Fatima Bhutto has once again ruffled some feathers. The Bhutto scion was invited to speak at the Jaipur literature festival and created quite a stir when she arrived for her talk with Ayesha Jalal. This time around, Fatima Bhutto has once again attacked and ridiculed the idea of joining Imran Khan’s Pakistan Thereek-e-Insaf.
With several choice words for PTI leader Imran Khan, Fatima Bhutto had once again set the record straight for her stance on PTI. “He has an incredible coziness not with the military but with dictatorship,” said Ms. Bhutto for Imran Khan. From his anti-women stance on the landmark bill in the parliament, to his support and defense of the legacy of former dictator Gen. Zia-ul-Haq and then more recently, Gen Prevez Musharraf – Fatima was out for the jugular – in this case, Imran Khan’s.
Imran Khan has seen unprecendented support in the recent times. In what he very emphatically terms as a ‘people’s tsunami’, the cricketer-turned-politician is out and hell bent on promoting himself as the face of change in Pakistan. His anti-US, anti-war on terror stance has seen him garner a lot of support from the Pakistani people who see him as a breath of fresh air. Clearly, Fatima Bhutto disagrees.
“As a woman I worry very much about Imran’s politics,” she told the audience while talking about the PTI leader. She was speaking about the amendment in the Hudood Ordinance – a landmark bill in favor of rape victims which Imran Khan opposed. Questions have always been raised about Imran Khan’s secularism in the Pakistani circle – of how committed the promoter of change is to minorities and to the issues.
Fatima Bhutto has always been of an opinion that politicians in Pakistan don’t talk about ideas, but rather people. “What is sad about the political culture of Pakistan is that we don’t talk about ideas, we just talk about people. Gender is never a substitute for ethics or justice,” she said in an interview to Deutsche Welle late last year.
PTI’s Central Vice President, Dr. Shireen Mazari has called Fatima’s ‘tirade’ baseless, adding that while, “We all respect and admire the spirit of empathy present in young Fatima Bhutto’s writings, for the people of Pakistan but she is still ill-informed about the realities prevailing in the country as she has not yet spent enough time here”. Dr. Mazari also added that Fatima Bhutto’s exposure to the problems of the people in Pakistan is quite limited, as she has not spent enough time in the country.
Answering a question at the Jaipur Literature Festival of whether she sees Imran Khan as the savior for the nation? Fatima Bhutto answered with a very empathic, “No, I don’t think so”. Clearly, Fatima Bhutto is one person who is safe from Imran Khan’s PTI Tsunami.