Turmoil Before Dawn

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How on Earth could one have imagined that we would experience days stained with blood and reflecting the times’ suffering in our lifetime? These days, they no longer just keep us company; the illness they emanate is getting worse by the hour. No sign of light can be seen in the distance that would give one hope that things will get better. It feels as though a wall of darkness and suffering is closing in on us from all sides.

What is truly disgusting is that the country now has a group of ex-convicts and criminals ruling it, and the populace is expected to submit to them with no resistance or questioning. The constitution be damned, the justice system may continue to be governed by the doctrine of necessity, the accountability institutions may be hijacked to secure incorrigible plunder, state institutions may be taken over by proven crooks, and the written and spoken word in the media may be put up for sale for meagre gains. It is as though this has been written in our stars, and we have no right to stir. It appears as though the entire state has been made to walk around in criminal garb, displaying its horrible bounty.

People are frightened. Their fright is obvious. It is visible and palpable. They want to scream and fight off crooks and usurpers. They wish to remove the grim mask that they have been made to wear. They seek to break with the culture of slavery and servitude. They seek to demand the unalienable rights that the law guarantees them. As promised when the state of Pakistan was created, they wish to struggle for the freedom they were promised. Additionally, they were promised justice and equity, which they saw as natural rights. But they’re terrified. Their dread is palpable. Even though their right to life has been taken from them and they have been abandoned on the roadside, scavenging for little scraps to survive, they still desire to fight, despite their dread and the immobility that has been placed over their existence. What a depressing life! What an unending sorrow they endure! Life’s arduous road has grown into an unbearable weight. It must be abandoned. It needs to be discarded.

Read More: Our Precarious State

Why have we reached this point? What led us to this location? A land of equity and equality was promised to us. We were promised a just land. Without regard to caste, colour, or belief, we were given religious freedom. How beautifully Jinnah put it: “You are free; you are free to go to your temples, you are free to go to your mosques or to any other place or worship in this State of Pakistan. You may belong to any religion or caste or creed — that has nothing to do with the business of the State”.

Equal citizenship rights, privileges, and obligations were guaranteed to us. Again, Jinnah’s presidential address to the Constituent Assembly of Pakistan on August 11, 1947, clearly guided us to our ideology: “We are starting in the days where there is no discrimination, no distinction between one community and another, no discrimination between one caste or creed and another. We are starting with this fundamental principle that we are all citizens and equal citizens of one state.”

These were admirable principles that have since been trampled upon repeatedly and contemptuously and are now deeply buried. Human life has lost its worth, significance, and meaning. It is viewed as a pointless, disposable item that should be disposed of when deemed unnecessary. You’re in danger. You keep experiencing fear. Danger looms even if you leave the country to pass the time somewhere else. Your honesty, integrity, courage, and love for the nation and the ideas that were enshrined in its founding keep you in the sights of those who are after you and who are terrified of you. They’ve vanished. They are no longer important since a group of criminals has been placed upon us to decide if we have the right to live and what, if any, will be our fate. Nothing could be more inhumane or brutal to human life. We experience it daily. We endure it. Every day that we live and have blood flowing through our veins, we have to put up with this humiliation.

Anger is present. There is an outrage. There is zeal. This can no longer be contained. It is gushing onto the streets and highways to dispel the impending darkness. Freedom is calling, and a nonviolent revolution is emerging.

Read More: Season of Fugitive Return

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