“This would normally be a rather pleasant time of the day, 45 minutes past 6PM in the evening, but it is dark, very dark outside. I can hear the deafening roar of the skies as the powerful wind howls past by my window. It is a vicious storm brewing up as it begins to rain mercilessly. I will have to choose whether I have to leave for home or wait till the storm subsides”, Ali was thinking and talking to himself in absolute silence.
It had been a regular day at work for him and for all that he knew about Karachi, he was sure his ride home was going to be nothing short of war. He was sure the streets would be flooded and transportation would already have come to a grinding halt. Ali was sure he will find no electricity when he gets home; their power production units either ‘trip’ or they shut them down when it rains.
Only yesterday, he found himself running for cover in the densely populated Gulistan-e-Jauhar locality where political parties clashed and burnt public buses and property in broad daylight. “Are we sure we are not at war? A civil war?” he asked himself as he gasped for breath hiding behind a wall.
Every morning when he steps out for work, he prays with all the vigour that he has, to make that day back home alive. Yes. Ali belongs to a sect in minority in this land of the pure where sectarian and target killings have been on the rise for the past seven months and have claimed hundreds of lives. He often wonders about such a death where the killer does not know why he’s killing and the killed never had a clue he could be ‘targeted’. Professionals are not safe.
The country’s north is gripped in severe extremism, terror and torture. We have imposed a war on ourselves. We are spending millions of dollars against those whom we pampered and protected for more than two decades in-line with the aspirations of the United States. Now we are fighting them, again, because the United States of America wants us to.
Lawlessness, chaos, insecurity and fear. The future appears blurry and bleak. Ordinary men and families such as Ali’s are lost as expenses increase and the country’s production capacity reduces with every passing day. Is there no government? Is there no law? Of what use is a nuclear bomb that cannot unite us? How much more have we left to feed our corrupt politicians and government officials?
We’ll have to stop, think and correct ourselves for nature’s brute force is ruthless, mercilessly and decisive. Let us not drag it that far.