Thirty funerals and an Eid

Updated Aug 09, 2013 08:51pm

Today is Eid, and I am dreading the day.

For me it is a day that is dead, empty of meaning, and bereft of joy.

Yesterday, 30 persons were killed in a funeral procession in Quetta. Thirty funerals will take place on Eid day.

Today, people will head to the mosques in their finest clothes. Some of them will come back in shrouds with their heads blown off, limbs severed, and their finest apparels ripped and soaked in blood. Even during the two World Wars, the two sides would hold fire on Christmas Day, but not us good Muslims; when we are on a jihad, we never hold fire.

Under threat of ostracism, I, too, will be forced to go to the mosque and listen to an ignorant man preaching either hatred or inanities. Last year, he ranted against having paintings and photographs hung on walls in the houses. This year, my music collection may be the target of his wrath.

Later, the bell will ring every five minutes. People I don’t know, half know, quarter know, don’t want to know will be turning up. The perfunctory hugging to the beat of one-two-three will be followed by a lifeless handshake and murmured words of felicitation. Some cash will be disbursed to a majority of the visitors.

The day highlights the destruction of all that was good in our country and our faith. How can I celebrate on such a day?

But it was not always like this.

Most of the Eid days during the years of my childhood make for some of my finest memories. We lived in Quetta in the Hazara Shia section of the town. My family is Sunni but the mosque nearest to our house was an Imam Bargah. We could hardly sleep the night before, as the anticipation of Eid day would keep us tossing, turning and dreaming. Getting up with an alacrity that was never there when we had to go to school, we would bathe, put on our new clothes, socks and shoes.

A touch of attar from tiny bottles would complete the preparations for this joyous day, and with the janimaz in hand the whole family would head out for the prayers. The maulana would ask us to join him in asking God for forgiveness, for succour to the suffering, marriage of the unmarried, and of course the liberation of Kashmir. The last mentioned was the only concession made to politics.

Returning home from the prayers we would find our mother and sisters looking beautiful in their new dresses. Hugs would follow: warm, genuine, life giving ones. Relatives would arrive with their children. Their parents lovingly giving us Eidi; small amounts, but enough to trigger complex mathematical calculation on how many of this or that could be bought from the money in hand. Would it be three lollipops, one plastic puzzle and a kaleidoscope? Or, three kites, a kaleidoscope, and a flute? We would race to the little shop down the road and get even more confused when confronted with the dazzling array of colourful treasures on display. The money was small but the happiness immense, untainted by any hint of sadness or tragedy.

My family and I have no new clothes, socks and shoes for today. We can buy a dozen of each if we wish. We have not even cooked any “savaiyaan”. No, we are not of the wahabi ilk, but our spirits are crushed and our are hearts are heavy. No amount of bathing, fresh new clothes and perfume can cleanse us of the invisible stains of shame that we carry on us.

It may be Eid but it is not the same Eid. It may be called Pakistan but it is not Pakistan.

Eid Mubarak to you all. Hope you and your family are still alive tomorrow.


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Vaqar Ahmed is an engineer turned part-time journalist who likes to hang out at unfashionable places like shrines, railway stations and bus stops.


The views expressed by this blogger and in the following reader comments do not necessarily reflect the views and policies of the Dawn Media Group.

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Comments (107) Closed




Nadeem Akram
Aug 09, 2013 07:18pm

Wonderful!

Aamna
Aug 09, 2013 07:23pm

The author aptly reflects what most of us feel today. However, I'm sure our parents had problems when we were younger and managed to disguise them and protect us from their misery. They did witness the wars. What we're living through today is no less than war - in fact it's worse - but I feel we must not and can not give up hope, if only for the sanity of our children, especially not on Eid.

Adnan Ahmed
Aug 09, 2013 07:27pm

Heart-breaking stuff.

What has happened to this country?

L'humaniste
Aug 09, 2013 07:32pm

Vaqar Shaab, Finally an article which truly translates my feelings. You have summed up the current decadence and beautifully pointed at the tolerance which we once had in our country. Those days are long gone. Now Pakistan is infested with out of the closet and in the closet Taliban types. An easy certainty about religion has corrupted religion to its core. Its a near complete breakdown of our society in particular and the so called Islamic world in general. Its a dark age with a cell phone and laptop in the bag. Unless something remarkable happens, we are doomed.

Asghar Mustafa
Aug 09, 2013 07:57pm

Quite rightly put.

