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Rs 17.00 Vol IV No 36 19 Pages
Lahore — Peshawar Edition
Thursday, 8 August, 2013 Ramadan 29, 1434
STORY ON PAGE 03
STORY ON PAGE 02
STORY ON PAGE 03
STORY ON PAGE 02
Egypt could clear proMorsi sit-ins by Sunday
Young rock stars all set to rock the stage!
‘Qaeda plotted to take hostages at oil port’
PTI doesn’t want Bhagwandas as NAB chief
Ashes silicone bat hotspot under probe
Egypt’s presidency has announced that it has ended its attempts to bring the Muslim Brotherhood into direct negotiations, and says it holds the group responsible for what happens next as it attempts to clear two Cairo sit-ins of protesters demonstrating against the removal of former president Mohamed Morsi from power. PAGE 07
The ‘Fanta Rocks’ journey that started off looking for young gifted singers has reached a vital stage, as the winners of the campaign have now been announced. As part of the campaign, these winners will be given an opportunity to make an exclusive music video with Noori but the song is not all. PAGE 12
Yemen said Wednesday it had foiled an al Qaeda plot to storm a Western-run oil terminal and seize a provincial capital, as a terror alert kept US Middle East missions closed. The jihadist network’s feared Yemeni affiliate planned to assault the Canadian-run Mina al-Dhaba oil terminal on the Arabian Sea coast and take staff hostage, including Western expatriates, government spokesman Rajeh Badi told AFP. PAGE 04
Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) on Wednesday expressed reservations over the appointment of Justice (r) Bhagwandas as National Accountability Bureau (NAB) chairman. On the issue of the NAB chairman’s appointment, Dr Shireen Mazari said the PTI had the highest regard and admiration for Justice (r) Bhagwandas. PAGE 04
The ICC have launched a probe into allegations some batsmen in the Ashes series have used silicone tape on the edge of their bats to confuse Hotspot technology, Australia’s Channel Nine TV reported on Wednesday. The ICC were not immediately available for comment. The ongoing fivetest series between England and Australia has been riddled with controversy over the inconsistency of the DRS. PAGE 15
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Thursday, 8 August, 2013
PakisTan is blaMed even if a cracker goes off in india: nisar
ISLAMABAD STAFF REPORT
Interior Minister Chaudhry Nisar Ali Khan on Wednesday said India’s anger at Pakistan for the ambush of five of its soldiers was not understandable, adding that Indians were in a habit of blaming Pakistan even if a cracker went off in the country. Addressing a press conference, he said it was counterproductive to find the Pakistan Army at fault for the killing of five Indian soldiers in Poonch near the Line of Control. “The area is at least five kilometres away from the Line of Control,” he said, adding that it was “not possible for Pakistani soldiers to have been there.” At least five Indian soldiers were killed on Tuesday when they were allegedly ambushed by 20 armed militants, the Indian Defence Minister AK Antony said. The militants were allegedly wearing Pakistan Army uniforms. Pakistan has categorically rejected the accusations. The interior minister added that Pakistan wanted peace in the region, but a blame game played out in the Indian media spoilt the atmosphere. The killing of five Indian troops near the Line of Control has triggered a series of protests in India against Pakistan. India’s main opposition party Bharataya Janata Party (BJP) has demanded talks with Pakistan be called off.
indian protesters attack Pakistani Hc in new delhi PAKISTANI, INDIA DGMOs DISCUSS SITUATION ON LOC NEW DELHI AGENCIES
ROUND 200 members of the Youth Congress gathered near the Pakistan High Commission in Chanakyapuri in central Delhi on Wednesday to protest the killings of five Indian soldiers in Jammu and Kashmir. They climbed police barricades and raised anti-Pakistan slogans. Water cannons were used to disperse the protesters and 175 of them were detained. They were later let off. Protesters also demanded Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh cancel his proposed meeting with Pakistani Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif. INDIAN DEPUTY HC SUMMONED: In Islamabad, the Foreign Office summoned the Indian deputy high commissioner to register Pakistan’s protest over
the attack on the Pakistani High Commission in New Delhi. During his meeting at the Foreign Office, the Indian deputy high commissioner was told that the security of the Pakistan High Commission and Pakistan House was responsibility of the Indian government. The Foreign Office also stressed the need to ensure the security of Pakistani
diplomatic staff in India. HOTLINE ESTABLISHED: Meanwhile, a special hotline contact was established on Wednesday morning between the directors general Military Operations of Pakistan and Indian armies to discuss the situation arising due to recent Indian allegations of LoC ceasefire violation. The Pakistani DGMO strongly and
Anti-terrorism force to be formed to curb terrorism ISLAMABAD INP
The government is giving serious consideration to a proposal to set up an anti-terrorism commando force on the pattern of US Navy Seals to curb terrorism. According to reports, the new force would consist of 10,000 personnel who would be given advanced training and equipped with modern arms and technology. Sources said the idea was
shared with US Secretary of State John Kerry in the context of fighting terrorism to get modern arms and equipment from the US. The government is also reported to have sought assistance from Britain for the training of the force. Concerned military and civilian officials have begun spadework. Sources said the new force, being named as counterterrorism force will be structured on the lines of US Navy Seals that are nowadays being used in raids against the Taliban in
Afghanistan. Sources also said the idea of formation of the force got further boost after terrorists attacked the DI Khan jail. Officials supporting the force say that a rapid reaction commando force was need of the time in Pakistan to deal with such emergencies. They said that had there been an anti-terrorism force with tools to move quickly, it would have given a severe blow to the Taliban terrorists and foiled their attempt of jailbreak.
categorically rejected Indian allegation of LoC violation by Pakistani troops and killing of five Indian soldiers in Poonch Sector on the night between August 5th and 6th. The Pakistan Army also lodged a strong protest during special hotline contact for LoC violation by Indian troops in Pandu Sector on Wednesday, in which two Pakistani soldiers were seriously injured. It was reiterated by the DGMO that Pakistan army abided by the ceasefire agreement existing between the two countries. Pakistan said that its forces committed no violation of the said sector on the night between August 5 and 6 nor it had killed Indian troops. The Foreign Office has already rejected Indian allegations and has lodged strong protest against Indian troop’s violation of LoC. Defence observers said violation of LoC by Indian troops could undermine the efforts aimed at normalising the relations between Pakistan and India and could leave negative impact on the prospective meeting between the prime ministers of Pakistan and Indian on the sidelines of UN General Assembly session during the third week of September in New York.
Two killed, 15 injured in MasTung blasT ISLAMABAD APP
Two people were killed and 15 others wounded when a powerful blast occurred near a shopping center in a crowded market of Balochistan’s Mastung district on Wednesday. Several shops were also damaged in the explosion. According to details, the blast occurred near a shopping center in the Chandni Chowk area on the second last day of Ramadan while people were busy with Eid shopping. Rescue workers rushed to the site and shifted the injured to a nearby hospital. The bodies were transferred to the mortuary. Police said the bomb was remotely-detonated and had been planted in a box.
India says killing of soldiers unacceptable NEW DELHI SAYS GOVT WILL CONSIDER HOST OF FACTORS BEFORE DECIDING ON APPROPRIATE COURSE OF ACTION NEW DELHI INP
Indian External Affairs Minister Salman Khurshid has called the death of five soldiers at the Line of Control 'unacceptable' and 'extremely distressing', and said the government was in control of the situation but would carefully consider a host of factors before deciding on an appropriate course of action. "We are vigilant. We are
awake. We are conscious. We are watchful," Khurshid told CNN-IBN when asked to respond to criticism that the UPA government had fallen asleep at the foreign policy wheel. The killing of Indian five soldiers along the Line of Control in Poonch by a group of around 20 men created an outrage yesterday, and led to angry scenes in both houses of parliament. Senior BJP leader Yashwant Sinha had slammed the government in the Lok Sabha, saying it was high time the country responded back to Pakistan in the same manner, calling for a debate in parliament on the issue. Khurshid said that the rise in the number of incursions along the LoC had not gone unnoticed and reiterated that the government would act in the national interest. According to him, all the diplomatic processes that can be used in such a situation have been put in motion and Pakistan has been made aware of India's concerns.
The next step, he said, was to wait for Pakistan's response and then evaluate the situation at that time. "We have a categorical commitment from Pakistan that they will not allow their territory to be used for attacks on India," Khurshid said. "We expect them to deliver on this commitment." Refusing to be drawn into specifics because of the current session of parliament, the minister completely rejected the opposition's stand that AK Anthony's statement in parliament left Pakistan with an escape route. "He made what was in the circumstances the most prudent and careful and sensible statement based on facts that were available to him at that time," Khurshid said. If and when new information was gathered, the situation would then be reevaluated. He also criticised the BJP for politicising the event by saying the UPA govern-
ment was weak on national security, calling it irresponsible and saying "there are none so blind as those who will not see". As for what counts as the national interest, that would be a combination of perceptions, the government's analysis of the threats to national security and its strategic imperatives, Khurshid said. And whatever steps the government takes would be based on careful analysis and not a knee-jerk reaction. He pointed that just because Pakistan and India did not agree on certain issues did not mean that the two countries should treat each other as untouchables. "Neighbours have to find a way of talking to each other," he said. He reiterated that the government was taking the situation seriously though it would not be deciding on a course of action in one night. "We can't just shut our eyes to it," Khursheed said. "We can't proceed as if
nothing has happened. We have taken some steps. Let's see what the response to those are." Following Khurshid's comments, former Indian army chief General VP Malik told CNN-IBN during a panel discussion on the issue that it was unbelievable that Pakistan could have no knowledge of the attack because of the proximity of the two forces in that part of the Line of Control. "This ambush took place in an area where there are Pakistan and Indian troops facing each other at a distance of 200 or 250 yards," Malik said. He also warned that both armies tended to give as good as they got on the Line of Control, which could lead to a limited skirmish or a limited war (as happened in 1999), which is why the Indian government should be prepared for such a situation. "We need to make it clear we can retaliate," he said.
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Thursday, 8 August, 2013
Motorbike bomb kills 11 young footballers POLICE SAY SINDH MINISTER JAVED NAGORI WAS TARGET OF LYARI BLAST BUT HE ESCAPED WITH MINOR INJURIES KARACHI STAFF REPORT
T least eleven children were killed and Sindh MPA Javed Nagori was among several injured in a powerful blast that jolted Lyari late on Tuesday night. According to police sources, the blast took place during a football match in Lyari’s Sango Lane area. The explosive material was rigged to a motorbike, lying mangled at the blast site. According to bomb disposal squad, at least eight kilogrammes of explosives were used in the bomb. Talking to reporters, Sindh Minister for Katchi Abadis Javed Nagori said he was about to leave after the award distribution ceremony when the explosion took place. Nagori was the chief guest at the football match. Expressing grief for the children
killed in the blast, he said at least 11 children were killed and 24 others were injured by the blast. To a query regarding any threat, the minister said he had never had received any threat whatsoever. Sindh Minister for Information Sharjeel Inam Memon said the provincial government issued directives that every effort should be made to provide healthcare facilities to the injured. Memon also confirmed the number of casualties. According to Edhi sources, four bodies were shifted to Lyari General Hospital and three to Civil Hospital. Sindh Minister for Local Government Owais Muzaffar said all the explosions that occurred in the metropolis seemed to be a planned conspiracy. He said terrorists wanted to vitiate peace and to spread chaos in Karachi by carrying out attacks before Eidul Fitr. Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif also condemned the explosion and expressed grief over the loss of precious lives and injuries to the people. Governor Sindh Dr Ishratul Ebad Khan also condemned the blast and demanded a report from Inspector General of Sindh Police Shahid Nadeem Baloch. The Muttahida Qaumi Movement’s (MQM) Coordination Committee and party chief Altaf Hussain have condemned the attack. Hussain said the culprits involved in the attack were enemies of humanity.
Bomb kills Pakistan’s budding football talent KARACHI AGENCIES
Football mad Abdul Basit, 15, dreamt of becoming Pakistan's Lionel Messi but his ambitions died in a bomb attack that killed him and up to 11 others at a foura-side match in Karachi’s violencestricken Lyari area. It was the latest assault on sport in a country that has hosted no top-level international matches since militants attacked the Sri Lankan cricket team in Lahore in March 2009. Thousands of fans gathered to watch the final of one of many tournaments held during Ramadan in Lyari, the most dangerous neighbourhood of Pakistan's biggest city. Lyari has overcome a notorious reputation for gang violence that has killed hundreds of people over the past 15 years and miserable facilities to produce the country's best football players. The half-turf, half-road play area doesn't bother burgeoning talent in the area who play for pride and a few trophies: there is no prize money in this desperately poor slum. Their life-long dream is matching the likes of Maradona, Messi, Pele and Ronaldo, household names in an area historically ruled by the Pakistan People's Party of the Bhutto dynasty. The neck and neck match between Baba Ladla 99 and Baba Ladla 92, both named after a local gangster, finished 77 at around 2am on Wednesday, when many people are still awake in Ramadan. A penalty shootout handed BL 99 the game but minutes after the crowd erupted in joy, a deafening bomb exploded near the car of the chief guest, provincial minister Javed Nagori. Nagori survived, but Basit and five other young football fans were among the 11 whom match organisers said were killed. Life had never been easy for Basit. He was forced to leave school early and worked in a car mechanics, some 500 metres from the site of the attack that killed him. “It's sad to lose a die-hard fan like Basit,” said former Pakistan international, Aurangzeb Shahmir, who played in the 2003 Asia Cup and who attended the match with his young son.
“He lived in my area and was mad about Messi. He wanted to meet the Argentinian players once in his life, but that can never happen now,” Shahmir said. Fans Mohammad Khalil, 15, Jamshed Ahmed, 15, Mohammad Ibrahim, 22 and Shah Waliullah, 22 were also among the dead -- most of them wearing the yellow and blue kit of Brazil, the most popular team in Lyari. Shahmir feared the blast will badly affect the game and its fans, already reeling from daily violence in Karachi. “These blasts will hurt football and fans in Lyari for months to come,” he said. Once a hub for producing football and boxing talent, Lyari has suffered badly from gang warfare between drug mafia. Despite several police and military operations, criminals thrive in Lyari, where the mainstream political parties deny accusations that they have de facto armed wings fuelling the violence. The majority of the population come from Balochistan, the oil and gas-rich southwestern province that is one of the most deprived parts of Pakistan, suffering from sectarian and separatist unrest. Football has long given solace to Lyari inhabitants, but former FIFA referee Ahmed Jan says violence is hurting the game. “Football is dying,” said Jan. “It died, maybe, for the last time on Tuesday. If the government fails to maintain law and order soon then I'm afraid this most sports loving part of the city will not be there on the sporting map.” The Pakistan Football Federation (PFF) condemned the attack. “It’s tragic to note that eight football fans were killed in Lyari. Who knows whether there were potential players among them,” said Naveed Haider, marketing director at PFF. He expressed hope that the qualifiers for the Under-16 Asian Football Confederation, scheduled in Karachi in October, will not be affected. Iran, Pakistan, Sri Lanka and the United Arab Emirates will compete in the event. Naveed added eight of a 16-man squad touring China for next week's South Asian Youth Games are from Lyari.
KARACHI: Residents of Lyari gather around the site of a bombing which killed 11 young footballers late on Tuesday. IMRAN GILANI
RAw duped jihadis into killing Hafiz saeed’s security chief INTELLIGENCE OFFICIALS SAY TWO LOCAL JIHADI OPERATIVES WERE USED TO ASSASSINATE KHALID BASHIR IN MAY LAHORE ASHER JOHN
As India accuses Pakistani border forces of killing five soldiers at Poonch sector of the occupied valley, Pakistani security agencies have unearthed a network of India’s premier intelligence agency, the Research and Analysis Wing (RAW), in Lahore which was plotting to assassinate Hafiz Muhammad Saeed, founder of the banned jihadi outfits –Lashkar-eTayyaba and Jamaatud Daawa. The plot was revealed during investigations into the gruesome killing of Khalid Bashir, the chief security officer of Hafiz Saeed. New Delhi has long accused Saeed, the JuD chief, of fomenting terrorism in India. He is also a prime accused in the deadly gun-and-bomb attacks in Mumbai in 2008, resulting in a $10 million bounty on his head by the US government. However, senior Pakistani officials say that Saeed is helping in de-radicalisation and rehabilitation of former extremists and that official security is being provided to him because he could be targeted by militants who disapprove of Saeed's cooperation with the government. THE PLOT: Intelligence sources told Pakistan Today that the plot to assassinate Saeed and his close aides was hatched in Dubai allegedly by a RAW agent identified only by one name – Vinod. The sources said that RAW engaged two local jihadi activists through an unidentified Pakistani handler for the job. “On May 15, 2013, Khalid Bashir, a 42-year-old father of seven, was abducted from Lahore by Zafar Qayyum and Bilal Ahmed Cheema, both of whom were enlisted by RAW during their jihadi operations in Afghanistan. Bashir’s body was later found from the Upper Chenab Canal in Sheikhupura on May 17. The body
bore multiple torture marks and bullet wounds,” said the sources. Revealing details gleaned from the two men during interrogation, the sources said that Qayyum and Cheema were assigned the task by a Pakistani handler who told the men that “Bashir was an Indian agent and was working against the interests of JuD”. Bashir was associated with the JuD for over 25 years and was counted among Saeed’s close aides. His mysterious killing had shocked Saeed and other members of the banned militant outfit as he had thwarted several assassination attempts on his leader and was responsible for coordinating every movement of the JuD chief. Bashir’s family had told police that the deceased had received a phone call on the night of May 14, and the caller had invited him for a dinner meeting the next evening. When Bashir did not return home after that meeting, his family approached the JuD leadership. Meanwhile, an unidentified caller informed the family that Bashir had been kidnapped. An FIR No. 346/2013 was registered with Lahore’s Harbanspura Police Station under Section 365 of the Pakistan Penal Code (PPC) but later Section 302 of the PPC was added to the FIR when Bashir’s body was found from the canal. LARGER SCHEME OF THINGS: Taking note of the sensitivity of the case, an intelligence agency obtained the call data records of the deceased which showed that the call he had received came from a SIM card which allegedly belonged to the RAW handler. Two other numbers traced from the SIM card record led to the arrests of Qayyum and Cheema. Intelligence sources said that during the course of surveillance and call data records, Pakistani agents noted that Qayyum and Cheema were in frequent contact with each other, particularly after Bashir’s killing. It was also learnt that the two men were residents of Gujranwala and had been driven to Lahore for the job by their handler. During interrogation,
Qayyum and Cheema revealed that their handler, who used a fake name, had dropped them off near Lahore’s Jinnah Hospital on May 15, after setting a meeting point with Bashir. “According to the arrested assassins, their handler told Bashir he wanted him to meet two jihadis and brought him to Jinnah Hospital from where they boarded his car. The handler offered intoxicated juice to Bashir who fell unconscious after only a few sips. Qayyum then shot at him with a pistol and the men sped away to Sheikhpura with the injured man,” said the sources. According to the assassins, they did not know the identity of the deceased until they read news reports about his killing. Inspector Syed Imtiaz, in-charge investigation of Harbanspura Police, told Pakistan Today that the two suspected killers had been given in their custody for further investigation. “Qayyum and Cheema have been shifted to jail for identification,” he said, refusing to go into details. THE REAL TARGET: According to the intelligence sources, detailed investigation into this plot revealed that the Indian spy agency had spent Rs 5 to 6 million on Bashir’s killing, which they said was a test case for the ultimate trophy – Hafiz Saeed. They said that the RAW handler had disappeared from the scene after Bashir’s killing and it was believed that he had escaped to Dubai soon after culmination of the operation.
