Despite Karachi having deep-rooted flaws, it is home to me. It’s the city that has taught me to give, to be generous with whatever little one has. It’s the city that generates the most philanthropic rupees in Pakistan, year after year. It’s the city that provides free Iftari to people on roads during Ramadan. It’s the city where at least ten cars will risk causing a gridlock traffic jam, just to see if the persons caught in a road accident are safe. It’s the city with the best antidote for any given bad day.
Given my attachment to the city, I have also been pushed to observe the underlying problems that it faces as a burgeoning metropolis. It has taught me the difference between poverty and disparity because the latter is a product of mismanagement of resources rather than real dearth of them. It has probed me to ask difficult questions, such as: will social initiatives like Sukoon ever make the same impact that government organizations can make? What is the nature of citizen responsibility? Despite the magnitude of the problems this city faces, we need to start somewhere. Real, sustainable change is often slow. Changing habits, beliefs and prevailing conditions requires a high degree of imagination and relentlessness of effort.
Seeing glimmers of hope and positive change around me, I have learnt that that sometimes it takes only person to start the process of change. One can make an impact if one wholeheartedly has the conviction to push one's beliefs forward in service of a greater vision. Sometimes, that is all one needs to begin and sustain the long but necessary process of positive change.
Karachi, I will keep loving you with all my heart.