A study on smoking in offices

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Nowadays, there is no one not knowing a person who doesn't smoke. Every person has friends or family members who smoke. Peer pressure or just the company of smokers affects those who don't smoke and eventually they start smoking too. Commercials show that smoking is a way to be cool and to relax but what they don't show is how harmful smoking is and what he numerous harmful effects of smoking are. It is unfortunate to know that smoking has become rampant despite the awareness campaigns carried out to educate people about its harmful effects.

Almost everyone knows that smoking causes cancer, emphysema, and heart disease; that it can shorten your life by 10 years or more; and it is a costly habit. Despite knowing all of that you get to see even more people smoking their life and health away. More alarming is the increasing number of teenagers indulging in this habit. Smoking is a very easy habit to pick but a hard one to lose. Peer pressure is one of the main causes motivating these young adults to pick up this habit. It has also become a medium of escape or a way of coping from the escalated amounts of stress involved in daily life these days. Many developed countries have implemented laws to cut down on the amount of cigarette sales in their countries. Teenagers and young kids under the age of 18 cannot buy a packet, smoke free zones have been established and tax on tobacco has been increased. A marked decrease in the amount of smokers has been seen in these countries because of such measures.

Ten or more so years ago, people were allowed to smoke anywhere, may it be restaurants, offices, shopping malls or any other public place. But new laws have been implemented to protect people from the harmful effects of smoking, for the smoker himself and also for the non-smoker. But in countries like Pakistan, it is very difficult to implement these laws because of lack of education and awareness in many areas. A huge hue and cry is created in the media about how smoking leads to multifarious health hazards. However, the more pressing issue today is passive smoking, is being ignored or not paid too much importance to. Active smoking is known to be the trigger or sole cause for various kinds of cancer. The smoker, himself inhales carbon monoxide alongside several other carcinogens present in tobacco and is continuously lowering the affinity of his blood for oxygen. Numerous researches have reached the conclusion that different cigarette brands mainstream smoke has fewer carcinogens as compared to the side-stream smoke, which is inhaled by the passive smoker. However, the non-smoker sitting in a smoker's company is being harmed even more by the very same carcinogens and carbon monoxide. It has been proved according to scientific research that secondhand smoke cause the same or sometimes even worse effects on the non-smoker's body. Parents smoking in front of their children, friends smoking in their social circle, people smoking in restaurants and other public places are not only causing harm to their own lives but to the several other lives around them.

Many European countries have implemented the smoking ban in public places passed out by the World Health Organization. According to public polls carried out in those countries a huge majority was in favor of these bans. A marked decrease in heart and respiratory diseases has been observed over the past several years in countries where this ban has been executed. This ban also means that there will be limited places for a smoker to enjoy a cigarette openly. It could result in that particular smoker cutting down the number of cigarettes per day also and ultimately leading to quitting smoking entirely. This way not only the non-smoker community would benefit but also the smoker community would see a marked reduction in its numbers.

Governments that have banned smoking in public places and businesses that have restricted smoking in their offices have done a commendable thing because this way people will at least stay away from it for a while. When such a restriction is enforced people can probably get over their addiction to smoking or maybe reduce it to an extent. It is imperative that such laws be enforced vigorously in Pakistan also. Many shopkeepers sell cigarettes to underage children in hopes of selling their product and making a living out of it. However, they do not realize the impact of that cigarette sold. The same cigarette triggers a cycle of events beginning from that same young boy smoking amongst his friends and ending in causing serious harm to his own and his companions' lives. People sitting in public places and in door offices also go through the same cycle when a smoker lights up a cigarette near them. Such a ban would at least prevent the non-smokers to stay away from cigarette smoke for a while helping them to get over with their ridiculous addiction.

Should criminals be punished with lengthy jail terms or re-educated and re-habituated, using community service programs for instance, before being reintroduced to society?

Life has to be followed according to a certain pre-ordained decorum, which has been established by our predecessors. This rule book has been altered with over time and many additions and deletions have been made. Man evolved from primitive times to settle into civilizations. Over centuries human beings have transitioned from purely barbaric times to times when society set down rules and regulations for everyone to abide them. These rules and regulations keep society in check and prevent situations getting out of hand.

Human beings have a tendency to go overboard and reach extremes in all situations. Life lived in moderation is the key to unlocking the simplicity in life. We see around us today what extremism has done to today's world. There are two divisions present now: religious fanatics and people completely detached from religion also called atheists. And we see that neither section of society has proved to be beneficial in shaping a peacefully co-existent community. Hence, this condition of turmoil that has the world in its clutches enhances and emphasizes the importance of having a constant check on society. Otherwise, things can go haywire as they have now.

