Stories published in May, 2017

Dear Pakistani universities, you cannot disrespect your students by infantilising them

We, the educated citizens of Pakistan, are concerned about the administrators of various universities and their obsession with the private social lives of their students, especially with regard to their inter-gender interactions. We are hereby compelled to issue the following notice, to address this disturbing phenomenon. To all university deans, chancellors, proctors, wardens, and administration officials, We thank you for upholding our long-valued tradition of lovingly blurring the line between an educator and a parent. In the light of the socio-political advances made over the past few decades, this paternalistic tradition has not only been rendered moot, but has become outright obnoxious. Parts of your campuses ...

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Life after Younus Khan and Misbahul Haq – what does it look like?

Growing up in a perpetual shadow of conflict and turmoil, Younus Khan and Misbahul Haq were two beacons of calmness that you could count on to somehow make things better. We are fortunate enough to be in the same era as them, watch them steady the ship on countless occasions and reach new heights in the process. Younus and Misbah were deeply engrossed in a storyline that was full of emotions, more lows than highs, and the highs underappreciated. When Misbah went down at Lord’s, he picked up Pakistan’s crest that had been lying in the dirt since 2010 and proudly placed it on the honour boards for upcoming generations ...

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Our greatest sin: Letting our founder die in vain

The shape taken by Pakistani politics over the past few decades serves as an indication of the coming times. I have no qualms about the fact that the young heirs of the political families, currently in the phase of growth, will be the ones forming the government in the future. Quaid-e-Azam Muhammad Ali Jinnah and Liaquat Ali Khan were among the most prominent politicians of their time but they cannot be viewed in the same light as the conventional Pakistani politicians. Even comparing them to their successors or the present day political elites makes them sound like a species of some kind that did ...

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Mooroo: Cool is mass marketed, quality has to be found

YouTube is the most prominent source of consuming entertainment. In this post-cable era, YouTube is the chief provider of quality content on a regular basis. I find myself lost in its inter-web for hours. Occasionally I find a channel that really hits the right spot and I find myself binging all its videos in a marathon that can last for days. Namely: The Nerdwriter, How It Should Have Ended, and Casey Neistat are a few channels that I could sit back and watch for hours. They’re talented people with great ideas and excellent execution. If I had to make a ...

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‘Alien: Covenant’ doesn’t bring anything new to the franchise

The 70’s decade is about to come to an end and everyone along with their dogs is in awe of Star Wars. With this admiration, came the love for all things extra-terrestrial but then Alien happened and suddenly people were reminded that the outer space isn’t as fascinating they first thought. Ridley Scott managed to create a sci-fi/horror classic that conjured up a frighteningly chilling picture of the alien form that might be waiting for us out there in the void and the audience lapped it up like crazy. The ‘largely hit and lately miss’ franchise has since gone through a number of variations with various directors but Alien: Covenant is, if ...

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Don’t wait till Mother’s Day to tell your mother you love her

Standing helplessly beside my father’s bed, I watched as he breathed his last breath while holding my mother’s hand. My mother was devastated at that point in time but she was still strong. She was strong enough to reassure us that she will guide us through these tough times; strong enough to ensure us that she will be there for any obstacle we would ever have to face this point onwards. Time has proven that my confidence and trust in my mother was spot on. She is a remarkable lady with spiritual abilities; she always remained composed throughout everything and never let ...

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This Mother’s Day, let’s pay a special tribute to mothers who don’t need their child to be “normal”

What is a special child? You could scour through piles of books or websites on the internet. You could ask doctors or child specialists. You could ask anyone but the only person who knows the answer to this is a mother – the champion of life and longevity, the captain of endurance and consideration – that is the mother of a child who has been rendered special. Hearing the following phrases must have a huge impact on a mother, “Is he a little different?” “Yes, your child is a special needs child. He cannot keep up with the ‘normal’ kids.” She spends nine months preparing for her bundle ...

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The parasitic relationship of Pakistan, the shark, and Afghanistan, the remora

Reality is more complicated than fiction. Before someone loses a fuse by just reading this statement, let me explain. Fiction, no matter how fantastical, has to make some sense at the end of the day, otherwise it would not be able to appeal to any ‘reasonable’ audience. I apologise for using the term ‘reasonable’ here but I must make some sort of differentiation, otherwise people would point out the weirdest fictions out there as examples also known as House of 1000 Corpses. In fiction, two brothers who despise each other throughout the narrative would somehow find common ground and get back ...

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With Ehtram-e-Ramazan, we might as well change our flag and make it all green

Pakistan never ceases to shock me. Be it its controversial Prevention of Electronic Crimes Bill (PECB) 2015 which could get us in prison for tweeting against the powers that be, or the formidable strategy of fighting terrorism by banning pillion riding, the government has come up with creative ways to use the law against the public. Staying true to its tradition, the government has recently announced another bill which states that smoking or eating in public during the month of Ramazan will lead to three-month imprisonment for the “offender” along with a fine of Rs500. This has been proposed as the Ehtram-e-Ramazan (Amendment) Bill, 2017. There have been mixed reactions to ...

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Pakistan finally has its very own live action superhero movie, and boy will it blow you away!

The superhero movie category is one of the most lucrative film genres around the globe. In modern times, Marvel studios have made an absolute killing with their Avengers franchise at the box office while DC Entertainment, amongst various others, have desperately tried to jump onto the superhero bandwagon with a varying degree of success. Our next door neighbour was also quick to follow suit with Toofan and Mr India, starring the great Amitabh Bachchan and the evergreen Anil Kapoor respectively. India was dabbling its cinematic feet in this particular genre as early as the 1980s. Now, notwithstanding the animated 3 Bahadur, we finally have a live action superhero film that ...

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