imperfect | world | 2010

Archive for the ‘Asia’ Category

Tres Tristes Tigres

Jun 29,2010

A new short film directed by David Munoz and co-produced by me has just been finished. The film tells of the forced repatriation of three Bangladeshi migrant workers after the financial crisis in Dubai, and the implications for their lives.

David’s last short film - Flowers of Rwanda - won the Spanish Film Academy’s Goya Award for Best Short Documentary as well as 42 film awards from various countries all over the world.

Go to the web site HERE.

Press package HERE.

Rohingya Refugees ignored

  • Filed under: Asia
Mar 9,2010

An American medical charity has warned that thousands of Burmese refugees in Bangladesh are facing starvation. Physicians for Human Rights said government authorities are preventing the Rohingya, a Muslim minority, from receiving adequate care. Read here.

Jul 28,2009

Migrant workers have countless tales to tell and no doubt there are a countless tales worthy of the big screen treatment. Bandhobi is a Korean Film and it deals with migrant worker issues . Don’t ask me what I think of it. I have not seen it.  Here is the synopsis below. If anyone has a copy…

Korean Film

Korean film 2nd image

Summary below is from the film web site.

Min-suh, a 17-year old rebellious high school Korean girl, lives in a small apartment with her mother and her mother’s penniless lover. She hates mother’s lover and doesn’t understand both of them. Karim, a 29-year old Muslim migrant worker from Bangladesh has to leave Korea in a month. Before departing, he is desperately searching for his ex-boss to get his unpaid salary. One day, as Min-suh’s summer vacation begins, he encounters Min-suh in a bus, and together they set out on an emotional journey. Bandhobi is Bengali, meaning  ‘Friend’ in English.

More from Rezwan HERE.

Jul 15,2009

..Remittances to South and East Asia are still inching up. The pace of growth, however, has slowed down. World Bank cited Pakistan, Bangladesh, the Philippines and Nepal as some of those that have recently been registering lower growth rates. The Philippines have been posting less than 5% monthly growth rates in the past months, a far cry from the double-digit increases in the previous years…

Jan 20,2009

A couple of days ago I blogged about the news of the Thai military maltreating Bangladeshi and Burmese migrants and effectively consigning them to their death on the seas. Now we hear that the labour recruiters are shamelessly exploiting all the uncertainty to extract even more money from the anxious relatives of these migrants.

Jan 19,2009

published in the Pakistan Observer. Chauvinist and ill-informed bilge by some clown called Ibn-e-Rehmat.

Jan 16,2009

Thai soldiers tied up our hands and then put us in boats without engines. These were towed into the high sea by motorised boats and left to drift.

“We were without food and water. The Thai soldiers clearly wanted us to die on the boats.

Read it HERE

E-waste by Robert Knoth

Oct 20,2008

Quite a fascinating slide presentation of photographs from Pakistan by Robert Knoth. Devastating photographs of people eeking out a living from what the photographer calls “E-Waste.” A Greenpeace initiative.  Click the image.

Oct 17,2008

Living in Cambridge as I do, I have had the misfortune of meeting many ex-alumni of St Stephen’s College, Delhi. Almost without exception they are arrogant, full of themselves and have a jaundiced view of the world ( whether they count themselves as left or right or just plain bigot). (Apologies to Amitav Ghosh for this massive generalisation - but I am sure you would agree Mr Ghosh?)  So I am not in the least bit suprised to find that V K Malhotra of the BJP went to St Stephen’s.

You can see for yourself by reading this interview with Malhotra where he excels himself by conflating terms and issues:

All Muslims are not terrorists but all terrorists are Muslims. Saying that don’t target them (Muslims) does not mean that even terrorists should not be targeted.


Terrorists should get the message that once they are caught, they cannot escape.

We would like to see that everyone in Delhi has an identity card. We will make it mandatory. One lakh Pakistanis and four lakh Bangladeshis are here, who came with visas and did not go back. They have all sort of become citizens here…. Pakistanis and Bangladeshis. All sorts of criminal groups are coming in from Bangladesh. We will implement it right after we come to power, and it is very important on our agenda. We will ask for a very strong terror law in Delhi, like the one in London.
Sep 17,2008

Gurkhas  accused ministers of a dishonourable failure to reciprocate their loyalty by refusing to let the Nepalese infantrymen settle in the country for which they had risked their lives in battle.

Joanna Lumley - now she is always interesting….

Pakistan - “land of the pure”

  • Filed under: Asia
Sep 1,2008

Pakistan - it means “land of the pure.” Shooting and burying alive young women is an interesting take on purity.

Aug 29,2008

Are you like me fed up of hearing about the “American Dream” and seeing Barack Obama’s face everywhere? Are you sick to the teeth of hearing american commentators squawking “BRRAAAAAACK” all over the show?  Sick isn’t it all this fanfare? Remember the turn out for him in Berlin earlier in the summer? I mean what the hell? He is simply a bloody opposition politician for god’s sake.

Anyway, the excessive media noise is useful when it comes to burying real news stories. And yesterday there was a real belter of a story which should remind everyone of the shape and colour of the so-called American Deam. A law suit has been filed in Los Angeles

One of America’s biggest military contractors (KBR- once a Halliburton subsidiary)  is being sued by a Nepali labourer and the families of a dozen other employees who say they were taken against their will to work in Iraq. All but one of the Nepalese workers were subsequently kidnapped and murdered….

The 12 Nepalis were seized by a group calling itself the Army of Ansar al-Sunna. The men were taken hostage on 20 August 2004 and shortly afterwards the kidnappers released a video of one being beheaded and the other 11 shot.

Many Bangladeshis were similarly tricked and made to work in Iraq. I posted a story earlier.

Aug 7,2008

Remember that nonsense survey by the pollster Robert Worcester? It must be the most meaningless survey ever funded and its findings are about as useful as a chocolate teapot. Well that statistical nonsense still has currency. Here you have Major General Md. Ishtiaq, Bangladesh’s ambassador to Turkey,  repeating it for the benefit of his Turkish audience.

But do read the interview. It is quite interesting otherwise.

Jul 29,2008

If you have been wondering why my blog posts are so sparse, I am ready to reveal to you my humiliating secret. I am addicted to playing Carrom. I pronounce it Karam. Personae Studios,  who have developed it for the iPhone and iPod,  call it Carrom. This Singapore based software outfit have done the blogging world a great service by effectively removing me from blogging activity for long periods of time.

Use Aps store on your phone to download it. It costs £0.59