Stories about life

Bewakoofiyaan: ‘Practically’ perfect

For a good movie, subject matters a lot. Bewakoofiyaan might look like a usual love story at first glance but it’s actually a very well-penned and well-conceived movie. This does not mean that the movie has nothing to do with romance; the plot, in fact, is based on romance but it also talks about the other things associated with romance in today’s ‘practical’ world. The story revolves around Mohit Chadhdha (Ayushmann Khurrana) and Mayera Sehgal (Sonam Kapoor), new-age practical and career-oriented sweethearts. Both try to build their lives around career stability, well-stocked bank accounts and better market positions. Photo: ...

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Every time you buy a stolen phone, you take a life

Early last Sunday I was awakened by a call from a cousin. “My nephew, Abdul Ghaffar, has been killed.” Considerably shaken, I said, “What? How?” A reply came my way, “Cell phone robber shot him when he resisted.” At the funeral, I heard what had happened. Even though he had been robbed a couple of times before and had surrendered his wallet and cell phone, this time he made the fatal mistake of trying to grab the robber’s gun. The gun had gone off, shooting him in the neck. He was just 42, not old or middle-aged by today’s standards. Married with two kids and an average income, he ...

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If I had my life to live all over again…

If I had my life to live over again, I’d simply be me. I’d live with fewer inhibitions, I’d care less about what people think of me and look at myself through my own mirror. I’d walk barefoot on the cool wet grass more often, I’d watch more sunsets, I’d listen to the music of my heart and live by it, I’d walk with my head high and smile, even if mounds of worry overwhelm me. I’d spend more time with myself, just myself. I’d dare to make more mistakes. I’d say ‘no’ more often. I’d appreciate others more, I’d try giving more and not worry about ingratitude, I’d live with lesser insecurities, I’d express my happiness ...

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House of Cards: Calling all political junkies

House of Cards is an American political thriller drama series produced by Netflix, originally based upon a BBC series of the same name. The main premise of the show is set in present day Washington DC. It chronicles the political life and upheavals in corridors of power of the main protagonist of the series, Frank Underwood (Kevin Spacey).  Frank Underwood, the main character, is without a shadow of doubt the life and force behind the show. He is equipped with a typical southern accent, sensibilities and mannerisms, cowboy-ish charm and a shrewd, cunning demeanour in his arsenal as he begins his journey in season one as ...

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Lost in translation: 12 signs you’re new to Pakistani culture

Recently moving from Canada, where I’ve lived practically my entire life, to Pakistan, I’ve had to do a lot of learning.  Here are few of the things I have learnt since coming to Pakistan: 1) My mother-in-law asked me to clean char maghaz. Source: Reactiongifs I was relieved to learn that I was supposed to clean seeds and not four animal brains. 2) There is no uncle by the name of ‘lal baig’. Source: Reactiongifs 3) Don’t’ wear bronzer in Pakistan; rather than getting compliments on a healthy glow, aunties will recommend Fair and Lovely. Source: ...

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Like a phoenix reborn from the ashes

No place to hide, I’m ball-and-chain bound, Dropped in mid-air, crashed into the ground. Locked in constant battle, an emotional duel, No need for arson, your words be the fuel. You burn every bridge, every road set ablaze, Embers smouldering, everywhere that I gaze. Crawling through the ruins, no roof on my head, Crumbling walls, broken floors, as good as dead. Life has no meaning, love lost all its thrill, Vultures circling over me, moving in for the kill. You pushed me and shoved me, and put me under, But I got out unscathed, still makes me wonder. Thought I had lost all, but I held onto hope, Coughing and wheezing, got out of the ...

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The story of a drug addict: Opium was my drug, my addiction, my mistake

As someone who has been dependent on drugs twice in their life so far, if I had to tell you one reason why you shouldn’t do drugs it’s this: withdrawal is a b****. There are many reasons to do drugs, but the only reason not to that really matters, is really vivid and visceral is that withdrawal is extremely rough. Having regulations won’t stop anybody anywhere, not in Pakistan, not in the US, nowhere. This took me a while to understand, but here is my story, I hope it helps you. My love affair with drugs I started out pretty much like everybody else does, socially ...

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Protection of Pakistan Ordinance: Always guilty unless proven innocent?

The government tightened the anti-terror legislation of the country last month, as President Mamnoon Hussain approved the Pakistan Protection Ordinance (PPO). It declares all peace-disrupting elements as ‘enemies of the state’ and states protection of life to be the state’s top priority. However, many clauses of the PPO remain controversial. One such clause is clause 14 on burden of proof which reads, “An accused facing the charge of a scheduled offence on existence of reasonable evidence against him shall be presumed to be engaged in waging war or insurrection against Pakistan unless he establishes his non-involvement in the offence.” The drafters of the legislation appear to be ...

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A dialogue with my murderer

I am Bano. My mother used to call me Pari (Fairy). I was the only baby girl of my parents. I was killed by my uncle. My father was supposed to kill me but he didn’t have the courage so he asked my uncle for the favour. I was killed in the honour of my family’s good name which I destroyed. I was killed on Eid day. My grave is in my village and I was buried in my Eid dress. My father visits my grave in the dark so that no one sees him. My mother never visits my grave, she can’t make it. My ...

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Mufti Usman Yar Khan’s funeral, broke my heart but changed my life

I have never supported any political or religious party in my life. In fact, I am one of those people who tend to make a complete fool out of themselves when trying to indulge in a heated political or religious debate. But what I have known all my life is that anyone dying a death that was planned by another human being is simply wrong. Unfortunately, being a citizen of Karachi I see it happening daily. As the death toll continues to increase every day, our collective indifference also seems to grow. Every time we see the news, we quietly thank God that ...

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