VIP Culture in Pakistan
Oct19

VIP Culture in Pakistan

A very important person (VIP) is a person who is accorded special privileges due to his or her status or importance. Examples include celebrities, heads of state/heads of government andother politicians, major employers, high rollers, high-level corporate officers, wealthy individuals, or any other notable person who receives special treatment for any reason. They enjoy special protocols and many more perks of a luxurious life and that too by government, not by themselves. VIP culture in Pakistan has been a matter of concern for common people. Most of us have experienced the matter first hand at different occasions and places. A very common aspect of the VIP culture is the road blocks mostly in the capital cities like Islamabad and Lahore. Whenever a VIP has to travel via road, the security reaches the spot well ahead and traffic police stops the normal traffic well before that specific person is to pass and it is again on route after such time that they get away safely. The wait for such a long time is very torturous for many people who might have some important stuff to do themselves. The protocol of this type is given mostly to the ministers and other political leaders. The major reason for all the protocol is their safety as the authorities reveal. That may not be the only reason if we analyze some other portions of the world and some past incidents. If we sneak into our country’s history, we find some examples of such cases. There was a baby born in rickshaw as the mother was on the way to hospital for delivery in Multan as the protocol of for0mer Prime Minister Syed Yousaf Raza Gillani stopped the traffic. It is hard to imagine the pain that woman bore during that period without the proper facilities. Failure of the special protocol provided to VIPS is not something impossible. Former Prime Minister of Pakistan Mohtarma Benazir Bhutto was a victim of the failure of the system. Some say that it was an inside job but whatever the case may be, that was an indication that there can be such an incident in the presence of all the security that is arranged. Even the first PM Shaheed Liaqat Ali Khan was also assassinated and the protocol proved to be of no use to his life. Some historians also relate the death of our beloved Quaid-e-Azam Muhammad Ali Jinah to the failure of the protocol. On the other side, when we investigate for similar protocol in many developed countries, we don’t find one at such scale. Their leaders are found walking side by side the common people and...

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Inspiration
Oct18

Inspiration

Let’s just sit back and think about ourselves for a while. We’re all unique personalities and special in our own way. We contribute to this society with our good and bad demeanors. We spend our lives doing whatever gets us going because that is just how we function. We see, we feel, we hear, we touch the world around us. So what was it that made us who we are? That gets us through the day and stimulates our senses? I, for one, would like to believe its inspiration. Inspiration being the act or power of exercising an elevating or stimulating influence upon the intellect or emotions. Think about it! We’ve experienced so much in our lives. We’ve met different people, we’ve seen different people. We’ve been to places. We’ve had our moments both good and bad ones. The accumulative result of all these wonderful things happening around us have actually inspired a personality to develop-that is us! Our surroundings have influenced our being and provide us with inspiration in every walk of our lives. Every individual has his own inspiration. For some it’s a person. One’s parents, teachers, friends or famous personalities. While others have themselves to serve as role models with all the exposure they’ve received of the world and its dwellings. It’s how we take in to something we feel so close, is what shapes the way we lead our lives. Here a chain reaction starts. What inspires us makes us who we are and we ourselves serve as an inspiration for those around us. We in turn influence their lives and on it goes. One being inspires another. Now I’ll let you ponder as to whether you’re a good inspiration or a bad one. I suppose this one little statement might inspire a sense of responsibility among us because one way or another we’re all role models and it’ll be a great help if we conduct ourselves with this in...

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The Malala Conundrum

It was two years ago, on the 9th of this month that Malala Yousafzai was shot by a gunman from the Taliban. Malala survived the ordeal and since then her rise to global prominence and fame has been nothing short of meteoric and has culminated into her being awarded half of a Nobel Peace Prize on 10th October, 2014. The Nobel Peace Prize is just one of the many feathers that Malala has added to her cap since 2012. She has been the recipient of the Sakharov Prize and honorary degrees from Universities such as the University of Edinburgh and University of King’s College. She is perhaps the youngest person to address a UN assembly. The list of her accomplishments is long and diverse. It shows that Malala has been accepted by a large part of the world as an icon of peace and the struggle for the right of humans, particularly women and children, to education. Pakistan hasn’t readily or wholly accepted Malala as such because there are mixed views among the Pakistanis about her story and her struggle.   How many can say that they have rubbed shoulders with UN General Secretary Ban Ki Moon or addressed a UN youth assembly. Malala’s confidence and accomplishments are indeed undeniable. Pakistan has been on the verge of economic, social and political instability for quite some time now. The conditions of Pakistan are such that a large section of its citizens suffer from trust issues. They think about the negative aspects of people and situations before the positive ones. The negatives are usually enough to deter them from even thinking about the positives. Malala’s story has been questioned by many people with this mindset. Some say that Malala’s story is fabricated and unverifiable (at least accurately) and it seems that her fame has been manufactured to serve a dark purpose. Multiple conspiracy theories with regard to the attack on Malala exist. The names of intelligence agencies such as CIA along with terrorist organizations as well as enemies of Pakistan have been added to the mix. Malala’s family is accused of being fame and money hungry and the activities of Malala’s father in promoting her daughter or her cause have not helped in dispelling such a notion. The western world is accused of using Malala to justify their war crimes (drone strikes and what not) in Muslim countries and promoting a bad image of the religion of Islam, a religion that Malala herself follows. Some people question how a 12 year old was able to write about issues which kids of similar ages and coming from similar conditions, don’t have a...

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Unforgettable Calamity: 8th October 2005
Oct08

Unforgettable Calamity: 8th October 2005

It was roughly 9 in the morning on a Saturday, I felt as if somebody was dragging my bed. My mother woke up murmuring that it was an earthquake while my drowsy head baffled between the possibilities of either I was dreaming or something was happening for real. I could hear Arabic verses as she recited them in a state of fright. But our fear didn’t know how lucky we were having these minor tremors in Lahore, while the real trouble faced to the direction of north. We turned on the television to witness one of the worst disasters in the history of Pakistan. An earthquake had struck the northern area of Pakistan. The magnitude was 7.6 on the Richter scale, originating from about 65 miles to the northeast of Islamabad. Muzaffarabad, that claimed to be the prettiest region of Kashmir, was turned into ruins in a matter of seconds. Blissful parents, giggling children, contended souls and breathe taking landscape; everyone and everything went upside down. Shrieks of children echoed from beneath the debris, parents roamed back and forth pleading Lord for help. The streets now had amputated body parts and blood at every step. The ill quality infrastructure brought the first betrayal to these troubled people. The access to the affected area was cut and coming for rescue/evacuation was a real nuisance/problem. The government of that time failed to curb the destruction such catastrophe could cause. The northern region being predetermined as “seismic hazard zone” deserved special attention from the governing bodies so that any unforeseen destruction could be confined to a reduced scale. Having stringent building plans to withstand tremors, better emergency services provision and practical education of the masses about dealing with such calamities such as fre quent drills (for children at schools) are few of the precautionary measures that could have been considered to mitigate the degree of destruction. That unfortunate day claimed about 86,000 lives, leaving 138,000 injured and 3.5 million displaced. The magnanimity and heartfelt concern showed by the Pakistanis nationwide for the affectees was seen as a silver lining to this disastrous occurrence. The nation stood up united to help the fellow countrymen who were going through a rough point in time. People sent all the basic necessity items to them, from blankets to medicines and food; no stone was left unturned to help them. Many people volunteered to work for the rehabilitation of the affectees in any possible way. Pakistanis residing abroad sent huge sum of money as charity; public figures renewed their philanthropic spirit and offered help in all capacity. We were told that due to inadequate hospital facilities up...

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