This decade has been an eventful one for Pakistan; whether it is about the socio-political dynamics of the country or the economic structure, a lot has changed over these ten years. We powered through terrorist attacks, target killings, political instability and climate change but emerged as one of the most attractive tourist destinations of the world in 2019.
Here are some of the highlights of this decade so far:
2010 – Floods in Pakistan
In Late July 2010, Pakistan was struck by the worst floods in the past 80 years. Resulting from heavy rains in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, Baluchistan, Sind and Punjab regions, it affected one-fifth of the land in Pakistan and took over 1700 lives. The total economic impact of these floods may have been as much as US$43 billion in property and livelihood damage. Within the same month, the ill-fated Airblue Flight 202 crashed into the Margalla Hills, killing all 152 people on board.
2011 – Osama Bin Laden was found in Abbottabad
In May of 2011, the US Navy Seals found and killed Osama Bin Laden, leader of the terrorist outfit Al-Qaeda, in Abbottabad. The raid was largely supported by the Americans and was welcomed by the United Nations, NATO, the European Union and a large number of official organizations.
2012 – Sharmeen Obaid Chinoy wins first Pakistani to ever win an Oscar
Pakistani filmmaker, journalist and activist Sharmeen Obaid Chinoy became the first Pakistani to be felicitated at the Academy Awards for Saving Face, her documentary on the reconstructive surgery of acid attack victims. She has gone on to win another Academy Award for her biographical film The Girl in the River in 2016.
2012 – Malala Yousafzai was shot by Taliban
Later in 2012, Malala Yousafzai, an unsuspecting 14-year old blogger and activist, was shot in the head on her way back from school in Swat Valley. Yousafzai was vocal about her strong displeasure regarding the ban on girls’ education in Swat. The Taliban were quick to claim responsibility for the attack against Yousafzai, using the incident as a warning to other children who participate in “secular-minded” activities.
2013 – General Elections take place in Pakistan; Nawaz Sharif becomes Prime Minister
Amidst a series of terrorist attacks and general socio-political turmoil in the country, the Pakistan People’s Party was succeeded by the Pakistan Muslim League in forming a government. Nawaz Sharif was elected Prime Minister for the third time in three decades. In the same year, the famed General Raheel Shareef became the next Chief of Army Staff.
2014 – Aitzaz Hasan named Herald’s Person of the Year 2014
Aitzaz Hasan was a 15-year old Pashtun boy from Hangu District who lost his life preventing a suicide bomber from entering his school and saved the lives of over 2000 students. His bravado was awarded posthumously with the Sitara-e-Shujaat (Star of Bravery), a high civil award, by the government of Pakistan. He was later named Herald’s Person of the Year in 2014; which is given in recognition to individuals who have had a profound influence on the news and who embodied what was important about the year.
2014 – Malala Yousafzai wins Nobel Peace Prize
2014 was a proud year for Pakistan and its supremely talented youth. Malala Yousafzai, who championed the cause of female education in Pakistan, became the youngest winner of a Nobel Peace Prize in any field. The Award was shared by her and Kailash Satyarthi “for their struggle against the suppression of children and young people and for the right of all children to education”.
2014 – APS Peshawar Attack
The year ended on a somber note as six terrorist militants infiltrated Army Public School Peshawar and conducted one of the most heinous massacres in the history of the world, killing over 140 innocent students. Pakistan responded to the attacks by lifting its moratorium on the death penalty, intensifying the War in North-West Pakistan and authorizing military courts to try civilians through a constitutional amendment.
2015 – Zimbabwe Cricket Team tour of Pakistan
Post the infamous attack on the Sri Lankan international cricket team in 2009, the Zimbabwe Cricket Team toured Pakistan to play International Cricket Series. The T20 series kicked off in Gaddafi Stadium, Lahore. Tickets to both T20 matches were sold out within two days, with 60,000 people in attendance.
2016 – Pakistan Super League Season 1 took place
The first season of the super-hit cricket franchise Pakistan Super League took place in 2016 in the United Arab Emirates to an overwhelming response. Initially comprised of five independent teams; Karachi Kings, Lahore Qalandars, Peshawar Zalmi, Islamabad United and Quetta Gladiators, the PSL became a resounding success, reviving the cricket scene in Pakistan.
2016 – Amjad Sabri assassinated in targeted killing and Junaid Jamshed was killed in a plane crash
Pakistan lost two of its biggest musical icons in 2016. Acclaimed Sufi singer and qawwali maestro Amjad Sabri was shot dead by gunmen in a central Karachi neighbourhood, triggering an outpour of grief nationwide. Later that year, Junaid Jamshed, a musical legend turned cleric and philanthropist, was on board an ill-fated aircraft that crashed into a mountainside.
2017 – Pakistan won ICC Champions Trophy
Pakistan emerged victorious in the 8th ICC Champions Trophy, defeating age-old nemesis India by 180 runs, at The Oval. The margin of victory was the largest by any team in the final of an ICC ODI tournament in terms of runs.
2018 – Imran Khan becomes Prime Minister of Pakistan
In a historic moment, the populist leader Imran Khan was elected Prime Minister of Pakistan as Pakistan Tehreek-E-Insaf won the General Elections of 2018. This election witnessed the highest turnout of civilians coming out and voting for their preferred candidate in the General Assembly and National Assembly accordingly. Leaders from the previous government were sentenced to varying prison sentences in line with controversial corruption charges levied on them.
2019 – Test Cricket returns to Pakistan
As a wondrous decade nears closure, we see the return of Test Cricket in Pakistan after a whopping two decades. Karachi and Rawalpindi Stadiums saw frenzied fans flock to see their beloved teams battle it out on the pitch. It was a momentous occasion and Yayvo Tickets was proud to partner with PCB on the exclusive digital distribution of an unforgettable series.
So that was our round-up for 2019. Let us know what you think of our list. Here’s hoping for a momentous decade ahead!