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New provinces according to people’s wishes, not Makhdoom’s!
ECP chief says delimitation in Karachi unlikely before election
Govt was ready for crackdown on Qadri’s march: Shujaat
Rs 17.00 Vol iii no 207 19 pages islamabad — peshawar edition
Wednesday, 23 January, 2013 Rabiul awal 10, 1434
Election will be held on time...period!
ISLAMABAD KASHiF ABBASi
oLICE investigators probing into the mysterious death of National Accountability Bureau (NAB) official Kamran Faisal do not fully agree with the initial post mortem report and smelling a rat, say that circumstantial evidence is forcing them to cover all aspects of the high-profile case before arriving at a
Police decide to include in investigation NAB HR DG who allegedly pressurised deceased official
conclusion. “It will be premature to say anything about the real cause of death…but there are a lot of things that require being investigated as circumstantial evidences have been forcing us to cover all aspects of investigations,” a senior officer of Islamabad police said on condition of anonymity. The officer said so far it had been established that Faisal was being
pressurised by his bosses in the Rental Power Project case. Police also decided to question NAB HR Director General Kosar Iqbal, who allegedly pressurised Faisal in the case and sought affidavit from him of an earlier date. According to text message record of Faisal’s cell phone, he was under immense pressure by his bosses and the HR DG forced him to submit a blank affidavit of an earlier date. “The HR DG wanted
affidavit in back dates regarding request for transfer from the case,” said one of the messages sent by Faisal to his friend on January 16. It was also reported that Faisal was very concerned about his security. His fellows had also expressed concern about Faisal’s security in several text messages, in one of which his friend wished him good luck and prayed that God might free him of all worries. Continued on page 04
Prime Minister Raja Parvaiz Ashraf on Tuesday reiterated that the general election would be held on time by an independent Election Commission. Addressing participants of National Security and War Course at the National Defence University in Islamabad, the PM reaffirmed that the government was committed to holding free, fair and transparent election. He said the elected government was completing its tenure despite challenges and the nation was all poised for the general election. He called it “a defining moment” in national history and said the government had pursued a policy of strategic patience, toleration and reconciliation to lay a foundation for sustainable and stable political system in the country. Ashraf said the forces of doom and gloom thrived in an environment of chaos‚ uncertainty and instability and “we need to guard against all such forces which are out to derail the system so assiduously put in place after a protracted struggle”. The prime minister said the recent Indian adventures on the Line of Control and wave of terrorist attacks in the country amidst political flux ahead of national elections pointed towards the magnitude‚ scale and enormity of the challenges faced by the country. “Given the varied nature of challenges confronting the country‚ there is need to increase the frequency of such exercises so as to afford wider exposure to elements of national power.”
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Wednesday, 23 January, 2013
Pakistan debunks indian claim that UnMOGiP has no role
iNFotAiNMeNt Gamma-ray burst ‘hit earth in 8th Century’
Story on Page 09
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Former air chief marshal suffers brain haemorrhage LAHORE : Former air chief marshal Rao Qamar Suleman has suffered a brain haemorrhage. According to media reports, the former air chief marshal was immediately admitted to Combined Medical Hospital (CMH) in Lahore. He went into a comma due to haemorrhage and was being kept under continuous observation. Online
Four children die of measles in Miranshah MIRANSHAH : Measles claimed the lives of four children in Miranshah area of North Waziristan, media reports said on Tuesday. According to hospital sources, four children died of measles while hundreds were admitted in different hospitals for treatment. So far, at least 123 children lost their lives due to Measles in interior Sindh in the last one and a half month. Measles is caused by the measles virus; a single-stranded, negative-sense enveloped RNA virus of the genus Morbillivirus within the family Paramyxoviridae. Humans are the natural hosts of the virus; no animal reservoirs are known to exist. This highly contagious virus is spread by coughing and sneezing, via close personal contact or direct contact with secretions. Online
Kashmiris advised to prepare for nuclear war JAMMU: Police in Indian Kashmir have warned residents to build underground bunkers to prepare for a possible nuclear war in the disputed region, which is on edge after a string of deadly border clashes. The warning comes despite a ceasefire which took hold last week in the scenic Himalayan region, after the Indian and Pakistani armies agreed to halt cross-border firing that had threatened to unravel a fragile peace process. “If the blast wave does not arrive within five seconds of the flash you were far enough from the ground zero,” says the notice, headed “Protection against Nuclear, Biological and Chemical (NBC) Weapons”. It warns of “initial disorientation” from a nuclear attack, saying the blast may “carry away many prominent and familiar features”. The instructions were issued Monday in a local English-language Greater Kashmir newspaper by the State Disaster Response Force, which is part of the police. They vividly describe a nuclear war scenario to prepare residents to deal with “the initial shock wave”. The notice tells them to “wait for the winds to die down and debris to stop falling”. “Blast wind will generally end in one or two minutes after burst and burns, cuts and bruises are no different than conventional injuries. (The) dazzle is temporary and vision should return in few seconds,” it says. It tells residents to build basement shelters “where the whole family can stay for a fortnight” and stock them with non-perishable food. Police confirmed they issued the notice but said it “should not be connected with anything else”, in an apparent reference to border tension. The notice is part of regular year-round civil defence preparedness, Mubarak Ganai, deputy inspector general of civil defence in Kashmir police, told AFP. AGenCieS
Four soldiers injured in North Waziristan blast MIRANSHAH: At least four security personnel were injured when their vehicle was targeted with remote-controlled explosives in North Waziristan on Tuesday. officials said the army vehicle was traveling from Spinwam to Mir Ali when it was targeted with IED, adding that the vehicle was badly damaged. The injured were taken to the hospital and security forces launched a search operation in the area. inP
Govt was ready for crackdown on Qadri’s march: Shujaat LAHORE
AKISTAN Muslim League-Quaid (PMLQ) President Chaudhry Shujaat Hussain on Tuesday said there were confirmed reports that government had approved a crackdown against the long march staged by Dr Tahirul Qadri last week. Addressing a press conference, he said Interior Minister Rehman Malik was ready to conduct operation against long march participants on January 16, but he warned the government that his party would leave the coalition if any operation was carried out. Shujaat said President Asif Ali Zardari resolved the issue with sagacity and saved the country from a tragedy. He said the nation would have gone into chaos and unrest if any operation was carried out against the long march. Shujaat also praised the farsightedness and courage of Tahirul Qadri to resolve the issue through
negotiations. He dispelled the impression that the declaration that came out of the long march would not be implemented, saying seven federal ministers were signatories to the declaration and would help enforce the declaration. Shujaat said the meeting scheduled to take place this Sunday
in Lahore would chalk out a strategy to implement the decisions of the declaration. PML-Q leader Mushahid Hussain Sayyed said Dr Qadri was unwilling to sit for talks with anyone but the PML-Q. Shujaat added that all matters were being tackled amicably, adding that a survey was recently
conducted that unveiled the majority of Pakistanis wanted electoral reforms. To a query regarding the force behind the long march, Mushahid said conspiracy theories should end once and for all. He said the credit of negotiations went solely to the political leadership.
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Wednesday, 23 January, 2013
ARtS & eNteRtAiNMeNt
Paris fashion week kicks off
iran keen to do joint venture projects with Pakistan
Pakistan ready for South Africa test
eDitoRiAl A well worded speech: Not many takers for Obama’s promises though.
coMMeNt Dr Hasan Askari Rizvi says; Qadri and his ilk: The faltering state system gives enough space to such leaders to flourish.
Malik Muhammad Ashraf says; Pakistan, India and Kashmir: An out of the box solution is needed.
Story on Page 14
Story on Page 19
Story on Page 15
Articles on Page 10
New provinces according to people’s wishes, not Makhdoom’s! ISLAMABAD
ATIoNAL Assembly opposition Leader Chaudhry Nisar Ali Khan said on Tuesday that new provinces would not be formed according to the wishes of “a Makhdoom” but according to the wishes of the people. Speaking to reporters outside the Parliament, Nisar, a senior leader of the Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N), said the Pakistan People’s Party (PPP) was politicising the issue of formation of new provinces, and that the party and its “cronies” were not interested in forming provinces for
neW YORK: Un Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon speaks during the photographic exhibition ‘Pakistan for Peace’ at Un Headquarters. INP
Medical reports say Shahrukh Jatoi a minor
Medical tests carried out to verify the age of Shahrukh Jatoi, the key accused in the Shahzeb Khan murder case, have declared him a minor. A private TV channel reported on Tuesday that the reports, compiled by police surgeon Dr Jamil Qazi, were handed over to the investigation team probing into the murder case and would be submitted to an anti-terrorism court on Wednesday (today). Since, Shahrukh has been proven a minor, his case will now be referred to a juvenile court or a sessions court. According to the report, Shahrukh weighed 70 kilogrammes while his height was stated to be five feet and nine inches. Jatoi’s date of birth mentioned on the certificate was November 29, 1995. He was presented before the police surgeon’s office in Karachi on Monday upon court’s orders for the verification of his age by carrying out X-ray of different parts of his body. Additional Surgeon Dr Ejaz Ahmed shifted Shahrukh to the Civil Hospital for the X-ray, where the tests were carried out under the supervision of the police surgeon.
the two provinces. He further said that negotiations over the caretaker setup and smooth holding of general elections had been going on for the last two months and they were now reaching their logical conclusion. Nisar, while presenting this demands, said that the Punjab government would not let Tehreek-e-Minhajul Quran (TMQ) chief Dr Tahirul Qadri’s demands to be fulfilled unless PML-N’s demands were met. He
JUI-F continues Senate rant against Governor’s Rule in Balochistan g
The imposition of Governor’s Rule in Balochistan continued to be a heated point of discussion between the government and JUI-F in the Senate on Tuesday. The government came under fire in the Senate on Tuesday when members of the Senate crossed party lines to condemn the imposition of Governor’s Rule in Balochistan. Members from the ruling coalition joined the opposition in questioning the justification for the decision that sparked countrywide protests and took the political turmoil in the country to an alarming proportion. The members expressed their concern over the imposition of Governor’s Rule and efforts to conquer the major province by horse-trading and other negative methods. on a point of order, Maulana Abdul Ghafoor Haideri said the im-
position of Governor’s Rule was a big mistake, and exhibited the government’s ineffectiveness. Haideri warned that the country would head towards a disaster if no serious attempt was made to resolve the problem through the process of dialogue. He said the growing instability needed to be addressed on a war footing, adding that the fight between the PPP and PML-N could be fatal for the future of democracy. “Why has governor’s rule not been imposed in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa where law and order is going from bad to worse,” he questioned. He called for empowering institutions and suggested that members of the Senate should also be elected through direct elections. Haidri observed that a change of mindset on part of political leadership was needed as the country could not afford political confrontation at this juncture. The JUI-F leader said the president needed to immediately with-
draw the order of imposition of governor’s rule and requested other arties to also oppose the decision. He said the JUI-F had opposed the imposition of governor’s rule in Punjab as well despite being a coalition partner at that time. Haideri said until president withdrew his orders, the party would continue to protest against it in the Senate and would boycott the proceedings. He later walked out from the Senate proceedings along with other members. Speaking on the floor of the House‚ spokesperson for the president Farhatullah Babar clarified that governor’s rule had been imposed in Balochistan under Article 234(A) and (C) on the receipt of report from the governor of the province. He said under the article, the provincial government had not been dismissed. He said the decision regarding Balochistan was taken after consultation with chiefs of all political parties.
added that the PML-N feared that attempts were being made to delay the general elections. Stating the PML-N’s demands, he called for early elections, which he said should not be held in July. Nisar said the election campaigns were being delayed in order to prolong the election dates. Secondly, he said the time to scrutinise candidates should not be extended to one month. Lastly, he said that the candidates for a caretaker setup should also be nominated from Sindh and Balochistan. Nisar said that these two provinces should not be overlooked. The PML-N leader further said that the Punjab government would not dissolve assemblies until these conditions were met.
Bill moved to hold census every 10 years ISLAMABAD APP
Vows to keep boycotting proceedings until order is revoked ISLAMABAD
Shahzeb murder caSe
the people. The PML-N leader said that his party had initiated the idea of making new provinces, adding that new provinces would only be formed after the people of southern Punjab and Bahawalpur express their desire for them. “Provinces are not formed by sloganeering, but through the constitution and law,” he said, adding that a unanimous resolution had been passed in Punjab Assembly for making
Public Accounts Committee (PAC) member Yasmeen Rehman on Tuesday moved a bill in the National Assembly seeking to hold national census after every ten years. As the bill titled “General Statistics (Reorganisation) Bill 2013,” was not opposed by the government, NA Deputy Speaker Faisal Karim Kundi referred it to the standing committee concerned for consideration and reporting back to the House. Moving the bill in the House, the member said that census was imperative for judicious distribution of resources, seats allocation, collection of taxes, and to address other important matters. She said the first census in the country was held after 17 years, while over 13 years have passed since the last census was conducted. “This exercise will not only let us know about our actual population, but will also help allocate funds and other facilities to people judiciously,” she said, adding that regular census would also help government frame proper policies for provinces and development activities across the country on the basis of population. She further said that regular census would not need much funding, adding that without proper statistics about household and population, all policies and projects would be based on assumptions and not reality.
NAB, FIA given two days to arrest OGRA chief ISLAMABAD APP
Legal experts of National Accountability Bureau (NAB) and Federal Investigation Agency (FIA) on Tuesday requested the Supreme Court to grant two days time for the arrest of former chairman of oil and Gas Regulatory Authority (oGRA) Tauqeer Sadiq and a few others who were allegedly involved in embezzlement of Rs 82 billion. The two-judge bench comprising Justice Jawwad S Khawaja and Justice Khilji Arif Hussain started hearing on a pending case of the arrest of Tauqeer Sadiq. NAB Legal Director Azam Khan informed the court that NAB had written two letters to Interpol for the arrest of Tauqeer Sadiq. He apprised the court that the bu-
reau also wrote a letter to the UAE foreign office and requested the deportation of Tauqeer’s arrest. He stated that the former oGRA chief had been spotted in UAE and now it was the duty of Foreign office to exert pressure on the UAE government for his arrest. on this, Justice Jawwad S Khawaja remarked that it was not the duty of the courts to put pressure and added that this should be done by the
NAB. J u s t i c e Khawaja said the case was of huge importance, so the court would dispose it within days and would not take months on it. He said a person was roaming freely after fleeing away with Rs 82 billion from the national exchequer. He added that there were many things which the court does not want to highlight because it would malign many people. Justice Khawaja asked the NAB
official that how would he like to be treated as the court would not let the absconder escape. Samina Marri, the wife of an official of oGRA, submitted in the court that her husband, who had flown away to Switzerland, wanted to return to his country and surrender before the law. She said that her family was affected due to NAB’s policy of `pick and choose’ which only targeted small officers and did not tighten its grip on the “big wigs”. “My entire family is going through mental torture and we want to get rid of this situation,” she said. The court remarked that as both NAB and FIA had requested for some more time to comply with the orders of the arrest of Tauqeer Sadiq, the case should be adjourned till January 24.
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Wednesday, 22 January, 2013
TCP chief transferred for ‘resisting pressure on appointments’ KARACHI AHIR Raza Naqvi, former chief executive of the Trading Corporation of Pakistan (TCP), appears to be the first victim for resisting pressure on making appointments, as the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) banned fresh inductions in public sector entities at federal and provincial levels. Strongly wary of the prepoll rigging, the ECP on Monday barred the country’s federal and provincial authorities from making appointments in any of the public sector organisations ahead of the general elections. However, sources said that it was too late for Naqvi, who has been resisting pressure from higher ups for making inductions in the corporation on political basis. “Thousands of such job applications are still pending at the TCP,” claimed sources privy to the matter. Monday, the day the ECP issued directives against further appointments, saw Naqvi transferred by the federal government to Islamabad as the additional secretary of Kashmir affairs.
Shia doctor gunned down in Peshawar
Pakistan to take up drone attacks with US: Hina
T FAiSAlABAD: A doctor checks patients outside the OPD of Allied Hospital as Young Doctors Association continued with their strike on Tuesday. ONLINe
Constitution to be followed while implementing long march declaration: Naik ISLAMABAD APP
Law Minister Farooq H Naik on Tuesday said that law and constitution would be followed while implementing the Tehreek-e-Minhajul Quran’s (TMQ) long march declaration. Talking to reporters outside the Parliament House, he said the declaration singed by the government and TMQ chief Dr Tahirul Qadri would be implemented. He said the meeting scheduled to take place on Sunday in Lahore would discuss the issues related to the declaration. To a question, he said the government,
Pakistani writers should not attend Jaipur Lit Festival, BJP warns NEW DELHI AGenCieS
As India returned Pakistani artists and athletes back home following the Line of Control tension between the two countries, the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) has warned that Pakistani writers should not Jaipur Literature Festival, Times of India (ToI) reported on Tuesday. According to the report, the work of seven Pakistani authors including Jamil Ahmad and Mohammed Hanif are shortlisted for the 2013 Prize for South Asian Literature. Ahmad and Hanif had attended the JLF last year but because of the recent cross-border conflict, the BJP has decided to oppose the presence of these writers. “We will not allow them to enter the festival venue. There is no question of welcoming the Pakistani authors here at a time when their country has disrupted peace at the border,” said BJP Yuva Morcha state president Rishi Bansal.
coalition partners and Qadri had signed the agreement, adding that opposition parties had no link with it. In response to another
question, he said that governor’s rule had been imposed in Balochistan under Article 234 (A) and (C) after receiving a report from the
governor of the province. He said that under the article the provincial government had not been dismissed, and the provincial assembly and courts were still functioning. He said the decision regarding Balochistan was taken after consultation with the heads of all other political parties. To a question, he said no date had been finalised to dissolve the assemblies. He said the chief ministers had the powers to dissolve their respective assemblies. “If it has been decided to hold elections on one day than the CMs of all provinces have to dissolve the assemblies to make it possible,” he said.
