Say ‘Thank You’ to a Pakistani Policeman

Posted on December 30, 2009
Filed Under >Adil Najam, About ATP, Law & Justice
Total Views: 89927


Adil Najam

Yesterday, for the first time, All Things Pakistan (ATP) named a “Pakistan Person of the Year.”

We named the Pakistan Policeman as the 2009 Pakistan Person of the Year. It is an expression of a debt of gratitude that is too often left unacknowledged.

Today, we write with a request to our readers: next time you see a Pakistani policeman doing his duty, can you please articulate this gratitude in a simple “Thank You.”

I believe reader Faraz Shams was the first one to suggest this, and I think it is a brilliant idea. This is something that will take very little from each of us, but may mean much more to these men at the front-line, who are used to hearing barbs rather than gratitude from those whose lives they are to defend – literally, with their lives.

Imagine the following: Imagine that you are a policeman guarding a building somewhere in Pakistan. A man approaches and you suspect this man has a suicide vest and is ready to blow himself up. You have two options: One, you can let him pass and he might bring untold murder and mayhem on innocent Pakistanis. Two, you could confront him, and the likelihood is that if he is on a suicide mission he will just blow himself up right there, and with him take you to your death!

What would you do?

Time after time, Pakistani policemen are making a choice that many of may find difficult. Putting their life, quite literally, on the line for your safety, and mine.

The least they deserve, is an expression of gratitude to replace the scorn and sarcasm we usually reserve for them.

We ask you, therefore, to do the following:

  1. Next time you see a Pakistani policeman doing his duty, just say a simple Thank You. Maybe shake his hands and say “Aap ka bohat shukriya, aap nay humari hifazat ki!” My guess is that no one has ever said this to him. You will make him feel proud and recognized. I suspect it will also make you feel good about yourself.
  2. Pass on this request to your friends and family and ask them to do the same. Give them a call, send them an SMS, digg, RT on Twitter, share on Facebook… just get the word out. Over the next few days, lets put a smile on the face of at least a few policemen. It is amazing, how much a small thing like this can mean, and how quickly it can spread. (P.S., if you know folks in the Pakistani media, please forward the request to them too: our media also needs to show more respect and gratitude to the Pakistani police).

It is, indeed, the least we can do. But let us, at least, do the least!

28 Comments on “Say ‘Thank You’ to a Pakistani Policeman”

  1. Junaid says:
    December 30th, 2009 10:46 am

    This is a great idea.

    I am certainly going to do it and am passing the word too.

  2. Dilawar says:
    December 30th, 2009 11:00 am

    I like the idea.

    Even if some in the police are corrupt, all are not, and especially the ones of security jobs are really doing a task that is full of risk. We should show our appreciation for it.

    Will do this and am now spreading the word also.


  3. Bushra says:
    December 30th, 2009 11:49 am

    Yes, it is time we started showing more respect for the policemen on security who are taking such risks for us. Why does the media never honor them like they do military people?

  4. Syed says:
    December 30th, 2009 12:00 pm

    A good idea indeed. It will raise the pride of the security force which is the direct target of murderers.

    Its funny to think that ‘kahi paisay na daina par jaeiN’ :)

  5. Syed says:
    December 30th, 2009 12:08 pm

    Not just a thank you, we should have a campaign raising salaries of police force and rangers who are just as important as Army fighting against the threat. The number of policemen in major cities is a shame… we are in immediate need of more security personals recruitment from the locals and an improved intelligence system.

    For now, I would gladly give extra chai paani to the hated tulla of the past. I now have all the respect and support for those who stand up guarding against the murderes.

  6. sundus says:
    December 30th, 2009 12:15 pm

    Yeah…Thanks aloooooot Policeman…And a special salute to the Police of NWFP..

  7. Raza says:
    December 30th, 2009 1:11 pm

    Sad that we have to run a campaign for something considered as common courtesy and done on a regular basis abroad! :(

    Thumbs up though. Dair aaiy durust aaiy!

  8. December 30th, 2009 1:16 pm

    Dear Adil,

    As usual, a brilliant idea! I shall pass your message on in every way I can.

    At the end of this tumultuous year, I thank you for presenting the best (and sometimes even the worst, but always in a thoughtful and incredibly sensitive way) of Pakistan to us each and every day.

    I wish you all the best for the coming year, and remain your diehard, card-carrying fan!

    Yours ever,


  9. Omer Malik says:
    December 30th, 2009 1:58 pm

    Dear Dr. Najam, I am happy to say that I followed your advice. I was in Jinnah Supper for some work and on my way back when at a checkpost near 7th Ave I pulled the window down and thanked the two policewalls there. They were surprised and had a big big smile. Yes, it made me feel good too!

