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Pakistan exerting Pakistan continues to insufficient pressure consider India existenon militant groups: CIA tial threat: US PAGE 22

Rs15.00 Vol ii no 217 22 pages


PM will be indicted if Zardari immunity is not proved: SC ISLAMABAD


USTICe Nasirul Mulk, the head of the seven-member special bench of the Supreme Court (SC) hearing the National Reconciliation Ordinance (NRO) implementation case, told Aitzaz Ahsen, counsel for Prime Minister Yousaf Raza Gilani, during a hearing on Wednesday to convince the court that President Asif Ali Zardari had immunity or the court would indict the prime minister for contempt of court. Ahsen stuck to his position that no mala fide was involved in the prime minister’s statement before the court and it should be treated as informal. His argument was that the prime minister was an ordinary citizen, but the court did not agree to his submission and questioned how he could be an ordinary citizen when all resources of the government were available to him and he was also a legislator. Ahsen, however, did not budge from his position that the letter to the Swiss authorities could not be written as long as the president was in office. He also said there was no harm in case the letter was written but argued that if the letter was not written, it did not warrant contempt of court. From his arguments before the court, it seems that the government is adamant not to reopen cases against President Zardari as the court was again informed that the letter could not be written because the president enjoyed immunity under Article 248 of the constitution. The special bench, headed by Justice Mulk and comprising Justice Asif


Lahore — edition


Pakistani cinema’s going through a rough patch: Ali

Saeed Khan Khosa, Justice Sarmad Jalal Osmany, Justice ejaz Afzal Khan, Justice Ijaz Ahmed Chaudhry, Justice Gulzar Ahmed and Justice Muhammad Ather Saeed, told Aitzaz Ahsen to conclude his preliminary arguments by Thursday (today). Justice Mulk told Ahsen that if he could not convince the court that President Zardari enjoyed complete immunity under Article 248 of the constitution, it would proceed in the matter in accordance with the law and frame charges against the prime minister. He said the prime minister should have written to Swiss authorities to reopen graft cases against the president before invoking the defence of immunity for the president. Ahsen then requested the court to give the premier the benefit of doubt, as he said his client had obtained proper advice and then decided not to write letter to the Swiss authorities. Justice Mulk told Ahsen that if he proved the president’s immunity, the court would not proceed further in the matter. Ahsen continued to argue that the prime minister honestly believed the president enjoyed immunity. Justice Mulk noted that the prime minister had stated before the court that the decision of not writing the letter was his own. Justice Khosa noted that the prime minister had stated that he was ready to go to jail but would not write the letter. “Is that not disobedience of the court order?” he asked. He said further that the prime minister was acting on the advice of his subordinates but was not ready to obey court orders. Continued on page 04

thursday, 2 February, 2012 Rabi-ul-awal 9, 1433

Pakistan not aiding taliBan Secret NaTO report says ISI aware of the locations of senior Taliban leaders g Khar says charges are ‘old wine in an even older bottle’ g


Pakistan strongly refuted NATO allegations on Wednesday that it was assisting Taliban militants fighting the US-led foreign troops in Afghanistan, warning that such baseless accusations could further harm the already strained relations between Islamabad and Washington. A secret NATO report obtained by the British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC) had said the Taliban in Afghanistan were being directly assisted by Pakistani security services. “The leaked report, derived from thousands of interrogations, claims the Taliban remain defiant and have wide support among the Afghan people,” the

KaBul: foreign Minister hina rabbani Khar shakes hands with her afghan counterpart zalmai rasool after a joint press conference on Wednesday. afp BBC said. “A BBC correspondent says the report is painful reading for international forces and the Afghan government,” it added. The report also alleges that Pakistan knows the locations of senior Taliban leaders. However, Foreign Office Spokesman Abdul Basit said in a statement: “We are committed

to non-interference in Afghanistan. Pakistan has suffered enormously because of the long conflict in Afghanistan. A stable and peaceful Afghanistan is in our own interest and we are very much cognizant of this.” Continued on page 04

15 FC men, 7 militants killed in Bolan gun battle QUETTA Shahzada zulfiqar

At least 15 soldiers of the Frontier Corps Balochistan were killed and 12 others left injured in a fierce gun battle between security forces and Baloch militants in Bolan district, the FC said on Wednesday. Seven attackers were also reported to have been killed in the clash, however, no official source or militant group confirmed the toll. The Balochistan Liberation Army claimed responsibility for the attack later at night, however, the

FC had held Baloch self-exiled leader Nawabzada Hairbyar Marri responsible. According to reports, the Baloch militants were estimated to be over three dozen in number and attacked checkposts in the coalmine fields of Margut area of Bolan on Tuesday afternoon using light and heavy weapons. The paramilitary forces returned fire that led both parties into a gun battle which lasted several hours in the difficult mountainous region. Due to darkness and difficult terrain, reinforcements could not reach the battle site on Tuesday. However on

Wednesday morning, reinforcements and choppers were sent to the Margut area to collect the dead and injured. All dead bodies and injured were moved through a helicopter to Quetta. The injured were admitted to Combined Military Hospital (CMH) for treatment while the bodies were sent to their ancestral villages for burial. Some sources reported that the FC Balochistan personnel on Tuesday came across seven bodies of civilians during a search operation, believed to be those of the attackers. However, official sources as well as FC spokesman did not confirm.

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02 News

Thursday, 2 february 2012




forEIgn nEwS

‘library of Congress’ only galaxy of knowledge in world Pakistan to reset uS ties on equitable basis: Sherry

romney leads uS republicans after big florida win

Quick Look

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Police probe anthrax parcel sent to PM’s House ISLAMABAD afP/STaff rEPOrT

Police on Wednesday said they were investigating how and why a parcel containing anthrax was sent to the prime minister’s official residence in Islamabad last month. It appeared to be the first reported case of anthrax sent to a government office in the country. “The parcel containing anthrax powder was sent last month, about 20 days ago. After the laboratory test confirmed that the parcel contained anthrax we registered a case against unknown people,” said police officer Hakim Khan. In his application, PM Secretariat Administration Deputy Secretary Abdul Hafeez told secretariat police that on October 18, 2011, during the scanning of Prime Minster’s mails, they found a letter which carried anthrax. Upon this, the secretariat police registered an FIR under section (270) against unidentified accused on Tuesday night. There was no immediate confirmation from the Prime Minister’s House. Neither was it immediately clear who was responsible, or how they could have accessed anthrax, of any quality, in Pakistan. Police said the parcel was posted from the Jamshoro district in Sindh. “We have sent a police team to investigate it and to find the culprits there,” said Khan, an officer at the secretariat police station. But in Jamshoro, 180 kilometres (113 miles) northeast of Karachi, police said they had not been informed by Islamabad of any anthrax delivery, instead finding out through local media reports. “We have not yet received any instructions from the government to investigate this matter,” local police official Bashir Ahmed told AFP. “We have asked the local post office protectively to check their records to know about the sender. “We can’t say how long it will take to complete the investigation. We expect a quick result if the sender’s identity is not fake.”

Jet strike kills 20 Taliban PESHAWAR

fIa seals three firms manufacturing deadly Isotab g

Efroze chemicals, Swiss Pharmaceutical and Zafa Pharmaceutical raided KARACHI


iSMail dilaWar

He Federal Investigation Agency (FIA) on Wednesday raided at least three pharmaceutical firms for manufacturing medicine Isotab, which claimed several lives in various hospitals of Lahore. According to FIA, while seizing raw material from two of the raided firms, Swiss Pharmaceuticals and Zafa Pharmaceuticals, the agency also sealed a Karachi-based factory of efroze Chemical Industries. The FIA also put names of three owners of the raided firms on the exit Control List (eCL) besides blocking the official website of efroze Chemicals. The sealed factory was located at Godam Chowrangi in Korangi Industrial Area, while its head office was situated at PeCHS. “I had ordered the raids in which we sealed efroze Chemicals while some raw material was also seized from two other firms,” FIA Sindh Director Moazzam Jah Ansari told Pakistan Today. He said that during the raids, around 47 kilogrammes raw material used for manufacturing Isotab was also seized. Ansari said that the FIA had restricted foreign travel of three owners of drug manufacturing companies. “Nadir, Abdullah Feroz and Khurram Munaf’s names have been put on the eCL,” Ansari said. Feroz was CeO of efroze Chemicals. When

asked why only efroze Chemicals was singled out for being seized, Ansari replied that because the company had “negative” reports given by lab researchers from London. “The other two companies Swiss Pharmaceuticals and Zafa were not rated as negative,” he added. The laboratory tests proved that the substandard medicine, which contained an overdose of anti-malarial chemical 14 times more than the required quantity, caused deaths of scores of patients suffering form cardiac diseases in Lahore. FIA Deputy Director Akbar Baloch reportedly said that

the seized raw material would be sent for further laboratory tests, after which owners of the firms would be arrested. The efroze Chemicals chairman reportedly claimed that the scandal was a conspiracy against his firm. He claimed that the chemical, which proved fatal in Lahore, had been stolen from his factory in September. The issue got further politicised when Sindh Information Minister Shazia Marri and Punjab CM Shahbaz Sharif issued statements against each other’s governments.

Cabinet misled by finance secy on POL levy collection?



Pakistan Air Force (PAF) warplanes pounded militant hideouts in Orakzai Agency before dawn on Wednesday, killing at least 20 Taliban insurgents, security officials said. The jets targeted hideouts and at least four compounds were hit, officials said. “At least 20 Taliban militants were killed in the bombing,” a military official said. Local intelligence officials also confirmed the air strikes. The hideouts belonged to Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) commanders Mulla Tufan and Commander Moheyuddin, a security official said. There are reports that Moheyuddin may have been killed in the bombing, he said. A military official in Peshawar said “four hideouts have been destroyed and the death toll may go up”.

MiaN aBrar

SaNGla: a speaker shares his views with the audience during a seminar on Mr hameed Nizami organised at the Government hameed Nizami Technology College for Boys.

Story on Page 17

The apathy and indifference of the members of the federal cabinet is evident from the fact that none of them paid any heed to the woes of the people who have been massively burdened with the hike in the prices of petroleum products and the imposition of a 10 percent cess on the compressed natural gas (CNG). A source told Pakistan Today that towards the end of the federal cabinet meeting, Minister of State for Human Resource Development Shaikh Waqas Akram made a point that the increase in POL prices was too much, but no one bothered to discuss or raise the issue and all, including the prime minister, kept mum and the meeting was called off. “We are elected representatives of the people and answerable to them. How would we face them in the upcoming election,” said Waqas Akram, but the prime minister did not respond. Meanwhile, the federal cabinet was apparently misled by finance

secretary on collection of petroleum levy as Information Minister Dr Firdous Ashiq Awan informed a press briefing that the cabinet was told that the government had missed its target of petroleum levy collection. She said a target of Rs 120 billion had been fixed by the government under petroleum levy, but the government was still short of its target, as only Rs 20 billion had been collected in six months. “This means that we are already facing a deficit of Rs 40 billion. This deficit has cropped up as the government did not pass on the impact of increase in oil prices in the international market to our people. If we did not pass on this raise this month, we would have had to meet the deficit by printing new notes which would ultimately lead to a rise in inflation,” she said. The claim by the information minister was in contradiction to a statement issued by the Oil and Gas Regulatory Authority (OGRA) only a day earlier that had put the figure of collection of Rs 153 billion under petroleum levy.

“OGRA had, however, recommended to the federal government that POL prices be kept unchanged by absorbing the said increase in petroleum levy to provide relief to public at large. OGRA had also highlighted that estimated receipts of the federal government from Petroleum Levy (PL) and sales tax for the period July-December 2011 amounted to Rs 153.3 billion, which was Rs 9.2 billion higher than JulyDecember 2010 receipts of Rs 144.1 billion,” said a brief statement issued by OGRA on Tuesday. However, when the information minister was confronted for quoting wrong figures to the media, the minister said that finance secretary had told these figures during the cabinet meeting. “The finance secretary is a responsible person and one must not doubt him,” she asserted, suggesting that OGRA may be at fault. She said that the prime minister had directed minister for finance to evolve a strategy in consultation with the provincial governments to ensure provision of daily routine items at controlled rates.

PIC enquiry committee arrests six LAHORE: The enquiry committee investigating the case of spurious drugs distributed by the Punjab Institute of Cardiology (PIC) late on Wednesday arrested six people for investigation. Sources told Pakistan Today that the enquiry committee completed its initial enquiry and arrested two doctors from the purchase committee of the PIC, a pharmacist, a storekeeper and two people from Umer Distributors, a company that supplies medicines to PIC from Karachi. Sources said the committee had arrested the six men on charges of being directly responsible for the tragic deaths of over 100 people. Police had, however, not mentioned the arrests in their records and would formally arrest them on Thursday, said the sources. The police might register cases against the arrested people under Sections 319, 471, 468, 420 or 302 of the PPC, said the sources. STaff rEPOrT

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Thursday, 2 february 2012



Katrina to do daredevil stunts for ‘Ek Tha Tiger’

Pakistan keen to complete England whitewash

News 03

CoMMEnT Price hikes: Tough decisions but have to be taken.

Karachi’s unending woes: Target killings in Karachi again.

Nazir Naji says: Our dogged democracy: Even with problems, it’s still alive.

ahmed Yusuf says: Faultlines in Sindh’s politics: Mechanisms are in place to stop Sindh’s division.

imran husain says: A winning streak: Team Pakistan deserves kudos.

Story on Page 15

Story on Page 18

SC directs nADrA chairman to resolve eunuchs’ guardian issue ISLAMABAD


The Supreme Court on Wednesday directed the National Database and Registration Authority (NADRA) chairman to resolve the issue related to the registration of the eunuchs by their guardian name according to the rules.The court also ordered him not to register fake eunuchs. A three-member bench headed by Chief Justice Iftikhar Muhammad Chaudhry heard the petition filed by Aslam Khaki seeking welfare of eunuchs. The chief justice said in his remarks that jobs should be provided to eunuchs and the government should get their services in the polio campaign. The court was informed that some eunuchs wanted their guru’s name to be registered as that of their guardian, but NADRA had rejected it. The court then directed the NADRA chairman to resolve the matter according to the rules. During the hearing, some eunuchs from Muzaffargarh told the court that they had got a tender of Rs 0.6 million for the construction of a drainage system in the area. Upon this, the court appreciated their efforts. All provinces submitted their reports about their efforts regarding the welfare of eunuchs. The court was told that the Balochistan government had started the registration of eunuchs and 135 eunuchs had been registered in Quetta. The Balochistan government said it was ready to provide jobs of Rs 10,000 to eunuchs in the income tax department. On the other hand, an official of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa told the court that 36 eunuchs had been registered in the province. Punjab’s representatives informed the court that 480 eunuchs had applied for registration, of which 331 had been registered. Sindh’s officials said the provincial government had issued NICs to 34 eunuchs.

STaff rEPOrT


ARLIAMeNTARIANS representing the National Assembly Standing Committee on Human Rights on Wednesday played politics and tried to expose the Punjab and the federal governments through specific questions as they discussed the deaths caused by the spurious drugs in Lahore. PPP female parliamentarians, including Shakeela Khanim Rashid, Mahreen Razaque Bhutto and Yasmeen Rehman were most interested in knowing why the Punjab government had not appointed a health minister, why had it not given consent to form a drug regulatory authority (DRA) and whether the drug inspec-

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Articles on Page 12-13

MPs play politics as they discuss PIC deaths

STaff rEPOrT


tors who were responsible for drug testing were appointed by the provincial government or the federal government. Shakeela repeatedly asked the Cabinet Division officials as to why had the Punjab government not appointed a health minister but the officials and committee chairman Riaz Fatyana laughed away the question. Dr Attiya Inayatullah asked the officials whether drug regulation came under the provincial governments or the federal government. The representatives of the Cabinet Division told the committee that it was agreed that until a DRA was formed, under an interim arrangement, the Cabinet Division would look after the affairs of the defunct health ministry which was supposed to oversee research, import, export

and manufacturing of the drugs. The officials believed that the Lahore incident might be the outcome of some mistake in the laboratory or some annoyed employee of a medicine firm might have tampered with the raw material used in the manufacturing of the medicine. The chairman formed a five-member committee to take up health issues with the Senate’s standing committee concerned and propose measures so that such cases did not resurface. The committee asked the Ministry of Human Rights to prepare two draft bills aimed at compensation for civil victims of terrorism and natural disasters to protect the witnesses and the victims. The committee expressed concern over the killings of missing persons in the custody of the law enforcing agencies.

Egypt football violence kills 73: medics CAIRO rEuTErS

At least 73 people were killed after a soccer pitch invasion in the egyptian city of Port Said, Health Ministry sources said, raising the official estimate of the death count from 25. Soon after reports of the pitch invasion spread, egyptian television showed images of a fire in Cairo’s soccer stadium, after the referee cancelled a match between the teams Zamalek and Ismaili.

Shahbaz shouldn’t blame Centre for his failures: firdous ISLAMABAD STaff rEPOrT

20th Amendment to be tabled, approved from parliament with consensus: PM ISLAMABAD: Prime Minister Yousaf Raza Gilani on Wednesday said the proposed 20th Constitutional Amendment would be tabled and approved from parliament with consensus. Talking to members and leaders of coalition parties at a dinner he hosted for them at the PM House on Wednesday, Gilani said the government would not bulldoze anything in the House. Gilani informed the coalition partners that he had already talked to chief of JUI-F Maulana Fazlur Rehman and sought his cooperation for the smooth passage of the 20th Constitutional Amendment. Besides MNAs, the dinner was attended by various leaders of coalition parties including Chaudhry Shujaat

Hussain, Haji Munir Khan Orakzai, Haider Abbas Rizvi, Babar Ghauri, Ghulam Muhammad Bilour, Haji Khuda Bakhsh Rajar and Saima Akhtar Bharwana. The coalition partners assured the prime minister of their full support for the adoption of the 20th Constitutional Amendment. They said the amendment would benefit all the parties by giving a legal cover to by-elections. The prime minister thanked the coalition partners for strengthening democracy and political system in the country. earlier, PML-Q President Chaudhry Shujaat Hussain called on Prime Minister Yousaf Raza Gilani at Prime Minister’s House on Wednesday and discussed present political situation in the country. aPP

Calling Punjab Chief Minister Shahbaz Sharif a “political actor”, Information Minister Firdous Ashiq Awan on Wednesday said he was trying to shift the blame on the federal government for his government’s failure in checking the distribution of a toxic batch of drugs distributed by the Punjab Institute of Cardiology (PIC) that killed around 120 people. Briefing journalists on the cabinet’s decisions, Firdous said the prime minister had decided to convene a meeting of the Council of Common Interests (CCI) on February 9 to resolve all issues between the federal and provincial governments, including the issue of Drug Control Authority.

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04 News Baloch nationalists force shut broadcast of news channels QUETTA: On call by Baloch Students’ Organisation-Muhiuddin and Balochistan National Party-Mengal, cable operators suspended the transmission of news TV channels across the province, including in the provincial capital Quetta. BSO-M and BNP had threatened a week ago that they would suspend transmissions of all TV channels from February 1 in Baloch-dominated areas throughout the province against their partial role towards Balochistan and its issues, ignoring the excesses and cruelties being done in the province, particularly the targeted killing of political activists and recovery of bodies of Baloch missing persons. STaff rEPOrT

Thursday, 2 february, 2012

Spot-fixer amir released early from prison MONITORINg DESK

Cricketer Muhammad Amir has been released from jail, where he was serving a sixmonth term for spot-fixing, around three months ahead of schedule. Amir, 19, was detained for six months in a young offenders’ institution after he admitted bowling two intentional no-balls in the Lord’s Test against england in August 2010. He was found guilty and jailed at the start of November 2011. As part of the sentence, Amir is to return to Pakistan, though he is expected to remain in London for meetings with his lawyers over an appeal to the Court of Arbitration for

Sport against a five-year ban imposed on him by the International Cricket Council. Amir, along with teammates Muhammad Asif and Salman Butt, were punished by ICC bans in February last year. Asif and Butt, serving one year and two and a half years respectively, both remain behind bars. Pakistan Cricket Board Chairman Zaka Ashraf has left the door open for him to eventually return to international cricket. “Whenever he is cleared by the International Cricket Council and serves his punishment, we think he needs intense counselling and then the selectors can decide about him,” Ashraf said last month.

7 PIA airhostesses ppp Balochistan ministers’ PM will be indicted Continued FRom page 1 held in new York cousin killed Ahsen then stated that the MONITORINg DESK

Seven PIA airhostesses were arrested on Wednesday at New York Airport for allegedly smuggling cigarettes and mobile phones. A PIA spokesman confirmed the incident, adding that the airhostesses had been released shortly after their detention. The spokesman also said that an enquiry has been ordered into the matter.

Elahi flays Punjab govt for PIC deaths KARAcHI: Senior Federal Minister Chaudhry Pervez elahi said on Wednesday that the Punjab government was responsible for killing of 140 people caused by use of substandard drugs. STaff rEPOrT


Two persons, including a cousin of Pakistan People’s Party (PPP) provincial ministers, were killed and five others, including three women, were wounded in separate gun and hand grenade attacks across Balochistan on Wednesday. excise Inspector Rajab Umrani, who was the cousin of PPP ministers Mir Sadiq Umrani and Mohammad Amin Umrani, was found dead in the Mirwa area in Naseerabad district. Before his death, Rajab was riding a motorcycle, along with an armed guard – an Afghan national, who could not be located. Police said it was not clear if Rajab was

murdered by his guard or some other individuals. Police handed over the body to Rajab’s heirs after autopsy. Separately, unidentified men hurled a hand grenade at a house in Killidur Muhammad area of Sibi and escaped. One man was killed and five others, including three women, were wounded. The house was allegedly used for immoral activities. Police cordoned off the area and started investigations after registering a case. In another incident, robbers looted Rs 10.9 million from the education Department’s office in Kharan district. Police said that four masked men armed with weapons barged into the department’s office and escaped with Rs 10.9 million.

matter of implementation of the court order should have been referred to the high court. Justice Mulk observed that Article 204 of the constitution empowered the apex court to take action against those who did not implement its orders. “Seventeen judges have unanimously passed a crystal clear order in the NRO case. Do you want another order?” Justice Khosa asked Ahsen, who replied that action on the order was currently not possible. He said if the prime minister had obtained advice, there was no harm, but if he did not, it did not warrant a crime. Justice Ather Saeed enquired who would be responsible if the Rules of Business were used wrongly.

pakistan not aiding Taliban Continued FRom page 1 He said: “Our stakes in peace in Afghanistan are far higher than any other country.” Terming the NATO accusations as ridiculous, he said they were “frivolous, to put it mildly”. “We have long been concerned about ties between elements of the ISI (Inter-Services Intelligence) and some extremist networks,” Pentagon spokesman Captain John Kirby said according to a foreign news agency report. However, he added that the US Defence Department had not yet seen the report. Foreign Minister Hina Rabbani Khar said on Wednesday that Islamabad had no hidden agenda in Afghanistan. Khar told reporters after meeting Afghan President Hamid Karzai that claims against Pakistan’s sincerity in the war against terrorism had been made “many, many times”. “Pakistan stands behind any initiative that the Afghan government takes for peace,” she said. Responding to the NATO report, Khar said allegations in the NATO report were “old wine in an even older bottle”. She said Pakistan wanted to have deep and long-standing relations with Afghanistan. “The intention of my visit here was to give a very strong message to Kabul about Pakistan’s desire to have a long-standing deep relationship with Afghanistan,” Khar told a joint press conference with her Afghan counterpart Zalmai Rasoul. During her visit she also allayed the Afghan government’s concerns, saying Pakistan did not have any secret agenda in Afghanistan. “Pakistan stands for Afghanistan’s independence, Pakistan stands for Afghanistan’s unity, and in this regard, any threat to Afghanistan’s unity and integrity is a threat against Pakistan,” she said. She also held a meeting with Afghan President Hamid Karzai and exchanged views on bilateral relations between the two neighbouring countries. She invited Karzai to visit Pakistan and attend the summit of Pakistan, Iran and Afghanistan scheduled for this month.

