Stories about fate

A trial

If I were god, I would have put myself on trial first, and questioned my lack of a beating heart or the pain in my soul of the loss that humans suffer. Or the justice, I call my revenge – I caused on them which I could not script before the verdict against them for crimes against me. Yet I usher them as being grateful at trials of misery. And then to the hell-fires I would command them to go to instead as my decree of divinity to mute others as and when I will despite all knowing. For I am god, listening to none, commanding you to make a supplicant except for bringing the dead back to life. I seek forgiveness from myself, but I can’t, because conscience was not created in me, when I was made to be born ...

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She came to me for a contraceptive but her husband dragged her away

It was a few years ago when a 40/41-year-old mother of five children (her eldest in his late teens) came to me asking for contraception. After we discussed the pros and cons of the various contraceptives available, she decided to pick a pill that was appropriate for her age. Half an hour later, her husband, a man in his early 60s, stormed into my clinic, flashed me the same medication in his hand and asked, “What is this?” “This is a medication for women,” I said. “Is this a contraceptive?” “Yes.” He threw it in the dustbin and warned me that if I ever dared ...

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24 absurd beliefs Pakistanis have

Norms are beliefs about how members of a group should behave in a particular context. They are informal and often ‘invisible’ understandings and rules that govern a group’s behaviour towards particular religious, social, cultural, political and socio-economic triggers. Norms generally define what is acceptable in a society or group and are the building blocks for appropriate and inappropriate values, beliefs, attitudes, behaviours, ideologies and narratives. These rules are generally implicit. In addition to what is considered normative in societal, political or cultural context, there are smaller groups within a society which endorse a particular norm. On one hand, norms define how to move, what to wear, how ...

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Scotland referendum: If they can have it, why can’t Kashmir?

Today, on September 18, Scots will decide whether they want to stay with the Great Britain or opt for independence. This is a big day, not only for Scotland but for the entire world as this referendum will seal the fate of the United Kingdom. It’ll be a great setback for UK if they lose in the referendum, as David Cameron expressed on Twitter: On Thursday, Scotland votes – and the future of the UK is at stake. Please help keep our family of nations together: https://t.co/j0JkdjiK7f — David Cameron (@David_Cameron) September 15, 2014 The Scots are very happy about this step, as people are seen waiting excitedly ...

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In Messi I believe!

It has been a long time coming. Since Euro 2008, the Germans have been hovering around the edges of supremacy. Their only crime being that Spain, forever the underachievers had been pegged by fate as its darling. What Jürgen Klinsman started at World Cup 2006 resulted in a finals defeat to the Spanish in Euro 2008, a semi-final defeat to the same opposition at South Africa 2010 and the Italians in the semi-finals of Euro 2012. This time, however, the Spanish have been vanquished by their own doing. The once-famed Brazilians have been annihilated in an absurd seven minute stretch of play that will linger on as a scar ...

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Is the Pakistan team destined to lose?

Our team has been labelled ‘unpredictable’ by many.  The trend is that once our players set foot on the field, no one knows how they might perform; making the chase all the more interesting to watch. Of late, however, this unpredictability has faded away. Now there seems to be only one predictable conclusion to any match that our team plays – defeat. Last night, team Pakistan maintained its record of not winning even a single bilateral series against South Africa (SA) to date. The team ruined the first ODI match where the last six wickets were lost over a meagre 17 runs and ...

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When we were too poor to afford Blue Band margarine

I still remember the day that Blue Band margarine was introduced to Alamdar Bakery in my home-town of Quetta, Pakistan. The glossy silver packaging and the light blue printing stood out among all the other butter in the bakery’s refrigerator. However, I refrained from taking an interest in this new product since I was well aware that my parents would not be able to afford it. I continued to consume the inexpensive Liaquat Makkhan for breakfast even after the older brother of the baker recommended Blue Band with great zeal; I consoled myself by thinking that he was just trying to improve his sales. As the weeks ...

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At government hospitals, life is cheap

It is almost impossible to change the fate of those little children who depend on government hospitals to save their lives. Recently, I visited several hospitals in Karachi and the condition of those hospitals and the quality of the care provided to the children was disgraceful. The poor health system prevailing in Jinnah Hospital, especially, made my heart sink. There was no electricity and to my horror, a large number of insects and cats were roaming about in the wards aimlessly. The terrible stench from the toilets could be smelled till the far ends of the corridor, and to think that this is a hospital where cleanliness ...

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Make sure to have ‘lived’ life before you die

A 33-year-old friend of mine died two years ago, leaving behind two children and a husband who was madly in love with her. A car accident left her in coma for 30 hours before she passed away. Once people heard the news, they said it was an “unfortunate and untimely death”. As much as I hated knowing that I would never see her again, I knew this was God’s will, and that we all have to go where she went in her death. Death is an inescapable reality that every person has to face and certainly not an option we can avoid. ...

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My encounter with a ghost

I was 28 when I saw this dream. My marriage had just been arranged by my parents; something, having grown up around, I didn’t give a second thought to. I went to sleep untroubled. There was pitch black darkness everywhere ─ like a heavy blanket over everything. Then the shroud lifted to illuminate me sitting on a wooden chair at a small, round, wooden table with everything around me still completely black. Across the table from me there was another chair, and another occupant; a large cloaked and hooded ghostly figure, whose hidden eyes seemed to be fixed upon me. “Who are ...

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