When danger lurks

With the wedding season in full swing, news of twenty-seven deaths near D.G. Khan should give us all pause. I’ve always wondered about weddings held in tents – there is invariably only one narrow entrance/exit. With all the bright lights and temporary electrical work, it’s a wonder more of them don’t go up in flames.

Then on Saturday I was driving past the wedding hall across Park Towers when I saw the most awful scene – right outside the hall, in the midst of hundreds people and cars, a speeding car had flipped onto its roof. Speeding is bad enough – but outside a wedding hall, where it was barely possible to squeeze my car through at 20 km/h, that’s criminal.

And then yesterday five people from Boat Basin died of alcohol poisoning when they drank poisonous liquor – probably because branded liquor is outside the reach of the ordinary man.

All needless deaths and accidents. 2007 is nearly upon us, but we’re still struggling to enter the 20th century first.

25 Comments so far

  1. MB (unregistered) on December 19th, 2006 @ 1:38 pm

    I guess the last line itself, is enough to show an overall picture :
    ” we’re still struggling to enter the 20th century first “


  2. Nomi (unregistered) on December 19th, 2006 @ 2:15 pm

    Cy, its a blessing that ordinary people are spared the luxury of having access to branded liquor. We have enough ruccus already with |EXTRA-ordinary people who HAVE access to braded liquor. Probably the overspeeding guy outside the wedding tent was one such EXTRA-ordinary person.


  3. verysmart (unregistered) on December 19th, 2006 @ 2:17 pm

    CY:”And then yesterday five people from Boat Basin died of alcohol poisoning when they drank poisonous liquor – probably because branded liquor is outside the reach of the ordinary man.

    All needless deaths and accidents. 2007 is nearly upon us, but we’re still struggling to enter the 20th century first.”

    Whats the point of this????

    So you guys are making a point that we shall enter in the 21st century as drunks?

    Howcome modernization is all of a sudden being tied with consumption of alcohol?? whats next? Marijuana, Cocane? (Marijuana being legal in many european countries already)


  4. verysmart (unregistered) on December 19th, 2006 @ 2:18 pm

    @NOMI…. brilliantly said


  5. Cy (unregistered) on December 19th, 2006 @ 2:20 pm

    Nomi: It takes a perverse sense of logic to regard the death of five people as a “blessing”.


  6. nomi (unregistered) on December 19th, 2006 @ 3:06 pm

    The secret to avert these tragic deaths is not to provide them with branded liquor but to discourage liquor consumption altogether.
    Point to note is that two of the deceased were wife and husband which points towards the gradual erosion of social fabric. One can imagine that in an Islamic society like ours this destruction of moral values is far more tragic than the actual deaths.


  7. Sa'ad (unregistered) on December 19th, 2006 @ 3:39 pm

    Pic here:
    http://img142.imageshack.us/img142/8158/app0817karachi1fh3.jpg

    I too was wondering how he managed to park that car in such a cute manner. Driver must have seen a little too many james bond movies.


  8. mansoor (unregistered) on December 19th, 2006 @ 5:44 pm

    sa’ad: yea, one too many!

    verysmart: the point was on the deaths of the five people, due to poisonous supply. If they choose to consume alcohol, that is their prerogrative, however, being supplied with poison rather than what you paid for is truly criminal. The point was on the SUPPLY and not on the CONSUMPTION.

    cy: the last line is so true :(


  9. nomi (unregistered) on December 19th, 2006 @ 6:17 pm

    Mansoor: imagine a situation, where a person ‘A’ pays to hire a professional assassin (kiraye ka qatil)to kill ‘B’, but that assassin cheats ‘A’ and dosesn’t kill ‘B’. Who is the TRULY CRIMINAL then? The guy who hired the assassin or the assassin himself.
    I believe both are criminal.


  10. verysmart (unregistered) on December 19th, 2006 @ 7:21 pm

    Desi alcohol is dangerous and pakistan is the not the only country where it has happend. Even in those countries where Alcohol consumption is legal (India, Thailand, Philipines, many African republics) these news are a common sight.

    So the hypothesis of any connections between deaths due to desi sharaab and legitimizing the consumption of alcohol does not hold any ground at all.

    Cy must have studied basic economics, and its a known economic problem usually cited (as a europe wide debate) that even if the consumption of marijuana is declared legal, its price will only fall very slightly; although the lack of current supplies will be irradicated and supplies will increase but it will be balanced by the enourmous demands and the price equilibrium will remain the same.

    If we apply the same scenario for Pakistani consumption of alcohol, I am sure we will end up at the same conclusion…. its not politics or religion, its plain economics!

    However I am sad at the losss of lives


  11. Sufi (unregistered) on December 19th, 2006 @ 8:36 pm

    Cy, I have to disagree with you here. I have been to at least 300 wedding functions, and I have never seen any accident happen, Alhumdulillah. Accidents do happen. For example, lets talk about airplanes, or even better Space Shuttle’s, technology doesn’t get any better than that.

    On February 1, 2003, Columbia disintegrated during re-entry over Texas, on its 28th mission; all seven crew members aboard perished.

    What would you call that? “struggling to enter the 20th century first.” Certainly not. Accidents can happen anywhere.

    That driver who was returning from the premier of Casino Royale is his personal fault and not the society’s. Alcohol poisoning as Verysmart mentioned is not specific to Pakistan.

