banning rickshaws

So the government has finally banned two-stroke rickshaws in Lahore today. The decision was made long time ago but they have now actually started implementation. Rikshaws are now banned on all major roads of Lahore. This has been done to protect Lahore from increasing pollution. However the poor rickshaw drivers see it as a direct hit on their only source of income. Hundreds of thousands of rickshaw drivers today protested on streets of Lahore with their rickshaws. They got severely beaten by police and a number of them have been arrested.

For once I wish our bloody rulers think about the consequences before making such big decisions. Trust me; my outrage has nothing to do with my love for Lahori rickshaws. I just want government to first arrange an alternative source of income for poor rickshaw drivers and their families and then they can ban whatever. What the hell they will do now? Who cares I guess.

Instead of banning rickshaws we could have provided them with FREE silencers or how about giving them deadline to get their rickshaws fixed from government workshops for FREE? I know Govt gave them some deadline to get new rickshaws BUT obviously they CANNOT afford to do it by themselves. OR they could have bought all old rickshaws from drivers and given them new CNG ones which they are promoting. I mean how much it would have cost either way specially when our khazana bhara hua hai? Probably the money we spend on our officials for their 2-3 foreign trips or a few dozen official dinners and ziafats would have done the trick.

Not sure, I am not an expert but I think this could have been much better use of our tax money. After all we spend billion of rupees on those 400 or 500+ clowns, the federal and provincial cabinet ministers and advisors I mean. Btw, anyone knows the exact number of ministers and advisors we have in Pakistan and how much we spend on them? And what exactly they do?

I salute the people who came up with this brilliant idea. They have just deprived hundreds of thousands of poor Pakistanis from their only source of income. Salam Saab, buhat khoob kaam kia hai.

7 Comments so far

  1. iceCube (unregistered) on May 5th, 2006 @ 3:51 am

    You gotta admire these people’s reasoning abilities. Are they really such dumb pricks? Or are they just pricks?

    How do we expect the already impoverished drivers to sustain themselves and their families after this…?

  2. Original-Anon (unregistered) on May 5th, 2006 @ 7:48 am

    What they really needed to do was to teach people how to drive in their lanes,to obey the rules, to learn some respect for each other and others’ right of way. And can we please now ban the honking of car horns as well?

  3. Momekh (unregistered) on May 5th, 2006 @ 8:26 am

    A very well presented case, Darwaish.

    And on most counts, you are absolutely right. Our money, that the government uses to purchase their mercedes, can be used to finance the rickshawallas some peace-of-mind.

    But rickshawwallas have done nothing to change either. The case of ‘noise’ pollution always sounded to ‘high-societiesh’ to me :), but the case of air pollution is well founded. But that is not what bothers me specifically. Rickshaw drivers run one of the biggest drug distribution network in Lahore, starting from Data Darbaar area. They had a big hand in ensuring that the Yellow Taxi scheme did not see the proper light of the day. And besides, they never did learn how to actually drive.

    But like I said, your case in terms of ‘what will they do now’ is almost scary even. Well presented my friend.

    And ORINGINAL-ANON mentioned that maybe now we can ban the honking of cars… this is something that is not for the government to ban, but for us to adhere to. IF we do not believe that it ONLY TAKES ONE to change, then I figure we will always be blaming the government and in terms of progress as a society, we will be standing very, very still.

  4. Detox (unregistered) on May 5th, 2006 @ 2:15 pm

    Whereas Im not a big rickshaw fan, I do however believe that rickshaws are now a part of the Lahori culture and heritage. I cant paint a mental picture of Lahore without incorporating an image of a ‘noisy’ rickshaw.

    It was stupid on the part of the government to ban them entirely WITHOUT providing any proper mass transit system for the masses. Besides they have successfuly contributed in making a few more dacoits and drug addicts out of these newly ‘unemployed’ rickshaw drivers.

    I agree on the pollution part (both noise and smoke) of the argument but again if the government is so pollution concious then why in the hell are they planing on choping down those trees on the canal in the name of traffic management?.. logic fails me.

  5. marium (unregistered) on May 6th, 2006 @ 12:40 am

    There are around 100 federal ministers and advisors and each of them is costing pakistan atleast 500,000 per month. And this is just salaries, allowances, staff etc. ‘Other’ expanses are not included in this. Recently they have hired more clowns (as you call them). God have mercy on this country.

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