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A short guide for the mind and soul in the recent situation

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We got in a conversation with ShaharBano, a lifestyle blogger from Karachi currently based in Lahore. We asked her a few questions and being a working mother with two children, this is what she has to share.

1) Now that schools have been shut down, what activities do you suggest for kids to keep them sane? 

Since I am a 9 to 5 working mom, I find it extremely challenging to keep the kids busy therefore I am a big advocate of letting them get bored and they will figure something out. Nevertheless, I prep one activity during the night to keep them busy for the first half of the day and then outdoor play in the evening does it for me. Besides that, you can always read to them, make snacks, encourage imaginative and independent play.

2) Depression is home to the empty mind, what do you suggest for working women to do while working from home? 
Honestly speaking, I feel at this time of pandemic no mind is empty. There are always thoughts. Even negative ones that may lead to a different kind of depression. So my suggestion is that it is ok to be vulnerable and even cry sometimes but once you have vented it all out, think about the things in your control and what you can do about them, take safety measures as much as you can and leave the rest on Allah.
3) How should couples tackle this time, especially when one or both of them are working? 
It takes two to tango so whatever it is, good times, bad times, you are both together in it. If one of them is working then it is sort of auto defined who manages what but in case both are working then play on each other’s strengths. Take charge of the things you are independently good at and the ones you are not, do them in turns or together, whatever suits you.
4) A basic guide to staying away from depression these days and what do you have to say to people who are still not taking the outbreak seriously? 
For the depression, I will say don’t panic. Stay home as much as you can and while doing so, accept and pray. For the people still not taking it seriously honestly, I am at a loss of words. This. Is. Serious! As serious as it can get. And as it is we have a very frail chance of making out of it but with the way our people are behaving, the casual attitude and zero sense of responsibility, the corona-worona-kuch-nahi-hota approach. I don’t know where to bang my head. Please know that it is now locally transmitting. The only way to stop it is by distancing yourself. Please stay indoors. Please do not do casual get-togethers and parties. Please observe social distancing. It is the need of the hour.
5) Basic mistakes that all of us are making with regards to personal hygiene? 
I think going around looking for sanitizers when washing hands with soap and water is more effective.

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Entertainment

Zubab Rana is the Standout performer of the Drama Fitrat!

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It is reasonable to call Zubab Rana, a newcomer in the entertainment industry because the youthful entertainer is finding her space in the business; however, notwithstanding that, she has prevailed with regards to winning the hearts of crowds with her splendid performances. Directly from her absolute first drama Naseebon Jali that aired on Hum TV, Zubab Rana has figured out how to harden her presence in the business as a marvel with the ability to take on any job that comes to her direction. She has constructed a collection for herself for taking the more unfamiliar way, treading new waters, and always surprising us with her charm. Today her name is incorporated among the rundown of entertainers who can stand their ground before the camera and convey what is anticipated from them.

In Fitrat, she assumes a somewhat unglamorized part of Rafia, one of the drama’s leading characters. There is no scene where Zubab Rana doesn’t look pretty, but in Rafia, there is an innocence that is a part of Rana’s charm that just can’t go unnoticed. Especially if you see her in her other ongoing drama ‘Bharaas’ where she has taken upon a completely different role and can’t help but think how can someone pull off both negative and positive characters so well.

Though, this isn’t just about pulling off a negative or positive role. Rafia is a multi-dimensional character – and Rana knows just what to do with the character to convey her special story to the audiences in the most heartwarming manner. She perfectly balances the scales between neither being too forceful nor too timid, which makes her the standout performer of the whole drama.

Rana has set up an enormous fan following over the past few years. She has gotten known for her incredible acting chops and a stunning hard-working attitude that has given her a distinct edge over her peers. With every last one of her undertakings, she has figured out how to convey what is anticipated from her and has gathered commendation from the audience.

 

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Lux Style Awards Gone Digital This Year

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The digit of 19 has been very critical in the year of 2020 as the entire world coped up with the pandemic of COVID 19. It was more coincidental specifically for the style world of Pakistan as the 19th edition of that most prestigious style awards of Pakistan ‘Lux Style Awards’ organized digitally in its entire history following of the SOPs of COVID 19.

A more than an hour program was composed of a red carpet, awards announcements, and few performances. All nominees did not attend the event but only winners, who had been announced a couple of weeks before the award giving ceremony. A few winners participated in the show via their already recorded video messages.

