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Tiger, tiger burning bright


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It may sound ludicrous, but the tiger metaphor is all-important for the Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N). The Sharif brothers often refer to themselves as ‘shers’ (tigers), the election symbol of the party is a tiger and more often that not, a rare white tiger belonging to a proud party worker is seen regularly at the party’s rallies.

On Wednesday, reports came in that the white tiger in question, which happens to be part of a rare species, suffocated in the heat of Lahore and died after being taken to the University of Veterinary and Animal Sciences Lahore.

In the meanwhile, Maryam Nawaz denied on Twitter that the tiger was dead, while a doctor contradicted others at the university and also said the tiger was well – but the poor animal is still nowhere to be seen and confusion remains.

Either way, the episode calls into question how the tiger was being used at the rally, in conditions that were nowhere near approximate to his natural habitat. According to WWF, white tigers are endangered and are extremely sensitive to heat and noise. A rally at the peak of summer in Punjab is likely to be noisy and suffocating.

Animal rights are generally completely neglected in Pakistan. The WWF is supporting a petition, filed by animal rights activist and actress Faryal Gauhar, before the Lahore High Court against the PML-N.

What do you think can be done to improve animal rights in Pakistan, a country where a large section of the human population even doesn’t have access to basic rights? Is it the PML-N’s fault that the animal in question suffered? What kind of laws can be passed to ensure this doesn't happen again? invites its readers to share their opinion and views. 

