HISTORIC or luridly dramatic but there is an across the board consensus at national and global level that the upheaval of Panama verdict has turned out to be of colossal magnitude. The ouster of Mian Muhammad Nawaz Sharif has not been received and reported in good taste by the international press. The news media around the globe painted a bleak picture that depicts Pakistan as an unstable state which cannot come to terms with its own constitution and institutions. Firstly, the raison d’être cited in the judgement to disqualify Sharif is described as a mere “technicality” and dubbed inadequate to “send the PM packing” as the prestigious British journal The Economist reported. The Independent argues that despite all the financial irregularities reported by the JIT, the honourable judges did not cite a single charge of corruption, embezzlement of public funds, money laundering or misuse of power to rationalize their decision. Kunwar Khuldune Shahid for The Independent termed the legal precedent set by the Supreme Court as “double-edged sword” that can be wielded in future to dismiss any holder of the public office on negligible financial or moral discrepancies. The Washington Post draws a critical parallel between the judicial-activism of Pakistan and Venezuela. Based on the political unrest that swamped Venezuela after the identical and disruptive decision of the supreme court, Ishaan Tharoor forecasts a similar political crisis for Pakistan “at the heart of” which, will be the superior judiciary of Pakistan – A deeply disturbing notion indeed. Secondly, the role of military is also subjected to intense scrutiny by the global commentators. Aqeel Shah in New York Times argues that the financial affairs of Sharif are not transparent. However, the decisive factor behind the humiliating removal from the office was not the financial dishonesty. It was Sharif’s domestic and foreign agendas of economic development, eradication of militancy from the society and normalisation of relations with India that made the powerful military uncomfortable. Assertive behaviour of Sharif and quest for civil supremacy was undermining the dominance of military in state affairs. Similarly, Sadanand Dhume in The Walls Street Journal writes that the weak legal ground of the judgement and the speedy proceedings suggest that the GHQ was in rush to remove Sharif before he could undermine its, top of the food chain status. The reversal of Sharif’s agenda would benefit GHQ greatly to consolidate its grip on domestic and foreign policies. Raza Rumi’s opinion in Deutsche Welle is the harshest of all reviews published in the global press. He begins his analysis by highlighting the ruling of Panama case as “judicial coup”. Rumi describes the civil-military relations under Sharif government “tenuous at best” and cites the trial of former dictator Musharraf, Dawn Leaks and encroachment of civilians in foreign policy affairs as the sources of conflict, which necessitated military to get rid of a powerful and popular Prime Minister. Thirdly, according to the business journal Bloomberg the ouster of Sharif is not only a setback for democracy but a “bad news” for the investors who have put substantial capital at stake in Pakistan’s financial markets, during the past four years. The journal predicts economic meltdown, fiscal and monetary constrains and volatility of Pakistani rupee in the money markets. The interview of the former dictator Musharraf with BBC to rejoice Sharif’s ouster, also included his outburst against the “derailing” effect of democracy in Pakistan. The onslaught of a former military dictator upon democratic process has also solidified the impression that there is way more to accountability and judicial activism than meets the eyes. It is noteworthy to mention the recent speech of Senate Chairman Raza Rabbani in which he advised the parliament, executive and judiciary to function within their prescribed constitutional domains. Rabbani’s statement is an admonition for deep state factors who have rendered the constitution dysfunctional. In a nutshell, the coverage of Sharif’s disqualification in the international press, narrates the account of Panama judgement as a tragedy for the economic progress and democratic process of Pakistan. The open-endedness of the judgement and stringent application of the articles 62 and 63 have pierced holes in the fabric of the constitution, which resemble the extra-constitutional distortions, decreed by the military dictators in the past. Unfortunately, the pillars of state that are meant to ensure stability have become the tremors of instability. Pakistan has been a hostage to extra-constitutional ambitions of institutions for too long. It is about time to invoke the supremacy of the parliament before the sweetness of revenge turns to ashes in the mouths. The writer is a research student of Political Economy at Griffith University, Australia. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org; Twitter: @abdalian4ever ; FB: adnan.hafeez.549 Published in Daily Times, August 15th 2017.