.. Our Baloch brothers have chosen the armed path and seek separation. Only history will tell if this was the right decision by Balochs or a mistake that further takes Baloch children away from sharpening their pens and arming themselves with the educational assets. However, Sindhis are non-violent people who for much of their history avoided conflict and conquered the hearts of their conquers with love, humility, and Sindhiat. It is the beauty of Sindh that if Muslim Sindhis were lagging behind in education, the Hindu Sindhis opened the best schools and institutions in Sindh and gave the best opportunities to their children.
The greed, selfishness, and usurpation of collective resources is nothing but a temporary phenomenon. The be-raham wadera, corrupt politicians, and selfish bureaucrats and rich hoarders will be defeated if even few of us keep the light of Sindhiat alive. Those who can, must strive and do their best to bring positive revolution in small cities, towns, and villages of Sindh. Sooner or later, the sincere efforts of such people will succeed if not in this lifetime then in our children’s lifetime.
Let us use what ever we have to keep fighting for the positive change for we do not have any other alternative. To do nothing would mean surrendering without even trying!
New Partnership with Pakistan Act 2009 – An opportunity for educational institutions of Sindh to bring a positive revolution in Sindh
By Khalid Hashmani
The ENHANCED PARTNERSHIP WITH PAKISTAN ACT OF 2009 (Bill S. 1707) was passed by US Congress on October 1, 2009 and is awaiting President Obama’s signature. This legislation provides for $ 1.5 billion a year in US economic, social, and democratic development assistance to Pakistan for each of the next five years, starting 2010. The bill also authorizes military assistance in the context of counterinsurgency and counter terrorism efforts. Although the traditional exploiters of Pakistan have embarked on a mean-hearted campaign to secure changes that will enable them to control and siphon away much of the allocated assistance, the people of Pakistan, particularly the rural populations, have waited too long in the line as military consumes a major share of the country’s resources. Their undemocratic tactics to get changes in the Act to reduce monitoring and weaken the democratic rule will more than likely fail. However, if they once again succeed, the poor people of Pakistan would loose a great opportunity to alleviate poverty and improve health and education in rural areas.
Washington DC, September 24, 2009 – A few members of Washington’s Sindhi community met the Minister of Sindh fo Education last week at an informal gathering. There was a candid exchange of views between the participants and the Minister about the plight of Sindhis and performance of PPP government in Sindh so far . The minister said that the government of Sindh is on the positive track but the story of their achievements is not getting reaching to their Sindhi constituents as Sindhi media is mostly focused on criticizing the government.
Washington DC, September 16, 2009 – Sindhi American Political Action Committee (SAPAC) was inaugurated in Washington DC. This is a milestone step for the Sindhi American community that community hopes will help in restoring and preserving Sindhi Rights. The inaugural session was very well organized and in fact turned into a Congressmen’s Town Hall meeting and Sindhi Katchahry, which is a traditional village gathering where village elders and town folks share their hopes, concerns, and sorrows. The meeting was held at the Washington Court Hotel near the US Capitol Bulling. The moot was addressed by Congressman Gary Ackermann, Congressman Brad Sherman, Selig Harrison, and Marvin Weinbaum. The guests were welcomed by Dr. Maqbool Halepota and Munawar Laghari, President Director of SAPAC respectively. After formal addresses, a lively Town Hall meeting (Sindhi Katchahry) was held with Congressman Sherman and Sindhi participants. The meeting was admirably moderated by Leila Agha and Hanne Bursch.
Who will live in new coastal city of Sindh? Why must rural Sindh suffer?
[Translator’s note – The recent article by Naseer Memon, pulished in Sindhi daily Kawish provides a comprehensive account of the rural-urban disparity and how this disparity can be narrowed. Reproduced below is an English translations of this article along with minor additional notes added for the sake of clarity.]
The disparity of economic conditions between rural areas and few urban centers in Sindh continues to grow further as the present government remains oblivious to the problems of rural areas. In this backdrop, many questions are being raised in Sindh about the recent announcement by President Asif Zardari that a new city called Zulfiqarabad will be build between near Karachi. The noted social scientist and development specialist, SaeeN Naseer Memon has written a timely comprehensive article with convincing arguments that the government should put emphasis on improving existing decaying small cities and towns of Sindh instead of wasting resources on building a new city. The key take aways from this comprehensive article based on astonishing facts and figures are as follows:
Naseer Memon has written a timely article on the critical need for starting a unified struggle by all Sindhi political parties for the Sindhi Rights. The current situation is quite alarming as neither the Poples’ Party of Pakistan (PPP) nor the Sindhi Nationalist parties are truly and effectively representing Sindhi interests. This need is also being felt by overseas Sindhis. Last week, one of the largest organization of overseas Sindhis, Sindhi Association of North America (SANA) passed a resolution appealing to both PPP and Sindhi nationalist parties to join hands and secure Sindhi rights and protect Sindhi interests. The article says that the following issues are causing a great deal of disappointment and feeling of helplessness among Sindhis:
1. Sindhis in general feel that nothing has changed in the last one and half year. It seems like their treatment by the provincial and central governments is the same as in the days of dictator Musharraf’s regime.
Early Years of SANA – A Tale of Achievements and some Disappointments
This article was written on the occasion of 25th anniversary of Sindhi Association of North America (SANA)
By: Khalid Hashmani, USA
About the author: Khalid Hashmani is a Washington DC-based veteran human rights activist. He is the founding President of Sindhi Association of North America (SANA) and Chief coordinator of Sindhi Excellence Team (SET) that participates in advocacy activities on behalf of rural Sindhis.
Desperation and Urge to Organize
It was early 1984, when the clouds of cruelty and discrimination in the form of General Zia’s regime overpowered Sindh and its people. The news of killing of scores innocent villagers demanding restoration of democracy and political rights had become unbearable for few Sindhis, who then lived in the vast continent of North America. Often they shared their pain and sorrows and mourned the inability of Sindhis back home to secure their rights.