Every time I sit down to write the intro for our monthly round-up, the first word to sum everything up is “crazy”. The things are sometimes too bad, other times, slightly less but overall, always not-so-good.

At least that’s what has been the pattern lately, no?

The centre of powers always seem to be at an advantage, leaving a little or no room for hope to seep in. But then there are the bravehearts who snap us back to the truth — the ultimate reality: justice.


After decades of confusion and naivety, April 2024 has once again proved that with courage and resistance, anything can be jolted — if not broken.

And that matters!


by Natasha M. Zai

What a month! From the Islamabad High Court (IHC) judges letter hogging the spotlight in the first few days of the month to Maulana Fazlur Rehman suddenly becoming PTI’s unlikely ally, April had it all. 

Where do we begin? Well, the early part of the month was all about the explosive letter by six IHC judges. The Supreme Court held hearings on the suo moto it took, and the Chief Justice thundered down from the rostrum that the judiciary will not take dictation. All for nothing though, as the end of the month saw a sustained campaign against IHC judge Babar Sattar. 

Meanwhile, PTI turned into a spectacle of infighting. Omar Ayub became the leader of the opposition, while every possible name was thrown about for the position of Chairman of Public Accounts Committee. After alleging that former first lady Bushra Bibi was being poisoned by Harpic (hint hint), PTI decided to start a dialogue with the military establishment. Imran Khan even named Shibli Faraz, Omar Ayub and Ali Amin Gandapur as the three who are allowed to talk to the establishment. While we are talking about Gandapur, he also threatened to take over Islamabad if KP was not given “due rights”. He also gave yet another misogynistic statement, something he just can’t stop doing. 

Moving on to the PML-N, the party acted true to its name and made samdhi jee Ishaq Dar the Deputy Prime Minister. Now the Prime Minister, Deputy Prime Minister, Chief Minister, Party Head, Foreign Minister are part of the Sharif clan. The government now seems more like a Pvt Limited company than a political administration. 

Lastly, the PPP decided to lay low this month, after ensuring that Yousaf Raza Gillani becomes the Senate Chairman. 

On the international front, a report in The Guardian said that India is indeed orchestrating killings in Pakistan, vindicating Pakistan’s stance. The Iranian president visited Pakistan and offered to share tech expertise, prompting the US to sanction companies that provide parts to Pakistan’s missile program. Shehbaz Sharif may actually be close to crafting an investment deal with Saudi Arabia, providing a much needed shot in the arm to Pakistan’s ailing economy.


By Sadaan Khan

The economic landscape of Pakistan in April 2024 presented a mix of highs and lows, underscoring the country’s ongoing challenges and resilience. The month began with adjustments to fuel prices, reflecting the fluctuating international market trends and domestic policy decisions. The federal government hiked the price of petrol by Rs9.66 per litre to Rs289.41, while the price of High-Speed Diesel (HSD) was reduced by Rs3.32 to Rs282.24 per litre, offering some relief to industries reliant on diesel.

In the precious metals market, gold continued its upward trajectory. The price of gold at the beginning of April was around Rs237,100 per tola in Pakistani markets, indicating a significant increase following a surge in international gold prices. This trend continued through the month, with gold prices hitting a record high of Rs251,900 per tola by April 17, driven by global market forces.

The Pakistani rupee (PKR) remained relatively stable against the US dollar, opening the month at Rs277.92 and closing at Rs278.4. This stability came as Pakistan initiated discussions with the International Monetary Fund (IMF) for a new multi-billion-dollar loan agreement to support its economic reform programme. The negotiations are crucial as the country approaches the end of a nine-month, $3 billion loan programme with the IMF, designed to address its balance-of-payments crisis.

Despite consistent foreign aid, Pakistan’s economic performance remains a concern. The Pakistan Institute of Development Economics (PIDE) highlighted that the country has received over $200 billion in foreign aid since its inception, with around $155 billion disbursed. However, the inflows have not substantially improved Pakistan’s economic trajectory, with the PIDE stating, “It would not be misplaced to state that Pakistan is addicted to aid.”

Foreign exchange reserves held by the State Bank of Pakistan (SBP) saw a decline of $73.5 million or 0.91 per cent week-on-week, standing at $7.98 billion by April 19, 2024. The SBP attributed this decrease to debt repayments, adding to the country’s ongoing economic challenges.

