Let’s Love Pakistan – a New Resolution (IV)

Published: July 29, 2012

Dholkis, maiyon, mehndi, valima and post-wedding dinners; Pakistani weddings are an experience like no other! PHOTO: REUTERS

Here I am with the fourth instalment in the “Let’s love Pakistan” series. There is so much to love about this country that I am compelled to continue this list:

27. Abdul Sattar Edhi and Bilquis Edhi:

Abdul Sattar Edhi began his ambulance service in the 50s, and has since then been a busy, busy man. Today, Edhi Foundation runs the world’s largest radio-linked ambulance service all over Pakistan, and operates countless old age homes, orphanages, clinics, women’s shelters, rehabs and mental asylums. The duo has won dozens of local and international awards and honours but they’ve also been targets of some serious criticism over the years. This does not seem to faze the heaven-sent couple though, and they seem to have only one agenda in life: to serve the disadvantaged. As if all this wasn’t enough, Edhi also holds the world record for working for the longest time without taking a single holiday, and they live humbly—and happily—in a two-bedroom flat within one of their orphanages. Isn’t it time we honour them with some serious appreciation?

28. Shan masalay (spices):

These Rs50 magic boxes have rendered every Pakistani mum an expert chef with a knack for creating the most delicious desi dishes with consistency and extreme precision. Looks like good things do come in small packages after all!

29. The geniuses with all those As:

Sure they make us regular nitwits look like a bunch of idiots, but let’s face it; these geniuses are doing us mighty proud globally. First, Ali Moin Nawazish set a world record with his 22 A Levels A grades; then Ibrahim Shahid went on to secure 23 As in his O Levels. But the wonder-kid who put teenagers everywhere to shame was a boy from Taxila, Syed Zohaib Asad, who created headlines with his 28 A grades in O Levels recently! Just imagine: if he kept ten of those As for himself and donated the rest, he could secure university admissions for at least five good-for-nothing nitwits! Respect? Definitely!

30. Madam Noor Jehan:

She came, she sang, and she conquered. Sometimes it’s hard to believe she’s been gone for over a decade. The woman’s legacy is unmatched, just like her tunes, distinctive voice and larger than life personality—all of which are reminiscent of one of the greatest singers to be born in the subcontinent. And Pakistan was lucky enough to have inherited her!

31. The Pakistani cricket team:

Granted every Pakistani cricket lover’s heart probably looks like a piece of antique china in a frat house by now, but really, there’s something about the boys in green that you just can’t hold a grudge against for long. So what if they’re caught treating fans like piñatas and striking match-fixing dealsthat land them in jail? They’re the closest thing to superheroes we’ll ever get, and for that they deserve our unapologetic, unconditional support.

32. Our political gullibility:

For years, us Pakistanis have been played by crafty statesmen; so much that it has virtually choked our self-esteem, turning us into an easily excitable nation of masochists that thrives in its own blatant ignorance, misfortune and helplessness. Three cheers for sweet surrender, because after all, what else can we do?

33. The Pakistani wedding:

Complete with half a dozen dholkis, a maiyon, mehndi, valima and post-wedding dinners, Pakistani weddings are an experience like no other! Even more so if you’re a close relative and your family is uninhibited when it comes to having some pure, unadulterated hullah-gullah: the real desi wedding style!

34. Sharmeen Obaid-Chinoy:

Ignoring the heaps of nonsensical (not to mention unfair) negative comments, I present you all with one simple question: What other third world country that’s burdened with perpetual shame and misfortune like our poor Pakistan can claim to have accumulated immense international acclaim by winning an Oscar and an Emmy? And all thanks to the same woman! Cherry topping: Sharmeen’s inclusion on this years’ Time 100 list!

35. Joint families:

Among other invaluable things like strong familial bonds, love, respect and division of labour, when it comes to cooking, cleaning, compromising and looking after each other, think of the money we Pakistanis save by opting to live with Ammi and Abbu in our enormous ancestral homes. Who says goras are born with all the luck?!


Read more by Saad here.


Saad Zuberi

An Economics graduate with a post-grad in International Relations who’s currently pursuing Chartered Accountancy while working as a freelance writer for a number of local publications.

The views expressed by the writer and the reader comments do not necessarily reflect the views and policies of The Express Tribune.

  • hassan

    i was sure that i wont find any comments on this read because the title says ” lets love PAKISTAN”.

    we live here, we eat here, we do anything and everything good or bad here ….. but we dont love our country and its so painful to see people looking for reasons to hate this country.

    i came here jus to say I LOVE MY COUNTRY … ITS GOOD OR BAD OR WATEVER … ITS MINE … and i will do everything i can in my capacity for its betterment. Recommend

  • Bilal

    …. Or lets pop out of our bubble and live a more realistic life.Recommend

  • Bilal

    Also, the A’s wont get us ANYWHERE. Period. Nowhere around the world are people so stupid to appear in 20 subjects, and when we Pakistanis do it, we claim to have made a Guiness world record. You know Pakistan is going nowhere when it takes pride in such petty things.Recommend

  • Bilal

    please stop already ur making a mockery out of your own article. half of the things on the list such as the cricket team, joint families and weddings are things that i hate about pakistanRecommend

  • Parvez

    Love your perseverance ……………..but I know that you know that now you’re struggling.Recommend

  • Ali S


    Jealous much?Recommend

  • What the…?

