Viewpoint by: Cllr Ibrar Hussain Page 4
Overseas Students Hardships Page 6
Justice Delayed is Injustice Page 11
CUT PIECE Page 20-21
SHEFFIELD MAYOR DEBATE IS YET TO IGNITE - BUT ARE BIG EGOS WAITING? Quiet referendum campaign in South Yorkshire with London's ego-driven shenanigans. But could these come north if the steel city votes YES to a directly elected mayor?
Along with five other cities in the north, and six elsewhere, the people of Sheffield are being given the chance to decide if we want to have an elected Mayor. If a majority votes Yes on 3 May, then a contest for the new position will be held in November. The campaign has not been very high profile. We doubt many Sheffield people even know that the matter is up for decision. This is tragic. Yet again. politics has been left out in the cold. Is that the fault of an apathetic public or of narcissistic political actors?
also concerned that an elected mayor would be in the position for four years, with no mechanism in the legislative to remove them. Check out Doncaster, they said, for one possible set of consequences. Meanwhile the YES campaign was launched with universally homemade placards. Kevin Meagher, chairman of Sheffield Irish Association and a member of the GMB and Unison unions, is one of those backing the Yes side. The campaign focuses on modernising the city's politics, he says, and dragging them out of a system which is based in the 19th century.
have the funds to stage anything spectacular. Then there is a lack of a platform in which to debate the subject. Limited coverage in the local press has not helped. Social media has been quiet and there just does not seem to be an appetite for the subject. But is this the failing of the politicians themselves? Last week we witnessed the spectacle of what has become a farcical ego-driven mayoral contest in London.
Politics is about personality, but we the voters need to make sure that this does not become bigger than Sheffield's Conservative party is also backing the the issues involved. There has been media coverage The arguments for the No campaign have been Yes vote. The main rhetoric from the Tories is that of the issues in London, but time and again it comes voiced by, among others, the union Unison. A mass an elected mayor will put power back into the hands back to Boris and Ken. Genuine arguments someof semi-professional and handmade posters and of Sheffield people and that a directly elected mayor times, but always linked about those egos. placards bobbed up and down outside the town hall will be accountable to them. Local members appear Well, grandstanding is what an elected mayor is at the launch of a campaign entitled 'Nightmayor'. to be following the party line on this issue and have probably supposed to do. Paul Scriven in action. The protesters' main argument focused on the cost had plenty of time to discuss it. It was the Localof the mayor's office - ÂŁ400,000 they claimed. ism Bill, introduced by the coalition government Is this what is coming our way if Sheffield elects to They also raised questions as to whether the present in 2010, which included the measures to give 12 have the Mayoral system? Do not rule out our own system of a cabinet needs changing. cities around the country the powers to have elected version of an ego-fuelled contest which bypasses mayors if voters approved. the real politics of real peoples lives. If there is a The local Labour party's stance is a unanimous Yes vote, it will be interesting to see who comes NO. The Opposition leader Ed Miliband on the So the low-profile campaign so far has produced forward for election in November: old New Labour subject and he said that it was up to local Labour some strange political bedfellows. It is not that often politicians such as David Blunkett? More contemcouncillors to decide whether they wanted to back a that you find the Tories on the same side as some porary local politicians such as the Liberal Demomayoral system of governance. prominent members of unions. crats' Paul Scriven. Others who have played a major part in recent civic affairs. Might they even tempt They said that their main objection concerned the As for the lack of a excitement, that could down back Sir Bob Kerslake from his august position in future running of the city, especially the worry to money, or lack of it. There is none. Movements London to God's own county? about power being in one person's hands. They were such as the Yes and No campaigns in the city do not
NOMINATIONS FOR 2012 LOCAL ELECTIONS Candidates have been announced for this year’s local elections in May. A total of 149 candidates will be standing for election across the 28 wards in Sheffield – a third of the city’s seats - on Thursday 3 May. This year 12 of the current members are not seek-
ing re-election. Of the seats up for election in May, 17 are currently held by the Liberal Democrats, 10 by Labour and one by the Green Party. The political make-up of the City Council is currently 50 seats held by the Labour Party, 32 by the Liberal
Iltaf Hussein LibDem NetherEdge
Democrats and two by the Green Party. Parliament has also decided that 10 of the largest cities in England outside London should have a referendum on having a directlyelected mayor - both Leicester and Liverpool have already cho-
Mohammed Akbar Labour Central
PERMIT HIKE Local residents were left disappointed after Labour councillors on Sheffield City Council vetoed a Lib Dem plan to reverse hikes in the charges for residents parking permits. The Labourrun Council are planning fee increases for parking permit zones of up to 300%. Parking permit fees are doubling for both a household’s first car (from £10 to £20) and a second car (from £30 to £60). Fees are also doubling for carers to park outside the home of those they care for and the price of books of visitor permits will increase by 300%. The issue is particularly embarrassing for local Labour MP, Paul Blomfield, who, in 2009, campaigned to lower fees for residents parking permit zones.
University To Have Alcohol-Free Areas For Muslims A university Vice-Chancellor is planning to ban the sale of alcohol in parts of the campus because some Muslim students believe it is "evil" and "immoral". Prof Malcolm Gillies of London Metropolitan University said he wants to create alcohol free areas on campus out of “cultural sensitivity”. About a fifth of students at the university come from Muslim families – many of them young women from traditional homes. For many of them, the drinking culture among students marred rather than heightened their student experience, he said. His comments were welcomed by anti-alcoholism campaigners and the Methodist Church, which has a strong tradition of campaigning against excessive drinking. He also said that his experience showed that, contrary to popular perceptions, many students – including Muslims - are much more conservative than those a generation ago.
Mohammed Zahur Lib Dem Central
sen to have an elected mayor and will not be holding a referendum. If the people of Sheffield decide to opt for a directly-elected mayor, there would be mayoral elections on 15 November 2012 on the same date as the Police and Crime commisioner elections.
Tasadique Mohammed Lib Dem Darnall
From the Pakistani Asian community we are proud to announce 7 candidates are standing for election. THE British National Party has not put forward a single election candidate for the Sheffield Council elections in May - the first
Abdul Qayum JP Labour Crookes
time in a decade they have been unrepresented at the polls. Mainstream politicians and anti-fascist campaigners have hailed it a victory for voters, who they say have ‘completely rejected’ the far-right party.
Hafeas Rehman Labour Crookes
British Mothers are Now Compelled to Work As their families struggle to make ends meet, several British mothers are being forced to return to work, according to Britain's employment minister Chris Grayling. The demise of the traditional housewife looking after her young family was one "very obvious" trend from the current labour market; the Daily Mail quoted him as saying. "I think we are seeing more stay-at-home mums saying, 'I
think I'll look for a part-time job'," said Grayling. Asked if such mothers were returning to work for financial reasons, the minister said: "I suspect so". According to figures from Britain's Office for National Statistics, the number of 'inactive' women, meaning who neither have a job nor they want one, has dropped dramatically. Over the last year, the statistics of those
aged between 16 and 64 has fallen by 71,000. But, at the same time, unemployment among women has increased by 82,000, the figures show. The number of unemployed women in Britain has reached 1.12 million, an unprecedented figure in last 25 years. It means that many mothers who earlier remained stay-athome mums are now struggling to find decent work due to the embattled job market.
British Teachers Wish To Prosecute Students British teachers have called for prosecuting students who falsely accuse them of assaults following concern over a rising number of malicious allegations. The teachers' trade unions want pupils be routinely reported to the police after making unfounded claims simply to get their own back on teachers.
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News in Brief
Council Tax Collection Rate Increases Rotherham Borough Council has upped its council tax collection rate for the third year running! A total of 97.7 per cent of Council Tax across the Borough was collected for 2011/12, which is up 0.3 per cent on the previous year making it the third consecutive year of improvement.
Director of Financial Services, Stuart Booth, described it as an excellent result for both the staff involved and the council tax-paying members of the public. He added: "Our staff have worked very hard to get in as much Council Tax as possible because they know it makes it much fairer for all those who do pay.”
Pensioners to Get 300 Pounds Hike
Millions of pensioners in Britain will get an annual hike of over 300 pounds. In the wake of the "granny tax" row, Prime Minister David Cameron has said the increase showed the government's commitment to elderly people. Average payments will rise to 124 pounds a week for single people while couples will now receive 172 pounds.
"I know these are difficult times but my promise to pensioners is that we are on your side." said Cameron. The basic state pension rises by 5.30 pounds a week to about 107 pounds. For couples, the increase is 8.50 pounds a week while pension credit for those with modest savings increases by about five pounds.
Training Camp: From Russia with Love Sheffield has a spring in its step after signing its biggest pre Olympic Games training camp to date. Six rhythmic gymnastics teams including gold medal favourites Russia have committed to training in the city to prepare for the Games. The camp at the Motorpoint Arena, estimated to bring
£250,000 of economic benefit to the city, will include Russia, Japan, Korea, Uzbekistan, Kazakhstan and Azerbaijan. The Russian team is odds on favourite to win gold in London, and for them to come and train in Sheffield is a fantastic achievement for the city. Sheffield is limbering up to welcome them in July.
West Yorkshire Police helicopter's vital crime-fighting role The West Yorkshire Police helicopter helped to locate 150 wanted people and vehicles worth more than a quarter of a million pounds in the Bradford district last year. Latest figures released by the Force show the helicopter, call sign X-Ray 99, clocked up more than 1,200 flying hours in the aerial hunt for wanted criminals, missing people and general evidence- gathering. Throughout West Yorkshire, between April 1, 2011, and March 31 this year, the helicopter flew a total of 1,233 hours, carried out 3,866 tasks, helped to locate 788 wanted people, as well as 46 missing people, and 97 vehicles. In the Bradford South and Airedale and North Bradford Divisions, the aircraft attended 678 incidents and flew for a total of 228 hours, during which 150 wanted people were located, along with 29 vehicles valued at £237,520. John Whittaker, executive officer for the Force helicopter, said: “The helicopter has helped out in many and varied important cases across Bradford. “It helped to locate a Ravenscliffe woman who had fallen down a cliff and was injured and required immediate assistance. And when a Bradford woman called a friend to say she was suicidal, it was the crew of X-Ray 99 that helped find her and bring her to safety. These are just two jobs where the helicopter has proven invaluable in an emergency situation.”
Bin Fund PLEA Lib Dem councillors are urging Labour-run Sheffield City Council to apply for the Coalition Government’s weekly bin collection fund, as Councils queue up to cash in. Labour councillors on Sheffield City Council have voted to end weekly black bin collections, despite the availability of £250 million Government fund to retain the service. Labour councillors are so far refusing to save the
weekly collection. about funding cuts, then turn Cllr Shaffaq Mohammed, Leader their noses up to Government of the Lib Dem Group on Shef- support is unfair on the people of Sheffield. If this fund is good enough for Labour councillors in Wolverhampton, why won’t Labour councillors in Sheffield apply? “I’ve spoken to hundreds of local residents and families who are outraged that they are losing weekly bin collections. It’s disappointing that Labour councillors are more interested in petfield City Council, said: “For ty political games than the needs Labour councillors to complain of local people.”
VIEWPOINT: by Cllr Ibrar Hussain
The people of Sheffield will make two vital choices on May 3rd. The first is who they would like to see as their local Councillor. The second is whether or not people want an “elected Mayor”. It’s fair to say that there hasn’t been a lot of interest in the elected mayoral vote at all. On the whole, the people in Sheffield that I talk to seem happy with the current system of elected Councillors, who choose a Council Leader. Most people don’t want an expensive and all-powerful politician that they can’t get rid of. It also lets in more extremist parties. An elected Mayor would be bad for Sheffield, because it would put far too much power in the
hands of one person. Checks and balances are really important, so this is very bad for democracy. Elected Mayors are also very expensive. Some estimates suggest that over the course of a four year term a Mayor could cost Sheffield around a Million pounds. At a time of massive cuts, Mayors are just far too expensive, because that money would have to be found from somewhere else. You are also stuck with the Mayor for Four years – regardless of how good the people of Sheffield or their elected representatives think the Mayor is doing. In North Tyneside, the Mayor and the Council couldn’t agree on a budget and there was awful gridlock that stopped getting impor-
tant things done. I represent Burngreave ward with Cllr Jackie Drayton and Cllr Talib Hussain, so I see first-hand how Jackie and Talib are locally rooted in a real community, the community where they grew up and where their parents and family live. As a local Councillor, they have to deal with community issues and problems. A Mayor doesn't have a ward to represent, so they don't have those local experiences to keep them grounded. Politicians very quickly become much more distant and isolated in a Mayoral system. There are currently 13 elected Mayors in England. Lots of places that have had them (like
Stoke) have already got rid of them. At the same time, other places (like Doncaster) are also considering it. Mayors don’t cure all the problems that an area faces and almost always create a whole range of new problems. We already have a Mayor in Sheffield and we've had one for well over a century. The Lord Mayor is a fantastic ambassador for Sheffield and well-known across the city for their good work and donations to charity. We would lose all of that if we made the Mayor a political role, Cities like Leeds, Manchester, Liverpool and Sheffield have seen massive regeneration and improvements during the last decade; these successes were all achieved without a Mayor. Sheffield is a great city and I want it to achieve even more in years to come. An elected Mayor is a distraction from the real issues. It puts far too much power in to the hands of one person who you can’t get rid of. It is also very expensive and makes politics much more remote. If Sheffield votes for an elected Mayor we would also lose all of the benefits we have from the current Lord Mayor. That’s why I will be voting to keep the current system and I hope you will do the same on 3rd may, so please join me.