ARMY DISMISSIVE: Pakistan’s army opted for silence over the NATO report with the Inter-Services Public Relations (ISPR) did not consider the leaked report worth commenting on. “So the BBC has moved from ‘secret Pakistan’ to ‘NATO secret (leaks) report’. The report is not available and leaks are not worth commenting on,” said the ISPR. However, a security official who declined to be identified by name said such baseless accusations could harm the already strained ties and also damage the ongoing efforts on the part of both sides to put relations back on track and revive counter-terrorism cooperation. THE LEAKED REPORT: The NATO report said the Pakistani security services were secretly helping the Taliban, who assumed their victory was inevitable once Western troops left. The leaked “State of the Taliban” report - seen by the BBC and British newspaper The Times - was compiled from information gleaned from insurgent detainees and was given to NATO commanders in Afghanistan last month, the media reports said. It claims that Pakistan and its ISI agency were aware of the locations of senior Taliban leaders. The BBC said the report was based on material from 27,000 interrogations of more than 4,000 captured Taliban and al Qaeda operatives, plus other foreign fighters and civilians. “Pakistan’s manipulation of the Taliban senior leadership continues unabatedly,” the report was quoted as saying. “ISI officers tout the need for continued jihad and expulsion of foreign invaders from Afghanistan.” The Times quoted the report as saying the Taliban’s “strength, motivation, funding and tactical proficiency remains intact”, despite setbacks in 2011. “Many Afghans are already bracing themselves for an eventual return of the Taliban… Once ISAF is no longer a factor, Taliban consider their victory inevitable,” it said. The US Department of Defense said it could not comment on the report but set out its fears about Pakistan and its influence in Afghanistan.

“We have not seen the report, and therefore cannot offer comment on it specifically,” Pentagon spokesman George Little told AFP. “[But] we have long been concerned about ties between elements of the ISI and some extremist networks,” he added. In its conclusion, the report said there had been unprecedented interest in joining the Taliban cause in 2011 - even from members of the Afghan government. “Afghan civilians frequently prefer Taliban governance over the Afghan government, usually as a result of government corruption,” it was reported as saying. PAKISTAN HINDERING REcONcILIATION: The Times, in an editorial, said Pakistan was “actively hindering reconciliation” between the Taliban and Kabul. “Islamabad appears to be engaged in a systematic effort to destabilise the Kabul government of (President) Hamid Karzai prior to the withdrawal of Western forces, and to assist those attacking and killing those forces. The ISI emerges from this document looking considerably more villainous, even, than the Taliban itself,” it said. “The picture that is painted is very much one of a force that both expects, and is widely expected, to have a big stake in controlling the Afghanistan of the future,” it concluded. ‘NOT A STRATEGIc STUDY’: Lieutenant Colonel Jimmie Cummings, a spokesman for the NATOled International Security Assistance Force (ISAF), confirmed the existence of the document but said it was not a strategic study. Hours after The Times report, the Afghan Taliban said that no peace negotiation process had been agreed with the international community, “particularly the Americans”. Taliban spokesman Zabihullah Mujahid said in a statement that prior to any negotiations, confidence building measures must be completed, putting pressure on Washington to meet demands for the release of five Taliban in US custody. The hardline Islamist movement also said it had no plans to hold preliminary peace talks with Afghanistan’s government in Saudi Arabia, dismissing media reports of talks in the kingdom.

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Thursday, 2 february, 2012

News 05

Pakistan to reset US ties on equitable basis: Sherry WASHINgTON



AKISTAN’S Ambassador in Washington Sherry Rehman has said that her country wanted to forge a relationship with the United States based on principles of mutual trust and respect. “We want to reset our relations on a more equitable, consistent and predictable basis,” she said in her first interaction with Washington-based Pakistani media representatives since assuming her ambassadorial assignment. Ambassador Sherry spoke as a parlia-

mentary review of Pakistan’s relations with the United States neared its completion, more than two months after the November 26 strikes on Pakistani checkposts, which claimed lives of 24 soldiers in a major blow to bilateral ties. Islamabad, Sherry Rehman said, stood for peace and stability in the region and was working to improve its bilateral relations with its neighbours, including Afghanistan and India. She particularly referred to the situation in Afghanistan where NATO was preparing to hand over security to Afghan forces as it moves to the year 2014 deadline to end combat operations in Afghanistan and completely transfer se-

curity to the Afghans. “Pakistan wants to see a responsible withdrawal of international troops from Afghanistan,” she said, recalling repercussions that Pakistan had to contend with in the aftermath of post-Soviet withdrawal in 1990s as the world powers left Pakistan alone to deal with the wreckage of war that included social and security problems. Any instability in Afghanistan, the top Pakistani diplomat in Washington said, would affect Pakistan more than any other country in the region. Sherry also drew attention to Islamabad’s longstanding demand that it gets a fair treatment in terms of trade access to the United States.

“We are looking for trade, not aid — we are looking for a level playing field in trade relations, for our textile products.” However, she would not go into specifics of the kind of relations Pakistan would like to have with the United States, saying she would await the release of the parliamentary review. The envoy identified terrorism as a major menace for Pakistan and noted that the country, its forces and people have suffered the most in the anti-terror fight. Sherry assured the PakistaniAmerican community of facilitation by the embassy in providing consular services and issuing identity documents including passports.

Extremists admit plot to blow up London Stock Exchange LONDON afP

Four British extremists inspired by a former al Qaeda leader admitted in court on Wednesday to plotting to blow up the London Stock exchange in 2010. The men belonged to a group of fundamentalists who plotted a spate of mail bomb attacks during the run-up to Christmas that year and discussed launching a “Mumbai-style” atrocity, Woolwich Crown Court in London heard. Mohammed Chowdhury, 21, and Shah Rahman, 28, both from London, admitted preparing for acts of terrorism by planning to plant an improvised explosive device (IeD) in the toilets of the London Stock exchange. Brothers Gurukanth Desai, 30, and Abdul Miah, 25, both from Cardiff in Wales, admitted the same count. Five others, four from the central city of Stoke and another from Cardiff in Wales, also admitted involvement in the group. Police seized a hand-written target list that included the mayor of London, two rabbis and the US embassy during the arrests. Although they were not members of al Qaeda, prosecutors said they were inspired by the terror network and specifically Anwar alAwlaqi, a suspected leader of the group in Yemen who was killed in September in what is thought to have been a US drone strike. The nine defendants “were implementing the published strategy of AQAP” (al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula, the group’s deadliest global branch), said prosecution lawyer Andrew edis. The group, who met because of their membership of various extremist groups, had originally challenged the charges against them and were due to stand trial, but at the 11th hour they changed their pleas to guilty. They will be sentenced next week.

12 killed in road accident in Dir DIR STaff rEPOrT

Around 12 passengers, including women and children, were killed and eight others injured in a road accident near Sheringal town of Upper Dir on Wednesday. According to details, a passenger van bearing registration number PSD-176, which was part of a three-vehicle convoy taking a dead body from Timergara to Doog Darra, plunged into a ravine at Jitkot. The dead were identified as Siraj, Owais, Muhammad Yar, Shamim, Saeeda Bibi, Said Hakeem, Nawab, Amir Alam, and Inam. The injured, including seven women, were taken to Dir DHQ Hospital. Police and local residents said that the other two vans did not notice that the van had met an accident. Snow had turned the roads slippery in the area but the injured said that the driver’s drowsiness caused the accident.

KaraChi: Oil tankers are parked at Shireen Jinnah Colony due to suspension of NaTO supply. ONLINE

Politicians played a smart game MIAN ABRAR


ITH the memo controversy running out of steam, the country’s civilian leadership has emerged successful in handling the situation with the support of top politicians from both the ruling coalition and the opposition parties. But one should also reckon the sagacity demonstrated by Army Chief General Ashfaq Parvez Kayani and his colleagues who made every effort to keep the democratic system on track by bowing to the civilian rule. This was no doubt the first rare occasion, when despite tensions cropping up between the government and the armed forces, no opposition leader, including Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) chief Nawaz Sharif who actually took the memo to the Supreme Court, became part of any conspiracy against the democratic government. No politician made any backdoor contacts to invite the military for a takeover, as the tense situation in recent weeks could take an unexpected turn. In a recent meeting held at Punjab House, chiefs of opposition parties reportedly advised the PML-N chief not to pursue his petition on the memo, as any ensuing tensions might lead to military intervention. Nawaz, who is the most recent victim of a military coup in 1999, agreed to the advice. According to sources, Jamiat Ulemae-Islam-Fazl (JUI-F) chief Fazlur Rehman played the peacemaker’s role

and convinced Nawaz that the opposition parties should not use the memo to destabilise the Pakistan People’s Party (PPP) government, which is already on the verge of completing its tenure with nothing to lose. Fazl reasoned that the PPP could earn political sympathy if its government was toppled, sources said. Fazl also suggested that negotiations were a better way forward to ensure a neutral caretaker government to hold next general elections under an impartial election Commission. Sources said that Fazl even assured Nawaz that he would convince President Asif Ali Zardari to step down as a prerequisite for general elections. This meeting gave way to Nawaz’s unscheduled visit to London and a drop scene to the memo controversy came, although the matter still remains with the apex court. According to defence analyst Hassan Askari Rizvi, backdoor channels worked quietly to soften the hard stance taken by Kayani and Nawaz. “This case was floated in the media by the armed forces and later it was none other than Nawaz Sharif who approached the apex court. Though the matter is still pending with the court, both the army and Nawaz have retreated which is self-explanatory,” he said. With the memo making headlines in the media, it was none other than the prime minister, who after finding himself caught in a quagmire, took a bold initiative and opted for a hot pursuit against the army leadership, and when his rhetoric worked, like a true politician he did not hesitate in mincing his words, not once but twice, in a fortnight. On December 16, a day after submit-

ting his response in the apex court on the memo issue, General Kayani held a meeting with Gilani. Following the meeting, a statement issued by the Prime Minister’s House read: “The prime minister and the Army chief also agreed that replies forwarded by the COAS and DG ISI were in response to the notice of the court, through proper channel and in accordance with the rules of business and should not be misconstrued as a standoff between the Army and the government.” However, on December 22 Gilani made two emotional speeches, claiming that conspirators were plotting to bring down the democratic government. He also said that “a state within the state” would not be allowed. He also claimed that the rules of business had been violated in sending replies to the court by the Army chief and the head of the Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI), and that the government had been bypassed in this regard. The following day, Kayani rubbished Gilani’s allegations and a statement by the military said that the army would support the democratic process in the country. However, after a short lull, Gilani once again hit back at Kayani by telling a Chinese online daily on January 9 that General Kayani and General Pasha had violated the rules of business while submitting their responses to the Supreme Court in the memo case without the approval of the competent authority. The government released the contents of Gilani’s interview at a time when Kayani was on an official visit to China. However, Kayani kept his cool and a rejoinder by the Inter-Services Public

Relations (ISPR) once again stated that the chief of army staff and the ISI director general were obliged to narrate facts known to them in their responses to the apex court on the memo issue. “Allegiance to the State and the Constitution is and will always remain a prime consideration for the respondent, who in this case has followed the book,” said the ISPR statement. The top general later held a detailed meeting with Zardari, and a foreign media outlet had claimed that during the meeting, General Kayani had demanded a statement by the government to dispel the impression created by Gilani. On January 25, the prime minister once again retracted his previous version about his tirade against the COAS and DG ISI, saying he wanted to dispel the impression that Kayani and Pasha’s statements had been submitted in the Supreme Court in an unconstitutional manner and in violation of the rules of business. Talking to journalists at Chaklala Air Base before leaving for Davos to attend the World economic Forum meeting, the prime minister said that his statements regarding responses of General Kayani and Lt General Shuja Pasha were relevant in certain situations. “There were a lot of events taking place and there was overlapping by a lot of government functionaries on many issues, and I said in that context,” said the prime minister and added that later when he found out that some of the discrepancies had been made by certain functionaries, he took action against them and those remarks were not unconstitutional or against the rules for the Army chief and the ISI chief.

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06 News Husband, wife burnt to death

Thursday, 2 february, 2012

Pakistan continues to consider India existential threat: US



STaff rEPOrT


A husband and wife were burnt to death in their bedroom due to fire, which erupted due to short-circuit. According to details, Zahid, 30, and his wife Saeeda, residents of Chak No 39/10R Kacha Khu were sleeping in their bedroom when fire erupted due to short circuit due to which both of them were seriously burnt and shifted to Khanewal DHQ Hospital by Rescue 1122 where both of them succumbed to their injuries. In another incident near Chak No 5 Kassi, two people Imran and Sajid were critically injured when two motorcyclists collided. In another incident near Kassi Kohiwala, a tractor and motorcycle collided critically injuring two people Dildar and Haider.


AKISTAN continues to consider India an existential threat despite the two countries taking significant appreciative steps in improving their ties, a top American intelligence official said on Wednesday. “Pakistan and our interests are not always congruent... Their existential threat continues to be India,” Director of National Intelligence James Clapper told lawmakers at a Congressional hearing. Clapper said after a four-year pause, India and Pakistan revived expert-level discussions on conventional and nuclear confidence-building measures (CBM). Indian and Pakistani prime ministers had cordial meetings during the April international cricket championships and the November South Asia Association for Regional Cooperation (SAARC) meeting, he said.

However, despite these appreciative steps in improving ties, India is expected to adopt a go slow policy in its talks with Pakistan on the issue of Siachen Glacier and Sir Creek, Clapper said. “Less progress has been made in discussions over the difficult border issues of Siachen Glacier and Sir Creek, and we judge New Delhi will maintain a go-slow approach in these negotiations,” he said. “Progress expanding trade ties has also helped improve relations, and Islamabad in November publicly committed to a proposal for granting most favored nation trade status to India,” he said. The American intelligence official also said India was unlikely to send troops or heavy equipment to Afghanistan, fearing a backlash from Pakistan. “New Delhi in the near term is unlikely to send troops or heavy equipment to Kabul because it does not want to provoke Pakistan,” Clapper said.

isi assisting Haqqani network WASHINgTON ONliNE

A top Republican Senator has said that the US should base its relationship with Pakistan with the full knowledge that the ISI, Pakistan’s military spy agency, continued to help the Haqqani Network that attacks American troops in Afghanistan. “There is enormous political turmoil in Pakistan, and we have to base our relations on them with the full and certain knowledge that the ISI is assisting the Haqqani Network, who are killing young Americans,” Senator John McCain told the CNN in an interview. “We have to approach our relationship from a much more practical side,” McCain, the Republican presidential nominee in 2008, said in response to a question. McCain’s remarks come a day after President Barack Obama confirmed that American drones regularly targeted terrorists in the Federally Administered Tribal Areas (FATA) of Pakistan.

NATO begins debate on France’s early Afghan exit Leaked report accusing Pakistan of secretly aiding the Taliban also likely to be pondered upon g


NATO defence ministers begin talks today (Thursday) facing dilemmas after France abruptly decided to end its Afghan combat mission early and a leaked report accused Pakistan of secretly aiding the Taliban. The French move is set to dominate two days of talks meant to review progress in the Afghan military transition, discuss ways to keep strong military capabilities in times of austerity and prepare a May summit in Chicago. But allies will now also be confronted with a NATO report, leaked to British media and based on interrogations of detainees, claiming that Islamabad, via its ISI intelligence agency, is “intimately involved” with the insurgency. President Nicolas Sarkozy announced last week that France would end its combat role in Afghanistan in 2013, a year early, after four French toops were killed by a renegade Afghan soldier. He also encouraged all allies to do the same, but officials indicated that NATO would maintain a carefully crafted plan to hand Afghan forces full control of the battlefield by the end of 2014. “We stick to the roadmap that was outlined at the NATO summit in Lisbon in November 2010,” NATO chief Anders Fogh Rasmussen said on Monday. British Prime Minister David Cameron cautioned against abrupt withdrawals. “I don’t want to see some sort of cliff edge in 2014 when all of the remaining troops come out at once,” Cameron told reporters after talks Saturday with Afghan President Hamid Karzai. With 130,000 foreign troops in Afghanistan, one senior NATO military official said changing the calendar would be a logistical headache, noting that there is

$30 billion (22.8 billion euros) worth of military materiel in the mountainous, landlocked nation. “Removing all the equipment and forces we have there will take a long while,” the official told AFP on condition of anonymity. The French decision revived fears that other allies, influenced by war-weary voters, would return home earlier. “We are concerned there might be a rush to the exit with one important ally opting out of the (transition) timeframe,” said an alliance diplomat. “The end of 2014 is realistic. This is the goal we should all aim for.” The report of Pakistani collusion with the Taliban will also cast a shadow over the meeting amid already tense relations with Islamabad. “Pakistan’s manipulation of the Taliban senior leadership continues unabatedly,” the report, based interrogations of more than 4,000 captured Taliban and al Qaeda operatives, was quoted as saying by the BBC. The debate on Afghanistan will likely continue at the Munich Security Conference from Friday to Sunday, an annual gathering of top officials and military experts from around the world in the German city. In Munich, US Defence Secretary Leon Panetta will be joined Saturday by US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and French Foreign Minister Alain Juppe for discussions on transatlantic relations and ties with Russia. Former US secretary of state Henry Kissinger will then lead a debate on US, europe and Asia with eU foreign policy chief Catherine Ashton, Australian Foreign Minister Kevin Rudd and US Senator John McCain. “We don’t want to make it a Chinese-American debate. We also want to see how europe is viewed in Asia,” said veteran German diplomat Wolfgang Ischinger, the event’s chairman.

france hopes to seal Indian jet fighter deal in 9 months PARIS: France is confident that it can sign and seal a firm $12 billion deal to supply India with 126 Rafale fighter jets “within six to nine months”, government spokeswoman Valerie Pecresse said on Wednesday. The Rafale, a modern multi-role jet built by Dassault Aviation, has been selected by India as its preferred next generation interceptor, but details of the immense contract remain to be ironed out. “It needs to be finalised, but the French offer is the most competitive and that has been recognised by our partners,” Pecresse said, after President Nicolas Sarkozy hailed the deal at a cabinet meeting. India on Tuesday announced it had selected the French firm Dassault over the eurofighter consortium for “exclusive negotiations” as the preferred bidder in a contract estimated to be worth $12 billion. If concluded, the contract would mark the first time the jet had found an export partner, despite being in service with the French military since 1998 and having proved itself in several conflicts. afP

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Thursday, 2 february, 2012

‘library of Congress’ only galaxy of knowledge in world PAgE 08

From small to a larger, more elaborate cabinet g

Punjab cabinet likely to swell g CM may shed all additional ministries LAHORE


YaSir haBiB

xPANSION of Punjab Cabinet is likely after PML-N think tanks are scrambling to build an opinion among the party leaders to decentralise dozen of ministries from Punjab Chief Minister Shahbaz Sharif amid successive crisis in health causing hundreds of deaths. With unanimous agreement among the party leaders, Shahbaz Sharif will sooner or later shed scores of ministries, around 18, and the impending situation will lead to broaden the cabinet brining new faces to run the ministries in befitting manner. Though discussion on expanding the cabinet was not put on pedestal during consultative meeting held at Raiwind, but influential circles in the party remained abuzz reviewing CM’s inability to handle health ministry which finally begot PIC suspected medicine scam following dengue crisis and doctor salary dilemma besides IT woes. Sources privy to development told Pakistan Today that the party top brass, looking concerned on CM portfolios’ issue, was also in a mood to iron out the smothering problem by expanding the cabinet. “Most of them are suggesting Sharifs that ministries decentralisation should not be made

matter of ego, instead it should be handled with rational approach. PML-N Secretary Finance Sardar Ayaz Saddiq opined that he would prefer decentralisation of ministries. He said the CM was a human being who had his limits. Nobody could justify all multiple tasks belonging to various ministries, he added. The long-awaited expansion in the Punjab Cabinet came to limelight a number of times during 2011. It was due since February 25 when the PPP ministers were sent home packing; thus putting an end to the coalition government in the province. However, issue stood lingering on due to one reason or the other. Cabinet widening resurfaced after Law Minister Rana Sana Ullah had told the media in second week of June last year that his government was taking 13 new ministers in the cabinet, and members of the Unification Block would not be given any portfolio. He hinted at the possibility that the induction would be made towards the end of June. PML-N Chief Nawaz Sharif had also started directly supervising the induction phase. The prospective candidates were evaluated from their participation in the assembly business besides their performance as MPAs. Potential candidates were Zaeem Qadri from Lahore, Shahzadi Umerzadi Tiwana from Sargodha, Dr Farrukh Javed from Pakpattan, Chaudhry Ayaz Ahmed from Rawalpindi, Mian Yawar Zaman from Okara, Saeed Akbar Khan Niwani from Bhakkar, Chaudhry Shafique from Rahimyar Khan and Rana Afzal from Faisalabad.

