Sahiwal

January 23rd, 2019 / 10:43 AM

Sahiwal Incident is a national tragedy.

I have never liked policemen. Somehow the law enforcement agencies in my country represent evil. If one half of law is the intricate system of judiciary, the other without a doubt is the system of police and other law enforcing institutes.No one can pinpoint to how a crime comes to being or how a criminal is made in the first place. There are examples of people who went to the wrong side just because they were never treated well on the right side. Look at the example of what happened in Sahiwal. What would happen to the minds of a youngster when he sees his parents shot to death in broad daylight by none other than the people who were supposed to protect them. The print and the electronic media are the two main sources which are keeping me updated on the incident and how it is unfolding in front of our eyes. Shock and grief are the two emotions which have spread throughout the country but we as a nation have weaker memories and tomorrow we will forget what happened. The tragedy of a dying breed whether it is a dying breed of an animal or an art or a nation is that they never remember those tragedies which happened to others but they only remember the ones that affect them and those too on an individual level. It is our personal interests over the national interest which has divided us to a level that now there is no going back unless we cut back on our greed. This very greed of us is what has us divided in the first place. It is our greed of life which makes us afraid of these monsters in uniforms. We see everyday the policeman searching civilians in the name of law the so-called snip checking. Still the crime rate is high and people are afraid more from these traders of law who were supposed to be protectors. I still remember the man who used to sell fruit-juice in my neighborhood. Because he was too friendly with a policeman he had to suffer a fatal wound when that policeman was attacked in a targeted attack.

Just imagine witnessing a car travelling on the motorway carrying a family with women and children in it. Suddenly you see a police car chasing them and then blocking their way. Out jump those masked policemen who would shoot a spray of bullets on that car killing the members of the family instantly without the intervention or thought of law, logic or humanity. There are no external reason why other nations fear and scorn us. It is our own hypocrisy whether it comes to the system of law or the system of justice or the system of religious equality and social justice. We are hypocrites. You can never argue with a bearded trader of religion because there are so many educated and cultured blind following are crippled wheelchair wala who easily label you as a blessed famous and then send you to a harsh end. Luckily the bastard is behind bars as of this writing. But every monster comes out in a weaker system. It is so easy to just blame someone of a serious charge like blasphemy and then settle personal scores. The tragedy is that in a country of God, I found no God. You never know when some mullah might blame God for blasphemy or when a policewala shoot him.

Aamir Bilal

Flickr

November 5th, 2018 / 4:08 AM

After twelve years of love, the old flame still keeps burning. The sting of nostalgia and everything associated with it is always hard to give up. Like an old city where a person has lived keeps calling him. Again. And again. And yet again. The old city of Flickr.

I still remember the time when sharing a picture was more of a problem. It was a bigger problem than taking a picture and transferring it to your computer was. that is why more genius people started thinking of a cure and came up with a wonderful service called Flickr. The solution was remarkable but the only shortcoming that I faced with it was the number of images that I could share with someone else was limited to 200. But even that did not stop me from uploading the images as I knew that all the images were safe. At least I intended to get a paid subscription in the later years when I can happily enjoy all the pictures that I have uploaded to the service. Many detailed articles on the Internet talk about how Yahoo purchased a vehicle and then destroyed it eventually selling it to Verizon after a data breach. But even Verizon could not contain the fallout and the fiasco led to people leaving Flickr. The love for photography has not died, at least not yet. That’s the reason why I was hopeful when Smugmug bought Flickr in 2018. They have recently paid attention to all those free hoarders which we can find in almost any community and any service who are there only to pollute the beautiful walled gardens. Just look at what they have done to Facebook Twitter and Instagram. These were really good places just like mountain towns. Now the crowd has destroyed them. The same crowd found free enterprise-grade storage of 1 Terabyte on Flickr. They were the people who were least bothered about community interactions in photography. They just wanted a place where they can store their photographs and delete them from the computer and save some space. I remember once a property broker came to the hospital. When I asked him where he lived, he told of an average neighborhood just to keep his low profile from all the extortionists. A colleague added, “Why is that posh town so expensive?” The broker replied, “The taps don’t push out milk in that area. The price exists just to keep the filthy poor out.” To this day I remember his ideology. Free is what made Facebook filthy, Android filthy, Twitter filthy, Instagram filthy. You will never find Bahria Town filthy, DHA filthy, Cantonment filthy, etc. Flickr was great. Then the free-minded settlers moved in. This recent price tag push will kick them out just to let those who care about photos stay.

