Stories published in October, 2013

Meat distribution: How you can give back on Eid

“Let us not be satisfied with just giving money. Money is not enough, money can be got, but they need your hearts to love them. So, spread your love everywhere you go.” – Mother Teresa. This quote, illustrates very simply yet eloquently, the core principles upon which a social worker functions. Unlike most organisations, the objective of social organisations is not consideration, that is, receiving something in return for giving something. Instead, their work stems from the belief that the aim in life is not personal contentment and satisfaction; rather, it is about ensuring some level of happiness for those ...

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Uniforms in university turn adults into mere children

There isn’t nearly enough harm being done by making our students think alike; we need them to look alike as well – to iron out every last lump, wrinkle and kink of individuality in them, leaving a monochrome sheet with every thread being exactly like the other. Uniforms in schools and colleges are a vestige of a past that valued military-style automaticity as the only true form of discipline. Some people may think that it is a good idea to have every future lawyer, playwright, cardiologist and sculptor dress up in a uniform and march into the assembly ground like ...

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A father’s wish on Eidul Azha

Azhar stood at the bus stop, waiting for the bus to come. His eyes filled with tears and standing there in the heat of the scorching sun just made everything seem even more dismal. Before he could stop himself, a helpless sigh escaped him; then, straightening his shoulders, he took a deep breath and pretended to look eagerly towards the corner of the road from where the bus was to come. Yet, as much as he tried, his mind kept taking him back to the comfort of his boss’s air-conditioned office. He still couldn’t believe that his employer had asked ...

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Uniforms are pointless: Here are 10 reasons why!

This article is a response to the one posted earlier on The Express Tribune blogs which emphasised the importance of uniforms for university going students. As a university going student myself, not wearing a uniform in university is like a burden off my shoulders. This freedom represents the transition from being a young, troubled, carefree A Level student to becoming an actual grownup in university with the responsibility to dress in attire suitable for all situations. Here are 10 reasons I feel uniforms should be done away with at the university level: Wearing a uniform will not save money: Wearing a uniform ...

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Thoughts on leaving Pakistan

The last time I put thoughts to paper was a year and a half ago, when my husband and I moved back to Pakistan from the US. It happened very suddenly, under very sad circumstances, and there we were – thrust into a disorienting new life, filling roles we had never anticipated, never wanted, inhabiting, once again, the cloistered, uninspiring world of Lahore’s privileged class. Much elapsed during the past 18 months in Lahore – much to rejoice and remember. Engagements, bridal showers, weddings. Baby showers, and babies! Farewell parties and welcome-back parties, birthday parties and Pictionary parties. PTI fever, elections, and Pakistan’s ...

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Waar: Pakistan’s stark reality or hope for the future?

After the release of Waar’s trailer online I found myself being annoyingly corrected about how to pronounce the movie’s name. I’d invariably call it ‘War’ in front of Urdu lovers who would tell me it was Waar, meaning ‘to strike’. However, my friends at school would chuckle at me when I called it Waar and insisted that it was ‘War’.  As irritating as this was, there is an even more infuriating phrase I am certain you have heard when people discuss local ventures including films. Just like a worn-out bandage no longer covers or protects a scar, you’ll find this phrase invariably attached to discussions about new initiatives ...

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Sachin Tendulkar: Farewell to a cricketing genius

October 10, 2013. For most cricket fans, this day will hold different meanings; a day of sadness, a day of mourning, a day of nostalgia and a day of reminiscing. However, for the die-hard breed of Sachin Tendulkar fans, this day will only be permeated with one emotion; shock.  Yes, despite the criticism, despite the opportunist keyboard bashers who had jumped on the “malign Tendulkar” bandwagon for the past 24 months and despite the dozens of pundits clamouring for this day, Sachin Tendulkar’s retirement will always come as a shock to those who have lived their lives according to the rise ...

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Shop smart, save money!

It’s time to get smart about austerity. You’ve seen the plunging rupee and headlining inflation figures on the news but more than that you will have felt the pressure on your pocket. Whether you’re a member of the Birkin brigade or a low-paid blue-collar worker, you will be aware that money simply doesn’t stretch as far as it used to. I recently came across my accounts diary from five years ago and the figures were startling. Actual prices may vary somewhat depending on where in the city you are (Defence will be significantly more expensive than Garden for example) but ...

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Crystal clear water, clean air and hospitality: This is the Makran Coastal Highway

Pakistan has always been hailed as a paradise for adventurous souls. From the valleys and mountains of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa to the deserts and beaches of Balochistan, we have some of the most unique combinations of natural beauty in the world. Yet, the more I travel across different regions of this beautiful country, the more I realise how little I, like many of us living in the cities, know about the gorgeous scenery and breathtaking views that exist all around us, just waiting to be explored. This realisation hit me again on my recent trip to the Makran Coastal Highway and ...

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Does a 5-year-old rape victim have a future to look forward to?

She was just five-years-old. She still had many more years to go before she was meant to discover that the world is not a nice place and that heinous crimes are committed against innocent people. That life is unfair and some people have to bear more pain than others. That being a girl means what is between her legs would define her entire existence. It was too soon for her to know about all this. On the evening of September 12, 2013, a five-year-old girl’s right to dream was taken away from her – an evening where her usual plans would have ...

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