Pakistan’s long-awaited and biggest electoral contest finally came to an end as the clock struck 5 PM on February 8. There have been small incidents of clashes among different political parties in several constituencies, while a few incidents of minor violence have also been reported in Karachi, and other parts of the country. The overall electoral process remained smooth and peaceful throughout the day. During the election, over 12 crore registered voters used their right to vote and elected their representatives for the National as well as Provincial assemblies. With the successful mark of 12 general elections, the nation and the country’s democracy successfully achieved an important milestone in the political history of the country.
Pakistan is a democratic country whose appearance on the world map was the outcome of a peaceful political and democratic movement that spiralled over almost four decades commencing in December 1906 and yielded the fruit of independence and freedom on August 14 1947. Democracy offers countless benefits and plays a vital role in the promotion and strengthening of individual freedoms, political participation, and peaceful transitions of power. At the same it, the continuous democratic process ensures accountability of the leaders, the governments, and political parties as well.
Historically, Pakistan went through acute political unrest and choas in recent years, wherein the politics of hatred, confrontation and animosity brought in rigid behaviour and largely polarized Pakistani society. A peculiar security state environment coupled with agencies’ involvement in politics badly tarnished social cohesion and distorted national unity in the past. The rumours and propaganda regarding an extension in the tenure of the caretaker governments and no holding of the election have died their deaths as the nationwide election successfully concluded yesterday, the 8th of February.
Historically, every contest ends in the championship of a group and defeat of another but victory or loss is not permanent, as these competitions come at specific intervals. Each party, candidate and their supporters, all must demonstrate resilience, big-heartedness and political wisdom. Pakistan is passing through a crucial transition period that merits utmost caution and sagacity from the state institutions and the political groups to safely pass through this point in time. As a nation, we owe a common agenda of the country’s prosperity and public well-being, hence our victories and defeats are also shared and combined. So, the winner should hug the loser and seek his cooperation, while all should play their role in strengthening democracy, and service to the country and the nation.