FRONT PAGE (11-04-2014) FINAL_Layout 1 4/11/2014 12:39 AM Page 1
Nawaz urges for revival of Silk Road
Friday, 11 April, 2014 Jamadi-us-Sani 10, 1435 Rs 17.00 Vol IV No 282 16 Pages Karachi Edition
STORY ON PAGE 03
SC says constitution supreme, parliament can’t legislate against it STORY ON PAGE 03
EVEN NAWAZ CAN FALL VICTIM TO PPO, BILAWAL WARNS STORY ON PAGE 02
‘BACHELOR’ NARENDRA MODI ADMITS HE IS MARRIED STORY ON PAGE 04
DIFFERENCES EMERGE OVER GOVT’S TALKS STRATEGY
EGYPT STEPS UP CAMPAIGN TO CONTROL MOSQUES PAGE 02
TURKEY KEEPS YOUTUBE BLOCK DESPITE COURT RULINGS PAGE 04
Friday, 11 April 2014
differences emerge over govT’s TAlks sTrATegy while it has already released as many as 32 TTP operatives as a confidence-building measure (CBM). According to a source, the government is yet to demand the release of InterServices Intelligence (ISI) Brigadier (r) Tahir Masood while the Taliban have demanded the release of Aqeel alias Dr Usman. Dr Usman is a former member of the army’s medical corps who is on death row for orchestrating a suicide attack on the General Headquarters in Rawalpindi in 2009, while Brigadier Masood was kidnapped by militants around three years ago while he was serving as the head of the ISI’s Media Wing. Dr Usman’s hanging was put on hold only after TTP threats that in case of his hanging, the top leadership of the ruling party would be targeted. Though the government has yet not taken any decision over the recent de-
MILITARY SOURCES SAY GOVT HAS FREED 32 TALIBAN PRISONERS BUT HAS NOT EVEN ONCE SOUGHT A LIST OF ARMYMEN IN TALIBAN CUSTODY ISLAMABAD MIAN ABRAR
T appears that the former army chief’s indictment in a high treason case and preservation of the armed forces’ dignity and protection of the motherland are not the only issues on the Establishment’s mind, as Pakistan Today has learnt that the army is “unhappy” over the government’s “apologetic” approach towards peace talks with the Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) as well. After the expiry of ceasefire extension yesterday (April 10), also given a stalled dialogue process with the Taliban, the security concerns in the country are
rising faster than the mercury as the spring season bids farewell to the land of the pure. The nation has its fingers crossed and the government is silent. Sources privy to the khakis’ concerns tell Pakistan Today that the security establishment and the government seem “poles apart” over the ongoing Taliban peace talks mantra, with the army feeling that the country’s political leadership is sticking with its “apologetic” approach towards peace talks while the Taliban are pursuing a more “assertive” strategy. Sources say that the army is concerned over the government’s alleged failure in putting forward the demand for the release of the army’s abducted men,
mand by TTP, it has already “shaken” the armed forces’ leadership, the source said. FLAWED STRATEGY: The khakis, according to the source, are “unhappy” over Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PMLN) government’s “flawed strategy” for the dialogue process, with insiders claiming that despite the fact that “lines have been crossed by the TTP” in making demands, the government was unable to evolve a counter strategy. “Lists after lists from militants are being received by the government despite releasing 32 militants. However, no counter demands are being made from our side. Rather, the army is being quizzed by the government and details of detained terrorists are being sought,” the source added. The source said that the army leadership was concerned that the government has never sought a list of the abducted officials of the armed forces who have been
Govt’s Khawajas say criticism valid KHAWAJA ASIF DENIES HE USED STRONG LANGUAGE AGAINST ARMY ON PM’S ORDERS MONITORING DESK The two Khawajas of the Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) government – Khawaja Asif and Khawaja Saad Rafiq – on Thursday said that they stood by their statements regarding former army chief General (r) Pervez Musharraf but bore no grudge against the armed forces. While making a clear demarcation between the high treason case against General (r) Pervez Musharraf and Pakistan Army, Federal Minister for Defence Khawaja Asif said he valued the services of the Pakistan Army. While talking to a private TV channel, the defence minister said that his speech, which was being run on various TV channels, was the one he made eight years ago in the National Assembly and
egypT sTeps up cAmpAign To conTrol mosques CAIRO AGENCIES
The Egyptian government has stepped up a campaign to curb Muslim Brotherhood influence over mosques, saying it has licensed more than 17,000 state-approved clerics to give Friday sermons to stop places of worship falling "into the hands of extremists". The military-backed authorities have been trying to bring mosques under tighter control since the army toppled Mohamed Mursi of the Islamist Muslim Brotherhood last July after mass protests against his rule. All of the newly-approved clerics had been trained at Al-Azhar University, which is a respected center of Sunni Islamic learning, and institutions run by the ministry of religious endowments, according to a statement issued by the prime minister's office on Thursday. "That is to strengthen the ministry's supervision over all Egypt's mosques so that they do not fall into the hands of extremists and the unqualified" and to prevent mosques being used for "party or sectarian" purposes, it said.
KHAWAJA SAAD SAYS NO ONE CAN STOP HIM FROM CRITICISING DICTATORSHIP was being taken “out of context”. Asif had severely criticised the role of the army while speaking on the floor of the Lower House in 2006. The defence minister also denied that he had been asked to launch scathing attacks on the armed forces by Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif. “This notion is absolutely wrong. Why would the PM ask me to do such a thing when I represent the armed forces in the federal cabinet. I’ve been defending the armed forces’ in the missing persons case in the Supreme Court and will continue to defend them because it is my assignment. The media is trying to create misunderstandings between us and the army,” he said. The defence minister had recently told the National Assembly that while all state institutions protected their “dignity and honour”, parliament was
abducted by militants. “Take the case of Brigadier (r) Tahir Masood as an example. He was abducted in year 2011 but his family or relatives have yet not received any demand from the abductors. He had undergone an open heart surgery and was on medication. We don’t know whether he is alive or dead but what we know is that nobody cares about his release,” the source added. Asked whether the TTP had ever claimed responsibility for Brig Masood’s abduction, the source said that his name was mentioned only once in a threat from the TTP, stating that he along with others will be killed if their demands were not met by the government. “We have not heard of him since then,” the source added. Despite repeated attempts, Minister for Interior Chaudhry Nisar Ali Khan nor any other senior ministry official was available for comments on the issue.
AfghAn commAnder: cross-border TAlibAn AlliAnce growing sTronger CAMP THUNDER AGENCIES
supreme and all institutions were accountable to it. The statement came in wake of a statement by army chief General Raheel Sharif in which the latter had said that the armed forces would uphold their dignity in face of “undue criticism” on the institution. The exchange of veiled warnings had given rise to speculation that rifts were emerging between the government and army over a host of issues, especially the indictment of Gen Musharraf and the talks process with the Taliban.
SAAD DIGS IN: Meanwhile, Federal Minister for Railways Saad Rafique said that whatever he had stated about Gen Musharraf was “absolutely true” and there was no room for doubts in it. Talking to journalists at Rawalpindi Railway Station, the minister said that he stood courageously against dictatorship and remained firm on his stance against Musharraf. The minister said that nobody could stop him from criticising dictatorship.
Even Nawaz can fall victim to PPO, Bilawal warns MQM’S ALTAF HUSSAIN VOICES SIMILAR CONCERN, SAYS HIS PARTY WILL OPPOSE PPO TILL LAST MAN STANDING ISLAMABAD STAFF REPORT
Pakistan People’s Party (PPP) Chairman Bilawal Bhutto Zardari has warned that if the Protection of Pakistan Ordinance (PPO) is passed in its current form, a day will come when Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif will himself become its victim. Bilawal tweeted on Thursday, “If #PPO passes in its current form, one day PM NS will be arrested using it. I hope the Senate does the right thing and does not let it pass.” The controversial anti-terror law has become the talk of the town with opposition members saying it gives sweeping powers to security agencies to infringe
the fundamental rights of the citizens guaranteed under the Constitution. Opposition parties have vowed to stop the legislation from being passed into law without significant amendments. The Muttahida Qaumi Movement (MQM) has also slammed the legislation, tabling a resolution in the Sindh Assembly against it. “The MQM rejects the Protection of Pakistan Ordinance. We will continue to protest against this black law as long as our workers are alive,” MQM chief Altaf Hussain said in a statement. Meanwhile, Senator Farhatullah Babar of the Pakistan People’s Party (PPP) said that the bill was under the Senate review, and that his party will try to amend the law. He said that if the law is passed in its current shape, it will pro-
vide legal cover to enforce disappearances and extra-judicial killings. Earlier, Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf (PTI) Vice Chairman Shah Mehmood Qureshi had said that the law will turn Pakistan into a police state. “We have decided to take this law to court and challenge its anti-human rights stance.” The Pakistan Muslim League – Nawaz (PML-N) government argues that the legislation is necessary to curb rising terrorism and militancy across the country. The bill was passed late on Monday amid protests from members of the parliament and condemnation from international human rights groups. The law empowers Pakistan's already powerful security forces to shoot terrorism suspects at sight, detain suspects for up to 90 days, conduct secret trials and transfer cases to special courts. The law is yet to be approved by the opposition-controlled Senate.
Taliban militants in Pakistan have established an increasingly close relationship with insurgents from across the border in Afghanistan, supplying them with explosives and well-trained fighters, a senior Afghan army commander said on Wednesday. The Taliban in Pakistan have always operated separately from their Afghan namesakes, fighting to topple the democratically elected government in Islamabad and establish a strict Islamic Sharia state in the nuclear-armed nation of 180 million people. But in recent weeks the two groups have secretly agreed to work together, with Pakistani militants announcing a ceasefire with their government in order to preserve militant bases used to stage cross-border attacks. Major General Muhammad Shareef Yaftali, in charge of several eastern provinces on or near the Afghan border with Pakistan, said this relationship was growing stronger. "They are working together now. They are going to hold this relationship. It helps them," Yaftali, commander of the 203rd Corps, said at a military base in Afghanistan's Paktia province. "The Afghan and Pakistani Taliban have the same ideology. They are the same people. They are of the same school." Militant commanders have said the recent ceasefire in Pakistan was mainly imposed on the Taliban by the Afghan Haqqani Network which fears that an offensive by the Pakistani military in their North Waziristan stronghold could hamper their own push to carry out attacks in Afghanistan. Yaftali said many students brainwashed in strict madrassas in Pakistan, had crossed the border to join forces with the Taliban. He said some 30,000 madrassas were shut in Pakistan last year, prompting an exodus of radically minded fighters. "If one group is defeated they bring new fighters and it is easy for them to do that," said Yaftali, whose command extends over an area of about 83,000 square kilometers with a population of five million people. He said most of the explosive devices also came from Pakistan. "There are no explosivesmaking factories in Afghanistan," Yaftali said. "All the explosives enter Afghanistan from Pakistan. We are close to North Waziristan and there are Taliban training ground and funding sources."
Friday, 11 April 2014
NAWAZ URGES FOR THE REVIVAL OF SILK ROAD PM ASKS CHINESE PREMIER LI KEQIANG TO ENCOURAGE CHINESE COMPANIES TO INVEST IN PAKISTAN BOAO APP
HE revival of Silk Road can help in bringing economic growth and prosperity in the region, said Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif on Thursday. He was speaking at a session, ‘Reviving the Silk Road -A dialogue with Asian Leaders’ at the Boao Forum for Asia 2014. The prime minister appreciated China’s President Xi Jinping for proposing a visionary concept of the New Silk Road last year and renewing everyone’s interest in the subject. The Silk Road in today’s world of passports, visas and intricate tariff manuals, requires ingenuity both in policy formulation and policy application, said Nawaz. The premier mentioned that the policy should be based upon four elements including coordination to ensure mutually beneficial endeavours in peaceful and secure settings; introduction of cohesive laws and regulations regarding movement of humans and merchandize, taxation policies and tariff, non-tariff barriers; regional infrastructure for better connectivity by building better transport networks and convertibility of currencies and uniformity in financial and banking sectors. Nawaz highlighted that Pakistan’s geo-
governmenT To send fAulTy scAnners mATTer To nAb ISLAMABAD ONLINE
The federal government has decided to refer the former government’s Rs 1 billion scandal of scanners to the National Accountability Bureau (NAB). According to the Interior Ministry, some X-ray inspection systems worth Rs 1 billion were imported during former interior minister Rehman Malik’s tenure, but all of them were found to be not working and could not be installed. The government has now decided to file a case against the company and the officials who received the systems. Sources said the government has directed NAB to prepare a case against the former government.
graphical location supplements the potential of the Silk Road and enhances the scope of its revival. “Our geography links China and the New Silk Road to the warm waters of the Arabian Sea and the Persian Gulf. This is the linear dimension of our relevance with the Silk Road,” he said. Nawaz Sharif said Pakistan is at the junction of China, the Eurasian land-bridge and the Middle East which enables it to be route to a three-pronged economic corridor between China, Central Asia and the Middle East. He further mentioned that Pakistan’s long coastline also makes the ports of Karachi and Gwadar as a strategic transit on the maritime Silk Road. The premier claimed that PakistanChina Economic Corridor is the southern extension of the New Silk Road and in the course of the last ten months, the two countries had achieved a broad consensus on planning various infrastructure and energy projects under the project of the Economic Corridor. He mentioned that the PML-N government in the first year in office had already sought to improve governance and undertaken sound economic policies. Besides, the liabilities in the electricity sector were cleared last year and the acute energy shortfall was reduced.
BOAO: Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif addresses the Boao Forum on Thursday.
Prime Minister Sharif stressed that to achieve an efficient Silk Road, there was a need to invest in peace and mutually benefiting diplomacy. “We must strengthen bilateral and multilateral mechanisms, to settle outstanding disputes, through peaceful means,��� he said. He said Pakistan believed that the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO), with its diverse membership and strong institutional framework, was well positioned to promote peace and security, in the wider neighbourhood. He said the SCO was playing an
important role in settling disputes and managing conflicts which would help revive the Silk Road. MEETS LI: Prime Minister Sharif on Thursday urged Chinese Premier Li Keqiang to encourage Chinese companies to invest in Pakistan, especially in energy and infrastructure. He met with his Chinese counterpart on the sidelines of the Boao Forum for Asia (BFA). He was accompanied by Chief Minister Punjab Shehbaz Sharif and Special Assistant to the Prime Minister on Foreign Affairs Syed Tariq Fatemi.
SC says constitution supreme, parliament can’t legislate against it JUSTICE KHAWAJA SAYS THEY WON’T ALLOW GOVT TO SPEND MONEY ON UNNECESSARY MATTERS ISLAMABAD ONLINE
Supreme Court Justice Jawwad S Khawaja on Thursday said the constitution is supreme and parliament has no authority to legislate against it. He gave these remarks while presiding over a threemember bench of the Supreme Court (SC) during the course of hearing of the 3-G case. He also observed, “This is case of Rs 10.3 trillion. The state is the protector of fundamental rights of the citizens. USF funds can be utilized only for welfare purposes. This fund should have been spent on free health and education facilities but it is not being spent this way.
Poverty and deprivation is everywhere. As to why government does not spend money therein.” He remarked, “We will not allow this money to go into someone’s pocket. We will not allow this to happen that people go on starving to death and government keeps on spending this money on unnecessary matters.” The court appointed Qazi Mohsin and Rafiq Rajwana as amicus curiae for legal and constitutional explanation of the point if government could utilise USF Funds or otherwise. The court said, “We want to decide this case ahead of auction of G-3 and G-4 on April 23.” Petitioner Ali Raza said the government was not entitled to use USF Funds as per law and if it does so then it would have to legislate in this regard. Ismail Shah, member PTA, told the court 3-G and 4G auction was going to take place on April 23 which is likely to earn Rs 10.3 trillion to the government. He requested the court to decide the case as soon as possible. The court has sought reply from amicus curiae while adjourning the hearing of the case until April 16.
