Stories about karachi

If you think NA-246 is about MQM versus PTI, you’re wrong

Who bags NA-246 and which party stands victorious tonight makes little difference. What matters is that today’s election will put an end to the environment and politics of fear prevalent in Karachi for years. Active campaigning by other candidates in Muttahida Qaumi Movement’s (MQM) stronghold, polling agents standing brave at polling stations that were once no-go areas for all political parties and candidates except MQM and fearless voters walking into polling booths with the intention to not vote for MQM, and then being able to walk out and go home, are all a breath of fresh air for Karachiites. This by-election ...

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Digital Youth Summit 2015: Helping Peshawar become more tech-savvy

Peshawar, the capital of Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa (K-P), is gearing up to host the region’s largest gathering of techies, entrepreneurs and designers – the Digital Youth Summit 2015 (DYS). First organised in 2014, it is a joint venture of Peshawar 2.0, World Bank and the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa IT Board. Popularly known for its hospitality, Peshawar is one of the oldest existing cities in Asia. This tells the story of its resilience, and its ability to survive and stand tall even in the most testing of times. However, this is an age where the most likely cities to survive and remain on the global map would ...

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Forget New York or Paris, take a trip to Thatta, Bhambore and Makli

I am glad that the first post I will be writing here will be about one of my trips within Pakistan. Those who aspire to travel spend a lot of time planning trips to foreign lands. But what they don’t know is the fact that the same time can be used to explore the unique worlds that exist within Pakistan. I got such a chance this March, when I joined a small group of travel and photography enthusiasts led by Jibran from Tangerine Media and Sanam from Funverks on a day trip to the out skirts of Thatta. This entailed a ...

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Swim in a warm pool of oozing chocolate with this decadent lava cake

While doing my undergrad in Lahore – one of Pakistan’s most beautiful cities which is rich in cultural heritage and offers the best food you can find in the country – I remember getting into a rickshaw at night and taking a bumpy 30-minute drive to the famous Coffee Tea and Company (CTC) for their distinguished rich, moist and chocolatey lava cake with a scoop of vanilla bean ice cream. We always ended up ordering order two or three and would share it amongst the eight or nine of us. Although each person would only manage to get just six bites between the girly chatter and giggles, ...

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Letting Ali die

Ali* was on bed 16. He was 10-months-old and critically sick. According to his mother, Ali had been quite normal when he was taken to a neighbour’s house by the neighbour’s daughter a few days ago. This was not the first time the neighbour’s child had carried Ali to her house to play with him. However, what was different this time around was that the child brought Ali back comparatively earlier after taking him, presumably because he was fussy. That, in itself, could have been a red flag for the parents to suspect something. The parents, unfortunately, let hours pass ...

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A giant cross will not help Pakistan’s Christian community

Ever since the last two devastating church attacks in Peshawar and Lahore, the pressing issue of minority rights has received increased attention. The government’s futile attempts to provide a safe haven for the state’s minorities have been all in vain. In the wake of this pursuit, yet another effort is being carried out to assure that the minorities are considered equal inhabitants of this country. A 140-feet tall cross is being constructed in one of Karachi’s oldest Christian cemeteries, which is also claimed to be the largest across Asia. Financed by the Henry Gill family, the construction work is supervised by Parvez Henry Gill himself. The cross ...

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Zimbabwe’s visit to Pakistan: Dawn of a new era?

“Daarhion ne phir marwa diya hai” (The beards [bearded men] have gotten us into trouble again) These were the first words I heard on a dreary school morning as news of the attackon the touring Sri Lankan team made the headlines. A desolate shroud enveloped Zinda Dilan-e-Lahore as news broke that the bus carrying the touring Sri Lankan cricket team was fired at by a coterie of Kalashnikov toting ‘na maloom afraad’ in broad daylight. The nearby elite would hear of such incidents up in the agencies next to the Afghan border and seldom, the Taliban types would make it as far as Peshawar, but a gun massacre somewhere as central ...

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Once you’re Pakistani, there is no going back to India

The non-issuance of visas to India continues to irk thousands of Pakistani Americans as the former remains hell bent to grind an axe with Pakistanis, regardless of borders or their new nationalities. At the moment, there are an estimated 500,000 Pakistani Americans in the US and the rate of their continually burgeoning numbers makes them the second fastest growing group of Asian immigrants in the US. According to the Pew Research Centre, the entire population of Asian Americans, which includes Pakistanis, is among those in the highest income bracket as well as the best educated in the country. However, despite all the good check marks ...

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“My son was not affiliated with any political party”

“The biggest struggles we face exist within ourselves.”  The line caught his attention. In front of him, a young student sat on a seat, sifting through the pages of a worn-out paperback. He stood adjacent to the boy’s seat, clutching on to his satchel with one hand, while the other firmly wrapped around the holding rail. It was around evening time and he was commuting back home from work. This travel was nothing new for him. For 25 years he had worked as a bookkeeper and every day, he would wake up at 5:30am without the aid of a clock to ...

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My experience as a blogger for The Express Tribune’s blogs page

Today is The Express Tribune’s five year anniversary and while it is a jubilant moment for the whole publication, it is one that is also tinged with reflection.  The publication started as the first Pakistani newspaper which, partnered with the International Herald Tribune initially and the International New York Times now, offered a mix of domestic and global news to the masses. It provided a different perspective by allowing blogs from ordinary individuals on its website, opening up a whole different field of “online” or “citizen” journalism. Additionally, Express Tribune has greatly utilised social media like Twitter and Facebook to spread the news and this ...

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