Galloway Making Waves George Galloway returned to the House of Commons insisting he was “just the advance party for the army mustering in the North”. The Bradford West MP, who overturned a 5,000 majority to storm home with a 10,000-vote lead in the March by-election, claimed voters were "alienated and discontented". Speaking at Parliament's St Stephen's entrance, the Respect MP vowed to use his first week back in the Commons to raise the war in Afghanistan, likening it to Vietnam. He said: "It is good to be back but I'm just the advance party. There's an army mustering in the North and in the great industrial and post-industrial cities of this country, an army of discontented, alienated people who feel that this place has let them down, it has failed the country and it has failed the people.” He added: "We have to get out of Afghanistan." Mr Galloway's Bradford West win was one of the biggest byelection shocks of modern times. He polled 18,341 votes to the 8,201 for Labour candidate Imran Hussain. He told reporters that Bradford was "bitterly sinking into a blackhole" in comparison to the progress being made in neighbouring Leeds but since he had been elected the "Bradford Bulls have won four games in a row and Bradford City Football Club has won". In other controversial news, George Galloway has denied
claims he had converted to Islam at a secret ceremony more than a decade ago. The maverick MP took part in the “shahadah” conversion ceremony, attended by members of the Muslim Association of Great Britain, at a hotel in Kilburn, London, it was claimed by Jemima Khan. Jemima Khan, who converted to Islam ahead of her failed marriage to cricketer Imran Khan, claimed in an article for the New Statesman she knew someone who had attended the event. But the Bradford West MP, who has repeatedly refused to answer questions about his faith, dismissed it as “totally untrue”. In the days ahead of his shock landslide by-election victory last month, a letter - which Mr Galloway denies being behind went out to voters highlighting his record of support for Palestine, his work for “the freedom of Kashmir” and his abstention from alcohol. It added: “God knows who is a Muslim. And He knows who is not. Instinctively so do you.”
Stay-at-home dads: More men choosing kids over career The Knowledge of Letters (ILM e HAROOF) is an extensive universe yet we find rare people possessing it. A number of people make fun of it while reading or listening about it. Others do not believe in the effectiveness of Letters. Interestingly every human do believe that any medicine given by a doctor does have effects to cure but they never think that from where this effectiveness has come into these medicines. Who has put the effect of cure in medicines. The simples answer is that these medicines are just a piece of dust if God does not put the ability to cure in medicines. The God who has given the ability to cure in medicines is the creator of Letters (Haroof). Now it depends in the hands of the person who is gifted to use the Letters. Remember gold and silver are just metals in unwrought and imperfect condition unless and until they are not touched by the hands of a person who has the knowledge to shape these into jewellery. The knowledge to change the shape of these imperfect metals to show their beauty makes them very costly. Similarly Letters (Haroof) are.
A letter ALEF فلاhas many kinds of effects hidden in it but one needs artistry and mastery to use these effects. In ancient times selected people have spent hundreds of years in exploring the effects of these letters on every creation. We have to keep in our mind that everything becomes valuable when it is used at its suitable place. If you want a pretty ornament for a woman it is necessary to select a proper metal for this purpose. The metal should be soft and gold is perfect for this. If we make the same ornament with iron it will not fulfil our desire and it will look inelegancy. One must know the value of a Letter and where and how it should be used to achieve our goal.
In holy Quran we find many occasions where single letters are used at the start of a verse. Here we mention the word NOON نونwhich is highly consecratory letter. The Surah Al Qalam starts with the letter NOON نون. The Surah starts with : نورطسی ام و ملقلاو ن. The Almighty ALLAH has closed and covered immensurable sea of meanings and aims in this holy verse. No one is fully able to measure the complete depths of holy Quran but it has explicated as much as human intelligence and knowledge can work. It is written by ancient spiritual scholars that word NOON نون is not just a mere letter. If it is performed according to the laws Lets take a look at the Letter of spirituality then a human can ALEF فلا. This comes as the make not only Elf and Homo but first alphabet in word ALLAH also Angels his followers. but also is the first alphabet in the word Iblees. Letter is same The letter NOON نونis the but its use and place is making twenty fifth letter according to it most powerful with word AL- the solar alphabet system (shamLAH and most valueless with si tarteeb) and stands at fourth word Iblees. The one small letter place for progress. According has great positive powers while to the solar alphabet system this on the other hand has negative letter belongs to planet Jupiter. powers too. The person who has Some spiritual teachers say that the knowledge about the puis- the letter NOON نونbelongs sance of letters can understand to planet Moon and our research the power and right place of the also says the same that it belongs
to Moon. We would now like to give a Talisman of word NOON نونso that a person can achieve prosperity and success in life. We are writing here details for using this talisman or amulet. Take some Saffron (azafran) and put its petals in the rose water to make a mixture. Take a pen or wood stick to write. On a white paper write this amulet for 217 times daily for 21 days. Keep all these amulets at a safe place. On the 22 day write the same amulet for 235 times. Select a time that suits you for writing. Please note that you have to write all the amulets on the same time on which you started to write on the first day. A delay of 2 to 5 minutes does not matter. At the bottom of the amulet write your purpose for which you are making it. Here we give two examples how you can write your purpose ‘’ Saeed (a) bin (t) Naseema ko sehat hasil ho’’ Or ‘’ Saeed (a) bin (t) Naseema ke rizq mein ezafa ho’’.
Now roll each and every amulet to make small balls. Put every amulet in the flour and cover the amulet completely one by one. Take all these amulet balls and throw in running water such as sea, river or lake. If you do not have running water in your city or village, then you can bury these amulet balls.
Among fathers with a wife in the workforce, 32% took care of their kids at least one day a week in 2010, according to the U.S. Census Bureau, which looked at families with children under 15 years old. That's up from 26% in 2002.
Please note that during these 22 days you must avoid taking any kind of meat, milk, yogurt and butter.
Not only has it become more necessary for men to pitch in at home, but fathers have also become more available to do so. "It's a combination of mothers going to work and fathers being out of work as a result of the recession," said Lynda Laughlin, a family demographer at the Census Bureau.
From the 23 day write this amulet for 22 times daily to make your relation strong with the amulet. Now there is no need to abnegate (taking meat etc.) you can start eating normally.
Of those with kids under the age of 5, 20% of dads in 2010 were the primary caretaker.
If someone makes it his or her daily exercise then it is promise that he or she will not struggle for anything in the life.
Men were particularly hard hit by the steep job losses during that time, losing 4 million jobs since 2007, while women lost just over 2 million during the same time period, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Moms: 'I can't afford to work'
Are you facing any problem? And your mind and heart are unable to give the right solution then come and use our Spiritual Solutions Service.
While men have since gained back a majority of those jobs during the recovery, their unemployment rate -- at 8.3% in March -- is still above the national average of 8.2%.
On the 22 day take all the amulets which should be now 4792 in Visit us at www.ilmnews.com/ quantity. Take flour that is used spiritualsolutions/scn.html to make Chapatti. Prepare the flour as we use to make chappati.
Many find that having one parent at home does have its advantages, especially as child care costs continue to climb.
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PROPERTY Q & A
Mohammed Nazir Solicitor Head of Property/Immigration, Wosskow Brown
Q. I have gone with a firm of solicitors that the Estate Agents have recommended, in faith that the transaction will run smoothly, however I have found this not to be the case and I have also been charged a referral fee? Should I have paid for this?
this normal? A. Yes, It is the owners’ responsibility to ensure that all electrical work meets the requirements of Part P (Domestic Electrical Safety) namely to be designed, installed, inspected and tested by a person competent to do so. These regulations where brought into force in January 2005 and therefore any works done after this date must be assessed and certified by a qualified person who will provide you with an Electrical Installation Certificate.
A. No, you have the right to choose any legal representative that you like, it is always best to shop around and obtain quotes. If the Agents are to get a referral fee from the elected solicitors then this should be paid for by their firm (from their fees) and not you as an individual as is not part of I have recently had a new the legal service you are receiving Q. boiler installed and I am confrom the solicitors. cerned that I did not receive a Q. I am selling my house and CORGI Certificate? I have been asked to provide an The Gas Safe Register electrical certificate for re-wiring A. work I had done 2 years ago, is replaced CORGI gas registration
in Great Britain on the 1st April 2009. It will be the official industry stamp for gas safety. Upon installation you should have been given a Gas Safety Certificate by the fitter/installer. Q. I am buying an investment property with the help of a mortgage. What should I do? A. You need a special buy to let mortgage to finance this property and before exchange of Contracts you will need a special landlords insurance policy. Please make sure the property is fit to let and that there is a gas safety certificate available. Please also ensure that the electrics have been checked by an authorized electrician. Diaclaimer Please seek your own solicitor’s advice for any legal matter.
Mobile Phone Providers: The New Rip-Off Merchants And another thing. I'm with O2 and foolishly, though on the advice of young people and we know they're never foolish, switched off my wi-fi connection and collected internet data by 3G. I'd been told in the shop that this was only dangerous on charges when I was abroad. But my next statement showed I'd racked up more than £200 in a month, against my usual £30 bill, and I was already up to £150 in the next month. “You would actually get a better ice he provides. Read very carefully, I will write this only once. Okay, my fault. O2 switched my deal from the bank” tariff, providing some bolt-on data charges and reimbursed me Oh, how did we ever manage be- Mobile phone contracts Take a typical £32-a-month con- £100. But two things strike me: fore mobile phones? That's what people of my age tend tract over two years at a total cost First, how many absent-minded to exclaim when they're making of £768. Now choose your “free” middle-aged men does O2 need out that catching a train on time phone. Then go to the page where to be making the same mistake to for a meeting involves feats of the provider sells phones. What be really coining it over a year? communicational planning akin does it cost? £200. So the sup- And shouldn't it be sending out to recruiting a flock of migrating posedly free phone has cost you an automated message telling £568 over two years. But you me that my usage charges were swallows to run a toy shop. I'll tell you how we managed may have been given 300 free unusual when they exceeded the norm by, say, 50%? before mobile phones. For one minutes a month? thing, I didn't actually have to go So, go to the page where it'll And, second, doesn't the refund sell you a SIM card only for the of £100 smack a bit of being rathoutside to make a call. A combination of late-medieval equivalent usage. It'll be about er sheepish about this racket and diligence in building solid homes £15 a month. So buy that and accepting there's been a rip-off and the mobile phone operators' bung it in a £10 mobile you've when you raise it with the comlack of building sufficient relay bought on eBay. Total cost over pany in the first place? masts means that I have to go into two years is £370, so you've just I think the banks have new comsaved £400 on that contract-free petition in greed, poor service the garden to get a signal. My gripe isn't just that the kit still phone. Or buy the £200 phone and misrepresentation of the doesn't work very well (and it re- that you fancied and you've still word “free”. But I could forgive ally doesn't, unless you're stand- saved £200, a neat 100% saving. the mobile sharks anything if ing right next to a mast when all You would actually get a better only I DIDN'T HAVE TO GO other subscribers on your operat- deal from the bank, buying your OUTSIDE TO ANSWER THE ing system have been killed by a phone with a loan. Now there's a FLIPPING PHONE. mystery virus), it's also mobile sentence I thought I'd never write. Reverend George Pitcher That is a scandal. I mean, no one charges. I cannot believe that the human is meant to rip off the public more race has evolved to a level where than the banks. The banks must it can get the jam inside a dough- be outraged. Something must nut while still buying the propo- be done; they have their lack of sition “free” phone from mobile reputation to consider, after all. Perhaps the mobile phone comretailers. So, Earthlings, let me explain panies could be nationalised and how your contract phone is free given to the banks? only in the sense that a mugger doesn't invoice you for the serv- Wi-fi and 3G
Britain Makes it Tough for Pakistani Students Britain has decided to make it tough for Pakistani students to step on the English soil, following a pilot scheme finding as many as four in ten applicants may be bogus. British Home Office figures have revealed that thousands of student visa applicants cannot speak English, despite claiming they want to study here, the Daily Mail reported. Home Secretary Theresa May has now decreed that anyone wanting to come to study in Britain from Pakistan must be interviewed by border agency officials before a visa is granted. An estimated 10,000 Pakistani students apply to come to the country every year. Presently, if paper applications raise suspicions, applicants may be interviewed in their home country. Of these, around 20 percent are rejected. But a recent pilot scheme in which every ap-
plicant was required to have a message to bogus students is face-to-face interview found clear - you will be found out and
that up to 43 percent should be rejected. A senior Whitehall source said that by far the biggest reason for them being turned down was poor English language skills. "Britain is open for business to the best and brightest. But the
you will be stopped from coming," said the source. Last month, a report by the National Audit Office found that a flawed immigration crackdown may have allowed up to 50,000 bogus students into Britain.