  10. Zaheer says:
    December 30th, 2009 3:08 pm

    Excellent. I think this will itself give our policemen something good to think about and more pride in what they do.

    I just forwarded this to many friends and on my FB account.

  11. Aliya says:
    December 30th, 2009 3:18 pm

    Dear ATP Editors, please also send this to the media channels. I really think they should also do more to honor our police.

  12. sidhas says:
    December 30th, 2009 5:06 pm

    Great idea. I have sent message to all my family and friends. Hopefully, the will spread the message.

  13. Jabran says:
    December 30th, 2009 5:21 pm

    Thanks, I’ll try to make a video and upload it on my Youtube Channel , keep cheking it :

  14. Sajid says:
    December 30th, 2009 5:24 pm

    Agreed, police in Pakistan mostly faces criticism. Looking at what they are doing now is remarkable, let’s salute them and say a big thank you!!

  15. Garma garam says:
    December 30th, 2009 8:01 pm

    I took your advice. I told a shopkeeper whose shop was burnt on Moharram 10. I told him that he should thank the police…He started saying thank you in 15 different languages adding other words that I cannot reproduce…Ahhhh when will our nation learn their lesson

  16. Daanish says:
    December 30th, 2009 9:22 pm

    wonderful idea,love it !

    Thank you !

    Lets make” a Chain of Thank you” from Karachi to Peshawar,honouring those policemen who served and are serving so bravely with their lives in these times of terror!

  17. PAKISTANI says:
    December 30th, 2009 9:48 pm

    Great Idea. Things are not perfect anywhere, and indeed the police may have many things that they are still doing wrong. But teh fact is that they are standing up in teh face of terror and putting their lives in danger while others just sit on their butt and pontificate. The image you give of the choice a policeman has to make every day when confronted by a suicide bomber is very powerful. I do not know what I woudl do or these armchair chachas will do, but I salute those in Peshawar and Karachi and Islamabad and everywhere who have chosen to put their own lives in danger despite all the gallians we give to them.

  18. Waqas Akbar says:
    December 31st, 2009 5:15 am

    I really appreciate the movement. Please join the Facebook Group Say ‘Thank You’ to a Pakistani Policeman

  19. December 31st, 2009 7:19 am

    Very nice idea! I appreciate and glad to be part of this!

  20. Sadia Hussain says:
    December 31st, 2009 7:28 am

    Brilliant suggestion Adil! Every day we pass through these checkpoints indifferently while some have the nerve to argue with the policemen just so they might get a little late! We owe our lives to these brave men so if we pass on a few words of appreciation in think that might settle the debt a little!

  21. saba says:
    December 31st, 2009 9:13 am

    Haha, do you really think we should do this?? :P

    They would just look at us in amazement and think we are screwing them or being sarcastic.. :P

    I don’t know if its an effective way to make them feel proud and recognized like you think, but it may him feel guilty that he doesn’t do anything for us.. :P

  22. ASAD says:
    December 31st, 2009 9:19 am

    @saba. What a disgusting comment.

    You say ” it may him feel guilty that he doesn’t do anything for us”

    Maybe, next time you should try to stop a suicide bomber by giving up your own life!!!!

    What ungrateful people some of us are. Karna kuch nahin aur baatoun kay sher. Khuda ka khouf karo bibi!

  23. ShahidnUSA says:
    December 31st, 2009 11:04 am

    How about if I dress up as a pakistani policeman and you all say thank you to me :)


    I also liked the idea and even would go further and include all the “security forces”.
    If we get busy in knitpicking bad pakistani police, we will be making a long list until the cows come home.
    And we will be sitting miserable in some dark room growing old.
    Once I get the address, I ll make sure to send a nice postcard from San francisco.

    “Celebrate the good and the bad would follow “

  24. sidhas says:
    December 31st, 2009 1:00 pm

    You should also have a post for “Year of Political Party”. I would nominate MQM as party of 2009 because:

    1. they opposed Nizam e Adl 2009 regulation
    2. they opposed NRO
    3. the were able to make a breakthrough in Pakistani politics by getting elected in Baltistan/Skardu area.

  25. Irfan says:
    December 31st, 2009 6:56 pm

    Excellent idea. We are too cynical and to critical of everything and need to learn to appreciate those who do good, even in small steps.

  26. ARFEEN says:
    January 1st, 2010 8:46 am

    definitely , very good idea to acknowledge their dedication and commitment……surely gonna do this.

  27. Nazneen says:
    January 1st, 2010 11:58 am

    Great idea. I will certainly do and am forwarding to my friends also.

  28. Azheruddin says:
    January 2nd, 2010 1:31 am

    I am also happy to report that I today thanked three policemen, standing together, at a check post in Lahore. It felt good doing so and the smiles they responded with made my day. I hope I also made them feel a little better.

    Great idea.

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