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Abbas Zaidi

Adiala angels, Baloch bodies and Punjabi conscience

“Monday’s appearance in the Supreme Court (SC) of the missing Adiala prisoners,” wrote a columnist, “was a reminder of the human aspect of this story, providing the media with direct access to the sadness and horror of the lives of Pakistan’s missing people. As such it was a rare public manifestation of the lack of…

Zardari is a career

“Pakistan’s nuclear assets are not safe as long as Zardari exists [Zardari ke hotay huay],” said Shah Mehmood Qureshi a couple of weeks ago. This is gutter politics based upon shameless posturing. By making this claim, Qureshi has proved that he has the genes of his father who was a collaborator of General Zia, Pakistan’s…

Hajj concludes ‘peacefully’ with bloody batons

Hajj is a great opportunity for freedom of expression and a great opportunity to breathe freedom in the holiest Muslim place in the world. But then freedom is anathema to the House of Saud According to AFP and SPA news agencies, Saudi Crown Prince Nayef bin Abdel Aziz has hailed the ‘success’ of this year’s…

Criminal cricketers and their accomplices

The three cricketers are proven guilty and are thus criminals. They are shameless too. They never accepted their crime. Amir did confess, but only when it was too late and that too on the advice of his lawyer. Now that corruption charges have been proved against Salman Butt, Mohammad Asif, and Mohammad Amir, some Pakistanis…

JI-USIP Report: Pakistan Elite’s Mindless Quest for Lebensraum

Abandon hope all ye who enter here (Dante Alighieri) These past few weeks Pakistan’s print and electronic media has been awash with articles and talk shows vociferously supporting “Pakistan, the United States and the End Game in Afghanistan: Perceptions of Pakistan’s Foreign Policy Elite” produced by Islamabad-based Jinnah Institute (JI) and United States Institute of…

Did someone say “Dr General-CMLA Ziaul Haq” too?

Ninety-nine percent of Pakistani (electronic and print) media (Urdu as well as English) is right wing, and 100 percent of it has run amok in fury over an honorary doctorate awarded to Interior Minister Rehman Malik by Governor Sindh Ishratul Ebad Khan. A newspaper editorialised its anger thus: “The huge smile on ‘Dr’ Malik’s face…

Supreme Court’s Karachi verdict

No individual, party, or group (excepting Jamaat-e-Islami) has tried to read deeper into the Supreme Court’s verdict on Karachi’s law and order problem. It seems politically correct to shower praise on the verdict and express the desire to implement the guidelines given therein. The verdict, however, fails to address the real causes of intense violence…

For God’s sake!

If possession of liquor, and not its consumption, is a crime, Odho should face justice. The question is: is possessing two bottles of liquor such a big crime that the Chief Justice of Pakistan feels forced to take a suo motu action? In March 1977, Zulfikar Ali Bhutto spoke to the people of Lahore for…

Colonial Crime, Postcolonial Justice

On what basis can a colonial crime be decided in a postcolonial context? The court that indicted Ilmuddin was a British colonial court; it had a colonial jurisprudential logic and legality. Now the entire paradigm has changed. The crown has been replaced by the crescent. The Lahore High Court (LHC) has accepted a petition requesting…