Hammad Azhar and ugly charts (again) – this week in Pakistan’s business and economics twitterverse

This week we have a bone to pick with Hammad Azhar for not being able to explain the LNG crisis, embarrassing himself with his conduct on Shahzeb Khanzada’s show, and somehow still wanting to debate him. Other than that we discuss ugly charts, political operatives with thin skin, and how banks make your life difficult. Ariba Shahid brings you all this and more in this week’s social media roundup. 


Bone to pick with Hammad Azhar 

A sitting minister is singling out a journalist and challenging him. Kind of childish if you ask me. Yes, the LNG issue has become a hot debate, but the fact is that if Khanzada’s information was wrong, it was wrong as either a matter of interpretation or the provision of incorrect facts from the government. In either case, it is the government that has failed to communicate the price LNG issue effectively both to the media and to the general public. At this point, a debate might just be more embarrassing for Hammad Azhar than anything else. While he may have been taught at Aitchison that perseverance commands success and all that other mambo jumbo they preach at assemblies while kids freeze in shorts during the winter months in that massive relic Mr Azhar and his friends call a school, this might be a moment to sit out another debate. 

I for one speak from experience considering I’ve reached out to Mr Azhar a number of times for clarification on the govt’s stance for other decisions only to be left unanswered. In such situations, I’ve tried to make sure my reporting was fair by putting in effort to understand government rationale. It would’ve been easier had Mr Azhar merely responded like his counterpart ministers do. Heck, some even call back. 

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Thicker skin needed 

Let’s go back to the first grade when idiot and stupid was considered a bad word. What is up with the govt personnel and shutting up dissenting voices? Sir, with all due respect, grow a thicker skin. If you’re in the business of government and policy, you’re bound to be called an idiot, and most likely at some point or the other the person calling you an idiot is going to be right. Learn to laugh some things off – you might live longer.

Banks to make your skin crawl 


It is the job of the banking sector to make your life more difficult. The sooner you accept it, the better. We detailed some of the woes of SERF in our previous edition. Check out the article to see how banks are not the only institutions which are laughably bureaucratic and inefficient. 


Lost opportunities

NIT had the ability to be so much more than it is now. Considering the portfolio it has, it can very much rekindle. 

Chart nerds 

Sometimes you don’t need a yellow chart to be wrong. Sometimes all you need is a graphic designer with no aesthetic sense and someone willing to commit a chart crime. Considering how many ugly charts are out there with bad math, how about a compilation of the worst charts we’ve seen categorised by mathematics, representation, and aesthetics? Let us know if anyone would be interested. Even if nobody isn’t, we will probably do it anyway because we’ve got a few chart nerds at the office. 


We’re posting two quote reactions to the same tweet because it deserves to be here. 

Thoughts and prayers 

Thoughts and prayers go out to all the victims of fires in Karachi this week. 

Mundane silliness 

Imagine taxing helmets when you’re not self sufficient and your country already suffers from a small proportion of people wearing helmets. 

Where is the woman in the room? 

This is why you need to have women and their pov taken into consideration when making policies.

Ariba Shahid
The author is a business journalist at Profit. She can be reached at [email protected] or at twitter.com/AribaShahid



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