Wednesday, December 30, 2009
As the year 2009 ends its at least time for reflection. This ritual will help those who are still keen on resolutions & even for the likes of me, because at least it outlines for you to some extent the dos & don’ts for the next year.
My reflection left me quite depressed. Last year goes down in my memory lane as one of the worst years of my life; & my guess is history is not going to categorize it any different. I can’t give an outline of my individual self & the picture around me separately. Both of them I found being integrated to the core. A realization that hit me hard, even though being extensively discussed in my sociology courses. And I felt like joining the camp of those sociologists who give maximum weightage to the society’s role in the life of an individual.
Things happening around us from the recession to the political atmosphere changed the outlook of people’s take on LIFE & what they want out of it. Uncertainty is a term even a kindergartener can spell now. And the thing that is bugging me the most is that none of is planning to ask “What did we do wrong”. This is not just the case of our politicians (for whom hopeless is an understatement now) but even at individual level, our family level etc. we are moving at such a fast pace that we don’t even have time to stop or even slow down & just see what our pace has done, not just for the present but the future as well. Being a business student we are always taught to look at situations from both a short-term & long-term perspective. While in discussions, case studies etc we always mark the long term benefits as the more suitable, but when it comes to real life practice, we leave behind our lessons in the class room, why? I still haven’t found an answer to this.
Another dark spot this year carries is the desensitization of the loss of life. Yes, we still feel low when some maniac decides to take a direct flight to the heaven (which lands on the opposite turf for sure) but compare our present reaction to when all this was not to frequent. One such incident would in the past radiate its impact; you could feel it in the air. My mother, who’s an anatomist for the past 25 years couldn’t sleep for days. Now, the death toll is just becoming a figure for everyone. I feel if we individuals don’t take back the control over the society & instead tell it keep monitoring us, we’ll never get out of this web, which to some extent we too have contributed in.
And yes individuals do have the capability of doing this. I have experienced it. If 2009 will ever make me smile, it will be because of this single contribution that it brought to my life. I landed up in a friendship bond with Karishma from across the border, a country with which my land has never maintained a permanent good relation & currently the situation is nowhere close to getting better. Our bond strengthened under the circumstances when our politicians were having a tough time even shaking hands & smiling for the press; something they are a master of. That’s when the power of individuals struck me. Both of us don’t agree on everything & no one can challenge our love for our respective motherlands, but still we have a blast together & thank our lucky stars for our chance encounter. Infact our encounter too is based on agreeing with the ideas of an individual (Fatima Bhutto). With setting our base on this, we have grown to the point where we plan to make our contribution (even though quite small an effort compared to the vastness of the issue at hand) to show that regaining sanity might not be that difficult.
My personal experience pulled me back to the camp of that ideology of sociologist who are of the view point that individuals form the society, therefore have the power to control it & change it. Basing our quantity on quality is going to be the key for the change we are looking for.
Hoping, that 2010 goes down my memory lane with the tag line, “When it changed for the better”.
Friday, December 25, 2009
So if we just give a glance to our definition of education, it centers on academics. The grades you score by being drowned in the text books etcetera etcetera. Who’s to be blamed then when education is not producing the results it should? We have our basics set up in the wrong foundation. When we refer to education majority of us don’t even have the mental grooming of an individual at the back of our minds. We are referring to the superficial success of that individual.
Though the literacy rate is on the rise on an average but what good has that done? An educated society should have put an end to the double standards which formulates the roots of most of the issues the world in general & our country specifically suffers from. The irony here is that even the educational system is not cured from the double standards. In every country there exists schools which have a higher standard of education & then there are institutes which are not up to the mark; & mostly people who can’t afford to send their children to good schools end up sending their children to these lower quality schools. So in this way from the start of one’s life foundation of double standards, discrimination etc are laid in individuals who’ll be forming a society & integrate in them these qualities which were grinded in them from the very start.
No doubt the globalized education system is breeding top notch professional but this system is eating up the humans inside these professional. There is absolutely nothing wrong in being ambitions & competitive but when the rule of “everything is fair in love & war” is applied everywhere, the results are the surrounding we are living in. Our current system is promoting individualism to such an extent that people have started hurting the society to fulfill their personal goals. Under such circumstances people are ready to relocate, even denounce their nationality if it is creating even the slightest hindrance in their path, taking refuge in the increasing stance that the world is a global village. If so then why can’t these very same people stop stereotyping people of a specific state or religion if really we are following the path of globalization.
To this date, where we claim that we are the most civilized, highly educated lot we still haven’t agreed to disagree. Followers of each separate ideology consider it to be the best & want to impose it on the rest of the world. And for that all means become fair. Be it manipulating a country’s political system or waging a war based on false accusation. All this being not just conducted by the most educated lot but also supported by the educated class around the globe. To satisfy our conscience we do tend o wage verbal protest by using unpractical means. We have organizations whose mandate is to monitor peace & to keep a check on the ambitions of states. However, they have failed to do so.
We haven’t used our education for radiating a positive impact. The issues which should have our utmost attention are the last on our list. We haven’t shown any progress on the increasing environmental issues at the level which is the need of the hour. Intolerance exists. There are so many imbalances on this planet. At one side we have such rich countries that cannot even imagine any scarcity; they exercise immense power around the globe. And then there is this other extreme where people die of ailments which aren’t even considered issues in the other parts. This imbalance results in the rise up of resistance which takes up the ugly looks of terrorism. Individual we term as terrorist aren’t necessarily following an ideology, their economic conditions play a vital role in their changing camps. We have the history of Afghanistan to prove this point. The core bodies of extremist organizations are present where the state should have been playing a role. Malcolm X is another perfect example. A product of an unequal, unjust & dual faced system, which produced such hatred in him & his initial mentor Eljha Muhammad was able to spun him in his camp by hitting on the right spot.