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news Thursday, 8 August, 2013
INDIA FACES PRESSURE TO SCRAP PEACE TALKS AFTER KASHMIR ATTACK NEW DELHI
NDIA'S government faced mounting pressure on Wednesday to put proposed peace talks with Pakistan back in deep freeze after a deadly crossborder attack on its troops in disputed Kashmir. The opposition accused the government of letting Pakistan off the hook over the killing of five soldiers in Kashmir, as the attack overnight on
Monday triggered an uproar in the parliament. Defence Minister AK Antony told parliament on Tuesday that "20 heavily armed terrorists along with persons dressed in Pakistani Army uniforms" had staged the ambush. India's army had initially blamed the attack on regular Pakistan troops but later withdrew the statement. "Our defence minister has given a clean chit to Pakistan," Sushma Swaraj, Lower House leader of the
opposition from Hindu nationalist Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), told parliament. The defence minister "has let the country down. He must apologise to the nation", she said as the uproar forced parliament's adjournment. Analysts said the killings had jeopardised efforts to arrange a meeting between India's Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and his new Pakistani counterpart Nawaz Sharif in New York in September on the side-
PTI expresses concerns over appointment of Bhagwandas as NAB chairman ISLAMABAD ONLINE
Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaaf (PTI) on Wednesday expressed reservations over the appointment of Justice (r) Bhagwandas as National Accountability
Bureau (NAB) chairman. On the issue of the NAB chairman's appointment, Dr Shireen Mazari said the PTI had the highest regard and admiration for Justice (r) Bhagwandas. "We recognize he is a gentleman with excellent
credentials and commitment and has done Pakistan proud. However, the PTI's position is that making individual-specific alterations in the laws/constitution is not acceptable as it under-
mines norms, rules and procedures for the future by setting a precedence that others may exploit politically.” Therefore, Dr Mazari concluded, to seek to alter prevailing norms in order to accommodate Justice (r) Bhagwandas as NAB chairman would be doing a great injustice to Justice (r) Bhagwandas himself, since he has always upheld norms, rules and procedures.
RAIN, STORM INJURE FIVE IN QUETTA
FLOODWATER INUNDATES 50 VILLAGES IN DG KHAN, 300 VILLAGES IN JAFFARABAD
DERA GHAZI KHAN INP
More than 50 villages in Dera Ghazi Khan (DG Khan) were submerged with floodwater on Wednesday after the water-level rose in the Indus River. The flood damaged hundreds of acres of standing crops in the Malkani Qalandar area but the local administration remained absent from the areas. On the other hand, flood in the Seem Canal near Jaffarabad has inundated more than 300 villages.
lines of the UN General Assembly. Senior BJP leader LK Advani told lawmakers "this is no time for talks" between the nuclear-armed rivals as news channels ran footage of the arrival of the soldiers' flag-draped coffins in New Delhi. With elections due by May 2014, analysts said the government cannot afford to look soft on Pakistan. The Congress-led government has been keen to engage with Pakistan, with Foreign Minister Salman Khurshid saying, "We don't
According to the Flood Forecasting Division, the Indus River has attained medium flood level at Chashma where the water inflow is 4,34,000 cusecs and the outflow is 4,15,000 cusecs. Water inflow at Head Taunsa was recorded at 3,97,000 cusecs whereas outflow remained 3,88,000 cusecs. There is a medium flood in the river at Kalabagh where inflow was 3,51,000
cusecs and the outflow 3,43,000 cusecs. At Tarbela, water inflow in the river was recorded at 2,80,000 cusecs and the outflow was 2,81000 cusecs. Meanwhile‚ the Flood Cell Peshawar said the Panjkora River had attained medium flood level at Dir. The Kabul River at Warsak and Nowshera, the Indus River at Khairabad and Khiali River at Charsadda Road are reported to be in low flood.
At least five people including three children sustained injuries as a severe storm and rain hit Quetta on Tuesday. Dozens of mud houses were destroyed in the rain while several trees and signboards were uprooted in the city. At least five people, including three kids, sustained injuries when roof of a house collapsed in Nawan Kali area.
want to create a situation that is detrimental and destructive for India's security and peace". But Khurshid added it was "too early" to say now whether the meeting between Singh and Sharif would take place. Former Indian foreign secretary Lalit Mansingh said "a high-level dialogue between two prime ministers right now is unlikely to yield any breakthrough". Mansingh said India's establishment remained "conflicted" over its Pakistan strategy.
"We have leaders at the highest level who are very anxious to embrace Sharif's government but our security establishment remains justifiably suspicious because of the facts on the ground," he said. Analyst Brahma Chellaney said the attack had "deepened India's security dilemma". "India would like to see a stronger civilian government in Pakistan but Sharif's government has taken no steps to assert control of crucial areas of foreign policy," he said.
Yemen says Qaeda plotted to take hostages at oil port SANAA AGENCIES
Yemen said Wednesday it had foiled an al Qaeda plot to storm a Western-run oil terminal and seize a provincial capital, as a terror alert kept US Middle East missions closed. The jihadist network's feared Yemeni affiliate planned to assault the Canadian-run Mina al-Dhaba oil terminal on the Arabian Sea coast and take staff hostage, including Western expatriates, government spokesman Rajeh Badi told AFP. A nearby export facility for oil derivatives was targeted too, Badi said. The terrorist organisation also plotted to seize the nearby Hadramawt provincial capital Al-Mukalla, a port city of some 100,000 people, and the Ghayl Bawazeer area to its north, where they briefly declared an Islamic emirate earlier this year, Badi said.“If they were to fail in seizing control of the facilities, the plan was to take foreign experts away as hostages,” he said. The attack was planned for Monday, which
coincided with the 27th day of the Muslim fasting month of Ramadan and was the second day of a mass closure of US missions across the Middle East and North Africa. The plot was foiled around two days before it was due to be launched, Badi said. Both Washington and London pulled diplomatic personnel out of Sanaa on Tuesday citing intelligence reports of an imminent attack by the Yemen-based al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP). The United States took the unusual step of closing some 25 diplomatic missions in the Muslim world on Sunday, and then extending the closure for a week at 19 of them, in response to what it said was a credible and imminent threat of a major al Qaeda attack. An intercepted conference call between al Qaeda leader Ayman al-Zawahiri and top operatives was the trigger for the closures, online journal The Daily Beast reported on Wednesday, citing US intelligence sources. It said more than 20 al Qaeda operatives from across
the globe were on the call, including representatives of Nigeria's Boko Haram, the Pakistani Taliban and al Qaeda in Iraq as well as AQAP. In the call, Zawahiri reportedly named AQAP chief Nasser al-Wuhayshi, as the operational controller of the group's affiliates throughout the Muslim world. “This was like a meeting of the Legion of Doom,” the Daily Beast quoted a US intelligence officer as saying. While the closures span cities across the Arab world, the focus of concern has been Yemen, where Washington has been fighting a drone war against AQAP militants for several years. Tribal sources said a US drone killed seven suspected jihadists in Shabwa province, to the west of Hadramawt, on Wednesday, the second such strike in as many days. The early-morning attack in the town of Nasab destroyed two vehicles, the sources said. It was the fifth US drone strike in Yemen since July 28. At least 24 suspected Al-Qaeda militants have been killed.
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Police sacrificing eid Holidays To ProTecT and serve
50,723 oﬃcials to be deployed in sensitive areas on Eid
Thursday, 8 August, 2013
LAHORE STAFF REPORT
0C 25 Low FrIdAy 32°C I 25°C
33°C I 25°C
33°C I 25°C
PRAyER TIMINGS Fajr
fIqAH-e-HAnfIA SEHR TOMORROW 3: 54 fIqAH-e-jAffRIA
SEHR TOMORROW 3: 44
Punjab’s Eid security plan was finalised in a high level meeting attended by all the CPO senior officers and was held under Punjab Police Inspector General (IG) Khan Baig’s Chairmanship at the CPO. They decided to cancel the leaves of all police officers and officials, adding that all training schools and colleges would remain open during Eid. Furthermore, they decided upon deploying 50,723 police officials at sensitive areas, markets, mosques, madaris and important government buildings. According to the plan, 246 gazette officers, 726 inspectors, 1,983 sub-inspectors, 3,179 ASIs, 2,102 head constables, 27,582 constables, 11,046 Police Qaumi Razakars and 3,859 Special Police Officials would remain on duty throughout the Eid festival. Moreover, they decided to install 103 walkthrough gates, 7,494 metal detectors and 337 CCTV surveillance cameras in various sensitive areas throughout the province. Baig stressed upon the officers remaining alert during the occasion and also advised them to keep constant contact with their subordinates to take timely action to deal with any untoward situation. Moreover, Baig expressed his hope that the public would extend its cooperation with the police and additionally remain watchful towards any mysterious activities in their surroundings.
E T it be known to all those who are planning to commit suicide owing to despair over their incapability to afford their living expenses that even ‘dying expenses’ are not so easy to meet. So, have mercy on your heirs. Pakistan Today has learnt that as many as 223 gravediggers at Miani Sahib Graveyard and 11 field security officers of the Auqaf Department leave no opportunity of fleecing citizens when they approach them for a burial. The process of buying graves appears to be no different than the process of buying houses in the open market. Just like houses, the graves are overpriced, encroached upon and misappropriated, especially in the absence of a ‘sale deed’ – probably the only feature that differentiates grave-buying from house-buying. There are more than half a million graves in the 1249-kanal graveyard which keeps on making room for more despite being full for ages. However, the custodians of the ‘land of the dead’ make sure that they earn a handsome profit for accommodating the dead. Sources told Pakistan Today that gravediggers are the front runners in this affair who overcharge citizens for a grave and then the money trickles upwards to Miani Sahib Graveyard Administrator Mohammad Idrees Shahzada and other Auqaf Department officials. For the registration of a noncemented grave, the gravediggers charge between Rs 5,000 and Rs 6,000 against the official rate of Rs 100. For the registration of a cemented grave, against an official fee of Rs 1,000, Rs 10,000 to Rs 15,000 is charged. The government demands Rs 100,000 for the construction of a dome over a grave, while the graveyard officials execute the task in not a penny less than Rs 150,000. As far as the labour for digging a grave is concerned, the gravediggers charge Rs 15,000 and Rs 30,000 for a non-cemented and cemented grave respectively against the government approved charges of Rs 1,500 and Rs 5,000 respectively. The fee for a cemented grave of the size 2x3x6 feet is Rs 20,000 while the ‘grim reapers’ at the graveyard charge Rs 50,000. Moreover, against the approved rates of Rs 20,000 to Rs 25,000 for the construction of various types of cemented and non-cemented shades over a grave, the gravediggers do not hesitate in charging between Rs 40,000 and Rs 75,000.
Moreover, Pakistan Today has also found out that gravediggers first tear down the graves themselves and then when the heirs of the deceased find out about the dilapidated conditions of the grave, the gravediggers put the blame on stray dogs which often wander the vicinity. Troubled at the sight of their beloved’s demolished grave, the guardians pay gravediggers hefty amounts for the repair. Against the government approved fee of Rs 3,000, gravediggers charge as much as Rs 10,000 for the repair. DCO IN ACTION: When the Lahore district coordination officer got to know about the situation at Miani Sahib Graveyard, he ordered an enquiry into the affair. On the DCO’s directions, policemen in the garb of civilians staged a drama to catch the gravediggers red-handed. They laid up a man in a coffin, reached the graveyard in an ambulance and demanded a burial. A gravedigger, at the sight of his potential client, came in action and initiated the dialogue with a lie. “There is no room for a single grave in the entire premises. However, I can take care of the matter for you if you can pay Rs 12,000.” The legal dramatists paid him the money and just when he was about to escort the men towards the grave which he had readied before hand, they lifted their cover and arrested the gravedigger. Soon after, the man was
Gravediggers, oﬃcials at Miani sahib overcharge citizens for graves Blame game continues between gravediggers and administrator on the issue Citizens pay double than the oﬃcial fee to avail facilities at graveyard
taken to the local police station and a case (FIR No. 297/384 - 420) was registered against him. GRAVEDIGGERS AND THEIR STORIES: Sources told Pakistan Today that the gravediggers had a number of stories for blinding the already mourning citizens who approach them for a grave. They make fake graves to show the absence of room for more, overstate grave charges and lament the unavailability of gravediggers and raw material for building a grave. The citizens, failing to cross check the gravediggers’ claims, are left at the mercy of gravediggers who then charge them according to their whims. A gravedigger, seeking anonymity, told Pakistan Today that they were forced to fleece citizens in a fear of losing their jobs. He claimed that Miani Sahib Graveyard Administrator Mohammad Idrees Shahzada demanded gravediggers pay him Rs 2,000 per grave if they wanted to keep their jobs. He said that Idrees, who had earlier served at the DCO office for 25 years, had been ‘reigning’ at the graveyard for eight years and was involved in several malpractices. “No one can take possession of a grave in the graveyard without Idrees’s permission, which usually is granted at the sound of coppers,” he added. Furthermore, he said that gravediggers operated in turns which have been assigned to them by Idrees. “Owing to the large number of gravediggers and especially Idrees’ favoritism, many of us have to wait for months before we are given an opportunity to deal a burial and earn a living. We have often tried to lodge a complaint against Idrees but in vain because he has connections with officials in the DCO office. He gets rid of the complaint letter before it reaches the DCO,” he said. GRAVEYARD ADMINISTRATOR AND HIS STORIES: Idrees, while talking to Pakistan Today, said that he always worked honestly and had issued warnings to the gravediggers several times for their malpractices. He said that he even fired 53 gravediggers involved in overcharging citizens for the burials. However, he said that the gravediggers had ‘political connections’ and were reinstated after being sacked. He said he also demolished 275 fake graves that the gravediggers had made to con citizens by saying that the graveyard was full. He blamed ‘some men’ from his own department for launching propaganda against him. He assured that investigations were in process and facts will soon be made public.
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LAHoRe Thursday, 8 August, 2013
are you travelling with dengue this eid? LAHORE
E A LT H experts on Wednesday said that travelling with fever during Eid would likely increase the number of dengue cases in Punjab. KEMU VC Professor Faisal Masood disclosed that more than 500 dengue cases had been reported in Karachi only and in order to control dengue fever it was necessary for people to refrain from travelling during the upcoming Eid holidays. He stressed for individuals suffering from fevers to avoid intercity travelling to curtail the spread of dengue. Furthermore, he instructed the public to use antimosquito sprays and mats in their houses and wear fully covered clothes while going outside their houses to prevent themselves from mosquito bites Meanwhile, Health Minister Khalil Tahir Sindhu directed the continuation of vector surveillance and larva-eciding activities during Eid holidays for which the Eid holidays of the dengue staff
were cancelled. He issued these directions while presiding over a cabinet committee meeting held to review Punjab’s dengue situation and to discuss the steps taken by various departments for dengue control. Health Special Secretary Babar Hayyat Tarrar, secretaries, additional secretaries of departments concerned, Dengue Experts Advisory Group (DEAG) Convener and other elected representatives also attended the meeting. Tarrar informed the meeting that only 20 confirmed dengue cases were reported throughout the province in the last six months. He said that due to the heavy rains, the chances of dengue mosquito breeding had increased and that during the vector surveillance dengue larvae was detected, therefore, the departments concerned had enhanced their vector and disease surveillance activities. Sindhu directed the personnel concerned to display banners pertaining preventive measures and travelling instructions at bus terminals for enhancing passenger awareness. He also stressed on the need for vigorous
900 gas connecTions seized LAHORE: A special team comprising of the Federal Investigation Agency (FIA) and district officials on Wednesday seized 900 illegal natural gas connections in Lahore’s Badami Bagh, media sources reported. Following the Punjab government’s order, the campaign against electricity and gas thieves also continued in the city under the supervision of district authorities and the FIA,. The estimated amount of gas theft was in millions of rupees which could be helpful in decreasing the losses incurred by the Federal government. Moreover, a FIA team cut the electricity connections of at least 161 flats in Islamabad’s G-6 during a raid where Police officials had been residing since the last four years. The accused had been using the energy resource without electricity reading meters. The investigation team also discovered a hostel in which 45 rooms and 2 shops were illegal using electricity connections in Islamabad’s Chatha Bakhtawar. The hostel owner was subsequently arrested by the FIA team. Furthermore, the FIA conducted a joint raid with officials from the Islamabad Electric Supply Company on a commercial warehouse in Ratta-sub division where electricity was being supplied from a home connection. Warehouse Owner Shaikh Shehzad was arrested by the raid team while other employees managed to flee from the site. ONLINE
additional awareness and publicity campaigns. Furthermore, he directed all District Coordination Officers (DCOs) to arrange dengue awareness campaigns through cable operators in their respective districts to tap the masses. Lahore’s DCO informed the meeting that special instructions for cleanliness and solid waste management had been issued during the Eid holidays and that all sanitary staff was already on duty. He revealed that the services of the civil defense staff had also been included in antidengue activities. The meeting was informed that spray and fogging machines in all the districts were now fully functional and that a sufficient stock of medicines and chemicals for spray and fogging was available and that the spray would be carried-out as per directions of the experts. Sindhu said that all departments were discharging their anti-dengue duties with full zeal and commitment, adding that these efforts and steps should be further intensified so that dengue could be controlled in this season.
