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Game of Thrones final.....

Game of Thrones final.....

Agencies  "Game of Thrones" spent the lapse between seasons five and six being peppered by questions about Jon Snow's fate. Based on Sunday's extra-long finale, the producers will be spared that irritation, but anticip...

Aamir Liaquat's show banned for three days

Aamir Liaquat's show banned for three days

Staff Reporter The Pakistan Electronic Media Regulatory Authority (Pemra) on Monday, after receiving hundreds of complaints, barred TV anchor Aamir Liaquat’s 'Inam Ghar' show for three days on Geo Entertainment, said a sta...

Mufti Qavi's Ruet-e-Hilal membership suspended

Mufti Qavi's Ruet-e-Hilal membership suspended

Staff Reporter ISLAMABAD: Federal Minister for Religious Affairs Sardar Yousaf on Wednesday suspended Mufti Abdul Qavi’s membership of Ruet-i-Hilal Committee after pictures of him with model and Facebook celebrity Qandeel Baloch surfac...

FIA stops Ayyan Ali from flying abroad

FIA stops Ayyan Ali from flying abroad

  Staff Reporter KARACHI: Model Ayyan Ali’s attempt to go abroad once again hit to the ground when Federal Investigation Agency (FIA) officials on Wednesday barred her at Karachi airport. Ayyan, who is facing money lau...

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Game of Thrones final.....

Agencies 

"Game of Thrones" spent the lapse between seasons five and six being peppered by questions about Jon Snow's fate. Based on Sunday's extra-long finale, the producers will be spared that irritation, but anticipation for next season should be no less palpable.

"Thrones" is known for loading up its penultimate episode with huge, Imax-quality battle sequences, as it did last week, living up to HBO's old "It's not TV" slogan.

Still, the 69-minute finale Sunday was hardly a low-key exercise. Rather, it contained a major, much-discussed reveal, and advanced the story in ways that bring a possible endgame into much greater focus.

"Game of Thrones" is almost surely the most analyzed, parsed and theorized-about show on television -- one of the high-class problems associated with being a huge genre hit.

As a consequence, much has already been made of the ascendant role female characters haveplayed this season. While scenes of violence toward women have triggered past controversy, this year women not only took center stage but proved every bit as ruthless and resourceful as any of the men.

Related: 'Game of Thrones' epic battle: Jon Snow vs. the most hated man on TV

In the finale, the clear theme was vengeance -- which was exacted on multiple fronts. That included Cersei Lannister (Lena Headey) seizing control by eliminating the High Sparrow (Jonathan Pryce) and his zealot followers who humiliated her.

Having painstakingly transformed herself into an assassin, Arya Stark (Maisie Williams) also achieved payback -- in a brilliantly mounted sequence -- for the program's most notorious act of barbarism: the Red Wedding.

Elsewhere, the witch Melisandre (Carice van Houten) was banished for her role in the death of young princess Shireen, one of the fifth season's most stomach-turning interludes.

Finally, the multi-episode dive into "Thrones" mythology confirmed what has long been a source of speculation: Jon Snow (Kit Harington) is not the illegitimate child of Eddard Stark, but rather his nephew. That creates plenty of tantalizing possibilities, especially with Daenerys (Emilia Clarke) beginning her massive invasion.

Even with its narrative leaps, it's almost hard to imagine "Thrones" completing this sprawling story in the two seasons that remain. After all, the finale offered plenty of foreshadowing regarding "the great war ... still to come" with the White Walkers, pitting the living against the armies of the dead.

If this were a play, the curtain calls alone ought to take three episodes, and the producers are talking about wrapping the whole thing up in 13.

Still, at this point it's hard to second-guess producers David Benioff and D.B. Weiss, who, working with Martin, have created a series for the ages. And while it's hard to predict when and how its Winter will end, if what remains rivals what has transpired, calling it "epic" won't fully do it justice.

 

Aamir Liaquat's show banned for three days

Staff Reporter

The Pakistan Electronic Media Regulatory Authority (Pemra) on Monday, after receiving hundreds of complaints, barred TV anchor Aamir Liaquat’s 'Inam Ghar' show for three days on Geo Entertainment, said a statement released by the regulatory authority.

Pemra had issued a show cause notice after the June 6 episode, which showed a reenactment by the show's host of a girl committing suicide, stated the Pemra statement.

The episode aired also had a guest who used abusive language while on air. Show cause notice was issued in June 14, added the statement.

During the June 25 transmission of the show, a female caller's inappropriate phone call was also reviewed by the regulatory authority.

A member from Pemra's Council of Complaints, also shared a video of Liaquat hugging a pole while singing a song.

Pemra said it had received hundreds of complaints from viewers, after which they took action. Representative from Geo Entertainment has sought 15 days to submit a detailed reply regarding the many complaints recieved during the show's transmission.

The council has directed for a reply to be submitted by the third day after Eid holidays. After the submission of the reply, further action will be debated upon.

