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“The Darkness of Mir Saab’s Simplicity and Endless Nights”

by Wajahat Masood
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wajahat Masood

In the famous verse “Shah Jahanabad ke shayar ne to Mir kiya sada hain,” the reference is not towards the renowned poet Mir Taqi Mir, but our contemporary, Hameed Mir. Hameed Mir, with 36 years of experience in journalism and a profound understanding of history, delves into the deep well of news and historical consciousness, providing us with insights into political events. We share the same era as Hameed Mir. While differences may exist in our individual natures, there is often a convergence of opinions in the final analysis of national affairs, and it remains so today. It was noted when my dear friend wrote in a recent column, “Pakistan has changed.” It immediately reminded me of Faiz Ahmed Faiz’s lines: “We were simple. They thought it was acceptance; the time when autumn arrived, they thought it was spring.”

Nasir Kazmi’s voice echoed in my ears, “There are still some caravans of letters in the deep night; keep burning the lamps by the shore.” In the midst of the dusty covers of Hafiz’s poetry, Sheer Khanjahi’s noble verses appeared, “The locusts will not survive on our crop this time, as our destinies change, so do our ways.” The return of Sheikh Ayaz, who declared the return of dreams on the waves of the Sindhu, reverberated, “It will rain; the drum will beat the retreat; and deep red flowers, when they bloom, will meet.”

I don’t find it easy to believe Hameed Mir’s view that Pakistan has changed. At least it hasn’t changed in the shade under which the caravan of pain set off. The Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) Manifesto Plant was planted in April 1996, placed in a corner of Green House. In late 2006, it reached a stage where personal interests and the institutional interests of the ruler became inseparable. We saw this stage during the winter season of 1969. In December 1971, the same conflict led to the imposition of protective custody on Yahya Khan. The same symbolism played out in the hot season of 1988. In March 2007, there were three fundamental movements: the Charter of Democracy, the Lawyers’ Movement, and Pervez Musharraf’s future presidential ambitions. In December 2007, the assassination of Benazir Bhutto made the Charter of Democracy powerless. The Lal Masjid operation and the restoration of the judiciary were demonstrations of non-traditional political gymnastics.

The March 2009 deal was sabotaged. The November 2008 Mumbai attacks led to the unveiling of Operation Gibraltar. Those who negotiated with the Afghan Taliban on the Durand Line suddenly turned hostile. The reconciliation of the Charter of Democracy was termed a mockery. Despite that, the constitutional amendment for a parliamentary democracy saved the day, but the drums of Memogate resonated. The 2013 election results were not accepted from day one. While Mian Nawaz Sharif may not have been a shining name, Mushahidullah Khan’s name was etched on the tablet of the 2014 sit-ins. Those who couldn’t pull off a long march in 2014 faced defeat in October 2016. Now, the oracle has revealed the truth about Dawn leaks. On April 14, 2022, Major General Babar Iftikhar expressed his beautiful intentions, but time’s sands have now buried them. Regardless of how May 9’s events are portrayed in the national media, it’s a fact that in the final battle of mutual interests among United Fruit Company employees, Imran Khan’s political face has been shattered. Imran Khan is in jail. His party’s leaders have vanished into the Nepalese mountains. However, none of them are Rani Jhansi or Tantia Tope.

Mian Nawaz Sharif’s return on October 21 and the gathering at Minar-e-Pakistan were welcome, but behind this popular expression lies a heartbeat that was not heard, which we felt on April 10, 1986, and October 18, 2007. Hameed Mir says that Pakistan has changed. Perhaps it has, but it’s not the kind of change that heralds the arrival of spring and the season of Gulshan and the song of Hazar. Right now, we are in the endless darkness, trying to kindle the inner flame.

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