Qadri says he and his family won’t take part in elections LAHORE AGenCieS
Tehreek-e-Minhajul Quran (TMQ) chief Dr Tahirul Qadri on Tuesday reiterated that he and his entire family would not contest the upcoming general elections. Addressing a news conference at Minhajul Quran’s secretariat, he said that he, his sons and family members would not take part in the elections. “My daughters and daughters-in-law will also not take part in the general elections,” he said.
However, the Pakistan Awami Tehreek (PAT) is free to decide whether it wants to take part in the electoral process or not, he added. Replying to a query regarding the validity of the agreement struck with the government before ending the long march, Qadri said the agreement had been made with the government. Whether the current regime stays in power or not, the agreement will remain intact, he added. Qadri said had the army intervened in the long
march, neither democracy nor peace could have been saved. He said people were increasingly getting disappointed with the prevalent system in Pakistan, adding that democracy should have a mechanism of auto-accountability. The responsibility for everything cannot be attributed to the previous governments, he added. He said that his long march was “cent percent successful,” adding that people had become aware of their political rights after the long march.
The plot thickens Continued fRom page 01
Police sources were of the view that if it was established that Faisal committed suicide, the HR DG and other responsible could be charged under Section 316 of the Pakistan Penal Code for asserting undue pressure on Faisal. The other day, police
came to know that Faisal had been receiving psychological treatment at Poly Clinic Hospital from Dr Najma Aziz. on Tuesday, Dr Najma recorded her statement and told police that Faisal was not a psychological patient, as he came for checkup only once and after finding him in stress, she prescribed
some pills for him. She clarified that Faisal was not psychological patient. Meanwhile, police also learnt that in the last few months, Faisal visited Poly Clinic four times for routine checkup and in all of the visits he only consulted general physicians, who usually prescribed Aspirin and Panadol
tacit opposition to rehiring of the employees of now-defunct Pakistan Rice Corporation, TCP’s erstwhile entity. The former employees had availed the “golden handshake” under previous government’s voluntary retirement scheme. “Ramazan, a former CBA leader at the TCP, had gone to the court against the then TCP management, which wanted to merge those staffers into the TCP on political grounds,” said an insider. The source also claimed that Naqvi had an undeclared support for Ramazan’s drive against the illegal rehiring of those who had availed the golden handshake. Despite repeated attempts, the former TCP chairman could not be approached for comments. A TCP spokesperson, however, said that Naqvi’s transfer was part of routine transfers of the civil servants who, according to him, “keep coming and going” when the government wanted them to. The spokesman said the ball was in the commerce ministry’s court to propose three names for filling the vacant slot. He said that TDAP chief Abid Javed Akbar would be officiating as an additional charge of the corporation.
A TCP spokesman confirmed that Abid Javed Akbar, chief executive of the Trade Development Authority of Pakistan (TDAP), had been given the additional charge of the TCP on ad-hoc basis. “The commerce ministry will now notify three names for the top slot at the TCP,” the spokesman added. Sources went on to claim that the former TCP chief was removed over his refusal to succumb to pressure from his higher ups in the Pakistan People’s Party (PPP)-dominated federal government to induct people on political basis. The ECP, in its Monday’s observation, had termed such inductions as a sort of pre-poll rigging which could significantly influence the results of the forthcoming general election in favour of the ruling parties. Sources alleged that Khursheed Shah, the PPP’s chief whip in the National Assembly, had been tasked with the job of ensuring as many politically-influenced recruitments in the public sector entities as he could before the polls. Naqvi, dubbed as an upright man by a TCP insider, had also attracted the ire of the federal government for his
PESHAWAR STAFF RePORT
Foreign Minister Hina Rabbani Khar said on Tuesday that Pakistan would take up the issue of drone attacks with the United States. Speaking on the floor of the House‚ Khar said that Pakistan considers US drone strikes on its tribal areas a violation of its sovereignty. She said the government had repeatedly raised concerns on drone strikes, which were proving counter-productive in the war
against terrorism. She said that according to the emerging opinion in the entire world, as well as the US, drone attacks are considered counter-productive. The world is also raising concerns on civilian casualties in the drone strikes. About reports that Washington had prepared a new drone policy‚ the foreign minister said, “We have no clarification from the US in this regard. These are just media reports but we take up this issue with Washington and its ambassador to Pakistan.”
A doctor was gunned down in Peshawar on Tuesday at his clinic in Liaqat Bazaar, Saddar in an apparent sectarian killing. Eyewitnesses said that they heard several gunshots minutes after three men entered Dr Shah Nawaz Ali’s clinic. When they rushed to the clinic, they found him dead with a bullet wound to his head. The attackers managed to flee after the incident. Dr Shah Nawaz belonged to a prominent Shia family of the walled city of Peshawar and was said to be a relative of SP Hilal Haider who was killed in a suicide attack in the Qisakhawani Bazaar last year. In the past few months, several Shia Muslims have been targeted including Dr Riaz Hussain, a prominent Shia leader from Parachinar Kurram Agency who was also the president of Pakistan People’s Party (PPP) Kurram Agency chapter. Additional Session Judge Ihtisham Ali was also attacked but was lucky enough to escape the assassination attempt in Hayatabad, only sustaining minor injuries.
KARACHI: Former minister for privatisation Ghous Bakhsh Mahar of the Pakistan Muslim League-Quaid has announced joining Pir Pagara’s Pakistan Muslim League-Functional (PML-F). In November 2012, Mahar was shown the door by Prime Minister Raja Pervez Ashraf for reasons not announced. The minister, however, said he himself had resigned from the ministry in protest against the controversial Sindh Local Government Act of 2012. PML-Q’s parliamentary leader in the Sindh Assembly, Shaharyar Mahar is also likely to join the PML-F whose chief Pir Pagara on Monday joined hands with the Jamiat Ulema-e-Islam-Fazl (JUIF) for the upcoming general elections in Sindh. Online
tablets for him. The investigators also got close circuit camera recording from Serena Hotel, which is situated near Federal Lodges, the place of Faisal’s purported suicide. on Tuesday, police also recorded the statement of NAB Deputy Director Asghar Khan and NAB Sub-Inspector Mumtaz, who was the first to report the incident. They also questioned a NAB peon, who broke into Faisal’s room and found him
hanging from a ceiling fan. Faisal, a deputy director in NAB, was investigating the Rs 22 billion Rental Power Project scam and was found hanging from the ceiling fan in his official residence on Friday. His death came three days after the Supreme Court verdict that ordered NAB to arrest Prime Minister Raja Pervaiz Ashraf and 15 others in connection with the RPP scandal. Commenting on the
PML-Q’s Ghous Bakhsh Mahar joins PML-F
case in a TV talk show, NAB chief Admiral Fasih Bokhari said that NAB would conduct an investigation of its own if the police probe was found unsatisfactory. Bokhari denied that he and Kosar Iqbal had pressed Faisal to change his affidavit. “We only asked him to write a statement requesting that he should be withdrawn from the enquiry as he was going through mental stress. This is the only communication we had with him,” he claimed.
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NA questions HEC’s Rs 1.1 million budget n
NA asks Ministry of Education to present a report n HEC says govt trying to undermine its economy ISLAMABAD STAFF RePORT
HE National Assembly on Tuesday directed the Ministry of Education and Training to submit a report regarding the payment of Rs 1.1 million by the Higher Education Commission (HEC), to obtain an Islamabad Club membership for its chairman and foreign trips for officers. Education and Training Minister Sheikh Waqas Akram said the HEC chairman had opted to go to the National Defence College instead of responding to the notice sent by the parliament. Chairperson Yasmeen Rehman termed that a breach of the House. Akram said around Rs 40 billion had been annually allocated to the HEC, but whenever the government questioned its expenditures, HEC officials had propagated that as an attempt to undermine the HEC’s autonomy. He said the commission had
violated several rules of the Establishment Division, and references had also been filed against officers, but no action had been taken. The minister said the HEC chairman must be punished and requested the chair to issue directions in this regard. He said the Islamabad Club membership had not been included in the perks and privi-
leges entitled to the chairman. He said the prime minister had questioned the commission regarding their foreign trips, but they had not responded. He said that appointment on the MP scale was illegal, as had been notified by the Establishment Division during Pervez Musharaf’s tenure. He said only the prime minister had the au-
Low government oversight in girls’ primary schools: report ISLAMABAD STAFF RePORT
Around 105 schools, out of the 170 government girls’ primary schools monitored, had not received any oversight visitations by government or elected officials during September-November 2012, said a Free and Fair Election Network (FAFEN) report. The report released on Tuesday, highlighted that of the 71 government oversight visits made to 65 monitored schools, 31 had been made by the education executive district officer and one by a member provincial assembly. The rest of the 39 visitations had been made by other government and elected officials. While most of these were monitoring and routine visits, the lack of certain facilities in primary schools calls for more frequent and informed
oversight, said the report. The support staff necessary for day to day functioning was not available in most of the monitored schools, sanitary workers had not been present in 160 schools, 108 schools had no peons and 106 schools did not have a security guard. Despite the absence of sanitary workers in 160 schools, classrooms in 155 schools had been clean, indicating that either the school administrations had made alternate arrangements, or the responsibility for cleaning classrooms had been taken up by teachers and students themselves. Classrooms in 70 schools lacked desks and benches for students, while there was no sitting arrangement for teachers in 13 schools. Around 96 schools did not have a playground for students, while 135 schools required a staffroom for
teachers. on a positive note, 168 schools had been housed in proper buildings and 157 schools had boundary walls. Almost all schools also provided free text books to students. With regard to staff appointment, the occupancy rate was 92 percent for sanctioned teaching posts and 93 percent for non-teaching ones. Attendance in schools was also satisfactory, as more than 76 percent teachers and students had been present in four-fifth of all schools. The average number of students-per-teacher in all monitored schools was 35, and below the set limit of 40 for primary schools. KP had the highest number of students-per-teacher (40), followed by Punjab (38), FATA (36) and Balochistan (32). The number was impressive in schools monitored in Sindh, where one teacher was available for every 29 students.
Over 45 schools functioning in residential houses in asghar mall Scheme ISLAMABAD: Due to lax oversight by the Rawalpindi Development Authority (RDA), over 45 schools have been operating in the Asghar Mall Scheme, a residential housing scheme, without paying a commercialisation fee to the authority. The Asghar Mall Scheme has turned into a commercial hub as over 45 private schools, beauty parlours, clinics, workshops and other commercial activities are being carried out
without paying commercialisation fees which inflicts huge monetary losses to the RDA. Sources said that influential people have illegally setup gardens in front of their houses on government land and others have installed two to three gates, which is illegal. RDA officials merely serve notices to violators for defying rules and regulations but don’t take strict action to curb commercial activity in residential areas. S TA F F R e PO RT
thority to recruit officials on the Mp scale, but HEC officials had been granting themselves that privilege, along with repeated extensions. He said the ministry had directed the HEC to recover the amount spent on such officers, and references had also been forwarded to the National Accountability Bureau. Nawab Abdul Ghani Talpur requested the government to place the HEC chairman on the Exit Control List as he was dual national. He added that the NAB should be directed to probe into the matter. Akram said even private universities had received huge funding from the HEC in connivance with its officers and mentioned a project the HEC was going to approve for the Beaconhouse University. Abdul Ghafoor Chaudhry said the parliament could question all entities it had approved funding for. The minister said the government wanted to make the HEC stronger, but it had the right to question its expenditures.
Wednesday, 23 January, 2013
PTI demands justice for the 18 killed in Bara ISLAMABAD STAFF RePORT
Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) Chairman Imran Khan has expressed deep anger over the brutal killing of 18 young men in mysterious conditions during the Bara operation, and asked KP Governor Barrister Masood Kausar to play his due role in bringing the assassins to justice. In a letter to the governor, Khan expressed dismay over the apathy and silence of the federal and KP governments for not taking action against those responsible for killing 18 citizens in the Khyber Agency. Khan called upon the KP governor to conduct a thorough probe into the matter and bring the culprits to book. Khan said the alleged killing of 18 civilians by government officials had triggered protests which had caused anger and fury among the masses. He expressed apprehension and said such incidents had hurt public sentiments and the situation could lead to further chaos and turmoil in the country. PTI leader Mian Mahmood-
ur-Rasheed on Tuesday said that clean and transparent elections were the only option to save democracy in the country. In a statement, he claimed that people from all walks of life were joining hands with Imran Khan, adding that PTI would defeat all its political rivals in the upcoming general elections. He alleged that the provincial government had been using ‘official resources’ to benefit Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) supporters. He criticised the laptop scheme, saying that it would not prove helpful in the election campaign.
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Wednesday, 23 January, 2013
WHAT ARE YOU LOOKING AT?: A monkey sits near a board at Daman-e-Koh View Point. ONLINe
Transporters violating designated routes ISLAMABAD
everal commuters travelling between the twin cities have complained that public transporters do not comply with the official fare list or stick to their designated routes. Commuters have complained that transporters have been digressing from their routes to earn extra money from passengers. They have been forcing commuters to pay double fare for an incomplete route, even
Notices issued to demolish 15 illegal constructions RAWALPINDI: The Rawal Town Municipal Administration (RTMA) on Tuesday issued notices to owners of 15 buildings that were being constructed in violation of approved maps in different localities of the city. owners have been told to demolish these illegal constructions, or the RTMA Enforcement Directorate would have to take action. According to an RTMA spokesman, Administrator Saif Anwar Jappa had directed the authority to take stern action against violators of building by-laws in residential and commercial areas. He said the administrator had visited Dhoke Ratta, Dhoke Mangtal, Saidpur road, Satellite Town and Muslim Town, along with Superintendent Parvez Mughal, Inspector Nazirzada and other staff members on Tuesday for inspection, where they found operational commercial units in residential areas. APP
Police nabs 11 ISLAMABAD: The police have arrested 11 criminals, including two women, and recovered 3kg charas, 1kg heroin, two bottles of wine, as well as weapons, ammunition and unauthorised pistols from their possession. According to a police spokesman, the police have also arrested 7 criminals during search operations in various localities of the city. He said the Tarnol Police had arrested six criminals including Shams-ul-Qamar Malik Mudsir, Attatullah Khan, Lal Bechia, and two women, Gul Khuram and Sania. Around 1.40kg heroin, 3.450kg charas and weapons had been recovered from them. STAFF RePORT
after a recent increase in fares by the Regional Transport Authority. Commuters said they had been facing problems on routes including 1, 1-C, 3, 111, 121, 136, 24, 21 and 127. They said there should be an effective mechanism to ensure route completion by transporters and the commuters’ grievances should be addressed on priority. Commuters said the authorities should take stern action against transporters involved in this practice. A commuter, Iqbal Chaudhry at the Khanna-
pul Stop said, “I boarded a wagon on route 21, the conductor said they would only go as far as Faizabad, and when I asked him to complete the route, he used harsh language.” The same vehicle then departed for Islamabad after charging double fare from passengers, he alleged. An Islamabad Traffic Police official said a system to check non-completion of routes, by public transport drivers, was already in place. Commuters could complain to on-duty officials observing duties on main roads of the city, he added.
Students receive training on peace building ISLAMABAD STAFF Re PO RT
The PAIMAN Alumni Trust, in collaboration with the European Union (EU), arranged a five-day training workshop to sensitise the youth of KP and FATA on peace building. The project titled “Waging Peace: Piece by Piece”, aimed to build the capacity of communities, including the youth, to contribute to building peace in KP and FATA regions. It has been designed to build capacity for effectively engaging with local policymakers, students, mothers and women from Peshawar. The main emphasis has been on providing participants with insight into conflict transformation and peace building techniques, so people can engage in mainstream decision-making
processes to find effective solutions to disputes at the grassroots levels, said a press release. PAIMAN Executive Director Mossarat Qadeem said, “The youth of KP and FATA are at the fore of a courageous struggle to restore peace, democracy and progress in their homeland.” He said, “The local youth has tremendous potential for effective leadership and social transformation which needs to be harnessed by women and policy makers to build community-level and sustainable peace in the region.” Participants appreciated the knowledge and skills they have gained during the workshop, and expressed solid resolve to apply alternative ways to resolve disputes in their communities.
Delhi dialogue deliberates over Indo-Pak ties ISLAMABAD STAFF RePORT
The Delhi Dialogue, comprising 30 participants from India and Pakistan, deliberated on a variety of bilateral issues at a two-day conference. Key areas of discussion entailed review of bilateral relations, trade, extremism and terrorism, higher education and the Jammu and Kashmir dispute, said a press release issued on Tuesday by the Jinnah Institute. Participants included retired diplomats, academicians, civil society activists, media
personnel from both sides. This dialogue series had begun in 2011. It maintains that increased people to people contact generates the momentum for policy change and allows key stakeholders on both sides to devise strategies for peace and regional cooperation. Participants unanimously agreed that 2012 had been a year of progress for Indo-Pak relations, during which the robustness of the India-Pakistan dialogue had been tested. Despite challenges to the process, considerable headway had been made on issues of trade and visa liberalisation.