It is a good move in the long run. Technology giants like Google, Amazon, and Facebook or even Microsoft should introduce a bundled service that packs some services under one roof. Only if there existed such a service that had a section for all the tweet-like statuses being streamed and a blog section for longer blog posts, a photo drive where all photographs one has ever taken are saved (in their original quality) along with those cherished screenshots and a video drive where all the videos are safely backed up. Those who care about their data would move to this amazing town instantly. The service would be more ideal if a personal domain could be linked to it. It is quite possible and eventually, someone is going to make this dream a reality.

Flickr may start looking like a posh neighborhood in the future. But that is what I fear too. I seek peace and harmony that was destroyed by free hoarders. My experiences are riddled with dust collected from the surroundings from Saddar Town and Walton Colony to Nishat Colony and Old Anarkali that if life moves me to a palace, I might leave the fancier walls when everyone else falls asleep, sneak out, take a ride to that part of the old city, sneak into my old home and fall off to a peaceful sleep on the cold concrete floor.

Aamir Bilal

 (Zafar Gorakhpuri) (Zafar Gorakhpuri)

چڑیل | The Witch

October 8th, 2018 / 4:49 PM

I came across a book while roaming the old bazaar. A book about witches, or better, a book on the subject of witches. The subject has existed in almost every culture, religion, and region though the ideas, beliefs, myths, and ideologies about evil under the guise of a woman differ. Even the one I was born and raised in has a lot to say about this fascinating subject. From folk tales, dramas, contemporary literature, modern writings to informal gossip, proverbs, urban myths, and those evening warnings dadi used to say when we kids wanted to go to the neighborhood park, she existed.

As I grew up, so did that churail (چڑیل). She has lost that horrifying makeover from my earliest perceptions. Maybe those perceptions came into existence from all that was spoken about her. No more exist her hard reptilian skin or her beastly nails. The glowing white or black-hole dark eyes are gone too. She doesn’t levitate in the air or walk on the ground with those inverted feet of hers. The horrifying mask of her has fallen. Out has come to the appearance I had never expected. Organic. Staple. And normal. Like any other non-witch being. Only a master with the skill and experience might be able to spot her. The fools of men would never be able to do so, even with a thousand eyes. Perhaps that is the reason why she mixes herself so well in the crowd and ordinary mortals fail to spot her truer self.

Not all definitions one starts believing in exist in the dictionary. Not all ideas one follows are taught at a school. The experience is, after all, the best teacher. It is that very same experience that helped craft definitions for hard and impossible to define concepts including those of life, death, love, divine, and the witch. Out from the hideous and centuries-old reptilian skin has come a normal and organic witch who looks like any other woman one would come across. In her definition, she has been to the universities and beyond. She has a social media presence that she uses, very aptly, for two of the most nefarious purposes – propaganda and stalking. Beyond her apparent modernist ideologies exists a centuries-old soul, if the soul has something to do with her. Her beliefs do not bend with the fevers of the present era. Men of the modern age would not stand a moment before her ancient powers.

Two of the short stories in my book are inspired by this topic. This number does not do justice as the number of witches that helped define her is higher. I know this because at least a few of them would surely read these words. Yes, this is for your eyes. You are the witch for you know what lives under your skin better than any mortal ever can. A few of the witches were kind enough. They didn’t suck blood even after biting. None of them had inverted feet even when some had feet that incited the foot fetish and helped it evolve to new heights. I always wondered what if one day she reveals her true nature and her feet bend backward, would my fetish stay the same or disappear? What if her horrendous scary skin was not what she removed but the skin was something she just wore on to mix among her human preys? A few witches kept saying that men are dogs. I am not sure of others but had I been one, I would have seen her true self. I was told dogs see what humans cannot. Maybe the inner dog found a bone in this book bazaar. I look forward to a new definition this book might help craft.

