Pakistan consists of more than 60% of young population and have long history of student politics. Almost all political parties have understood the importance of youth politics and had invested in students through different ways by engaging them at college and university level. However, the past governments’ attempts to modernize and make education accessible, motivate youth towards sports, and provide them financial aid for studies and employment, still failed to attract youth to participate freely and fairly in the country’s development or and get them involved in politics in a conducive manner.
Unfortunately, democracy in Pakistani has faced challenges, and has never flourished as an organized institute. Pakistani nation has always been caught in issues like sectarian violence, religious extremism, army derailing the political system, terrorism, unstable political and economic system, strikes and many other factors which has kept the youth in wrong direction. Political parties like Jamat-e-Islami, PMLN, MQM and PPP have never focused on building a political nursery to educate the youth to transform them into major stakeholders or to get involved as decision makers in issues, both internal and external. Instead, these political parties introduced a weapon culture in student’s political system and somehow exploited the naivety and energy of youth towards violence, harassment and building a mafia culture. This atmosphere never allowed the educated families to recognize and appreciate the importance of their children’s participation in Pakistan politics as stakeholders to become agents of change. Due to this disconnect from ineffective and non-healthy political process, Pakistani youth had traditionally refused to support the electoral process for long.
Imran Khan started his journey carrying his strong legacy of cricket especially as captain of winning team of 1992 world cup, and building of his first cancer hospital “Shaukat Khanam”, bringing forth a simple theory of “One Nation Theory” which translated as “Subse phela Pakistan” with a clear message on principles of Insaaf, equality and rule of Law. His voice began to finally reach those who had grown up seeing the country in chaos due to many factors, including terrorism, leadership crises, corruption, economic instability, and failure of “Riaasaat” (State).
Imran Khan’s anti-corruption narrative was the first break-through, which turned him into a national leader and especially for youth, who accepted him not just as their “Kaptaan” (Captain) but also accepted the responsibility of becoming his mouthpiece to spread awareness and educate others.
With the slogan of “Naya Pakistan” and his way to address people as one nation “Mera Pakistaniyoon”, the youth felt instantly connected with him and saw him as the only hope who had the ability to eliminate the family dynasties and bring a change. The youth came out in his support and voted him for a change and for the prosperity of their country. They started believing in his leadership qualities and mesmerizing charisma, each time when he addressed youth on local / international media or on social media. He managed to build an army on “Social Media” whom he named as “Keyboard Warriors”, who supported him and his narrative from every part of the world voluntarily.
When Khan addressed in UNGC, his message of “La ilaha Il lallah” and his love, passion and respect for the Prophet Muhammad ﷺ (Peace be upon him) has made him into a Global Muslim leader! His simple life, believing on the supremacy of Allah and following the principles of the greatest leader in the history of mankind Prophet Muhammad ﷺ (peace be upon him) has attracted the youth to believe that he is the only competent leader who is a role model for the Muslim Ummah.
The current conspiracy of “Regime Change” has been rejected by the youth and they came out with their full potential physically and on social media in support of Khan’s narrative of “Ghulami Na Manzoor” and “Imported Hakoomat Na Manzoor”. His 26 years of struggle and living a life of “live what you preach” inspires the youth who feel connected and believe their existence is not just only for their life, but far beyond that, which is to give back to their country. He has transformed the disconnected youth to the focused youth, actively engaged in political arena, immersing themselves in electoral and parliamentary process.
Imran Khan is the only political leader, who has educated millions of people without spending a penny. Today’s youth are actively participating on social media especially on Twitter spaces to collaborate and educate each other in discussion about public administration, reforms, local governance, foreign policy, development process especially economic and social norms and solutions to make Pakistan, a prosperous country.
Since April 10/22, I, like many others, spend most of my time on twitter (@realfaisalkhan) and run daily twitter space with a help of selfless and self-motivated people. The objective of everyone is to spread awareness, and to not only educate ourselves but also others. We are trying to form a social media community (@PTIOfficialSMC) of like-minded people to support Khan’s narrative, vision and participate actively in the political system.
Last but not the least, I believe it is important to mention Imran Khan’s sadqa jaria, in the form of teaching the entire nation the most important concept, which can change their way of life and their dependence on people if they believe in this:
1. إِﻳﱠﺎكَ ﻧـَﻌْﺒُﺪُ وَإِﻳﱠﺎكَ ﻧَﺴْﺘَﻌِﲔ (Iyyaka na'budu wa iyyaka nastaeen)
“We worship You alone and no one else, and rely on You alone and none else”
Each time before starting his speech, he reads this qur’anic verse. He has taught us to only believe in Allah, obey him and only seek His help!
2. لا إله إلا الله (La ilaha illallah)
“There is no God except Allah”
He taught us that believing on the actual essence of La ilaha illalllah frees you from all the worries.
Thanks Imran Khan may and may Allah bless you!