NWFP under a cloud!

News emanating from Peshawar are that three suspected millitants were killed by a bomb that went off while the millitants supposedly were preparing to cause some destruction, early this morning. Before the incident, a powerufl bomb went off blowing a nearby CD shop besides damaging a few more.
News like such have almost beocme a routine in or around the provicial capital of NWFP courtesy the escalating fight between suspected millitants and the Pak Army in almost every corner of the frontier. The erstwhile peaceful city of Peshawar is feeling the brunt of the millitray operations launched to wipe out millitancy in South Waziristan and Swat. Its not long when a sucide bomber took the lives of almost 18 people along with his own when he blew himself amid a Muharram procession. The incident was grave enough to cast a spell of grief over the people of Peshawar for some days to come. Lately I’ve heard about some rockets being fired into Hayatabad, a modern residential area of the city which is not far away from Darra Adam Khel, a rather new operational ground to fight the millitants.
Discussing the legitimacy of using force to achieve the required results on part of the Pakistan Army or millitants for that matter, is another issue altogether but what I want to express here is my deep concern for the masses which are affected by the ongoing war in more than one way.
The operation in Swat, for instance has been devastating for the people of the valley once known as the Switzerland of Pakistan. The paradize on earth is burning in the hell fire causing to suffer thousands of innocent people inhabiting the area. Indescriminate firings and bombings from both the sides have taken hundreds of innocent lives. How can I forget the story of a moliv sahib, who happens to be a prayer leader in a mosque in our surroundings. Hailing from Khwaza Khela, a locality severly hit by the operation the moliv sahib left his home for Mardan and somewhere near the bus stand in Mingora he was ordered to stop by one of the Pak Army jawans, for every bearded man now a days in Swat is regarded to be a terrorist. He was searched, insulted, abused and warned not to be seen wandering over there again. Shortly after the incident another man was shot dead who didn’t respond to the army men’s shouts of stoppage and who was later recognized by the locals as an insane.
Mardan, the second largest populous city of the NWFP is also showing affects of the war on millitancy in Swat. The city is filled to the full by the migrating sufferers from Swat besides it is witnessing sporadic incidents of millitancy here and there. The PRC market popular for its video CD shops adjacent to the Army training center has twice been blown by the suspected millitants. A cable operating office was bombed on the day of Eid ul Adha when we heard those resounding explosions.
Similarly Kohat, Dera Ismael Khan and Karak are enveloped by gloom and disaster.
People residing the ‘under operation’ areas are fleeing to the settled areas, resultantly settled areas are feeling the heat too. The flames of war, it seems are englufing whole of the frontier. Negotiations ought to be contemplated before it beocmes too late. Peace is the need of the moment otherwise it will become impossible, a national integration.

Ode to the Spring

Its a norm centuries old,
That a winter icy cold,
Gives birth to the fall,
To depress we people all.

With a mood of redemption,
And a freshly complexion,
You come along to bring,
Merry, glee; dear spring.

In the currents of the breeze,
And the waves of the seas,
Your songs can be heard,
Like singing of a bird.

In the trees and the meadows,
Can be found your shadows,
Of the darkish color green,
With a twinking little sheen.

In a clear sky blue,
On the glistening glossy dew,
On the petal of a rose,
You appear in a pose.

Every kite in the sky,
Like birds when they fly,
Celebrate your trip,
When they curve, when they dip.

Our land that is saddened,
When you come will be gladended,
You are waited for, indeed,
Come along with a speed!

 

Testing times … shhh! don’t disclose it!

I’m not supposed to write this entry. Do you know why? shhh! Do listen to my whispers and don’t disclose it to my prospective employers. Yes, What I’m gonna write might not go down well on the authorities at PBC and if disclosed, they might think of rejecting my three hours long toil of writing that test which I just gave aiming at acheiving a position of a producer over there. Yet, I can’t swallow those scenes of mismanagement and chaos that I witnessed at the spot of the written test.

A legion of around 400 aspirants were invited for some 13 vacant posts with the invitation letters mentioning the test starting time to be exact 09:30. It was a long wait till 10:40 when finally the arrangements were completed for the test to be started. The seating arrangement was such that one could view the contents on the page of the other aspirant even without bothering to turn his eyes. No order prevailed and every second participant either asked questions or cheated from the other ones which reminded me of our school days when our examination hall would echo every now and then with the whispering queries of students from each other untill silenced by those sleepy teachers who would walk around the aisles after brief intervals.

It was a descriptive test and we were asked to elaborate in detail over the Media freedom in Pakistan besides commenting on what was the role of radio in the modern era when there is this increasing emphasis on Television and internet etc. There were a few general knowledge quesitons as well. Fortunately it went right for this blogger who tried his best to give it a proper shot.

