Self-made and white elephant

Dr Humayun Huma

Some people annoy rather reject my plea with harsh words when I use word ‘self-made’ for such people who are not born with silver spoon in their mouth but gain respectable positions in society. I strongly believe that Allah is khaliq-e-haqiqi and the real creator of human beings and the whole universe. At the same time he grants great qualities and mental power to some people, resultantly they gain marked positions and live a satisfied and successful life, that’s why I consider such people the icons of society and their footprints must be followed.

Few days back one of my colleagues Guleem Shah passed away and his sad demise reminded me some old stories. We both remained in service at the Government College Mardan for a long time. He belonged to a remote village of Mardan and was the son of a daily wager. He hardly completed his early education upto matric. Then he shifted all alone to Mardan city and got admission at the Government College Mardan on merit basis. He was remitted fee and he also got merit scholarship. At the same time he started private tuitions in his spare time, where he lived I do not know. Only this much is in my memory that in summer vacations he used go to Tarbela Colony and worked in the clubs as pots cleaner.

With the passage of time he did B.A and got admission in M.A Economics at the University of Peshawar. Prof Dr Abdul Mateen, the Chairman of Economics Department at Peshawar University was very kind to him and always helped him financially. Just after doing M.A, he was appointed as a lecturer in economics and he joined the Education Department. He was very hardworking and that’s why he got popularity among the students in a very short span of time.

Guleem Shah was very interested to join the civil service of Pakistan, so he appeared in the provincial competitive examination but he was not selected, despite passing the written examination with flying feathers. It was General Zia regime and General Fazl-e-Haq was the Governor of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province.

He told me that what should he do as he was sure to be selected in the competitive examination. I advised him to send an application to the Governor for rechecking of his papers and he did so. General Fazl-e-Haq Sahib immediately ordered the concerned quarters to put all the relevant files on his table. He reviewed the case and came to know that Guleem Shah had secured second position in the written examination but was hardly awarded passing marks in the interview. General Sahib immediately ordered the authorities for his selection and he was sent for training to the Civil Services Academy, Lahore.

General Sahib also ordered to revise the list of all the rejected candidates and it was astonishing that many of them were selected. However, unfortunately such stories are still repeated again and again in the Public Service Commission and that’s why I ask the tabdeeli government to look into the matters of this white elephant.

The writer is a senior columnist, author, poet, playwright and educationist based in Mardan, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa. He can be reached at:

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