KARACHI: A commendable social media campaign that has gone largely unnoticed in the days after its success was the fruit boycott that took place from June 2nd to June 4th. Although the boycott polarised public opinion in Karachi, with one side arguing that it is not fair for poor fruit vendors who barely make enough to feed their families already, the logic that swayed the masses into supporting this effort should not be neglected: unfortunately, it is a fruit boycott every day for the poor people in Karachi this Ramazan. Fruits have become a luxury item for the lower socioeconomic strata.
The fruit boycott was a serious initiative for rights protection against inflation in this country. Above all, it was an apolitical movement that demonstrated the strength and unity of consumers. It is important to recognise that the citizens of a city more known for their propensity of violence decided to join together to raise their voices in a sensible and practical manner. This boycott manifested the evolution of societal integration in our context, alongside the growth of empathy and compassion for the common man.
Many opposing the boycott claimed that citizens should protest against lawn and other branded items instead. Sadly, they missed the point. Fruit is not supposed to be an indulgence like clothes, quite the contrary, fruits are a nutritional need. More importantly, the success of this strike means that people can employ this strategy to pressure other business mafias as well.
Published in The Express Tribune, June 15th, 2017.