Wednesday, 11th December, 2019

Pakistani Cinema in the early years-a talk by Siraj Khan 

Time: 6.00 for 6.30pm startCinema in Pakistan
Venue: High Commission for Pakistan, 36 Lowndes Square, London SW1X 8JN.
Admission: This event is open to Members of The Pakistan Society and their guests.
RSVP: Please ensure that you register your attendance via the website for security and catering purposes. REGISTER HERE

Please note: You may book only for yourself, your spouse and two further guests or yourself and three guests (maximum of four in total). You will be asked to fill in the name of the person each place is for, including your own. You will receive an email confirmation of your places but no physical tickets will be issued.

If you wish to bring more guests please email: info@thepakistansociety.org.uk

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Siraj Khan will talk on the Pakistan cinema with a historical perspective and will showcase the crucial role that it has played in a developing society in Pakistan’s formative years, for the nation to emerge as an exemplary modern Islamic state.

Films play a formative role in crystallizing a culture or addressing a contemporary issue, especially in an emerging landscape. In the first decade after its independence in August 1947, Pakistan too had multiple challenges staring at it, but it was also in these first 10-15 years, that its structure was cast into place. Being a composite art, cinema became responsible for popularising music, dance and literature among the common people of Pakistan. In the process, films started to have almost a hypnotic influence on most adults and even children. To go to a cinema to watch films was to escape into a different world for a few hours, which made it easier to accept the hard realities of real life, at an affordable price.

By the end of the first 10 years of Pakistan’s formation, black-and-white cinema had become a powerful vehicle for culture, education, leisure and propaganda. Films of many genre, from documentary to drama were produced, which had a dramatic impact on lives in many tangible ways and are now excellent examples of the important role they have played on the social landscape in those years. Irrespective of the theme – whether joy, suspense, romance or social drama, entertainment was always the over-riding factor. Perhaps, the most striking aspect of this development was that until TV made its entry in late 1964, Pakistan’s fledgling black-and-white cinema provided the only source of family entertainment for the elite, middle class and the common man alike. This talk will take you down the route it took to get there.

Siraj Khan was born in Karachi, to parents who had migrated from India after partition, and lived in the city until he was 25. Having travelled to 75 countries across five continents, living in the Middle East and the Asia-Pacific region, he and his family now live in Boston. A ‘world citizen’ living a life without boundaries, he is a connoisseur of South Asian film music, using art and culture effectively, to build bridges between boundaries and people. He has written scripts and directed many successful concerts of performing arts in multiple cities of the US, South Asia and UAE and as a freelance writer, contributes regularly to several journals and publications.

By profession, Siraj is a global finance and audit specialist, who has in the past worked for multinationals like British Petroleum, Schlumberger and Alcoa in the corporate sector and the global non-profit Pathfinder International. He has also served the Government of Pakistan, several times and sits on the board of several non-profits and charities in the US, Pakistan and India. Siraj has been recognized for his work towards women empowerment and services to children and youth.


Wednesday, 18th December, 2019

Rafting down the Hunza Valley-a talk by Jonathan Rider and Edmund Le Brun

Time: 6.00 for 6.30pm start 
Venue: High Commission for Pakistan, 36 Lowndes Square, London SW1X 8JN.
Admission: This event is open to Members of The Pakistan Society and their guests.
RSVP: Please ensure that you register your attendance via the website for security and catering purposes. REGISTER HERE

Please note: You may book only for yourself, your spouse and two further guests or yourself and three guests (maximum of four in total). You will be asked to fill in the name of the person each place is for, including your own. You will receive an email confirmation of your places but no physical tickets will be
issued.
Edmund Le Brun

If you wish to bring more guests please email: info@thepakistansociety.org.uk

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Jonathan Rider and Edmund Le Brun travelled down the Hunza Valley by raft and foot to see how the Karakoram Highway is changing the region. Taking in some of the most spectacular scenery Pakistan has to offer, they pass through landscapes rich in culture and history. By taking the less travelled route along this world famous highway, they hope to see another side to this region. The Hunza is unchartered waters. Jonathan and Edmund are the pioneers of travelling down the Hunza river in a raft. They share their Hunza adventures while noting how the Karakoram Highway is changing the landscape. Passing along the same course as its ancient forebear – the Silk Road – the new Karakoram Highway promises to bring economic development and growth to the region as well as other changes and developments.

Jonathan Rider
Jonathan runs Aleph Strategies, a consulting firm specialising in overseas development and humanitarian aid. A Fellow of the RGS, Jonathan trained as an archaeologist at the Universities of Nottingham and Oxford before working in public affairs in Westminster. Later, in Afghanistan, he worked for the Aga Khan Foundation, before managing conservation activities for UNESCO at the Bamiyan World Heritage Sites.

Edmund Le Brun
Edmund is an Oxford graduate and a Forbes 30 under 30 social entrepreneur. He set up his business, ISHKAR, after living in Afghanistan for three years, and today works on projects in war-torn countries around the world. Alongside adventure talks, Edmund also regularly speaks about social entrepreneurship, and doing business in frontier.

Sponsors & Supporters

The High Commission for Pakistan London
The Foreign and Commonwealth Office
Bestway Group
United Bank UK
Habib Bank UK
EFG Private Bank Limited