Friday, 10 August, 2018 I Zul Qadah 27, 1439 I Rs 19.00 I Vol IX No 43 I 20 Pages I Islamabad Edition
saudi bank ready to bail out pti govt with $4bn loan STORY ON PAGE 12
ECP notifies Imran’s victory in four constituencies STORY ON BACK PAGE
pakistan inks rare military cooperation pact with russia
STORY ON PAGE 03
SC told Haqqani can’t be brought back on contempt charges STORY ON BACK PAGE
three dead as israel, Hamas trade heavy fire
STORY ON BACK PAGE
PTI seT To Take reIns on 13Th g
Fawad cHaudHry claims pti Has 180 Na seats aFter support From BNp-m, gda as presideNt mamNooN approves summary For Na sessioN STAFF REPORT
he Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) is set to form its government in Centre after President Mamnoon hussain approved the summary on Thursday to hold the inaugural session of the National Assembly (NA) on August 13. The PTI will take the reins with the claimed 180 seats in the NA after the president approved the summary moved by Interim Prime Minister Nasirul Mulk for convening the session of the new assembly. According to the PM’s spokesperson, the summary was sent to President Mamnoon and a formal notification for the NA session, which would be convened for at least four days, was issued thereafter. The first session will see the oath-taking ceremony of newly elected members of the Lower house of parliament. After taking an oath, the MNAs will elect the speaker and deputy speaker. The ballot for prime minister and opposition leader will be held shortly after. The constitution calls for the assembly session to be convened within 21 days of a parliamentary election. As per the constitution, the NA session is to be called before August 15; however, it cannot be summoned without the election Commission of Pakistan’s (eCP) consent. Though the session has been called on August 13, the PTI wants the interim government a n d t h e eCP to remove the hurdles in order to get the session convened in time. ‘VICTORY NOTIFICATIONS SHOULD BE EXPEDITED’: PTI leader Naeemul haque has urged the eCP to issue victory notifications to elected candidates on an urgent basis. Talking to reporters, he said that victory notifications need to be sent on an urgent basis by the commission so that Imran can take oath as prime min-
Nawaz Sharif to make court appearance on Monday
It was reported that PTI has already claimed to have crossed the 172 required number of seats to secure the majority in the 342-seat National Assembly. On Wednesday, BNP-M agreed to lend its support to the PTI in the National Assembly as the two signed a six-point memorandum of understanding (MoU) that Shah Mehmood Qureshi said would “strengthens viewpoints at the Centre”. GDA TO SUPPORT PTI: Similarly, the Grand Democratic Alliance (GDA) has announced to support PTI in the National Assembly and be a part of the opposition in the Sindh Assembly. PTI Vice Chairman Shah Mehmood Qureshi made the announcement after meeting GDA President Pir Pagara Sibghatullah Shah Rashidi at the Kingri house in Karachi. Qureshi said that both parties would be a part of the opposition in Sindh along with the Muttahida Quami MovementPakistan (MQM-P), and the joint opposition would decide the future course of action in the Sindh Assembly. he strongly criticised Pakistan People’s Party (PPP) for participating in the opposition parties’ protest against alleged rigging. Qureshi said there was no denying that MQM-P was a political reality, and they would work together for the betterment of Karachi. he said Imran Khan’s willingness to open any constituency was not a political statement and more than thirty constituencies had already been reopened across the country, adding that Khan would decide the constituency which he would keep for himself.
related story on page 02
ECP says rigging complaints decreasing with time
cJp snubs NaB for delaying Nandipur scam probe
Accountability Court-II judge summons former PM in Al-Azizia and Flagship Investments references
STORY ON PAGE 02
Naeemul Haque urges caretaker setup, ecp to expedite process to Hold oatH-takiNg oN time
ister without wasting any time. “We are trying our best to ensure that the date for prime minister’s oath-taking ceremony is announced as soon as possible so we can start working towards Naya Pakistan,” stated haque, adding, “Imran has received victory notifications for three out of his five constituencies.” however, a fourth notification for NA-131 was issued to Imran later in the day. A notification pertaining to NA-53 is still pending owing to the breach of code of conduct by Imran while casting his ballot. haque also called upon Mamnoon to postpone his foreign tour so that oath-taking could be held on time. The PTI leader claimed that the party is in a position to form a government in the Centre, Punjab and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KP). PTI, ALLIES SECURE 180 NA SEATS: Meanwhile, PTI Spokesman Fawad Chaudhry said that the party and its allies had managed to secure more than 180 seats in the National Assembly following successful coalition talks with the Balochistan National Party-Mengal (BNP-M). “The Imran Khan-led PTI secured support from Balochistan National Party-Mengal on Wednesday, following which the party and its allies have crossed the 180seat mark in the National Assembly,” Chaudhry tweeted.
STORIES ON PAGES 02 & 07
SC orders ECP to ensure voting system for expats in by-polls CMYK
Friday, 10 August, 2018
Nawaz Sharif to make Court appearaNCe oN moNday ACCOUNTABILITY COURT-II JUDGE SUMMONS FORMER PM IN AL-AZIZIA AND FLAGSHIP INVESTMENTS REFERENCES ISLAMABAD
ONvICTED former prime minister (PM) and Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) supremo Nawaz Sharif on Thursday has been summoned by an accountability court on Monday in two corruption references that are still pending against him and his two sons. Judge Arshad Malik of Accountability Court-II took up the Al-Azizia and Flagship Investment references on Thursday, directing that the accused be presented before the court at the next hearing. As the hearing began, the NAB prosecutor informed the judge that the IHC had transferred the two references against the former prime minister and his sons to court-II. Hassan and Hussain Nawaz have been declared absconders by the court
due to continuous non-appearance in proceedings in all references, while Nawaz Sharif has been jailed for 10 years in the Avenfield reference. The deputy prosecutor said that Nawaz, who was convicted and facing jail term at Adiala, couldn’t be produced before the court on Thursday due to security concerns. Earlier, court-I had summoned the joint investigation team (JIT) head Wajid Zia in these references, he further maintained. The court subsequently directed to produce Nawaz Sharif on next date of hearing, August 13, and also summoned Wajid Zia on the same date. Sharif’s counsel Khawaja Haris told the court that he will have to appear before the IHC on Monday in connection with a petition of Sharif family members seeking suspension of their sentences and bail. He also requested the court to adjourn cross-examination of prosecution witness Wajid Zia until Friday (August 16).
ORDERS PROSECUTION TO ENSURE PRESENCE OF KEY WITNESS WAJID ZIA IN COURT
“The prosecution can produce Zia for recording his statement in the Flagship reference if they want,” he said. The prosecution, however, opposed Khawaja Haris’ proposal, insisting that the cross-examination of Zia should be completed first before recording the statement. “He is an important witness and needs peace of mind,” argued the prosecutor. The judge then deferred the hearing of the two references to Monday. Earlier on August 7, the Islamabad High Court (IHC) had ordered transferring the Al-Azizia and Flagship Investment references against former PM Nawaz and his family to another court, accepting the plea filed by Nawaz’s counsel Khawaja Haris. The high court, which had earlier reserved its order after NAB Prosecutor Sardar Muzaffar Abbasi’s concluded his arguments, decided in the favour of the Sharif family shortly afterwards. A twomember bench of the IHC, comprising
Justice Mian Gul Hassan and Justice Amir Farooq, had ordered the transfer of the cases on Nawaz’s plea The Sharif family had also petitioned against their convictions in the Avenfield reference. The IHC had clubbed the two references, which are being heard by the same two-member bench. The caretaker cabinet had earlier suggested conducting the trial of corruption references against Sharif family in jail but later rescinded from the decision. Sharif family had also appealed against its conviction in Avenfield verdict. Earlier on July 6, an accountability court had sentenced Nawaz to a total of 10 years in prison and slapped a £8 million fine (Rs1.3 billion) in the corruption reference, while his daughter Maryam was sentenced to seven years with a £2 million fine (Rs335 million). Nawaz’s son-in-law Capt (retd) Safdar was also given a one-year sentence without any fine.
PTI, PML-N back formation of parliamentary commission to probe ‘rigging’ allegations ISLAMABAD STAFF REPORT file photo
Grand opp alliance to move resolutions against ‘rigging’ in Na ISLAMABAD: The grand opposition alliance on Thursday decided to move resolutions in the parliament against alleged rigging carried out in the July 25 general elections. Protest rallies were carried out on the second consecutive day in Lahore, Karachi, Peshawar and Quetta, in which the protesters demanded the Chief Election Commissioner (CEC) to step down from his post. In Karachi, Jamiat Ulema-e-Islam-Fazl (JUI-F) and Awami National Party (ANP) also staged a sit-in outside the Election Commission’s office. A protest was also organised in front of the ECP office in Peshawar, while a rally was organised by the grand opposition alliance from Railway Station to ECP office in Quetta. It is pertinent to note that Pakistan People’s Party (PPP) leader and former leader of opposition in National Assembly Syed Khursheed Shah had hinted at forming a parliamentary commission against the alleged rigging in the polls. various opposition parties have agreed on the formation of parliamentary commission over alleged rigging after detailed consultation. According to the new strategy, the grand opposition alliance has decided to move resolutions in the parliament against alleged rigging, in which an investigation would be demanded from the Senate and National Assembly. The alliance will also show power for the passage of resolutions. STAFF REPORT
While Pakistan Muslim LeagueNawaz (PML-N) President Shehbaz Sharif has demanded the formation of a parliamentary commission to probe the alleged rigging in the July 25 polls, Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) governmentto-be has agreed to the same. While speaking to media persons, the former Punjab chief minister said, “The opposition demands formation of a parliamentary commission.” “We have the right to raise our voices against rigging in elections… Why did the result transmission system [RTS] stop working at the last minute? Why were the polling agents thrown out
of the polling stations,” he inquired. The PML-N chief further said that the commission must comprise members of all parliamentary political parties. “The commission must find out why the RTS was shut down. The commission must find why polling agents weren’t allowed to stay inside polling stations when votes were being counted. Why were votes counted in absence of polling agents? The nation has the right to know about all of this,” he added. The PML-N had secured more seats in the Punjab Assembly. “Everyone knows why we weren’t able to form a government,” Shehbaz remarked. The former Punjab chief minister also remarked that rather than exchanging congratulations, the
opposition will ask for an investigation into the elections on the first session of the National Assembly. PTI AGREES: Meanwhile, PTI Spokesperson Fawad Chaudhry, while talking to an anchorperson on his show, said that his party was ready to form a parliamentary commission to probe the matter. Chaudhry said they had no objection to the commission and were ready to investigate rigging allegations. On Wednesday, anti-PTI parties had staged a protest outside the office of the Election Commission of Pakistan office in Islamabad, against alleged rigging of polls. The protest was attended by the leadership of the like-minded parties, which also demanded resignation from the ECP officials.
CJP snubs NAB for delaying Nandipur scam probe ISLAMABAD: Chief Justice of Pakistan (CJP) Mian Saqib Nisar on Thursday reprimanded the National Accountability Bureau (NAB) for delaying investigation of the Nandipur power project scandal. A three-member bench, headed by Justice Nisar, resumed hearing of the Nandipur case after it was reopened on Wednesday. During the hearing, the NAB prosecutor informed the court that the hearing for Nandipur case started in February 2017 and had been delayed by two years. He added, “The inquiry is in its final stages.” “How many inquiries, in total, are pending with NAB?” CJP inquired. “We have to determine who is responsible for wrapping up all pending inquiries. Is NAB unaccountable for all these delays?” he added. The CJP then called former NAB chief Qamar Zaman Chaudhry
in court to explain the delay in inquiries. “Let us take up a case against the former NAB chairman for the delay,” he said. “Cases are shelved after they are opened but this cannot continue. An inquiry should be taken up only if it has substantial weight, otherwise, people cannot be left hanging,” the CJP said. When former NAB chief appeared in court, the CJP reprimanded him, saying, “You have given many concessions during your time. With so many cases left pending [during your tenure], let us order an inquiry against you.” The SC then summoned a list of all cases pending with the bureau during Chaudhry’s tenure as the NAB chief. Established in 2005 and expected to generate 525 megawatts of electricity, the estimated cost of the project increased to Rs58 billion from Rs22 billion because of delays. STAFF REPORT
Capt (r) Safdar shifted to hospital for ulcer treatment Health concerns have prompted the authorities at Rawalpindi’s Adiala Jail to shift Captain (r) Safdar to Pakistan Institute of Medical Sciences (PIMS) on Thursday evening. Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) leader Safdar, who is serving a one-year sentence after conviction in Avenfield corruption reference, was suffering from stomach-related problems, media reports said. According to details, reports stated that Capt Safdar felt pain in his stomach all of a sudden on the day when the visitors came to see them in the jail. A team of doctors was called from PIMS to check him up in the jail for almost one hour after he vomited and felt nauseated. The doctors then advised the jail administration to shift him to the hospital. On the advice of doctors, Capt Safdar was shifted to PIMS in an armed personnel vehicle amid tight security. On July 29, three-time ousted prime minister Nawaz Sharif and his daughter Maryam Nawaz were jailed over graft charges. Nawaz was also shifted to PIMS after developing serious cardiac complications. The disqualified prime minister and his daughter Maryam were arrested on July 13, minutes after they returned to the country seeking to revitalise their flagging party ahead of a July 25 national election. NEWS DESK
AJK PM, PkMAP chief not allowed to meet Nawaz at Adiala jail ISLAMABAD: Azad Jammu and Kashmir (AJK) Prime Minister (PM) Raja Muhammad Farooq and Pashtunkhwa Milli Awami Party (PkMAP) Chief Mehmood Khan Achakzai on Thursday were not permitted to meet ousted premier Nawaz Sharif at Adiala jail. Achakzai had reached the jail along with Senator Usman Kakar to meet the disgraced premier, however, they were both denied permission. The AJK PM was also not allowed to meet Nawaz despite Thursday being the allocated day for visitors at the jail. Speaking to the media outside the jail, the PkMAP chief said, “I have been in Islamabad for the past two weeks and have been denied permission to meet Nawaz each time I have tried.” “This is no way to treat a three-time prime minister,” he added. “The Constitution grants inmates the permission to meet everyone,” Achakzai added. Meanwhile, Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) President Shehbaz Sharif is en route to Adiala jail to meet Nawaz, sources said. According to sources, Shehbaz will discuss the PML-N’s future course of action with Nawaz. Other senior PML-N leaders, including Marriyam Aurangzeb, Abid Sher Ali, Tariq Fazal Chaudhry and Saad Rafique, have also reached at Adiala jail to meet the former premier. The accountability court on July 6 had sentenced Nawaz to 10 years, his daughter Maryam Nawaz to seven years and son-in-law Captain (r) Muhammad Safdar to one year in prison in the Avenfield properties reference. STAFF REPORT
ECP says rigging complaints decreasing with time ELECTION WATCHDOG RECEIVES OVER 80 COMPLAINTS FROM WOMEN REGARDING JULY 25 POLLS ISLAMABAD STAFF REPORT
The complaints of rigging in elections have decreased with the passage of time, the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) said on Thursday. According to the documents released by the ECP, the reason for the reduction in complaints of the election rigging was the introduction of reforms in electoral laws and decisions given by
the courts. The documents revealed that most complaints regarding rigging in the polls were received after the general elections 2002, when Zafar Ullah Jamali became prime minister. At that time the international observer also declared 2002 elections as the most rigged polls, the ECP said. In 2008 elections, when PPP came into power, some 702 complaints were received by the ECP. After the 2013
general elections, when PML-N came into power, the number of complaints about rigging was 405. Now after the elections of 2018, when PTI bagged majority, 200 complaints have been registered so far, the ECP added. 80 COMPLAINTS FROM WOMEN: On the polling day, the ECP received over 80 complaints from women on their designated voter hotline, according to media reports. Nationwide, on voting day, the ECP said it received over 600 complaints; of which only 80 were by women. A large percentage of the calls were about women being barred from voting
by male relatives and tribal elders. “Several female voters called our telephone hotline from Chakwal in Punjab to complain of disenfranchisement,” Altaf Ahmad, the Public Relations Director at the ECP, said. He added: “We immediately informed our returning officers in the area, who took steps to ensure that women were allowed to cast a ballot.” Similar complaints were received from some constituencies of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa. The swift action proved rewarding. Chakwal, which is divided between the constituencies NA-64 and NA-65, registered a 60 per cent and 59 per cent fe-
male voter turnout respectively, by the end of the day. Women also reported long lines and a slow processing time of the commission’s message verification service (8300), which the election staff insists it worked on throughout the day to rectify. There were also isolated reports of the service not providing the correct address of the polling station. On July 25, the ECP set up a control room for complaints and a separate gender cell for female, transgender and minority voters. Both control rooms, constituted of over a dozen teams, began working from 6am and wrapped up after voting concluded.
Friday, 10 August, 2018
pakiStaN iNkS rare miLitary CooperatioN paCt with ruSSia DEAL COMES AMID DETERIORATING RELATIONS BETWEEN ISLAMABAD AND WASHINGTON
AKISTAN has wrapped up a groundbreaking contract with Russia that would, for the first time, open doors for Russian military training of Pakistani army officers, reported vOA News. The rare deal comes amid deteriorating relations between Islamabad and the United States, which has resulted in the halt of all military exchange programs with Pakistan and left a void that Moscow has stepped in to fill. The security training agreement concluded Tuesday at the end of the two-day inaugural meeting of the Russia-Pakistan Joint Military Consultative Committee (JMCC), said a Pakistan Defense Ministry statement. Pakistani Defense Secretary Zamirul Hassan Shah and visiting Russian Deputy Defense Minister Col. Gen. Alexander Fomin led their respective delegations at the talks in Rawalpindi, where the army is headquartered. “The two sides also held in-depth discussions on avenues of future cooperation. In the end, both countries signed the Contract on Admission of Service Members of Pakistan in the RF [Russian Federation’s] Training Institutes,” said the ministry statement. The Islamabad-Moscow security partnership has strengthened and expanded since late 2014 when the two former rivals signed their defence cooperation agreement. Russia sold four Mi-35M combat helicopters to Pakistan under the deal, and both countries have since held two rounds of counterterrorism military drills on each other’s soil. Navies of the two countries also recently participated in joint antidrug exercises in the Arabian Sea. The latest naval collaboration took place last week in St. Petersburg, where a Pakistani warship participated in the major Russian Navy Day parade. “It was a very important event for us. Actually, the illustration of this importance is that this parade was taken by the commander-in-chief of Russian
armed forces, President Putin,” Russian ambassador to Pakistan, Alexey Dedov, said last week. “This cooperation is developing into many directions. So, there is quite a wide spectrum. And, of course, this is a reflection of our approach to the relations with Pakistan, which to our country has their own independent value for us.” PAKISTAN-US TIES: Pakistan’s relations with the US, meanwhile, have deteriorated since President Donald Trump took office and blamed Islamabad in his South Asia strategy for harbouring terrorists and not doing enough to stop insurgent attacks in neighbouring Afghanistan. Trump suspended all military assistance to Pakistan in January until it takes decisive action against militants on its soil. Pakistani leaders have rejected terrorism and other charges, saying they stem from U.S. security failures in Afghanistan. They also say that halting decades-old military diplomacy will fuel misunderstandings between the two countries. “Training at Russian military institutes would bring about a major shift in the worldview of the top [Pakistan] military officers,” noted Baqir Sajjad, an Islamabad-based journalist and defence analyst. “Until now, the brightest officers poised for leadership positions were trained in the US” Pakistan’s Prime Minister-elect Imran Khan vowed Wednesday that his would-be government will work to improve relations with the US “Pakistan and the United States have witnessed many ups and downs in their relationship, which were the outcome of a trust deficit between the two countries,” Khan told acting American ambassador to Islamabad, John Hoover, who called the Pakistani leader to congratulate him on his election victory. An official statement issued after the meeting said the prime minister-in-waiting said his government will engage with the US to make the relationship more balanced and trustworthy. Khan called on the U.S. and the region, in general, to work collectively to find a political settlement to Afghanistan. He also emphasized the “revitalization of diplomatic ties between the two countries and stressed the need to transform it for the benefit of both Pakistan and the United States.” COUNTERING TERRORISM: While American leaders are sceptical and critical of Pakistan’s counterterrorism efforts, Russian leaders praise Islamabad for eliminating terrorism from Pakistani soil. “It [Pakistan] is a very, very important party,
not only in the regional stability, the stability worldwide. It’s our very valuable partner of tackling such challenges and threats as terrorism, illegal drug trafficking, etc. Our countries face similar challenges and threats to national security,” said Russian ambassador Dedov, while speaking at a seminar in Islamabad. Russia is determined, he said, to give “practical assistance” to strengthen Pakistan’s counterterrorism efforts. Russia and Pakistan both have openly expressed concerns over the emergence of Islamic State’s Afghan branch, known as ISK-P, in “ungoverned spaces” of the war-shattered country. Former Pakistani army general Yasin Malik said Afghanistan remains at the center of growing cooperation with Russia. “This [Afghanistan] is a common denominator for both of us. And the presence of IS is a threat to both the Russian Federation and to Pakistan. very serious efforts are there to jointly meet the challenge of IS in Afghanistan. I think that will be the hallmark of cooperation in security and military between Russia and Pakistan,” Malik noted. AIDING THE TALIBAN? There are also growing allegations that Moscow and Islamabad — under the pretext of fighting IS — are providing covert military support to the Taliban. Russia and Pakistan insist their ties with the Taliban are meant solely to encourage the insurgents to engage in peace talks with the Afghan government to help end the conflict and deter terrorists from using the country for international terrorism. Dedov noted that last month, the chief of Russia’s external intelligence agency also visited Pakistan to participate in a four-nation meeting, with Chinese and Iranian spymasters in attendance. The rare meeting, officials said, focused on the buildup of IS in turmoil-hit Afghanistan. The Russian ambassador credited improved relations with Pakistan to regular exchanges of high-level civilian and military delegations between Pakistani and Russia. He noted that the volume of bilateral trade has increased by 82 per cent in the first five months of 2018 and stood at $450 million. Moscow also is working to help Pakistan build a 1,100-kilometer gas pipeline linking Karachi to Lahore. Dedov, while delivering last week’s lecture at the Islamabad Policy Research Institute (IPRI), did not rule out nuclear cooperation with Pakistan for peaceful purposes, saying, “We do not see obstacles in this matter.”
