14 May, 2021

Pakistan Diary

Friend Jyoti Malhotra scored a pack of cigarettes in the coffee shop at the departure lounge, but they had no matches or lighters.

Pakistan Diary


“How many times have you been robbed?” It is cruel and intrusive but I cannot help but ask this question of every Karachi resident I meet. Almost everyone I have spoken to has been unburdened of their mobile phone by someone carrying a gun in this Mumbai-sized city whose problem is as much crime as it is extremism. Of the dozens that I have asked this question of, I have yet to meet someone who hasn’t been.

An army officer friend said he had been robbed twice, the second time by a man who came into the car and put a gun into his ribs. The fellow also demanded the car’s keys, but left after the officer told him to calm down and assured him that he wouldn’t follow him. Hearing the bit about the keys, I had assumed that it was because the gunman wanted the car, but apparently it’s only the mobile phones,...

In this article:

More from Aakar Patel

Latest Magazine

May 17, 2021

other articles from the issue

articles from the previous issue

Other magazine section