The unholy FIR

There is a special place in hell reserved for miscreants with a mean streak, perverts in politics, degenerates with no moral compass, scum with deviant sexual fantasies, rapists, those that sodomize in the company of debauched smut producers and of course, sinners of the hedonist persuasion. Yet in comparison to the Sindh Police, the aforementioned reprobates are merely a bunch of adolescent yahoos enjoying a summer in Dubai before college starts. The police in this province are a cut above the rest when it comes to the practice of malfeasance; I imagine that the nineteenth century Sicilian Mafiosi would be somewhat dejected by their own revenues when they realize that their collection of annual pizzu could easily be overshadowed by the coffers supplied strictly by chai-paani.

I haven’t always been this hateful towards these flea-ridden slimebuckets hired to protect and serve us, as during my childhood I viewed police officers with a certain amount of deference that comes easily to a child when he/she sees a man in uniform. However that phase did not last all that long, because I soon realized that my father was allowed to pass unpunished when he flashed his government ID card after breaking a red light. As I grew older and (surprisingly) wiser, I realized that these vermin were merely
vermin up for sale and you just had to quote the right price or look pathetic and pull loose change out of your pockets, for them to let you go. The proverb; the long arm of the law easily mutates to ‘the lacerated limb that used to pass for law,’ in this province or for that matter, considering our prime minister’s recent indiscretions, this country. How we got here is another matter entirely, one whose
diagnosis would require a cauldron of sociology, a dash of political philosophy, a teaspoon of psychology and a thimbleful of willingness to accept our own mistakes as a people. This recipe will have to be shelved for the time being as we well know that as a people (collectively) we do not make mistakes and are as such, perfect, but as individuals our transgressions would shame any over-sexed and depraved moulvi.

My transactions with the police were of the once-in-a-blue-moon variety and rarely did I ever get into any trouble; my obvious crime was being too unspeakably good-looking and ferociously charming, but these things really didn’t get me into much trouble. I had never been to a police station until it so happened that some street urchin who was handy with a screwdriver stole my car’s CD player. It’s quite an experience to be woken up at seven in the morning by a concerned, overweight and blubbering neighbor with little to no early morning fashion sense, to be told that he had just tried to chase down a little boy who was laden with a CD panel weighing about seven kilos. My first piece of advice to the heinously dressed old fart was that he should have been wearing tennis shoes; that was before I registered that there would be no music in my car for the next few weeks. I surveyed the damages; there was a broken window and a gaping hole the size of a dead star where my CD player panel used to be. I thanked the poor sod and asked him to pray that the pre-pubescent dingbat who stole my precious music machine should have his man parts struck by lightning right before he gratified himself for the very first time in his miserable life. He didn’t seem to like that idea so I walked back to my room and face-planted on the bed.

I woke up three hours later to find that my parents had somehow become aware of this debacle and were furiously cursing the thief through mouthfuls of fried eggs and toast. My brother was on the phone with an insurance agent who dolefully informed him that we needed an FIR to get our insurance claim. This development led us to deliberate as to who would go get the FIR and between two Pathans a question of this characteristic can lead to disastrous consequences. It started out with both of us expounding our theories concerning the division of labor around the house and rapidly transformed into an all-out brawl coupled with an exchange of expletives so malicious that any sailor worth his salt would have signed up to be tutored by us that very moment. Our ruckus really didn’t settle anything aside from rebuke from our father and a best-of-five rock, paper, scissors game. Needless to say I drew the shorter straw and was begrudgingly dispatched to the nearest police station.

I drove over to what looked like a police station but was actually a dilapidated primary school which the police had taken over due to the fact that the honourable twits that hold positions in our parliament are brain-dead to the extent that the idea of an educated workforce being more productive is beyond their booze addled conception. As I walked through the gate I saw three rooms which could hold about twenty people each and a handful of Neanderthals in police uniform who looked unapologetically confused about their own predicament and surroundings. It became obvious to me that by joining the police force one does not alleviate an existential crisis but rather exacerbates and extends it. I walked in to the nearest room and unwittingly hoped that salvation was at hand.

