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Imran Khan wants open border with Afghanistan
Shahbaz Bhatti’s alleged killer remanded for 7 days
Rs15.00 Vol ii no 229 22Pages islamabad — Peshawar edition
Law is for the poor, rich don’t even bother: CJP
Valentines Day celebrated
Wednesday, 15 february, 2012 Rabi-ul-awal 22, 1433
Where there’s a bill, there’s a way! Consensus between PPP, PML-N allows unanimous passing of the 20th Constitutional Amendment Bill, which will establish a framework for consensus caretaker setup and provide legal cover to disqualified lawmakers
ISLAMABAD MASOOD RehMAN
Chief Justice of Pakistan Iftikhar Muhammad Chaudhry on Tuesday said it had become a culture that law was enforced on the poor only and no one dared question the influential. He said democracy and good governance meant being answerable to the people. The CJP said this while heading a three-member Supreme Court bench including Justice Khilji Arif Hussain and Justice Tariq Parvez, which was hearing a case involving corruption and irregularities in the Pakistan Railways. Justice Hussain observed that the Supreme Court would not have interfered in the administrative affairs had parliament fulfilled its obligations. Justice Parvez said ‘corruption’ was now considered a right. The court expressed dismay over the Railways chairman’s absence, and directed him to ensure his personal appearance on the next hearing. The court directed the Defence and Interior secretaries to submit detailed reports over the Railways land under the possession of security forces. The court directed Railways Board Secretary Shafiqullah, who was present in the court, to submit a comprehensive report on the strategy made or being made to retrieve the land from the illegal possession. The chief secretaries of all provinces had been directed to cooperate with the Pakistan Railways in getting occupied land back. Earlier, the Pakistan Railways and the National Accountability Bureau (NAB) submitted a report, in compliance with the court’s order over the occupied land so far retrieved as well as corruption. Continued on Page 04
ISLAMABAD: Prime Minister Yousaf Raza Gilani and Leader of the Opposition Chaudhry Nisar Ali Khan walk together towards the section allocated for MPs in favour of passing the 20th Amendment Bill in the National Assembly.
ECP gives right of vote to overseas Pakistanis ISLAMABAD STAFF RePORT
The Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) has, in principle, decided to allow 3.7 million overseas Pakistanis to exercise the right of vote in the next general elections. The decision was taken in a meeting held here at ECP Secretariat with Secretary Ishtiak Ahmed Khan in the chair. The meeting decided that all Pakistanis who possessed National Identity Card for Overseas Pakistanis (NICOP) would
be registered in the electoral rolls and would be allowed to exercise the right of vote. The secretary asked the participants to give serious consideration to how overseas Pakistanis could be properly involved in the political process of Pakistan. After much deliberation, the NICOP idea was agreed upon in principle. Various other possibilities were also considered and discussed, such as postal ballots, but were pushed aside because they required lengthy legislation. The minutes of this consultative meeting will
be put before the ECP and further deliberation will be made to reach a fair and integrated solution. The ECP meeting was attended by the representatives of the Law Ministry, Finance Ministry and the Overseas Pakistan Foundation. Separately, President Asif Ali Zardari and Prime Minister Yousaf Raza Gilani congratulated the 3.7 million overseas Pakistanis for getting the right to vote in the national elections. The prime minister said he had been advocating for their cause on all forums.
ISLAMABAD MIAN ABRAR/IRFAN BuKhARI
N a landmark legislation to ensure free, fair and transparent elections in the country, the National Assembly on Tuesday unanimously passed the 20th Constitutional Amendment Bill, making mandatory the appointment of a caretaker setup with consensus between the prime minister and the National Assembly opposition leader. The amendment also lays out the procedure and mechanism to appoint the caretaker setup in case the prime minister and the opposition leader fail to reach consensus within three days. In that case, the National Assembly speaker would appoint an eightmember committee with four members each from the government and the opposition to reach an agreement within three days. However, if the deadlock still persists, the matter would be referred to the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) to resolve and forward its recommendations to the president to install a caretaker government to hold elections in the country. These recommendations would be binding on the president. This move has kept the judiciary out of the electoral process. The amendment also provided a one-time legal protection to 28 members of parliament and the provincial assemblies whose membership was suspended for being elected during a time when the ECP was incomplete under the terms of the 18th Constitutional Amendment. Differences between the government and the opposition had delayed the tabling of the amendment. After the two sides reached an agreement, the bill was finally tabled in the Lower House on Tuesday after the federal cabinet approved it earlier in the day. After a brief debate in the National Assembly, the House unanimously passed the bill. However, Continued on Page 04
text of the bill | Page 04
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wednesday, 15 February 2012
Valentines day celebrated
Arrested uS diplomat returned to consulate
Story on Page 08
Story on Page 05
Fahim under fire in cabinet for ‘haste’ on MFN lists PM defers decision on negative lists after Interior, Textile ministries criticism g
HE federal cabinet decided to defer the matter after the commerce ministry’s move to seek approval of items of trade to India from the ‘negative’ list to the ‘positive’ list came under severe criticism from the interior and textile ministers for showing ‘unnecessary haste.’ In light of the criticism, Prime Minister (PM) Yousuf Raza Gilani directed the commerce minister to all stakeholders onboard before taking the decision. Moreover, the bill proposing amendments in Pakistan Institute of Fashion Design Act 2011 was also deferred with attorney general of Pakistan and secretary finance asked to reassess the proposed amendments in and table their recommendations. Sources told Pakistan Today that during the special cabinet meeting held to approve the 20th Constitutional Amendment Bill, commerce minister Makhdoom Amin Fahim came under fire from cabinet colleagues for not taking them on board on the decision to turn the items on the negative list to positive list to normalise bilateral trade with India. “Fahim failed to convince the PM why his ministry had not sent related papers to all ministries concerned. Moreover, since the mandatory 15-day timeframe had not been fulfilled, the PM decided to defer the matter,” the sources said. Sources said Fahim had said that his ministry wanted to complete the deal as his
Indian counterpart, Anand Sharma, had arrived in Pakistan and the ministry wanted to finalise the matter in the dialogue to be held on February 16. The Information Minister confirmed during a press briefing that the matter of the negative items’ list had been deferred on the PM’s direction. “Yes, agenda number seven was deferred after reservations were shown by the interior and textile ministers for not being taken onboard by commerce ministry. The PM expressed concern over why the ministry did not follow laid down procedure of completing the 15-day deadline,” she said. However, she said the cabinet approved three memorandums of understanding (MoUs) with India for for extending cooperation and mutual assistance in customs matters; bilateral cooperation agreement on mutual recognition between PSQCA and BIS systems and agreement on redressal of trade grievances between Pakistan and India. The cabinet also approved confirmation of decisions of the economic coordination committee (ECC) held on 31st January while the signing and ratification of statute of the organisation of the Islamic Countries (0IC) women development organisation and amendments in rules of acceding states order 1972 presidential order were also approved, she added. She said the bill proposing amendments in Pakistan Institute of Fashion Design Act 2011 were deferred and attorney general of Pakistan and secretary finance were asked to reassess the proposed amendments in the bill and table their recommendations. She said the cabinet members opposed the bill claiming that it cannot allow one university’s administration alone to form a financial reporting system aimed at improving governance. She said that the cabinet unanimously applauded the PM’s conduct in the Supreme Court and reposed full confidence in his leadership. She said the media trial of the elected PM was unfortunate and Gilani had taken a legal and and constitutional position in the SC. She said the PM had directed the information technology ministry to gear up efforts for launching the 3-G licenses auction. She further said that the cabinet also approved the ECC decision to export 100,000 tonnes of sugar and each sugar mill would be allowed to export 5000 tonnes each.
KARAChI: A female supporter of a religious party sets fire to a Valentine Card during a protest outside the press club on Tuesday. onlinE
Abbottabad Commission briefed on houses in capital rented to foreigners ISLAMABAD SALMAN ABBAS
On suspicion of presence of family members of former al Qaeda chief Osama Bin Laden in Islamabad, the Abbottabad Commission was on Tuesday given a detailed presentation by the capital city’s top officials on renting of houses in the federal capital by foreign nationals. A source privy to the development told Pakistan Today that the commission held a meeting with the CDA Chairman Engineer Farkhand Iqbal and the Islamabad inspector general of police (IGP) and sought a report from both officials.
The commission was given a representation in this regard. The source added that the commission had linked the hiring of houses by foreign nationals in Islamabad to Osama due to concerns that some family members of Osama Bin Laden might have taken refuge in the capital city. Reportedly, the elder son of bin Laden, Hamza, had managed to escape from the Abbottabad compound where the US Special Forces killed Osama on May 2, 2011. When contacted, CDA Chairman Farkhand Iqbal said he had apprised the commission about the policy of renting out private property. He said after the issuance of a completion certificate of any house, it was
the owner of the house that decided who to rent the property and the CDA had nothing to do with the hiring of private property by foreigners. Iqbal said the local administration and Foreign Office were responsible to deal with the cases in which foreigners had hired the houses, adding that according to the rules, foreign nationals had to get permission from the Foreign Office and local police prior to renting out any premises. It was learnt that the IGP had also apprised the commission that police and local administration also conducted a survey to get details of houses been rented out to foreign nationals in the federal capital.
Imran wants open border with Afghanistan Islamabad: Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaaf (PTI) Chairman Imran Khan said on Tuesday that it was his dream to see an open border between Pakistan and Afghanistan. He was talking to Afghan Ambassador to Pakistan Umer Daudzai, who called on him at his residence. Imran said that in the past Pakistani regimes backed different Afghan groups instead of simply supporting what was good for the Afghans. The PTI chairman hoped that the future would tie up both countries in exemplary ties. Daudzai told Imran that how different agreements were imposed on the Afghans throughout history since the Soviet invasion, including the arrival of US and NATO forces. He said that Afghanistan was not even represented in the resolutions presented in the UNSC about the country. The ambassador said that his country was investing very huge resources in human development, including higher education. Daudzai explained that the forthcoming visit of President Hamid Karzai was different from past visits. Afghanistan wanted to establish a relationship with Pakistan, which was free from any other power, as they did with Iran. ONLINe
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ArTS & enTerTAInMenT
Sarkozy to throw hat in election ring
Mathira goes topless, knocks down Veena Malik Ponting to lead Australia in Clarke’s absence
News 03 coMMenT Too little: We spend too much on the boys for the toys.
Tip of the iceberg:
Dr hasan Askari Rizvi says: A new foreign policy?: Pakistan explores its options.
Ali Aftab Saeed says: The Karachi Literature Festival: The gathering of the intellectuals.
harris bin Munawar says: Ahmadis, leprosy and plague: Banning a drink
Story on Page 14
Story on Page 17
PML-Q forward bloc attaches strings to Senate support
EPRIVED of Senate tickets, Pakistan Muslim League-Quaid (PML-Q)’s forward bloc, also known as the Unification Bloc, has asked for more than 30 tickets for general elections from the Sharifs as a fair deal to lend support to the PML-Nawaz Senate candidates to sew up success on March 2. A delegation of Unification Bloc members met PML-N President Nawaz Sharif at his residence in Raiwind on Tuesday and voluntarily withdrew their demand to secure at least one Senate ticket, but tabled a proposal for the general elections. However, some of the bloc members came down hard on the PML-N for deliberately keeping them out of the Senate consultation process and hinted at defecting to the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaaf (PTI) during the meeting. The meeting aimed to take a fresh oath of loyalty and weigh up bilateral relations amid brewing differences between the bloc and the PML-N. Sources privy to the developments told Pakistan Today that the meeting between Nawaz Sharif and the Unification Bloc, also attended by Punjab Chief Minister Shahbaz Sharif, was arranged by a common friend to
help them reach consensus on Senate elections and other issues, including tickets for the general elections. Unofficial sources claimed more than 40 members of bloc held talks with the Sharifs but other reports said the number of attendees was not more than 15. Insiders said the Unification Bloc also demanded a share of the Punjab development funds in their constituencies as encouragement for their voters ahead of the elections. It also asked for an even quota in public sector appointments promised to bloc members, said the insiders. Sources said the PML-N chief told the bloc members that their valid demands would be entertained but made no commitments regarding tickets for general elections. However, he hinted that bloc members would be rewarded for their “selfless sacrifice”, sources said. Nawaz also said the government did nothing for the common man during the last four years and remained hell bent on serving its own ulterior motives. He said the government spread disappointment, sorrow, inflation and load shedding during its corruption-ridden rule. PML-N Central Information Secretary Mushahid Ullah Khan told Pakistan Today that the meeting’s agenda was Senate tickets, but as far as election tickets were concerned, the PML-N would do justice by awarding tickets for general elections soon.
Story on Page 20
Articles on Page 12-13
Ji starts countrywide campaign LARKANA ONLINe
The Jamaat-e-Islami (JI) on Tuesday started a countrywide campaign demanding an interim government to play a role for the new election process. A rally led by JI chief Munawar Hasan, Secretary General Liaqat Baloch, Sindh chief Asadullah Bhutto and others slammed the PPP-MQM-led government for corruption, inflation, poverty, lawlessness, US interference, Indian aggression in IHK, terrorism and anti-Sindh policies. Addressing a rally at Jinnah Bagh Chowk, Munawar said that a revolution was knocking at the door for changing the system and the masses wanted an Islamic revolution. He criticised policies of the PPP-led government declaring India as a favourite country, adding that India was an enemy of Pakistan and Sindhis and wanted to destabilise the country. He accused India of distributing money and suicide bombs in Balochistan for an uprising.
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Text of 20th Amendment bill Where there’s a bill It is hereby enacted as follows:1. Short title and commencement.- (1) This Act may be called the Constitution (Twentieth Amendment) Act, 2012. (2) It shall come into force at once. Amendment of Article 214 of the Constitution.- In the Constitution of the Islamic Republic of Pakistan, hereinafter referred to as the Constitution, in Article 214,(a) in the marginal note, the word “Commissioner’s” shall be’ omitted; and ‘■/■ ‘ (b) after the word “Pakistan”, the commas and words “, and a member of the Election Commission shall make before the Commissioner,” shall be inserted. Amendment of Article 215 of the Constitution.- In the Constitution, in Article 215,in the marginal note, after the word “Commissioner”, the words “and members” shall be added; in clause (1),-(i) after the word “Commissioner”, the words “and a member” shall be inserted; and (ii) in the proviso, after the word “incumbent”, the word “Commissioner” shall be added; (c) in clause (2),~(i) after the word “Commissioner”, occurring for the first time, the words “or a member” shall be inserted; and (ii) after the word “Commissioner”, at the end, the words and commas “or, as the case may be, a member” shall be added; and (d) in clause (3), after the word “Commissioner”, the words “or a member” shall be inserted. 4L Amendment of Article 216 of the Constitution.- In the Constitution, in Article 216,(a) in the marginal note, after the word “Commissioner”, the words “and members” shall be inserted; in clause (1), after the word “Commissioner”, the words “or a member” shall be inserted; and in clause (2), after the word “Commissioner”, occurring for the first time, the words “or a member” shall be inserted. m Amendment of Article 218 of the Constitution.- In the Constitution, in Article 218, in clause (3), the words “constituted in relation to an election” shall be omitted. Amendment of Article 219 of the Constitution.- In the Constitution, in Article 219, in paragraph (e), for the full stop, at the end, a comma shall be ‘ substituted and thereafter the following proviso shall be inserted, namely :O) \ “Provided that till such time as the members of the Commission are first appointed in accordance with the provisions of paragraph (b) of clause (2) of Article 218 pursuant to the Constitution (Eighteenth Amendment) Act, 2010, and enter upon their office, the Commissioner shall remain charged with the duties enumerated in paragraphs (a), (b) and (c) of this Article.”. W$ Amendment of Article 224 of the Constitution.- In the Constitution, in Article 224, (a) in clause (1 A), “ (i) in the first proviso, for the
wore! “selected” the word”appointed” shall be substituted; (ii) after the proviso, as amended hereinabove, the following new proviso shall be inserted, namely:“Provided further that if the Prime Minister or a Chief Minister and their respective Leader of the Opposition do not agree on any person to be appointed as a care-taker Prime Minister or the care-taker Chief Minister, as the case may be, the provisions of Article 224A shall be followed:” ; and (Hi) in the second proviso, for the word “further” the word “also” shall be substituted; and , (b) in clause (6), for the full stop, at the end, a colon shall be substituted and thereafter the following proviso shall be added, namely:. “Provided that if at any time the party list is exhausted, the concerned political party may submit a name for any vacancy which may occur thereafter”. Insertion of new Article 224A of the Constitution,- After Article 224, amended as aforesaid, the following new Article shall be inserted, namely:“224A. Resolution by Committee or Election Commission.- (1) In case the Prime Minister and the “Leader of the Opposition in the outgoing National Assembly do not agree on any person to be appointed as the care-taker Prime Minister, within three days of the dissolution of the National Assembly, they shall forward two nominees each to a Committee to be immediately constituted by the Speaker of the National Assembly, comprising eight members of the outgoing National Assembly or the Senate, having equal representation from the Treasury and the Opposition, to be nominated by the Prime Minister and the Leader of the Opposition respectively. In case a Chief Minister and the Leader of the Opposition in the outgoing Provincial Assembly do not agree on any person to be appointed as the care-taker Chief Minister, within three days of the dissolution of that Assembly, they shall forward two nominees each to a Committee to be immediately constituted by the Speaker of the Provincial Assembly, comprising eight members of the outgoing Provincial Assembly having equal representation from the Treasury and the Opposition, to be nominated by the Chief Minister and the Leader of the Opposition respectively. The Committee constituted under clause (1) or (2) shall finalize the name of the care-taker Prime Minister or care-taker Chief Minister, as the case may be, within three days of the referral of the matter to it: ■’ Provided that in case of inability of the Committee to decide the matter in the aforesaid period, the names of the nominees shall be referred to the Election Commission of Pakistan for final decision within two days. The incumbent Prime Minister and the incumbent Chief Minister shall continue to hold office till appointment of the care-taker Prime Minister and the care-taker Chief Minister, as the case may be. Notwithstanding anything
contained in clause (1) and-(2), if the members of the opposition are less than five in any Assembly then all of them shall be members of the Committee mentioned in the aforesaid clauses and the ‘ Committee shall be deemed to be duly constituted.” Amendment of the Second Schedule to the Constitution.In the Constitution, in the Second Schedule,. . (a). in paragraph 1,- (i) for the words “Chief Election Commissioner”, the words “Election Commission of Pakistan” shall be substituted; and (ii) after the word “and% occurring for the second time, the ‘ words “Chief Election Commissioner” shall be inserted; and (b) in paragraphs 2 and 22, for the words “Chief Election Commissioner”, the words “Election Commission of (Pakistan” shall be substituted. 6 Amendment of the Third Schedule to the Constitution.- In the Constitution, in the Third Schedule, in the Oath prescribed for the Chief Election Commissioner,(a) in the title, after the word “COMMISSIONER”, the words “ OR A MEMBER OF THE ELECTION COMMISSION OF PAKISTAN” shall be added; and, (b) after the word “Commissioner”, the words and commas “or, as the case may be, member of the Election Commission of Pakistan” shall be inserted.
Continued fRom Page 1 Opposition Leader Chaudhry Nisar Ali Khan raised some questions on the new amendments made into the agreed draft of the bill. adJournmenT: Upon request, the speaker adjourned the House for 20 minutes. However, this brief lull continued for around an hour and later both parties reached an agreement on the bill. Afterwards, the bill was passed unanimously. dIVIsIon: Though no one had opposed the bill, in the third reading the speaker opted for division in the House. All 247 members had to go to the ayes gallery and register their votes. Now the bill will be sent to the Senate and after its passage there, the bill will be sent to the president for approval to make it part of the constitution. Pm: Prime Minister Yousaf Raza Gilani assured the National Assembly that passage of the 20th Amendment would ensure a free, fair and credible ECP and a caretaker government. Speaking on the floor of the House after the bill was tabled, the prime minister said the government wanted to hold the general elections in a free and transparent manner so that nobody could raise a finger over its credibility and impartiality. “We want to ensure a fully autonomous election commission for holding free, fair and trans-
law being enforced Continued fRom Page 1
Amendment to the Constitution (Twentieth Amendment) BUI, 2012 1. New Clause 2 Clauses 2 to 10 shall be renumbered as clauses 3 to 11 respectively and the following new clause 2 shall be inserted, namely,“2, Amendment of Article 48 of the Constitution.- In the Constitution of the Islamic Republic of Pakistan, hereinafter referred to as the Constitution, in Article 48, in clause (5), in paragraph (b), after the word “Cabinet” the words “in accordance with the provisions of Article 224 or, as the case may be, Article 224 A” shall be added. 2. Clause 3 In Clause 3, renumbered as aforesaid, the words and comma “of the Islamic Republic of Pakistan, hereinafter referred to as the Constitution” shall be omitted. 3. Clause 9 In Clause 9 renumbered as aforesaid, in the proposed Article 224A,(a)in clause (1), after the word “Senate” the words “or both” shall be inserted. (b)in clause (2), for the word “eight” the word “six” shall be substituted. (c) for clause (5) the following shall be substituted namely,“(5) Notwithstanding anything contained in clauses (I) and (2), if the members of the Opposition are less than five in the Majlis-eShoora (Parliament) and less than four in any Provincial Assembly, then all of them shall be members of the Committee mentioned in the aforesaid clauses and the Committee shall be deemed to be duly constituted.”.
parent elections in the country so that no political party, like in the past, raises concerns of rigging,” said Gilani. Gilani said a lengthy debate between the government and the opposition was held to evolve consensus on the 20th Amendment. A special meeting of the federal cabinet was convened to give its unanimous approval. Agreeing with one of Nisar’s points, Gilani said there were some forces outside parliament that wanted to scuttle the 20th Amendment. “We are the leaders in parliament and it is our right to give it a direction,” he said. He agreed to Nisar’s suggestion of adjourning the session for some time to remove glitches in the draft bill. Regarding the issue of no opposition in Sindh and Balochistan assemblies, Gilani said a judicious system would be introduced in all the provinces and the suggestions of opposition leader would be implemented. nIsar: In a rare gesture of praise for the treasury, Nisar showered praises on the prime minister and said this unanimous bill would help strengthen the democratic process in the country. cabIneT: The federal cabinet, at a special sitting, approved the landmark draft bill of the 20th Amendment, paving the way for nomination of a consensus caretaker setup to hold general elections and empowering the
The court, however, rejected the report calling it dissatisfactory. Attorney for Secretary Railways Board Shafiqullah told the court that 87 acres of land had so far been retrieved from the illegal possession, whereas efforts were underway for retrieving the remaining land. Thousands of acres of Pr land sTIll occuPIed: The Supreme Court
was told on Tuesday that some 4,987 acres of Pakistan Railways (PR) land was still occupied by various departments, around 1,568 acres of which was occupied by the security forces alone. In compliance with the court’s earlier orders, PR and the National Accountability Bureau (NAB) submitted a report to a three-member bench, headed by Chief Justice Iftikhar Muhammad Chaudhry and comprising Justice Khilji
ECP to hold independent, free and fair elections in the country. The meeting, chaired by Prime Minister Gilani, also took up eight other items on the agenda but the focus remained on the historic bill, which was passed by the federal cabinet unanimously. InformaTIon mInIsTer: “The bill aims at amending six articles of the Constitution including 214, 215, 216, 218, 219 and 224 while another clause, Article 224-A, has been inserted into the constitution through the draft bill,” Information Minister Dr Firdous Ashiq Awan told reporters here at PM’s Secretariat. She said the bill had been drafted in consultation with all political parties with representation in parliament, including opposition parties. Moreover, she said in line with the pattern of the superior judiciary, from now on the members of the ECP would also take oath with the chief election commissioner. These posts would also be tenure postings for five years and they had been given constitutional protection, she said, adding that under the law, no member of the ECP could be fired and their removal would also be through the same process as with the judges. “This will help strengthen the democratic process and it will also bring transparency to the electoral
process,” she added. About the nomination of the caretaker prime minister, Dr Awan said under the 20th Amendment, after the dissolution of the incumbent National Assembly, the leader of the house and leader of the opposition would send a joint proposal to the president to name a caretaker prime minister within three days, who would then appoint the caretaker premier. Responding to a question, the minister said Nisar had not linked the Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz’s support for the 20th Amendment to reduction in petroleum prices. The minister said the four incumbent members of the ECP had been nominated on the recommendation of a 12-member parliamentary committee. She said the proposed amendment was not meant for a specific timeframe or to favour any party but for the times to come. She said that the cabinet had also appreciated the role of the National Database and Registration Authority (NADRA) in preparation of computerised electoral rolls carrying photographs of the voters. She said the cabinet was informed that special paper would be imported for the publication of ballot papers so that the doors of rigging could be closed forever.
