The PDM leaders must be feverishly thinking of ways and means to avoid holding elections to the Punjab Assembly, which have been fixed for 14th May by the Pakistan Supreme Court, since they know that the PDM will be routed ( as all opinion polls as well as the bye election results indicate )..
Their leader Nawaz Sharif, who does not dare returning to Pakistan and remains holed up in one of his several luxurious flats in London, has announced that references to the Supreme Judicial Council of Pakistan will be made against the 3 judges who gave the verdict. But this would not undo the legal efficacy of the judgment.
The Pakistan Parliament has passed a resolution rejecting the verdict. But this resolution is null and void as explained by me, as it is against Article 224(2) of the Pakistan Constitution.
What then can the PDM leaders do ? Here are some options which may have possibly occurred to them :
1. Refuse to release the funds for the elections to the Election Commission of Pakistan as directed by the Supreme Court. Na rahe baans, na baje baansuri.
The problem here is that the ECP would in that case immediately inform the Supreme Court, and the Court would haul up the Govt for not complying with its order.
2. Rig the elections in some manner, so that whatever be the votes cast, the result will be favourable to the PDM.
But this is easier said than done. The ECP, which had earlier succumbed to PDM pressure ( as evident from the postponement of the polls to 8th October ), knows now that the Supreme Court will be meticulously watching it and be breathing down its neck, and would haul up its members for contempt if it does, or permits, anything improper.
3. File a petition before the Supreme Court requesting for constituting a Full Court to rehear/review the 3 judge bench decision.
But constituting a bench is the sole prerogative of the Chief Justice, and the Chief Justice, who is firm, and was on the 3 judge bench, is unlikely to concede to this request.
4. Declare war on India or Afghanistan on some pretext ( e.g. atrocities on Kashmiris ),and announce an emergency, thus providing a pretext for postponing the elections.
The problem here is that war is an expensive affair, and the Pakistan Govt cant afford it. Moreover, the Pakistan military may not agree to this option, and such a war will be condemned by the world community. Also, wars have uncertain outcomes.
5. Start large scale disturbances in Pakistan ( to create a pretext for declaring emergency ), and attack the polling stations using PDM goons if elections are still held..
The problem here is that Pakistan has adequate security forces–an army, para military forces, and the police– to deal with such a situation. So this option is also out.
What then will the PDM do ? No one can predict or conjecture. But its leaders must be mulling and racking their brains day and night over their predicament and nightmare to find out a viable solution to their problem. They cannot permit early elections at any cost. That will be suicide for them.