Stories published in September, 2017

The Hungry: Can Bollywood do justice to Shakespeare’s bloodiest and least respected play?

Turning a theatrical drama into a full length movie is not an easy job and in most cases, it proves to be a challenge for the writers and directors. The endeavour becomes even more challenging if the theatrical drama in discussion is ‘Titus Andronicus’ written by William Shakespeare. Director Bornila Chatterjee must have experienced an overwhelming series of trials while working on her latest project, The Hungry. It is an Indian movie starring Naseeruddin Shah as Tathagat Ahuja and Tisca Chopra as Tulsi Joshi. The remaining cast includes Antonio Aakeel, Neeraj Kabi, Sayani Gupta, Arjun Gupta and Suraj Sharma. As per reports, The Hungry is scheduled to be screened at ...

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10 reasons why we have a love-hate relationship with Eidul Azha

It’s that time of the year again – mutton lovers rejoice. Wish I could say the same but sadly, I am not a mutton lover and I am not rejoicing. But for those of you that are – let’s talk about what makes this Eidul Azha so great and not so great at the same time… 1.An endless supply of food Every Eid, I think that is the ultimate goal. How much food can I consume and how fast? Are you ready? One, two, three, let’s go… Me trying to hide my addiction to food in front of guests: Me once they leave: 2.The endless relatives ...

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A trip to King’s Landing, minus the dragons and the Lannisters

I am one of those people who belong to the cult of the famous HBO series Game of Thrones (GoT) that has now ventured into the end of its second last season. Croatia’s coastal city, Dubrovnik, therefore, became a natural destination in my travel wish list which is doubled as King’s Landing in GoT. Many scenes of the show have been filmed in this picturesque city. I landed in Dubrovnik on an extremely rainy morning and checked into an all-girls hostel. Since the larger part of my stay was in the neighbouring budget friendly Bosnia, I had expected Croatia to be a money-friendly place ...

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A single cowhide can fetch around $50 in the open market, but where does that money go?

Eidul Azha is finally here. Just the mere thought of it fills my mind with vivid images of beef and lamb stews, korma and pulao. But let’s not forget Eidul Azha also means rejoicing with our family and friends and understanding the concept of sacrifice. Though let’s be honest, that is secondary in the face of the scrumptious food we get to enjoy. Growing up in Pakistan, Eidul Azha also meant spending time at the bakra mandi (cattle market), picking out the best sacrificial animal. It also involved spending Eid morning with the butcher in the yard as he slaughtered, skinned and ...

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Is it fair for host countries to prepare pitches favouring their conditions?

The 22-yard-long cricket pitch has been of pivotal importance since the inception of the game. The nature of the strip has a bearing on the outcome of a cricket match and will continue to do so in the forthcoming years. In the shorter formats of the game, particularly since the advent of T20 cricket, the general trend has been to prepare flatter pitches in order to neutralise the result of the toss. But the pitch still plays an extremely crucial role in cricket’s purest format, Test cricket, which is why surfaces used all over the world tend to vary according ...

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It was desperation that won in the end

“Manji di baoun waaj aandi… Bakhtu di jaag khul jaani.” (This charpayi makes too much noise… It will wake Bakhtu up.) Allah Ditta thought as he struggled to get up while making as little noise as possible. He glanced back at his sleeping son. He bowed down and planted a kiss upon his brow. Rushing out, he turned down his wife’s offer for breakfast, “Bakhtu jaag gaya te tenu pata fer…baharoun kha laisan kujh.” (What if Bakhtu wakes up? I will eat something there). These past few weeks had been nothing short of an ordeal for Allah Ditta. It was still dark out as ...

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If Saudi Arabia and other Middle Eastern countries can practice safe and hygienic qurbani, why can’t Pakistan?

Amateur butchers with no skills, armed with sharp knives and cleavers of various sizes and shapes will once again see daylight on Eidul Azha. These part-time novices can be seen swarming our cities during the wee hours of Eid. They are stationed at every nook and corner and seem trained in their craft of deception. In our quest to find the most reasonable butcher, we end up overlooking important factors such as hygiene and whether or not they are skilled enough to perform qurbani (slaughtering) the correct way. It is imperative that we keep such factors in mind before hiring butchers. After mosques ...

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No cow, no beef, no slaughtering – Will Indian Muslims be able to celebrate Eidul Azha with zeal?

India at 70 is an entirely different country as compared to when it started its journey as an independent nation in the summer of 1947. It ranks amongst the leading economies of the world, sent a satellite to the moon, is nuclear-armed, and is a country admired by most. But unfortunately, this progress cannot mask its ugly reality. In 1947, the most pressing challenge, other than economic development, was settling the dust of the Partition. It was an urgent and long-term necessity needed to create societal harmony. An atmosphere where the country’s secular and multicultural temperament would return to normalcy was imperative. Decades of ...

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Understanding Muslim nationalism and ‘The Pakistan Anti-Hero’ through the eyes of Nadeem Farooq Paracha

Nadeem Farooq Paracha is one of Pakistan’s prominent liberal journalists. His plunge into the field began in the 1990s, even though he initially gained fame as a music critic. However, over the years, his writing has become fairly eclectic and he has touched upon many cultural and political aspects. Furthermore, he has also excelled as a satirist. He is the author of two bestselling books as well, titled ‘End of the Past’ and ‘The Pakistan Anti-Hero’. The first book was centred on the way Pakistan started to transform from a moderate and pluralistic society to a more hard-line one. The latter, which was released recently, traces ...

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When did Eidul Azha turn into a vicious spending competition?

Every year, Muslims all over the world observe the festival of Eidul Azha to commemorate Prophet Ibrahim’s (pbuh) submission to the will of Allah (swt). By obeying His order to sacrifice his only son, Hazrat Ismail (AS), he proved that he was a true servant of Allah, and it is this spirit of sacrifice that is to be observed by Muslims every year. Unfortunately, instead of realising that they have to be ready to sacrifice every precious possession in the way of Allah, Eidul Azha is now observed only as a ritual. And with the exception of a few, most Muslims do ...

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