What will you do with our stories?

Last week I began my weekly counseling at the prison, by meeting with all the women inmates there. I was told their number is around 59-60, though I do not think that many came to meet me, in the open lawns, where we all met.

It was an unusual scenario for me – to sit and share with the ladies what my ‘job’ or presence in their midst meant. Most could not make sense of the word -counseling. For a moment I thought whether it was all a needless effort. There are a few non profits working among prison inmates, mine may be the third or fourth. I do not have a correct estimate of numbers yet. One of them is running a training program in several vocations- such as beauty culture, tailoring, adult education and even a creche for little children. On the whole the population is not very motivated, at least on a cursory glance.

As I sat there mid a whole lot of women from Haryana (the first time I was seeing so many together myself) I was just wondering in what language and expression to share the purpose of my work. Then I just began talking as we all sat in a gathering of nearly 35-40 women. I explained to them that I was here to share their lives with them and to help them cope better with the challenge of living life in a jail. I cannot imagine a bitter tragedy than imprisonment, and the seemingly futile effort of counseling those there.

Yet, not one to give up easily and wanting to make sense of life everywhere I feel I have to offer courage, the way I was offered courage by life and people in the years of my own suffering and solitude. I always believe that humans can be united in the idea of our shared or otherwise suffering- I have taken this from the Dalai Lama- the mindfulness that we all suffer, and that is the root of our common heritage as living beings.

To see so many people with hearts full of suffering, writ large on their faces is an experience of becoming humble, because you do not approach them with any solutions, nor wisdom, outcomes or legal advice- which they actually need. You just go empty handed, with a heart full of stories and ears willing to hear more. Your humility comes from the knowledge that possibly a whole lot of these in the jail are actually just innocent victims.

I spoke for awhile and then invited the women to say something if they would like to. Most did not, but some said they were trying to understand why I was there and what was the offer from me. Then one, who I find particularly bright and quite clear in her mind, asked me, “Madam I have understood why you will be here. You will hear our stories and may be note them somewhere. But will you keep our stories with yourself or will you do something more?

I thought may be I would do something later in research or write about the conditions of jails or how difficult it could be to live a life in jails for years altogether. But right now the agenda is only to work together with the women and understand what is happening in their lives. The truth is that nothing is happening- their lives are all frozen for now, and they live removed from the world in an artificial world of the prison, where nobody comes to meet them (barring stray family members when they can make the journey) and they live lives in their mind, missing loved ones, missing lives left outside the jail, lamenting the loss of what life leaches from them everyday.

What will you do with our stories, she asked me insistently. Not once, but many a times. Will you write them down and share them with the world or publish them in a newspaper? Will you write about us cropped-2014-006-2.jpgand tell the world about our lives here? Will you? Will you not?

I kept quiet for that moment and told her I appreciated her question and may be I would have to think about it. I came away and the question kept floating in front and her fierce, bright, challenging face questioning…till I arrived at a response. This is the response of me the human, the counselor that I find emerging from the recesses of my soul.

I will listen to your stories like a friend, not a judge and possibly witness their transformation, wherever possible help while you go over the difficult passages. I come in support and acknowledgement of your suffering. I am not a lawyer, nor court, nor judge- I am just a human who understands human suffering, and I am here because we all suffer. That is all. I hope to share this with her when I meet her again.

Mr. Rail Minister-acche din dooor hain

Dear Rail Minister of India, Mr Suresh Prabhu. Namaskar

I sent a parcel from Delhi (PRR number 4000377207) NZM station to Madgaon, in Goa on the 10th June, 2016. The parcel was loaded by a young man who works in our domestic enterprise, his name being Pundalik Zalmi.

Pundalik Zalmi (Gokul) is a simple village boy, who by dint of sheer labour and tenacity has worked his way into being the right hand man of the owner of the enterprise, my spouse. In his family he is the only one who has come so far- economically or socially. He was on his maiden trip to Delhi- to assist me with something. He took the parcel and landed up on the Nizammuddin Station. First of all, he encountered a coolie, who demanded Rs.1200/- to help him reach the parcel to its destination, which was the parcel office of the Indian Rail. When someone intervened the coolie agreed to do the job for Rs.700/-

In the ensuing pell-mell that happened somehow the coolie rushed him into the train, having booked his parcel allegedly on the same Rajdhani Express that Gokul was taking- train number 22414, NZM-MAO. When he got down the next day at Madgaon, the parcel had not reached with him- he went and checked in the luggage van too. He was confused, for it was the first time he was doing such a job.