KP-CM designate Mehmood Khan denies intra-party differences ISLAMABAD STAFF REPORT
Khyber Pakhtunkhwa chief ministerdesignate, Mehmood Khan on Thursday said that there was no truth in reports regarding rifts within the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) over the nomination of the provincial chief executive. “There are no differences in the party. We have 64-65 elected MPAs from Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and one person had to become chief minister,” said Mehmood Khan. Earlier, on Wednesday, PTI nominated Mahmood Khan, an MPA-elect from PK9 Swat, as the next chief minister of KP. The party’s official Twitter handle had also confirmed his nomination to the CM slot, followed by
confirmations from the PTI leadership in Islamabad and Peshawar. The new KP CM-designate belongs to village Kharerai of tehsil Matta in district Swat. He was born in 1972. He belongs to a middle class family. He completed his early education in Matta and college education from Peshawar. He has a Masters in Agricultural Sciences from KP Agriculture University. He defeated Awami National Party’s (ANP) Ayub Khan Ashari in last month’s elections by securing 25,697 votes. He was first elected from Matta to KP Assembly in 2013 after defeating the same opponent. He has served as Home, and Irrigation and Sports Minister in previous KP government. He is the first ever politician
from Malakand Division to be elected to the top executive office of KP. He participated in the 2008 local elections as an independent candidate and was elected the Union Council Nazim for Kheri. Although his family was always associated with the Pakistan People’s Party, Mahmood joined the PTI in 2012 and has risen to the rank of president of PTI Malakand division. In 2014, during his previous term, Mehmood Khan was investigated for alleged charges of corruption. He had transferred government allocated discretionary funds to the amount of Rs 1.8 million to his personal account, which he claimed was done mistakenly. Later on, he was ‘exonerated’ of corruption charges by a committee formed by the provincial
government. While an inquiry report later exonerated the minister, the Peshawar High Court (PHC) had ordered for his removal. However, in 2016, he was brought back into the provincial cabinet as the minister for home and tribal affairs.
Shehbaz blames ‘bad weather’ for his absence from ‘grand protest’ ISLAMABAD: Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) President Shehbaz Sharif on Thursday blamed bad weather for his absence from Wednesday’s protest outside the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) in Islamabad. Talking to reporters, the former Punjab chief minister said that his absence should not be misconstrued and reiterated that PML-N stands with the newly formed 11-party grand opposition on the issue of rigging in General Election 2018. “All the parties held an impressive but peaceful protest on Wednesday,” he said, adding he couldn’t reach there because his flight was cancelled due to bad weather. “No matter what people say but this is the truth,” Shehbaz asserted. He further said that there will be more protests in future and this issue will be raised in the assemblies. “We are going to assemblies to raise the issue of highest priority,” PML-N president stated. “The opposition alliance has already agreed to get this issue investigated through a parliamentary commission. That commission will find out how RTS was shut down on election day and why the polling agents were kicked out of the polling stations,” Shehbaz added. STAFF REPORT
hussain Lawai suffers heart attack, admitted to hospital KARACHI: Prominent banker and main suspect in the Rs 35 billion money laundering scandal, Hussain Lawai suffered a heart attack on Thursday. The accused, currently in the custody of the Federal Investigation Agency (FIA), was moved to the National Institute of Cardiovascular Diseases (NICvD) for treatment. Lawai was arrested by the FIA on July 6 under money laundering charges after the agency registered a case in Karachi over a mega money-laundering scandal involving Rs35 billion — said to implicate politicians, businessmen, and bankers. FIA officials say that 32 people, including Lawai, are being investigated for laundering billions of rupees through ‘benami’ or fictitious bank accounts. The scandal also includes former president Asif Ali Zardari and several of his close associates, including sister Faryal Talpur. Speaking to media following his court appearance, Hussain Lawai said he had no connection whatsoever with the money-laundering case. “No recovery was made [from me]. I’m president of a bank, not a [mere] branch manager,” he said, adding that he did not know whether he had been arrested due to his ties with Zardari or for some other reason. “Time will tell why I’m being targetted, whether the money-laundering happened or not.” STAFF REPORT
‘terrorists’ who attacked akram durrani’s convoy arrested PESHAWAR: Suspected terrorists involved in the attack on former Khyber Pakhtunkhwa’s chief minister (CM) Akram Khan Durrani and his convoy were arrested by special police in Bannu on Thursday. As per details, alleged terrorists identified as Siddique Ullah and Qadar Ayaz were nabbed on a tip-off. Both alleged terrorists belonging to Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) Akhtar Group. Police revealed that Siddique Ullah came from Afghanistan whereas his facilitator Qadar Ayaz hails from Pakistan. The terrorists also confessed to carrying out a terrorist attack on another person named Shireen. On July 13, at least four people were killed and 35 others injured when a bomb targeted the convoy of Muttahida Majlis-e-Amal (MMA) candidate Akram Khan Durrani near the northwestern town of Bannu. Akram Durrani, the MMA candidate who contested elections on NA-35, was heading towards Bannu to participate in a public rally. He remained unhurt in the incident. INP
Pakistan points out Indian attempts to violate UNSC resolutions FO SPOKESPERSON SUGGESTS UN-BACKED IMPARTIAL PLEBISCITE IN KASHMIR AS PER EARLIER RESOLUTIONS ISLAMABAD APP
Describing the Indian attempts to abrogate the Article 35-A of its Constitution, which confers special status on Indianheld Kashmir (IHK) as direct violation of the UN Security Council (UNSC) resolutions, Pakistan on Thursday said that it had consistently been raising this issue at the international forums and would continue to do so. “This is not the first time that India is trying to change the demography of the
disputed Kashmiri state. They have been trying to do it for the last 70 years. This is a direct violation of the UNSC resolutions. We have consistently been raising this issue,” Foreign Office spokesperson Dr Mohammad Faisal said in response to a question at the weekly press briefing. He said that India cannot hope to crush the legitimate, indigenous Kashmiri struggle by such nefarious, underhanded means. All such Indian efforts have failed previously and will continue to fail, he said. “The only solution to the Jammu Kashmir issue is through the re-
alisation of the right to self-determination of the Kashmiris through an impartial UN-administered plebiscite as per the UNSC resolutions,” he maintained. To another question, the spokesperson said that Pakistan had vocally raised the Indian atrocities against innocent Kashmiris at every forum, including the Human Rights Council. “The recent UN OHCHR (Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights) report highlighting the Indian atrocities, recommending an international commission of inquiry to look into the human rights violations in Jammu Kashmir is a validation of our consistent efforts and position,” he added. Dr Faisal said that Pakistan welcomes the stance of the OHCHR and
‘PAKISTAN READY TO WELCOME INTERNATIONAL INQUIRY COMMISSION TO AZAD KASHMIR, GILGIT-BALTISTAN’ was ready to welcome the inquiry commission to Azad Jammu Kashmir and Gilgit-Baltistan. “We will continue to sensitise the international community to urge India to halt the bloodshed in Kashmir,” he added. To a question about the reports that the Indian Border Security Force (BSF) was constructing 50 new surveillance posts along the border in the Gurdaspur sector, the spokesperson said that Pakistan believed in a peaceful neighbourhood. “Our armed forces are fully equipped and prepared to defend the
motherland against any threat, including strengthening of surveillance,” he added. To another question, he said that the abhorrent maltreatment of Indian minorities, including Muslims, was a reality. “Saner voices in India itself are speaking out against it, but cow vigilantes and mob lynching continue to rise,” he said. “It is in India’s best interest to put an end to the strong existing fascism in India. It is to India’s own detriment to encourage such extremism and fascist tendencies which are the ‘acceptable norm’ in India,” he added.
Friday, 10 August, 2018
WEATHER UPDATES FRIDAY
‘PTI has abolished Revisions in Capital’s masteRplan dynastic politics in KP’ on the CaRds PESHAWAR APP
SHAH NAWAZ MOHAL
For the first time since its inception, Islamabad is all set to get a complete revamp as the city managers, spearheaded by the Planning and Design Directorate of the Capital Development Authority (CDA), have decided to undertake the massive revision in decades-old masterplan. The decision was taken by high-ups and work initiated by the civic agency aims to address the issues of urbanization due to which both the residents living in the urban sectors, housing societies and in the rural areas suffer from housing shortage, lack of infrastructure, traffic congestion, improper and lack of access to basic amenities, no regulation of highrise buildings, and growth of the multi-storey residential buildings. It is pertinent to mention here that the process of revising the masterplan has multiple stages. In the first stage, the CDA Board will ask the authority to hire a consultant for the revision of the masterplan. In the second stage, a commission will review it and finally send it for approval to the cabinet. After the approval that the masterplan will be revised and implemented. Since its incorporation in 1960, the masterplan hasn’t been reviewed to fit the new
realities and need of the capital territory. The city managers, according to officials, have plan to ‘resolve’ the perennial issue of the illegal constructions that inundates the entire city, especially in the housing societies. Previously, CDA had decided to amend its Zoning Control Policy of 2007 for many sectors, including E-11, after thorough deliberation. However, the CDA Board while showing willingness to regularise the apartment complexes, has approved layout plans of the Khudadad Heights, the Capital Residencia and the Meridian Heights. But these apartment buildings are already built, functional and occupied. Islamabad, being the only city that has been constructed according to the masterplan, is in dire need of thorough planning and massive changes as the encroachments, environmental degradation and mushrooming housing societies have snatched its green character. Although from time-to-time, the proposal of amending the masterplan has been considered. However, nothing concrete ever came out of it other than adjusting the zoning regulation and turning the title of few residential and commercial lands. This time around, the proposals include purpose-built parks, regularisation of the high-rise buildings, a new Building Control Authority and a site for the waste disposal along other recommendations.
Politicians on Thursday welcomed decision of Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) Chairman Imran Khan for nominating Mahmood Khan as the chief minister and termed it a right decision that would help ensure strengthening of democracy, merit and good governance in the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province. MNA-elect Nasir Khan Musazai said that PM-designate Imran Khan has taken a principal decision by nominating Mahmood Khan for the office of the chief minister as he belonged to the Malakand Division from where no chief minister was elected in the past. He said that PTI has achieved the landslide victory from the Malakand Division including three MNAs from
Swat, two from Lower Dir, one each from Malakand, Buner and Upper Dir and this decision would further strengthen the party there. The people of the Malakand Division especially Swat district had offered a lot of sacrifices in the past and Mahmood Khan being native of the area was well-aware of their problems and would utilise all his energies for expediting pace of economic development in the region. PTI has abolished status-quo and dynastic politics and nominated the chief minister this time from Swat district as its former chief minister Pervez Khattak belonged to Nowshera. Musazai said that Imran Khan was the only hope for the people as he has the ability to address all the challenges faced by the country today. He said that the rejected politi-
cians with different political ideologies were assembled against PTI as they feared that if Imran Khan completed five years mandated tenure, their politics would came to an end forever. He said that the people had voted for a change on July 25 and Imran Khan would fulfill all the promises made with electorates in the next five years. Nazim Bahadar Khan also welcomed nomination of Mahmood Khan as the next chief minister and termed it a positive decision based on merit. Mahmood Khan being a seasoned politician and close aide of Imran would utilise his energies for smooth running of the affairs of the government besides ensuring completion of the metro bus project in Peshawar and Swat Expressway projects in the province.
Journalists pledge to line up nutrition on top agenda PESHAWAR STAFF REPORT
Role of media for highlighting impact of malnutrition was discussed in a meeting organised by the Scaling Up Civil Society Alliance Pakistan and the Nutrition International with the collaboration of the United Rural Development Organisation (URDO) here in Peshawar. The journalists pledged to actively play their role for prioritising nutrition agenda at the policy and programme levels at Khyber Pakhtunkhwa as well as raise public awareness on the adverse effect of malnutrition to bring about behaviour change. On the occasion, Dr Kashif Nazeer of the Planning and Development Department highlighted the importance of media’s role for public opinion making. He shared the initiatives taken by the provincial government for implementation of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Multi-sectoral Integrated Nutrition Strategy – launched in December
CDA fires officials involved in rape of girl at F9 Park ISLAMABAD: The Capital Development Authority (CDA) has fired two of its employees after they confessed to have sexually assaulting a 20-year-old girl in broad daylight at the Fatimah Jinnah Park here in Islamabad. The Department of Parks/Environment has issued the notification of their dismissal, saying the duo have booked in an FIR with the Margalla Police for threatening, extortion and sexually assaulting a young woman. The F9 Park Administration described the act as violation of rules and human value and expressed regret over it. On August 2, the girl was blackmailed, extorted and raped by the CDA officials after she visited the park with her male mate.
2014 – and progress made for addressing the malnutrition situation in the province. He said that the session would be productive and media would play its crucial role for overcoming malnutrition challenge. SUN Civil Society Alliance Pakistan Coordinator Aliya Habib presented the overall context of malnutrition and status at the national and the provincial level. She highlighted that malnutrition not only effects individuals but has dire economic and developmental impacts for the community and the nation as well. Khyber Pakhtunkhwa has high rate of stunting among children under-five at 47.8 per cent as compared to 43.7 per cent of the national average. The current malnutrition had been estimated to cost Pakistan’s economy $7.6 billion (3% of GDP) annually. She emphasised that a multisectoral and holistic approach including short- and long-term evidence based approaches to address malnutrition.
Student allegedly commits suicide in Chitral CHITRAL STAFF REPORT
A student in Chitral allegedly committed suicide after receiving his intermediate results. According to a report, the student had failed to secure a foreign scholarship. He received lesser marks than two of his friends so he was disheartened. The exam scores had been released at 4pm on Monday but due to poor internet facilities in the region and excessive load on the website, many students were only able to see their results late on Monday night or early Tuesday morning.
WORLD VIEW 05
Friday, 10 August, 2018
The SaudiS deliver a Sobering leSSon: in diplomacy, wordS do maTTer OUR DIPLOMACY HAS SUFFERED SERIOUS SETBACKS IN BEIJING, DELHI AND RIYADH. WE NEED TO UNDERSTAND THAT PUNCHING ABOVE OUR WEIGHT INVOLVES MORE THAN SIMPLY TALKING ABOVE IT
GLoBe and maiL
OREIGN Affairs Minister Chrystia Freeland is doing her best to sound undismayed in the wake of Saudi Arabia’s furious reaction to Canadian comments on Twitter about the Kingdom’s recent detention of women’s-rights activists. But the Saudi response, which included a plan to withdraw all state-funded Saudi students (as many as 20,000) from Canadian schools, the suspension of Saudi Arabian Airlines flights to and from Toronto and a freeze on new trade and investment, and a selloff of Canadian assets, is almost certainly far more than the minister bargained for. The relationship is now effectively on hold, with high-level channels shut down until
the Saudis decide that we have corrected what their foreign minister described as our “big mistake.” We should care about what’s happening. Saudi Arabia’s one-step-forward, two-back approach to basic rights for women is deeply troubling. There is also a Canadian dimension to the crackdown. One of the detained, Samar Badawi, is the sister of the imprisoned writer Raif Badawi, whose wife, Ensaf Haidar, recently became a Canadian citizen. But we clearly didn’t anticipate that the Saudi response to our commentary would be so swift and damaging. Twitter-based diplomacy is a high-stakes exercise, particularly when you are trying to gauge how far you can push a prickly and secretive totalitarian regime. It’s attractive because it allows a hands-on foreign affairs minister, such as Ms. Freeland, to intervene in real time. But it is no substitute for careful analysis, co-operation with allies and patient engagement at all levels of Saudi society. Although the attention paid to precise language in diplomacy can seem excessive, words do matter when one state tries
to communicate with another. Insecure regimes, as with insecure people, react badly to highly directive words such as “immediately,” which was the timeline we urged the Saudis to adopt in freeing the detainees. The possibility of a negative reaction increases exponentially when the message is delivered in public. When asked on Wednesday whether we could resolve things through an apology, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau was vague. Ottawa wordsmiths are probably already hard at work on a very carefully worded expression of regret. But the Saudis may want the deep freeze to continue. That’s because Canada was also a target of convenience, big enough to serve as a sobering example for Saudi Arabia’s many other critics, but not so big that it couldn’t be punished with relative impunity. It didn’t have to go this way. The Chinese government’s recent decision to allow Liu Xia, the wife of Nobel laureate and human-rights advocate Liu Xiaobo, to leave house arrest in Beijing and travel to Germany owes much to the quietly ef-
fective diplomacy of Chancellor Angela Merkel. She and her diplomats worked patiently to make this outcome seem a natural outgrowth of their respectful, mutually-beneficial relationship with China. I suspect that the Germans did as much listening as talking. We seem to be doing far more talking than listening, favouring a form of megaphone diplomacy that only seems to work with smaller countries that need our diplomatic support or our aid dollars. Yet we stubbornly favour broadcast mode even when it comes to major powers, something that contributed to our recent diplomatic debacles with China and India. We’re strangely reluctant to believe that our “values-based” foreign policy can come across as preachy, insensitive and interfering. It’s safe to assume that, back in May, Saudi diplomats in Ottawa shared with their headquarters a widely circulated photo of Environment Minister Catherine McKenna high-fiving our ambassador to Ireland as they publicly celebrated the victory of the “Yes” side in Ireland’s re-
The real message behind the Saudi Crown Prince's diplomatic war with Canada TRUMP MAY BE RELISHING THE THOUGHT THAT TRUDEAU IS GETTING A BEATING BY THE SAUDIS time BessMA MoMANi
Saudi’s young Crown Prince Mohamed bin Salman (MBS) has been moving his country at a rapid speed of change. At home, that has elicited joy and caused a surge of nationalism. But since becoming crown prince last year, his foreign policy moves have been a source of anxiety for the international diplomatic community. Unpredictable and brash moves have now become the crown prince’s diplomatic signature. From the alleged kidnapping of the Lebanese Prime Minister to get him to renounce Hizbollah and Iranian influence in Lebanese politics, to the severing of all diplomatic and economic ties with neighboring and fellow Gulf Cooperation Council member Qatar, to the now intractable war against the rag-tag Houthi rebels in Yemen, MBS takes foreign policy to the extreme. Now it looks like it’s time to take on Western governments that dare criticize Saudi Arabia’s human rights record. Countries who speak out will lose billions of dollars of lucrative business deals. And so, on Monday, Saudi Arabia was willing to cut Canada loose—to achieve its broader objective of signaling to the world that the new Saudi Arabia is serious about rejecting unsolicited criticism of its internal affairs. After all, bilateral economic ties are minor in the grand scheme of things. What matters to Riyadh is that the message will be heard loud and clear across the globe. Both Sweden in 2015 and Germany in 2017 felt similar Saudi wrath when they criticized the Kingdom’s human rights. European ambassadors were temporarily recalled and some business deals were suspended. But the crown prince is taking this diplomatic spat with Canada to a whole other level. Expelling the Canadian Ambassador, halting new trade and investment deals, suspending Saudi Airlines flights into Canada, removing government holdings of all Canadian assets and bonds in their financial portfolio, flying back Saudi patients from Canadian hospitals, telling some 15,000 Saudi students in Canada on government scholarships to find alternate arrangements abroad, recalling nearly 800 Saudi doctors training in Canadian healthcare to come home. All this in under a week since the Canadian Foreign Ministry sent a tweet criticizing Saudi human rights’ record. If the dispute with Qatar is any indication of where things are going with Canada, the Saudi crown prince will leave no room for com-
promise, ask the impossible of the Canadian government, and continue to bash Canada at every turn. Saudi state television has already made Canada—a country with a reputation of welcoming minorities and immigrants—to be the beacon of global oppression. This all out mudslinging of a country’s reputation comes from the same playbook used with Qatar. So what next? Short of having Canada’s foreign minister’s resignation, this feud will likely continue to roil until there is a change in government. Since the crown prince is a young 32 and has effectively consolidated power around him, it will be the change of Canadian government that will put this diplomatic spat to rest. Canada has elections coming up in October 2019. Until then, expect more of the extreme. After all, Saudi Arabia is literally trying to cut off Qatar by creating a physical channel of water between it and the Qatari peninsula attached to it. At least in Canada, we can be thankful we do not share a border with the Saudis. But the country with which Canada shares the longest undefended border in the world, the United States is silent. The absence of diplomatic support for Canada from its traditional allies is astounding. In any other time of history, Canada would have expected the United States to have come to the defense of Canadians and the liberal democratic values they supposedly share. But under the Trump administration, this is no normal United States. Trump is also no fan of Prime Minister Justin Trudeau—calling him “weak” on Twitter—and is likely unimpressed with Trudeau’s self-declared feminist foreign policy. We don’t know whether Riyadh cleared the diplomatic move with Washington before expelling Canada’s Ambassador, but the deafening silence out of the White House on the matter makes it clear that Trump does not care for a traditional bilateral relationship with Canada. Indeed, he may be relishing the thought that Trudeau is getting a beating by the Saudis. The young crown prince is not yet king, but already Qatar, Yemen, and now Canada are in Saudi crossfires. It seems clear that Saudi Arabia will be sending shockwaves in diplomatic circles for years to come. Momani is Professor at the University of Waterloo and Balsillie School of International Affairs, Senior Fellow at the Centre for International Governance and Innovation, and NonResident Fellow at the Stimson Center in Washington, D.C.