It might burst our bubble, but the reality is that our current educational system is not at all playing its due role. Revisiting the system is the dire need of the time. Though used inappropriately educational system if used properly, it can play a very positive & healing role to our global village.
First published in: Pro-Pakistan
Monday, November 30, 2009
On a second thought isn't this pointing towards a fact that Islamophobia is a political stunt rather than an ideology of Islam; something even a COMMON MAN has been declaring at the top of his voice. It took a lot of years & destruction for a Sectary of State of USA to admit the blunder her government committed with regards to Afghanistan; so admitting this foul play will take a lot more years as well. In the meanwhile discrete discrimination will rule.
Where is this global village headed?
Friday, November 13, 2009
Wednesday, November 11, 2009
Monday, November 9, 2009
This is absurd to say the least. And I am so much looking forward to shredding this ad in my next marketing lecture. My irritation includes the unnecessary presence of women, the flying act (which is performed by the air forces) while the name of the brand is "Diplomat".
Me thinks that tobacco companies along with the banking sector need to review their marketing departments without any further delays. As both of these cooperate sectors seriously challenge one's common sense.
Sunday, October 25, 2009
Wednesday, October 21, 2009
Who are these species(human beings is wrong terminology for them), for whom the biggest gift of the All Might has no value? But then again is this not something that we have been asking from the day one all this started? Only questions are being asked no one is trying to come up with any answers. Specially those who are elected to answer such questions are the most clueless beings.
From a personal view point this situation is reminding me of the incidents that I have heard from my parents who had lived through Zia's regime. When their institutes were shut down, when the youth of that time turned towards the drug mafia to vent out their frustration, a time when they were left clue less as what to do with their lives, when a batch with under normal conditions would have graduated from medical school in five years took seven years; all thanks to the political instability of that time.
The present situation might not be that bleak(just one week) but isn't it just the start? When are we gonna learn from our history?
We can conduct as many operation as we like & kill as many terrorist as we like but until & unless the people who train these kids(majority of the suicide bombers are teenagers or in their early 20s) we are landing nowhere. And ha anyone of us though about the roles played by economic factors here. No agenda, no ethics have any value when you & your family is suffering even for the basic needs. Something a few of us take for granted.
During the earthquake of 2005, we saw the absence of the State, in Afghanistan it was the absence of the State which brought the Taliban the support among the masses that they have. So who's to blame?
Tuesday, September 22, 2009
Chances are minimal if any that these people will actually do something about what this teenager threw in their faces, but still it is encouraging to see that our generation is not only about the latest models of cellphones, junk food & all that pure capitalism has to offer.
Here's the link, do pass it on in your circle as well:
Friday, September 18, 2009
The more pathetic part is that these are the sort of people who are claiming to be representing the people of Pakistan. I am seriously loosing my love for this sort of dummy democracy (better termed as DAMACRACY). Where the hell are we heading???? When the world is talking about changing the minds of the people & the politics of this globalized period calls for playing mind games, our self professed democratic rulers are playing the roles of a stereotyped subcontinental mother-in-law & daughter-in-law.
Ferdos Ashaiq has not only embarrassed her newly adopted party but also her teachers at the Fatima Jinnah Medical College. However, something that was new for me was that the faculty at F.J.M.C remembers her as someone who was uncivilized as a student as well.
So was she a politician in the making from day one, if yes at least she should have spared one of the most respected profession of our country. A country where every second person wants to become a doctor or engineer.
Thursday, September 10, 2009
Wednesday, September 9, 2009
According to Mr Haq, his father was a true Islamic icon of this country & was eliminated by the enemies just because of this. He needs to be reminded that the majority of the people hold a drastically different view; according to which Islam was distorted the most by Zia to gain political support. He used Islam to justify his coming to power, the way he did; to gain support for the Afghan war whose price we as a nation are paying to date.
Adding to his list of achievements are introduction of the drug culture, the Kalashnikov culture, our own version of Taliban, lack of tolerance for other's believes & view points, wide spread of Madrassas which were left unchecked & instead of fulfilling the duties which are assigned to this institution in theory in our religion, majority of them were producing mindless extremist & not to mention a whole generation of youth which had no clue as to what they want to do with their lives. All thanks to Marad-e-Momin Zia. The creation of extremely corrupt political parties which are looming on our heads today, leaving us with no other alternative to choose from is an achievement of Mr Zia which has contributed to our present rotten political system.
Mr Haq is pointing fingers at the USA for their involvement in his fathers murder, but then who's responsible for making them our big daddy. Wasn't it Zia who bowed before them so that he could rule the land of pure for eleven years & the continuous support for his version of Jihad. What about the interrogation cell constructed under the Lahore Fort, what about all that torture suffered by people just because they disagreed with the regime.
Ijaz-ul-Haq wanted the late Benazir Bhutto's government to bring to justice those involved in the plot. Wasn't he demanding too much or has he forgotten that Zia executed Shaheed Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto on trumped up charges?
Another funny thing in his writ up is that he wants a Truth & Reconciliation Commission to cover & examin our national history & in his list of assassinated politicians he refused to enlist the names of Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto & his two sons.