Next day, and for several days after that he kept going to Madgaon Station every single day, a distance of eight/nine kilometers from our home, asking around for the parcel and then talking to whoever concerned at the station. Several times this was done by another of his colleagues Pravin Shirodkar, who is the driver in the enterprise.

After a few days, there was no sign of the parcel and everyday we were going up and down. Then I spoke with someone in the railway, who suggested I send a twitter message to report the misplacing of my parcel. I was anxious- I had just returned from Delhi myself, the day before and seven days after Gokul but the parcel was still not to be found. I needed the contents of the parcel for my next travel, which is due on the 1st July 2016- I have to return to Delhi with my two dogs, by Jet Airways. My parcel contained doggy crates- PVC containers meant for carrying small animals  by plane.

Upon the suggestion I sent the following tweet

PRR no.4000377207 sent HNzm to MAO_ Goa, 10Jun,16, not received till date. Plz help urgently. Load train 22414, PNR2765467844

This was followed by a daily round of tweeting to scores of people, who linked me to one another. The entire conversation can be seen here-

 https://twitter.com/HansadhwaniP/with_replies

Into the dialogue were roped the Konkan Railway, the Madgaon station people, the NZM station people, the freight people in New Delhi and of course the rail ministry in India. IN the medley, I saw many a bad egg and a few good apples too. This open message to you, Mr. Prabhu is written to bring to your notice one practice, which is perhaps going on regularly in the railways and is routinely unreported or brushed under the carpet.

After my first tweet of 18th, the following week, on Tuesday, 21st June after trying desperately to get hold of some information about the parcel we finally got in touch with one Superintendent at the NZM station called Mr. Meena. He told us that the parcel had been loaded on the train, as per the details here ( i noted them from the website myself)

Parcel/Luggage/VP Details
PRR No./PWB No. 4000377207 Scale Booking Date
From Station HAZRAT NIZAM-UD-DIN JN. Destination Station MAO-MADGOAN JN.
Consignee Name and Address – – – Consignor Name and Address – – –
Item Description Total No. Status
PVC GOODS 1
Last Loading Train No. 22414 Last Loading Stn. NZM-HAZRAT NIZAM-UD-DIN JN. Last Loading Date 10-Jun-2016 11:24
Status Loaded on train Stn. NZM-HAZRAT NIZAM-UD-DIN JN. Status Date 10-Jun-2016 11:25
Last Unoading Train No. Last Unoading Stn. Last Unoading Date

He repeated the same message to everyone concerned.

Now Sir, just make a note of the following- The time of departure of the Madgaon Rajdhani is 10:55 am. IF the train left at 10:55, can any parcel be loaded in it at 11:24 logically?

In several conversations, Mr. Meena (mobile number 09717- 999425) had with both me and my husband he repeated the same information. In the final dialogue we had with him, he even told me that the parcel had been sent to Panvel, instead of Madgoan (perhaps to get rid of our persistent queries?).

Since I was in touch with a gentleman called Upendra Shindye from the Konkan Railways, who had been kind enough to call me on his own, in response to my twitter message to Konkan Railway Corp, I requested Mr. Shindye to make inquiries at his end. He did- I think he even sent someone to Panvel, from Mumbai, though I am not sure about it.

We were already more than ten days from the time the parcel had been loaded. I was worried for a lot hinges on it for me in the present moment for me. Mr. Shindye promised to update me by the evening. The date being 22nd June-12 days later. Meanwhile our rounds to the Madgaon Station were in vain everyday- but we still went. Either Gokul went or Pravin.

Finally my husband went on 22nd- we were all worried, and he met someone there, who promised to help him, then did not call. Later a gentleman called up Gokul and spoke with my husband too. He identified himself as one Mr. Murli (mobile +91 9004476083)- who said he was investigating the case of the missing parcel. My husband proposed to him that he probe into one angle- that the parcel had never left from Delhi in this whole span of time.

Lo and behold…Mr. Murli called and confirmed the suspicion, and said that the parcel would be leaving on the 22nd June 2016, by Goa Express and reach Madgaon on 24th. Later Mr. Shindye of Konkan railways also confirmed the same. IN other words, in this whole span of 12 days when we were all tearing our hair, Mr. Meena kept misleading every single person- saying the parcel had been loaded on the train, whose details are there on the website.

Who is updating the website?

