Sarfraz Ahmed – Bringing ‘Honor’ Back Home

Before you start reading this I must tell you this. I’m an ex-cricket fan. I had stopped following Pakistani cricket a long time ago. But it wasn’t always like this.

Back in the days, I used to be a kid full of dreams and hopes for Team Green. I was that kid who stayed on the janamaz and prayed for her team to win the 1999 World Cup finale but that dint happen. All my dreams were broken and shattered into a thousand pieces at first and then a million when Pakistan lost the T20 World Cup against Inhdia a few years ago. That was it for me. The breaking point. I stopped watching cricket entirely except for the important matches, especially Pak VS Ind.

Fortunately things took a 360 turn this year. All thanks to our Captain Sarfraz Ahmed, my faith in our team has been restored. And not just me Sarfraz Ahmed has managed to bring happiness pride and honor to the entire Pakistani nation, something that we’ve been longing for all these years. CW2017 will definitely be remembered as one of the greatest milestone in Pakistan’s history and for making an achievement this great, Sarfraz Ahmed deserves all the love, honor and respect that he’s getting.

Taking the lead in this regard was JS Bank, who recently awarded the Captain with a BMW in Geo TV’s Dil Dil Ramzan show hosted by Wasim Akram and Shoaib Akhter. Check out the complete video here. https://www.facebook.com/JSBankLtd/videos/1383479758411340/

Goes without saying how amazing and timely this move was. Kudos to JS Bank for being the first one the honor Sarfraz and I hope that numerous other brands follow in their footstep. Amen to that. Join in the conversation on the hashtag #JSHonorsSarfraz and share your love and support for him.

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When UK met Pakistan at KLF London

KLF London 3

I have been attending Karachi Literature Festival for last 2 years and all I can say about it is – I TOTALLY LOVE IT!

I admire how the entire event is been put up and the participation of people just reinstates my faith in literature.

When I heard that KLF has decided to celebrate 70 years of Pakistan in London, I was overwhelmed by the idea.

Pakistan and UK share a special bond since ages and literature is one major aspect of that bond.

Although I was in Karachi, I followed KLF’s London launch by the minute.

The very successful, Karachi Literature Festival was held at the Royal Festival Hall of the Southbank Centre as a part of their annual festival Alchemy in London. The vision of the event was to celebrate Pakistan’s modern culture along with its rich history and culture on the 70th anniversary of the country’s independence. Known as Pakistan’s biggest literary event – KLF brought writers, scholars and artists from various backgrounds, creative traditions and academic disciplines together to portray contemporary Pakistani literature and writers.

KLF London 1The event was organized by Oxford University Press (OUP) in collaboration with the Southbank Centre, Bloomsbury Pakistan (London) and Rukhsana Ahmed.

There were around 20 parallel sessions encircling panel discussions, mushaira, poetry recitals, talks and performances. A broad range of themes and ideas related to Pakistan’s literature, arts and culture were discussed, 70 leading Pakistan-origin international writers, critics, journalists, scholars and artists participated.

The best part was that children were also kept in regard and Jungly Jadoogars presented an immersive theatre piece for them. An animated film by Fauzia Minallah was also a part along with storytelling by children’s renowned author Shahbano Bilgrami. Children were also invited to participate in sing-alongs with veteran Pakistani musician, Khaled Anam.

KLF London 2Ameena Saiyid, KLF and Islamabad Literature Festival Founder and Director, Asif Farrukhi, KLF and Islamabad Literature Festival Founder, and Adrian Mellor, Managing Director, Asia Education, OUP, Pakistan’s High Commissioner to UK, Syed Ibn Abbas welcomed the guests and speakers. A renowned novelist and journalist, Mohammed Hanif also addressed the audiences making them feel and live the history, hopes and problems of Pakistan.

Highlights of the KLF LONDON

• ‘Transphobia and Misogyny’, a discussion on legislations around transgenders and women in Pakistan;
• ‘Reluctant Returners: Migrants, Refugees and Memories of the Homeland’ a tale in with fiction characters inspired by exile and displacement; and
KLF London 5• ‘Pakistani Renaissance? The Best in Cinema, Reportage, Theatre and Fashion’ with the television actor Atiqa Odho, filmmaker Faris Kermani, designer Maheen Khan, and journalist Cyril Almeida as speakers.
• Portraying Pakistan’s gender and class divide, ‘Blaming the Elite: Class, Greed, and Gender in Contemporary Pakistan’.
• A stimulating panel discussion titled ‘Madrassas and Montessoris: Are Private Schools Keeping Madrassas at Bay?’ moderated by Nigham Shahid, discussion included educationists, entrepreneurs, and experts – Farid Panjwani, Ahmereen Reza, Mona Kasuri, and Ameena Saiyid.
• ‘Against All Odds: The Price of Prosperity in Pakistan Today’ analyzed geopolitical and internal challenges facing Pakistan.
• ‘Urdu ki Zid Mai: At Loggerheads: Urdu vs English vs Regional Languages’
• ‘Good Muslim, Bad Muslim: Diaspora Pakistanis Caught in Post Brexit Hate-Storm’, challenges faced by Pakistani diaspora in Europe;
• ‘Karachi: City of Lights and Gangs’ about the battle for Karachi and its resilience despite political conflicts;
• ‘Tweeting for Social Change: How Social Media is Influencing the Political Scene’ discussed the impact of social media on Pakistan’s political scene.
• An open mic session for Pakistan’s regional language poets to recite their latest offerings, ‘Satrangi Mushaira’;
KLF London 4

