Thursday, 1 december, 2016 I 1 rabi-ul-Awwal, 1438 I rs 20.00 I vol vII No 153 I 20 Pages I Lahore edition
Show me the money!
Pm CallS trumP
No money trail for London flats
Would love to visit ‘fantastic’ Pakistan, says Trump g
SC notes contradictions in Sharifs’ statements
Pakistanis an intelligent people, he told Pm “you’re a terrific guy”
STORY ON PAGE 03
STORY ON PAGE 02
First field formation visit
‘heIght of folly’
Sitting CIA chief warns Trump g
Cautions against ending Iran nuclear deal
CoaS visits north waziristan, Peshawar STORY ON PAGE 02
STORY ON PAGE 02
BILAwAL AddreSSeS FouNdATIoN dAy eveNT IN LAhore Inevitable Pakistan connection
NA passes Commissions of Inquiry Bill, 2016 g
IS-linked ohio shooter lived in Pakistan
STORY ON PAGE 03
STORY ON PAGE 03
Seeks to increase powers of inquiry commissions
STORY ON PAGE 04
Thursday, 1 December, 2016
PM cAlls TruMP, congrATulATes hIM on vIcTory TRUMP SAYS HE WOULD LOVE TO VISIT PAKISTAN ISLAMABAD
RIME Minister Nawaz Sharif called US President-elect Donald Trump on Wednesday and congratulated him on his victory in the elections. According to a statement issued by the PM’s House, Trump expressed his will-
ingness to play his role in resolving outstanding issues facing Pakistan during the conversation. “Pakistanis are one of the most intelligent people. I am ready and willing to play any role that you want me to play to address and find solutions to the outstanding problems. It will be an honour and I will personally do it. Feel free to call me any time even before 20th January that is before I assume my office,” the statement quoted Trump as saying. “You have a very good reputation. You are a terrific guy. You are doing amazing work which is visible in every way. I am looking forward to see you
soon. As I am talking to you prime minister, I feel I am talking to a person I have known for long. Your country is amazing with tremendous opportunities,” the statement quoted Trump as having told the prime minister. On being invited to visit Pakistan, Trump said that he would love to come to a “fantastic country, fantastic place of fantastic people”. “Please convey to the Pakistani people that they are amazing and all Pakistanis I have known are exceptional people,” he said. Earlier, Trump had said that if elected, he would like to mediate between
India and Pakistan because the region was a “very, very hot tinderbox”. But like the Obama administration, Trump also said that he would only me-
CIA chief warns Trump against ripping up Iran deal LONDON Agencies
CIA director John Brennan warned Wednesday that tearing up the Iran nuclear deal, as US President-elect Donald Trump promised during his election campaign, would be “disastrous”. “I think it would be the height of folly if the next administration were to tear up that agreement,” Brennan told the BBC, adding: “It would be disastrous, it really would.” He said it would be “al-
most unprecedented” for one administration to tear up an agreement made by a previous one. Brennan warned “it could lead to a weapons programme inside of Iran that could lead other states in the region to embark on their own programmes, with military conflict”. Since his election, Trump has been more circumspect, not publicly discussing the international deal with Tehran aimed at preventing the Islamic republic from developing nuclear weapons. But his pick to succeed Bren-
nan as head of the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA), Mike Pompeo, is a strident critic of the agreement. In the BBC interview, Brennan also expressed hope there would be an improvement in relations between Washington and Moscow. But he warned: “I think President-elect Trump and the new administration need to be wary of Russian promises. Russian promises in my mind have not given us what it is they had pledged.” Trump had said he might au-
thorise the torture of detainees, including waterboarding, to gain information, but has since said he had received advice that made him rethink his approach. “I would counsel my successor not to go down that road anymore,” Brennan said. “Without a doubt the CIA really took some body blows as a result of its experiences in the detention interrogation programme.... I think the overwhelming majority of CIA officers would not want to get back into that business.”
WAR ON TERROR TO BE TAKEN TO LOGICAL END: COAS BAJWA ARMY CHIEF VISITS FIELD FORMATIONS IN PESHAWAR AND NORTH WAZIRISTAN ISLAMABAD Agencies
Chief of Army Staff (COAS) General Qamar Javed Bajwa on Wednesday said that the ongoing war on terror would be taken to its logical end to purge the country of terrorism. According to the Inter Services Public Relations (ISPR), the army chief said this while visiting field formations at Corp Headquarters in Peshawar and North Waziristan Agency. “The war against terror will continue with focused approach to root out all threats, [and] move ahead to consolidate gains made so far by the country’s armed forces,” he said. Gen Bajwa was given a detailed briefing at
the headquarters about the prevailing situation in Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa, FATA, and Malakand Division. The continuing combing operations and returning of temporarily displaced persons (TDPs) also came under discussion. “TDPs should be assisted in all ways to resettle, respectfully,” the ISPR quoted the army chief as saying. Paying tribute to tribesmen, officers, and soldiers, the army chief vowed that no terrorists would be allowed to return. Upon his arrival in Peshawar the COAS had been received by Lt Gen Hidayat ur Rehman, Corps Comd XI Corps who also accompanied him to North Waziristan. Earlier on Tuesday, the army chief had formally taken over command as the 16th army chief during a ceremony held at Army Hockey Stadium. During the ceremony, Gen Raheel Sharif handed over the ceremonial command baton to General Qamar Bajwa. Former army chiefs, senior military officials, federal ministers, members of the Parliament and foreign diplomats attended the ceremony.
China dismisses report of military patrols in Afghanistan AGENCIES China’s Defence Ministry on Wednesday dismissed reports Chinese military vehicles were patrolling inside Afghanistan, after an Indian media outlet said Chinese security forces were making regular patrols there. India’s news outlet this month published pictures on its website showing what it said were likely Chinese security forces patrolling in
Afghanistan’s far northeastern Little Pamir region, where the country shares a border with China. Chinese Defence Ministry spokesman Yang Yujun dismissed the report. “Reports in foreign media of Chinese military vehicles patrolling inside Afghanistan do not accord with the facts,” he told a regular news briefing. Yang said China and Afghanistan did work together in some places to fight terrorist activ-
ity and cross-border crime. “In recent years, law enforcement bodies from China and Afghanistan, in accordance with a bilateral cooperation decision on strengthening border law enforcement, arranged to have joint law enforcement operations in border regions,” Yang added. The Indian report was also denied in Kabul by an Afghan official, who asked not to identified as he is not authorised to speak to the
media. China has long been concerned that instability in Afghanistan will spill over into the violence-prone Xinjiang region, home to the Muslim Uighur people, where hundreds have died in recent years in unrest blamed by Beijing on militants. China is also working with Pakistan and the United States to broker peace talks to end Afghanistan’s Taliban insurgency that has raged there for 15 years.
diate if both countries asked him to do so. Trump secured at least 290 electoral votes, securing more than the 270 he needed to succeed Barack Obama.
India court frees Kashmir rights activist Khurram Parvez AGENCIES Authorities in Indian-held Kashmir on Wednesday freed a prominent rights activist, Khurram Parvez, who had been detained for two and a half months, after a court ruled his arrest was illegal. Parvez was released from prison nearly a week after a court in the region’s main city of Srinagar ordered him freed, saying that authorities had abused their powers and arrested him arbitrarily. “Khurram Parvez was formally released from police custody... He was set at liberty after 76 days of incarceration, following the quashing of his preventive detention by the High Court,” Parvez’s group, the JammuKashmir Coalition of Civil Society (JKCCS), said in a brief statement. Indian police arrested Parvez in September at the peak of deadly protests against Indian rule of the territory. The territory has been roiled by unrest with more than 90 people killed since July 8 when a young militant leader was shot dead by Indian soldiers, making it one of the deadliest bouts of violence in decades. Parvez was accused of being a threat to peace and was imprisoned under the Public Safety Act, which allows authorities to detain anyone for up to two years without trial. His group has campaigned for decades against the controversial security law and has exposed alleged widespread rights abuses by security forces deployed in the region, who are granted legal impunity. Many international rights bodies, including UN Rapporteurs, had campaigned for his release. Parvez said he was happy to be back with his family and vowed to continue defending human rights. “I won’t let this difficulty make me bitter, instead my resolve for peace and justice has got strengthened,” he said in a statement posted on his personal Facebook page. Before his imprisonment authorities at the airport in New Delhi barred Parvez from boarding an aircraft to Geneva where he was scheduled to address a meeting of the UN Human Rights Council. He was arrested on his return home to Srinagar from Delhi.
IAF helicopter crash kills three Indian officers AGENCIES Three Indian Army officers were killed Wednesday after their five-seater Cheetah helicopter crashed while landing in eastern India, a defence official said. Another officer was seriously injured in the crash that occurred in a military camp in West Bengal’s Sukna district, a spokeswoman of the Indian Army’s Eastern Command said. “The helicopter was on a routine mission. It crashed near the helipad inside the army base as it was trying to land,” Dipannita Dhar told AFP by telephone. The Cheetah helicopters, commissioned by the Indian Air Force (IAF) in the Seventies, are multi-role aircrafts which are used mostly during high-altitude missions. The IAF, which relies heavily on Russian-made equipment, has been blighted by a poor safety record. In July, a Russian-built AN-32 military transport plane went missing over the Bay of Bengal with 29 people on board. And in 2013, all 20 people on board a military helicopter were killed when it crashed in northern India. India, the world’s largest arms importer, has been trying to revamp its ageing and outdated military aircraft, with some of the fleet virtually on its last legs. The Cheetahs have been built by India’s Hindustan Aeronautics under a license agreement with French aerospace manufacturer Aerospatiale.
Thursday, 1 December, 2016
PAnAMA cAse: sc quesTIons london FlATs’ Money TrAIl BENCH NOTES CONTRADICTIONS BETWEEN PM’S SPEECHES, STATEMENT SUBMITTED IN COURT ISLAMABAD
S the Supreme Court of Pakistan (SC) resumed hearing of the Panama Papers case on Wednesday, judges noted the apparent contradictions between the PM’s National Assembly speeches and his statement submitted in the court. The five-member bench, headed by Chief Justice Anwar Zaheer Jamali and comprising Justice Asif Saeed Khan Khosa, Justice Amir Hani Muslim, Justice Sheikh Azmat Saeed and Justice Ijazul Ahsan, conducted the hearing in the presence of government representatives, Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf leaders, including Imran Khan, Awami Muslim League chief Sheikh Rasheed. During the proceedings, the chief
justice remarked that respondents could change their lawyers if they wanted to. The court further observed that the use of irresponsible words must be avoided. Justice Ijazul Ahsan said that the Sharif family members maintained that they had invested 12 million dirhams in Qatar. “There are discrepancies between the prime minister’s documents and his public statements,” he said. PTI counsel Naeem Bukhari questioned the authenticity of documents submitted on behalf of Punjab Chief Minister Shahbaz Sharif’s cousin Tariq Shafi. “I do not want to say that Shahbaz Sharif forged Tariq Shafi’s signatures, but there is a clear difference in the signatures on the affidavit and the original contract,” Bukhari said. He said that the PM had not mentioned the Qatari investment in his speech. He said that the London flats had been bought
in 1992 and 1993. “He is not truthful and honest (Sadiq and Ameen). Thus he is liable to be disqualified from the National Assembly,” the PTI lawyer said. Bukhari said that the Sharifs had failed to present documents showing how money had been transferred from Pakistan to Dubai, Doha, Jeddah and London. Bukhari submitted a two-page summary of a transaction questioning the Sharif family’s investment of 12 million dirhams in Qatar in 1980 despite owing the Bank of Commerce and Credit International (BCCI) 14 million dirhams in debts. Justice Asif Saeed Khosa observed that there was no bank record of money being transferred from Pakistan to a foreign country. “There is no uniformity in the signatures. How did Tariq Shafiq transfer the money to Qatar?” Justice Khosa asked. Justice Azmat Saeed Sheikh remarked that the Sharifs had failed to explain how they had cleared the aforementioned dues in 1980. He also observed that the Sharifs had also failed
to explain how they had financed the construction of Jeddah Steel Mills. He said that the documents might be available somewhere else, but they had not been submitted to the court. “There is no clarification regarding funding for the Jeddah Steel Mill,” he said. He said that the documents also did not mention that the investment had been used to purchase the London flats. During the hearing, the counsel for Jamaat-e-Islami (JI) requested the court to form a judicial commission at earliest to decide the matter. Imran Khan: PTI chief Imran Khan said the apex court had done the right thing by questioning the absence of a money trail as the Sharifs did not have the money they claimed to possess. “Today’s proceedings in the apex court have exposed the discrepancy in the family’s documents and statements,” Khan said while talking to reporters. “Though the case is ongoing, it technically stands dissolved, courtesy the aforementioned discrepancy,” he said.
‘Is-linked’ Ohio university attacker lived in Pakistan for 7 years: nYT AGENCIES The family of Abdul Razak Ali Artan, a Somali student and child of a refugee, who wounded 11 people in a car-ramming and knife attack on an Ohio university campus, lived in Pakistan for seven years before moving to the US with his family in 2014, New York Times reported. Federal law enforcement officials said that Artan was admitted to the US in 2014 as the child of a refugee ─ his mother ─ and before that he lived for seven years in Pakistan. He was studying at Ohio State University as a third-year transfer student of logistics management. Artan’s shocking attack lasted just a few minutes
─ from a car careening into the crowd until the suspect was shot dead. Artan was a “soldier” of the militant Islamic State group, a militant-linked news agency alleged Tuesday. “The executor of the attack in the American state of Ohio is a soldier of the Islamic State,” the Amaq agency quoted an insider source as saying, according to a translation by the SITE monitoring group. “He carried out the operation in response to calls to target citizens of international coalition countries,” Amaq claimed. A post made by Artan and quoted by ABC television said, “I can’t take it anymore. America! Stop interfering with other countries, especially the Muslim Ummah. We are not weak. We are not
weak, remember that.” “If you want us Muslims to stop carrying (out) lone wolf attacks, then make peace,” the post reads. “We will not let you sleep unless you give peace to the Muslims.” Ohio is home to the second largest Somali community in the United States, numbering around 38,000 in in the Columbus area alone, according to the state’s Somali community association. The country’s largest Somali community, in Minnesota, was rocked when one of its members stabbed 10 people at a mall in September. IS later claimed the attacker was a militant “soldier,” the same claim as for Artan.
US for dialogue between Pakistan, India to resolve common issues WASHINGTON Agencies
The United States on Wednesday said that it is aware of the border tensions between Pakistan and India at the Line of Control (LoC). Speaking at the daily news briefing, State Department spokesperson John Kirby said that both the neigh-
bouring countries should pursue negotiations to resolve their common issues. “We’ve talked about the threat of extremism there in the region. It affects everybody on both sides. And we continue to want to see dialogue and discussion between India and Pakistan to improve cooperation, to improve communication, and improve shared efforts against a common threat,” Kirby said.
To a question about sectarian violence, the spokesman said, “Pakistani leaders know all too well the threats of extremism and terrorism inside their own borders because they’ve lost too many soldiers and too many citizens. We continue to have conversations with them about the extremist threat that resides inside of their own borders“.
Increase in army casualties in IHK deeply worrying security establishment: report SRINAGAR Agencies With the latest incident, 89 Indian army personnel, including several officers, have been ‘killed in action’ in Jammu and Kashmir this year. The dramatic increase in the number of casualties among security force personnel in Kashmir is deeply worrying for many in the security establishment, the Hindu newspaper reported. On Tuesday, at least seven army personnel were killed and many, including BSF personnel, were injured in two attacks. Of the 89 killed this year, 27 were lost in the alleged surgical strikes carried out on September 29. The attrition rate among the Indian Army has been growing tremendously with respect to the freedom fighters killed. Informed sources say that the high attrition rate particularly of officers in the Army, the world’s highest, can be detrimental in war. “If the company commanders and the second-in-commands get killed in the first wave, there will be no one else to lead or fight during an actual war,” one source said. Experts say that a low-risk option is being employed by the adversary, and stress the need to revisit practices to minimise casualties. “This time, India’s resolve to hit back in the form of surgical strikes has put the other side on the defensive. For them this is a low-cost, high-visibility option,” Lt. Gen. S.L. Narasimhan, a former Infantry Officer, told The Hindu. According to data, in the new wave of attacks, freedom fighters are able to inflict many more casualties on security forces with each attack than in the past. Data show that while the total number of violent incidents in Kashmir has only gone up marginally from previous years, the number of security personnel killed or injured has dramatically risen. Until Tuesday evening, at least 89 security force personnel had been killed in Kashmir, while almost 200 have been injured this year alone. With another month to go, this year’s casualty figures among security forces could end up being the highest in a decade. In 2007, security forces lost 122 of its men. The numbers dropped to 57 in 2008, and by 2012 the number of security forces killed in terrorist attacks fell to 15. It then began to climb. In 2013, a total of 53 security personnel were killed. A similar trend is visible in the number of security personnel injured in J&K. “We have a very unsettled situation since 2014. The government needs to get its act together,” an Army officer posted in J&K said.
ADDRESSES PPP FOUNDATION DAY EVENT
Bilawal vows to fight ‘Raiwind dictatorship’ DEPLORES STATE INSTITUTIONS’ SILENCE OVER PANAMAGATE LAHORE sTAFF RePORT
Pakistan People’s Party Chairman Bilawal Bhutto Zardari, while addressing a gathering held in connection with PPP’s 49th Foundation Day, said on Wednesday his party would fight against what Raiwand dictatorship if the federal government failed to accept his four demands. “Mian Sahib, don’t compel us to come out, if we come out then whole Pakistan will come out,” he said, recalling
that former prime minister Yousuf Raza Gilani had been disqualified over a letter, but institutions were quite over the biggest corruption scandal. “Together we will raze the dictatorship of Lahore’ throne to dust. We will use democratic methods like Benazir Bhutto used,” he said. The PPP chairman noted that when there were slogans against the PPP government, former president Asif Ali Zardari stepped forward and raised the slogan of ‘long live Pakistan’. He said the PPP would win the elections in 2018 with the support of masses and won’t let the PML-N rig the polls. Bilawal said that the doors of Bilawal House were open to all and requested his party workers to join him in making a ‘new’ PPP.
Bilawal Bhutto reached Lahore from Dubai overnight to take part in the party’s foundation day celebrations, which started from today (Wednesday). The young chairman was welcomed by the party’s top leadership upon his arrival, including PPP Punjab President Qamar Zaman Kaira, Chief Minister Sindh Murad Ali Shah and Nadeem Afzal Chan, who along with a large number of party workers received him carrying party flags. The 49th founding day of PPP is being celebrated with zeal countrywide. The party started its weeklong foundation day celebrations in Lahore, PPP’s birthplace, today. Bilawal will address various rallies throughout the week. PPP leaders and workers started flocking to Lahore to participate in the foundation day celebrations. Bilawal said
on the occasion that the doors to Bilawal House are open to all and requested his
party workers to join in the making of a ‘new’ PPP.
Thursday, 1 December, 2016
Govt GetS CommiSSionS of inquiry Bill pASSed from nA BILL EXPECTED TO FACE STIFF OPPOSITION IN SENATE ISLAMABAD
He federal government on Wednesday managed to get the Pakistan Commissions of Inquiry Bill, 2016 passed from the National Assembly amid a boycott by opposition parties. However, it is expected to face a stiff resistance in the Senate where the joint opposition has a majority. Talking to Pakistan Today, several treasury members claimed that the government was already in touch with the major opposition party, Pakistan Peoples' Party (PPP), for the passage of the Commissions of Inquiry Bill and 24th Constitutional Amendment Bill. The current session was to be prorogued on Tuesday. However, the session was extended till Wednesday to get the bill passed. Last week, Senator Farhatullah Babar had hinted that the PPP might support the 24th Constitutional Amendment. However, the senator has been silent ever since. The federal government looked in difficulty in getting the bill passed from the Lower House of the Parliament. It could only get it through in its fourth attempt.