Poisoned Tube-well oPeraTor dies LAHORE: A man given poison by unidentified men died late on Tuesday night. WASA Tube-well Operator and resident of Bagh Gull Begum, Atta Muhammad, 45, died due to poisoning. Reports said that he was performing his duty at a tube-well in Walton’s Sadi Park Graveyard last night when one Shah and other unidentified men poisoned him before escaping from the scene. The victim, in critical condition, was shifted to the nearest hospital by rescue 1122 officials after being informed of the incident by locals. The rescue source said that the lungs of the victim had been badly affected by the poison, and he was later shifted to another hospital but could not recover and died last night. According to an eyewitness, Shah and several unidentified men gave Atta the poison, adding that a few days ago the latter fought with another tube-well operator, Habib. Furthermore, he said that the WASA SDO officially inquired about the men involved in the scuffle due to negligence in their work. He said that Atta was the father of two children named Guriya, five, and Shahid Subani, four. The Walton Police shifted the body to the morgue for the postmortem and start searching for the criminals after filing an FIR at Walton police station. STAFF REPORT
brace yourself for a new Prison! LAHORE: Punjab Chief Minister Shahbaz Sharif ordered the construction of a new jail in Lahore due to the overcrowded existing jails. The new prison would be built in Manawan and would possess relatively more capacity than its existing counterparts. The construction of the prison is expected to begin soon. Jails in Punjab exceed their holding capacity, on average, by about 8,000 prisoners. Jails had been under question since an attack on the DI Khan jail and the consequent escape of high-profile criminals on July 29. Special arrangements to secure prisons are being made across the country. SHAHBAz FORMS COMMITTEE FOR FILM INDUSTRY’S REVIVAL: Punjab Chief Minister (CM) Shahbaz Sharif constituted a nine-member committee for the revival of the film industry. CM’s Advisor Azm-ul-Haq was chosen as the committee’s chairman while the Information and Culture Secretary was deputed as its secretary. Shoaib-bin-Aziz, Ata-ul-Haq Qasmi, MPA Kanwal Noman,the Finance Secretary, Usman Pirzada, Film Director Syed Noor and Samina Ahmed were other notable members of the committee. The committee would prepare its recommendations for the revival of the film industry within one month and submit them to Shahbaz. STAFF REPORT
–as unpredictable as the national cricket team LAHORE STAFF REPORT
Torrents of its-raining-cats-and-dogs cats followed by sun-humidity-and-more-sun remind the typical Lahori that the city is in the grip of typical monsoon climate. Early on Wednesday, Lahore received a heavy downpour that completely inundated city’s roads, streets and even the posh localities. The accumulation of rainwater in low lying localities has now become a routine phenomenon but the authorities still remain unable to devise a comprehensive solution to this sewage problem. Rather they turn to drafting ‘Monsoon rain relief camps’ on the city roads where a handful of WASA personnel complete their duty hours, doing nothing to facilitate the clearance of rainwater. Meanwhile, the MeT office forecasted the chance of rain-thundershowers during the next 24 hours in Lahore and its adjoining areas.
According to a MeT Office spokesperson, monsoon currents from the Arabian Sea were penetrating into the upper and central parts of the country, and may come towards the scattered places of Lahore and its suburbs within the next 24 hours. Metrologist Amjad Mahmood said that heavy falls were also expected in a few places of Kashmir, Hazara, Rawalpindi, Islamabad, Lahore, Gujranwala and Sargodha. MeT office reports revealed that the maximum rain received in Lahore was 09, while the minimum and maximum temperatures were recorded at 22C and 33C, respectively, with humidity at 89 percent in the morning and 66 percent in evening. Moreover, the Flood Forecast Division (FFD) said that all rivers were flowing at normal levels but the water level at River Ravi at Shahdara was decreasing with every passing hour, adding that floods were not immediately possible unless India released a huge amount of water.
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“The worst is not, so long as we can say, this is the worst.” — William Shakespeare
news Thursday, 8 August, 2013
egyptian govt could clear pro-Morsi sit-ins by sunday CAIRO
GYPT’S presidency has announced that it has ended its attempts to bring the Muslim Brotherhood into direct negotiations, and says it holds the group responsible for what happens next as it attempts to clear two Cairo sit-ins of protesters demonstrating against the removal of former president Mohamed Morsi from power. The announcement is the latest in a series of warnings from Egypt’s security apparatus, which has put Brotherhood backers on notice that their two encampments will soon be cleared. The decree is the most pointed threat made during a 10day period in which local and international mediators have tried to pull both sides back from the brink of another bloody clash on the streets of the capital. “The state has allowed for these efforts in line with its belief that it was necessary to allow for necessary efforts to urge the Muslim Brotherhood and its supporters to end violence and stem bloodshed and to cease causing turbulence in Egyptian society and holding hostage its future,” the statement said. “The Presidency understands the inability of these envoys to reach a resolution and therefore it holds the Muslim Brotherhood … responsible for the events and developments that follow from such failure, which could jeopardise public peace and the law.” Brotherhood officials dismissed the statement and called a meeting to decide
how to respond. Two earlier attempts had failed to clear the Raba’a al-Adawiya mosque and Cairo University sites that have become focal points for supporters of former president Mohammed Morsi, who was ousted by the military on 3 July. Ever since, pro-Morsi crowds have flocked to the two sites where they have twice clashed with security forces, resulting in an estimated 300
blasT wounds four israeli soldiers aT lebanese border
deaths. The vast majority of casualties have been among the demonstrators. Egypt’s new leaders have maintained an implacably hard line against senior members of the Brotherhood, whom they have branded “terrorists” who pose a grave threat to national security. In the wake of the coup, some leaders, including Morsi, were charged with serious criminal offences. Others had their assets
An explosion at the border with Lebanon wounded four Israeli soldiers on Wednesday, and the Lebanese Army said the troops were inside Lebanese territory when the blast occurred. The incident, in an area known for having land mines, did not appear to herald any surge in tension along a frontier that has been largely quiet since Israel and Lebanese Hezbollah guerrillas fought a war in 2006. An Israeli military spokesman said the soldiers were involved in “an activity near the border”. He did not provide details about their exact location or what caused the blast. Four soldiers were wounded and taken to hospital in Israel, the spokesman said. The Lebanese Army said that in a “violation of Lebanese sovereignty”, an Israeli infantry patrol crossed the UN-designated “blue line” between the two countries and moved 400 meters (yards) inside Lebanese territory. “During the infiltration, an explosion occurred which led to a number of (Israeli soldiers) being wounded,” the Lebanese military said, adding it was investigating the circumstances of the blast in coordination with UN peacekeepers in southern Lebanon. A Reuters reporter in Lebanon who visited the scene saw blood on an asphalt road. Commenting on the incident, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said Israel would “continue to act responsibly” to defend its borders. Andrea Teneti, a spokesman for the peacekeeping force, UNIFIL, described the situation along the frontier after the explosion as calm. In a statement, UNIFIL said it had opened an investigation and had asked the Israeli military to provide details “of any incident in the area as alleged” and its precise location.
frozen. Media outlets that projected the Brotherhood world view have mostly been closed down. Public statements and off the record briefings from officials suggest that attempts to clear the two sites are imminent. Security planning remains clouded by the start of the three day Islamic festival of Eid al-Fitr, marking the end of Ramadan, which starts tomorrow.
Japan says Fukushima leak worse than thought, govt joins clean-up TOKYO AGENCIES
Highly radioactive water from Japan’s crippled Fukushima nuclear plant is pouring out at a rate of 300 tonnes a day, officials said on Wednesday, as Prime Minister Shinzo Abe ordered the government to step in and help in the clean-up. The revelation amounted to an acknowledgement that plant operator Tokyo Electric Power Co (Tepco) has yet to come to grips with the scale of the catastrophe, 2 1/2 years after the plant was hit by a huge earthquake and tsunami. Tepco only recently admitted water had leaked at all. Calling water containment at the Fukushima Daiichi station an “urgent issue,” Abe ordered the government for the first time to get involved to help struggling Tepco handle the crisis. The leak from the plant 220 km (130 miles) northeast of Tokyo is enough to fill an Olympic swimming pool in a week. The water is spilling into the Pacific Ocean, but it was not immediately clear how much of a threat it poses. As early as January this year, Tepco found fish contaminated with high levels of radiation inside a port at the plant. Local fishermen and independent researchers had already suspected a leak of radioactive water, but Tepco denied the claims. Tetsu Nozaki, the chairman of the Fukushima fisheries federation said he had only heard of the latest estimates of the magnitude of the seepage from media reports. Environmental group Greenpeace said Tepco had “anx-
iously hid the leaks” and urged Japan to seek international expertise. “Greenpeace calls for the Japanese authorities to do all in their power to solve this situation, and that includes increased transparancy...and getting international expertise in to help find solutions,” Dr. Rianne Teule of Greenpeace International said in an emailed statement. In the weeks after the disaster, the government allowed Tepco to dump tens of thousands of tonnes of contaminated water into the Pacific in an emergency move. But the escalation of the crisis raises the risk of an even longer and more expensive clean-up, already forecast to take more than 40 years and cost $11 billion. The admission further dents the credibility of Tepco, criticised for its failure to prepare for the tsunami and earthquake, for a confused response to the disaster and for covering up shortcomings. “We think that the volume of water (leaking into the Pacific) is about 300 tonnes a day,” said Yushi Yoneyama, an official with the Minister of Economy, Trade and Industry, which oversees energy policy. Tatsuya Shinkawa, a director in METI’s Nuclear Accident Response Office, told reporters the government believed water had been leaking for two years, but Yoneyama told Reuters it was unclear how long the water had been leaking at the current rate. Shinkawa described the water as “highly” contaminated. The water is from the area between the crippled reactors and the ocean, where Tepco has sought to block the flow of contaminated water by chemically hardening the soil.
saudi offers russia deal To scale back assad suPPorT RIYADH: Saudi Arabia has offered Russia economic incentives including a major arms deal and a pledge not to challenge Russian gas sales if Moscow scales back support for Syrian President Bashar al-Assad, Middle East sources and Western diplomats said on Wednesday. The proposed deal between two of the leading power brokers in Syria’s devastating civil war was set out by Saudi intelligence chief Prince Bandar bin Sultan at a meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin in Moscow last week, they said. Russia has supported Assad with arms and diplomatic cover throughout the war and any change in Moscow’s stance would remove a major obstacle to action on Syria by the United Nations Security Council. Syrian opposition sources close to Saudi Arabia said Prince Bandar offered to buy up to $15 billion of Russian weapons as well as ensuring that Gulf gas would not threaten Russia’s position as a main gas supplier to Europe. In return, Saudi Arabia wanted Moscow to ease its strong support of Assad and agree not to block any future Security Council Resolution on Syria, they said. A Gulf source familiar with the matter confirmed that Prince Bandar offered to buy large quantities of arms from Russia, but that no cash amount was specified in the talks. One Lebanese politician close to Saudi Arabia said the meeting between Bandar and Putin lasted four hours. “The Saudis were elated about the outcome of the meeting,” said the source, without elaborating. Putin’s spokesman, Dmitry Peskov, could not immediately be reached on Wednesday for comment about the meeting. A Saudi Foreign Ministry official was also not immediately available to respond. Putin’s initial response to Bandar’s offer was inconclusive, diplomats say. CHeMICAL WeAPOnS: However, in a possible sign of greater flexibility by Moscow, other diplomats said that in the run-up to the meeting Russia put pressure on Assad to allow in a UN mission to investigate the suspected use of chemical weapons. The UN team is expected to visit Syria next week. “This was one of those unannounced meetings that could prove much more important than the public diplomatic efforts being made on Syria,” one diplomat said. A senior Syrian opposition figure said there had been a “build-up of Russian-Saudi contacts prior to the meeting”. “Bandar sought to allay two main Russian fears: that Islamist extremists will replace Assad, and that Syria would become a conduit for Gulf, mainly Qatari, gas at the expense of Russia,” he said. “Bandar offered to intensify energy, military and economic cooperation with Moscow.” Saudi Arabia and other Sunni Muslim powers have been strong supporters of the mainly Sunni rebels battling Assad, from Syria’s minority Alawite sect, an offshoot of Shi’ite Islam. The rebels have been joined by foreign Sunni jihadis. Assad has enjoyed military support from Iran and fighters from Hezbollah and Iraqi Shi’ites. Russia has maintained military sales to Syria throughout the two year conflict in which 100,000 people have been killed, and helped block three UN draft resolutions criticizing Assad’s crackdown on the mainly peaceful protests against him in 2011. AGENCIES
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news Thursday, 8 August, 2013
Paf must prepare for a two-front situation in war on terror: air chief C RAWALPINDI AGENCIES
HIEF of Air Staff Air Marshall Tahir Rafiq Butt says that the Pakistan Air Force (PAF) must prepare for a two-front situation in view of its combat role in the anti- terrorism campaign, which has evolved since the 9/11 attacks on the US, and in addition to its traditional adversarial role as India’s neighbour. “Airpower can achieve much more in a short span of time if employed with clear understanding of its capabilities,” he said in an interview to Defence Jane’s Weekly. “Its inherent flexibility has enabled nation states to successfully deter their conventional adversaries as well as prosecute irregular outfits.” The air chief said that while it always had to be prepared for the external threat, it now had to reconfigure itself to deal with an internal threat too. “We are now faced with a definite two-front scenario: external as well as internal.” While claiming that the PAF has proven itself to learn quickly on the job, Butt conceded that it did take them some time to get up to speed with the new challenge. “While we have always prepared for the traditional and ominous ex-
ternal threat, the new predicament did take us a while to get up to speed with, but …we did manage to learn on the job quickly and are very efficiently supporting our ground troops in all their operations against militants and terrorists.” PAF SEEkS TO ENHANCE JF-17 CAPABILITIES: The Pakistan Air Force (PAF) is seeking to enhance its latest multi-role fighter, trying to enable the JF-17 aircraft to refuel in mid-air, even though it remains open to procuring the more established and technologically advanced F-16 fighter jets. Chief of Air Staff Air Chief Marshal Tahir Rafiq Butt in an interview to Defence Jane’s Weekly said that the PAF was enhancing the JF-17 Thunder, jointly produced by Pakistan and China, and its flight time through the Ilyushin Il-78 air tankers, with the tests set to be completed by the end of the summer. “The ground tests have been very successful and I am satisfied. The air-to-air (refueling test) will be done successfully by end of this summer.” Pakistan had acquired refueling air tankers Ilyushin II-78 from Ukraine back in 2010. The tankers are now synchronising with medium-to-high tech multi-role aircraft in the PAF fleet, enhancing their capability to stay in the air
for longer periods. “The JF-17 program has been an excellent project to pursue, owing to the hard work put in by our engineers, technicians and test pilots,” the Air Chief said, adding “all this would also not have been possible without the cooperation of China.” The JF-17 Thunder programme was jointly pursued by Pakistan and China to give Pakistan a third generation mutli-role aircraft that will replace its ageing fleet of French-made Mirage aircrafts and supplement its powerful, yet limited US built F-16 fighters. The PAF hoped that with an attractive price tag, the JF-17’s capability of carrying a variety of weapons, it would in time ” become the PAF’s mainstay.” Butt said that the PAF plans to induct between 200 and 250 JF-17 aircraft in an airforce which has an estimated strength of 400 fighter aircrafts. POSSIBILITY FOR MORE F-16 BUYS: The PAF has come under pressure recently after traditional and conventional rival India stepped up efforts to upgrade its airforce last year with a major order for fighters made by Rafale. The most advanced aircraft in the PAF fleet which can match this is the Lockheed Martin made F-16. Most of the F-16 fleet that the PAF had till early
2000s were Block 32 A and B aircraft purchased in the 1980s. It wasn’t till the late 2000s that the US Congress eased restrictions for Pakistan to upgrade the older aircrafts and purchases for new Block 52 D and C aircraft. The Air Chief said that PAF has also been maintaining and operating a sizeable fleet of US F-16 aircraft for a considerable time and its air and ground crews were fairly experienced in handling the weapon system. “The PAF received its last batch of F16s in the recent past and even now there are US Congressional clearances available for the provision of additional F-16 aircraft. Owing to requirements, compulsions in the future, there exists a possibility of acquisition of additional F16 aircraft,”
WAH CAnTT: Commander-in-Chief of Russian Ground forces Col Gen Vladimir V Chirkin fires a gun during a visit to the Pakistan Ordnance factory on Wednesday. INP
he said. But with the F-16s touted by some experts as an antiquated weapons platform in light of fourth generation aircraft being developed in the US, Russia and China and recent purchases made by India, Butt said that options are still open on the purchase of high tech weapons systems. CHINESE AWACS: Answering a question regarding the induction of Chinesebuilt ZDK-03 airborne early warning and control (AWACs) aircraft, Butt said it has so far shown that the platform’s capabilities work well over sea, plains and mountainous terrain. Pakistan has four US built P-3C Orion AWACs aircraft. At least two of the aircrafts in Pakistan’s fleet were destroyed in the 2011 attack on the Mehran airbase in Karachi. The US agreed to replace the two destroyed aircraft.
lHc needs aag’s help in petition against governor LAHORE ONLINE
The Lahore High Court (LHC) summoned the Additional Attorney General (AAG) to assist it in a petition filed against the appointment of Chaudhry Sarwar as Punjab’s Governor. At the case’s hearing, the Petitioner’s Counsel Iqbal Jafri took a plea before the court that the Federal government had appointed Sarwar as Punjab’s Governor when he was not eligible for this post. He said that Sarwar claimed to have graduated from Faisalabad University but this university did not exist in Faisalabad. Appointing a less-educated person as governor in the presence of several educated options was a violation of fundamental rights, he added. He called for proceedings against Sarwar under constitutional articles 62 and 63 for concealing these facts from the nation. The AAG told the court that there was no legal educationalbar for any individual in connection with his induction as the governor. Article 63 of the constitution could not be applied to the governor, he added. The court remarked this as a sensitive matter; therefore, requiring the AAG’s assistance. The court adjourned the hearing of the case till September 9 and summoned the AAG for further arguments and to assist the court.
Us slams sanctions on Pak-based terrorist Bahawal Khan WASHINGTON ONLINE
The United States on Wednesday imposed sanctions on Pakistan-based terrorist leader Bahawal Khan for being involved in terrorist attacks in Afghanistan and Pakistan. Khan, designated by the US State Department as a “Global Terrorist” on February 26, is the leader of the Mullah Nazir Group that is based in the Waziristan tribal region of Pakistan. “All prop-
erty in the US jurisdiction in which Khan has any interest will be blocked and American nationals prohibited from engaging in any transactions with him,” said a State Department statement. Khan, also known as Salahuddin Ayubi, has led the group since January when a US drone strike killed Mullah Nazir in South Waziristan. Since 2006, the Mullah Nazir Group has been involved in running training camps, despatching suicide bombers, sheltering al Qaeda fighters and conduct-
ing cross-border operations in Afghanistan against the US and its allies. “The group is also responsible for assassinations and intimidation operations against civilians in both countries,” the State Department said. Khan has previously served as a subcommander of the Mullah Nazir Group in South Waziristan and fought with the Taliban since the late 1990s. According to the State Department, “Khan and the MNG have vowed to continue the group’s activities, including
supporting al Qaeda and conducting attacks in Afghanistan.” “While the group is responsible for numerous attacks against the international forces in Afghanistan, it has been known to attack targets in Pakistan too, the State Department said. The Mullah Nazir Group claimed responsibility for a March 2008 vehicleborne improvised explosive device attack in front of an army brigade headquarters at Zari Noor in South Waziristan that killed five Pakistani soldiers and injured 11 more. In May 2011, the group broke a ceasefire and attacked a Pakistan Army camp at Wana with missiles and rockets, it said. On February 26, the State Department designated the Mullah Nazir Group and its sub-commander Malang Wazir as global terrorists.
