Yesterday marked the 18th death anniversary of Habib Jalib. For those who are still wondering who is Habib Jalib I will simply say this, Habib Jalib was and still till date is the “Shair-e-Awam” he was one of those few who never left the side of the poor nation and was truly the peoples voice. One of his highly known works is “dastoor” which rose to fame during the martial law of Zia-ul-haq.
Habib Jalib can be easily credited with being the front line administrator of what could have been a revolt, why Pakistan needed a revolution is a rhetorical question. The messages were clear and loud, through out his life Habib Jalib made it a point to raise voice against all those who fooled the nation and looted their assets be it Zia, Bhutto, Nawaz or Benazir. Habib Jalib had the guts to confront them all, straight in the face which is why one can easily imagine his entire life was spent in either great misery or in jail.
12 March marks the death anniversary of this great poet and while TV channels were show casing special programs on the life of this great revolutionary a thought popped into my mind, why if he was such a revolutionary did he failed to bring change? Why he and others like him (Qateel Shifai, Faiz Ahmed Faiz, Ustad Qamar Jalalwi) died in such dejected conditions?
The answer is simple and yet very complex, “people” Yes that’s right, in order to bring a change there are two key elements which are required, firstly a leader someone who can lead the way and has the vision along with the guts to stand against the flow of tides but secondly and most importantly the people who want this change to be brought. No world revolution could be possible had the people not stood by their leader, what can a single person do when he/she is up against an entire force? The logic is simple, if the people, the nation, the ones who walk behind the torch bearer are willing a revolt will come and if they are not willing it will fail.
I will quickly give two references to this argument both which are very commonly known.
One of the most cherished and talked about revolt in our homeland is the Iranian revolution, how the great leader Khomeni over threw the Shah’s throne. An often neglected and undermined fact to this revolt is the people who died in “maidan-e-inqalab” (field of revolution). Khomeni was not even in Iran at the time, he flew in from France and when he set foot on his home soil he was welcomed by the entire Iranian nation. I will spare the details of how the Iranian revolt went on, and will proceed to my second example which I know will raise a lot of questions against me.
Hazrat Moosa (a.s) the holy prophet of Allah was send upon the Egyptian nation and at a time when the ruler (Pharaoh) was the most evil history had seen. Has any of us ever wondered why Hazrat Moosa (a.s) after being a prophet and messenger of Allah did not revolt against the Pharaoh? Why did he not fought the evil and end his reign? The answer is this, the followers of Hazrat Moosa (a.s) were neither willing nor prepared enough for the revolt.
The nation had been expecting a warrior as their savior, who they thought will somehow defeat the most evil man on the face of earth. When Hazrat Moosa (a.s) finally came he did not fight the pharaoh, instead he took his entire nation and decided to leave the place. Had then Hazrat Moosa (a.s) revolted he would have no one except a few standing by his side and that would have been the end of all his efforts.
The recent revolutions of Tunis, Egypt and Libya has been the center of discussions for quite some time and everyone deep in their hearts knows that our nation, our country Pakistan needs nothing less than a revolution. Each one of us will agree to the fact that Pakistan needs a major change, not only in its leadership but also in its entire system. Why then we still have not sparked a revolt amongst us? Is this because we don’t have a leader? or is it because we as a nation are still not willing enough to stand up for our rights? Have we grown so afraid of death and have become so selfish that we will not even stand up for own future generations? Had our ancestors thought so where would we have been today?
The very mind set and attitude of the Pakistani nation (that includes me as well) has been long set to what I call the “escape route”. Everyone loves to talk about change but when asked how that change can be brought or what are we doing on a personal level to bring a change we simply take the escape route and shy away. Many of us term a cliche “when the time will come” we will do this and we will do that and then go on babbling about it, well as I see it the time will never come, it has to be brought.
To break the trend I will follow up with a second post suggesting ways change can be brought in our country, those will be simply suggestions and points I feel are right. People will agree or disagree to those solutions but at least I will try and take the next step.
Before I end this post there is one last thing, and it is a question I wish everybody reading this post answers. If ever the time comes will you stand by your leader?