The World Bank’s Pakistan development update painted a sobering picture, indicating that the poverty headcount rate, measured at the lower-middle-income country purchasing power parity (PPP), is expected to remain around 40 per cent over FY24–26. 
Real GDP growth is projected to be 1.8 per cent in FY24, with high inflation, weak confidence, and political uncertainty contributing to the slow economic recovery.

Meanwhile, the stock market’s benchmark index, KSE-100, crossed the 70,000 mark on April 9 and closed the month even higher at 71,695, providing a glimmer of hope amidst economic turbulence.

Addressing other key issues, the Power Minister set a deadline of April 23 to combat electricity theft, aiming to eradicate all forms of illegal practices from the country’s power grid. The minister instructed all Discos’ chairmen and CEOs to take immediate action to curb electricity theft.

Finally, the State Bank of Pakistan (SBP) decided to maintain the key policy rate at 22 per cent for the seventh consecutive time, signaling a cautious approach to monetary policy. The Monetary Policy Committee (MPC) noted that macroeconomic stabilsation measures are showing signs of improvement in both inflation and external positions, albeit with moderate economic recovery.

April 2024 was a month of mixed economic signals for Pakistan, with rising gold prices and a steady stock market juxtaposed against challenges in foreign aid, poverty, and foreign exchange reserves. The outcome of ongoing discussions with the IMF will be critical in determining Pakistan’s economic trajectory in the coming months.


by Urwa Khurshid

As I was scrolling the feed to have an idea of the most prominent stories of the month of April, I felt chills down my spine because of an overwhelming number of crime-related stories making waves in the country. Because of this, these 30 days felt more like an eternity. 

Ramzan was trailing off in the beginning yet the three most standout events were Qari Abu Bakar Muawiyah’s, Toba Tek Singh’s Maria murder case and Millat Express Case.

Faisalabad’s Qari Muawiyah reportedly charged for attempting to assault a child came out of jail scot-free on intervention of a senior religious scholar. While there was no investigation, the most problematic part was the fact that the child of the father forgave him for “Allah ki Raza”. This created a lot of stir, yet nothing came out of it. 

Toba Tek Singh’s Maria was choked to death by her brother while their father lying on the bed encouraged him. This murder was filmed by another brother and even though this shocked the whole nation, the blame game that ensued after was paralysing. The one who filmed the murder blamed the complicit brother and father to have raped the victim and vice versa.

Millat Express Case was another testimony of how the morality of our society is going down the drain. A police officer was secretly filmed beating a protesting woman. While it was claimed that she was disturbing the fellow passengers and was mentally sick, it was still not an excuse for the cop to beat her this way. Victim Maryam’s death — either a suicide or the policeman killed her — became even more tangled because of the contradictory statements from family, police and railway department. It puts a question mark over the supposed rule of law in the country. 

The dark episodes of crime does not end here as there are scores of other incidents of people getting killed over as trivial a reason as eating the burger of a girlfriend and as big as man slaughtering his wife and seven children due to poverty. 

Internationally, except from the student protests in America, the conversation was mostly dominated by climate change. Be it the floods in Dubai or the heatwave in Bangladesh, the signs of an impending catastrophe are clearer than ever. It is hitting home with the flood-like situation in Balochistan because of heavy rains but unsurprisingly it remains ignored everywhere.


By Wasim Sarwar

On April 1, Pakistan women cricket team all-rounder Aliya Riaz and Waqar Younis’ younger brother and commentator Ali Younis got engaged.

On April 2, former Indian captain and Indian Premier League (IPL) franchise Chennai Super Kings wicketkeeper Mahendra Singh Dhoni crossed an important milestone in T20 cricket, becoming the first wicketkeeper in the world to take 300 wickets.

On April 8, Chief of Army Staff (COAS) General Asim Munir hosted an iftar party for the Pakistan cricket team in Rawalpindi.

On April 5, South African professional footballer Luke Flores was shot dead during a car robbery incident. 

Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) Director Media and Communications Aliya Rashid resigned from her host on April 5.

On April 8, after more than 1,300 days, the reign of popular wrestler Roman Reigns in WWE came to an end, after he was defeated by Cody Rhodes in the main event of WrestleMania 40.

