Blogs

A journey to Waaweila – Final 150 150 ComfortAid International

A journey to Waaweila – Final

Joyful marriages; grinding poverty; going home. The drive up to Belkaab begins benignly enough; except for the heat and dust, there is not much happening. We pass Sar Pol and pay respects at the grave of Yahya bin Zain, grandson of Imam Sajjad (A); history tells us he was beheaded after a fierce fight here…

A journey to Waaweilah – Part three 150 150 ComfortAid International

A journey to Waaweilah – Part three

Shafeeqa’s tears of blood. The greeting party at Imam Sajjad (A) Clinic troop out to meet us; Aagha Amini, the local community religious leader, Dr. Islam Yaar, nurse Mohammed Amin, pharmacist Mohammed Rafiq cleaner Zaman plus Basheer and a businessman, Hussein Pur, who has volunteered to accompany and help Basheer as I have missed my…

A journey to Waaweilah – Part two 320 240 ComfortAid International

A journey to Waaweilah – Part two

Bladder control, an agony. Stalled car. Weeping windscreen. Road to Bamiyaan Rain, rain Mud, mud For a change, there is a line with only about 10 people in front of me waiting for their turn at the immigration counter at Kabul airport. My turn, I step up and hand my passport open to the page…

A journey to Waaweilah – Part one 150 150 ComfortAid International

A journey to Waaweilah – Part one

Part 1 – Indian Airlines, outstanding incompetence. When I land in New Delhi from Mumbai, it is as if the pilot must have made a mistake and landed at Kuwait or Dubai airport instead. But no, this is Delhi all right, no artificial glitter or shiny marble floors where you can almost see your jetlagged…

My tears of blood – Shafiqa Ahmed Hussein 320 180 ComfortAid International

My tears of blood – Shafiqa Ahmed Hussein

Sacheck village. Shafiqa’s destroyed home. Shafiqa’s destroyed home. Shafiqa Shafiqa This is the story of Shafiqa Ahmed Hussein who I meet in the village of Sacheck, Afghanistan at Imam Sajjad (A) Clinic on May 27, 2010. A demure, pretty woman of 22, Shafiqa tells me the following heart wrenching story of her Dad’s massacre by…

The New Ahlebeyti Muslims – A revealing experience. 150 150 ComfortAid International

The New Ahlebeyti Muslims – A revealing experience.

INDONESIA: The burly Iraqi Faris el Husseini in traditional Arab gown stands out amongst mostly Indonesian crowd at Jakarta International Airport and after introductions, upon knowing I am an East African Khoja, Husseini instantly starts conversing in very acceptable Kiswahili, startling me. Husseini, you see, spent 3 years in Arusha, Tanzania so is quite good…

The day Emirates ruined Helena’s mascara. 150 150 ComfortAid International

The day Emirates ruined Helena’s mascara.

Emirates flight 725 from Dubai to Dar es Salaam begins with hassles; the aircraft is parked quite a distance away from the main terminal and we have to ride a bus to reach it. Funny no, you never have to do this when traveling to say, Europe or the Americas or somewhere exotic; just one…

Help most vague! 320 240 ComfortAid International

Help most vague!

Bewaqoof! Says an elder, Bewaqoof ladki! He repeats. Idiot, idiot girl! This admonishment is directed towards Begum Mumtaz, a dirt poor almost blind orphan girl living with her mother in the village of Nagaram in AP, India. The anger and irritation is because Mumtaz refuses to visit an eye specialist to check if a medical…

An orgy of blood /A dance for justice – Final 320 240 ComfortAid International

An orgy of blood /A dance for justice – Final

I ask the driver to take me to Naroda Patiya, Naroda Gaun and Gulbaag Colony. The former two are minority Muslim pockets and scars from those couple of days of mayhem are still evident, even after eight years. Drab, dusty and filthy at places, the State has neglected to develop these narrow wandering streets into…

An orgy of blood /A dance for justice – Part two: 150 150 ComfortAid International

An orgy of blood /A dance for justice – Part two:

Firoz Gulzar Mohammed Pathan (FGMP): The train from Surat to Ahmedabad next morning is another comfortable ride, on time departure and arrival. Chotubhai Dosani, my host, picks me up and we lunch in style at his home and I have the afternoon free to relax and catch up with piling emails that were almost inaccessible…

An orgy of blood /A dance for justice – Part one: 150 150 ComfortAid International

An orgy of blood /A dance for justice – Part one:

Gujarat on February 27, 2002: a train carrying a group of radical Hindu devotees is set on fire at Godhra, Gujarat resulting in the deaths of 59 people, supposedly by a Muslim mob. Subsequent findings question this version, as it is proved fire could not have possibly set from outside the train, rather, scientific and…

Haw, all is vell… 150 150 ComfortAid International

Haw, all is vell…

Haw, haw, please come; you will be okay, I have curfew passes for us. So says my friend, Shabbir Lalani, an active social worker based in Hyderabad. He is assuring me of my safety in the violence engulfed city; bloodshed between Hindus and Muslims that has flared up in the Old City, resulting in total…

Prophecies of a dying brother. 150 150 ComfortAid International

Prophecies of a dying brother.

Two days before Bha stopped talking and went into a coma, he called me to his room and sat me down by his bedside. Bha, Mohammedreza Sultanali Yusufali, my eldest brother, was a father figure in my family. My father, you see, passed away in 1960, and since then Bha had led at the top,…

Lost lives…insecure lives. 150 150 ComfortAid International

Lost lives…insecure lives.

Kabul, Afghanistan – Friday February 26,2010 Six heavily armed men casually walk towards the entrance of Park Residence Hotel and as casually, pump several bullets into the heavy set middle aged guard sleepily guarding the entrance on this calm and sedate Friday holiday. They quickly overpower and kill 2 other guards just inside the iron…

You give me bad gas, My Baap… 150 150 ComfortAid International

You give me bad gas, My Baap…

My distant relative, a pious man of advancing age, regards me with watery eyes, his mouth struggling to cope with overflow of paan remnants so when he speaks, his speech is incoherent and I have to pay special attention to understand him. This relative, (I can’t pinpoint how we are exactly related, but he has…

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