Thursday, 5 December, 2019 I 7 Rabi-ul-Sani, 1441 I Rs 20.00 I Vol X No 155 I 16 Pages I Lahore Edition
‘Constitutional Crisis’: opp moves sC over CeC appointment g
opp urgeS court to intervene, SayS watchdog will becoMe nonfunctional if cec retireS without noMination of SucceSSor
Shireen Mazari terMS talkS aS poSitive, SayS conSenSuS will be evolved when body MeetS next week
ith Chief Election Commissioner Justice (r) Sardar Raza Khan all set to retire on thursday, the opposition parties have approached the Supreme Court (SC) over the appointment of the new CEC amid a deadlock with the government over the nomination of the new election watchdog chief. Eleven opposition members have signed the petition to the Supreme Court, namely Akram Khan Durrani, Ahsan iqbal, Sardar Ayaz Sadiq, Nayyar hussain Bukhari, Farhatullah Babar, Mian iftikhar hussain, Muhammad Usman Khan Kakar, Muhammad tahir Bizinjo, Muhammad hashim Babar, Muhammad Owais Siddiqui, and Rana Shafiq Khan. the petition, which made the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) and the federal government respondents in the case, said: “incumbent Chief Election Commissioner (CEC) Justice (r) Sardar Raza will retire on December 06.” the current CEC is set to retire on thursday, after which “the ECP will become defunct, thereby halting the entire electoral system of the country”, a petition filed by the opposition stated. Article 213 has been silent in case the bipartisan parliamentary committee fails to reach an agreement, it said. the silence of Article 213 over the situation will create a constitutional crisis, according to the petition. “the Supreme Court is the only path in case of lack of agreement within the parliamentary panel,” the opposition petition further said. According to the plea, remaining two members of the commission will also retire next month. the petitioners have pleaded to the apex court to take an appropriate decision over the matter to thwart a likely constitutional crisis in the country.
Outgoing CEC Justice (r) Sardar Raza z Khan
Reacting to the joint opposition move, Federal Minister for Science and technology Fawad Chaudhry said that it was unfortunate if the opposition would move the apex court over the issue. Fawad urged all parties to “show flexibility and reach a conclusion”. “if the politicians are too immature to agree upon the appointment of a single member [chief election commissioner], how will they unanimously solve bigger issues of the country?” he questioned. Last week, Shehbaz had written a letter to Prime Minister imran Khan, suggesting names for the post of the chief election commissioner. he had proposed the names of three personalities who are “eminently qualified” for the position that comprised former bureaucrat Nasir Mahmood Khosa, former ambassador to the US Jalil Abbas Jilani and ex-civil servant Akhlaq Ahmed tarar. he had maintained that PM imran should have initiated this process of consultation a long time ago. i am starting this procedure to prevent
the ECP from getting non-functional, the PMLN leader added. Earlier, PM Office had raised objections on the names recommended by opposition leader Shehbaz Sharif for the appointment of Chief Election Commissioner. the suggested names were Nasir Mehmood Khosa, Jalil Abbas Jilani and Akhlaq Ahmed tarar. Jaleel Abbas Jilani remained principal secretary of former premier Nawaz Sharif and worked as chief secretary Punjab under CM Shehbaz Sharif. Nasir Mehmood Khosa is considered close to the Sharif family and Akhlaq tarar has also worked as a federal secretary. PARLIAMENTARY BODY FAILS BREAK IMPASSE: Meanwhile, the impasse between the government and opposition on the appointment of the CEC and the Sindh and Balochistan members of the Election Commission of Pakistan continued on Wednesday, as both sides failed to reach a consensus over the issue. the parliamentary committee tasked with deciding the matter met again on Wednesday with human Rights Minister Shireen Mazari in the chair, but the meeting concluded without any progress over the issue. According to reports, the opposition demanded that the government share its nominees for the CEC position before talks could proceed. “the opposition fears that the government may only appoint members to the two vacant seats for Sindh and Balochistan while keeping the CEC’s chair empty,” they quoted members of the meeting as saying. Mazari, after the meeting, claimed that “consensus was developing” on the appointments of the nominees, as she dubbed the meeting “positive”. She said the opposition and government are in agreement that the panel proposed the names of the CEC and members together. the minister said a meeting will now be called next week to reach an agreement on names for the three posts.
‘Niazi-NAB nexus’ seized my properties, claims Shehbaz
Shehbaz’s narrative is ‘based on lies’, says firdous STORIES ON BACK PAGE & 03
IHC orders PIMS to form medical board for examining Zardari's health STORY ON PAGE 02
uS envoy in kabul amid signs talks with taliban to resume STORY ON BACK PAGE
CMYK Thursday, 5 December, 2019
IHC Orders PIMs tO fOrM MedICAl bOArd fOr exAMInInG ZArdArI’s HeAltH ISLAMABAD
HE Islamabad High Court (IHC) on Wednesday ordered the Pakistan Institute of Medical Sciences (PIMS) to form a medical board to determine former president and Pakistan People’s Party (PPP) C0-Chairman Asif Ali Zardari’s ailment and asked to submit a new medical report by December 11. A two-member bench presided by IHC Chief Justice Athar Minallah heard the petition which sought Zardari’s bail on medical grounds. During the hearing, the court inquired about Zardari’s latest
medical report from his lawyer Farooq H Naek. “He has cardiovascular disease. The Punjab government had formed a medical board previously,” Naek replied. Adjourning the hearing till December 11, the court ordered that Zardari’s personal physician to be made part of the new medical board. The PPP leader, who was arrested in June this year for his alleged role in a multi-billion rupees money laundering case, moved the court on Tuesday over a month after the former premier Nawaz Sharif was given similar relief. The government later also permitted Nawaz to fly abroad for treatment. Currently, under treatment at the PIMS hospital in Islam-
abad, Zardari moved the petition through his lawyer and nominated the National Accountability Bureau (NAB) and Islamabad Accountability Court-II as respondents. The petition says Zardari has been suffering from multiple diseases — like diabetes, cervical lumbar and spondylosis, sensory and motor neuropathy with impaired proprioception. According to the petition, Zardari has a Holter monitor attached to his chest, enabling doctors to check and note variations in his heartbeat and blockages in his arteries. It also notes that Zardari is a patient of ischemic heart disease, which means his heart may have an inadequate supply of blood and oxygen.
