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Archive for July, 2017

From perjury to forgery – 14 Wi Sawal Ke Baad By Dr Babar Awan

 From perjury to forgery

14 Wi Sawal Ke Baad 


Dr Babar Awan

(Dated: 21 July 2017)

14 Wi Sawal Ke Baad (3) By Dr Babar Awan (Dr. Zaheer-ud-din Babar Awan) (Dated: 21 July 2017)


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5 Famous Folk Love Stories from Pakistan in DESIblitz By HASEEB AHSEN

5 Famous Folk Love Stories from Pakistan

Love stories are an essential part of Pakistani folklore. We bring you five of these tales of love and tragedy which have been immortalised to this day.

5 Love Legends from Pakistan
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The iconic characters of folklore can easily be seen in Pakistani culture today

If there is one consistent subject throughout the folklore of Pakistan, it is love.

It is the most prominent and notable theme around which many of the notable folk tales of Punjab and Sindh revolve.

These love stories follow different pathways but arrive at one similar ending – the perishing of lovers while fighting for each other.

The iconic characters of folklore can easily be seen in Pakistani culture today. Innumerable songs, movies, poems, books, and TV series keep them immortal.

DESIblitz reveals five of the most legendary folk love stories from Pakistan, some of which also span to India pre-partition.

Heer Ranjha

Heer Ranjha

Heer Ranjha is a story of great despair, narrated by Waris Shah. It is a tragic tale of two lovers.

Ranjha, whose real name was Deedo was a fortunate man in some ways, but unfortunate in many others. He was the youngest of four brothers and his father favoured him the most.

When his father passed, his brother’s refused to give him any share in the farm land. He was badly treated by them, forcing him to leave the village. He left for Takht Hazara, hoping to find a better fortune.

In this new village, he came across a farm, much like the one he was banished from. This is where he laid his eyes on the most beautiful lady he had ever seen. He instantly fell in love with her and from that moment onwards, it was his sole mission to make her fall in love with him.

It was Heer, and Ranjha got a job of herding her father’s cattle. One thing led to another and Heer also fell hopelessly in love with Ranjha. She was captivated by the beautiful music he played on his flute.

For next few years, their secret affair went on wonderfully, until one day they were caught. Kaido, Heer’s uncle, told on them and Ranjha was exiled from the village.

Lost again, he wandered across Punjab, travelling from city to city till he met a band of Jogis. Ranjha decided to relinquish the material world, dedicate the rest of his life to the Lord.

The new pious Ranjha returned to Takht Hazara, and Heer’s parents agreed for their marriage. The young lovers rejoiced at this revelation, but fate had something else in the store for them.

Kaido conspired to poison Heer in an attempt to sabotage their marriage. Clueless Heer devoured on the food laced with poison.

When Ranjha found out about this, it was already too late. Struck with grief, he made the decision to end his life. He ate the same food. Their lifeless corpses laid next to each other and the lovers were now united in death.

They were buried in the Heer’s hometown of Takht Hazara near Jhang, Punjab. Their graves are regularly visited by couples.

There are several films made on this love legend, including Heer Ranjha (1992) starring Sridevi as Heer, Anil Kapoor as Ranjha, and Heer Ranjha (2009) starring Neeru Bajwa as Heer, Harbhajan Mann as Ranjha. Other adaptations include the 1970 film starring Raaj Kumar and Priya Rajvansh.

Mirza Sahiban

Mirza Sahiban

Mirza Sahiban love story emerged from Punjab, during the Mughal Era. Mirza was from Punjab and belonged to a tribe of Jats, the Kharals. Sahiban belonged to the Sial tribe.

Mahni Khan, the father of Sahiban, was chief of Kheewa, a town in Punjab’s Jhang district.

Mirza’s father was Wanjhal Khan, who was a Chaudhary in the tribe of Kharal Jatts, in the Jaranwala, which is now Faisalabad.

Mirza went to Khivan in order to study. He fell in love with Sahiban soon after he saw her for the very first time.

Sahiban’s marriage was arranged soon after they became lovers, and she sent a message to Mirza. Mirza, who was attending the marriage ceremony of his sister, immediately left for Sahiban’s village.

Mirza took Sahiban away from her marriage ceremony on his mare. They hid in the forest, where they were caught by her brothers. Mirza was an expert archer, but he was unable to defend himself.

Sahiban broke all of his arrows, hoping to avoid any bloodshed. Mirza put up a fight but didn’t last long, and was killed by her brothers. Sahiban ended her life right there with Mirza’s sword.

This love story is a now part of the Punjabi culture. There are numerous folk songs by singers like Harbhajan Mann, Kuldeep Manak, Gurmeet Bawa, and many others.

Sassi Punnu

Sassi Punnu

Sassi Punnu is one of the Seven Queens of Shah Abdul Latif Bhittai. The narrator of this story is the famous Sufi poet, Shah Abdul Latif Bhittai (1689-1752).

