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Know Your Neighbor | Pakistan

“BREAKING- Pakistan violates ceasefire in J&K!!” (A Facebook post by some random Indian news channel)

And then starts a saga of obscene comments on either sides of the border..

What does Pakistan mean to you? What is Pakistan for you? What is the first word that comes to your mind when you hear the word ‘Pakistan’?

Okay. I’ll go first. Don’t judge me. The first word that comes to my mind when I hear the word ‘Pakistan’ is LOVE. There’s this happy feeling and it’s like my heart is tingling. Pakistan, for me, is like a forbidden fruit. It’s like a fantasy land.

Since childhood, Pakistan has fascinated me like no other country. I’ve always wanted to know more about this country. I’ve always wanted to get acquainted with my neighboring country. Even if an Indian child has no idea about any country in this world, he/she will have very strong views about Pakistan. Pakistan, irrespective of the lifestyle, background, religion etc. of the Indians, holds a very special place in our hearts; negative or positive, depends.

Indians have grown up with the knowledge of Pakistan through the media, because obviously the travel is restricted. And, unfortunately, all we hear about is different terrorist groups operating on the Pakistani soil, bomb blasts, Pakistani politicians demeaning India, etc.

I’ve always thought of Pakistan as a country where nobody is safe. Often I hear about advocates, diplomats, human rights activists and politicians being brutally murdered. I remember when Benazir Bhutto returned to Pakistan, I thought of her as an idiot to come back to a very unsafe country. One of our neighbors came running to our home and broke the news of her death in an election rally. This is how massive Pakistan is for the Indians.

Agree with me or not, but Internet is a very powerful tool. So I took to YouTube in the hope of changing my perspective about this country. And I wasn’t disappointed. I watched vlogs, hundreds of them. The one vlogger, Lord Aleem, who resides in the United Kingdom started the ‘My Motherland’ series with a mission to show the world that Pakistan isn’t what media portrays it. And he has succeeded. Through his vlogs I found Pakistan to be just as normal as India. I saw cities like Gujranwala, Lahore, Islamabad and also places like Mirpur, Kaghan valley, etc. Pakistan is gorgeous!

So, now I’m on a mission to show you how beautiful our neighbor is!

FACTS-

  1. World’s 2nd largest Muslim nation
  2. 28th May, 1998, became the 1st Islamic nation and 7th country in the world to attain nuclear power
  3. 3rd largest English-speaking population in the world.
  4. 7th largest standing armed force.
  5. 8th largest wheat producer.
  6. 5th largest gold mines.
  7. 7th largest pool of scientists and engineers.
  8. 2nd largest salt mines in Khewra which was discovered by Alexander’s troops in 320 B.C. Largest source of salt in the world.
  9. Highest paved international highway- Karakoram highway.
  10. World’s largest deep sea port- Gwadar.
  11. 2nd largest dam by volume and largest earth filled- Tarbela dam.Tarbela-Dam
  12. Oldest civilization- Indus Valley Civilization.
  13. World’s highest desert, cold desert- Skardu.
  14. Highest Polo ground- Shandur top, located in Gilgit, Pakistan. Called the ‘Roof of the World’ elevated at 12,200 ft. Gilgit and Chitral teams play polo match once a year.Shandur-Polo-Match-001
  15. World’s tallest vertical cliffs- Trango towers.
  16. Asia’s largest air base- PAF Masroor Base, Karachi.
  17. Longest Railway Gradient- Rohri to Quetta (20 tunnels, 368 bridges)rohri to quetta
  18. Shah Faisal Mosque, Islamabad can accommodate 100,000 worshipers at a time.

    Shah Faisal Mosque - Aerial View
    Shah Faisal Mosque – Aerial View
  19. Largest Irrigation Network- serves 14.4 million hectares of cultivated land. Fed by water from the Indus river.