Arif Hussain and Justice Tariq Parvez, which was hearing a case of massive corruption and irregularities in the Railways. However, the court termed the report dissatisfactory and ordered submission of a more detailed report by February 27. The court noted that its directions had not been implemented so far. The report stated that 67.635 acres of PR land had been retrieved but 4987.369 acres were still occupied by various departments and the security forces. Regarding the forensic audit, the re-
port stated that 14 firms had responded to PR’s Expression of Interest by February 10, 2012. It said that short-listing of the firms would be completed by March 5, 2012 followed by the issuance of requests for proposals to the selected firms. The report stated that a business train under the auspices of Public Private Partnership has successfully been launched on February 3 between Lahore and Karachi, and the Shalimar Express would be inaugurated on February 24 to run between Lahore and Karachi.
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Af-Pak petroleum transit hits snags g
Unrealistic security forces policies mean 150 trucks struck between Karachi and Torkham PESHAWAR
H E future of Pak-Afghan Transit Trade has hit a serious crisis due to the unrealistic policies of security forces’ officials who manage the Afghan border as over 150 trucks loaded petroleum products sit stranded between the Karachi Port and the Pak-Afghan border at Torkham. A national television debate on Monday revealed 30 vehicles were stranded only in Peshawar City Railway Station, 110 km from Jamrud till Torkham and hundreds of others between Karachi and Peshawar. The trucks are loaded with imported pe-
troleum products like lubricated oil, grease and motor oils. The goods are owned by Afghan traders engaged in transit trade for a long time. After banning NATO supplies, security and secret agency officials have ordered that all goods trucks loaded with petroleum products be stranded. Quarters concerned believe all products aid US-led allied troops and are treating all petroleum products as supplies to NATO. Khyber Pukhtoonkhwa Chamber of Commerce and Industries acting president Zia Ul Haq Sarhadi and Transit traders Association president Haji Gul Afzal Khan president expressed concern over the policies. They said unemployment in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa was rising after Afghan
traders had shifted to alternate routes through Iran and the Central Asian Republics. The debate pointed out that attacks against NATO trucks had meant supplies were already diminished to 40%. Asked to solve the problem, the traders said supplies being made through proper documents can be verified through internet and concerned supplies and manufacturing companies at Japan, Singapore and other foreign countries. Similarly, government functionaries could compare supplies with old statistics. They said the fall in Afghan transit trade had affected the income of Pakistan Railway, Federal Board of Revenue, Pakistan Customs and Karachi Port and called upon the government to re-
Arrested US diplomat returned to consulate
Vehicles of the uS Consulate parked at the police station. STAff PhoTo PESHAWAR STAFF RePORT
American diplomat in Peshawar William Arthur Charles, held at Peshawar airport for carrying cartridges in his luggage, was handed over to the US consulate on Tuesday. Charles (Passport No 910054498), who arrived at the airport to take a flight to Islamabad, was arrested after Airport Security Force personnel found 17 cartridges of 9mm in his luggage. Later he was handed over to the West Cantonment Police. After an enquiry, the Peshawar Police
handed him over to the US Consulate in Peshawar. US diplomats confirmed the arrest and said that the matter had been resolved without commenting further. Later in the evening, a Frontier Constabulary guard deputed at the US consulate died by accidentally pulling the trigger of his gun, APP reported. FC sources said the guard, Muhammad Sadiq, received serious injuries as a result of accidental fire and died soon after being taken to the Combined Military Hospital (CMH) Peshawar. Security officials said they were looking into the incident to ascertain the exact cause of his death.
Ji labels Pakistan Army ‘mercenary’ g
Announces hosting sit-in at Parade Avenue on 20th ISLAMABAD STAFF RePORT
Labeling the Pakistan Army a mercenary for helping the US and killing its own people, the Jamaat-e-Islami (JI) on Tuesday announced staging a sit-in from the platform of Difa-e-Pakistan Council (DPC) at the Parade Avenue on February 20 to protest against the possible reopening of the NATO supplies to Afghanistan through Pakistan. Addressing a press conference along with other leaders of the council, JI leader Muhammad Aslam accused the Pakistan Army of helping the US in anti-Muslim activities in exchange of money. He was of the view that the DPC did not want the government to have a part in killing of the Muslims in Afghanistan. He believed that the government was going to use the Parliamentary Committee on National Security for reopening the
NATO supply line. He said the council would not let the government sign the “document of slavery”. He said restoration of NATO supplies would be tantamount to mocking national honour and sovereignty. He said the DPC’s agenda was clear that NATO supply should remain discontinued. Mian Aslam said the sit-in would continue until Maghrib prayers to make the government realise that the nation did not want reopening of NATO supplies through Pakistan. To a question, he said the council would also press the government for withdrawal of air facility to transport supplies to the NATO forces in Afghanistan. He asked the government to get Pasni and Dalbandin airbases vacated from the US and scrap all the security related agreements with the country. The JI leader dubbed India a killer, aggressor and usurper and also criticised the government for declaring her the Most Favoured Nation (MFN) status.
solve the issue at its earliest. During the debate, KP politicians, including Awami National Party members, were criticised over their silence over Pak Afghan Transit Trade. They said the Punjab leadership from both PPP and PML-N had unanimously encouraged land route trade with India whereas the KP leadership stayed silence as Pak Afghan Transit Trade takes its last breaths. ANP Senator Ilyas Ahmad Bilour is a Senator since 1989 while staunch rival Haji Ghulam Ali is a Senator for three years but both will fail to resolve the problem. Earlier, the National Logistic Cell and 1995 Negative List affected the transit trade and now the NATO supply ban had created the next problem.
Five newborns found dead in garbage dump KARACHI NNI
Bodies of five newborn babies were found in a garbage dump at Akhtar Colony. Officials said that scavengers informed police about five bodies in a garbage dump near a residential area in Akhtar Colony Sector E. “The dead newborns might have been dumped last night. We have shifted them to Jinnah Hospital for medico-legal formalities,” SHO Muqeem Khan said. He said that all babies, found in a basket, were aged between three to five months, adding that they might have been dumped by any illegal maternity centre.
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wednesday, 15 February, 2012
Pentagon seeks $88.5b war expenses in Afghanistan WASHINGTON
S Defence Department has said that President Barack Obama sent to Congress earlier in the day a proposed defense budget of $613.9 billion for 2013 that is to begin in October. The Pentagon said that the budget represents a shift in defence priorities and spending cuts. According to the Pentagon, the request includes $525.4 billion in discretionary budget authority to fund base defence programmes and $88.5 billion war fighting expenses, primarily in Afghanistan. The budget request applies a strategic guidance released earlier this year to force structure and investment. The defence strategic guidance, “Sustaining US Global Leadership: Priorities for 21st Century Defence,” shifts US defense priorities to the Asia Pacific region and promises to reduce planned spending by $259 billion over the next five years and
$487 billion over 10 years. “This budget plan represents a historic shift to the future, recognising that we are at a strategic point after a decade of war,” Defence Secretary Leon Panetta said. The $88.5 billion in war fighting expenses was $26.6 billion below the 2012 enacted budget of $115.1 billion. The Pentagon said the proposed budget reflects the withdrawal of combat troops from Iraq in December 2011, as well as savings due to operational progress in Afghanistan and the transition to Afghan responsibility for security. The defence budget request is made against a backdrop of drastic spending cuts across the board. The administration said those levels are consistent with the Budget Control Act, which mandates the federal budget cuts, but did not reflect sequesters that are set to take effect in 2013 if Congress cannot identify the cuts mandated by the Budget Control Act. The sequestration mechanism would cut over a trillion dollars in spending evenly between civilian and defense programmes.
Karzai to push for access to Pakistan-based Taliban leaders Kabul: Afghan President Hamid Karzai will press Pakistan to provide access to senior Afghan Taliban leaders when he visits Islamabad this week in a bid to advance a nascent peace process with the militant group, senior Afghan officials said Tuesday. “We hope that Pakistan will arrange a purposeful meeting between us and so that we find a solution to our own problems,” said one Afghan official, emphasizing hopes of direct talks with Taliban leaders belonging so the so-called Quetta Shura. “Pakistan has paid little attention to our concerns and the level is cooperation has not been sincere or honest so far.” Pakistan has consistently denied giving sanctuary to insurgents and denies the existence of any Quetta Shura, or leadership council. ReuTeRS
Changes in fCR condemned in seminar PESHAWAR STAFF RePORT
Speakers at a forum of tribal elders and lawyers held by the Pak-US Alumni Network Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and TRDO in Lincolns Corner, University of Peshawar on Tuesday declared amendments in the Frontier Crimes Regulations (FCR) as academic instead of practical which would lead to making the law more deadly for the people of FATA. They said that jurisdiction of
high courts and the Supreme Court must be extended to FATA and the area be governed according to the 1973 constitution rather than a regulation. The speakers said that as long as corruption prevails in the country no reforms could be implemented and FATA was no different, as the government’s writ was always under threat there. The people of North Waziristan took active part in liberation from the UK but after independence they were deprived of basic needs and fundamental human
rights, North Waziristan tribal elder Malik Khan Mirjan said. He said that 10 million people must be taken into consideration and FATA be made a separate province as Qabailistan for which a resolution was pending in the National Assembly (NA) since last year. Criticising the role of FATA MNAs, Mirjan said that they did not have an agenda for FATA and most of them took dictation from political agents before they speak about an issue concerning FATA in the NA.
SAMAhNI: A wall-chalking mocks WAPDA over inflated bills inspite of continued power outages. inP
Do the Taliban really want to negotiate with Karzai? g
US bid to spark Afghan-led peace talks faces hurdles WASHINGTON AFP
The United States is engaging in intense exploratory talks with the Taliban in a bid to launch Afghan-led negotiations aimed at ending a decade-long war, but such negotiations face daunting hurdles. Questions swirl around a flurry of talks involving State Department special envoy Marc Grossman who wants the Taliban to set up an office in the Gulf Arab state of Qatar to serve as an open platform for negotiations. Analysts said that while the United States has made clear it intends to hand negotiations over to the Afghans and see the bulk of US and allied forces leave by 2014, Washington does not know Taliban intentions. Do the Taliban really want to negotiate with Afghan President Hamid Karzai’s government, which they call a US puppet, and seek a political process? Or do they simply want the exit of all foreign troops from Afghanistan? “We may not be able to discern the answers for some time,” according to Bruce Riedel, a south Asia and Middle East expert with the Brookings Institution think tank in Washington. Then there is the unanswered question, he said, of whether the Pakistani military — which he believes exerts “enormous control over the Taliban leadership” — is “interested in a real political process.” “I think in practice what this means is a very, very careful (US) approach with low expectations until we see whether we can answer these two questions,” said Riedel, a former CIA analyst and White House advisor. “As confidence-building measures, analysts said, the United States would like to test Taliban intentions with “local ceasefires” while the Taliban wants Washington to release five prisoners from the US prison in Guantanamo
Bay. With President Barack Obama facing reelection in November, his administration has said it has taken no such decision. “That’s a very sensitive domestic political issue in the United States in an election year,” Riedel said. Ashley Tellis, an analyst with the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, said it would be “dreadfully premature” for Washington to release prisoners until the Taliban make clear they are interested in a peace process. Such a deal, analysts said, would probably involve transferring such prisoners to house arrest in Qatar. Local ceasefires, Tellis said, can be reneged upon after the bulk of forces leave. On the positive side, Tellis said “the administration has confidence for the first time that they are actually speaking to the right people,” who are delegates of the Quetta Shura of Mullah Omar, the Taliban spiritual leader. Tellis said he believed the US intention is to strike a deal with the Taliban by the end of 2014. “But I don’t know of anyone outside the government who believes that such a deal is possible on that timeline,” he added. One reason such a timeline is too ambitious, he said, is that “there are fundamental questions about whether the Taliban will actually agree to the Afghan constitution,” which includes protections for women. Another is “the whole question of how exactly does one implement and operationalize the demand that the Taliban lay down arms,” when so many factions will be involved, he said. The United States would also like the Taliban to break with Al-Qaeda, but enforcing any such “promise will be difficult,” Tellis said. There is an even greater obstacle for the Taliban, who have publicly called for the exit of all foreigners from Afghanistan and yet the United States wants to keep a residual force there for long after 2014, he said.
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Valentines Day celebrated PAge 07
IcT administration decides to auction unclaimed vehicles ISLAMABAD STAFF RePORT
The Islamabad Capital Territory (ICT) administration has decided to auction all unclaimed vehicles parked in various police stations of the city. The ICT administration on Tuesday directed all the police stations of Islamabad to provide details of unclaimed vehicles within their respective jurisdictions for their immediate disposal, after observing the required legal formalities. According to details, the district administration, on the directions of Deputy Commissioner Amer Ali Ahmed and in consultation with SSP Muhammad Yousaf Malik, asked all the SHOs to provide details of unclaimed vehicles within the jurisdiction of each police station for their immediate disposal. Deputy Commissioner Amer Ali Ahmed directed the officials to prepare a list of unclaimed vehicles within a week. He said that timely disposal of unclaimed vehicles would discourage their misuse. He added a committee had already been constituted to dispose of such vehicles.
FIA gets remand of land scam accused ISLAMABAD STAFF RePORT
ISLAMABAD: Gilgit-Baltistan students protest outside the National Press Club against appointment of Supreme Appellate Court chief judge belonging to Punjab. STAff PhoTo
Shahbaz Bhatti’s alleged killer remanded for 7 days RAWALPINDI
HE Anti Terrorism Court (ATC) on Tuesday granted seven-day physical remand of alleged killer of former Federal Minister for minorities affairs Shahbaz Bhatti. The Industrial Area police produced the accused Abid Malik before the ATC Number 2 Rawalpindi and sought his physical remand. The court while accepting the request of police, granted seven days physical remand of the accused. During the hearing, police told the court that the relatives Shahbaz Bhatti in their supplementary statements have suspected the two men Abid Malik and Zia-urRehman for their involvement in Bhatti murder case. Later both accused fled to Dubai. Police told the court that Abid Malik was nabbed the other day from Lahore airport upon his return from Dubai. The police also apprised the court that the other accused Zia-ur-Rehman has also been arrested by Dubai police and efforts were being made for bringing him back to Islamabad. sTaTe gIVen noTIce on anJum aqeel’s baIl Plea : Justice Azim Khan Afridi of the Islamabad High Court (IHC) on Tuesday issued notice to the state on the bail plea filed by Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz MNA Anjum Aqeel Khan. Khan along with two other co-accused was arrested on December 3, 2011, on refusal of his bail plea by a special judge central under the allegation of causing six billion rupees loss to the National Police Foundation (NPF) during the period of 1997 to 2003 on the account of different agreements with the foundation. Citing the state as respondent, Advocate Tanveer Iqbal, counsel for Khan, submitted before the court that his client was under treatment in Pakistan Institute of Medical Sciences (PIMS). He said the case against his client was false and
baseless who was also suffering from mitral and aortic valve disease and presently admitted in PIMS due to severe pulmonary hypertension and atrial fibrillation. He stated it is the settled legal proposition that bail is not to be withheld as punishment, adding the object of criminal prosecution is not to punish an accused person for the offence alleged against him but to make him face the trial and answer the criminal charges against him. He informed the court that co-accused Khuda Bakhs and Chaudhry Iftikhar Ahmad Khan had already been allowed post-arrest bail by the special judge central. He prayed to the court to accept his petition and grant his client post-arrest bale till final decision of the case. Khurram rasool’s remand exTended for anoTher 3 days: Civil Judge Sheikh Muhammad Habib Ullah extended the physical remand for three more days on Tuesday of Mian Khurram Rasool, former media advisor to the Prime Minister. He is being held for his involvement in the embezzlement of about Rs 1 million. Mian Khurram Rasool was produced by the Federal Investigation Agency (FIA) officials before the court. The FIA investigators requested the court to extend the physical remand of the accused. On this Judge Muhammad Habib extended the remand and directed the FIA to produce the accused before the court on 16 February, when the case would next be heard. Rasool was accused of fraudulently minting money from intended pilgrims. The complainant in his application told the FIA that he, along with other 8 people, gave Rasool Rs 9, 45000 (Rs 10, 5000 each) and passports for sending them to the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia to perform Hajj. However, Rasool confiscated the passports of the nine people and did not send them to perform Hajj.
Appointment of gb’s chief judge protested ISLAMABAD STAFF RePORT
Students, lawyers and civil society activists from Gilgit-Baltistan staged a protest demonstration Tuesday against the appointment of chief judge of the supreme appellate court of Gilgit-Baltistan. The protesters demanded of the government to remove the newly-appointed chief judge belonging to Punjab province and demanded the appointment of a local judge for the chief appellate court of their province. They were of the view that Chief Judge Rana Rashid was already dismissed from the Lahore High Court under order no 1996 P324 of PLD by the Supreme Court of Pakistan. Besides, he did not belong to the soil of Gilgit-Baltistan, they alleged. The angry protestors chanted slogans during the protest and demanded to appoint a local judge belonging to the soil where the court is situated.
Senior Civil Judge Shahrukh Arjumand on Tuesday granted three-day physical remand of another accused in Kurri Land scam. On Tuesday, the FIA produced two accused in the same scam after which the court sent one of the earlier arrested accused Mukhtiar Ahmad to jail while granted physical remand of the accused Rasheed Minhas. The FIA official informed the court that both the accused are members of ten member committee which made wrong recommendations for the allotment of plots. Senior Civil Judge Shahrukh Anjumand granted three days physical remand of one accused (Rasheed Minhas) while Mukhtar Ahmed was sent to judicial lock up at Adyala Jail Rawalpindi.
girl foils rape bid Islamabad: Shahzad Town police on Tuesday arrested a 25-year-old man for allegedly attempting to rape a school girl. According to the police, an 11-yearold girl was going to purchase milk from a nearby shop. On her way she was asked by her neighbor to come to his house. As she entered his house, he attempted to rape her. On hearing the girl’s cries, other neighbors rushed to the spot and saved the girl. STAFF RePORT
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ESIDES giving lovebirds a chance to express their love, the Valentines Day on Tuesday also brought happiness to the flower vendors of the twin cities of Rawalpindi and Islamabad. Large crowds thronged the Islamabad flower markets, particularly in sectors F/6 and F/10. Taking advantage of the occasion, flower vendors also increased their rates. “Usually I sell one flower for Rs 10 but today I am selling the same for Rs 50.” “We increase the rates as no one wants to buy cheap flowers on this day,” said Hussain Razaq a flower vendor. In the capital city, many teenagers remained outdoors throughout the day to observe Valentines Day. However, when asked about the day’s history, the youngsters could not come up with answers. “I always considered 14th February as an opportunity to express your feelings for a person you liked,” said Hamad Azam a private college student. Some students believed that family members, including parents should also their children’s valentines and that children should express for them. Saint Valentine’s Day, often simply called Valentine’s Day, is a holiday observed on February 14 honouring one or more early Christian martyrs named Valentines. It was first established by Pope Gelasius in 496 AD, but was later deleted from the General Roman Calender of saints in 1969 by Pope Paul VI. It is celebrated in hundreds of countries around the world, mostly in the West, although it remains a working day in all of them. The day first became associated with romantic love in the circle of Geoffrey Chaucer in the High Middle Ages, when the tradition of courtly love flourished. By the 15th century, it had evolved into an
Flower vendors see surge in business as teenagers take to streets
occasion in which lovers expressed their love for each other by presenting flowers, offering confectionary, and sending greeting cards (known as “valentines”). Modern Valentine’s Day symbols include the heart shaped outlines, doves, and the figure of the winged Cupid. Since the 19th century, handwritten valentines have given way to mass-produced greeting cards. Most of the fast food restaurants remained
jam packed with families as a lot of the people preferred to celebrate the day with their family members. Mobile phones and social networking sites such as Facebook were inundated with messages for and against celebrating Valentine’s Day, as both sides try to gain a wider audience. Some also opposed the idea of celebrating the day. Talking with Pakistan Today, Azmat, a student of a government college said celebrating Valentine’s Day was against the norms of an Islamic society. He stated that Valentine’s Day celebrations started after Valentine was beheaded by a Roman emperor for going against his orders. He added that celebrating Valentine’s Day meant the people were celebrating Valentine’s death, which was neither logical nor ethical.