Frieha Altaf, director for the LUX Style Awards, ever since its initiation some 18 years ago, shared her views on the experience. “I’m happy and excited that Unilever Pakistan and the LUX brand team are making an all-out effort to appreciate and celebrate the artists who have worked the entire 2019 and showcased immense talent. The LSA this year is different and extra-ordinary and is expected to be out of the box so stay tuned for an exciting event.”

LSA 2020 awards were given for 28 categories in four genres of fashion, film, music and television. Virtual zoom sessions of juries at multiple times during the year collected to evaluate each portfolio and pick a final winner. In addition, two lifetime achievement awards, the Unilever Chairman’s Lifetime Achievement Award and a Lifetime Achievement in Fashion will also be awarded.

The historic event started with Hope Song, written and composed by Azaan Sami Khan, a singing and dance performance by Hadiqa Kiyani, new sensation Hadia Hashmi and Ali Tariq with the dance performance by Faith, choreographed by Wahab Shah.

Red carpet was hosted by emerging and talented model Mushk Kaleem while the main hosts of the event were none other than stunning Mehwish Hayat and witty Ahmed Ali Butt.

The show was webcast on https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC0GrbQTwcFUs0llkV0SJ6DA on New Year Eve and telecast on Geo Entertainment two days later.

A congregation of stars also on the show to present/announce awards, like Sarwat Gilani and Mehar Bano from the critically acclaimed web series Churails, style icon Ayesha Omar, singers Ali Tariq and Natasha Baig, the stunning Mansha Pasha, beautiful Sohai Ali Abro, dashing Emmad Irfani, and the eclectic Abid Brohi.

An interesting comic skit on film segment was presented by Arsalan Naseer of CBA. The show was need with a Lux signature song by Jimmy Khan featuring Mehwish Hayat.

In fashion, Hasnain Lehri begged his fifth Lux Style Awards for male model of the year while female model of the year award was given to Zara Abid, who lost her life in tragic air crash last May.   

Drama serial Ranjha Ranjha Kardi secured four awards in categories of best director, best playwright, best TV actor male – viewers’ choice, best TV actor female – critics’ choice from total eight awards in the genre of television.

Regardless of many commercial and successful feature films released in the year 2019, the most critically acclaimed film Laal Kabootar got four awards in film section; best film, best director, best actor viewer’s choice, and best actor critics.

The superstar of Pakistani entertainment industry Mahira Khan begged two awards in the categories of best actress viewers’ choice and critics’ choice for her performance in film Superstar.

On receiving the awards, Khan expressed her faith in the film – Superstar and how she enjoyed shooting for it. “When you actually do believe in something, stick through it”, the actress further sand and thanked her fans.

This is first time in the history of Lux Style Awards that two child stars became the recipient of awards in the categories of singer of the year and best emerging talent TV.

The Unilever Chairman’s Lifetime Achievement Award was conferred to Anwar Maqsood, revered compere, writer and host par-excellence. The Lifetime Achievement Award in Fashion was awarded to photojournalist and photographer Tapu Javeri.

The winners of 19th LUX Style Awards are as follows;

Fashion

Model of the Year – Male, Hasnain Lehri

Model of the Year – Female, Zara Abid (posthumous)

Achievement in Fashion Design – Pret, Generation

Achievement in Fashion Design – Luxury Pret , Sana Safinaz

Achievement in Fashion Design – Bridal Couture, Sana Safinaz

Best Menswear Designer, Ismail Farid

Best Fashion Photographer, Shahbaz Shazi

Best Makeup and Hair Artist , Saima Bargfrede

Best Emerging Talent- Fashion , Sachal Afzal for Male Model

Music

Best Song, Raavi by Sajjad Ali from Raavi

Singer of the Year, Hadia Hashmi – Bol Hu

Best Emerging Talent , Big Foot Music – Hamad Khan, Sohaib Lari

Best Playback Singer , Ali Tariq for Behka Na from Parey Hut Love

Best Original Sound Track, Ranjha Ranjha Kardi by JB Sisters/Rahma Ali Composed and Produced by Sami Khan

