Is Pakistan Safe?

Sep 26, 2013 by     No Comments    Posted under: Expressions, General, Opinions

As much as I want to deny it, the truth is that even though my country is a result of the continuous hardships and zealous efforts of my ancestors, it is now unsafe for living.

For a majority of Pakistanis there is no assurance of safe guarding their integrity, respect, possessions and frankly, their lives. The ‘Pakistan Zindabad’ chants that were once heard with such overflowing patriotism have now lost their fervor. The feelings of the so-called pakistaniat that were once ardent amongst the populace at large now seem to be fading away.

The notion of brotherhood that prevailed amongst us has long been lost. One’s nation is his home, his abode, his sanctuary. I cannot help but feel that the times have past when just such an analogy was used to describe my beloved Pakistan.

There is no guarantee today that a worshipper who goes to a mosque will return home safe, there is no assurance that someone who raises his voice against the corrupt purveyors of justice will not be brutally beaten and put behind bars, and there is certainly no undertaking that a woman who sets out to work will return home without being harassed.

However, despite the ills that I am forced to witness everyday, I cannot help but feel that somehow, all will be set to rights.

Yet, in spite of the optimism that resides within my heart, I refuse to be blindfolded by the blatant lies of my leaders and I refuse to dream without just action.

The increased number of suicide bombings, the inhumane love of brutality that has arisen in most of society, our government’s reluctance in punishing culprits, the trumped up charges of blasphemy and the prevailing religious fundamentalism, the abduction and sexual harassment of women that has integrated into our society due to lack of criminal accountability, along with the conflagrating street crimes where every day so many people bid farewell to their loved ones, and perhaps the lives of innocent people of Shazaib Khan and the tragic truce that his family undertook with his perpetrators , is indeed a shameful depiction of the anarchy, chaos, corruption and evil that prevails in Pakistan today.

Yet, even though the media and the rest of society refuse to harp about anything but the bad, I cannot help but realize the good too. For my country is filled to the brim with minerals, and beautiful sprawling land that is one of the world’s bounties. I remember the hospitality that defines us as a people, and the unity that binds us together during times of strife (such as the Salalah incident and the our annual earthquakes). Our philanthropic projects are some of the biggest in the world, and we have a culture and heritage as diverse as the many colourful languages that are spoken across Pakistan.

Then why is it that we have forgotten the beauty that defines our country – and concentrate solely on the thorns that are spread across its rose tipped stems?

The realist in me believes that Pakistan is unsafe for living, yet another part of me also believes that there is hope. Pakistan can become the state we all want to live in. However, this calls for major struggle and painful honesty. It calls for responsibility. It calls for patriotism. The question is – are we willing to truly stand up for our country?

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