Tuesday, May 8, 2012

Off to Chaman and Afghanistan Border - Part II

Chaman is situated at approximately 125 kilometers from Quetta city. We were being alerted that route to the city is extremely dangerous as roads haven't been developed. Initiating 50 kilometers from Quetta of highway road (N25) directing towards Chaman is worth the drive, rest of the patch is completely damaged and you will end up facing too many hiccups. We had to travel anyway and face the challenge, the weather in the region like always was cracking and awesome. We had to make sure that our drivers were experienced in order to tackle the mostly uneven track. It was so rough and bumpy that there was quite a high probability of your car getting punctured in the mid-way. It was thus recommended that you carry backup of wheels and be a good mechanic too in order to manage any setback.

After having a daily morning buffet at hotel in Quetta, we decided to leave for Chaman on a bright morning during one of the weekdays. I had a quick shower, took out my new shalwar kameez, had my sandles and tied a "patto" on top of my head. The beard I had specifically grown up for this tour resembled me as I am someone from Kandahar. Our little convoy of two cars was on our way for National Highway towards Chaman.Western Bypass in the city of Quetta would connect with the main highway. It's a proper route initially with mountains at it's both sides, at a certain distance there lies a stone crushing plant. Pishin is 50 kilometers ahead of Quetta, the road to the district intersects with the main highway Pishin Road. The Pishin Road further connects with the Chaman Road, a distance so far would cover few green-fields, some areas being cultivated, beautiful mountains with irregular shapes having different shades of brown color.

Heading towards Chaman - 111 Kms more (Unlucky Nelson !)


Pishin Road

The scary part commences after covering few kilometers of the Chaman Road,  then there is absolutely no sign of roads and path is utter patchy. We were being told to be careful as the robberies and embezzlement during the rest of the distance is at it's peak. FC (Frontier Corps) is active but aren't a great force in front of the tribes living in that area. FC men leave their duties by the time sun sets and this is when thieves of the area become operational. Couple of places I came across and are famous for being replete with bandits are "Mezaai Adda" and "Qilla Abdullah". It is widely known that the tribes of this area might not spare anything. We were lucky to travel during those days when NATO supply via Chaman border was denied by the government. Fortunate we were, because otherwise the people of these areas go crazy, the routes get congested, they fire gunshots and end up stealing number of trucks. I was being told that it doesn't matter to US government if 20 out of 300 trucks are being stolen by the raiders. So this was a norm while truck drivers were on duty for US government or army.

Road to Mezai Adda and Qila Abdullah
It was hell scary while we were passing from that area, luckily we crossed and finally ended up in the monumental mountains, the temperature was too low as we were being elevated after every step our car had made. Too many sharp turns were there and we were on such a height that it would scare if you dare sight-seeing from the window. Heavy loaded trucks for the purpose of trade would pass you with inches away or might end up feather touching with your car too. All of a sudden, our car got punctured as it further ascended the mountains. While the tire was being replaced, we had a bit of sight-seeing of the city and had we carried binoculars, we could have seen Afghanistan Border from the mountains alone. We were back on track and weren't far-off from the place we had to reach. I must hereby not forget the railway tracks we had seen then, those were laid by the British over large distance crossing the tunnels created beneath the mountains. Pity us, we don't have trains to run anything on them and what we have gets bombarded.

Tracks all over the mountains

Tunnel for Train can be seen
Few minutes more and we were on Quetta Road which linked us to Chaman Bypass. We were very lucky to know a friend here who has a political background. He took a great care of us, his hospitality to us was exemplary as we stayed few days in Chaman. Five to six meal course was served to us apart from drinks consisting of Lassi, regular cold drinks, natural green tea and lemon grass tea too.  I was amazed to see their diet, one size of the roti was such that in which whole of my family could have had their dinner. You would laugh to know that despite of being super hungry, couple of us couldn't finish that bread together. Natural green tea was terrific, I'd glass after glass. In Chaman, it's a tradition to have green tea right after taking lunch, they were proud of the cup they would offer, claiming it to be effective unlike fake tea brands we have in urban cities. What reminds me the most though is "parath, anda and chai" we had at some corner of the city. We had a good time discussing various topics after having food, ranging from politics to trading in the city, lifestyle of people and the never ending problems of the province.