cent referendum on abortion. Such a high-level Canadian intervention would have seemed unprecedented but for the fact that Prime Minister Trudeau had already inserted himself into the campaign. We’re generating the perception among emerging powers that when we talk about human rights, we’re arrogantly insisting on the adoption of an agenda that reflects the worldview and biases of the secular West. Among our Western allies, we’re increasingly seen as dilettantes, promoting our values agenda because we have no real interests to pursue. Up until the Trump era, this didn’t matter much. For decades, we benefited from the fact that the main objectives of any foreign policy – security and prosperity – were conveniently built into our neighbourly relationship with the United States. We could afford to dabble in diplomacy elsewhere. Although the world has changed, we’re still dabbling. It’s time to get serious. Our diplomacy has suffered serious setbacks in Beijing, Delhi and Riyadh. We need to understand that punching above our weight involves more than simply talking above it. David Mulroney was Canada’s ambassador to China from 2009 to 2012.
The US is at risk of losing a trade war with China Project Syndicate Joseph e stiglitz
What was at first a trade skirmish— with US President Donald Trump imposing tariffs on steel and aluminum—appears to be quickly morphing into a full-scale trade war with China. If the truce agreed by Europe and the US holds, the US will be doing battle mainly with China, rather than the world (of course, the trade conflict with Canada and Mexico will continue to simmer, given US demands that neither country can or should accept). Beyond the true, but by now platitudinous, assertion that everyone will lose, what can we say about the possible outcomes of Trump's trade war? First, macroeconomics always prevails: if the United States' domestic investment continues to exceed its savings, it will have to import capital and have a large trade deficit. Worse, because of the tax cuts enacted at the end of last year, the US fiscal deficit is reaching new records—recently projected to exceed USD 1 trillion by 2020— which means that the trade deficit almost surely will increase, whatever the outcome of the trade war. The only way that won't happen is if Trump leads the US into a recession, with incomes declining so much that investment and imports plummet. The “best” outcome of Trump's narrow focus on the trade deficit with China would be improvement in the bilateral balance, matched by an increase of an equal amount in the deficit with some other country (or countries). The US might sell more natural gas to China and buy fewer washing machines; but it will sell less natural gas to other countries and buy washing machines or something else from Thailand or another country that has avoided the irascible Trump's wrath. But, because the US interfered with the market, it will be paying more for its imports and getting less for its exports than otherwise would have been the case. In short, the best outcome means that the US will be worse off than it is today. The US has a problem, but it's not with China. It's at home: America has been saving too little. Trump, like
so many of his compatriots, is immensely shortsighted. If he had a whit of understanding of economics and a long-term vision, he would have done what he could to increase national savings. That would have reduced the multilateral trade deficit. There are obvious quick fixes: China could buy more American oil and then sell it on to others. This would not make an iota of difference, beyond perhaps a slight increase in transaction costs. But Trump could trumpet that he had eliminated the bilateral trade deficit. In fact, significantly reducing the bilateral trade deficit in a meaningful way will prove difficult. As demand for Chinese goods decreases, the renminbi's exchange rate will weaken—even without any government intervention. This will partly offset the effect of US tariffs; at the same time, it will increase China's competitiveness with other countries—and this will be true even if China doesn't use other instruments in its possession, like wage and price controls, or push strongly for productivity increases. China's overall trade deficit, like that of the US, is determined by its macroeconomics. If China intervenes more actively and retaliates more aggressively, the change in the US-China trade balance could be even smaller. The relative pain each will inflict on the other is difficult to ascertain. China has more control of its economy, and has wanted to shift toward a growth model based on domestic demand rather than investment and exports. The US is simply helping China do what it has already been trying to do. On the other hand, US actions come at a time when China is trying to manage excess leverage and excess capacity; at least in some sectors, the US will make these tasks all the more difficult. This much is clear: if Trump's objective is to stop China from pursuing its “Made in China 2025” policy—adopted in 2015 to further its 40-year goal of narrowing the income gap between China and the advanced countries—he will almost surely fail. On the contrary, Trump's actions will only strengthen Chinese leaders' resolve to boost innovation and achieve technological supremacy, as they realise that they can't rely on others, and that the US
is actively hostile. If a country enters a war, trade or otherwise, it should be sure that good generals—with clearly defined objectives, a viable strategy, and popular support—are in charge. It is here that the differences between China and the US appear so great. No country could have a more unqualified economic team than Trump's, and a majority of Americans are not behind the trade war. Public support will wane even further as Americans realise that they lose doubly from this war: jobs will disappear, not only because of China's retaliatory measures, but also because US tariffs increase the price of US exports and make them less competitive; and the prices of the goods they buy will rise. This may force the dollar's exchange rate to fall, increasing inflation in the US even more—giving rise to still more opposition. The Fed is likely then to raise interest rates, leading to weaker investment and growth and more unemployment. Trump has shown how he responds when his lies are exposed or his policies are failing: he doubles down. China has repeatedly offered face-saving ways for Trump to leave the battlefield and declare victory. But he refuses to take them up. Perhaps hope can be found in three of his other traits: his focus on appearance over substance, his unpredictability, and his love of “big man” politics. Perhaps in a grand meeting with President Xi Jinping, he can declare the problem solved, with some minor adjustments of tariffs here and there, and some new gesture toward market opening that China had already planned to announce, and everyone can go home happy In this scenario, Trump will have “solved,” imperfectly, a problem that he created. But the world following his foolish trade war will still be different: more uncertain, less confident in the international rule of law, and with harder borders. Trump has changed the world, permanently, for the worse. Even with the best possible outcomes, the only winner is Trump—with his outsize ego pumped up just a little more. Joseph E Stiglitz is the winner of the 2001 Nobel Memorial Prize in Economic Sciences. His most recent book is Globalization and its Discontents Revisited: Anti-Globalization in the Era of Trump.
06 NEWS ‘afghan-trained militant’ allegedly behind diamer school attacks: police ISLAMABAD STAFF REPORT
Gilgit-Baltistan (GB) Police on Thursday said that a man suspected of being involved in the Diamer school attacks and killed during a search operation earlier this week, was a “high-profile Afghan-trained militant”. Diamer Superintendent Police (SP) Rai Ajmal in a report submitted to the Diamer deputy inspector general (DIG) of police said that the suspect, Commander Shafiur Rehman, was killed in an exchange of fire with the police. “On noticing the police raiding team, the accused opened indiscriminate fire that resulted in the martyrdom of Constable Arif Hussain, while Head Constable Karamat Ali sustained bullet injuries,” the report said. “In response to the incident, police cordoned off the entire area and started a search operation,” it added. The SP’s report further adds: “Three suspects identified as Fidaur Rehman, Faizur Rehman and Saeedur Rehman allegedly involved in the attack were arrested whereas, commander Shafi was killed during an exchange of fire.” “A criminal case was registered against Shafiur Rehman, Saeedur Rehman, Fidaur Rehman, Ziaur Rehman, Basil, Nasirullah, Sher Khan and Muhammad Nasir,” the report said, adding that efforts for the arrests of the remaining five suspects are currently underway. The report also said that “unknown terrorists” had opened fire at the Darel police station at 2am on Saturday night, to which “police effectively retaliated”. A case was registered against this incident, as well as against the blocking of a road and firing at passersby by miscreants in Darel’s Phuguch area. “At present, operations/targeted raids are being conducted in Darel and Tanger subdivisions of the district and it will be further investigated in coordination with other LEAs,” the SP said.
Friday, 10 August, 2018
Punjab’s transgender students to get education on equal footing ISLAMABAD
special notification has been issued to educational institutes in Punjab by the Education Department in relation to the enrolment of transgender students “on an equal basis”. The letter by the educational department provided instructions to the school administrations for dealing with transgender children in order to “recognise/protect the rights of transgender children in Pakistan under the Transgender Persons (Protection of Rights) Act, 2018 (Act No. XIII of 2018)”. The letter dated August 8 further stated that “the [transgender students] must be treated on an equal basis and in the column of gender, their real status (transgender) may be mentioned at the time of admission.” Furthermore, it directed the institutes that during annual enrolment and retention campaign, “equal importance may be given for boys, girls, and transgender in order to achieve 100 per cent enrolment and retention targets”. The letter, addressed to education authorities in the province, is to be implemented in all government and private education institutes in Punjab as “top priority”.
Educational institutEs to Enrol transgEndEr studEnts without discrimination to achiEvE 100 pEr cEnt rEtEntion targEts
Earlier, the National Assembly passed the Transgender Persons (Protection of Rights) Bill, 2018, aimed at ensuring the rights of transgender persons, on May 8. The bill, which had already been passed by the Senate, was moved by Pakistan People’s Party (PPP) Syed Naveed Qamar. The bill allows transgender per-
caretakers have laid groundwork for incoming govt: info minister
iran welcomes talks with pakistan on gas pipeline ISLAMABAD APP
Iran’s Deputy Minister of Petroleum Amir Hossein Zamaninia has said that Iran welcomes the continuation of talks with Pakistan on the gas pipeline project. The Iranian minister said that Iran considered energy and gas a factor for promoting regional cooperation and solidarity with neighbours including Pakistan, Iran’s national news agency IRNA said Thursday. Zamaninia said that Iran welcomed keeping up negotiations on completion and commissioning of Pakistan-Iran gas pipeline. The Pakistan–Iran gas pipeline, also known as the Peace Pipeline or IP Gas, is an under-construction 2,775-kilometer (1,724 mi) pipeline to deliver natural gas from Iran to Pakistan. The Iranian minister said that Islamabad-Tehran ties had always been historic and brotherly and their religious and cultural bonds served as the biggest backbone for the two governments’ friendly ties, especially in the field of economy.
sons to obtain a driving license and passport. They have the option to get their gender changed in the National Database and Registration Authority’s record as well. Furthermore, harassment of transgender persons has been prohibited in and outside their homes. An important part of the law was that they would not be discriminated against by educational
Federal Minister for Information, Broadcasting, National History and Literary Heritage Barrister Syed Ali Zafar Thursday said the caretaker government during its constitutional tenure prepared balanced guidelines for the new government to provide solutions to the challenges in all sectors including energy, health, education and economy. Speaking to media persons after inaugurating a photographic exhibi-
tion “Flashes of Pakistan’s History” organized by Directorate of Electronic Media and Publications (DEMP) here at Lok Virsa, he said the guidelines would be handed over to the new elected government. He offered that the caretaker government ministers were open and ready to give briefing to the elected government in any sector as part of a new tradition. He said Nawaz Sharif and Maryam Nawaz were in jail and if they would come out of jail on the orders of the court, then the elected government
would decide about putting their names on the Exit Control List (ECL). The minister said under the Election Act 2017, Result Transmission System (RTS) was used for preparing results for the general election 2018. Reasons would be ascertained for the failure of the RTS and if there was any complaint or objection about any polling station, recounting could be done as per law, he added. The minister said Independence Day would be celebrated with patriotic fervour, adding the day should be celebrated by staying above politics as for every country Independence Day was a historic day. The minister appreciated the organizers for arranging the exhibition related to the History of Pakistan and said public should visit the exhibition which would continue for some days. The exhibition depicted the struggle of Quaid-i-Azam Muhammad Ali Jinnah and leaders of Pakistan movement, he said adding the historic pictures revived the passion and enthusiasm of people. To a question, Ali Zafar said August 14 was a day of happiness and celebration and every country in the world fully celebrated independence day, and the Pakistani nation would also celebrate the day with enthusiasm.
2018 election score lower than those in 2013: PILDAT ISLAMABAD STAFF REPORT
The overall score of quality of General Election 2018 stands at 51.79% which has dropped nearly 5 percentage points from the quality of General Election 2013 assessed to be at 56.76%, an assessment conducted by Pakistan Institute of Legislative Development and Transparency (PILDAT) regarding the quality of polls found. The institute has proposed an investigation into those aspects of the election about which a number of questions have been raised by various political parties and candidates. According to the assessment, the quality of General Election 2018 has been assessed under four broad categories: 1) Pre-Poll; 2) Polling; 3) Counting of Votes, Compilation & Transmission of Results and 4) Post-Poll phase. While Pre-Poll Phase received an overall score of 50%, the Polling day operations and arrangements for voting received the highest score of 64%. Count-
ing, Result Compilation & Transmission of Results received the lowest score of 40% in the assessment and the Post-Poll phase received the score of 50%. The assessmenT is briefed below: Pre-Poll Phase: While the quality of Pre-Poll Phase has received an overall score of 50%, it has declined nearly 12 percentage points in comparison to the quality of pre-poll phase of GE 2013 which had received a score of 62.35%. While PILDAT had already carried out an analysis of perception of pre-poll fairness in May 2018 terming it Unfair, the score assigned in this assessment has been based on the period between April to July 2018 and in particular is low on the parameters of neutrality of the federal and provincial caretaker governments, impartiality of the intelligence agencies and independence of the Judiciary. PollinG daY: The PILDAT assessment shows improved Polling-day Operations in GE 2018 compared to GE 2013 in terms of training and impartiality of polling staff and overall management of the
polling arrangements for citizens as the process received an overall score of 64% It must be noted that in terms of polling day management, a steady improvement is recorded since 2002 and 2008 when the process received a score of 40% respectively, improving to 44% in 2013 and now to 64% in 2018. CoUnTinG: Counting, Result Compilation & Transmission of Results have received the lowest score of 40% in the assessment. It must be noted that this is not just the lowest score for any single aspect of the quality of General Election 2018 but it is also the lowest score in comparison to the processes adopted in 2002, 2008 and 2013 when the similar process received scores of 43% respectively in 2002 and 2008 and improving to 47% in 2013 General Election which has, in 2018 General Election, plummeted to 40%. Each parameter under the Counting, Result Compilation & Transmission of Results including strict legal requirements of transparency of compilation of Statement of Vote Count, availability of Results
institutions, employers, in trade and health services, and when using public transport and buying or selling or renting property. The bill had also instructed that the government establishes a safe house for transgender persons and provide them with medical, educational facilities and psychological counselling. In addition to all the basic rights, the bill had stated that anyone found guilty of forcing a transgender person to beg would be sentenced to six months in prison and served a fine of Rs50,000. Initially, the bill faced objections from Jamiat Ulema-e-Islam-Fazl (JUIF) Senator Naeema Kishwer for containing clauses that she claimed were “un-Islamic”. However, the claims were negated by the members of civil society and legislators working on the bill. With the arguments presented by the aforementioned, the Senate and the CII were convinced that the bill is fully compatible with the principles of Islam and the Constitution of Pakistan. Having said that, the Pakistani legislation as always been considered ‘progressive; when it came to protecting the rights of the Transgender community in Pakistan, however, it was never really incorporated as a ‘law’ nor was it implemented in any way to protect the rights of the community.
anF dg acknowledges Balochistan chapter’s role in curbing drug traﬃcking QUETTA STAFF REPORT
Director General (DG) of Anti-Narcotics Force (ANF) Major General Musarrat Nawaz Malik visited Balochistan regional directorate and appreciated the role of personnel in combating the trafficking of narcotics. He was welcomed by Balochistan ANF Force Commander Brigadier Aqib Nazir Chaudhry and other senior staff officers. The force commander briefed the DG on counter-narcotics achievements of Balochistan ANF, current drug situation and major challenges being faced with regard to trafficking of narcotics, precursor chemicals and psychotropic substances. During the briefing, the force commander highlighted that during 2018, ANF surpassed all previous records of its successes. Furthermore, the ANF DG visited the police station of ANF in Dalbadin, Girdi Jungle, Bracha and Pak-Afghan Border. The force commander highlighted that Pakistan was sharing over 2600 km of porous border with Afghanistan and has become the major victim and transit country for Afghan opiates and hashish. However, Pakistan has enforced a very effective drug supply and demand reduction mechanism despite massive challenges with limited resources, he said.
to Polling Agents and Display at Polling Stations, Efficiency and Accuracy of the Transmission of Election Results from polling stations to Returning Officers, Transparency of Consolidation of Results at RO level and Efficiency and Accuracy of transmission of results from ROs to the ECP has been called into question. PosT-Poll Phase: The Post-Poll Phase has also seen declining score of 50% compared to the score assigned to the similar process after the GE 2013 which stood at 68%. Again, the assessment of the quality of this process shows that while the lowest score assigned to this process was 40% after General Election of 2002, which saw the worst-of-its-kind post-poll rigging in recent history, the score improved after GE 2008 to 56%, recorded significant further improvements with the score of 68% after General Election 2013 and has now recorded a decline even lower than GE 2008. This decline in the quality of Post-election score compared to GE 2013 may partly be attributed to the fact that PMLN had gained a clear majority in the National and Provincial Assembly of Punjab in GE 2013 and it did not need to make intense efforts to win the support or joining of independent legislators to form the government.