Qasim Aziz
Aug 09, 2013 08:04pm

"We had mercy on them and removed the distress which is on them, they would obstinately persist in their transgression, wandering in distraction hither and thither. We inflicted punishment on them, but they humbled not themselves to their Lord, nor do they submissively entreat (Him)! Until we open on them a gate leading to a severe punishment: then Lo! they will be plunged in despair therein!": Al-Quran - Al Mu'minun - verse 75-77.

"When we decide to destroy a population, we (first) send a definite order to those among them who are given the good things of this life and yet transgress; so that the word is proved true against them: then we destroy them utterly". Al_Quran - Al Isra verse 16.

Wasiq
Aug 09, 2013 08:23pm

Unfortunately there is absolutely nothing left to celebrate anything in Pakistan these days. The senseless brutality around everyone is slowly suffocating the nation and nobody is standing up to this. The writ of the state is non-existence and lawlessness prevails at every corner of the country. The Pakistani spirit and value of life has been marginalized. The question is who is going to stop the bleeding?

Laeeq, NY
Aug 09, 2013 08:26pm

O God, How long this killing will go on. Is their any Slahudin Ayubi or Tariq Bin Ziad to save the innocent lives of Pakistan?

kulukkubaba
Aug 09, 2013 08:29pm

Nice one. Sums up pakistan for me.

shiraz
Aug 09, 2013 08:43pm

Very sad indeed! speechless at those losses, especially on the occasion of Eid.

Awais Sabir
Aug 09, 2013 09:15pm

Very well written and elaborated. Completely agreed. The chaos and anarchy in the country is increasing by every passing day. The condition is deteriorating and the ones who are responsible for it are enjoying in their huge houses and mansions. The thing just they need is money and that need is fulfilled by the Americans, Saudis and Indians. So god bless this country whose people are hungry for money and they can goto any extent for attaining that.

Imran
Aug 09, 2013 09:16pm

Very sad indeed. My feelings exactly.

Arif
Aug 09, 2013 09:32pm

Whatever is going on but still eid is a day of joy as other days may observed as mourning with dead bodies in front of u.

Guest63
Aug 09, 2013 09:33pm

How Ironic YET 200% full of truth of the day written here in this blog . Was he a Muslim devoted to prophet mohammad's legacy (PBUH) , who tried to blow up innocent people in Islam Abbad but some how the faith had him gun downed by the guards before he could give the picture of the blogger tried to paint , On an Eid day in this land of Pure , in the heart land of the capital called ISLAM ABBAD .... looks to me every thing is there But No iota of ISLAM what the bomber held as a faith and what he wanted to do as a result of his faith ..

Hiba
Aug 09, 2013 09:54pm

Excellent thought provoking article. Although there is much doom and gloom around us I think there is still cause for hope that one day we might be able to conquer this infestation of hate. To do that however, we must begin to tolerate differing opinions not only in religion but in all aspects of life. If Allah (SWT) wanted he would have made all mankind follow His Will with no divisions or controversies so then who are we to impose our will on free humans ? This senseless hatred stems from the fact that some of us believe that our way is not only superior than someone else's but we are required to subjugate them to our point of view and robbing them of the free choice that Allah (SWT) has willed for them in this life. You can't have accountability if you were never given the chance to practice freely and make your own mistakes.

faizan shah
Aug 09, 2013 10:08pm

This really moved me. Although I am from kashmir I feel a little more safe here than being in pakistan.. ALLAH save pakistan and save pakistanis.. And free kashmir

Wamiq
Aug 09, 2013 10:09pm

I completely agree with your article. I don't know if we can return to the same Pakistan in our life times or not but in all fairness; Atleast i can say that the writing was on the wall since late 70's and 80's. So, It's not surprising to witness all this craziness in today's time. Funny thing is that people will still be in denial for ages to come to accept that as a whole Nation; Unfortunately, Pakistan is doomed.

Sri1
Aug 09, 2013 10:22pm

Tears of blood, I cannot hope to empathize. Sadly "A few good men" is not all that it takes. Perhaps the end of "all evil ones" is more of that it takes. But then evil needs to be defined. A few so-called protectors for their selfish survival can hold an entire nation to ransom. And it is amazing that they can still keep the nationalistic zeal alive and kicking by blaming everything else, however contrived and blatantly untrue.

