Stories about Shahbaz Sharif

Shehbaz Sharif can buy himself a helicopter, but it’s too costly to provide adequate medical facilities in Punjab?

The aftermath of the Bahawalpur tragedy is a harrowing tale of gross incompetence and disregard for human life. Before this, little emphasis has been placed on how the massive loss of life could have been avoided. For instance, Army helicopters had to be called in for transporting the burn victims to the hospital since the rescue services didn’t own one. But here’s a little fact – just three months ago, a Rs2.25 billion Russian helicopter was bought by Shehbaz Sharif for personal use. The question that should be asked here is, whether it was bought with public funds that could have been utilised elsewhere. Numerous lives could have been ...

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Hosting the PSL final in Lahore is a bad idea

After continuous hype and controversy, Punjab Chief Minister Shehbaz Sharif has finally given the go-ahead to hosting the Pakistan Super League (PSL) final in Lahore on March 5th. Following the announcement, many international players have decided not to participate if their team reaches the final. Adding to that, the famous panel of international commentators headed by the likes of Danny Morrison and Ian Bishop are also not traveling to Pakistan with the rest of the crew. So the real question that still remains unanswered is, is hosting the final in Lahore really worth it? Here are three reasons why the ...

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A Lahori’s first visit to Karachi

This summer, I had the chance to pay a short visit to Karachi – a city I’ve never had the opportunity to visit before. Soon after landing and taking a cab to the hotel, we started hearing stories of locals out and about in the city. This aged driver, who drove us to our hotel, told us how, for the last few months, Karachi has been a lot more peaceful because of the Rangers’ operation. He also said, “This operation should be extended to the entire province to ensure complete implementation of law and order.” That driver was not the only one who felt that the Ranger’s ...

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Will Karachi ever receive the same affection as Lahore?

With state-of-the-art bus stops, multiple lane roads suitable for the most developed countries and educated traffic police to remind one to put on a seatbelt, the chief minister has done well to clean up the most metropolitan city in the country—Karachi. Suddenly, the daydream is broken with an ear-piercing horn from behind. The traffic light turns green, or at least appears to be, as the cars in front start inching forward. To be honest, it’s difficult to see through the cloud of smoke emitted by the Lal-Kothi-bound bus. As one throws the car into drive and honks at the stationary Flintstone ...

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Dear God, where’s my T-shirt?

Dear God, I have a serious complaint to make. You must know… but of course you do… that there are now T-shirts out there with that man Raheel’s picture on them. God, this is too much! I am the PM not he! Why have you allowed this to happen?? Please God, remember that I am still weak although I don’t look it, because I have just had a very big operation and although many people don’t believe it (they say I went to my London apartment in Mayfair… how delicious that sounds… just to hide when that stupid Panama information leaked out but you ...

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My top ten memories of Pakistan

Three years is not much time in which to learn about a society as diverse, complex, and fascinating as Pakistan. However, for foreign diplomats, it is a fairly long tour. As I leave, I wanted to share with the Express Tribune readers what I hope will be an interesting and unique perspective on this great country; on some of the things that we, in the American government, have done with our Pakistani partners; and, of some of the things I have most appreciated during my time here. 1. Viewing Mughal Architecture I have lived in India, Pakistan, and Afghanistan off and on ...

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How did General Kayani’s brother manage to scam DHA?

In late 2012, a man familiar with the domestic property market had asked me if anyone would do an expose on “the DHA scam”. Curious about what he was referring to, I asked for more details. He said General (retd) Ashfaq Parvez Kayani’s brother Kamran Kayani – also a retired officer – was scamming DHA Lahore out of money through an unfulfilled contract. Instead of putting a stop to it, DHA had given him a fresh deal in Islamabad. Still confused, I asked for more information. He essentially described the residential ‘non-development’ DHA valley, which is among the subjects of the current National Accountability Bureau (NAB) ...

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Women should depend on men for mobility? WoW!

Owing to the fast-paced nature of the world and domestic economic strains, women are no longer confined to the domestic sphere but are seen venturing out into the public. While some say women are taking back the wheel, it can be argued that it is not reclamation that is taking place but for once, it’s an assertion of the female right to belong in the streets. The ‘Women on Wheels’ (WoW) rally is a perfect example of this. On January 10, 2016, 150 women took a huge step. They swerved onto the streets of Lahore on motorcycles after training with ...

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Does Lahore really need its own Disneyland?

Lahore will have its own ‘Disneyland’ – a recent news item that does not carry significance as far as headlines are concerned, but does carry a ton of significance otherwise. As things stand currently, only a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) has been signed between the Punjab government and the Chinese company. While a MoU has no legal value, it does point a finger towards Shahbaz Sharif’s priorities. Coming from an industrialist background, his focus towards capitalism is unquestionable. From investing in infrastructure to handing out laptops, the Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) government is a big proponent of liberal economic policies, despite being a conservative party otherwise. But ...

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Is Maryam Nawaz gearing up to be the next prime minister of Pakistan?

On October 22nd, the former US First Lady and current Secretary of State, Hillary Clinton, survived an 11-hour long congressional hearing pushing her closer to the Oval Office. The same day, Justin Trudeau, the son of former Canadian Premier, Pierre Trudeau, began his takeover of power in Ottawa, Canada. On that very day, just shy of her 42nd birthday, another political heir made her global debut standing next to Michelle Obama in the eastern wing of the White House.  This woman is Maryam Nawaz, the daughter of Pakistan’s incumbent third time Prime Minister, Nawaz Sharif, who has announced a commitment to educate more girls in her country. The fact ...

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