New Delhi: There was an intense city-wide search on in Pakistan’s Gujranwala. Door-to-door searches, loudspeakers mounted on auto rickshaws and featured as the “breaking news bulletin” on TV channels. The town was looking for Gujranwala commissioner’s pet dog. Commissioner Zulfiqar Ahmed Ghuman ordered that the dog be found within 24 hours. All police officers and municipal officials left their respective duties and became busy looking for the dog. The German Shepherd, worth Rs 4 lakh, is now a “VIP dog”.
This is not unlike officers searching for Samajwadi Party leader Azam Khan’s lost buffalo some years ago, in Uttar Pradesh.
Pakistanis had fun comparing the State response to looking for terrorists and missing Baloch activists before the dog was found after two days of intense search.
بریکنگ: سرچ آپریشن کے بعد کمشنر گوجرانولہ کا کتا دو روز بعد مل گیا۔۔ ملازمین خوشی سے نہال۔ گوجرانولہ میں جشن کا سماں۔۔ pic.twitter.com/KdJ7Gh9CFT
— Waseem Abbasi (@Wabbasi007) July 29, 2021
The pet had gone missing from Ghuman’s house Tuesday. The gate was left open for barely a few minutes and the dog ran out. The house staff was reprimanded and the city officials kicked dust on the streets.
*Kutta ghoom hogaya* Gujranwala Commissioner's pet dog goes missing, state machinery is utilitised, including speaker announcements on rickshaws to recover the dog. pic.twitter.com/FcUV6qRHvo
— Naila Inayat (@nailainayat) July 27, 2021
— HUM News (@humnewspakistan) July 27, 2021
In one of the videos that went viral Tuesday, an autorickshaw mounted with a loudspeaker could be seen making announcements, urging people to immediately return the dog to the commissioner’s residence, when found; also warning them of stern actions, if the dog was recovered from their houses.
Pakistan’s ‘Azam Khan’
Many trolled the Pakistan government for “making the entire State machinery search for the top official’s lost dog” while some called commissioner Ghuman Pakistan’s Azam Khan.
Kutta 🐩 was playing hide and seeks with the employees of commissioner of Gujranwala…. 😂#کمشنر_کا_کتا_گم_گیا
— Raazalishah. (@SilentRaaz) July 28, 2021
Samajwadi Party leader Azam Khan had hit headlines shortly before the 2014 Lok Sabha election when he alleged that seven of his buffaloes were stolen, and sent a team of over 100 police personnel and sniffer dogs to hunt them. The buffaloes were found a day later but only after three cops were removed for ‘dereliction of duty’.
‘Kutta gum ho gaya’, public announcements made, entire state machinery made to search for top official’s lost dog in Pakistan Ajam Khans are not only in India but also in Pakistan police do run to search Bhains or Kuttas https://t.co/2Y3CB8c0tz via @OpIndia_com
— Jairaj Yadav (@yadavjr) July 28, 2021
Drawing parallels between the two incidents, Mce Zone Tuesday ran a story with the headline: “Pakistan Gujranwala Commissioner Zulfiqar Ahmed Ghuman Utilizes State Machinery To Find Missing Pet Dog Like UP Azam Khan”.
While one user wrote, “What UP did yesterday Pakistan does today”, another said, “How similar we are. #India #Pakistan”.
— Chouhan Sajad, چوہان سجاد (@SajadChouhan) July 28, 2021
— Dhrupad Shastry (@DhrupadShastry) July 28, 2021
#Pak: Meet Azam Khan of Pakistan… A pet dog of Gujranwala Commissioner Zulfiqar Ghuman went missing y'day after which police and Municipal Corporation officials launched a search operation😂 pic.twitter.com/1jGRNwWbwg
— Rahul Upadhyay (@rahulrajnews) July 28, 2021
Remember Azam Khan’s buffaloes? https://t.co/JJera2ZOv1
— Ravi Shankar (@etteth) July 28, 2021
Taking a jab at the Pakistani dispensation, a user wrote: “Now Pakistan police are going to chase the dog rather than terrorists..”.
— 𝓢𝓱𝓾𝓫𝓪𝓷 𝓛𝓪𝓵 𝓜𝓪𝓽𝓽𝓸𝓸 (@MattooShuban) July 28, 2021
“A nation where every day 1-2 Baloch youth goes missing and no one bothers. #KuttaGhoomHogaya #Pakistan”, wrote another Twitter user.
— Showkat Kashmiri شوکٹ کشمیری (@ShowkatKoshur06) July 28, 2021
Expressing anger over the misutilisation of the State resources, several Pakistanis on social media condemned the commissioner’s actions and pointed out how “such attitude makes children of the bureaucrats privileged that the staff of their abbu g is their personal noukar”. But in Gujranwala, the most important question was who let the dog out?
Commissioner Gujranwala should explain the urgency for using state resources. He doesn't have children? They should've searched for the dog. Such attitude makes children of the bureaucrats privileged that the staff of their abbu g is their personal noukar.#کمشنر_کا_کتا_گم_گیا
— ولید عبداللہ (@RCitizen01) July 28, 2021
Commissioner Gujranwala should be ashamed for using state resources for personal reasons.#کمشنر_کا_کتا_گم_گیا
— Rubaab Shah (@RubaabShah) July 27, 2021