Pakistani daily lauds mature response to Imran Khan’s fall

Islamabad, May 9 (IANS) A leading Pakistani daily Thursday welcomed the mature response of politicians to the plight of Imran Khan who took a 15-foot tumble at an election rally and described it as a departure from all the mudslinging that has characterised the campaigning.

An editorial in the Dawn said that Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) chairman and former cricketer Imran Khan’s injuries resulting from a fall from a forklift during a poll rally in Lahore Tuesday gave the nation some anxious moments and it was a moment of relief when doctors declared him out of danger.

“Unfortunate though it was, such an accident was not entirely unexpected. The hair-raising somersault only underscored the utter disregard of safety measures in the boisterous rallies that are an essential feature of our electioneering,” Dawn said.

“The threat to life doesn’t come from the militants alone; the chaos that is the hallmark of all public activity in South Asia poses perhaps an equal threat to life and limb…,” said the daily.

The editorial noted the “welcome departure from all the mudslinging that has characterised the campaigning was the mature response of politicians – across the political spectrum – to Khan’s plight”.

Khan and former prime minister Nawaz Sharif had been at each other’s throats even before the campaigns began. However, the Pakistan Muslim League (Nawaz) chief announced the cancellation of all campaign activity for Wednesday.

Apart from Sharif, messages of sympathy for Imran Khan poured in from other party heads and politicians.

“Equally heartening was Khan’s own attitude as he spoke from his hospital bed, urging the people to cast their vote May 11.”

The daily went on to say that this maturity has been welcomed by a nation that often views its representatives with cynicism.

“However, one niggling thought remains. Why have many of the leaders moved by Tuesday’s dreadful spectacle not shown the same sympathy for those killed and wounded in the election rallies bombed by the TTP (Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan)?”

“Were these victims and their grieving relatives lesser human beings undeserving of solace because they belonged to the ‘wrong’ political parties?” it asked.

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