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Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Are we really progressing?

By – Kashif Sarmad Khalid 

The news popped up in the Lehya; a small town of Punjab, Pakistan. A man drowned in the river and his dead body was badly stuck in the mud of the bottom of river. The local residents tried to rescue and taking dead body out of the river but due to lack of facilities and government assistance; they failed to dig out the body. This caused immense grief to the mother of deceased. The mother was continuously sitting on the bank of river holding the rope which was tied to her son’s body. She still waits there for seven days and kept saying “Help my son”.  

This news could be small for our media houses or for those who enjoys lavish lives sitting in their luxury and million worth bangalows. It could be small news for those who make policy for the country and its inhabitants or talking about the revolution. It’s also tiny news for those who are keen to bring Tsunami of change in the country. It’s a hard slap on the face of those who still thinks that we are progressing as a nation.

We talk about the success of military operation Zarb-e-Azab; the operation that has lost its significance for the reason that all the wanted militants reallocated their bases in Kunar and Noristan of Afghanistan, everyone knows about it except our beloved military. We are spending millions in the war against terrorism but we have ignored our own war against poverty which has given the advantage to the terrorist organizations by manipulating it to gain the sympathies of some ignorant people in the society.

On 1st July 2014, another heart shattering incident took place today when twenty five year old Rabia of Khushab, Punjab of Pakistan, jumped into Jehlum River along with her three daughters to commit suicide. Although the woman and one of her daughters were saved, bodies of the other two daughters could not be found. According to the details, Rabia had been married to Zeeshan eight years ago and had given birth to three daughters. Her husband always wanted a son, which was not to be, and this became a reason for constant rift between the two. Zeeshan often beat her for this reason and when he again beat her on 1st July, Rabia took her daughters to the river and all four jumped in.

The heart breaking and unpleasant episode indicates the wretched custom and rituals that have become overriding the education as well as our Islamic teachings. The satire of the fate is these incidents have happened due to the deficient of justice system in our country. Unfortunately, after sixty seven years of independence, the justice system in Pakistan still needs to be implemented.

Prime Minister, Mian Muhammad Nawaz Sharif constantly talks about the evolution his government will convey on the gross root level but they haven’t conveyed the rescue operation facilities in the rural Pakistan yet. Mr. Prime Minister, regrettably, your government is unable to dig-out the dead body from the mud of the river; Are you really capable to bring-out our country from the quagmire of terrorism, poverty, corruption, bad governance and injustice?

On March 27, 2013 - Forty-year-old rickshaw driver Akbar took poisonous pills along with his wife and three daughters due to poverty. Nearly six thousands suicides have been recorded in Pakistan in the past three years; most of them were male, unemployed and under 40.

According to the HRCP report, the ratio of suicides in Pakistan remained the highest last year, as at least 2,528 people - 1,725 males and 803 females - committed suicide in 2008.  The ratio suggested that around seven people committed suicide in Pakistan every day due to poverty. In 2009 more than 1,600 people committed suicide due to extreme poverty.

Pakistan is among those nations which has the enormous ratio of young people in the population. If this fragment of residents will be suitably utilized; not only I but the rest of the world can assure the economic boost any country could ever observe. The distributing laptops to youths and/or chanting slogans of revolutions (Inquilab) or Tsunami won’t help but immediate steps to accommodate them on merit would be the sole way to save youths to get off track.

The government of Nawaz Sharif in Federal and Punjab, PTI government in KPK and PPP government in Sindh – should formulate a better planning to transport facilities to the people of Pakistan on gross-root level instead of opposing each-other. All political parties are in the government even then they claimed to be in the opposition which is quite hilarious but they all need to be serious this time since temperament of people is running short now.

The mother of deceased Hafiz Muhammad Yousuf is still holding the rope of hope and so we do. We are waiting for the day when we will discover the responsible, thoughtful and honest government who would never let any mother to wait for the possession of dead body of her son.

Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif cried when he saw the mother of Indian Prime Minister, Narender Modi while blessing her son before taking oath for the Prime Minister. I wish Nawaz Sharif could have cried over these incidents and did something for the victims as it is his core responsibility as a P.M Pakistan.

I have just one suggestion for all political entities of Pakistan (irrespective of their political affiliation); cry over these incidents now before people will make you cry someday. 

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