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Late Khalid Hasan, US correspondent for the Lahore-based Daily Times and The Friday Times
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A trip to the fatherland.
[Text and pictures by Mayank Austen Soofi]
With its sultry days and breezy evenings, Karachi is cosmopolitan like Bombay, class-driven like Delhi and edgy like Baghdad. It is rich, poor, good, bad, beautiful, ugly, generous, mean.
Karachi is the city of lights. Karachi is the city of load shedding. Karachi is colonial. Karachi is Islamic. Karachi is the site of terror attacks. Karachi is the site of mushaira sessions. Busy and diverse, Karachi is Pakistan at its best. Violent and divided, Karachi is Pakistan at its worst.
Karachi has fiction writers, fashion designers, globetrotting businessmen, TV actors and glamourous socialites. Karachi has Taliban terrorists, underworld dons and gun-wielding thugs. But most people in Karachi are like me and you. They go to offices. They watch films in multiplexes. They download the latest chartbusters on cell phones. They text romance-shayiris to their lovers. They take camel rides on the beach. They go crabbing on the sea. They drink Vodka, snort cocaine and hook up sex dates on the Internet. In daily wear, they wear shalwars as well as shorts.
Like people of other cities, Karachiites buy Robert Fisks as well as John Grishams. However, they are most riotous when it comes to the language. Some speak English with an American accent. Some write in classical Urdu. Some think in Baluchi. Some dream in Sindhi.
Most Karachiites hate Karachi. Most Karachiites love Karachi
Long live Karachi.
City of Lights
Karachi Fried Chicken
Night out on the beach
Music on the street
Just another day
Don't disturb, I'm thinking
Don't tell my dad
I love Karachi