Pakistan enjoys a degree of democracy, and democratic institutions such as parties and the parliament carry out their duties. However, regional and Western governments are invariably attempting to intervene in this 230 million-strong Islamic nation.
Unlike his predecessors, Imran Khan embarked on a new and independent foreign policy by curtailing Saudi influence, while boosting relations with key Islamic nations such as Iran, Malaysia, and Turkey and dramatically expanding ties with China, a military, economic, and cultural powerhouse.
It was in line with Imran Khan’s independent policies that his administration vehemently resisted Washington’s request to deploy American troops in Pakistan following NATO’s departure from Afghanistan. Amid the US Army’s hasty withdrawal from Kabul, Khan made a bold statement in July 2021, saying that “Islamabad would not allow the CIA to use Pakistan’s territories for anti-terrorist operations after pulling out from Afghanistan.”
Since the United States has considered Islamabad as a puppet for the last seventy-five years, Imran Khan’s daring stance did not sit well with American officials, and this led to the beginning of plots to remove Khan from office.
In addition, some Pakistani pundits believe that the Saudis’ unrelenting pressure on Khan to normalise ties between Islamabad and the Zionist regime was the primary factor in Khan’s ouster.
When Khan rebuffed this outrageous proposal, he became the target of a vicious American-Saudi-Israeli conspiracy that resulted in his overthrow. After Pakistan’s new Prime Minister, Shahbaz Sharif, assumed office, the Saudi government immediately pledged a $3 billion assistance package to Pakistan, making the above hypothesis even more plausible.
Nonetheless, Imran Khan, 69, has been out of office for several months, but the former Prime Minister and the head of the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) party has not lost his political clout. Thus, those currently in power mounted their pressure and began manoeuvres against Khan to limit his popularity. In a recent speech at a rally in Islamabad, Imran Khan pledged to file charges against police officers and a female judge. The Pakistani government has responded by claiming that Imran Khan allegedly breached anti-terrorism laws by intimidating judicial system personnel.
Although the police encircled Khan’s residence and sought to arrest him, his enraged supporters flooded the streets, emphasising that their leader’s freedom is their red line. Faced with a strong public backlash, the Pakistani judiciary granted a pre-arrest bail order, delaying Khan’s arrest for the time being.
Pakistan has been embroiled in political turmoil between the incumbent ruling class and Khan’s devoted supporters without any light to shine in the present tumultuous circumstances.