Govt turns down Senate panel proposal seeking suspension of 3G spectrum auction MINISTER SAYS THERE’S NO LEGAL LACUNA THAT CAN HAMPER AUCTION PROCESS ISLAMABAD STAFF REPORT
The government on Thursday turned down a Senate panel proposal seeking the suspension of the upcoming auction of 3G spectrum licences until the federal authorities complete Pakistan Telecommunication Authority’s (PTA) composition. The Senate Standing Committee on Information Technology and Telecommunication recommended the government to withhold the process of auction of 3G and 4G spectrum licences and instead first hire the third member of the PTA. Under the rules, the stand-
ing committee recommendations are not binding on the government. “There is no legal lacuna that could hamper the auction process and the government does not agree with the committee’s recommendation,” Minister of State for Information Technology Anusha Rahman told the committee. She vowed the government would fulfil all of its international commitments and the auction will be completed as per schedule on April 23. Pakistan is already lagging behind its regional peers in introduction of advanced telecom services, which is hampering growth in the services sectors that contribute more than half of the total national output. The government has decided to sell three 3G licences and two 4G licences this month, hoping to raise a minimum of $1.3 billion. The Standing Committee met on Thursday
under its chairman Senator Idrees Khan Safi to discuss the processes chosen to auction spectrums of 3G and 4G did not proceed well with committee members disagreeing on many fronts. The minister of state questioned the timing of bringing up the issue of 3G and 4G on the agenda, just a week before the auction. “I wish the committee would have taken up the issue in August last year and sought regular briefings afterwards,” she said. Senator Abidi and Senator Zahid Khan of Awami National Party (ANP) were of the views that the PTA’s board was so far incomplete and that bars the regulator from making a decision. Ministry of Information Technology Secretary Akhlaq Ahmad Tarar apprised the committee for having appointed two out of three members on the recommendations of an independent
commission. In the meantime, on the observation of Supreme Court of Pakistan, the additional charge of the post of Member Compliance has been temporarily given to Federal Secretary Ministry of Law, said Tarar. Tarar said according to the PTA Reorganization Act of 1996, the majority members of the PTA can take any decision. The committee members also objected over the government’s move to finalise policy guidelines by Auction Supervisory Committee, headed by Finance Minister Ishaq Dar. Rahman said under the Constitution the powers to determine policy guidelines rest with prime minister or his nominated federal minister. She maintained that the role of the supervisory committee was over and now the PTA was responsible to hold the auction in a transparent manner.
pml-n lAwyer, A shiA, shoT deAd in kArAchi KARACHI STAFF REPORT
A day after incidents of violence claimed 12 lives in Karachi, a lawyer belonging to the Pakistan Muslim League – Nawaz (PML-N) was shot dead in the Gulshan-e-Iqbal area Thursday. Identified as Waqar Shah, the lawyer was targeted when unidentified men riding motorbikes opened fire on his car, injuring him critically. He later succumbed to his injuries on the way to hospital. Sindh High Court Chief Justice (CJ) Maqbool Baqar took notice of the killing and asked the Inspector General Sindh to submit a report on the incident. Police claimed this was a planned attack and that the lawyer was shot three times. Waqar had left his house in a black Toyota Corolla and was on his way to the high court when the incident occurred. Police sources say the attack was sectarian in nature as Waqar was a member of the minority Shia community.
nATo Truck driver killed in gun ATTAck neAr JAmrud bypAss PESHAWAR STAFF REPORT
Gunmen in Jamrud on Thursday attacked container trucks carrying supplies to NATO troops in Afghanistan, killing a driver. The attack took place around 25 kilometres west of Peshawar as a convoy of seven oil tankers was on its way to Afghanistan. “Gunmen riding motorbikes started firing on the trucks as they were passing through the Jamrud Bypass, killing the driver of the last truck in the queue,” Ali Sher, a local administration official, said. Trucks travelling through Pakistan to supply US-led forces have frequently been attacked during NATO's 13-year intervention in Afghanistan. The coalition is winding down operations in Afghanistan with its 51,000 combat troops due to pull out by the end of this year. Late last year the United States suspended shipments of equipment out of Afghanistan through a key Pakistani route for a time. The move came after activists of the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) began forcibly searching trucks in an effort to halt NATO supplies in protest against US drone strikes in Pakistan.
blAme gAme in kp power ThefT cAse geTs dirTier POWER MINISTER REVEALS FOOTAGE SHOWING PTI MPA ABUSING HIM, PESCO OFFICIALS OVER ELECTRICITY PILFERAGE ISLAMABAD INP
The “intolerable and humiliating attitude” of Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) MPA Fazal Elahi has been reportedly seen in a footage in which Elahi is allegedly found abusing Minister of State for Water and Power Abid Sher Ali and officials of PESCO, says a press release issued Thursday. In the footage available with the power minister, he is found “pledging and swearing by reciting holy verses that he will kill all those who dare to come and remove kundas (tool for electricity theft)”. According to the press release, Elahi, in a telephonic conversation with the local SHO, “swore to call the SHO his father in case he cannot kill him for arresting power pilferers”. Minister of State for Water and Power Abid Sher Ali distributed the footage to all media outlets and a copy of it will also be delivered to PTI Chairman Imran Khan and KP chief minister, so an action could be taken in this regard.
Friday, 11 April 2014
'bachelor' narendra modi admits he is married ELECTION FRONTRUNNER SAYS HE WAS MARRIED TO SCHOOLTEACHER JASHODABEN FOR SOME YEARS BEFORE SEPARATING AHMEDABAD AGENCIES
LECTION frontrunner Narendra Modi has acknowledged for the first time that he is married, solving one of the biggest mysteries about the private life of the man tipped to be India's next prime minister. The 63-year-old is routinely described as a bachelor and is thought to have lived alone in his adult life having come through the ranks of a grassroots Hindu nationalist organisation in which celibacy is expected.
Media reports have described how he walked away from a marriage arranged by his parents when he was a child, but this has never been confirmed by the man himself who has portrayed his single status as a virtue while campaigning. In an affidavit on Wednesday as he filed his papers to stand as a member of parliament from the Vadadora constituency in western Gujarat state, he acknowledged that he had a wife. In the column of the affidavit to mention spouses, the chief minister of Gujarat wrote the name
"Jashodaben", but he states elsewhere in the filing that he had "no information" about her. Reports have consistently stated that he was betrothed to a 62-year-old now-retired school teacher called Jashodaben, who gave an interview in February in which she said she didn't "feel bad" about not being part of Modi's life. The relationship is believed to have never been consummated. Modi, consistently ahead in the polls, told a biographer recently that he "actually enjoys loneliness" and has said that because he has no children he is more likely to be a clean politician. "I've no familial ties. Who would I ever try to benefit through corruption?" he
told a recent rally. He has contested four times for seats in Gujarat's regional assembly but has never stated his marital status on the affidavits. India's mammoth national election, which entered the third of nine phases on Thursday with almost a fifth of the 543 seats in the parliament up for grabs, has been described as a "battle of the bachelors". Modi's main opponent Rahul Gandhi from the ruling Congress party, which has been in power nationally since 2004, is single. Other parts of Modi's personal story remain unclear, particularly a period as a young man when he is believed to have wandered in the Himalayas on a journey of spiritual discovery.
INDIA VOTES IN CRUCIAL PHASE OF NATIONAL ELECTIONS NEW DELHI: Indians voted in the crucial third phase of national elections Thursday, with millions going to the polls in the heartland states that are essential to the main opposition Hindu nationalist party's bid to end the 10-year rule of Congress party. Suspected Maoist rebels, who have urged a boycott, briefly disrupted voting in their strongholds in eastern Bihar state and neighbouring Chhattisgarh, carrying out acts of violence despite thousands of security forces fanning out in the area. Nearly 110 million people were eligible to vote in the third phase of the elections in 92 constituencies in 11 of India's 28 states and three federally administered union territories. The multiphase voting across the country runs until May 12, with results for the 543-seat lower house of Parliament announced May 16. Parts of sprawling Uttar Pradesh, Bihar, Chhattisgarh, Jharkhand, Haryana, Kerala, Madhya Pradesh and Maharashtra states were among the places holding balloting on Thursday. Hours before the voting began, Maoist insurgents blew up a jeep carrying paramilitary soldiers, killing two and wounding three others and causing a suspension in voting in some parts of eastern Bihar state, police said. The soldiers were patrolling a forest in a rebel stronghold in Munger district when their jeep hit a land mine nearly 225 kilometres (145 miles) southeast of Patna, the state capital, police officer Jitendra Rana said. AGENCIES
Turkey keeps YouTube block despite court rulings ISTANBUL AGENCIES
Turkish authorities defied court orders and reaffirmed a ban on YouTube imposed after the posting of illicit recordings of top secret security talks that was cited by Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan as part of a "dirty campaign" to topple him. Authorities imposed the ban on Google's video-sharing site on March 27 in the build-up to local elections, after weeks of leaked wiretaps which had emerged online, allegedly uncov-
ering corruption in Erdogan's inner circle. Erdogan emerged from the polls with his popularity largely intact. Turkey's telecoms regulator said on Thursday it would not end a block on YouTube, despite court rulings lifting the ban. "The measure blocking access to the youtube.com internet site remains in place," the Information and Communications Technologies Authority (BTK) said in a statement on its website. Access to Twitter had also been barred until the Constitutional Court ruled last week that this violated the
law. Erdogan accuses a US-based Islamic cleric of using a network of supporters to orchestrate an internet campaign and a police corruption investigation to undermine him. The cleric, Fethullah Gulen, denies any involvement and criticizes Erdogan over a purge of his followers from state bodies. Last Friday a lower court in Ankara ruled that the YouTube ban violated human rights and ordered most of the restrictions be lifted, citing the constitutional court ruling, and instead specifically blocked access to 15
videos. Despite a prosecutor's challenge to lifting the ban, imposed on grounds of state security, a higher Ankara court also ruled on Wednesday in favor of removing the general block on YouTube. However, the BTK said that while some of the offending links had been removed, access to others had only been blocked in Turkey and they could be viewed abroad. It said the ban would remain place "because some of the said content continues to be available on the internet site."
nATo’s rAsmussen sAys russiA musT pull bAck Troops PRAGUE AGENCIES Russia must pull back its troops from the Ukrainian border as a first step to start dialogue over the crisis there, NATO General Secretary Anders Fogh Rasmussen said on Thursday. Rasmussen said some 40,000 Russian troops were massed along Ukraine's borders “not training but ready for combat.” He told a news conference during a visit to the Czech Republic, a NATO member, that any further military action by Russia would lead to grave consequences and severe economic sanctions. Russia and the West are locked in a Cold War-style stand-off over Ukraine after Russia's annexation of Crimea and a buildup of unrest in mostly Russian-speaking eastern Ukraine. “From Prague, I have this message to Russia: You have a choice to stop blaming others for your own actions, to stop massing your troops, to stop escalating this crisis and start engaging in a genuine dialogue,” Rasmussen said.
BOAO: Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif shakes hands with his Chinese counterpart Li Keqiang before a meeting on the sidelines of the Boao Forum on Thursday.
senior briTish poliTiciAn cleAred of sex offences LONDON AGENCIES
Nigel Evans, a former deputy speaker of Britain's parliament, was cleared on Thursday of sexual assault and a rape charge and said afterwards he had been through 11 months of "hell". The 56-year-old openly gay lawmaker, who was vice chairman of Prime Minister David Cameron's Conservative Party from 1999 to 2001, had been accused of offences against seven young men, including alleged incidents inside the Houses of Parliament. However, he was found not guilty of all the accusations by a jury at Preston Crown Court in northern England. "This is not a time for celebration or euphoria ... there are no winners," Evans said in a speech on the court steps after the verdict. "I have gone through 11 months of hell. Nothing will ever be the same again," he said but declined to answer reporters' questions on whether he would try to resume his political career. Evans has been a member of parliament for Ribble Valley in Lancashire in northern England since 1992. As one of parliament's three deputy speakers, Evans's duties had included keeping order during often fractious debates, calling on members to speak and enforcing the rules of the lower House of Parliament.
In India, show the finger after voting, get cheaper gas and food NEW DELHI AGENCIES Showing the finger can get you a punch in the face in many parts of the world. In India, during this general election at least, it can earn discounts at gas stations, restaurants, spas, stores and hospitals after voting. India's polling stations mark each voter's left forefinger with an indelible dot of a silver nitrate solution after casting the ballot to guard against voter fraud. In a move to increase political involvement, Young Indians, a group linked to Confederation of Indian Industry trade association, launched the “Show the ink, See prices sink”
campaign, which gives discounts and other incentives to people who vote. “Among youngsters it's become a cool thing to flaunt their fingers after they've cast their vote,” said D.N.V. Kumara Guru, national chairman of the group, saying more than 100 businesses had signed up for the campaign. “There is a lot of momentum across the country.” At the last general election, only about 58 per cent of the electorate voted, with many urban Indians in particular apathetic. During this year's election, which began on Monday and runs until May 12, 815 million voters will be eligible to participate. Besides the discounts, the Election Commission has issued newspaper advertisements using
celebrities like Virat Kohli, the cricket star heartthrob of millions, to exhort people to vote. In the capital, New Delhi, which went to the polls on Thursday, people who show the marked forefinger can get a discount of about 0.7 per cent on petrol at any one of 67 pumps in and around the city during the day. “It's our moral and social duty to motivate citizens of India. After a long freedom struggle we got this right,” said Ajay Bansal, general secretary of the Federation of All India Petroleum Traders. Gas station owners wanted to share the cost of travelling to a poll booth by offering this measure, Bansal said. They also wanted to encourage
youngsters because in India people can start to vote at the same age they can begin to drive a car. In the southern tech capital of Bangalore, the Sakra World Hospital is offering a 10 per cent discount on outpatient services such as health check-ups and consultations between April 18 and May 1 to people with an ink-marked finger. Virgin Atlantic Airways, known for its unusual promotions, announced voters have the chance to win cabin upgrades, lounge access and goodie hampers in a lucky draw. But there's a catch — they need to be travelling a bit farther than the distance to the polling station, they have to be booked on a DelhiLondon flight with the British airline.
Friday, 11 April, 2014
PakiStan will work with whoEvEr PEoPlE of india ElECt: fo SPOKESWOMAN SAYS PAKISTAN LOOKING FORWARD TO RESUME STALLED PEACE TALKS WITH INDIA ISLAMABAD STAFF REPORT
AKISTAN on Thursday indicated that it was ready to work with whichever party who is handed a mandate by the Indian people in the ongoing parliamentary elections in India. “We deal with countries. It’s for the people of India to elect whoever they deem fit. We will take it from there,” Foreign Office spokesperson Tasneem Aslam told reporters at her weekly briefing when asked whether Pakistan
SAYS PAKISTAN HOPES AFGHAN ELECTIONS WILL CONTRIBUTE TO BUILDING OF A MORE UNIFIED AFGHANISTAN
would respond positively if hardline Hindu nationalist Bhartia Janta Party (BJP) comes to power. The nine-phase vote in India began earlier this week and will conclude on 12 May. The main contest in the biggestever polls is between the Congress, led by Rahul Gandhi and the BJP, led by the controversial Hindu nationalist leader Narendra Modi. Modi, who is ahead in all the preelection opinion polls, has been accused of being linked to India’s worst antiMuslim riots in 2002 in the state of Gu-
jarat. He has been calling for talking tough with neighboring Pakistan, but critics doubt whether he would do the same if he forms the government. STALLED PEACE TALKS: Aslam said Pakistan was looking forward to resuming the stalled peace talks with India. So far, India has been reluctant to resume the full spectrum of dialogue linking the process with Pakistan successfully prosecuting the suspects of the November 2008 Mumbai attacks. Lamenting that the process had been disrupted for the last three years, Aslam stressed the need for restoration of the eight-point agenda in the composite dialogue in order to address all outstanding issues including the longstanding problem of Jammu and Kashmir. “In order to have sustainable and durable peace, we need to address all
the issues and disputes that stand between Pakistan and India having normal, good neighbourly relations and having peace and cooperation in the region,” she emphasised. AFGHAN ELECTION: The spokesperson hoped that the recentlyheld presidential elections in Afghanistan would contribute to the building of a stronger, more unified and prosperous Afghanistan. “We would continue to support the Afghan people every step of the way,” she said. She said Pakistan’s consistent support for a free and fair electoral process was based on the belief that it was vital, both for a smooth political transition and for Afghanistan’s future stability. Pakistan took a range of measures to reinforce existing security arrangements to help the efforts for peaceful
conduct of the elections, she added. “These included enhanced vigilance and security along the entire length of the Pakistan-Afghanistan border, sealing of the crossing-points, deployment of additional troops, aerial surveillance, and enhanced communication through Border Coordination Centers.” Aslam maintained that the Afghan electoral institutions now have the heavy responsibility to ensure successful completion of the next steps in the electoral process. IRANIAN GUARDS: The Iranian guards were freed a few days ago, prompting the floor to question Aslam regarding any communication on this matter. “Our authorities and security agencies confirmed that they have no indication that these guards were brought to Pakistan, and also that there was absolutely no indication that they were released in Pakistan,” Aslam responded. Aslam also briefly mentioned the proposed visit to Iran by Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif, hoping that the dates could be worked out for the first part of the year. She further stated that Pakistan and Iran have a multifaceted relationship and cooperation.
