We all expect our government to work in the best interest of the people, but when it starts protesting against itself, enough of a sign that something has gone seriously wrong. The PTI’s recent ‘protest’ is an example of this, given the fact that they are the ones in power in KPK. The workers of Tehrik-e-Insaaf, aided by their allies in JI, are blocking national highways leading to the Afghan border in a bid to cut NATO supply to protest the drone attacks, particularly the one in Hangu. It is odd that the provincial government forgot that they have an entire police force at their disposal, considering that it is within its powers to blockade any area in KPK (except for the highways) and search vehicles suspected of carrying supplies for NATO. Instead, civilians bearing flags of both parties have set up tents with blaring patriotic tunes and carry on with stopping and searching trucks for ‘contraband’.

Nobody is challenging the injustice of the drone strikes, but just what gives average civilians the right to take the law into their own hands and attempt to enforce their own version of it? The police in KPK recognises the illegality of the whole affair, but are powerless to stop it considering that their own government is behind it. This protest is sending out a very odd message. It seems that donning the colours of PTI somehow grants extra-judicial powers along with technical expertise that can be used to become an active part of government. Truck drivers with no malintent are being harassed and their goods searched with impunity, while a few MPAs and MNAs look on from the camps, quietly enjoying their cups of tea. Demands to produce proper paperwork are made, and drivers are naturally scared by the mob that awaits them if their work leads them to cross paths with the blockade. These overzealous workers should be encouraged to look at the map as well, as their misconception that their province is the only route to Afghanistan is obvious from their actions. That means that not only is this action against the interests of the citizens, it is ridiculous to the extreme, in addition to being completely useless.

Huge rallies and public demos have led to the PTI gaining a large fan base, but now that it is in power, the party needs to stop using rhetoric to pander to the crowd. The country stands together in recognising the breach of sovereignty by drone attacks. Something needs to be done. But, dragging innocent truck drivers out of their vehicles and damaging their goods while searching them is not it. The UN Security Council proposal is sensible. That is what should be focused on, and Imran Khan needs to get his workers and supporters in check, before it is too late.