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wazir Khan mosque
dATe And TIMe: FebrUAry 16, 2012 AT 6:00 PM VenUe: KUch KhAAS
dATe And TIMe: FrIdAy, Feb 17, 2012, AT 4:00 PM VenUe: nATIonAl ArT gAllery, ISlAMAbAd
rawalpindi, named after raja Pindi, is a bustling city on the northernmost part of the Punjab province. It is the main cantonment of the army with the headquarters based here. The cantonment evokes th ...
Pakistan national council of the Arts invites you to the launching if the book "wazir Khan Mosque (rediscovered)" by Memoona Khan. opening remarks: Ms. Mussarat nahid Immam (director VAd/national Art gallery). welcome Address: Mr. Tauqeer A. nasir (ce/director general, PncA
dATe And TIMe: 05:00 PM, weeKly eVenT VenUe: The cenTre For ArTS And cUlTUre our drumming circle is a (free!) ongoing event and is held every Friday from 5 to 6 p.m. we are having a great time, and want to share the good time with you! our drumming circle has children ...
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chile for boosting trade with Pakistan ISLAMABAD STAFF RePORT
Pakistan and Chile have great potential of trade and investment in many sectors which needs to be exploited through greater co-operation between the two countries. This was stated by Chilean Director of AsiaPacific, Ambassador José Miguel de la Cruz in a meeting with Yassar Sakhi Butt, President, Islamabad Chamber of Commerce and Industry (ICCI), says a press release issued here on Tuesday. The ambassador said that that chambers of commerce and industry could play an important role in building trade relations between the entrepreneurs of both the countries. He said Chile had received foreign investment of $80 billion during the last year. It had also signed free trade agreements with 60 countries to tap in further opportunities of business with rest of the world, he added. Speaking on the occasion, Yassar Sakhi Butt said Pakistan is a peaceful nation but he regretted the role of international media that portrayed negative image of Pakistan which discouraged foreign buyers and investors. He said Pakistan offered lucrative investment opportunities in mining, energy, oil and gas, agriculture, infrastructure development, construction and in many other sectors of its economy. The ICCI president said Chilean investors should take advantage of these opportunities and by investing in Pakistan, they could cater to the needs of a rapidly growing domestic market by exporting surplus products around the world.
ISLAMABAD: Rabeea hadi of Aurat Foundation addresses a press conference on violence against women at a local hotel. STAff PhoTo
Aurat Foundation launches report on violence against women ISLAMABAD
Progress on automation of land revenue record reviewed ISLAMABAD STAFF RePORT
Islamabad Chief Commissioner Tariq Mahmood Pirzada reviewed the progress on Tuesday of the on-going automation of the land revenue records of the Islamabad rural areas. Expressing his displeasure on the slow pace of work on the project, he said: “The government’s electronic department has been working on the project for the last 7 years but no significant progress has been made.” He was presiding over a meeting held to review the project’s progress. The chief commissioner directed the project director and Islamabad ADC Farasat Ali Khan, Assistant Commissioner (Secretariat) Nouman Yousaf to visit the Punjab Land Revenue Department and collect the details of the software developed by the department for data entry of the land records. He also directed them to look into the working of the system in place at the revenue department. “If the software developed by the Punjab Revenue Department is working successfully, it should be replicated in the Islamabad Capital Territory for the computerisation of the land revenue record. This should be done immediately so that the land record data can be entered on a speedy basis,” the chief commissioner said. It was also decided in the meeting that sufficient space would be provided to the Electronic Government Department to install an internet server in the new ICT Administration building to provide internet connections to the ICT officials’ offices.
HE Aurat Foundation (AF) launched its fourth Annual Statistics of Violence against Women report on Tuesday. The report is a part of its continuous efforts to highlight the issue of violence against women and its different manifestations in the Pakistani society. The research provided an insight into the incidents of violence against women in the country during 2011. Based on media reports, the compiled data not only gives provides information about the offences reported from across the country but also provided a comparative analysis of different provinces with respect to violence incidents. The fourth annual report showed that 8539 women became victims of violence in 2011 and there was an overall 6.74 percent increase in the reported cases of violence in the country as com-
pared to year 2010. The figure was 8000 in 2010; in 2009, 8548 incidents of violence against women were reported; in 2008, these incidents numbered 7571. The report depicted that the incidents of violence in the last four years mostly numbered in the same range and that the country had not witnessed any decrease in the crimes against women. This reflected that neither the state nor the society was responding to curb uncivilised behaviour. However, some forms of violence had seen notable increase. For instance, sexual assault cases increased by 48.65 percent, acid throwing cases increased by 37.5 percent; ‘honour’ killings by 26.57 percent and domestic violence increased by 25.51 percent. AF considered this number as the ‘tip of the iceberg’ as the data collected by their staff was solely based on the cases reported in the media, while a majority of the cases remain unreported. The report stated that for a large number of
commeners’ entry in exam centres banned Islamabad: The Capital Territory administration banned unauthorised people from entering the MA/MSc Punjab University Examination center under Section 144 of the Criminal Procedure Code (CRPC). District Magistrate, Industrial Assailant Commissioner, Imran Ali Sultan issued the orders to the departments concerned and warned the citizens that unauthorised people were banned from coming within a 200 yard radius of the examination center. He said only the candidates who had roll number slips from the Punjab University Controller of Examinations and the teachers concerned were allowed to enter the examination center in H-9 Model College for Boys. He added that any infringement of the order would be punishable under section 188 of the Pakistan Penal Code (PPC). ONLINe
Two rear admirals promoted to vice admiral ISLAMABAD PReSS ReLeASe
Rear Admirals Muhammad Shafiq and Muhammad Zakaullah have been promoted to the rank of vice admiral with immediate effect. Vice Admiral Muhammad Shafiq was commissioned in the Operations Branch of Pakistan Navy in June 1977. The vice admiral has served on many important command and staff appointments including 2nd in command of a destroyer, command of Naval Air Wing and Naval Aviation. His major staff appointments include deputy director at JSHQ, director maritime affairs at NHQ, DDG PMSA, drafting authority, directing staff at NDU, chief inspector (Navy) and deputy chief of naval staff (Projects-2). His professional courses include naval command and staff course from Indonesia and armed forces war course from National Defense University (NDU), Islamabad. He holds MSc (War Studies) degree from Quaid-i-Azam University. Presently he is serving at NHQ as deputy chief of naval staff (Admin). In recognition of his services, he has been awarded Sitara-e-Imtiaz (Military) and Hilale-Imtiaz (Military). Rear Admiral Muhammad Zakaullah was commissioned in the operations branch of Pakistan Navy in June 1978. He is a recipient of the
Vice Admiral Shafiq
Sword of Honour. On his graduation, he was awarded chief of the naval staff gold medal. The vice admiral is a Graduate of Royal Naval Staff College (UK) and National Defence University, Islamabad. He holds MA (Defence Studies) degree from London University and MSc (War Studies) degree from Quaid-e-Azam University. He has had the privilege of commanding the destroyer PNS Tippu Sultan, Pakistan Naval Academy, and the 25th destroyer squadron. His other distinguished appointments include directing staff PN Staff College, assistant chief of naval staff (Plans) and Defence Attaché in Qatar. As a flag officer, he served as director general National Accountability Bu-
Vice Admiral Shafqat Jawed
reau (Rawalpindi), chief inspector (Navy), commander Combined Task Force-150, deputy chief of naval staff (Training & Personnel) and naval secretary. Presently he is serving as Commander Pakistan Fleet. In recognition of his services he has been awarded President’s Award for Pride of Performance, President’s Medal, Tamgha-e-Imtiaz (Military), Sitara-e-Imtiaz (Military) and Hilal-e-Imtiaz (Military). Rear Admiral Shafqat Jawed has been promoted to the rank of Vice Admiral with immediate effect. The Vice Admiral was Commissioned in the Operations Branch of Pakistan Navy in June 1978. The Vice Admiral has served at various Command and Staff appointments
Vice Admiral Zakaullah
including Commanding Officer PNS SHAHJAHAN, Directing staff at PN War College, Director Naval Operations at NHQ, Director Ops & Plans JSHQ, Assistant Chief of the Naval Staff (Operations), Commander Auxiliary and Mine Warfare Squadron, Mission Commander at CHINA, Additional SecretaryIII at Ministry of Defence, Flag Officer Sea Training and Deputy Chief of Naval Staff (Operations). His professional courses include Naval Command Course, USA and National Defence Course from National Defence University, Islamabad. Presently he is serving as Deputy Chief of the Naval Staff (Projects). In recognition of his meritorious service he has been awarded Sitarae-Imtiaz (Military).
incidents, the FIRs were not lodged which reflected the reluctance of the victims to involve the police. Among the 8539 incidents, FIRs were registered in 6745 cases; for 911 cases the FIRs were not registered and there was no information available in 883 cases. The biggest number of unregistered cases was noted in Sindh where FIRs were not registered in 605 cases and no information was available in 75 incidents among the total of 1316 reported cases. In the process of collecting the data, the AF staff observed some trends that, if allowed to continue, will further aggravate the situation of violence against women in the country. One such trend was noticed in Balochistan where, in most of the cases of Siah Kari (honour killing), the women were killed on the orders of the Jirga. However, the same Jirga let the men involved in these incidents to live after receiving hefty amounts of money in terms of compensation.
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Verdict on airport entry fee held in abeyance RAWALPINDI ONLINe
Justice Ijaz Ahmed of the Lahore High Court, Rawalpindi Bench, on Tuesday kept in abeyance his earlier decision in which he had debarred civil aviation authority to collect entry fee from the individuals entering in Benazir International Airport Islamabad. Adnan Saeed Malik, director legal of competition commission of Pakistan had appeared and requested the Court that a short adjournment be granted to submit parawise comments on behalf of the commission. He also asserted that the commission has already declared such entry as discriminatory in the year 2010, whereupon he is directed to submit the reply in two days positively and meanwhile the injunction order is kept in abeyance and the case is fixed for final argument on February 20.
residents protest against evacuation
ISLAMABAD: Activists of Drivers’ Association protest in favour of their demands outside the National Press Club. STAff PhoTo
Apples help stop lung disease ISLAMABAD ONLINe
Apples are super food that help stop lung disease even in coal miners. Lung disease is a very serious illness that is increasingly occurring among Americans. This also applies to people who have never smoked, but are becoming more susceptible to this disorder than ever before. A recent study revealed a superfood that is very inexpensive, and readily available yearround, that amazingly has the ability to help and could prevent lung disease. For instance, in a recent study French researchers found a flavanoid called “phloridzin” that is only found in apples. Researchers claim phloridzin helps protect post-menopausal women from osteoporosis and may also increase bone density. Another bone benefit from apples is boron, which strengthens bones. Studies reported on the ability of apples to help common disorders like heart disease, diabetes, cancer (especially colon cancer, prostate cancer and lung cancer), dementia, inflammation, arthritis, high cholesterol, heartburn and much more.
can Vitamin-c become deadly? ISLAMABAD ONLINe
Vitamin C is promoted so much that many food companies add it to their products. Most people think that sounds great, but it can be a potentially dangerous or even deadly combination with certain foods. A common preservative used in foods and beverages called sodium benzoate that can be a deadly cocktail when mixed with vitamin C. Sodium benzoate (SB), also called benzoate of soda or E211, is in juices, pickles, soft drinks, soy sauce, mustard, duck sauce, salad dressings, jams and other ingestible products. Some naturally occurring vitamin C is in many canned or bottled juices. It is in soft drinks, snack foods, cereals, and added to many supplements. When we mix it with ascorbic acid (vitamin C), a chemical reaction occurs and it creates “benzene,” which is a proven carcinogen. A serious discovery upon testing 84 different soft drinks, found that 54 of them contained benzene. Some had levels 16 times higher than what the government allows in drinking water. Even though the laws state that drinking water should have less than 5 ppb of benzene, there is no legal limit on benzene in other drinks.
Islamic teachings can solve all problems: speakers ISLAMABAD
GNORING Islamic teachings is the root cause of all problems being confronted by the Muslims around the world, said speakers and participants of a seminar held here on Tuesday. The seminar on Seeratun Nabi was organised by international Islamic University Islamabad (IIUI). Justice Shahzado Sheikh, Judge Shariat Court, and Dr Tahir Mansoori presided over the wherein IIUI Vice President Prof Dr Sahibzada Sajid-urRehman was the chief guest. Speaking on the occasion, Sahibzada Sajid said that success of this world and
hereafter could not be achieved without practicing Seerat-e-Tayyaba. He said the main objective of establishing the IIUI was not only to teach the students ancient and modern sciences but also to promote teachings of Islam and Sunnah. Sahibzada said students of Faculty of Shariah & Law, Dawah Academy and Faculty of Usuluddin proved mettle not only in Pakistan but also abroad. He said the main objective of subsidiaries of the IIUI such as Iqbal International Institute, International Institute for Islamic Research, Dawah Academy and Shariah Academy was to introduce common man to the teachings of Islam. Justice Shahzado Sheikh said personality of Hazrat Muhammad (PBUH)
is the centre of religion. Religion moves around Holy Prophet Muhammad (PBUH), he said. He said: “Until we adopt golden principles of Seerat-eTayyaba (PBUH) in our lives, we cannot get its advantages in our lives.” Quoting the Holy Quran, Dr Tahir Mansoori said Allah almighty has made the Holy Prophet (PBUH) a source of guidance for human beings in each and every matter of life. Before this Moulana Zahid-urRashidi spoke on “Mohsin-e-Insaniat” and Dr Shabbir Ahmad Mansoori delivered a lecture on “Seerat-e-Nabvi Aur Hamari Zindagi”. The IIUI faculty members, administrative officers and a large number of students also attended the lectures.
Habib Colony residents protested against the Pakistan Railways’ drive to evacuate ten houses in the area. They said that the railway authorities had given only a ten-day notice before the evacuation, saying that the houses were illegally constructed on Pakistan Railway’s land. “We have constructed our houses after getting ownership of the land and have been living here for the past 32 years,” residents said. Meanwhile, the railway authorities warned the residents that they had encroached on railway land and warned them to evacuate the land within the specified time frame otherwise stern action would be taken against them. “Haji Nawaz Khan sold this land to us at Rs 3000 per marla in 1980 but we are facing this uncertain situation due to the connivance between the railway authorities and Haji Nawaz Khan,” they said. The residents appealed to the Chief Justice of Pakistan and the railway authorities concerned to setup an enquiry commission to investigate the matter.
5 districts dangerous for dengue virus RAWALPINDI ONLINe
The Punjab health department has declared five districts including Rawalpindi and Lahore dangerous for dengue virus this year. The directives inscribed with ‘emergency and the most top priority’ have been sent to the commissioners, DCOs and EDOs of Rawalpindi, Lahore, Multan, Faisalabad and Gujranwala. The notification says that five districts are vulnerable to dengue virus as the presence of dengue reproduction has been detected in these areas. The health department has warned the district authorities that this year dengue could be more fatal as compared to the last year, so timely measures are needed to taken immediately. The department fears that children could be the victim of the virus. However, 15 machines have been upgraded for spray and duties have also been assigned to the newly-appointed staff so that spray could be launched after rains. The EDO health, Rawalpindi, has said that all the tyre shops, parks, colleges and schools are being registered. The health department has also directed the districts to provide cer-
tain medicines to the victims to handle the situation in emergency. sho Transferred: The Station House Officer (SHO) of Shahzad Town Mohammad Hussain Laasi has been transferred to Sahala Police Station. Sub-inspector Naeem-ul-din Sheikh has also been SHO of Shahzad Town while the Sahala Police Station SHO has been transferred to Rescue 15. shoPs demolIshed for non-PaymenT of forced Tax: resIdenTs: Residents have alleged that the Capital Development Authority (CDA) has demolished three shops taking two youngsters into custody for not paying forced tax in the green belt of sector E11/2. CDA’s Enforcement Department bulldozed these shops in the vicinity of Golra police station. The inhabitants have launched protest campaign against what they called unlawful bulldozing and alleged CDA of taking a huge amount of money as forced tax, monthly. Talking to Online, victims said that they would not let the CDA force them extort money from them. According to them, CDA wanted to show the green belt as a part of the sector for more forced tax. CDA had not paid the compensation money to the landowners of the area so far.
