Stories published in October, 2012

Please, don’t abandon me now

Against all odds, I came this far, I shed my blood, I fought my war, My story is written in each and every scar. But it looks like now, Whatever I’ve been through Whatever I’ve faced has taken its toll, And here I lie with an embattled soul. In this moment of pain, I look towards you, And I realise that you, You turn away your eyes. And just as you walk away, I muster my strength, Just enough to say, “Don’t turn your back, Don’t give up on me,” Agony has seeped deep within me. Distress has engulfed every inch of me. My wounds are deep, My breath is shallow, But don’t tell me, That my chances are low. Do you forget the odds I defied? Despite everything I ...

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SPLGO 2012: If anything goes wrong, PPP is to blame

The new Local Government Ordinance, since its promulgation and passage in the Sindh Assembly, has become a source of nuisance. On one hand, nationalist and other parties strongly oppose it, terming it a conspiracy towards the division of Sindh, while on the other hand, PPP ministers and members exert their energies to a great extent to prove it beneficial for Sindh — with whatever knowledge they possess about the new system. Though people throughout Sindh are agitated against the controversial new system and violent protests claimed a life in Shaheed Benazirabad, a bigger tragedy took place in Khairpur, where six ...

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Child rights not important enough for you Mr Prime Minister?

Last year in September, I was told that the Ministry of Human Rights would table a draft of the first ever commission on children’s rights in parliament within six months. Adviser to the prime minister on human rights, Mustafa Nawaz Khokhar had claimed that the ministry was working on a draft round the clock to get it finalised, that the draft was almost ready and that they would present it in the National Assembly to make it part of legislation without further delays. However, last week, I attended a seminar where I was astonished to see Prime Minister Raja Pervez Ashraf ...

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Azhar Ahmed: Punished for irresponsible freedom of speech?

His crime was posting comments that were tasteless, rude, offensive, and highly insensitive to those who had lost their loved ones, but were they worthy of a criminal trial? According to various prominent UK news organisations, including The Independent, the following comments posted by a 20-year-old British man, Azhar Ahmed, on the social networking website Facebook, landed him in hot water: “People gassin [venting off] about the deaths of soldiers! What about the innocent familys who have been brutally killed.. The women who have been raped.. The children who have been sliced up..! Your enemy’s were the Taliban not innocent harmless ...

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Angelina hops on to the philanthropy bandwagon, again!

So when exactly did the concept of philanthropy change and how come no one told me? I look at the good guys of the past and compare them to the so-called humanity lovers of today and I feel like an imbecile who hibernated her way to modernity. The definition of the word philanthropy has apparently been transformed, much to my surprise. As a baby, I was told by my mother that Buddha was the epitome of sacrifice because he gave up his Kingdom to find what people needed the most, Nirvana. Another figure, Mother Teresa, couldn’t keep more for herself ...

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Yes, Malala is more important than the average citizen

A death of a leader is always grieved more than the death of a worker. Likewise, the life of a national hero is celebrated more than the life of an ordinary citizen. This is a universal law – a trait common to all cultures. The battle of Badr in 624AD, the most decisive battle in Islamic history, was fought and won by 314 Muslim fighters including Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) himself. The Holy Prophet (pbuh) went on creating an Islamic empire, and became the most eternal personality of Islam. Yet we don’t know much, or anything, about the remaining 313 fighters, apart from the ...

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Is cricket the beginning and end for Pakistan?

Our country, Pakistan is blessed with some amazing talent. We have had some true legends in almost every field, and sports is no exception. Who can forget the great Jehangir Khan and Janshair Khan? The leadership of Imran khan, that legendary duo of Wasim Akram and Waqar Younis? That sixer from Javed Miandad and the master of the penalty corners, Sohail Abbas. Unfortunately however, sports here in Pakistan have been dominated by one and one only, cricket. I’ll try to prove this statement with some examples and facts that support my argument about how this sport is getting the lion’s share ...

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Why I’d rather be a man and not a woman

There is no tragedy greater than pushing yourself into a box someone else made for you. I think as far as I can think back, I never appreciated my gender because of the “female” box, and I always felt that being a guy was better. It’s a tiny little dark place, that box … I hated it. My nani’s (maternal grandmother) house was a magical land where you could run at supersonic speed, climb the highest of trees, and dream up the most amazing things. All of those things are things girls aren’t supposed to do (yes, even the dreaming amazing ...

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Let overseas Pakistanis vote!

In a grand gesture, the Election Commission of Pakistan granted 3.7 million foreign-dwelling Pakistani nationals permission to vote in elections. Huh? I had never realised that this was a privilege, rather than a right. As with all shows of benevolence, however, there is always a catch. Excluded from this group are just as many Pakistanis who hold dual nationalities; in order to be eligible to stand for office or to be allowed to vote in Pakistan, they must surrender their non-Pakistani citizenship. Being in this particular boat, I’m inclined to ask: what, exactly, gives you the right to take away my rights? By definition, a ...

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A protest through the eyes of a journalist

Nothing is more dangerous than a mob that gets carried away by religious fervour and frustration. It can be equally threatening to report about such a mob as a journalist. On September 21, the day the whole country shut down to condemn an anti-Islam video, there were mad men out on the streets bent upon destroying public and private property. They seemed to be having fun — raising slogans and cursing the US. For a reporter, it is easy to be swept away by the sheer energy displayed by boys wielding sticks and bricks. Karachi offers a lot of action in ...

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