Karachi is Pakistan’s biggest city and it is growing tremendously, so are its problems. Traffic jams are so common in Karachi, so are late marriages.
Karachiites are suffering from variety of problems. Terrorism, water scarcity, high prices, pollution, unemployment; there is no dearth of problems when it comes to Karachi so I was not impressed when I read a claim by Samandari Baba, that Pakistan’s biggest problem is Kashmir and Karachi’s biggest problems are traffic and delayed marriages of girls. He requested the Government to solve the problem of traffic in Karachi on priority basis and requested first lady of Pakistan to do something about the social problems especially the delay of marriage of girls.
The self proclaimed saint, who lives somewhere in Defence also claimed that he went to sea and lived there for 40 days inside water and returned to the city only to warn about a possible Tsunami which may struck incase nothing is done to solve these problems. It was 4 months ago and I forgot it on the same day as the claim seemed nothing but insanity.
But, recently, when I read a story in the newspapers that traffic jams in Karachi have claimed around 500 lives, in just two months, as ambulances could not find way to the city hospitals, due to choked roads, the claim by Samandari Baba flashed into my mind. If an insane person is concerned about the precious lives being lost on the Karachi’s road, what sane people or doing to solve this? Many new roads and underpasses are under construction but the roads are squeezing beneath ever increasing vehicles. With no mass transit system in sight, there is little hope of solution in the near future.
Marriage ceremonies could be delayed if people are stuck in traffic jams but what Samandari Baba meant was delay of marriages due to non-availability of suitable match. Girls marry with boys and boys need to settle themselves before they can plan about their marriage. With millions of educated boys remaining unemployed, this social problem is increasing day by day, in the country but why to highlight Karachi. Perhaps, large segment of the Karachi’s population falls in the middle class which is educated and depends only on jobs for income. Girls are mostly highly educated and parents find it very difficult to find a proper match and many families could be seen facing this problem. Time is crucial factor for girls because with increasing age, chances of getting good match decrease. Girls have no choice but to wait in homes or find jobs to kill the time. Most of the parents do not like to trust marriage bureaus. The problem is also affecting boys as it takes a long time for them to settle down even if they get jobs due to rising costs. Due to increase in this problem, many people could now be seen living a bachelor’s life.
Social problems are usually not considered problems at all and except few NGOs, nobody likes to think about them. Government authorities remain occupied in only contemplating about bigger issue. Even if they take action to solve various problems, it does not match with the scale of problems. Over the last decades, Pakistan has seen steep rise in poverty, corruption, crimes, disharmony, lack of trust on institutions and frustration in the people. Society is under immense pressure and on the verge of anarchy. It disheartening to note that in the absence of any real effort to address these issues, there is little hope for improvement.
The claim of coming Tsunami by Samandari Baba might be an allusion but history tells us, when people do not try to solve their own problems, they are left on the mercy of others.
What do you consider the biggest problem in Karachi? Traffic Jams or Late Marriages?
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