One day, by chance, I opened the bookshelf of my father who is an advocate. I took out an old file and glanced through it. My curosity was routsed on seeing an old newspaper within the file. On reading the bold top caption- ‘Decca falls – Pak Army made to surrender’, I was reminded of the old national tragedy. I was a small child at that time. My parents, some how, saved their lives and came down to Lahore and settled in Gulberg.
I was startled to read the other news. On my request the newspaper narrated the following story. I was born in Karanfuli Paper Mills in East Pakistan. I was in the shape of huge roll of paper. My early life had been full of painful operations and change of forms. I had no tongue. But when I became a newspaper, I started speaking many languages – Bengali, Urdu, English and Sindhi. Soon I became a world citizen on being exported to other lands. I was quick in learning I could provide all kinds of knowledge to the readers.
I was put through a huge printing machine and assumed my present shape of newspapers. Others of my brothers assumed shape of books. They were no more a piece of paper, a trash, but a treasure of knowledge for students and professors. How fortunate they were! But mine was a sad lot. People read and discarded me or sold in ruddi. I was put to rough and cruel uses. The shop keeper used me for trapping commodities, and the house wife, for making fire in the grate. The laundry man packed the clothes, and some gentleman spread over the recks of Almirah and cupboard. Other cruelly clipped me and at last I found my place in the stinking dust bins and rallos. I really felt sorry for the sad lot.
The paper heaved a sigh and stopped talking. I kept silent for sometime. As I was reading some titles, he began to speak again. There was change in his tone as he related some historical events that led to the disintegration of the country. At time he was on the verge of weeping when he related the political events, killing of innocent people, rape of women and burning of the houses by the extremists. I could not help shedding my tears.
Then he turned to my father and the kind treatment meted out to him. It was old Dawn. My father had preserved it for reference. He thanked his lot for most of his brothers had perished. When I asked the paper about the fall of Decca, he sighed and spoke, “The less is said, the better it is”. I asked, “Why?” He said. “It will expose many selfish politicians of the time.” He looked up and said, “There is justice in the Heaven”. I thanked the paper. But if left me to ruminate on his last remarks.