ISLAMABAD: An elderly woman protests against Wah Cantt police outside the National Press Club. STAff PhoTo
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Editor’s mail 11
Samjhota express bombing case In a major breakthrough, India’s NIA has arrested one Chauhan, a member of the Hindu extremist group, who masterminded the Samjhauta Express bombing in 2007 that killed more than 70 innocent Muslims, mostly Pakistanis. His group has been found involved in hundreds of acts of violence and terrorism across India. This has certainly exposed the Hindu extremist groups involved in terror activities inside India. Chauhan was held from Indore, and already a Hindu Swami Assemanad, member of the RSS, made confessions of involvement in the then Indian army’s serving Colonel Prohit-led act of disastrous blast. Primarily the Indian police and government officials hurled their traditional accusation on Pakistan and LeT but later a retired Indian police official Mushraff in his best selling book unmasked a number of Hindus, including a serving Colonel and Major of the Indian army who have been providing IEDs and bomb-making components to Hindu assailants. After a lapse of five years no significant progress was made despite Mushraff’s disclosures. The 2008 Mumbai attacks case also seems stage-managed, but the Indian government has made startling twists. The recent being the planners watched the Mumbai attacks live via cameras while sitting in a rented house in
Karachi. This also seems to be an effort to implicate Pakistan and its security agencies. The Indian government sanctioned its National Investigation Agency in December 2011 to charge sheet nine people including an American Mr Headley and others. But given the Hindu extremists counts, if the independent investigations are made in the direction of Samjhauta like cases, hopefully the real culprits can be found from within the same Hindu groups that are active there. Unfortunately, these cases are being blindly backed by the international community without any convincing evidence as nothing had been confirmed against the Pakistan based groups. Obviously it is aimed at implicating Pakistan, its army and ISI. India needs to further investigate and find out the real culprits from within their ranks. The international community should also not see it through one eye only. Such efforts on the sidelines of trade and cultural ties are to undermine Pakistani nation’s credentials in the eyes of the world community. FOZIA S NIAZI Islamabad (II) According to a news report a key suspect in the Samjhauta blast case has been held by India’s National Investiga-
Another resolution tion Agency. This is surely a great breakthrough as it exposes the Hindu extremist groups involved in terror activities inside India. Kamal Chauhan was captured from Indore and is being termed as the mastermind of the deadly blast that resulted in the death of 70 innocent Muslim passengers in 2007. Despite the lapse of five long years no significant progress has been seen over the case by the Indian authorities. Incidents of terrorism in India have always been suspiciously viewed as the work of external elements such as the Pakistan based religious organisation Lashkar-e-Taiba in India, thus becoming the popular India narrative circulated through Indian media extensively both nationally and internationally. The confessions made by Swami Aseemanad, an important member of RSS, had drastically changed ground realities and has stripped naked the true Indian face. The attack on the Indian parliament is another incident of terror that was used by the Indians to take military, political and diplomatic action against Pakistan as it happened soon after the 9/11 scenario. This became instrumental in accusing Pakistan for perpetrating cross border terrorism, thus gaining sympathy from the international com-
munity. The Indian case had been backed internationally without any convincing evidence as nothing had been confirmed against the Pakistan based groups. Saffron terrorism becomes the most vicious form emanating from the Indian soil that threatens to destroy the prospects of any relations between the two neighbours. The Indian authorities need to expose the saffron terror networks that operate with such blatant impunity upon its territory. For that it needs to increase efforts of its security apparatus as the Hindu extremists enjoy full support of the masses and have profoundly entrenched themselves into the societal fabric in such a manner that it poses great problems for the state to reverse its momentum. This network needs to be dismantled immediately if peace is to prevail in the region. As India is growing with great rapidity to become the biggest democracy to dominate South Asia, a core infested with terrorism of the most malignant nature can destabilize the entire region. Furthermore, the Indian authorities ought to speed up their investigation procedure to apprehend all the perpetrators of the Samjhauta blast case. AYAANA MALIK Islamabad
In bad taste After Pakistan won the ODI match against Afghanistan, I read a headline the next day in one of the leading Urdu newspaper of Pakistan to somewhat this meaning: Afridi and Younus proved to be drone attacks – Afghans can’t resist. It was not one of those headlines which should have made the press, it was in a bad taste. Drone attacks are serious issue which has caused many innocents deaths. It would have been better if editor of the leading Urdu newspaper have avoided this headline. This headline has hurt many people which also include people from Afghanistan. I hope that the editor regrets this mistake and in future restrains from making this type of headlines. MUBASHIR MAHMOOD Karachi
hr violations in IhK
Unknown men While listening to the news bulletin this morning, according to which some unknown men attacked a security checkpost at Nasirabad in Balochistan and killed two soldiers, one realises that a lot more needs to be known about the true state of insurgency in the province. Who are these unknown men? Why are they targeting security forces? Are they truly freedom fighters? Are they interested in bringing prosperity to their deprived province or are they interested only in dismantling the Pakistani state by forming alliances with Pakistan’s hostile neighbours and regional powers? Whatever the case may be, one thing is known for certain that the security apparatus is seen by them as the only force that has the capacity and the will to resist against such nefarious desires. The terrorist tendency to attack the law enforcers to inflict a blow to their resolve and to lower motivation levels is certainly not a new phenomenon in the backdrop of the war on terror. These unknown men are behind the worsening law and order situation of the province where the incompetence and absence of the provincial government provides ample space for them to carry their evil activities unashamedly. The killings and kidnappings, the threats and targeted attacks on specific communities and groups is something that has increased as they have entrenched their tentacles into the society. Why hasn’t anyone ever mentioned these ‘unknown men’ and highlighted them as the ones that are fuelling the insurgency in Balochistan? It is the prime duty of the provincial government to expose the true identity of these unknown men and to unearth their affiliations and links with terror outfits so that some clarity might be provided to the current state of uncertainty. LUBNA HAMEED Rawalpindi
The opposition in Pakistan parliament launched a resolution against the Congressional hearing on Balochistan, saying “this House strongly condemns the blatant interference in Pakistan's internal affairs evidenced by US Congressional Foreign Relations Sub-Committee hearing on Balochistan on 8 February 2012. This House notes with great concern that at a time when Pakistan-US relations are already under severe stress, the holding of such a hearing by the US Congress cannot but jeopardise the healing process and further inflame public opinion against the US by adding to the prevailing sense of mistrust and suspicion regarding US intentions towards Pakistan. “This House, therefore, calls upon the Government of Pakistan to convey to the United States Administration, in no uncertain terms, that a) such hearings relating to the internal affairs of Pakistan are totally unacceptable and the US Administration needs to play a more proactive role to discourage such ill-informed and motivated debate on sensitive issues relating to a sovereign country; b) to rebuild mutual trust and confidence, the US Administration should respect and comply with the will of the people of the Pakistan as expressed through various parliamentary resolutions and discontinue “drone attacks forthwith”. I would suggest that a similar strongworded resolution be brought in both the Upper House and Lower House of the Pakistan Parliament against India, giving it a call to stop interfering in the internal affairs of Pakistan, particularly with reference to Balochistan. Because the same nationalist groups’ representatives who participated in the Congressional hearing in US, had earlier attended two consecutive seminars in New Delhi. Would Ch. Nisar Ali Khan take the initiative? IMRAN JAMALI Dera Rojhan Jamali, Balochistan
No more cover for you It seems the government has not budged from its position of a strong stance against the judicial activism that we have witnessed recently. As the judiciary has turned down every effort of the government to take benefit from NRO, the government feels that its authority, the executive authority, has been encroached upon by the judiciary. Judiciary, meanwhile, has taken on the
The media manipulation This is with reference to the news published in an English daily on 8 February 2012 informing about a meeting between Ms Nina Maria, US Counsel General in Lahore and renowned senior journalist Mr Najam Sethi. Reportedly, it could not be ascertained what issues were discussed in the meeting. It is not just surprising but also suspicious that what really made the US Counsel General to pay late night visit to the senior journalist whose show, coincidently, on that particular night was a blatant outcry of his pro-US views especially vis-à-vis Pak-Iran gas pipeline. This is not just a case of America’s ingress into Pakistani media as few months back, ‘The Christian Science Monitor’ not only disclosed connection of an American organisation named ‘America Abroad Media (AAM)’ with two Pakistani journalists, Huma Imtiaz of ‘Express News’ and Awais Saleem of ‘Dunya News’ but also the funding from the organisation whilst working for other news outlets. It is deplorable to know how the US State Department is heavily involved in funding the journalists in Pakistan to give prominence to their own vested
government on its policies that have often led to controversies. All the NRO beneficiaries have been forced to face their cases again, which can and will, hurt the government and other political parties’ prospects in future. SIBT-E-HASSAN Lahore
agenda. The US is making investment in Pakistani journalists to side with it in this fourth generation warfare. In this kind of war, journalists are very important soldiers and their reports are effective weapons. This is called media manipulation. It is true that some factions in electronic media have either been thriving on conspiracy theories or indulged in pursuit of personal gains or have certain motivation for taking side but now at this critical juncture, when Pakistan is passing through the most difficult time of its history, the media needs to act responsibly. HINA ASHFAQ Islamabad
Indictment of PM The day of February 13, 2012 will be remembered in the history of Pakistan on which an elected prime minister appeared for the second time before the apex court. Prime Minister Syed Yousaf Raza Gilani is also the first prime minister of the country who has been indicted by the Supreme Court (SC). The second appearance of the premier before the SC depicts that the PPPled government and its prime minister fully respect the judiciary and by doing
so they have also showed the world that Pakistan is such a country where even its chief executive is accountable to the court. The premier has also set the example for the upcoming premiers and the democracies. Different talks were underway in this regard, some people were of the view that on Feb 13 PM Gilani will step down while others were of the view that PM will be convicted, but premier showed extreme maturity by appearing before the apex court. The main point which is to be noted is it that no PPP worker indulged in any violent protest across the country. This is highly laudable. All the political parties hailed PM Gilani’s appearance before SC, except the political tycoons of PML(N) and the PTI. Now the matter is before the mercy of Supreme Court of Pakistan. The government and the judiciary both should show maturity and there should be no clash between the institutions over a letter that at the end of the day might not mean very much at all. Democracy should survive in our country. It already had been weakened by the wrong policies of the past governments, especially by successive military rules. HAFIZ MUHAMMAD IRFAN Islamabad
The report by the Human Rights Watch (HRW) released last month pointed towards massive human rights violations by the Indian state, Indian army deployed in Kashmir and by denying access to basic amenities, food, health, education, security, and employment opportunities to not only people of Kashmir but also the minorities across India. The HRW report highlights significant HR problems such as custodial killings and police abuses; failure to implement policies to protect vulnerable communities; impunity for abuses committed by Indian security forces in J&K. There are restrictions on efforts of NGOs working for human rights; social unrest and protests in resource rich areas on equality; no-improvement in health care and education; no accountability regarding perpetrators of serious abuses; resistance by the Indian defence establishment to repeal or revise the Armed Forces Special Powers Act; forcible disappearance of thousands of Kashmiri people; HRC in J&K found 2,730 bodies in unmarked graves at 38 sites. The Indian army and paramilitary forces resist investigations and prosecutions; Maoists are arrested, tortured and killed and there is no accountability; BSF killed 900 Indians and Bengladeshis on border and no soldier has been prosecuted; women violence and rape cases are on rise; hundreds of thousands do not get drugs for pain relief; India’s reluctance at UNSC and HRC to voice concerns on Human Rights violations in other countries; and the US and EU privately urge India to improve its human rights record but in public remain silent, which shows world community’s duplicity over a grave Human Rights issue. But when it comes to the issue of Balochsitan, the US Senate’s subcommittee by design highlights the HR issue in Balochistan and calls for its independence. The question is why do they ignore when the Indians cross all limits in the occupied Kashmir or against the minorities across India, and why they come out with all their guns open against Pakistan? Isn’t it a matter of vested interests, and nothing else? ABUL HASAN SYED Rawalakot, AJK
Send your letters to: Letters to Editor, Pakistan Today, 4-Shaarey Fatima Jinnah, Lahore, Pakistan. Fax: +92-42-36298302. E-mail: email@example.com. Letters should be addressed to Pakistan Today exclusively.
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A new foreign policy?
Too little Too much
propos of nothing, the army chief said the other day that the defence budget is around 18 percent of the federal budget, not the gargantuan 70 percent that people usually think. Now, none but the criminally hyperbolic - or pathologically innumerate - believe that the defence budget is actually that much of the total budget but the chief’s 18-is-less-than-70 argument is as solid as tautologies come. Eighteen percent is a large chunk. Too much for a poor country to be spending on toys for the boys. This is taking the statement at face value. This is not mentioning the fact that certain expenditures that should have been a part of the defence budget are not officially brushed under that head. The military pensions, for instance, have been counted in the civil budget since the Musharraf years. This is also not arguing for the fact that the defence expenditure’s proportion should not be calculated in comparison to the total outlay but in comparison to the total disposable income i.e. what the exchequer is left with after it sets aside money for debt servicing. The measly eighteen becomes a much larger percentage when viewed from that, more rational, lens. More distressing than the huge budget is the fact that it is not subject to the scrutiny other expenditure is. After much brouhaha, the various heads within the defence budget were also displayed as a part of the finance bill for the fiscal year 2011-12. But that doesn’t really cut it, does it? Each division within the federal government has a principal accounting officer, a post held ex-officio by the divisions’ federal secretary. This is in addition to the other accounting personnel that the latter heads. Then there is the external scrutiny by the audits and accounts service, the gamut of the public procurement regulations and what have you. The minute the press gets wind of any misappropriation, the concerned standing committee can order not just a sitting minister or his federal secretary but any officer down the scale to appear in front of it. All that is missing in the armed forces because of strong “internal accountability.” If generals at the Pentagon can appear before junior civil bureaucrats, what to speak of congressmen, if war heroes in military juggernaut Israel can be called up to explain something in the committees of the Knesset, what ails us? But in no way this means that we don’t have to increase our budget under this security paradigm, sheer imbalance with the Indian armed forces and the Afghanistan issue being the main contributory factors. Nevertheless, it won’t hurt to change our present security paradigm for a better and more cost-efficient one. Perhaps when there is an actual audit of skills, preparedness and protocols, we can find ways of maintaining the same level in the aforementioned at a much lower cost.
Tip of the iceberg Many still missing
even prisoners in the custody of ISI and MI were finally produced in the Supreme Court. Picked up more than a year and a half back, four of the original 11 died in custody. The seven survivors looked frail and unable to talk or walk properly. The apex court ordered a full medical examination and filing of reports about their health every four days. The court also directed not to shift the prisoners to the Parachinar internment centre so long as the matter remained pending before it. The measures were badly needed. They were, however, no more than palliatives. While acts of terrorism must not be condoned, the accused have to be treated as innocent till pronounced guilty by a court. The arrests have to be made lawfully and only by those authorised to do so. Those in custody have to be treated in accordance with law. The requirements are being widely violated as numerous media reports indicate. The present case is just a tip of the iceberg. In Balochistan, there have been scores, if not hundreds, of cases of forced disappearances. Dead bodies bearing signs of torture are found on the roadside almost every other week. On Monday, the bullet-ridden body of BRP leader Sangat Sana, who was reported to have been taken away by the agencies two years back, was discovered near Turbat. This is an utter violation of the constitution which ensures freedom of life, the basic most human right, for every citizen. The credit goes to the SC to have recovered numerous missing persons. What has not been done so far is to affix the responsibility and bring to law those who ordered the disappearances, torture and custodial killings. The scale of disappearances and suspected custodial killings creates a perception of the illegal acts being conducted as a well thought out policy. There is a need on the part of the SC to find out and make accountable those responsible, irrespective of their position. Rule of law allows no exceptions. Unless this happens justice would not be seen to have been done.
Dedicated to the legacy of the late Hameed Nizami
Arif Nizami Editor
Lahore – Ph: 042-36298305-10 Fax: 042-36298302 Karachi – Ph: 021-34330811-3 Fax: 021-34330900 Islamabad – Ph: 051-2287414-6 Fax: 051-2287417 Web: www.pakistantoday.com.pk Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Our old one doesn’t seem to be working…
espite multiple problems in the domestic context, the federal government is endeavouring to expand its foreign policy options against the backdrop of the changing regional situation. Pakistan’s Foreign Minister recently visited Moscow for exploring new economic and diplomacy options. In January, the 7th session of Pakistan-Russia Consultative Group was held in Moscow. In 2011, President Zardari visited Moscow for the SCO summit conference and the army chief also undertook a visit to Russia in the same year. Myanmar’s air force chief visited Pakistan in January and President Zardari visited that country later that month. Prime Minister Yousaf Raza Gilani visited Qatar this month and participated in the World Economic Forum at Davos in the last week of January. President Mahinda Rajapaksa visited Islamabad on February 10-12. There have been several exchange visit with Afghanistan and Iran during the last three months, including the visit of Pakistan’s Foreign Minister to Kabul (February) and Iran’s Vice President to Islamabad. President Karzai of Afghanistan and President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad of Iran By Dr Hasan Askari Rizvi are visiting Islamabad on February 16-17 for the third tripartite meeting of the heads of state of Afghanistan, Iran and Pakistan. There has been a significant improvement of relations with India, including Pakistan’s decision to grant India the MFN status. An Indian trade fair was held in Lahore on February 11-13, and India’s commerce minister came to Pakistan with a large delegation of business and trade people. With China, Pakistan’s interaction goes on unabated with highlevel cultural exchanges. Pakistan’s army chief visited China in January 2012. Pakistan assumed a seat in the UN Secretary Council as a non-permanent member on January 1, 2012 for two years. The current activism does not necessarily offer quick solutions to Pakistan’s problems in the re-
gional context. This is partly because its internal economic and political troubles limit its foreign policy options and partly due to absence of a long-term thinking on how to cope with security related issues, especially the American action in Abbottabad (May 2, 2011), the attack on the Mehran Naval Base in Karachi (May), and American/NATO attack on Pakistani checkposts (November). These three incidents reflected negatively on the capacity of the three services of the military to cope with a swift and dare-devil security operation. The military faced sharp domestic criticism of security lapses in these incidents. The military and intelligence establishment decided to shift the focus of internal debate in Pakistan from its criticism to external intervention and violation of Pakistan’s sovereignty. It used its linkages with the media and the Islamists and political far-right for this purpose. The Islamist-militant and sectarian groups jumped into action because the military’s desired discourse fitted well with their anti-American and anti-India discourse. The Pakistan Defence Council, a conglomerate of Islamist-militant and sectarian and political far-right organisations, held well-attended public meetings in different cities, adopting a pro-military and anti-US and anti-India disposition. The sovereignty argument and antiAmericanism helped to meet the immediate needs of Pakistan’s security establishment for deflecting internal criticism and showing that the US was unpopular in Pakistan From the long-term foreign policy and security perspective, the reactivated Islamicmilitant and sectarian groups pose serious challenge to the civilian government and the military establishment. Whenever Pakistan attempts to revive its relations with the US and allows land transit of supplies to US/NATO troops in Afghanistan, these groups will oppose it through street protests. Pakistan’s official circles insist that the transit facilities have caused massive damage to Pakistan’s road network. In this way, Pakistan’s foreign policy and security establishment has pushed itself in a corner to such an extent that it will find it difficult to convince the people at large about the resumption of land transit facilities to the US. Pakistan needs to re-articulate its relations with the US and Afghanistan if it wants to be involved in their dialogue with the Taliban groups. These countries are also seeking out Pakistan in order to secure the cooperation of the Taliban leadership based in Pakistan. It is not clear if Pakistan wants to
extend such cooperation especially when it refuses to admit that some senior Afghan Taliban are based in Pakistan. Pakistan faces another problem. The Afghan Taliban leaders have laid down some conditions for the dialogue process that show their distrust of Pakistan. This also limits the role that Pakistan can play in the dialogue process. This makes it important for Pakistan to improve relations with Afghanistan and Pakistan to stay in the dialogue loop. It seems that Pakistan and Afghanistan are now taking measured steps to normalise their relations. This is a positive development because they need to work together as the US/NATO troops pull out. However, a streak of anti-Pakistani sentiments will persist in the official Afghan circles which will cause periodic crises in their bilateral relations. On the Pakistani side, the fear of an expanded Indian role in Afghanistan and Indian support to Baloch dissidents will haunt Pakistan’s Afghanistan policy. Pakistan should play its trade and economic cards in a realistic manner rather than seeking the advancement of its military dominated power agenda in Afghanistan. There is a need for Pakistan’s security establishment to make a dispassionate review of its Afghan policy so that it is not left alone in the politics of power and influence in post-withdrawal Afghanistan. One positive development is the effort on the part of the Pakistan government, backed by the military, to normalise relations with India and reduce tensions on the PakistanIndia border. The prospects of improved India-Pakistan trade and economic interaction will be beneficial to Pakistan’s economy and it will also enable Pakistan’s security managers to devote more attention to the security issues relating to the tribal areas and the Pakistan-Afghanistan border. Pakistan’s efforts to cultivate China and Russia widen the scope of its foreign policy. Pakistan can continue to rely on China for wide ranging support. However, China cannot be a substitute for the US, given the multifaceted interaction between the US and Pakistan at the official and non-official levels. One wonders if China wants to be entangled in politics of Pakistan-US relations. China and Russia share with the US concerns about Pakistan’s internal coherence and stability. These countries expect Pakistan to contain Islamic militancy that overflows its territorial boundaries.
The writer is an independent political and defence analyst.
The Karachi literature festival Literary soup for the intellectual soul
By Ali Aftab Saeed
have an announcement to make: I am officially an intellectual now. Last week, I was given an air ticket (and hotel stay) to attend the Karachi Literature Festival; isn’t this the ultimate criterion? The festival had a host of literary people who have dedicated their entire lives to reading, writing, and excelling in their respective fields buried under piles of paper and books. When my friend Zeeshan Hussain came to know that I was invited, he wondered why people like Intizar Hussain and Dr Mubarak Ali didn’t think of producing a song and skidding their way into the world of intellect. It could have saved them a lot of tattered books and paper cuts. I am tempted to ring up Dr Hasan Askari Rizvi to apologise
each time my article is published in Pakistan Today on the same page as his. Even this requires a lot of courage, which I most definitely lack. I don’t criticise these new TV anchors anymore, who have suddenly acquired the status of godfathers of journalism. This is how it is in media and it seems to work fine for me. At the festival, I also represented Beygairat Brigade in a session with Nadeem F Paracha (the moderator) and Saad Haroon. The session was on satire, on which Saad spoke very well; and since I didn’t have too much to say on the academic aspects of the art form, I moulded it into a discussion on political satire with the help of the moderator. By the time it ended, Paracha was able to conclude that KLF could very well stand for the Karachi Liberation Front. The political satirists should really thank God that our politicians are such a corrupt and incompetent bunch; otherwise we wouldn’t have a job. What other options are there? The spoof of a High Court judge dancing on a catchy Bollywood number – perish the thought – is unthinkable, as it would be tantamount to ridiculing the entire judicial structure. The conscientious army generals don’t give us the chance
either because they never do anything that we can make fun of. Mullahs work under direct orders of God; and therefore who are we to make fun of them! As for the civil bureaucracy, whenever I have come across them I have always found them earnestly discussing the issues of this country. How can one imagine making fun of a class who has solemnly dedicated its very existence to empathising with this country and its people? Journalists are of course the heroic class which has the hardest job of all: not only does the public look at them to make sure the country stays intact, it is also their job to set the moral standards of the nation. In view of the above, I sincerely hope that our politicians remain dishonest, corrupt and incompetent – and more importantly, tolerant of being made fun of – and that Veena Malik never loses her youth, brains, and beauty. One of the guests at the festival expressed her concern about my getting hurt (or worse), or about my potentially succumbing to the lure of money (in other words, being bought). I told her that I myself feared the former, but the latter I deeply wished for. Is some rich guy reading this? I repeat: Is some rich guy reading? All those who don’t have my bank
details can contact me via phone, Facebook or Twitter. If you want to buy me but can’t afford to pay in cash, I also accept mobile top ups, restaurant coupons and concert passes (if one is held, that is). After spending two days inside the literary cocoon, my friend Bilal, literature teacher at LUMS, who was also one of the moderators at the KLF, showed me around Karachi the next day. This included one of those areas where up until recently, massacres had continued for months. I expressed my amazement at the ordinary folks managing to get through such long-drawn chaos. He told me that the mobs worked according to a strategically devised time plan: they usually started the fights after Maghrib prayers and busied themselves till Fajr. People could go to their offices, and children to their schools, because the mobs knew that people might come out and take the matter in their own hands if not allowed to function at all. As one would expect, there’s indeed a lot of method to the madness in Karachi. Another case in point: the peace prevailing there now, as if somebody has flicked the switch off. The writer is a member of the band Beygairat Brigade.
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The iranian nuclear crisis Ahmadis, leprosy and plague What is it about a Shezan juice box that makes it so infectious?
And Israel’s deadly diplomacy
By Shaukat Umer
nalyses of the events surrounding the Iranian nuclear crisis have tended to focus on the military dimension to the exclusion of the crafty Israeli diplomatic manoeuvrings aimed at putting Iran in an untenable position vis-à-vis the international community. It has skilfully exploited global concerns over Iran’s nuclear ambitions to trigger telling blows on its economy and international standing. First, despite the absence of tangible evidence from the IAEA or any other credible source, the world seems to have concluded that Iran is on the verge of acquiring nuclear weapons. Even the pliant head of the Agency has not made any such assertion yet a whole range of punitive actions have been unleashed against Iran. Rarely has a nation been penalised so heavily on the basis of so little evidence. A smoothly orchestrated media campaign supplemented with well timed leaks has convinced many of Iran’s guilt. Will such a verdict stand in any impartial court of law? After having secured the presumption of guilt, Israeli diplomacy has adroitly manipulated the fallout. During the past several months the international media has been fed, in a cleverly timed sequence, news bites about Israel’s preparations for a military strike against Iran’s nuclear facilities. These threats have been cleverly modulated with an eye on the evolving dynamics of the American election year where presidential hopefuls are outbidding each other to proclaim solidarity with the threatened Jewish state. Having succeeded, long ago, in equating, in the American political con-
sciousness, criticism of Israel with anti Semitism Israel is now poised to play its diplomatic trump card. The west is strongly averse to an Israeli military strike against Iran given the incalculable consequences that are likely to ensue. It may well ignite a wider conflict which could take any direction including the unravelling of the current strategic configuration in the Middle East. It is this western aversion to another gulf war that Israel has so skilfully exploited. Recently Secretary of Defense Leon Panetta suggested, clearly on Israeli prompting, that Israel was readying itself to strike Iran before it entered the “immunity zone” where nuclear materials and facilities could be transferred to secret locations. At around the same time, Israeli officials had let it be known that the Americans will not be notified in advance of any attack on Iran’s nuclear facilities. The west has reacted to these threats by imposing debilitating sanctions against Iran basically to pre-empt the much vaunted Israeli assault. President Obama has prohibited any international dealings with the Iranian Central Bank entailing severe American penalties for the violators. The European Union has imposed a staggered oil embargo against Iranian oil imports under which fresh oil contracts have been proscribed whereas the existing contracts would be allowed to run till July 1, 2012. By that date, all oil shipments to the Union would cease. Already Japan and South Korea, major non European importers of Iranian crude are looking for alternate sources of supply mostly from Saudi Arabia which has agreed to enhance its production by 2 million barrels per day. Libya and Iraq, their oil industry largely controlled by Western companies, are likely to make up for the balance of the shortfall. Reportedly China and surprisingly India have decided to stay firm even though a senior Chinese official had recently visited the Gulf countries to asses the possibility of tapping their supplies in the event that became necessary.
