Remembering 2014
Jan03

Remembering 2014

Alas 2014 comes to an end and with it we bury everything we’ve been through in the past year, under the rug. As 2015 begins we look forward to new beginnings, new opportunities, possibilities and some of us, to more disappointments. Every year we look forward to New Year as a second chance at life but why is it so? Why do we wait for a “New Year” for a new beginning and why is it that we push last year’s mess under the rug, out of sight? 2014 may have ended but its ramifications remain. 2015 may have begun but we’re still the same. Let’s take a look back at what 2014 had in store for Pakistan. January 1 A bomb blasted on the Qambrani road in Akhtarabad, Quetta near a bus, which was carrying at least 50 pilgrims from Iran to Pakistan. Police confirmed that three of the passengers were killed and at least twenty-four injured. January 6 A bomb detonated in a tribal elder’s home in Khyber Agency, killing 10 people and injuring another 9. January 9 14-year-old Aitizaz Hassan in northern Pakistan was killed stopping a suicide bomber at the main gate of his school but saved the lives of all of his schoolmates gathered for their morning assembly. The Sunni group Lashkar-e-Jhangvi claimed responsibility for the attack   Chaudhry Aslam Khan, police chief and SSP of the Crime Investigation Department in Sindh Police, was killed in a bomb blast March 31 Musharraf was charged in treason case April 8 Blast struck Pakistan market April 19 Hamid Mir was wounded in a gun attack May 7 Joel Cox (FBI agent) was arrested with 15 9mm bullets, three small knives and a     wrench after he attempted to board a domestic flight between Karachi and Islamabad   Malala pled over Nigerian schoolgirls May 27 30-year old Farzana Bibi was been stoned to death by her relatives outside Lahore High Court for marrying against their wishes June 3 MQM leader Altaf Hussain was held in London June 6 Altaf Hussain was released by police June 8 Gunmen attacked Karachi international Airport, killing at least 10 people June 9 Pakistani Taliban claim responsibility behind the airport attack Karachi airport reopens after raid June 13 6.0 earthquake hit northwest Pakistan June 14 Airstrikes killed as many as 100 militants in Pakistan June 15 Operation Zarb-e-Azb is launched by PAF against various militant groups, including the Tehrik-i-Taliban Pakistan (TTP), Lashkar-e-Jhangvi, Jundallah, al-Qaeda, the East Turkestan Islamic Movement (ETIM), the Islamic Movement of Uzbekistan (IMU) and the Haqqani network. June 17 The Model Town clash ensued between the Punjab Police and Pakistan...

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Bachpan Ka December- A Review
Dec05

Bachpan Ka December- A Review

I have come to a conclusion. While English novels give a broader view into life, and (I must confess) make you an attractive nerd, the impact of lessons in Urdu novels is more deeply felt. Its like if your mom gave you a lifelong advice in English, it wouldn’t be as effective as in Urdu. Sarcasms are sharper and humor is more ridiculous. Hence everything that needs to be felt is more penetrating and decent in our native dialect. Sticking to the theme of this Blog of promoting what belongs to Pakistan, I decided to review a novel that I began reading in a hospital lounge with utter disinterest but by the time I finished it, a pile of unattended tasks awaited me. Never misconstrue seemingly odd books in a doctor’s waiting lounge. I must have read around 5 pages but they had me grasped so strongly that on my way back after the appointment, I stopped by a book store and bought it. Bachpan Ka December by Hashim Nadeem sets the story in Quetta where Decembers were thought to be very beautiful once upon a time, with conifers covered in snow and moonlight peaking through the clear frosted ice. The impersonal aspect of the book covers late 70’s through a little boys point of view and then late 80’s through a mature man’s. Its about Ebad, a kid who belongs to a mediocre background, his best friend “Raja” who was always thought to be a bad influence to him (we all have that one best friend who our parents don’t approve of) and “Wajjo” a crush bound to stay a crush forever. The writer’s choice of words is so illustrative that (if I was a painter) I could have painted down every page and If a drama is made on it, there would have been less input at recreating scenes from the book. The word-sketch is so definite and clear. Unlike most romantic novels, this one is pretty humorous. I was amazed to see how the speaker connected so well with his childhood memories and remembered every meticulous detail of his perception. There are immature sarcasms which make you laugh spontaneously over Addi’s innocence. The book talks about parental control, family politics and nosy neighbors. It then slowly evolves to the point where Addi wants to cling purposely to these irritating things, but finally its time for him to grow up and go to a cadet college. That’s where the second phase of his life starts. He shares with readers the reminiscence of this crucial chapter of his life. From the discouraging behavior of seniors to that one...

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Pakistan – Your Time is Here
Nov14

Pakistan – Your Time is Here

The time has arrived, the days of tribulations are over, and the darkest part of night is outweighed by the glory of the rising sun; better late than never, because we have suffered enough. The land of pure; the land our forefathers had to fight for & give away countless sacrifices in doing so , was over run ( for 68 years) by ignorance, injustice, intolerance & hatred. But, the past has left us, for now time has come not only to change ourselves, but to change the world we live in. ‘Change’; an enormous word as it seem but viewing the complexity of present national scenario, there is yet another dimension to all this prospective problem, the change in attitude of our approach and our tactics to view a problem all have resulted into some what, a phenomenon that if given importance will nullify the basic complications existing in our society & the chain of reactions that will spring up after such multi-dimensional methodology will further develop our capabilities as a nation.  In my view, when history turns into your favor, notions form on a level that once was certainly not thought of, when people wake up from long lasted virtual drowsiness & an unavoidable change lies in front of us than at that point there come some responsibilities on our part. We as a nation must decide the kind of transformation we want, we have to give direction to this silent movement, we have to decide; if we want this movement to yield something, if we want to have a greater impact of all this in our lives, in our cities, in our country as a whole then, we must not relate this change with anything negative and in my view, any sort of change is not the sole effort of any single person. We have seen in past, behind every successful nation, there are years and years of struggle and hardships, no doubt, big and fabulous names glow in the book of history, but those names are remembered because of their efforts and a league of men that struggled with them, but weren’t reminisced. What we have to do is to wipe away the individual centered approach and look in a broader perspective giving due status to all those who deserved. This approach of ours, will not only open new and previously unexplored horizons for us but it’s result would in a long term, have an everlasting effect on us as a society. Allama Iqbal’s dream, Quaid’s hard work, and countless sacrifices must be kept in mind. It’s time; not for a steady walk but to...

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Inspiration
Oct18

Inspiration

Let’s just sit back and think about ourselves for a while. We’re all unique personalities and special in our own way. We contribute to this society with our good and bad demeanors. We spend our lives doing whatever gets us going because that is just how we function. We see, we feel, we hear, we touch the world around us. So what was it that made us who we are? That gets us through the day and stimulates our senses? I, for one, would like to believe its inspiration. Inspiration being the act or power of exercising an elevating or stimulating influence upon the intellect or emotions. Think about it! We’ve experienced so much in our lives. We’ve met different people, we’ve seen different people. We’ve been to places. We’ve had our moments both good and bad ones. The accumulative result of all these wonderful things happening around us have actually inspired a personality to develop-that is us! Our surroundings have influenced our being and provide us with inspiration in every walk of our lives. Every individual has his own inspiration. For some it’s a person. One’s parents, teachers, friends or famous personalities. While others have themselves to serve as role models with all the exposure they’ve received of the world and its dwellings. It’s how we take in to something we feel so close, is what shapes the way we lead our lives. Here a chain reaction starts. What inspires us makes us who we are and we ourselves serve as an inspiration for those around us. We in turn influence their lives and on it goes. One being inspires another. Now I’ll let you ponder as to whether you’re a good inspiration or a bad one. I suppose this one little statement might inspire a sense of responsibility among us because one way or another we’re all role models and it’ll be a great help if we conduct ourselves with this in...

