Dr A Q Khan
A friend of mine, Dr Abdul Rashid Seyal, runs a clinic – Seyal Medical Centre – at Kutchery Road in Multan. He is an American-trained cardiologist, a great humanitarian and a fine human being. He runs his clinic with a passion with the sole aim of serving ailing humanity. He once had a rare experience, which I would like to share with you in his own words.
“I always thank the Almighty, irrespective of the situation I am facing, and praise him. One day when I came to the clinic and entered my office, I saw a skinny, weak girl of about 20 or 22 cleaning my room. She was wearing old clothes covered in dust and dirt. I asked my secretary about this unknown girl. She told me that our regular cleaning lady was unwell and had left the job. Yesterday, this poor girl came and asked for a job. Today she came and immediately started cleaning your office. Days passed by. I had the feeling that the girl’s innocent face and eyes seemed to convey some message. I never asked her, or the secretary, anything more about her.
“Six months passed and one day my secretary asked me buy two charpoys (local beds) for Naureen (that was the girl’s name) and then she told me what had happened the previous night. ‘Her husband’ she said ‘picked her up on a motorcycle every evening. Yesterday he was quite late so I took Naureen with me to drop her off at her place. It was a shabby hut in a desolate area. I wanted to enter the hut with her but she hesitated and told me she was fine and that I could leave her there. I entered anyway just to see what the situation was. I was shocked to see that the hut was totally empty with only a kerosene lamp. Her two children were lying on the bare floor. I asked her where she and he husband slept. She pointed towards a corner – also a bare floor. I was shocked. I asked her if she had no beds, no mattresses, no cooking pots, no burner, nothing. She just burst into tears and could not answer. I thought it better not to ask any more questions and quietly left’.
“The next day I bought two beds for her, a few pots and pans and some clothes. You can image the gratitude shining from her eyes. The following day I rented a small house for her. Actually I was planning to buy a small house for her and had told her so. A few days later I called the girl and asked her about her family affairs. She told me that she had a most painful life. She was illiterate but was regular in offering daily prayers. Sometimes there was food to eat and sometimes just dry bread soaked in water. Still, she always thanked Allah as she knew there were thousands who did not have even dry bread or bread crumbs to eat. “When she was 14, her parents, due to poverty, married her off to a cousin. The husband was working at a motorcycle repair shop and could earn Rs100 to Rs200 a day. Within a year they had twins. Sometimes she made dung cakes for fire and sometimes she worked in some house to earn about Rs20 a day. But she never forgot to thank the Almighty for His favours.
“In the beginning her in-laws gave them a small corner in a barn but after some time they asked them to leave and they got a small corner in a buffalo barn. When she got the job in the hospital, they rented a room and moved into it with their family. It is difficult these days when the prices of everything are soaring sky high. But, she said, she was always grateful to Allah for what they had and could never dream of having all this comfort and facilities. ‘Today I am offering special prayers to Allah to thank Him for His favours and am also praying for you, Doctor Sb, for becoming an angel and looking after us.’
“I then asked this innocent girl to again pray for me the same way. She said: ‘I am very happy and crying and reciting Al hamdolillah and in my heart I am praying for you. I don’t remember what I was praying but remember praying for your good health, happiness, long life and prosperity, both in this world and the hereafter. And I said to myself: “No doubt my Lord is most kind and most benevolent to me.” (Surah Maryam, Ayat 47)