    Most of your article discusses trivial stuff…why the heck should we be happy about shan masala??!!! Recommend

  • faizan cheema

    you don’t need any reason to believe in Allah….so u don’t need any reason to love your country… and proving your love by playing your role is much more important than by just loving it!!! Recommend

  • http://habloid.wordpress.com Habiba Younis

    well, for someone who is works in scorching conditions for minimal wages, and is welcomed home with loadshedding, is drying up his blood in trying to make ends meet, the things mentioned in this blog hardly make any sense. is someone poor in such conditions supposed to cheer Pak coz kids are getting As, chinoy won oscar or extravagant ‘pomp & show’ weddings when his own family suffers in dark? in realistic terms, patriotism jingles are a luxury only for people who arent included in majority of Pak’s poverty stricken masses. Recommend

  • sana khan

    guys, if you read the first article in this series you’ll understand what the writer is trying to say… i’ve been following the list and i think it’s the trivial stuff that you wouldn’t normally care about that makes pakistan so special

    and bilal, i’m sorry you’re so cynical and you hate the pak cricket team and your family…. but i’m sure you’re in the minority………..Recommend

  • G Indian

    Why stopped at 35? If you look for it you can take this list to 1000. Recommend

  • http://Gilgit Zaman Punyali

    So now we are left with reasons such as “Shan Masala” to love Pakistan. I doubt if this whole ordeal is to promote Shan Masala.Recommend

  • Parvez

    I read somewhere that our TV’s LIVE cooking shows are the first of their kind and they are a phenomenal success – Saad you could check that out for your list.Recommend

  • all the commentators!

    i cant help but agree with the author, please take into perspective that we have enough political isssues . you dont need to tell them to us. do you think you can find minor things like a freaking masala. or that sharmeen mapped pakistan and gave a global recognition to its assistants who were the students.

    @sana khan: precisely
    @Habiba Younis: people like you are the exact reason, who dont let you see the positive side. refer to the article “ten things i hate about rain” you will find the answer there!!!
    @What the…?: why would you be intrested in masala you ask. let me tell you why, its a product not limited to Pakistan. The trendy conditions of girls getting married and moving abroad this pecular masala is the ones they disscuss to cook eaisly. if you have beeen abroad you will realize its importance.get it?Recommend

  • Ahmed sidduqui

    Is that for real? Most of us don’t have “enormous ancestral homes”. Most don’t have a roof over their heads, have to defecate under the stars, can’t get a square meal a day, afraid of getting blown to bits by Islamic jihadis or Sunni-shia violence or some such. Sometimes I think some folks who write on ET are the 1% of the elite who are westernized, ashamed of the rest of us, an would like to paint rosy pictures without daring to face thet truth.Recommend

  • Babur Sohail

    we dont have any choice except to LOVE PAKISTAN. so love pakistan and be positive.Recommend

  • Bilal

    @sana khan – disliking a joint family system doesnt mean i hate my family i just value my privacy, im sure you are educated enough to realize the difference between the two..or at least i hope, otherwise there will be one more point to go in our authors list.Recommend

  • Sadique

    Ths list why we should “love” Pakistan reads like a compilation of products and people the writer is trying to promote. If it was not for a serious platform such as the Express Tribune, I would assume that this is some kind of a joke. Be as it may, there are equally thousands — even, millions — of reasons why Pakistan is not loved by us and the world at large. Be honest and try to eradicate such scourges as corruption, self-aggrandizement (when we have nothing to be arrogant or proud of), violence, religious extremism that leads to terrorism, intolerance to the ever-diminishing religious minorities, cleanliness (not just in the environment but also within yourselves), etc. Follow these guidelines and you – and the world around — will start respecting you. You will, suddenly, find people wanting to visit Pakistan (we have beautiful spots, yet no tourist wants to set foot on our soil). Foreign businesspeople wanting to meet their Pakistani counterparts tell the latter to either come over to Dubai or India (where Pakistanis are not welcomed). If a Pakistani presents his green passport anywhere in the world, he is first taken aside for interrogation despite having a valid visa for the country he is visiting. Why don’t we return to the comity of civilized nations? What are we leaving behind for the next generations — children, grand children and thereafter? Think, my brothers and sisters, and contribute in any way you can to improve the conditions in Pakistan. Recommend

  • Sameera Qadir

    Dear everyone who’s being so overtly cynical and doesn’t agree with the things the writer has listed, why don’t you put your all-knowing brains to some good use and make some suggestions!?

