Stories about 2013

11 minutes to Karachi Central Jail: Another Taliban and al Qaeda jailbreak in the making?

“We pledge to God that we will spare no effort to free all our prisoners.”  An Islamic website posted a 22-minutes audio recording by al Qaeda leader Ayman al-Zawahiri, in July of 2013. Since then we have seen four successful jailbreaks, orchestrated by the al Qaeda, in Pakistan, Libya, Iraq and Yemen. The Pakistani Taliban and the Islamic Movement of Uzbekistan have formed a new organisation called ‘Ansar al Aseer’ (supporters of prisoners), that is specifically designed to free prisoners and support their families. Here is a list of jailbreaks accomplished by the al Qaeda in recent times: Date Freed Dead/Injured Location 2013-07-21 500 50+/unknown Abu Ghraib and Taji, Iraq 2013-07-27 1,117 Unknown Benghazi, Libya 2013-07-29 250 12/8 Dera Ismail Khan,Pakistan 2014-02-13 29 10/unknown Sana’a, Yemen All al Qaeda linked jailbreaks follow ...

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Modi cannot become India’s prime minister

Hindu nationalist leader and Bhartiya Janata Party’s (BJP) prime ministerial candidate Narendra Modi has a fantastic dream – a dream to rid India of the Indian National Congress. “Mahatma Gandhi’s last wish was that the Congress party should be disbanded. The time has come to fulfil his wish. We must work towards building a Congress free India,” said Modi while addressing a public rally. The Gujarat chief minister has reiterated this desire of his on several occasions. Agreed, the Congress is corrupt to the hilt and it definitely deserves to be punished. The party’s extremely poor performance in the recently held assembly polls in five states does ...

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Jai Ho: Salman Khan, the new Sunny Deol?

Jai Ho has been the most anticipated movie of 2013 and 2014 as it was announced to be released initially at the end of 2013 by Sohail Khan under the name of ‘Sher Khan’ and later as ‘Mental’. The name was eventually finalised as ‘Jai Ho’. The movie is a remake of the movie Stalin, a Tollywood film inspired by Pay It Forward (2000). The movie has a lot to offer to the common man, the ‘aam janta’ as they call it. It has drama, action, romance, comedy, weird songs, Salman Khan’s very own dancing style and, of course, Bollywood masala. Salman ...

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Misbahul Haq, only second to Imran Khan and Javed Miandad as captain!

On January 14, 2013, I wrote a piece stressing the fact that Misbah is very much a necessity for Pakistan’s One Day International (ODI) cricket. I argued that Misbah has been far better than his colleagues and should not be dropped, predicting that he will fine tune his game-plan and will improve as a batsman. Well, as it turns out, Misbah has indeed stepped up his game since then. Misbahul Haq of Pakistan bats during the ODI match between South Africa and Pakistan at Sahara Stadium Kingsmead on March 21, 2013 in Durban, South Africa. Photo: AFP Almost a year ...

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Mirror mirror on the wall, why has Pakistan’s rowing team been forgotten by all?

“Did you know that Pakistani rowers made it to the Olympic selection event in 2013?” Almost choking on my tea, I burst out laughing at my friend’s question. Regaining my composure, I replied, “Pakistani rowers? Olympics? We don’t have rowers, much less international level rowers! Stop joking and let me drink my tea in peace.” Unfazed, she said: “Surprising isn’t it? But it is true. If you don’t believe me, try googling it and it will give you a list of our young rowers who made it to Uzbekistan in 2013.” So I did google ‘rowing in Pakistan’. Not only did I find the list of ...

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‘The Fault in Our Stars’: I died a few times while reading

We all have that one book we come across once in a while and wouldn’t mind reading again. I’ve had a similar experience with John Green’s ‘The Fault in Our Stars’, which is one of the bestselling fictions of 2012 – 2013. I think I died a few times while reading the book. This book is TIME Magazine’s number one ‘fiction book of 2012’ and Goodreads ‘Choice of 2012’ winner; a 4.5 out of five stars rating. The book is also currently in line for being produced as a movie to be released in June this year. It is anticipated to be one of ...

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18 mind blowing quotes by Pakistani politicians in 2013

Last year, our nation went through many a tragedy. From being held hostage by terrorists to being engulfed by sectarian violence, the terror spree has gone on without any breaks. In this madness, we have had our politicians providing us their ‘pearls of wisdom’. While this year we have missed the late Pir Pagara, Zulfiqar Mirza, Pervez Musharraf, Rehman Malik and the like, who had given us truly memorably comments regarding national security in the past, I was still able to collect some quotes which managed to become top headlines. Here is how our leaders and politicians have shared their valuable opinions ...

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My favourite movies of 2013

Having seen this world up close and personal, I decided to reject it and build my own reality – a reality that was filled with movies, funny pictures of cats and a pinch of tobacco. These have been my friends and have given me much-needed hours of pleasure and escape from the insanity of this world. Although some of these movies gave me only temporary respite, others lingered long after I had watched them. Some made it necessary for me to look back at life from a different perspective and so, movies have been, for lack of a better ...

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An oracle’s predictions for Pakistan 2014

On a recent trip to Karachi’s Hawks Bay beach, I was taking a walk and thinking about the past year. There were some highs and lows, both on a personal level and for the country. In all respects it has been an extraordinary year. The country went through a massive election and witnessed a peaceful change of guard in the political spheres. It also saw the meteoric rise and then farcical irrelevance of a major political party while another came to terms with an ever changing post-election scenario. There were pockets of good news followed by disheartening reports of attacks, economic issues amid promises of a ...

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Dhoom 3: Drama, action and Aamir Khan awesomeness

Dhoom 3 was possibly the most awaited Bollywood film of 2013, and boy did it finally release with a dhoom (bang) all over the world. The film managed to do exceptional business in Pakistan, India, Dubai and the US and I personally think that the Dhoom series is at par with any Hollywood action movie, perhaps, even the Fast and the Furious series. Aamir Khan and Katrina Kaif display the merchandise for Dhoom 3. Photo: IANS First things first – contrary to the gossip, Dhoom 3 is not a copy of Now You See Me, at all. Yes, the storyline revolves around ...

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