Reflections on progressive Pakistan: A heartfelt apology to the motherland

By reaching out with open hands, let us endeavor to restore what has been taken away from our fellow citizens

My dear homeland, I am deeply sorry that you have to endure this pain year after year. I apologize that the purity symbolized by the white in you seems to have faded, while the darkness of strife and turmoil has spread its shadow over your vibrant green.

My heart shatters into countless pieces witnessing the transformation of your pristine white into crimson red, stained by the blood of the innocent. The anguish is unbearable as I witness the robbery of children's precious innocence, their fundamental rights cruelly stripped away.

The agony intensifies when I observe that justice often remains elusive for the oppressed and vulnerable, leaving a trail of despair and hopelessness in its wake.

I can fathom the mixed emotions you experienced every day of the celebration of power. Despite the opulence and vibrancy that adorn your anniversary, there is an underlying sorrow for the lives lost and the dreams shattered.

Just yesterday, a fellow member of our minority lost her life, a stark reminder of the challenges and perils faced by those who are not in the mainstream. Many others had to bid farewell to this nation, forced to leave behind their dreams and aspirations and give up hope by the end of August 16, 2023.

How can we expect them to celebrate a nation that seems to have failed them in their time of need?

I am overcome with apprehension that my own despair might drive me toward giving up on the dream of a better tomorrow. The darkness is closing in, and I fear that I might become someone I never wished to be. A HOPELESS. 

Yet, I wish to offer my apology before I am consumed by this darkness. Let this be a plea for change, a call to action. Together, let us strive to reclaim the essence of unity and hope that you represent.

May we transform the red of bloodshed into the red of passion for positive change?

 May the green of your landscapes extend its embrace to encompass every individual, regardless of their background?

By reaching out with open hands, let us endeavor to restore what has been taken away from our fellow citizens. Instead of isolating them as adversaries, let us embrace them as part of our own. Together, let us provide the support they need to thrive and to stand shoulder-to-shoulder with us. Jaranwala is waiting for us. 

Gathering around a shared table, let us revel in each other's company and celebrate our unity. With the flicker of hope that still remains within me, I believe in our collective power to enact change and to fulfill the dreams our ancestors fought for.

In unity, we can extend our arms to shield the victims, offering them a lifeline to survival. Let us express mutual remorse for any wrongs we have inflicted upon each other, and forge a new beginning based on empathy and cooperation.

As I extend my sincere apologies and envision a future illuminated by justice and concord, I hold onto the knowledge that this trying phase will eventually pass. Together, let us make strides towards the Pakistan our forebears aspired to create, a nation where every citizen can rejoice without reservations.

Let our hands reach across divides, carrying the torch of unity into the brighter times ahead.

The writer is a feminist and activist. She is passionate about sustainable development, gender equality and equity, and amplifying marginalized voices.

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