I’ve written a few pieces about Pakistan in recent months.
Rising from the ashes: a new era in Pakistani cinema (emerge85)
I wrote this piece about Pakistani cinema’s “new wave” back in January. After a long lull – wracked by underfunding and a severe limitation of physical cinemas – Pakistani directors and writers are producing exciting and distinctive new movies. I also discussed the story on emerge85’s podcast.
Don’t be fooled by elections—the military is still in charge in Pakistan (Prospect)
On a less cheerful note, my column in the June issue of Prospect looks at the increasing limits on Pakistan’s democracy as the July election approaches and censorship of media outlets ramping up.
Under the watchful eye of the army (Index on Censorship)
For this report on the ongoing clampdown on free expression in Pakistan, I spoke with journalists who have been targeted by the establishment after criticising the military. The piece – in the Summer 2018 issue – is currently behind a paywall.
Two women from Waziristan, the militancy plagued northern region of Pakistan, are standing in elections for the first time ever. I’ve reported on the story for the New Statesman.
Pakistan’s tribal areas are not known for female empowerment. The Federally Administered Tribal Area (Fata) which borders Afghanistan is an ultra-conservative region where women are mostly uneducated, and rarely leave the house without their husbands, if at all.
However, a female resident from Bajaur district made history yesterday, by becoming Pakistan’s first ever tribal woman to stand in elections. Badam Zari is a 40 year old housewife, with no children. “I want to reach the assembly to become a voice for women, especially those living in the tribal areas,” she told the Associated Press on Monday. “This was a difficult decision, but now I am determined and hopeful society will support me.” Her husband, Sultan Khan, accompanied her when she went to file her nomination papers. He says she has his full backing.