The Iranian economy is critically dependent on oil income. A sizeable cut in this revenue would place unsustainable strains on the economy and the Iranian regime. Ayatollah Khamenei, the Supreme Leader, has threatened to block the Straits of Hormuz if the Iranian oil exports are interrupted. This is precisely what Israel wants. Hormuz is an international waterway providing passage to a sizeable chunk of global oil trade. Forcible closure of this universally recognised trading artery would be a grave violation of international law. The international community would then be well within its right to take all necessary measures, possibly with Security Council authorisation, otherwise under international maritime law to enforce the lifting of the blockade. The responsibility for the ensuing conflict will then be pinned entirely on Iran which by the act of blockade would have transformed itself into an aggressor from a victim. The destruction of Iran’s nuclear assets in the course of the conflict, though unrelated to its cause, would trigger much less outrage than an unprovoked Israeli attack. It is this train of events which Iran must avoid at all costs. Friends of Iran like Russia, China, India and Pakistan must jointly dissuade Iran from blocking Hormuz. They must also endeavour to persuade Iran to demonstrate flexibility in its nuclear stance to obstruct Israeli ability, so far unchecked, to play on western fears and manipulate the enormous well of sympathy that it enjoys amongst their populations. As a starting point Iran could signal its readiness to place its entire nuclear stock under IAEA safeguards an obligation to which Iran is committed as a party to the Non-Proliferation Treaty. Fulfilment of freely assumed contractual obligations should not be construed as diminution of one’s sovereignty. The writer is Pakistan’s former Ambassador to the United Nations and European Union. He can be contacted at email@example.com
team of lawyers will raid canteens to cleanse Lahore’s courts of a juice drink produced by a company that is owned partly by members of the marginalised Ahmadiyya community. Lahore Bar Association banned Shezan juice in a unanimous vote this week. The bar’s president – who was elected in January with the backing of Tehreek-eInsaaf’s Hamid Khan and drew public ire over videos that show him celebrating his success with a distasteful Mujra performance on a vulgar Bollywood song Sheila ki Jawani – said stern action would be taken against retailers who are caught selling the product. There is more to this decision than just the economics. The usual soft-drink alternatives to Shezan are popularly believed to be owned by conspiring Jews. But they were not banned. What is it about a Shezan juice box that makes it so infectious that so many of us are concerned it will disrupt our social order and must be banned? “O the drinker (sic) of Shezan! Do not invite God’s wrath upon you by drinking Shezan,” says a popular poster that calls for a boycott of the Mango juice drink. “Do not take this obnoxious drink of the apostates lest you suffer from any disease and you lose the pleasures of life.” “I feel like a leper,” an Ahmadi remarked. “I forbid you to ever enter churches, or go into a market, or By Harris Bin Munawar a mill, or a bakehouse, or into any assemblies of people,” a priest would tell lepers in ritual ceremonies of seclusion in the 12th and 13th century in Europe. Leprosy was seen as an infection associated with sin. “Also, I forbid you to ever wash your hands or even any of your belongings in spring or stream of water of any kind.” In his book Discipline and Punish, Michel Foucault compares medieval Europe’s response to plague with that to leprosy. The response to leprosy was separation, but that to the plague was segmentation. Leprosy was a visible disorder that could be removed. Plague was invisible. The boundary between order and disorder was blurred, and therefore, every individual needed to be observed. Ahmadis in Pakistan have been treated as both lepers and plague victims. A traditional physician accused of being an Ahmadi was expelled from Haripur district in
Man bites Dog
November. Apparently, the police agreed to the arrangement to avoid violence. But in Rawalpindi earlier this month, religious groups including those who are not allowed to operate under Pakistani law organised a protest against Ahmadis to pressure the government to stop them from worshipping because they said it was a violation of Pakistani law. The Pakistani state has predominantly taken the second approach. Ahmadis look and act like other Muslims and have similar names, and that is what makes most religious leaders uncomfortable. The state responded by making laws that prohibit the minority sect from acting like Muslims, and ensured all Ahmadis are clearly marked as Ahmadis in a state database of citizens, and even on their passports. Pakistan is the land of the pure, and will stay that way as long as any impurities it contains are clearly marked. That way they don’t slip into the mainstream and infect the entire society. Terrorist groups in Pakistan kill more Shia and Barelvi Muslims than Christians. It looks like their concerns are less religious and more related to modern notions of nationhood, census and taxonomy. “The first conspiracy was hatched against Pakistan when Sir Zafarullah Khan was made foreign minister,” popular leader Nawaz Sharif’s son-in-law told a meeting of his party in Lala Musa last week. Like the mythical Greek king Oedipus, a scapegoat is usually a stranger. And that is why he is as likely to be idolised and made into a hero as he is vulnerable to being seen as an impurity that is the root of all problems in the community. Sir Zafarullah was once considered a founding father and hailed for fighting Pakistan’s case for Kashmir in the UN that led to the resolutions conservative Pakistanis want the country to stick to. He had also favoured the Objectives Resolution – a statement of purpose that made Pakistan an Islamic democracy. He did not know the document would eventually become the most powerful legal justification for laws against his own faith. There had been signs. If Sir Zafarullah Khan’s appointment was a conspiracy against Pakistan, it was hatched by our founder, Muhammad Ali Jinnah. At least some religious leaders who opposed Quaid-e-Azam and later became part of anti-Ahmadiyya agitations were certainly looking at things that way. The writer is a media and culture critic and works at The Friday Times. He tweets @paagalinsaan and gets email at firstname.lastname@example.org
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wednesday, 15 February, 2012
Mathira goes topless,
knocks down Veena Malik NEWS DESK AN anyone knock down the ‘Veena Malik Posing Nude’ for FHM magazine controversy? It seems our very own version of Paris Hilton, Mathira, has done just that. The well known fashion model turned television show host, posed topless with another fashion model Waqas Pathan. Speculationis rife that the photos were shot for the cover-page shoot of a Valentine’s special issue of a Pakistani fashion magazine. However, some sources say the photo-shoot will also serve the purpose of publicising her new television show. It seems that Mathira has
in liMelighT FrAnce: Jean dujardin poses before the screening of his movie ‘les Infideles’. AfP
hit the mark on this one as the provocative photos are already doing the rounds of the internet and igniting fire among the masses. The girl who entertained Pakistani audiences with her morning exercise segment and created massive midnight viewer-ship is no stranger to controversy. Mathira’s nude personal photos were leaked onto the internet a while back. She started her television career from Vibe Tv and gained popularity hosting the programme ‘Love Indicator’. The show invited the public’s questions about dating. She gained notoriety from that show as the show’s content and her demeanour were both slammed by critics. Mathira currently hosts ‘Baji Online’ on Aag TV.
berlIn: Angelina Jolie receives the ‘honorary Award for opposing war and genocide’ for her film ‘In the land of blood and honey’ at the cinema for Peace Awards. AfP
faiz Aman Mela reiterates poets’ revolutionary message LAHORE TAzeeN FATIMA
Unlike last year, the ‘Faiz Aman Mela’ saw people from different walks of life coming together to celebrate the progressive spirit that Faiz Ahmed Faiz fashioned. Not only was the festival a celebration of a deviant tradition that arose in the suffocating milieu of Faiz, but also of the universality of his message. Organised by the left, the event was held at the Baagh-e-Jinnah. The festival started with a mushaira
by Dr Khalid Jaan followed by various revolutionary poets reciting their poems dedicating to the great artistic genius. The highlight of the mushaira was revolutionary poet Baba Najmi’s vigour, translated into a beautiful Punjabi poem called ‘Saada Haq naeen denday jerray’. A general ambiance of rebellion was created as he termed the mainstream political tradition as being in the hands of ‘political goons’. The second part of the festival comprised a musical tribute to Faiz
PhoTo by ZAhRA SyED
The smoke screen is oﬀ,
Ahmed Faiz by the band Laal, Nida Faiz, Rabiah Shehzadi and other musicians that brought the crowd to life with their revolutionary songs. A minute of silence was observed for the 20 workers who died due to the factory collapse last week. A member of the Workers’ Party Pakistan, Hashim Bin Rashid, said it was heartening that the workers looked to Faiz’s poetry for the hope of emancipation and that the festival provided the left to express their sorrow at the unfortunate deaths of the workers. Laal front-man and Communist Mazdoor Kissan Party, Taimur Rahman said while geniuses were cursed and ostracised in their lives, they were applauded when they died only if their contexts and perspectives were disregarded. He added that festivals such as these provided a platform for the left to acknowledge and spread Faiz’s true viewpoint.
MuMBAI: Shah rukh Khan has been battling with it. And he gets routinely hauled up by his children for being unable to curb his nicotine addiction. but it has been more than a year since Aamir Khan quit smoking, and this time he says it is for good. And if there is one thing he has in common with SrK, is that in his case too, it was the constant goading from his children that got him to kick the butt. There was a time when he smoked 40 cigarettes a day. The actor spoke about his several failed attempts and emphasised that this time he would not give in. “never,” he insisted. Talking about what often ate into his resolve to quit smoking, Aamir, who is currently in transit for his forthcoming TV show, said, “whenever my film was about to hit the theatres, I got nervous. And I felt that a cigarette could ease the pressure.” So what triggered the renewed promise this time? Aamir revealed, “honestly, my son Junaid and my daughter were getting very annoyed. Kiran and my mother too were constantly telling me to throw my cigarettes and lighters away. There was this day, January 1, 2011, to be precise, when I decided that ‘enough is enough’. I can say that four people were instrumental.” The actor says that the resolve to kick a harmful habit not only benefits the individual but the family as well. “your family loves you the most, don't they?” the actor added. It also helps that there is only a week's gap between the release of his next and the commencement of ‘dhoom 3’. Aamir is expected to undergo a strict fitness regime for the film, and cigarettes are an absolute no. AGeNCIeS
AhMedAbAd: genelia and ritesh deshmukh pose inside an auto-rickshaw during a promotional event for their film ‘Tere naal love ho gaya’. AfP
london: gillian Anderson and Jessica chastain arrive at the elle Awards. AfP
by fan! an item
MuMBAI: It looks like John Abraham is paying a high price for his popularity among women. he is getting mauled and assaulted by his female fans of late. Perhaps his new ‘officially’ single status has something to do with it. Recently, at an event, a female fan bit his finger! Poor John tried to be polite about it but this time it hurt him bad. Incidentally, this isn’t the first time he has been assaulted this violently. earlier in Jaipur he visited an ATM to withdraw some cash. But word spread that the hunk was in the area and soon there was a mad scramble among his hysterical female fans to meet, greet and touch him. The result was that he emerged with a totally scratched body after the ordeal. John should perhaps consider having an armour in public considering he also had his butt pinched in Toronto some years ago. Well John isn’t the only star who has had to go through fan frenzy. his ex-girlfriend Bipasha is paranoid and won’t go public without her bodyguards as she has been mobbed several times in her career. Amitabh Bahcchan hasn’t been spared either; he had his hand slashed when he shook hands with a fan carrying a blade! Stardom is dangerous business, isn’t it? AGeNCIeS
MuMBAI: looks like ex-lovers ranbir and deepika have done well to put the past behind them. The duo was last seen in los Angeles only last week. Apparently Ayaan Mukherjee has managed to get ex-couple ranbir Kapoor and deepika Padukone back on track, and the actors themselves seem to be comfortable with each other. besides accepting awards from her, the two maintain a dignified approach and have gone on record to say that they are professionals and are looking forward to working with each other. After the break up with Siddharth Mallya, deepika is single again. ranbir, however, we hear is busy patching up with all his exes, including Katrina Kaif. According to a source, deepika and ranbir were spotted together in los Angeles last week. The duo flew back to India separately. There's no doubt ranbir and deepika are friends again but will this friendship turn in to love again? only time will tell. AGeNCIeS
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15 BeRLIN: Christian Bale poses at the photocall for the film ‘The Flowers of War’ at the Berlinale film festival. aFP
Amanda Seyfried ‘grateful’ Sarah Jessica Parker replaced Demi Moore in ‘Lovelace’
Speculation rages over cause of houston’s death
beVerly hIllS: A makeshift memorial to grammy-winning pop legend and actress whitney houston near the beverly hilton hotel. AfP
After Demi Moore had to drop out of ‘Lovelace’ last month, there were many rumours about who would replace her as Gloria Steinem in the biopic about porn star Linda Lovelace. The production finally settled on Sarah Jessica Parker, who agreed to cameo in the film following a personal plea from star Amanda Seyfried. I was like, ‘Where is she? What is she doing?’ So I called her agent and asked, ‘What can we do to get her involved? We have three days. We need her.’ And I emailed her that day and she was on a plane three days later.” Despite her happiness that Parker was able to play the venerable Ms magazine co-founder, Seyfried was saddened by Moore’s departure. “It was a really hard situation because Demi had worked really hard and she was so prepared and so ready and nobody expected her to not be able to do it — she didn’t either.” Seyfried said that Parker is “amazing” in ‘Lovelace,’ which also features a cameo from James Franco as Hugh Hefner.
S fans await autopsy results that may not come for weeks, speculation raged that pop legend Whitney Houston may have died from a lethal cocktail of prescription drugs and alcohol. Houston, who possessed one of the greatest-ever singing voices and sold more than 170 million records, fought a long and public battle with substance abuse after her career and personal life went off the rails. She was found dead on Saturday afternoon, at the age of just 48, in her bathtub in a suite of the Beverly Hilton hotel. Houston’s body was released Monday and the body was to be flown to her native New Jersey for a funeral. Celebrity website TMZ said it had learnt from unnamed “family sources” that the singer died from a lethal combination of prescription drugs and alcohol. A friend who saw Houston on Thursday, two days before her death, told that the superstar seemed “upbeat and joyful” and not apparently under the influence of drugs. But the Los Angeles Times reported that Houston had behaved erratically during an appearance that day. Though she greeted people with a warm smile, she appeared dishevelled, with mismatched clothes and dripping-wet hair. According to the report, the singer flailed her hands frenetically as she spoke, skipped around the ballroom in a
Fahad ties the knot
LOS ANGeLeS: A Swarovski crystal encrusted Golden Collar is on display at the first annual Golden Collar Awards which celebrates “Best Achievement in Acting” by hollywood’s canine actors in film and TV in five categories. aFP
Popular VJ, fashion designer and model Fahad Sheikh has tied the knot withMehreen Atta, the daughter of famous Pakistani singer and artist Shahida Mini. Many famous Pakistani celebrities attended Fahad’s wedding ceremony and wished him a good life and success. The ceremony was also attended by the couple’s close friends. Film star Shaan, fashion model Zille Huma, Ursala, choreographer Papu Samrat, writer Pervaiz Kaleem, film star Bahar Begum and made the wedding a star-studded affair.
A Middlesex University student, Asef Ali Mohammad, who moved to the UK 10 years ago from Pakistan, is amongst an international cast of ten finalists for the 2012 Sony World Photography Awards Student Focus competition. Asef submitted his image of Hazara people in Pakistan. The Hazaras, who live mostly in Afghanistan, Iran and Pakistan, have been subject to persecution, kidnapping and target killings – something Asef wanted to raise awareness of. This year the competition has attracted entries from over 200 institutions across six continents. Asef, from North Finchley, said: “I’m excited about being nominated for such a prestigious award. The whole environment that has shaped up in recent years around photography at Middlesex is fantastic. Each year I’ve seen other students get published in magazines and exhib-
MuMBAI: After winning rave reviews for her performance in ‘ek Main Aur ekk Tu’, Kareena Kapoor might just be making her foray into direction. rumour has it that producer Karan Johar will be offering bebo a film to direct under the dharma Productions banner. Apparently, bebo helped beau Saif Ali Khan on the sets of ‘Agent Vinod’. So much so, that she started taking keen interest in the process of filmmaking on the sets of KJo’s eMAeT. Speaking to a daily, a source said, “Kareena and Karan are like soul siblings. She discusses a lot of ideas with him. And she also got to be a part of the behind-the-scenes team in eMAeT. It was during the shooting that Karan realised how great an aptitude bebo has for cinema. In fact, she gave very crucial tips for revising and improving the script too.” In fact, Kareena’s valuable suggestions were all incorporated in the film. “Karan has asked her to get on board as a formal assistant and then eventually direct a film,” added the source. An impressed director of eMAeT, Shakun batra said, "There were at least five scenes where Kareena felt her character riana was similar to geet in ‘Jab we Met’. She marked those in the script and suggested how we could change them. Throughout the film’s making, Kareena was full of sensible, intelligent suggestions.” well, her grandfather raj Kapoor and father randhir Kapoor have both been good directors and if Kareena does take up direction in the near future, we will know it is her genes talking! AGeNCIeS
childlike fashion and wandered aimlessly about the lobby. In a 2009 interview Houston admitted that she laced her marijuana with rock cocaine. Houston most recently checked into rehab in 2011. Sales of Houston’s records have soared after her sudden death, with ‘I Will Always Love You’ the top seller on iTunes. Houston’s family issued a statement before the Grammy show, saying: “We are devastated by the loss of our beloved Whitney. This is an unimaginable tragedy and we will miss her terribly.”
Valentines Day’ TASHKENT BBC
Lovers in Uzbekistan who used to celebrate Valentine’s Day by hearing pop singer Rayhan sing will have to look for other forms of entertainment this year. Rayhan, a popular singer has given concerts on 14 February for years. But this month the show has been cancelled, along with other events. Instead of Valentine’s Day, the authorities are trying instead to promote the study and appreciation of a local hero, the Moghul emperor Babur, whose birthday falls on 14 February. It is not the first time that the authorities and the state media in particular have taken aim at what they see as damaging Western influences. In the past few weeks there have been several articles attacking foreign soap operas from Mexico and Latin America for being too explicit and for undermining local values and traditions.
Amitabh Bachchan recovering after surgery MUMBAI AGeNCIeS
ited – it sets the bar high, inspires, and gives you something to aim for.” The photographers were asked to take on a role similar to that of a haiku poet and create and submit one image that depicts a ‘fleeting moment’, or ‘the decisive moment’. The ten finalists will take
part in the final competition with the winner announced at the Sony World Photography Awards ceremony at London’s Park Lane Hilton Hotel on 26 April. Students will also have their images will be exhibited as part of World Photo, at Somerset House, London.
Bollywood legend Amitabh Bachchan is recovering from successful abdominal surgery over the weekend, doctors say. The 69-year-old actor, who has a history of abdominal ailments, was operated on in a hospital in Mumbai on Saturday. Bachchan, suffered a near fatal injury during the shooting of an action scene on the set of the film ‘Coolie’ in 1982. Saturday’s surgery lasted for “about two to three hours and everything is normal,” tweeted Abhishek Bachchan. Bachchan is likely to be released early this week if everything is fine, his son said.
India woman leaves home for lack of toilet NEWS DESK A newlywed woman in a village in the Indian state of Madhya Pradesh has won her struggle to have a toilet at her husband’s home. Anita Narre left husband Shivram’s home two days after her marriage in May last year because the house had no toilet. She returned eight days later after Shivram, a daily wage worker, built one with savings and aid from villagers. An NGO announced a $10,000 reward for Mrs Narre for her “brave” decision and forcing her husband to build a toilet.
MuMBAI: It looks like Salman is going to be the next Aamir Khan in the industry. After delivering box office hits in last few years, Salman Khan doesn't want to go wrong when it comes to any of his roles in upcoming films. According to a unit hand from the sets of his upcoming film ‘ek Tha Tiger’, the actor doesn't shy away from giving his suggestions and opinions to director Kabir Khan. Very recently, the actor went on to direct an action sequence too. “There was an action sequence where the actor had to chase villains and beat them up, but Salman suggested that instead him chasing them, villains should run to him and he will beat them up smartly,” revealed a unit hand. director Kabir Khan tried to convince him otherwise but Salman refused to do the scene. he asked the director to rewrite the scene. Finally the director had no option but to change the action sequence according to Salman. The scene was shot according to Salman's suggestion and apparently has turned out perfectly. It is believed that everyone including the director loved it. we hope Salman won't get infamous like Aamir among his directors for being one interfering soul. AGeNCIeS
Salman gets too
interfering for Kabir Khan?
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16 Foreign News
wednesday, 15 February, 2012
Homs battered as civilian plight worsens DAMASCUS
YRIA’S army killed at least six civilians Tuesday in the heaviest shelling of Homs for several days, monitors said, as the international community warned of a humanitarian disaster in the city. The top human rights representative at the United Nations said the world body’s inaction had “emboldened” Syria’s government to unleash overwhelming force against its own civilians. “The failure of the Security Council to agree on firm collective action appears to have emboldened the Syrian government to launch an all-out assault in an effort to crush dissent with overwhelming force,” said Navi Pillay, High Commissioner for Human Rights. The assault has been heaviest in the central city of Homs, which has been under a relentless barrage of heavy
machinegun fire, tank shells, mortars and rocket-propelled grenades for 10 days. “The shelling of the Baba Amr neighbourhood began at dawn and is the most intense in five days,” Rami Abdel Rahman of the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said Tuesday. “Two rockets are falling a minute on average,” the head of the Britain-based monitoring group told AFP by telephone, citing activists on the ground. “Six civilians died in the continuous shelling of Baba Amr neighbourhood this morning,” the Observatory said later in an emailed statement. A video uploaded to YouTube by activists showed a powerful blast striking what they said was Baba Amr, sending flames shooting into the sky and a plume of black smoke up over the rebel stronghold. Hadi Abdullah of the General Commission of the Syrian Revolution, an opposition activist group, said the shelling of Baba Amr was extremely heavy.
