Monday, September 24, 2018

DFW ROADS NEED QUALITY REPAIR AND REGULAR MAINTENANCE


September 24, 2018

 By Saeed Qureshi
While there is vast network of the highways and smaller roads, the standard of repairs of the roads linking locations in DFW metropolis is patently quite unprofessional, rough and risky. The city and the country administrations take a huge pile of various kinds of taxes to provide the civic and municipal comforts and facilities efficiently and hugely. One can see the 121 and George Bush Turnpike built in the near past as keeping inter cities traveling fast easy and convenient. These additionally facilities are good boon to streamline and ensure the easy flow of commuters of all hues and cries.

There can be various reason for such a lapse causing sufferings to the countless commuters in DFW metropolis. One could be that unprofessional repair companies or individuals are hired which charge less money than the truly professional organizations or parties.

Secondly no checkup is carried out to determine of the job assigned to these groups was carried out in accordance with the laid down rules and requirements. The city and county governments might not have taken the repair work seriously as the building of the roads or resurfacing the main roads, highways and autobahns was more important than merely reaping the broken or damaged roads.

What happens to the countless commuters is that their tires go flat or wear out sooner than completing their normal span of remaining intact and serviceable. However, the cost to the overall body of the vehicles is costlier caused by the persistent daily erosion of the surface of the tire by the ditches, holes and pointed corners of the eroded place.

As daily traveling on roads with rough and eroded surface not only caused earlier wear and tear of the wheels but also cause mental shocks to the drivers and as well slow driving and damage to the parts of the body especially the system that has to be applied on these countless places almost every day.

Th speeding vehicle fall into the worn-out places with a thud and then come out by applying more pressure on the accelerator each time. Such surface erosion and potholes, a few years back, were witnessed on the smaller street roads but now one can also be seen in the intercity highways, freeways damaged and broken.

During the rains the situation bets more problematic and tedious. The rain water deposited in the cleavages and holes gets splashed and falls on the vehicles’ bodies and framers. Besides getting in the whole and coming out for a vehicle also erodes the tires which ultimately have to replaces putting additional financial cost to those commuters who may not be financially very well off.  The roads that are resurfaced or a new layer is placed or a ditch is filled remain uneven and therefore cause jerks and jumping of the vehicles up and down and sideways. If the respective city and county administrations and the departments in charge of the repair work take a survey of the roads big or small, highways and city roads they would find countless such faults and uneven sections. It would be rather pertinent and advisable for the county and city administrations to take a survey of all the roads to check the bumps and high and low and rough and uneven sections.

Some time back I wrote another article after the competition of the Georg Bush High way. I had noted that sections and portions of the that magnificent turnpike didn’t have smooth tracts on many places. Not only I but countless other commuters must have noticed and suffered the jerks on the uneven sections by traveling on that highway regularly or occasionally. Mercifully some of the sections were later resurfaced and their level there brought even with the even portions.

It appears that that not much of attention is given to the selections of the right and professionally compartment and the experienced parties and firms to build or repair the mauled highways and normal roads. I wonder that in the United States where merit, competence and expertise is the touchstone in services, such a gross negligence is being shown and practiced in proving good roads between the cities and within the cites causing a lot of frustration and disturbance to the commentators even in the modern age of perfection and professional excellence.



One can see the Texas State Highway121 and President George Bush Turnpike built in the recent past are keeping inter-cities traveling fast, easy and convenient. These additionally facilities are good boon to streamline and ensure the easy flow of commuters of all hues and cries in much less time. 

Nevertheless, as a regular commuter on the roads and highways of Dallas and Fort Worth Metropolis, I have observed that most of the big and small roads have rough and uneven surface. While traveling across the Metroplex the vehicles receive jumps and fall back on the roads. There is a vast network of the highways and smaller roads, yet the standard of repairs of the roads seem to be unprofessional and not very useful.

