Hope and change and Imran Khan

Jawad Zakariya/Wikimedia Commons

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  • Imran Khan blasts Pakistan's People's Party as "creatures of the status quo"

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  • Imran Kahn seeks to remedy #Pakistan's "slavishness" by ending dependency on foreign aid

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In Pakistani politics, when one is widely compared to the country's most famous (infamous?) political grandmaster, Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto (president from 1971 to 1973 and prime minister from 1973 to 1977), it is time to pay attention. This is the notoriety now being accorded Imran Khan, a Pakistani cricketing hero-turned philanthropist and then politician. The comparisons are remarkable given that a week ago Khan was considered to be a political nobody.

The event that has launched Khan to the forefront of the chattering classes' political conversation was a rally held by his Pakistan Tehrik-e-Insaaf (PTI) or Pakistan Justice Movement party on October 30 in Lahore, the capital of Punjab province. The rally attracted as many as 100,000 supporters and may have been the largest single political gathering in the country in decades. The number of attendees floored political analysts and rivals alike and convinced many that Khan had finally arrived on the "mainstream political scene."

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