Khaled Ahmed was born in 1943 in Jallandhar during the siege of Stalingrad. He has been an opinion writer based in Pakistan for the past 40 years. Over his decades of experience, he has worked for The Pakistan Times, The Nation, The Frontier Post, The Friday Times and The Daily Times, three of which have been closed down either permanently or temporarily. He is now consulting editor at Newsweek Pakistan, based in Lahore. Ahmed graduated from Government College Lahore during the 1965 war with India with an MA (Honours) on the roll of honour, along with a diploma in German from Punjab University. In 1970, he received a diploma in Russian (Interpretation) from Moscow State University. In 2006, he wrote the book, Sectarian War: Sunni-Shia Conflict in Pakistan at the Woodrow Wilson Centre in Washington DC.
Khaled Ahmed writes: The US under Donald Trump, India under Narendra Modi, the UK under Boris Johnson, Turkey under Recep Tayyip Erdogan — and most East European states who maltreat “refugees” and shun foreigners — foreshadow the misfortunes of tomorrow. Pakistan is no exception.
Before India’s “love jihad”, Pakistan found its way to getting rid of its Christians. Blasphemy was pinned on them with the confidence that no judge would let them off the hook, with pious crowds demanding death outside his court.
There are many “parties” working as “non-state actors” who may dislike your reports and come after you. In the interior of the province of Sindh, a journalist can be kidnapped and killed by an offended landlord called “wadero”.
The surrender of the state to Saeed was a blend of two contingencies — the evolution of the ideology of the state under Islam, and the drive of a revisionist policy vis-à-vis India.
Kamala Harris is an American growing up in a milieu where racism was the first battle she had to fight. She is sure to look at the plight of human rights in both India and Pakistan under mounting religious discrimination.
Walsh sums it up like this: “To me, Pakistan resembled one of those old Japanese puzzle boxes, comprised of secret compartments and hidden traps, which can only be opened in a unique, step-by-step sequence."
China, India’s largest trading partner — $94 billion both ways — has to use the roundabout route through Southeast Asia to transport its goods. Yet, Pakistan is on the verge of changing its identity from a war-fighting nation to a trading one.
Pakistan is going through a period of “verbal degradation”. Politicians for and against the government employ a language often described by themselves as gali-galoch.
The dilemma for whoever deals with post-US Afghanistan is the fragmentation of the Afghan warriors divided into bands, Pakhtuns on the one hand and the non-Pakhtun on the other.
Corruption has always been the main flaw of a state made unstable by its unrealistic revisionism. Imran Khan has added to that an abysmally low-grade political discourse.
Pakistan is putting up a wire-fence on the Durand Line while the Taliban — Afghan and Pakistani — take potshots at the soldiers assigned to erect the fence. Yet, when the deluge of refugees comes, fleeing the exemplary bravery of the Islamic soldiers, it will be the children and women who will suffer most.
If the Taliban take over from the Afghan government, they will have a tough time deciding which group of warriors will have the lead in governance.
In the first 60 days of 2020, as many as 73 incidents of rape were reported in Lahore, including five gang-rape cases — 10 cases of gang-rape were registered in the whole of 2019.
Nuclear but economically bankrupt, Pakistan needs a lot of “flexibility” during this period of the grand split within the Muslim world.
Not long ago the mausoleum of Data Ganj Bakhsh was suicide-bombed in Lahore, where not long ago Hindus, Sikhs and Muslims lived peacefully together and accepted the mystic saint as the guardian spirit of the city.
The symbiosis of religions under the singing saint in Sindh lasted three centuries.
Stalin fought against fascism but then created an ideological state, which was not much different from Hitler’s Germany. Pakistan is like Caliban. It sees its face in the mirror and doesn’t like what it sees.
Khaled Ahmed writes: Imran Khan must worry about Pakistan’s poor-quality manpower and consequently its poor-quality industrial base. Chinese projects under China Pakistan Economic Corridor face this problem while Saudi Arabia is persuaded to ignore Pakistan and invest in India to diversify its oil-based economy.
Khaled Ahmed writes: Pakistan and India have changed their maps, if that gives any satisfaction to the affected people, but they must strive for the normalisation of relations needed in the region.
Khaled Ahmed writes: Pakistan has been in two minds about recognising Israel, especially after India revived its almost dead relationship in 1992 and proceeded to trade with it in the high-tech sector without creating any negative reaction among Pakistan’s Arab friends.
The general directive for textbooks implies that Pakistan is for the Muslims alone
Teachers labelled “liberal” and “secular” are the first to be rendered jobless under the looming reform. Nuclear physicist Pervez Hoodbhoy and another “science” teacher have been sacked from a Lahore university as a foretaste of what is to come.
Pakistan has constitutionally ousted the Ahmadi Muslims from state nationality. They are not Muslims in Pakistan. They become Muslims the moment they step into, let’s say, India that has not apostatised them.
Khaled Ahmed writes: Uzair is hopefully the last of the Baloch dacoits of Lyari, Karachi’s largest district. If he gets his comeuppance, it will be the end of a classic Sindhi interface with the Baloch legend that linked Karachi to Balochistan on both sides of the Iran-Pakistan border.
Khaled Ahmed writes: Pakistan must recall the golden age when Muslims and Hindus benefited from each other. Religion has got Muslims their Pakistan but mathematics remains the weakest subject taught in their schools and universities.