Author | Journalist | Communications Specialist | Educator | Storyteller

in search of shiva

Hidden within the rising tide of Islamic puritanism and extremism in Pakistan there is another world of Islamic religiosity which does not look towards the Middle East for its religious identity but is instead rooted in the cultural beliefs of South Asia. Comprising traditions that have their roots in the antiquity of the Indus Valley Civilization, it finds expression in shrines of phallic offerings, sacred animals and sacred trees. In the backdrop of economic development and rising extremism, these shrines exist as an anomaly and are increasingly at risk of being eroded. Growing connectivity between rural and urban areas further threatens the distinctiveness of these shrines and religious traditions.

In Search of Shiva documents these religious traditions and studies how they have survived over the years and are now adapting to the increasingly rigid religious climate in Pakistan.


Search of Shiva in the alleys of Pakistan. SBS Hindi. August 9, 2017.

Tales of temples & pangs of partition. February 11, 2017.

In search of Shiva in Pakistan. The Tribune. August 14, 2016.

In search of Shiva. Early Times. May 17, 2016.

This ancient land. Dawn. May 8, 2016.

Given the state that Pakistan. Dawn. May 8, 2016.

Mor Pankh in the land of the pure. Asian Age. April 23, 2016.

A journey into Pakistan’s syncretic past. Asian Age. April 13, 2016.

Following the faith. The Hindu. April 9, 2016.

Muslims Offer Phallic Offerings For Fertility at this Shrine in Pakistan. Huff Post. March 14, 2016.

A history of religious coexistence. The News. March 13, 2016.

Talking Partition, Punjabi folklore. Express Tribune. March 13, 2016.

‘Partition was product of crystallisation of religious identities’. The News. March 12, 2016.

‘Religious practices were reinterpreted after partition’. Dawn. March 12, 2016.

Is Celebrating Love Not Part of Islamic Culture? Dawn. February 17, 2016.

Is Celebrating Love Not Part of Islamic Culture? Huff Post. February 15, 2016.

Pakistani newspapers tend to censor my writing much more than Indian newspapers. Mid-day. February 13, 2016.

Searching for Shiva in Pakistan. Civil Society online. February 8, 2016.

‘Two-Nation theory fails culturally’. Tehelka. February 2, 2016.

An Islamic revival among urban Pakistani women. January 28, 2016.

Incidents of intolerance not new to Pakistan. The Economic Times. January 4, 2016.

In Search of Shiva. Sanskriti.

Pakistan’s Sufi dervishes, Digambar Jain monks and Udasi Sadhus. Sutra Journal. January 2016.

Photo Credit: Rida Arif, Samra Noori, Maryam Altaf, Bilal Ejaz and Haroon Khalid

Close Bitnami banner