It will be unfair if we don’t appreciate the support of Sind Government in patronizing art and culture activities in the province of Sind especially in Karachi. Murad Ali Shah’s personal interest in art and cultural activities is the continuation of policies of Shaheed Benazir Bhutto who was very keen to spread old culture of Sind in the younger generation. It is considered a very positive step and gives message of love and peace to all living in Sind. Celebration of Sind culture day in first week of December 2018 in Pakistan and worldwide has been received well. Thousands of people getting together in great city of Karachi participated in huge number from all over Sind in traditional dresses made the event memorable
People living in Karachi are grateful to you for giving handsome amount to foster all type of cultural activities in Karachi Arts Council. Sind government has been extra kind for the special grant in raising Arts Council complex and now it gives a very decent look and that could not have been achieved without your contribution. Every year elections of Arts Council are held peacefully and you are witness that a particular group always fined it convenient to get re elected.
It was first time that a strong group under the name of Friends Forum emerged and decided to contest the elections and break the status quo as has been done at the national level. Although elections are always held democratically under strict supervision of Commissioner Karachi. But this time the things went out of control when the rival group was denied equal playing field and that appeared to be a pre planned event. In spite of valid reservations on the existing list of members and method of granting membership was under dispute even then opposition decided to participate in the recent elections held on 25 December 2018. How an honorable lady a famous poet Qandeel Jafri was attacked and mishandled in presence of Commissioner is now part of history. Inspire of all the provocations the opposite group did not react and kept protesting peacefully. The commissioner was kind enough to help the lady and provided her protection as the mob was all set to do more harm to her but luckily she escaped after being slapped by someone present there.
FIR has already been lodged, but so far nothing has moved, that is creating unrest in the minds of law abiding citizens who did not react to hooliganism and resorted to boy cot the elections after staging strong protest with the civil administration special thanks to Deputy Commissioner South who gave patient hearing and brought situation under control. Winning or losing elections is part of the game; opposition group has no personal enmity with the other group except for legitimate and lawful reservations. If they want the scrutiny of all the existing members, what is wrong with this demand? If the objection is on the procedure adopted on the selection of members then what is wrong with this demand? If the basic criterion of becoming member in Arts Council is violated, how on earth election result can be accepted? Beating up lady who stood for election demanded immediate suspension of polling but it was not done? Eligibility criteria have been violated how the elections can be termed as fair and transparent?
As reported in the media Chief Minister has been invited for oath taking ceremony but how CM could accept the invitation when elections have been controversial and FIR has been lodged against elected President, who keeps rotating his portfolio each year and is winning elections for the last 10 years as per amendments carried out suiting to his convenience . As long as proper scrutiny is not carried out CM may adopt a better way of appointing administrator to run the affairs of Arts Council until the decision of the case, and it will be in fairness that Chief Minister stays away from taking oath and not become party to proceedings, knowing well there has been dispute and serious irregularities in the election, should have avoided to be the chief guest to take oath from new members and enjoy benefits of non indulgence. In the words of poet Hazrat Shah Abdul Latif Bhitai of Sind prays for all humankind including Sind and says in his poetry.
SAEEM SADEEN KAREEN MATAY SIND SUKAR
DOST TU DILDAR ALAM SABH ABAAD KAREEN
The writer is a freelance journalist and defence Analyst.