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The Malala Conundrum

It was two years ago, on the 9th of this month that Malala Yousafzai was shot by a gunman from the Taliban. Malala survived the ordeal and since then her rise to global prominence and fame has been nothing short of meteoric and has culminated into her being awarded half of a Nobel Peace Prize on 10th October, 2014. The Nobel Peace Prize is just one of the many feathers that Malala has added to her cap since 2012. She has been the recipient of the Sakharov Prize and honorary degrees from Universities such as the University of Edinburgh and University of King’s College. She is perhaps the youngest person to address a UN assembly. The list of her accomplishments is long and diverse. It shows that Malala has been accepted by a large part of the world as an icon of peace and the struggle for the right of humans, particularly women and children, to education. Pakistan hasn’t readily or wholly accepted Malala as such because there are mixed views among the Pakistanis about her story and her struggle.   How many can say that they have rubbed shoulders with UN General Secretary Ban Ki Moon or addressed a UN youth assembly. Malala’s confidence and accomplishments are indeed undeniable. Pakistan has been on the verge of economic, social and political instability for quite some time now. The conditions of Pakistan are such that a large section of its citizens suffer from trust issues. They think about the negative aspects of people and situations before the positive ones. The negatives are usually enough to deter them from even thinking about the positives. Malala’s story has been questioned by many people with this mindset. Some say that Malala’s story is fabricated and unverifiable (at least accurately) and it seems that her fame has been manufactured to serve a dark purpose. Multiple conspiracy theories with regard to the attack on Malala exist. The names of intelligence agencies such as CIA along with terrorist organizations as well as enemies of Pakistan have been added to the mix. Malala’s family is accused of being fame and money hungry and the activities of Malala’s father in promoting her daughter or her cause have not helped in dispelling such a notion. The western world is accused of using Malala to justify their war crimes (drone strikes and what not) in Muslim countries and promoting a bad image of the religion of Islam, a religion that Malala herself follows. Some people question how a 12 year old was able to write about issues which kids of similar ages and coming from similar conditions, don’t have a...

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Just Rants
Aug18

Just Rants

I started this article off as “Rants of a Medical Student” but then I’d still be ranting even if I were studying Art and Craft (which I kind of want to) so “Just Rants” it is! Oh and by the way I have exams coming up and the fact that I’m still writing this shows how dedicated the bloggers at Heal Pakistan truly are and not that the editors threatened to let us off the hook if we didn’t come up with anything soon =P So back to rants. Rant# 1 What am I doing with my life?! No seriously. We’ve all had that question stuck in our mind since high school. For the lucky ones, their future paths are already clear and they know exactly what they want to achieve. However for us “cool” and confused one’s the path isn’t that clear. In fact it’s rugged, muddy and torn with pit holes! We start with one thing and quickly move on to another one. I guess we’re just bored. Rant# 2 Exams! Why you no get hit by a train and die?!! We want straight A’s and we want them now but we don’t want to study. I mean, really, study? Us? Nice joke. All those years in school everyone was like “just get into college and then you can do whatever you want.” I think what they really meant was “just get into college, go through hell and then you can do whatever you want.” Here’s one I came across: “That moment of your pathetic medicine life when, even after your every effort, the day before stupid send up exam you Just GIVE UP Since no matter what, there is no freaking way to complete Anatomy !!” Rant# 3 Weight Gain! For us chocoholics, unwilling to exercise or go on a diet….enough said. Rant# 4 Nobody understands me :'( For all those lost souls out there, craving for attention and real friends who will stay with them through all thick and thin….don’t do drugs and you’ll be fine. Rant# 5 Bale for Batman! Down with Ben Affleck!   So in the end life is unfair, exams are still there, Bale is hot and fat is not....

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