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tuesday, 17 April, 2018 I Rajab-ul-Murajjab 30, 1439 I Rs 17.00 I vol vIII No 289 I 16 Pages I karachi Edition

lhc Bench imPoses temPorAry BAn on tv chAnnels from Airing ‘AntiJudiciAry’ sPeeches By nAwAz, mAryAm And 14 other Pml-n leAders

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orders PemrA to decide on contemPt Petitions within 15 dAys, slAms regulAtor for dismissing PleAs AgAinst contemPtuous remArKs

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Justice nAqvi sAys ‘not every Person should Be Allowed to criticise courts Just for sAKe of exercising their right to criticise’

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LHC temporariLy bars airing of sHarifs’ rants LAHORE

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he lahore high court (lhc) on monday temporarily barred tv channels from airing alleged “anti-judiciary speeches” uttered by Pakistan muslim league-nawaz (Pml-n) ‘quaid for life’ nawaz sharif, his daughter maryam nawaz and 14 other senior party leaders. A three-judge full bench, headed by Justice syed mazahar Ali Akbar naqvi and comprising

Justice Atir mahmood and Justice chaudhry masood Jahangir, had taken up a set of 27 miscellaneous petitions against “anti-judiciary speeches” delivered by Pml-n leaders. the bench directed the Pakistan electronic media regulatory Authority (PemrA) to decide the complaints pending with it regarding the alleged contemptuous speeches within 15 days as well. until the authority decides the complaints, no alleged “anti-judiciary speeches” delivered by Pml-n leaders will be allowed to be aired during the 15 days, the court ruled, directing

Pakistan failing on human rights, says watchdog

PemrA to ensure strict monitoring of programmes to prevent any such content from being broadcast. the court also rejected an application filed by Advocate AK dogar on behalf of nawaz sharif requesting that Justice naqvi recuse himself from the full bench. “the judge authored the order against nawaz sharif allowing no chance of defence,” the application filed by dogar reads. it added that the remarks caused stress to his client after which he expects no fair treatment at the

hands of Justice naqvi. the bench, however, dismissed the defence counsel’s reservations.

CONTINUED ON PAGE 03

related story on page 02

CJP declines Punjab govt’s offer to enhance judges’ security

SC wants to see PEMRA free from government control

zia claims sharif children failed to ‘come clean’ on trust deed

STORY ON PAGE 02

If you can’t beat ’em, ignore ’em g

Anti-terror court shelves three cAses AgAinst tlP chief KhAdim rizvi, Aides for indefinite Period STORY ON PAGE 02

AfghAN tRIbESMEN, tRooPS kIll fIvE PAkIStANI SoldIERS STORY ON PAGE 04

STORY ON PAGE 03 g

cJP sAys those using women to Protest AgAinst sc verdict should Be ‘honourABle enough’ to leAd from the front CMYK

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Bench rePlAces mArriyum AurAngzeB with informAtion secretAry in sevenmemBer committee

STORY ON PAGE 02

Musharraf regime ‘sold’ Pakistanis to US, NA told STORY ON PAGE 03


02 NEWS

Tuesday, 17 April, 2018

CJP deClInes PunJab govT’s offer To enhanCe Judges’ seCurITy SAYS OVERALL SECURITY SHOULD BE SAYS SECURITY AGENCIES HAVE FAILED TO MAKE ANY DEVELOPMENT INTO IMPROVED TO BENEFIT COMMON PEOPLE THE FIRING INCIDENTS AT JUSTICE IJAZUL AHSAN’S LAHORE RESIDENCE ISLAMABAD

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HIEF Justice of Pakistan (CJP) Justice Saqib Nisar on Monday declined a request by the Punjab government to enhance security for judges. A notification by the apex court stated that in the backdrop of Sunday’s firing incidents at the residence of Justice Ijazul Ahsan, the government of Punjab wishes to enhance the security of judges. However, the request was declined by the chief justice who stated that judges do not need additional or extra security other than that provided in routine. According to the notification, the chief justice also stated that the overall security should be improved to benefit the common people. Also on Monday, Lahore police submitted to the CJP the

initial investigation report regarding the attack. According to the document filed with the CJP, police were alerted about the incident at around 10:45am following the registration of a complaint by Naik Abdul Razzaq of the Pakistan Rangers. A bullet hit the gate of the house, the report reads. A forensic team later collected all evidence. Initial reports suggested a bullet had been fired from a distance. A search has been conducted

in the vicinity. On Sunday, two separate firing incidents were reported outside the residence of Justice Ijazul Ahsan. A first information report (FIR) was consequently filed against unidentified persons, with charges comprising attempted murder, as well as, a violation of the anti-terrorism act. A Joint Investigation Team (JIT) was formed to probe into the matter on the day of the attack. A spokesperson for the Punjab government said that the JIT would be headed by Additional Inspector-General of Police (IG) Muhammad Tahir and comprise Deputy InspectorGeneral (DIG) Sultan Chaudhry alongside representatives from the Military Intelligence (MI), Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI), and Intelligence Bureau (IB). Officers of the Special Branch and Forensics Agency will also be part of the team. Following the incident, the CJP had

Zia claims Sharif children failed to 'come clean' on trust deed ISLAMABAD app

The accountability court conducting corruption proceedings against the Sharif family on Monday directed Panama Joint Investigation Team (JIT) head Wajid Zia to present details of mutual legal assistance (MLAs) documents sent to British Virgin Island (BVI) seeking record related to the Nielson and Nescol companies in Avenfield case. The case— based on a reference filed by the National Accountability Bureau (NAB) in light of the Supreme Court’s July 28’s verdict in Panama Papers case, pertains to the Sharif family’s London apartments. It is pertinent to mention here that Wajid Zia had earlier presented seven

MLAs documents in the accountability court after the court had directed the JIT head to approach the apex court for obtaining the JIT report’s Volume X. During the proceedings, the court also granted oneday exemption to former prime minister Nawaz Sharif and his daughter Maryam Nawaz from appearance as they couldn’t reach Islamabad due to inclement weather. In the hearing headed by Justice Mohammad Bashir, Maryam Nawaz’s counsel Amjad Pervaiz continued to cross-examine Wajid Zia, who is the main prosecution witness in the reference. In response to a question, Zia stated that there was a contradiction between the statement of

Maryam Nawaz and contents of trust deed of Nielson and Nescol. The trust deed was fake according to JIT’s analysis, he said. The JIT head informed the court that Hussein Nawaz also couldn’t give clear answer on question regarding the beneficiary ownership of Nielson and Nescol during the period of 1994 to 1996. However, Amjad Pervaiz accused Zia of hiding the real facts during the proceedings. To a query, He said that the JIT didn’t find any document showing Maryam Nawaz had paid ground rent of apartments or fees of any service provider. Later, the JIT head informed the court that the BVI officials had sought more information through e-mail to answer

MLA. However, the reply was not mentioned in the JIT report. The court directed JIT head to present the MLAs record and adjourned the case till Tuesday. During the last hearing, Wajid Zia had admitted that there was no evidence pointing to deposed premier Nawaz Sharif’s daughter Maryam’s involvement in the incorporation of Nielson and Nescol offshore companies. Maryam and Safdar’s lawyer Amjad Pervaiz began the twelfth cross-examination session of the JIT head, inquiring about the owner of Avenfield properties before it came under the possession of Nielson and Nescol. Zia had replied that the team had not investigated prior ownership before its transfer to the two companies. On Wednesday, Nawaz’s counsel Khawaja Harris concluded Zia’s crossexamination in the Avenfield case. After Harris concluded his cross-examination, Maryam’s counsel began his cross-examination.

Pakistan failing on human rights, says watchdog ISLAMABAD agENciES

Pakistani watchdog Human Rights Commission of Pakistan (HRCP) has criticised the country’s human rights record over the past year in a new report released Monday, saying the nation has failed to make progress on a myriad of issues, ranging from forced disappearances to women’s rights and protection of religious minorities. The report card issued by the HRCP says people continue to disappear in Pakistan, sometimes because they criticise the country’s powerful military or because they advocate better relations with neighbouring India. The blasphemy law in the country continues to be misused, especially against dissidents, with cases in which mere accusations that someone committed blasphemy lead to deadly mob violence, it said. While deaths directly linked to acts of terrorism declined in 2017, the report says attacks against the country’s minorities were on the rise. The 296-page report was dedicated to one of the commission’s founders, Asma Jahangir, whose death in February generated a worldwide outpouring of grief and accolades for the 66-yearold activist who was fierce in her commitment to human rights. “We have lost a human rights giant,” UN SecretaryGeneral Antonio Guterres said following Jahangir’s death. “She was a tireless

advocate for inalienable rights of all people and for equality – whether in her capacity as a Pakistani lawyer in the domestic justice system, as a global civil society activist, or as a Special Rapporteur … Asma will not be forgotten.” Monday’s report also took aim at religious bigotry in Pakistan and the government’s refusal to push back against religious zealots, fearing a backlash. “Freedom of expression and freedom of association is under attack, except for those who carry the religious banner,” commission spokesman IA Rehman said at the release of the report, which accused Pakistani authorities of ignoring “intolerance and extremism.” Religious conservative organisations continue to resist laws aimed at curbing violence against women, laws giving greater rights to women and removing legal restrictions on social exchanges between sexes, which remain segregated in many parts of Pakistani society, it said. Still, there was legal progress in other areas, it noted, describing as a “landmark development” a new law in the country’s largest province, Punjab, which accepts marriage licenses within the Sikh community at the local level, giving the unions protection under the law. But religious minorities in Pakistan continued to be a target of extremists, it said, citing attacks on Shiites, Christians falsely accused of blasphemy and also on Ahmedis, a sect reviled by mainstream Muslims as heretics.

Ahmedis are not allowed under Pakistan’s constitution to call themselves Muslims.“In a year when freedom of thought, conscience and religion continued to be stifled, incitement to hatred and bigotry increased, and tolerance receded even further,” said the report. On Sunday in Quetta, the capital of southwestern Baluchistan province, gunmen attacked Christian worshippers as they left Sunday services, killing two. Five other worshippers were wounded, two seriously. Last year was a troubling year for activists, journalists and bloggers who challenged Pakistan’s military. Several were detained, including five bloggers who subsequently fled the country after their release. From exile, some of them said their captors were agents of Pakistan’s intelligence agency, ISI. The agency routinely refuses to comment on accusations it is behind the disappearances. The bloggers were also threatened with charges of blasphemy. In December, Raza Mehmood Khan, an activist who worked with schoolchildren on both sides of the border to foster better relations was picked up by several men believed to be from the ISI after leaving a meeting that criticised religious extremism. In recent weeks, Pakistan’s Geo Television has been forced off the air in much of the country. Many activists have blamed this on the military, which took umbrage when the outlet criticised the country’s security institutions.

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visited the residence of Justice Ahsan and is said to be overseeing the situation himself. Punjab Chief Minister Shehbaz Sharif also took notice of the incident, however, his personal secretary was refused a meeting with the SC judge by the SC administration. Commenting on the incident, various lawyers, politicians and even the Inter-Services Public Relations (ISPR) condemned the attack. Earlier on Monday, during the hearing of a case related to the Football Federation of Pakistan (FFP), CJP Justice Saqib Nisar remarked that there was no development into the firing incidents at the residence of Ijaz-ul Ahsan’s residence which took place a day earlier. He also thanked the Supreme Court Bar Association and Pakistan Bar Council for expressing solidarity with Justice Ijazul Ahsan and calling off their announced boycott of courts.

PTI finalises nominees for caretaker PM, Punjab CM The Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) on Monday finalised three names to be nominated for the posts of caretaker prime minister (PM) and Punjab chief minister (CM). PTI Spokesman Fawad Chaudhry confirmed that the party had finalised Justice (r) Tassaduq Hussain Jillani, industrialist Abdur Razzaq Dawood and former State Bank of Pakistan (SBP) governor Ishrat Hussain for the caretaker prime minister. Dawood, a politician and industrialist, served as commerce minister in Pervez Musharraf’s cabinet from 1999 to 2002. Jillani served as the 21st CJP from December 12, 2013, to July 5, 2014. Ishrat Hussain is a Pakistani banker and economist who served as the dean of Institute of Business Administration (IBA) and the governor SBP from 1999 to 2006. According to the party, Shah Mehmood Qureshi has been entitled with the responsibility to present the names to Leader of the Opposition in National Assembly Khursheed Shah, who is responsible for forwarding opposition nominees for the position to the prime minister. For the position of caretaker Punjab chief minister, PTI will nominate Salman Shah, Shahid Hafeez Kardar and Tariq Khosa. NEWS DESK

Imran announces historic rally at Minar-e-Pakistan on April 29 MARDAN NEWS DESK

Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf Imran Khan (PTI) on Monday invited people to the party’s historic political gathering at the Minar-e-Pakistan in Lahore on April 29 during his address in Takht-i-Bahi, Mardan. The PTI leader took a swipe at Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) supremo Nawaz Sharif and its senior leaders for “attacking institutions” and commented on the firing incident at the residence of a Supreme Court (SC) justice on Sunday. “These people are after members of the Panama joint investigation team (JIT),” he said. Imran said that the entire nation is standing with the head of the now-defunct Panama JIT, Wajid Zia and added that Wajid will April 29 will be a testimony to the nation’s support for Wajid. In regard to allegations of horse trading in the recently held Senate elections, Imran admitted that some PTI senators “sold their conscience” and promised that he planned to root out all such members from the party. “Those who

sold their conscience will be thrown out from the party, even if we lose the election,” he assured and welcomed new PTI members saying that time will show how the decision was made the sake of an ideology and the country’s betterment. While speaking on the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KP) and the Federally Administered Tribal Areas (FATA) merger, the PTI leader slammed Jamiat Ulema-eIslam (JUI-F) chief Fazlur Rehman and Pakhtunkhwa Milli Awami Party (PMAP) Mehmood Achakzai saying that the duo was behind the obstructions in the merger. “KP and tribal areas should be merged. If there is a merger we can carry out development work, but who stopped it? Fazl and Achakzai. They told PML-N that PTI will become stronger [in the region] if a merger takes place,” said Imran. He further questioned Maualana’s intentions and religiousness as Fazl grabs every opportunity to form an alliance with those in power. “Maulana says that I am a Jewish conspiracy. I think that

there is no need for any conspiracies in his presence,” he stated. He stated that he empathised with tribal people as they have lived through massive hardships due to the fight against terrorism. Imran further said that the merger of the two provinces will usher in new era of development and he would make sure that it happens on first priority if the PTI wins the elections. Earlier in the day, during an interview with a Russian news agency, Imran Khan remarked that the United States (US) uses Pakistan like a tissue paper. “US President Donald Trump is speaking the language of India against Pakistan,” he said. “United States aid is nothing compared to the losses incurred by us. The meagre aid from the US cost Pakistan a lot.” He reiterated that Pakistan has paid the price of participating in the US war by losing more than 70,000 lives. “Pakistan wants peace in Afghanistan. A military solution won’t be able to resolve the Afghan crisis,” said Imran while commenting on Pakistan’s terms with Afghanistan.

If you can't beat 'em, ignore 'em ISLAMABAD Staff REpoRt

An anti-terrorism court (ATC) on Monday shelved three cases against Tehreek-e-Labbaik Pakistan (TLP) chief Khadim Hussain Rizvi and others over their involvement in cases related to the last year’s Faizabad sit-in. The Labbaik leader along with other religious activists are facing multiple charges, including terrorism, in several cases that were registered in 26 police stations across the federal capital after the Faizabad protests. The development comes days after the Punjab government capitulated to the demands of the Tehreek-e-Labbaik Pakistan (TLP) after the handful of supporters of TLP leader Khadim Hussain Rizvi, took to streets. The organisation had called off protests after being assured that the cases against its leadership, including Rizvi and Pir Afzal Qadri, and workers would be dropped, and the Faizabad agreement would be implemented. Following negotiations, an FIR [First Information Report] was registered regarding the

deaths of TLP activists killed during the sit-in while a number of arrested activists were released. The court proceedings against the leaders of a religious party were halted by ATC Judge Shahrukh Arjumand upon the petition filed by the prosecution. The prosecutor, in a petition, said that police are investigating cases from the scratch and after the completion of the investigation the police will file a new challan. The prosecutor pleaded with the court to halt the proceedings till the new challan is filed. The court approved the prosecution’s petition and postponed the case indefinitely. Earlier this month, an ATC and civil courts had issued non-bailable arrest warrants for Khadim Hussain Rizvi along with other absconding suspects in 14 cases related to the Faizabad sit-in held last year. Shahrukh Arjumand had issued arrest warrants in five cases regarding the Islamabad protests that were registered in the I-9 police station after Rizvi and other suspects refused to appear in court for the hearing.


Tuesday, 17 April, 2018

sC wanTs PeMra free froM govT ConTrol CJP SAYS THOSE USING WOMEN TO PROTEST AGAINST SC VERDICT SHOULD BE ‘HONOURABLE ENOUGH’ TO LEAD FROM THE FRONT BENCH REPLACES MARRIYAM AURANGZEB WITH INFORMATION SECRETARY IN SEVEN-MEMBER COMMITTEE ISLAMABAD

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HIEF Justice of Pakistan (CJP) Mian Saqib Nisar on Monday said that the Supreme Court (SC) wants the Pakistan Electronic Media Regulatory Authority (PEMRA) to become an independent institution, free of the government’s control. During the hearing of the media commission case, the CJP said that this issue should be resolved soon, however, “there is no sword hanging over the government regarding this”. During the hearing, Additional Attorney General (AAG) Rana Waqar told the SC that the government has formed a seven-member committee, including prominent journalist Pakistan Today Editor Arif Nizami, APNS head Hameed Haroon and Pakistan Broadcasters Association Chairman Mian

Amir Mehmood, among others. The committee will be headed by Planning Commission of Pakistan Deputy Chairman Sartaj Aziz. According to details, the committee will form a three-member panel to select the head of PEMRA. Responding to the CJP’s concerns, the AAG assured that the task will be completed within three weeks. The court also replaced State Minister for Information Marriyum Aurangzeb with the information secretary in the committee, as according to the court, the state minister appears to be busy “giving statements” and will have “difficulty taking time out for the committee”. The CJP also asked what has been done to amend PEMRA laws. Justice Sheikh Azmat questioned if there was any clause regulating fake news. “This is a pressing issue. Malaysia has made publication of fake news an offence,” the SC judge said to which Rana said it was imperative to curb the

proliferation of such information. During the hearing of the case, the chief justice remarked that people were made to raise anti-judiciary slogans following the court’s decision to place lifetime ban on politicians disqualified from holding public office under Article 62. The verdict ruled that persons disqualified under Article 62 (1)(f), including former prime minister Nawaz Sharif, can never contest elections again. “I don’t know any lion. These are the real lions,” the chief justice observed pointing towards fellow judges, adding that, “respect should be shown [to us] equal to that given to elders”. The ruling party’s electoral symbol is a lion. Referring to the judiciary’s critics, Chief Justice Nisar added that “they take shelter behind women but if they had any honour they would appear in front themselves”. Justice Sheikh Azmat Saeed observed that the media’s independence is conditional on the judiciary, explaining that if the judiciary is weak then the media will be too. During the hearing, the AAG stated that they are aware that the issues raised by the chief justice will be concluded by him before leaving office. The chief justice responded that this case was not initiated by him but he will conclude it. Justice Saeed remarked that sometimes to close cases one has to ‘close’ people too. The hearing was then

adjourned for two weeks. The media commission case is based on petitions filed by senior journalists Hamid Mir and Absar Alam in 2013 regarding issues faced by the media and the government’s use of ‘secret funds’ to influence media. Alam was later appointed the PEMRA chairman but removed last year on the orders of the Lahore High Court.

