What was it like to grow up in Pakistan in the 90s​?

80s and 90s in Pakistan


Gohar Latif
4 minutes read

Late 90s were the true demonstration of that era in which old concepts related to media, technology, education and other social norms were drastically changed. Some things changed with every coming year and in the last few decades of the century, specific things represented the childhood of many of us. The routines were the same, waking up early in the morning and getting dressed for school. While waiting for the school transport we used to watch cartoons on STN (Shalimar Television Network) or PTV (Pakistan Television Network). Namely the leading channels of that time for kids of young age.

Do you claim to be a kid who grew up in Pakistan in the 90s? Then you might know how different it was to be one of those because that was the time when the young generation was in the process to absorb both sides of the century. By both sides we mean, technology was still under development. People were learning how to use new technical sides of everything. The times, when most of the work was done manually as computers were not something that everyone knew about. When kids played outside in the gardens fearlessly, when social life was real, and not on social media as people used to meet in person and talk.

New waves of change were in commencement with the touch of old times that could be easily seen in the way people lived.These were the times we used Dial-up connections for using the internet and waited a long time to connect and visit various websites on the internet. The times we used MSN and Yahoo messengers.

Swat Cats, Jungle Book, Captain Planet, Richie Rich, Johnny Quest, Duck Tales, Tom & Jerry, Dexter’s Laboratory, Power Puff Girls, Ed n Eddy, Flintstones, The Jetsons, Tale Spin, Sponge bob, Samurai Jack, Scooby Doo and Johny Bravo were the cartoons lined-up to watch.

A couple of things which only people from the 90s would remember and still cherish are the TV shows like, Hum Paanch (Pa-Pa-PAANCH!), Tu Tu Main Main, The Legends of the Hidden Temple, Small Wonder, Disney Hour Show (with the host Vishal) and Ainak Wala Jin, which was the most exciting of all.

Lets discuss the shows that we actually enjoyed then.

Hum Paanch (Pa-Pa-PAANCH!) was an Indian sitcom that first aired in 1995. It ran for four years until 1999. The series is regarded as one of the all-time favorite comedies. Tu Tu Main Main was also a comedy series which aired on STAR Plus (after 1996). The title Tu Tu Main Main is a phrase in Hindi meaning arguments and bickering, that was between a daughter in law and her mother in law, rings a bell?

Do you know: The idea of establishing a media and television industry was conceived in late 1956 and created by the privately set up national education commission, with the support of President Ayub Khan. While it was finally Launched in November 26, 1964. (Source: History Facts Knowledge)

Who among us does not remember Legends of the Hidden Temple, an American action adventure game show for children that aired from 1993 to 1995 in its first-run and through 1998 in reruns. The program centered on a temple that was “filled with lost treasures protected by mysterious Mayan temple guards”. Kirk Fogg hosted the program and served as the teams’ guide while Dee Bradley Baker announced and voiced a talking Olmec Head who “knows the secrets behind each of the treasures in his temple”. Six teams of two children competed to retrieve one of the historical artifacts in the temple by performing physical stunts and answering questions based on History, Mythology, and Geography.

Last but not the least, remember the genie called Nastoor who was sent by the emperor of genies from the Caucasus Mountains to our earth, along with his friend named Zakoota, for the treatment of his eyesight problems. There he met a daring young boy who loved fantasies. The boy took him to the doctor who prescribed power glasses. He met magicians, witches, other genies, space people and real life characters. These interactions gave birth to a very interesting story line which entailed comedy, magic, morals and learning for children. The show was aired by the name of Ainak Wala Jin.

For most of us these shows were like the part of our childhood routine and something that we enjoyed with families, the laughter therapy was enough to bond, unlike today’s generation who would never understand the essence of all this. The meaning of “Old is Gold” has just been taken to a next level.

Cheers to everyone who can understand and feel what was it like to grow up in Pakistan in the 90s. Happy memory reviving to all the Pakistanis out there.

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