Abid Sher Ali slams Bilawal Bhutto Zardari ISLAMABAD Agencies
State Minister for Water and Power Abid Sher Ali once again criticised the Pakistan People’s Party (PPP) leadership on Wednesday, asking Bilawal Bhutto Zardari to bring his father back to country. He was talking to reporters outside the Supreme Court of Pakistan after attending the hearing of the Panama Leaks case. “Asif Ali Zardari plundered national wealth. So he should be held accountable. The name of late Benazir Bhutto also appeared in the leaked Panama documents. The PPP chairman now only delivers speeches to hide their corruption,” he said. Chandio hits baCk: Adviser to Sindh CM Maula Bux Chandio hit back at Abid Sher Ali and warned him not to use non-parliamentary language against the PPP leadership. “The Pakistan Muslim LeagueNawaz (PML-N) is perplexed due to Panama Leaks case. Their anxiety indicates that they have been trapped in Panama Leaks and will not escape. I am sure they are becoming demoralised with each passing day. The PML-N has always been biased towards the PPP,” he said. Chandio also advised Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif to “rein in his foul-mouthed minister”. “If you do not stop your minister, then I will tell my leader that we cannot hold any talks with the PMLN,” he said. “Due to Abid Sher Ali, things are going towards confrontation. He used indecent, biased language due to which the policy of reconciliation will not be possible,” he said. He said that the PPP’s public support was increasing.
On the other hand, the PPP gave a tough time to the treasury pointing out quorum each time the government tried to get the bill passed. Leader of the house and the leader of the opposition did not attend the session besides lawmakers from the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI), who are on a boycott. After passing three bills - Pakistan Commissions of Inquiry Bill 2016, the Income Tax (Amendment) Bill 2016, and the Public Private Partnership Authority Bill, 2016, the House also unanimously adopted two supplementary resolutions to condemn Indian aggression and expressing grief over demise and former president of Cuba, Fidel Castro. The House also adopted four motions to amend the Rules of Procedure and Conduct of Business of National Assembly. Since the government has thrice failed to get Pakistan Commissions of Inquiry Bill, 2016 passed from the House owning to a lack of quorum, several ministers were seen active on Wednesday in getting the required number of lawmakers to the house. With the Minister for Law and Justice Zahid Hamid moving the Pakistan Commissions of Inquiry Bill, 2016, the PPP lawmakers silently left the House, leaving
behind the only PPP MNA Shazia Marri to point out the quorum. But when National Assembly Speaker Sardar Ayaz Sadiq declared the House was in order, Marri challenged the count, compelling the chair to recount the members present in the House. Commissions of inquiry bill 2016: Minister for Law Zahid Hamid, before the passage of the bill, had said that the commission would enjoy powers equal to a high court to initiate contempt proceedings against anyone defying the commission’s orders, or maligning and scandalising it. The government bill aims at constitution of a more powerful commission as compared to previous ones. The existing law relates to the appointment of commission of inquiry and empowering it. The federal government shall by notification constitute a commission of inquiry in accordance with provision of the act. “It is desirable that the new law be enacted enabling the government to confer additional powers on a commission of inquiry where the nature of the issue being inquired into so requires,” the bill said. The commission shall have powers of summoning and enforcing the attendance of any person and examining him under oath and requiring the discovery and production of any documents. The commission can also initiate contempt of court proceedings if any person scandalises the commission or
does anything which tends to bring the commission or a member of the commission in relation to his office into hatred, ridicule or contempt. If the chairperson of the commission is a judge of the Supreme Court, the commission shall have the powers of the Supreme Court for the purpose of punishment for contempt. The government by notification can also confer additional powers to the commission such as power of a criminal court, power to constitute an international team and seek international cooperation from foreign countries or agencies to get information, documents, evidence and record or issue letters. Any proceeding before the commission shall deem to be a judicial proceeding within the meaning of sections 193 and 228 of PPC. The final report or an interim report shall be made public provided that the commission may recommend to the federal government that all or any part of the final report or any interim report may not be made public. The commission shall have the powers to order police investigation and shall have the same powers as that of a high court to punish any person who abuses, interferes with or obstructs the process of commission any way or disobeys any order of the commission. According to the bill, the scope of the commission will be wider and it will have all the authority to constitute
special teams of experts as well as international teams to get the required information against the offshore companies and the names behind it mentioned in Panama Papers. Per the bill, the proposed commission would have greater powers than the previous law. “No suit or other legal proceedings shall lie against the federal government, the commission or any member therefore, or any person acting under the direction either of the federal government or the commission in respect of anything which is in good faith done or intended to be done in pursuance of this act or of any rules or orders made there under or in respect of the publication,” read a clause of the bill. After the passage of the bills, the PPP lawmakers returned to the House. PPP MNA Aijaz Jakhrani protested against the attitude of the government, saying that the government was not ready to give any importance to the opposition. “There is a monarchy in the country. We cannot call it a democracy,” he said. He also criticised the government for taking two weeks to pass the bill. “The government faced embarrassment thrice for not maintaining quorum in the house despite having a twothirds majority in the House,” he said. The Muttahida Qaumi Movement also supported the PPP’s boycott and also criticised the government for not taking the house seriously.
Dialogue in Pakistan and India’s interest: Abdul Basit ISLAMABAD Agencies
Pakistan’s High Commissioner in India Abdul Basit on Wednesday said that Pakistan’s readiness to exchange peaceful dialogue with India should be viewed as its strength, not weakness. He said this in an interview with BBC Urdu. Responding to Indian external minister’s remarks that dialogue and terrorism cannot go side by side, the high commissioner said that Pakistan could also put up a similar front with respect to the situation in Jammu and Kashmir
and India’s refusal to withdraw of troops from Siachen. “Dialogue is the first step in the journey towards calling truce and ensuring much needed pace in the region. The problems between the two neighbouring countries can be solved through negotiations,” he said. To a question about Hafiz Muhammad Saeed and Maulana Masood Azhar, he said that the cases would be dealt by courts. “Pakistan will readily take action when
confronted with sufficient proof,” he said. He said that millions of people across both sides of the border are spending lives below the poverty line. “Both the countries have fought wars and seen the outcome,” he said. earlier, Basit had said that Islamabad was willing to hold talks with New Delhi on the sidelines of the Heart of Asia conference scheduled for next week in Amritsar. Speaking to an Indian news chan-
nel, Basit had said that the schedule of Foreign Affairs Adviser Sartaj Aziz had not been “set in stone”. “If there is an offer of dialogue from India, then it will be accepted by Pakistan,” he had said. Pakistan is participating in the Heart of Asia conference despite continuing Indian aggression at the border. indian fo: Indian Foreign Ministry on Wednesday said that Pakistan had not requested a bilateral meeting along the sidelines of Heart of Asia Conference. Indian Finance Minister Arun Jaitley will co-chair the Heart of Asia conference.
Court cases cannot be won on assumptions: Marriyum ISLAMABAD Agencies
Minister of State for Information, Broadcasting and National Heritage Marriyum Aurangzeb said court cases could not be won on the basis of assumptions, evidence was required for the purpose. The honourable Justices had made observations to the effect that the counsel for Pakistan Tehreek-iInsaf (PTI) was depending on newspaper clippings and had asked them to present the counter-evidence they had been talking about for the last nine months, she said to media persons here on Wednesday.. The minister said Imran Khan’s new counsel was trying to contest the
case on the basis of speeches by the prime minister and the evidence presented by the prime minister and his children in the court. Whenever the court asked them to present the evidence which they had claimed to possess for nine months, they said they would present it soon, she said. Imran’s case, said Aurangzeb, had not become stronger with the change of counsel. She questioned as why the PTI leaders did not present the pages of the so-called evidence in the court which displayed in talk-shows daily. She said the prime minister and
his family had faced accountability in the past as well and every time they emerged victorious. Aurangzeb said no hurdle would be tolerated in the way of developmental works launched in the last three years. CPeC, energy projects, health and educational reforms initiated by the prime minister would be completed by 2018, she added. She said Pakistan needed Nawaz Sharif as his party had been brought into power by the people and he would not resign on PTI’s demands alone. She said the prime minister would take his case to the people’s court in
2018 and regain their mandate. “Why didn’t PTI Chairman, Imran Khan, hold meetings for the development of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa?” she asked, adding that it was astonishing that he was holding meetings to impede the work on CPeC. She raised a question on whose agenda Imran was acting upon to block the country’s development. To a question, the minister said following counter-arguments by PTI’s lawyers, the PML-N legal team told the court that they were willing to own all the evidences provided by the prime minister and his family, the court was welcome to their records, and the other party should present any counter-evidence they possessed.
Thursday, 1 December, 2016
NEWS WORLD AIDS DAY
22M still have no access to treatMent ISLAMABAD
HAMiD KHAn WAZiR
ESPITE a remarkable reduction in the number of people infected with and dying of AIDS-related illnesses, 22 million people still do not have access to treatment, most of whom do not even know that they are AIDS positive. UNAIDS made this startling revelation in a report launched ahead of World AIDS Day 2016, detailing how countries can reach the 22 million people still being left behind in the response to HIV. UNAIDS in collaboration with UNIC and National AIDS Control Programme organised the “Media Briefing on HIV” here on Wednesday with the purpose to redouble collective efforts, to fast-track actions and close the gap between people who have access to HIV prevention, treatment, care and support services, and people who are being left behind. According to the report, in 2015, a record number of people had access to antiretroviral therapy and the numbers of people newly infected and dying of AIDS-related ill-
nesses have reduced since the peak of the epidemic. However, 22 million people still do not have access to treatment or testing. The report highlights a lifecycle approach to HIV that finds solutions for everyone at every stage of life and can address the complexities of HIV. Risks and challenges change as people go through life, highlighting the need to adapt HIV prevention and treatment strategies from birth to old age. The key message of this report is that no one should be left behind throughout the life cycle approach in order to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals and end AIDS by 2030. Speaking on the occasion, UNAIDS Country Director for Pakistan and Afghanistan Dr Mamadou L Sahko said that “on this World AIDS Day, we need to implement the UNAIDS Fast-Track strategy that aims to end the HIV epidemic as a public health threat by 2030.” UNAIDS ensures its full technical and strategic support to work with all key stakeholders including the government of Pakistan, UN agencies, private groups, religious leaders, academia, media, and most importantly with civil
society and communities to protect the rights of HIV-positive people. He also highlighted key aspects to shared responsibility, broader ownership and wider accountability to meet the investment needs for responding in a sustainable manner. NACP National Programme Manager Dr Abdul Baseer Khan Achakzai said that the government is committed to scaling up targeted and focused interventions through a location and population approach to reach out to vulnerable, marginalised and fragile communities to prevent new HIV infections and to foster an organised national response. He also focused on the need to scale up community-based HIV testing to bridge the gap between registered and estimated HIV cases. Dr Achakzai mentioned that the government is providing free of cost HIV treatment, testing and counselling services in various locations throughout the country. He said that in our culture religious leaders have a huge responsibility to bear and a positive role to play in reducing stigma and discrimination associated with HIV, as they are regarded as being sources of expert opinion.
JI, JUI critical of bill criminalising forced conversions NEWS DESK Once again, religious parties express their opposition to progress and citizens’ rights, by mounting pressure on the Sindh government and its law makers to repeal a Bill against forced conversions in Sindh. They have called it un-Islamic, but have so far refused to give the public any logical or legal reasons for proclaiming the Bill opposed to a religion that says in its manifesto (2:256): “there shall be no compulsion in religion”. Jama’at-i-Islami (JI) chief Sirajul Haq talked to Pakistan People s Party (PPP) cochairman Asif Ali Zardari on the phone, and asked him to take back the bill against forced religion conversions in Sindh. Siraj said that Sindh assembly had gone against Shariah and the Constitution of Pakistan by passing this bill. He said the 1973 constitution was a gift to the nation by Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto, and everyone accepted it; but PPP’s provincial government was making it controversial. He said the bill should be taken back immediately. Meanwhile, speaking in the same meaningless abstractions, Jamiat Ulema-eIslam has termed the move as going against constitution and Islam, and has criticised PPP lawmakers in the Sindh Assembly for having passed the bill against forced reli-
gious conversion. Talking to press on Monday, JUI leader Taj Muhammad Nahyoon said that by passing the ‘un-Islamic’ law, PPP had ridiculed its own leader the late Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto. He said that his party had called all parties conferences: in Sukkur (on Dec 1) and Karachi (on Dec 6). He demanded of the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) to disqualify members of the Sindh Assembly who had voted for the bill. Meanwhile, Maulana Samiul Haq called for the dismissal of the Sindh Assembly over the passage of a bill against forced conversions. “The Sindh government is converting the province into ‘Kafiristan’ with such unIslamic decisions,” Sami, who is head of Madrassa Haqqani, demanded imposition of governor’s rule in Sindh. “Since the assembly has collectively banned religious conversion, it has committed treason with the Quran and Sunnah, and with the Constitution. There is no justification for the assembly to stay,” the JUIS leader said. It would be pertinent to mention here that conversion to Islam has not been banned, rather the bill states that no person shall be deemed to have changed their religion until they attain the age of maturity, which is 18 years.
Newly appointed additional judges take oath
Five newly appointed additional judges of Sindh High Court (SHC) were sworn in on Wednesday, here in the committee room of the SHC building. SHC Chief Justice, Mr Justice Sajjad Ali Shah, administered the oath to the newly appointed judges with very little unnecessary ceremony. Those who have been sworn in as additional judges include
Fahim Ahmed Siddiqui, Khadim Hussain Tunio, Omar Sial, Adnan-ul-Karim Memon and Yousuf Ali Sayeed. The ceremony was attended by Senior Pusine Judge of SHC, Justice Ahmed Ali M. Shaikh and Justice Irfan Saadat Khan among other honourable judges. Registrar SHC Ghulam Mustafa Memon, office bearers of Bar associations and Bar councils, a large number of advocates and family members of judges were also present on the occasion.
Asghar Illays Satti representing Association of People Living with HIV and AIDS urged health care providers for extending their support to the HIV community. UN Resident Coordinator Neil Buhne said that the “media has a very important role in the dissemination of HIV prevention messages” He also thanked the “government of Pakistan for their keen interest in the prevention and treatment initiatives.” Thirty-five years since the emergence of AIDS, there has been real progress in tackling the disease. Since 2010, the number of children infected through mother-to-child transmission has dropped by half. Fewer people die of AIDS-related causes each year and people living with HIV are living longer lives. The number of people with access to life-saving medicines has doubled over the past five years, now topping 18 million. With the right investments, the world can get on the fast-track to achieve our target of 30 million people on treatment by 2030. Access to HIV medicines to prevent mother-to-child transmission is now available to more than 75 percent of those in need.
Police recover three abductees KARACHI: Police on Wednesday carried out an operation in the Pak Colony area and recovered three kidnapped men. According to police sources, the people had been abducted for ransom. The main suspect was arrested along with eight others during the raid. The rescued persons and suspects have been shifted to an unknown location for investigation. Meanwhile, two people were apprehended in injured condition by police, after a police encounter in the Nazimabad area. Agencies
Murder case lodged against Mumtaz Bhutto, others LARKANA Agencies
An FIR has been registered at Ketty Mumtaz police station against Mumtaz Ali Bhutto, his estate manager Nadir Mirani and 12 others by Muhammad Punhal s/o Ihsan Khuhro, under sections 395, 302, 148, 149, 109, 337 and 506/2 PPC. In the FIR, it has been alleged that applicant Punhal Khuhro, his brother Asadullah Khuhro and others were grazing their cattle at the lake of Tariq Khuhro when armed men, including Nadir Mirani, his son Zahid Mirani, Imamdin Narejo, Niaz Kurio, Mor Narejo and others, came to them armed with sophisticated weapons and said to them that Mumtaz Bhutto had directed them to kill you and take away your cattle. Punhal’s statement reads: his brother Asadullah, aged 30 years, replied that why would you kill us, then they fired bullets at him in which he was seriously injured. We arranged transport and rushed him to Chandka Hospital’s emergency ward in Larkana where he expired, he further stated. They took away our 50 cows with them and threatened if we followed they will kill them too, he further alleged. The applicant further stated that on the instigation of accused Mumtaz Bhutto, the other accused killed his brother and took away his cows. Asadullah Khuhro was gunned down three days ago near village Mitho Khuhro located in the limits of Ketty Mumtaz police station. After the FIR, heavy contingents of police conducted raids in the wee hours of Wednesday at the residences of Nerejo & Mirani communities in village Allah Warayo Machi and Naundero respectively. Police entered into the house of Nadir Mirani who is Estate Manager of Mumtaz Bhutto and arrested his son named Farhan Mirani as they could not find anyone else.
Thursday, 1 December, 2016
She hbaz Sharif awardS poSition holderS of matric, intermediate examS sum of $36 billion is being spent on power projects. He said that due to government efforts under the leadership of PM Nawaz Sharif, darkness is being eliminated from the country and load shedding will come to an end by December 2017. He said that government has promoted merit at every level and meritbased policy has been adopted for admission in private medical colleges as well. He said that private medical colleges can earn profit but they will not be allowed to violate merit. He said that strict implementation of merit policy will be ensured in admission to private medical colleges. He said that fee of private medical colleges is being rationalised and merit will be upheld at every level. Provincial Minister Begum Zakia Shahnawaz, while addressing the function, said that under the leadership of chief minister Shehbaz Sharif, education is the top priority of the Punjab government. She said that all problems can be overcome by promoting education. Education Minister Rana Mashhood said that merit policy will help bring a revolution in the education sector. He said that educational budget has reached a sum of Rs 375 billion. He said that people of Punjab are lucky as they have an education-friendly chief minister like Shehbaz Sharif. Position-holder boy and girl students also addressed the ceremony and paid tributes to chief minister for taking measures for the promotion of education. Provincial ministers, including Rana Mashhood and Begum Zakia Shahnawaz, members national and provincial assembly, chief secretary, Higher Education Commission Chairman Dr Amjad Saqib, educationists, vice-chancellors, professors, teachers, parents, intellectuals, and a large number of boy and girl students attended the function.
