While some parts of the world are facing extreme drought conditions, others are ravaged by unprecedented floods. So is the story of Pakistan where recent monsoon rains and floods have wreaked havoc in the country causing loss of life and property. Millions of people have been affected by the heavy rainfall. Close to a thousand people and hundreds of thousands of cattle have died (as … Continue reading Recent floods and climate change – Pakistan
Pakistan’s is a sexually repressed, economically frustrated, religiously poisoned, and deeply patriarchal society where 90% of the men have not had a social interaction with a woman growing up, outside of their household. And certainly, do not know what it means to have females as friends. Even those from the households are not spared by men. The cases where a stepfather, a relative or a … Continue reading Hundreds grope one
Outlet Shopping centre on the outskirts of Bicester, a town in Oxfordshire, England. Continue reading Bicester Village
By now, you all have heard of the infamous virus that has brought life to a halt throughout the world. Your own life has been impacted by it. The rhythm of your daily life has been broken. You are either confined in the bounds of your home, or you are going out less frequently than you would normally, or the places you would have otherwise … Continue reading The What, How and Why of Coronavirus
Winter wonderland – Hyde Park, London December 2019 Continue reading Winter Wonderland, London
There are two main approaches to fight a pandemic. First is the mainstream one – called containment – taken by countries like China and Italy to fight the spread of coronavirus. Containment is effective in the short term. It is not the ideal approach though, but still less risky in the short term. The other approach which the UK has been contemplating is herd immunity. … Continue reading Herd Immunity and COVID-19
Coronavirus has spread globally. Despite China being the country hit hardest by this epidemic, the number of international cases continue to increase with the tick of the clock. The total number of recorded cases stand at around 50,000 people as of Feb 12, 2020. In just under 1.5 months, it has spread to around 30 countries as reported. The number of cases have begun to … Continue reading Virus Out Of Hands
The spread of coronavirus begs opening up a philosophical debate around freedom and choice. You are free to choose what you wear as long as it is not affecting the lives of others. You can choose the god you want to worship as long as your veneration does not affect the lives of those who pick to pray to another god, or hold no god … Continue reading Freedom of food choice
Your individual life, per se, has no purpose. It’s a meaningless, purposeless venture. As much as it should be a relief, it comes out to be a scary news. This can make you and me depressed. We don’t want to feel isolated, neglected and above all: useless. We find solance in being associated with something bigger than ourselves – a group, a tribe, a race, … Continue reading What is the purpose of your life?
Picked up widely only a couple of years ago, the #metoo movement was a bold step to bring up, seldom long past, encounters of sexual misconduct borne by women. From a social media hashtag to a worldwide campaign, the #metoo spread like wildfire. With each brave coming out by one woman after another, soon it turned into a global movement. Bringing back to life the … Continue reading The #metoo enigma
A divine landscape of scenic peaks, lush green meadows, and breath-taking rivers, lakes, and glaciers: Kashmir. Pashtuns, Mughals, Sikhs, Buddhists, British; they have all dominated this region one time or another. The prevailing Muslim Kashmir, as we know it today, is less than two hundred years old development. This nirvana on earth has been a hotly contested region for centuries. The latest and the deadliest … Continue reading The Kashmir Puzzle
In the dry arid deserts of Arabia centuries ago, possessing cattle was as much a privilege as profession. The tribesmen would nourish the animal right from birth, trade their milk, and occasionally consume them for their meat; even barter them on need. They would grow up with their animals, co-sharing their very habitats. Thus, developing a bond with the animals all along. Not much different … Continue reading Stories are for exciting introspection
A nine-month old girl died after battling brain paralysis which resulted due to a drug overdose at a hospital in the city of Karachi, Pakistan. Unfortunately, hundreds – if not thousands – die untimely every month due to medical negligence in hospitals worldwide. Sometimes the carelessness come out openly as it did in the case from Darul Sehat Hospital. Other times it remains obscure under … Continue reading How to proceed with Nashwa’s case?
A set of 17 goals and 169 targets to usher the world on to a path of sustainable development in the next fifteen years came into force on 1st January 2016. UN’s 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development forms the basis for these goals. Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) – centered around the three dimensions of sustainable development: the economic, social and environmental – stimulate action in … Continue reading Role of transport in achieving SDGs
Associate professor Khalid Hameed was killed on Wednesday at the campus of Sadiq Egerton College in the southern city of Bahawalpur, Pakistan. Ktatib Hussain attacked his professor in the early hours of the day. The assassin accused the professor of blasphemy. Khatib said he was also against the un-Islamic events being organised in the department which the slain professor supported. Thanks to the draconian blasphemy … Continue reading A pupil murders his professor over blasphemy
The terrorism that took place in Christchurch, New Zealand (On 15th March 2019, Friday) is nothing but horror. The mere thought of the perpetrator to kill fellow human beings with such brutality is a display of cruelty not much different from that of ISIS chopping heads of its captives. The only obvious difference between Brenton Tarrant and ISIS jihadists is the molecular heterogeneity in … Continue reading Sentiments of Hate
Shamima Begum left the UK to join ISIS when she was a teenager. She was not alone in her journey. Two other school-girls left together with her for Syria via Turkey. We all know what peer pressure can be at age fifteen. As much as her choice is condemnable, in fact is gravely criminal, she still is a human susceptible to blunders. And surely she … Continue reading If it can be brainwashed, it can also be rewashed; provided sufficient will
Climate change is one of the greatest threats our planet today faces. Despite its unanimous scientific understanding, we are still not able to do what is needed. There are a number of reasons for it which I will highlight below before moving to steps we can take to fight climate change. You almost could not design a problem that is a worse fit with our … Continue reading What can you do about climate change?
