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September 2016

The making of Pakistan’s Putin

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Ayaz Amir

raheel-sharif“The leader must aim high, see big, judge widely, thus setting himself apart from the ordinary people who debate in narrow confines.” General Charles de Gaulle.

I think – and I could be dead wrong and if I am, let me go to Sehwan Sharif to atone for my misjudgment – the most important event in Pakistan’s recent history will happen post-November when Gen Raheel Sharif puts up his spurs and a successor takes his place.

I can bet anything that when his departure ceremony takes place in General Headquarters and he formally relinquishes his command there will be on his face not the wan, wistful look that Gen Musharraf had when he was handing over his baton to Gen Kayani. Musharraf was looking back on his years of glory and was uncertain about the future, correctly as it soon turned out, Kayani, his anointed successor, in effect becoming his Brutus.Read More »The making of Pakistan’s Putin

The 14-second stare

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rafiazakariyaRishiraj Singh is the excise commissioner in the Indian state of Kerala. In the most recent photograph of him that I could find, he sports the khaki uniform of his position and a formidable moustache. In the last half of August, however, Rishiraj Singh has become known for something else, an edict against men who stare at women.

While addressing a small group of people in the city of Kochi on women’s safety, Singh declared that any man found staring at a woman for more than 14 seconds could be put in jail. Since India is a country of men who like to stare, his statement provoked immediate attention and ire; the Indian newspaper India Express labelled the statement ‘absurd’ and included an interview with a lawyer who said that there was no such law.

Others largely took the same tone: how dare Indian men be threatened with imprisonment for staring at Indian women. In the words of one Indian attorney: “There is no such provision in any law of this country and there cannot be such a mindless provision of law in any other country of the world. Period.” The message to women, Indian and otherwise: it’s a man’s world and staring at women must necessarily be a part of it.Read More »The 14-second stare

New Islamabad Airport to open from 14th August 2016

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Associated Press of Pakistan

The new Islamabad international airport will be operational by Aug 14 next year as 82 per cent of the work on the project has been completed.

“I will inaugurate the new airport on Aug 14, 2017,” said Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif while chairing a meeting on aviation affairs.

He was briefed on the status and progress of work on airports in different parts of the country, including Bannu and Mansehra.

The prime minister was informed that efforts were being made to complete the airport project within the allocated financial resources.

The project was divided into three main packages — airside, passenger terminal and landside.Read More »New Islamabad Airport to open from 14th August 2016