According to sources, the constitution after the passage of 18th Amendment, allowed the government to have a maximum of 41 provincial ministers but the cabinet size would not be larger. Presently, the Punjab government is functioning with only nine ministers, some of whom are looking after affairs of more than five departments. The ministers included Ahmad Ali Aulakh (Agriculture, Additional Charge Cooperatives, Livestock & Dairy Development Forestry, Wildlife and Fisheries, Irrigation), Chaudhry Abdul Ghafoor Khan (P & D, Food, Additional Charge of Mines & Minerals), Haji ehsan-ud-Din Qureshi (Auqaf & Religious Affairs, Additional Charge Bait-ul-Maal & Labour), Kamran Michael (Finance, Human Rights & Minorities, Additional Charge Women’s Development), Malik Muhammad Iqbal Channar (Prisons), Malik Nadeem Kamran (Zakat & Ushr), Mian Mujtaba Shuja-ur- Rehman (excise & Taxation, Additional Charge Higher education, Schools education, Literacy, Transport), Rana Sana Ullah Khan (Law & Parliamentary Affairs, Additional Charge Revenue), Sardar Dost Muhammad Khan Khosa (Industries, Commerce & Investment). Punjab Chief Minister Shahbaz Sharif is holding charge of around a dozen ministries including health, communication and works,

Eight more deaths, Health Dept issues guidelines LAHORE STaff rEPOrT

According to a Health Department spokesman, report regarding death of two patients from Jinnah Hospital, three from Services Hospital and one from each LGH, Mayo and Ittefaq Hospitals due to the reaction of the medicines during the last 24 hours has been received while the Health Department also issued guidelines on the treatment of patients. According to the spokesman, 42 patients affected by reaction of PIC medicines have recovered and have been discharged from various hospitals during the last 24 hours thus raising the total number of recovered patients to 415. According to the information received from various hospitals, 50 patients have been discharged from Jinnah Hospital, 271 from Services Hospital, nine from LGH, 24 from Sir Ganga Ram Hospital and 53 from Mayo Hospital. Meanwhile, 330 patients are still admitted in various hospi-

tals including 54 in Jinnah Hospital, 22 in Sir Ganga Ram Hospital, 162 in Services Hospital, eight in Lahore General Hospital and 66 in Mayo Hospital. Moreover, three patients are under treatment in Allied Hospital Faisalabad and four in Shaikh Zayed Hospital Lahore. According to the report two patients each are under treatment in WAPDA Hospital Lahore and Nishtar Hospital Multan. GUIDELINES FOR AFFEcTED PATIENTS: The Punjab Health Department has issued guidelines to hospitals for treatment of the affected Punjab Institute of Cardiology (PIC) patients on Wednesday. The guideline has been issued in the light of test reports of a London-based laboratory that declared Isotab as a reactionary medicine.

‘Very bad, Shahbaz’

S&GAD, tourism, local government and community development, environment, home, special education, energy, information culture and youth affairs, sports, population, social welfare and housing.

NaTO supplies ‘over my dead body’ LAHORE STaff rEPOrT

According to the Punjab Health Department guideline, Folic Acid injections should be given after each 6 hours and then after 12 hours after two days to the patients, who have been affected due to reaction of the contaminated drugs. The Health Department further instructed that steroids should not be given to patients so that their lives could be saved.


Punjab Governor Latif Khosa on Wednesday held Punjab Chief Minister Shahbaz Sharif responsible for the recent killings due to spurious medicines. He visited the Services Hospital to enquire after the patients who got ill due to the PIC medicines and said the deaths were a great tragedy. He also demanded a fair probe into the incident. He said all the provinces had to agree on the formation of drug regulatory authority. He said the federal government could not take any action without the consent of the provinces for establishing the DRA, adding that it was not wise to involve the presidency in every matter. Later, Khosa went to late Arfa Raheem’s house to condole with her parents and offered fateha. He said the whole world appreciated Arfa’s contribution in IT. He said Arfa was the gift of God to Pakistan and she had made the country proud. Khosa announced the creation of Arfa Chair in Punjab University IT department. He also requested for the establishment of Arfa Raheem Award.

NATO supplies can only be restored ‘over our dead bodies’ Jamaat-e-Islami Ameer Munawar Hasan said while talking to reporters at Mansoora on the occasion of Seerat Conference on Wednesday evening. The JI Ameer said the joint session of the parliament fixed for February 3 for taking up the issue had been postponed and nobody seemed to have an issue with this. However, he said, as and when the matter would come up in the parliament, the JI and all like-minded parties would besiege the parliament house and the government would not be allowed to sign the ‘document of slavery’. He condemned the drone attacks that had caused thousands of deaths and questioned the worth of the army chief’s statement that any future violation of the country’s territory would not go unpunished. Hasan said after a decade of warfare, the US and the NATO were on the defensive in Afghanistan and were begging the Taliban for talks. At the same time, there were efforts to induct a government in Islamabad that was not anti-Taliban. In such a situation, restoration of NATO supplies by the country’s rulers would be totally uncalled-for. Hasan said the nation wanted to know why the case of three girls students killed in a musical concert had been hushed up and under what pressure the Punjab Assembly had gone back on its resolution for banning musical concerts in educational institutions. He deplored the large scale killing in the Punjab due to a drug scandal, and said the Punjab

chief minister should have mercy and should appoint a health minister. To a question on memogate, he said the issue had been taken to a high frequency but Nawaz Sharif had now stepped back and the armed forces also seemed to be disinterested and that had badly disappointed the masses. He told another questioner that fair, free and impartial elections were not possible under President Zardari, adding that this was why all parties agreed on setting up of an impartial government acceptable to all, a true election Commission and the preparation of error free, updated electoral rolls. To a question about election alliances, he said that the position would be clear only after the elections were announced. However, he said, with the exception of the Muttahida Qaumi Movement and the Awami National Party, all other parties were in contact with the JI and decision would be taken at the appropriate time.

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08 Lahore

‘Library of Congress’ only galaxy of knowledge in world


23 °C High 11LowC 0

frIDAY 18°C I 11°C



SUnDAY 20°C I 10°C

PrAYEr TIMIngS fajr Sunrise 05:32 06:55

Zuhr 12:17

Asr 15:17

Maghrib 17:38

Isha 19:01


1122 115 130 15 99200081-7 99203226 16 99212111 99211022-29 1139

HoSPITALS MID CITY 37573382-3 SErVICES 99203402-11 MAYo 99211100-9 gEnErAL 35810892-8 SHEIkH ZAID 35865731 SIr gAngA rAM 99200572 UCH 35763573-5 ITTEfAq 35881981-85 CMH 366996168-72 SHoUkAT kHAnUM 35945100 JInnAH 111-809-809 ADIL (DEfEnCE) 36667275 CHILDrEn’S 99230901-3 DEfEnCE nATIonAL HoSPITAL 111-17-18-19


35210834-8 37588649/37535435


111-000-118 1199


117 99201772 1333


Thursday, 2 febuary, 2012

114 111-786-786


regional director pledges to enrich library with all Pakistan literature All and sundry allowed to visit and study LAHORE


YaSir haBiB

N the age of enlightenment and full of knowledge explosion, a library (both physical and virtual) holds central position in every part of the world. Being its reinvigorated and dynamic learning resource, the library is centerpiece for establishing the intellectual community and scholarly enterprise. It offers many of the tools and experiences to be more competitive in the world where sky is limit for improvement. Amongst other, Library of Congress (a research library of the United States with widespread network around the globe) is unique in its nature, size, atmosphere and future goals. Shedding light on the noble mission of Library of Congress (LOC) in Pakistan, Carol L Mitchell (PhD) rendering her services as Regional Director of the LOC, Islamabad, told Pakistan Today in an exclusive interview that being a hub of reliable information, LOC (Islamabad) was open to all the people of Pakistan including youth but their focus was on scholarly people conducting research in particular fields. “She is determined to enrich the LOC (Islamabad) with best collections of local languages, art, culture and music of Pakistan,” she commented accompanied by US consulate General, Lahore Information Officer Leslie Nunez Goodman, in a serene environment of a local hotel. The books of poetry, especially in Pashto (due to its relevance with Afghanistan), Sariaki, Punjabi, Balochi, Sindhi and other regional languages were vibrant treasure and LOC was using all its resources to assimilate them in its precious collection, she added. Looking like a scholar due to her command over the subject, Mrs Carol revealed that Islamabad Office of the Library of Congress and others wanted to provide latest information to United States government and Congress through its active acquisition and cataloguing programme covering Pakistan, Afghanistan and South Asia. She said the LOC housed materials in all formats - monographs, serials, DVDs, videos and all the languages of the region besides general collections, business, humanities/social sciences, Law (US & Int’l), local history/genealogy, newspapers/periodicals, science/technology, international collections and a South Asia Digital Reference Section. “The LOC’s biggest challenge is to intensify liaison with non-government organisations and government agencies to identify and gather material with exchange arrangements so as to preserve all material and provide latest resources to the Congress and the US Government,” she explained. “Since movies reflect social life, pulsating culture, dying and growing trend in society and mindset of the people, so we are multiplying our collecting of movies of Lollywood and Bollywood which have major role in popularising cinema in South Asia.” The LOC has also been collecting

political posters as they represent mind of political parties in Pakistan, she added. “We are also in contact with social media including YouTube, Facebook, flicker, twitter and such other social websites to seek their cooperation in preserving the digital material,” she maintained. “During my visit to Lahore, I also went to Punjab University’s National Library and met my counterpart to exchange views on enhancing the collection and digitalising the material. Meanwhile, we have been dealing with famous publishers including Vanguard, Oxford and others to enrich the LOC,” she added. Basking into comfort, she continued that the office also contributed global research by collecting research books, serials, videos, and sound recordings from over 50 research libraries in the United States, Canada, and europe under the Cooperative Acquisitions Programme (CAP). Sitting relaxed and wearing simple attire, she traced back to its history in Pakistan, saying the Library of Congress put its first step in the country 50 years ago and it made its debut in Karachi in 1962. Later, it was shifted to Islamabad to improve its performance, she added. When asked about future of the library, she said it must be viewed with a new perspective and understanding if it was to maintain its potential in adding value to the advancement of research and academic mission. Rather than threatening the traditional concept of the library, the integration of new information technology has actually become the catalyst that transforms the library into a more vital and critical intellectual center of life,” she argued. “With the emergence and integration of information technology, some people predicted that the library would become obsolete. Others asserted that the virtual library would replace the physical library. While information technology has not replaced print media, and is not expected to do so in the foreseeable future, it has nonetheless had an astonishing and quite unanticipated impact on the role of the library. Contrary to the predictions of diminishing use and eventual obsolescence of libraries, its usage has expanded dramatically. This increase is particularly common at libraries and institutions that have worked with their architects and planners to anticipate the full impact of the integration of new information technologies throughout their facilities,” she added. About the Library of Congress in Washington DC, she said it was

araBiC CalligraPHy

one of the most famous and influential libraries in the world. “It has more than 30,000,000 catalogued books in 470 languages. It has also the largest rare book collection,” she averred. Mrs Carol said it was also the official research arm of the Congress. The library was founded in 18th century. US former President Thomas Jefferson gave very large collection to the LOC on philosophy and literature, he added. She said that the library’s primary mission was researching inquiries made by members of Congress through the Congressional Research Service. “Although it is open to the public at large, only library employees, Members of Congress, Supreme Court justices and other highranking government officials may check out such books,” she said. The LOC is unique due to acquiring world digital library, special formats and genre, American folk life center, geography and map, manuscript, microform, motion picture and television, music and performing arts, prints and photographs, rare book and special collections, recorded sound and veterans’ history. She also talked about children corners to create interest of teenagers in the Library of Congress for establishing the message that it belonged to everyone.

lEttEr to tasEEr ii

intErnational Book Fair 2012


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DATE AnD TIME: JUnE 1, 2012, 4PM To 6PM VEnUE: HAST-o-nEEST CEnTEr CALLIgrAPHY CLASSES are on-going, interested students can enroll throughout the year. The duration of one module is three months. There are four modules of learning calligraphyt: primary, secondary, advanced and higher. The course includes traditional pen and traditional paper making.

DATE: JAn 23 – fEB 23, 2012 VEnUE: THE DrAwIng rooM ArT gALLErY rashid rana, naazish Ataullah, Ayesha Jatoi, Mudassar Manzoor, rM naeem, Sadaf naeem, Irfan Hasan, Adeel Us Zafar and others display their art in an effort to capture past.

DATE AnD TIME: fEB 3 To 7, 10AM To 10PM VEnUE: ExPo CEnTrE, JoHAr Town get expensive international books at cheap prices! An exciting place to take your kids to and to cultivate a love of books in their hearts.

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Thursday, 2 febuary, 2012

Lahore 09

Only government likes high fuel prices LAHORE


Transporters jack up fares by 30% despite running vehicles on Cng g Cargo rates for 20-ft and 40-ft containers go up by 10-15% g Industrial, agricultural associations demand reversal of fuel prices, warn of protests g

iMraN adNaN

eSPITe the fact that most public transport vehicles in the country are running on CNG fuel, public transporters have increased transport fares by over 30 percent on the pretext of increased petroleum prices. As the Oil and Gas Regulatory Authority (OGRA) announced a 3 to 6 percent increase in the petroleum products’ prices from Wednesday, the public transporters in the provincial capital raised fares by Rs 4-5 per stop. Now the minimum fare in the city is hovering between Rs 18 and Rs 20 per stop. Wednesday witnessed numerous verbal scuffles between commuters and transporters. A perturbed middle-aged man, arguing with a bus conductor, cursed the country’s rulers. “No one in the country is thinking about the issues of the common man. The government announces price increase, and shopkeepers and transporters pass it on to the general public without considering how it is making its ends meet,” he said. cOSTLY cARGO: Similarly, goods transporters have raised cargo shipping charges by 10 to 15 percent. The transporters at Lahore Dry Port and the Badami Bagh Truck Stand were seen demanding Rs 35,000 to Rs 39,000 for a 20-foot container and Rs 45,000 to Rs 52,000 for a 40-foot container from Lahore to Karachi. The transporters said that a 40-foot con-

tainer was being booked from Karachi to Lahore at a price between Rs 85,000 and Rs 130,000 depending on the weight and the availability of vehicles. The transporters and businessmen, along with the general public, asked the government to reverse the price increase, warning that they would start a countrywide agitation against the government if petroleum prices remained high. Speaking to Pakistan Today, Pakistan Goods Transporters Association (PGTA) General Secretary Nabeel Mahmood Tariq said the body had called emergency meetings at all stations to formulate a strategy against the unprecedented petroleum prices. He said that business activity had already been marred due to power and gas shortages, and that such decisions were persuading the people to rise against the government’s unjust policies. He said that cargo shipping prices from Lahore to Karachi had increased from Rs 4,000 to Rs 5,000 due to the exorbitant increase in diesel price, which would not only hurt the domestic exports but also affect the transporters’ business. BUSINESS cOMMUNITY REAcTS: Businessmen and traders also condemned the surge in petroleum prices and asked the government to reverse its decision. The Lahore Chamber of Commerce and Indus-

try (LCCI), Pakistan Industrial and Traders Associations Front (PIAF), Auto Parts Manufacturers and exporters’ Association (APMeA) and Lahore Township Industries Association (LTIA) said the jacked up prices would further paralyse the country’s industries, which were already struggling for survival due to energy crisis. In a joint statement, LCCI President Irfan Qaiser Sheikh, Senior Vice President Kashif Younis Meher and Vice President Saeeda Nazar said the fresh increase in petroleum prices would hit hard both the industrial and agriculture sectors besides pushing the inflation rate further in the country. They said the entire industrial sector was already facing multiple internal and external challenges, and the recent increase would further aggravate the economic situation. They said that agriculture sector was Pakistan’s engine of growth and the increase in diesel prices would raise the agricultural costs, as high speed diesel was being used in tractors, tube-wells, harvesters, thrashers and other agricultural machinery. They said that the cost of thermal power generation by the private sector would also go up. The LCCI office bearers said the government was relying too much on thermal power production, and the increase in petroleum prices would send electricity rates

LDA has a master plan LAHORE STaff rEPOrT

The Lahore Development Authority (LDA) has presented the Integrated Master Plan of Lahore 2021, to guide the expansion of provincial metropolis, keeping in view futuristic demands, LDA Chief Metropolitan Planner (CMP) Waseem Ahmed Khan said on Wednesday. The CMP was briefing to a group of 40 probationary officers of the District Management Group who visited the LDA office, Johar Town in connection with the 34th specialised training programme. The DMG officers were briefed about the organisation, functions, performance and future planning of the LDA Urban Development Wing, Water and Sanitation Agency (WASA) as well as the Traffic engineering and Transport Planning Agency (TePA) for the development of infrastructure in Lahore. The CMP said that the LDA had forwarded recommendations in all sectors of urban planning, including land development, housing, transportation, community facilities, public utilities, infrastructure, environment and institutional framework. He said that the master plan has recommended the future expansion and development of Lahore to the south of Hadyara drain and in light of the master plan recommendation, the LDA had already floated three housing schemes in the area. The most significant of these schemes was the LDA City, with an area of 45,000 Kanal, on Ferozepur road near Kahna Nau. The LDA has also approved 24 Private Housing Scheme in this area, the CMP added. Waseem said that to lower the pressure on existing Central Business District on Mall Road, the master plan has pro-

posed two sites for establishing commercial centres in the city. He informed about the planned construction of an IT Tower, superstore, five-star hotel, bank square, health club, hospital, mosque, recreation area, parking and mini golf club in the area. To curb migration to Lahore, the master plan has recommended that settlements falling at the radius of 75 kilometres from Lahore may be upgraded and developed as Satellite Town with specialised facilities, the CMP added. Settlements that can be upgraded for this purpose include Shiekhupura, Sharakpur, Mureedke, Raiwind, Bhaipheru, Pattoki and Kasur, he said. TePA engineering Director Khalid Alvi said that TePA had conserved over 200 kilometres of ‘Right of Way’ of the structural plan roads in the South of Lahore, in accordance with the master plan 2021, saving the Punjab government an expenditure of approximately Rs 20 billion on account of acquisition of land otherwise. He said that the TePA was executing several projects for the improvement of roads in the city, including the re-modelling of the Model Town Link Road, rehabilitation of the Maulana Shabbir Usmani Road and re-modelling of the Main Boulevard Garden Town from Kalma Chowk to New Campus Canal Crossing. Speaking at the occasion, WASA Planning Director Abdul Qadeer said that to ensure proper management of the systems, WASA Lahore has prepared its 6-year Business Plan with the assistance of JICA and the Urban Unit. The business plan has been prepared to incorporate a road map to achieve financial sustainability of WASA. The visiting DMG probationers thanked the LDA officers for a comprehensive briefing about the development of Lahore.

Cold winds, rain return LAHORE STaff rEPOrT

The temperature in the provincial metropolis is likely to dip with a few rain sprinkles in some parts of city today (Thursday). Overall cold and dry weather is expected in Punjab’s capital and sky would remain partially covered with clouds. Moreover chilly winds would take the city in their grip in the coming days, heralding more showers over the weekend. Metrological Office has predicted the beginning of a new cold wave in Lahore since a new weather system has entered the country through western parts of Balochistan. According to the predictions, the new system would cause rain and snowfall in western parts of the country and the wave would persist for three to four days. Chief Metrologist Riaz Khan said scattered rain and snowfall were expected over the hills in Balochistan, KPK, Punjab, northern area and Kashmir. He said low pressure winds had gripped the western borders of country and would spread further in the coming days. He said the temperatures would fall in many areas due to the cold winds for the next week.

26th Int’l book fair launched LAHORE STaff rEPOrT

The 26th annual international book fair will be launched by Punjab Chief Minister Shahbaz Sharif from February 3-7. It will be the largest event of its kind in Pakistan and will feature publishers from across Pakistan as well as the United States, United Kingdom, Singapore, Turkey, Germany and India. On this occasion Deutsche Welle will launch their official Urdu website for their Urdu service. A delegation of the Afro-Asian book council will be attending the book fair to discuss issues the South Asian publishing industry is facing.

to new highs. They said the LCCI had been asking relevant government departments to promote alternative fuels because the country’s trade deficit was widening rapidly due to large oil imports, but the government has not taken a single step in this regard. PIAF Chairman Sohail Lashari, APMeA Chairman Tahir Javed Malik and LTIA Chairman Iftikhar Bashir Chaudhry called the price hike an “anti-industry and anti-masses decision”. The government did not bother to reduce petroleum prices when they fell in the international market, and earned billion rupees in a show of sheer injustice, they said. They said the government should cut down its luxurious expenditures and curtail taxes and duties on petroleum. They asked Prime Minister Yousaf Raza Gilani to immediately withdraw the increase in petroleum prices, and also ensure the representation of the business community in price-regulatory bodies such as OGRA and the National electric Power Regulatory Authority (NePRA). FARMERS AGITATED: The Farmers Associates Pakistan (FAP) has convened a meeting of stakeholders on Friday to prepare a counter-strategy against the government’s “anti-growers policies”, and to launch a “Kisan (farmer’s) rally” towards Islamabad. FAP President Dr Tariq Bucha told Pakistan Today that all stakeholders

representing the farming sector will participate in the meeting. He said the new increase in diesel prices had put an extra burden of Rs 18 billion on the agricultural sector. He said diesel was used for irrigation and running tractors and other agricultural machinery. He said that over four billion litres of diesel was used by the farmers annually. Kisan Board Pakistan (KBP) Central President Sardar Zafar Hussain and General Secretary Malik Muhammad Ramzan Rohari termed the increase in petroleum prices “a cruel step by the government”. They said the government, after hitting the farmers hard by increasing electricity and gas prices, had now stabbed them in the back by raising diesel prices. Agri Forum Pakistan Chairman Muhammad Ibrahim Mughal urged the government to import oil from Iran in exchange for rice and citrus to save precious foreign exchange and to provide cheaper fuel to the Pakistani consumers. He said that Pakistan would be able to deliver diesel at a rate of Rs 75 per litre, instead of the present rate of Rs 104 per litre. He said that India was important a large fraction of its diesel requirement from Iran, and that Pakistan should also do the same. He said India was providing diesel at Rs 41, which equals Rs 74 in Pakistan.

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10 Lahore

Thursday, 2 febuary, 2012

YDA demands new equipment for hospital LAHORE STaff rEPOrT

The Lady Willingdon Hospital has yet to install a Cardiotocography (CTG) machine and new operation tables. At present, the emergency theatre only contains two out of the required six operation tables, endangering the lives of pregnant patients and children. The Young Doctors Association officers have demanded the Punjab Chief Minister Shahbaz Sharif to get the equipment installed.

MAo College holds qirat & naat contest LAHORE STaff rEPOrT

The Islamic Society of Muhammedan Anglo-Oriental College (MAO) arranged a Qirat and Naat competition on Wednesday. Students recited various Quranic verses and paid tributes to the glory of the Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) in the naats. College Principal Dr Farhan Abadat Khan said the life of the Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) had been a blessing for humanity as he was a role model for the world. He said the MAO College administration would support the students to participate in the provincial level competitions as well.

TiNY dEVOTEE: little ali taps his feet to the beat of the ‘dhol’ during Mian Mir’s urs celebrations. MURTaZa aLI

PMA protest the delay of DrA LAHORE STaff rEPOrT

Pakistan Medical Association officers have strongly protested against the delay in establishing the Drug Regulatory Authority (DRA). They said that in the last 24 days the provincial and federal governments had been involved in blame games instead of taking concrete steps to rectify the situation. PMA further said the formation of a provincial regulatory authority was also mandatory in order to control the quality and prices of medicines of the pharmaceutical industry (national & multinational) in the province. The organisation has demanded the Prime Minister and Punjab Chief Minister to hold a collective meeting for the establishment of the DRA. It also appealed to patients who had been treated at the Punjab Institute of Cardiology not to leave their medicines because of drug reaction fears as some medicines were required for their heart conditions.

gCU wins best library award LAHORE STaff rEPOrT

The Government College University (GCU) has won the best library award for 2012 and received 224 latest key publications from the International Society for Science and Religion (ISSR), United Kingdom. GCU Vice Chancellor Prof Dr Khaleeq-ur-Rahman and aculty of Science and Technology Dean Prof Dr Ikramul Haq have expressed their pleasure with the GCU Library as it now stands among the top 150 institutions of the world to have received this award. The praise for the award has been directed at GCU’s administration for outstanding development of the library, especially the work of GCU Chief Librarian Abdul Waheed, who is counted as among of the most educated library specialists in South Asia.



