Stories published in July, 2010

Victory over the Aussies, despite ourselves

Let’s be clear about this: we did almost everything in our power to throw that game away. Pakistan, over the last year in a particular, but throughout its cricketing history, has made a habit of contriving to lose from the most dominant of positions. That we got away with it on Saturday morning doesn’t mean that our batting has emerged from the (mostly self-inflicted) psychological trauma of the last few years of Test cricket. Like a demented 3-year-old with a pair of gardening shears, Pakistani batsmen seem to take some sort of perverse pleasure in getting to the very brink ...

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A three point formula to online success

In a country like Pakistan, where job uncertainty at its peak and market giants are still losing revenue having your own small business is like a blessing. Research has show that in times of economic uncertainty, small and medium businesses tens to survive while big businesses feel the heat and begin to decline. Moreover, nothing beats being your own boss. However, no matter whether a business is a small shop or a giant corporation – marketing is mandatory. Large organizations have big budgets to invest in marketing while small businesses can’t find the money to spend on strategy. But don’t worry, the solution for small budget is online ...

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Have you met the sun today?

There is no eye that doesn’t find serenity in floating clouds, tranquility in shimmering water, and brilliance in the moon light. Nature is the only thing that will fill your heart with contentment and your spirit with peace. Stop and take a look around. There is nothing like walking bare foot on the moist grass, soaking oneself in the rain or sitting under the shade of a neem tree. When was the last time you did any of these things? Sometimes I like to close my eyes and listen to the melody of nature. As the song of the sparrow mixes with the breeze I can ...

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Misplaced appreciation

Getting flak for dissing a home-grown Pakistani indie filmmaker’s latest short film was not entirely unexpected. Neither was, for that matter, the argument arguing in favour of the film, which essentially said to “give credit to the filmmakers for trying”. A consolation prize. Something akin to: “You might be butt-ugly but thanks for being the only fish in our fish tank.” At times I feel some of us take the whole notion of “protecting the local blossoming industry” a bit too far. Sure the local indie filmmakers, having spent their hard earned money on their labour of love, need to ...

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Who sabotaged Krishna?

This is not the first time that Indian extremists have sabotaged crucial peace talks with Pakistan. On February 19 2007, one day before Pakistan Foreign Minister Khurshid Kasuri landed in New Delhi for peace talks, a bomb exploded aboard the Samjhota Express, or the friendship train launched as a peace gesture. Fifty nine Pakistani visitors heading to India were burned alive. A cynical Indian government blamed the ISI and Kashmiri freedom fighters for the incident but later it turned out that serving Indian military Intelligence officers and members of a Hindu terror group were involved. The Indian officers were arrested ...

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Driving on the moon

For the past few months, driving in Karachi’s Defence Housing Authority (DHA) has turned into a tough and expensive task. Tough, because of the ‘brilliant’ sewerage lines laid right in the centre of the roads. Cities are planned with the future needs in mind and these people couldn’t even plan an area! These geniuses thought of a new way and style for sewerage lines: Right in the middle of the road and lined with gaps for the water to fall through. As if the water will collect at every gap between these lines. There are countries in the world where ...

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The saddest creature

With not even a single street light on the isolated road and accompanied by highly paranoid parents, my 15-minute ride back from work is one filled with fearful glances in the rear-view mirror, always on the look out for ‘muggers’. So just a few weeks back when the car came to a shrieking halt, followed by gasps, I knew that was it. That dark huddle standing in the middle of the road was going to strip us of all valuables and leave my family in post-traumatic shock. But, to our surprise, our midnight assailant was not armed, had a look of despair, and ...

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An Indian look at Pakistani cricket

Let me try to do something most Pakistanis would think twice about – make sense of Pakistan cricket, as it stands today. You are justified to ask me as to why someone like me, sitting here in Mumbai is trying his level best to try and see through the muck that people at the PCB’s HQ in Lahore aren’t quite able to. There is a reason. And as a promise, I shall try and keep my nationality aside throughout this post, just to try and put things in much-needed perspective. The mood in India towards Pakistan cricket has somewhat changed, and ...

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A rant against ‘so-called beauticians’

If a genie appeared before a woman and offered to grant her three wishes, she would probably choose to become pretty, prettier, and prettiest. With ever-growing exposure to more beautiful women through media, fairness creams advertisements declaring beauty to be ‘power’ and portrayals that only beautiful, fair-complexioned and skinny women are chosen by eligible bachelors, women are becoming obsessed with beautifying themselves and changing their look overnight. Women face pressure from their peers, husbands or by their husbands ‘to-be’ to look like the woman of their dreams. Unfortunately as there are no real-life genies available, the only option left for most women is to go to ...

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Unite from Parachinar to Karachi

Years ago, when in my hometown Parachinar and in other tribal areas, malicious actions were initiated by inhuman terrorists against innocent and peace-loving people, I had written an article titled “Let think for Pakistan”. At the time, I hadn’t imagined that this article would be momentous and significant even years later. But unfortunately, today Pakistan is confronted with more miserable conditions than before. We are in a quagmire of socio-economic and security problems set against a backdrop of ethnic and religious intolerance. From Parachinar to Karachi, the lives of human beings are at great risk. The terrorists have pushed Pakistan into a ...

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