I was barely 6 when I attended a PPP jalsa. The only I’d ever attend. Sporting the ‘funky’ tri-colored arm bands we yelled out slogans and wished to see a glimpse of the woman that thousands had come together to support that evening.
At home- every time we’d see her on TV, we’d run to Abbu and joke away by excitedly telling him that BB ‘Phuppo’ is on-air! A joke that became reality for us as we stopped calling her BB alone. Phuppo was enough for us to know who we’re talking about.
As I saw a man run on our floor screaming- BB is dead, I couldn’t believe my ears as just 2 seconds earlier I had sent Abbu a text message informing him that ‘BB is shadeed hurt after a bomb blast at Rawalpindi rally.’ I thought the f**kers are out to spread rumours and then I saw the breaking news on CNN. As tears rolled down I ran outside and called Abbu and Ammi and Bhai and didn’t get through anyone. The landlines died on us. I finally got through to Bhai who works for the same network but different channel. We got in the car and sped away only 3 minutes after the news had been made public. At Zainab Market – we realized that going back home is not happening. Turned back and got on the Governor House road forced by the mad traffic. Finally got on the adjacent road and tried to make our way back to office. 5 minutes away from work – we finally managed to reach it after one hour! Called Abbu and almost hung up cause it just doesn’t feel right to hear the sobs on phone. Stayed at office with no food and water running out and no chai till wee hours of the night. Left as a convoy of 7 or so cars in the most deserted Karachi my eyes have ever seen.
There are enough Bhutto stories – like the time when Ammi Abbu went to the Bhutto house right after he was hanged and there were rumours that anyone seen near the residence would be shot dead. They went and met Bhutto’s first wife who took Ammi around the house and showed her the sofa that he used to spend time on watching TV and reading – … enough stories to keep BB and Bhutto Sahib alive in our memories.
Yesterday- as Bilawal was sworn in as the new Chairman – my Daadi kept praying loudly for him and his safety. I wish and pray we don’t see another one biting the dust.
Regardless of the political bullshit that surrounds such personalities – it takes more than guts to know that you’d end up dying and writing your death will two days before flying to Karachi after spending almost a decade in self-imposed exile. It takes a lot more to catch the first flight after the suicidal attack to go back and meet and hug your children and husband while madmen predict that you’ve run away to Dubai and never coming back to Karachi. It takes even more to be this passionate about the same thing that took your Dad’s life when you can easily stay in Dubai/London happily ever after.
It’s got to be more than just power struggle!
Whatever it was – I shall remain shocked about this for god knows how long and unable to resume the normal life before 27th December, 2007. Unable to stop thinking about Nahid – the unarmed but most loyal guard! – endlessly and what must she be going through. Allah aisa waqt kisi dushman ko bhi na dikhaey! May Allah Mian be kind to her and the rest of the close and dear ones. Amen.
At work as we pull out all celebratory creatives made for the New Year’s as there will be no celebration on screen – I pray from the bottom of my heart that may 2008 bring happiness and sukoon for all. Amen.