Sardar MEhtab aPPointEd nEw kP govErnor
LAHORE: Security personnel check the train upon arrival of Sikh pilgrims at Wagah Railway Station on Thursday. ONLINE
PESHAWAR STAFF REPORT
Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz’s (PML-N) senior vice president Sardar Mehtab Ahmed Khan has been appointed as the new governor of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province. President Mamnoon Hussain appointed Sardar Mehtab on the advice of Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif. The Cabinet Division has also issued a notification for his appointment. Earlier on Tuesday, Mehtab had tendered his resignation from the KP Assembly seat after his nomination by the federal government as governor of the province. He succeeds Engineer Shaukatullah, who resigned from the post on Tuesday. Sardar Mehtab is likely to take his oath of office today (Friday).
SC aSkS ECP to rEPort on PollS’ vErdiCt ExECution ISLAMABAD ONLINE
The Supreme Court (SC) on Thursday sought a detailed reply from the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) on implementation of the court’s directives during the general elections. The court also adjourned the hearing of PTI Chairman Imran Khan’s petition on verification of thumb impression for an indefinite period. A three-member bench presided over by Chief Justice of Pakistan (CJP) Tassaduq Hussain Jillani took up for hearing the court’s orders implementation case during the general elections. Bilal Hasan Manto said, “Some things have gone easy and some things difficult. Decision on this count is must. The petition filed with respect of implementation of court’s orders during election is a difficult petition. This be heard separately. Review petition be adjourned. The court had said that para-wise reply had been sought on court’s orders implementation. Election commission has sought reply. It has given reply in response to its reply which is in the form of a column. Elections have now been held.” The CJP said, “It will be better if you give in writing all the things in this regard. What you are saying now will not be effective. File new petition Time is given for filing new petition. Notice is issued to election commission.” The hearing of the case was adjourned for indefinite period.
SC issues detailed verdict over discarding of Musharraf’s petition ISLAMABAD STAFF REPORT The Supreme Court of Pakistan on Thursday issued its detailed verdict over the disposal of the petition filed by former military ruler General (r) Pervez Musharraf against the apex court's earlier decision, saying the matter was time -barred. Former president Musharraf had challenged the court's earlier judgment which had declared the military dictator's Nov 3, 2007 emergency, and most of the actions under taken it, as illegal and unconstitutional. The 42-page verdict was drafted by Chief Justice Tasadduq Hussain Jillani whereas Justice Jawwad S. Khawaja attached 12 pages of additional notes to the verdict. The court while issuing its
judgement said that the arguments of the former president's lawyers were heard to fulfil the requirements of justice but the plea had to be discarded as it was timebarred. The apex court’s 14-member larger bench, headed by Chief Justice Tassaduq Hussain Jilani, on Jan 30, 2014, disposed of the petition, citing that the plea contained irrelevant precedence and was also time-barred. There is a limited time after the announcement of a court judgment during which an appeal can be filed to challenge the court's decision and upon its expiry the case is considered as time-barred. On Dec 23, 2013, Musharraf had filed a petition after a delay of over four years, seeking review of the landmark July 31, 2009, decision but the
review petition was returned by the court office by raising eight objections, against which an appeal was preferred. The review petition had pleaded that Musharraf was facing trial before the special court for the offence of high treason on the basis of July 31, 2009, verdict of the apex court, also accepting for the first time that the constitutional deviation by clamping Nov 3, 2007, emergency was for public good and to get rid of former chief justice Iftikhar Mohammad Chaudhry as well as some judges since their removal had then become impossible under the normal legal procedures. The review petition argued that former elected prime minister Shaukat Aziz had recommended taking extraconstitutional measures of proclaiming Nov 3 emergency.
ghCl offiCial on way to iSlaMabad along with 125 StaffErS ISLAMABAD STAFF REPORT
In order to facilitate an official of the Genco Holding Company Limited (GHCL), the authorities concerned have moved him to Islamabad from Lahore along with 125 employees, sources said on Thursday. According to the notification issued by the office, the GHCL chief executive officer (CEO) with the stamp and signature of director general (HR) reads, “It is notified that, consequent upon approval accorded by the board of directors of the company, head office of GHCL has been shifted to Islamabad at House No 22, Street No 10, Sector F-8/3, Islamabad.” Any correspondence with the GHCL may be made at Islamabad’s new office address. An official said that the office of GHCL Islamabad was established in 2012 by Naveed Ismail, then GHCL CEO. He also said that after Ismail, the office was re-shifted to Lahore in 2013 to save rent and other expenses. He said that the office was again re-shifted to Islam after Water and Power Ministry’s National Transmission and Despatch Company (NTDC) Joint Secretary Aftab Nadeem took additional charge as GHCL CEO. A house has been rented near Faisal Masjid in this regard. Official said Nadeem, who has only additional charge, was trying to shift almost 125 employees to Islamabad. Due to this decision, the low salaried employees were worried, the official said.
310C 220C Friday, 11 April, 2014
PRAyeR TimingS FAJR
KARACHI: Relatives mourn the death of Waqar-ul-Hassan who was killed in a firing incident by unknown assailants in Gulshan-e-Iqbal Area. online
PML-N’S LAWYER, 3 STUDENTS SHOT DEAD KARACHI
Shc cJ takeS notice
HE vice president PML-N’s lawyers’ wing, Syed Waqar Shah, was killed in a firing incident on Thursday. According to details, unidentified gunmen opened fire at his car in Gulshan-e-Iqbal killing advocate Syed Waqar Shah on the spot. The police collected seven shells of 9MM pistol from the site. According to witnesses, four armed men attacked the vehicle of Syed Waqar. Following the news, the lawyers’ fraternity boycotted court proceedings in the troubled metropolis. Meanwhile, three students were killed and four others injured in a firing incident on a roadside hotel in Gulistan-e-Johar on late Wednesday night. According to reports, unknown gunmen opened fire on a hotel in Gulistan-e-Jauhar killing two students of a local seminary and injuring four others. Tension gripped Gulistan-e-Jauhar and adjacent areas as armed men fired aerial shots and burnt tyres to protest against the incident. The enraged people also took to the streets and pelted the passing vehicles
KARACHI: Sindh High Court Chief Justice Maqbool Baqar took notice of the targeted killing of a lawyer belonging to the Pakistan Muslim League–Nawaz (PML-N) who was shot dead in Gulshane-Iqbal area of Karachi. The CJ ordered the police to submit a complete report on the incident. online with stones. Earlier, a doctor was killed and another man injured as a result of firing on a car in Gulistan-e-Jauhar. Funeral prayers for three students were offered in Gulshan-e-Johar. POLICE ARREST 70 CRIMINALS: The city police in their ongoing drive against criminals have arrested 70 alleged criminals from different parts of the metropolis during last 24 hours. The police during 100 raids and nine encounters arrested murderers, absconders, drug peddlers, robbers and others for their alleged involvement in various crimes, said a statement on Thursday. The police also recovered different kinds of arms and drugs from their possession.
CIA tasked to Seven Short filmS probe six targeted by lyari StudentS killings in two days Screened KARACHI STAFF RePoRT
The city police Thursday constituted a special investigation team to probe the incidents of targeted killings that claimed six lives during the last couple of days in the violence-prone metropolis. Dr Hyder Raza, Ali Ahmed, Riaz, Imran, Advocate Syed Waqar Nadeem Zaidi and Waqas Shah were targeted and killed by unknown assailants on Thursday and Wednesday in different city neighbourhoods. “A special investigation team has been constituted by Addl IGP Karachi Shahid Hayat,” said a police spokesman Thursday. The team, he said, would be
investigating and reporting the murders under the direct supervision of DIGP CIA Sultan Ali Khawaja. Khawaja included in his team SSP East Pir Mohammad Shah, SP SIU Farooq Awan and SP Investigation East Abdul Hameed Khoso. The DIGP CIA would be allowed to take any other police officer in the team from any unit of city police who might be able to assist them solving these murder cases, the spokesman said.In a related development, City Police Chief Hayat has also announced a reward of Rs 500,000 for those who would help the police arrest the criminals behind any of these cases of targeted killings.
GOVT DOING ALL TO PROMOTE TECHNICAL EDUCATION: PRESIDENT KARACHI APP
President Mamnoon Hussain on Thursday said the government was committed to promote education and it was making all possible efforts to promote the education of engineering and technology as well in the country. “It is not only expanding educational facilities in the government sector, but also encouraging the private sector to invest in the noble cause of nation building,” the president said while addressing the 17th convocation of Sir Syed University of Engineering and Technology (SSUET) on Thursday. He noted with satisfaction that the private sector was positively responding to nation building efforts. The president, however, appealed the private sector to fortify their efforts in this direction and establish more educa-
tional institutions particularly in the field of science and technology. He congratulated all the graduating students, their parents and the faculty members on their accomplishment. “No doubt, it is a great honour to earn a degree from this prestigious seat of learning,” he said, adding, “You must be proud that your alma mater is the legacy of the vision of our great leader Sir Syed Ahmed Khan.” The president further said that Aligarh Muslim University Old Boys’ Association deserved highest appreciation in establishing this university of science and technology. “The initiative is in line with wishes of our great leader Quaid-i-Azam Muhammad Ali Jinnah, who wanted us to excel in science and technology,” he added. The president recalled a message of Quaid-e-Azam Muhammad Ali Jinnah to the All Pakistan Education Conference held in Karachi on
November 27, 1947, in which the Quaid said, “There is immediate and urgent need for training our people in the scientific and technical education in order to build up future economic life, and we should see that our people undertake scientific commerce, trade and particularly, wellplanned industries. But do not forget that we have to compete with the world, which is moving very fast in this direction. Also I must emphasize that greater attention should be paid to technical and vocational education”. The president was appreciative of SSUET, which within just two decades of its existence, had distinguished itself as a prominent institution of the country for imparting technological study. “This is no small achievement”, he added. The president said it became possible with continued hard work, devotion and dedication of the faculty and vision of the
management. “I appreciate Engr Adil Usman, chancellor of the university for his dynamic leadership,” he added. The president said he was impressed by the achievements that the university had made within a short span of 20 years. “Your valuable contribution in promoting the cause of engineering and science education in the country is highly commendable,” he added. Addressing the graduating students, the president said: “Today marks an important day in your lives. It is by sheer hard work, dedication and perseverance that you have achieved success in your academic pursuits.” “It is a beginning of another phase of your life. I hope that you will be guided by the noble values that you have acquired at this university”, he said, adding, “Ahead of you is now the noble task to serve the nation with sincerity, honesty and commitment.”
KARACHI STAFF RePoRT
Dressed smartly and presenting their ideas eloquently to the audience seated across them, students belonging to Lyari’s Youth Café had their seven short films screened at the Beach Luxury Hotel the other day. Organised by the Karachi Youth Initiative, the short films and documentaries shot and edited by the teenagers were based on a variety of ideas. From shrines to football grounds to young students taking up social work to raise awareness within their own circles about the multiple banes plaguing the area at present; each film had a unique message to send out to its viewers. An associate producer at Sharmeen Obaid Chinoy films, Haya Fatima Iqbal was the driving force behind the basic training the young students received. “I have been with them since June last year, till January of 2014,” said Haya minutes before the event started. “These students were not hesitant when it came to learning. They asked questions and didn’t back off until you told them exactly what they needed to know. I hope they continue making films. Nobody can tell their stories better than them.” About her students, she said
the ones she thought would be average outshone themselves by the end of the training. And the event was no different as every film in its own simple manner gradually left a strong impression on the audience. The team comprises three girls and six boys hailing from Lyari, apart from one student who joined them during trainings from Baldia Town. Speaking to the audience before the screening, Sohail Rahi, vice president of the Youth Café in Lyari, said: “It’s important for these stories to come out through a creative platform. For that we are willing to do everything for these children.” One story that stood out among other films was based on the blind musicians of Lyari. The stories included sound bites from a veteran tabla master and a sarangi player — both blind — speaking about their life and lessons learnt. In one of the scenes, the tabla master said: “Prayer also needs rhythm, or else it won’t be able to attract disciples to a mosque.” In another documentary, two students made a short film titled Khalifa, in which the various subcultures within Lyari were spoken about in a beautiful mix of audio and video with a powerful narration.
Friday, 11 April, 2014
WB TEAM DISCUSES $ 115.8M KPT PROJECT WITH MINISTER KARACHI APP
EDERAL Minister for Ports and Shipping Senator Kamran Michael on Thursday met World Bank officials and discussed World Bank financed $ 115.8 million Karachi port improvement project. This project has two components - the reconstruction of berths (15 to 17 A) and to carry out institutional strengthening studies, a statement by Karachi Port Trust (KPT) said. The minister was informed about the scope of studies conducted for
the 10 years’ strategic business plan, improvements of environment health safety standards at the port and improvement of financial management systems of the port. The minister appreciated the efforts towards the mid-term review of World Bank-financed Karachi port improvement project. He was apprised of the objectives of the midterm review which the World Bank team is presently doing to assess progress on key components of the project besides reviewing the project’s operational aspects and progress towards achieving the development objectives. The mission will focus on determining
corrective actions needed for the project to achieve intended results and suggest any adjustments if so required based upon the discussion with Government counterparts and other stakeholders. The mission is also meeting port users to get their views and feedback. The team included World Bank’s Port Economist Edward Liang, Consultant Yousuf Hussain, Disbursement Specialist Anwar Bhatti, Financial Management Specialist Naveed Saeeed and Port Specialist Hassan Afzal Zaidi. Chairman KPT, Rear Admiral Azhar Hayat and KPT’s planning and development division team also attended.
COURT ISSUES WARRANTS FOR SI SHAFIQ TANOLI KARACHI inP
The Sindh High Court Thursday issued arrest warrants for Sub Inspector (SI) Shafiq Tanoli on contempt charges. The divisional bench of the SHC was hearing a case of missing person, Mairajuddin, who was produced in the court on the orders of SHC. As the hearing began, the court asked SHO Tanoli to appear in person in an hour, but he could not. The SHC bench issued his arrest warrants on contempt charges. The court also issued show-cause notice to commandant officer Malir Cant to appear in court on April 29.
GULSHAN-E-IQBAL BECOMESDENGUE RESERVOIR:SUPARCO KARACHI online
A GPS study conducted by the Pakistan Space and Upper Atmosphere Research Commission (SUPARCO) has revealed that Gulshan-e-Iqbal had become reservoir for dengue larvae in the city. In a report submitted to the Sindh government, the study revealed that different water reservoirs in Gulshan-eIqbal had become dengue larvae breeding areas, posing serious threats to the health conditions in the metropolis. The meeting was told that 178 dengue cases had been reported in Sindh in 2014, out of which only 9 were reported in interior of Sindh. Speaking on this occasion, Secretary Health Iqbal Durrani warned that if prompt measures were not taken, a Thar like disaster might take place in Karachi.
‘HEIRS OF POLICE MARTYRS TO GET PLOTS’ KARACHI: Sindh Inspector General of Police Iqbal Mehmood has said that plots will be given to the legal heirs of those martyrs of the Sindh police who embraced martyrdom since 1990 to date. Total 300 acres of land has been acquired to distribute plots among the legal heirs of police martyrs, he said. He said this after attending the funeral prayer of Shaheed Sadaat Khan, who was killed in firing by unknown men in Gulshan-eGhazi area situated in the jurisdiction of Police Station Saeedabad, said a statement on Thursday. APP
08 COMMENT Government on a borrowing binge like never before
Friday, 11 April, 2014
Assad there to stay? How the US campaign for “regime change” in Syria became a magnet for international terrorism
Tall claims aside, national economy presents a bleak picture
ESPITE fabulous claims of improvement by Ishaq Dar, the national economy continues to present a bleak picture. Power sector circular debt, excluding what is owed to oil companies, reached Rs180 billion by February. Such is the dismal state of governance that the federal and provincial governments failed to realize staggering amounts in dues from state sector enterprises and government departments. Starting from defence forces to autonomous bodies, provincial government departments, down to municipal corporations, public sector owes hundreds of millions of rupees to WAPDA. As of Jan-Feb this year, the outstanding power dues stood at Rs492 billion, the private sector owing Rs366bn while the public sector the rest. In its last report, the SBP expressed concern over the performance of the Federal Board of Revenue and said the annual revenue target could not be met this year. The Bank cautioned that inflation would remain in the range of 8.5 to 9.5pc “unless the government announces an increase in household gas tariff, which was due in January”. The government borrowing from commercial banks has also seen an increase in the second quarter. It mobilised Rs188.1bn from commercial banks against a net retirement of Rs179.1bn in the first quarter. Despite a commitment to the IMF that it will hand over the joint control of foreign exchange reserves to SBP and withdraw its finance secretary from its board to give autonomy to the central bank, even a single step in the direction has yet to be taken. The government meanwhile continues to manipulate the par value of rupee for political considerations. Borrowings meanwhile continue to mount. The terms on which Pakistan’s Eurobonds were offered for sale is a reflection on the state of national economy under the PML-n government. Pakistan had offered a whopping return of 7.25 per cent on its $1 billion of five-year bonds and 8.25pc on $1 billion of 10-year securities. This is much higher than the returns promised on US bonds. It is even higher than the returns Pakistan had offered in 2007, the last time it had tapped the world markets. Sri Lanka sold a $500m bond earlier this week, offering only 5.12pc return on its notes – much below the highly lucrative offer made by Pakistan. The high premium offered underlines that investors still consider Pakistan a high risk country for investment. The reason is simple. Despite government’s offer of talks to the militants, there is no let up in the incidents of terrorism while power outages and gas shortage continue to act as brakes to slow down the wheels of industry. The sale of bonds on these terms amounts to overburdening the successive governments with debt. Even junk-rated African economies have successfully cashed in on the international hunger for higher yields. In the circumstances it is Machiavellian indeed to claim that the quick sale of Eurobonds is a sign of the international investors’ improving confidence in Pakistan’s economic policies.
