By now if you’re a Pakistani with internet access, you most definitely know about the arrest of Alamgir Khan, the man behind the controversial ‘#FixIt’ campaign in Karachi that he started to awaken the city’s government from its slumber so they do their job of making Pakistan’s largest city worthy of its title as ‘the city of lights’, that it once was.
So, for everyone who doesn’t know how this one man is doing more for the future of Karachi, and Pakistan, than any ‘legitimately elected’ body, here’s a little background on this hero.
This is Alamgir Khan
He is a politician, according to his Facebook page but he came into public limelight when he started his campaign ‘#Fixit’ which was an innovative initiative to drive the government to fix Karachi’s many open potholes.
It started with this
And then extended to fixing other problems like that of open dumpsters littering every corner of the city, garbage and cleanliness in general.
Interestingly soon after Alamgir Khan started his campaign, this happened
To be fair, this wasn’t officially the government’s response but soon after Alamgir started this campaign his father received a phone call from the police asking him to come to the Ferozabad police station in Karachi because there was a ‘hit and run’ case reported against a vehicle registered in his name. Coincidence?
But Alamgir continued on undeterred
In his campaign to make Karachi great again(borrowing from words from a certain American presidential nomination hopeful), Alamgir Khan kept championing the cause of waking up the government to perform its routine tasks of providing basic amenities to arguably the most important city in the country’s economic infrastructure.
Today was a landmark day in the #Fixit campaign
But not because it was a particularly happy occasion. Quite the contrary, actually. Alamgir was marching toward the residence of the Chief Minister of Sindh, Syed Qaim Ali Shah, in order to protest against the lack of action following his campaign by “symbolically” sending a message to the Chief Minister and the public of Karachi by dumping the city’s trash in front of the Chief Minister’s residence.
But then Alamgir was arrested by the police
As he carried out his “symbolic protest”, Alamgir was arrested. As soon as the news broke sometime in the afternoon of February 25, 2016 the Pakistani social media was swept away with videos, images, status updates, tweets, memes and whatnot of the arrest, Alamgir Khan and what was happening following the arrest.
Even after his arrest, Alamgir is in high spirits
And this image of him proudly showing off his shackles is proof of that
This guy is arrested due to cleaning Filth spread by Saye Sarkar???? #ReleaseAlamgirKhan pic.twitter.com/Tq0JzH9bOD
— Farrukh Habib (@FarrukhHabibISF) February 25, 2016
And social media activists have launched a call for the release of Alamgir Khan
His Facebook page called for a gathering in order to demand the release of Alamgir Khan in front of the Civil Lines Police Station in Karachi and the top trend on Twitter in Pakistan, at the time of publishing, was #ReleaseAlamgirKhan
#ReleaseAlamgirKhan we proud on Alamgir khan for his brilliant fix it campaign.it should b continued. We're with you pic.twitter.com/MGlFbDiYof
— Sumaira Jamil (@real_sumaira) February 25, 2016
Sadly, like most things, this issue has been politicized by people calling Alamgir Khan out for his association with one particular political party.
However, political affiliations aside, his campaign is indeed a valid one. There is an immediate need to address the very important issue of provision of not only a clean, safe environment to the people of Karachi, and the rest of Pakistan, but basic amenities that are the duty of a government to provide its people are also what are immediately needed.