‘China will not protect Syrian govt’ BEIJING AFP
China will not protect the regime of Syria’s President Bashar al-Assad, Premier Wen Jiabao said Tuesday, after Beijing drew international ire for vetoing a UN resolution on the country. Wen’s comments, during an EU-China summit, came after the United Nations’ top human rights representative said the world body’s inaction had “emboldened” the Syrian government to use overwhelming force against its own civilians. “China will absolutely not protect any party, including the government in Syria,” Wen told reporters in Beijing. He added that the priority now was to “prevent war and
chaos” in the violence-hit country. China and Russia have faced a barrage of criticism for blocking a UN Security Council resolution condemning the bloody crackdown on protests in Syria, including from Arab nations with which Beijing normally has good ties. On Tuesday, Syrian troops battered Homs in some of the heaviest shelling for days in the flashpoint city, a monitoring group said, as the international community warned of a humanitarian disaster. The United States called the rare double veto a “travesty”, while one Syrian opposition group said it had handed Assad’s regime a “licence to kill”. Since the crackdown was launched less than a year ago, more than 6,000 people have been killed, monitors say.
Second brazilian journalist killed in less than a week RIO DE JANEIRO AFP
A Brazilian reporter has been shot dead by unknown assailants, the second journalist in less than two weeks to be gunned down in the South American country. Paulo Rodrigues, editor of the Mercosul News website, died in Ponta Para, in the southern Mato Grosso do Sul state, at around 11:30 pm (0230 GMT Monday) after being shot several times by two men on a motorcycle, the website said. “Initial reports indicate that the crime against the journalist could be politically motivated, but police do not rule out other theories,” it said. Rodrigues, 51, was also the editor of the Jornal da Praca newspaper. The state’s journalist syndicate called on authorities to “quickly move to insure that the crime is solved and the guilty parties are punished.” Last week Mario Lopes, 50, the editor of the website Vassouras na net, which criticized local politicians, judges and police, was shot dead with his girlfriend in the state of Rio de Janeiro.
Australian parliament erupts on Maldives ‘coup’ question SYDNEY AFP
JAKARTA: A scuffle breaks out in a crowd of Indonesian protesters during a demonstration against the hardline Muslim group Front Pembela Indonesia (FPI) or the Islamic Defender Front on Tuesday. AfP
Indonesians protest Muslim radicals JAKARTA AFP
Some 200 Indonesians converged on a Jakarta square on Tuesday to denounce an Islamic vigilante group known for its armed attacks on minorities and moderates. Public anger against the Islamic Defenders Front (FPI), which has launched a series of attacks since 2000 against targets including the US embassy and nightclubs, has been on the rise. “We are not calling for FPI to be disbanded. We only demand that justice be enforced against the violence the group has committed,” said Tunggal Pawestri, spokeswoman of a movement calling itself FPI-Free Indonesia.
Kuwait forms new cabinet with change in oil, defence KUWAIT CITY AFP
Kuwait’s Emir Sheikh Sabah al-Ahmad alSabah named a new cabinet on Tuesday with 10 new faces, including the oil and defence ministers, and no women, despite objections from the opposition. Hani Hussein, a former chief executive officer of the national oil conglomerate Kuwait Petroleum Corp, was appointed oil minister, replacing Mohammad al-Baseeri.
Sudanese air strike hits South Sudan, breaking pact: army JUBA
Sarkozy to throw hat in election ring PARIS AFP
Sudanese warplanes dropped several bombs wounding four soldiers in a contested area claimed by South Sudan, breaking a fresh non-aggression pact between the two sides, Juba’s army spokesman said Tuesday. “Sudanese Armed Forces airplanes bombed the Jau area in Unity state on Sunday, wounding four of our soldiers,” South Sudanese army spokesman Philip Aguer told AFP. South Sudan — which declared independence from former civil war enemies in north Sudan in July — has accused Khartoum of carrying out several bombing raids in frontier regions of its territory, claims denied by the northern army. The bombings took place in oil-rich areas along the disputed border with the rump state of Sudan, which both sides claim as theirs. The Jau area has seen several bombings in recent months as well as fighting between the two sides. “There were several bombs launched from Antonov aircraft,” Aguer said. The region borders Sudan’s Southern Kordofan state where rebels — once part of the ex-guerrilla turned official South Sudanese army — are battling the Khar-
Australia’s parliament erupted in laughter on Tuesday when discussing a “coup” in the Maldives, as the opposition attempted to compare the situation to how Prime Minister Julia Gillard seized power. Gillard’s government has been rocked by rumblings that the man she deposed in a Labor Party room coup in 2010 to become leader, Kevin Rudd, may challenge her for the leadership to salvage the party’s hopes of staying in office. The issue flared after claims were aired overnight that Gillard’s office prepared an acceptance speech two weeks before Rudd was deposed, and the opposition seized on the Maldives situation to bring it up in parliament. “While the new leader of the Maldives says he did not bring about the coup, reports have surfaced that he was involved in coup preparations that began weeks earlier,” said opposition foreign affairs spokeswoman Julie Bishop. “Does the foreign minister agree that the new leader should tell the full truth about his involvement in the coup?” The pointed question drew roars of laughter from the opposition benches, but a stony-faced Rudd stood his ground, reminding lawmakers who were enjoying the comparison that much was at stake in the Maldives.
toum government forces. Sudan and South Sudan signed a non-aggression pact late Friday over the disputed border in the Ethiopian capital Addis Ababa, a move praised by UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon. However, Aguer said the latest bombings showed the deal had not been taken seriously by Khartoum. “Nothing has changed, it is business as usual for them,” Aguer said. Gideon Gatpan, minister of information for Unity state, confirmed there had been “several bombings” on Sunday in the Jau area. According to the pact, the two sides agreed to “respect each
other’s sovereignty and territorial integrity” and to “refrain from launching any attack, including bombardment.” Border tensions have mounted since South Sudan split from Sudan in July, becoming the world’s newest nation. South Sudan took three quarters of Sudan’s oil when it gained independence, but all pipeline and export facilities are controlled by the north.Last month, the South halted oil production — accounting for 98 percent of government revenue — after Juba accused Khartoum of stealing $815 million worth of crude oil.
French President Nicolas Sarkozy will announce his bid for re-election on Wednesday, setting the stage for what he hopes will be a dramatic comeback against his poll-leading Socialist rival, a source in his office said. With only 10 weeks before the first round of the presidential vote on April 22, right-wing Sarkozy is lagging in the polls, struggling with image problems and burdened with a moribund economy. But his team is confident that once officially in the race Sarkozy, a seasoned and charismatic campaigner, will be able to quickly make up ground on Socialist frontrunner Francois Hollande. Elysee sources said he would officially confirm his candidacy on TF1 television in its 1900 GMT news show Wednesday and will announce that Ecology Minister Nathalie Kosciusko-Morizet will be his campaign spokeswoman. Henri Guaino, Sarkozy’s special advisor, will be the campaign’s speechwriter and Sarkozy was to hold his first major election rally Thursday in the Alpine town of Annecy. Sarkozy has been laying the groundwork for his run in the last several weeks — portraying himself as a defender of traditional values and a steady hand in dealing with the European economic crisis.
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israel diplomat attack by ‘well-trained’ operative: india NEW DELHI AFP
A bomb blast that badly wounded an Israeli diplomat in New Delhi was a terrorist attack by a highly-trained operative, the Indian government said Tuesday, as Israel accused Iran of being responsible. The injured female diplomat was described by doctors as stable following overnight surgery to remove shrapnel from her spine after the attack, in which a motorcyclist planted a suspected magnetic bomb on her car. “The explosion according to eyewitnesses happened within seconds of the device being planted,” Home Minister P. Chidambaram told reporters in Delhi. “It is quite clear that a very well-trained person carried out this attack.” “One has to progress on the basis that it was a terrorist attack,” he said, adding “we are not pointing our finger at any group or organisation.” In Washington, US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton condemned Monday’s attack in India and an attempted bombing in Georgia in the “strongest possible terms” but the White House reserved judgment on who was responsible. Israel said it was in no doubt about whom to blame after the embassy car in New Delhi exploded in a ball of flames, while police defused an explosive fixed to another Israeli embassy vehicle in the Georgian capital Tbilisi.
Bahrain police disperse protests on uprising anniversary DUBAI AFP
Bahraini police dispersed protesters who made several attempts Tuesday to mark the anniversary of last year’s uprising by marching to the site of the protest that was brutally crushed, witnesses said. Several protests took off from Shiite villages on the outskirts of Manama, with youth trying to reach the capital’s former Pearl Square, where democracy demonstrators camped for a month last year before being forcefully driven out. Protesters marched from Sanabis, Deih and Jidhafs, which lie few kilometres (miles) west of Manama, despite police warning that protests would be dispersed, witnesses said. “Down with (King) Hamad!” they chanted, referring to the Sunni monarch whose Al-Khalifa has ruled the Shiite-majority Gulf kingdom since the 18th century. The Coalition of the Youth of February 14th Revolution, a hardline group that operates apart from the political opposition led by Al-Wefaq, declared Tuesday the day to return to the square that was razed after the mid-March crackdown. “All of us are returning” to the square, read a call for protest posted on its Facebook page, designating 6:40 am (0340 GMT) as the starting time. The coalition posted footage of youth dressed in white Islamic death shrouds running through some alleys claiming they were heading to the square that is heavily protected by security forces.
CAIRO: An egyptian lies in a mock grave dug in Tahrir square which are symbolically intended for former President hosni Mubarak and members of the ruling military council on Tuesday. AfP
Iran to unveil nuclear ‘achievements’ today TEHRAN
RANIAN President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad is to unveil several unspecified nuclear “achievements” on Wednesday, his government’s website said. “Several completed nuclear projects will be unveiled tomorrow in the presence of the president,” the official website said on Tuesday. “Experts believe these achievements will show the world the extraordinary capability and knowledge of Iranians.” It added that the progress will underline Iran’s scientific adherence to “nuclear power for all and nuclear weapons for none,” the website said. The announcement confirmed a vow made by Ahmadinejad on Saturday to inaugurate “important nuclear projects” within “days,” in a speech marking the anniversary of Iran’s 1979 Islamic revolution. Iran’s progress in its nuclear programme has deeply unsettled the West and Israel, which see it masking a drive for atomic weapons. A report by the UN nuclear watchdog in November also expressed strong suspicions in that sense. Tehran, though, has repeatedly said its nuclear activities are exclusively peaceful in nature. The international showdown over Iran’s nuclear programme has deepened in recent months, with the United States and the European Union slapping unprecedentedly tough economic sanctions on the Islamic republic to pressure it to halt its activities.
‘Decision’ on iran imminent, says Russian army chief MOSCOW AFP
The head of Russia’s army said Tuesday he expected a “decision” on Iran to be taken by Western powers this summer in response to Tehran’s disputed nuclear programme. “Iran, of course, is a sore spot. Some sort of decision on it should be taken soon. It will probably be taken closer to the summer,” Chief of Staff General Nikolai Makarov was quoted as saying by the RIA Novosti news agency. Makarov provided no further comment
and it was not immediately clear if he was referring to possible military action or future sanctions. Russia has backed four rounds of United Nations sanctions against Iran over its nuclear programme amid growing international concern that it was pursuing military aims. But Moscow has sternly warned against using military action. Russia last month accused Western powers of trying to “suffocate” the Iranian economy and incite popular discontent with new sanctions such as the impending oil embargo by EU states.
man killed planting bomb in Yemen polling booth ADEN AFP
A man was killed Tuesday when a bomb exploded as he was planting it in a polling booth in Yemen’s southern city of Aden, a security official said, amid rising tension ahead of presidential elections next week. “An unknown man trying to plant an explosive device in a polling booth in the neighbourhood of Crater... was killed when it exploded,” the official said, requesting anonymity. Security forces were swiftly de-
ployed across Crater, especially near election committees’ headquarters, the official told AFP. “We cannot accuse anyone yet but the extremist factions of the (separatist) Southern Movement led by (Yemen Socialist Party’s former leader) Ali Salem al-Baidh are trying to hamper the elections,” he said. Further east, anti-election gunmen from the Southern Movement besieged a polling booth in the town of Mayfaa in the southeastern province of Shabwa, local officials there told AFP. The gunmen demanded that members of the elec-
toral committee, who are supported by armed tribesmen, leave the polling booth, the officials said, adding that negotiations to resolve the situation were continuing Tuesday afternoon. Activists from the Southern Movement who say the February 21 election fails to meet their aspirations for autonomy or southern independence, have been campaigning for a boycott of the election, while Baidh’s followers openly call for actions to prevent the poll from taking place at all. The elections are taking place under
a Gulf-brokered power transfer deal under which President Ali Abdullah Saleh agreed to hand power to his deputy, Abdrabuh Mansur Hadi, in return for immunity from prosecution for himself and his aides. Activists have posted banners across Aden reading: “To all free southerners: The polls must not take place.” Late on Monday, members of the Southern Movement erected the flag of the formerly independent South Yemen and tore down Hadi’s pictures in Khor Maksar in Aden, an AFP correspondent reported.
India won’t censor social media: minister MUMBAI AFP
India does not intend to censor online social networks such as Facebook, a minister said Tuesday, but he demanded that they obey the same rules governing the press and other media. “I want to say once and for all, without any obfuscation, no government in India will ever censor social media,” Telecoms Minister Kapil Sibal said at an IT summit in Mumbai. “I never wanted to censor social media and no government wants to do so. But like the print and electronic media, they have to obey the laws of the country,” Sibal told the gathering. Sibal held a number of meetings with leading Internet companies late last year in which he asked about the possibility of checking content before it is posted online by users. The minister was said to have shown Internet executives examples of obscene images found on the Internet that risked offending Muslims or defaming politicians, including the boss of the ruling Congress party, Sonia Gandhi. “The media reported that I had said I wanted to prescreen the content on social media. I have never even heard the word pre-screen,” he said at the summit. Since these meetings, 19 Internet firms including Google, Yahoo! and Facebook have been targeted in criminal and civil cases lodged in lower New Delhi courts, holding them responsible for content posted by users of their platforms.
S. Korean woman commits suicide after dog’s death SEOUL AFP
A South Korean woman apparently mourning the death of her pet dog has committed suicide after leaving a note requesting she be buried with the animal, police said Tuesday. The 25-year-old surnamed Kim was found dead at her home in the southern city of Busan on Monday after apparently burning coal briquettes in the bathroom, a Busan police official told AFP on condition of anonymity. Kim was clutching the dead dog when a co-worker found her body in the bathroom, whose windows and door were sealed with tape, he said, adding the cause of death was likely carbon monoxide poisoning. Kim, who had owned the dog for the past four years, had not been to work since Thursday. The police official said she left a suicide note saying she wanted to be with the dog and to be buried with it.
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Ivanovic advances in doha Page 21
Younus confident Pakistan will bounce back ABU DHABI
xPERIENCED batsman Younus Khan hopes Pakistan do not panic and try their best to bounce back against a resurgent England in the second day-night international on Wednesday. England on Monday took the first of four one-day matches by a convincing 130-run margin after Pakistan were bowled out for just 130, with paceman Steven Finn taking a career-best 4-34. Skipper Alastair Cook had hit his highest one-day score of 137 to guide England to a challenging 260-7, a target Younus said Pakistan should have achieved. "I hope there is no panic," said Younus. "We should not panic because we have not batted badly in the last four five matches, so we need to try our best and put Monday's performance behind us." Pakistan never recovered after Finn claimed their top four batsmen in just 29 balls and Younus believes that lack of partnerships let the team down. "England had a very good partnership between Cook and (Ravi) Bopara and that helped them," he said of the 131-run third wicket stand. "It wasn't a difficult chase but we failed to put up a reasonable stand." Off-spinner Saeed Ajmal, who took 24 wickets in the preceding 3-0 Test series win, grabbed a career-best 5-43 but England still managed a challenging total. "We couldn't cash on the two wickets by (Shahid) Afridi but still we should have got that total. England bowled the first 10 overs well, they outclassed us and Finn was very impressive," said Younus, who made 15. For Pakistan, Afridi top-scored with 38 as they were bowled out in 35 overs. Younus praised Cook's knock. "When the captain of the team plays like this the whole team is inspired and Cook's knock lifted England so we have to match them in their body language and performance," said Younus. For his part, Cook said he hoped his side keeps their feet on the ground after securing the much-needed win. "It's only one game, so let's not get carried away too much. It was a really good per-
formance and we will enjoy the feeling and make sure we come back as a side on Wednesday," he said. England's one-day captain was full of praise for Bopara and Finn. "I thought the way Ravi played and handled the pressure when we lost those two quick wickets was a real key moment because if we'd lost another couple of wickets
it would have been 'here we go again'. "Finn was outstanding. At 40 for four after 10 overs it's never over - with Afridi coming in at eight - but that was outstanding bowling and we played close to our potential which was pleasing," said Cook. The remaining two matches will be played in Dubai on February 18 and 21. Both teams will also play three Twenty20 internationals.
Pakistan still favourates in one-day series S PERvEz QAISER After winning the first match by 130 runs, England take on Pakistan in the second match of the series at Sheikh Zayed Stadium, Abu Dhabi on Wednesday (February 15). This day/night match will be the 70th one-day international between the two teams and seventh in United Arab Emirates. England have a good record against Pakistan in previous ODIs played between the two teams. They have won 39 and lost 28 in 68 previous encounters between the two sides. The remaining two matches ended without result. The English team also have a better record against the Pakistan in day/night matches. They have won 14 out of 24 played against Pakistan which won nine matches under lights. The remaining one match ended without a result. England have won six and Pakistan four in last 10 played between the two teams. England have a mixed one-day international record. While their home form remains impressive - they won series against both World Cup finalists, India and Sri Lanka, at home in 2011 - their away form is grim. They lost all five matches against India in October and 14 of their last 20 outside England. They have won just five and tied the other. Their record in Asia is even more gruesome. Since December 12, 2005, England have won just 13 of 39 ODIs in Asia and four of those victories came against Bangladesh and the Netherlands. Pakistan, by contrast, have won 12 of their last 14 ODIs and 23 of their last 31. England, however, have won six of the last seven ODI meetings between the two sides. hIghesT InnIngs ToTals: England recorded their highest total against Pakistan when they scored 363 for seven in 55 overs at Nottingham on August 20, 1992. Pakistan's highest against England is 353 for six in 50 overs at Karachi on December 15, 2005. lowesT InnIngs ToTals: Pakistan were bowled out for just 74 runs in 40.2 overs at Adelaide on March 1, 1992 which is their lowest total against England. England's lowest against Pakistan is 122 in 31.6 overs at Lahore on January 13, 1978. hIghesT IndIVIdual scores: Graham Gooch, who made 142 at Karachi on November 20, 1987 holds the record of highest individual score for England. The record of highest individual score for Pakistan against England is held by Ijaz Ahmed who scored 137 at Sharjah on April 17, 1999. besT bowlIng Performances: Waqar Younis' seven for 36 at Leeds on June 17, 2001 is the best bowling performance for Pakistan against England. Bob Willis and Mike Hendrick shared the record of best bowling performance for England against Pakistan. Willis took four wickets for 15 runs at Manchester on May 25, 1978 while Hendrick achieved the same at Leeds on June 16, 1979. hIghesT margIns of VIcTory: England's 198-run victory at Nottingham on August 20, 1992 is their biggest against Pakistan. Pakistan's biggest victory over England came at Karachi when they beat visitors by 165 runs on December 15, 2006. narrowesT margIns of VIcTory: Pakistan achieved their shortest victory against England by beating them by two runs at Nottingham on September 1, 1996. England's shortest victory over Pakistan is six runs at Rawalpindi on December 21, 2005. england-Pakistan one day encounters Summary of Results Played eng won Pak won Abandoned In england 36 22 13 In Pakistan 19 9 10 In India 2 1 1 In UAe 6 4 2 In Australia 5 2 2 1 In South Africa 1 1 Total: 69 39 28 1
india, Sri lanka oDi finish in dramatic tie SCOReBOARD SRI LANKA: u. Tharanga c Dhoni b Vinay Kumar 0 T. Dilshan c Dhoni b Pathan 16 K. Sangakkara c Gambhir b Ashwin 31 D. Chandimal run out (Sharma) 81 M. Jayawardene lbw b Vinay Kumar 43 A. Mathews run out (Dhoni) 17 T. Perera c Kohli b Ashwin 5 N. Kulasekara c Gambhir b Vinay Kumar 12 S. Senanayake not out 22 L. Malinga run out (Raina) 0 R. herath not out 1 eXTRAS (lb3, w5) 8 TOTAL (9 wickets for; 50 overs) 236 Fall of wickets: 1-0 (Tharanga), 2-28 (Dilshan), 3-79 (Sangakkara), 4-173 (Jayawardene), 5-178 (Chandimal), 6-184 (Perera), 7-210 (Mathews), 8-232 (Kulasekara), 9-235 (Malinga) BOWLING: Vinay Kumar 10-1-46-3 (1w), Pathan 9-0-38-1 (2w), Yadav 9-0-51-0, Ashwin 10-1-30-2, Jadeja 10-0-58-0, Sharma 20-10-0 (2w) INDIA: G. Gambhir run out (Kulasekara) 91 S. Tendulkar c Sangakkara b Kulasekara 15 V. Kohli lbw b Perera 15 R. Sharma run out (Jayawardene) 15 S. Raina c Sangakkara b Malinga 8
M.S. Dhoni not out 58 R. Jadeja c Jayawardene b Perera 3 R. Ashwin c Senanayake b Malinga 14 I. Pathan run out (Mathews) 8 R. Vinay Kumar run out (Mathews) 1 u. Yadav not out 0 eXTRAS (lb1, w6, nb1) 8 TOTAL (9 wickets for; 50 overs) 236 Fall of wickets: 1-24 (Tendulkar), 2-61 (Kohli), 3-94 (Sharma), 4118 (Raina), 5-178 (Gambhir), 6-184 (Jadeja), 7-212 (Ashwin), 8-223 (Pathan), 9-233 (Vinay Kumar) BOWLING: Malinga 10-1-53-2 (1w/2), Kulasekara 10-0-39-1 (1w), Mathews 5-0-35-0 (1nb, 1w), Perera 9-0-45-2 (1w), herath 10-133-0 (1w), Senanayake 6-0-30-0 Match tied Man-of-the-match: M.S. Dhoni (IND) Toss: Sri Lanka umpires: Simon Fry (AuS) and Nigel Llong (eNG) TV umpire: Bruce Oxenford (AuS) Match referee: Andy Pycroft (zIM). Standings Team P W L T Pts India 4 2 1 1 10 Australia 3 2 1 0 9 Sri Lanka 3 0 2 1 2
adelaIde: India and Sri Lanka finished in a sensational tie in their tri one-day series international at the Adelaide Oval on Tuesday. India skipper M.S. Dhoni needed to hit four off the last ball by Lasith Malinga but he was denied and the Indian players scampered through for three runs to level the scores. Both teams finished with 236 for nine from their 50 overs in a dramatic finale after India needed nine runs to win off the final over. Dhoni, who steered India to a final-over victory against Australia at the same ground last Sunday, threatened to re-
peat that success but was thwarted as the Sri Lankans searched desperately for their first win of the tri-series. The tie lifted India to the top of the tournament standings ahead of Australia, with Sri Lanka yet to win from their three games. Dhoni finished unbeaten on 58 off 69 balls with one booming six and three fours, while opening batsman Gautam Gambhir was out in the 90s for a second consecutive innings after he was run out for 91. India looked poised to nudge past the plucky Sri Lankans in the final over but Ran-
AdelAIde: Indiaâ€™s M S dhoni (c) tumbles at the crease to avoid a run-out during the one-day International match against Sri lanka. AfP ganath Vinay Kumar was run out on the second-last ball by a direct throw at the nonstriker's end. Dhoni then faced a final ball shot for a winning boundary only for Sachithra Senanayake to cut off the ball and enable India enough time to take three and level the scores. It was the first ever tie between India and Sri Lanka in one-dayers. Once again star India batsman Sachin Tendulkar failed to score his 100th international century and was dismissed for 15. Earlier, Dinesh Chandimal topscored with 81 as Sri Lanka reached 236 for nine off 50 overs.