Musharraf regime ‘sold’ Pakistanis to US, NA told MPC CHAIRMAN ADMITS 4,000 PAKISTANIS EXTRADITED TO FOREIGN COUNTRIES DELIBERATELY JUSTICE (R) JAVED IQBAL PROMISES TO MEET MANZOOR PASHTEEN TO INQUIRE ABOUT PASHTUN MISSING PERSONS ISLAMABAD Staff REpoRt

Former president and military ruler General (r) Pervez Musharraf secretly extradited as many as 4,000 Pakistanis to foreign countries, mainly to the United States (US), the chairman of Missing Persons Commission (MPC) claimed before National Assembly on Monday. In his briefing to the Standing Committee on Human Rights, Justice (r) Javed Iqbal asserted that as many as 4,000 Pakistanis were handed over to foreign countries, mainly the US. The head of the commission on missing persons — who is also the National Accountability Bureau (NAB) chairman — said that the former interior minister Aftab Ahmad Sherpao was also part of the “secret handover”. Iqbal blamed the Musharraf regime, stressing that it did so for money. “Most of the extradited persons sent to the US in exchange for dollars,” he told the lower house of Parliament. He added that there was no provision in the country’s law for such extraditions. He asked, “As per the law and the Constitution, how could someone secretly hand over the Pakistani nationals to any other country?” “No one including the Parliament ever questioned the role of Musharraf and Sherpao in it,” he regretted. The NAB chief pointed out that certain for-

eign agencies were involved in enforced disappearances and gave a bad name to Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) and Military Intelligence (MI). IQBAL PROMISES TO MEET PASHTEEN: Justice (r) Iqbal promised to meet Manzoor Pashteen, the leader of Pashtun Tahafuz Movement’s (PTM), assuring to address the issue of missing persons in Federally Administered Tribal Areas (FATA). He said, “Pashteen has suddenly emerged on the scene even though the matter of missing persons has been there for years. [But] I will get in touch with Pashteen and look into his list of missing persons.” When Pakhtunkhwa Milli Awami Party lawmaker Naseema Hafeez said the mainstream media had ignored Pashteen and PTM protests, he responded, “Our media does not give much coverage to the issue of missing persons. Pashteen has [at least] received a lot of coverage in the international press and social media.” In 70 per cent of the cases, Iqbal claimed, the missing persons were found to be involved in militancy. If a person is involved in militancy it does not mean that his family too should be considered militants, he said further, complaining that many formerly missing persons had chosen not to inform the commission about their ordeals due to fear. ‘FIGURES OF BALOCH MISSING PERSONS

EXAGGERATED’: The NAB chairman said that the figures of missing persons in Balochistan were often exaggerated. “The numbers mentioned in Balochistan are contrary to the facts,” he said, adding, “A lot of these people have either left those areas or they are living in the mountains.” He said he had asked the Balochistan authorities to provide official figures about the missing persons but they did not respond to his request. “Several groups are operating in the province and many missing persons joined those outfits,” he argued. Justice (r) Iqbal said if he had any authority he would have never allowed such foreign organisations to operate in Pakistan in the first place, defending the ban on international NGOs. “Most of the international NGOs work with the enemy’s agencies under the garb of welfare scheme,” he claimed while supporting his stance by citing the example of Dr Shakil Afridi. MISSING PERSONS’ REPORT: Iqbal also presented a report on missing persons before Zahra Wadood Fatemi-led committee. He said that a complaint was lodged with respect to 4,929 missing persons from 2011 to 2018. “The MPC disposed of 3,219 cases and investigations are underway regarding 1,710 missing persons,” he claimed. Kishwer Zehra, MNA from Muttahida Qaumi Movement-Pakistan, said that 132 persons from her party were missing and their family members remained unaware whether these people were dead or alive. Meanwhile, Human Rights Commission of Pakistan (HRCP) has criticised the country’s human rights record over the past year in a new report released on Monday, saying the nation has failed to make progress on a myriad of issues, ranging from forced disappearances to women’s rights and protection of religious minorities.

LHC temporarily bars airing of Sharifs’ rants cONtINuED fROM pAgE 01 At the previous hearing, Advocate Dogar had also objected to the inclusion of Justice Atir Mehmood on the bench, saying he had previously remained an officebearer of the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI). Justice Naqvi had said that every citizen has right to support any political party and clarified that Justice Mehmood never held any office in the Imran Khanled party. The counsel said it appeared that the bench has already made up its mind about the outcome of the case. Justice Naqvi had censured the lawyer, saying the court has yet not summoned him for pre-

senting his arguments. The thrice-elected premier has been criticising the courts more than anybody else, he had observed. ‘ONLY LEGAL EXPERTS OR LAWYERS CAN COMMENT ON VERDICTS’: Advocate Azhar Siddique, who was representing one of the petitioners, argued before the court on Monday that Article 19-A of the Constitution guarantees freedom of expression and the right to “fair criticism” to every citizen. But Justice Naqvi observed that the constitutional right to fair criticism is conditional to law and regulation. “It can’t be that anyone out there goes about denouncing judicial matters and de-

cisions in the name of ‘fair criticism’,” he remarked, adding that it would make sense for an expert or lawyer to comment on such matters but not everyone can be allowed to do the same. Drawing attention to Article 68, Justice Naqvi said it even prevented the Parliament from criticizing the judiciary and its decisions. “A person dissatisfied at a verdict should file a review petition,” he added. PEMRA’s counsel Advocate Salman Akram Raja argued that the petitioners were raising unnecessary objections against the regulatory body’s authority. He said that PEMRA had rejected an application against alleged anti-judiciary speeches

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on “technical grounds” using its authority. “Should we not take away from this that [PEMRA] allowed airing of anti-judiciary speeches by rejecting the application?” the bench asked. “PEMRA may have been made a minor error [of judgment] by rejecting the application,” the counsel responded. “This is not a minor mistake,” the bench observed. “Instead of taking action, PEMRA sought advice from judiciary. Should publishing of such a notice be considered a minor mistake?” The court reserved its decision after hearing all arguments and subsequently announced a 15-day ban on speeches deemed to be contemptuous. Following the Panama Pa-

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ban on speeches of nawaz, Maryam a right decision: PTI LAHORE Staff REpoRt

Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf termed the ban on anti-judiciary speeches of former prime minister Nawaz Sharif, his daughter Maryam Nawaz and other Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) leaders as a right decision. PTI Central Information Secretary Fawad Chaudhry said that the court has awakened the regulator, the Pakistan Electronic Media Regularity Authority (PEMRA) through its decision. “Institutions do not work in Pakistan which is the biggest problem. The anti-judiciary campaign launched by Sharif and his daughter is a crime in every aspect. It is the responsibility of PEMRA to work without the influence of the government,” he said, adding that it is the responsibility of the politicians to understand that humiliating campaigns against the institutions weakens the state. “The government and PML-N are helping each other in weakening the institutions. The unbearable campaign against the state and its institutions led to the ban,” he added. The PTI reaction came after the Lahore High Court (LHC) on Monday temporarily barred TV channels from airing anti-judiciary speeches made by Sharif, Maryam and other PML-N leaders. A three-member bench, headed by Justice Syed Mazahar Ali Akbar Naqvi, and comprising of Justice Atir Mahmood and Justice Chaudhry Masood Jahangir, had taken up a set of petitions against the alleged anti-judiciary speeches uttered by PML-N leaders. The LHC further directed PEMRA to decide the complaints pending with it regarding the alleged contemptuous speeches within 15 days as well.

nawaz gets nab summons for 21st LAHORE Staff REpoRt

The National Accountability Bureau (NAB) on Monday served the summons for deposed prime minister Nawaz Sharif for appearance before the accountability watchdog on April 21 in an inquiry into alleged misuse of authority for the construction of a road from Raiwind to Jati Umra, the family estate of the ruling party’s ‘leader for life’. According to reports, the NAB officials were not allowed to go inside the palatial estate of the former prime minister to serve the summons personally. They were instead asked to submit the summons at the security checkpoint outside Jati Umra. Nawaz has been summoned by NAB at its Lahore office on April 21.The accountability watchdog believes that the Sharif brothers ‘misused’ their authority to increase the coverage area of the road between Raiwind and their Sharif estate. The bureau claims the road was widened by four feet from 20 to 24 feet and the case involves an alleged misappropriation of Rs125 million. Investigations against the Sharif brothers in the case were initiated by NAB on April 17, 2000. This is not the first time the former PM’s security officials have turned away NAB officials. Last year, during the investigation into the Panama Papers scandal ordered by the Supreme Court of Pakistan, NAB officials were forced by Sharifs’ security personnel to submit the summons and absconder notices for Nawaz’s sons Hussain and Hasan at the checkpost.

pers verdict which led to Nawaz Sharif’s disqualification as premier, the former PM and other PML-N leaders have drawn ire for their criticism of the judiciary. Multiple petitions have been filed in different courts against them over alleged contempt of court. Prime Minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi and federal and provincial ministers of the PML-N have also been made respondents in the petitions. In January, the Islamabad High Court had accepted a contempt of court petition against Sharif and his daughter Maryam for making speeches critical of the judiciary. The Supreme Court, however, dismissed multiple contempt of court petitions against the ousted prime minister last month, saying on one occasion: “Commenting cleanly on a [court] decision is the right of every citizen.”


04 NEWS

Tuesday, 17 April, 2018

Afghan tribesmen kill five Pakistani soldiers KHOST: In a deadly skirmish along the border of Pakistan and Afghanistan, five Pakistani soldiers were killed and one was captured by Afghan tribesmen. Afghanistan’s Khost Governor Hukum Khan Habibi said that the captured soldier and the bodies were handed over to the Pakistani troops on Monday. The dispute arose over Pakistan’s work on a fence intended to span nearly the entire disputed 2,500-km (1,550mile) border, much of it mountainous and porous. Afghan officials alleged that Pakistani troops crossed onto Afghanistan soil, prompting firing on Sunday by border forces and the local tribal force. The two sides later agreed on a ceasefire. Border skirmishes in the area are common, although detention of a foreign soldier is rare. Each national government alleges that the other allows the sheltering of Taliban militants who stage cross-border attacks. The tribesmen handle security in their Zazi Maidan district of Khost. agencIeS

US uses Pakistan like a tissue paper: Imran ISLAMABAD: Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf (PTI) Chairman Imran Khan asserted on Monday that the “US uses Pakistan like a tissue paper”. In an interview with a Russian channel, Imran Khan said that Pakistan sacrificed 70,000 citizens in US’s war against terrorism. “We faced the economic loss of more than $100 million and now when Pakistan is facing a crisis, US is imposing sanctions on it. The US uses Pakistan like a tissue paper. This attitude is unethical,” emphasized Khan. “The aid which the US provides to Pakistan is nothing in front of our loss. The aid came quite expensive for us. Cricket teams stopped coming to Pakistan after our country joined the war of US,” said the PTI chief. He maintained that the US speaks the language of India against Pakistan. Speaking on the matter of Afghanistan, Imran Khan said, “US’s formula to solve the Afghanistan issue with the military has failed. The solution to the matter is only through negotiations. Trump is unable to understand the history of that country.” He urged that Pakistan wants peace and stability in Afghanistan as it will also have an effect on this country. “The US is levelling the blame for its own failure in Afghanistan on Pakistan,” he added. InP

Mamnoon defends tax amnesty scheme ISLAMABAD: President Mamnoon Hussain on Monday defended the tax amnesty scheme, saying that it would help prevent money laundering and bring back the foreign assets for the best interest of the nation. Talking to media persons during his visit to the Directorate General of Immigration and Passports (DGIP), Hussain, who promulgated four ordinances to give effect to the tax amnesty scheme for whitening of local and offshore hidden assets, said similar schemes have been successful in Malaysia and Indonesia. He rejected the opinion that all wealth stashed abroad by Pakistani nationals was achieved through ill-gotten means. “Most assets are a result of hard-earned money of Pakistanis, and it was not correct to target them across the board,” he added, justifying the incentives given to declare foreign assets and pay nominal tax on them. aPP

MIftAh SAyS PrIvAtISAtIon ShoUlD be toP AgenDA for UPCoMIng eleCtIonS ADVISER TO PM SAYS TAX AMNESTY SCHEME INTRODUCED TO GIVE TAX EVADERS A CHANCE TO DECLARE THEIR UNDECLARED WEALTH ISLAMABAD

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dviser to Prime Minister on Finance, Revenue and Economic Affairs Dr Miftah Ismail Monday said that privatisation should be at the top on the agenda of all the political parties’ manifestos for forthcoming general elections and whoever comes in power should have the mandate to freely imple-

ment privatisation reforms agenda without unnecessary opposition. Speaking at a high-level Prebudget Symposium-2018 organised by Sustainable Development Policy Institute (SDPI) in collaboration with FES Pakistan, Dr Miftah Ismail said that to fight poverty significantly, Pakistan has to grow at a rate of 8 per cent. “For that, we have to change the way we have been doing in the past,” he said, adding that the current governance

model is not measuring up to the expectation of the people, which requires changes. “Under tax amnesty scheme, we are giving the tax evaders a chance to declare their undeclared wealth,” he said, adding that with the help of NADRA, we have identified and prepared a list of tax evaders, especially in the real estate and hoping to have a large number of evaders into the tax net. We are enabling a system in which only those can buy properties or plots who are tax filers, otherwise, one cannot buy any piece of land, he added. Speaking later, Planning Commission of Pakistan Deputy Chairman Sartaj Aziz said that owing to

CJP summons Geo owner over non-payment of salaries to workers CJ NISAR SAYS MEDIA MOGUL ‘CAN DO WHATEVER HE WANTS AGAINST ME’ BUT HE WILL HAVE TO EXPLAIN HIS POSITION ISLAMABAD Staff RePoRt

The Supreme Court (SC) on Monday summoned the editor-in-chief of Jang Group, Mir Shakilur Rahman over the issue of the nonpayment of salaries to the group’s employees for the past three months, saying the media mogul “can do whatever he wants against me”, but he would have to explain his position in the matter. A three-member bench headed by Chief Justice of Pakistan (CJP) Mian Saqib Nisar directed Rahman to appear before the court on Tuesday whilst hearing the application filed by Press Association of Supreme Court (PAS) President Tayyab Baloch. The case revolves around the media commission, which was formed by the SC in 2013 to review major points of concern in mass media. While addressing Geo TV’s anchorperson Hamid Mir, who was a petitioner in the media commission case, the CJP remarked that some reporters had approached him with the complaint that their salaries are a paltry Rs12,000 and even that isn’t paid for as long as three months at times.

Justice Nisar asked Mir if someone could formulate their budget in Rs12,000 and suggested that the journalist also raise his voice for such reporters. During the hearing, the CJP asked Mir how much salary he was receiving from Geo TV. The anchorperson chose not to answer directly, saying that his salary too hasn’t been issued for three months. Justice Nisar then ordered Mir Shakilur Rahman, who is also the chief editor and publisher of The News and Urdu daily Jang, to personally appear before the court on Tuesday and explain the non-payment of salaries to media workers employed by his group. Earlier on April 5, the SC directed the owners of private media houses to pay salaries to journalists and media workers till April 30, otherwise, adverse action would be taken against them. During the course of proceedings, representatives of all media houses appeared before the bench in compliance with its earlier orders. The court observed that it was a matter of bread and butter for the journalists and directed the owners of media houses to clear all outstanding dues of their employees.

PM Abbasi attends 24-country military drill in KSA ALJUBAIL aPP

Prime Minister (PM) Shahid Khaqan Abbasi along with several other world leaders on Monday witnessed a grand closing ceremony of an unprecedented 24-country military exercise named Gulf Shield-1. Saudi King Salman bin Abdulaziz received the leaders, defence and foreign ministers, and heads of different armed forces at the event, held in the desert around 140 kilometres north-east of Dammam. PM Abbasi on also held a meeting with King Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud during the closing ceremony of Gulf Shield-1 in which matters pertaining to regional security and mutual interest were discussed. Apart from PM Abbasi, Minister for Defence Khurram Dastgir Khan,

Chief of Army Staff General Qamar Javed Bajwa and senior officials of the three services witnessed the ceremony. Pakistan’s Ambassador to Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (KSA) Vice Admiral (r) Khan Hasham Bin Saddique, Islamic Military CounterTerrorism Coalition (IMCTC) head General (r) Raheel Sharif also witnessed the event. The joint tri-services exercise held along the east coast of Saudi Arabia under the eastern command of Royal Saudi Land Forces was designed to boost coordination and provide a hands-on experience of working together to achieve common objectives. The Saudi defence ministry described Gulf Shield-1 drill as “a turning point in terms of the techniques used in accordance with the most modern military systems in the world.”

The exercise concluded with an impressive show full of fire and fury. The troops demonstrated their skills in coordinated attacks using air, ground and naval forces. The JF-17 fighters of Pakistan Air Force (PAF) pounded the targets to soften up. It was followed by an assault of ground forces in armoured personnel carriers and air cover of the deadly Apache gunships. The firepower show culminated with a parade of troops from participating countries and a display of guns, weapon systems, long-range artillery and missiles used by the Saudi and other regional forces, and a flypast. The king later had a group photograph with the heads of visiting delegations and then hosted a luncheon in their honour. The leaders who attended the ceremony included Crown Prince of

Abu Dhabi Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed Al-Nahyan, Prime Minister of Bangladesh Sheikh Haseena Wajid and presidents of Mali, Chad, and Burkina Faso. Troops of Pakistan Army, Pakistan Air Force C-130, JF17 Thunder Fighter Jets, Pakistan Navy Ships, and commandos from Special Services Group participated in the exercise. The countries participating with troops include those from Pakistan, Sudan, Djibouti, Egypt, UAE, Chad, Guinea, Bahrain, Malaysia, Mauritania, Jordan, Gambia and Kuwait. The countries participating as observers are Bangladesh, Turkey, Qatar, Afghanistan, Burkina Faso, USA, UK, Comoron Islands, Oman and Niger. Pakistan Navy vessels PNS Tipu Sultan, PNS Himmat and Maritime Security Ship Basool participated in the exercise at the Arabian Gulf.

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CPEC related activities, improved energy security and law and order situation, “we are hoping to have more than 6 per cent growth rate this year”. “We have increased the development budget portfolio by three times in last five years”, he said, adding that the development budget was very much inclusive in terms of human and people-centric development. “To sustain growth trajectory, we may require more investments in basic infrastructure development,” he added. SDPI Executive Director Dr Abid Qayyum Sulehri on the occasion said that at the moment when the growth rate is sustainable and growing, there is a dire need of depoliticising Pakistan’s economy.

SC allows Daniyal Aziz to produce defence witness in contempt case ISLAMABAD: The Supreme Court (SC) on Monday allowed Pakistan Muslim League– Nawaz (PML-N) leader and Minister for Privatisation Daniyal Aziz to produce one defence witness to establish his case in the contempt of court proceedings against him. Advocate Ali Raza requested the apex court to summon Kashif Jabbar as his client’s witness on behalf of Daniyal Aziz. A three-judge bench hearing the case, headed by Justice Azmat Saeed Sheikh, however, declined another plea to summon the Director-General Monitoring Haji Adam as a defence witness as Adam has already appeared before the court as a witness for the prosecution. The hearing of the case has now been adjourned until next Tuesday. Earlier on Sunday, Daniyal Aziz produced Javed Hashmi’s news conference to establish his defence in the contempt case against him. Aziz requested the Supreme Court (SC) to summon the transcript of senior politician Javed Hashmi’s speech in which he had referred to PTI chief Imran Khan’s statement that the judiciary “would topple the PML-N government in 2014”. Aziz has pleaded the Supreme Court that defence witness should be directed to place the news conference of senior politician Javed Hashmi, which was held in January 2017. Staff RePoRt

ABBASI TO LEAD DELEGATION AT COMMONWEALTH CONFERENCE IN LONDON ISLAMABAD: Prime Minister (PM) Shahid Khaqan Abbasi is going to lead the Pakistani delegation in the 25th Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting (CHOGM) with a theme “Towards a Common Future”, which is all set to begin in London from April 18 (Wednesday). Pakistan is one of the founding members of the organisation with its current membership consisting of 53 member states, reflecting the diversity of all continents of the world. Participation in CHOGM-2018 would provide an opportunity to highlight the advances made by Pakistan including its transition to a modern and dynamic emerging market, becoming an attractive destination for business, investment and trade. During his stay in London, the prime minister will call on Queen Elizabeth-II and Prince of Wales, and meet the British leadership. It will also provide an opportunity to meet other Commonwealth leaders and exchange views on matters of mutual interest. PPI


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SIndh CabInet approveS new agrICulture, youth polICy KARACHI

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HE Sindh Cabinet meeting was held on Monday under the supervision of Sindh Chief Minister Murad Ali Shah in which some important decisions were taken including the approval of new agriculture policy, new youth policy and also the establishment of two new universities in the province, namely the Shaikh Ayaz University in Shikarpur and Begum Nusrat Bhutto Women University in Sukkur. The new Agriculture Policy was made after employing a series of background studies in the areas of macroeconomic factors such as poverty, gender, climate change, value chain enhancement, resource use efficiency, nutrition and fiscal space utilization in order to make it more efficient. Consultation with farmers was also done before finalising the policy. The agriculture policy has been made for the upcoming years and last until 2030, the same as internationally agreed Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) by the United Nations. However, the various legal, regulator, institutional and expenditure-related

changes set out in the policy would be implemented over a period of two years, 2018-19 to 2019-20. Sharing some of the facts with the cabinet related to agriculture, the CM said that Sindh accounts for 18 percent of the country’s land area, 16 percent of its total cropped area, and contributes about 23 percent to national agriculture economy. He said that the sector has unfortunately not been able to perform to its potential. He added that output was low in 2015 and 2016 which led agriculture growth being negative for the first time in the country. Home & Agriculture Minister Sohail Siyal gave details of the action plan under the new agriculture policy which included the matters such increasing credit flows into crop, livestock and fisheries and for associated rural off-farm activities, development t of new instruments such as warehouse receipts and building linkages formal with informal sources of credit, simplifying the procedure for land use, land transfer and lease for establishment of rural enterprise, reforming the legal and regulatory system governing agriculture and livestock marketing and to redesign the price support system and others.