Then according to him as his father's funeral was such a grand one that showed what a great & loved leader he was. Had his father not stopped SZAB's children attend his funeral let alone the people; the reality of his statement would have been clearly exposed.
However, one point with which I am in agreement is where he states that external powers do commit conspiracies but it is the internal people who make them materialize. How True. BUT wasn't his father part just a similar conspiracy? So I guess it was not unfair when he was told that to find the answers to his questions he should look towards the Almighty.
In the closing paragraph Mr Haq had the audacity of justifying hid father's dictatorship, by calling him a benign dictator. Ask those who had to live with this benign dictatorship.
"If you once forfeit the confidence of your fellow citizens, you can never regain their respect and esteem...It is true that you may fool all of the people some of the time; you can even fool some of the people all of the time; but you can't fool... all of the people all of the time..."
We as people might be helpless infront of our bloody regimes but we aren't fools, so STOP mocking at our sanity but throwing light on the history of this country as it suits you.
Sunday, September 6, 2009
My yesterday's experience at my internship made me curse the genius who added this phenomena in the phraseology.
When human beings become customers, they loose most of their rationality & tend to become those irritating kids who are just not satisfied no matter what you give to shut-up.
The bank where I am interning is centrally connect to Karachi as their server is installed there. Yesterday, due to some unknown reason the system was not working (unknown because the IT dept at the Karachi head office thought best not to attend their phone & share in the bashing). Also as it was the last date for submitting the gas bills & people tend to wait for the last moment to get the things done our branch was in chaos.
A few was the very frequently statements thrown at us were:
1- Thoada system hamesha he down honda aay (Ur system is always down)
2- Karachi walayn nu kayo apna server samandar vich sut dain (Ask ur Karachi office to throw their server in the sea)
3- Me Karachi jate he apne panchon accounts band karwa don ga, koi customer relations ka dahan nahe ha tum logon ko ( I'll close all my five accounts as soon as I reach Karachi, you guys have no sense of customer relations)
Our operations manager turned himself into a cashier, the PBAs (Personal Banking Advisers) were filling out the slips, the internees were running all over the place dividing their time between floor timing (the most pathetic work as this position was the most vulnerable for customers bashing), attending phone calls & standing in line with the customers bills & cheques who were not interested or too important to stand in line with others AND STILL WE HAVE NO IDEA OF CUSTOMER RELATIONS......
This world is definitely not a very fair place.
Tuesday, September 1, 2009
But has the world really learnt its lesson from the past? With truck loads of books & movies high lighting the events of these wars ; the impact that they left on the survivors haven't stopped us from repeating our history without alteration. Instead we repeat it with additional cruelty.
World Wars 1 & 2 at least left survivors to mourn but with the latest technology in progress & the sole most popular business of arms around us, what sort of survivors are we gonna leave behind?
Friday, August 28, 2009
However, this post has nothing to do with any further details of my love-hate relationship with the subject. It is about the extent to which people are still connected to the age old hysteria of superstition.
A man in his late 40, decently dressed up came up to the desk next to where I, along with another internee was totalling some amounts & my calculator was giving me a hell of a time. Suddenly our ears picked up the sound of our next seat neighbor getting all charged up for getting the operational code as 420 for his new account. And he wanted it immediately changed. As this was not possible according to the system protocol he decided to close the account (whose checkbook had not yet arrived) & open another account so that he can get rid of that number.
Apart from the momentary laugh that we all enjoyed due to that customer's reaction to a mere number it also made me think that what difference does education make in such type of matters? The gentlemen was an educated person & it made no difference to him. What's lacking in our system (& I mean apart from the ratafication system which makes the foundation of our educational boards).
Wednesday, August 26, 2009
Tuesday, August 18, 2009
So it is written,
We shall live to see,
The day that’s been promised,
The day that’s been ordained;
The day when mountains of oppression,
Will blow up like wisps of cotton;
When the earth will dance
Beneath the feet of once enslaved;
And heavens will shake with thunder
Over the heads of tyrants;
And the idols in the House of God
Will be thrown out;
We the rejects of the earth,
Will be raised to a place of honour.
All crowns’ll be tossed in the air
All throwns’ll be smashed.
And God’s word will prevail,
He who is both present and absent
He who is beheld and is the beholder.
And truth shall ring in every ear,
Truth which is you and I,
We, the people will rule the earth
Which means you,which means I
Faiz Ahmed Faiz
Friday, August 14, 2009
Now a days we all are cursing our beauty in one way or the other. For once, let’s change our lenses & look at the situation from the Pakistan’s perspective. Surviving the dark times on the energy imparted by the glorious memories, the country misses its true lovers. What an ideal love story it had experienced. Her admirers were ready to go to any length to get her & after the happy union every possible measure was adopted to protect it. In return our soil stayed loyal in all its capacity.
Fast forwarding the story lets look at the present scenario. 60 percent of the nationals’ aren’t really concerned what happens to this country. Out of the rest who claim to be all conscious people are only concerned to the level to which they are affected, beyond that who cares. How many of us are practically active about the situation in Bajur & other similar areas? None of us; we don’t care if a part of us is being striped off us. It’s because our intensity of love is vanishing day by day. Most of us are waiting for or struggling for an opportunity to get out of here because this land no more fulfills our desires. This implies to both the so called leaders & the citizens (of all classes). No one believes in the following statement of a leader of this nation:
“Courage is in our blood, we are the children of a rich heritage. We shall succeed”.
