Page 1


Friday, 11 October, 2019 I 11 Safar-ul-Muzaffar, 1441 I Rs 19.00 I Vol X No 101 I 16 Pages I Islamabad Edition

Once upOn a bhai g

uK chArgeS AltAF huSSAin with ‘SeriOuS’ terrOr OFFence Over 2016 hAte Speech; SAyS it hAS ‘encOurAging evidence’




uttahida Qaumi Movement (MQM) founder altaf hussain was on thursday charged with a terrorism offence in a case related to his incendiary speech relayed from the united Kingdom (uK) to his followers in Pakistan on august 22, 2016. the MQM founder was taken into police custody and was produced before the Westminster Magistrates’ Court. hussain appeared before Judge Emma arbuthnot wearing dark glasses and holding a paper, as the charge against him was read out. he pleaded not guilty. the Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) asked for hussain to be granted conditional bail. the conditions sought included a restriction on hussain not to broadcast any message, either video or audio, via social media, radio, tV, or internet to people in the uK or overseas concerning this case or comment on the political situation in Pakistan. hussain’s lawyer Kate Goold informed the judge that her client was “gravely unwell”. after he was informed of the bail conditions, hussain while addressing the judge said: “it is a daily routine to arrest my MQM workers […] thousands of my workers have been disappeared and killed and you are putting a condition; if people are killed how can i keep quiet?” Later in the day, hussain was granted condi-


MQM FOunder grAnted cOnditiOnAl bAil, Subjected tO night curFew beSideS Seizure OF pASSpOrt

tional bail. the judge imposed a night curfew on him, which means he cannot leave his premises at night without informing the police. he has also been restrained from making speeches to the media or using social media. the MQM founder can also not apply for travel permit and his passport would remain in custody. Night curfew as a condition is applied to serious offenders and those under investigation for serious offences. Electronic tagging is also done to ensure compliance. the next hearing of the case will be held at the central criminal court on November 1. hussain, who had earlier in the day appeared at a London police station after his bail expired, was charged by detectives from the Met Police’s Counter terrorism Command. “altaf hussain […], of abbey View, Mill hill, NW7, was charged under section 1(2) of the terrorism act (taCt) 2006 with encouraging terrorism,” the Met Police said in a statement on its website. the charge as stated by the uK police is that hussain “On 22 august 2016 published a speech to crowds gathered in Karachi, Pakistan which were likely to be understood by some or all of the members of the public to whom they were published as a direct or indirect encouragement to them to the commission, preparation or instigation of acts of terrorism and at the time he published them, intended them to be so encouraged, or was reckless as to whether they would be so encouraged.”

PML-N undecided over participation in Azadi March

the Met Police said: “hussain was previously arrested on 11 June on suspicion of intentionally encouraging or assisting offences contrary to Section 44 of the Serious Crime act 2007. he was released on bail and subsequently charged as above.” ‘VERY SERIOUS OFFENCE’: Commenting on the development, toby Cadman, a London-based lawyer who advises the Government of Pakistan on MQM-related cases, said the Met Police’s decision to charge hussain was a “testament to the cooperation between the united Kingdom and Pakistan. this is what happens when two states work together in such a serious case.” Speaking to reporters, he explained that the MQM founder was charged with “encouraging terrorism”, which is a “very serious offence”. he said hussain will be presented before a magistrate, who will make a decision about either remanding him in custody or bailing him to the central criminal court where he will stand trial. Cadman said hussain was charged after the Crown Prosecution Service advised the Met Police that there is sufficient evidence to charge him. Earlier on thursday, hussain had reached the Metropolitan Police Southwark Police Station, accompanied by a handful of London-based supporters. this was his third appearance at the station in connection with the case. On September 12, the MQM chief was grilled for five hours at the same police station in connection with the case. he was released with an extension in his bail. the MQM founder was arrested by the Met Police on June 11 as part of the investigation into his alleged hate speeches. however, he was released on bail a day later by the British authorities without filing charges relating to the probe. hussain had been arrested on suspicion of intentionally encouraging or assisting offences contrary to Section 44 (intentionally encouraging or assisting an offence) of the Serious Crime act, 2007. the investigation that led to his arrest in June was led by the Met’s counterterrorism command, a statement released at the time said. the Met said the inquiry was “focused on a speech broadcast in august 2016 by an individual associated with the MQM movement in Pakistan as well as other speeches previously broadcast by the same person”. Officers in June had searched two addresses linked to the MQM founder in north-west London. Police had also said that its officers had been liaising with authorities in Pakistan in relation to their ongoing inquiry.

Fazl to lead Azadi March from Sukkur on Oct 27: report


LHC larger bench to decide NAB chief’s fate STORY ON PAGE 02

Soldier martyred, 2 civilians injured in loc firing STORY ON PAGE 02

PM Imran’s visit to Saudi Arabia, Iran ‘on the cards’: FO STORY ON PAGE 02

Justice Isa ‘ostensible owner’ of UK properties, govt tells SC g


ecp rejects pti’s applications for secrecy in foreign funding case

Agp SAyS Sc judge’S FAMily MeMberS bOught prOpertieS At A tiMe when they hAd nO independent SOurce OF incOMe OF their Own STORY ON BACK PAGE

Friday, 11 October, 2019

02 ISLAMABAD Soldier martyred, two civilians injured in LoC firing RAWALPINDI: A Pakistan Army soldier, Naimat Wali, was martyred and two civilians were injured as the Indian army resorted to ceasefire violations along the restive Line of Control (LoC) on Thursday. According to a press release issued by the Inter-Services Public Relations (ISPR), Indian troops resorted to ceasefire violations in Baroh and Chirikot sector along the LoC, injuring two women in Serian village. In response, Pakistan Army troops targetted Indian army posts which were “substantially damaged”. ISPR added that there were reports of casualties of Indian troops. Two civilians had been injured in Azad Jammu and Kashmir (AJK) in a previous ceasefire violation by Indian troops from across the LoC on Wednesday. A day earlier, the Foreign Office (FO) had summoned Indian Deputy High Commissioner Gaurav Ahluwalia to record a strong protest against the “unprovoked ceasefire violations” by Indian forces along the LoC on Oct 6 and 7. A Pakistan Army soldier was martyred after Indian troops resorted to “unprovoked firing” in the Hajipir sector of AJK, ISPR said on Sept 14. The LoC violations come as tensions remain high between India and Pakistan over the former’s move to revoke occupied Kashmir’s special autonomy on August 5. Earlier on Wednesday, two civilians had been injured in Azad Jammu and Kashmir (AJK) in yet another ceasefire violation by the Indian army from across the LoC. A day earlier, the Foreign Office (FO) had summoned India’s Deputy High Commissioner to Pakistan Gaurav Ahluwalia to record a strong protest against the “unprovoked ceasefire violations” by Indian forces along the LoC on Oct 6 and 7. The LoC violations come as tensions remain high between India and Pakistan over the former’s move to revoke occupied Kashmir’s special autonomy on Aug 5. STAFF REPORT

Prolonging Kashmir dispute threatens regional peace: CJCSC RISALPUR: Chairman Joint Chiefs of Staff Committee (CJCSC) General Zubair Mahmood Hayat on Thursday said that India’s annexation of Kashmir is illegal and prolonging the issue would only threaten regional peace. Addressing the passing out parade in Risalpur, he said that Pakistan considers India’s annexation of Kashmir illegal as the occupied valley is Pakistan’s jugular vein. He further said that until the Kashmir issue is resolved peacefully, regional peace will be threatened. The CJCSC said that the issue of occupied Kashmir should be resolved according to the United Nations Security Council (UNSC) resolutions. STAFF REPORT

LHC Larger benCH to deCide nab CHief’S fate LAHORE



HE Lahore High Court (LHC) on Thursday constituted a larger bench to take up a petition challenging the appointment of Justice (r) Javed Iqbal as chairman of the National Accountability Bureau (NAB) as well as all actions taken by the corruption watchdog under his chairmanship. The bench, which is constituted and headed by LHC Chief Justice Sardar Mohammad Shamim Khan, comprises Justice Qasim Khan, Justice Malik Shahzad and Justice Asjad Javed Gharal. The petition, filed by Advocate AK Dogar in March this year, sought a high court order to quash the appointment of the NAB chairman and a reversal of all actions taken by the accountability watchdog under his chairmanship. The petitioner had contended that the

Justice Iqbal appointed “in violation of the laws and the Constitution”. According to the petitioner, all actions taken by the bureau should therefore also be considered in violation of the law and so should be declared null and void. He had also asked the court to reverse the sentence of incarcerated former prime minister Nawaz Sharif, as he was put in jail under NAB laws. Justice Qasim Khan, after hearing arguments, had rejected the plea for the release of Nawaz Sharif on the grounds that the former premier’s bail applications are already pending before the Islamabad High Court (IHC). However, Justice Khan had referred the matter of the NAB chairman’s appointment to the LHC chief justice with a recommendation of constituting a larger bench to hear the case. Meanwhile, the IHC accepted for hearing the bail application of Nawaz Sharif and directed the accountability watchdog to submit its reply to the petition within two weeks.

PM Imran’s visit to Saudi Arabia, Iran ‘on the cards’: FO ISLAMABAD STAFF REPORT

Foreign Office Spokesperson Dr Mohammad Faisal on Thursday said that the possibility of a visit by Prime Minister Imran Khan to Saudi Arabia and Iran was “on the cards”. Addressing his weekly press briefing, Dr Faisal, in response to a question said: “The possibility of a visit of [the] prime minister to Saudi Arabia and Iran is on the cards and I will update you as things unfold.” Asked another question with regards to whether the possible visit was a continuation of the premier’s recent visits to the United States and China or whether it had to with the regional situation, the FO spokesperson said: “[I] don’t want to say anything further on this.” Media reports quoting sources had said that Prime

Minister Imran was expected to hold consultations for the visits after returning from China and the dates for the potential trips would be discussed in the consultations. While visiting the United States in September for the United Nations General Assembly, the prime minister said that US President Donald Trump had asked him to help defuse tensions with Iran, adding that he had already spoken with Iranian President Hassan Rouhani in an attempt to mediate. The premier had added that prior to arriving in New York he had visited Saudi Arabia and spoken to Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman who also asked him to talk to Rouhani. Tehran and Washington have been at loggerheads since May last year when Trump abandoned a 2015 nuclear deal and began reimposing

sanctions on Iran in a stated campaign of “maximum pressure”. The United States blames Iran for an attack on the world’s biggest crude oil processing facility in Saudi Arabia on September 14 and has said they will present evidence to back that up. Commenting on Turkey’s operation against Kurdish fighters in northeast Syria, Dr Faisal said: “We appreciate Turkey’s positive role in finding a viable political solution to the conflict in Syria. We also acknowledge and commend Turkey’s humanitarian efforts by graciously hosting over 3.5 million Syrian refugees on its soil. “We recognise Turkey’s legitimate security concerns in the region. Like Pakistan, Turkey has also been a victim of terrorism,” he said. The FO spokesperson added that Pakistan has and continues to support the territorial integrity of Syria and “expresses the

hope that a political solution to the conflict will be reached at the earliest that takes into account concerns of all regional stakeholders and parties to the conflict”. INDIA’S RAFALE JETS: In response to a question regarding France’s delivery to India of its first Rafale fighter jet and Pakistan’s concerns, Dr Faisal said that Pakistan has spoken about a security and arms race in the region in detail before and its position remains the same. “Pakistan is not ready to enter an arms race in any region. Our focus and particularly this government’s focus is human development, education, health, etc.” “We urge the whole world not to take this region to an arms race. But if need be, February 27 is before you, we know how to defend ourselves, whether it be Rafael or anything else.”

IHC rejects plea to dismiss FIR against Musharraf in Lal Masjid case ISLAMABAD STAFF REPORT

The Islamabad High Court (IHC) on Thursday rejected a plea seeking the dismissal of a first information report (FIR) against former military strongman General (r) Pervez Musharraf in Lal Masjid case. According to details, IHC Chief Justice Athar Minallah announced the ruling during the hearing of the Ghazi murder case. Earlier in May, the Supreme Court had disposed of a suo motu notice


related to Lal Masjid and Jamia Hafsa after an assurance by the attorney general and the Capital Development Authority (CDA) that the grievances of clerics would be addressed. However, the prosecutor stated that there are several issues in the case due to which it cannot be wrapped up. “The case was not for a plot only. There is an issue of blood money too,” counsel said. To which, Justice Gulzar replied that the session court would be responsible for these issues.

Friday, 11 October, 2019




HE Supreme Court (SC) on Thursday stated that the constitution guarantees an individual the freedom to hold and profess the faith of his choice, adding that all citizens are equal before the law and are entitled to equal protection no matter what religion they adhere to while acquitting a blasphemy accused after 19 years of imprisonment. According to the details, a sessions court had sentenced Hassan to death for offences under Sections 295-A, 295-C & 298-A of the Pakistan Penal Code, 1860 in July 2002. A high court in September 2010 had retained the penalty. The convict later appealed in the SC which granted leave to his plea in 2013. After the passage of six years, the court resumed hearing of the case. The order said a criminal charge is to be essentially settled on positive proof alone and not on perceptional or optical paradigms. “The same is required in the present case; nonetheless, [such positive proof is] hopelessly out of sight.” The court noted that it would be grievously unsafe to maintain conviction without the potential risk of error. “Therefore, by extending the

benefit of the doubt, the criminal appeal is allowed; the impugned judgment is set aside; the appellant is acquitted of the charges and shall be released forthwith, if not required in any other case. The office shall ensure destruction of entire derogatory material and copies thereof, at all tiers”. The complainant, Ismail Qureshi, had received a series of letters containing blasphemous content. In one such letter, the alleged sender had established his identity by attaching a copy of the National Identity card of the accused Wajeeh-ul-Hassan, who was

naB moves IHC to file more evidence against nawaz’s acquittal in Flagship case ISLAMABAD: The National Accountability Bureau (NAB) has filed a miscellaneous petition in the Islamabad High Court (IHC) seeking permission to present more documentary evidence against former prime minister Nawaz Sharif’s Dec 24, 2018 acquittal in the Flagship reference. In the plea submitted through Deputy Prosecutor General Sardar Muzaffar Abbasi on Thursday, NAB requested the court to allow it present evidence it had earlier submitted in the accountability court. The documentary evidence, the plea stated, includes former prime minister’s tax record and property details. The petition said the court on June 25 asked NAB to submit Sharif’s tax record and property details that were earlier submitted in the accountability court. NAB also has original record of the evidence. The documents include income tax returns of Sharif and his sons – Hasan and Hussain – as well as details of their companies in the United Arab Emirates (UAE), the United Kingdom (UK) and the British Virgin Islands (BVI). Other documents enclosed with NAB’s petition also include annual record of their companies in the UK and UAE and details of the properties owned by their companies. STAFF REPORT

later arrested. The court wondered why Wajeeh who consistently hid over a long period of time, finally dispatched a copy of his ID so as to voluntarily rope himself in a case that might well cost him his neck. “There appears no earthly reason for his choice; if at all, it is assumed that he was on a suicidal course, he could have simply mentioned his identity in the letters or could come forward, as according to the prosecution, he presented himself on 21-5-2001,” it noted. The order said it is well settled that a weak piece of evidence cannot

corroborate another weak piece of evidence. “Absconsion cannot be viewed as proof of the crime. People stay away from the law for a variety of reasons not necessarily compatible with the hypothesis of guilt; to avoid the impending wrath of opponents in hostile environments, more often than not compel even the innocent into recusal of safety”. The court said it cannot dismiss the appellant’s plea of being a faithful Muslim nor can possibly take exception, in the absence of evidence to the contrary to his acclaimed unflinching conviction in the injunctions of his faith.

NAB to question Nawaz Sharif in Chaudhry Sugar Mills case LaHore STAFF REPORT

The National Accountability Bureau (NAB) has been granted permission to question incarcerated former prime minister Nawaz Sharif in the ongoing Chaudhry Sugar Mills case. NAB prosecutor Hafiz Asad had earlier sought permission from the court to allow the Bureau to investigate the former PM. The court accepted the plea in light of recently found documents confirming Sharif as a beneficiary in the mills. It is pertinent to mention here that Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PMLN) leaders Shehbaz Sharif, Maryam Nawaz, Hamza Shehbaz and Yousaf Abbas are already under NAB investigations in the reference. Sources claimed that NAB has traced a number of telegraphic transfers (TTs)

from foreign countries to the former PM’s account. Special Assistant to Prime Minister on Accountability Shahzad Akbar, in a press conference, had claimed that the Sharif family had used the Chaudhry Sugar Mills for money laundering and illegal transfer of its shares. The probe revealed that a $15 million loan was taken for the apparent reason of setting up the mill despite the fact that the mill had already been established before the loan was granted, claimed Akbar. He said that according to the record of the State Bank of Pakistan, the loan was never transferred. The special assistant to the PM added that around Rs7 million worth of the mills’ shares were transferred to PML-N vice president Maryam Nawaz in 2008, which were later transferred to her cousin Yousaf Abbas in 2010.



Rifts widening between PML-n, says Firdous Special Assistant to Prime Minister on Information and Broadcasting Dr Firdous Ashiq Awan said, while commenting on the reports of rifts between the party ranks, said that conflicting interests and statements of its leaders are deepening the rift between the party leadership. “On one hand, Shehbaz Sharif announced the formation of a committee for taking the final decision on the Azadi March, and on the other hand, Captain (r) Safdar announced a decision on his own,” she said in a tweet on Thursday. “Conflict of interest and conflicting statements of its leaders are deepening the rift between the party leadership,” she added. Speaking about the Azadi March, she said that Fazl should not sabotage October 27 with his march because Kashmiris across the world would be observing a black day against Indian occupation. “His march has already sparked clashes between Pakistan Muslim league-Nawaz (PML-N) and Pakistan People’s Party (PPP),” she added. Earlier in the day, reports surfaced that during the Central Executive Committee (CEC) meeting of PML-N on Wednesday, Shehbaz had criticised his elder brother Nawaz Sharif for not paying heed to his advises. However, hours later, PML-N Spokesperson Marriyum Aurangzeb denied the reports. NEWS DESK

PM tasks Qadri with wooing Fazl Prime Minister (PM) Imran Khan on Thursday tasked Religious Affairs Minister Noor-ul-Haq Qadri to formulate a plan for dealing with Maulana Fazlur Rehman’s Azad March that is set to begin on October 27. According to media reports, the minister, during a telephone call with the premier, was assigned with the task of contacting the Jamiat Ulema-e Islam- Fazl (JUI-F) leadership to seek details of the party’s plan and chalking out a plan to deal with protesters. The prime minister has also asked Qadri to present recommendations with regard to the protest that Maulana plans to hold in the federal capital. the premier would hold consultations in a meeting in the light of recommendations presented by the religious affairs minister. They said the minister is also expected to contact the JUI-F Ameer. Maulana Fazlur Rehman on Wednesday said that participants of his march would enter Islamabad on October 31. Earlier, the party had announced to hold the protest on October 27 and sought permission from local authorities for a gathering near Islamabad’s D-Chowk. NEWS DESK

BHC grants protective bail to akram Khan Durrani in corruption cases QUETTA: The Balochistan High Court (BHC) on Thursday granted protective bail to former Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KP) chief minister (CM) and Jamiat Ulema-e-Islam (JUI-F) leader Akram Khan Durrani for 15 days. A two-member bench comprising Justice Naeem Akhtar Afghan and Justice Hameedullah Baloch heard the petition of Akram Khan Durrani. The BHC approved his request and granted the protective bail in three cases, including alleged corruption in the housing scheme and assets beyond means case. According to the NAB notices, Durrani was directed to appear before investigation officer (IO) and deputy director Mohammad Adeel Akhtar in the Rawalpindi NAB office on Oct 7. Reportedly, the accountability watchdog has ordered Durrani to present record and details of assets owned by him and his family members including wife and children. INP

PPP won’t participate in JUI-F’s India left fuming as China’s Xi backs Pakistan on IOK dharna, only to join rally neW deLHi AGENCIES

neWS deSK Pakistan People’s Party (PPP) has announced that they although they will not participate in the upcoming dharna of Jamiat Ulema-e-IslamFazl (JUI-F), they would join the Azadi March rally with Maulana Fazlur Rehman. Addressing a press conference, PPP leaders Nayyar Bukhari and Qamar Zaman Kaira said that his party does not believe in ‘dharna politics’.