The cabinet, particularly Local Government Minister Jam Khan Shoro, emphasised on the need of giving more subsidies to the agriculture sector. The cabinet after thorough discussion approved the new agriculture policy. YOUTH POLICY: The Sindh Youth Policy is the central tool to systematically integrate, implement and evaluate all youth development work in the province. It aims at building a youth which is economically sound, socially progressive and politically and politically engaged and who possess appropriate skills and tolerant values of good citizens. Like agriculture policy, it has been formed in consultation with all stakeholders, experts and academicians. The youth policy is based on taking several steps and measures such as the establishment of a youth development commission, establishment of district structure of youth affairs department, centralised information system on youth development and job data base, formation of job bank, establishment of Institute Placement Bureaus (IPBs) through IT interface, establishment of youth venture capital fund, annual innovation competitions, formation of small incubation centers at the universities, entrepreneurship training at universi-

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The water commission head, Justice (r) Amir Hani Muslim, on Monday admonished Karachi Water and Sewerage Board (KWSB) Managing Director Khalid Sheikh over the water crisis in Karachi. Justice (r) Muslim, heading Supreme Court-appointed judicial commission probing the failure of authorities, concerned to supply clean drinking water and improve sanitation facilities in Sindh, expressed his anger at KWSB for failing to provide water to people of the metropolitan city. During the hearing at Sindh High Court (SHC) the commission head asked what is happening in Karachi? Where has all the water gone?He further asked to call MD water board, adding if he is busy then where are others officers?

The commission then summoned KWSB MD Khalid Sheikh, who appeared before the court later. The commission then questioned

Karachi City Courts fire: Initial probe reveals neglect of police, staff KARACHI: A recent investigation report into the April 11 fire, which erupted in the property room of the City Courts Complex in Karachi, on Monday revealed significant neglect in the response of police and court staff. According to the closed-circuit television (CCTV) footage, the fire initially erupted at 1:30am but fire officials were called after the delay of at least one hour— at 2:31am. According to the report, emergency response teams were told to wait at the gate for at least a 40-minute-long period, which further delayed the process of dousing the blaze. The report further said that during this time fire officials attempted to put out the flames through the windows. A fire that erupted in the property room of the City Courts Complex in Karachi last week was brought under control after approximately four hours. The fire was contained after fire brigade vehicles from all around the city were called. According to details, a number of explosions were also heard in the court’s evidence room, before the fire. The court’s evidence room usually contains items, like explosives, which are recovered from arrested suspects. Sindh Inspector General of Police (IGP) AD Khowaja had informed the media that there was no one inside the room when it was engulfed by fire. Staff RePoRt

the MD about the water crisis in the city. “Do you read the newspaper? People are abusing the KWSB. Water is not available even in sur-

KARACHI 05

ties by private sector, crash programme of technical education,; youth led mass awareness campaign, devise models of elected student councils, exposure trips, reactivation of students union and reactivation of boys and girls guides at school and such others. The cabinet discussed various aspects of the policy and approved it. TWO UNIVERSITIES: The cabinet also to upgraded the Shikarpur Campus of Shah Abdul Latif University to give it a status of a full-fledged university. The new university has been named after the name of Shaikh Ayaz, a renowned poet and educationist from Shikarpur. The cabinet approved the draft of Shaikh Ayaz University, Shikarpur Act, 2018, and referred to the Sindh assembly for further approval. The cabinet also approved to establish Begum Nusrat Bhutto Women University draft Bill, 2018. The university will be established with a cost of Rs2710.6 million in Sukkur. The land for the university was received by the government in the form of donation near Arts Council, Sukkur and its compound wall has been constructed. The construction work is in progress and its Vice-Chancellor Parveen Munshi has been appointed to look after the establishment work. The approved draft bill has been referred to Sindh assembly. APPOINTMENT OF NEW PROSECUTOR GENERAL: The cabinet approved the appointment of Ayaz Tunio as the new prosecutor general. In the last cabinet meeting, Fiaz-ul-Hassan was appointed but his notification was stopped as his age was short of the required age of 45 years.

Where has Karachi's water gone, asks water commission head KARACHI

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rounding area of hydrants. People install water lines but they still don’t get water,” Justice (r) Muslim remarked. In his response, Sheikh stated that people who are getting water should be thankful. Upon this, the commission head reprimanded the MD stating that it was his duty to distribute the water to the people and he has destroyed the water distribution process. “We understand the problems of the people,” Sheikh stated adding that people are facing problems related to limited access to the water. On March 20, SC-appointed commission ordered to demolish all new housing schemes if they are found to have broken the laws, governing such projects. The commission also ordered the Sindh Building Control Authority (SBCA) to probe the issue of encroachments alongside rivers and nullahs in the city.

REGULARISATION OF NTS PASS TEACHERS: The Sindh Assembly had earlier passed a bill regarding the regularisation of NTS pass teachers appointed on a contract basis and had sent the summary to Sindh Governor on February 26, 2018, for his assent. However, the governor had returned the bill with the observations that the contractual appointments of teachers under the policy must address the issue on non-availability of teachers at union council and taluka (district) levels or else the required objective of the bill to revive the teacher deprived schools of far-flung areas of Sindh would not be achieved. The cabinet after addressing the observations made by the Governor referred the bills back to the assembly to pass it again. The cabinet decided that the teachers’ transfer/posting would be made in such as way that no school remains deprived of a teacher. PILOT PROJECT OF 10 BUSES: The Transport Department moved a project for the approval of the cabinet regarding fare slab for the operation of AC buses on intracity routes. Transport Minister Nasir Shah told the cabinet that the fare has been proposed in consultation with all the stakeholders at Rs20 for less than five kilometers, Rs30 for five to 15 kilometers and Rs40 for 15 and above kilometers. The changes were approved by the cabinet. SINDH SPORTS BOARD: The cabinet also made some amendments to the Sindh Sports Board. Earlier, it was headed by the governor but now it would be chaired by the chief minister while Sports minister would be its vice-chairman.

Karachi land grabbers threatening noted scientist over plot, ShC told KARACHI Staff RePoRt

The land grabbers in Karachi have been threatening to occupy a plot owned by noted scientist Sibt Murtaza, media reported on Monday. According to details, the Sindh High Court (SHC) resumed hearing a case on Murtaza’s alleged harassment. The scientist, who has worked alongside Dr Abdul Qadeer Khan, moved the court against Law and Cooperatives and Administrator secretaries. Murtaza told the SHC that he bought the plot in 1998 and land grabbers are threatening to occupy it. “The society administrator is in cahoots with the land mafia,” Murtaza said adding, they had been threatening to occupy the plot if they were not paid Rs5 million. The administrator has also reportedly threatened the scientist over the phone. The court then ordered an end to the scientist’s harassment. The SHC also issued directions stopping the termination of Murtaza’s house lease. Last year, Faisal Edhi said that land mafia is ‘encroaching’ the centres of the foundation, forcing it to reduce its operations in rural Sindh. “The land mafia and district administrationincluding local police-are stopping the Edhi foundation from delivering humanitarian services in several districts of Sindh,” Edhi said.

Five cops booked for allegedly killing youth in police custody LARKANA PPI

Local police on Monday registered a First Information Report (FIR) at Illahi Bux police station under Section 302 on statement of Javed Ali Shah against five accused including Station House Officer (SHO) Iqbal Kandhro for allegedly killing 18-year-old Kashif Ali Shah after torturing him in police custody. The deceased was brought dead to the Chandka Medical College Hospital by police, said hospital sources. He was arrested and detained at Illahi Bux police station of Bakrani Taluka on theft charges a few days ago when an influential political person asked

the SHO for his arrest. The heirs of the deceased reached the hospital where they started chanting slogans against police for merciless and brutal beating of victim. The heirs told the media that some goods were stolen from the shop of Jabbar & Ghaffar Siyal in a nearby village (home village of Sindh home minister) and the police arrested deceased Kashif Shah and Ramiz Shah and locked them up. The police released Ramiz Shah and told him to bring Rs20,000 as bribe in order for Kashif to be released, the heirs told the Larkana SSP Tanveer Tunio when he visited the hospital after the body of the deceased reached there.

They further said that the police suddenly informed them that Kashif had committed suicide inside the lockup by hanging himself. They alleged that their young boy has been killed by police in torture, adding that the deceased was an innocent 9th grader. They further alleged that they have been targeted by influential people of Siyal community. SSP took notice of the issue and removed SHO Iqbal Kandhro and WHC Jahan Ali Shah. The heirs have appealed to IGP Sindh and other higher government authorities to order a thorough probe into the killing of their youth.

Fire breaks out at medicine godown in Karachi KARACHI Staff RePoRt

A fire broke out in a medicine godown located in Defence Phase-1 area in Karachi on the early morning of Monday. The media reports stated that

the fire erupted at second and third of floor of the godown which spread very rapidly and engulfed the whole building. Three fire brigade vehicles are busy in bringing the fire under control which is still raging. The cause of the fire is yet unknown.

KARACHI: PVGS Founder Tariq Rathore poses for picture with Pakistani former cricketing legend Javed Miandad at Ultimate Comic Con.


06 FOREIGN NEWS

Tuesday, 17 April, 2018

IrAn SAyS EU hAS ‘DIffErIng vAlUES’ bUt DIAlogUE ShoUlD ContInUE TEHRAN

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RAN said Monday that EU sanctions over its human rights record were due to "differing values" but that they should not derail dialogue with Europe. "We have certain differences of opinion with European countries and the European Union," foreign ministry spokesman Bahram Ghasemi said at a press conference. "That is due in part to differing values between our region and the Islamic Republic of Iran and the European Union, notably as concerns human rights," he said. The EU on Thursday extended by a year sanctions against 82 individuals and an entity accused of "serious human

rights violations in Iran". Ghasemi said long-running dialogue with the EU should continue, fo-

cusing on areas of agreement and in "a constructive atmosphere of goodwill". "In the coming months, there will

be several delegations to discuss different subjects and not just human rights," he said. "I hope that this can happen in a more positive atmosphere." The EU sanctions — first imposed in the wake of the crackdown on the 2009 protest movement in Iran — block exports of equipment "which might be used for internal repression and of equipment for monitoring telecommunications". They are not linked to the 2015 nuclear deal, which lifted many other sanctions linked to Iran’s nuclear programme. Britain, France and Germany, the three European parties to the deal, are working to head off US President Donald Trump’s threat to tear it up and reimpose nuclear-related sanctions by May 12.

EU threatens new Syrian sanctions minus Russia LUXEMBOURG

China issues code of conduct for its armed forces BEIJING AGENCIES

China issued a set of revised regulations on the fundamental rules governing the People's Liberation Army (PLA), which stress Xi Jinping thought on strengthening the armed forces. The regulations included rules on military discipline, training management, soldiers' weight standards, use of mobile phones and the Internet as well as the use of gun-firing salutes to pay respect to martyrs, reports Chinese media on Monday. Xi Jinping, chairman of the Central Military Commission (CMC), signed orders to publish three regulations on the military's interior order, code of conduct and military formation. The three revised regulations, which underlined the absolute leadership of the Communist Party of China (CPC) over the people's armed forces, will take effect from May 1. The regulation on interior order has been revised to enhance the political loyalty of the armed forces, strengthen them through reform and technology and run them in accordance with law. It also underlined a greater focus on combat. It further regulated names of military units and the duties of soldiers. The regulation included revised rules on soldiers' using mobile phones, the Internet, new media, and online shopping. It also stipulated the use of military vehicles and flags, protection of servicemen's vacation rights and efforts to ensure their physical and mental health.

AGENCIES

European Union foreign ministers threatened on Monday new sanctions on Syria over what the West says were chemical attacks on its own people, but held off from joining expected new US punitive measures against Russia. After Britain and France joined the United States in missile salvoes meant to knock out Syrian chemical arms facilities, EU foreign ministers eyed steps to deepen the isolation of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad. “The European Union will continue to consider further restrictive measures against Syria as long as the repression continues,” all 28 foreign ministers said in a statement after their talks in Luxembourg, referring to economic sanctions. They also endorsed the US, British and French air strikes carried out on Saturday that Western powers said were a response to an April 7 poison gas attack on the rebel enclave of Douma and were seen as a way to stop the use of chemical weapons. “It is very important to stress (the strikes are) not an attempt to change the tide of the war in Syria or to have a regime change,” British Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson told reporters on arrival at the meeting. “I’m afraid the Syrian war will go on in its horrible, miserable way. But it was the world saying that we’ve had enough of the use of chemical weapons,” he said. Any new sanctions on Assad would build on a series of such EU measures since 2011, ranging from

Daesh militant killed in US drone strike on militant hideout in Afghanistan KABUL AGENCIES

A Daesh militant was killed in a drone strike conducted by the US military on the terrorist outfit's hideout in the eastern Nangarhar province of Afghanistan on Monday, reported the Afghan media. The 201st Silab Corps of the Afghan Military in the East said the airstrike was carried out in the vicinity of Nazian district, said Khaama Press. Nangarhar is among the relatively calm provinces in the East but the anti-government armed militant groups including Taliban and Daesh militants have attempted to expand their foothold in some remote parts of the province during the recent years. This comes as counter-terrorism operations and airstrikes are underway in different parts of the country against Daesh and other militant and terrorist groups. The 201st Silab Corps of the Afghan Military in the East said Saturday that the US forces based in Afghanistan carried out a series of airstrikes on Daesh hideouts in Khogyani district. The source further added that the militants were targeted in Zawa area of the district by unmanned aerial vehicles and as a result at least six militants were killed.

7 killed, 17 injured in South Carolina prison riot an arms embargo and a ban on dealings with the Syrian central bank to travel bans and asset freezes on Syrian officials, military, business people and scientists accused of developing chemical weapons. But EU diplomats said there was no discussion on Monday to target Russian military figures who, along with Iran, have allowed Assad to regain rebel-held territory in Syria’s seven-year war and who the West accuse of war crimes arising from aerial bombardments and gas attacks on civilians and hospitals. The United States is due to announce new economic sanctions on Russia aimed at companies it alleges were dealing with equipment related to chemical weapons, according to US ambassador to the United Nations, Nikki Haley. However, EU diplomats cautioned that until European governments had more idea of what the United States was planning,

it was not possible to quickly follow suit. In the past, EU measures have sometimes come months after Washington’s. Russia is Europe’s biggest gas supplier and, while the EU has imposed significant sanctions on Moscow’s financial, energy and defence sectors over the crisis in Ukraine, close ties between Russia and some EU members complicate discussions about new punitive measures. Foreign ministers, in their statement, did single out Russia and Iran, as well as Turkey, for blame, calling for an end to the war and humanitarian access to all besieged areas, saying 13.1 million people were in need of assistance, many trapped. “We have to keep pushing to get a ceasefire and humanitarian aid through the (United Nations) Security Council and eventually a peace process,” Dutch Foreign Minister Stef Blok told reporters in Luxembourg.

WASHINGTON AGENCIES

Seven inmates were killed and 17 others injured in a riot at a maximum security prison in South Carolina, the southern US state´s Department of Corrections said Monday. The department said the riot erupted Sunday evening at the Lee Correctional Institution in Bishopville, South Carolina and was brought under control at 2:55 am on Monday. "The incident at Lee CI resulted in 17 inmates requiring outside medical attention and 7 inmates were killed," the department said on its Twitter account. All prison guards and law enforcement authorities who responded were "safe and accounted for." The department had initially described the riot as an "ongoing incident," revealing the scope of the problem hours after its start at 7:15 pm Sunday. "The incident involved multiple inmate on inmate altercations in three housing units," the department said.

Macron clarifies Syria comments, says US and France united PARIS AGENCIES

President Emmanuel Macron sought to clarify his comments on French and US military operations in Syria on Monday, saying both countries were committed to finishing the battle against Daesh and helping the peace process there. Macron said on Sunday evening that Paris had convinced US President Donald Trump to stay engaged in Syria "for the long-term" -- but just hours later the White House responded by saying it wanted US forces there "to come home as quickly as possible". Asked about a difference in position, Macron said both countries had the same military goal but also had the same long-term target of building a stable and peaceful Syria. "We have one military objective and only one: the war against Daesh," he told a press conference.

"The White House is right to recall that the military engagement is against Daesh and will finish the day that the war against Daesh has been completed. France has the same position," he said. "I suggested no change last night." The US, France and Britain carried out joint strikes against Syrian chemical weapons installations on Saturday morning in response to an alleged chemical attack on civilians by regime forces. "I am right to say that the United States, because they decided to carry out this intervention, have realised that our responsibility goes beyond the fight against Daesh and that it was also a humanitarian responsibility on the ground and a long-term responsibility to build peace," Macron added. Referring to a recent promise from Trump to bring home American troops operating in Syria, Macron told his interviewers on Sunday that he had helped

change the US president´s mind. "I assure you, we have convinced him that it is necessary to stay for the longterm," he said. France and other European nations had been alarmed by Trump´s comments about ending America´s presence in Syria, which contradicted messages from US military leaders and raised fears that Daesh could stage a resurgence. Despite a string of military victories that have driven the group back, IS militants are still in control of pockets of land in Syria. Macron also said on Sunday that the Western intervention in Syria on Saturday had driven a wedge between Turkey and Russia, which have been building increasingly close ties -- to the consternation of Europe and the US. Turkish politicians rejected the suggestion on Monday. "We can think differently but they (our relations with Russia) are not so weak that the French president can break

them," Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu said at a press conference with NATO Secretary General Jens

Stoltenberg. "We have strong relations with Russia," Cavusoglu added.