NATURAL BEAUTY-

  1. Thar desert

.thar desert

2.Himalayan Range and K-2.

k2

3. Ranikot fort- World’s biggest fort.

ranikot

4. 62 km long Baltoro glaciers- one of the longest glaciers outside the polar region.baltoro

5. Deosai Plateau, Shangrila.

deosai plateau

6. Kaghan valley.

kaghan valley

7. Katasraj temple.

katasraj temple

8. Hunza valley.

hunza valley

9. Mir Ali valley.

mir ali valley

10. Hingor National Park, Balochistan.

hingol

11. Banjosa lake, PoK.

banjosa1

12. Helmat village, Neelum valley.

helmat village

13. Nanga Parbat- Highest face of the mountain.

nanga parbat

14. Dudipatsar lake.

dudipatsar lakw

15. Mai Pir old cave civilization.

mai pir old civilization

16. Laila peak.

laila peak

17. Mansehra.

mansehra

18. Lake Saif ul Malook, Naran.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

19. Murree.

murree

20. Rawal lake, Islamabad.

rawal lake

TALENT-

  1. Largest ambulance network run by the Edhi Foundtion. Abdul Sattar Edhi started the foundation in Karachi. Now it has branches in UK, USA, Canada, Japan and China.
  2. Sialkot is famous for making sports equipment. More than 50% of world’s footballs are made in Pakistan.
  3. Youngest Civil JudgeMuhammad Ilyas passed the exam enabling him to become a civil judge in July, 1952 at the age of 20 years and 9 months.
  4. World’s youngest Microsoft Certified Professional- (Late) Arfa Karim.
  5. Parveen Saeed, owner of Khana Ghar, started her business to provide hot meals for 3 rupees to low income individuals.
  6. Mir Zafar Ali is an Oscar winner Movie Visual Effects Curator. Worked for Spiderman- 3, X-Men and The Mummy. Won Oscar in 2007 for the movie ‘The Golden Compass’.
  7. Shoaib Akhtar known as the Pindi Express. One of the fastest bowlers in the cricket history.
  8. Sahibzada Muhammad Shahid Khan Afridi, also known as Boom Boom Afridi is the only cricketer who slapped 400 sixes in the cricket history.
  9. Amir Khan, a UK boxer of Pakistani origin who has many records under his belt.

This isn’t all what Pakistan has to offer. Pakistan is rich in culture and tradition. And what else portrays it best than the fashion industry?

Now, I have made myself a promise that I’ll be a Sabyasachi bride and nobody else, but my trousseau will have all the Pakistani designers! Sabya is a class apart designer and I adore his work, but since I’ve discovered what Pakistani women wear, I stalk each and every Pakistani designer on Instagram! My love affair with Pakistani designers started when I accidentally discovered Zehra Saleem.

11378687_1442632282721662_1040663127_n

All you fashion enthusiasts in India, you may know that recently the Bridal week was going on and Sabya collaborated with the shoe-stalwart, Louboutin. If you watched the Gauri and Nainika bridal show, and went all crazy for the dreamy gowns, I may kill your fantasy. Zehra Saleem had already designed the same dresses earlier this year! So yeah, although Gauri and Nainika‘s couture show was to die for, it didn’t impress me much, knowing that I’ve already seen this stuff in Zehra‘s collection!

TOP FASHION HOUSES-

1.Hassan Shehryar Yasin, popularly known as HSY, is the Pakistani Sabyasachi! His designs are, what you call them, La shoriat!

HSY-Bridal-Dresses-2014-2015

2.Nomi Ansari will sue me if i don’t stop spamming his feeds on Instagram!Nomi-Ansari-Beautiful-Dresses-Collection-2014-15-For-Women

3.Sana Safinaz– This Pakistani duo is making waves with their traditional designs!Bridal-fashion-week-fall-2014

4.Elan fashion house which makes couture and ready-to-wear dresses is a perfect blend of modernism and tradition.

1

5.Ali Xeeshan– Boxer Amir Khan and his beautiful wife Faryal Makhdoom introduced me to this extraordinaire fashion designer who will blow your mind with his exquisite designs. Be it his structured lehengas or chic skirts, he has everything to offer.

Ali-Xeeshan-PFDC-Collections-at-Bridal-Week-2013-02

6.Zara Shahjahan– The pleated dresses, the red carpet gowns, the pant-kurtas, the anarkalis and what not!!

Zara-Shahjahan-Bridal-2015-Summer-Collection-Designer-Prints-Embroidery-Wear-Collection-3

7.Shehla Chatoor– When you talk big names in the Pakistani film industry, you talk about Shehla Chatoor.