The petition also states that Zardari suffers from arthritis with a low platelet count, and all these illnesses cannot be treated within the premises of the jail. “The petitioners’ condition makes it evident that his continued incarceration would prove detrimental to his life.” It says the former president requires around the clock attention and with his deteriorating health, his life may be at risk. The petition states that Zardari has been in jail since October 22, 2019, and has not shown any signs of improvement. “The petitioner has spent his entire life in the service of the people of Pakistan and has struggled so much for Pakistan that he has lost his health in the
NAB prosecutor pursuing fake Hamid Khan says accounts case resigns won’t quit PTI ISLAMABAD
Nayyar Rizvi, who had been prosecuting multi-billion money laundering through fake bank accounts case against the Pakistan
People’s Party (PPP) leaders, tendered his resignation on Wednesday as additional prosecutor general of the National Accountability Bureau (NAB). Rizvi sent his resignation to NAB Chairman
Justice (r) Javed Iqbal, saying he could not continue due to personal engagements. Rizvi was appointed as the NAB’s additional prosecutor general in February this year for a term of three years.
BRT’s PC-1 to undergo revision again
NEWS DESK After altering the project twice in the past, the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa government is mulling to revise PC-1 of the Peshawar Bus Rapid Transit project on the pretext of account adjustment, reported a media outlet. It may be noted here that the KP government led by the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) has failed to complete the metro bus project and has missed at least six deadlines in this regard. After the project missed its sixth deadline, KP Information Minister Shaukat Yousafzai had claimed that the project would be completed in 2020 and people would start getting its benefits from next year. He had claimed 87 per cent work on the mega project had been completed. The KP government had also decided to approach the Asian Development Bank
(ADB) to conduct a forensic audit of the BRT project which has fallen massively short on its development targets, achieving mere six per cent progress in the past six months. The ADB will decide who is responsible for the repeated delays in completing the project and carrying out low standard work. Once the bank gets hold of the forensic audit, the government will take legal action against the responsible elements. According to a local media channel, the ADB would determine who among the contractor, consultant, engineer or PDA was dishonest and unprofessional. According to the additional chief secretary, only one per cent work had been conducted in the past six months on the project whereas the secretary was also quoted as saying that the project would not be completed within the expected time.
ISLAMABAD STAFF REPORT
Advocate Hamid Khan, one of the founding members of Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI), on Wednesday said that he will not quit the party “under any circumstances”. The announcement came as part of a strongly worded nine-page response to a show-cause notice issued to him by the party which, on Sunday, suspended the basic party membership of the senior advocate and issued to him a notice for “defaming and maligning” PTI through his statements on print and electronic media. Khan invited the wrath of the party leadership when he accused PTI of playing into the hands of the “Establishment” during a TV show recently. The notice, however, did not go into details of the statements. The show-cause notice, issued by PTI Secretary General Amir Mehmood Kiyani, asked Khan to explain his position in writing within seven days. In his response written to Kiyani, dated December 3, Khan said: “Let me make it loud and clear that I will not quit the party under any circumstances. “The party is my sweat and blood. I have spent thousands of man-hours (sic) to give it its thought and direction. No opportunist, turncoat, land grabber and sugar or other corrupt mafias can force me out of the party.” He added that he would do everything possible, within the limits of the law and the Constitution, to “protect and defend” his party membership. “I will stand by my fellow party workers through thick and thin, come what may, I will be their voice. I will not abandon them to be victimised by outrageously evil elements that have entered the party.” Khan also took an issue with how he was informed of the notice, saying he had learnt through the media about it. “It is strange that though the matter concerns [the] internal working of the party, yet you have chosen to release it to the media, print as well as electronic. It is a highly improper conduct on your part,” he said, adding that since Kiyani had gone to the media, he too had the right to release his re-
sponse. Referring to Kiyani as the “purported secretary-general” of PTI, Khan said that he was surprised to learn Kiyani had become the party’s secretary-general and Arshad Dad had been replaced. “In any case, I have no issue with you becoming secretary-general of the party because you are a senior member.” However, Khan said he was “sad” to learn that Kiyani was under inquiry on “serious corruption charges” that had arisen during his tenure as health minister. “I hope that you have cleared yourself of such charges because you should not be serving in such an important capacity within PTI, being yourself under cloud. It can embarrass the party. So, for the good of the party, you should have yourself cleared at the earliest.” With regards to the show-cause notice, Khan said: “It is indeed objectionable that before service of the so-called [show-cause notice] SCN, I found it being displayed on the social, economic and print media which obviously is a malafide act on your part, meant only to tarnish my image.” He added that showcause notices are required to be “specific and detailed”. “Nevertheless, I do not hold you responsible for that. If the entire legal of the government could not draft a proper notification for appointment of COAS [chief of army staff], as observed by the Honorable Supreme Court, how can I blame you for not being able to draft a proper showcause notice.” The disgruntled founding PTI member said “vague, ambiguous and unintelligible allegations” had been made and details of where he had made the remarks, for example, had not been specified. “When did I malign/defame the party which I love more than you do?” he asked. “It is not possible to respond to such a vague, ambiguous and preposterous SCN, based on unfounded allegations.” Khan said that he believed his opinions about the “legality and constitutionality of the extension of the army chief’s tenure and his stance on the accountability of judges had disturbed the sensitivities of those belonging to the powers that be and my party has been pressurised by those quarters to take action against me”.