Police avert terror bid in bannu BANNU APP
The city police averted a terrorist attack on Wednesday by defusing three low-intensity explosives planted in different areas in the limits of Miryan Police Station. According to sources, the police received a tip off that unidentified men had planted explosives in a school, the ‘hujra’ (sitting room) of Sardar Yusuf Khan and on a roadside. The police and the Bomb Disposal Squad rushed to the sites and defused all three bombs. Explosion of the bombs would have brought massive loss to life and property. The police have started investigation.
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Thursday, 8 August, 2013
us recognises need to advance bilateral ties with Pakistan: sartaj ISLAMABAD
canada bans adoPTion of PakisTani cHildren C TORONTO
Adviser to the Prime Minister on Foreign Affairs Sartaj Aziz has said United States Secretary of State John Kerry's recent visit to Pakistan has reduced the trust deficit between Pakistan and the US. In an interview with VoA‚ Aziz said Washington also recognized the need to advance ties with Islamabad. Answering a question‚ he said Islamabad and Washington were working together to move the Afghan reconciliation process forward. He said both countries agreed that it should be an Afghan-led and Afghan-owned process and no one should try to orchestrate it from outside. “It is important that different Afghan groups‚ particularly the Afghan High Peace Council and the Taliban talk to each other in Doha‚ Dubai, Istanbul or somewhere else,” said Aziz. Responding to a question‚ the adviser said significant progress had also been made in improving relations with India after the present government came to power.
ANADA has stopped adoptions from Pakistan citing incompatibilities with the Islamic law over adoption and guardianship. A Greater Toronto Area resident Shafiq Rehman said he was “shocked and depressed” over the new policy to restrict adoptions from Pakistan, saying he and his wife, Rehmat Jahan were hoping to adopt a Pakistani child Shafiq and his wife started the adoption process in 2011. They received an approval letter in June 2013 from the Ontario Ministry of Children and Youth Services confirming them as suitable candidates. However, on July 2 Ottawa announced that it had to stop accepting adoptions from
Pakistan. The issue, according to Citizenship and Immigration Canada, is the Islamic practice of ‘kafala’ or guardianship which is common in most of the world’s 49 Muslim-majority countries like Pakistan. Many other countries such as Australia, the United Kingdom and the United States have raised no issue about ‘kafala’ and are still open to adoptions from Pakistan. Canada has, in some or all provinces, suspended adoptions from Cambodia, Georgia, Guatemala, Liberia, Nepal and Haiti for various reasons. However, Pakistan is the only country banned on the basis of ‘kafala’. Immigration spokesman Glenn Johnson said Canadian families seeking to adopt Pakistani children are required to obtain guardianship certificates from a Pakistani court and subsequently formalise an
adoption in Canadian courts. “However, legal and procedural requirements to obtain a guardianship certificate under Pakistan’s Guardians and Wards Act do not allow for subsequent adoption in the guardian’s country of residence,” Johnson said. “Pakistan applies the Islamic system of ‘kafala’ which neither terminates the birth parent-child relationship nor grants full parental rights to the guardian. This means that there are further legal incompatibilities in accepting Canadian applications for adoption,” he said. Michael Blugerman, one of the three licensed adoption agents in Ontario specialising in Pakistani adoptions, said the sudden move has caught prospective adoptive parents off guard, some of whom were already halfway through the long process. “All kinds of families are trapped along the
path,” he said. “The Immigration’s explanation is inaccurate and misleading,” said Blugerman, who has been an adoption agent for 33 years and handles about eight Pakistani cases a year. “Some of the parents have given up their jobs, or taken leave of absence to start the process abroad. It’s not the money but their emotional investment into the process,” he said. To qualify to adopt, a prospective parent must undergo a minimum 10-week home study during which the applicant is assessed by a Registered Adoption Practitioner for being a suitable candidate. The parent must complete a training course called PRIDE (Parental Resources for Information Development and Education) before the provincial children and youth services can issue an approval letter to a foreign adoption authority.
cj urged to take suo motu against ikf LAHORE ONLINE
A former Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) office-bearer has urged Chief Justice Iftikhar Chaudhry to take suo motu action against Imran Khan Foundation (IKF) and Namal University. In an interview, Saeedullah Niazi said that PTI has become source for unfair means of riches. All close relatives of PTI Chairman Imran Khan have taken funds for business. He also said that the land in which Namal University is situated is controversial. “I strongly urge Chief Justice Iftikhar Chaudhry to look into the matter of both organisations.” He added, “Imran Khan said that the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf will clean sweep the entire country with his mandate, but now he is not pleased with the outcome of the elections.” “Imran Khan is doing the same thing for what he used to criticise Nawaz Sharif. He must tell why he chairs the KP meetings and why he takes protocol?” He also stated that 250 Taliban came and almost same number of prisoners were released from DI Khan prison. To carry them almost 50 to 100 vehicles must have been used, it looks like it was done with the understanding of the KP government. He also said he would support PML-N candidate Shadikhel against Imran Khan in Mianwali.
MADInA: Prime Minister nawaz Sharif prays at Roza-e-Rasool (SAW) at Masjid-e-nabvi. INP
CIIs holds successful trilateral dialogue FORMER CHINESE AMBASSADOR SAYS US SHOULD NOT MAINTAIN MILITARY PRESENCE IN AFGHANISTAN IN FUTURE BEIJING ONLINE
The first ever trilateral dialogue between think tanks of China, Afghanistan and Pakistan was held in Beijing under the joint auspices of China Institute of International Studies (CIIS) and Pakistan-China Institute. This track II dialogue was attended by diplomats, strategist and researchers from China, Afghanistan and Pakistan, including the ambassadors of Pakistan and Afghanistan. The three neighbours sat together on one platform to jointly discuss the prospects of peace, security and stability in the region, in the context of the upcoming withdrawal of US forces from Afghanistan.
In his opening remarks, PakistanChina Institute Chairman Mushahid Hussain Sayed, who initiated the Trilateral Conference of think tanks, said time had come for Asian hands to shape Asia's destiny in the 21st Century, adding the decisions regarding the future of the region would no longer be crafted in Washington, London and Brussels but in the region itself. In any case, the balance of economic and political power was shifting from the west to the east, with the evident loss of clout of the west. He referred to the New Regionalism that was emerging and introduced the concept of a 'Greater South Asia' emerging beyond the sub-continent as an economic entity that now includes countries in the vicinity such as China, Myanmar, Afghanistan and Iran, whose cooperation is woven together through energy, economy, pipelines, road and rail links. Elaborating the socio-cultural aspects of China, Pakistan and Afghanistan he added that all three neighbors have stakes in peace and apart from geography, there is a history of shared heritage that brings them together. Senator Hussain welcomed the
proactive role of China on Afghanistan and said all neighbours of Afghanistan were committed to protecting the independence, unity and territorial integrity of Afghanistan. The leader of Afghanistan delegation, Sayed Hamed Gilani, appreciated the historic role of Pakistan during the 1980s of welcoming five million Afghan refugees on the soil of Pakistan. And he said that these bonds of brotherhood between Pakistan and Afghanistan had become permanent since the two neighbours were determined to forge a future together. He stressed that people of Afghanistan could never forget the open hearted help during the hour of need during Soviet-Afghan war. Former Ambassador of China to Pakistan, Zhou Gang, who was also member of the Policy Advisory Group, categorically stated that the US “should not maintain in Afghanistan its military presence and military bases in the future”. The veteran Chinese diplomat also expressed his concern regarding the future of Afghanistan and said “activities
of terrorism, extremism and separatism were being spread abroad to threaten the security and stability of Pakistan, Central Asian countries and the Xinjiang, Autonomous Region of China”. The head of Afghan Institute of Strategic Studies, Dr Davood Muradian, announced that the signing of Bilateral Strategic Agreement between the US and Afghanistan was almost complete, and this would provide a legal framework for continued deployment of 20,000 American troops in Afghanistan, adding that similar agreements were in the offing with the UK, Germany, Norway and other NATO countries. Ali Sarwar Naqvi, a former ambassador, said Pakistan and Afghanistan had shared culture, dreams of development and prosperity which could be achieved by developing mutual understanding and trust and working together in new era. Ahmed Bilal Mehboob, president PILDAT, said the people of Pakistan viewed China as the most trustworthy friend, while US had damaged its credibility after Abbotabad incident. Dong Manyuan, vice president of
China Institute of International Studies, said China would enhance bilateral multidimensional cooperation with Afghanistan as neighbours and a good friend. Regarding Pakistan, he said the international community must acknowledge the sacrifices rendered by the Pakistani people, adding China supported the strategy of Pakistan to combat terrorism. During the various sessions, issues of influence of India in Afghanistan, reconstruction work in Afghanistan, regional cooperation and investment opportunities in Afghanistan, China Pakistan Economic Corridor, withdrawal of NATO forces in 2014 and its impact on China, Pakistan and Afghanistan, capacity of Afghan Army, role of Taliban in Afghan peace process, also came under discussion. The closing session ended with positive remarks and tremendous appreciation for the intellectually stimulating input by the participating scholars, diplomats, researchers on various aspects of trilateral cooperation between Afghanistan, China and Pakistan.
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Love all, trust a few, do wrong to none. ―William Shakespeare
a Muslim malaise The spread of obscurantism, hatred and religious violence across the length and breadth of Islamic lands
CoMMenT Thursday, 8 August, 2013
foiling prospects of peace, yet again Killing of Indian soldiers on LoC
HENEVER an attempt is made to improve Pakistan-India relations something serious takes place to block the move. In 1999, it was the Kargil misadventure which nullified all the efforts that had been undertaken by the two countries to normalise relations. Again the composite dialogue was going on very well when the terrorists struck Mumbai thus derailing the peace process. Another attempt initiated by Asif Zardari and reciprocated by India in 2012 once again revived hopes of friendship between the two countries. There were several meetings between top bureaucrats culminating in parleys between foreign ministers of Pakistan and India. Pakistan raised the number of items that could be imported from 1,946 to almost 5,600. Businessmen from both sides played a vital role in promoting bonhomie and visa restrictions were going to be relaxed. Suddenly there was a series of clashes along the LoC with India claiming that one of its soldiers had been decapitated. While Pakistan army denied any hand in the matter, India put the talks on hold. With the PML-N in power, attempts were again afoot to break the deadlock. Weeks before being sworn in Nawaz expressed keen desire to develop friendly ties with India. The sentiment was reciprocated by Prime Minister Manmohan Singh. In early July, Nawaz Sharif’s special envoy Shaharyar Khan met Dr Singh to convey Islamabad’s sincere desire to move forward on improving relations with India. It was being hoped that the process of composite dialogue would be revived either by the end of August or early September. India had already agreed to a meeting between the two prime ministers on the sidelines of the United Nations General Assembly in New York in late September. It was hoped that this would be followed by Dr Manmohan Singh’s visit to Pakistan. But once again a border incident threatens to foil the painstaking efforts to put life into the peace process. Five Indian soldiers have reportedly been killed in an ambush on the Indian side of the LoC. The ambush, according to Indian defence minister AK Anthony, was carried out ‘by approximately 20 heavily armed terrorists along with persons dressed in Pakistan Army uniforms.’ The Pakistan government and army maintain that no Pakistani troops either crossed into India or carried out any unprovoked firing. There is a need on the part of the two countries not to become hostage to elements who are dead set against any improvement in their relations. Pakistan needs to conduct a thorough enquiry into the incident. What is more it must do its utmost to block any attempts by the militants to cross over into the Indian held Kashmir. New Delhi has to realize that forces like Al Qaeda and other militant groups would like to promote tension between India and Pakistan as this creates conditions suitable for them to continue their nefarious activities. No force should be allowed to scuttle the peace process.
Targeting Punjabi labourers A product of failure to start talks with Baloch nationalists
OW often do Baloch nationalists need to send out the message that Balochistan is burning? The response to the 'kill-and-dump' of Baloch personnel by the security agencies has been, albeit under false pretense, to target those with Punjabi identity cards. With nationalist groups sending a strong signal by attacking the Ziarat Regency earlier this summer, it has been the standby and watch policy of the new Dr Abdul Malikled Balochistan government that is becoming cause of frustration. While Dr Malik has been clearer than the federal government in stating "talks after Eid" with "all types of militants" operating in Balochistan shall be the priority of the provincial government, it is incidents like the one on Tuesday that give more ammunition to nationalist hawks wishing to paint Baloch nationalists as undertaking an ethnic cleansing in the province. In the Bolan district, around 70 kilometres southeast of Quetta, Baloch separatists appeared to have target killed around 14 people, including three security officers, after stopping vehicles at a fake checkpoint. The rest of those killed appeared to have been labourers from Punjab, who were apparently returning to their homes ahead of Eidul-Fitr. Instead of receiving their loved ones, their families shall now receive body bags. Such incidents continue to be used by the media and the government to spike up public opinion against the separatists, who often are fighting for what to them is a just cause. The militants had first stopped a Frontier Corps patrol vehicle and tied up five of their men. Then they stopped two Punjab-bound buses and took away 13 labourers. When security forces' personnel chased after them, the rebels fired off a rocket that killed one security officer. An operation led by the FC and Levies is said to be undergoing in the area. However, the response from the centre should not be more nationalistic fervour. It always does worse in a province which is already sufficiently restive to claim a separatist movement. Support for Baloch nationalists is based on what are perceived to be genuine grievances from the centre. The only way to go ahead, after eight-year militancy, is to talk to Baloch separatist groups and bring back those in exile. On a more basic level, such incidents can be avoided if the departing vehicles were provided a security escort in the first place. With the Balochistan government continuing to face criticism from the federal government, its own position to negotiate seems to rest on a knife’s edge. This means that its power to convince any separatist groups to drop arms is severely restricted since it cannot manoeuvre the behavior of either the federal government or the security apparatus. A growing number of people understand that there is a greater need to listen to Baloch separatists, but incidents like these can only increase their isolation.
ZubAIR MuRSHED ‘Out beyond ideas of wrongdoing and right-doing there is a field. i'll meet you there.’ –rumi ELIGIOUS obscurantism and intolerance is spreading quickly in Pakistan for various reasons. The followers of different denominations now preach regressive ideas of faith and many promote violence as a means to spread their brand of faith. The spread of religious bigotry threatens our way of life, for one can be a justified target for persecution by extremist groups for not wearing beard or veil, playing cricket, listening music, singing or dancing, not fasting, praying in a ‘wrong mosque’, having a different sounding name, wearing a different-coloured dress and so on and so forth. The spread of obscurantism amongst followers of various denominations, in recent times, though has emerged as a reaction to or an inspiration from one streak of faith – the Salafism or Wahabism. The Salafism prides itself upon ultra-conservatism, hate-speech and forceful action to prevent vice and spread virtue. In many cases now it calls for achievement of political power to spread faith. While we must worry about the spread of obscurantism amongst all denominations of faith in Pakistan, which are turning people into bigots, the one streak we worry the most is Salafism. The reason being: Salafism which has the financial backing, organizational infrastructure, social appeal and political patronage to take over our country, our society, like it has in many other Muslim countries. Over the past three decades, Salafism has spread across cities, villages and deserts of Muslim world from Mali to Malaysia, Tunis to Tajikistan, Algeria to Afghanistan, and Somalia to Senegal. It is no coincident that all major terrorist groups follow the Salafist philosophy be it Al Qaida, the Taliban (Afghanistan and Pakistan), the Al Shabab (Somalia), the Boko Haram (Nigeria), Ansar Al Dine (Mali), the Algerian Islamists, the Abu Sayaff (Philippines), and the Hizb-e-Tehrir (UK). The followers of Salafism may be small in numbers at present,but they are increasing in a persistent manner, slowly, but surely, like the cells of cancer spread in the body of a feeble patient. If one can point finger upon one source from where Salafism flows, it is Saudi Arabia where the malaise spread with state patronage initially, but lately by the private followers of Al Sheikh family – Al Sheikh the family of Mohamed Ibne-Abdel Wahab – the second most powerful family in Saudi Arabia after the Royal Sauds, the family which enjoys ab-
solute authority over religious matters in Saudi Arabia and beyond through the foreign service of that country. There are various reasons for the acceptance of Salafism amongst masses. First, the millions of migrant workers from Tunis, Egypt, Pakistan, India, Bangladesh, Philippines, Indonesia, Yemen and other countries have served as primary carriers of extremist ideology from Saudi Arabia since the 1970s, when the oil-rich Kingdom embarked upon large scale construction and it started employing masons, labourers, drivers, cooks, housemaids, sweepers, cleaners and security guards from poorer Muslim countries, to meet the demands of affluent Saudi society. Second, the billions of dollars funnelled by Saudi state and private charities to the appeasement of Al Sheikh family have contributed greatly to the mushrooming of a vast network of Salafi seminaries, mosques and universities across Islamic lands, which are busy spreading the message of hate by day and night amongst millions of masses. A variety of exogenous factors have also been crucial in the spread of Salafist philosophy amongst slum dwellers, middle class colonies and posh urban neighbourhoods. First, the psychological need of educated classes to find an intellectual framework that helps to cope with pressures of urban living, while letting them enjoy the benefits of city life. Salafism has fulfilled this need by its focus upon display-oriented ritualistic piety, which provides spiritual/social satisfaction to the performer, without burdening his mind with the contemplative Sufi path to spiritual satisfaction. The emphasis of Salafism upon direct association to God, without the mediatory role of saints, also appeals strongly to the individualistic urban mind. Secondly, a vast majority of masses in a country like Pakistan, Egypt or Afghanistan gets its value system and world view from cleric of the mosque or the preacher at seminary. The absence of any state control over the appointment of clerics has resulted in capturing of seminaries and mosques by individuals of poor theological qualification and weak worldly knowledge. Thus, the Salafists sponsored by the oil wealth have taken over mosques far and wide in an organized manner, not to mention the schools, colleges and universities that organizations of Salafist bent are running to convert generations to their belief. Thirdly, the Salafist project operates in a social context where large segments of population are illiterate or semi-literate, who thus remain extremely vulnerable to manipulations of maverick clerics who promise a wealthy life in this world and a reward of heavens in the next for conversion to the ‘righteous belief’. The corruption, the indifference and the incompetence of political class – a phenomenon widespread in the Muslim world – tops it all. When a politician pockets money, instead of building one more school, making a new road, or providing one more job, he actually pushes dozens of more children towards the philosophy of obscurantism for they will end up joining a seminary and receptive to a cleric who sells heaven. If Pakistan is to deal with the men-
Arif Nizami Editor
Aziz-ud-Din Ahmad Joint Editor Lahore – Ph: 042-36375963-5 Fax: 042-32535230 Karachi – Ph: 021-35381208-9 Fax: 021-35381208 Islamabad – Ph: 051-2287273 Fax: 051-2850505 Web: www.pakistantoday.com.pk Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
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khan versus the cj Dedicated to the legacy of the late Hameed Nizami
ace of religious obscurantism proliferated by Salafists, then the political class, the intelligentsia, the security agencies and the civil society organizations must act – and act with clarity and act now, before it is too late. We can’t afford to shut an extremely important source behind the spread of Salafism for economic reasons, which is the over 1.5 million migrant workers operating in Saudi Arabia, therefore the flow of Salafist ideas would continue. Our government must press upon the Saudi regime though to stop the financing of seminaries, mosques and universities, which is an equally important means for the Salafist project. The problem though is that with the Sharifs in power, there is little chance that they would find the voice to speak up to their patrons. They can probably plead, which they must. Our policy makers must be aware though that since the 9/11 the domestic policy of Saudi Arabia shifted, where it is taking actions to control religious obscurantism, however, it still continues to spread it abroad. The provision of good quality education, jobs and a better lifestyle is certainly a very important strategy – which is the so called developmental approach. At a political level though there is a need to redefine the purpose of an Islamic state. The constitutions of countries like Indonesia, Malaysia, Brunei and Morocco define the religious identity of state in terms of its role in implementing Islamic welfare system, unlike the constitutions of Pakistan, Saudi Arabia and Egypt, where the state has ascribed to itself the role of promoting piety and righteousness amongst masses. Thus, the state in Indonesia, Malaysia or Morocco is developmental and secular in its nature, while it is exclusionary and obscurantist in Pakistan, Saudi Arabia and in the Brotherhood drafted constitution of Egypt. The most important strategy, though which we often tend to forget is the need to organize a system for recruitment, remuneration, training and monitoring of clerics at mosques and seminaries. Unless a minimum qualification is established and a criterion is followed for appointment and maintenance of clerics and preachers, it will not be possible to stop the spread of obscurantism, hatred and religious violence across the length and breadth of Islamic lands. The governments also must implement training programmes to educate the clerics about their role in preaching positive religiosity, instead of spreading bigotry and hate. Not only the appointments and training, but the governments must also have a system to monitor the clerical sermons especially during Friday prayers. It was said that in the Egypt of Hosni Mubarak, the Friday sermons were preapproved by local authorities in line with officially prescribed guidelines. No wonder that one never heard of clerics prompting religious vigilantes for action against sinners, as one did during the Morsi regime.
