Dr Ruth Pfau – The Leper Healer With A Heart Of Gold

Painting Souls

IMG_9213Her childhood was more war than peace… her childhood was the second world war. Born in 1929, Dr. Ruth Pfau, was four years old when ‘the little wars started’. “We annexed Austria, so when the official war broke out the year was ’45 and I was a teenager,” now an octogenarian, she shares her days of yore.

When in the abode of the protector of countless human lives, the accolades she has received over the years line the walls through which I pass. When we meet, Dr Pfau was up after her afternoon nap, dressed in the traditional attire of the city which has been her home for half a century. The journey she made from Leipzig, her city of birth to Karachi has been nothing short of an ‘adventure’. Serving the helpless and the destitute only arose in her mind during the war. “It was during the war in Germany that I thought I should…

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The Kashmir you will never understand

Cafe Dissensus Everyday

By Faakirah Irfan

While I write this, the Internet connections of various service providers have been shut down. The social media services have been banned, and the only thing working in the state of Kashmir is the ongoing conflict.

The government has stood prepared to face the wrath of Kashmiris by either silencing their voices online or by the bullets on their chest.

A lot has been written about the ongoing conflict in Kashmir. There is nothing much that can be added to it. However, as a story-teller, it is my job to let the society know the truth that it is being suppressed. This is to make those not living in conflict zones realize what it feels to have your virtual life taken away.

Without going into a comparison about the authenticity of narratives, I would like to narrate the reality I know.

I am Sakeena, Raffia, Ayushee. I…

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Kashmir by-poll: When democratic practice turns into a catastrophe

Cafe Dissensus Everyday

By Arif Khan

A thematic scrutiny of electoral system in a democracy would entail at least a conversation on the existential situation of a state and the purpose of government as advocated by different political scientists. While dealing with state and government, a sort of scholastic vibes of light would be directed to cast upon the election system. The light so cast is anticipated to take us to two discrete sides: whether our system could really address problems related to elections and if our existing rules and norms meet electioneering processes, especially in Kashmir.

Criminalisation of politics and politicisation of criminals are not only the features in our political structure but have become the basis for entire political gimmicks. Stories of capturing, rigging, bogus voting, impersonation, misuse of religions, caste and tribal identities, and various other corrupt practises are the greatest challenges to democracy.

The recent by-poll in Kashmir has…

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Parallels between Indian and Palestinian Partition

Cafe Dissensus Everyday

By Inamul Haq

Partition, whether in the Indian Sub-continent or in Palestine, is considered as a catastrophe in history, resulting in lakhs of casualty. Stanley Wolpert describes Partition as a “shameful flight” of the British colonialists. For their survival and benefit, the British partitioned both India and Palestine on societal, ethnic, ideological, religious/sectarian, and geographical lines.

During August 1947 in India and again nine months later (May, 1948) in Palestine, the problem of post-colonial governance and social order was resolved by the partition of land on the basis of identity, religion, and ethnicity. It is noteworthy that partition has no consistent meaning for the populations across these countries and can be understood in the context of detailed, specific memories, images, and stories remembered and transmitted by the individuals. In the Indian sub-continent, partition is a highly charged, clashing set of images, memories mainly related to the personal and national identity…

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Internet Is Not a Holy Place, says British Muslim Scholar

Cafe Dissensus Everyday

By Mujeeb Jaihoon

Many religious-minded youths today look upon the internet as a source for spiritual enlightenment. In their zeal for outright righteousness, they innocently fall prey to many half-baked scholars, who are driven more by agitation than conviction.

“The Internet is not a holy place for spiritual seekers,” said Abdal Hakim Murad, formerly known as Timothy John Winter, in a conversation with Mujeeb Jaihoon, the UAE-based Indian author and wanderer, during his visit to the renowned academic city of Cambridge. This University City is the latest in Jaihoon’s intriguing tours to leading cradles of medieval cultural centers, which include Jordan, Palestine, Samarkand, Bukhara, Kashgar, Mughal India and Tbilisi.

Educated at Cambridge, Al-Azhar, and London universities, Shaykh Abdal Hakim Murad is a leading British Muslim scholar and researcher, who is currently serving as Shaykh Zayed Lecturer in Islamic Studies at Cambridge University and Director of Studies in Theology at Wolfson…

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The Killings in Kashmir(Indian Occupied): Kavita Krishnan

KAFILA - 10 years of a common journey

Guest Post by KAVITA KRISHNAN

An appeal to the conscience of every Indian citizen – to tune down the shrill media noise for a bit, take a step back from the easy, packaged ‘discourse’ being dished out, and ask try and ask ourselves some uncomfortable but necessary questions. 

I am being asked by various persons in the media to comment on my apparently ‘controversial’ and ‘shocking’ claim that Burhan Wani’s killing was extra-judicial’ and must be probed. Let me begin with a few remarks about this issue.

For most Kashmiris, it may not matter all that much whether or not Burhan Wani was killed in a ‘fake’ encounter or a ‘genuine’ one. What matters is that the Indian State killed him – just as it has killed and is killing so many other Kashmiri youngsters. Their grief, their rage, does not depend on the authenticity or otherwise of the encounter…

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Kashmir: A Case for Freedom

This is not a standard book review. I write this as a matter of urgency. I am typing this at 00.09 on Saturday, 6 August, and have before me a headline from a Kashmiri news item summarising the events of yesterday, the aptly named ‘bloody Friday’ of 5th August 2016:

Chairman PTI Policy Council and Member National Assembly, Asad Umar

In the Mainstream

Asad Umar, by virtue of his personality, history, and political affiliation, ranks among the leading figures in contemporary Pakistani politics. Erstwhile CEO of food production giant Engro Corporation, he began his political career by joining the Pakistan Tehreek e Insaf  (PTI) in 2012. Asad Umar heads the Media, Marketing, and Policy division of PTI. He was elected to the National Assembly from NA-48 in the 2013 General Elections.

