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Ms JANUARY 5, 2014


Dress code: Smart casuals



The Disability Dilemma



inside fashion smashion —

Hair for a princess

domestic goddess —

Go cracker crazy



Section In-Charge: Batool Zehra Sub-Editor: Amna Hashmi

The jewel in the crown

2 Ms

the buzz


Down with a Disability? Ms T speaks to families raising children with special needs to highlight the biggest problem they face: other people by Iram Moazzam



Imran Ahmad, father of young Javeria suffering from Down’s syndrome had become used to his daughter being gawped at but he could never reconcile with it. “Even if people didn’t really say anything, I could see it in their eyes,” he says, remembering all the times he would take little Javeria for an outing. “Kids would often laugh at her disability and as if that wasn’t heartbreaking enough, even grown-ups would steal awkward glances at her. It felt terrible and so rude!” Waqar Ahsan has a similar story to tell which implies a rather condescending attitude towards the disabled. “The very choice of words used to describe a physically challenged person show the lack of empathy in our society,” he says of the experiences with his mentally handicapped brother Aamir. “Instead of saying ‘andha’ or ‘blind,’ why can’t people use the term ‘naabina’ or ‘visually impaired?’ Why call a disabled person a ‘bechaara?’ Rather than sympathising and rubbing a person’s disability in their face, I always choose to empathise.” The examples of Javeria and Aamir are testament to what one has to bear whilst raising a child with special needs: other people tend not to be very kind. And what’s more, their negative approach is only exacerbated considering how much parents of disabled children already have on their plate. “Being a mother to a mentally handicapped child is extremely difficult,” says Gul e Rana, mother of 30-year-old Raheel Mubashir who still needs her assistance in everyday activities like using the toilet, changing clothes and eating, etc. “Sending Raheel to school is a daily challenge as he doesn’t understand its importance. He also needs constant monitoring and a wide array of activities to keep him involved due to his short attention span. His ‘episodes’ have scared away many maid and guests but I have to handle him with love. He is my son after all!” It is a pity that despite over 15 per cent of the world’s population (almost 1 billion people) suffering from some disability or the other, most people fear or ridicule the former for their limitations. According to the Helping Hand for Relief and Developement (HHRD) a total of 5.035 million Pakistanis are currently living with a disability, a number greater than the population of Multan, Hyderabad and Peshawar combined! Yet, we fail to accept the disabled as a part of our society, let alone offer them support and the necessary amenities. This chunk of our population is discriminated against in almost every aspect of life which only serves to impede their growth and development even more. The prejudices faced by disabled people are most evident in the job market wherein about 80 per cent of them fail to secure half-decent jobs [UN Statistics], despite better retention rates and a higher probability to succeed compared to their non-disabled counterparts. Although the ‘Disabled Persons Employment and Rehabilitation Ordinance’ was instated in

1981 to provide support to the disabled and help them find employment across different fields of work, Talal Waheed, a visually-impaired Project Manager at Helpage International shares a different story altogether. “The quota for 2 per cent disability employment levied by the government is not being implemented fairly,” he says, angrily. “It seems that Pakistanis lack commitment and don’t care for such a marginalised part of their society. The right for suitable employment should be given to all citizens, disabled or not but when it comes to us disabled people, we only get our right as charity, i.e. if we get them at all. Why is that so?” The discrimination in the job markets hardly constitutes as breaking news when one takes the dire situation of literacy in Pakistan under consideration. According to United Nations Education, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO), 90 per cent of disabled children living in developing nations are not

way to live and not realise that the disabled are as human as themselves. Nonetheless, passing jarring comments or denying them their rights can never be justified The unfortunate truth is that there are many deeply embedded attitudes in our culture regarding people with disabilities and usually, the more severe the disability, the larger the attitudinal obstruct one will encounter. Beliefs about disability are planted early on, such as when one pulls their child out of the path of a wheelchair, perhaps to simply prevent a collision but the child gets the message to stay away from a wheelchair in the future. “I have noticed many parents avoid explaining disabilities to their children,” says 28 — year-old Maleeha Naeem. “I think if a child is above a certain age, then the parents should tell them ‘what is wrong with that man on the signal who can’t stand up.’ It will encourage empathy and understanding towards the handicapped.”