‘FAZL TO LEAD AZADI MARCH FROM SUKKUR ON OCT 27’ JUI-F chief Maulana Fazlur Rehman has decided to lead Azadi March from Sukkur on Oct 27, a private news channel reported on Thursday. The campaign will be started from Sindh as sources close to Rehman say that he fears being arrested by the PTI-led provincial governments in Punjab, KP and Balochistan which might also attempt to hamper the march. It was learnt that the Sindh government will help Rehman’s Azadi March by providing facilities that would allow the protest to gain momentum by the time it enters Punjab. Sources say that the JUI-F chief does not intend for a prolonged sit-in in the federal capital like the one led by Prime Minister Imran Khan when he was in opposition. Rehman said he will announce the next plan of action himself after reaching Islamabad. “Protests will be staged nationwide if Azadi March is disrupted,” he warned. NEWS DESK

New Delhi reacted crossly Wednesday after Chinese President Xi Jinping backed Prime Minister Imran Khan on Indian-occupied Kashmir, just two days before Indian premier Narendra Modi was due to host the Chinese president for an “informal summit”. Xi told PM Imran at talks in Beijing ahead of the Chinese leader’s meeting with Modi in Chennai on Friday and Saturday that Beijing was paying close attention and that the facts are clear, the Xinhua state news agency reported. He also said he was watching the situation in Kashmir and would support Pakistan in issues related to its core interests, according to the Chinese news agency. “China supports Pakistan to safe-


guard its own legitimate rights and hopes that the relevant parties can solve their disputes through peaceful dialogue,” Xi said. A joint statement added that China “opposes any unilateral actions that complicate the situation” while the dispute “should be properly and peacefully resolved based on the UN Charter, relevant UN Security Council resolutions and bilateral agreements.” India’s Foreign Ministry said however: “India’s position has been consistent and clear that Jammu & Kashmir is an integral part of India. China is well aware of our position. It is not for other countries to comment on the internal affairs of India.” ‘VERY DELICATE’: India and China’s ties have historically been testy, and recent events surrounding Kashmir — in particular Beijing’s diplomatic support to Islamabad at

the United Nations — have added to strains. “China sympathises and supports the situation faced by Pakistan on this issue. So, at present, the relationship between China and India has reached a very delicate point,” said Cheng Xiaohe at the Department of International Politics at Renmin University. In addition, part of China’s Belt and Road initiative, a vast global infrastructure programme, includes a major project through Azad Jammu and Kashmir. India’s move in August to split occupied Kashmir into two irked China because it will make the Ladakh region of the state a separate Indian administrative territory. China thundered in August that India had “continued to undermine China’s territorial sovereignty by unilaterally changing its domestic law”.


Friday, 11 October, 2019





320C 200C


320C 200C




PLRA intRoduces Chunian murders suspect sent on physical remand onLine fAciLity foR PAyment of fARd LAHORE





UNJAB Land Revenue Authority (PLRA) has introduced an online facility that would allow it to collect land taxes, documents and mutations online. The new service will also allow the payment of Fard (land document) fee to be made online. Pakistan Today learnt that the service was introduced by the PLRA in association with State Bank of Pakistan, 1Link and the department of finance. A PLRA official told Pakistan Today, “The amount of e-stamp paper, Fard fee, mutation fee and taxes can be paid online to commercial banks through 1Link whereas the facility of online Fard is available on PLRA’s official website”. “Any customer can avail the option of online Fard. PLRA will send a code to the customer’s registered mobile number which would enable the customer to select the relevant district and Mouza. The customer would then be able to get the Fard by paying an online fee of Rs500. The facility of online Fard is also available for overseas Pakistani and is accessible in several embassies”.

Another PLRA official while seeking anonymity said, “Earlier land records and data were kept solely by patwaris who were also assigned to collect the fee of issuing copies of land documents by entering the diary number. Patwaris were often accused of issuing documents without entering diary numbers which allowed them to keep the amount in their pockets and not submit it to the government. This practice, which was not entirely uncommon in land transactions was costing millions of rupees in losses to the national treasury. Moreover, in most cases, patwaris would also ask for extra money for the issuance of documents or processing of mutations. The introduction of service of this kind has dealt a huge blow to the patwari’s monopoly. While talking to Pakistan Today, Director-General PLRA Hafiz Shaukat Ali said, “The land data of over 55 million people are secure with PLRA. This year almost 5.5 million people availed PLRA’s services. We collected revenue of Rs17 billion the previous year while the issuance of online Fard is expected to drastically increase revenue volume. We are also in the process of establishing Qanu Goi Arazi Record Center and Mobile Arazi Record Center.”

An anti-terrorism court on Thursday sent the prime suspect accused of abducting, raping and murdering four minor boys in Chunian on a sevenday physical remand. The arrest of the prime suspect, Sohail Shahzad, 27 was announced by Punjab Chief Minister Usman Buzdar on Oct 1 after Punjab Forensic Science Authority (PFSA) reported that Shahzad’s DNA matched with that of a slain minor, Faizan.

CTD arrests four of Hafiz Saeed's aides LAHORE: Four aides of Jamaatud Dawa (JuD) chairman Hafiz Saeed were arrested by the Counter-Terrorism Department (CTD) on Thursday. The arrested suspects were identified as Zafar Iqbal, Yahya Aziz, Muhammad Ashraf, and Abdul Salam. The four aides will appear before a trial court on Friday. Previously, the CTD had arrested two suspected terrorists associated with a banned outfit during a raid in Gujranwala. The suspects were arrested during a raid near Alipur Chowk, according to CTD officials. The arrested terrorists were identified as Muhammad Akmal and Ghulam Hussain. Explosive material, hate literature and cash were seized from their possession. The suspects were reportedly planning to target officers of intelligence agencies. The leader of the proscribed group was taken into custody in July and has been on judicial remand ever since. The move comes ahead of next week’s Financial Action Task Force (FATF) meeting to review progress made on controlling terror financing and money laundering. STAFF REPORT

Child dies, 3 injured after falling in open manhole in Rajanpur RAJANPUR: A child died while three others were wounded after they fell into an uncovered manhole here on Thursday. According to details, while playing near their residence in Rajanpur, four children fell into an uncovered manhole. The rescue teams rushed the scene, pulled out the injured children and shifted them to hospital where one child succumbed to his wounds. Residents of the area staged protest demonstration against the concern authority and complained that this is not the first incident of its kind and there are several open manholes awaiting more tragedies. INP


The chief minister added that the culprit was caught after DNA samples from 1,649 people were profiled and that Shahzad’s DNA matched with samples collected at the crime scene. Four children — aged between eight and 12 years — had gone missing since June with the latest, Faizan, 8, disappearing on the night of September 16. The remains of three were found on September 17 from sand dunes near Chunian bypass. The police later learnt that the minors were murdered after being raped.

Dharabi Lake to be developed as tourist spot: CM Buzdar CHAKWAL STAFF REPORT

Punjab Chief Minister Sardar Usman Buzdar paid a surprise visit to Dharabi Lake in Chakwal on Thursday while en-route to Lahore from Islamabad on a helicopter. He inspected the activities being done to promote tourism in the area. Speaking on the occasion, Usman Buzdar said that the Dharabi Lake will be developed as a tourist spot, adding that resthouse will be constructed along with link roads. I have laid the foundation stone of project meant for developing a resort in Dharabi Lake along with the construction

of link roads and an amount of Rs.8 crore has been allocated for this project, he added. He further stated that hatchery industry will also be promoted along with the start of water sports activities in this lake. The chief minister hoped that this initiative would promote tourism along with earning opportunities. Promotion of tourism-related activities will boost economic opportunities and area will be developed due to the improvement of road networks, he added. 2He also took an aerial view of Dadhocha Dam near Rawat. This dam project has been started to fulfil the future drinking water needs of Rawalpindi and its adjoining areas.

204 cases of dengue virus reported in Punjab LAHORE: The Punjab Health Department on Thursday confirmed that 204 new patients of mosquito-borne dengue fever were brought to different hospitals across the province during the last 24 hours. The officials from the provincial health department detailed that the tally mounts to 5,650 for dengue patients this year including 140

new cases were reported in Rawalpindi, 24 in Lahore so far. The death toll rises to 10 during this year in the province. The health department elaborated that the surveillance teams have checked more than 274,320 places in rural parts and overall 76,580 urban places to detect dengue larvae. STAFF REPORT

Friday, 11 October, 2019

Commission reCommends relaxing rules for housing soCieties in islamabad ISLAMABAD



HE commission formed by the federal government to revise the master plan of Islamabad has proposed relaxation in rules for setting up housing societies in the capital. Sources said the commission proposed changes to the ‘rigid’ rules and from now housing schemes could be developed on 200 kanals instead of the earlier 400 kanal minimum requirement. The commission will present its draft report before the federal cabinet soon. It proposed that the CDA should allow developers to set up housing schemes on 200 kanals subject to fulfillment of planning parameters. The sources said the commission members at their last meeting held on Oct 4 observed that because of the ‘rigid’ rules housing societies had been avoiding getting no-objection certificates (NOC) from the CDA that resulted into unauthorised construction. Currently, there are over 100 unauthorised housing schemes in the capital

and owners of majority of them have also sold out the land which was initially reserved for green areas, amenities, schools and parks. The civic agency never took any serious action on time rather in most of the cases kept itself restricted to issuing only ‘notices’ to the violators. On the other hand, the citizens who

purchased plots in housing schemes are now suffering because of the illegal status of the housing schemes. On the recommendations of the CDA, utility companies are also not providing them gas and electricity connections. Some CDA officials said that in many housing schemes the owners had been facing shortage of the required


400 kanals and after selling the available plots had left the projects abandoned, causing problems for those who had purchased plots there. A senior officer of the CDA confirmed that from now a housing scheme could be developed on 200 kanals. He, however, said as per the set standards a housing scheme should be developed on 400 kanals. But in those cases where owners do not have 400 kanals, they would be allowed to develop a scheme on 200 kanals. But they will have to leave the amenity land in accordance with the formula of 400 kanals. “Personally, I support the commission’s decision. Now, the housing schemes have a fair chance of developing societies on 200 kanals as earlier it was practically difficult for them to acquire a 400 kanal compact piece of land in the capital,” he said. Meanwhile, the commission also recommended one more storey in all commercial centres which are already facing the issue of parking. However, CDA officials said plaza owners who would add a new storey would provide the required parking space.

Married women, single men under 30 most likely to commit suicide in Pakistan Mental health experts have said that married women and single men under the age of 30 in Pakistan are among groups most likely to commit suicide. Research showed that Pakistan’s highest-risk groups for suicide were different to those in other parts of the world. In the West, single men between the age of 50 and 60 are most likely to take their own lives. Speaking at various awareness activities in connection with World Mental Health Day 2019, leading psychiatrists of the country said the number of people with depression and anxiety stands at 33 percent in Pakistan. Thousands of people, including men, women and teenagers, commit suicide in Pakistan every year, and the ratio of depression and anxiety is four to five times higher in Pakistan as compared to the rest of the world. Terming depression the main cause of suicide, the experts urged people to seek medical assistance from trained and qualified mental health experts, help others in living a happy life to enjoy their own lives. The experts were speaking at a seminar organised by the Department of Psychiatry, Jinnah Postgraduate Medical Centre. It was addressed by IGP Gilgit Baltistan Dr Sanaullah Abbasi and eminent psychiatrist Prof Haroon Ahmed, among others. Thousands of people, including men, women and teenagers, commit suicide in Pakistan every year, and the ratio of depression and anxiety is four to five times higher in Pakistan as compared to the rest of the world. NEWS DESK


KP given last chance to issue notification of amendments in local bodies law ISLAMABAD STAFF REPORT

The Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) has given a last chance to Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KP) government to issue a notification of amendments in local bodies law till October 22. The three-member bench of ECP headed by Chief Election Commissioner Sardar Raza Khan heard the case related to the KP local bodies election. At the start of the hearing additional advocate general, KP recited verses of the Quran, to which, the CEC remarked that “the verses you recited always go against you only.” CEC remarks brought laughter in the whole room. Additional Advocate General informed the CEC that delimitation work for creation of city and tehsil councils has not been started yet adding that after 18th amendment the government has been facing several problems while determination of general and special seats is possible after delimitation while army will be needed for the election in amalgamated districts of erstwhile FATA. On which, CEC remarked that “it was the work that have to be done by the KP government first adding that if KP government didn’t have people then we could provide person to do such task.” Sardar Raza Khan said that “18th amendment has resolved issues while it can be happened that that KP government have to work after the 18th amendment adding that army will be needed to ECP not to the KP government while may the KP government wanted to disturb situation.” The ECP giving last chance to the KP to issuing notification of amendments in the local government laws adjourned the hearing.

Manmohan Singh formally invited for Kartarpur Corridor inauguration ISLAMABAD STAFF REPORT

General Bajwa meets commander of Chinese PLA RAWALPINDI STAFF REPORT

Chief of Army Staff (COAS) General Qamar Javed Bajwa on Thursday met Commander of People’s Liberation Army (PLA) China. Both leaders discussed matters of mutual interest. Earlier, Gen Bajwa met Commander Army General Han Weiguo, People’s Liberation Army (PLA) and General Xu Qiliang, Vice Chairman of the Central Military Commission (CMC) at PLA HQ.

Regional security environment including situation in Indian Occupied Jammu & Kashmir (IOJ&K) and Pak China defence cooperation were discussed. COAS apprised Chinese military leadership about consequences of the ongoing situation in IOJ&K if it’s not amicably resolved for which India needs to respect UN resolutions and ensure the human rights of Kashmiris. Chinese military leadership supporting Pakistan’s principled stance on Kashmir issue, and appreciated sane Pakistani approach in the interest

of peace. They agreed that continued unresolved Pakistan- India tension will have serious implications for peace and stability in the region. COAS apprised them that Pakistan looks forward to peace but that shall not be at the cost of any compromise on principles or honour and dignity of the nation. Both sides also discussed the developing situation in Gulf and efforts for peace in Afghanistan. Both sides agreed to enhance existing defence cooperation in line with history of mutual time tested relationship.

Former Indian premier Manmohan Singh has been formally extended an invitation by Pakistan to attend the inauguration of Kartarpur Corridor in November on the occasion of the 550th birth anniversary of Sikhism’s central figure, Baba Guru Nanak, Foreign Office (FO) said on Thursday. FO Spokesperson Dr Mohammad Faisal, while addressing his weekly briefing said that Kartarpur Corridor is expected to be completed on time and the opening ceremony will take place as per Prime Minister Imran Khan’s commitment. However, the FO is yet to take decisions on other invitations, the spokesperson added. On September 30, Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi had said that Pakistan would invite the former Indian premier for the opening ceremony of Kartarpur Corridor. “Kartarpur corridor is an important project, the prime minister has a personal interest in it,” Qureshi had said in a video message. “After consultations, Pakistan has decided to invite Manmohan Singh to the inauguration, who we hold in high regard. He will represent the Sikh community,” the foreign minister had added. Days later, on October 3, conflicting reports had emerged pertaining to the former Indian premier’s visit. India’s NDTV had reported that Singh had accepted Pakistan’s invitation but other Indian media outlets had contradicted NDTV’s report.

HRW asks India should to end crackdown, release detainees in held Kashmir NEW DELHI INP

The Human Rights Watch (HRW) has urged India to release political prisoners, end crackdown operations and restore internet and mobile services in occupied Kashmir. In a statement issued on Thursday, the HRW South Asia Director Meenakshi Ganguly said that it has been over two months Aug 5 decision

yet restrictions including a lockdown on the internet and mobile phone services remained in place. Ganguly said that numerous foreign leaders have expressed concern over the Indian government’s continued detention of Kashmiri leaders, the use of torture, restrictions on movement enforced by a massive military presence and problems in accessing public services, including emergency medical care. “India has said that the restrictions

have saved lives and maintained order. But fear of arbitrary arrests and shootings by Indian forces has left the Kashmir valley full of shuttered shops and empty classrooms,” she observed “The authorities have blocked visits by diplomats, international journalists, Indian activists, and opposition politicians.” “Indian authorities should announce an end to repressive actions and hold to account forces’ personnel responsible


for abuses. They should release all those detained without charge and restore communications. Months of a broad-based clampdown on civil liberties can’t be justified by vague claims of maintaining order,” the statement said. Indian activists filed a complaint with the Supreme Court to ensure the protection of children after the media reported that many had been detained, beaten, or denied safe access to schools.

Police say the reports are exaggerated, but still provided a list of 144 children, one as young as 9, who had been taken into custody, Meenakshi Ganguly said. Indian authorities have relied on progovernment media and social media supporters to defend the crackdown and denounce rights activists. Any criticism of the government can draw swift rebuke, including sedition, which can stifle peaceful dissent, the statement said.

Friday, 11 October, 2019




OMar ahMed

AVING failed to dislodge Syrian President Bashar Al-Assad after eight years of conflict and with the twin political processes of the UN and the Astana initiatives moving a step closer towards peace, the alliance against Iran appears to have turned its sights on Iran’s neighbour and other ally, Iraq by attempting to hijack yet another legitimate protest with the prospects of turning it into a coup d’état. Leaked diplomatic cables from 2006 – five years before the Syrian uprising, reveal that the former US Ambassador to Syria, William Roebuck, suggested America seek to undermine the sovereignty of the Syrian state through destabilisation and exploiting vulnerabilities in the Assad government – including playing on “fears of Iranian influence”. Now if we are to believe US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo’s assertion – without evidence – that Iran was behind attacks on Saudi’s largest oilfields, President Donald Trump certainly had no intention of escalating tensions militarily. Despite Pompeo’s sabre rattling that the attacks constituted a “declaration of war”, his Iranian counterpart Mohammed Javad Zarif was quick to assert that any US or

Saudi strike on Iran will cause all-out war. Thus, despite being more than militarily capable of carrying out direct strikes against Iran, the potential repercussions to the US and its allies in the wider region and to the global economy render such actions strategically misplaced. Ultimately, the US and its allies lack the political will to wage conventional war against the Islamic Republic. Naturally the anti-Iran nexus must then opt for indirect, covert attacks against Tehran via its regional allies and interests. Which brings us to the current activities in Iraq. It has been alleged that sources within Iraq’s Prime Minister’s Office have said, “the recent demonstrations were already planned a couple of months ago. Baghdad was working to try and ease the situation in the country, particularly since the demands of the population are legitimate.” Speaking on the number of civilians killed along with some security forces and government buildings being set alight or destroyed, the sources are also said to have added: “This sort of behaviour has misdirected the real grievances of the population onto a disastrous course: creating chaos in the country. Who benefits from the disarray in Iraq?” The founder and head of the Iranian-supported Asaib Ahl Al-Haq paramilitary group and political party, cleric

Qais Al-Khazali, echoed similar sentiments by foretelling over two months ago that there were plans to stage a coup in November, with engineered protests erupting in October. Al-Khazali has expressed claims of conspiracy previously, as with the Basra demonstrations in September last year whilst acknowledging that “the protests were originally legitimate and true”. Adding weight to Al-Khazali’s comments, there have been reports that the Iraqi intelligence had been made aware of plans of a US-backed coup involving Iraqi military officers three months ago. This may also explain the Iraqi government’s controversial and abrupt decision to demote the popular Lieutenant General Abdul Wahab Al-Saadi from his position as commander of the Iraqi Counter-Terrorism Forces (ICTS) without giving a reason. Instrumental as he was in leading the victory over Daesh in Mosul, he was perceived to be too close to the US military and neutral towards Iran and could well be one of the “military officers” alluded to above. Meanwhile, mainstream media and human rights organisations have been busy reporting on unknown snipers targeting civilian protestors which are being attributed to pro-Iranian paramilitaries, unfortunately these are hallmarks of external involvement in seeking to exacerbate and convert anti-government protests

into a fully-fledged revolution. “The use of mercenaries, death squads and snipers by Western intelligence agencies is well documented. No rational government attempting to stay in power would resort to unknown snipers to intimidate its opponents,” political analyst Gearoid O Colmain writes. Examples include Ukraine in 2014 – where snipers targeting demonstrators were revealed to be hired Georgian and Lithuanian marksmen – in Venezuela in 2002 and during the so-called Arab Spring. Indeed it has even been suggested that the unknown snipers have targeted both protestors and security forces alike. Iran too reportedly unveiled an assassination plot last month against Major General Qassem Soleimani, senior commander of the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC), with the alleged joint “Arab-Israeli” secret services training and preparing the suspects in an unnamed “neighbouring country” close to Iran. However, it appears the leadership under Ayatollah Ali Khamenei are vigilantly following events in Iraq, the Supreme Leader spoke recently of “enemies” seeking to sow division between Tehran and Baghdad, adding that the Islamic Republic is taking pro-active measures in preventing another “Syria” from occurring. On the social media front to this engineered uprising, Dr Marc Owen Jones,

assistant professor in Middle Eastern Studies, has an interesting Twitter thread on hashtags in support of the Iraqi people and describing a “revolution” at hand. Jones has reason to believe it is an influence campaign with almost 20 per cent of accounts likely to be fake and a majority which do not have any location data and are sent by iPhones (the author is doubtful as to how popular these are in Iraq compared to other phones). Interestingly he identified one of the first accounts to post the hashtags featured a lot of Saudi and Iraqi flags, noting that one of the most telling indicators of “inorganic activity” are accounts created in a short time frame – based on his research, the “fake” accounts were created over three days (1-3 October). Although some Iraqis are finding loopholes in accessing the social media, it has been blocked nationwide during the protests – with the exception of the Kurdistan region. Again, the online information campaign is largely being conducted outside of Iraq. It remains to be seen how successful the localised protests will be in transforming into the intended populist revolution resulting in favourable regime change by those opposed to Tehran’s hegemony. However, should it fail, it won’t be the first time the anti-Iranian alliance has fallen short in its indirect war of attrition against Iran’s “Axis of Resistance”.