As an initial step, the Council of Compliants, due to Geo's continued violation of the code of conduct, recommended suspension of the transmission of the show from June 28 to June 30, said the Pemra statement.

The channel has been advised to apologise for airing non-professional content which hurt the sentiments of the viewers, added the regulatory authority's statement. Liaquat has also been asked to issue a personal apology during the July 1 transmission of his show.

"In case of contempt of the order or no apology, the show will suspended indefinitely," stated Pemra in the statement.

"On the recommendations of the council, the relevant authority under Section 27 has advised Geo to suspend the transmission, and to ensure Amir Liaquat apologises in the beginning of July 1 transmission," added the statement.

Mufti Qavi's Ruet-e-Hilal membership suspended

Staff Reporter

ISLAMABAD: Federal Minister for Religious Affairs Sardar Yousaf on Wednesday suspended Mufti Abdul Qavi’s membership of Ruet-i-Hilal Committee after pictures of him with model and Facebook celebrity Qandeel Baloch surfaced on social media.

The minister, who said the photos were 'controversial', also suspended the mufti’s membership in the National Ulema Mushaikh Council, a spokesman for the Ministry of Religious Affairs said.

The matter of Mufti Abdul Qavi's photos has been referred to National Ulema Mushaikh Council for further procedure, the spokesperson added.

"Qavi will not be allowed to attend meetings of the Ruet-e-Hilal Committee and National Ulema Mushaikh Council until further orders. Mufti Qavi's fate will be decided after the opinion of the National Ulema Mushaikh Council regarding his selfies and behavior," the spokesman said.

On Monday, Pakistan's infamous social media sensation Qandeel Baloch uploaded selfies on her Facebook and Twitter accounts with Mufti Abdul Qavi, which went viral.

Ever since Qavi's pictures with Baloch surfaced, social media was rife with speculation about his association with the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf's (PTI) ulema wing. However, PTI spokesman Naeemul Haque issued a denial on Tuesday.

Speaking to the media, Qavi said it was Baloch herself who had requested a meeting and came to meet him at a hotel. He also said he was unaware of his suspension from the two committees.

In a video of the meeting that Baloch uploaded on Facebook, Mufti Qavi can be seen saying that he will guide Baloch on spiritual and religious issues and that she had agreed to follow his instructions.

The Ruet-e-Hilal Committee is responsible for sighting the new moon to determines important dates for the Islamic lunar calendar.

The National Ulema Mushaikh Council consists of members from mainstream boards of religious seminaries belonging to Barelvi, Shia, Deobandi and Ahle Hadees schools of thought and madressahs affiliated with the Jamaat-i-Islami to evolve consensus among different sects from all provinces.

 

FIA stops Ayyan Ali from flying abroad

 

Staff Reporter

KARACHI: Model Ayyan Ali’s attempt to go abroad once again hit to the ground when Federal Investigation Agency (FIA) officials on Wednesday barred her at Karachi airport.

Ayyan, who is facing money laundering charges, had her name struck off Exit Control List (ECL) by Sindh High Court but was not allowed to board a Dubai-bound flight.

The officials maintained that interior ministry has so far not sent any notification to immigration authorities regarding the move, therefore they cannot allow her to fly abroad.

FIA's Assistant Director Departure Lubna Tiwana told Dawn that Ayyan arrived at airport and approached immigration officials for permission but when they cross-checked her details, her name was found on ECL.

On Tuesday, Sindh High Court directed the interior ministry to strike the name of model Ayyan Ali off the exit control list by Wednesday and allow her to travel abroad.

The model was arrested on March 14, 2015, at Benazir Bhutto International Airport in Islamabad while trying to travel abroad and carrying foreign currency worth $506,800 without permission of the State Bank of Pakistan and without any lawful excuse as to why she was taking the money abroad.

On April 25 while hearing a contempt of court petition filed by Ayyan Ali, the Supreme Court had asked her to approach the SHC for agitating against placement of her name on the ECL for the second time, a few hours after its removal from the list.

Soon after the April 13 Supreme Court judgement of upholding the March 7 SHC order for removing the model’s name from the ECL, her name was removed from the list on April 11. But it was placed again on the list at the request of the Federal Board of Revenue (FBR).

Now in the fresh petition filed through Advocate Faiz-ur-Rehman, the ministry pleaded that the June 2 high court order was not sustainable under the law since the name of the model had been placed on the list in accordance with ECL Rules 2010 and ECL policy notified on Sept 16, 2015.

Ayyan Ali had approached the court in December last year requesting the removal of her name from the ECL.

Her counsel maintained that having her name on the ECL was illegal as authorities had returned her passport.

According to Ayyan Ali, she was required to travel abroad for professional assignments and medical treatment, and since she had been released from jail on bail, her name should be struck off the ECL.

She said the authorities’ decision to disallow her from travelling abroad was a violation of her fundamental rights guaranteed under Article 18 of the Constitution.

