VIP protocol: Thanks for the extra sleep!
Over the last few years, Pakistanis have become accustomed to measures that are routinely taken to ensure security for VIPs of the land. Of these measures, blocking roads to ensure safe and free flow of traffic for our VIPs while the general public is stuck in huge traffic jams for hours has now become an accepted part of our culture.
This indignity, inflicted on us in the name of providing foolproof security to senior political and military figures, has no roots in Pakistan’s original culture. It has been imposed on the citizenry, much like inflation, corruption, unemployment and poverty. However, this imposed culture does have some redeeming features which should be freely acknowledged.
Firstly, being stuck in a traffic jam caused by VIP movements has resulted in a sharp rise in the income of beggars, who take full advantage of the situation and make a killing by going to each vehicle by turn, begging them to spare some change.
Secondly, this phenomenon has provided the citizens with the opportunity to take long naps while sitting in their vehicles and waiting for the traffic to clear up. This free-of-charge ‘service’ is provided to all without discrimination as people from every caste, creed, religion and ethnicity can make use of it.
Thirdly, those who enjoy taking long drives can cherish the opportunity to indulge in their favourite activity as many of the U-turns are blocked, compelling them to travel a couple of extra miles in order to reach their destinations.
It is indeed strange that despite all the ‘benefits’ that this imposed culture brings with it, people all over the country and especially those of the capital Islamabad, who probably get to enjoy these ‘services’ more than those of any other city are constantly appealing to the concerned authorities to relieve them of the ‘joy’ they go through every time a VIP is on the road.
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