The book is of Orwellian prophetic nature. It is an eye
opener/ reminder to all of those who remember the 'good old
days' of early Pakistan.
When I read this novel about three years ago (for the first
time- on insistence of a friend--I had never watched any of
the TV serials), I was flabbergasted at the clarity with
which Shaukat Siddiqui portrayed the social evils
prevalent in our society. The novel got published in the
late 50s. He must have worked on it for at least a few
Characters like Niaz, Khan Bahadur, pick pockets, the
crazy professor, sweet talking office boss and the
creator of 'Skylark' movement can be seen in our society
even now. When I see people like Amir Liaqat Hussain,
Altaf Hussain, Malik Riaz, Zulfiqar Mirza, Asif Zardari,
Mian sahibaan, Maulana Fazl ur Rehman...I can not help
but think that these characters were seen and portrayed
clearly by Shaukat Siddiqui.
Such characters have always been there amongst us.
How do these forces get beaten? How does good prevail
over evil? Why do academically brilliant people like
Faiz Ahmed Faiz and Dr Abdus Salam get ridiculed and
hounded out and average college lads or drop outs like
Mian Nawaz Sharif and Asif Zardaris of this world get
to be our 'constitutionally elected' prime ministers and