Karachi – a city of lights and dreams in 80’s….. I am from Lahore and I still remember how much craze I had in my mind for visiting Karachi, a real cosmopolitan city of 80’s….. A city where there was no concept of load shedding or terrorism. Where people from all over Pakistan used to live together in a great harmony. When I visited this great city with my family in 1980, I got surprised, in fact deeply impressed to see such a big city, where buses were taking people from one area to other. City train used to operate as well. Tall buildings gave a great cosmopolitan look to this great city. My father Dr. Javed added to my knowledge (as I was too young at that time) that Karachi was more than double in size when compared with Lahore. It was a city where people of various religious beliefs, like Muslims, Hindus, Christians, Parsis etc. used to live together.
Then a period started when dictator General Zia Ul Haq planted MQM in Karachi, just for creating a strong rival against his opponent party Pakistan Peoples Party. MQM leadership got popular on the basis of race (so called Muhaajirs). They claimed to be the true representatives of the Urdu speaking community of Pakistan. They also told their followers that other than them their was no Muhaajir (migrants from India) in Pakistan. People who migrated from Indian Punjab and kept speaking Punjabi in Pakistan were not the real migrants….AMAZING!!!!
However the party soon got involved in criminal activities likes mobile snatching, kidnapping and torturing the political opponents, promoting hatred against Punjabis and Pashtoons, etc. Their leader Altaf Hussain turned peace loving people into angry young men. He himself later got asylum in United Kingdom as he was involved in number of crimes in Pakistan and feared from killing. After his departure, Karachi’s conditions got worsened and today this beautiful city is bleeding every single day. The city where a lot of foreigners from various countries used to live in 80’s and early 90’s, now presents a picture of a feared area. I came to Sydney through Karachi last time in December 2010, where my Punjabi host Mr. Shakeel Bhatti was my host for a day. I was depressed to see racial banners and posters in different areas of Karachi, where they had their controls. Karachi was presenting picture of a big yet disturbed city…. It was not that CITY which I always loved to visit.
I wish the culprits who are destroying the beauty and peace of this great city, no matter to which political group they belong to, must be brought to justice. May this city of lights and the business hub of Pakistan glare once again. I request to all Karachiites reading this blog to please spread peace among themselves as Ramadan is the month of forgiveness. If Karachi continues like this, I am fearing that whole country can suffer because of this. We cannot expect anything good from the worst government of Pakistan in this regard. Residents of Karachi will have to bring peace by their own will.