Aamir Bilal

August 26th, 2018 / 7:26 PM

 

ردیف قافیہ بندش خیال لفظ گری
وہ حور زینہ اترتے ہوئے سکھانے لگی

کتاب باب غزل شعر بیت لفظ حروف
خفیف رقص سے دل پر ابھارے مست پری

کلام عروض تغزل خیال ذوق جمال
بدن کے جام نے الفاظ کی صراحی بھری

قصیدہ شعر مسدس رباعی نظم غزل
مہکتے ہونٹوں کی تفسیر ہے بھلی سے بھلی

بیان علم معانی فصاحت علم بلاغ
بیان کر نہیں سکتے کسی کی ایک ہنسی

حریر اطلس و کمخواب پنکھڑی ریشم
کسی کے پھول سے تلووں سے شاہ مات سبھی

گلاب عنبر و ریحان موتیا لوبان
کسی کی زلف معطر میں سب کی خوشبو ملی

کسی کے مرمریں آئینے میں نمایاں ہیں
گھٹا بہار دھنک چاند پھول دیپ کلی

کسی کے شیریں لبوں سے ادھار لیتے ہیں
مٹھاس شہد رطب چینی قند مصری ڈلی

کسی کے نور کو چندھیا کے دیکھیں حیرت سے
چراغ جگنو شرر آفتاب پھول جھڑی

کسی کے حسن کو بن مانگے باج دیتے ہیں
وزیر میر سپاہی فقیہ ذوق شہی

نگاہیں چار ہوئیں وقت ہوش کھو بیٹھا
صدی دہائی برس ماہ روز آج ابھی

سیاہ زلف گھٹا جال جادو جنگ جلال
فسوں شباب شکارن شراب رات گھنی

ظریف ابرو غضب غمزہ غصہ غور غزل
گھمنڈ قوس قضا عشق طنز نیم سخی

گلابی گال شفق سیب سرخی غازہ کنول
طلسم چاہ بھنور ناز شرم نرم گری

نشیلی ٹھوڑی تبسم ترازو چاہ ذقن
خمیدہ خنداں خجستہ خمار پتلی گلی

گلا صراحی نوا گیت سوز آہ اثر
ترنگ چیخ ترنم ترانہ سر کی لڑی

ہتھیلی ریشمی نازک ملائی نرم لطیف
حسین مرمریں صندل سفید دودھ دھلی

جو اس پہ بوند گری ابر کپکپا اٹھا
اس ایک لمحے میں کافی گھروں پہ بجلی گری

قیامت آ گئی خوشبو کی کلیاں چیخ پڑیں
گلاب بولا نہیں غالباً وہ زلف کھلی

کمال‌ لیلیٰ تو دیکھو کہ صرف نام لیا
”پھر اس کے بعد چراغوں میں روشنی نہ رہی”

عطائے حسن تھی قیسؔ اک جھلک میں شوخ غزل
کتاب لکھتا میں اس پر مگر وہ پھر نہ ملی

 

Waves

August 1st, 2018 / 05:51 PM

They don’t understand the waves that reach the shores.

They don’t understand the songs they carry.

They don’t understand the things they speak.

They don’t.

Reset Button

August 2nd, 2018 / 3:30 PM

Everyone at old age wants to become young again. There is a price of being young. The price of experiencing the same things including troubles and pain and learning from these experiences. After realizing the actual price of starting life over again, many might not want to press the reset button. It is not easy to give everything up and face the same tortures and the same monsters for another time. Nobody wants to die twice just to be in the same heaven.
Changing one’s primary method of communication to a newer bridge is not comfortable. It surely has the same price. Without a doubt, the advantage is as enormous as the hardship. I waited for almost 15 minutes in the hall before this realization hit me. I gave up the idea of creating a new Rome. I can live with the monster but I don’t have both the stamina and the courage to get a new number again and start the communication of life from the beginning. I cannot press the reset button. I guess that’s why a lot of men do not develop the same spark once they get married. The newer attractions live only in the cages of flings and attractions. They opt for such comforting and easier adventures instead of falling into a pit that has fewer chances of coming out ever again. So let’s not press that button. Let’s never press that button.