My query and concern to you, Honorable Minister is this-

  1. If the parcel was not loaded on the train, how did it start reflecting on the website?
  2. What sort of a fraud is happening here – in which people’s parcels are getting lost? I at least had access to internet and even twitter, but what about those who cannot use these new technologies? Do you think every Indian who is using the railways for sending parcels is having a twitter account- to knock at your doors for lost goods?
  3. I am told that people are compensated @50/- per kilo of the weight of their parcels. what sort of a way is this to ascribe value to goods people are sending? (My parcel was carrying goods worth at least Rs.50,000/-, though its weight was a mere 25 kgs)
  4. There is a deep flaw in the way parcels are tracked– and there is no verification happening. IF a man can tell us that the parcel has left the station, while it is very much lying on the station, what do you think is happening in this department? How can the website be uploaded and scores of people mislead?
  5. Can you please initiate an inquiry about how goods are getting lost in the Indian rail parcel service and start fixing responsibility for the same?

Can we think of simple village folks like Pundalik Zalmi who come from their villages and lose their belongings on trains, never to have any voice in the whole din and cacophony of the Indian Rail?

Is size of the Indian Rail so big that we do not now care about the common Indian people who use it day and night, putting their hard earned money into goods they transport by trains everyday?

Would a Pundalik Zalmi, not backed by his employers who were English speaking, twitter familiar people, have found his parcel? Would he have the resources to keep going to the station, everyday, leaving his work behind, without losing his job? What employer would have allowed him the leave and not believed that he was lying about the loss of the parcel? 

Today is 24th June, 2016, and true to the word given by Mr. Murli and Mr. Shindye, the parcel reached Madgaon and we duly got a call at 7am confirming that. We of course have to pay a price of Rs.2880/- as the rent of one of them, for we were being charged @ 180/day for the same. The parcel that would have come on 11th, would have meant only four days of rental, instead of the 16 it has become.

But that is not the point, Mr. Minister. The point I am trying to make is would the average Indian have managed to stir so much action? Are we really empowering our people by giving them redressal mechanism via the twitter and other social media?

I am grateful that the twitter action works, but how many Indians have access to it and they use the Indian Rail? Please stop by at any station, Sir, and take a look at the India that travels by train- maybe you would think of other ways to touch their lives and save their hard earned belongings.

(i wish there was a way to measure the quantum of suffering this experience has caused us, starting from the encounter with the coolie- a great shame I assure you)

(Bipolar) Artist with a golden heart- Alfredo Zotti

“In 1981, twenty-three-year old Alfredo Zotti began his lifelong challenge of living with Bipolar II Disorder. He quickly hit rock bottom, spending time as a homeless person and turning to street drugs and alcohol to medicate his symptoms. After hospitalization and careful outpatient monitoring, he became a successful musician and completed university. In 2004, he started to mentor sufferers of mental illness, and together, they developed an online journal. Alfredo now sees mental illness from a new perspective, not of disadvantages but advantages. In his words: “Having a mental illness can be a blessing if we work on ourselves.” ( I have copied this from the author’s page on Amazon.com)

In February 2015, Alfredo wrote me a mail, to my academia address which reached me in March or April for some strange reason, with a request to read and review his book, as a fellow human being who has suffered the consequences of serious mental illness as well as an artist (perhaps). I duly got the book, sent by the publisher.

Alfredo Zotti

Reading the book has been a very touching and beautiful experience because it reveals to me how much a person who has suffered can put his suffering behind and choose to live a life of generosity, depth and genuine inquisitiveness.  There is a lot I would love to quote from the book, as also from the dialogues that ensued between me and Alfredo in the course of reading his book, as well as sharing the second book with me, that he did.

But here are my thoughts about his book, and I really think that anyone who has had a serious bout of illness must read this book, which is so different from all that I have read. The balance that he has created for himself and utilized his art in such meaningful ways, makes one appreciate his spirit immensely. I wholeheartedly recommend his book to anyone who suffers and seeks a way out of mental illness. Of all the books I have read as yet, the reason I do so with this book is that the voice of the person is very calm, gentle and grounded, unlike many other voices which are representing something which does not make you connect with them as people and as sufferers.

You are NOT your label

For many months I have been wanting to write about Suneetha (name changed) who has been talking to me over the phone, ever since she read my article about recovery from mental illness in the Hindu newspaper. Suneetha told me that she had a schizophrenia diagnosis for over two decades of her life and she had been on a number of medications for that and then the comorbidities that appeared later.

