Express Tribune: Dr Arif Alvi is an acquired taste. He isn’t your typical flash in the pan Pakistani politician who rides his 1,000-watt charisma to answer difficult questions. Instead, Dr Arif is that rare Pakistani politician whose substance overwhelms his style. He quotes ideas from Plato, Maulana Maududi, Marx and Thomas Piketty with equal ease. Even if you’re a resident of his constituency in Karachi’s Defence or Clifton area, you might not know that he was shot twice while protesting against Ayub Khan’s military rule. “Suddenly my hand dropped and I started bleeding,” says Dr Arif, recounting the moment he was shot right before curfew. “I held my limp hand and walked towards the hospital. My fingers were paralysed for months. I thought I would have to give up dentistry as a profession after I was shot.” The bullets remain lodged in his body to this day.
Zahid F Ebrahim, in his article of August 4 titled, “Ten truths about electoral rigging”, published in The Express Tribune, presented a very biased view on the topic. The Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) should have stepped in to allay doubts of any election rigging, but with this article, it seems that the neutrality that was needed to conduct a free and fair election was never there to begin with. It seems that this was the mindset from the start: to appease the powers that be, instead of giving Pakistanis even a semblance of a free and fair election.
I truly respect Mr Ebrahim and his father. I believe Mr Fakhruddin G Ebrahim is an honest person, but his appointment, especially considering his age, probably was the factor that failed Pakistan. This job required a commander, who would whip, snap and beat the life out of anyone who so much as stumbled in performing his duties to conduct transparent elections. I do not challenge the former chief election commissioner’s honesty or integrity on a personal level. I am aware that he, along with his family, have sacrificed a lot this past year — but I would like to raise some concerns here.
Its hilarious at how PML-N is running confused on so many fronts, politically confused as to which side of the government does it want to be, sometimes it screams of protests from the side of Opposition, but the very next day it flips over and goes soft, in the online arena the abundant social media employed to counter the PTI Tsunami online also behaves like a headless behemoth, full of daily propaganda with no soul.
Today (6th June, 2012) Express Tribune printed a story on Page 2 – ‘Like’ my Facebook page, Shahbaz tells officials [404-DEAD LINK] which narrated a story as to how the Chief Minister has been asking Punjab govt employees to like his page & “remove PTI-related material from their Facebook accounts and not ‘like’ any PTI page”
PTI supporters started making funny jabs at how the Chief Minister was trying to rally Patwaris in the Punjab Govt to build “likes” for Shahbaz Sharif’s “political” page. In a very surprising development a few hours later Express Tribune deleted the article from their website. No explanation given, just a simple delete, was it under political pressure? Was the story misreported? We can only wonder what happened?
There is absolutely no crime in promoting your facebook page, social media experts world over do it all the time, so why a sudden embarrassed push to delete the story, so whatever the reason something did definitely bother PML-N and its supporters to force Express Tribune to pull the entire article from the website
So for whatever it is worth, I think its important to retain the contents for digital posterity, occasionally to rub the embarrassed PML-N noses to a shine for this gaff or for preserve this to question Express Tribune’s political bias for succumbing to political pressure and
Zain Umar penned a very passionate article on his blog So Imran Khan’s the target of your Goebbels’s Vendetta! criticizing bloggers and writers at Express Tribune on going virulent against Imran Khan, I think this paragraph sums up my passion and the passion of thousands of PTI supporters
Imran Khan has his faults; he has had his share of indiscretions, oversights, omissions and faux paus; but which mortal is above such foibles and weaknesses? He who has never committed a sin, should hurl the first stone! He who lays claims to infallibility be our savior and I am ready to swore his allegiance
Khurram Husain writes a very powerful Op-ed in the Express Tribune Cheer the Assassin!, as much as the blasphemy law may be a part of our constitution, there is no way that anyone be above the law to commit murder, that act in itself is not Islam
This op-ed was drafted a day before Gov Salman Taseers assassination, erringly it talks about peace and the notion of blasphemy in Pakistan
As we round the corner, saying goodbye to 2010 and entering the new year, everyone chooses to make a new year’s resolution. Promises are made, hoping for some miraculous conviction that will transform our wishes into a reality. But practically, each one of us knowingly accepts that these promises are meant to be broken, only to be remade the following year. Many wishes are egocentrically linked to personal wealth and happiness, while some fools, like me, choose to wish for a better and a peaceful Pakistan.
Innocent and howsoever utopian this resolution may sound, it should have an important place amongst every Pakistani. After the bloodshed from the escalating violence and uncontrolled terror attacks, one would have hoped that the disastrous year would have sent shockwaves compelling people to denounce terrorism with a very strong commitment to peace. Denounce they do, but it’s limited to a simple vocal chatter rather than concrete measures to prevent such bloodshed from happening again.
Facebook activism is a new buzzword making its way into the public sphere and discourse in Pakistan. As excited as I am by its power, I am worried at the exponential increase in the number of people giving all kinds of opinions. As a result, I find that it is increasingly becoming easy to lose track of genuine content in an ever-expanding web of social gossip chatter. The positive side in this is that more people are becoming independent digital journalists, some of them displaying as much influence as a media house.
The world, we are told, is in the midst of a revolution. Social media has reinvented activism. With Facebook and Twitter and the like, the traditional relationship between political authority and popular will has been upended, making it easier for the once powerless to collaborate and coordinate in order to give voice to their concerns.