• ‘In Their Own Words: Writers and Poets from Pakistan’, featured poetry and prose readings by writers of Pakistani presented a medley of readings, film clips, recitals, dance and poetry about the Partition of India.

What proved to be the icing on the cake was a closing kathak dance performance by Shayma Saiyid, followed by a music concert by a Peshawar-based music band, Khumariyaan, known for their fusion brand of Pashtun folk music.

The KLF London was sponsored by Bestway, Arts Council England, Third World Quarterly magazine, Salt n Pepper restaurant, High Commission of Pakistan in London, South Asia Institute of the University of Texas at Austin, and The Pakistan Society.

I wish I was physically present at the event to witness and savour my soul with all the knowledge and discussions that were a part of KLF, London. However, I do hope and expect KLF to keep contributing and educating people and putting serenity of literature in their beings through such festivals. I consider myself to be fateful to be able to recognize and be an attendee of KLF every year.

Loads of love and wishes your way KLF!

Xiaomi brings Redmi 4X to Pakistan in partnership with Smartlink Technologies

One of the world’s leading technology company Xiaomi launches Redmi 4X in Pakistan on Saturday through distribution partner SmartLink Technology. The launch event took place in Lahore on Friday and was hosted by none other than the witty Taimur Salahuddin AKA Mooroo.

Audiences were provided double dose of entertainment with the hilarious jokes of Mooroo and scintillating performances by Pakistan’s leading band Noori and Nescafe Basement band with Altamash Sarver who made audiences dance to their favourite tracks. The stunning Mira Sethi also made a special guest appearance who was all praises for the newly launched Smartphone, equipped with the latest technology in an affordable price.

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Smartlink Technologies Marketing Director Ahmed Butt was quoted as saying, “Majority of the Pakistani consumers prefer to purchase smartphones remaining in this price bracket and thus this bracket has always remained a key market for all brands. We have confidence that Redmi 4X will be a hit within its own price bracket, as the smartphone surely outperforms its competition in the market.”

Redmi 4X

Redmi 4X features a full metal body, is the slimmest in design at just 8.65mm of thickness and weighs a mere 150g. Equipped with a 4100mAh battery, Redmi 4X has an impressive standby time of up to 18 days! Bid those dying battery issues adieu! It will be available with a 3GB RAM and 32GB storage, so users can multi-task more efficiently, having more space for their downloaded applications and images. Redmi 4X will be available in the markets from Saturday in black a price of Rs 18,900.

The smartphones will be available offline across the country and online at official mistore.pk and at authorised online sales agents including Daraz.pk and Yayvo.com.

 

Every Redmi 4X will ship with MIUI 8 which builds in several technology breakthroughs such as being able to clone apps and manage multiple accounts on the same phone. This means that users can have two instances of a messaging app on the same phone that correspond to different accounts, removing the inconvenience of having to log in and out on the same app. With MIUI 8, users can also split their smartphones into two accounts. This means that a different password or fingerprint can allow you to access a different home screen entirely, with independent apps and data. According to their needs, users can choose to merge certain data such as the address book and their call log history.

 

Key features of Redmi 4X:

  • Qualcomm Snapdragon 435 with (Octa-core 1.4GHz)
  • 4100mAh battery
  • 13MP camera with PDAF; 5MP front camera
  • 5-inch HD display
  • Dual SIM (3-choose-2 hybrid SIM tray)
  • LTE support
  • 3GB RAM + 32GB Flash
  • Up to 128GB microSD expandable storage
  • Rear fingerprint sensor
  • Available in Black

 

About Xiaomi

Xiaomi was founded in 2010 by serial entrepreneur Lei Jun based on the vision “innovation for everyone”. We believe that high-quality products built with cutting edge technology should be made accessible to everyone. We create remarkable hardware, software, and internet services for and with the help of our Mi fans. We incorporate their feedback into our product range, which currently includes Mi and Redmi smartphones, Mi TVs and set-top boxes, Mi routers, and Mi Ecosystem products including smart home products, wearables and other accessories. With more than 70 million handsets sold in 2015, Xiaomi is expanding its footprint across the world to become a global brand.

