Wednesday, June 25, 2008


By Mahtab Bashir

It was the most embarrassing moments of my life while standing at Sales & Customer Center of one of the leading mobile phone connection provider of the country. My cell phone was mute during the whole day as it never was since half decade ago when I got this connection. Since then, I have never changed my cell Number no matter it is available on dirt-cheap rates from different connection provider companies displayed on different places from shops to carts.

Being a shy off boy- especially against the girls, I felt in hot water, when I told customer center representative that I didn't receive even a single miss-call from last 2 days. She enquired the Number of my cell phone, she was told confidently and her prompt reply was, "sorry sir! Your number is blocked on indictment of miss-use and making obnoxious calls." She said to me with eyeball-to-eyeball contact in intermingle words of Urdu-English with a strange smile on her face. I wanted to leave that place as soon as I heard that… as the word "obnoxious" means more then death to me. Misuse? Obnoxious calls? Are you sure you entered the right No? I wanted to repeat the digits of my cell number, I asked her in faint voice. Yes sir, I'm sure, she replied hurriedly. Please tell me how can you help me in unblocking my number, now? I wanted to make the last question with innocence at my extreme. She told me, "sorry sir, I can not help u here, u will have to visit our main office". Is it at Blue area, I asked, yes absolutely. Ok thank you very much. And I left that place with perspiration flowing down to my temple even in the presence of split air conditioner running on 15 C'.

Within a few seconds, I was on my way to blue area office with the feelings that I will have to repeat the same sorry story to persons there.. Oh my Lord!
As I pierced through the doors, an attractive lady greeted me, I told her precisely why I'm here for before she provided me a ticket No of my turn. My brain however never stopped thinking, what should I say to customer services representative? I peeped around on different counters of the outlet with prayers on my lips, "O Lord, please make my turn on any male representative's counter". It was not because I admitted my boo-boo because I am afraid of girls but I know well, I won't felt comfortable expressing my 'gloomy tale'. My prayer was not heard. "Ticket No. 164, please come at the counter No.5" a lady's voice broke the silence. Before I moved forward, I glanced who is on the counter, male or female? It's female again.

I started of speaking well ahead of that lady before she asked me the reason of my visit. "Well… before telling you this, I want to share a back ground of my story, madam", I said. Sure, sir, please, she stared at me and said. "A couple of days before, one of my intimate friend requested me to give him my sim card to use a package with the name of Ladies first starting from 11 pm with the rate of Rs. 5/ hour. I generously gave him as I was engaged at night in making my official assignments. And he went away with massive thanks. Next morning, I inserted my sim card back to my hand set. After few minutes, I received an sms from you people to avoid blocking my No as it is caught with making obnoxious calls. I was stunned over it for a few minutes. Later, at evening time, I met up to the same friend and asked him whether he misused my number with the firm believe that he spend time on making calls to wrong persons especially to some of girls. He replied plainly, No I never used your No. on any girl. Are you sure, I asked. Yes, trust on me dear, he replied to convince me. Alright, then how this SMS came my way? I don't know, he said. Ok it doesn't matter. Next night again, same friend of mine requested for the same cause and I repeated my act. And the next morning, I was happy not to receive any SMS of same nature with NOT TO GIVE MY SIM even to this friend for the third time. And I did not get any SMS neither any call since evening. AT evening time, I went to one of my other close friend's house to accompany him for a regular walk. Before we stated our long walk, he asked me, I tried to contact you thousands time but every time I got the answer, "the No you have dialed is not responding at the moment, please try later". Why it is off? I swiftly put my hand to my pocket and get my cell phone out of it. NO dear, its On. Then why I got the same reply time and again? Wait wait.. let me check… I put OFF my mobile phone and again put that ON. Now try again… Nahi yar mahtab… it's the same answer. Give me, let me check, now I took his phone and made the call with my cell phone in my other hand. Now I'm confirmed, there's something wrong. My SIM is blocked? O God. I covered all the walking period with the same question in my mind, Ab kia ho ga? Kaisay unblock ho gi? Mainay to kisi ko uskay kehnay kay bawjood kabhi call nahi ki, log to mujhay kanjoosi ka tana denay lagay thay, because I hardly made any calls even to my dear ones'. Phie how it can be possible kay may obnoxious call karoon? Anywayz…

The girl representative told me, "sir, you have been warned through SMS already. I know she is right as I got SMS but I want to hide my mortification and I lied, No madam, ..... I didn't get any. "Its YOUR RESPONSIBILITY NOT TO GIVE YOUR SIM CARD TO ANY PERSON. Now u will have to submit a hand written application and it may take 24 hours in process." Now I feel she was in bad mood as she thought im the real culprit. OK maim, thank you. I submitted the application on the same counter to the same girl with sheer degradation.

On the very same night, I came across with the same friend of mine. Before I shared him the whole story, he said… "yar mahtab… thank you so much… mainay jazz No. ki nai sim apnay paiso say lay li hay. Thanx again". I said to him, oh… to yar pehlay hi lay leni thi. Bus yar mainay kaha jin paisao say SIM leni thi ..kion na un paison say easyload karwa kay 5 Rupay may ghanta bat hi kar li jay, came his reply. I said ok dear, enjoy. He said… Oye mahtab …100 Rupay may li hay mainay. And I said, hmm ok……….., SIM to 100-150 may a jati hay, but can you pay the price of one's honour, sanctity, ego, or integrity? Can you? And he was smiling.

P.S: it's over 24 hours but my same beloved No. not yet being restored, but I hope it would be restored earlier then Iftikhar Muhammad Choudhry, the CJP.

cell No. 0321-5048975

Masood Bhai from Yangon, Mayanmar comments':
Jun 30, 2008 2:32 PM
Dear Mahtab,
Hope everything is fine and OK at your end. We are well here.
I am receiving your articles regularly and after reading and marking the minor grammatical / typing mistakes, I keep them in my draw, but today's article has compelled me to write something.
It is beyond my senses that how you gave your SIM to your INTIMATE friend. This incident, as you said, was not of money but was of credibility, sanctity, ego etc. but it is now my considered opinion that in Pakistan, nobody cares about these things, even your own relatives or close friends. Your "intimate" friend and "Heera" are the recent examples.
Anyway… I cannot imagine that a reasonable person like you can handover the SIM to others and think that it will not be misused, repeating the same second time even after receiving the SMS. I feel that the punishment you got was very little, they should refuse to open the SIM. Don't you know "Pakistanis" what they do with others whether in Pakistan or abroad.
I must request you to be careful, rather avoid such intimate friends. Don't repeat the same in future as
"Momin" Aik sorakh say do bar nahi dasa jata
Baqi all Ok here. How are the news at your end.

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