Friday, 10 August, 2018
PEMRA directs channels to dedicate ad spots, hold fundraising telethons for dams ISLAMABAD STAFF REPORT
The Pakistan Electronic Media Regulatory Authority (PEMRA) has directed all the satellite TV Channels in Pakistan to broadcast public service announcements (PSAs) appealing for donations for the construction of dams. According to a notification issued, the regulatory body has told all the licensed satellite channels in the country to “allocate one minute in every hour during the morning shows and repeat this during the prime time from 7 pm to 12 am for public service messages for fundraising for the construction of dams”. The directives were issued on the orders of the Supreme Court (dated July 11, 2018) as well as the additional attorney general. They further detailed that channels should hold telethons featuring “celebrities appealing the general public to donate generously for the noble cause” and have given channel managements three days to submit their reports on the telethon. The schedule for the PSAs is to be shared right away. Due to growing water shortage concerns in Pakistan, the SC, under the patronage of Chief Justice Mian Saqib has taken the task of crowdfunding for the construction of new dams. The SC has already started work on the matter by setting up accounts, for the purpose of collecting donations, at all banks across Pakistan.
Kashmiri students with beard expelled from Karnataka college ISLAMABAD APP
Four Kashmiri students studying at a Benguluru college in the Indian state of Karnataka have been barred from attending their nursing classes for growing beard. According to Kashmir Media Service, the students, three from the first year B.Sc (Nursing) and one from secondyear faced, the discrimination after Priyadarshini joined the college — the Adarsh College of Nursing in Mariyappana, Mallathahalli as the new principal nearly a month ago. Media reports said the principal has cited ‘hygiene’, to bar the students from taking their classes. “The students were told by the principal that if they fail to shave off their beard, their internal marks would be affected and they could face expulsion,” the reports claimed. “For the last one week, we are being sent out of class on instructions from the principal for not shaving our beards. The management was fine with our beards when we got our admission at the college. All of a sudden, the principal, who joined just 20 days ago, asked us to shave our beards and barred us from attending classes. The beards are part of our religion and I don’t understand why it should bother the principal. Even on Wednesday, we could attend only two classes and when the principal got to know of it, she asked the lecturers to send us out,” the students told the media. Justifying her decision, the college principal told the media that there was a need for students to be ‘disciplined and maintain hygiene’.
ISLAMABAD: Parliament House adorned with green lights ahead of the Independence Day. ONLINE
sc orders ecP to ensure voting system for exPats in by-Polls top JudgE givEs ElEctoral Body until Eid to dEvisE systEm that could assist Expats in ElEctoral procEss
Ecp oFFicial tElls cJp nisar ‘rts systEm did not Fail But slowEd down duE to high traFFic’
HE Supreme Court of Pakistan (SC) ordered the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) on Thursday to devise a method by which overseas Pakistanis could contribute in by-polls. A three-person member, headed by Chief Justice of Pakistan (CJP) Mian Saqib Nisar, ordered the ECP to have such a system ready by Eid. ECP Secretary Babar Yaqoob requested the bench that overseas Pakistanis should be able to vote in limited constituencies. The bench, however, rejected the plea, saying that they should be able to vote in all, not limited constituencies. “Their votes should be received through postal ballot papers,” the bench remarked. He told the bench that by-polls for 50 constituencies would be held between October 15 and 20 this year. The CJP regretting that although overseas Pakistanis had wished to vote in the General Election, a mechanism to allow this to happen could not be devised in time. The court was informed by Yaqoob that holding a by-poll on a single seat would set the national exchequer back by about Rs200 million. Justice Nisar remarked that those who contest elections from more than one constituency should have considered the additional costs of holding by-polls. “The amount could have been used to build dams in the
country,” he said. Justice Umar Ata Bandial wondered whether candidates who won elections on multiple seats, leaving several seats vacant, could be directed to pay for the by-polls held on those seats. The CJP asked the ECP secretary if politicians could be barred from contesting polls on more than one or two constituencies at a time, to which Yaqoob responded that the ECP had forwarded recommendations in this regard to the Parliament, but lawmakers had rejected them. “The parliament is supreme, what can we say,” the chief justice remarked. Yaqoob was questioned about the failure of electronic result transmission system (RTS) during general elections. He said that the system was “slow” due to large traffic as General Elections 2018 were the fifth largest in the world. The case hearing was adjourned till August 15. On Wednesday, the Senate Standing Committee on Interior had ordered an inquiry into allegations of
rigging in the July 25 polls and the failure of the RTS. Senator Rehman Malik had said that a parliamentary committee will look into the complaints regarding the failure of the RTS, adding that the new National Assembly speaker will constitute the committee to probe the allegations. Rehman had also asked the National Database and Regulatory Authority (NADRA) to brief the panel on August 20 about the RTS failure on the election day. Earlier this year, the apex court had asked the ECP and information technology (IT) experts to submit a report regarding online voting system for overseas Pakistanis by May 15. Before July 25 polls, the NADRA officials had said that no decision had yet been made with regard to the online voting facility for overseas Pakistanis. “Online voting for overseas Pakistanis can be tried in the bypolls,” the officials had said.
ppp workers booked for raising anti-judiciary slogans ISLAMABAD STAFF REPORT
A First Information Report (FIR) was registered against Pakistan People’s Party (PPP) workers on Thursday for raising anti-judiciary slogans during a protest of the grand opposition alliance outside the headquarters of Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) a day before. The newly-formed 11-party grand opposition alliance, named ‘Pakistan
Alliance for Free and Fair Elections’ protested outside the ECP office on Wednesday against alleged rigging in the general elections 2018. During the protest, the workers of the PPP chanted anti-judiciary slogans, mainly targeting Chief Justice of Pakistan (CJP) Mian Saqib Nisar. According to police sources, Imtiaz Raja and Kausar Gillani have been nominated in the FIR while the identification process of other protestors is underway through the video footages.
The Anti-Terrorism clauses have also been added in the case, the police said. Earlier this month, the Supreme Court held firebrand Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) leader Talal Chaudhry in contempt of court and sentenced him till the rising of the court. He was the third PML-N leader to be found guilty of contempt of court in ongoing year while the other two leaders are Nehal Hashmi and Daniyal Aziz. In April this year, Kasur police
booked 80 PML-N workers, five of them nominated, including local MNA and MPA for staging an anti-judiciary protest after the disqualification of former prime minister Nawaz Sharif in Panama case. Police claimed to have arrested 45 suspects, including MNA Waseem Akhtar, MPA Naeem Safdar, Kasur Municipal Committee Chairman Ayaz Khan, Vice Chairman Ahmad Latif, two UC chairmen Nasir Khan and Jamil Khan and as many councillors.
pia says mother, infant doing well after airconditioning failure Pakistan International Airlines (PIA) on Thursday came out on social media to update people on the health of the mother and ‘unconscious’ baby, who were on board in PK750 after which its airconditioning had reportedly stopped working, saying that both are doing fine. The national carrier’s tweet said, “The PIA CEO sent his representative to meet with the family and also called to find out about their welfare. The inquiry for the incident is underway. Our passengers are important to us.” We are very happy to share that mummy and baby from flight PK750 are doing well. The CEO PIA sent his representative to meet with the family and also called to find out about their welfare. The inquiry for the incident is underway. Our passengers are important to us.#PIA #WeCare A video of a baby who had allegedly fallen unconscious due to faulty air conditioning on a PIA flight was shared on social media and TV channels on Wednesday, prompting the national carrier’s spokesperson to take notice. The other passengers could also be heard demanding for the door to be opened, with some of them fanning the baby and others chanting “shame” at the officials. NEWS DESK
Pakistan expresses solidarity with KSA over tensions with Canada ISLAMABAD STAFF REPORT
A Ministry of Foreign Affairs spokesperson on Thursday said that Pakistan is immensely concerned with the crisis in the relations between Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (KSA) and Canada and places on record its solidarity with the former. “Pakistan always supports the sovereignty of states and the principle of non-interference in the internal affairs of other states. Both these aspects are enshrined in UN Charter and are among the basic tenets of international law, and the foundation of peaceful and friendly inter-state relations,” he said. “We fully agree with the statement of the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) secretary general that KSA enjoys immense respect at the regional and international level, as it does among the people of Pakistan,” he added. He further said, “Pakistan stands by KSA in protecting its sovereignty as a matter of principle and based on the historic and brotherly relations between our two countries.”
Friday, 10 August, 2018
Relationship with US Trust based?
O doubt the most important foreign policy challenge for the new government would be resetting the relationship with the United States. And since Imran Khan has been perhaps the most vocal political opponent of the US war since 2001, especially its drone programme which became central to the US war effort years ago, the direction of this new embrace will become clear in the first few months of the administration. However, Imran’s desire for a “trust-based relationship”, after demanding a ‘relationship of equals’ for years, betrays a certain distance from reality that might cost the new government in terms of time and resources. Imran has welcomed Washington’s decision to talk to the taliban after almost two decades of unceasing, and senseless, war. But clearly America, especially the trump Administration, could not care less what any other partner in the war might think. It has set itself the task of finally winding up the war that has already confounded two two-term administrations. And to do that it needs to come to an arrangement with the taliban. For that, of course, it needs Pakistan to play ball. It’s just as simple as that from Washington’s point of view. Also, Pak-US relationship is one of quantifiables, not trust or good will as such. they give us money for fighting a war and helping rein in rogue elements that allegedly shelter on our side of the border and attack US interests in Afghanistan. there are not many other angles, to be realistic, in this relationship. And this time Washington is, quite clearly, asking for more ‘do more’ from Islamabad. So much was hinted in Mike Pompeo’s speech, when he warned IMF against lending to Pakistan. While all experts are in agreement that America would never let a crucial country like Pakistan go belly up – we are facing default, after all – they also see Pompeo’s statement as just an extension of the ‘do more’ mantra; which means the money will be arranged as long as you accommodate our politics a little more. If Imran really wants a relationship based on trust, he must first work with the Americans to revise the working arrangement we already have in place.
Imran’s deputies In the provinces
good fortnight since the election and Imran Khan is still keeping his cards glued to his chest; at least with regard to the most important positions in Naya Pakistan. So far, the choice of KP CM might have left a little something to be desired, especially since the chairman himself put a question mark on his credentials when he was being shifted from one provincial ministry to another in the last electoral cycle. But the chatter about Punjab is encouraging and quite welcome. Should it prove true, we are finally going to have a young, enterprising – perhaps even Ivy Leaguer – chief minister with no charges of corruption, etc, against his name. Such a step, needless to say, would be a welcome departure from the current trend. the particular brand of democracy practiced in our Islamic Republic resembles a dictatorial family fiefdom – depending on which family is in power, of course – more than a manifestation of representative government. Whenever PML-N is in power the whole country knows, even prior to formal announcements, just which blue-eyed are likely to get which positions; the most prominent going to the family no doubt. And even though PPP supremo put a ‘people’s PM’, all power flowed from the presidency and his personal confidants and family. that does not mean that anything contrary to conventional practice would automatically deliver results. the just-ended cabinet of PML-N had its good share of foreign grads – including at least two Wharton boys. Yet it does amount to a much appreciated step in the right direction. the first step must be ending feudal tendencies in politics and getting able, qualified people at the helm of affairs. Once able and deserving people are placed in the right slots, though, the next big responsibility is ensuring there is no complacency. Not just Imran, PtI, the opposition and the press, but the public at large will also monitor the working of high offices in Naya Pakistan.
Dedicated to the legacy of the late Hameed Nizami
Arif Nizami Editor Aziz-ud-Din Ahmad
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Getting away with murder Can we expect a ‘tabdeeli’ against misuse of blasphemy law?
young artist living away from his city is killed. there is no mention in the news. About three weeks later, accusations of blasphemy charges appear. this time, the gory incident makes it to the headlines – also across the border, with social media on the forefront. Protests erupt around his native town. the reality behind the accusations remain murky, but certain on the society’s surface: to murder or get away with murder or to even demand a hearing, invoking the blasphemy law works best in Pakistan. Qutub Rind, an artist from Sindh living in Lahore to attend an art show, was murdered last month by the land owner of his flat over an issue of rental payment. the police claims this to be the only motive. However, one of the suspects has been alleged by Rind’s relatives of making false accusation of blasphemy, quoting as the real reason behind the murder. While many in support of Qutub have come forward to vouch for his ‘Sufi’ spirit, improbable to act blasphemous, the allegation itself is shrouded in mystery. Apparently, the murderers attempted to concoct a blasphemy charge in an attempt to sanctify their crime. Whether the security officials clarified that there was no blasphemy charge to avoid misconception or to protect the assailants in view of growing anger instead of sympathy against them, also remains unknown. But the very word – blasphemy – acted as a magnet. Jibran Nasir, activist and an independent candidate running for a National Assembly seat known for his views against the misuse of religion based laws, specially the blasphemy law, took to social media to air his findings. Writer Fatima Bhutto demanded justice for Qutub’s murder on false blasphemy charges. Journalists, fellow artists
all came out in support. It appears that the accused’s intention of getting away with murder by playing the blasphemy card acted on the contrary. However, it sadly projected the flimsy and superficial regard we hold for law and religion. It strengthened the belief that a brutal murder may be treated as just another incident, unless it is tagged with something more attention grabbing. this was evident by lack of any show of empathy by Rind’s fellow artists who must be aware of his tragic death, but did not protest his cold-blooded murder by a drug addict until the blasphemy charge surfaced. It clearly shows the false emotions we attach to the love of our Holy Prophet (pbuh), for if a law can be expanded to punish an act which violates his sanctity in particular, it can also be misused to justify a criminal act. this means that the name of the Holy Prophet (pbuh) is untruthfully invoked in a situation where there was probably no mention of him. If this is not an example of blasphemy, what else is? In 1986, after many heated debates and show of emotions, death penalty was added to the proposed anti-blasphemy law of that time, Section 295-C of the Pakistan Penal Code. the then minister of state for justice and parliamentary affairs, Mir Nawaz Khan Marwat, had declared: ‘In my opinion with this (amendment) adequate sentence has been made for blasphemers and in future no one will dare to commit blasphemy of the Holy Prophet.’ Yet 30 years later, the opposite seems to be true. the very next year in 1987, when the penal code was passed and made into a law after presidential approval, 13 cases against alleged blasphemy were filed. In the years, 2005, 2008, 2009 and 2014, the figure crossed 100. Not only cases continued where accusations involving blasphemy were hurled, an increasing and disturbing trend emerged of these accusations stemming from a reason to settle scores or personal vengeance. Since blasphemy charges are not investigated like other charges, accusers saw it as an easily justified motive to send someone behind bars and ensure that the victim stays there. Asia Bibi is one of the most prominent examples of a victim of false accusation involving a blasphemy charge. It’s been more than a decade since she was convicted and despite much sympathy, is languishing in jail. Former minister for minorities Shahbaz Bhatti and former governor Punjab Salmaan taseer were meted out with death blows by religious extremists for supporting her release. the murderer of taseer, his own security
guard, was promptly nabbed and hanged to death, but lives on as a ‘martyr’ in the illiterate minds of people. His picture even garnered votes this election. His grave has been converted to a mausoleum still thronged by devotees and no one in the country has the courage to raze the undeserving tribute. On the other hand, Mashal Khan, another victim of a false accusation killed too early before his bright ideas and courageous self could add to the nation’s strength, rests in a simple grave in his hometown, shaded by a grove of poplar trees. His case is also still pending in the court, with only a handful of assailants from a mob of over 60 behind bars for publicly lynching Mashal to death. As a journalist and a writer, I am often advised not to write on blasphemy. People dread to be associated with the issue, for the very word means death for a person who is involved. Blasphemy cases have been reported to be either rushed hurriedly in criminal courts, with the nervous judge signing off the death penalty for the accused, whether true or false, to save his own neck from the ire of zealots, or are hushed up with decisions pending for years. But if a blasphemy charge can be levied on a person by anyone and punishment can be awarded without thorough investigation, why isn’t action taken when it is proved that the accusation made was false? Why isn’t the same blasphemy charge and its punishment given to a person who is proved to have invoked the law falsely for personal reasons? Why do the authorities not realise that misuse of the law is more prevalent than prevention of inciting incidents, the primary reason for which the original colonial law was amended? Qutub Rind, a budding artist is brutally murdered. the culprit, in order to save his own life, has possibly made a false accusation of blasphemy. Now he seems to have retracted, the police has denied the charge, but the damage has been done. Rind has lost his life, his promising work remains unfinished. the media hype has crossed borders. the only positive outcome has been the failure of the assailant to wrongly justify his criminal act. But justice would truly be imparted if he is duly punished for both the crime and an attempt for its false cover up, or else, the society would continue to use religion to provoke emotions, to settle a case and to get away with murder, like it has in the past. Shabana Mahfooz is a freelance contributor.
