Stories about The Express Tribune

One-on-one with Senator Chaudhry Shujaat Hussain

The phone rings… Me: “Hello?” Person 1: “Chaudhry Shujaat Hussain aap sey baat karain ge.” (Chaudhry Shujaat Hussain would like to speak with you.) Me: “Okay.” Maintains a calm tone while jumping around Phone on-hold, music plays… Person 2: “Baat kijiye Chaudhry sahab se.” (Talk to Mr Chaudhry please) Me: “Okay.” Still jumping… Senator Chaudhry Shujaat Hussain (Sen CSH): “Assalamu Alaikum, kaisi hain aap?” (May peace be upon you, how are you?) Me: “Walaikum Assalam. Main bilkul theek hoon. Aap kaise hain?” (I’m perfectly fine, how are you?) Sen CSH: “Theek. Bohat hee acha article likha hai aapne.” (I’m fine. The article you wrote was very good.) Me: “Thank you so much for your appreciation.” Sen CSH: “Jo hum apne initiative ke through message dena chah rahe thay, aapne bilkul sahi tarha woh logon tak ...

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Blaming women for divorce in the name of Islam?

This article is in response to the very illuminating, thoroughly informative, thought-provoking essay by Ahad Kashif in The Express Tribune titled Pakistan and high divorce rates: The girl’s parents are to blame!  The said article is littered with the ubiquitous problem in our society which is stuck in the throes of reconciliation between Islam and modernity. Islam and modernity, you say? How could this be? This is a concept that eludes many of the citizens of our over-populous nation and they finally throw their hands up in the air, let out a dramatically long sigh and say, “You know what? Not to be sexist or anything but ...

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Putting journalists behind bars (or in coffins) – the loss is yours!

Last week, a delegation of foreign journalists visited our newspaper’s thrice-attacked office in Karachi, Pakistan. As we hustled to make them feel comfortable while simultaneously trying to explain the newsroom dynamics, one of them asked us in a matter-of-fact tone. “Do you support the current government?” There was a nervous silence as each of us lingered over the question for a few seconds. Until one of my colleagues responded, “We try and support no one. Our job is to report things as is.” All of us nodded in unison. In a simple sentence, she had summed up the essence of what journalists all across ...

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10 things I hate about being attacked at work

1. The fear. The fear that whoever is chucking grenades and has been firing bullets for the last 10 minutes is about to enter the building. Should I be hiding under my desk? Or should I be leading my team somewhere? Or should I follow my gut and run screaming up and down the hallway? 2. Watching your colleagues run terrified out of an emergency back exit, only to hear another hail of bullets echo in the dark street outside the office. The anxiety as the door they ran out of is slammed shut by those panicking inside. 3. Crouching low and kicking yourself multiple ...

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To Pakistani social media trolls, don’t you have any manners?

The Merriam Webster dictionary defines etiquette as ‘the rules indicating the proper and polite way to behave’. The history of etiquette dates back to prehistoric times when man first began interacting with others and hence started devising rules for making these interactions bearable and pleasant. Over the centuries, as societies and human interactions started falling into specific slots, etiquette was drafted for different settings. For instance, there is etiquette for behaving with elders, with neighbours, with teachers, with siblings, with parents and so forth. Similarly, as the presence of social media grew progressively pronounced in our lives, the proper etiquette of ...

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Down memory lane: This Eid, enjoy my mother’s recipe of Mutton Dum Piyaza!

Each Eid reminds me of the happy times I spent celebrating Eid as a kid at my maternal grandparents’ house in Rawalpindi some 20 or more years ago. Funnily enough, it was the hustle and bustle the day before Eid that I found most exciting. Being the eldest grandchild, I believed my job was the most important one; to make sure the mehndi was prepared well in advance. This was achieved by constantly nagging my Ammi and khalas. Mind you this was not the instant cone mehndi era, a lot of time and effort was put in preparing dry ...

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Diary of a frequent Indian ET blogs commenter

Dear Readers, The regulars here know me by my pseudonym ‘Nandita’. The head of the blogs desk has asked me to write a piece about my experiences of commenting on this page for the last couple of years. This is an attempt to enumerate the multiple reasons that compel me to visit The Express Tribune blogs on a regular basis. I started frequenting this site sometime in 2010. I had moved to a new city (yet again!) and I found myself in an unfamiliar environment with little to keep me engaged after office hours. I’d spend the evenings reading books or articles/blogs on the internet while ...

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Can I please please please blog on ET?

Call me a wannabe or a passionate writer who wants to break into a robust blogosphere sprawling across Pakistan; either way, I am shameless and relentless to the core. I will keep on coming back again and again, no matter how many times I get this message from the moderators: “Hi, Thank you for your interest in The Express Tribune. Having read your post, we feel as though it doesn’t quite fit our section. Thus, I regret to inform you that we will not be running this particular piece. Please write to us on a different topic. Thank you for your consideration. Kind ...

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‘How much did they pay you to defame Imran Khan and PTI?’

It seems The Express Tribune has done it again (see image above). Working on our Goebbels’ vendetta against all things Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaaf, we have now attacked PTI Chairman Imran Khan while he’s down (literally). The PTI Chairman injured his back just days before the elections. Can it get any more evil than asking our cartoonist Sabir Nazar to target an injured man, when all he wants to do is go see his children in the UK during the few weeks they get off from school? Who cares if there is wall-chalking up in NA-56 demanding to know where the man ...

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The hunt for Karachi’s constituency map

Maps are supposed to show you where to go. But what about the hunt for a map itself? When the icky subject of delimitation came up, our reporter came with the astounding information that constituencies had been messed with so badly in 2002 that in some instances disconnected chunks of Karachi were put down as one unit. I didn’t believe him. There was only one way to find out – look at the maps. Don’t get me wrong; I couldn’t care less about delimitation, which is a word that makes my brain freeze. But maps I like. I commissioned stories. But the text ...

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