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It is widely argued that an embittered Nawaz Sharif has gone into low profile since his party failed to get majority in the Feb 8 2024 general election.

In my view, however, he’s not out of public view as such if we take into account his active participation in recent Punjab government meetings at which not only did he convey to the participants his world view, he also issued directives to the provincial bureaucracy in relation to the ongoing and planned development projects in the country’s largest province.

Secondly, he met his party members from the Faisalabad Division and spoke at length about how looks at the current situation.

That he still laments or bemoans his ouster from the prime minister’s house in 2017, describing it as “gross injustice” is a fact. He’s been repeatedly telling people that if he had been allowed to complete his term the country would have progressed in ‘leaps and bounds’.

Nawaz Sharif, in my view, is preparing himself for the next general election, which can take place in less than two years in view of the gravity of challenges facing the country and the existence of a woefully weak coalition government, which cannot deal with the challenges of terrorism and economic impasse head-on owing to a variety of reasons.

The spurt in terrorist activities, including the killing of five Chinese engineers working on country’s mega hydropower project a day ago, clearly indicates the erosion of state writ on a brisk pace since the arrival of the present government, although the performance of the interim government led by Anwaarul Haq Kakar was not good either.

Relegating himself to a position of a veteran adviser or ataaleeq of Punjab chief minister Maryam Nawaz in view of the enormity of challenges was a good move that Nawaz Sharif made following the Feb 8 general election. The present government will surely fall.

Nawaz Sharif, however, will not be held responsible for its failure. In other words, circumstances have forced Nawaz Sharif to keep a low profile.

Zahoor Mahanti (Karachi)

Copyright Business Recorder, 2024

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