Sassi’s father was King of Bhamboor, but upon her birth, an astrologer predicted that Sassi was cursed and would bring shame to the prestige of this royal family.

The Queen ordered her to be put in a box and thrown in the Indus River. A washer man found her and decided to raise her as his own.

Punnu Khan was the son of King Mir Hoth Khan. He belonged to the Makran area of Baluchistan.

Sassi’s beauty became a fairy tale as she grew up. Stories of her divine beauty spread across the region, and this inspired Punnu to meet her. When he reached the house of the washer-man and laid his eyes on the beautiful Sassi, he immediately fell in love with her.

Punnu asked the washer-man for Sassi’s hand in marriage, who initially refused but agreed if only Punnu passes trial as a washer-man. He failed miserably but still managed to convince the washer-man.

When this news travelled to the family of Punnu, they instantly opposed this arrangement because this was an unacceptable match for them. His brothers deviously attended the marriage ceremony but intoxicated him and took him back to Makran.

Sassi lost her mind when she was met with this news. She ran barefoot through the desert towards the hometown of Punnu. Her feet blistered, her dry lips parched from constantly crying the name of her lover.

She met a shepherd whom she asked for help, but instead, he tried to violate her. She barely managed to escape.

The legend has it that when she couldn’t take any more, she prayed and the mountains split and buried her alive. When Punnu woke up, he was devastated too.

He ran towards the village of Sassi, when he reached that mountain he met the shepherd who told him what happened to Sassi. In a fit of grief, he lamented and the earth swallowed him too.

Their legendary graves still exist in that valley. Shah Abdul Latif Bhittai narrated this historic tale in his poetry, which tells the story of eternal love and union with Divine.

Sohni and Mahiwal

Sohni Mahiwal

Sohni was born in the home of a potter, in a village at the bank of Indus River. She grew up learning how to draw floral designs on the items of pottery her father made.

Izzat Baig was an Uzbek trader from Bukhara, whose business trip became a permanent stay once he laid his eyes on Sohni. He would visit the potter’s shop every day just so that he could get a glimpse of Sohni.

Sohni fell in love with him too. Now her art turned from flowers to shades of her love and dreams. Izzat Baig decided to stay and took a job at the home of Sohni. He would take the buffaloes to grazing, which earned him the name of ‘Mahiwal’.

When rumours of their love started to spread, her parents arranged her marriage with another potter. ‘Barat’ suddenly showed up one day and Sohni was married before she could do anything.

This completely turned the life of Mahiwal upside down. He renounced the material world and became a Jogi. The land of Sohni was a shrine for him. The lovers would meet secretly at night.

Sohni came to the riverside and Mahiwal swam across the river to see each other. Mahiwal brought a roasted fish every day for Sohni.

Legend has it that one day he couldn’t find any fish so he took a slice of meat from his leg and roasted it instead.

Mahiwal was unable to swim so Sohni started coming towards his side using a ‘Matti Ka Ghara’ (earthen pitcher). One day, it was replaced by an unbaked one by her sister-in-law, who was spying on her.

The pitcher dissolved in the river water and Sohni drowned. In his attempts to save her, Mahiwal lost his life too. Their bodies were said to be recovered and their tomb is in the city of Shahdapur, Sindh.

A Bollywood film, Sohni-Mahiwal (1984) was also made starring Sunny Deol and Poonam Dhillon.

Momal Rano

Momal Rano

Momal Rano (or Mumal Rano) is one of the seven popular tragic romance stories from Sindh and appears in Shah Jo Risalo by Shah Abdul Latif Bhittai.

Mumal Rathore was a princess from Jaisalmer, India. She lived in a palace with her sisters. The Kak Palace held magical powers and attracted rich suitors for the sisters. The tales about the palace and Mumal’s ravishing beauty became a legend.

Rana Mahendra Sodha was the ruler of Amar Kot, Sindh. He was attracted to the magical Kak and decided to pay it a visit.

Rana was a courageous man and he reached the palace without any harm. This impressed Mumal so much that she accepted him as her consort. He would spend nights at the palace and then return to Umer Kot at dawn. Rana covered long distances from AmarKot to Kak to be with Mumal.

One day, Rano got late for some reason. Mumal became frustrated because of this delay. She decided to prank him by a silly trick. She asked her sister to dress like a man and sleep in the bed with her. Rano was enraged by the sight.

Out of anger and disgust, Rano left his cane beside Mumal’s bed and departed for Umer Kot. Rano ignored all pleading from Mumal.

Desperate, Mumal set herself on fire. When Rano heard about it, it was too late and Mumal was engulfed in flames. Rano jumped into the fire and was burned along with Mumal.

These tales have rich characters that reflect the time and society they lived in.

The stories are not just meant for the young and those in love, but for anyone with a sense of deep emotion. They are narrated for their message of tradition and love.


