Weekend Off For The Prime Minister
Reports indicate that Prime Minister Imran Khan has decided to take some time off for 1-2 days.
By all indications, it has been a taxing time in office for the Prime Minister. Aside from the usual administrative woes and economic troubles that have harried the ruling party since it took office, the recent rise in political tensions is sure to have taken up yet more of his time and energy. Already the government has been blamed for price hikes, sluggish growth rates and general economic woes among the population.
There has been much trouble from the embattled opposition. On the one hand, the government has been embroiled in a difficult process of letting former PM and PML-N supremo Nawaz Sharif go for treatment abroad in a relaxation of his incarceration – with critics both within and outside the ruling party claiming that this was, in effect, the equivalent of a National Reconciliation Ordinance (NRO) – which PM Khan had claimed he would never grant. On the other hand, veteran politician and influential Deobandi cleric Maulana Fazal-ur-Rehman led thousands of his followers to the federal capital, demanding nothing less than the total resignation of the PTI-led administration, focusing on the PM himself. Even though the sit-in protest (dharna) by the JUI-F in the capital has now wrapped up, the protests have moved to what is being described as a “Plan B” – a series of road and highway closures across the country.
In this context, reports indicate that the PM has decided to take this weekend off at his Bani Gala residence in Islamabad: choosing to spend time with family and avoiding party and political engagements for Saturday and Sunday.
It is expected that the PM will return from this period of rest to a busy schedule, which includes decision-making on a National Tariff Policy and a federal cabinet-level committee to handle the strategically vital China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC).