Stories published in April, 2013

Barcelona versus Paris Saint Germain: Are we in for something special?

As the season comes to a close and league winners become apparent, Europe’s illustrious competition, the Champions League still hangs in the balance. After the first leg of the quarter finals, some have already progressed to the next round, but little has happened that was of the unexpected. The first leg clash between Barcelona and Paris Saint Germain (PSG) resulted in a 2-2 draw in Paris. PSG was lucky to grab an equaliser at a crucial point in time. However, the French still have to travel to the port city for the return leg and have gotten themselves trapped in an uphill task. At this ...

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Is your child’s backpack too heavy?

Recently, my eldest son joined school at the nursery level for formal education. I was surprised at the list of things to collect: books, copies, pencils, sharpeners, lunch box, water bottle, bag, uniform, shoes, socks and other uniform-related articles for him. For me, it was a long process to find the required paraphernalia to enable him for this first phase in his life. I noticed two issues while going through the admission process and collection of required items for my child. I have to pick and drop my son from school daily. In doing so, I found that the weight of ...

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Chashme Baddoor: Another sad attempt at a remake

It seems Bollywood is on a remake spree. A weekend after the release of the Himmatwala remake we are offered Chashme Baddoor, a remake of a 1981 comedy of the same name. While with remakes, one inevitably ends up comparing it to the original, I am going to try and be fair to the 2013 movie, and not pitch the two versions against each other. Chashme Baddoor  is an out-and-out David Dhawan comedy – full of cheesy shayari (poetry), slapstick (and sometimes over the top comedy) and exaggerated situations. This is not a movie for those expecting any form of sense in ...

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Pakistani batting lineup: Untamed and untrained

Following the South Africa debacle, Pakistani batting has once again come under microscopic scrutiny. This, however, is not the first time the national team’s batting has faltered in the face of quality bowling and sporting pitches. The experts are out to dissect the team’s batting performance; some are lamenting the absence of a specialist batting coach, some are unhappy with the team selection while others have pointed out the inadequacy of the country’s domestic cricket structure in producing world-class batsmen. To be fair, I believe that our batting failures are a combination of all of the above, and more. Instead of going for ...

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Pakistan needs a leader like Margaret Thatcher

“If you just set out to be liked, you will be prepared to compromise on anything at any time, and would achieve nothing.” Margaret Thatcher. Margaret Hilda Thatcher embodied these words. To some she was an icon of assertiveness and conviction, to others, she was just a bossy old lady. Perhaps no other prime minister in the history of Britain has been loved and reviled at the same time as she has been, but that is who Margaret Thatcher was. To judge her on her political and economic beliefs solely would be to overlook her love for her country and her superhuman steadfastness ...

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None of these people represent me! Why can’t I vote ‘none of the above’?

You know what, Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP), I wanted to exercise the ‘none of the above’ option in my vote but you backed out by deciding against introducing it. I don’t know, nor do I care if I was alone in rejoicing the commission’s decision to put in that option in the ballot paper, because for the first time, I thought I would go and vote my heart out. I would rather go to the ballot and tell the world that none of these people represent me. This is so much better than just sitting back and not casting one’s vote ...

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Do you know about the people of Tirah valley?

Have you ever heard of the valley of Tirah? This is not some valley in distant country in a faraway continent; it is located in the Federally Administered Tribal Areas (FATA), in the northwest of Pakistan. Recently, Tirah has fallen into the hands of the Taliban after a fierce couple of months of fighting. The main battle for control of Tirah was between the Ansarul Islam (AI) and the Lashkar-e-Islam (LI) backed by Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP). The news of this fight has been covered extensively by some of the leading daily newspapers of Pakistan, but unfortunately, the mainstream news channels of Pakistan have completely ...

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Life in Hong Kong: Run or get out of the way!

It’s got a buzz, no doubt; In Hong Kong, there’s always activity everywhere. Hong Kong is basically a confusion of trends between China and the Western world. Life here is extremely fast paced and people are often rude because they are hurrying off to another direction, are on the phone and hopping off of one train to jump on another bus to take another ferry where they will walk 20 minutes to reach their homes. I’m not kidding. My own husband takes two trains and a bus to reach home every day. It’s just what life is like here. People are increasing in numbers ...

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I am a common man and I am contesting in the elections

My name is Mohammad Jibran Nasir. I am 26-years-old and a lawyer by profession having completed my LLB followed by an LLM. I finished my studies in 2010 and upon my return to Pakistan after my two year stay in the UK, I started my first philanthropic venture, “Pehla Qadam“ (first step). Pehla Qadam was a flood relief camp I set up in Karachi with another friend to generate Rs100, 000 in a month so that the same may be donated towards relief efforts. At the end of that month we had collected funds and donations in kind worth over ...

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Teaching your child how to drive? Bad idea!

A few years ago, I crashed our car onto a footpath as I was learning how to drive by the beautiful, empty stretch along the sea. My father was in the passenger seat and I maintain, to this day, that he should be held more responsible than me. Is this tossing of blame typical, youthful insolence on my part? Perhaps, to an extent, but hear me out.  Parents can certainly do a lot of things, wear many hats, but there are some tasks you just need to call in the professionals for. In my case, it was learning how to drive. Yes, I ...

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