Lahore in grip of severe electric shortage, Who is responsible for this continued crisis? This or That Do-Nothing Government? What are the solutions, actions that can be taken?
10-12 hour load shedding till January?
The Pakistan Electric Power Company has announced that up to 10 -12 hours loadshedding will continue by the end of January when the supply position of hydal power generations will start improving.
“The situation is likely to improve by the start of the fourth week of January 2009, when present canal closure is expected to end.”
According to a press release issued here on Sunday, Pepco said due to canal closure and massive reduction of water releases by IRSA from Tarbela and Mangla reservoirs, hydro generation with an installed capacity of 6,500 MW has plummeted sharply for the last one week.
Sitting here, fogged down and cold, it becomes easy.
But it should not be.
It becomes easy to just let it slide. Wear the ‘so what?’ cap and change the channel.
But not this time.
We are not talking about an open gutter somewhere in the streets of Lahore, we are not talking about the lack of drinking water three blocks down, we are not talking about my and my loved one’s deplorable indifference towards all that is important.
We are talking about the lives of millions. We are talking about war.
During the last three days or so, the situation between Pakistan and India has nothing but worsened. The critic – cynical nonetheless – in me reminds me that Pakistan, with her Zardaris, Gillanis and other cronies has actually played their part well. Too well for comfort, but a well-played innings so far. Consider this:
- India gets her major city Mumbai taken hostage by a handful of terrorists. Why were they there? Terror in the name of what? We are not told clearly.
- Then India, as the three day saga is unfolding, goes ahead and blames the Pakistani government. Note, there is a difference between blaming someone ‘from’ Pakistan and blaming the Pakistani establishment in itself. India, it seemed, blamed both.
- Eventually, India names Jamat-ud-Dawa as the main culprit organization that trained and brainwashed the Mumbai attackers. The UN – based on proof – declares the JuD a terrorist outfit. The JuD is closed down by Pakistan, not because India said so, but because UN says so. Pakistan plays the UN card well, reminding the world that Pakistan listens to world elders (Kashmir being the first point in this case). Pakistan asks for the same proof that India has given to UN. None is presented.
- The Interpol representative rocks up, tells the world that no proof by India was given. Pakistan plays the ‘jaws dropped’ look well, revealing the other two parties as being rash and silly, namely India and the UN. (I on a personal note, has given proof that the Mumbai attackers were really from Malta).
- The intelligence outfit of Pakistan is tried in the world media. To no avail. Where as only a slight glance over the RAW of India reveals some glaringly obvious involvements in more incidents than one.
Now, what is all of this?
Pakistan has played the calm, mature ‘uncle’ part well. As in most families, this uncle can be seen as the coward, the one without the ‘heart’ to fight for its right, only later to realize that the uncle was being the most far-sighted. Of course, this uncle can be called the ‘mamoo’ if it turns out that the resolve and calmness was based on cowardice instead of cold logic.
Nonetheless, India knows well enough that the nuclear bombs are not for display only, and much more potently, Muslims would love nothing more than a state-declared Jihad. The centuries old “We hold death more dear than you hold dear your life” line holds true today as far as any Muslim is concerned.
Jihad is struggle, and in the case of war, it becomes an armed struggle. Armed Jihad is valid, as far as pristine Islam is concerned, in self-defense and has to be on a state level. Pakistan has very clearly, very calmly placed herself in a defensive role. And try as some may to portray it differently, Pakistan is still a state. A Muslim state that the world can see has been pushed into a corner by India.
If war does break out, regardless of the result, the world will bear witness to the above perspective being the truth.
Our fellow LMB blogger Fazal Ashfaq just reported about the current weather conditions in Lahore which are getting from bad to worse for citizens and commuters alike. All in-bound and out-bound flights from Lahore’s Allama Iqbal International Airport (AIIA) have either been delayed or cancelled considering extremely low visibility for aerial or surface traffic.
Meanwhile, owing to the severity of the situation and potential threat of road accidents, the National Highway Authority has closed down the Lahore-Islamabad Motorway (M2) as interchanges throughout its stretch are not permitting any vehicles to get on the motorway.
All citizens are advised to avoid any unnecessary travel and exercise extra caution on road with respect to own and others’ safety.
Image Source: Pakwheels
As fog envelops Lahore, there is a marked change in the activities & moods of Lahorites. Everyone just has to get out and see how foggy it really is. Children get thrills out of the fact that simply exhaling air gives the illusion of smoke and adults find similar pleasure in now being able to get out for a walk, have a barbeque or do whatever it is that they feel like doing with the change in weather.
I snapped these photographs at 9am (tried but just couldn’t drag myself out of bed earlier :P) and had the most refreshing early morning walk. Tomorrow might be just as foggy as today so lets see how that unfolds.
On a serious note this change in weather brings about it own set of dangers. So everyone who will be driving in such conditions is advised to read the guidelines given by the National Highway & Motorway Police and to generally be a little careful on the road.