Moving on the path that we are currently following how can we even think that this soil should reward us with more and more resources to exploit? Haven’t we been fed enough? If you close your eyes & skim through your attitude’s history I believe that someone who has the slightest concisions won’t be able meet his/her own eyes in the mirror. We have been getting more than we deserve & still our complain cell sees no limits. There are countries whose deprivation level exceeds our wildest imagination & yet they are loyal to their countries & serve it in the best of their abilities. And what do we do? We are ever ready to serve other countries but when it comes to our own land we want to be served like kings. If I am exaggerating, would anyone like to explain that why people belonging to upper middle class of Pakistan are found happily working at petrol pumps in the western countries?
It’s never too late to start afresh and change the direction of our destiny. At the moment our gorgeous beauty is demanding that its lovers; Believe where others doubt; Work where others refuse; Save where others waste & Stay where others quit. We don’t have to become philosophers who only interpret the world in different ways instead we need to become agents of change which is the need of the hour. Depending on our rulers is not the right decision because none of them has learned to become our leaders & there is an immense difference between a ruler & a leader. The following quote of George Bernand Shaw in my view point clarifies this difference:
“There are those who look at things the way they are, and ask why? I dream of things that never were & ask why not?”
Criticizing others won’t bring us solutions. And why criticize others when deep down we know that one of the reasons that we don’t take an active part in this situation is to avoid others criticism. This is a human instinct which leads us away from our proud destination of success. There are two successful ways of living. One is that you take someone as your guide & follow in his/her footsteps or you yourself become the guide for others & lead the way. As we quite clearly know that for us the first option is almost non-existent hence we all need to be pro-active & take up the second, more difficult path of life. This is the only way we can survive, rekindle our love for Pakistan & prove that, courage is in our blood, we are the children of a rich heritage & we shall succeed.
P.S: Written 4 my University mag. (Folio)
Tuesday, August 11, 2009
"The land of pure" where each day the sun rises with a new hope, with an enduring majesty as the rays of light flushing down towards the snow caped peaks of Himalaya's & Nanga parbat. A land where love finds a meaning in the heart warming hospitality of people.
A land where history & ancient civilization mystifies one's heart.
A land where spiritualism unveils its mystery at the shrines of sufi saints.
This will be the front of Islam.
This is the land I belong to,
This is the land I will die for &
This is the land that defines my identity.
As our Independence Day is on its way so the forwarded sms are all so full of optimism. Out of all those messages this one really touched me.
If we come to think of it, this completely defines our origin as a nation & what most of us believe in at bottom of our hearts. However, the reality checks give us a far different picture which cannot be AND should not be overlooked. But how to change this picture???
What most of us do is blame; something that our government is an expert. There are those who have lost hope & are leaving. Those who are left behind aren't interested in changing things around them & are by now I guess completed tuned to just adjust with the way things are.
If we desire to see a change, we better start taking the initial steps now because this mess cannot be cleared is a short span of time.
God Bless Pakistan.
Sunday, August 9, 2009
Friday, August 7, 2009
Thursday, August 6, 2009
Martin Luther King Jr.
Saturday, August 1, 2009
The root cause is the lack of proper education. Our educational system & content is not up to the International standards. More than half of the 54 percent population which we mark as the literate class is only capable of writing their own name leaving only around 10 percent people who are literate in the real sense. With the day night progress in the IT sector, products & services are delivered in a very much techno oriented manner. More than 70 percent of our population is not even remotely aware of these improvements.
Other contributing factors point the finger at the government. If you are part of so & so’s family tree or know so & so via so & so, you have nothing to worry about unemployment. However, those of us who reject this formula because a) they don’t know anyone & b) they are those lame ones who still believe in merit & justice, are the ones who are going to be interested in this article(as they have nothing else to do). Our former President in one of this interviews stated that we should not worry about the brain drain. As our country does not has enough resources we should let are people go & when the country will be back in gear these people will return to the land of pure. Unfortunately, the mother land never came back in her gear & at the present the chances don’t seem that bright. What Mr. Musharaf overlooked, was the burden this brain drain caused. These doctors, engineers, IT people, MBAs etcetra are educated here, get their training here but the fruit is enjoyed by others. What’s left for Pakistan is the leftover, those who were rejected or didn’t have the right resources.
While interviewing some of the locals we got to know that the majority stops their education after intermediate level only few continue with their bachelors. And they leave their jobs & prefer opening their own shops of grocery, drive rickshaw etc because their jobs don’t pay them more more than the minimal wage. In our view point all these young people should be taught the meaning of the quote “Don’t expect until & unless you deserve”. Though if you look at the circumstances its agreed that most of the blame resides on the government but unfortunately our generation X are no angels. They have diverted their energies in the wrong direction.
Exceptions do exist. Some of these have turned the odds in their favor & showed the world Some of the best examples of enterpernurship. One of these examples is Muhammad Azfar Ahsan (CEO of Nutshell Forum; country’s leading conference management and training resource organization, he had organized more than two hundred national and international conferences, seminars, training workshops and group discussions in Pakistan, Sri Lanka, Dubai and Bahrain). People like these should be inspiration enough for the rest of us to follow.
Margaret Mead said: “Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed it is the only thing that ever has”.
Therefor, its high time that we stop crying about what the majority does & change the south Asian pace with which things happen in our part of the world.
Wednesday, July 8, 2009
As stated earlier that I don't belong to MJ's fan club. However this part of his memorial caught me.
The thing that bothered me was some of the comments posted on youtube about him. They were humiliating. Isn't death time to make peace? Some people prove that homo sapians are the worst being on planet earth who are capable of inflicting maximum pain with great joy.
