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[Was: Politically Correct] Minner's coment and sugestion


#1

I was wondering if anyone else out there was is as disturbed as I am
about the conditions under which the materials we all use are mined?

I am glad to hear about the awareness and concerns of the fellow dealers
about such an important subject. There could be three ways to deal with
this situation:- a) Close the eyes and let the things go as they are
already moving with an excuse that what difference can one person make;;
b) the second way is to atleast register personnel protest on public forum
and think that one’s job is finished;; c) The third and correct way is to
not only register the protest but also take initiative and persuade the
fellow dealers to take some corrective measures. I brought this subject
for discussion among some of my friends in Gem and Facet forum and 24
caret network a month or so ago when this sad incident took place. Lot of
suggestions came. I thought after reading the recent post on orchid to
express my views as a miner and steps we have started taking to do some
corrective measures. I don’t know much about African mining and political
conditions. Our mining operation is in Pakistan and Afghanistan. My
following comments will be based upon my personnel experience in these
regions. By explaining how and why we miners intentionally or in
intentionally exploit the labors their, would be I guess indulging into an
endless discussion since most of these mining locations are in tribal
areas and are run by hundred of years old rules and not by the new
civilized rules as you all experience here. These traditional rules have
both very good to offer to the people but some vested interest people some
time twist them to their interest and thus the exploitation starts and
incident like Tanzania are the expected outcome. Now the most important
part, how could we make a difference being so far away from those
places…not buying I guess is not gonna solve the problem but rather
contribute to increase the hardship there, since the core reason, as per I
have understand, is the iron curtain drawn by the wholesalers and some
miners over those mining areas. Though it is not a good disclosure
business wise for me as a miner and direct marketeer here but it is a fact
that this curtain make us make five six hundred percent profit for the
goods we mine and market here directly. The only way we can make things
better over there is to remove the iron curtain from there…this could be
done by all of your commutative efforts as buyers…make sure while buying
from the distributor, claiming to be the direct importer, or miner etc.,
that he is giving back part of his profit back to the people in shape of
better working conditions, hospitals etc. etc…Internet is a very strong
medium and in coming two three years it will for sure contribute a lot in
destroying that iron curtain. The steps I have personally taken are that I
have invited my distributor (Mr. Joseph Lanes (cj) of GBA Ltd) to visit
our mines their and we are leaving in few days. I have plans to make it
possible for all my friends and buyers to come directly to our mines in
Pakistan and Afghanistan for visits…such visits may look as a UN wise
steps initially by my family business wise but I am sure this will turn
out better both for us as miners and the local labors there. I would like
to encourage all fellow miners and distributors to organize a such channel
for all the people dealing in gemstones so as lot of people could visit
the sites. This would develop lot of confidence among the local people
and would also contribute in the development of those areas and will
result in the better working condition there. Believe me, all this is
very difficult but it is not impossible and we should always remember that
by closing our eyes to obvious exploitation will not acquit us from the
responsibility. I am sorry for this long letter but couldn’t resist to
write on such an important subject despite that I was very busy myself
today.

Fazalur Qazi
S&F Gems Pakistan, California
213-258-3116 (California)
92-91-241007 ( Peshawar, Pakistan)
92-91-241432 ( Peshawar, Paksitan)