Of mindsets and attitudes The illusion of perfection
Dania EhtEsham ZahiD
t was sweltering hot. the sun had no intention of showing any mercy today. I felt as if I was half baked already. I was already late in picking up my daughter from her school. With one eye on the road, I was switching through radio channels, when the words: “Being a perfectionist is actually a drawback” caught my attention and I stopped channel shuffling. Soon I got lost in my own thoughts, realising how many of us use the phrase “I’m a perfectionist” quite often and I couldn’t help but wonder what exactly it meant to be a perfectionist? A perfectionist wants everything to be “perfect”. Perfect? Is there anything that is actually perfect? the word perfect in simple terms means faultless, absolute or complete. taking this further a perfectionist is someone who refuses to accept anything short of perfection. In this regard the word “Perfect” becomes very subjective. Something which is flawless for some people might be seen as something faulty by others. By saying “I Karachi – Ph: 021-35381208-9
want everything to be perfect or I’m a perfectionist we are limiting ourselves and closing ourselves to new experiences. It is a limiting belief system where we restrict ourselves by setting our own glass ceiling. Perfectionists have a few common traits such as; they will generally be finding fault in almost everything and they tend to set very high standards for themselves in mostly all spheres of life. the downside is; when faced with failure they tend to be very hard on themselves. this leads to high stress and other disorders. they have an inner voice which is constantly telling them they aren’t good enough. they could’ve/should’ve done better. they don’t deserve this/that. the critical inner voice in a perfectionist makes a case for a way of life which is self-defeating. It holds one back from being ones most productive and creative self. It hinders interaction in relationships and in professional areas. the irony is while everyone wants to be their best; perfectionists when faced with roadblocks tend to have severe emotional outbreaks. Serena Williams is one famous personality with this issue. She has been known to break her rackets – and not just that but her outbursts have even cost her the game at times. there are many studies that suggest that the higher the perfectionism criteria, the more psychological disorders one is going to suffer — disorders such as hypertension, depression, anorexia, obsessive compulsive disorder, insomnia, chronic fatigue, hoarding and suicide are just a few of them. Now let’s not confuse perfec-
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tionism with some other positive traits in a personality. In some cultures, perfectionism is highly valued and appreciated but researchers have found that it’s the qualities of being conscientious which are mislabelled as perfectionism. the difference being that a conscientious person sets high goals for themselves works hard and strives for excellence. In this process the person doesn’t blame oneself if things don’t work out. Making mistakes, owning them and learning from them are a part of life and the process of growing up. Perfectionists on the other hand avoid making mistakes and thereby hinder themselves in reaching their goals. I’ve noticed many a times that a perfectionist would look down upon a person who isn’t one of their kind. We all have come across people who seem to breeze through life and stir a feeling of jealousy among those who can’t or don’t. these breezy people are a complete opposite of perfectionists. they are easy going and laid back. It’s not that they don’t have problems to face but their attitude towards these problems makes it easy for them to solve the issue-or so it seems. the “non-perfectionists” have an attitude that might be confused with being carefree but in actual case they usually take things in a stride. their feathers aren’t ruffled easily so to say. And when the going gets tough they just roll up the sleeves and get dirty readily. Such people are no less ambitious, as mentioned earlier conscientiousness shouldn’t be confused with perfectionism and neither should being ambitious. It’s
the way a certain situation is handled and a certain mindset towards life. In todays’ day and age perfectionism is on the rise. Digitalisation, AI are all aids in the pursuit of perfection. Competition in education and jobs has increased, so has the fear of failure. From students to young professionals to working mothers all strive to a level of perfectionism set in their minds. the social media is also playing its due role in promoting the ideals of perfectionism. Everyone on Facebook and Instagram is living a “perfect” happy successful life. Only the person posting pictures knows what goes on behind scenes. Some form of perfectionist has crept up in almost all of us. Whether it’s good or bad, in my opinion, depends on how much we allow our inner critical self to dominate our thinking process. We need to allow imperfections in our life and accept them as a part of us. In life rarely do things go as planned. Life always tends to take its own course. It will keep a trick or two under its sleeve only to take it out when we least expect it. It brings with it all perfections and imperfections. that’s what makes life interesting. PS: Remember why we love taking the roller coasters? the plunge makes our heart beat faster and the ride up takes our breath away. that pretty much sums up life! Dania Ehtesham Zahid is an internationally certified NLP Life Coach, who has been coaching top executives in the Middle East to founders in Silicon Valley. Based out of Dubai, she can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org
Friday, 10 August, 2018
Send your letters to: Letters to Editor, Pakistan today, 4-Shaarey Fatima Jinnah, Lahore, Pakistan. E-mail: email@example.com Letters should be addressed to Pakistan today exclusively
Waiting for akhand bharat
Approaching Pakistan’s current economic challenge Pressure on all fronts
Dr omEr JavED
AKIStAN’S economy is currently facing challenges on both macroeconomic and growth fronts. On the macroeconomic front, challenges remain primarily on rising fiscal and current account deficits, while the average growth of around five per cent in recent years has not been able to trickle down enough to reduce income inequality gap and poverty level, where the rate is now around one-third of the population, 30 per cent to be precise, being below the poverty line. Given the deteriorating economic conditions raising eye-brows especially after the country’s completion of the Extended Fund Facility (EFF) programme with International Monetary Fund (IMF), meant for bringing both external reserves cushion and structural reforms, auditing indicates here that the programme could not create needed boost in export performance and foreign investment, at the same time neither providing sustainable BOP (Balance of Payments) reserves cushion, nor bringing calm in servicing rising external debt. Since the late 1980s, after which Pakistan actively went into successive IMF programmes, I think it is only twice that it has completed a programme. that is why it has been coined as a ‘one-tranche country’. Actually, IMF loan comes in instalments after usually quarterly reviews where the first few instalments are generally front-loaded and also bulky, compared to the later ones; a design issue that persisted with successive programmes, even after having the knowledge that Pakistan left incomplete programmes! Hence, commitment to programme objectives faded later in the programme, since the objective seemed like gaining quick bucks for BOP support. the easily available IMF money has provided successive governments with fiscal space to evade hard economic reforms on one hand, while on the other hand policy milieu of IMF lacks needed commitment on institutional development, and constrains growth and employment by focusing on re-
stricting the demand side of the economy. Policy makers in Pakistan and in multilaterals need to revisit their approach, shifting from one of neo-liberal, Washington-consensus style orthodox economic policy, to that of heterodox, political economic contextualised institutional development, that is more informed in terms of behavioural aspects. this is all the more important to do since the previous IMF programmes have remained unsuccessful in dealing with the slippages on both the macroeconomic and growth fronts, especially soon after when they ended. What is more important is that income inequality and poverty have continued to remain a major concern, pointing towards lack of overall corrective policy and as negotiated in IMF programmes to improve upon the distributional consequences of growth. For tackling this, rather than just focusing on isolated initiatives in improving the ‘structures’ of certain specific sectors like energy or subsidy provision, policy will need to attack the current institutional design, which is prejudiced in its support of businesses that provide support in electioneering. Unfair competition, tax and incentive policies have created a select group of favoured cartels, may that be the banking/financial sector or the real sector. For example, for raising bank borrowing for meeting fiscal needs, governments have left banks and financial institutions weakly regulated, allowing them to channel loanable funds to governments at high interest rates. this has kept on one side funds away from domestic investors, and on the other have meant banks earning high profits by keeping also the deposit rates low (high spread in other words). On the real sector side, using SROs (Statutory Regulatory Orders) and preferential policy parameters, specific industry and agriculturists have been given preference in subsidy initiatives and tax relief. these unfair ‘rules of the game’ have meant that in Pakistan the problem is not lack of overall competition and poor business conditions for the overall economy, but inequality of competition and bad business
conditions for many for the benefit of few. these few are allowed these favours by political elites at the back of seeking their monetary support for running election campaigns. this has had negative consequences for both the economy where oligopolies and oligarchies are in effect shaping policy, to each others’ advantage, while the many in the economy have been marginalised to low-end jobs and misery. On the democratic side, the withering of the middle class has meant that given strong correlation between election campaign funding and election results, only the ‘men of weights’ or the wealthy few have disenfranchised the many out of the democratic realm, since these many have rightly realised over time that they have little or no say in policy. Any future economic policy endeavour will be futile, if it does not attack this ‘institutional design’ which is extractive in nature, allowing political and economic elites to connive and extract resources and control over policy, in turn taking it from the hands of the many, to the hands of the few. Programmes with IMF will also have to be formulated, if at all, with focus on the improving institutions to beat this design. therefore, isolated discussion of macroeconomic indicators like the twin deficit will be hard to deal with successfully if this overarching institutional design is not challenged by putting in place inclusive institutions, well incentivised underlying organisational structures, and appropriate regulators. A first step here would also to be to have sound data, since IMF programmes and policy in general all basically rely on data that the national authorities provide. Currently, the state of data is suspect due to apparent lack of capacity and independence of data colleting organisations.
Any future economic policy endeavour will be futile, if it does not attack this ‘institutional design’ which is extractive in nature, allowing political and economic elites to connive and extract resources and control over policy
Dr Omer Javed holds PhD in Economics degree from the university of Barcelona (Spain). A former economist at International Monetary Fund, his work focuses on institutional and political economy, macroeconomic stability, and economic growth.
A bitter lesson of history is that India’s initial objective was not to convert the whole of East Pakistan into Bangladesh. ‘India aimed at nothing higher than capturing sizable chunk of territory to establish Bangladesh government from Calcutta and transfer the bulk of her refugee burden to the liberated area’ (Siddiq Salik, Witness to Surrender, p 212). But, a distraught ‘tiger Niazi’ signed surrender document, instead of a ceasefire agreement. Pursuant to fall of Dacca, the victorious Indians were least bothered about protecting innocent civilians. ‘the Indians were busy removing the plunder of their victory to India. Large convoys of trains and trucks moved military hardware, foodstuffs, industrial produce and household goods including refrigerators, carpets and television sets’…the khaki of the Pakistani soldiers had been replaced by the green uniform of the Indian army. the Bengalis …were flabbergasted at a change which may well augur a new and worse era of domination. Had they merely changed yokes? (ibid p 212). India’s insincerity to Bangladesh stands unmasked. According to its national register of citizenship, India now dubs Bengali refugees or settlers after 1951 as ‘infiltrators’. the register establishes genealogical family trees going back till 1951. the forebears of some Assamese Muslims go back 500-700 years, but they have no document to prove their nationality. India is all set to drive ‘infiltrators’ out. Most of the settlers were sheltered during 1971 war as precious raw material for mukti bahini. What a journey from ‘Bangladesh zindabad’ (joi bangla) to ‘drive out Bengalis (bongla kheda). M ASghAr Islamabad
IMF bailout plan PAKIStAN is likely to negotiate its 15th economic package with IMF, and unless those who hold reins of power are willing to force everybody earning above threshold to pay taxes, irrespective of whether they are salaried or traders etc, this country will slide into bottomless pit. Hopefully Imran Khan’s symbolic steps of austerity would force others to follow suit and put a stop to extravagant lifestyle of paid civil and uniformed officers at taxpayer’s account. Critics must know that other than state guests or declared dependent family members of President of USA, all personal guests who have food in White House, a token amount is deducted from his salary. As long as those holding public offices are simultaneously involved in conflicts of interest, the state will lose and individuals benefit. Every paisa spent must be audited transparently. the only way to seek economic self-sustainability is to promote growth, forcefully ensure taxes, and punish corrupt and those involved in pilfering. Welfare by state must be only for deprived, and this abuse of subsidised plot allotments must stop. Revenues should be raised by selling plots to general public on market rates, ensuring that green agriculture producing belts and forest etc are not touched. the State must confine itself only to regulating affairs of state, ensuring supply of clean drinking water and unadulterated food items, providing health and education etc, while ensuring that industries involved in export generation adhere to internationally accepted items. Import of expensive luxury limousines must cease. the practice of using private Executive Jets, other than when necessary, and needless foreign junkets must cease and so must this practice of declaring private houses spread over acres as camp offices in presence of state guest houses. MALIk TArIq ALI Lahore
U-turn to PM house? PAKIStAN’S General Election 2018 marked success for country’s former cricketer turned politician Imran Khan. Soon after getting lead by 110 seats in National Assembly, Khan laid victory speech, poise to become Prime Minister of Pakistan. Khan revealed his future plans after establishing government in the capital. Besides of assuring Accountability, tax reforms and Foreign policy reforms, Khan claimed to change PM’s house into educational institution. He also litigated to convert governor houses into hotels and public spaces to get revenue for the country. Khan’s speech got international coverage while people applauded his plans. But the Questions is: Will Khan be able to convert PM house into public university or it will be his another U-turn. PM House is located in Red zone which is considered most sensitive area of twin cities. Most of federal offices are situated here including National Assembly, Senate, Supreme Court and President House. Is it appropriate to have a public university at such susceptible zone? Isn’t it a threat for national security as most of head offices of National institutions are situated there. the Grand Hayat towers (twin towers) have also been posed a security threat to diplomatic mission by Interior ministry according to CDA’s report submitted to Public accounts commission in 2015. After scrapping of such a vast project due to its risky location, it’s a big challenge for Khan to maintain his decision of converting PM house into Public University. If Khan makes this happen, difference between VIP class and lower middle class might also get a bit reduced. MuhAMMAD JABrAAN BAShIr Lahore
10 FOREIGN NEWS
Friday, 10 August, 2018
SAUDI coALItIoN’S ‘LeGItImAte mILItARy ActIoN’ KILLS 43 IN yemeN’S NoRtH SANAA
Saudi-led coalition battling in Yemen said it carried out an attack in the rebel-held north on Thursday that the Red Cross said hit a bus carrying children, leaving dozens of people dead or wounded. The coalition called the strike a "legitimate military action" that targeted Iran-backed Huthi rebels responsible for a deadly missile attack on the Saudi city of Jizan on Wednesday. But the International Committee of the Red Cross said the strike hit a bus filled with children, causing dozens of casualties. "Following an attack this morning on a bus driving children in Dahyan Market, northern Saada, (an ICRC-supported) hospital has received dozens of dead and wounded," the organisation said on Twitter without giving more details. "Under international humanitar-
ian law, civilians must be protected during conflict," the ICRC added. The Huthi rebels' Al-Masirah TV reported that 43 people had been killed and 51 wounded, "mostly children". It was not possible to independently verify the toll. "Does the world really need more innocent children’s lives to stop the cruel war on children in Yemen?" the UN children's agency asked. Geert Cappelaere, UNICEF's re-
UK says Russia needs to know there is a price to pay for using chemical weapons LONDON: States like Russia that use or condone the use of chemical weapons need to know there is a price to pay, British Foreign Secretary Jeremy Hunt said on Thursday. Washington said on Wednesday it would impose new sanctions on Russia by the end of August after it determined that Moscow had used a nerve agent against a former Russian agent and his daughter in Britain. "If we are going to stop chemical and biological weapons - including nerve agents - becoming a new and horrific 21st cent (century) norm, states like Russia that use or condone their use need to know there is a price to pay. Thank you USA for standing firm with us on this," Hunt said on Twitter. agencies
Dozens of Afghan soldiers killed in attack on base last week KABUL: Dozens of bodies of Afghan soldiers have been found in a military base that Taliban militants stormed last week in the embattled southern province of Uruzgan, officials said on Thursday. The attack in Chinartu district last Friday underlined the ferocity of fighting in many areas of Afghanistan even as speculation has increased about a possible ceasefire during a religious holiday this month. "We have discovered and transported 40 bodies from the area, so far," district governor Faiz Mohammad said, adding that a number of members of the security forces were still missing. News of the attack only began filtering out over the past two days. Muhammad Radmanish, a spokesman for the ministry of defense, said 27 Afghan soldiers were killed and five wounded. The base was back under control of security forces, said Radmanish but the attack has caused significant damage and weapons losses. Amir Muhammad Barekzai, a member of the provincial council, said some soldiers appeared to have been shot after they were captured but it was not possible to obtain independent confirmation. Zabihullah Mujahid, a spokesman for the Taliban said 46 members of the Afghan security forces were killed in the Uruzgan clashes. "Afghan soldiers were not killed in Taliban detention centers," he said. The attack underlines the heavy losses being suffered by security forces as they fight the Taliban. A US Congressional watchdog, SIGAR, said in a report last year the losses were "shockingly high" but Afghan authorities no longer release overall casualty data. The Taliban are fighting the Western-backed government to restore their version of sharia, or Islamic law, after they were driven out by US-led forces in 2001. agencies
gional director in the Middle East and North Africa, said all the children on the bus were "reportedly under the age of 15". "STOP CRUELTy AGAINST CHILDREN.. No Excuses anymore!" the agency said. The coalition, which also includes the United Arab Emirates, intervened in 2015 to try to restore the internationally recognised government after the rebels drove it out of
the capital Sanaa. Saudi Arabia shot down a missile fired by the Huthis on Wednesday, with debris killing a Yemeni man and wounding 11 others, the coalition said. The missile was fired from the rebel-held Yemeni province of Amran towards Jizan, the coalition said. "The coalition will take all necessary measures against the terrorist, criminal acts of the Huthi militia, such as recruiting child soldiers, throwing them in battlefields and using them as tools," coalition spokesman Turki al-Maliki said, referring to Thursday's attack. The Huthis have in recent months ramped up missile attacks against Saudi Arabia, which Riyadh usually says it intercepts. Wednesday's attack brings the tally to 165 rebel missiles launched since 2015, according to the coalition, which that year joined the Yemeni government's fight against Huthi rebels.
Syrian army urges people in Idlib to agree return of state rule BEIRUT: The Syrian army urged people in rebel-held Idlib province to agree to a return of state rule and told them the war was nearing its end in leaflets dropped over the northwestern region on Thursday. Idlib, at the Turkish border, is one of the last major rebel strongholds in Syria. President Bashar al-Assad, who has defeated rebels across much of Syria with Russian and Iranian help, has indicated it could be his next target. The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said additional government forces were arriving for a possible attack in an area to the southwest of Idlib city that overlaps with Latakia and Hama provinces. Syrians have fled to Idlib province from other parts of the country as the government has advanced, and the United Nations has warned that an offensive there could force 2.5 million people towards the Turkish border in the event of an offensive. NATO member Turkey has warned against any offensive in Idlib, and is pressing Russia to make sure this doesn't happen. Turkey has established 12 military observation posts in the northwest under an agreement
with Russia and Iran. U.N. humanitarian adviser Jan Egeland said on Thursday that Russia, Turkey and Iran had said they would do their utmost to avoid a battle in Idlib. But he added that the U.N. was making preparations and that he would ask Turkey to keep its borders open for fleeing civilians. "Your cooperation with the Syrian Arab Army will release you from the rule of militants and terrorists, and will preserve your and your families' lives," declared the leaflets that were dropped in rural areas near Idlib city. "We call upon you to join local reconciliation (agreements) as many others in Syria have done," said the leaflet in the name of the army command, a copy of which was seen by Reuters. Such agreements, concluded at the local level, have been a tool for helping the Syrian government to reestablish control over numerous areas and have often been agreed when rebel fighters are on the brink of military defeat. The government says the agreements grant an amnesty to rebels who are willing to live under state rule again, unless private law suits have been
brought against them. The terms also include that they give up weapons. But many rebels, civilian dissidents and others have instead opted to take safe passage to the opposition-held northwest, an arc of territory at the Turkish border that stretches from Idlib to the city of Jarablus on the Euphrates River. Idlib is controlled by an array of insurgent groups, but jihadists are widely assessed to be the dominant force there. RUSSIA AND IRAN KEEN TO AvOID BLOODBATH IN SyRIA'S IDLIB: UN Russia, Iran and Turkey told a meeting of the Syria humanitarian taskforce on Thursday that they would do their utmost to avoid a battle that would threaten millions of civilians in rebel-held Idlib, UN humanitarian adviser Jan Egeland said. He estimated that there were 4 million or more people in the potential battleground in northwest Syria and he hoped diplomats and military envoys could reach a deal to avoid a "bloodbath". But he said the UN was making preparations for a battle and would ask Turkey to keep its borders open to allow civilians to flee if the need arose. agencies
North Korea urges US not to adhere to 'old scenarios' after summit SEOUL: North Korea's Foreign Ministry said on Thursday progress on denuclearization promises made in a historic US-N Korea summit in June cannot be expected if the United States adheres to "old scenarios" that have failed. The state-run KCNA carried a statement from the spokesman for the ministry, saying the will to implement the promises made at the summit has not changed. agencies
Death toll from Greek forest fire rises to 93, victims named ATHENS: Greek authorities have released the names of those who died in the country's deadliest forest fire in decades, a list that includes several families. The death toll from the July 23 fire at the seaside resort of Mati rose to 93 on Thursday, after a 78-year-old woman in intensive care died of her injuries. She's the 10th person to have died in the hospital from injuries sustained in the fire. Another 34 fire victims remain hospitalized, including six in intensive care. More than half of those who died were over 60, the list revealed, including some who perished with their grandchildren. In all, 11 children died in the fire, including two sets of twin girls and a 6-month-old infant, the son of a firefighter called to duty that day. agencies
Hezbollah says Lebanon govt delay risks 'slide towards tension' BEIRUT: The parliamentary bloc of Lebanon's Hezbollah group said on Thursday that delay in forming a new government risked Lebanon sliding "towards tension". "(The delay) has started to risk sliding towards tension ... and we warn of the dangers of this," the group said in a televised statement read out after the weekly meeting of its parliamentary bloc. Lebanon held a general election on May 6, in which the Shi'ite Hezbollah and its parliamentary allies won a majority of seats. But the country's rival blocs have not yet agreed on the composition of a new cabinet. Designated prime minister Saad al-Hariri, a Sunni, and other leading Lebanese politicians have also urged parties to rapidly agree on a new parliament to help support the country's fragile economy. Political rivalry led to years of governmental paralysis in Lebanon and the country did not produce a state budget from 2005 until last year. May's elections were the first in nine years. The International Monetary Fund has said Lebanon urgently needs to address its fiscal policy to make its high levels of public debt sustainable. agencies
Landslides caused by monsoon rains kill 19 in southern India NEW DELHI: Landslides triggered by heavy monsoon rains have killed at least 19 people in southern India, cutting off road links and submerging several villages. Kerala state's disaster management agency said 11 deaths have been reported since Wednesday from Idukki district alone. Many areas are submerged after authorities opened the sluice gates of an overflowing Idamalayar dam. Wayanad district has been completely cut off by landslides and the state government has sought the army's help to restore the road network to the hill district. agencies
US can't be trusted, Iran's Rouhani tells North Korea SEOUL/BEIRUT agencies
Iranian President Hassan Rouhani told North Korea's foreign minister that the United States cannot be trusted, Tehran's state media said, as the United States seeks a deal to rein in the North's nuclear and missile programs. Iran dismissed a last-minute offer from Washington for talks this week, saying it could not negotiate after the Trump administration reneged on a 2015 deal to lift sanctions in return for curbs on Iran's own nuclear program. North Korea's top diplomat, Ri Yong Ho, visited Iran as the United States reintroduced sanctions against the Islamic Republic. "The US administration performance in these years has led the country to be considered untrustworthy and unreliable around the world which does not meet any of its obligations," Rouhani was quoted by the Islamic Republic News Agency (IRNA) as telling Ri on Wednesday. "In the current situation, friendly countries should develop their relations and cooperation in (the) international community," he said, adding Iran and North
Korea have "always had close views" on many issues. Ri traveled to Tehran after attending a security forum in Singapore, where he and US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo sparred over an agreement made at June's landmark summit between Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un. The two sides vowed to work toward North Korea's denuclearization at the summit, but have since
struggled to reach a deal to meet that goal. North Korea has been pursuing its weapons programs in defiance of U.N. Security Council resolutions and sanctions.Ri told Rouhani that Washington's pullout from the 2015 pact and restoration of sanctions was an "action against international rules and regulations", IRNA said. "North Korea's strategic policy is to deepen relations with the Islamic Republic of Iran and confront unilateralism," he said. Trump decided to restore sanctions against Iran despite pleas from other world powers that had co-sponsored the deal, including Washington's main European allies, Britain, France and Germany, as well as Russia and China. The sanctions have already led banks and many companies around the world to scale back dealings with Iran. Companies doing business with Iran will be barred from the United States, Trump said on Tuesday. Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, the highest authority in Iran, said the country had nothing to be concerned about, his official website said on Wednesday. "With regard to our situation do not be worried at all. Nobody can do anything," Khamenei said, the website reported. "They can be sure. There is no doubt about this."
