History might be made today as the country witnesses its second vote of no confidence against a Prime Minister in our 75-year past—former PM Benazir Bhutto managed to come out victorious after the motion was filed against her. The opposition coalition’s numbers both with or without ruling party dissidents all but entails that the ruling party is set to lose this vote.

But with political activity at fever pitch in both camps, it is clear that the parties are now turning their attention to the aftermath of the vote. For ruling PTI, this entails planning the next move. If the Prime Minister’s recent public contact spree is anything to go by, there seems to be an element of acceptance that the vote might not go his way. And from what is said in interviews, one can assume that even if he were to win the vote through some last-minute wheeling and dealing, early elections would be a very likely possibility, given the lack of majority in parliament. This also means that if PM Imran Khan does end up being voted out of office, PTI is likely to ramp up its campaign of being scapegoated and call for fresh elections to ‘clean up the parliament’.

The opposition on the other hand, is involved in consultations between allied parties; now that their victory is near, the formulation of a new government is perhaps as big a challenge as sending the PTI government packing. With so many parties in alliance, cobbling up a cabinet that is acceptable to all will be exceedingly difficult.

The problem is compounded with the lingering question of Punjab. Due to PTI candidate Chaudhry Pervaiz Elahi’s overtures to all sundry to support his bid for the Chief Minister slot, the opposition alliance decided to name Hamza Shehbaz as their candidate. How this will be received in the medium to long term is anyone’s guess. Some are already speculating that for the PML-N to nominate the father-son duo for the coveted Prime Minister and Chief Minister spots might come back to cause problems later.

Regardless of all of these permutations and potential outcomes, it is hoped that party leaders do not allow for matters to get out of control. Charged ruling party supporters are already burning effigies and carrying out protests; opposition parties have also called on their support to join the fray. It is important that the capital administration and police force maintain order both during and in the aftermath of the no-trust motion. For political parties and leaders, it is important to remember the provisions of the constitution and follow them in letter and spirit during this complicated juncture. This is the only way to ensure that we do not let lawlessness prevail at this time.