Stories published in August, 2014

Scarlett Johansson’s ‘Lucy’ will challenge you intellectually

French writer cum director Luc Besson, whose work includes The Fifth Element, The Lady, The Professional, La Femme Nikita and Taken, is back to captivate the moviegoers with a high-concept hypothetical thriller – Lucy. It is a compelling hybrid, graced by volatility and lots of violence, intermingled by surreal bedlam that will challenge you intellectually. The creative inspiration of Lucy is based on a philosophical point of view that humans use merely 10 percent of their brain capacity, and if someone unlocks the rest of this cerebral capability, they will ultimately develop superpowers. Lucy is a story of an American woman, Lucy, played by Scarlett Johansson, studying in Taiwan, who is forced to ...

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There is no PTI or PML-N, there is just Pakistan

Imran Khan’s protest began against alleged rigging in general elections, transformed into a march and sit-in against the prime minister, and has blossomed into one of the firmest stances against status quo in the history of Pakistan. It is not just the number of people, but the kind and class of people in his sit-in that speaks volumes about the strength of his stance. These are people who were never seen in political gatherings or protests. The upper-middle and upper-class; educated people, professionals, women and children, have taken over the space that was once occupied mostly by simpletons, who were nothing but ...

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Don’t demolish Balaknash temple, Pakistan!

This year I had the opportunity to participate in the Janmashtami festival, the Hindu festival in which they celebrate the birth Hindu god Lord Krishna, the eighth avatar of Hindu god, Vishnu. The festival is celebrated on the eight day of the Krishna Paksha (dark fortnight) in the month August or September. As I entered the Gracy Lines area in Rawalpindi, I asked for directions to the Balaknash Temple, an 82-year-old temple that will be demolished soon along with 53 quarter houses. It is surrounded by FWO flats. As a guard at the check point told me where to go, he asked inquisitively ...

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Not her fault

I saw her eyes as she begged, I said forgive me and she left, I wondered what her life was like, Why she begged, where she slept at night. Because her feet were bare, Her clothes were torn, But was it her fault that she was born? In a family that can’t give her, All the things a child may want? *** Five-years-old when they came, Broke her innocence, broke her to shame, But why should she feel this way? Was the pain not enough, and now the shredded name? She was found somewhere in a ditch alone, Her clothes were torn, Her smile was gone. But was it her fault that she was born? In a world that gives men, All ...

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Rapist doctor arrested in Brazil, what would Pakistan do?

I recently came across an utterly horrendous news story. In Paraguay, a 70-year-old doctor was sentenced for raping and sexually abusing 39 of his female patients who came to his fertility clinic in Sao Paulo, Brazil. Roger Abdelmassih has been sentenced to 278 years in prison. What is even more disturbing is that this doctor was a well-known practitioner in his city and had also treated many Brazilian celebrities. He was well off, had a wife and kids, and was living a supposedly happy life. Yet he reduced himself to this. Though I was glad that he finally got punished, the news ...

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Taking a cue from Islamabad: A satire

Good morning. This is Aalia Suleman reporting from Karachi, where the two notorious marches currently in progress in Islamabad have ironically managed to spur off similar vehement sentiments in other areas of the population. It won’t be surprising if similar marches start raising heads all over the country. Currently we are interviewing the leaders of the two grand marches that are staging a sit-in at one of the largest grounds in Karachi, venue of hundreds of marriages every year. Mehrul Jafri (MJ) leads the Azad-Biwi-Tehreek (ABT) while Afreen Khan (AK) chairs the Jahez-Jalao-Tehreek (JJT). Though the mandates of both parties are pretty much ...

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5 reasons I still support Imran Khan

At least once a day, I am asked, “You support Imran Khan? Seriously?” It is mainly because I do not fit the stereotypical image people have about PTI people. Emotional, young, immature and what we call “trolls”. I like to think I am none of these. Very few in my field of work are open about their political tilts, if any. Maybe because there is a remote chance it may interfere with journalistic objectivity. However, I have been very clear since day one. Anything I report will say the truth and nothing but the truth. Even if it goes against the ...

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Is anarchy within Pakistan’s reach?

Imran Khan, Nawaz Sharif, Tahirul Qadri: A triumvirate of egos. This is what it is all about. You’d wish this was about democracy, but unfortunately, it is these three we should focus on to understand this. Pakistan’s current political crises are a joint concoction of blunders committed by Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N), Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) and Pakistan Awami Tehreek (PAT). PML-N instigated this with their utter refusal to take the opposition seriously, or accept the legitimacy of their demands. Perhaps they were yet to grasp the reality of the new face of opposition force; that it wasn’t going to settle for ...

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Mourinho: The man bringing Chelsea back

Nestled between the abandoned cotton mills and rows of tightly packed terraces, in this small pocket of East Lancashire, Chelsea taught Burnley a harsh lesson in what to expect on their return to the Premier League.  “We give the players a lot of education. I’m not a nightclub bouncer, I just look like one,” said Sean Dyche before the game. But none of his teachings can match the manner of Chelsea’s 3-1 victory for thoroughness. It started so well for Burnley, when Scott Arfield rifled them into the lead in the 14th minute. As his teammates stepped out from a corner, John Terry was caught daydreaming, allowing Matt Taylor to ...

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Wagon-wheel pasta: A little taste of Tuscany on your Pakistani plate

So if you are amongst 95% of the people of the world, you are probably intimidated by cooking. So was I, once upon a time. To look at a well-cooked dish was like looking at the great pyramids; fascinating and intriguing, but a mystery as to how it was built. But watching Nigella Lawson cook, who made it look like a piece of cake, inspired me to start cooking. And to avoid any complications, I started developing my own simple recipes. And if I can cook, trust me, so can you. Unless you have a cooking-phobia and faint upon stepping into ...

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