It is a pity that despite over 15 per cent of the world’s population (almost 1 billion people) suffering from some disability or the other, most people fear or ridicule the former for their limitations sent to school owing to the lack of necessary special amenities they need. “My family is very supportive towards Salman’s needs and give him utmost importance in everything,” says Tehreem, sister to bright and friendly 19-year-old Salman who suffers from Cerebral Palsy. “But when it comes to schools, we hardly have much choice. Most of them don’t teach anything; they exist to make money and pass the time. So, we are unsure of sending Salman to school.” Speech therapist Faseeha Shafqat attributes these factors to the government saying that, “Our public sector has a severe shortage of trained faculty who can cater to a special child’s needs, nor do they seem to care too much. The government’s careless attitude and lack of financial support truly hinder the progress of our disabled community.” Perhaps one cannot blame the general public for their awkward reactions when in the company of the handicapped. Seeing as how most people have little or no experience when it comes to them and they are often left wondering if there is a special way to behave around the handicapped or if they should offer the handicapped person help or not lest they become angry. People may imagine having a disability as a horrible

What we need to realise is that while having a disability may hold one back in some aspects of life, the patient’s abilities in other areas may supersede it . Shazma Khursheed’s victories at the 2013 Special Olympics held in Australia last December lends credence to the fact that with conviction and focus, everyone can overcome their problems. Despite her speech and hearing impairment, the bright youngster brought back a gold and silver medal in table tennis to Pakistan and yet, her laurels have gone unnoticed. “Some media did acknowledge my daughter’s achievements and those of the other winners but we were quite disappointed that the Government showed no appreciation at all,” says Shazma’s mother. “Do the special achievers not deserve any celebration too?” It is high time our society moves away from the narrow definitions of physical beauty. We must recognize the handicapped as part of our society who deserve to be given their due chance for making a contribution and so, it is crucial that we educate our people and change the general perceptions they have of those who are different from them. Remember: we are all citizens of the world and it is up to us to make it a better place for one another.

What you can do to help: • If a disabled person seems to be struggling, ask how you can be of assistance politely. • Never make assumptions about anyone based on their apparent disability — they too have a range of capabilities that you may not be aware of. • Never make it obvious that you have noticed a person’s disability — they have a heart too! • Help your child develop an understanding of the handicapped. If there is a student with a disability in your child’s class, invite him or her over for a play date or include them in the birthday party list. Not only will this encourage tolerance and empathy in your child, it will also give the special child an opportunity to mingle with his peers and socialise as any other child would. • Last but not the least, do not stare at anyone. It makes the disabled person conscious and can harm their self-esteem.

4 Ms

en vogue


Casual Comfort

Coordination: Umer Mushtaq Designer: Ishtiaq Afzal Khan Hair, Makeup & Grooming: Sab’s Salon Photography & Styling: Abid Saleem Model: Mahroosh Rana and Abraar Khan


5 Ishtiaq Afzal displays winter casuals, perfect for chilly afternoons spent in the winter sun



fashion smashion


affair W

e Pakistanis are the ‘Go big or go home’ kind, never doing anything halfway — especially when it comes to weddings. Whether it is our clothes, the mehendi dances or the decor at our functions, we truly like to go all out. The latest trend all women are obsessing over this wedding season is hair accessories. After all, if your outfit it fit for a princess, why not wear an intricate headpiece as well? Thanks to a popular Turkish drama featuring beautiful princesses from the Ottoman Empire sporting headpieces and jewels in their hair, our local ladies are looking like princesses themselves with matha pattis, beads and tiny jhoomars in their hair. The trend is a great mix of old and contemporary styles and can add a royal touch to even the dullest of outfits. But hair ornaments are not for everyone! Check out my tips for rocking this new style — they are fit for a princess!