Dedicated to the legacy of the late Hameed Nizami
Arif Nizami Editor
Aziz-ud-Din Ahmad Joint Editor Lahore – Ph: 042-36375963-5 Fax: 042-32535230 Karachi – Ph: 021-35381208-9 Fax: 021-35381208 Islamabad – Ph: 051-2204545 Web: www.pakistantoday.com.pk Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
ong gone the days when the U.S.-led so-called “Friends of Syria” could plausibly claim that two thirds of Syria was controlled by rebel forces, that Syrian capital Damascus was under siege and its fall was just a matter of time and that the days of President Bashar al-Assad were numbered and accordingly he “should step down.” The war on Syria has taken a Uturn during the past year. Assad now firmly holds the military initiative. The long awaited foreign military intervention could not take off; it was prevented by the emerging multi-polar world order. Syrian and non-Syrian insurgents are now on the run. Assad stands there to stay. The thinly veiled Un legitimacy, which was used to justify the invasions of Iraq and Libya under the pretexts of the responsibility to protect on humanitarian grounds, failed to impose no-fly zones, humanitarian corridors and other instruments of foreign intervention; they foundered on the borders of Syrian national sovereignty. The official Syrian Arab Army (SAA), which was strategically organized and stationed to fight a regular war in defence against the Israeli occupying power in the western south of the country, was taken by surprise by an internationally and regionally coordinated unconventional attack on its soft civilian backyard where it had zero presence. Within a relatively short period of time the SAA succeeded in containing the initial attack, in adapting trained units to unconventional guerrilla war in cities and in winning over the support of the civilian population, without acceding any ground of its defence vis-àvis Israel. Ever since, the SAA was gaining more ground, liberating more civilian centers from insurgent terrorists, closing more border crossing points used for infiltration of foreign fighters into the country, cutting of their supply lines and besieging pockets of their presence in inner old cities and in their isolated concentrations in the countryside. The capital Damascus, more than 95% of the common borders with Lebanon and the central heart of Syria around Homs are now secured. Except the northern city of Raqqa, no where in Syria the insurgents can claim exclusive control. The SAA is winning all its battles. The declared goal now of the U.S., Saudi, Qatari and Turkish financial, military and logistical support for the insurgents is no more the “regime change,” but creating a balance of power aimed at improving their standing in future negotiations with the regime. To do so, they claim they are
extending their support to what they describe as the “moderate” insurgents. However, “moderate” rebels are a rare species in Syrian insurgency. Entering its fourth year now, the war on Syria has created a highly polarized war zone that has left no room for any moderates. Combatants are fighting now to death in a battle of life or death. The fighting lines are strictly drawn between homeland defence and foreign intervention, between national forces and international terrorists and between an existing secular and civil state and a future state perceived to be governed by an extremist or, at the best, a moderate version of Islamist ideology supported by the most backward, tribal and undemocratic regional states with similar sectarian ideologies. During his testimony at the Senate Foreign Relations Committee on last September 3, U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry denied that the “moderate” Syrian rebels are infiltrated by the alQaeda terrorists as “basically not true.” The Syrian “opposition has increasingly become more defined by its moderation, more defined by the breadth of its membership, and more defined by its adherence to some, you know, democratic process and to an allinclusive, minority protecting constitution, which will be broad-based and secular with respect to the future of Syria,” Kerry testified. However, hard facts on the ground in Syria as well as statements by other U.S. high ranking officials challenge Kerry’s testimony as a politically motivated, far from truth and misleading statement. Last March, general David Rodriguez, head of the U.S. Africa Command, testified before the House Armed Services Committee that “Syria has become a significant location for al-Qaeda-aligned groups to recruit, train, and equip extremists.” The previous month, James Clapper, the U.S. director of national intelligence, called Syria a “huge magnet” for Islamic extremists in testimony prepared for the Senate intelligence committee. Last January, Clapper also told a Senate intelligence hearing that “training complexes” for foreign fighters were spotted in Syria and chair of the Senate intelligence committee Dianne Feinstein described Syria as “the most notable new security threat in the year” since the committee’s last meeting. Matthew olsen, director of the U.S. government’s national Counterterrorism Center, was on record to say that “Syria has become really the predominant jihadist battlefield in the world.” Also on record was Jeh C. Johnson, Secretary of Homeland Security, who stated that the Syria war “has become a matter of homeland security,” former CIA Deputy Director Michael Morell who identified Syria as “the greatest threat to U.S. national security,” FBI Director until last September Robert Mueller who “warned that an increasing flow of U.S. citizens heading to Syria and elsewhere to wage jihad against regional powers could end up in a new generation of homegrown terrorists.” All these and other high level U.S. conclusions do not testify to the existence of “moderate” insurgents in Syria and vindicate the official Syrian narration as much as they refute Kerry’s statement about the “democratic,” “secular” and “moderate” Syrian “op-
position.” “Moderate” rebels are either marginal or a rare species in Syrian insurgency and if they do exist they are already increasingly concluding “reconciliation” agreements with the Syrian government, according to which they disarm, join the government anti terror and anti “strangers” military and security campaign or simply recurring to attending to their personal lives. The Americans and their Saudi and Turkish bullies are left with the only option of artificially creating artificial “moderates,” whom they unrealistically and wishfully dream of turning into a credible leading force on the ground. As part of his efforts to mend fences with Saudi Arabia, a persistent advocate of war and militarization in Syria, U.S. President Barak obama seems to have pursued recently a twopronged diplomatic and military policy. Diplomatically, he closed the Syrian embassy and consulates in the United States and restricted the movement of the Syrian envoy to the United nations as a “down payment” ahead of his visit to the kingdom on last March 28. Militarily, he promised more arms to Syrian “moderate” rebels during his visit. After the visit he was reportedly considering arming those “moderate” rebels with more advanced weaponry, including anti-aircraft missiles or MAnPADs. While providing those “moderates” with MAnPADs is yet to be confirmed, Israel’s Debkafile website on this April 7 reported that two moderate Syrian rebel militias – the Free Syrian Army and the Syrian Revolutionary Front – have been supplied with advanced US weapons, including armour-piercing, optically-guided BgM-71 ToW missiles, which enter the Middle East for the first time. Images of rebels equipped with these arms have begun to circulate in recent days. Both militias are coordinating and cooperating with the al-Qaeda offshoot the Islamic State in Iraq and alSham (ISIS) and the al-Qaeda affiliate Jabhat al-nusra, both listed as terrorist groups by the U.S., Saudi Arabia Syria and Iraq. About Time for U.S. to Reconsider Within this context, the existing CIA-led program in Jordan for training pre-approved “moderates” will reportedly be expanded to raise the number of trainees from one hundred to six hundred a month. At this rate, according to Charles Lister, a visiting fellow at the Brookings Center in Qatar, writing on this April 3, “it would take close to two years to produce a force” that could numerically rival the extremist “Ahrar alSham” group and “it would take seven years” to create a force that could rival the extremist “Islamic Front,” let alone the mainstream groups of terrorist insurgents like the ISIS and the al-nusra. going ahead with such a U.S.Saudi training program in Jordan is tantamount to planning an extended war on Syria until such time that the regime changes or the country becomes a failed state, as the planners wishfully hope. Moderate Syrian rebels are a U.S. mirage. With logistical vital help from Turkey, the Saudi and Qatari U.S. allies were determined to successfully militarize and hijack legitimate popular protests for change lest they sweep
along their own people and spill over into their own territories. It’s about time that the U.S. policy makers reconsider, deal with the facts on the ground in Syria and stop yielding to the bullying of their regional allies who continue to beat the drums of war only to survive the regional tidal wave of change. To contain this tidal wave of change, Qatar, Saudi Arabia and Turkey have sponsored an Islamist alternative as a counterrevolution. The Muslim Brotherhood International (MBI) was a version of this alternative. Unfortunately the U.S. got along with it. The MBI plan in Egypt has proved counterproductive. Its failure in Egypt pre-empted for good any hope for its success in Syria. The ensuing rift among the anti-Syria allies doomed the plan regionally. President Assad’s statement on this April 7 that the “project of political Islam” has failed was not overoptimistic or premature. neither was the statement of his ally, the leader of Lebanon’s Hezbullah, Hassan nasrallah, on the same day that “the phase of bringing down the regime or bringing down the (Syrian) state is over… They cannot overthrow the regime, but they can wage a war of attrition.” The U.S. campaign for more than three years now for a “regime change” in Syria has created only a “huge magnet” for international terrorism, thanks to Saudi, Qatari and Turkish military, financial and logistical support. Peaceful protesters were sidelined to oblivion. More than three years of bloodshed left no room for moderates. “Regime change” by force from outside the country, along the Iraqi and Libyan lines, has proved a failure. U.S. and western calls for Syrian President Bashar al-Assad to step down is now a faint cry that can hardly be heard. All world and regional indications as well as military developments on the ground refer to one fact: Assad is there to stay. Change will come only under his leadership or his guidance. Understanding with him is the only way to internal and regional stability. More or less he has succeeded in turning the “huge magnet” for international terrorists into their killing field. His final victory is only a matter of time. Arming rebels, “moderates” or terrorists regardless, will only perpetuate the Syrian people’s plight and fuel regional anti-Americanism. The sooner the United States act on this fact is the better for all involved parties. Nicola Nasser is a veteran Arab journalist based in Bir Zeit, West Bank of the Israeli-occupied Palestinian territories. email@example.com
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Hazardous henna A heart-wrenching incident of a girl from Karachi who had to get her arms removed surgically as a result of applying chemicalinfested mehndi has caused me to draw attention of the people towards the dangers of using emergency cones and instant henna (mehndi). A number of mehndi and black mehndi brands in the market are adulterated with toxic
and carcinogenic substances which not only cause instant allergic reactions but may also enter the blood stream via the skin which is even more detrimental. The widespread sale of such hazardous dyes is made easier by the fact that there is no law concerning the adulteration of cosmetic products. In recent times many hospitals have reported a large number of cases in which people’s skins have been damaged or scarred after using such
adulterated henna. The underlying purpose of sending this piece in is to pull people out of oblivion and to request the government of Pakistan to ban all such harmful products which do not provide a detailed list of ingredients and side effects. I also request the public to be careful and prefer traditional natural form of henna over instant form. MIRAL AJMAL KC, Lahore
Friday, 11 April, 2014
The fable of 'India First' BloomBerg chandrahas choudhury
ETTER late than never, the proverb goes, but it should have a companion saying in the realm of politics: Better late than early. As India headed to the polls Monday at the start of a five-week process that will make up the largest democratic exercise in history, the Bharatiya Janata Party, the right-of-center party projected by every opinion poll to seize power in these elections, rolled out its 2014 election manifesto. That’s far too late for a party with such vast resources to be communicating to the electorate its vision of governance, economic reforms, center-state relations, education, taxation and foreign policy. But there’s a good reason for the delay: Since January, opinion polls have shown the party to be pulling ever further away from its political competition as a campaign founded almost entirely on the charismatic personality and development record of its leader, Narendra Modi, has caught fire. IndIa's aspIratIons Modi's appeal to a “social coalition” that has never been seen in Indian politics -- consisting of the BJP’s traditional urban, upper-caste, Hindu vote base; large sections of the middle class as well as the aspirational “neo-middle" classes; a substantial number of the 100 million young people who are eligible to vote for the first time; and an equally large constituency of voters who seek a stable government but are disaffected with the ruling Congress Party -- has created an electoral safe house for the BJP that it does not want to unsettle by bringing up divisive issues that were
once at the very core of its agenda. It’s not just the timing of the manifesto that points to the BJP’s desire to play it safe; its content does as well. Like an elaborate breakfast buffet that offers the traditional options as well as pastries, curries and even Chinese food, the party’s manifesto committee has provided a political menu that leaves out nothing: development for all, rooting out corruption and red tape, special emphasis on women and disadvantaged sections of society, reviving growth rates, containing the fiscal deficit while maintaining or even extending current levels of government spending. (The BJP appears to have no quarrel with the previous government’s vast social-security programs for employment and food security.) In the absence of hard figures, it’s hard to take exception or trust any of this. That said, it’s refreshing to see that the party has promised a special focus on one of India’s most substantial and most invisible minorities, the disabled; gives considerable thought to India’s energy security; and commits to a more transparent approach to land acquisition and an ambitious program of rapid urbanization. (The party’s romantic notion of the Indian village leads it, though, to the terrible neologism “Rurban,” or the supply of “urban amenities to our rural areas, while retaining the soul of the village.”) Foreign investors looking to be part of the Indian growth story will want to know what the manifesto envisages for them. This is one of the few areas where the manifesto takes a coherent “for this/not for that” point of view. In order to protect India’s millions of small grocery shops and traders, the party will not allow foreign direct investment in the retail sector, which the previous government had approved. So Wal-Mart Stores
Inc. and other such large multinational retail companies would have no place in a BJP-ruled India. Further, to those used to reading BJP manifestos down the years, what the document says isn’t half as revealing as what it doesn’t. The Telegraph of Kolkata published a comprehensive graphic that shows how the current document tries to clean up all the disturbing majoritarian murmurs and prejudices of manifestos past. Their retention would have shifted the debate away from the party’s focus on the present government’s record on corruption and its promise of a “Modi sarkar” -- a Modi government. Even in a text so generic, however, something striking about the party’s particular (and often peculiar) vision of India seeps through. The manifestos of all political parties in India are generalized mission statements, but only the BJP’s also manages to be a fable. The document begins with a fourpage preface by the chairman of the committee that drafted it, the party veteran Murli Manohar Joshi. Joshi is a sonorous (and often soporific) thinker, whose own website says he is “internationally known for his erudition, scholarship and statesmanship.” He tells in fast-forward a story of Indian history, of the great religious and scientific glories of India throughout antiquity. As he sees it, “India was a land of abundance, prosperity, affluence, a land of sharing and caring living in perfect harmony and peace with the nature.” Then, successive waves of disaster struck. India was overrun, and in due course ruined, first by British colonialism (or “the Britishers,” as the manifesto charmingly puts it) and then, after independence, by the Congress Party, which blindly imitated the West instead of trying to “reconstruct the political
US needs to plan for the day after an Iran deal Washington Post david h Petraeus and vance serchuK
Advocates of the effort to reach a negotiated settlement with Iran over its illicit nuclear activities have emphasized the benefits an agreement could bring by peacefully and verifiably barring Tehran from developing nuclear weapons. Skeptics, meanwhile, have warned of the risks of a “bad deal,” under which Iran’s capabilities are not sufficiently rolled back. Largely absent from the debate, however, has been a fuller consideration of the strategic implications a nuclear agreement could have on the U.S. position in the Middle East. Such an assessment must begin by considering the consequences of lifting the majority of sanctions on Iran — and of Iran resuming normal trade with the world’s major economies. This prospect is what provides our strongest leverage to persuade the Iranian government to abandon key elements of its nuclear program. But lifting sanctions would also lead to the economic empowerment of a government that is the leading state sponsor of terrorism. Indeed, even under crippling sanctions, Iran has managed to provide robust support to extremist proxies as part of its broader geopolitical agenda across the Middle East and beyond — activities antithetical to U.S. interests and to those of our closest allies. It is possible that a nuclear deal would pave the way to a broader detente in Iran’s relations with the United States and its neighbors. It is, however, more plausible that removing sanctions would strengthen Tehran’s ability to project malign influence in its nearabroad, including Syria, Lebanon, Iraq, the Arabian peninsula and the Palestinian territories. Rather than marking the end of our long struggle with Iran, therefore, a successful nuclear deal could result in the United States and our partners in the
Middle East facing a better-resourced and, in some respects, more dangerous adversary. This does not mean we should abandon diplomacy with Tehran. Preventing Iran from acquiring nuclear weapons ought to be our foremost priority, and a diplomatic agreement that truly bolts the door against that danger is worth potential downsides. Moreover, the alternative to successful diplomacy — military action — carries its own set of costs and risks to regional stability and the global economy. And military action holds less promise for decisively ending the nuclear threat than does a good negotiated accord. But we need to recognize there are genuine trade-offs involved in even the best possible nuclear deal — and start laying the groundwork for mitigating them. To that end, five actions should be considered. First, it is imperative to make clear there can be no true reconciliation between Iran and the United States, regardless of the outcome of the nuclear talks, without a comprehensive change in Iran’s destabilizing regional behavior. Such a message — delivered publicly, unambiguously and consistently — would help eliminate the corrosive, and inaccurate, perception that Washington is so eager to disengage from the Middle East that it would accept Iranian hegemony there. Second, the United States should intensify dialogue with our Arab and Israeli allies to develop a common understanding about how to contend with an economically strengthened Iran in the wake of a nuclear deal. Because sanctions relief would bolster Tehran’s capability to train, finance and equip its terrorist proxies, we and our partners in the region must start preparing to intensify our efforts to identify, disrupt and dismantle these networks. Third, the United States needs to look hard at its position on Syria, arguably now the central front in a broader struggle for primacy in the
Middle East. Recent reports that the Obama administration has been considering various forms of increased support to the Syrian opposition — including providing a limited number of strategically significant weapons systems — are encouraging. These reports, if true, would reflect recognition that a much more robust, focused and well-resourced effort is required to reverse the Assad regime’s current battlefield momentum, which it has achieved in large part due to Iranian help. This points to a fourth conclusion: Rather than freeing Washington to reduce the U.S. footprint in the Middle East and focus elsewhere, a nuclear agreement with Tehran is likely to compel us to deepen our military, diplomatic and intelligence presence in the region in order to help partners there balance against increasing Iranian power. A variety of steps should be pursued to this end: approval of additional military capabilities sought by Arab partners and Israel; a renewed initiative to integrate Gulf Cooperation Council countries’ air and ballistic missile defenses; maritime and air exercises to demonstrate U.S. and partner capabilities in the region; and sustaining, if not augmenting, existing infrastructure and force posture there. Fifth, we need to start planning for what a new sanctions regime would look like in the wake of a deal. While a surge of money to Tehran is inevitable as nuclear-linked sanctions are lifted, sanctions related to terrorism should remain in place and new ones considered to keep Iranian companies, banks and individuals tied to destabilizing regional activities from reaping a windfall. Planning for such sanctions must be undertaken in advance of a nuclear agreement. David H. Petraeus is a former director of the CIA and a former commander of U.S. Central Command. Vance Serchuk is an adjunct senior fellow at the Center for a New American Security.
WORLD VIEW 09
and economic institutions of India as a continuum of civilizational consciousness.” (One interprets this as meaning India should have sought a direction rooted in a more indigenous worldview.) If it comes to power, we are told, the BJP will try to provide just such a continuum, by working to “reorient the polity in consonance with those strong points of Indian psyche which will be the engine for our future glory.” Isn’t this language much more interesting, and revealing, than the bland statements on development and empowerment? (Many would say, by the way, that Joshi tried once before to reorient the errant Indian polity. A physicist by training, he was accused, while serving a minister in the last BJP government, of orchestrating a campaign to “Indianize” school education and introduce his own pet subjects, such as “Vedic astrology,” in higher education.) The emphases of this preface lead directly to what is most problematic about the manifesto: the BJP’s extremely convoluted, if not completely tautological, view of what constitutes citizenship and Indianness in a 21st-century world (and indeed in the depths of history). The manifesto claims that the BJP stands, above all, for the idea of “India First” and explains, in Joshi’s tortuous syntax, the consequences of this idea for state policy and conflict resolution: India First simply means nurturing and protecting all the elements, which India is made of. It does not exclude anyone or anything -- it only includes everything and everyone, which India is made of. It is complete India; without exclusion, without exception. It also means that whatever is in the interest of India will be in the interest of all the elements that India is made up
of, including its citizens. Really? Any student of the relationship between democracy and nationalism would know that on scores of occasions in the past century, nationstates have, often violently, targeted certain classes of their citizens (whether ethnic or economic) for their dissenting positions, or for somehow not being nationalistic enough. These conflicts require delicate negotiation and the state's commitment to the equality of all, not to a scale of civic virtue measured by a dedication to the “national interest” that must be continuously proved by its citizens. The state must set clear limits in determining “whatever is in the interest of India,” else “India First” is nothing but a cuddly term for totalitarianism. No matter how hard it tries to modernize, it seems the BJP cannot reorient itself to allow for a technical, and not emotive, definition of citizenship in its beloved Mother India. This incomplete understanding of a “complete India” allows critics of the party to continue treating its promises of good governance with the skepticism invited by its own past record and the role of its Great Leader in both large and small infringements of religious, personal and intellectual freedom. Whatever the merits of its manifesto, the BJP may come to be judged on its record on Indian personality -- which is implicit in its flawed idea of citizenship as well as of the enormous trust it puts (the manifesto’s final words are “Time for Change, Time for Modi”) in its unusual prime ministerial candidate. Chandrahas Choudhury, a novelist, is based in New Delhi. His novel "Arzee the Dwarf" is published by New York Review Books.
Women play vital role in Pakistani politics Centralasiaonline.Com Javed aziz Khan Pakistan's female politicians are playing an important role in the affairs of their parties and parliament, and are helping the country serve as an example not just to Muslim countries but to the rest of the world. "Female lawmakers and politicians have played an important role in political and parliamentary affairs over the last few decades," Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) leader Maryam Javed Gandapur told Central Asia Online. Pakistan had the Muslim world's first-ever female head of government, Benazir Bhutto, and its first-ever parliamentary speaker, Dr. Fahmida Mirza. Even before Bhutto, Fatima Jinnah, the younger sister of the nation's founder, Mohammad Ali Jinnah, played a significant role in the history of the 1950s and 1960s. "Female lawmakers and politicians have played an important role in political and parliamentary affairs over the last few decades," Gandapur told Central Asia Online. "Since Benazir Bhutto, a large number of women have stepped up to carry the flag of independence and of the fight for women's rights." Female politicians today Today, women actively participate in politics from Quetta and Karachi to Peshawar and Chitral. Hina Rabbani Khar served as foreign minister from 2011-2013, and a number of other female lawmakers sit in the federal and provincial cabinets. The Awami National Party (ANP) has the most seasoned female politician active today, Begum Nasim Wali Khan. She has played a key role in politics since the 1970s, when her spouse Abdul Wali Khan was in prison. Religious groups also have active female leaders. The daughter of former Jamat-e-Islami chief Qazi Hussain Ahmad, Samia Raheel Qazi, and the family members of Maulana Fazl-ur-Rehman are involved in politics and parliament. And the youngest female lawmaker, Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf's 26-year-old Ayesha Gulali, comes from the Pashtun belt, an area considered conservative.
Women: an inFluential Force Women have presented many gender equality bills, Gandapur said. And they have been very effective in their role as parliamentarians despite hurdles and limited space within their own parties, former lawmaker and senior female nationalist leader Bushra Gohar said. "It has been recorded that women have performed better than their male colleagues," Bushra, leader of the ANP's women's wing, said, adding that women have worked diligently on and raised critical matters concerning the public interest, brought up important legislation, defended party policies and positions and maintained quorums in the assemblies where they served. Pakistani improvement depends on both genders, some said, however. "Not only the female lawmakers but the male members of the national and provincial assemblies and Senate of Pakistan need to play a more important role in bringing the country out of crisis," Musarrat Ahmedzeb, a parliamentarian from Swat, told Central Asia Online. increasing Women's representation Women gained political strength in the 2002 general elections when the law mandated that the National Assembly reserve 60 of its 342 seats for women. Though many observers endorse the idea of setting aside seats, some would like to reform the system for assigning such seats. The parties are allowed to seat a certain number of female MPs who do not have to stand in elections. Those women lack the benefits of the grass-roots interaction experienced by women who do win elections, Lahore writer, columnist and university teacher Yasmin Ali told Central Asia Online. "My own view is that [all] women occupying reserved seats should win elections for them," Bushra said. Unless that happens, some observers question the true extent of female political power. "Women's participation in politics bears the hard irony of significant participation combined with negligible say in [political matters]," Sumeera Ali, a Lahore-based journalist, said. "We see shiny faces with political backgrounds but with less participation in the corridors of power."
Friday, 11 April, 2014
(EUROBONDS ISSUE ON INTERNATIONAL MARKET)
(KASB, DJM AND TIME SECURITIES)
KSE brokers found involved in irregularities
AMERICANS TOP LIST OF INVESTORS WITH 59-61 PER CENT BUYING
KARACHI: The brokerage houses at the Karachi Stock Exchange (KSE) are involved in, what regulators from the Securities and Exchange Commission of Pakistan (SECP) said, different anomalies ranging from not maintaining segregation of clients' assets to miscalculation of net capital balance. The KASB Securities Limited, DJM Securities (Private) Limited and Time Securities (Private) Limited are the market participants taken to task by the Securities Market Division of the SECP for, what the apex regulator said, their non-compliance with the regulatory framework. According to a statement, last month in March the commission took enforcement actions and penalised the said brokerage houses. "Subsequent to the onsite inspections, enforcement actions were taken against three brokerage houses of the KSE," the SECP said. It said that a penalty of Rs 0.5 million was imposed on KASB securities primarily for its failure to maintain segregation of the clients' assets. While the DJM Securities was penalised with Rs 0.1 million for the irregularities the SECP identified in the company's calculation of net capital balance. A warning letter was issued to Time Securities in the same context. In addition, the SECP issued 12 orders for the late filing of returns of beneficial ownership. STAFF REPORT
Borrowing to cost Pakistan 7.25pc and 8.25pc in 5-10yrs KARACHI ISMAIL DILAWAR
nveSTOrS from the United States appeared to be the largest subscribers as the dollar-hungry government of Pakistan re-entered the international money market after, what the analysts said, seven long years through floating the dollar and euro bonds which were oversubscribed by offshore investors to the tune of $ 2 billion against $ 500 million targeted initially by islamabad. The economic observers are all praise for the PML-n-led government which has finally borrowed, through the issuance of dollar bonds/eurobonds, the much-needed $ 2 billion from the international market. The fund-raising, the analysts believe, marked the country’s return to the international money market after a gap of more than seven years. “This is the highest amount Pakistan government has raised through dollar bonds in one attempt,” viewed Topline analyst Zeeshan afzal. The bond issue, maturity period for which ranges from 5 to 10 years, was oversub-
PM calls on EXIM Bank of China president
scribed by what the analysts said many times against the $500 million target islamabad had set initially. Of the total bonds issued, 59 to 61 percent are said to have been bought by american investors depending on the issue’s maturity period. “Testament of investor confidence can be seen from the bidding size,” added afzal. noman Khan, Shajar research analyst, believes that the eurobond development appears to be one of the major stimuli for the country’s improving external account. “Foreign investors reposing confidence in Pakistan revival story has culminated into $ 2 billion bond placement,” the analyst added. The economic observers attribute the improved investors’ perception about Pakistan mainly to the PML-n-led government’s reform process, the international Monetary Fund (iMF) programme and the resultant improvement in the crises-hit country’s economic outlook. The issue is said to have fetched the dollar-hungry Pakistan, which already maintains “best performing” outstanding eurobonds worth $ 1.5 billion, around $ 1 billion from five-year maturity bonds at 7.25 percent. While the balance $ 1 billion
was borrowed from foreign investors through auctioning 10-year sovereign guarantees (bonds) at 8.25 percent. The fixed borrowing rates, afzal estimated, were higher than the benchmark US treasury bonds of five and 10 years maturities, respectively, by 558 and 556 basis points. The analysts are all praise for the pricing of 10-year bond that, they opine, was better than the peer countries with comparable rating. “Pakistan has been able to raise at tighter spreads as Ghana 2023 whose rating of ‘B’ one notch better than Pakistan, is trading at 8.83 percent while Zambia 2024, whose credit rating is two notches above Pakistan, is yielding 8.57 percent,” said afzal. The economic observers think that its return to global bond market would once again put Pakistan on the radar of global investors whose love for frontier markets is rising. The new deal, they said, would also help Pakistan have a better prospect in terms of upcoming 3G telecom license auction besides auguring well for the government’s privatization move. also, the cash-strapped country would see its improving currency gaining more strength against the US dollar
US, Pakistan discuss plan to expand trade in next 5 years
BOAO: Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif met EXIM Bank of China President Lui Ruogu on the sidelines of Boao Asia Forum 2014. During the meeting, financing of infrastructure and energy sector projects in Pakistan were discussed. Chinese companies plan to make an investment of about US $ 32 billion in Pakistan for the next five years.The prime minister said this investment would give boost to the economy of Pakistan. Fast-tracking the progress in financing of these projects will enable Chinese companies to initiate projects in time, the PM added. The EXIM Bank of China president assured support and agreed that the financing process should be undertaken at a faster pace. APP
Finance Minister ishaq Dar and US UnderSecretary for economic Growth catherine novelli held an initial discussion about elements that could be included in a joint plan to expand trade and investment flows over the next five years. The discussions on the joint plan at the economic and Finance Working Group meeting follow up on President Barack Obama’s and Prime Minister nawaz Sharif's meeting in October last year. With the private sector leading the way, both sides will look at ways to implement the recommendations of the US chamber of commerce's US-Pakistan Business council and identify con-
crete steps in advancing the commercial relationship, the State Department said after the meeting. The United States and Pakistan will hold more indepth discussions about the joint plan at the Trade and investment Framework agreement (TiFa) council meeting in May 2014. in the context of this joint plan, both sides agreed to continue engagement on a US-Pakistan Bilateral investment Treaty and scheduling a third U.S.-Pakistan Business Opportunities conference. Dar also met with Deputy Secretary William J. Burns to discuss a range of strategic and economic issues. as part of these discussions, Minister Dar and Under Secretary novelli co-chaired the U.S.-Pakistan economic and Finance Working Group on Wednesday.
that nowadays is trading at rs 97 to rs 100 on the interbank and open markets. Khan of Shajar research said the issue of eurobonds would strengthen road for the struggling country to recover from a deeper economic crisis. coupled with inflows of $ 1.5 billion Pakistan Development Fund and $522 million as third tranche of iMF’s eFF, the materialization of $ 2 billion eurobond funds would push the country’s dollar reserves to a, relatively, stable position. Having seen its foreign exchange reserves dipping to a record low of $7.6 billion in February this year, the cashstrapped country saw its FX reserves having inflated by 32 percent to $ 10 billion by the end of last month (March). “This implies strengthening of import cover to around 2.9 months from 2.2 months in Feb’14,” said the analyst. He said that in the recent time the signs of economic recovery have gained strength as the country’s balance of payment situation improved. “Materialization of inflows can potentially accelerate the government’s economic recovery drive by positively impacting other macro-economic variables,” said Khan. Topline analyst afzal dubs Pakistan’s $ 1.5 billion outstanding eurobonds as one of the “best performing bonds” in the international market. “The yields of briskly traded 2016 and 2017 bonds have declined by 353bps and 288bps in 2013 to date,” he said. a break up shows that Pakistan would see its outstanding eurobonds of $500 million maturity in 2016 at 5.81 percent, $750 million in 2017 at 6.18 percent and $300 million in 2036 at 9.25 percent.