Today’s and Tomorrow’s Top Global Cities The ongoing seismic shift in the global balance of economic weight and power from the developed world in the north and the west to the developing world in the south and the east has profound economic and political implications for business and government policy makers everywhere. This shift has been driven primarily by the rapid growth of increasingly robust emerging market economies (EMEs), as strongly evidenced by the spectacular rise of China, as opposed to the tepid growth of recently crisis-prone developed economies. A similar and related transformation, with its own profound economic and political implications, is occurring in terms of global urbanization as the world population shifts from the countryside to towns and cities. For the first time in history, more than half of the world population lives in towns and cities, generating more than 80 percent of global GDP. Urbanization, benefiting from demand side
economies of scale (positive network externalities) as well as supply side economies of scale, enhanced by economies of agglomeration (cluster effects), is one of the most powerful driv-
ers of global productivity increases and economic growth. That is why the 21st century is often referred to as the century of the cities, highlighting their importance as economic growth poles. As the centre of demographic
and economic gravity shifts from the developed world in the north and the west to the developing world in the south and the east, under the earth’s seemingly stable urban landscape, new dynamic cities in the EMEs will replace, as powerful forces of urbanization, many of the old stagnant cities in the developed world. Istanbul, one of the world’s 23 megacities (those with populations over 10 million), ranked 22nd in terms of households with annual incomes over $20,000 at purchasing power parity exchange rates, joining the other 12 developing region cities in the top 25. But it failed to make the MGI’s projected 25 hot spots in terms of GDP, GDP per capita, and GDP growth at predicted real exchange rates. Istanbul’s emergence as an international financial center, which is promoted by the AK Party government as a major long-term economic goal, is intimately tied with its present and future as a global city.
Tariq Ramadan CRC conference – 19th May 2012
St Marks Centre for Radical Christianity is delighted to welcome Tariq Ramadan, Professor of Contemporary Islamic Studies at Oxford University to St Mark’s Church, Broomhill for its Spring Conference. Tariq’s searching analysis of the
challenges involved in creating pluralist societies as well as his equally insightful assessment of areas of common ground informs a radical and progressive vision for how faith traditions could not only bring the best out in one another, but also become a force for good within the world. Tariq is a prophetic voice who speaks intelligently and eloquently, with passion and conviction. His latest books include: The Quest for Meaning, Developing a Philosophy of Pluralism (Penguin, 2010); What I believe (OUP, 2009); Radical Reform, Islamic Ethics and Liberation
(OUP, 2008). Website : www.tariqramadan.com Tariq will deliver 2 lectures during the day. Lecture 1 The Quest for Meaning – Tariq will outline the approach to pluralism presented in his recent book, The Quest for Meaning, Developing a Philosophy of Pluralism (Penguin, 2010) Lecture 2 Jesus and Mohammed – Building on the previous lecture, Tariq will explore the commonalities and divergences between these two founders of world faith traditions. Or go to the St Mark’s CRC website www.stmarkscrc.co.uk
The UK’s Highest Insurance Risk Areas Areas of Birmingham, Bradford, Glasgow, Liverpool, London, Luton, Newcastle and Manchester are considered to be among the highest-risk areas in the UK, according to an official measurement used by car insurers. Conversely, areas in Cheshire, Kent, Devon and Oxford have been revealed as among the lowest car insurance premium risk localities in the UK by postcode. Car insurance premiums are set by a number of different factors: age, driving experience, a car’s power and value, but also where the car is kept – the later of which can send insurance prices soaring. Insurance companies weight premiums according to the location – determined by postcode – of where you live, which can have a substantial effect on the cost of insuring your car, increasing the risk of theft or damage, even if you are a safe driver. In the UK insurance risk by location is rated on an A (lowest risk) to F (highest risk) scale. The most unsafe areas are not even rated, returning a comment of “refer” for an individual assessor to deal with.
Refer areas include B1-21 postcodes in Birmingham, BD1, 3, 4 and 7 in Bradford, E1-9 in London and a massive 22 postcodes in Glasgow (G1-5, 11, 13-15, 2023, 31-34, 40-42, 51 and 53). Areas L1-21 in Liverpool, LU1 and LU4 postal districts in Luton, N1, 7 and 9 areas of London, NE1, 4-6 and 8 localities in Newcastle and M1-9, 11-24, 40 and 60 postcodes of Manchester also return the refer rating. Conversely, the lowest, A-rated insurance risk locations include the AB10-16, 21-25, 30-39, 4145 and 51-56 areas of Aberdeen, B61 and B80 postcodes in Birmingham, BA3, 7, 9-10, 15-16, and 20-22 regions of Bath and BD23-24 postcodes in Bradford. Interestingly, areas classified as within the same city limits can record both refer or F ratings alongside A-rated areas, highlighting how only a small change in details can affect the price of insurance premiums. The Cheshire postcodes CW2, 4, 6, 8, 10 and 11 – as well as gaggles of Exeter postmarks: EX6, 7, 9-19, 21-24, 31-33 and 35-39 – all returned A ratings.
The Big Question: Are Death Taxes Still Fair?
The only two certainties in life are death and taxes, so the saying goes. But death taxes? After a life of slog, earning enough to buy a nice house and being taxed heavily for the pleasure of doing so, is it really fair that people should be forking out on their death beds too? Then again should the aristocracy be able to pass on vast estates to their children who will never have to work without being at least expected to pay a bit for the good of the country and redistribute some of their wealth. There has, after all, been some form of inheritance or estate tax in this country since 1796 for precisely that reason. Inheritance tax brought in around £2.7bn for the Treasury in 2010/11 and was paid by around 12,000 of the UK's 24m households. But rising house prices mean more and more people are being brought into the £325,000 bracket that means inheritance tax at 40 per cent is then due. It is breeding increasing anger and resentment. Is a death tax the fairest way to lift the burden on the young and redistribute wealth? Yes: thresholds means the average middle class family won't have to pay. Not even being able to die without being taxed is at first thought beyond belief. After pursuing us through life, the tax-
man could at least give us peace in death? But when you stand back and look at it in a cold light, very few people actually pay inheritance tax - three per cent of estates in the country. Certainly not the scores of unwitting middle class families we are being led to believe. (There are a hell of a lot of not very rich people in this country paying at the 40 per cent income tax - surely a greater ill.) It was recently calculated that the average middle class family expects to leave £335,000 to offspring, which is above the threshold for a single person but bear in mind that the effective threshold for a married couple leaving their estate to their children is £650,000. So, in short, the average middle class family will not have to pay. And there are a fair few exemptions to get out of paying. So be sensible and give all your money to your children seven years before you die. Then smaller gifts before you die. This means that inheritance tax, death tax, or estate tax is pretty much performing the role that it was designed for: to take money from the aristocracy and the very rich and redistribute it for the good of society. It means that inherited wealth is not perpetuated, that properties don't end up in the hands of too few families
for generations without the rest of the people who are working hard to pay for an education to succeed getting a look in. It means that the next generation have more chances to do well for themselves. Why should children who may never have to work because of the incredible riches they have inherited not forfeit a little something? After all there are a growing number of very rich selfmade men and women out there who are giving their money to charity rather than their offspring because they think their children should learn to make their own way in the world. And if you still are so against the taxman getting any of your hard earned or simply inherited money then take the cruise, buy the cars and spend it all, because you sure as hell cannot take it with you. No: inheritance tax robs the young it does not help them. Let's face it. We all want to leave something behind for our heirs and we're not all talking about a sprawling estate in the home counties and a couple of homes abroad. You work hard, you save and you invest so that you can give your children and their children all the advantages in life that you can an education, somewhere to live and above all security. And then
the taxman comes along and demands his 40%. With the rise in house prices, £650,000 does not make you very rich in the UK any more. In fact in some parts of the country that will just about buy you a nice four bedroom home with a medium sized garden. That is an estate that should not be taxed for goodness sake. No, inheritance tax robs the young it does not help them. The generation that will lose out is the generation that has just lost child benefit and pretty much all other perks because the government considers them rich when they are just about getting by. This generation will also not be able to afford the university fees for their children or even a halfway decent education at all. Then they will find that the money they were relying on to help will be heavily taxed. Aside from that it's double taxation so doubly unfair and it discourages saving - surely a social good at a time of careless lending and reckless spending. Taxes should take into account changes in society and society has indeed changed since 1796 when the concept first took seed. If the tax is not scrapped then the government certainly needs to take a long hard look at those thresholds and have a proper think about what rich really means.
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PROPERTY CORNER by: Mohammed Mahroof BSc (Hons) MRICS Consultant: Mark Jenkinson & Son
LAND & DEVELOPMENT
I have recently been asked by a number of people if buying land and developing is a good idea, and how to go about his. Firstly, I was quite excited by the question and secondly, it encourages me that people follow these articles. Please keep asking me questions.
Land development is a topic I have not covered before but have been professionally involved in for many years. It is a very exciting area to be involved in but here there is a note of caution – development is very much a professional vocation and anybody contemplating such a venture should seek professional advice before embarking on this, what can only be described as, adventure. Land as a commodity is certainly not being reproduced and is a finite product. Demand is always going to be there. What price you pay and how you go about developing is dependent on a number of major considerations which I cannot begin to do justice to in a short article. Just to give you a flavour you must consider the following issues.
thority? This will clearly dictate what you can do with the land. The planning process can be a major consideration in a whole host of scenarios. Finance There will be costs not only in buying the land but also professional fees which you will need to budget for, you will need to finance the development start-up costs, and finance costs. Professional Advisers You will need to liaise with lawyers, architects, planning advisers, surveyors, financiers and many more. It is sensible to put a project team together. The logistics of a project management I will talk about in another article.
value you should pay for the land. There are many other considerations to take into account which your professional advisers will be able to explain. But first things first. You need to identify a piece of land which you should then get a valuation appraisal on, which should give you a value to negotiate with the vendor. Once you have bought your piece of land, whether for commercial, residential or mixed use development the adventure will begin. Once you have done one development you will either not do one again or you will enjoy the adrenalin flow that will make you want to do another one.
Developer You as a developer will need to The key ingredient for a successknow what sort of return you are ful development is to have a good looking for on a development team around you. project. As ever, if you want to contact me please call me on Construction Costs These will influence developer 0114 2760151 / 0787 901 5095 or through ILM. profit.
Surveyor's Advice You will need a development Planning What status does the land have in valuation carried out to give you planning terms with the local au- a summary indication of what
whereas Touareg women are veilfree). Things changed in 1960 when French Sudan was granted independence as the Republic of
The tower was constructed with extremely strong steel tubes surrounding a central concrete column that are structurally separate from each other in the tower’s mid-section. In the event of an earthquake, the concrete core and steel frame are designed to offset each other to reduce the building’s overall motion. The Skytree has been built to stand firm even if a magnitude 7 quake were to strike beneath the building. The tower sustained no structural damage from the magnitude 9.0 quake that struck off Japan’s northeastern coast last March, even as it was being built. The Skytree is expected to bolster television and radio transmissions in the capital region. Owners hope it will also become a new tourist destination in Tokyo.
Tokyo Skytree, world’s secondtallest tower, shows off views a month before it opens to public Visitors have been up the world’s tallest freestanding broadcast structure on Tuesday, a 634-meter (2,080-foot) tower with special technology meant to withstand earthquakes that often strike Japan. The Tokyo Skytree is the world’s second-tallest structure behind the 828-meter (2,717-foot) Burj Khalifa in Dubai. The needle-like radio and television tower opens to the public on May 22. It took about 50 seconds in a high-speed elevator to zip up to the lower observation deck at 350 meters (1,148 feet), and another 30 seconds to reach the higher deck at 450 meters (1,476 feet). The Skytree has a restaurant and two cafes on the observation decks, a vertigo-inducing glass floor that allows visitors to look straight down, and an emergency staircase with 2,523 steps.
Britain Mulls Moving Out Foreign Criminals Foreign criminals, using human rights laws to stay in Britain, are likely to be booted out under new measures being taken by the government, a top official has said. British Home Secretary Theresa May wants judges to ignore pleas that their "right to a family life" means they should
not be deported. May says she will toughen up the rules this summer, meaning more will be booted out of Britain in future. But the home secretary's move is expected to spark a fresh row with Justice Secretary Ken Clarke, who has defended the use of the European Convention
on Human Rights by illegal immigrants. The convention says judges must take account of illegal immigrants' "domestic arrangements". May, however, wants them to use a "qualification" which allows courts to ignore it.
Dock Truants’ Child Benefit, Ministers Urged
Meet Azawad, Africa’s Newest Country A secular Berber, proWestern nation in the middle of the Sahara. On the map of West Africa, Azawad is a large irregular triangle set among Algeria, Niger, Burkina Faso, Mauritania, and Mali — the country it belonged to for fifty-two years. It is approximately 650,000 square kilometers — the size of Texas — and has fewer than 2 million inhabitants. Azawad declared its independence on April 6, after a quick war wherein the Azawad National Liberation Movement (MNLA) forces — equipped with weaponry looted from Libya — routed the Malian government forces. Azawad is certainly entitled to be a free nation. It is an almost homogenous Muslim and Berber-speaking society, an offshoot of the larger Touareg confederacy that controlled most of the Sahara and its commercial trade routes for centuries, if not millenia. In the early 1900s, the French amalgamated it for administrative purposes with Sudan, a black-populated colony on the Niger River, but did not interfere much with its distinctive way of life (Touareg nomads are known to dress in blue and wear a veil,
Mali. Azawad insisted on a separate state. They rebelled against Mali in 1963, only to be crushed mercilessly by Malian forces. They rebelled again in 1990 a bit more successfully, and then again in 2006 and 2010. The new country insists in its declaration of independence that it recognizes all existing borders and countries, including Mali proper, which would be left with an 800,000 square kilometer area and some 13 million inhabitants. It also insists that it adheres to the UN charter and principles. Azawad is currently universally unrecognized and the fear of Islamists gaining a foothold in Africa scares many important political powers. In order to gain independence, Azawad-leaders first need to gain control of the country from local power leaders, warlords, and Islamists. Then it needs to show a harmless figure to other political powers. Only then will other countries recognize it. This is only possible if Mali does not crush it first.