The entire media has gone berserk in the Imran Khan vs Chaudhry Iftikhar saga now unfolding on all the channels with everybody taking sides as per their own view. What is worrying is the raising of the temperature by some senior anchor persons, and the examining of the minutiae with necessary amplification at every level. Somebody is spending very serious money in stirring the pot to create this new crisis. There is a new government in place, and it has not yet settled in and taken stock of the problems, and is just preparing to address the monumental issues that it faces. Meanwhile the sniping is taking place at all the attempts of the nascent government in all its efforts. The Imran/CJ spat threatens to explode into a war that could destabilise the entire political scenario. With the political have nots (newly defeated)
members now sitting outside the assemblies plotting and scheming - not content waiting for five years, and certainly not ready to face the long prison sentences that would be their due if the Suo Moto cases are taken to their logical conclusions. This war is but one of the defensive strategies being employed by the defendants, too numerous to list, and increasing with the new scams being unearthed daily. The CJ must beware that he is now the prime target for these rogues who are desperate in their resolve to remove him from the scene. They cannot afford to wait for his retirement, and want him out now. So, they are pitting him against Imran - a truly formidable foe who cannot loose. Now would be a good time for the CJ to realize that the war is not of his choice, but a beautifully laid trap. Being pitted against Imran Khan makes for a no-win situation. Let better sense prevail. Fakir S.ayazuddin
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I'm not upset that you lied to me, I'm upset that from now on I can't believe you. ―Friedrich Nietzsche
Thursday, 8 August, 2013
Presidential or parliamentary democracy? What can be the ideal system for Pakistan?
regional sitrep Iran is the place to go – whether the Saudis like it or not Looking around GHANI JAFAR
T is no secret that Saudi Arabia has over the past year or so been trying its best to prevent Pakistan from improving relations with Iran. Some have even viewed Riyadh’s threat to deport a large number of Pakistani workers from the Kingdom and reports of the possibility of its blocking remittances by these, mostly labourers, Pakistanis back home; in the same context of Saudi pressure tactics. There is no denying the reverence in which Hejaz is held by all Muslims of the world. But, that is just a part of the Kingdom in the Arabian Peninsula which goes by the name of Saudi Arabia. It would be rare, if such an example is to be found in history to begin with, that a country is named after the ruling dynasty which in this case is the house of the Arab tribe of Saud. At any rate, let us be clear that the sanctity of the Two Holy Shrines cannot in any way be ascribed to the house of Saud. Pakistan as a sovereign country must take decisions in the realm of foreign policy that best serve its national interests. We can under no circumstances permit any country in the world – be it the United States, India, Saudi Arabia, any other GCC member state – to come in the way of boosting our ties with any other country; more pertinently, China and Iran. As I had lamented in my previous article, any reference to Iran by the current government still remains conspicuous by its absence. One can only hope that the prime minister’s unofficial visit to Saudi Arabia would have no bearing on Pakistan-Iran relations, especially the Iran-Pakistan natural gas transmission pipeline. Again, the negotiations with New Delhi for us to import Qatari LNG from India must not affect progress on the Iran-Pakistan pipeline project which has aptly been called as that of peace. This writer has long advocated the
desirability of developing bilateral, trilateral or even multilateral infrastructural linkages by Pakistan. The logic is pretty simple. In the presence of such linkages, especially those of energy in this time and age, the countries tied together by them come to have mutual stakes in each other’s peace and stability. It was thus heartening to read the news from Beijing during our prime minister’s recent visit there that the two sides had agreed to extend the Iran-Pakistan pipeline project to energy deficient China as well. It would be best for India also to join in because the manner in which its energy needs are increasing with growth of the economy and population would sooner or later make New Delhi swallow the bitter bill of normalising relations with Pakistan. In this context of Pakistan-Iran relations as well, my sincere advice of the necessity of taking calibrated steps on the basis of reciprocity has fallen on deaf ears. Now, coming to Iran, one of our most important neighbours as it has always remained, the time is here and now for Islamabad to get its act together in preparation for complete U.S., NATO and ISAF troops from Afghanistan by the end of next year. The most important component of that post-2014 regional arrangement is that of Afghanistan’s six neighbouring States to be on the same page so as not to repeat the mistakes of the post-Soviet withdrawal era of the 1990s. One cannot help wonder why Pakistan, Iran and Afghanistan have abandoned the process of trilateral summit meetings. Even if Islamabad is not responsible for that, although one has the feeling that it is, we should proceed post haste to revive it. Mercifully, Iran has a more moderate president in office who brings with him the promise of that country’s improvement of relations with the United States as well. If anybody is listening in Islamabad’s detached aloofness, the unsolicited advice would be for our new prime minister to take a fresh new start with the new president of Iran. Ideally,
of course, Tehran ought to be the destination for Mian Sahib’s next official abroad. Alternatively, the Iranian president could be extended an invitation to pay an official visit to Pakistan. No matter how earnestly Mian Sahib may desire, for some inexplicable reason, that Prime Minister Manmohan Singh comes over or he be invited to New Delhi, that is not happening any time soon. Together the six neighbours of Afghanistan – Pakistan, Iran, Turkmenistan, Uzbekistan, Tajikistan and China – must work together, with Russian being on board, to ensure Afghanistan’s peace, security and stability in the post-2014 era. It is crucial in this context that Pakistan and Iran do not work at cross-purposes by Pakistan’s supporting the Pathan factions of the then Mujahedeen resistance fighters and Iran’s backing what was then called the Northern Alliance comprising other ethnic groups. There is no all-win situation possible for any one of Afghanistan’s six neighbouring countries. The problems posed by a destabilised Afghanistan are the same, for some less and for the others more. Those include religious extremism, terrorism, human trafficking and drug smuggling. We happen generally to have short memories. Perhaps a reminder will be in place that the Taliban had virtually eliminated the growth of poppy in Afghanistan. It has been thriving even since the Western occupation of Afghanistan as have been the rulers at Kabul, the warlords that support them and the Western troops as well who all have been filling their pockets with dollars through the illicit trade of drugs. It has been a strange war with terror that is a state of mind, not an entity that can be killed or captured. Countless human beings in Afghanistan and Pakistan have been killed and injured; material and infrastructural losses are also immeasurable. The only beneficiary has been the American war industry which sustains the country’s economy.
N order to avoid anarchy and chaos, a nation needs a constitutional framework to adhere to, so that its masses can live under a set of rules to follow, a government system to rule over them, rule of law to be practiced, good governance to be ensured and checked and balances and accountability to be observed. However, it all requires a specific model of government that is swift, dynamic and competitive in nature. According to me a pro-presidential democratic government along with local bodies should be practiced. As there are several issues in parliamentary form of government in the context of Pakistan; including the caste system, feudalism, weak political parties, threat of no confidence against the prime minister, horse trading (also possible in a Presidential system but a gift of a parliamentary system) and lesser accountability. This is coupled with the shambolic history of the implementation of a parliamentary system in Pakistan. ZOyA ASHRAF Ever since the first constitution was passed in 1956, two more constitutions have been added to the journals of history. Presently, we are ‘in theoretical perspective’ following the Constitution of 1973 with 20 amendments. But, there was a shift in the constitutions when General Ayub Khan abrogated the first ever constitutions of Pakistan in 1956 that voiced for Parliamentary system. Ayub after abrogating the constitution brought another constitution in 1962 that was somewhat entirely opposite to the parliamentary form of government, where President can have the ultimate power and authority over everything. Though Ayub did that for personal interest as he wanted to validate his rule and wanted to avoid any kind of rebellion against him. That’s why he introduced an apolitical system where everything will be done without any political party, local bodies were strengthened. For that purpose EBDO and PRODO were presented to keep all types of political activities out of the governmental matters. On the other hand a Parliamentary form of government that is the major element of 1973 constitution that makes Prime Minister the most power person and President as the least powerful person. Moreover people cannot elect their PM directly, who is elected by the members of the parliament after general elections. The Westminster Parliamentary system which is best for Great Britain because its developed, it doesn’t mean that the form of government which is best for one country will suitable for other country. Even in the entrenched democracy, the way Margaret Thatcher was changed mid way of her tenure by the ruling party is a case in point. In Pakistan, at least seven prime ministers took oath and none of them completed the tenure. Similarly from 1988 to 1999, the PPP and Muslim League were twice returned to power, but none could complete the tenure due to their intolerance towards each other, and were sent packing under 58-2(B) though it’s been omitted after 18th amendment but nothing fruitful came out. Moreover, a constant rift between PM and President has been observed if they are from different political parties. Though it talks about the pure democratic outlooks but lacks the aroma of real democracy in it. Parliamentary system also benefits the political parties and the families being part of political parties, giving the ultimate power in the hands of bureaucrats to decide everything for the masses. Eventually, leading towards a shaky government system if one considers the situation of Pakistan only. If one consider Ayub’s intention behind presidential system for Pakistan, then it was surely not at all suitable for Pakistan. As he introduced this system to benefit himself so that no political party or political activist can plot against him. But, keeping Ayub’s intention aside, if one pays a deeper insight on the elements of Presidential form of government specifically for Pakistan, then it’s more than suitable. This perception might not be acceptable by a the parliamentary democratic school of thought, because they would have the opinion that giving power in one hand might be equivalent to dictatorship and authoritarianism but this fact should also be kept in minds that person who will have the ultimate power shall be directly elected by the masses at large, however on realistic grounds, Pakistan needs a sole single authority that can unite this scattered and troublesome nation. And to attain that a presidential system is best suited for Pakistan as it prevents horse trading, plutocracy, corruption (to some extent), make institutions accountable and enhances the system of transparency and checks and balances that parliamentary system does not ensure. In addition, Presidential democracy is prevalent in United States of America as well that claims itself the most successful democracy in the world. The system of local government in Pakistan can be expanded in the shape of increasing the number of provinces, each headed by a governor and a locally-elected parliament. This way both responsibility and prosperity will be transferred to local voters, that ultimately will give birth to bottom-up approach in policy making where people will voice for their own rights, their needs, they will have their own representative within themselves who are more deep rooted than our parliamentarians. Moreover, a presidential system in case of Pakistan will also lead towards more smooth function of power as there will be no other authority to consult and exercise its power, confusions and ambiguities will not take place, as if one looks deep into the tenure of Ayub, he was the only one to take major decisions for the country, and most of the reform agendas he presented were fair enough as long as the welfare and progression of a state is concerned (keeping his other intentions aside). Secondly, a person once elected by a clear majority, the legitimacy of the president both moral and constitutional is not in dispute; and unless impeached he completes the tenure. Protagonists of this system believe that it serves as a bulwark against perpetual political upheavals, allows stable functioning of government and a peaceful change of political power. So, according to me parliamentary system, though it’s progressively working in many of the countries but in case of Pakistan it did not turn-up as fruitful as expected. At the end of the day, it is not about which system is better but which system is better for our country. The objective of adopting any system is to create a government that is able to protect its interests and strengths outwards while maintaining a robust internal political system that creates and breeds leadership and focuses on the future. According to me Parliamentary democracy with its multiple centers of power is not suited to Pakistan and the offices of the prime minister and the provincial chief ministers can be abolished in favor of a strong presidential democracy. This will strengthen accountability, reduce tensions, and ensure smooth policy execution. Where the country stands today, and regardless of the idealism of Westminster democracy, putting Pakistan on the right track is not possible for the politicians alone. Nor can the military pull it off by itself. A successful, stable and prosperous Pakistan depends on a civilized and reformed political system with defined rules of the game, backed by a strong military commitment in the background and a sensible pro-presidential form of government with the amalgamation of Local bodies and Devolution Plan is required that can unite the nation under one nationalist umbrella. Another parliamentary system can be tested after elections 2013 as it was the first time that any government has completed its 5 years term though coalition worked but yet again personal gains and interests should be kept aside and a new system should be welcomed for a change that might work for the development of Pakistan.
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Thursday, 8 August, 2013
dustin Hoffman beats cancer, says he’s never felt better
it’s easier to force feed people than it is to give ‘em what they want. it makes more money — Merle Haggard
brawlin’ beiber: singer being investigated for for scuffle
UCk may have been canceled, but fortune still shines on Dustin Hoffman. The two-time Oscar winner recently underwent successful treatment for cancer and has been “surgically cured” after doctors caught it early, his rep confirms to E! News. “Dustin is feeling great and is in good health,” she says, adding that Hoffman will continue to undergo preventative treatment to minimize the chance of the cancer recurring. The rep did not specify what type of the disease Hoffman was battling. Regardless, we’re happy to hear the good news, as first reported by People. The 75-year-old actor made his feature directorial debut last year with Quartet, and he recently wrapped the Jon Favreau-directed Chef, costarring Robert Downey Jr., Sofia Vergara and Scarlett Johansson. Next up for Hoffman, whose most recent role came on the small screen in the critically acclaimed but short-lived HBO series Luck, is Esio Trot with Dame Judi Dench and Boys Choir. EONLINE
where’s gauri now? deepika says she ‘smooches’ srk daily!
Owen Wilson on the set of ‘Squirrels to the nuts’
USTIN Bieber is under investigation by New York police following a club brawl in the early hours of Sunday morning. The Canadian singer’s night out at the South Pointe venue in The Hamptons ended in a fight, which led to the hospitalisation of a man. The altercation is said to have started in the roped-off VIP area - where Justin was seated with his entourage - but ended up in a bloody brawl in the club’s car park. Footage of the incident shows the teen star leaping out of a SUV’s sunroof as other men appear to be engaging in a physical confrontation. Although the 19-year-old is never seen making any physical contact with any other clubgoer but he does appear very agitated. Southampton Police sergeant Todd Spencer confirmed police were trying to determine whether or not Justin coaxed his bodyguards into an alleged attack on clubber Wayne Rennalls, 22. Sgt Spencer told the New York Post newspaper: ‘That would be part of the investigation, whether Bieber directed them or not.’ The argument was said to have started after Wayne clashed with Justin’s entourage over a bow tie. Wayne was said to have given his white
H&M accessory to a waitress at the club after she complimented it. However, when she visited Justin the VIP area to provide him with service, Wayne attempted to follow her to get his tie back. A source told The Post: ‘Justin was flashing all these girls with his flashlight. The girl with the bow tie went over to Justin and Wayne followed because he wanted his tie back. Then Bieber’s people got in his face . . . he eventually got the tie back. ‘We thought it was all over, but it escalated outside when we heard Bieber yelling and talking s**t. He was screaming in Wayne’s direction, “Punk b**ch!” Wayne thought somebody threw something at him. Wayne picked up a small rock and threw it back towards Justin. ‘Justin jumped out the sunroof of his car and slid down the car like he was in Die Hard... He dropped his shirt and threw his hat and wanted to throw hands. His people surrounded Wayne, who was getting punched from all angles.’ Wayne ended up in hospital with a black eye, a busted lip and bruised ribs, while another clubber was also knocked unconscious during the incident. Justin took to Twitter on Monday seemingly to dismiss the incident as a rumour. COuRTESy DM
Usher’s son hospitalised after pool accident
RAGEDY struck Usher’s family again Monday (August 5) when the singer’s son, Usher Raymond V, suffered an accident while swimming in the family’s pool. TMZ reports that Raymond V is currently in the ICU at an Atlanta hospital after getting his hand stuck in the pool drain Monday evening. Apparently, the 5-year-old dove into the pool to get a toy when he became unable to free his arm from the drain. Usher was not home at the time, but the boy’s aunt and the maid attempted to save him. Two men who worked in the house finally saved Raymond V and CPR was performed. According to TMZ, both parents are currently with the boy in the hospital and doctors say that Raymond V will be OK. Raymond V is the oldest of Usher’s children with ex-wife Tameka Raymond, and the second child to fall into harm’s way in the family. Last summer, Tameka’s son and Usher’s stepson Kile Glover died from injuries sustained from
Anil Kapoor wants part in Krrish-4 b A
T an event to promote their upcoming film Chennai Express, leggy lass Deepika said she kisses the Bollywood badhshah everyday! Now before you go reading too much into it, SRk is happily married and is fond of his leading lady, the beautiful Miss Padukone. Both Deepika and SRk’s chemistry has been evident, first in Om Shanti Om and now in Rohit Shetty’s Chennai Express. While they make a cute onscreen couple, what did Deepika really mean by this statement? She further added that she can only give him love and happiness. That we believe but a kiss daily? COuRTESy TOI
OLLYWOOD actor Anil Kapoor said he shared a special director-actor pairing with Rakesh Roshan as together they had delivered many hit films. “Like there was this hit jodi (pair) of Amitabh Bachchan and Manmohan Desai, Karan Johar-Shah Rukh Khan...the same way, I felt Guddu and me were also a jodi,” Kapoor said. “...But Hrithik came in the way and broke our jodi,” he said in a lighter vein. Kapoor and Roshan worked together in films like ‘Kala Bazaar’, ‘Kishen-Kanhaiya’, ‘Khel’ and others. Hence, when Roshan asked Kapoor to launch the ‘Krrish 3’ event and introduce the star cast, he immediately agreed. “I feel privileged and honored to launch or anchor or whatever you call it the trailer of ‘Krrish 3’. Guddu (as Rakesh Roshan is fondly called) has a 100 per cent track
record as a filmmaker. He is a great father and a husband, a fantastic friend...his friendship goes on for years and years no matter if anyone achieves
box office success or not and that is what I admire about him,” Kapoor told reporters. “I hope to be part of ‘Krrish 4’,” the
a Jet Ski accident involving family friend, Jeffrey Hubbard, who was arrested after the incident. Earlier Monday, Tameka Raymond tweeted: “I took a nice 2 week hiatus from my @KilesWorld work. Im ready 2 gear up 4 the next phase!! Im so excited abt my work in my baby Kiles honor,” referring to the arts foundation she launched in her son’s name. A representative for Usher hadn’t responded to MTV News’ request for comment by press time. COuRTESy MTV
actor added. Roshan thanked Anil for coming to the event at such a short notice. “This gesture of him will always remain in my heart. Hrithik says when he started his career, everybody who observed him said he performed like Anil Kapoor...that is because he worked closely with him while he assisted me on Kapoor’s films,” he said. “My model of acting was based on Anil Kapoor...he is a fantastic person and actor. He is so young today that I can’t even call him uncle,” Hrithik said. Kapoor introduced the film’s trailer and actors-Hrithik Roshan, Vivek Oberoi and Kangana Ranaut. “The poster of the film has already got 10 lakh hits and created a history. The trailer looks amazing, it is unbelievable, I am speechless...I don’t know what to say,” Kapoor said. ‘Krrish 3’, the third instalment will take forward the story of the superhero, played by Hrithik in ‘Koi Mil Gaya’ and “Krrish”. Starring Hrithik, Priyanka Chopra, Kangana Ranuat and Vivek Oberoi it is set for a November 4 release. COuRTESy TOI
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Being a writer is not the point. Writing is — Mohsin Hamid
ARTs Thursday, 8 August, 2013
young rock stars all set to rock the stage! LAHORE
HE ‘Fanta Rocks’ journey that started off looking for young gifted singers has reached a vital stage, as the winners of the campaign have now been announced. As part of the campaign, these winners will be given an opportunity to make an exclusive music video with Noori but the song is not all. The winners will now basically live the life of rock stars interacting with the band all the way at the exclusive Fanta Rock Station. Eight students from across major schools in Karachi, Islamabad and Lahore were originally short-listed based on their confidence, singing ability and stage presence. Finally two winners or Fanta Rocks Stars have been announced, namely Maria Fatima and ShaheerNaveed, both belonging to Islamabad. Both winners are highly appealing performers with unique voices and a high confidence level, to get on stage with Noori and perform in front of their school with complete control. The winners are genuinely thrilled at being given a chance to go through this lifechanging experience.
