Sunday, April 10, 2011

Running blind - Bilawal Chowrangi, Karachi

Karachi, April 9: It was around 10.45 pm and I was on my way to a wedding with my family that we saw a white Prado parked at the edge of a road and four, big men fighting over a Kalashnikov right outside it, on the road. This was taking place at Bilawal Chowrangi, near the sailing center. This incident as serious as it was, because it could have resulted in not just the deaths of one of those four individuals but also the deaths of any innocent passerby if the gun was fired carelessly, was not the only thing that grabbed peoples’ worries. In fact, the most horrid thing was that just at a distance of about a minute, a police mobile was standing with 6-7 armed police men. Imagine our shocks that a fight is taking place, there is a threat to peoples’ lives and our police men are just standing there, some even sitting inside the mobile. So my dad stopped the car, considering the police was unaware of the situation, he honked the car, called a police officer and told him about the fight, he didn’t forget to mention the gun either. And the police man very calmly replied,
“Sir, humare paas aisay orders nahin hain.”
Four men are fighting with a Kalashnikov in the middle of the road and our police men are sitting there because they don’t have orders to solve it!!! I ask you that if our police officers have any orders other than to work for the security of our people then why do we even need them? Furthermore when my father insisted that they go, just to make him stop one police man replied that we’ve called another police mobile. And it wasn’t just our car that had stopped, every other passerby, be it a car driver, rikshaw driver, motorbike driver and even men on foot, stopped and informed the police. And our noble police men stuck there as if they were in quick sand that they couldn’t move. I even noted down the number plate of this police mobile, it was “SP3 239”, however I’m sure that even this would be of no use. Whether it was fear that was holding them back or the fact that they knew exactly what was going on but were told not to interfere, is of no value to us, the worrying thing is that we are letting them do this. Every day these same police men harass innocent people on motor bikes and other vehicles to take some or any bribe that they can, yet they let every terrorist, extremist and criminal pass by. And what do we do? Nothing, as long as we get to live in our little bubbles, we don’t care much about what is happening on the outside world. Well here is a news flash for all such people: It is just about time our bubbles burst as well. Each day, our country is being subjected to new atrocities; cannibalism- two corpse-eaters arrested from the Darya Khan area of Bhakkar, Punjab, barbarism- what happened to those two brothers in Sialkot, corruption- what is happening every single day and these are just a few problems to begin with. We have closed our eyes to all such news, events and incidents but have you ever wondered that these events that we hear of are just those few incidents that have had the chance to make it to the news. Everyday a million more incidents like these and many worse are taking place in our country, on our streets, but we have decided to remain completely unaware of them. So what do we do or what can we do? I think the first thing we all need to do is thank God that He has kept us safe when anyone can come and blow out our brains in the middle of the street and if our police is feeling kind enough then they’ll let our family know so they can pick up our body. Secondly we need to ask God for help because deaths are becoming a part of our daily news. But all this is not enough because God helps only those who help themselves. So what else can we do? Take a stand! Use any and all the power that you have to address this issue and all the other issues happening daily. If that night even seven to eight cars had stood in front of the police and insisted that they go solve the dispute then they would have done it under pressure. And it isn’t like no one stopped to protest, everyone cared enough to stop but nobody cared that much to stop long enough for it to make a difference. And guess what? Later that same night, news was given of a clash between two groups and a resultant death at the very same location. Lastly, I think that if our police can’t make a difference then we need to act. I wish that we all had the guts to intervene in such situations and that we could make the risks to our lives take a second hand to the well-being of our society. That is when we see injustice being done we could just get in the middle of it to stop it without worrying about our lives in that moment. Because, in that moment and only in that moment, at least we can say with all the truth that we deserve to live.

Shared with us by an active citizen who preferred to maintain anonymity.