Never. 

Unplugged

April 14th, 2018 / 07:38 AM

It is not easy to keep an eye on someone. It is expensive and gets even more expensive as time passes. We all have our reasons, some nasty and some genuine, to keep an eye on someone. A mother keeps her eye on her children. We know why she does so but why would a clingy ex keep an eye on someone. Years ago I was searching for a place to post writings at. I came across a service that allowed posting using SMS. That service was Twitter. Over the years I found myself in a love-hate relationship with it. Eventually, I stopped using it some years ago for which I had my reasons. Luckily, a few of them are now married. Still, marriage is no guarantee to not keep an eye on someone. It itself brings a heap of responsibilities that everybody is not able to carry. It explains some of the reasons which at their core are still the same while their appearances have become motherly.

I made a new Twitter ID that was anonymous. My primary intent was to interact with new people because at times I needed new people to talk to and the only new people that I was talking to in those days were the patients. The hospital environment is no party. I used to think that a social space like Twitter however is, to some extent at least. Twitter has become a swimming pool of shit and piss but it is full of random people. That absolute random talk exists there. Even if one doesn’t want to join them, one can be a silent observer and witness a conversation fold out. I thought that if I had a new ID, that would serve as a mask. The anonymity would help me vent energy to learn something new. Even today I don’t think that what I did was religiously, morally, culturally, or socially wrong. You can be anyone on the internet. I once became a Muslim Vampire. It was short-lived. But it wasn’t wrong. The vampire did not hurt anyone. It could not be as wrong as keeping an eye on someone especially after the person you are keeping an eye on is no longer relevant to you. Maybe some people have no good left in their lives. Somehow two once-amazing ladies found out that it was me who was behind that ID. It is true that I always felt genes of a sniffer inside them but I thought that they were in lesser amount. Boy, I was wrong. 

It was not my first attempt at making an anonymous ID and using that as a mask of anonymity to interact with people. In 2017 I made one more attempt at a new online life. That made my total number of attempts reach five. Out of these five, only twice was I wearing the persona of a girl. Every time I was behind an avatar of a girl, I thought that it logically ruled me out of the possibility that someone would think that it was me. In heels and mascara, I followed boys. I stayed kind to a few of them. I became harsh to a few of them. I lured a few to their untimely regrets. One positive aspect of it was the growing number of screenshots that I took and have saved even to this date. All those screenshots were no less than inspiration for dialogues and for stories that I created at a later time. The dilemma was that I was not a girl on the inside which is why those accounts became stagnant very soon and died eventually.

One of the clingy ladies found out about one of those IDs too. Twitter’s algorithm works in some crazy way and brings disasters to the front seats. In those days I used to draw pictures after coming back from the hospital. That is why I took the mask of an illustrator in made my second last anonymous ID. But even that adventure was also short-lived. 

I know that she knows that Aamir is aware of her knowledge of Aamir’s anonymous account.

I know that she knows that Aamir is aware of her knowledge that why Aamir doesn’t use that ID anymore.

I confess that I started liking that illustrator’s identity because the main fuel for it was those pictures that I used to draw on paper and later as digital drawings. An interesting thing happened afterward. A girl interacted who allegedly lived in Rawalpindi. I never asked her what she did but she used to interact liking almost every tweet that I posted. And one day we had an interaction beyond just liking the tweets. It was like any other harmless interaction that happens on Twitter. Harmless and halal for any curious mind. The interactions never grew beyond a certain point. Then one day she asked me to draw a picture of hers like my other drawings. Even at that point, I had not told her anything about the real me. She had no idea who the actual person was behind that account. This is what I used to believe. I was wrong. Very wrong. Because later on the account of that girl ceased to exist. And even before I had started drawing her, I came to the realization that the account I was to draw a picture of never belong to a real person. The same strong feeling exists even today. That ID that interacted with my anonymous ID of illustrator was one of the many sleeper probes the two clingy women have developed over the years. My tweets kept coming after that event but something was changed. The digital existence seemed liked an emotionless space I was swimming through waiting to get fished.