Debt servicing erodes $229m of dollar reserves KARACHI: The country’s foreign exchange reserves declined to $9.713 billion during the week ended on april 4, said the central bank on Thursday. The decrease in the muchneeded dollar reserves, the State Bank said, was attributed to the repayments the heavily-indebted country had to make to fulfil its international financial obligations. During the week under review the State Bank’s reserves were recorded at $4.943 billion while that of the commercial banks at $ 4.770 billion. “During the week, SBP’s liquid FX reserves decreased by $229 million to $4.943 billion compared to $5.172 million in the previous week,” the bank said. The decrease was due to external debt servicing of $142 million, including $109 million payment to iMF on account of SBa, and other official payments, the central bank added. it said there was no major inflow from multilateral and bilateral sources during the week. STAFF REPORT
MCB PMI FOR MARCH 2014 AT 65.13 CONTINUES TO SHOW POSITIVE TREND cOnOMic activity in the manufacturing sector expanded in March 2014 but at a slower pace than January 2014, say the company executives in the McB Purchasing Managers index (PMi). The McB PMi reading was registered at 65.13 for the month of March2014. a reading above 50 shows expansion in the manufacturing sector and economy. new Orders and Production indices reported a value of 71.3 and 69.2 respectively. The employment index registered a reading of 60.2. The Prices Paid and Prices received indices showed the readings of 61.7 and 62.3 respectively.
WHAT RESPONDENTS SAY
Our special question for this month was “Where do you see interest rate and inflation in the remaining year- increase, decrease, no change? and Why” n “inflation: Decrease; interest rate: Unchanged. reasons: appreciation of PKr against USD by 6% to 7% will reduce fuel / energy cost subsequently will lower production cost. Though, interest rate may see reduction in line with lower inflation. nevertheless, on conservative side interest rate is assumed to remain unchanged.” (Food& commodity) n "Decrease due to decreasing trend of USD/ PKr " (Textile) n “They are expected to go down in future on account of major economic activities that will start from this year.” (Tobacco) n “Status-quo is expected on account of recent inflow of foreign funding and expected funding in future.” (Fertilizer)
“it is expected that interest and inflation will decrease on account of appreciation of PKr vs USD. Further Foreign investment is also expected in coming years which will result in further reduction of USD against PKr hence the interest rate and inflation are expected to decrease.” (Fertilizer) " The indicators clearly show that the rate of interest and inflation will not undergo significant changes (Food & commodity) “almost all major economic indicators have moved in the desired direction over the past few months. inflation has come down and it will likely to reduce slightly further. The fiscal authority has been able to borrow long term and rupee has appreciated against the US dollar. above all, the foreign exchange reserves of SBP have increased noticeably.” (electrical Machinery) “no change in interest rate and inflation.” (Steel industry) “no change in interest rate but slight decrease in inflation.” (Steel industry) NEW ORDERS
new Orders index registered a reading of 71.3 in March. This represents growth in the new orders index for the 2nd consecutive reading but at slightly slower pace than January. PRODUCTION
Production index registered a value of 69.2 in March. The index value showed no change compared to the previous reading.
profit margins. The survey’s prices indicator suggest decline in cost pressure with prices paid indicator dropping by 9.7 points and prices received by 5.3 points since January’s reading. CONCLUSION
McB PMi employment index registered a reading of 60.2 in March compared to January’s value of 59.3.The McB PMi survey shows the sustained broad based uptick in the employment due to improved economic activity.
The inventories index recorded a number of 63.5. The March index shows a drop of 3.5from index value of 67.0 in January. This indicates that respondents are reporting expanding inventory level but at slower rate than January to meet the consumer demand.
companies reported slow delivery but faster than previous month as the index value dropped from 60.4 in January to 53.9 in March for the 2nd reading of McB PMi. a reading below 50 indicates faster deliveries and cooling down of the economy, while a reading above 50 indicates slower deliveries and growing economy.
in March the McB Prices index registered a reading of 61.7 and 62.3 in prices paid and prices received respectively. This indicates that companies received higher prices for their finished products than the price paid for the manufacturing materials thus increasing their
March McB PMi indicates a slight slowdown in the manufacturing sector but it is still growing at a decent pace. new orders index reading of 71.3 indicates healthy demand in the near future, with higher number of survey respondents replying increase in new orders. Therefore, purchasing managers should look at the inventory levels which dropped from a previous reading of 67 to 63.5 (-3.5) and decide whether they can handle the increase in demand. Production level remained same as previous reading (69.2) indicating that manufacturers used their inventories during January –March period to meet the new orders. The employment index of 60.2 shows manufacturing industry in Pakistan added more jobs than the lay-offs. The supplier deliveries index dropped 6.5 points which shows slow deliveries but faster than the previous reading in January. This implies ease in supply bottlenecks and a slight slowdown in the economic activity. On the price front we can clearly see the price pressure cooling down as the prices paid index value dropped from 71.4 to 61.7 and price received dropped from 67.6 to 62.3. The survey showed few industries paid lower prices for input materials due to rupee appreciation but hesitated to pass that on to the consumers.
Friday, 11 April, 2014
HaGaR tHE HoRRIblE
Today lacks excitement -- but that might be just what you need. Try not to wish for an adrenaline rush, as you may get a lot more trouble than you had hoped. Sometimes boredom is optimal.
Your sense of fun is enhanced today, and you should be able to get others to join you even if they're depressed or introverted. Your ability to cajole others into smiling is almost magical.
You can't quite reach your sweetie, your kids or someone else who's usually on your wavelength. Try not to worry about it too much, as you may find it easier in just a few days.
Communication is great today, so it's the best time for you to dive into complex negotiations or to try to express that odd set of feelings you've got for someone or something.
Your financial situation needs some attention. That could mean almost anything from checking your balance online to re-examining your attitude toward retirement. You know what to do.
You unlock some kind of achievement that warms your heart -- and the good energy that comes with it is extra-sweet! Your amazing energy helps you capitalize on this new development.
You are feeling extremely meticulous today -- so much so that you may end up going over your work two or three times just for fun! It's a good day to catch other people's mistakes.
You are great with secrets -- so much so that you know instinctively whom to trust with them. Now is a good time to bring someone into the inner circle. You know who it is, so get to it!
You need to avoid the temptation to tell off your boss -or someone else in a position of power over you. It's a great day for working solo, actually, though you may not have that option.
Today is all about little details -- you are their master, and you can easily bend them to your will. Make a plan and stick to it, as your ability to deal with interruptions is nearly flawless.
Work is hard today -- mostly thanks to the competition, or maybe a fickle customer. You can resolve this, but you need to be careful about new legal agreements, as they may not work for you.
You need to deal with someone in a new relationship -- maybe with you, maybe with a sweetie, or maybe with a new employer. They aren't giving you what they need, so gently remind them you exist.
How to play fill in all the squares in the grid so that each row, column and each of the squares contains all the digits. the object is to insert the numbers in the boxes to satisfy only one condition: each row, column and 3x3 box must contain the digits 1 through 9 exactly once.
juice lichen louse palace pall price pride retail shape stack summer swarm taffy taken tame valve water wheel
cHEss black TO PlaY aND MaTE IN TwO MOVEs
2 aspirant (7) 3 lioness (born free in kenya) (4) 4 sinful (6) 5 women's underwear (8) 6 slow and apathetic (5) 7 charging of interest on advances (12) 8 ultimate event making a situation unbearable (3,4,5) 13 someone copying the behaviour of another (8) 16 of little significance (7) 17 stir — can (6) 19 lawful (5) 21 shrewd (4)
6 5 4 3 2
1...Nf3+ 2.gxf3 exf3 *
1 garden pink with clusters of vivid flowers (5,7) 9 acts as compère (5) 10 business organisation (7) 11 remaining (4) 12 in a proper manner (8) 14 italian sausage (6) 15 high-mindedness (6) 18 alone (8) 20 tender-hearted (4) 22 is erect (anag) (7) 23 sit on a throne (5) 24 public house (found in a desert?) (8,4)
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Friday, 11 April, 2014
GREEN TEA IMPROVES MEMORY AND COULD HELP TREAT DEMENTIA: RESEARCH
LANGUAGE IS A 'BIOLOGICAL INSTINCT': STUDY Certain aspects appear to be shared across languages and might stem from linguistic principles that are active in all human brains, study claims
Green tea has always been hailed as the healthiest hot drink of choice, but new research has found it can also be good for your mind. Scientists claim green tea enhances several cognitive functions, in particular our working memory. The new findings suggest that green tea could be used to treat dementia and other psychiatric disorders. The new research, from the University of Basel, found that green tea extract increases the brain's effective connectivity. Scientists at the university saw significant improvements in working memory tasks after people had consumed green tea. The new research, from the University of Basel, found that green tea extract increases the brain's effective connectivity. Scientists at the university saw significant improvements in working memory tasks after people had consumed green tea. The findings suggest green tea could be used to help treat memory loss caused by psychiatric disorders or as part of recovery. Past studies have shown the health benefits that come from drinking green tea, but the neural mechanisms behind the effect were previously unknown. Volunteers were given a drink with green tea extract before being given working memory tasks to solve. By monitoring brain activity through MRI scans, scientists could see an increased connectivity between the parietal and the frontal cortex of the brain. ‘Our findings suggest that green tea might increase the short-term synaptic plasticity of the brain’, co-author Prof. Borgwardt said. The results of the study were published in the journal Psychopharmacology. AGENCIES
SMARTPHONE USERS TO INSTALL SEPARATE FACEBOOK APP FOR MESSAGES
ANY animals can communicate effectively with one another but humans are unique in our ability to acquire language. Scientists have long questioned how we are able to do this and now a new study suggests that the sound patterns of human languages are the product of an innate biological instinct – much like birdsong. The U.S. research says that babies are born with the basic fundamental knowledge of language, which sheds light on whether nature or nurture is responsible for speech in humans. While languages differ from each other in many ways, certain aspects appear to be shared across them and these aspects might stem from linguistic principles that are active in all human brains, according to the study. ‘The results suggest that, the sound patterns of human languages are the product of an inborn biological instinct, very much like birdsong,’ said Professor Iris Berent of Northeastern University in Boston, who co-authored the study with a research team from the International School of Advanced Studies in Italy. Many languages have similar sound-combinations that occur at the beginning of words, such as ‘bl’, while few languages have words that start with ‘lb’. Linguists have suggested that such patterns occur because human brains are biased to favour syllables such as ‘bla’ over ‘lba’ and past research has shown that adult speakers display such preferences, even if their native language has no words resembling either bla or lba. To understand where this knowledge comes
FIVE ODD HABITS OF YOUR CAT- EXPLAINED The more time you spend with your cat, the more you'll probably start to notice-she's got some habits hard to decipher. here are the five most common odd cat behaviours owners wonder about and there explanation:
Facebook will no longer let users send and receive private messages within its main smartphone app, and will require that users install a separate messaging app, the Internet company said on Wednesday. Facebook began notifying users in France, England and several other European countries on Wednesday that beginning in a couple of weeks they will need to install the company's standalone Messenger app in order to send and receive messages. Facebook plans to eventually require that users in all countries install the Messenger app, spokesman Derick Mains said, though he could not provide a specific timeframe for the change. The move is intended to ensure that users have a consistent and high-quality experience, a Facebook spokesman told a foreign news agency. The free, standalone Messenger app is faster than the messaging service that's currently built into Facebook's primary mobile app. Facebook users can also access more features in the Messenger app, such as the ability to make voice phone calls. "We have built a fast and reliable messaging experience through Messenger and now it makes sense for us to focus all our energy and resources on that experience," the company said in a statement. Facebook faces increasing competition from a new crop of fast-growing mobile messaging apps, such as Snapchat and Line. It stunned observers by announcing plans in February to buy the popular WhatsApp messaging app for $19 billion. Forcing users to install a separate messaging app on their phones could help boost the popularity of Facebook Messenger, but could also cause a backlash if consumers view Facebook's move as heavy-handed. A post on the technology blog Mashable on Wednesday was titled "11 Reasons why Pulling Messenger From Facebook Mobile is a Terrible Idea," and many people took to Twitter to post critical comments about the change. Facebook, the world's No.1 social networking service with 1.2 billion users, has increasingly moved to develop a catalogue of standalone apps to complement its main app. In January, Facebook launched Paper, a photo-heavy news-reading app that has earned positive reviews. AGENCIES
from and whether it is a universal linguistic principle or the sum of experience, the team looked carefully at how young babies perceive different types of words. They used a silent and non-invasive technique called near-infrared spectroscopy to examine how the oxygenation of the brain cortex – the very first centimetres of grey matter just below the scalp – changes in time, to look at the brain reactions of newborn babies who listened to ‘good’ and ‘bad’ sounds such as ‘blif’ and ‘lbif’.
KNEADING: From time to time you may catch your cat doing something a little strange: kneading. This occurs when your kitten rhythmically alternates her paws, pushing in and out, usually against something soft. While no one is 100% sure why cats take on this behavior, there are a few theories. For starters, baby kittens will knead instinctively when they're young to help stimulate their mom's milk production. In this way, some people think cats continue kneading as they get older because the action reminds them of the rewards of nursing. Other theories for why cats do this include that it's their way of showing affection, it helps them limber up after a nap or prepare a soft, comfy spot to lay down in, or that it's an easy way to scent-mark their territory. CHEWING ON PLANTS: Dangling leaves aside, some cats chew plants because they find comfort in the act, or as a way to get your attention. Of course too much of a good thing can be bad. Cats who eat excessive grass or plants usually end up throwing up. No one's quite sure if cats do this on purpose to help
bring up hairballs, or if it's just a coincidence.
The scientists saw that the newborns reacted differently to the two types of words in a similar way to adults. Young infants have not learned any words yet and do not even babble, yet they still share a sense of how words should sound with adults. The researchers believe that this finding shows that we are born with the basic, foundational knowledge about the sound pattern of human languages. The study was published in the journal PNAS. ONLINE
PEOPLE REMEMBER THE PAST WITH ROSE-TINTED GLASSES - AND IT'S GOOD FOR OUR HEALTH: RESEARCHERS
FACE RUBBING: Your cat's cheeks contain glands that he uses to deposit his own unique scent. By rubbing his furry little cheeks on everything he sees, your cat is actually being quite territorial, marking off what he considers to be "his" in your home. BRINGING GIFTS: Cats are natural hunters, which we already know, and so it only makes sense that if you have an outdoor cat she will, from time-to-time, be stalking some prey. And you know how you like to bring your furry best friend home a treat every now and then to let her know how much you love her? Well some experts believe that dead mouse on your doorstep could be her way of telling you just how much she cares about you. ROLLING: have this ever happened to you: You approach your kitten in the hallway to say hello, and she immediately throws herself on the ground, rolls onto her back and exposes her tummy to you? If it's a familiar scenario, be happy. Cats who roll over and expose their stomachs are actually relaxed and comfortable, calm and content. When she does this, your cat is showing you that she loves and trusts you-and probably wouldn't mind some scratches at the moment, either. PETMD
It’s often said that hindsight is a wonderful thing. But a study says it might only be wonderful when you remember the right things. Researchers say you are more likely to focus on positive events from your past than negative ones, and even if you have a bad memory you'll try to give it a positive spin. In the study, published in the journal Memory by psychologist Timothy Ritchie and his colleagues, 562 participants from 10 cultures around the world were asked to recall events in their life. They were then asked to rate the emotions they felt at the time, and the emotions of the event they felt in the present. Researchers found that positive memories were remembered more clearly than negative ones. And even unpleasant events had been given a positive spin. This means we are more likely to look back on our past with rose-tinted glasses. The study's results highlight something known as the fading affect bias (FAB). It has been researched before, but this is one of the first studies to sample people from a wide range of cultures. The study goes on to suggest that FAB ‘may foster recovery from negative life events and promote the retention of positive emotions.’ It is also the first research to show that FAB is a universal phenomenon across different cultures. People studied included Ghanaian students and older German citizens, with the latter asked to recollect the fall of the Berlin Wall. The researchers stress that their study is not extensive, however, and FAB may occur for different reasons across the globe. VIA DAILY MAIL
Friday, 11 April, 2014
AbrArul HAq releAsed After visA trouble At dubAi Airport F AGENCIES
AMOUS pop singer and Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) leader, Abrar ul Haq was stopped by the authorities at Dubai airport over an issue with his visa. Haq said he was only stopped for a few minutes. “There was a single digit difference in my travel documents and visa. I was only stopped for 15-20 minutes.” The singer added that he had left the airport and was at his hotel. Abrarul Haq further said he is a guest of the royal family and came to Dubai to attend a dinner
siddHArtH grew up wAtcHing ‘umAr sHArif’, ‘dHoop kinArAy’
reception and to perform in a show. Earlier, Abrarul Haq was detained upon his arrival at Dubai Airport for not having a valid UAE visa on his Pakistani passport. According to reports the singer had traveled to Dubai with the wrong passport. After reports of Abrarul Haq being detained, a team from the Pakistani Embassy reached the airport and engaged with Dubai authorities to resolve the issue. However, his media coordinator said that there was only one-letter spelling difference in Abrar’s name on his passport and visa due to which he was stopped at the airport.
rAnbir, rAnveer Are tHe next superstArs, sAys AksHAy kumAr
ARIJ FATIMA’S TWO-MONTH-OLD MARRIAGE COLLAPSES AGENCIES
While actors usually refrain from praising their younger contemporaries publicly, Akshay Kumar lavished praise on Ranbir Kapoor and Ranveer Singh at a recently held event. At the trailer launch of Fugly, the actor said, "People like Ranbir and Ranveer are doing very good work and in my eyes they are the next superstars and they are superstars actually." He also said that newcomers today are very smart and don't need anyone's support to succeed. "When we were new in the industry, we needed support but newcomers of today don't need our support. They are so fit, they are so good, they are mentally so balanced and they are professionally much better than us. They are very tech savvy, they know what they want, what they don't, we don't need to teach them as they already know everything. So the only support they need is that of their families," he stated at the do. AGENCIES
Model and actress Arij Fatima of Meri Beti fame shocked her fans with a status update on Facebook, in which she has announced her divorce after only a two month long wedding. Her facebook status says, “It was a mutual decision and why stick with a decision which you know won’t work out in the long run.” Sources confirmed that she had indeed gotten divorce from her husband Faraz and was “trying to make the best of the situation.” Her status update was positive and we have to give credit to the star for being so forthright. Their Nikkah ceremony took place on January 5 2014 and they looked rather charming together. But divorce is indeed a personal matter and if they’ve decided then so be it. The exact reason behind this sudden end to their almost three month relationship is still unknown. Arij recently won the best female actor award at Hum Awards for her performance in Ek Pagal Si Larki.