Television

Best TV Play, Mere Paas Tum Ho

Best Play Director, Kashif Nisar for Ranjha Ranjha Kardi

Best Play Writer, Faiza Iftikhar for Ranjha Ranjha Kardi

Best TV Actor – Critics, Zahid Ahmed for Ishq Zah e Naseeb

Best TV Actress – Critics, Iqra Aziz for Ranjha Ranjha Kardi

Best TV Actor – Viewer’s Choice, Imran Ashraf for Ranjha Ranjha Kardi

Best TV Actress -Viewer’s Choice, Yumna Zaidi for Inkaar

Best Emerging Talent TV , Shees Gul for Meray Paas Tum Ho

Film

Best Film, Laal Kabootar, Best Director Film, Kamal Khan for Laal Kabootar

Best Film Actor- Viewer’s Choice, Ahmed Ali Akbar for Laal Kabootar

Best Film Actress- Viewer’s Choice, Mahira Khan for Superstar

Best Film Actor Critics, Rashid Farooqui for Laal Kabootar

Best Film Actress Critics. Mahira Khan for Superstar

Achievement Awards

Unilever Chairman’s Lifetime Achievement Award, Anwar Maqsood

The Lifetime Achievement Award in Fashion, Tapu Javeri.

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Ab Buss: Pakistani Filmmaker Climbs On Creating Awareness through Art

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It is heartening that Pakistani entertainment industry has taken a step forward in portraying the real life gruesome incident in their films and dramas to create awareness among general public about the seriousness of the issues. A recent example is of a short film name, Ab Buss on digital platform See Prime that has been shot over the dreadful and unfortunate Lahore-Sialkot motorway incident. The incident that occurred on 9th September, midnight of Tuesday and Wednesday, where two people allegedly dragged a woman waiting for help on the road in her car with two children towards the near-by farms and gang raped her right in front of her children.

The film has been viewed by hundreds and thousands of people have sought an unexpected attention of the audience.

Ab Buss reflecting a dark tone starts with the scene in which a woman practicing with weapons and trying to have command over the use of sharp-pointed knife, having agony and fear in her eyes. All this indicates intent of a murder but as the story proceeds, it is shattered daughter, who has to reach to Lahore with a young daughter to see her near-to-death father but afraid of the fact that she might get caught from the wolves in the disguise of ill intended man roaming free in her way that is why just for the sake of guarding herself

 The film concludes with an eye-opener how unsafe a woman is in Pakistan.

Sanam Saeed, a well-known actor is playing lead role in the nine minutes long movie that has been directed by Mohsin Talat.

Talking about her role in the film, Sanam Saeed said, when she read the script, she considered it her responsibility to do justice to the character, adding that such incidents can only be raised over digital platforms.

“I had never felt such fear in my life before, but my role in ‘Ab Buss’ was enough to frightened and disturb me as I went through the story based on this horrendous incident but at the same time I think I have just paly my part to create awareness among people about the drastic effects of such incidents on society.”

Saeed further said that by doing that role, her mission was to make people think that how such incidents affect the women psychologicallyand expressed a strong will to work on such stories in future too.,

She criticized the conventional media for not addressing such issues through dramas and movies.

The Director of the movie, Mohsin Talat told that the central idea of this short movie was pitched by the Writer, Shahid Dogar and Executive Producer Seemi Naveed.

Mohsin Talat added that it was not an easy job to pen down the incident in to a story, and some scenes were without any communication and speech.

When asked about casting of Sanam Saeed for the leading role, he said that he was in hunt of exceptional actresses as only few actresses show an interest for working on social issues. So he finalized Sanam for the leading character.

“The mission was just to propagate the message that “enough is enough”, it’s time for everyone to speak, cry and yell aloud”, added Mohsin.

The Director Mohsin Talat has also played a short role in the movie. He reasoned his appearance due to the financial or budgetary crisis, with a laugh, saying, it’s good the story reached the climax.

According to Talat, to develop and sustain audience’s interest, he created suspense, and revealed the complete story in the last-minute. The movie ended with a strong message that ” An alone woman is responsibility rather a chance”.

One should not forget the eminent and most popular couple “Naveed Arshad and Seemi Naveed” on which Pakistan’s first find footage film “Aks Band” was released. They own a digital platform that was initiated with a short movie “Article 370” demonstrating the circumstances of the Indian Occupied Jammu and Kashmir after India’s unilateral decision of abrogating article 370 and 35A on 5th August 2019.

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