There is very little memory left of a Pakistan that today almost seems like an alien planet compared to what it has been ever since the mid-1980s.
Here, I shall once again share with you some interesting photographs that I have managed to gather in the last couple of years of that alien country.
A place that was also called Pakistan.
Astronaut of NASA's Apollo 17 and his wife wave to fans on their arrival at Lahore Airport (1973).
A scene from Hollywood blockbuster ‘Bhowani Junction’ being shot outside a Lahore police station.
A couple swings into action at a New Year’s party at a nightclub at Karachi’s Hotel Metropole (1957).
A newspaper clipping (from Pakistan’s daily, ‘Morning News’) with a report on how Pakistani pop fans gate-crashed their way into a bar at the Karachi Airport where the famous pop band The Beatles were having a drink. They had arrived in Karachi (1963) to get a connecting flight to Hong Kong. Between the 1960s and late 1970s the Karachi Airport was one of the busiest in the region. (Picture Courtesy: Sami Shah).
Western tourists sunbathing on a Karachi beach (early 1960s).
A group of American tourists on a ‘crabbing trip’ in Karachi. ‘Crabbing’ (catching crabs) was a thriving tourist activity in Karachi where tourists would rent boats from the coastal Kimari area of the city and ‘go crabbing.’ The boats mostly belonged to men belonging to the ‘Afro-Pakistani’ community in Karachi and some of them had small barbecue kitchens and bars fitted in the boats. The boats are still there, but not the tourists.
The Queen of England (Elizabeth II) meeting a welcoming committee during her visit to Karachi in 1961. She also toured many parts of the city with the then ruler of Pakistan, Field Martial Ayub Khan in an open-top limousine.
Students sympathetic to the Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP) and the left-wing National Students Federation (NSF) clash with the police and pro-government students in Karachi (1969). The student and labour movement between 1967 and 1968 had already toppled the dictatorship of Ayub Khan.
Plainclothes cops nab a radical Pushtun nationalist student who was accused of firing shots from a concealed gun at Ayub Khan at a pro-Ayub rally in Peshawar (late 1968).
A press ad in a Pakistani magazine announcing the launch of Canadian Club Whiskey in Pakistan (early 1960s). The whiskey was first made available at Karachi’s horse racing and polo club (Race Course) and then introduced in the city’s many bars.