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September 7, 2011 / the s.a. project

URGENT response

This is an URGENT RESPONSE to the BLOGPOST before this.

I have received many many countless messages of support but I have received an equal amount of criticism in putting up this post and saying that I have potentially put many others at risk. Especially the students at risk.

I MAKE AN URGENT APPEAL to the students of NCA to not put themselves in ANY KIND OF HARM’S Way because of me or my words. I do not support anger and violence and lashing back and only reasonable debate and discussion. Unfortunately, as a blog visitor Ahsan Masood has aptly pointed out, that is exactly what my blog has achieved. It has made people only want to lash out and ‘villanize’ elements in general.

I don’t know what to feel. And I don’t know what to achieve by that post. I just thought I shouldn’t remain silent anymore, especially with so many people telling me of their own horror stories in Aitchison, LUMS, Kinnaird and etc. Of rape threats, death threats, phone and sexual harassment. I just felt like keeping quiet only helps these elements grow.

But what do I hope to achieve? I guess I am not as strong as I thought. Things in Pakistan are scary and people at risk for speaking up.

If any action has to be taken, it must be by NCA authorities and Ustaad Gohar should be given his right to explain himself. And then something worked out in a proper way. I would strongly suggest that no  student get involved in slander and name calling. This would result in the situation going out of control.

I’m not ashamed of speaking up, but I am still afraid.

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16 Comments

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  1. S. C / Sep 7 2011 9:24 pm

    My immediate response was harsh but then I thought about it logically and by your reasoning, we should not behave like them, we’re above it. So the best way would be to inform the NCA authorities and let them take it from there.

    • the s.a. project / Sep 7 2011 9:30 pm

      Lets hope appropriate action is taken by NCA and in the framework of a proper inquiry. One that sets us apart from the people who threaten us.

  2. tahir wadood malik / Sep 7 2011 10:10 pm

    bravo, i think saying this took more courage than writing the earlier piece. Allah bring the errant to the right path, and make people understand the shades of difference in what is said and what is understood. aamin

    • the s.a. project / Sep 8 2011 12:50 am

      Thank you so much for your kind words Tahir sahab. With what you have lived through, it is only amazing how you deal with such matters with a rationale sense…it’s almost unbelievable.

  3. Nabiha Meher / Sep 7 2011 10:12 pm

    Saira, you’ve done the right thing. Expose! Now let’s leave it to the authorities. Let the students make a stink though. It’s important that they let the admin & larger society know how they feel about this. However, I agree they should do it sensibly & not put themselves in danger.

  4. Maria Khan / Sep 7 2011 10:41 pm

    “NCA authorities and Ustaad Gohar should be given his right to explain himself.”

    lol. Ustad Gohar explain himself.. as in, justify the act of “JIHAD”???

  5. Naeem Safi / Sep 8 2011 7:14 am

    No, justify his intention to murder Saira. She is too lenient; what one would expect.

  6. Naeem Safi / Sep 8 2011 7:23 am

    Saira!

    I’m not sure what to say to this. NCA was (yes, was, and you know it) a dream shared by the ‘ab-normal’ few in the Land of the Pure. It is in the process of being consumed by the ‘purity’ that this land is spewing since its inception.

    What labels the likes of us ‘cowards’ is directly proportional to our incapacity to physically harm others, the exact opposite of the ‘courage’ that boils the blood of the hoormongers for murders that are not just acceptable to them, but are their view of ideal justice.

    Not to be ashamed for what we hold dear, for we learn gradually and may or may not change our views, but we won’t kill for them. However it wasn’t a choice, still I am, and will always be, ashamed for being one of the species that named itself ‘homo sapeins’. And it might be the only certainty that I may leave this world with.

    Much Love!

    • the s.a. project / Sep 8 2011 1:49 pm

      Safi, it’s true. All of what you’ve written.
      But since we have to live in this world we have to keep on striving against all these odds….at ALL times. it gets tiring. but there really isn’t any other option.
      thank you so much for your support.

  7. Naeem Safi / Sep 8 2011 5:04 pm

    Oh yes, no doubt about the striving part. But the very incident inside NCA has served as a final blow to the hope that the not-so-wise like me still had. Honestly, check with all the old guys, from the likes of Cowasjee to my father, they have almost given up on this country. And I find it very hard to convince the grey haired lot, who were born in the British Empire, saw the subcontinent being split into pieces, and then Pakistan in 71. The lot who have witnessed each and every day of where this country has come from.

    I’m sorry for being such a pessimist, may be it’s the age factor more than the reason that has made me leave the younger lot and join the old babas on this.

    And honestly, I don’t see any support for you but words.

    Take good care of yourself!

  8. kashifzia / Sep 9 2011 5:45 pm

    Please do not equate open society of West with that of Pakistan. While criticizing Pakistan, we always present a picture like everyone if suffocating there. We have lived our lives there. Studied, worked and enjoyed all the way. Yes, there may be restriction posed by the society which can be annoying to someone. But these things can happen anywhere in the world. Please do not exaggerate. I strongly deny the intensity depicted by following sentence of yours:

    “I just thought I shouldn’t remain silent anymore, especially with so many people telling me of their own horror stories in Aitchison, LUMS, Kinnaird and etc. Of rape threats, death threats, phone and sexual harassment. I just felt like keeping quiet only helps these elements grow.”

    Please don’t haunt us. We still see Pakistan as the most appropriate place for our daughters and intend to return back.

    • the s.a. project / Sep 10 2011 12:04 am

      Are you be ‘strongly denying’ my statement implying that I’m lying? Because I have this information FIRSTHAND from teachers.

      I have no interest in destroying any image of Pakistan. I love that country and I write many good things about it and promote good people/events. But I am not blind as to what is happening in our country neither will I conveniently ignore it so that I don’t project a bad image.
      If we don’t fight destructive elements then the problems will worsen. So please don’t accuse me of haunting you by portraying the sad reality we are facing these days.

      And I’m not comparing anything with ‘western’ elements. Can everybody PLEASE get over this dilemma. Pakistani was once a much more progressive and free and safe area before.Our parents talk of great times… and I just wish a return to that time.

  9. mcphisto / Sep 10 2011 12:09 am

    It would be nice if we are secure enough to understand, accept our flaws and be brave enough to overcome them. Saira is definitely NOT talking about the westernization or anything of this sort,

    All she has written about is expressing what she went through, and express her dissent with that intolerant attitude. It will be a great service to our nation if we grow some kind of tolerance level and be able to take criticism without usurping somebodys right or consider them as a threat to our faith, belief, etc.

    Above all, lets be less judgemental and less insecure.

  10. meryam / Sep 11 2011 3:26 am

    V.sad really, the way people behave….I relate to what you went through Saira,and I went through a similar experience around the time Benazir was assasinated.While I never thought she was good for the country- I really felt awful when she died because her kids lost a mother. And it pained me to see the destruction caused by rioters burning stores. Because all that burning did was to cause damage to someone’s property, unnecessary injuries, and time lost for businesses because people are afraid- which in turn means more people go hungry. With constant probs like these- look at the economy!!!Does it do anyone any good in the end?? Should we be proud of all this???

    So yes, as said earlier-by murdering the Salman Taseers of the world n then celebrating it- the message sent out is- kill anyone you dislike , and this attitude really needs to change.

    We can’t change it with our hands right now, we can with our words.You did fine Saira!!

Trackbacks

  1. the Degeneration of all Values NCA « The s.a. Project
  2. URGENT response | Tea Break

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