DER SPIEGEL Matthias Gebauer

DER SPIEGEL: President Ghani, both you and Abdullah Abdullah are claiming victory in September's election even before the counting of the ballots has really begun. Will we see the same chaos and infighting that we did in 2014? Ghani: I have not claimed victory -that needs to be very clear. My team and I are strictly abiding by the rules and will wait up to the moment the election committee announces the DER SPIEGEL: But your running mate, Amrullah Saleh, made comments that were perceived as declaring victory. Ghani: There is initial confidence, but that is all. DER SPIEGEL: On Election Day, almost one-third of the polling stations were closed due to security risks and threats. How valid and legitimate is an election in which whole parts of the country are barred from voting? Ghani: First of all, we have to consider that this is still Afghanistan. I am asking you: Would anybody in another country participate in an election if they were up against the same massive threats and dangers that every voter here is facing? I have the utmost respect for any voter who came out. Ultimately, the goal was to be able to hold this election at all given the dire scenario -- and we succeeded in facilitating that. DER SPIEGEL: But there is sure to be a confrontation with Abdullah, who joined your government as chief executive officer as part of a power-sharing agreement in 2014. Ghani: There must not be chaos like in 2014. We do not have time for a months-long power struggle this time. We need to proceed, and a government with two heads as we had in the last five years will not succeed in this scenario.

DER SPIEGEL: According to the official estimate, turnout was historically low this time, with only 2.5 out of 9 million voters casting ballots. It seems the Afghan people are fed up with democracy after fraud-plagued elections in recent years. Ghani: We have to view the participation in relation to the threats all Afghans are facing. Given the situation, the numbers weren't too bad. I think Afghans are not fed up by democracy but by the unity government of the last years that was not able to push reforms forward to enhance the living situation. They are fed up with all these backroom deals and compromises, which slowed the delivery of any political measure. This needs to change now -- we have no time left. DER SPIEGEL: The Taliban say the low participation numbers underscore how tight their grip already is on large parts of the country. Ghani: The Taliban's goal in recent years was to overthrow the legitimate government in Kabul and divide the country into the government-controlled areas and the territory they hold. They did not achieve that. Only a few years ago, we still had more than 130,000 international soldiers here in Afghanistan to secure the election and yet we still faced massive threats and saw attacks against the polling stations. These days we have taken over responsibility for our own country. Obviously, I would like to see a better security situation. Of course, I would rather only focus on reforms and not a war against the Taliban. But that's not the Afghan reality today. DER SPIEGEL: Just a few days before the election, Donald Trump used Twitter to announce the abrupt end of peace talks with the Taliban. Were you angry or relieved? Ghani: Neither. I had repeatedly warned the U.S., the last time only four days before the collapse of the talks, that Washington's approach of negotiating with the Taliban alone would be stillborn. Peace talks can only be successful if the Afghan government is not only joining, but also leading them. We have to return to this approach. We should never forget that it was the Kabul government that organized the first cease-fire with the Taliban, without international help. We need to come back to the course that is chosen

by us, not others. DER SPIEGEL: Did President Trump call you before he informed the world about his decision on Twitter? Ghani: No, usually Secretary of State Mike Pompeo talks to me - that's the protocol these days. But we were engaged before the Tweets came out. DER SPIEGEL: How close did it really come to a meeting between the Afghan government and the Taliban at Camp David? And what were your expectations for that meeting? Ghani: We did not expect more than a symbolic meeting, where both sides would formally commit to a political solution and to ending the violence to bring this shared goal forward. But it makes no sense to discuss it further. We were not expecting any historic deal. The ceasefire that President Trump accepted as a starting point for further talks was not delivered by the Taliban, who were either not able or not willing to deliver it. DER SPIEGEL: Do you know the reason? Ghani: The Taliban miscalculated massively on all fronts. First, they underestimated the resilience of the Afghan people, who they wanted to use to strengthen their position in negotiations by conducting one attack after the other. They also fatally misread President Trump. They wanted to portray the talks as their own success and they accelerated attacks to reach more of their goals during the talks even before any peace deal was reached. They painted a picture in which the Afghan government and the security forces have been defeated. But Afghanistan is not Vietnam -nobody is hanging on to helicopters here in Kabul to flee the country. DER SPIEGEL: How should things proceed now? Ghani: First, we need a common approach. By "we," I mean the government of Afghanistan together with the U.S. and the rest of the international community. The expectations on the Taliban were inflated in recent months because everybody was rushing only to the Taliban for the

peace talks and to reach quick results. Now we need a joint strategy again, which won't take months, but certainly a few weeks. DER SPIEGEL: What would you do differently if you were part of the talks? Ghani: I am not a very soft negotiator, everyone knows that. I am strictly interested in our interests. I would not accept a lasting agreement to make peace quickly if it did not address the substantial issues. DER SPIEGEL: What do you see as the guidelines or even red lines for the Afghan government? Ghani: Any deal with the Taliban must include a guarantee for the values of the Afghan constitution, human rights, democracy and women's rights. Without these, talks are pointless. We won't accept any inclusion of the Taliban in the government or even Afghan society without ironclad guarantees. DER SPIEGEL: The Taliban's emissaries are all well-known war commanders who led a bloody war against Western troops. How would you explain to the widow of an American or German soldier killed that these individuals are now about to land powerful positions in the government? Ghani: There are no words to heal the grief of a widow, but I would tell her that the international mission here changed our country substantially. Afghanistan will never again be a country where women are held at home as if in a cage. Furthermore, I would say the main goal of any peace deal is the end of the war and the end of the bloodshed against the international and the local troops. DER SPIEGEL: During the talks, we saw that the Taliban are either unwilling or unable to fulfill their promises -- in this case, the reduction of violence. Can they be trusted? Ghani: I never trusted anyone in my life without proof. Trust must be built through fulfilled promises. Afghanistan and the international community must now formulate their demands and lower expectations on the side of the Taliban.

We have to say very clearly that we will not surrender to them. The Taliban are completely wrong if they believe they can march into Kabul and reverse all the progress Afghanistan has made. They can play a role again, but they will have to face elections and they will have to have the support of the population to get any post in the government. DER SPIEGEL: Do you think the Taliban would accept elections? Ghani: They will have to. Look at the example of Gulbuddin Hekmatyar, the leader of a very powerful and ruthless Islamist guerilla group that led a war against us and the international troops for years. We convinced him after long negotiations to come to Kabul, where he lives in freedom. We kept our promise and he was a candidate in the current election. His results will also be a sort of a test to see if the Taliban have strong support among the people of Afghanistan. DER SPIEGEL: Beyond all the chaos in the White House, it seems clear that President Trump isn't the only one fed up with the U.S. mission in Afghanistan. Can you understand his frustration and that of the American people? Ghani: I totally understand that. I am aware that Afghanistan cannot be a millstone around the international community's neck forever. We also shouldn't forget that the U.S. started with a different mission than the one it has today. They wanted to root out al-Qaida after the horrible 9/11 attacks. I have full understanding for the will in Washington and elsewhere to withdraw their troops once this goal has been reached. DER SPIEGEL: Even if the Taliban were to agree to a deal, the question remains how much control the negotiators really have over all the movement and the terror groups like the Haqqani network or others. Ghani: Obviously, that is the $1 billion question. I have no clear answer or strategy for that yet. But if we can at least separate the Taliban from other militant groups here like the Islamic State, for example, we would weaken these groups significantly. DER SPIEGEL: Let us come back to the elections for a moment. What will you do if you are defeated by another candidate? Ghani: I would instantly go back to my love, which is teaching, research and writing. DER SPIEGEL: You don't sound as though you really fear you might have to move out of the presidential palace soon. Ghani: That depends on the Afghan citizens. The signs are good that I will have five more years to work hard for the future of Afghanistan.

Friday, 11 October, 2019

BritisH, irisH PMs MEEt ovEr BrExit stalEMatE LONDON



RITISH Prime Minister Boris Johnson and his Irish counterpart Leo Varadkar met for last-ditch Brexit talks on Thursday, with just days left to strike an EU divorce deal as both sides blame each other for the deadlock. Time is running out to sign off on any agreement at an October 17-18 European Union summit, ahead of Britain’s scheduled departure from the bloc at the end of the month after nearly five decades of membership. Johnson has vowed Britain will leave on October 31 with or without a deal — despite MPs passing a law last month that requires him to seek another Brexit delay if he fails to secure a pact at the summit. Johnson and Varadkar arrived in Liverpool, northwest England, according to an AFP photographer in the city, after days of recriminations over the failure to find an acceptable compromise on the key stumbling block over the Irish border. They were later seen arriving at the exclusive Thornton Manor estate across the River Mersey on The Wirral peninsular for what Downing Street said was “a private meeting to allow both leaders and their teams to have detailed discussions”. Varadkar told Ireland’s parliament on Wednesday that he would work “until the last moment” to get a deal, but added: “Certainly not at any cost.” After days of trading increasingly bitter accusations of inflexibility, the diplomacy appears to be intensifying in a late bid to find a breakthrough. “The reason the prime minister is meeting Leo Varadkar is not simply just to have a social conversation,” Business Minister Kwasi Kwarteng told BBC radio. “They are seriously focused on trying to resolve

Bangladesh court issues arrest warrant for Nobel laureate Yunus DHAKA: Bangladeshi economist and Nobel laureate Mohammad Yunus has been issued with an arrest warrant after failing to appear at a hearing over the sacking of workers at a company he heads, officials said on Thursday. A judge at a court in Dhaka issued the order on Wednesday as sacked workers from Grameen Communications (GC) lodged a complaint saying they were fired because they set up a trade union, court clerk M. Nuruzzaman told AFP. Yunus, who is chairman of GC, did not attend the hearing as he was abroad. The chief executive officer and a senior manager at the company appeared at the court and secured bail, Nuruzzaman said. “He (Yunus) left Bangladesh before receiving any summons for appearing before the court. As soon as he returns, an appropriate legal step shall be taken,” Yunus’s lawyer Kazi Ershadul Alam told AFP. AGENCIES

this issue and trying to get a deal on which basis we can leave the EU.” “We’re coming to a situation where I think a deal is possible”. Brexit Secretary Steve Barclay will meet his EU counterpart Michel Barnier in Brussels on Friday. “We’ve put forward serious proposals and have been willing to be flexible. Now it’s time for the EU to do the same,” Barclay said. But Barnier struck a downbeat tone Wednesday, telling the European Parliament that “we’re not on the point of envisioning and finding a deal”. And Guy Verhofstadt, the European Parliament’s


Brexit coordinator, weighed in, saying Britain’s proposals were “not serious” and were aimed at starting a “blame game”. “The real traitor is he or she who risks bringing disaster upon his country and it’s citizens, pushing the UK out of the EU,” the former Belgian premier tweeted. Johnson and Varadkar will focus their discussions on the Irish border — the key sticking point in tortuous negotiations that have dragged on for over two years. Johnson claims his proposal provides a new way to avoid a hard border between Northern Ireland, part of the United Kingdom, and EU member Ireland after Brexit. It would take Northern Ireland out of the EU’s customs union along with the rest of the UK, but keep it largely aligned with the bloc’s “single market” standards and regulations, subject to local consent in the province. Brussels is adamant it will not agree to any plan that undermines the single market or leaves Ireland exposed. Britain’s gross domestic product contracted by 0.1 percent in August, the Office for National Statistics said, in a sign that the economy is struggling in the run-up to Brexit. Economic activity fell back after rising by 0.4 percent in July. Some economists fear the country will fall into recession in the third quarter, after GDP fell by 0.2 percent in the second quarter, given the uncertainties surrounding Brexit. Meanwhile England’s Chief Medical Officer Sally Davies warned that people could die because of a a no-deal Brexit. “We cannot guarantee that there will not be shortages not only in medicines but technology and gadgets,” she told BBC radio. “And there may be deaths; we can’t guarantee there won’t.” The former head of Britain’s overseas intelligence agency MI6, John Sawers, also warned about the impact on security cooperation.

EBola virus Now squEEzEd iNto 'corNEr' of dr coNgo: wHo KINSHASA: Efforts to halt an Ebola epidemic in the Democratic Republic of Congo have made “significant progress”, with the virus now contained to a far smaller and mainly rural area, the World Health Organization (WHO) said Thursday. “We have put the virus in the corner,” Michael Ryan, the executive director of WHO’s Health Emergencies Programme, told reporters in Geneva. “I believe we have really squeezed the virus into a much smaller geographical area,” he said. Ebola is now essentially only transmitting within an area of eastern DRC between Mambasa, Komanda, Mandima and Beni, he said. DRC’s latest Ebola epidemic, which began in August 2018, has killed 2,144 people, making it the second deadliest outbreak of the virus, after the West Africa pandemic of 20142016. At the height of the latest outbreak, 207 “health zones” were affected by Ebola, a figure that now stands at only 27, Ryan said. But he stressed that despite a “much lower level of transmission”, the danger was not over. “The fact that it is a smaller space is positive, but … the disease has moved into more rural and more insecure areas,” he warned. Ebola fighters have been hindered by militia attacks in eastern DRC, as well as by resistance in communities to some of the methods used to rein in the virus.

Suspected IS radical stabs Indonesian security minister


A suspected IS radical stabbed Indonesia’s chief security minister Wiranto as he was stepping out of a vehicle on Thursday, leaving two deep wounds in his stomach and injuring three others in the attack, officials said. Television images showed security officers wrestling a man and a woman to the ground outside a university in Pandeglang on Java island after the attack on the 72year-old, who like many Indonesians goes by one name.

“Someone approached and attacked him,” National Police spokesman Dedi Prasetyo, adding that the couple had been arrested. Berkah Hospital spokesman Firmansyah said the former military general suffered “two deep wounds” in his stomach and may need surgery, but was conscious and in stable condition. Wiranto was later rushed by helicopter to the capital Jakarta. The other three victims — a local police chief and two aides — had non-life threatening injuries, the hospital said. The suspects were identified as 31-year-old Syahril Alamsyah and Fitri Andriana, 21. Police said Alamsyah had been “exposed to ISIL radicalism”, without elaborating. It was not immediately clear if either were members of one of the dozens of radical groups that have pledged loyalty to the militant Islamic State (IS) group in Indonesia, the world’s biggest Muslim majority nation. The attack comes just over a week before President Joko Widodo kicks off a second term after his April reelection. In May, police said Wiranto and three other top officials were targeted in a failed assassination plot linked to deadly riots in Jakarta after Widodo’s victory.

apple pulls Hong Kong app used by protesters after china warning SILICON VALLEY: Apple on Thursday removed a Hong Kong map application used by pro-democracy protesters, saying it endangered police, after China warned the US tech giant to drop the app. According to a statement published by the makers of, Apple said: “your app has been used in ways that endanger law enforcement and residents in Hong Kong”. The financial hub has been gripped by protests for four months, and there have been regular clashes between hardcore demonstrators and police. Apple’s withdrawal of the application from its App Store follows an accusation from China’s state media that the app “obviously helps rioters”. An opinion piece in the People’s Daily, the mouthpiece of the ruling Communist Party, said on Wednesday: “Nobody wants to drag Apple into the lingering unrest in Hong Kong. But people have reason to assume that Apple is mixing business with politics, and even illegal acts. “Apple has to think about the consequences of its unwise and reckless decision.” published the App Store Review’s statement on its Telegram channel, which has more than 70,000 subscribers. AGENCIES

Olga Tokarczuk, Peter Handke win Literature Nobels STOCKHOLM AGENCIES

Polish writer Olga Tokarczuk on Thursday won the 2018 Nobel Literature Prize, which was delayed over a sexual harassment scandal, while Austrian novelist and playwright Peter Handke took the 2019 award, the Swedish Academy said. Tokarczuk, 57, considered the most talented Polish novelist of her generation, was honoured “for a narrative imagination that with encyclopaedic passion represents the crossing of boundaries as a form of life”. Her books portray a polychromatic world perpetually in motion, with characters’ traits intermingled and language that is both precise and poetic. Tokarczuk’s first novel, “The Journey of the People of the Book,” released in 1993, chronicles a failed expedition to find a mysterious book. The daughter of a school librarian, she won the Booker International Prize along with her translator Jennifer Croft for her 2007 novel “Flights”, whose English version came out in 2017.

Her 900-page “The Books of Jacob”, which the Swedish Academy hailed as her “magnum opus”, spans seven countries, three religions and five languages, tracing the little-known history of Frankism, a Jewish messianic sect that sprang up in Poland in the 18th century. Released in 2014, its pages are numbered in reverse in the style of Hebrew books. The Academy called it a “remarkably rich panorama of an almost neglected chapter in European history.” Handke, 76, was meanwhile honoured “for an influential work that with linguistic ingenuity has explored the periphery and the specificity of human experience,” the Academy said. Ironically, in 2014 Handke called for the Nobel Literature Prize to be abolished, saying it brought its winner “false canonisation”. The son of a German soldier he only met in adulthood, Handke “has established himself as one of the most influential writers in Europe after the Second World War,” the Academy said. Handke also stoked controversy

when he attended former Serbian president Slobodan Milosevic’s funeral in 2006, and expressed sympathy for the Serbs in the 1990s Yugoslav wars. His works are filled with a strong desire to discover and to make his discoveries come to life by finding new literary expressions for them, it added. Notable works include “Short Letter, Long Farewell”, the poetry collection “The Innerworld of the Outerworld of the Innerworld” and “A Sorrow Beyond Dreams” about his mother, who killed herself in 1971. He has also described Thomas Mann, a giant of German literature and a 1929 Nobel laureate, as a “terribly bad writer” churning out “condescending, snotty-nosed prose”. Tokarczuk and Handke each take home a cheque worth nine million kronor ($912,000, 828,000 euros). Tokarczuk becomes just the 15th woman to have won the prestigious distinction, out of 116 literature laureates honoured since 1901. Dating back to 1786, the Swedish Academy is at pains to repair its reputation after a devastating scandal

that saw Frenchman Jean-Claude Arnault, who has close ties to the Academy, jailed for rape in 2018. The Academy was torn apart by a deep rift between members over how to manage their ties to him. The dispute exposed scheming, conflicts of interest, harassment and a culture of silence among its 18 members, long esteemed as the country’s guardians of culture. The revelations shook Sweden, a

Lutheran nation that prides itself on transparency and consensual democracy and is intolerant of inequality. Arnault is married to Katarina Frostenson, a member of the Academy who later resigned over the scandal at the height of the #MeToo movement against harassment of women. The pair also ran a cultural club in Stockholm that received funding from the body.