Siddharth Malhotra, the new sensation in BTown, had one of the dream debuts in the industry with director Karan Johar and Dharma Productions. These two labels definitely guarantee success in Indian films. And with his second film Hasee Tou Phasee, the actor has proved that he can act and is here to stay for a long time. Siddharth will show his dark side in his next – ‘Ek Villian’. He is very excited and nervous for this project. But you have to wait a bit to watch Siddharth in action as the movie is slated to release in late June, 2014. In an interview, he talked about his life before movies. You will be amazed to know that the actor actually grew up watching Pakistan’s legendry standup comedian Umar Sharif and classic dramas like ‘Dhoop Kinaray’. “My mother Brinda Malhotra is a housewife. She used to be a big fan of Yash Chopra. That was my initial impression of films. While sailing we’d watch films on the VCR. She’d watch Pakistani plays. Umar Sharif was her favorite actor. So Yash Chopra films and Umar Sharif’s plays were huge influences. We’d watch serious Pakistani plays too like Dhoop Kinaray,” Siddharth said. AGENCIES
scArlett finAlly knows wHAt sHe needs from A relAtionsHip
ATIF ASLAM’S LIVE
PERFORMANCE ROCKS DALLAS Famous Pakistani singer Atif Aslam and a Bollywood playback singer Shalmali Kholgade presented an electrifying musical night, at Fair Park Hall in Dallas Downtown. Though, the event was attended by men, women and children, however a major portion in attendees were young boys and girls, who thoroughly enjoyed the musical festivity. Shalmali, who is known for being a playback singer in India, entertained with her vocals and dance performances which brought everyone on their feet. Atif Aslam hit the stage after her performance and captivated the audience with his popular numbers including “Tu jane na”,
“Kuch is tarah”, “Tera honay laga hun”, “Who Lamhe”, “Tere bin main kaisey jiya”, “Lay ja tou mujhe” and a number of his other songs. He also performed with the popular Dallas singer Ali Parvez Mehandi, who is son of famous Pakistani ghazal maestro Parvez Mehdi. Their performance brought the youth into their feet. To see them perform from close, people kept breaching the security circle and the young enthusiasts kept contesting with security personnel. All the attendees enjoyed the evening very much and their continuous efforts to sneak into closer position made it even more enjoyable. AGENCIES
Actress Scarlett Johansson says she has discovered the things that matter to her the most in a relationship. The 29-year-old actress, who had a string of high-profile relationships in the past, was married to Hollywood heartthrob Ryan Reynolds for two years. The couple called it quits in 2011. "I feel I know now more of what I need in a relationship, what I want in a relationship. And I know I have more tools to communicate, not just with my partner, but with myself," Johansson said. "That`s not necessarily any reflection of who I was married to or what was happening in my marriage, but really where I was in my life," she added. The blonde beauty is currently engaged to French journalist Romain Dauriac. The couple are said to be expecting their first child. AGENCIES
ellen degeneres' oscAr selfie mAy be wortH $1 b Ellen Degeneres' Oscar selfie that featured A-List celebs like Bradley Cooper, Jennifer Lawrence, Julia Roberts, Brad Pitt, Meryl Streep, Kevin Spacey may be worth 1 billion dollars. Global advertising and marketing behemoth, Publicis' CEO Maurice Levy has claimed that the picture, which crashed social networking site Twitter for while, could be placed between 800 million and 1 billion dollars, The Hollywood Reporter reported. The picture was the most retweeted picture and even broke the record of Barack Obama's picture that he tweeted after his presidential win. AGENCIES
14 SPORTS KIRSTEN LOOKS FORWARD TO FRESH DAREDEVILS START
Friday, 11 April, 2014
Associates to get a shot at Test cricket A
SPORTS DESK Daredevils was the only IPL franchise to not retain any players ahead of the 2014 IPL auction. There were a few strong candidates for retention, like Virender Sehwag, Kevin Pietersen, David Warner and Mahela Jayawardene, but none were held on to. At the auction, Daredevils used their three right-to-match cards to buy back Pietersen, who was later named captain, and domestic batsman Kedar Jadhav and spinner Shahbaz Nadeem. The only other player they have resigned, in a 23-member squad, is domestic pacer Siddarth Kaul. This, new coach Gary Kirsten has said, was because the franchise wanted to make a fresh start. "At the auction we made a decision to select a new squad and not retain anyone from last year. We are looking towards working with a new squad," Kirsten was quoted as saying by PTI. "Don't know whether it's a right decision or not, but that's what we have gone for." Pietersen was axed in February by England for reasons that are yet to be revealed, but Kirsten said he had got positive "feedback" on him from the England camp. "The feedback that I got from that management is that he has been an outstanding player and contributor to the team," he said. The team's focus now, in the lead-up to their first game against Royal Challengers Bangalore on April 17 in Sharjah, is on getting to know each other, Kirsten said. "The guys are looking forward to being together. Eight days before the match, it is an important time to connect. We've started connecting and getting to know each other." Kirsten is back in India as coach three years after ending his highly-successful stint with the national team. Coaching in the IPL, he said, would be more "intense". "The IPL requires a lot more intensity. It's a new challenge for me and I am looking forward to it. It's good to be back in India personally. I always knew that I was going to come back sometime. I love watching T20 cricket and haven't missed many matches."
ssociate teams will have the opportunity to play Test cricket, with the ICC Board approving an ICC Test Challenge, which will take place every four years between the lowest-ranked Test team and the winner of the ICC Intercontinental Cup. The inaugural Test Challenge will take place in 2018, with the intention of giving a context to the Intercontinental Cup. The Intercontinental Cup, spread out over two years, is a first-class tournament played among the Associate teams. According to the new proposal, the side ranked 10th in the ICC Test rankings on December 31, 2017, or at the conclusion of any series in progress at that time, will play two five-day Tests at home and two five-day Tests away against the winner of the upcoming Intercontinental Cup. The next Intercontinental Cup will run from 2015 to 2017, and the next edition from 2019 to 2021. The second ICC Test Challenge is scheduled for 2022. Since the Intercontinental Cup's inception in 2004, Ireland have won it four times, with Afghanistan and Scotland winning one each. The new proposal will give promising teams like Ireland a chance to take their international cricket to the next level. "The ICC Test Challenge now opens the door for Associate Members to play Test cricket and in doing so gives even greater context to the ICC Intercontinental Cup which will now be a pathway to Test cricket," ICC chief executive David Richardson, said at the end of the two-day board meeting in Dubai. The Test challenge is not, however, intended to be a relegation process for any Full Member who may be defeated in the contest. Full Member nations will not, it is understood, lose their status and voting rights and their FTP arrangements are also expected to be completed. The Board has agreed to set in place the Test challenge and its structure, format and principles will be passed through following at the ICC's annual conference. During the previous ICC Board meeting in February 8, the Board had gained the necessary votes to ap-
prove a large number of sweeping changes relating to the governance, financing and structure of international cricket. One of the cornerstones of the new financial model is an extended Future Tours Programme (FTP) which will now run until 2023, and while it may still be monitored by the ICC, it is expected to comprise bilateral memorandum of understandings that are binding. "The FTP is a very important piece of work as it gives Members long-term certainty in relation to both their playing schedule and financial planning," Richardson said. "Significant progress has been made but there is still work to be done to develop a balanced calendar of tours and finalise these agreements." The ICC Board also authorised the drawing up of the necessary constitutional amendments which will be placed before the Full Council at the ICC Annual
Conference to be held in Melbourne at the end of June. These amendments refer to the creation of a new commercial arm of the ICC as well as the changes in the administrative structures, pertaining to the chairmanship and the creation of a new all-powerful panel called the Executive Committee. In other developments, the ICC has agreed to retain the format of the World T20 for the next edition, to be held in India in 2016. For the next tournament, the top eight Full Members on the ICC T20I rankings, as on April 30 2014, will automatically qualify for the second round, while the ninth and 10th ranked Full Members will get automatic places in the first (qualifying) round. Six qualifiers will progress from the 14-team ICC World T20 Qualifier in 2015, which will be staged in Ireland and Scotland from July 9 to August 2, 2015.
BROKEN FINGER HURTS BAIRSTOW PROSPECTS SPORTS DESK Jonny Bairstow's chance of retaining his place as England's Test wicketkeeper have taken a major blow with a broken finger ruling him out for up to six weeks. Bairstow, who played the final two Ashes Tests in Australia, could potentially miss Yorkshire's opening four County Championship matches, limiting his opportunity to stake a claim for the gloves in England's first Test of the summer on June 12. Playing in a three-day friendly against Northamptonshire at Wantage Road, Bairstow took a painful blow attempting to take a Liam Plunkett delivery down the leg side. After seeing a specialist in Leeds it was confirmed Bairstow has fractured the ring finger on his left hand. Should Bairstow not return until early May, he could have only three County Championship matches in which to impress the England management, and a new head coach who is expected to be appointed in two weeks' time. Bairstow, 24, failed to convince on his return to Test cricket with a highest
score of 21 in four innings in Melbourne and Sydney. If those performances could be forgiven in an England dressing room at a particularly low ebb, his performances for England Lions in Sri Lanka were more disappointing. A century in a warm-up match
against Sri Lanka A Emerging Players was his only score above fifty in five matches on the tour with his best effort in the three-match unofficial Test series against Sri Lanka A just 27. "It is a devastating blow for Jonny," Yorkshire first team coach Jason Gille-
spie told the club's official website. "He has been working incredibly hard to put in some strong performances for Yorkshire during the early part of the season to enhance his England credentials. It is a great shame for him and I know that he is really disappointed with the news. "He will be working hard on his rehab and we remain hopeful that if the fracture can heal quickly he could be back sooner. It was an innocuous injury. In these circumstances Jonny would take that ball a hundred times without any problems. Things like this can happen in professional sport. "It is how you deal with it that matters most and I know that with his [Bairstow] positivity, he will be chomping at the bit to get back to playing for Yorkshire as soon as possible." Of further concern for Bairstow was the immediate return to form of Matt Prior, who struck a crisp century - his first for over a year - in his opening innings of the Championship season. But Prior benefitted from three dropped catches and an Achilles problem also prevented him from keeping wicket.
Euro exit won't aďŹ€ect signings, says Moyes SPORTS DESK MANCHESTER United manager David Moyes says his transfer targets will not be affected by the prospect of no Champions League football next season. The Premier League title holders lost 3-1 to Bayern Munich in Wednesday's Champions League quarter-final second leg for a 4-2 aggregate defeat. It means United, seventh in the Premier League, are unlikely to be in Europe's elite club competition in 2014-15. Moyes said potential arrivals know any absence is "not a long-term thing". "Any players we've quietly discussed it with are more than happy to join Manchester United," he insisted. Manchester United have appeared in each of the last 18 seasons of the Champions League, with their last absence coming in 1995-96 "The club have never had any problems.
We're looking to spend the right money on players who are available and it's not anything to do with the Champions League." For almost an hour against Bayern on Wednesday United were largely untroubled and their chances of progressing looked promising when Patrice Evra's long-range strike put them ahead. However, Bayern responded immediately as Mario Mandzukic headed in from close range and they then took control, putting the game beyond United with goals from Thomas Muller and Arjen Robben. "It's the sort of thing you learn as a schoolboy - once you score a goal, make sure you don't concede," Moyes added. "You get into position and do your job. We had concentrated so fabulously well throughout the game, for us just to give it up on that moment was really disappointing." Moyes also conceded Wayne Rooney
struggled to make a telling impact in the game, with the England international playing after having an injection to ease a toe injury. "I thought he was having a struggle striking the ball on some occasions," the Scot said. "But he is so vital a player to us, especially with [Dutch striker] Robin van Persie out injured." United's Champions League exit continues what has been a disappointing first season as manager of the three-time European champions for Moyes. They are seventh in the Premier League, 17 points behind leaders Liverpool and seven points behind Arsenal in the final Champions League place with five games remaining, but Moyes's focus now is on rebuilding, with a quick return to the Champions League his priority. "We've not got Champions League football but I believe it's not far away and hopefully it's only one year," he added.
Friday, 11 April, 2014
Akhtar wants ‘fear factor’ back for fast bowlers
CHELSEA BOSS JOSE MOURINHO FINED AND WARNED OVER IMPROPER CONDUCT
SPORTS 15 ZIMBABWE TO HOST SA, AUSTRALIA IN AUGUST
SPORTS DESK Chelsea manager Jose Mourinho has been fined £8,000 and warned about his future conduct after being sent off in last month's 10 defeat by Aston Villa. Mourinho walked on to the Villa Park pitch to speak to referee Chris Foy after Chelsea's Ramires was dismissed. He denied an improper conduct charge but it was proven at a personal hearing with an independent regulatory commission on Wednesday. "I don't know why I was sent off," Mourinho said after the match. "I asked, but the referee refused to speak to me." Mourinho was critical of Foy after the game at Villa Park as Chelsea's lead at the top of the Premier League was reduced to four points. Ramires was shown a straight red card for a two-footed tackle on Villa's Karim El Ahmadi, an incident that sparked a touchline fracas. Mourinho claimed he was trying to speak to Foy because Ramires was pushed by Villa striker Gabriel Agbonlahor, who had been substituted.
REAL MADRID HAVE INJURY WORRIES
ETIRED Pakistan pace ace Shoaib Akhtar has urged top fast bowlers to avoid playing too much of T20 cricket, saying the shortest format of the game has blunted their growth on the international stage. “For me, T20 is a ruthless game for fast bowlers,” Akhtar said during an interview at Qatar Sports Club yesterday. “I would say that fast bowlers like (South Africa’s) Dale Steyn should not play T20 as the fear factor is taken away by the T20 game because batsmen can smash you over your head,” the 38-year-old, who took 178 Test and 247 ODI wickets during his career, added. “They (the modern-day batsmen) can cut or pull you with ease. The fear factor should be there in all forms of cricket. I really believe T20 is a batsman’s game and a sport for the spinners. Real fast bowlers have small role to play,” Akhtar, who retired after the 2011 World Cup, explained. Question: How are you enjoying life after retiring from cricket? SA: Let’s put it this way - I am
standing in the wilderness with no idea where I am headed to next (smiles). It took me about a year to recuperate from injuries after I retired (in March 2011). I had a lot of work in the 20 years of cricket that I played. When I retired, that was the time I got back to normal life, I got back to my family. I was out of touch with my family for almost 20 years. I had never been at home for those 20 years. Life is pretty busy. I am busy doing commentary for Star Sports. I do expert comments on Pakistan TV channels. I am coaching at the same time. Life is getting busy but it is all good. Q: Which is easier - being a TV critic or a cricketer? SA: I don’t criticise the players
SPORTS DESK Real Madrid forward Cristiano Ronaldo is a doubt for Wednesday's Copa del Rey final against Barcelona because of a muscle injury. Ronaldo, 29, was an unused substitute in Tuesday's Champions League quarter-final match with Borussia Dortmund because of a knee complaint. However, Real have also confirmed that he has "an injury to the left biceps' femoris muscle". The Spanish giants did not say how long he could be out for. However Spanish media reports claim he could be sidelined for 15 days. That would see him miss Saturday's league game with Almeria, the cup final against Barcelona and the first leg of their Champions League semi-final. Portugal captain Ronaldo has scored 52 goals in 45 appearances for club and country this season.
