LAHORE - Thank God, the four-day sit in has come to an end in Islamabad peacefully- with an agreement of far-reaching consequences between the Tehrik Minhajul Quran Chairman Dr Tahirul Qadri and a team of negotiators comprising important leaders of all four ruling coalition partners.Although not all the demands made by Dr Qadri have been met, what he has achieved can be categorized as a stupendous victory. He has been away from the political scene for a long time, but he has now been recognized by the government as a formidable political force.The willingness of ten top leaders to hold talks with Dr Qadri at a much-derided container showed the importance TMQ chairman was given. The agreement between the two sides shows that the system did need the reforms consistently pointed out by the TMQ chairman. And if Dr Qadri had not led such a huge long march to the federal capital, the changes in the system to be made in the light of the new accord would not have been possible.Leaders of a number of political parties had gathered at the Raiwind farmhouse of Mian Nawaz Sharif on Wednesday. All of them were critical of Dr Qadri for leading a march to Islamabad at a time when the general elections were only a few weeks away. They were apprehensive that the initiative was aimed at delaying the electoral process, something which would not be in the country’s interest.But now all such apprehensions should come to an end. Let’s analyse point by point the salient features of the agreement:It has been agreed that the National Assembly would be dissolved before March 16. This means the ruling coalition has changed its earlier stand that the legislature would work to its last day- March 16.Once the legislature is dissolved before the completion of its term, elections will be held in 90 days. Another important point of agreement is that the credentials and eligibility of the election candidates will be scrutinized for full one month. Articles 62 and 63 would be applied in letter and spirit and unless the Election Commission of Pakistan clears a candidate, he will not be allowed to start his election campaign.This will make the task of the political parties very difficult. They will have to be very careful while selecting candidates and in case a party erred, it will have to pay a heavy price as its candidates may be declared ineligible.Another major gain for Dr Qadri is that he has been given a role in the selection of the caretaker prime minister.At present, it is for the prime minister and the opposition leader in the National Assembly to select the man to head the caretaker setup.But under the new agreement, the ruling coalition would evolve “consensus” with the Pakistan Awami Tehrik chief and propose two candidates for the post. Then the ruling coalition would discuss these names with the opposition leader, as provided in the Constitution.Dr Qadri has shown flexibility on his demand for the reconstitution of the Election Commission of Pakistan because of some constitutional difficulties. The matter would be discussed again at a meeting to be held at the TMQ Secretariat in Lahore on January 27. In case the matter remains unresolved in that meeting, the next meetings would also be held at the same venue.Even if the ECP is not reconstituted, the commission members would have to work quite impartially because of what Dr Qadri has been saying about them during the past few days. They will have to prove through their conduct that they are not the custodian of the interests of the parties who had nominated them. It has also been agreed upon that the electoral reforms mentioned in a Supreme Court judgment of June 6, 2012 would be adhered to in letter and spirit.The TMQ chairman is a gainer also because the government team has agreed to withdraw all cases against the long marchers and not to victimize the organizers.Analysts say that the ruling coalition has accepted the terms of the TMQ chairman keeping in sight their future interests. The PPP is convinced that it will not be able to win the next elections because of its poor performance during the past five years. So, it thinks the toughest conditions agreed upon through the new declaration would affect mainly the PML-N candidates.The major loser in the prevailing situation is the Pakistan Tehrik-i-Insaaf. It supported the demands of Dr Qadri, but preferred to not join the long march, forgetting that at present Dr Qadri dominates the political scene and the PTI doesn’t stand anywhere.After the signing of the agreement, it can be expected that the next elections will be absolutely free and fair and held on time. Also now it be confidently stated that the political system will continue to work smoothly, a claim which could not be made a few days ago.Before the long march many people were speculating that the democratic system was facing a serious threat. PML-N leader Chaudhry Nisar Ali Khan was the one who had said that political leaders’ gathering at Raiwind on Wednesday was because of the threat to the democratic system.