Crime is rampant and criminals run about freer than the common man. This is common to all parts of the world but especially in our part of the world, where the normal man hesitates to go about his daily activities due to the impending fear of being robbed in bright daylight or worst come worst also end up losing his life. The scale of these crimes is spread over a wide range, from snatching cellphones, bags, money, cars on gunpoint to bloody massacres caused by suicide bomb blasts. Criminals are either instigated by poverty and in more recent times the motif behind bomb blasts is to create a wave of terror amongst people and somehow manage to intimidate the superpowers reigning over the world. Ending poverty is a job entitled to the government of that particular area. However, when the government fails to provide the basic necessities of life to every person, in such regions crime makes a strong foothold. Moreover, it is the job of the higher authorities to negotiate with the terrorist-communities and try to resolve the poignant issues, which unsolved are resulting in the loss of numerous thousand innocent lives. Time and again, it has been witnessed that the attempt to negotiate has also failed.

Now the question that arises is how to correct the wrong? If thought is put to this matter, there are only two possible solutions. One way could be to rectify all the wrong-doings by putting all those evil-doers on the right path by providing them with education and guidance in a suitable environment. However, the other path open in such situations is to admonish the sinners in a manner, which serves as a reprimand for the other members of the community to abstain from committing the same mistake again.

It is human nature to make mistakes and then learn from them. However, if such mistakes frequently, the only way to prevent their recurrence is to warn the person that if there is a next time then the consequences would be severe. That warning would light up as a bulb when the same person heads out to commit the same mistake. He may stop right there or ignore that warning and go ahead with it any way. But, if that mistake is punished quite severely, then there will definitely be a no next time. The punishment would serve as a warning to the others also, that similar behavior would not be tolerated. The same example can be applied on a larger scale also. If murder was to be ignored and all murderers were allowed to go about as they wished to, then everyone would be at daggers drawn at the mere drop of a hat. However, everyone is aware since a tender age that killing someone is wrong and the punishment for it is death or life imprisonment. This death penalty or life imprisonment threat crosses every person's mind that has the slightest inclination to kill someone. Many then abstain from the act due to the fear of the punishment and there are also a few, which go on to committing the sin despite of the impending jail life.

Many criminals evade jail life due to connections with superior authorities, or by paying bribes in our part of the country. Surprisingly, even the superior authorities are involved in crimes leading to serving jail-time. But, since they are the big shots they manage to escape conviction entirely, it serves as a bad example to the common man who tries to lead a good and righteous life. The thought that occurs to him is that if anyone can do wrong and not be punished for it then why not do the wrong because most of the times the temptation to commit an evil act is quite overwhelming. Ultimately, this results in unrest in society where the discrimination between right and wrong is lost.

In my opinion, criminals should be punished severely with lengthy jail terms so that in future the thought of committing the crime does not even cross their minds and also, because it would serve as an example for others who think that they can get away with anything. In addition, as criminals who are given lengthy jail terms have nothing to do, can think what they did wrong and how their act affected them and the victim or victims. He might realize his mistake and prevent from committing the crime again.

Comparison of Karachi & Lahore

Karachi is the largest city of Pakistan and the 20th largest in the world population wise and capital of Sindh province. Lahore at the same time is the second largest city of Pakistan and 37th in the world population wise and is the capital of Punjab. Karachi has the main seaport and is the financial centre of Pakistan. Whereas Lahore is often referred to as the cultural heart of Pakistan, as it is the centre of Pakistani arts, films and intelligentsia.

Karachi is also known as the Global city. It was the original capital of Pakistan until the construction of Islamabad and is the location of the Port of Karachi and Port Bin Qasim, two of the region's largest and busiest ports. After the independence of Pakistan, the city population increased dramatically and has been increasing since then. Karachi is the hub of Pakistan and plays the most important role in the economy of country. Karachi is spread at an area of over 3,527 km2 (1,362 sq mi). It is known as the "City of Lights" and "The bride of the cities" for its liveliness, and the "City of the Quaid", having been the birth and burial place of Quaid-e-Azam (Muhammad Ali Jinnah), the founder of Pakistan.