process.” The petition, while claiming that the former president is being victimised due to political reasons and has been wrongly implicated in false and fabricated cases, requests the court to grant him post-arrest bail on medical grounds in Park Lane reference which is connected with the money laundering case. Zardari’s sister, Faryal Talpur, who is also under custody in connection with the same case, has also sought bail though on various grounds. She claims that she had been arrested by NAB on June 14 but the accountability watchdog has not been able to prove anything against her during its five months investigation, adding that she could not be left at the mercy of jail officials. Earlier, an accountability court rejected Zardari’s petition to transfer him to Karachi for medical treatment. During the hearing, Zardari’s lawyer Sardar Latif Khosa requested the court to shift the case to Karachi for better medical treatment, adding that Zardari’s entire medical history is in Karachi.
Justice Gulzar Ahmed notified as new CJP ISLAMABAD: The Federal Ministry of Law on Wednesday notified the appointment of Justice Gulzar Ahmed as the new Chief Justice of Pakistan (CJP). Justice Gulzar will take charge as the country’s chief justice on December 21, a day after the retirement of Justice Asif Saeed Khosa. The appointment was approved by President Arif Alvi. Justice Ahmed was born on February 2, 1957, in Karachi to the family of Noor Muhammad, a distinguished lawyer. His elementary schooling was from the city’s Gulistan School, according to the Supreme Court website. He then went on to earn a Bachelor of Arts degree from Government National College, Karachi after which he obtained his law degree from SM Law College, Karachi. He enrolled as an advocate on January 18, 1986, and joined the High Court on April 4, 1988. Subsequently, he became an advocate of the Supreme Court on September 15, 2001. Justice Ahmed was elected honorary secretary of the Sindh High Court Bar Association in Karachi for the year 1999-2000. Throughout his legal practice, he mostly remained on the civil-corporate side, serving as the legal advisor to numerous multinational and local companies, banks and financial institutions. STAFF REPORT
Indian police arrest over dozen youth in IOK SRINAGAR: Indian police arrested over a dozen youth during house raids in Srinagar, Baramulla and Pulwama districts in occupied Jammu and Kashmir on Wednesday. At least five youth were arrested by the police in Srinagar on the charges of attacking Indian forces with stones and petrol bombs in Saraf Kadal, Bohri Kadal, Rajori Kadal, Khanyar and Nowhatta areas of the city. Another four persons were arrested in Baramulla for allegedly hurling stones on Indian Army vehicles. Some youth were also arrested in Pulwama district on different charges. There are reports about more arrests of National Conference leaders and activists in the Kashmir Valley. The detainees have been lodged at Central jail, Srinagar, and police stations. Meanwhile, Awami National Conference (ANC) President, Khalida Shah, in a media interview in Srinagar, termed the detention of political leaders, including three former puppet chief ministers, as murder of democracy. She said that depriving political prisoners of basic facilities was an act of revenge. “It seems as if emergency has been declared in J&K,” she said and demanded immediate release of political prisoners. AGENCIES
CMYK Thursday, 5 December, 2019
sHeHbAZ’s nArrAtIve Is ‘bAsed On lIes’: fIrdOUs ISLAMABAD
PECIAL Assistant to the Prime Minister for Information and Broadcasting Dr Firdous Ashiq Awan on Wednesday called out PML-N President Shehbaz Sharif over his recent press conference and said that “his narrative is based on lies” She said in the London presser, the opposition leader portrayed himself as a pious man but when the National Accountability Bureau (NAB) seized his properties the other day, he did not say a single word about that case against him. “He should have informed the nation when his son, son-in-law, nephews and other family members who stay in London would return to the country,” she added. The special assistant lamented the fact that in his hour-long press conference, the PML-N president did not give any updates
on the health of former prime minister Nawaz Sharif, who is in London to seek medical treatment. “Shehbaz presented a baseless narrative through lies and tried to throw dust in the eyes of the entire nation. Claiming victory in an under-trial case is surprising. Shehbaz sahib, you have not been given a certificate of innocence,” she added.She said that the Prime Minister Imran Khan promised the nation to bring back looted wealth of the country and the process started yesterday when the UK National Crime Agency (NCA) announced on its website that Rs38.50 billion recovered from a Pakistani family and returned to Pakistan. The country was plundered for 72 years but no one dared to bring back looted money but PM Imran dared to do so, she added. The government, she said, would keep exposing the faces of opposition and continue to bring back the looted money to Pakistan.The special assistant said that
PM Imran takes pride in belonging to the Niazi tribe. “Sharif brothers should now tell the nation about their bloodline as otherwise I will have to unveil the truth," she added.She said that the government was working to materialise the prime minister’s vision of across-the-board accountability and the rule of law in the country. She added that the fact that sitting Punjab ministers, who are facing false corruption cases and are under NAB custody, reflects the prime minister's policy on accountability without discrimination. She said that on the request of the opposition it was decided in the parliamentary committee for the appointment of chief election commissioner (CEC) and members of the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) to announce their names at once within one week.“On one hand, the opposition sought a one-week time for consensus and on the other they approached the Supreme Court (SC) to seek
interpretation of article 213-A,” she added."The honourable courts are giving respect to the parliament and referring the matter of national importance to the parliament whereas the opposition is time and again seeking indulgence of the apex court," she further said.Firdous said that the government did not want ECP to become dysfunctional and went to the extent of creating consensus on the appointment of its member from Balochistan but the opposition deliberately delayed his name for one week.The special assistant also denounced the attack on Dawn’s office in Islamabad, adding that action was taken by the government immediately after the protest came to her notice. She said that the government “will discourage such acts because they cannot be allowed”.Responding to a question pertaining to the protests outside Dawn’s office, she said, “It is our responsibility to protect your lives and property. To protect Pakistan’s interests is the media’s responsibility.” “Hurt my political interests, this liking, disliking of politicians is normal. In politics, two different narratives go side by side. But where the state’s interest is concerned, you have to separate politics and the state. I am with the media, whenever there is injustice. I am the spokesperson of the media industry as well,” she concluded.
