A cylinder explosion was not the main cause of the fire on Tezgam. My family was present at station when the train reached Multan.
We talked to dozens of passengers on board. They were all furious with the railway minister for claiming that a gas cylinder explosion was to blame for the tragedy.
One passenger said the railway minister should explain if what the minister was alleging was true, how could a fire caused by one cylinder explosion spread to three coaches within seconds?
We demand that the government conduct a transparent inquiry to ascertain what happened and ensure the tragedy is not repeated. It shoulder answer as to who should be held responsible for the death of 73 people in an explosion?
One fails to understand how railway authorities could allow passengers to carry gas cylinders and stoves on passenger trains.
Railway authorities must ensure safety rules.
Spying on students
Recently, the vice chancellor Pakistan’s top public sector medical university issued a notification declaring that a special committee had been established to review and analyse behaviour of students on social media, which includes their comments, likes/dislikes, posts and shares.
The vice chancellor also held a meeting in which he students that there were certain pages that promote vulgar and abusive material regarding policies of the university. He told them to communicate to their fellow students that anyone found ‘liking’ any post that maligns the reputation of the institution will be called for a disciplinary meeting. He also asked them to advise students to remove their likes, shares, and comments on these posts to save themselves.
It is clear as daylight that this notification, under the pretext of the ‘misuse’ of social media, is designed to spy on students, censor their expression, and persecute those who dare to speak against the powers that be.
The students admitted to this university are arguably the best minds we have managed to produce through an inhumane and dreadful educational system. I have found my peers and my seniors to be exceptionally intelligent when it comes to their studies. I have interacted with most of them through the debating exercise in which they not only bear the burdens of an excessively difficult medical study, but also strive for excellence in the field of debates for which their curriculum practically teaches them nothing at all. I remember that two girls from the institution managed to win almost all major debating competitions in the last few years despite bearing with the educational hardships that they constantly have to face. Such a level of endurance requires acknowledgement at the least, and representation as the appropriate.
If there is anyone who needs to have a say about how this university should be run, it is the students who make the institution what it is, and not just a bunch of professors who intimidate students for speaking out.
If the administration thinks that by passing these notifications, they can silence their students, they must be reminded that they have allies now, who will speak for them and not rest until they are duly granted their fundamental right to criticise and be represented.
For many years, millions of Pakistanis have been forced to fly foreign airlines because of no PIA flights are available. These foreign airlines — Emirates, Qatar Airways, Gulf Air, Thai Airways and the rest — give rough treatment to Pakistanis at airport.
They make them walk to the furthest corners of huge airports, send them by bus to the aircraft, and short-change them once they are on board. Yet it is through these very millions of Pakistani passengers that the foreign airlines are making huge profits.
In the good old days, PIA flights were frequent and their service was the best. The PIA staff today is the most courteous of all airlines’ hosts but the top management is poor.
Prime Minister Imran Khan must initiate accountability of the PIA management and put the airline back on its feet. The prime minister must select a new team to make it the airline profitable.
As a resident of Islamabad, I reject all protesters coming from out of the city. We don’t need you. Go away and stay there.
This culture of bringing herds to Islamabad has to stop. Every day I see the roads of Islamabad full of people travelling to earn a living and these outsiders are hurting every one of us. The roads are empty.
If you can’t create jobs then at least don’t put people who are employed out of work.