Stories published in August, 2010

Do Muslims deserve what they get?

I visited Australia for a few months earlier this year to spend time with family and friends. During my stay in Melbourne, I had the opportunity to visit Vic Roads, the state authority for issuing drivers licenses and collecting fines as a friend of mine had applied for his license. While we were waiting for our turn we went to get some refreshments at the bar. The cashier at the counter got around to talking to us and asked what we were doing at Vic Roads. When he heard our answer he said “Mate, there are two Muslim men among the officials here. If ...

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Crisis fatigue

“We request the people to stand united in these trying times.” I hear this lingo on news channels during problems, crises, disasters and catastrophes. But now it seems people don’t want to stand united. They don’t want to have anything to do with the problems engulfing the country. My mother practically groans, “Please switch off the news channels. It’s so depressing.” It’s called crisis fatigue. We are sick of our country’s miseries. We are tired of hearing more bad news – even about the national team’s losses. So instead of doing something about it, we choose repression and escapism. We run away, find ...

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A reason to hope

I was stuck. I had managed to come within two feet of the huts I had been aiming for but now I was on a grassy edge of the mountain with four large goats and the huts were on a level above with no way to get there. Then the lady appeared. Like an angel with wrinkled skin and orange hair, she was startled to see me with my army green shoulder bag and sneakers, a dupatta perched on my head. “Where’d you drop from?” she asked in surprise and then called over her family. It took two women and ...

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The dustbin that never was

Whenever I drive through the streets of Islamabad, I see wrappers of food items littered around the streets. It seems that no one oversee’s garbage disposal in the city. Are we to blame the sweepers for throwing shopping bags on roads? One summer evening, while going for a casual stroll, I felt thirsty so I bought juice from the Karyana Store. Alas, within a few strides, all I was left with was a cubical-rectangular empty carton. My first thought was to throw it on that lush-green walking track, but something clicked. I decided to look  for a dustbin to dispose of ...

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Stamford Bridge, Green Street and Shor Macha!

With Chelsea running away to a thumping victory on the opening day of the season, Pakistani’s doing what they do best, that is making some noise, and one of my favourite bands coming out with a very cool video, my annual leave to London got off to a perfect start. I love my work as a broadcast journalist at express 24/7, but after 21 months of work in the newsroom it was a time for a break, so I packed my bags and headed off to London. After 2 days of relative calm, my annual leave came to life ...

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Flood crisis: Indian aid equals evil aid?

Seriously guys, are we really arguing over whether India giving us $5 million in aid was enough aid? Or that we should give it back because they are ‘the enemy’? I have been following this growing debate on some stories circulating on The Express Tribune website and it is making me sick (I apologise in advance to all my haters if I write in too straightforward a manner, but that is what the freedom of blogging entails for me). I know hating is not allowed on this site, but really can I hate just a little on our Pakistani folk ...

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Spreading the colour green

Flowers are the beautiful hieroglyphics of nature with which she indicates how much she loves us. – Goethe Imagine walking into your office with your head full of plans for the day and catching sight of a little present that waits for you on your desk. Wouldn’t it just make your day? It could bring a smile to your face whether it was just a randomly picked flower or a little note saying “Have a good day!” Life is all about sharing love and spreading smiles where ever you go. I like to take flowers on my way for my friends. During the time ...

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No wrong time for the right person

I do not understand why some people wait for the ‘ideal conditions’ to initiate their endeavors. People think that they cannot succeed in a society where achieving anything looks impossible. All I can say is that this is simply the approach of losers. I have not come across many successful people who have prospered in ideal conditions, for great successes have always occurred in adversity. I heard once that winners translate dreams into reality and losers translate reality into dreams. The best idea will not work until you work with it. When I heard these sentences for the first time, I ...

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The Pakistan Jinnah envisioned

I have been reading the Dawn newspaper  since I was a child and it helped form a clear, balanced image of the founder of Pakistan in my mind. This year as I read an article by Jinnah expert Shariful Mujahid  article, entitled return to Jinnah’s Pakistan’ I saw with dismay and pessimism , a picture so grey and small. Gone were the beautiful bright colours of the people of Sindh, Baluchistan , Frontier and Punjab. Gone were the dreams and promises. The style in which he has addressed the readers shows how hopeless and petty our issues have become. How ...

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In search of a nation

Sixty-three years ago today, we became independent. Sixty-three years ago today, we became a country. But what we never became, and still are not, is a nation. We think of ourselves as Sindhis, Balochis, Punjabis, Seraikis, Pakhtuns and Mohajirs. We are yet to become Pakistanis. What we were meant to be we are not. And what we are, we are not even sure of. But what one thing I am certain of is that had the Quaid been alive today, he would have died of horror at who we, as a country, have become. Ours is a picturesque and resourceful country ...

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