Original Articles

Karachi – by Omar Alavi

I lived in Karachi without actually living in it. I shunned it for the most part. Thought of it as a passing fancy. Took a bite, moved on. But you can’t really move on. Karachi is like part honey part manure disguised as honey. It lingers and leaves a taste. You can’t get away completely. It leaves a mark on the spirit. Viva Karachi.

Karachi lives in the heart of the mind somewhere. It comes out and defeats the present with the force of History.The soul of Karachi is elusive as it should be. Its inhabitants are morphed yet each lives in seclusion from the present. Today is elusive too. This moment lives in that mind and is made up of memories of a past half-lived half crept and a nightmare of the future mired in the lived-crept lifetime! Thus Karachi’s moments are in the celluloid of the mind. Dramatic, Black & White, they are in the story of its people

They say Karachi lost its cool somewhere between the fiasco of 1977 and the fires lit in the heart while it burned in 1995. Yet I see a resilience in the spirit of Karachi. When you go in search of the city that lit up the eyes once upon a time you find citizens with fortitude waiting to tell their stories. You find them in the heartland of Saddar, around the spear of the Tower, along the coastline lined up with fishermen, old men sitting down with a gleam undefined and the young who inherited a part of its spirit from their forefathers, the teddies who are now vigorous white-collar and the hippies who now don sparkling and creased shirts. Then there is the rubble which upon close inspection is crying out for the architecture that once stood erect with nuance and inflection. Karachi is there to be witnessed in its glory whether its through nostalgia or through the remnants of its character in People. Viva Karachi