Our apology to LUBP wallas

Raza Rumi

PTH apologises to LUBP its editors, authors and readers for the indiscretions and thoughtless (and in some cases unacceptable) comments from some of us.

I have been meaning to write this post for the past few days. The delay took place due to my hectic travel schedule as well as the existential shock that came in the wake of the recent exchange of unpleasant and unfortunate words between our blogzine and the fiery LUBP/criticalppp blog. The disagreements and emotional arguments led to bad blood between two internet platforms which are on the same side of the political spectrum. If the disagreement had remained within civility, this unconditional apology would not have been needed. It is being rendered because we at PTH feel that excesses in terms of language have been committed from some of us.

Having said so, we also regret some of the posts and comments at LUBP especially in terms of ascribing motives of all sorts. In general, I avoid reacting to comments about me but some of them were unwarranted. My support for Sherry Rehman is not linked to a person or a motive but an unflinching belief in democratic norms which cannot be compromised due to partisan interests or priorities. My other colleagues here at PTH were shocked at the aspersions that were cast on them. One should refrain from name calling just on the basis of disagreements.

At the same time, we are cognizant of the ugliness of the exchanges and agree that some of the responses were downright inappropriate. We regretfully state that defence of a particular position should be worded in a language that is intellectually engaging and remains within the bounds of civility. Obviously some of us, in their zeal to defend themselves, failed.

PTH takes responsibility and offers an unconditional apology to all but particularly to editor Ms Sarah Khan. As a common friend between the two blogs has rightly pointed out that PTH and LUBP have a lot in common and share a similar vision for a democratic, tolerant and secular Pakistan.

At PTH we are not too well-organised. Perhaps, this is a gap that we need to address. Experience such as this one has taught us a lesson or two. We will surely take corrective steps. Of course, we value and welcome disagreements even amongst us – debate is vital for a plural and democratic culture. But we have to set civilised boundaries of a discourse.

Let’s hope that we bury the hatchet and move on.


Filed under Blogging, Pak Tea House

34 responses to “Our apology to LUBP wallas

  1. Anwar

    Raza, you certainly are a gentleman… Best wishes.

  2. Raza Raja

    As a c0 editor of Pak Tea House I echo the sentiments expressed in this post. Moreover an apology shows that we are ready to move forward and would like our partner blog also to do the same.

    Let’s bury the hatchet and move forward.


    Raza Raja

  3. D Asghar

    @Raza Rumi Bhai,

    Although I only have been around for “Jumma Jumma 8 days”, I echo what Anwar Bhai and Raza Raja Bhai have said. I dont even know what the conflict is and frankly, I am glad that I do not.

    But you are a thorough gentleman and a good mentor.

    Best Regards.

  4. Former PTH fan

    Raza, apologizing for bad language is fine and proper. But I am disappointed that you have not only condoned the systematic politics of character assassination by LUBP and Sarah Khan but you actually have supported it b saying you agree with it.

    YLH got emotional like always but at least he spoke on principle, you hAve succumbed to LUBPs and Sarah Khans politics of blackmail. Maybe If you had condemned her systematic accusations and character assassination of some of our most honorable citizens and her baseless accusations on anyone she disagrees with, maybe then your post would have sounded principled. Right now you just defend yourself and declare that all the other character assassinations (as long as they are not on you) are not just OK but are examples of the ‘vision’ of a ‘tolerant’ Pakistan. SHAMEFUL!

    There is nothing tolerant about LUBP or Sarah Khan. Remember always that if you chose to remain silent when they cone for others, there will be no one left to speak for you when they come for you. And they will. That is just the way facism works.

    Goodbye my friend. Good bye PTH.

  5. Raza Raja

    dear Former PTH fan

    I am reproducing this excrept from the above post

    “Having said so, we also regret some of the posts and comments at LUBP especially in terms of ascribing motives of all sorts. In general, I avoid reacting to comments about me but some of them were unwarranted. My support for Sherry Rehman is not linked to a person or a motive but an unflinching belief in democratic norms which cannot be compromised due to partisan interests or priorities. My other colleagues here at PTH were shocked at the aspersions that were cast on them. One should refrain from name calling just on the basis of disagreements”

    Raza has also pointed out what LUBP also did. Apology is for the language.

  6. Nadeem


    Once again, you have show grace and dignity by apologising to LUBP, Although the post of Ms. Sarah was not something to agree with but language used against her using PTH’s name was worrying.

    Same is happening on PTH as well, expressing view is one thing while bully, abusive language and downright arrogance in wake of editorial powers is another.

    As you have realised that fact, I wish you take corrective measures, as it was not only matter of your repute but also a concern for your readers and contributors as well.

