It is a theater of the absurd, where over-stretched dramas, almost always lacking in depth and meaning, are staged regularly to the detriment and displeasure of a trapped audience. This week’s show revolves around the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf, National Assembly Speaker Ayaz Sadiq and the PML-N, among other regular cast members. The plot is rather simple: the PTI sends resignation letters to Mr Speaker, who intuitively turns towards the government – the PML-N – for guidance, which then advises him to sit on them while it weighs the pros and cons of available options, as the situation takes different turns, never allowing the ruling party to extract a certain answer from the prevalent chaos. Like all bad dramas, desperate attempts are made to sell the obvious as a mystery. It is a transparent mystery, where what is seen is never stated, and with no words lent to clear images, the absurdity is cleverly sustained to keep the show going longer than necessary. It used to work quite well. When the craft was unknown, the characters new and promising, the good and bad in them yet to be explored and exposed, the script fresh and unpredictable, the climax unexpectedly exciting. Time had its way with all, the players and the played, making everything painfully obvious.

The PTI is still torn over the matter of resignations. Mr Imran Khan may chant whatever he likes atop his container, but the reluctance of revolutionaries in bidding farewell to the house is a matter of record now. Mr Shah Mehmood Qureshi was specifically asked to confirm resignations, and he didn’t. On Wednesday, twenty-five PTI MNAs out of thirty-three visited the Parliament, but never managed to make the trip to the Speaker’s chambers despite repeated requests. If they were in fact eager to say good bye, they would have availed the opportunity. They deliberately didn’t. If Speaker Ayaz Sadiq had acted according to his non-partisan constitutional position, and sought guidance solely from the law, he would not be writing letters complaining to the ECP, which has absolutely nothing to do with accepting or rejecting resignations. Members of the government, who routinely lecture the country on the importance of rule of law and the need to follow the constitution, did not hesitate one bit before using the Speaker’s position to bargain, play politics and intimidate the PTI, compromising its integrity in the process. PTI is uncertain about resignations. The government is unsure about accepting them. The speaker plans to do whatever he’s told, as opposed to what he is legally obliged to do. Everything – so obvious, so very absurd.