One of the key things for her nowadays is SLE (lupus in some form) and then irritable bowel syndrome, which keeps her movements outside her home restricted. When I heard her story long back, I figured she had no reasons for a schizophrenia diagnosis at all. She was given some simple tablet, which could very well  have been a placebo for all the doctor cared, but he certainly gave her a label. She was in her school going years then. Many things happened, including marriage, divorce, brother’s suicide, mother’s death and so forth. Her medications increased over time but none of them had anything to do with her schizophrenia diagnosis, but sometimes memory, sometimes stomach, sometimes concentration. She feels the need to go and seek medical help for these conditions, which I feel basically happen because she is alone, alone and alone! I sometimes admire her courage to live alone and manage to spend a day by herself. It takes a lot for a single woman to survive, without much social support, a job or any significant relationships. It is very courageous indeed.

On this blog sometimes I want to note the interactions I have with this woman, who is now in her early forties, is fearful of going out of her home because she has fear that she may have to go to evacuate her bowels suddenly, as the bowel movement is not predictable, and that has made her life very limited in many ways. Many a times I just talk to her for a short while, 35-30 minutes and offer her courage and alternative ways of looking at her life, which she does not mind considering for the time we talk and even later.

I think the only thing people need is a voice to offer them courage, hope and remind them that there is a reason to be alive. She just now told me that she was very suicidal for the last two weeks, just like her brother (she said). And then she felt better by staying closely connected to her sister’s daughter. Even earlier she has expressed to me that she is happy to be with younger children. So I wondered then why not she go and work in a school, of young children, instead of wanting to work in an engineering job, just because she trained to be an engineer? Is it so difficult to choose happiness, I wondered? Perhaps she  understood and at my recommendation she has been looking around for a school job for the last few months and no longer focusing on getting a job in a company or corporate.

On a parting note she said that she just wanted to hear my voice, instead of writing an email to me, because she feels a lot calmer, once she hears me. And I thought, how much she would benefit if she could be in regular interaction with different sorts of people, who do not constantly remind her of her diagnosis but see what good she offers to them. This is the general tone of my dialogues also with her- building hope and courage. I hope to see new changes in her life, for I can see she is trying to create a new story, and go beyond her diagnosis. I feel just a little more time and things will start looking up. I have to remind her and myself that jobs are not so easy to come by these days, as there is a recession in the market, all over the world, whether we are aware of it or not.

I have hope because the channels of communication are open and many things can flow on those pathways. Recovery included.

Why people do not benefit from counseling easily

Recently I had two experiences which made me view again this question. Does counseling really work and where or why does it, when it does and why not when it does not.

My experience stems from both personal experience of receiving and offering counseling to others. What I find is that when a person who offers counseling to another, it usually momentarily props up the person and possibly puts them on a new path of gaining self confidence or clarity about their current situation. But in that momentary clarity they often think that they have gained all the clarity they require to navigate through all that they are going through, just because the person who is counseling them is also offering them verbal advice ‘only’ which in any case they are smart enough to suggest to themselves as well.

Is that really the case?

A person who takes on the role and responsibility of being a therapist, counselor, psychologist or collaborator is someone who is ‘outside’ of the situation faced by who they help. But that is not the only reason for their insights, also years of preparation to don the role they are now taking on.

Equally true they work with many people at a time and their knowledge may be constantly augmented due to those exposures, or some (like me) who are also studying/working in research. That gives people more perspectives, not to mention the lived experience of mental suffering.

Why people do not seek help easily

Experience tells me that most people who go to counselors and therapists believe that ‘professionals’ are talking from common sense wisdom, which they (who seek help) also have in abundance. So why should they go and pay for common sense wisdom? This reminds me of an experience with a friend long ago, who needed help and I referred to my own psychologist at that time. When she came back from the counseling session with her, she responded, “Why should I go and talk with her, what she had to say is pretty much what you have to say!”. But that is the whole point- when you pay someone you value their wisdom. But then she was a psychologist who my friend had gone to meet and I was training to me one- so it was not a bad thing that I had ideas identical to her. But naturally those ideas were not something which everyone in society is holding. When we see an outsider of our situation to seek their guidance it is an act of reaching out to a pool of wisdom which is universal and a source of insight, outside of our knowledge.