Throughout history, women had it rough. By almost every measure, it was easier to be a man than to be a woman. From being un-wanted before birth to getting discarded at birth, rights of women in modern societies have come a long way. With the enlightenment ideas, seeds of change were sown. It would not have been without the struggle of hundreds and thousands of … Continue reading Pakistan – fourth worst country for women
Since the Industrial Revolution, the speculations that mechanisation ⚙️ will take away the jobs have been high. Such rumours remained rumours only for the most part of the time since. There was indeed a decline in numbers of jobs in certain sectors, only to be compensated by the emergence of other totally new sectors. When the fields become factories, the farmers who lost their jobs became … Continue reading Future of human work in the age of AI
As per a safe estimate, a total of 1100 plants/trees were planted under the banner of this initiative (of course with the help of the collaborations). One Sunday evening in early June 2018, I sat pondering over the current climate change, upcoming Independence Day of Pakistan (Aug 14) and past childhood memories of buying flags for the day. It was this occasion when it occurred … Continue reading Tree Plantation Initiative
No. Flooded streets are not the real issue. Nor is the erupted sinkhole in front of GPO on Mall Road, Lahore. Water had to infiltrate. What’s wrong if it found a spot on Mall Road out of all the roads when the built drainage capacity overshoots? (How quick and effectively is the sink now reconstructed should be asked though). The flooding, by definition, remains worse … Continue reading Floods, Pakistan and August
Organisms have certain optimal functioning conditions. Often they get sick, get healed. But after a certain threshold, the self-healing does not occur. Neither do then any interventions be of any help to reverse the blight. Human bodies function best at a certain body temperature range. Cross the extremes and it no longer lives. So is the case with our only habitable planet, to date, Earth. … Continue reading Boundaries of Earth
Originally posted on Eraas Haider:
27th January marked the Holocaust Memorial Day. 72 years ago on this day, the infamous concentration camps in present-day Germany (and around) were liberated which remained subject to unfathomable atrocities by Hitler and alike on (mostly) Jews resulting in deaths as high as 6 million in numbers. Today the grandchildren and great-grandchildren of the same victims and survivors come to… Continue reading Two important lessons from the Holocaust
Death is an inescapable reality. And so real is our obsession to overcome it. Immortality has been at the core of fundamentals that drives us. As old as the quest of Greek philosophers’ about life, through the Egyptian era of mummifying, to the present day, scientific endeavors to uploading our minds into a computer, living forever has been a fundamental struggle throughout time. Who does … Continue reading Beyond Death
The rear-view mirror, which we call history, helps us to examine the past to determine the course of action for future while being in present. It is not only for examining our own journey heretofore but also of those who are on the same road. As well as those whose path we crossed or who crossed our path previously. John Arnold, a British historian … Continue reading Why History?
It was a cold morning in the year 1996 in Scotland. A middle-aged man, Thomas Hamilton, killed 17 pupils including one teacher at Dunblane Primary School near Sterling, Scotland. Later he committed suicide. It was the deadliest mass shooting, involving guns, in the whole of British history. The year is still 1996. A young Austrian chap gunned down 35 innocent citizens while injuring two-dozen others … Continue reading Los Vegas carnage and Gun Laws
The undisputed role world religions have played in the unification of mankind cannot be denied. Religions became a source of expansion and resultantly unification of mankind. Similarly, the mayhems majority world religions had on the mankind, mostly while expanding, are also undeniable. From crusades to holy wars and from ethnic cleansing to mass murders, the toll of deaths on the shoulders of (religious) ideologies is … Continue reading If at all!
