Friday, August 28, 2009

Account # 420

Planning to major in marketing as I just can't stand numbers didn't made an impact on those who recruited me for internship as they placed me in a bank. However, by the end of my first week I have realised that accounting is not that boring as it seems in the four walls of the classroom.

However, this post has nothing to do with any further details of my love-hate relationship with the subject. It is about the extent to which people are still connected to the age old hysteria of superstition.

A man in his late 40, decently dressed up came up to the desk next to where I, along with another internee was totalling some amounts & my calculator was giving me a hell of a time. Suddenly our ears picked up the sound of our next seat neighbor getting all charged up for getting the operational code as 420 for his new account. And he wanted it immediately changed. As this was not possible according to the system protocol he decided to close the account (whose checkbook had not yet arrived) & open another account so that he can get rid of that number.

Apart from the momentary laugh that we all enjoyed due to that customer's reaction to a mere number it also made me think that what difference does education make in such type of matters? The gentlemen was an educated person & it made no difference to him. What's lacking in our system (& I mean apart from the ratafication system which makes the foundation of our educational boards).

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Things that matter

"Our lives begin to end the day we become silent about things that matter".

Martin Luther King, Jr.

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

We Shall Live To See !

We shall live to see,
So it is written,
We shall live to see,
The day that’s been promised,
The day that’s been ordained;
The day when mountains of oppression,
Will blow up like wisps of cotton;
When the earth will dance
Beneath the feet of once enslaved;
And heavens will shake with thunder
Over the heads of tyrants;
And the idols in the House of God
Will be thrown out;
We the rejects of the earth,
Will be raised to a place of honour.
All crowns’ll be tossed in the air
All throwns’ll be smashed.
And God’s word will prevail,
He who is both present and absent
He who is beheld and is the beholder.
And truth shall ring in every ear,
Truth which is you and I,
We, the people will rule the earth
Which means you,which means I

Faiz Ahmed Faiz
January 1979

Friday, August 14, 2009

Independance Day Greetings

This was posted on facebook. Thought it was worth sharing.


Having witnessed intense love for itself, the present ignorance is not acceptable. This widespread attitude is confusing & humiliating. In every love story the gorgeous beauty wants to be pampered & admired; if this demand goes unheard the lover suffers the consequences.

Now a days we all are cursing our beauty in one way or the other. For once, let’s change our lenses & look at the situation from the Pakistan’s perspective. Surviving the dark times on the energy imparted by the glorious memories, the country misses its true lovers. What an ideal love story it had experienced. Her admirers were ready to go to any length to get her & after the happy union every possible measure was adopted to protect it. In return our soil stayed loyal in all its capacity.

Fast forwarding the story lets look at the present scenario. 60 percent of the nationals’ aren’t really concerned what happens to this country. Out of the rest who claim to be all conscious people are only concerned to the level to which they are affected, beyond that who cares. How many of us are practically active about the situation in Bajur & other similar areas? None of us; we don’t care if a part of us is being striped off us. It’s because our intensity of love is vanishing day by day. Most of us are waiting for or struggling for an opportunity to get out of here because this land no more fulfills our desires. This implies to both the so called leaders & the citizens (of all classes). No one believes in the following statement of a leader of this nation:

“Courage is in our blood, we are the children of a rich heritage. We shall succeed”.

Moving on the path that we are currently following how can we even think that this soil should reward us with more and more resources to exploit? Haven’t we been fed enough? If you close your eyes & skim through your attitude’s history I believe that someone who has the slightest concisions won’t be able meet his/her own eyes in the mirror. We have been getting more than we deserve & still our complain cell sees no limits. There are countries whose deprivation level exceeds our wildest imagination & yet they are loyal to their countries & serve it in the best of their abilities. And what do we do? We are ever ready to serve other countries but when it comes to our own land we want to be served like kings. If I am exaggerating, would anyone like to explain that why people belonging to upper middle class of Pakistan are found happily working at petrol pumps in the western countries?

It’s never too late to start afresh and change the direction of our destiny. At the moment our gorgeous beauty is demanding that its lovers; Believe where others doubt; Work where others refuse; Save where others waste & Stay where others quit. We don’t have to become philosophers who only interpret the world in different ways instead we need to become agents of change which is the need of the hour. Depending on our rulers is not the right decision because none of them has learned to become our leaders & there is an immense difference between a ruler & a leader. The following quote of George Bernand Shaw in my view point clarifies this difference:

“There are those who look at things the way they are, and ask why? I dream of things that never were & ask why not?”