 There can be various reasons for such a lapse causing sufferings to the countless commuters in DFW metropolis. One of the reasons could be that the unprofessional repair companies or upstart groups are hired who charge less money than the truly professional organizations or parties. The crude surfacing of the eroded or rough roads is a crying evidence of that bizarre situation.

Besides, it appears that no regular or periodic checkup is carried out to determine if the job assigned to the repair contractors was carried out in accordance with the laid down rules and requirements. The city and county governments might not have taken the repair work seriously as the building of the roads, the main roads, highways and autobahns was more important than merely repairing the broken or damaged roads.

That leads to the heavy cost on the repair of the body of the vehicles as the daily traveling on such roads with rough and eroded surface cause earlier wear and tear of the wheels, tires and body of the vehicles particularly the brakes. The slow driving and jumping of cars on uneven spots cause mental agony and shocks each time.

The speeding vehicles fall into the worn-out places with a thud and then come out by applying more pressure on the accelerators each time. A few years back such surface erosion and potholes were witnessed on the small street roads but now these can be seen on the highways, freeways, and intercity roads.

During the rains the situation gets more problematic and tedious. The rain water deposited in the cleavages and holes splashes and falls on the vehicles’ bodies and frames. Besides for the vehicles getting out of the holes and cleavages also erodes the tires. The tires have to be replaced putting additional financial cost to those commuters some of whom may not be financially very well off.  The roads are resurfaced by the hired groups without leveling the surface smoothly. 

We have seen that the new layers placed over a ditch remain uneven and therefore cause jerks and jumping of the vehicles up and down and sideways. If the staff of the respective city and county governments survey, they would find countless unfilled ditches and uneven sections which the contractors falsely show as done. It would be rather pertinent and advisable for the county and the city administrations to take a survey and ensure that the filling or leveling work was perfect and nice and in accordance with the book and laid down regulations. Rather such inspections and surveys should be done periodically to ensure smoothness and proper level of the roads without holes or cavities.

Some time back I wrote an article after the competition of the Georg Bush Highway or Turnpike. I had noted that various sections and portions of that magnificent Turnpike didn’t have smooth tracts on many places. Not only myself but countless other commuters must have noticed and suffered the jerks on the uneven sections by traveling on that highway regularly or occasionally. Mercifully some of the sections were later resurfaced and brought at par with the even portions. That brought a great relief to the commuters on this vital traveling artery between various locations and cities.

It appears that not much of attention is given to the selections of the right and professionally competent and truly experienced parties and firms to rebuild or repair the mauled highways and normal roads. I wonder that in the United States where merit, competence and expertise is the touchstone in services, such a studied negligence is being shown towards providing good roads between the cities and within the cities.

It would be preferable if various parties and surveyors can be employed or hired to check all the roads and highways to locate and identify and report defects of unevenness, jagged surface and potholes can be identified Besides the edges and linings of the roads needs to be straightened and leveled. At countless places the big and small roads need to have straight and even-leveled side lines. We have experienced that while exiting or entering, the vehicles go astray and fall from one surface to another because of variation in level of surface between them. Thus, a kind of upwards or downwards jerk is experienced which are certainly unpleasant and irritating and can cause accidents.

The city, and the county administrations and the municipalities charge various kinds of taxes and fees for a variety services such as the civic and municipal comforts and good roads. The taxes and duties can be increased provided the level of facilities like providing hassle-free roads are provided and streamlined for smooth traveling.

In this regard dire and immediate attention should be given to the jumbled-up and narrow roads in the so-called down towns where traveling and driving is nothing short of a nightmare at day time. The citizens have to come to these Down-Towns for a variety of pressing chores, particularly those who have to attend the court hearing and attend other offices for a variety of chores and unavoidable tasks.  The downtown of Dallas Texas and that of Fort Worth are awful examples of the difficulties that the commuters come across every day.