PM urges proper utilisation of govt properties ISLAMABAD STAFF REPORT
Clear newspapers' dues within 20 days, sHC tells sindh govt KARACHI STAFF REPORT
Expressing its displeasure over nonpayment to media, Sindh High Court has ordered the government of Sindh to pay outstanding dues to CPNE member’s newspapers within 20 days. This order was passed on Wednesday by a division bench comprising of Justice Muhammad Ali Mazher and Justice Agha Faisal during hearing a contempt of court application filed by Dr Jabbar Khattak on behalf of the Council of Pakistan Newspaper Editors (CPNE) regarding outstanding dues. Division bench enquired from officers of information department Sindh that had advertising agencies paid dues to newspapers after receiving payments from information department? “Has advertising agencies paid remaining 85 percent of amount to newspapers after deducting their 15 percent commission? What is the mechanism of information department in case the payment is not made by advertising agencies to newspapers after receiving the outstanding bills from this department?,” Justice Muhammad Ali Mazher inquired. The Court expressing its displeasure over non-payment of dues to newspapers, asked why former provincial secretary information and other contemnors should not be ordered to appear before the court? Justice Muhammad Ali Mazher ordered that newspapers of CPNE members must be paid their all outstanding for advertisements published whether direct or through advertising agencies within 20 days followed by submission of its compliance report in the court. Dr. Jabbar Khattak, Secretary General CPNE told The Court that after order of the court, government of Sindh had made payments of around one billion rupees to advertising agencies. “But despite this court order, dues of newspapers have not cleared,” he added. During the hearing, representatives of CPNE complained, that information department of Sindh had violated the court orders by not providing details to CPNE regarding payments made to advertising agencies. Division bench has adjourned the case till next hearing on January 21. A large number of editors, journalists and media workers were present during court proceedings.
Prime Minister Imran Khan on Wednesday said that stern action would be initiated against officers found to be creating hurdles in the identification of non-utilised government-owned properties. The prime minister during a meeting over the utilisation of the numerous properties owned by different ministries and federal departments said that in the past, non-utilisation of the government’s assets in an effective manner had manifested criminal negligence. The prime minister directed asset management committee, relevant federal ministries, and provincial governments to resolve all matters pertaining
to the identified properties within a week, so that decision over their proper utilization could be implemented. Privatization Secretary Rizwan Malik apprised the meeting about the progress made in the proper utilisation of properties owned by different ministries and federal government departments and their possible privatisation. He said under the decisions of the federal cabinet, during the months of February to March, every ministry was tasked to identify at least three such properties. In the first phase, different ministries had identified 32 such properties so far. The secretary added that services of a financial adviser were hired in October for making assessment value of these properties, and giving final
Opp senators call for debate on Kashana child abuse issue ISLAMABAD: Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) Senator Aisha Raza Farooq on Tuesday submitted an adjournment motion in the Senate Secretariat, urging the Upper House to adjourn its proceedings and take up the “urgent and very serious matter of exploitation of underage orphan girls at Darul Aman Kashana”. The motion, signed by senators of the opposition parties, referred to allegations levelled by Afshan Latif, a former superintendent at the Government’s Home for Destitute Girls (Kashana), who accused a government official of pressuring her to marry “underage girls” to fulfill the demands of some higher government officials and a provincial minister. “This is an issue of national importance and the proceedings of the Senate must be adjourned
shape to the future mechanism in this regard. He said that marketing for these properties would be held at the Dubai Expo to entice overseas Pakistanis and other investors towards such precious assets. The prime minister said that proper utilization of these properties and lands worth billions of rupees which had been kept unused for years and spending of income generated from their use upon the public welfare and provision of basic facilities like schools, colleges, and hospitals, were the significant parts of the government’s policy. He observed that different federal departments and institutions had been running into annual losses despite having such precious assets.