Persistent truancy affects children's life chances. Child benefit should be docked if parents fail to pay fines for persistent truancy by their children, a government adviser says. A behaviour expert says unpaid truancy fines should be recovered directly from child-benefit payments in a crackdown on absenteeism. The current system of penalty notices is ineffective, as non-payment rarely leads to prosecution. Primary schools are urged to pick up on patterns of absenteeism earlier. The issue of school attendance has been in focus in the wake of England's
riots last year. Penalty notices 54m days of school were missed last year even though some schools went to great lengths to tackle attendance issues. The latest figures show 400,000 children were persistently absent from England's schools in the past year and missed about one month of school each. Currently, penalty notices for truancy can be issued to parents who allow their children to miss too much school. They can be issued by head teachers, council officers and the police, and lead to fines of £50 - doubling
to £100 if parents fail to pay within 28 days. At this point the issuer has to prosecute or withdraw the penalty notice. 127,000 penalty notices issued since their introduction in 2004, around half were unpaid or withdrawn. It is recommended the fines increase to £60 in the first instance, doubling to £120 if they are unpaid after 28 days. At this point the money would be automatically recovered from child benefit payments. But county court action would follow for those parents not in receipt of child benefit.
Youth unemployment in Bradford, northern England, is double the UK average. The city is the third most affordable place in Britain to buy a home. Incomes per head in inner London are the highest in the European Union; those in Bradford are lower than the average of the UK and the EU, which includes the still extremely poor nations of the old communist bloc. There has been much speculation about the reasons for George Galloway’s spectacular victory in the Bradford West by-election against all of the main parties. It was a one-off, some posited. It was a protest by the seat’s big Muslim population against the war in Afghanistan. It was unhappiness with Ed Miliband’s leadership and Labour’s
austerity-lite approach to the economy. No doubt all these factors played a part, but something seems to be missing from the list of causes: namely that Bradford West, like many other towns and cities in Britain’s regions, is deep in recession and suffering from a jobs crisis. This is not really about the failed war against the Taliban; it is about the failed war against poverty. Britain is not the only country that has depressed regions. America has the rust belt of the midwest. Germany has the old Lander of the east. Italy has the mezzogiorno of the south. Yet in no other country is the scale of the problem so acute, the commitment in government to do
anything about the problem so weak, the outlook so desperate. In Britain, only two regions — London and the rest of the southeast of England — are richer than the national average. The decline of the once thriving industrial heartlands has had four distinct phases. In the 19th century, the north of England was where the action was in the UK economy. But as the structure of the economy changed in the first half of the 20th century, the new industries tended to be based, not in places such as Bradford and Blackburn, but along the arterial roads of the south-east of England.
UK’s North-South Divide
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Hijabi? Putting Pictures on Facebook? Ever seen a Hijabi posting her most beautiful pictures on Facebook? I have. And it's completely beyond my understanding. Before everyone concludes I'm an extremist of some sort, I'll admit that I'm on Facebook too, and at some point, I have also posted my pictures up. But that's when I discovered that several months of Facebook usage still does not empower most of us with the ability to conquer the privacy settings on our profiles, if they were ever of any use to start with. Sure, we all want to show our friends how drop dead gorgeous we were looking at some party we went to. We also want to prove to our non-Hijabi friends how we resemble those supermodels on TV when we dress up for the "Halal prom". We also want to amaze our nonMuslim female friends with the awesome hairstyles and colors under our Hijab. In all honesty, we just want to have some fun and share our exciting Kodak moments with our friends, right? I once spoke to a fellow Hijabi about posting pictures of herself without Hijab on Facebook, MSN, and other online social networking services. She said, "I know that there will always be the possibility of non-mahrams seeing my pictures while my friends are looking at them, but it's their responsibility to take care of my Hijab, I trust them. I
Free Cycle Training for School Children
Children are being urged to take up free cycle training with their schools as part of a drive to boost bike safety. As Sheffield families dust off their bikes for the Spring, Sheffield school pupils aged from nine to 13 can claim free ‘Bikeability’ cycle training as they return from their Easter holidays. The Government approved training has replaced the outdated cycling proficiency test designed over 50 years ago, and shows children how to check their bikes, how to control their bikes safely, and how to ride confidently on quiet local roads. Sheffield City Council has won a grant £88,000 from the Department for Transport to provide the training, which is available for 2,200 school children in Y5, 6, 7 and 8 year groups. “The 'Bikeability' programme is excellent and teaches the children essential life skills. All children should do it!”
guess I'm just one of those girls who don't like thinking outside the box." Pure intentions aside, since when has there been the Islamic exception of trusting others with our Hijab? And what does thinking outside the box have to do with anything? If others were trustworthy enough to take care of our Hijab, then I'd never have come across those online photos of posing Hijabis featuring the religious leader's wife without Hijab in the background. Fortunately, 50 percent of Hijabis are wise enough to avoid posting non-Hijabi pictures on such public websites. But the number of Hijabis who make their profile pictures (which can usually be accessed by the entire Facebook network) a picture of themselves is simply overwhelming. Of course, it is technically "permissible" for non-mahrams to see us while we are in Hijab, but the majority of Hijabis are so dolled up in their display pictures that it seems as though someone forced a headscarf on the winner of America's Next Top Model. Of course, sisters are not alone when it comes to the competition of who looks the hottest in their Facebook display
picture. The brothers have been quick to catch on. Posing with their Versace sunglasses and slick t-shirts (if they are wearing one at all), down to the core of the matter, it has become a game of impressing anyone and everyone, as long as you're on Facebook. But the photo album disease is also spreading far and wide with the adults too! The number of parents who are posting pictures of their children is ab-
solutely terrifying. It's understandable that parents want to show off their beautiful children to their friends; however, it goes without saying that many of these parents are not exactly quite tech-savvy and not too proficient when it comes to privacy settings, thereby often leaving their children's pictures publicly accessible by any and all weirdos. Furthermore, according to a report by the BBC, a team of researchers from Cambridge University analyzed sixteen social networking websites and discovered that some sites, including Facebook, stored photos of users and allowed them to be viewed by others, even after the user deleted them. They did this by uploading pictures and noting down the image URLs. "When checked 30 days later, these links continued to work for seven of the sites, even though a typical user might think the photos had been removed," the researchers found. Despite all the privacy settings and limitations we may try and implement to our Facebook and other online profiles, more likely than not there will always be a loophole in the system, a fact that many of us are quite oblivious to. Another classic example of privacy settings gone wrong is adding an application or taking certain quizzes on Face-
book, which give the creator access to our entire profile, including all our private photos and the "public link" on our albums, which gives anyone who has this link complete access to all our "hidden" pictures. While there are multiple benefits of having pictures on Facebook, including "so my friends know it's me who is adding them" and "my relatives overseas want to see what I look like", it's quite a risky business. Accessible from Google, the entire process of having our pictures downloaded and saved on someone's computer takes only a few seconds. It is very possible that a Hijabi sister's cute profile picture of her having a good time with friends might very well end up in the hands of an overzealous matchmaker in the community and ogled over by dozens of boys around the globe, and vice versa. The essence of Hijab is simple: to conceal as much as possible and only display our beauty when absolutely necessary. If Facebook profile pictures were an absolutely necessary place for Muslims girls, boys, and adults to post their most stunning and attractive pictures for the whole world to see, then I guess I've been slow to jump on the bandwagon.
Rotherham Candidate on the Campaign Trail The Campaign was launched for the local elections "Rotherham Sitwell Ward "by the Labour Party candidate Mr Chaudhry Tajamal Khan Sahib (Palak AJK). A popular and well respected Rotherham community activist who shows an immense interest in all types of community work including promoting and raising the awareness of integration, cultural diversity, interfaith unity and community cohesion. Particularly issues of empowering the young people and education are some of his
strengths. Mr Tajamal has been credited for successfully engaging and addressing meetings with local young people on promoting unity during last summers national civil unrest. Mr Tajamal has a good reputation for the wealth of political knowledge around the international scene overseas. His strong relations with the administration of the current Azad Kashmir Government, has been very instrumental with hosting the recent visit of the AJK Prime Minister Mr Ch Abdul Majeed sahib to
Rotherham. The campaign by Rotherhams Labour Party has been launched and the picture shows a very diverse group from the Rotherham community showing their support for Mr Tajamal who is the candidate for the boroughs Sitwell ward Picture-Mr Nasar Mir - Raja Anis Mahmood- Raja Haq Nawaz- Ch Sageer Hussain and many others. Ch Tajamal Khan: Labour candidate for Sitwell ward Rotherham - 07971362915
Britain Wastes Millions on Deporting Migrants Britain's border control agency has wasted millions of pounds on chartering half-empty flights to deport illegal migrants, including Pakistanis and Sri Lankans, a media report said. Figures obtained by the Telegraph said the UK Border Agency (UKBA) spent 8.67 million pounds (around $14 million) on 37 flights to Afghanistan, Nigeria, Sri Lanka, Iraq, Ghana, Pakistan and the Democratic Republic of Congo in 2011. More than half the seats were left empty after some migrants were given last-minute reprieves.
There were 17 chartered flights to Afghanistan, nine to Nigeria, four to Sri Lanka, three to Pakistan, two to Ghana, and one each to Iraq and the Democratic Republic of Congo. Seven trips were made in three months from November 2011 to February 2012, and a total of 821 seats were booked for illegal immigrants to be deported. But just 385 were actually sent. A flight heading to Pakistan Feb 6 should have had 194 people on it but 144 were removed.
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GROWING INTOLERANCE cont from April edition
The murder of three French soldiers and the killing of four people at a Jewish school in Toulouse France have once again raised the ominous threat of home grown terrorism in the West. Mohamed Merah, 23, had reportedly claimed he was acting to “avenge Palestinian children” and to protest against French military intervention in Afghanistan.France, Spain, UK and US have all had their share of Al-Qaeda linked attacks. While Osama bin Laden is dead and the organisation significantly weakened, as claimed, homegrown threats have not diminished. In fact, as the turmoil spreads in the Islamic world, the internal stability of many western countries is at risk, and experiment with multiculturalism is increasingly uncertain.There are two contradictory trends at play. On one hand, Muslim population in the West is growing, however, the policies of these countries are increasingly being perceived as hostile towards the Islamic world. This, including worsening economics, is resulting in growing intolerance towards ethnic populations, and the rise of anti-immigration policies and right-wing political parties and candidates. In October 2010, courting anti-immigration fervour, Angela Merkel had stated that the German attempt to create a multicultural society has
‘utterly failed’. She added that it was the responsibility of immigrants to do more towards better integration. The realisation of what happens ‘over there’ impacts ‘here’ have still not fully sunk in. On the other hand, nationalist and Islamist sentiments are resurging in the regions impacted by the war against terror. According to Pew Forum on Religious and Public Life, US Muslim population is expected to rise from 2.6 million in 2010 to 6.2 million by 2030, constituting about 1.7% of the total population.The study puts the number of foreign born Americans at 64.5%. In many northern and eastern European nations, Muslims would make up close to 10% of the total population by 2030, with profound electoral implications. A 1998 Newsweek article projected Islam to be the fastestgrowing religion in the US and the American Muslim population is expected to surpass the Jewish.Furthermore, a survey conducted by Zogby International in August 2000 and commissioned by the American Muslim Council identified the regional origin of American Muslim as follows: 26.2% Middle Eastern (Arab), 24.7% South Asian, 23.8% AfricanAmerican, 10.3% Middle Eastern (not Arab), 6.4% East Asian, and 11.6% Other. Moreover, the survey showed that 32.2 %
of American Muslims live on the East Coast, 25.3% in the South, 24.3% in the Central/ Great Lakes Region, and 18.2% in the West.Irrespective of these numbers, the foreign policy of the US, with the exception of East Asia, is not considered favourably disposed towards these Islamic regions of the world. Especially, if we compare the influence of American Indian and Jewish population on the foreign policy of US against that of American Muslims. However, it could be argued that the reason for this is not simply religion. The rulers of the countries that constitute these Muslim dominated areas are hardly democratic. Nonetheless, the winds of change are blowing through out these regions in the form of Arab Awakening, with growing chances of moderate Muslims and nationalist coming in to power. Part of the problem that prevents numbers to convert in to influence, may have to do with how well Muslims are integrated in the societies of Europe and Northern America. It is commonly referred that American Muslims are better assimilated into their adopted country than their counterparts in Europe. For example, a study funded by billionaire philanthropist George Soros found that only 78% of Muslims in the UK identify themselves as British,
in France 49% claim themselves as French, while in Germany only 23% consider themselves Germans. There are about 4 million Muslims in Germany, while France has about 5 Million.In 2007, a Newsweek poll that intended to assess American attitudes towards Muslims and Islam reported these findings: 40% of Americans believed that American Muslims are as loyal to the US as they are to Islam, 63% believed most American Muslims do not condone violence, and 41% felt that Islam glorifies suicide. Unfortunately, these numbers will almost certainly change for the worse as more links between the Muslims in the West and extremists are discovered. This leads to the most intriguing question of what does better integration of Muslim means in European and American context. A challenge in this regards is that while earlier European immigrants were cut off from the countries of their origin, the communication revolution and globalisation has made it easier for the more recent immigrants to maintain a constant sense of connection to their native lands and thus maintain multiple loyalties. At an event organised by the Pakistani American Congress (PAC) at the Capitol Hill last
June, the Representatives of the US Congress constantly reminded the Pakistan American community where its loyalty should be as US-Pakistan relations deteriorate. The community, for example, is divided, as in Pakistan, on the issue of drone strikes.Perhaps the best approach to deal with the challenge of multiculturalism in the West is provided by a resounding quote from the sermon of Martin Luther King delivered in 1967, “If we are to have a peace on earth, our loyalties must become ecumenical rather than sectional. Our loyalties must transcend our race, our tribe, our class, and our nation; and this means we must develop a world perspective.” The writer is the chief analyst for PoliTact (www.PoliTact. com and http:twitter.com/politact) and can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org
U.S. 'dirty oil' imports set to triple As the United States gets more oil imported from Canada's oil sands, critics worry that the pipelines that carry it will leak. As the United States gets more oil imported from Canada's oil sands, critics worry that the pipelines that carry it will leak. U.S. imports of what environmentalists are calling "dirty oil" are set to triple over the next decade, raising concerns over the environmental impact of extracting it and whether pipelines can safely transport this Canadian oil. The United States currently imports over half a million barrels a day of bitumen from Canada's oil sands region, according to the Sierra Club. That number, Sierra Club says is set to grow to over 1.5 million barrels by 2020. That represents nearly 10% of the country's current consumption. The U.S. Energy Information Administration's overall Canadian oil production numbers are in-line with the Sierra Club's projected pace. Bitumen is a heavy, tar-like oil. It needs to be heavily processed in order to be turned into more viscous, easier to refine, crude oil. Because it's so thick, to make it more viscous and move it by pipeline, it gets diluted with natural gas liquids. Besides the sheer amount of energy and water needed to process and extract bitumen, environmentalists say it's more dangerous to move because it's more corrosive to pipelines than regular crude. While the industry maintains bitumen is safe, the danger of transporting it is one of the reasons there is so much opposition to the Keystone pipeline expansion, which is supposed to carry it, among other oil products. "We've got all this unconventional crude, and we're completely unprepared for it," said Michael Marx, a senior campaign director at the Sierra Club. "It's definitely more dangerous" than regular oil.
