Farewell…

It all came to an end. I never thought it would all end so unceremoniously.

There’s nothing in my life to which I can look back and say that this place has taught me so much except for the time that I have spent at KU. While we were in our first year, one of the teachers there told us that after four years of University, you will be what your friends are right now, so choose your friends very carefully. And friends… I’m so glad I never had to choose, Allah ST blessed me with the best of friends, friends that always stood by me in tough times, friends who accepted me, friends who made my faith stronger and never led me astray. Alhamdolillah. They surely are blessings from Allah and I can’t thank Him enough.

The time that I’ve spent in KU will always be the most memorable. The best thing about it was you never felt unwelcomed anywhere. Once a teacher said that in KU, the nexus between the students and the teachers is never based on money. And I felt it strongly. Most of us who were interested in Philosophy and didn’t have it as a minor used to go and attend the classes and the teachers never complained, nor they let us out. Not to mention that we were mostly found in the classes and sesssions in the IR department, and this teacher always welcomed us. Not to mention teachers of our own department. We used to sit in their classes when they taught others as well. We even went to see them later to talk about other books and stuff that we have come across. Last semester, I remember how we asked help from other teachers for books and articles other than our supervisers and they were more than eager to help us out, never said no to lending us their books and sharing their knowledge, views,opinions and articles with us.

These teachers wrought changes in me. And they have given me so much that I don’t think I would ever be able to thank them or repay them. These teachers and their selflessness and their humility taught us more than whatever that was in the books. They became our role models, people with beautiful souls who taught us how we should live our lives. They taught us that our lives should have a purpose and our actions should have a positive impact on our afterlives. These people taught us never to accept things at their face value and look for deeper meaning in things. And these people taught us that we have our own tradition and we don’t need to borrow it from the outside. They have taught us soo much that I don’t think I could do justice to everything they did.

KU has become an organ for me. It’s certainly is hard to detach it from your being. I think I never would have learnt so much if I were in an Engineering University or Med School or some Business School. KU even gives you a free crisis management traning as well – Clashes! I know these are bad but the place prepares you for real life.

Yesterday was my last exam of the first semester of my fifth year at KU.  I have my masters degree and I thought I can spend some more time there but that would coem to an end so quickly, I could never have imagined that. Not going back … it feels awfully sad. But the teachers, whom I respect the way I respect my father, the teachers who are like father figures, have taught me to give priority to my family. Though it’s sad leaving KU, the teachers, the friends, etc., I know whatever that I am going to do next is more important, and this is what they have prepared me for.

Campus Security

On Monday, following a clash between two student political groups, Silver Jubilee gate was closed as always. The staff, students or the teachers, who come via their own cars use other gates to get out of the premises as a rule. But a professor from the applied Chemistry department tried going out from the Silver Jubilee gate and had a clash with the rangers which resulted in a plaster on the arm of the professor and a fractured finger of one of the rangers. The whole issue has been propagated soo much that the teachers and journalist are now trying to get rid of Rangers from the university premises.

Now the inside news, which we accidentally got access to, is that the Professor is politically inclined and this might be the agenda of some forces working behind him that could lead the student affairs to disaster. This would definitely lead to making the campus as it was during the nineties- battleground.

Karachi University, huge as it is, does face problems like gunpoint snatching of mobile phones, money and other crimes where the rangers are not to be seen. A couple of months back, a friend of mine was shown a gun by a dude, and he asked her to give her belongings to him. Luckily the Ranger’s Jeep was right behind the dude and my friend smiled at him and went away and he couldn’t do anything. What would be the plight of the female students or even male students(who do not have any political backing) if Rangers were removed?! The clashes do take place even when there are Rangers, but Rangers confine those to a particular area, not letting the political student groups go raving the whole university. So, Rangers-less-ness in KU would lead to chaos, heightened criminal activities and no security for students.

Rangers might have been wrong in doing whatever they did. Or this is what media propagated. But it should be settled in a different way not by removing them from the campus. More than 50% of the students attending KU are female, I wish they consider that before making any decision.

Back to School

As I glanced at my poetry results, I almost fainted with relief. I didn’t do good in poetry and the only thing I was counting on was prayers. And seeing that I cleared that paper I knew my prayers and my parents and friends’ prayers were answered. Though I was quite disappointed by my result in Fiction exam, but I know for sure now it’s the grace of Allah that I stand where I stand and I pass because of Him. And I know when I raise my hands in prayers that they will be answered in one way or the other.

And I thank Allah for giving me the privilege of university education, the faith and imaan and most importantly to have made me a Muslim.

And with the faith that He will guide me through this year, would make me realize the shallowness of this world and would make clear the reality of the other world, I enter the gates of University again, praying to find light, hope and guidance.

Kartography…

The first few days of university, everyone seemed to brave through the coarse university schedule. We used to have a couple of classes in the morning then we’d wait till the afternoon for a couple more classes. In the beginning, I didn’t quite know how to utilize the faarigh time as it was all new for the students and teachers were testing their tempraments and abilities and all. So I decided to take one of my favourite books to university to read in between the classes.