Tuesday, 17 April, 2018

KrEMlIn SAyS StIll hopES for DIAlogUE wIth US DESpItE SyrIA StrIKES MOSCOW

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HE Kremlin on Monday said it still hopes for dialogue with Washington despite US-led strikes on Moscow´s ally Syria last week. "We hope that, when our American colleagues solve their internal issues, some kind of communication will begin despite all the damage to (our) bilateral relations currently imposed by Washington," Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said on Monday. Russian President Vladimir Putin had warned on Sunday that further Western attacks on Syria would bring chaos to world affairs, as Washington prepared to

increase pressure on Russia with new economic sanctions. In a telephone conversation with his Iranian counterpart, Hassan Rouhani, Putin and Rouhani agreed that the Western strikes had damaged the chances of achieving a political resolution in the seven-year Syria conflict, according to a Kremlin statement. “Vladimir Putin, in particular, stressed that if such actions committed in violation of the UN Charter continue, then it will inevitably lead to chaos in international relations,” the Kremlin statement said. The US ambassador to the United Nations, Nikki Haley, told CBS’ “Face the Nation” programme that the United States would announce new economic sanctions on Monday aimed at companies

“that were dealing with equipment” related to Syrian President Bashar alAssad’s alleged chemical weapons use. On Saturday, the United States, France and Britain launched 105 missiles targeting what the Pentagon said were three chemical weapons facilities in Syria in retaliation for a suspected poison gas attack in Douma on April 7. The Western countries blame Assad for the Douma attack that killed dozens of people. The Syrian government and its ally Russia have denied involvement in any such attack. The bombings marked the biggest intervention by Western countries against Assad and ally Russia. French President Emmanuel Macron said on Sunday that he had convinced Trump, who previously said he wanted to

FOREIGN NEWS 07

take US forces out of Syria, to stay for “the long term.” The United States, France and Britain have said the missile strikes were limited to Syria’s chemical weapons capabilities and not aimed at toppling Assad or intervening in the civil war. Macron said in an interview broadcast by BFM TV, RMC radio and Mediapart online news that he had convinced Trump to focus on the chemical weapons sites. The White House pushed back against Macron’s comments about Trump’s intentions for US forces.

Group accused of gang raping, killing eight-year-old Indian girl pleads not guilty India moves to reduce its reliance on russia's defence imports NEW DELHI AGENCIES

India is reducing its dependence on Russia for critical defence programs, with the joint venture BrahMos missile set to be guided by a locally-developed target tracking device in the next year. India’s defence scientists have developed a new indigenous system that identifies missile targets to replace the Russian-developed seeker on all future BrahMos, Sudhir K. Mishra, the chief executive officer of BrahMos Aerospace said. "Our objective is to make use of the Indian seeker on all future BrahMos missiles," Mishra said in an interview on the sidelines of India’s defence show, DefExpo, on Wednesday in Chennai. "The Russians say if the Indians supply a cheaper, cost-effective and reliable seeker, then let us take it from India." There are also plans to use a locally-made warhead on the missile, he said, without specifying a time frame. Russia accounted for 68 per cent of India’s arms import from 2012 to 2016, according to Stockholm International Peace Research Institute. It’s been the largest defence supplier to India since the 1960s when the MiG-21 supersonic fighter jets were bought to equip the Indian Air Force. These were then license-produced at the state-held Hindustan Aeronautics Limited until recently, when India began to junk the MiG jets and plan a complete phase out of the aircraft by 2022.

Indian army man joins hizbul Mujahideen SRINAGAR AGENCIES

“The US mission has not changed — the president has been clear that he wants US forces to come home as quickly as possible,” White House spokeswoman Sarah Sanders said. “We are determined to completely crush ISIS [Daesh] and create the conditions that will prevent its return.” she said. “In addition we expect our regional allies and partners to take greater responsibility both militarily and financially for securing the region.”

May, Macron face lawmakers angry over Syria strikes

KATHUA

LONDON

AGENCIES

AGENCIES

Eight men accused of raping and murdering an eight-year-old girl pleaded not guilty on Monday to the horrific crime that has sparked revulsion and brought thousands to India's streets in protest. Four police and a Hindu temple custodian are among those accused of gang raping and killing a Muslim girl from a poor tribe in Jammu and Kashmir state where the highlycharged case has stoked long-simmering religious tensions. The accused men appeared in court in the city of Kathua on Monday for the first time since being arrested in February for the girl's murder. Ankur Sharma, a lawyer for the accused, said the men had pleaded not guilty and were willing to take a lie-detector test. The court adjourned the case for procedural reasons, he added. “The court has directed that chargesheet copies should be provided to all the accused. The next date of hearing is April 28,” Sharma told reporters.

British Prime Minister Theresa May and French President Emmanuel Macron on Monday faced anger from lawmakers for conducting air strikes with the United States in Syria in both leaders' first major military actions since coming to power. May said lawmakers were right to hold her to account for her actions, after the premier proceeded with the strikes without prior parliamentary approval. "But it is my responsibility as prime minster to make these decisions. And I will make them," May, 61, said of the intervention. Opposition Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn called for new legislation to stop governments launching military action without lawmakers' backing in most circumstances. "The prime minister is accountable to this parliament, not to the whims of the US president," he told a packed chamber. Following Washington's military lead remains a sensitive subject in Britain, where memories of participation in the US-led invasion of Iraq in 2003 are still raw. May, in office since July 2016, rejected the notion that she took orders from US President Donald Trump, saying her decision was based on Britain's national interest. "We have not done this because President Trump asked us to do so. We have done it because we believed it was the right thing to do," she said. But a poll showed scant public support for the move. The poll by Survation for the Mail on Sunday showed 36 percent in favour of Britain's participation in the air strikes, 40 percent against and the remainder undecided. Of the survey's 2,060 respondents, 54 percent also agreed with the statement that May "should have held a parliamentary debate and vote before intervening militarily in Syria." May's speech was followed by a heated debate during which some MPs called on Britain to welcome more Syrian refugees — rejected by May — and continue the diplomatic push to end the seven-year conflict. Outside the Houses of Parliament, the Stop the War coalition once chaired by Corbyn was due to hold a demonstration. The group said the strikes "will have done nothing to end the war" and "risked dramatically widening" the conflict. In France, Macron has faced similar criticism for attacking Syria without consulting the legislature. He defended the move as well as his constitutional powers in a TV interview on Sunday. "This mandate is given democratically to the president by the people in the presidential election," said Macron, who became France's youngest president in May 2017. Macron, 40, has been criticised from both right and left. National Front leader Marine Le Pen has accused Macron of failing to show any evidence on the use of chemical weapons by the Syrian regime to justify the strikes. JeanLuc Melenchon, head of the hard-left France Unbowed party, has also condemned the strikes, while the leader of the centre-right Republicans party, Laurent Wauquiez, said he "did not believe in punitive strikes."

The girl was kidnapped, drugged and raped over five days at the Hindu temple in January before being strangled and bludgeoned with a rock. The case ignited moral outrage and mass demonstrations across India after details of her gruesome death were made public by police last week. The temple's custodian, retired public servant Sanji Ram, is accused of conspiring with four police officers, a friend, his son and a juvenile nephew to kill the girl and destroy crucial evidence. Scenes of

lawyers trying to stop police from entering court to file charges against the accused — all Hindus — evoked disgust and a warning from India's highest court against any attempts to obstruct justice. The case has heightened fears of communal tensions in Jammu and Kashmir, India's only Muslim-majority state. The accused allegedly plotted the crime to drive the nomadic Muslim community from a part of Jammu, a southern region that is Hindu dominated.

China, Japan vow ‘new starting point’ in ties TOKYO AGENCIES

Asian rivals China and Japan on Monday pledged a "new starting point" for bilateral ties, vowing close co-operation amid a flurry of diplomacy on the North Korean missile threat and global trade tensions. Welcoming Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi for a rare three-day visit, Japanese Premier Shinzo Abe called for warmer relations between the two countries and said they should work together on North Korea. Abe said he would be visiting the United States for talks with President Donald Trump to seek the "complete and irreversible denu-

clearisation" of North Korea and added "we want to co-operate with China." "We hope to develop a strategic, mutually beneficial JapanChina relationship in various fields," said Abe. After meeting Abe, Wang told reporters that Beijing wanted to place "Sino-Japanese cooperation at a new starting point" and cooperate on energy, financial and environmental issues. Tokyo is battling to stay relevant amid a string of summits on North Korea´s nuclear programme in which Beijing is likely to be a major player. With this in mind, Japan is pushing to host a trilateral meeting between Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, Chinese Premier Li Keqiang and South Ko-

An Indian army man who had gone missing from south Kashmir earlier this month has joined the Hizbul Mujahideen terror group, police officials said today. Mir Idrees Sultan, who was posted in the Army's Jammu and Kashmir Light Infantry (JAKLI) unit, joined the group yesterday, a police official said. The official said Mir had gone missing from Shopian. He joined the group along with two locals who had also been missing. The Army maintains that he is "missing" and has no confirmation about his joining the terror outfit. According to the police, Mir was posted to Jharkhand and was unhappy about the move.

CMYK

rean President Moon Jae-in. Abe said this would be held "after Golden Week", a series of national holidays that ends on May 6. Bilateral visits by Abe and Chinese President Xi Jinping are also being planned. China demonstrated its significant influence over its reclusive ally when Xi hosted the North´s leader Kim Jong-un and his wife in Beijing last month. With Moon and Trump also preparing to meet Kim, reported efforts by Japan to reach out to Pyongyang have gone ignored. Wang said he and Abe spoke about North Korea. "At present, the nuclear issue on the peninsula has clearly eased from a situation of a crippling crisis and has returned to the direction of denuclearisation," Wang said, reiterating Beijing´s call for a political and peaceful settlement. Meanwhile, Japan and China are targets of Trump´s steel and aluminium tariffs, with Beijing also targeted with a further heavy levy. Japan´s Foreign Minister Taro Kono and Wang did not specifically mention the proposed US trade policies, as its implementation and consequences were still unclear. But they noted the global economy has dramatically changed during the eight years the bilateral dialogue has stalled.


08 COMMENT

Tuesday, 17 April, 2018

Milords, should justice reek of enmity?

The mystery needs to be unravelled

Is there more to it than meets the eye?

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He firing at the residence of a SC judge supervising an accountability court proceedings against Nawaz Sharif and his family members is a serious incident. The attack has been strongly condemned by the PM, Punjab CM, PML-N leadership, opposition parties, the legal fraternity and the ISPR. A JIT comprising high ranking police officers and representatives of ISI, MI and IB has been formed to investigate the attack in order to identify the culprits and award them the punishment that they deserve. While the JIT investigation will take time, the PML-N has already been declared the real culprit by the PTI, its arch rival in Punjab. The PML-N’s past record vis-a-vis Supreme Court judges who were considered antagonistic by the party leadership is a part of history now and will continue haunt it for a long time to come. Instead of improving the party’s record by showing restraint this time, some of the hot-headed PML-N leaders indulged in irresponsible outbursts against the judiciary. One of them has already been sentenced for contempt of court while cases are being pursued against others. If the leaders can lose control over themselves, some of the workers too could follow suit. This aspect of the matter needs to be thoroughly probed. equally important is to investigate the baffling and enigmatic circumstances surrounding the attack. The judge’s house is a short distance from the Sharif brothers’ house in Model Town. It is a high-security area guarded by a heavy contingent of police, the Dolphin Squad, the Police Quick Response Unit, Model Town’s own security personnel and, to top it all, the Punjab Rangers. Punjab Safe City Authority CCTV cameras are also installed in the area. There is a Ranger’s post in front of the gate of the Judge’s house where a bullet has left its mark. The culprits conducted two attacks within hours and mysteriously disappeared in thin air. Coming as the firing does in the midst of rising political temperature and a tussle between the administration and the institutions, the plot thickens with the incident.

Record-breaking or back-breaking?

$13 billion, Pakistan’s planned borrowing for 2018-19

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AINTAININg the illusion of an overall economic equilibrium, while holding out hope of credible financial upturn in the future will test the cerebral skills (such as they are) of our rulers and makers of next years’ fiscal budget to the utmost, demanding employment of creative juices, outof-the-box thinking and some lucky breaks. All the well-meaning, if not well-laid, plans, dubious statistics and unrealistic monetary goals set out in the annual futile ‘budget blues’ exercise fall apart at the initial stages, with rebellious traders staging successful protests against imposition of any tax measure targeting their deeply lined pockets. A list of chronic ills plaguing the country’s economy is like listening to a worn out old phonographic record, with its recurring current account and trade deficits, always depleted foreign exchange reserves, rocketing external liability, low tax collection, uncompetitive manufacturing cost, pathetic exports, reckless borrowing and manifold increasing imports. So, commenting on the economy is akin to asking questions whose answers we know in advance. If it is not an ongoing IMF programme, the sponging spree may involve the World Bank, Asian Development Bank, Islamic Development Bank, euro/Sukuk bonds, China, and short-term loaning from foreign commercial banks. Repeated warnings voiced by international lending institutions have gone unheeded through lack of political drive and will to take action. Now the chickens are coming home to roost, and simply to remain afloat and fulfill maturing obligations, the 2018-19 budget on April 27 reportedly envisages record-high borrowing in one fiscal year, $13 billion, a dubious distinction. Last year, the figure was $10.4 billion, but in only eight months the government has guzzled $7.3 billion, and during its nearly five years in action, or inaction, the country’s external debt is projected to reach $93.2 billion from $61 billion in 2013 by June! The World Bankon Sunday in its report titled, ‘South Asia economic Focus Spring 2018’, also pinpointed Pakistan’s dangerously widening macroeconomic imbalances, despite anticipated 5.8 percent gDP growth in 2018, and urged reforms implementation to restore and preserve stability and sustainability. Unfortunately, it is the vulnerable common people who bear the brunt of government incompetence and indecision.

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

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And how unbridled power is always a prelude to disaster Shah Nawaz mohal

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TRANge are our times for we understand nothing yet know everything. Strange is our curiosity for we look for answers of questions that do us no good. Strange is our vision for we refuse to see all the grey present in and around our black/white understanding of the world. Strange is our wisdom that seeks solace in parcelling out ‘exemplary justice’ without weeding out the root causes of our discontent. Strange are our ways for we aim to drag down heaven to earth while we turn our home into an inferno fit for Faustus. I welcome you all, dearest sirs and ma’ams, to our land of the strange where hopes become despair, where every affection ends up poisoning its giver and its recipient, where tribalism holds sway over everything pristine, everything sublime in an individual. Amidst all these realities and truths, our Honourable Lordships have handed down the ‘final’ verdict. They’ve thrown Mian Muhammad Nawaz Sharif out of the arena. The mighty five have also snatched his boxing gloves, told the ‘organisers’ that he be banished from the stadium as well, and lastly, made sure that Nawaz is packaged, boxed in, turned into a bundle, and ready to be dispatched either outside the country or inter him alive into a jail. And they’ve done all of it as per the provisions of the law and the constitution. They acted in strict accordance with dictates of consciousness keeping in view the greater good of miserystricken, poor, malnourished and neglected common man. Well, this is what they say. And that is not the whole truth. Rather it is the superficial and surface understanding one can glean from their remarks and judgments. What transpires in their heart of hearts, what end they are striving towards, and what moti-

vates them and why this singular devotion to the cause of ‘gaveling out’ House of Sharif for many remains obvious and moral. And for the rest elusive and hidden, as for them it is crystal clear that behind the spick and span facade of justice, fair play, accountability and rule of law lies the wishes, orders and coercion by powers-that-be who rule the roost in our land. The once silent, solemn and meek Supreme Court, famous for being the second fiddle to the person in power and approver of every incoming dictator, died the moment when CJ Iftikhar Chaudhry raised the banner of defiance against Mush. Chaudhry slayed the monster called Musharraf and, no surprise here, became the monster in his place. Chaudhary’s adrenaline-driven judicial activism remained issueless for three years and found its heir in the shape and guise of CJ Nisar. And in what has become their signature pick and choose style, condemning the fall guy while being cowered by the holy cows. In its recent judgment SC held that khakis could not be removed from their service over non-disclosure of financial assets. While their Honourable Lordships had disqualified lawmakers for lifetime on the basis of same and identical offences. Perhaps justice is not as blind as we expect or suppose it to be. Hasnaat Malik, a very seasoned Supreme Court reporter of Express Tribune, has aptly summed up the permanent disqualification verdict of SC: A murderer is qualified to contest election after five years but someone will be disqualified for life on the basis of just mere omission regard-

Amidst all these realities and truths, our Honourable Lordships have handed down the ‘final’ verdict. They’ve thrown Mian Muhammad Nawaz Sharif out of the arena

Dignity of office? Somebody remind them

Rabia ahmed

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judge should always behave in such a manner as to preserve the dignity of the office and the impartiality, integrity and independence of the judiciary. Global Code of Judicial Ethics 2015 Approved at the International Conference of Judicial independence

There are after all varying degrees of education and values among a country’s population, with resultant questionable professional standards. It is when officials in positions of authority and responsibility also subscribe to those questionable professional standards that the country is in trouble. Sadly, it appears to be an increasing tendency for these officials, persons you would think were educated and trained beyond such behaviour, to overstep their remit, and to do so in an exceedingly ill-considered manner. And most people love it. Which is probably why these officials do what they do, to play to the gallery, like the POTUS who shoots absurd Tweet, after Tweet, after Tweet, topping it with ‘Mission Accomplished!’ after a bombing spree. In the recent exchange between the CJP and the minister of railways, if readers were able to retain their breakfast long enough to scroll down to the comments, they’d have found several Karachi – Ph: 021-35381208-9

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ing assets details on his nomination papers. Adding that it is for the parliament and not the courts to prescribe or attempt to give a time period for disqualification under Article 62 (1) (f) of the Constitution. The Court under CJ Nisar reminds me of an old anecdote that says anger is very intelligent as it knows who can be subdued and terrified and in front of whom it must remain dormant and in check. Dearest sirs and ma’ams, the same perfectly fits on our Lordships. They know that everything is game if it concerns civvies, their wheeling and their dealings. Alas, their feathers burn when the matter is about khakis or Maulanas hellbent to challenge state, jam its roads, and have their own way. Their seriousness in putting their own house in order can be amply gauged by the fact that all such initiatives are nowhere to be seen on ground. The direly needed reforms in the archaic laws and outdated regulations that govern the inner workings of judiciary are stuck in limbo. Remember, the ancient Juvenal’s Quis custodiet ipsos custodes? (Who watches the watchmen). The answer, dearest sirs and ma’ams, is what everybody knows, hardly anyone utters, and no one dares question. The question, however, lingers in the shadows. Historians of future will ask one simple question; Milords, why justice during your reign reeked of enmity and why some were spared while others were turned into pathetic examples?

‘Shabaashes’ for the Head of the Pakistan Judiciary, and several comments expressing the wish that ‘May the Almighty Bless the CJP’. Amen. Although ‘May the judiciary rest in peace,’ would be more applicable. In case it slipped his mind in the course of his jihad with the minister’s father, as mentioned by the CJP, one may remind the Honourable Chief Justice of Article 3.5 quoted above, which says that judges should always behave in a manner consistent with the dignity of the office and the impartiality, integrity and independence of the judiciary. Although whether there is any dignity, impartiality, integrity and independence left in that branch of government, or any other, is debatable. Seeing that the minister of railways is a public servant, may one also remind him of general standards expected of a public servant? Those standards do not include boasting about who his father was. No one cares, or at least no one should care. The only recommendation required is that public servant’s own performance, which is what the CJP has been calling into question in such a refreshing manner. The incident leads to some interesting points, namely the inability of the public to understand the difference between justice and interference. And the inability of both the public and the judiciary to appreciate the importance of due process. While it is important for justice to be done, and what is as important, for justice to be seen to be done, the matter does not end there. A certain method must be followed by means of which an

Islamabad – Ph: 051-2204545

Shah Nawaz Mohal is a law graduate and member of staff, Islamabad Bureau.

offender must be dealt with, following the prescribed procedure. This is called due process. If this is ignored it in itself leads to injustice. The honourable chief Justice crossed several lines in the course of taking notice of the ministry of railway’s performance, when for example he said he was doing ‘jihad’ in this matter. No sir, this is not a personal matter, you are simply doing your job. The CJP asked the minister if the court was supposed to allow the minister to remain in his office without contesting elections for twelve years. It is not up to the honourable chief justice or the court to ‘allow’ a government official to be in office or not. It is up to the people who elect the government to deal with such matters. One expects the CJP to be aware of this. The chief justice also slipped up when he praised Lalu Prasad Yadav of India, and held him up as an example. The said Mr Yadav has been convicted of being implicated in three scams, and has recently been jailed for the third. Probably the CJP’s most vulgar stance was when he made oblique references to some place the minister had visited some days ago, to his ‘body language’ at that place, and the ‘type of tea’ he had there. Whither dignity of office? He also accused the minister for not coming up to the standard of his father, and mentioned that he, the CJP and the minister’s father had ‘done Jihad together.’ The term jihad keeps cropping up. Where does it come into the matter of the performance of the Pakistan railways and its officials?

