Comment articles

Corruption bites

The Prime Minister of Pakistan must immediately dismiss and order the arrest of Minister and Secretary Religious Affairs for all the hardships (not even water and tents are available and Hajis are forced live on roads) being faced by Pakistani Hajis in Saudi Arabia and for bringing disrepute to the name of the country.
Actually, the government high ups always challenge to prove any case of corruption, knowing fully well that the corrupt never leave any receipt as its proof.

Disease control

The news report that several flood-hit children have died is indeed disheartening. There was always a danger as to the spread of some epidemic or even an endemic in the areas. That the government did not take any preventive measures is something that cannot be justified by any means.
These people are our brothers. They have the same rights on the resources of the land as much we have or the nation’s leaders have. They must be protected from such diseases and should be provided

Blasphemy, think again

This is in reference to the article published by your newspaper on Monday 15 November 2010, titled ‘Us and Them’ by Waqqas Mir. I totally agree with the writer’s views on the issue of blasphemy and xenophobia.
The laws of the land on blasphemy seem highly prejudiced and unjust. They do not conform to the laws of the same nature at the international level. They can be manipulated highly and they can be targeted at a person specifically. To add insult to the injury is the fact that

Books are best friends

The column published by the Pakistan Today on November 15th on the delicate yet important issue of book reading written by Dr Mubarak Ali gives deep insight as to how many kinds of readers are there in our society and why we are not inclined to read books anymore. The writer nailed it when he said that the commercialisation of literature has forced the good writers to stay away from publishing books.
I would like to add that the internet and cell phones have also made a huge

Long live, democracy!

The release of Aung San Suu Kyi is great news for the entire world. She represents the peaceful, though not so peaceful sometimes, struggle against tyranny and military dictatorships. She is the sign of courage, hope, struggle and perseverance.
She has a great importance for Pakistan as her life struggle resembles to that of the former prime minister of Pakistan, Benazir Bhutto. Both were put to jail, persecuted and kept under house arrest. Both fought their peaceful political


Crooks or victims?

Today’s headline reads that Pakistan has asked donors to write off $50 billion plus worth of loans. Last week’s headline was that the Supreme Court thinks all people who have had loans written off are crooks. Does that make us a nation of crooks? Or does that mean the Supreme Court is barking up the wrong tree?
To understand the Supreme Court’s apparent position regarding loan write-offs, one needs to go back in history. In 1974, the government of Zulfikar Ali Bhutto nationalised


Syed Hassan Belal Zaidi

General Ignorance

Disclaimer: This article is not anti-Pakistan. It is anti-Pakistani. There is a difference. Also, the writer may have fabricated evevnts to suit his narrative and the reader is warned not to quote this article as a reliable source for information of any kind.
For the last few centuries, the people of the subcontinent have been ruled by an interesting bunch of people. After the sun set on the Mughal empire, the Dutch, British and Portuguese staked their claims in various parts at


A fairy tale journey!

The Sixteenth Asian Games officially known as the XVI Asiad opened in China’s southern city of Guangzhou on November 12 with spectacular ceremonies marking the occasion. Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao inaugurated the Games amidst a colourful display of fireworks. Unlike all previous opening ceremonies, the 2010 Asiad opening ceremony was held not in a stadium but at an open venue in Haixinsha Island on the legendry Pearl River.
The water-themed fantasy-opening was marked by a little

Musharraf’s defenders

Coming out of the virtual world of the Facebook, Musharraf finds himself abandoned by former colleagues, both civilian and military, while his adversaries are anxiously waiting for his arrival to drag him to the courts. Like a scared person preparing himself to face a hostile situation Musharraf continues to repeat “I am determined to go back to Pakistan” almost on a daily basis without moving a step towards the direction. Getting frustrated with his own handiwork, called the PML(Q)

A house in disarray

Biases and knee-jerk responses are known to tear down the wall of any reasonable argument. But not without a measure of damage. The standard quote of both opposition and treasury members on the floods is the US is giving a disproportionately low amount of aid in the face of one of the worst natural disasters that Pakistan has faced in its history. Ditto for analysts, columnists and TV anchors. But it sure must rankle when the Americans respond by asking a simple question: why should


M J Akbar

Traders, not partners

How many words will India get in Barack Obama’s autobiography, Faith, Hope and Miscarriage, due in 2013?
Going by the law of proportions, it should be between 100 to 104 if the complete book is around 200,000 words, roughly the length expected in a multi-million dollar advance. According to a fine story by my friend K.P. Nayar in the Telegraph, George Bush, Dr Manmohan Singh’s “best friend”, devoted exactly 208 words out of 195,456 to India in his memoir Decision Points. “Even

The common man

This letter is with reference to the column “A sugary mess”. I think the author makes a very good point that it is the nameless, faceless ‘common man’ who is going to suffer the most due to the economic mess that the government has created. The unprecedented price hike in food items is going to hit the middle classes and lower classes really hard. The inequity of the current government’s proposed reforms infuriates me to no end as they are serving to widen the rich-poor gap by leaps

Bloody face of revenge

The recent bloody attack by terrorists in Karachi sends a stark message that the attackers do not believe in the PPP slogan i.e. democracy is the best revenge. Rather they believe in tit for tat. The scores of drone attacks in tribal areas of Pakistan that result in the deaths of not only targeted men but also innocent women and children in large numbers have incited the wrath of terrorists to create mini earthquakes of 1.3 richter scale by bombs of 1000 Kg detonated on the surface of

Reform yourself, not GST!

It is the government that needs to be reformed first. It ought to decimate corruption, mis-governance, incompetence, grandiosity, grandeur, billion of dollars leakages within its ranks from top slot to the bottom most and its putrefied coalition mafia of opportunists, target killers, bathkhors, enemies of seventeen crore poor, anti Kalabagh Dam, pro IPPs, Rental units, promoting joint clout of PPP-, MQM, ANP, MMA.
They must pay back to the nation hundred of billion dollars

The sacrifice of sanitation

Eid-ul-Azha is coming and this means that every city in the country is going to turn into a slaughterhouse with animal parts gracing every corner of every street and the faithful literally painting the town red.
This animal sacrifice is indeed a Muslim ritual which should be observed but the same code that compels us to make this sacrifice also makes the exhortation of cleanliness and being a good citizen. It is each individual’s responsibility to dispose off the waste of their

Pakistan under siege

The terrorist attack on Karachi is condemnable and we must protest against it vehemently. Our nation was very slow to wake up to the realisation that the tribal areas are not that far from what we consider ‘mainstream’ Pakistan and urban Pakistan cannot live in its bubble while KP and FATA suffer from the ignominious activities of the terrorists. These networks are encroaching further into Pakistan and their reach is ever-expansive. Uprooting terrorism not only requires operations in


M J Akbar

Traders, not partners

How many words will India get in Barack Obama’s autobiography, Faith, Hope and Miscarriage, due in 2013?
Going by the law of proportions, it should be between 100 to 104 if the complete book is around 200,000 words, roughly the length expected in a multi-million dollar advance. According to a fine story by my friend K.P. Nayar in the Telegraph, George Bush, Dr Manmohan Singh’s “best friend”, devoted exactly 208 words out of 195,456 to India in his memoir Decision Points. “Even

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