DNA Explainer: Which issues would be crucial in the 2024 Pakistani elections?

-Economic woes also plague Pakistan, with inflation reaching decades-high levels. Negotiating a new extended program with the International Monetary Fund (IMF) is a priority for the incoming administration.

-The incoming government will face many challenges, including rising militancy. Over the past 18 months, Pakistan has experienced a surge in militant attacks, despite previous military operations driving out such groups. Militants have targeted various regions, including the southwest, where the Baloch insurgency poses a threat to both local and international interests.

-It is believed that the Pakistani army may be backing Nawaz Sharif this time around, indicating the complex interplay between the military and civilian leadership. Furthermore, Pakistan’s relations with its neighbours remain strained. Recent border tensions with Iran and ongoing disputes with India add to the complexities faced by the incoming government.

-In this electoral landscape, democracy itself is at stake in Pakistan. With Imran Khan’s PTI barred from the polls, their candidates are running independently, highlighting the challenges to fair and inclusive elections. Despite predictions of a victory for PML-N, the future of Pakistan’s democracy remains uncertain.

As Pakistan heads to the polls, the outcome of the elections will shape the country’s leadership and also its trajectory in addressing pressing economic, security, and political challenges.

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