Toba Tek Singh

Toba Tek Singh incident proves that we are as fucked up as those brother and father are. I don’t want to mention the details, and I don’t want to mention why they murdered that lady. Sometimes, you can’t even type the fucked-up scenario this country puts you in.

So, I wrote what I wrote yesterday without deviating to Toba Tek Singh.

But one should remember the men of this country. This country has bearded men sodomizing kids in the holiest places. I have seen a clip where a maulvi has Quran in hand, reciting with his tongue, and doing an inappropriate act on an underage girl all the while. There are such clips in numbers. And blasphemy never happens in such cases. Peti-bhai. Business. Never mind.

This is also the country that hates women in public spaces. You disagree with Aurat March or Feminism. It’s ok. Fine. But let them voice themselves. Let them speak. It’s been centuries since they have been in forced silence. Let them speak even if it hurts because they were hurt even by the voices like Aristotle and Nietzsche.

This country has yet to accept that gender X exists. They know how to make fun with this gender and how to take them to bed, but as soon as someone will ask for basic rights, men will snatch him/her of his/her life and would dissect the body of the living being as serving themselves with a raw steak.

Such are the times I love writing what I wrote yesterday. If I must choose one, I will choose none. With religion in Constitution and religion in PPC and no religion in mosques and madrassahs, its suffocating to live in this land if you are not from the fucked-up majority.

To whom can you complain? Even the military and intelligence of this country run their business of power and fear by making hidden videos of women of families of interest. They know who is taking a shower and who is sleeping with who. Meanwhile, someone enters through the border and bombs a market anywhere is none of their business.

This is a fucked-up country. From top to bottom.

The revolution in this country will start when the whole society will rip off its clothes itself and will march naked to the city with the citadel. After placing the constitution and the PPC inside, they will burn the bastards and their booklets to make a new beginning. Till then, you can imagine this.

I’m You.

Nothing has changed. Maybe a little, but not really. I would insist on standing correctly.

I still wake up as a believer. A man of faith. With the passing of the day, the belief system transforms – evolution or devolution. It adopts more of atheism. By the night, its agnosticism that wins. And then, it starts all over again with the next sunrise.

If I had to choose one, I would choose none. Each has its own beauty.

Peek a little at any religion and it’s beautiful. See their books. Their Prophets – or non-Prophets. See their scriptures. Their religious places. I love religious places of all kinds. Mosque, Church, Temple, Gurdwara, Synagogue, etc. Each beautiful in its own way.

None of the religion says to mock. None say to hurt. None say to snatch. None say to rob, rape, abuse, murder, or anything bad. Yet, their competition never ends. And it would never end. And that’s not fine. Or maybe it is fine because over a billion people would die of hunger if there wasn’t any religion.  

You can say every religion is beautiful. Or each one is detestable. The meaning would remain the same. Do you know how many bloody wars atheists and agnostics have fought throughout history?

Yes. Blame the people. Not religion. A convenient offering. Denied. Dismissed.

Anyway. I was talking about my religion.

A beautiful religion to look forward to in the day. And nothing to look forward to by the night except your own self. Your own guts, your own imagination, your own power of will, your own lethargy, your own words, your own keyboard. Your own stubbornness not to make a dua for another year. Then another. Then…

That’s His Highness’s way of life. It’s nothing to be proud of.

From giving ownership to the Divine in the day and debating to get it back during the noon and successfully getting it back by the night. How bright? Did I ever tell you that I am a good lawyer too.

Poetic! How can it be that you talk about religion, and you don’t rhyme?

Are you interested in space and cosmos? It’s consistent expansion. The more we know, the more we don’t know. The more we see, the more is yet to be seen. From masters of the universe, we have not even been able to manage ourselves as a single dot in space. These spheres, these stars, these planetary systems, the galaxies, the cosmos and what not. The black holes – the most interesting aspect of the universe; after Marla. Obviously.

Well, I don’t know much about space. Almost nothing. Except that it is the most interesting subject in the history of us. And that is also a source of making the point that there is nothing. Or maybe, the point is the exact opposite.

Anyway, back to where we were before the usual deviation. Everything is beautiful. Religion too. The God too. The whole scripture too.

But then you see a child with cancer. Or a mother dying of hunger. Or a war killing thousands of children just because they were born in the cursed land. Or any other tragedy. Like a person living on dialysis for the last ten years. Something. Anything. And then you believe that this can’t be divine work. This can’t be a work of art. This is too ugly and too messy to be appreciated.

You may disagree. I disagree with myself too. Because I know nothing.

There is not a single subject that I know of. Master of none.

Yet, there is not a single subject of which I don’t know. Master of all.

Because I am you.

And we are all like that. I am you. You are me. We are all the same – with the only exception that I am writing these words while you are reading your thoughts.

Other than that, we all have the same source of DNA. We all may be children of God. Or not. But we all deserve to live the way want to live. And we all deserve to be respected.

Except those. You know those already.

With that, Jumma Mubarik!

Kingdom of Heaven (movie)

‘By the word “religion” I’ve seen lunacy of fanatics of every denomination be called the will of God. I’ve seen too much religion in the eyes of too many murderers. Holiness is in right action and courage on behalf of those who cannot defend themselves.’

These are words from the movie ‘Kingdom of Heaven’ (2005) with an enormous cast including Liam Neeson, Orlando Bloom, Eva Green, Michael Sheen, and others.

Kingdom of Heaven can be called as one of the most balanced movies on the topic of Jerusalem. The movie starts in 1184. That was the time when Christian rule of Jerusalem (1099 to 1187) was near its end. Saladin was to conquer the Kingdom of Heaven – Jerusalem – in 1187; after that it would remain with Muslims till World War I when British would finally took control over it.