 

About Smartlink Technologies

Established in 2016, Smartlink Technologies is a brainchild of a pool of professionals whose strong vision and even stronger conviction paved the way for an exclusive partnership with Xiaomi. We believe in reaching out to both the low-end and the high-end consumers and still give out state-of-the-art and warranted products at the best possible prices. We live in an age where the digital world meanders from smartphones to smart everything – we see it all around us. Smartlink Technologies strives to connect latest technology with modern and innovative sales techniques to change not only how brands are marketed but also how they define themselves.

Highlights from the event:

 

 

 

 

Ek Cup Cheeni

Yeh qissa tou aap ne suna hi hoga. Sirf suna hi nahi, filmon aur draamo may dekha bhi hoga aur zindagi main ek dafa khud experience bhi kiya hoga.

Per asal zindagi ki kahani haqeeqat se kafi mukhtalif hoti hai. Na ghar ke darwazay pe dastak hoti hai aur na bell ki tring tring awaz. Bus zara sa khatkaya, ammi ko awaz lagayi aur ander agaye. Na koi rok tok, na koi hichkichahat, apne ghar jesi hi tou baat hai. Aakhir zaroorat ke waqt apne hi kaam atay hain. Aur jab zaroorat ho ‘Ek cup cheeni’ ki, tou sabse pehle hum apne parosi hi ke ghar jatay hain.

Aise hi guzra tha mera bachpan bhi, aur mujhse pehle mere amma abba ka. Chhupan chhupayi khelte, doli wala jhoola jhoolte, amma ki daant khatay aur poora poora din apne mohallay ki best friends, Beenish aur Sehrish ke ghar guzaarte.

Humain ehsaas bhi nahi hota ke kitna khaas hota hai ye rishta apne parosiyon ke sath, jo hassi khushi ke sath sath humare dukh dard ke bhi sabse awal shareek hote hain. Phir chahay wo Muharram main sharbat baatna ho ya afsos ke maukay per ghar pe naashta aur khaana pohanchana. Parosiyon ke sath share kerna tou humari roots ka ek hissa hai, jo shayad kahin kho gaya hai ab.

Per mazay ki baat dekhein ke kese is ‘Ek cup cheeni’ ke anmol rishte ki yaad humain aj ek Cheeni k zariye hi dilayi gayi. (whattay pun 😛 )

Yes, I’m talking about the latest Shan TVC (https://www.facebook.com/ShanFoods/?ref=br_rs) focusing on bringing back the lost tradition of #KhaanaWithParosi

Baatein shaatein tou sab karte hi hain but kudos to Shan Foods for portraying this message so beautifully! Uspe Meesha Shafi ki awaz aur Lahore ki khoobsurti ne mazeed chaar chand laga diye.

Beher haal Shan ne tou apna kaam kerdia, ab bari humari hai.

Tou kyun na shuruat kerein, ‘Ek cup cheeni’ se? Kia khayal hai?

#KhaanaWithParosi phir ek baar…

Step-by-Step Guide: How to deal with Change?

Change is difficult. It’s unacceptable, yet unavoidable.

Have put down a list of necessary steps to help you deal with it.

STEP 1 – Fight with it. Retaliate it.

Why did it happen to you? 

Take a wooden spoon and stab your self until it starts bleeding. You have done nothing to deserve this.

STEP 2 – Deny it.

No. There’s no way in the world you can let ‘change’ take charge of your life. Something you worked so hard for, not being there anymore – This just can’t be real! Swear. Swear a lot and tell everything to fuck off.

STEP 3 – Complain about it.

Why did it happen to you? What was your fault? You do realize there’s no smoke without fire but who else knows what’s inside your heart better than yourself. You’ve been cheated on. Left alone and helpless in despair. It’s not fair, not fair at all. 

STEP 4 – Question it.

Why you? What was your fault? How long will this battle within yourself continue? Is there no way out?

Think of all the possible questions you could possibly think of until you can’t think anymore.

STEP 5 – Hear it out. Listen to it.

Give change a chance to explain its stance.

While you may be having a really hard time coping up with change, but hear its side of the story. What happened? ‘Was it necessary?’ Heck no! But it has happened already, just like a toothpaste out of the tube  – there’s no going back now. 

STEP 6 – Try to understand it.

It’s difficult, even unfathomable. You’re lying on the floor – pain-stricken, bewildered and helpless in a pool of misery that’s sucking you in like quicksand. This will last! It’s a steep slope but you’ve crossed half of it. Buckle up, wipe your cheeks and save your tears for later. You gotta climb that mountain now.

STEP 7 – Accept it.

Change is like that annoying person we all hate in the start but eventually find ourselves drawing closer to, naturally. You start accepting all their flaws and disorders, developing an unconditional and unexplainable admiration for them. Yeah, you begin to accept it! While some things may or may not be according to our liking, accepting them is the greatest favour we can do to ourselves.

STEP 8 – Embrace it.

Welcome ‘change’ with open arms in the newfound love you have discovered for it. Change will eventually come to show you that it was not that bad afterall. You will gradually find yourself accustomed to it, like it was there all along. It will feel right, might even feel better. Just let the friction settle in. And never say never!

Say what you need to say