Speaking about Fanta Rocks, Rizwan U. Khan, General Manager, The Coca-Cola Export Corporation, Pakistan & Afghanistan stated “Fanta has a strong association with teenagers and this initiative is our way of giving young consumers an opportunity to participate in a playful & competitive activity while displaying their talent”. Apart from the jamming sessions and personal mentoring by the Ali Noor and Ali Hamza, the 2 winners are being treated to a lot of fun-filled activities. Games like dumb charades, rhyming & beat boxing sessions are some of the playful activities that Fanta has planned
for them. In addition to this, many outdoor activities are planned including a trip to Joyland, X park and farewell dinners. After producing the song Noori and the crew will be working on shooting a music video featuring the two Rock Stars as the lead performers. This music video is set to be launched post-Eid, which will be followed by concert performances by the team across schools. “The experience with Fanta & Noori was rather “Awesome!” I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again that this is truly one in a million chance!” stated Maria Fatima. “One word... Fantastic”, said an enthused ShaheerNaveed.
Get him to the girl! JONAH HILL SPOTTED WITH MYSTERY BRUNETTE
E was recently rumoured to have reconciled with ex-girlfriend after they were apparently spotted kissing while on a date in Starbucks. But Jonah Hill fuelled rumours he has now found a new love as he was spotted escorting a new mystery girl on a coffee date in Beverly Hills on Tuesday. The 29-year-old actor emerged from the Coffee Bean cafe happy and smiling alongside a girl dressed casually in a white top and navy blue jeans. The Oscar-nominated actor sported a blue checked shirt and baggy jeans and pulled up at the eatery in his black Porsche. The couple couldn’t stop smiling as
they took a stroll down the street before speeding away together. Just two months ago, Jonah was apparently spotted kissing ex-girlfriend Jordan Klein – who he dated for four years before they split two years ago – in the North Hollywood area of Los Angeles. A source told People at the time: ‘They were walking toward Starbucks. Then the next thing we knew, he grabbed the back of her head and started passionately kissing her on the side of the street. ‘As soon as they sat down [in Starbucks] they started kissing again. They were so into each other, it was like there was nobody else in the store, actually I think they forgot where they were, it went on for at least five minutes.’ The pair split back in 2011, with a source telling Life & Style magazine: ‘They decided to break up, although everyone thought these two would be heading toward marriage.’ COuRTESy DM
kathryn Hahn looks chic while filming.
Lollywood awakes! Waar ready to roll this fall
terror plot, drama, action and a wellknown and attractive cast — it is no surprise that with these key elements, Waar’s well-executed trailer generated excitement when it released two years ago. But that anticipation and fervor has died down, since the movie did not see a release and critics dismissed it as ‘just another project that won’t make it to the screen’. But there’s finally some good news — the film is tentatively scheduled to release late September or early October this
Diana and the doctor! Biopic’s launch imminent T HE most delicate moments in the film Diana are the intimate scenes between the late princess and heart surgeon Hasnat Khan. There’s something unnerving about seeing the mother of future King cavorting with her lover, even in a dramatic representation. Certainly, there is the potential for major embarrassment, but the love scenes between Diana and Hasnat, played by Naomi Watts and Naveen Andrews with Oscar-calibre performances, are done with exquisite taste. There are no crude sex shots; instead, the camera captures the couple rolling on to the floor wrapped in white bed sheets after making love. ‘That day when I first saw you was so powerful,’ she whispers in his ear. In another scene, director Oliver Hirschbiegel captures the pair sitting up in bed in the doctor’s cramped apartment. Hasnat enjoys a post-coital cigarette which prompts Diana to wonder aloud: ‘Why do smokers always smoke after sex?’ ‘It’s a great love story,
so of course there are love scenes, but none are gratuitous,’ insisted Robert Bernstein, who produced the film with Douglas Rae. Naomi told me the film-makers ‘bent over backwards’ not to cause offence, but they didn’t want to sanitise the affair. ‘They’re from different cultures — and she was prepared to marry him, and move to Pakistan with him. We had to explore all of that,’ she added. Naomi said she’s well aware of how fascinated people remain with the Princess; and about how quick they are to judge anything involving her name. ‘Some people have said to me: “Why would you do that? You’re not the right look! You don’t have the nose! You don’t have the walk, or talk; or the height.” ’ In fact, those are some of the many reasons why Naomi initially turned the role down. ‘It was nerve-racking going into it — and now I’m reaching the second nervous state,’ she told me, as Diana
approaches its world premiere in London on September 5. That will be followed by a huge release, through Entertainment One, on September 20 which will see Diana shown on 450 screens around the country. Naomi wondered how Diana coped with the level of scrutiny. ‘Who could survive that? And who wouldn’t want to try to control it as best they could? There were times that worked for her, and times when it backfired.’ Naomi said getting Diana’s voice right was the hardest thing. ‘Everyone remembered it so well, because she did sort of change that posh-sounding voice,’ she said. ‘It wasn’t the stiff upper lip we were used to,’ Naomi explained. ‘She made her voice sound more modern; more attractive.’ Then there was the ‘look’. ‘Those looks!’ she laughed. ‘Her fringe. The piercing eyes that told so many stories. There was the vulnerable, sad look and
the incredible strong look.’ This isn’t some secondrate film with a plastic Shy-Di lookalike dating a dopey doctor. It’s a serious movie that explores a romance in which the heroine was prepared to give up almost everything to be with the man she loved. Interestingly, it was Hasnat who saw it could never work — for religious and cultural reasons. Naomi’s latest film is worlds away from Diana. It’s called St Vincent de Van Nuys, and she plays a stripper. ‘I go from royals to poles,’ she said. NEWS DESK
year. Bilal Lashari’s first attempt at making a film Waar is themed around the idea of counter-terrorism, revolving around a team of police officers, who are looking to stop a terrorist attack in the country. Lashari feels that the film, which will be released under the banner of ARY Films/Mandviwalla Entertainment, is relevant to Pakistan’s current scenario. The film’s star-studded cast includes Shaan Shahid, Shamoon Abbasi, Ali Azmat, Ayesha Khan and Meesha Shafi. NEWS DESK
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INFOTAINMENT Thursday, 8 August, 2013
a woman's guess is much more accurate than a man's certainty — Rudyard Kipling
diMinisHing duMbbells? arMbands rePlace bulky weigHTs
8 english forces attack the Spanish Armada, permanently crippling Spain's "invincible" fleet. 8 President nixon announces his resignation as a result of the Watergate scandal. 8 napoleon Bonaparte sets sail for exile on St Helena 8 Iraq annexes Kuwait
braille Qurans color raMadan for THe visually iMPaired
Ramadan can be a physically as well as spiritually demanding time for Muslims -- even for people that aren't blind. However, their disability is not stopping the 30 blind Muslim residents of the Yogyakarta Disability Rehabilitation Centre in Indonesia, who come together to read the Quran using in Braille during the holy month. The Centre was started in 1982 by Colin McLennan, a New Zealander who was moved to help the disabled after seeing a shoe-shine boy with a leg missing from a traffic accident. NEWS DESK
busTed for brick’s burglary!
Despite a high-profile job as a tech executive in Silicon Valley, Thomas Langenbach risked it all to steal thousands of dollars worth of Legos from Target stores. Langenbach was convicted of burglary last Monday after pleading no contest in exchange for prosecutors dropping three other counts against him, according to CBS San Francisco. The Lego enthusiast, whose job as vice president at SAP Labs' Integration & Certification Center remains uncertain, was able to fool Target stores by sticking his own bar codes on toy boxes over existing ones. Langenbach's fake bar codes allowed him to get the products at a much cheaper price. In a 2012 report by Mercury News, investigators discovered a massive cache of Legos at Lagenbach's $2 million home, and eight Ziploc baggies containing dozens of bar code stickers in his car. At his home, investigators described seeing "many, many sets of Legos that he had built" along with bricks separated by color, type and size. Despite his sizable income and enough Legos to last a lifetime, Langenbach continued his scam and also took to the internet to sell off his stolen goods. Under the eBay handle "Tomsbrickyard," Langenbach made off with more than $30,000, a report from Wired said. NEWS DESK
EIGHT training conjures images of large sweaty men heaving even larger weights. But an armband-like device could change all that by letting you lift up to 24kg without the use of large equipment. The O2 Magnetic Dumbbell allows users to do a full and adjustable programme of weight training using the power of magnets.
The two rings, designed by South Korean students, are worn above and below the elbow. They are powered by embedded electromagnets that provide varying degrees of push and pull resistance. The dumbbells claim to provide the user with all the benefits of traditional dumbbells without the effort of changing equipment for each exercise. The strength of these electromagnets can be set by adjusting the level of electric power according to the work out intensity needed. The display indicates 8-circled bars which each represents an additional weight of 3kg. The users are then able to choose the right training weight ranging from between 3kg to 24kg. It even keeps track of your workout. Repetitions of each training-set are indicated on the display in the middle of the device so that you never lose count. Its small size and magnetism also means it is easily transportable. The dumbbell was designed by by Suhyun Yoo, Hongseok Kim and Juhyeon Lee of Kookmin University. COuRTESy DM
‘iMPossible’ MaTerial creaTed in swedisH lab
Sun’s pole reversal imminent The sun’s magnetic field is expected to flip in the next three to four months and it could lead to changes in our climate, storms and disruption to satellites. This solar event only happens once every 11 years and signals what physicists call the Solar Maximum - a time when the Sun's solar activity is at its highest. During this peak in activity the outbursts of solar energy can increase the amount of cosmic and UV rays coming towards Earth and this can interfere with radio communications, cause solar bursts of light known as flares - and can affect the planet's temperature. ‘It looks like we're no more than three to four months away from a complete field reversal,’ solar physicist Dr Todd Hoeksema of Stanford University told Nasa Science. ‘This change will have ripple effects throughout the solar system.’ The sun’s magnetic field reverses around every 11 years at the
peak of each solar cycle. The last peak, or Solar Maximum, was in 2000 and Nasa initially predicted the next flip would take place between 2011 and 2012. Physicists also warned at the time that the next Solar Maximum could be the strongest yet. Scientists at Stanford’s Wilcox Solar Observatory have been studying the sun’s magnetic field since 1976, during which time they have witnessed three reversals. In 1859 a solar storm known as the 1859 Solar Superstorm, or Carrington Event after Richard C Carrington who recorded the event, saw numerous solar flares appear all over Earth. It was so strong that the Northern Lights - a natural light display that appears predominantly in that Arctic and Antarctic regions and is caused by the collision of energetic charged particles in the magnetosphere and solar wind - were said to be have been visible as far south as Rome. NEWS DESK
owner of ‘drive-THru broTHel’ sues ciTy A woman accused of using her espresso stands in Everett, Wash., as drive-thru brothels is suing the city to recover $250,000 she says was wrongfully seized by police. Carmela Panico owns the Java Juggs and Twin Peaks "bikini baristas." She was arrested in June and accused of promoting prostitution, but she has not been charged. The cash was seized in a search of her home in Snohomish. The Daily Herald reports the lawsuit was filed after Panico was notified that the city planned to keep the cash as proceeds from criminal activity. Coffee shops in the Seattle area introduced bikini baristas several years ago, hiring attractive young women to serve up steamy espressos and lattes while wearing as little as a G-string and pasties. COuRTESy HP
It doesn’t look like much, but scientists from Sweden’s Uppsala University are calling a newly created form of magnesium carbonate an “impossible” material. Dubbed upsalite, the highly porous material sets new records for surface area and water absorption, according to a written statement issued by the university. It is expected to have all sorts of applications, from controlling moisture in processes used by the electronics and pharmaceutical industries to sopping up toxins in the aftermath of chemical and oil spills. “In contrast to what has been claimed for more than 100 years in the scientific literature, we have found that amorphous magnesium carbonate can be made in a very simple, low-temperature process," study co-author Johan Goméz de la Torre, a researcher in the university’s nanotechnology and functional materials division, said in the statement. The researchers succeeded in making upsalite in 2011 by bubbling carbon dioxide through an alcohol-containing suspension. But it took another year of analysis and fine-tuning to be sure that they had created the “impossible” material. Upsalite has the highest surface area ever measured for a so-called alkali earth metal carbonate, according to the statement. In addition, it’s filled with empty pores with diameters measuring less than 10 nanometers. “This, together with other unique properties of the discovered impossible material is expected to pave the way for new sustainable products in a number of industrial applications”, study co-author Maria Strømme, a professor of nanotechnology at the university, said in the statement. NEWS DESK
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S asHes silicone baT sPoRTs God made me fast. And when I run, I feel His pleasure. –Eric Liddell
Thursday, 8 August, 2013
HE International Cricket Council (ICC) have launched a probe into allegations some batsmen in the Ashes series have used silicone tape on the edge of their bats to confuse Hotspot technology, Australia’s Channel Nine TV reported on Wednesday. The ICC were not immediately available for comment. The ongoing five-test series between England and Australia has been riddled with controversy over the inconsistency of the Decision Review System (DRS), part of which is the Hotspot thermal imaging technology.
hotsPot undEr ProBE
Hotspot uses infra red cameras to determine whether the ball has struck the batsman, bat or pad, with any contact supposed to show up as a bright spot on the image. Hotspot’s Australian inventor, Warren Brennan, was reported in the British media to be preparing a statement on the technology for release on Wednesday. A Tweet posted on Tuesday from an unverified Twitter account under his name and entitled @HotSpotInventor read: “We will make a statement tomorrow about hotspot in regard to the remainder of the Ashes series.” Another, in reply to former England captain and media pundit Michael Vaughan posted on Aug 5 read: “Michael, its time you
investigate why players are using fibreglass tape on the edges of their bats.” Cricket Australia last week requested an explanation from the ICC over the dismissal of Usman Khawaja during the third test at Old Trafford. The batsman was given out caught despite a review of the television pictures and Hotspot which showed no convincing evidence of a nick off the bat. Later in the same match, England batsman Kevin Pietersen was also given out, caught behind, but again the Hotspot failed to pick anything up. England coach Andy Flower also called for improvements in the DRS system after the third test was drawn, ensuring the hosts, who won the first two test, would retain the Ashes.