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Wednesday, 23 January, 2013
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REVENTABLE diseases like measles and polio are on the upswing in Pakistan after years of decline, mainly due to growing wariness of vaccines — or, more specifically, wariness of the programs and people that administer those vaccines, according to a report by Think Progress. In a continuation of violence in December that saw the murder of six aid workers on the streets of Pakistan’s cities, another seven civilians have been killed since the start of 2013. All but one of those killed on Jan. 1 were female, continuing a disturbing trend of gender disparity in those targeted. All seven of the most recent victims, five teachers and two health providers, were Pakistani nationals working at a community center providing health and education services in remote northern Pakistan. These attacks are taking a toll on the health and well-being of Pakistan’s children, with easily treatable diseases making a pronounced comeback. Measles in particular has seen an amazing surge. According to the World Health (WHo) the number of measles cases in Pakistan has surged from 4,000 in 2011 to 14,000 in 2012. 306 died of the disease in 2012, compared to only 64 in 2011. The increase has prompted the WHo to launch an emergency vaccina-
tion campaign in the Sindh state, where the outbreak has been particularly severe. In an interview with al Jazeera, Dr Zulfiqar Ahmed Bhutta, a child health expert said that the outbreak could have easily been foreseen: “This was a tragedy that was waiting to happen. We have been predicting for a while now that without adequate cover with routine immunisation in many parts of Pakistan, notably in rural populations, that there was bound to be a situation where you would have an outbreak like this …. So what
we are seeing this year is an absolute reflection of dropping the ball in covering an adequate cohort of children in rural and poor populations of Pakistan, particularly in the south, against a completely preventable disorder like measles.“ A large part of the opposition to vaccine campaigns can be traced back to the United States’ decision to use one as cover for obtaining proof that osama bin Laden was living within the Pakistani city of Abottabod. In the months and years since, aid workers
in Pakistan have faced growing violence while attempting to inoculate those most vulnerable from diseases that have long since been wiped out in other countries. According to the report, over 35% of Pakistanis do not have access to safe drinking water. The report revealed that the quality of water available for drinking is low. A number of water samples have ben found contaminated with bacterial contamination, arsenic, fluoride and nitrate. The vast majority of the population does not have access to safe drinking water, due to which incidence of waterborne diseases is increasing rapidly. According to official sources in the Ministry of Science and Technology, high population growth rate, urbanisation, industrialisation and new environmental constraints are aggravating the problem. Pakistan’s estimated current per capita water availability of around 1,066 M3, places it in the “high water stress” category, said an official. Due to increased demand of water for irrigation, industry and public use, the per capita water availability will be further reduced to 858 M3 by 2025, the official added. The ST&I Policy 2012 suggests legislation to ensure compliance with standards for drinking water by individuals and institutions. The policy also recommends development of inexpensive desalination techniques.
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USSIA is sending two planes to Lebanon to evacuate more than 100 of its citizens from Syria, the Emergencies Ministry said, in the clearest sign yet that Moscow may be preparing for President Bashar al-Assad’s possible defeat. “on orders from the leadership of the Russian Federation, the Emergencies Ministry is sending two airplanes to Beirut (on Tuesday) so that all Russians who want can leave Syria,” ministry spokeswoman Irina Rossius said. “It is planned that more that 100 Russians will leave Syria (on these planes),” she told Interfax news agency. It was unclear whether the flights were the beginning of a longer evacuation operation. Russia has been Assad’s main foreign protector during a 22-month uprising against his rule, but a diplomat conceded last month the government had lost territory and the rebels fighting Assad could win the war. Moscow is also carrying out what has been called the largest naval exercises since the 1991 fall of the Soviet Union in the Mediterranean and Black Sea, including off Syria’s coast, which analysts say are meant to underscore its interest in the region. Preparing to fly
Turkish man charged in France PKK murders PARIS: Prosecutors in France are reported to have filed preliminary murder and terrorism charges against a Turkish citizen who worked as a driver for one of three Kurdish activists who were killed in Paris earlier this month. The suspect, identified as omer Guney, 30, drove for the most prominent victim, Sakine Cansiz, a woman in her 50s who helped found the Kurdistan Workers Party, or PKK, an armed group seeking autonomy for Turkey’s Kurds. The other two victims were identified as Leyla Soylemez and Fidan Dogan, Kurdish activists in their 20s. Guney has told investigators he has been a member of the PKK for two years, Francois Molins, prosecutor, said on Monday. Guney has denied all the charges. There is “serious and corroborating evidence” to show that Guney had a role in the January 9 killings, Molins said. The preliminary charges of murder in connection with a terrorist operation and conspiracy were filed against Guney, who is being detained, Molins said. Guney was one of two ethnic Kurds detained by French authorities last week. The other man has been released without charge. Monday’s move opens the way to a fuller investigation which would lead to formal charges, if sufficient evidence is found. If there is not enough evidence to support suspicions, the preliminary charges will be dropped. AGenCieS
Wednesday, 23 January, 2013
out its citizens is the clearest signal yet that Moscow believes Assad’s fall may be possible, though it has made no indication that it will abandon its position that Assad’s exit must not be a precondition for a peace deal. Moscow leases a naval maintenance and supply facility at the Syrian port of Tartous and has had a large presence of employees from Rosoboronexport, Russia’s state arms exporting monopoly. A number of citizens from Russian companies that also have a presence in Syria still live there too. Russian officials say there are tens of thousands of Russian citizens in Syria, many of them also Russian women married to Syrian men. Meanwhile, around 5,900 Syrian refugees crossed into Jordan in the last 24 hours, according to border police, the Petra state news agency reported on Tuesday morning. Around 200,000 Syrians have entered Jordan legally since the start of the revolution and have rented homes or moved in with relatives. Jordan is concerned about this large influx in light of little assistance provided from the international community to host them. ‘DEEP DISAPPOINTMENT’: Meanwhile, UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon and UN-Arab League mediator Lakhdar Brahimi “deep disappointment and anguish” by the continued bloodshed in Syria, the UN press office said. “They also expressed their consternation about the
lack of a unified international posture that could lead to a transition as agreed at Geneva last June and put an end to the desperate suffering of the Syrian people,” it said in a statement. Ban and Brahimi met in New York to discuss Syria. Brahimi has been trying to help Russia and the United States break their deadlock on Syria which has prevented the UN Security Council from taking any meaningful action on the conflict. Russia and China have vetoed three council resolutions condemning Syria’s government over the conflict, and reject the idea of sanctioning President Bashar al-Assad’s government. Separately, John Ging, a senior official with the UN office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs, visited the battled-scarred Syrian city of Homs on Monday, UN spokesman Martin Nesirky told reporters. Ging led a delegation of seven UN humanitarian agencies. The United Nations had coordinated with both the government and the Syrian opposition for the visit, Nesirky said. He said the delegation was in Syria to assess humanitarian needs and find ways to improve access to people in need throughout the country. Members of the delegation were shocked by what they saw in Talbiseh and Homs, Nesirky said. “It is planned that more that 100 Russians will leave Syria (on these planes),” she told Interfax news
Calm returns to Eritrea after siege ends ASMARA AGenCieS
Eritrea’s government has said the capital Asmara is “calm” a day after armed mutineers seized the information ministry, with opposition sites saying the stand-off was settled. “All is calm today, as it was indeed yesterday,” Yemane Gebremeskel, the director of Eritrean President Issaias Afeworki’s office, said on Tuesday. A group of dissident Eritrean soldiers laid siege to the information ministry on Monday, forcing state media to announce a call for the release of political prisoners. The renegade soldiers forced the director of state television to make an announcement, a senior Eritrean intelligence official said. “The soldiers have forced him to speak on state TV, to say the Eritrean government should release all political prisoners,” the source said on condition of anonymity. Reports from Eritrea are difficult to independently verify, as the country restricts access to foreign media. Selam Kidane, an Eritrean human rights activist and director of human rights organisation, Release Eritrea, told AlJazeera that details of what had happened were still unclear. “After those announcements were made, the state TV and radio were taken off air for about four hours,” Kidane said. “Early in the day, not many people had a clue as to what was going on - but electrical outages happen, so people were not surprised.” ‘MUTINEERS SURRENDERED’: opposition website Awate.com, based in the United States but with close connections inside Eritrea, said that the commander of around 100 rebel soldiers had agreed to surrender.
“The face-off was ‘solved’ when the government ‘accepted his terms’” Awate said, although there were no further details as to what will happen next. The reports were impossible to confirm, and it was not clear if the mutineers had formally surrendered. The state-run Eri-TV television and radio broadcasts were taken off air on Monday, but resumed broadcasting on Tuesday, several sources said. “Eri-TV, under regime loyalists, has resumed broadcasting live,” Awate added. “All Ministry of Information employees have been released.” Multiple sources reported that one of those held inside the information ministry was the daughter of Issaias, who has ruled the Horn of Africa nation with an iron grip from independence in 1993, following an epic 30-year liberation war from neighbouring Ethiopia. Kidane said that those that took part in this operation were not senior personnel, but young people fed up with the situation in the country. “These were not army officers, these were young soldiers - new recruits and those who were forced into the army,” she said. “Instead of young people fleeing the country and is in the past, they are now standing up and acting.” Awate claimed the mutineers were led by an army commander called Saleh osman, a hero of the bloody 1998-2000 border war with Ethiopia, when he refused orders to abandon the key southern port of Assab, defending it and beating back invading Ethiopians. “The ‘uprising’ appears to have been a case of Saleh osman trying to jolt back negotiations for democratisation he had been having with the president’s office that have stalled,” Awate added.
agency. It was unclear whether the flights were the beginning of a longer evacuation operation. Russia has been Assad’s main foreign protector during a 22-month uprising against his rule, but a diplomat conceded last month the government had lost territory and the rebels fighting Assad could win the war. Moscow is also carrying out what has been called the largest naval exercises since the 1991 fall of the Soviet Union in the Mediterranean and Black Sea, including off Syria’s coast, which analysts say are meant to underscore its interest in the region. Preparing to fly out its citizens is the clearest signal yet that Moscow believes Assad’s fall may be possible, though it has made no indication that it will abandon its position that Assad’s exit must not be a precondition for a peace deal. Moscow leases a naval maintenance and supply facility at the Syrian port of Tartous and has had a large presence of employees from Rosoboronexport, Russia’s state arms exporting monopoly. A number of citizens from Russian companies that also have a presence in Syria still live there too. Russian officials say there are tens of thousands of Russian citizens in Syria, many of them also Russian women married to Syrian men.
Israelis vote in general elections TEL AvIv: Voting has begun in Israel’s general elections, which are expected to return Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu to a third term with a smaller majority in a coalition government of rightwing and religious parties. Security has been tightened across the country for Tuesday’s polls, which began at 7am (5:00GMT), and more than 20,000 police officers have been deployed to secure the vote. opinion polls predict that Netanyahu’s Likud party, which has forged an electoral pact with the ultra-nationalist Yisrael Beitenu group, will take the most seats in the parliamentary election. But no Israeli party has ever secured an absolute majority, meaning that Netanyahu, who says that dealing with Iran’s nuclear ambitions is his top priority, will have to bring various allies on board to control the 120-seat Knesset. Netanyahu has vowed to pursue the Jewish settlement of lands seized during the 1967 Middle East war if he stays in power, a policy that would push Israel away from peace with the Palestinians, put it at odds with Washington, and deepen the country’s international isolation. The next government is also facing challenges at home, including a major budget crisis and looming austerity cuts which are likely to exacerbate already widespread discontent over spiralling prices and the cost of living. AGenCieS
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Wednesday, 23 January, 2013
Pakistan debunks Indian claim that UNMOGIP has no role g
Pak envoy says no bilateral agreement has overtaken or affected role or legality of uNMoGiP UNITED NATIONS
A K I S T A N rejected an Indian argument in the Security Council on Monday that the role of United Nations Military observers Group in India Pakistan (UNMoGIP), which monitors ceasefire along the Line of Control in disputed Kashmir, has been overtaken by the 1972 bilateral Simla agreement, saying the group’s mandate remained “fully valid, relevant and operative”. “No bilateral agreement between India and Pakistan has overtaken or affected the role or legality of UNMoGIP,” Pakistani Ambassador Masood Khan told the 15-nation council after his Indian counterpart Hardeep Singh Puri questioned the status of the 42member observer group in the course of a debate on UN peacekeeping. The open day-long debate was convened by Pakistan, which holds the presidency of the Security
Council for the month of January. “The United Nations Military observer Group in India and Pakistan (UNMoGIP) continues to monitor the ceasefire in accordance with the resolutions of the UN Security Council,” Khan added. The Indian ambassador raised the issue after Pakistan’s Foreign Secretary Jalil Abbas Gilani, who
presided over the council meeting, underscored the “important role” UNMoGIP has played in monitoring peace along the LoC. As Ambassador Khan set the record straight, another Indian delegate challenged Pakistan’s stand. Manish Gupta, a counsellor at the Indian Mission to the UN, said that UNMoGIP had been put
in place to supervise the ceasefire line as result of the 1949 Karachi agreement. That ceasefire line no longer existed; the new one was established on December 17, 1971 and followed by an agreement between the two countries in 1972, which settled their issues by peaceful means through bilateral negotiations, he said.
News 09 Polio immunisation counters to be set up at airports ISLAMABAD: The government has planned to set up polio vaccination counters at airports to ensure that the children leaving the country are vaccinated against the polio virus. According to official sources, the steps were taken as a preemptive measure to reduce the possibility of spread of the polio virus beyond Pakistan’s borders. Sources said Prime Minister’s Polio Monitoring and Coordination Cell had advised all provincial governments and the federal administration to set up permanent polio vaccination counters inside international departure lounges of all airports. The cell had already asked the Sindh Government to improve its polio immunisation efforts on an emergency basis to stop transmission of the polio virus in the province. The Prime Minister’s Focal Person on Polio Eradication, Shahnaz Wazir Ali, said importation of polio virus was a reminder of the risks associated with active polio virus transmission in the country, and stressed the need to make urgent efforts to stop the transmission in Pakistan. Prime minister’s cell, World Health organization, UNICEF and partners in Pakistan’s Polio Eradication Initiative had called for urgent pre-emptive measures against exportation of the polio virus after positive samples linked to the Sukkur District of Sindh were discovered in Egypt. Two sewage samples collected from the Al Salam and Al Haggana areas of the Cairo district when collected and analyzed in a laboratory bore resemblance to a strain discovered recently in sewage water tested in Sukkur. Though the virus had not infected any child in Egypt and the country remained polio-free since 2004, the Egyptian Ministry of Health had ordered immediate vaccination of all children under five years in the localities near Cairo from where the Pakistan-origin virus was discovered. Dr Ahmed omar of the Ministry of Health and Population in Egypt stated that the Ministry would start a campaign to vaccinate children under the age of five against polio in Ezbet Hagana Peace and Kaliobeya in Cairo. Recently, the Independent Monitoring Board had also recommended international travel restrictions for the three polio endemic countries under the International Health Regulations. APP
Interim bail of Jam Yusuf, Sherpao, Nosherwani rejected
FAISALABAD: People gather around a man who got injured after falling down from an electricity pylon while repairing transmission lines near Katchery Bazaar on Tuesday. ONLINe
QUETTA: Balochistan High Court (BHC) rejected on Tuesday the interim bail of former Balochistan chief minister Jam Yusuf, former interior minister Aftab Sherpao and provincial minister Shoaib Nosherwani who were accused of Akbar Bugti’s murder. Sherpao, Jam Yusuf and Nosherwani had obtained interim bail earlier in this case. However, the BHC took up the interim bail for hearing on Tuesday and Justice Sajjad Khan Mandokhel rejected the interim bail and directed them to approach the trial court in this regard. Sohail Rajput, counsel for Nawab Akbar Bugti, asked the court that all the accused named in the case should be arrested. Online
Indian soldiers beheaded Pakistanis in recent past: report NEW DELHI Online
Indian media on Monday revealed that Indian soldiers had beheaded three Pakistani troops and mutilated their bodies. Renowned Indian journalist and anchor, Karan Thapar wrote a column for Hindustan Times published on Monday in which he said that for the most part, the Indian media failed to report that Indian soldiers too have beheaded Pakistanis. “The beheading of an Indian soldier on the LoC and the mutilation of another were undoubtedly unacceptable and unpardonable. This was barbaric behaviour. The anger and revulsion it provoked is understandable. There’s no denying that. However, there’s one question we need to ask but mainly failed to raise. Have we ever been guilty
of similar behaviour ourselves?” Thapar wrote. “From what I can tell the answer seems to be yes. on the 10th, The Hindu reported that last year, during a skirmish at Karnah, Indian Special Forces responded by attacking a Pakistani forward post, killing several soldiers, and by the account of one military official which The Hindu could not corroborate independently, beheaded two,” Thapar said. “What makes this claim credible is that it’s reported by military sources that not only ought to know but would not denigrate the reputation of Indian soldiers,” he said. “Alas, there’s more evidence. This time from eye-witnesses,” Thapar added. In her ‘Confessions of a War Reporter’, published in June 2001 by Himal, a well-known Nepalese magazine, Barkha Dutt, famous Indian an-
chor and journalist, recounted how she witnessed a decapitated Pakistani soldier’s head at Kargil. This is what she wrote: “I had to look three times to make sure I was seeing right. “Look again,” said the army colonel, in a tone that betrayed suppressed excitement. This time, I finally saw. It was a head, the disembodied face of a slain soldier nailed onto a tree. “The boys got it as a gift for the brigade,” said the colonel, softly, but proudly.” Thapar said Harinder Baweja, the editor (Investigation) of this paper, witnessed something similar. This is the account from her book A Soldier’s Diary, Kargil-The Inside Story: “The experiences of 18 Garhwal show another side of the war … one of them took out his knife and slit the head of a Pakistani soldier in one stroke. The head was sent to Brigade Headquarters at Drass and pinned to a tree trunk …
the enemy head, a grisly trophy, became an exhibition piece. Major General Puri came down from Mughalpura to see it. other officers dropped in to Brigade Headquarters to take a look. So did some journalists … it was there pinned on the tree for anyone who could bear to look at it.” Thapar wrote, “So is this proof that Indian soldiers, both in the recent past and during Kargil, have done to Pakistanis what they did to our jawans last week? The Hindu report is clearly not proof. on the other hand, what Barkha and Harinder saw seems like it. They are eye-witnesses. They are highly regarded journalists. They have a reputation for telling the truth. More importantly, they have no reason to lie”. “However, my intention is not to establish moral equivalence between Indian and Pakistani soldiers, although
some might come to that conclusion. It’s to ask why the media, other than The Hindu, not point this out? You cannot argue it was irrelevant information. More importantly, it would have put a different complexion on the decapitation of our soldiers. And, certainly, it would have tempered the furious discussions on television,” Thapar wrote. “As journalists we owe our audience not just the truth but both sides of it when that’s pertinent. To not be even handed is to leave them half-informed,” he said. Thapar said in this instance, we whipped up passions when we should have helped audiences realise the LoC is a tough place, where brutal actions often happen and both sides retaliate in equally gruesome ways. “When tempers cool and time lends perspective, our audience won’t forgive us for half-truths,” Thapar concluded.
