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Karachi: Fairgrounds, demos, devils and more

By Ali Arqam: Zulfiqar Mirza’s theatrics, Altaf Hussain’s histrionics, rabble-rouser Qureshi’s anti climax (of Nuclear Arsenal under threat episode), Munawwar Hasan’s  ‘No one loves me’ rants, Fazlur Rehman’s alarm bells of Islam in danger, the new theatrical production is a rally by JuD for “Difa-e-Pakistan”. Welcome to Karachi fairgrounds. First swearing Mirza damned MQM for posing threat to Pakistan’s integrity, then Altaf Hussain waved the map of so called balkanization of Pakistan. Thereafter, Imran came with a life line for Pakistan (he will only share the details when he will come to power) then Munawwar Hasan called on the bearded and hijabis to save Pakistan. Most recently Fazlur Rehman brandished a red flag and now Hafiz Saeed of JuD,  Ahmad Ludhianvi of ASWJ and others have jumped on the bandwagon to defend state of … Read entire article »

Filed under: Politics

Challenge the Hegemony of the Pak-Army

By Danish Khan: In the apprentice of political economy, there are distinct theories to elucidate the lack of development in the developing countries. Some political economists point towards the colonial days to trace back the roots of the contemporary social and political institutions of the developing countries, while others rest blame on the geography of the developing world, and the variance to the doctrine of the free market capitalism as some of the possible sources of the nuance. The inclusion and the close examination of the social and political institutions of the developing countries are certainly worth discussing, while I cannot say same about the other posed explanations. One of the few possible explanations of the developing countries to being socially, politically and economically astern are their historical “extractive colonial institutions” which … Read entire article »

Filed under: Opinion

Mayagate and its aftermath

by Aysha Raja Last weekend saw the widespread condemnation and sustained social media campaign against Maya Khan culminate with the firing of the contentious host from Samaa TV. I would proudly have claimed it a blow against the increasingly oppressive bhaigarat brigade, had the word “blow” not dredged up some disturbing imagery of it’s own. Dissent, in the wake of the unfortunate episode of Subah Saverey Maya kay Sath, swamped the interwebs in all shapes and forms … Read entire article »

Filed under: Uncategorized

Our inane leader

By Usmann Rana One of the rallying points in favor of the rise of Pakistani politician Imran Khan, apart from the utter disillusionment of the masses and corruption of both the major and leading parties, has been his charismatic personality. But Khan’s recent interview to NDTV’s Barkha Dutt, seemed to have lost that element and for once laid bare the stark contradictions between his own statements showing his inanity. For example, Khan believes, to quote him, ‘the age of martial law is over… Whatever happens I don’t see military takeover.’ Yes, Mr Khan it is. But the ‘military Raj’ has not ended, it has found new ways to penetrate back into the Pakistani society. To believe that military makes its presence felt only through martial laws and coups is naïve. Furthermore according … Read entire article »

Filed under: Opinion, Politics

City by the Sea: The future of Karachi’s Coastline

This documentary explores alternatives to haphazard development along Karachi’s coastline in light of the basic principles of urban planning. The Urdu version is up here: … Read entire article »

Filed under: Pakistan

International Commission of Jurists statement on Husain Haqqani

INTERNATIONAL COMMISSION OF JURISTS Commission internationale de juristes – Comisión Internacional de Juristas ” Protecting and promoting human rights through the Rule of Law” PRESS RELEASE For immediate release – 25 January 2012 Former Pakistan Ambassador to the US faces threats to his life – ICJ Geneva, Switzerland – The International Commission of Jurists (ICJ) today expressed its grave concern for the infringement of rights of Hussain Haqqani, former Pakistan Ambassador to the United States of America. Hussain Haqqani has been embroiled in a political and judicial conflict stemming from a leaked political memorandum that he was alleged to have authored, only a few days after al-Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden was killed by US military forces. “Hussain Haqqani faced a vicious media trial following which the Supreme Court of Pakistan on a petition filed debarred him from travelling abroad, despite … Read entire article »

Filed under: Politics

Happy birthday, Bibi Bakhtawar Bhutto Zardari!

Happy birthday, Bibi Bakhtawar Bhutto Zardari!

