Homeless In Vancouver

Having grown up in Pakistan before moving to Canada,  homelessness and panhandling were not alien concepts to me. Like any developing country, the number of people who roam the streets without food and shelter were, and still remain astronomical over there. This didn’t make the revelation of a homelessness crisis in Vancouver easy to digest…

My Pakistan Cricket Romance

It was 1992, and I was seven. We were living in Goth Machi at that time, near the border of Punjab and Sindh. I remember Moin Khan’s winning boundary in the semi-final, and Wasim Akram dismissing Chris Lewis. I wasn’t old enough to comprehend what had transpired when Imran Khan eventually lifted the trophy, or…

PTM : New Movement In an Old Pakistan

My father used to work for an organization that would transfer him across different cities in Pakistan every few years. Not as regularly as military men, but regularly enough for me to have attended 3 separate schools in 3 separate cities by the time I was in grade 11. When I graduated from University, I…

The rise of Bilawal Bhutto Zardari

In the midst of the political tussle between the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) and the Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N), the Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP) has been a distant observer for the large part. For a party with rock solid ideological roots, this is not a healthy sign. For a party that has historically been Pakistan’s most potent left-wing force…

No insight from B.C. NDP as they approve Site C Dam

There are times when the winds of change blow. Times when darkness appears to be distant, and the bastion of light seems to be on the horizon. Much like a poet who has found its long lost muse. Much like a romantic who has found new love. There are also times when you think the NDP…

The Housing Crisis & Canada

After years of stagnate wages and rising costs for everything from housing to education, many Canadians are deep in debt, with very little money saved. The family debt-to-income ratio in 1993 was 90 per cent. In 2017, it had soared to over 174 per cent. A recent Ipsos survey found that over 50 per cent…

Jean Swanson Has Achieved Victory In Defeat

On Saturday night, the first by-election in Vancouver since 1992 came to a conclusion. In one way, it was history repeating itself. In most other ways, it wasn’t. In terms of similarities, a Non-Partisan Association’s (NPA) candidate emerged victorious, as was the case in 1992. Back then it was Lynne Kennedy, now it is Hector Bremner. Unlike…

Pakistan and the Ahmaddiya Community

We have been here. This is not the first, nor will this be the last time. The Ahmadiyya community is under attack again. Surprised? You shouldn’t be. Remember Ashfaq Ahmed, the veterinary? Remember the chakwal mosque burning? Remember the signs outside Hafeez Centre in Lahore? Remember the US based doctor, Mehdi Ali Qamar? Remember Professor…

ISIS and Pakistan

There is the lush screen scenery. There are the picturesque Margalla Hills. There are the curve-friendly roads on these hills that remind one of Vital Signs and Junaid Jamshed. There is the crisp and cool weather. There is a particular calm never found in other major cities of the country. Then there is the Lal Masjid – the antithesis of everything in Islamabad –…

Kashmir: The perfect combination of Vital Signs and EP

Despite being an avid music lover, I’ve stopped following contemporary Pakistani music for quite a while now. It would not be incorrect to claim that things took a wrong turn ever since Rohail Hyatt left Coke Studio. However, the recently concluded Pepsi Battle of the Bands has changed that. And it really is down to one band alone…