SAYS PUNJAB GOVERNMENT HAS ELIMINATED DISPARITY BETWEEN RICH AND POOR THANKS TO MERIT-BASED EDUCATIONAL PROGRAMMES LAHORE
UNJAB Chief Minister Shehbaz Sharif said that imparting of quality education and modern knowledge to young generation is essential for achieving the goal of self-reliance and a dignified status in the comity of nations. He said that Punjab Educational Endowment Fund was set up by Pakistan Muslim League-N government with a sum of Rs 2 billion, and the volume of this fund has now increased to Rs 17.5 billion. He said that it is not only the biggest educational fund of Pakistan, but also of South Asia and more than 1.5 lakh talented students of poor families are studying at prestigious educational institutions with the income of this fund. He said that number of these students will increase to two lakh by the end of December this year. He said that had such an educational fund been established 70 years ago, a number of children who have remained deprived of education would have become engineers, scientists, doctors, bankers and professors. He said that it is still time to set aside personal interests, mutual differences, sit-ins, lockdowns and efforts to divide the nation and adopt the principle of honesty, hard work and commitment. He said that Punjab government has taken revolutionary measures for equipping the youth with education, and spread
knowledge to every nook and corner of the country. He said that scholarships worth more than Rs 11 billion have been given to students of poor families from the educational fund, while cash prizes of 25 crore rupees have also been awarded for encouragement of position-holder students. He said that talented students of all federating units of the country have been included in the educational programmes of Punjab. He expressed these views while addressing prize distribution ceremony for position-holder students in matric and intermediate examination at Aiwan-e-Iqbal here today. The CM gave away cash prizes and commendatory certificates to position-holder students. Speaking on the occasion, Shehbaz Sharif said that functions are held every year to honour position-holder students in different examinations in which brilliant
boy and girl students, their parents and teachers participate from not only Punjab but Sindh, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, Baluchistan, Gilgit-Baltistan, Azad Kashmir and other parts of the country. He felicitated boy and girl students, as well as their parents and teachers who had won prominent positions in examinations, especially position-holders students and parents who despite financial problems, provided funds for education and training of their children. He said that elite can afford to pay educational expenses of their children at any educational institution but the doors of quality education have remained closed to poor families. He said that by starting educational programmes on merit basis Punjab government has eliminated the disparity between the rich and the poor. He said that Punjab government has taken initiative in this direction and laid the foundation of a
revolution in the education sector by setting up an educational fund. He said that 10,000 boys and girls after getting an education with the help of educational fund are serving the country as doctors and engineers. He said that there is a need to work hard to transform Pakistan in accordance with the vision of Quaid and Iqbal. The chief minister said that division of the nation on different basis is due to lack of education and knowledge; as a result, those nations which were lagging behind have moved far ahead. He said that peace is essential for speedy development. The CM said that process of progress and prosperity of the country is continuing under the leadership of Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif. He said that China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) is a gift for people of Pakistan and a huge investment of $51 billion is being made under CPEC. He said that a
Malik Riaz donates ten ambulances to Edhi Foundation LAHORE: Bahria Town Chairman Malik Riaz donated ten ambulances to the Edhi Foundation while speaking on a TV show on Tuesday. Faisal Edhi, the son of legendary social worker Abdul Sattar Edhi, was a guest on the show, as he told that donations to the organisation had gone down ever since the death of Edhi. Faisal Edhi said that their organisation was facing difficulties, but they would never give up on the mission of Abdul Sattar Edhi, as he always served the humanity and never asked anyone about their religion, caste, creed or anything before helping them. Edhi made his own orphanages, old-age homes, schools, hospitals and ambulance service to serve the people, and also arranged coffins for dead bodies, which were not attended by anyone. He also stated that they want to make a school for volunteers so that they can learn how to look after the people. He added that he was looking to improve the arrangements and facilities at the Edhi Foundation. He said that they are doing their best to satisfy people and declare their total donations and assets. He requested people to not forget them while making donations so that they can continue serving people in the best way. He said that he would go on roads to beg, in order to help the foundation if needed. INP
Nurse found dead in RY Khan hospital toilet RAHIM YAR KHAN: A body of a nurse was found inside a toilet at a private hospital in Rahim Yar Khan on Wednesday. According to the hospital administration, the nurse was a cardiac patient and her death was caused by a heart attack. Police said in a statement that the death of the nurse occurred two days ago. Further investigation would be conducted if the nurse’s family requests the authorities. AGENCIES
Nine-member gang looting people outside banks busted JHANG INP
LAHORE: Preparations for Eid Miladun Nabi (PBUH) gear up with beggining of Islamic month of Rabi-ul-Awal. O N LI NE
The police busted a robber gang, including two bank employees involved in looting people coming out of banks and recovered arms, bikes, cash and other valuables. Addressing a press conference here, District Police Officer (DPO) Humayun Masood Sindhu said that taking notice of repeated complaints of looting people outside banks, a team was constituted to nab the accused involved in the incidents. He said that the police after concerted efforts collected the evidences and busted the nine-member gang. The detainees included two bank employees, including a female, who used to leak information to the accomplices regarding the amount of cash withdrawn and identity of the clients. Five pistols, two stolen motorcycles, five mobiles phones, cash and looted valuables were recovered from the possession of the detainees.
24th amendment is for saving rulers not people: Parvez Elahi LAHORE AGENCIES
Pakistan Muslim League (PML) senior central leader and former deputy prime minister Chaudhry Parvez Elahi said that the rulers are turning topsy-turvy, 24th amendment is not for the people but is “save the rulers amendment.” In Punjab, he said, people are not safe even in their houses and shops. The deteriorating law and order situation is because Rangers were stopped from carrying out an operation there, he said. He said this while addressing a reception in honour of political leaders and
workers that were arrested and jailed. Ch Parvez Elahi further said, “These workers are our brave and sincere colleagues who faced excesses and oppression with courage. They were arrested and their families were harassed in raids on their houses.” He said in politics going to jail is essential, “we have also been jailed a couple of times.” He said that the rulers are taking their last breath, they seem to be sinking and trying hard to save themselves, the 24th amendment has been introduced after hearing of Panama Leaks case in the Supreme Court to save their rule. He said they would (leaders) sac-
rifice everything for their rule. Earlier on they had bartered away Punjab in the NFC Award for becoming the prime minister more than two times and securing power in the Punjab, he maintained. “Contrary to our stance, they deprived Punjab of the quota of electricity and gas on the basis of consumption. Economic and law and order situation in Punjab is appalling, but the rulers keep telling lies after lies,” he added. He said he has started visiting different districts in order to reorganise the party. Workers present at the reception were arrested from Gujrat, Mandi
Bahauddin, Hafizabad, Sheikhupura, Multan, Bahawalpur, Jhang, Layyah, Faisalabad, Gujranwala, Lahore, Toba Tek Singh, Nankana Sahib and Sahiwal. On this occasion, MNA Tariq Bashir Cheema, Ch Zaheeruddin, Muhammad Basharat Raja, Aamir Sultan Cheema, Dr Muhammad Azal, Mohammad Shah Khagga, Riaz Asghar Chaudhry, Bao Rizwan, Dr Azeemuddin Lakhvi, Mian Munir, Azam Cheema, Qamar Hayat Kathia, Shakeel Atta Virk, Khadeeja Farooqui, Sameena Khawar Hayat, Amna Ulfat, Kanwal Naseem and other leaders were among those present.
Thursday, 1 December, 2016
ban on ahmadiS teaching arabic likely, pa told LAHORE
FTER the embarrassment of five days, the treasury benches in the Punjab Assembly were able to fulfil the quorum and it was for the first time since the start of the 25th session that the whole agenda of the day was completed on Wednesday.
During the question-answer session, opposition staged a token walkout when the parliamentary leader of Jamaat-i-Islami Dr Waseem Akhtar demanded a ban on Ahmadi teachers teaching the subjects of Islamiat and Arabic in government schools. “They do not believe in the finality of prophethood, which forms the basics of Islamic teachings, and the government must place a ban on
them,” he said. The school education parliamentary secretary Joyce Rofin Julius said that the department has no such policy to place a ban on Ahmadi teachers teaching Arabic. The demand of Dr Waseem Akhtar was endorsed by opposition members and a ruling lawmaker Ilyas Chinioti. “The constitution of Pakistan had declared Ahmadis as infidels, and an infidel cannot teach a religious subject,” Akhtar
said before walking out from the house. The opposition members came back to the house after getting assurance from the parliamentary secretary that the department would soon issue a notification, placing ban on Ahmadis teaching Arabic and Islamic studies. During the government business, two ordinances were laid down in the house while one bill was also introduced. According to the details, the Punjab Land
Records Authority Ordinance 2016 and the Punjab Urban Immovable Property Tax (Amendment) Ordinance 2016’ were laid down in the house. Moreover, the Punjab Local Government (Amendment) Bill 2016, the Punjab Local Government (Sixth Amendment) Bill 2016, and the Forman Christian College, Lahore, (Amendment) Bill 2016 were also passed in the house with a simple majority.
Kanwal Nauman, Shaneela Aslam elected president and general secretary of women’s caucus LAHORE STAFF REPORT
Kanwal Nauman was elected unopposed as president and Shaneela Aslam as general secretary in the elections for women’s caucus of the Punjab Assembly today. The meeting of the women parliamentarians was presided over by chairperson Zakia Shahnawaz, while Women Development Provincial Minister and cochairperson Hameeda Waheed-ud-Din was also present on the occasion. Hameeda Waheed-ud-Din congratulated women assembly members on the third elections of women’s caucus and
expressed hope that women’s caucus will play its constitutional role for the solution of problems of women, economic empowerment and protection of women in accordance with the vision of the government. Newly-elected president Kanwal Nouman and general secretary Shaneela Aslam paid tributes to the former president of the women’s caucus Dr Farzana Nazir and general secretary Tehsin Fawad. They reiterated their resolve to strive for the development of women. Provincial ministers and women parliamentarians felicitated the office-bearers of the caucus.
HRCP praises law against forced conversions LAHORE: The Human Rights Commission of Pakistan (HRCP) has welcomed criminalization of forced conversion by the legislature in Sindh and urged the authorities to ensure that the law is enforced. In a statement issued on Wednesday the Commission said: “In adopting Sindh Criminal Law (Protection of Minorities) Bill, the Sindh Assembly has responded to an oft-voiced concern of members of religious minority communities, especially Hindus, against forced conversion, mainly of girls and young women in the province. “HRCP welcomes the adoption of the law, which makes forced conversion a crime with five years imprisonment and allows those who convert 21 days to reconsider. The effort to safeguard juveniles is particularly worthy of praise. We wish to emphasize, however, that nothing less was expected of the state in view of its obligation to guarantee fundamental rights of all citizens. We hope and expect not just civil society organisations but also religious groups and parties to appreciate the legislation, because we are certain that even the latter do not have any interest in a person converting to Islam where the convert’s decision is swayed by anything other than a voluntary desire to choose the faith. STAFF REPORT
Bullet-riddled body found in Shorkot SHORKOT: A bullet-riddled body of an unidentified person was recovered from the bus terminal here on Wednesday. Police said that body of an unknown person who had been killed by a shooting was recovered from the main bus terminal in Shorkot. The body was shifted to hospital for medico-legal formalities and identification. The police after registering a case against unidentified murderers have started an investigation and search for heirs of the deceased. INP
Man kills cousin over property dispute MURIDKE: A man gunned down his first cousin over a property dispute here on Wednesday and fled after committing the crime. Police said the incident took place in Chak No 43 in suburbs of Muridke where an accused, who was in dispute with the family of his uncle over property share, opened fire at his cousins. As a result, his first cousin was killed on the spot and the murderer fled the scene of the crime. INP
Indian-made highintensity mortar shell found, defused in Pasrur PASRUR: A high-intensity mortar shell was found by a farmer which was defused by the bomb disposal squad (BDS) here on Wednesday. According to details, local farmers, while ploughing their agriculture lands, found a mortar shell fired by Indian forces in village LaalleywaliBadiana in tehsil Pasrur. Security personnel were informed about the presence of mortar shell, after which they reached the scene. INP
Thursday, 1 December, 2016
A tale of two cities
A costly war of attrition When does it become too much?
Mosul and Aleppo
xChANGe of fire across the LoC and working boundary is increasingly becoming more frequent and lethal. Small arms fire is now accompanied by mortar fire and use of artillery. This has led to a higher rate of casualties among innocent citizens on both sides. At times populations of entire villages are relocated to safer places. Casualties among soldiers are also increasing. The Indian media has reported 89 Indian personnel killed this year including 27 soldiers dying in the last two months alone. Casualties on the Pakistan side of the border are likely to be in the same range. There is a need on the part of the political and military leadership on both sides to review the border policy to stop a purposeless and costly confrontation. What inspires hope on the Pakistan side is Gen Bajwa’s remark that the situation at the LoC would soon improve. One expects the new COAS to reassess the strategy governing the management of LoC and working boundary in the light of the overall challenges Pakistan is facing. While the Operation Zarb e Azb has dealt a heavy blow to the terrorists, the old networks have now been joined by the ISIS leading to some of the most devastating terrorist attacks in the country. Meanwhile there is no end to infiltration from the Afghan side which may not end without an understanding with the Afghan government leading to synchronised if not joint operations against the terrorist strongholds on both sides of the border. This also requires peace on Pakistan’s eastern borders. The Indian side has to realise that continuous escalation on the part of the two neighbours possessing nuclear arms is highly dangerous while peace can bring rich dividends to these countries. Pakistan and India need to have a dialogue-driven approach towards the resolution of bilateral issues. The policy of ignoring the terrorist groups which do not target Pakistan is highly dangerous. These networks can anytime create a situation in another country that could have harmful consequences for Pakistan. Dialogue alone can lead to the resolution of outstanding issues.
Lahore’s worsening crime situation Lack of investment in human capital
NCIDeNTS of crime, in particular street crime, have increased this year as compared to 2015 in Lahore. Official data shows that incidents of extortion, car snatching and kidnapping have increased in the 11 months of 2016. There were 507 murders in the full year of 2015 while in 2016 there are already 502 incidents hardly an improvement. The Punjab government has spent an exorbitant amount of money on the Turkish inspired ‘Dolphin force’ that has over 700 officers on patrol with 500 cc imported honda bikes costing 1 million rupees each at their disposal. The complimentary ‘Police response Unit’ has brand new Toyota Corollas with each car costing close to rupees 2 million. heavy investment has also been made in the monitoring systems at the DIG and SP offices. Most of this investment is the result of the Punjab Police constantly cribbing about the non-availability of up to date technology to help them do their jobs better. With that demand fulfilled, one would think the situation would at least not worsen if not improve. This directly proportional relation between more money spent on police technology and the increase in crime is indicative of a much larger, older and deep rooted problem – the lack of investment in human capital within the police force. No amount of money thrown at shiny bikes and expensive command centres is going to bring improvement in crime figures unless the people using them are well trained, educated professionals committed to the job. In addition to the training aspect, a cultural reform in the police is necessary which can only come about when merit-based non-political appointments are made. A continuous and fair review process also has to be in place so that non-performing elements are swiftly replaced. Investment in technology in the absence of human capital development will never bring about the results the Punjab government aspires to rather it will waste more money on eye catching gadgetry at the taxpayers’ expense.
Dedicated to the legacy of the late Hameed Nizami
Arif Nizami Editor
Aziz-ud-Din Ahmad Joint Editor Lahore – Ph: 042-36375963, 042-36375965
are being blown out proportion for some sinister reasons? We need to closely analyse the facts in order to address these questions. Mosul is a city located in the north of Iraq with a population of almost 7 hundred thousand. It has been under the control of the extremist organisation Daesh since 2014. The government of Iraq along with its allies has since been trying to free it. recently, it was beleaguered by Iraqi army and its allied militias. The assault on Mosul has resulted in the death of many civilians and large scale destruction of infrastructure; thousands of Mosul residents have been displaced but these facts are mostly played down in mainstream media. This is because the Western powers have a huge influence on the global media. however, the treatment of news from another city in the region, Aleppo, by the mainstream media, is quite the opposite. Aleppo is currently under siege by Bashr-ul- Asad’s army and its allies, backed by russia. In this sieged city, Free Syrian Army and extremist organisation Al Nusra Front (currently known as Jabhat Fatah al-Sham) have been fighting the government forces. Al Nusra Front, branch of the same Al-Qaeda that perpetrated 9/11 attacks as well, is no less dangerous than the Daesh. It, however, has support of a number of powerful and wealthy “Patrons” in the Middle east. Moreover, it has enjoyed immunity from American airstrikes due to its close proximity with Western backed Free Syrian Army in Aleppo. If we focus our attention to the international media coverage of the two cities for the time being, it becomes clear that while it shows heart wrenching scenes of injured citizens in Aleppo all the time, it completely neglects Mosul in this regard, despite it going through nearly the same scenario. Moreover,
syed ZeesHan Haider
Ne of the oft-quoted lines from A Tale of Two Cities is: “It was the best of times, it was the worst of times, it was the age of wisdom, it was the age of foolishness, it was the epoch of belief, it was the epoch of incredulity, it was the season of Light, it was the season of Darkness, it was the spring of hope, it was the winter of despair.” It’s a good reminder of how the Western mainstream media of today looks at the two current era cities that have become the center of attention for the entire world lately - Mosul (Iraq) and Aleppo (Syria). It shows Mosul as a center stage for an apparently classic struggle between forces of evil (Daesh) and liberating forces of good (Western backed Government forces) whereas Aleppo is portrayed as an epitome of conflict between “legitimate” freedom fighters (Western backed) and oppressive Government (russian backed). Why is the global media biased in its coverage of the Middle east and how is this channeled? Moreover, what often goes unnoticed is that some influential players in the region, in cahoots with certain elements of mainstream media, are trying to paint the Middle east with a brush of sectarian conflict. Is the situation in the two cities really as different as shown by the mainstream media or are they two sides of the same coin? Moreover, is the real bone of contention in Aleppo and Mosul sectarianism? Or the centuries old sectarian fault lines
the civilian casualties in the Syrian government held areas of Western Aleppo by the rebels are hardly reported. The deaths and suffering of the civilians in both the eastern and Western parts of the city are more or less the same but that is certainly not what is depicted by the main stream media. This is a manifestation of main stream Media’s double standards, and the fact that the media is biased in what it chooses to show. Similarly, slightly different but relevant example is Yemen. The poorest country of the Arab world has been subjected to violence and bombings for a long time by the richest countries in the Arab world. We do hear about it every now and then but not as often as we do about Syria. If we closely listen to the pseudo-intellectuals and “senior analysts” in the Western media, it will become distinctly clear that they are biased too. The playing down of situation in Yemen is glaring example of mainstream Medias’ double standards. With further scrutiny of the facts related to Mosul and Aleppo, we will be able to realise that both the cities are suffering in their own ways. It is not possible that when bombs are dropped on Aleppo, only children and innocent citizens die and when the same happens in Mosul, only the extremists are the ones who perish away. It is media’s responsibility to be unbiased in reporting the real incidents by improving their otherwise biased opinions, instead of distorting the facts. Now let’s analyse the claimed sectarian dimension of the conflicts in Mosul and Aleppo. The Iraqi government forces have liberated ramadi and are now working their way to Mosul. A number of armed groups, backed by USA and West, have formed an alliance to take Mosul back from Daesh including Sunni organisations like Kurdish Peshmerga fighters and Arabic
tribes; Shia militant groups including hashid Shaabi, Badr organisation and Asa’ib Ahl al-haq. Above all, Iraqi army is the major participant of Mosul campaign too which consists of both Shias and Sunnis. This just goes on to indicate that they definitely are not mere sectarian conflicts as some elements of media and regional powers are trying to portray. highlighting the sectarian dimension of the conflict seems to be a desperate measure from the forces who don’t want stability in Iraq. Attempts to crack open the sectarian fault lines in the context of Mosul offensive is misleading and serves the purpose of Daesh and its backers. Similarly, in Aleppo, the forces that have surrounded the city including hezbollah (Shia Lebanese group), IrGC (Iranian Shia militia ), National defense force (a secular force with its members drawn from Syrian minorities, such as Alawites, Christians, Druzes, and Armenians). YPG (Kurd force) and Liwa al-Quds (Palestinian pro government supports Syrian government and is the largest loyalist auxiliary force operating in Aleppo) both comprise of Sunni Muslims. Moreover, Syrian Arab army is strongly pluralistic and close look at its ranks, surprisingly, reveals that its core has significant number of Sunnis. Moreover, this eclectic mix of organisations transcending sectarian and even religious boundaries, helping the Syrian government, is living testimony to the fact that the Syrian war indeed is not a sectarian war as has been portrayed by some elements of media. It seems as last attempt to salvage the dying project of toppling the Asad regime. Probably, revival of russian- Afghan War styled “Jihad international” was intended to fill the anti-government ranks in both Syria and Iraq, but this plot seems to have miserably failed this time around, in the Middle east. Syed Zeeshan Haider is CEO and Chairman of Haider Group of Companies and hosts a current affairs talk show on PTV News. Follow him on Facebook at: www.facebook.com/syedzishanhyder/
The Punjab Police One of Punjab’s more recognisable symbols
Hasan aftab saeed
