Our children line up to school, our adults haphazardly queue up at banks – what happened to the teachings of childhood?
Wednesday, April 14, 2010
I was lucky enough to study at one of the most prestigious institutions of Pakistan. I remember vividly how we used to walk to the assembly in groups and communities. Recitation of the Koran used to take place and we used to on line up in a long queue to move towards the educational edifice after the daily assemblies. While studying in Canada, I saw a very similar pattern among schoolchildren. In fact everything was in perfect queue. Cars were being driven in straight lines and buildings were actually at the same distance near the foot paths. Taking out the human equation, everything that actually was made of brick and mortar had symmetry to it.
Any nation that actually has perfect symmetry of processes, people and infrastructure has finally made Babylon. The mesmerizing ingredient here is how can a complete community of people automatically forget what they have been taught for 15 years of their life? How can schoolchildren who have known nothing more than to stand in line for their entire academic careers turn out to become our vagabonds of society? The same people who cut lines and have haphazard patterns be the same people who once were in lines as children and students? Either the school system is wrong or that the home system is flawed. Anything that is imbedded with such brutal force cannot be forgotten once someone leaves the college gates. This is insanity. This is Pakistan.
Honestly speaking, I once lived in one of the most beautiful parts of New York City. In any civilized and decent community of people you would see bankers, lawyers, engineers, and businessman living in the serene environments. But you will not see the meter readers, electricians, milkmen, and the overall regular government officers who would not be able to buy such land and homes in the regular government salaries residing in the best to do places of America. This is the complete opposite in Pakistan. I live in one of the most posh areas of Lahore and one would contemplate that a similar pattern of civilized and ethically responsible people would reside. As I look around my community, I see people who worked as clerks in WAPDA and Sui Gas built huge homes. I have majors who have retired from the army who have magnificent homes. Isn't it intriguing that people if you actually look at their salary infrastructure would not ever be able to build even a small unit for themselves reside as kings as if they owned the place and their ethics completely forgotten? It is impossible for majors, colonels, grade 18 officers, grade 19 and even grade 20 DMG officers to purchase homes worth millions of rupees. According to the salary slips they earn no more than Rs. 60,000 which they can hardly have ends meet.
Let’s talk about my three neighbors. The first one is actually a customs inspector. He actually owns four homes and two plazas in the vicinity. My next-door neighbor was a milkmen who was able to get extensive money after his lands became a part of the Defense Housing Authority. When you have people who are uneducated and morally corrupt live next door what to expect from society and the benefits of a community? A society that is being built for conniving thieves and thugs. Imagine the morality and insanity I live with knowing that the man next door has the same lifestyle as myself whereas I have two Canadian degrees and he works as a customs inspector at the airport. My salary is 0.4 million per month on the record of a private company and his salary is Rs. 25,000 per month. Yet, no different life styles. Ironic? This is Pakistan.
Somewhere something beautiful has slipped into the crack. The children who were once fooled by their teachers to be in lines grew up to be more corrupt and fabricate lies. I am still in search of the root cause. Can anyone explain to me why is a nation so corrupt that our political leaders are not only liars but they have lied about their education degrees and bank balances? The ex-prime minister of this country claims that he has paid only one lakh rupees in taxes whereas his Mercedes millions of rupees? This is a nation where the governor is opening known for drinking Liquor in an Islamic country? This is a country where the Chief Justice of Pakistan is able to close down streets as he passes. And the ambulances have patients awaiting the opening of the roads as patients die in ambulances? This is a country where half of its years have been dictated by military rulers. We have tried all the types and forms of governance. I've come to realize it's not the type of government that should run Pakistan that is the question. It's the type of people that have come and looted us. I've not met one man and one soul who has been morally decent with his job. The entire bureaucracy of Islamabad is on whiskey. If you do not believe it, go to any government office and try to get to work done. It would not be possible without wine, women or bribery. What happened to the lessons of the caliphs we had learnt as children? The hadith we had been so actively pursuing as children? Anyone with answers?