Khoon ke Aansoo

Phir na nikalna iss tareh ay guruub e aftab
Ke mera dil aaj khoon ke aansoo ro raha hay

Ye mera dil, meri dharkan, meri saans
Aaj saneha-e-buzdili ki daastaan pe ro raha hay

Voh maa, behan, voh bhai aaj kyun apnon se bechar gaye
Farishta-e-sifat bachon se kyun koi badla le raha hay

Qaatil tum naheen, hum naheen, koi bhi naheen
Voh phir masoom lashon ke unbaar kyun laga raha hay

Dekho aaj ilm ke paristaar wahan chal basay
In taarik rahon main kyun koi dia bhuja raha hay

Raasta hay kathan, manzil bohat door apni
In halaat main kyun koi kaante bicha raha hay

Phir na dilana yaad mujh ko ye din saaqi
Ke mera dil aaj khoon ke aansoo ro raha hay

Ke mera dil aaj khoon ke aansoo ro raha hay . . . .

(C) Atif Mumtaz December 16, 2014

Dedicated to the victims of Peshawar Attack.


Afridi does an Afridi!

Shahid Afridi - Asia CupI mean wow! Shahid Afridi’s two sixes in two balls sealed the fate of the Pakistan vs India’s game in favor of the defending champions, Pakistan at the Asia Cup group match. While billions of hearts sank in India, another 200 million supporting Pakistan worldwide felt a new life run through their veins.

Never have I seen Twitter, Facebook, News media and SMS flutter with so many congratulatory messages before. #Lala is a trending topic, and so is #Boomboom on Twitter. Open your Facebook timeline in Pakistan, and chances are Lala’s heroics are the only thing on it.
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Ruet-e-Hilal Committee Needs a bit of Science Jolt

Coin of Abbasid CaliphateHave you ever wondered how are the ancient mosques (over 500 years old and more) pointing in the right direction? That is, towards Makkah. I mean, how did the ancient Islamic scholars figure out the direction of the Kaaba without having access to any modern instruments like GPS, or even advance mathematics like Calculus?

Have you ever wondered, how did a Muzzin called the faithful to prayer five times a day without the use of a clock? Some would argue the stars helped him, but then how was he so precise for Salat time on a cloudy night (or day for that matter)? How were they able to account for changing of the day and night and the length of daylight?

Did you know that the first Scientist to figure out Earth’s circumference to within 1% of accuracy (of what we know today) was no other than Al-Beruni, the muslim mathematician in Baghdad. And he did it in 900AD!
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Why do we gain weight during Ramadan?

ramadan-iftarEver wonder why do we gain weight during the holy month of Ramadan? We fast. From Fajr till Maghrib. Thats a whopping 15 hours (your local time may vary) of no food or drink under the blazing July Sun. But instead of making us thinner and fitter, we end up with an even wider waistline than before. Makes no sense!

Or does it.

The real problem is not what we eat. But how much we eat. And by God, we eat a lot after dutifully abstaining during the hot summer day. Just visit your nearest Iftar party in a typical Lahori restaurant; we literally invade the buffet trays as if we are famished for days.

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Cricket Champions Trophy – Pakistan the favorites?

ICC Champions TrophyAnother major ICC tournament is up for grabs and yet again, Pakistan is ranked among the favorites to lift it.

Since crashing out of the World Cup 2007 in the first round, Pakistan has shown remarkable consistency by reaching at least the semi-final stages of all the six major ICC tournaments to date. On their way, they were able to make it to the final of two (winning one of them, World T20 2009 in England) and semi-finalist in the other four. This is remarkable, considering they are the only team to have played so many semi-finals or finals so far. The other team that comes close is Sri Lanka with 5 such appearances since 2007 World Cup Final. However, Sri Lanka, on the other hand, has not won anything yet, even though they were in the finals four times.

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Load-Shedding & Electricity Production Figures are Fudged


Government of Pakistan claims that the demand for electricity in the country is 24,000MW and the shortfall is 5,000MW. Fair enough.

But then, we see 20 hours of load-shedding in rural areas and 12-14 hours in urban centers in a day. The amount of load-shedding and the amount of shortfall do not add up. So let’s do some simple math to figure out what is going on.