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2/3rd Majority by Col. Riaz Jafri (Retd) 


July 18th, 2017

2/3rd Majority

During the ongoing PANAMA hearings by the SC,  many a stalwart of the PML (N) leadership has hinted at going to the Awami Court who they claim had returned MNS with 2/3 majority.  Just to be sure, I dug up some of the old newspapers and found the following:















Party Total votes bagged (May 12, 1 pm)
PML-N 9,781,703
PTI 3,633,060
PPP 3,381,223
MQM 2,108,360
PML-Q 834,572
PML-F 610,906
JUI-F 278,636
JI 91,668


The total number of the registered voters for the 2013 election was  86,194,802


Thus PML (N) polled  9,781,703  / 86,194,802  X 100 = 11.35 per cent  which is not even simple 51% majority what to talk of 2/3rd majority. It is as simple as that out of 86,194,802 registered voters a very hefty number of  76,413,099 voters did not vote for it.


Do they have any moral justification of going to them for the final decision?



Col. Riaz Jafri (Retd)
30 Westridge 1
Rawalpindi 46000
E.mail: jafri@rifiela.com


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Fontgate’: Wikipedia halts edits on its page on Microsoft’s ‘Calibri’ font

In the wake of the revelation that Microsoft’s Calibri font was applied in alleged forged documents in the Panama Papers investigation, Wikipedia received a myriad of edit requests prompting it to block public editing on its page about the font.



“This article is currently protected from editing until July 18, 2017, or until editing, disputes have been resolved,” said the notification on top of the ‘Calibri’ page of the online encyclopaedia, The Times of India reported.

On Tuesday alone, there were 35 revisions made to the Wikipedia’s article page on the font. And just a day earlier, a Pakistani team investigating Prime Minister Sharif’s alleged illegal offshore properties – flagged in the Panama Papers – released its final report that mentioned ‘Calibri’.

That report surmised that some of the documents it received from Sharif’s daughter, Maryam Nawaz Sharif, were forged because they used Microsoft’s ‘Calibri’ font.

Damning indictment: JIT suggests filing NAB reference against Sharif family

In and of itself, that was not a problem. There was just the small matter of the documents being from 2006 when the font was not available for public use. Microsoft only released it for public use back in 2007.

“The originals of the certified declarations are not correctly dated and have been created at some later point in time,” the Pakistani investigative team’s report stated.

The anomaly was flagged by London’s Redley Forensic Document Laboratory to whom the Pakistani team has sent the documents for authentication.

A columnist tweeted a screengrab of the laboratory’s comment on Maryam’s documents.”I have identified the type font used to produce both certified Declarations as ‘Calibri’. However, Calibri was not commercially available before January 31, 2007, and as such, neither of the originals of the certified Declarations is correctly dated and happy [sic] to have been created at some later point in time,” is the comment from the London forensic investigator Robert W. Radley, based on the screengrab.



A newspaper decided to get in touch with Lucas de Groot, the designer who created ‘Calibri’. They asked him if the font was available in February 2006, when Maryam said the documents were from. De Groot’s company, LucasFonts, replied saying the final design of the font was sent to Microsoft “not before March 2004”. Subsequent to that, it was only used in beta versions “intended for programmers and technology freaks”.

“As the file size of such operating systems is huge, it would have been a serious effort to get,” LucasFonts said, indicating that it is unlikely anyone else got a hold of the font for sustained use in documents from that time.

United in opposition: With one voice, PTI, PPP ask PM to step down

It added that the first public beta version of ‘Calibri’ was published in 2006. Wikipedia said it was released on June 6, 2006. Maryam’s documents are said to be from four months before that.

Twitter was abuzz with jokes about the whole issue and there were a few conspiracy theories as well. One person said the revisions to Wikipedia’s ‘Calibri’ page pointed to an attempt to change the date of release of the font by Microsoft. Dubbed #FontGate, the hashtag was trending on Twitter for most of Tuesday.

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The Joint Investigation Team (JIT), has submitted a damning report

 Damning evidence –

Another Offshore Company Revealed

ISLAMABAD: The Joint Investigation Team (JIT), which submitted a damning report on the offshore assets of the Sharif family on Monday, has come up with some crucial evidence which might be sufficient to send Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif packing. The six-member probe team has submitted a key document to confirm that Sharif was employed with the Capital FZE as its board chairman from August 6, 2006 to April 20, 2014.Damning indictment: JIT suggests filing NAB reference against Sharif family The document – a letter from Shehab Sultan Mesmar of the Jebel Ali Free Zone Authority (JAFZA) dated July 4 – has been issued in response to the JIT’s query about Sharif’s ownership in the offshore company.


The JIT stated that Sharif had been chairman of the Board for Capital FZE from August 7, 2006 to April 20, 2014 at a salary of 10,000 dirhams. The salary was revised on February 2, 2007 vide Employment Contract Amendment Form 9 – duly signed by respondent No 1 i.e. the prime minister – filed with JAFZA.“On the basis of this employment, respondent No 1 was able to procure ‘Iqama’, dated 5-7-2009, and valid up to 4-6-2015 to work and reside in Dubai,” says the JIT report.


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