immediately to discuss this,” the motion read. In a video that went viral on social media last week, Afshan Latif that she was being victimised by the government for revealing the truth. She further said that she was being pressurised by the Social Welfare Department director general of “misusing” the orphan girls living in the shelter homes under the guise of giving them shelter and food. A case pertaining to the allegations was filed in the Lahore High Court by social worker Majeedul Haq and is currently being heard. A factfinding committee formed by the Human Rights Commission of Pakistan (HRCP) is also probing the claims. In a statement posted on its website, HRCP said that based on the observations of its officials who visited Kashana, the “institution appears to be well run and its residents well-looked after, although this is based on the team’s observations and on the testimony of a low-income single parent whose daughter has been a resident for eight years and has benefitted from her stay”. STAFF REPORT
Us welcomes Moody's upgrade in Pakistan's credit outlook Crediting Pakistan’s Finance Ministry’s reform efforts and the International Monetary Fund (IMF) programme, the incharge of South Asia affairs at the US State Department, Alice Wells, on Wednesday welcomed Moody’s revision in Pakistan’s credit outlook. In a tweet shared by the State Department, Acting Assistant Secretary for South and Central Asia Wells added: “With bold economic reforms, Pakistan can boost growth, attract private capital, and expand exports.” New York-based credit rating agency Moody’s on Monday raised Pakistan’s economic outlook from negative to stable on the back of the country’s reforms supported by an IMF programme, but kept its credit rating unchanged at B3. The ratings firm said improvements in the balance of payments was a primary driver of the rating action, but added that foreign exchange buffers would still take time to rebuild. The upgrade was welcomed by the Ministry of Finance, which attributed the development to an “improvement in the balance of payments position, supported by policy adjustments and currency flexibility”. Addressing a press conference on Tuesday, Adviser to the Prime Minister on Finance Dr Abdul Hafeez Sheikh said: “This report has shown the world that the reforms brought about by Pakistan in its economy are being appreciated by the world’s leading financial institutions.” Moody’s had in June last year lowered Pakistan’s outlook to negative from stable owing to erosion in foreign exchange buffers due to heightened external pressures. Its representatives had visited Islamabad on November 27 and noted that Pakistan’s economic fundamentals, including its economic strength and susceptibility to event risks, had not materially changed even though institutional strength had increased and financial strength decreased. NEWS DESK
Govt appoints new prosecutor in Musharraf treason case ISLAMABAD: The government on Wednesday appointed advocate Ali Zia Bajwa as the new prosecutor in the high treason case against former president General (r) Pervez Musharraf. According to details, Bajwa will represent the prosecution as assistant attorney general prosecution before a special court. Earlier an Islamabad High Court (IHC) bench had prevented a special court from issuing its verdict in the case. The IHC gave this order on a petition filed by the interior ministry asking it to set aside the special court’s decisions to announce its judgment in the high treason case on November 28. Accepting the ministry’s petition, the IHC barred the special court from announcing the verdict. “For reasons to be recorded later, we allow writ petition…filed by the Ministry of Interior,” the court had ruled, directing the federal government to notify a new prosecutor or a team of prosecution in the treason case by December 5. STAFF REPORT
Global media watchdogs call on Pakistan to condemn attack on Dawn’s oﬃces ISLAMABAD STAFF REPORT
Global media watchdogs — Committee to Protect Journalists (CPJ) and Reporters Without Borders (RSF) — on Wednesday called on Pakistani authorities to condemn the besieging of Dawn offices in Islamabad and to prevent demonstrations against the newspaper from turning violent. Earlier on Monday, a few dozen unidentified people staged a protest outside Dawn offices in the capital over the publication of a news report regarding the Pakistan-origin of the London Bridge attacker who stabbed two persons to death last week. The charged mob, carrying banners and chanting slogans
against the newspaper, remained outside the office building for nearly three hours, besieging the premises and making the staffers hostage. Security guards at the media house had to lock the gates to prevent the protesters from entering the premises before police and officers of the capital administration arrived. A day later, dozens of people staged a protest outside Karachi Press Club against the newspaper and made threats against its staffers. They also threatened to besiege the offices of the media group if “prompt action was not taken against the management and outlets of the organisation for publishing false news.” “Pakistanis have every right to object to and demonstrate against the Dawn newspaper over its coverage, but
threatening violence steps way over the line,” said Kathleen Carroll, CPJ’s board chair, in a statement issued on Tuesday. “We call on Pakistani authorities to take all appropriate measures to ensure the safety of Dawn’s staff.” Daniel Bastard, the head of RSF’s Asia-Pacific desk, also condemned the incident, saying: “This show of force constitutes yet another absolutely unacceptable act of intimidation towards Pakistan’s leading daily.” “The information we have obtained indicates that the federal government was, at the very least, a passive accomplice if not the actual instigator of behavior that is unacceptable in a democracy,” said the RSF statement. “We call on Prime Minister Imran Khan to publicly
condemn these excesses, failing which he will be held personally responsible for this alarming press freedom violation.” A day earlier, the Council of Pakistan Newspapers Editors (CPNE) President Arif Nizami had also expressed concern over the protests demanded the government put an end to attacks on the media. In a statement issued on Tuesday, Pakistan Today’s chief editor had said that under the incumbent regime, the attacks on journalism have increased manifold which points towards its hostility towards the so-called fourth pillar of the state. He had also questioned the silence of the government officials on the incidents, saying the policies employed by the government against media are hurting journalists.
