Rasool Allah salallahu Alayhe Wasallam said, “A Muslim is a brother of another Muslim, so he should not oppress him, nor should he hand him over to an oppressor. Whoever fulfilled the needs of his brother, Allah will fulfill his needs; whoever brought his (Muslim) brother out of a discomfort, Allah will bring him out of the discomforts on the Day of Resurrection, and whoever screened a Muslim, Allah will screen him on the Day of Resurrection.” (Bukhari)
The tragedy that has unfolded in front of us over the past few weeks tells of heartrending stories of irreparable loss. Each family has a story to tell. Some experiences are shared here:
* An old man who belonged to Swat asked his family to leave their home in 10-15 minutes when he came to know about the orders of the Army. In the mean time, he rushed to pick his new born child who had been wrapped in a blanket. After covering some distance, the most shocking fact of his life became evident to him—in the panic and rush he had picked up a pillow instead of his baby! He could not go back to look for him because of the strict curfew there. All his life he will have to live with the bitter truth that his child was left there all alone waiting for his death.
* Another old man who lived on top of one of the Swat hills had a disabled daughter who could not walk properly. The man was so old that it was not possible for him to lift her up and take her along. So, he left her with food and all the necessary items close by. He does not know whether she is alive or not, whether she is safe or became a victim of the bombings of the Talibaan or the Army.
* A pregnant lady who was leaving the area with her family started having labour pains during her journey in a truck. As there were a lot of males around, they were asked to get down in order to leave the pregnant lady alone with other females–this moment was also very embarrassing for the other females. The poor lady had no other choice–she delivered the baby in a truck wailing in pain.
* A woman at Yaar Hussain Camp was a proud mother back home of seven sons happily living together in the same house. After this operation started, she had to leave one of her sons with her disabled husband and crying miserably she told us that six of her sons were now missing and she was not aware whether they were alive or dead.
* An old lady at Pirpai Village had a swollen stomach. On interviewing her, we came to know that she had a wound and still had stitches in her stomach. She had only picked up her X-rays and medical reports while rushing out of her residence.
* An old woman at Jalozai Camp shared one of the most touching stories. She said that she was among those who had given charity to victims of previous disasters. She had donated almost eight trucks fully loaded with wheat and rice for the Bajaur affectees, and now she was sitting in a tent empty handed and all alone.
* A young girl at Jalozai Camp came from an affluent family with vast assets and wealth. She got married just a week before this shocking incident in her life. She shared that she lived such a luxurious life that her furniture amounted Rs one lakh. Yet, she came to the camps with nothing in her hands.
* The University Campus, Peshawar has accommodated 214 girls in different hostels. On asking the warden about their requirements, a pressing concern to which attention was drawn was the lack of adequate food for those girls. She also spoke about the absence of government support for them. After discussing this issue, the team thought of two options for solutions: they could coordinate with the government agencies through the Vice Chancellor to get help, or provide assistance independently from Al-Huda.
Al Huda International Welfare Team