Al Azizia reference and Flagship reference verdict are out. PML-N’s supreme leader has been tossed in jail for 7 years in the Al Azizia reference. Meanwhile, NAB has failed to evince ties to Nawaz in Flagship reference, it has filed an appeal against the Flagship reference. Now that Nawaz has returned to Adiala jail. The political hereafter of PML-N will a be like litmus test since the legal battle is disoriented. The government’s 100 days promised much, moreover, the opposition appears to be on a ventilator. The party’s high command remains tranquil after the death of Kulsoom Nawaz. The entire credo hypothesis is on a standstill post, whilst Nawaz and Maryam’s route to jail amid Avenfield allegations. In the incumbent scenario, Nawaz is imprisoned while only Maryam Nawaz is on the lookout for the party, leading the patchy movement of ‘vote ko izzat do’ (respect the vote). However, the Avenfield reference is hanging like a sword over her, haunting her, until the SC and IHC announce the suspension of the verdict. Apart from these cases, the movement may be a farce at this juncture. The rumors are already reverberating that PML-N is endeavoring ‘behind the curtain powers’ to pardon Maryam to extricate the next poster face of the party. The rumor earned weightage when PM Imran Khan and his cabinet members repeatedly spoke of PML-N as an out look for the NRO. It may be true to a scope that PML-N is searching ways to ease the way but asking PTI for the NRO is oversold. Media reports suggest that the PML-N is considering an in-house change following Nawaz Sharif’s imprisonment. It’s premature to motion for an in-house change. The option is beyond the bounds of possibility right now. Firstly, the opposition parties have insufficient numbers. Secondly, they will have to create a rift within the ranks of the government’s allies – BNP (Mengal) and MQM Following Nawaz Sharif’s imprisonment PML-N determined to usher an in-house change, reported the media. It’s premature to motion for an in-house change. This option is beyond the bounds of possibility right now. Firstly, the opposition is not sufficient in numbers. For that, opposition parties will have to create a rift within government allies that is MQM and BNP (Mengal). Secondly, the government hasn’t completed its 6 months yet and the ‘power to be’ is backing it. In case the situation develops, I assume PM Khan will resign himself and call for re-elections. That was hitherto hinted in an interaction with journalists. On the sideline, we should ponder about who will be the joint opposition candidate for Prime Minister? PPP are also in a muddle. The JIT’s report on the fake bank account case is before the SC on the same day as the NAB court’s sentence against Nawaz. The report reveals explosive evidence against the accused. The report carries 27 volumes and a 135 page executive summary. The head of JIT Ehsan Sadiq pleaded that the apex court keep the volumes confidential. The JIT accused 24 persons in the report including Asif Zardari, Faryal Talpur, Bilawal Bhutto, Omni Group, Malik Riaz, etc. Claims against Bilawal Bhutto astounded me, making me wonder if the PPP leadership had lost Punjab for certain reasons. Bilawal Bhutto the new poster boy is being used to revive the party. However, his political career may sink due to the baggage of his father. The report will be used as a political witch-hunt against Bilawal in the future. He has initiated his career and performed well in the 2018 General Election, PPP won more seats than they did in previous elections. Interestingly, Bilawal’s debut in NA is inclusive and not rhetorical in terms of speech. The sources (read JIT) state that 120 agricultural farmhouses have not allegedly been declared by Asif Zardari, Bilawal Bhutto and Faryal Talpur. Furthermore, Bilawal House and Zardari House’s expenditure including renovation bills were allegedly paid through fake bank accounts. My use of ‘alleged’ repeatedly is to make the reader understand that JIT has to manifest the stated facts in the trial court. Asif Ali Zardari’s political maneuvering has damaged PPP. His part was clear to everyone. The role Zardari played in the elections of Speaker/Deputy Speaker/PM/Presidential after GE 2018 forged a split in the opposition. What did Zardari receive in the end? He ultimately hedged in a JIT report which is why he is once again averse to institutions. Asif Ali Zardari might be wondering if he is next after Nawaz. The mutual option left for the opposition party is to take a tough stance in assemblies. Opposition cannot achieve what they publicly claim to. The opposition faces impediments. The major opposition parties have a trust deficit, leaders have not interacted with each other except in parliament. The writer is an academic. He tweets @muhd_hani Published in Daily Times, January 24th 2019.