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An anomaly called Imran

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After over two decades in politics Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI)Chief Imran Khan’s personality and politics both seem increasingly unpredictable, vacillating between controversies and contradictions. Today it is not clear whether he is a charismatic leader or a celebrity — though that is not to say that a celebrity cannot become a charismatic leader if the required characteristics are imbibed.Celebrity status is the outcome of extraordinary performance in a specific field, such as sports, showbiz or science. It goes on to manufacture a cult of fans who are unquestionable devotees, unwillingly to discern between the celebrity’s public and private lives.

A celebrity has fans while a charismatic leader has followers. Fans are only concerned about performance or physical features; but for followers a cause, ideology or way of life are what compels them to follow someone.

Many celebrities have been pushed into new roles because of their status, but most simply fade away. Most celebrities who catapulted themselves into politics to reach parliament failed to reach their goals because their new role was transposed as a reward for their previous one. Thus, Imran can be called a charismatic player, but not a charismatic political leader.

A scrutiny of Imran’s political rhetoric, twists and turns reveals he could be a promising candidate from the platform of an established political party, but not a leader who could usher political change. Many commentators hypothesise the problem lies in his ego and personal aggrandisement, forcing him to top up his celebrity with the coveted Prime Minister’s (PM) office.

The forthcoming elections will prove this hypothesis whether he maintains interest in politics or not, particularly if he does not become the PM or after spending five years in power.

Every step Imran has........

© Daily Times