Will Injured Imran Get Sympathy Votes Now?By Maria Sultan • May 8th, 2013 • Category: Lead Story, Politics, Worth A Second Look • 31 Comments
Why nothing happens in a straight forward and normal way in Pakistan? All over the world elections are held, but not with such incidents, accidents, and strange happenings. Nothing is boring and slow in Pakistan. Stuff has to happen in this land of excitement, and there is no dearth of it. Despite of all the violence from the TTP, things were moving quite well for the election campaign, when the Khan fell and the whole scenario has changed.
PTI recovered quickly from the initial shock after the fall of Imran Khan from that makeshift life (whose brilliant idea was that?), and they quickly stated cashing in on their leader’s injuries and we are watching an hurt Imran Khan lying on hospital bed in bandages urging his supporters to not give up and vote for PTI. Doctors has given him three weeks rest at least. Imran Khan has one head injury and two spinal cord fractures though he is conscious and is fully alert from the mind.
But everybody is asking what happens next. It was good of PML-N leadership to react gracefully. Shahbaz Sharif visited Imran Khan in the hospital and Nawaz Sharif showed sympathy in the rally and cancelled his today’s rallies. It’s a very good gesture and one has to give them credit for showing this big heart at this critical juncture of campaign, where they could have spread more disappointment and panic in ranks of PTI.
I know from the Karachi sources of the PTI that on Thursday, they would bring Imran Khan on stretcher to the rallies in couple of places, though doctors are not sure about it, but with the help of air ambulance that is possible. But what effect that would put on the election campaign and voting pattern on 11th May? Imran has completed almost all the campaign and only Pindi, Islamabad, and Lahore were left, so there is not much problem there. But the question is that whether his injuries would discourage voters from going out on polling day, or would this have magical effect on the swing voters?
I guess in rural Punjab, things would remain same, but in urban centers of Punjab, Imran may get little more than he expected due to this untoward accident. I don’t see much movement happening on this front just due to this except in KPK, where emotional silent voters will swing in favor of Imran. But I guess things are decided somewhere else?
Spinal and head injuries don’t go away easily unfortunately. Their after effects are far reaching and as Imran is over 60, and no matter how much strong he is, he is a human and at this age, spinal and head injuries are bound to have negative effects. Would local and foreign establishment can afford to have him in this condition at this point in time?