Shehryar
Aug 09, 2013 10:39pm

So true, we destroyed our country by staying quite aganist these terroists who are worse than animals

Hindustani
Aug 09, 2013 10:55pm

No doubt , every pakistani will be in tears after reading this article . Being an Indian , i was..:-(

Nina
Aug 09, 2013 11:35pm

I still remember visiting Darga (Haji Ali) in Bombay with my friends (none was a Muslim) roaming without fear...but now ...I don't know if I can ever visit the place with my childhood Jewish friend who is in Israel (hopefully she is still alive)

My Pete
Aug 09, 2013 11:47pm

Very Touching VaqarBhai...May Almighty give us resolve to defeat these monsters.

Parvez
Aug 10, 2013 12:24am

Your angst, your concern, your frustration, comes through loud and clear and thank you for voicing my feelings and I can safely say the feelings of many others. It is time to stand up and tell those who have been fooling this nation for decades that we have had enough because for evil to win all it takes is that the good do nothing..........and that must not happen.

Tariq
Aug 10, 2013 12:33am

Well written, Vicki! There is much thought and feeling behind your depiction of what Pakistan has become: a miserably unfortunate place. But my hopes are raised by this sorry land's young people who are willing to soldier on -- pardon the militarist metaphor -- despite the very serious odds. Keep on writing, and you will stir a few souls at least to debate what's to be done -- instead of merely lamenting about the painful loss(es).

Tariq

Manish Gupte, PhD
Aug 10, 2013 12:49am

India-Pakistan-Iran-Afganistan-Iran-The West trade stabilizes the region. Work creates wealth! Genuine trade benefits all..most people pursue happiness!

Sameera
Aug 10, 2013 01:11am

You have expressed my feelings

saima
Aug 10, 2013 02:27am

This is indeed a very heart wrenching incident of the 30 who passed away only a day from eid. And my prayers are with the victims and their families. May Allah swt grant the victims a place in Jannah I disagree with the writer when he writes " Even during the two World Wars, the two sides would hold fire on Christmas Day, but not us good Muslims; when we are on a jihad, we never hold fire. "...... this implies as if Jihadis are maniacs ready to blow themselves up. Islam does not justify the killing and murder of innocent people in the name of Jihad. People who blow up innocent Muslims are not "jihadis" but murderers. Jihad is done against people who wrong Muslims, it does not mean that one should go around blowing up their own people. It is about time that all of us stopped misunderstanding, misrepresenting and misinterpreting jihad. The similarity between these so called "Jihadis" and the writer is that they both interpret the concept of jihad the same way, as if it is some religious sanction that allows the killing of innocent people.

Khalid
Aug 10, 2013 02:29am

Brought tears to my eyes. Pakistan is burning and our Prime Minister is visiting Saudi Arabia. Clearly shows what our Prime Minister's priorities are. As long as it is not Punjab, why should he care?.

Sunny
Aug 10, 2013 02:51am

You took the words from mouth, sir. Great piece.

AH
Aug 10, 2013 04:04am

I feel for you and the family I have left behind. I simply can not fathom how a fun-loving people could turn into barbaric, heartless, inhumane society who lost God somewhere during their journey better human to better muslims. I wish they had a strong faith in themselves, believed that they were much better then than now when their hearts were filled with love not hatred, they let the higher authority pass judgement and not play God, they were forgiving not malicious and they valued live above all...

Shahpur
Aug 10, 2013 04:35am

I saw one Pakistani news paper headlines "Eid is celebrated in Pakistan with religious zeal". What a religious zeal.

adi
Aug 10, 2013 05:07am

funerals within funerals within funerals within funerals.. but be proud... you have the Bomb

mike ghaous
Aug 10, 2013 05:13am

30 in Quetta, 100s saved in Islamabad! Is the country heading in the right direction?

Anisha Bhagat
Aug 10, 2013 05:49am

Touching article. I went to my Muslim friends' houses yesterday, here in Mumbai. Every one of them, like other 210 Muslim brothers and sisters in India, went to Masjids yesterday wearing good clothes and attar and returned home in good clothes to see their mothers and sisters at home peaceful. Eid Mubarak.

haris
Aug 10, 2013 06:30am

Pakistan is a sunk ship. All my decent brothers and sisters heed my advice and leave Pakistan, carrying the mistakes of your country deeply firmed in your minds. In your new countries, DO NOT try to change their laws and customs to accustom to those of failed Pakistan's.

Saeed
Aug 10, 2013 07:03am

You were talking about those ugly days when we were in secular shade. Congrulation now we achieving real meaning of Pakistan . The reason we separated from India. One day we are get rid of our politician who are the biggest obstruction in Islamization . Get rid of democracy and bring back khlifat.