In case it slipped his mind in the course of his jihad with the minister’s father, as mentioned by the CJP, one may remind the Honourable Chief Justice of Article 3.5 quoted above, which says that judges should always behave in a manner consistent with the dignity of the office

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Web: www.pakistantoday.com.pk

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Rabia Ahmed is a freelance columnist. Read more by her at http://rabiaahmed.blogspot.com

Email: editorial@pakistantoday.com.pk


COMMENT 09

Tuesday, 17 April, 2018

Editor’s mail Divine intervention via Chief Justice Pakistan

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

THe judicial intervention by Chief Justice of Pakistan on issues relating to public welfare has brought hope to millions who lost faith in system. It is failure of paid civil bureaucracy and successive elected or military governments, in performing their designated roles, which added to miseries of middle class and poor law abiding citizens of this country. When state institutions like CDA start duping citizens of Pakistan, than frustration and miseries of those who have been deprived of their hard earned savings drive them to desperation. I appeal to CJP to kindly take Suo Motu notice of this gross miscarriage of justice. In 1989 the CDA sought applications from general public for balloting of plots in e12/4 and successful applicants were issued Allotment of Residential Plots on 14 Oct, 1990 after payment of installments with last installment to be paid at time of possession. Almost 29 years have elapsed and I alongwith other unfortunate citizens of this country who were promised possession still wait, hoping against hope that justice may finally be done. In meantime thousands of elite, have benefited from numerous CDA allotment schemes, built houses or sold their plots, but nobody seems to be bothered about these unfortunate victims who are waiting that someday the promised plot would be given to them. NIghAT MALIk Lahore

The legal side to Syrian war Best focus on the peace process

YaSmeeN aftab ali

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He US and its allies struck civil and military facilities in Syria, violating the UN Charter and international law, rightly said Putin recently leading to huge fallout on international relations. The prohibition on the use of force is enshrined within Article 2(4) of the UN Charter 1945. The threat or use of force against the territorial integrity and political independence of another state in their international relations, in any manner which is inconsistent with the UN Charter, is prohibited. As per the International Court of Justice in Nicaragua v USA (1986), this prohibition also represents customary international law. The integrity of a sovereign state is also protected by Article 2(7) of the Charter, which states that the UN cannot intervene in matters which are essentially within the domestic jurisdiction of a state. There are certain exceptions to the rule: Firstly, Article 51 of the UN Charter, which allows for individual and collective self-defense against an armed attack by another state. While USA and its allies have justified the use of force against non-state actors in Syria on the basis of self-defense, it is difficult to see how this applies to Assad’s regime, who has not carried out chemical weapons attacks against other states—instead, these have been used against inhabitants within Syrian sovereign territory (though on current case it has been claimed by some that the attack was not by his regime). Russia’s veto to stop investigation in inquiry of latest chemical attack in Syria however only reduces UN’s stature to look towards an inclusive peace process for Syria. Professor Mary ellen O’Connell says ‘No-

body thinks Assad could use chemical weapons on Americans.’ This recent attack cannot be justified, therefore, on the basis of self-defense. Secondly, use of force is permissible where it is authorised by the United Nations Security Council (UNSC). Under Chapter VII, the UNSC may make recommendations or binding decisions when dealing with situations which endangers international peace and security. The UNSC determines whether there is a threat to the peach or breach of peace, Article 39. However, no such UNSC authorisation can be relied upon to justify this attack—the UNSC is currently paralysed on the Syrian crisis, with Russia supporting Assad, as opposed to USA, Uk and France. The concerns expressed by President Trump appear to be humanitarian in nature, with the attack being justified due to the chemical weapons used by Assad against Syrian civilians. Senate majority leader Mitch McConnell said the US operation was “robust” and “clearly well-considered”. What does international law say about the use of force (in the absence of self-defense or UNSC authorisation) on the basis ofhumanitarian reasons? First: The doctrine of humanitarian intervention — intervening on the basis of humanitarian concerns — does not pose a problem where there is UNSC authorisation. Chapter VII authorisation rendered lawful the intervention in Somalia, Bosnia-Herzegovina, and the French military troops which intervened in Rwanda only when the UNSC approved of such intervention. The problem arises in situations like Syria— where intervention is on the basis of humanitarian concerns in the absence of such authorisation. The Yugoslav government carried out a policy of ethnic cleansing which resulted in the persecution of Albanian kosovars. The relevant UNSC resolutions did not expressly allow for military intervention— however, NATO responded with the use of force and by academics such as Alina kaczorowska-Ireland, this was accepted as morally

Syria has eerily begun to resemble Kosovo, with a return to the discredited doctrine of humanitarian intervention. This is a problematic doctrine because it essentially relies upon a subjective assessment about the internal policies of another state

justified but legally problematic. kosovo highlighted the need for a new approach—after all, the prohibition on the use of force is an integral cornerstone of international law and cannot be circumvented for arbitrary military interventions. This brings us to the doctrine of responsibility to protect (R2P) which superseded the doctrine of humanitarian intervention. Secondly R2P was devised by the International Commission on Intervention and State Sovereignty (ICISS) – a body set up in 2000 under the auspices of the Canadian government to consider how to respond to gross human rights violations. Unlike humanitarian intervention which focuses exclusively on military intervention, R2P’s preventive principle places emphasis on non-coercive measures to be applied first, with military intervention being a measure of last resort. Syria has eerily begun to resemble kosovo, with a return to the discredited doctrine of humanitarian intervention. This is a problematic doctrine because it essentially relies upon a subjective assessment about the internal policies of another state. The possibility for abuse is therefore immense. It must be remembered that this cry of ‘bombing Assad’ essentially means carrying out air strikes which will inevitably kill a number of innocent Syrian civilians. No state wishes to risk its own citizens’ lives or financial resources with no gain to itself. It is no coincidence that NATO, in kosovo, largely carried out air bombardments, so that NATO troops would face minimal risk. Anne Orford (2003) notes that this resulted in the estimated deaths of 500 Yugoslav citizens. This is counter-productive. Further, this allows the international community to cherry-pick which regions to intervene in. Then United Nations Secretary general kofi Annan had stated that such measures must be ‘fairly and consistently applied’ regardless of the region of nation. Realistically speaking, this is impossible. The international community was willing to engage in kosovo but failed to take quick action in Rwanda. Attack on a state without approval of the UN Security Council is seen to be unlawful and illegitimate. Unfortunately UN has become a spectator in the theatre of global violence. UN must convince US and her allies to focus on peace process in Syria instead of going for direct confrontation with may lead to yet another world war.

Professor Mary Ellen O’Connell says ‘Nobody thinks Assad could use chemical weapons on Americans.’ This recent attack cannot be justified, therefore, on the basis of self-defense

Yasmeen Aftab Ali is a lawyer, academic and political analyst. She has authored a book titled ‘A Comparative Analysis of Media & Media Laws in Pakistan.’ She can be contacted at: yasmeenali62@gmail.com and tweets at @yasmeen_9

Agriculture sector growth PAkISTAN is essentially supposed to be an agricultural country though industrial sector also makes substantial contribution towards growth of national economy. It is good to note that the agriculture sector growth is showing somewhat improved performance during current financial year as compared to the last couple years figures. According to the reports in the print media, the agriculture sector of the country is estimated to grow somewhat appreciably by 3.81 per cent during the current financial year 2017-18 against growth figures of 2.07 per cent in 2016-17 and just 0.15 in 2015-16. Within the agriculture sector, the crops sector has witnessed 3.83 per cent growth with important crops growing by 3.57 per cent and other crops by 3.33 per cent according to the latest data available for six to eight months and on that basis projected for the whole year. The cotton ginning sector, as per the provisional gross Domestic Product gDP) estimates, is on top among the contributors as it has grown by as high as 8027 per cent followed by Cotton ginning sector 5.58 per cent, livestock sector 3.76 per cent,the forestry sector 7.17 per cent , fishing sector 1.63 per cent all showing appreciable improvements over the last couple of years. The provisional gDP estimate for the current fiscal 2017-18 has been estimated at 6.79 per cent and additionally, the industrial and services sectors growth has been recorded at 5.80 per cent and 6.43 per cent respectively. ‘This is quite commendable performance by all sectors as compared to rather disappointing growth figures for the previous two years but still there is room for still better performance by all sectors which will resultantly boost the national economic growth appreciably, please. MUhAMMAD MURTAZA ZEEShAN Lahore

Flaws in educational sectors BALOCHISTAN, being a highly well resourceful province of Pakistan where 12,980 schools are built including 56,400 posts for teachers. According to the report, 7,941 teachers are not on their posts due to which the punctual teachers are suffering with the overloaded classes. But shockingly, the associations do not take any pragmatic initiatives towards those ghost teaching staff. Finally, I just urge to the education department of Balochistan that should do the investigation against non teaching staff and start development on the educational system of Balochistan. IMRAN BADEER Turbat kech

Fake medicines everywhere! IN reference to the widespread news regarding large number of medicines being declared as substandard by Punjab lab, I would like to highlight the seriousness of this issue. Some of the medicines which have been declared substandard in the report are the ones commonly used in almost every household. I regularly purchase medicines for my father as he is a Cardiac and Diabetic patient and the fact that fake and substandard medicines are now abundantly available really disturbed me. According to the published report medicines having only 20 per cent efficiency are likely to cause more harm than any good to patients. This for me is an alarming situation as how can I ensure that the medicines which my father is consuming are authentic and of best quality. In such dire circumstances, I came across an ‘Access Program’ by a Swiss based pharmaceutical company which will provide access to premium quality and authentic medicines for just $1 a month for treatment. These medicines are FDA approved imported medicines, available on highly affordable rates. Not only will this provide relief to nonaffording patients but in fact address the question of authenticity of the medicine as well. I encourage everyone to avail this program and prevent our loved ones from falling prey to substandard and spurious drugs. kIRAN FARooq karachi


10 BUSINESS

Tuesday, 17 April, 2018

inflation in Pakistan to rise next fiscal year, says World Bank LAHORE

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MOHAMMAD FAROOQ

HE World Bank on Sunday in its report “South Asia Economic Focus, Jobless Growth” projected inflation to rise in the financial year 2018-19 and remain high till FY20 due to moderate increase in international oil prices and exchange rate passthrough to domestic prices. According to WB, Pakistan’s economy is projected to grow at 5.8 percent for FY 2017-18 driven by improvements in energy supply, CPEC related infrastructure projects, and consistent private consumption growth. But it said as the country’s growth was accelerating, macroeconomic imbalances were widening and remained a major worry for the near-term economic outlook. Also, these recent economic developments have helped to grow the country’s GDP growth by 0.8 percentage points over the previous year, touching 5.4 percent in FY17. WB said this was largely driven by marked improvements in the agricultural, services sector with nominal recovery in the industrial sector too. The report highlighted private sector growth was driven by a low-interest rate environment which provided sup-

port to businesses. And the WB recommended various short-term measures would be needed to rectify domestic and external imbalances, which need to be augmented by the enactment of medium-term reforms. Inflation for first 8 months of FY 2017-18 (July-March) was recorded at 3.8 percent against 4.0 percent in same period of last financial year, well below the target of 6 percent for FY18, said WB. It added, the balance of payments remained under pressure because of burgeoning current account deficit which reached 3.4 percent in first eight months (July-March) of FY 2017-18. Exports after registering contracting for three successive financial years, showed signs of recovery in FY18, but high import growth contributed to an increase in the trade deficit, said the report. The fiscal deficit, according to WB remained somewhat subdued during the first half of FY 2017-18, touching 2.2 percent of GDP compared to 2.5 percent in first half of FY17. 17.5 percent growth was recorded in tax revenues of Federal Board of Revenue (FBR), touching Rs1,992 billion against Rs1,696 billion, said WB. The report stated public debt to GDP ratio also worsened to 65.7 percent of GDP by end of first half of FY 201718 against 64.5 percent during first half

Government likely to allocate 221bn for subsidies in 2018-19

of FY17. Also, WB predicted after the general election, expected policy revisions to rectify for macroeconomic balances are forecasted to contribute to a slowdown in growth in FY19 because of fall in investment and domestic consumption. Furthermore, “growth is expected to recover in FY20 and reach 5.4 percent. This recovery is contingent upon restoring and preserving macroeconomic stability, as well as steady progress in implementing reforms which tackle key growth constraints. The outlook assumes that oil prices will increase moderately but remain low and that political and security risks will be managed,” said WB. Current account deficit is expected to remain under stress as the trade deficit is forecast to stay at an elevated level during FY 2018-19. WB predicted rising exchange rate flexibility would assist exports and imports may subdue during FY 2018-19. However, remittances are expected to partially finance the current account deficit but lower growth in GCC countries could impact migrant employment options and rise in remittances, said WB. In the medium-term, WB said it is expected multilateral, bilateral, privatedebt and foreign direct investment (FDI) inflows would remain the main financing sources in the medium term.

Regarding external financing needs, the WB predicted the government would continue accessing international markets. It added the fiscal deficits are forecast to narrow in FY 2018-19 as authorities could revise macroeconomic policies. “The adjustment will come initially on the back of scaling down in investment spending both at the federal and provincial level. However, bolstering of revenues because of expanding the tax base and other administrative measures will support fiscal consolidation,” said the report. WB expressed concerns over the balance of payments position, which it said was very “vulnerable” at the present level of forex reserves. The forthcoming general election could cause a delay in pivotal policy changes such as fiscal consolidation and increased exchange rate flexibility, till the conclusion of elections, WB predicted. But the Washington-based lender highlighted the government in the medium-term would require inputting major effort to reform its tax system and address competitiveness challenges. To achieve higher and sustainable export growth, Pakistan would need to focus on lowering the cost of doing business and increasing productivity, said the WB.

NBP committed to housing sector finance: NBP president

ISLAMABAD SHAHZAD PARACHA

The federal government has decided to allocate Rs221 billion for subsidies in nthe ext fiscal year 2018-19, a surge in Rs81 billion in the ongoing year 2017-18. Documents available with Pakistan Today indicate that the federal government, in principle, has decided to allocate Rs221 billion for subsidies inthe next fiscal year 2018-19. Documents show that the Rs119 billion has been allocated for the power sector and Rs30 billion for Pakistan Railways. In addition to this, the government will give subsidy on sale of pulses at subsidized rates to the tune of Rs1 billion furthermore; subsidy to USC for sale of sugar (arrears) can be Rs3 billion, the cost differential for sale of wheat Rs500 million, reimbursement of subsidy to PASSCO on account of paddy operation Rs500 million, reimbursement to PASSCO on account of donation of wheat by the government of Pakistan Rs500 million, wheat reserve stock Rs5 billion and Rs8.045 billion would be assigned for PASSCO on account of wheat supplied to Gilgit-Baltistan. Documents stated that the government has initially allocated Rs2 billion for the support for sugar export and Rs1.5 billion for wheat export. In the category of Federal Miscellaneous Investments, the government of Pakistan (GoP) equity in DISCOs through PHPI for payment of DSL of STFF will be Rs6 billion. The government will provide Rs40 million in the next fiscal year to WAPDA as interest free loans for operation and maintenance of Hub and Khanpur Dam. Similarly, the loan to Pakistan Steel Mills (PSM) and the State Engineering Corporation (SEC) are likely to remain Rs4 billion and Rs20 million respectively. The government will give Rs5 billion in gas infrastructure development cess under the head of development expenditure of finance division. On the other hand, Rs5 billion will be allocated for Trading Cooperation of Pakistan (TCP). The TCP will utilise this money for import of urea fertilizer. For the promotion of export, the government has decided to allocate Rs6 billion for Strategic Trade Policy Initiatives, Rs6 billion for Textile Policy Initiative, Rs10 billion for Duty Drawback of Taxes Order 2016-17 and lastly, Rs4 billion for drawback of local taxes and levies (non-textile) order.

natural gas production witnesses decline under present govt ISLAMABAD AHMAD AHMADANI

The production of natural gas in the country has witnessed a decline, allegedly to facilitate the business of Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) during the ongoing tenure of Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N), sources disclosed. Documents available with Pakistan Today revealed that supplies of natural gas to state-owned gas utilities (SNGPL and SSGCL) have witnessed major decline during the tenure of the incumbent government. The decline in natural gas supplies to two gas utilities had started in 2013 and was continued till 2017 as almost upto 387mmcfd of natural gas supplies reduced during the said four years period. According to the documents, supplies of natural gas to Sui Northern Gas Pipelines Limited (SNGPL) and Sui Southern Gas Company Limited (SSGCL) were 2779 million cubic feet per day (MMCFD) in 2012, while it was 2714mmcfd in 2013. Similarly, in 2014, there was a reduction in natural gas supplies to SNGPL & SSGCL as supplies decreased to 2605mmcfd, while supplies further recorded a decrease to 2443mmcfd in 2015 and 2449mcfd in 2016. Also, the supplies of natural gas continued witnessing decline as the supplies to two gas utilities were at 2327mcfd in 2017. It is relevant to mention that the supplies of natural gas to both the state-owned gas utilities in the year 2011 was 2760mmcfd, 2839mmcfd in 2010, 2814 in 2009 and 2837mmcfd in 2008. Though Pakistan produces 4bcfd (billion cubic feet per day) of natural gas, however, it is far short of its consumption demand for over 6bcfd to meet its gas demands. To bridge the shortfall of natural gas, Pakistan had inked an agreement with Qatar in February 2016 for the supply of around $1 billion worth of Liquefied Natural Gas LNG) to Pakistan on an annual basis, to help the country meet its energy shortfall. Also, the incumbent government has framed a policy to encourage the private sector to set up LNG terminals. It also desires to replace furnace oil in power production with imported gas by 2020 for having cheaper and greener energy.

nestlé Pakistan announces rs3.38bn profit after tax, down 17.3pc yoy LAHORE MUHAMMAD FARAN

KARACHI STAFF REPORT

The President and CEO of National Bank of Pakistan, Saeed Ahmad, reaffirmed the commitment of NBP to grow and develop housing sector financing in Pakistan. He was speaking at the signing ceremony of the Shareholders’ Agreement of “Pakistan Mortgage Refinance Company” (PMRC), at a local hotel in Karachi, on Saturday. In his speech, Ahmad said that the lack of proper housing for low-income citizens may lead to serious social, economic, and law and order issues. Of a shortage of 10 million housing units in the country, 80 to 90 per cent is estimated to be for lower income groups, and affordable housing was, therefore, a critical need.

He complimented the efforts of the Board of Directors of PMRC under the chairmanship of Rehmat Hasnie and the management team, PMRC CEO N Kokularupen, and COO Dr Muhammad Saleem, and CFO and Company Secretary Zulfiqar Alam. He said that from inception, his guiding philosophy was to have “the right person for the right job”. This has resulted in the induction of a highly experienced and professional management team and this augurs well for the future success of the company. The event was presided over by the Chief Guest, SBP Deputy Governoe, Jameel Ahmed. NBP Group Chief Risha Mohyeddin, signed the Shareholders Agreement on behalf of NBP. Group Chief, Commercial and Retail Banking Group, Naheed Sultana also attended the event.

Nestlé Pakistan Limited in a notification to Pakistan Stock Exchange (PSX) on Monday, released its financial results for the period ended March 31, 2018, announcing profit after taxation of Rs3.38 billion, down 17. 3 per cent from Rs4.1 billion on March 31, 2017. Gross profit for the period was also down by around 1.96 per cent to Rs11.1 billion from Rs11.4 billion last year. Costs, in general, experienced an upward trend with distribution and selling expenses, administrative expenses, finance cost increasing 12.1 per cent, 15.7 per cent and 82 per cent respectively. Other operating expenses, on the other hand, decreased by 12 per cent. However, net sales for the period ended increased 8 per cent to Rs32.9 billion, compared to Rs30.4 billion on March 31, 2017.

Ghandhara Nissan signs importer agreement with Renault to import heavy trucks LAHORE MOHAMMAD FAROOQ

Ghandhara Nissan Limited (GHNL) has signed an importer agreement with Renault Trucks SAS, France for import of heavy commercial vehicles. A notification sent to the stock exchange from GHNL stated by virtue of this agreement, the company had already imported a few units from Renault, France in CBU condition for testing and trial purposes.

