August 12, 2010

Zardari's Back

Rumor has it that the President has finally deemed it worth his time to go and visit some of the flood hit areas. Apparently, he visited Sukkur to take stock of the situation and the efforts being made to stop the city, situated on the bank of the mighty Indus, from flooding. What difference will his trip make remains to be seen. However, if he thought his photo-op session in Sukkur, similar to Nawaz Sharif's efforts in Nowshera and Mithankot, will reverse the new trend of Zardari-bashing, he's in for a surprise. Our animated media rarely ever leaves a punching bag alone, and in Zardari's case, personal vendetta has been added to the list of prejudices.

The Foreign Office on the other hand is churning out some cheeky statements in this hour of crisis. For example, Abdul Basit, the spokesperson for the Foreign Ministry has stated that the international community needs to "do more" in this trying and turbulent period for Pakistan. Very wisely stated on the part of our Foreign Ministry, I must acknowledge. Perhaps a little more show of guts will change the whole world's perception of Pakistan being little more than a punch bag. As usual, the crisis is deepening by the day in Pakistan. The floods that were thought to be over are apparently not quite over yet. Indus is once again in super flood and it is surging on downstream threatening to inundate more districts of Punjab and Sindh. And as usual, there appears to be no concerted or coordinated effort on the part of the government to contain the damage. Of course that can be attributed to the fact that the government has already been overwhelmed by the scale of the disaster and it has been stretched thin. 

According to a Parliamentarian from the ruling PPP, "...the government cannot be in all places at all times..."

Well sir if it can't be in all places at all times, why is it called a government then? Of course the specter of Musharraf's LG system will be haunting the current ruling coalition. It is no hidden fact that greater autonomy in the lower cadres would have helped mitigate some damage. But then, how could the "democratic" forces of this country tolerate the "bad" system of local governments imposed by a dubious dictator? Sometimes I am forced to question whether our politicians even think at all.

The youth of this country has truly impressed. Whereas the old legions of help brigades continue with their slumber, the youth have gone into overdrive. And not just the self glorifying idiots who post TV links on their Facebook walls to tell the world they helped, but the bigger group of generous, Pakistan loving patriots who are refusing to sit still while their countrymen need them. There is Pehla Qadam from Karachi, Shajar-e-Ilm and DVP from Islamabad. But then there are the individuals who are not aligned to any youth organization but are still spending sleepless nights trying to ensure that those who cannot sleep at night, get their share's worth of rest. My class fellows Noor Shahid, and Ahsan Kureshi for example. These are the remarkable men of valor and merit who show us why we're all proud Pakistanis.

Meanwhile if you feel at any point that you or anyone you know could help in anyway, please let us know. We know excellent people who will ensure that your aid gets to the right people. Please do your bit in helping your countrymen in this hour of need. Anything at all that you can contribute is welcome. Use the contact tab to send us your email and phone number and we will get in touch with you. We are primarily collaborating with Shajar-e-Ilm, a youth based Non-Profit Initiative that is personally volunteering in the flood hit regions. You can contact them at and Please remember that even the tiniest donation on your part will help make a difference.