After a short break from blogging and going through somewhat of a blogger’s block, I have been reignited to write after all that has happened over the last 2 weeks in Karachi.
Last week was terrible. In 4 days of violence over 100 people were reported to have been killed in various incidents of shootings and attacks by ‘unidentified’ gunmen. These incidents included armed men getting on public buses and shooting passengers, attacking people in residential areas, drive by shootings etc. And through these 4 days it seemed the government was powerless to do anything. Last Friday saw Karachi come to a complete halt. MQM had announced that they would hold a peaceful protest over the spate of violence but dropped the idea given the worsening situation. Traders were closed, buses were not running and the city was at a standstill. Then finally normalcy was returned to the city when certain troubled areas were given in the control of the rangers and police with orders to shoot on sight. It was a bloody 4 days but people were glad they were being brought to an end.
This situation followed the row between MQM and PPP with the former pulling out from the centre and even Ishrat ul Ibad resigning from his post as Governer of Sindh. People feared the worst and well the 4 days of violence proved they were not misplaced in their fear.
However just when one would think things will be normal in the coming week, Mr. Zulfiqar Mirza had other ideas. Speaking to media from a gathering at Mardan House, home of ANP Leader Shahi Syed’s house Mr. Mirza launched a verbal diatribe against MQM and Altaf Hussain in particular. Now this was Wednesday night, in fact the wee hours of the morning. He gloated that he went and met Afaq Ahmed (MQM Haqiqi) and that in his opinion Afaq was the true leader of the urdu speaking community. That he was a victim rotting in jail for 8 years without a single case proved against him and to top it all if he is a criminal, murderer etc then Altaf Hussain is 100 times that. The ANP Leaders present seemed powerless to stop ZM from continuing and were visibly troubled and anxious over what will undoubtedly happen.
It wouldn’t have taken anyone 2 guesses as to what will follow. Thursday saw a fresh spate of violence in reply to Zulfiqar Mirza’s verbal attack. 15 people were reported to have been killed, 27 vehicles were burned, some shops were also burned, there were protests all around and the city was once again brought to a standstill. The general feeling amongst people as displayed by their facebook and other social networking sites was that ‘Karachi Burns’.
Ethnic violence and sect killings are not new to this city. We have seen it before in the mid 90s. And the divide in Pakistan of being Balochi, Pathan, Urdu Speaking, Sindhi and Punjabi has been there since inception. We have not actually become Pakistani. We are still confined to being from our ethnic backgrounds before being Pakistani. We haven’t taken ownership of this nation. Our identities vary. The corrupt, power hungry leaders continue to feed on these divides and well what we have is generally a dim outlook for this country.
We cannot move forward unless we stand up for being one. Karachi isn’t the only place in Pakistan with these problems. We have been seeing something of the other happening all over the country with terrorist attacks, blasts, violence etc. If we keep allowing ourselves to be overtaken by irrational emotions which are completely misplaced in my opinion then the corrupt will continue to rule over us. Unfortunately the % of our population which understands this and even reading this blog is very minute. The masses are out there in rural Pakistan. Miscreants make use of these irrational and misplaced emotional baggage for their own gains. In the end it is the nation which loses out. We have been losing out for the past 65 years and we will continue to do so unless we rise out of these mirky mists and clouds.
I wasn’t going to rewrite the whole blog but decided to add on to it for the following two:
A PPP Leader was shot dead apparently somewhere. I haven’t been able to find anything on geo or dawn and the tv is out at our place. However a friend messaged and our driver also had to turn back from Korangi road because apparently the place was blocked and there was disturbance going on over there. Yet another day of disturbance in the city.
Also, Anjum Aqeel (MNA PML-N) is apparently at large. The MNA had been arrested for his part in the National Police Foundation case. However his “loyal” supporters and party workers attacked the police van and personal transporting him and broke him free. The MNA decided to stay at large apparently despite the PML-N being a party which is for the people and takes out long marches and protests for the betterment of this country. Mian sahib, a few words to shed light on this please.