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Date Posted: 06:30:17 01/23/05 Sun
Author: JAVED

By Javed - 05 November 2003

Recently a few letters in this esteem have appeared concerning Islamabad graveyard. The writers say graveyard is covered with four to five feet high thorny bushes leaving no trace of footpaths leading to graves so much so that it is not possible to locate the graves of dear ones.

I have not ever been to Islamabad graveyard but I am sure same situation prevails every where. With the general decline in moral values even graveyards have been turned into a source of income. I have grave of a dear one in Azizabad graveyard in Karachi since mid 70s. It was a clean graveyard. I used to visit weekly, clean the my dear one’s grave as well as those within a little radius. Growth of thorny stray bushes is a natural phenomena. I observed with the passage of time the little older areas of graveyard are neglected deliberately by graveyard staff and no maintenance is done. More particularly they deliberately allow thorny bushes to grow haywire making it unable to reach a grave. Thus forcing people to “hire” the services of graveyard staff to cut these bushes. I used to take with me a small axe in my hand riding cycle. Those were calm days in Karachi and there was no harm in taking an axe in the hand. Came mid 80s when law and order situation started changing and since late 80s it became highly risky to take an axe in the hand passing through roads and streets to reach graveyard.

Since 1985 to till 2000 I addressed repeatedly wherever I could like Municipality, ministers, governors, councilors etc requesting that some system may be adopted where staff properly cuts these thorny jungle bushes but never ever got any response. Even I do remember if my memories are not misguiding me now in this old age I also addressed the Sindh Ombudsman in those days.

These thorny bushes are deliberate as it gives ample income to those who sell water buckets etc in the graveyards and in effect are the graveyard staff.

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