FOREIGN NEWS 11
Friday, 10 August, 2018
SoUtH SUDAN PReSIDeNt KIIR GRANtS mAcHAR, otHeR ReBeLS AmNeSty JUBA
RESIDENT Salva Kiir granted a general amnesty to rebels in South Sudan's civil war, including his former deputy Riek Machar, as a rights organization said authorities in Africa's youngest country should also free its unarmed critics. The amnesty order was read out on state-run television late on Wednesday, three days after Kiir, SPLM-IO leader Machar and the heads of other groups signed a ceasefire and power-sharing agreement in the Sudanese capital Khartoum. A political row between Kiir and Machar degenerated in 2013 into a war that has killed tens of thousands, forced a quarter of the population to flee their homes and wrecked the country's oil-dependent economy. The conflict has often been fought along ethnic lines. Previous deals to end it have failed, including one in 2015 that briefly halted hostilities but fell apart
after Machar returned to the capital Juba the following year. SPLM-IO is the largest of the rebel groups fighting Kiir's government, and fighters allied to it control several areas close to the capital. Other anti-government groups have also emerged, some of which have fought against each other. Lam Paul Gabriel, SPLM-IO's deputy military spokesman, said the amnesty will only be genuine once Kiir
more than 2,000 evacuated to remove WWII-era bomb in Poland WARSAW: Polish police say they are evacuating more than 2,000 people after the discovery of an unexploded World War II-era bomb weighing some 250 kilograms (550 pounds). The bomb was discovered in the Oder River in the town of Glogow, an area of southwestern Poland that was part of Germany during the war. Lukasz Szulikowski, an official with the Glogow police, told the PAP news agency that authorities are evacuating some 2,000 to 3,000 people in the area by bus to a nearby school ahead of the removal of the bomb. He said the bomb was discovered during the cleaning of the river bottom. agencies
observes all the conditions agreed upon in the deal signed on Sunday. "Machar can only come to Juba after the pre-interim period when the unified forces are deployed in Juba and other major towns in South Sudan," he said. Machar was freed this year from house arrest in South Africa where he had been held since fleeing South Sudan in 2016. "It will now give Machar much
confidence, including others (who are) estranged a genuine reason to return to the country without the fear of the replication of the 2016 incident," Majak Daniel, a Juba-based journalist, told Reuters. Human Rights Watch called on Thursday for the release of a number of government critics jailed by the intelligence services, including Peter Biar Ajak, a prominent economist who has criticized both sides in the war. "South Sudanese authorities should release everyone being held arbitrarily and change the way the national security agency operates," Jehanne Henry, associate Africa director at the New York-based rights organization said in a statement. Biar, a country director for the London School of Economics' International Growth Centre and a former World Bank economist, was arrested by officers of the agency in July. "A lot still is needed such as the cessation of hostilities and ending the war of words," said Samuel, a 32-year-old resident of Juba.
Mahathir calls for more mutual understanding to avoid wars
LONDON: Britain's governing Conservative Party will ask a panel to investigate whether former Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson breached its code of conduct with a column comparing women who wear face-covering veils to mail boxes and bank robbers. The party has received complaints about the comments, and under Conservative rules they must be investigated by an independent panel. Possible penalties include expulsion from the party. The party declined to give details Thursday, saying that the process is confidential. Johnson, who quit the government last month over Brexit, wrote in the Daily Telegraph that it was "absolutely ridiculous that people should choose to go around looking like letter boxes." Johnson's comments were criticized by Muslim groups and politicians including Prime Minister Theresa May, who urged Johnson to apologize. He has not said sorry. agencies
Russia to work on retaliatory measures against new US sanctions: Foreign ministry MOSCOW: Russian Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova said on Thursday that Moscow was starting to work on retaliatory measures after the United States announced a new round of sanctions against Moscow. Washington said on Wednesday it was imposing fresh sanctions on Russia by the end of August after determining that Moscow had used a nerve agent against a former Russian agent and his daughter in Britain, something the Kremlin denies. Zakharova told reporters at a briefing that no evidence had been presented to prove Russia's blame, and that the pretext for the new round of sanctions had been made up. agencies
6 journalists, including DW reporter, detained in Belarus
Koreas to hold highlevel talks to prepare for leaders' summit SEOUL: The two Koreas will hold highlevel talks next week to prepare for a third summit between the South's President Moon Jae-in and the North's leader Kim Jong Un, Seoul said Thursday, as a diplomatic rapprochement takes hold. Although the South's unification ministry did not elaborate on where the summit would take place, Moon had previously agreed to visit Kim in Pyongyang during the autumn after the two men held a historic meeting in April. In a statement the ministry said the two sides would hold high-level talks on Monday on the Northern side of the truce village of Panmunjom to "discuss preparatory matters regarding a South-North summit". The overture came from Pyongyang, the ministry said, which suggested Thursday the two sides hold talks to "review progress" since the April summit that paved the way for a landmark meeting between Kim and US President Donald Trump in Singapore in June. agencies
UK conservatives to investigate Boris Johnson burqa comments
BEPPU: Malaysia's leader called Thursday for more international exchanges among young people as a way to prevent war and terrorism, as he received an honorary degree from a like-minded university in Japan. Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad said that eradicating terrorism requires more than a good defense. "I believe that merely fighting against terrorism will not put an end to terrorism," he said at Ritsumeikan Asia Pacific University in southern Japan. "We must know the reason why these people resort to terrorism, and if we know the reason, and we deal with the reason,
then there is a chance that we can stop the acts of terror." More broadly, he said that greater mutual understanding would provide opportunities to resolve conflict through means other than violence. To that end, he praised Ritsumeikan Asia Pacific University for its multinational student body, saying that should be the trend at all universities. The school was founded in 2000 as a place for future global leaders to study together and develop an understanding of each other's cultures and ways of life. It has many students from elsewhere in Asia, as
well as other parts of the world. "If we are going to have good relations between different countries, we must know each other," said Mahathir, an honorary member of the school's advisory committee. Mahathir is wrapping up a fourday visit to Kyushu, the southernmost of Japan's four main islands. He earlier gave the keynote address at a seminar for future Japanese leaders and visited a training center at JR Kyushu, a railway company that operates the high-speed bullet train. It is his second visit to Japan since becoming prime minister in May for the second time. agencies
MINSK: Authorities in Belarus have detained six journalists in what is being seen by rights activists as an attack on freedom of speech. Belarus' Investigative Committee on Thursday confirmed the detention of six journalists, including Deutsche Welle's Paulyuk Bykowski. DW lodged a protest. Authorities say the journalists are charged with getting unsanctioned access to state news agency BelTA, and failing to pay for its information. They face up to two years in prison if convicted. Belarusian rights activist Alex Bialiatski denounced the detentions as an attempt by authorities to establish control over leading online media, noting that the "government decided to establish full control over the internet." Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenko has ruled the ex-Soviet nation of 10 million since 1994, cracking down on dissent and free media and maintaining Soviet-style control over its economy. agencies
Myanmar to ICC: Rohingya jurisdiction request 'should be dismissed' yANGON: Myanmar said on Thursday a request by the International Criminal Court (ICC) prosecutor to seek jurisdiction over suspected deportations of Rohingya Muslims from Myanmar to Bangladesh was "meritless and should be dismissed". Judges at the court had asked Myanmar to respond to the request by July 27. The office of government leader Aung San Suu Kyi outlined reasons why Myanmar has declined to engage with the court on the matter and why it would not submit a response. "The request by the prosecutor may be interpreted as an indirect attempt to acquire jurisdiction over Myanmar which is not a State Party to the Rome Statute," the office said in a statement, referring to the ICC's founding treaty.
Reuters was not able to immediately reach the ICC for comment. The jurisdiction of the worldâ€™s first permanent war crimes court is limited to crimes committed on the territory of member states, or in cases referred to it by the U.N. Security Council. But ICC prosecutor Fatou Bensouda has asked the court to look into the Rohingya crisis and the court has sought the views of Bangladesh on the "exercise of territorial jurisdiction over the alleged deportation of members of the Rohingya people from Myanmar into Bangladesh". Suu Kyi's office said Myanmar was "under no obligation to enter into litigation with the prosecutor" and setting the jurisdiction over the case would "set a dangerous precedent whereby future populistic causes and complaints against nonState Parties ... may be litigated."
Myanmar has also alleged procedural irregularities and lack of transparency on
the court's part. Bensouda has said that, given the
cross-border nature of the crime of deportation, a ruling in favour of ICC jurisdiction would be in line with established legal principles. However, she acknowledged uncertainty around the definition of the crime of deportation and limits of the courtâ€™s jurisdiction. About 700,000 Rohingya Muslims, according to U.N. estimates, fled from Buddhist-majority Myanmar to Bangladesh after a military crackdown in August 2017 that the United Nations has called ethnic cleansing. Refugees have reported killings, rape and arson on a large scale, but Myanmar has denied nearly all of the accusations, saying it waged a legitimate counter-insurgency operation after coming under attack from Rohingya militants. agencies
12 BUSINESS Agri credit disbursement increased to Rs 972.6 billion KARACHI STAFF REPORT
Banks have disbursed Rs972.6 billion for the fiscal year 2017-18. The current year’s disbursement is 38.1 per cent higher than the last year’s disbursements of Rs704.5 billion. Further, the agri outstanding portfolio increased to Rs469.4 billion on end June 2018 registering a growth of 15.7 per cent compared with the last year’s position of Rs405.8 billion. Similarly, the agricultural credit outreach has increased to 3.72 million farmers at end June 2018 from 3.27 million farmers last year recording growth of 13.8 per cent. The achievement of agri credit disbursement was a challenging task in the backdrop of various real side challenges like; water shortage, low production of maize and wheat, price volatility of agri produce and a high cost of production. However, the State Bank of Pakistan (SBP) made concerted efforts for achieving the agri credit disbursement target and implementing various budgetary initiatives set by the government. These efforts included; provision of enabling the regulatory environment for agri lending institutions, sensitising banks to adopt agri financing as a viable business proposition, exploring new avenues of financing; value chain financing, digitalization of credit, warehouse receipt financing and implementation of credit guarantee scheme for small and marginalized farmers etc.
NEPRA imposes Rs5m fine on GENCO-II ISLAMABAD
Friday, August 10, 2018
SAudI bANk REAdy tO bAIl Out PtI GOvt wIth $4bN lOAN
Saudi-backed Islamic Development Bank (IDB) is poised to lend Pakistan more than $4 billion to revive the nuclear nation's depleting foreign currency reserves, the Financial Times reported on Thursday. According to the report, the Islamic Development Bank (IDB) based in Jeddah has agreed to make a formal offer to lend Islamabad the money when Imran Khan takes over as prime minister. “The paperwork is all in place,” said one senior adviser in Islamabad. “The IDB is waiting for the elected government to take charge before giving their approval.” The official added that the loan would not cover Pakistan’s expected financing gap of at least $25bn during this financial year but was “an important contribution”. Imran Khan is expected to take over as prime minister in the coming days after his Pakistan Tehreek-eInsaf won the most seats in last month’s election — though it fell short of an outright majority. One of his first jobs will be to repair the country’s balance of payments problem, with high imports and stagnant exports having bled the country of much of its foreign exchange reserves. Speaking to reporters in Islam-
RepoRt says IDB wIll make foRmal offeR when ImRan khan takes oath as pm
abad this week, Asad Umar, who served as the PTI’s shadow finance minister while in opposition, warned: “The situation is dire. We’ve got $10bn dollars of central bank reserves, we’ve got somewhere between $8bn and $9bn in shortterm liabilities, and therefore your net reserves are close to nothing.”
Officials have already drawn up plans to borrow up to $12bn from the International Monetary Fund (IMF) — through such a bailout is likely to come with strings attached, such as a demand to see the details behind billions of dollars’ worth of Chinese loans. Umar is, therefore, exploring
what other options remain open to him, of which the IDB loan is one. Officials said the loan would be used mainly to pay for oil imports, with higher crude prices have contributed to Pakistan’s problems. An official at the State Bank of Pakistan, who has been involved in negotiations with the IDB, said the loan had the backing of the Saudi government, “which wants to play a part in rescuing Pakistan from its present crisis”. Islamabad and Riyadh have moved closer in recent months after Pakistan agreed to send an undeclared number of troops to “train and advise” security forces there. The Pakistan government insists that the soldiers will not be used to fight in Yemen however, something the Saudis had previously requested. Despite the promise of money from the IDB, economists warn that Khan’s new government will still have to enact potentially unpopular spending cuts and tax rises to help repair the government’s balance sheet. “The budget deficit shot up to about 7 per cent of a gross domestic product during the last financial year,” said Waqar Masood Khan, a former finance ministry official. “Bringing that down to the target of 4 per cent is not going to be easy.” NEWS DESK
Digital banking, e-commerce witness unprecedented growth: sBp report LAHORE
NEPRA has imposed a fine of Rs5 million on M/s Central Power Generation Company Limited GENCO-II, a government-owned power generation company. The fine has been imposed on account of negligence in the maintenance of 220 kV switchyard of TPS Guddu old and non-operation of 220 kV circuit breaker which resulted in a power breakdown on January 21, 2016, in the northern network of the country i.e. Punjab and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa. The Authority (NEPRA) took a serious note of the power break down and initiated legal proceedings against GENCO-II and directed NTDC to investigate the matter and submit a report.
Although Pakistan’s banking system is known to be riddled with draconian procedures which force customers to sign a multitude of forms, undergo lengthy procedures to make simple transactions, and wait weeks to receive a debit or credit card – recent manifestations propelled by the digital payments industry has resulted in the banking industry changing its paper-based processes to digital. The State Bank of Pakistan (SBP) in its ‘Payment Systems Review’ for the financial year 2017-2018 has provided a statistical snapshot of the payment systems in the country, showing growth in various traditional and modern payment systems. During the financial year 2018, the country’s core payment systems infrastructure remained operationally re-
silient. All the channels of payment systems showed significant growth compared to the previous year. The large-value payment system i.e. Pakistan Real Time Interbank Settlement Mechanism (PRISM) processed 1.7 million transactions amounting Rs361 trillion. These transactions showed significant growth of 54.5 per cent and 29.2 per cent in both volume and value of transactions compared to the previous financial year. In these transactions, the transactions with regards to third party customers’ transfers has the highest share of 1.3 million transactions (i.e. 79 per cent of the overall recorded transactions) whereas Government securities settlement transactions have the highest share of Rs256 trillion in value of transactions. There were 1,094 locally registered e-Commerce Merchants having their merchant accounts in 8 banks as of end of June, 2018 showing limited boarding
of e-Commerce merchants in the country. Consumers carried out 3.4 million online transactions of worth Rs18.7 billion on these locally registered e-Commerce Merchants during the year FY18. These transactions showed a significant YoY growth of 183.3 per cent and 98.9 per cent compared to previous year. In addition to the above, domestically issued Debit, Credit and Pre-paid cards processed 6.8 million transactions of Rs. 39.7 billion on local and International eCommerce merchants. In these e-Commerce transaction Credit Cards has the highest share both in volume and value of transactions. While no specific information has been provided on the number of users of these cards, the number of transactions processed through these cards has increased by 37.3 per cent with total transactions, as on June 2018, having been reported at 34.4 million, at a value of
Rs201.5 billion during the fiscal year 2018. Having grown at a pace of 21.8 per cent and 23.4 per cent in the volume and value of transactions respectively, during the year under review, debit cards processed a total of 441.1 million transactions worth Rs5.1 trillion, far greater than the size and value of transactions conducted using credit cards. However, the bulk of this usage has been on transactions concerning ATM withdrawals whereas the share of transactions with respect to Point of Sale usage has been merely 8.6 per cent in volume and 2.9 per cent in the value of transactions. Credit cards, on the other hand has been the predominant medium for Point of Sale usage, with the 87.2 per cent of the total volume of credit card transactions being made on Point of Sale payments and 10.2 per cent in eCommerce transactions.
senate body dismayed over tobacco revenue loss due to fBR’s ineﬃciency ISLAMABAD APP
The Special Committee of the Senate on Cause of Decline in Tax Collection of Tobacco Thursday expressed dismay over the prima facie inefficiency of the Federal Board of Revenue (FBR), resulting in revenue loss of billions of rupees to the national exchequer following revision in tax structure for the tobacco industry. The committee which met here under chairpersonship of Senator Kalsoom Parveen, observed that after the unveiling of the three-tier based Federal Excise Duty (FEDF) structure in May 2017, the tobacco industry players shifted their famous brands to the lowest duty slab, which drastically reduced federal excise duty by Rs31 billion while contrary to it, their tobacco sales were increased. The 3-tier based FED structure was introduced with almost 50 percent cut in the FED rate. The Chairperson criticized the FBR
Tobacco worth $26.073m exported in FY 2017-18 ISLAMABAD: About 7,211 metric tons of tobacco worth $26.073 million exported during 12 months of the fiscal year 2017-18 as compared the exports of the corresponding period of last year. The exports of the above-mentioned commodity during the period under review witnessed 76.1 per cent growth as against the same period of last year, said data of Pakistan Bureau of Statistics (PBS). The exports of tobacco were recorded at 3,802 metric tons worth $14.813 million in the financial year 2016-17, the data revealed. Meanwhile, about 1,469,802 metric tons of sugar worth $508.333 million exported as compared the exports of 307,348 metric tons valuing $161.039 million, showing over 200 per cent increase. Besides, the country exported 1.189 million metric tons of wheat worth $236.339 million during 12 months of last fiscal year as compared the exports of 3,937 metric tons valuing $1.038 million of the corresponding period last year. APP
for its failure to check this revenue loss and said that at a time when Pakistan was in dire need of finances, losing a potential taxes of around Rs31 billion, which was very unfortunate The committee asked the FBR to
come up with details during next meeting of all those factory owners who were making unbranded cigarettes and action taken against them. The committee was of the view that it was not a difficult job to check these tax
gaps and collect potential tax from tobacco companies by putting in place different filters to detect leakages in taxation. The committee members blamed that this tax evasion was not possible without the support of some FBR officials for personal gains. On the occasion, the representatives of FBR, led by its Chairperson Rukhsana Yasmin, informed the committee that the loss was incurred due to flooding of market by non-paying illegitimate cigarette brands available at very cheaper rates. They were of the view that availability of non-paying brands affected the competitiveness of the duty-paying brands, which reduced their sales and resultantly decreased the federal excise duty and production. They were of the view that the production of cigarettes had declined from 56 billion sticks to 30 billion sticks due to this phenomenon. They informed the committee that some of these brands were being man-
ufactured in Azad Jammu and Kashmir and some areas of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, however assured the committee that the FBR would be providing details in next meeting. They also informed the committee that it was not possible for them to check such practices in Azad Jammu and Kashmir due to jurisdiction limit however they could set up check posts to check such brands crossing into Pakistan. The FBR representatives said that imposition of 5 per cent advance tax on purchase of tobacco was meant to detect tax evasion. On the occasion Pakistan Tax Board (PTB) informed the committee that other than CESS it had collected about Rs461.4 million advance taxes at the rate of 5 per cent on purchase value of tobacco. Auditor General of Pakistan informed the committee that after introducing the third tier of taxes, the sales of Tobacco Companies has risen over 31.64 per cent while the tax collection inched up only 4 per cent.
