Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Pappu pass ho gaya!

The Pakistani ability to tickle the funny bone has seen us through many lows. We knew we’d get a good dose of humour in the land of Moeen Akhtar, but such huge doses…

Younis Butt is the greatest of them all. He launched “Channel T” (‘T’ for Taliban, of course) on Geo TV’s comedy show “Hum Saab Umeed Se Hain” and had two Talibs speaking Urdu with a Pushtu accent. “The opinion of women will not be included on this channel,” they announce. In the next segment, the “silent segment”, a woman is scheduled to sing but cannot under the Taliban regime – so she sits, covered from head-to-toe, with her back to the audience for an hour!

Like all other popular Pakistani TV channels, there is a food show and a talk show on Channel T. The talk show is called “Aaj Muslim Khan Ke Saath”, a reference to the once ubiquitous Taliban spokesman Muslim Khan from Swat valley (now in the custody of security forces); and in the food show, men are advised to learn cooking from a male host and then pass on the skills to women who cannot be expected to watch a man cook! (Get a taste of Channel T here.)

We have some other Pakistani favourites too, like columnist Nadeem F. Paracha, and some others who are not-so-known. For instance, Khuroum Ali Bukhari, who posted on a blog that Pakistan Interior Minister Rehman Malik had found “evidence” that 2010 would be a year of peace. “Well, we have evidence that 2010 is the year of peace for Pakistan, but it isn’t certain. We will need more evidence, so I am ordering an inquiry into 2010.”

Bukhari also has cricketer-turned-politician Imran Khan say: “…You see, the Taliban are really quite sensitive souls, they breathe and eat just like you and me. But don’t get me wrong, I’m not pro-Taliban. I’m pro-progress. We’ve just got to separate the good guys from the bad guys, that’s all.”

Another favourite of ours is Tazeen Javed. Her vision of using a ‘halal’ browser, or a more recent post on “Hazrat” Zaid Hamid had us in splits. Hamid, in case you didn’t know, is the man-with-a-red-cap who has perfected the art of finding India at the root of all ills and problems in Pakistan.

We also keep going back to “Maila Times”, which is Pakistan’s thespoof.com. Their spoof statement by Rehman Malik following reports of the death of Taliban chief Baitullah Mehsud in a US drone attack read: “By the grace of Allah, I can confirm one week after the strikes all previous non-confirmations of confirmations by us confirming the death of Baitullah and the non-confirmations by various officials confirming their non-confirmation about the strike and subsequent confirmations…we can now 95 per cent confirm that we have confirmed his death.”

But, of course, Younis Butt is the king. The spoof on the popular Cadbury’s commercial “Pappu pass ho gaya” is one of our personal favourites. The spoof had Pakistan People’s Party workers celebrating the striking down by the Supreme Court of the rule that made it mandatory for persons contesting elections to be graduates. The rib-tickling spoof on President Asif Ali Zardari has an aging Pappu who cannot contain his glee at passing the exam.

P.S. You gotta love this Zardari Shut Up remix too!!


  1. Wish you had linked to these bloggers & their blogposts as well.

  2. Being an Indian I could not agree more...Especially Tazeen she is a super star!

    The queen of Pakistani wit! She has been called witty princess in the media-Tazeen writes at

  3. This is funny. Loved the woman singer bit.

  4. Anonymous, Tazeen blogs at http://tazeen-tazeen.blogspot.com/; but "Halal Online" was for Dawn.com.
    Khuroum Ali Bukhari's post was also for Dawn.com

    Karishma, we call her the "princess of wit" :)

    Mayank, did you see the link? My favourite is "Birthday Bombs"..

  5. Loved the silent segment. :-D. Silence can be such an eloquent form of protest sometimes

  6. Rupa, true :)

    Moinz, thank you. There are more links on youtube, I am sure you'd like them too.

  7. Hey 'Me',
    I am sure you know your blog is kind of a rage on twitter, and i landed here through a friend's recco only.

    Very well written...almost intriguing. Pakistan has been hammered in our minds as the ultimate 'other', and to get such kind of holistic-view journals out of Pakistan, that too written with on-the-face un-bias is very refreshing. Thought provoking in the most subtle ways, and enriching in the most obvious.

    And talking of Pakistani humor - i have been a huge fan for a long time. Indian Express used to publish a column sometimes, by an unnamed socialite auntie (refereing to Imran as Imroo!) and that was simply outstanding.

    And at the risk of looking like a 'marketing type', here's an online satire show i write: http://jayhind.buzzintown.com/full-episodes/ I think you'll be interested.

  8. The Daily Tamasha, I'm quite a fan of that "auntie" too; her column on Imran here is called "Im the Dim". Hope to write about her sometime soon.
    Sure will check out your satire show. Thanks for reading, liking.

  9. Yes, 'Im the dim' it is. What writing!

    I worked on a show for Indian Television with Pakistan's 'famous' cross-dresser anchor Ali Begum (I was told he is quite famous there) and he (she) had an equally crazy, faux high-society humor. Unfortunately, the show didn't have enough scope to exploit her original thoughts. (I digress.)

    Keep writing...

  10. Begum Nawazish Ali is good and famous too. Checked the link, good going :)
    Keep reading!

  11. The shut up remix somehow doesnt match up to the actual event. Its the funniest thing

  12. sometimes when we are compiling a software, it dosen't work, so we to check every function by step we output on screen " pappu no1 pas hogaya" "pappu no2 pass hogaya" ek din Gora boss asks us what the hell is this pappu pass hogaya in the output....we didnt realize that client got a software with pappu pass hogaya on the screen.. hehehe dammn it was so funny couldnt stop laughing
    but it was our lucky charm so we decided to put on in every software we test...

  13. check out this blog too. http://bositiveneuj.blogspot.com/
    quite funny