here are many law enforcement agencies in Pakistan but none inspires terror in the bosom of the ordinary citizen quite like the Punjab Police (hereinafter PP). A few years ago a close friend was elated to know that his then recently stolen laptop and some other stuff had been recovered from apprehended thieves. After one daunting meeting with the ShO however, he decided not to claim the stolen merchandise. If the PP can put the fear of God into an innocent, law-abiding citizen, one can only imagine the awe it inspires in the hearts of criminals with guilty consciences. The PP is right up there with folk-music, lassi, and swearwords as things that make Punjab famous. Although the PP is originally supposed to curb crime in Punjab, its skills are sometimes borrowed by the Islamabad Capital Territory – the areas of its expertise being baton-charging, teargassing, enforcement of section 144, blocking of roads by containers and soil, and locking down cities under threat of being locked down by unruly elements. For the most part, the PP has been amazingly effective in thwarting attempts of civil disobedience and disruption. Admittedly, it has recently been found wanting when it comes to dealing with the latest weapon employed by the anarchists: the motorcycle. If its track-record is any guide however, it is almost certain that come the next such insurrection, the PP will come out fully-prepared for this challenge too. The PP is the first – and probably the only – law enforcement force in the world to employ un-
Karachi – Ph: 021-35381208-9 Fax: 021-35381208
manned check-posts to foil heinous machinations of terrorists. Many a crime has thus been prevented at negligible cost. On the manned checkposts too, a torch is all the equipment a Punjab Policeman needs in order to differentiate between upright citizens and potential malefactors. The PP maintains its excellence by enforcing stringent recruitment standards. Candidates for lower positions – the potential workhorses – are subjected to the most extensive scrutiny of stamina, height and that unmistakable proof a man’s fitness: chest measurement (inflated). An acquaintance, who was a candidate, reported of one such test that after a punishing frog-jumping session the candidates had to be literally carried into the back of the truck used for transporting them back to the city (a baton-wielding Punjab Policeman had chased them around the track – the PP believes in getting the best out of you, whether or not you agree with the philosophy). Conditions for officer-grade selection are equally rigorous, if not more. Only the best manage to make it after cut-throat competition. The popularity of the department means a constant supply of first-class officer material at PP’s disposal. In the hands of professional trainers, this material is moulded into a redoubtable force. The PP keeps this force fighting fit by frequently arranging target practice sessions, officially called police encounters, where they are made to hone their skills by shooting moving targets. Whenever the government higher-ups believe PP is struggling to live up to its most exacting standards, they found another branch of the force. It has not yet been eight months since the latest one, named Dolphin Force, was added. (Punjab being landlocked, the Dolphin Force operates on land). The CM has also announced plans to set up a special force for the protection of foreigners. Subjecting the PP to severe ridicule and scorn is, unfortunately, one of the favorite pastimes of Punjabis – hence the derogatory titles pulsia, thulla, etc. Some are not even averse to spreading malicious lies about it, especially on
Islamabad – Ph: 051-2204545
the social media. Mercifully, things are looking up after the passing of the Cyber Crimes Act, thanks to which hamza Abbasi was taken to task for exaggerating the number of abducted children in Punjab (the ‘official’ figure of missing children was quite reassuring). In addition to causing unnecessary panic among the citizenry, Abbasi had done great disservice to the country by maligning this great national institution. While one does occasionally hear unsavoury rumors, people need to realise that it’s only 98% of Punjab policemen that give a bad name to the remaining 2% honourable men of character. Under most circumstances, the Punjab Policemen are reasonable people, always willing to cooperate. In case they don’t listen to the voice of reason at first, the trick is to progressively become more reasonable until they relent (it’s usually a matter of time). While the nature of their duty forces them to be ruthless at times, they recognise that there are certain inviolable limits of heavy-handedness. For example, they never rough women protestors up. Instead, they call their female colleagues to beat the hell out of them. It is usually held against the PP that it is almost impossible to register an FIr. The FIr does get registered, provided the requisite determination, hard-work and pulling of the correct strings. This has been designed to discourage frivolous reports. Jaun elia had famously said, and I quote: ‘Police jahaan ki bhi ho, hoti Punjab Police hi hai.’ With all due respect to elia, and the respective police forces of Amroha and Karachi (where elia spent most of his life), I beg to disagree: No other police force is a patch on our Punjab Police, the most formidable police force in the region. That said, the story of a snake dying instantly after biting an Okara sub-inspector is most probably apocryphal. Hasan Aftab Saeed is a connoisseur of music, literature, and food (but not drinks). He can be reached at email@example.com. I
Thursday, 1 December, 2016
Send your letters to: Letters to Editor, Pakistan Today, 4-Shaarey Fatima Jinnah, Lahore, Pakistan. Fax: +92-42-32535230 E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org Letters should be addressed to Pakistan Today exclusively
When it comes to KBD – put own house in order The president of LCCI has said that the statement of Indian prime minister proves that the opponents of Kalabagh Dam are actually safeguarding Indian interests and are fully involved in conspiracy to harm Pakistan. The ground reality is quite different. Kalabagh dam is a victim of parochialism and ignorance. Benazir Bhutto had said Sindh will become a desert if Kalabagh dam is built, her followers in Sindh and in Punjab think the dam will deplete the Indus and deprive Sindh of its due share of water, are they doing this for any monetary benefit? Wali Khan had said that he would dynamite the dam if it was built, his followers have been made to believe that the dam will flood Nowshera and other low lying areas and cause water logging of Peshawar valley, is there any monetary benefit involved here? Three assemblies have passed resolutions against the dam, are we to believe that people’s representatives are on India’s payroll? No Sir, the fault lies within us, it is our our own people who are not allowing us to build Kalabagh dam, they are even holding the threat of breakup of the federation over our head. Let us put our own house in order before blaming others. It is we who have to warn the people of the immense dangers of not increasing our storage capacity which was last increased 40 years ago. EnGr KHurSHiD AnwEr Lahore
Is Pakistan heading towards a debt trap? due to a high increase in foreign exchange and refinancing risks, which appears to be the result of reckless high cost borrowings. The average time to maturity of public debt fell in fiscal year 201516, which in-turn has increased the refinancing risks and similarly, the short term foreign currency debt as a percentage of official liquid reserves and net international reserves increased in fiscal year 2015-16, which in-turn increases the foreign currency risk. The government of course argues that its debt management strategy clearly sets target ranges for currency, refinancing and interest rate risks, and though quite a few indicators are currently in red, they still fall within the limits prescribed in its Medium Term Debt Management Strategy 2016-19. It further takes heart from the some global dr Kamal monnoo statistics by citing that amidst a high prevalent global debt phenomenon, Pakistan’s current debt O what exactly is Pakistan’s present at around $73 billion (over a population base of debt profile? As per the figures re- 200 million) is still quite manageable in comleased by the State Bank of Pakistan parison with say for example, Greece $367 bil(SBP) in November 2016, the total lion, Ireland $865 billion, Spain $1 trillion and Central Government debt as on Italy $1 trillion. Fine, but the underlying flaws 30.09.2016, stood at rs19.9 trillion, ‘excluding in such an argument being that not only are all liabilities’, and of which the domestic debt con- these failed economies, but also that they represtitutes rs14.4 trillion while external debt makes sent a single monetary block that gets balanced up rs5.5 trillion. Meaning, this is excluding through a complex system of intra-regional government’s contingent liabilities, which in monetary balancing mechanism overlooked by their own right have swelled to nearly rs1 tril- a rather dubiously accountable european Central lion. What this latest debt number also means is bank. And then, Pakistan on the other hand is that over the first quarter (July-September) of neither a european economy nor does it have the this fiscal year, the government added to the debt luxury of printing (at will) the second leading by some rs858 billion, taking the debt to GDP reserve currency of the world. ratio to nearly 69.50%, which in June 2016 Pakistan’s debt profile presents an even stood at around 66.50%. The trend is rather bleaker picture when one starts to dissect the naalarming because despite ture of its historical debt government’s claim of and the one that has been being at the peak of piled up in recent years. debt’s bell curve, which The historical debt profile theoretically meant that has little to show for itNo marks for the national debt should self: national infrastruchave started to come ture fails to match that of guessing, unless the down, it instead is going any developed economy; in the reverse direction! public support systems of present debt strategy is This, not withstanding, health, housing, utilities, quickly re-visited, Pakistan education and social benthat when finishing the last fiscal year, the govefits remain unsatisfacmay well be fast slipping ernment to hide its ineftory; stubborn poverty into a debt trap! ficiencies had made a level stuck at about 30% clever move to avert critor more; extremely naricism over mounting row and small industrial debt by amending the base; and a top heavy ‘Fiscal responsibility public administration and Debt Limitation Act of 2005’, through a Fi- system that despite being inefficient has become nance Act that literally changed the debt goal- further entrenched over time. To make matters posts. The Finance Ministry not only diluted the worse, during the past three years, government law but also got relaxed the statutory limit of re- has been on a borrowing binge, acquiring expenstricting the public debt at 60% of GDP. Both sive foreign and domestic debt at commercial the previous PPP government and the present rates. Though it has repeatedly claimed that it is PML-N governments have been in violation of increasing its credit only to the extent of budget this condition, but with the above master stroke deficit requirements, the reality is quite different. the PML-N government has set a new statutory For example, the increase in federal governdeadline of June 2018 to bring the debt back to ment’s debt from July-September 2016, adds up 60% GDP level, as against the earlier deadline to rs858 billion, whereas, the budget deficit in of June 2013. the same period was only rs450 billion - only The trouble is that Pakistan’s debt sustainabil- about half. ity indicators have significantly worsened in the Now where is all this money going? It is the past years and especially in the last three years answer to this question that forms the real trou-
Pakistan’s debt profile presents an even bleaker picture when one starts to dissect the nature of its historical debt and the one that has been piled up in recent years.
bling part. Borrowing in itself is not essentially a bad thing as long as it can be spent in a productive manner. So, really if all these borrowing would have been put to productive use in selfsustaining projects or outlays, it would have been wonderful, because essentially the government could have claimed success in raising necessary investments and then putting them to use in a manner that not only generates growth, but also leaves the country richer in due course. Sadly, this has not been the case. The growth continues to remain elusive at under 5% - private analysts say closer to 4% - and by all accounts unless the GDP growth rate shores up to 6.50% or beyond, the present level of debt may already be unsustainable. The problem is compounded by the fact that Pakistan’s exports are rapidly declining and foreign remittances have also slowed down considerably – both these trends are likely to continue in the near-term. Owing to slowdown in exports and provided external borrowing are not capped, Pakistan’s external debt to export ratio is projected to be at 442% by 201920, which obviously will make it un- serviceable. exports, which used to finance 80% of imports in the early 2000s, now finance less than 50% of imports. Over the last decade, our exports have grown by merely 4% compared to 12% in Bangladesh and 10% in India. As for remittances, since they are negatively correlated with oil imports (bulk of remittances coming from the Gulf countries), the former are naturally slowing down due to oil prices being low. Finally, to as what do we have to show for these piled up liabilities? Answer: Not much - higher foreign exchange reserves that in effect are debt driven; public sector enterprises with a bottom-less subsidy pit; resurgent circular debt in the power sector; fancy projects that continue to run in red; and a three years spending spree that belies any kind of prioritisation, transparency or accountability. IMF in its last country report opined that for a developing country like Pakistan, 50% debt-to-GDP ratio should be considered prudent level, whereas, we seem to be miles away. No marks for guessing, unless the present debt strategy is quickly re-visited, Pakistan may well be fast slipping into a debt trap! Dr Kamal Monnoo can be contacted at: email@example.com
IT is a bitter fact that Pakistan continues to face many internal and external challenges and threats which have to be faced and overcome fighting these boldly, courageously and daringly as usual in a determined manner. No doubt lot has been achieved under Zarb-e-Azb operation and the National Action Plan in elimination of militancy, extremism and terrorism from the sacred soil of the motherland but the war on terror is still continuing and will continue till the militants, terrorists, their collaborators and facilitators are completely eliminated. All measures being taken against these anti-State and anti-people elements quite obviously involve quite heavy expenditures. Quite rightly and timely, the Federal Government has proposed to establish National Security Fund for financing all these activities to effectively cope with security challenges and war on terror in order to achieve desirable objectives in satisfactory manner at the earliest possible. For ensuring continuation of appreciable pace of economic progress and development, the country has to be made safe and secure for the people and also for the foreign investors. According to the reports, the proposed National Security Fund will be established with 3 per cent of National Finance Commission (NFC) Award divisible pool of resources between the Federal Government and four units of the Federation i.e. the Punjab, Sindh, Khyber Pukhtoonkhwah and Balochistan only after consultation and approval of the provinces. For meeting the security challenges, 29 more civil armed wings of the armed are being established in addition to existing 28 such wings and also North Security Division is also being raised to meet security requirements of 46 billion dollars comprehensive China-Pakistan economic Corridor (CPeC) project. It is also good to note the assertion by the federal government that if the National Security Fund is established with okay by the provinces, it will only be used to meet arrangements and for no other purpose whatsoever. Security related issues and challenges are of great national importance and it is hopefully expected that the provinces will accord their approval for the establishment of the proposed much needed and essential National Security Fund when it is deliberated in the upcoming meetings of the National Finance Commission. The sooner it is established the better it would be for the country and the nation as all security concerns and challenges are to be faced by all of us with greater national unity to say the least, please. M. Z. riFAt, Lahore
Anti-Corruption agency The approval by the Chief Minister Punjab to set up an anticorruption agency for harmonising Anti-Corruption establishment with modern demands and making it a dynamic and active institution deserves praise and commendation keeping in view the prevailing corruption culture in the province. According to details, the agency will work in an autonomous and independent manner and will take immediate steps for making anti-corruption laws at provincial level. It is hoped that once established, the agency would not only help eliminate bribe and corruption but also perform its duties in a vibrant and active manner resulting in good governance in the province. DAniA ALi Lahore
Pollution study group KeePING in view the increasing number of unusual and extreme weather conditions due to environmental damage and pollution, the announcement by the Punjab University’s Vice Chancellor to set up “pollution study group” is welcoming. This is a commendable step as it will help combat environmental challenges faced by the country in general and province in particular. It is hoped that this pollution study group would also help the government to formulate a sound and effective environmental policy as nothing is more vital and timely than modern environmentalism because we must save ourselves from our own immediate folly. SHEHAr BAnO SyED Lahore
10 FOREIGN NEWS
Thursday, 1 December, 2016
AssAd, Allies Aim to seize All Aleppo before trump tAkes power: officiAl BEIRUT
yria and its allies aim to drive rebels from aleppo before Donald Trump takes office as U.S. President, a senior official in the pro-Damascus military alliance said, as pro-government forces surged to their biggest victories in the city for years. rebels face one of their gravest moments of the war after pro-government forces routed fighters over the past few days from more than a third of the territory they controlled in the city. Thousands of civilians have fled for safety. The pro-government official, who declined to be identified in order to speak freely, nevertheless indi-
cated that the next phase of the campaign could be more difficult as the army and its allies seek to capture more densely populated areas. rebel fighters fought fiercely to stop government forces advancing deeper into the opposition-held enclave on Tuesday, confronting pro-assad militias who sought to move into the area from the southeast, a rebel official said. The attack on eastern aleppo threatens to snuff out the most important urban center of the revolt against President Bashar al-assad, who has been firmly on the offensive for more than a year thanks to russian and iranian military support. Capturing rebel-held eastern aleppo would be the biggest victory to date for assad in the conflict that has killed hundreds of thousands of people since
it arose out of protests against his rule nearly six years ago. as russia and iran have stuck steadfastly by assad, the rebels say their foreign backers including the United States have left them to their fate in their besieged enclave of eastern aleppo, Syria’s biggest city before the civil war. Government forces backed by Shi’ite militias from iran, Lebanon and iraq punched into the rebelheld area from the northeast last week. The senior, pro-assad official said the rebel lines had collapsed more quickly than expected. “The russians want to complete the operation before Trump takes power,” said the official, repeating a previous timetable which pro-Damascus sources had said was drawn up to mitigate the
risks of any shift in U.S. policy towards the war in Syria. The russian Defence Ministry did not immediately respond when asked whether it had drawn up such a timeline. Trump, who takes office on Jan. 20, has indicated that he may abandon support for Syrian rebels who have received military aid from states including the United States, Turkey, Saudi arabia and Qatar, and could even cooperate with russia against islamic State in Syria. The United States has offered aid including military support to some rebel groups under President Barack Obama, though the rebels have always said this backing has fallen well short of what they need against better armed government forces.
FOREIGN NEWS 11
Thursday, 1 December, 2016
Hardliners push agenda as 'blasphemy case' ignites Indonesia
hen Jakarta governor Basuki Tjahaja Purnama had some of the capital's sprawling slums levelled this spring, Muslim groups including the hardline 'islamic Defenders Front' (FPi) moved in quickly to help some of the city's poorest residents. The offer of food, shelter, clothes and money was a lifeline to the struggling families. But religious conservatives, who had long opposed Purnama because he was a Christian, did not stop there. after a video circulated in October of Purnama, also known as 'ahok', making comments that some Muslims said insulted the holy Quran, the FPi went into overdrive.
it called for his arrest, bombarded its social media pages with fiery messages and rallied some 150,000 protesters to the streets of the capital earlier this month. With another mass protest slated for Dec 2, the FPi has helped trigger a crisis that has engulfed President Joko Widodo, seen as a close ally of Purnama, and damaged the hitherto popular governor's hopes of re-election in a ballot in February. The FPi, which divides opinion in indonesia, has also seized the political agenda, using the blasphemy scandal to get people on to the streets and pushing a message of intolerance in a Muslim-dominated country where hardline posturing rarely makes waves. "Most victims of evictions are Muslim and they're already resisting that, quite apart from the
blasphemy," novel Chaidir Bamukmin, head of the FPi's Jakarta chapter, told reuters. "So on top of that, there's an insult to their religion. That just makes their spirit stronger. We had already been resisting ahok for years. The blasphemy is the peak of the problem and our resistance." The FPi said it wants Friday's demonstration to be peaceful, but minorities, including Christians and the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender community are fearful of the group. around 50 FPi members barged into a Jakarta apartment at the weekend to break up what they said was a gay sex party. The group has vowed to continue to target the LGBT community. a worried Widodo has moved to soothe foreign
investors, whose money is key to the economy. While seeing no disruption yet to business and suggesting tensions may ease after city elections, they are nonetheless wary. "in an overwhelmingly tolerant country ... a small group of hardliners seem to be able to push their agenda, and you have to question what direction the country is headed in," said a foreign business leader in Jakarta who declined to be named. CanCelled trip, soothing words: Widodo postponed a visit to australia soon after the nov 4 demonstrations, the largest in Jakarta in years. Throughout november he has held talks with top political, religious and military officials to quell talk of instability, and announced he would "prevent the growth of radicalism".
12 WORLD VIEW
Thursday, 1 December, 2016
IndIa took 35 years to make Its fIrst tank (and It was a total dIsaster) NaTioNal iNTeresT
N the mid-1970s, India began development on a totally new, advanced main battle tank that would satisfy the needs of the country’s Armored Corps. An impressive combination of firepower, armor protection and mobility, the tank was to be India’s first indigenously produced tank—and one of the best in the world. The service date for the tank, known as Arjun, was confidently set for 1985. Instead, the Arjun suffered a tortuously long development period spanning two centuries. The final result, introduced into the army twentysix years later than originally planned, is a mess of a tank that not even the Indian Army wants. The Indian Army’s Armored Corps has been in existence for seventy-four years, tracing its roots to the Second World War, and has fought in every one of India’s wars with neighbor and rival Pakistan. The Corps has across has sixty-three armored regiments (the equivalent of battalions), spread across eight armored and mechanized divisions and another seven armored and mechanized brigades. The decision to produce an indigenous Indian tank was made in 1972, shortly after the Indo-Pakistani War of 1971. In 1974, the state-run Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) was tasked with developing the tank. It was to be a fortyton vehicle, armed with a 105-millimeter gun. It would be small enough to be strategically mobile, capable of being shuttled on internal lines (roads and railroads) to vital sectors along the long border with Pakistan. DRDO decided to make the tank, called Arjun, a mostly Indian design. The Combat Vehicles Research and Development Establishment, part of DRDO, was to design the hull, armor, turret, gun and running gear. The main gun and engine would be imported. Unfortunately, India’s defense-industrial base was nowhere near capable of creating such a vehicle. As if that weren’t enough of an obstacle, India’s world-famous bureaucracy and red-tape machine was another enemy to progress. Today, the Arjun Mk 1 is a sixty-two-ton tank, complete with a 120-millimeter gun, advanced composite armor, a 1,400-horsepower turbocharged engine, and advanced fire control and thermal sights. Although the tank’s specifications are impressive, the actual product leaves a lot to be desired. By 2009, thirty-five years after it was originally conceived, Arjun was “ready” for production. Despite shortcomings revealed in testing, the Indian Army was forced to buy 124 Arjuns—enough to equip just two armored regiments—to keep state tank production facilities open. By mid-2015, two years after the purchase was complete, nearly 75 percent of the Arjun force was inoperable due to technical problems. Arjun’s armored protection evolved significantly over thirty-five years. The tank is fitted with Kanchan armor, a locally designed composite blend that is allegedly similar to British Chobham armor. Kanchan is rumored to be capable of shrugging off point-blank shots from the 125-millimeter gun of Indian T-72 tanks. Arjun is so well protected that its weight ballooned from the original forty-ton specification to sixty-two tons.