Lahore has a famous saying which says that a person who hasn't seen Lahore has seen nothing. Lahore has been a centre of Muslim heritage since the Data Durbar is also situated in Lahore. It is also very well known as the Garden of Mughals because of its rich Mughal heritage. Mughal structures such as the Badshahi Mosque, the Lahore Fort, Shalimar Gardens, and the mausoleum of Jehangir and NurJehan are admired tourist attractions in Lahore and one of the most popular tourist attractions of Pakistan. Lahore is also home to many British colonial structures built in the Mughal-Gothic style, like the Lahore High Court, the General Post Office (GPO), the Lahore Museum, and many older universities including the University of the Punjab.  Tourists make sure while visiting Pakistan that they pay a visit to Lahore. Lahore is spread at an area of 1,772 km2 (684 sq mi).

Karachi and Lahore are the cities that represent two different aspects of the country. Karachi shows the metropolitan life of Pakistan where people are kept busy in their businesses whereas, Lahore, represents other activities by which heritage and culture of the people can be easily seen. The two being situated in two different provinces is mostly the reason given behind this vast difference. However, it is important to keep in mind, that even though Karachi exhibits such a fast lifestyle, you will easily be able to find all sorts of people all sorts of culture. Karachi at the same time can also attract many tourists; it is not just that the tourism is restricted to Lahore. Lahore is a historical place and you will find what Pakistan is and who had all ruled Pakistan at one time. When you will visit Karachi you will get to know many different kinds of regional languages and different people from all over Pakistan. Lahore's greatest attraction is that it also situated right next to the Wagah border which is the gateway to India and Pakistan; While Karachi is the place which had been chosen for Pakistan's founder, M.A. Jinaah's burial place. Also, Karachi has 3 beaches and some Islands in store for the people who want to visit Karachi.

As the population of Karachi at current is almost double the population of Lahore, the comparison between the standards of living of the people would be of no use. The weather of the two cities varies in the same way; located on the coast, Karachi tends to have a relatively mild temperature whereas, Lahore experiences a hot semi-arid climate with rainy, long and extremely hot summers, dry and warm winters, a monsoon and dust storms.

Lahore touched the peak of its glory during the Mughal rule from 1524 to 1752. The Mughals, who were famous as builders, gave Lahore some of its finest architectural monuments, many of which are extant today. Karachi has a rich collection of buildings and structures of varied architectural styles. It is important to note that The Hindu Gymkhana (1925) and The Mohatta Palace are the example of Mughal revival buildings. Overall, both the above mentioned cities have enough qualities to make anyone visit the places without much thinking.

The Evil Scientist

I followed the evil scientist into a dark room. What I saw, I would never forget…

…because that evil scientist was making a time bomb in front of me which was pretty scary. The room where that scientist was working was very dark and quiet. The open windows were half broken. The weather was calm that night because of which the room felt even quieter. It looked like a haunted house to me. There was only one light which was fixed above the table he was working on. The scientist was an ugly looking guy. He was wearing a dirty white lab coat, his greasy black hair were a mess, his face was filthy and greasy and by looking at his face I could that he hadn't slept for over 48 hours probably because he was working on his evil master plan. He was smiling and talking to himself while working. I was standing far away from him which is why I couldn't hear him properly but because of the dead silence, I heard him say that people would remember him for years. I tried to get closer to him to see what he was doing and what I saw was terrifying. At first I couldn't see anything but then I realized that he was working on a time bomb. He was working with wires and timers and was constantly talking. For a while I just stood there terrified and shocked on what I saw, not knowing what to do. But as soon as I heard him say that tomorrow his dream would come true, I realized that he had planned to complete the time bomb tonight and that was when I ran from there and went straight to the nearest police station. I informed them what I had seen and I showed them the place where that evil scientist was working. They assured me that the scientist would be stopped after which I left hoping that they would stop him and his evil plans.

Developing a Story by the following writing prompts

A school bus, a lady in red, a priest

At 7:15 am, the school bus picked up the American High School's Biology teacher. She was wearing a red full length dress this morning and she looked worried. As she sat in usual seat, the bus driver drove off. He picked up 2 more students and was minutes away from the school when the bus hit a priest who had walked in front of the bus. It looked as if he was in a hurry because two students had seen him running before the bus hit him. Anyways, the priest went flying towards the left side of the road and within seconds people were all around him. The bus driver was taken into the police custody and the students had to walk their way to the school. The biology teacher also went along them not knowing that person who was hit was none other than her husband. She went to the school and was conducting one of her classes when she got a phone call from the hospital after which she left everything and ran to the hospital. There she got to know that the priest, her husband was in critical condition. His left hand was fractured, his neck was broken and he had bruises on his head. His spinal cord was also severely damaged. The woman started crying and praying to God. The doctors had told her that they could not say anything about his condition for the next 48 hours. And as for the bus driver, there were witnesses on his side who had seen the priest running before the bus hit him. They told the police that it wasn't the bus driver's fault which is why he was released.