Notwithstanding this logic, the PTI should worry as there is a discernable pattern and the pattern is–except Karachi 249–all sets have been won by a rival, the PML-N. In number terms, out of 10 by-elections, PTI has lost nine seats to the PML-N, a big set back while in government Usually, incumbent governments use official machinery to win; the PTI tried to use some leverages associated with a government party, in the Daska by-elections but it backfired and the PTI did not emerge unscathed; it was blamed for using the same tactic played by its competitors, the PML-N and the PPP. The loss of the Khushab by-election is the latest upsets for the Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf (PTI) after Diska, Wazirabad, Nowshera, and Karachi among others. Indeed it is upsetting for any party to have lost so many by-elections in its own government? So is for the PTI. If you don’t notice, a problem is in store for Prime Minister (PM) Imran Khan in the next general elections. If this is a general impression that they’re losing everywhere, so why should we vote for them, and if that continues until 2023, the PTI won’t be able to walk the talk. The PTI spins the loss in by-elections in the following manner: it was the third tier leadership that did canvas as PM Imran Khan could not campaign; the difference remains up to 10K which is not big; also the PTI improved its tally, and these are mostly PML-N seats which it has retained so no a big deal. To the dismay of the PTI government, many surveys and assessments by agencies show the PML-N is making a comeback. It suggests PML-N’s popularity graph has instead risen up. That people have forgotten the mismanagement, corruption, and elite capture associated with the PML-N era is not the case. Pales in comparison is the performance of the PTI with the PML-N which informs people’s opinion, to the contrary. Even more worrying is the victory of those who were wiped in the 20018 elections–as per the PTI narrative–as bandits, looters, and traitors: the narrative of PM Imran Khan seems to have lost traction with the electorates if we consider the performance of the PTI in these bi-elections. Secondly, it is more tragic that the PTI rivals are winning against the federal and provincial governments. The PTI government’s policies are the real reason for losing by-elections, in other words. People have no interest in compulsions and difficulties the PTI government is facing. They just think that inflation is too high and the economy of commoners has badly hit. If the change in the economic team of the PTI government, such as the replacement of Hafeez Sheikh for Shaukat Tarin, fails to deliver on two fronts: first jump- start economic activities and arrest spiraling princesses, then the PTI prospects in next elections will be doomed. The belief that the PTI as a third force held by many quarters and the associated support that comes with this conviction will also be gone if the PTI does not significantly improve delivery from now on. The fact is that whoever captures Punjab, will secure Islamabad. Before it is wiped out of Punjab in the next elections or rendered as a second option, the PTI needs serious retrospection. Tick tock, tick tock, the clock is ticking for the PTI.