WAPDA becomes National Cricket Championship 2016-17

Owais Mughal

Year-by-Year Tabulation of QeA Trophy Winners and Runners Up:

Wapda beat Habib Bank to win their first Quaid-e-Azam title in Karachi in Dec, 2016.

This year it was the 61st edition of QA trophy.

Following table gives the complete listing of years the tournament has been played and the winners and runners up of every year.

1. 1953/54: Bahawalpur (1st) and Punjab (2nd)
2. 1954/55: Karachi (1st) and Pakistan Combined Services (2nd)
3. 1956/57: Punjab (1st) and Karachi Whites (2nd)
4. 1957/58: Bahawalpur (1st) and Karachi C (2nd)
5. 1958/59: Karachi (1st) and Pakistan Combined Services (2nd)
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A Walk through Karachi’s Empress Market

Owais Mughal

On my recent trip to Pakistan, I tried to re-live some of the fondest memories of my early youth. One of them was daily travel in public buses during my college days. In order to relive that experience, I decided to take a trip to Empress Market by bus.

Photo to the left shows Empress Market. I took this photo from the overhead pedestrain bridge on the morning of Jan 11, 2007.

At Karaimabad market bus stop, I made a hand gesture to an approaching route 5C bus. The bus driver made eye contact with me and acknowledged by slowing down. The norm in Karachi is that a bus never comes to a full halt for a single ‘sawari’ (passenger) because monetary profits from a single passenger fare is not worth breaking the engine motion. Therefore when bus slowed down to a speed of approximately 5 kmph, I quickly jumped in by grabbing on to the hand rail. It was a proud moment for me to realize that after all these years I have not forgotten the art of climbing onto a moving bus. I looked around the bus with the face of a conquerer but no one paid any attention to me so I meekly sat down at the first available seat.

Photo to the above right shows birds eye view of Empress Market. This photo is courtesy of Ali Zasami. Continue reading

Baluchitherium

Owais Mughal

World’s largest mammal that ever walked the face of the earth used to live in Pakistan’s Balochistan province. Yes it is true.

BaluchitheriumThis mammal is called Baluchitherium (The Beast of Balochistan). So far the fossils of this mammal have only been found in Baluchistan and Central Asia.

In 1999, a team of French Palaentologists discovered the complete skeleton of this giant mammal in Dera Bugti Hills of Pakistan. The find came as the result of a 5 month long expedition by the French Team in the Balochistan desert.

All in all it was a 5 year long on-and-off study. The French team was led by Professor Jean-Loup Welcomme of the Natural History Museum in Paris. While the first complete skeleton of Baluchitherium was dicscovered in 1999, it was as early as 1846 when first pieces of fossilized Baluchitherium were accidentally stumbled upon in Dera Bugti by a British Army officer who went by the name of Vickary.
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Merewether Tower, Karachi

Owais Mughal

Today I will take you to a visit to Merewether Tower, Karachi or as locals affectionately call it – the ‘Tower’.

It is one of the most known, but arguably the least acknowledged landmarks of the city. It is most known because it is located at the confluence of two major roads of the city viz. I.I. Chundrigar Road (formerly Mc Leod Rd) and M.A. Jinnah Road (formerly Bandar Rd) therefore most of the city people have seen it. It is also one of the major terminus of city buses. All around the city one can hear bus-conductors shounting tower tower. Therefore even those who have not seen it; they have at least heard about it as echoing sound waves.


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Pakistan Print Ads from 1949

Owais Mughal

Few days ago a good friend of mine forwarded me an email which turned out to be a very nostalgic collection of Pakistani print ads of 1949. I am sharing the ads here. Since then I’ve spent more than 2 hours looking at the details of these ads. For example look the ad to above right; I believe this BP factory also exists today. Karachi phone number given in the advertisement comprises of 4 digits only.

Compare this to 7 digit land line and 10 digit mobile numbers of today. Many of the companies and businesses mentioned in these advertisements still exist. These ads appeared in the Pakistan Year Book of 1949 printed by Kitabistan, Karachi.

Note that in the ad to the left, an old timer is seen drinking cooking oil with spoon – apparently it was very good for health. According to the ad, Co-Co Gold oil also rekindles one’s feelings (ehsasaat) in addition to the obvious health benefits.
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Mysteries of Manghopir

Owais Mughal

The 2009 Sheedi Jaat festival at Manghopir concluded just yesterday (June14-17). I thought it may be an appropriate opportunity to revisit Manghopir. Following post has been updated with new information and new photos at several places for our revisit today.

One of the vivid memories of my childhood is our family picnic visits to the Crocodile pond of Manghopir and then further to Hub Dam. For us children the Crocodile pond at Manghopir was always more fascinating than the calm lake of Hub Dam. Today, Manghopir pond is the largest colony of crocodiles in Pakistan. It is located in Northern part of Karachi. Google Earth map is given below.

Attractions at Manghopir:

Manghopir is famous for three major attractions.

(1) The shrine of Saint Sakhi Sultan which is located on a hill at an altitude of approximately 600 ft.
(2) Adjacent to the shrine is the second attraction in the form of a crocodile pond with a hundred plus docile crocodiles lying lazily there.
(3) A kilometer away from this shrine-crocodile pit complex is the third attraction in the form of hot water sulphur springs
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