Friday, 11 October, 2019


Marching to a different drummer

Discussing hot-button issues

Is there more to the March than meets the eye?

Two issues dominated talks during PM Imran Khan’s China visit, Kashmir and CPEC

At Penpoint


reSiDeNT Xi Jinping told Prime minister imran Khan that China would continue to firmly support Pakistan on issues concerning its core interests and major concerns. The joint press statement issued at the conclusion of the talks mentions that Beijing was paying close attention to the current situation in Kashmir. According to President Xi, the issue was a dispute left over from history and should be resolved on the basis of the UN Charter, relevant UN Security Council resolutions and bilateral agreements. in a message both to india and those who support jihad against india, China maintained that it opposed any unilateral actions that complicated the situation. The joint statement also stressed the need by both the parties to settle disputes and issues in the region through dialogue on the basis of equality and mutual respect. While india is unwilling to talk to Pakistan till the conditions spelt out by it are fulfilled, mr Khan too has rejected talks till india restores Kashmir’s special status. Despite the Xi-modi informal summit due on Friday and Saturday, China did not mince words while lending support to Pakistan’s core interests. Unless the summit leads to a change of heart in india about Kashmir, dialogue between Pakistan and india seems improbable China has been unhappy over slow action on CPeC by Pakistan, partly on account of a group of CPeC skeptics in the government leadership. This explains why it was only a day before the Pakistani delegation proceeded to China that President Arif Alvi hastily promulgated an ordinance for the establishment of the China-Pakistan economic Corridor Authority to oversee the expeditious implementation of CPeC projects. Another ordinance signed belatedly by the President was the Tax Laws Amendment Ordinance 2019 that provides a 23-year income tax holiday and exemptions of sales tax and customs duties for the Gwadar Port and businesses to be set up at the Gwadar Free Zone. it would have been better if instead of promulgating Ordinances in urgency both the statutes were taken to Parliament on time and passed as laws after seeking inputs from the opposition.

Sri Lankan series Pakistan whitewashed in T20Is


He 3rd T20i in Lahore would not have decided anything, for Sri Lanka had already won the series by virtue of having won the first two matches. Pakistan was playing for honour, something enhanced by two factors. First, and probably most important, this was the second tour by a foreign team (Zimbabwe series in 2018), after 10 years when in the last tour, in 2009, the Sri Lankan team was attacked by terrorists in Lahore. Second, it was a home series, before a cricket-hungry home crowd. it must not be forgotten that the full-strength Sri Lankan team is rated eighth in the world, and Pakistan is at the top in T20is. To add insult to injury, Saturday’s defeat took place at the hands of a Sri Lankan team selected to ensure everyone who came on tour, got to play. Yet Pakistan still muffed it. it was the first time they had been set a target which could have been reached without any superhuman feats. it was still too many runs given away by the Pakistani bowlers. The result was expected by those who say that Pakistan’s top two assignments, the head coach’s job and the chief selector’s, should not be combined in a single person. This is especially so where that person, mr misbahul-Haq, was not that long ago captain of the national team. As a matter of fact, mr Haq engaged in some selection choices which did not work, and there seemed to be episodes of giving deadbeats another chance. The two jobs were separate as recently as this summer, during the World Cup, when mr mickey Arthur was head coach and mr inzamam-ul-Haq had been chief selector. That combination didn’t get Pakistan to the semi-finals of the tournament, but they made it further in the tournament than anyone had hoped given the side’s abysmal start. many weaknesses have been exposed, and perhaps the most glaring has been the failure of the captain, Sarfraz Ahmad, to justify his selection as a batsman, especially one with aspirations of batting so high up the order. many changes are needed before the coming T20 world championship. Perhaps it is better to find them out now, rather than to have them exposed cruelly in mid-tournament.

Dedicated to the legacy of the late Hameed Nizami

Arif Nizami Editor Aziz-ud-Din Ahmad

Umar Aziz

Asher John

Joint Editor

Executive Editor

Deputy Editor

Lahore – Ph: 042-36300938, 042-36375965




He million march planned by the Jamiat Ulema-e-islam (Fazlur rehman) on islamabad may seem a bad imitation of the Pakistan Tehreek-e-insaf’s dharna in 2014, but it is occurring within a much more charged regional context. it is not just the post-revocation situation in Held Kashmir or the attempts to have peace talks in Afghanistan, but the fact that the march is taking place in the middle, between the protests in iraq, in which over 100 people have died, and those in Hong Kong, which have lasted much longer, but which have not led to any deaths so far. These protests may have not been taking place back in 2014, but the problems of Kashmir and Afghanistan were present. However, they had not gone to the extent that they both have at present. One of the constant factors between then and now is that domestic politics shapes both events. Of course, the million-march owes something to the experience of the dharna, and that is reflected in the surrounding politics. in 2014, the PmL-N was in power, and the main target of the dharna. The PTi was then demanding the fresh elections that the JUi-F is now demanding. it didn’t work then, because the Parliament went to full term, and only then were elections held, that brought the PTi to power. The PTi and PAT took part in the dharna, with only the PTi succeeding in exploiting the fillip it got then to continue its agitation for the next four years, to the point that it won the 2018 election. in that sense, the present exercise is one of ‘rebranding’ rather than ‘branding’, as the JUi-F has been on the scene longer than the PTi. indeed, the present JUi-F leader inherited his position from his late father, mufti mahmood. mufti mahmood was once NWFP (now KP) Chief minister himself, in 1972-73, while maulana Fazl named Akram Durrani in 2002; he held office until 2007, as the head of an mmA government. The mmA had been the religious parties’ best attempt, when they had united and done their best. That best turned out to be the NWFP government, with few seats elsewhere. One issue seems to be that the advantage the JUi-F has is non-religious. it represents an antiANP vote among certain Pashtun constituencies

AsmA Butt


rime minister imran Khan won hearts acting as Kashmir’s ambassador in the USA during his latest visit. He, indeed, proved himself a true leader of the whole muslim Ummah by holding meetings with over 70 global leaders and briefing all of them about the intense situation in Kashmir. US President Donald Trump and mr Khan met on the sidelines of the UN General Assembly which Khan addressed. in his address, he said that Kashmir is subject to humanitarian problems with millions under siege. He also cautioned that if indian Prime minister Narendra modi would not lift the blockade, the crisis could get much worse. When speaking to all global media, including The Washington Post, The New York Times, and BBC, mr Khan emphasised the unending indian aggression in occupied Kashmir, and the need to bring to bear international. Pressure on india to end it. The 50-minute speech by imran Khan was a package of passion and power where he conveyed a heartfelt message to the world about the image of whole muslim Ummah, which has deteriorated after 9/11. He intelligibly remarked that there is no such thing as “radical islam”. By stating that islam is not radicalised; we are forcing people to be radicalised and he revitalised the true ideology of islam all across the globe. During his speech, he unveiled the concealed face of the rSS, or rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh, by pronouncing that its political philosophy is created by the promotion of the ideology of Hindutva, that promotes the supremacy of a Hindu state and cultivates Hindu values. it is not Karachi – Ph: 021-35381208-9


in KP, and a rightist vote among the Pashtun con- he being prepared to take over the rightist vote? stituencies of Balochistan. Throughout the Punjab, imran Khan has taken over the centre-left vote it won only one seat in 2002, in Gujranwala dis- that used to go to PPP. The maulana has served trict, where its candidate’s main claim to fame was a long apprenticeship, having hosted his first AllParties Conference three decades ago. Unlike that he had once been mullah Omar’s teacher. That episode should serve as reminder that the imran Khan, he has no track record except poliJUi-F has at its core Deobandi ulema. Deobandi tics. The maulana has not won any World Cups, ulema have had a love-hate relationship with Pak- nor did he build a cancer hospital. His private life istan. The old Jamiat Ulema-e-Hind was a Con- has been kept private. even though imran Khan made a rousing gress ally, being opposed to the Partition of india, and the old animosity continued, with mufti mah- speech at the UN, the problems facing Pakistan have not been solved, the mood famously remarkevidence of that being ing that “We were not the recent meeting of part of the sin of the crebusinessmen with the ation of Pakistan.” The COAS, at which they JUH and the Jamaat-e-isvented about their problami also opposed Paklems. The maulana may istan. They both took the Has the Maulana been well be relying on the view that india having brought forward? Is he fact that the establishbeen under muslim rule, ment is at loss for an alcould not be divided. As being prepared to take ternative. That is one the All-india muslim reason why the PmL-N League argued that musover the rightist vote? and the PPP do not want lims were a separate naImran Khan has taken over to support the march, tion and should be even though they agree allowed to form a homethe centre-left vote that with its purpose, that the land of their own in musgovernment must go. lim-majority areas. used to go to PPP At the same time, Another point of seminal there is a general feeling difference is the position. among the opposition While the JUi-F signed that the economic situaoff on the 1973 Constitution makes the governtion, there was (and is) a ment vulnerable, not just group that regarded legisto establishment ire, but to public ill-feeling. lation as the prerogative of the Almighty. This brings up the problem that religious That is a process that does not bode well. The parties have faced, that of not being electable. is Baghdad protests were economic, being about the million-march an attempt at break-out? in jobs and prices. There has been a similar protest the 1990s, the rightist vote coalesced around the in Beirut. The danger sign is that both occurred PmL-N. The problem for those who make for- in the only Arab countries where elections take tunes is the PmL-N is now opposed to the estab- place. This indicates that people are not conlishment, even though the establishment saw the cerned about democracy as such, but only so far right as a natural ally. in the last election, various as it resolves their issues. The maulana has not means were used to wean the rightist vote away shown that he has solutions, but then, imran from mian Nawaz Sharif, but it stayed solid, and Khan had not, beyond calling for an end to corthe Lashkar-e-Taiba (Ahle Hadith), the Tehreek ruption. He has still not shown (neither to the Labbaik Ya rasool Allah of maulana Khadim people nor his supporters) that he has solutions Hussain rizvi (Barelvi) made sure that voters of economic problems. if the maulana does not had a choice of the sect of their preference. The have solutions now, will he ever? more imporreligious vote was represented at the 2014 dharna tantly for him, will the shot-callers, harrowed by by the PAT of Tahirul Qadri. This time, a De- the PTi experience, trust him? obandi party is taking centre stage. M.A. Niazi is a member of the staff. Has the maulana been brought forward? is

The global wake-up call How to work for the Kashmir cause while at the UNGA only dangerous for Kashmiris but credibility by giving rights to the also detrimental to other indian mus- people of the disputed region. On the lims, indian other side, Christians, i n d i a n and Dalits. Prime minT h e ister NarenPrime mindra modi in ister deThe reaction Imran Khan got from his speech to serves a the Indian side was more or less the the General bog ‘thank Assembly you’ for one expected. Ms Vidisha Maitra, touched on creating a First Secretary of the Indian Ministry the spreadstrong case ing threat of for Kashmir of External Affairs, unleashed her terrorism in the UN aggressive response by rubbishing but never General AsMr Khan’s words as ‘brinkmanship’ mentioned sembly. He Kashmir dihas cauand terrorism supporter rather rectly. On tioned the ‘statesmanship’, while exercising the other world that India’s right of reply at the General hand, The its failure to Prime minresolve the Assembly. And, here, she lacks ister said Kashmir nothing but the truth. At all times, that there issue can w e r e result in India has liberated lethal campaign 900,000 inmassive against Pakistan but, formerly, our dian soldiers devastation. Prime Minister, Imran khan, quick in the region The whole policing emphasis of wittedly proved his vocal and bold eight million the speech response to the situation and, Kashmiris. was on the indubitably, a reflection how a imran need to give Khan’s the right of headman should direct a political speech was self-deterissue, like he did for Kashmir within the mination to bounds of the people diplomacy, of Kashmir. yet it According proved to to the be a perturPrime minister, Kashmir was a test for the bation and an ache to modi: the United Nations to refurbish its Prime minister utterly altered the

Islamabad – Ph: 051-2204545




concept of radicalism which gushing out of Kashmir. He has made sense prevail by highlighting that anyone being caged in for a long time, would spring out as a radical; hence the responsibility goes to india for making Kashmiris radical. The speech verified the coverage of Kashmir issue by lightening up New York’s Time Square with ‘Free Kashmir’ slogans. Consequently, a definite victory for the Prime minister, as now for the first time the Kashmir issue had been given a desirable voice. The biggest protest to be recorded in the history of the United Nations took place, in which people from different faiths, including Sikhs, Christians, and muslims had gathered against indian massacres and raised antimodi slogans. The reaction imran Khan got from the indian side was more or less the one expected. ms Vidisha maitra, First Secretary of the indian ministry of external Affairs, unleashed her aggressive response by rubbishing mr Khan’s words as ‘brinkmanship’ and terrorism supporter rather ‘statesmanship’, while exercising india’s right of reply at the General Assembly. And, here, she lacks nothing but the truth. At all times, india has liberated lethal campaign against Pakistan but, formerly, our Prime minister, imran khan, quick wittedly proved his vocal and bold response to the situation and, indubitably, a reflection how a headman should direct a political issue, like he did for Kashmir.


Friday, 11 October, 2019

COMMENT 09 Editor’s mail

Send your letters to: Letters to Editor, Pakistan Today, 4-Shaarey Fatima Jinnah, Lahore, Pakistan. E-mail: Letters should be addressed to Pakistan Today exclusively

Kashmir: A simmering cauldron

Traitors at large? Where treason leads to terrorism

sultAN mehmood hAlI


Tm parliamentarians mohsin Dawar and Ali Wazir, who had been incarcerated for over four months on terrorism charges, were released on bail on September 18 by an anti-terrorism court in Bannu to enable them to attend parliamentary proceedings. The duo had been arrested for their alleged involvement in two separate incidents. One was the deadly may 26 clash between military personnel and Pashtun Tahafuz movement activists at the Kharqamar check post that resulted in 13 deaths, and the other an ieD blast in which four Army personnel were martyred. Their return to Parliament was treated with taunts of treachery and demands of proof of their loyalty to Pakistan by some members in return for the government negotiating with them. While in a democratic dispensation, parliamentarians have the right to differ with each other in matters of opinion or views towards legislation, they should be careful in labelling other members as traitors until proven to be so. Pakistan’s history is unfortunately chequered with instances of hurling accusations of treachery at each other. The litmus test is to let the law of the land decide if a person or a group were conspiring against the state or colluding with the enemy. The reverse is also true, when sometimes politicians against whom solid evidence of treachery and conspiracy against Pakistan is available, other politicians raise a hue and cry to have the charges dropped. readers may recall Sheikh mujibur rahman, the founder of Bangladesh, against whom there was ample proof of his involvement in the Agartala Conspiracy— an attempt to ignite an armed revolution against West Pakistan with india’s help— that would result in east Pakistan’s secession. As soon as his trial commenced, some politicians from West Pakistan objected to the trial, deeming the case a conspiracy of the Pakistan government against the political autonomy movement of east Pakistan. President Ayub Khan, whose hold was weakening, called off the trial in disgust. Later events proved mujib’s deep collusion with india, which led to insurgency, indian invasion, severance of east Pakistan and creation of Bangladesh. Coming back to the case of the parliamentarians in question, mohsin Dawar and Ali Wazir, commenting on their treachery would be unfair since their case is under trial in an antiterrorism court; however, the party they owe allegiance to, leaves a lot to be desired. PTm proclaims itself as a Pashtun rights

activist movement, led by manzoor Pashteen, FATA would be governed, “within a timeframe supported by mohsin Dawar and Ali Wazir. The of two years”, while the region was merged with group is reportedly being supported by the province of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KP). The movement for the protection of the rights Pakhtunkhwa milli Awami Party Senator Usman Kakar and ANP’s Afrasiab Khattak, of the Pashtuns appear to be misplaced. The ethBushra Gohar and PPP Senator Farhatullah nic community resides on both sides of the DuBabar. Khattak and Gohar openly meet the rand Line. Afghans claim that the international Afghan Ambassador, giving rise to speculations border established in 1896 between Sir mortimer Durand, a British diplomat and civil servant, and of their allegiance to Kabul. PTm exploits Pashtun grievances, which the Abdur rahman Khan, the Afghan Amir, was limcommunity suffered because of mushroom ited to 100 years only and ceases to exist. The growth of foreign sponsored terrorism in its area. original document signed by both dignitaries does An in-depth look at the PTm strategy exposes its not mention any limitation on the extent of the true intent of spreading chaos and hatred pf state period for the Durand Line. The Afghans, howinstitutions. PTm follows exactly the same narra- ever lay claim to vast swathes of territory in Paktive as was followed by the terrorist organisation istan occupied by Pashtuns and demand their of Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) to wreak return to form a greater Afghanistan. in Pakistan, havoc and undermine Pakistani law enforcing Pashtuns mostly occupy the north-western part agencies’ efforts in the War on Terror. PTm cannot of the country and have the second largest repredebate its agenda with any knowledgeable or crit- sentation in the Pakistan Army as well. They ical mind, but targets low educated and remotely have ample representation in the provincial as located youth and population through hollow slo- well as the federal governments. Despite bearing gans, high-pitched music, and occasional sad tales the brunt of terror attacks as well as the destructo arouse psychosis. A careful look at the leader- tion and havoc wreaked during the occupation of ship’s activities makes it apparent that Dawar has Afghanistan by the USSr (1979-1989) and later been assigned the responsibility of addressing the the invasion of Afghanistan by NATO following foreign front and tries to instigate the Pashtun Di- 9/11, the Pashtuns, a resilient race have survived aspora while Wazir is holding the Afghan front. and even thrived. There is a possibility that antiHe is in continuous touch with the PTm’s Afghan Pakistan elements in Afghanistan as well certain supporters and before his arrest, had crossed detractors of Pakistan have been the driving force behind the PTm, proTorkham to Afghanistan. viding it financial and manzoor Pashteen, moral support. internathe PTm founder, had tional media too was organised it as a movehighlighting the activiment, initially for a good ties of this manifestation cause. Formerly known of Pashtun nationalism as the mehsud Tahafuz RAW and NDS are trying in Pakistan. Some Pakmovement, it was started gimmicks and tricks in istani politicians also in may 2014 by eight openly subscribe to the students at Gomal Unithis losing battle and the demands of PTm. versity as an initiative for According to media removing landmines resurrection of the PTM reports, the PTm was from Waziristan (espebogey is a last-ditch erected as a bogey by cially mehsud territory) hostile agencies in the and other tribal areas afeffort. Dawar reportedly name of Pashtuns. Three fected by the war in leaders were created North-West Pakistan. plays in the hands of the from local breakaway The brutal slaying of Indian secret service RAW factions of the ANP and Naqeebullah mehsud in FATA activists. Despite Karachi led to protest and its Afghan foreign funding and inrallies in a number of ternational support, cities including Quetta, counterpart, NDS, which PTm was not able to Peshawar, Lahore, Swat, are both hostile agencies bluff the people of erstKarachi, Dera ismail while FATA or Pashtuns Khan, Swabi and Bannu. residing in KP and However, the Balochistan. PTm’s noble cause morDawar, who was phed. The PTm rallies courted in the USA by were now aimed at Hussain Haqqani’s launching protests to highlight the plight of the Pashtun community. SAATH forum and the Stimson Center, has beAround this time, forces inimical to Pakistan, come a pawn in the hands of hostile agencies, started sponsoring PTm as it began chanting slo- mainly operating from Afghanistan. After regans of Yeh jo dehshat gardi hai, iss ke peechhay verses in Afghanistan and the likely peace deal wardi hai (‘Behind this terrorism is the uni- between the USA and the Taliban, the PTm formed army’). PTm also picked up the cudgel leadership finds its space squeezed on both for the recovery of missing persons and reiterated sides of Pak-Afghan border. rAW and NDS are trying gimmicks and its demands, which included the removal of the draconian Frontier Crimes regulation (FCr), the tricks in this losing battle and the resurrection of release of missing persons, stopping the humili- the PTm bogey is a last-ditch effort. Dawar reation of Pashtuns at security checkpoints, and re- portedly plays in the hands of the indian secret moval of landmines in the Federally service rAW and its Afghan counterpart, NDS, Administered Tribal Areas. Perhaps under pres- which are both hostile agencies. readers may sure of the protest rallies, Naqeebullah mehsud’s decide for themselves where the shoe pinches. alleged killer, the SSP of Karachi’s malir DisSultan Mehmood Hali is a retired Group trict, rao Anwar, was arrested for extra-judicial killing. Policies already in the pipeline were ex- Captain and author of the book Defence & pedited. The FATA interim Governance regula- Diplomacy. Currently he is a columnist, analyst tion 2018, replaced the FCr and outlined how and TV talk show host.

