Bleeding Green

I thought I was a true Pakistani but no, I don’t bleed green. I know this for a fact. I checked it the other day (accidentally*).

I have a feeling most of us don’t. The people who actually sacrificed their lives, literally and figuratively, 65 years ago were the only ones who bled green. We can never understand it today – or ever. What it meant, what it took.

Because we were born with this independence, this freedom, we don’t care about it. We have put it on the topmost shelf for safety like we would a precious and delicate decoration piece. It sits there year after year, gathering dust till a day like 14th August arrives. Then we take it out, polish it and admire it for a few moments before putting it back.

And it once again sits there in its esteemed position, shining only outwardly for a while before being forgotten once again.

I have often wondered: why does a ‘patriotic’ statement from anyone sound hollow these days? In my opinion, the answer lies in the fact that we ourselves don’t believe in it. And while we struggle to paint a balanced picture, a picture of both the good and the bad of this beloved nation of ours, we still find it hard to believe in the good. And for the bad, we already believe in it too much.

The change is evident in the very fact of ‘celebration’. My own personal experience: I didn’t wear green clothes this time; nor sported any badge. Jhandian have long become extinct as far as I am concerned. No Facebook status; no green display or cover picture. We only put a flag on our roof on the day in question.

And, once outside, I looked to my right and then to my left. Didn’t even see the tiniest trace of a green-and-white flutter.

This is how we celebrate 65 years, the zeal reserved for our social media profile, our blog post and watching TVCs like Ufone’s.

[*If you’re reading this SaaFaa, yes, I think I should give some serious thought to marrying a doctor :D]




Independence Day?

Another 14th August is around the corner. Pakistan turns sixty-four years old.

Celebrations? Sure.

Five killed in Sindh. Vehicles set on fire on in Karachi. One person burned alive. Sarfraz Shah’s ‘murderer’ sentenced.

Torrential rains, with threat of flooding in lower Punjab and Sindh, killing many in latter province.

Some more robberies. A bomb hoax and a kidnapping. Another blast. Attack on a military cantonment. A few more target killings. Someone protests over something.

These are just some of the news in today’s papers from all over the country. A dismal state indeed.

This is independence and freedom?

Nope! It’s the ‘elites’ having a life-long ball at the expense of everyone else. It’s ‘insurgents’ killing people they consider unfit. It’s terrorists making people afraid of their own shadows. It’s government officials filling up their own private coffers. All of these people are ‘independent’ to do as they wish.

But we really don’t need another article highlighting all this. The media has this area covered, I would say. Complaining and blaming will not take us anywhere. If it had to, it would already have done so.

What we need is a revolution.

Sadly, we have already been pumped full of ‘anesthesia’ for it to take a mere suicide or an act of police brutality for us to come out of the rocks we have been living under. Such statements always bring a sarcastic reaction from all of us. Steeped in our apathy and sarcasm and criticism, we tend to think about giving up. And we just go on…

But I am not giving up. I am not going to give up.

It is just a matter of time. And a matter of finding the right catalyst.

Tomorrow morning, I am still proudly going to wear my green jora and the badge sporting my flag and watch all the special transmissions on TV and hope to God that nothing untoward occurs and pray for Pakistan to get well soon.

This might all I be able to do right now but this is how I show all those people who try to convince us that all this is proof that Pakistan is a failed state and should not have been ‘made’ and blah blah blah. It might not be much but it’s way more than sitting at home and complaining.

I’m not giving up. You’re welcome to join the bandwagon.

Pakistan Zindabad!