By Ali Usman (Daily Times)
LAHORE: Defence Day is being celebrated today, however, the traditional enthusiasm is missing from the people because of inflation and the country’s law and order situation, experts said on Friday.
Though the City District Government Lahore (CDGL) has pasted various posters of the martyrs of 1965 at the Town Hall, most Lahoris remained indifferent about the day. In previous years, Pakistan Television (PTV), the state-run channel, used to broadcast special programmes on the day. However, this year, most television channels have not arranged any special programmes for Defence Day.
Reasons: Historian Dr Mubarik Ali said that people faced inflation, security issues, poverty and unemployment, which left them with no time to commemorate Defence Day. He said that the masses’ problems had gripped them to the extent that they did not even bother to think about the past. He said, “Celebrations are carried out in ages of prosperity, not when the essentials of life are scarce. The common man is not able to celebrate the past because he is too engulfed in his present problems.”
Commenting on the September 6, 1965 Indo-Pak war, Ali said, “In India, they use the same war to propagate their ideas and patriotism, while in our country we glorify some war heroes for our own interests.” He said that the purpose of history was to create awareness amongst the public, adding that there are very few objective historians left in our country. The establishment dislikes those who remain objective and hence, it tries to block their messages from the masses, he said.
Buntings: Muhammad Ali, a citizen, said that once there had been a time when people bought stickers and buntings to commemorate Defence Day, but now, as essential commodities like flour were not easily accessible, there was no sign of any celebrations.
Akhtar, a buntings and stickers shopkeeper at Urdu Bazaar, said that a few years ago, people used be enthusiastic about Defence Day, but now, only a few were interested in buying posters and stickers for it.