The last and the final attempt that I made of living an unknown being occurred in the February of 2018. So far nobody has either claimed of discovering me or any ripples are created from my tweets. Such ripples eventually reach me and make me realize the leaks that exist. What can Aamir possibly talk about? Poetry, books, medicine, painting, movies, graphic novels, nostalgia, Punjabi music, and flirting. He would never talk about Chinese food, artificial jewelry, cruel in-laws, and political Gods. These are a few things that the sleepers use to make wild but good guesses. Very intelligent guesses. They cannot guess anymore now. A win for them is a loss too. 

Today marks the day when I have closed all the accounts that I have operated in other names. Each one of them except for my original account has been shut down. I am a lazy soul. I intend to start posting over the original account soon. But what the stalkers would guess about now? The memoirs channels @LahoreDiaries and original ones @AamirBilal @AamirAliBilal live on. I still visit my old town from time to time and see a few familiar faces who have changed with the time that has shown its colors on them. But on the inside, they are still the same.

Some sadist.

Some hopeless.

And some are still emitting only negative energy because that is the only energy they have.

It fills me with extreme happiness that an ID that I had been using since 2010 has crossed 70000 posts. I write down very honest feelings there. It is like a notebook. I didn’t expect that one day it would grow to this milestone. We know that diaries can be lost or stolen and as I had lost diaries in the past, that is why I am extremely careful with this one. I have already downloaded and printed a copy of all the tweets that I have posted on the ID from as early as 2010. I have zero following and zero followers and 70058 tweets as of this writing. 

A part of me still loves Twitter but that part of me is very afraid of what Twitter has created and also of what Twitter the people have created now. 

There are some decisions in life for which I always applauded myself. And keeping a lock on my oldest Twitter account is one of those decisions. There only I myself keep an eye on myself and it is not expensive either.

All the leaks are closed. 

The Creeps

March 12th, 2018 / 04:32 PM

 

 ڈاؤ کے دنوں میں ایک کتاب کے بارے میں پڑھا. کوئی پروفیسر صاحب ہیں جنہیں بچپن سے تصویریں بنانے کا شوق تھا لیکن کچھ وجوہات کی بنا پر زندگی نے ان کو یہ کام کرنے نہیں دیا مگر پچھلے کچھ سال سے ان کے پاس کچھ لوگ آئے جو ان پروفیسر صاحب کو مختلف فوبیا کے بارے میں بتاتے جن سے جو بچپن سے دوچار ہیں. پروفیسر صاحب نے ایک تصویر بنائی . بعد میں بہت سی ایسی تصویریں وجود میں آئیں جو ان لوگوں کے فوبیا کو بیان کرتی ہیں آئیڈیا تو بہت بے مثال تھا اس تصویریں بنانے والے پروفیسر کا ٹمبلر اکاونٹ بھی ہے جہاں پر وہ بہت عرصے سے ان تصویروں کو شائع کرتے آ رہے ہیں. پہلی بار میں نے بھی ان کو ٹمبلر پر ہی دریافت کیا. ایک روز مجھے پتہ چلا کہ انہوں نے بہت ساری اچھی تصویروں کو جمع کر کے ایک کتاب بناڈالی. بدقسمتی کہ وہ کتاب پاکستان میں میسر نہیں. تو مجھے وہ کتاب درآمد کرنی پڑی لیکن اس کے لیے چھ ہفتے لگے. صبر کرنے مشکل تھا تو میں نے آئی ٹیونز سے وہ کتاب ڈاؤنلوڈ کرلی. اس بات کو اب چار برس گزر چکے ہیں مجھے پھر سے پتہ چلا کہ پروفیسر نے اپنی کتاب کا دوسرا حصہ شائع کر دیا. میں جانتا ہوں کہ مزید چھ ہفتے انتظار میرے بس کا روگ نہیں. میں نے کچھ گھنٹے پہلے وہ کتاب ڈاؤنلوڈ کرلی اور اب وہ کتاب ختم ہونے کو ہے .لیکن آس پاس شور بہت ہے اور کسی بھی کتاب کو ختم کرنے کے لیے دوچیزیں درکار ہیں ایک خاموشی اور دوسرا وہ کتاب خود. اچھا ہے جب سے نئی جگہ نوکری شروع ہوئی ہے میں 300 کتابیں کھا چکا ہوں جن میں سے اڑتالیس 2018 کی ہیں. جس کو موقع ملے وہ یہ کتاب ضرور پڑھے. کیا پتا کوئی ایسا خوف آپ کے اندر بھی پل رہا ہوں جس سے آپ اب تک نہیں جانتے

