Iqbal Hadi Zaidi
Dawn in its issue of Monday 2nd instant, flashes a very unusual, strange, mind boggling eye catching news that a 15 years old girl is abducted and sold for Rs05m to a wealthy, powerful landlord in Narowal, a district in the province of Punjab caught my eyes and, at the first glance, I simply could not believe as to what I have read so I had to read it again to make sure that I am not erratic on the issue and, therefore, now it is not only my moral but national obligation as well to bring such heart sinking, mind wriggling and horrendous incident to the kind notice of my compatriots, both men and women working with police and other law enforcing agencies, or employees of central or provincial governments, or doing businesses, or engaged in farming, or belonging to political parties or associated with NGOs etc invoking that their inner conscious must wake up now from somber sleep and they should take due and immediate cognizance of the such grimed, frightful, cruel situation which is too pathetic, distressing, harrowing and heartbreaking keeping in mind that firstly not only most of us have our own daughters and sisters and secondly none ever came from sky and none will also come from sky even now, therefore, bearing in mind, we Pakistanis repeat Pakistanis only are to come forward taking the most appropriate remedial and punitive actions to side, help and rescue our poor of the poorest compatriot on such a humanitarian untold tragic issue.
Before jumping on the news itself, it will be quite prudent and appropriate on my part to throw some light on the society and the surrounding environment we live in where how an ordinary Muslim citizen of Islamic Republic of Pakistan has been dealt with ever since Pakistan was born on 14th August, 1947. Referring to the Preamble of Constitution of Pakistan which is the supreme law of the country stipulating that any law, rule and regulation cannot be repugnant to the cardinal principles laid down in the constitution. I will limit to just state that I am going to quote the most relevant portion of the Preamble: Wherein the Muslim shall be enabled to order their lives in the individual and collective spheres in accordance with the shall be guaranteed fundamental rights including equality of status, of opportunity and before law etc.
Relying upon the quote from the Preamble, I am afraid ground realities are far too different than what is enunciated in our supreme law. Actual picture, I am very sorry, is very much disturbing and perturbing to pronounce and that too in quite crystal clear terms devoid of even the slightest doubt, that what we actually notice and see in actual reality is not at all rosy from any set of imagination rather, on the contra, it is very much shrouded with shouts, cries and tears where most of my respected compatriots, be male or female, have been subjected to maltreatment for none of their fault and despite the hard fact, that some of the litigants even agitated violently against the injustice but of no use simply because the powerful privileged fortunate carrying big purse had always edged over the weaker opponents and this is being professed and practiced even today despite the fact that there are laws, rules and regulations as to how to deal in a particular case and environment but, alas, again the superior has always succeeded in twisting the facts, manipulating evidences, fabricating the documents, falsifying the statements in a sheer desperate bid to escape from the clutches and claws of the laws and very much strikingly and surprisingly ultimately the omnipotent gets the poor litigant punished instead.
Time and again, not once or twice or even thrice for that matter, all those who belong to our omnipotent power corridor have always issued statements in public at the pitch of their voice that each one of us be rich or poor, male or female, educated or uneducated, city resident or village dweller from one end to other, is equal before the laws of the country with no pick and choose hence any rich is not superior to any poor and in the same breath a poor cannot be denied his / her inborn rights guaranteed by our constitution whatsoever. Our leaders also went a step further saying that anyone who is genuinely aggrieved and feels that justice is denied to him or her then in that case he / she must lodge a formal complaint to the concerned authorities of the area where he / she lives so that his / her complaint can be heard and disposed of in most judicious and just manner and not otherwise. I am awfully sorry to pen that such like statements, lectures and sermons can be read in our books, heard on television screens only and nothing beyond that though, practically speaking, suck like tactics are nothing but fooling the poor and the weaker if I am not cursed and or stoned for uttering such naked truth.
In this particular heartbreaking case, awfully poor and absolutely very unfortunate Muhammad Rashid, father of Mafia Rashid aged only 15 years, residing in the area called Akalgarh, near the town of Narowal very bitterly complains with choked voice, tearful eyes and swollen face that one scoundrel and wicked person named Abbas who works for a landlord in Multan, with the help of his wife, brother and some other accomplices has very cunningly and criminally abducted my daughter named Mafia and sold the poor girl to his much aged master to satisfy his lust of enjoying with a virgin under aged girl which is really too much barbaric, unforgettable, wild, uncivilized, acidulous and inhumane activity on the part of an employee of the landlord which we ought to realize and stand up against such atrocity, cruelty to be honest.
