Archive for May, 2006

Who was Aamir Cheema?

Who was Aamir Cheema? A Hero, A Shaheed or an Unfortunate Misguided Soul?

Aamir Cheema was a student in Germany. Apparently he went to assassinate the editor of Die Welt newspaper for publishing the infamous cartoons. Security arrested him in the lobby of the building and he was allegedly carrying a knife and told the police that he was going to kill the editor. He was arrested by the police. But later according to the German authorities he committed suicide while in prison. According to German authorities an autopsy was performed in the presence of two Pakistani FIA officials. The autopsy showed that there were no marks indicating physical violence.

Read: Herald Tribune [This is a biased report from International Herald Tribune]
Read: Asia Media @ UCLA

Did he attack, or did he only intend to attack? Or did he tell that to the security guards in the lobby, which means that he was really pissed off (that is, temporarily insane). Either way, he was not a murderer or an assassin, or a terrorist for that matter. He was just a very pissed off and stressed out young man. Now why would he commit suicide? This is again not clear. Did the Pakistani Ambassador to Germany meet this kid in the prison? Forget the Ambassador, did anyone from the Pakistani Embassy go and talk to him while he was in custody? Was an attorney for his defense arranged? Was the Pakistani Embassy notified by the German police?
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Driving scene in Lahore

The word is out and it is saying that Lahore has become one of the most popular tourist destinations in Asia. Known for its beautiful gardens, exquisite fountains, delicious cuisines, and rich heritage of architecture, art and music, Lahore is once again reinventing itself. This time it is changing into a crowded habitat. This second largest city of Pakistan and fourteenth largest city in the world has unique driving habits.

Few drivers have this well-known style: they will always drives at a speed less than 40 kilometres per hour along the middle of recently beautified, recently widened Lahore roads, and forget the distinctly marked speed lanes. They drive without looking left or right as if mesmerized by the taillights or what ever is written on the back screens of the vehicles they are following closely. Surely they feel safest but what happens when one drives slowly in fast lane? The fast lanes remain always clogged, and the only way to escape a ‘fast lane blockade’ with confidence is to drive fast in slow lane, which happens to be empty: violating universal traffic rules, negating right of way even to the cyclists and pedestrians and or causing accidents. This is one of the worst driving habits.
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This is Pakistan – Slide Show

Pakistan Slide Show

Via Thatta Kedona

The infidel Market Segment perhaps

Now I claim to understand marketing. Some of it at least! I claim to understand, if not implement, the ‘art’ and science of serving a particular market, the positioning of your product or service, and coming up with a new ‘brand’ of the same product for different market segments. For example, a simple detergent can have as many as seven different brand, each with a unique selling proposition, targetted at different market segments such as a market of “dirt concious people” or affluent people or not-so-affluent people etc etc. I have oversimplified it, I know, but stay with me on this because the crap has yet to hit the fan…

I just read an editorial on Daily Times on thier website (LINK to the editorial).
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things that never change # 342: crank calls

Things that will never change in Pakistan, no matter which city you live in: the post-12 am crank calls. You pick up the receiver, say a random hello. The voice at the other end sounds oily, and you try to place it in vain as he breathes a “heaylo”. You ask “aap ko kiss say baat karnee hai?” (“Who do you wish to speak to?”), and get the one reply you’ve been dreading: “aap say” (“with you!”) The introduction of CLI has drastically decreased the number of crank calls that you get on your landline atleast, but now there’s a more harassing, stubborn breed of people hell-bent on talking to you at ungodly hours of the night, even on cellphones where you can easily track them down. I guess the latter’s not a threat as such for them anymore.

Everyone has their own way of dealing with the particular string of calls that follow the inevitable first hanging up. What’s yours?

US Bombing in Waziristaan – I Protest!

Note: This is a spontaneous post and inspired by Ayesha Alam’s Coffee Party that I was listening to this morning on my way to office.

I am sure most of you must have heard about the sad news of 3 people killed and 8 missing in US bombing in Waziristaan yesterday. This has been happening for a long time and it seems government cannot do anything to stop it. We don’t even protest anymore which I think is the worst attitude a nation can have. Its like US are a God and can do whatever? I don’t think so!

One thing is for sure, government is NOT going to do anything and they will keep on doing whatever they are ordered. Sometimes I feel that people of Pakistan should ask US government to bear the expanses of our military and I am sure our tax can be used for a lot better options like health and education. Yeah, why not? After all, they do whatever is ordered, cannot protect our borders and anyone can come in and kill innocent people anytime. Just a thought.

There was another news I saw on Geo last night where a clown was announcing 5 caror for people who have died in Tribal Areas. No apology, no nothing and they called it collateral damage. How much money a human life worth? And you call it collateral damage? Bloody #$%$@!#!

So what can we do, if anything? You can ignore one voice, a hundred or even a thousand. But you cannot ignore a million united voices. Can you? So I will not sit back and hota hai yaar hum kia kar sakte hein. The least I can do is record my protest against my fellow countrymen for not raising their voice collectively, our rulers for being puppets and the US government for their double standards and killing innocent people in the name of war on terror. Yes sir, I Protest. How about you?

Aaandheee!

Yesterday night, Lahore was gripped by a ferocious dust-storm. The wind blew at abnormal speeds in parts of the city, uprooting some trees & utility supply poles. The storm continued for a well 4-5 hours. Surprisingly, my electricity, telephones, & cable weren’t interrupted for a minute…

As a result of last night’s wind blows, today, we have a fresh and surprising change in weather. From yesterday’s 44 degree celcius, sun seems to be less harsh today as relatively cool breeze brushes the faces.

I hope it remains this way for a couple of days as there is no avoiding the upcoming boiling point, pressure cooker months. Aur haan, we shouldn’t forget, ‘abhi to garmion ka aaghaz hai; aage aage daikhiyay hota hai kya’.

Legendary Indian composer Naushad dies

naushad2.jpg

One of Sub continent’s legendary music composers, Naushad Ali expired at the age of 86. The death was caused by a heart attack at a Mumbai hospital today.

Since he started his career in the 1930s, Naushad has been responsible of composing music for some of the greatest Bollywood movies that include Mughal-e-Azam, Pakeezah, Mother India and the recently released Taj Mahal.

He is also said to have introduced Lata Mangeshkar by providing her her first break. Lata paid her tributes to the legend as follows:

“With his death, a generation of music composers has ended. The phase of Indian classical music that existed in our films has ended.”

To know more about Naushad’s life & work, visit this webpage.

Pay me or I’ll scratch

Beggars of Lahore continue to exploit people’s sympathies towards the needy.

First, it was simple ask-for-money that then converted to begging with fake prescriptions and certificates for ‘proof’. And now, as this suggestion story by Detox reveals, begging is taking a scary, threatening turn…

“Pretending to be physically or mentally challenged doesn’t work well for the city’s beggars any more and many of them are resorting to a rather outrageous technique – threatening people, especially women, of scratching their cars or injuring themselves with safety razor blades.

One such incident took place in front of an ice cream parlour on The Mall on Saturday evening, when a teenaged boy asked two girls for money. When they refused, he took out a blade from his mouth, threatening them to scratch their car if they did not give him money. The girls were scared but refused to give him money. The boy then threatened them to hurt himself with the blade and scream that they had injured him if they did not give him money. When the girls refused, the boy began to slit his arm with the blade. The girls got scared, gave him money and hurried off, while the boy counted his income, which was Rs 450, and showed it to another beggar telling him that was the way to earn money.”

Full Story: Dailytimes

Story Suggestion by Detox
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Guess the place # 10

guess10.jpg

Hmmmmmmmm! Anyone??

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