ISLAMABAD - The narrative of Naya Pakistan (New Pakistan) of Prime Minister Imran Khan is not something new. It is actually driven from the guidelines of Pakistan’s founding father Quaid-e-Azam Muhammad Ali Jinnah. From the day one, after coming into power, Imran Khan has been promoting it. Prime Minister Khan has completed three years of his five-year term in office, and this narrative is now taken roots across the country. It seeks to make the Islamic Republic- a meaningful sovereign, peaceful, economically independent, self-reliant Pakistan.
In the event of Covid-19 challenge, Imran Khan through strict and prudent economic policy managed to turn around country’s shambling economy. He has been successful in steering the country out of chorionic problem of current account deficit. This success, together with power sector reforms had pushed the economy into the growth-mode.
His policy of smart lockdown has also paid the dividends. Today, major segments of economy including manufacturing, exports, construction, agriculture, tourism and country’s foreign exchange reserves are running with positive outlook. Tax reforms are also being carried out.
Prime Minister’s flag ship social safety programme “Ehsaas”, aiming at fighting poverty and uplifting the poor segment of the society, is being appreciated by the international community as a success story. Shelter homes and mobile kitchens are being expanded across the country. A tailor made youth development programme ‘Kamyab Jawan’ is on the verge of launching. Prime Minister’s policy agenda to combat climate change through 10 billion trees flagship programme is also underway and earning international kudos.
From the day one after coming into power, Prime Minister Imran Khan has been open to reform election laws to ensure impartiality, fairness and transparency in country’s election process so that no one could level allegations of rigging in elections. Apart from granting right to vote to overseas Pakistanis, the government is trying to introduce technology based e-voting system.
Likewise, Local Government reforms and Madrassah reforms to promote single education system in schools and reforming anti corruption laws are part of Imran Khan’s government reforms policy.
Nevertheless, despite a number of initiatives the ‘Service Delivery’ being the cornerstone of good governance still remains a grey area and most challenging one. This is largely because of dismal response of the civil service in addressing the public complaints in judicious and meaningful manner. Despite many attempts, Prime Minister still unable to turn it up to the mark. The slower it works, slower is the service delivery. People seeking resolution of their day to day problems at tehsil and district level virtually get tired in the process because of bureaucratic hurdles. Senior civil servants blame political interference by party in power for bad governance. Revenue Departments is said to be the most challenging government institution to set right. Rampant bribery and nepotism is order of the day, which is primarily because of interference of the reigning political dispensation. Unfortunately, data suggests that ninety five percent of rural population across the country remains victim of this unjust and cruel system.
Prime Minister’s initiative of Pakistan Citizen Portal is no remedy in setting right the most powerful Revenue Departments. Experts blame lack of appropriate reward and punishment and monitoring system to overcome perils in efficient service delivery. This is frustrating the end users of the service with disappointments the grass root. Pakistan’s judicial system in lower courts also needs massive reforms to ensure easy and cheap justice system. Increased frequency of a direct interaction between Prime Minister and people at grass root warrants Prime Minister’s attention. This may not be a practical proposition. Some wise brains also suggest to increasing frequency of Prime Minister’s popular TV programme “Aap Ka Wazire Azam, Aap Kay Saath”. This concept of open public courts can provide solace to the people but again its scope is very limited. Hence, Prime Minister Imran Khan needs to pay serious attention to the grey areas of service delivery at the grass root level. He can opt for Chinese model in fixing this problem. It’s time for Prime Minister Imran Khan to ponder some revolutionary steps towards crowning his vision of New Pakistan with success. It’s not too late!