Of course I have to say this, that in my family we were always taught and made to believe that when one has a problem, one needs to go and seek its solutions in the world outside, because the cumulative wisdom of the world or even two other people is going to be more than our own singular knowledge or wisdom. In seeking help we become humble, and invite others to share their ideas with us, even guide us to a certain extent and that is a good sign. Nobody is so unique that their suffering is above or beyond the grasp of suffering of another- yet we closet ourselves in little spaces and freeze emotionally. Time to see that we are humans and we are connected to other humans and if we can establish our connections with others around us, it will stop being a calamity for us and connect us with the flow of life, which has momentarily ceased, due to our withdrawal.

There are two things about common sense I must share in this context. According to Bernard Shaw, ‘common sense is most uncommon‘, and apart from that, common sense wisdom about one’s own situation is not an easily gained sense– so if someone else were to be struck in your situation what you can recommend to them is not what you will recommend to yourself. In our own problems we are also coloured by our subjectivities, whereas an outsider in not. Whatever they can offer is something which is coming from a faraway perspective, not daily living with you.

As a result what a therapist says becomes meaningful, because you do not go and walk through all your problems with them. I always believe that unless people develop help seeking attitudes they can never get out of their immediate situation, because the aggregate knowledge of a system, even if it be a collaboration between two individuals only, is always more than the knowledge and experience of one person.

Of course the path of taking medicines is always available, and that gives a false sense of security that you have addressed the problem in the correct way, as best as you could. People forget that even after taking medicine you still have to act and take responsibility for your life and actions. And for that you still need to go and meet a person who is outside of your situation, to assist you. If your parents, caregivers or friends could do it, you would never land yourself in such a spot, in the first place.

We all need to learn and gain from each other’s knowledge and wisdom. So do not hesitate to seek help and identify who can be of real help, and who not. The faith people have in modern medicines makes them turn towards psychiatry, without realizing that psychiatry cannot solve anyone’s issues of life and survival, often without seeing where the suffering stems from.

Faith in modern medicine

Like I wrote in the recent article, if our faith in psychiatry stems from our faith in the ethics of science and we assume that science is always ethical and scientific progress is always intended for the best outcomes in society, then we would never have seen the destruction of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, due to the atom bomb. Neither would we see so much war, hunger and disease all over the world. We already have enough resources for the whole planet earth- but do they really get where they ought to be reaching? In reality however, notwithstanding our belief in the ethics of science, it has become a slave of the market. Wherever there is profit to be made science becomes a method using which people do diverse acts to suppress knowledge and help others. People do not need so much medicine for mental suffering- they just need dialogue and communication, which was fractured in their lives long back- there is a need to re-establish the relationships we have with the world and with ourselves, honor our needs and those of others around and in general live a life of relative peace.

Even if you consume medicine, does it address the underlying causes of your suffering, and tell you that now the suffering will be taken care of? People who do not want to go the counseling way, need to ask themselves this seriously or else face a life long dependence on psychiatry, with not much progress.

Losing sight of your Self

A few days ago a friend left a message saying he wanted to talk, over the chat box of fb. After a little effort of a few days we got together to talk. He suffered and I could see that, but having known him for a couple of years I could not connect the dots- though I never under-estimate anyone’s ability for suffering.

I sensed there was a dejection of the spirit and a pressure which probably had built over a long time, especially seeing one’s peers well established by a certain age and him struggling with holding on to a job. I think there are many people who need to find the groove they fit into before they can be in the groove for long enough- and for some that may be a difficult road to try out several grooves before you land up in the right one.

I have been seeing him for a long time and this is the sense I always got from him- that he was in search of the right groove, which would fit into his soul and unlock potential lying within, making him happy and feel fulfilled. The reality of life is a very funny thing. It seldom offers such linear solutions- so we have to constantly find our balance and adjust with whatever we have in our hands- that is what is called ‘compromise’! ALAS!

Anyhow, while counseling I look at everyone as someone who has momentarily lost sight of who they are, or is unaware of who they are in general. But with those who are in depressions, I particularly see that they have reduced themselves to self-hurting talk, that goes on inside ceaselessly. Instead of he telling me how he was feeling, I offered this  perspective –

I think you are feeling very overwhelmed by what you are faced with in a new job and also seeing yourself viz.a. viz, your peers and classmates and thinking they are all doing so well, while you are still searching for the right job. And possibly all the past hurt is also accumulated and giving you an overall sense of failure, that seems too large to handle. Plus in the new job that you are, you feel pressured to rise upto the levels of expectations others have of you and you fear you cannot deliver.

He agreed this was indeed the case. Of course about the new job I am only quoting his insights, for he felt that the goals were too high for him to acheive and he was closeted inside himself, instead of being able to interact with others around, for that made him feel insecure, as though they would be able to judge his lack of ability- while he of course has the ability. He just forgot this for the inner talk that went on inside him, made him feel like a loser.

