Stories published in March, 2015

Skip dessert if it means having this Jalaibee

What happens when you create a lot of hype for a certain product, pose it as the best of the best, and when it is aired, the end result is not only disappointing but abhorrently low in terms of quality and value? Jalaibee is the perfect example of such a product. The much talked about and marketed crime caper, Jalaibee, has too many angles to be focused upon. After all, it is about the continual revival of Pakistani cinema and seeing what role Jalaibee plays in it is of key importance. Let’s dissect Jalaibee and focus on what it is all about. Promotion of Jaliabee. ...

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Pakistan vs Australia: This was clearly not like the 1992 World Cup

If you have ever fallen in love, the kind of love that makes you feel the blood rushing through your veins for the first time, then you know what it is like to be a Pakistani cricket fan. We all have our afflictions, and for Pakistan it is cricket. Cricket is our choice of drug. No matter how much it hurts, the next time it is on, we will be watching for our fix. Every World Cup, I promise myself not to get my hopes up too high. I rationalise it in my mind. Even if all the statistics, the form, ...

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I did not ‘choose’ to be gay

They say I am a sinner and I will forever burn in inferno. I say, I am in hell right now and any inferno will be far comforting than the hate and fear that I experience right now, living in this world. You see, I am a gay man. But is this word enough to describe me? There are many facets of my life. I am 22-years-old and a geography geek who has an affinity for learning about different cultures of the world. My friends call me Wikipedia (I’m not proud of this name though). But my homosexuality gives me a hard time living ‘normally’. My parents ...

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Militancy does not hamper vaccinations in Pakistan – our negligence does!

In a country already strife with political, economic and social malaises, it is truly heart-breaking to see the gross negligence and inadequacy of the government costing the country millions of dollars and, more importantly, millions of lives. Pakistan just wasted 1.3 million doses of vaccine worth $3.7 million donated by UNICEF to protect children from deadly diseases. The vaccines had to be stored in cold temperatures to remain effective but, according to a Health Ministry official, the frequent power outage was the main cause of the loss, as top management failed to address the problem despite complaints by lower staff. Two officials have been suspended over ...

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Who needs Armani and Gucci when you have Modi?

The Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi claims that his fashion sense is God’s gift to him, given probably because most of the nicer gifts (gifts that he might have actually used to run a country) had already been given away. It’s heartening to hear that absurdities in political spheres are not limited to this side of the border, and that the Indian public is treated to exactly the same kind of drivel as we are. Photo: Reuters Of course such comments must be a breath of fresh air after the usual slew of opinions that Indian politicians tend ...

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On Frida Deguise ‘nuding’ her fashion line

Being happy in one’s skin is not an easy task. Being happy in one’s clothing is an almost impossible adventure. I have been told that the greatest form of happiness is to be one’s true and natural self. This is not a universal truth that I am preaching but merely a life lesson and something to live by. My good friend, Pramit, a leading journalist, and I were once working on a project together. It so happened that we were both invited for a breakfast meeting at the White House, a key location in our little town of intrigues and ...

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Sweet revenge is on its way with Pakistan vs Australia

Pakistan has finally managed to drag itself past the group stages and reach the quarter-finals of the ICC World Cup 2015… and what a ride it has been! The last time Pakistan was expelled from the tournament during our first rounds was  in 2007. The same happened in 2003. Therefore, fans have been susceptible to Pakistan’s progress in this tournament. And losing the first two matches of the group stages did little to improve the team’s image. However, they did recover soon from the initial blows and developed a better team combination – which led them to winning four consecutive matches and ...

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Will Pakistan ever truly accept its Christian community?

I cringe every time I hear the word “minority.” It is true that religiously we are different from Christians, but must we create a social difference too? Minority stands for ‘few’ and the way the term is implied it says ‘with lesser power’. If you find nothing wrong with calling someone “less than” then go ahead and play your part towards fuelling intolerance. The twin church blast in Lahore caused 14 Christian deaths and around 80 people were injured. An Islamic extremist claimed 14 lives and injured 80 innocent worshippers at a church. Amid the blood, destruction and havoc, the panicky mob lynched two bystanders when ...

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If you are gay and Muslim, “change your sexual orientation!”

I was shocked when I read the recent news story about a Muslim family living in Germany who wanted to arrange the marriage of their 18-year-old homosexual son against his will with a Lebanese girl. The son told the media that his family threatened to slit his throat and burn him alive if he did not change his sexual orientation. Eventually, the court intervened and saved the young man from the brutal punishment from his family. This news reminded me of an acquaintance, Azam*, who runs a delicatessen in New York. He told his mother that he was gay when they ...

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Daal bharay karele – The bitter delicacy

This is one of those jealously guarded recipes that rarely appear in blog posts and cooking shows. For one, bitter melon is not a vegetable everyone is fond of. Karela (bitter melon) is a very popular vegetable in Bengali cuisine. Traditionally, the first course of Bengali cuisine is bitter, to cleanse the taste palate for the main course, much like smelling coffee beans which prepares the nose to appreciate and discern the scents in a perfume shop. Daal is a soothing and comforting staple of vegetarians; the bitter savoury makes a delightful, nutritious combination preferred by many Bengalis. It is one of those things, ...

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