#RIP – Tribute to Hassam , Friend and Human Rights Activist from Pakistan


aisha

Life partner of my first friend  from  Pakistan is no more

As I opened the Facebook page of Aisha  Gazdar to share

Neela  Bhagwat’ s  classical rendition of Faiz poem, “Bol”

As her page slowly opened, I wondered why

She had  removed her Profile Pic

and then

I felt a bolt from blue , I was numb, with a blank stare

The news stared at me

Rights activist Hassam Qadir no more amongst us, He was just 44

My Eyes closed, fervently wishing  this to be a bad dream.

 

I went to a Flashback

My friendship with  Pakistan began with  Aisha in 2000

My  Myths about  Pakistan started crumbling ,

thanks to our friendship ,

which happened as we met at a neutral ground in London

We both were Chevening  Scholars studying Human Rights

 

Our friendship beyond borders ripened

She came to India to make a film on women rights and CEDAW

I was her coordinator in India   and loved every bit of it

Hassam  also came with her in 2005,

My first reaction was WOW

This is a Marc Zuber look- alike from Pakistan

Kumbh ke bichade bhai ke samaan

 

His first morning in Mumbai,

This is what we see

He is standing in the Kitchen making his own Tea

Broad shoulders and  a broader smile

Behind the Robust Masculine exterior

Lay a  Gender Sensitive Man,within

 

A human rights activist and Lawyer

Hassam

was a Passionate Fighter

 Aisha , the most soft spoken person I have evermet

is a carnation of ‘  Tameez and Tehzeeb.”

Hassam  was a  True Punjabi from Lahore   in every sense of word

His jokes and crackling laughter, still echoes

He  forgot his Black Sandals

Every time I talked with  Aisha and him

We laughed and said

‘Tuhade chittar taan aithe hi reg gaye, ki kariye “

( Your sandals are still here, what to do ? )

He once jokingly said- Sambhal ke rakhna  Amitabh Bachchan na lae jaye !!

( Please take care Amitabh Bachchan does not take them !!)

 

 Left behind Memories , Jokes,  Vaccum

and yes

A pair of large sandals

sitting in a drawer

with hopeless anticipation ……

A pair of large sandals

befitting a  towering personality

Remains…………………………………………………………waiting forever

2013-07-01 21.58.53

 

8 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Niti Saxena
    Jul 02, 2013 @ 11:31:22

    very beautifully put kamayani…

    Reply

  2. Trackback: Tribute to Hassam , Friend and Human Rights Activist from Pakistan | Journeys to democracy
  3. Amarinder Singh
    Jul 03, 2013 @ 08:57:16

    RIP Hassam…a befitting tribute indeed for a gentleman

    Reply

  4. Ramnik Mohan
    Jul 03, 2013 @ 10:19:03

    Touching. Soul-stirring. Befitting.

    Reply

  5. Syed Faisal Shah
    Jul 03, 2013 @ 15:02:19

    mAy eW rESt iN pEaCe . . . amEEn😦

    Reply

  6. Trackback: Kractivism » Blog Archive » Pak docs save Thane man after mid-air heart attack #goodnews
  7. Trackback: » An Indian Romeo disappears while seeking his Pakistani Juliet - Kractivism
  8. Charanjeet Singh
    Aug 18, 2013 @ 13:21:56

    To,

    The Editor,

    Discrimination with me in Dubai (A serious issue for Human rights Association)
    UAE Withhold my original medical reports of suspected tuberculosis.
    Brutal law of deportation on an assumption based T.B scar in United Arab Emirates.

    Respected Sir,

    Let me introduce myself. My name is CHARANJEET SINGH, an Indian national. Former resident and an Ex-Banker in Dubai..Year 2003 to 2006 I was working in India in a multi national bank. And since April 2006 to October 2011 working in U.A.E without any issue in my health..

    3rd March 2013, I came back to Dubai and joined a new job in a law firm in D.I.F.C. (Dubai International Financial Centre), On 4th March 2013, i appeared for medical test at D.I.F.C.
    18 days later i.e. on 22nd March 2013 at Al Muhaisna medical centre that comes under D.H.A (Dubai Health Authority) suspected that i have old T.B and I was deported immediately. Countless others are getting deported just due to a scar in their lungs.

    Neither I, while working and staying in my home country or Dubai, nor my parents had any kind of T.B infection in their lifetime.

    To prove myself I have already done skin test (Mantoux) twice and both times it was Negative.
    First time at Dubai when i noticed nurse writing on my medical card as negative, U.A.E did not issue me any report so that I can prove you my test reports nor they give it to anyone from any country and second test at A.I.I.M.S.
    I went to A.I.I.M.S (All India Institute of Medical Sciences) hospital at New Delhi and done all my checkups i.e. Skin test (Mantoux), Chest x-ray, Blood test, 3 times Sputum test and a Chest C.T Scan too on special advise by senior doctor to have a close look at the scar.

    D.H.A does guess work on T.B on the basis of mere x.ray film. Telling you the fact as it is.

    Based on my test reports, A.I.I.M.S issued me the Certificate stating that I do not have any active T.B. Senior doctors (A.I.I.M.S) asked me why did they deported you when there is no sign of T.B in our body??

    I really felt humiliation from U.A.E and felt depressed about this brutal and outdated law of deporting the patients just like a prisoner after he completes his punishment. I never expected this kind of behavior from U.A.E as happened with me.

    D.H.A was not ready to give me anything about my sickness in written. Why it was concealed from me??? What does this reflect?

    Present circumstances reminds me the malpractices of untouchability existed five decades ago, where in an individual was deliberately excluded from social interaction permanently.

    If U.A.E health authorities are really scared from heart to help these patients, at least they should not treat them like prisoners, deporting them back to their home country with permanent ban to enter U.A.E just because of a small suspected scar.
    This is the beginning of discrimination by gulf countries with expatriates excluding Arabs from gulf regions and i am sure the situation is going to be worse very soon if changes are not brought to their laws. I believe and I know it is discrimination.

    How about D.H.A staff? Will be they be deported permanently if they are infected with Active or Old T.B??

    http://www.thenational.ae/news/uae-news/health/deportation-laws-reform-lies-dormant clearly mentions this is absolute discrimination and it is major issue of Human rights.

    Assuming the current scenario in the future, i will never suggest 53% Indians of UAE’s total population to work and visit U.A.E whether they provide double pay of what your are getting in your home country.

    Finally, they will be the culprit if they still go and get deported in case they are sick with any kind of scar in their chest in the mid of their growing career just and just because of U.A.E’s adamant laws.

    These harmless scars may come on anyone’s body, will leave a huge impact on their career just and just because of U.A.E outdated laws. Today it’s my turn; tomorrow could be the ignoring readers from different countries.

    I have lost a lot because of their law, I wish from my core – no one should face the same in their life without any reason.

    I request U.A.E to remove sickness from U.A.E instead of removing the sick.

    “IT IS NOT JUSTICE IF IT IS NOT EQUAL”

    Your support will be highly appreciated to write something for this moral cause.

    (Charanjeet Singh)
    Email: singh.charanjeet@rocketmail.com
    Mob: +91 9560728263
    New Delhi [India]

    Reply

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