Asad Umar embodies the PTI’s conviction in ‘change’ as an instrument of socio-economic prosperity in thought, speech, and person. Given the choices he has made over the past few years, and the precedence he has given to the larger over personal interest, one can hardly question his sincerity. His ideas are as convincing as they are powerful. Coupled with the PTI’s revolutionary rhetoric, one hopes that his corporate pragmatism helps translate his, and the party’s, vision into reality.

 1.  Beginning with…

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Dean, Faculty of Contemporary Studies, National Defence University, Prof. Dr. Pervaiz Iqbal Cheema

In the Mainstream

Prof. Dr. Pervaiz Iqbal Cheema is Dean Faculty of Contemporary Studies at National Defence University, Islamabad. A seasoned teacher and experienced researcher Dr Cheema has served many academic institutions both inside and outside the country in various capacities over a period nearing four decades. He has numerous research publications to his name that were published inside as well as outside Pakistan.

Q: Gwadar Port is believed to be a game changer. Do you think it has the potential to bring a significant change for Pakistan and, by extension, South Asia?

Pervaiz Cheema: It is definitely a game-changer. But projects like these involve pragmatic interests on both sides. No state helps you for the sake of helping you.

China is an energy-dependent country. It imports energy resources from the Gulf which have to cover an estimated 10,000 km distance just to reach China and an additional 5,000 km inside it. China can…

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Passing on the gift of education

Plan International Pakistan

Zia Abbas, currently works as a technician with the Pakistan Air Force in Chakwal District. But this is not the end of the road for him; it is a means to an end. While the money from his job helps him support his family, it also funds his education.

Zia’s passion is education and his ambition is to become a teacher to educate children in his hometown, Walana.

Zia is also a former sponsored child, and knows first-hand how it can help improve the conditions of communities.

Passing on the gift of education 2

When Plan International introduced its sponsorship programme and development projects in Zia’s village, along with addressing important issues such safe access to schools, and improving the sewage systems, improving the education indicators of the area, was also one of the top priorities.

This struck a chord with Zia, who was a keen learner. As he grew older he also benefited from English language…

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2015 in review

The WordPress.com stats helper monkeys prepared a 2015 annual report for this blog. Here's an excerpt: A New York City subway train holds 1,200 people. This blog was viewed about 5,700 times in 2015. If it were a NYC subway train, it would take about 5 trips to carry that many people. Click here to …

In Loving Memory of Quaid-e-Azam Muhammad Ali Jinnah

Operation Pakistan

A Secular, Liberal or a Leader of Islam?

There are many misconceptions that exist in today’s society regarding the founding father of Pakistan; some say that Quaid-e-Azam Muhammad Ali Jinnah wanted a state which was secular and had no influence of religion but only law and order; others say that he was in favour of liberalism. The points that are used to argue this views are generally taken from the famous address on 11th August 1947:

  • You are free; you are free to go to your temples, you are free to go to your mosques or to any other place or worship in this state of Pakistan. You may belong to any religion or caste or creed that has nothing to do with the business of the state.
  • Now I think we should keep that in front of us as our ideal and you will find that in course of time Hindus…

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The Nawaz Government’s downward spiral of doom

Pakistan’s political climate is undergoing a dramatic change; on one hand the furious storm of Dr Qadri is battling its way through all possible hurdles for the sake of a prosperous Pakistan whilst at the same time, Imran Khan’s breeze is passing by, almost completely undisturbed, with PMLN’s thunder and lightning beating down upon the …

Silent Chaos

It is the evening of 7th August 2014. There is muted silence all around me. Somewhere in DG Khan a man has been arrested. In Lahore, a child and his mother have been abused whilst trying to defend the forced entry of the police inside their homes. On the streets of Model Town, I can …

Post Revolutionary Pakistan [Part 4]

http://www.dailymotion.com/video/x21xscp_dr-tahir-ul-qadri-s-4th-lecture-on-the-post-revolutionary-pakistan-22-july-2014_news Yesterday’s lecture focused on the unconstitutional structure of the current government. Democracy is not the name given to a system which does not provide the poor their constitutional right. Today’s lecture will discuss what the poor will receive after the revolution. People of Pakistan should be aware of their constitutional rights; they are not begging, …

Like Herding Cats: My not-so-simple struggle through modern activism in the quest of finding reasonable steps towards peace inside of International Conflicts.

Reblogging this post because it speaks of rising up from our prejudices and being a humanitarian,I strongly believe that deep down every religion preaches humanitarianism.

(true) Radicalism in the 21st Century

Hello World-

My name is Madison. Like many writing a blog, I am a twentysomething year old towards the end of my college career and seeking my true path in life…..not that I can ever know completely what that is, but the passion I have towards finding it seems to be helping me through. When I’m not obsessively thinking about the global implications of capitalism, consciousness, the state of our world’s class structure, and issues of social equality, I spend my time as an active painter, singer, traveler, reader, student, hot-sauce connoisseur, INFP, and modern day radical.

Wait a minute…….

STOP.

I know what you’re thinking- seriously, I do. Everything else sounds fine, but really?  A self-proclaimed radical? That word is -quite literally- thrown all over the place as a buzz word to either scare or to show fanatical allegiance to a one-sided cause, depending on the generation. “What’s so new?”…

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