Stories published in February, 2016

The Tribe: No words to express its brilliance

No words, no music, no subtitles. The Tribe is a Ukrainian film which takes place in a specialised boarding school for the deaf. Sergey, the new student, is quickly inducted into a student gang partaking in crime and prostitution. After a series of horrendous events, Sergey falls in love with one of the student prostitutes and breaks one of the unspoken rules of obeying the hierarchy of the Tribe. The film is absolutely brutal in its depiction of violence and abuse. Without the use of dialogues or subtitles, the emotions and motivations of the characters appear utterly truthful and in some ...

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Will climate change cause more complex effects on sexual and reproductive health?

The Zika viral epidemic represents a perfect storm of climate change, disease, sexuality and reproductive health. In 2009, I was deeply interested in the effects of climate change worldwide. I work for a regional organisation and I was studying trends which I thought would impact women’s health and rights. Disasters – both natural and climate change induced were one of these trends. Three key events stood out in my memory; the 2004 Indian Ocean tsunami, the 2008 Cyclone Nargis in Myanmar and the 2010 Pakistan floods. These incidents affected the partners we work with on the ground, and many had rushed in to deliver aid. A ...

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Why are we holding the Pak Army accountable for things the government should be doing?

On December 16, 2014 seven men entered the Army Public School (APS) in Peshawar and killed 141 people including 139 children. On January 20, 2016 several gunmen entered, and killed 22 students of the Bacha Khan University Peshawar. These aren’t the only mass shootings to have taken place at educational institutions around the globe. Since the 1960s, thousands of students have been killed in mass shootings at schools in countries including Canada, Germany, England, France, Finland, Israel, Azerbaijan, Lebanon, Brazil and Pakistan. Some, not all, of these attacks were terrorism related. Each nation has reacted according to the nature, intensity and motives of these ...

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How does the Pakistan Super League fare against the Indian Premier League?

It has been a long time coming but the Pakistan Super League (PSL) is finally here… well, almost. Ever since it was first propositioned, during Dr Nasim Ashraf’s tenure as PCB chairman in 2007-2008 – note that the Indian Premier League (IPL) had its first season in 2008 – the Pakistani cricket fan has been anxiously waiting for his own version of the star-studded, cheerleader-crammed, boundaries-brimmed T20 feast. This delay of seven years has resulted in Pakistan being the last Test playing nation to jump on the Franchise-T20-League bandwagon even though suggested otherwise. England also does not have a franchise based ...

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7 times future predictions caught our attention but failed to happen!

Recently, a Bulgaria born clairvoyant Baba Vanga made head lines in newspapers all over the globe because she foresaw an invasion of Europe by Muslim extremists (most probably by Islamic State – ISIS) in 2016. The blind prophetess, who is also known as Nostradamus of Balkans, further predicted that there will be use of catastrophic chemical warfare against Europeans in this war which would lead to the creation of an Islamic caliphate by 2043. She even claimed that Rome will be the epicentre of the new Muslim political-religious rule. Baba VangaPhoto: YouTube This is not the first time ...

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Saala Khadoos: One of the most powerfully written scripts of 2016

Rajkumar Hirani is a name trusted with visual delights and great story-telling. R Madhavan is one of the most underrated actors of Bollywood who never fails in surprising his viewers by playing different and unusual roles. In this film based on a number of true stories and facts, they joined hands. Saala Khadoos is a tale of passion for sports (boxing) and the country’s pride. Let’s see what Saala Khadoos has in store for its viewers. Saala Khadoos starts when Adi Tomar (women’s boxing coach) is transferred from Delhi to Chennai because of a forged anonymous sexual harassment complaint received from a boxing student ...

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8 reasons why classic Pakistani dramas need to come back

A few days back, while surfing through the inane number of television channels late at night, I came across a repeat telecast of Aangan Tehrra on PTV. Since I had nothing better to do at the time, I decided to watch it for a while… and just in the first few minutes, I was hooked. I remembered watching this show as a child in bits and pieces. But seeing two episodes back-to-back made me realise what a masterpiece this drama was. And at the same time, it dawned on me about how little our current dramas have to offer. Therefore, in the name of ...

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Have all the parties concerned in the case for PIA really lost it?

The business of the state is to run the state and to govern it for greater public good. There are no two opinions about this. That, in this day and age of corporatisation and decentralisation, means the state should not be running banks, airlines and factories. Rather it should focus on setting up regulatory authorities and let them run companies which provide these professional services. The jury is still out on the economics of privatisation of State assets. The previous examples of PTCL and UBL are being bandied about on how the imperatives of transparency and profitability were bypassed. But what about the ...

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Revisiting Islamabad’s Hotspot: The obvious sexism that no one notices

Hotspot – the place where all the brats and burgers of Islamabad ‘hang out’ Don’t get me wrong. I’m not here to bash these brats and burgers. Half of my friends come under this category and I love them. I’m not here to criticise Hotspot ice cream or food either. Their food is actually not bad. In fact, I’m not here to talk about any issue of importance. I’m here to talk about something insignificant. Something no one cares about because they don’t believe it is a problem. Something all these brats and burgers just accept and, consequently, condone. Something that these ...

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Pakistan Super League: Let the games begin!

February 4, 2016 marks an extremely important date in the history of Pakistan cricket. The idea which was first conceived in 2012 is finally going to turn into a reality; the curtain will rise and Pakistan Super League (PSL) will surface onto the stage of lucrative Twenty20 cricket leagues. The teams PSL has five teams; Islamabad United, Lahore Qalandars, Karachi Kings, Quetta Gladiators and Peshawar Zalmi. They were sold for a total of $93 million and the teams will battle it out for a winning title. PSL Chief Najam Sethi had promised to bring in stars of the T20 format in the ...

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