Stories about nothing

The dark hope of freedom

They could clearly hear the sound of wailing from their neighbour’s house. Another suspected freedom fighter was dead at the hands of the Indian army. Guilty or not, it didn’t really matter and guilty of what? Ayaan thought. Of trying to free themselves from the evil tyrants? He glanced at his mother and saw her praying. Obviously praying for the safety of her family and for peace in Kashmir. His mother was a dreamer despite the hell she had been through but Ayaan himself had given up on hopes and dreams, all he focused on was blending in with ...

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Roy is only a “tarka” of star power, nothing else

Sometimes a movie is advertised and marketed with a promise to deliver an all-in-one production – but in reality, it is nothing more than amateur work at best. Roy is one such movie. What do you expect when you have a cast which includes a pure entertainer like Ranbir Kapoor, a dependable actor like Arjun Rampal and a gorgeous beauty like Jacqueline Fernandez? A blockbuster movie. Yet, Roy is nothing more than one big enigma. Audiences everywhere were anxiously looking forward to watching the two talented hunks share screen presence, but sadly, that too couldn’t save the boat from sinking. ...

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Yes, Imran Khan’s marriage IS my priority

Let me begin this with a disclaimer: I have nothing against Reham Khan. She should not be harassed or have her private space infiltrated. She is free to choose whatever and whoever she wants to. I hope it’s clear; this is not about Reham Khan. This is about the discrepancy in Imran Khan’s choices. Imran, like any other right wing politician, exploits the religious sentiments of his voters. We are a nation who as children fall into the trap of our grandma’s religious manipulation, “Hazoor (SAWW) ne toh kabhi kisi khanay se inkaar nahi kiya, chalo achay bachoon ki tarha kaddu kha lo.” (The Prophet ...

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Help, my husband is an addict!

I had always feared this to be the truth; I tried to tell myself I was over-reacting, that this was normal behaviour and nothing to be worried about. But now the proof is overwhelming, I can deny it no longer. I have tried to stop him many times, to stop him from his own destruction but it’s useless. Many nights I wake up and find my husband is not in bed. I follow the lights to the living room, and there he is, caught red-handed!  His eyes are bloodshot; he is tense, and irritated. Carefully, I go over, and tell him ...

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Why can’t we buckle up?

Pakistan’s television industry has seen from amazing times – when classics such as Dhoop Kinarey charmed viewers all around the country as well as across the border – to the not-so-amazing times, when aunties gathered around television screens for nothing better than ‘saas-bahu’ soaps. Fortunately, the growth in television productions has recently been phenomenal, with dozens of serials airing on the ever growing number of television channels in the country. As the entertainment industry expands, its impact on society surpasses the mere purpose of entertaining. It begins to highlight social issues and influences thinking and behaviour among the population. A ton of storytelling on Pakistani ...

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Operation 021, taking Pakistan cinema further

First and foremost, before getting down to the brass tacks of the movie Operation 021, those that have the slightest of doubt or inclination that Operation 021 mimics or is made along the same lines as Waar can put their doubts safely to rest.  Operation 021’s principal plot, overall theme, script, character build up and dialogue are poles apart from what was previously seen in Waar. For that reason, Waar and 021, apart from having Shaan Shahid as the main lead, do not have an iota of commonality in between them. 021 is created under the umbrella of One Motion Pictures and the Azad Film Company; produced by Zeba Bakhtiar and her son Azan Sami Khan. ...

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Eidul Azha and Pakistan’s hygiene issue

A few days ago, the cattle markets began receiving a huge number of people every hour, coming from different parts of the city, to buy the sacrificial animal that suited their budget and met their needs convincingly. Different animals, ranging from cows and goats to camels, were seen almost everywhere, albeit on a street or a former empty, barren piece of land. Animals were tied to posts almost every step of the way. And we all know, where there is a herd of cattle, there is a foul smell taking over the air. The city started to look, and smell, like a ...

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All PTI did was talk about alternatives

I write this piece as I see tear gas shelling and aerial firing towards massive crowds that are protesting peacefully outside the Prime Minister House. I write this as we hear of a girl from Dera Ghazi Khan who set herself on fire after not getting justice from the police for gang rape, and now her mother is part of the Azadi dharna in hope that her daughter’s death would not go to waste. I write this as I see our police become a mercenary force for a ‘supposedly’ democratic government that has taken on the role of, what I have often heard ...

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Book Review: ‘Servants of the Goddess, the modern-day devadasis’

Imagine being paraded in a procession of singing men and women on a high slab with nothing on your body except neem leaves as soon as you hit puberty, and being ‘deflowered’ when you don’t even know the reality of what just happened to you. Photo: Catherine Rubin Kermorgant, taken from official website of the author. Imagine being dedicated to a temple at the age of six years and wearing a beaded necklace for the rest of your life. Imagine being a mother of two at the age of 15 (or even less). Imagine never being able ...

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Bates Motel: A cleverly plotted out thriller that is nothing like the movie

It was Friday night and I was really hoping to watch something different from the usual stuff that is shown on TV. It is then that I came across a series that seemed quite catchy solely by its title – Bates Motel. With modern alterations, it is based on the Alfred Hitchcock’s 1960 film ‘Psycho’, starring Anthony Perkins as Norman Bates. I must say that the movie was a twisted thriller that was cleverly plotted out. I recently purchased season one of the series and frankly speaking, it is pretty darn good! The series stars Vera Farmiga (Norma Bates), a great, talented and fresh-face ...

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