The recent report of Henley visa restrictions index reveals only thirty two countries limited to Africa, Bangladesh and Sri Lanka allow Pakistanis visa free access today. We are simply too big a security risk to do that and given Pakistan’s reputation as an epicenter of terrorism we can’t expect any of the rosy ones, the likes of US or UK to do that.
Odd as it may sound, a Pakistani gets shocked to even see there remain thirty two nations on the face of mother earth who are still ready to accommodate us given that almost every other terrorist attack manages to find a link to Pakistan.
Strangely, as early as the 70’s the people of this country had the freedom to roam around the world at will. For in that long forgotten era image of Pakistan was much less blemished and the tag of Pakistan carried a little more pride.
Thanks to the good old Zia all of that was soon to change for the rise of the warrior mullah ensured that Pakistan entered the twenty first century as an epicenter of terrorism. A nation feared, hated and pitied by the rest of the world.
For now from facing abuses of terrorism as an international traveler to being denied a visa for even the innocent purpose of education, Pakistanis have learnt the bitter way what it means to be villains in the international arena.
And change seems highly unlikely. The mullah will not understand and the government seems unlikely to stop our lovely mullahs anytime soon. As for commoners like us, well when we have managed to get across these issues for the past sixty seven years or so, waiting more shouldn’t be a problem. Thus the No entry sign for us at foreign airports remains.
And most importantly if truth be told, the Pakistani nation, brilliant as it is, manages to sneak in anyway. Be it through education, paper marriage or any other means our diaspora has learned to accommodate itself. In these matters maybe we are a gifted nation.
For the time being let’s hope the list of those thirty two countries doesn’t shrink any further and our beloved Mian sahab’s recent action against terrorism does bear some fruit.