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A True Wellness Story – Journal


AFTER weeks of pessimism, this Friday brought good news in that the international terrorist financing and money laundering watchdog, the Financial Action Task Force (FATF), was finally pleased with the progress of Pakistan in compliance with a 34-point action plan.

This means that Pakistan has safely put some distance between international financial isolation and can be removed from the “grey list” now, where it has been languishing since the summer of 2018, with prospects of improving its credit rating. credit and to be perceived more favorably as a destination for foreign investment.

It would be premature to celebrate success at this stage, as Pakistan remains on the gray list until a visit and “on-site” inspection by a FATF team is conducted to physically verify that all points of action have been implemented. At this point, Islamabad will likely be removed from the gray list. Nevertheless, it is safe to say that a big step has been taken in the right direction.

Much of the work on compliance criteria was done during the PTI government’s tenure and it cannot be denied credit for it. Congratulations to him. Many of its leaders, notably Imran Khan, sent messages of complacency. Well Named.

In this moment of relief for Pakistan, for which everyone took credit, an irony got lost somewhere along the way.

Mr Khan did not share credit with anyone else, as his party did for the handling of the pandemic when it attributed the success to the National Command and Control Centre, NCOC, which is jointly led by Asad Umar and a serving three-star general.

Lily: “Many fathers” of FATF success

Likewise, in another example of how far things have strayed from the same page of harmony with the PTI, since the army’s ‘neutrality’ pledge, the army’s chief spokesman praised the efforts of the “Central Cell” at GHQ (under the DGMO) which “led the civil and military effort” to bear fruit.

In this moment of relief for Pakistan, for which everyone took credit, an irony got lost somewhere along the way. It was former Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif who first raised the issue of global isolation due to Pakistan’s support for militant groups during a meeting with former Lt. Gen. Rizwan Akhtar of DG ISI in 2016, two years before the country was put on the gray list. .

What followed the publication of a report on this meeting in Dawn is common knowledge. Nawaz Sharif’s government has been systematically destabilized and his removal orchestrated after warning of impending national calamity was seen as an affront by one of the country’s most irresponsible institutions.

‘[The] Notification is dismissed’ was added to the national political lexicon after the army’s chief spokesman reacted with these words in a public message to a government notification listing its action after a commission of inquiry into the Dawn history submitted its report to him.

This tweet represented the beginning of a period of retaliation. The former prime minister and his daughter were sentenced to prison terms and it was assured that the 2018 elections would see a different party form a government in Islamabad and Lahore.

For independent media, the nightmare began in 2016. The fate of the PML-N government was no different. This hellish nightmare continued into the spring of 2022, although same-page harmony ended somewhere in the fall of 2021. The polarization and divisions in the country have deepened alarmingly.

The TV stations and their pundits, the “senior analysts” with the lowest levels of intellect and logic follow the lines of their favorite party/political leader and seem to broadcast to the public from their respective silos.

If these divisions and the tone and tenor of the posts on TV stations make you smile for their often utterly ridiculous, partisan and juvenile political content, social media is another story where meanness seems to be a prerequisite for partisan commentators. . It literally takes a while to escalate or descend into galum galoch (abuse).

Social media is often seen as a platform where little good can be found or traded, other than a lot of bile and poison. But is this always the case? Allow me to share my own experience this week. On Friday, a Twitter friend of Karak in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa asked me to retweet his brother’s plea for help.

The brother is a schoolteacher whose two-year-old son has not been able to hear or speak since birth. He said he took his son to a specialist medical facility in Peshawar and they said the only thing that could allow the boy to hear (and then speak) was a cochlear implant.

The cost of the device and the surgery, the primary school teacher said, was 4 million rupees, far from what he could afford on his meager government salary. I retweeted the appeal to support the family.

A few hours later, a friend of mine messaged me and told me that she knew a businessman from Karachi who might be able to help as he has also helped such patients before. This Saturday morning, she messaged me to say that the businessman (philanthropist) said he would pay for the device and surgery costs.

My friend and the businessman from Karachi had a condition. That their names weren’t mentioned because they weren’t looking for any publicity. As I informed the family of the offer and conditioned it on the anonymity of the donor, their joy was immeasurable.

In my 38 years of journalism, few things have given my professional life more meaning than this. As I write these lines, all pessimism is far from my mind. At least for now. All I can feel are tears of gratitude and a welcome lump in my throat. Please join me in wishing the child the best. And more power to anonymous donors.

The writer is a former Dawn editor.
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Posted in Dawn, June 19, 2022