It is vital for a country created through a constitutional political struggle, to allow democracy to flourish. Our politicians must show grace and magnanimity in victory and defeat at the polls, by submitting to the will of the people. It is the will of people that must prevail and not the egotistic pursuits of individuals, nor the cult-like blind attachment of their followers. The political bickering has increased recently to a dangerous level, creating dissension within Pakistan and amongst the expatriate community to an extent that is dangerous.

Unlike the united Indian expatriate community, who can neither vote in India, nor are allowed dual nationality, Pakistanis are divided along party lines and hence cannot serve as lobbyists for Pakistan in the countries where they live. The recent incident where members of the Association of Physicians of Pakistani Descent of North America were rude to the sitting Federal Minister for Planning and Development was very unbecoming of educated professionals.

In a democratic country, individual citizens must not be permanently wedded to a particular political party but must vote on the merits and credentials of candidates. We must judge them on their performances whilst in power and not on their rhetoric and slogan mongering, especially those who exploit religion.

After the dramatic results of recent polls, in which PTI regained 15 of their 20 seats, the PML-N showed rare grace by accepting the results of the polls. Unfortunately, the outrageous comments of Sheikh Rasheed only reveals the lack of democratic tolerance and sagacity, which is very important in a democracy. This was reflected in the rapid fall of the Pak-Rupee. After the polls have ended, the bitterness must fade away and the party that wins must take the lead.