Inside, there was a derelict desk and behind it were two of the most abject and disconsolate human beings I had ever laid eyes upon. One of them looked like a toad that had just fed upon swarm of fruit flies; he had beady eyes, a slimy face and a shirt that seemed to be asphyxiating him. I half-expected a long tongue to shoot from behind his lips, snatch a fly and return from whence it came, after which
he would blink once to illustrate his satisfaction. The other was not half as bad as his friend, just that it seemed that he had forgotten the fact that he kept a beard and was unaware of the possibility that food could get stuck in it; the consumption of rice was apparently a source of much complication for this man. The desk they were sitting at was woebegone; it seemed as if two gay bears* had had their way with each other on it while referencing the Kama Sutra and keeping Caligula’s methods of libertine madness in mind. There was a police band radio in the corner and a smallish man hunched behind it, speaking gibberish excitedly into the microphone. I was certain the place was a circus and I had walked into the freak-show area so I started backing up, quickly.

That’s when toad spoke up, enquiring about my purpose; “I want to register an FIR.” Toad looked insidiously at his rice-peppered partner who smiled at me ingratiatingly as a grain of rice dislodged from his beard and fell upon the desk. It prevailed upon me then that this conversation was going to go nowhere but I was too much of an amateur to let the idea take root and so I persevered and told
them my story. As I gave them the details, the accidental rice field and the toad nodded solemnly and it seemed as if I had misjudged their powers of comprehension. By the end of my story I was lulled into a sense of security that these people, no matter how unorthodox and deformed, would be able to help me. Toad was the first to speak up and he introduced his cash crop riddled friend as Imtiaz and himself as Mubeen. Imtiaz took the floor and with great gusto explained to me the whole process of how the registration of an FIR leads to an investigation of monolithic proportions where many skilled police officers are employed and the perpetrator is generally apprehended. I was elated to have made such headway, until he scribbled his phone number on a piece of paper and directed me to tell my insurance agent to give him a call so that he could explain the same situation to him.

I was neither disappointed, nor angry, nor did I cry a little inside, but I did feel a sudden urge to shove my hand down that godforsaken swine’s throat and wrench his chitterlings out via his esophagus. With an almost blue-blooded repose I engaged the porcine monstrosity in front of me in a conversation about how I should get what I asked for because it was their duty as mandated by the state of Pakistan and that it was after all, the law. That’s when Mubeen launched into a tirade about how their hands were bound in these cases and that the law couldn’t be counted upon at all because of all of the hera pheri that existed within it. However if I had about five hundred rupees to spare, they would be more than happy to give me a roz-naam-cha, which is essentially a piece of paper with details of a crime and a Sindh Police stamp. If I were willing to get twenty two photocopies of it and spend a hundred more, they would distribute it among all the police officers who would carry out an investigation at their own behest. This cockamimee excuse of investigation was made even more depressing when I overheard the miniscule cretin in the corner speaking to another half-wit hoodlum over the police band radio exhorting him to distribute mithai to everyone due to the arrival of his newly born daughter. I hung my head thinking that if the poor child were to live to the age of eighteen she would realize that her father and his colleagues were nothing but a bunch of scab-infested pigs.

Taking note of my dreary surroundings I once again embarked upon what seemed like a desperate mission to get an FIR; with weariness I explained to them my predicament again, during which Mubeen did me the honour of blinking through it while Imtiaz regarded me grimly. After another bout of rationalizing I realized that I was banging my head against a wall constructed with bricks of asininity, mortared with dementia and painted with futility. Therefore I left these inconsiderate and impotent animals to their own devices, hoping that one of these days one of them would be mentally deficient enough to blow the whole place from here to high heaven.

I did not however admit defeat because I called my uncle who happens to be very well-connected in one of Karachi’s preeminent political parties and explained my situation. During the next couple of weeks he harassed countless police officers, graciously provided well-meaning death threats to others and spent two thousand rupees and delivered to our doorstep the fabled FIR, which was really a pre-printed form with indiscriminately placed check marks and illegible handwriting. If there is a moral in this tale then it is clearly the following; if you can’t beat ‘em, join the bastards and show ‘em what’s what!

__________________________________________________________________________________

This article was contributed by Omar Khan.

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