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10 Comment Dedicated to the legacy of the late Hameed Nizami
Arif Nizami Editor Lahore – Ph: 042-36375963-5 Fax: 042-32535230 Karachi – Ph: 021-35381208-9 Fax: 021-35381208 Islamabad – Ph: 051-2287273 Web: www.pakistantoday.com.pk Email: email@example.com
A well worded speech not many takers for Obama’s promises though
he speech was well worded – with the right mix of lyricism and passion. It pointed to goals that most of his audience aspired for. Barrack Hussein obama’s speech was therefore well received and applauded by those who had come to listen to the President of the USA. The address however generated far less enthusiasm in the world at large compared to obama’s earlier speeches delivered soon after taking over power in 2009. And for good reason! His domestic agenda with promises of immigration and voting reform, gun control, investment in highways and other infrastructure, equal pay for women and revamping the tax code to combat inequality would have to be put into practice to convince those in the US whose earlier support for obama has gradually tapered off for lack of performance. Many of his frustrated supporters subsequently concluded that much like the Republicans, the Democrats too were in fact catering to the interests of big business rather than the common taxpayer. Some subsequently joined the “occupy Wall Street” sit-ins – the longest series of protests against the system since the civil rights movement. Many will wait with fingers crossed to see if obama can this time withstand the pressures from the gun lobby, militaryindustrial complex and the carbon lobby to fulfil promises like the end to domestic terrorism, a policy of peace through talks and alliances and concentration on sustainable energy sources. Many in Asia and the Middle East would take the promise of unstinted support to democracy with a sizable pinch of salt. Their experience during obama’s last four years has taught them so. During his first tenure, obama blatantly sacrificed what he calls American values like human dignity, justice and democracy for the material interests of his country. Washington provided moral and material support to pro-US Arab autocratic regimes which shot and killed protestors demanding reforms. The policy of targeted killings was adopted as a state policy. Drone attacks multiplied under obama and the pilotless killer planes were adopted as a weapon of choice. While obama’s nomination of Chuck Hagel as Defence Secretary raised hackles in Israel, it has failed to inspire Palestinians who have reasons to be wary because Israel was allowed to act with impunity against the West Bank population. There is little hope of obama taking into account Pakistan’s sensibilities regarding the drone attacks. All the more so keeping in view the divide between the military and the civilian establishments on the one hand and the government and opposition on the other. only after the major political parties have developed an understanding and are able to take the army along, can Pakistan hope to get its concerns addressed.
Wednesday, 23 January, 2013
Qadri and his ilk The faltering state system gives enough space to such leaders to flourish
t is a matter of satisfaction and relief that the political theatre staged by Dr Tahirul Qadri in Islamabad had an amicable ending. He threatened on more than one occasion to unleash his loyalists on the government installations but good sense prevailed on his side and the federal government. His appeal for dialogue on his demands on the fourth day was quickly responded to by the federal government because it wanted his loyalists to leave Islamabad. Dr Qadri has claimed victory because his demands have been accepted but as a matter of fact what he got in the declaration was nothing more than a face-saving arrangement. These demands could have been accepted without the march and the sit-in. Dr Qadri’s position was weakened by the unanimous declaration of the opposition parties that rejected his demands and reaffirmed their faith in the constitution and the electoral process. These political parties declared that they would resist any attempt to postpone the elections. Even Imran Khan separately refused to join Dr Qadri’s sit-in. These developments contributed to Qadri’s decision to seek a dialogue with the govt on his demands. The sit-in ended peacefully but it focuses attention on periodic challenges to political stability and democracy By Dr Hasan Askari Rizvi in Pakistan. The rise of selfstyled saviour with an aura of righteousness c a n n o t strengthen democracy and constitutionalism. Even if such a leader professes to identify with the constitution and democracy, he has a tendency to articulate every principle of democracy to his advantage. As the self-styled saviour claims to represent the ultimate truth and the interests of the society, he expects others to fall in line with him.
There is little room, if any, for consultation or sharing with other political and societal players on the agenda he wants to pursue. once everybody accepts the agenda, there can be some flexibility on how to go about realising his agenda. Dr Qadri has developed a cult type leadership by combining Islamic ideological scripture and idiom with popular political and social slogans of the contemporary context. This brings together the traditional Islamic identity and religious scriptures with modern ideas and societal notions. With powerful oratory he fully captured the minds of members of his religious movement. Most people who joined him in his long march were his religious followers, activists of his religious movement and those studying in his educational institutions. They had religious and emotional attachment with him and they could go to any extent on his command. The leader that seeks blind loyalty from his followers by invoking ideological-religious appeals, selective historical narratives and populist rhetoric cannot be helpful to democratic political order. The insistence on the people obeying his commands because he knows what is good for all cannot endure democratic and pluralist political order. Rather, such a leader at the operational level becomes arrogant towards and dismissive of others and he creates a personalised authoritarian political order, if not a theocratic state. This would be close to the Iranian political order that has the trappings of modern and democratic politics but the ultimate power lies with the Supreme Spiritual Leader. History provides ample evidence of cult-type leadership that emotionally controls the followers. It may use human shield of his followers to protect itself and employ violence or threat thereof by his loyalists in the name of the ideology either for pursuing his political agenda or to contain dissidents. It is a colonial style leadership that creates top-down hierarchical social and political arrangements where the highest premium is assigned to loyalty and obedience from the followers. They may make some suggestions but the final decision rests with the leader which is absolute and final. The rise of authoritarian and self-centred leaders with saviour complex is symptomatic of acute social, political and economic crisis in a society and the inability of the political and state institution to respond effectively to the basic needs and aspirations of the people. Internal crises in a society create an identity crisis among people and they tend to lose confidence in their capacity to change. They feel dis-empowered, unable to control their future.
Lacking self-confidence the people are vulnerable to emotional and hardline ideological appeals. Such appeals tend to create confidence among them and mobilise them for a better future. With the decline of Marxism and Socialism, religious ideologies seem to fill the gap for the people and society in search of self-confidence and socio-political identity. In Islamic countries literalist and fundamentalist appeals have attracted a large number of people. Hardline Islamic idiom or appeal cannot bring about an-all embracing Islamic revolution in Muslim societies because of Islamic-denominational conflicts. As one becomes literalist and fundamentalist in interpreting Islamic religious scripture, sect or “Maslak” dominates interpretation and thus the appeal is neutralised for those who identify with a different school of Islamic thought. Therefore, an Ayotollah Khomeini-type leadership cannot emerge in Pakistan because of pluralist nature of Islam as practised in Pakistan. Even if a person is above denominational divergence, the competing interests and the people will view that leader in the existing denominational context. Dr Tahirul Qadri has a strong appeal for the followers of Barlevi Islamic tradition because of his knowledge of Islam and modern world and excellent oratory. However, his political agenda is not supported by a large number of Barlevi religious leaders. The religious leaders and followers of other Islamic Fiqah traditions reject him altogether. The poor performance of the elected governments in governance, provisions of basic facilities to the people, growing internal insecurity, energy shortages and price hikes have alienated a large number of people. They are vulnerable to those who can exploit their present deprivations and aspirations for the future. There is strong tendency in Pakistan to seek an extraordinary person who will solve their problems rather than striving for solution of the problems through the political process and use of their democratic power to elect the rulers. As they wait for some saviour and messiah to come on the political scene and solve their problems, a religious leader with strong oratory and understanding of their frustrations and aspirations has a better chance to sway them. Pakistan’s democratic and electoral experiment will have to cope with the Qadritype saviours who try to build personal political fortune by invoking Islam for the people in search of a better and secure future. The faltering state system gives enough space to such leaders to flourish. The writer is an independent political and defence analyst.
Pakistan, India and Kashmir An out of the box solution is needed
By Malik Muhammad Ashraf
he beauty of the truth is that it cannot be suppressed for ever and it ultimately emerges triumphant. The revelation by the Indian Home Minister Sushil Kumar Shinde that SSS and BJP were running ‘terror training camps’ and spreading Saffron terrorism and that they were involved in the bombing of Samjhota Express, Mecca Masjid and Malegaon, is a confirmation of that universal truth. Both these organisations are avowed enemies of Pakistan and it is no wonder that they have been carrying out these acts of terrorism with the purpose of scuttling any initiative taken for normalisation of relations between Pakistan and India. Mere acknowledging these realities is not enough. It is now incumbent upon the
government of India to ensure the closure of these training facilities for the terrorists and also put in place legal and administrative measures to prevent such happenings in the future. It is also a moral obligation of the international community, especially the world body and the US to condemn terrorism by these entities and employ their influence and pressure on the Indian government to take decisive action against these outfits and also declare them as terrorist organisations, like it has been done in the case of similar outfits in Pakistan. It is also an undeniable reality that the non state actors in Pakistan have also worked on the similar lines and jeopardised the chances of improvement of relations between the two countries and the achievement of durable peace in the region. Both countries are presently engaged in a dialogue to resolve the disputes between them, thanks to a thoughtful initiative by the present government and the strenuous efforts made by it to revive the suspended dialogue in the wake of the attack on Taj Mahal hotel in Bombay. The success of parleys depends on sincerity of purpose and the ability of the two countries to neutralise the non state actors as well as initiating concrete measures that verifiably indicate a marked departure from the traditional posture of hostility and the recognition of the new regional and global realities. Both sides will have to sus-
pend their support and patronisation of covert operations within the territories of each other. They must prevent incidents of firing across the Line of Control in Kashmir and prevent them from derailing the process of the revived dialogue. The government of Pakistan has done well by not heeding to the advice of the hawks to take the incident of firing across the LoC to the UN Security Council as it would have taken us back to square one in regards to the bilateral dialogue. The bilateral arrangement must be given the chance to succeed. There is no doubt that the people on both sides want this process of rapprochement to proceed unhindered as is evident by the ‘Aman Ki Asha’ initiative unfurled by the media and intellectuals in Pakistan and India. The governments and politicians of the two countries must realise that for the peace in the region and a change in the economic situations of the teeming millions in both the countries, the resolution of disputes between them through peaceful means is an indispensable imperative. The recent developments like easing visa regimes and granting of most favoured nation status to India and efforts to revive and expand trade and commerce between the two countries are welcome moves. Similarly, the revival of sports ties is another encouraging event. India and Pakistan, with nuclear capability, cannot afford any kind of military confrontation
which can have disastrous consequences not only for the region but also for the world peace. So the military solution is out as an option. Both countries have to show commitment to peace to be able to achieve the desired goals. It is pertinent to note that the Simla Agreement underlining the desirability of resolution of disputes between the two countries through bilateral dialogue does not change the status of the Kashmir dispute. It also does not preclude the possibility of raising it again at the UN in case the bilateral agreement fails to deliver. Article 103 of UN Charter says: “In the event of a conflict between the obligations of the members of the UN under the present charter and their obligations under any other international agreement, their obligations under the present charter will prevail.” What it means is that the UN resolutions on Kashmir will take precedence over all other international agreements on the same issue. Pakistan is very much within its right to invoke UN resolutions, after having been frustrated to find solution through the bilateral arrangement. The UN resolutions on Kashmir adopted under Chapter VII of the UN Charter remain legally binding on the parties. Article 25 also reiterates their obligatory nature. The Security Council under the UN Charter has the power to enforce its decisions and resolutions militarily or by any other means nec-
essary; the powers that it has used during the Korean War in 1950 and in Iraq and Kuwait in 1991. It is abundantly clear from the foregoing that the legal status and obligations of the parties to the dispute under UN resolutions and that of the Security Council to have its resolutions implemented, remains unaffected. However, looking at the international environment and the changed realities Pakistan will find it very difficult to enlist the support of the international community and the powers like US, UK and their western allies for any move to re-raise the issue at the UN forum. Even the UN has not been enthusiastic about the implementation of its resolutions. The US has a declared policy of wanting both India and Pakistan to resolve their difference and the Kashmir dispute through bilateral dialogue. It is even averse to the idea of playing a mediating role. The resolution of the Kashmir conundrum, therefore, requires an out of the box solution with the involvement of the two governments and the leaders of Kashmir to settle this issue in conformity with the new ground realities and keeping in view the long term interests of the people of India, Pakistan and Kashmir. All stakeholders need to adopt a futuristic approach that ultimately brings peace in the region and the resolution of the disputes amicably. The writer is an academic.
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Editor’s mail Send your letters to: Letters to Editor, Pakistan Today, 4-Shaarey Fatima Jinnah, Lahore, Pakistan Fax: +92-42-32535230 E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org Letters should be addressed to Pakistan Today exclusively
our baseless issues We in Pakistan are fond of creating issues of one kind or the other to keep public busy and bewildered. Elections, for example, are constantly being kept as a big deal. on the one hand we have attained democracy and every step we take is a march towards democracy but one the other hand, elections, which are a part and parcel of democracy, are facing one problem or another. Sometimes, the delimitation of constituencies becomes a problem, sometimes enrolment of (bogus) votes becomes an issue and to top it all the very ECP comes under fire. SC issues judgement on RPPs and the investigation officer, a fairly senior man, commits ‘suicide’ jeopardising the whole thing. Hardly had we got over Malala’s episode, when we see Dr TuQ’s drama keeping men and women and children (including infants) out in the piercing and cold wind in the open skies for four nights and in the end hugs and smiles with all ‘ex’ and ‘Yazeeds’ and books himself to go to Canada on 27th. Diesel price reduced by Rs 0.001 per litre is the most wonderful joke making me laugh after Charlie Chaplin’s comedy. The entire country looks like a stage where short skits are shown to played audience busy and amused. To tell you the truth I don’t know if power, gas, fuel shortages etc have taken us to Stone Age or not but the comedy plays have certainly taken us to 17th and 18th centuries. We, as a nation, have not grown from our embryo. This had to happen when we have our ministers who are not the real representative of the public. This was inevitable when we have our country’s future carved by remote-controlled people like Altaf, who is so fond of Indian songs and who can speak for hours. There is no matured leader on the horizon. It is by all means an alarming situation especially when Indians fire and kill our soldiers on LoC. AMJAD H MIRZA Lahore
Winds of change in Pakistan All that has been happening on the political front in the country, since the past over six months, leaves everyone totally confused. Widespread speculations vis-à-vis the rapidly changing political scenario further add to this growing confusion. People are at loss to understand which political group they should believe in and which they shouldn’t. With national elections fast approaching all of them seem to be harping the same tune. They are vociferously making tall claims of bringing about the much needed ‘Change’ that this country so badly needs. They are also talking about empowering the electorate of this country who actually possess the power of electing and placing people in positions of authority to govern. These political groups are also making big promises to the people of Pakistan to fulfil all their basic needs of life (food, shelter, education, health, employment etc) as enshrined
in the Constitution of the Islamic Republic of Pakistan. Bringing progress and prosperity to the country and the nation, and making Pakistan standout in the comity of respected and developed nations of the world are some other important commitments these political parties are making to the people. Undeniably, whatever they are saying or promising are issues that have always been central to the interests of this nation. The fact of the matter is that such commitments were also made by every government that was elected to power by the masses in the past. Unfortunately, however, none of them made any sincere effort to fulfil them. It is a known fact that in this country people mattered to the rulers only for serving their personal interest and greed to come to power. once voted to power, neither the people nor this country ever mattered to them. Had they been sincere in
our flawed democracy I wonder why the politicians don’t want to believe that the army establishment wants democracy in the country run by honest, competent politician and who are able to tackle and solve the problems issues faced by the people and country. Speaking on a point of order in the Senate, PPP Stalwart Raza Rabbani while referring to Dr Qadri’s long march cautioned against more efforts to derail democracy in the coming days to get the general elections postponed. He said, “A conspiracy was hatched against the democratic system a few days ago, a failed attempt had been made to murder democracy in front of parliament house.” The revolution never came about but he believes that it was not the last such attempt. Mr Rabbani also said that the role of the ruling elite in the appointment of a caretaker setup and Chief Election Commissioner had been eliminated through 18th and 20th amendment. He rejected Dr Qadri’s demands for a 30-day period for scrutiny of nomination papers of candidates intending to contest election under Article 62 and 63 of the constitution as having no basis. Mr Rabbani is forgetting that just yesterday the CEC appreciated and welcomed the 30-day period for scrutiny of candidate’s nomination papers. My question to Raza Rabbani is who is the real enemy of democracy? Those who seek continuation of a dysfunctional democracy which failed to deliver on all key fronts during the last five years or the army establishment. Due to the inability of the PPP coalition government to deal with the key challenges manifested in the present crises of governance, economic mismanagement, rampant corruption, crime, terrorism and the crumbling writ of the state, they now pose the greatest threat to both democracy and the country. People have paid a heavy price to preserve the flawed democracy during the last five years.
