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Confucius, Kandahari Naan, and Canada

Zulfiqar Haiderali

First, this article has nothing to do with our theological differences with brotherly neighbouring countries. In fact, it does not even explain the intricacies of respective ratios of sesame seeds and tandoor heat.

Because this feature deals with the economic modalities of 18th century suburban Dera Ghazi Khan.

No seriously, we shall discuss the state of our nation's depleting young human resource to Canada with such emphatic vigor as we talk about mobile phone ring tones or the rising prices of Crepe Florentine at Café Aylanto. And why on earth should we not be worried about the rising level of migration as we are with the level of oil in kandahari naans?

There was a time -- I was recently told by my father one stormy night when we were trying to wave-off mosquitoes in our balcony and bees off our tea because there was no electricity in the house -- when people just knew how to live a gentleman's life… and encouraged their sons to do so: migrating to more gentlemanly countries abroad.

"You know, as Confucius said, 'I can't digest what I can't swallow!'" I protested, as I realized I'd gulped a pair of feisty mosquito and an agile bee. "What this country needs today is just a handful of visionaries who can see what great future we have if we stick together…" I captured a fistful of bees and tried to examine how I'd squashed them and pasted on my palm.

You see, there are more Pakistanis living in Canada today than sixty years ago: simply because there were no Pakistan then. According to a recent study conducted by a few concerned members of the Notary Public, the rise in fountain pen ink prices have trebled in recent years. And the reason they quote… not surprisingly… is the increased sales tax.

And not only that, recently the Americans totally ignored Pakistanis for their immigrant visa lottery scheme for next year because, as they claimed, more and more Pakistanis are coming to America from Canada than Pakistan itself!

Today, the Pakistani population in Canada is estimated to be roughly equal to the entire Western Europe -- a thousand years ago. This is an alarming increase! A recently measured estimate predicts that in the year 2020, there will be more Pakistanis in Canada then the entire Occupied and Azad Kashmir today!

All these indicators just point to one conclusion: there should be Canadian consulates in Quetta, Peshawar and Faisalabad. And that our fathers are not too wrong when mosquitoes bite and rain fills up your entire neighbourhood with water and sewer rats the size of Niagara Falls and three-leaf clovers.

URL to Canadian immigration page: http://www.zulfiqar.com/naan.html