Bilal
Aug 10, 2013 07:13am

beautiful piece, it reminded me my childhood, when it was peace...we would go for crackers, sweets and eidi now its all about bombs, suicides and blood.

Farhan
Aug 10, 2013 08:41am

Such a sad day indeed.I've never seen such mass killing of people ever in my life. Some one is surely out there who doesn't want to see us happy.........

Narayan
Aug 10, 2013 11:39am

Thanks to Dawn for posting such a soul searching articles. In general it is sad to see such radicalization happening. Why do any body hate other person because he just belongs to a different sect ? Can not people at least leave other people alone a least on a holy festival day. I am not sure they are representing their faith or really following their faith/god, if all these people think of on a holy day is to kill other people. So many criminals hiding behind religion. I guess even grows when silent majority does not speak against. I live in US now and our backstreet neighbors had huge Ramzan party during the night. We do not know or care if they are Sunny or Shia. All that mattered was they could happily celebrate the most important day of the year with out any fear of even getting a complaint, let alone an attack or worse death. But I guess it is not possible in a proud muslim country like Pakistan.

On the other hand author's memories brought back my own childhood memories of Hindu festivals in Southern India. Yes the gifts were small but the happiness was immense. After all we are all same people. Off course I still remember the Savaian my Muslim friends used to give us after Ramzan! Speaking of which eagerly waiting for Biryani my freind is going to bring on Monday. He is a Sunny and I am a Hindu, neither of us can say we are practicing our faith.

Ask yourself a question
Aug 10, 2013 12:12pm

Problem is this religion..religion of love, peace and tolerance...

Ramachandra Reddy
Aug 10, 2013 12:20pm

The author has unveiled a really heart rending picture of Pakistani society. Indian Muslims fought for Pakistan as they felt that they would not be secure in a Hindu majority India. However, most of the Muslims who fought for Pakistan stayed back in India and their lives are far better than the Pakistani Muslims today. Indian Muslims had a very peaceful and joyous Ramadan yesterday, except sporadic incidents in Kashmir.

The author has rightly observed that even during the world wars the adversaries would observe a ceasefire on the occasion of Christmas, but the "good Muslims

Vigilant
Aug 10, 2013 12:39pm

A painful eid no doubt....but for the sake of children's it must be celebrated so they can believe that there some good still exist in this world.

Khurram Awan
Aug 10, 2013 01:14pm

When more than 90 people died in floods our Prime Minister spent his whole time in Saudia Arabia and now after more than 30 killed in Balochistan still our Prime minister is nowhere to be found and according to latest reports he is celebrating Eid in Raiwind. Mr Nawaz Sharif is proving to the New Moghul king of this region but he is forgetting that the same situation arose in France in the past and in some months no king left in France and the same situation could develop here as well.

malik
Aug 10, 2013 01:15pm

It has been twenty some years I left. What have you done to my country in all these years?

Feroz
Aug 10, 2013 01:25pm

Very touching, only the sensitive can feel such sorrow. When human values are dying at the pace it is, human life becomes worthless. A mighty juggernaut has been unleashed, it will have to run its course however long it may take, before human beings become human again. Till then find a safe place to hide.

Saghir
Aug 10, 2013 02:03pm

Very truthful and poignant words in this article. I have family and friends in Pakistan who like many across the country feel as if their country is being taken away from them by the corrupt and religious zealout animals. Please stand up for your country and reclaim it! By standing on the periphery and watching this mess you are showing that you are giving in to those who do not deserve this beautiful land. At least those who participated in the Arab Spring had the courage to reclaim their country and continue to do so. Where is the courage of the majority of Pakistanis who hate the way their country is being torn to bits?

zashman
Aug 10, 2013 02:11pm

very touching very nicely written, pakistanis living outside the country can relate to the pain people suffer back home. it is indeed sad to note killings spoiling the celebratory mood on eid for countless families. May Allah help Pakistan get out of the mess created by terrorists.

Xeroxus
Aug 10, 2013 02:29pm

In India,followers of all sects of Islam live in peace.we would like to invite peace loving people in your country for temporary residence until things settle down there

G Aly Khan
Aug 10, 2013 02:33pm

Very well written Mr Waqar, so sad that these bigots have changed our Pakistan. We need a secular country (which it was meant to be)

Imran
Aug 10, 2013 02:47pm

While leaving for my sisters place, my daughter asked me if it is safe to go. I took the risk of saying yes.

