News Buzz

December 2021

Melody Makers

A book titled ‘101 Melody Makers of India and Pakistan and their Representative Work’ compiled by Sultan Arshad Khan, was launched in Karachi recently.

Javed Jabbar said on the occasion that ’101 Melody Makers’ was an encyclopaedia..

S M Shahid, Arshad Mahmud, Sultana Siddiqui and Bushra Ansari said the volume represented the music history of the Indian sub-continent. It was a comprehensive study about the leading music personalities of India and Pakistan.

It took the compiler about 20 years to complete the book based on extensive research and in-depth knowledge. And compilation of memories and personal experiences with the leading singers and musicians.

Tales of Umro Ayyar

Making waves among celebrities, the mystery of the intriguing looking box and metallic pendant on social media has finally been revealed. The hype was about Pakistan’s first Urdu comic book Umro Ayyar that has now been turned into a film that will be released in 2022.

Directed by Azfar Jafri, the film unveiled its first teaser with a 49-second-clip revealing the title of the project with intense background music. It features Osman Khalid Butt, Naimal Khawar Khan, Faran Tahir, Sanam Saeed, Ali Kazmi, Adnan Siddiqui, Usman Mukhtar and others.

The film is based on a very popular character that we all grew up reading about, Umro Ayyar. The character has appeared in ‘Dastan-i-Amir Hamza’, a collection of stories about magic, adventure and intrigue written over 1,000 years ago. The stories have travelled across several Muslim countries over time, becoming an integral part of their literary heritage.

Women Smashing Patriarchy

‘Qatil Haseenaon Ke Naam’, the coming Pakistani series on Zee5, is grabbing attention for all the right reasons. The teaser shows an unapologetic side of women who are ready to kill but won’t compromise. The song playing behind the teaser is quite catchy.

The teaser also emphasizes on the theme of female empowerment, focusing on the fearlessness of women and their determination to avenge deceit.

The series has performers like Samiya Mumtaz, Beo Raana Zafar, Faiza Gillani, Sarwat Gilani, Sanam Saeed, Mehar Bano and Eman Suleman. It also stars Ahsan Khan, Osman Khalid Butt and Sheheryar Munawar.

Written by Farjad Nabi and Meenu Gaur, ‘Qatil Haseenaon Ke Naam’ is directed by Meenu Gaur and produced by Hasan Abidi and Shailja Kejriwal for ZEE5.

Champions Trophy 2025

The International Cricket Council (ICC) has announced that the Men’s Champions Trophy in 2025 will take place in Pakistan.

It will be the first major global cricket tournament to be played in Pakistan since 1996 when it hosted the Men’s Cricket World Cup with India and Sri Lanka. The final was played in Lahore with Sri Lanka claiming the title.

The ICC Champions Trophy was also scheduled to be played in Pakistan in 2009 but it was moved to England due to security reasons. The tournament was moved out of Pakistan after three countries — Australia, England and New Zealand —refused to tour the country over security fears months after an attack on the Sri Lankan team in Lahore.

The Chairman of the Pakistan Cricket Board Ramiz Raja termed the news as a matter of great pride and delight for the country. Former cricketers and sports enthusiasts also rejoiced and congratulated the PCB and fans in Pakistan.

Patreon to Challenge YouTube

Patreon is creating a video-hosting solution and native player for all its content creators by launching a podcast called ‘The Creator Economy’. Being a membership platform, Patreon provides content creators with business tools to run a subscription service.

The new feature will presumably allow creators to host and share videos without leaving the platform. Patreon app will drive more users to the app and avoid YouTube altogether. The company’s patron, Vimeo, will also become less important once the feature is launched.

Foodpanda Tests Pandafly Drones

Foodpanda, Pakistan’s leading food delivery company and also the country’s leading e-commerce platform, has launched a pilot project to test food delivery through a customised drone. The test flight took place in the F-9 Park in Islamabad.

A food package weighing approximately 2.5kg was taken from a restaurant at one end of the park by a Foodpanda rider and loaded into the drone’s storage bag. The drone then delivered the package to the other end of the park, where it was collected by another rider and distributed to children invited from ‘Sweet Homes’ for the occasion.

The use of disruptive technology by the company in the future will mean faster deliveries over longer distances. The technology is the first of its kind in Pakistan.

Good News for Overseas Pilgrims

Saudi Arabia has launched a new service to facilitate overseas pilgrims in getting Umrah and visit permits for Holy Mosques in Makkah and Madina through mobile applications.

