Democracy and democratic processes have never been counted among Pakistan's strength. For a country that has seen decades of military rule - interspaced with some semblance of elections from time to time, the upcoming polls has assumed such significance that even families of terrorists are becoming possible targets of terrorism.
This after the country's National Counter Terrorism Authority (Nacta) reportedly informed the country's Election Commission that there are security threats to electoral candidates including terrorist Talha Saeed, terrorist Hafiz Saeed's son. Others in the list include Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf chairman Imran Khan and Awami National Party leaders Asfandyar Wali Khan and Ameer Haider Hoti.
The mastermind behind the cowardly 2008 Mumbai attacks, Hafiz Saeed floated a party - Milli Muslim League - to contest the elections and while this party was barred from participating, it will contest on the cover of Allahu Akbar Tehreek (AAT) - a little known political entity. The Jamaat-ud-Dawah chief's son Talha, son-in-law Hafiz Khalid and many others have been nominated.
As per a Dawn report, chief of Nacta has now included the name of Talha in a list of political leaders and electoral candidates who face possible terror threats. Attributing information from unnamed sources, the report further highlights that Nacta has warned against suicide bombings and use of IEDs.
Ironically, Talha's father himself has been behind several such incidents and carries a $ 10 million bounty on his head by the US. He was under house arrest till recently.
Widely recognised as a terrorist and wanted for killing hundreds, Hafiz Saeed has been looking to gain political legitimacy in a country where he enjoys safety and patronage. And AAT will now contest elections from Sindh, Punjab and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa on provincial and national assembly seats, as per several media reports.