Monday December 06, 2021

People are talking about —

July 25, 2021

-- the complicated system of tax payment that has Pakistanis relying on tax consultants, who have to be paid, with the result that most taxpayers will not bother as they will be paying twice, while thousands of well-educated individuals cannot understand the website either. People say all that is needed is a simple one-page form in both Urdu and English on which citizens can write down the information required. The tax payment should not require any PSID, ‘chalaans’ or queuing in banks.

-- the nightmarish experience of those who have to get their CNIC or B-form for their children from Nadra, the most ridiculous requirement being for those in possession of a CNIC that has expired because they are handed over a form with their particulars copied from the expired CNIC which has to be verified by some government official. People say when a person has been issued a CNIC by Nadra itself, what is the need for sending one back to get the form attested?

-- the social media frenzy over the distressing murder of a young girl and how unverified stories and so called ‘facts’ are doing the rounds faster than it takes to say the word murder. People say the family must already be in agony over the loss of their daughter and it is cruel and very thoughtless of those who indulge in the senseless forwarding of stories that are supposedly from those ‘who know facts,’ so they should refrain from speculating.

-- the much trumpeted Karachi Circular Railway (KCR) and how hardly anyone ever uses it, so why does this half-routed service continue if it is not being utilised by the masses. People say a lot of funds have been poured into this project and the fact that it must be incurring severe losses is cause for concern, so the provincial government must take steps to see that it is restored to its original, useful means of public transport like in days gone by.

-- the repeated threat that government servants who have not been vaccinated against the COVID-19 virus will not be given their salaries. People say the Sindh government had issued this warning earlier but did not carry through its threat for whatever reason, so it seems pointless now, unless it means to stick to its plan since the cases are rising at an alarming rate because the public refuses to adhere to SOP’s and medical resources are being strained to the limit

-- the fact that Pakistan’s politics is already a victim of religious extremism and sectarian divide and it is a shame that leaders fan the flames of hatred to their benefit when they need votes. People say a PML leader's recent insensitive remarks against the children of the PM are certainly a new low in Pakistani political culture, as attacking someone completely unrelated to your local politics based on their religious association and upbringing is in bad taste and unfair.

-- the election campaign in AJK and why the political parties, including the ruling party, have been carrying out election rallies when the COVID’s Indian variant is peaking. People say political leaders should act like role models and ensure that their entourages follow SOPs and if they do not, how will they ask people to exercise caution, as no one knows whether those people who have been attending these rallies are even vaccinated. – I.H.