A talk by Mr. Nasir Bhalla

by Saad Ali

Friday 25th February 2005 proved to be another informative and constructive day for the final year students particularly, as they had a chance to hear the director operations YTM, Mr. Nasir Bhalla. The speaker embarked upon the current trade scene with reference to textile and clothing business. He stressed upon the need for Pakistan’s textile industry to encourage innovation and research if it wanted to stay competitive and profitable. The speaker forecasted supply chain management as the biggest challenge in coming years. According to him the time period for the production and shipment of goods would be required to reduce as retailers demand would go up. For example Wal Mart would give 14 days to complete the order, JC penny, 7 days and Target would pick up goods anytime from the factory’s inventory. The lecture followed with some smart and thought provoking questions by the students among whom Ali Raza Merchant, Saad Ali and Ahsan Bari were prominent.

The Thatta Bus Situation

Ammar Saif of TS4 got on the Thatta Bus around 4:30 p.m. at Quaidabad, embarking on what we may call the journey of his life. He very smartly insisted to the bus conductor that he be dropped off in front TIP, and promptly the conductor refused, ensuing in a stiff exchange of words.

Ammar Saif, feeling threatening that he’ll be whisked off to Gharo, called his friends at the TIP hostel to come and save the day. At 5 p.m., Mohammed Amir, Tahoor Mohammed, Bilal Saleem, Khawaja Hasam Qadir, and Bilal Mustafa went outside to wait for the bus. Within minutes, 16 students were gathered outside. Their intentions were unknown to the TIP security guards.

Our hostel students were quite used to forcing the Thatta Bus to stop in front of TIP. Just the Saturday before this incident, our students had gathered outside to stop the bus to ‘rescue’ Mohammad Amir of TS3. This week our gallant boys risked life and limb to force a speeding bus to come to a standstill ‘ either that or the Thatta Bus stopped of its own accord at 5:30.

At 5:45 the braver of the 16 involved were busily beating the two bus conductors (and possibly even a passenger), when they looked up and saw two Thatta busses approaching from Karachi, and two more from Thatta! Our brave boys literally s**t in their pants and took off running towards the sanctuary of the TIP hostel.

There were two guards manning the TIP gates, and 5 busloads of angry Sindhis were now marching in furious anger towards TIP. Two guards, a gate that doesn’t lock, and openings at the side of the gate large enough to let a man through weren’t enough to control the situation. The poor guards were attacked by the Sindhis, two busses entered TIP premises, and 20-25 Sindhis marched towards the boys hostel.

This all happened within seconds. The Sindhis were coming in, the busses were coming in, our two guards were being attacked, and our brave boys were bravely running at full speed. “Banda marnae ka daar tha,” commented one of our fearless boys.

Somehow the hostel guard got wind of the matter and he safely let our students into the hostel and locked the door behind him. He stood outside, alone, with a horde of now armed and angry Sindhis approaching with sticks, pipes, and rocks. The angry horde pelted the hostel, breaking a few windows. Somehow there were kind to the hostel guard, and didn’t injure him too badly.

Meanwhile, the guards at the main gate, in between holding off the angry mob, called Mohsin Raza, their department incharge. After numerous tries, they got through to his landline (his cell phone being out of order for some weeks). He told the guard to call Shoaib Arif, who told the guard to call Shakel Ahmad, who told him to call the Dean, who in turn again told him to contact Mohsin. The guard, sick of this charade, decided to take matters in his own hands. Not having contact information for any police stations, he called our Fauju Fertilizer neighbors to contact the Bin Qasim Police, where he found out that someone (possibly Mohsin) had already informed them. Two mobiles had been dispatched, one from Bin Qasim Police and another from Steel Town Police.

That was around 5:50 p.m. All eleven guards had come into action and calmed the Sindhis that the President will be shortly coming to settle the situation. The Sindhis also took their busses out of TIP premises, but they had blocked the road and there was a traffic jam extending for miles.

