Showing posts tagged karachi

Sharing the same plate, notice the missing hand?

feels real when it’s so close doesn’t it?

isn’t that lovely then

feels real when it’s so close doesn’t it?


isn’t that lovely then

(Reblogged from lameshizz)

smoggy fruits anyone? extra salty.

bunch of shots from sadar. not sure how much i like this set though.

a local snake charmer gets his snake ready to perform. 

not just any chips, VIP SUPER finger chips.

do not divide. conquer.

A man once told me about a folklore from his village, something he said he believed in as a kid. They used to say, every time a man is unjustly killed, the village is overtaken with a mist that doesn’t go away until mid-afternoon the next day. 

I asked him what his village must be like now, and he said “Shehzad saab, woh tau doob gaya hoga us mein, raat main bili bhee ghabra jayegi” -  [translation: the mist must be so thick now, that at night, even cats will be afraid to walk the roads]

His name is Abdullah, though I referred to him as chacha ji endearingly. He is a kind man, with small aspirations and a big heart. We spent quite a bit of time together in Pakistan, and he had some profound views of the world. 

Jokingly, he once told me that he fears for his kid sometimes, “woh itna Allah wala hogaya hay, apnay aap kau bum blast say na uraday” - [He’s become so religious, I hope he doesn’t blow him self up]. 

But it’s not a joke.

Karachi is burning in the midst of a potent mix of extremist fantasies, violent power struggles and an ideologically confused, shrinking middle class. As the differences that divide us become sharper, as our identities become more distinct, so will our sense of belonging to the same land. Our willingness to persevere as a nation, and our drive to succeed will cease.

On our way to the airport, I asked him why Pakistan was in such dire conditions, and he said everyone is fighting for the same thing, they just don’t know they are.

"Roz panch waqt ka chai aur namaz miljayay, aur humain kya chaheeyay? Yeh sara Pakistan kau yehee chaheeyay. Main pathan hoon, tum muhajir hau, woh musalman aur yeh hindu hai, saab kau ek cheez chaheeyay" - [Tea and the ability to pray, what more do I want? What more does all of Pakistan want? I might be Pashtun, and you might be Muhajir (emigrants from pre-partition India), he might be muslim and that guy could be hindu, but we all want the same thing.]

He could not have said it any better. I left that night, and while I flew over Pakistan, I could not help but hope that we learn to put aside our differences amongst each other and work together. We have forgotten what it means to be a nation, it’s a good time to start remembering.

- Shehzad Akbar


I woke up this morning, and did not hear crows arguing for scraps of food.

I brushed my teeth, and the water didn’t taste like sand.

I went out for a run, and it did not smell like someone was burning garbage.

I had breakfast, and it wasn’t dripping with grease.

I went grocery shopping, and did not have to repeatedly scream out a list at someone.

I went out for a drive, and did not have to compete in monster truck rally: Karachi.

I had to fix my dishwasher, and she wasn’t going through family problems.

I watched tv, and did not have to watch grown men scream at each other.

At 9 pm, i didn’t have to sit in the dark.

I went to sleep, and i missed Karachi.

Shehzad Akbar

Abdullah Shah Ghazi Bombing

At least eight people were killed when two suicide bombers exploded at a major shrine “Abdullah Shah Ghazi” in the port city of Karachi late Thursday”

“We are collecting details and we fear the casualties may rise,”

For those of you who enjoyed my short series from my trip Pakistan, most (if not all) of those images had been taken at the exact same location where the suicide bombing occurred. The site of Abdullah Shah Ghazi’s Shrine is a very sacred location for many Sindhi’s in Pakistan, his shrine dates back almost 1400 years ago and is a gathering place for thousands and thousands of worshippers every year.

Every picture I took had a story behind it, every man i spoke to had an aura about him, every character i painted had his own color. Every family that i saw had a purpose behind them.

These were innocent people, these were people who had walked weeks to come and visit the shrine, these were people who had decided to set up shop and sell balloons to visiting foreigners, these were people who had set up make-shift tents in the parking lot while they spent their time paying respects to a saint they revered highly.

The boy (in green) was probably around 15-16 years of age, and he walked around with us when we were exploring the area, making sure the person i wanted to capture was working hard for me by screaming at them or yelling at them to sit straight (or not to sit straight). There were many like him, and many not like him. Yet, they all had a similar vibe to them. Regardless of the abysmal situation they were living in, they were all smiling, joking and laughing amongst each other.

I sincerely hope that laughter has not been silenced.

He sat there rolling a joint, which he subsequently lit with the fire form the burning garbage next to him.

love the shirt.

"angrayzon kay zamanay ka jailer". He guesstimated his own age as somewhere between 135 - 141.

laugh. play. dream. live.