Children in schools around the globe excitedly prepare for Father’s Day with messy, colorful postcards and a whole lots of love. Teenagers take out their stash of pocket money and hurry to the nearest mall for the perfect present. Adults just feel warm inside and thank God for giving them a father who is still alive and well. Fathers themselves feel an overwhelming feeling of pride and gratitude as they wake up to a day that is theirs to celebrate.
That is the perfect Father’s Day, in some fortunate corner of the world.
Quaid-e-Azam was also a father; a founding father of an entire nation. He also had similar feelings of pride on the day Pakistan was born. Even after his death, he deserved all the love and respect from his legacy – his people – his country. What he got instead, was a whole lot of disrespect showered with blood and agony. What he got instead, was destruction of his beloved sanctuary in Ziarat (Balochistan), one day before the much celebrated Father’s Day. The historical refuge where he lived on and off during his life, amongst the glorious juniper trees, was his gruesome gift from his children.
Sadly, father’s day celebrations had just begun. More bloody surprises were in store for a man who wasn’t even allowed to rest peacefully in death. A few hours after the Ziarat tragedy, fourteen female university students were killed in Balochistan from a ruthless blast followed by another blast where the culprits laid siege to the Bolan Medical Complex. More presents for the father all carefully wrapped in horror and disbelief.
I began this post with scorn and hate. I thought I would be able to vent out my anger. I was wrong. No amount of contempt for the attacks can make a difference here. No amount of shallow words of comfort can mend the broken heart of a father. There is a limit to torture a father can bear. There is a thin line between what a father can or cannot forgive his unruly children for. I believe this time, there is no forgiveness. There are only weeping junipers and a battered heart.
Sad Father’s Day to you all.