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The “Pakistani Style”

Posted by Haris Gulzar on June 28, 2009

I have always criticized the way Pakistani media presents the picture of Pakistan in front of the world. Showing war within country, lack of peace and security, lack of satisfaction within people, hatred amongst people of one area for the people of another area, blood, dead bodies, corruption and what not? All of this might not actually be a wrong picture, but I have always wondered if anyone out there ever thought about the impression outsiders would get about Pakistan. Pakistan is way way better than what is portrayed on the media, and this media does not only consists of news channels,  but newspapers, radio stations, and even bloggers play a major role in presenting Pakistan to the world.

But, on the other hand, I also think the media should very positively criticize openly, to issues that need attention. Issues, that definitely are a dent in the image of Pakistan but with a small step from each Pakistani, can be sorted out. Issues, that definitely aren’t leading Pakistan to any successes, but can be turned into success factors. Issues, that are issues for now, but can be made into reasons for Pakistan’s growth and success Insha-Allah. This post discusses one issue of this very sort.

I happened to visit WAPDA office a couple of days back. I had to apply for a new connection of electricity. I asked the procedure of filing an application, the required documents, the time it’ll take for the entire process etc. I was given the forms to be signed by the owner of the land and a list of the required documents to be submitted. When I submitted the application, the officer who received the application file told me that a surveyor would come to the site to see the load and where the electricity pole is, and I’ll have to treat that surveyor in “Pakistani style”.  Yeah, that’s exactly what his words were. He was blunt in saying this, as if it was part of his training to guide every customer this way. The expression “Pakistani style” was supposed to be a code word, but the tone and facial expressions with which he said it didn’t let it remain a code at all.

The way I was told about how it all works, I couldn’t even ask that officer what exactly did he mean? I was expected to understand the meaning myself. Being a Pakistani, it was implicit that I am aware of the Pakistani style. Why has bribing become a Pakistani style? Who has helped this style flourish to this extent that government officers direct their customers to adopt this style when applying for new connections? Isn’t it us promoting this style, and what’s worse is, associating our country with this as well :-(. What will it take to eliminate this thinking from the government officers minds that it is a Pakistani style? To make them believe in this country, and believe in themselves. Not only them, but to make everyone believe that Pakistan is not what they think it is…


7 Responses to “The “Pakistani Style””

  1. […] This cup of tea was served by: Amar Bail […]

  2. Qasim said

    Really good thinking.

  3. Siddiq said

    Slap him hard in the face and ask “are you asking for a bribe?”

    And when he try to say something slap him again… don’t let him speak. 😉

  4. aliadnan said

    hmmm … so did you handle the guy “pakistani” style ?? 😛

  5. neel123 said

    People of the world do not rely on Pakistani media alone, to know about Pakistan. The Americans and the British have known Pakistan for decades, from close proximity.

    Pakistan’s international image is fairly accurate and close to the reality on ground, and that can not be covered up by PR exercise.

  6. @Qasim: Thank you 🙂

    @Siddiq: Welcome to Amar Bail. LOL :-P. Thats what actually the Pakistani style is right??

    @Ali: I do plan to treat him in Pakistani style (the good Pakistani style that is…)

    @Neel123: Welcome to Amar Bail. You’re right. Those who know Pakistan, know it well, but for a layman, for a person not much concerned with whatever goes on in Pakistan, whatever the media will tell him will become a ground reality about Pakistan for him, and thats where we have to make an image…

  7. N.A. said

    Believe it or not, we will probably have to begin from the scratch. It is not only the younger people who need to undergo a proper ‘tarbiyah’ process but also the older generation…

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