By: Shazia Yousuf
I was totally horrified when I read the article “Waiting to receive pieces of daughter’s body” published in The News. Reading about the brutal murder of Shamsul Anwar’s son by some terrorists, tore me apart. Shamsul Anwar according to that article was not an ordinary person, but a hero who risked his own life to save the lives of hundreds of people in a mosque by single handedly taking care of the terrorists who were planting a bomb in the mosque. These same terrorists, later on took revenge by murdering his eldest son, torturing the younger son, and now kidnapping his daughter.
The only thought that kept haunting me was that this world is not at all a safe place any more, where human life is a cheap commodity, which anyone could take easily, and there is no one to stop this barbarism! Even in jungle, rules prevail. But here, we observe “azadi” to the fullest. On the other hand, it was also great to see how people quickly started responding to the call for help to collect ransom money for Shamsul Anwar’s daughter and donations started pouring in even from abroad. I was anxious, and worried, waiting to find out the end result of the efforts.
Then suddenly the story took a 360 degree turn and we got to hear that this whole thing was a fraud!
[Read here for a detailed coverage: http://www.pakistantoday.com.pk/2012/01/police-arrest-%E2%80%98ransom-money%E2%80%99-scammer/#idc-cover]
Relieved, but saddened by the thought that people could actually go to that extent and play with human emotions for their personal gains, putting even their loved ones’ reputation at stake.
But I still have doubts on the later version of story as well, who to believe and who not to believe. The news report that came earlier seemed authentic. And now, the reports that have declared Shamsul Anwar fraud also seem reliable. Reading through comments, one of the readers had even confirmed that he had called up the news agency to verify the authenticity of the initial story. People were bashing the government and law enforcing agencies, and showing all sympathies towards the family of this retired army official. But as soon as the other report became public, people started thrashing the same fellow with their emotional comments.
This means that the viewers blindly believe in whatever is presented to them and are ever ready to pass their judgment and contribute towards fueling the fire!
The even sadder part is the fact that maybe this incident was a fraud but other similar incidents are not. Brutalities were a part of our history, when girl child was buried alive, when Hinda chewed off Hazrat Hamza’s liver, when Imam Ali was stabbed while he was praying, when water was banned upon Imam Hussain and he along with all his family members were brutally slaughtered. Even in the present time, every day we hear of cases of karo kari, honour killings, servant murdering the lonely lady of the house, husband thrashing wife, acid throwing cases, emotional torture of women which is nothing less than burying them alive, Not Just one horror story from FATA, Sialkot Lynching where the crowd took the law in their own hands, and the list may go on and on.
The world has still not come out from the age of ignorance! Daur-e-jahalat is still prevalent, even in those communities who claim to be true believers of the Divine Faith. The only thought that consoles my mind is the following verse from the Holy Quran:
“Khalaq al insaan a fi kabad” [Man has been created in a state of distress].
And thus, I am able to come to terms with all the hooliganism that takes place around us and to which we are unable to put a stop to. We as humans can only try to come out of this distress by total submission to the Divine laws of love, harmony and peaceful coexistence prescribed in the Divine Book. But we need to remember that trial and tribulation is a part of this package.
However, according to the Quran:
“Whatever misfortune strikes you is what your right hand has earned”
At the hands of ignorance, lack of awareness and enlightenment (I refrain from using the word education which does not guarantee enlightenment), we keep on earning misfortune with both hands.
Reflecting upon the tragic events that took place in the past and those that still take place, we are left with two options, either to lose hope completely and go into a state of utter depression, or to strive towards a better tomorrow. The second option is a better choice since the purpose of our creation is trial and struggle.