Monday, February 18, 2013

25 and indifferent!

Today is my birthday and I have turned 25. I have become more indifferent and blind to what’s happening around me. I am comfortable in my cozy bed knowing I am safe. All these killings and violence are just numbers. I don’t watch TV because I don’t want to get upset. The most disturbed I get is when my breakfast is not served on time. The most tense I get is when I am waiting for my visa for the vacation in Paris. I don’t read newspaper because there is chance the news would ruin my mood. The most I do is copying a Facebook status which says “I strongly condemn sectarian killings”. Something that means to me is wearing tags. I would attend 2 parties every month on an average where as a social welfare I would ask people to pray for Pakistan.

I wasn’t like this. I used to go light the candle in hope for Pakistan. Is Pakistan taking its revenge for what I have done to it? I was actually planning on voting this year. I had finally realized that I have no right to comment on the politics in Pakistan if I am not part of the election. But that’s the most I have decided to do for Pakistan. Although it’s my right but I would really be doing this country a favor. After all, what has this country done for me? Given me identity? I don’t want this identity for which I have to be checked in detail at the airports and be called names by the self-secure whites. I haven’t done anything to deserve this. But have I done anything to rectify what our past generations have done to this country? Should I? Can I? All I can do is take my aggression out using the social media, sitting in front lawn, sipping coffee.

Where do people like Aisam-ul-Haq, Arfa Karim, Jansher Khan, Shahid Afridi, Imran Khan, Omer Nawazish, Dr. Abussalam come from? These people tried. There are many more, less famous people and groups who are doing constructive work like The Responsible Citizen (Zimedar Shehri), The Message Welfare Trust (Street Art Competition), who try. I like most try and criticize the politicians and hope that a better political party will be elected for the next term which will fix everything in this country without me having to change or move out of my comfort zone. I know everything about what an elected official should do but I know nothing about what a citizen is supposed to do. For a citizen it is okay to bribe the traffic warden but for a government official it is corrupt to take kickbacks to do routine work. For a citizen it is okay to ask a reference to land a job but for an elected official it is a sin to appoint a reference. This makes me think, if these citizen were given a chance to run the country, would our country be any different?

I can do more than talking big on facebook. I can commit to myself to abide by traffic laws, if I fail to do so I will pay the fine. I will throw the trash in dustbins and not the canal. I will not cheat in my tests; I will fail with integrity if I have not studied. I will try to make donations/ volunteer to help people run social welfare projects which help the society. I will try not to be indifferent. 

Saturday, February 9, 2013


As much as I love my people and my country I sometimes fail to understand why we do something we shouldn’t. Something like telling a beggar to *&#(#)@!. Now, If you don’t want to give him the money don’t! You do not have the right to judge and insult him. If he was annoying you by rubbing his nose on your car window and pointing a finger towards sky and saying ‘Allah k name pae dae dae’ (Please donate in name of God), that’s why they are called beggars. Here, Ignore! The same ignorance we have adopted towards the injustices happening around us. If you have to say something, say something like ‘Allah hum dono ku dae’ (May God give us both). Beggars are smart; they won’t waste any more time on you.

Why is the whole country in such a rush on the streets? We are always late for birthdays, parties and not to be mention weddings. If the phattak (railway crossing) is closed, you will only be able to cross once the train has passed. Remember! Closing of rail track gates doesn’t mean that the two way road has suddenly become one way and all the cars on the other side of the road have taken an imaginary super cool flyover. Stopping your car, after cutting your lane and moving to the coming vehicle lane, in front of phattak gates is not going to:
  • Get you to your destination any faster. In fact, it will only cause delay.
  • Get you a trophy.
  • Make anyone happy.

It is, however, going to block the road which will be followed by a lot of cursing, blaming and more cursing. On the same note, why do we have to fight with the warden if he/she stops us on breaking a traffic law? Through experience I can tell; it’s not personal, he/she is just doing their job.

People judge by the tags you have on. We expect to be respected while we only respect people who drive a four wheeler. Only thing that we ever say to the guard at the school/office/building is ‘let me in’. We want him to greet us but would rarely do so ourselves and even when we do, it is in a mastery tone. I am guilty of judging too. I judge people of being ignorant when they liter.

I am unable to swallow how people can act all so sophisticated and intellectual while not following some basic manners like not littering. It is something tiny but says a lot about us as a society. On a drive some friends were debating how the politicians are ruining the scenic beauty of Lahore by developing/ruining the infrastructure, during which one of them threw a wrapper out of the car. Right in the center of the road, worse was that it was normal for everyone. This is what happens when people focus on getting grades at school rather than education. A kindergartener once handed me a batch which said ‘every litter bit counts’ and I hope she gets its meaning before she sees her elders doing the opposite.  

Why can we not leave pathans alone? Are the other ethnicities in subcontinent jealous of them for not being ever colonized? Khans have ruled the squash world for good twenty-thirty years. Jahangir Khan has to date have an unbeatable world record of 555 consecutive wins.  We should be able to find entertainment in unity, peace and laughter; not by bashing other ethnicities but in small celebrations of happiness.