Editorial – Magazine

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Our special feature, this month, is “December 16: wounds that never heal”. We are taken back in time to that bone-chilling day in December 2014, when suddenly TV screens were flled up with news and images of an unbelievably horrific drama unfolding inside the classrooms of Army Public School, Peshawar.

“APS Tragedy” as it is now called has earned its place as the biggest single-day shock Pakistani nation has ever received since the fall of Dacca in 1971. 150 children and teachers that were massacred by Afghanistan based terrorists have disappeared as a tiny fgure inside more than 70,000 people Pakistan has lost to the war on terror, it fought to support United States’ presence in Afghanistan.

In this issue, we interview Waleed Khan, a former pupil of APS, who was on stage in the auditorium on that harrowing day and was shot eight times. GVS looks at the miracle of his life and spirit. Forty-seven years earlier, on the same day, the country that had been envisaged by the leaders of the Lahore declaration was no more.

East Pakistan became an independent nation, Bangladesh. We ask Ikram Sehgal, a prisoner of war in India in April 1971 and a defense analyst why this happened? David Bergman’s piece explains why the three million deaths stated by the Bangladeshi government has no basis in facts.

Sultan Hali explains the current distressing plight and the forgotten deaths of those in the Bihari community killed by the Mukhti Bahini and other groups during the 1971 war of separation. Brigadier Asif Haroon Raja runs us through all the reasons why we should refect on this tragedy and avoid a repetition.

December brings joy to our Christian brothers and Asif Aqeel takes us on a winding path through the past and explains the origins of Christmas day festivities. The December issue would also be incomplete without recalling the memories of Benazir Bhutto; 2 December 1988, the frst woman to become the leader of a Muslim nation.

On this day a heartfelt joy was felt by the millions – especially the young who rejoiced that Zia Ul Haq’s Islamization phase was fnally over. Benazir tragically was also martyred on 27 December, Muhammad Ziauddin, a veteran journalist for over 55 years describes the legacy of this ‘Daughter of the East’.

PTI government has just completed its 100 days, a target which they proudly set out for themselves, in which they would set a direction for the country. But more than anything this period has been driven in terms of Bill Clinton’s famous 1992 campaign phrase ‘It’s the Economy, Stupid’. PTI has been fre-fghting on this front on an emergency footing.

Prime Minister Khan and his team in this period have gone to Saudi Arabia (twice), UAE, China, and Malaysia; they have not come back empty-handed. The team has raised enough funding in the short term, that Asad Umar the fnance minister has said they would not need to go to the IMF in the next couple of months.

In this issue, we interview Haroon Sharif, Chairman Board of Investment, to ask him how he intends to bring investment to Pakistan, what does he see on the horizon and what should be the focus of policymakers. Kamran Nasir, CEO JS Global, explains why stock markets should be used to drive the Pakistani economy, and Tariq Jamali President National Bank Pakistan explains the importance of banking in reviving the economy.

Dr Nadeem Haque former Deputy Planning Chairman exhorts the government to move away from the ‘brown babu’ driven colonial mindset and rearrange and develop cities to encourage productivity and growth. This is just some of the issues we cover, do fip through and enjoy our wanderlust and movie sections and give us your feedback.

Enjoy reading and do give us your feedback.

Najma Minhas

Managing Editor

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