In late-March, GHNL was awarded “Category-B Brownfield Investment Status” by the Ministry of Industries and Production under the Automotive Development Policy 2016-21. It had long been speculated that Ghandhara was looking to restart its production in Pakistan under the Auto Development policy (2016-2021). Earlier in 2016, a delegation of Nissan Japan, Renault France, Al Futtaim Group UAE and Ghandhara Nissan Limited met with then Minister of State Dr Miftah Ismail, who is

currently serving as the Federal Adviser on Finance, Revenue and Economic Affairs to discuss the timelines of commencement of vehicle production. Although the delegation was aiming to revive manufacturing in 2017 but did not do so. Later, in October 2017, the company’s team led by its CEO Ahmed Kuli Khan Khattak approached BOI officials once again to seek approval to restart its assembly plant under the auto policy 2016-2021. However, it was later reported that Ghandhara Nissan was unable to attain

Brownfield status, according to a senior Engineering Development Board (EDB) official. Ghandhara Nissan told the government it would be looking to make an investment of $200 million to restart the plant while warning that if the Brownfield status was not granted, it would move its investment to Algeria. As a result, EDB and Board of Investment (BOI) suggested placing Ghandhara Nissan’s investment plan as a Brownfield investment under the new auto policy of 2016-2021.

Under the Brownfield status, Ghandhara Nissan would be allowed to import auto parts at discounted rates of customs duty for a duration of three years. The company will also be allowed to import parts not being manufactured in Pakistan at 10 per cent customs duty and those being produced in Pakistan at 25 per cent for production of light commercial vehicles and cars. Ghandhara Nissan shares closed at Rs259.04, down Rs4.32 (-1.64 percent) and KSE-100 index at 45.682.24 points, down 389.62 points from Friday’s close.


BUSINESS 11

Tuesday, 17 April, 2018

CORPORATE CORNER amreli steels launches its campaign of ‘resilience’ KARACHI: Amreli Steels, launched its new campaign over the weekend that celebrates the virtue of resilience which is a defining attribute of great individuals as well as its product, steel bars. The advertisement is based on the story of two Pakistani individuals (Younis Khan and Muneeba Mazari) who are the literal embodiments of resilience in their respective areas, sports, and women’s rights. PR

nadra to Give fBr a list of 1Mn individuals liaBle to Pay taxes: MiftaH ISLAMABAD

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KARACHI: Bond Advertising Wins PAS Award 2018 for Karachi Biennale 2017. PR

ISLAMABAD: The Ministry of Industry and Production, in collaboration with other line ministries and local governments has developed the Country Program (CP) Framework for Pakistan. UNIDO’s innovative model for accelerating inclusive and sustainable industrial development in Member States is aligned with the national development agenda and focused on sectors with high growth potential. The programme supports a country in achieving its industrial development goals. The UNIDO HQ mission comprise of Chief for Asia-Pacific Regional Division, Zhen Wang, and Senior Officer, Research and Industrial Policy Advice Division, Nobuya Haraguchi, who visited Pakistan and along with Country Representative and team held consultative meetings with the key stakeholders in Islamabad. PR

Government launches scheme for disabled persons ISLAMABAD: The government has formally launched the scheme aiming at payment of profit to disabled persons at par with Bahbood Savings Scheme. National Savings has already been directed to implement the scheme. It is estimated that around 192,000 disabled persons would benefit from the scheme. The scheme, also fulfills the objective of financial inclusion of disabled persons. PR

Honda atlas ltd achieves historical sales milestone of 50,100 units during 1 year LAHORE: Honda Atlas Cars Pakistan Limited (HACPL) celebrated a historic sales milestone of the 50,100 unit’s (April 1st, 2017-March 31st, 2018) at the manufacturing plant in Manga Mandi, Lahore. HACPL President and CEO, Hironobu Yoshimura, along with top executives and associates of HACPL graced the occasion with their presence. PR

GHULAM ABBAS

HOUGH experts question the moral authority of the government to present the 6th budget, an announcement by the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KP) government has stated that it will not present the budget for the next financial year because of the position the party has taken against the PML-N governments at the Centre and Punjab. Adviser to Prime Minister on Finance and Revenue Miftah Ismail has claimed that his government has the right to promulgate the budget of 2018-19. Talking to media after two budget-related programs in Islamabad on Monday, Miftah said that all provinces were duly informed about the government’s plan to give the budget. “As long as the national assembly exists, the present government has the moral authority to give the budget. At least the government stands at a higher moral ground as compared to an interim setup,” he said, adding that no new schemes were being added in the next budget. “Almost 80 per cent of the budget is usually prepared by the ministries and FBR. If the opposition parties wish, we may also provide an expenditure plan for four months in the budget,” he added. Talking about the general perception that

secP registers 1,125 new companies in March 2018 ISLAMABAD: The Securities and Exchange Commission of Pakistan (SECP) in March, registered 1,125 new companies, raising the number of registered companies to 84,783. Compared to the corresponding month of last year, it represents a growth of 36 per cent. The massive increase in the number of new companies is the result of various reform measures introduced by the SECP, i.e. introduction of simplified combined process for name reservation and incorporation, reduction of fee, the assistance of incorporation by facilitation wings of CROs etc. Around 79 per cent companies were registered as private limited companies, while around 19 per cent companies were registered as singlemember companies. Two per cent of the companies were registered as public unlisted, association, not for profit, and foreign companies. STAFF REPORT

FBR will lose almost Rs500 billion worth of revenue after the government’s decision to change the tax threshold on the salaried class, the adviser said the impact of the decision should not be analysed mathematically. “Those who try and save on taxes will ultimately spend somewhere, subsequently giving the same under other taxation heads,” he said while justifying the exemption of taxes on salaries up to Rs0.1 million. To a question, he said that defence allocation will see the usual rise in the next budget. Miftah said the gross domestic product (GDP) of Pakistan should be above 10 per cent. Unfortunately, it has not risen above four per cent in the last five years’. He said the rupee was devalued by 10 units in the current fiscal year, however, this did not translate into an increase in prices. “Rupee was devalued in accordance with an independent policy,” he added. Miftah said, “Owing to the devaluation of rupee in March, exports increased by 24 per cent in that month and are expected to increase by a further 20 per cent in the next two months.” Responding to a question after his address regarding the expected GDP growth rate of 5 per cent during the next year projected by the Asian Development Bank and the World Bank, the adviser said last year the government targeted the country's growth at 6 per cent, however the ADB, IMF, and WB

projected only around 5 per cent, but in reality, the growth remained at 5.8 per cent very close to the government's target. He said during the current fiscal year, the country was going to achieve 5.8 per cent GDP growth - very close to the government's target of 6 per cent during the year 2017-18. Talking about the amnesty tax scheme, Miftah said those who do not pay taxes will not be allowed to buy land after July 2018. He said that the National Database Registration Authority (NADRA) is providing the government with data on eligible taxpayers. “NADRA will be providing one million people who are liable to pay taxes to FBR,” he said. “NADRA and FBR will identify rich people and will bring them into the tax net", he added. The most fundamental reforms were taken in the real estate sector and according to the new policy, no non-filer will be able to purchase any real estate property, he added. Talking about the expected rise in salaries and perks of government employees in the next budget, Miftah Ismail said that the Prime Minister had specially advised him to announce a special package for government employees and pensioners in the upcoming budget 2018-19. He said although the inflation rate was under five per cent, the government will give more relief to employees and pensioners.

MARKET DAILY

KSE 100 drops 389.62pts amid political uncertainty LAHORE STAFF REPORT

The KSE 100 index dropped a whopping 389.62 points, and settled at 45682.24 on Monday. Off to a rocky start once again the 100 Index slipped into deep red right from the word go after Bloomberg reported that an unaffiliated institutional holder of OGDC (-4.75 per cent) is offering 35 million shares at Rs164-168 per share in placement. This came following a buoyant close on Friday at Rs175.73 with the seller offering a potential discount of 6.7 per cent from the previous close. Additional pressure to the 100 Index came in the second half after LHC ordered temporary ban on the airing of contemptuous speeches by Nawaz Sharif, his daughter Maryam Nawaz and other party leaders. Giving the decision on over two dozen petitions the court ordered the PEMRA to decide on the petitions in 15 days and until that time refrain from airing any contemptuous remarks. Amid rising political uncertainty mar-

ket watchers decided to stick to the sidelines with the 100 Index Volume and turnover dropping down 35 per cent and 24 per cent respectively on d/d basis. APL (+0.58 per cent) announced 3QFY18 NPAT of Rs1.45 billion (EPS: PKR 17.5), slightly higher than our estimates of NPAT Rs1.36 billion (EPS: PKR 16.7), courtesy 20 per cent/5 per cent YoY growth in Mogas and HSD sales. According to market analysts, GP margins of 5.5 per cent reflect healthy inventory gains, indicative of a rising oil price scenario. POL (-0.46 per cent) announced its 3QFY18 results after market close and reported PAT of Rs3.1 billion (EPS: Rs13.13), up by 11 per cent YoY due to higher production and realised prices. Market participation for the 100 Index declined to 68.25 million shares (-35.1 per cent on d/d basis). Major contribution to total market volume came from UNITY (+4.98 per cent), KEL (-0.98 per cent) and EPCL (-2.17 per cent) churning 32.14 million shares out of the All Share volume of 144.85 million shares.

Prohibition on virtual currencies a credit positive move: Moody’s LAHORE MOHAMMAD FAROOQ

Moody’s on Monday stated the State Bank of Pakistan’s prohibition on banks from dealing in digital currencies was a credit positive move. The credit rating agency said this ban on Pakistani banks, payment system operators and service providers from the use of virtual currencies would shield them from significant risks they could pose. According to Moody’s analysis, the country’s banks were generally in-operative in the realm of virtual currencies. It added the central bank hadn’t given any authorization or license to people or companies to engage in issuance, sale, purchase, exchange or investment in digital currencies. Also, the analysis highlighted that there was no global consensus on how to address the regulatory challenges linked with virtual currencies and the central banks’ action was in toe taken by other regulators worldwide. “The SBP advises banks not to facilitate in any way their customers transacting in virtual currencies. The prohibition applies to the full spectrum of financial services they offer, including the use of bank transfers,

credit cards or consumer loans that customers can use to invest in virtual currencies,” said Moody’s. SBP in its circular had forbidden banks, microfinance banks, payment system operators, service providers and development finance institutions (DFIs) to deal in digital currencies. The central bank issued a warning to the masses, much like the European Banking Authority against the use of digital currencies. It added the risks associated in trading of virtual currencies include the threat of financial losses with no legal protection on offer, major price swings linked to speculative activity, chances of failure/closure of cryptocurrency exchanges due to several reasons. The failure or closure of cryptocurrency exchanges could be driven due to actions initiated by regulators or vulnerability of these exchanges to hacking/security compromises. But the central bank accepted that high degree of anonymity that virtual currencies offer could lead to rising illegal activities, which would make it difficult to monitor, track-down and document such transactions. All local and international payments, money transfers are under the purview of the central bank, which hasn’t given permission

to any entity to offer such sort of transactions using digital currencies. Moody’s said SBP had cautioned about the legal repercussions that could happen where cryptocurrencies were used to transfer funds outside the country. “Pakistani authorities are generally taking actions to prevent terrorism financing and money-laundering offences. We note that the Financial Action Task Force (FATF), an intergovernmental organization combatting money laundering and terrorist financing will include Pakistan on its watch list of countries with deficiencies in anti-money laundering/terrorism financing measures this June,” said Moody’s. The credit rating agency highlighted the central bank wasn’t actually against the technology behind digital currencies i.e. blockchain and has initiated measures to boost its supervisory capacity, which would promote usage of new technologies in the future. “The authorities welcome the entry of financial technology companies in the market, especially in the payments system sector, as part of Pakistan’s National Financial Inclusion Strategy, which aims to bring more people in the formal financial sector,” said Moody’s.


12 WORLD VIEW

Tuesday, 17 April, 2018

Why Israel needs to escalate Its threats agaInst Iran ISRAEL MUST ENSURE IRAN DOESN’T DIG IN ON ITS NORTHERN BORDER. EVEN IF THAT MEANS WAR WITH SYRIA - AND AIR STRIKES ON IRAN

Haaretz

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ChuCk freiLiCh

SRAEL faces two severe threats today that may soon require some very difficult decisions, possibly leading to war. The IranianHezbollah-Syrian axis in the north is growing stronger, under Russian auspices, with Iran reportedly trying to establish permanent bases and rocket factories in Syria and Lebanon. Iran appears to have temporarily ceased its efforts in response to attacks that Israel allegedly conducted in Syria, but may have renewed them recently. Based on the open-source picture, one cannot say with confidence what Iran is doing, and it’s possible that the prime minister and other Israeli spokesmen have intentionally overstated the threat in order to focus international attention on it. At the same time, U.S. President Donald Trump has threatened to withdraw from the nuclear agreement with Iran by May unless U.S. allies agree to “fix” it by then. The allies, for lack of better alternatives and out of concern that the entire nuclear agreement may crumble, have expressed some willingness to do so. If that indeed happens, it will be an impressive accomplishment for the president, achieved in his usual style in a humiliating and untoward manner. The real problem, however, is that it is not at all clear that Trump truly seeks agreement with the Europeans. Indeed, his recent actions, including the appointment of the new secretary of state and new national security adviser, point in the opposite direction – that he intends to withdraw from the agreement. In any event, it will be a long slog to get the

Iranians to agree to any changes. While all the above has been taking place, the regional battle for power has continued apace, with Iran continuing to establish itself as the regional hegemon, in control of a Shi’ite crescent extending all the way to the Mediterranean, amid the ongoing Sunni weakness. The United States – the president’s strident rhetoric notwithstanding – has ceased playing a leading role in the Middle East. Russia, conversely, has been spreading its influence throughout the region through deft strategic maneuvering and the sale of weapons and nuclear-power reactors. As a diplomatic move, Israel is right to try to focus international attention on Iran’s activities in Syria, even to amplify the threat somewhat, as long as we are not carried away by our own public diplomacy. Israel’s actual policy, however, should be based on as precise an understanding as possible of what the Iranians are actually doing. I believe that Israel is strong and secure enough to adopt a national security strategy based on heightened restraint, so I have advocated a greater emphasis on defense and diplomacy. Still, I believe that Israel cannot let Iran establish a permanent military presence on its border, including air, naval and ground bases. The change in Israel’s strategic circumstances would be severe. If we establish that Iran is indeed trying to establish a permanent military presence in Syria, Israel should adopt a clear and firm deterrent posture designed to prevent Iran from doing so. To this end, it should adopt

The Syria bombing is a disgraceful act disguised as a noble gesture

Guardian Moustafa BayouMi

The bombing of Syrian government targets by the United States, Britain, and France is a disgraceful and ineffectual act masquerading as a noble gesture. Far from preventing a more vicious war, the bombing instead legitimizes the continuation of the conflict. In fact, what this barrage of weapons really reveals is how little interest the global powers have in ending Syria’s ghastly war. Similar to the attacks on Syrian government targets that Donald Trump ordered just over a year ago, the airstrikes this time will not seriously damage Bashar al-Assad’s larger military capacity, nor are they intended to. Instead, we’re told that the western bombing campaign has specifically aimed munitions at locations where the storage and testing of chemical weapons occurs. But wasn’t last year’s attack meant to put an end to Assad’s use of chemical weapons, and aren’t these the weapons that he was supposed to have destroyed under international auspices in 2014? At this rate, should we expect that an aerial bombing mission to finally and completely destroy Assad’s chemical weapons will be launched every April? The question is ridiculous, of course, but so is the idea that this attack will accomplish anything beyond boosting the war-making egos of its protagonists and enabling Assad, his reprehensible regime, and his allies to complain of being the perpetual victims of western aggression. Beyond the bombast on both sides, Syria’s daily misery will continue. These strikes mark the first time Theresa May of Britain and Emmanuel Macron of France have committed their respective militaries into combat, and they

have done so, according to May, “to protect innocent people in Syria from the horrific deaths and casualties caused by chemical weapons, but also because we cannot allow the erosion of the international norm that prevents the use of these weapons.” May’s words might sound more intelligent than those of Donald Trump, who in his statement about the attacks told the American people: “Hopefully, someday we’ll get along with Russia and maybe even Iran, but maybe not.” But what May’s words really reveal is not the ethical reasoning of a head of state but the devastating lack of moral concern by the international community when it comes to the people of Syria. The fact that three of the world’s most powerful militaries have now been mobilized into action, even for a limited campaign such as this one, to prevent “the erosion of the international norm” of using chemical weapons is far from comforting. Since the war began, Assad’s regime has engaged in the repeated and dreadful use of barrel bombs and mass starvation, the systematic torture of thousands of citizens and the laying siege to multiple cities, the killing of hundreds of thousands of people and the displacement of more than half the population. Yet, all of this horror does not seem to “erode an international norm” and certainly has not motivated these western leaders to any meaningful action to end the war. On the contrary, regional and global powers now exploit Syria for their own advantage and apportion out its territory for repeated bombing. At this point, the country has been bombed by the Assad regime, the United States, Britain, France, Russia, Iran, Turkey, Israel, Saudi Arabia, Jordan, Bahrain, and the UAE. Rather than limiting war, this latest bombing of Syria normalizes the war’s ongoing brutality. Forget the chemical weapons for a moment. The bombing of Syria by the western powers essentially and unconscionably establishes near total warfare on civilians as an acceptable “international norm.” Our politicians will wallow in their most recent action, calling the bombing a great success for our civilization. In fact, it’s much more akin to our demise. Moustafa Bayoumi is a Guardian US columnist.

an approach of “coercive diplomacy” – that is, the credible threat to use military force precisely to avoid conflict and achieve the desired diplomatic outcome. As part of this approach, and to induce the Syrians to put an end to Iran’s activities in their territory, Damascus must be made to understand that it is truly playing with fire this time, and that Israel will respond by launching graduated attacks against Syrian-regime targets, to the point of threatening its very existence. Iran, too, should be made to understand that if it persists in its efforts it will no longer have the immunity from attacks it has hitherto enjoyed due to geographic distance, and that Iranian regime targets will also be fair game. This recommendation may lead to a severe escalation and even to war. If, however, it turns out that the Syrians and Iranians have ignored Israel’s warnings, we will be on a path to conflict in any event and it’s better that Iran be put to the test now before it crosses the nuclear threshold. An Israeli deterrent policy such as this will undoubtedly also lead to a strong Russian response, and that is exactly the intention – to force Russia to restrain Syria, Hezbollah and Iran and thereby prevent conflict. Clearly, this approach requires maximum coordination with the U.S. administration, to the extent that there is one today. Despite the president’s tough talk, an American military attack against Iran’s nuclear program is probably not in the cards. Israel can, of course, continue covert measures against it, but they have proved of limited effectiveness to date.

If the nuclear agreement comes apart we will really only be left with one final option: an Israeli strike. On the positive side, such a strike may now enjoy the support of the United States, whereas the Obama administration’s opposition was a main reason Israel refrained from an attack. Conversely, an Israeli strike can cause no more than a delay of a few years in the Iranian program, at the expense of a war with Hezbollah and possibly Iran itself. Israel should thus encourage the Trump administration to reach a compromise with the Europeans and make do, if necessary, with a partial “fix” of the agreement. All other options are far worse. The battle to ensure that the limitations on Iran’s nuclear capabilities never expire should be left for the future, closer to the deal’s expiration. Opponents of the nuclear deal are undoubtedly celebrating the imminent realization of their greatest dream, its termination, but they may soon find that the dream has rapidly turned into a nightmare. Israel already behaves as if it is deterred by Iran and Hezbollah, while it is cautious in its actions in Syria and refrains from offensive operations in Lebanon. Imagine how things would look without the nuclear agreement and if Iran had already crossed the nuclear threshold. Chuck Freilich, a former Israeli deputy national security adviser, is a senior fellow at Harvard’s Belfer Center and the author of Israeli National Security: a New Strategy for an Era of Change, Oxford University Press, 2018.