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JUSTICE DELAYED IS INJUSTICE B y : Dr Abdul Qadeer Khan
According to national and international reports, corruption is highest in the police and the lower levels of the judiciary. Thanks to the laxity of the lower courts, ordinary cases drag on for years, often until the complainants have passed away. There is no justice for the poor. Many crimes are recorded but still these cases drag on. Considering all this, one is reminded of the quick justice that used to be provided to the needy by a few qazis at a cost of no more than their meager salaries and a room, with a carpet to sit on. A qazi, or munif, is a person ruling in accordance with the Sharia. He is appointed by the ruler. Since Islam does not differentiate between the religious and the secular, qazis traditionally had jurisdiction over all legal matters. His judgements were based on the Quran and Sunnah. This system was started during the lifetime of our Holy Prophet (PBUH) and continued in all Islamic countries until a few decades ago. In those days, Muftis and Fuqaha elucidated the principles of jurisprudence and laws and the qazi ensured that justice was done accordingly. In order to assist the qazi in enforcing his judgements, some Muslim rulers provided a
small force (Shurtas), who had wide powers and nobody could disobey them. The Abbasid Caliphs introduced the office of Qazi-al-Qazzat (chief qazi). He was not only advisor to the ruler but also kept an eye on the performance of the qazis. Besides judicial functions, the Qazi also administered religious endowments (awqaf), the execution of wills, the accreditation of witnesses, guardianship over orphans and supervision of enforcement of public morals. The formal institution of qazi was established in 705 AD during the reign of the Umayyad Caliphs. By 750 AD religious laws were firmly defined for the qazi to follow. Essentially he was to be a Muslim, sane, not convicted of slander and educated in Islamic sciences. There was no exploitable system like nowadays and the qazi’s word was final. An institution known as “Muzalim” functioned like an appeal court to help parties settle their disputes. The shurtas enforced the decision of the qazi and were sometimes allowed to hear and decide criminal cases. The law-and-order situation during the reigns of Hazrat Umar (RA), Umar bin Abdul Aziz (RA), Caliph Harun-al-Rashid, Sultan Mahmood of Ghazni and
Sultan Alauddin Khilji are golden chapters in Islamic history. Hazrat Umar (RA) was the first to establish the office of qazi on a solid foundation. He defined qazis’ education, training and suitability in detail. His letter to the governor of Kufa, Abu Musa Ahsari, is detailed but brief and describes the functions of a qazi in providing justice to plaintiffs. During Hazrat Umar’s reign, Muslims ruled an area of about 500,000 square miles. The qazi system was such that there was never a whisper of the non-availability, or miscarriage, of justice and it was freely and instantly dispensed. (Please read Hazrat Umar’s judicial system in detail in “Al-Farooq” by Maulana Shibli Naumani.) There was hardly any burden on the state treasury. Most important of all, there were no cases left pending. A qazi-like system functions in China today. Justice is immediate and culprits are dealt with effectively and instantly. Saudi Arabia also has a highly efficient qazi system – no delays, no non-availability of justice and no favouritism! Our present judicial system was introduced in 1861 with an Act to establish High Courts in Calcutta, Bombay and Madras, and, in 1866, in Lahore and Allahabad.
Sheffield has become the first city in Yorkshire to scoop a coveted award for giving people a great night out. The city is one of a handful nationally which have been awarded Purple Flag status after being acknowledged as exemplary in providing a welcoming city centre for evening visitors. Inspectors found the city to be both appealing and diverse in terms of entertainment on offer, while at the same time giving high scores for the services it provides. Sheffield achieved a number of exemplary scores which highlighted the effectiveness of the partnership between Sheffield City Council, South Yorkshire Police and the local businesses in the evening and night time economy.
This is official recognition of the hard work that has been ongoing for the last few years by both public and private sector to make Sheffield one of the safest, welcoming and diverse nights out in the region. Creating a wel-
tremendously hard to achieve this. Sheffield delivers a range of activities, initiatives and services in their centres as part of a committed partnership Purple Flag is a town and city centre award - similar to the Blue Flag for beaches - backed by Government, police and business. To achieve Purple Flag status, towns and cities must be welcoming to everyone; offer safe ways for visitors to travel home; provide a good mix of venues and be appealing after dark. Purple Flag towns and cities benefit from more visitors, lower crime and anti-social behaviour and improved perceptions of centres. Sheffield will have its new Purple Flag status formally recognised at an awards ceremony in Bristol on July 3.
Sheffield Scoops Coveted Night Out Award
coming, inclusive and appealing night time economy is a major partnership endeavour, and Sheffield has been awarded the Purple Flag accreditation after working
There followed the appointment of session judges, magistrates, deputy commissioners, etc. The tail became a thousand times longer than the body itself, resulting in the present judicial mess. Judging by the functioning of this system, it is apparent that it is a total failure. The influential, the rich and those in authority manage to be cleared of all crimes or, after having served five or ten years in jail for corruption and bad governance, manage to get the highest posts. They openly ridicule and insult the superior judiciary and are not taken to task for doing so. Those who embezzled millions are well able to pay lawyers of disrepute who drag cases on for years or see to it that their clients cleared of all charges. Taxpayers are paying billions to maintain the system and yet there is no law and order in the country, nor is fair and quick justice available to the common man. We have the examples of the Steel Mills, PIA, the Railways, NICL, the murder of two young boys in Sialkot, the murder of innocent foreigners in Kharotabad, kidnapping, torture and murder of innocent citizens by rogue intelligence agencies, the unlawful increases in gas, petroleum and electricity prices,
the cancer of adulteration of edibles and medicines (especially life-saving drugs) and the open mockery and ridiculing of the superior courts before us. None of these issues have been dealt with in a stern manner. We, the older generation, witnessed British rule and how a Commissioner or a Deputy Commissioner kept law and order and provided quick justice. No cases were left pending and nobody dared ridicule the judiciary or disobey the law enforcing agencies. Worst of all, punishment for Contempt of Court is just six months in jail. No wonder this is no deterrent – the looting can continue again afterwards. Contrast that to the punishment for other simple crimes. • Bouncing of a cheque – three years with fine (Pakistan Penal Code 489-F). • Disobedience to/obstruction of duty of a police officer – three years plus fine (152). • Damaging a child’s milk tooth – one year (337-U). • Uprooting the hair of any part of the human body – three years (5). • Theft of a motorcycle or scooter – seven years plus fine (381-A). • Cheating – one year plus fine (415). • Hurting, killing or maiming an
animal of the value of ten rupees – two years plus fine (428). • Damaging or removing land markers – one year (434). • Commitment for trial or confinement by person having authority who knows that he/she is acting contrary to law – seven years plus fine (220) Contrary to these crimes, contempt of court should be punishable by lengthy jail terms and disqualification from all public/ private offices for life (and not six months in a bungalow with VVIP facilities). If the present system is maintained, and that too with laxity and delays, people will lose faith in the judiciary and we would be right in thinking that the old qazi system was a thousand times better than the current one, which is costing us billions of rupees every year. Email: email@example.com
Green Party Full Slate for Council Elections Sheffield Green Party will again stand candidates in all 28 wards in the council elections on May 3rd having contested every ward election in the city since 2004. Key targets are Central where Rob Murphy seeks re-election and Broomhill where former Central councillor Bernard Little is in a 3 way fight with Labour and the Lib Dems - Paul Scriven defends the seat. Cllr Rob Murphy has represented Central ward since 2008. Rob commented : "I believe I am well known for being in touch with the needs of local residents’ and acting on their concerns and problems. I offer voters a clear alternative to Labour and the Lib Dems, who have left our city centre full of empty shops, been slow to protect residents from ris-
ing fuel bills and unfairly profited from Permit The picture shows Green Group leader Cllr Parking Zones. Greens will continue to fight Jillian Creasy (centre) with candidates Cllr against the cuts - we want fair taxes and in- Rob Murphy (left) and Bernard Little (right). vestment in job creation. " Bernard Little commented : "I'm pleased to be the Green candidate again in Broomhill ward to challenge Paul Scriven and the record of the coalition. Residents are concerned about the impact of cuts and privatisation on vital services like the Hallamshire hospital. Students and young people remain angry about Nick Clegg’s broken promises on tuition fees and their bleak job prospects. Greens have already addressed a number of significant issues in the area and I intend to work hard for Broomhill residents in the future."
New Golden Number for Rotherham 2010 Housing - 01709 336040 Rotherham 2010 Housing has a new “golden number”, which is designed to help to improve the customer service for council housing tenants in the borough. The Housing Contact Centre, previously based at Eastwood, has relocated to Riverside House and now handles a broader range of customer enquiries in relation to Housing and the Key Choices Property Shop. As part of the relocation, a new Golden Number has been launched which will make it easier for customers to contact
2010 Housing. The new Golden number is 01709 336040. Calls made to the previous 0300 100 2010 number and the Key Choices Property Shop will automatically transfer to the new number. Repair requests will continue to be dealt with by Connect on 01709 336009. The Contact Centre operates between 8.30am – 5.30pm, Monday to Friday.
£8m extra to meet Bradford's school demand Bradford will be handed an extra £8 million to ease the squeeze on school places as the population across the district continues to soar. The money has been made available through “efficiency savings” and ministers say it will help meet pressures caused by increasing birth rates. The £600 million grant for this
financial year was first announced by Chancellor George Osborne in his Autumn Statement in November. But the allocations were revealed for the first time in a letter from Education Secretary Michael Gove to the Education Select Committee. Bradford's allocation of £8.093 million is the 24th largest in the country. It is in addition to a £7.4
million handout announced in November. Bradford Councillor with responsibility for education Ralph Berry said while the money was welcome Government needed to give councils two or three-yearly allocations to ensure they got the best deal for its money. He said: “We need every pound we can get to deal with our
rising registers and I obviously welcome any money. But we cannot keep having short term funding decisions. We are already well into April and some of these places will be needed by September which means it will cost more as the work needs to be done quickly.” Mr Gove said the cash was being directed to local educa-
Stephen Twigg MP, Labour's Shadow Education Secretary, said: “Michael Gove is fooling nobody into thinking that he is taking the shortage in primary school places seriously.”