Two eids ago, my niece died and my brother along with his son injured. We all cried for weeks, but we were also indifferent yesterday. How may may we expect those who have not suffered so far to share the pain of some thirty families? We are all waiting for the time when this hatred affects us, but we don't care about others.

vijay
Aug 10, 2013 03:16pm

@Nadeem Akram: "Wonderful" Article Or the slaying?

Jawid Akbari
Aug 10, 2013 04:14pm

Dear Vaqar Ahmed, I was amazed and deeply affected at how beautifully you have presented your story of the once-peaceful Quetta. I am a Hazara man who can no longer walk down Alamdar Road. I used to live near Nichari Imam Bargah (Nichari Mosque) but I have fled the country for my life. Hazaras cannot go to Mizan Chow to buy their necessities. They have to ask a bearded Pushtoon or Baluch khargadi wala to bring them grocery. Life is like hell. I don't know how long this appalling condition will continue. Please, carry on writing about Hazaras' plight. I love your writing. Please be the voice of a voiceless people, the disappearing Hazaras. May Allah help you. Javed Akbari From Iran

human
Aug 10, 2013 04:31pm

@malik: As if it was better in 1993?

Mohammed Yassar
Aug 10, 2013 05:11pm

Salaam As a Muslim from Pakistan it really hurts me every time I read a fellow Muslim is killing another any part of the world. As I read the news on eid day I felt so much pain and anger that Muslims were killed while leaving Masjid after eid prayers... And these wahabis call them selves Muslims. I personally think they should be all be rounded up and given 1 chance to change their ways or be shot and then Inshallah we shall see a huge drop in suicide bombings and killings... May Allah swt guide us all

Xeroxus
Aug 10, 2013 05:13pm

Alla hu Akbar

Yawar
Aug 10, 2013 05:24pm

A muslim is a brother to every other muslim. But what if we are taught that only our group is on the right path while all other groups are wrong and therefore they are neither muslim nor my brothers? This anger towards and hatred for other groups is destroying us.

shahzadi
Aug 10, 2013 06:09pm

Dear Writer, What could i say as you are so true in your writing. every day, five times or more in a day, I prayed for the safety of Pakistanis and the security of my country, I wonder why my prays are left unaccepted. I begged Allah for forgiveness and mercy for the people of Pakistan during my haj,

All these unaccepted duas teach me a lesson that Allah helps those who help themselves. Remember if one is killed and we stay back and watch quietly, tomorrow will be our turn. These anti Islamic forces are after all muslim ummah and our turn will come sooner or later. Pakistani nation needs to get up from the deep slumber, this leaderless nation needs another Quaid e Azam, who will be that hero!

george
Aug 10, 2013 06:39pm

@malik: Muslims are more interested in the after life than the present life. They are so keen to go to heaven. I quote one pakistani journalist, the parsi gentleman who said," I do not understand the muslim mind. Rationality is not a part of it."

aks
Aug 10, 2013 06:39pm

Very well written, but very sad. I guess one has to sow what one reaps; politics and religion should never have been mixed.

RC
Aug 10, 2013 06:42pm

@Guest63: I wonder what the suicide bombers and those who mislead them into such anti-Islamic behavior will think when they see each other in Hell.

anam pervaiz
Aug 10, 2013 06:46pm

master piece...

Ehsan
Aug 10, 2013 07:29pm

The more important question is what are we all doing about it?? As the saying goes, talk is cheap.

Naseer
Aug 10, 2013 08:23pm

Sad to see that Supreme Court took so many Suo Moto notices for things much smaller than this, but no notice taken of hundreds of innocent Pakistani's killed by terrorists. Who's side are our honorable judges on, anyway? President Musharraf was the person who fought all his life with Pakistan's enemies and today courts are alleging him to be a terrorist, what a shame. Army is helpless and can not take any action without explicit instructions from the civilian government or the Supreme court. Tomorrow courts can hold army responsible for killing terrorist, like they did for Lal Masjid and Akber Bugti. A question to all the readers. Taliban have no respect for dead bodies, no respect for Namaz Janaza, no respect for mosques, no respect for hospitals or injureds, no respect for the month of Ramadhan, they kill unarmed civilians, they kill women and children. They do all this in the name of religion? Should we call Taliban Muslims? In fact aren

Bakul
Aug 10, 2013 08:30pm

@Arif: It is obvious that none of those 30 innocent victims was dear one or near one of yours.

Shabbir
Aug 10, 2013 08:58pm

My heart goes out for the family of these innocents people. May Allah protect us from the enemies of Islam.

