The five things Pakistanis need to stop complaining about and embrace

It wasn’t until I left for University that I realised I missed the very things that I once despised about my...

Nabeel Jafri August 25, 2011
Growing up in Karachi, I was just another average teenager. I went to school in the morning, I would play cricket in the afternoon, play some more cricket in the evening, and then round the day off with a good book. Ok, well, maybe the last part doesn’t fit in there, but you get the point. Like any other teenager, I would pride myself on my ability to talk and talk some more on pretty much any given topic. While I was more than eager to adorn my house with the Pakistani flag come August 14th, I was equally critical of the (lack of) utilities we had access to. It wasn’t until I left for University that I realized I missed the very things that I had once despised. Many late night conversations with students just like me resulted in the following compilation:

1) Traffic

Everyone and their dual passport holding family complains about traffic. Traffic this and traffic that. Many a dinner nights are spent discussing potential solutions to a problem that has plagued the nation for a good fifteen years now. But is it really a problem? Think about it. Where else in the world can you stop anywhere that you wish without receiving a traffic ticket? Nowhere! So what if you missed your intersection? You can just make a U-turn in the middle of the road! Did you just receive this extremely funny text message that you must forward to all your contacts? No worries- you are more than welcome to stop in the middle of the road and do as you please. You see, we are very accommodating drivers.

2) Politics

How many times has the political puzzle that is Pakistan been solved, from the comfort of your living room, in a conversation between your dad and your uncle and the old hamaray zamany main elder member of the family? Plenty, I suspect. I fail to see why we lament ourselves as an apathetic nation. We are opinionated and passionate and can definitely lead any political party in our country. Is there any other nation in the world that can reform a prisoner enough to enable him to run the country one day? No, I didn’t think so.


3) Electricity

This topic is less of a discussion and more of a rant. It brings out the best of the worst in people, and their language skills. No other word will illicit more negative responses in such a small amount of time than electricity (the word bharat does not count). Have we ever looked at the bigger picture though? Maybe these mass blackouts are just Pakistan’s way of contributing less towards the climate change. I know, I know, residential areas probably do not register a significant impact on emission levels, but the gesture is more symbolic anyways. As symbolic as the promises of our politicians about ending corruption in this country. I guess good rhetoric runs in our genes just like political punditry.

4) Media

A decade ago, we had two major private television channels that were all the rage. We also had PTV. Today, we have more than ten channels dedicated solely to providing one with breaking news of bad things happening to men and women all over the city (with some areas more affected than the others, *cough* Lyari *cough*). We also have PTV. Talk show hosts and journalists have developed their very own cult followings and are not afraid to ask the right questions. They are also not afraid to ask questions that make no sense. In fact, they will do pretty much anything as long as it is something. Instead of bashing these personalities, we need to look at the brighter side- when was the last time you felt the need to switch channels to watch something more comedic? Never! Every talk show is comedic in nature! Freedom of on-screen antics, right?


5)  Other Pakistanis

This article is satirical in nature. One of the things I learned in university was to accept things I couldn’t change immediately, and to draw the attention of others towards the cause in hopes of achieving together what one person can’t. Remember, no matter how green the grass appears on the other side, it is never going to be greener than your heart once you have left the country. Appreciate what you have while you have it.
Nabeel Jafri A finance graduate who worked in the fashion industry and then went back to working in finance, he tweets as @nabeeljafri (
The views expressed by the writer and the reader comments do not necassarily reflect the views and policies of the Express Tribune.


Fatima shaikh | 12 years ago | Reply Good job bro....really liked it :)
zohaib naseer | 12 years ago | Reply Last paragraph is the best one in your article.
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