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Arvind Krishna Mehrotra: From Lahore to Oxford by Way of Allahbad

Arvind Krishna Mehrotra: From Lahore to Oxford by Way of Allahbad: Oxford University is to appoint a Professor of Poetry and the nominations are to close next week. Two poets, Derek Walcott, winner of Nobel Prize for Literature in 1992, and Ruth Padel, great-great-granddaughter of Charles Darwin, are in the running. And both are considered favourites. The dark horse and a new entrant in the race is Arvind Krishna Mehrotra, born in Lahore and a Professor at Allahabad University. … Read entire article »

Filed under: Pakistan

The challenge from the Taliban is Ideological, not Military

by Asim Salahuddin The current crisis of militancy gripping Pakistan is the most serious threat to the integrity of the State since the loss of East Pakistan in the war of 1971. Pakistan today is surrounded by hostile neighbours, is crippled economically and is slowly being crushed under the weight of world public opinion that it is a terrorist State, which is being generated by its supposed ally America. With Balouchistan already rumbling with a separatist insurgency which has not yet thankfully gained popular traction, the armed conflict which is being fought with Taliban forces in Swat, Buner and Dir is threatening to roll back the writ of the Pakistani State to just the provinces of Sindh and Punjab. A solution must urgently be found to prevent further bloodshed on both sides … Read entire article »

Filed under: Identity, Islam, Pakistan, Taliban, Terrorism

Poem: Waris Shah Vs Aitzaz Ahsan

by Bradistan Waris Shah Vs. Aitzaz Ahsan (In the Court of Supreme Judge ALLAH The Almighty) A Tribute to Late Amrita Pritam aaj aakhaaN Aitzaz nuuN aaj aakhaN AITZAZ AHSAN nuuN, kitoN Chamber vichchoN bol, te aaj kitab-e -Knoon daa koii aglaa varkaa phol ik Uthyaa sii Wada Kanoon Daan, tuuN likh likh maare Byaan, aaj SWAT DE Dhiyaan rondiaa, tainuN Aitzaz Ahsan nuN kahen Jaag dardmandaaN diaa dardiaa, Jaag Pakistani Jaag … Read entire article »

Filed under: Activism, ancient civilisations, Arts and Crafts, Citizens, culture, Democracy, Europe, Fiction, Heritage, History, human rights, Identity, India, Islam, Islamism, journalism, Justice, Languages, lawyers movement, Left, Literature, Love, Media, minorities, movements, Music, North-West Frontier Province, Pakistan, Philosophy, poetry, Politics, Punjabi, Religion, Rights, Rural, Society, south asia, Sufism, Taliban, Terrorism, youth

The unenlightened elite —Nadeem Ul Haque

Excerpt: “Who offers the poor hope? Certainly not the government! Certainly not the donors with their minor employees! The liberal elite made big promises and delivered nothing. The promise of globalisation and liberalisation has rightly lost its lustre in the minds of the poor. Theatre, cinema, or any form of intellectual activity that will offer an alternative vision has been zoned out. Where should the poor look for a vision; who offers them hope; who offers them community; who gives them some opportunity; who gives them the vision of a just society? Think about it. It is the mosque and the maulvi. Mosques remain totally unregulated, need no zoning permission and have been actively encouraged by the state. Not surprisingly, the mosque is the only community centre for the excluded … Read entire article »

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Pakistani media continues to glorify Islamo-fascism

by Abbas Zaidi On 17 April the entire electronic media brought Abdul Aziz to every household of Pakistan. He was shown coming from an inner room of the notorious Lal Mosque into the prayer hall where he led the Friday prayer as he used to do till he was arrested on terrorism charges in 2007. He was set free on the evening of 16 April which the media beamed across the country as “Breaking News”. After he came out of the jail and settled down into a jeep, he gave a brief interview in which he ominously said, “Pakistan was created in the name of Islam but due to non-implementation of the Islamic sections and law and justice a tension is spreading in religious circles”. Before leaving, Abdul Aziz eulogized the … Read entire article »

Filed under: Islam, Islamism, Media, Pakistan, Religion

Is Pakistan collapsing? A father and a citizen speaks

by Ali Dayan Hasan At my daughter’s annual school parent’s day event in Lahore last month, the tension was palpable. Bewildered at the speed with which this innocuous annual event had transformed into a maximum security operation, anxious parents filed in their hundreds past security guards, metal detectors and bag searches into Theatre Number Two of the Alhamra Cultural Complex – a modernist structure that the citizens of Lahore would tell you proudly is amongst the … Read entire article »

Filed under: Afghanistan, Al Qaeda, North-West Frontier Province, Pakistan, Sindh, state, Taliban

Hillary says US also responsible for crisis in Pakistan

Shaheryar Azhar, The Forum Long time coming, but nevertheless good that it came….. Saturday, April 25, 2009 ISLAMABAD: US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton on Friday said the US was also partly responsible for the present conditions in Pakistan as it had virtually abandoned the country after the Soviets left Afghanistan. “It wasn’t a bad investment to end the Soviet Union, but let’s be careful what we sow, because we will harvest. So we then left Pakistan. We said, okay, fine, you deal with the Stingers that we’ve left all over your country. You deal with the mines that are along the border. And by the way, we don’t want to have anything to do with you,” Clinton said while testifying before a Congressional committee according to a foreign television channel. After the downfall of … Read entire article »