dealing with the affairs of Pakistan in a just and judicious manner and had they honoured the promises they made to the people of this country, then today’s Pakistan would have been a different Pakistan. It would have been the Pakistan that was envisioned by its founding father Quaid-e-Azam Muhammad Ali Jinnah. The question that now arises is should people believe in the rhetoric of different political groups on the issue of bringing a change in the country? Should they vest their trust, once again, in those who have deceived them over and again in the past? If looked at from the point of view of the past political history of this country, the spontaneous response should be ‘no’. Since, however, things have to keep moving in the lives of a nation some decision in this regard will have to be arrived at. The best and the only way for the people to ensure that they are not
Which political party except MQM has members in the assemblies from the middle class? Dr Tahirul Qadri’s agenda is to replace the mediaeval, feudal, tribal system with modern democratic institution without which the real democracy is not possible. The majority of people are in the favour of democracy but are not prepared to accept the tested old politicians for another five years. ENGR S T HUSSAIN Lahore
Security and investigation specialists our worsening security, sick economy and rampant corruption clearly point to failures of tools chosen to curtail them. Pakistan’s problem is that inspite of worsening domestic security, target killings, rise in corruption and white collar crimes, we have failed to realise that both security and white collar crime investigation are a specialised field, where men who qualify to handle them, must acquire relevant academic qualifications, computer skills and familiarity with tools of forensic financial and crime investigation, which criminals are familiar with. Unfortunately, our law enforcement agencies are run by men who have no such training, other than perhaps what they had learnt in civil services academies. Similarly, it is assumed that all retired/serving members of our armed forces are suitable to handle vital civil law enforcement agencies, anti-terrorism units, NADRA, even serve as VCs of universities, heads of vital commercial corporations and now even NAB. We need to appoint individuals trained for these specific fields from domestic or foreign universities of repute, which offer these specialised courses, rather than reducing these vital services to serve as postretirement rehabilitation welfare centres for our
deceived once again by the powerhungry rulers of this country, they should exercise their right to vote judiciously. They must vote those political parties out which have been brought to the citadel of power by them, time and again, but have failed to deliver. on the contrary, they should make conscious efforts to vote those people to power who are people of unquestionable integrity and unparalleled competence and have not been tried before. But all this would be possible only if the Chief Election Commissioner and the Election Commission of Pakistan are made independent and powerful. Needless to say that it would also be imperative to revamp the country’s electoral system and make it absolutely infallible if the above objectives were to be achieved successfully. M FAZAL ELAHI Islamabad
civil and khaki bureaucracies. Chairman NAB, an organisation which has acquired notoriety as a Corruption Facilitation Bureau, should have accepted his failures instead of insisting that his former rank, excluding the mention of word retired should be affixed as part of his name during the SC hearing of RPP scam. Perhaps he forgot that Mansoorul Haq, a former admiral involved in massive corruption, was not nabbed by much claimed in-house accountability within our navy. The ugly reality is that hundreds of thousands of labourers were rendered unemployed, with economy in shambles and billions of rupees gone down the drain, no power was generated by the RPPs. This privilege of rank is only for those like Shaheed Major Shabbir Sharif, who died defending this country. The sitting Chairman NAB at best can call himself a retired admiral, but cannot demand being called an admiral, for he is no longer in service. He has badly failed to contain corruption during his tenure in NAB. MALIK TARIQ ALI Lahore
A chance Congratulations to the people of Pakistan. With the agreement signed by the Prime Minister Raja Pervaiz Ashraf with Dr Qadri for general elections before March 16 this year means that President Zardari won’t be up for re-election. At least now we Pakistanis get a chance to have an honest, chivalrous and educated person as the leader of Pakistan, who can inspire everyone in Pakistan to be honest and hard working. on the other hand, a person, who is ordered by the courts of Pakistan to be arrested, signing documents on behalf of the government shows the duplicity of the NAB Chairman in this regard. SHAHRYAR KHAN BASEER Peshawar
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russian critics ridicule British adaptation of
HE detractors ridiculed the film’s overblown sets, the accented voices of foreign actors singing in Russian and Knightley’s allegedly contorted facial expressions. Trud newspaper said “the English Anna Karenina is too bony” – a view apparently shared by many cinemagoers – while admitting the costume drama, which premiered in Moscow earlier this month, was “bright” and “convincing”. others were less charitable. Lidiya Maslova, a critic for the respected Kommersant newspaper, said Knightley’s expressions were “overenergetic” and her portrayal made Karenina “too sure of herself”. “She angrily flashes her eyes, flares her nostrils and, before a kiss, sticks out her unique jaw as if she is about to bite off Vronsky’s tongue,” the critic wrote, adding that Knightley’s hair looked like a “Medusa’s head of snakes”. Critics in Moscow have traditionally looked scornfully on Western attempts to screen Russian classics. David Lean’s 1965 version of Doctor Zhivago with omar Sharif as the protagonist was ridiculed when it was first shown in Russia in the 1990s. In the new film, British director Joe Wright sets the story in a theatre, a device that British and American critics have praised as a fresh means for exploring the novel’s themes of pain, fidelity and love. Some Russian commentators agreed, saying the drama – scripted by Tom Stoppard and also starring Jude Law as Karenina’s cuckolded husband – was innovative and should not be compared with the sweeping original book. But Dmitry Bykov, a popular poet and political opposition figure, said Wright had been “condescending, scornful and egocentric” in using one of Russia’s greatest classics for an “experiment in theatricality” while “spitting on its hidden meanings”. In a tongue-in-cheek reference to the recent US ban on alleged Russian human rights abusers visiting America, Mr Bykov said one potential response to the British film was “to introduce a parliamentary embargo on all Keira Knightley’s future works”. Another was to produce an insulting Russian film adaptation of “a sacral English classic” such as Robinson Crusoe. “Wright’s film can be bought and shown in Russia only in a state of total moral insanity,” the poet concluded testily. Wright and Knightley have not responded to the Russian criticism.
DiCaprio to take long break from acting
FTEr working on “Django Unchained,” the upcoming “The Great Gatsby” and Martin Scorsese’s “The Wolf of Wall Street” back-toback-to-back, the 38-year-old actor is “worn out,” he told Germany’s Bild. “i am a bit drained,” he told the German newspaper. “i’ve done three films in two years and i’m just worn out.” DiCaprio won’t just be lounging around — he also intends to use his time off to focus on his other passion, environmental activism. “i would like to improve the world a bit. i will fly around the world doing good for the environment,” he told Bild. Unlike many other celebrities, though, DiCaprio doesn’t just talk-the-talk, he walks-the-walk or at least drives an electric car. DiCaprio has his own foundation providing grants to organizations striving for wildlife protection, clean water and renewable energy. neWS DeSK
sachin Tendulkar’s music date with Asha Bhosle
Kylie Minogue chooses comedy role to kickstart acting career
OP star kylie Minogue will star ina one-off dark comedy on British TV as she steps away from music to focus on acting. a representative for the Spinning around hitmaker said that Minogue will be taking a bit of a break from the charts to return to her first love of acting, reported Daily Express. The decision comes as she parts way with her manager of 25 years, Terry Blamey, and she has now filmed a quirky new project for Sky’s Playhouse Presents series, reported Daily Express. She will star in hey Diddle Dee, a comedy based on pop artist andy Warhol, which is directed by Marc Warren. “When the script was sent to me, i knew instinctively i wanted to be part of this project. Marc has created a beautiful, quirky story,” she said. neWS DeSK
Asha Bhosle has invited Sachin Tendulkar to launch the music of her acting debut. Prior to their film’s release, most Bollywood celebrities seek all kinds of godly intervention for success in their endeavours. But legendary singer Asha Bhosle has gone a step further. She has invited the god of cricket Sachin Tendulkar to launch the music of her Bollywood acting debut. Everyone knows the rapport the master blaster shares with Asha Bhosle as well as her sister Lata Mangeshkar. They are his biggest fans and he respects them a lot. So for her big moment, Asha Bhosle wanted no one but Sachin to release the music. Says a source, “It was entirely Ashaji’s idea to have Sachin at the event. She called him and requested him and he agreed to grace the event. neWS
hakira tastefully shows off her pregnant form (and her über-handsome boyfriend, soccer star Gerard Piqué) in a gorgeous photo that she recently posted on Twitter. Shot by Jaume Laiguana, the image was unveiled in conjunction with the couple’s pledge to donate proceeds of their world baby shower to UNiCEF to help save the lives of less fortunate children. On the online invitation to their “shower”, the couple said: “as you all know, we will soon be welcoming our first child into the world, and to celebrate his birth we’ve organized a virtual baby shower in association with UNiCEF.” “in lieu of receiving gifts for our baby as with a traditional shower we would like to offer support for babies who live in conditions of extreme poverty throughout the world.” neWS DeSK
Slumdog Millionaire star Freida Pinto has been crowned the “Hottest Indian Chick” in GQ magazine’s US edition The publication has become embroiled in a racism row after it included a series of new race-specific categories to its “100 Sexiest Women of the 21st Century” poll, the Daily Mail reported Critics have slammed the lads’ glossy for suggesting some women “are only attractive in the context of their own ethnicity” after awarding titles for ‘Sexiest Chinese Chick’, ‘Sexiest Indian Chick’ and, most tenuous of all, ‘Sexiest Pregnant Sri Lankan’ Ziyi Zhang was named ‘Hottest Chinese Chick’ while the somewhat dubious title of ‘Hottest Pregnant Sri Lankan’ went to British rapper M.I.A. neWS DeSK
don’t hug me tight, says salman khan to fellow actors NEWS DESK
Shakira shows off her bump for a good cause
Controversial poll names Freida Pinto ‘hottest Indian chick’
There are two kind of events — those with Salman Khan, and those without. The former kind is usually a success, and always has everyone excited. So, on Saturday, at the opening ceremony of Celebrity Cricket League (CCL) Season III, Salman broke his back (literally) to make sure that he wasn’t letting down his fans and fellow actors. Salman, looking stiff and in visible discomfort, performed at the event in spite of a severe back ache. Which is
probably why he asked his friends to go easy while hugging him. When Aftab Shivdasani greeted the actor, Salman said, “Don’t hug me tight.”Since he wasn’t in a condition to rehearse for the performance either, he also asked everyone to bear with him. “I don’t know the steps properly. People here are all friends from the fraternity, so they will enjoy whatever I do,” he said. The actor took to the stage late in the night to perform to a medley of hit songs from Dabangg 2 (2012). Salman is, unofficially, the face of brother Sohail Khan’s team, Mumbai Heroes, in the CCL T20 league. It seems from the very first season, Salman was keen to be part of the team, but his “health condition doesn’t permit” him to play the game. Ask him if his fans will ever get to see him on a cricket pitch, and he says, “I’m always with the team, but I’m not sure if I will ever play.” The tournament will take place from February 9 to March 10.
LADY GAGA I love my fans so much, thank you for 2 killer shows Hollywood. You really make me feel like I can do anything
MALLIKA SHERAWAT ran 4 miles, addicted to running:)
LINKIN PARK Thank you to sarah from Australia and all of the fans that contributed to my birthday video. You guys are awesome! -rob
RUSSELL BRAND Bloody hell! That nose picking picture blew up. Good job they can’t see where that finger goes when I’m indoors.
KIM KARDASHIAN kelly Clarkson and Beyonce killed it! (President’s Inauguration)
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sanjay dutt-Aamir khan to share screen for the first time
The star cast for Rajkumar Hirani’s P.K. is beginning to resemble the ever-changing Indian cricket team lineup — while a few names have remained constant, others have been in and out of the list. Now, the latest news is that director (and chief selector) Rajkumar Hirani has roped in a trusted star — Sanjay Dutt. The director and actor have, of course, had a lot of success working together in the Munna Bhai films. Sanjay is the latest addition to a cast comprising Aamir Khan, Anushka Sharma and Sushant Singh Rajput. “Sanjay has been finalised. He will play the part of a rustic Rajasthani. He will have quite a few sequences with Aamir’s character in the film,” says an insider close to the project. This will be the third time Rajkumar and Sanjay will team up after Munna Bhai M.B.B.S. (2003) and Lage Raho Munna Bhai (2006). It will also be the first time Sanjay will act with Aamir. “Although Sanjay’s casting was confirmed late, his role is pivotal,” adds the insider. Interestingly, Sanjay seems to have effectively replaced his Munna Bhai co-actor Arshad Warsi, who was initially approached for the multistarrer. neWS DeSK
Goldie Hawn tries not to interfere in kate Hudson’s life Kurt Russell and Goldie Hawn try not to interfere in Kate Hudson’s relationship with Matt Bellamy. Kurt has been in a relationship with Kate’s mother Goldie for 30 years and although the trio are extremely close, Kurt says they don’t offer advice unless Kate asks for it. He explained: “We stay out of their way, obviously. But if we find ourselves talking about each other and how we feel about each other, we stand up and we say, ‘Wait this is important!’ “I’m not going to lie about something like that, and we try not to stick our nose in where it doesn’t belong, but if we sense that perhaps there is something that someone wants to talk about, I think we’re open enough to say a little something if it’s right and appropriate.” Although he and Goldie have been together for so long, Kurt doesn’t have any tips for how Kate and Matt - who have an 18-month-old son named Bingham together - can emulate them. He added to People: “I don’t know what secrets there are, and like any couple that’s been together for 30 years, we’ve experienced many, many different angles and avenues of our relationship. “I think I’m incredibly lucky to have had the experience, and even more fortunate to have it with the person I have it with.” neWS DeSK
why ‘Argo’ will win best picture at the oscars
(L-r) Natalia Vodianova, Valentino Garavani, Jennifer Lopez, Casper Smart at the Paris Fashion Week Womenswear Spring/Summer 2013.
PARIS FASHION WEEK KICKS OFF Versace kicked off Paris couture week with a colourful and luxurious collection awash in fluorescent hues and real 24-carat gold accents. Kevin Costner and Princess Charlene of Monaco were among the celebrities at Donatella Versace’s Atelier Versace show, which launched Haute Couture fashion week in the French capital. Versace’s Spring/Summer 2013 collection explored the relationship between architectural shapes and ethereal fabrics. The colour palette was a riot of fluorescent yellow and pink sprinkled with black and gold numbers. Designer Donatella Versace said: “I have two fabrics in this collection. one is black pinstripe, but the stripe is real gold, so the silk is woven with real gold. Another one is a Japanese denim, woven with real gold again. But you cannot do this kind of thing for example for pret-à-porter, it would cost a fortune.” Versace was founded by the late Gianni Versace in 1978. Donatella Versace took over the reins following the death of her brother who was murdered in Miami Beach in 1997. The Italian label is best-known for its sexy silhouettes and over-the-top glamour. neWS DeSK
PRINCE HARRY admits he let family down in nude photo scandal Prince Harry has admitted he “let himself down” following last year’s nude photo scandal. The 28-year-old royal was photographed naked in a Las Vegas hotel room during a game of strip billiards with a bevy of beauties and while he is unhappy that someone in the group leaked the pictures, Harry admitted he was partly to blame. Speaking to reporters before he left Afghanistan, where he has been deployed for four months, the Apache helicopter pilot said: “I probably let myself down. I let my family down, I let other people down. “At the end of the day, I was in a private area and there should be a certain amount of privacy ... The way I was treated ... I don’t think is acceptable. “Back home all my close friends rallied round me and were great.” “It was a classic example of me probably being too much army and not enough prince”.Harry was backed by a former head of the Army following his antics with General Sir Mike Jackson saying he had “no difficulty” with the images and the flame-haired prince’s only crime was getting caught. He previously said: “All young officers are probably saying, ‘There but for the grace of God go I,’ and even some older officers are remembering perhaps the odd moment in their youth when they were being not as wise perhaps as they might have been. “No. I have no difficulty with it. one does remember the 11th commandment: Thou shalt not get caught.” neWS DeSK
The momentum seems to be moving in Argo’s direction, a movie that paints the showbiz industry as an international superpower.