Friend's guest house in Chaman
We were also able to take out time to roam through Chaman City as well. I must mention here that the city turned out to be a total opposite of what image I'd exactly regarding the place. It was quite peaceful to be there, no one would unnecessarily point you out and would mind their own business, people there were quite inviting and cooperative too. It's because Pushtun over there don't want their commerce and trade to be disturbed and get it over-taken by some other force. We traveled through the market and noticed that how people would run their business. As we wandered in the bazaar, the place gave me an appearance of some place in Afghanistan. It was just like those scenes which we see in the Hollywood movies shot in Kandahar or Baghdad.

Afghani Rickshaw

I could see many old men sitting at the corner having chat in group whereas the young were busy running, driving cars or riding carts. Interesting fact which I don't know is accurate or not, but the average old age which was communicated to me was 75. The figure is quite high but I could see many over-aged people there who looked physically fit. Local people there also informed me that due to cold temperature, they would eat meat so that they could keep their body warm for good period of time. Weather in the city was quite unpredictable, it was never hot though but it would start with a shining sun and then suddenly gets too boisterous as if some cyclone has touched the city whereas drizzling was consistent for most part of the day. What turned out to be really weird though were the expensive cars I saw normal people driving. They were mostly smuggled obviously known as "Kabli Gariaan", a place where you could see Land Cruisers, different models of Corolla and Vitz in abundance. Illegal vehicle trading or NATO Army kits must be just couple out of number of businesses running across the border.

These cars were in abundance over there !

Af-Pak Border (Spinboldak - Chaman)
Interestingly due to our friend, I was not only able to learn a bit of Pushto but was also able to visit the Afghanistan Border. We were lucky enough to not get investigated at check-posts and thus we were just meters away from the Af-Pak Border. Yes, been there, done that !

Pakistan welcoming us back to homeland from "Chaman" kaye uss paar !

"za quetta ta laram, Quetta dair shao. Ku Chaman ta Quetta sa ziata shao"

My narrative of the trip to Quetta ! - Part I

I've been lucky enough to intensively travel all over Pakistan except being to Baluchistan. So fortunately, recently I was not only able to avail the opportunity of visiting Quetta but also travel all the way to Chaman, Afghan Border. Despite of the security concerns and terrifying stories of the missing persons, I with my colleagues visited the province. This truly turned out to be a defining and lifetime experience. I rarely write anything but considering this journey was a bit different, was thus coerced to share my narrative of the trip.

I would go with any seat on a flight but badly wanted a window one this time, so that I could sneak outside and witness the huge mountains that God has gifted to Pakistan. As the plane drew closer, I observed mountains covering the large landscape. The altitude lessened and temperature increased as the plane finally landed and phones started ringing for confirming the well being of loved ones. I made my move towards the door with a weird feeling of how the city would treat me. The terrific sight of gigantic mountains right at front of the door and a sudden chilled breeze of air that took off my cap thrilled me.

Quetta Airport, captured from the PIA Bus.
The airport was as bizarre as our airport of the capital city. During our drive to the hotel, the city looked like a tranquilizing and pacifying one and was mostly surrounded by the mountains. Not much traffic could be seen during the day which was probably due to the holiday or a decreasing population. I know many families who are considering to move to other cities because of terrifying incidents of kidnapping and killings in the city. Maybe this was the reason of the silent people of the city who had been searching for the peace. These disturbing thoughts then were consistently striking my mind.

Quetta City

We later checked in our rooms and took out sometime to discover the luxurious hotel. It'd almost everything to offer from lounges to spacious rooms to orchards to courtyards. Though most of the Baluchistan is barren but Quetta is quite well known for being a fruit heaven. At some corners of the city you can witness plantation of apple, peach, apricot or pomegranate trees. Probably a terrific weather of the city always have had it's blessings on the growth of fruits. Seriously, the sizzling hot weather of Karachi these days keeps reminding me of the chilled wind that had left me shivering many times. The freezing weather even during month of May and a splendid sight of clouds was being like at a paradise. What used to turn those moments into an ecstasy was due to the elevation of the city above sea-level. It sounded like as if you are flying with the clouds !

The clouds, they were everywhere !

Hotel !

We knew a resident there who had been living in the city since birth, he helped us out in discovering the people and the place even better. We shared food and traveled to different places together. Though, we'd a luxury of eating food at hotel but I bet you would regret missing the famous dishes being served at local restaurants. Some of the food I'd there which had left me craving was "Landhi" or in other words as Lamb BBQ, believe me the "boti" of lamb being served with the help of long iron skewers was so mouth watering. Among other, we tried were "Kaabli Pulao", "Baluchistan Sajji" and "Mutton Chanpein", seriously once you get your hands on Pulao, you can't stop eating. I remember how I'd galloped a massive plate of Pulao without stopping for a second. Mutton Chaanps were even more delicious, the memory of munching the pieces out of it still comes to my mind ! I also liked their traditional way of serving the food with tables of short height while sitting on a beautiful art being done on a carpet or rug. While enjoying the amazing diet, I also came across the fact that Pashtun consider it as a major reason of disrespect and insolence in case a guest ends up paying for the food.