Let’s assume that 30% of the total population of the country lives in urban centers like Lahore, Faisalabad, Karachi, Rawalpindi, Peshawar, etc. While 70% of the population lives in rural towns and villages (Toba Tek Singh, Mardan etc).

Now if Urban centers on average receive 10 hours of electricity in a day. That’s about 42% of the time with electricity and 58% without electricity in a 24 hour period.

Using the same logic, the rural centers receive no more than 4 hours of electricity in a day. So that’s about 17% of the 24 hours that they have electricity while a whopping 83% of the time there is none.

Now let’s add the two sums up. The 30% of Urban as a percentage of total (urban + rural) will add up to only 12% of the time that the urban centers get electricity. While the 70% of the rural as a percentage of the total country will be no more than 13% of the electricity.

So by adding 12%+13% we get 25% of the total time the nation has electricity at any given time.

So if the total requirement is 24,000 MW, then 25% of that would be no more than 6,000MW. Hence, the total production in the country is 6,000MW while the shortfall is 18,000MW.

It is now evident that the government’s estimates of shortfall and production are wrong. Either the people who are calculating these numbers are incompetent or the numbers are being deliberately fudged.

IPL is nothing but a circus


Photo courtesy of BBC. Ban IPL

If you (BCCI) can build a business (IPL) on greed and not Cricket, then do not cry foul if cricketers and bookies also have the same mission.

I had always contended IPL is nothing more than a circus. The recent investigations by Indian Police that spot-fixing is ripe in Indian Premier League (IPL) have made it abundantly clear that none of the matches are a reliable and taint-free day in the field.

It is not just the fringe players out to make some quick bucks, but some of the leading Indian cricketers are found guilty of the offense. To make matters worse, now even the IPL owners are under Police investigation leading one to speculate, is everything reallyCricket?

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We all need a bit of Religion – Even in Chain World Game

ChainWorldReligion has a message. It needs to be heard, shared and passed on. It likes to be practiced and followed in large numbers. There are dire consequences for not accepting its edicts and making them mantra for ones life. Otherwise, calamities may befall the sinner.

There is always reward at the end of the journey for the faithful and harsh punishments for those who go astray. There is charity to be distributed among the less fortunate and Holy Kings to conquer new continents in hope of spreading the message and converting even more converts to the new religion.

The game’s edicts sadly do none of these.
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The Best Park in Pakistan – Fatima Jinnah Park in F-9

Fatima Jinnah F-9 Park

Monument at Fatima Jinnah Park in F-9

Islamabad has a lot to offer for those who love nature and the outdoors. And folks living here can’t wait to find a reason to spend time outdoors. Even in the middle of a hot monsoon summer or freezing winter.

There are these famous hiking trails all across Magalla hills with a new one added just a few weeks ago. Islamabadis take time out on weekends to enjoy the serene and beautiful nature resorts like Pir Sohawa, Shakarparian, Murree Hills, Khanpur and Rawal dams. Some of these places get so crowded during holidays that it seems everyone has abandoned their homes for the outdoors. The has one more outdoor activity to offer. The well manicured parks and gardens. And one such beautiful park is Fatima Jinnah Park in F-9 Sector.

This 700 acre park was part of the original master plan of the city dating back to early 1960s but was not opened up to the public till early 1990s. In the past twenty odd years, it has gone from being a rugged green expanse to a well maintained and managed park in the city. Probably the best kept in the country.

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The Ancient Civilization’s Contribution to Modern World

AstroglobeI get miffed when a Western historian credits Europe for bringing the world out of dark ages with their Renaissance. I get miffed not because Europe is the savior, but because, there were no dark ages for most of the known world. Middle East, India, Persia and China were enjoying a period of great discovery, inventions, free thinking and open communications among distant lands.

Whenever you read classical Western history, it is usually summed up with “civilized” culture and literacy taking roots with Greeks, polished during Roman times and then after a long and bleak dark ages resurrected by the Europeans during Renaissance. Well, that could be the historical roots of Europe but certainly a wrong representation of the world.

The fact is that Science, literature, language, learning and culture is far older than any Romans or Greeks civilizations. And there were no dark ages sans Europe. The rest of the world led by the Arabs, Chinese and Indians were developing new engineering methods, laying the roots for mathematics, developing financial models of business including the first banks and cheques and building huge trade routes (Silk road) that span the whole of the then known world.

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