rSS-BJP and their offshoots dish out stark lies as historical facts. Gandhi did not care a fig for rSS leaders in his life-time. So was the case with Ambedkar also. Tragically, the BJP-rSS combine is now trying to co-opt Gandhi and pitch him against the Congress. What a wonder it is hard to find rSSs’ founding father, Hedgewar’s mention in the 21 volumes of the writings and speeches of Ambedkar. Both Gandhi and Ambedkar envisioned india as a modern country with due place for minorities. But, Hedgewar thought of Hindu raj, _ rule by Hindu rashtra. Chiplunkar, Tilak and their disciple Hedgewar abhorred Gandhi ‘a Bania leading the freedom movement’. After Tilak’s death, Hedgewar left the Congress-led freedom struggle and began struggle to regain past glory of Aryawarta. Ambedkar explicitly rejected idea of the Hindu rashtra. He stressed, ‘No matter what the Hindus say, Hinduism is a menace to liberty, equality and fraternity. On that account it is incompatible with democracy. Hindu raj must be prevented at any cost.’ V D Savarkar’s essay ‘Hindutva’ published in 1925 is rSS’s bible, is... He called muslims’ hissing Yavana snakes’. But, current rSS’s chief Bhagwat disowned Savarkar to avert ire of foreign journalists he addressed en camera. An immutable lesson of history is that Kashmiris never reconciled with foreign rule. if they could no longer fight an invader with arms, they pelted stones on invaders (mughal). The stone throwers were called dilawars, and the mughal, were addressed as shikas mogle. This Kashmiri-language expression, akin to French C’est dommage (it’s too bad), is spoken when something is lost. The mughal were muslim. Yet, the Kashmiri hated them. Shikas mogle affords a peek into the Kashmiri heart and mind. They cursed foreigners, be they be muslim. Kashmiris hate cheating and consider Akbar ‘the Great’ an epitome of treachery. Akbar invited Kashmir ruler Yusuf Chak (1579 – 1586) for talks. But, treacherously imprisoned and killed him in Bihar state. Be it noted that Akbar had failed to subjugate Kashmir in his earlier two expeditions. After take-over, the mughal lived in a walled nagri (city), later called Sri nagar. The helpless Kashmir used to throw stones at walled city to express their anguish. The general feeling of hatred, kashmiriat, was akin to what ibn-e-Khuldoon calls asabiya (national cohesion). it ran across all sects (shia-sunni), religions, castes and creed. india cheated Sheikh Abdullah and his posterity. indian forces fire pellets (called ‘birdshots’) with pump-action shotguns against unarmed protesters or stone throwers, even women, and children five to eight years’ old. A New York Time report portrays a gruesome picture (“An Epidemic of ‘Dead Eyes’ in Kashmir as India Uses Pellet Guns on Protesters”, New York Times, Aug 28, 2016’) it says the patients have mutilated retinas, severed optic nerves, irises seeping out like puddles of ink’. Doctors call them ‘dead eyes’. A similar report in Washington Post (December 12, 2017) is no less poignant. Let india realise it can’t stifle Kashmiris’ dissent. To stifle the Kashmiri’s fighting spirit, the Dogra (1846-1947) punished even Kashmiri children who played with fork-slings (ghulail in Urdu) and stones (muhammad Yousaf Saraf, Kashmiris Fight for Freedom, vol 1, p 50). Struggle for freedom goes on despite indian forces’ reign of terror (abductions, custodial deaths, rapes, arson, and pellet shelling). ‘The Security Council should make clear that it opposes mr modi’s brutal tightening of india’s control on Kashmir. While mr modi may think he can control this volatile conflict on his own, he almost certainly cannot’ (The UN Can’t Ignore Kashmir Anymore, New York Times, Oct 2, 2019), AMJED JAAVED Rawalpindi

Campaign against democracy THere is a systematic campaign in electronic media by few anchors and selected analysts who blame democracy for ills that afflict this country, thereby negating Quaid’s vision. Pakistan was created through democratic constitutional struggle waged by politicians with calibre of Quaid-e-Azam and many others who rose up through political process and were not implanted by British raj. it were men like Sikandar Hayat, a bureaucrat on payroll of Hm Government, serving as member reserve Bank of india, who was implanted by raj to take over Unionist Party in Punjab after untimely death of Sir Fazal-i-Hussain, a politician in his own right, on 29 June 1936. The British raj excelled in “Divide and rule” through intrigues using paid civil and uniformed bureaucracy as tools. They controlled both Hindus and muslim, through civil bureaucracy run by DC and Commissioners (There is no post of DC etc in UK), a uniformed security service to quell local population through intrigues and use of brute force such as Jallianwala brutality. it is unfortunate that mAJ vision of a modern democratic welfare was deliberately derailed, the Constitution delayed and country became hostage to vested interests. Quaid succeeded in the words of Wolpert - modify the map of world- creating a nation-state; but within a year of his death his vision was derailed. if Quaid’s democratic Pakistan was allowed to function, Kashmir would have been liberated in 1948 or latest by 1962, there would have been no military action in east Pakistan and this country would not have been engaged in proxy war under Zia. Pakistan would have emerged as an economically powerful state, with its people enjoying fruits of development instead of miseries that they face today. MALIK TARIq ALI Lahore

Friday, 11 October, 2019


MErKEl vows to figHt HatE aftEr dEadlY aNti-sEMitic attacK BERLIN



HANCELLOR Angela Merkel vowed there would be “zero tolerance” for hate in Germany after a deadly anti-Semitic gun attack carried out on the holy day of Yom Kippur, as Jews demanded action to protect the community from the rising threat of neo-Nazi violence. Two people were shot dead in the eastern German city of Halle on Wednesday, with a synagogue the prime target. The suspect, 27-year-old German Stephan Balliet, filmed the assault and streamed it online. The victims, reportedly a German man and woman, appeared to be chosen at random when the assailant failed to gain access to the temple he had besieged with gunfire and homemade explosives, as the frightened congregation barricaded itself inside.

The rampage was streamed live for 35 minutes on Twitch, and eventually seen by some 2,200 people, the online platform said, in a chilling reminder of the mosque attack in Christchurch, New Zealand in March which was also played out online in real-time. Police subsequently captured the Halle suspect after a gun battle that left him wounded. Merkel told a trade union convention that the German state and civil society must do everything in their power to stand up to “hate, violence and contempt for human life”. “There must be zero tolerance,” she said. Late Wednesday, Merkel joined a solidarity vigil at a historic Berlin synagogue, and firmly condemned the anti-Semitic rampage. President Frank-Walter Steinmeier, joined by Israeli ambassador Jeremy Issacharoff and local officials, laid flowers Thursday at the Halle temple before meeting with Jewish community repre-

sentatives inside. He later told reporters that the country had a duty to protect Jews on its soil, also in light of its historical guilt for the Holocaust. “It must be clear that the state takes responsibility for Jewish life, for the security of Jewish life in Germany,” he said. But Jewish leaders said that words were not enough, with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu joining calls for German authorities to “act resolutely against the phenomenon of anti-Semitism”. The head of the Central Council of Jews in Germany ripped into the authorities for failing to provide adequate security on the holiest day of the Jewish calendar. “It is scandalous that the synagogue in Halle is not protected by police on a holiday like Yom Kippur,” said Josef Schuster. “This negligence has now been bitterly repaid.” Germany has taken pride in the rebirth of Jewish life since the Nazis’ World

democrat Biden calls for trump's impeachment WASHINGTON: Democratic White House hopeful Joe Biden called Wednesday for Donald Trump’s impeachment, saying the president “betrayed” the United States, but Trump dug in, predicting that the Supreme Court would have to resolve the fight. “To preserve our constitution, our democracy, our basic integrity, he should be impeached,” Biden told supporters at a rally in New Hampshire, adding his voice to that of other Democratic contenders.“He’s shooting holes in the constitution, and we cannot let him get away with it,” added Biden. Meanwhile a poll by Fox News, a TV channel generally viewed as sympathetic to the president, showed that “a new high” of 51 percent of voters want Trump impeached and removed from office. Trump, however, gave no sign of buckling under pressure from the Democratic party probe into his alleged bid to damage Biden by strongarming Ukraine to investigate the former vice president. Having threatened a constitutional crisis by refusing to cooperate with the congressional investigation, Trump predicted that the row would end up “being a big Supreme Court case.” AGENCIES

iN iNdia, woMEN arE wHiPPEd to 'ward off Evil sPirits'

Women and young girls queued up to receive therapeutic lashings during an annual Hindu festival held in southern India. The radical religious ceremony is said to cure illnesses and exorcise evil spirits, RT reported. Ruptly footage shows women kneeling down in a “lashing ground” and having their backs and hands whipped by priests, as part of ‘Vijayadasami’ festivities held in the village of Pavithram Vellalapatti. The participants are seen bowing as they take turns receiving blows from the priests, who are dressed in ceremonial garb. Some are seen flinching as they brace for another lashing. The ritual is supposed to rid women and girls of evil spirits, as well as heal ailments. According to tradition, if a woman doesn’t feel pain, it means she has fallen victim to dark forces. “When the priest lashes the women they won’t feel any pain if they are possessed by evil spirits. Otherwise, it will be painful. The evil spirits after several lashes will run away from the woman’s body,” a local resident told Ruptly. NEWS DESK

gErMaNY sHootiNg livEstrEaMEd dEsPitE Efforts BY tEcH firMs

War II slaughter of six million Jews across Europe. The community has grown to about 225,000 thanks in large part to an influx from the ex-Soviet Union after the fall of the Berlin Wall. In a copy of a 35-minute video obtained by AFP the gunman filmed himself launching into a diatribe against women and Jews and denying the Holocaust, before carrying out the attack. The video’s authenticity has been confirmed by the SITE monitoring group but not by police. The gunman also published an antiSemitic “manifesto” online more than a week ago, according to SITE director Rita Katz, who said the document showed pictures of the weapons and ammunition he used. In the video, he was seen trying to force open the synagogue door before shooting dead a female passer-by.

BERLIN: Just weeks after a broad effort announced by tech platforms to curb the spread of violent content, a video of Wednesday’s deadly shooting in the German city of Halle was posted online, where it was seen by some 2,200 people. The gunman posted a video of the attack on the Twitch livestream gaming platform owned by Amazon, the company acknowledged. The video of the shooting at a synagogue and a Turkish restaurant included a “manifesto” with racist and anti-Semitic commentary. “Twitch has a zero-tolerance policy against hateful conduct, and any act of violence is taken extremely seriously,” a Twitch spokesperson said. “We worked with urgency to remove this content and will permanently suspend any accounts found to be posting or reposting content of this abhorrent act.” AGENCIES

Ecuador's Moreno seeks talks after week of fuel hike protests QUITO AGENCIES

Ecuador’s President Lenin Moreno will Thursday try to resume dialogue with the indigenous community after a week of protests against fuel price hikes which have escalated into violent clashes and disrupted the country’s oil output. “Without a doubt, this is going to be solved very soon,” an optimistic Moreno said in a video broadcast on state television following clashes Wednesday between protestors and security forces in Quito which left several injured. Moreno moved the seat of government to the southwest port city of Guayaquil on

Monday following violent protests in the capital of the small South American country. He returned briefly to Quito Wednesday as thousands of people representing indigenous groups, farmers, students and labor unions marched in the city, with clashes erupting between protestors and police. The protesters are demanding that Moreno reinstate fuel subsidies that were rescinded last week after $4.2 billion in loans was agreed with the IMF. “I came to Quito to reach out and to announce that we already have good results as regards dialogue,” Moreno said, before heading back to Guayaquil in the evening. Contacts have been established between the government and the demonstrators, mediated by the United Nations and the Catholic Church. But despite the president’s optimism, indigenous leader Salvador Quishpe said the “demonstration is ongoing, it has not ended.” And Jaime Vargas, one of the leaders of the powerful indigenous umbrella organization CONAIE, was reluctant to talk to a “gov-

ernment that has succumbed to pressure from the International Monetary Fund.” Discussions with CONAIE leaders also took place in Guayaquil. “There is dialogue with the brother indigenous peoples who unfortunately have needs,” Moreno said of the groups which make up a quarter of the population of the country’s 17.3 million people. He also offered to free up resources for those hit hard by the rise in fuel prices. The demonstrations broke out after increases of up to 120 percent in fuel prices came into force on October 3. They have left one civilian dead and 122 people injured, with 766 detained, according to the latest figures from the authorities and the Red Cross. The unrest has threatened to inflict wider damage on an already weakened economy. The energy ministry announced Wednesday it was shutting down one of the country’s two domestic oil pipelines, effectively suspending two-thirds of its distribution of crude.

Social networks face quandary on politics in misinformation fight NEW YORK AGENCIES

As social media firms ramp up their fight against misinformation, politicians have been largely left exempt. To some, that’s a huge problem. Facebook, Twitter and other social media platforms have decided to allow politicians including President Donald Trump extra leeway to their rules, seeking to avoid stifling political debate and leaving “newsworthy” content online. But Trump’s efforts to push falsehoods and conspiracy theories have prompted calls for platforms to rethink those guidelines to prevent the president and others from spreading false and misleading information. Democratic presidential hopeful Joe Biden recently asked Facebook to take down “debunked” claims in a Trump ad on the leading social network, only to be rebuffed. In a response to Biden, Facebook said statements by politicians, even if false, are “considered direct speech and ineligible for our third-party fact checking program.” Senator and presidential candidate Kamala Harris meanwhile called on Twitter to ban Trump after the president violated the platform’s rules by accusing his critics of “treason” and warning that an attempt to impeach him amounted to a “coup.” The candidates’ demands are typical of the conundrum social media firms face as they seek to remain open for public debate while curbing “hate speech,” abusive conduct and patently false claims from politicians. Facebook and Twitter have both steered away from removing “newsworthy” content which may include false or misleading comments from political leaders. YouTube offers a similar exemption. This policy “seems like a troubling compromise because it’s an invitation to political actors to say whatever they think is expedient whether it’s true or not,” said Paul Barrett, deputy director of the Stern Center for Business and Human Rights at New York University and author of a report on “Disinformation and the 2020 Election.” Barrett’s report recommends that social networks take down “provably false” information, though he acknowledged that would leave big loopholes for politicians stretching the truth. The report noted that a majority of deliberately deceptive or false information shared on

social media comes not from Russia or other foreign sources but from within the United States, making it more complicated to take down. “It’s a real conundrum. I don’t think there’s an easy answer,” Barrett said. Facebook vice president Nick Clegg said last month the social network would treat speech from politicians “as newsworthy content that should, as a general rule, be seen and heard.” Gaurav Laroia of the watchdog group Free Press said exceptions allowed by Facebook means the company “is allowing its platform to be a vector for misinformation in the lead-up to the 2020 election.” Facebook’s ad policies leave a gaping loophole for Trump, the biggest political ad spender on the platform, as he faces a congressional impeachment inquiry, according to Free Press. Senator Elizabeth Warren, another presidential candidate, accused Facebook of buckling to pressure from the White House on political misinformation. “Trump and (Facebook CEO Mark) Zuckerberg met at the White House two weeks ago. What did they talk about?” Warren tweeted. “Facebook is now okay with running political ads with known lies.” Facebook maintains it has not changed its stand but clarified a policy of steering clear of the touchy subject of moderating political speech. “Our approach is grounded in Facebook’s fundamental belief in free expression, respect for the democratic process, and the belief that, in mature democracies with a free press, political speech is already arguably the most scrutinized speech there is,” Facebook public policy director Katie Harbath said.


Married priests question raises fears of church split ROME: An idea to fill empty pulpits in remote locations by allowing married men to become priests is bitterly dividing a Vatican assembly, with critics warning the emotive issue could fracture the Catholic Church. The hot-button topic of whether an exception can be made to the centuries-old custom of celibacy in places where there is a shortage of priests has dominated the start of the three-week “synod” on the PanAmazonian region. Austro-Brazilian bishop Erwin Krautler said Wednesday he estimated some two-thirds of the bishops in the region support the idea of “viri probati” (married “men of proven virtue”) as candidates for priesthood. “There is no other option, indigenous peoples are clearly asking for it,” the former bishop of Xingu in Brazil told journalists. Pope Francis has suggested those at the assembly to consider the possibility of ordaining married men for remote locations, such as the Amazon or the Pacific Islands, where communities seldom have Mass due to a lack of priests. Only priests can consecrate the Eucharist, which is a key part of Catholic Mass. Krautler and other supporters of the idea say the Eucharist is more important than celibacy, which is not a Church law and only dates back to the 11th century. “Just as the magnificent jaguar faces exile from its habitat, the ecclesiastical ecosystem no longer manages to arouse and support enough priestly and religious vocations,” a person who attended the synod debates cited an unnamed Spanish-language bishop as saying. “We are witnessing a sort of deforestation of Catholic culture,” he added. The synod’s chair, Brazilian Cardinal Claudio Hummes, said Monday the Church needed to “define new paths for the future” in response to the calls not only for married priests but also for suitable ministries for women in the region. AGENCIES

Friday, 11 October, 2019


SBP reserves increase $16m to stand at $7.75bn The foreign exchange reserves held by the central bank inched up by 0.21pc on a weekly basis, according to data released by the State Bank of Pakistan (SBP) on Thursday. On October 4, the foreign currency reserves held by the SBP were recorded at $7,757.6 million, up $16 million compared with $7,741.6 million in the previous week. The report cited no reason for the increase, which had fallen below the $8 billion mark. The overall liquid foreign currency reserves held by the country, including net reserves held by banks other than the SBP, stood at $14,992.9 million. Net reserves held by banks amounted to $7,235.3 million. BUSINESS DESK


ISLAMABAD: Special Communications Organization (SCO) and Ufone signed a Bilateral Roaming Services Agreement at PTCL headquarters. The ceremony was attended by PTA Chairman Maj Gen (r) Amir Azeem Bajwa, SCO Director General Maj Gen Ali Farhan and PTCL President & CEO Rashid Khan. p r E S S r E L E A S E

PSM loSSES incrEaSE By rS48Bn in laSt 13 MonthS ISLAMABAD



ESPITE a request from the Pakistan Steel Mills (PSM) board of directors, the government has so far failed to appoint a permanent chief executive officer (CEO) and a chief financial officer (CFO) for the state-owned entity. According to sources privy to the matter, owing to the absence of regular officials at the PSM, the mill has witnessed a loss of around Rs48 billion in the last 13 months (from August 2018 till September 2019). They said that the post of CEO has been lying vacant since April 2016, while the position of CFO has been vacant since January 2013. "The estimated losses of PSM currently stand at Rs508 billion," sources said. "Since the accounts of PSM were not audited from July 2015 till September 2019, the said figures are provisional/estimated losses." Sources found it strange that the PSM accounts remain unaudited and that there was no

DESPITE REQUESTS, GOVT YET TO APPOINT PERMANENT CEO, CFO FOR THE STATE-OWNED ENTITY official clear figure available to determine the losses incurred by of PSM. "PSM was deliberately destroyed by the successive governments from 2005 to 2018 and the present government has maintained the status quo by not initiating measures required to investigate the factors behind the losses," sources maintained. Pakistan Steel Mills Corporation (PSMC) Stakeholders Group recently wrote a letter to the Senate's Standing Committee on Industries & Production chairman, urging him to order the initiation of an inquiry against those creating hurdles in the appointment of regular CEO and CFO. “How many corruption cases were investi-

