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Tuesday 24, September 2019



Normalcy Awaits..

By: Farrukh Shabbir, Uploaded: 13th September 2012

After the devastating fire in a garment factory, located in Baldia Town, Karachi. An investigation team has been formed to “examine” the cause of fire and why the victims were not able to escape the factory when it caught fire.

Here’s what I think is going to happen. First, the corporations at fault (i.e KESC), will be blamed for
criminal negligence and subjected to investigation. Not to worry though, because they will pay their way out of this investigation. I’d say per life would cost them around 1 lakh to 50 thousand rupees. Multiply that by the number of people who got burnt alive and you have 2.5 to 3 crores going straight into the investigation committee’s pocket.

Then comes the Administration (i.e PPP/MQM), which is responsible for making sure that there are proper fire exits in factories and that there is no danger to workers’ lives when a disaster like this occurs. We now know that all but one fire exits were locked or dysfunctional when the fire broke out. The Administration will have to take their fair share of blame. But, since the Administration is also known as “The Untouchables” they will walk away without paying anything. Their bargain with the investigation committee would be something like, “You don’t blame us, and we don’t kill you or your family.”

In the end, the only people left to be blamed would be the dead victims of this incident. Government will release orders to sell their remains to raise money for the upcoming elections. Loved ones of the victims will reach their own eventual demise sooner, rather than later.

Sons, will become phone snatchers and target killers; daughters and mothers, maids and prostitutes. Fathers will embrace death more happily than they would ever think of embracing the life they were given.

As far as we, the people are concerned. We will talk, rant, scream and write blogs about it. Some will pray to Allah and some will blame him, some will protest, while some will milk charity money out of it. Some of us will remain completely oblivious to anything related to the fire. And some of us will find someone else to blame, without even knowing that doing either or all of those things would be useless. It is not Allah who stands responsible for these deaths or the government for that matter.

It is you, reading this right now, and me, writing it. We are responsible. We are to blame.

The subconscious guilt of this incident and every other self inflicted disaster this country has had to face, will slowly keep eating away on our humanity, and then, not after long, we will go back to our happy homes, shut down our computers and laptops. Put our smart phones on charge and think about the insignificant things in our life that we believe are more important.

Life will get back to normalcy, just like it always does. Nothing will change except for the lives of people who had their father, brother, mother or sister burnt alive while working in that garment factory. The factory which was burned because of some illiterate worker’s mistake.

Disclaimer: The opinions expressed in the above article are of the writer’s only and do not necessarily represent News policies.

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Story first published: 13th September 2012






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