NEWS DESK This year’s Academy Awards race for Best Picture is a lot like last year’s race for the Republican presidential nomination. only the stakes are so much higher!The early frontrunner, Argo may have peaked too early, kind of like Mitt Romney did. Next came Silver Linings Playbook (the cuckoo candidate, à la Michele Bachmann), Life of Pi (if only Rick Perry could roar like that tiger), Lincoln (as reserved as Ron Paul), and Zero Dark Thirty (as controversial as Rick Santorum). I hate to compare Les Misérables to Newt Gingrich, but they both po-
larized voters. And the much-anticipated The Great Gatsby pushed back its candidacy (like Chris Christie). As BuzzFeed’s Richard Rushfield observed last November, the oscar race for Best Picture had never been so wide open. But if there’s one thing the Academy loves, it’s a comeback story—and a funny thing happened on the red carpet. The early precursor awards that were supposed to go to Lincoln went to Argo instead. Ben Affleck’s film about how the CIA (and
Hollywood!) heroically saved six diplomats during the 1979 Iranian hostage crisis swept top honors at the Golden Globes and the Critics’ Choice Awards in January. over at Gold Derby, which tracks various oscar races, 13 pundits still predict Lincoln will win Best Picture compared with 10 for Argo. If anything, though, with a month until the Feb. 24 oscars ceremony, the momentum seems to be moving in Argo’s direction, a movie that paints the showbiz industry as an international superpower.
Imam siddique takes digs at shah rukh khan, again NEWS DESK His notorious antics on the reality show, Bigg Boss, have made him a household name. And now, Imam Siddique seems set with his television career. Apart from being signed on for a new comedy show, he has also been approached for a number of brand endorsements. “I will be associated with a clothing line soon. I have even told those approaching me that I won’t quote a price and that they should decide how much money I am worth,” says Imam, adding that his stint on Bigg Boss has been the most rewarding experience of his career.“I have never been more humbled or honoured. In the last seven days, I have received invitations from Saudi royal families to attend Umrah and Haj. I am getting paid Rs. 5 lakh to attend wedding receptions, shake hands and click photographs. That too just for attending these events; there is no performance even,” he says. Imam also continues to take digs at Shah Rukh Khan, after his offhand remark during Bigg Boss about making the latter’s career.
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Wednesday, 23 January, 2013
burst ‘hit Earth
Wanted: ‘Adventurous’ woman to birth neanderthal
gamma ray burst, the most powerful explosion known in the Universe, may have hit the Earth in the 8th Century. In 2012 researchers found evidence that our planet had been struck by a blast of radiation during the Middle Ages, but there was debate over what kind of cosmic event could have caused this. Now a study suggests it was the result of two black holes or neutron stars merging in our galaxy. This collision would have hurled out vast amounts of energy. The research is published in the journal Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society. Last year, a team of researchers found that some ancient cedar trees in Japan had an unusual level of a radioactive type of carbon known as carbon-14. In Antarctica, too, there was a spike in levels of a form of beryllium - beryllium-10 - in the ice. These isotopes are created when intense radiation hits the atoms in the upper atmosphere, suggesting that a blast of energy had once hit our planet from space. Using tree rings and ice-core
data, researchers were able to pinpoint that this would have occurred between the years AD 774 and AD 775, but the cause of the event was a puzzle. The possibility of a supernova an exploding star - was put forward, but then ruled out because the debris from such an event would still be visible in telescopes today. Another team of US physicists recently published a paper suggesting that an unusually large solar flare from the Sun could have caused the pulse of energy. However some others in the scientific community disagree because they do not think that the energy produced would tally with the levels of carbon-14 and beryllium-10 found. So now German researchers have offered up another explanation: a massive explosion that took place within the Milky Way. one of the authors of the paper, Professor Ralph Neuhauser, from the Institute of Astrophysics at the University of Jena, said: “We looked in the spectra of short gamma-ray bursts to estimate whether this would be consistent with the production rate of carbon-14 and beryllium-10 that
we observed - and [we found] that is fully consistent.” These enormous emissions of energy occur when black holes, neutron stars or white dwarfs collide - the galactic mergers take just seconds, but they send out a vast wave of radiation. Prof Neuhauser said: “Gamma-ray bursts are very, very explosive and energetic events, and so we considered from the energy what would be the distance given the energy observed. “our conclusion was it was 3,000 to 12,000 light-years away and this is within our galaxy.” Although the event sounds dramatic, our medieval ancestors might not have noticed much. If the gamma-ray burst happened at this distance, the radiation would have been absorbed by our atmosphere, only leaving a trace in the isotopes that eventually found their way into our trees and the ice. The researchers do not think it even emitted any visible light. RARE EvENTS observations of deep space suggest that gamma ray-bursts are rare. They are thought to happen at the most every 10,000 years per
galaxy, and at the least every million years per galaxy. Prof Neuhauser said it was unlikely Planet Earth would see another one soon, but if we did, this time it could make more of an impact. If a cosmic explosion happened at the same distance as the 8th Century event, it could knock out our satellites. But if it occurred even closer - just a few hundred light-years away - it would destroy our ozone layer, with devastating effects for life on Earth. However, this, said Prof Neuhauser, was “extremely unlikely”. Commenting on the research, Professor Adrian Melott from the University of Kansas, US, said that although he thought a short gamma-ray burst was a possible conclusion, his group’s research suggested that a solar flare was more likely based on observations of Sun-like stars in our galaxy. He said: “A solar proton event and a short gamma-ray burst are both possible explanations, but based on the rates that we know about in the Universe, the gamma-ray burst explanation is about 10,000 times less likely to be true in that time period.”
Harvard professor has hatched a plan to bring back the Neanderthals—but he needs an “adventurous” female volunteer to deliver a knuckle-dragging bundle of joy. George Church, a geneticist who helped pioneer the Human Genome Project, says it is now possible to create artificial Neanderthal DNA from bone samples, put the DNA into stem cells, inject those cells into an embryo, and then implant into a woman willing to give birth to a Neanderthal baby, the Independent reports. “It depends on a hell of a lot of things, but I think it can be done,” the professor, who says the plan would require “extremely adventurous female human” to serve as a surrogate mother, tells der Spiegel. The benefits of bringing back our long-extinct relatives include the fact that they may prove to be more intelligent than modern humans, and “when the time comes to deal with an epidemic or getting off the planet or whatever, it’s conceivable that their way of thinking could be beneficial,” the professor says. neWS DeSK
British granny sentenced in Bali for cocaine possession
N Indonesian court sentenced a British grandmother to death today for smuggling cocaine worth $2.5 million in her suitcase onto the resort island of Bali—even though prosecutors had sought only a 15-year sentence. Lindsay Sandiford, 56, wept when judges handed down the sentence and declined to speak to reporters on her way back to prison, covering her face with a floral scarf. She had claimed in court that she was forced to take the drugs into the country by a gang that was threatening to hurt her children. Click for more on her May 2012 bust. neWS DeSK
Cuba finally gets faster internet — in one direction
fiber-optic cable to Venezuela is up and running and surfing the Internet in Cuba is no longer like watching Fidel Castro’s beard grow, though connections are still pretty slow overall, analysts tell the Miami Herald. But the faster Internet only seems to be moving in one direction, with inbound traffic to Cuba going via cable and outbound traffic going via the old satellite links that made the island’s Internet connections among the world’s slowest. A researcher at Internet-monitoring firm Renesys says the faster connection appears to be another sign Cuba is becoming “freer and more open”— especially since it sped up on the same day that new rules making it easier to leave the island came into effect, the BBC reports. The researcher says he doesn’t believe Cuba has a Chinese-style firewall operating, as the traffic patterns do not show any sign of the periodic slowing down associated with censorship software. neWS DeSK
NORTHUmBERLAND: A red squirrel in the snow. The white stuff has blanketed Britain, resulting in school closures and serious travel disruption. AGeNCIeS
Groupon yanks gun-related deals
‘Quadruple helix’ DNA seen in human cells Cambridge University scientists say they have seen four-stranded DNA at work in human cells for the first time. The famous “molecule of life”, which carries our genetic code, is more familiar to us as a double helix. But researchers tell the journal Nature Chemistry that the “quadruple helix” is also present in our cells, and in ways that might possibly relate to cancer. They suggest that control of the structures could provide novel ways to fight the disease. “The existence of these structures may be loaded when the cell has a certain genotype or a certain dysfunctional state,” said Prof Shankar Balasubramanian from Cambridge’s department of chemistry.
“We need to prove that; but if that is the case, targeting them with synthetic molecules could be an interesting way of selectively targeting those cells that have this dysfunction,” he told BBC News. TAg AND TRACK It will be exactly 60 years ago in February that James Watson and Francis Crick famously burst into the pub next to their Cambridge laboratory to announce the discovery of the “secret of life”. What they had actually done was describe the way in which two long chemical chains wound up around each other to encode the information cells need to build and maintain our bodies. Today, the pair’s modern counterparts in the university city continue to work on DNA’s complexities. neWS DeSK
RoUPoN has dropped all current and future gun-related deals after what it says was pressure from customers, the Los Angeles Times reports. The daily deals site says all shooting range, conceal-and-carry classes, and clay shooting deals have been suspended while it “reviews internal standards.” Groupon joins several other firms that have backed away from gun-related businesses in the wake of the Sandy Hook school shooting. A Texas gun shop owner affected by the move is calling for a boycott, CNET reports. “I’m asking everyone in the Second Amendment community to boycott Groupon, because the message they’re sending is, ‘Look, we do not want to support lawabiding citizens taking time out of their schedule to learn the safety surrounding firearms,’” he said after a promotion for his concealed-handgun training course was abruptly canceled. neWS DeSK
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Wednesday, 23 January, 2013
clarke sprains ankle at training
Pakistan ready for South Africa test
Ross taylor set to return to competitive cricket
Australia's bid to salvage a 2-2 series draw against Sri Lanka is likely to be made without the captain Michael Clarke, who is an unlikely starter for Wednesday's fifth oDI in Hobart after suffering a sprained ankle in a training mishap. Clarke rolled his ankle as the team prepared for the final match of a series they can only level at 2-2 following Sunday's wash-out in Sydney, and was due to have the injury assessed during Tuesday afternoon. But he is extremely doubtful to recover in time, leaving George Bailey likely to lead the team at Bellerive oval. Bailey stood in at the pre-match captain's press conference and said Clarke would be given until the last minute on Wednesday to prove his fitness. "He's heading off for a scan now," Bailey told reporters in Hobart. "Hopefully it's all clear. He'll be given right up until the toss tomorrow to prove that he's right to go. Hopefully that scan is clear. There will obviously be a little bit of pain but if he's 100% he'll play." If Clarke is sidelined it will weaken Australia's batting line-up significantly. Unless the selectors call in another batsman as cover, Glenn Maxwell and Moises Henriques would likely both play as batting allrounders at Nos. 6 and 7. "I think if you're replacing Michael Clarke with anyone it's a step down, and that's no disrespect to whoever needs to replace him, but he's an outstanding player," Bailey said. "Whenever you're losing the experience and calibre of player it's a challenge, which hopefully guys step up into. That's what we're hoping.
AKISTAN may be touring South Africa with a relatively inexperienced squad but they would be up for the challenge of taking on the Proteas, Pakistan captain Misbah-ulHaq said in Johannesburg. “This team has done really well over the last two and a half years. It’s a big challenge to come here and play against the No 1 test side in their conditions - it’s really tough. "But this team is ready to take on new challenges, and we really want to perform well here in South Africa,” Misbah told a news conference ahead of the tree-test series against South Africa. Misbah and coach Dav Whatmore were under no illusions as to the size of the challenge that lay ahead of them as they attempt to beat South Africa in their own backyard. “South Africa’s batting, with Smith, Kallis and Amla is very strong, and we will have to bat really well against the bowling of Steyn, Morkel and Philander,” said Misbah. “But this is a young side – none of the bowlers except Umar Gul have ever toured here, and they love to take on challenges. It’s time to take it one step further.” For Pakistan, the South African conditions are a double-edged sword. on the one hand, as Misbah pointed out, their bowlers will enjoy the extra pace and bounce on offer. “It’s a matter of adapting to the conditions. Junaid Khan, Mohammad Irfan and Saeed Ajmal will enjoy the conditions, while the batsmen will have to focus on dealing with the bounce and pace to be ready for the
first test.” “If we hit the right areas, we feel we have the players to put pressure on the opposition,” said Whatmore. one player who could do just that is Mohammad Irfan, at just over seven-foot tall, the left-arm paceman is hard to miss and should be well suited to South African pitches. “He’s earned his place in the squad, and while he is yet to play a test match, he’s done really well domestically and in the shorter versions of the game. It remains to see whether he gets selected, but he’ll certainly extract the bounce on these pitches.” one area which is a concern for the tourists is the lack of test cricket they have played recently. They are coming off a morale-boosting 2-1 one-day international away series victory over India but have not
played a test series since losing to Sri Lanka in July last year. Misbah was under no illusions as to how the lack of test cricket would hamper his team but he was confident that they could overcome this. “As a team it is very difficult when you not playing a format on a regular basis. You really have to work hard. But we have to adjust, you could say it is a limitation for us but we are professionals, we have to do well,” he said. Pakistan will play three tests against South Africa with the first match set to start on February 1 in Johannesburg. The second test begins on February 14 in Cape Town before the final match starts on February 22 in Centurion. The tour also includes two T20 internationals and five one-day internationals.
Former New Zealand captain Ross Taylor's self-imposed exile from competitive cricket is set to come to an end this week when he turns out for Central Districts in the Plunket Shield, New Zealand's first-class competition. Taylor was removed from the New Zealand captaincy in all formats in December and replaced by Brendon McCullum, who had the backing of the coach, Mike Hesson. Taylor decided to take time off from the game because of the manner in which he was ousted, which led New Zealand Cricket to issue an apology for the breakdown in communication within the management. New Zealand's home series against England begins early next month, and the Plunket Shield match allows Taylor time in the middle before that contest. Taylor had skipped New Zealand's ongoing tour of South Africa but had hinted he wanted to return against England. Central Districts coach Alan Hunt was thrilled to have Taylor's experience in the side after a dismal run in the HRV Cup, the Twenty20 competition. "obviously when you get a world-class player coming into the side, you're never going to turn that down," Hunt told Fairfax Media. "I'm pleased to have him. We can help him get back on the cricket horse and get on with it."
Pakistan attack can challenge South Africa FIRDOSE MOONDA
HERE are some places Pakistan have not played cricket in for even longer than their home country. South Africa is one of them. Having last played a Test here in 2007, India is the only other place Pakistan have not featured in whites for the last six years although they played a one-day series in India recently. South Africa remains an uncharted territory for much of the squad. It has been so infrequently visited that none of the current Test bowling attack have played a Test in the country. They have missed out. Known for their pace and bounce, South African surfaces are among the favourites of quicks the world over and Pakistan's pack cannot wait to get stuck in. "Junaid Khan would love to bowl in these conditions and Mohammed Irfan will do well if he can put the ball in the right areas," Misbah-ul-Haq, the Pakistan captain, said after arriving in Johannesburg. The closest Junaid has got to South Africa is its neighbour, Zimbabwe, where he made his debut in September 2011. He played second fiddle to Aizaz Cheema in that match but has since overtaken Cheema with three fivewicket hauls from eight matches. Being a left-armer he may have half an eye on Graeme Smith with the South Africa captain having been susceptible to many southpaws over the years. At 7' 1", Irfan had caught the eye of the South African media well before Pakistan's arrival in the country. Knowing the kind of bounce Morne Morkel can extract from surfaces, the hype around what someone eight inches taller may be able to do has grown. So has the expectation over how South Africa's batsmen will deal with
Saeed Ajmal. They have seen him once before, in a Test in 2010 in Dubai when he took three wickets but he has since developed into the magician that ran circles around the then No.1 ranked England. Facing Ajmal will be South Africa's first significant test against spin since becoming the No. 1 team. Misbah suspects that Ajmal will also enjoy what South Africa has to offer. "Saeed Ajmal is the world's top spinner and in these conditions you get turn and bounce especially on the fourth and fifth days," he said. While the bowlers are looking forward to assistance, the batsmen are
readying themselves for a much sterner examination. South Africa is regarded as one of the toughest places to score runs, especially for the top-order. of Pakistan's line-up, Taufeeq Umar, Misbah, Younis Khan and Mohammed Hafeez have all batted in South Africa before but the younger players such as Asad Shafiq, Azhar Ali and Nasir Jamshed will have their first taste of these conditions. The pace of the pitches will take some getting used to. Shafiq has played in New Zealand, West Indies and the subcontinent while Jamshed, who starred in the one-dayers against India, has yet to make his Test debut. With limited touring op-
portunities because of their schedule, Misbah conceded that preparations have not been ideal although they have made the best of what they have. "We have to bat well. Whenever we go abroad, we try to practice against bounce and pace. We use different tactics for that and we make sure we get ready before the Test matches," he said. "It's really difficult when you are not playing a format on a regular basis. You really have to work hard. But that's how it is. We are not playing more Test matches. But we have to adjust because we are professionals." Dav Whatmore, Pakistan's coach,
suggested batting could be rewarding for those who employ some patience. "It can be difficult, because of the general consistency of the slightly higher bounce and the pace might be more than normal," he said. "But if you get over that they're pretty good batting conditions as well, a bit like Australia. our young guys who get through that will be in for good times." Pakistan will play a three-day warmup match against a fairly strong South African Invitation XI in East London where the surface is traditionally sluggish. That could be South Africa's way of softening the batsman up especially as historically the hosts have prepared seamer-friendly pitches against subcontinent sides and tried to scare their batsmen out. They may be wary of trying the same thing this time because Pakistan have a good attack of their own. While pre-series talk will rage about how competitive a less "unpredictable," as Smith called them, Pakistan will be against South Africa, there is also an undercurrent of a campaign running through the visitors' camp. It is both a drive to show off their consistency and resolve and to talk openly about promoting the return of cricket to their home. "Every stadium was full at the T20 tournament in Pakistan. There were no concerns and everyone enjoyed the game," Misbah said. "Ten of the players in the current Test side played in the final and there were no issues. Pakistan is such a big cricketing nation and the world really has to think about bringing cricket back there. Stadiums are full and nothing is happening." The former ICC chief executive Haroon Lorgat, who is a South African, has been doing some consultative work for the PCB on the matter as well.