    Best wishes and hope that two platforms can contribute positively.

  7. Rashid Aurakzai

    Thank You Raza Bhai.

    This is what was needed and expected of you and you have shown big heart.


  8. Farid

    Instead of just apologizing to LUBP, you should apologize to many other folks who were abused by your editor for just disagreeing with him.

    An editor’s comments represent the policy of the magazine. Your blog should own up to all the abuses your editor hurled on many folks.

  9. no-communal

    My comment may be irrelevant here, but I think Yaseer, although a bit rough on the edges, is overall a great guy. I would love to have a beer with him someday.

  10. Chote Miyan

    Now, now, don’t get carried away just because he had kind words for Vidyasagar..

  11. no-communal


    I knew if you saw my post that’s exactly what you would say. But it’s not about that. Without YLH, PTH is less colorful. And about the beer, I am sincere.

  12. Chote Miyan

    Great minds thinks alike. I agree with your remark about the colorful part. I am not sure about the beer, though; he probably prefers bitter coffee.

  13. @Raza Rumi

    I thank you and sincerely appreciate your reconciliatory post. I too apologize for any unintended offence caused to you or your team in the course of recent events.

    I agree that LUBP and PTH stand side by side on several issues including with respect to our stance on secularism, religious extremism and democracy.

    I also repeat that despite these similarities, there are also certain differences of opinion, interpretation and policy between the two blogs. For example, we don’t support a PPP minus Zardari formula which is suggested by at least one or two of your team members. However, we believe that such differences provide us an opportunity for healthy debate in a civilized manner.

    On the Sherry Rehman episode, I really like your op-ed in the Express Tribune, however, I would have refrained from signing an unusual statement (co-signed by Hamid Mir and Muhammad Malick) which contained certain unsubstantiated charges against the PPP (in particular the part about 350 armed goons / terrorists). This is, nevertheless, my personal opinion.

    I understand that some of the PTH editors were displeased with one (or two) posts at LUBP on the above episode. However, you will appreciate that we also cross-posted at LUBP as a headline post at least two posts written by two PTH editors in direct criticism of the LUBP’s stance. This means that we respect freedom of speech and are open to criticism.

    In the end, let me reiterate my respect for you and the PTH. In my personal view, PTH is the only blog which is closest to the LUBP vision and ideals. We must remain united against Islamofascists and the apolitical chattering class.

    Yet, we are two different blogs, and the difference of opinion is most likely to emerge on several issues in the future too. It is my hope that such differences will be tolerated and debated in a healthy way.

    Yes, let’s move on…

  14. no-communal

    My comment has nothing to do with the LUBP-PTH conflict, which I know very little about.

    Actually, I can understand Yaseer’s outbursts against us Indians. Being from West Bengal, which has now lost its former shine, I get agitated if someone from Gujarat flaunts their success. Especially if he also puts us down as well. My outbursts then are just an expression of my own frustration. So in that sense I don’t mind very much YLH’s outbursts against us.

  15. I appreciates RR’s post and hope for a great relation between LUBP and PTH. Let’s move….

  16. Dear PTH friends
    Though I have asked Abdul to speak on behalf of us, as the founder of LUBP to this apology by Raza Rumi and his team of editors.
    And he has responded to it.
    On my personal note, I have no complaints from you. And also have responded to the whole issue in my comments on your post in response to Qudsia’s post.
    As here’s the link

    My apologies to all of you too in any way responsible for this whole unpleasant episode…..

  17. amar

    Using decent language is good in the long run. One who uses indecent language may think of himself as a brave hero withering the storm etc. – but in the long run that makes his case blackmailable even by dubious persons.

    If you write the most true thing in an indecent language then you are doing a big disservice to truth.

  18. bciv

    @Abdul Nishapuri

    many thanks for another of your kind thoughts and gestures.

    For example, we don’t support a PPP minus Zardari formula which is suggested by at least one or two of your team members. However, we believe that such differences provide us an opportunity for healthy debate in a civilized manner.

    to start precisely such a debate without much delay, the opinion unfavourable of mr. zardari expressed by a voter, even if a ppp supporter, cannot be equated to the establishment pushing an extra-constitutional minus-zardari formula.

    the voter will use nothing other than the ballot box to try and bring about the change he desires. that precisely is the right that all we democrats profess to protect to our utmost. it is entirely irrelevant whether such a voter also happens to be a PTH editor.

    if some within the establishment have got it in for mr zardari, a voter who happens not to support mr zardari can only be expected to stand for the constitution and democracy and not feign admiration for him. it is for mr zardari and his supporters to put in the extra effort to try and counter the enemies within the establishment and have their own capability of setting the agenda, if not take the initiative totally away from the media. voters cannot be expected to do anything other than follow their conscience, based on perceptions which in turn are based on everything that is put out their by all who can, as best as they can.

