Faryal Najeeb

A sub-editor on the business pages of The Express Tribune. She has a passion for commerce journalism.

A charitable nation we are

I had a very good experience recently which made me realise there is so much good in Pakistan which goes unreported. I was visiting the McDonald’s restaurant on Tariq Road in Karachi and on my way out, I came across a family with four children, the eldest probably around 10. I fell in step with them and the minute we left the restaurant, a crowd of beggars surrounded us. While I brushed them aside, the four children who each carried a Happy Meal box, readily handed them over to the beggars —who were also children. Since I was standing with them, ...

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Review: The ‘Game’ is not on

Although Game has an interesting cast, it fails dismally to get any points, when it comes to reviews. Actors Jimmy Shergill, Boman Irani, Abhishek Bachchan, Kangana Ranaut and Anupam Kher star in the mystery action movie. The Farhan Akhtar and Ritesh Shidwani release does not live up to the high expectations I had after watching the trailers. The good thing is that Game wastes no item with background score and meaningless shots. Multi-millionaire character Kabir Malhotra (Anupam Kher) invites four strangers from different parts of the world, each with a murky past to his private island, Samos. They are: Ramsay (Boman Irani) a politician running for presidential ...

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Raymond Davis and uncontrollable social media

I realised the impact of social media on Wednesday when the news of Raymond Davis’ release was announced on news channels. I am a journalist, but I wasn’t as quick to disseminate information as social network websites like Facebook and Twitter were. The ‘breaking news’ had barely hit the airwaves when my phone, email inbox and Facebook were flooded with messages. People were looking for confirmation of the news, personal opinions and, of course, were venting anger against the government. Less than an hour later, as more information was revealed, discussions and debates began to emerge. I took a keen interest and silently ...

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Dear govt, wake up and smell the inflation!

Just last week, tomatoes were being sold for Rs60 per kg, but this week they were priced at Rs80 for the same amount. When I asked why the sudden price rise of Rs20 in just one week, I got a short reply: “Baji, saardiyan shuru hogayi hai,” (Sister, winter has commenced.) Now, what do tomato prices have to do with the sudden drop in temperatures? The supply of tomatoes is going to continue just as always- there is no sowing strike, no harvesting strike, no farmer strike, no buyer strike, no transport strike – and there hasn’t been any news of devastation ...

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November 26, 2010

Cigarette promotions: Is free always better?

My brother, who is studying in Malaysia, recently went to a tobacco company-sponsored event where free cigarettes were distributed among all those in attendance. He didn’t tell us about it himself; his Facebook did. Upon questioning, he said it was a promotion whereby two free cigarettes were given out to each individual who showed his identity card and the event pass. Further probing revealed that the crowd mostly comprised young men and women between the ages of 18 and 30. It is human nature that when something is being offered free of charge, one feels the compulsion to have it. Of ...

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Desensitised in Karachi’s killing fields

Karachi is seeing red again as the city is gripped by target killings and “cannibalism”. Yes, I know the latter isn’t an appropriate word, but has anyone got a better way to describe what is happening in the city? The death toll of the three days’ ongoing target killings in Karachi has climbed to 55 on Tuesday with 15 killings in last 24 hours in various parts of the city. And that is not counting the very latest figures of the 12 victims who died in Sher shah. The police and Rangers claimed to have apprehended more than 80 persons allegedly ...

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When will our police act?

I had not completely recovered from the shock of losing six of my friends in the Airblue plane crash when I witnessed another gruesome death on Wednesday night, day two of the recent spate of violence in Karachi. I was returning home from work when the situation in Gulistan- e- Jauhar suddenly deteriorated. There was heavy firing between two spots in the area, Jauhar Morr and Jauhar Chowrangi. In a state of panic, most cars turned around on the same road creating a jam. In the midst of this, my eyes were drawn to a few bystanders looking down at something. With a ...

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What are we worth?

I knew six of the 152 passengers and crew on the ill-fated Air Blue Flight 202 personally. They were friends – not very close – but friends nonetheless. Two more among the passengers I didn’t know in person, but knew about. The initial news had shocked me to the core. Until then, I wasn’t aware my friends were on board and I watched the national tragedy like the rest of Pakistan on television. The messages of the deaths started to pour in late afternoon, when the news spread from family to relatives and then friends. Four of the crew members were ...

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All eyes on the octopus

The Fifa world cup has ended with a bang. As always, there was plenty of drama, tears, joy and action… along with a fair share of conspiracy theories and side stories. The most famous of course involves Paul – the octopus who had a 100 per cent prediction record this time. (It had an 86 per cent record in the Euro2008). While many are calling it a ‘psychic’ creature and are still astonished over its ‘powers’, others have called it a conspiracy of the bookies. There has been much talk that the mussels fed to the octopus had a certain ...

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Doing our bit

We recently asked our tenants to move out because they had made a mess of our property. We initially got complaints from the neighbours, who were so sick and tired of the tenants that they managed to contact us directly. Upon inspection it turned out that the people to whom we had rented out our flat had never cleaned it properly. This resulted in several pests making their home around the property. Also, they always seemed to throw the garbage out on the street right outside the apartment building and never thought of disposing it off in a more hygienic ...

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