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Public Opinion

Time for a change

The irony of our times, with identities swirling in orbits trying to relate to the instance — a trauma so convincing in itself, it impedes introspection — is to look at what might have shaped the present. Instead of asking ‘why’, the questions are more about ‘how’. And in the process, the words of His-Story are writing us rather than ...

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Female, divorced & Christian

Christian marriage is thought to be an eternal bond. However, this institution is buffeted with all kinds of demands in the modern world. The marriage vows declared together on your wedding day can either turn out to be a joy or a pain. What happens if you choose the wrong person or circumstances pin you up against a brick wall? The ...

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Upholding the Kashmir cause

Every year on February 5, we observe the Kashmir Solidarity Day with great zeal and fervour, showing Pakistan’s full support and unity with the people of Indian-occupied Kashmir and their ongoing freedom struggle while also paying homage to Kashmiri martyrs who lost their lives fighting for Kashmir’s freedom. For decades, however, we have been observing this annual occasion as a ...

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The loss of an unsung hero

Lyari is generally understood simplistically, through a limited set of cliches. Either people fear it as a den of crime and violence or they romanticise it by highlighting its love of football and boxing. Few people know much else about this part of Karachi. When I first began visiting Lyari two and half years ago, I too had a narrow ...

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Stop ignoring small-scale farmers

Although urbanisation is on the rise, around 75 per cent of the world’s poorest people still live in rural areas, and are involved in agricultural activities, which comprise the major source of their livelihoods. The need to pay more attention to small-scale farmers is thus evident. However, in the era of globalisation, contending with problems facing small-scale farmers across the ...

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ICC’s special amendments for World Cup 2015

The following is a press release from the International Cricket Council: Dubai, February 13, 2015. In light of the considerable efforts, including but not limited to bribery, blackmail and intimidation, expended during the reorganisation of the International Cricket Council (ICC) in 2014 and with a view to securing maximum mileage from the aforesaid initiatives, the Board of Control for Cricket ...

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Punjab’s energy problem

There is almost no solution to Punjab’s energy problem which does not depend on Sindh Chief Minister Qaim Ali Shah being driven out of office and being replaced by somebody who is at least vaguely competent. This is why, no matter how hard Finance Minister Ishaq Dar and Water and Power Minister Khawaja Asif try — and they are not ...

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Pakistan’s future — fraught with perilous possibilities

Nearly two months after the Peshawar attack, it is unclear if Pakistan’s direction has changed. The unprecedented grief and anger over the tragedy has now given way to business as usual. Bureaucrats undertaking the routine round-up exercises, platitudes by the politicians and the ‘firm’ image by the military leadership. Sections of civil society that defied the taboos of entering Islamabad’s ...

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Five Pakistani trends to watch in 2015

With most of our attention focused on breaking news and headlines of the day, sometimes we miss the trend lines in society shifting significantly. Here’s a list of five trend lines to watch in 2015. Firstly, Pakistan’s (informal) economy will boom: everyone and their mother-in-law are making the case for why Pakistan’s economy is on the brink of collapse and ...

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Banned and blocked… not!

Pakistan is becoming more Orwellian by the week. The ban on YouTube has now been announced as “indefinite” as the government has been unable to find a way to block blasphemous content. For me the ban was inconvenient for around 10 minutes — the time it took to find a free Virtual Private Network (VPN) that spoofs my IP address, ...

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