Grave injustice

In Surah Al Imran, the Quran de­clares, “Every soul will taste death,” prompting contemplation on the tradition of reserving graves. It reflects profound trust in God, se­curing final resting places with the acknowledgment of life’s inevita­ble end. However, this practice rais­es questions about the uncertainty surrounding one’s demise.

Despite reserving graves, indi­viduals may overlook that their chosen resting place may not align with the course of their fate. The capricious nature of death chal­lenges the assumption that a pre­determined grave guarantees the fulfilment of one’s final journey. The unknown aspects of death beckon deep contemplation.

Legitimate grievances arise about the exorbitant cost of burial plots, exacerbated by a ‘graveyard mafia’ in cities like Karachi, reserv­ing and selling plots at exorbitant prices. This financial strain is se­vere for the less fortunate, adding an unfortunate layer of injustice to an already distressing situation.

The issue extends beyond Ka­rachi, infiltrating other urban ar­eas grappling with similar grave mafias. Reports of unscrupu­lous practices, such as unauthor­ised relocation of bodies to resell plots, underscore the severity of the problem. Old graveyards be­come targets for real estate ven­tures, eroding the sanctity of burial grounds.

In the face of alarming realities, urgent intervention by district ad­ministrations becomes impera­tive. A decisive crackdown on the grave land mafia is vital to curb these heinous crimes and alleviate the suffering of individuals, both in life and death. The government must ensure that land is exclusive­ly reserved for graves, providing a dignified and secure final resting place for all citizens.

Legal frameworks must be for­tified to shield graves from dese­cration. The Pakistan Penal Code (PPC) touches upon this issue, but more comprehensive laws are needed, imposing strict penalties, such as life imprisonment, on those involved in grave desecration and land mafia activities.

The government’s role extends beyond punitive measures. Proac­tive steps, such as the strategic al­location of land for graveyards and transparent processes, can alle­viate the burden on citizens. Bal­ancing cultural practices and safe­guarding against exploitation is paramount.

The juxtaposition of reserv­ing graves with the unpredict­able nature of death raises criti­cal questions about the societal and economic aspects of this practice. Government interven­tion, marked by a rigorous crack­down on grave mafias and clear le­gal frameworks, is imperative. By safeguarding the sanctity of burial grounds and addressing socio-eco­nomic disparities in funeral prac­tices, the government can ensure that individuals rest in peace, free from exploitation even in death. The dignity of death should not be compromised, and every ef­fort should be made to protect the sanctity of final resting places.



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