Criticizing others won’t bring us solutions. And why criticize others when deep down we know that one of the reasons that we don’t take an active part in this situation is to avoid others criticism. This is a human instinct which leads us away from our proud destination of success. There are two successful ways of living. One is that you take someone as your guide & follow in his/her footsteps or you yourself become the guide for others & lead the way. As we quite clearly know that for us the first option is almost non-existent hence we all need to be pro-active & take up the second, more difficult path of life. This is the only way we can survive, rekindle our love for Pakistan & prove that, courage is in our blood, we are the children of a rich heritage & we shall succeed.

P.S: Written 4 my University mag. (Folio)

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

14th Aug.


"The land of pure" where each day the sun rises with a new hope, with an enduring majesty as the rays of light flushing down towards the snow caped peaks of Himalaya's & Nanga parbat. A land where love finds a meaning in the heart warming hospitality of people.

A land where history & ancient civilization mystifies one's heart.

A land where spiritualism unveils its mystery at the shrines of sufi saints.

This will be the front of Islam.

This is the land I belong to,

This is the land I will die for &

This is the land that defines my identity.

As our Independence Day is on its way so the forwarded sms are all so full of optimism. Out of all those messages this one really touched me.

If we come to think of it, this completely defines our origin as a nation & what most of us believe in at bottom of our hearts. However, the reality checks give us a far different picture which cannot be AND should not be overlooked. But how to change this picture???

What most of us do is blame; something that our government is an expert. There are those who have lost hope & are leaving. Those who are left behind aren't interested in changing things around them & are by now I guess completed tuned to just adjust with the way things are.

If we desire to see a change, we better start taking the initial steps now because this mess cannot be cleared is a short span of time.

God Bless Pakistan.

Thursday, August 6, 2009

All in the HEART

"Everybody can be great, because everybody can serve...You don't have to have a college degree to serve...You don't have to make your subject and verb agree to serve...You only need a heart full of grace, a soul generated by love, and you can be that servant..."

Martin Luther King Jr.

Saturday, August 1, 2009

Taxi to the Dark Side

A documentary film which won the 2007 Academy Award for Documentary Features. It focuses on the murder in custody of an Afghan taxi driver by American soldiers. This feature however, has nothing to do with that film or the concept used in its theme. We have our very own “Taxi to the Dark Side”. A taxi that we have ridden to the dark side even when the rest of the world was celebrating financial prosperity. Taxi of youth unemployment. As with everything else that happens here for this case too we are always looking for a scapegoat instead of rectifying the fault.

The root cause is the lack of proper education. Our educational system & content is not up to the International standards. More than half of the 54 percent population which we mark as the literate class is only capable of writing their own name leaving only around 10 percent people who are literate in the real sense. With the day night progress in the IT sector, products & services are delivered in a very much techno oriented manner. More than 70 percent of our population is not even remotely aware of these improvements.

Other contributing factors point the finger at the government. If you are part of so & so’s family tree or know so & so via so & so, you have nothing to worry about unemployment. However, those of us who reject this formula because a) they don’t know anyone & b) they are those lame ones who still believe in merit & justice, are the ones who are going to be interested in this article(as they have nothing else to do). Our former President in one of this interviews stated that we should not worry about the brain drain. As our country does not has enough resources we should let are people go & when the country will be back in gear these people will return to the land of pure. Unfortunately, the mother land never came back in her gear & at the present the chances don’t seem that bright. What Mr. Musharaf overlooked, was the burden this brain drain caused. These doctors, engineers, IT people, MBAs etcetra are educated here, get their training here but the fruit is enjoyed by others. What’s left for Pakistan is the leftover, those who were rejected or didn’t have the right resources.

While interviewing some of the locals we got to know that the majority stops their education after intermediate level only few continue with their bachelors. And they leave their jobs & prefer opening their own shops of grocery, drive rickshaw etc because their jobs don’t pay them more more than the minimal wage. In our view point all these young people should be taught the meaning of the quote “Don’t expect until & unless you deserve”. Though if you look at the circumstances its agreed that most of the blame resides on the government but unfortunately our generation X are no angels. They have diverted their energies in the wrong direction.

Exceptions do exist. Some of these have turned the odds in their favor & showed the world Some of the best examples of enterpernurship. One of these examples is Muhammad Azfar Ahsan (CEO of Nutshell Forum; country’s leading conference management and training resource organization, he had organized more than two hundred national and international conferences, seminars, training workshops and group discussions in Pakistan, Sri Lanka, Dubai and Bahrain). People like these should be inspiration enough for the rest of us to follow.

Margaret Mead said: “Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed it is the only thing that ever has”.

Therefor, its high time that we stop crying about what the majority does & change the south Asian pace with which things happen in our part of the world.