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Comments (48) Closed

G.A. May 09, 2013 08:04pm
Hopefully, in the New Pakistan, irresponsible, pompous and incompetent people like Maryam Nawaz would too be an endangered species. RIP Tiger. Sorry you had to come to Pakistan.
Noalur Rahim May 09, 2013 11:52pm
Where did the "owner" get this tiger from in the first place? Is it not illegal to have wild animals, specially endangered species as pets in Pakistan? .. And these people want to rule Pakistan? No wonder the situation of Pakistan is as is. If this time they do not vote for change, the people of that country deserve to be down trodden and kicked around.
ROSHAN SHARMA May 10, 2013 11:38am
Animal rights?? are you serious?
Arjumand. May 09, 2013 03:45pm
or delusion
Aysha Shafiq May 09, 2013 03:45pm
Poor animal. A society where human life has no value, it is no surprise that this tiger was chained and dragged in jalsas and might actually be sacrificed at the altar of reckless campaigning. The photos that were posted on social media show an all haggard and woebegone tiger. Even if it isn't dead yet, it is certainly dying! The fact that the tiger was maltreated reflects the general apathy towards animals that prevails in out society. I agree that PMLN should be sued for this act, but the issue should not be politicized.
fappy May 09, 2013 03:41pm
The question is was it necessary to bring that poor creature out of his natural habitat? what if PMLN were designated with a symbol of Elephant or a baboon? It's a pathetic state of affair, leaders falling down, some getting kidnapped others abusing animals what a circus.
Hasan May 09, 2013 03:35pm
A nation is judged by the way it treats it's animals and minorities. Sad to see we have failed miserably on both counts. However, admission of fault is the first step and at least we are mature enough to acknowledge our mistakes. I am cautiously optimistic of a better future for our nation.
Ali G May 11, 2013 09:01am
they do not deserve to become leaders...
Ali May 09, 2013 05:16pm
If this cruelty was done by any other party, Chief Justice would have taken suo moto notice by now, media would have big stories, so called civilian leaders like Asma Jehangir would have made hue and cry. Well done Noora Sharif you know how to buy people with your corrupt money
ayla khan May 10, 2013 04:29am
poor animal who died bcoz of "sharif brothers".
lina May 10, 2013 04:07am
how cruel is nawaz shariff can be made out from the way tiger was treated .......besdies the secret mesasge to the public was "u wud be the next"
Azi May 10, 2013 03:55am
No matter what laws are made ....there already exist a zillion laws about human rights ..... Implementation of the laws is the biggest problem compounded by corruption to break and get away from the LAWS.......A country where a Human dies every minute , wants to correct animal laws....Wake up Pakistan.
Aamir FArooq May 10, 2013 03:09am
When a human life is not any worth but a piece of paper known as vote, for these politicians, what would be an animal worth? On top of everything, what makes me ponders is what kind of kicks was Ms. Mariam Nawaz or Mrs.Mariam Safdar getting by taking the poor animal out to jalsas? What kind of EDUCATED people are we voting for? What are lives, even human, worth for them?
zia khan May 09, 2013 10:41pm
How long a tiger could pretend to be a lion and survive?
Sana May 09, 2013 10:14pm
No body in Pakistan can bring these ruling PML(N) people to justice for killing and mishandling of this poor creature. No one will ask M Nawaz why? it will be blamed to a poor worker like the bakery case.
Khan May 09, 2013 07:42pm
what can be done is to make an example of these sharifs and send them to prison for ten years, fine them 5 million dollars.
masooma May 09, 2013 12:15pm
well a tiger shouldnt suffer for their illusion of being lions
Agha Ata (USA) May 09, 2013 12:21pm
Passing laws wouldn't do an iota of help preventing animal abuse. People don't respect law. They just want to be ruled by their own emotions, retarded mindset to hate certain animals, and old beliefs coming from mullahs and uneducated parents not by law.
Mrs. Munim May 09, 2013 12:46pm
Yes the PML-N is at fault - it was their tiger, after all. Yesterday, I saw a car in Cantt with a cute stuffed toy tiger on top, decorated with tiny blue lights. It was an attention getter, for sure. Dont know why they need live animals when these are available.
Tao May 09, 2013 07:32pm
It does go hand in hand. Because many human rights are suffering does that mean discussion of animal rights should be dismissed when a clear case of animal abuse is brought to our attention? Showing sympathy to people and animals when they are suffering or being mistreated is a sign of humanity. "When a man has pity on all living creatures then only is he noble" Buddha
Adeel May 09, 2013 12:59pm
Poor Lion ! Where are you WWF ???????????
Khalil May 09, 2013 01:14pm
Does Pakistan have any Human rights, and you are talking about Animal rights?
EmMoosa May 09, 2013 02:27pm
Poor innocent tiger is killed by them who have no mercy for pakistanis. How they can even think a moment about that poor animal in the cage around thousands of people under extreme heat and without food and water. Are you giving your verdict in this election to these cruel leaders whom stomachs are full ? .
lkhan May 09, 2013 02:43pm
It is callous, cruel, and extreme bad taste to treat a wild animal as the poor white tiger. People who have no respect for animal life normally behave likewise towards human beings too. Seeing the tiger at the jalsas was extremely heart breaking, indeed would never give my vote to those who have such little respect for life. And to claim it is alive after it was declared dead by the animal veterinary hospital where it was taken in a coma - yet another PMLN lie the 40th or 50th????