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Petition of violation filed against CM LAHORE STaff rEPOrT

Justice Umar Ata Bandial of the Lahore High Court on Wednesday ordered the Punjab chief Secretary (PCS) to respond within two weeks to a petition that is questioning the performance of the Health Ministry under Chief Minister (CM) Shahbaz Sharif, who is accused of holding 18 ministries in violation of the rules. Petitioner lawyer Noshab Khan has included the CM, chief secretary and the principle secretary to the CM in the petition. The petitioner accused the CM of being responsible for the failure of health ministry in effectively dealing with the crisis of spurious medicines given from the Punjab Institute of Cardiology (PIC), from which 100 patients had died in the last month alone. He added that the government had failed to control the dengue epidemic and now the drug reaction threat was also out of its control. Khan said the CM had violated the Punjab Government Rules of Business 1974 by taking control of the Ministries Of Health, Communication & Works, Services And General Administration Department, Tourism, Local Government, Community Development, environment, Home, Special education, energy, Food, Information, Culture And Youth Affairs, Sports, Population, Social Welfare And Housing. The petitioner said the CM had not appointed any ministers for the 18 ministries, retaining them himself. He requested the court to ask the CM to re-

linquish all portfolios and appoint a health minister. ISSUE OF STAY PETITION FILED FOR SENATE ELEcTIONS: Lahore High Court Chief Justice (CJ) Azmat Saeed on Wednesday postponed a petition to February 7 by lawyer Feroze Shah Gilani for a stay order in the upcoming Senate elections. The petitioner’s counsel argued that elections of National Assemblies and provincial assemblies were not transparent as unverified voter lists formed the basis of the elections and should be discontinued in the Senate elections. He asked why the Supreme Court had stopped the election commission from holding by-elections of national and provincial assemblies, scheduled for February 20. The counsel said that elections for vacant seats of the Senate would be unconstitutional, and requested the court to declare the coming Senate elections illegal. He said the National Database and Registration Authority (NADRA) informed the Supreme Court in July 2011 that there were 37,185,998 unverified voters and therefore, the last elections were not in accordance with Article 28(3) of the constitution. LHc ISSUES ARREST WARRANTS FOR SRI LANKAN TEAM ATTAcKERS: A Lahore High Court division bench on Wednesday issued non-bailable arrest warrants of four people accused of an attack on the Sri Lankan cricket team. The division bench passed the orders on petitions filed by the Punjab government seeking bail cancellations of Obaidullah, Muhammad Ishfaq, Amanullah and Obaidur Rehman. The police informed the court that the accused could not be arrested as they had changed their residences.

Thieves caught with 16,000 litre oil LAHORE aPP

Punjab Highway Patrol arrested two dacoits and recovered 16,000 liter crud oil worth Rs 1,550,000 from them. The arrested Fateh Mohammad and Malik Shabbir were handed over to the police.

‘fired, all 10 of you!’ LAHORE STaff rEPOrT

Ten doctors of Jinnah Hospital Lahore, including the former MS were suspended after an enquiry found them to be guilty. Per details, thousands of MRI injections were purchased, many of which were expired, at the cost of the exchequer. The CM had ordered an enquiry into the matter which concluded with suspension of 10 doctors. The suspended doctors include former MS of the hospital, two professors, pharmacist and store keeper. The hospital administration had purchased 3,000 MRI injections last year but nearly 2000 of them were expired and the hospital authority had failed to replace them. Interestingly, the suspension came on the very day the CM publicly announced the lab test results of the drugs distributed by the PIC.

Photojournalists capture the soft side A five-day photo exhibition displaying pictures on the theme of ‘Soft Image of Pakistan’ kicked off in Alhamra Art Gallery on Wednesday. The exhibition, arranged under the aegis of Pakistan Association of Photo Journalists, is third national level photo exhibition of the association. “The photos on different cultural themes are on display with the intention to promote peace, harmony and the positive image of the country,” the organisers said during the inaugural ceremony. Still shots of some 900 photographers from across the country are being showcased in the event and the Art Gallery is packed to its maximum limit of displaying photos. The organisers decided to put the works of the photographers on display in three different rounds. On its first day, female members of Punjab Assembly belonging to PML-N visited the exhibition. Zamurd Yasmeen, Arifa Khalid, Kiran Dar and Nighat Nasir appreciated the idea of photo journalists to depict a soft image of country through exhibition. The photo exhibition will end on February 5.

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Thursday, 2 february, 2012

Editor’s mail 11

flight safety violations If reports and letter by a passenger, which has been published by all newspapers of Pakistan that a local airline, regulated and permitted by CAA had installed passenger seats obstructing access to emergency exit door of an aircraft, operating schedule commercial passenger flights are true, then DG CAA, Director Flight Safety Standards and Director Aeronautical Inspection Division and those inspectors assigned to carry

In defence of CM Punjab out safety inspections should be sacked and their licenses cancelled for life. This is a very serious flight safety violation and the very purpose for creation of CAA stands nullified if such naked violations are occurring, which are visible to naked eye. PIA flights to eU airports were suspended from operation for much minor violations. All those responsible for overlooking this gross violation and giving this aircraft

and the airline permission for grant of AOC have no business to be involved with aviation. It is our airports that have the highest incidences of bird hits, because the CAA failed to assert its authority to prevent mushrooming of residential societies, marriage halls etc in the sterile zone surrounding our major airports located in Karachi, Lahore, Islamabad, Peshawar and Multan. Such violations only give credence

to rumours that bribery and corruption are rampant in CAA. All those who are on the board of governors, including chairman and concerned secretary should face criminal charges for this criminal negligence that could have resulted in deaths of hundreds, if this aircraft had ever to face an emergency evacuation. GULL ZAMAN Peshawar

nATo supplies There are reports of the NATO supply route being opened from Pakistan’s side this month. Americans have been giving the impression that this halting of Nato containers from Pakistan was not impacting its supply or affecting the cost that is much cheaper than the Northern Distribution Network (NDN). The Central Asian states host the NDN that enables movement of NATO supplies and troops to Afghanistan. According to US estimates, 55 percent of non-lethal cargo at present goes through NDN using road and rail network. The long distance, the unfriendly terrain, the environment and roads condition take the US to pay six times more than the cost it spends while using the Pakistan route. Though the plans are underway to further increase the NDN capacity, yet it is facing a lot many hurdles which are not likely to be overcome. Presently the cargo passing through Pakistan only is subject to terrorist attacks. However, when lethal cargo is added to the traffic on NDN routes, it is definitely going to invite the wrath of the terrorists much to the chagrin of Central Asian leaders. Hence, the NDN just cannot replace Pakistani route for sustaining NATO forces in Afghanistan. ESCHMALL SARDAR Peshawar

Safety precautions As many as 11 miners succumbed inside a mine near Abbottabad where the entrance was blocked by a big boulder. The rescue operation, hampered by nonavailability of earthmoving machinery, took 48 eight hours and this time was enough for stranded miners to lose their lives. Miners’ security and lack of appropriate rescue machinery has always remained a critical issue in our country. The miners, people who do mucking inside mines, are one of the poorest and uneducated segments of our society. Unaware of security measures to be adopted inside mines, they work hard for meagre sum of money, just to keep their bones and flesh together, with great perils encompassing their lives. Mines Act, promulgated in 1923, need various modification and onus must be put upon mine owners to provide security apparatus to miners to ensure their safety. Recently, the rescue operations carried out in Brazil indicate how human lives are respected in other countries. The 11 poor miners who lost lives due to mine collapse and delayed rescue activities show how inhumane we are. The government should pay reasonable monetary compensation to the families of these deceased miners. IFTIKHAR MIRZA Islamabad

Difference in attitude I read in a newspaper that a mass wedding was held in Karachi where 50 couples married. The event was organised at the YMCA Ground by the Upleta Memon Association and Welfare Trust. Karachi Commissioner Roshan Ali Shaikh attended the mass wedding ceremony on behalf of President Asif Ali Zardari and announced that the president would bear all the expenses of the ceremony. Also in the newspaper I read that in Indian city a mass wedding was organised by a local politician and in this wedding ceremony 1000 couples get married. The local politician who organised the event is an MLA and he also got married in this mass wedding. This shows that in Pakistan high profile personalities and politicians neither go to these events nor they bear the expenses. MUBASHIR MAHMOOD Karachi

These days some PPP stalwarts are targeting unfairly CM Punjab for deaths due to faulty or expired medicines supplied by dubious dealers. The CM Punjab has been trying his level best to run affairs of 100 million people of Pakistan but he is not an angel but a human being who in spite his best efforts to run the affairs honestly and efficiently is blamed by vested interests. How can he be held responsible for dishonesty of some suppliers when he personally cannot humanly ensure that nobody plays dirty? His record of rehabilitating kidney centres for poor masses and in setting up of model schools for poor masses are not small matters to be ignored by his fault finders. Unfortunately, when the top man of the country is known for mega scams how can we ensure that every person in Punjab would work honestly? There is a climate of corruption and poor CM has tried is level best to set the matters right. How about Rs 10 billion scam in Sindh education department about ghost teachers which is not highlighted by PPP leaders? DR MUHAMMAD YAQOOB BHATTI Lahore

Democracy at work but…

To the safer shores, then After an uneventful Memogate saga, the former ambassador, Mr Husain Haqqani has left Pakistan for a Gulf country from where he is expected to fly to the United States. This was only possible after the only witness and key evidence holder Mr Mansoor Ijaz failed to appear before the court or

killer drugs For the past two weeks, few anchors and politicians have been spreading venom and playing politics on the death of over 100 innocent citizens of Pakistan. What concrete positive purpose is served by such talk shows other than exposing their biases and hidden agendas? It is about time that the electronic media stopped sensationalising and produce for their viewers analysis based on professional opinion in the field related to the issue, so that the public is made aware of facts, instead of what they have been doing. Private media television channels which earn billions from advertisements and sponsorships have helped society through their investigative reporting instead of relying on fantasy. Few of these anchors, who had been calling for the scalp of CM Punjab, should now, by the same logic, call for the scalp of the provincial minister for health where the factory is located, but will they? SYED JAWAID HUSSAIN Multan

Petrol bombs After hurling petrol bombs for several months together, the federal government has resorted to throwing of homemade drones on the people hitting them very hard indeed. Such high increase in petrol and diesel prices and levy of surcharge on CNG has not only increased financial burden on those using petrol, diesel or CNG in their vehicles but also set the vicious circle of price-hike of almost every item, in particular daily use

the commission even though he was offered countless assurances of security. The situation only details how fragile an investigation process can be if some big fish are involved. ALI ANJUM Lahore

As Republican presidential candidates are increasing the rhetoric against Obama, the American administration seems to be confused in its response. This is what one can conceive from the American actions in the Af-Pak region. What forced Obama to accept on a public chatting social network forum that it’s

American drones which are striking on militants in the Pakistan’ tribal areas! Yes, we all know these are American drones, but it was never acknowledged for legal reasons as the US and Pakistan are officially not at war with each other. There is no doubt that drones have been quite effective in eliminating scores of infamous militants but at the same time trigger-happy CIA operators were careless in avoiding civilian causalities. Such an open claim by the US president will put the Pakistan government on defensive to either force the US to stop the attacks or strike back on the drones – apparently both are impossible tasks but good enough to further damage the present government’ credibility in the eyes of its own people. This chest thumping policeman of the world is sitting next to the very people it is targeting in Pakistan’ tribal areas. The American and Taliban talks are getting underway in Qatar (though at low level representation); strangely both Afghan and Pakistani governments are out of these talks. Apparently, the US administration is looking for a breakthrough in Afghanistan prior to the presidential elections. But solo flights – whether in form of drones or isolated talks with Taliban – are not going to end the conflict any time soon. It’s regrettable that the Americans will leave the region with a mess behind manifold in gravity as compared to their exit in 1989. Peace in the region will remain an illusion, especially when the US is going to leave a triumphant group in Afghanistan, ready to strike on its foes. MASOOD KHAN Jubail, Saudi Arabia

gifted to her by her mother-in-law to Major Shafqat Baloch for defending Lahore. In the unit there were a lot of stories of unit’s performance under Brig Nowsherwan Khan of 1948 Kashmir battle. There was also a story of Subedar Lal Khan, who resigned in 1948 at Abbotabad but the story was still fresh in the minds of soldiers in 1965. Subedar Lal Khan was a very honourable and brave JCO, who had fought well during the Second World War and was outstanding in all professional

events including drill. In couple of years he was to be promoted as Subedar Major. One fine morning as duty JCO he was to mount the guard at unit quarter guard. While inspecting the guard he missed his steps and could not keep in step with the guard commander and NCO. After the guard mounting, he came straight to the Adjutant’s office, took off his cross belt, saluted and said, “Sir, I hereby resign my commission because I was outsmarted by the guard commander this morning.” All efforts by the officers and SM

articles. Quite obviously, the commuters will be paying more for journey by buses, wagons or rickshaws. Cutting the long sad story short, the latest three-drone attack by the federal government across the board on the people has necessitated the need for hectic search for technological innovations in fuel saving. DANIYAL A NAJMI Lahore

Banning concerts After the stampede tragedy at the Alhamra Cultural Complex, the Punjab government has banned concerts in educational institutes through a resolution. Personally, I am in favour of this ban but in democracy majority is the power. If majority of the youth wants this, Punjab government should reverse this controversial resolution. This shows non-seriousness and casual attitude of our parliamentarians who passed this resolution without finding any facts and figures. In stead of punishing the culprits, Punjab assembly banned any entertainment event in the province. What an amazing way to solve a problem! ZAHID RASHID Rawalakot, Azad Kashmir

Double dealing

The democracy is indeed at work in the country but unfortunately our balky and boisterous bureaucracy in our public sector organisations is not working with due democratic sense, thanks to decade– long dictatorial legacy and mindset which are a real handicap in their working. They are designed to resonate with each other. They are busy in wasting time and other resources. They don’t have their mission statements and vision. “Where there is no vision, the people perish; but he that keepeth the law, happy is he.” Let’s develop vision and promote the rule of law so as to perpetuate this country and its countrymen. HASHIM ABRO Islamabad

The bleak situation The metropolitan city of Karachi is facing target killings again. Terror is increasing day by day in the heart of innocent people. They have to think hard before going out. Their life is in danger. I hope for the best and pray to Allah to give tolerance and understanding to innocent people’s families who have lost their loved ones in target killing. MUHAMMAD ADEEL Karachi

Drug regulatory authority Due to lack of rule of law, everything is possible in the country. Multinational and local pharmaceutical companies are engaged in minting money. There is no drug regularity authority in the country. The government has no proper check and control on these companies. Local companies pay heavy fee for registration of drug and subsequently get approval from labs. For instance, Glaxo is a multinational company operating in Pakistan. Zantac is a product of Glaxo which is used for the treatment of ulcer. Its price in Pakistan is Rs 88 per strip (10 tabs) whereas Zantac’s price in India is only Rs 5 (10 tabs). There is a clear price discrimination between the two countries. A proper medicine saves one life whereas a spurious drug becomes a threat to life. I think a proper drug regularity authority should be created in the country. By taking concrete measures, we can save ourselves from incidents like the one that happened at the PIC. TARIQ HUSAIN KHAN Karachi

when to resign I joined the Pakistan Army in 1963. Those were good days; the army had pride and honour. The officers mostly travelled to office on bicycles, only a few officers had private cars. The staff cars were used only for official duty. Any senior officer passed over used to resign. I joined 17 Punjab; the same from which Raja Aziz Bhatti got Nishan-eHaider and Shafqat Baloch SJ for defending Hudiara in 1965.The nation was so proud of the army that a widow from Karachi sent her family gold necklace

failed to convince him not to resign as it was not such a big issue. But Sub Lal Khan stood firm and said if I continue to serve I shall not be able to face the NCO as well as my family. The only honourable thing for me is to go home with my honour and dignity. This is the army I grew up with and fought two wars with India. There were no NROs. An officer must know when to quit honourably. LT COL (retd) M SHAHBAZ THUTHAAL Lahore

Send your letters to: Letters to Editor, Pakistan Today, 4-Shaarey Fatima Jinnah, Lahore, Pakistan. Fax: +92-42-36298302. E-mail: Letters should be addressed to Pakistan Today exclusively.

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12 Comment Price hikes Someone’s got to do it


ince the secular trend of all prices, not just those of petroleum products, is always going to be sloping upwards, news flashes of “historic high” for a new rate, though correct factually, lead one to believe that most new prices are not historic highs. That is incorrect. On the price hike itself: we have seen, since the past several days, some debate, not only in the press but also on the floor of parliament, that too within the treasury benches, on the roles of the petroleum ministry and Ogra. The issue started when the petroleum minister revealed, in advance, the upcoming price hike. Many, most notably the law minister and then the premier himself, took exception to this. The notification of new prices is the job of the regulatory body, not the petroleum minister, they said. The minister’s revelation allowed hoarders to do their thing. Neoclassical economics is, after all, the management of expectations; managing information is critical there. Far be it from the newspaper demanding anything less than full disclosure but in this particular case, the notification body is clearly stipulated and the repercussions of premature disclosure are not too hard to imagine. The decision itself, however, is a different matter. Ogra is to regulate the sector and the ministry to lay out policy but pricing itself can be fought out over. except, when it comes to keeping prices down and footing the bill for the public’s welfare. Then, it becomes the ownership of the finance ministry. Whether the exchequer can afford it or not is the Q-block’s call in Islamabad, not the magnanimity of either Ogra or the petroleum ministry. In this particular case, for instance, both the petroleum ministry and Ogra had recommended tweaking the petroleum levy to keep the price at the same level; Finance, however, rejected the proposal. Domestic oil prices should reflect international prices. There is a lag with which those prices affect us, yes, but affect us they must. It is only when the Finance Division tries to cover the fiscal deficit through an increase in petroleum levy or cess that we should voice concerns. Petroleum price hikes affect millions across the country. But a rationalisation of prices, not just those of oil but also power tariffs, is the mature approach to go about the issue. Footing the bill here will leave nothing for elsewhere.

karachi’s unending woes A new spate of attacks


he interior minister had been rewarded with a doctorate by Karachi University for restoring peace in the city. The Rangers had been given the extra powers they had demanded to curb the terrorist activities. The Karachiites, however, are now facing a new surge of terrorist attacks. During the last nine days, three cell phone franchises have been attacked by unknown terrorists, killing four and wounding several employees and customers. By Tuesday night, ten persons had fallen victim to terrorism within twenty four hours. The latest attack on a Telenor franchise was carried out with an uncanny efficiency within 30 seconds. Most of the attacks reveal a fairly high level of expertise on the part of the terrorists who appear to be steps ahead of the CID. earlier on January 7, the crime investigation department had announced that they had killed the chief of the TTP’s Balochistan chapter and arrested one of his accomplices who according to the department had been involved in attacks on cellphone franchises. The claim was exposed as hollow when another franchise was attacked on Tuesday. The police has acquired the CCTV footage of the incident. One cannot predict with confidence that with its present level efficiency, the CID alone would be able to trace out the criminals. As the terrorists have countrywide networks, and frequently shift operatives from one province to another, there is a need for the pooling of real time intelligence from all major agencies in the country. This should be put at the disposal of a high level body comprising elements drawn from all these agencies to combat terrorism in the mega city. Reacting to the new spurt of target killings, Altaf Hussain has claimed that the city is being handed over to the terrorists under a conspiracy. He has called on the Karachiites to come forward to guard their streets, shops and workplaces against terrorists instead of solely depending on the police. It would have been understandable if the message which can only cause despondency had come from an opposition leader. Coming as it does from the MQM chief this shows that while his party is keen to have a share in power, it is not willing to take responsibility for the acts of omission and commission by the government of which it is a part.