1) Whatever you decide to wear, always make sure that the ornaments are in accordance with the size of your forehead, especially when it comes to matha pattis and tikas. Choose a piece that will compliment your face structure so that the accessories do not overpower your entire look. Remember, you have to wear the accessory, the accessory should not be wearing you. 2) The placement of the hair ornaments is crucial, as is securing it in that position. No one wants a jhoomar swinging across your eyes while you dance! Black bobby pins will your best friend — use them generously to hold your hair ornaments in place. 3) The decision to whether let your hair down or keep it tied should depend on how intricate your headpiece is. If it had a lot of dangling beads or jewels, it is advisable to tie your hair up to prevent it from getting tangled into the headpiece. The best part about this hair trend is that those who cover their heads can adopt it as well! Another way to add a new twist to the conventional hair styling it by placing the matha patti on one side of the head to make it serve as both a patti and a jhoomar. The trend was rife at recent fashion events in Pakistan and looks both elegant and edgy at the same time. But if you feel that tikas or matha pattis aren’t really your thing, do not worry! There is huge variety of things we can use as hair ornaments. Girls across Pakistan have been fixing chunky necklaces, dangly earrings and even artificial flowers into their manes to liven up their look, from head to toe. Matha Pattis are usually worn by brides in Pakistan or by those attending weddings but you can actually incorporate this chic trend into your daily outfits as well. Of course you won’t be rocking the same heavily adorned gold and silver matha pattis when heading out for coffee with friends. But to rock head pieces on an everyday basis, start looking at your jewelry collection instead of going directly to the market to buy new ones. Every girl has a few charm necklaces or some real sparkly diamanté — encrusted ones. These are perfect for wearing as head pieces. Simply place the necklace on your forehead, secure with bobby pins on both sides, poof up your hair and voila, instant glam! If you’re a bit more daring then you could even use stretchable bow head bands that are all the rage due to Gossip Girl a few years ago, as head pieces. Adjust the bow towards the side instead of the middle and you’ll be good to go. Just make sure your head band is stretchable enough that it doesn’t pinch your forehead unnecessarily.

by Nayab Najam

domestic goddess 7



Mushroom Crackers Swarmed with in-house guests this wedding season and don’t know what to feed them? I have the perfect solution for you! Try my recipe for homemade mushroom crackers, a quick and easy snack that will satisfy late afternoon cravings and keep your guests wanting more. They are light, easy and delicious any time, any day. Arooj Waqar runs a Facebook cooking page called Mona’s Kitchen and aspires to convert her passion for cooking into a career

Method • In a frying pan, heat the oil and sauté some garlic in it. • Add mushrooms and allow them to fry for 3 to 4 minutes. • Sprinkle some black pepper and salt over the mushrooms and stir. Turn off the flame. • If you are using dried black mushroom, remember that you must wash them first and boil for 5 minutes before chopping them up for cooking. • Place the fried mushrooms in the centre of the crackers, drop some mayonnaise on it and serve instantly before the crackers get too soggy. Your dish is now ready.


Fried fish crackers Black mushrooms Garlic paste ½ tsp (chopped) ½ cup (small)

Salt (to taste)

Black pepper (to taste)

Mayonnaise (to taste)

Oil 2 tbsp

hottie of the week 8


Status Born

Single Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates


24th July, 1981



Taimoor Choudhry



Who is he? If you loved Tom Cruise as the irresistibly charming fighter-pilot Maverick in Top Gun, you are in for a treat today. Taimoor Choudhry may not be a daring military pilot but he is equally as gorgeous and passionate about flying as Maverick was. Although his father didn’t allow him to join the Pakistani Air force, Taimoor took private flying lessons and is now a trained and licensed pilot. There is something oh-so-appealing about a man who knows his passions and follows them, wow. And that’s not even the best part! Taimoor is also the general manager and creative director of the renowned jewelry brand Damas in Paksitan! He attributes both his passion for flying and love for designing to the adrenaline rush he gets out of both. He enjoys anything that gets his heart pumping and blood rushing, be it flying a plane 35,000 feet in the air or displaying his latest jewelry collection on the ramps. On top of it all, this dapper young gentleman holds an Economics degree from McGill University and is seeking an equally ambitious and intelligent ladylove to fly around with. So ladies, call dibs!



Why we love him With Taimoor’s intense good looks, artistic prowess and the ability to fly us around the world, what more could anyone want? Taimoor is every bit the eloquent, intellectual and well-mannered man you would expect a jewelry connoisseur to be. He claims to suffer from severe stage fright and, much to our dismay, doesn’t like appearing on TV shows too much as he gets nervous. He is an environmentalist at heart and he draws inspiration from nature, including trees, flowers and animals. He is also an animal rights enthusiast and he once based an entire line of jewelry (Genero Jungle by Damas) on them. His plans for the future include bringing about some change in the law to protect our environment and animals against further degradation. Taimoor is also a patriot and hates the negative portrayal of Pakistan in the international media. He prefers Pakistani cuisine over all others and to travel within the country. His idea of the perfect adventure is flying to Skardu and then hiking up K2 someday.

What you didn’t know about him Taimoor’s most prized possession is his dog Foofy who has been with him for almost eight years now! His favourite spots to hangout in are Cuckoo’s Café and Andaaz Restaurant in Lahore so ladies, if you want to casually drop by, you better do it fast!

Total Package


The Express Tribune hi five - January 5  

The Express Tribune hi five for January 05th 2014

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