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16 Sports 10 corps Reds win
Wednesday, 23 January, 2013
PCB may hire foreign security experts for T20 league LAHORE
HE Pakistan Cricket Board is considering the option of hiring foreign security experts to set up the security plan for the forthcoming Pakistan Super League T20 tournament which begins from March. A top official in the PSL secretariat confirmed that there was a proposal to hire foreign security experts to not only coordinate the security plan for the league but also ensure that ICC anti-corruption measures were put in place for the event which begins from March 26. “We will be in touch with the ICC to invite their anti-corruption unit officers to Pakistan to satisfy themselves that the league is well guarded against corrupt elements,” the official reported to have said. “The proposal to have foreign security experts is being looked into keeping in mind that most of the T20 leagues
We want to win all trophies: Xavi BARCA AGenCieS
Barcelona midfielder Xavi is targeting a clean sweep of trophies this season after the disappointment of missing out on several pieces of silverware last year. Barca lost their La Liga title to Real Madrid in 2012 and were also beaten in the semi-finals of the Champions League by eventual winners Chelsea. "The team is very competitive and we want to do well in every competition. We'd like to win the lot but we have to watch our step," Xavi told Fifa.com. "The talent is there for sure [to have another historic year], but we need luck to be on our side too." Speaking about the Champions League semi-final, when Barca led 2-0 in the second leg at home and saw Blues' skipper John Terry get sent off, Xavi added: "Well, we've just been talking about how things either go your way or they don't, and in that case they didn't, especially in the games against Chelsea at Stamford Bridge and then the Camp Nou, where we had the tie in the bag, with them down to 10 men, only to let it slip. "The same happened in the league. This year we've been turning those kinds of things our way, making every game count. "My feeling is we were just a bit below our usual standard last season and we ended up paying for it." Tito Vilanova's side have been drawn to face AC Milan in the last 16 of the Champions League and Xavi is expecting a difficult contest. "They're a tough side. They keep it tight at the back and they've always made life very hard for us defensively," he said. "San Siro is not an easy place to go to either because the fans are very passionate. And if you look back through history you'll see that they've won more European Cups than us. "They might not be at their best right now but they always have players who can make life hard for you."
being held these days have input for their security plans from foreign experts. We are looking into hiring these same people because of their prior experience,” he said. The official said the proposal to have foreign security experts was being
looked into also to send a clear message to the overseas players and cricket world that security measures for the league will be top class. The PSL will feature five franchises with a pool of 30 overseas players to be available for signing on by these fran-
chise teams. The Pakistan Cricket Board is already apprehensive about the process of convincing foreign players to come to Pakistan and their respective boards to clear them for the PSL. “The statement coming from England from the professional players association is one indication about the difficulties we will face in this regard,” the official said. The players’ association representative in England has said they would ask counties to not give NoCs to players for the PSL because of security concerns about playing in Pakistan. Sources said the PCB is already in touch with other boards to convince them to support the PSL and make it a success. “Haroon Lorgat, the former CEo of the ICC, who has been hired by the PCB is also playing a role in contacting other boards and trying to convince them to allow their players to play in the PSL,” he said.
U-13 football trials, training begin LAHORE STAFF RePORT
As a part of AFC AID-27 Financial Assistant Programme, in the first phase, trials, training and coaching camp for PFF U-13 Football Youth Cup-2013 has already started which is going to be held from 27th January to 31st January, 2013. After the completion of the PFF U-13 Football Youth Cup the four best teams will qualified for PFF U-13 Football Festival. An official of the Pakistan Football Federation (PFF) said that under the supervision of Area Coordinators, the following coaches will select the teams to participate in AID-27 Youth Football Cup-2013. From Punjab Province Mr. Muhammad Rasheed, Bilal Butt and Siddique Qadri (Lahore Red), Mr. Zahid Niaz and Mr. Asghar Khan Anjum (Lahore Blue), Mr. Muhammad Habib and
Mr. Shahzad Anwar (Lahore-Faisalabad Zone), Numan Ibrahim and Altaf Hussain (Faisalabad-Sargodha Zone), from Sindh Province Mr. Hassan Baloch and Mr. Khalid Nawaz (Karachi Blue), Mr. Muhammad Javed (Karachi Red), Mr. Zahid Taj and Mr. Javed Somroo (Karachi-Hyderabad Zone), from KPK Province Mr. Saeed Ullah and Mr. Fazale-Ghaffar (Banu-Dir Zone), Mr. Saghir Muhammad and Saleem Khan (Peshawar-Nowshera Zone) and from Islamabad and Balochistan Province Mr. Muhammad Asghar and Mr. Muhammad Karim (Quetta Zone), Mr. Muhammad Dawood and Mr. Essa Khan (Chaman-Quetta Zone) and Mr. Najeeb Ullah Najmi and Mr. Abdul Sattar (Pindi-Islamabad Zone). Area coordinators for AID-27 coaches are Mr. Shahzad Anwar for Punjab, Sajjad Mahmood Khan for Islamabad & Balochistan Province, Mr. Gohar
Zaman for KPK province and Mr. Nasir Ismail for Sindh. They are responsible to supervise the selection, training camp and Youth Cup in their area for better performance of the players and coaches. Moreover, Area Coordinators are also responsible to update PFF with all aspects of selection, camp training, team building and performance of all team coaches of Youth Cup and U-13 Festival. AFC AID-27 Programme (AID27) was started in 1996 by AFC to help the participating Member Associations in order to develop football at the grassroots and youth level as well as to promote women’s football and futsal by ensuring that more qualified coaches are employed, enhancing the education of those involved in the game, assisting in the employment of administrative staff and increasing participation of the national teams at AFC Youth Competitions and Festivals of Football.
league to help fans see good cricket: zaka LAHORE STAFF RePORT
Chairman PCB Ch Zaka Ashraf on Tuesday visited Suhail Ahmad home town to condole the death of his mother. Talking to media in Gujranwala PCB Chairman said that holding of Pakistan Super League would let fans a chance to watch good cricket and the arrival of international cricketers would present a good image of Pakistan. The Pakistan Super League (PSL) would kick off as per schedule, he said, adding that the cricket board was in contact with other countries in this regard. He further said that Pakistan players are talented and that series would
be a hard-fought series. He was confident that Pakistan would put up a good show against the world’s top ranked South Africa.
coAS Polo cup LAHORE STAFF RePORT
The 10 Corps Red Team won the Chief of Army Staff Polo Cup here at the Fortress Stadium on Tuesday. 10 Corps Red Team won defeated 4 Corps in the final by five to four and a half goals difference. Major Haseeb Minhas scored four goals and Capt Ahad Sultan scored one goal in the last chukker while Maj omer Minhas scored three goals and Lt Col Shaharyar Munir scored one goal in 10 Corps (Reds) win. In the subsidiary final played between 10 Corps (Blues) and 30 Corps, the formers won the third place. 10 Corps Blue win came with a score of 10 to four and a half goal margin. Maj Rab Nawaz Tiwana was the top scorer with six goals while Lance Dafedar Saqib Rahim scored four goals for 10 Corps (Blues). From the losing side, 30 Corps team scored only two goals and got two and a half goals on handicap. Later chief guest Maj Gen Shahid Baig Mirza, General officer Commanding Lahore, gave the trophies to the winners.
Suarez is a winner: Gerrard LONDON AGenCieS
Liverpool captain Steven Gerrard claims striker Luis Suarez transforms from a quiet family man into a fighter the moment he steps onto the pitch. The Uruguay international scored his 20th goal of the season the first Reds player to do so since Fernando Torres in 2009-10 - in the weekend's 5-0 win over Norwich. Suarez, who turns 26 on Thursday, has become a talisman for the side, easing the burden on Gerrard who has carried the club for the best part of a decade. Suarez has attracted his fair share of criticism after a race row with Patrice Evra and admitting diving to try to win a penalty. But Gerrard believes the general portrayal of his team-mate is often inaccurate, although he accepts when it comes to playing football Suarez has only one aim and that is to win. "He is very quiet in the dressing room and around the place," said the England captain. "He is a family man: every time you ask him what he is doing he is with his family. "When he comes onto the pitch he turns into a fighter, he turns into a winner." Gerrard said Suarez deserved to play in the Champions League but could not say whether not qualifying would result in the Uruguayan being lured away by other clubs. With Liverpool seven points adrift of fourth place their chances of re-joining Europe's elite club competition may have to wait until at least next season. But the Reds captain was in no doubt Suarez was integral to the Merseysiders' chances of success in the future. "I think he is world class. He has everything and we are very lucky to have him in our team and at our club," said the midfielder, speaking at a Football Writers' Association gala tribute dinner in his honour.
He also said that ICC is responsible for providing security to Pakistan women cricket team in India. We in touch with ICC in this regard.
League a step forward in bringing cricket to Pakistan: Mujeeb LAHORE STAFF RePORT
Former Chairman, Pakistan Cricket Board, Mujeeb ur Rehman has said that Pakistan Super League is a step forward for bringing back international cricket to Pakistan. “It is a heartening sign that PCB has officially launched the details of PSL which will be participated by a galaxy of foreign players and once again Pakistan will be centre of a major cricket activity when the mega event will roll into action in March-April this year,” he said in a statement from Doha here on Tuesday after 13 years since leaving the office way back in 1999. He said Pakistan cricket suffered a lot owing to security reasons in past four years and the steps taken by PCB for launching its own impressive league will ensure the re-
turn of international cricket to Pakistan. “With the visit of foreign players from different cricket playing countries a major cricket activity will be generated which will enhance the image of Pakistan as a country which is safe to organize elite cricket events “,he said adding “ The start of the league will mark a new era of exciting cricket in Pakistan.” Mujeeb said the 100 million US dollars league will lure leading cricketers to Pakistani cricket grounds and by that way people will see high quality cricket in their own grounds which become deserted during past many years as foreign teams declined to visit Pakistan owing to security concerns . He praised the leadership qualities of Chairman, PCB, Mohammad Zaka Asrhaf for taking constructive measures to start PSL and revival of international cricket in
Pakistan. “ PSL will not only be a money earning venture but also a step forward to give new dimensions to Pakistan cricket which badly needs the return of international cricket “,said the former chief of PCB. Mujeeb ur Rehman said the PSL will be an ideal opportunity for the home players to polish their skills and underline their cricket talent by excelling in the league. “ We should encourage PCB for starting t PSL because the successful holding of the event will inspire to its following edition with the help of new ideas and more organized efforts “,he added. He also acknowledge the efforts of International Cricket Council for supporting PCB’s stance for the resumption of international cricket in Pakistan. “ That day is not far when foreign teams will start touring Pakistan, ending a four
year drought of international cricket “,said the former Chairman of PCB, himself a keen closer of the game . He praised the performance of Pakistan cricket team in its recent tour of India and said the performance graph of the team is going up with each passing day despite the hard fact that it did not play any cricket in its own grounds in past many years. “ Pak team is a mixture of experience and youth and it is good to see that young players are making their mark in the team by putting up splendid show “,he said adding“Nasir Jamshid, Mohammad Irfan and Junaid Khan are the few examples of the talent inducted in the team”. He expressed the optimism that Pak team will maintain the flow of its success by giving much improved performance during the tour of South Africa.
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Wednesday, 23 January, 2013
Ferrer survives in ‘miracle’ fightback, Li back in semis
AVID Ferrer stared defeat full in the face three times but staged an epic comeback from two sets down to beat fellow Spaniard Nicolas Almagro and reach the semi-finals of the Australian open on Tuesday. The fourth seed looked to be heading for the exit when, having been dominated by some brilliant play from the 10th seed for the first two sets, he faced Almagro serving for the match at 5-4 in the third. It is not for nothing that Ferrer is known as one of the best fighters in tennis, however, and he hustled along the baseline to claw his way back into the contest and take the third set on Rod Laver Arena. Twice more Almagro had chances to serve out for victory but he blew them both and Ferrer, who had won all 12 of their previous meetings, emerged a 4-6 4-6 7-5 7-6 6-2 winner after three hours and 44 minutes on Rod Laver Arena. "It was a miracle I won this match," said Ferrer, who will face Novak Djokovic or Tomas Berdych in the last four. "I tried to fight and do my best (but) next round... I need to play my best tennis, better than today. Now I will need to rest but I have a day and a half." Almagro
contributed to his own downfall by stuttering when he had victory within his sights and his body let him down in the last two sets when he was hindered by a leg injury. "I think I played my best tennis today but it wasn't good enough to beat David," he said. "I don't want think that it's a mentality problem. If I had a mentality problem, I think I wouldn't have won the first two sets." Ferrer, 30, has lost all four of his previous grand slam semi-finals, including defeats to world number one Djokovic at the U.S. open in 2007 and last year. He will undoubtedly be hoping the defending
champion is still tired after his marathon fourth round victory over Stan Wawrinka when he takes on fifth seed Berdych in the final singles match on Rod Laver Arena. China's Li Na earlier showed she had the legs to go the distance when she reached her third semi-final in four years at the Australian open with a 7-5 6-3 victory over fourth seed Agnieszka Radwanska. Radwanska had come into the contest on a run of 13 successive wins but looked underpowered as she was bludgeoned into submission by Li in their tight 102-minute contest. There were 10 service breaks in the
iron man djokovic into australian Open semi-finals MELBOURNE: Novak Djokovic showed no signs of any lasting fatigue to overcome Czech fifth seed Tomas Berdych 6-1 4-6 6-1 6-4 on Tuesday and advance to the Australian open semi-finals. The world number one, bidding to become the first man to win three successive Australian open titles since the game went professional, had been forced into a marathon five-set, five-hour fourth round clash against Stanislas Wawrinka on Sunday. Berdych had felt that energy sapping clash could give him an opportunity to secure his second career win over the Serb and first since their Wimbledon semi-final in 2010. Djokovic, however, bounced on his toes throughout and effortlessly scrambled and slid across court to wrap up victory in two hours, 31 minutes and set up a semi-final clash with Spain's David Ferrer. AGenCieS
21 games and Li grabbed six of them to set up a contest against second seed Maria Sharapova, who blew away her Russian compatriot Ekaterina Makarova 6-2 6-2 in the late afternoon match. The former French open champion clearly likes the bright blue courts at Melbourne Park, even if she will probably need to get her unforced error count under the 40 mark if she wants to reach a second final after 2011. "I really don't know what it is here," the sixth seed said. "It seems whenever I come down here my results are always quite consistent, no big setbacks or anything. "I'm not sure whether it's the winter training but it does seem like I'm just better at this tournament." Radwanska, who had not lost a set on her way to the quarter-finals, said it was possible that she had paid the price for playing and winning warm-up events in Auckland and Sydney. "I could feel I was playing already a lot of matches. But of course playing every second day helps a little bit that I could rest between the matches," she said. "But definitely I think I wasn't fast enough today. Especially from the beginning of the match, I was really running a lot. It cost me a little too much power in the beginning of the match."
Leading players to get their way on doping controls MELBOURNE AGenCieS
Novak Djokovic, Andy Murray and other leading tennis players calling for increased blood testing in tennis could get their wish in 2013 with the introduction of athlete biological passports to the sport. In the aftermath of Lance Armstrong's admission last week that he was on drugs when he won each of his seven Tour de France titles, several top players at the Australian open have revealed that they have received relatively few blood tests. World number one Djokovic said last week that he had not been blood tested "in six or seven months". The biological passport is a method of monitoring selected biological parameters over time, rather than trying to detect individual substances, and was considered one of the
main reasons for the success in catching cheats in cycling. "We're looking very, very closely at it and I think there's a reasonably good chance that will be operational probably towards the end of 2013," Dr Stuart Miller, the head of the International Tennis Federation (ITF)'s anti-doping effort, told BBC radio on Monday. In 2011, the most recent set of figures available, the ITF conducted only 21 blood tests out of competition and 131 in total, a figure well outweighed by urine tests, which numbered 2,019. At the Paris Masters last october, U.S. open champion Murray led the calls for more blood tests in tennis, a view backed up in Melbourne by Roger Federer and Djokovic. Blood tests are more expensive to administer than urine tests and Miller admitted that they were subject to financial constraints.
mELBOURNE: Victoria Azarenka plays a shot against Ekaterina makarova.
Wolff leaves Williams for Mercedes LONDON AGenCieS
AgenciesLewis Hamilton's Mercedes Formula one team announced a major shake-up on Monday with Austrian Toto Wolff arriving from rivals Williams as a significant minority stakeholder and executive director. Wolff, who will retain his shareholding in Williams where his Scottish wife Susie is a development driver, will also take over coordination of all of Mercedes motorsport activities, parent company Daimler said in a statement. The latter role was previously held by Norbert Haug, whose departure was announced last month. Austrian Niki Lauda, the retired triple champion and non-executive chairman of Mercedes GP, will also acquire a 10 percent stake in the team in a management trio completed by principal Ross Brawn.
