Stories published in May, 2015

‘No groom for you’ – The dilemma of an Indian gay man

Most concerned Indian parents worry about their child’s happiness and would like to see her/him live a happy and fulfilled life, and being married is traditionally considered part of that equation of fulfilment. The search begins to find the correct partner, by word of mouth and other avenues. One method includes placing a newspaper matrimonial advertisement in a local or national newspaper to draw upon the eyes of many potential suitors and their families for marriage. Once the ad is placed, the phones begin to ring and emails are exchanged, all leading to a potential match. Everybody is happy! Yay! However, for one such ...

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Today, one week later, we still mourn

Never in my wildest thoughts did I ever imagine that my eyes would leak like an open tap of water when writing a story about brutal murder. I was a reporter, after all. I had seen the worst and reported on things people wouldn’t bare to imagine. But this time was different.  When we first start reporting, we are taught to keep our own biases and opinions out of our stories. Under no circumstance are we to get involved. Objectivity is key, they taught us. This time, it was personal. Two days earlier, a friend of mine asked me why I don’t ...

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Looking for a blissful holiday? Forget Thailand, hello Zanzibar!

The orange of the flame trees was so vivid that I felt it would come off on my finger if I were to touch it. The colour of the flame trees stands out in my memory when I think about Zanzibar, with its white beaches and dreamlike turquoise waters. Zanzibar, an island off of Tanzania, is a beautiful place to escape to. The brilliant green of the trees is unfettered by billboards, tiny shacks with metal roofs crowd the roadsides, selling bright red, yellow and blue football jerseys, t-shirts and flip-flops. The locals are predominantly Muslim, the women are dressed ...

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Four ways to condemn violence against minorities in Pakistan that are all wrong!

Minority communities in Pakistan are thankful for their moderate friends from mainstream Sunni school of thought, for supporting them in these harrowing times. Countless have condemned the attacks against minorities, and many have risked their own lives to stand up for others. However, in a few circles, some arguments in opposition to violence against minorities, while appearing to be a condemnation of violence, often end up being detrimental to these side-lined communities. Here are a few of those arguments, often heard from mainstream moderates (and if you hear yourself making one of these – please stop): 1) “We shouldn’t kill Shias because Shias and ...

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Piku advocates for unmarried, working women

Brilliant art direction, exceptional storyline, unconventional relationships and very subtle performances come together to make Piku an enjoyable and unforgettable family drama with a harsh reality. It is an informal, witty and emotional anecdote about the convoluted rapport between an educated daughter and her inflexible elderly father. The movie focuses on daily tribulations in a cheerful and carefree manner which effortlessly speaks to the audience. Directed by Shoojit Sircar, the movie relates the story of a 70-year-old retired Bengali man, Bhashkor Banerjee (Amitabh Bachchan), who lives in Delhi with his daughter, a working woman, Piku Banerjee (Deepika Padukone). Photo: Facebook page Photo: ...

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Why Game of Thrones is infinitely better than Grey’s Anatomy

This post is for all those who like to compare Game of Thrones with Grey’s Anatomy. I would like to correct such people and let them know that no matter what happens, Grey’s can never be as amazing as GOT. And here are my reasons. Although I am no longer a fan of Grey’s, I must admit the show was one of my guilty pleasures at one point in time. Being the only brother of four older sisters, something peculiar like this was bound to happen; it could’ve been a lot worse I suppose, but oh well. I remember the show ...

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The Rohingya of Burma is the Shia of Pakistan

This is possibly one of the least highlighted human rights violations that has and continues to take place in the day and age when communication and cyber systems dominate our lives and nothing seems to escape an ordinary person’s attention. This is probably the most dragging, prolonged episode of persecution and genocide in modern history, the worst of its kind since the holocaust even. I’m talking about the Rohingya catastrophe – a story of blatant hatred, spite and animosity. Regrettably, I never dug deep enough into the origin of the Rohingyas. I did, however, come across an article called The Muslim Rohingya ...

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Are we really ready for Zimbabwe?

Pakistan announced its T20 squad today with former captain Shoaib Malik and star all-rounder Umar Akmal making a comeback. Muhammad Sami, another lost tale of the Pakistan cricket biopic, was given a chance to showcase his pace program against Zimbabwe – the first team to visit Pakistan since 2009 for a T20 two-match series and an ODI three-match series. The whole series, from its very start till now, has faced a lot of controversies, contradictions and confusions. It is a new beginning for Pakistan cricket but it has come after a lot of struggles. The Zimbabwe Cricket Union’s advance team visited Lahore to ...

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Bombay Velvet is all style and no substance

Bombay Velvet is a noir crime drama set during the 50s-60s era. It is directed by Anurag Kashyap, the man behind movies which have evolved into cult classics, such as Gangs of Wasseypur, Ugly, Dev D and Black Friday. Bombay Velvet’s protagonist is Johnny Balraj (Ranbir Kapoor), an ambitious street hustler-cum-boxer, fighting in the pits for the adrenaline rush. The major part of the movie pivots around the rise and fall of Balraj, from the obscure mediocrity of street hustling to becoming a manager of the most happening club in town, of course known as Bombay Velvet. How he traverses that journey should be seen by the audience themselves. [caption id="" ...

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Dear Son, I will not put you on a high pedestal just because you are a boy

Dear Son, You are at a very tender age where everything seems new and exciting, but you will grow up in a very confusing and chaotic world. This letter aims to steer you through the tough times which will leave you perplexed and make you appreciate the times that will take your breath away. Firstly, I refuse to mollycoddle you and put you up on a high pedestal just because you are a boy. Our culture dictates that I should let you run riot and behave incomprehensibly just because, “You are a boy and that’s what boys do.” Well, not in my house. You will not ...

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