thieF niCks Rs0.1M PRAdA shoes outside Mosque A man’s who had gone to pray at a mosque on Lahore’s Mason Road on November 17 reported that his designer shoes worth Rs0.1 million were stolen from outside.Sheraz Bashir, a resident of Defence, said that he had bought the shoes from Italy from the famous brand Prada. He said that the thought that his shoes would be stolen did occur to him but he was more concerned with saying his Maghrib prayers. He also added that he had put each shoe in a different rack as a safety measure but the thief had made the effort to look for both as neither was found on his return. It is pertinent to mention here that Dolphin Force personnel were standing outside the mosque, however, they were cluelessness about what was going on outside the mosque and advised the man to register a case at a police station. Further, the Civil Lines police registered a case on his complaint after 16 days. NEWS DESK
Thursday, 5 December, 2019
WEATHER UPDATES 0 THURSDAY
PAshtun student ACtivist seeks BAil in ‘sedition’ CAse LAHORE
LAMGIR Wazir – a student activist, who was arrested for his participation in the recently held Student Solidarity March – filed a bail petition at a local court in Lahore on Wednesday. Wazir, who participated in the march, was detained from the university a day after the event before a case
was registered against him. A day later, it emerged that police had registered cases on sedition charges against the organisers and participants of the Student Solidarity March held on Nov 29. According to the FIR against Wazir, complainant Sub Inspector Mohammad Nawaz said he was on patrol when he received information that a rally of 250-300 people led by the student leaders was being taken out. “The speakers incited the students
against the state and its institutions and speeches and slogans were recorded on mobile phones and can also be checked through PPIC3 cameras,” he said. However, in his bail petition submitted on Wednesday, Wazir asserted his innocence and stated that the allegations leveled against him were “false”. According to the petition, no slogans were shouted against the state and no loudspeaker was found in his possession or on the scene. It added that Wazir was prepared to post
bail and to show up for court appearances, should he be granted bail. The petition also stated, “The procedure laid down by the apex court of the country for recording and use of video evidence has not been followed by the police”. Further, no specific “anti-state” comments were mentioned in the FIR. Accepting the bail application, the court directed the prosecution and the Punjab police to submit a reply by December 5.
Punjab police given 15-day deadline to recover abducted girl LAHORE INP
The Lahore High Court (LHC) on Wednesday gave a 15-day deadline to Punjab police for the recovery of an abducted girl from Kasur. The directive was issued by the court during the hearing a case related to a girl earlier kidnapped from Kasur. The petitioner, Hameeda Bibi,
told LHC that the police department is not taking steps despite her daughter was missing since November. Capital City Police Officer (CCPO) Zulfiqar Hameed was also present in the hearing. During the hearing, the judge said to CCPO Hameed: “You are getting salaries from the taxes being paid by the nationals. The court is giving 15 days to recover the girl. In case of failure to recover
the abducted girl, the court will summon inspector general and we will also initiate proceedings of the contempt of court against you.” Later on, Hameed pleaded the court to grant more time for the recovery of the abductee. However, the judge noticed that the police department had already sought “enough time” during the course of court hearings. Later, the hearing was adjourned till Dec 18.
CM Buzdar orders action against hoarders and profiteers LAHORE: Punjab Chief Minister Usman Buzdar on Wednesday ordered action against profiteers and hoarders across the province. While chairing a high-level meeting in the provincial capital, the chief minister called on concerned authorities to ensure the sale of food items on government notified rates. CM Buzdar also added that hoarders and profiteers do not deserve any leniency and directed price control magistrates to play an effective role against them. Earlier on September 16, CM Buzdar had ordered a crackdown on profiteers and hoarders across the province. According to a statement, the chief minister had directed the cabinet committee for price control from Saudi Arabia to start a crackdown against illegal profiteers. He had further said that sale of essential items should be ensured at fixed rates. STAFF REPORT
Fire erupts at Gujranwala asphalt plant GUJRANWALA: Fire that had broken out in an asphalt plant here on Wednesday was quickly extinguished after firefighting operations were carried out for over one hour. According to reports, fire erupted at the plant on Hafizabad road near Chahal Kalan, which quickly spread to four trucks carrying bitumen. Firefighters reached the spot and doused the flames in a daring operation. “The fire erupted when the engine of a truck overheated during shifting of the bitumen,” rescue sources said. However, no losses of life or injuries occurred in the blaze, reports added. Four trucks at the asphalt plant were gutted in the fire, reports claimed. STAFF REPORT
Man kills wife, best friend, baby girl in the name of honour MULTAN: A man murdered his wife, his best friend whom he suspected was her paramour and his baby girl in an incident of 'honour' killing here on Wednesday. According to reports, Yaseen stabbed his wife Shamshad Bibi, 22, Murtaza, 40, and 10-month-old baby girl, Kiran, to death at Adda Mahewala on old Shujaabad Road. The rescue officials and heavy contingent of police reached the crime scene after getting information about the triple murder. The slain persons were residents of Shah Jamal area and working at the same brick kiln, police said, adding that the bodies were transferred to Multan’s Nishtar Hospital for postmortem. The accused escaped along with his son after committing the crime, police said. A police team has been formed to probe into the crime. INP
Man disarms street criminal, hands him over to police GUJRANWALA: A street criminal was handed over to police after a man foiled his attempt to mug him in Gujranwala’s Nowshera Road. According to reports, the dacoit had attempted to snatch the man’s mobile phone and money at gunpoint but was caught in the act after his victim got control of his gun and pulled him down his motorcycle. Locals later arrived at the scene and got hold of the criminal before handing him over to police. Earlier this month, four people were killed on their way to court in Nowshera Virka tehsil of Gujranwala on Sunday. The victims, identified as Azam, a resident of Dera Shah Jamal, his son Tauqeer, nephew Tahir and friend Sufian died on the spot. In the FIR, the family of the victims accused a relative, Iqbal of killing the four men as Azam had been granted bail in a case days earlier which involved the murder of Iqbal’s nephew. Police officials said that they have started searching for the suspects and that investigation is underway. STAFF REPORT
Previous govt neglected health and education sectors: Iqbal Punjab Information Minister Mian Aslam Iqbal on Wednesday said that there was no need of spending huge amounts of money on projects such as the orange line metro train when health care and education in the province were in dire straits. The provincial minister further said that instead of spending Rs300 billion on the orange train project the previous government should instead have directed these funds towards building schools, filtration plants, and hospitals. Speaking to the media at the inauguration of a water filtration plant in Gulberg
area of Lahore, Iqbal said that the Sharif family had not built a single hospital during their time in power where they could get themselves treated. “If any member of the Sharif family gets sick then their well-being should be sought after giving them a ride of the metro”, he added. He said that the Sharif family had looted the country of trillions of rupees. “No one is an angel and those who did wrong, suffered from its consequences”, he said, adding that those who plundered the nation should be treated as thieves. NEWS DESK
Thursday, 5 December, 2019
14th polio case reported from Sindh KARACHI STAFF REPORT The number of polio cases reported in Sindh this year has gone up to 14 as the Emergency Operation Centre for Polio confirmed a new case on Wednesday. A nine-month-old boy, identified as Hasnain from Larkana, has contracted polio. According to EOC officials, the polio case surfaced in Larkana’s UC Karani on November 9. According to his parents, the child received four doses of the Oral Polio Vaccine during a campaign and three doses during routine vaccination. Officials say the polio virus in the environment in Karachi and other parts of Sindh must be dealt with.
