Friday, September 17, 2010


It's tense here in the windy city. A few burnt cars and a confused political party.
It was midnight in Karachi as four men congregated in the car park of an apartment complex on Boat Basin. The weather was pleasant but the mood wasn't. A young man, probably twenty five, fished out a rolled joint out of an empty cigarette pack. He lit it up, and started speaking.

As with most discussions amongst men, the smalltalk crept surely into the realm of politics. The oldest of them, an allegedly honest government official had begun defaming the MQM.

'It's a mob', he says. 'They killed their own guy.'

According to him, a US convoy had visited Grandmaster Altaf Hussain and had spoken of plans for their joint 'revolution'. As planned, Altaf would go on air and invigorate the party to get them on board for this inqilaab. He worried that this would include propaganda for the spread of immorality under the banner of secularism- an incurable evil.

Conversation drifted to other insider dealings and Daud Ibrahim came up. It was concluded that he was a champion for the Muslims in India, who, were it not for him, would be getting their womenfolk raped (they still do, of course, but that the situation would be much worse); that he was the only 'fuck you' to the Shiv Sena. Somebody offered a Babri Masjid quip.

And then back to Daud. Apparently, Javed Miandad's winning sixer had won his heart.

Thursday, September 9, 2010

super saturday

The festival of Eid marks the end of the Islamic month of fasting and is celebrated by Muslims around the world. It is an occasion that gives Christmas a run for its money and is symbolized by the same basic themes: dressing up, getting together with family and gorging till you pass out.

Koran Burning Day, scheduled for this Saturday by the New Dove Centre-Church in the United States of America has been met with much public criticism, including that by the current president of Pakistan and of the USA.

While the statistical significance of Eid falling on the 11th of September on the Roman calendar is interesting on its own- this happens once in x thousand years- what makes this a Saturday to watch out for is the fact that on the same date, a Pastor and his fifty odd followers will be orchestrating a world-wide Koran-burning.

The event is bound to spark protests- many of them violent- in Muslim communities the world over. What’s worse is that the American government, a champion of all sorts of civilian rights, cannot legally stop it from happening. The underlying hypocrisy, and moreover the sheer absurdity of the entire scenario, however could form a thesis of its own.

Is it just me, or does anybody else have a bad feeling about this Saturday?