My encounters with the intelligentsia of Sindh and infrequent visits to small towns and the rural areas have led me to believe that it is an alarming situation and grievances are building up at different levels. It may be possible to compare some aspects of Sindh’s politics with the kind of discontent that has simmered in Balochistan for a long time. But Sindh is strategically located on Pakistan’s economic lifeline.
In the fractured mirror that is Pakistan, each large fragment projects a scary image of disorder. In this flaming montage, Sindh sometimes stands out and diverts our attention from other, apparently more crucial, issues of national security. In many ways, it is the last frontier in the country’s struggle for survival.
In a column that is appearing on Pakistan Day, a ritualistic reflection on what this anniversary means may be in order. But this would be a camouflage. Yes, it would be a day of some popular rejoicing if we had won the World Twenty20 Cup cricket match against India on Friday. In recent days, nothing seems to have given us more joy than the two thrilling cricket wins against India and Bangladesh in the Asia Cup. Watching TV, one felt that we were gloating over it in a somewhat indiscreet manner.
This reference to cricket should be relevant because it triggers thoughts about various traumatic events in South Asian history and underlines the logic for new beginnings. Our relations with India, in particular, need to be rebuilt for the sake of national security. If we move ahead on this path, a silver lining could emerge on our horizon.
Meanwhile, of course, we must first put our own house in order. It is in this context that the situation in Sindh has recently become more disturbing. The latest flare-up in the saga of Sindh was the murder on Friday of two leaders of the Jeay Sindh Qaumi Mahaz (JSQM). Their charred bodies were found in a burnt-out car near Naushahro Feroze.