Dedicated to the legacy of the late Hameed Nizami

Arif Nizami Editor

Lahore – Ph: 042-36298305-10 Fax: 042-36298302 Karachi – Ph: 021-34330811-3 Fax: 021-34330900 Islamabad – Ph: 051-2287414-6 Fax: 051-2287417 Web: Email:

Thursday, 2 february, 2012

Our dogged democracy Still alive. Still kicking

By Nazir Naji


ixteen days from today, it’ll be exactly four years since our last general elections were conducted. These four years have not been easy for the detractors of democracy. But they haven’t been easy for the supporters of democracy and the public either. The detractors wished to see the democratic setup wrapped up as soon as possible. Not a year had passed after the elections when calls to the army to step in started to be issued and it was predicted again and again that the incumbents’ days were numbered. President Zardari was especially targeted. Those trying to undermine democracy thought that if they labelled a democratically elected government as ‘Zardari’s government’, they could incite anti-democracy sentiment in the public more effectively. This strategy rested on the fact that a smear campaign has been run since long against the president. He has been embroiled in many long drawn out court cases. He has been acquitted in many a case but his critics have focussed exclusively on the ones sub-judice. Asif Ali Zardari spent 9 precious years of his life behind bars. When he was made president, it was a new beginning for him. Not only did he have to look after the party but he had to look after democracy and take the opposition along as well; all while facing this relentless slander. But most importantly, he had to make sure that the army didn’t fall prey to the anti-democracy cheerleaders shouting and coaxing from the sidelines. While the president’s detractors are a dime-a-dozen, on the other hand, the number of his supporters in the media is negligi-

ble. Those who write in his favour had to be cautious. Many of them just limited themselves to praise and adulation. But those who objectively sized up the situation and defended democracy with the force of argument were few. I myself have been accused of being an apostle or propagandist for the president and the government. But I merely want to defend democracy because people are trying to damage democracy through ad hominem attacks on the president. I had to be circumspect in my defence because many of those in government today are not performing properly. Moreover, there are many stories in circulation about the prime minister and his associates that are increasingly indefensible. Hence, I tread warily because I did not want to be labelled as a defender of corruption as I attempted to defend democracy. While I wrote these articles, the situation was such that many corrupt elements had upped the ante on their looting spree thinking that the government was on the way out. So, they thought to make hay while the sun was still shining. Not only did many court judgements expose cases of gross defalcation, they also took back a great amount of the stolen money. This situation led me to advise the president about a year ago that he should take serious notice of corruption. And if he cannot take any action, he should at the very least write a letter to the prime minister to formally register his and the public’s reservations. This is the most I could do as a citizen who supports democracy and try to defend it against the many things undermining it. As the tenure of the government progressed, the attacks on democracy had become so fast and furious that even the members of parliament were uncertain. You can imagine how disheartening it must be for the supporters of democracy to hear as far as a specific month in which the COAS purportedly will take action. I talk here of a column a senior journalist wrote in 2009. He said that he had had a long meeting with the COAS and that the general was going to take some action in March. This columnist also talked of an unnamed witness (who later turned out to be Shafqat Mahmood) to these proceedings. But March came and went and the government was still standing. But the pot-shots at democracy continued. This was done be fuelling rumours and uncertainty. More recently, it was revealed

that the military leadership had said to the Saudi government that they were ready to oust the Zardari government if they got them the clearance from the US. This attempt was done under the perception that the Saudis too were not happy with Zardari. Another such instance was Nawaz Sharif’s long march. Many people thought it would be impossible for the government to survive that. Many established analysts went so far as to give specific expiration dates on the government. People surmised about how and when, not if, President Zardari would exit. There were even open invitations to General Kayani to takeover. But it was not to be. I will not talk of the opposition here like the members of the PPP do (i.e. Nawaz Sharif made many attempts to depose the government). Any opposition leader, looking at the ostensible instability and the socio-political turbulence, would not have discounted the option of early elections. And that is what Nawaz Sharif did. But whenever he saw that the military was looking to capitalise on his actions as a way in, he always came out in support of democracy and said that military rule was unacceptable. The government’s naysayers were sorely disappointed that NS’ actions could not be used in a scheme to depose the government. Thus, flew the accusations of ‘friendly opposition’. Nevertheless, democracy trudged through. A few days later, the government fifth year – the election year – is about to begin. But uncertainty still loomed large a few days ago. Two three weeks ago, I said on Hamid Mir’s how that the Senate elections will take place as scheduled and this government will also present the budget. No one agreed with me except ANP’s Senator Zahid Khan. But the air is much clearer now. It seems that the Senate election will indeed take place and the budget too will be presented. The general elections, God willing, will be in October. Bringing democracy to this juncture wasn’t easy. It was the public’s perseverance and the president’s strategy. But Pakistan’s democracy should never be thought to be totally out of the woods. As long as the effects of the generation raised under martial laws will remain, so will these dangers. They will still be ever-present for some years to come. The writer is one of Pakistan’s most widely read columnists.

faultlines in Sindh’s politics Trouble between the MqM and the Sindhi nationalists

By Ahmed Yusuf


midst the backdrop of the proposed 20th Amendment to the Constitution, tensions between the MQM and Sindhi nationalist parties went to the boil. The disagreement was seemingly on the question of new provinces, with the nationalists essentially accusing the MQM of conspiring (with the PPP) to divide Sindh through their plan of creating new provinces elsewhere in the country. The rage was such that apart from Karachi and a small section of Hyderabad, Sindh went on strike. The MQM, through their iconic chief, responded with the assurance that the division of Sindh is a no-no. And yet, the acrimony persists and distrust has widened. There is much history and much love lost, literally, between the MQM and the Sindhi nationalists, their relationship having started during the MQM’s days of

struggle for recognition. At the time, the two had teamed up, with the Sindhi nationalists providing support – logistical and otherwise – to the MQM, then the united Mohajir Qaumi Movement. Altaf Hussain’s first public gathering in Hyderabad was organised by the nationalists, with Qadir Magsi – now the chief of his own party, the Sindh Taraqqi-Pasand Party (STP) – acting as his bodyguard. The relationship soured soon after when MQM activists tried to rename a busy chowk in Hyderabad, originally named after the iconic progressive peasant leader, Haider Bux Jatoi. To cut a long story short, with the MQM going mainstream, and subsequently going on to become a fixture in government, there is little by way of a “relationship” between the MQM and Sindhi nationalists to speak of. For the nationalists, though, the MQM’s move to become part of the status quo spoke volumes about how much, or how little, they could trust the MQM. Veteran MQM activists share similar sentiments of betrayal, arguing that Sindhi nationalists had first assured them of parity but then responded violently when they tried to rename Haider Chowk as Shuhada (Martyrs) Chowk. For the MQM, this was seen as a realisation that they could not piggyback on Sindhi nationalist forces to gain popularity; rather, it was

to be their own struggle. But all this is past. Or should be. Sindhi nationalism has two strands: one that wants to engage with the state through the process of electoral politics; the other is a separatist strand, of which the largest group is the Jeay Sindh Qaumi Mahaaz (JSQM) led by Bashir Qureshi. The former, including the STP of Qadir Magsi and the Awami Tehrik (AT) of Latif Palijo, are currently looking for larger anchors to become voices in the mainstream. Mian Nawaz Sharif has been trying to become that anchor for the mainstream, and most recently, contact has also been made by the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf. For this second strand to succeed, they need to perpetuate an anti-MQM line as well as an anti-PPP line. At the level of Sindh, this would give the PPP-MQM alliance some real opposition. At the level of the Centre, it would aid either Nawaz Sharif or Imran Khan to gain legitimacy in Sindh. An anti-MQM line is a historical one. But the MQM’s steadfast support of the PPP and in particular, of President Asif Ali Zardari, in all the recent crises has meant that the anathema status given to the MQM has lowered to a certain degree. Both the PPP and the MQM have a larger experience in dealing with the establishment, and the move to create new provinces is

aimed at altering the imbalance of the federation – something which reinforces the establishment’s entrenched position in politics. This process of realignment needs time to mature, and if it does, will entail stronger provinces and a comparatively stronger Pakistan. Because of this reason alone, there is a key question for the nationalists to answer: is their move to strike against the proposed 20th Amendment akin to playing to the tune of the Pakistani establishment? There are democratic mechanisms in place to stop the division of Sindh, but in the larger context of the realignment of power sharing, siding so violently with one option reinforces the perception that some Sindhi nationalists have been working in cahoots with the establishment – an allegation that stems from within the nationalist movement in Sindh. Ultimately, both the MQM public meeting and the nationalists’ strike was one about posturing: pro-Sindh, proPakistan for the MQM; anti-MQM and anti-PPP for the nationalists. Unfortunately for the nationalists, the PPP and the MQM are not interested in being relegated to becoming provincial forces just yet. On an unrelated note, don’t you think Dr Zulfiqar Mirza has been out of the picture for too long? The writer is a Karachi-based journalist. Connect with him on Twitter @ASYusuf

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Thursday, 2 february, 2012

Comment 13

Bridging the divide

a winning streak

in a melting pot of a classroom

let’s build on it

Washington Watch By Dr James J Zogby


’ve just finished teaching a three week January term course at New York University’s Abu Dhabi campus (NYUAD). I’ve had the great fortune to teach before at some wonderful schools across the US. But this, for me, was a special experience, the result of the unique mix of students who had been brought together in this one place. The course I had been invited to teach was called “Bridging the Divide between the Arab World and the West”. It was to be an examination of how the West and Arabs have interacted with each other in the past century, their mutual misperceptions, and the resultant and often tragic problems that have ensued, putting both sides at risk. In the lead up to the start of the course, I had planned my lectures and prepared class exercises. The students would create, conduct, and analyse their own polls of US and Arab attitudes and would develop their own class blog about the divide and the ways they experience it. On day one, I was set to begin and to proceed according to my plan, and then I met my students. The class was made up of mostly first year students. There were sixteen in all from twelve different countries on four continents! The range was extraordinary. Four were Arabs (one each from the UAe, egypt, Libya, and a Palestinian from Lebanon - each with a fascinating story to tell).

There were four Americans (from Minnesota, Ohio, Virginia, and New Jersey). They were joined by colleagues from: the UK, Denmark, Bosnia, Kenya, India, Indonesia, and South Korea. Though different in so many ways, they were, for the most part, “cut from the same cloth”, variations on a theme. They were bright and inquisitive, expressive and insightful, and open to learning from each other. After interviewing each of the students on the first day, it became clear to me that while they were eager to learn about the place they were in, and the Arab World, in general, they also had a great deal to share about their own experiences in confronting the many “divides” that make up our modern world. My students from Columbus, Ohio and St Paul, Minnesota, for example, wanted to tell about how their respective communities were dealing with the influx of large numbers of Somali refugees. The ethnic and religious divides that have shaped the modern histories of India, Indonesia, and Bosnia became subjects for conversation, as did the more recent tensions that have confronted Muslim immigrants to the UK, US and Denmark. Some of my American students shared the apprehension expressed by their parents and peers when they made known their choice to go to a school in the Arab World, while some of my Arab students told of similar reactions they received when they declared their intention to attend an American school. We had much to talk and write about, and we did. What was so extraordinary was how supportive the students were of one another. Although NYUAD is only two years old, a new culture had been created in this remarkable place, itself an important learning experience. As I watched the students engage in conversation, or when I

read their posts and their comments on their colleagues’ posts, or when I saw them just mingling with one another in the cafeteria, it became clear what a remarkable thing was being done here. There were times I felt as though this were a sort of Hogwart’s Castle. And that these little wizards had been plucked from their respective worlds and brought together where their special skills could be developed before they were to be sent back home. But I came to realise that this wasn’t the case at all. The students weren’t magical, nor was the place. It was the opportunity that had been created for meeting and learning from each other that was the magic. It was the vision behind this place that had brought these few hundred very bright young men and women from every continent to learn together, that would create lessons that would last a lifetime. The UAe will be bidding to host the World expo in 2020. Their theme is “Connecting the World, Creating the Future”. In many ways, this is being done across this young country every day, in business, in culture and the arts, and in the meetings of peoples in everyday life. This also describes the NYUAD experience – in every classroom and in every lunch table conversation. The students who are fortunate enough to be a part of this experience are being connected to the world in a very personal way and out of this experience a new generation of global leaders is being created. And because these students are being transformed by their encounters here, they will be better able to heal the many divides they face in our increasingly complex world. I leave here enriched and invigorated by the time I spent with my students in this place. The writer is President of the Arab-American Institute.


ongratulations Team Pakistan! Two big victories, done in style and with huge resolve! Finally, they appear to have gotten it right. With few exceptions, it has been a united and consolidated performance. Proof that a dedicated and hard working leadership does drive potential to the fore. And of course this series is a confirmation that england needs to get its act together in away mode. Just as teams that visit england need to. The past few weeks, to my mind, have been evidence of the thrill of test cricket and the mastery required to play it as opposed to any other form. Fantastic series between South Africa and Sri Lanka, Australia and India and the captioned one have enthralled cricket aficionados beyond belief. From 5am to 9pm literally every day there has been the mad scramble towards TVs. Sleep has been at a premium. What a great game this is. Kudos to the UAe ground management. It’s quite incredible how they’ve put together superb cricketing wickets that lend themselves to results rather than the mundane ones usually prepared on the sub-continent that are specifically designed to do the opposite (or, at the least, favour the home side). The preparation has been immaculate. The wickets looked good even at the end of five days of hard fought test cricket. The grass and outfield of billiard table quality. The bat and ball have random Thoughts been fairly and squarely pitted against each other. By Imran Husain Its obvious that its not just Butt’s departure, although I believe it has a lot to do with it, it’s a lot of hard work and Misbah deserves recognition and admiration for turning a bunch of individuals into a cohesive team. The atmosphere on the field is certainly commendable. There is a synergy. An educated guess is that the dressing room and post game situation has followed suit. It’s amazing how the departure of a few negative influences can impact performance. This Pakistan side is currently undergoing a transition. Its front line bowling attack has been severely depleted because of the spot-fixing debacle. No real successors have been found. It is an area where Pakistan needs to look deep and hard. The compensation lies in the spin department responding as a very strong fighting force. Ajmal, although not young, is outstanding and continues to improve. Rehman is still evolving and can only get better with proper guidance. Hafeez’ intervention has

paid off effectively each time it has been sought, especially against england’s left-handers. The bowlers on both sides have performed splendidly. england’s pace attack has matched the prowess of its spin attack. And Pakistan’s spin attack has been outstanding. The ball has dominated the series on a wicket that has provided a very level playing field. The spin and bounce extracted by the spinners on both sides is a salute to their talent. Batting is a worry to both sides. Known performers have let the sides down, leaving it to others to carry the burden and build the innings. When this happens repeatedly, the pressure has adverse effects. The english top order has failed more often than not. They’ve been tentative and played back to spin and paid the penalty. The ball has come off quicker leaving them stranded, at times unable to read the delivery. Strauss has failed. Pietersen has been a disaster. Bell has struggled desperately. Morgan has tried to hit his way out and has not succeeded. Cook and to an extent Trott have held their own, but for not long enough. Pakistan’s batting has faired marginally better. The openers have gotten off to good starts but Azhar and Younis have failed leaving Misbah, Azhar Ali and Asad Shafiq to bring a semblance of order. And Azhar and Asad have responded courageously. There has been little else to commend. When you look at the statistics for the last match, 72 runs separated the two sides. A total of 870 runs were scored in 5 days at an average of 174 runs a day. In the same time 40 wickets fell. To maintain this winning streak, Team Pakistan will have to dig deeper. The complacency witnessed in the past can quickly change fortunes. Long term plans for the team, apparently being considered by the chairman, including the appointment of a foreign coach should continue to dominate the thinking table. Changes in management must be of a permanent nature; ad-hoc appointees should be thanked and sent home, regardless of the current success. To exceed the sell-by date can only prove to be disastrous. Pakistan must find replacement for its quick attack. The selectors need to travel the width and breadth of the country looking for serious potential now that it is known that Amir will not be returning to the game. They also need to be looking for a serious replacement for Younis. He has had a long and good innings but it’s over when it’s over. We dragged Inzamam to the point of him becoming a liability in more ways than one. Look where it took us. To win is great. The applause is deafening. Too many get lost in the euphoria. While we need to join the applauders and support the team next weekend, we need to emphasise that there are innumerable challenges in getting to the spot on top. Face them and it’s yours. Best of luck! The writer may be contacted via e-mail at

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Thursday, 2 february, 2012

Adele announces Grammy comeback




RITISH soul singer Adele is to make her much-awaited comeback after throat surgery at the upcoming Grammys show, organisers of the music industry awards bash said. Adele, who is nominated for six awards including three of the key categories at the February

12 show, has been out of action since October when a throat problem forced her to cancel all engagements for the rest of the year. “I’m immensely proud to have been asked to perform at this year’s Grammy Awards,” said Adele, whose hits include ‘Someone Like You’ and ‘Rolling in the Deep’, in a statement issued by Grammys organisers-The Recording Academy. “It’s an absolute honour to be included in such a night, and for it to be my first performance in months is very exciting and of course nerve-racking, but what a way to get back into it all,” she added. Adele, 23, has continued to attract awards nominations and wins despite being dogged by her health problems last year, and was second only to Kanye West in Grammys nods. The US rapper is up for seven prizes. Initially, there was concern that the Grammys would suffer if Adele, who is up for six awards, would not be able to sing on the telecast. Already the proud owner of two Grammys, Adele’s nominations this year include Album of the Year, Record of the Year and Song of the Year. The Grammys, the music industry’s top star-studded awards bash, will also feature performances from pop legend Paul McCartney, as well as Coldplay, Rihanna, the Foo Fighters, Bruno Mars, Nicki Minaj and Taylor Swift. Iconic US band The Beach Boys announced in December that they expect to appear at the Grammys, ahead of a 50th anniversary reunion tour, although they were not included in the lineup so far put out by Grammy organisers.


Ayesha, Anum,Adia & Aimen


Aman Sheikh

Dania with a friend

Farha & Maha


Triple a Communications presented Taiba’s Jewellery in a fashion show at PC hotel

angry Veena vents on Twitter

Pakistani starlet Veena Malik seems to have courted many controversies ever since she made her appearance on Indian TV in 2010. The actress from across the border was recently accused of assaulting her co-star Vedita Pratap while shooting for her Bollywood film ‘Mumbai 125 kms’. And that seems to have got the better of her. To vent out her frustration, Veena took to Twitter and wrote, “Dnt hve enuf words to express my feelings 4 some pple........ I wish I had more middle fingers!!!(sic). Looks like the actress is mighty peeved with the way things took shape in the recent past. not too long ago, Veena was embroiled in a nude photo shoot controversy that reportedly led her father to disown her. He had apparently asked the Muslim clerics in Pakistan to take severe action against his daughter for shaming him. To de-stress and get rid of all the anxiety, the lady shopped like crazy yesterday. Talking about her passion for shopping sprees, Veena wrote, “I`m stressed...I shop! I`m happy...I shop! I have nothing to do...I shop!I have something to do...I shop!!!(sic). “I go shopping other stuff but end up buying more shoes... Some Addition to my shoe store!!!(sic),” she added. NEWS dESK

Kareena Kapoor: On marriage and films MuMBai: kareena kapoor has three films with three khans coming up over the next five months –‘Ek Main Aur Ekk Tu’ with Imran on february 10, ‘Agent Vinod’ opposite Saif on March 23 and ‘Talaash’ co-starring Aamir on June 10. quiz her on her favourite khan and she says, “I am a huge Aamir fan and it’s an honour doing back-to-back movies with him. Imran was the biggest reason for doing ‘Ek Main Aur Ekk Tu’, he’s a cool guy who, even after seven films, still looks so natural and fresh on screen. I share amazing chemistry with both these khans, but I know that I’ll make the best ‘jodi’ with Saif in 2012.” ‘Agent Vinod’ has taken its time coming but, she points out, it’s a big-budget action movie. “we’ve finally locked on a release date. The reactions to the first poster and promo have been overwhelming,” she smiles, adding, “Saif and I look great together, I know Agent Vinod will be the film for us.” Post its release, Saif and she are supposed to announce their marriage date. A jeweller in rajkot claims he’s got an order for a rs. 40 lakh royal necklace for her. kareena retorts, “from India to Pakistan to Los Angeles, everyone’s planning our wedding. It’s discussed more than the Lok Pal Bill. Imran’s the only co-star who hasn’t asked me when I’m getting married. I respect him for that, and wish others wouldn’t too. when two people are in love, it’s obvious that they’ll take the relationship forward when they think the time is right.” right now, she says, both their energies are focused on ensuring the best launch for their movie: “After that we’ll decide what to tell the world. I understand everyone is curious but it’s our choice. They should respect that.” In her Valentine’s Day release, kareena and Imran get married in a drunken stupour. “Most films end with a marriage, ‘Ek Main Aur Ekk Tu’ starts with one, even though my character, riana Braganza, is not interested in getting married. She’s lost her job, is alone in Vegas, but she’s no ‘bechari’. rather she’s a sunshine girl like me,” says kareena. “only I’m far more conservative when it comes to marriage and I will do it right.” aGENCiES

Jassi Singh

Photos by: Murtaza Ali

Mariam & Mirrat

Mr & Mrs Khurram

Mrs Waqar & Mrs Imran

Mr & Mrs Kashif

Kangana replaces on Ekta Kapoor’s list


MuMBai: Ekta kapoor was considering her blue-eyed girl Vidya Balan for their next big project ‘Shootout at wadala’. But after much delay and deliberation she is finally replaced by kangana ranaut in the film. The underworld film to be directed by Sanjay gupta has John Abraham, Anil kapoor and Tusshar kapoor in lead roles. “for quite some time, Vidya Balan was being considered for the female lead, to be paired opposite John Abraham. John plays the character of the notorious gangster Manya Surve and Vidya was to play his girlfriend,” says a source closely associated with Balaji films. However it seems like Ekta kapoor herself was responsible for making Vidya so big with the success of ‘The Dirty Picture’ that the actress wasn’t sure whether she would want to do this role in the male-centric underworld drama. “So she opted out of the project but on a very amicable note and there is absolutely no bad-blood,” adds the source. So the makers replaced Vidya by their other favourite - kangana ranaut who worked with Balaji in ‘once Upon a Time in Mumbaai’. Apparently kangana ranaut’s role is based on a real-life character and much against the glamorous roles we have seen her in the past, she has a performance-oriented part in this shootout saga. “The fresh pairing of John and kangana should add to the merit,” adds the source. aGENCiES

Nauman, Ainy, Mehnum, Amna, Abu Bakar

Katrina to do daredevil stunts for ‘Ek Tha Tiger’ MuMBai: After a box office dud ‘Yuvvraj’, Salman and katrina will once again share screenspace in Yrf’s ‘Ek Tha Tiger’. katrina kaif is shooting in Havana for the kabir khan film and Hollywood action director Conrad Palmisano is making the actress do daring stunts like free-falls. katrina, under the protective eye of co-star and friend Salman khan, is doing what one member of Cuban unit describes as “the real thing”. “These are stunts that any macho hero would think twice before daring. katrina is really pushing the envelope as far as the female machismo is concerned. She is doing free-falls with Salman by her side. we hear kareena in ‘Agent Vinod’ and kangna ranaut in ‘krrish 2’ would also be attempting the hi-jinks,” said the unit member. when asked about her daredevil act, katrina said: “Yeah, it’s scary but great fun. I’ve only done very feminine delicate roles so far. This is a new challenge for me. I guess that’s what I’m looking for at this stage of my career.” Palmisano, who has supervised the stunts for over 200 topnotch films and television series, oversaw Sheila LeBeouf’s stunts in ‘Transformers: Dark of The Moon’, nicolas Cage in the forthcoming ‘Seeking Justice’ and Jackie Chan in ‘rush Hour’, informed the source from on-location. Apparently Palmisano initially suggested “something softer” for katrina. The actress prepares for the

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Pakistani cinema’s going through a rough patch: Ali Zafar S

Faisal & Khadija

Mr & Mrs Nasir


INGeR-ACTOR Ali Zafar says Pakistani cinema is going through a bad patch for want of good stories but feels that with the entry of new age directors and the social media, the content quality is expected to improve. “Pakistani cinema is going through a rough patch, but slowly it is getting better, with new age directors getting into filmmaking and producing films like ‘Bol’ and ‘Khuda Kay Liye’,” Ali said in an interview. The 31-year-old actor admits that the new generation in Pakistan is opening up to fresh and realistic stories. “It feels very nice to see that youth and people are aware, they are more politicised. They all want change. It is a myth that Pakistan is a conservative country,” he added. Once a prolific moviemaking country, Pakistan had 1,300 cinema halls in the 1970s with an average annual production of around 300 movies. But by 2005, the country had only 270 cinema halls and made about 18 movies a year. The rest of the movie halls have been converted into gas stations, shopping malls or car showrooms. In 2010, just eight Pakistani movies were produced. Movie buffs in Pakistan have a hearty appetite for Hollywood and Bollywood movies, but have to watch pirated copies of films as access to movie theatres is limited for most people. In 2008, the Pakistani government lifted the ban on Indian films and that gave a much-needed boost to the cinema business, says Ali. “Since Indian films have started coming to Pakistan, people are going to cinemas more often. Now more cinema halls are being constructed. The government has made the rule that every mall should have a theatre and screens and it is certainly getting better,” he added. In recent times two Pak-

istani films-‘Bol’ and ‘Khuda Kay Liye’ by Shoaib Mansoor were not only appreciated on their home turf but also won critical acclaim in the international arena. Mehreen Jabbar’s ‘Ramchand Pakistani’, which had Indian actress Nandita Das, too was appreciated globally. Pakistani filmmaker Mian Adnan Ahmad’s short film ‘Heal’ won the Best Science Fiction-Fantasy Film award at this year’s Comic-Con International Independent Film Festival. Although Ali hasn’t done any films in Pakistan, he worked as a model for several commercials. He has also acted in Pakistani TV serials like ‘Lunda-Bazar’ and ‘Kanch Ke Par’ and the highly popular teenage sitcom ‘Kollege Jeans’. He is delighted to see the quality of shows being produced in the country. He also expressed his gratitude to the government for taking note of Mehdi Hassan’s ill health. Zafar, who admits the ghazal maestro’s divine music is his biggest inspiration, dedicated a song to him in his latest album ‘Jhoom’, ‘Jaane man’. This, along with his tweets wishing Hasan, a swift recovery, has helped turn the spotlight on the ailing singer. The Information Minister of Sindh, Shazia Marri, visited him in hospital and offered to bear the expenses of his treatment, sating that if need be Hasan would be sent abroad. “The government has taken the right steps. I’m happy to hear they’ve taken charge of his medical facilitations. I’ll pray for his health. He is a great asset to music. There is no singer like him, never was and never can be,” says a relieved Ali, who unveiled his first Bollywood score for London Paris New York yesterday. Unlike fellow Pakistani actor-sing Atif Aslam, Ali doesn’t think he can judge a talent hunt contest even though he’s been offered several on both sides of the border: “Some of the contestants are far better than me. So, I’d like to concentrate on films and acting.”

