First Impressions of Islamabad

As reported on the BBC website. I *kind of* agree with the observations, though mine havent been as critical yet.

Some exerpts from the article follow

‘The BBC Urdu Service’s Masud Alam has returned to live in Pakistan after 15 years abroad. In his first missive for News Online from Islamabad, he finds everyday life there has become a little surreal.”

“Islamabad is, I’m told, unlike any other Pakistani city. Based on my first impressions I tend to believe Islamabad is unlike any city anywhere in the world. I’m not even sure if 900 sq km of woodland, cleared in part to house less than a million people, can technically be termed a city at all? If it can be, it’s possibly the only capital city that has no cinema, theatre, or public library.”

Give the rest a read here.

3 Comments so far

  1. 1967 (unregistered) on January 3rd, 2007 @ 10:30 pm

    Great review Mansoor. The lesson I have finally learnt now is a) It’s a great way to get through your time here by intreacting least with the people and living a very isolated life, unless you find a group of like minded people b) Play the tune every one is playing as long as you have to for as long as you are here.

    In my opinion, it’s never been a problem with me regarding the place, it’s the people that are the core of most of the issues. Atleast you can do away with that in Islamabad.

    Masud Alam would have second thoughts on his views in the article when he actually starts interacting with people. I think he wrote too soon….poor him…:-)


  2. Purple_Haze (unregistered) on January 6th, 2007 @ 8:45 am

    Alam Masud has proved to be a man without any sense of ethics, globalization and respect for once own country. No one needs him here. He can go back to his “little” old english town. Islamabad is one of the most well planned cities in Asia and the unnecessary criticism & the “negative publicity” that he did about Pakistan in front of the entire world ANY city can be criticized equally or in much worse manner including London and New York.

    Listen people, we have what we have, we are who we are, and we are working VERY hard day and night to make our nation better and we are winning with one small step at a time.

    I was really looking up to Mr. Masud and was excited about his move and followed his story from the start but he really disappointed me. Even if he didnt liked some things why did he had to magnify them in front of the world? like we have a crises of criticism…

    I live in New York for last 10 years and am moving to Islamabad soon, I promise my nation that I’ll equal the score by writing my own article, but I am not sure if BBC will publish it as I have noticed a trend that they only publish bad news about PK sometimes sugar coating it so average people who dont understand marketing & media tactics dont even notice it, anyways, I hope that god will guide Mr. Masud and he will take some journalism, marketing & ethics classes in Islamabad.


  3. Ajnabi Musafir (unregistered) on January 7th, 2007 @ 8:35 pm

    Masud Alam before writing about any city I would recommend you to step out of your room and look around. I am surprised you did not find any library , theatre when I have experienced these things even two decades ago. If you don’t know the city , it does not mean city does not have it and I have spent as much time outside Pakistan as you have and in different continents. Shortcut to fame: Malign your own origin:).



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