Friday, August 10, 2018
dR ShAmShAd AkhtAR lIkEly tO bE POStEd PlANNING COmmISSION dEPuty ChAIRmAN IN NExt GOvt ISLAMABAD
NBP launches tree plantation drive across Pakistan ISLAMABAD: The National Bank of Pakistan (NBP) formally launches its “Green Initiative” tree plantation campaign. NBP President Saeed Ahmad planted the sapling at the NBP’s north region head-office in Islamabad. NBP’s tree plantation campaign, “Green Initiative” is part of bank’s CSR program through which over 3,000 plants will be planted in Islamabad, Peshawar and Karachi. The NBP will gift over 1,000 plants to the Capital Development Authority (CDA) for its tree plantation drive in the capital. PRESS RELEASE
Chinese delegation visits PARC ISLAMABAD: A Chinese Delegation has visited Pakistan Agricultural Research Council (PARC), Head Quarters, Islamabad and held meeting with PARC T I Chairman Dr Yusuf Zafar for PakChina Collaboration in the agriculture sector. On the occasion, The Chairman acknowledged the support of China in various projects of PARC. In a meeting with Chinese Delegation, he gave a detailed presentation about PARC, its mission and vision to achieve sustainable food security and poverty alleviation through knowledge and innovation. PRESS RELEASE
Haier Qingdao makes it to Fortune 500 global list Haier continues to climb the ladder of success and global recognition. After being pronounced the world leader in home appliances for the 9 consecutive year in 2017 by Euromonitor, Haier Qingdao, a Haier Group company has now made it into the Fortune 500 Global List of the world’s largest companies. PRESS RELEASE
Supreme Court provides impetus to Diamer Basha, Mohmand Dams A comprehensive set of recommendations devised by Implementation Committee for Diamer Basha and Mohmand Dams (ICDBMD) was placed before the Honourable Supreme Court for early commencement and timely completion of Diamer Basha and Mohmand Dams. The Honourable bench endorsed the recommendations of the Committee which will provide much needed impetus to the long awaited commencement and completion of both Diamer Basha and Mohmand Dams. PRESS RELEASE
pak-Qatar family takaful inaugurates new branch KArAchI: Pak-Qatar Takaful Limited (PQTL) inaugurated its Saddar Branch in Rawalpindi. The PQTL branch was inaugurated by the Pak-Qatar Takaful Deputy CEO Muhammad Menhas along with senior regional team. Muhammad Menhas said that he is very pleased to inaugurate the new branch and appreciated the regional team’s commitment and dedication to the long term promotion of Takaful across Pakistan. PRESS RELEASE
ARETAKER Finance Minister Dr Shamshad Akhtar, who is going to hand over the economic affairs to the next expected minister Asad Umar, is likely to get the post of Deputy Chairman Planning Commission in the next government. According to reliable sources, the caretaker finance minister, a renowned Pakistani development economist, is on top of the list among names being considered by an economic team of Pakistan Tehrik-e-Insaf (PTI), which is going to take charge of the government by the end of next week. “Though PTI’s nominated finance minister Asad Umar is yet to take the charge of the ministry, the caretaker minister has started sharing dossiers with Umar. Dr Shamshad’s name in under consideration for Planning Commission,” the sources informed Pakistan Today. “Though her name was also under consideration for Governor State Bank of Pakistan (SBP) she is reportedly not interested in the post which she previously held for over four years (from 2005 to 2009). She, however, is interested in heading the planning commission where she has also served in the past,” they said. The chairman of the commission happens to be prime minister. The post of deputy chairman planning
commission is vacant since Sartaj Aziz submitted his resignation soon after completion of PML-N government’s term in May. He resignation was accepted by the competent authority on June 1, 2018. Aziz, being a political appointee, had stopped attending office after the PML-N government completed its fiveyear tenure on May 31. During his ten-month short-term, he tried to improve the working of the Planning Commission. Aziz had been given the status of a federal minister. The caretaker government had given the additional charge of deputy chairman planning commission to Dr Shamshad later. Dr Shamshad, though initially avoided criticizing the financial policies of the previous government, but she recently declared macroeconomic targets for 2018-19 presented by the PML-N regime as unrealistic. She said that the twin deficits – current account and budget deficit– had increased and now the country was facing macroeconomic challenges. Dr Shamshad had briefed the nominated next finance minister Asad Umar about economic issues of the country, during a recent meeting. Talking to media after the meeting, Asad Umar, however, did not disclose the details of his interaction with Dr Shamshad. He, however, described Pakistan’s external sector’s performance “far worse than five years ago” but still manageable. The caretaker finance minister has report-
experts urge banks to collaborate with fintechs to provide better digital services KARACHI STAFF REPORT
Speakers at an e-banking conference have ruled out the impression that financial technology firms would eat up conventional banks and asked them to collaborate with each other to better deliver banking services in Pakistan. Diebold Nixdorf MEA Managing Director Habib Hanna said developments suggest conventional banks are not closing their branches as has been impressed widely, but they are reshaping themselves to adjust in the growing digital world. "They are not closing physical branches, but transforming from physical banking to digital banking," he said this while speaking at the 16th international ebanking conference organised by Total Communications in collaboration with 1Link here on Thursday. They are not only the conventional banks which are transforming to digital, but the digital banks have also opened up 'physical branches' to do better banking worldwide, Hanna said. "PayPal (a leading global payment system) has acquired TIO Networks to increase its physical reach to the customers….ANT Financial (China's leading online payment system which has entered into Pakistan as well) has tried to acquire MoneyGram for $1 billion to strengthen its physical reach," he said. Mastercard Sales Excellence and
Business Transformation VP MEA Tamer Kashef said Pakistan is currently standing at that point of the journey in the e-banking industry where Russia was standing about a decade ago. However, they have revolutionised the Russian market with continuous innovation and playing its due role in Pakistan as well to transform it as well. Less than 5 per cent banking customers were using e-banking services in Russia sometime around 2005. Now, close to 45 per cent have upgraded to the latest banking solution, he said. 1Link CEO Najeeb Agrawalla said millennial are assumed as the future customers of Pakistan's banking industry. However, millennials are missing from the broader banking horizon, as they continued to spend most of their time on chats, entertainment, social networking. He urged digital bankers to design and offer products to cater youngsters need who do not like to visit physical branches. Experts developed a consensus that ebanking – and more specifically the mobile banking – holds the key towards strong growth in the banking industry. The country has developed DNA for digital banking with around one-fourth of the total population is using the advanced 3G/4G mobile internet while around 70 per cent portion of the 208 million peoples' population is comprising of youngsters and millennial of the age between 18-35 years who are the potential future customers.
edly informed Umar about the steps she had taken to ‘contain’ expenditures and correct macroeconomic imbalances. According to insiders at the ministry, the caretaker minister during the past two months has largely been busy in handling how to make ground for next program of IMF for which the repayment arrangements of previous loans were needed to be streamlined. During the past few months IMF was engaged with Pakistan, including through the Post-Programme Monitoring (PPM) and the regular Article IV consultations. The last PPM report was discussed by the IMF Executive Board in March 2018. The dates for the next Article IV consultation were yet to be decided. The caretaker finance minister, who has good links in international financial institutions, is being considered a good member of PTI’s next government economic team. According to sources, various economists, bankers have also started lobbying for the post of SBP Governor as the next government will remove the existing governor. It may recall here that Shamshad Akhtar, a Pakistani development economist, diplomat and intellectual, has served as the 14th Governor of SBP, the first woman to assume this position. She also served as a senior adviser to Secretary-General of the United Nations Ban Ki-moon and the VicePresident of the World Bank.
SECP holds workshop on insurance tech ISLAMABAD STAFF REPORT
The Securities and Exchange Commission of Pakistan (SECP) has organised a workshop on Insurtech (Insurance Technology) for Inclusive Insurance: Opportunities and Challenges for Developing Countries in Islamabad. Considering the evolving role of technology in the distribution, administration and servicing of insurance globally, and the opportunities inherent therein, it becomes imperative to discuss and explore the evolving area of insurtech and underlying issues and opportunities therein at the domestic level. The SECP Commissioner (Insurance) expressed his resolve to extend his all-out support for the development of insurance industry and the continuation of such knowledge-sharing events. Participants from diverse backgrounds, including insurance companies, insurance broker, web aggregator companies, banks providing digital banking services, the microfinance institutions’ network, and non-banking financial companies attended the workshop. Various issues were highlighted and deliberated upon at length such as data privacy, data confidentiality, cybersecurity, client experience and engagement, client value risk etc. It was discussed as to how the inherent features of insurtech, i.e. cost efficiency, speed, convenience, accessibility, transparency, and engagement, which make it especially relevant and feasible for the low-income segment, can be leveraged for tapping the unserved and underserved segment of the society, i.e. low-income segment.
Market Daily: KSE-100 gains 192 points to 42,924 LAHORE STAFF REPORT
The Pakistan Stock Exchange (PSX) witnessed another confused session as the indices were seen oscillating in both directions and the day ended in Green. As the country’s political situation appears to be on snooze post general elections, the market continued to trade range bound. Foreign investors ended Wednesday with a net outflow of $16.56 million taking the total net sell value for the week (first three sessions) to $23.01 million against previous week’s net sell of $14.62 million. They have sold a net amount of $261.44 million in the past one year. The KSE 100 touched intraday low of 42,696.35 minutes after the session started. The index managed to gain 192.09
points and ended at 42,923.95. The KMI 30 index gathered 610.31 points and settled at 73,910.98. The KSE All Share index inched up by 34.13 points. The advancers to decliners ratio stood at 220 to 140. An inflation of 8 per cent in the market volume was seen from the last session and was recorded at 206.17 million on Thursday. Pak Elektron Limited (PAEL +2.63 per cent) led the volume table with 12.24 million shares exchanged. Lotte Chemical Pakistan Limited (LOTCHEM +0.64 per cent) and The Bank of Punjab (BOP +0.69 per cent) followed with 9.05 million and 8.83 million shares traded. The cement sector managed to gain 2.56 per cent in its cumulative market capitalization. Maple Leaf Cement Factory Limited (MLCF +4.99 per cent) touched its upperlock. Lucky Cement Limited (LUCK) and D.
G. Khan Cement Company Limited (DGKC) appreciated by 2.58 per cent and 2.95 per cent respectively. While Fauji Cement Company Limited (FCCL +3.40 per cent) also ended the day positive. The Commercial Bank sector declined by a minor 0.03 per cent. United Bank Limited (UBL -1.31 per cent), Bank AL Habib Limited (BAHL -1.03 per cent) and Meezan Bank Limited (MEBL -0.69 per cent) all ended in red. Allied Bank Limited (ABL +1.46 per cent) announced its financial results for the second quarter ended 30th June, 2018. The company declared Rs 2.00 interim cash dividend per share. The company’s revenue was up by 6 per cent YoY. While the earning per share increased from Rs 2.51 in the last year to Rs 2.95 in current year (an increase of 18 per cent from last year).
Friday, 10 August, 2018
Sharapova StorMS paSt KaSatKIna at Wta aS naDal leaDS In toronto MaSterS MonTreaL
ARIA Sharapova fired 25 winners past hapless Russian compatriot Daria Kasatkina in a 6-0, 6-2 victory at the rain-hit Montreal WTA event on Wednesday, but Angelique Kerber's first match since capturing the Wimbledon title ended in a sobering defeat. Sharapova needed just 66 minutes to see off 12th-seeded Kasatkina in an impressive and timely display of big-hitting, with the US Open getting underway in just under three weeks' time. "I came on court having a lot of respect for my opponent because she's up and coming but has already established herself," said the 31-year-old Sharapova. "I knew I had a tough match ahead of me. I was focused from the beginning and I finished it that way."
Kasatkina, 21, managed just three winners in the match. Play was suspended before the start of Wednesday's night matches because of rain, resulting in four contests being added to Thursday's schedule. The action will resume at 11:00 am local time
Djokovic backs Davis Cup reforms ToronTo
(1500 GMT). World number one Simona Halep will now play Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova in the second match on court central followed by second seeded Caroline Wozniacki in her second-round match against Aryna Sabalenka of Belarus.
Venus Williams also had her second match of the tournament moved to Thursday. She beat world number 124 Caroline Dolehide in the first round but will have a tougher test against veteran Sorana Cirstea of Romania. Sharapova next faces French sixth seed Caroline Garcia for a place in the quarter-finals. Five-time major winner Sharapova leads the head-to-head against Garcia 4-1 but the French player won their only meeting in the last three years on clay in Stuttgart in April. World number four Kerber, playing for the first time since defeating Serena Williams in last month's Wimbledon final, slumped to a 6-4, 6-1 loss to Alize Cornet of France. German left-hander Kerber committed 32 unforced errors against the 34th-ranked Cornet in her 85-minute second round exit. Nadal leads way into Toronto third round
Top seed Rafael Nadal blew past patchy Frenchman Benoit Paire 6-2, 6-3 on Wednesday to begin his quest for a fourth Canadian trophy at the Toronto Masters. The world number one Spaniard was untouchable as he schooled Paire for the fourth time without a loss, taking 74 minutes as he broke six times. Nadal won the event in 2005, 2008 and 2013. "I was not at my 100 per cent today," Nadal said. "It's true that I did good work here the last five days, but at the same time it's true that I didn't work very hard at home. "So, the first match is an important victory for me, for my confidence. It's important that I have another match tomorrow too. So just try to keep going. "I played a solid match, in the second set I had some troubles, but my return worked well. It was more about the mistakes from the baseline." The 32-year-old will bid for
the quarter-finals here for the first time since 2015 when he plays Stan Wawrinka, who staged another fightback in three sets, beating Marton Fucsovics 1-6, 7-6 (7/2), 7-6 (12/10). Defending champion Alexander Zverev, seeded second and winner at the weekend in Washington, also advanced easily beating Bradley Klahn 6-4, 6-4. Former top-ranked Novak Djokovic, a four-time champion, sent Canadian Peter Polansky to a 6-3, 6-4 defeat. Two generations of local players split the difference with Milos Raonic, 27, heading out while teenaged gun Denis Shapovalov moved on. American Frances Tiafoe beat Raonic 7-6 (7/4), 4-6, 6-1 in a match hit by a weather interruption of more than two and a half hours. Teenaged prodigy Shapovalov eliminated Italian 14th seed Fabio Fognini winner last weekend in Los Cabos, 6-3, 7-5. Djokovic expressed support for the new 25-second shot clock innovation designed to cut down on time wasting between points. "I'm pretty comfortable with it -- it's good to have shot clock in the tournaments prior to the US Open."
China's Peng banned and fined for Wimbledon corruption attempt
Reigning Wimbledon champion Novak Djokovic says he is in favour of a bid to turn the Davis Cup tournament into a season-ending Grand Slam-level showdown, as it would ease scheduling woes for the players. Currently, the Davis Cup is structured around a 16-nation World Group, contested over four weekends during the year. The remaining countries are then divided into three regional zones. The International Tennis Federation's controversial revamp would see the Davis Cup morph into a World Cup of Tennis final featuring 18 countries -- and address complaints that the heavy time commitment drives away the top players. The proposal must win approval at the federation's annual general meeting in Orlando, Florida later this month. Djokovic, a Davis Cup champion for Serbia in 2010, gave his thumbs up. "I think that format needs to be changed. And I'm all in favour of that," Djokovic said after beating Peter Polansky, 6-4, 6-3 to reach the third round of the ATP Toronto Masters on Wednesday. "You play one year, and then the next year you don't play. It's just the scheduling of this kind of format so far has been pretty bad." The ITF has said the revamp would bring benefits across the tennis world in the form in increased prize money and more top players taking part. It would also raise the hosting standards of the Davis Cup to a Grand Slam level, ITF chief David Haggerty told AFP. Madrid and Lille are "the two leading cities" to host the first edition of the revamped Davis Cup in November 2019, Haggerty said.
China's former world number one doubles star Peng Shuai was banned for six months and fined $10,000 on Wednesday for attempting to force her doubles partner to withdraw from Wimbledon in 2017, the Tennis Integrity Unit announced. "Peng Shuai was found to have used coercion and offered the possibility of financial reward in return for her main draw partner agreeing to withdraw from the ladies doubles event at Wimbledon 2017," the TIU said in a statement. "Although the offer was refused and Peng Shuai did not subsequently compete at The Championships, it constituted a breach of the Tennis Anti-Corruption Program (TACP)." Peng's attempt to change her doubles partner came after the sign-in deadline. Peng, 32, was banned for six months, with three suspended, and fined $10,000, with $5,000 suspended, on condition that she commits no further breaches of the anti-corruption code. She will be eligible to play again on November 8 this year. The Chinese star is currently ranked 20 in doubles and 80 in
‘I wouldn’t be happy either’: Scholes writes off joyless Man Utd London Agencies
singles. However, she was the number one ranked doubles player in February 2014 and reached a career-best singles ranking of 14 in August 2011. Peng has won two WTA singles titles in her career as well as two Grand Slam women's doubles crowns at Wimbledon in 2013 and Roland Garros in 2014, both alongside Taiwan's Hsieh Su-wei.
She hasn't played since Wimbledon last month where she was knocked out in the first round of the singles before a second-round exit in the doubles where she teamed up with Latisha Chan of Taiwan. The TIU added that Peng's former coach Bertrand Perret of France has also been banned for three months for his role in the same affair.
Mourinho frustrated as Premier League clubs race to beat new deadline London Agencies
Manchester United manager Jose Mourinho does not expect to add to his squad as the Premier League transfer window closes on Thursday, despite warning a difficult season lies ahead for the English giants without further recruits. For the first time the Premier League deadline has been moved forward to the day before the season kicks off when United host Leicester City on Friday. Unlike in England, the window for the rest of Europe's leading leagues doesn't close until later in August, meaning Premier League clubs have faced even more inflated prices when buying from the continent. Chelsea shattered the world record fee for a goalkeeper with an 80-
million-euro (£71.6 million, $92 million) swoop for Athletic Bilbao's Kepa Arrizabalaga on Wednesday to replace Belgian international Thibaut Courtois, who has joined European champions Real Madrid. As part of that deal, Croatia midfielder Mateo Kovacic has also joined Chelsea on a season-long loan deal. However, there has been little other late movement from the top six clubs with Mourinho in particular frustrated at missing out on a host of targets to bolster his options in central defence.
Harry Maguire, who could face United for Leicester on Friday, Bayern Munich's Jerome Boateng and Toby Alderweireld of Tottenham were all linked with United, while Atletico Madrid's Diego Godin emerged as a late target on Thursday. But Mourinho now says he is focusing on the players already at his disposal. "The information I have is no," said Mourinho when asked if he would be adding to his squad. "I’m not confident, I'm not confident and the market closes today so it is time at least for me to stop thinking
about the market because the market will be closed." Mourinho has been further irked by seeing rivals Liverpool steal a march on United to emerge as the second favourites for the title behind Manchester City thanks to a more than £170 million splurge on new signings. However, Liverpool did their business early and are not expected to be busy on deadline day after recruiting Brazilian international Alisson Becker for a short-lived world record 72.5-million-euro fee for a goalkeeper and midfielders Fabinho, Naby Keita and Xherdan Shaqiri. Despite slashing a club record £60 million on signing Riyad Mahrez, City have enjoyed a uieter window after spending over £200 million last summer on assembling a squad that smashed a host of Premier League records in romping towards the title.
Manchester United legend Paul Scholes said the team look unhappy and have little chance of winning this season’s Premier League, warning that Jose Mourinho needs to quickly turn their fortunes around. Scholes said “I wouldn´t be happy either” playing Mourinho´s pragmatic brand of football, in comments that threaten to reignite his feud with the Portuguese manager. The former England midfielder pointed to a gulf in class — and playing styles — with Pep Guardiola´s freeflowing Manchester City, who won the title 19 points ahead of their neighbours last season. United begin their campaign against Leicester City on Friday, after a downbeat pre-season when they lost 4-1 to Liverpool and Mourinho voiced his frustration over a lack of new signings. “It doesn´t really look like the players enjoy… playing the way they do,” Scholes told AFP in Hong Kong, where he was promoting 433 Token, a blockchainbased system aimed at nurturing young talent. “If I was there playing… in that style of play, I wouldn´t be happy either,” said Scholes, who won 11 titles and two European cups at United under Alex Ferguson. “As a manager, you want your team to entertain… That very very rarely happens at United these days.” The latest salvo from the TV analyst follows a highly publicised run-in with Mourinho last season when the Portuguese thundered: “If Paul one day decides to be a manager, I wish that he can be 25 per cent as successful as myself.”
Stokes 'could have killed me': cleared defendant London Agencies
Ryan Hale, a former soldier allegedly knocked out by Ben Stokes, said the England cricketer "could have killed me", their trial heard Thursday, as the ex-serviceman was formally cleared of affray. Stokes, Hale and a third man, Ryan Ali, were in Bristol Crown Court on Thursday for the fourth day of their trial for alleged affray in the southwest English city on September 25 last year. After the prosecution concluded its case against the three men, judge Peter Blair told the jury to find Hale not guilty. "I am directing you to find him not guilty in my analysis of the evidence," Blair said. Hale, 28, was formally found not guilty and invited to leave the dock.