    It’s easy to sit and criticize without trying to be a part of the solution…. if you think shan masalay aren’t something Pakistanis are proud of… think again. ask your mom or cooks just how important they are in every kitchen these days… and i’m sure the only reason they have made it to this list is because it’s a PURELY PAKISTANI PRODUCT! Just like all the personalities mentioned by Saad in these lists… they have made it here because they have done Pakistanis proud in one way or another…. if you beg to differ, please do so in a civilized manner by putting forward a reasonable argument.

    and the guy who was ticked off by the last point about ‘ancestral homes’… dude, grow up… it’s a general observation….even the small 200 sq yard homes Pakistan’s middle class generally lives in are larger than the homes reasonably well off Americans and Brits live in. Everything is not about money… its a part of our culture.

    And lastly… I’ve just about heard enough from the nonsensical critics of ET blogs…. I’m sorry to point this out but Express Tribune does not cater to the jaahil dhobi ka baccha who doesn’t have a roof over his head. It caters to people from middle and upper class families who’ve had a decent education and have laptops and jobs where they spend a few hours checking out this website….
    Seriously…. we Pakistanis need a reality check like yesterday! Recommend

  • Mrs Moin

    Lovely feel-good list. Keep it up Saad! Recommend

  • Mufazzil

    Where are the optimistic people of our country or are these indians who are commenting :p No offence.Recommend

  • Raw is War

    the masala packets seem to be the best reason yet.Recommend

  • Jamil

    I would like to talk about Pakistani wedding very true, we are blessed to have a country like Pakistan. our weddings are f unfilled with lots of memories attached to it. we not only have mayun, mehendi but we do have a series of dawat, like Chauti and so. i love PakistanRecommend

  • Aasim Mukhtar

    Very well done, you have identified many valid reasons to love Pakistan. But do we actually need a reason to love Pakistan? Is it not enough that it is our home and provides us the Identity and makes us who we are.Recommend

  • Aleem


    What’s so unrealistic about this list? As far as I can tell, none of these reasons to love Pakistan are fictitious or made up. They’re facts. These things have happened, these products already exist and these people have already done something to make the country proud.

    Why don’t you pop the bubble you live in and join the rest of Pakistan down here on the ground!? Recommend

  • https://twitter.com/pugnate Noman Ansari

    I am not Indian, and I think to have a world record set for A-Level grades is a ridiculous thing to be proud of. It is unnecessary, and kinda khuar. Recommend

  • K Sarim

    @Noman Ansari

    yeah…. i agree… just like all the khuar people who’re running and competing and panting and looking silly in london right now all for a little golden disc they can wear around their necks for 5 minutes….
    the those kids got might not be necessary, but they did it… and their effort and success has been recognized as extraordinary by the biggest examination board in the world! stop being so negative and be a little supportive. thats how you can help your country. not by pissing over others achievements because you think they are insignificant.Recommend

  • Ebad

    I love point no. 32…. So true! We love being ruled by these incompetent politicians and that is why we keep voting for them! Recommend

  • Mohammad Ali Gaad

    We should love our dear Pakistan for all things, it has served us with or not ..Recommend

  • J.k

    This was such an amazing article. I am so printing it and sticking it on my cupboard to give me and those around me hope when we are feeling down. Good work Saad!Recommend

  • http://www.pkhope.com/ Amna

    Pakistanis are the Best :DRecommend

  • observer

    A better resolution would be- Let us hate none, Ahmadi, Hindu, Christian, Liberal Fascist, Aasia Bibi, NONE- Ameen.Recommend

  • http://www.exceptionalmovies.blogspot.com Rana

    good read–Love My CountryRecommend

  • A.R

    I LOVE reading this series, They make me feel so proud of pakistan and i agree that sharmeen obaid is getting a lot of hate for something that doesnt deserve anything but adoration by the country !Recommend

  • Hammad

    Thanks god there is no PAK ARMY in this list.Recommend

  • Doctor

    Loving the series so far. Another number of possibilities that could be added in future articles are:

    Imran Khan-we are all proud of him
    Pakistan Railways and PIA.. well they’re in shambles but have seen their glory days
    Rivers and Canals network
    Pakistani Armed forces
    Karachi Stock Exchange
    Telecom Sector
    Sohail Abbas
    Jansher Khan

  • I:oveIslam

    I love Islam!Recommend

  • Sumaira

    Loved the series!……..well said Seema Qadir!…… its time we start appreciating what we have!… really we have no option but to stand up for our country!….given the circumstances its easier said than done but its about time we start preserving what we have!…..every nation evolves with time and its our bad luck we evolved under a bunch of scumbags!….this might sound unrealistic but its never too late for a revolution!Recommend

  • Nadeem Sajawal

    YESSSSSSSSSSS…..I am a PAKISTANI n IM proud if itRecommend