Tuesday, September 11, 2018

LET US PRAY FOR IMRAN KHAN’S SUCCESS


September 10, 2018

By Saeed Qureshi
It would be an unrealistic expectation that Imran Khan has a magic wand which he would wave and things would start improving. Nevertheless, under his leadership sooner than later, Pakistan would be embarking on the road to an overall progress and prosperity. Hopefully, the state building institutions would be washed of all or most of the dysfunctional aspects and sleazy contours which have been there in the Pakistan society and state ever since its creation in 1947. 

Granted that Imran Khan is a leader of his mettle and is absolutely sincere, a true patriot and embodiment of the commendable leadership qualities. Yet the challenges and tasks that he is faced with are also unusual, tricky, stupendous and extraordinary. As a matter of fact, he needs a prolonged space of time and planning and absolutely honest and committed team to fulfil his dream and mission of putting Pakistan in the comity of the developed and prosperous nations. I reckon that to fulfil this gigantic task and accomplish massive undertaking, he needs to win the next term and to remain at the helm for another five years.  If he leaves half way, the Himalayan goal which he is aiming at, cannot be accomplished in a single term of five years.

Granted that he is blessed with unconditional and voluntary support and unstinted cooperation from the armed forces as well as the superior judiciary. Nevertheless, one has to also look at the ground conditions that would prove to be hazardous and rather complex to be streamlined in a limited period of five years. It is not to doubt or underestimate his integrity, ability and resolve to catch the bull of misrule by horn. Still there might be unforeseen roadblocks and unexpected challenges that might be difficult to overcome in a short period of time.

He would find himself between the proponents of a secular state with religion confined to the personal level and those who may want the revival of the State of Medina, in the present times. He has already made this pledge and let us watch how he can turn Pakistan into a replica of the state of Medina established by the Prophet of Islam Hazrat Muhammad(pbuh) in 622 CE after his migration from Mecca to Medina.   

As a matter of fact, what he meant by establishing the state of Medina it is to revive and enforce the character and qualities of the Muslims in those blessed eras. There cannot be any comparison between the prophet of Islam and any head of an Islamic state. Yet what the Muslims have to do is to follow as far possible the tradition, the sublime life of the prophet and the tenets and beliefs on which he established the State of Medina. When Imran Khan aims at taking a cue from the contours of the state of Medina, he means by it the morality, integrity, truthfulness, honesty, spirit of sacrifice and unity to be imbibed by the Muslims and leaders.

The state of Medina also takes care of the minorities with regard to their rights and obligations, grant of equal status, and their security at the same time. But even if the real replica of state of Medina cannot be established, and Imran Khan succeeds in attaining that pristine goal by a fraction, Pakistan would move forward as a stable and righteous country among the comity of nations and would be respected for clean society and efficient and honest administration.

We all know what is the dream, plan, and manifesto of Imran Khan. He has unfolded his far-reaching reforms and milestone agenda in his August 19 inaugural victory speech. In that momentous maiden address, he categorically spelled out his vision and momentous mandate to restructure Pakistan and bring it in the comity of developed nations. He wants to attain and earn international support, respect and dignity for Pakistan. It would be fruitful for the people of Pakistan to go through his charter of reforms and ponder how groundbreaking and revolutionary these are.

His agenda for a new Pakistan consists mainly 27programs or reforms that are essentially far-reaching and innovative.  Even if a part of this agenda is implemented, a new prosperous, truly democratic and stable Pakistan is believed to emerge. That Pakistan may earn respect in the comity of nations. Pakistan, with Imran Khan as the prime minister, may not only emerge as a dignified state but hopefully, would have peaceful and friendly relations with neighboring’ countries mainly India, Iran and Afghanistan without bargaining Pakistan’s vital national interests.

It should be taken for granted that Imran Khan is thoroughly honest. He cannot be blackmailed or bribed. He is fearless, and undaunted. He is truly a patriot who loves Pakistan and the nation from the core of his heart. He is just an opposite of most of leaders who remained at the helm of power. The essential and sublime tradition of accountability, has been for the first time implemented, without any discrimination and fear or favor. If this ruthless and across-the-board accountability culture continues unabated, Pakistan would be ridden off the criminals and corrupt individuals and leaders. At the same time, it would have a salutary and positive impact on the integrity and honest functioning of the state building institutions.






