S. Akbar Zaidi

The military’s waning power

THE victors who climbed the heights of Kargil and who gave Pakistan visions as divergent as those based on...

Military’s continued interference

UNTIL around sometime in 2007, the question ‘which is the strongest institution in Pakistan?’ was always met...

Is the Taj Mahal Pakistani?

OF COURSE, this is an absurd question. How on earth could the Taj Mahal ‘be Pakistani’ and claim a nationality...

Rethink privatisation

There is an urgent need for the government to rethink its steam-rolling project of privatisation.

Karachi as a province

THERE is little disagreement on the suggestion that Pakistan needs many more provinces than the existing four (five,...

Civil society’s failures

ECONOMISTS know about what they call ‘market failure’ as well as ‘government failure’ in a situation where...

The urban present

SOON after the 1998 census results were made public, Reza Ali, an urban planner and researcher from Lahore, wrote a...

More than one ‘conservatism’

AN argument doing the rounds suggests that a ‘right-wing wave’ has swept Pakistan’s recent general elections....

Suitcase economists

IN a rare moment of bold, honest, reflection, on Dec 24, members of the National Assembly’s Standing Committee on Finance, which included at least one prominent PPP member, demanded the resignation of

Reasons or excuses?

AT the recently concluded 28th annual general meeting and conference of the Pakistan Society of Development Economists, organised by what is now the Pakistan Institute of Development Economics (PIDE)

Lahore’s domination

KARACHI is the most developed economic and social administrative entity (district/ division) in Pakistan. In almost every single category of economic and social indicators, it tops the list of Pakistan’s districts. Although

Singh should visit

VISAS, peace accords, even trade treaties between India and Pakistan pale into insignificance without the icing on the cake, a visit by Dr Manmohan Singh, Prime Minister of India, to meet the President of Pakistan,

Economic myths & our elite

THE more one talks to Pakistan’s educated elite, the more one realises just how uneducated it is about many things, especially Pakistan’s economy. This is partly not their fault, for many economists are equally

The power of land

SOME economists have shown empirically, that land reforms in rural areas, may not lead to economic growth, and hence have argued that such reforms are not worth pursuing.

The strongest institution?

THERE has never been any doubt, that for more than 50 years, from the mid-1950s to almost exactly the end of 2007, the single-most powerful and dominating institution in Pakistan’s body politic has been the

But what if it wins?

EVERY government is a political government, even a military dictatorship, a fact which most analysts and commentators forget.

The worst ever?

BEFORE the budget of the next financial year is announced within the next few weeks, the Ministry of Finance is, as every year, expected to reveal its Economic Survey for the on-going fiscal year 2011-12.

Taxing elites

ELITES are taxing in any context and in any environment. In Pakistan, however, their behaviour makes matters doubly worse.

The new intellectuals

IT seems impossible to imagine a society, even such as ours, without intellectuals. They have existed from time immemorial, in every society, at different layers of the social strata interacting with, and frequently changing, the course of history, and of

The biggest failure

UNDOUBTEDLY, the biggest success of the present government as it celebrates four years in power is precisely that: it is actually in a position to celebrate having completed four years in power.