Few days back Junaid Khan invited me to be a judge on the panel of Pakistan’s First Blog Writing Competition organized by Pro Pakistan. I smiled at few sentences he added while describing criteria for a judge that included “their knowledge and expertise”. That hardly suits me (apologies from other judges). I have been familiar with Blog Carnivals but this was quite unique idea to me ; i accepted the invitation to become a judge. Since then an interesting exchange of correspondence started between me and organizers regarding several issues relating to Pakistan’s First Blog Writing Competition.
Since i know judges who used to judge school Debate competitions, literary pieces, Stage Plays etc etc and then on TV, judges evaluating performances on reality shows. I found judging a writing competition quite exciting experience for it is being held first time in Pakistani Blogsphere( why don’t we call it Blogistan because Pakistani bloggers altogether have made it). Judging is difficult but i was quite satisfied seeing the list of other prestigious judges including:
Dr. Awab Alvi: Internet Users know him as Teeth Maestro, A dentist by profession and a blogging guide for Pakistani Blogosphere. He’s been blogging since July 2004, and is one of the few people in Pakistan who initiated the political blogging in Pakistan.
Mr. Mansoor Adenwala: Mansoor used to write on blogspot and then moved to Word of Mansoor. He’s one of the top tech contributors at Green & White as well. A software engineer [CMMI advisor] by profession, and a blogging geek.
Ghazala Khan: A dynamic Pakistani blogger whose name comes first in mind when anyone talks about Pakistani Spectator.
Junaid Khan: Is the co founder and leading blogger at Pro Pakistan, It was his idea to create a web space representing true image of Pakistan to the rest of the world, and he did so.
Qurratulain Akhtar: She is a writer in herself, relies on observing and staying quiet for most of the time, and speaks up at times only. She has hidden potentials in herself that according to her remained slumbering for several years but she awakened those.
I felt it was a kind of idea that can fill the vacuum Pakistani Bloggers find in shape of rewards and award. I always believe and most of readers would deem it wise to agree that everyone aspires to be acknowledged and recognized for what growth oriented role he/she plays. Even a single pat can boost the morale; here i would want to appreciate Pro Pakistan Team who not only have coined an idea that is quite inspiring and also an door opener for several bigger events like this. I was quite surprised when the manager Public Relation of Pro Pakistan Ms Qurratulain told me that they solely are the sponsors of this event; No NGO, No Youth; IT; Education Ministry and Not even Private sector was contacted. She added, “actually Rubab, we wanted to have a strong base.. i mean we wanted to show first that what can we do in our capacity… and then we can be in good position to have sponsorships for bigger events”.
On serious note i find this competition a dire need of Pakistan’s Blogsphere(Blogistan); and i think it was long awaited as to i personally started getting feed back from FaceBook friends since the day Pro Pakistan has announced on FaceBook. I am sure several hundred bloggers would have pulled their socks up uptill now. It has created required buzz on Pakistan’s Blogsphere. A ray of hope touched me softly when i felt Pro Pakistan is actually laying basis for an Army of writers who can fight on a very effective platform of Blogsphere. When people are really sick of biased and tiled versions of information coming from conglomerated media, blogs are reflecting common man’s point of view ( i call it weapon) and that has access to whole world. Mr. Junaid Khan has just rubbed up a point; i forgot while thinking Pro Pakistan saying,
“I am sure all of us will act as a one team of Pakistani bloggers on this event and make it a success. As we always say, Pro Pakistan is a site which is owned by every Patriotic Pakistani and hence we consider the success of this event as a success of every Pakistani who are working for a better Pakistan.”
Ms. Qurattulain told me that Team of Pro Pakistan was quite inspired by the First Bloggers Meetup and response it generated; so they decided to motivate the bloggers in this way. I wish them a good luck from tomorrow this competition is starting and Pakistan Times is all along in their effort to encourage and promote Pakistani Bloggers on every level.