This is how I got hooked up with N.A. She saw Kartpgraphy in my bag and screamed, “You’re reading this! OMG!”

“I’ve read it but I love it and I do read it time and again,” was rather my comment.

And then both of us narrated the best parts in the book and the dialogues and we discussed it. We still do. I don’t know what keeps me glued to it nor does she. But I read it whenever I need a kick to get into reading even though I know it by heart. ALmost. And N.A. doesn’t read it every month like me yet we talk about it sometimes.

So, it was Kartography that bonded us and then came alot of books that we’ve read or want to read. I still remember how she made me read The Alchemist and said it was amazing, and I didn’t like it that much. And she was disappointed! lol.

We’ve read a number of books, shared our views and even shared our books (this reminds me I still have your zero point with me.) The other day I was making a list of books that I’ll buy once my brother lands in Karachi, and I asked for her assistance. And thankyou for the name of Imam Ghazzali’s book! I really appreciate that.

Well… we have our differences in alot of things but I’ll always remember how Kartography bonded us. The bond of friendship is so that we do fight, argue and all but still in”our marrows of our marrows” we are the same! Thank you N.A., for everything and specially for your precious time and all the books!

Are We Going Tomorrow?

The succession of smses, MSN chats and phone calls that became a reason for not going to the university even today…

 FROM LAST NIGHT:

SMS from X :   Did anyone read DAWN(the newspaper), the part declaring that KU is off tomorrow? Y pointed it put but since I don’t have the paper, can someone please confirm for me?

SMS from Y:    So ppl is it off 2morro? Check DAWN plz

SMS from me to X and Y:    I can’t find it anywhere? Is it really there?

SMS from Y:   Sir syed uni says ku is off.

SMS from X:    Guys, i think we should wait and see what the news brings. Some teacher says nothing is official and i can’t reach the other teacher, been trying for hours. So we’ll see at 10?

MSN msg from me to N.A. :   Are we going tomorrow?!

Reply of N.A :   I don’t know. Did you get the smses from X. I think we should wait for the news.

ME : But what about Masood Sahab?! (the teacher who’s taking Fiction and Poetry classes nowadays)

LATE NIGHT SMS from X:   Since 8am is too late to inform some of you, we ARE going tomorrow and InshAllah we WILL have classes if we are there.

 FROM MORNING:

SMS from X:  Jamiat has a protest planned for today so please stay home.

SMS from N.A. : Are we going today?!

SMS from X: I heard this protest from Z and a  girl in first year who has a friend in Jamiatwarned her. So its pretty reliable. Go if you want. We aren’t.

SMS from X: If you ppl come by van, let me know if your drivers are coming.. That way I’ll spread the news. I’m not allowed to come either way.

SMS from X again: Final: classes at univ are slowly being cancelled one by one. It is not safe. There will probablybe a clash and riots. Stay home. stay safe. AH.

Then I called N.A. and we decided that there was no point in going while fasting if classes are being cancelled. We should and enjoy one more holiday.

Later in the morning N.A. called me and told me that one certain friend, who’s mobile phone is giving her troubles, didn’t get any of the above messages and she actually went there. And Masood Sahab obviously was very angry and now nomatter what anyone says, we have university tomorrow and we will have classes tomorrow. InshAllah. This semester is jinxed! lol.

SMS from X just now: No matter WHAT anyone says or hears, unless there’s a nuclear threat we ARE going tmw. Nothing happened today & we need to finish our course. That’s final.

To University and Back…

Last time when I stepped inside the university premises, it was monday (10th sept). I skipped my classes on Tuesday, and the classes were put off on wednesday and thursday because of the ongoing students’ week on the campus.

So, after one week when I stepped again inside the university gates, with the people from the administration checking my I.D. card and the Rangers and university guards standing in an upright position, I had this omenous feeling. But then there’s always a  huge number of rangers and guards after a clash and after what happened on Friday, this didn’t come as much of a surprise.

Our class was to begin at 9:20 am, and we were waiting for our teacher, when a student, belonging to a political party with a black band tied to his forearm, said that there wont be any classes for three days. Three days mourning period for those students who lost their lives on Friday. So, we came back home in order to avoid any mishap that might occur amid the security measures taken by the university administration.

This has not happened for the first time. Clashes inside university campus between certain political organizations are common. We see Rangers everywhere, they check our I.D. Cards regularly to ensure no infiltration is there, yet we see illegal immigrants everywhere blowing apart the peace of the very varsity we dwell in. But Firday was a shock to all the university students. A public bus carrying students was attacked right outside the university’s Silver Jubilee gate making matters worst. There were seven casualties, four of them being university students.

This has been the worst incident in two and half years of university life. Karachi University has always been famous for the students’ politcal parties’ clashes but it never went outside the gates of the campus. But now things have changed. Some students now even fear to take a  public bus to university. But when people of Karachi can brave the late ’80s and early ’90s and the recent may 12th mayhem, we hope that Allah will give us strenght to brave these dark times. InshAllah.