Advertisement war of political parties in Pakistan

Report – Ali Afzal Khan

The Pakistan General Election 2018 in Pakistan brings new trend of advertisement in mainstream media, which is making a lot of money by this paid content. Nowadays if you put your TV set on you confront with flood of political ads.

These ads are prevalent in both medium of communication; T.V channels and newspaper. Not only political mainstream national parties, but also some religious parties like Tehhreek-E-Labeek and MMA advertise their agenda on all source of communication.

The main purpose behind all these advertisement was to get more votes and to degrade their opponent. If someone critically evaluates these election advertisements he will segregate these advertisements into two categories: performance based ads and trolling based ads.

Performance based ads contain such a material by which political parties propagate the work done by their government in their respective province. Like PPP in Sindh and PTI in KPK.

PPP in their advertisement awkwardly criticized other provinces government. In their advertisement they ironically show the condition of other provinces hospital and contaminated water and claims that they have done a lot of work in health, education, legislation and clean water. They also gave numerical statistics in this regard and relate that these projects for the welfare of working class. PPP have been using the rhetoric of “working class” in their election campaign since their inception. But the condition of working class is not matching with their claims in Sindh.

Real war of election advertisement is between PTI and PMLN. Both of the parties not only criticizing each other but use new innovations and techniques to manipulate the voters’ minds toward them. Everyone can differentiate between the approaches of these two parties advertisement. PTI advertisement based on aggregation toward their opponent. They use CHOOR and DAKOO words in their advertisement. They not only troll PMLN on issues but also on their performance like PMLN leader Ahsan Iqbal state in his Facebook account that PTI not troll us on issues but they troll us in works that we have done in our tenure.

PMLN also showed a little bit aggression toward their opponent but this aggression was against the mismanagement and dishonoring the promises they had made in 2013 election.

PTI criticized PMLN on loan which they got in their tenure and PMLN also counter-productively criticized the PTI provincial government for taking the loan of 300 billion rupees. PTI also censured PMLN government on electricity issues but again PMLN countered this by giving a numerical statics of power project and claimed to generate 11000 MW. They not only stated this but also asked PTI why they did not exporting cheap electricity to other provinces as they promised in 2013.

PML N also targeted PTI’s leader Imran Khan’s Aggression and copy one of the Hilary Clinton advertisement during American presidential election in which they showed kids who were watching the kind of abusive language of Imran Khan and said that these kind of stuff can affect the mind of kids.

Not only the main contender of Islamabad advertise their agenda but also some religious and local provincial parties also advertise their agenda and tried their level best to impart their slogans and manifesto to people. Tilt of all kind of political parties toward advertisement is an ample proof of its importance in this contemporary Pakistani society. All this advertisement war may end in 25th July but the result of the election will tell us the exact fruit of advertisement.


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