1:28 AM

Empathy, anyone?..

My dad's a Mahajir. His family migrated from Bhopal to Pakistan. My dadda was soon-after posted to Interior Sindh and it was in Nawabshah that my father grew up. An Urdu-speaking bloke, in a serious hard-core Sindhi environment. I am not going to go into the details of the kind of bigotry and racial discrimination he, and his family had to face, but to put it mildly it wasn't really very easy for them. The quota system, in the education as well as political situtions caused a great many hurdles in their educational/ professional development. Adding to the whole bit was the feudalistic political situation. The Sindhi wadera's who would get elected to public offices would hire their mazzaras straight off instead of basing the selection procedure on merit. So there were job opportunities taken away, promotions held and deserving scholarships taken away. I'm guessing this is not what my Daddi, daughter of a known lawyer, was expecting when she left behind a life of leasure, an aging father, who refused to leave his city, and her eldest son, so there was someone to look after her dad.

My father, his siblings etc grew up to be much-respected citizen's. Loved and admired, by all. The episodes of racial discrimination from Bhutto's time, acting as anecdotes which didn't do much, other than add a little flavor in their otherwise rather regular lives. There is no bitterness. No racial hatred. Nothing.

...but that's one family, who chose the jo-Allah-ki-marzi-Way. One boy, who chose to chuckle away the rejections and the hatred.

...while some got affected in worse off ways. Who were provoked to a point where they forgot the tehzeeb, the taleem, the terbiat, the entire cultural inheritance, passed on to them by there forefathers. They chose to not 'let-go'. For them it became a matter of pride, of honor, of self-respect.
Then some of them I guess chose to speak againt it. Some sharpened their pencils and took to writing. Some sat on the street corners and argued endlessly over cups of tea.
...then some chose to push a hand... or hold someone by their collar... or slap someone across the face.
Some boys thought of taking up politics. They saw themselves to be the next El Che's of the world. the inequality was too much for them to make peace with. I guess thats how APMSO was formed...

... But a bitter and cynical man can do a lot of harm. Want, for revenge can drive a sane one, insane. Haven't we all felt that?..

...then there is also the whole "power corrupts" phenomenon. The times changed. the oppressed became the oppressors...

I guess what happened after, we all know..














Tis sad, that this had to be ... but why do people not go and look for those who actually gave birth to this all...

Can nobody actually understand where this comes from? Is rage and anger and frustration such alien concepts, that no one can empathize?...

How do you hate the Man who stole only to feed his hungry child, at home?

How do you always chose the right path?

How do you not let rage make you go insane?

How do you put an end to this vicious circle?...

Will someone ever let history be our teacher?...

A quote of Hazrat Ali comes to my mind. I don't remember the exact wordings or the source but it went something like :

"..a society can exist infinitely if its based on kuffer, however a society based on oppression and injustice is bound to be doomed."



Disclaimer:

I do not support MQM, or any other political party for that matter.
I do not think taking up arms is a solution to anything.

9 comments:

Mighty said...

Having lived in Karachi for nearly two-and-a-half years, my experience with the MQM was pretty much hands on. As a journalist, I also had the oppurtunity of interacting with some their leaders. The impression that I take away from both these experiences highlights a complex, yet disturbing duality, one which is characteristic of nearly all political parties in contemporary Pakistan.
On one hand, we have the militant, oft violent side of the MQM. But the same can be said of the PPP (remember when BB died), the PML-N (they were the architects of lawyers' movement and the recent power riots), the BNP, PkMAP, JI etc.
But in the case of the MQM, this side manifests itself in a rather unforgiving manner. When they go into action, they don't discriminate between innocent bystanders and their intended targets. It's mayhem, the kind we saw on May 12. But if you were on the receiving end of something like the 1992 operation, you'd also have a fire of vengance burning inside you.

On the other side is their political prowess. As a political party, the MQM is one of the most (if not the most) well-disciplined and organised outfits in the country. At the helm of their public image campaign is the man who leads by example, City Nazim Mustafa Kamal. Also indicative of their roots in the people is the fact that sector in charges, who operate on a purely local level, rank higher than even party MNAs. For example (although I'm not 100% sure on this one), Deputy MQM Parliamentary Leader Haider Abbas Rizvi has been elected from the Gulistan-e-Jauhar/Gulshan-e-Iqbal constituency. But he is still answerable to his Jauhar sector in charge, making redressal of grievances a truly grass-roots affair for the party.

It's a Catch-22. Do you let a party with a fascist and even seperatist past rise so high in national politics, because they shed their purely 'Mohajir' mantle long ago when they decided to go national. I guess that's a question for wiser people to answer. Right now, all I know is that good, or bad, the MQM is here to stay.

Annie said...

Thanks for pointing that out; Every political party in our country has a violent side.

The issue here is that everyone keeps talking about them and Altaf Bhai and what criminals they are etc etc ...

But noone stops to think of, how all these Mahajirs became like this?..


its all too blakh... sad and pathetic..

Mighty said...

You have to admit thought... Altaf 'Bhai' is too funny... :D

Annie said...

I think he's kinda hot...

Pakistan's answer to Fuhrer of Germany.

Mighty said...

*cringe*

I'll try and forget you said that... you don't go comparing men of vision like Herr Furher (Adolf Bhai) to the blimp whose only claim to fame is the word "AAAUUUUUUUUUURRRRRRRRR!!!!"

Salman Latif said...

Well...that's a good analysis of the way MQM came out to be what it is now. However, the line of argument can be adopted on ALL social, political issues of modern day and every wrong done by every single person in any society can then be blamed on what? The circumstances that made the person or the group do that?
Since all stand even in that line of argument, let's just drop it and move to the present. How exactly are we to improve things NOW, in today's world.
Well...the first thing would be that all political gurus of Pakistan, particularly Punjab may simply let go of their long-bred hatred for MQM. What MQM would be required to do, in return, is to shun it's terror-politics in Karachi and invite other parties into the scene to end it's self-chosen isolation.
The wrongs done have been from both sides. Muhajir population was forced to bring out a residue of this sort after what they faced at Pakistan. However, the backlash from MQM has also been a terrible saga of terror in Karachi, which lost it's status of 'city of light' for many long years.
Let's just hope things melt down to a better future for all stakeholders here.

Mamma mia! Me a mamma? said...

Oh Annie, what an insightful and enlightening read. And I thought that only we, across the border, had to battle with inner-racisms, cultural conflicts, caste politics and a simmering rage, which has been pent up for so long that it's finally started to boil over.

Peace. This is what the world needs. This is what we all deserve.

Annie said...

@Mighty.... *blush.giggle.chuckle*

@Salman ...

I,m not justifying MQM's actions. I'm just trying to hint at a simple thing. Oppression breeds oppression. Look at wht is being done to the minorities in our country. For the love of Allah, the shit pakistani muslims pulled in shantinagr, back in 97...

its like a never ending thing. This needs to stop somewhere...

@M4...Thanks a lot. Its so frusrating to see this same pattern, being repeated , across the globe. Its ironic when it is happening in a country like ours which was made for this exactsame reason; a country based on the warm-fuzzy concept of the "islamic brotherhood".... "peace for all"

Peace...One day...

Nabeel said...

The situation was far worst in 1995 ... you literally gotta blame the corrupt politicians for misleading others. they do these because they have nothing else to do, no goals of future to look forward to.

People have forgotten tehzeeb, talim and tarbiyat not because they belong to a political party, but they've forgotten it as a human being.