And where were the warden and the wardeness during all this? They had left TIP at 8:25 in the morning, and returned when everything was over at 6:50 p.m.

At 6:30 the Police SHO and DSP showed up, as well as the Thatta Bus Association Chairman, and the situation was under control, with the Chairman agreeing to come later to talk to our President to sort out the matter.

The next day a police mobile was prominently parked at the TIP gate to protect our students from any unexpected retaliation by the Sindhis. However, all those students involved had bravely packed their bags and gone home.

Currently, the way it stands, the Thatta Bus Association Chairman is trying to file a case against TIP and the students involved, claiming assault. TIP in turn has threatened that they shall retaliate with a trespassing and assault (beating guards, breaking windows) case. Contrary to rumors, no FIR has been issued.

It is expected that the involved students shall be issued warning letters and possibly evicted from the hostel. One wonders whether this assault is a more serious case than the infamous “Elfi Prank” which lead to the suspension of 5 students from giving their final exams.

The guards will also be probably issued warning letters for trying their best to protect our students.

What had instigated this in the first place? At a hostel meeting in Fall Semester 2004, some students complained to Shakeel Ahmed about the Thatta Bus not stopping at TIP. He recommended that students take matters into their own hands, aur phir wo kaise nahin rokae ga!.

The 16 students involved, in order of importance, are Ammar Saif, Amir Mohammed, Usman Sohail, Hassan Khalid, Ali Abdullah, Bilal Ghani, Tahoor Ahmed, Rao Zia, Amjad Rafique, Rizwan Younas, Bilal Saleem, Khawaja Hasam Qadir, Harris Dewan, Faizan Alvi, and Asif Khan.

“Innovations in Textiles and Clothing”

The Textile Institute of Pakistan and British Council Pakistan, in conjunction with the Higher Education Commission�s (HEC) Higher Education Links program, and the TIP and The University of Manchester Higher Education Link, jointly organized a seminar �Innovations in Textile and Clothing.�

The key speakers were Tilak Dias and John McLoughlin speaking on �Future Textiles� and �Quality Assurance in Sewn Products Technology� respectively, both of the William Lee Innovation Centre (WLIC) at the University of Manchester.

Zubair Bandukda of the WLIC also talked about the importance incorporating research as a universal focus for a more sustainable university.

Shakel Ahmad of TIP gave a talk on changes in academic policies at TIP and the removal of the (n-1) system. One industry professional commented, “yep TIP ki examination policy ka idhar kya tallok hai?

The seminar was well attended by industry professionals and textile faculty from all over Pakistan, as well as many students.

TIP Sports Go One Further for Upcoming HEC Tournament

TIP will be participating in cricket, football and basketball. The basketball tournament is on Saturday, 5th March, at the Karachi Port Trust Complex. The football tournament will be at Jamshoro, and we’re still waiting for our sports editor to fill in the other details.

A friendly cricket match was played between match Arafat’s team vs. Salman’s team preparation for the HEC tournament.

Harris Dewan LBW on the first ball, which he claims was an unfair decision. Hammad Mehmmod after surviing a clear caught behind, managed to score 36 and then was bowled out. The match took a prayer break, and half the players then did not show up, resulting in a victory for Arafat’s team.

Salman Hussain is the captain for the cricket team, and Arafat Tahir for the football team, and Zain Hussan for the basketball team. The captains are working with Ali Hafeez Azmat, TISF Coordinator, to arrange for kits and uniforms.

Story Writing Competition 2004

The story writing competition of Spring 2004 was arranged to great fanfare by the Talking Textures team, notably Adil Marvi, Fakeha Naeem, Arsalan Ahmed, and Nida Khan. 38 participants surprisingly came to contest for the cash prizes of Rs 1500, 1000 and 500 for the top three places, and possible publication in TIP’s student magazine, Talking Textures.

Participants had three topics to choose from; ‘There he/she/it was,’ ‘Capital Punishment at TIP,’ and ‘I had no choice but to’. There will be blind checking by multiple judges, and the essays receiving the most votes wins.