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By Anjum Altaf It is difficult to support any political party in Pakistan for an obvious reason. They are so full of corrupt, uncaring and incompetent leaders that associating with them comes across either as opportunism or stupidity. Those who manipulate political leaders are even less...

By Anjum Altaf The overwhelming triumph of the BJP in the recent elections is being interpreted by many as the death of a liberal, plural, and secular India. This is a misreading of history. Two distinctions are relevant. First, while post-1947 India was indeed characterised by the...

By Faizaan Qayyum They claimed to have invaded the sovereign territory of an enemy country. They had dropped bombs, they said, and hit a terrorist camp that involved no military or civilian targets. In the days that followed, we retaliated: we intruded enemy-controlled territory, chose to...

By Anjum Altaf Pakistan should be a welfare state. With millions of people straddling the poverty line, there is no other way forward. Those who believe the market will offer a solution are driven by ideology, blind fundamentalists in the same category as religious fundamentalists. Only...

By Anjum Altaf Daniel Kahneman (2002 Nobel Memorial Prize in Economics) has a lovely book called Thinking, Fast and Slow (2011) in which he distinguishes between the two modes of thought. Fast thinking is instinctive and emotional and subject to many cognitive biases; slow thinking is...

By Anjum Altaf It is a fact that no one outside Pakistan considers the most recent electoral exercise to have been even-handed -- some analysts have gone so far as calling it a ‘soft coup.’ This is no surprise. Most outsiders also insist that Pakistan sponsors...

By Anjum Altaf Pakistan wants to resume bilateral cricketing ties with India while India refuses to play ball. How would an alien from Mars, unaffected by nationalist biases, assess the situation? It would be hard to dismiss the Indian position outright. Think of it this way: If...

By Anjum Altaf Look at the map of Pakistan. The overwhelming length of its land border (92% of a total of 6,774 kilometers) is shared with three countries - India (43%), Afghanistan (36%), and Iran (13%). Pakistan has poor relations with each of these three neighbours. Has...

By Anjum Altaf Speak (After Faiz Ahmed Faiz’s Bol) Now is the time to speak Lips not sealed Body unbroken Blood coursing still Through your veins Now is the time to speak Look The iron glows red Like your blood The chain lies open Like your lips Now is the time to speak Speak For the tide of life runs out Speak For...

By Anjum Altaf For the Students and Faculty of JNU (After Faiz Ahmed Faiz’s dar-e umiid ke daryuuza-gar) Cursing, hurling vile abuse They came to tarnish, ravish, debase Parade the tatters of our soul As emblems of their rule Hordes swarm the streets Goose-stepping, flaunting steel Threatening, intimidating those Who dare refuse to keel We collect...