Lamb de Boti !

The city had great drinks and ice-cream with amazing flavors to offer too, "Flora" is quite well known in the city for providing all the flavors during different seasons. Yes, I didn't spare Faluda which tasted incredibly good with a mango flavored ice-cream. Coming back to hotel, it had excellent breakfast with numerable dishes and juices. The best I liked from the menu was beef nihari, sausages and cheese omelet. Bar-B-Que obviously had to be good too, what amazed me more were the desserts they had to offer, they were absolutely amazing. For Chinese, they have famous Xulian venue, their specialties were the dishes cooked out of Lamb and obviously don't miss the red hot iron soup for the appetizer !

Traveling to Bazar was quite an experience as well, the congested part of the city has extremely narrow roads. What I felt really awkward and weird was how people have to drive on such constricted lanes. Liaqat Bazar in Quetta has almost everything to offer, from art work promoting their culture like artifacts, shawl, carpets, coats, pashtun caps e.t.c. The original work is being done on the cloth which is available usually on a very discounted price. You would be lucky in case you accompany a local of there, a person would be of great help for bargaining in Pushto ! People start pouring into great numbers for different shops right after the sun sets. Unlike other major urban cities, people close their markets in the city by 9 or 10 in the night. For men, it is also suggested that you resemble like locals while you are traveling the city, preferably in shalwar kameez with no contrast colors, a pushtun cap would be an ad-on ! Bazaar doesn't end here, how can one miss to mention the dry-fruits market, there are just never ending shops. A place from where the dry-fruits of amazing quality are exported all over the country. Every item of dry-fruit like pistachios, cherries, raisins, dates, almonds, plums e.t.c could be seen in abundance and that too in extremely low rates. During the season of Eid, it is well known that you can't even find a way to move forward on the streets. Just to add, if you want to taste something delightful, then don't miss "Quality Sweets". They have few branches in the city with one at the Quetta Airport too.

Liaquat Bazaar
Serena Bazaar

As the work kept me busy, I'd the opportunity to go through other places and roads too. I passed through frightening places as well where number of incidents of killings had taken place. It would fill me with terror while hearing stories that how dreadfully people had been killed. Number of check-posts have been created there and they would check us after every few meters our car would drive. I seriously hope that someone addresses the problem of that community. While driving through various areas, I used to spend most of the time discussing the problems of local people like the scarce of hospitals and educational schools or colleges. The lack of basic resources which were not only aggravating their problems but were resulting in anger among the people too. They sense a certain deprivation among them and complain for not getting opportunities. Though they do not completely put the blame on others but also on the local tribes or people who don't want the development to take place in that region.

Quetta Cantonment is a relatively safe area which is safeguarded by the Army and the movement in that area is under their supervision. I'd the opportunity to go through that place too, apart from the people living over there the place gives more a resemblance of a military center. It has Asia's biggest Staff College where Senior professionals of Army are provided training from all over Pakistan. The biggest one lies in Great Britain, if you go through the history, you would know that Quetta in actual was a fort for the British. Rest of the cantonment provides basic facilities like parks, mosques, jogging tracks and parks e.t.c. Also, considering that people are more safer there, they don't deem it necessary to follow the cultural dress. The cantonment road also leads the way to Hanna Lake or Urak valley.

Hanna Lake

Hanna Valley

The valley is a heaven of fruits, one must give credit to organization "Merck" for doing the plantation there. What amazed me was the cultivation of pineapple trees, saffron and tulip in that area. On your way to the place, you will encounter such scenic and serene views. It is recommended that you go to the place early evening, that is the time when place is usually surrounded with clouds and beautiful mountains. The marvelous track paves the way for a beautiful lake which surrounds a beautiful island in the middle. People having four wheelers slide their vehicles down the valley, some dance on the pashtun tone, others come here for a long walk or for just capturing the stunning shots of the lake. I took some pictures which might even fail to depict the true beauty of that place.

Beautiful Plantation

People I met there were very welcoming, also must add that Pushtun kids are too adorable ! Trip doesn't here, much of the adventure has to be shared yet. We traveled all the way to Chaman too, read my blog-post for the trip here: Quetta to Chaman and Afghanistan Border !