You've been told for years that popping a multivitamin every day might help you live longer. But the daily multi habit has been getting a bit of bad press lately. A watchdog of the supplement industry, found that more than half of the 21 multis it tested had too much (or too little) of certain vitamins - or had been contaminated with dangerous substances such as lead. Then a controversial paper from researchers in Denmark and other European countries, published in the Journal of the American Medical Association, made the claim that taking vitamins may actually shorten your life. What's the real story? Are multivitamins safe? Vitamins have been recommended for years because they help you get key nutrients if your diet's low on fruits and veggies -- and may even help prevent cancer and heart disease. And it's unlikely that one criticism will change that. Longtime vitamin experts continue to say multis aren't dangerous and the paper's findings are wrong. The paper analyzed previous studies, including many with people who were sick before taking vitamins, so there's a good chance vitamins weren't responsible for shortening their lives. Experts say the paper also ignored two major studies that found vitamins reduced the risk of death. At the same time, another study shows that you can't assume just any vitamin is safe. Because there are no uniform manufacturing rules for supplements, a multi may not contain what the bottle claims, could be contami-
tion authorities that showed a forecast shortage in places as of next year. According to Government forecast, an extra 5,462 primary places need to be found by 201516 across the district. Currently, 54 out of 155 primary schools across the district are over their limit, compared to just one in five across the country.
nated with something from the manufacturing plant, or might have tainted ingredients. Your best bet: Avoid the vitamins singled and stick with mainstream names such as Centrum Silver and One-A-Day
Women's, which were found to be free of impurities and accurately labelled. Also, check vitamin bottles for the seals. Not every brand has the seals - some don't want to submit to testing but those that do are reliable. How much should I spend to get the biggest benefits? Price isn't a sign of quality. In fact, some of the priciest vita-
mins failed consumer lab tests. A mainstream brand is fine How do I find the right multi for me? In your childbearing years, make sure your multi has 400 micrograms (mcg) of folic acid, which helps make and maintain new cells. And pregnant women should take a vitamin with 600 mcg of folic acid daily; this nutrient also reduces the incidence of neural tube birth defects such as spina bifida. A premenopausal woman should look for a multivitamin with iron to replace the iron lost during menstruation. Menopausal women should go without the iron. Too much iron may raise the risk of heart disease. If you're taking a prescription, check with your doctor about risky interactions. (Vitamin E, for instance, may be a problem if you're taking a blood thinner.) If you're a cancer patient, you should ask your doctor about risks before taking vitamins. Cancer cells need vitamins to grow too. Plus, some vitamins can interfere with chemotherapy. What's the best way to avoid that queasy feeling after taking a multi? Consider switching brands. Trial and error is the best way to determine which brands won't break down poorly in your stomach and lead to irritation. Also, take your multi with food because your body needs some fat (or lipids) to absorb some of the individual vitamins. The delivery method (pill, liquid, gummy bear) makes no difference. But vitamins in liquid form may degrade more quickly on the shelf.
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England is NOT an Independent Country Englan is not an independent country but the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland is a Country There are eight accepted criteria used to determine whether an entity is an independent country or not. A country need only fail on one of the eight criteria to not meet the definition of independent country status. England does not meet all eight criteria; it fails on six of the eight criteria... 1. Has space or territory that has internationally recognized boundaries (boundary disputes are OK). Yes, England does have internationally recognized boundaries and is 130,395 square kilometers in area. England is the largest component of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland. 2. Has people who live there on an ongoing basis. Yes, according to the 2001 census, England's population is 49,138,831. 3. Has economic activity and an organized economy. A country regulates foreign and domestic trade and issues money. Somewhat. England certainly has economic activity and an organized economy. However, England does not regulate its own foreign or domestic trade, the United Kingdom's parliament acts on the entire nation's behalf. The Bank of England serves as the central bank for the United Kingdom and does print banknotes for both England and Wales.
4. Has the power of social engineering, such as education. No. National government departments (such as the Department for Education and Skill) at the national level maintain responsibility for social engineering.
5. Has a transportation system for moving goods and people. Mostly. England has a transportation system but the system is not fully under English control. There is no English Parliament but some systems are under local control but must of the national transportation system is under national control by Parliament. 6. Has a government that provides public services and police power. Somewhat. Local governments provides local law enforcement and fire protection but the national government controls criminal and civil law, the prosecution system, the courts, defense and national security across
the United Kingdom. England does not and can not have its own army. 7. Has sovereignty. No other State should have power over the country's territory. No. The Parliament of the United Kingdom
definitely has power over England's territory. 8. Has external recognition. A country has been "voted into the club" by other countries. No. England does not have external recognition nor does England have its own embassies in other independent countries. There's no possible way England could become an independent member of the United Nations. Thus, as you can plainly see, England (nor Wales, nor Northern Ireland, nor Scotland) is not an independent country; England is an internal division of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland.
What’s Causing you to Snore?
Don't rely on Old Wives cures to stop
Stick a ball in your pyjamas, gargle with garlic and suck a dummy – nope, not some old fashioned game but Old Wives’ cures for snoring. Who hasn’t suffered the noisy honks of a bedtime companion, or realised the snoring from one’s own nose has led to a sore throat in the morning? Given the preponderance of people affected by snoring – an estimated 30 million in the UK - it’s unsurprising a host of unorthodox “cures” have been concocted. But the question is: do any of them actually work? In a bid to find out once and for all, the British Snoring & Sleep Apnoea Association (BSSAA) put the top ten to the test with 2,000 volunteers. Among them: sewing a tennis ball into the back of pyjamas, drinking milk, eating horseradish, phonetic exercises, gargling with garlic, sucking a dummy, rubbing toothpaste under the nostrils and sleeping without pillows. The results? None of them did the trick. As expected not one of the volunteers had stopped snoring. On the contrary, the so-called remedies often ended up causing more trouble – from sore necks and dry mouths to “nearly choking on the dummy” and even the problematic removal of toothpaste from moustaches. So what on earth can be done to stop the habit? The answer, according to the BSSAA, is to pinpoint the cause and then adopt one of a number of scientifically proven treatments. The charity is promoting an online ‘test’ to help sufferers determine what’s making them
snore. A series of simple multiple choice questions guides the user through to the most likely cause and advises of the best cause of action. Reasons for snoring include: • Being obese – particularly if you have a large amount of fat around the neck (more than 17in) • Drinking alcohol, which relaxes muscles and increases narrowing of airways • Taking some types of antidepressants and sedatives, which can have the same effect as alcohol • Smoking, which can inflame and therefore narrow the airways • Allergic rhinitis, which causes the inside of the nose to become swollen due to allergy to substances such as dust or pollen Other causes include issues with the mouth, nose or throat, such as simply being a ‘mouth breather’, to having polyps in the nostrils. Treatments range from losing weight and exercising more to cutting out alcohol and cigarettes, nasal dilators, or something called a Mandibular Advancement Device, which holds the lower jaw and tongue
forward, making more space to breathe and prevent snoring. The fact is that while snoring is often seen as cause for amusement, to those who suffer it can be far from funny. The average snore is around 50 decibels but can reach up to 100 – while the World Health Organisation cites the threshold for noise disturbance at 42 decibels. It is estimated that at least half the nation is disturbed by snoring. It most definitely is a serious matter in a relationship and can, and has been, the cause of relationship breakdown and divorce. Some types of snoring can indicate more severe problems such as sleep apnoea, where the breathing is affected during sleep. A key symptom would be excessive sleepiness during the day, in which case you should visit your GP. And persistent snoring can also damage the throat and even has associations with serious conditions such as stroke. Which is why establishing the root cause is vital. To take the interactive snoring test go to BSSAA snore tests or for more information, see British Snoring & Sleep Apnoea Association
Turmeric Extract May Protect Heart After Surgery A new study from Thailand suggests that extracts from turmeric spice, known for their antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties, may help ward off heart attacks in people who've had recent bypass surgery. During bypass surgery the heart muscle can be damaged from
prolonged lack of blood flow, increasing patients' risk of heart attack. The new findings suggest that curcumins -- the yellow pigment in turmeric -- may be able to ease those risks when added to traditional drug treatment. Research has suggested inflammation
plays an important role in the development of a range of diseases, including heart disease -- and curcumins could have an effect on those pathways. It is likely the antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties of curcumins may help limit heart damage in bypass patients.
Britons Admit Stealing at Self-Service Checkouts Around one third of shoppers in Britain have admitted they steal from supermarkets at the unmanned self-service checkout points, according to a study. The survey of 5,000 customers on money-saving website watchmywallet.co.uk, showed 30 percent have stolen from selfservice points, the Telegraph reported. Customers said they employ
many tricks to dupe the automatic machines. While weighing their purchases, customers select "small" when asked to enter the size of items. Some place items in plastic bags without scanning them properly, while others simply walk off with their items without paying, the study said. Only 13 percent said they did not steal because they were afraid of
getting caught. Another 58 percent said they had not cheated the automated system, saying they considered it stealing and would never do it. "Checkouts are calibrated to detect when an unpaid for item makes it into the bagging area. But staff regularly override the checkout in order to keep the queues flowing," said a spokesman for watchmywallet. co.uk.
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KASH in Race for Police Commisioner Former Councillor Kashif Walayat has been shortlisted for the highest ranked post in Police department as a Police Commitioner for South Yorkshire. He served Sheffield City as a councillor previously. He has recently quit his Grade 7 job as a civil servant to concentrate on his campaign to become one of the region’s first elected asian police commissioner. In a recent interview to ILM News he said that “I have been successfully short listed as a Labour candidate for South Yorkshire Police Crime Commissioner. I would like the opportunity to listen to your views and answer any questions. Personal I am married with 4 children, born and educated in Sheffield. Having worked extensively across Sheffield, Rotherham, Barnsley and Doncaster I am in touch with communities; Labour Values I have been an active member of the Labour Party since the age
of 14, trade unionist, former Labour Councillor, area panel chair, school governor, ward officer and charity chair. A trained carer, I understand the needs of vulnerable people and the elderly; South Yorkshire Police Authority I was appointed for my professional skills and expertise as an independent member in 2007; having previously served as a Labour member in 1997 I continue to provide that important accountability element in policing; Experience I have over 25 years at senior management level within both public and private sector areas relating to Policing, Education, Housing, Health and Central & Local Government. This experience means I am well qualified to address the tremendous challenges facing the police resulting from the current economic downturn whilst delivering an efficient and effective strategy to reduce crime; My Commitment and Determi-
nation as a candidate, I have recently resigned after 25 years service as a senior civil servant with the Department for Education and chair of a housing company so that I can concentrate solely on
this campaign. I strongly believe I am the best Police and Crime Commissioner candidate for Labour in this area because of the following: •I have the full range of competencies and senior management hands on experience at a strate-
gic level for improving service delivery. This includes direct responsibility for the management of multi-million pound budgets, corporate governance and staff resources. •Through my extensive experience on community projects, my political activity in the Labour Party and my career, I am able to demonstrate that I have the required strategic, operational, and community experience for this role. I believe I have the necessary breadth and depth of political acumen, sector knowledge and leadership skills to improve organisational performance, connect with the public and ensure a reduction in crime and best quality outcomes for people. •I care greatly for South Yorkshire and want to ensure all the residents of this area get the greatest benefit possible from the police and criminal justice services. I will fight tirelessly to ensure South Yorkshire gets the best deal. My vision:
Citizens of South Yorkshire should be able to feel safe and secure whilst going about their day to day business without fear of crime; My priorities would be to: •Reduce and prevent crime and the perception around the fear of crime. •Improve the Police service performance and maximise effectiveness of existing resources and technologies. •Strengthen visible neighbourhood policing and address antisocial behaviour. •Engage with the public, Labour party members and connect with all communities and victims of crime. I would like the opportunity to listen to your views around policing and value your support in securing the official Labour Party candidacy during the mid May postal ballots. In the meantime, I'll be campaigning with you to deliver the Labour victory during the local elections on May 3rd.”
Kash has a growing support from the local councillors including Cllr Ibrar Hussain who has also worked with him on the Police Authority as well as local MP’s.