Saturday, July 4, 2009
United States is seen the world over as the leader of the world & this is one image that its government & people believe in very strongly. However, this position that they have occupied for so long has started to damage others & created mistrust for America in the minds & hearts of the rest of the world.
While today they are celebrating true democracy in their country & verbally proclaiming that they endorse & support it the world over, it is not a hidden fact that USA has been supporting dictatorships in countries where it suited its interests. And more dangerously supporting weak & dishonest democracies. Our own country being the biggest example.
Although we can't blame everything on USA. Every country is always going to watch for its own interests in the first place, if we allow them a soft target its our own fault.
I would suggest that when celebrating Americans should give few seconds & think about all those people who have just not been deprived of democracy but also of their basic human rights mainly because of the decisions of their government.
Friday, July 3, 2009
Sunday, June 28, 2009
Monday, June 22, 2009
However, last night the glory had returned after 17 years. Not a single shot was missed. I had the added responsibility of a friend who had to go for a dinner at the Golf club last night. She was being given updates after 2min. (Thank God the sms package still worked).
This was a victory we all were so desperate for & it was celebrated to the perfection. The people had forgotten about the miseries that engulf our lives in one way or the other. There was no hatred, no ethnic rivalry even the IDPs were celebrating. I just hope that as the international media covers the insanity that goes around us; it covers our celebration in the same manner so that the world knows that we are capable of celebrations as well.
As for our team WAY TO GO, the nation is proud of you. It was a perfect gift(as Younas Khan said that the cup is a gift to the nation from the team) in such times. AND yes who can ignore BOOM BOOM AFRIDI.......
Before going to bed I was tempted to complete the chapter of "The Rainmaker" by John Grisham. As my mp4 was laying with the book I tuned in to the Radio & almost every station was playing our patriotic numbers:
Dil Dil Pakistan
Hum han Pakistani etc.
& it REALLY REALLY FELT AWESOME....
Sunday, June 21, 2009
One thing on which everyone agreed & believed was that we should not give hope in any case. Yes, these are difficult times but then these are the very times when success is available if you are able to provide solutions.
Another focus point was the leadership. Here again examples were quoted about some of our great cooperate leaders which made me realize that we need to stop whining about the lack of leadership qualities of our people. A bit of organization is required to bring this talent to the for-front.
The role of a positive media was also discussed & during different presentations specially that of Badar Khushnood, Country Consultant Google Inc. Pakistan we got some very positives aspects of our country which I believe that our media has failed to promote. For example the fact that we are at number 3 when it comes to the usage of the internet even with one of the lowest literacy rate.
These were the three main points which turned our pessimistic approach to a more optimistic one for which I was personally quite glade…;-)
Now for small summaries of the topics which different speakers spoke on.
As the summit was divided into three sessions. I was not able to attend the first one as I was at that in the team which was handling the registration of the guests. The topics of that session were:
Recession, Survival & an Opportunity.
Managing in Turbulent Times-The way forward
The second session was a panel discussion on “The Leadership Challenge-Sustaining Growth., Expanding the Boundaries”, The panelist talked about different challenges that we all are facing not just in Pakistan but the world over & how with innovation these challenges should be faced. Every company will go through the cycle of good & bad times but it’s the way that these companies specifically their leadership’s reaction to such circumstances, that determines whether they are to survive of perish just like some of the very grand names that we have witnessed collapsing. During this session emphasis was also given on the use of blogging for discussions.
Mr. Haroon Bhatti (Director People Excellence & BPI, Telenor Pakistan) presented on “Why Change is Bad”. His main point was that most of the time change does not produces the intended results & also the company does not reviews whether the change introduced has been approved by the customers or not. He said that his statement was not to be taken as a thumb rule but that according to his observation & experience, as in organizations personal interests exceed the organizations interests.
This was followed by Mr Tahir Basharat Cheema (Managing Director, PEPCO) who talked on “Efficient Energy Use in Turbulent Times”. He gave a much elaborated presentation loaded with statistics about the past & present situation. He also told the audience as to what are the measures that he is taking to improve this situation & what potential exists.
Mr. Fredrik Nillson (Managing Director, Oriflame Pakistan (Pvt.) Limited was the first speaker of the third session. His topic was “Harnessing Sustainable Growth in Emerging Markets”. He took the example of his own company & explained that it is not compulsory to follow the pattern which everyone is following. Being a cosmetics company their main marketing style is by the word of mouth & their stronghold is direct sales. Adopting this approach has proved fruitful for them & they have invested happily in Pakistan & don’t regret the decision.
Next was Miss Sheeza Mohsin Dhanani (CEO, Complete Solutions & Leadership Strategist, USA) & her topic was “Managing Talent & Organizational Conflict during a Downturn”. In her interactive presentation she first laid the ground work by discussing the common patterns which we adopt for conflict management. Then she cleared the difference between what’s the right strategy & what’s the wrong one. The conclusion was that you should not just be depending on one individual which in the most cases is the boss to look after the conflicts. Instead every individual should develop this habit to become a conflict manager. Adopting this patter will help in the efficiency of the work.
She was followed by Dr. Khalid Javed Chawdhry (Member; Board of Trustee, TiE Global Inc). His topic was “Entrepreneurship opportunities in the Downturn”. He’s a MBBS doctor & a banker as well. He served in USA for 26 years & then came back to Pakistan. His focus was how to exploit the opportunities which still exists it’s only the matter of exploiting them. Answering to a question he said that his concern was that we have a lot of talent but the problem is of financing & he is concentrating on this aspect.