This increase in protection came at a cost—decreased tactical and operational mobility. As originally specified, a forty-ton tank with a 1,400-horsepower engine would have an impressive 35-to-1 horsepower-toweight ratio. Unfortunately, Arjun’s weight ballooned from forty to sixty-two tons, with no corresponding increase in engine power. DRDO finally settled on a German-made MTU 1,400-horsepower water-cooled diesel engine, complemented with an Indian supercharger. Arjun’s horsepower-to-weight ratio sank to a mediocre 22.5 to 1. The vehicle’s weight also means it cannot be used in Punjab and the northern deserts of India in India’s “Cold Start” offensive strategy against Pakistan. The Arjun’s development period was so long that major design decisions became completely obsolete. The 105-millimeter gun, perfectly adequate in the 1970s when stacked up against the NATO-standard 105-millimeter L7 gun (the M68 in U.S. Army service), and the 115-millimeter gun of the Soviet T-62 tank, were obsolete by the early 1990s. In the end, the Arjun ended up with a 120-millimeter rifled barrel gun, capable of firing High Explosive, Armor-Piercing Discarding Sabot rounds, High Explosive Anti-Tank rounds and, perhaps not unusually for a former British colony, High Explosive, Squash Head rounds. DRDO conducted test firings of the Israeli-made LAHAT long-range antitank missile, which offered a high probability of kill against armored vehicles out to six thousand meters, but the round was dropped in 2014. DRDO claims it will develop an indigenous equivalent. How did Arjun, which took decades to develop, end up being such a disappointment? The tank took so long to develop that technologies not even invented when Arjun was first proposed had to be added to the tank. GPS navigation, laser warning receivers, non-explosivereactive armor and other innovations were merely research papers in 1974, but by the early 2000s were must-have inventions that added to the tank’s complexity, weight and cost. The inability of DRDO to put its foot down and admit that it could not build the tank on time and on schedule doomed the tank. India’s state of the military art was such that a new tank would out of necessity face a prolonged development time. The more the tank project dragged on, the more the tank needed to be redesigned to incorporate new technologies. The tank was trapped for decades in a development death spiral, and the end product is correspondingly mediocre. DRDO is busy at work designing Arjun Mk II, which will allegedly contain many improvements over the original Mk I. The Indian Army for its part is adamant it wants no part of the Mk II until prototypes perform satisfactorily, and would much rather buy an overseas tank. The army, for now prefers the Russian T90 tank and may express interest in the brand new T-14 Armata tank. Russian state media has reported that India is interested in the Armata as the basis of a new, localized tank. Whether that’s true remains to be seen. Kyle Mizokami is a defense and national-security writer based in San Francisco who has appeared in the Diplomat, Foreign Policy, War is Boring and the Daily Beast. In 2009 he cofounded the defense and security blog Japan Security Watch.
INDIA TAKES A BIG STEP BACK FROM CASH New Yorker NathaN heller
In the magazine’s Money Issue last month, I wrote about a strange new economic notion: a number of economists, led by Kenneth S. Rogoff, at Harvard, are advocating phasing out big bills in the U.S. and letting the remaining cash fall toward disuse. Their goal is partly to smother an increasingly vast underground economy. (About eighty per cent of the U.S. currency is in hundred-dollar bills, but the whereabouts of much of that cash is unknown.) But, as I noted in the piece, the American economists are not alone in their cashless tendencies, and in recent weeks their club increased by hundreds of millions of people. Earlier this month, the Indian Prime Minister, Narendra Modi, announced that, in an effort to account for his nation’s “black money,” the two largest Indian bills, the five-hundredrupee and thousand-rupee notes—which together make up eighty-six per cent of outstanding cash—would immediately be retired as legal tender. Rarely has an appealing hypothetical encountered so extreme a realworld test case, and so soon. The decree is striking especially because Indian life is cash-intensive (even massive transactions, such as real-estate purchases, are routinely conducted in paper currency) and because the banned bills are in widespread daily use. A thousand rupees is about fifteen U.S. dollars; holders of the discontinued bills, Modi decreed, must trade in their obsolete notes within fifty days, after which time they will be worthless. In his recent book, “The Curse of Cash,” Rogoff laid out a plan by which the U.S. could phase out its (commercially rare) large bills over nearly a decade. The discontinued rupee bills, by contrast, will be worthless by the New Year. The move is the equivalent of an ocean liner turning with the radius of a Porsche. Although India undertook similar demonetization projects in 1946 and 1978, Modi’s program is recently unmatched in scale and speed. It fits, however, with one of his big endeavors as Prime Minister. As I mentioned in my magazine piece, Modi has been on an intensifying crusade against banknotes, in an effort to stem widespread tax evasion and corruption. (India loses more than three hundred billion dollars in tax evasion every year.) Even by that standard, though, his new, fastacting plan is radical. I phoned Rogoff to see what he made of India’s new big-bill ban. “It’s a big show of force,” he told me. Strictly speaking, the Indian demonetization is less about phasing out cash than it is about accounting for underground money. (With big bills about to be worthless, citizens will have to produce their secret stashes for exchange; those showing up with unaccounted-for millions are apt to raise red flags.) Instead of driving the cash economy into small bills, as Rogoff advises, Modi has introduced a bigger bill, a new two-thousand-rupee note, which Indians can get when they bring in their discontinued bills. In Rogoff’s view, though, Modi’s
actions will have the long-term effect of reining in the cash economy by making Indians wary of paper money. “When you take bills out of circulation at short notice, that’s going to cut cash demand in the future,” Rogoff told me. “He’s aiming, really, at the psychology.” On his blog this month, Rogoff wrote about the crucial differences between India’s move and his U.S.-tailored plan (loosely modelled on the years-long exchange program that transitioned Europe to the euro). “One idea . . . is to allow people to exchange their expiring large bills relatively conveniently for the first few years (still subject to standard anti-moneylaundering reporting requirements), then over time make it more inconvenient by accepting the big notes at ever fewer locations and with ever stronger reporting requirements,” he wrote. Rogoff told me that he is unsure whether Modi’s swift, jarring action will prove to be a boon or a misstep. “If you want to know why India has not grown as much as China, as bad as the corruption is in China, it’s worse in India,” he said; targeting huge sums of black money all at once, as Modi has done, will have Jenga-like destabilizing effects on aspects of the Indian economy. The real-estate business, which regularly underreports transaction figures, is buoyed by dark money, and, following Modi’s announcement, that market took a dive. Gold prices fell, too, as Indians rushed to convert their wealth. Whether Modi’s short-term demonetization succeeds will depend in large part on the initiative’s long-term plan. Early signs don’t all encourage confidence. Exchanging devalued bills for sound ones has been messy even for those trying to convert aboveboard money. Imagine dutifully gathering your five-hundred-rupee and thousand-rupee notes, receiving new two-thousand-rupee notes in exchange, and going to buy a loaf of bread. What do you get as change for your new money? Not, you’d hope, more of the hotpotato notes that you just purged. But, in practice, Rogoff said, the banned notes are likely to keep circulating in daily transactions, with mounting agitation, until they lose their exchange value, on December 30th. Rogoff told me that he thinks it will be “a few years” before economists can cast an informed verdict on Modi’s plan. “Over the long run, there will be a lot of studies: Is it a success? Is it something people are going to remember? Does it inspire other laws and other changes that energize people against corruption?” he said. The results will show how viable such rapid, radical action is for other countries, such as the U.S. At one point, Rogoff told me, he mulled the possibility of a bill-replacement program, like Modi’s, but he came away with the conviction that it would never fly. “I kind of felt, given the way it is in the United States, the plan I was proposing was the simplest and the least inconvenient,” he said. Modi, in his uncertain new effort, has sought something else. Nathan Heller began contributing to The New Yorker in 2011, and joined the magazine as a staff writer in 2013.
IF TRUMP TWEETS IT, IS IT NEWS? A QUANDARY FOR THE NEWS MEDIA New York Times MIChael M GrYNBaUM aNd SYdNeY eMBer
Since Election Day, Presidentelect Donald J. Trump has proposed a U-turn in American diplomatic relations with Cuba, boasted about negotiations with a major manufacturer, trumpeted false claims about millions of illegal votes and hinted that he might upend current free speech laws by banning flag burning. As news organizations grapple with covering a commander in chief unlike any other, Mr. Trump’s Twitter account — a bully pulpit, propaganda weapon and attention magnet all rolled into one — has quickly emerged as a fresh journalistic challenge and a source of lively debate. How to cover a president’s pronouncements when they are both provocative and maddeningly vague? Does an early-morning tweet amount to a planned shift in American policy? Should news outlets, as some readers argue, ignore clearly untrue tweets, rather than amplify falsehoods further? In interviews on Tuesday, political editors and reporters said
that, for now, they planned to apply the same news judgment they would apply to any statement by a powerful leader, even as some acknowledged that social media allows Mr. Trump to reduce complicated subjects to snappy, and sometimes misleading, slogans and sound bites. “Reporting complex policy issues out of tweets, I would say that’s not ideal,” said Carrie Budoff Brown, the newly installed editor of Politico, adding: “We have to treat it as one piece of a bigger reporting puzzle that we have to put together.” But fundamentally, she said, the thoughts of a president-elect are inherently newsworthy — as long as journalists also provide readers with the right context, like whether a proposal is feasible or legal, or correct a baseless claim. “This is the way he’s communicating with millions upon millions of people, and as journalists we can’t ignore that,” Ms. Brown said. “Media would be wise to stop hyper-coverage of Trump’s tweets — they distract, distort and debase,” Katrina vandenHeuvel, editor and publisher of The Nation, said in a Twitter post on Tuesday. The historian Fred Kaplan de-
clared, “It’s time to ignore his tweets,” echoing others who wondered whether Mr. Trump’s provocative statements were a deliberate effort to distract journalists. But many veteran journalists argue that keeping the public in the dark about their president’s comments would be a worse sin. “Anything that a president would say — even if it was libelous or scandalous — it’s the president talking, and I think you report it,” said Chris Wallace, the “Fox News Sunday” host who moderated this year’s third presidential debate. “Under any defini-
tion, it’s news, whether it’s sensible or not, factual or not, productive or not.” Mr. Wallace recalled that as a reporter in Washington, he reported one-liners from President Ronald Reagan as he boarded a helicopter to Camp David. “As far as I’m concerned, this is like Donald Trump making a statement on the way to the helicopter,” Mr. Wallace said of the president-elect’s tweets. Handling Mr. Trump’s Twitter account has been a hot topic in big newsrooms. Matthew Purdy, a deputy managing editor at The
New York Times, said on Tuesday that the Mr. Trump’s remarks had to be assessed one by one. “Clearly his tweets are a window into policy decisions or his state of mind,” Mr. Purdy said in an interview. “Just because he tweets it doesn’t make it news. But just because he tweets it doesn’t make it frivolous either.” Steven Ginsberg, senior politics editor at The Washington Post, agreed. “My view, frankly, is that everybody is getting way too caught up with the fact that he’s tweeting,” he said, adding that even if Mr. Trump “shouts something on a street corner, I think it’s worth taking up on its own merits.” “In this postelection period, anything he says in any way you have to consider it and you have to weigh whether it deserves a story,” Mr. Ginsberg said. “These pronouncements on Twitter are the only available evidence of what the man is thinking, or wants us to think he’s thinking,” said Todd Gitlin, a former political activist who has criticized press coverage of Mr. Trump. There is also a novelty factor. American presidents, aware that their words carry gravity and consequence worldwide, are typically
circumspect in their remarks, opting for dry statements and withholding major proposals until a legislative or legal framework is in place. Mr. Trump seems to relish doing the opposite, as he did throughout the election season. Some have speculated that come January, Mr. Trump may rely less on Twitter, once he moves into the White House and has the Oval Office and West Wing briefing room at his disposal. But asked about this on Tuesday, Hope Hicks, a spokeswoman for Mr. Trump, issued a reply: Don’t bet on it. “President-elect Trump has amassed an incredible social media following, one he used very effectively throughout the campaign to communicate his message,” Ms. Hicks said in an email. “He intends to continue utilizing this modern form of communication, while taking into account his new role and responsibilities may call for modified usage.” For now, Ms. Hicks declined to say if Mr. Trump would move his musings to the White House’s official @POTUS Twitter account. As of Tuesday, @POTUS had 12.3 million followers. And @realDonaldTrump? 16.3 million.
Thursday, 1 December, 2016
You're more likely to be spellbound by the vision of an ideal romance today than tumble head-overheels for any individual. Because this kind of conceptual love is hard to manifest, you may have a real.
You are less interested in getting dragged into an emotional discussion now than you are in losing yourself in a most sublime fantasy. Although beautiful Venus hooks up with illusory Neptune to fascinate.
Your charm can work wonders but cautionary alarms need to remind you that you are so convincing today that you could actually con yourself, too. Thankfully, you may be able to avoid selfdeception by considering.
Shift your thinking into the higher realms of spirituality, rather than only focusing on your quest for romantic love. Find something that touches your soul and connects you to the beauty of the cosmos.
It's a lovely surprise when a significant other opens up to you, so listen carefully with your undivided attention to every word said. It isn't useful today to criticize or even disagree with anything.
You might attempt to cling to the irrefutable facts as if they are a lifeline today because fantasies can totally disrupt your efficiency. The songs of the mythical sirens are luring you away from logic.
Although you are naturally attuned to beauty, now your tastes are more refined and your opinions are more defined. Your key planet Venus conspires with fanciful Neptune to raise the bar of excellence when.
You may tumble down the rabbit hole today, a victim of sweet infatuation, but you might not tell anyone about it. Although you could be quite entranced with your magical journey, it feels safer to stay.
Your willingness to believe your own hype sets you up to promise more than you can deliver today. You might think others are expecting a superhuman performance from you, no matter how much you do to prove.
Trusting your senses is tricky business today, especially if you think you should be doing something else than what's on your calendar. It seems unfair that you can't just enjoy the beauty of the moment,
Your charisma is more alluring than you realize today, as the magical Venus-Neptune alignment heaps an extra helping of radiance onto your plate. Sharing your dreams enables you to transmit vibes that.
Some things are better left unsaid, so just soak in the pleasure of sweet stillness today and enjoy the unspoken stories of love. Your key planet Neptune sends you to the outer limits of your imagination.
ACROSS 1 hyphen — sprint (4) 3 Gorbachev's policy of "openness" (8) 8 Mild oath — aged (anag) (4) 9 Group of countries using a common currency (8) 11 One dropping off (10) 14 (knotty?) relative (6) 15 Evening do (6) 17 Absorb (10) 20 (for a German) ’er indoors (8) 21 Go away! (4) 22 Temper tantrum (5,3) 23 Academic (abbr) (4)
DOwn 1 Equestrian discipline (8) 2 The long key (5,3) 4 Jokes (6) 5 Compulsive buyer (10) 6 double-reed instrument (4) 7 Root-and-branch plant? (4) 10 Beetle — aphrodisiac (7,3) 12 Gospeller (8) 13 Person who becomes a monster when the moon is full (8) 16 festival of lights (6) 18 Old Middle Eastern ruler (4) 19 Moggie (4)
chess ANyThING BELIEVE BLINk CLARIfy CONSCIOUS dOTE dOzEN ELBOw ExISTENCE EyEBROw fINALLy fLOOR fRONT GLANCE GLIB GREET GUIdEd LABS
LARGE LISTEN NEARBy PRETENd PROBLEM RAISE REAdy SEEN SEES SEVERAL ShIfT STARE TwICE VERy VIOLENCE whILE wOULd
white tO PLAY AND MAte iN three MOVes 8 7 6 5 4 3 2 1
bridge enoUgh said
sUdokU crossword solution sudoku solution
1.Nd5 exd5 2.Bxf6 Qxf6 3.Qh7# * 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.
Thursday, 1 December, 2016
ARTS BREAKING STEREOTYPES
Palestinian start-ups innovate way past obstacles AGENCIES At first glance, Mashvisor is just one of thousands of websites specialising in US real estate. But it has a unique feature, undetectable to customers: its designers created it in the West Bank and it is run from the Israel-occupied Palestinian territory. “The great thing about a start-up is you can work on it anywhere in the world. You can be in Palestine, you can be in Cambodia, Vietnam, China. It doesn’t matter,” explains Peter Abu al-Zolof, who founded Mashvisor more than a year ago with a friend. Last week, Mashvisor became the first Palestinian company to get the support of the influential American 500 Startups venture capital fund. It is one of a number of Palestinian start-ups in the occupied Palestinian territories, long overshadowed by Israel’s so-called “Start-up Nation”. The online platform automates and analyses US real estate data nationwide to find investors the best property deals. As in Silicon Valley, the staff dress casually, drink coffee from state-of-the-art machines in garish colours, and pad through the office wearing US-made headphones around their necks. But working in the West Bank brings unique challenges. In October 2015, a wave of violence broke out across Israel and the Palestinian territories. Abu al-Zolof’s friend and founding partner Mohamed Jebrini, who lives in Hebron, found himself stranded in the city as roads were closed, 45 kilometres (30 miles) from their Ramallah offices. “He was stuck in Hebron and I was stuck in Ramallah and we were still working on our company,” explains Abu al-Zolof. And the American-Palestinian says the online nature of what they do means they can avoid many of the frustrations for other companies in the West Bank, where the Israeli army checkpoints often present very physical challenges to commerce. “There are no walls, there are no challenges, there is nothing that can stop this kind of thing,” he says. “It’s a virtual market, so there are no checkpoints where they tell you: ‘You can’t sell this. You can’t take this out of the country.'” The company benefited from the support of the Ramallah-based Leaders, an organisation that helps nurture start-ups. Shadi Atshan, Leader’s director general, told media that in the start-up scene there was “no unemployment — unlike almost all other industries and economic sectors in Palestine which have high unemployment”. “Those with good skills can earn a very high income.” The unemployment rate in the occupied Palestinian territories is 27 per cent, according to figures from the Palestinian Central Bureau of Statistics. The Ibtikar investment fund has invested around $800,000 (750,000 euros) in ten start-ups so far, according to its executive director Ambar Amleh. She stresses their work is not charity. “This isn’t work that should be funded by donors or grants. The expectations of making money should be there from the beginning because we are creating companies,” she told media.
MusliM teen becoMes first usA beAuty pAgeAnt contestAnt to weAr hijAb
Somali-American college student from Minnesota is set to compete in a beauty pageant for the first time while remaining fully covered in her hijab.
Breaking all stereotypes, 19-year-old Halima Aden is the first participant to compete in Miss Minnesota USA while wearing the hijab, attempting to clear all misconceptions about Muslim women, reports Buzzfeed. If Halima wins, she will represent the state of Minnesota in Miss USA 2017. Aden also wore a burkini in the swimsuit segment, being the first to do so as the crowd lauded her decision. Aden has never competed in a pageant before and decided to do so this year so she can help break the negative stereotypes about Muslims in the USA. “There is not one description of beauty, that in fact it has different faces, different stories, and a different background, and it’s important to embrace all of those,” Aden said while talking to a TV station. Born in a refugee camp in Kenya, Aden migrated to Minnesota with her parents when she was a child. Minnesota is known as a popular place for Somali immigrants to settle. The 19-year-old also faced a lot of criticism from home and a disagreement from her own mother, who believes that she should focus on her education. Aden, however, believes that the disagreement is merely a generation gap, and went on to buy a burkini for the swimsuit segment in the pageant. “The hijab is a symbol that we wear on our heads,” Aden said, “but I want people to know that it is my choice. I’m doing it because I want
to do it.” The Miss USA pageant was previously owned by President-Elect Donald Trump for the last two decades. This, however, changed which Trump made some distasteful comments about immigrants. The pageant is now on aired on the Fox News.