You can get in touch with his on the details provided below. Kashaf Walayat mobile: 07766221006 email: Kashaf4PoliceCommissioner@Walayat.co.uk
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The Mysterious History of Koh-i-Noor No stone has as rich and fascinating a history as the Koh-inoor. The ancestry of this great diamond began in 1304 when it was held by the Rajah of Malwa, although according to some myths the Koh-i-noor was originally found more than 5000 years ago. Devout Hindus claim that it was once worn by the great god Krishna, but was stolen from him as he lay sleeping. By contrast, another source has it that the diamond was discovered in a river bed in 3200 BC. The first reliable evidence of it, however, is in the writings of Babur, the founder of the Mogul Empire, who names this diamond as part of the treasure won by Ala-ud-deen (Aladdin) at the conquest of Malwah in 1304 AD. This was a time when possession of such a gem symbolised the power of an empire. In fact, it has been said that he who owns the Koh-i-noor rules the world, a suitable statement for this, the most famous of all diamonds and a veritable household name in
many parts of the world. The Moguls acquired the diamond in 1526. At that time it was said to weigh 793 carats, but through some incredibly hamfisted cutting and polishing by a jeweller named Borgio it was reduced to 186 carats. The Kohi-noor remained with the Mogul emperors until 1739, when Nadir Shah of Persia, the conqueror of India, got hold of it after laying siege to Dehli and stealing it from the Emperor's turban during a well-known Oriental custom whereby the two leaders would exchange turbans. Later that night, when Nadir Shah unfolded his host's turban he duly found the gem, and cried out 'Koh-inoor', which means 'mountain of light'. Nadir Shah then brought the jewel back with him to Persia. After the death of Nadir Shah the Koh-i-noor came through devious means into the possession of Ahmed Shah, who later became King of Afghanistan. Through various subsequent turmoils the diamond came back into the pos-
session of the Indian princes, un- thing they found in the treasury as story of how the Sikhs handed the til the annexation of the Punjab compensation for having to fight diamond to him in a plain old batsecured it for the British. against the Sikh army, who didn't tered tin box, which he then forgot about until London expressed a desire to present the jewel to the Queen. When Sir John said he couldn't find it, the Prime Minister himself, Lord Palmerston, sent a plea and one of Sir John's servants remembered there was 'a bit of glass in an old tin box'. Luckily the servant was the sort of person who never throws anything away, and eventually discovered it in the tool-shed. There it was, not even wrapped - the most famous gem of India, the fabled Koh-inoor, the 'Mountain of Light', the jewel to die for (and very many unfortunate people had done just that). And Lawrence didn't have the faintest idea what it was. Three years later, after a public viewing in London, crowds expressed disappointment in the lack of brilliance in the stone. The British colonial officials think much of the British claims So Prince Albert decided that the gem be re-cut to increase its brilfound the Koh-i-noor in 1849, in to power in India. the treasury of the Punjabi capital, Sir John Lawrence, Governor liance, thereby reducing its size Lahore. They confiscated every- General of India, used to tell the from the 186-carat diamond to
its present size of 108.93-carats. However Prince Albert was still dissatisfied with the result and the stone was mounted in a tiara with more than two thousand other royal diamonds. In 1936, the stone was set into the crown of the new Queen Elizabeth, later known as the Queen Mother. In 2002 the crown rested atop her coffin as she lay in state. Interestingly enough though, she had only ever worn this crown once, 65 years earlier, at the Coronation of herself and her husband, King George VI, in 1937. Recently, the actual legal ownership of the Koh-i-noor has once again been brought into question as world leaders vie for its ownership. The Government of India has repeatedly lobbied the British Government and the British monarchy for the return of this diamond. Claims have also been made by Pakistan and Iran. As of 2006 the gem remains in the Tower of London.
THE VISION OF PAKISTAN "It is wrong not to lay the lessons of the past before the future." [Winston Churchill: The Gathering Storm] The association of Pakistan with the countries lying to its West has a long history, reminiscences of which can still be seen in Pakistan's national life today. Due to these influences, it so happened that a distinct nation emerged within the sub-continent that continued to live without a name for centuries, and took to be referred as a religious minority. Hence, when the name of 'Pakistan'1 was allotted to this un-named nation (the areas where Muslims were in majority) and when after the process of self-discovery and self-realization the Muslims realized that they were indeed a 'nation according to any definition' belonging to a 'different religious philosophies, social customs, literatures and civilization'. Then, the reserve formed due to lack of name, deceptive phrases like minority, and the unjust attitude during atrocious Congress2 rule 3,4 ceased to be a reserve anymore, and the nation envisaged the possibility of creating a country for themselves where they could 'develop to the fullest their spiritual, cultural, economic, social and political life'. So, triggered by the Islamic morals and led by their 'Quaid-e-Azam'5 Mohammad Ali Jinnah,6 Muslims of India marched to their destiny of sovereign status and won the battle for Pakistan not with an army but with the power of words written with their determination. It was Jinnah who guided his people to the cause of the freedom. It was Jinnah who stood steadfast for the rights of Muslims of India. And it was indeed Jinnah who led his devoted followers to victory. And all of this with in a decade. It could only have been his utmost devotion and faith in the cause of his dream - the realization of which was thought to be im-
possible, carried by his strong willful character, which led him to carve out a nation out of a subjugated minority and establish a cultural and national home for it. He brought millions of Muslims together on a platform against the two adversaries, each of them far stronger then himself and his community, and allied in their opposition to the creation of Pakistan. Could it have been easy for a man who lived a life deemed modern by the people he was struggling for? How could such a man who studied at London, dressed mostly in the latest English-style suits7 (before 1937), spoke a foreign language (English) which most of the Muslim masses who flocked to listen to his speeches couldn't even understand and married8 out of his religion (Parsi), managed to weld the highly conventional Muslims under his banner of separate Pakistan at the age of sixty-four (in 1940)? He could not have done it unless he staunchly believed that the Islamic values of the community he was supporting were in consonance with progress and modernity, which he practiced. Jinnah's forty-four (1904-48) years public political life justifies that he was the most westernized political leader of Muslims. No Muslim political leader of his time could equal him in terms of modernity and a modern outlook. He believed in moderation, ordered progress, democratic norms, Islamic ideals, integrity, dedication, honesty and hard work. These were the core values he was committed to throughout his political career; these formed the part of his personality and these he aspired to see in his country. Jinnah had a very clear and a straightforward idea about the system of Government he wanted in Pakistan. He wanted to make Pakistan a real Islamic State through democratic process stating that the 'constitution
of Pakistan would be of a democratic type, embodying the essential principles of Islam' as 'Islam and its idealism have taught democracy'. 'Pakistan is not going to be a theocratic state to be ruled by priests with a divine mission as there were many non-Muslims in Pakistan who would share equal rights and privileges as other citizens'. 'Religion, caste or creed will have nothing to do with the affairs of the state' for Islam teaches, equality, justice and fair play for everybody. It may be noted here that, by democracy, Jinnah never meant Western system of democracy, but a sort of Islamic democracy which is at home with Muslims' ethics, aspirations, values and code of morality as the state which he founded was inhabited by people of various races and ethnicities, religions and castes, so a purely western style of democracy could never suit here. Jinnah wanted to see Pakistan an embodiment of progressive, modern, dynamic and forward-looking Islam. Same were the qualities he sought in the nation of his State. He envisioned a nation that is open-minded with high social and moral ethics and highest aims in economic growth, national solidarity and education. Jinnah said that there were three main pillars, which go in making a nation worthy: education, economic and industrial strength, and defence. His famous slogan of Unity, Faith and Discipline were designed precisely to appeal to the Muslims sense of national solidarity. Jinnah rejected western capitalist economic system and emphasized on an economic system based on the concepts of equality and social justice. He believed that Pakistan was blessed with enormous economic resources and potentials and it is for the people to make best use of them. Laying his importance on national consolidation he urged the nation to 'work in
co-operation, forgetting the past' and called provincialism a 'poison' considering it one of the barrier towards the progress and development of a nation. He emphasized the necessity of educating the nation in 'scientific and technical education in order to build up future economic life' so Pakistan could 'compete with the world'. He envisioned the national character of Pakistan built on 'highest sense of honor, integrity, selfless services to the nation, and sense of responsibility' and 'fully equipped to play a part in the various branches of economic life'. But Jinnah was not the only Muslim leader of United India who exercised deep influence over the Muslims of the sub-continent. It is true that Jinnah's determination and his excellent organizing skills were highly important contributing factors, but Jinnah could never create Pakistan, had not the Muslims masses believed in his ideal and faithfully worked with intense zeal for the realization of the same. This consciousness came in the shape of works of literature of poet like Iqbal 9, which reached and touched the hearts of masses. Iqbal through his literature came to have deep influence over the Muslims of the sub-continent. He is credited for initiating the idea of separation, as he was the first prominent public figure to bring forth the demand of Pakistan in his presidential address to the Muslim League's 10 annual session at Allahabad in 1930 as President of the Punjab Muslim League in words which resound in the minds of every Pakistani even today and which by 1940 became so loud that Jinnah adopted it as the ultimate goal. Iqbal is the ideological founding father of the nation and can safely be called a modern Muslim reformer. He was driven to the dream of Pakistan on communal lines with which he ap-
proached the problem of the future of Muslims and pressed for division of India on racial, religious and linguistic lines. Though Iqbal's vision of Pakistan had strong religious overtones owing to his strong Islamic upbringing yet he was the only Muslim intellectual of his time who strived to make Islam meaningful for the 20th Century man. He dreamt of the revival of Islam in its original and pure form and believed in the establishment of an Islamic system based on the principles of Islam. He believed in the possibility of the adjustment of Islam in modern world, emphasizing that the true essence of religion Islam is quite open to accept the modern advancements. Indeed, his greatest conviction lies in his call upon Muslims to undertake reconstruction of Islam and Islamic values in the light of modern times in a way that shows it to be a forward-looking religion that promises to serve as a force for good in the world at large. Like Jinnah he considered democratic system drawn in lines with Islamic principles closest to an ideal Islamic state as European democracy could not be applicable without recognizing the fact of communal groups. He advocated a common ground between tradition and modernity; and impressed upon the Muslims on the necessity of inner change by seeking self-realization and action. Like Jinnah and Iqbal, another person who held strong influence on the Muslims of subcontinent was Sir Syed Ahmed Khan who was the earliest exponent of Muslim Nationalism and made considerable efforts to rehabilitate the Muslims immediately after 1857 rebellion11 in the fields of education, religion, social life and politics. True, that the birth of Pakistan was triggered by factors like political, religious, economic and cultural, but
had it not been for the will of people, the vision of Pakistan could never be realized. Nations can only come into existence if they possess courage to achieve their purpose. And if a nation fails to produce a person with marked leadership abilities their courage could prove futile. Muslims were fortunate to have such leaders in the persons like Jinnah, Sir Syed, Iqbal, Ali Brothers (Maulana Muhammad Ali Jauhar & Maulana Shaukat Ali Jauhar) and Liaquat Ali Khan during the struggle for Pakistan. These leaders were responsible in creating consciousness among Muslim masses for the realization of their vision of Pakistan and for Muslims they were glimmers of hope in the era of disappointments and deceits. All these leaders had the same idea of the type of state they wanted to establish in the name of Pakistan. Where Iqbal sought a modernized country relying on the principles of Quran interpreted from a fresh angle. Likewise Sir Syed and other leaders also encouraged Muslims to seek Western knowledge and mould themselves according to the modern advancements to keep up with the world yet remaining within the limits laid by Islam. Perhaps Jinnah best represented the concept of the state of Pakistan envisaged by these leaders and their followers in his own words as 'Let us lay the foundation of our democracy on the basis of truly Islamic ideals and principles'. The vision of Pakistan does not only lies in history but it also forms a part of our national life. Crescent and star on the national flag is an Islamic symbol signifying progress, enlightenment and knowledge. Even the national anthem reflects Jinnah's vision of Pakistan aspiring for a destiny that is strong and shining, a land that is pure, resolve, leading the way to progress and perfection, glorifying the past and present.
Wedding Ceremonies of Pakistan Nikah, Valima and living happily ever after. But the way these colourful rituals are performed greatly vary.
