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Contradiction: Cricketing Perks and Misplaced Priorities

India v Pakistan - ICC Champions Trophy Final
LONDON, ENGLAND – JUNE 18: Pakistan lift the ICC Champions Trophy after beating India during ICC Champions Trophy Final between India and Pakistan at The Kia Oval on June 18, 2017 in London, England. (Photo by Gareth Copley/Getty Images)

Last week Pakistan Cricket team registered its maiden win of the Champions Trophy against its arch rival, India – defeating it with a huge margin of odd 180 runs. This magnificent win was destined to render the ambiance within Pakistan and the world over, wherever Pakistani diaspora resides, euphoric with jubilation and celebrations, with fans brimming with enthusiasm, exhilaration and enjoyment in every possible way!

Despite the fact, that cheering for your team that lightens up your country’s name should be done for the obvious reason of showing patriotism and expressing love for it, it nonetheless should be kept confined to a reasonable extent. Pakistani people are an emotional lot – Making and faking of heroes and zeroes, reverting the two more frequently than Pakistan cricket team play matches and little still wins.

So, after winning the trophy, the star players were showered with a variety of gifts and prizes. Everybody tried to jump on the band wagon, making their generosity count and showing it off in whichever way possible, for one reason or the other.

First of all, Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf’s KP government announced the opening of a school that will be named after the Hero of Champions Trophy final – Fakhar Zaman, where he scored a magnificent knock and was given Man of the Match award.

One wonders at the logic of opening a school in the name of a cricketer, – He is not highly educated, hasn’t got any record of doing social work in the area of education, hasn’t got anything to his credit of efforts for its welfare at all. He has almost no philanthropic record. How come have the KP government made this decision, it betrays common sense and logic.

Secondly, the Chief of Army Staff announced Umrah for the winning team. One cannot digest the inherent absurdity of this announcement. Pakistan Army is a state institution which implies that it draws its funds from the Government of Pakistan which draws its revenues by taxing the people of Pakistan. So it means that Pakistan Army is using public funds or more precisely, people’s money, to expend over something which doesn’t come under their domain of operations. All this in a mere bid to be deemed as an honoring, caring and patriotic person (in case of COAS), or institution (Pakistan Army).

Thirdly, PM Nawaz Sharif has announced a sum of Rs. 10,000,000 for each and every player of playing XI and this is by comparison the most preposterous and disgusting show of all. One would have appreciated the concern, the love and the patriotism of the Premier if the money that was lavishly expended, was withdrawn from his personal bank accounts rather than at the expense of national exchequer. And besides, whats the point of raining a few people with such huge amounts  when they are all financially doing very well than most of the Pakistanis do. Moreover, this amount of money could have been used for many other purposes that could create a difference in the lives of ordinary Pakistanis. But nothing of the sort can happen, as its a mere exhibition like Kings in the old time for their is no feeling of heartache in wasting other people’s money.

It should be noted that this criticism is not aimed at giving prizes and gifts, per se, to people who have achieved great feats for their countries, bur rather at the gifts and prizes paid for at the expense of national exchequer.

Geo TV gifted the winning teams captain Sarfaraz Ahmad with a BMW car which is acceptable as it has been paid for from their own earnings and by the same token the plot of land announced by the CEO of Bahria Town for Fakhar Zaman and 1 million rupees for each player is also absolutely justified as it is not being paid at the cost of public money.

The above examples implicates the contradiction that our country has long been indulged in. As long as its not their money, public and government official should avoid doing it as its tantamount appropriation of nations’ tax money!

I am a misfit in this world!

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Away from technology, away from hectic days of urban life, away from society!

In Feb 2017, I completed my Bachelor Degree. Despite the fact that I have graduated with flying colors, I don’t have any idea of my course in life. What am I going to do from now onwards? What is my future? What should I do vis-à-vis my career? What to do about my own financial security? What steps should I take for self-sustenance etc.?

