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Friday, July 10, 2020


I keep trying to see which other Country has a White (or any color) Stripe or Symbol on the their flag to represent Minorities? Can someone list them here or in my Social media pages, please!
Placing these items 'separately' on the flag
already 'separates' them.

These minorities are part of the country and should be part of whatever the country stands for. Like Unity, Faith, & Discipline. (and I don't mean the rather new meanings these have been given!)

If Countries want Symbolism, that's fine. India has a Chakra. Many Countries have Crosses. Some have colored their flag backgrounds Greens … and others have Reds. They represent that most of these countries have a feeling about some ideology. They don't have a White Margin, like we do.

So often am I reminded of these things, specially when I pass by the large Christian Cross in Karachi, which is absolutely great to see. It's not about the Brits who ruled us (or the Americans who keep trying). It's about  Christianity. I was told that Christians are People of the Book, so that's OK. Lovely …

But there are a few Jews here (We even have at least one that 'officially' claims he is a Jew, while others hide themselves under different names). They don't have a Place of Worship here but are also part of the People of the Book. Can they build a large statue of the Wailing Wall (or something else) here as a token of being Pakistan's Jew.

I sometimes wonder if Hindus can put up a Large Krishna or Ganesh in a Public Place (but they are even opposed from building a new Temple). But that seems unlikely.

And there are other religions here (Sikhs, Parsis, even non-God religions like Buddhism). Can they build things here in Public Places? Guess not … other than their present day temples or whatever they have.

After all our adopted father country, Saudi Arabia, doesn't allow any religion other than Muslims to have a public place of worship there. So naturally we follow.

On the other hand, imagine Muslims wanting to build a Mosque and being disallowed by the residents of another country to do this. There's be riots everywhere, And protest marches. In fact we'd even have them in Pakistan where public property would be destroyed.

I think I'll give up thinking.

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Sunday, July 05, 2020

My Nānihāl … 4

That's me with my cousins: Najma, Razia, Attiya, Suraiya
at Pudlo & Nighat's Wedding in Bareilly

Of Nana Jan's three sisters (they were all older than him) I will start with the youngest one since he was very fond of her (probably talay oopar kay thay).

Her name (as I can glean from the shajrah I have) was Umme Shafique. She had a son called Shafique (which is why I think that her name may have changed to Umme Shafique after he was born), and two daughters: Nisar and Inam. These two will come in the next two chapters in this blog series. This is Shafique Mamooñ's family;

The First Generation

Qamarul Hasan, married to Anwari Khatoon 
       Children: Nayer (Annu), Nighat, Talat

* I met Qamar Bhai in Karachi and also at Bareilly at Nighat's wedding. Pleasant and affectionate. He was also a friend of my mamooñ, Asaf. Met his children at the wedding.

Qamarul Hasan

Shamsul Hasan, married to Zubaida Khatoon
       He died early. No children.

* Soon after partition Shammu Bhai (along with a relative: Fasih Mamooñ) used to come to our house very regularly. Some cousins (including me) used to call the two Laurel & Hardy because of their weights. Shammu Bhai died after a sudden seizure. My father, a doctor, arrived there at his house as soon as I phoned him but SB was already dead.

(I have no pictures of Shamsul Hasan but Rubina has said
she'd send one next week when she goes to Gorakhpur)

Zubaida Khatoon

Suraiya, married to Izhar Abbasi
       Children: Kamal (Pudlo), Pervez (Pozy), Rukhsana, Mahnaz (Nazo)

* Appi Jan (Suraiya) was a great favorite of mine. I spent much time with her children. I also stayed at her house for a few days in Lahore when I started at Government College.

Appi Jan and Izhar Bhai
Appi Jan & I

Najma (aka Safiya), married to Hasan Wahaj Alvi
         Children: Suhail, Samina, Kausar, Ijlal.

• Appi Jania (Najma) was a wonderfully amazing person. Sadly she died early with Cancer. I spent many nights at her house during my trips to Karachi during my Merchant Navy days. I miss her very often, specially her laughter at everything.

Appi Jania
Hasan Wahaj Bhai

The Second Generation
  — Ragni Marea's Cousins —

Qamar Bhai's Children

Nayer, married to Shahida.
        Children: Rubina, Ahmed

* Rather brief meetings, twice. Once at Nighat's wedding and once later. 


 Nighat, married to her cousin Kamal
        Children: Faisal, Saba

* Having met her at her wedding, I became very fond of her when she came to Karachi. There are so many things to think about when I look back about my life with her. Always a lot of fun and very friendly.


Talat, married to Aziz
        Children: Saman (married to cousin Faisal), Afreen, Omar

* Talat is a remarkable person. She writes well (in fact we started our correspondence when she wrote poems). Her strong interest in political ideas is fantastic and she comes across with some very good ideas.


Appi Jan's Children

 Kamal, married to his cousin Nighat
        Children: Faisal, Saba

* I met Pudlo and Pozy first in Calcutta when I was 6 years old. Later on they became my school-mates at Marie Colaco High School, Karachi. Pudlo was a Scout and Pozy & I were in his group. He was an absolutely adorable person and extremely affectionate. It was really sad to see him go with his illness. Very brave person.

(Pudlo came to the Karachi Port to see me on my ship at 19th September in the early morning. He asked me to accompany him to see my father whom (he said) was sick at the hospital where he had been taken the day before. Actually my father had died, but Pudlo didn't want to say that to me.)


 Pervez, married to Askara
        Children:  Amir, Samia 

* Pozy's birthday was very close to mine. We became very great friends and remained so until his untimely death. He was brave, much like his brother. He died earlier, though. He laughed a lot. Apart from his own business, his skills were in cars, and guns. Strangely none of these were interests of mine, other than his interests in boats and my being in the Merchant Navy :)

(I remember that when I was staying in his room in Lahore he pulled out a gun and shot at the curtain, thinking someone was trying to enter the house. Actually the curtain had been pulled over an open window and the air had blown the curtain. I always teased him saying he could have killed someone … and he always laughed and said "Yār, it was only a curtain").

Rukhsana, married to Iqbal Talib
        Children: Iram, Saman, Aman, Danish

* Rukhsana was absolutely wonderful as a child. I remember she was learning dancing at that time. I spent a lot of my time with her and her siblings.

Mahnaz, married to Hafiz Pasha
        Children: Waris, Mehreen, Aadil, Omair

• Mahnaz - or Nazo, as we all call her - is someone we all are extremely fond of. She brings us all together. Keeps in touch with everyone. Been awfully ill with all sorts of problems … but is happy and always available for anything one wants. May she live long.

Nazo (I just adore this picture)
Appi Jania's Children

Suhail, married to Shahina
        Children: Ishma, Nida

* Suhail has been a great nephew of mine. Very loving. And his wife, Shahina, is wonderful (and has a lovely voice!). — He runs businesses that I know nothing about, but they are successful :)

Samina, married to Asif Kheiri
       Children: Saqib, Adeel

* Once a wonderful little sister … but she has changed from a Rakhi Bandhan Bahen, to a disappearance that I fail to understand! But I do keep wondering!!! I did meet her at her second son's wedding. Asif I had met many times. Good man. They live in USA.

Kausar, married to Iqbal
       Children: Adnan, Arsalan

* Extremely affectionate and very well behaved. Lives in USA.

Ijlal, married to Arshi
       Children: Maham, Insiya

* Great kid … but we meet very little since he has started living outside.

Kausi, Ijji, Sallu, Samina

(The Third Generation will be in a much later post)

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