PTI Chief Imran Khan Inaugurated Pakistan's 22nd Prime Minister

Pakistan Tehreek e Insaaf (PTI) Chief Imran Khan became Pakistan's 22nd prime minister after his 22-year-long quest for the highest executive office in the land. What is the historic significance of this event for Pakistan's democracy? Has it finally ended the three-decade-long dynastic duopoly of the Pakistan Muslim League and the Pakistan People's Party which are controlled by Sharifs and Bhuttos? Will the emergence of the PTI as the 3rd political force likely reduce corruption and improve governance in Pakistan?

Is Imran Khan's nomination of Sardar Usman Buzdar as Punjab Chief Minister a mistake? Will Prime Minister Imran Khan make mistakes as he begins his tenure? Will his opponents jump at every opportunity to attack him when he makes mistakes? Should he be allowed to make mistakes as he learns on the job? Is he entitled to a honeymoon period?

 Do the Pakistani military and intelligence agencies call all the shots in Pakistan? Is the military's role in Pakistani electoral process highly exaggerated? Are there other forces including political parties and the voters which are as influential or even more influential in determining the outcome of elections? Does Imran Khan owe his victory to the alleged military support?

How is ISI different from other national intelligence agencies like CIA? Are Pakistani intelligence agencies unique in their influence on politicians and the political processes? Why does US President Trump think "Deep State" helped his opponents? Why did US Senator Charles Schumer warn Trump by telling MSNBC host Rachel Maddow: "they (intelligence agencies) have six ways from Sunday to get back at you"?

Viewpoint From Overseas host Misbah Azam discusses these questions with panelists Sabahat Ashraf and Riaz Haq (

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Riaz Haq said…
#ImranKhanSpeech was by far one of the most relatable and honest account of problems that the country faces by a prime minister. #Pakistan #education #PTI #ImranKhan

Prime Minister Imran Khan’s maiden speech highlighted some major issues in our education system that he would like to address. Here’s what he said.
Imran Khan’s maiden speech as the 22nd prime minister of Pakistan has sent ripples of optimism across the country. The speech was by far one of the most relatable and honest account of problems that the country faces by a prime minister and one that made many (those who can think that is) realise the myriad challenges we have to deal with as a nation. Although the scale of the problems is daunting, the prime minister hit the nail on the head by reassuring the people that they needed not worry (ghabrana nai hai) and that he would be the one at the forefront of the storm.

While all the points the prime minister touched upon are vital to changing the fate of this country, his realisation of the importance of education and the need for addressing this highly neglected sector is what truly stood out. To put the words to paper, here is all the prime minister said about education in his speech.

The Problems
Education was among the major problems in Imran Khan’s maiden speech. He started off the speech section with reference to the stress Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) laid on the importance of education. Khan related Prophet Muhammad’s policy following Muslim’s victory over Meccan disbelievers in the Battle of Badr. The Prophet (PBUH) decreed that any Meccan prisoner of war who educated 10 Muslims would be set free, making known the importance education for Muslims and how it was imperative for progress.

The prime minister asked people to reflect on the county’s state of education. Khan said there were over 22.5 million children out of schools in Pakistan (download full Pakistan Education Statistics 2015-16 report) today, a fact he mentioned at four different times during his talk. He also asked people to gauge how much the West had been spending on the education of children. Khan said a majority of Pakistani children were enrolled in public schools, where education standards were highly unsatisfactory. Resultantly many parents were forced to get their children educated in private schools, which was a highly expensive exercise for most parents in Pakistan, especially the salaried-class.

Over and over again, the Pakistani prime minister spoke make the people realize the importance of educating the less privileged sections of the society. He said if population continued to rise and the mammoth number of children continued to remain out of schools, there would be no jobs available to these uneducated Pakistanis.

Presenting his policy guidelines for reforming the sector, Khan said he would like to see the Prime Minister’s House turned into a top-class elite research university. He said the PM House had an excellent location, which should be the case for a top university.