  19. Nadeem

    There are less than 150,000 readers of English papers and none on the blog got more traffic than a 1000 clicks per day in Pakistan.

    This is simply an intellectual discourse, nothing to do with masses decision. Jamshed Dasti wins despite of blog and TV anchors campaign.

    Real life in Pakistan is far away from what we talk on blogs. Still, some people want to get in to barbed Embassy of United States and use their English writing skills for profits.

    Reaction also remains limited – have MQM or PPP followers ever been influenced? Opinion makers always want to plant ‘opinion’ although it never got in to masses. As limited is audience as quick is process of exposure when sympathies are traded for a bottle or an envelop!


    I want to ask :” (a) Who are the LUBP wallas?; (b)why is it not possible to require that those who contribute to PTH or LUBP (or whatever), their names (as given … subjection to additional sanctions for impersonation, fraud and obtaining editorial crfedit under false pretences) as well as e-mail addresses are automatically published; sothat quacks and ill-bred foul-mouths become a bit more exposed to treatment and further vulnerablility. (c) due to management constraints it is perhaps tolerable that something blogged is published instantly, but there should be some editorial control functionalized atleast within 24-hours of publication sothat sheer filth is not liberally spread. Idiots playing doctors, psychologists, psychiatrists, language-seers, and morality overseers, deranged attention-seeker, rubbish peddlars are the reprehensible scums (peddlars of mediocrity and sycophancy) of our society.

    Recently, I encountered (the Lot has now disappeared like the foam of The Fountain urine) self-styled (albeit designer) “Art Critic” (Neem Hakeem Khattrah-e Jaan), and someone (supposedly from India) styling himself/herself as “Second Hand Tyre” (the pathetic lot it seems was the same bloke subbing as Others). Utterly Nauseating. This country will come out of the gutter if there is accountability across the board with no exception, no immunity, no impunity, no favouritism. And no turf control. Hopefully, that Day Shall Dawn and not meet nascent extinction…

    Recent medical research has proven that those who do not move on…. die earlier (the sooner the better)…. extinction without attaining any distinction whatsoever.

  21. Dear Friends (esp Nishapuri, Ali etc.)
    Many thanks for your positive comments. Let us bury the unsavoury developments and move on. Yes, we are different platforms and have differing points of view on many issues.
    Debate is important and we assure you that we will respect your right to disagree. In the same way, we are also keen to protect our right of expression.
    Most importantly, people and platforms who believe in a democratic Pakistan should try and work together as far as possible.
    Pakistan’s progressive opinion is bitterly divided and splintered. Let’s not divide our energies and restrain ourselves.
    In the larger picture, individuals are not important – issues, ideas and visions are!!

  22. K-

    I’ll request YLH not to get emotional and do not to leave PTH.

    Let us not give a chance to common adversaries to celebrate !!

  23. no fan

    without YHL, PTH is just any other blog.

  24. Bade Miyan

    I have no idea what happened, but I request you not to get emotional and leave the blog, whatever the reason maybe. We have had our differences and some testy exchanges but most of us recognize that you are one of the few who doesn’t speak with a forked tongue.
    As the Bard once said, “thou shalt not escape calumny”.

  25. Raza Raja

    Just a clarification. The above post is not from Yasir.
    Someone is just trying to have fun. Yasir is with PTH.

  26. Humanity

    .. supports YLH unequivocally 🙂

  27. no-communal

    Huh, now the plot thickens. I must say this is what is so lovable about Pakistan. It’s always a whodunit in the end.

  28. FAKE YLH

    hey, i was just settling some old grouse with ylh. Just having 30 min of fun(i didnt even hide my ip)

  29. FAKE YLH

    raza, i didnt post as old pth fan
    i am not that vehla afterall and never do sockpuppetting
    you deleted ,i guess, a real fan’s posts by deleting old pth fan’s post

  30. Bade Miyan

    I guess it’s CIA this time, or maybe RAW.

  31. About time! I was seriously considering telling my students NOT to ever use PTH again after that drama.

  32. PMA

    Raza Bhai,

    You are a true gentleman. You should be an officer too. (just kidding). But it is true that without you PTH would be meaningless. I am with you all the way.

  33. YLH

    A lot of people have asked me and “reprimanded” me for the language I used against LUBP last week. I used a language they understand: they have a history of abuse against other people’s families. I have provided evidence and links on their website under the same article which has been cross-posted.

    I also wish to point out that I unconditionally apologised before the LUBP people launched a vitriolic campaign of lies against me trying to taint my reputation.

    Thank you.