What has infected the brains of the middle-class in our country? Are we the same nation which took to the streets when the price of sugar was increased by a few pennies during the Ayub era? There were riots across the country and people burned effigies of the president. Now, the inflation monster is sinking its teeth deeper into the skins of the poor, unsuspecting Pakistanis and they don’t even bat an eyelid! The price of cooking oil shoots up in one day from Rs970 to Rs1030 and we quietly place the money on the counter and pick up the can. As if that isn’t bad enough, the so-called ‘posh gentry’ of Islamabad further lighten their pockets by going to the local “happening” grocery store in town and paying Rs70 extra for a bag of flour that would have cost them far less in the market, just because it is the “in thing to be spotted there...”
The poor are so helpless that they are either selling their children or committing suicides. Where is the upper middle-class in such desperate times? It has gone to check out the latest eatery in town where it will cost them Rs7000 plus to enjoy an average meal for a family of four. Heaven forbid that I should become a party-pooper in their trivial, recreational pursuit, but if every such blessed Pakistani family would just give up one such event per month and hand the money over to feed the starving kids of an underprivileged family, it would ease the burden of so many less fortunate people. May be then the poor would get to keep their children, and the smiles on our faces would be heartfelt, not from eating a plus-sized cholesterol-drenched burger.
Dr Faria Imran Sardar