The National Assembly has gone on two-day recess. One has to rely on the Senate proceedings only to find stuff for writing this column. Staying put in the press gallery of the upper house of parliament, calmly, didn’t look possible for me, though. Happenings on the floor remained agonizingly absurd, irritatingly adrift and laughably futile. Often, I felt motivated to shock the worthy senators by shouting: “Where is thy blush?”

Ostensibly, the opposition had convinced the government that the Tuesday sitting should be focused to discuss not so recent developments in Indian Occupied Kashmir. Neither the Foreign Minister nor the Minister In charge of Kashmir Affairs was present in the House, however. We also have a bipartisan parliamentary committee, presumably devoting its wisdom and energy for resolution of the issue of Kashmir. Its Chairman was also missing.

Senator Sherry Rehman of the PPP takes parliament too seriously. In spite of having a rich background of investigative and diligent journalism, she has yet to discover that since 2013, our parliament had consistently been exposing its limits, when it comes to taking control of the political scene.

For having no majority in the Senate, the Imran government is doubly contemptuous of this “rowdy” forum. It seriously believes that the number strong opposition merely uses this forum to embarrass the government with “uncalled for rabble rousing.”

She kept agitating over the absence of concerned ministers and senior officials from the Foreign Office for note taking. Chairman Sadiq Sanjrani left the chair after presiding for a while. Sitara Imtiaz, a fresh turncoat from the ANP, was asked to sit for him. She miserably failed to get assuaging answers from the government and hastily preferred to adjourn the house until Wednesday afternoon. Kashmir, it seemed, did not deserve SOS attention of “our representatives.”

The visible indifference and irrelevance of our parliament regarding the issue of Kashmir looked doubly scandalous, if you care recalling that the Modi government had initiated the process of swallowing Kashmir for good by initiating the revoking of Indian Constitution’s Article 370 from its Rajya Sabha, which is equal to our Senate.

Modi’s BJP does not command the 2/3rd majority there. It even lacks a comfortable majority in the said house. Yet, the Indian government managed the revoking of Article 370 from it during one sitting.

The Imran government never showed any interest to build the counter-narrative to Indian moves on Kashmir by activating our own parliament. After profoundly embarrassing reluctance and delay, a joint parliamentary sitting was indeed summoned in the end, but many days after August 5, 2019. That sitting also ended like a pathetic whimper.

Prime Minister Imran Khan never felt the need of building the national consensus for aptly responding to Indian moves on Kashmir. From heart of his hearts he rather believed that “looters and plunderers,” allegedly crowding the opposition parties in Pakistan, had been trying to bounce back in the political game, while “feigning hypocritical concern for Kashmir.” He vowed to handle the issue, single-handedly as the self-appointed “ambassador of Kashmir.”

His ardent followers seriously feel that by delivering a “historic speech” at the UN General Assembly in September, Imran Khan did succeed in jolting the so-called global conscience on the issue of Kashmir.

The opposition equally failed to keep him focusing on Kashmir by articulating and drumming some potent questions. We could yet not discover, for example, as to why Narendra Modifelt so confident and comfortable to decisively move on Kashmir for snatching its “special status,” even after a “very successful meeting” that Prime Minister Imran Khan had with the US President Trump.

Welcoming Pakistan’s Prime Minister to White House on July 22, 2019, the US President surprised and pleased us, hugely, by expressing the desire of “mediating” for resolution of the Kashmir crisis. Modi certainly subverted his intent by revoking Article 370. The Occupied Kashmir is now split in two provinces. Both are declared as “Union Territory.”

Politicians of all possible shades in Occupied Kashmir remain confined to their homes since August 5, 2019. Hundreds of activists had been sent to jails in mainland India. Mobility of 8 million Kashmiris is firmly curtailed. They have no access to Internet.

Deprived of all modern means of communication, Kashmiris are not allowed to tell their story to the world. Pakistan has surely failed to speak for them. Yet, to look generous and large hearted to the world, we had allowed visa-free access to Indian Sikhs to our side of Kartarpur, a place they consider too holy for being deeply associated with the founder of their faith.

We also appear more active to find means to “viable and long-term peace in Afghanistan.” Taliban are again been pushed to resume negotiations with the USA and to facilitate the desired resumption, Afghan government announced the release of three high-profile Taliban leaders Tuesday. In return, expected is the release of two hostages.

Resolution of the Kashmir crisis does not appear as prominently put in the list of priorities, set by the Imran Government. But the number-strong opposition could also not question the said list with energetic consistency.

For another day, each journalist in spite of being present in parliament building, preferred to find out the latest on Nawaz Sharif, instead of focusing on Senate proceedings.

Until my writing this column, the federal cabinet had apparently said, “yes,” to the demand that Nawaz Sharif should be allowed to go abroad to get his ailment diagnosed and treated. But a committee, headed by the Law Minister, was yet not able to set the modalities for his departure.

The former prime minister is surely being treated as a “sentenced prisoner” by the Imran government, the National Accountability Bureau (NAB) and the courts in general. Currently, he is out on a “temporary bail.” But the idea of his going abroad for treatment had unleashed multiple questions. Legal Eagles of the government are making them more complicated with cunning interpretations of the prevalent laws.

Prime Minister Imran Khan surely hates to appear as if letting Nawaz go abroad, due to a forgive and forget looking “deal,” aka known as “NRO.” The courts and the NAB are also not willing to appear as if being lenient to a “VVIP.”

Everyone in the power structure wants to show the “equality of law” for each citizen of Pakistan. They are also reluctant to “set a precedent,” that may eventually help a huge crowd of “sentenced criminals” to seek “relief,” on the same grounds that helped Nawaz Sharif to go abroad for treatment.

Like it or not, there has to be some sort of a “deal” in the end to manage Nawaz Sharif’s going abroad. He would perhaps be forced to firmly commit the date of his return and to ensure its execution might need to pledge “bonds” of a hefty amount or pricy properties.