CSS age limit to be reduced by two years NEWS DESK the government has decided to reduce the age limit for the Central Superior Services (CSS) examinations from 30 years to 28 years, whereas the age limit for government employees has also been reduced from 32 years to 28 years, a local news outlet reported on Wednesday. Reportedly, CSS would be renamed Central Services of Pakistan and the difference between social science and pure science candidates would also be reduced. the government has also suggested the inclusion of percentile score system to provide equal opportunities to students, while removing quota for candidates from backward areas, the report added. the report further stated that a special quota would be set up on the basis of education background instead.
Biodiverse Pakistan failing to cash in on ecotourism KARACHI
aKIStaN is often seen through the prism of terrorism and security, but it is undoubtedly one of handful countries that offer a unique blend of history and biodiversity to the eco-lovers. From the snow-capped peaks in the north, and glistening waters in the south together with limitless opportunities to watch wildlife, sail in the mighty Indus river, and deep-sea diving in the arabian Sea, this South asian nuclear state has much more to attract the eco-lovers. Northern Gilgit-Baltistan region, which borders neighbouring China, is home to the six peaks of over 8,000-meter altitude, including the world’s second tallest peak, K-2. In addition to that, the region has over 5,000 large and small glaciers and more than 100 lakes, which jointly make up the world’s largest freshwater reservoir. also, the eco-lovers can witness the endangered snow leopard and brown bear, in addition to 300 species of wildlife in the breathtaking region. One can sail in the Indus to witness blind dolphins — also known as Indus dolphins. Locally known as “Bhulan” and only found in the River Indus — mainly in a 1,300-kilometer (807-mile) long stretch between northeastern and southern Pakistan — the mammal is blind because it does not have a crystal eye lens. towards the mountains such as in Khunjerab National Park in Gilgit-Baltistan, there are guaranteed sightings of the himalayan Ibex and if one travels to northwestern Chitral near afghanistan border, then markhor — the country’s national animal. there are opportunities to watch wildlife, marine turtles nesting near southern port city of Karachi together with very approachable Kirthar and hingol National Parks in southern Sindh and southwestern Balochistan provinces, offering a mix of both history and biodiversity. But, according to local experts, the country has failed to exploit the huge potential of its unique biodiversity, due to multiple reasons, mainly security concerns, lack of facilities, and capacity building. “Pakistan is a very unique country with countless ecotourism attractions. It has mountain ranges with exceptional
terrain, wetlands and numerous opportunities such as skiing, paragliding, and deep sea diving,” Uzma Khan, a Lahore-based expert who regularly writes on environment and wildlife, told anadolu agency. however, she observed the security concerns compounded by inability to profile the country’s eco-richness had kept the international tourists away from Pakistan. BARRIERS: asma Ezdi, who works for Pakistan chapter of the World Wide Fund for Nature, cited lack of an integrated approach to tourism planning and investment, lack of capacity among public and private stakeholders, and insufficient promotion of sustainable products and services at tourist destinations, as major barriers in promotion of ecotourism in Pakistan. also, she added, absence of monitoring and evaluation system for tourism was another key reasons behind Islamabad’s failure to market its rare biodiversity. “these barriers and unchecked population growth have led to various issues, such as environmental degradation, lack of solid and water waste management, inefficient resource use, non-renewable energy sources and ill-planned development, at tourist destinations”, she told anadolu agency. Rana aftab, a member of the recently formed National tourism Coordination Board (NtCB), a state-run entity, voiced a similar view. he cited lack of planning for the government’s part, lack of capacity building and inter-departmental coopera-
tion as other reasons behind a static growth in eco-tourism. “Eco-tourism is a specialized field. It requires lesser investment compared to other fields of tourism, but an active community involvement,” said aftab, who is head of the NtCB’s ecotourism committee. Sustainable tourism Foundation Pakistan — a nongovernmental organization that works for promotion of ecotourism in the country — last year launched an ecotourism project for conservation of Indus Dolphins. the organization has also trained local fishermen to arrange river ride for tourists to witness blind dolphins. In addition, it is also working on two other projects for conservation of the centuries-old culture of Kalasha valley in Chitral district, and near-extinct snow leopard in hoper valley of Gilgit-Baltistan. Eventually, the two sites, aftab said, would be declared as eco-tourist destinations. SLIGHT IMPROVEMENT: Uzma Khan reckoned that the country’s otherwise dwindling eco-tourism had shown some improving signs in recent years. “I think it is on the track as there is a lot of focus on improving facilities and profiling tourism to attract foreign and local tourists,” Khan opined. “Media and foreign tourists are playing a positive role is profiling Pakistan’s eco-tourism”, she said, referring to several foreign tourists’ who have written blogs and posted videos on social media of Pakistan’s scenic tourists destinations in recent months. Khan termed a significant improvement in security a key factor that attracted foreign travel bloggers and vloggers to visit Pakistan in recent months. “But a lot still needs to be done to make Pakistan’s tourism up to the mark”, she went on to say. aftab partially agrees with Khan, opining “Ecotourism is in an infancy stage in Pakistan. But we have a great potential to emerge as an ecotourism nation within next three to four years, if seriousness is shown”. he said the NtCB’s ecotourism committee had identified over 100 sites across the country, which would be developed as tourism destination in coming years with the help of local communities who would avail the economic benefit of eco-tourism in their respective areas. Out of 100, aftab added, 30 sites could immediately be turned into ecotourism hotspots.
