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LOOT SALE

By 'Qari Mansoor Ahmad'

At the fag end of winter, for the disposal of sweaters,jersyes, socks and warm clothes attractive banners and posters can be seen in markets and on round about of the city. In the beginning when this trend started, the word 'sale' was enough. Later such month-watering terms such as 'Loot Sale', 'Dhamaka Sale', 'grand sale', 'completely free', made their appearance. Whether there is any profit in it or not from the business point of view, we leave that to the shop keepers, but these advertisements do tempt one to go on a looting spree. Thus it is that inspite of returning home with empty pockets, the buyer is feels exultant that he got everything for free.

From the loot sale of out of season stock it has now come down to the loot | sale of human beings. In the last fifty years an aggregate of 19 million 37 1 thousand people have been killed but the real loot sale is now being held of the Muslims. Kill as many as you like, whenever you like, wherever you like-no regrets nor compunction, no numbers nor record, no investigations J nor accountability, nor shame nor tears. In fact the killer gloats over the fact 1 that everything was for free.

Nearly half a century ago, the West, thinking that after practicing it for ages these people will now go on walking with head down-bent, divided them in groups and loose the chains. But strange people are these. As soon as they got out of their cages, flapped their wings and took off for home unaware of the fact that the door of the smaller cage had been opened only, I hat there still exists an invisible net overhead, and that the hunter still had the f bow and arrow in his hand. At the mere suspicion that they still possess the power of flight bombs have started being dropped blindly on them. Now there are heaps of corpses everywhere. The words 'scores' and 'hundreds' have lost their meaning. Where it has just begun the numbers run into thousands, where skill has been acquired, millions. It was an honour to die at the hands of America too. It's a huge country, an atomic power and the weapons it possesses are not very ordinary of cheap at that. There are Daisy Cutter and Thermo barak bombs the Cruise missiles and the B-52 and F-16 jets and the colour of the enemy's skin is white too. But this wasn't a loot sale by any means for all the money got spent. The loot sale is being held in India now. The killers are of all hues and colours, shapes and sizes. The weapons—knives, daggers, sticks and clubs. Dancing the 'bhangra' and 'luddi1, no one to question, no one to answer. For after all it was a loot sale, I wasn't it?

To avoid being called greedy, a blind hafiz sahib used to take his student with him whenever he was invited to a meal. The code which had been agreed upon was that until the table cloth was placed on the ground and the dishes laid, hafiz sahib, with down-cast eyes would continue to sway softly from side to side. As soon as the first guest reached for the food, the student would poke him once with his elbow. Were the guests to become greedy and start emptying the dishes fast, he would nudge him twice. And if things came to such a pass that the guests started pouring 'dahi' into their glasses and making 'lassi' out of it gulped it down in one go and the attendants surrounded the 'dastar khawan', it was necessary to touch him thrice. Hafiz sahib would then make short work of it. Once it so happened that all the dishes had not yet been placed on the 'dastar-khawan'. While changing sides, the student's elbow mistakenly touched hafiz ji. 'Bismillah.....said hafiz sahib loudly and started eating. The other guests raised their eyebrows. Flustered, the student poked him twice. Hafiz sahib thought that it seems as if there is need for haste to-day. He began using both his hands. Out of his wits now, the students shook him by the hand. 'Oh I see. It's time for looting now', said hafiz sahib and taking out a shopping bag from his pocket quickly emptied the chicken curry and rice dish in it, gulped down the 'dahi' in one go and took off as fast as his legs could carry him.

The American operations have given India to understand the same thing. 'It is jime to begin looting now, so why would we be left behind.' So knives and axes are now being used freely. Five hundred the first day, nine hundred on the second, fifteen hundred on the third and two thousand five hundred today. Those who are missing are naturally un accounted for. The rest is just fine. Covered in garlands, the hajis are arriving; the nuTalilm made their agents are counting riyals. The govt. having taken its share is paying the American soldiers their salaries. Because of Muharram, Basant might has been postponed in some cities. The Spring festival goes on. Hanging out of the flower-decked bride-groom's car, video films are being made; wedding halls are doing roaring business; people are dancing the 'dhammaal',....suddenly a foolish man asked—had so many Hindus been killed in Pakistan, would India have held such celebrations? And had half the number of Christians been killed would the world have been remained untouched by a storm? The innocent doesn't evenknow that in-season goods are adorned and decorated and placed in show-cases while the out-of-season things are put on -sale. So a loot sale of Muslims is going on not of Christians. Jews or Hindus.


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