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    To The Safest Person In The Country – A Safety Check

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    “My life is still in danger” – says who? – the “Safest Person” in the country. Your life was never in danger. Still isn’t. You are safe. Always were. There are at least a dozen guards around you. A series of security personnel circumambulating the physical space you occupy. The jacket of one of your passports is bound to the land of free, the other from the land of virtue.

    Your life is not in danger.

    You remain untainted by a blissful ignorance of natural laws. You have no conceptual understanding of living and the dead. What you don’t know cannot hurt you.

    Your life is not in danger.

    Remember how the institution that made you an occupational hazard, licensed your presence as a therapeutic authority. And we did those breathing exercises– never mind. You’re breathing without struggling. So really, your immune system, your blood circulation, your respiratory function is all in order.

    Your parents called the same people so that you’re not alarmed by strangers. People who are still struggling for reason and some semblance of humanity didn’t tie you up. People who are strangers to what needs to be done with something that escapes their imagination. You were within a cocoon of familiarity, an authority on ‘who gets to be the odd one out’. They tie you up, it’s an unpleasant sight, not gruesome. It has to be framed, after all. No one screamed when they saw the image.

    Hence you remain part of all that which can still be looked at. The systemic insanity of the cartographers that charted a roadmap to your safety is still in place. There are wildly contrary statements issued by Tahir Zahoor Ahmad who declared you schizophrenic, on drugs, one day when you were in rehab. A few days later, he denies knowing you and then he claims that his ‘team’ showed up at a crime scene, tampered with evidence. His team was dealing with a murderer and one of them got injured. A moment of silence and then few for the injury that insults common sense.

    Only if you’re from the same party where this chick is dead because your friends had one, too many, or if you just walked out of your third lobotomy, you’ll tamper with evidence. You’re either an accomplice or dead from inside. He’s both, by the simple fact that his senses remained in the Neanderthal part of his brain and neither him, nor his team, or anyone from your family called law enforcement.

    No one is really following up on the operational status of Therapy Works. It’s still operational in Karachi, Lahore, Multan and Bahawalpur. It’s currently housing 7 inpatients in Karachi. No one in their teams have more authority than administration and coordination. They have one clinical psychologist in Karachi who got her degree from The Xxx Hyderabad, India. She is on a maternity leave. The psychiatrist in Islamabad, Dr Najma is 83. She is not available after 3 pm on Tuesdays and Thursdays. The rest of the week she does not exist at all. Dr Das remains in Karachi. None of the immediate people around you are authorised by Medicine, education or even compelled by the need i.e. marketing as a mental health facility to bother with what is not bothering you, either. Living. Your parents who knew your criminal record, your domestic staff.

    Your life however is not in danger.

    All your friends, mutual, exclusive, have held their silence. Outbursts of speaking out are based on trending tweets. They knew, they didn’t bother. They’re not really bothered now. They are all part of the great unbothered.

    Your life is not in danger. However, your public appearances are evidence if nothing else. You appeared in public, just that to begin with and no one thought to set you ablaze.

    Your life is not in danger

    You get to say things, and we listen.

    Your life is not in danger

    There is no outrage. No lament.

    Your life is not in danger

    When they ask, they want to know your relationship status. They mostly question why would a grown woman not tell her parents her exact location, or what is it that she must be doing at a man’s place. Does she drink? How many shirts does she own with sleeves? Or, how many shirts did she own, anyway!

    Don’t you worry, they don’t need answers. It’s only rhetoric. They are voices in their heads that have already decided on the order of things. So she is under scrutiny. No, don’t get upset. It’s not about Noor. But then you’re not. Upset, that is. About Noor, the girl you murdered. You beheaded her. You sliced off the oxygen supply, held her down, firmly when she struggled for breath and as life left her body, you continued and sawed through her spine.

    Your life was never in danger.

    You drive to the place where they don’t wonder about the tools you buy, they’re known to never talk, a reputation that is a source of pride for their custom. You being customary, sit back, sip tea, have a smoke – oh wait, you were trying to quit them and chewed nicotine gum. You were slightly irritable the first week after you quit, this week you’re beginning to feel better than ever. I remember this from one of our sessions. I apologise, no slander intended. It’s just memory fails me after a day of trying to stay alive.

    I belong to the endangered part of life. When you attack, maim, torture, rape, kill, I am told to wear more clothes.

    My life has always been in danger.

    I have to never react. Boys will be boys. I am the provocateur.

    My life is still in danger.

    I will now be vigilant. As per the recent wisdom imparted by my aunt and the Prime Minister. Because there is such a thing as a less vigilant woman in this country. If I scream in terror, I’m hysterical, crazy, my “no” is an insult. My mere presence is an invitation.

    My life is dangerous.

    You, safe, sound and smug, are aware of your longevity. Hence you don’t question what is it that you need to be scared of. When you think you are anonymous again, out of sight, part of another normal, and in desperate need of your next fix. You will hunt again then, your life is not in danger anymore but you’re only alive when you kill.

    Why aren’t you scared of living?

    When they tied you up, took your picture, why weren’t you splattered with the blood of your slaughtered? The vigilant notice details where the devil resides.

    Why aren’t you scared of the endangered?

    Maybe you get to live forever. With no one left to kill.

    Why are you scared of death?

    NoteZahir Jaffar was my therapist at Therapy Works. He was lisenced by the organisation to work with in patient clients in their Islamabad rehab. I was abducted by the team of administrators twice, injected and tied up. During my time there I have personally known three men from influential families who were kept in rehab only because their security protocols had to be established. Two of the three victims were women. The Karachi rehab remains functional, with one practicing psychiatrist. No one else has a lisence to administer medication. Currently there are 7 inpatients.

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