A smiling face

smiling Face Latif Johar

The surprising tip is that how the entire world observes such a big issue without taking notice, specially the human rights, where it can play a vital role in preventing people die of hunger strikes

Mohammed al Balushi

THE tent was located near the road, where some rickshaws, vans and cars were seen on the road passing in different directions at Karachi Press Club. A big colourful lorry was also seen parked nearby and which had different designs on it and looked like a bride. The designer must be a creative person, I said to myself. Initially things were looking vague for me and I didn’t understand what’s happening.

I tried to read what was written on some banners and posters around. A message read as “Hunger strike, till death”. Reading more banners, which stated that one of the students had been abducted, namely Zaid Kurd, and Latif Johar is asking for his immediate release.

Can he survive for a week, 10 days, 15 days and or a month, without food? I asked myself, after seeing him lying in front of a fan, which was not working and giving any air, may be because of no power supply or may be the fan needs to be repaired. Some thoughts came in my mind.

A half full jug with some glasses were seen near him. He was thin, his body was weak, while moving from his sitting position, and there is no energy in his talk while he was speaking with some journalists, explaining his mission which was “Mission must go on, I stay alive or die”.

He is a student, just completed his BA, as he introduced himself to the media persons. He is Latif Johar, a young student, as he called himself. Some women were too sitting around him on an old mat covering their faces as per their tradition and they must be his relatives, I thought.

On April 30, The Express, Tribune and some of the newspapers published an article on Latif Johar’s hunger strike, a young student. I don’t know for how long a person can survive without food.

The theory of Dr Maslow suggests that the physiology is the fundamental need of a person to survive. Will his demand be fulfilled, or he is going to die during the hunger strike?

In this case, Dr Maslow’s theory is invalid as food might not be everything for some people as they rather prefer death for accomplishing their demands.

Can someone be persuaded to relinquish him from the hunger strike? Can hunger strikers accomplish their goals at the end? Intellectuals throw such questions, indicating that such strategies are a kind of idiocy. They might be right; it means that there is a half opportunity that they might be wrong as well. I came to know that hunger strike is one of the methods and tools of non-violence resistance or pressure in which participants fast as an act of political protest.

Latif Johar must be having similar concept which he is practising. The history recorded that on September 13, 1929, J N Das died during a hunger strike in jail, who was a comrade of Bhaghat Sing of India, and also in 1980, in Ireland seven prisoners participated in the first hunger strike which ended after 53 days.

The surprising tip is that how the entire world observes such a big issue without taking notice, specially the human rights, where it can play a vital role in preventing people die of hunger strikes.

Have you ever judged what forces people to go for hunger strikes, even till death like Latif Johar? Is there any way to find solution where such things should not happen? Can human rights activists visit and sit with such hunger strikers till death and find out the root cause and bring effective resolutions.

In one of the interviews of Latif Johar, in which he had said that: “I love to live, I love my life, I am one among my poor family members, but I found no solutions, and no other way and alternatives therefore I had to take this step, though it’s hard.”
He looks like he was going to welcome a beautiful death, as it was shown from his smiley face.


Courtesy: Oman Daily Observer 


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