Chandimal, 22, hit six fours and a six off 91 balls before he was run out and Sri Lanka, who won the toss, set India just over 4.7 runs an over to win. Sri Lanka never got going on a batting pitch as they seek a victory to stay in contention for the best-of-three match finals series next month. Kumar Sangakkara scored just 31 off 56 balls with two fours before he was caught off a leading edge at mid-on from spinner Ravi Ashwin in the 20th over. Skipper Mahela Jayawardene hit 43 off 49 balls and put on 94 for the fourth wicket
with Chandimal before he was leg before wicket to Vinay Kumar in the 37th over. Chandimal was out in the next over when batting partner Angelo Mathews went for a quick single to short cover only for Rohit Sharma to whip the ball back to wicketkeeper Dhoni to break the stumps. Senanayake cracked 22 off 14 balls to remain unbeaten with Mathews (17) and Thisara Perera (5) out cheaply. Vinay Kumar finished the best of India's bowlers with three for 46 off 10 overs, while Ashwin claimed two wickets. AFP
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England hungry for whitewash revenge: Patel ABU DHABI AFP
NGLAND all-rounder Samit Patel warned Tuesday that his side were gunning for revenge in the one-day series against Pakistan after the 3-0 Test whitewash. England rebounded from their humiliating Test showing with a comprehensive 130-run victory in the first day-night international here on Monday. "We're looking to absolutely nail this series, to beat them 4-0, whitewash them -- obviously a bit of payback for the Test series. It would be a great achievement. That would be fantastic. We've got to aim high," said Patel. England rode on a brilliant skipper's knock of 137 by Alastair Cook -- his best in one-day internationals -- and Ravi Bopara's 50 to cruise to 260-7 in their 50 overs. Patel gave the finishing touches with a brisk 17 not out. Paceman Steven Finn then rocked Pakistan with a burst of 4-34, his career
Sidra, beenish steer garrison club to victory LAHORE STAFF RePORT
Sidra Nawaz and Beenish Javed steered Garrison Club to 160-run crushing victory over Comprehensive Learning College (CLC) in the Lahore Region Inter-district Senior Women Cricket Championship match here at the GCU ground on Tuesday. Garrison Club, batting first, piled up a good total of 223 runs for the loss of four wickets in 35 overs as five overs were reduced due to ground conditions. Sidra Nawaz was the key player for Garrison Club as she remained unbeaten on 56 while Zaiba Manzoor (42), Mahlika Mansoor (34) and Shamsa Hashmi (39) played well. Sonia Ashraf, Zunaira Sajid and Momina got one wicket each for CLC. CLC, in reply, were bundled out on merely 63 runs in 26.2 overs. Only Zoya Ikram (11) and Irum Aslam (19) reached the double figures. Beenish Javed bowled brilliantly and clinched four wickets for eight runs while Mahlika Mansoor and Shamsa Hashmi took two wickets each for nine and 11 runs respectively. Today (Wednesday), Garrison Club will take on Ravi Club at KC ground while Universal Club will play against APWA Club at GCU ground. Brief scores: Garrison Club: 223 in 35 overs (Sidra Nawaz 56*, Zaiba Manzoor 42, Mahlika Mansoor 34, Shamsa Hashmi 39; Sonia Ashraf, Zunaira Sajid and Momina one wicket each). CLC: 63 all out in 26.2 overs (Zoya Ikram 11, Irum Aslam 19; Beenish Javed 4/8, Mahlika Mansoor 2/9, Shamsa Hashmi 2/11).
best, before Patel took 3-26 with his leftarm spin to bowl their rivals out for a mere 130. "I wouldn't say it's relief," the 27year-old Patel said of the victory. "It's just great to get back to winning ways really. "It's been a tough period that we've
had, but you've got to take the ups and downs really and move forward - and we're doing that right now." The Nottinghamshire spinner was part of the team when England were routed 5-0 in their one-day series in India last year, but stressed that there'd be no looking backwards.
"I'm loving my role at the moment," he said. "Unfortunately, we didn't go too well in India - but we've got to look forward now, and this series is key to put a bit of a marker down playing in the subcontinent and well against spin." With his performance Patel would like to cement a one-day place after the England management made it clear that it was his attitude to fitness that was keeping him out of the side last year. Patel stressed England should play 50-over format rather than the prevailing 40-over in their domestic cricket. "I think the (right) preparation would be to go 50-over cricket in England, if we're going to prepare for the next World Cup. I think 50-over cricket is crucial, and I don't see any point in playing the 40-over format if we're going to be playing 50 in the World Cup. "At the moment we're sticking to a 40-over format, which attracts a lot of crowds. People say the 50-over format is dead. But I think if we're looking for the bigger picture, towards the next World Cup, 50-over cricket should come back."
new Zealand win T20 as Zimbabwe end tour winless HAMILTON AFP
New Zealand secured a dramatic fivewicket victory over Zimbabwe in the final Twenty20 international Tuesday to condemn the visitors to a winless tour. Kane Williamson (20) scored 14 runs in the final over to seal the win with just two balls to spare after half centuries from openers James Franklin (60) and Rob Nicol (56). The result capped a dismal tour for Zimbabwe, who proved competitive in two T20 matches but were outclassed by New Zealand in a one-off Test and three one-day internationals. The tourists saved their best performance for the final match, choosing to bat after winning the toss and scoring 200 for two, their best ever T20 score, at Hamilton's Seddon Park. Determined to finally break the shackles, opener Hamilton Masakadza (62) and captain Brendan Taylor (75) anchored the innings but fell just short after Williamson, in only his third T20 international, steered the Black Caps home. "Obviously it's bitterly disappointing but I think our boys can hold our heads high," Taylor said. "If we're going get that type of total we're going to be a lot more competitive in the future." Taylor said he was pleased not to lose early wickets as Hamilton Masakadza and Stuart Matsikenyeri made a 76-run opening partnership, the first time the tourists' openers have managed a stand
hAMIlTon: new zealand's rob nicol bats during the second Twenty20 against zimbabwe. AfP
SCOReBOARD zIMBABWe h. Masakadza c de Grandhomme b Bates 62 S. Matsikenyeri c Southee b hira 32 B. Taylor not out 75 e. Chigumbura not out 29 2 eXTRAS (b1 w1) TOTAL (2 wickets; 20 overs) 200 Fall of wickets: 1-76 (Matsikenyeri), 2-121 (Masakadza) BOWLING: Mills 4-0-40-0, Bates 4-0-47-1, Southee 4-0-350, N.McCullum 1-0-15-0, hira 3-0-31-1, ellis 1-0-10-0, Williamson 2-0-16-0, Nicol 1-0-5-0 NeW zeALAND R. Nicol c Meth b Chigumbura 56 J. Franklin run out 60 B. McCullum c Waller b Jarvis 38 C. de Grandhomme b Chigumbura 8
5 N. McCullum c Chigumbura b Jarvis A. ellis not out 2 K. Williamson not out 20 eXTRAS (b4, lb3, w6) 13 TOTAL (5 wickets; 19.4 overs) 202 Fall of wickets: 1-103 (Nicol), 2-142 (Franklin), 3-160 (de Grandhomme), 4-180 (B.McCullum), 5-180 (N.McCullum) BOWLING: Meth 3-0-30-0, Jarvis 4-0-35-2, utseya 4-0-380, Price 4-0-39-0, S.Masakadza 1.4-0-30-0, Chigumbura 3-0-23-0 Toss: zimbabwe Series: New zealand win the series 2-0 Man of the match: James Franklin (NzL) umpires: Gary Baxter (NzL), Chris Gaffaney (NzL) TV umpire: Barry Frost (NzL) Match referee: David Boon (AuS).
exceeding 50 runs in the entire tour. Zimbabwe's bowlers also produced a much improved performance, with Kyle Jarvis
taking two wickets in two balls in the penultimate over and Elton Chingumbura finishing with figures of two for 23.
five matches decided in SbP Governor Cup LAHORE STAFF RePORT
lAhore: openers ehsan and waqas walk out of the ground after completing their centuries.
Another five matches were played on the third day of the 8th SBP Governor Cup Super Series Cricket Tournament-2012 here at three venues of the city on Tuesday. Two matches each were played at LCCA Ground and Aligarh Cricket Grounds while the fifth was played at the Cricket Centre ground. In the first match between SBP Lahore beat SBP Hyderabad by 126 runs. SBP Lahore got 256 for five in 20 overs and restricted SBP Hyderabad at 130 for four wickets in 20 overs. Zainul Hussain scored 101 runs and was declared the man of the match. In the second match, SBP Karachi, in its 64 runs win, scored 209 without loss in 20 overs against HBL Karachi and restricted HBL Karachi at 145 for nine.
napoli back to winning ways thanks to Uruguayan duo
Openers Ehsan and Waqas scored 101 and 100 runs respectively and remained not out. In the third match Bank of Khyber, Peshawar won the match against HBL Multan by 47 runs. Bank of Khyber made 182 runs for loss of three wickets in 18 overs and in reply HBL Multan could score 134 runs for eight wickets in 18 overs. Walayaullah scored 73 and Saeed scored 70 from BOK, Peshawar. In the fourth match, UBL Karachi beat SBP Rawalpindi by 63 runs. UBL made 172 runs for three wickets in 20 overs. SBP Rawalpindi could score 108 runs for eight wickets in 20 overs. Wasim Ahmad and Wasim Akhtar both scored 66 and 42 runs (not out) respectively to be the highest scorers from UBL Karachi. In the last match, PPCBL Lahore won easily against SBP Multan. PPCBL Lahore scored 193 for eight in 20 overs with Umar making 46 runs and Mubeen getting 41.
Napoli ended a winless run of five matches on Monday with a 2-0 win over Serie A rivals Chievo thanks to goals from Uruguayan duo Miguel Angel Britos and Edinson Cavani. The win - which followed a run of four draws and a defeat - saw them climb to a point off sixth-placed AS Roma, who slumped to a surprise 1-0 defeat by relegation-threatened Siena. Napoli had the game won by half-time as first Britos rose to head home a 14th minute corner and then Cavani otherwise known as the 'Matador' tucked away a 37th minute penalty he had obtained himself when fouled by Chievo goalkeeper Stefano Sorrentino. Napoli coach Walter Mazzarri said that his side were capable of playing better football once they relaxed. "This is an important victory," he said. "I am convinced that when we overcome the fear factor, the pressure that we feel weighing down on us, Napoli will show a much better quality of play." Roma were left kicking themselves as they missed the chance to leapfrog ailing Inter Milan - who had seen their winless run extended to five games with a stunning 1-0 defeat to tailenders Novara on Sunday. Siena's goal came from the penalty spot in the 51st minute after Danish central defender Simon Kjaer - who had only come on at half-time - brought down Mattia Destro earning him a yellow card to boot.
cash bonus for zambia's cup winners LUSAKA AFP
The Zambian government has given $59,000 to each player in the national side which won the country's first Africa Cup of Nations title on Sunday, the sports minister said Tuesday. "The government has given each one of you $59,000, and that is beside what the corporate organisations might decide to give. This money is from the government," Chishimba Kambwili said on national radio. The award is a princely sum in a nation where, per capita, the gross domestic product is less than $1,500. Zambia defeated hot favourites Ivory Coast 8-7 on penalties after 120 goalless minutes in Sunday's final, which had emotional overtones for Zambia. The final was staged in the Gabonese capital Libreville, off whose coast a military aircraft carrying the 1993 Zambian national squad plunged into the Atlantic Ocean, killing all 30 players, officials and crew on board.
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Islamabad clinch national U-14 Football trophy ISLAMABAD STAFF RePORT
Islamabad lifted the National U-14 Football Championship-2012 trophy after edging out Sindh 3-1 on Wednesday in the final played at the Jinnah Stadium, Pakistan Sports Board. Makhdoom Syed Faisal Saleh Hayat, President PFF, who was the chief guest of the day, awarded the U-14 Football Championship-2012 trophy to U-14 Islamabad Football Association. The final between the two top teams of the event, was a treat to watch. The match started in a very positive manner and both the teams played attacking soccer right from the start of the game. The match remained goalless in the stipulated time and was decided on penalty shoot-out. Islamabad boys started to take the penalties first and missed two kicks and converted three goals through Luqman (DF), Hassam (FW) and Rai Hammad (FW) while Sindh missed three kicks and only converted one goal through Junaid (FW). The PFF President was accompanied by Ahmed Yar Khan Lodhi, General Secretary, PFF. Besides the winner’s trophy Islamabad pocketed Rs 75,000 while runners-up team Sindh got trophy and Rs 50,000. Punjab got third position trophy and Rs 25,000. Shah Zaib of Sindh snatched the best player title with cash award of Rs 10,000, while Rs 10,000 were awarded to Muneer Munna of Sindh for his nomination as highest goal scorer. Karachi Zone A was awarded Fair Play Trophy and cash prize of Rs 15,000. Earlier for third position match was played between Punjab and Karachi Zone B and was won by the Punjab team through a kick by Muhammad Yasir (FW) into the net in the 61st minutes and captured the third position. Talking to the media, the President PFF said that the focus of this championship was to create awareness of children towards soccer and in the process raise the standard of overall the performance of the teams and support the development of each individual player within the game. He further informed that the event was aimed at selecting and preparing the National-14 football team for AFC U-14 Football Festival-2012 to be held from April 3 to 14 at the Jinnah Stadium Islamabad.
Army, hataff win Aibak Polo cup openers LAHORE STAFF RePORT
Pakistan Army-Nadra and Hataff Security grabbed big wins on the opening day o the ECU Line Aibak Polo Cup 2012 here at the LPC ground on Tuesday. Pak Army/Nadra hammered nine goals against Shahpur, which have two goals advantage, eight. James Harper played a vital role in the win with six goals while Maj Gen Isfandiyar Ali Khan Pataudi supported him with two goals and Raja Temur Nadeem with one. The losing side had their share of goals through all of their riders - Malik Atif Yar Tiwana, Ahmed Ali Tiwana, Maj Omer Minhas and Capt Shoukat Ali Malik. In the other match of the day, Hataff Security prevailed over Guard Filter/Newageby (10½ goals to four. Vieri Antinori cracked six goals while Bilal Haye contributed three and Mir Shoaib Ahmad one in their team’s win. The losing team had their goals though Shah Shamyl Alam (1) and Hissam Ali Hyder (3). Umpires for the matches were Simon Mclaren Tosh, Raul Laplacett and Ignacio Del Tourn while referees were Santiago Mendivil and Gaston Moore.
ISlAMAbAd: The Islamabad team celebrates after winning the national U-14 Football championship-2012 as PFF President Faisal Saleh hayat, Secretary col Ahmed yar and others look on. STAff PhoTo
Ponting to lead Australia in Clarke’s absence india brings in new bowling coach after Test defeats
ORMER skipper Ricky Ponting will lead Australia in the place of injured Michael Clarke for Australia's tri one-day series international against Sri Lanka in Sydney, officials said on Tuesday. Ponting, who was replaced as Australia captain last year, was named as the stand-in skipper for Friday's match after Clarke injured a hamstring in the team's four-wicket loss to India in Adelaide on Sunday. Team officials said they hoped Clarke would recover from his strain in time for Sunday's ODI against India in Brisbane. "After careful consideration the selection panel has asked Ricky Ponting if he would captain the Australian ODI team in Michael Clarke's absence," chief selector John Inverarity said. "The panel appreciates the fact that Ricky is prepared to accept this responsibility in the wider interests of the team." Paceman Brett Lee and senior batsman Mike Hussey return to the squad with fast bowler Ryan Harris rested, but there was no place for Test wicketkeeper Brad Haddin, who has yet to play in the tri ODI series. Selectors also named opening batsman David Warner as team vicecaptain in the continuing absence of Shane Watson, who will try to prove his fitness in a Sheffield Shield match this weekend. "Michael Clarke will not be con-
new delhI: Australian Joe Dawes was on Tuesday named as India's new bowling coach to replace South African Eric Simons following the team's dismal overseas Test performance in recent months. "Joe Dawes has been appointed the bowling coach of the Indian team for a period of two years," Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) secretary Sanjay Jagdale said in a statement. "He will replace Eric Simons, whose term ends at the completion of India's ongoing tour of Australia." The decision to hire Dawes, 41, comes after India were whitewashed 4-0 by Australia to record eight successive overseas Test defeats following a similar hammering in England last year. Former Queensland paceman Dawes, who bagged 285 wickets in 76 first-class matches between 1997 and 2005, has served as bowling coach of South Australia. Simons, 49, is the first member of the team management to be replaced after the Test losses where the form and fitness of the bowlers was a major worry. Simons, who represented South Africa in 23 one-day internationals, was appointed in 2010 and was part of the World Cup-winning Indian squad coached by compatriot Gary Kirsten. India's cricket chiefs, however, ruled out an enquiry into the national team's away Test defeats. "I think it's premature to talk of an enquiry, there's no need for any enquiry if you ask me," said BCCI president Narayanaswamy Srinivasan. "Let the team come back. Then the selectors, the coach, and the others will evaluate what needs to be done further to improve performance if it is considered necessary." India are currently playing a triangular one-day series in Australia, also featuring Sri Lanka. AFP sidered for the ODI in Sydney this Friday due to a low-grade hamstring strain," Inverarity said. "The medical staff are hopeful that Michael will be fit to play in Brisbane on Sunday and that is why he has been included in the squad." Inverarity said some players were showing signs of fatigue after a demanding summer of Tests, ODIs and Twenty20 cricket. "Ryan Harris has been omitted for this reason and for the fact that he is carrying some minor niggles," he said. "The selectors have refreshed the squad with the inclusion of Brett Lee and Ben Hilfenhaus. "Brett is making a good recovery from his toe injury and will be given rigorous fitness tests before Friday's ODI, and as expected Michael Hussey returns to the squad." Inverarity said new vice-captain Warner had the potential to lead the team one day. "David Warner is a young player making his way. He displays considerable leadership potential, but the panel is of
the view that he should not, at this moment, have the added responsibility of captaincy thrust on him," he said. Former Test captain Steve Waugh said he could not understand why selectors chose Ponting as the stand-in skipper ahead of Warner. "If David Warner is in there as vice-captain I assume they think he's leadership material and if he's vicecaptain why can't he captain the side as well?" Waugh told reporters. "Ricky will do it blindfolded but the future is probably David Warner, so I'm surprised they didn't go to Warner." Inverarity said all-rounder Watson would play in domestic Shield cricket this weekend to prove his fitness after a hamstring injury. Australia - Michael Clarke (capt), Ricky Ponting (capt for ODI vs Sri Lanka), David Warner (vice-capt), Dan Christian, xavier Doherty, Peter Forrest, Ben Hilfenhaus, David Hussey, Michael Hussey, Brett Lee, Mitchell Marsh, Clint McKay, Mitchell Starc, Matthew Wade.
Punjab Sports Festival enters into concluding phase LAHORE STAFF RePORT
The Punjab Sports Festival, one of the biggest sporting extravaganza of the province, has entered into its concluding phase. A number of sports events being held at various tehsils across the province have either concluded or are about to end with the players displaying their skills in a number of disciplines. In Lahore, Model Town, Fatima from Sisa School Joher Town won 100m and 200m races while Maria from Sisa School Joher Town was positions in 400m, 800m and 1500m races. In long jump, Kiran from Government HS Umer Block Iqbal Town Lahore won the event while Javeria from Sisa School Joher Town was the winner of shotput and javelin throw. In cricket matches, Iqbal Town UC 112 beat Gulberg Town UC 127 by 1 run. Arslan was declared the man of the match. In Cantt/Shalamar, (General public) cricket match, UC 60 scored 125 to beat UC 58 with 105 runs. Ahmed scored the highest runs of 65, UC 57 beat UC 44 by 43 runs. Kaleem made highest score of 72 runs. In Inter school Cricket, Government Muslim School beat Government High School Jallomore by 4 runs while Government High School Ghorayshah beat CDGL Mujahidabad by 51 runs. In badminton Inter School Boys, Hassan Majeed from Government School Jallomore beat Sabtain from Muslim High School Sadar Cantt. Mohammad Zulifqar and Liaqat outplayed Mohammad Ayb and Mohammad Javed 2-0. In Lahore City, the girls volleyball matches were held. Government Girls HS Samanabad beat Government HS Dev Samaj Road 3-1. In Inter School Football finals, Government HS Shahdra swayed Government Central Model School Lower Mall 2-0. In General Public football final, UC 109 beat UC 26 by 4-0. The score was equal 1-1 by the end of the match and was decided on penalty shoot out. UC 109 scored 4 goals while UC 26 could not score. In hockey boys, Educators thrashed Junior Model School Chouburji 5-0. Meanwhile, Deputy Speaker Punjab Assembly Rana Mashood Ahmed visited the National Hockey Stadium to check the arrangements of the ongoing Sports Festival. Secretary Sports Allah Bukhsh was also present on the occasion.
