ISLAMABAD: Every dog has his day, but Wednesday belonged to a pet parrot that saved the lives of two people by squawking in response to a fire.
Zulaikha Begum was busy preparing lunch for her grandson when the parrot, perched in his cage near the entrance of the kitchen, started squawking.
“At first I thought there was a cat outside the kitchen. But when I opened the backyard door, I was shocked to see a ball of fire and smoke,” Begum told The Express Tribune.
She was stunned. The only other person in the house in G-6/1-4 was her 12-year-old grandson Akram Khan, who had just returned home from school.
Moments later, she heard someone pound at the main entrance of her house. Someone shouted “open the door”.
As soon as she opened the door, the police and the fire brigade crew rushed inside and darted to the backyard to control the fire, which was spreading quickly after damaging the goods placed inside the store, at the corner of the backyard.
Though the fire was brought under control in about ten minutes, the store and its goods had been completely destroyed. “All my blankets, quilts, crockery, shoes and clothes got charred, including one of my prized antique metal boxes,” she lamented.
The fire had erupted because of the short circuiting in the house, according to the rescue workers.
She said afterwards that she was grateful to the parrot for “working as a fire alarm and saving her household.” Like she said, who knows what would have happened had she not heard the parrot squawking.
Published in The Express Tribune, February 3rd, 2011.