By: Asem Mustafa Awan
Freezing winds have engulfed the capital and with low gas pressure there is nothing much a commoner can do in the ‘land of the pure’.
The picture tells it all. These millions of have nots falling each day far below from the poverty line have very little to live on and the wood pile on the horse cart in Industrial sector of federal capital, Islamabad depicts the true state of affairs.
This most primitive form of transportation added with very base of warmth ‘wood’ shows the new millennium has done nothing for these unfortunate have nots who survive on day to day basis unlike the few and powerful ‘haves’ who take away 90 per cent of the national resource with corrupt practices.
The wood pile on the cart is gathered from different places and it is carefully placed. It is the most precious resource during winter as promised gas vanishes each year during winters’ particularly on meal times.
The newspapers have reported multiple deaths due to gas poisoning and all fingers are pointed only at the service provider. The low pressure often result in gas appliances in use getting a choke in supply and if unattended results in gas leakage. The scenario becomes deathly as with no electricity at the same time during gas leakage if at all gets reinstated results in a spark and the poor soul meet its maker.
All the deaths that happened involved negligence but at the same time the trust deficit over the service provider is crystal clear. Over charged bills besides toxic behaviour towards clients in correction of bills was never resolved and there is nothing a commoner can do when it comes to these ‘blood sucking and money fleecing service providers’ which cause losses in billions of rupees to national exchequer. The recent power outage nationwide after much hue and cry from public came up with lame answer of wrong switch as in ‘findings’.
None gets hanged or penalized while many die due to that power outage and for government the ‘low lives’ as always have no priority at all.
This scribe also faced the over charged bill which was paid but it gave a dent on the wallet as many a plans were shelved for paying the utility bill which was generated out of nowhere.
It did get corrected but the time and torture it caused was enough to look for alternate means as the pathetic services at present is next to nothing.
This cart owner is lucky to find wood and will have a warm meal which is now a difficult task for ordinary household. It is ‘mission impossible’ to prepare meals for the family now due to lack of gas pressure.
The rich elite in ‘land of the pure’ have their food and water imported and have no use for the food that is produced locally and the shortages either in gas or electricity faced by the lowly commoner is never experienced by the ‘ruling elite’.
The most interesting thing in the picture is the care and kindness showed towards the horse which is protected with a body warmer which portrays the compassion of the owner towards the creature which is probably the only source of the income for the family.
The cart is driven by a child who is promised ‘free education’ and possibly ‘free books’ and the horse is also a young pony. The two trot to unknown destination as promises are but promises; and there is no such thing and ‘free lunch’ in the world. The two move on as many a hungry souls await the precious resource ‘the wood’ which promises warmth and warm meal. The world to them is food and warmth and the horse cart promises both.