Hits and misses: In review, over 100 days of Imran Khan as Pak PM 

WION Web Team New Delhi, Delhi, India Dec 21, 2018, 09.51 PM(IST)

File photo: Pakistan's Prime Minister Imran Khan. Photograph:( Others )

Story highlights

Imran Khan has gaping challenges staring him in the face. Putting Pakistan's dwindling economy back on track and smoothening ties with India and the United States are some of the key issues where PM Khan needs to channelise his force. 

Pakistan's cricket hero Imran Khan stunned the world when he took charge as the Prime Minister of a nation that has a perennial conflict on its borders and an economy that slowly inches toward a crisis. 

In August, the Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf chief was sworn-in as the country's 'Wazeer-e-Azam'. PTI's sizeable election victory, coupled with Khan's charisma and international recognition, suggested the days of 'Naya Pakistan' were finally here. 

Promises galore

Khan promised an economically empowered, democratic, terrorism-free, welfare state as he fumbled his way through his oath-taking ceremony. Shortly after assuming office, Khan, along with his cabinet, rolled out a series of austerity measures, suggesting that his government means no foul-play and only business. 

Within a fortnight, the Pak side met with the Indian counterparts over Indus Waters Treaty. Khan also sent out a message of cooperation and dialogue to India. 

'100-day agenda' to 100-day report card

It must be noted that Khan had proposed a '100-day-agenda' much ahead of Pakistan's general elections. On the occasion of crossing the threshold of completing 100 days of governance, PM Khan's speech in November put a spotlight on some of the key achievements of his cabinet -- some of which included bolstering the FIA and setting up a task force for improved government hospitals, Pakistan media reported.

Khan, in his speech, added that Pakistan has already signed deals with over 20 countries, encouraging sharing of information and assets recovery. In under six months, Khan visited UAE, Saudi Arabia twice and had gone on an official trip to China and Malaysia.  

He also mentioned that the anti-encroachment drive initiated by his government helped in recovering around Rs 350 billion worth of land.  

However, a sizeable portion of his address focussed on what all he plans to achieve for the country in days to come -- promises of providing better education, nourishment to the underprivileged, more privileges to the farmer community and a bolstered economy which currently awaits an IMF bailout. 

Hits and misses

Barely six months into governance, Khan-led PTI government scored a mix of hits and misses. While critics continue to point at the need of experience that manifests Khan's cabinet, the PTI government did manage to deliver on some tasks as promised including reducing fuel prices by removing taxes. 

Tackling corruption

During the 90s, when Khan first stepped into politics, his goal was to bring 'insaaf' and put an end to corruption.

PTI vowed to force Pakistanis to pay their taxes -- but there is a long way to go, with only around one per cent of the population complying, news agency AFP reported  

International relations

Imran Khan has gaping challenges staring him in the face. Putting Pakistan's dwindling economy back on track and smoothening ties with India and the United States are some of the key issues where PM Khan needs to channelise his force. 

Khan vowed to rebalance Islamabad's relationship with the US, months after US President Donald Trump suspended security aid over Islamabad's alleged failure to target militancy along its borders.

But the road to better relations with Washington looks a difficult one, especially when it goes through Afghanistan which sits as a sore site between Islamabad and United States. 

Earlier this month, Khan noted that Islamabad joined Washington's "war on terror" in 2001, and paid a heavy price for the alliance. He stated that it sparked an Islamist backlash and homegrown militant groups who turned their guns on the Pakistani state, costing thousands of lives. 

Meanwhile, the Khan government would still need to find a definitive ground to improve trade with India and address the Kashmir issue. 

The opening of the Kartarpur Corridor was certainly a welcome move, so was his remark which came earlier this month wherein he noted that Pakistan wants "something done about the bombers of Mumbai", tacitly acknowledging that the attack of November 2008 originated from Pakistani soil.

Yet the mood in the country is one of unbridled optimism. Khan's young supporters believe he can build a corruption-free, prosperous 'Naya Pakistan.'

Khan's critics, on the other hand, believe his biggest challenge is managing expectations of those who see hope in him, "because he's almost promised them the moon," Raza Ahmad Rumi, the editor of a Pakistani daily was quoted by a Reuters report.