Sharapova juggernaut rolls into semis MELBOURNE AGenCieS
Maria Sharapova's biggest challenge to achieving her second Australian open title, apart from Victoria Azarenka and Serena Williams, could actually be between her ears. Not that anyone has managed to exploit any mental deficiencies in the world number two... yet. The Russian not only continued her perfect run in Australian open quarter-finals on Tuesday by swatting aside Russian compatriot Ekaterina Makarova 6-2 6-2 to set up a semi-final against Li Na, she also set a record at the grand slam. With her 66-minute victory, Sharapova has now dropped just nine games in total, the fewest number conceded by a semi-finalist at the tournament. Mon-
ica Seles conceded 12 games on her way to the 1991 semi-finals. Seles went on to win the title. The world number two, along with defending champion Azarenka and 15times grand slam winner Williams, have been a class above the rest of the women's draw at Melbourne Park with few now expecting anyone other than the trio to win the title. Sharapova has refused to get too far ahead of herself, dragging out the "one match at a time" cliche after each round, though she said after her demolition of Makarova that she was pleased she was staying mentally switched on during matches despite their one-sided nature. "That's always one of the toughest things, keeping that focus, especially when you have when you feel like you're doing the right things and you have your opponent in
the right position," Sharapova said. "You really have to follow through with what you've done and keep doing it (and) keeping your head in the right direction." The right direction is lifting the Daphne Akhurst Memorial Trophy for the second time and Sharapova came into the quarter-final brimming with confidence. Not only had she not dropped a set, she had also not lost any of her previous five Australian open quarter-final matches, with one of those victories against Makarova last year. The 24-year-old Makarova was expected to be a tough opponent having already beaten 11th seed Marion Bartoli and fifth seed Angelique Kerber to make the quarter-finals and despite Sharapova's rampage through the four previous rounds, she thought her 19th-seeded compatriot would be a challenge.
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Wednesday, 23 January, 2013
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PBSF to hand over PM’s cash prize to snooker champion Asif LAHORE STAFF RePORT
Pakistan Billiards and Snooker Federation has received the cash prize of Rs 1.5 million announced by Prime Minister ,Raja Pervez Ashraf for Muhammad Asif for winning the IBSF World snooker title . “As per the announcement of the Prime Minister during a Public Rally in Faisalabad for Asif for winning the World title has been released by the Pakistan Sports Board”,said a spokesman of PBSF here on Tuesday. The cheque will soon be haded over to Asif at a ceremony, he added. The PBSF wish to place on record their deep appreciation for this magnanimous recognition of this coveted title which will go a long way in encouraging the Federation to further promote the game of Snooker in Pakistan as well as our Snooker players to perform and excel in International Competitions and bring laurels for our country, he added. The following cash awards have been announced for Asif, Federal Sports Minister, Rs.10 Million– as per the Sports Policy of the Government (Gold Medalist), Chief Minister of Sindh,Rs.01 Million, Chief Minister of Punjab,Rs.01 Million,Sports MinisterKhyber PakhtunKhwa Rs.01 Million.
cavendish makes winning start
Alonso hints at Red Bull snub in past Weightlifting trials LONDON
SAN LUIS AGenCieS
Mark Cavendish began 2013 by winning the opening stage of the Tour de San Luis in Argentina on Monday. The Manxman, racing for new team omega PharmaQuick Step after his winter switch, pipped Sacha Modolo and Alessandro Petacchi to the line after a crash in the final kilometre mixed up the field. Cavendish held on until 200 metres from the line before making his move and snatching victory. Alberto Contador is also competing in this event, but was not among the leaders on the opening stage. Cavendish admitted the last kilometres were "hectic". "All the teams are fresh and motivated, so it was real, real chaos," he said. "It was hard to stay together. I had a few guys with me, and in the finishing straight, within 1km or 400m it was just kind of about staying at the front. "It was hard with a bit of a dip into the finish and nothing really marking 100m or 200m, so I just kind of jumped at 250m. I knew when I jumped I'd have a good shot at it, even though there was some wind. "It feels good to be fresh with a good bunch of guys and on such a fast bike. The guys really looked after me, so I had 100 per cent energy at the finish. I'm so happy I could win." Cavendish added: "The team did a great job for me today [Monday]. "We were the first team to start riding, with Martin Velits at the beginning, we were present at the front the whole day. "We got help from other teams too, the sprinter teams, but the guys just rode so strong and stayed with me the whole day. It is so nice to have a team with me that is 100 per cent committed. I'm so, so proud of the guys today [Monday]."
Fernando Alonso hit back at criticism by Red Bull advisor Dr Helmut Marko and believes the Austrian is upset because the Ferrari driver rejected his team in the past. Alonso was a free agent after opting to split with McLaren in 2007 but despite being courted by Red Bull, he opted to join Renault that year. Since then, he joined Ferrari and is widely hailed as one of the best drivers in the sport although he has yet to win a world championship for the storied Italian outfit. Last season, he went really close as he led the standings for a large part of the season but was eventually overtaken by Red Bull's Sebastian Vettel. The two were still locked in battle until the final race but Vettel beat his rival by a mere three-point margin. Marko has since tried to portray Alonso in a negative light and stated recently
that Vettel was a focused driver while the Spaniard was always "busy with politics and funny comments". The Ferrari driver hinted that Marko's animosity stems from the fact that the duo did not have successful talks in the past, possibly alluding to previous attempts by Red Bull to sign the driver on their roster. "After hearing 'no', it always hurts a little more each time," Alonso told Totalrace. "I don't think I am good at politics, I just drive the car." "Some recent remarks have surprised me, but I can't see the sense in them. "Some say they don't read them, don't hear them and don't see them, before adding that they are not influenced by them: so clearly they do read them, maybe at night." He also declared that he considers new Mercedes driver Lewis Hamilton to be the fastest driver within the circuit. "Why do I say Hamilton is the strongest? Because it's what I think, it's my personal opinion and there is nothing political in that," he said at Wrooom 2013, Ferrari's pre-season curtain-raiser.
LAHORE STAFF RePORT
The Pakistan Weightlifting Federation in collaboration with Punjab Weightlifting Association is organizing open trials on February 26, at Punjab University Ground weightlifting training center near Chaburjee to select probables for national youth team which will participate in the Asian Youth Games scheduled to be held in China this year. Weightlifting players born in 1997, 1998 & 1999 will be eligible to participate in these trials. All those desirous to participate in these trials are advised to bring with them the proof of their age and registration with the respective District Weightlifting Associations.
Gay claims California title in play-off HUMANA AGenCieS
American Brian Gay won a three-man play-off to claim the Humana Challenge title in California after Scott Stallings threw away a five-shot lead on the final day. one a day which included three 62s, with only three men over par for their round, Stallings was four under through 15 and 26 under overall, which would have been enough to claim the crown in La Quinta. A bogey at 16 - his second of the day after going blemish-free in his first three rounds - looked to have condemned him to a play-off, but there was worse to come as he dropped another shot at 18, leaving Gay, Charles Howell and Sweden's David Lingmerth to fight it out on 25 under. Lingmerth, one of the three who was 10 under for his third round, was first to go, bogeying the first play-off hole - the par-five 18th - as he found the water while the other two men birdied. The remaining two went to the
par-four 10th and while Gay birdied, Howell could only manage a bogey after hitting the bunker at the back of the green with his second shot, leaving his compatriot to claim the crown. Gay could have claimed the fourth PGA title of his career and first since 2009 without the need for a play-off had he not missed an eight-foot birdie putt on the 18th the first time around. "It was a rollercoaster," Gay said. "When I first finished, there was four guys on the same score. I didn't know who was done, who was still out. And then Scott and Charles are long hitters, I knew they had a mid-iron into 18. I figured at least one, if not both of them, would birdie 18. "So I was fortunate for that not to happen and have another chance. And boom, there we go. And I just felt like I kind of had a second life, another opportunity." He added: "It feels amazing right now. I'm still in a little bit of shock. It kind of happened so fast there at the end the way things went down." Stallings' day started off with him
aiming to become the first player since 1974 to play an entire PGA Tour event without carding a bogey, but he dropped a shot at the seventh and it got worse from there. "It is what it is," he said. "Coming down the stretch on the 72nd hole, you can't make mistakes like that. And it stinks, but it's something that I'll definitely learn from. "It's disappointing, but the fact is that at the end of the day, I get to play this game for a living." on a day of low scoring, there were stand-out performances from James Hahn, Kevin Campbell and Richard Lee. Hahn, joint leader after round one, took a share of fourth alongside Stallings on 24 under with a 10-under 62, which was matched by Campbell, while Lee aced the par-three 15th. Scotland's Martin Laird was the leading Briton on 16 under for a share of 47th, while Ross Fisher was 15 under and Greg owen finished last among those who made the cut on eight under after carding a final-round three-over 75.
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Wednesday, 22 January, 2013
Release suspects if you don’t have evidence, SC tells agencies g
CJ admonishes AG, FATA secretary for failing to produce evidence against ‘missing persons’ ISLAMABAD TAYYAB HUSSAin
HE Supreme Court of Pakistan on Tuesday admonished Attorney General for Pakistan Ifran Qadir and the FATA secretary for not presenting evidence against the missing persons, directing the government to release the missing prisoners of Adiala Jail if there was no evidence against the accused. The court warned that it would issue an order if the authorities failed in this regard. A three-member bench of the apex court headed by Chief Justice
Iftikhar Mohammad Chaudhry resumed the hearing of the case on Tuesday. The bench, which also included Justice Gulzar Ahmed and Justice Sheikh Azmat Saeed, deferred the proceedings on a request by Attorney General Irfan Qadir. The bench also allowed time until January 24 to the AG to seek instructions from the relevant authorities over the issue of a person kept in an internment centre in Malakand Agency. During the hearing, CJ Iftikhar Mohammad Chaudhry said the prisoners had been kept under illegal detention since June 26, 2011, but there was no proof submitted against the accused.
He said prima facie, the claim of recovery of hand-grenade, Kalashnikov and bullets magazine had no ground. The CJ said it seemed that the armed forces and intelligence agencies could not gather evidence against the accused and, therefore, they were kept at detention centres. He observed that prisoners could be not held for even a single second if there was no evidence against them. The AG appeared before the bench in connection with a plea moved by late Rohaifa Bibi, the mother of a detainee, seeking release of her son from an internment centre in the Tribal Areas. He apprised the bench that due to
paucity of time, he could not get in touch with the relevant quarters on Tuesday, besides, he was performing functions as acting presiding officer in Pakistan Bar Council elections. Qadir requested the bench to defer proceedings until Monday to enable him to contact with the authorities over the issue. The chief justice told him that the instant issue pertained to liberty of life of an individual. “Now, the issue is related to the federation as it is running the affairs of the tribal belt,” he said, adding that missing persons should be shifted to jail instead of detention centre if evidence against them were found. The CJ asked Raja Irshad,
counsel for agencies, to present a copy of the order that had authorised them to keep the held persons for an indefinite period in detention centres. Irshad said the forces had detained them in national interest. He said all accused were sent to detention centres according to the law. Upon this, the CJ said Pakistan had a written constitution and “you are saying that the persons were detained on ethical grounds”. He said if left to “their” discretion, there would be no courts in the country. The chief justice said action would be taken against those responsible if the detentions were proved illegal. The proceedings were later adjourned until January 24.
Taliban are not something uncontrollable: CJP ISLAMABAD APP
Chief Justice of Pakistan Iftikhar Muhammad Chaudhry on Tuesday rejected a stance of the Sindh advocate general over the issue of law and order in Karachi, saying the Taliban factor was not something that could not be controlled by the government. The court ordered the Sindh Police to arrest the assassins of MQM’s slain MPA Manzar Imam by Wednesday (today). He made the observations while heading a three-judge bench conducting suo motu hearing in progress made in implementation of its october 6, 2011 verdict on Karachi law and order. The CJ expressed his displeasure with the ongoing recovery of bodies and observed that when the police authorities had failed to arrest killers of Manzar Imam, the slain MQM MPA, how could it long to protect the lives of ordinary citizens. Addressing Advocate General for Sindh Abdul Fatah Malik, he said after their order on the situation, a calm prevailed over metropolitan city, but after a lapse of two months, the situation had started deteriorating with each passing day. “The reason is that you did not implement the verdict completely. We have pointed out militant wings in political parties and ordered its disbanding. We have asked for depoliticising of police force,” he added. He said the concerned authorities frustrated the orders of the high court and Supreme Court. “How could you issue ordinance over shoulder promotion for police officers when the court verdict was in the field?” he questioned and observed that there was even no law for awarding gallantry promotions.
lAHORe: Tehreek Minhajul Quran chief Dr Tahirul Qadri addresses a press conference on Tuesday. INP | STORY ON PAGe 04
LoC issue will be tackled bilaterally: India NEW DELHI Online
Indian External Affairs Minister Salman Khurshid on Tuesday said the Line of Control (LoC) issue would be tackled with Islamabad bilaterally. Addressing a news conference, Khurshid said India would analyse the situation and take steps forward after the atmosphere between the two countries returned to normal or near normal. Khurshid said until there was a visible change in the atmosphere, nothing should be said or done. Stressing that the focus of the government’s foreign policy was to “maintain peace with our neighbours”, Khurshid said, “We don’t want to take any decision in a hurry. We will consider the nation’s sentiment before taking the next decision in the matter.” Khurshid also came out in support of Home Minister Sushilkumar Shinde over his remarks on saffron terror. He said Shinde’s remarks that terror training was being imparted in camps run by the BJP and the RSS were factually correct. “our stated position is fully shared by the home minister. His statements are based on facts,” Khurshid said. “Any form of violence by extremists of any kind, irrespective of religion, is not good for India,” Khurshid said,
Pakistan decides to release all Indian fishermen ISLAMABAD Pakistan on Tuesday decided to release all Indian imprisoned fishermen. Interior Minister Rehman Malik said this during a press conference. Malik also said that all Indian fishermen would be released soon along with their ships after initial interrogation. The minister said Indian fishermen had been warned to not violate the territorial waters of Pakistan. The decision to release the prisoners is a goodwill gesture to India. The minister directed to the Karachi FIA director to have adding, “Terror does not have religion... we should not get distracted by a phrase here or a phrase there.” He appealed everyone, including those in the media, to “support us in our battle against terror”. “We are fighting terror against India. I urge the media and the people to help us fight unwholesome terror,” the minister said. Earlier on Sunday, Shinde said the BJP and its parent body, the Rashtriya
the fishermen sign an affidavit, saying that they would not violate Pakistani waters prior to their release. “We have decided to release all Indian fishermen in Pakistani jails and the process of scrutiny to decide how to go about the task will begin soon,” Malik said. Meanwhile, India also released four Pakistani fishermen on Tuesday. Earlier, Pakistani authorities had released as many as 15 Indian fishermen from the Malir Jail on Diwali as a goodwill gesture. Online Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS), were recruiting and training Hindu militants. However, later changing his stance, Shinde clarified that he only quoted newspaper reports to point out growing incidents of saffron militancy in the country. Shinde also claimed that the BJP used cultural nationalism to emotionally divide the country, whereas the Congress worked on policy of consensus.
He directed the AG to repatriate all officer posted in the police on deputation by Wednesday (today) and submit a report. Abdul Fatah Malik maintained that they had implemented each order of the court and answered it in their replies. He claimed that they arrested certain suspects from Taliban ranks who had been involved in the murder case of Manzar Imam. Malik said elements from the Bannu jailbreak were also involved in the incident, but for the time being, they would not disclose it because of the sensitivity of the issue. However, upon bench’s observation, he also admitted that the media had information about the facts. Malik further said they had a list of 5,000 Taliban who had made their way into Karachi. To another question, he said the ordinance for shoulder promotions for police force had lapsed and the old law was revived, adding that for the time being, they could not do it away due to stalemate legislation after the stay of the court. He requested the bench to grant them a specific timeframe so that they could do the required legislation. The chief justice told him that it was their prerogative to do legislation and queried how could the court pass such an order. He also took strong exception to reports about release of Ajmal Pahari from dozens of terrorism cases and directed the AG to submit a report over his release. on the formation of committees to resolve the issues, Justice Gulzar Ahmed remarked that such moves were initiated when there was lack of intention to settle the issues. Further proceedings were adjourned until February 6.
ECP chief says delimitation in Karachi unlikely before election KARACHI STAFF RePORT
Chief Election Commissioner Fakruddin G Ebrahim on Tuesday said the delimitation of electoral constituencies might not be possible in Karachi before the general election. Talking to reporters at Karachi airport, he said he had arrived to oversee the process of verification of electoral rolls in the city that was so far going smoothly. He said the commission had so far faced no difficulty in terms of law and order, adding that he had talked to the Karachi corps commander who had assured him that the army would fully support the ECP staff. To a query, Ebrahim replied that he would go every mile to ensure free and fair elections in the country. He said: “I would do whatever is necessary to hold fair elections.” The ECP chief said he wished to hold the election early, adding that the commission would work in close collaboration with any future interim government to
Published by Arif Nizami at Plot # 7, Al-Baber Centre, F/8 Markaz, Islamabad.
Editor: Arif Nizami
ensure that the next polls were transparent. “only fair elections guarantee our future,” Ebrahim, adding that all stakeholders were cooperating with the commission. Asked if election could be held given the current poor law and order, the chief election commissioner said the law and order in the country was satisfactory for holding polls.