Javed
Aug 10, 2013 10:30pm

True meaning of Pakistan. Why does world not recognize that Pakistan is a great place? We are the corridor in Asia on the Silk route but so what - we have not figured out how to monetize the goods movement. Pakistan is rich in resources, so what we have not taken advantage of those resources. Our neighbors are our enemies. India does not want Pakistan, so what we still kill their soldiers every now and then. Our nuclear bomb materials were smuggled from rouge nations, so what we have a bomb. Overall Pakistan is a nice place to live except we bury our family members every now and then.

Farhan
Aug 11, 2013 12:34am

Wondering what has happened to we muslims. We kill people in the name of Allah who is beneficiwnt to all;perhaps more to 80% non muslims, we kill on behalf of Prophet Muhammad who homself killed only one person in wars and that too by accident, we perhaps kill to get those 72 hoors waiting for us murderers :( may Allah curse on those murderers and to those who remain silent on these acts.

Iqbal
Aug 11, 2013 12:46am

Very true

Gerry D'Cunha
Aug 11, 2013 01:02am

how can non-muslims believe islam is a peaceful religion after looking day after day killings of innocent people by islam belivers who fast in the month of ramdan and pray 5 times and who also blow their own mosques

Dinesh
Aug 11, 2013 01:52am

At times like this, I realize what a favor Jinnah did to us Indians. Thank you sir. We shall be eternally grateful. Only if Mr Gandhi had allowed to partition to complete ...

Asif
Aug 11, 2013 05:29am

Looking at the down votes on this, one can safely say that Pakistanis have also lost their ability detect irony.

Syed Zaidi
Aug 11, 2013 05:30am

@shahzadi:

this leaderless nation needs ....Quaid e Insan.

Standing... should to shoulder in grief with our helpless brave nation.

Javed
Aug 11, 2013 06:17am

@shahzadi: Are we in this state due to Quaid e Azam? Probably we are.

Raj
Aug 11, 2013 06:25am

True Muslim always talk about jihad against non believer of Islam. So now is it not there duty to do jihad against these terrorists who kill innocent Muslims ? Or true Muslims also believe that the terrorists are doing the right thing by killing the Muslims? Islamic intelligentsia says that only few misguided Islamic people are doing these grouse some acts but i think majority islamic people have hidden sympathy for them otherwise they should have get rid of those thugs. Moderate Muslims are biggest hypocrites. They are paying the price of their hypocrisy.

Indian Multani
Aug 11, 2013 07:18am

Very nicely written article. I am an Indian and I genuinely feel sad when I read about daily killings in Pakistan or for that matter any kind of senseless killing in any part of the World. Innocent person is an innocent person and it does not matter whether s/he is a Muslim, Hindu, Jew or Christian. There is clearly a sense of grief that is felt by everyone on this forum when a fellow Muslim kills another Muslim. Would be great if everyone expresses a sense of grief when an innocent person gets killed in India, Sri Lanka, Burma and not ask which religion the victim belonged to. May we all live in Peace.

rehan
Aug 11, 2013 08:52am

@shahzadi: great mashaAllah.. when Duas are not answered we ned to check what we eat is that Halal. Our country is in debt and we run on interest based system. Honesty is rare to find.. corruption, bribery is on rise.. where ever who ever gets the chance cheat other person brother.. we need to go a long way before Allah SBT will answer the prayers of this nation

Bin Adam
Aug 11, 2013 08:55am

Thanks to DAWN for such soul searching articles. I remember my childhood days when Muslims, Hindus and Sikhs, Christians and Budhists used to live in the same neighborhood with love, peace and harmony. We used to participate in each others religious festivities as members of One Human Family as children of same One Creator Lord. That time undivided India did not have any Bomb but we used to live with peace and with extreme simplicity We used to respect each others religious faith. We used to respect a single drop of human blood irrespective of religious, race and sect. Now with all the Bombs, material affluence, abundance of resources, material knowledge and wisdom but with fastly diminishing human values no body is at peace at no part of the subcontinent. Old men like me been passing every moment with bleeding hearts and deeply anguished souls. The corrupt politicians and religious leaders have turned the friends of yesterday into the worst enemies of each others worst than the beasts of jungle. Angels will not land from skies to restore the lost love and peace if the present generation will keep on following the earthly angels of hatred, division and violence. Period.

Sanghita
Aug 11, 2013 09:39am

There is not a single day when there is no news about blast, blood..in the left side column of the dawn website. Sincerely wish our neighbor some peace.

illawarrior
Aug 11, 2013 09:50am

@malik: if you left 20 years ago, then it is no longer your country! Perhaps you should have stayed, and prevented the deterioration.