Mr. Badar Khushnood (Country Consultant, Google Inc., Pakistan) presented on “Marketing in Challenging Times”. He was the one who gave the figures on where Pakistan stands on internet usage etc. Focus on blogging & other tools related to the IT were his focus as new mediums for marketing as the trends are changing.
The ceremony was closed with the address by Sartaj Aziz.
This was the first time that this conference was taking place in Lahore. Before this event has always taken place in Karachi. Hopefully everyone left the Crystal Hall of Pearl Continental Hotel, Lahore full of optimism as when we were entering the hotel the addition of security measures was a sight. The change in the entrance gate, sand filled drums etc. However, after listening & interacting in with people who were full of hope & ready to materialize their imagination the mood changed with a 180 degree angle.
Thursday, June 18, 2009
The Pakistan report card by Fasi Zaka
Mal-Icky heads security in a troubled nation. Gill-Lonely is the isolated premier.
Mal-Icky: I have solved the problem of the lethal drones.
Gill-Lonely: Good, no more needless deaths.
Mal-Icky: Yes, both Sher Afghan Niazi and Wasi Zafar have promised never to speak on television again.
Gill-Lonely: What on earth have you done! I was speaking of the American drones. What incompetence!
Mal-Icky: Sticks and stones may break my bones but names will never hurt me. At least what you just called me is not as bad as the name they would shout out at me in England.
Gill-Lonely: What was that?
Gill-Lonely: What were you doing working in a restaurant?
Mal-Icky: I was gathering intelligence.
Gill-Lonely: What did you learn?
Mal-Icky: That pakoras don't cook well in canola oil.
Gill-Lonely: Why did you go into exile, was it a matter of principle?
Mal-Icky: Yes, the principles of NAB.
Gill-Lonely: So what are you doing about Pakistan's most dangerous enemy?
Gill-Lonely: No! No! No! The Taliban!
Mal-Icky: Oh them, yes I am doing everything right now to defeat them.
Gill-Lonely: OK. So who is battling the Taliban?
Mal-Icky: The army.
Gill-Lonely: And who is fighting the expansion of the Taliban into new areas?
Mal-Icky: The locals.
Gill-Lonely: Where do we get our intelligence about the Taliban from?
Mal-Icky: The Americans.
Gill-Lonely: And pray tell what is it that you can do if everyone else but you are fighting them?
Mal-Icky: I can make you a nice pakora. Wait! Wait, stay still! I see a foreign hand in this room!
Gill-Lonely: Don't worry about that. It's just the president pulling his puppeteer strings on me.
Mal-Icky: Sir, I don't like the tone of this conversation, it seems you are suggesting I have done nothing.
Gill-Lonely: Well, what have you done?
Mal-Icky: I have provided jobs to the poor IDPs.
Gill-Lonely: Nonsense. Give me one example.
Mal-Icky: Sir, I have reinstated all of our displaced illegal appointments to the IB under our previous tenure removed by Nawaz Sharif.
Gill-Lonely: Well done! So what is your long-term policy?
Mal-Icky: Strategic depth.
Mal-Icky: I want us to build huge underground bunkers to hide from the Taliban.
Gill-Lonely: We have captured all these terrorists, why aren't you releasing any sensitive information to the public?
Mal-Icky: But I already have, Shoaib Akhtar has genital warts.
Gill-Lonely: Listen, do you have any special qualifications for this job?
Mal-Icky: Yes, in class two I came second in the hundred-metre race.
Gill-Lonely: How on earth is that helpful?
Mal-Icky: It's how I escaped justice last time around.
Gill-Lonely: And now?
Mal-Icky: It's how I escape the anger of the people.
Gill-Lonely: You don't take this security business very seriously.
Mal-Icky: I do, I have 64 guards at my house.
Gill-Lonely: But what about the people of this country?
Mal-Icky: For them I have the most powerful force in the country.
Gill-Lonely: Which is?
And so they decide not to eat more pakoras, because they will be hard to find in Dubai.
Simply loved it......
(The was originally published in The News)
Wednesday, June 17, 2009
Finally, when I got to see the movie two days back I was not at all disappointed as in most of the cases where everyone just loves the movie. It was full of emotions which you could relate to.
However, the thing which is worrying me is that the good old BOLLYWOOD is going to make a copy of it with the following cast:
On the last count(Arjun Rampal)
I guess we all can imagine the results...;-(
Monday, June 15, 2009
Being a part of Rotaract myself this video is not just a nice promotional video but it also revives the spirits of the existing Rotaractors & Rotarions.
Wednesday, June 10, 2009
Q-Looking around at the world today,what gives you the most hope?
A- I would have to say it is the restoration of America as a super power, in many aspects of that word. At the moment, we are still a superpower militarily, since our military budget equals the combined budget of all other nations on earth; & despite current troubles,we still have a powerful economic machine. But I would hope & expect that in the future, we will once again be seen as the champions of peace in the world. My goal would be for any nation on earth that had a problem to naturally say, "Why don't we go to Washington to settle this, because the United States is the champion of peace, or the world's leader in human rights, or because that greatest nation leads the world in protecting the environment & combating global warming". These are the kinds of things that I hope & pray will occur in the future. This would make us a superpower in every aspect of the word: for peace, for democracy, for freedom,for protecting the environment, for alleviating suffering & for championing human rights.
Sunday, May 31, 2009
Michael Heart's song "We will not go down" is a song dedicated to the people of Gaza but I think that its meaning perfectly fits the struggles of other oppressed nations as well. AND the present situation of our Northern areas to some extent.
