Category Archives: Published

April 04

Rickshaw Diary

Published at While returning home one night from a reporting trip, I found myself in a rickshaw that was going so fast that I had to hold on to the tinsel wrapped poles for dear life. M.A. Jinnah Road, the road that forms the main artery of the city, was a blur of headlights […]

March 28

Pilgrims of the Indus Highways: Photo Series for the Caravan Serai: Kabul in Karachi Festival 2016

This series was shown, as part of a photography exhibition, at the Caravan Serai: Kabul in Karachi festival held in Karachi in March 2016.  “Adda is the meeting-place of idlers and pleasure seekers. In the Platts dictionary, adda is defined as the place or shed where palanquin bearers, coolies and carters assemble. It is also […]

January 28

A Hindu Pilgrimage in Pakistan

  Published in Roads and Kingdoms “Arri Allah.”  My grandfather’s face was anguished, his thick white eyebrows raised, when he saw the tiny statuette of the goddess Durga that I had taken from his friend’s house. “My god, Annie, what have you done?” I had no answer, but even as a five year old I […]

January 24

A Railway Pilgrimage in Pakistan

Published at Roads & Kingdoms. Making my way through the traffic-choked streets of old Karachi, I arrive at the railway station minutes before the 10 p.m. Khyber Mail is due to leave. On the platform, red cloth bags filled with letters and packages are being loaded onto the train. Porters are waiting in line to […]

December 19

A Flour Seller’s Story in the Aftermath of Peshawar’s Army Public School Attack

Published at The Caravan  Altaf Hussain runs a small flour shop in the heart of Saddar Bazaar, part of a town on the outskirts of Peshawar. I met Hussain quite by chance. It was in December exactly a year ago. I was there with a colleague for a couple of days, and we were roaming […]

November 28

Mosque & Memory

Published on The Imaam’s voice came over the mosque speaker system: “Some of us came to the United States with just two bags.” It was the first Friday of the Islamic New Year and the Khutba (the Friday sermon) at the Bosnian Islamic Center in the Queens borough of New York was about the […]

September 25

Feather Report–The Legendary Pigeon Breeder of Liliani

By Annie Ali Khan | 1 September 2013   MIAN NAZIR AHMAD SAT ON A CHARPOY on the terrace of his three-storey house, dressed in a light brown shalwar kameez; a black woollen hat pulled over his head bore the logo of the New York Police Department. Behind him was a row of rooms lined with wooden coops, filled with […]

February 22

In 2013, Literature Festival Provides ‘Healing Touch’ for Troubled Karachi

KARACHI — It sounded like a bomb blast. The violent rumble rent the air, drowning out the moderator’s words. Gasps and startled voices filled the auditorium, finally giving way to murmurs. Torsos bent away from the windows straightened up again as everyone realized that there was no smoke or rubble, no violent jolt or smell […]

November 24

Zakia Parveen, a Pakistani Acid-Attack Survivor, Visits New York for the Women of the Year Awards

When Glamour honored Sharmeen Obaid-Chinoy at the Women of the Year Awards earlier this month, she took the stage with one of her heroes, Zakia Parveen— a central protagonist of Obaid-Chinoy’s Oscar-winning documentary Saving Face. Zakia’s quiet confidence, evident in each frame of the film she’s in, was just as clear as the 40-year-old acid […]

October 16

Fair & Lovely–Marie Claire U.S. November 2012

I WAS 9 WHEN MY FATHER, an airline pilot, transferred from Karachi, Pakistan, with its chaotic hustle and bustle, to Islamabad. I loved to ride my bicycle along its elegant, calm, tree-lined streets and parks, but I began to notice that the time I spent outside was darkening my brown complexion. While my natural color […]