Stories published in April, 2015

A C-section does NOT make you “less of a mother”

Last night, as I browsed the internet, a ridiculous statement at Inquisitr caught my eye. “C-section makes you less of a mother, says Pastor Patrick” Not only did I find his statement extremely offensive but it also reminded me of the sarcastic remark a ‘new’ grandmother once gave, whom I had met at a hospital. “Hum ne toh bohat takleef se bachay paida kiye tha. Aaj kal toh larkian dard se bachnay kay liye jhutput C-section kera ke farigh ho jati hain.” (We endured a lot of pain during our time while giving birth. Nowadays, girls opt for C-sections just to avoid the pain.) Her daughter-in-law had just given ...

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Mr X, nothing but a flawed imitation of Hollow Man

Mr X is an Indian sci-fi thriller directed by Vikram Bhatt, starring Emraan Hashmi in the leading role as an anti-terrorist inspector named Raghu. The movie defies logic as to why anyone would want to pursue this particular genre which revolves around movies like The Invisible Man – it has simply been overdone. Mr X, all in all, is a poor amalgamation of gimmicky execution and a rehash of movies such as Hollow Man and Mr India. Adding insult to the injury is the below par and amateurish CGI animation which is a far cry from the advanced animation we have grown accustomed to. It is ...

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Aao Parhao – A teacher can use all the help they can get

A school is so much more than just a series of classrooms. A school is so much more than just a number of lessons. And an educated person is so much more than a literate person. Education entails all the different facets that are crucial to the mental and physical development of a person as a responsible citizen of society. At the fountainhead of western civilization in ancient Athens, education included the arts and physical education as part of the curriculum rather than extra-curricular activities. Far too often, schools in Pakistan are focused on grades and memorisation of lessons over a ...

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British on paper and not a Saudi, so am I a Pakistani?

I don’t know what I am, who I am or where I come from. I have been shrouded by such confusion throughout my existence. On paper, I am a British citizen and I hold the customary red passport which confirms this to be the case… but I wasn’t even born in England! I have absolutely no cultural or ancestral links to Britain, whatsoever. My own birthplace was Saudi Arabia, a nation that has vociferously denied me any citizenship rights because I am not an indigenous Saudi by birth. My father was posted there as a surgeon and, once he retired, he ...

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Pakistan cricket: On the road to self-destruction

We are a country of ticking time-bombs, infatuated with an urge to self-destruct. With every step forward, we so graciously sprint a mile back and are left reeling for stability.   Several articles have highlighted that our cricket team hasn’t moved beyond the 90s. We’re thrown into a whirlwind of comparisons with other nations but with every other facet of Pakistan regressing (religiously, socially, politically), why would cricket be any different? The problem with Pakistan hasn’t ever been its lack of resources – rather the correct usage of them. We are rash with our emotions, we make decisions on a whim and ...

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NA-246 by-elections: Not as democratic as you think

The by-elections in the much hyped NA-246 constituency was a day of infamy for Karachi and its citizens, and I feel the federal and provincial governments owe an apology to us, the citizens. This constituency managed to gather an unprecedented interest as the by-elections were announced in the wake of the Rangers’ raid on Muttahida Qaumi Movement’s (MQM) headquarters and a controversial ‘confessional’ statement issued by Saulat Mirza behind bars. The entire media, including political parties, sat in judgment to defame the party and created a frenzy predicting the coming of doomsday for MQM. I am in no way remotely linked with MQM, yet I am ...

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How social media is saving lives in Nepal

It wasn’t too long ago that Kathmandu, Nepal was viewed as one of the most beautiful, and most historical, tourist destinations in the entire world, only to see it suddenly and very tragically crumble in a mere blink of an eye, as one of world’s most deadliest earthquakes rampaged the country this past Saturday. Millions of lives were affected, by the massive 7.8 magnitude earthquake, with many trying to find ways to flee the nation, as the death toll rose close to 5000, with several thousand injured. Although Nepal is no stranger to natural disasters, an earthquake of this ...

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Pakistan one of the least racist countries? Tell that to the Pakhtuns

The recent ‘revelation’ by the Washington Post about Pakistan being among the most racially tolerant countries in the world, was met by jubilation by the nationalists. However, much of the Pakhtun community being systematically oppressed, mocked and expelled from the country, was offline and unavailable for comment. As a liberal who has long decried our nation’s exquisitely racist attitude towards Pakhtuns, Hazaras, Jews and any mound of protoplasm not strictly conforming to our expectation of what a ‘real Pakistani’ looks like, the study was, at first, humbling. Though I was certain that I hadn’t imagined all that racism, perhaps we were still ...

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Baltimore riots: Racial prejudice in the US strikes again

We live in harrowing times. While many are under the illusion that the 21st century has rid us of our inherent prejudices and injustices, that is clearly not the case. And while the West supposedly dubs itself as the emblem of the modern world, I feel there are many examples which render this claim untruthful. Be it the sexist and ageist slurs being hurled at Hillary Clinton for running for office; or the multiple lawsuits filed against Abercrombie and Fitch for their classist policies; or Russia’s anti-LGBT laws (even though they call themselves a progressive state); or the recent racial attack in Ferguson, USA, where an African American ...

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You’re not the marriageable kind

An image of Akbar, her ex-fiancé, flashed into her mind as she elegantly sat waiting in her small, dark living room. A lonely candle flickered unenthusiastically on a wooden table by the window and the scent of the earth before the rain perforated the room. “Had I not come into your life, you would’ve destroyed yourself!” Akbar would say to her sternly. This memory of him haunted her. Choti (small), as she was affectionately known as, laughed a lot, travelled, was ambitious, made friends easily – perhaps had too much personality, if there is such a thing. Unfortunately, this approachability was routinely and falsely ...

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