The E-Day is almost here. The soap operas being staged by our dear political forces are almost at its end. We have already seen the cards these parties have chosen to bank on, and ahem! What can one say? We really do have a long way to go, don’t we? As  they draw to a close, here is a look at the key political parties’ election campaigns, we have had the pleasure of watching.

With the highest percentage of airtime dedicated to PTI, it would be fair to begin with the Khan’s party itself.

New dog, old tricks

Starting with a four and a half minute long song, PTI’s election campaigns has been both baffling and cringe worthy.  The song; Bolo kon bachaye ga Pakistan…. Hum sab mil kay Imran Khan.  What is happening here? Are we pledging that ‘We all will, Mr. Imran Khan’ or is the singer asking us all to chant ‘Imran Khan’ in answer to the rhetorical question he asks? Either way, the one point agenda that is behind PTI’s TV campaign is as clear as can be. It is Mr. Khan’s powers that we have to bank upon, not the parties’.

That song has of course been followed by various other commercials and songs but the message remains largely the same. His name is Khan and he is a one man show. To Mr. Khans’ intense shots, add some theatrics by red and green striped bat welders and you have broken the PTI campaign code – PTI is a non-party, led by Khan’s very own list of improbabilities and fueled by teenage hormones. Proof? Here are 31 songs by PTI, ALL delivering the same message. (If you are confused about the correct spelling of ‘Imran’ listen to Ek tsumani, ek toofan Imran Khan).

Of course, the campaign ends on an unexpected note. You have to give it to the PTI media team; using Khan’s recent sound bite from the hospital, and actually ending with 3 seconds of a blank screen peppered by Khan’s heavy sighing and the heart monitor’s menacing beep, beep, beep.

Yes, we are all much moved, but please, do we really have to see that byte 10 times an hour?

Also, saying your Captain would create a new Pakistan, doesn’t really say much for the team that depends solely on the Captain, does it?

The lion’s roar

It isn’t my fondness for large cats or the PML-N, but the maturity of PML-N’s campaign that wins my vote for the best campaign [My vote for the next governing party is another matter] While PTI has not one but two numbers featuring Rahat Fetah Ali, neither compares with Rahat’s anthem for the N-league.

The backbone of the Sharif’s campaign touches on all the right issues including terrorism, power crisis, education and poverty. Maryam Nawaz Sharif, supposedly the driving force behind the campaign, has managed to touch on real issues throughout. In fact, for some strange reason, PML-N remains the only party that has actually bothered to campaign on issues. It is also the only party with a multimedia manifesto available online.


But of course, at the very end of the campaign, the lion decided to jump over the mudslinging wagon and started dishing out some halfhearted jibes to the Captain. Completely in poor taste and not in line with the quality of the rest of the campaign. Bad move, Ms. Sharif.

Sir nahi chahiye

Jhoot No 1 of this article: PPP is running an election campaign.

What PPP is dominantly running sorry, throwing is a tantrum.  First, our dear old party is playing the adult version of jao main nahi khelta. My younger brother is like that. Reprimanded for coming in late or scoring bad grades, he always tries to prove that the adult taking him to task is equally if not more guilty. Of course he is 15 and doesn’t have the collective wisdom of dozens of seasoned politicians, so his arguments are usually more coherent.  But PPP’s jhoot number blah blah campaign is pretty sorry. Brazenly, the party doesn’t even ask for votes instead just focuses on the N league So really, PPP is actually buying a PML-N a lot of airtime.

The second part of PPP’s tantrum is even sorrier. The party desperately plays its hand at emotional blackmail. We are all very sorry that both Bhutto and Bhutto ki beti met untimely, tragic deaths. But are you really serious? All three songs launched by PPP fail completely to talk of awami issues and ask us to vote for them to pay of ‘debt’ we somehow owe to Bhutto and his beti. Be it the reference to jan ki nazar in the first song Bhutto ki beti, the less subtle Bhutto ka qarz wakha in Jiyalay teer chala or the pleading tones of Meri maon, bheno, betiyon rakhna khayal, PPPs campaign is plain sad.

What they are essentially saying is we shouldn’t vote for a leader whose Jhoot number 28 they are currently airing, but we should vote for the party that proudly owns Rehman Malik, cause the Bhuttos died? Ummm.. …Really, who designed this campaign?

Dear PPP, for next time, I have one word for you, outsource, please.

Oh and dear Bilawal, next time you feel the urge to say sir chahiye, please, for the love of God, don’t make that gesture. Sorry for the Charlie and the Chocolate factory reference, but Veruca Salt anyone?

Astaghfirullah! Le Haram campaign

As for JUI, they aren’t really advertising on TV, but we did catch some ads on cable. Also there is a JUI camp right at the corner and we do hear them playing some Naats, no wait, that can’t be, can it? Oh! It is songs!

Like real songs with music, with proper mudslinging at the balla and the teer.

Oh my God, Maulana Ji, do I have to be the one to remind you of your own beliefs. This, music, is haram, no?

The wait wha… campaigns

The campaign started with fairly melodious Meray des ka pahiya chalna hai, yeh chalta jaye ga. Catchy, but seriously, your ride is a bicycle. A bicycle! It really isn’t the fastest set of wheels you know? From the wheels reference the PML has recently moved to a new bizarre song claiming ‘5 saal main 55 salon jitna kam’.

So, the Chaudharies under the leadership of Dear old Gen. Musharraf, claims to have accomplished 55 years’ worth of development in just 5 years? Isn’t that just incredib…, Oh, wait, whaaa…??

Then there is the matter of a young girl, who has suddenly appeared on our TV screens proclaiming Meri taleem, sirf meray watan kay liye (My education, only for my country), she then tells us to vote for tarazoo (The JI symbol) a party whose ideology really doesn’t allow women to do much in the mainstream. So, again, ummm, whaaaa….?

I remember glancing at the Kite and a ladder or two as well, but seriously? So inane was the message and so forgettable was the tune, that all I could think while they played was, whaaaa…