'Dronejacking' may be the next big cyber threat AGENCIES A big rise in drone use is likely to lead to a new wave of “dronejackings” by cyber criminals, security experts warned Tuesday. A report by Intel's McAfee Labs said hackers are expected to start targeting drones used for deliveries, law enforcement or camera crews, in addition to hobbyists. “Drones are well on the way to becoming a major tool for shippers, law enforcement agencies, photographers, farmers, the news media, and more,” said Intel Security's Bruce Snell, in the company's annual threat report. Snell said the concept of dronejacking was demonstrated at a security conference last year, where researchers showed how someone could easily take control of a toy drone. “Although taking over a kid's drone may seem amusing and not that big of an issue, once we look at the increase in drone usage potential problems starts to arise,” he said. The report noted that many consumer drones lack adequate security, which makes it easy for an outside hacker to take control. Companies like Amazon and UPS are expected to use drones for package deliveries — becoming potential targets for criminals, the report said. “Someone looking to 'dronejack' deliveries could find a location with regular drone traffic and wait for the targets to appear,” the report said. “Once a package delivery drone is overhead, the drone could be sent to the ground, allowing the criminal to steal the package.” The researchers said criminals may also look to steal expensive photographic equipment carried by drones, to knock out surveillance cameras used by law enforcement. Intel said it expects to see dronejacking “toolkits” traded on “dark web” marketplaces in 2017. “Once these toolkits start making the rounds, it is just a matter of time before we see stories of hijacked drones showing up in the evening news,” the report said.
Facebook brings mobile games to Messenger SAN FRANCISCO AGENCIES
Facebook on Tuesday unveiled “Instant Games” allowing users of the world’s biggest social network to play from its Messenger application or directly on their news feeds. The new games effort could be a step toward eventually monetising Messenger, which now has more than one billion users. “This new games experience allows people to easily discover, share, and play games without having to install new apps,” said Facebook product manager Alissa Ju in a blog post announcing the initiative. Instant Games is launching in 30 countries with 17 titles available including “Pac-Man” from Bandai Namco, Taito’s “Space Invaders,” Zynga’s “Words with Friends” and King Digital’s “Shuffle Cats
Mini.” While Facebook has previously been home to “social” games like Zynga’s “FarmVille,” this effort aims at smartphone users and also works with Messenger, its fast-growing communications platform. “The primary way that we expect people to be
interacting with Instant Games is through Messenger, especially at first,” said Leo Olebe, director of global games partnerships at Facebook. Olebe said the initiative is the first time games will be “a platform inside of Messenger” and the first time Facebook has directly put games on mobile devices. The concept is similar to that of “Instant Articles,” which allows faster loading of news stories by hosting them on the powerful servers of Facebook instead of linking to a separate news site. While Facebook ad revenues have been surging, the company has warned its ad growth is likely to slow, but Olebe nevertheless said there will be no immediate effort to draw revenue from the games. “Right now it’s still early in the process, monetization will come later down the road,” he said, adding that Facebook wants “to drive the engagement in the overall experience.”
Rebuilding history? Debate rages over lost Afghan Buddhas AGENCIES For centuries they stood, two monumental ancient statues of Buddha carved into the cliffs of Bamiyan, loved and revered by generations of Afghans -- only to be pulverised by the Taliban in an act of cultural genocide. It felt like the loss of family for many who live and tend their crops nearby -but some 15 years on they are hopeful these awe-inspiring relics can be reconstructed. But experts are divided on the value of rebuilding the artefacts, with some insisting it is more important to preserve the remains of the entire crumbling site. Archaeologists and restorers, mostly Afghan, German, Japanese and French, working in the Bamiyan Valley in central Afghanistan will meet from December 13 in Munich, Germany.
There they will try to move forward on the issue, as much a matter of the conservation of the UNESCO World Heritage Site as of the memories and culture of a brutalised community. All Afghans, especially the peasants tending potatoes at the front of the cliffs, mourn the loss of the tutelary silhouettes -- the largest, the Salsal, was 56 metres high; its feminine version, the Shamama, 38 metres. They were blasted in April 2001 by the Taliban, who had taken control of the province and killed thousands of Hazara civilians, a Shiite Muslim minority in Bamiyan. "For us, they were like parents," said Hakim Safa, the 27-year-old representative from the Afghan culture ministry selling tickets at the site. "I feel as though I had lost family." "In the villages local people very
much want the Buddhas to be rebuilt... They are always asking us, when will you be ready to begin?" says Rassoul Chojai, professor of archaeology at the University
of Bamiyan. But the statues were so thoroughly destroyed that it is not even clear if they ever could be reconstructed.
UNESCO and the archaeologists have gathered fragments, a clutter of rocks and stones of various sizes. But the bulk of the monuments has simply vanished, reduced to dust. "The destruction of the great Buddhas is total," confirms Julio BendezuSarmiento, director of the French Archaeological Delegation in Afghanistan (DAFA) and a member of the committee for the preservation of Bamiyan which will meet in Germany. The cliff, he says, is "pierced with thousands of decorated caves, connected by stairs, corridors, used in the past by monks and hermits" until the slow arrival of Islam from the 8th to the 11th centuries. It was the Buddhist history of the area that the Taliban wanted to erase in the name of Islam when they blew the statues up in 2001.
Thursday, 1 December, 2016
The new undispuTed king of hollywood: disney w
ith Star Wars, Avengers, Pirates of the Caribbean and Frozen to its name, the global phenomenon that is Walt Disney Studios is unlikely to pass anyone by. Fifty years after the death of its founder, Walt Disney, the studio is raking in billions of dollars thanks to a shrewd strategy in the field of big-screen entertainment. The firm is in the process of notching up its best ever performance at the global box office. Thanks to releases including Captain America: Civil War, Zootopia, The Jungle Book and Finding Dory, Disney is nearing the $6 billion mark, without counting the new animated movie Moana, which just opened in the US, and Star Wars: Rogue One, opening in December. The studio could be set to break Universal’s current box-office record of $6.9 billion in 2015. Pixar to the rescue: Disney’s box-office success didn’t happen by chance. At the end of the 1990s, box-office grosses for its productions — at the time mostly animated classics and a few family comedies — were on the wane.
Plus, the 21st century brought a downturn in the home video market due to the arrival of digital downloads and streaming. However, the studio fought back with a shrewd strategy. A partner of Pixar since the 1990s, in 2006, Disney bought the studio behind Toy Story. Finding Nemo, Cars, Ratatouille, Up and Inside Out, among the biggest hits of the big screen. Three years later, Disney got its hands on Marvel’s superheroes, already cleaning up at the box office with Iron Man, Thor and Captain America, after buying the
rights from Paramount. The studio that gave the world Mickey Mouse left creative control to Marvel but took over merchandise markets and related products. This proved another wise move for Disney, as the characters were a hit worldwide. The two first instalments of Avengers and Iron Man 3 even landed in the world’s top 10 highest-grossing films of all time, taking over $1 billion. star Wars scores success: In 2012, Disney hit hard once again when the studio bought Lucasfilm, the produc-
tion company created 20 years earlier by George Lucas. The stakes were particularly high since the company owns the rights to two of cinema’s most famous sagas, Star Wars and Indiana Jones. A new Star Wars trilogy was soon envisaged, with episode seven, The Force Awakens, released three years later, bringing together old and new generations of Jedi. The gamble paid off for Disney, as the film grossed over $2 billion at the box office and became the third highest-grossing movie of all time, after Avatar and Titanic. Two further sequels are lined up for 2017 and 2019, with spin-off episodes to keep fans entertained in between. Disney is yet to revive the Indiana Jones franchise. However, a fifth instalment is expected in 2019, directed by Steven Spielberg and starring Harrison Ford. The movie will be one of 21 films due on the big screen over the next three years. As well as its Pixar, Marvel and Star Wars movies, Disney is ramping up its strategy of updating major animated classics with live-action versions. Beauty and the Beast, Mary Poppins Returns and Mulan are already scheduled to land between 2017 and 2018.
MAD School collaborates with Karachi Youth Initiative to launch ‘Braadri Broadcast’
Ajoka’s ‘Bulha’ touches the heart of Danish audience LAHORE PRESS RELEASE
Ajoka performed its landmark play “Bulha” to a packed and appreciative audience at the historic city of Helsingor, Denmark. The chief guests at the event were the ambassador of Denmark in Pakistan His Excellency H.E Mr. Ole Thonke and Pakistan’s ambassador to Denmark H.E. Mr Mansoor Junejo. Danish Ambassador praised the play and said that it’s great to honour and privilege to be here and enjoy the soulful performance. About theme he said that play carries a powerful message which was written three centuries ago but is equally relevant even today. He said the cultural ties between Denmark and Pakistan are strengthening and it’s great that a group from Pakistan has visited Helsingor.
In one-of-a-kind musical venture, Music Art Dance (MAD School) has collaborated with Karachi Youth Initiative (KYI) to launch ‘Braadri Broadcast’. The project fuses Pakistani ethnic musical traditions and writings. The five month long endeavor was launched earlier this month with its first track followed by a new composition released every week. Masterminded by musician Hamza Jafri, Braadri Broadcast will feature an entirely traditional, all acoustic, 32-piece desi orchestra. 10 original musical compositions will be performed by the orchestra in 10 different languages: Sindhi, Punjabi, Balochi, Pashto, Siraiki, Shina, Brusheski, Marwari, Hindko and Urdu. It has been created and produced by Hamza, while song direction and composition has been led by Akram Khan. “Braadri Broadcast has been conceptualised with the intention of promoting cross-ethnic harmony by merging the writings and music traditions of the different regions of Pakistan,” says Hamza. “Research on regional music and poetry and auditions for musicians and singers preceded the song recordings.
Ajoka team visited Denmark on the invitation of Danish Culture and development organisation (CKU) for a week. Apart from play, Ajoka musicians also performed qawwali and devotional music at the World Culture Centre in Copenhagen on 25th November which concluded with "damadam mast qalandar". Both the performances were well received by Danish theatre lovers and Pakistani community living there. Ajoka team returned back Pakistan previous night.
'Westworld' actress Rachel Wood reveals she was raped twice AGENCIES US actress Evan Rachel Wood, who plays one of the leading characters in the new hit TV series "Westworld," has spoken out about being raped twice in an open letter she posted on Twitter. The 29-year-old said she had revealed the attacks in an interview with Rolling Stone magazine and decided to also share her story on social media as she did not want to "stay silent any longer." The actress said she had been raped by a "significant other" and then by the owner of a bar. "The first time I was unsure that if it was done by a partner it was still, in fact, rape, until too late," Wood wrote. "Also who would believe me. "And the second time, I thought it was my fault and that I should have fought back more, but I was scared." She said the attacks took place "many, many years ago" and that she had come to understand that she was not at fault. The star added on her Twitter posting as well as the Rolling Stone interview that she believes the assaults were "one of the many factors" that played a part in an attempt to commit suicide at age 22. The actress, who is bisexual, said she had hesitated about coming forward in the past for fear of being accused of seeking attention or being told "it wasn't a big deal or that's not really rape." "I don't believe we live in a time where people can stay silent any longer. I certainly can't," she wrote. "Not given the state our world is in with its blatant bigotry and sexism." Wood said although she was happy in her life, she was "still not ok." - 'You are not alone' "I think it's important for people to know that, for survivors to own that, and that the pressure to just get over it already, should be lifted," said the star, who was briefly married to actor Jamie Bell and had a son with him in 2013. The actress also defended her past controversial relationship with the rock star Marilyn Manson in the Rolling Stone interview, saying she was "craving danger and excitement" when she met him at age 18 in Los Angeles. He was 36 at the time and married to burlesque star Dita Von Teese.
Woman’s career doesn’t stop after marriage, children: Vidya Balan
Arijit Singh hints at retiring soon
Ranveer, Deepika win Esquire man and woman awards
Bollywood actor Vidya Balan has said it is not tough for married actresses to find good roles in Bollywood as the industry reflects the changes happening in the society. “I’m a proud 37-year-old. Women’s career are not stopping after they get married or after they have children. So, that’s going to be true even in films. Why should it be any different for female actors?" “Writers get inspired by real life people and from real life incidents. And when those changes are happening in society it’s bound to be seen on screen,” Vidya said while promoting her film “Kahaani 2: Durga Rani Singh”. She also said more performance oriented roles are being written for actresses now. “The kind of roles that we’re getting have also really changed. The horizon has widened.” Also, present at the event was Vidya’s co-star from the film, Arjun Rampal, who said age really doesn’t matter in movies. “I think age is something in mind only. It’s not something which should bother someone,” he said.
Arijit — arguably Bollywood’s numero uno voice — has revealed that he might retire soon. “I don’t think I have a long way to go. This might be my last year,” NDTV quoted the 29-year-old singer as saying. “Normally, fresh voices replace (current favourites) every five to seven years in Bollywood.” Before the singer can be poked further, he offers a solution. “I might be able to change that,” he says, adding, “If I work really hard on specific genres, I might be able to stay longer. That way, I can emerge as the only singer who can croon songs of those genres. Maybe that’s how I will survive,” he said. Arijit initially struggled to find a break as a playback singer and had to assist composers Shankar-Ehsaan-Loy and Pritam for six years before he bagged his first song Phir Mohabbat from Murder 2. “I want to be more informed about music technology in the coming years,” the singer further added. “I enjoy a quiet life, without much interruption.
Ranveer Singh and Deepika Padukone go hand-in-hand, be it at parties or winning awards. Putting their break-up rumours at rest, the two were spotted together at Mukesh Ambani’s party last week and now they were spotted receiving the Esquire International Man and Woman of the Year awards in Dubai. Ranveer looked dapper in a suit with blue tie and geeky glasses, Deepika nailed it in a chic black-n-white outfit by Monisha Jaising. Adding on to it was her straight long locks and a lovely neck piece. The moment of the night, however, was when the 31-year-old actor, who has never shied away from speaking about DP, gave her a peck on the cheek while he walked to accept the award. Looks like the two are finally ready to let the world know- ‘we are together. On a related note, Ranbir Kapoor too spoke about Ranveer-Deepika and wished them ‘awesome babies together’ on Karan Johar’s couch, over a sip of ‘Koffee’
Thursday, 1 December, 2016
Pakistan Puts 'unofficial hold' on cotton imPorts from india as tensions simmer P
AKISTAN has suspended cotton imports from its top supplier, India, saying shipments failed to fulfil phyto-sanitary certification, threatening the $822 million-a-year trade, government and industry officials told Reuters. Traders say rising hostility between the neighbours might have prompted Pakistan to restrict imports. The decision will help other cotton suppliers such as Brazil and the United States to increase exports to Pakistan. “We had received some complaints regarding insects, pests, in cotton consignments imported from India, so we
have sent samples for tests,” Imran Shami, director general of Pakistan's Plant Protection Department (DPP), told Reuters on Wednesday. “If results show non-compliance of phyto-sanitary requirements, we would have to stop the imports from India.” Pakistan had put on hold cotton consignments from India, he said, adding that if tests confirmed the presence of pests, “these consignments will go back or would have to be destroyed”, he said. In 2015-16, Pakistan surpassed Bangladesh to become India's biggest cotton buyer, accounting for 40 per cent of exports. “Officially there is nothing on the record, but on the ground, there is an
unannounced ban on cotton imports from India,” said Ihsan ul Haq, chairman of Pakistan Cotton Ginners Forum. Indian exporters have signed contracts to export 350,000 bales to Pakistan since the start of the marketing year on Oct1 and out of that nearly 300,000 bales for shipments in December and January could get stuck, three exporters said. “Out of the contracted quantity, a very small amount has been dispatched so far as the season has just started,” Cotton Association of India President Dhiren Sheth told Reuters. Supplies from the new season crop usually start rising from November in India. But this year, supplies are negligible
after the Indian government's move to ban high-value currency notes prompted farmers to postpone sales. “Buyers and sellers are not cancelling contracts. They are waiting for some positive response from the government,” said Chirag Patel, chief executive officer of Indian exporter Jaydeep Cotton Fibers. The nuclear-armed rivals have seen tension increase in the past few months over Kashmir. Last year, Pakistan bought 2.7 million bales from India and supported Indian cotton prices at a time when China was cutting imports, traders said. “It will be big problem for us if Pakistan stops buying. Other countries could
Investments to grow at 17.7 per cent in FY17 ISLAMABAD APP
Investment and savings are targeted to grow at 17.7 per cent of the Gross Domestic Product (GDP) during the ongoing fiscal year (2016-17) to promote sustained, indigenous and inclusive growth. The fixed investment is expected to grow at 16.1 per cent of the GDP in 2016-17 whereas the national savings, as percentage of the GDP, is targeted at 16.2 per cent, official sources said. Investment under the China Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) is ex-
pected to improve the overall investment climate in the country, they added. According to official data, improvement in the investment-friendly environment as a result of affordable energy, increased profitability, high capacity utilisation rate, finance availability and reduced political and economic uncertainty will help attain the investment target for 2016-17. To effectively put Pakistan back on the map for investors, the country needs to delve into investment promotion, they said. The first step requires image improvement, so that promotion activities
Govt actively working to encourage foreign investment, NA told ISLAMABAD INP
National Assembly was informed Wednesday that the government is actively working to encourage foreign investors to view Pakistan as a long-term investment destination. Parliamentary Secretary for Finance Rana Muhammad Afzal Khan told the House during question hour that with relatively young population and a consumption-driven economy, Pakistan offers foreign investors a ready market. He said the government had announced various incentives to foreign investors including no restrictions on withdrawal of investment or repatriation of profits, duty-free import of textile machinery, and a lower duty rate for import of machinery related to food sector. The parliamentary secretary said that better law and order was a prerequisite for foreign investment, which has reasonably been improved in the country. He said China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) would be a game changer in the region and attract other foreign investors to Pakistan. He said uninterrupted power supply was being ensured to industrial sector for economic growth. In response to a question, Minister of State for Interior Muhammad Balighur Rehman told the House that the government has initiated a process to improve criminal justice system. He said all stakeholders, including the four provinces, Azad Kashmir and Gilgit-Baltistan, have agreed on terms of reference regarding revamping of criminal justice system under the point 20 of National Action Plan (NAP). He said the final shape of the finding would be completed by the end of this year. To another question, Minister of State for Interior Muhammad Balighur Rehman informed the House that passport offices in remaining eight districts of Balochistan would be established by February next year. He said these districts include Awaran, Dera Bugti, Lasbela, Kohlu, Naseerabad, Sherani, Washuk and Jaffarabad, and added that the offices are being established to facilitate the people of Balochistan so that they can acquire or renew their passports with ease.
may then be effective. The Pakistani economy has recently regained stability and welcomed massive investments from China, which has prompted a positive outlook. Meanwhile, investment and savings during 2015-16, fixed investment as percentage of the GDP declined from 13.9 per cent in 2014-15 to 13.6 per cent in 2015-16, missing the target of 16.1 per cent. The public investment as per cent of the GDP grew from 3.7 per cent to 3.8 per cent, whereas the private investment as per cent of the GDP declined from 10.2 per cent to 9.8 per cent.
The national savings were registered at 14.6 per cent of the GDP, falling short of the target of 16.8 per cent of the GDP, but increased from the revised estimate of 14.5 per cent of the GDP in 2014-15. The distribution of private investment in various sectors during the last decade shows that its major recipients are: housing, agriculture, transport and communication and manufacturing. However, the declining trend is observed for the manufacturing sector for 2015- 16, which will have repercussions on the production capacity of this sector.
