Our phones buzz all the time
I have always held that for those who believe in the truth no explanation is needed and for those who do not, no explanation can be enough. There are still some questions about the infamous Malik Riaz interview that keep coming back to me from time to time. It doesn’t matter how many times I answer the same questions, there are people who will want to have another peep into the entire thing yet again.
For instance, why did Abdul Qadir Gilani call me on the phone? Well, to begin with, he has called me before as well in. Once, I asked a question of Imran Khan during a live show when he had texted me. Imran replied to the question as well and you can see the link on YouTube. It seems now everything is on YouTube.
My 11 year old son logs on to the web and tells me what I did or did not do in high school. Phew! This is incredible as most of it is not even correct or accurate. For example, I can vouch for the fact that I was never a brilliant student in high school but some of my fans have put it differently on the web.
Coming back to the matter of the ‘call’, getting calls during live shows is a norm and nothing unusual. A lot of times one gets them. And if anyone thinks that we as journalists (and especially senior journalists) do not know high political figures, then please think again. Those who felt that a question was planted in the show, please think again. I do not wish to name names but most of your political heads will not appear in any show unless they know the questions beforehand or can have their thoughts and policy incorporated in the interview. These are small occupational hazards. Hence, there were some top people who never gave me interviews because I never gave them a questionnaire beforehand. I challenged all anchors that took digs at me to show mid-breaks of their shows recorded before this one so I can also learn how to sit during a mid-break. Sadly, no one has taken up the challenge yet, and chances are no one ever will because they too know that they are singing a tune which has no melody to it.
A very senior columnist wrote in an article that he salutes the man who stole the footage and then others joined the bandwagon offering him great jobs and additional perks. Well, I am amazed. On one hand, they talk about ending corruption and evils from the society and then are busy promoting thefts and thieves. What a farce. On one hand they never tire of quoting from the Quran and on the other they are busy creating a hero out of a thief. They keep on reminding President Zardari how Hazrat Umer RA acted as a caliph and how the president must follow his footsteps but cease to apply the same principles when it comes to their choices. Some of these people took plots and benefits and years later when property prices were declining and not escalating, they made a convenient public statement about returning that property. For me, they are a travesty of deception and icons of hypocrisy. But I shall leave you to judge their behaviour and decide for yourself.
Coming back to the interview, I regularly get calls from people during shows and some of those who have criticised me also do. It’s a norm and there’s nothing wrong with it. I would like to add a word about Sheikh Waqas Akram though who went on air to blast me with his lies. I have only met him once and, as I recall, that too in the presence of most of his party leaders. He lied about me because I showed his fake degree on television and the list of bogus votes in his constituency that he had used to win the elections - the same man who until recent past abused the top leadership of PPP is leaving no stone unturned to secure a federal ministry.
Another man who criticised me, Rana Sanaullah, on the other hand, is an employee of a group where he cannot speak the truth anyways. Would he like to explain why his own plaza was never even touched when all illegal plazas were demolished in Lahore. He can also explain why he kept going back on the commitments he made with the YDA(P) as law minister. Only he can give an accurate answer about that. But more about Rana Sana later. Presently, I shall leave it to your judgment to decide if the question in the interview was planted or not? In the meanwhile, I would like to remind my detractors that tough situations may not last but tough people will last definitely and that I am still around.
Part 2 of a series of articles