Stories published in February, 2016

Altaf Hussain simply explained human biology. What was so vulgar about it?

Once again, Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaaf (PTI) supporters were quick to criticise Altaf Hussain’s recent speech – mostly on social media. The outburst obviously made me curious about the Muttahida Quami Movement (MQM) chief’s seemingly offensive words. I managed to find the speech in question from February 16, 2016, which he made to workers and office bearers at his party headquarter, famously known as Nine Zero. At about 9:30 minutes into the video, he began speaking about reproduction by quoting verse 13 of chapter 49, which is ‘Surah Hujurat’, of the Holy Quran. But what could be considered the most important part of his speech was ...

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Gods of Egypt – an empty CGI spectacle

Trailers do not do a good enough job of selling  movies properly these days. Most of the time the entire film is ruined for us in a space of three minutes, while in other cases, they try to mask their film’s mediocrity by showcasing a handful of good moments in the trailer. This is done in order to save the remaining mediocre movie for suckers who pay to watch it. In the case of Gods of Egypt, at least the trailer sold the movie for what it is; a big-budget, whitewashed misappropriation of Egyptian culture and mythology with lots and lots ...

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America must decide between its people and guns

US politics has taken a nose dive. In the run up to the November 2016 presidential election, public opinion is going crazy. At a time when Donald Trump, Marco Rubio and Ted Cruz and are hell bent on safeguarding the dreadfully outdated Second Amendment to the US Constitution, we, as a society, are seemingly settled and resigned to our fate. Beyond the 400 or so mass-shootings and over 2000 deaths and injuries just in 2015, the guns are still blazing and there’s no stopping the lunacy. Proponents of the dastardly arms trade say that guns only kill innocent people when ...

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Series 3 The Little Princess Part 1 Blushing with fear

Women are creatures of the spring. Their hearts do not beat, they flutter. Their dispositions are sweet like honey and their eyes deep as oceans, their smiles light up their surrounding and their voices are like symphonies. They light up candles, make wishes, find shapes in the clouds, make sand castles and dream their days away. These are the fortunate ones though. When real life unleashes its raw cruelty, the spring turns to autumn. Hearts get torn apart, dispositions are rendered naked and the eyes… oh the eyes are the worst…They lose their sparkle; the oceans dry and leave giant ...

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Five anti-Pakistan Arnab Goswami moments that prove he needs to visit Pakistan first!

There is no doubt that he is flamboyant and aggressive to a fault. That is indeed what draws the viewers in. It’s not his fault. It is how the world of television news operates. He is merely the personification of ‘the good, the bad, and the ugly’ of news channels or perhaps the manifestation of television news at its best. For what else is news media about if not an indulgence in hyperbole, an engagement with trifle, and the desire to project whatever that is being shown as meaningful. Many have fallen victim to the Arnab Goswami attack; a barrage of verbosity. When ...

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Why did PTI so strongly oppose the Protection of Women Against Violence Bill?

The Punjab Assembly unanimously approved the Protection of Women Against Violence Bill, calling for an end to all criminalities against women, such as, domestic violence, acid attack, rape, psychological and economic abuse, stalking, and cyber-crimes. The 31 clauses of the new bill provide an efficient system for complaint registration and penalties for offenders. According to the clauses, a toll-free helpline (UAN number) will be launched to receive direct complaints. It also calls for the creation of protection centres and shelters homes, where conflicts and misunderstandings can be settled and help partners reach reconciliation. Under the law, those convicted of life-threatening crimes against women will ...

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Why was Danish Kaneria banned for life but Mohammad Amir restored?

When it comes to cricket, Pakistan has something or the other for everyone. Cricket is food for soul for a majority of Pakistanis, so it is understandable when the populace reacts to unjust happenings to cricketers who have held important places in not just the Pakistan cricket team but also in the hearts of thousands of Pakistani cricket fans. On a similar note is the story of Danish Kaneria. The right-arm leg-spinner ranked fourth in most number of wickets taken in international matches following the likes of Wasim Akram, Waqar Younis and Imran Khan, is currently living under the ban ...

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Is Uber in Pakistan risky or convenient?

Usually, rickshaws, as well as the older black and yellow taxis are available at every other street corner in Pakistan, and are effective in getting consumers from point A to point B, though the quality of service is far from ideal. The challenge in riding a rickshaw, especially for taller individuals, is reaching the destination with as few bruises and head injuries as possible, considering how adventurously the drivers of these open vehicles drive. Taxis, on the other hand, are a test for anyone with a fondness for personal hygiene. Sometimes the seats of these vehicles, which lack in air-conditioning, carry ...

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Dear Pakistani mom, why must I fear not getting a proposal?

Dear Pakistani mom, I am your beloved daughter, slightly spoiled but mostly a responsible, caring individual who would go to great lengths just to see a smile on your face. One who would run to the medicine store to grab some medicines should my ailing grandmother’s health so require. Please remember ‘you’ raised me so. You raised me to be a thoughtful, caring, independent and confident individual. You taught me not to follow the guidelines of learned female helplessness by waiting for the sympathy of my three brothers to get medicine in case I suffered a bout of respiratory infection. You raised me to believe women ...

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Today, India is not what it was before he won the elections

Is India paying the price for electing Narendra Modi as its prime minister? I ask this question regularly because since Modi assumed office in Delhi, the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) has been hurtling the country from one controversy to another. An atmosphere of fear has been created where any opposition to majoritarian politics is termed anti-national and the questioning of the government’s divisive agenda invites counter protests and blame for vitiating the atmosphere of the country. The state, therefore, has created enemies out of its own citizens by labelling them liberals, seculars, freethinkers and religious minority. The current controversy involving New Delhi based Jawaharlal Nehru ...

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