International Men’s Day slips by quietly in Pakistan

  • How International Men’s Day fared in Pakistan
  • A women’s right activist on International Men’s Day
  • How International men’s day 2016 coincided with interesting developments
  • What is it really about?



Trending on twitter for a few hours on twitter was the only thing International Men’s Day could manage in Pakistan. It was not mentioned in the media, save for a blog and a single TV report.

The trend of being ignored is somewhat global, with people often complaining that the International Men’s day gets less attention than women’s day.


But people in Pakistan expresses their views against the day very strongly, maybe because Pakistan is ranked 147th out of 188 in the global gender inequality index.


A Pakistani feminist on men’s day

Dr. Farzana Bari heads the Centre for Excellence in Gender Studies at Quaid-e-Azam University in Islamabad. A keen and vocal supporter of women’s rights, Dr. Bari has a very clear view on the whole International Men’s Day affair.

      “This is simply retaliation, no men are being discriminated against in Pakistan”

She added that the lack of any active body pursuing men’s rights is the reason International Men’s Day is celebrated in Pakistan, dismissing the whole thing in the end as a “Non-Issue”.

Development: Men’s Rights on the horizon in Pakistan

Just a few days before International Men’s Day 2016, Sahibzada Zahid Mehmood Qasmi a member of the Council of Islamic Ideology came up with something new. In a letter to the chairman of the council, Qasmi asked for a men’s rights bill to be passed. He said:

“There are crimes against men too, mostly by their wives”

Although his letter was not inspired by International Mens Day, he does not see anything wrong with it.

“If women have a day of their own, why not men too”

So, what is it all about?

The complaints about men’s day are understandable, probably because male domination is so obvious all over the world.


But it is actually about how masculinity might actually be hurting the males all over the world. The theme for this year’s International Mens Day was suicide, as more men kill themselves all over the world.

However, while the debate on whether International Mens day needs to be celebrated or not continues. Humor might be the way forward.




8 brands that should have official outlets in Pakistan


Official outlets mean absolutely no doubts in the authenticity of the product. Pakistan needs more than used imports or cheap remakes of products that the world lives by. Here are 8 outlets that we need official outlets of.

8. Gibson Guitar Corporation

Used by greats such as Jimmy Page and Slash, Gibson guitars are known for their iconic rock sound around the globe. Music played on Gibson guitars has been reaching pakistan for a long time, it’s high time the guitars came to.



7. Harley Davidson motor company

The American Motorcycle company has been identified with lone rangers through the years. Motorcyclists in Pakistan need to have access to better machines to cruise through the country.



6. Lexus

Lexus makes cars that are at once, reliable, high performing and stylish. Pakistan has only limited access to parent company Toyota. While Lexus does not make cars for every segment, there are still a lot of people who would buy them in Pakistan.





5. H&M

The company’s logo is ‘fashion and quality at the best price’. Well we want fashion and quality too, not to mention better prices.



4. Mont Blanc writing instruments

The German maker of pens and inks is just whats missing from our professional lives. With no official outlet, we’re stuck with cheap local makes that are just not upto the task.




3. One Plus Mobile Phones

One Plus is known as a reliable manufacturer of budget phones. Opening an official outlet would give options against low quality Chinese phones that are readily available in the market.

oneplus x.jpg

2. Starbucks

Being one of the largest coffee companies in the world, Starbucks is a major name missing in Pakistan. Having better coffee might make our workdays easier!


1.  Apple

This may come as a surprise since we already see so many Apple products lying around, the American tech giant still has no official outlet in Pakistan. If we get one, rates might become lower and services might become improved.



NR&W 10: Follow up story

I chose a story about quality problems with the road building operations in Islamabad, which was published in Dawn in January.

It went well at the beginning, CDAs member engineering and Islamabad MNA Asad Umar responded quickly and informatively. However, I got stuck on the part where I needed some information from CADD who is a concerned party.

Determined to get the state minister, I dialled his number at regular intervals for three hours. I later told his assistant that if I didnt get a comment I would have to write that ‘the minister refused to comment despite repeated requests’. That did the trick.