By Saria Benazir. “Benazir Lives”… I’ve always have heard this and possess an unyielding credence in these words. Nevertheless, as I turn up to gaze at the heavens in moments of obscurity, she is there to placate me and to grant me hope and direction. The instant, I see myself ripped by obstructions, she is there to give me valor and vigor. The empathy twinges into trillions and splits my soul as I heed of her … Read entire article »

Filed under: Benazir Bhutto, Opinion

See No Evil

By Ali Aftab Saeed: The Pakistan Telecommunication Authority blocks access to porn sites in Pakistan. The central theme of this piece is not porn per se, but the pros and cons of the decision to ban it. In principle of course, if we decide as a nation that we shouldn’t have porn only a click away, then we should have the right to ban it. What is unacceptable is for some agency to control the flow and content of information. Because when authorities decide the content people should have access to, it is usually not for the sake of providing quality information. The concern shown by people about the potential misuse of SOPA and PIPA is a valid one. Porn may be very few Pakistanis’ cup of tea (or is it?), … Read entire article »

Filed under: Opinion

Outside in

Outside in

Premature emancipation – The Shamsul Anwar affair By Shahbaz Ali Khan Shahbaz, a former Industry relations and PR professional, has spent the past 8 years experimenting with the frontiers of professional competence by insisting on not specializing in anything but thinking, communicating and writing.     Social media usage has changed people’s perception of what human experiences and contact means. Therefore, what was once dehumanized, is now part of the process of’re-humanization’. Social networks are experiencing a new kind … Read entire article »

Filed under: Opinion

Defending democracy

By Saad Hafiz: It seems at the first sign of cracks in a democratic setup in Pakistan, a battle cry goes out from media pundits, back-door politicians and professional pontificators alike to end or derail the democratic process. As the knives and bayonets are sharpened, headlines like “End the farce”, “Noose tightens” and “Government isolated” dominate in the media. Many affluent Pakistanis, enjoying the fruits of Western democracies, hypocritically chime in to denigrate democracy and espouse the … Read entire article »

Filed under: Politics

Kindly Keep Your Cameras Away!!

Raza Habib Raja Right now I am feeling like holding a video camera which can live telecast to the entire country and follow Ms Maya Khan constantly. Not only that I would like to give nasty spins to her even “harmless” routine conversations with men (such as the grocery store keeper) and project these as sinful affairs. The feeling of being constantly hounded, misinterpretation of completely normal conversations on the national electronic media and the resulting embarrassment … Read entire article »

Filed under: Uncategorized

An Australian takes issue over skewed article on Pakistan by Time Magazine

The Editor, Time Magazine Dear Editor,  I recently returned from a charitable trip to Pakistan, whereby I visited both Karachi and Islamabad. I spoke with several universities, key businesses, prominent business leaders and several religious people from all generations….On the day I returned to the office, someone had placed your magazine (January 16, 2012), on my desk. I read with interest your article on Karachi and the city in doom. For a person to have just returned from the very same place that your magazine described was somewhat bizarre, so I read with great detail your writer (Andrew Marshall’s) account. Let me begin by saying that I often flick through your magazine and find the articles of great interest, but on this particular day and this particular article, I found certain comments to … Read entire article »

Filed under: Opinion

Everything is More Fun in Pakistan!

Everything is More Fun in Pakistan!

“This is just a off shoot of the new “More Fun in Philippines” campaign by the Philippines tourism board. Clearly I’ve just used random pictures I found off the net and not really promoted tourism to Pak in most of them. Now if only I had a good camera… and any photography skills we could actually turn this into something good Join me! ”– by Madiha Talat (view the whole excellent album here).  … Read entire article »

Filed under: Humor, Images, Pakistan

Target killings in Gilgit-Baltistan

By Dr. Zaeem Zia Pakistan in my opinion is a bundle of strange contradictions. We always beat the drums and propagate tyranny of Indian and Israeli forces for what is happening in Kashmir and Palestine and yet are criminally negligent of things which are happening on our own soil. Gilgit-Baltistan is my home town and  is strategically located in an important region and lies right in the middle of four nuclear powers, India, China, Pakistan, and Tajikistan. There used to be a time when it was a tourist heaven but now it has turned into a hell on earth. Peace and fraternity was our identity, but random killings are a routine tradition in Gilgit now. Our ancestors were once famous for brotherhood, and now the progeny has turned into worst enemies based on sectarian issues. The question arises, as who is responsible for all the bloodshed in Gilgit-Baltistan? What makes people of Gilgit-Baltistan to … Read entire article »

Filed under: Uncategorized

The Lavish Wedding in Dubai…

Jang group is the largest media group in the country and in recent times its power has only increased. Its electronic arm, GEO TV, is one of the most influential television stations in Pakistan and is known to promote populist narratives according to which politicians are corrupt and operate with no accountability. Lifestyles of politicians is often targeted and any “exuberance” is projected as complete insensitivity to the plight of the suffering poor of the country. … Read entire article »

Filed under: culture, Media