Posted on June 15, 2013 by beenasarwar
‘Bowl out polio’: Pakistani cricketers Younis Khan and Imran Farhat give polio drops to a child at a UNICEF event in New Delhi, Jan 2013. Photo: PTI
Here’s something I wrote for Aman ki Asha recently, published in the June 5, 2013 edition:
India and Pakistan are working together against a common enemy. Pakistan’s new government must take up the baton
Over the past year, Pakistan has been studying how India dramatically eradicated polio, with the World Health Organisation striking it off its list of polio endemic countries in February 2012; the last case was recorded in January 2011. Read more »
Filed under: Health, Pakistan-India | Tagged: CDC, Dr Hamid Jafari, India, Pakistan, polio, Rotary, Shahid Afridi, Ulema | Leave a Comment »
Posted on June 11, 2013 by beenasarwar
I am proud of my old friend Ahsan Jamil for the work he is doing in Karachi, and delighted to have introduced him to another old friend Babette Niemel, who was inspired to write the following article about Aman Foundation, published in The News on Sunday, on March 10, 2013.
A Dutch journalist records her impressions of how Aman Foundation is changing the lives of Karachi’s underserved people
I have met Ahsan Jamil several times during my frequent visits to Karachi over the years. A modest, lively, kind man and a close childhood friend of my friend Beena Sarwar; when I met him once again a little over a year ago, he was positively beaming.
Engaged and committed: Aman Foundation CEO Ahsan Jamil and Manager Command and Control Center in discussion.
It was a cool summer evening in Karachi and we were out on the porch at Beena’s house. Ahsan was inviting her to come and checkout the new work he was doing. He could give us a tour of the facility, he said, extending the invitation to me as well. Read more »
Filed under: Education, Health, Pakistan | Tagged: Ahsan Jamil, Aman Foundation, Education, emergency care, health, Pakistan, philanthropy | Leave a Comment »
Posted on May 28, 2013 by beenasarwar
Tracing a peace sign together via a giant web-cam
Here’s something I wrote about how a soft drink giant creatively connected Indians and Pakistanis with ‘the other side’, with a three-minute video that was easily the most shared link on the Aman ki Asha facebook group last week (not that it’s going to get me to start drinking Coke, or any other soda); published in the Aman ki Asha page in The News, May 22, 2013
Quenching the thirst for peace
An innovative idea connects Indians and Pakistanis with ‘the other side’
“It saddens me that we have neighbours that we can’t even go visit.”
“The perception is that they’re the bad guy. But when you actually meet them you realise they’re just like me.” Read more »
Filed under: Pakistan-India | Tagged: coca cola, csr, India, Pakistan, Peace | Leave a Comment »
Posted on May 17, 2013 by beenasarwar
Here’s the piece I wrote for the Economic and Political Weekly, India, published on the web today, copied below with minor changes, photos and added links.
Lahore, Dec 9, 2007: (L-R): Nawaz Sharif. Qazi Hussain Ahmad and Imran Khan meet to discuss whether to boycott January 8, 2008 polls. “Boycott, and then what?” asked Benazir Bhutto who convinced Sharif to participate in the polls. The rest is history. Photo: Arif Ali/AFP/Getty Images
The recent elections in Pakistan show that the country is finally on the right track notwithstanding the rigging, the violence and the brutal prevention of women from voting in some areas by representatives of all the political parties. The huge turnout of women and first time young voters risking their lives to exercise their right to choose is something to celebrate and strengthen Read more »
Filed under: Politics | Tagged: ANP, elections 2013, imran khan, nawaz sharif, Pakistan, PPP, TTP, women vote | 1 Comment »
Posted on May 9, 2013 by beenasarwar
Screenshot of Sanaullah from a TV report last year, on Indian and Pakistani prisoners participating in a kite-flying festival together. “It’s really nice, I feel like a child myself,” Sanaullah told the reporter.
Tragically, Sanaullah, the Pakistani prisoner whom a fellow inmate had attacked in prison in Jammu in Indian administered Kashmir on May 3, finally succumbed to his injuries on May 9. The attack took place on the day of the funeral of Sarabjit Singh, the high profile Indian prisoner who died on May 3, after being in a coma following an attack by fellow inmates in Kot Lakhpat Jail, Lahore on April 26 – ironically, the day that Indian members of the India Pakistan Joint Judicial Committee on Prisoners landed in Pakistan to inspect jails and meet Indian prisoners. The Committee’s recommendations have been made public, and if implemented, will go a long way towards alleviating the plight of cross-border prisoners.
Here’s a link to the note I wrote, published in the weekly Aman ki Asha page in The News last week – Condemnable attack on unarmed prisoner. A followup note regarding Sanaullah was published in the AKA page of May 8. I sincerely hope this is the end of the series. (If you’re on facebook, feel free to ‘like’ the AKA page and join the AKA group - both managed on a voluntary basis) Read more »
Filed under: Pakistan-India | Tagged: India Pakistan, judicial committee on prisoners, prisoners, Sanaullah, Sarabjit | 2 Comments »
Posted on May 9, 2013 by beenasarwar
Khalid Lottfi: “We will not let them hijack our religion”
“You know, I think the Chinese student who was killed, I took her there,” said the cab driver. It was a few days after the Boston Marathon bombings of April 15, and after the police had chased the perpetrators, killing one and capturing the other. Everyone was still talking about the unfortunate events that claimed three lives and injured over 260 more.
It turned out that the brothers Tsarnaev lived on our street, on the next block. Here’s a link to the piece I wrote about it for weekly The News on Sunday in Pakistan – and a shorter comment for Global Post – Boston bombings: A Pakistani perspective. Read more »
Filed under: Peace | Tagged: Boston marathon bombings, cambridge ma, Islam, Norfolk Street, Pakistan, violence | Leave a Comment »
Posted on April 9, 2013 by beenasarwar
Parveen Rehman: A ‘selfie’ in Stockholm, 2008. Photo: courtesy Arif Pervaiz.
The cold-blooded murder of Parveen Rehman on March 13 this year came as no great surprise – in the lawless concrete jungle that is Karachi, one always expects the worst. That doesn’t mitigate the shock and immense grief at the gunning down of the gentlest of human beings, someone who had devoted her life to helping the poor, empowering the under-privileged. Below, my article on Parveen in Economic and Political Weekly, India, written on March 19, 2013. Also see the these beatuiful tributes by K. B. Abro (with audio), Zameen Kha Gayi Asmaan Kaise Kaise; Zubeida Mustafa, Rest in peace little sister; and Masuma Hasan, Parween Rahman: the legend lives on Read more »
Filed under: Human rights | Tagged: Abro, Desmukh, karachi, land mafia, Masuma Hasan, MQM, Parveen Rehman, Steve Inskeep, Taliban, Zubeida Mustafa | 2 Comments »