Saturday, November 19, 2005

Mobilink's Online Subscriber Counter

Mobilink is causing its competitors sleepless nights by putting up interesting online counter on a huge bill-board on the (ex-Shcon Circle) Underpass. The counter shows a whooping 9,XXX,XXX figure that moves with time and is meant to show new SIM being activated on the mobilink network. It sure will give Warid & Telenor a lot of blood pressure while Paktel and Instaphone can die out of their inability to even cross the million mark.

Hajj Fever Gripping Karachi

Hajj is approaching and a lot of activities related to Hajj can be spotted. Alamgir Trust is the center spot for the general public for their Hajj related shopping (Ehram, Chappals, Prayer Matts etc) as well as the Hajj training programs that are one of the best in their domain.

The Hajj Flight Schedule has been finalized.

Ban on Marriage Dinners!

Last night I attended a marriage ceremony - which is what everyone is doing since Eid (4th Nov 2005) because it is considered the best time to get married in contemporary culture. Ever since the Higher Courts of Pakistan woke up from their respective sleeps and re-enforced the ban on lavish marriage dinners, the administration has been pretty strict in getting the orders implemented. The bride family of a typical middle class will secretly thanks the situation where they can gracefully avoid the expense of marriage dinners.

However, what just dawned on my last night was the fact that despite the fact that dinner was not served, the reception family included five to six non dinner items (and of course not to mention the paans) in the refreshments. The family could bearly afford the cost of the event and even though they were offered this chance of saving something on this excessive expenditure, they didn't opt for it and made sure they include all possible dishes (call them items!) that they could afford.

And all this made me think if the intent of the ban was really met or not.

How about real casual marriage ceremonies where we actually sip some good hot tea and chew a few dry-friuts and can be true to our concious that we attended a simple marriage ceremony?

PTCL's Putting More Optical Fiber in Karachi Neighbourhoods

PTCL is putting a lot of new optical fiber cable in the oustide plant (for non-techies, the term optical fiber refers to the copper and fiber cables that a telco lays on the streets and the roads - beyond its office building - to reach to its customers locations. This time, more interestingly, they have arranged pre-casted manhole chambers of concrete that they will just dig-and-bury at the junction level.

For those close to the business, this means a lot of new capacity for PTCL in terms of both quantity (more lines) and quality (broadband serviecs) to the end users in...err..2010 may be!

Thursday, November 17, 2005

Another Bus Accident

Two racing 4L (large) busses at Teen Hatti caused another accident. The driver of the chasing bus drove his vehicles right wheels on the footpath to find his way ahead in the rush and when he tried to get back to the road he could no longer balance the large mass of the bus and the body tripped on the road.

The scream-producing scene was of a motorcyclist who was miraclously saved. He was just on the left side of the bus moving in the same direction and he actually saw the bus started to fall on its left. As he quickly got off his moving bike, the body of the bus fell on the bike and the man remained mostly safe.

People were trying to pop out of the fallen bus most of them with visible bruises and blood stained arms and faces due to the broken glasses and overall unfortunate incidents.

Tuesday, November 15, 2005

PIA Planetarium - Revival?

Seems like there is some revival of the PIA Planetarium activities going on. Located in Gulshan near the Expo Center, the place and facility has attracted lots of bad press and seems like it would soon be a victim of cost cutting and will eventually be closed down. but initially it had all the ingredients to spark intense interest in Science and Technology in the younger generation while providing some healthy fun to the elder visitors but the facility never took off. The idea was great and so has been my experience with the Planetarium (when I was too young to write all this but can still remember the details).

How about asking PIA to relinquish the administrative charge of the facility (we do thank them for all the investment and the work done till now) but let us give this out to a more agile (private?) body who could attract due crowd to the fantastic place, increase the activities that take place (something beyond the repetitive shows). We had the Mars pass the earth so closely in the past week and it was an excellent time to promote the planetarium and arrange some live Mars Observation via some good quality telescope (may be for a small fee). All this and more could be done if we have a more dynamic body taking care of this precious citizen resource of Karachi.

Monday, November 14, 2005

Unsafe Roads - When will this change?

A sad news item from today's Dawn:
KARACHI: 4 friends killed as dumper hits car -DAWN - Local; November 14, 2005: "KARACHI, Nov 13: Four friends died when a speeding dumper hit a car carrying six persons on M. T. Khan Road Sunday night. The two other occupants of the car were injured.

Police said that all the victims were youngsters."
We discussed this at Karachi Metblog a few days ago as well. My comments to the question 'When will this (situation) change were:
Tragic. Very tragic.

Our roads wont be safe, until:

1. Government, High Court and other flag-carrying vehicles come down from the 1st slot on the list of traffic light breakers.

2. Our so-called up-scale population stops taking pride and stops extracting fun by violating the traffic lights in their shining new cars. In certain cases, its is mind-boggling to know that the violater is a just-back-from-the-US-of-A sort of creature.

3. We get rid of the transport mafia (of which the illiterate drivers are only a small part) that necessitate irresponsible driving of heavy vehicles with the death-mongering 'token systems'.

Till then, the merciless cobras that our roads are would have plenty of death-inflicting appitite.

Posted by: Tee Emm at November 6, 2005 12:30 AM