Goodbye Quetta

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Back to Railway Tracks ... via Business Train.. 

During my childhood days, traveling via train for spending vacations in Lahore was always so much fun. With the passage of time, transport system turned into shambles. For the last number of years, I have rather traveled from planes, coaches or cars... sigh I miss those old days !

Recently, my cousin "Aemad" opted to travel via business train which charged Rs. 5000/ticket. I had requested him to provide me regular updates. I got enough messages and few pictures from him which I find worthy enough for consolidating them at one place. So just in case if you have ample time and need to save some bucks then following post might just help you like me for giving another thought of traveling via train.

Visited Karachi Cantt. Station by 1430 PST, there's a boarding process which all passengers have to go through. It was simple, however the luggage bogie was at the end. So everyone had to carry their luggage (if in excess of 10Kg). 10Kg per ticket is allowed with the passengers (as hand carry). As of now, this private business train has no lounge in Karachi but I got the update that lounge in Lahore was really good. It was comparatively better than Lahore Daewoo Terminal. 

Train seats were comfortable and reasonable, though not a huge difference compared to the seats of conventional trains. I was also told that the cabin itself was similar to like Karokaram Express. A capacity of 6 people per cabin with 9 total compartments, taking the cumulative figure to 54 per bogie.

dispenser was available at the end of each bogie

bogie as viewed from right from the front of his compartment

Washrooms are usually a nightmare in trains and you know you can't bear not to go for like so many hours ! So in any case during some time of journey, you are bound to download ;-) An update on this was that washrooms were satisfactory with two washrooms per bogie, one with commode and other with flush (WC)! A liquid handwash and rose petal toilet paper were at your service. Tap water flowed with wonderful pressure and a dedicated person was there to clean the toilet after use for ensuring cleanliness.

liquid handwash and tap with wonderful pressure

washroom with commode and muslim shower !

No internet facility was available as of now which they seemed to have been marketing. Probably they will later fix evo services in each bogie so that a handful of customers can be facilitated. The sockets in the train were perfectly running and my cousin benefited from it by charging his laptop and blackberry ! Soft pillows and blankets were available on demand. Nimko and biscuits were being served with evening tea or juice. Most of these items were from Bunny's (brand from Lahore) and it seemed to be their favorite corporate partner for snacks ! TV was there but what I got to know from him was that it never worked as unfortunately no channel was available. A host of customer service officers were roaming around, to make it really look like a business train they dressed them in black suits.

snacks time ! sponsored by bunny's

Food among all turned out to be the most exciting feature, it was made by PC Lahore and Marriott Karachi. Menu included Chicken Karhai, Pullao, Daal, Naan, Custard and unlimited drinks. You know what, all this was included in the ticket price, what else a man wants ? !! Dinner was served by 8 in the night whereas for breakfast they had omelet, bread, butter, jam and tea. No wonder, this was served by the similar catering service too.

early morning breakfast !

early morning breakfast

catering service by pc and marriott

It was mostly a non-stop journey as there were just couple of stopovers, one was at Rohri and other was at Khanewal. The former lasted for 15 minutes whereas later one was for around an hour. Interestingly both destinations were reached before the expected time ! 10 in the morning was supposed to be official arrival time in Lahore but then it reached half an hour earlier there too. Oh yes, journey lasted for around 17 ~ 18 hours.

I hope this brief post is enough to make you ponder for giving it a go ! I might just need to squeeze out some time from work to try it soon before God forbid the service deteriorates like other trains.... I hope not ! 

Sunday, July 24, 2011

Hitting a Self-Destruct Button.

Writing this piece of shit during one of those times when I give a damn to everything happening around me, one of those times when everything stands tall against you, one of those times when you try to break down the barriers but you are the one to crumble each time, one of those times when you want to abolish all your sins and rest in peace, one of those times when you think you are wasting your time here and no good is happening, one of those times when you think you have lost the race against time and the people around you, one of those times when you can only think about lamenting in different manners, maybe by swearing or maybe by crossing other limitations and give a beat to someone, maybe by breaking down the things or maybe even a suicidal attempt.

This materialistic world is such a bad place, be it anything the world won’t allow you to comeback. Everyone in the world has his/her own ways of taking the life as shit in different manners. I have my own ways, I take it in my own way. I am a loser of my own kind, why do I think that so ? I don’t know either. Why does my frame of mind behaves in such a way ? I don’t know either. So many state of events have happened that I regret about those and thus I like to be eccentric. I would prefer having a time alone rather than with a bunch of people, why do I like to be in my own shell ? , I don’t know either.