For mp3 version:
Saturday, May 30, 2009
Thursday, May 28, 2009
My day started of with a hectic schedule as the last week of my semester is on. Around 10:15am sittting in an empty class room(turned common room), the door suddenly burst open & the windows started rattling. This continued for around 35secs. One of my friends responded by saying "Zalzala aya ha" (Is it an earthquake) & we all gave the most weird looks that we could muster. And as soon as we had slummed back into our world of laptops & group studies the phones started ringing one by one with the news of the real world. ,
However, the mood of the room wasn't affected much. Some of the spontaneous reactions were:
2-"Kahan pe huwa"
3-"Kitne loog mare?"
4-"Chalo jee, yeh kam phr se suru ho gaya"
AND then we were back in r own worlds.
My mother is a doctor & works in Fatima Jinnah Medical College which is quite near the location of the blast & was also affected(this I came to know after I came home)
The first slight realization I had of the situation was when some of my relatives called me, worried about my mom as they were not able to get her on her cell-phone. Getting worried I too started trying her cell but to the same result. I was calmed down by my father's call informing that all was well concerning my mother.
Being an Anatomist my & going through similar situations(FIA blast, 5th Oct. 2005) she is able to handle t1he stress attached with such calamity. This time around SHE out of all the people was shaken to the core. Her narration of the situation made me feel ashamed of our reaction.
We are now no more bothered until & unless it effects us. Aren't we ourselves helping the preparators of this chaos achieve what they want? ,This desensitization of our Nation is Insanity.
Sunday, May 24, 2009
This definition is given by the Urban Dictionary.
P.S: After creating hatred & disunity among different provinces our rulers(they don't deserve to be called leaders) brag of National Reconciliation?????? The people of Pakistan are with the IDPs & our JAWAN(soldiers of PAK Army).
Saturday, May 23, 2009
This video was supposed to be shown at the end of our mock trial presentation of PLSC 101 course BUT unfortunately the laptop's media player refused to cooperate & we ended up showing it without the background music.
Friday, May 22, 2009
The age of some houses is more than 700 years.
Wednesday, May 20, 2009
Apart from the fact that I am in 100% agreement with her analysis, the thing that most stunned me in this post were the comments made by different readers.
As they haven't used their original names, their exact identities(meaning the country they belong to) can not be determined. However, the content of some of the comments shows that they belong to the people living in complete ignorant atmosphere of their supper power countries.
I mean has this fast exchange of knowledge been a phenomena applied only to us???? Or the ruling class of these countries so easily able to fool their people????
People of these power hunger countries think that their governments are doing all this for the GREATER GOOD....& who's gonna tell these nut heads about the benefits that they get. What about the reality check that the whole world is suffering so that these people can have their artificial standard of living????What about the oil supplies & the rest of the resources which are the under-hand causes of this present chaos???
A lot of question marks....
AND the biggest JOKE...they don't know our country's exact location on the map......Pakistan in Middle East?????The biggest WTF moment of the day.
Tuesday, May 19, 2009
The original article published in The News can be viewed on:
By Rauf KlasraKAHUTA:
Family members of martyred Captain Najam Riaz have made a shocking disclosure about the alleged involvement of an important administrative official of Malakand in the killing of four SSG commandos at the hands of Taliban last week.
The heroic tale of brave commandos reveals how the valiant soldiers had broken the necks of eight Taliban, once they realised that they were about to be beheaded. The mother of Shaheed Captain Najam told The News while sitting in her village house, amid tears in her eyes, that she would have even sacrificed ten sons for the sake of Pakistan and she was proud of her 24-year old son, who before going to Swat had told her not to weep over her body as he knew he was going on a journey of martyrdom.
“Our Shaheed captain told that the important official of Malakand had come to meet the Taliban when they were in their possession. The official considered to be darling of the Taliban had told his friends to keep the four SSG commandos with them but return their weapons”, one of the family members of the martyred Captain told The News.
The father of Captain who retired from army as a Hawaldar demanded of the government to take action against the former official of Malakand whose collaboration with the Taliban resulted in beheading of his son along with three companions.
The family members of the martyred captain also claimed that they had come to know that actually Sufi Mohammad had directed the militants to kill the SSG commandos after his own son Kifiyatullah was killed during the operation.
Earlier, Parliamentary Affairs Minister Dr Babar Awan visited the village of Captain Najam. He went there on the direction of Prime Minister Yusuf Raza Gilani to lay flowers on his grave and offer condolences to his family.
Dr Awan himself belongs to Kahuta. The family of the martyred captain made some unusual demands to compensate the loss of their son. “Please ask your PM to set up a cadet college in Kahuta in the name of martyred Najam, set up a hospital and construct the road,” demanded his father, sisters and mother.
When Dr Awan asked whether they needed something for themselves, they all said, they did not need anything rather they had given their son for the sake of Pakistan.
A large crowd of people gathered when Dr Awan reached there in the remote village Kalhut-located at one and a half hours drive from Islamabad. Over 100 people of this small town demanded of the minister not to halt the operation against the militants and eliminate them.
Even the parents and sisters of the martyred captain gave their voice to this demand that operation should be continued and the sacrifice of their son should not be wasted. When Dr Awan returned to Islamabad late night, he immediately talked to the PM Gilani about the demand of the parents of the martyred captain and Gilani announced to approve the college in Kahuta, which might greatly make the whole family happy.
