Dear Pakistanis: While it makes me happy that Prime Minister Imran Khan and PTI are thinking long term and have some – let me stress the word ‘some’ – vision in terms of the environment while inaugurating a 100 kanal forest, sadly, this is not the only change needed to save ‘Our Planet’ as David Attenborough or Greta Thunberg would inform you. ‘Our Planet’ is the six-part documentary by Attenborough available on Netflix, and if you don’t have time to watch it, you can watch the one-hour version ‘A life on our planet’. We need to stop the overpopulation of the planet, which basically means involving the Molvi’s as did Bangladesh and do rapid family planning fast, I know it is said that each child brings their own ‘risq’ but if we don’t have enough to feed our nation soon, it will be a disaster. In 5 year’s time, there will be a shortage of water in Lahore and areas like Thar in Sindh are already facing drought and famine, so that is another angle that Imran Khan needs to look at. I hope the Dams he is starting are built in time. Also, we need to minimize our dairy intake and meat eating. I would suggest the Prime Minister and the entire government become vegetarian to set an example for all Pakistanis. So, in essence we need to say ‘khuda hafiz, al-aman’ to McDonalds, KFC, Burger King and even their local variants be it Chatkara or Dogar H-block DHA, your local dhabba or anywhere else where meat is sold. We must shift to vegetables and lentils. In order to return to the ecological balance of the past we need to shift to a plant-based diet. That’s just a plain fact. All you climate change activists out there eating meat, and flying all over the planet increasing the carbon footprint – please stop being hypocrites. We essentially need to minimize flying and all forms of travel. Shift to bicycling, growing organic food in our backyards, farming like our ancestors used to do and of course recycling every tiny thing. I need to be local and buy local. All this has already been initiated in developing countries such as The Netherlands which Attenborough mentions in his one hour documentary. The weather is changing fast, with flash floods and fires in countries all over the globe. As Jeff Bezoz jet’s into space to find a new home on Mars, we the masses have no other home, we only have this lovely one, Earth, our Planet A, B, C and D. For us, the majority, there is no planet B, C, or D. We can’t afford space travel and anyway developing that other planet is a whole other story. So, we need to work in harmony to save planet Earth from ourselves. We are living in a world akin to Orwell’s ‘Brave New World’ – our groceries delivered online, our shopping mostly moving online, our schooling and doctors also online. Even most work is being done online now due to Covid-19 and now the Delta variant. The mentally ill and those with physical impairments find it even more difficult to cope in this new era. We live indoors, and robots are being assembled in factories in China to do the work that frontline workers carry out. Robots are already helping doctors perform complicated surgeries and operations. Environmental degradation occurs on a daily basis, and the majority of us don’t stop eating meat or thinking about the petrol we use or thinking of shifting to electric cars. Rewilding is currently not happening at the rate it should. I fear for the life of our darling Earth. As carbon and other toxic gas emissions rise, and armies are still at war in Syria, Yemen, Palestine, Kashmir just to name a few places. What is the future? Do we really need these redundant massive armies anymore? The era of the army and the police state is over in the West, AOC and Bernie and the Squad are holding the elected politicians to account for their finances. When will there be a proper, open, televised audit of our army? The bureaucracy, the air force, the judiciary, the navy? As they say in Persian, ‘iss talab main mee naik’, ‘Everyone is dirty in this pond.’ We are all complicit in where we have led our country with our actions. With the #BlackLivesMatter movement, #MeToMovement and the environmental movement abroad combining, it is evident that all humans are equal and here we are still stuck selling ‘Fair and Lovely’ to please ‘rishta aunties’. Let’s please get out of our 18th century Jane Austen novels because for the poor in Pakistan, the country is a Dickens novel. Is there a future at all? Are we so selfish, so brutal, so callous that we will leave no planet and by default lead to the extinction of our race, our pride, our “Asraful Maklukat.” These are questions I think about, things that worry me, things that I know as a political scientist and development studies professional, I should be working to change. I know a peaceful revolution is a dream. Who knows what the future will bring? Let us not give up hope. Let me just say a lot of policy changes and personal changes and changes in mindset are required and it’s a pandora’s box so I don’t know where to begin. Let’s begin by at least double masking. No more is even done in the capital itself. But I’ve been working in this field since the age of 21, I’m almost 38 now, that’s 17 years, so if the anyone wants to understand why the planet is in the balance, feel free to shoot me an email at: firstname.lastname@example.org, I’ll certainly write back.