Danish
Aug 11, 2013 10:15am

Dear Mr. Vaqar,

Very nice article a real and true feelings of any good Muslim and patriot Pakistani. It was difficult for me to hold tears while reading your article. I am so sad for loss of these 30 lives and so many in past many years, the only thing I have been doing since several years on Eid day is just to attend the Eid prayers. I do not feel like wearing new cloths and cannot afford festivities while some eyes are full of tears remembering their lost loved ones.

I am Shia Muslim, I recall too that not very long ago, but I remember that I used to work as volunteer during the taraweeh congregation in our apartments in Karachi and we used to fold prayer mates late night and clean the place for next day. We used to live in Sunni majority area, all my play-mates were Sunni and I used to go nearby Mosque for learning Quran. My parents always told me - "Majid Ibadat Ke Liyae Hotee Hey, Sunni Yeh Shia Nahi Hotee". Qari Sahib had a very clear idea about my faith but never ever discriminated me. What a beautiful days that used to be and now, I cannot even think of sending my son to Mosque.

Yet we are Muslim and living in an Islamic State.

nauty
Aug 11, 2013 11:55am

it is sad to see whenever I open the website of Dawn , i see a news of killings. Sitting in India i dont have solutions but I pray Pakistanis get them fast otherwise it would spiral out of control.

Ash
Aug 11, 2013 12:23pm

How very SAD that things have changed so very badly. Religion should not do this, it is a joy. To take the basic rights of joy and music from people and to have those things preached AT YOU in a Mosque when we know that LOVE for your fellow man should be the only thing preached. I cant see it getting better either unless you all stand as one and return to your former VALUES.

mustafa khan
Aug 11, 2013 12:51pm

@Imran: We did indeed cry for weeks for baby Hania :(

Allah o Akber

Suma
Aug 11, 2013 01:27pm

The Nice article don't spoil it with remark of hatred. Appreciate good articles. Mr. Waqar is an engineer and true to his heart. The people with little knowledge of outer world then were far more better unless beast in them is unleashed. Now with more knowledge people are inclined to get angry easily. Appreciate the life and live and let live.

Capri
Aug 11, 2013 02:08pm

@Anisha Bhagat: You mean 210 million Muslims. Yes. Very true sentiments. I too celebrated with my Muslim friends here in Bangalore. So lovingly, so peacefully.

cameo
Aug 11, 2013 06:02pm

@Saeed: and one day we all will be living happy ever after in a cave.

Pankaj
Aug 11, 2013 07:44pm

"We had mercy on them and removed the distress which is on them, they would obstinately persist in their transgression, wandering in distraction hither and thither. We inflicted punishment on them, but they humbled not themselves to their Lord, nor do they submissively entreat (Him)! Until we open on them a gate leading to a severe punishment: then Lo! they will be plunged in despair therein!": Al-Quran - Al Mu'minun - verse 75-77.

"When we decide to destroy a population, we (first) send a definite order to those among them who are given the good things of this life and yet transgress; so that the word is proved true against them: then we destroy them utterly". Al_Quran - Al Isra verse 16. This is what Quran teaches among other things.religious zealots and jihadist justify their acts on verses like the ones above.If Muslims believe everything written in Quran is eternal truth and final, then there is a big problem. These verses will be used for violence against non Muslims first and then against sects within Islam and then against within followers of same sect ........and it will continue without any end. Those who do not agree with my view, please expain why has god the need to preach violence,when he is all powerful and knowing and could easily lead his creations to the right path without such gruesome teachings. Peace to all

Joe
Aug 11, 2013 08:29pm

Here in Florida USA we celebrated with our Muslim neighbors with joy and laughter, handshakes and hugs, and gifts for the children. We are not Muslims ourselves, but we are all brothers and sisters.

.

Ramesh
Aug 11, 2013 09:36pm

Muslims are mad people.

Hussein
Aug 11, 2013 09:51pm

Humanity cries why we muslims, the flag bearer of peaceful religion are so immune it violence which has become a lifestyle for us. Our progenies are living it and at this rate would probably step over corpses of our own people to go to cinema to watch a love story.

Its really the time for our countrymen to stand up and stop the madness. We cannot rely on clergymen, government, or some foreign power to show us the way to peace, prosperity, and happiness.

I challenge you all to look into the eyes of an orphan (ignoring the childs race, religion, social background) whose parent left for work and never returned. Then only then would the magnitude of pain/agony be felt.

Perhaps only then we can call ourselves Pakistani and may say PAKISTAN STRONG !!!!!!!!!!!!

