It is the 14th of August, the Independence Day for Pakistan. Last year I wrote a post that when I read now sounds more like ramblings than anything else. But probably all I write here appears so after some time has passed.
This year has been particularly difficult for Pakistanis, but I still wish to celebrate Pakistan and my Pakistaniat. Adil one upped me by remembering this verse today that very aptly relays what I am thinking:
mauj baRhay kay aanDhi aa-aye, diya jala-aye rakhna hai
ghar ki khatir sau dukh jhailaiN, ghar tou aakir appna hai
I am copying below here a small para that I wrote for a post on Pakistaniat.com. I urge you to read that original post at ATP to see what some good friends and I are thinking this day. In the meantime, Bilal Zuberi kee taraf sey tamam Pakistani bhaiyyon aur behnoun ko Jashn-e-Azaadi Mubarak Ho!
Bilal Zuberi: For me – the one thing that I will always remember on 14th of August is how each year my entire family worked together to raise a large flag on our house in the evening of the 13th.
One 13th of August, many many years ago, our dad brought all of us kids together and told us a story. He told us how he was a young boy at the time of independence and how his mother stitched a Pakistani flag for him so he could go out and demonstrate with the Muslim League. He had proudly raised it at the demonstration despite being in a city that had seen its fair share of Hindu-Muslim riots. Then he continued on to teach us what the different colors and the chaand sitaara on the Pakistani flag represented. Finally my mom followed the tradition and stitched a large flag from green and white cloth for us kids to put up on our house. It was the largest flag at that time in our mohalla! and we proudly raised it on our house every year until I left for the US .
Even now we talk about it and what it meant for the entire family to raise the flag together. When I saw this picture, I felt it could almost be myself and my brother on our roof, trying to tie the flag to our TV antenna. Given what is going on in Pakistan, I almost feel I need to be back there again, to raise a giant green and white flag to show that nothing can bind us together more than our common nationality.