Oh, Peshawar!

Renowned as the one of oldest living cities of South Asia- once famous for its shady boulevards and heavenly sunsets against towering Tatara Mountains in the background, Peshawar derives its name from Sanskrit "Pushpaur" meaning the city…

Marriage or Punishment?

Marriage is an intimate union and socially or ritually recognized partnership between men and women. It is an institution in which sexual and interpersonal relationships are acknowledged, and a legal contract is recognized by the state,…

Who’s afraid of Attan?

A performance of the traditional Pashtun dance on a Lahore campus recently led to violence from religious conservatives. Abdur Rauf Yousafzai reports

I am not a good person

My six-year son, Arshad, recently came across an old scrapbook of photos. Pointing at one of them, he asked who the man in the photo was. This is Bertrand Russell, a British philosopher, pacifist and non-conformist, who authored several…

Asma Jehangir, a force to be reckoned with

Growing up, I was filled with loathing for Asma Jehangir and yet somewhere deep down I had a sense of respect for her, however grudging it may have been. Today, I have come full circle and openly admit having deep and uninhibited respect…

Middle Eastern temptations

It is hardly surprising to see the eruption of a heated debate in Pakistan over the decision of General (retired) Raheel Sharif (GRS) to become head of the so-called Islamic Military Alliance which is cobbled together by Saudi Arabia. Many…

The Chinese belt and road initiative

China will host the first Summit of the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) in May 2017. This initiative is hugely consequential, as the world is witnessing changes on a civilisational scale. Revival of the ancient Silk Road and the quest to…

The fight for survival

A pair of eyes anxiously kept on running around the bright pink and red room and sometimes back to browsing some documents lying on the table. Slightly hesitant, Jannat Ali was nothing belonging to the society’s typical image of a ‘hijra’…