Stories about sectarian killings

#ShiaGenocide is a reality, not just a ‘fab’ Twitter trend

Another sectarian attack in Parachinar. The infamous hashtag Shia Genocide, however, only lasts momentarily on Twitter before being taken over by more worthy trends like #replaceMovieNameWithSharamnak. A thoughtless comment by a random person inspired this post. “Why isn’t it called #SunniGenocide when people die in Parachinar?” Firstly, let me explain that genocide isn’t claimed by the Shias because it’s the fab trend these days, just in case someone was confused between gadget hype and reality. Second, genocide isn’t an award or laureate we’d all like to place in a glass showcase. It is the epitome of inhumanity which rages on caused by the efficient inaction ...

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When the Presidential election is more important than the Parachinar blast

Pakistan is a rather strange place. If you are unable to fast because you are unwell, you can end up with a black eye and maybe a few broken ribs. This is courtesy of our informal, yet thorough and self proclaimed moral police marching down the streets 365 days of the year; they are the ‘righteous’. However, if you want to join in the Ramazan festivities beware that shopping for iftar in a local market or going to a mosque may become a gamble on life.  The twin blasts in Parachinar yesterday, left at least 50 dead and around a 122 severely injured. ...

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When eating in Ramazan means asking for a beating

With the holy month comes an all encompassing wave of piety – dairy companies’ fuss over how their milk will make Iftar a more spiritual experience and television actors don designer shalwar kameez to host Ramazan transmissions. Yes, Ramazan is very festive in our part of the world. Amidst these merry happenings, a video went viral, recently. A man was beaten to pulp in Karachi for eating during this sacred month. The video showed him bleeding profusely as a few fretted around him and a camera man struggled to get the best shot of his blood smeared face. It was a ...

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I am a common man and I am contesting in the elections

My name is Mohammad Jibran Nasir. I am 26-years-old and a lawyer by profession having completed my LLB followed by an LLM. I finished my studies in 2010 and upon my return to Pakistan after my two year stay in the UK, I started my first philanthropic venture, “Pehla Qadam“ (first step). Pehla Qadam was a flood relief camp I set up in Karachi with another friend to generate Rs100, 000 in a month so that the same may be donated towards relief efforts. At the end of that month we had collected funds and donations in kind worth over ...

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The sharks have tasted blood

Nowadays, if you have a personal grudge to settle or a fight to pick, make it about religion and you can muster a sizeable little army to do your job for you. What’s more, you and your cronies are likely to get away with it; and that too, scot-free. Even our newish baptism in judicial activism and public lip-service to outrage, isn’t likely to wake our slumbering giant of a government to pin you down and charge you. After all, we still don’t know who was responsible for Gojra, and we definitely won’t know who instigated the mob in the ...

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Protestors, to get the message across, learn your rights

The peaceful demonstration for the Abbas Town tragedy at Teen Talwar on Monday, under the calligraphic engravings of Quaid-e-Azam’s motto, was bound by faith and discipline. Around 50 people gathered at the roundabout, holding placards which called for peace and justice – but the day didn’t have a happy ending. The small crowd of 30 to 35 people that stayed post-maghrib was asked repeatedly to disperse by the police. At first, they were told that they would not be provided security until 7:30pm, but people responded that they would stand at their own risk. Later, they were informed about a ...

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When a child dies

His eyes; bright, innocent and carefree, Guileless; so perfect in their entirety, Smile; pure, sweet, untarnished, certainly, it was cherished.   Mother, father- forever doting, Precious like a diamond, As beautiful as a lily floating, In crystal clear waters.   But his life, taken away so suddenly, Cut short, ’tis such a tragedy, Why must things be so? The mother, she scarcely believes her eyes.   On the cold stone floor he lies, “No” she whispers, “he is sleeping”, My eyes fill with tears, I cannot help weeping.   “Wake up! Dear one, wake up!” She cries again and again, He does not, will never again, rise, Still she calls his name, in vain.   I cannot feel what she feels, I only taste a ...

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Unity — a vision foresighted

Most of us remember and casually reiterate Quaid-e-Azam Muhammad Ali Jinnah’s formula for a better nation: unity, faith and discipline. The three words have been overused (often in the wrong order), and they are slowly losing their meaning. Nevertheless, the patriotic romanticism associated with them only grows stronger. If we evaluate how far we’ve gone in actually implementing the father of the nation’s formula, we cannot help but notice how the three elements of high importance are not being taken as equals. Perhaps, expecting Pakistan to employ anything that has to do with discipline is a vision too foresighted. Faith has boldly overshadowed discipline, but ...

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Would Jinnah, a Shia, also have to leave the country he founded?

August 15 marked the completion of 65 years since our country came into existence. Yes, it was August 15 and not August 14, however, we officially celebrate our independence day on the 14th. The Pakistan we see today is not the Pakistan envisaged by the founders of this country. There were a lot of mishaps surrounding the birth of this country as it faced a pre-mature labour. Short-sightedness on the part of leaders of the Pakistan Movement coupled with the intrigue that arose by the parting Britishers resulted in a country that was in shambles as soon as it came ...

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Pakistan is not ‘only for Muslims’

In my freshman year of college I wanted to set up a Pakistani students association to network and interact with other Pakistani students in the area and also to promote and share our rich culture with the diverse student body in the United States. As I finished writing the constitution and prepared to launch the organisation, I was approached by another Pakistani student who was thinking of relaunching the Muslim Students Association. She met with me and suggested that we merge our organisations and simply call it the ‘Muslim Students Association’. I asked her why and how that made any ...

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