March 5, 2009

March madness-Ikram Sehgal

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Salman Taseer’s hand-picked police hierarchy failed to pre-empt the well-coordinated terrorist attack on the Sri Lankan cricket team. This ambush was to be expected. With police diverted from their given duties for political reasons, one should expect such disaster. Sacking the democratic govt was bad enough, why change the entire police structure? Many brave police jawans lost their lives saving the Sri Lankan players, few were injured, some seriously. Will anyone be taken to task for this most severe security lapse, virtually destroying Pakistan’s already precarious reputation as a safe destination? Given that the stakes for the future of Pakistan cricket were already high, this incident has probably put paid to international sports events in Pakistan. How can one ever begin to apologize to the Sri Lankans for this unforgivable failure? They had been brave beyond compare to come to Pakistan in such a situation despite all the dire warnings.Read More »March madness-Ikram Sehgal

The Great Game —Mahmud Sipra

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mehmoodsipraMore and more, the American sensed a tendency to forget that the world was just a chessboard on which the fates of the little countries were dictated by the exigencies of the play and that the strategy of the play itself was to maintain a balance

We live in dangerous times. Even the
simple and innocent pastime of watching a cricket match is no longer possible, and now, in all probability, won’t be for a very long time. It is safer and perhaps less hazardous to just stay at home and play a game of chess. This short excerpt is from a novel I wrote a long time ago. The title and the book has less to do with chess and more to do with that other Great Game that has continued to be played out in our region for more than a century. Only the players keep changing, the terrain remains pretty much the same. Any similarities that you may pick up with the present times, I may point out, are purely incidental, but intentional nonetheless.
Read More »The Great Game —Mahmud Sipra