This is what I wrote to Ayaz Amir regarding Ardeshir Cowasjee (The Master Planner – The Doer of Things!)
From: Shaikh Muhammad Ali
Sent: Sunday, November 04, 2012 6:30 AM
Subject: The Devil – The Saint (All in one)
Dear Ayaz Amir Sahib,
A very dear friend of mine (about 8 years older than I) from Lahore, a retired Naval officer from Navy War College, KHI who is posted as a Research Fellow now at the Navy War College, LHE; Cdr. Azam Khan (An officer and a gentleman) has forwarded this mail to me which provokes me to read your article. And as always, you continue to inspire me with your straight forward, to the point, crisp and yet blunt rhetoric which is targeted towards the morons who happen to be our current leaders. I hardly get the time to read newspapers and watch the idiot box these days since it is full of the crappy ‘Salala’ and the ‘Malala’ – ‘Topi Drama’ if I may (Although I feel sorry for the young girl though who has apparently been used as an escape goat). I am amazed as to how our poor not-so-literate nation is taken away for a ride by these blokes which you & I both know are paid by whom and how much.
If there are two people, who inspire me with their writings are One, Ardeshir Cowasjee (My Alma Mater from BVS) and Two yourself; Sir. Lately, Cowasjee Sahib has not been writing and I hailing from Karachi too, am deeply concerned about his health. May God almighty forgive his sins (He being a poor Parsi, a fire worshipper and going straight to Hell as per the interpretation of the Religion by the Mullah) but I must hasten to add that I would love to surrender my seat in heaven (if I am going there in the first place) for him sitting down, no questions asked. Laughter.
I was overwhelmed to learn from my Sufi circles after ‘Tahajjud’ this very morning that Ardeshir Cowasjee Sahib is the ‘Qutub of Karachi’. I just knew it. Having worked the way that he has been doing and kicking some arse by this Mard-e-Mujahid did give me hints that he has to be sitting on such echelons of Tassawuf. I wish I could rush fly down to Karachi and kiss his hand. I also have been given a hint that his days are numbered and he would be flying out any time soon. I just pray that he remains any longer with us to do the good work that he is doing. He is indeed a rare species.
Somewhere along the line, I lost you Sir since you stopped writing for DAWN (for reasons known to you only) but I; born with DAWN (not because my father worked there for some 20 odd years) have come to learn that if there is one English daily in this country; it is DAWN. The name ‘Jang’ simply puts me off since War is the child play of the Fauj, Taliban and the Imperial USA and the supreme commander who dictates the world currently is Obama Bin Laden (Oops) needless to mention who pulls his strings and licks his behind which again you and I both know.
Long story short, please continue to inspire us with your pen, desktop, notebook (whatever) since there are no two thoughts about the pen being mightier than the sword. And I must hasten to add that after reading (since I was seven), analyzing, travelling like a maniac, performing Haj at the ripe age of 17.8 in 1982, observing; I have picked up the sword since the last 4 years and am on a killing spree like Paulo Coelho and Robert Fulghum since August 2008.
Here is my latest miracle. Hope you enjoy it. And I am extremely sorry to have pestered you and that too so early in the morning; with my nonsensical gibberish.
‘Shaikh (The Preacher, The Disciple, The Teacher, The Student, The Master, The Servant, The Saint, The Devil) strikes again. Laughter’!
Shaikh Muhammad Ali
The Wandering Dervish!