Why Russia did not respond to the US strikes on Syria

al Jazeera Leonid issaev

After a week of rhetorical escalation between the US and Russia - much of it conducted on Twitter - missile strikes on Syria were finally carried out on Saturday. US, UK and French forces launched attacks on three sites allegedly linked to the production of chemical weapons near Damascus, as well as in the province of Homs. Despite the pathos with which US President Donald Trump announced the military operation, its result turned out to be less than modest. Putting aside the contradictory reports on how many missiles struck their intended targets, they did not cause any military casualties and failed to inflict any serious damage on Syrian military infrastructure. Compared to the recent Israeli air raid on the T-4 base, the result of the April 14 strikes seems rather insignificant. In this sense, the US, UK and French strikes were no different from the military action in April 2017, when after the use of chemical weapons in the Syrian town of Khan Sheikhoun in Idlib province, the US bombed regime-operated Shayrat airfield. The difference this year was that Washington blamed not only the Syrian regime for the chemical attack but also its patron, Moscow. This gave the situation a higher degree of tension, increasing speculations about a direct clash between the US and Russia. Direct confrontation was predictably avoided, and the whole operation seemed to be no more than a “performance”. The party that stood to benefit the most from this situation was the Syrian regime and its allies. There was no change in the balance of power on the ground as a result of the strikes and forces loyal to the Syrian regime suffered no losses. A few hours after the strikes, Bashar al-Assad entered social media politics by posting a video of himself purportedly arriving triumphantly at his workplace in Damascus. Local and foreign media then showed scenes of Syrians celebrating in the streets.

Assad seemed to weather the media speculation storm quite well, too. Last year, the US attacks on Shayrat military base took people by surprise and left the international media speculating on the possibility of more serious US military actions against the regime. This year, after the “perfectly executed” strikes - as Trump described them - it became clear that there is nothing much behind the White House rhetoric except populism. To Assad, it is clear that the US doesn’t have any strategy to resolve the Syrian conflict and is not even able to employ an effective mechanism to preclude the use of chemical weapons. Last year, the Russian leadership saw the attack on Shayrat airfield as the least damaging solution for the domestic troubles Trump was facing. This year too, Moscow understood that the strikes on Syria are not really in retribution for the alleged use of chemical weapons in Douma and definitely not an attempt to influence the outcome of the Syrian conflict. It was simply a demonstration of force. What’s more, the fact that Washington was slow to undertake the strikes was perceived in Moscow as a manifestation of weakness and indecisiveness, which only gave confidence to the Russian leadership. As a result, Moscow afforded itself a certain degree of hostile rhetoric to accompany the coordination with Washington that ensured no damage was done to Russian assets on the ground. Consultations between Russia and the United States appear to have taken place in the week prior to the US strikes. The fact that Moscow had confidence in this coordination was reflected in the presence of a delegation from the ruling United Russia Party headed by its secretary-general, Andrei Turchak, in Damascus, the day the strikes were conducted. In the end, these “formal” strikes against Syria were the optimal solution for both countries to ease tension around the situation with chemical weapons in Douma. Moscow retained the status quo in Syria, and Washington formally fulfilled its promise and took a “principled” position. But what should we make of the heated exchange of threats prior to the strikes? The talk about a possible escalation between the US and Russia in the Middle East has been widely discussed since the latter’s intervention in Syria in 2015. This year’s state of the nation address which Russian President Vladimir Putin delivered to the Federal Assembly upped the ante, as he mentioned the possibility of “instant retaliation” in case of an at-

tack on Russia. Retaliation threats were also issued just before the US-led strikes on Syria were carried out. The Russian Chief of General Staff Valery Gerasimov said that Russia would take “retaliatory measures both on missiles and carriers that will use them”, if the lives of Russian troops were endangered. If we take into account the fact that the US administration at least hypothetically considered the scenario of military intervention in Syria, Moscow had no choice but to bluff about “retaliatory measures”. Like last year, nothing really happened after the strikes and the argument was that no action was taken because there was no threat to Russian military facilities. Expecting a different reaction from Moscow would be reckless. Despite the emotional rhetoric, the Russian leadership is trying not to cross the line and provoke a conflict. A direct confrontation with a militarily superior US-led coalition would mean a complete defeat for Russia in Syria, not to mention that it could start a global armed conflict. It is, therefore, not surprising that Russia has also not responded to repeated Israeli air raids in Syria. Over the past six months, Israel has consistently targeted Syrian infrastructure and military facilities. In September, Israeli warplanes struck a weapons development centre in Hama province, a month later - an antiaircraft battery near Damascus, and in December - weapons warehouses near the capital. In January and February, the Israeli Air Force struck various Syrian and Iranian military posts across Syria. Most recently, on April 9, Israel bombed the T-4 airbase in Homs province, killing several Iranian military officers. At the same time, in none of these cases did Russian air defence systems, including the S-300, the S-400 and the “Pantsir”, strike the attacking Israeli warplanes. So clearly Russia has chosen a strategy of talking tough while making sure it does not take any risks on the ground. That said, despite the lack of apparent escalation on the ground, rhetorical tensions should not be underestimated. There is a degree of unpredictability in the behaviour of actors on both sides in recent months, as well as increasing disregard for internationally accepted norms and procedures. This could prove dangerous in the future as it minimises the space for negotiations and diplomatic settlements. Leonid Issaev is a lecturer at the Higher School of Economics in Moscow.


Tuesday, 17 April, 2018

BOllywOOD STArS SEEK juSTicE fOr KAThuA, uNNAO rApE vicTiMS Riz Ahmed lashes out at sympathisers of Asifa's rapists MUMBAI Riz Ahmed is among the people from the entertainment industry who lashed out at the sympathisers of Asifa's rapists. Talking to Twitter, the PakistaniBritish actor said, “Politicians and judges are marching in SUPPORT of the rapists of an 8year old girl in India - because the victim was Muslim. This is what racist politics does to a society.” The brutal rape and murder of an eight-year-old Muslim girl from the nomadic Bakarwal community in the Kathua district of Indian occupied Kashmir has sent shock waves throughout India. While many celebs came forward to stand against the heinous crime and demand justice for the little girl, some Hindu extremists decided to support the rapists. Meanwhile, Bollywood celebrities, along with thousands of Mumbaikars, gathered on Sunday for a peaceful protest against the barbaric rape and murder of Asifa and the sexual assault

of another young girl in Unnao, Uttar Pradesh. Celebrities including Rajkummar Rao, Sameera Reddy, Twinkle Khanna along with her son Arav, Akshay Kumar, music director Vishal Dadlani, filmmaker Kiran Rao, Aditi Rao Hydari and veteran actor Helen were among many others who came on the streets of Bandra to protest against the rape incidents and seek justice. Several actors such as Kareena Kapoor Khan, Swara Bhaskar, Sonam Kapoor, Armeena Rana Khan, Priyanka Chopra, Anushka Sharma, Nawazuddin Siddiqui and Mini Mathur also held posters demanding justice for the eightyear-old girl Asifa. The protesters were seen holding placards and posters that read #JusticeforAsifa. Some young girls were also present at the gathering holding posters that read, “This is not just rape, this is genocide with state support.” Despite tensions between Pakistan and India, celebrities from both sides of the border have come together to demand justice for innocent Asifa.

reena Kapoor Khan, Swara Bhaskar, Sonam Kapoor, Shruti Seth and Mini Mathur also held placards asking for justice for the eight-year-old girl, who was

kidnapped, sedated, starved, gang-raped and murdered in Kathua district of Jammu and Kashmir. The actors posted videos of the placards on social media.

stAff RepoRt

MUMBAI

B

Agencies

OLLyWOOD stars Akshay Kumar, Kalki Koechlin, Twinkle Khanna, Rajkummar Rao, Helen and Kiran Rao, along with thousands of Mumbaikars, gathered on Sunday for a peaceful protest against the barbaric rape and murder of an eight-year-old girl in Kathua in Jammu and Kashmir, and the sexual assault of another young girl in Unnao in Uttar Pradesh. Patralekha, Sameera Reddy, Twinkle along with her son Aarav, Tara Sharma, music director Vishal Dadlani, singer and social activist Sona Mohapatra, Anushka Manchanda, and Aditi Rao Hydari, were among many others who came on the

Executive producer of 'The Simpsons' responds to Apu controversy LOs ANGeLes

streets of Bandra to protest against the incidents of rape and seek justice. Some young girls were also present at the gathering holding posters that read: “This is not just rape, this is genocide with state support.” “Before having a Swachh Bharat, we want a safe Bharat,” read the placard of a young burkha-clad girl. Vishal Dadlani said: “We want to stop this nonsense now… we want action and we want it now! Once the man is accused and guilty of raping and killing a baby girl, he should be hanged then and then.” Sona Mohapatra said, “Our gathering shows that we as a community stand for the cause; there is a helplessness that we all feel and therefore we are standing here. We want justice.” Several Bollywood actresses Ka-

Farah Khan to choreograph Sonam Kapoor's sangeet News Desk

Agencies

The Simpsons showrunner and executive producer Al Jean has responded to the feedback surrounding a recent Simpsons episode that attempted to address the controversy over the depiction of character Apu Nahasapeemapetilon. The sitcom featured a South Asian character called Apu, who has had to grapple with the troubling stereotype of a convenience store clerk with an exaggerated, fake Indian accent since the show’s existence. It was voiced by Hank Azaria. Al Jean replied to this with a tweet: “Something that started decades ago and was applauded and inoffensive is now politically incorrect. What can you do?” said Marge. Lisa then looks over at a framed photograph of Apu, which has the line, “Don’t have a cow!” written on it. Marge states, “Some things will be dealt with at a later date,” to which, Lisa responds, “If at all.” Though the episode was well-received by some, many felt the attempt was half-hearted and underdone. Hari Kondabolu, an American comedian and the film-maker with roots in India, who is behind the documentary The Problem with Apu, wrote, “Wow.

Zayn Malik believes he could win an Oscar LONDON Agencies

Singer Zayn Malik feels that he can be an Oscar-winning actor. His claim comes after shooting a mini-film for his new single Let Me, which saw him foray into character portrayal. Malik said that he is interested in acting. “It’s always been something that I liked doing, even when I was growing up. I did a few school performances,” Malik told a Manchester radio station. “I’m not saying that I’m an Oscarlevel actor right now, but I’m sure I can go to a few classes and learn things and pick it up,” the singer added. His comments have come after his former One Direction band member Harry Styles made a critically-acclaimed acting debut in smash-hit film Dunkirk.

News of Sonam Kapoor and beau Anand Ahuja’s wedding have been making the rounds and while we are still not sure when the wedding is scheduled to take place, latest reports have suggested that the wedding will take place in Mumbai from May 7-10. This means that wedding preparations are in full swing and the Mumbai Mirror recently reported that Bollywood’s leading choreographer Farah Khan will be directing the dances for Sonam’s upcoming nuptials. An inside source has claimed: “Rehearsals have kicked off at Anil Kapoor’s Juhu bungalow. Anil and

mom Sunita will be putting together a special act for the bride-to-be at the sangeet. Sonam’s cousins and extended family have joined in as well for the pre-wedding ceremony. The dancing troupe will be performing on her hit songs like Veer Di Wedding‘s title track, Abhi Toh Party Shuru Hui Hai from the Fawad Khan co-starrer Khoobsurat, the Prem Ratan Dhan Payo title track, and Dheere Dheere from her music video with Hrithik Roshan, among others, besides other popular wedding songs.” The source added that Sonam is expected to join in for a special act. Farah was chosen because of her close ties with the Kapoors that dates

to her early days in the industry. Farah is close to both Anil and Sunita, who have known the choreographer cum director since the time she started out in Bollywood. Over the years, Anil has danced to many hit numbers choreographed by her. Meanwhile, Farah had been brainstorming on the ideal wedding present for Sonam and Anand and that’s when she decided to take charge of the sangeet celebrations. Sonam and Anand’s wedding is expected to be a three-day affair which will include mehndi and sangeet ceremonies. The reception is to be held at a suburban five-star in Mumbai.

ARTS

13

Danyal Arshad enthralls music lovers in Norway News Desk The Embassy of Pakistan in Norway organised a musical performance of the renowned pop singer Danyal Arshad to mark the celebration of friendship between Pakistan and Norway. The event held on Sunday was attended by a large number of Norway dignitaries, government officials, diplomatic community based in Norway, Pakistani families, university students and leading journalists of the country. Danyal Arshad amused the audience with his versatile multilingual songs covering genres of the pop style. He mesmerised the audience and eloquently articulated the musical traditions of Pakistan. At the end of the programme, the Pakistani ambassador in Norway Riffat Masood presented bouquets to Danyal and thanked him for the enthralling musical performance.

Anil Kapoor, Madhuri set to star together after 18 years News Desk The popular on-screen pair of Anil Kapoor and Madhuri Dixit is ready to return together after 18 years for Indra Kumar's Total Dhamaal. The duo starts shooting for the adventure-comedy in Mumbai while grooving to the title track, reported Filmfare. Director Indra Kumar shares, “All three of us are shooting together 26 years after Beta and I’m excited about reuniting with my blockbuster jodi (pair). They play husband and wife in the film and have been prepping for a while but I can’t reveal any details except that Anil goes by the name of Avinash and all of us call him Avi.” Anil and Madhuri will be shooting for the film for the next 15 days. He adds further, “It’s like a Beta reunion. I remember a week before the film’s release, we picturised “Dhak Dhak”. We’d already received the censor certificate by then so we had to add another supplement to the certificate for the song which was incorporated later. It was a last-minute addition and created history. We were all blown away when we saw it for the first time.” Ajay Devgn, Arshad Warsi, Jaaved Jaaferi, Riteish Deshmukh, Sanjay Mishra and Pitobash will join the duo for the song from Sunday. Madhuri and Anil were last seen together in Pukar (2000).

'Rampage' surpasses 'A Quiet Place' at weekend box office LOs ANGeLes Agencies

After a weekend of fluctuating projections, Dwayne Johnson (just barely) owned the North American box office after all. Though earlier estimates looked like the second frame of A Quiet Place would take the weekend, New Line Cinema and Warner Bros’ Rampage snuck up to take the top spot with $34.5 million from 4,101 theaters. Jeff Goldstein, president of domestic distribution at Warner Bros’ attributed the weekend’s numbers to Johnson’s star power. “Dwayne Johnson is a closer,” Goldstein said. “He’s got an incredible connection with his fanbase. He’s a global draw unlike anybody else today.” Though the sci-fi actioner has an impressive A- CinemaScore and 80 percent audience approval on Rotten Tomatoes, Rampage, which opened

under initial predictions, will need to rely heavily on overseas to carry its costly $120 million budget. The video game adaptation earned $114.1 million internationally, with a worldwide total of $148.6 million. Still, its opening was enough to just narrowly take the box office crown from A Quiet Place, which earned $32.9

million in 3,589 locations. A Quiet Place has been riding high with rave reviews, only dropping 34 percent. That brings its cumulative domestic gross to an impressive $100 million. “The speed with which ‘A Quiet Place’ has raced to the $100 million mark is a testament to the film’s ongoing appeal and a result of terrific word

of mouth,” said Paul Dergarabedian, a film analyst at comScore. Also benefiting from the Friday the 13th weekend was Universal and Blumhouse’s collaboration “Truth or Dare.” The supernatural thriller debuted in third place with $19 million from 3,029 theaters. The pic, starring Lucy Hale and Tyler Posey, made $2.6 million internationally, combining for a global total of $21.7 million off its budget under $5 million. “This is an outstanding debut considering the competitive landscape,” Jim Orr, head of domestic distribution at Universal, said. “For original horror, Blumhouse has defined the genre for many years. They built a model that is just terrific.” The 2018 box office is down 2.4 percent compared to 2017, according to comScore. The same weekend last year, where The Fate of the Furious opened with $98.8 million, is down 15.5 percent.


14 LEISURE

Tuesday, 17 April, 2018

ARIES

TAURUS

GEMINI

You currently like the idea of having a few days to chill out, but might be surprised at how quickly you get bored with nothing to do. Or, you may need to face the reality that rest and relaxation are.

An old familiar memory rushes back into your thoughts today. But rather than feeling nostalgic, you can see glaring similarities mirrored in your current life. It's comforting to know that you can recreate.

You might suddenly realize today that your life trajectory isn't going to change as fast as you had hoped. It might be rather jarring to have your expectations dashed, but it's crucial to understand that.

CANCER

LEO

VIRGO

Everything boils down to adopting the proper perspective today, especially if you are feeling like you're not making enough progress in your career. Oddly enough, you're able to maintain your optimism,

The good news is that you are on the receiving end of more encouragement now than you dreamed possible. However, the bad news is everyone seems to have an agenda that's different from yours. You would.

You begin to see the possibilities ahead through a wide-angle lens today. Happily, this is not pie-in-the-sky dreaming, for your practical approach to planning keeps you on a straight and narrow path.

LIBRA

SCORPIO

SAGITTARIUS

Although relationship dynamics might be more complicated than ever, you have a particular goal in mind and are confident you will reach it one way or another. If fact, you may be feeling more certain about.

You can rely on your closest friends to come through with flying colors on your behalf now. However, you may need to ask for what you want, even if you think that someone close to you should be able to.

Your work routine carries an uncharacteristic appeal these days. Perhaps the regularity with which you do your tasks is simply reassuring. Or maybe you're just thankful that you have something productive.

HaGaR tHE HoRRIblE

dIlbERt

GaRFIEld

baldo

CAPRICORN

AQUARIUS

PISCES

The innocent side of love is captivating to you these days. Although you are ready to reduce the complexity of your life, downsizing is more challenging than it sounds. Nevertheless, walking away from.

You may be more of a homebody these days -at least that's how it appears to everyone else. But even if you enjoy the idea of retreating into your private world, you probably won't be able to pull it.

You feel more emotionally secure now if you're living life to your fullest potential. Obviously, your sense of independence is not subservient to anyone else's, especially when the stakes are so high.

cRosswoRd

ACROSS 1 Reference book (13) 8 free (3) 9 Serve as a symbol for (9) 10 Very clean (8) 11 Telegram (4) 13 Let off the hook (6) 14 Inverted commas (6) 16 Macho man (4) 17 disagrees with — crossbow bolts (8) 20 Vulgarity (9) 21 Eggs (3) 22 Nursery rhyme character — Bill let you bet (anag) (6,3,4)

woRd sEaRcH

DOwn 1 Gains by labour (5) 2 Established rules for dealing with particular situations (4,2,7) 3 Lackadaisical (8) 4 fight against (6) 5 declare to be true (4) 6 fixed and uncompromising (4,2,3,4) 7 Recasts (anag) — performer (7) 12 Second largest Channel Island (8) 13 Morally just (7) 15 Triumphantly effective (6)

cHEss APPOINTMENT ChAMPIONShIP CITE CLAIM CROwN CULTURE dAMAGE fORTUNATE GREAT GROwTh hEARd hOARd INVAdE LEAGUE LENS LUNCh MANAGE PATCh PLATE

POPULAR RIGS ROOST SELECT ShARE SPORT SPURN START STyLE TACT TENNIS TOdAy TOTAL TOTE UPROAR VALVES wEAVE wORSEN

white tO PLAY AND MAte iN fOur MOVes 8 7 6 5 4 3 2 1

A

B

C

D

E

F

G

H

Today’s soluTions

bRIdGE loUIE's ZERo REsUlt

sUdokU crossword solution sudoku solution

1.Qxb5! Qxb5 2.d5+ Rg7 3.exf7 h6 4.Nd4 * chess solution

How to play fill in all the squares in the grid so that each row, column and each of the squares contains all the digits. The object is to insert the numbers in the boxes to satisfy only one condition: each row, column and 3x3 box must contain the digits 1 through 9 exactly once.