There was no dearth of the supporters who mostly comprised of the employees of the particular organisation making their presence felt by encouraging their near and dear participants with moral and well as material support during the test, not to mention the background help that has become a pre-requisite for finding a job especially in the governmental sector in Pakistan. Look at my craze that I tried without that particular pre-requisite even knowing doing this would be an exercise in futility. I couldn’t found one to be honest.

Having written all this, I’m still hopeful to earn an interview call should they check those bundles of papers which in itself would be a gigantic task thanx to that long list of short listed candidates. At the same time I’m requesting the one or two of you who’ve stumbled on my blog, to keep it to yourselves otherwise my prospects of getting that job will be zero.

 

Two Poems By Rehman Baba…

It was Raza Rumi who motivated me to try and translate a few poems of the celebrated pushto sufi poet Rehman baba which I did. The poems were published first by Pak Tea House and to my utmost pleasure, then by The Pakistaniat as well. Below here are the poems, the originals in pushto of which I will be posting in a few days time, InshaAllah.

I

Why I’m not dying
Why I’m not dying,
Of the sorrow of separation,
Why I’m not dying,
Of this mourning intense.
Why I’m not dying,
Of the cruelty of this age,
Which snatches a lover from the lover.
Why I’m not dying
Of witnessing these mornings,
Which laugh at my sobs every rising day.
Why I’m not dying
Without my lover,
For it is a death, not to stare in the lover’s eyes.
Why I’m not dying,
To see these unfaithful drops of dew,
That leave the flower upon seeing a slight warmth.
Why I’m not dying,
Of this deadly miserable life,
That I’m carrying with myself,
O’Rehman from so long.

II

Such have your sorrows overpowered me,
That I’ve lost every place in and out.

My sobs have rendered people restless,
Like fire of a burning dry wood engulfing the moistured.

In your pain, I’m weeping like a candle,
But you are smiling at me like a bright morn.

My heart’s hanging in your path,
Like your black hair dangling in front of your face.

Tis’ a norm for all the sorrows to be crushed under your feet,
When you are burdened with that single grief.

They come towards you, leaving me behind,
All those who advisingly forbade me from your path.

Such is the effect of yours over the face of Rehman,
Like a flame of fire over a thinly dry stalk.

Meri Baad-e-Saba III

Aay baad-e-saba!
chal chorh bhi day,
Is samt na aa,
Is khana-e-weeran say tum ko,
Ab kya lena,
Jab phool yahan par khiltay thay,
Jab gulshan bhi aabad raha,
Guzran tera is basti say jab chaha tha,
Tum door rahi,
Bay waqt magar ab aayee ho,
Bekaar hay ab tera phirna,
Is basti may,
Phoolon ka nahi ab nam-o-nishan,
Gulshan kab ka weeran hua,
Yeh basti hay sehra sehra,
Ab lot bhi ja,
Aay bad-e-saba,
Is samt na aa.

Translation

O’ the morn’s breeze!
You ought to cease,
Coming here.
You’ve nothing to do,
With this corner; forsaken.
When flowers here,
Used to bloom,
And the garden was thriving,
When there was a longing for you,
To pass over here,
You stayed away,
To return in these times,
Unfavorable.
It is but useless for you,
To wander in these alleys,
Flowers don’t exist anymore,
And the garden’s withered,
Since long.
This town’s like a desert,
Just go back!
O’ the morn’s breeze!
You ought to cease,
Coming here.

A bomb scare!

There has been a bomb scare at my work place right since morning. Everyone ‘s out in the lawn and the bomb disposal squad is busy investigating the whole area. I’ve just come back to my seat after shivering out there in the chill for a major chunk of an hour. The rumor was generated by a telephone call to our communication department this morning indicating of a possible bomb blast but which it seems is evaporating in the thick air as most of the areas have been declared safe of a any explosives.

The general sense of fear apart, it has been fun to gather and enjoy a cup of tea with some of the intimate collegues outside in a ‘chappar’ hotel.
The overall atmosphere in the country is that of uncertainity and fear. One can’t be sure of any day passing safely without bringing a scare or two for the security situation of the country. That is, perhapes the reason for one to be affected by rumors like the one I’ve mentioned above and which in a stable national envoirnment could be brushed aside swiftly.

Allah khair hi karay!

How could we bid farewell to thee!

It would have been nice if one bade farewell to the departed year of 2007 on a high note especially taken into consideration its tumultous nature in reference to Pakistan’s internal situation. But it couldn’t happen to be,  given the tragedies we witnessed during its departing days. We ended up on the lowest ebb when 2007 finally melted into history. The lines below just convey the same;

 

You slipped into oblivion with a haste,

Its not long since you arrived with a face,

Fresh enough; for us goodness to anticipate,

Knowing not, we’ll be lost in your haze.

Yours were a bag full of the events uncertain,

Throwing one after the other,showing your intentions,

Of throwing us into a void of total destruction,

Which you nearly did with a vicious conviction.

How could we bid a farewell to thee!

For year like yours never did we see!

Knowing you departed, relieved are we!

Hoping for the new one, a happier to be!