The Islamic Republic of Pakistan is currently at total war with itself, with constitutional institutions contributing to the rot. Factors contributing to this state of affairs include declining foreign direct investment, raging short-term inflation, aggravated political unrest following the May 9 attack on military institutions by Imran Niazi's party, and a rise in terrorist-related fatalities.
The Pakistan Army is embarrassed by the photo showing Lt Gen Salman Fayyaz Ghanni, the then-commander of the Lahore Corps, begging with the PTI rioters on May 9 to spare Jinnah House, the commander's home, and his family. While Ghanni was fired for being a coward, his successor reportedly declined to assume the position of Pakistan's most powerful Corps Commander, indicating a rift within the Army on how to deal with Niazi. Lt Gen Syed Aamer Raza is the new commander of the Lahore Corps.
The PTI lawmakers and rioters also vandalised the statues of Pakistani war heroes. In retaliation, the Army under General Asim Munir is now filing charges against them under the strict Army Act and Official Secret Act in order to get around a court that is openly lenient towards Niazi and his former soldiers. Top PTI leaders have abandoned the former cricketer, starting the process of Niazi's isolation, and there is a good chance that the PTI party, formerly the favourite of Rawalpindi GHQ, would be outlawed.
However, Pakistan watchers claim that unrest and unrest will persist in the Islamic country until September, when both the PTI-appointed Pakistan President Arif Alvi and the Chief Justice of Pakistan will step down from their positions. This is because the two constitutional heads have a soft spot for Niazi and his brand of radical politics.
Despite the obvious political shambles, Pakistan reported 226 terrorist-related deaths in April 2023, the highest number since February 2022, with a small rise in terrorist kills and an 86% spike in security force fatalities. This information points to a rise in terrorist-initiated violence and growing terrorist capabilities on the ground, with Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province in Pakistan ranking first in terms of violence, followed by Balochistan, Sindh, and Punjab provinces.
The Tehreek-e-Taliban, a terrorist organisation based in Pakistan, has carried out at least 148 assaults and claimed 294 lives as of April. Since July 2020, at least 28 militant factions, including Baluch groups, have joined the TTP. During last Eid, banned jihadist organisations like Laskar-e-Toiba (LeT) and Jaish-e-Mohammed (JeM) openly collected $300 per family in Pakistani rupees as “Fitrana” while Abdul Rehman Makki, the deputy emir of LeT and a globally blacklisted terrorist, campaigned for the recently launched Pakistan Markazi Muslim League in preparation for the upcoming Punjab Assembly elections.
The IMF has yet to deliver the USD 1.1 billion tranche to the impoverished nation, and as the Shehbaz Sharif administration struggles to deal with the political mayhem of May 9 in Pakistan, the economy of that nation has reached a breaking point. According to the Sensitive Price Index, short-term inflation reached 45.62 percent during the first nine months of the current fiscal year, while FDI inflows fell by 22.5% to USD 1.04 billion.
Pakistan draws the least foreign direct investment (FDI) in the area, and over the previous three years, inflows have decreased from USD 2.6 billion in 2019-2020 to USD 1.9 billion in FY 2022. During the week ending April 20, the nation's foreign currency reserves increased slightly to USDF 4.46 billion.
In conclusion, Pakistan is now caught between a rock and a hard place with an unstable economic and political system and the Pakistan Army's image in ruins due to dishonest, power-hungry politicians like Niazi.