Filed under: Pakistan, Taliban, Terrorism, USA

Naseebo Lal – another victim of Pakistan's right wing

by Farough Taliban are imposing a moral code on society, they have banned music and murdered dancers and singers in Pashtunkhhawa and Swat, even yesterday a Pashtu singer was murdered in Peshawer, Gul Bahar Bano the famous Gazal singer has lost her sanity according to Dawn, Pakistan’s parliament recently conceded to Talibans and passed Nizam e Adal regulation which according to human rights experts is against Universal Charter of Human Rights and Basic Human Rights enshrined … Read entire article »

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Pakistan isn't falling: CNN Commentary

By Peter Bergen CNN National Security Analyst (CNN) — In the past few weeks as the Pakistani Taliban have marched ever closer to the capital, Islamabad, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton has sounded the alarm about the threat posed by the militants, who she said in congressional testimony pose “a mortal threat to the security and safety of our country and the world.” Some media commentators have even warned that the populous, nuclear-armed state might fall into the hands of the religious zealots. … Read entire article »

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Obituary:Javad Nurbakhsh- A Sufi Soul

A leading Iranian Sufi, he was also a noted psychiatrist, author and medical clinic director By Leonard Lewisohn The Guardian, Wednesday 7 January 2009 The master of a branch of the Nimatullahi order of Sufism in Iran, Dr Javad Nurbakhsh not only furthered the cause of his religion, but was also one of the country’s leading psychiatrists. When the upheavals of the Iranian revolution in 1979 caused him and many others to emigrate, he continued to organise the practice of Sufism abroad till his death in Britain at the age of 81. Sufism is the mystical tradition within Islam whose followers – Sufis, or dervishes – espouse a religion of love based on poetry, music, and utilising various esoteric contemplative practices, the most important of which is a type of interior prayer … Read entire article »

Filed under: ancient civilisations, culture, Europe, Heritage, History, human rights, Identity, Iran, Islam, Love, Philosophy, poetry, Religion, Sufism, Travel, Writers

Cripps and India's Partition-II

Further to Usman Sadozai’s post on this subject, here is a second part of the article by A.G. NOORANI The concluding part of the captioned article. ALLEN CLARKE records the secret parleys between Sir Stafford Cripps and Pethick Lawrence (and A.V. Alexander) with Gandhi and Vallabhbhai Patel. Colin Reid of The Daily Telegraph told Wavell on August 3: “He had recently had an interview with Jinnah, and had some interesting impressions. He is sure that J. wants … Read entire article »

Filed under: Pakistan

Pakistan's Swat Nightmare

By Simon Tisdall  It seemed like a good idea at the time. Rather than endlessly engage in inconclusive, on-off guerrilla warfare with Taliban insurgents, Pakistan’s security forces cut a deal. The Islamists would have de facto local administrative control, including implementation of sharia law. In return, they would accept federal government authority, stop fighting, and lay down their arms. … Read entire article »

Filed under: Pakistan

Time to make a choice: Jinnah or Taliban

Dr. Ijazul Hassan (Writing in The Nation) The time has come when we have to decide whether we want a Pakistan of the Quaid or the Taliban. The latter had said: “You are free to go to your mosques, to your temples, …because that has nothing to do with the business of the state…and that Pakistan will not be a theological state.” However, as soon as we lost our beloved Quaid, we passed the Objectives Resolution in 1949 which was directly in conflict with the basic concept of the state he had created at the risk of his life. … Read entire article »

Filed under: Pakistan

Pakistan's quick-sand

From Georgetown on Faith By Katherine Marshall The video shows the brutal beating of a young girl, well covered in her burka and red trousers, screaming and struggling as she is held down by a man and a woman. The scene symbolizes the tensions tearing Pakistan apart and it raises a host of questions. Is this what Sharia law is about? What does this primitive justice by bearded Taliban leaders portend for Pakistan? For south Asia? What’s caused the Swat Valley, a region celebrated for peace, civility, and beauty, to change so rapidly? And what can be done about it? Make no mistake, these questions are of vital importance for the people concerned, but also for the United States and the world. Akbar Ahmed, professor at American University, has from day one … Read entire article »

Filed under: Pakistan

Redefining Pakistan

Asif Salahuddin has sent this exclusive contribution for the Pak Tea House. The views expressed here are those of the author’s and we welcome debate on this argument. RR ‘Khilafah is the only solution for Pakistan’ Pakistan today finds itself very much at the centre of the world’s headlines, unfortunately though for almost entirely the wrong reasons. Just in the last few weeks alone we have witnessed an unprecedented level of turmoil in the country – the outrageous attacks on the police academy outside Lahore and on the Sri Lankan cricket team inside the city, the political theatrics of rule in Punjab, the Long March episode followed by the subsequent reappointment of the Chief Justice and the continued violation of sovereignty and killings via US drone attacks – indeed Pakistan as a … Read entire article »

Filed under: Islam, Pakistan, state, USA, violence, war, World