Credits for these pictures go to Irtiza Bokharee.
Credits for these pictures go to Irtiza Bokharee.
Its funny how sometimes we personify inanimate objects. Giving them human expressions and making them more life like. I happened to make the ‘scary’ faced fruit and from there it just spiraled on. Inspired by youtube’s famous ‘Kid President’, here’s a little video for the downcast – to, hopefully, bring a smile to your face.
For those of you who do not speak Urdu, “akela” is a pun. We call banana in Urdu “kela” whereas “akela” means “alone”.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=l-gQLqv9f4o – ‘A Pep Talk from Kid President’
Photo courtesy Sanwal Tariq (Facebook)
The entire world watches on and waits with bated breath for the results of ANTM (Afghanistan’s next top man) and three main contenders have emerged as the leading candidates in what is to be Afghanistan’s first democratic transition. We have the people’s champion, Abdullah Abdullah, “with a name so nice, you have to say it twice”. Contesting against him is the good doctor Ashraf Ghani, who will seemingly use debate and logical arguments to thwart the Taliban (we all know how well that works). And the third horse is the one being backed by the outgoing president, the ‘king’s man’, Mr Zalimai Rasoul.
Our people’s champion is a well-known politician, who is well received by the Afghani public, judging from the 31% of the votes he got in the presidential elections of 2009. While he is experienced in international diplomacy, and as Foreign Minister was responsible for broadening ties with the global community, his plans to tackle terrorism and fix the security situation in the country are still a mystery. He has advised the Taliban to change their ways if they are to be brought into the fold of the rest of society through dialogue, which is like telling a dog to stop using its nose to formulate likes and dislikes. His election campaign is centered around putting the lid on corruption in the country.
The doctor is an academic and an intellectual, and is famous for his economic acumen alongside his self-imposed exile during the Taliban years. Believed to be temperamental and on occasion, volatile, it remains to be seen whether he is as inconsistent as his potential predecessor Karzai. For the good of Afghanistan and the world at large, it is hoped that he is not.
The last frontrunner, is our king’s man and is seemingly experienced in issues of national security. Whether he manages to break free from the yoke of the old government and all of its failings still remains to be seen.
It must not be forgotten that amid all this, the BSA hangs in the balance, and the next President will decide whether US troops are to remain in Afghanistan beyond 2014. Whichever candidate is selected, it is imperative that Afghanistan is not left on its own with untrained security forces to fight the battle-hardened Taliban. But with the way things stand, one man’s decision will decide the outcome of the drawn-out war on terror, and we can only hope that Afghanistan chooses the right man for the job.
rippling as the wind blows,
a mirrored light.
As the gentle breeze caresses your flushed cheeks,
a warmth emanates from the core of your bosom,
or the fluffy skies.
Good morning dear, sweet sparrow,
welcome baby leaves,
and a Hello to you,
the First of March.
As the senior batch is all set to graduate, they spent their last days on campus with frivolous activities and joyous memories. On the 4th to the 6th of April, seniors celebrated Daaku Day, Yo Day and Paindoo Day, respectively.
On ‘Daaku Day’, while some had more fun extorting money out of juniors, others just resorted to giving them hugs to compensate for the hell they have in store for them:
While Daaku Day was a big success in terms of the dakaitis and the fun that followed it, the LSE admin tried its’ hardest to kill our buzz on Paindoo Day. What they didn’t realize was that 4 years in Lahore School of Economics taught us something– Never Give Up. Well, that’s not what it really taught us, but lets go with that for now.
As Daaku Day clashed with a Social Science Conference held at the Lahore School, students decided to very naively mistake the guests at the conference for instructors, and decided to wring some greens out of them too. To which the guests asked in horror, “Yay kala kurtay aap keh school ka uniform hai?”
Apparently, the admin wasn’t very pleased with this debacle, and decided to call off Paindoo day, as a frantic Mr.S was seen chasing dhoti walas and parandha girls around the campus, and kicking them out. ‘Perseverance commands success they say’; The students gathered in the parking lot with their dholkis, and their dulhas, and did a bhangra or two before they proceeded to the park behind Jalal Sons. Bystanders watched in awe as the ‘Paindoo’ crowd carried multiple dulhaas to the park, and danced like it was nobodys business.
Paindoo Day proved as a unifying force for the senior batch at LSE. It was filled with an aura of ‘Yay hamara haq hai’, ‘Hum tow dheet hain’, ‘Jao kaam karo apna’ and other shenanigans; It felt good to be united under the same banner for such a…cause (if you can call it that).
Yo Day was a rather mellow one as compared to the rest, as people didn’t quite understand what the difference was between how they dressed up on a normal day for LSE, and the occasion that was ahead of them. Nonetheless, they tried:
People of LSE, you will be missed!
Another temple was burned down, this time in Larkana, by a mob that lost control over yet another fake blasphemy charge against a Hindu. Imagine being constantly scared and feeling vulnerable and alien in your own country, in a sea of people that have nothing but disdain for what you stand for. Imagine an eid, or any other day of festivity where you cannot celebrate for fear of being attacked by an ignorant mob over some trumped up charges that have nothing to do with you. This is how the religious minorities in Pakistan feel on a daily basis. The blasphemy laws are to blame once more, being used for all the wrong reasons to take advantage of the inferior status ascribed to being part of a religious minority.
How is an organized mob created anyway? In a mob, there is no responsibility, no reprisal for any atrocities committed. There are no faces. There is bravery in numbers. Pitchforks and fire is the only image that comes to mind. The mob does not need facts, only allegations. The mob functions on the basis of outlining an ‘us’ with an opposing ‘them’. Those that are left out are easier to dehumanize and subsequently attack, if needed.
The biggest problem with any democracy is that it can potentially establish a tyranny of the majority and oppress those that do not identify themselves with the biggest group. Our country though divided along many lines, still calls itself an Islamic nation. Everybody else, those that have different beliefs and even those who are perceived as deviating from the ‘norms’ (what these are is debatable) are second-class citizens. This is not the first incident, and nor will it be the last. When minorities are left completely unprotected by the government, the people are free to exploit them in any way they see fit.
The only way Pakistan can begin to improve the status of minorities is through repealing a law designed to oppress the freedom of expression. Can a law really stop people from committing blasphemy? There is no real way to assess when blasphemy has been committed. And a mob can never pronounce judgments, let alone on something this subjective. All religions inherently contradict each other. Those that believe that their religion is the one true religion should be secure in their own knowledge and should attempt to rise above anything they perceive as insulting. We are no longer in the dark ages, and a law made to facilitate elaborate witch hunts has no place in the modern world.
A continuation of the wonderful pictures taken by Azal Zahir!
This gallery contains 4 photos.
Originally posted on Right to Ricochet:
Every year my best friend from USA visits me (more like surprises me) and together we explore the food scene in Lahore and the test the limits of our appetites. Saharish and I share a love for all things food and we spend her entire vacation in Pakistan gorging…
Is it like when winter wind blows?
No matter now for no one knows
My eyes dart from darkness to darkness
In my trembling body, my fright shows
I hear voices, echoing screams
And something white, a light it seems
Fluttering wings I vaguely see
Like those I remember from the first of my dreams
It is time to leave this cave of darkness
To a place where nothing dwells but lightness
I am no longer what I knew myself to be
Spirit of the heavens; my new identity