Shehla_Chatoor_PFDC_2014_Summer_Collection

8.Saira Rizwan– If you just Google her new bridal collection, you’ll know what she is!1-Saira-Rizwan-New-Bridal-Collection-2015-3

A great news is that you can actually shop the biggest fashion names of Pakistan in India! Pakistan Fashion Design Council has a store in New Delhi

M-4, South Extension, Part 2

New Delhi, 110049

India.

All the big fashion designers- Elan, Fahad Hussayn, HSY, Layla Chatoor, Nickie and Nina, Libas, Umar Sayeed, Sana Safinaz and many more have their collections in the Delhi store.

Pakistani talent is unparalleled for, we know this. Adnan Sami, Rahat Fateh Ali Khan, Atif Aslam and Ali Zafar are a few of the Pakistani singers who have given Indian singers a run for their money. Ali Zafar, is in fact, a very sought after actor in Bollywood with movies like Kill Dil, Mere Brother Ki Dulhan and Tere Bin Laden in his kitty. Another actor who is ruling the hearts of Indian women is Fawad Khan. With his very royal debut inΒ Khoobsurat, Fawad has engraved his name in many hearts. Humaima Malick, who debuted in Bollywood opposite Emraan Hashmi is also another Pakistani beauty making it big in the Indian film industry. In fact, with the resurrection of Lollywood, Humaima has paired with handsome hunk Sikander Rizvi to star in Dekh Magar Pyaar Say which is set to release on Pakistan’s independence day. Mikaal Zulfiqar, who played an important role in Akshay Kumar’s Baby, is also making waves in Bollywood. My personal favorite is Ayesha Omar, a fashionista in true sense, who is preparing for her upcoming movie, Karachi Se Lahore.

At what point did you think that I’m talking about a country many abhor? Pakistan is as normal as any other country.

  • A seven year old boy in Lahore is happy that he doesn’t have to go to school on 14th of August.
  • A 35 year old woman in Peshawar is busy making meals for the big dinner tonight.
  • A 62 year old man in Islamabad has brought gifts for his grandchildren.
  • A 28 year old woman in Karachi has just given birth to twins.
  • A 38 year old man in PoK in rearing sheep.
  • A 42 year old man in Gujranwala is selling sweets.
  • A 24 year old man in Lahore is in love.
  • A 20 year old woman in Multan is gushing over her new dress.
  • A 53 year old man in Islamabad is worried how he will manage to buy meals for his family.

Isn’t it familiar to you? Haven’t you experienced all these circumstances around you? Then why so much of hatred? Why blasting hate comments at strangers on Facebook and Twitter? Why blaming absolute strangers when you know nothing about them? Our struggles are same. Our victories are same. Our feelings are same.

We are totally aloof of the fact that Pakistan constitutes of people like us. People who have dreams. People who get scared. People who laugh. People who cry. People who win. People who lose. People who die. People who give birth. People who steal. People who give. All sorts of people. That is who we are. HUMANS. Not PAKISTANIS. Not INDIANS. But HUMANS.

I would love to hear your thoughts about Pakistan.

Much Love,

11140

H ❀

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Author:

Spreading love and being grateful for everything God has blessed me with. Trying to persuade people to live a happy life and give more to society.

33 thoughts on “Know Your Neighbor | Pakistan

  1. Going through your blogs.I like the flow that you have maintained in your blogs.
    This one on pakistan was a sort of eye opener,though i had heard abt edihi foundation before.well reasearched stuff.
    Btw ..if u remember i am ur school mate..:p

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Amazing post! I really appreciate your way of thinking & I believe we all should possess such type of perception. Moreover, hating a country or its people makes no sense to me as there’s good & bad everywhere so we can’t hate everything. With our love we can change the world not with hatred. πŸ™‚

    Like

      1. Love the way you write about that country….It is…but What about terrorism which is spreadedby it.firing at border…what about the death of some our army men and they were with their heads.why they hold Dawood..why they dont give any support…

        Liked by 1 person

      2. Okay dear, I get your point 😊 But do you know that same kind of news is flashed on their televisions too? They also blame India of spreading terrorism on their soil? Do you know how many Pakistanis die each year due to terrorism? My message of peace is for the innocent Pakistani people who lead their lives just like us, the common people 😊 What goes on at the diplomatic level, we will never get to know that 😊 So why not shed the hatred for a nation constituting innocent civilians and open up our hearts for them 😊 ❀

