Thursday, January 29, 2009

Obituary: Demise of Dawn's Review

Obituaries are usually written for men or for good organizations, or popular restaurant joints. Or maybe for papers which have lasted 50 or so years, a long time by any measurement. Seldom, if ever, are they written for parts of national paper. I am breaking the tradition.

For me Review has been much more that a simple, A-4 sized mid-week, mag. In fact, first it was Tuesday Review and since that time I have been associated with it. My best memories of The Review are of a time when it carried my photographs of Karakoram Highway, my first ever photographs to be published in any paper. And I didn't knew that until I searched my name at, which returned my article on 1st page. That was Thursday, 17th Feb, 2005, and interestingly that day's Dawn to my home did not carry Review copy. Perhaps it had been stolen mid-way; perhaps my akhbar-walla (newspaper man) had forgotten to insert it. Perhaps. But as luck would have it, I got to know it before the paper went to dustbins - of my friend Syed Taha Ahmed. I later went to his home and brought the copy. It was a proud moment and my good mother commented that the photographs really looked good. I reminded her that she had in fact viewed them many times over. On which she told me that photographs published in paper look drastically better than when viewed on computer screen.

Dawn announced today (must I say suddenly) in its front page that it is finally closing down Review and hashing it with Sunday Images. Which effectively means that the edition of 22nd January, 2009, was the last of its kind - and that it must be preserved for posterity. It is fitting then that my feature on Kunri titled, 'SPICE CITY: Hot and happening', was published in this issue. Four days ago (25th Jan, 2009) when I had emailed Review editor why the emails were being returned, I was give the following reply, 'Thank you for your contribution, however we're discontinuing the photo feature for a while.' The bombshell about the demise of Review would fall today, or so it was destined.

As a measure of protest, I am cancelling my subscription of Thursday's Dawn to my house. No need for Dawn if Review is dead.

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