The minister gave his comment, which really took the story to the whole new level, at 5pm. This meant that with final touches, I filed my story 1 hour after the deadline. Still, a good story beats good marks.

NR&W9: Audio Visual Slideshow

I chose Itwar Bazaar for my slideshow.

The data collection part was great. Had some decent photographs and good sounds as well. Enough material for a good news story.

The exciting part was a montage I had planned that would span to about 10 or 15 seconds, in which the merchandise sold in Itwar Bazaar would be shown, with voices of shop keepers naming their respective items. However, it was a major setback when I found myself dissatisfied with the quality of the montage during the editing process. I eventually left it out.

Otherwise it was decent, the transition from natural sound to the first speaker (Qaiser the coolie) was particularly good. The watermelon vendor made everyone smile. However, during the class screening that a picture of the Metro Bus terminal was misplaced. But sir understood that.

PoA 9: Posters for Pantene

In the Pantene ad it is noticeable that all girls with labels attached to them had tied-up hair. As the last woman let her hair down, the slogan ‘Don’t let labels hold you back appeared’. The slogan and hashtag will be written on each poster.

Using the same idea, photos of women with tied up hair will be used in the 3 poster campaign. The words bossy, pushy, vain will be written on the bands that hold the girls hair. It is an attempt to show that the labels hold back women (by holding their hair).

A sample poster is given below

Bossy 2.png

PoA 8: Tourism Australia

Big idea in one sentence: A tour of Australia is better than one’s expectations, the unforgettable experience will turn feelings upside down.

1.Arrived to add a new dimension to my life
Departed feeling I had never really lived before


2 Arrived to lose my worries
Departed having found myselflooking out to sea.jpg

3. Arrived to see a single country
Departed having a whole new world.australia-mountain-scenery-wallpaper-1

PoA 7: The Hitchhikers guide to Pakistan

Our social media campaign will be titled ‘The Blend into Pakistan Challenge’. A hashtag of the same name will be used. Participants will need to post photos on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram from their tours to Pakistan. Multiple entries will be encouraged. In the end 15 of the best photos will be selected and their owners will be awarded a month long paid trip to different areas of Pakistan.

The objective is to encourage foreign tourists to try out Pakistan’s dresses and custom, and they will have to provide testimony that they have been doing that on their trip.  The photos will become a guide for later tourists, who will not only see the soft side of Pakistan but also the ways of navigating through the country while on tour.

PoA 6

Problem/opportunity: The university is seen primarily as an institution for theoretical learning with very little emphasis on theoretical work. Because of this many aspiring students do not join the university.

Tribe: Youth aged between 15-18 years, as they will be possible entrants to the university in the coming few years. People interested in filmmaking and news reporting will be primarily targeted. These people might be spread across different socio-economic backgrounds but will have a few attributes in common. They all need to be curious kids who think they possess the creative spark that makes them fit for this field. Photographers, bloggers, writers etc can be potential targets. Their lifestyle should be built around their work.

Key response: Increased applicants to the department of Mass Communication.

Information/attributes: Testimonials of graduates and current students who already have or are going to join the field soon. Information on faculty and facilities as well as any landmark projects made by students during their time in the university can help.

Aspect of brand personality: The university needs to be shown as a place that encourages practical work and creative experimentation, and provides the right environment for the students to do so.

Budget: No constraints. An ad which is heavily spent on would show that the university has enough funds for the advertised facilities as well.


Finally went ahead with the Kohsar market story. The most challenging looking story yet, because I would have to disturb people to get their comments. Most people responded well, except the foreigners which was a major let down. One simply told me, “I think you have the wrong guy”, 2 Chinamen did not respond at all after stopping to looking at me when I called out to them. Tried to get some information from the shop said to be the oldest. They were not ready to talk either. In the end the fruit vendor gave me some excellent nuggets of information. The most memorable part however was when, the rangers called me to explain why I was walking around the market with a camera since the last hour. Good thing I had my card on me, and my wits too so I explained everything. to the frowning ranger quickly and clearly. As always, enough material for a decent story in the end.