The family told the heroic tale of these four detained SSG commandos who had refused to die without putting any resistance, once they came to know that the NWFP government would not take any interest in their release.
The visit of the former official of Malakand to Taliban asking them just to return the weapons and keep the captives had made them understand what was in store. The only way left with these brave soldiers was to fight back and should not give up. As their captors got the message from their top leadership to eliminate the SSG commandos, the preparation started to tighten them with rope so they could be beheaded.
But as the captors came close to them in the room where they were detained, these commandos suddenly jumped at the eight Taliban. Within seconds, the commandos broke their necks. But two Taliban guards standing outside rushed inside and sprayed them with Kalashnikov bullets, which led to their instant martyrdom.
“We are proud of our commandos that they did not die like cowards. They fought back and killed 8 Taliban as they went down fighting like real heroes, one of the family members of the captain Najam said.
Monday, May 18, 2009
Politics forms the roots of every aspect of our lives in this age of globalization. Extensively cross knitted with economy, politics is able to influence all other areas from cultural, environmental to even the most personal decisions that we make now a days. Therefore, whenever we analyze an event we should first & foremost try to see the hidden political engineering behind it.
Looking back in history we will be able to the pattern of power accumulation. In the early years of civilization when the Kings used to rule, historians narrate that the adjacent areas were taken over by force. The reason behind such occupation was to attain power over other areas so that the resources of that region could be utilized for the Monarch’s own use. The main purpose behind wars in those times was that of accumulation of resources.
Times might have changed but this desire of resources remains the same. However, today the decision of going to war is not that easy due to the presence of the nuclear weapons. Thus, the new way of acquiring resources is trough the control of economy with the help of political manipulation.
Capitalism is the driving force behind globalization, as capitalist are the ones who benefit from the growing globalization. Through the increase of globalization capitalist get access to bigger markets for their products. The incorporation of the ideology of capitalism in the masses has overpowered their loyalty towards their independent countries. Now everything has been commodified; i.e. purchasable through cash. To the extent, that man power has also been labeled under this title.
The modern world is divided into three parts:
• Core States
• Semi-peripheral States
• Peripheral States
The core states comprise of 20% of the world population but control & utilize 80% of the resources while the peripheral states which comprise almost 80% of the world population get only around 20% of the resources & most of the time even less. Semi-peripheral states on the other hand are assisting the core states in their illegal pursuits with the intention of getting a share in the prize.
These core states in order to maintain their control have founded organizations as UNO, World Bank. IMF, etc. These organizations encourage the ideas of soft borders & one world government. If such measures are implemented (which is the biggest agenda with the core states & their dummy organizations) will only be benefiting the multinationals which will indirectly take their profits to the banks of the core states whose economy will flourish.
Living in developing countries we assume that all the people living in the core stats have quite comfortable lives. However, the reality is not that sweet. The multinationals look for cheap labor therefore they offer jobs to the developing nations. Although this brings investment to the countries in the long run the benefits are minimal if any. Secondly if we are offered jobs because of cheap labor rates that means that some one in the core state has lost his/her job & is not able to afford the necessities of life. This is the reason that we saw those massive protests during the G-20 summit.
The country & the common people are the victims of the decisions of the investors. Another example we have is the backing out of the Nike Company from Pakistan with the lame excuse of child labor. The reality is that now China offers much cheaper labor therefore they shifted their contract to China. However, the irony here is that the company which was dealing with this specific order in Pakistan still has that contract as the company in China also belongs to the same owner. These are the miracles of globalization.
When the economy of a country is being controlled the rest follow suit which explains the rapid estrangement of the locals from their own culture & adaptation of a culture which is turning into a universal one. Being a business student my self, in our marketing course we were taught that now the youth all over the world follow the same culture & norms hence to target them with a product does not require the differentiation of cultures.
The present hue & cry over the increasing terrorism is also part of the bigger political game. If we scan these situations we will come to the ultimate conclusion that all this is to cover up for the under lying issue of resources. These terrorists are the creation of the agencies of USA & Pakistan when the whole world united against Russia. They were claiming that they are the ambassadors of freedom & want to help get Afghanistan their freedom. However, the real issue was that the capitalists wanted to crush the socialist. Then if you consider the case of Iraq; oil reserves was the reason for its targeting. These ambassadors of human rights were the cause of the death of 20 lakh children because they were not allowed to purchase medicines.
African countries are being exploited not just for their resources but also for experimentation purposes. Pharmaceutical companies use Africans as genie pigs for their drugs. The so called aid sent to them is nothing but a pack of lies as most of the medicines sent there are expired. This topic was profoundly depicted in the movie “The Constant Gardner”.
This much gap in the living standards will eventually give rise to extensive revolting from the deprived people or countries. Examples, of which we see now a days, in the form of increased rate of violence. It is no secrete that anti- American sentiments are on the rise especially in the Muslim countries as Americans are on the forefront in creating a stereotyped image of Muslims.
Globalization has created many benefits but the hard reality is that those benefits are limited to only a very few percentage of the people. The living standards of a limited number has improved. With the passage of time the middle class is vanishing & when only two extreme cases will be left i.e. the upper & lower class, a fierce clash will be inevitable.
People react differently to different statements regarding globalization. Likewise, this talk about improved status of women looks great in theory; e.g. the Beijing declaration. The realty remains that women still don’t have equal rights. All over the globe women are paid less as compared to men for the same jobs. Discrimination in the work place is quite prevalent.
Globalization has positively impacted the lives due to the improvement in technology but as far as politics is concerned the overall impacts are anything but positive.