SPORTS 15

Tuesday, 17 April, 2018

WILLIAMSon LeADS SunrISerS to toP of IPL In WArner'S AbSenCe new dehlI

K

Agencies

ANE Williamson has steered Sunrisers Hyderabad to the top of the Indian Premier League table since the New Zealander was elevated to captain in the absence of scandal-tainted David Warner. Williamson, the only foreign captain in this season´s edition of the lucrative franchise, has ensured an unbeaten run for Hyderabad in the first three games of the Twenty20 league. The Kiwi cuts a much lower profile than Warner but has notched 92 runs in the Sunrisers´ three matches, including a fifty in their win over Kolkata Knight Riders on Saturday. Hyderabad, who won the tournament in 2016, next face second-placed Kings XI Punjab, who recorded their second win on Sunday buoyed by a quick 63-run blitz by Chris Gayle. "Obviously nice to win three in a row," said Williamson after the Sunrisers´ win at Kolkata´s Eden Gardens last week. "Bowlers have executed their skills really well, but we know every game is tough, so look to continue doing that." Williamson was a last-minute replacement for Warner after the high-pro-

Angry Donaldson squares up to umpire in Monte Carlo Monte Carlo: American youngster Jared Donaldson squared up to French umpire Arnaud Gabas after losing his temper over a line call in bizarre scenes during a Monte Carlo Masters match on Monday. After Gabas got out of his chair to check a mark, Donaldson lost his cool when a serve from opponent Albert Ramos Vinolas was called in when he thought it was out. The 21-yearold Donaldson was adamant Gabas checked the wrong mark in the clay and squared up to the official while shouting at him insisting that what the umpire was pointing at "wasn't a mark". He then refused to play the next game until a supervisor was called to the court, claiming "I can call the supervisor whenever I want". Donaldson later offered Gabas a sarcastic apology, saying: "I'm sorry I hurt your feelings, I apologise." Hawkeye replays on television appeared to show that Donaldson was right about the serve, but Hawkeye is not used at the tournament. Last year's Monte Carlo runner-up Ramos Vinolas led by a set and a break at the time, and went on to win 6-3, 6-3. Gabas has previous history with angry tennis players, suffering a fractured eye socket after being hit by a ball struck by an irate Denis Shapovalov in a Davis Cup match between Canada and Britain last year. Agencies

Indian players likely to feature in Pakistan’s Super Kabaddi League IslaMabad Agencies

Indian players are also expected to feature in the inaugural edition of Pakistan’s Super Kabaddi League (SKL) to take place in Lahore from May 1. Talking to APP, Secretary Pakistan Kabaddi Federation (PKF), Muhammad Sarwar said: “we had sent an invitation to our Indian counterpart for participation in the Super League”. “They will seek permission from their government for participation in the league,” he added. Speaking about the league, he said eight teams will take part in the league including Lahore, Karachi, Islamabad, Peshawar, Faisalabad, Gwadar, Multan and Gujrat.

file Australian was banned from the IPL over the South Africa ball-tampering scandal. Australian skipper Steve Smith -- another big-ticket name for the IPL -- was

also dropped as captain of the Rajasthan Royals. The cheating row, so close to the IPL season launch, threatened to sully the billion-dollar franchise.

But the glitzy tournament is already earning its reputation with close finishes and big hits in steady supply just a few weeks into the world´s most popular T20 league.

Nishikori fights back to beat Berdych in Monte Carlo Monte Carlo Agencies

Japan's Kei Nishikori fought back from a set down to see off Czech 12th seed Tomas Berdych on Monday and reach the Monte Carlo Masters second round. In a battle of two former Grand Slam finalists, Nishikori raced through the final two sets to progress with a 4-6, 6-2, 6-1 victory. The former world number four, who is now ranked 36th, missed a large part of last season with a right wrist injury and started his 2018 campaign in American second-tier Challenger Tour events. But he was close to his best against Berdych, despite making a slow start. Berdych moved into a 4-1 lead en route to the opening set, but Nishikori moved into another gear and claimed four straight games to level the match. The deciding set was even more onesided, as two breaks to love helped the 28-year-old to his best win of the season so far. Nishikori, playing in the tournament for the first time in six years, will take on Russian youngster Daniil Medvedev in round two. Earlier on Monday, American Jared Donaldson launched into an angry tirade at umpire Arnaud Gabas while squaring up to the Frenchman over a line call

during his defeat by Albert Ramos-Vinolas. The 21-year-old petulantly insisted a supervisor was called to check the mark, saying: "I can call the supervisor whenever I want." He then sarcastically apologised, saying he was "sorry" to hurt Gabas' feelings. Ramos-Vinolas, who lost last year's final to Rafael Nadal, was leading by a set and a break at the time and went on to win 6-3, 6-3. French veteran Julien Benneteau bowed out of his final appearance in Monaco at the first hurdle with a straight-sets defeat by Borna Coric, while Russian Andrey Rublev edged out Robin Haase 7-5 in a third set.

"All the eight teams are striving for that extra "one-percenters´ that can make the difference between winning and losing," former South Africa all-rounder Jacques Kallis wrote in The Times of India newspaper. "On many occasions in the past ten years I have made the point that the difference between the top team and the bottom team in the IPL is smaller than any other cricket league in the world," said Kallis, who advises the Knight Riders. Gayle was only selected in the third round of IPL bidding, picked up by Punjab for just $314,000 in the January auctions that saw rookies going for more than $1 million. But the West Indian did not disappoint, smashing 63 off 33 balls in his opener for the Kings XI. Gayle hit 7 fours and 4 sixes as Kings XI defeated Chennai Super Kings by four runs and cruised into second place on the IPL ladder. "It´s good to be back," the 38-yearold big hitter said after Punjab´s win. Other standout performances include a 14-ball fifty -- the fastest in IPL history -- by Punjab opener Lokesh Rahul and some entertaining knocks by Knight Riders batsman Andre Russell and England´s Jason Roy for Delhi Daredevils.

Djokovic thrashes Lajovic in Monte Carlo opener Monte Carlo Agencies

Former world number one Novak Djokovic showed signs of a return to form with a 6-0, 6-1 thrashing of fellow Serb Dusan Lajovic in the Monte Carlo Masters first round on Monday. It was an impressive performance from the 30-year-old in his first match since splitting from coach Andre Agassi and starting to work again with long-time former coach Marian Vajda. Ranked 13th in the world after lengthy spells off the court with an elbow injury, Djokovic is training with Vajda for the first time since last year's Monte Carlo Masters. Djokovic dominated from the outset as Lajovic struggled, and despite some nervy moments on serve in the second set, wrapped up victory in under an hour to book a second-round meeting with Borna Coric. It was the 12-time Grand Slam champion's first win at a regular ATP Tour event this season, after losing his opening matches in Indian Wells and Miami to Taro Daniel and Benoit Paire respectively. Djokovic started strongly, dropping only three points on serve as he cruised to a first-set bagel which was sealed with a fierce return winner. Lajovic had his chances in the second, creating break-point opportunities in three consecutive Djokovic service games as the two-time Monte Carlo champion threw in two double faults. But the qualifier was unable to make the most of those openings, and Djokovic, who lives and trains in Monaco, broke in game four as Lajovic fired wide.

Britain's Dan Evans to return to tennis after drugs ban GlasGow Agencies

Britain's Dan Evans is set to make his comeback after a one-year drugs ban at the Glasgow Trophy ATP Challenger event later this month. The 27-year-old, who tested positive for cocaine last April, has been handed a wildcard into the qualifying draw for the tournament, which starts on April 28. "I want to thank everyone who has supported me throughout this difficult period," said Evans. "I have learned a lot about myself in my time away from the game, a sport that I love very dearly. "I am now committed to training hard, resuming my career and getting back to where I was, although appreciate this will take time." Evans, who has a career-high ranking of 41, has slipped to 994th in the singles rankings. "We have been having regular contact with Dan and he has shown genuine commitment to getting his tennis career

back on track," said Lawn Tennis Association performance director Simon Timson. "We have provided a structured programme of sports science and medi-

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cine support to help his journey since Dan became eligible again." "If there is a lesson to be learned here it's that it is every athlete's responsibility

for what they put into their bodies," said Evans. The LTA says Dan Evans has kept his side of the bargain in the six weeks since he returned to full training - and has therefore earned a helping hand. Evans currently stands in 994th place in the ATP rankings - France's Yannick Jankovits, at 343 in the world, was the last direct entrant into the main draw when the list was released last week. No-one should be penalised indefinitely for failing a drugs test, but I take the view that invitations to tournaments are inappropriate when players return in these circumstances. The LTA, though, set a precedent when they offered the returning Maria Sharapova a wildcard into the main draw of last June's grass-court event in Birmingham. While that decision was a commercial one, this is more about offering support and encouragement to a British player who may one day be able to contribute again to the Davis Cup cause.


SPORTS Tuesday, 17 April, 2018

KOLKATA KNIGHT RIDERS 200 FOR 9 (RANA 59, RUSSELL 41, TEWATIA 3-18) BEAT DELHI DAREDEVILS 129 (MAXWELL 47, PANT 43, NARINE 3-18, KULDEEP 3-32) BY 71 RUNS

Pakistan’s Sana Mir enters top five in ODI bowlers’ rankings Lahore: Seasoned Pakistani cricketer Sana Mir has made her way to the fourth sport in the top five International Cricket Council (ICC) ODI bowlers rankings with 620 points to her name. The spin all-rounder is now ahead of Indian fast bowler Jhulan Goswami, who sits at fifth. Australia’s Jess Jonassen is the number one ranked bowler, with teammate Megan Schutt at second spot. South Africa’s Marizanne Kapp is ranked third. Mir, a former captain who has played 108 ODIs for Pakistan since making her debut in 2005, also became the first female cricketer from the country to play 100 ODIs during the ICC Women’s World Cup in June-July 2017. She was replaced by Bismah Maroof as the new ODI captain following a dismal team performance in the mega tournament. Pakistan Women team, however, made a stellar comeback in the recently concluded series against Sri Lanka, where the Green Shirts clean swept the hosts 3-0 in ODI series, followed by a 2-1 win in T20Is, with Mir playing a central role in the victories. The Pakistan Cricket Board congratulated the former captain on her latest accolade. ageNcIeS

Bayern star Vidal set to miss Real semi-final after knee surgery

Rana, RuSSell hanD a Defeat tO DaReDeVIlS

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S Andre Russell the most valuable T20 player in the world? He has the stats (and the smart stats) to back such a claim, and on Monday he added to his vast body of work with a brief and brutal assault that transformed the mood of what had until then been an edgy battle for first-innings points. Russell came in with Kolkata Knight Riders 113 for 4 in the 14th over. He departed 22 balls later, having added 61 to his team’s total in the company of the impressive Nitish Rana. He only faced 12 balls, but he hit six of them for six. Knight Riders finished with exactly 200. This was a difficult target against Knight Riders’ spin attack, on a pitch offering a good amount of turn. Delhi Daredevils needed a strong start; they ended up slipping to 24 for 3. It was all uphill from there, and Daredevils didn’t have the legs for the climb, with none of their batsmen getting into double figures apart from Rishabh Pant and Glenn Maxwell, who threatened briefly to make this a contest with a 61-run stand for the fourth wicket in 33 balls. Daredevils were bowled out for 129, with 5.4 overs still to play. UThaPPa, raNa MaKe UP For MiSFiriNG: Chris Lynn likes pace but doesn’t score as quickly against spin. Sunil Narine likes spin, but isn’t too fond of fast, short bowling (16 off 20 balls against this type of bowling last season, and four dismissals). It’s a hard-opening pair to plan against, and Daredevils, having chosen to bowl, went all pace at the start. It worked: Trent Boult started the game with the first

maiden of the season, to an off-colour Lynn who struggled for timing, and then sent back Narine with a well-directed bouncer. After that early dose of pace, it was all spin from overs 6-10, presumably in an effort to keep Lynn quiet. Daredevils managed that, as Lynn ended the 10th over batting on 28 off 25, but the batsmen at the other end compensated, with Robin Uthappa and Nitish Rana hitting five sixes between them in that phase. Knight Riders ended the first half of their innings at 85 for 2. rUSSeLL rUiNS ShaMi’S NiGhT: It remained like that for a while: runs coming quickly at one end but not quite at the other. Mohammed Shami, varying his pace constantly, went for only 11 in his first two overs, the 11th and 13th of Knight Riders’ innings, and sent back Lynn with a well-disguised knuckleball. Vijay Shankar and Chris Morris, meanwhile. went for 12 and 15 against Rana and Dinesh Karthik in the 12th and 14th overs. Neither team could really say it was significantly in front at the start of the 15th over, which began with Rus-

sell batting on 0 off 0. Twenty-two came off that over, with Russell ramping, lofting and muscling Shami for three massive sixes. In between, he miscued one, only for Jason Roy to drop him, diving forward after running in from long-on. Rana was the dominant partner in the next over, pulling Morris for six and then holding his shape to carve a slower one over point for four, before Russell versus Shami resumed. Three more sixes came off this over, off three very different deliveries - a wide, full slower ball; a length ball; a bouncer - and 20 runs in all. It took a perfectly directed yorker from Boult to send back Russell in the 18th over. Then Rana played a couple of outrageous shots himself - a middle-stump yorker from Boult squeezed past short third man, a scything square-drive off Morris that made deep point redundant - before falling for 59 off 34 in the penultimate over. With Knight Riders’ batting might almost extinguished, Rahul Tewatia took three wickets and only conceded one run off the last over, but the damage had been done.

I have seen ‘better players than Fawad Alam’: Inzamam News Desk

Madrid: Arturo Vidal is a major doubt for Bayern Munich’s Champions League semi-final against Real Madrid after coach Jupp Heynckes revealed on Monday that he needs minor knee surgery. The Chile international limped out of training on Sunday and Bayern are waiting to hear how long he will be sidelined for. “Arturo went down without any contact and injured himself,” said Bayern head coach Heynckes. “A part of the joint has come free. He needs a small operation and will be out for the short term, but we don’t yet know how long for.” Bayern host holders Real next Wednesday, April 25, in the first leg of their semi-final at the Allianz Arena, with the return leg in Madrid on May 1. However, Heynckes did not rule Vidal out of facing the Spanish giants. “He would have liked to play against Real,” said Heynckes. “Arturo is a fighter, he’s a very professional player and he really wants to play. “He is one of those players who can really bite his teeth, he is not squeamish and (he is) highly professional.” Nevertheless, losing the 30year-old for forthcoming key games is a blow to Bayern’s hunt for the treble. Vidal will miss Tuesday’s German Cup semi-final against his old club Bayer Leverkusen. French midfielder Corentin Tolisso is also struggling to recover from a knock. A cup victory at Leverkusen would put Bayern in the May 19 final in Berlin — another step towards repeating their 2013 treble. The Bavarian giants have already secured a sixth straight Bundesliga title, holding a massive 20-point lead over Schalke at the top of the table with four games left. ageNcIeS

Unfazed by the severe criticism concerning the omission of batsman Fawad Alam, chief selector Inzamam-ul-Haq insisted he has seen “better players in the last three years”. He has been passed over for national selection, and this time, it ignited nationwide anger. Alam’s selection - or lack thereof has been an enigma for years. Despite the mounds of runs he accumulates year upon year in domestic cricket - his average in the Quaid-e-Azam Trophy over the past four years has been 40.71, 55.54, 56 and 71.90 - the left-hander has been overlooked for Tests by various selection committees and captains over the past eight years. He made his Test debut in 2009, scoring 168, and played a further Test against New Zealand later that year, but was subsequently dropped, and hasn’t played Test cricket since. During the intervening years, he made it into the limited-overs squads occasionally and went on to play 38 ODIs and 24 T20Is until 2015. But it is Test cricket he is best suited to, his average in the first-class Quaid-e-Azam Trophy consistently well over 50. He was called up by Inzamam among the 25 probables in the fitness camp ahead of the Ireland and England

tour, only to be overlooked yet again. “Fawad Alam is an outstanding player but in the last three years there are others at the top of the list,” Inzamam told ESPNCricinfo. “We got him here in the nets but we found Saad Ali to be better, and the decision to prefer Saad was unanimous, with input from all the coaching staff and captain. Fawad is a good player and we obviously can’t ignore his career average; that is why he was brought into the camp. During my tenure, I have given 12 to 14 players an opportunity and none of them have disappointed us. If you look back in the past three seasons, there are players who have scored more runs than Fawad Alam. “Dropping any player doesn’t mean we are disregarding them. It’s easy to pick players following scorecards or statistics, but there are many more things we take into consideration. I am not sure why Fawad wasn’t picked in the past before me but if you ask me about my tenure as chief selector, I have seen better players.” Alam was last picked in a Test squad in 2015 that played three matches against England, but he never made it into the playing XI. He sat out for several years because of a settled middle order comprising Misbah-ul-Haq, Sarfraz Ahmed, Younis Khan and Asad Shafiq.

WILL CHEER FOR PAKISTAN TEAM FROM HOME: FAWAD ALAM KARACHI: After not being selected by the selectors for Ireland-England tour, Fawad Alam on Monday tweeted that he will be cheering for green shirts from his home. On his social media account, the left-handed batsman wrote: “Congrats to all members of the squad. I will be cheering for all of you from home. With team efforts and Allah ke hukum se PAKISTAN will win InshAllah.” Despite being one of the best performers in the domestic cricketer, the 32year-old Alam was excluded from the upcoming tour. His exclusion has been questioned by cricket fans, experts and former cricketers including Wasim Akram who called it ‘beyond comprehension’. Alam played his last Test match against New Zealand in 2009. On Sunday, Chief selector Inzamam-ul-Haq announced the sixteen-member squad for Pakistan’s tour of England and Ireland here on Sunday. Nine batsmen have been included in the squad to counter the difficult playing position in England.Azhar Ali, Imamul-Haq, Fakhar Zaman, Sami Aslam have been included in the squad as opening batsmen. Asad Shafiq, Haris Sohail, Babar Azam, Saad Ali, Usman Salahuddin have been added as middle order batsmen. Faheem Ashraf finds his place as an all-rounder in the squad while Shadab Khan has been included as a spinner. Staff RepoRt

tHe paKIStaN SQUaD: Sarfaraz Ahmed, Azhar Ali, Sami Aslam, Haris Sohail, Babar Azam, Fakhar Zaman, Inam-ul-Haq, Asad Shafiq, Usman Salahuddin, Shadab Khan, Muhammad Amir, Muhammad Abbas, Saad Ali, Hasan Ali, Faheem Ashraf and Rahat Ali.

Pele confident Neymar can lead Brazil at World Cup Rio ageNcIeS

Brazilian legend Pele says he is confident about Brazil’s chances at the upcoming World Cup and expects injured star Neymar to be fully fit to lead the side in Russia. Speaking to AFP in Dubai, the 77-yearold, who has been in ill health recently, put his faith in Paris Saint-Germain striker Neymar’s ability to recover from a fractured foot in time to lead Brazil to a possible sixth global football title. “We don’t know exactly what is going to happen, but I think for the World Cup he’s going to be in shape because his injury is not so bad,” said Pele, the only person to have won the World Cup three times as a player. “I wish he has the same luck I had in the World Cup.” PSG’s Neymar, the world’s most ex-

pensive player, has not played since breaking a metatarsal bone in his right foot on February 25 in a Ligue 1 match against Marseille. He said last week he is still recovering following surgery but expects to be fit in time for the World Cup from June 14 to July 15. In the last World Cup on home soil four years ago, Brazil were humiliated 7-1 by eventual winners Germany in the semi-finals but Pele feels the team under “psychologist” Tite, which breezed through South American qualifying, has the tools to go all the way. “I am confident because Tite, the new coach, now (has) had a little time to set up the team. “We have a lot of excellent players in Europe. The problem is to put the team together. “I think we’re going to have a good team in the next World Cup.” Pele said he expected few surprises at

Published by Arif Nizami at Plot No 79, Sector 24, Korangi Industrial Area Karachi. Ph: 021-35381208-9. Email: newsroom@pakistantoday.com.pk

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the tournament, identifying Lionel Messi’s Argentina, Germany, England and France as potential challengers — although he didn’t mention 2010 world champions Spain or current European laureates Portugal, led by their talisman Cristiano Ronaldo. However, he said “football is a box of surprises”. As for his own health problems — Pele cancelled a trip to England in January due to “exhaustion”, although his spokesman denied he had been hospitalised — Pele said there was little cause for concern. “I cannot play in the next World Cup but I feel good,” he said with a hearty laugh. “I had an injury, then I had to make a surgery for the head of my hip, then I had to replace (it), then I had a little problem with my meniscus, but now I am OK, I am ready, in good shape!”

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