Monday, June 20

Deadly desperation

From poverty to family feuds, many reasons can be attributed to the killing of children by their own parents, but the government and society seem to be least bothered with the ever-increasing number of such cases.

Is it a saturnine disposition? No! It is the grossest crime against humanity. No doubt, it is a tragedy of the highest order where the sufferers are the children for none of their doings. The deaths of those, who have not seen life to its fullest, cause stirs in the society. Poverty, yes it is one of the biggest problems faced by the people of the third world countries, but neither any law nor any society allows any one to kill the innocent souls.
It seems that a gloomy and desperate home guard is sitting and brooding, every now and then. He plans, and makes up his mind either to poison, slaughter or shoot ‘innocent’ souls. What goes through his mind before he slits throats of his children – on whose births he was happy and felicitated by his kith and kin – no body knows. However, one thing is clear that death seems to be easy for him as compared to life. Several others, echo their saturnine dispositions, a gnawing sense that life itself was a disaster waiting to happen.
Most of the people think that this is all due to poverty, but this so-called justification is uncalled for by any standards. If one cannot feed his children, he must leave them alone instead of killing them after doing whatsoever is in his capacity. But they deem that their children will be suffering more after they are not around to take care of them. Definitely their desperation is partly augmented by the indifferent society. When there is no system in place, weaker individuals are apprehensive of the approaching days as they cannot fight the dangers off when the government machinery fails to protect them.
A few have the courage to take their own lives after killing their children, but a large majority of such psychopaths prefer to commit suicide alone. In 2004, 1343 persons – 400 women among them – availed the option of quitting this world voluntarily when the authorities-that-be were enjoying perks availed at the expense of the hapless people of this land of the pure. The Punjab – where millions were spent on advertising the embroidered slogan of ‘Education for all’ – topped among the four provinces while the second position went to Sindh, third to NWFP and Balochistan came last. It is believed that the respective chief ministers will not consider it their achievement.
Children are being used as a revenge tool when one parent is trying to trouble the other. In many cases, either of the parents tortures children to punish the other. Thus, they are perpetually under threat if they are born – without their choice – of mentally unstable parents.
No doubt, marriage is still considered to be a solution to so many problems; so people are getting married for wrong reasons. This leads to broken homes and shattered families ultimately. In Gujranwalla, a labourer Mobashir Ahmed killed his two daughters – three-year-old Malika and one-and-a-half-year-old Laiba – and his attempt to take his own life was foiled by his wife. Reason: He couldn’t meet expenses of his family after he was deported from Malaysia where he had gone to earn his livelihood after paying borrowed money to human smugglers. Lately, they were pestering him for the return of money. The question is: If he were not able to feed his family, why did he get married? To add to his problems, he fathered two daughters and borrowed money to be an illegal worker in a foreign land. Result: He not only brought tragedy to his family but he will suffer further for good.
If one is to enumerate reasons, these can be many; such as joblessness, financial worries, social discord, quarrels with spouses, family disputes, possession of children, suspicion over out-of-wedlock born children and instant angers. Sheer desperation when one is unable to change his dire state of affairs is the argument. In Multan, Muhammad Aslam poisoned his wife, six-year-old daughter Kausar and one-and-a-half-year-old son Shahzad. He was able to get rid of his poverty by taking poisonous pills while he was seen lying dead among his family members whereas his four-and-a-half-year-old son Sohail was found munching peanuts – obviously either awe-struck or oblivious of the tragedy. Reason: While the rest of the nation was celebrating Eid-ul-Azha, his children had nothing to eat. Aslam was jobless for over six months.
Interestingly, a study about the age of these people reveals that they fall between 18 to 35 years. They are not supposed to see dead ends in their lives especially at the young age, yet they do. But quite few of them are also evil-minded. For instance, Ahsan brought his annoyed wife home after reconciliation. But after three days, he killed his wife along with his three minor daughters. He fled never to appear again. Here our police need to do some thing, which is never ready to figure out the real causes and come up with some strategy to arrest such culprits and bring them to justice. It must shun the same hit and trial method as applied in other cases.
While living in this society, you never know when will this happen the next day – may be in your own vicinity, may be in your own family, may be among your acquaintances or may be you indulging in this ignoble act under some strong influence. The questions are: what are reasons behind this heinous crime? How can we stop them? Is it making the society sick? Are they acting as examples for the others? Where is the government or the society, which is always censuring individuals’ acts? There seems to be no end to it as long as people do not get enough to eat; the gap between the rich and the poor is not reduced; justice is not dispensed quickly and cheaply; people do not have enough to eat, and the government is not there to protect the weaker.

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