News Buzz

May 2022

Lifetime Achievement Awards

Nayyar Ali Dada, a renowned architect, and Amjad Islam Amjad, a prominent Urdu poet and playwright, have been conferred with lifetime achievement awards at the Lahore Literary Festival (LLF-2022). The LLF is an international literary festival, which is considered to be one of South Asia’s premier cultural events. Nayyar Ali Dada is one of the most celebrated architects in Pakistan. He is a pioneer in revolutionizing the field of architecture in the country. Since the time he was a student, Dada has been active in the field and inspires young students in many different ways. Amjad Islam Amjad, is author of more than 40 books in a career spanning 50 years. He has received many awards for his literary works and screenplays for TV, including Pride of Performance and Sitara-e-Imtiaz.

Z9 Nikon Launched

Nikon’s mirror-less camera, Z9 has been launched in Pakistan. The Z9 has specs designed to meet the needs and standards of professional video production studios. The Z9 features has the world’s best AF scene detection system and best-in-class 8K video resolution and internal recording.

Elon Musk Buys Twitter

The Board of Twitter has agreed to a $44bn (£34.5bn) takeover offer from the billionaire Elon Musk. The firm initially rebuffed Musk’s bid, but it will now ask shareholders to vote to approve the deal. Musk is the world’s richest person, according to Forbes magazine, with an estimated net worth of $273.6bn mostly due to his shareholding in electric vehicle maker Tesla which he runs. He also leads the aerospace firm SpaceX.

Rehbra’s Trailer Launched

Rehbra, a rom-com action flick, depicting a slice-of-life and comedy, directed by Amin Iqbal and produced by Saira Afzal, recently released its teaser trailer announcing its release date: 24th June. Featuring Ayesha Omar and Ahsan Khan who are playing the lead roles, the ensemble cast includes Ghulam Mohyuddin, Sohail Sameer and Saba Faisal. An SA Entertainment film, Rehbra is all set to release on 24th June, 2022 in cinemas across Pakistan by Mandviwalla Entertainment. Rehbra’s promotional posters and teasers have already created anticipation among the film’s fans.

5th IPPA Awards

IPPA (International Pakistan Prestige Awards) has recently announced the fifth IPPA scheduled for Dallas, Texas, USA, in July this year. IPPA are the only independent Pakistani awards that have consistently been doing successful shows abroad.

IPPA aims to project a positive image of Pakistan abroad and has been successful in showcasing Pakistani talent in drama, films, music and fashion. According to co-founder IPPA, Mukhtar Ahmed, IPPA has joined hands with AZ Entertainment, a highly successful US-based company to host the fifth IPPA in Dallas, Texas, on July 23, 2022.

TikTok Popular among Pakistani Politicians

As TikTok remains one of the most popular social media platforms in Pakistan, political parties in the country are using the Chinese video-sharing platform to reach their activists and communicate with their constituents. Initially, when the Chinese app reached Pakistan, several TikTokers became celebrities on the platform. Slowly, Pakistani showbiz celebrities, cricketers, news anchors, religious scholars and fashion designers started using TikTok. Today, TikTok has a user base of 31.2 million. Looking at the popularity of TikTok, political parties and their leadership created TikTok accounts. Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf has a strong presence on TikTok and its verified accounts have 654,000 followers. According to storage software company Cloudflare’s latest updates, TikTok is the most visited platform in Pakistan, followed by Facebook and Google. respectively.

Johnny Depp Testimony

Actor Johnny Depp concluded his testimony in the defamation case he filed against ex-wife Amber Heard, saying he was the victim of domestic violence in their relationship and was “broken” by the time their marriage fell apart. Depp’s fourth day on the witness stand in a Virginia court ended with his attorneys playing audio from a conversation that took place after Heard had secured a restraining order against him in 2016. The Pirates of the Caribbean star said he agreed to Heard’s request to meet in a San Francisco hotel room because he thought she might retract her accusation that he had abused her.

The Prospects of Livestock Bartering

Fariel Salahuddin is a Barter Economist in Pakistan and the Netherlands. She is a finance expert and founder of UpTrade, a company helping Pakistani farming communities to use their livestock to acquire civic-improvement assets (like water pumps and solar lights) instead of cash. She aims to make livestock bartering in Pakistan as common as micro-finance in order to provide farmers higher value for their assets, relieve onerous debt, eliminate the need for charity funding and build self-reliance.

Goats For Water
Fariel Salahuddin began her career after graduate school in infrastructure development, which led to a 10-year career in energy development. She specialized in advising governments in power sector investment and strategy. Yet, despite her high-flying career, she felt she could make a bigger impact on the world.

Her course began to change when she began visiting villages in Pakistan with her uncle and began to see that even more than energy, people in remote areas needed access to water. They were either using expensive diesel generators, which they couldn’t afford, to run all the time or women would have to spend hours in backbreaking labour to carry water back to the village.

She had an epiphany when she noticed that every village, no matter how poor, had an abundance of goats. That’s what first gave her the idea of trading livestock for solar pumps. Her first deal was for 40 goats. Later, she joined the second cohort of Spring Accelerator and launched her career as a social entrepreneur and the concept, ‘Goats for Water’ was born.
Today, Fariel is working at Goats for Water full-time.

“Now we know the model works and we are looking to scale it,” she says. “We realized that we can apply our approach to any kind of livestock and and kind of technology. Even the world’s poorest villages have wealth in livestock.”

Ms Marvel and Pakistani Artist

We have been anxiously waiting for Ms Marvel - Marvel’s upcoming series on its first-ever Pakistani Muslim superhero, Kamala Khan. While the buzz around the upcoming show has been rife, Marvel has now released its official poster. And what’s more, it features artwork by a Pakistani artist, Shehzil Malik. Playing the role of Kamala Khan/Ms Marvel is Iman Vellani. The cast also includes Fawad Khan, Mehwish Hayat, Nimra Bucha, Aramis Knight, Matt Lintz, Saagar Shaikh, Rish Shah, Ze-nobia Shroff, Mohan Kapur, Yasmeen Fletcher, Laith Naki, Azhar Usman and Travina Springer. Ms Marvel, which is a part of the Marvel Cinematic Universe’s Phase 4, will premiere on Disney+ in the summer of 2022. The show is created by Bisha K Ali.

‘Ishrat Made In China’ Hits Cinemas

The film ‘Ishrat Made In China’ has hit cinemas across Pakistan. Produced by Ek Alif and Eleven Eleven Films and directed by Mohib Mirza, the film stars Sanam Saeed, Mohib Mirza, HSY, Sara Loren, Shamoon Abbasi, Nayyer Ejaz, Shabbir Jan, Mustafa Chaudhry, Mani, Ali Kazmi and Imam Syed. The romantic action-comedy film has a lot of firsts including a multi-starrer main cast, an epic climax with a 20-minute action scene, and available on the digital platform after its release. The film also marks the big-screen debut of veteran Shabbir Jan and the king of couture HSY.