On April 16, England spin legend Derek Underwood passed away at the age of 78, his county Kent announced.

On April 21, Pakistan defeated India by 2-1 in the karate combat competitions held in Dubai, United Arab Emirates.

On April 25, former captain of Pakistan women’s cricket team Bisma Maroof announced her immediate retirement from cricket on her Instagram account.

The Gamer Galaxy E-Sports Festival became the site of a huge upset when Nauman Chaudhry defeated the uncrowned king of Tekken, Arslan Ash, on April 27.

On April 28, the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) appointed former South African cricketer Gary Kirsten as the head coach of Pakistan’s white ball team and former Australian fast bowler Jason Gillespie as the head coach of the red ball team.


By Kainat Alvi

Get the latest scoop on entertainment news!

This month was packed with exciting events and news. Let’s dive in.

Famous Korean popstar Daud Kim, who became a Muslim five years ago, plans to build a mosque in Incheon.

Pakistani actress Hina Rizvi tied the knot with Ammar Ahmed Khan in a sweet and intimate wedding.

Actor Zaviyar Ijaz’s dance moves didn’t impress everyone, especially his mix of Bhangra and chewing gum!

The upcoming Netflix series ‘Heeramandi’ has everyone talking and eagerly waiting for its release.

Pakistani actress Mahira Khan stole the show at the EMIGala 2024 in Dubai, accepting the ‘Artist in Fashion’ award and attending Arijit Singh’s concert in style.

The pre-wedding celebrations of Anant Ambani and Radhika Merchant in India grabbed attention, but surprisingly, the wedding will now happen in England!

Get ready for a hilarious Eid with the upcoming movie ‘Umro Ayyar’!

Stay tuned for more entertainment news and keep the good times rolling.


May marked 200 days since October 7 attacks, i.e. 200 days of Israeli genocide against the Palestinians in Gaza and the West Bank. As of April 29, at least 34,535 Palestinians have been killed and 77,704 wounded.

The month for the besieged strip started with Israeli forces pulling out from Gaza’s largest hospital, Al Shifa, after an intensive two-week military operation, leaving behind charred buildings and bodies all over the premises. This was followed by an attack on the people working for US-based charity,  World Central Kitchen, in Gaza which included an Australian, three Britons, a North American, a Palestinian and a Pole. Israel conveniently deemed it a ‘mistake’ on their end.

The people of Gaza also marked the “saddest” Eid. Israel, in fact, did not spare that occasion either and killed 14 members of a family in a strike at a home.

The anti-Israeli voices, however, became louder across the world this month.

Within the Middle East, Iran warned Israel of punishing it for an airstrike that killed seven Revolutionary Guards, two of them generals, at its embassy in Damascus. Two weeks later, Iran launched several drones toward Israel, which, of course, were intercepted by the Israeli defence system.

And even though the situation did not blow up, the conflict remains.

Back in the US, student protests at universities gained strength as tensions flared between pro-Palestinian student protesters and school administrators at several US universities, while in-person classes were cancelled and demonstrators arrested.

The protests began at Columbia University with a large group of demonstrators establishing a “Gaza Solidarity Encampment” on school grounds, spread to other campuses, including Yale, MIT and others. The demand to the universities to divest from investing in Israel expanded beyond US borders and the demonstrations took place in Australia, France, and Germany — where too, the police harassed the demonstrators. And as of April 30, Columbia University began suspending student demonstrators after they defied an ultimatum to disperse.

Google also fired 28 employees following a sit-down protest over the tech giant’s contract with the Israeli government, organised by “No Tech for Apartheid”; while five Palestinians living in the Gaza Strip filed a legal complaint in Berlin against the German government over its delivery of weapons to Israel.

Over and above, the world’s biggest election started on April 19 in India, which will continue through the month of May as it is conducted in seven phases in a span of 44 days. The results will be announced on June 4 with Modi likely to win for the third time in a row. This possibility is keeping Muslims and other minorities in the country on their toes as they fear another term of hatred and harassment at the hands of Hindutva followers. Only a couple of days back, unknown persons entered a mosque and allegedly tortured and killed the imam in Ajmer. On the other hand, some Hindu activists already want to “reclaim” the Shahi Idgah in a campaign endorsed by members of the BJP.

So, which direction is India really headed towards? And how long will it take for the world to put an end to a genocide?