Under weighing one’s own opinions when confronted with someone else’s with higher social or psychological authority. Swallowing your opinion in front of your boss at work, or trusting the judgment of elders, only adhered to their experience and not content. We all encounter such situations on a regular basis. From say of the ship-captain to the verdict of an elderly in a village, their judgments are … Continue reading Think Before You Bow
2023 Pakistan – Origins, Identity and Future (Pervez Hoodbhoy) Four Thousand Weeks (Oliver Burkeman) The courage to be disliked (Ichiro Kishimi and Fumitake Koga) What We Owe The Future (William Macaskill) The Future We Choose (Christiana Figueres and Tom Rivet-Carnac) The Hidden Life of Trees (Peter Wohlleben) 2022 Why Our Children Will be Atheists (Albert Williams) Climate Change for Dummies (Elizabeth May and John Kidder) … Continue reading Books
It is beyond religion. It is something unconsciously being wired into our faith-driven society’s DNA, at varying levels in different believers of faith. Inhumanely treating another human is not outlandish to eyes, least in Pakistan. Agonizing cries of victims are no more unfamiliar to Pakistani ears. Stories of a mob taking law unlawfully in their hands have and sadly continue to float across media every … Continue reading Mardan lynching, Pakistan’s Blasphemy Law and way ahead
Brainwashing is real and easier than you might expect it to be. Sadly, a majority of madrassas have notorious repute when it comes to brainwashing and producing the filth any rational being would detest, ‘religious extremists’. To understand this easy phenomenon, we need to look at basic three ingredients needed to brainwash a then sentient being. Ensure below-discussed elements and a conditioned conformist is right … Continue reading Brainwashing and madrassas in Pakistan
Confusing factors with results is a fallacy we humans commit more than often. Take cosmetics advertisement industry, for instance. It’s not that (all) their products will turn you into the beautiful model being advertised. The fact is that the advertisement industry picks up attractive beautiful women to appear in their commercials. Cosmetics advertisement industry would collapse if more and more people start to think this … Continue reading Think clearly, analyze honestly then proceed confidently
27th January marked the Holocaust Memorial Day. 72 years ago on this day, the infamous concentration camps in present-day Germany (and around) were liberated which remained subject to unfathomable atrocities by Hitler and alike on (mostly) Jews resulting in deaths as high as 6 million in numbers. Today the grandchildren and great-grandchildren of the same victims and survivors come to the same countries for work, … Continue reading Two important lessons from the Holocaust
More than a hundred thousand people die each day all over the world. Unless we are related to them in any form, their death goes unnoticed for rest of the world. Death does excite a feeling of bereavement, however, it’s the affiliation that we truly grieve over. It can be seen with accidental deaths that receive a divided response. Just over a week ago when … Continue reading Your ideological affiliations should not be a hindrance in your grieving over Junaid Jamshed’s death
Present day man suffers from numerous biases in every day decision-making. Among the plethora lies survivorship bias (or survivors bias). It’s a bias in which one that succeeds or that survives gets visibility while that could not survive fades out of view. It’s true that Oxford and Stanford develop best minds but not all minds produced at Oxford or Stanford are equally great. The reason being that … Continue reading Visiting graveyard of failures
Some photos of Paris ( September 2016 ) Continue reading Paris-France
Here is a collection of some photos I took while on my road trip from The South of England to quite-North of UK. Drove about 2645 km through the UK in one week. A total of 47 Driving hours. ( #London, #Glasgow, #Edinburgh, #Brighton, #Lake-District and around. ) Continue reading Roadtrip to Scotland
Coexistence: living together at the same place at the same time. The term has developed over the years; from being used in context of U.S and U.S.S.R relations in 1980s to now covering a broader wider range including social, cultural, religious aspects. A healthy society is a diverse spectrum of identities. Owing to globalisation, individuals from different ideological classes, ethnicities, religions, genders, political affiliations, sexual … Continue reading Coexistence: The only plausible existence
It is a way of empowering the individuals and making them realise that if today they violate someone else’s rights, tomorrow their rights might be violated too. ‘Mob justice’ is when a group of people take law in their hands and punish an alleged criminal themselves rather than getting the authorities involved and following proper prosecution. Incidents of mob violence are a clear reflection of a society … Continue reading Combating mob violence is impossible without human rights education
Pakistan is no exception when it comes to ills of honour killings. Every year, according to estimates, nearly 1000 lives are lost in the name of honour killing, mostly women. The recent incident in Lahore where a mother burnt her 17 year old daughter, Zeenat, for marrying a guy of her choice is just another case of countless atrocities women in our society suffer from. … Continue reading Honour Is A Belief While Human Life Is A Reality
None of us chose our ‘Basket of Birth’. Nobody in history chose them to be born to a particular society, particular region or a particular family. Neither was it a part of a pre-planned marvellous script. It was nothing but a coincidence. The same day and same time you were born, there were hundreds other born in different nooks of the world. However, each … Continue reading Basket of birth-a mere coincidence
We see any crime through our narrow spectrum and define it as an individual disconnected action or at times a reaction to any preceding or expected action. But this process is not as simple as it might seem. Deprivation, parental ignorance, societal neglect, low self-esteem, feelings of revenge, attaining quick fame, drug abuse, poverty, racism and witnessing violence in its several forms are some of … Continue reading Behind the backdrop of Crime
A less known, if not forgotten, symbol of fight against child labour is Iqbal Masih. His story has inspired many individuals and organisations alike. From social activists to Noble Peace Prize winners, all have found inspiration in him and have not gone without mentioning him in their speeches. At an age when he should have been admitted to a school, he was sold in bondage … Continue reading The boy who stood against child labour
Recently, there has been a lot of hyperbole on social media on we Pakistanis being a resilient nation. I wonder if this so-called resilience may be our national anathema? Resilience is the plasticity of an organism, its ability to return to the original resting state after being displaced by application of force. We claim to be a resilient nation, who has overcome adversaries as big … Continue reading Wonder if our resilience itself is our problem!