Multi-generational legacies

The murder of Amir Balaj Truckanwala rocked the city. That made the feud carry over into the third generation, for first not only did Balaj’s father Tipu get murdered, but so did his grandfather Billa, the first to be nicknamed Truckanwala, which indicated that they were transporters.

The people blamed for the killing were Goga Butt and Teefee Butt. This was something of a surprise, because there was supposed to have been peace made between the two groups. Well, that wasn’t the case. The late Balaj left behind two sons. No prizes for guessing what they will have to do now. Their grandfather Tipu had also left two sons, one of whom had to register the FIR which named the two Butts.

In this familial feud there was perhaps a certain rightness about the venue for the murder, which was at a wedding. I don’t suppose the hosts are too happy about the situation. The killer posed as a cameraman.

I wonder which party will blame which for the murder. Balaj had recently left the PTI, where he had started his political career, and joined the PML(N), and was supposed to have played a key role in the campaign of Attaullah Tarar for NA-127, Lahore-XI, in which he got 98,000 votes, beating the PTI-backed independent Malik Zaheer Abbas, who got 82,000 votes. That was the seat in which Bilawal got 15,0000 votes, which was incidentally a bit less than the margin of victory.

Well, it seems as if we are going to have a government at last. One of the costs of having Mian Shehbaz as PM will be getting Asif Zardari as President, complete with that flat cap which he sports on top of an overcoat and a muffler. Well you can’t wrap up too much against the cold in this weather, can you? And maybe the flat cap is a riposte to Mian Shehbaz’s qawwal’s topi, favoured by the late President Ayub, which was just a sort of sliver of cloth on one’s head. Anyway, while we can just tolerate Shehbaz taking oath in that cap, I’m not sure Asif should take oath in his flat cap, no matter what the weather.

With the formation of the new government, I couldn’t help noting the irony of PTI leader Gohar Ali Khan’s statement that the IMF programme would be at risk if the people’s mandate was not respected. What did he mean? That a PTI government would go, cap in hand, to the IMF, but that a non-PTI government wouldn’t? Well, the non-PTI government being formed would have Shehbaz go with qawwal cap in hand, and Zardari with flat cap, so long as they got the money.

Anyhow, Barrister Gohar probably has other concerns now. It seems that Mrs Imran Khan is not going to be left behind. There are no longer threats against Imran’s life, but there are against hers. It seems that the revival of the Pakistani film industry continues, with this demonstration of the plot twist. The attempt on her life, it seems, was carried out by the superintendent of Adiala Jail in connivance of the cook, who served her substandard food. I assume young Balaj Truckanwala had no complaints about the food at the wedding. Though I think he was killed before they served dinner.

The meeting of the Punjab Assembly showed that whoever had been going after the PTI had been less than impressed by its independents’ performance in the polls. Its original candidate for CM, Mian Aslam Iqbal, hasn’t turned up in public, not even to take oath as an MPA, for fear of arrest. It had to put forward Rana Aftab. I think he should have been picked in the first place, for he is turning 72 this year, which makes him of the same generation as his leader.

The Sunni Ittehad Council had not yet been allocated the reserved seats it was supposed to get, but Maryam Nawaz has taken oath as MPA, and is expected to take oath as CM. Hopefully, she won’t wear either the cap favoured by her father Nawaz and uncle Shehbaz for their oaths, nor the flat cap in Asif Zardari’s possession, but will stick to the dupatta she has been wearing so far. And as far as her father imitated Zulfikar Ali Bhutto (which was by no means a slavish imitation), she should imitate Bhutto’s daughter. And she should thank her lucky stars her father left her a political party to inherit, and not a blood feud, and can never be too grateful to the Almighty that she is the grand-daughter of the industrialist Mian Sharif,and not of Billa Truckanwala.


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