As the wedding season approaches, we take a look at some of the traditions that make our Pakistani weddings so distinctive to our community. Pakistan is a land of thousand faces, a country simply overflowing with cultural richness. Whatever the preferences, a wedding in Pakistan is good display of customs, traditions, many of which are heavily influenced by foreign customs. Marriage is an important social celebration and people participate with passion and enthusiasm. The rites are imbued with a certain sentimental appeal. Demographically, Pakistan is divided in rural hinterland and urban areas. Common among marriages in rural and urban areas are Mangnee, Mayoon, Mehndi,
Rural areas of Pakistan still remain a largely conservative society, where many young people shy away when it comes to marriages. Exceptions apart, arranged marriages are a cornerstone of rural society. It remains the responsibility of parents and marriages are mostly among people within the same tribe, caste, community, family or locality. This is what happens in rural areas with some minor changes from place to place: After initial understanding and covert messages between families of prospective spouses, the boy’s relatives visit the girl’s family and offer the proposal, on formal acceptance the mangni (engagement) takes place, marriage date is fixed, groom, with friends and relatives goes to the house of the bride in the form of barat (marriage procession) where the nikah (social contact) is performed. The consent of the bride and the groom to the marriage (ijab and qubool) in the presence of at least two witnesses is obtained to solemnize the contract as per the commandment of divine Islam. Guests
are served with sumptuous food (notwithstanding what the law of the land says about the feast). Groom brings home his the bride. This is followed by Valima. Life goes on . . . Moreover, on the arrival of barat, the dowry is displayed for every one to see and at the same place groom’s female relatives show what they have gifted (jewellery and clothing) to the bride. Both sides glorify the gifts. Paradoxically, in Punjab, a night earlier than the marriage date, groom visits homes of his friends and relatives where he is offered money. Other gifts mostly in the form of money (salami) or garlands made of currency notes are presented when groom gets ready for going to bride’s home. Customarily, groom dresses up in attire presented to him by one of his sisters and in return, he gives to his sister(s) what she demands. There are few marriage halls and often the congregations take place in homes and or community centres (called Daras). There few professional caterers. Local tradesmen prepare food and serve. As per the available statistics, divorce rate in the rural areas is
comparatively lower. The core joint family system is still intact. At the other hand, marriages at very young age, consanguineous marriages, marriages without consent of the partners and cross marriages are also common. There is not much of a variation in the core marriage ceremonies in urban areas, only the way they are performed differ. In the cities, the assertive sons and daughters of an educated middle-class are finding new ways of meeting their match. Although many still have arranged marriages, it is no longer unheard of for couples to marry after having fallen in love in college of the workplace, or meeting over the Internet or in a TV show. Court marriages are also not very uncommon. Difference in thinking between modern urban elites and traditional rural families is reflected in marriages in many ways. Norms in the urban society have changed over the years and they are on the constant move. Vulnerable to satellite TV, Internet, higher education and affluence, urban population is open and highly receptive to the waves of modernity. Unlike in the past, the selection of marriage partners now is done from
Educating the World
Erasmus once said, "The main reading and math skills because hope of a nation lies in the proper their schools do not have enough teachers, books or facilities to education of its youth." provide a quality education. Across the world many Knowing the great impact educa- 6. tion has on a nation, we decided children miss out on their educato investigate the various educa- tion because: oThey are made to work to help tion systems around the world. 11 Facts About Education Around support their families, oThey are recruited into armed the World 1. One in five adults in the forces and become child soldiers, developing world — almost 862 oTheir families do not have the million people — cannot read or means to pay for schooling, oDiscrimination and racism unwrite. 2. Most illiterate persons dermine their chance to receive are female. In more than 20 de- an education, veloping nations, illiteracy rates oThey face violence as they pursue their education. This is amongst women exceed 70%. 3. As much as 115 million the case for girls in areas where children of primary school age they are threatened with extreme physical harm (e.g. acid attacks) are not enrolled in school. 4. More than 226 million for the seemingly harmless act of children do not attend secondary attending school. 7. In most developing school. 5. Many children who countries, public school is not do enrol in school do not gradu- free. The costs of books, uniate with even the most basic forms, and teachers’ salaries are
borne by the students’ families. 8. School fees and related costs are a common barrier to education. These charges are a greater burden for children from poor families, and disproportionately affect those who are racial and ethnic minorities, members of Indigenous communities and migrants. 9. Girls are more likely to be excluded from school than boys when there isn’t enough money to go round. As many as two out of three out-of-school children are girls. 10. Social traditions and deep-rooted religious and cultural beliefs are most often the barriers to expanding girls' educational opportunities in undeveloped countries around the world. 11. Educated girls and women are less vulnerable to HIV infection, human trafficking and other forms of exploitation, are more likely to marry
later, raise fewer children who are more likely to go to school, and make important contributions to family income. The world education survey last year ranked the education systems of the world. The results are based on a test given to 470,000 15-year-olds from all over the globe which include numeracy, literacy and science portions. The top ten nations rank as follows: 1. China 2. South Korea 3. Finland 4. Hong Kong 5. Singapore 6. Canada 7. New Zealand 8. Japan 9. Australia 10. Netherlands
the groups that are similar in social characteristics. In present times, urbanites are now most likely to marry individuals who are in similar social group, educational attainment and social class. Another interesting pattern that is now visible is the strong influence of the western society, which has now trickled down its norms to our youth who have proudly inculcated them into being ‘ours’. People in urban areas are slowly but surely moving towards the conjugal family system from our traditional and inherited consanguine system. Twenty years ago the scenario in Pakistani cities was quite the contrary. Families in urban areas are strongly influenced by the environment and by technology in particular. To take a historic overview, as Pakistani society industrialised some 25 years ago, families lost their old patterns and received changed values. This resulted among other things, in smaller families in urban areas of Pakistan. In addition many of the functions, once attributed to the families became the responsibilities of other institutions and individuals. It was because of the shift to a more formal societal structure that romantic love is
replaced by economic and social reasons as a factor influencing the choice of a marriage partner. The role of women has also changed as the family is losing control over the destinies of its female members. Matchmaking by the third party is a preferred way now. This has given rise to match making business. Interested people are asked to provide details of eligible sons and daughters, as well as their requirements from a spouse and matchmakers do rest of he job. Marriages take place at marriage halls and hotels instead of homes. The affluence and wealth makes a large difference in wedding ceremonies, in rural as well as urban areas. The more people have, the more elaborate are the rituals. But spirit everywhere remains the same
Royal Mail’s stamp price rises come into force Customers at Forest Hill Road Post Office say the stamp price rise is 'dreadful' Continue reading the main story Related Stories Q&A: Stamp price rises Ofcom proposes parcel price cap Royal Mail fears downward spiral A rise in the cost of stamps has come into force after weeks of stockpiling by some consumers. A first-class stamp now costs 60 pence, having risen from 46p, while a second-class stamp costs 50p after going up from 36p. Royal Mail said that the price rise was necessary to keep the six-day universal postal service. But the National Pensioners Convention (NPC) said the price rise was another blow to lowincome older people. The vast majority of pensioners still communicated with friends and family through letters, cards and the telephone - rather than email - and so they would be hit disproportionately, said Neil Duncan-Jordan, national officer for the NPC.
Rationing Royal Mail announced on 27 March that the cost of a host of postal services would rise on 30 April. Royal Mail price increases Stamps Old price New price Source: Royal Mail First-class stamp 46p old price 60p new price Second-class stamp 36p old price 50p new price Some shopkeepers and postmasters said the announcement prompted a rush of stamp-buying by customers, including one who said the demand was "almost like Christmas". Royal Mail rationed retailers' purchase of stamps in April to 20% of a retailer's annual allocation. This was to prevent the retailers from gathering extra profit by bulk-buying supplies ahead of the price rise to sell later. The announcement of the price rises came after the regulator Ofcom lifted some price controls on Royal Mail.
Time for Kashmir Solution By: Kuldip Nayar
Governments of both India and Pakistan should transfer all subjects except defence and foreign affairs to Kashmiris and soften the border so that the people of Jammu and Kashmir and Azad Kashmir can meet and jointly plan the development of their region. There was a time when any statement on Kashmir, either by the Prime Minister of India or that of Pakistan, used to create a rumpus. Politicians and the media on both sides would dwell for days on a particular remark. Pakistan Prime Minister Yusuf Reza Gilani said the other day that his country would seek a solution to Kashmir through dialogue and not hostilities. I have not seen any comment inIndia nor have I found any Pakistani Opposition leader or the Press taking any notice of Gilani’s statement. More significant has been the silence of pro-terrorist groups that talk in terms waging jihad on India all the time. The usual Pakistani iteration that Kashmir would not be allowed to remain on the backburner is there. President Asif Ali Zardari said this week that Pakistan had not forgotten Kashmir. But this does not change ground realities or the Line of Control between India and Pakistan. Gilani iterated what late Zulfikhar Ali Bhutto had enunciated in the Shimla Agreement four decades ago. The agreement reads: “In Jammu and Kashmir, the line of control resulting from the ceasefire of Dec. 17, 1971, shall be respected by both sides without prejudice to the recognised position of either side. Neither side shall seek to alter it unilaterally, irrespective of mutual differences and legal interpretations. Both sides further undertake to refrain from the threat of the use of force in violation of this line.” The agreement has stood the test of time for decades and save the Kargil misadventure, things have remained largely peaceful. Perhaps leaders of the Pakistani government, including the hawks, have come to realise that there is no alternative to amity. Perhaps the peace lobby on both sides has expanded so much that even the governments can’t help but notice that and probably that’s why they don’t issue ultimatums with as much regularity as they used to do not so long ago. Perhaps New Delhi’s warning by Prime Minister Jawaharlal Nehru that any attack on Kashmir would be regarded as an attack on India has struck home. Three wars, plus the Kargil misadventure, have proved that New Delhi will resist with all its force any push by Islamabad. Therefore, Prime Minister Gilani’s observation not only makes sense but also throws up another opportunity to make lasting
peace. Both countries have to solve Kashmir or, for that matter, any other problem peacefully. It is a sort of no-war pact without the formality of signing one. Yet Gilani’s statement should not lull India into complacency. Kashmir continues to be a problem. Every now and then, there is an incident in the Valley that lays bare people’s discontent. Even the elected government headed by chief minister Omar Abdullah has pointed out more than once that the Kashmir imbroglio cannot be sorted out withoutPakistan’s participation. India’s armed forces too are not happy with the situation because suc-
cessive Army commanders in Jammu and Kashmir have regarded Kashmir as a political problem and not a military one. Yet, a large number of troops continues to be stationed in Kashmir. And one unfortunate incident after another shows that they have not been trained to deal with domestic troubles. The country’s defence position is understandable but the forces should be deployed along the border and not used for law and order purposes. The stationing of forces within the state only confirms that the government has no solution and it does not know how to settle the problem. True, New Delhi has tackled international opinion effectively. There is hardly any adverse
notice abroad. But this does not solve the problem. At best, it remains suppressed. Still, there is civil society in India that has certain obligations as has a democratic polity. If Kashmiris remain unhappy and the government they elect too feels that the problem has to be sorted out with Pakistan, New Delhi has to face the fact. This does not necessarily mean that Islamabad’s demands have to be met. Pakistan also has to take certain realities into consideration and one of them is that India can never have another division on the basis of religion. The Valley, with a predominantly Muslim population, has gone its own way and has kept at a distance from both the Hindu-majority Jammu and the Buddhist-majority Ladakh. Therefore, when President Asif Ali Zardari says that Pakistan would continue to support Kashmir, he is only underlining the two-nation theory that India buried deep long ago. I do not think that even the intelligentsia in Pakistan has any faith left in that theory. But that is not the point. It is Kashmir which I believe should get attention after Gilani’s olive branch. I do not agree with those who argue that Pakistan has no claim to what it could not get by waging wars. What the two countries have to realise is that they need to give up their entrenched positions. Peace and friendship are more important than hostility. The extremists will continue to talk of hostilities because they have developed a vested interest in an unsettled situation. I have a solution to offer. Both governments should transfer all subjects except defence and foreign affairs to Kashmiris and soften the border so that the people of Jammu and Kashmir and Azad Kashmir can meet and jointly plan the development of their region. They can have their own air service and trade and cultural missions abroad. And, visitors not from the region will be required to seek visa to enter either Kashmir. Azad Kashmir will remain a part of Pakistan and Jammu Kashmir that of India. The case pending before the UN would be withdrawn. A part of my proposal is that the Lok Sabha’s elected members from Jammu and Kashmir should sit in Pakistan’s National Assembly and those of Azad Kashmir in India’s Lok Sabha. This is aimed at setting a pattern for the two countries to come closer in the future.
Pride of Yorkshire comes to Sheffield on Saturday May 12th The "Pride of Yorkshire" showdown between Sheffield's WBC International Super Bantamweight Champion Kid Galahad and Barnsley's Josh Wale will take place at the Hillsborough Leisure centre on Saturday May 12th. Galahad vs. Wale, proudly presented by Hennessy Sports in association with Alma Ingle, will be broadcast live on Channel 5. Kid Galahad who is also known as Barry Awad, dubbed the next Prince Naseem Ahmed beat former 2 times British champion Jason Booth live on Channel 5 to claim the WBC International title back in February and is not underestimating Josh Wale. "Josh is a tough kid and where he comes from it's like the Wild West on a Saturday night that's why he's called the Outlaw, they fight for fun.
The former English champion Josh Wale said "There's a lot of buzz about this kid, but I'm going to burst the bubble big time next month live on Channel 5 when I do a number on him. "This is a massive fight for me and it's a massive fight for him because he's never been in with anyone like me. "I'll give him hell from the start and he best get ready for a war."
"People struggle with the Ingle style but not me I've already beaten two kids from the gym and come May 12 Galahad will become the third" added Wale Also in action will be Sheffield's former WBC champion Junior Witter who will be challenging champion Colin Lynes from Hornchurch, who sensationally beat Lee Purdy "He beat my former stable back in November to claim the mate's, former European, British Welterweight Title. British and Commonwealth When the two last fought back champion Esham Pickering in 2005, Witter beat Lynes on and Mo Khalid, so it's revenge points defending the Eurotime". pean, British and Common-
wealth Light Welterweight titles. Junior Witter said "I have a lot of respect for Colin, he's shown great character to comeback and turned his career around and I believe he's better than before. "I know people expect me
to beat him but it is going to be harder than our first fight, but I'm looking forward to claiming the British title for a second time." Tickets for the Pride of Yorkshire between Kid Galahad and Josh Wale at the Hillsborough Leisure Centre on May
12 priced at £75 and £35 will be on sale from next week. Go on line www.hennessysports.com for more information about the May. 12 show.
Sheffield United Resigned to Play-Offs Sheffield United boss Danny Wilson is virtually resigned to being involved in the npower League One play-offs after seeing his side held 2-2 at home to Stevenage. A win would have taken Wilson's men back to second place above Sheffield Wednesday, who won at Brentford earlier in the day, but they now find themselves having to rely on their arch-rivals slipping up in the final game of the season. Stevenage took a two-goal lead with goals from Joel Byrom and Scott Laird before substitute Richard Cresswell's header gave United hope of mounting a comeback. After United's Kevin McDonald put a drive narrowly wide, Matt Lowton struck in the 85th minute to set up a tense finish. Wilson said: "It's very disappointing. We had some great chances but we didn't convert them. "On the counter-attack they were very strong and the two goals we conceded were poor. The players fought back well but we just didn't have that bit of luck that you need. "We still had chances right at the end but it just wasn't to be. I expect Sheffield Wednesday to win at home next week so that will mean we're in the play-offs. But if we can go to Exeter and win, we'll just see what happens."
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