The ministry urged all users of Eatmarna and Tawakkalna applications to take the initiative and update the two applications on their mobile app stores. Saudi Arabia’s Ministry of Hajj announced that pilgrims wishing to perform Umrah will no longer be required to wait for 14 days to book for the ritual.

Some months ago, the Saudi Ministry of Interior eased restrictions across the kingdom, allowing a full return to operations and capacity.

Frida Kahlo Sells for $35 Million

The painting shows a teary-eyed Kahlo with her hair loose around her, a portrait of Rivera bearing a third eye embedded above her brow. The portrait was auctioned at Sotheby’s and was sold for a record $35 million, the highest price ever paid for a painting by a Latin American artist!

Kahlo had spent long periods bed-ridden after a traffic accident in her youth. She created some 200 paintings, sketches, and drawings. Her work features mainly self-portraits. It transformed her misfortune into works of bold colour and emblematic strength.

Frida Kahlo attained international fame after her death in 1954 and was recognized as a feminist icon after the 1970s.

‘The Donkey King’ Headed for China

The Donkey King, the highest-grossing Pakistani animated film by Aziz Jindani, has become the first Pakistani film to get a wide theatrical release in China. The character of Mangu in the film has already played the role of global ambassador for Pakistani cinema.

The dubbed version of the hit film has had its theatrical release in Spain, South Korea, Russia, Greece, Turkey, Peru, Colombia, Ecuador, Ukraine, Kazakhstan and Taiwan.

The animated comedy film was released in Pakistan in October 2018 and has been produced by Geo Films and Talisman Studios. The original version features the voices of Jan Rambo, Ismail Tara, Hina Dilpazeer, Ghulam Mohiuddin and Javed Sheikh.

Usman Shinwari retires from Test cricket

Fast bowler Usman Shinwari has announced his retirement from Test cricket. He has represented Pakistan in one Test match and played 33 first-class matches.

The player posted the news on social media saying, “I have made my comeback again from a back injury and now I am fit but due to my doctors’ and physio’s advice, I have to leave the long format to avoid such injuries in future and prolong my cricket career. I am resigning from red ball.”

The pacer has also played 17 ODIs and 16 T20 Internationals representing Pakistan.

Sonya Hussain Wins Best Actress Award

The PISA Awards, held in Dubai, awarded Sonya Hussain with her first-ever Best Actress Award. The actress broke down in tears while receiving the trophy as she expressed gratitude for her well-deserved recognition.

She said that during the seven years of her acting career and 16 nominations later, she is finally receiving the honour.

Sonya made her acting debut with the TV series ‘Dareecha’. Her performance in ‘Aisi Hai Tanhai’ earned her a nomination for Best Television Actress at Lux Style Awards.

She has appeared in several films as well.

‘Khel Khel Mein’ Recreates 1971 Dhaka Fall

Directed and produced by Nabeel Qureshi and Fiza Ali Meerza, under the banner of Filmwala Pictures, ‘Khel Khel Mein‘ features Sajal Aly and Bilal Abbas as leads. The film was recently released in theatres with the story plot recreating the 1971 Dhaka fall. The scene is not an ISPR narrative but a fresh take and shows the hard work of the cast and crew.

Nabeel has expertise both with the script and camera. His debut feature film ‘Na Maloom Afraad’ won the LUX Style Award for Best Film Director, followed by ‘Actor in Law’ in 2016 for which he again won an award for Best Director. ‘Khel Khel Mein’ is definitely worth watching.

Action Thriller

After almost two years of delay, the trailer and release date of ‘Kahay Dil Jidhar’ featuring Junaid Khan and Mansha Pasha has been revealed. The film will be released in cinemas across Pakistan on Dec 17, 2021.

The trailer of the film shows Junaid Khan and Mansha Pasha as college sweethearts but end up as rivals in the professional field. Mansha accuses Junaid of being related to the drug mafia. The trailer features the lead cast’s journey from college students to professionals fighting each other. Junaid Khan is seen playing a police officer while Mansha Pasha plays a fearless journalist.

Ed Sheeran Collaborates With Elton John

British singer and songwriter Ed Sheeran has announced his latest collaboration with veteran musician Elton John on Christmas.

The singer posted a photo of him with the 74-year-old musician saying, “Coming soon!” While the 30-year-old singer is seen wearing a Mrs. Claus outfit, to promote their new tune, John is sitting with a big smile on his face. It seems that they both are aiming for Christmas number one this year.