Raise Your Hand for … Alcohol

(Literally & figuratively, this is not meant to be a “dry” subject for a blog 😊)

‘Hello? I need a cab. I’m at a place called…um…looks like RAB or something.’ (cartoonstock.com)

October 31, 2019

Consumption of alcohol = fall into a stupor; Consumption of drugs = fall to your death!

I was told that one of the largest smuggling & illegal consumption of alcohol is in this region of the world … and it’s very believable!

We see this consumption around us– it’s a fact of life.  Why can’t the government and rulers over the last four decades see … accept … and monetize that? 

Our laws allow minority, permit-holders to purchase locally produced alcohol and it is taxed, which is fine.  However, far far more smuggled foreign alcohol is illegally sold and consumed (and not by minorities) – with no monetary benefit accruing to the government.  If our Governments stop policing so-called “moral values & virtues” of its citizens, the economic benefit to the Country is humungous!  

“There is a qualitative factor too- one of perception … that we are a progressive nation, a good place to live and work…” (https://cber.uark.edu/johnsonretailalcohol.pdf); and that the Country respects each person’s right to practice his/her religion as they individually choose (their “sins” are between them and God).

The government taxes local alcohol production; so why is importing – and taxing – foreign alcohol “haram”?  “Interest” on loans is considered “haram” – then why is it still paid on World Bank, IFC and other multilateral loans.  Let’s be pragmatic and collect revenues- not hypocritical and suffer socially, economically and morally. 

By allowing sale of higher-cost, imported alcohol with lower-cost, local production – one covers all social sectors of the population as per their income levels.

(p.s.- as is apparent, I’m not covering the negatives of alcohol consumption 😊)

…and the Naatak entertained us this weekend!

October 15, 2019

(In Gujrati, “Naatak” = “play”)

Mix Breed”, based on a Parsi family who have to face “intermarriage” issues, is a light portrayal of the real-world issues our Community is facing.   With double meanings and inflections, the cast (90% of whom learnt Gujrati “on the job”!) entertained the Gujrati speaking communities of Karachi.

The Script was written by Mrs Huzan Wadia, who has successfully acted & directed it in Mumbai; and selflessly extended the script on a gratis basis to Natalia Karanjia in Karachi, this play being the latter’s directorial debut.  Yay to Natalia!

This is what Karachi, and Pakistan, lacks- ENTERTAINMENT.  We have food & drink and ………… hmmmmm.  Play and theatre is picking up in Pakistan but to a very restricted market.  The mainstream citizens do not get to enjoy theatre on a regular basis- whether drama, comedy, musical.  Our cast explained to me the ‘power’ of theatre – they get their rush when the crowd reacts with them- it’s a powerful, intoxicating feeling; there are no second chances for a mistake; and when you make a mistake, you have to think on your feet and keep going.

In the 2000 decade our media was opened – creating a new source of employment – for budding theatre artists, actors, directors, writers, film makers, etc.  It’s a growth market but we have to create more facilities for this talent to be nurtured, taught, portrayed – AND WITH IT allowing us citizens to enjoy these productions and enriching our lives.  Kudos to the NAPAs, Arts Councils and other such facilities – but we need more!

(The naatak was sponsored by the 109 year-old Young Mazdyasnian Zoroastrian Association (YMZA) and the Karachi Parsi Anjuman- however it is not meant to be any endorsement or official or unofficial stance of the Anjuman, the YMZA or any individual thereof)

Avari Towers Hi-Tea – What To Expect?

Unum's Musings

I was invited to Avari Towers to partake in their newly launched Hi-Tea last week and I’ve been meaning to write about it since then.

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Avari Towers is now offering Hi-Tea in their Asia Live restaurant between 04:00 pm and 06:30 pm Monday to Saturday. Avari Towers used to host Hi-Tea way back in the day and I’m glad that they are offering it again.

So, coming to ambiance; Ambiance of Asia Live is pleasing. It’s a fine dining restaurant and meets all expectations. It’s the kind of place where you can go for date night as well take someone for a fancy treat or invite guests.

Food offered at Avari Towers Hi-Tea ranged from their delicious salads that I’m a big fan of to snacks like samosas and pakoras. Various kinds of sandwiches, channa chaat, dahi baray, daleem, fish fingers, pig in the blanket, Alfred penne pasta, vegetable chowmein…

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