Steps being taken to curtail smuggling from Afghanistan, Senate panel told

KARACHI: Meezan Bank Deputy CEO Ariful Islam and Hyundai Nishat Motor (Pvt) Ltd CEO Mian Hassan Mansha shake hands after singing a memorandum of understanding for ‘Priority Financing of Hyundai Commercial Vehicles’. p r E S S r E L E A S E


KARACHI: Marine Group Managing Director Aasim Siddiqui and CMA CGM Group’s Middle East & Indian Subcontinent Director Romain Vigneaux lay the foundation of their partnership at the Wazir Mansion Railway Station. p r E S S r E L E A S E

KARACHI: Maritime Affairs Minister Ali Zaidi and Shell Pakistan Limited (SPL) Managing Director Haroon Rashid inaugurate new aluminum tank lorries for SPL’s dedicated Haulier fleet. p r E S S r E L E A S E

The Federal Board of Revenue (FBR) on Thursday admitted that a large number of LED TVs were still being smuggled into Pakistan through the Afghan Transit Trade system. Discussing the issue pertaining to the smuggling of LED TVs during a meeting of Senate's Standing Committee on Finance, Revenue and Economic Affairs, the FBR officials said that steps were being taken to curtail smuggling activities from Afghanistan. Earlier, Senator Shibli Faraz had pointed out that electronic items, especially the LED TVs, were being smuggled into Pakistan unabated. He accused the FBR officials of their involvement in this illegal trade. The matter was deferred due to the absence of the FBR chairman. Meanwhile, the standing committee, chaired by Senator Farooq Hamid Naek, passed the Companies Act, 2019, unanimously. Other bills, including the Maternity and Paternity Bill, 2018, and the Constitution Amendment Act, 2019, were deferred due to absence of the movers. During the meeting, the FBR officials informed that it had launched a comprehensive mobile app for filing of salaried and nonsalaried returns along with a facility for e-registration of new taxpayers. "The FBR had launched the revised ver-

sion of its app 'Tax Asaan', which was operational since September 16th with its scope limited to the salary income of an individual. The new version is now covering all incomes and assets of individuals — salaried and non-individuals," an FBR official told Senate panel. FBR Policy Member Dr Hamid Ateeq Sarwar said that within 24 days of its launch, the mobile app for simplified return had received 50,000 salary returns digitally. "Until Wednesday, on Google's official Android operating system, there were over 20,000 downloads of the app and 6,000 plus downloads on Apple’s iOS mobile operating system," he informed. In terms of submission of salary return, he said as many as 1,753 draft returns and 98 returns had been submitted online so far through the app. Discussing the imposition of customs' duty on mobile phones, the committee lauded FBR for collecting Rs7 billion under this head. The FBR officials asserted that the imposition of duty will discourage smuggling, adding that "no matter how the device is procured, the user would be taxed once a sim is inserted". "Foreigners will be exempted for 60 days after which they will have to pay tax." The meeting was attended by Senators Dr Ghous Muhammad Khan Niazi, Syed Shibli Faraz, Dilawar Khan, Anwarul Haq Kakar, Mir Kabir Muhammad Ahmed Shahi and senior officers from the ministries of finance, maritime affairs and FBR.

gated by the Ministry of Industries and how many of them were forwarded to the National Accountability Bureau (NAB) or the Federal Investigation Agency (FIA)?” the PSMC Stakeholders Group had asked. “Who is responsible of the administrative and financial disaster of the mill?” Taking to this scribe, PSMC Stakeholders Group Convener Mumrez Khan said the the MoI&P has so far appointed “blue-eyed officials” at the top positions and that these “favourite people were clueless about the functions of this important industry”. He said the performance of these officials was neither monitored nor evaluated by the appointing authority. “We believe that those who damaged the state-owned entity should be investigated by Auditor General of Pakistan (AGP) or NAB,” he said. "We are always available to assist the government for revival of the ailing PSM.” Meanwhile, incumbent PSM chief and board chairman Aamir Mumtaz told this scribe that the government was hiring a regular CEO very soon and an advertisement in this regard would bepublished in the near future.

‘Efforts underway to automate banking sector’ BUSINESS DESK The State Bank of Pakistan (SBP) Governor Dr Reza Baqir on Thursday said that the administration is striving hard to automate the banking sector, a private media outlet reported. Dr Reza Baqir, while addressing a seminar regarding economic challenges, announced that the entire system is being digitised so that the consumers could make payments through their mobile phones. "We plan to give incentives on money that is deposited in the savings' accounts as well as national savings. I appeal to all citizens to show patience as our revenue is gradually increasing and that the country is witnessing a reduction in current account deficit.” Baqir said that the Gross Domestic Product (GDP) rate had hiked owing to an increase in consumption value in the past, adding that China raised its growth rate by increasing its capital. "The volume of the country’s exports is increasing and it is the task of the private sector to raise it," he stated. The central bank governor said that the people are facing difficulties due to the existence of illegal means to transfer money. Baqir admitted that the central bank has received complaints regarding additional receivings in the exchange rate from different banks. He said that such steps are completely unlawful and the authorities were looking into them on a serious note. Baqir reiterated that tough decisions were needed to handle the economic situation, as foreign reserves were consistently dropping. He was of the view that the increase in exports would raise the production and employment rate of the country. The governor said that the SBP steps helped expand local manufacturing sectors of furniture, shoes and other products. He added that the prices of consumers' products decrease when the rates of imported items were hiked. He praised Federal Board of Revenue (FBR) Chairman Shabbar Zaidi for showing an increase in the overall revenue collection. The governor urged the people to spot non-filers as the tax rate would be reduced after the increase in the number of taxpayers.

NPCC follows merit order for security, integration of system BUSNIESS DESK The National Transmission and Despatch Company (NTDC) spokesman has said that NTDC always follow the merit order for safety, security & integration of system NEPRA Gird Code has empowered the System Operator to run the system stable in order to transmit smooth and quality power supply without interruption to the consumers across the country. However, in certain instances the System Operator is constrained to operate some of the power plants, which may be lower at the merit order, but are essen-

tially required to maintenance the system stability. This is precisely as per the provision of grid code. The spokesman said that it needs to be appreciated that power generated at any voltage level is ultimately delivered at 132 kV level. So from the system stability point of view, the plant connected at 132 kV level helps the system operator to feed the load directly and maintain the system stability. In the month of Aug 2019, these RFO based power plants (Nishat Power, Nishat Chunian, Kohinor, PAK Gen, Lalpir, Attock Gen, Liberty Tech Jamshoro, ATLAS and HUBCO NAROWAL which

merely constituted 3.6 % of total mix generation). The FO plants named in reference news story are generally located around Lahore, Multan and Muzaffargarh areas. Had NPCC not operated these plant the area could have faced serious voltage issues as the system is designed in such a way. It is highlighted that the power system worldwide is planned in such a way that the generation is preferably provided in the load centers at low transmission levels, in this way higher voltage infrastructure is saved. In NPCC system the FO plants have connected at 132 kV level to evacuate the power and transmit to

load canters located in the close vicinity. The spokesman asserted that if these plants are not operated, then the power flow has to be ensured from other plants in those specific areas which result in overloading of transmission assets. It is anticipated that, in the absence of these plant, the areas might have seen load shedding of about 7 hours in Pattoki, Chunian, Sunder Industrial estate, Raiwind and Kasur, about 3 hours in Multan, Muzaffargarh and Bahawalpur region, about half an hour in Islamabad and Rawalpindi, about 2 hours in Faisalabad, about 2 hours in Lahore Ravi areas and 4

hours in Pasrur, Narowal and 1 hour in HESCO and Jamshoro. NTDC spokesman updated that owing to load restrictions on the transmission assets, to save them from overloading and resultant damage, which might result in loss of billions in terms of replacement required and time consumed in repair or replacement. Nevertheless, as cheaper source of power are now being injected in the system. NPCC in consultation with rest of the departments of NTDC will work out some system modifications to ensure that reliance on RFO plants for system stability is gradually reduced.

Friday, 11 October, 2019

12 BUSINESS MaRket DailY

Bulls dominate as KSE100 surges 503 points KARACHI: Bulls dominated the Pakistan Stock Exchange (PSX) on Thursday, as the indices drove north for almost the entire session, helping the KSE-100 Index cross the 34,000 mark barrier. Foreign investors were net sellers once again on Wednesday with a net outflow of $2.56 million. On the economic front, State Bank of Pakistan Governor Reza Baqir, during an interactive session with foreign investors, said that reforms undertaken by the central bank to address the country's macroeconomic challenges were now bearing fruit, as the external sector was gradually becoming visible, current account deficit was declining, exports were improving and non-borrowed foreign exchange reserves were rising. The KSE-100 Index marked its intraday high of 34,047.11 during the final hours of the trading session. It ended higher by 503.96 points at 34,027.70. The KMI-30 Index appreciated by 985.61 points or 1.84pc to settle at 54,473.58, while the KSE All Share Index gained 1.60pc, ending at 24,574.58. The advancers to decliners ratio stood at 208 to 119. The overall market volumes surged from 237.68 million in the previous session to 261.56 million. Lotte Chemical Pakistan Limited (LOTCHEM +3.42pc) turned out to be the volume leader, followed by Pakistan International Bulk Terminal Limited (PIBTL +4.16pc) and KElectric Limited (KEL +3.72pc). The scripts had exchanged 26.80 million shares, 17.27 million shares and 16.51 million shares respectively. Sectors that drove the benchmark KSE-100 Index toward the north included banking (+115.37 points), oil and gas exploration (+74.18 points), cement (+58.15 points) and power generation and distribution (+39.72 points). Among the companies, Lucky Cement Limited (LUCK +40.94 points), United Bank Limited (UBL +31.55 points) and Habib Bank Limited (HBL +31.40 points) added maximum points to the index. The tobacco sector gained 3.71pc in its cumulative market capitalization. Pakistan Tobacco Company Limited (PAKT) was up by 4.90pc, while Khyber Tobacco Company Limited registered a minor gain of 0.86pc. STAFF rEpOrT

EU removes UaE, Switzerland from tax haven lists LUXEMBOURG: European Union finance ministers agreed to remove the United Arab Emirates (UAE) and Switzerland from the bloc’s lists of countries deemed to be acting as tax havens, according to a statement on Thursday. At a meeting in Luxembourg, ministers decided to drop UAE from the EU blacklist that covers jurisdictions that have failed to cooperate with the EU on tax matters. The Marshall Islands has also been removed from that list, which still includes nine extra-EU jurisdictions – mostly Pacific islands with little financial relation with the EU. Major economic partner Switzerland was removed from the gray list covering countries that have committed to change their tax rules to make them compliant with EU standards. It has delivered on its commitments, the document said, and therefore is no longer listed. AGENCIES

Moody's cuts growth forecast for india to 5.8pc NEW DELHI: Moody’s Investors Service on Thursday cut its growth forecast for India for the fiscal year that began in April to 5.8pc from 6.2pc and said a weaker growth outlook will dampen the prospects for fiscal consolidation. The ratings agency had lowered India’s growth forecast to 6.2pc from 6.8pc in August. India’s growth fell to a six-year low of 5pc in the April-June quarter led by weak demand for consumer products and stress in the financial sector, prompting the central bank to cut its 2019-20 growth forecast to 6.1pc last week from 6.9pc. Moody’s forecast Asia’s thirdlargest economy would grow 6.6pc in fiscal 2020/21 starting next April. “Compared with only two years ago, the probability of sustained real GDP growth at or above 8pc has significantly diminished,” the global ratings agency said in a note. The agency expects the government to run a fiscal deficit equivalent to 3.7pc of gross domestic product this fiscal year, compared with the government’s target of 3.3pc, following New Delhi’s decision to cut the corporate tax rate, which will cost about 1.5 trillion rupees in tax revenues. It also said that a long period of weak growth will hamper the government’s fiscal consolidation plans. AGENCIES




RIME Minister Imran Khan said on Thursday that economic stability was the top most priority of his government, as it would create opportunities for livelihood, increase trust among foreign investors and enable local industries to flourish. The prime minister was chairing a special meeting of his economic team at his Bani Gala residence in Islamabad to discuss economic reforms and strategies to revive the industrial sector. Federal ministers Makhdoom Khusro

Bukhtar, Omar Ayub, Hammad Azhar and Mohammad Mian Soomro; advisers Dr Abdul Hafeez Shaikh, Abdul Razzak Dawood, Dr Ishrat Hussain; special assistants Dr Firdous Ashiq Awan and Yousaf Baig Mirza; Federal Board of Revenue Chairman Shabbar Zaidi, former finance minister Shaukat Tareen; and other officials attended the meeting. The participants of the meeting discussed various recommendations about development of the small and medium enterprises (SMEs) sector, rehabilitation of sick industrial units and provision of subsidies to the construction sector. During the meeting, the premier was apprised that measures could be taken on an immediate basis to restore 687 sick units. As per a briefing given to the meeting, the rehabilitation of the targeted units could be carried out with the help of a public-private partnership formula. Prime Minister Imran directed the concerned quarters to complete the required administrative reforms and laws within 60 days to rehabilitate the struggling units under a comprehensive plan.

AEDB approves renewable energy policy draft ISLAMABAD STAFF rEpOrT

The Alternative Energy Development Board (AEDB) has unanimously approved the draft Alternative Renewable Energy (ARE) Policy 2019. The 46th board meeting of the AEDB was held under the chairmanship of Energy (Power Division) Minister Omar Ayub Khan on Thursday. Power Division Secretary Irfan Ali and all the provincial energy secretaries were present on the occasion. The AEDB Board deliberated upon the draft ARE Policy 2019, which was prepared by the board in consultation with the public and private sector

stakeholders, including provincial government agencies. The representatives of provincial governments and other board members provided their inputs on the ARE Policy 2019 draft. A consensus was developed on several inputs and suggestions given by the provincial representatives aimed towards improving the policy framework. The AEDB chairman/energy minister stated that the policy aims to create a conducive environment, supported by a robust framework, for sustainable growth of the ARE sector in Pakistan. He said the policy would also ensure that the share of renewable energy in the energy

mix is increased so that the strategic objectives of energy security, cheaper power generation and environmental protection could be achieved. The minister further stated that the policy framework has an all-inclusive approach and stipulates an active role and participation of provincial governments at all stages of the ARE developments. Power Secretary Irfan Ali apprised the meeting that for the first time “an ambitious yet workable policy has been attempted to tap the indigenous resources of the country”. He said that Provincial participation has been increased in the new draft of renewable energy.

Germany to grant €23.4m for social sector reforms in Pakistan BUSINESS DESK Germany will provide a technical grant of 23.4 million euros (Rs3.9 billion) to Pakistan in order to help the latter implement social sector reforms. In this regard, a Technical Cooperation Agreement was signed on Thursday between Economic Affairs Division Secretary Noor Ahmed and Ambassador of Germany to Pakistan Bernhard Stephan Schlagheck under the Pakistan-Germany Development Programme. Economic Affairs Minister Hammad Azhar was also present on the occasion. As per a statement issued by the division, the technical assistance would be extended to projects related to social protection, technical and vocational education, local governance and labour standards in Pakistan's textile industry.

"These schemes are in line with the priority areas of the government and are geared towards impacting the lives of the common people," it added. Development cooperation between Pakistan and Germany dates back to 1961, with the funding volume to date totalling more than €3 billion. The contracting parties lauded the cordial relations between the two countries and looked forward to strengthening their cooperation in diverse sectors. Both sides stressed the need for active collaborations to ensure finalisation of project objectives so that concerns of the end beneficiaries could be addressed. Economic Affairs Minister Hammad Azhar on the occasion thanked the German government for the grant assistance, especially in priority areas highlighted by Pakistan.

The participants were told that the SMEs sector was facing various challenges including a lack of investment, sophisticated technology, skilled labour, laws, reforms in the Small Medium Enterprises Development Authority (SMEDA), and a lack of research. The PM directed the officials to involve the private sector for the development of the SMEs sector. He also issued directions for the ease of doing business in the country and prioritising local small units. He asked officials to submit a comprehensive action plan for the development of the sector, with time-bound targets. During the meeting, the PM announced that tax incentives will be offered to relevant industries to facilitate the construction sector. He directed the economic adviser to devise a strategy in coordination with the FBR, Naya Pakistan Housing Authority and the provincial governments in this regard and submit the report by next week. He also stressed the need to increase inter-ministerial coordination through frequent meetings.

Remittances drop $79m in three months FY20 KARACHI: The State Bank of Pakistan (SBP) has said that the overseas Pakistani workers remitted $5,478.11 million in the first three months (July to September) of fiscal year 2019-20 (FY20), compared with $5,557.61 million received during the same period of the preceding year. During September 2019, the inflow of workers remittances amounted to $1,747.95 million, which is 3.4pc higher than August 2019 and 17.6pc higher than September 2018. The country-wise details for the month of September 2019 show that inflows from Saudi Arabia, UAE, USA, UK, GCC countries (Bahrain, Kuwait, Qatar and Oman) and EU countries amounted to $420.88 million, $363.34 million, $281.91 million, $264.89 million, $162.77 million and $53.20 million respectively, compared with the inflow of $360.16 million, $308.13 million, $240.49 million, $216.75 million, $134.49 million and $41.14 million respectively in September 2018. Remittances received from Malaysia, Norway, Switzerland, Australia, Canada, Japan and other countries during September 2019 amounted to $200.95 million together as against $185.31 million received in September 2018. ppI

UK-Pak business conference to be held in December RAWALPINDI: Rawalpindi Chamber of Commerce and Industry (RCCI) President Saboor Malik said on Thursday that the chamber would organise a UK-Pakistan "business opportunities conference" in Birmingham, United Kingdom, on December 10th. Talking to APP, he said the conference would provide an ideal platform for Pakistani business companies to identify and engage in joint ventures with their British counterparts. "Saboor said a large number of companies have submitted applications with the RCCI in this regard." He informed that 50 companies had participated in the Pak-UK business conference which was held under the auspices of RCCI last year. App

What makes TCL the best-selling smart TV brand in Pakistan? LAHORE TAIMOOr HASSAN

Chinese products are flooding the Pakistani market and outperforming their well-established rivals. One of these brands is TCL Electronics, which has knocked out its competitors to become the market leader in the smart television (TV) segment in Pakistan. Smart TVs, also called connected TVs (CTV), are traditional televisions with integrated internet, which allow users to stream music and videos, view photos and browse the internet on the television.

Citing data from Growth from Knowledge (GfK), Germany’s largest and world’s fourth largest market research firm, TCL had announced on Wednesday that it had reached a market share of 17 per cent in terms of sales value of smart TVs for July 2019, which was the highest in the market, putting it in the first spot in the smart televisions segment. “This comes on the back of results from March 2019, where the company had held a 14.5 per cent share. The performance for July 2019 follows on from the company’s dominating share in the smart TV market in the country where it has consistently been ranked the top

player for the past two years, with a market share of more than 32 per cent for the year 2019 to date,” TCL added. Electronics traders in Lahore's Abid Market confirmed to Profit that TCL is in fact the most sold smart television brand. Though all the brands have a market, when it comes to smart televisions, TCL leaves others behind. And why TCL has the lion’s share in the market, tells a trader, is because of the attractive pricing of its products which puts it in the purchasing range of all sorts of consumers. Competitive prices is how Chinese products knock others out of the market.

But there are other Chinese television brands that TCL has knocked out by providing superior quality and great aftermarket service. “TCL is ahead of even other Chinese brands, even though other brands also have low prices,” a trader told Profit. “Here’s why it is sold the most: the price is affordable, quality is very good, their after-sale service is very good. They have less warranty though. They have panel warranty of one year and a warranty of parts for one year. But while other brands offer longer warranty periods, we have received complaints of problems in other TV brands but not TCL. And if ever

an issue arose and customer launched complaint, let’s say in the morning, by evening TCL fixed the issue,” a trader summed it up. TCL Pakistan General Manager Sunny Yang said that Pakistan has always been a key strategic market for TCL in their overall global strategy and they will continue bringing consumers an outstanding television viewing experience. “We look forward to building on our success and delivering even more premium quality products in televisions as well as our upcoming product lines like air conditioners to consumers here,” TCL Pakistan Marketing Manager Majid Niazi added.