There could be no two opinions on the fact that I want to take a job accordant with my educational qualifications, but those sorts of jobs require you to have at least three years of experience which baffles a fresher’s mind as to where you will start off when you don’t have that much experience in the first place. But when you eventually do get some low-paying job, way below your level, another sword hangs over your head; that of being ‘overage’ – a disqualifying differential! Besides, by the time one reaches that point, one has already lost all the enthusiasm and zest for seeking a job and doesn’t actively commit him/herself to job searching.

Personally, I have no issues whatsoever with doing some menial or lowly job as the ultimate rationale is to live a dignified life with peace of mind, but that I can’t do on two grounds:

First, I can’t get an inferior job because I am rejected on grounds of being overqualified in this cadre, and secondly, even if I succeed in securing one, I would be looked down upon by my contemporaries, friends, and family, esp. if they are better off as compared to me for opting for a low-grade job. In such an environment, coupled with many other reasons and factors (mentioned below), I cannot survive. I have developed a syndrome of detestation for this world at large and this society, in particular. I deem myself a misfit in this society with misplaced priorities which, in my humble opinion, has caused the entropy that we see in the world today. I wish I could run away, to avoid even the furthest tentacles of this poisoned place and poisoned people with poisoned minds.

But if there were no societal burdens to attend to, or perhaps because of the very nature of our society and our people, I would love to retreat, or rather run away to some faraway place, to some mountain or jungle, where there are no human beings around – which is quite a paradoxical thing to say, where there is no concept of jealousy, no leg-pulling, self-consciousness and showing off for the fear of being laughed at and mocked or despised, where there is no concept of being angry because one forgot to pay Salam to you, where there is no enmity on account of being oblivious of the insalubrity of some distant cousin, where there is no tension of lack of material affluence, where there is no fear of being exploited or taking advantage of someone, where the idea of power and authority is not known, where there is no infringement on rights, where there is no corruption, where there is no adulteration, where there is no oppression, where there is no factory, no pollution, where there is no concept of war, no concept of weapons, no reason to fight, no disputes, no nationalism, no boundaries, no rules, no chauvinism, no fake piety, no hypocrisy, no politics, no medium whatsoever to be connected with anyone! no sorrow of seeing the old and elderly being humiliated for their rightful rights.

A place where there is no sorrow of seeing the old and elderly being humiliated. No sorrow of seeing a little girl or boy stripped of their dignity. No sorrow of seeing unemployed youth with a plethora of degrees wandering around from office to office, dropping resumes, pleading for a job and getting ridiculed. No sorrow of seeing a young man beaten to death over exhibition of his culture, or perhaps where there will be no culture at all. Where there will be no looters of national wealth. Where there would be no concept of labor, no concept of punishment, no complex philosophy of morality and ethics. Where hate will be unknown, where there will be no black or white magic, no fast moving conveyance systems with people who have no time on hand, no such hectic schedule. A place where there will be no injustice, no discrimination, no favoritism, no racism, no laws to regulate lives of people if there are any, where they will not be judged on the basis of cast, creed or color, or the way they dress, or the way they tend to look – where all will be at par with each other, all equal – as one human race, a fraternity above all the differences.

We don’t belong to the world that we see and live in today! Every soul on the face of this planet is wild and free. Everyone wishes to live in such a free place – a place where there will be peace of mind, serene ambiance, pollution-free environment with a perfect eco-system, where plants, animals, and humans live in complete harmony – all contributing to the eternal bliss, eternal love and eternal well-being!

I dream of such a place, I wish it could one day materialize! Amen

[ Originally Published on the Voices of Youth website
 (http://www.voicesofyouth.org/en/posts/i-am-a-misfit-in-this-world) ]

Misogyny – Thy name is PMLN!

The use of offensive language against the male counterparts is quite a norm in the ruling Pakistan Muslim League – Nawaz party, but hurling lewd remarks, caricaturing, uttering abuses and vulgar comments, and false accusations representing the utmost disgust and hatred for women are the hallmarks of PMLN.

