Past, present, and future

When I was little, I read history books, even textbooks, with a great deal of reverence. The record of the past, I thought, must be revered for it represented a sort of truth of the ages, the story that connected to the present. I had no idea that history, like so much else, can be created and laid in service for the accomplishment of this or that political or religious goal.

RAFIA ZAKARIA, Aug 16 2018

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Knowing Bangabandhu

As the nation prepares to solemnly remember the gory happenings of August 15, 1975 when the emancipator of Bangalis was brutally assassinated along with most of his family members, it is only proper that the post-liberation generations, particularly the younger segment amongst them, get to know the real dimension of the towering Bangabandhu. Events need to be put in the correct historical perspective to enable proper understanding of the lifelong struggle of this iconic leader.

Muhammad Nurul Huda, Aug 16 2018

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Flawed bill

We, the stakeholders of higher education in India, have grown up with the UGC Act, 1956 in so far as our academic and administrative matters are concerned.


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Animal legislation

Last month, social media highlighted the barbaric torture of a donkey in Karachi and his subsequent death; Dawn also carried a distressing article on the incident which stated: “It is a sad reflection on the soul of a society when its greatest targets for causing pain and misery are those who cannot fight back, who have no voice.” A sadistic mob inflicted unprecedented brutality on a mute, innocent animal but no one was punished because of poor law enforcement.

Rukhsana Shah, Aug 09 2018

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When children see what we don’t

No matter who you ask, the student movement for safe roads we witnessed across our country recently is something completely unprecedented. Talking to a British journalist yesterday, I realised just how uncommon it was for such a large-scale movement to be initiated and led by high school and school-aged children, at any point in history, anywhere in the world—which is primarily what has captured the imagination of some sections of the international media that has been covering it.


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Soldiers in insurgency-hit areas

The Supreme Court is presently hearing a PIL on alleged extra-judicial killings during the peak of insurgency in Manipur. It has been pressurising the CBI, presently investigating some of the cases, to speed up its processes. At the last hearing on 30 July the court summoned the head of CBI and left him with the option of arresting those security personnel against whom investigations were complete and charge sheets filed.

Harsha Kakkar, Aug 09 2018

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Recycled plastic for roads

The idea of using discarded plastic to build roads was brought to fruition by a company called VolkerWessels in 2015. But the country where roads are now being built with this new technology is India. Indeed, the man who made it possible was Dr Rajagopalan Vasudevan, a professor of chemistry at the Thiagarajar College of Engineering in Madurai, who was honoured with one of India’s highest civilian awards, the Padma Shri, in January 2018 for his ground-breaking research on re-using plastic waste in road construction.


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Enemies next door

THE most famous case in recent memory was that of the little girl in her pink jacket. Seven-year-old Zainab Ansari, the little girl whose face became familiar to Pakistanis for all the wrong reasons, was abducted, then raped and killed, by a 23-year-old neighbour. In the days after the crime, after he had thrown Zainab’s body in a trash heap in the neighbourhood, Imran Ali watched her parents suffer and search. He never said a word. Until he was arrested, Zainab’s parents had no idea that their worst enemy, the killer of their daughter, lived so close to them.

RAFIA ZAKARIA, Aug 02 2018

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Topsy-turvy state

Translated into English, the caption sounds somewhat respectable—the Northern Province, i.e. Uttar Pradesh. It has the distinction of being the centre of what has been termed as the cow belt of India, returning the largest number of MPs to Parliament. The single province has contributed the largest number of Prime Ministers since Independence.

ASHOK KAPUR, Aug 02 2018

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Environmental aspects of Rohingya camps

It has been nearly a year since the latest influx of the Rohingya people after they were forcibly driven out of Myanmar and into Bangladesh. Since last August, over 700,000 refugees, mostly women and children, have been housed, fed, clothed and provided with medical attention by a combination of Bangladesh’s military and civilian authorities and NGOs as well as the UN and other international agencies, of whom there are over a hundred working day and night in the Rohingya camps.

Saleemul Huq, Jul 26 2018

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This is a translation of the Henshu Techo column from The Yomiuri Shimbun’s July 12 issue.

Jul 26 2018

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Polls and social media

THE ‘drawing room’ discussions on politics have shifted to the palm of our hands through smartphones that connect us to social media, and political activity has taken a fresh turn onto the digital realm in Pakistan, as elsewhere?

USAMA KHILJI, Jul 26 2018

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Farmers up in arms

In June 2017, farmers in Maharashtra organised an amazing movement. They decided to stop sending their produce to cities. As a result, an overwhelming majority of Agriculture Produce Marketing Cooperatives did not receive any produce.


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