Tell us a little about your partnership with JPP and what do you think about Pakistan’s justice system? It has been great working with Justice Project Pakistan as a partner and especially coming along with an understanding of what they do in terms of their work and what they represent as an organization. I am working with them under the perspective of bringing an art exhibition together. The partnership has been quite interesting in terms of what art does and what JPP does and how does that come together? I feel the complexities of the justice system are always very difficult for a common man to understand or relate to. I feel JPP is trying to bridge that gap between the justice system and the complexity that it comes with and that is very similar to what I do under House Ltd. So, I expect that partnership with JPP shall be very interesting because we’ve talked about themes, about ideas and how performance art can be used as a vessel to represent themes that JPP works on.



You’ve worked both in Pakistan and abroad what difference do you feel in the sense of how art is valued here and abroad? I would talk about this in terms of two perspectives. One is as an artist and the other as a viewer. As a performance artist, I’ve experienced that there was initially not much of an understanding of the medium in Pakistan. And I also feel that in terms of the value of the medium, since a lot of the work that is being produced in Pakistan has an element of becoming a product that you can actually monetize on or you can buy or sell. But performance art is something that cannot take the shape of a product because it’s an experience. It happens for a short period of time and then it’s over. So, it’s very ephemeral in that sense. In the international art market, artists are delving with themes that cannot be put together in a form package that you can buy or sell. It’s very important to realize that the value of art is beyond buying or selling it, but also, to experience it. As a viewer, I really enjoy some of the artists’ work in Pakistan but I also feel like there is a lot of potential in young artists, the work that they’re doing where they’re not allowing the market or the business to affect their process. I feel it is very important for an artist to liberate themselves from the fear of value is equal to money because we’re living in an age where innovative ideas are of great significance? I definitely feel that with the wake of the internet, a lot of artists are now traveling abroad and are coming back and just sort of exchange that is happening. Also, in Pakistan, a lot of times we look at something from an exotic lens or we try to mimic or reproduce what’s being done abroad. I don’t really think that is of value. But at the same time, I definitely see that contemporary artists from my generation are trying to create a more balanced or a more contextualized relationship with what’s happening in Pakistan and what’s happening outside Pakistan.

iN coNversatioN with

Natasha Jozi

By Rohama Riaz Natasha Jozi- whenever the name pops up, only one word comes to our mind and that is art or to be more precise, performing art. She is a visual thinker, an artist and also a writer interested in the performative self, collective experience, and Eastern philosophy. Talking about her vast experiences, she has performed and exhibited her work at International Festival of Video Art 2014 (Venice), MagnanMetz 2014 (NYC), Index Art Center 2014 (NJ), PPL 2013 (NYC), DCCA 2013 (Delaware), LAABF 2013 (NYC), La MaMa 2013 (NYC). In 2017 Jozi founded “House”- an independent initiative that works towards generating discourse around performance art in Pakistan. We recently came to know that Natasha is curating the show ‘We’ve Been Waiting For You’ hosted by Justice Project Pakistan (working to improve the justice system of Pakistan), happening on 10th of October (“The World Day against Death Penalty”) at Bari Studio and our intriguing self wanted to dig into more details and here is what she had to share about her showcase.


What do you think about Justice Project Pakistan? I was not familiar with JPP before I was contacted by JPP for this particular project. Once I got to know about their work, I met the team and I saw the projects that they have been doing in the past. I was sort of intrigued, and a little amazed to see a human rights organization that is so much invested in the people and what is happening in their lives. I feel that JPP is trying to bring awareness and spark conversations that are around the justice system. I feel why such organizations are so much needed is that they try to create a more humanize and understandable way of looking at the sensitive issues that people are facing in Pakistan. It is great that they are trying to use disciplines that are beyond just law and trying to reach out to a wider audience. It’s a pleasure to work with them.

Female John Wick Movie In The Works In addition to John Wick 4 and a TV series planned for Starz, now Lionsgate is developing a female-centric spinoff with Ballerina. Details include that Ballerina will follow a young female assassin who seeks revenge against the people who killed her family. It is unknown if Keanu Reeves will appear in the film, but if he does, it will be in a cameo role. Ballerina is being directed by Len Wiseman (Underworld, Swamp Thing). It's further reported the picture is on the fast track, with a script by Shay Hatten, who wrote the recent John Wick 3 and also the Zack Snyder-directed Army of the Dead for Netflix. The female assassin character was featured briefly in John Wick 3, played by Unity Phelan, but it could be somebody new in the role. I like the John Wick films a lot, as the martial arts depicted are a lot closer to real life than what most of the Hollywood movies do with the goofy Kung Fu stuff. I hope Ballerina actually gets female martial artists to train the main character and do the stunts, as there can be a difference between men and women.


How has been your experience of curati n g performances for ‘We’ve been waiting for you’? The curatorial experience for me is not just about curating an exhibition as an organizer. For me, it is sort of coming together and trying to create an experience that is longlasting. I’ve been working with the artists under the initiative that I run called House Ltd. and I have cultivated a relationship with them. So, every time we come together, we go into a deep-rooted conversation, look at what we are doing and try to unpack not just the themes but, also how can this exhibition contribute to the larger discourse of performance art in Pakistan. And so for this exhibition as well, the ideas that we were dealing with were very real. I spent a lot of time just having conversations with the artists and discussing the craft of performance art. A lot of the work that we do for performance art is not rehearsed. Thus, it is very authentic as an artist and as a curator to go into that space and to get involved in.


With what kind of expectations should people come to this event? The first thing that I would definitely like to say is that space and the venue that we’ve selected for this exhibition, Bari Studio, is amazing for performance art. The moment I stepped into Bari studio I fell in love with it. The audience would definitely experience something that they have never seen before in terms of venue and how it’s used. Also, we are having 10 performances in one venue. It’s going to be a really charged experience for everybody where all of the artists are dealing with themes around the death penalty and doing performances that are very authentic and very raw. The materials that the artists have used in the performances range from, real bones to bricks to sand. Going from one performance to another where all of these have been curated in relationship to one another, each performance will be experienced individually, but then all of them coming together is going to have an impact of its own.

The “Windy City” name has nothing to do with Chicago weather Was this one of the random facts you already knew? Chicago’s nickname was coined by 19th-century journalists who were referring to the fact that its residents were “windbags” and “full of hot air.”

Peanuts aren’t technically nuts They’re legumes. According to Merriam-Webster, a nut is only a nut if it’s “a hard-shelled dry fruit or seed with a separable rind or shell and interior kernel.” That means walnuts, almonds, cashews, and pistachios aren’t nuts either. They’re seeds.

Armadillo shells are bulletproof In fact, one Texas man was hospitalized when a bullet he shot at an armadillo ricocheted off the animal and hit him in the jaw.

Birds Of Prey 'Feminist Film' Confirms Ewan McGregor

Kangana Ranaut is a wannabe Rekha, says sister Rangoli Chandel

Recall when I wrote about how Jared Leto is done as the Joker, I said the reason is because of Harley Quinn becoming a feminist hero for the DCEU. Now Ewan McGregor confirms exactly that -- that Birds of Prey is a feminist film, much like the Marvel Brie Larson Captain Marvel movie. While speaking with France's Premiere, McGregor offers the feminist approach is what he liked about the script: “What interested me with Birds of Prey is that it’s a feminist film. It is very finely written, there is in the script a real look on misogyny. And I think we need that, we need to be more aware of how we behave with the opposite sex. We need to be taught to change.” So we see that in the Birds of Prey movie, apparently Ewan McGregor's Black Mask - the villain - is a misogynist. The present state of Hollywood sees their version of feminist films and TV shows promote women at the expense of men, something which Disney is reknown for doing, which includes their failed Star Wars movies and now Marvel Studios, and it has now reached into the DCEU.

Rangoli Chandel has called sister and Bollywood actor Kangana Ranaut a wannabe Rekha. Before you jump to conclusions, this was Rangoli’s way of wishing the veteran actor on her birthday on Thursday. Rangoli tweeted Thursday afternoon, “Today I will expose Kangana, she is wannabe Rekha ji, here are some pictures please see and decide #theoriginalbadgirl #Rekhaji #ultimatediva.” She also tweeted a picture of Kangana and Rekha and wrote, “Rekha ji is the kindest soul Kangana met in this film industry today is her birthday, she loves Kangana like her own and we pray for her long healthy and hearty life.” Both Rekha and Kangana have often expressed love for each other. Earlier this year, Rekha showered praises on Kangana and said, “If I had a daughter she would have been like Kangana”. Rekha even called her a real life Jhansi Ki Rani ahead of the release of Kangana’s directorial debut -- Manikarnika The Queen of Jhansi, in which she featured in the titular role. Kangana recently completed work on Ashwiny Iyer Tiwari’s Panga in which she will essay the role of a kabaddi player.


Friday, 11 October, 2019


‘it WON't HappeN agaiN' iNSiSt Ferrari'S FeudiNg driverS aHead OF JapaN gp TOKYO



QUABBLING teammates Sebastian Vettel and Charles Leclerc on Thursday insisted "everything is clear now" with Ferrari team orders after their Russian Grand Prix debacle. The Scuderia saw their race in Sochi fall apart handing Mercedes a one-two after a pre-arranged plan for Leclerc, who started from pole position, to "tow" Vettel into the lead unravelled when the German refused to give back the place before retiring with a mechanical problem. Leclerc told reporters in Suzuka ahead of the weekend's typhoon-threatened Japanese Grand Prix that team principal Mattia Binotto had held talks with both drivers to iron out a "misunderstanding". "Yeah, obviously there was some misunderstanding from the car but I think we've had a discussion and everything is clear now," said Leclerc. "Obviously it felt like it was a huge deal from

the outside, which it definitely wasn't, but yeah, now everything is fine." Vettel disobeyed team orders in Russia and Leclerc seemed to have a further dig at his teammate before trying, cryptically, to wriggle out of it. "I think that's clear from the beginning of the season, we need to obey team orders," said the Monegasque. "And what is clear is that the situation wasn't clear for both of the drivers,

starting the race, and I think that's the most important. "So we spoke about it and we'll make sure that this situation doesn't happen again in the future." Vettel agreed with his teammate that relations between them and the team had been resolved but admitted: "There are certain things we could have done better." "We spoke about it obviously, more than once," Vettel told reporters.

"We speak with each other. Maybe different to what some people think. But I think it's pretty clear. But in the end, we look forward and look forward to this race and the next races. So not worried too much." Vettel shrugged off suggestions that Ferrari rookie Leclerc's recent electrifying pace, which has seen him win two races and top Vettel consistently in qualifying, had any bearing on what happened in Russia. "Charles is doing a very good job, but I genuinely believe it's first a race against yourself and then the others," said Vettel. Saturday's qualifying and practice have been put in doubt by the approach of Super Typhoon Hagibis, which has caused the cancellation of two Rugby World Cup games. Japanese Grand Prix organisers will make a decision on Friday whether to move qualifying to Sunday morning, saying the safety of fans and drivers was their top priority. "I think it's pretty clear if the typhoon is going to come here there's no way we can drive," said Leclerc.

Euro 2020 hopefuls England must tighten up at the back, says Alexander: Arnold LONDON AGENCIES

Sacked Wallaby Folau offered to apologise for homophobic posts SYDNEY: Former Wallabies star Israel Folau offered a public apology over his antigay social media posts and agreed to allow Rugby Australia to review future posts before uploading them, court documents show. The devoutly Christian fullback was fired in May for posting on Instagram that "hell awaits" gay people and others he considers sinners. Folau, 30, is pursuing legal action against Rugby Australia and NSW Rugby, claiming he was unlawfully dismissed under legislation that disallows sackings because of a person's religion. The Super Rugby record try-scorer had been on a Aus$1 million-a-year (US$690,000), fouryear deal. In court documents made public Thursday, Folau's lawyers said he offered a series of concessions to Rugby Australia for what they called a "low-level" breach of the governing body's code of conduct. These included paying a fine to Rugby Australia, serving a four-week suspension, and "submitting to mentoring sessions about how he could practice his faith publicly and how he could best articulate his religious views and beliefs on social media". AGENCIES

Naomi Osaka picks Japanese citizenship with eye on Olympics: NHK TOKYO: Tennis star Naomi Osaka has decided to choose Japanese over American nationality with an eye on the Tokyo 2020 Olympics, public broadcaster NHK reported Thursday. Osaka, who has a Japanese mother and a Haitian father, told NHK she has completed an administrative step to obtain Japanese citizenship ahead of her birthday next week. Japanese law stipulates that a Japanese with more than one nationality must chose one before turning 22 years old. "It gives me a special feeling to try to go to the Olympics to represent Japan," the two-time Grand Slam champion told the broadcaster in an interview in Tokyo. "I think I will be able to put more of my emotion into it by playing for the pride of the country," she said, according to the article published in Japanese on the NHK website. Osaka added she wants to aim for the gold although she is also worried as expectations will be high. The young tennis sensation is a household name in Japan, where her every move is followed feverishly by local media, particularly when she is in the country of her mother's birth. AGENCIES

Trent Alexander-Arnold says England must improve their defensive record if they are to stand any chance of winning Euro 2020. Gareth Southgate's side can assure themselves of a place in next year's finals if they beat the Czech Republic in their Group A qualifier in Prague on Friday. England are firm favourites to advance after a perfect start to the qualification campaign, including a 5-0 win over their next opponents at Wembley in March. England have a wealth of attacking options including Harry Kane, Raheem Sterling and Jadon Sancho but have had defensive problems in recent matches. A 5-3 win over Kosovo at Southampton last month did little to paper over cracks that showed when the Netherlands won 3-1 in the Nations League semi-final in June. Individual errors accounted for many of the goals shipped across those two games as Southgate continues to strive for a settled back four. "If we want to be regarded as

one of the best teams in Europe and go far in the Euros, and try and win the competition, our clean sheets and goals conceded must be fewer," Liverpool full-back AlexanderArnold said. "We have to concede fewer goals. As defenders, as a team and as a unit we know where to improve and where to work on. "Some games, it just happens. We will analyse what went wrong and try and make sure it does not

happen again." Champions League-winning right-back Alexander-Arnold will battle with Kieran Trippier for a place in Southgate's team. James Maddison has withdrawn from the England squad for the two Euro 2020 qualifiers due to illness. The Leicester midfielder, 22, has made an impressive start to the Premier League campaign and was in strong contention to make a senior debut.

FOgNiNi SayS Murray JuSt liKe HiM 'becauSe He cOMplaiNS' SHANGHAI: Fabio Fognini said on Thursday that Andy Murray and himself are alike because they both like to complain, after their match at the Shanghai Masters descended into acrimony. Bad blood boiled on Tuesday when the Italian defeated the Briton in three bitter sets, during which Murray told Fognini to "shut up". Afterwards, the former number one accused 12th-ranked Fognini of shouting while he played a critical point. The 32-year-old Fognini attempted to play down the row. "What do I have to say? I have to say something?" Fognini replied, asked by AFP what he made of Murray's accusations. "I don't have to defend myself. The past is the past, I have known him since we are 14. "For me they stay on court, and that's it... I've nothing to say." Pushed if was aggrieved to have been told to "shut up" by a fuming Murray, Fognini said: "I don't (wasn't) upset, I'm not. "He has his character, I have mine, and that's it." Fognini, who defeated Russia's Karen Khachanov to reach the last eight in Shanghai on Thursday, queried the need to make peace with three-time Grand Slam champion Murray. "Peace? I told you, we know each other really well," said Fognini. "Inside the court we are almost the same because most of the time I'm complaining and he's complaining. "But that's part of our job, so I've nothing to say." Reports suggested that Fognini and Murray, who clashed at the net towards the end of their tetchy match, followed the row on afterwards. "We talked normally," said the Italian. Fognini put on another colourful display to reach the Shanghai quarter-finals. The Italian had several prickly exchanges with the chair umpire and the crowd in a 6-3, 7-5 victory over Khachanov. Fognini collapsed in fits of laughter at the net after one umpiring decision and then had an animated exchange with the official in Italian. He next plays Russia's Daniil Medvedev, the in-form world number four and US Open finalist. "I think it's the worst player that I can play at the moment because he changed completely in the summer," Fognini said. "Of course he was great also before, but he made unbelievable changes during the US swing and he's dangerous, he's really dangerous."

Coe defended IAAF from corruption charges in French court PARIS AGENCIES

Global head of athletics Sebastian Coe defended the allocation of three World Championships and denied corruption in bidding processes during an appearance at a French court last year, documents seen by AFP reveal. The court interrogated Coe, the president of the International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF), in May 2018 over the governing body's decision to award the 2017 championships to London, suspicions of bribes in the failed candidature of Qatar that year and the decision to award this year's event to Doha. The hearing also questioned Coe about the 2021 competition being awarded to Eugene in the United States, home of equipment manufacturer Nike, a company for which Coe served as an ambassador until 2015. The court transcript, which is in French, records that Coe promised: "If proof is provided that candidatures could have been obtained by corruption I would be ready to reconsider these decisions." Since the Doha championships

have just been completed, amid controversy over low attendances and punishing temperatures, the only host that could be changed is Eugene, in the west coast state of Oregon. That city has also attracted negative headlines as the home of the Oregon Project, a distance running group sponsored by Nike. The head of the project, Alberto Salazar, was banned for doping on the eve of this year's World Championships. "Publicly, I did not support any candidacy but I voted for Doha. You are the only ones who know that I voted for Doha," double 1,500 metres Olympic champion Coe told two judges at France's National Financial Prosecutor's Office. "The Middle East was a booming market supported by a desire to globalise sport," said Coe, who headed the IAAF's evaluation committee at the time. Coe, who became IAAF president in 2015, said he was unaware of two payments totalling $3.5 million (3.2 million euros) from Oryx Qatar Sports Investment to a company owned by Papa Massata Diack, the son of former IAAF President Lamine Diack, as part of a failed attempt to land the 2017 games. For prosecutors, this "suggests


that the benefits obtained from London were even more advantageous". "Absolutely not", replied Coe, saying that London had been chosen for its infrastructure. In November 2014, Doha edged out Eugene and was awarded the 2019 event. "There is a time for a bid to become a good bid," said Coe. Eugene was designated the 2021 host in April 2015 without the usual examining procedure even

though Gothenburg in Sweden had also expressed its interest. At the time, Diack was still IAAF president. Coe said the event had never been held in the United States and "for our commercial health we had to be in the American market." He said he had supported the Eugene bid, but insisted he knew nothing of any promises the American bid might have made to the IAAF or Lamine Diack.