Nandipur power plant to re-start power generation next year ISLAMABAD AHMAD AHMADANI
Much-touted Nandipur power plant is likely to restart power generation from March next year, and the petroleum ministry has assured the supply of gas to the plant which has not been generating power for several months. Well-placed sources revealed that the power ministry has prepared a plan to run the plant and said that the Nandipur power plant was expected to begin commercial operation from March 2017 as instalment of furnace oil treatment plant (FOTP) was in full swing. However, the power plant worth Rs 58 billion could not be made fully functional as Chinese engineers even after 16 months remained unable to restore complete operation of the power plant. Closure of the plant has caused Rs10 billion loss to national exchequer, they added. They said closure of power production from the plant was due to appearance of fault in FOTP and that a Chinese firm has been installing the furnace oil treatment plant (FOTP) to make it efficient for power production, they added. Federal Minister for Water and Power and Defence Khawaja Muhammad Asif on Wednesday while talking to Pakistan Today in Supreme Court premises confirmed that the information regarding re-start of power generation from much-talked Nandipur power plant from the month of March next year. He said that this time the Nandipur power plant would start power generation as per its installed capacity and Chinese contractor is installing the FOTP which have additional capacity.” He said Nandipur power plant will start power generation from March 2017 as per its full installed capacity of 525MW, while in case of absence of gas, the plant will run with furnace oil and it will produce 425mw. He further informed that petroleum and natural
resources ministry has assured the supply of gas to run Nandipur power plant with cheaper source of gas. According to the agreement, Chinese contractor was responsible to make the plant fully operational. However, Nandipur Plant could not be made fully functional, which was the violation of agreement despite the completion of commercial operation. The power sector regulatory authority during the last week took notice of the closure and sought response from the Ministry of Water and Power in this regard. The sources further said that the construction work of the Nandipur Plant was completed during July last year. However, it could not generate electricity as per its full installed capacity because the plant met with some faults within two weeks to its start of operation. Interestingly, NPGCL in a review petition regarding the Nandipur Power Project has communicated to NEPRA that the project might cause loss of billions of rupees even if it was made operational at full capacity. National Accountability Bureau (NAB) has been investigating sky-high increase in the cost of Nandipur Plant and sought documentary evidence regarding heavy payments to various contractors in the name of repairing of plant’s machinery without following necessary tendering process. Musharraf government had awarded the project and the agreement for the Nandipur power plant project between the Pakistan government and a Chinese company was signed on January 28, 2008, when the country was under a caretaker setup. The Ministry of Water and Power has already communicated three major technical problems with the project, including the import of a low capacity furnace oil treatment plant, flaws in the long-term outsourcing contract for operation and maintenance, and the short-term contract awarded to engineering, procurement and construction contractors.
not absorb the entire surplus,” said an exporter based in the western state of Gujarat. Along with Pakistan, India mostly exports cotton to Bangladesh, China, Vietnam and Indonesia. Pakistan, the world's third-largest cotton consumer, has not stopped imports from other countries, said Shami of the DPP. But importers say buying the fibre from other suppliers like the United States, Brazil and West Africa will prove costlier and time consuming. “From India, imports come across within 10 days and sometimes within a week consignments used to cross the Wagah border,” said Haq.
Govt fails to develop e-commerce rules ISLAMABAD AMER SIAL
Despite an announcement last year, the government has failed to unveil e-commerce rules that would have allowed global online payment giants PayPal and Ali Baba to offer their services in the country. Minister of State for Information Technology (IT) Anusha Rehman had announced last year that the government would solicit mechanism to coordinate with international e-commerce players such as PayPal and Ali Baba, encouraging them to establish their setup to enable ecommerce services in Pakistan. The government had set introduction of ecommerce in the country a top priority area to counter the decline in exports. However, there was another issue as online shopping could result in increasing the import bill which would have declined the foreign exchange reserves. An official source said that the IT Ministry initiated the work with the help of the commerce ministry but there were some turf issues between the two ministries that still remain to be resolved. The finance ministry was worried that the consumers may turn to buy foreign brands and that will be a big drain on hard to maintain reserves. Pakistan had planned to invite global online payment giants. The move followed a decision by the global Financial Action Task Force to remove Pakistan from its list of high-risk and non-cooperative jurisdictions linked to money laundering. Pakistan is now ranked in FATF’s white-list, meaning that Pakistan has now internationally accepted anti-money laundering and counter-terrorist financing standards in place which were previously not available. But still neither US-based PayPal nor Chinese e-commerce giant Alibaba (which operates a service called Ali pay) currently work inside Pakistan, as the country has strict regulation limiting online payments for services. The local vendors offer cashon-delivery options. Pakistan has a growing IT industry that mainly provides outsourcing services in the form of coding to major Western clients. IT exports, which account for around 10 per cent of the total services exports, are currently estimated close to $3 billion annually. The figure is based on estimate as the county IT exports are not properly maintained under the export head. Pakistan launched high-speed mobile internet services 3G and 4G in 2014 and it helped increase the mobile broadband users significantly over the last two years. Pakistan is also a leading country in mobile banking services but fear of erosion in foreign exchange reserves is holding the introduction of ecommerce in the country.
Thursday, 1 December, 2016
FPCCI announces to hold production, entertainment, trade conference in Karachi
Govt jacks uP Prices of Petrol and diesel PETROL GOES UP BY RS2 PER LITRE, HSD RS 2.7/LITRE ISLAMABAD
STAFF REPORT KARACHI
Federation of Pakistan Chamber of Commerce and Industry (FPCCI) has announced a national production and entertainment trade conference, titled ‘FocusPK16’. Currently, the FPCCI is being led by Abdul Rauf Alam who is serving as its elected president. Heading the FPCCI-SCPE committee as chairperson is Atiqa Odho. The FocusPK16 team includes Bond Advertising as its branding and media partner, Talking Point as the communications and strategy partner, Mind Map Communications as digital partner, Aikman Road Studios as event logistics and entertainment partner. The conference will showcase the entire business of production, entertainment and media: Film, TV, Theater, Radio, Print and Digital at a 2-day trade related event to be held from Decem-
ber 3-4 at Beach Luxury Hotel, Karachi. Speakers at the conference include Minister for Information Maryam Aurangzeb, PEMRA Chairman Absar Alam, Aly Mustansir, Usman Peerzada, Maria Wasti, Sarmad Khoosat, Vasay Chaudhry, Zeb Bangash, Sarwat Gilani, Samina Ahmed, Misbah Khalid, Syed Noor, Noor ul Huda Shah, Ajab Gul, Hameed Sheikh, Haseena Moin, Sahira Kazmi, Taher A. Khan,Imran Aslam, Salman Iqbal, Jerjees Seja, Sultana Siddiqui, Nina Kashif, Seema Taher, Fouad Hussain, Reza Gheewalla, Zohaib Kazi, Salman Shahid, Seemi Raheel, Iram Parveen Bilal, Fifi Haroon, Hassan Zaidi, Usman Riaz, Khalid Anum, Omair Rana, Shallum Xavier, Nadeem Mandviwala, Sohail Hashmi, Khalid Malik, Shiraz Uppal, Azhar Abbas, Amir Zia, Rashid Sami among others who will be speaking during the 18 sessions in the 2-day event.
CORPORATE CORNER meezan Bank, isra sign mou to expand role of islamic finance
he government on Wednesday jacked up the prices of petrol and diesel for the month of December, but kept prices of kerosene and light diesel oil (LDO) unchanged. According to the government’s announcement, price of petrol has gone up by Rs2 per litre, while price of high speed diesel (HSD) has witnessed a hike of Rs 2.70/litre. However, prices of kerosene, which used for cooking purposes in remote areas where liquefied petroleum gas is not readily available, and LDO, which is mainly used for industrial purposes, would remain at the current level during December. New price of HSD, which is mostly used in the transport and agriculture sectors, would stand at Rs 75.22/litre after a raise of Rs2.70, and petrol after a hike of Rs2 per litre would be available at Rs 66.27 in the
Bank islami signs ‘strategic alliance’ with mastercard
open market in December. Informed sources told this scribe that Oil Marketing Companies (OMCs) would soon announce the price of high octane blended component (HOBC), which is mainly used in luxury cars. OMCs were likely to announce a hike of Rs6/litre for December, they added. The new prices for petroleum products were announced by Finance Minister Ishaq Dar during a press conference at the Finance Ministry late on Wednesday. Dar said the government would bear a loss of Rs 4 billion due to provision of relief to the common man on prices of petroleum products. The minister said that in order to maintain stability since April 2016, prices of POL products had been maintained despite fluctuation in international prices, and that the government had been absorbing the negative financial impact as the impact of increase was not passed on to the end-consumers. Dar further said the government had de-
Chashma-3 power plant ready for inauguration next month LAHORE MONEM FAROOQI
KARACHI: Meezan Bank, Pakistan’s first and largest Islamic bank has recently signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the International Shariah Research Academy for Islamic Finance (ISRA), aimed at jointly expanding the role of Islamic finance through collaborations on various aspects of this field. As per this MoU, the two organisations will work on a collaborative arrangement that includes the provision of joint Shariah consultancy services which will cater to the relevant guidelines and regulations for Islamic finance markets. Meezan Bank will also address the major ‘training’ challenge prevalent in the Islamic banking industry by providing technical assistance, indepth guidance, knowledge and expertise for capacity building and human capital development. Meezan Bank shall also be providing joint services with respect to arrangement of seminars, conferences, workshops and short-term courses. PRESS RELEASE
PRICES OF KEROSENE, LDO WILL REMAIN UNCHANGED
The 340 MW Chashma-3 (C-3) power plant has achieved maximum power generation capacity test and will be ready for inauguration by the third week of next month. Atomic Energy Commission (PAEC) sources told Pakistan that the unit after reaching first criticality test on October 2, was connected to the country's power grid on October 15. They said that construction started on the Chinese-designed CNP-300 by China National Nuclear Corporation (CNNC) in March 2011, and the unit was ready to enter commercial operation in December. They said that 3 x NPPs ie K-1, C-1 and C-2 are in operation and generating 730 MW presently and C-4 is going to another 680 MW to the national grid. Two new NPPs ie K-2 / K-3 are under construction and are likely to be operational in 2020-21, adding 2200 MW to the national grid. The sources said that C-3 was one of two CNP-300 units being built at the site. Unit 4, which began construction nine months after unit 3, is currently going on with commissioning and expected to enter commercial operations in 2017. The sources said that also referred to as Chasnupp, was already home to two Chinese-make units. C-1 and C2 had been in commercial operations since 2000 and 2011.
Pakistan's first nuclear power plant KANUPP at Karachi, is in operations for the last 44 years. The other two nuclear power plants C-1 and C-2 at Chashma are generating electricity with more than 90 per cent of capacity factor. These are the best performing power units among all power generating units of the country from all sources. These nuclear plants are supplying around 600 MW to the grid. Two larger capacity nuclear power plants K-2 and K-3 near Karachi are under construction and will be completed in 2020 and 2021 respectively. The sources said NPPs have been supplied and built by Chinese on Engineering, Procurement and Construction (EPC) basis and little was done indigenously. However, it is now being planned to undertake maximum possible construction work and manufacturing of equipment indigenously. The share of mechanical equipment in a 1100 MW plant is about Rs 200 billion out of which the objective is to manufacture about 10 per cent of the mechanical equipment and gradually' increase it to at least 30 per cent, which is considered doable. "As, there will be 3-4 NPPs under construction, the yearly work will at least amount to Rs 30-40 billion and this will help save foreign exchange, broaden the base for manufacturing of heavy equipment in the country and gain expertise," the sources continued.
cided to provide maximum relief to the underprivileged so it decided to maintain the prices of kerosene and LDO at the same level for the month of December 2016. Ministry of Petroleum & Natural Resources and Oil and Gas Regulatory Authority (OGRA) had recommended an increase in prices by 6.24% in MS 92 RON petrol, 7.47% in HSD and6.49% in kerosene oil with effect from December 1. The increase recommended by OGRA was Rs 4.01/litre in MS 92 RON petrol, Rs 5.42/litre for HSD and Rs 2.81/litre for kerosene oil. Federal Cabinet’s Economic Coordination Committee (ECC) had, in its meeting on August 18 decided to switch over from existing petrol 87 RON to minimum 92 RON with effect from November to ensure improved quality product for end-users. Petrol 92 RON is of much higher quality and the new OGRA proposed price reflect the increase in international price as well as premium for a higher quality product.
Finance minister directs strict action against forex smuggling ISLAMABAD STAFF REPORT
Finance Minister Ishaq Dar on Wednesday directed strict vigilance of all airports and other entry points to curb currency and bullion smuggling and also ordered strict actions against criminals involved in forex and bullion smuggling. The minister issued these directions while chairing a meeting which was attended among others by interior, finance secretaries, State Bank of Pakistan deputy governor, Federal Investigation Agency (FIA) director general, Federal Board of Revenue (FBR) chairman and Intelligence Bureau (IB) joint director. He brushed aside rumours about the demonisation of Rs 5000 currency notes, withdrawal of Rs 40,000 prize bonds and freezing of lockers, adding that the rumours are being spread by those having vested interest of harm the economy of the country. The minister directed all the agencies to take strict measures against criminal elements involved in the smuggling of gold and currency and take them to task as per the country’s law. He said that action would be taken against forex and bullion smuggling which is detrimental to the interest of the country and directed agencies to take action against those who were behind the illegal practice. He directed FIA, IB, custom intelligence and State bank of Pakistan to keep strict vigilance in this regard and said that all airports and other entry points should be kept under strict surveillance to curb this menace of currency and bullion smuggling.
seminar on promoting regional connectivity held at nust KARACHI: Bank Islami Pakistan and Master Card, a leading technology company in the global payments industry, have signed a strategic alliance to initiate ‘Bank Islami Master Card Program’. As part of the collaboration, Bank Islami's customers can look forward to enjoying the benefits of the titanium debit card, while using it for their local and international financial needs. Bank Islami’s titanium debit card will be powered by Mastercard’s chip-enabled technology to provide maximum security to cardholders, who will also benefit from the Biometric-enabled features of Bank Islami’s cardless ATMs. The agreement was signed byKhalid Elgibali, Division President for Middle East and North Africa, Mastercard and Hasan A. Bilgrami, CEO Bank Islami, in the presence of a number of senior Mastercard and BankIslami officials. Bank Islami CEO Hasan A. Bilgrami said: “We are excited about this partnership as we embark upon new initiatives to cater to our customers’ individual needs. PRESS RELEASE Further, we also look forward to working with Mastercard in developing new services with our existing Biometric capabilities.”
ISLAMABAD: The inaugural session of the two-day Joint International Seminar titled ‘Peace, Growth, and Empowerment: Promoting Regional Connectivity’ organised by the National University of Sciences and Technology (NUST) and the Royal Danish Defence College (RDDC) was held at NUST on Wednesday. In the opening address, NUST Rector Lt. General (R) Naweed Zaman acclaimed the efforts of NUST and RDDC in joining hands to organise the seminar. He said that the state of regional connectivity in South Asia was far from satisfactory as was evidenced by the extremely low intra-regional trade in South Asia which amounted to only 5 per cent of the total South Asian trade. In contrast, the intra-ASEAN trade was almost 25 per cent of the total ASEAN trade. He cited a number of reasons for poor connectivity in South Asia such as high levels of trust deficit between India and Pakistan mainly due to Indian intransigence and belligerence, poverty, terrorism, the unresolved Kashmir issue, long turmoil in Afghanistan, and the isolation of Iran. Rapid urbanisation in the region, he said, offered a big opportunity for fast-tracking regional connectivity through well-considered measures like reduction of tariff and non-tariff barriers, public-private partnerships, business-
to-business linkages. Speaking on the occasion, former chairman Joint Chiefs of Staff Committee General (R) Ehsan Ul Haq said, “China, Pakistan, India, Iran, Afghanistan, Central Asian Republics (CARs) and other South Asian States have a total population of approximately 3.5 billion which is more than 45 per cent of the total global population. This massive population bloc does not deserve to be held hostage to pursuit of negative politics of containment and encirclement.” PRESS RELEASE
Thursday, 1 December, 2016
Hafeez allowed resuming bowling in international cricket t
HE International Cricket Council (ICC) deemed Mohammad Hafeez's bowling action legal on Wednesday, paving the way for his return to international cricket, ICC reported. The off-spinner underwent a reassessment on Nov 17 at the National Cricket Centre in Brisbane which revealed that his elbow turned within the 15-degree level of tolerance allowed in ICC regulations for the review of bowlers reported with suspected illegal bowling actions. However, according to the article, um-
pires will still remain at liberty to report his action if they suspect it to be illegal. The umpires will be provided photos and videos of Hafeez's redeemed bowling action. Hafeez was banned from bowling in international cricket for 12 months in July 2015 after his action was found to be illegal for a second time since November 2014. The Pakistan Cricket Board had hired bowling coach Carl Crowe to
help Hafeez correct his bowling action before taking a bowling assessment test in England but he decided against taking any test because of his fitness issues. Hafeez was dropped from the Pakistan squad for a series against the West Indies as he was experiencing injury and form issues. He was also not considered for the two Test match series against New Zealand that ended yesterday.
Jennings, Dawson called up by England Gareth Bale undergoes
The uncapped Test pair of opening batsman Keaton Jennings and all-rounder Liam Dawson will join England for the remainder of their tour of India, selectors announced on Wednesday. South Africa-born Jennings — whose father, Ray, coached the South African national team — will replace
Haseeb Hameed, who has a broken left little finger and Dawson fills in for fellow left-arm spinner Zafar Ansari, who is struggling with a back problem, according to the England and Wales Cricket Board. Hameed is returning home for an operation on the back of plaudits for his courageous half century in the second innings of the Third Test in Mohali on
Tuesday which England lost to go 2-0 down in the five match series. Durham star Jennings — who averaged over 60 for Durham in the County Championship last season — is set to be captain Alastair Cook’s 11th opening partner since former skipper Andrew Strauss called it a day four years ago. Jennings, 24, should get an immediate run-out for England Lions against the United Arab Emirates on Thursday before heading to India for the fourth Test in Mumbai next week. Ansari is also due to return to England while 26year-old Dawson, who made his ODI and T20I cricket debut this summer, is expected to arrive in India next week from Bangladesh where he is playing in the Premier League for Rangpur Raiders.
ankle operation in London MADRID AGENCIES
Real Madrid superstar Gareth Bale underwent an operation on Tuesday in London on his injured ankle that will likely see him ruled out of action for two months. "Our player Gareth Bale has successfully come through the operation he underwent today after suffering an injury to the peroneal tendons in his right ankle," the Spanish giants said in a statement. "The operation was carried out at London s King Edward VII Hospital by Dr. James Calder and Real Madrid Sanitas Dr. Mikel Aramberri, under the supervision of Dr. Jesus Olmo, head of Real Madrid s medical department," it added. Bale was forced off just before the hour mark of Real s 2-1 win over Sporting Lisbon on November 22 as the European champions secured their place in the last 16 of the Champions League for a record 20th consecutive season. The Welshman was diagnosed with a "traumatic dislocation of the peroneal tendons in his right ankle". Spanish media reported at the time that he would be out for at least two months. It means Bale will miss the rest of 2016, the Club World Cup in Japan and probably the first leg of the Champions League last 16 tie.
Five tragic air disasters that left the football world stunned MONTEVIDEO AGENCIES
The crash in Colombia of a plane carrying the Brazilian football club Chapecoense Real, killing 76 people, was among the deadliest air disasters in the sport’s history. Rescue operations at the site of a plane crash in central Colombia were suspended in the early hours of Tuesday morning amid heavy rain. Here we look at five other air disasters in football history. May 4, 1949: Eighteen players of the Torino football club, the best in the world at the time, are killed along with 13 other people when their plane crashes in the Basilica of Superga, near
Turin, in the first such tragedy to strike the world of football. February 6, 1958: A plane crash at the Munich airport kills 23 people, including eight Manchester United players, their coach and two team directors.