Thursday, September 6, 2018

Rigging Allegations Must Be Investigated


September 2, 2018

By Saeed Qureshi

After winning 2018 general elections, Imran Khan the newly elected prime minister of Pakistan, in his inaugural address, delivered on August 19 made a solemn and firm pledge to hold investigation to probe the widely reported charges of corruption and votes rigging.

The opposition parties in Pakistan are raising hue and cry to demand the investigation to determine if the 2018 general elections were rigged or not. Hopefully, the PTI government and prime minister Imran Khan would stand by their commitment and probe as to whether the opposition’s allegations were valid or not.

Now vote rigging allegation is certainly a very serious issue by itself. If proven it could put the legitimacy of the 2018 elections in doubt. PTI, the prime minister’ party bagged 149 National Assembly seats leaving far behind the runner up party PMNL which could grab only 82 seats out of a total of 272 National Assembly seats. It should be remembered that the same kind of rigging allegations were leveled against the PMLN which won the three elections prior to the 2018 elections.

It should be reckoned as to which authority would be entitled and asked to conduct the inquiry and investigation into the rigging rigmarole which is not an easy task. The record at the elections centers could have been manipulated, wasted away or hidden by the interested party which in this case is the PTI. However, primarily it should be the Election Commission of Pakistan on which this onerous responsibility devolves.

If the case goes in case of the refusal of the government and the Election Commission to conduct inquiry or recount the votes, then possibly and credibly this thorny issue would be placed before the judiciary which could be no less than the Supreme Court of Pakistan. If Supreme Court orders an enquiry that might take quite a long period of time to finalize the outcome and its findings. This task of election rigging is not the first of its own kind in Pakistan. But keeping in view the rigid confrontation and strong discord between the winning party and the runner up PMLN together with other fringe political contenders such as Awami National Party, Awami Workers Party (AWP), Jamaat-e-Islami Pakistan, Jamiat-e-Ulema-e-Islam (F)., the situation may not subside till a verdict in clear and transparent terms is, handed out by the Supreme Court of Pakistan. Even another main political party “Pakistan People’s Party” may jump into fray.

There is also a possibility which ought to be kept in view that if the verdict of the Supreme Court is not accepted by the loser parties and they persist in unrelenting agitations, a serious law and order situation could emerge. Thus, there could be a leeway for the armed forces to step in to rein in the cataclysm and worsening law and order situation.

If that is the probable scenario then the country would be, democratically, back to square one. That development would be as the reminiscent of taking over power by General Zia against Zulfikar Ali Bhutto in July 1978(as Chief Martial Administer) and later from prime minister Muhammad Khan Junejo as the president from September 1978 to August 1988. Again, General Pervez Musharraf took over power from the PMNL government headed by Nawaz Sharif in October 1999 and ruled Pakistan first as the Chief Executive (October 1999-November 2002) and then as the 10th president until August 2008.

If the inquiry is instituted by the sitting government in Pakistan and the PTI government comes out with flying colors then it would be functioning on firm footing for five years. The political opposition would have no excuse to create fuss against the government headed by prime minister Imran Khan. With Imran Khan, the people of Pakistan have nursed enormous hopes to rebuild a strong and prosperous Pakistan. After clearing of the rigging stigma, PTI and prime minister Imran Khan could, without hindrance, implement the PTI’s voluminous agenda comprising of 27 ground breaking programs one of which is to fashion Pakistan on the format of the State of Medina. The State of Medina was established by Hazrat Muhammad (PBUH) the last prophet of God after his migration from Mecca to Medina in 622 A. D.  By all reckoning, the State of Pakistan would be a combination of the contours and foundations of a modern state as well as the “State of Medina”.