Friday, 11 October, 2019


dOubtS taKeN Out NOW: Sri laNKa cOacH ratNayaKe ON tOuriNg paKiStaN LAHORE



RI LANKA coach Rumesh Ratnayake lavished praise on Pakistan upon the conclusion of his side's tour, calling the hospitality Sri Lanka had received "a privilege to be appreciated". Speaking to the media after the visitors beat Pakistan by 13 runs to complete a 3-0 T20I series whitewash, Ratnayake said the tour had gone very smoothly, and made him confident his side soon wouldn't be the only ones to have visited Pakistan. "This tour is a message for the whole world, and especially a message for future Sri Lankans," Ratnayake said. "This has gone very smoothly. Us playing here will encourage so many other countries to also to be here. "To experience the hospitality of Pakistan is a great thing; I've experienced it after a long, long time, and if anything, it's got even better. It was a lot of hard work for the whole system to have us here. "You've done a great job in having us here and the security has been impeccable. I've enjoyed every moment of it even

though some of us came in doubt. But the doubt has been taken out now so I would like to thank you all for making it happen." Sri Lanka were originally scheduled to visit Pakistan for a two-match Test series, but with several first-team players opting against travelling, the PCB and the SLC agreed to have Sri Lanka over for a limited-overs tour. The Test series the sides are drafted to play against each other will form part of the World Test Championship, with wins and losses particularly significant in smaller series like this one. That is understood to be one of the major stumbling blocks for the series taking place in Pakistan, as Sri Lanka would not have their full-strength side to choose from. However, with Sri Lanka cleaning up the T20I series in surprisingly comfortable fashion with the players available to them, and the general sense of safety Ratnayake said they felt over the fortnight, he sensed the prospect of his side playing Test cricket in Pakistan had increased. While admitting the board couldn't force anyone to come who wasn't willing, he suggested those watching at home would have seen "it is safe to be here". "We'll certainly explain that to them

and they'll have seen it as well. We'll try and convince them as much as we can, but we cannot enforce anything. Hopefully, they've changed by seeing this series be so successful. "The crowd has been the same as 30 years ago; it hasn't changed," Ratnayake, who played seven Tests and 16 ODIs in Pakistan over the course of his career, said. "It was very touching when they were holding up signs saying 'Welcome Sri Lanka' and it was very moving to see that affection from the people." But while the words off the pitch were friendly enough from the visitors, Sri Lanka haven't exactly been apprehensive guests, especially since they arrived in Lahore. A 2-0 ODI series win for Pakistan in Karachi suggested this might be the sort of tour on which Sri Lanka gained experience rather than having results go their way. But Lahore saw a remarkable turnaround, with the supposedly weakened hosts putting Pakistan to the sword in all three games, and sealing their firstever 3-0 T20I whitewash in the process. Ratnayake said calling them a weak unit would be inaccurate. "It was not the weakest team. We

chose the best team. In Sri Lanka we have about 30-40 good players, so whichever we chose we were most confident of. We believed they could do something at the highest level. We emphasised being fearless and having that belief and also the confidence to take good decisions. Good decisions give you the chance of winning a match. They were fearless and they executed our game plans brilliantly. "This performance will bring about a huge effect on the spectators, on our supporters, and on the players themselves. Our school system is a very good system. And those [young] players who are watching, the future players will certainly take heart from this and take courage and you'll see a huge impetus in the growth of the game in the future. "What we were looking for is consistency. We won here, but as a coach what I'd like to see is do we have consistency in the future? This is just T20, there are two other formats, and we should not be over-awed by this. But certainly, we need to take a leaf from

this and that should help us take it to another level in all aspects of the game." It wasn't just that Sri Lanka didn't have their full quota to choose from. By the third T20I, they got downright funky with team selections. Having stuck with the same XI for the first two games, they decided to give the entire bench a run out for the final contest, making five changes. That, as some noted, effectively made the playing XI a third-choice side, but it wouldn't prevent the visitors from beating Pakistan by 13 runs. Indeed, the Players-of-the-Match in the second and third T20I were two Sri Lankan batsmen who had never played a single T20I game before this series. "Some of them [the players] we wouldn't have seen if Asantha de Mel [chairman of selectors] hadn't taken the bold decision of playing the five players who hadn't been part of the side today. We weren't even sure what combinations we would play, but you saw Oshada Fernando and Bhanuka Rajapaksa in this series because of that."

Mayank Agarwal hits 108 as India run rampant DAY 1, STUMPS INDIA 273 FOR 3 (AGARWAL 108, KOHLI 63*, RAHANE 18*, RABADA 3-48) V SOUTH AFRICA PUNE AGENCIES

Mayank Agarwal came back to the site of his firstclass resurgence to score a second successive Test hundred that sent India into a position of strength once again. Cheteshwar Pujara supported him with his second successive half-century, and Virat Kohli loomed large with an unbeaten 63 of his own. South Africa will be disappointed they took just the three wickets on surface that didn't completely eliminate their fast bowlers. It was a pitch on which Kagiso Rabada managed to take three wickets with a mode of attack straight out of South Africa: bowling in a channel outside off, getting outside edges that carried. Remember the wry smile of resignation when Faf du Plessis lost the toss in Visakhapatnam? This time Virat Kohli smiled in slight embarrassment after he had won yet another toss. This time du Plessis wasn't as deflated because there was some moisture in the surface from the rains in the lead-up to the Test. Pune is also a pitch known for its bounce, so South Africa had something to work with. Agarwal went through that tough period, not without some fortune but nothing that might count as

undue luck for an opening batsman. He and Pujara added 138 for the second wicket after the early fall of Rohit Sharma before Kohli took over with a winters' afternoon stroll of a half-century. The first hour was full of frustration for South Africa with edges eluding fielders, mistimed hooks falling short of fielders, an umpire's call going Agarwal's way on an lbw shout, and quite a few plays and misses. India were in control of fewer than 75% of the deliveries they faced in the first 15 overs. A touring side can't ask for more help in away conditions in this age of cricket. And yet, they had only Rohit's wicket - off a length ball that held its line - to show. Apart from some ordinary luck, South Africa's

lengths were either too full or too short. A ball after debutant Anrich Nortje, playing ahead of the extra spinner, clocked him on the head, Agarwal was good enough to cover-drive a full ball for four. As Nortje went fuller searching for assistance, Agarwal drove him for three fours in another over. Pujara didn't even provide South Africa a look-in despite taking 13 balls to get off the mark. He kept skipping down to spin, and kept finding the gaps. His stumbling block in the last Test was his failure to cover the seam movement away from him in both the innings. So it was natural South Africa attacked his stumps trying to take the ball away. It wasn't clear if his front foot strode further but he did seem to cover the movement better. A delivery that looked like an action replay - again from Vernon Philnader - of his second-innings lbw was comfortable worked away for a single to leg. Agarwal's bursts of scoring continued as the lone specialist spinner Keshav Maharaj kept providing India the loose balls. Two fours off Maharaj in the 28th over took him into the 40s, another square cut brought up a fifty. This was during a period that he had to face a short-ball barrage from Nortje, which momentarily brought the run rate under three but couldn't cause further damage. It was instructive that Rabada was now able to achieve the rarest of feats: get Pujara out nicking after he had brought up a fifty on a home pitch. Not only did the pitch have the movement to allow him to do so, it also had the bounce to make sure it carried to Faf du Plessis at slip.

First football match held under floodlights in Chitral CHITRAL STAFF REPORT

In the first development of its type, a football match was held under floodlights between the Imran Khan Foundation School and Centennial Model High School at the Chitral Football Stadium in the mountainous city. This occasion marked the first time when a match played in the city under floodlights, as no other football pitches in the region ever had such facilities. The game – which was organised by Sehat as part of their #SehatCares CSR initiative and attended by over 500 sports enthusiasts – was won by Centennial School 2-0. Sehat officials distributed prizes and trophies to the winning team and runners-up. Notable figures were present at the football match, including DFA Chitral President Zafar Ali Shah, DFA Chitral Patron-in-Chief Hussain Ahmed, and Centennial Model High School principal, who was the chief guest on the occasion.

The event marked yet another milestone DFA Chitral, who had already sent a team in Spain through the Atletico Madrid Academy in Pakistan, in addition to providing a multitude of talent for selection in the national football team. Following the event, Hussain Ahmed said: “Chitral is a region whose football talent is definitely recognized but sadly neglected by the higher football authorities in the country. They haven’t sent scouts nor have held official camps or trials in the region but have done so in other regions.” He hoped that this facility that has been created can spearhead football in the mountainous region and invite teams from other parts of the country to compete against our local footballing talent”. Director marketing at Sehat, Bilal Mumtaz, who also spoke on the occasion, said: “I have been coming to Chitral for the past few years to hold camps through personal efforts, as I see immense footballing talent in the region and want to do my part enrich the lives

of the youth in this area.” He also hoped to see more facilities being developed for the development of football in Chitral, and


expressed happiness that “there is finally an international standard football ground for holding matches of a competitive nature”.

James anderson heads to Manchester city in bid to overcome injury MANCHESTER: James Anderson is set to swap Old Trafford for the Etihad, after arranging to train at Manchester City in a bid to recover from the calf injury that wrecked his Ashes campaign. Anderson, 37, bowled just four overs in the first Test against Australia at Edgbaston in July before suffering a recurrence of the injury that he first sustained while playing for Lancashire at Sedburgh this summer. He was subsequently left out of the England squad that will play two Tests in New Zealand next month, but still hopes to resume his career on the South Africa tour in December and January. The agreement with City means that Anderson will be able to use the facilities at their Etihad campus for the next two months, accompanied by England's head of strength and conditioning Rob Ahmun. The pair met with City's head of sports science, Sam Erith, on Tuesday to discuss the arrangement. Anderson has previously trained in the off-season at Burnley, his home club, at the invitation of the manager, Sean Dyche. With 575 Test wickets from 149 matches to date, Anderson is already the leading wicket-taker in England's Test history, and recently overtook Australia's Glenn McGrath to become the most prolific seam bowler of all time. However, he has no plans to retire just yet, and recently said that he wanted to emulate Ryan Giggs, who played for Manchester United until he was 40. "It has been absolutely devastating to miss the Ashes series but I have not thought for one second about retiring," Anderson said. "In fact, I'm going to look into how Ryan Giggs was able to play football at the highest level until he was 40. That's what I'd like to do." AGENCIES

Friday, 11 October, 2019


ECP rEjECts PtI's aPPlICatIons for sECrECy In forEIgn fundIng CasE

PML-N undecided over participation in Azadi March LAHORE STAFF REPORT

Justice Isa ‘ostensible owner’ of UK properties, govt tells SC

The Pakistan Muslim LeagueNawaz (PML-N) has once again postponed its final decision regarding participation in the Jamiat Ulema-e-Islam-Fazl’s (JUI-F) upcoming Azadi March owing to the cancellation of meeting between former premier Nawaz Sharif and Leader of the Opposition in National Assembly (NA) Shehbaz Sharif. Shehbaz was scheduled to meet his elder brother Nawaz at the Kot Lakhpat Jail on Thursday to present the party’s recommendations on the upcoming march for approval, but the meeting was cancelled when the former postponed his plans due to backache. Party sources said that the PML-N president was advised bed rest by his doctors. While PML-N continues to delay its final decision, Pakistan People’s Party (PPP) has agreed to support JUI-F’s Azadi March. PPP Chairman Bilawal Bhutto-Zardari has said that his party would completely support JUI-F’s anti-government protest and would welcome the Azadi March. “We have not been told anything about the march but we will completely back JUI-F,” he said on Wednesday after a meeting of the party’s core committee. On Wednesday, reports emerged that PML-N was divided over participation in the anti-government march. Reportedly, fissures within the central leadership of the party had emerged during a meeting of the PML-N Central Executive Committee (CEC) that was held under the leadership of party president Shehbaz Sharif.


Fazl to lead Azadi March from Sukkur on Oct 27: report




HE Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) on Thursday rejected four applications filed by the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) seeking secrecy during the scrutiny of its foreign funding sources. A three-judge bench headed by Chief Election Commissioner Sardar Mohammad Raza also instructed the scrutiny committee to continue its work and instructed PTI representatives to appear before the committee on Oct 14. PTI’s founding member Akbar S Babar had filed the case in 2014, alleging that nearly $3 million in illegal foreign funds were collected through two offshore companies and that money was sent through illegal ‘hundi’ channels from the Middle East to accounts of ‘PTI employees’. He had also alleged that the foreign accounts used to collect funds were concealed from the annual audit reports submitted to the ECP. A scrutiny committee was formed in March last year to complete an audit of PTI’s funding sources in one month. Its mandate was later ex-


The government on Thursday informed the Supreme Court (SC) that Justice Qazi Faez Isa was the ‘ostensible owner’ of three properties in the United Kingdom as his family members purchased the assets at a time when they had no independent source of income. The assertion was made in the government’s response – submitted by Attorney General of Pakistan Anwar Mansoor Khan – on a set of petitions challenging the presidential references against Justice Isa. “The petitioner’s spouse and children own expensive properties in the UK which were purchased in the year 2004 and 2013 at a time when they had no independent source of income of their own,” reads the reply. “The inescapable conclusion which follows is that the properties are benami and that the petitioner is the ostensible owner,” it continues. The response states that the presidential reference filed in the Supreme Judicial Council only sought an inquiry to ascertain whether Justice Isa’s conduct in


Syria’s Kurds battled to hold off a Turkish invasion on Thursday after air strikes and shelling launched a long-threatened operation that could reshape the country and trigger a humanitarian crisis. US President Donald Trump tried to justify the de facto green light he gifted his Turkish counterpart Recep Tayyip Erdogan for an assault seen as a blatant betrayal of Washington’s erstwhile Kurdish allies. Syrian Kurdish forces lost 11,000 personnel and played a key role in the years-long battle to eliminate the “caliphate” the Islamic State group had set up in the region. In scenes all too familiar since the start of Syria’s war more than eight years ago, thousands of civilians were seen

PML-N files plea in ECP to know foreign funding details of PTI ISLAMABAD: The Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) has filed a plea in the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) to know assets of the ruling Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI). The PML-N filing the application in the ECP has asked to provide PTI’s assets from year 2014 to 2018. Talking to media after filing the plea in the ECP, PML-N leader Mohsin Shahnawaz Ranjha said that the party wanted to expose a real thief in front of masses. He also demanded to bring in public alleged foreign funding to the PTI and the scrutiny committee action against it so that people could know that the people who talked to change are the real thief. Ranjha said that where from the PTI got foreign funding and what was the purpose of it while he claimed that Imran Khan had staged protest sit-in in front of the parliament on instruction of powers which hampered investment in the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor. Kept on claiming the PML-N leader said that the country’s economy was ruined with well-thought planning adding that Imran Khan is working on enemies agenda. STAFF REPORT

tended for an indefinite period. In a previous hearing on Oct 1, the ECP bench had reserved its verdict on PTI’s applications after listening to the arguments of the various parties to the case.

Speaking to media after the verdict was announced, Babar said that the process of the scrutiny of PTI’s funding would be brought to its logical conclusion. He said that the funding case

against PTI would reveal the true facts to people and clarified that he did not have any personal enmity with Prime Minister Imran Khan. Babar had filed the foreign funding case before the ECP in 2014 after he developed differences with PTI Chairman Imran Khan over alleged internal corruption and abuse of laws governing political funding. For over a year, the proceedings of the case were delayed in the ECP as the PTI had filed a writ petition in October 2015 in the Islamabad High Court seeking to restrain the ECP from scrutinising its accounts. In February 2017, the IHC had remanded the case back to the ECP for a fresh review of its jurisdiction. On May 8 of the same year, a full bench of the ECP had once again declared its complete jurisdiction over the matter and stated that the PTI had failed to produce any evidence that the petitioner had been expelled from the party and hence lost the right to question the PTI’s accounts. In March 2018, a scrutiny committee had been formed to look into PTI’s foreign funding accounts to ascertain any wrongdoing.

SAYS INSTEAD OF PROVIDING ANSWERS, JUSTICE ISA ‘TOOK A VERY EVASIVE STANCE AND STARTED VILIFYING THE COMPLAINANT’ his wife nor adult offspring nor was he under obligation to disclose any information concerning them. Challenging the allegation, Justice Isa said the presidential references are filed under “malice, ulterior motives and to achieve a collateral purpose and to humiliate, subjugate and browbeat the judiciary, destroy the judiciary’s independence and make the judiciary subservient to the executive by subverting the Constitution.” In his constitutional plea, Justice Isa also sought a stay in the SJC proceedings against him till the matter was decided in the top court. The council, however, maintains that the proceedings are immune from a judicial review under Article 211 of the Constitution. In another petition seeking a fullcourt, Justice Isa had underscored that the ‘possibility’ of the judge being swayed over a personal advantage is a ground for recusal under Article 4 of the Code of Conduct of Judges of the Supreme Court and the High Courts of Pakistan. Consequently, Justice Masood and Justice Ahsan recused themselves from the bench.

Jamiat Ulema-e-Islam (JUI-F) chief Maulana Fazlur Rehman has decided to lead Azadi March from Sukkur on Oct 27, a private news channel reported on Thursday. The campaign will be started from Sindh as sources close to Rehman say that he fears being arrested by the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI)led provincial governments in Punjab, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KP) and Balochistan which might also attempt to hamper the march. It was learnt that the Sindh government will help Rehman’s Azadi March by providing facilities that would allow the protest to gain momentum by the time it enters Punjab. Sources say that the JUI-F chief does not intend for a prolonged sitin in the federal capital like the one led by Prime Minister Imran Khan when he was in opposition. Rehman said he will announce the next plan of action himself after reaching Islamabad. “Protests will be staged nationwide if Azadi March is disrupted,” he warned. NEWS DESK

Syria’s Kurds battle Turkish invasion

calls itself the Syrian National Army — are mostly Sunni Arab former rebels who were defeated by the Damascus regime. REFUGEE WARNING TO EU: Erdogan, who is politically embattled at home, wants a buffer zone in which to send back some of the 3.6 million Syrian refugees his country hosts. He warned the European Union on Thursday that the alternative if it criticised Turkey’s military offensive was to allow the refugees to head to its shores instead. “If you try to frame our operation there as an invasion… we will open the doors and send 3.6 million migrants to you,” Erdogan said in a speech to the Turkish parliament. In addition to feared deportations from Turkey, the latest flare-up was sending thousands of fearful civilians — both Kurdish and Arab — onto the roads across the targeted Kurdish-controlled areas.

“in owning the properties, though ostensibly, is free from financial impropriety”. “The simple and straightforward answer to this query would have been to disclose the source of funds employed to purchase the properties, the mode and manner of acquisition of foreign exchange and its transfer to UK,” it continues. The government’s response states that instead of providing answers, Justice Isa “took a very evasive stand and started vilifying and castigating the complainant”. “The complainant may not be a symbol of propriety but as a judge, the petitioner [Justice Isa] should have a displayed such a character,” added the response. The government maintained that the information provided by the complainant was admitted by the petitioner as well “therefore, instead of assassinating the character of the complainant”, Justice Isa should come forward with the information. Furthermore, the government stressed that the mere filing of a reference by President Arif Alvi cannot be visualised as a threat to the independence of the judiciary. “There is no shred of evidence to establish that any of the Constitutional functionary

fleeing their homes on Thursday, in vehicles or on foot with their belongings on their backs. The broad offensive — which Erdogan dubbed “Operation Peace Spring” — drew international outrage and warnings, including from within Trump’s own camp, and will be discussed in an emergency meeting of the UN Security Council later on Thursday. After launching the assault with air strikes and intense artillery fire, the Turkish military and its Syrian proxies crossed the border into Kurdish-controlled areas. Turkey was yet to unleash its full military might, however, with the Syrian Democratic Forces — the autonomous Kurds’ de facto army — holding off two

has acted with slightest of malafide.” According to the government, the president deliberately omitted the names of Justice Isa’s spouse and children to “keep them out of the controversy”. Citing Article 248 of the Constitution, the government argued that the president and prime minister of the country have immunity and are not answerable to any court, including the SC, for acts done in exercise of powers and performance of functions of their respective offices. The reply also stressed that Article 48(4) of the Constitution states that advice tendered to the president by the premier shall not be inquired into by any court. Finally, the government has denied “all allegations, insinuations, asperations” put forth by Justice Isa and the country’s bar associations and councils alleging the presidential references were filed out of malafide intent and for ulterior motives. In May, presidential reference was filed in the Supreme Judicial Council against Justice Isa alleging non-disclosure of assets in his wealth statement. In his reply, the top judge maintained that he was neither answerable for the assets of

incursion attempts. The first one was conducted late Wednesday against Tal Abyad, one of the main Kurdish-controlled towns in the area where Ankara wants to set up a buffer zone stretching some 30 kilometres (20 miles) into Syria. The other push was attempted on Thursday around Ras al-Ain further west, the other main town in the zone Turkish media reports say is the first goal of the offensive. Our fighters “confronted a field incursion attempt by the Turkish occupation army on the axis of Tal Halaf and Aluk,” the Kurdish-led Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) said. Turkish jets carried out fresh strikes in late morning, the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights

and a Kurdish military official told AFP. Fighting broke out in several locations along the roughly 120 kilometre (75 mile) wide front where operations are focused, the sources said. According to the Britain-based Observatory, at least 19 SDF fighters and eight civilians were killed in the first hours of the assault. AFP correspondents on the Turkish side of the border said they saw fighters crossing into Syria in dozens of vehicles. Turkey, which has carried out two previous cross-border offensives into Syria since the start of the conflict, relies heavily on Syrian proxies for ground operations. The Syrian fighters — most of them grouped under the banner of an outfit that

Published by Arif Nizami at Plot # 7, Al-Baber Centre, F/8 Markaz, Islamabad. Ph: 051-2204545. Email:


Profile for Pakistan Today

E-Paper PDF 11 October (ISB)  

E-Paper PDF 11 October (ISB)  

Profile for abidoon