Ben Woodburn makes history as Liverpool move into League Cup semis LONDON AGENCIES
Liverpool starlet Ben Woodburn made history as the teenage striker became the club’s youngest ever goalscorer in Tuesday’s 2-0 win over Leeds in the League Cup quarter-finals. Aged 17 years and 45 days, Woodburn enjoyed a moment to remember forever in the 81st minute at Anfield when he fired home in front of the famous Kop End to eclipse the previous record set by Michael Owen, who was 17 years and 143 days old when he scored against Wimbledon in May 1997. Woodburn only made his senior debut for Liverpool on Saturday as a late substitute in a Premier League win over Sunderland — an appearance that made him the club’s third youngest ever first-team player. Cheshireborn Woodburn, who recently signed a long-term contract with Liverpool, is a Wales Under-19 international, but he still remains eligible to play for England at senior level. While it’s far too early to say a star was born on Tuesday, Woodburn’s impressive pedigree at youth level and his fairytale first goal for the Reds suggest he is one to watch. “Ben, we know how young he is. It’s a nice story and all the boys are really happy for him,” said Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp. “Everyone is smiling in the dressing room. It’s a good moment for him and a good moment for us.” Klopp’s side are through to the League Cup semi-finals for the third successive year thanks to Woodburn and Divock Origi. Klopp has now won seven of his nine League Cup games with Liverpool, who hope to lift the trophy for the ninth time after losing to Manchester City in the final last term. Before kick-off, Liverpool’s Brazilian captain Lucas and his teammates, all wearing black armbands, stood for a minutes’ silence following the plane crash that killed 71 people, including members of the Brazilian Chapecoense team. With Philippe Coutinho sidelined for five weeks with ankle ligament damage, Klopp gave starts to teenagers Trent Alexander-Arnold and Ovie Ejaria as the Reds boss selected a team featuring eight changes. Second tier Leeds, whose last League Cup semi-final appearance was in 1996, should have been ahead early on when Hadi Sacko broke the offside trap and saw his shot saved by Simon Mignolet. Liverpool gradually took charge and Sadio Mane’s pass slipped Georginio Wijnaldum into the penalty area, but the Dutchman’s shot struck the far post. Then, in the 76th minute, Alexander-Arnold whipped in a cross from the right and Belgian striker Origi stretched to guide the ball home at the near post for his fourth goal of the season and third in the League Cup. Woodburn came on in the 67th minute and his dream came to true when he smashed into the net following a flowing move involving Origi, Mane and Wijnaldum. “He is a brilliant young player. He did very well. A goal will give him confidence to keep learning,” Lucas added of Woodburn. In the day’s other quarter-final, Premier League strugglers Hull beat second tier Newcastle 3-1 on penalties after a 1-1 draw to reach the last four for the first time. Both sides made a host of changes and a drab game didn’t come to life until the 89th minute when Hull’s Dieumerci Mbokani was sent off after lunging forward with his head at Jamaal Lascelles. Newcastle took the lead eight minutes into extra-time when former Hull midfielder Mohamed Diame stabbed in, but Robert Snodgrass equalised 60 seconds later.
PAKISTAN TO HOST FIRST DAVIS CUP MATCH IN 12 YEARS SPORTS DESK Pakistan said Wednesday it has received the green light to host its first Davis Cup tennis tie at home for 12 years, after being forced to play at neutral venues due to security fears. International sporting events have been rarely held in the country which has fought a militant insurgency for years, with foreign teams citing security fears ever since the 9/11 attacks on the United States. A 2009 militant attack on the Sri Lankan cricket team bus in Lahore effectively sealed Pakistan’s fate, with no international cricket fixtures played in the country for a further six years until Zimbabwe visited in 2015 for a low-profile
tour that failed to create abreakthrough. Instead, Pakistan has been playing all major sports at neutral venues, with cricket inUnited Arab Emirates and tennis in their opponent’s countries. But on Wednesday Pakistan Tennis Federation secretary Khalid Rehmani said the International Tennis Federation (ITF) has given them the go-ahead to host a Davis Cup tie against Iran in Islamabad in February next year. "We welcome the decision which will help tennis in the country," said Rehmani. Pakistan last hosted a Davis Cup tie in Islamabad against New Zealand in 2004, and were forced to play its Group I playoff tie in Christchurch, New Zealand which they lost 5-0 in September this year.
Rehmani hoped security will not be an issue. "Security has improved," he said, adding that the PTF has arranged the same level of security as would be given to a visiting foreign president. "Pakistan has recently hosted three international squash events in Islamabad so the situation is conducive now," he said. The Group II tie with Iran will be played from 3-5 February. The Pakistan Cricket Board has announced it will host the final of their Twenty20 league, the Pakistan Super League, in Lahore in March next year. The inaugural season of the league this year was hosted in the UAE.
Thursday, 1 December, 2016
misbaHul Haq ready to face ‘inexperienced’ australia India v England: Captain Alastair Cook says tourists need a break after Mohali defeat COURTESY ESPN England's players need a break after the third Test defeat by India, according to captain Alastair Cook. The loss in Mohali, which gave India a 2-0 lead in the five-match series, was England's fifth Test in six weeks. With the next Test in Mumbai not beginning until 8 December, a number of the England squad will leave India for a holiday in Dubai. "We will get away, see some different scenery and come back for the last two Tests," Cook told BBC Sport. England's two-Test series in Bangladesh, which was drawn 1-1, began on 20 October. They then travelled straight to India where, after a draw in the first Test, Cook's men have suffered two heavy defeats. "I think most people would agree that five back-to-back Tests in six weeks is a heavy schedule," added opener Cook, who has spent just 18 hours with his daughter since she was born midway through the tour of Bangladesh. "I genuinely believe if we put a better standard of performance in we can put India under pressure, we just haven't done it yet." By the end of their tour to India, England will have played seven Tests in two months and 17 in total in a 2016 that also included a run to the final of the World Twenty20 in March and April. Their congested schedule is part of a modern trend that sees tours packed with international matches, while also including fewer rest days or warm-up games. England coach Trevor Bayliss said: "It's been a long tour. "The break will give the guys time to get away, refresh mentally and physically and come back ready and raring to go. "These tours are what you've got to put up with these days. A lot of the teams are going through the same thing and a lot of the players and staff are saying the same thing - it's becoming too much." Analysis Former England captain Michael Vaughan on Test Match Special: Mentally it's going to be a challenge. When you're 2-0 down and you can only draw, it's always a challenge. The one thing in their advantage - the one thing they can grab at - is they're playing the fourth Test in Mumbai. The last two times they've been there, England have won the Test
AKISTAN Test captain Misbahul Haq on Wednesday said that the current Australia team is just a shadow of its past and they will be looking to exploit their inexperience. The 42-year-old was talking to media in Lahore when he said: “We will take the tour of Australia as a challenge. The current Australian team is not the same as it was in the past. We will try take to exploit their inexperience.” Misbah, who was unable to lead Pakistan in the second Test against New Zealand which stand-in captain Azhar Ali’s side lost by 138 runs, said Australia will be a relatively better
place for his side to play in. “It is not impossible to stand up after defeats,” said Misbah. “First goal in Australia will be to regain confidence. Also, Australian conditions are relatively easier to the ones in New Zealand.” The most successful Test captain for Pakistan once again did not give a specific date or time for his retirement. “There is no such plan that if the Australia tour goes well then I will continue, otherwise not,” said Misbah. “I will be there for the team until it needs me.” Pakistan will be facing Australia from December 15 in first a day-night and then two regular Test matches. The five-day affairs will be followed by five ODIs.
Bangladesh launches probe after matchfixing allegations resurface in BPL DHAKA AGENCIES
A probe has been launched into allegations by a player that he was asked to fix matches during the latest scandal-hit Bangladesh Premier League Twenty20 tournament. The Bangladesh Cricket Board (BCB) said it would investigate after Rangpur Riders player Jupiter Ghosh alleged on Monday that team manager Sanuar Hossain had told him to fix match results just before the start of the tournament earlier this month. He claims that he was dropped from the team when he refused to comply. "The BCB is investigating complaints lodged by a cricketer of BPL 2016 franchise Rangpur Riders against an official of the same team," the BCB said. "The BCB recognises that the allegations and counter alle-
gations brought forward by the player and the official concerned, which includes breach of discipline and corrupt practice, are of serious nature." The Rangpur Riders expelled Ghosh on disciplinary grounds on Monday after he went public with the
allegations. The BCB has also suspended Ghosh and Hossain from the tournament while the investigation is conducted. The BPL, modelled on the glitzy and lucrative Indian Premier League (IPL), has been blighted by fixing rows ever since it began in 2012. The tournament was sus-
pended for a season in 2014 following revelations that former Bangladesh captain Mohammad Ashraful and four others including New Zealand's Lou Vincent were involved in fixing matches. Ashraful was banned for eight years after he tearfully confessed on national television, but was allowed to return to domestic cricket earlier this year. The BCB's anti-corruption officials have also thrown out at least four suspected bookmakers during the previous editions in an effort to ensure the tournament is corruption-free. Seven franchises are playing in the current edition with several big names in international cricket, including Pakistan's Shahid Afridi, West Indies' Chris Gayle and Sri Lanka's Kumar Sangakkara taking part. Afridi is leading the beleaguered Rangpur Riders, who currently lie fifth in the points table.
Basketball team pays goodwill visit to Malaysia LAHORE STAFF REPORT
A goodwill tour of Pakistan Basketball Team (Koinonia Love Pakistan) was arranged in Malaysia under the auspices of Pakistan Basketball Federation, Pakistan Bible Society and Peace Ambassadors Society. Three basketball matches were arranged by Pakistan Basketball Federation in Kuala Lampur and Langkawi. The series got equal 1-1, as the third match was
cancelled due to heavy rain. Colonel (r) Nasim Butt, Chief Demission Adeel Manzar, Deputy Chief Demission Ajmal Tahir Alban, Team Manager and Coach Irfan Francis, Tour and Team Manager and Treasurer Imtiaz ul Hassan, Referee and Coach Pervaiz Younis Coach Akbar Butt were in the organising and tour committee. During the tour, FIBA Asia invited Pakistan Basketball Team (Koinonia Love) in FIBA Asia office where Lt. Col. (r) Lee Kak
Kuan, Technical Director FIBA Asia welcomed the team and provided information about FIBA Asia to young basketball players. Team visited the Basketball Stadium and also visited the office of Dato Yeoh Choo Hock. Souvenir were present to team by FIBA. Captain Asher Gill, Saryan Ajmal Alban (Vice Captain) Romeo Raza, Iraj Gill, Aroon David, Shane Saleem, Nadub Akram, Samran Gill, Suleman Yashab, and Shahzeb Pervaiz.
Woakes suﬀers 'tiny crack' to thumb COURTESY ESPN Chris Woakes has been diagnosed with a small crack in his right thumb sustained while batting in the third Test in Mohali. Woakes, the England allrounder, was struck on the helmet by a welldirected bouncer from Mohammed Shami and, next ball, was stuck on the thumb as he tried to fend off another fine short ball. To add insult to injury, the ball lobbed to Parthiv Patel behind the wicket to end Woakes' innings. Woakes went for an X-ray after the game which showed what the England management are describing as a "tiny crack." Despite this, and some on-going trouble with a sore knee, England are hopeful Woakes will be fit for the fourth Test in Mumbai. That Test does not start until December 8 and the England squad has been given a few days off before resuming training with most heading to Dubai. England are expected to announce a replacement for Haseeb Hameed, who is returning to England for an operation on his hand, on Wednesday afternoon (IST).
Sacked Real Betis coach Gus Poyet lands Shanghai Shenhua job
WASIM AKRAM TO TRAIN SRI LANKA PACERS SRI LANKA AGENCIES
won the World Cup in 1996 but choked twice in the finals of the
2007 and 2011 editions. The latest coaching session comes
Sri Lanka on Wednesday said it has roped in legendary Pakistan paceman Wasim Akram as a mentor ahead of the team's gruelling tour of South Africa next month. Akram, 50, will conduct a daylong coaching clinic in Colombo on Thursday, Sri Lanka Cricket said, in what would be the first of a series of programmes involving foreign experts. "We are honoured that Mr. Akram has accepted our invitation to be a part of this initiative," Sri Lanka Cricket chief Thilanga Sumathipala said. Sumathipala also said the 2019 World Cup could be within the grasp of Sri Lanka if the team is given the right guidance. Sri Lanka
as the victorious team returned home Tuesday after beating Zimbabwe in a two-Test series in Harare and lifting a triangular tournament that also involved the West Indies. Regarded as one of the best leftarm pacemen ever to grace the game, Akram took 414 Test wickets and 502 in 356 one-day internationals ─ both still a Pakistan record. Sri Lanka are set to tour South Africa for three Tests, three T20 matches and five ODIs starting December 26, with national coach Graham Ford warning of a tough challenge against the formidable Proteas. Sri Lanka, who also won a threeTest home series against Australia in August, are ranked seventh in Test ratings behind South Africa on fifth.
COURTESY TRIBAL FOOTBALL Ex-Sunderland boss Poyet has packed his bags for China to lead Shanghai Shenhua just 17 days after leaving the Andalusian capital. The Chinese team chose not to continue with Gregorio Manzano, despite having qualified the team for the Asian Champions League.
SPORTS Thursday, 1 December, 2016
Women’s T20 AsiA Cup: sAnA mir-inspired pAkisTAn deCimATe BAnglAdesh
AKISTAN women’s cricket team added another victory to their tally on Wednesday when they beat Bangladesh women’s team by nine wickets in the on-going Asian Cricket Council Women’s Twenty20 Asia Cup in Asian Institute of Technology Ground, Bangkok. Bangladesh, after opting to bat first, could only manage 44 runs in 15.3 courtesy Mir’s three-for. Only two Bangladesh players — captain Rumana Ahmed (11) and Jahanara Alam (12) — were able to enter double figures. Aiman Anwar, meanwhile, bagged two wickets while Aliya Riaz, Anam Amin, Javeria Khan and Nida Dar were able to bag one scalp each. In their chase, Pakistan lost their opener Ayesha Zafar cheaply for two runs off four balls but Javeria and Iram Javed then led the team past the finish line with 61 balls to spare. Earlier, Pakistan beat Nepal and Sri Lanka in its initial two matches; however, Bismah Maroof and her team faced defeat against India on Tuesday. If India, who are unbeaten until now in the
tournament, can carry on without a defeat in the next two matches and Pakistan beat Thailand on
December 3, then both arch-rivals will be set to appear in the final.
Mickey Arthur thinks Babar Azam is as good as Virat Kohli SPORTS DESk Pakistan head coach Mickey Arthur believes Pakistan’s young right-hand batsman Babar Azam is as good as Indian Test captain Virat Kohli. Azam recently scored an unbeaten 90 in the second Test against
Bangladesh players fined for entertaining female guests in hotel rooms: reports
New Zealand in difficult batting conditions and Arthur says he deserves the high praise. “He’s a young gun who will be an exceptional player,” said Arthur. “I’ll go so far as to say, at the same age, I reckon, he’s as good as Virat Kohli, which I know that’s high
praise but he’s right up there.” Azam, who averages 46.40 after three Tests, is way ahead of Kohli who had an average of 15.2 after the same number of matches. However, a better comparison of both batsmen could be done using their ODI statistics. Babar, who has
represented Pakistan in 18 ODIs, has three centuries, five fifties and an average of 52.11 to his name. Meanwhile, Kohli, after the same number of matches, had only one ton and an average of 50 to his name. ‘No training caused havoc against NZ’ Pakistan were beaten 2-0 in the recently concluded series against New Zealand, first series loss after 31 years, but Arthur thinks the buildup to the series was not good. “I think we’ve become better and better as the series has gone on,” Arthur said on Perth’s 6PR radio station. “We arrived straight from Dubai to five days of rain in Nelson so we didn’t get any training or a practice game, which was completely rained out. And there was an earthquake as well.” He added: “We almost went into the first Test match pretty cold, played OK there and we’ve played a lot better in this [second] Test match. Had this series gone another Test match we would have been better for the conditions. Hopefully, this has put us in good stead for what we can experience in Australia.”
The Bangladesh Cricket Board has levied a record fine on two national team players for what it called “serious” breaches of discipline after they reportedly entertained female guests in their hotel rooms. Pace bowler Al-Amin Hossain and batsman Sabbir Rahman were both fined around $15,000 for “serious off-field disciplinary breaches” during the ongoing Bangladesh Premier League (BPL) Twenty20 tournament, said the BCB in a statement late Tuesday. It gave no details of the charges against the players, but the Prothom Alo daily reported online that they had taken female guests to their hotel rooms during the tour. “The players have been reminded of their responsibility as national cricketers and have been warned that any repetition of similar acts of indiscretion in the future will result in harsher penalty,” the BCB said. The BPL is modelled on the glitzy Indian Cricket League and has been blighted by match-fixing scandals, prompting authorities to suspend the meet for two years. Seven franchises are playing in the current edition, which includes such major names as Pakistan's Shahid Afridi, West Indies' Chris Gayle and Sri Lanka's Kumar Sangakkara. The fines are the highest ever imposed on a Bangladeshi player on disciplinary grounds. Al-Amin's amounts to 50 per cent of his BPL contract money for playing for the Barisal Bulls while Sabbir's is equal to 30 percent of his pay from the Rajshahi Kings. The BCB also fined Sabbir and Afghan cricketer Mohammad Shahzad 15 percent of their match fees over an on-field bust-up Shahzad, who was also banned for two matches, nudged Sabbir with the bat when the Bangladeshi player celebrated his dismissal during a match on Monday.
Injured Hameed returns home for hand surgery MOhaLI Agencies
England batsman Haseeb Hameed’s India tour ended on Tuesday with skipper Alastair Cook confirming he will return home to have surgery on his injured hand. Hameed — who made his debut in the first Test in Rajkot — was hit on his left hand by a rising delivery from Indian seamer Umesh Yadav in the first innings at Mohali. But the teenager played through the third Test with a broken hand — though his valiant effort of 59 not out in England’s second essay could not save the Test for the visitors, who now trail 2-0 in the five-match series. “He has got a broken hand, needs a plate within it to fix it. He’s out for the whole tour, he is going home. A replacement would be called,” Cook told reporters after the team’s eight-wicket loss. Hameed came to bat at number eight on the fourth day and put in a strong performance during his 156-ball stay.
New ZeAlANd’s TreNT BoulT seT To reTurN AgAINsT AusTrAlIA SYDNEY Agencies
Trent Boult is expected to be fit for New Zealand’s opening ODI against Australia in Sydney on Sunday after the strike bowler missed the second Test win over Pakistan due to knee discomfort. Boult sustained a knee injury on New Zealand’s tour of India and he felt some discomfort when he slipped during the first Test against Pakistan in Christchurch earlier this month. He was ruled out of the second match in Hamilton, which New Zealand won by 138 runs to clinch their first series win over Pakistan since 1985. Coach Mike Hesson said Boult was tracking “very well” for Sunday’s opener in the Chappell-Hadlee series having passed a fitness test. “He’s recovered. I think when you know you’ve only got to bowl 10 overs, it’s a lot easier than obviously the demands of the Test match,” he said. Boult’s return would be a boost for Hesson’s side as they make the quick
transition from Test matches to one-day cricket, though captain Kane Williamson said the confidence from their victory over Pakistan would help. “One thing I do know is winning’s a lot better than losing, so I guess it’s nice coming away with a series win, having played very good cricket as a unit,” said Williamson. “In saying that, the change in format, also the change in side, means that it is a separate challenge. It is important you bring yourself back to the challenges that are in front of you.” Hesson added that New Zealand could also take confidence from their consistent performances in the shorter versions of the game over the last two to three years. “We’re a reliable white-ball side,” he said. “A lot of these guys have never played in Australia. There’ll be some good crowds, I’m sure, over there, plenty of hostility, and for any New Zealand team going over there it’s an exciting time, so we’re looking forward to it.” The first match is at the Sydney Cricket
Ground on Sunday before the two sides clash in Canberra on December 6 and finish the series in Melbourne on December 9. Australia’s Pat Cummins to make comeback in ODIs Pat Cummins’ international career has had more than its fair share of false starts due to injuries but captain Steve Smith hopes the upcoming one-day series against New Zealand will prove a launchpad for the Australia fast-bowler to kick on. The right armer, who made a dream Test debut against South Africa as a raw 18-year-old in 2011 with match figures of seven for 117, was recalled to the Australian side for the first time in more than a year for the three-match ChappellHadlee series. The 23-year-old missed all of last season after yet another stress fracture in his lower back but returned with a vengeance in Australia’s domestic oneday competition last month, taking 15 wickets at 18.60. Chairman of selectors Trevor Hohns
said when the one-day squad was named last week that he was particularly pleased to see him back bowling with real pace. With Australia choosing not to rest Test spearheads Mitchell Starc and Josh Hazlewood, Smith had three genuinely
Published by Arif Nizami at Qandeel Printing Press, 4 Queens Road, Lahore.
quick bowlers at his disposal for the series against New Zealand. “It looked like he bowled with some good pace so it’s nice to have the option of Starc, Hazlewood and Cummins at our disposal,” said Steve Smith. “It’s very exciting.”