(laughs). I pinpoint the problems. You got to be brave enough to know the problems and then pinpoint those and give solutions. Q: What is the problem with Pakistan cricket? How can Pakistan rise as a cricket nation? SA: Maturity ... that’s what lacks
in Pakistan. You got to have a vision. First of all when the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) chairman comes in, he doesn’t know how long is he going to be in the job for. They can’t seem to make a long-term plan. I always say Pakistan cricket always needed a second Imran Khan. If we had another Imran Khan after 1992, Pakistan cricket would have been so different. I don’t mind saying that this is a leader-less cricket board. However, I am sure that (PCB Chairman) Najam Sethi and company would probably make a difference. I am sure they will
take mature decisions that would benefit Pakistan. Rather than making poor decisions for two years and apologising to fans after that, it would be better you make good decisions from the very start. Honestly Pakistan needs a self-less leader, a vision and a mature captain.
Q: Could you be the next Imran Khan for Pakistan cricket after retirement? SA: Look, my idea of serving the
nation is not by going looking for wellpaid jobs. I can provide consultancy if needed. If you want to serve the country, then do it voluntarily please. You should become self-less with no hidden agenda. I am not looking for a job. I can be a consultant. Nothing more. If I am asked to get five fast bowlers, I would do that. I expect the same from others. I mean there are people who are sitting (in PCB corridors) and doing nothing except getting good salaries. I have a huge problem with the fact that you are ‘serving the nation’ and getting paid. Q: How do you see the role of fast bowlers in T20 cricket? Are we losing out on fast bowling because of T20 characters cricket? SA: For me, T20 is a ruthless
game for fast bowlers. I would say that fast bowlers like (South Africa’s) Dale Steyn should not play T20 as the fear factor is taken away by the T20 game because batsmen can smash you over your head. They (the modern-day batmen) can cut or pull you with ease. The fear factor should be there in all forms of cricket. I really believe T20 is a batsman’s game and a sport for the spinners. Real fast bowlers have small role to play. I know Dale bowled really well in one of the T20 games in the T20 World Cup match against New Zealand. But if you look at the stats, fast bowlers get thrashed by batsmen in T20s. If I ask me I would rather have fast bowlers play T20s for practice purposes but they should play the Tests and ODIs only. Q: Tell us something about your coaching aspirations? SA: I have the opportunity to
coach one of the teams in Pakistan domestic cricket. It was very sweet of them to consider me as their coach. I
will think about it. They have offered me the job. I am honoured. I still haven’t thought about it. If I take up the offer, I will try to create a difference. I will do it with a lot of passion. I will do things with aggression. The things I say on TV, I will try to employ the same philosophy on the cricket pitch. So you will see lions on a cricket pitch (smiles). If you have temperament to play the game for so long then yes, I will have the temperament to be a coach as well. It is also very important that a former fast bowler can make for a better coach compared to a former batsman becoming a coach. Because fast bowlers are always result-oriented. That aggression has to be transformed. Pakistan team lacks aggression. Yes, it could get frustrating as a coach. But I guess you got to learn as a coach, learn how to evolve. Q: Do you have any regrets as a cricketer? SA: No, what is gone is gone. I
am just looking forward to what the future holds for me. When the time arrived, I left. I was gone so there is no regret. What is the point of looking back and think ‘I could have done this or that’? There’s plenty to look forward to. Q: In your opinion, who are the best three fast bowlers of alltime? SA: Wasim Akram (of Pakistan),
Malcolm Marshall (of the West Indies) and definitely Waqar Younis (of Pakistan). Q: And three best batsmen you ever bowled to? SA: Brian Lara (of the West In-
dies), Inzamam Ul Haq (of Pakistan) and Adam Gilchrist (of Australia).
South Africa will travel to Zimbabwe in August for a month-long tour that includes one Test as well as a triangular ODI series featuring Australia, who last played in Zimbabwe a decade ago. The only Test will be played at the Harare Sports Club starting August 9, and will be followed by three ODIs in Bulwayo - which last hosted an international match against India in August 2013. The teams will then return back to Harare for the tri-series which is scheduled to begin on August 25. Zimbabwe haven't played an international match at home since their historic win against Pakistan in the second Test in Harare last September. But since then, the country's cricket scene has been blighted by player strikes and administrative troubles which put a temporary halt on their domestic season. Zimbabwe Cricket had even called off a proposed visit by Sri Lanka last year due to a lack of funds. Wilfred Mukondiwa, the managing director of Zimbabwe Cricket, was pleased that the tour was given the goahead, insisting that it would do a world of good for the team. "We are really excited to have the opportunity to host two strong sides like Australia and South Africa at the same time," Mukondiwa said. "Our players need the high-level competition the two teams will provide, and our fans will enjoy watching the matches." For South Africa, the tour will begin preparations for the 2015 World Cup in Australia and New Zealand, as they play Australia, Sri Lanka and New Zealand away from home, before hosting West Indies in the lead-up to next year's showpiece event.
Q: Do you see yourself returning to the game as the Pakistan coach in the next few years? SA: If I have the opportunity to
SouTh AfRicA And AuSTRAliA in ZimbAbwe
Q: You don’t miss playing cricket? SA: Not at all, no. I am definitely
August 9-13: 1st Test, Zimbabwe v South Africa Harare: August 17, 1st ODI, Zimbabwe v South Africa, Bulwayo August 19, 2nd ODI, Zimbabwe v South Africa, Bulwayo August 21, 3rd ODI, Zimbabwe v South Africa, Bulwayo TRIANGULAR SERIES August 26, 1st ODI, Zimbabwe v Australia, Harare August 28, 2nd ODI, South Africa v Australia, Harare August 30, 3rd ODI, Zimbabwe v South Africa, Harare September 1, 4th ODI, Zimbabwe v Australia, Harare September 3, 5th ODI, South Africa v Australia, Harare September 5, 6th ODI, Zimbabwe v South Africa, Harare September 7, Final, Harare
coach Pakistan, I will think about it. I can’t say anything right now. I don’t plan anything that far ahead. But if I get the opportunity then I will see.
happy in retirement. I am a man with a lot of conviction that I retired at the right time.
COURTESY THE PENINSULA
RORY MCILROY HEADS FIELD AT AUGUSTA NATIONAL SPORTS DESK RORY McIlroy and Phil Mickelson will head the field in Tiger Woods's absence when the 78th Masters gets under way at the Augusta National on Thursday. Woods is missing after having back surgery, but the world number one has not won at Augusta since 2005 and the tournament is considered wide open. Northern Ireland's McIlroy is the bookmakers' favourite to clinch a first Masters Green Jacket and third major. Adam Scott bids to become the fourth player to win back-to-back titles. The 24-year-old McIlroy suffered an infamous meltdown at Augusta in 2011 when he blew a four-shot lead going into the final round, but he has won two majors since and has put behind him a miserable 2013 season. "Mind, body, equipment, it's all there," he said. "There are no excuses if I don't do well this week." American left-hander Mickelson is the crowd favourite and can join Arnold Palmer and Woods on four Green Jackets, 10 years after winning his first.
"It's a magical place," said Mickelson. "I just love everything about this tournament." The 43-year-old won the Open at Muirfield last summer for a fifth major title and the third leg of a career Grand Slam of all four majors, with only the US Open, in which he has a record six runner-up spots, missing. Mickelson admits the Masters feels "weird" without Woods, who is missing the tournament for the first time since his debut as an amateur in 1995. The 38-year-old has been stranded on 14 majors since 2008 as he chases Nicklaus's record of 18 major titles. "I hope he gets back soon," said Mickelson. "Look what he's done for the game the last 17 years. It's been incredible. "And no-one has benefited more from having Tiger in the game than myself." Defending champion Scott is number two in the world and can overhaul Woods in the rankings with a two-way tie for third or better. A second major title this week would make the Australian the fourth player to achieve back-to-back Masters wins after Woods in 2001/2002, Nick Faldo in
1989/1990 and Nicklaus in 1965/1966. Another Australian Jason Day, who is fourth in the world, can also top the rankings if he wins. Day was second on his Masters debut in 2011 and third in 2013. Sweden's Henrik Stenson is the third player who can take Woods's crown if he finishes joint second with only one other player or better. Britain is still searching for a first Masters champion since Faldo's third Green Jacket in 1996. The last European to win the Masters was Spain's Jose Maria Olazabal, who won his second title in 1999. England's Lee Westwood finished runner-up in 2010 and tied for third in 2012, while countryman Justin Rose is the reigning US Open champion and has had two top 10s in his last six Masters. "Knowing you've won a major and knowing you've faced those emotions and come through is a huge benefit this week," said Rose. "I'm coming in with no hype, a little under the radar, and I feel good." A total of 24 players will make their Masters debut, with many suggesting the tournament could see only its third first-
time winner after Gene Sarazen in the second event in 1935 and Fuzzy Zoeller in 1979. America has a number of rising stars playing at Augusta for the first time, including Patrick Reed, 23, who has won twice this term to make it three PGA Tour titles in only his second season on the circuit. Compatriot Jordan Spieth, 20, also has a PGA Tour win under his belt and was named rookie of the year in 2013. Reed and Spieth will partner McIlroy
for the first two rounds, starting at 15:52 BST (10:52 local time) on Thursday. Scott will tee off with 19-year-old English amateur Matthew Fitzpatrick and America's US PGA champion Jason Dufner in the group ahead, while Mickelson will play in the penultimate group with Rose and South Africa's Ernie Els at 18:48 (13:48). This year marks the 50th anniversary of Arnold Palmer's fourth Masters win and seventh and final major title.
SPORTS Friday, 11 April, 2014
Danish Kaneria claims innocence as he ﬁghts lifetime ban
PCB ANNOUNCES CONDITIONAL SUPPORT FOR 'BIG THREE'
SPORTS DESK FORMER Pakistan spinner Danish Kaneria has criticised the England and Wales Cricket Board, which banned him for life in 2012. The 33-year-old was punished for introducing then Essex team-mate Mervyn Westfield to illegal bookmakers. "I have not pressured him or done anything that's brought the game into disrepute, so I'm not guilty," he said. "The ECB says I should show remorse, but on what should I show remorse? On something I haven't done?" Westfield was jailed for four months after receiving £6,000 for agreeing to concede 12 runs during an over of a one-day game against Durham in 2009. Kaneria was never charged, but his role in suggesting and organising the spot-fixing plan, as well as his influence over Westfield - acknowledged during the latter's trial - resulted in the spinner receiving a lifetime ban from the sport by the ECB. Under new rules, an ECB ban means
Yousuf disappointed with Latif’s decision LAHORE
N a major volte face, the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) on Thursday took a 360 degree turn, ate copious amounts of humble pie and signed on the dotted line, albeit with the caveat of conditional, to agree to the International Cricket Council (ICC) revamp which rests power in the hands of India, Australia and England in the way the governing body is run. Pakistan thus became the last of the full members -- the others had already caved in to a mix of coaxing and coercion -- to join the 'Big Three' bandwagon. In a statement released to the media following the conclusion of the ICC Board Meeting in Dubai, the PCB said it had agreed to the revised ICC resolutions only on the conditions that it would get its pound of the flesh by way of bilateral series with all members between 2015-2023. It remains to be seen whether the Najam Sethi somersault gains Pakistan what he says a beleaguered PCB shall get from the deal. The
history of India, the BCCI in this case, in recent years delivering on its promises has been quite dicey. “We had completed the discussion, consultation and negotiation phase with regard to the revised resolutions. It was important for us to get assurances on bilateral cricket with all Boards, especially India, which we have now received. The detailed Future Tour Programs (FTP) are now being finalised with all, especially India,” the PCB chairman Najam Sethi was quoted to have said in the official press release. Sethi admitted that Pakistan had decided to change its stance, but only after “the resolutions have been diluted considerably from when these were first presented, and are now unobjectionable.” The upbeat PCB chairman, said he shall 'soon' reveal 'achievements' made during the ICC meeting. The 'soon' is likely to happen today (Friday) at 04:00 p.m. in a press conference. Only days before the ICC meeting which concluded Thursday, Sethi had claimed Pakistan missed out on the opportunity to have a major say in the affairs of the ICC after Zaka Ashraf took over as chief from him for a brief period.
KArAchI: Former Pakistani captain Mohammad Yousuf is reportedly disappointed at Rashid Latif’s decision to turn down an offer from the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) to become the chief selector of the national team. Yousuf made his Test debut under the captaincy of Latif in 1998 and largely credits the former wicketkeeper-batsman for pushing his case to play international cricket. According to a private daily, Yousuf however, said that he realises that no ‘honest’ and ‘straight-forward person’ will be able to work in the present system of the board, adding that the present system of the board does not allow the right man in the cricket system. Yousuf, who was recommended by Latif to be a member of the national selection committee, made it clear that he too is not interested in becoming a national selector now. AGENCIES
Kaneria, who took 261 Test wickets between 2000 and 2010 to become the most successful Pakistan spinner in history, is ineligible to play cricket under any authority affiliated with the International Cricket Council meaning his ban applies worldwide. Kaneria, who lost his appeal last April, has accused the governing body of treating him differently from Westfield, who was given a five-year ban from professional cricket and has recently been cleared to play club cricket in Essex. Kaneria is making another attempt to have his ban overturned, filing a case, which starts on 11 April in the High Court's Commercial Court, against the ECB. "They have taken my cricket, which is my bread and butter," he said in an exclusive interview with the BBC Asian Network. Asked what he would say to Westfield if they met again, Kaneria responded: "Why did you put a knife in my back? I had a wonderful career - why did you destroy it? You get everything back, but for me everything has been taken away by the ECB." In a statement given to BBC Sport, the
Pakistan to conduct T20 league in UAE in January 2015 KArAchI: The Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) has reportedly announced that it would hold the Super Twenty20 (T20) League in January next year as planned in the United Arab Emirates (UAE). The series, which is fashioned on the lines of other foreign T20 leagues being held in Test-playing nations, comes at a time when the Pakistan team was supposed to have no international commitments since after the ICC World T20 2014 to October this year. According to a private newspaper, PCB chairman Najam Sethi said the tournament would involve foreign players, for which it is being held in the UAE, adding that they are also thinking on lines of having the final in Lahore if the overseas players agree. The report mentioned that no Test-playing nation has toured Pakistan since March 2009 when militants attacked the Sri Lankan team in Lahore. AGENCIES
Published by Arif Nizami at Plot No 79, Sector 24, Korangi Industrial Area Karachi.
ECB said it was happy Kaneria had been treated fairly. "We would like to reiterate that Mr Kaneria's guilt has been resoundingly established on two separate occasions by two independent Cricket Discipline Commission panels," it read. "The ECB wholly endorses both panels' decision to impose a life ban in this instance and will continue to advocate the need for the strongest possible deterrents for anyone found guilty of such conduct." Three Pakistan cricketers - Mohammad Amir, Salman Butt and Mohammad Asif were jailed and banned for spot-fixing in a Test against England at Lord's at 2010. Amir, now 21, is still serving a five-year ban but has been supported by the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB), which has allowed him to train at its national academy. Kaneria says the PCB has not shown him the same support. "I don't know why they are treating my case differently," he said. "He's been convicted and has gone to prison. I don't know what's wrong with them. It's heart-breaking."
Re-appoint Misbah as T20 skipper: Sarfraz
ISLAMABAD: Former Test Cricketer Sarfraz Nawaz on Thursday urged the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) to give back the responsibility of Twenty-20 Captaincy to Misbah ul Haq saying at least he is a dependable batsman. Mohammad Hafeez stepped down as T20 skipper last week after the team's failure to qualify for the semi-finals of the World Twenty20 in Bangladesh. Sarfraz said Misbah is the only batsman on whom the team can depend. "He is a consistent scorer and never gives up whenever the team is in trouble," he said. Sarfraz said just see our team's performance in the World T20 Cup match against West Indies. "Our batsmen weren't able to play the whole 20 overs and were all-out on 82 runs in 17.5 overs," he said, adding that we need Misbah back in the T20 team. AGENCIES