Rachel Weisz

Justin Timberlake to play Clint Eastwood rival in ‘Trouble with the Curve’

L’oréal Ad Banned in Britain LONDON



For a local girl, Rachel Weisz sure just got the cold shoulder in London. L’Oréal Paris became the latest cosmetics company to run afoul of the United Kingdom’s Advertising Standards Authority, which deemed a print ad for Revitalift Clinical Repair 10 featuring the Oscar winner to be, well...not fit for print! Is it that racy? No, the L’Oréal ad didn’t get banned for the same reasons that highly stylised fragrance ads featuring Dakota Fanning and Hailee Steinfeld were outlawed. (Too provocative and supposedly romanticising suicide, respectively.) Instead, it was banned for the same reason that Lancôme ads starring Julia Roberts and Christy Turlington were nixed. Weisz is beautiful, for sure, but the ASA just couldn’t get behind the 41-year-old’s smooth-asa-baby’s-bottom visage in ruling that the advertisement “misleadingly exaggerated” the product’s promised effect, as it was “heavily retouched”. Meanwhile, L’Oréal, which admits to touching up the photo, as it does all photos, is standing firm (no pun intended). “The ad sought to represent Rachel Weisz as favourably as possible and therefore every effort had gone into ensuring the most flattering set-up,” the Paris-based company said in a statement. “Rachel Weisz had been professionally styled and made-up and then lit and shot by a professional photographer in a studio setting.” Although it’s hard to tell from looking at most magazines and billboards, this sort of anti-airbrushing campaign isn’t singular to the UK. Procter & Gamble voluntarily pulled a CoverGirl ad with Taylor Swift (who’s 22!) after the U.S.’ National Advertising Division deemed the ad too Photoshopped to be a reliable indicator of just how thick your lashes could get with NatureLuxe Mousse Mascara.

stunts every morning. “She wakes up at the crack of dawn to get warmed up for Palmisano’s stunts. Then she gets down to action. Very risky ones, I might add which many of our Bollywood heroes would insist on being done by doubles. katrina is out to prove she can do action scenes as well,” said the source.. aGENCiES

Priyanka given the

royal ignore MuMBai: Despite being the heroine of ‘Agneepath’ Priyanka Chopra was noticeably absent from the film’s success party that Hrithik and Sussanne hosted. After rumours of Shah rukh and Priyanka’s closeness started gaining more than its share of media attention, all the star wives, right from Hrithik’s wife Sussanne to others, have been giving PC quite the cold shoulder. Sussanne didn’t invite PC to the ‘Agneepath’ success party because gauri was there. This news is especially shocking since Priyanka is the ‘krissh 3’ heroine and has a longstanding friendship with Hrithik and the roshan family at large. The snubs don’t just stop there — Priyanka was excluded at gauri’s Christmas bash and was also apparently ignored at Parmeshwar godrej’s bash in honour of oprah winfrey. who could also forget the famous cold shoulder that PC got when she went to greet gauri at the Zee Cine Awards? gauri didn’t respond to Priyanka’s greeting and completely ignored her. wow! guess PC better watch out – it looks like she has some star wife enemies in the making. aGENCiES



Justin Timberlake is in talks to join Clint eastwood and Amy Adams in ‘Trouble with the Curve’, eW has confirmed. eastwood, in his first acting role since 2008’s Gran Torino, stars as an aging baseball scout on one final trip with his daughter (Adams) to find the sport’s next big star. Timberlake would play a rival scoutand a possible love interest for the daughter. Matthew Lillard has a supporting role as another rival scout. eastwood’s longtime producing partner Robert Lorenz is making his feature directing debut with the film-it’s the first time eastwood has acted for a director other than himself since 1993′s ‘In the Line of Fire’. Production is set to begin in March.

Daniel Radcliffe comfortable in his own skin MuMBai: ‘Harry Potter’ star Daniel radcliffe, set to go naked for his new film ‘kill Your Darlings’, says he is comfortable with nudity and his own body. The actor first stripped off for psychological drama ‘Equus’ on the west End stage. “I’m comfortable with my body,” radcliffe told Heat magazine. However, the actor also admits he will never be able to compete with “Harry Potter” co-star rupert grint’s muscular body. “I’m not going to try to compete with rupert on the arms front. His dad is a big guy, so if anyone was going to get the proper muscleman build, it was rupert. You’d have to search pretty hard to find a more handsome ginger. He’s also a dude. I wish I could be that calm. I’m lucky to have found an industry where this level of hyperactivity is encouraged. otherwise I’d just be a nuisance,” he added. aGENCiES

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16 Foreign News

Thursday, 2 february, 2012

iraq executes 17 people in one day, 51 this year BAgHDAD afP

Iraq executed 17 convicted criminals in one day this week, the justice ministry said on Wednesday, bringing to at least 51 the number so far this year. “The justice ministry carried out (death) sentences against 17 people condemned for terrorist and criminal crimes ... on Tuesday,” a statement said. “The ministry is continuing to carry out punishments against criminals according to the law and the constitution,” Justice Minister Hassan al-Shammari was quoted as saying. Last month, ministry spokesman Haidar al-Saadi said Iraq had so far executed 34 people this year, including two women and a Syrian. That is half the entire figure of 68 for all of 2011, including three foreigners and three Iraqi women. UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Navi Pillay expressed shock last week at the number of executions, criticising the lack of transparency in court proceedings and calling for an immediate suspension of the death penalty. “I call on the government of Iraq to implement an immediate moratorium on the institution of the death penalty,” she said. “even if the most scrupulous fair trial standards were observed, this would be a terrifying number of executions to take place in a single day,” said Pillay, a South African high court judge. “Given the lack of transparency in court proceedings, major concerns about due process and fairness of trials, and the very wide range of offences for which the death penalty can be imposed in Iraq, it is a truly shocking figure,” she said. The United Nations estimates that more than 1,200 people have been sentenced to death in Iraq since 2004, but it does not have comprehensive statistics on executions. Death sentences in Iraq must be signed by the country’s president, currently Jalal Talabani, but the chief executive may delegate that authority to either of the two vice presidents. As Talabani is an ardent opponent of the death penalty, that is what he does.

WikiLeaks chief assange takes case to Britain’s top court LONDON afP

WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange took his fight against extradition to Sweden over rape allegations to Britain’s top court on Wednesday in a case that could trigger a major upheaval in european law. The 40year-old Australian’s lawyers told the Supreme Court in London that the Swedish prosecutor who issued the european Arrest Warrant in December 2010 was not a proper judicial authority. “This appeal involves a single issue of law which can be very simply stated. The question is whether a Swedish prosecutor has judicial authority for the purposes of the extradition act,” Assange’s lawyer Dinah Rose told the court. Rose said legal principles going back 1,500 years were “undermined” by the fact that the warrant for Assange’s arrest was issued by a prosecutor, saying there was no guarantee they would be “independent and impartial” like a judge. She said it was a “a serious interference with individual liberty”. Seven judges — six male and one female — are hearing Assange’s appeal over two days at the court in London and are not expected to return their judgement for several weeks. Dozens of supporters gathered in bright winter sunshine as Assange arrived as a peace activist outside sang “he shall be released”. He sat in court flanked by female supporters and near supporter Vaughan Smith, at whose mansion in eastern england Assange has spent most of the last year under virtual house arrest. If the court rejects his appeal, the former computer hacker will have exhausted all his options in Britain but he could still make a last-ditch appeal to the european Court of Human Rights, prosecutors have said. Assange denies the rape and sexual assault allegations made by two women in Sweden, and insists the sex was consensual. He has also claimed that the allegations against him are politically motivated.

TEhraN: Schoolgirls wave iranian flags during a ceremony marking the 33th anniversary of ayatollah ruhollah Khomeini’s return from exile at Khomeini’s mausoleum on Wednesday. afp

Iran’s economy to grow despite sanctions: Nejad TEHRAN



ReSIDeNT Mahmoud Ahmadinejad predicted on Wednesday that Iran’s economy would grow eight percent over the next 12 months despite severe Western sanctions, as he presented his government’s annual budget to parliament. Gross domestic product (GDP) would swell significantly, Ahmadinejad was quoted as saying by the official IRNA news agency, without providing any details on what components of the economy would generate the growth. That would continue a trend seen in recent years as Iran — OPeC’s second-biggest producer — profits from historically high oil prices. Ahmadinejad set out a $416 billion (316.6 billion euro) state budget for Iran’s calendar and fiscal year, which runs this year from midMarch. That was 14 percent less than for the 2011-2012 budget, which was set at $484 billion. The president did not quantify the

size of the economy. But the International Monetary Fund estimates that 2011 GDP (from January to December) was $480 billion at the official exchange rate, around 2.5 percent higher than the previous year. Ahmadinejad did not refer to the government’s estimated price for oil, which accounts for more than half of budget revenues. The last budget calculated oil revenues at $82 per barrel. Iran gets 80 percent of its foreign revenues from oil exports. Nor did Ahmadinejad mention the exchange rate the government was counting on for the Iranian rial against the dollar. The rial has slipped sharply against the dollar in the past three months, losing around half its value as Western sanctions have piled up. State television, however, reported that the exchange rate would be calculated at 11,500 rials to the dollar. That was stronger than the new official rate of 12,260 rials announced last week — and far stronger than the 18,500 rate the dollar is fetching on the black market. Iran’s economy has been grappling with ratcheted up sanctions

imposed by the United States and the european Union in an effort to pressure Tehran to drop nuclear activities suspected to include research for an atomic bomb. US President Barack Obama said last month the sanctions had reduced Iran’s economy to a “shambles.” Iran, which insists its nuclear programme is peaceful, has reacted angrily as the West has sought to isolate it by curtailing its oil exports and operations by its central bank. Ahmadinejad, though, has insisted that Iran has sufficient foreign reserves and oil customers elsewhere to shrug off the sanctions. Parliamentary speaker Ali Larijani again underlined that threat on Wednesday, saying that while Iran considers “the Strait of Hormuz as the strait of peace, it will cut the hands of anyone who seeks (military) adventurism in the Persian Gulf and the Sea of Oman,” IRNA reported. The United States, which keeps warships deployed in the Gulf, has warned any attempt to close the Strait of Hormuz would be a “red line” not to be crossed.

IAEA chief inspector says still ‘work to do’ with Iran VIENNA afP

The chief UN nuclear inspector declared that there was still “a lot of work” to be done on his return Wednesday from a trip to Iran, as the Tehran government confirmed his team visited no atomic sites. Herman Nackaerts told reporters that his team had had a “good” visit which was organised in the wake of a damning report by the UN’s atomic watchdog on Iran’s nuclear ambitions and was planning to return soon. “We had three days of intensive discussions about all our priorities. We are committed to resolving all the outstanding issues and the Iranians said they are committed too,” Nackaerts said at Vienna airport. “But of course there is still a lot of work to be done, and so we have planned another trip in the very near future,” said Nackaerts, one of six-person International Atomic energy Agency team to visit Iran. “We had a good trip ... I will now go back to headquarters and inform the DG (IAeA director general Yukiya Amano) about the mission,” he added, declining to comment further. The visit took place against a backdrop of heightened tensions following the publication in November of an IAeA report that significantly raised suspicions Iran had done work on developing nuclear weapons.

turkey warns Europe against mounting racism, islamophobia ANKARA afP

Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip erdogan on Wednesday warned of rising racism and Islamophobia in europe as he once again denounced a recent French bill outlawing denial of Armenian genocide. The French bill, was a “serious manifestation of an insidious danger in europe”, he said. “There is an undeniable racist approach, a racist mentality ... hidden behind this bill,” erdogan said at a meeting of his ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) in Ankara. “This is not an affair that only concerns Turkey and France. This is directly a european matter, a european

Union matter,” he emphasised. Turkey reacted furiously last week when the French Senate approved the law, which threatens with jail anyone in France who denies that the 1915 massacre of Armenians by Ottoman Turk forces amounted to genocide. Turkey would not remain silent to rising racism and Islamophobia in europe, erdogan said, calling on friends of Turkey in europe to urgently address the problem. “Turkey is a not a country that ... will bow to insidiously growing racism, xenophobia and Islamophobia in europe,” he said. “I would like to sincerely warn our friends in europe that the situation in France is a serious manifestation of an insidious danger.” On Tuesday, two separate groups of French politicians who oppose the con-

tentious legislation — from both the Senate and the lower house of parliament — said they had requested the constitutional council to examine the law. The council is obliged to deliver its judgement within a month, but this can be reduced to eight days if the government deems the matter urgent. “I believe and hope that the constitutional council will act with common sense and reach a conclusion that is compatible with French values and european Union principles,” said erdogan. If the French senators had not taken the “racist and discriminatory” law to the constitutional council, Turkish-French relations would have suffered “irreparable harm”, he said. Last week, the Turkish Premier warned that his Islamist-rooted govern-

ment would punish Paris with unspecified retaliatory measures if French President Nicolas Sarkozy signed it into law.Ankara has already halted political and military cooperation with France and was threatening to cut off economic and cultural ties.France has already officially recognised the killings as a genocide, but the new law would go further by punishing anyone who denies this with up to a year in jail and a fine of 45,000 euros ($57,000).Armenians say up to 1.5 million of their forebears were killed in 1915 and 1916 by the forces of Turkey’s former Ottoman empire. Turkey disputes the figure, arguing that 500,000 died, and denies this was genocide, ascribing the toll to fighting and starvation during

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Thursday, 2 february, 2012

Foreign News 17

Deaths mount as Russia resists UN drive on Syria DAMASCUS



ReSH bloodshed swept Syria on Wednesday after Western powers and the Arab League demanded immediate UN action to stop the regime’s “killing machine” but holdout Russia said any vote needed more time. Wrangling at the United Nations came as fierce clashes raged across Syria’s powder keg regions between President Bashar al-Assad’s security forces and rebel fighters of the Free Syrian Army. At least eight civilians and 15 soldiers were killed during fierce fighting in the central Syrian city of Homs, the Syr-

ian Observatory for Human Rights said. Activists said the unrest had killed nearly 200 people nationwide over the previous three days. US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, backed by her French and British counterparts and Qatar’s premier, led the charge on Tuesday for a tough UN resolution that would call on Assad to end the bloodshed and hand over power. “We all know that change is coming to Syria. Despite its ruthless tactics, the Assad regime’s reign of terror will end,” Clinton told the UN Security Council. “The question for us is: how many more innocent civilians will die before this country is able to move forward?” But on Wednesday, Russia’s Deputy Foreign Min-

ister Gennady Gatilov appeared to snuff out any hopes of an early vote. “Attempts are being made to find a text that is acceptable to all sides and would help find a political solution for the situation in Syria. Therefore there is going to be no vote in the next days,” he told Interfax news agency. The United Nations says more than 5,400 people have been killed in Syria since the pro-democracy uprising began in mid-March . But UN human rights chief Navi Pillay said on January 25 her organisation had stopped compiling a death toll for Syria’s crackdown on the protests because it is too difficult to get information. Qatari Prime Minister Sheikh Hamad bin Jassim Al-

Thani, speaking at the Security Council on behalf of the Arab League, said Assad’s regime had “failed to make any sincere effort” to end the crisis and believed the only solution was “to kill its own people.” “Bloodshed continued and the killing machine is still at work,” he said. But Russia, a longstanding ally of Assad and one of the regime’s top suppliers of weapons, declared that the UN body did not have the authority to impose such a resolution. China voiced support for Russia’s position. Moscow’s ambassador to the UN, Vitaly Churkin, argued that Syria should “be able to decide for itself” and said the council “cannot impose the parameters for an internal settlement. It sim-

ply does not have the mandate to do so.” The key sticking point appeared to be the Arab League call for Assad’s speedy departure. “Regime change is not our profession,” Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said during a trip to Australia. The draft resolution, introduced by Arab League member Morocco, calls for the formation of a unity government leading to “transparent and free elections.” Meanwhile, the Free Syrian Army said half of the country was now effectively a no-go zone for the security forces. “Fifty percent of Syrian territory is no longer under the control of the regime,” its Turkey-based commander Colonel Riyadh al-Asaad told AFP.

Freeze claims more lives in eastern Europe WARSAW afP

europe shivered in some of the coldest temperatures seen in decades Wednesday as the freeze claimed more lives overnight and countries battled to clear snow from roads and railways. At least 28 people froze to death overnight in eastern and central europe, bringing the toll to more than 80 in the region since the cold snap began last week. Italy meanwhile struggled to clear its motorways and railways after heavy snow falls ed to the cancellation of a number of top football matches on Tuesday, including Juventus-Parma. In Ukraine, officials said 13 people had died of hypothermia over the past 24 hours, bringing the overall toll to 43 over the past six days. Most were homeless people who froze to death on the streets, but seven died in their homes and more than 800 sought medical help for frostbite and hypothermia as temperatures plunged to minus 30 degrees Celsius (minus 22 degrees Fahrenheit) in some regions. Poland reported five found dead overnight, bringing the overall toll to 20 since temperatures plummeted there on Friday. The victims, most of whom had been homeless, were four men aged 29 to 61 and an 83-year-old woman, police said. Temperatures plunged to minus 30 degrees Celsius in some parts of the country, officials said. Most of the victims had been homeless, or individuals who got drunk and fell asleep outdoors, they said.

‘Trained separatists’ behind Tibetan unrest, says China BEIJINg afP

China has blamed “trained separatists” for a wave of unrest in Tibetan-inhabited areas last week that left at least two people dead and dozens injured, state press reported Wednesday. The southwestern province of Sichuan — which has big populations of ethnic Tibetans, many of whom complain of religious repression and a lack of freedom — was rocked by three violent clashes last week. Rights groups say security forces shot dead peaceful protesters in each of the incidents but China has acknowledged only two of them, and says they were triggered by a violent crowd of demonstrators. “Initial evidence showed that the riots and assaults were well planned beforehand and instigated by trained separatists against the country,” the official China Daily newspaper said, citing the Sichuan government. It said protesters attacked police stations with stones and molotov cocktails, prompting the police to take action and “defend themselves”. Chinese authorities have barred foreign journalists from going to the affected areas, making independent attempts to verify the situation there near impossible. “The riots were serious crimes plotted by Tibetan separatist forces in and outside of China,” the english-language Global Times said, also citing the Sichuan government.

SOfia: a woman protects herself from the cold on Wednesday as two more people died in Bulgaria amid a cold snap that has seen temperatures drop to their lowest levels in a century in some parts of the country. afp

Romney leads US Republicans after big florida win TAMPA afP

Mitt Romney marched ahead with a commanding lead in the US Republican race for the White House after trouncing his main rival Newt Gingrich in a bitterly-fought Florida primary on Wednesday. The margin of victory — 46 percent to 32 percent — dealt a bitter blow to former House speaker Gingrich, who faces a Herculean task to try to catch up with Romney, a multimillionaire businessman and former Massachusetts governor. Gingrich, 68, shocked the party establishment when he thumped Romney, 64, in South Carolina earlier this month, but his support sank fast in the larger and more diverse state of Florida, and Romney now has all the momentum. Romney’s double-digit win in the Sunshine State demonstrated his strength in a key general election battleground, and he used his victory speech to urge Americans to evict President Barack Obama from the White House in November. “Mr. President, you were elected to lead. You chose to follow, and now it’s time for you to get out of the way,” he said, to chants of “Mitt! Mitt! Mitt!” from hundreds of supporters in a packed Tampa ballroom. “President Obama wants to fundamentally transform

America and make it something perhaps we wouldn’t recognize. I want to restore to America the values and principles that made us the hope of the earth,” Romney said. It was a warning shot at Democrats who have been salivating over the increasingly caustic tone of the Republican campaign — marked in Florida by a heavy exchange of increasingly personal attacks between

Romney and Gingrich. “A competitive primary does not divide us, it prepares us and we will win,” Romney said. “When we gather back here in Tampa seven months from now for our convention, ours will be a united party with a winning ticket for America.” But in a sign of how bitter the campaign has become, Gingrich broke with tradition by neither congratulating Romney nor calling him after the vote. The economy seemed to be on the minds of many voters in Florida, including businessman Paul Jackson, who said he voted for Romney because “he has the best chance of beating the president — the current president. “I don’t agree with everything that he stands for, but I need to see a change that satisfies my selfish needs as a small business owner,” he said. Florida has been badly hit by the “Great Recession” wrought by the 2008 financial crisis — unemployment is close to 10 percent and the state was at the epicenter of the housing collapse. Many residents have seen their homes repossessed or have mortgages now worth more than the value of their homes. Despite the stinging defeat, Gingrich promised to wage a long-haul battle all the way to the August 27-30 convention, which will formally crown a nominee to go head-to-head against Obama on November 6.

All 25 Chinese workers kidnapped in Egypt freed BEIJINg afP

China said Wednesday that 25 Chinese workers kidnapped by egyptian Bedouins demanding the release of their Islamist relatives had been released. The incident comes days after 29 Chinese nationals in Sudan were captured by rebels who attacked their camp in the volatile South Kordofan state, where they were involved in a road-building project. They have still not been released. “I can confirm that all 25 people have been released. Right now they are being taken care of by the egyptian government and are staying in army accommodation,” the assistant to the Chinese ambassador to egypt told AFP. “They are all well, with no injuries. There was no need to send them to hospital,” the Cairo-based assistant, who would not give his name, said over the phone. He refused to give details of how the workers were released. The Chinese nationals — technicians and engineers who work for a military-owned cement factory in central Sinai — were abducted on Tuesday on their way to work, an egyptian security official said. The protesters who seized them were demanding the release of five Bedouins held in connection with an attack on the tourist resort of Taba in 2004, part of a series of bombings claimed by an Islamist group. They said the ruling Supreme Council of the Armed Forces, which took power last year when a popular uprising ousted egyptian president Hosni Mubarak, had repeatedly promised to release the Bedouins.

