Pakistan’s reserves at the moment are barely sufficient to cover two months of imports.

But Imran is expected to overcome major issues as he has an excellent team of experts who have already laid out plans for the country. We have to wait and see if they will be able to implement the plan in the proper manner –  because governance in Pakistan is the biggest challenge.

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