Verum took a deep breath. She could smell the fragrance of various flowers from Felix’s garden. It felt absolutely divine. Suddenly, her crystal ball summoned her. It was time for some world-gazing.

She said, “Sorry, Felix. I have to go. I have a feeling that my crystal ball has some news for me.”

Verum rushed back to the dorm room and sat in front of her crystal ball. Sure enough, it had important news for her. She closed her eyes and tried to understand what it meant.

Verum said, “Today’s news is about Afghanistan, a country in crisis. The Taliban’s takeover has left the country in a deep economic crisis which has led to a food crisis.” 

The Taliban, an extremist group ruled Afghanistan from 1996 to 2001. The US invaded Afghanistan and overthrew the Taliban from power. It mostly kept the Taliban at bay for nearly 20 years. But in 2021, US President Joe Biden started the process of withdrawing US troops from the war-torn country. And now, 20 years later, the Taliban took over Afghanistan once again in August 2021.

“A food crisis?” cued Orak.

“Afghanistan has a population of 40 million. Over half of these people are predicted to face acute food shortages. Meanwhile, nine million people are already said to be on the brink of starvation,” replied Verum.

“Pakistan, Iran, and the United Arab Emirates (UAE) are among the countries that have helped Afghanistan with food and medical supplies,” added Verum, “Even India was trying to send 50,000 tonnes of wheat to the war-torn country. However, there was a barrier.”

“What was it?” said Orak.

“Pakistan,” answered Verum, “Pakistan lies between India and Afghanistan. To get to Afghanistan, the Indian trucks carrying wheat have to pass through Pakistan. However, the relations between India and Pakistan are strained.”

“Oh, no,” said Orak, “Will Afghanistan have to do away with the grains?”

“No, Afghanistan had requested Pakistan to allow the trucks to travel through its territory a month ago. Fortunately, Pakistan’s Prime Minister Imran Khan permitted the trucks to enter Pakistan through the Wagah Border,” said Verum.

“There is something to be learned here,” said Orak, “To help someone in need, it is a good idea to amend ties, even if it is momentary.”