Members of the said party had been involved in slandering and mud-slinging against the erstwhile Prime Minister of Pakistan, Benazir Bhutto, whose very intimate photos were thrown down and disseminated in a conservative area just to discredit her – stripping her of her dignity, Mrs. Nusrat Bhutto pictures were also dropped from planes for the very same evil purpose and Jemima Goldsmith, who they accused of smuggling antiquities out of Pakistan let alone calling her a ‘Jewish lobby’ and pestered her to the extent whereby she couldn’t afford to stay anymore in Pakistan and so led to the dissolution of her marriage with Imran Khan.

After Imran Khan married Reham Khan, they had alleged her of being a British women who is oblivious of the Islamic injunctions and norms and values of Pakistani society and that she dances with ghair mahram men and released her videos on social media and calling her a ‘weather girl’ with no journalism degree whatsoever!

Furthermore, they tried to muzzle and blackmail late governor of Punjab, Salman Taseer, by making public the intimate photos of his daughter.

One of the ministers of PMLN, who carries a persona of an educated and well-read gentleman but lacking even the very basics of ethics and morality had caricatured a female member of assembly right on the floor of the parliament. He had uttered lewd remarks and was joined in this indecent and lascivious exercise of spewing indecent and misogynistic comments by his party peers. The very same MP had caricatured a female MP of PML-Q by calling her ‘Penguin’ when she walked with a wobble.

Another minister belonging to the same wretched party passed quite a lustful comment on a female MP of PTI during a parliamentary debate.

This was then followed by accusing Ayesha Gulalai of being held by police for carrying hashish and liquor which later proved a mere slander and farther from the truth.

The tale doesn’t end here! They have accused their own worker, Samiah Choudhary, of being a drug addict while she was found dead in the room of federal lodges allotted to MNA Choudhary Ashraf of PMLN. The investigation report later confirmed, she was raped and killed afterwards.

Also, stories of Hamza Shahbaz, son of Chief Minister Shehbaz Sharif, are well-known. He has had his wife, Ayesha Ahad, beaten by Punjab police in the jail while he himself stood there watching this sorry spectacle.

During the PTI Dharna of 2014, a lot of women participated in the protest which the PMLN termed as Mujra.

On Mar 9, another MP of PMLN used extremely uncouth and insulting language against the female members of PTI’s MP. The MP had the guts to tell all this in a media talk right outside the parliament! The same party members couldn’t get enough of extolling the so called sanctity of the parliament and the use of decent, civilized and parliamentary language.

These are merely a few examples of the Pakistan Muslim League – Nawaz’s hatred for women, always targeting them for character assassination and harassing them in whichever manner they deem good.  In this regard, the criminal silence of its leaders, especially the female members, is particularly condemnable and very unfortunate. This party is founded on the disgust for women – This party bleeds misogyny!

What Is Materialism?

What is materialism? t’is but the lust for money,

transcending all the norms and values of humanity,

totally devoid of love and morality,

to the refined minds, it is only insanity,

because there is no limit to cupidity.

What is materialism? t’is but schism after schism,

judging people on the principles of capitalism,

encouraging absolute hedonism rather than utilitarianism!

juxtaposing with the resourceful lot; seen as dandyism,

little do they know – affluent are those with no ism.

What is materialism? t’is but a constant state of phobia,

states fighting with states, people with people over trivia,

extolling materialism; turning the world into a utopia,

but what happened to Somalia, Mesopotamia, and Libya?

aren’t these the blessings of Capitalism? presented as panacea!

So lets join hands, for the sake of humanity,

irrespective of cast, creed, money and not for vanity,

casting aside all the enmity,

leap out of all the materialistic mentality,

and come together as one fraternity!

The flirter

Daisy, O Daisy!,

You! My love, drive me crazy,

I am cold, gloomy and sad but,

Upon seeing you, I feel cozy.

 

Your elegant gait, your enchanting physiognomy,

Who can withstand, let alone me?