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Thursday, 2 february, 2012

wozniacki parts company with coach Page 21

Pakistan keen to complete England whitewash DUBAI



PIN-WeARY england will be desperate to avoid the humiliation of a series whitewash against Pakistan in the third and final Test which starts at Dubai Stadium on Friday. Andrew Strauss's men, pulverised by Pakistan spinners Saeed Ajmal and Abdul Rehman, are also in danger of losing their world number one spot after a dismal 10-wicket defeat in Dubai and the 72-run capitulation in Abu Dhabi. Pakistan have never inflicted a Test series whitewash on england, who topped the Test rankings in August last year with an unbeaten nine series sequence, but have seen 34 of their 40 wickets tumble on tour to Pakistan's spinners. Off-spinner Ajmal has led the destruction with 17 scalps while left-armer Rehman has claimed 12 wickets and Mohammad Hafeez five. england need to win to guarantee their top spot on April 1 -- the cut-off date for a $175,000 award to the side sitting at the top of the ICC Test championship table. But their celebrated batting order has so far failed to answer the challenge laid down by Pakistan's wily spinners. Jonathan Trott (141 in four innings) tops their batting chart, while Andrew Strauss (68) and Alastair Cook (109) have failed to provide strong starts. Key batsmen Kevin Pietersen (17 in four innings), Ian Bell (36) and eoin Morgan (41) have also struggled to cope with the slower ball as england lost the first Test in three days and the second in four. The tourists will resist the temptation of replacing Morgan with Ravi Bopara whose last Test innings was a 44 not out, against India at The Oval. Speaking after the Abu Dhabi defeat Strauss said his chastened team needed to bounce back after two dismal performances. "Pakistan have thoroughly deserved

DUBAI: Asad Shafiq tosses a ball during a practice session. (right) Misbah ul-Haq (L) speaks with teammate Taufiq Umar (r) during a practice session at the ICC global Cricket Academy. afp their victory in the series," he said. "We’ve been below where we want to be and we need to come back and bounce back strongly from this. "As a batting unit we have to hold our hands up and say we haven’t been good enough, it’s been pretty apparent, we need to be better than that," said Strauss, whose last hundred came 30 months ago. The defeats have left no doubt about england's vulnerability to the slow ball on subcontinental wickets, a weakness they will need to address before tours to Sri Lanka and India later in the year. "If you take the point of view, which I

think you’ve got to, that you learn as much from your defeats as you do from your victories then I think we’ve learned some valuable lessons going forward," Strauss said. "It’s not easy in these conditions, in these circumstances but we’re good enough players to be able to adjust to the conditions we’ve encountered." Under Strauss' stewardship england have won only twice on the subcontinent -- both times against minnows Bangladesh. Pakistan are chasing the whitewash as they look to climb the Test rankings and captain Misbah-ul Haq has vowed his team will be going for the jugular in Dubai. "We

will try our level best to do the same we did in the first two Tests, we have the best team up against us so they can come back in the series, but what is in our control we will do," said Misbah, who has not lost a series since taking over in October 2010. "We need to do our hundred percent and be focused for good cricket." The Dubai Stadium pitch, which provided help to spinners from the first day of the opening Test, is likely to continue its assistance to slow bowlers. Pakistan may consider replacing left-arm seamer Junaid Khan with Wahab Riaz, who has been part of the squad without taking the field.

Board rECommEnds sPlit rolE For PrEsidEnt

ICC hikes Test cricket stakes DUBAI afP

The Board of the International Cricket Council (ICC) on Wednesday recommended to split the role of president with a new chairman's post from 2014, and deferred the nomination of Bangladesh's Mustafa Kamal as vice-president. "Following Board discussions since October 2011 and consistent with the recommendations in the Justice Woolf's report, the Board passed a unanimous resolution recommending to the ICC Council an amendment to the ICC article of association so that from 2014 the current presidency role is split," said a ICC release after a meeting here. The recommendations create a new system whereby the presidency will

be an ambassadorial role appointed on a one year rotational basis, while a chairman will lead the board. The name of Mustafa Kamal (Bangladesh Cricket Board president) was put forward for nomination jointly by Pakistan and Bangladesh. The amendment will be discussed at the next ICC Board meeting before being submitted for approval by the ICC annual meeting in June this year, the ICC said. India's Sharad Pawar is the current ICC president while New Zealand's Alan Isaac, the current vice-president will take over from Pawar in June this year. The ICC had said the governance review was conducted in April last year in order to adopt a new strategic plan as one of the key initiatives to build a bigger and better global game. The Board will also consider the position and role, if any, of the ICC vice-president

DUBAI: ICC Chief Executive Haroon Lorgat (r) addresses a press conference as Vice President Alan Isaac (L) looks on. afp

between 2012 and 2014. Accordingly, the nomination received of Kamal, the Bangladesh Cricket Board president from 2012-14 will be considered as a part of this process. Kamal said he was not disappointed over his nomination being deferred. "Why should I be disappointed," Kamal told AFP. "The Board had been thinking along the lines of these recommendations for some time now and we have found the best possible solution in the meeting of the Board of which I am a part. "I can still be the president in the post 2014 period," said the 65-year-old Kamal, president of the Bangladesh Board since September 2009. The ICC also enhanced incentives for Tests, the five-day format which is in danger from the rapidly growing Twenty20 brand of the game. "A total of $3.8 million in prize money will be shared among the top four sides on 1 April 2013, 2014 and 2015, after the ICC Board approved a proposal to promote Test match cricket," the ICC announced. That incentive will run until the ICC Test Championship event in 2017, originally scheduled for 2013. ICC chief executive Haroon Lorgat backed the prize money increase. "This worthy increase in prize money for the top four teams in the Test rankings can only be right," he said. "We are delighted at the growing interest and quality of Test cricket and we must continue to promote the pinnacle form of the game before and beyond the Test Championship in 2017." Previously, the top team in the ICC Test rankings received a cheque for $175,000 but in future will receive a minimum of $450,000 rising to $500,000 in 2015. From 2016 there will be further increases in Test prize money, the ICC said. The ICC also approved an initial amount of $12 million for a programme aimed at developing more competitive teams among full, associates and affiliate members. The ICC has ten full, 36 associates and 59 affiliatee members. The Board was also presented with an independent review of its Anti-corruption and security unit (ACSU) presented by Sir Ronnie Flanagan.

ICC to assess Pakistan security for cricket revival DUBAI afP

Cricket's governing body will carry out a proper assessment of security in Pakistan before deciding on sending match officials for a proposed tour by Bangladesh, an official said Wednesday. International cricket has been suspended in Pakistan since the terrorists attacks on the Sri Lankan team bus in March 2009, which killed eight people and left seven visiting players and their assistant coach wounded in Lahore. The attacks also injured reserve umpire Ahsan Raza of Pakistan and horrified match referee Chris Broad of england and Australian match umpires Simon Taufel and Steve Davis. The incident forced Pakistan to play its home series at neutral veunes. Their team is currently playing england in the United Arab emirates. Pakistan have invited Bangladesh for a three-match one-day series in April this year in their bid to revive international cricket at home. The Bangladesh government will send a delegation to Pakistan in mid-February to assess security in the country before clearing the tour. The International Cricket Council (ICC) had formed a Task Team to revive cricket in Pakistan in 2009. The ICC chief executive Haroon Lorgat said the ICC will carry out their own assessment before sending match umpires and referees for the Bangladesh series, once it is cleared. "Safety and security is a serious issue," said Lorgat in reply to a questionn whether the ICC will send officials to Pakistan. "There are grave responsibilities on any of us who send teams or match officials (to Pakistan) and we need to do a proper assessment before we come to any conclusion about touring Pakistan." Lorgat said Wednesday's Board meeting in Dubai did not discuss the possibilities of international cricket returning to Pakistan. "The board did not discuss international cricket returning to Pakistan as you all know they are presently engaged with a potential tour from Bangladesh and I think we need to see what unfolds before we get into that sort of discussion.

Anderson upbeat despite spin pitches DUBAI afP

england spearhead James Anderson has denied seamers were discouraged by the spin-friendly pitches here, saying he was fully focused on how to win the third and final Test against Pakistan starting from Friday. Spinners have dominated Pakistan's wins in Dubai in the first Test and in Abu Dhabi in the second with 34 of the 40 wickets going to slow bowlers. Off those, Saeed Ajmal has taken 17 wickets, Abdul Rehman 12 and Mohammad Hafeez five. england's left-arm spinner Monty Panesar took seven wickets in the second Test while his spin partner Graeme Swann has fetched nine. But despite these statistics, Anderson refused to accept the spinfriendly nature of the pitches was discouraging for fast bowlers. "I don't think so," Anderson said on Wednesday. "Seamers have got plenty wickets, (Stuart) Broad bowled well in the last game and Umar Gul got four wickets in the first, so it is just that the spinners have outshone us in the first two Tests." Broad, who took 447 in the first innings of the second Test, has taken eight wickets in the series while Anderson's tally stands at five. Anderson said he was happy with england's bowling performance to date. "Our job is to get 20 wickets in any Test match and we thought it might be a difficult job here but probably we have exceeded our expectations in that department, so we are pretty pleased," said 29-year-old Anderson.

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Thursday, 2 february, 2012

Mohsin admits there is stiff competition in the squad LAHORE


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AKISTAN'S interim coach Mohsin Khan has admitted that there is stiff competition in the squad for the final xI ahead of the third Test against england. He added that making Pakistan's cricket competitive was his priority during his tenure as chief selector to ensure that the team had a back-up for every position and no player maintained a comfort zone mentality. "When I came into the role of Chairman of Selectors my priority was to have more competition for places and an environment where nobody felt that they were an automatic selection. An environment

Aisam to visit Lok Virsa Museum

where a player knew that if he was struggling for form or fitness then a suitable back up was ready to take his place," Pak Passion quoted Mohsin, as saying. "I wanted to have a backup for every position in the team and wanted to eradicate the comfort zone mentality and ensure that a ready-made replacement was there if a spot in the starting eleven became available," he added. He lauded Pakistan's cricketer Abdur Rehman who recorded the best Test scores in the Abu Dhabi game. "There is a lot of healthy competition now in Pakistan cricket for places in the starting eleven in every format. Abdur Rehman is a perfect example of this way of thinking, he knows that he has worked extremely hard to get to the

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Pakistan's ace tennis player Aisam-ul-Haq Qureshi will be visiting Lok Virsa Museum as part of his endeavour to showcase the cultural activities in the country. He has always tried his best to promote the cause of Pakistan at all platforms nationally as well as internationally, especially among the youth. “Not many people know that there exists a "Lok Virsa Museum" at Shakarparian Hills in Islamabad. This museum has excellent display of many objects of national independence movement,� a source close to Aisam said. Aisam will be visiting the arena at 6 PM on Thursday at Shakarparian Hill Islamabad to pay respect to the independent movement heroes of Pakistan.

Pakistan's former captain Shahid Afridi feels the team is capable of handing out a 3-0 whitewash to world number one england given the way it dominated the first two Tests. Pakistan enjoy an unassailable 2-0 lead over the english. "I think Pakistan will complete a clean sweep in the third Test. They can whitewash england," Afridi told reporters at a function to launch the autobiography of former chief selector Salahuddin Ahmed. Afridi said Pakistan enjoyed a psychological hold over the english batsmen. "I see this series as the best opportunity for Pakistan to win the series 3-0. As they keep on winning they are getting

hungrier for success and that is always the first sign of a team turning into a top class side," he said. "Another good thing is that all the players realise their responsibility and are contributing and supporting each other on the field." The all-rounder, who will join the team for the one-day and Twenty20 matches against england from next week, said Pakistani players have made winning a habit. "After winning the first two Tests, the morale and confidence in the team is very high," he added. Afridi, who was captain of the one-day side until last May, said that the way Pakistan are improving, they could soon match the feats of other great teams. "Pakistan has the potential to be as good as the Australians were at one time," he said.

Amar Cables beat gulberg gymkhana LAHORE STaff rEPOrT

LAHorE: Chief guest rizwan nisar presents the man of the match award to Dastgeer Butt while Amer Ilyas Butt, Coo Amar Cables looks on.

ISLAMABAD: Amer Pasha, country manager Visa Pakistan and Adam Thomson, British High Commission in Pakistan, give prizes to the participants of an exhibition football match organised by British HC, between Pakistan olympians and Paralympians to mark the start of six months to London olympics. The match was also participated by sports journalists, British, Brazilian and Chinese diplomats. STaff phOTO

Amar Cables beat Gulberg Gymkhana by 34 runs in the First Lahore Veteran Cricket Champion Trophy here at the Ali Garh Cricket Ground. Amar Cables batting first 216/6 after 30 overs. Dastgeer Butt 78 not out, Amer Ilyas Butt 21 not out, Ameer Akbar 47, Aziz-ur-rehman 40 not out & Munir Shah 13 runs. Afzal Munir 3/47, Azhar Hussain 2/18 & khalid Mehmood 1/33 wickets. In reply gulberg gykhana 182/8 after 30 overs. Afzal Munir 55, Azhar Hussain 32, Muhammad Amir 38 & Muhammad Zubair 31 runs. Tariq rasheed 2/29, Jahangir khan 2/42, rouf wain 2/23 & Munir Shah 1/22 wickets. rasheed Bhatti, Muhammad Asif Umpire, Zahoor Alam & qasim Shafique was the scorer. End of the match Chief guest rizwan nisar give away man of the match award to Dastgeer Butt. Amer Ilyas Butt also present.

west Zone prize distribution held LAHORE STaff rEPOrT

The prize distribution ceremony of the West Zone Cricket Association was held here at the Model Town Greens Cricket Club Ground in which cash and other prizes were awarded to the players of Regional Inter District 2011 champion team, West Zone Blue. On the occasion other prizes were also awarded to the players of West Zone Whites and the activities of the elected officials, the Zonal Presidents Syed Tauqeer Ali Shah, Shoaib Dar ,Khurram Hafiz and members of other sub committees was highly appreciated the office bearers of WZCA. Khawaja Nadeem, President LCCA was the chief guest while a large number of the members of the club affiliated with WZCA and other zones were present to witness the ceremony.


level he is at now and that he has no intention of letting his form dip and his fitness levels to drop," he added. Mohsin rejected claims that Pakistan's batting was one dimensional and negative. "I've been hearing and reading criticism of the Pakistani batting line up about it not being up to the mark and the lack of big scores. I agree to a certain extent that our batsmen did not go on and make a big score in Abu Dhabi but you have to realise that the opposition contains six top class batsmen in their ranks, professional, talented and experienced players, yet they struggled on that type of surface, so let's put things into perspective before criticising the Pakistani batsmen about their strike rates," he added.

pakistan can whitewash England

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Awais claims opening day honours in Punjab Cycling Awais Ali of Faisalabad claimed opening day honours in the 46th Punjab Cycling Championship that paddled off here on Wednesday. According to organizing secretary Qaisar Saddiq Bhatti, Awais Ali won two gold medals, 1km time trial and 4km individual pursuit. Syed Shahid Ali, IOC Member in Pakistan and President Punjab Olympic Association was the chief guest of the opening ceremony and awarded medals to the winners. Latif Butt, former secretary general Pakistan Olympic Association was also among the guests and presented a shield to the chief guest. OPENiNG daY rESulTS: At cycling velodrome results are as under: 1km Time Trial: Awais Ali faisalabad 1m 21S 50P, Tallah Babar Lahore 1m 24S 75P, Shafaqt Ali Multan 1m 34S 30P. 4km individual pursuit: Awais Ali faisalabad 6m 21S 90P, Sunny Lahore 6m 03S 97P, nasir gujranwala 6M 23S 03P.

guard rice get slender margin win LAHORE STaff rEPOrT

In the Caanchi and Lugari Polo Cup 2012, Guard Rice had a slender margin win over Newage Cables here at the Lahore Polo Club ground on Wednesday. Guard Rice having half a goal advantage got another seven goals in the field to beat Newage Cables which managed six in their hunt for an in vane cause. Hamza Mawaz Khan and Taimur Ali Malik managed two goals in the opening chukker for Guards and Shaukat Ali Malik had one for the Newage Cables. Taimur added another two in the next chukker but Shah Shamyl Alam and Santiago Mendivil kept the Newage hopes alive with the same number of goals. Raja Temur Nadeem, however, gave an edge to Guard Rice in the third chukker with a 60yarder, which was the only goal scored during that period in time. Santiago got three more goals for Newage to start the final chukker which provided his team a one goal lead. But Temur with his two back to back penalties got Guard Rice the win.

Chelsea refuse to give up chase SWANSEA afP

Andre Villas-Boas believes Chelsea are capable of closing the gap on the top three despite slipping seven points behind third-placed Spurs on Tuesday. An own goal from Neil Taylor in stoppage time spared Chelsea's blushes after their former winger Scott Sinclair had given Swansea City the lead six minutes before half-time. Chelsea, who had Ashley Cole sent off four minutes from time, for a second yellow card, have now taken only two points from their last two games, against Norwich and Swansea. "It is a gap that has grown tonight, but two weekends ago it was reduced," said Villas-Boas. "So, we go back to where we were before. A seven point gap is nothing in the Premiership. "It is never satisfying only to get a point, but Tottenham are still within our reach and let us see what we can do from here. "At the moment it makes no sense for me to speak about the league. We are competing for the Champions League and that is our main objective. "We will face what will probably be the new league leaders, next weekend, and after that game, we can see if the first spot is within our reach or not." Villas-Boas meanwhile was happy with Chelsea's transfer window dealings. "We strengthened in the most important position and we have made a deal for Gary Cahill which we pursued for some time," he said. "That was what we needed for the squad." Cahill started on the bench at the Liberty Stadium with Branislav Ivanovic preferred at the heart of the back four in the absence of John Terry. "There has been solidarity in our defensive displays of late and the team has been playing well. Because of that, we decided not to change the dynamic of the team for this game. "I spoke to Gary regarding the decision and it was well taken." VillasBoas was happy with his

side's overall performance and felt that his side could have gone on to win the game had they have scored a little earlier in a one-sided second half. "I think if the first goal had have come a little bit earlier, a second might have come because of the motivation and momentum we would have had. "But Swansea defended well and although we scored, we had no time to get the winning goal. "I thought Swansea were excellent. Their style collides a bit with what is cultural in english football, but we have to praise it. "I think first half we conceded the space to them and they are magnificent in finding those gaps. They play in between you, but when you press them it is more difficult for them." Villas-Boas was not too despondent about another goalless night for Fernando Torres who has gone 1,000 minutes without scoring. "I think the confidence is there. We have to persist with him and he helped the team today with his movement, his lay-offs and his passing. "So again, it is the same situation, we have to continue creating enough opportunities, maybe more." "Fernando and Didier Drogba are fighting for the striker's position so when Didier arrives back from the African Cup of Nations it will be further competition for Fernando." Swansea manager Brendan Rodgers praised his side's attitude. "I am very proud of the players and for them to feel so disappointed about not beating Chelsea, says it all. "We will deal with the disappointment well. That's the third big club we have had here in a row and we have drawn twice and beaten Arsenal. "You must remember also, that we have not lost two league games in a row all season. I think it is only us and Manchester City can say that. So, no, we won't have a hangover from the disappointment of this. "That's an incredible record and although we will reflect on tonight, it tells you about the mentality of this side."

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Thursday, 2 february, 2012

India remain winless in australia with T20 defeat SYDNEY afP

India have still to win on their Australia tour after losing the first of two Twenty20 internationals by 31 runs to the home side at the Sydney Olympic stadium on Wednesday. Before the biggest crowd for a single day's cricket in Sydney of almost 60,000, Australia rattled up 171 for four off their 20 overs after being sent into bat and reduced India to 140 for six. India were hoping to bounce back to form in the shorter version after being thrashed 4-0 in their Test series against Michael Clarke's Australians. Matthew Wade, who is keeping wicketkeeper Brad Haddin out of Australia's T20 and one-day teams, justified his selection with a manof-the-match performance with 72 off 43 balls and slick glovework behind the stumps. "I got a little taste for it a few months back in South Africa and I'm looking to take my opportunity batting at the top of the order with Dave (Warner)," Wade said. "It's always good to be scoring runs and I'm just looking to play my role in the team and I'll do that in Melbourne (T20 on Friday) and hopefully make my one-day debut in Melbourne (on Sunday) too." Wade smashed three sixes and five fours opening the innings with David Warner, who made 25 off 14 balls before he was the first wicket down. Warner, coming off Australia's

SCOrEBOard auSTralia: 25 d. Warner c raina b Vinay Kumar 72 M. Wade b raina 17 T. Birt c raina b ashwin d. hussey b Sharma 42 G. Bailey not out 12 M. Marsh not out 0 3 EXTraS: (lb1, w2) 171 TOTal: (4 wickets for; 20 overs) fall of wickets: 1-38 (Warner), 2-79 (Birt), 3-135 (Wade), 4-170 (hussey) BOWliNG: ashwin 4-0-34-1, Kumar 3-0-34-0, Vinay Kumar 4-0-28-1 (1w), raina 3-0-22-1, rahul Sharma 3.4-0-27-1 (1w), rohit Sharma 0.2-0-2-0, Jadeja 2-0-23-0 did not bat: d. Christian, J. faulkner, B. hogg, B. lee, X. doherty iNdia: 20 G. Gambhir c Marsh b hussey 4 V. Sehwag c hussey b lee 22 V. Kohli c Warner b hogg 14 S. raina b Christian 0 rohit Sharma b hussey M.S. dhoni not out 48 r. Jadeja c Warner b Christian 7 r. ashwin not out 15 10 EXTraS: (lb3, w6, nb1) TOTal: (6 wickets for; 20 overs) 140 fall of wickets: 1-6 (Sehwag), 2-47 (Gambhir), 3-53 (Kohli), 4-53 (rohit Sharma), 5-72 (raina) 6-81 (Jadeja) BOWliNG: lee 4-0-36-1 (4w), doherty 4-0-230 (1w), faulkner 2-0-18-0, Christian 4-0-35-2 (1nb), hussey 2-0-4-2, hogg 4-0-21-1 australia won by 31 runs Man-of-the-match: Matthew Wade (auS) Toss: india umpires: Bruce Oxenford (auS), Paul reiffel (auS) TV umpire: Simon fry (auS)

Test series win over India, thrilled the large crowd with an audacious six as he switched from his normal left handed grip to right hand to send the ball careering over deep extra cover into the stands. Warner hit two sixes and took 19 off Ravi Ashwin's second over before he was out when he skied Vinay Kumar to Suresh Raina at extra cover.

