Stories about cousin

October 8, 2011
 Sidrah Moiz Khan
TOPICS

Would you marry your cousin?

A recent post “Why you should not marry your cousin” on the medical consequences of marrying within the family sparked intense debate on whether the tradition still has a place in Pakistani society. While many comments on the post contended that these marriages are permitted both in Islam and by Pakistani law most found them unappealing. In this video I asked a few young Karachiites whether they would marry their cousins. All of them say no. Besides the general “eww” factor which was the primary reason most interviewed gave for not marrying their cousins, a few said that they did not think it ...

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Identity for sale

My fellow countrymen, everything in this country is for sale. Let me elaborate. Recently, my cousin completed his graduation and his family thought it was time to send the boy abroad for higher studies. My uncle, his father, got him all geared up with all the necessary files and documents, but little did he know he was in for a surprise. When they reached the passport office, they were told that there was a problem with my cousin’s identity card. The passport officials then directed them to the office of the National Database Registration Authority (Nadra) where the real problem ...

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Fear and self-loathing in Pakistan

When I returned to Islamabad after five years, I realised how much Pakistan had changed. There were security checks at every entry and exit point of the city and uniformed men looked suspiciously at every car that passed them. “Good job,” I thought after seeing them and assumed they were doing their job properly. But then I noticed that most of the drivers they pulled over had a few similar qualities: they were all  men with long beards wearing shalwar kameez. I understand that terrorists are usually in this type of attire but does this give guards the right to stop ...

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My Blackberry and me: A love-hate relationship

I was meeting my friend after 18 months. We hadn’t seen each other since our college days and athough we had kept in touch, Skype is really not an adequate substitute for a face-to-face conversation. Needless to say, I was looking forward to meeting and catching up. Conversation started, we laughed, we talked but she devoted an absurdly large amount of attention to her BlackBerry. Every three minutes there would be a ‘ting’ after which she would pick up her phone and read something, smile, giggle or frown, and type furiously. The first few times, I waited patiently and listened to ...

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Is a Thalassemia test too much to ask?

As I typed the list of thalassemia centers all over Pakistan, my cellphone started ringing and diverted my attention. On inquiring who was calling, I heard a sad and depressed voice on the other end. A father’s voice. I usually get calls but there was something special about this particular one. The guy got married around two years ago to the love of his life (who was his cousin). Now they have a one-year-old baby… and that baby is a thalassemia major. According to him, no one in their family had this disease, but both of them were thalassemia minor and ...

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