Sunil
Aug 12, 2013 03:18am

Has Pakistan become one of the most dangerous placee in the world for the muslims, so much so, that that they can not even prey with peace of mind?

Ado
Aug 12, 2013 03:54am

@Xeroxus: There ain't no peace lovers there man

Pramod
Aug 12, 2013 09:31am

@Yawar:The real problem is you are taught religion. I am a Hindu in India. My parents never taught me any thing about religion, never forced me to read Gita or observe fast. I learned it all by myself. I consider myself a religious person but I do not pooja 2-3 times a day or goes to temple everyday or even once in a week. but I believe in god so I dont harm people or even animals. I think if I do something wrong then I ll be answerable to god and not some Taliban or maulvi(Pandit of temple in my case) of the mosque. So stop teaching religion. Teach them just good things, religion they ll learn by themselves.

Pramod
Aug 12, 2013 09:53am

@Shehryar: I am sorry you did not stayed quiet. you applauded them when they were killing non muslims in Pakistan and outside pakistan.

Zeel
Aug 12, 2013 11:08am

During Ramadan almost 800 people died in bombings in Iraq. The situation in Pakistan is not so bad yet.

Harikesh
Aug 12, 2013 12:34pm

Felt very sad while reading this article....the killings of innocent people will not give you chance to enter in the heavens.

shahabuddin
Aug 12, 2013 02:17pm

This article really narrates the similar feeling I had on the EID Day... Also believe my view shared by many Pakistanis....

basheer
Aug 12, 2013 02:47pm

@Raj: True

RPG
Aug 12, 2013 03:07pm

Vaqar, migrate back to India. You will find better better living conditions and peace.

Blister
Aug 12, 2013 03:24pm

I am deeply disappointed at the moderator who has not posted my comments. I hope it is a mistake because if it was intentional then the only thing I can say is that if this is the state of freedom of expression of "DAWN" than I can imagine how narrow minded and scared the rest are. My comment although was a reply to Malik, it applied generally to the nation as a whole. Shame on you DAWN moderators!!

FactCheck
Aug 12, 2013 04:24pm

@Javed: Silk route, trade, prosperity culture etc., in the area was before the invasion by Islam. The region was then ruled by peaceful culture and belief.

bala chandran thampuran
Aug 12, 2013 05:08pm

i never thought such people are in pakistan.excellent write up

Balochi
Aug 12, 2013 05:49pm

A very sad incident, May the departed souls rest in peace and may the G_d Almighty give strenght to this poor nation to fight this menace of terrorism. We all should give Full support to our armed forces and police to stand up against these cruel people who does not even care about Holy month of Ramadan and not even in Eid-ul-Fitr. There is no other option we have but to fight them and defeat them.

nazir ahmad bhat
Aug 12, 2013 05:51pm

@Pankaj: you have taken selectivity from the verses of holy quaran to interepret it per your choice..suppose; it would have been periodof 1960 etc when hardly any voilence was there in pakistan or elsewhere in muslim countries;what would have been relevance of your interpretation to such quranic veres as it holds today?in fact; the apostle quranic message is general in nature giving background facts of those communities who inspite of prophetic reminders repulsed them like quoom nuh and quoom loot etc.in holy quran such reminders have been mentioned to derive way to salvation and rightous path as explained and detailed in holy quran.. such advosry war like advises are present in mharbarata and other religious scriptures in judaisim and chistainity...hope u will appreciate the hly verse in relvance to its context not out of it...thcx

Balochi
Aug 12, 2013 05:53pm

@Ramesh: Ramesh it is your media perception

Balochi
Aug 12, 2013 05:59pm

@Pankaj:The problem is you are pocking few Verses of Holy Quran out of context. Those verses are followed by certain events of war at that time. and one cannot understand them without having proper knowledge of Quran and in the context they are coming.There are many such verses which says you be happy in your faith we be happy in our's and there is no compulsion in faith and religio. It is just a certain group of people who'es motive in this world is to promote hate against muslims and Islam just spread such baseless propaganda.

Sonal
Aug 12, 2013 06:23pm

Very touching piece. My heart really goes out to you and others in Pakistan.

A lot of this blog reminds me of my early years celebrating Diwali in India. The only difference is, even though Diwali today is very commercial, the core of it still remains. I think the same is true for Eid in India.

I now live in the UK, and there was an awesome feeling when I saw Muslim families wake up early morning and go to the masjid in the best of clothes. Something very serene and deep about witnessing it.