Stories published in April, 2013

Too lazy to work, too lazy to move: Make the wife work

Gone are the days when marriage meant that the husband was responsible for earning bread while the woman’s role is that of staying at home, running the household and taking care of her husband and children. With evolving times, the concept of matrimony has changed in developed, as well as developing countries. Now, a husband and wife are considered two wheels of a car in all aspects. Women earn as much as their husbands and take part in contributing to the household expenses. While this approach has been acknowledged worldwide, people belonging to the subcontinent, and mostly Pakistan, have contradictory opinions. For instance, a ...

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Beware of email and SMS spoofing: You could be impersonated!

I recently came across an article about an ‘evil mobile software’ on sale in Pakistan that is being used to send out fake SMS messages using other people’s mobile phone number. This act is commonly called ‘SMS spoofing’ and has both legitimate uses (setting the company name, your own mobile number or a product name from which the message is being sent) and illegitimate uses (such as impersonating another person, company or product). The article states that the software is being advertised and sold openly in the market without the notice of any law enforcement authorities. It is being used to send out spam and phishing messages. To ...

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Article 62 and 63: You don’t have to be too holy to be an MPA

They say that the world is all about numbers, and for Pakistan today, the numbers 62 and 63 are the talk of town. Citizens of the country are watching election candidates being questioned over their eligibility on the basis of the much talked about Article 62 and 63 of the Constitution. Candidates are being scrutinised regarding their utility bill payments, bank loan payments, their ideological views on Pakistan and most interestingly, their Islamic knowledge. Regarding Islam, returning officers performing the scrutiny of nomination papers have a set of interesting questions which they pose to the candidates. Some are being asked to recite ...

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Quddusi Sahab Ki Bewah will have you in fits of laughter

They say good laughter is a form of internal jogging, so when was the last time you laughed out really hard? You know, the uncontrollable, hearty kind of laughter that leaves you appreciating the object that triggered it? Yup, that kind. I laugh out loud every time I watch ARY Digital’s drama serial Quddusi Sahab Ki Bewah. Though many people I know are quite skeptical about the authentic humour it contains, I admire it for the realistic portrayal of events that the socio-economically lower class witness in their everyday lives. Quddusi Sahab Ki Bewah is a comedy drama serial which aired for the first time ...

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Women are just as capable as men! They don’t need reserved seats

It is ironic how often not just women but even men have simultaneously debated over the equal rights of women, yet they are deprived of the knowledge of what equality actually means and what diversified leaders (men and women) have stood for and against. Damning evidence of gender discrimination – however camouflaged it might be – exists in our very own electoral system through reserved seats for women. “I hate to hear you talk about all women as if they were fine ladies instead of rational creatures. None of us want to be in calm waters all our lives.”- Jane Austen. There ...

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Is gun control fair when guns are a part of your culture?

Sitting around in the ICU recently, I struck up a conversation with one of the nurses. We started talking about his new dog that he’s trained not to react to loud abrupt sounds, such as gunfire. He does this at range he shoots at. I expressed interest in what kind of gun he uses being a bit of a self-touted gun enthusiast myself. He then went on to list about 15 guns that he owns, right from an antique short-barrelled musket to an AR-9 rifle, for which he recently bought an ACOG high precision scope! Renewed debate regarding the need for stricter ...

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Are your maid and driver ‘dirty’ because they work for you?

A woman snatched a fork from the hands of another woman just as she was about to eat at a dinner recently. The other woman did not flinch nor retaliate. In fact, she went on to accept an entire set of different dinnerware from the plate to the glass. That’s an extraordinarily polite guest, I noted. Except this woman was not a guest. The woman was a domestic servant. No one paused to notice what happened, no one found it strange. There is a difference we have with the people that work for us. We do not eat in the same plates as them and cannot ...

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Demystifying the myth of full HD smart phone screens

2013 is witnessing a rapid growth in smart phone technology with a number of exciting features added to the phones. Despite the amazing features in recent mobile phones that include, high speed quad core processors, large screen sizes, high-fidelity Graphic Processing Units (GPUs) and innovative designs, the mobile phones manufacturers are desperately trying to surpass each other. A number of marketing tactics are being used to get us all excited, and persuade us to upgrade our phones. Due to the tremendous advancements in hardware and software technology and the challenges posed by a very competitive market, the smart phone manufacturers are left only ...

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Religion is personal and no one has the right to question it

Being a Pakistani Muslim, I am a firm believer in the ideology of Pakistan and have respect for all those who sacrificed their lives for our future, by gaining independence from British India. But had the founder of Pakistan known what was to become of his country, he might have had second thoughts. In the recent past, the scrutiny of nomination papers was under way, according to Articles 62 and 63 of the Constitution, inserted into the Constitution by military ruler Ziaul Haq, that too, by blackmailing elected representatives of the time under the Eighth Amendment. The requirement to hold a graduate degree ...

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Badam Zari: The first Pakistani tribal woman to stand for elections

The much-vaunted democratic transition has taken place in Pakistan. Caretaker set-ups have settled in the centre and the provinces are to hold free and fair elections.  Similarly, candidates have also swung into motion, filing nomination papers, appearing before the Election Commission staff for pre-poll scrutiny and, most important of all, arranging funds for the election campaign. However, one event stands apart, amidst the din and uproar, of the initial phase of the election campaign: A female candidate has filed nomination papers to stand for NA-44 constituency, falling in Bajaur Agency. Badam Zari has made history by daring to move out of the confines of ...

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