Stories published in December, 2015

Dear Bilawal Bhutto, with your protocol, you undermine the value of a common citizen’s life

Dear Bilawal Bhutto Zardari, Let me start with appreciating the good work you did today. Thank you for taking out the time and inaugurating the new trauma facility at Civil Hospital. I am sure many citizens will benefit from it. And now let me address the more pressing issue. A baby girl died today as she was denied access to emergency treatment while you inaugurated the medical facility. I may not be able to find a better and grimmer illustration of the word ‘irony’. When you are chairman of one of the biggest political parties of Pakistan, you cannot act unaware of the difficulties ...

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Looking for organic pizzas tailored to your taste? Place your bets on Pizza Roulette!

Pizza is quickly becoming Pakistan’s go-to-food for hunger pangs. Initially starting with the presence of outlets such as Pizza Hut, the industry has become considerably more Pakistani-centric with local startups such as 14th Street Pizza and New Yorker becoming household names. The focus has gone from a quick bite to artisan pizzas, brimming with top quality ingredients and unique flavours. One such novel idea is being introduced by Pizza Roulette, an eatery which focuses on natural, organic pizzas tailored to the local palette of Islamabad/Rawalpindi. I had the recent pleasure of visiting the place in Bahria Town Phase four, where it’s located next to Frosty Café. As soon ...

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Is it really ‘shirk’ to wish someone a Merry Christmas?

As Christmas is nearing, I am starting to see the occasional anti-Christmas messages on the internet that say that greeting on the occasion of Christmas is haram (forbidden) according to scholarly consensus. Some are claiming that saying “Merry Christmas” is tantamount to committing “shirk” or associating partners with Allah. Of the many clerics that push this view, Dr Zakir Naik is a prominent one. He says, “What people don’t realise is that when you are wishing Merry Christmas, you are agreeing that Jesus Christ was born on the December 25th and… he is the son of God… which is shirk.” True, Islam is based on ...

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Why did Ali Xeeshan use fair-skinned models to promote dark skin?

With the year coming to an end, Pakistan’s fashion industry has had its fair share of good and bad publicity. From cross border collaborations such as the Indo-Pak fashion week held in Oman to fashion designers showcasing their collections in the Pakistan Fashion Week held in London, we’ve seen Pakistani fashion reach the zenith of success. However, we have also seen its depraved side.  I doubt we’ll ever forget the videos featuring crazy aunties barging in and breaking doors to get their hands on kurtis that were merely 50 per cent off. Not to mention that harrowing story of Tabassum ...

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Hina Rabbani Khar on Al Jazeera and the battle of media ethics

It would be a rather unfair statement if I assumed that virtually all Pakistani politicians lack the charisma to wholeheartedly defend their nation but without question, Hina Rabbani Khar’s recent interview in Aljazeera’s ‘Head to Head’ with Mehdi Hasan was one such exception. The former foreign minister of Pakistan, Khar, passionately defended Pakistan’s People’s Party (PPP) and Asif Ali Zardari’s controversial regime that recently took the social media by storm. Hasan, the host of ‘Head to Head’ posed some controversial yet intriguing questions at Khar, however, in the end, it all boiled down to a good, hot-headed debate. The former ...

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Will a person lacking creativity lose the show for not being a thinker?

The world is changing very fast. If we reflect on our past and compare it with our present, everything has changed. I think this transformation has been shaped and restructured through creativity that exists around us. The world is restructuring rapidly, and to remain in this race, one should create his/her own distinctive identity. Being creative is the only requirement to thrive in today’s world. However, the question that remains is, what will a person, lacking creativity, do to make themselves compatible in this world? Will they simply lose the show for not being a thinker? No – creativity is a ...

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Zulfiqar Mirza will not dominate the political scene in Sindh but he will dominate Zardari

The man who used to wear jet black sunglasses, a traditional Sindhi cap, and sometimes a cowboy hat has finally managed to defeat the Asif Ali Zardari camp after his long campaign that featured statements against the top Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP) leadership. Yes, I am talking about the Army officer turned politician Dr Zulfiqar Mirza. Those who know him closely since his student days will not disagree that Mirza was born with a rebellious spirit. The former home minister earned his MBBS degree and joined the Pakistan Army in 1980 in the medical corps. But his defiant nature led to his ...

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Series 2: “Checkmate” Part 2 Am I philanthropic enough?

Refreshed after a quick shower, I returned to our bright and airy living room with its high ceilings and brick fireplace. We spent a lot of memorable time here, as a family and with our friends. The positive side of our association with the Islamic center was that we had both Muslim and Pakistani friends. This was very important for maintaining the Islamic spirit in our family. I hoped our children would understand and maintain this connection too despite being ‘die hard’ fourth generation American Muslims. Ali was still in his recliner, engrossed in the evening news. “How was your party today?” he ...

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Quetta Gladiators may be the dark horse, but the team to beat will be Islamabad United

The highly anticipated player drafting of the Pakistan Super League T20 tournament began in grand fashion today. The crème de la crème of Pakistan cricket came together for a lavish ceremony at the National Cricket Academy in Lahore. The day began with the unveiling of the Karachi Kings franchise logo, and the big news that Javed Afridi’s Peshawar Zalmi franchise had traded with Islamabad for the first pick of the player draft. This would have a massive impact on future selections, which the Islamabad franchise has utilised quite well. As expected, Peshawar immediately picked Pakistan T20 captain Shahid Afridi as their ...

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“Bajirao Mastani” deserves a solid four out of five stars!

Sanjay Leela Bhansali is one, of a handful filmmakers, who has the talent to create a larger than life experience for his viewers. The cinematic prowess he displayed in “Hum Dil De Chuke Sanam” and “Devdas” was exemplary. His latest endeavour, “Bajirao Mastani”, however, has surpassed even his own tremendous standards. Ranveer Singh is a prolific actor eager to take on many different roles. His ability to appropriate every character he plays is quite impressive. If you are still in awe of his depiction of Ram from “Ramleela”, prepare to be blown away by his newest venture. Photo: Facebook Deepika ...

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