The bane of development

In our collective and individual mindset, there still exists a colonial legacy that manifests itself well in various situations – from a classroom in school to a tour along the peripheries. Scholars term it as a colonial mentality, by which they mean “an internalised attitude of ethnic or cultural inferiority felt by people who are colonized”. It is multilayered going from top to bottom. In essence, the colonial mentality is a vertical thinking attitude that measures things in a hierarchical order. If inferiority exists in…

How Swat-Kohistan lags far behind in education

Introduction  This report based on a research study on the state of education in Swat-Kohistan; and is a part of an education improvement campaign in Swat-Kohistan called Improving Quality, Retention and Access (IQRA)—this initiative is conceived and implemented by a local civil society organisation, Idara Baraye Taleem-o-Taraqi (IBT) with the financial support from the nationwide educational awareness and advocacy campaign “Alif Ailaan”. Alif Ailaan works to increase awareness of education related issues among all…

Bahadar’s Almanac

When I still used to lend a hand in the fields to my father, now 78, he would refer to a certain guy, Bahadar |bahadər|, for his oral traditions about the right weather for sowing and harvesting. At that time, I was in college and was familiar with the Gregorian calendar, which was commonly known as Angrezi (English calendar) in our community. My father always ignored the Gregorian calendar and preferred Bahadar’s oral almanac to it. Now I no longer help out with farming and work at my office instead, where we always use…