    Mansoor: If they choose to consume alcohol, that is their prerogrative ..
    If they chose to live in a country, they should live by the rules & regulations of the country. It is their right to consume alcohol in other parts of the world where the trade is legal but not in Pakistan.


  12. Cy (unregistered) on December 19th, 2006 @ 11:00 pm

    Nomi: If killing another person is the same as consuming alcohol … nevermind.

    Littlesmart: You prove time and again that a little knowledge is a dangerous thing.

    IllusionFS: It’s a hard question of risk assessment – space travel is very dangerous. A wedding celebration should not be very dangerous. It’s only dangerous because we don’t pay attention to safety. I think it’s unacceptable if a *single* person dies at a wedding, especially when all that’s required is to make sure that there is an emergency exit.


  13. verysmart (unregistered) on December 20th, 2006 @ 12:09 am

    CY: and yet not once you have been able to prove me wrong…. hmm i suggest you you shall revist some old books .. and yes most important of all… superiority complex, really dude, get out of it :)


  14. verysmart (unregistered) on December 20th, 2006 @ 1:03 am

    Global Status Report on Alcohol 2004 by World Health Organization… social, Economical and health effects

    http://www.who.int/substance_abuse/publications/global_status_report_2004_overview.pdf

    a gift from someone who knows little to someone who knows nothing…


  15. Cy (unregistered) on December 20th, 2006 @ 1:26 am

    Littlesmart: You should work for Bush – it seems reality distortion is your kinda thing. BTW about the nonsensical rubbish about marijuana proved three things:

    1. you don’t know the first thing about marijuana production;
    2. you really don’t know anything about alcohol pricing (hint: it’s heavily taxed in the countries you mentioned); and
    3. debating with you is pointless (refer to what I said in my first post).

    What you call a superiority complex is actually just a fact complex, i.e. I think facts are important to debates.


  16. verysmart (unregistered) on December 20th, 2006 @ 10:26 am

    well CY,
    by editing my comments and not displaying my replies, you have proven yourself to be a very insecure man who cant handle any disgreement.

    The problem i have cited in the earlier post regarding marijuana is not developed by me.. its a known economic problem and is proposed by Leeds Economics Group, all EU universities discuss it in their business courses.

    This leaves one person who knows nothing in this discussion… and its not me dear.

    I was begining to think that you are a reasonable person, but you have continued to disappoint me.


  17. verysmart (unregistered) on December 20th, 2006 @ 10:30 am

    Global Status Report on Alcohol 2004, by World Health Organization

    http://www.who.int/substance_abuse/publications/global_status_report_2004_overview.pdf

    The report discusses Social, Economic and Health costs and disasters, worldwide.

    A gift from someone who knows little, to sombody who knows nothing at all.


  18. ash (unregistered) on December 20th, 2006 @ 10:58 am

    Most deaths are needless. And in Pakistan there are much bigger killers than number 2 alchohol or even crazy driving much less wedding tents.
    Clean water, immunization and basic emergency responses would help pull us into the current century, we are not going to get there by legalizing alchohol.
    At this point in our society it would be a bad idea to legalize alchohol and i dont mean that as a religious objection but as a social saftey one. Also I disagree with legalizing marijuana for the same reasons people as a whole can NOT be trusted to not drive etc under the influence.
    Making these things illegal doesnt 100% prevent that but it certainly cuts it down.


  19. Pari (unregistered) on December 20th, 2006 @ 5:23 pm

    If liquor is a common in Karachi then why not make it available locally. That way getting bad one will be eliminated and therefore no more liquor realted death and misery.


  20. Cy (unregistered) on December 20th, 2006 @ 5:34 pm

    Littlesmart: I haven’t edited your comments or held back any replies. I’d be happy to read what the Leeds Economic Group has to say on the subject – alas, google seems to have never heard of them. Maybe you can supply a link?


  21. ash (unregistered) on December 21st, 2006 @ 12:02 am

    People do die of moonshine alchohol in other countries, India for e.g, where alchohol is legal. Monnshine is cheaper than anything else thats the issue.
    Also like I said people drink anyway but our drunk driving fatalities would be off the scale if liqour was legal. There is not enough civic/common sense to trust otherwise.


  22. Pari (unregistered) on December 21st, 2006 @ 1:18 am

    Laws like DUI of alchol can be enforced. If drinking becomes legal then people will not rely on unreliable sources to drink and have fun.


  23. ash (unregistered) on December 21st, 2006 @ 1:24 am

    hey pari,
    there is some thing to what you say, but i just cant think of a single law in pakistan that is actually enforced. On the other hand we are surrounded by evidence that all pakistani’s think they are above the law.
    Even in law abiding regulated societies drunk driving is a huge health hazard. I just dont think we can afford it on top of all our other problems.


  24. Pari (unregistered) on December 21st, 2006 @ 5:09 pm

    Ash,

    Agreed. But somebody has to start somewhere. If we keep thinking like that then we will never achieve anything and will keep complaining about it all our life.


  25. verysmart (unregistered) on December 21st, 2006 @ 11:51 pm

    Cy:
    I should have realized that a person having skewed knowledge will end up searching about Leeds Economics Group on google….

    Leeds Economics Group is a group of british economists, who formed a think tank advising the government and EU on economic issues.

    they are well known in the business circles, however being comprised mainly on old univeristy teachers, i guess they have never relied upon a website to introduce themselves. They actually dont need to do so, they are very wel respected.



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