icc denies players investigated over silicone on bats OLD TRAffORD: The International Cricket Council (ICC) has denied it is investigating players in the Ashes series over alleged attempts by some batsmen to use silicone tape on the edge of their bats to confuse Hotspot technology. It was reported on Wednesday that the ICC was investigating the use of silicone, amid increasing controversy during the five-test series between England and Australia over the inconsistency of the Decision Review System (DRS). “These media reports are totally incorrect,” ICC chief executive Dave Richardson said in a statement on its website (www.icc-cricket.com). “Geoff Allardice (ICC general manager cricket) is meeting with both teams and umpires to see how we can best use the
Treat all teams alike: basit asks Pcb LAHORe: Former batting consultant of the Pakistan Women Cricket team, Basit Ali has urged the caretaker chairman of the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB), Najam Sethi to encourage both men and women cricket teams in the same fashion. “If outstanding players from the men’s team could be given additional purse then why women couldn’t be treated the same way?” asked Basit Ali, while talking on a private television channel. Earlier in the day, the PCB announced cash awards to the Pakistan men’s and women’s teams that have recently won laurels in the West Indies and England respectively. The entire Pakistan ODI and T20 squad was awarded Rs 200,000/- apiece while four stand-out performers - Misbah-ul-Haq, Shahid Afridi, Zulfiqar Babar and Umar Akmal -were given additional rewards of Rs 400,000/- apiece. Also, the Pakistan women’s squad was awarded Rs 100,000/each for successful tours of England and Ireland, where the women team qualified for the upcoming World T20 Cup. “Bisma Maroof, Nain Abidi, Batool Faima and Sadia Yousuf performed exceptionally well in England and Ireland. They deserved a better purse from the PCB”, added Basit Ali The former Test batsman also dispelled rumours regarding any rift between him and the women team captain, Sana Mir. He added that team’s performance should be enough to negate the “baseless allegation”. “Sana Mir is a competent player & a very shrewd captain, we had a wonderful working relationship and those spreading baseless rumors probably don’t like our faces”, claims Basit Ali “Those having vested interests failed to digest the recent performance of the Pakistan women team”, said Basit Ali, who has recently stepped down as batting consultant. On a question, Basit Ali declined to comment any further, however added that he would soon submit a detailed report to the caretaker PCB chairman. STAFF REPORT
DRS and the available technology going forward in the next two test matches. It has nothing to do with any players.” The Channel Nine report had suggested Richardson was to investigate attempts to cheat the effectiveness of Hotspot, which uses infrared cameras to determine whether the ball has struck the batsman, bat or pad, with any contact supposed to show up as a bright spot on the image. Cricket Australia last week requested an explanation from the ICC over the dismissal of Usman khawaja during the third test at Old Trafford. The batsman was given out caught despite a review of the television pictures and Hotspot which showed no convincing evidence of a nick off the bat. AGENCIES
asHes Players angry abouT allegaTions OLD TRAffPRD: England and Australia players rejected claims Wednesday that bats may have been tampered with during the Ashes series to avoid detection by infrared cameras, while cricket chiefs sought to assure them about the quality of the technology. The International Cricket Council has sent a senior official to Durham ahead of the fourth test to address player concerns about the Decision Review System after several contentious calls during the Ashes. The ICC, though, has yet to respond to claims by Australian broadcaster Channel Nine that silicon tape might have been attached to the edges of bats “to fool” the DRS. The system uses Hot Spot’s thermal-imaging cameras to enable the third umpire to review on-field decisions at the request of either the onfield umpires or the teams on the field. Allegations that players have tried to dupe the DRS have enraged both teams. “My name brought up in hotspot crisis, suggesting I use silicon to prevent nicks showing! Such hurtful lies,” England batsman kevin Pietersen wrote on Twitter. In one of several contentious DRS decisions, Pietersen was given out caughtbehind during the third test even though Hot Spot indicated he had not hit the ball. “I am never afraid of getting out! If I nick it, I’ll walk,” Pietersen tweeted. “To suggest I cheat by covering my bat with silicon infuriates me. How stupid would I be to try & hide a nick when it could save me on an LBW appeal, like in 1st innings where hotspot showed I nicked it.” Australia captain Michael Clarke dismissed the allegations as “quite funny.” “I can tell you there is not one person in the Australian change-rooms who is a cheat,” Clarke was quoted as saying by Australian media. “That’s not the way we play cricket. I know no one is going to the extreme of saying ‘put this on your bat because it will help you beat Hot Spot’. “I didn’t know there was such a thing you could do to hide nicking the ball on Hot Spot. I wouldn’t think it would make any difference. I’ve never heard of anyone doing it.” England retained the Ashes after the third test was abandoned as a draw on Monday, leaving the hosts with a 2-0 lead with two tests remaining in the series. ICC director of operations Geoff Allardice is flying into England ahead of the fourth test starting Friday to speak to the teams and coaches about wider concerns about how DRS is implemented. AGENCIES
CAsH AwARds FoR Men, woMen CRICKeT TeAMs
LAHORE STAFF REPORT
The Pakistan Cricket Board has decided to give cash awards to the winning Pakistan men and women cricket teams. The current caretaker Chairman Najam Sethi wasted no time in announcing bonus cash awards for the national men’s and women’s cricket teams. The PCB, in a press release, said Wednesday that Sethi has approved cash awards to the Pakistan men’s and women’s teams that have recently won laurels in the West Indies and England, respectively. The men’s team emerged victorious in a bilateral One-day and Twenty20 series in the West Indies, while the
women’s team won the qualifying tournament of the ICC for the next World Cup in Ireland and England. “The performances of both our men’s and women’s teams merited a reward. The tenacity shown by the boys under Misbah-ul-Haq and Mohammad Hafeez in the West Indies was quite remarkable. The women’s team too has maintained an upwardly mobile trajectory and their achievement of finishing the ICC Qualifiers for the World T20 championship on top of the event is indeed commendable,” Sethi was quoted in the press release. “The PCB management is positive that the cash rewards and recognition shall inspire both teams to keep it up and notch greater accomplishments,” he added. The PCB has announced Rs
400,000 each for Misbah, Zulfiqar Babar, Umar Akmal and Shahid Afridi for their performances in West Indies and 200,000 each for every member of the team and 1,00,000 each for the team officials and support staff. It decided to award Pakistan women’s squad Rs 100,000 apiece, while the team officials to be given Rs. 50,000 each. Interestingly, since taking over Sethi has been talking repeatedly about the financial position of the board and has announced expenses to be curtailed and employees to be reduced in the board. The PCB had time and again said that it suffered financial setbacks as no Test playing nation has visited Pakistan for security reasons after the Sri Lankan team was attacked by Militants in Lahore in March, 2009.
raza to participate in disabled world golf in sweden LAHORe: The Disabled World Invitational Golf Championship will commence at the Bokskogen Golf Course from August 9. The Bokskogen Golf course is located 40 miles from Copenhagen, in Sweden. This is an invitational event and only 40 top golfers with physical disabilities have been invited to particapate. From Pakistan, Saleem Raza of Gujranwala, who has a broken pelvis and hip joint, is the sole invitee and the honor of getting invited stems from his outstanding performance in the recently held Disabled World Golf Championship in Uk in early July where he topped in the Championship. Raza feels very pleased with the invitation and on reaching Sweden. He stated over the phone that the Swedish Organisers had extended full hospitality status and his first practice round at the Bokskogen Golf Course was preparation oriented. “Indeed my practice sessions earlier at the Royal Palm Golf Course in Lahore have really helped to get quick grasp of the tough golf course here in Sweden”. He requested his well wishers in Pakistan to pray for his success during this World Event. As far as the participation is concerned it is interesting to highlight that there are many colorful champions participating in the World Disabled Invitational Golf Championship. To hit a 275 yard drive is one type of accomplishment, but doing it while standing on one leg or with one arm is another way of doing it. There are many such players in the world that give this sport of golf a new face. Johan kammerstad (SWE) and Manuel De Los Santos (FRA) are both former winners of the Swedish Invitational which is played for the 4th time. The competition is rock hard in the top of the world and the field includes the whole Swedish team that won the Team World Championship in 2011. STAFF REPORT
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One man practicing sportsmanship is far better than a hundred teaching it. –Knute Rockne
Make match-fixing a crime to deter culprits: dravid MUMBAI
IXING cricket matches must be made a criminal offence to strike fear into the hearts of potential offenders, according to former India skipper Rahul Dravid. A stylish batsman renowned for his impeccable integrity, Dravid has had the misfortune of captaining a Rajasthan Royals team embroiled in a major spotfixing scandal that tainted this year’s Indian Premier League (IPL) Twenty20 competition. Former test bowler Shanthakumaran Sreesanth and two of his Royals teammates were arrested by Delhi Police in May, the trio accused of taking money to concede a fixed number of runs in the sixth edition of the lucrative tournament. The players deny any wrongdoing and have been released on bail but the scandal has sparked nationwide outrage and prompted the law ministry to draft a new bill to deal with cheating in sport after admitting existing legislation was
bcci To accePT ‘foolProof’ drs neW DeLHI: India will accept the Decision Review System only when it becomes “foolproof,” the Board of Control for Cricket in India’s interim president said in an interview published Wednesday. India was part of the first-ever test series featuring the DRS in Sri Lanka five years ago but has opposed the system of referrals to the television umpire, maintaining that it’s not convinced about its accuracy. “We will accept DRS when technology is foolproof,” Jagmohan Dalmiya told The Indian Express newspaper. “There’s nothing in between.” Dalmiya said he was not sure when the system would become perfect. “Let them come up with a system which is 100 per cent correct. They couldn’t fix the DuckworthLewis problem in 15 years, what guarantee do we have about an error-free DRS? The DuckworthLewis method is beyond most of the players and administrators, let alone the common fans,” he said about the prevalent system of revising targets in case of rain interruptions during limited-overs games. “I’m still trying to figure out how a team total is increased on the basis of projection. The whole process is very complicated and confusing. And rather than solving the riddle, DRS creates more confusion in its present form,” said Dalmiya, a former chairman of the International Cricket Council. Dalmiya said India was not isolated on DRS at the ICC annual conference this year. “Before going to the ICC meeting I was a bit ‘iffy’ as I was told by some quarters that India would be completely isolated on the DRS issue. But after I was done with my presentation on that day, there was not a single voice of protest,” he added. The DRS has been under scrutiny with some contentious decisions during the past few seasons, including in the ongoing Ashes test series in England. AGENCIES
inadequate. Dravid, who has been named as a witness in the case against the cricketers, said merely educating players of the perils of match-fixing was not enough. “...(we have to) police it and have the right laws and ensure that people, when they indulge in these kind of activities,
are actually punished,” Dravid said in an interview published on the Cricinfo website (www.espncricinfo.com). “People must see that there are consequences to your actions. That will create fear for people,” said the 40-yearold Dravid, who quit test cricket last year
after scoring more than 13 000 runs in 164 matches. Dravid added that some lessons could be learned from the high-profile doping incidents that have blighted cycling. “The only people cyclists were scared of was not the testers, not the (cycling) authority... they were scared of the police. You read all the articles, the only guys they were scared of was the police and (the threat of) going to jail. “So the only way that people are going to get that fear is if they know the consequences to these actions and the law that will come into play. It has got to be a criminal offence.” Dravid went on to suggest that administrators should work more closely with police to restore cricket’s credibility. “So many fans and so many people care deeply about this game and it’s because of these fans and people we are who we are as cricketers. “Administrators are there because of the fans and the cricketers, to run this game. So I think that credibility of a game in the eyes of the public is extremely important,” Dravid said.
WarnE critical ovEr ‘smug’ Eng PlayErs SYDNEY AGENCIES
Australian bowling great Shane Warne has accused England’s players of being “smug” during the third Ashes test and speculated that they are being “arrogant” as a deliberate tactic. England retained the Ashes after rain forced a draw in the third test at Old Trafford on Monday, giving the hosts an unassailable 2-0 lead after three matches of the five-test series. Warne, Australia’s all-time leading wicket-taker, felt the England players’ conduct after the game was unedifying, and singled out wicketkeeper Matt Prior and spin bowler Graeme Swann for particular criticism. “A lot of us reporting and commentating on the game were really taken aback by the way the England players were interviewing and behaving in press conferences and after-match interviews,” he wrote in British newspaper the Daily Telegraph on Wednesday. “It has caught the attention of those who report on the game, especially mine. “Yes, England are a very good cricket team and it is their choice how
they convey messages to the press and act on and off the field, and also how they want to represent themselves individually and collectively as a team. “But to me there were a few moments at Old Trafford when I thought, ‘Hang on, who do you think you are?’ “I saw an interview with (Sky Sports reporter) Ian Ward after day two and he said it had been a tough couple of days
for England, which it had been, but Graeme Swann replied: ‘No, not really. We will just go out and bat now on this flat Old Trafford wicket’. “Matt Prior was also very smug in his comments, which leads me to think perhaps it is a conscious effort or direction from (England coach) Andy Flower to be arrogant and dismissive of the opposition.
Thursday, 8 August, 2013
MonTy Panesar under invesTigaTion
LOnDOn: Sussex has launched an investigation after England cricketer Monty Panesar was penalised by police for being drunk and disorderly following an incident in a nightclub. Panesar was given a fixed penalty notice - effectively a fine - after urinating in public, following his ejection from the Shooshh club in Brighton early Monday. A statement on the Sussex club website Wednesday said that “an incident took place involving Monty Panesar” and added: “the matter is under full investigation.” Panesar was included in England’s 14-man squad for the third Ashes test at Old Trafford which concluded on Monday, but did not play. The 31-year-old spinner, who has played 48 tests for England and taken 164 wickets, was left out of the group for the fourth Ashes test. England has won the series. AGE NC IE S
ProTeas cliMb uP T20 rankings jOHAnneSBuRG: South Africa has leapfrogged England into fifth position on the ICC T20 International Rankings table, after securing a 2-1 series victory over Sri Lanka in Hambantota on Tuesday. SA won the first two games of the series, before slumping to a six wicket defeat in the third and final game. Nevertheless, the Proteas are now just two ranking points behind last year’s ICC World Twenty20 champions, West Indies, after picking up six rankings points following the Sri Lanka series. Sri Lanka, meanwhile, retain their position as the number-one ranked side, despite dropping six ranking points. As a result, their lead over second-ranked Pakistan has been trimmed to just four ranking points. SA are also ranked fifth on the ICC One Day International (ODI) rankings table, but are still ranked number one on the Test Rankings table. T20 Rankings (as of August 7, following the conclusion of Sri Lanka/South Africa T20 series): Sri Lanka, Pakistan, India, West Indies, South Africa, England, Australia, New Zealand, Ireland, Bangladesh. AGENCIES
sL exPeRIenCe Key FoR FUTURe ToURs COLOMBO AGENCIES
The Blue Label Proteas feel their testing tour of Sri Lanka has been an invaluable experience, and will be beneficial for future tours on the sub-continent. Proteas allrounder, JP Duminy, achieved the most success in the conditions, and says familiarity and past experiences were extremely useful. “It’s quite similar to India, Dubai and Bangladesh,” Duminy said. “I have been to these places a few times over the years and had a fair bit of success as well. So it’s probably paying some dividends on this tour, I’m very pleased with the way my own game has gone.” Duminy was named as the man of the three-match T20
series, following two halfcenturies as well as three wickets with the ball. He also became South Africa’s leading run-scorer in T20 cricket during the series, and passed 1 000 T20I runs. The Sri Lankan spinners dominated the wickets table, and exposed some cracks in the armoury of some of the Proteas’ inexperienced batsmen. The top-order performed for the first time in Tuesday’s match, a needed confidence boost despite the loss. “Most of the sub-continental teams have world-class spinners,” Duminy remarked. “Being able to combat their attacks is about experience. As you play against them regularly you sort of get used to them and you find ways of getting on top of them.
“We have a great series coming up in Dubai against Pakistan’s world-class spinners like Afridi and Ajmal so it will be a good test for us, especially looking ahead to the World Cup in Bangladesh next year.” Duminy says the team takes a lot of pride from their maiden series win in Sri Lanka against their No 1 ranked opponents. “Winning in these conditions is not easy,” Duminy explained. “We have to take a lot of confidence out of this win, especially with the World Twenty20 being in these conditions. “Experience is the key; these players will get more opportunities against Pakistan and India later this year and hopefully they will have plans in place to combat their spinners,” he ended.
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Golf is a game in which you yell ‘fore,’ shoot six, and write down five. –Paul Harvey
sPoRTs Thursday, 8 August, 2013
Hockey team has potential to clinch asia cup: Pu vc LAHORe: Punjab University Vice Chancellor Prof Dr Mujahid kamran has said that Pakistan Hockey Team have potential to win Asia Cup if it worked hard and entered the field with commitment. He was addressing an Iftar dinner hosted in the honor of Hockey Team at Executive Club. Senior analyst Chaudhry Muhammad Akram, M Arshad Farid khan Commanding Officer AFIN Armed Forces Institute of Nutrition, Chief Coach Akhter Rasool, Coach Tahir Zaman, Captain Muhammad Imran and national hockey players were present on the occasion. Chaudhry Akram expressed the hope that the Hockey Team would measure up the expectations of the nation. He said that the team was expected to show outstanding performance during the matches. Mr Arshad also delivered a special lecture on health, fitness and diet on the occasion. STAFF REPORT
azadi cup rugby on 14th LAHORe: The Azadi Cup Rugby will be held on August 14 under the auspices of the Punjab Rugby Association. The tournament is a regular feature of the association which is organised to celebrate the independence day of Pakistan. The event which is now in its fourth year wil be held at the DHA L block Stadium. Entrance is free for all who wish to enjoy a day of exciting rugby played in a festive family atmosphere on the ground. The tournament will be played in the afternoon with a DJ and live commentary. The event is to be held in two parts with the “Azadi Shield” in which a 7-a-side format with 12 teams take part. The teams will include DHA rugby club , Lahore Rams, AIT rugby club, Multan, Lodran, Islamabad Jinns, Punjab RFU, Surgoda, Wadat Rugby Club and for the first time a new club Shadrah Rugby Club will also taking part. This year a special prizes will be for the man of the tournament and will be given the Rose Petal Rugby 7s prize and the man of the Match in the “Servis Tyres Azadi Cup will be given the Berger Paints man of the match award. The Azadi shield will be followed by the main fixture: a full 15-a-side match between two super league teams the Lahore Rams and the Islamabad Jinns to decide this years champions. STAFF REPORT
east zone trials pushed forward to 12th LAHORe: The six teams of East Zone Cricket Association players trial matches for Senior Inter District Cricket Event have been cancelled due to unfit outfield of the Stag Cricket Ground and the trials will now be held on August 12 (Monday) at the same venue. The trails will start at 9:00 AM and Dr Mohammad Jamil, Najam Mirza, and Sarfraz Ahmed will be the selectors. All the six teams players have asked to reach the ground in time. STAFF REPORT
venus ousted in first round at Toronto TORONTO AGENCIES
IMBLEDON semifinalist Kirsten Flipkens shook off a slow start to beat Venus Williams 0-6, 6-4, 6-2 on Tuesday at the Rogers Cup, spoiling the seventime Grand Slam champion’s return from injury. Williams, sidelined by a lower back injury since her first-round French Open exit in May, was quick out of the blocks, pocketing the first set in half an hour. Flipkens leveled the match with a break in the 10th game of the second frame, and once the 13th-seeded Belgian had forced the third set it was Williams who couldn’t keep pace. Flipkens, who has been nursing a right knee injury and hadn’t played since falling in the Wimbledon semifinals to eventual champion Marion Bartoli of France, raced to a 50 lead in the third before Williams managed to hold serve.
big guns begin preparations for us open
ToP seeds Progress To suzHou second round
MOnTReAL: The summer holidays are well and truly over and it is back to the serious business of preparing for the US Open for the world’s top tennis players. This week’s tournaments in Montreal and Toronto see the likely contenders in New York go head-to-head for the first time since Wimbledon, although the women’s event is weakened by the absence through injury of Victoria Azarenka and Maria Sharapova. That leaves Serena Williams as an even bigger favourite than she would have been otherwise, while Marion Bartoli is back in action a month after her stunning Wimbledon triumph. AGENCIES
Flipkens then surrendered a break, but broke Williams to seal the win and book a second-round match in Toronto with Dutch qualifier Kiki Bertens. Williams said the ease with which she won the first set may actually have hurt her. “I wasn’t expecting to play that well in the first set, so I think in the second I just didn’t handle it well,” Williams said. “Then I got down in the third... I didn’t make the best choices out there all the time.” Williams said she had only
started practicing her serve more in the last week, and she expects it to improve before the US Open begins later this month. “Definitely today my service games I didn’t feel like myself, because usually I step up to the line, I go for it a lot. I didn’t really feel like I could do that today,” said Williams, who also praised Flipkens for hanging in. “She definitely showed a lot of resilience by fighting back,” Williams said. “It’s never easy to lose a 6-0 set and come back.”