Economic trodden Muhammad Rashid says that he is extremely poor to the extent that most of the week days, he does not have enough money to even eat daily two main meals (lunch and dinner), forget about breakfast and, therefore, being so nakedly empty pocketed, he has lodged his complaint with the concerned police station about abduction of Mafia but very much unfortunately, police does not even patiently and attentively listen to him, what to talk of taking any action against the accused and poor Rashid is just shunted out of the police station as and when he visits the police station, consequently, the poor of the poorest is left at his own to cry and curse none but his own fate. The poor father, being so badly and unlawfully treated by police simply cannot figure out as to whom does he approach, if at all any, and what else option he has as to how he can get back his daughter from the strong clutches of the powerful landlord?
Poor Rashid has absolutely no means whatsoever to go all the way from his village to distant away city of Multan in a sheer desperate attempt to get back his daughter from the autocratic landlord, if at all possible, but the destitute father just questions himself what to do and what not to do when he is too poor to travel all the way to Multan and not a single soul, whosoever and whatsoever, comes at all to steer him out in such a grave gloomy situation?
At times, Rashid himself is too much afraid, awed and scared of his own life as well now simply because under the given circumstances when he is unable to grease the palms of the police, he does not expect any help from police in getting back his daughter. Time and again, Mohammad Rashid is so much abused at the hands of police that he quite but naturally fell very much awed not only from the police but the landlord as well believing that police, with such unsolicited, unwanted attitude and impolite gestures has already conveyed a hidden but an open apparent message that Rashid, in his own greater interest, must not pursue the case unless and until he is his own enemy and relying upon our glorious past history of Islamic Republic of Pakistan, it is very much feared that at some point of time, the landlord himself and or through his stooges, may eventually even institute and lodge a serious false fabricated criminal case against Rashid in a police station and then he instead of getting his daughter back, Rashid may himself ultimately end up behind the bars.
From the news itself on the face of it one can very easily construe that the wicked Abbas, who kidnapped Maria and sold for Rs0.05m to his landlord, has usurped the money himself and did not give even quarter of a rupee what to talk of 0.5m for that matter to Rashid, which is quite apparently possible, for the very cogent reason that he very well knows that Rashid is none but a pauper who can never ever even in day dream can pick up the courage and ask Abbas as to where is money in question. Abbas is too abominable, amoral, atrocious and black-hearted individual to be described but being too close and blue-eyed to the landlord, he cares too hoots for Rashid and other poor men and women and does whatever he wants knowing it very well that one way or the other he untouchable come what may.
How to say and what to say, or why not to say, that in my beloved Pakistan, Rashid is not all alone facing such like hell rather very much regretfully, thousands and not hundreds, are undergoing such like fate for decades and not years to be honest and hardly a few could be very fortunate enough, who can be counted on fingers tips, got justice from our courts of law otherwise bulk majority of the litigants have been cut into pieces by blunt sword in its truest sense since they had to spend whatever little money they had, sold their cattle and jewelry etc and pursued their cases at courts of law but without any success whatsoever. Some of the most unfortunates have also borrowed money on very exorbitant terms of repayment, for engaging lawyers to plead their cases but very much ironically they ended up in losing the case not on its merits but through smart manipulation and twisting by the rich strong opponents.
It will be very much unfair, immoral and biased on my part not to praise daily Dawn for publishing the story otherwise, none on the face of earth, would have even known about such abduction of Maria Rashid and it is very much hoped that may be any kind hearted person who reads the news, come forward at his own, volunteering his services, of course without any personal hidden or apparent interest, to help the destitute Rashid under such awfully distressed situation.
Rashid through the courtesy of Dawn has appealed to our honorable Prime Minster Imran Khan and Punjab Chief Minister Usman Buzdar in the name of humanity to use their good offices, on one hand helping him getting back his daughter from the landlord of Multan and, on the other hand punish all those who are directly or indirectly involved in such heinous crime against the humanity. I wish best of luck for Mohammad Rashid and if even CM Buzdar takes it up, Maria Rashid will be recovered and united back with his parents inshallah.
In conclusion, I will have to say quite aloud that PM and CM must punish all the police officials who quite willfully and intentionally ignored and sidelined Mohammad Rashid though they are duty bound to redress the complaints of the sufferers and ever since police has quite blatantly, grossly and purposely failed in their duties for which they are paid from our national exchequer, they must be suitably and exemplary punished and the such punishment news must be made public through all the media outlets including all the television channels so that Punjab police in particular, and the rest in general, learn life remembering lesson resulting in that this can be the very last case of its nature and will never ever be repeated anywhere in my beloved Pakistan be it Punjab, Sindh, Baluchistan, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and or Gilgit Baltistan for that matter.
Iqbal Hadi Zaidi / Kuwait / firstname.lastname@example.org /