And this is what I shared with him then, and my words to any who has momentarily lost sight of who they are-

what you are today is a culmination of all your past. Your past is not just made up of your failures, because even failures are new knowledge. You have a lot of strength, based on which you have been hired in the first place. Do not push yourself but be gentle and remember that what is your current goal, and which unnerves you, is already within your reach- that is why this goal has been set for you by those who hired you. They know you can do it.

Life is not a summary, it is an unfolding, in which we move from the past to the present, integrate the learning from our failures and successes, act in the present and lay foundations for the future. Do not see any of these as though they are complete within themselves.

Of course what I told him, was also in particular said to him, which was that

Even if you are not the way others are, of your age and among your peers, I feel you are on the path of finding an authentic expression of your soul, that is why this confusion, this search for gurus and teachers and new jobs and new colleagues, a certain restlessness. For most people a job that pays and takes care of their bills is all that they want. For ones who want a little more the price is bit unusual- so do not compare yourself with those whose yardsticks of living and measuring success are not determined my your scale.

I asked him how he felt after that. He said, he felt a lot lighter, and his spirits had lifted already!

This is what I work like– to just bring light into the darkness, in which a suffering spirit has encased itself. This entire dialogue happened within 20 minutes, and I knew my dal, that was cooking on the stove, would then burn, so I just pushed him away- but not before I was certain that the psychiatric diagnosis had been laid to rest. There was no depression that needed a cure- just a reminder about the divine that hides within and asks for recognition– a play that I always love.

I also put this under the head of relational leading, for had it not been the trust he had in me, to call me up to seek this insight, i could not have shed this light on the situations around him. His instinct lead him to me, but my instinct about him and his suffering lead him into a ‘clearing’ – the goal of the therapeutic dialogue accomplished for the moment.

Me- the collaborator 🙂

DSC01030

Helping a fellow human being…gone beyond reach!

I was crestfallen when i began writing this post. Perhaps for the last few days- though unable to identify where it is coming from. Perhaps one too many things add up to a feeling and the haze that it creates does not allow any clarity to emerge.

Yesterday a facebook friend from Pakistan told me to talk to another someone from Pakistan and gave me an Indian number to call. I did- they were a Pakistani couple stranded in Delhi, due to some problems and were made targets of security forces and overzealous police out there to nab anyone from across the border. Anyways, it seems they were also in custody and that was quite tragic, because they were on the wrong side of the law, on pure suspicion which they were cleared of later.

Now to return to their country they needed to give a surety to the government- and were short by funds.http://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/Delhi/send-me-home-says-pakistani-woman/article6315467.ece. I just felt their utter helplessness and the pleas for help- the husband spoke with me as well. On the facebook chat they said this to me- mostly people are reluctant and runs away .. due to our origin and religion .. but the court is fair and we have got the opperturnity .

I can understand this picture from all the sides- as though a big drama on which i am just a spectator and even if I want, I cannot pitch into. So this is what made me troubled and humbled at the same time. People run away seeing they are Pakistani…but really, are they? I can only see them as my fellow humans who have been wronged and their suffering, weathering and tears are writ large on their faces.

Anyhow hopefully in some way some solution may be found by that friend from London sending money – but the thing is that I am pained and saddened about is that so many people who sit on the internet in the name of groups and organizations across the border- they simply did not help these two. I wonder where our real humanity lies or slumbers and what people are trying to do by becoming popular on facebook fora. What is their motive, if it is not helping another fellow human.

Here is another post about the same- http://defence.pk/threads/a-pakistani-couple-abducted-from-nepal-tortured-in-india-ahrc.241931/

If you only look at their faces, can they have anything except sadness written there- can someone even remotely think they could be terrorists? What is wrong with those in the security forces that they do not know one from another human any more and everyone is suspect- are we lost as a race?!

In the course of writing this blog post many other things happened on the side, and hopefully before the end of the day, something would have worked out for them, for at least Soofia to visit Karachi- am praying for them and like I said to them- I do not need the mediation of any religion to be connected to my god, whatever s/he be. In response that my words, s/he say- may God accept your prayer and bless you n you and n family too .. extend you with good h(e)alth and succsss .. aameen. 

I was not sure who was talking to me on the chat and that is why i am saying s/he- but I do believe that my prayers will be answered. Let me hold on to it.