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Sports 21 Federer forgets his Davis Cup loss wednesday, 15 February, 2012
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Pakistan v Enland 2nd ODI 04:00 PM
BD Premier League Barisal v Chittagong 01:25 PM
Pakistan in group b of AFc U-22 Asian cup qualifiers
OGER Federer has begun putting his weekend Davis Cup disappointment well behind him as he returns to the Rotterdam Open for the first time since winning the 2005 title. The world number three and his family flew to the Dutch port city only a day after Switzerland suffered a 5-0 thrashing from the United States in Davis Cup play in Fribourg. Adding insult to injury was the mis-translation of Federer's French remarks into English after he and Olympic gold-medal partner Stanislas were beaten in doubles. While Federer said: "I played a good doubles, and Stan not a bad one," the remark was reported in English as Federer saying his partner played poorly. But the Swiss said the matter has been put to rest along with any lingering memories. "It was a tough weekend for us, we were clearly not at our best at home," said the 30year-old, who begins Rotterdam play as top seed tonight against Frenchman Nicolas Mahut. "It was a disappointing result. But I had a day to recover on Sunday and that helped. The Stan comment was taken completely the wrong way. "I'd never say that, and I'll move on quickly. I spoke with both (captain) Severin (Luthi) and Stan to make sure there is no misunderstanding." Federer will be competing at the Ahoy stadium for the seventh time in his career and is keen to come good after seven years away. As the lone member of the tennis top four to play Davis Cup and planning to carry on here this week and later in Dubai, Federer said that he was working with a purpose this month. "I tried to make Rotterdam happen in 2011. but it's hap-
rashid habib open golf starts at Karachi
Gavaskar pleads for early India-Pakistan series
At the end of the first round of the Rashid D.Habib Memorial Open Golf Tournament, that started at the Karachi Golf Club Golf Course, the competition was extremely tough as four top contenders emerged in front with a similar score of 3 under par 69, each one playing a game of top quality. The four champions bunched together at the top of the leaderboard are Shabbir Iqbal (Islamabad), Matloob Ahmed (Garrison, Lahore), Muhammad Safdar (Gujranwala) and Jafal Hussain (Gymkhana). Two other leading professionals, Shahid Javed Khan (Royal Palm) and Nadeem Inayat (Karachi) are placed one stroke behind at a score of 2 under par 70. Mohammad Nazir of Islamabad is at 71. As this championship moves into the second round, the competitors are likely to try and undo each other through more excellence, although with Shabbir there playing superbly, it is not going to be easy to curb his winning ways. However Matloob looks determined to prove that he has the ability to capture the top slot and equally charged up is Shahid Javed Khan. In the seniors professional category, Ghulam Nabi a former star of the eighties and nineties looks the man in charge of the seniors section and had the best round of the day, a gross 71. Others who look good in the seniors section are Asghar Ali, 72, A. Hameed 75 and Akbar Ali 75. A total of 104 golfers are participating in the tournament including top 26 ranking players of the country. The weather was windy and slight chilly in the morning. Course is in excellent condition with good fairways and good greens. The tournament is being sponsored by Bank AL Habib Limited, which has completed 20 years of successful operation in January 2012. Professionals are also allowed the free use of the practice range for the entire period of the tournament. In addition to the prize money, the Bank will be paying the top five rated professionals in the country Rs 50,000 each to encourage their participation. Lieutenant Commander Irfan Rasheed, Honoray Secretary Karachi Golf Club Karsaz said: “I would like to appreciate the cooperation of Bank Al Habib in promotion of golf, which is an expensive game and accessible to limited segments in our country. I am also thankful to Sindh Golf Association and Pakistan Golf Federation for introducing programs for encouraging new talent.”
pening now. I just felt it was the right thing to do. "I'm feeling healthy and have had no problems with my back (pain) from Doha. I'm perfectly fine after Davis Cup." Federer leads the field, with Czech Tomas Berdych seeded second ahead of Argentine Juan Martin del Potro, making his debut at the indoor event.
Batting legend Sunil Gavaskar on Tuesday said he hoped a window could be found to accommodate an India-Pakistan series, as tight schedules were stopping the arch-rivals from playing each other. India suspended all bilateral ties with Pakistan in the wake of the deadly 2008 Islamist militant attacks in Mumbai, which New Delhi blamed on extremists based across the border. But despite a recent thaw, with Pakistan declaring India "the most favoured nation" and both prime ministers vowing to improve relations, formal cricketing ties remain suspended. Both countries are scheduled to play in 2013 under the International Cricket Council (ICC) Future Tours Programme (FTP) but India's busy schedule has left no space for the ties to be revived. Former India captain Gavaskar said his country's tight schedule makes the imminent resumption of matches tough. "Hurdles are very simply, the tight schedules which are there for India in particular are stopping the revival. India are absolutely tight up until 2014," Gavaskar told AFP. "I think if the ICC can convince other scheduled tours around India and Pakistan to be delayed
then maybe it can create a window but honestly... it looks difficult even in 2014." Gavaskar, widely respected in both India and Pakistan for his superb batting, said any series between the two South Asian rivals needs proper time and length. "Frankly, if you want to have a India-Pakistan series it can't be one Test. It has to be a proper three Test, five one-day and two to three Twenty20. But I think the real connoisseur of the game wants India and Pakistan to play Tests," he added. People in both countries were missing the contest, while the cricketers were keen to play and prove themselves, he said, likening the contest to the age-old rivalry between England and Australia. Gavaskar said the last match between the two countries in Mohali -- the one day international World Cup semi-final in March 2011 -- was memorable, not just for the electric atmosphere among the fans both inside and outside the stadium. Pakistan's prime minister, Yousuf Raza Gilani, attended the match at the invitation of his Indian counterpart Manmohan Singh in a move seen as "cricket diplomacy" to improve fractured ties. "There is that wanting on the part of the cricket supporters but their hands are tied for the reasons that the schedules are tight," said Gavaskar. "As former players we can only talk about it. It's up to the administrators whose hands are tied because they need approvals from the respective governments."
lahore: Pakistan under-22 football team has been drawn in group B of the AFC Under-22 Asian Cup Qualifiers as the official draw for the event took place at AFC House in Kuala Lumpur on Tuesday. In all 41 Member Associations have entered the fray to grab 15 spots in the final competition to be played in 2013. The qualifiers will take place from June 23 to July 3, 2012 in seven centralised venues, which will be announced later. Pakistan has been placed with Saudi Arabia, Syria, Palestine, Kyrgyzstan, Sri Lanka. The teams were divided into six groups of six teams each and one group of five. They will play one-round league format and the top two teams will qualify for the tournament proper along with the best thirdplaced team in all the groups. The hosts of the Finals will get a direct berth. The groUPIngS group A: UAe, Iraq, oman, India, Turkmenistan, lebanon group b: S Arabia, Syria, Pakistan, Palestine, Kyrgyzstan, S lanka group c: bahrain, Iran, Tajikistan, qatar, Kuwait, Maldives group d: Uzbekistan, Jordan, yemen, bangladesh, nepal group e: Australia, Japan, Indonesia, Singapore, Macau, Timor leste group F: dPr Korea, china, Thailand, hK, laos, cambodia group g: Korea republic, Vietnam, Malaysia, Myanmar, chinese Taipei, The Philippines. STAFF RePORT
nomi qamer into ranking Tennis next round KarachI: Top seeded player Nomi Qamer eased to the next round of the 10th Westbury Open Ranking Tennis Tournament being played at Karachi Club. Nomi Qamer beat Adil Kohari in straight sets in the men’s singles first round while in the ladies category, Seher Khwaja moved past Wania Khan to the next round. In the junior under-17 category quarterfinal matches were decided and Talha Zubair, Malik Hamza and Hassaan Siddiqui won their respective matches. results: Men s Singles First round: nomi qamer beat Adil Kohari 7-5, 6-3, Vinod das beat Talha zubair 7-6, rtd. ladies Singles first round: Seher Khwaja beat wania Khan 6-0, 6-2 Juniors Under 17 Singles First round: Marib Malik beat nazif Ahmed 6-3, 7-6, Sameer Farishta beat Sheheryar Shehzad 6-3, 6-2 Juniors under 17 Singles quarter Finals: Talha zubair beat Shehroz 6-0, 6-0, Malik hamza beat Fahad Khan 6-2, 62, hassaan Siddiqui beat Sameer Farishta 6-3, 6-3 boys & girls Under 13 Singles First round: houd Azher beat Saad Sohail 8-3, M. raza sawani beat Abdul rehman 8-3 STAFF RePORT
Ivanovic advances, Kerber keeps winning form DOHA AFP
Ana Ivanovic made the second round while Germany's Angelique Kerber carried her good form into Doha by upsetting ninth seeded Sabine Lisicki in three sets in the first round of the WTA Qatar Open on Tuesday. Ivanovic was denied a full match as rival Carla Suarez Navarro retired with a back problem in the second set. It was the fourth time in as many matches that Kerber had got the better of her compatriot, who is ranked 14th in the world and considered as one of the rising stars of the game. "She is a great player who is also a good friend, so it's not easy playing against her," Kerber, who won the Paris Indoors last week, said after her 4-6, 6-4, 6-1 victory. "We travel together and live in the same hotels, but I was focused on my game," Kerber added. Kerber's form has been nothing short of spectacular recently, the German reaching at least the semis in six of the past 10
tournaments she played before winning her first WTA title in Paris where she beat Frenchwoman Marion Bartoli in the final. "I am really playing well, but this is a big tournament with many stars playing, but I will really try my best," said the world's 22-ranked player. The top eight players in the field have been given first round byes and will see action only on Wednesday, with world number one Victoria Azarenka of Belarus and Caroline Wozniacki of Denmark the favourites. Ivanovic, the former world number one, who has now slipped to 19th in the rankings, had won the first set 6-1 and was leading 4-1 in the second when her Spanish rival quit after receiving courtside treatment. And the Serbian star knows she has a long way to go before she reaches the level that saw her win the French Open in 2008. "I think it's different in the sense that now a lot more girls can challenge top players from the early rounds," Ivanovic said. "That's exciting for us, because we do want challenges. But I feel like those girls
that are on top at the moment, they're playing very aggressively, and that's the way you have to play in order to win. "It's a big challenge for us to raise our level." But despite the challenges, the Serbian beauty added that her goal was to get as higher in the rankings as possible. "Well, that's why I'm here," she said when asked if she was targeting the number one status again." she said. "If I didn't think so, I probably wouldn't be sitting here. But, yeah, I definitely believe so." Meanwhile, former US and French Open champion Svetlana Kuznetsova survived a tough first set to beat Spaniard Maria Jose Martinez-Sanchez 7-5, 6-3. "It took me a while to understand her game but I played well," said the 18th ranked Russian. "The first match is always tough but Doha is one of my favourite destinations and I like playing here," added Kuznetsova, who won 13 titles and was runner-up in 19 tournaments on the WTA Tour.
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BLF kills seven labourers in Kechh g
Shutter-down strike observed in most parts of balochistan to protest killing of bRP leader QUETTA
T least seven non-local labourers were killed by armed men in Kechh district, 1,050kms southwest of Quetta, on Tuesday in an attack claimed by the Baloch Liberation Front. According to reports, the labourers, who belonged to Waziristan, were working for a private construction
company building the Turbat-Buleda Road. They were in their camp in Masken, around 120kms north of Turbat, when eight armed men surrounded the camp, lined up seven labourers and sprayed them with bullets. All seven men were killed on the spot. The armed men separated two local labourers and allowed them to go. After the incident the Levies and personnel of the Frontier Corps Balochistan rushed to the area and took
custody of the bodies. Confirming the incident, Kechh Deputy Commissioner Hafeez Hoath said the attackers were believed to be eight to 10 in number. He said the attackers set the road construction machinery and company’s vehicles on fire before escaping. Doda Baloch, a spokesman for the banned Baloch Liberation Front, called newspaper offices and claimed the responsibility for the attack. He said the BLA had time and again warned construction companies
and their labourers not to be part of conspiracies against the Baloch people. Meanwhile, a complete shutter-down strike was observed in most parts of Balochistan to protest the killing of Sangat Sana Baloch, a leader of the Baloch Republican Party, whose bullet-ridden body was recovered along with that of another political activist on Monday. Two more decomposed bodies of Baloch missing persons were recovered in Lasbela on Tuesday.
SRINAGAR: Kashmiri youth listen to the Dukhtaran-e-Millat (Daughters of Faith) during an Islamist raid at a restaurant on Tuesday. Dukhtaran-e-Millat is an Islamic women's group which raided restaurants to prevent young Muslim couples from meeting on Valentine's Day. AfP
Pakistan only allowing nATo food supplies through air: Mukhtar Islamabad: Pakistan on Tuesday admitted that it had allowed NATO to use its airspace for supplies to Afghanistan, but said the permission was granted for food items only. “The permission has been given for food items only,” Defence Minister Chaudhry Ahmed Mukhtar told reporters at a PIA function on Tuesday. He said, “We have allowed them to transport food items by air to Afghanistan as they were perishable. However, we have also told them not to bring more food supplies after allowing them to transport some by air,” he said. Earlier, US Ambassador Cameron Munter had stated that NATO had continued to fly supplies into Afghanistan despite the closure of the Pakistani border to NATO trucks and containers after the November 26 NATO airstrikes on two Pakistani border checkposts. Pakistan also asked US to vacate the Shamsi airbase that was used for drone strikes in the country’s tribal regions. Moreover, Islamabad boycotted the Bonn Conference on peace and security in Afghanistan after NATO attacks on its border posts. However, the US and Pakistan have been able to iron out differences on conflicting matters such as the restoration of NATO supplies, which are likely to be fully restored with an added measure of taxation after an approval by Pakistani parliament. The joint sitting of both houses of parliament will be held in the next few days to review relations with the US and it would approve a resolution for the purpose, which is expected to pave the way for the normalisation of Pakistan-US relations. Asked about the reports of extension in the service of Pakistan Air Force Chief, Rao Qamar Suleman, the defence minister said the decision to grant extension to the air chief was a matter beyond him and his job was to move a summary in this regard. STAff REPoRT
Aitzaz Ahsen, ishaq Dar elected to Senate unopposed ISLAMABAD/LAHORE/PESHAWAR/QUETTA STAFF RePORT
Two senior politicians, the Pakistan People’s Party (PPP)’s Aitzaz Ahsen and the Pakistan Muslim LeagueNawaz (PML-N)’s Ishaq Dar, have been elected to the Senate unopposed on two technocrats’ seats from Punjab. Dar and Ahsen were the only two candidates for the two seats reserved for technocrats from Punjab, and were therefore elected unopposed. Kamran Michael is also set to be elected to the minority seat reserved for Punjab. For the remaining 52 seats, 164 candidates from all major political parties have filed their nomination papers with the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) to contest the Senate elections, scheduled to be held on March 2. Five candidates submitted their nomination papers for elections on two seats reserved for the federal capital. Members of the National Assembly will vote for one general seat and one reserved for technocrats from Islamabad. The candidates for the Islamabad seats are PML-Quaid’s Syed Mushaid Hussain, PPP’s Usman Saifullah, and the PML-N’s Dr Mazhar Hussain and Umar Mughal. According to the ECP, 25 candidates filed their nomination papers for 12 seats from Punjab, whereas 32 candidates filed papers for 12 seats from Sindh. Similarly, for 12 seats reserved for Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KP), 38 candidates submitted their nomination papers while for 12 seats reserved for Balochistan, 51 candidates submitted their nomination papers. Sixteen candi-
dates filed nominations for four seats reserved for FATA. The 12 National Assembly members from the tribal areas will elect the four candidates. Those who submitted their nomination papers for FATA seats are HameedUllah Jan Afridi, Aurangzeb Khan, Jalal-ur-Rehman, Malik Abdul Rehman, Abdul Waheed Khan, Muhammad Salah Shah, Sahibzada Abdul Salam, Munir Orkazai, Dr Abul Qadir, Sajid Hussain Turi, Najumul Hasan, Jawad Hussain, Hidayat Ullah, Bismilah Khan, Abdul Malik and Hussain Khan. Members of the provincial assemblies of Punjab, Sindh, KP and Balochistan will each elect seven members for general seats of the Senate, two for seats reserved for women and two technocrats (including clerics). In addition, MPAs from Punjab, KP, Balochistan and Sindh will elect to the Senate one member each for the four seats reserved for Non-Muslims/minorities. In the wake of the Senate elections, the ruling alliance in KP – the Awami National Party (ANP) and the Pakistan People’s Party (PPP) – has already agreed to jointly contest the election under a formula and divided seven general, two technocrat and women seats besides one minority seat. The ANP with 48 MPAs and PPP with 30 MPAs in the House of 124, have distributed 12 general seats, two technocrat, women and minority seats and held negotiations with the provincial leaders of the Jamiat Ulema-eIslam-Fazl (JUI-F) having 15 MPAs. Sources in the KP Election Commission said a total of 38 candidates had filed their nomination papers for seven
Published by Arif Nizami for Nawa Media Corporation (Pvt) Ltd at Plot # 7, Al-Baber Centre, F/8 Markaz, Islamabad.
general seats, two each for technocrats and women reserved seat and one for minority seats from KP in the Senate. Another 11 candidates, including Mohammad Ali Saif of the All Pakistan Muslim League, submitted their papers for the general seats. Nisar Mohammad Khan and Asif Karim of the Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz, Ashraf Ali of the JUI-F, Ammar Ahmad Khan, Ahmad Fahim Khan, Mohammad Ali Khan, Shah Faisal, Mohammad Tahir Khan and Nek Mohammad Khan applied for general seats as independent candidates. Robina Khalid of the PPP, independent candidates Tabinda Zafar and Begum Tahira Bukhari filed their papers for reserved women seats. PML-N Central General Secretary Engineer Iqbal Zafar Jhagra, Razaullah Khan of the ANP, Mohammad Ali Saif, and Mohammad Intikhab Khan filed their nomination papers for technocrats’ seats while Waqas Qayum Gill and Gul Zari Lal Singh submitted their papers for the minorities’ seat from KP. Meanwhile, PPP Balochistan President Mir Sadiq Ali Umrani said the party was in touch with allies to nominate joint candidates to get all 12 of their nominees elected unopposed. He said the party’s parliamentary board, headed by Faryal Talpur, had awarded party tickets to six candidates for the Senate elections in Balochistan. They included Sardar Fateh Mohammad Mohammad Hasni, Barrister Saifullah Khan Magsi, Mohammad Yousaf Baloch on general seats, Rozi Khan Kakar on technocrat seat, Perveen Mengal on women’s seat and Hina Gulzar on minorities’ seat.
us used 2005 earthquake to send killer-spies to Pakistan MONITORING DESK The Pentagon used the 2005 Kashmir earthquake to send operatives from the Joint Special Operations Command, or JSOC — the secretive, über-elite military unit that killed Osama bin Laden – to Pakistan, First Post said in an article, citing a new book. “The JSOC has proven to be the most lethal weapon in the president’s arsenal,” said DB Grady and Marc Ambinder in their just-published eBook, The Command: Deep Inside the President’s Secret Army, the report claimed. It quoted authors as saying in the book that President Obama and the Pentagon leadership had increasingly made Navy Seals from the JSOC their military tool of choice. “The JSOC’s counterterrorism units are credited with capturing or killing many of the most-wanted terrorists and insurgent leaders, including Saddam Hussein and Osama bin Laden,” the report added. According to The New York Times, the JSOC has about 54,000 active-duty personnel from four branches of the armed services. The Navy Seals are one of the most celebrated units under its umbrella. The book has been launched at a time when Admiral William H McRaven, who leads the JSOC, is pushing for a larger role for his elite units who have traditionally operated in the dark corners of American foreign policy. The book claims that JSOC had done more to degrade the capacity of terrorists to attack the United States than any other single entity. The report said the authors boldly charged that the US used the 2005 Kashmir earthquake to send JSOC operatives into Pakistan and that US intelligence community “took advantage of the chaos to spread resources of its own” into Pakistan. “Using valid US passports and posing as construction and aid workers, dozens of Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) operatives and contractors flooded in without the requisite background checks from Pakistan’s InterServices Intelligence (ISI),” the authors said. “Al Qaeda had reconstituted itself in the country’s tribal areas, largely because of the ISI’s benign neglect. In Afghanistan, the ISI was actively undermining the USbacked government of Hamid Karzai, training and recruiting for the Taliban, which it viewed as the more reliable partner. The political system was in chaos. The Pakistani Army was focused on the threat from India and had redeployed away from the Afghanistan border region, the Durand line, making it porous once again… A JSOC intelligence team slipped in alongside the CIA,” the book claims. The authors have detailed the JSOC team’s goals in Pakistan. One was prosaic: team members were to develop rings of informants to gather targeting information about al-Qaeda terrorists. Other goals were extremely sensitive: JSOC needed better intelligence about how Pakistan transported its nuclear weapons and it wanted to penetrate the ISI and target Pakistani officers who were hand-in-glove with the terrorists.“Under a secret program codenamed Screen Hunter, JSOC, augmented by the Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA) and contract personnel, was authorized to shadow and identify members of the ISI suspected of being sympathetic to al-Qaeda. It is not clear whether JSOC units used lethal force against these ISI officers; one official said that the goal of the program was to track terrorists through the ISI by using disinformation and psychological warfare,” reveals the book. The Obama administration finally curtailed the Screen Hunter programme after Pakistan slammed the covert US presence inside the country. Still, Pakistani outrage didn’t stop the JSOC from rotating teams of Navy Seals from DEVGRU Black squadron, aided by Rangers and other special operations forces, and establishing a parallel terroristhunting capability called ‘Vigilant Harvest’. “They operated in the border areas of Pakistan deemed off limits to Americans, and they targeted courier networks, trainers, and facilitators. (Legally, these units would operate under the authority of the CIA any time they crossed the border.),” said the book.
Editor: Arif Nizami, Executive Editor: Sarmad Bashir, Resident Editor: Rana Qaisar