Your svelte hands, slender lips, golden hair,

All combine to fill me with glee.

 

Why do you exchange glances?

Noticing it, my heart dances,

But I remain oblivious of its meaning,

If it’s warning, or implicit chances?

 

I’ve tried, travailed, and did my best,

Because I couldn’t resist,

But ‘a faint heart never won a fair lady’,

Hence sift me through the list.

 

I love you – I wanted to tell you,

But learnt you already had a beau,

So who am I, to meddle in your affairs?

Bid me farewell, – Adieu!

Plight of the Pashtuns And the Khyber Pukhtunkhwa Province

When the war between the former Soviet Union and the Afghan Mujahideen began who were backed by the then Pakistan, General Zia-ul-Haq, offered the Afghan refugees to come to Pakistan and take refuge. He also appealed to the people of Pakistan to welcome them and give them food and shelter as a sign of good-will gesture and that they are our brothers-in-faith.

This offer of the erstwhile President literally wreaked a havoc over the populace of the then NWFP, and aided to channelize the exodus from Afghanistan into the KP Province only. If he was that much desperate why didn’t he ask the administrations of the rest of the provinces to help those refugees, too? Well, He obviously meant the KP province to suffer the hardships only. He wanted to exercise his claim of being a hospitable nation, while implicitly implying only Khyber Pukhtunkhwa province.

The same sorry state of affairs is once again at the threshold of this poor, poverty stricken and terrorism-plagued province as the IDPs of North Waziristan are fleeing their land and coming to KP. It is the only province to bear the ‘Hospitality’ of those IDPs as the Heart of Pakistan – Punjab – has already closed its doors to those IDPs over certain lame excuses. Some of them fear the spread of Polio while others remain in the awe of terrorism import in the guise of refugees.

Sindh Government led by the Pakistan Peoples Party, who claim to be the only true National Party of Pakistan, has already deployed the Rangers over its border to not allow any IDP into its territory. This act of PPP has already forfeited its claim to be the true National party representing and voicing for the whole country and all of its ethnicities.

The IDPs of North Waziristan are not even allowed to cross into Afghanistan where they are reportedly being welcomed and are comfortable than in the camps here in Bannu and DI Khan.

IDPs from NWA are fleeing for safer areas with the herd of cattle.

KP has been suffering since the Soviet war in Afghanistan and this predicament has fortified and reinforced with the War on Terror. The Pakistan Army has been engaged in operations against the extremists and militants in various parts of the Province, e.g. Swat, Bara, and almost all the FATA region. This has caused a huge influx of the people to move to the safer places like Peshawar, Charsadda, Mardan, Swabi, DI Khan, etc. This inrush has left the aforementioned areas in quandary as the resources are not enough to meet the needs of such a large number of people. In fact, Pressure on Peshawar, in terms of being populous, is so much so that it literally is about to implode.

Meanwhile the PML-N government is not doing enough to facilitate them. In fact, Abdul Qadir Baloch of PML-N party, who is in charge of the affairs of IDPs, has said that computer registration of the IDPs has been initiated that would facilitate the government to help them in appropriate way. Giving such statements clearly shows that he is only playing to the gallery. How come a person would have fetched his/her ID card while they were in such a hurry and had been given the deadline to evacuate the areas urgently on such a short notice. Also, those who have now arrived here, how would they go back to their homes and fetch an ID card for the honorable Mr. Baluch to get their issues (like ration and financing) iron-out.

The Pakistan Army has vowed to end terrorism and eliminate all the terrorists now once and for all as it launched its current offensive against the ‘suspected’ terrorists under the name ‘Zarb e Azb’. We hope that all its claims be fulfilled and come true but a serious note, knowing the history of past operations and its results, one cannot hold on to much hope of Terrorism abolishment and Peace establishment.

The only thing I know is that there is no such thing as Pakistani, there is Baluchi, Sindhi, Pukhtun, or Punjabi etc. If it wouldn’t have been so, they would have all been welcoming those wretched people with open arms and warm hearts.