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The poison of corruption

Corruption is the biggest social issue in Pakistan nowadays. It is increasing day by day which is not good for the development of our country. It would be pertinent to say that our country may not be performing well in several fields but has progressed in corruption from the number 42 in 2009 to 34 in 2010. Billions of rupees are said to be wasted through corruption which severely restricts country’s economic growth. The Transparency International said that corruption was the root

Whodunit?

Some 9 years ago the world was stunned to read and hear the shocking news of the murder of Nepalese King Birendra and 8 other members of the royal family. The murderer was Crown Prince Dipendra who shot his parents, other close family members and then shot himself. He died after three days and the monarchy went to his uncle. At that time various conspiracy theories were related to the killing. The incident till today is considered mysterious.But from day one it was evident that there

Freedom of expression

Freedom of expression is a cornerstone of democratic rights and it is central of all societies in the world. Not just because this is vital to human creativity but it is also the only way we have of protecting our other rights by identifying and exposing violations of human rights. Freedom of expression is essential in enabling a democracy to work and for public participation in decision-making. Citizens cannot exercise their right to vote effectively or take part in public

Fly-on-the-wall policing

The police have been developing the habit of looking the other way whenever there is a law and order situation. This is especially true when the circumstances are political in nature. The recent clash in Gujrat between two rival political parties resulted in the blockage of G T Road and created a tense atmosphere. Though the police was reported to be at the scene during the entire episode, it stood on the sidelines as spectators. It was only after the incident that the people involved

A lack thereof

The law in order situation in most part of the country is suffering due to many reasons. A police officer was killed and another police officer sustained injuries when unidentified men opened fire at the police officers at Zarghoonabad area, Quetta. The armed men opened gunshots at them when they tried to stop and interrogate them finding their movements as suspicious.The police officers are helpless in those areas where the criminals are better equipped than the police officers are.

Kind hearted marines?

The front page of the Times of 17 January shows a marine carrying a heavily bandaged Afghan child severely wounded due to coalition forces air strike in Afghanistan. All those watching the picture might erroneously believe the US-led coalition troops in Afghanistan are there to help the Afghan people, to introduce democracy and to emancipate Afghan women.
Nothing could be farther from truth. A cartoon circulated on the internet recently explains a lot. Uncle Sam sits wearing his

The disguise of nationalism

Recently the BJP has announced to launch ‘Tiranga Yatra’ on republic day, an Indian flag hoisting movement in occupied Kashmir in the name of nationalism. Apparently, the motive of the exercise is to build up political pressure on Congress.
Recent months have witnessed 112 innocent Kashmiris, mostly teenagers, being added to the total of 93,544 extra judicial killings. BJP’s mission will not only boost the Kashmiris’ struggle for self determination. It also may have implications

Conspiracy theories

This is with reference to the sad murder of the parents of Honourable Supreme Court Justice Javed Iqbal. Though the tragic incident was shocking for the Pakistani nation, it is pathetic that without any investigation or solid probe, some of our leaders and journalists were speculating that state institutes could be involved in such a brutal murder.
Asma Jehangir is President of SCBA and is a known human rights activist but this is not the first time the lady gave a statement

Times are bad

Bad times can be pretty adhesive in nature. Wars, most famously, are said to bring nations together, temporarily cementing the cracks, brushing over the perpetual faultlines. Other calamities, like economic meltdown, for instance, can be pretty divisive, with the opposition parties milking all of the abundant opportunities for scoring points. This usually yields a government unable to enforce unpopular yet necessary steps to help rectify the economy. In evolved democracies, however,

Flight of death

After the discovery of Qasim Siddique’s school bag, allegedly from the runway of Allama Iqbal Airport, it would no more be possible to hush up the death of the school boy who reportedly died after falling from a plane flying from Lahore to Dubai. While circumstantial evidence had pointed to the fall from the plane being the cause of death, airport authorities continued to remain in a state of denial all along. Efforts were in fact made to prove that the boy might have been murdered


Nazir Naji

Politics and religion

Nowhere in the Islamic world has Islam been instrumentalised for the sake of political ends and gains, like the way it has been in Pakistan. This is because everybody has the freedom to interpret and apply Islam as they want here. All those people who declared Salmaan Taseer as ‘liable to be murdered’ in their fatwas were not even capable of issuing fatwas, according to an interview by Allama Ashrafi on television. The lay Muslim is not even informed of whose fatwa they should adhere


Kuldip Nayar

Liberal or not?

Pakistan is not a failed but a derailed state. Growing religious fundamentalism has mutilated its weak democratic polity. And the military has stretched itself to such an extent that it occupies today the space that rightly belongs to the people in a free society. The many-year long US-backed war in Afghanistan and its border areas against the Taliban is not a solution to Pakistan’s problems but it adds to them. Islamabad is itself mixed up with those forces which strengthen the


Hassaan Ghazali

Arctic Antics

The latest news from the North Pole is that Santa has decided to trade in his red costume and sleigh for a yellow hazmat suit and wrench. A career switch is certainly imminent if the oil giant BP and Russia’s Rosneft move into the neighbourhood to get their oil fix. As announced last week, such strategic alliances to exploit untapped natural resources sent energy markets soaring, but the truth is that this odd couple’s hunt for hydrocarbons on top of the world does not bode well for


Dr Faisal Bari

Engaging education

Education, irrespective of the content, has to engage a child, make him/her interested, and give something that he/she can apply and utilise to make sense of his/her world. Children are not empty vessels that can be filled with all sorts of things irrespective of their attitude to learning and irrespective of the use to which this knowledge can be put to.
Teachers have a very difficult job. They have a syllabus and a work plan to go through but in order to deliver they have to

What Pakistan needs

At present Pakistan is dominated by intolerance, violence, injustice and many forms of extremism. How long the country can survive with such pathetic conditions? When fundamentalists, obscurantists, extremists, and terrorists have made it their goal to spread hatred and impose their agenda by force, there is almost no chance to have democracy and equal rights for all the public. These self-righteous people have penetrated in every institution of the country. Religious radicalisation

Uncertainty in Pakistan cricket

Gone are the days when cricket was considered as a sacred sport and a game of passion. It is quite shocking for a cricket lover now to find it as a money-making machine nowadays. Apart from the hard fact that corruption prevails everywhere, cricket is a religion for the sport lovers and cricketers are supposed to be the cricketing prophets so they are bound to protect the spirit of cricket by hooks or by crooks.
When it comes to Pakistan cricket, our heroes have always been

Neutral role of police

Where everybody is discussing the possibilities to establish the rule of law in the country, it is pertinent to review the role of police in this matter.
Police being the primary law enforcement agency can actually make the much needed difference in this regard. It’s not only the city of Karachi that is facing a serious threat from the miscreants but all the other important cities also remain under the constant fear of terrorist attacks and other issues. Police has certainly

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