Thursday February 02, 2023

People are talking about —

December 04, 2022

— the new currency notes issued by the State Bank and the warning that the old ones can only be exchanged till the end of this month. People say it is quite perplexing that the banks are still giving out old notes to their account holders who go to withdraw money at the beginning if the month for household expenses instead of the new ones so that the transition is easy and hassle free both for the customers and the banks.

— the football frenzy in Liyari, which is so great that it feels like the World Cup is being played not in Qatar but in this football-crazed neighbourhood, which is also known as ‘Mini Brazil.’ People say while Pakistan has never qualified for the world cup, football is very popular and excited crowds watch the matches rooting for their favourite teams, so it is sad that the government does not provide facilities to youngsters who want to excel in the sport.

— how it is the ineffective sewerage systems which are the main cause of unhygienic conditions in most cities as overflowing sewers leave the lanes filled with sludge, making life unbearable because of the filth and the smell, especially in the heavily populated areas. People say while it is not entirely the fault of the civic authorities as residents are also careless about disposing of their garbage and blocking drains, a more effective system needs to be installed for the sake of residents health.

— the procedure followed by the 15 member censor board who are specialists in various fields of life whereby anyone can ask the operator to pause the reel if there is anything objectionable in the context of religious beliefs, social values, national integrity and other concerns, after which a certificate is issued. People say the concerned ministry often overturns this decision, a sad commentary on how trust in public institutions is diluted because the government itself encourages such a negative trend.

— how accessibility for the disabled still remains a distant dream in this country and while certain multi-national organizations have now become much more mindful of optimizing their design structures to facilitate the disabled, the vast majority remains unconcerned. People say those with disabilities find it difficult to manoeuvre through basic tasks like a visit to the market or something simple like withdrawing cash from an ATM and in all fairness, they too have a right to be included, valued and empowered.

— the distressing report that in seventy-five years, Pakistan's population has reached from 30 million to 230 million and in terms of population it is the fifth largest country. People say family planning has never been a priority with successive governments, not only because they think it is not important but also because of the religious interpretation given to it by certain segments of society but it is the need of the hour and something should be done about it.

— the debate whether capitalism is the right system for any country and how the elitist concentration of wealth, leadership and power are to be pondered over because nations only prosper with welfare and equality of opportunities. People say according to some experts, underground capitalism prevailing in Pakistan is much more detrimental than capitalism upfront and efforts should be made to correct the trend for the sake of the country and its downtrodden population before the situation gets worse. — I.H.