Honesty, integrity and credibility are the strengths of PTI. In the muddled political arena of Pakistan, Imran Khan stands out as ‘Mr Clean’. His credentials are unmatched by any politician in the arena. The Shaukat Khanum Memorial Cancer Research Hospital (SKMRH) and Namal College offer state-of-the-art facilities to the public as social services where the rich and poor are treated alike.

Kaptaan’s leadership credentials are well established. He leads from the front while the team follows. In 1992, he played a pivotal role in winning the World Cup for his country. In the 20th century, the Chinese Revolution stands out as it was well-lead and effectively managed. While Mao Tse Tung was the leader, Zhou Enlai was the manager of the movement. Today, China is poised to lead the world; it is already the second largest economy behind the United States of America, leaving Japan behind.

In the 1992 World Cup victory, it is widely believed that while Imran played the role of Mao, he was ably supported by master strategist Javed Miandad as Zhou. The man who built PTI was Comrade Ahsan Rashid; he was the undisputed Zhou Enlai of this movement. The historic Lahore Jalsa of October 30, 2011 followed by the gathering at Mazar-e-Quaid on December 25, 2011 were mainly due to his efforts.

After the Karachi Jalsa in 2011, Ahsan Sahib had arranged a dinner in which the old and new guard of the party were invited. It proved to be the proverbial last supper, as all the old players were identified and marked for elimination. First, the think-tanks were disbanded, then the shadow cabinet, followed by an attack on Ahsan Sahib himself through the inter-party elections. One by one, the institutional strength of the party was neutralised to be replaced by a few tainted individuals who were otherwise unfit to be a part of a change-oriented movement.

After the death of Zhou Enlai, Chairman Mao came under the control of the infamous ‘Gang of Four’ who started calling the shots. Mao was greatly discredited by their acts. After his death, though the Chairman’s body was embalmed and kept in Tiananmen square, the remembrance services of Zhou are revered much more. The gang was then eliminated through firing squads, but the damage to the country and Mao’s legacy was done.

Four is not a good number for revolutions and change movements. Kaptaan is also surrounded by a ‘Gang of Four’, who ensure that the party rank and file is kept away from the leader and their voices are muffled. The Chairman is there, but without the Zhou Enlai of the party, the movement continues to drift in the opposite direction. The party’s strength is projected as a weakness. The gaps between the leader and led are being widened for vested self-interests.

The electables belong to their constituencies and they should be confined there. Parties follow an ideology which is implemented through an organisational framework, not individuals. The famous ‘Ghanta Ghar’ of Faisalabad is important only for the people who live around it. In the seventies, Zulfiqar Al Bhutto (ZAB) remarked that politics is no longer in the control of Mirs, Pirs, Waderas and Sardars. In 2016, no force on earth can bring them back to life. At best they can operate around their ‘Gaddis’ (support base). The ‘Ghanta Ghars’ are neither transferable nor mobile to be carried around from place to place.

PTI is a national movement for change. Constituency-based politics cannot undermine its broader agenda. The gang of four brought down Chairman Mao in China, and now a similar group surrounds the Chairman of PTI in Pakistan. The party rank and file has rejected this gang, the sooner they return to their ‘Gaddis’ the better, as they have become an embarrassment for the party and its leader.

Wali Khan, the great ideologue used to say, “One cannot run with the hare and hunt with the hound’. Being a clean party, PTI has no room for the corrupt. The foul odour of corruption has the potential to neutralise the movement so painfully launched by the Kaptaan and ably supported by ideologues like Comrade Ahsan Rashid and his team. Recently, there have been several resignations as a protest against the party’s flirtation with the corrupt and tainted politicians of the status-quo. After the death of the great leader in China, the gang of four were awarded the death penalty for their misdeeds; only time will tell the fate of future of the gang that surrounds the Kaptaan, but they have been successful in derailing the movement by dismantling the party’s infrastructure and policies. Change is inevitable, the question is who will lead it? Kaptaan can play that role but not with the infamous gang of four that surround him.