 

Spotlight gets best picture award

Agencies 

LOS ANGELES — In a ceremony that became a raucous diversity lesson under the guidance of its host, Chris Rock, “Spotlight,” a newspaper drama about the Roman Catholic Church cover-up of sexual abuse by priests, snatched top honors at the 88th Academy Awards on Sunday. It beat out “The Revenant,” which had been widely viewed as the favorite, but which nevertheless earned a best actor prize for Leonardo DiCaprio, his first Oscar, and a best director award for Alejandro G. Iñárritu.

Michael Sugar, a “Spotlight” producer, said he hoped the win would “resonate all the way to the Vatican.”

The Revenant” wound up capturing three Oscars over all, compared with two for “Spotlight.’’ “Mad Max: Fury Road” led all films with six awards, including several in the technical categories.

Leonardo wins first Oscar Award

BBC 

Leonardo DiCaprio has finally won his first Oscar for survival epic The Revenant, after six nominations.

He was named best actor at the 88th Academy Awards, with Brie Larson named best actress for Room.

Spotlight took home the best picture Oscar with Mad Max: Fury Road picking up the most awards of the night, with six accolades.

Mark Rylance won the best supporting actor Oscar, with fellow Briton Sam Smith winning best original song.

Among the winners for Mad Max: Fury Road - nominated for 10 Oscars including best director for George Miller - was British designer Jenny Beavan, for best costume design.

The Revenant won three of the 12 awards for which it was nominated. Alejandro Inarritu also won best director and Emmanuel Lubezki won his third Oscar for cinematography in a row, having won in 2015 for Birdman and 2014 for Gravity.

DiCaprio received a standing ovation as he picked up his award, after five acting nominations and one nomination as producer of best picture nominee Wolf of Wall Street.

He thanked his director and co-star Tom Hardy for his "fierce talent on screen" and "friendship off screen" before campaigning for action to combat climate change, saying making The Revenant was "about man's relationship to the natural world".

"Climate change is real - it is happening right now," said DiCaprio. "It is the most urgent threat facing our species, and we need to work collectively together and stop procrastinating."

He asked the audience to "support leaders around the world who do not speak for the big polluters or the big corporations but who speak for all of humanity, for the indigenous people of the world, for the billions and billions of underprivileged people who'll be affected by this".

He added: "Let us not take this planet for granted. I do not take tonight for granted."

It is 22 years since he was first nominated for an Academy Award, having been nominated for best supporting actor for What's Eating Gilbert Grape.

Speaking to reporters after his win, DiCaprio said: "I feel very honoured, to share this has been an amazing experience, to sit there and talk about the film.

"I also got to talk about something I have been obsessed with - the environment and climate change - on a platform with hundreds of millions of people watching worldwide."

 

PM House to screen Sharmeen Obaid’s Oscar nominated documentary

Staff Reporter

ISLAMABAD: A premiere of Sharmeen Obaid-Chinoy’s documentary against honour killing, ‘A Girl in the River: The Price of Forgiveness,’ which has been nominated as one of five documentaries from across the globe in the ‘Best Documentary – Short’ subject category for the 88th Academy Awards, will be held at the Prime Minister House on Feb 22, said a statement issued from the PM’s office.

A Girl in the River, which is a joint production of Sharmeen Obaid Chinoy (SOC) Films and Home Box Office (HBO), follows the life of an 18-year-old girl who is a survivor of an honour killing attempt.

The announcement of the screening at PM House came after the Oscar-winning documentary maker met PM Nawaz at his official residence Monday.

PM Nawaz Sharif said honour killing was a critical issue and voiced his government’s determination to eradicate this practice from society.

Such customs and practices, he said, had nothing to do with Islam.

“Women are the most essential part of our society and I believe in their empowerment, protection and emancipation for achieving the shared goal of a prosperous and vibrant Pakistan,” PM Nawaz was quoted as saying in the statement.

He said social evils can be overcome through an effective partnership between the government and the civil society.

Chinoy, who won Pakistan’s first Academy Award for her documentary ‘Saving Face’ at the 84th Annual Academy Awards in 2012, thanked the PM for supporting her endeavors to end honour killings in the country and revive a progressive image of Pakistan.

 

 

2016 Golden Globe Awards: DiCaprio wins best actor award

Agencies

Leonardo DiCaprio nabbed the Golden Globe Award for best actor in a drama for his performance in The Revenant on Sunday night.

The actor beat out competition from Bryan Cranston (Trumbo), Will Smith (Concussion), Eddie Redmayne (The Danish Girl) and Michael Fassbender (Steve Jobs). 

“I want to share this award with all the First Nations peoples represented in this film and all the indigenous communities around the world,” he said during his acceptance speech, in which he gave a nod to director Alejandro González Iñárritu, who won Best Director for his turn. “It is time that we recognize your history and that we protect your indigenous lands from corporate interests,” DiCaprio continued.

This is DiCaprio’s eleventh nomination and third win. He first earned a trophy for Best Actor for The Aviator in 2005, followed by The Wolf of Wall Street in 2014. It bodes well for the Oscars next month, when DiCaprio is hoping to score his first Academy Award. 

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