2013. A year in Pakistan's history when the government and public were celebrating a successful election as for the first time ever in the nation's history, a democratically elected government was able to complete its term, paving way for another.
Democracy, here, is when the government is fooling the masses who have been kept under the false pretense of having the right to express themselves completely. An individual in the so-called "democratic" society of fair speech, equal rights for everyone and other myriad lies, can't stand in the parliament and make brash remarks against the government.
Equal rights for everyone they say? Rights are only for the rich and as Hamid*, an O'level student puts it, "the seeds of feudalism and a thirst for wealth and riches is embedded deep within our society. Riches translate to power and once one accumulates enough of them, their status elevates to a whole new level."
Private blizzards between individuals aren't uncommon, yet the tremendous increase in the killings of young adults who murder their fellow mates has become a trend in the metropolis' upscale area, Defence Housing Authority (DHA).
A society that is a clear reflection of its straying youth with weak morals has reached such low heights that now individuals have stopped respecting teachers as well. Recently, Shuja*, a teacher located in the DHA, was harassed by these fundamentalist set of guys at his residence. "It is a disgrace to be part of a society where students can fall to such levels and what for? Just because I asked Shazia* why was she missing her classes, she leaves sending in 18 armed guys at my doorstep?! Is this a civil place we're living in?"
Teachers the world over are revered and are considered as generation builders. Those who have the ability to change the mindset of young people, to correct their wrongs, inculcating the right set of values in their students to make them better humans.
How and when did the society turn so barbaric? Sunita*, a student present at the tuition center when the incident occurred, reiterated Hamid's perception: "The incident is a bitter reminder of the aristocratic culture of our society that has made the corrupt feel that they are above the law."
The social hierarchy of today's society comprises of individuals who lack self-confidence and self-esteem. In order to overcome their shortcomings and to meet the sky high barriers of ego and self -proclaimed status, teenagers these days carry out disgraceful acts to compensate for their presumed flaws.
Yoosha*, who works at a private school in the administration, feels "it is the modern society at fault. It is this very mindset that encourages young boys to rip each other's heads open just to satisfy their ego's so that their reputation does not suffer."
What are the schools catering to then? Aren't they the ones who are being paid hefty sums of money by parents to make their children better individuals? How did the society become so unruly?
The schools are functioning just for the sake of hoarding money. The responsibility which they have to fulfill is long forgotten. But just labeling educational hubs for not fulfilling their duties is unjustified.
Raza*, a chartered accountant believes "our society has its head so deep in the sand that they no longer have the capability to make their own decisions. They take actions on a single word from their so-called 'beloved ones'."
"We only look after the children for about 6 hours 5 days a week, activities in which the child is involved in the remaining hours is what the parents need to keep a check on," says Ms. Shaheena*, the head of science department at one of the city's top notch schools.
In these times, individuals are facing an identity crisis -- each wanting to prove to the other that his family clan is far more superior to his counterparts'. Parents, rather than abstaining their children from these immoral acts, further encourage them by providing 4WDs accompanied with a train of guards and firearms that are often without licenses.
"It is today's necessity for my son to roam around in a protocol while being armed. We are unsafe in this city, the government being oblivious to the lawlessness that pertains, we as parents, have to take steps for our own safety," explains Shakir*, a feudal lord, cladded in a crisp white kameez shalwar.
Shazia*, on the other hand, after putting in lives of so many at stake, apologizes by sending in a text message to Shuja*. "I'm extremely sorry for whatever happened. I did not send any of them(the armed boys) who came to your place and I did not even know that he would come to your place and create such a scene. I just told him generally what happened between you and me at the tuition and he himself figured out that something was wrong after I left the tuition."
The "he" Shazia* is referring to is her boyfriend, Murtaza* who like all young fiery lovers, got a chance of expressing his macho skills to the world. Not realizing in the least bit that going armed at someone's place for such petty matters is a legal harassment case for which a FIR (First Information Report) can be lodged.
Parents on the other hand need to understand at the earliest that handing out ammunitions to such volatile kids is gruesome in a society where the oppressors are lauded, while the innocent are victimized and ridiculed for not being able to stand up for themselves. Revenge is at its peak and the innocent continue to suffer merely because they do not have the backing of, lets say a feudal lord or a father with sources.
*All names have been changed to protect privacy.