ranganath May 10, 2013 05:01am
How can you just drag a tiger around? Does the law allow this in Pakistan?
Sayed Qazi M.D. May 10, 2013 05:10am
Speaks volume about the neanderthals abusing the poor animal.God forbid that these neanderthals or their arrow wielding cousins were to be foisted on Pakistan again.
Usman May 10, 2013 05:44am
Absolutely. Imagine tying a human being to a chain, and exposing him/her to loud music and noise for countless hours. To a tiger, it is absolute torture, they are used to roaming wild and free, and are easily irritable. There is a limit to the amount of stress any big cat can endure, that is why they are sterilized before transportation. Not that I expected any PMLN voters or supporters to point this out.
moina May 10, 2013 05:50am
An endangered species is chained and dragged around ! and there is no law! Shameful
momina,IBD May 10, 2013 07:30am
i am ashamed and aghast at the VANITY CIRCUS of PML(N)......did they really had to do this and if they had to,,,,,,,,since it was the PRIZED booty of some PROUD PML(N) worker.........was it not their responsibility to atleast keep it hydrated and cooled according to the her feline what have they earned out of all this CIRCUS.........bad publicity and rebukes...........immature as always our PML(N) brothers.
fareed May 10, 2013 09:19am
still dont know what is party symbol -lion or tiger??? very confusing.
Gul Khan May 10, 2013 09:20am
If so called SHARIF's , Sharif brothers cannnot take care of poor animal, can we expect these jokes to take care of this Nation. RG
Lahori May 10, 2013 09:28am
Poor animal died bcos of their cheap publicity stunt. MRG
Zainab May 10, 2013 09:52am
The responsible should be punished according to the law. Bringing animals should be benned in rallies in future. A case should also be lodged against Election Commision of Pakistan, besides PML N, for not stopping the candidates using animals especially rare ones for the election compaign. WWF is equally responsible for it; for they waited for the animal to die first so as to make an excuse for taking an action. Animals are also the creatures of God as human beings are. They should be taken care of. Candidates showing no sympathy to the animals will never show sympathy to their fellow human beings. in addition, God loves those who love His creatures.
Purush May 10, 2013 10:32am
What animal rights? In Pakistan there are no rights for humans, what to talk of animals !
Shrey May 10, 2013 11:10am
Politicians; Do what all u want to do with humans; but leave aside innocent animals!
Amin Kausar May 10, 2013 11:28am
Show offs and nothing more. Sharifs refer themselves as tigers. Real Tigers dont need bullet proof glasses to protect them, may circus tigers do...
Aijaz May 10, 2013 12:44pm
Tiger is dead and so the election results for the PML 'Only N' will be.
Irfan Butt May 10, 2013 01:02pm
Sorry for the poor tiger, but in his last symbolic gesture of death, this poor tiger displayed the ultimate disposal of the PML-N domination in Punjab. Farewell PML-N, its time to go to the grave on May 11th.
Amin May 10, 2013 01:19pm
Like india has human rights, go read your own newspapers
Usman Ahmad May 10, 2013 01:21pm
What animal rights with PML-N!Even peoples do not have rights under their Government.NO electricity,no gas and yet SHREEFS blame on the others.Famous saying" If you can not take the heat,get out of the kitchen."Let some one else do the job. NOw they are trying to pave the way for their youngsters. Sham
jehanzaib May 10, 2013 01:36pm
Even the innocent creature is alive, still the concern authorities should look into the matter... this is yet another display of how much arrogant and cruel our society is.
Xulf May 10, 2013 01:48pm
Of course it was an abuse! What kind of silly question was that? A wild beast was chained and shackled and was used as an election prop, goes to show the shallowness of Sharifs and their utter disregards for living things..
Azhar Hussan May 10, 2013 02:52pm
Come on guys these Nawaz brothers don't care how many human lives are lost on their way to the Prime Ministers House, who cares about the Tiger. Since when has the Tiger become a Sher, Sher is a Lion always been like that. Whether he is alive or not, these jokers probably told the owner to shut up till the end of the polling.
Azhar Hussan May 10, 2013 02:53pm
My suggestion to the Indian posters, to look in the mirror before you post anything here.
Shirjeel Humayun May 10, 2013 03:02pm
It's quite obvious that when PML-N has not been able to take care of an animal, how it would take care of the people of Pakistan. Please vote for PTI..
AHA May 10, 2013 03:48pm
The PML leadership does not even know that the poor creature was a tiger and not a lion. They already are running a province- our biggest one. And they want to run the whole country. Amazing!
Jack Iyer May 10, 2013 07:11pm
Well as you mentioned that in Pakistan; most of the humans do not have basic rights. In order to think about human or animal rights, you have to be an human and in order to do any thing about it you need to have powers to do something about it. Now what do you expect from animals like Nawaz, Zardari and many more powerful people. An animal in jungle only cares about himself and his claim. he will eat everyone else. That is what we are and will not change. Unless we educate, educate and educate. Thank about it. Jack
Ilyas Kashmiri May 11, 2013 01:34am
LOL! amazing.. what a insightful comment bro. Right on....