The Independence Day’s usual suspects

Published: August 14, 2011

Pakistan to celebrate August 14 with all its eccentricities.

ISLAMABAD: 

Happy Birthday Pakistan!

As the flag flies high above almost anything stationary or moving, Pakistan sees an Independence Day spirit not common in many parts of the world.

While BBQs and family gatherings are seen across the globe on Independence Day, Pakistan sees a great increase in the consumption of fuel and hospitals get ready to entertain the victims of the hooliganism that takes place on this fortunate night.

As the sun starts to set, the youth of Pakistan feel it’s their duty to patrol all the major avenues in their respective cities, or better yet, start wheeling around. Families come out to see the lights, and even though for the past four years we’ve had an energy crisis, people have not faltered in their tradition of planning a family outing on Jinnah Avenue.

This year August 14 falls right in the middle of Ramazan, however, from the views The Express Tribune has gotten, Islamabad’s spirit of Independence Day has not faltered.

Bilal, a young salesman at Illusions, said, “Ramazan or no Ramazan, we will be patrolling the streets and dancing to national songs.”

There are distinct groups of people that can be seen on the Independence Day eve:

The Patrolling Squad

This group is the most predominant bunch of young souls out there to show the country that they are still alive and kicking. They might not do anything all year, but on Independence Day they feel it’s their right to come out on the streets dancing and prancing. Riding cars, motorbike and even an occasional donkey cart, you can never miss the Patrolling Squad.

Aqeel Mohammad, who works at a newsstand, said, “Nothing can stop us from coming out on the roads! We wait every year for it.”

The concerned parent

Each year throngs of families come out to witness the “lights” and each year they go home cribbing and disappointed due to the mad rush caused by the ‘patrolling squad’. Fathers yell for the safety of those wheeling around and swear that next year they will never come out, and yet, as the next year rolls around, you will see them out again doing that exact same thing.

Fariha, a housewife, said, “We take the kids out every year. Its madness and a little dangerous but it’s a tradition.”

The poor law enforcer

Also known as the police, this group is diminished and almost washed out and regardless what they try to do they are overpowered and outnumbered. The more they try to control the situation the more it gets out of hand.

But they are not willing to give in so easy this year. “This time police falcons and motorbike squads have been deployed along the expressway and other highways to check one-wheeling and car races,” said Khalid Awan, an inspector at Rescue 15.

The nonchalant crew

This group comprises of the sane people who, by default or by using their better judgment, realise that it is not wise to get out and stay at home to relax or hang out with some friends.

Amna, a lawyer, said, “It is too crowded and gross to go out. I’d rather sit at home safe than hurling curses at the craziness that happens on 14th August.”

Even though much hasn’t changed this year and most people plan on celebrating Independence Day as usual and want to start after iftari and continue on till sehri time, some people feel that the celebrations this year should be mellow in memory of all the people who lost their lives.

A group of educated and aware citizens of Islamabad realise the gravity of the situation our country is going through and for that reason they have organised an event “Say a little Prayer” at the park next to Rendezvous and Civil Junction in F-7, from 8 to 10pm, to pray for the betterment of Pakistan’s future.

Nadeem Chawhan, a well-known motivational speaker will be speaking at the event along with a few other individuals who have made efforts to change lives for the better.

What this group of young patriots is doing is not a political rally or a protest but a peaceful gathering of like-minded people who want peace and prosperity in the country.

Published in The Express Tribune, August 14th, 2011.

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Reader Comments (10)

  • Zafar Kamran
    Aug 14, 2011 - 7:00AM

    Happy dependence day fellow pakistanis. We celebrate one more year of our dependence on america, china, india, saudi arabia. Congratulations!

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  • Amjad
    Aug 14, 2011 - 7:11AM

    Wish all Pakistanis a very HAPPY INDEPENDENCE DAY

    LONG LIVE PAKISTAN INSHALLAH ….

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  • Realist.
    Aug 14, 2011 - 7:54AM

    I LOVE YOU PAKISTAN You’re In My Blood.
    No matter how worse the circumstances are i BELIEVE that these bad days won’t last long & we will see Peace In this country We Will Prosper.
    We’d built this nation before, we’ll built it again.
    God bless Pakistan.
    Happy Independence Day Pakistanis!!
    Pakistan Zindabad!

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  • rashid
    Aug 14, 2011 - 8:11AM

    Happy Birthday Pakistan!!!

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  • Aug 14, 2011 - 9:31AM

    I congratulate the nation on the 64th Independence Day. I am thankful to the Father of the Nation Quaid-e-Azam Mohammad Ali Jinnah and his colleagues who made tireless efforts to create Pakistan, a separate homeland for the people of Pakistan.

    I am optimistic that despite many hurdles which have come on our way and will come in future will be dealt by the people of Pakistan, who have positive minds and would like to see a prosperous Pakistan.

    May Al-Mighty Allah save Pakistan from all evil forces. Ameen.

    PAKISTAN ZINDABAD

    Syed A. Mateen

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  • Ahmer Ali
    Aug 14, 2011 - 10:36AM

    Assalam-o-Allaikum Warahmatullah.14th August always remembers us that we are an independent nation and we have our own religious and cultural values and this is why Quaid-e-Azam struggled for independent Pakistan just on the two nations theory by which it was clearly mentioned that Hindus and Muslims can’t live with each others but unfortunately now-a-days our all events related to happy occasions are full of Hindu cultural customs and traditions and our all foreign policies even internal policies are being by USA.Is this our real freedom?Every Pakistani must cerebrate about it that why we are so much more dependent on US aid?Why our all happy events and occasions are full of Hindu cultural customs and traditions?Under these the most saddened conditions can we claim that we are enjoying real independence and freedom?

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  • rizwan khan
    Aug 14, 2011 - 11:01AM

    ” you are free,you are free to go to your temples,you are free to go to your mosques or any other place of worship in the state of pakistan;you may belong to any religion,race or creed –that has nothing to do with the business of the state “

    muhammad ali jinnah
    11 august 1947

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  • rikky(India)
    Aug 14, 2011 - 12:50PM

    @rizwan khan:
    ” you are free,you are free to go to your temples,you are free to go to your mosques or any other place of worship in the state of pakistan;you may belong to any religion,race or creed –that has nothing to do with the business of the state “
    muhammad ali jinnah
    11 august 1947

    REALLY

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  • Abhi
    Aug 14, 2011 - 2:37PM

    @rikky
    I think he said it because he was Indian at that time :)

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  • Malik Sajjad
    Aug 14, 2011 - 7:51PM

    DIL DIL PAKISTAN. JAAN JAAN PAKISTAN.
    PAKISTAN ZINDABAD. PAKISTAN PAAIINDABAD.

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