Shakir Lakhani

Shakir Lakhani

Engineer, former visiting lecturer at NED Engineering College, industrialist, associated with petroleum/chemical industries for many years. Loves writing, and (in the opinion of most of those who know him), mentally unbalanced. He tweets @shakirlakhani (twitter.com/shakirlakhani)

Why Kalabagh Dam is not the answer to our water woes

A few days back, my views on the futility of Kalabagh Dam published in a national daily evoked a very strong and hostile reaction from many people. I had posed a simple and pertinent question: “If, as is evident, Pakistan will have very little water in future, what will we fill Kalabagh Dam with?” Some people said Pakistan will have enough water forever, while others called me an enemy agent. Before delving deeper into why the dam should not be constructed, I would like to share my own experience of water consumption. Up until 10 years back, I had no idea how much ...

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Imran Khan is right, Pakistan should have more than four provinces

Whenever I make any comments about Pakistan having more provinces and smaller units, the reaction is always the same, “You want to divide the country? Are you a RAW agent or what?”  So when Imran Khan promised the creation of a South Punjab, it was a pleasant surprise to hear him say something intelligent for once. Imran made this promise recently as he welcomed turncoats from South Punjab into his party; defectors who enjoyed the perks and privileges of being MNAs for the past five years while saying nothing about creating a new province, until now. While supporting the demand by the Janoobi ...

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When giving your child quality education only costed Rs10

During the 1950s, I was studying in a missionary school (St Patrick’s). Many people in position of power have studied from the same school, such as a president, a prime minister, many army officers, government ministers and the famous Indian politician LK Advani. I still remember how the school fee at that time was only Rs10. But one day, in 1956 or thereabouts, the fee structure was changed. For some boys, the fee remained at Rs10, for some (like my brother and I) it was raised to Rs25, while the rest had to pay Rs37. Even though the school was ...

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Rules and laws apply to all but Imran Khan, PTI members and K-P police

There are times when I almost feel sorry for Imran Khan. Every time he makes a statement blaming Nawaz Sharif or some other opposition leader, something similar ends up happening to make him eat humble pie. For instance, when he proclaimed that he didn’t believe in dynasty politics like the Sharifs and the Bhuttos, but then gave a party ticket to the son of the disqualified Jehangir Tareen, despite there being hundreds of other honest workers in his party who deserved it more. Or when he defended Rao Anwar upon his sacking by Nawaz, but then had to eat his words after ...

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Did we catch the right man in Zainab’s murder?

After weeks of hoping, praying and demanding justice, we have finally been presented with a man being deemed the main culprit in the Zainab rape case. However, in light of all the information that was revealed to us earlier, along with the hurried nature of this capture, I remain unconvinced that Imran Ali Arshad is the man who not only raped and killed Zainab, but also seven other little girls since 2015. What is certain is that if the Supreme Court (SC) had not ordered the police to find the killer within 72 hours, the police would never have acted ...

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PML-N’s claim of ending load-shedding is as true as Nawaz Sharif being “sadiq” and “ameen”

It all started with the inauguration of the 660 megawatt, coal-fired power plant in Port Qasim, by Prime Minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi. He startled everyone by claiming that this is the most environment-friendly power plant of the country. Being an engineer, he should have known that nothing can be worse for the environment than producing electricity by burning coal. This is the reason why most coal-fired power plants are being shut down all over the world. The prime minister also knows, but failed to mention, that such coal-fired plants in Port Qasim, and other areas near Karachi, will result in the city being ...

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Like Ayub Khan and Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto, Nawaz Sharif can’t see the writing on the wall

I have never considered Nawaz Sharif as an intelligent man. Considering the events that have taken place this year alone, he should have learnt the lesson that he cannot continue looting the nation anymore. In fact, he should just spend the rest of his days in the holy land (Saudi Arabia) or he could go to London and guide his party members from there, like Altaf Hussain. Furthermore, with the humiliation he has suffered after being disqualified as the prime minister of Pakistan and from contesting future elections, he should have at least had the grace and dignity to admit his defeat. But like General ...

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How to get rich while saving billions in taxes in Pakistan

I’ve read a lot on how to get rich in a short span of time if you are living in a developing country like Pakistan. But all the writers of such articles have missed the easiest method of all – collude with the customs to cheat the government. One way of doing this is what an enterprising importer did recently. In this case alone, the company must have cheated the government of at least Rs100 million by importing 80,000 cell phones (which were recovered from the bungalow) without any payment of duty and taxes. In another raid, the authorities seized a container (belonging to the same ...

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Fudging the population: The missing 90 million Indian Muslims

There is one thing about Indian Muslims that just can’t be denied – most of them are poor. They don’t earn enough to be able to go on vacations to other countries. Most of them wish to go for Hajj to Saudi Arabia, and this they are able to do only when they are very old; having struggled to save over many years for the journey. Of course, there are rich and literate Indian Muslims whom one occasionally meets (mostly in the UAE and Saudi Arabia), and when you talk to them, they are adamant that the population of Indian Muslims is ...

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With over 13 stabbings in one month, Karachi needs the Rangers, not the (incompetent) police

I have yet to meet a Karachiite who holds a high opinion of our police force. Our police officers are notorious for being highly corrupt and incompetent, which is not surprising, given the level of corruption and bribery prevalent in the system itself. Therefore, I was not surprised when during a conversation about the recent stabbing attacks, my driver mentioned that the attacker is probably a policeman, which is why he has not been found so far. He was of the opinion that, “Even if he’s caught, they will not proceed against him, because he is one of them.” While this may not necessarily be true, ...

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