        Your apprehensions are just and but natural 😊 Like all the other Indians who have been taught since birth that Pakistan is indeed their enemy 😊 I have talked about the scenic beauty of that country, the talent that resides there. And how Pakistan is just like India 😊 I hope you get my point 😊

        Like

      3. You are right… I get your point…india believe Pakistan is bad…and vice versa.but take example of another country’s view like america.from where america found Bin Laden…we have proof against terrorism which run in Pakistan and run by them….i also believe in peace.. But one question why they don’t support india to support terrorism. We all know that Kasab was from Pakistan… They all who did 26/11 crime were from Pakistan. I am not telling Pakistan is bad..people from Pakistan is bad..but..those who don’t want peace.. Terrorist ..tell me one thing terrorist attack done by them..are they from india?..then from where…? We want to love Pakistan but they don’t give us even single chance for that.

        Liked by 1 person

      4. Limcy, my dear. People in Abottabad, from where Laden was found, say that they’ve got no idea that something like what U.S. said, ever happened. December 16 attack in Peshawar, Pakistanis think that India was behind it. They believe America to be their enemy. Pak-China connection has always bothered the U.S. but these debates will go on and on. And as I said, we will never get to know who is the real culprit. So why not concentrate on the positive side of that nation? have you ever talked to a Pakistani? They are so very polite and heartwarming people. Only we people can bring peace. The leaders will only tear us more apart πŸ™‚ And I appreciate your view on peace πŸ™‚

        Like

  3. I am a Pakistani and live in the United Kingdom. Brilliant job done Hasmeet. Media is portraying totally crap on both sides. I had my best friends, work colleagues from India and I am living with Indians from different parts of the country from a long time. I have friends from Jaipur, Hyderabad, Mumbai, Punjab, Delhi and other places in India who have shown/told me how India is actually like over the years. With all this experience, I can confidently say that we are just exactly the same, everything similar. I hope I can see India one day with my friends.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I’m extremely sorry for the kind of media reports about Pakistan being broadcast in our country. Pakistan is an actual nation, not just a peice of land cut from India. Seems like we Indians will never get this fact. I just hope that someday we live like actual neighbours! Is it possible? I dunno. But hoping against hope. And thank you so much for your beautiful insights. 😊

      Like

      1. I am really thankful for your beautiful thoughts. We are the same, why we should be sorry to each other? It’s not our fault at all, but just a few representatives who represent both countries quite wrong due to their personal interests. People have divided and named them but it’s still one piece of land on the face of this planet. I wish everyone could think like you, not only from Sub-continent but from any part of the world. In my last job, I was the only Pakistani between 5 Indians (1 guy and 4 girls) and I cannot express their love and respect for me in words. I never ever felt any difference and still in contact with all of them, we had best gossips, foods, discussions, suggestions, travelling and much more everyday then. Just ignoring media, movies are the best medium to convey message to the neighbors in our case nowadays, In addition to the Bollywood, even me and so many of country fellows like your Punjabi and other cinema movies, music and a lot more, just because people feel it, it’s everything the very same.

        Liked by 1 person

  4. Great post. I think this particular post if yours gives more insight about what it all means about a country which has been potrayed negatively just because of some clan of policy makers and some mentally retarded psychos (terrorists).
    I’m pretty sure that a lot of people from Pakistan would be thinkingthe same,having a positive opinion on india and it’s people. Now i realize the importanceof the representativesof a country. They are liable for either a good or bad opinion on any nation. But people should also think above emotions and shouldn’t be judgemental all the time and above all one shouldn’t carried away with someone else’s opinion. Thank you hasmeet. It’s good indeed to get carried away with a very beautiful opinion of yours, no offense.

    Liked by 2 people

  5. *went to london *met a pakistani *spent some time, and god in that strange land it felt like we were brothers, not sure if it was because of london environment or loneliness but being with someone who talks hindi felt a lil’ bit like being @ home even in london.
    P.S. discussing about our countries and finding out how similar we were, changed the perspective of both of us towards the other nation. By the end of the conversation i wanted to hug every soul in pakistan. And i probably would have, if i could have.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. What can I say about Pakistanis 😊 They’re the most humble people in my opinion. So connected with their roots. I guess we all need a one-to-one conversation with each other to change our perspective about our countries. Like AIB posted a video on YouTube 😊

      Liked by 1 person

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