Friday, 10 August, 2018
paKIStan are favoUrIteS for CrICKet WorlD CUp 2019: YoUSUf Lahore
AKISTAN great Mohammad Yousuf has named his former side as favourites to win the ICC Cricket World Cup 2019, reported ICC. Yousuf, who played at three World Cups for his country – including the last time it was held in England and Wales in 1999 – sees Pakistan as genuine challengers next year. The former Pakistan captain believes the ICC Champions Trophy 2017 winners have the best bowling attack to deal with conditions in England and Wales. “I think Pakistan are the favourites,” he told Pak Passion. “I say that because I feel they have the best bowling attack, particularly on flat tracks. “When I say best, I mean they have the best-balanced attack. An attack which can take wickets regularly and not let the opposition settle. “Another key factor is that Pak-
istan will not be relying on part-time bowlers, they have six or seven genuine bowlers in the team and that is something that not many of the teams participating at the World Cup will have at their disposal. “On the sort of flat tracks that will be available in England at that
time, the team with the best bowling attack will succeed. I believe that bowling attack belongs to Pakistan.” While India have three batsmen in the top ten of the MRF Tyres ICC Men’s ODI Batting Rankings– Virat Kohli, Rohit Sharma and Shikhar Dhawan – Yousuf fears their bowl-
ing attack may prove to be their downfall at the World Cup. “The last two Champions Trophy tournaments have been won by India and Pakistan respectively and I believe that both of these teams have the ability to win the World Cup. “India has a wonderful array of batting talent, but I think there are some doubts over their bowlers, particularly their pace bowlers as was evident in the recent one-day series against England.” Given their status as the No. 1 side in the MRF Tyres ICC Men’s ODI Teams Rankings, it’s no surprise Yousuf also sees England as a major threat. “Coming to the hosts, I feel that England will have home advantage and they are looking formidable at the moment in one-day cricket, and they will be a force at the World Cup,” he added. “The only other team that may stand an outside chance is Australia but they really need to get all of their main players back from bans, from injuries and then firing on all cylinders.”
pCB prepares to launch its own tv channel Lahore stAff RepoRt
The Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) is gearing up to launch its own television channel which will broadcast live cricket matches and talk shows featuring in-depth analysis, a report published in local news channel’s website said. The report quoted PCB Chairperson Najam Sethi as saying that the board has already applied for the upcoming channel’s license through Pakistan Electronic Media Regulatory Authority (PCB). PCB will be the first board among all Test-playing nations to have its own TV channel for cricket broadcasting, the report stressed.
Cummins, hazlewood out of pakistan test tour Sydney Agencies
Afridi withdraws from CPL 2018 to tend to knee problem Malinga snubbed for one-off t20I CoLoMbo Agencies
Lasith Malinga's heroics for the Montreal Tigers in the Global T20 League in Toronto haven't been enough to secure a first international call-up since September last year. The fast bowler was ignored as Sri Lanka announced a 15-man T20I squad for the one-off game against South Africa on August 14. Malinga, who still harbours hopes of playing for his country, was the third-highest wickettaker in Canada, and had the best average (11.84) and economy rate (6.41) among all bowlers in the tournament with more than five wickets. Left-arm fast bowler Binura Fernando could be in line to play his first match in over three years after being called up. The 23-year old played two T20Is in 2015 against Pakistan, but hasn't played any international cricket since. Dhananjaya de Silva has been called up to the T20I squad, having last played an international in that format in January 2017. A string of impressive performances against South Africa have been rewarded after the 26-year old has stood out as one of the best performers of the tour. Angelo Mathews returns to the T20I side having missed the home tri-series, that also included Bangladesh and India, because of injury. It ended in disappointment for Sri Lanka, after they were dramatically knocked out before the final at the hands of Bangladesh in the final over.
Australian fast bowlers Pat Cummins and Josh Hazlewood were on Thursday ruled out of the upcoming Test series against Pakistan in the United Arab Emirates as they continue to recover from injury. Both players missed the recent one-series against England as their struggle to get over lumbar bone stress issues. Neither has played since Australia’s scandal-plagued tour of South Africa earlier this year, which saw skipper Steve Smith and opener David Warner banned for a year over a balltampering incident. But Mitchell Starc, who also missed the England tour, is back training and on track for the first Test against Pakistan, scheduled for October. “Pat and Josh are progressing well from their lumbar bone stress injuries but are not bowling,” said team physiotherapist David Beakley. “So, unfortunately, they will not be at the level required for Test match intensity come October.” He said they aimed to be available for the one-day series against South Africa at home in November as they build towards the summer Indian Test series.
Sangakkara, SlC laud pallekele spectators' clean-up act post-match Kandy Agencies
Shahid Afridi has pulled out of the Caribbean Premier League 2018 in order to tend to a knee problem that first occurred during the Pakistan Super League, for which he will continue to undergo rehabilitation. Afridi made the announcement through a tweet, expressing his disappointment at missing out on the "biggest part in sport". After sustaining the injury while playing for Karachi Kings during
the PSL, Afridi turned out for Edmonton Royals in the Global T20 Canada league, besides captaining ICC World XI against West Indies in a T20 at Lord's in July. Afridi's only previous stint in the CPL was with St Kitts and Nevis Patriots in 2015, during the tournament's third season. The latest edition of CPL 2018 will commence on August 8, with the Trinbago Knight Riders taking on St Lucia Stars at Port of Spain. Jamaica Tallawahs, led by Andre Russel, will play their first match on August 10, against Knight Riders in the same venue.
Groups of spectators have helped collect rubbish discarded in the stadium following both Sri Lanka-South Africa ODIs at Pallekele - the same venue where play had to be stopped last year when spectators threw empty bottles onto the ground as India closed in on victory. A group of students from the island's South Eastern University is believed to have begun the cleaning initiative after the third ODI on Sunday. But the rubbish collection also happened following the fourth ODI on Wednesday, which had finished close to midnight due to repeated rain delays. The students' efforts have been noticed by Kumar Sangakkara, who is currently in England commentating on India's tour, with the former captain voicing his appreciation on Twitter. Sri Lanka Cricket has also released a short video praising the students. This is not the first-time spectators have helped clear rubbish at sports events. In June, Japan football fans were seen sweeping and clearing trash in a stadium in Saransk, Russia, following their team's World Cup victory over Colombia.
Mohammad Abbas, Sana Mir big winners on PCB awards night KaraChi Agencies
Mohammad Abbas, Hasan Ali and Babar Azam were among the big winners at the Pakistan Cricket Board’s annual awards night in Karachi on Wednesday. Abbas was named the Test Cricketer of the Year, while Hasan and Babar walked away with the corresponding honour in ODIs and T20Is. According to Cricinfo, Abbas had a phenomenal introduction to Test cricket in April 2017, and in the five Tests that Pakistan played over the last 12 months, the 28year old swing bowler has picked up 27 wickets in five Tests at an
average of 16.85. Hasan built upon his excellent start to international cricket over the past year, taking 26 wickets in 12 matches at an average of just 18, and an outstanding economy rate of 4.76. His best performance of 5 for 34 came in an ODI against Sri Lanka in Abu Dhabi, as part of a series whitewash inflicted upon the visitors. In addition, there were five other instances of the pacer snaffling three-wicket hauls in the last 12 months. Babar, 23, walked away with the highest T20I honour, for racking up 489 runs in just 12 innings, at an average of 54.33. He scored four half-centuries during this pe-
riod, including an unbeaten 97 against West Indies; Pakistan’s second-highest individual T20I score. Opener Fakhar Zaman, who recently become the fastest player to 1000 ODI runs and the first Pakistani to score a double-hundred in the format, was presented a “special award for Outstanding Performance”. Captain Sarfraz Ahmed, who did not miss a single match in the last one year, walked away with the Imtiaz Ahmed Spirit of Cricket Award. Among the women cricketers, Sana Mir was named the best ODI player and Javeria Khan was chosen as the best T20I player.
Friday, 10 August, 2018
ThREE dEad as IsRaEl and hamas TRadE hEavy fIRE GAZA CITY/JERUSALEM
ALESTINIAN militants in Gaza have fired more than 180 rockets and mortars into southern Israel and the Israeli military has launched 150 airstrikes as weeks of on-off violence came to a head, stymying hopes of a truce. Three Palestinians were killed, including a pregnant woman, a toddler and a Hamas fighter. Several Israelis were wounded, along with a 30-yearold Thai woman living in Israel. The Hamas-run ministry of health in Gaza named two of the dead as Enas Khammash, 23, who was pregnant, and her 18-month-old daughter, Bayan. It said 12 others were injured. The Israeli army said it had targeted “strategic military sites” including Hamas weapons manufacturing and training locations. The bloodshed on Thursday was the third severe flare-up in the past two months, during which the two sides have traded their most intense attacks since the 2014 war. There have been warnings of a possible fourth conflict in 10 years. A long-range Grad rocket fired from Gaza on Thursday afternoon struck outside Beersheba, the largest city in southern Israel with 200,000 residents, 25
miles (40km) from the Gaza Strip. Since late March, Palestinians have been protesting near the frontier, in part against an Israeli-imposed blockade that severely limits the movement of people and goods in and out of Gaza. The response to these mass gatherings at the perimeter fence has caused a global outcry, with snipers shooting dead more than 150 Palestinians, including children, medics and journalists. Thousands more have been wounded. Israel says the protest movement is being orchestrated by Hamas as a cover for attacks and points to shootings along the frontier that have killed one soldier. Palestinians have in the past few weeks begun to launch “flaming kites” into Israel, torching huge swathes of farmland. In Gaza overnight and into Thursday explosions could be seen as bombs landed. Hanan Qishawi, 32, said she and her three children were up all night in “constant terror”. “I do not remember experiencing such a terrifying night since the end of the 2014 war. When it was quiet, I fell asleep, and suddenly a big boom woke me up. I was waiting for daylight.” In the Israeli city of Sderot, explosions smashed up cars and motorbikes, dented pavements and pockmarked buildings with shrapnel. Sirens sounded , sending residents to bomb shelters.
ECP notifies Imran’s victory in four constituencies ISLAMABAD: The Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) Thursday issued the victory notifications of Pakistan Tehreek-eInsaf (PTI) Chairman Imran Khan from four National Assembly (NA) constituencies. The electoral watchdog declared Imran victorious from NA-35 Bannu, NA95 Mianwali, and NA-243 Karachi constituencies after accepting the PTI chief’s apology in poll code violation case. The ECP also notified Imran’s victory against Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) leader Saad Rafique from NA-131 constituency in Lahore after the Supreme Court suspended the Lahore High Court (LHC) verdict of vote recount. During the proceeding on Imran’s appeal against the LHC decision, Chief Justice of Pakistan (CJP) Mian Saqib Nisar ruled out recounting in the constituency. The commission is yet to issue the victory notification from the NA-53 constituency in Islamabad after it dismissed Imran’s reply in the ballot secrecy case. A four-member tribunal headed by Chief Election Commissioner (CEC) Sardar Muhammad Raza conducted a hearing of the case and announced the reserved verdict. Imran’s counsel Babar Awan appeared before the ECP on Thursday and submitted a written reply stating that his client did not intentionally stamp his ballot publicly. The reply also stated that the PTI chief’s photos were taken without his permission, adding that the curtain used around the ballot for secrecy had fallen due to the crowd inside the polling booth. The reply further sought an end to the case and requested the ECP to issue notification for Imran’s victory from NA-53 Islamabad. The ECP, however, dismissed the reply submitted by Awan and summoned an affidavit from Imran apologising for the controversial vote casting complete with his signature.The commission then adjourned the hearing till Friday. STAFF REPORT
Hamas’s armed wing, the Ezzedine al-Qassam Brigades, claimed responsibility for the rocket and mortar strikes. It said Palestinian “resistance” had fired projectiles at “enemy positions in the Gaza envelope”. Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu convened Israel’s security cabinet on Thursday and the Palestinian president, Mahmoud Abbas, called on world powers to “immediately and urgently intervene”. ADvertISeMeNt: The back and forth attacks began on Wednesday and continued late into Thursday. Palestinian officials said on condition of anonymity that militants in Gaza were prepared to halt the rocket fire, but intermittent exchanges continued. Nickolay Mladenov, the UN envoy for the Middle East conflict, called on all sides to “step back from the brink”. “Our collective efforts have pre-
KP governor summons inaugural session on 13th PESHAWAR STAFF REPORT
vented the situation from exploding until now. If the current escalation, however, is not contained immediately, the situation can rapidly deteriorate with devastating consequences for all people,” he said in a statement. ISrAeLI LeADer coNveNeS SecurIty cABINet: Israeli media are reporting that Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has convened his Security Cabinet to discuss the latest escalation of violence with Gaza militants. Ahead of Thursday evening's meeting, Netanyahu and his defense minister, Avigdor Lieberman, convened with top military officials at the army's headquarters in Tel Aviv. An Israeli official said Netanyahu had instructed the army to prepare for "every possibility." The official spoke on condition of anonymity because he was discussing a closed security meeting.
ECP drops charges against politicians in foul language case ELECTION WATCHDOG CLEARS CASES AGAINST IMRAN KHAN, PERVAIZ KHATTAK, AYAZ SADIQ AND FAZLUR REHMAN AFTER THEY SUBMITTED WRITTEN APOLOGIES ISLAMABAD STAFF REPORT
The Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) on Thursday dropped charges against Pakistan Tehreek-eInsaf (PTI) Chairman Imran Khan, Jamiat Ulema-e-Islam-Fazl (JUI-F) chief Fazlur Rehman, National Assembly Speaker Sardar Ayaz Sadiq and former Khyber Pakhtunkhwa chief minister Pervez Khattak for using foul language during their election campaigns. The verdicts were announced by
a four-member ECP bench headed by the chief election commissioner. The commission warned the politicians not to use inappropriate language in future. Earlier on Thursday, Ayaz Sadiq and Pervez Khattak had tendered their separate apologies to the ECP. An apology by Fazlur Rehman was already submitted to the ECP. The electoral body had issued notices to Sadiq, Fazl and Khattak in July, deploring the “abusive, insolent and derogatory” language used against other leaders that had been aired and
Balochistan-based RO alleges abduction of two POs on election night NEWS DESK
published by the electronic and print media. Moreover, it had been making rounds on social media as well. In addition to that, it was also pointed out that this was a clear violation of the code of conduct issued by ECP and asked the three political leaders to desist from using such language and summoned them to appear before it. Sadiq’s Lawyer Kamran Murtaza submitted an apology on behalf of the ex-NA speaker. Before the bench reserved its verdict on the matter, a clip was also played of both the PTI and PML-N leaders allegedly using derogatory language against their opponents. PTI Chairman Imran Khan was served a notice after he termed those going to welcome deposed prime minister Nawaz Sharif on his arrival from London “donkeys”. Khan had submitted an apology last month.
SC told Haqqani can’t be brought back on contempt charges ISLAMABAD: International law expert Ahmer Bilal Soofi informed the apex court on Thursday that former ambassador to the US Husain Haqqani could not be brought back to Pakistan on charges of contempt of court. A three-member bench headed by Chief Justice of Pakistan (CJP) Mian Saqib Nisar was hearing the case. Soofi apprised the court that the offence pertaining to an alleged misappropriation of the embassy fund could be pursued but the matter should be referred to the National Accountability Bureau (NAB) and Federal Investigation Agency (FIA) to bring Haqqani back through Mutual Legal Assistance (MLA). In view of this offence, Haqqani could be arrested in US under the international law. Justice Ijazul Ahsan remarked that the Foreign Of-
Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KP) Governor Zafar Iqbal Jhagra has summoned the Provincial Assembly to meet for the oath-taking ceremony on August 13, 2018 (Monday) at 10am. In the first-ever session of the new lawmakers-to-be chaired by outgoing Speaker Asad Qaisar, the newly elected MPAs will administer an oath of their offices. Later on, the speaker will announce a schedule for the election of new speaker and deputy speaker of the KP Assembly. So far, neither Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaaf (PTI) nor the opposition parties have announced names of their nominees for the offices of KP Assembly speaker and deputy speaker. The house, in the second phase of its session, will go for the election of the leader of the house – chief minister. The PTI, which got the majority number of seats during July 25 general elections, has nominated Mehmood Khan from Swat for the office of chief minister. However, no one from the opposition parties have announced any name of its nominee for the office of chief minister. The election of the speaker and deputy speaker will be held through secret ballot whereas the house will elect the leader of the house (chief minister) through the show of hand.
fice (FO) should take up the matter with US authorities to bring back Haqqani to the country. Soofi also recommended that FO should communicate SC’s displeasure regarding Haqqani to US authorities. On the other hand, Justice Umar Ata Bandial said the apex court is a judicial body working under the Constitution and it is imperative to take up the matter with US authorities. Soofi also submitted a draft of amendments in FIA rules which could enable the agency to execute the MLA process currently being exercised by NAB. Under that new power, any concerned agency can directly approach a foreign agency regarding any matter without involving FO. The bench has sought a report from the federal government as well as NAB regarding Soofi’s proposed draft. STAFF REPORT
A Balochistan-based returning officer (RO) offering his duty in PB-41 constituency in Washuk district in elections apprised the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) on Thursday that two presiding officers (PO) were allegedly kidnapped by masked men on the election day, which led to their polling stations’ results not being included in the final count. The issue was taken up by the ECP after the petition filed by the losing candidate, Balochistan Awami Party’s Mir Mujeebur Rehman Mohammad Hasani, drew its attention to the fact that the results of polling stations number 44 and 45 were missing from the final result of Balochistan Assembly constituency PB41, located in the Washuk district. The RO quoted the two presiding officers as claiming that they did not compile the results of their constituencies themselves and that “they were forced to submit the results compiled by their abductors.” “Who had abducted them?” asked an ECP official. At this, Kamran Murtaza, the counsel of PB-41 seat winner belonging to Mutthida Majlis-e-Amal (MMA), quoted the presiding officers as saying that they were “abducted by security forces”. The presiding officer of polling station 44 was then presented before the ECP. “Several masked men came and took me with them,” he said. “After several hours I was handed the Form 45.” Murtaza, however, reminded the ECP that a presiding officer of NA270, which was also located in the same region, had included the result of these polling stations in the final count and compiled the Form 45. The ECP adjourned the case and asked the NA270 RO as well as the winning candidate to appear at the next hearing, scheduled for August 28.
Pakistani-British grooming gang loses citizenship NewS DeSk: Three rapists from the Rochdale child grooming gang will be stripped of British citizenship after a top judge branded their predatory attacks “serious organised crime”. Three years ago Theresa May, then Home Secretary, decided that Abdul Aziz, 47, Adil Khan, 48, and Abdul Rauf, 48, should lose their British passports because of their crimes and the fact they are also citizens of Pakistan. Before their imprisonment, the trio worked as taxi drivers, with Rauf also acting as a Muslim preacher. They lost an appeal against the decision this Wednes-
day after being initially jailed at a trial in 2012. All had been found guilty of conspiracy to engage in sexual activity with children under the age of 16 and trafficking for sexual exploitation at trial. During the appeal, they argued their “human rights” would be violated if they were deported as they have children in the United Kingdom. However, senior judges at the Court of Appeal have now agreed with the Home Office that taking their citizenship away would be “conducive to the public good,” the Manchester Evening News reports. Lord Justice Sales said that “they were motivated
by lust and greed” and that Mrs May’s decision to have them deported was “reasonably open to her.” “The crimes were plainly very serious and there was a sufficient element of organisation in the way they were committed to justify characterising the offending as participation in serious organised crime,” he added. Gang ringleader Shabir Ahmed, 64, lost a separate appeal against deportation in the European Court of Human Rights (ECHR) in 2016, when he claimed his convictions were a police and “far right” conspiracy to “scapegoat” Muslims.
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The Rochdale gang to which they belonged was convicted of preying on vulnerable girls as young as 13 in the northern town, plying them with drink and drugs before they were “passed around” for sex. The gang was the subjects recent BBC drama Three Girls, which dramatized the grooming gang phenomenon which has blighted the entire country. The judge who jailed them at Liverpool Crown Court in May 2012 said their victims were “raped callously, viciously, and violently”. “All the men treated the girls as though they were worthless and beyond all respect”, he added.