 

Disappearing

February 18th, 2018 / 03:03 PM  
Some of the events that have fascinated my mind and inspired me to write including fiction have happened even before I was born. That is why out of natural curiosity I sometimes search the internet hoping to find newspaper cuttings or even the entire newspaper from that day. But this search is not always fruitful because back in the day when the digital medium was non-existent most of what existed now has dissipated over time. It is extremely hard to find any newspaper from that time in a good and legible quality. In the last year or so that I lived in Lahore I was living kilometres away from where I used to go daily. My path involved a bus stop from where I used to grab a newspaper everyday. That was my time killer on the way. When I moved to Karachi I was able to look back into time and probe through old news which for a person like me is always inspiring and thought provoking. But as the years have progressed I have come across a knowing that much of these old archives of the newspapers are being deleted. This can be very deliberate for either of the two reasons. First, people want to save data centre space which is why they delete old stuff from their servers. Second, somebody high in the corridors of power wants data deleted or at least not easily accessible by some member of the public for God-knows-what nefarious reasons. That someone ought to be a very powerful man because beyond a particular date I am not able to retrieve any Pakistani newspaper from the archive in any language. With time even I face the dilemma of space shortage in my digital life especially after the advent of extremely high resolution cameras that are capable of taking clearer memories for the years to come. Still this has not stopped to me from making new data which I know would also take up space. As technology is evolving so is the medium on which we save our memories. The prices of hard drives have fallen drastically in the last decade. I know that newspaper agencies or the publishers have many tricks up their sleeves to make more money from something already published like old newspapers and maybe they have done it themselves so as to release all old papers on a digital medium or a website with a paid model. As a student of life I still firmly believe that some information which has reached the public domain is bound to stay public and this includes newspapers but we as a failing Nation lack libraries and newspaper repositories which can help in a lot of fields including the potential solving of unsolved crimes just buy research. But that research demands a source of information. There is no better resource than a newspaper. Now the big dilemma stands in front of me “Where to find the old ones?”  This is why I have already saving at least three different newspapers on a daily basis at my end so that after some years if their footprint vanishes from the wonderful internet at least I would have a copy of them to upload for somebody seeking answers. You never know, that very well be you!  
 

  تفصیلات اخبارات 
تفصیلات اخبارات 

Maps

10 January
Maps fascinate me. I still remember the globe and atlas books I had in my school days. The teachers were impressed by my geography knowledge. When Google launched Maps and Earth, I was overjoyed. Even now, the most public domain contributions I have contributed to are on Google Maps. In August of last year, I planned to create a poster which involved map and a drawing which was also inspired by maps and cartography. But due to the stress of work and battles on more than one front, those ideas stayed on a hold. But for the last week or so, that artwork is under construction. Google Maps, 360cities, Flickr and public domains are the tools that let me travel to the places I am still in love with. A few moments ago I probed through the streets I still hold dear.