My betrayal happy face is a wrong face you get to see every morning, inside deep I am severely hurt. Now there are things you would like to know what are those events which have left a deep scar, but sorry I won’t. If I let you know then my life would be even more meaningless, so allow me to live peacefully and live harmoniously. I want to be a billionaire, NO and yes if you think that I have been double crossed by my girlfriend then you certainly got it wrong again. I am already broke and I don’t have time for my own self, leave alone the girl. If you really want to know then it’s you who is responsible, you are so dumb that you are still reading another dumb-man's article.

By now I am dead sure you must be thinking that I need a psychological treatment which might allow me to come out of the deadlock, but sorry and leave me like this. I prefer living a life full of hatred. Life’s so hard already, people say faith is the ability to not panic, if you worry then you didn’t pray, if you pray then you don’t need to worry. It goes other way for me, I have the faith in everything the life after death and the life before death. Life would end in few days maybe before I hit the next key or maybe when I would be holding a stick.

Everything seems so nonsensical about me but this is the way I am. It’s just that I love to be in pain, I don’t know why I love to bring so much trouble to myself, what’s up with the need to hit the self-destruct button ?. Why do I keep hitting myself with a hammer? because if feels so good when I stop.

Friday, May 6, 2011

Destiny beckons Techies

Multinet was in a grip of cricket fever, teams were busy curtailing their options and everyone was having a go at each other. We the Techies extremely doubted our chances at the outset of this tournament but we motivated ourselves by tagging us as unpredictable. Throughout this blog you will be able to perceive that why our team was so Pakistani like! We were short on practice and the lane with the parking lot reserved for training was usually preoccupied. Wait a minute, our bosses intervened and devised an intelligent stratagem.

We ran, we slashed, and we planned and nailed down the final eleven for each match. We could see through their wily machinations and the Men in Green decided that they will have an intrepid conduct in the battle against the opponents. Our boss even went on to make a statement that they will get through for the next stage. His statements are here, Relevant content from 2:04 - 2:18:

Finally the day embraced upon us for the first round stage, the day which whole of us have been waiting for, there were so many speculations and we were all so obsessed about that. We were supposed to lock horns for the first match with Promoters and the pulchritude of our first match was that both teams had hyped match winner. A lot had already been said about the most sensational battle of the bat and ball between the Champ Paras and Adroit Masood. We had our plans to circumvent their batting God.

The match had kick-off, Paras standing at the batting end, fields’ men ready. Masood had taken off with his glib and articulate run up towards him. What happened? Yes first ball BOWLED, Golden Duck. That ball had gone like a rocket towards the stumps and the bails came down. That infallible delivery was too much to ask from him and it was nothing short of filching the batsman's virginity. You want to feel the experience?

The runs from nowhere after the first delivery started leaking, boundaries coupled with plethora of wides piled up the pressure. We leaped to a complete low after the few overs which were replete of extras. Waseem really tussled in the start as his epoch lasted for quite a time though he later managed to make the batsman eat the balls. Atif struggled initially too but got back to track after quite a few run-ups.

We witnessed incessant signals of wides:

At this moment team needed to bolster their efforts as we were quite in doldrums and needed some diligent effort. Phlegmatic Shahzad was handed over the bowl who was a last minute entry in the squad. He managed to pull off an economical spell. Khurram with his controlled aggression delivered the last but a decent over and managed to get wickets at crucial time too. Our bowlers had got great assistance from Atif who was as quick as younger Akmal on the field and proved a point that catches win matches.

The result was, de facto, jumbo total on the scorecard. An electrifying performance was needed for being able to manage a respectable net run rate. We needed a batting line up to explode rather than imploding, someone who could lacerate the counterparts. Team management made a forthright decision by sending M. Adeel who was reminiscent of Inzimam and Rafaqat who was the antithesis of Yousaf. Both of them were shaky in the start, they edged a few deliveries for the singles and doubles to get the scorecard ticking. Rafaqat finally managed to hit a sublime four for the boundary towards long on. Dot deliveries had already aggrandized the pressure and M. Adeel at the other end could feel the heat of missing the deliveries. He needed a shot that could revive the innings. During this moment of crux his calm and composed attitude prevailed. On his last delivery he managed to pull off a great shot towards long mid on for six. The shot was the message to the opposition that the men in green are no jest. It was all hand eye coordination and no feet:

The next man in Masood, his batting style has been my paragon of virtue, he just came and conquered. The guy has such confidence that he could hit each ball for six at his own will; he had the ability to whack the bowler all around the park. We knew that he was gutsy against fast bowlers and could easily take them to the cleaners. His shots were as good as quashing a rebellion. Nothing different happened when he faced his very first ball and the other two balls which followed him. Yes, three consecutive deliveries and we witnessed three sixes. Bowler was pawned and teared apart by the batsman, no wonder the fielding team was molested against the skillful Masood. To feel the moment, you gotta watch this:

He had hit delectable fours after the three deliveries and on his way back when he had almost sealed a win, he was lauded by the other players of his team for the awesome innings. The match was soon shrouded with a win and we celebrated a victory by ensuring that we had a good net run rate. The opposition was crestfallen and a place for us in the knockout stage was almost secured.

Our managers chipped in and improvised us not to take the next team lightly and there is no option but to win. We were bereft of some fine players as they ratified that each one of us get a chance atleast to play for a side. They discussed and divulged a final team to all of us. Many of us who were selected for the next match couldn't train during the last few days. To their help there was a jogging track around the circumference of a cricket ground. Our next match was with the team who was just like the archipelago of Caribbean Islands, just like them the unit consisted of few players from multiple departments. At the eleventh hour, their manager cum captain was able to trade the players.

We were supposed to bowl first and we were exhorted by our managers to contain them and avoid the botches we made while bowling in the first match. Masood came and delivered a fine over, next came in the Annas who effaced the bowl on his pants nicely just like a spinner does. He was the only spinner witnessed in the whole round yesterday. The batsman tried to dance down the pitch on each delivery but all efforts went in vain as his breaks were par above their batting standards. One of his clips from the practice sessions is here.

The moment had arrived for me to make the ball talk. From the bowling end I could see two lefties who were about to face me, that baffled me a bit as I scuffled to get the ball in line. Couple of times I changed the sides as I finally was able to settle with the perfect run-up. The semblance of my action was to that of Malinga and as I gained rhythm I was able to transmute my dreams into reality by bowling Yorkers right down to the toes. The highlight of the over was though an exceptional catch which Kapil Dev had taken towards the short leg. He was standing still the moment ball had left but I couldn’t believe that his judgment was amazing. I saw him running towards the ball as the ball glued in his hands! We were a happy lot that moment as we raced towards each other. The transit moment of celebration for a one handed catch by Kapil wasn't much different than this:

Adeel H joined the bowling attack as he had the ability to swing a ball a bit which could deceive a batsman. He bowled a nippy spell which had both dots and extras. Khurram like the last match bowled a better over than even the last one. His unerring spell with an aggressive attitude haunted the opposition further as they weren't being able to put enough runs on the scorecard.

Except Masood, we were deprived of our best batsmen and there was too much dependency on him. Our batsmen came and missed deliveries. Aziz unfortunately was run out in no different manner than this:

Khurram had an ugly touch with the bat and Fahad did a Misbah there.

Adeel H. added few doubles and singles but series of unfortunate events continued despite a clean hit for six and four by Masood but he had to retire from the innings. One of the sexiest shots of the night was hit by Abid, he had hit cover off the ball and oh he flashed and he flashed hard.

Few runs added were a celestial joys for us as they assuaged our pain for stabling the net run rate on which we were dependent in case of a loss.

It was turning out to be a tricky chase under the lights and both the sides knew the importance of the game. Our tail-enders Irfan and Annas marched towards the pitch. They were extremely prudent and smart to make sure they run whether they leave, edge or strike. We players were quite tensed as we were helpless but each run scored was a respiration process for us. That night even luck was with us, the bowler granted us with 5 byes due to a wide being bowled which a keeper and a third man couldn't stop and bowl raced away towards the boundary.

It was turning out to be a game where anything could happen. The over was already turning out to be a lucrative one for us. It had everything written all over it, free hits, byes, extras and what not? Target was achieved when Irfan managed to play an absolute master stroke with soft hands on the last delivery of the match. We met fortunes and the opposition met adversity.

We couldn't stop our emotions as we descended upon and intruded the arena to taste the victory. We jumped over each other and we exulted after the win. The celebration was nothing short than this:

Techies ousted both the teams, yet the job is not over. We have a knockout stage next month to take place, though whether we win or not we are still the heroes. The window between the stages is to make sure that we identify team’s Achilles’ heel and pick the best lot for the next venue.