SuzHOu: Top two seeds Timea Babos and Misaki Doi both progressed safely through to the second round of the Caoxijiu Suzhou Ladies Open in China. Hungarian Babos defeated home player Lin Zhu 6-4 6-4 while Japan’s Doi beat Yafan Wang, also of China, 6-0 6-2. Chinese fifth seed YingYing Duan did not progress, however, after she was forced to retire from her match against Eri Hozumi of Japan, having lost the first set 6-2. Elsewhere, Dutchwoman Michaella krajicek sister of 1996 Wimbledon champion Richard moved through to the second round after a straight-sets win over Japan’s Erika Sema, while eighth-seed Alize Lim of France saw off the challenge of Chinese player Saisai Zheng. AGENCIES
VAn AVeRMAeT TAKes oPenInG sTAGe UTAH AGENCIES
Greg Van Avermaet of Belgium broke away in the final threelap sprint to outpace Australian Michael and win the opening stage of the Tour of Utah on Tuesday. With crowds cheering along the final stretch, BMC’s Van Avermaet beat Matthews to the finish line over the final half mile on Main Street and earned the Stage 1 victory in 4 hours,
11 minutes. American Tyler Magner who rides for a team owned by retired pro cyclist George Hincapie - finished third. Once the peloton caught up to breakaway leaders Michael Torckler of New Zealand and American Chris Jones, Van Avermaet knew the challenge would be there after seeing the finish for the first time a day earlier. “I saw the finish yesterday, and it wasn’t great because it was downhill,” Van Avermaet
said. “I had to try something different. ... The last (mile) was hard.” Once he hit the final corner with only the finish line in front of him, Van Avermaet could smile. “Once I came through the last corner with a gap, I was pedaling fast to the finish and hoped that no one came over. I couldn’t put my hands up directly because I didn’t know for sure. I was expecting somebody, but it was good.” With sprinting as his
specialty, Matthews was disappointed to come up short of the yellow leader’s jersey. “It’s hard when you’re so focused on the first stage and it slips away,” Matthews said. “That’s racing. You can’t win every race and you have to put faith in your team. “My sprint was good at the finish. It wasn’t quite timed properly. Greg was just too strong.” The second of the Tour’s six stages will run from Panguitch to Torrey on Tuesday.
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Skiing combines outdoor fun with knocking down trees with your face. –Dave Barry
Thursday, 8 August, 2013
Mo Farah, from Mogadishu to ‘Mobot’ mania MOSCOW
S he surged home in last year’s Olympic 10 000 metres final, Mo Farah completed an improbable journey that had taken him from war-torn Mogadishu to the summit of international athletics. Farah’s triumph beneath a hail of popping flashbulbs at London’s Olympic Stadium took Britain’s tally of gold medals to six in just one day, and the man who capped ‘Super Saturday’, as it quickly became known, was left dazed by the deafening roars of the home crowd. “It’s never going to get any better than this,” he beamed. “This is the best moment of my life.” Seven days later he won the 5 000m to complete a rare long-distance double and his ‘Mobot’ victory pose – in which he arches his hands onto his head to create an ‘M’ shape – became almost as widely imitated as sprint king Usain Bolt’s ‘Lightning Bolt’. A humble and affable competitor, Mohamed Farah was born in the Somali capital Mogadishu and spent his early years living amid the turmoil of Somalia’s civil war and neighbouring Djibouti before being brought to London by his father at the age of eight. The tall, long-limbed boy spoke barely a word of English but his talent for running was spotted by physical
wAtCh It LIve ESPN NEW YORK YANKEES VS. CHICAGO WHITE SOX
TEN SPORTS ATP MASTERS: ROGERS CUP SECOND ROUND
war command, ambiance set to clash in Phoenix
education teacher Alan Watkinson, who took him under his wing at Feltham Community College in Feltham, west London. “I took him to a schools crosscountry championship. He literally didn’t know what was going on and ran in the wrong direction,” Watkinson told The Independent newspaper in 2010. “He had to follow the other kids around and he still managed to finish second. A few weeks later we went to a county championship and he came fourth despite having no spikes. “He had something special. I took him aside and told him that if he stuck at running, he could one day compete for Britain.”
Farah claimed his first major track title in the 3 000m at the 2009 European Indoor Championships in Turin and followed it up with a 5 000m/10 000m double at the following year’s European Championships in Barcelona. He moved to the United States in 2011 to work under marathon great Alberto Salazar and overcame disappointment in the 10 000m at that year’s World Championships in Daegu – when he was pipped in the last 50 metres – to triumph in the 5 000. Despite plans to run next year’s London Marathon, the perpetually smiling Farah says he does not intend to turn his back on the track.
CuRRAGH: War Command has been given the go-ahead to compete in the keeneland Phoenix Stakes at the Curragh. The unbeaten colt won the Coventry Stakes at Royal Ascot by six lengths in June and is now set to step into Group One company. Trainer Aidan O’Brien said: “War Command worked well this morning and will definitely take his place in the Phoenix. “There’s also the possibility that we’ll run Fountain Of Youth and Wilshire Boulevard.” Johnny Murtagh, meanwhile, will partner Ambiance in Sunday’s contest. AGENCIES
Mickelson dreams of final showdown with Tiger
APRIL oUT oF woRLd CHAMPs sTan in cHarge in PanaMa PAnAMA: Anselmo Moreno, the WBA bantamweight champion since 2008, will defend his title for the eleventh time this weekend. The Panamanian and William Urina, a Colombian, meet in a battle of southpaws in Panama City on Saturday night. South African Stan Christodoulou, one of the most experienced officials in international boxing, will be the referee. The 28-year-old Moreno has a professional record of 33-2-1, including 12 wins inside the distance. But he is coming off his first defeat in ten years and the second of his career. He lost to Abner Mares in November last year when he moved op a division to challenge for the WBC superbantamweight belt. He won the title when he beat Wladimir Siderenko about five years ago. Urina, 28, has a record of 24-2, including 20 short-cut wins. He has won seven fights since losing to Omar Navaez in June 2011 when they fought for the WBO junior bantamweight belt. AGENCIES
South Africa’s hope of a good showing in the men’s marathon event at the IAAF World Championships in Moscow next week was dealt a further blow on Tuesday when Lusapho April pulled out with an Achilles injury.
“I’m very disappointed I will miss the World Champs,” April said on Tuesday. “I have Achilles tendonitis and it could take weeks or months to heal, but hopefully it won’t be too long.” The sixathlete provisional marathon team was sized down to only three after Irvette van Zyl withdrew from the women’s team. An administrative blunder by
Athletics SA (ASA) also saw Cornelia Joubert being withdrawn from the team. Joubert ran a qualification time of two hours 39 minutes (2:39) at the Orange Marathon in Mauritius in June, but it was later discovered the event was not recognised as a qualification event by the IAAF. Earlier, South Africa’s top longdistance runner Rene Kalmer declared herself unavailable for selection as she was not fully fit to compete at the highest level. April’s withdrawal left South Africa with only three representatives in the marathon. South Africa would now be represented by Hendrick Ramaala and Sibusiso Mzima in the men’s race, while Tanith Maxwell will be the only woman her event. Ramaala, 41, will be appearing in his sixth World Championships. April booked his place for the global showpiece after he set a new course record at the Hannover Marathon in May, winning in a personal best time of 2:08:32, shaving off 20 seconds from the previous record set by Yusuf Songoka in 2010.
MuIRfIeLD: Phil Mickelson is dreaming of a final-day showdown with Tiger Woods at the 95th US PGA Championship this week. Woods has 14 majors to his name but his last was at the US Open five years ago - while Mickelson is coming into Oak Hill off the back of his fifth major victory at Muirfield last month. “I’m as motivated as ever to compete and to play and get the best golf out of me, to hopefully play against Tiger when he’s playing his best,” said Mickelson, who won this title at Baltusrol in 2005. “That would ultimately be the goal. If I can play as well as I can at the same time he’s doing the same, I would love that opportunity.” For the year’s final tournament, world No 1 Woods and second-ranked Mickelson are heavy favourites and that is exactly how Mickleson likes it. AGENCIES
PLAyeRs seT FoR dIFFICULT BUT FAIR TesT AT oAK HILL ROCHESTER AGENCIES
A formidable finish, challenging rough and a difficult but fair test overall lies in store for the players this week when Oak Hill Country Club’s East Course stages its third PGA Championship. Golf’s leading players have assembled in the leafy surrounds of upstate New York for the year’s final major, featuring a 156-man field that includes 99 of the world’s top 100 with South Africa Louis Oosthuizen (hiprelated injury) the lone absentee. “The golf course is in fantastic shape,” Tiger Woods told reporters on Tuesday. “It’s dry now, it’s got some speed to it, and the rough is certainly up. It’s clumpy. It’s imperative to hit the ball in
the fairways and hit the ball on the greens, because it’s going to be tough to get up and down.” Asked how he felt the par-70 layout set up for his game, Woods replied: “Well, I like it. I liked it when I played here in ‘03.” Woods tied for 39th when the PGA was last held here a decade ago, American Shaun Micheel emerging as a shock winner. “I think it’s a fantastic golf course,” Woods said. “It’s tough. It’s right in front of you. There are really no surprises out there. “You just have to play well. This is one of those courses where you’ve just got to bring it ball-striking wise. You’ve got to hit the ball well.” Phil Mickelson was lavish in his praise for Oak Hill after playing a
practice round on Tuesday with fellow Americans Rickie Fowler, Peter Uihlein and Brooks Koepka. “The golf course here is just in incredible shape,” Mickelson said. “It’s one of the best setups I’ve ever seen. “The way the PGA has set it up with the graduated rough, the way they have rewarded good shots, and they have not overly penalised poorly struck shots, they have severely penalized poorly struck ones. “I just think it’s incredibly well thought out and should identify the best player this week. The golf course is a fair, difficult test that you want, without going over the edge and without trying to protect par.” According to Mickelson, the real sting comes in the tail on Oak Hill’s heavily tree-lined East Course.
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Thursday, 8 August, 2013
obama gets ‘personal’ as rift with russia over snowden grows WASHINGTON AGENCIES
RESIDENT Obama has canceled plans to meet with Russian President Vladimir Putin in the wake of the country’s decision to offer temporary asylum to Edward Snowden, the former US spy agency contractor who leaked secret information, the White House announced Wednesday. “Given our lack of progress on issues such as missile defense and arms control, trade and commercial relations, global security issues, and human rights and civil society in the last 12 months, we have informed the Russian govern-
ment that we believe it would be more constructive to postpone the summit until we have more results from our shared agenda,” White House spokesman Jay Carney said in a statement. “Russia’s disappointing decision to grant Edward Snowden temporary asylum was also a factor that we considered in assessing the current state of our bilateral relationship.” Obama still plans to travel to Russia in September for the G-20 summit in St. Petersburg. But the White House said the Moscow visit would be replaced by a trip to Sweden to discuss trade and investment. The decision comes just two days before Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel and Secretary of
State John F. Kerry are scheduled to meet with their Russian counterparts in Washington. Carney said that meeting would still take place on Friday “to discuss how we can best make progress moving forward on the full range of issues in our bilateral relationship.” Obama’s decision was quickly praised by one congressional ally. “President Putin is acting like a schoolyard bully and doesn’t deserve the respect a bilateral summit would have accorded him,” Sen. Charles E. Schumer (D-N.Y.) said in a statement. Relations between Obama and Putin were tense even before the Snowden affair. The leaders have clashed over a number of issues, in-
cluding Iran’s nuclear program and most recently Russia’s support for Syrian President Bashar Assad. Putin did not attend when Obama hosted the G-8 summit at Camp David in 2012. The leaders last met in June in Northern Ireland, where their awkward rapport was on display. Obama’s impatience with Russia showed Tuesday night in a taped interview with Jay Leno on the “Tonight Show.” He told Leno he was disappointed that Russian officials decided to grant temporary asylum to Snowden, who fled to Moscow after he leaked US secrets. “I was disappointed because even though we don’t have an extradition treaty with them, tradition-
ally we have tried to respect if there’s a lawbreaker or an alleged lawbreaker in their country, we evaluate it and we try to work with them,” Obama told Leno. “They didn’t do that with us. And in some ways it’s reflective of some underlying challenges that we’ve had with Russia lately.” But Obama said the two sides still have things to work on together.
“A lot of what’s been going on hasn’t been major breaks in the relationship,” he said. “But there have been times where they slip back into Cold War thinking and a Cold War mentality. And what I consistently say to them, and what I say to President Putin, is that’s the past and we’ve got to think about the future, and there’s no reason why we shouldn’t be able to cooperate more effectively than we do.”
Eid in Middle East today, likely in Pakistan tomorrow ISLAMABAD APP
ISLAMABAD: A girl looks outside from the window of a passenger bus on Wednesday as a large number of people began returning to their hometowns to celebrate Eidul Fitr with their families. INP
Pak concerns over Indian role in Afghanistan not groundless: US WASHINGTON SPECIAL CORRESPONDENT
Pakistan’s concerns over India’s presence in Afghanistan are exaggerated but “not groundless”, US Special Representative James Dobbins told the BBC in an interview. However, Dobbins said the Indian presence in Afghan cities was minuscule and it was “perfectly reasonable” because of their economic and cultural ties. The special envoy for Afghanistan and Pakistan, who has recently returned from a trip to Islamabad along with the Secretary of State John Kerry, noted that Islamabad was also concerned about the issue of “cross-border militancy”. “The dominant infiltration of militants is from Pakistan into Afghanistan, but we recognise that there is some infiltration of hostile militants from the other direction as well. So Pakistan’s concerns aren’t groundless… They are simply, in our judgement, somewhat exaggerated,” Dobbins said,
according to the British broadcasting service. In the past, US officials have expressed such sentiments in private, but this is the first time that a diplomat has said it openly. Kabul has often blamed Pakistanbacked militants for violence in Afghanistan, the BBC report said. Dobbins said the issue had been discussed at great length with Pakistan. “We do remain concerned about the relative freedom with which Afghan insurgents can operate out of Pakistan,” he said. “We believe that Pakistan, Afghanistan and the US need to collaborate much more closely to deal with this threat of crossborder infiltration.” He said Afghan President Hamid Karzai was “quite warm” to the idea of talking to the Taliban and had asked Pakistan to facilitate contact between the Afghan High Peace Council and the insurgents. According to BBC, the US diplomat said he hoped that the talks could begin within the next three months.
chinese judges disciplined over prostitution scandal SHANGHAI AGENCIES
Three Chinese judges from Shanghai have been expelled from the Communist Party and a fourth was placed on probation after an online video emerged allegedly showing the men hiring prostitutes. An anonymous blogger last week posted the surveillance video, which appeared to show the men taking prostitutes to hotel rooms after dining with a construction company manager at a local luxury resort. State media say a local disciplinary commission and the Shanghai Municipal Higher People’s Court, where all four men work, have recommended that they be stripped of their positions. A rising number of Chinese have taken to the Internet to expose government wrongdoing and corruption, which the Communist Party has acknowledged is rampant within its ranks. President Xi Jinping, who took power in a leadership transition that began late last year, has said failure to deal with corruption could threaten the party’s grip on power. But while the government’s anti-corruption campaign has exposed some low-level misdeeds, efforts to expose misconduct within senior levels of the party have been condemned as a threat to social stability.
Several countries in the Middle East will celebrate Eidul Fitr today (Thursday) while there is high probability of the Shawwal moon being sighted today in Pakistan. Meteorological Department Director General (DG) Arif Mehmood said it was necessary for the moon to attain the age of 41 hours to become visible. “The moon will grow older than 41 hours on Thursday,” he said. “However, it may be difficult to sight the moon due to the sky being overcast,” he said. The Met Office announced that the moon would be clearly visible in Balochistan and Sindh but the chances of sighting the moon in Punjab on Thursday were 50 percent. Pakistan will celebrate Eidul Fitr on Friday if the moon is sighted today. Meanwhile, several Middle Eastern countries including Saudi Arabia, UAE, Kuwait, Jordan and Palestine will celebrate Eidul Fitr today. However, Oman announced that the Shawwal moon had not been sighted and Eid would be cele-
brated tomorrow (Friday). The Muslim scholars in Saudi Arabia appeared split on Tuesday on whether the end-of-Ramadan moon should be sighted on Tuesday, which marks 28 days of the fasting month. Earlier, the Supreme Court of Saudi Arabia had announced to meet on Tuesday evening to hear from people who may have sighted the moon, an announcement that startled many scholars worldwide as it would mean that Ramadan would have lasted only 28 days instead of the requisite 29 or 30 days. The statement by the court implied that there had been an error with the July 10 start date of this year’s Ramadan, and that the holy month of fasting should have started on July 9 instead. Saudi newspapers on Monday quoted a statement from the Supreme Court that encouraged members of the public to sight the Eid moon on Tuesday night. Religious scholars reacted to the news with surprise and some disagreement, as a Tuesday evening moon-sighting would indicate a mistake in the start date of Ramadan.
al Qaeda in Pak, afghanistan on path to defeat: us WASHINGTON ONLINE
The US has said that the core of Al Qaeda in Afghanistan and Pakistan is on the path to defeat. State Department Spokeswoman Jen Psaki while briefing newsmen in Washington Wednesday said the US had made a great deal of success against Al Qaeda core in Afghanistan and Pakistan and they took a number of steps to decimate the group’s leadership, including, most importantly, Osama bin Laden. The focus, however, had shifted to the Middle East “where first on that list is always Al Qaeda in Arabian Peninsula,” she added. Psaki said the State Department had also ordered a reduction in the number of emergency US government personnel in Yemen. “We are concerned about a threat stream indicating the potential for terrorist attacks against the US persons or facilities overseas, especially emanating from the Arabian Peninsula,” she said.
Cabinet will be extended to include JUI-F members LAHORE NADEEM SyED
As the federal government paves way for the Jamiat Ulema-e-Islam-Fazl (JUI-F) to join the government, the federal cabinet will be expanded after Eidul Fitr to include party leaders, sources told Pakistan Today on Wednesday. The sources said the expansion was taking place to mainly induct JUI-F members in the cabinet, but some Pakistan Muslim LeagueNawaz leaders are also in the race to capture the limelight as federal ministers. Two favourites for the cabinet slots from the JUI are Akram Khan Durrani and Maulana Gafoor Haideri. However, some JUI leaders privately discount the chances of Akram Khan becoming a federal minister from the JUI-F quota. The prospects of JUI-F and PML-N joining hands and making a political alliance are quite bright after Fazlur Rehman positioned
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himself against the PTI both in the national and provincial arenas. Meanwhile, the expected cabinet expansion is also considered by some PML-N aspirants as a last chance to enter the cabinet. Those vying for a cabinet slot include Dr Tariq Fazal, PML-N MNA from federal capital. He is a close friend of Chaudhry Nisar and is making desperate attempts to find a berth in the cabinet. Another gentleman trying hard to get into the cabinet is Abbas Khan Afridi, a member from FATA, who only few months ago was quite close to the PPP leadership. kP GOVERNOR: Mehtab Khan Abbasi has been tipped as the most favourite for the gubernatorial office in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa. Earlier, Zafar Iqbal Jhagra and Abbasi were the two main contenders for the ceremonial office. Sources in the PML-N revealed that Sharifs had recently given a green signal for Abbasi’s appointment as the KP governor.