He said his government’s utmost effort would be improve the provision of education in government-run schools. Khan said the government would do all to raise the standard at public institutes. He said they would invite educationists in the private sector to come forward and acquire premises of public schools on rental basis to be used in the second shift to provide quality education to children. The prime minister said the education crises would be treated as an emergency and his government would put out-of-school children back in schools.

Khan also discussed children enrolled in mardassas and said they would be provided opportunities to pursue mainstream education once they got done with their madrassa education. He said he wanted madrassa students, who were close to 2.4 million in number, to become doctors, engineers, judges and generals, adding that his government would focus on ensuring that madrassa students are incorporated in the national mainstream.
Riaz Haq said…
Maryam Nawaz Sharif's leaked audios of conversation with her uncle PM Shahbaz Sharif:

The first clip purportedly features a conversation between PML-N Vice President Maryam and the premier about Miftah, who has reportedly faced criticism from within the party for taking tough economic measures.

The PML-N vice president has publicly stated that she does not agree with the decision to hike petrol and electricity prices, saying she did not own such decisions, whether her party was in government or not.

"He doesn't take responsibility [...] says strange things on TV which people make fun of him for [...] he doesn't know what he is doing," the voice said to be Maryam's says in the alleged clip.

"He clearly cut corners," the voice said to be PM Shehbaz's is heard as saying.

"Uncle, he doesn't know what he is doing," Maryam purportedly says, as she wishes for the return of PML-N stalwart Ishaq Dar.

Former finance minister Dar is set to return to the country next week to facilitate PM Shehbaz on the economic front.

The second clip allegedly concerns a conversation between the premier, Defence Minister Khawaja Asif, Law Minister Azam Tarar, Interior Minister Rana Sanaullah and former NA speaker Ayaz Sadiq about the resignations of PTI lawmakers from the lower house of parliament.

A third clip purportedly features a conversation between Maryam and PM Shehbaz regarding the return of former army chief retired Gen Pervez Mushar­raf.

The former military ruler’s family publicly confirmed in June that he was “going through a difficult stage" where recovery was not possible while Inter-Services Pub­lic Relations (ISPR) Director Gen­eral Maj Gen Babar Iftik­har said Mushar­raf's family was in contact with the military regarding his planned return.

Discussing this in the alleged clip, the voice alleged to be Maryam's can be heard saying that she "sees this coming", adding that she said the same to Nawaz in a phone call.

"I told him to tweet this. He listened to me immediately," the PML-N vice president allegedly says, adding that the move was "opposed" by several people. She allegedly reasons that showing "magnanimity" in this situation would help the government save face.

She said that there was nothing in the leaks that was similar to the "anti-Pakistan conspiracy of Shaukat Tarin", referring to the audio clips attributed to Tarin regarding the International Monetary Fund programme.

Meanwhile, Interior Minister Rana Sanaullah appeared to play down the matter while speaking on Geo News show "Naya Pakistan", saying that nothing definitive could be said about the prime minister house’s security being breached until the leaks were investigated.

"I don't think we should take them so seriously since this is so common," he added.

“If the probe proves that it’s not safe to talk in the prime minister house and somebody has done this [spying] arrangement, then it’s really serious but it is inappropriate to say this without proof.”

Sanaullah did not reject the content of the audios, instead, saying that the current setup's "good governance" was reflected through them.

He also said that the prime minister had taken notice of the leaks and would consult his cabinet on the issue tomorrow, adding that the matter would be sorted out in the next few days.

On the leak where Maryam could allegedly be heard criticising the finance minister, the interior minister said expression of opinion was allowed in democratic and political systems, adding that Ismail was criticised by outsiders so it made no difference if Maryam or some others in the PML-N did so as well.

"What was wrong if Maryam said some of his decisions cost us politically."

Sanaullah also seemingly blamed the finance minister for the recent high fuel adjustment charges, asking why they couldn't have been spread over a period of months.

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