Jerusalem. Can be called a holy land. Or a cursed land. Depends on your lens and bias. Prophet David (Daud AS) was the first major figure of the city. Then his son King Solomon (Suleman AS) ruled the land who had powers to control spirits. He built the First Temple of Jerusalem. In later events of the history, Christ (Esa AS) was murdered – or resurrected – in this city of Jerusalem.

And how many were murdered – or martyred – in Crusades? Who knows? The land is still not fertile.

Long story short, certain empires came and ruled. With the change in religion of Emperor Constantine of the Byzantine Empire, Jerusalem became more Christian from Jewish from 4th to 7th century. That Christian rule of Jerusalem was ended by conquest of the Caliph Umar RA in 637. Some centuries later, Sultan Mehmed Fateh would conquer Constantinople in 1453 that would bring the end of Byzantine Empire.

Well, that was not the story of the movie. I deviated. No apologies. Just wanted to recommend this movie. Have watched it twice before and every time it’s a treat with beautiful OST. There’s a scene in the movie which goes as follows:

Balian: What is Jerusalem worth?

Saladin: Nothing. [walks away and turns]

Saladin: Everything!

Movie: Kingdom of Heaven (2005)

IMDB rating: 7.3/10. Mine: 9/10.

A Story About Love

A woman had a good business back in old days. She had workers but she needed a man to handle all her trades and financial matters honestly, locally as well as abroad.

Then she heard of a man who had a reputation for honesty and integrity. She asked him to manage her business. The man agreed and she hired him.

He took charge of his new job and managed it with utmost honesty. He was not only honest with his employer but with his customers too. If a product was faulty or had some defect, he would tell the customer before making a sale.

Gradually, the business flourished even more. The businesswoman was so happy and impressed by the man that she fell in love and proposed him. The man accepted the proposal and together they made a beautiful story of an ideal couple.

That is a love story we all know. Yet, we all hide it somehow. An empowered and businesswoman? A male subordinate? A woman proposing a man? A woman 15 years elder than him?

An eternal love story.

The woman was Khadija RA.

The man was Prophet Muhammad PBUH.

Then, we became the followers, and we messed up all the concepts of love.

The Other Side…

Since women’s day is over, one must recognize another emerging truth of the society. Gone are the days – old days – when elders used to say:

“بچے چھوڑ کر گھر آجاؤ دو دنوں میں دماغ ٹھیک ہو جائے گا۔”

Scenario has changed. Or is changing pretty rapidly.

In the old days, fathers handled finances and mothers handled homes and kids. (I’m not defending that setting nor criticizing it.) With more needs, expensive education and healthcare, gadgets, competitiveness as well as women empowerment; both the parents entered the job market.

From sole financial custodians, fathers became partners in different settings of sharing at 100:0 to 50:50 to 80:20 or whatever. And motherhood was outsourced. Or you may say, parenthood was outsourced. To grandparents or daycare centers or maids.

The social norms further changed with social media. Fathers, apart from sole / main earners, had to prove inclusive and participatory fatherhood. From bathing kids to changing diapers, chores were shared. Gradually, particular concepts of fatherhood and motherhood intermingled.

مائے نی میں کنوں آکھاں!

Such poetry may not resonate as mother oriented as it did before. Or it may.

Where fathers still are the sole earners and mothers stay at home, the situation is even more intense. These homes are not homes without maids but a mess. Now yes, you may say women are not maids. But then, fathers are not mothers either. At least in this case.

There is division of labor and there should be division of labor.

Today, mothers are fathers. And fathers are mothers too. And in a brutal analogy – again not taking sides – maids are mothers too. Outsourced mothers.

Tyler Durden once said, “We’re a generation of men raised by women.

Times may change the words to, “We’re a generation of men raised by maids.

It’s a little sensitive topic. May hurt some. Or none. Doesn’t matter. A very harsh post – to which I stand – was written on women’s day. I stand with women’s right to life, decision, work, and whatever they may choose for themselves.

Let me add another thing here, since divorce rate is going up, family courts are having more cases than ever before. And in family courts, women have all the chips to play. Men suffer there for months and years for a single glimpse of their child. If you ever want to see men suffering, go to family courts. But yes, not all men are saints there either.

Anyway, back to the topic. Just wanted to say what should have been said. There are heroes on both sides. And villains as well. That doesn’t mean one should be biased enough to bang the one side only. Hence,

اب باپ بچے سنبھال لیتے ہیں۔

Financial Blunders

Blunders happen. But then, there are blunders only bastards can perform with eloquence.

Fiscal year or financial year budget is of 12 months. “Year.” Our FY starts from 1st of very July and ends on 30th of June. Budget – both development and non-development – is for a complete FY. This also means, that all the un-utilized funds shall lapse on 30th of June. Departments try their best – which is at par with worse – to utilize maximum funds.

And utilization is by far the only KPI that bureaucracy knows. Anyway, we are discussing something else. Not bastards.

Since we had an ugly caretaker-cum-PCB setup in Punjab, the budget presented for FY 2023-24 was for July to October. Funds lapsed on 31st October. Interestingly, no one had idea that funds would lapse. Even Finance Department was clueless. You can’t even believe what kind of comedy that was.

Anyway, new budget was announced for November 2023 to February 2024. That also lapsed in the last week of February 2024.

And now, surprise, surprise! Budget has been announced for one month i.e., March 2024. From 1st March to 31st March. By the time funds will be released – i.e., mid of the month – it will also be the time for closing of the Financial Year. Or financial month.

What next? Budget for a week? It’s so gross.

That’s why I say you cannot sustain with bureaucracy anymore. Even good politicians cannot do anything good. They will innovate such ugly measures that nothing will happen yet the whole secretariat will look like an Emergency Department. Everyone is running. Doing nothing.