Business Diversity in Rahimyar Khan

Posted on May 20, 2008
Filed Under >Owais Mughal, Photo of the Day
13 Comments
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Owais Mughal

Following photo appeared in the daily Dawn of May 18, 2008. It sohws a small business stall in Rahimyar Khan, Pakistan. What caught my attention to this photo is the sheer diversity of business being caried out from this small stall. The Urdu words written on the stall advertise for ‘desi’ Eggs, a public telephone call office and EZ load Cellular phone SIMs. All of these products and services are available here. And as if this was not diverse enough, the stall is also selling smuggled Iranian petrol at a rate much cheaper than Pakistan State oil’s prices. Note funnels and bottles full of cheap Iranian petrol on top of the stall.

ATP’s Related Post on Business Diversity: Technology and Health Go Together

13 Comments on “Business Diversity in Rahimyar Khan”

  1. Rasheed says:
    May 21st, 2008 1:43 am

    A disaster waiting to happen! A deadly combination.

    Seems from the picture it’s on the street, where kids and women with flowing robes and burkas pass by. I have no problem with the SIM cards and PCO, or even the farm eggs. The problem is the volatile and flammable gasoline open to the air and stored in thin plastic bottles.

    The combination is also dangerous. Incidents have been reported that cell phones have inexplicably caused fires at gas stations in various parts of the world. It prompted phone companies to get experts write statements in support of cell phone safety, such as on this link:

    http://www.exponent.com/about/docs/cellphonereport.pdf

    But if a petrol spill happens while a phone customer wants a SIM card, or batteries, installed these vendors could cause a lot of trouble.

    This is not to take away from the overall creativity of our small business enterpreneurs who can sell eggs, gas and phones at the same time :)

  2. ShahidnUSA says:
    May 21st, 2008 5:08 am

    Diversity or Dangerous city? Ticking bombs. Sorry

  3. Sabir says:
    May 21st, 2008 6:35 am

    I actually find this very funny. Thanks.

  4. Rafay Kashmiri says:
    May 21st, 2008 7:22 am

    @ Funny ??

    its funny because it looks like in Nigeria, where every week
    there is an exyplosion because of illegal and dangerous
    open air space for petrol, it might be funny in the way that
    all jehalats have the same colour.

  5. Babar says:
    May 21st, 2008 8:56 am

    Great pick Owais. This is good stuff for my blog too :)

  6. azhar aslam says:
    May 21st, 2008 9:15 am

    I never comment but this is too much. you are sad, commentators 1 to 3. get a life. when was the last time you got out of your ensconsed ivory towers to feel what the real life is like. how dare you stupidly go on about health and safety and find it dangerous and funny. and your info about cell phones is completley incorrect and based on spurious reports. There is NO evidence of this. You have shown your own ‘Jahiliyaat’ and shallowness by trying to portray the sellers and customers as naive and ignorant. And owais well done. keep them coming.

  7. azhar aslam says:
    May 21st, 2008 9:23 am

    Oh my GOD. I am even more incensed now. IThe following are the conclusions form the report quoted by Raheed Sahib. I rest my bloody case. All you inferiority-ridden babies leave them alone.

    ‘Conclusions
    Based on our analyses, the ignition of flammable vapors at a gasoline station by a cell phone is a
    highly unlikely event. While the cell phone cannot be ruled out as a potential ignition source
    under all physically possible scenarios, numerous other more likely ignition sources are present
    during the normal process of refueling a vehicle. This conclusion is supported by the following
    observations:
    1. No confirmed incidents of fires at gasoline stations started by cell phones have been
    found.
    2. Combustible vapors produced during fueling will not generally collect in regions of
    probable cell phone operation.
    3. The small openings present in a typical cell phone

  8. Rafay Kashmiri says:
    May 21st, 2008 11:40 am

    @ It is indeed ” artistic activities ” of our small vendors
    selling eggs, gasoline and SIMs side by side in open air,
    so that the disaster could be asd ” open air ” as possible,
    azher aslam should not encourage Owais Mughal,

    Ham to doobay hein sanam,
    tum ko bhi lay doobaein gay

    no thanks, not Nigeria please.

  9. Razi says:
    May 21st, 2008 1:29 pm

    What we are seeing here is an exercise in Survival. With the skyrocketing prices of every day necessities

  10. Asma says:
    May 21st, 2008 3:25 pm

    Plight of the time … agree with Razi here !!

  11. Faraz says:
    May 21st, 2008 7:55 pm

    To the people who have safety concerns about this: you have spent way too much time outside of Pakistan :P

    This a country where buses often carry three times the number of passengers they are designed for. Safety shimafety!

  12. Owais Mughal says:
    May 21st, 2008 8:17 pm

    I agree with Razi’s comment here that is most likely an exercise of survival. People are likely to experiment with any business that can fetch them money.

    I chose this photo because inspite of its underlying tone of economic woes it still brought a smile to me.

    Never before have I seen domesticated chicken eggs (a primitive product) being sold at a Public telephone Call Office which by the way was also sells smuggled petrol on the side as well as sells mobile SIMs. This all diversity of businesses carried out for the world all together on a roughly 5′x2′x4′ table.

  13. Rasheed says:
    May 21st, 2008 11:14 pm

    Azhar, in my original post, I didn’t mean that the cell phones could be the only cause of ignition of the petrol on the table, sorry if it came across that way. The obvious omnipresent smokers of Pakistan would be the primary concern.

    Regarding Rafay’s reference to Nigeria, where 100+ ppl died, check this out:

    http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/world/africa/7403525.stm

    In this case, the fire was caused by a bulldozer damaging the pipes, but occasionally, people make holes in the pipes to steal fuel.

    Sadly how true are the other examples a few of you gave, such as the poor riding on the roofs of minibuses :-(

    But please, Owais, don’t take these comments to mean criticism against you for having posted that picture. I think it is not only newsworthy but also necessary in order for us to stay aware about our streets and what peop;e have to do in order to make ends meet. And it is quite entertaining in the broader sense :)

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