Enjoy the fog while it lasts!
“Enough is enough…” Tzipi Livni’s (Israeli foreign minister) words today echoed in my mind in the context of Pakistan. The so called ‘land of the pure’ is on the verge of imploding even before any US drone or Indian missiles are fired. It seems years of neglect in the public, economic, social and political fronts have led to a complete lock down of intellect in society.
At one level, I can appreciate millions in the country don’t have the skills to differentiate right from wrong as they have never really had any creative education and have only been fed lies from the system. But I do expect some more sense from the urban elite and tech savvy young minds who have the means to seek the knowledge to arrive at more balanced views on all issues concerning their country.
To take a medical analogy, one of the primary signs of a patient suffering from terminal mental illness is that they never admit that anything is wrong with them. This only prolongs the suffering. Much like this, I am seeing continued denial on our part to accept that Pakistan indeed has become a ‘migraine’ for the world and will either need to change itself or be changed forcibly by the world whether or not we like it.
Over the last months on this forum, I have witnessed endless debates between the so called Kaami camp and the rest. I think Kaami makes a whole lot of sense and is one of the few amongst us who accepts that we are a sick nation that needs a cure. We will not become apologists to the west if we accept today that yes most of the terrorist incidents around the world have a Pakistan connection as for years we sold our souls to the extremist Saudi, Iranian and American agencies.
Leaving aside the recent Mumbai attacks, most terrorist attacks against the west are committed by people with strong connections to Pakistan especially in my adopted country of United Kingdom. Now if the west were to adopt an equally rigid stance of ‘pound for pound’ then we would’ve been annhilated by now….think of all our big cities resembling the rubble that are Kabul, Herat, Baghdad, Basra etc. We will only invite their force by baring our chests and shouting war chants.
Whether it is the US, India or Israel, we have set our eyes on the wrong enemy. As endlessly claimed by Kaami, the enemy is within our borders. The enemy which continues to rob us of progress, equality, justice and above all, peace. Let’s vow to root out this terror from our streets by denouncing these extremists as non-muslims and non-Pakistani who have no place in our society unless they change. This includes sympathisers of the present Saudi and Iranian regimes that continue to pump billions of petro dollars to indoctrinate young Sunni and Shia youth in our country towards a future of hate and destruction.
Having experienced both Saudi and Iran, I have witnessed first hand the barbarity with which humanity is treated. And if that is the ideal we seek to follow, then sadly our descent into the abyss has only just begun.
‘Few individuals significantly alter the course of history. Fewer still modify the map of the world. Hardly anyone can be credited with creating a nation-state. Mohammad Ali Jinnah did all three.’ – Stanley Wolpert
One great leader who never got duly recognized by the world for his ideas of liberty, his efforts to bring justice and equality and his service towards the underprivileged and minorities in this part of the world.
To us, here in Pakistan, he is and will always remain the Father and the Founder of the Nation; the greatest Leader to millions; Quaid-e-Azam Muhammad Ali Jinnah… Happy Birthday Quaid!!
More on Jinnah: Quaid-e-Azam
Wishing all our Christian brethren peace and well wishes at this year’s Christmas festivities…
Image Source: AP Photo by K.M.Chaudry
Pakistan Air Force today conducted vigilance exercises throughout the central Punjab and North-Eastern parts of the country including Azad Kashmir. We all saw as fighter jets swooped the skies over Lahore, Islamabad and Rawalpindi, boosting the public morale and the feeling of patriotism and pride among the citizens. People climbed up the roofs and at some places shouted slogans in favour of the armed forces as all Civil Aviation activity was stopped for at least 25 minutes all across Pakistan.
Only yesterday, Indian political leadership including Congress Leader Sonia Gandhi and Foreign Minister Pranab Mukherjee went more aggressive in declaring that India has not ruled out an option of offensive strikes within Pakistan fueling the tensions between two nuclear-armed neighbours to new heights. This comes after repeated claims of the Pakistani Government that India has not yet shared any information or evidence relating to involvement of any Pakistan-based group or individuals. Accusations of a Pakistani hand behind Mumbai attacks did not surprise us as Pakistan has become used to the Indian rhetoric and many times, false allegations ignoring the basic fact that Pakistan is itself at war with extremist elements and terrorists on its Western front and inside its own cities and towns.
Pakistan Air Force’s flights over three major cities and Azad Kashmir this afternoon are both symbolic and extremely important a response to reports that India has started moving its forces to bases near the Pakistani border areas and that it might conduct offensives as deep as in the vicinity of Lahore; our home town; Pakistan’s heart and the country’s second largest city.
Finally, we have made it clear that we love peace but our forces won’t sit idle if any Indian adventure in our country’s territory is undertaken.
Peace; but not on the expense of our country’s sovereignty and defense…