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Tuesday, April 01, 2008

Mediawatch Desi Mar 31: Cabinet Sworn, Dr. Eqbal Ahmad, Patras Bokhari, PEMRA, Ghani Khan and Moeen Faruqui

Among anticolonial intellectuals, Pakistani scholar and activist Eqbal Ahmad (1933–99), who toward the end of his life spent fifteen years teaching at Hampshire College in Massachusetts, holds a special place. He never published a classic text on the order of Frantz Fanon’s Wretched of the Earth or Edward Said’s Orientalism, nor did he achieve anything like fame. (The closest he came was a passing notoriety during the Nixon era, when he was indicted on charges of conspiring to kidnap Henry Kissinger.) Yet everyone who was someone in the vast but—in the West—obscure world of Third World radicalism knew Ahmad, and even his adversaries had a grudging respect for him. As much as Said, he was a mentor to a generation of thinkers, mostly South Asian, who have been active in protest struggles in the West as well as in the subcontinent. Amitava Kumar on Dr. Eqbal Ahmad

This website has been produced and developed exclusively by Syed Ayaz Bokhari, grandson of Late Professor Ahmed Shah Bokhari (Patras Bokhari) in collaboration with Pakistan Data Management Services, Karachi. This website was officially launched at Patras Bokhari’s Alma Mater, GC University, Lahore (formerly known as Government College, Lahore) on 24th December 2005. The launch ceremony was held at the Bokhari Auditorium (named after Patras Bokhari) of GC University. Speakers on the occasion were Syed Ayaz Bokhari, Syed Haroon Bokhari (son of Patras Bokhari), Khaled Ahmed, journalist, Bano Qudsia, writer, Justice (Retd) Javed Iqbal and Prof. Dr. Khalid Aftab, Vice Chancellor, GC University. We hope that this website will provide the opportunity to its visitors to enjoy the writings of Patras Bokhari, and discover the many facets of this great personality through his works, and the articles and features on him which are included in this website. Introducing Website: Patras Bokhari

ISLAMABAD: The first batch of the 24-member cabinet of Prime Minister Syed Yousuf Raza Gilani was sworn in by President Pervez Musharraf today (Monday).

On this occasion, the members sported black bands round their arms. This is the first time in the national history that cabinet members were sworn in with black bands showing protests against the man who is administering oath to them.

With the formation of the government after the oath, the countdown for the implementation of the Murree Declaration would begin. The declaration promises reinstatement of the deposed judges within 30 days after the formation of the government. 24-strong cabinet takes oath

Former Editor, journalist and PPP functionary and now the Information Minister designate Sherry Rahman will be the new czar of PEMRA. Or maybe not! Hamid Mir spoke with her and she forwarded his query to Zardari who assured Mir that Pemra has been disbanded and the announcement was culled from the PM's speech. In half an hour the new PM made the announcement killing it, according to Mir in his column in daily Jang.

The break-in at Justice Ramday's Islamabad house, ordered by Justice Dogar will take interesting ramifications for Gillani Administration.

An obvious strain of fatigue has started to set in across purveyors of and apologists for jihadists and the reminiscing nostalgic glorifiers of the American and Pakistani involvement in the anti-Soviet Afghan war. As the fallout of that war rips across cities louder and deadlier than ever, films such as Charlie Wilson’s War start seeming obnoxiously simplistic. Eat this, Charlie Wilson - Nadeem Paracha

Tariq Ali's concluding paragraph in Where has all the rage gone? Some, who once dreamed of a better future, have simply given up. Others espouse a bitter maxim: unless you relearn you won't earn. The French intelligentsia, which had from the Enlightenment onwards made Paris the political workshop of the world, today leads the way with retreats on every front. Renegades occupy posts in every west European government defending exploitation, wars, state terror and neocolonial occupations; others now retired from the academy specialise in producing reactionary dross on the blogosphere, displaying the same zeal with which they once excoriated factional rivals on the far left. This, too, is nothing new. More here.

Ghani Khan (1915-1996) eldest son of the legendry Pakhtoon leader, Baacha Khan was a widely acclaimed poet, painter, sculptor and a fine prose writer. Author of several books in Pashto, Urdu and English, he is known more for his writings than his art. Khan was quite familiar with, and sensitive to, the cultural heritage and social values of his people, the Pakhtoons, and this is apparent in all his works. But it was his fine lines and masterly control over his brush that lends common everyday happenings a genuine feel. A Master of lines by Sher Alam Shinwari [thanks BS]

The paintings and drawings of Moeen Faruqi, comprising acrylics on paper and canvas, and a sculpture installation on show at Rohtas 2 in Lahore, belong to this genre, which defies the scope of interpretation. On the face of things, his work seems remarkably na�ve and picturesque, �memories of something once known and since forgotten, like childhood or paradise�. It lacks any sense of dogma; yet it is a statement of fact. Faruqi�s is a strange, pictographic language. Strange because his images are so familiar, so bold, so insistent in their rhythmic patterns. What is one to make of a fish that remains essentially a fish, or for that matter of bottles and rugs, and cats and ducks? There is no heroic endeavour, no epic grandeur about these images, no satirical punch line; but there is poetry, and there is magic. Moeen Faruqui by Aasim Akhtar [thanks BS]


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