Wade raced to 70 before a rain delay affected his concentration and he was out two runs later after the restart in play. David Hussey cracked 42 off 30 balls with three sixes and a four before he was out attempting a big slog only to be bowled by Rahul Sharma on the penultimate delivery of the innings. India again started disastrously, losing Virender Sehwag on the third ball of Brett Lee's opening over for four and he was followed by a steady procession of teammates back to the dressingroom. Opening partner Gautam Gambhir made 20 off 14 balls and Virat Kohli was splendidly caught near the boundary ropes by Warner for 22 giving 40-year-old legspinner Brad Hogg his first wicket for Australia in four years. Rohit Sharma, who has waited all tour for a chance to bat for India in the Test series, was bowled for a first ball duck by David Hussey and Raina scored 14 off 15 balls before he was bowled by Dan Christian. Only skipper M.S. Dhoni showed any resistance with three sixes and a four in an unbeaten 48 off 43 balls, while Ashwin remained 15 not out. Christian and Hussey finished with two wickets each for Australia. The crowd of 59,659 broke the previous record of 58,446 set 83 years ago when Australia played england in a Test match at the Sydney Cricket Ground on December 15, 1928. The second T20 match takes place at the Melbourne Cricket Ground on Friday.

Pff ‘D’ Certificate Coaching Course begins

SUDnEY: India's MS Dhoni loses control of his bat during a T20 match against Australia. REUTERS

LAHORE: The Pakistan Football Federation in line with its emphasis on PFF Vision Plan 2020 and Youth Development Program is hosting PFF D Certificate Football Coaching Course at Qayyum Sports Complex, Peshawar. The five-day coaching course that started on Wednesday will be conducted by Akhter Mohi-ud-Din as Instructor and will conclude on February 5. Najeeb Ullah Najmi will act as Assistant Instructor, Salah-udDin Awan, Refree Instructor, and Course Coordinator will be Abdul Shakoor. Director General KPK Sports Board Khan Zaib Khan inaugurated the Course as chief guest and said: “The PFF is committed to provide football coaches from beginner to most advance with up-to-date theoretical, physical and practical knowledge for coaches from all regions i.e. Islamabad, Gilgit Baltistan, Azad Jammu & Kashmir (AJK) and FATA which can ensure that players develop their skill to full potential”. Zaib further added that KPK being the most fertile province for the game of football, this program at Peshawar is being given due importance which he hopes will bear fruit in the shortest possible time. The Course will enable the 24 participants to take this challenge. The participants are: Muhammad Tauseef (Lucki Marwat), Zubair Muhammad (Bannu), Sohail Ghaffar (Dir), Shafaat Ullah (Karak), Yasir Sarfraz (Abbotabad), Farman Ali (Bunner), Altaf Ahmed (Mardan), Adnan Khan (Noshehra), Umer Ahmed (Chitral), Yasrab Nawaz (Karak), Amjad Khan (Kohat), Aftab Alam (Haripur), Samiullah (D.I. Khan), Mahtab Ullah (Karak), S. Shafatullah (Hangu), Junaid Mahboob (Mansehra), Zia Ullah (Swabi), Yaqoob Khan (Peshawar), Shah Nawaz (Peshawar), Hussain Bukhsh (Peshawar), Jaffer Shah (Peshawar), Naqeebullah (Peshawar), Suleman Ghani (Peshawar), Shiraz (Charbagh). STaff rEPOrT

India in disarray as Pakistan blaze a trail Comment TANYA ALDRED Once upon a time there was a romantic, gifted, talented, charming cricket team, all wrist and nectar, rulers of the universe, World Cup winners and No1 Test nation. Not so far away was a team of unruly, ebony-maned scoundrels whose leader turned out to have his hand in the till, as did a couple of his most talented lieutenants. This team were nomads, forced to play their home matches across the water because of threats of terrorism, plagued by indiscipline and generally regarded as a bit of a rabble. And then, with three of their number awaiting trial and subsequently sent to jail, the scoundrels turned. They embraced discipline, a captain with a management degree and a coach who looks like Johnny Cash. They flirted with caution, successfully.

They released some inspired propaganda with the invention of the teesra. And in the 14 matches since Misbah-ulHaq took over the captaincy, they lost only one Test and won eight, including the two against the No 1 nation, england. Meanwhile, the team from Olympus fell suddenly and without warning to earth. India, so talented, so natural, have now lost their last two away Test series 80. Only Bangladesh, Zimbabwe and the West Indies during their lost decade have done worse in the last 80 years. everyone had said India’s away series against england would be close, it was not. Neutrals, nay Ian Chappell, thought they might at last win in Australia this southern summer — but the narrowest margin of defeat was 122 runs. India are sitting naked and cold in the empty bath and someone has run away with the towels. The stellar batting line-up has stalled: Sachin Tendulkar waits on for that elu-

sive 100th international century, Rahul Dravid, who batted beautifully in england, struggled in Australia and VVS Laxman, scourge of the baggy greens in times past, looked awkward and distracted. Virender Sehwag and Gautam Gambhir failed to stick together an opening partnership of more than 26 in eight innings. MS Dhoni, once so charismatic, is struggling, the younger players are finding it hard to flourish in a rusty team. There have been rumours of rifts, and outbreaks of ignoble behaviour. In India, the media can smell blood. They call for the axe, to fell the big three: Dravid, VVS, Tendulkar. The Indian people are not so sure. As Sharda Ugra, Cricinfo’s senior editor, says: “We are by and large a sentimental people. These are distinguished long-serving players, and they deserved dignified goodbyes. "At the moment they are bigger targets than the younger batsmen who have also failed. But logically speaking there

needs to be at least some consequences for an 8-0 thrashing.” What India seem to be so desperately searching for is what Ugra calls a firestarter. They need someone to stoke, and needle and prickle the team into a frenzy. Another Pakistani writer has written about how when Pakistan are on a roll they get into a state of haal — a higher consciousness recognised by Sufism, that we might more prosaically call the zone. Think of Pakistan on the last day at Abu Dhabi, or India during the tied World Cup match against england, or england at Headingley 1981. The players wind each other up into a sort of group excitement: you can smell in the wind that something is going to happen. What India have is Tendulkar, Dravid, Laxman — calm and serenity personified. Dhoni’s form is so flat that he lacks the energy for a spark of mischief. Duncan Fletcher has never pretended to be

outwardly charismatic (his partnership with Nasser Hussain worked so well because Hussain provided the explosives). Harbhajan Singh has been dropped, Yuvraj Singh is undergoing treatment for a tumour on his lung in the United States. There is no one to rub the flints urgently together. They seem at the moment to lack the ability to suddenly switch everything on. Despite the deification of the players this team have been watchable, loveable, since they beat Australia, then invincible, in 2000-2001. Following that series on teletext was a vicarious thrill. To see them suddenly human brings a real sadness, of time passing and talent spent. By the time they play their next away Test series in South Africa in late 2013 India and the world will have moved on. Virat Kohli, Cheteshwar Pujara, Ajinkya Rahane and Rohit Sharma will probably have replaced the familiar names. And those from the north-west may well have usurped the crown.

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Thursday, 2 february, 2012

MANCHESTER: Manchester United’s midfielder Park Ji-Sung (up) vies with Stoke City's Andy Wilkinson during the English Premier League football match. aFP

Spot on United as Stoke pay penalty MANCHESTER



AVIeR Hernandez and Dimitar Berbatov each claimed a penalty as Manchester United's 2-0 victory over Stoke drew them level with Manchester City at the top of the Premier League. With injury and illness to Anders Lindegaard and David de Gea, respectively, forcing United to hand a league debut to 21-year-old deputy Ben Amos, the penalty decisions ensured the defending Premier League champions enjoyed a comfortable evening. United took the lead after 38 minutes when Jermaine Pennant was judged to have tripped United's South Korean international midfielder Park Ji-Sung in the area. In the absence of regular penalty taker Wayne Rooney, who has failed on four of his last eight attempts, Hernandez strode up and calmly beat Thomas Sorensen with a shot into the bottom left-hand corner. Seven minutes into the second half, Antonio Valencia surged into the area with Jon Walters tugging at him from behind, a move which referee Mike Jones instantly deemed worthy of a penalty. This time, surprisingly given Hernandez's earlier success, Berbatov strode up to the mark and scored just as convincingly as his team mate had, low into the bottom right. The opening goal was inevitable in a game in which Stoke's primary aim appeared to be to test United's rookie goalkeeper with long-range shots. Walters chanced his arm from 25 yards and Kenwyne Jones volleyed wide from outside the box inside the opening 10 minutes. But the bulk of

Gabon maintain perfect run, Morocco deny Niger LIBREVILLE afP

Gabon continued their charmed run at the Africa Cup of Nations on Tuesday, toppling Tunisia to emerge from the first round with a perfect nine points. Gernot Rohr's already qualified side added the noted scalp of the 2004 winners to those of Morocco and Niger to finish winners of Group C and earn a quarter-final date with the Group D runners-up. With Ghana favourites to claim Group D that could prove a major boost to the co-hosts' outlandish bid bid to make it to the February 12th final. Day 11 saw simultaneous games being played in Franceville, where Pierre-emerick Aubameyang's' goal did it for 2004 winners Tunisia, and in the Gabon capital where the dead' tie between the two elim-

inated teams ended in a 1-0 win for Morocco over Niger. The nation's eyes though were trained on events in the country's second city where Aubameyang, one of the Panthers' main stars, bagged a 62nd minute goal when he collected a loose ball before wrong footing goalkeeper Rami Jeridi for his third goal of the competition. Tunisia fought to restore parity but the home heroes were resolute in defence to hold on for another famous victory. "This was our most difficult game so far against a very good Tunisia team, who dominated the game from start to finish," admitted Rohr. "It was not easy because we were already qualified for the quarterfinals. But thanks to the professional attitude and fighting spirit of the players, we won to finish top of the group." Tunisia coach Sami Trabelsi said: "We rested

frAnCEVILLE: Tunisian defenders Houcine ragued and Bilel Ifa shield gabonese skipper Michel Cousin (C) from the ball during the match between the two teams in franceville Stadium. gabon defeated Tunisia 1 - 0 to top group C in the African Cup of nations tournament. afp

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some of the players because they have already been booked and we did not wish to risk them before the quarter-finals. "However, those who played today showed many good qualities because we played well but we could not win the match." Aubameyang is now joint top scorer with Angola's Manucho and Morocco's Houcine Kharja, whose campaign ended prematurely and painfully when he was stretchered off with a knee injury in Libreville. Morocco denied Niger their first ever Nations Cup point when Younes Belhanda broke the deadlock 11 minutes from time - however the biggest cheer from a tiny crowd came earlier when television images showed Gabon scoring. Morocco coach eric Gerets said his players had given him the respone he was hoping for after getting knocked out with defeats to Gabon and Tunisia. "We are like a boxer in the ring who gets a kick in the head, he's down but he will stand up and fight again," the Belgian said. "The crisis after the second game (32 defeat to the co-hosts) was terrible, but the players stood up and showed the first signs of life tonight, that's what I needed to see. "My players tried to leave this Nations Cup with their heads held high, having said that our campaign was catastrophic." With 2014 World Cup qualifying starting in June the Belgian confirmed he would not be walking away from his job. Rolland Courbis, the team consultant who assumed control of Niger from manager Harouna Doula after their shambolic opening loss to Gabon, said Morocco had deserved to win. Like Gerets a former coach of Marseille Courbis added: "Niger has lots of qualities and limits, but we were in a difficult group, I wouldn't be surprised if one of the two qualified teams goes alll the way."

the first period was spent with United patiently trying to break down Stoke's dogged resistance. Paul Scholes teed up Michael Carrick for a promising early shot which was charged down by Ryan Shawcross and another Carrick strike won a 21st minute corner. That resulted in Scholes shooting from outside the area sending a fierce strike just wide of the post and into the advertising hoardings. Patrice evra appealed in vain for a penalty after his run into the area was halted by slight contact from Dean Whitehead and Berbatov's telling pass then freed Valencia down the right but his cross was too close to Sorensen who parried the ball to safety. Carrick then linked intelligently with Park and Berbatov before rolling a left-foot shot inches wide, a miss followed moments later by the opening goal. even after taking the lead from the penalty, United might have had a second spotkick when a Hernandez cross struck Shawcross's hand although referee Jones clearly viewed the infringement as accidental. After Chris Smalling created an early second half opening for Berbatov, which was charged down by the visiting defence, Jones finally decided United merited a second penalty and, thereafter, the game looked well beyond Stoke. Pennant's free-kick almost presented Jones with a chance and the Stoke winger also crossed well for substitute Cameron Jerome whose header was first fumbled, then saved on the line, by Amos. Amazingly, it appeared that United should have had a third penalty decision after evra appeared to be brought down by Whitehead after 70 minutes following another flowing passage of play.


former women's world number one Caroline wozniacki has parted company with her Spanish coach ricardo Sanchez after only two months of collaboration, the Ekstra Bladet daily reported on wednesday. The decision, announced by wozniacki's father and confirmed by Sanchez, comes after her elimination in the quarter-finals at the Australian open, which saw her fall to fourth place in the wTA ranking. In December, Sanchez broke off his partnership with Serbian former world number one Jelena Jankovic to work with wozniacki, who had dropped her father, Piotr, as her coach in August. "we decided to evaluate the collaboration and we agreed to bring it to an end," Piotr wozniacki told Ekstra Bladet. Sanchez told the newspaper that the decision was due to his differences with wozniacki's father, who had been the Dane's only previous coach. "I have great respect for Piotr, who has never played tennis himself, and for the work he has done," said Sanchez. "But he has his way of doing things, and I have mine." Sanchez added that "Caroline was just confused" by having two coaches "who wanted different things". Despite the failure of her partnership with Sanchez, Caroline wozniacki has not ruled out taking on a new coach, according to her father. "If Caroline finds a coach that she thinks might suit her, we'll take him," he said.

waTCh IT LIve STAR SPORTS Women’s T20: Australia V New Zealand 08:30AM

TEN SPORTS Italian Serie A: Udinese V Lecce 12:40AM

Punjab Sports festival in full swing LAHORE STaff rEPOrT

The Punjab Sports Festival 2012 entered its 10th day with the competitions being held successfully throughout the provincial union councils. In Lahore’s Union Council 93, badminton tournaments were held with Shehriar beating Mohammed Bilal 2-0, in UC 10, fiaz beat Mohammed Awais 2-0, in UC 5, Arslan defeated Hassan 2-0, in UC 9, Hamza beat Azad khan 20, in UC 92, khalique outplayed Zubair 2-0, in UC 90, Zubair khan beat Hamza 2-0, in UC 93, Zubair beat Jawad 2-0, in UC 11, Shokat outplayed Zahid 2-0 and UC 93, Bilal defeated Inam 2-0. In the cricket matches, Mohammed Akbar xI from UC 28, Imran xI from UC 30, faisal xI from UC 68, Sheraz xI from UC 80 and Zahid from UC 69 won their respective matches. In Model Town, UC 130 badminton teams participated in which nadeem Park defeated Mughal club 2-0. In Cantt/Shalamar, UC 41 team participated in which Combined xI beat Sajad xI, Hassan Abbas xI scored Chaudhry xI by 3 runs. Combined xI scored 63 runs win against Universal xI. In football UCs 41, 43, 44, 45, 48, 54 and 55 got walkover. In athletics, UC 44, 5 players participated in four events, In UC 44, eight players participated in 5 events, in UC 48, 8 players participated in 6 events. The winning players were Sadaat, Mohammed Yasin, Aslam, Awais, Abdul Sami and Mazhar Awais. In cricket, UC 41 waqar beat Imran 15-8. Maqsood beat khalid 6-5. Asim beat Sanaullah 9-5. In UC 43, rana Aslam beat Mohammad Maqsood 15-8. Sultan Ali beat khalid Hussain 15-2. Hafiz Abbas beat Shoaib 15-6. In UC 44, Mazhar, Aslam, Shoaib and Tahir were the winners. In UC 48, Tariq beat Hammad 15-8, Mohsin beat Bilal 15-4, faisal beat farukh 15-0. In UC 54, Aslam Butt beat Mohsin 15-9, Usman Pervez beat Zubair 15-6. nadeem beat Abbas 15-4. In gujranwala, 16 union councils participated in cricket, 8 union councils in volleyball, 10 in football, 4 in kabaddi and 24 in badminton. In faisalabad, 39 union councils participated in cricket, 21 in badminton, 10 in hockey, 5 in football, 14 in kabaddi and 18 in volleyball. Similarly a large number of union councils are participating in all cities at union councils level throughout Punjab. The union council events phase will conclude on february 2, (today) while the next phase of the events at Tehsil level will start from february 4 till 15.

Wozniacki parts

company with coach

LHR 02-02-2012_Layout 1 2/2/2012 5:22 AM Page 22

Thursday, 2 february, 2012


sPurious drugs issuE

Shahbaz points finger at ‘someone’ in Islamabad Cm says PiC deaths were caused by too much anti-malaria medicine in isotab drug g



STaff rEPOrT

UNJAB Chief Minister Shahbaz Sharif on Wednesday said that during the outbreak of the dengue virus, “a high profile personality of Islamabad” had conspired to send back the medical team of a friendly country from Lahore and he was now ready to expose this conspiracy in the Supreme Court. Talking to reporters at a press conference on the issue of deaths caused by spurious drugs, Shahbaz said the cause of the reaction and deaths from the use of spurious drugs distributed by the Punjab Institute of Cardiology (PIC) had been ascertained and the analysis report by the British Regulatory Agency of the samples of medicines had been received. He said according to the report, a large quantity of the drug for the treatment of malaria had been found in the medicine ‘Isotab’,

supplied by effroze Chemical Industries, a Karachi-based pharmaceutical company. excessive use of this medicine affected the bone marrow and if this process was not controlled, it might result in the death of the patient, the CM added. He said according to the report received from Britain, the quantity of antimalaria medicine pyrimethamine, manufactured by effroze Chemical Industries, was 14 times more than the usual quantity. He said a thorough investigation would be carried out at every level to determine whether it was a conspiracy or a disastrous mistake. Shahbaz said the reports regarding analysis of the medicines would be presented to the judicial commission and the Supreme Court, and would also be made public. POLITIcS ON DEAD BODIES: He said the opposition should show sense and not indulge in politics based on dead bodies. He said that people would foil the nefarious designs of the conspir-

ators as they had done during the outbreak of dengue, and undeterred by the intrigues of the opposition, the Punjab government would continue to serve the ailing humanity. The CM said that immediately after receiving the report about the reaction of the harmful medicines, a comprehensive strategy was adopted and effective measures were taken. He said samples of the drugs were sent to Britain and various european countries by hand so that facts could be ascertained in the light of the reports of impartial international laboratories. He said not only doubtful medicines but the samples of blood, bone marrow and the skin of the patients and the deceased persons were also sent to Britain. He said this strategy proved fruitful and through these samples european experts reached the conclusion that these patients had used anti-malaria medicine excessively. He said because of the efforts of the government and the hard work of doctors, the cause of the reaction and the resultant deaths had been determined within a month. He said after receiving the report from Britain, specialist doctors, pharma-

cists and experts of Punjab started to contemplate measures to counter the effects of the medicine. He said after hard work and consultation with foreign experts through video conferencing, the antidote to the spurious drug, Folnic Acid and Calcium Folinate, had been found and were

pakistan exerting insufficient pressure on militant groups: CIa WASHINGTON: Pakistan was exerting insufficient pressure on militant groups, including the Haqqani network, Afghan Taliban and some other allies of al Qaeda, Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) Director General (r) David Petraeus has said. “There’s been insufficient pressure on the Haqqani network, on some of the other elements, the allies of al Qaeda such as the

Commander Nazir group, the IMU and then some others,” Petraeus told US lawmakers. “Then needless to say, the Afghan Taliban has not been pressured sufficiently in the sanctuaries that it enjoys in Balochistan and in other areas as well,” Petraeus said in response to a question at a Congressional hearing at the Senate Select Intelligence Committee, chaired by Senator Dianne Fein-

stein, who said Pakistan remained a huge problem. “The Taliban’s senior leaders continue to enjoy safe haven in Pakistan,” she said. “To me, Pakistan is a very puzzling country. We know that thousands of Pakistanis have been killed by terrorists, and we suspect that what Pakistan is doing is trying to essentially, to use a vernacular, walk both sides of the street,” she said. ONLINE

govt slammed for increasing fuel prices ISLAMABAD STaff rEPOrT

The government came under fire in the Senate and the National Assembly on Wednesday where up-in-arms parliamentarians, including those from the Muttahida Qaumi Movement (MQM), took it to task over massive increase in prices of petroleum products and walked out of both Houses of parliament in protest. The three major coalition partners of the Pakistan People’s Party (PPP), the MQM, the Pakistan Muslim League-Quaid (PML-Q) and the Awami National Party (ANP), strongly protested against the increase in POL prices and demanded a reversal of the government’s decision, the MQM staging a token walkout from the Senate and National Assembly on the issue. The PMLNawaz (PML-N) also staged a walkout from both Houses against increase in POL prices, accompanied by PPPSherpao and some lawmakers from the PML-Likeminded. Petroleum Minister Dr Asim Hussain said in his brief statement that prices of petrol and diesel were not in the hands of the government as OGRA calculated it on a monthly basis according to a formula. “When there is change in oil prices in the international market, when there is change in dollar-rupee parity, there will be a change in oil prices,” he added. He said that General Sales Tax (GST) and petroleum levy (PL) were part of the Money Bill and added that if anyone wanted to reverse it, they could choose a legal option. Senator Tahir Mashhadi of the MQM shouted at the minister, saying he had misinformed the Senate and twisted the facts, and announced a walkout in protest. Senator Ishaq Dar also contradicted the petroleum minister’s statement, saying he should give a breakdown of the petroleum prices so as to determine the actual price of the petroleum products and the tax the government had imposed on it “to mint money”. Later, the PML-N, Jamiat Ulema-e-Islam-Fazl (JUI-F), PMLLikeminded and the Jamaat-e-Islami (JI) also staged a walkout from the House in protest against the raised prices of fuel. In the National Assembly, speaking on a point of order, PML-N MNA Ahsan Iqbal said the recent increase in POL prices was made against the recommendations of OGRA. Separately, the MQM staged a walkout from the Lower House to register its protest against the increase in POL prices. Published by Arif Nizami for Nawa Media Corporation (Pvt) Ltd at Qandeel Printing Press, 4 Queens Road, Lahore.

Editor: Arif Nizami, Executive Editor: Sarmad Bashir

now available in the form of injections. Shahbaz said no laboratory from Peshawar to Karachi had been able to detect the mixing of anti-malaria medicines in the Isotab, and it would be thoroughly investigated whether it was a conspiracy or a result of bribery and corruption.

E-paper Pakistantoday LHR 2nd February, 2012  


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