India’s cabinet approves Citizenship Amendment Bill NEW DELHI AGENCIES
India’s cabinet signed off Wednesday on legislation that stands to give citizenship to certain religious minorities but not Muslims, in what critics say is a fresh attempt to sideline the 200-million-strong community. Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), re-elected in a landslide in May, has long been accused of following a “hindutva” agenda favouring officially secular India’s majority hindus. the amendments to the six-decade-old Indian Citizenship act, approved by Modi’s cabinet on Wednesday, could go before the lower house of parliament as soon as this week. the bill would grant nationality to hindus, Buddhists, Sikhs, Christians, Jains, and
Parsis fleeing persecution in Muslim-majority Bangladesh and afghanistan even without any documentation. Modi’s party has said Muslims were not included because they are able to take refuge in Islamic nations across the globe. Senior minister Prakash Javadekar told reporters on Wednesday that the legislation would follow the principles of “natural justice” and is “not against anyone”. the Modi government tried to get similar legislation passed in its first term but failed to garner enough support in the upper house, and it is unclear whether it would succeed there this time. apart from stoking unease among Muslims, the proposed changes have also provoked anger in northeast India that for decades has seen major influxes of people of different religions — including hindus.
Modi’s right-hand man, home Minister amit Shah, held talks with representatives from the region on tuesday over their concerns. Shah has been vocal in pushing through the bill that he says is aimed at “saving the lives” of persecuted religious communities in neighbouring Muslim-majority countries. he has also proposed a “national register of citizens” that he said this week would see “each and every infiltrator identified and expelled” from India by 2024. Shashi tharoor from the main opposition Congress party told reporters on Wednesday that the bill “violated” the basic idea of a secular India as pushed by Mahatma Gandhi, calling the legislation “fundamentally unconstitutional”. “It is simple. Citizenship CaNNOt be determined by or linked to religion,”
tweeted Sitaram Yechury, a senior politician from the Communist Party of India. Under Modi, the Islamic-sounding names of several cities have been changed, while some school textbooks have been altered to downplay Muslims’ contributions to India. there has been a string of lynchings of Muslims over cows — sacred for many hindus — and other hate crimes, including Muslims forced to perform hindu chants. In august, the Modi administration scrapped the special status of Indian occupied Jammu and Kashmir, India’s only Muslim-majority state, in what his government said was aimed at boosting the local economy and rooting out corruption but international reports of human rights violations and a communication blackout suggest otherwise.
Is the hype of pasteurised milk, right? MARINA PERVAIZ
hat is the hype about Pasteurized Milk when we don’t even know how the milk actually tastes like, has the time already come where we don’t know about how the milk tastes? People are unsure about the true essence of it or is there still time where we can be saved and have the basic necessity nature has given to us.We are hearing news about our governmentworking on stopping the adulteration mafia who is eating our nation like a termite. according to news these days Punjab Food authority started an initiative about banning loose milk and making pasteurized milk the only milk we drink. It was in no time that the law
passed in 2017 about pasteurized milk coming into existence. PFa being a vigilant food authority started working on it but we still could not halt adulteration mafia and now in 2019 when we see Prime Minister Imran Khan giving us high hopes on removing all kinds of corruption in Pakistan, we expected him to solve food safety issues as well. and in the record time of 14 months we have seen that they have initiated the process of pasteurized milk. We have seen food authorities working on providing pure milk under the instructions of PM Imran Khan and on experimental level they have also made the sale and preparation of pasteurized milk possible in the provincial capital but it is on experimental basis only as they also did not ban loose milk fully and to ensure the provision of pure milk pasteurized milk seems to be the right choice for our nation. Lahore which is known for its eatery places and as Lahori’s are also famous
for eating adulterated food such as Donkey, Frog etc. the best step to shut everybody’s mouth could not be better than starting pasteurization process from Lahore itself. In a recent survey conducting by PFa and with PM Imran Khan instructions, it was examined in Lahore, township around 93% of general public is willing to accept pasteurized milk regardless of its high prices as they want to provide the best for their children they are eager to help government at every step they will take in the development of Pakistan and by removing food adulterants in however manner. PFa went door to door to ask common people about their viewpoints about what milk should be provided to people and as the percentage shows; pasteurized milk got its win. But this is only one town of one city there is still a long way to go for the government; what we can do is that hope for the best and believe what the authorities are doing for our nation. We as a nation are not sure about
what food we are consuming and when somebody tries to help us, we snub them in whatever manner we can. this is not any political fight where we are divided between parties; this is a fight we all have been fighting in hospitals, homes, schools etc. on individual level and now when we have authorities who are actively eradicating the adulteration mafia, we should play our role as being part of this nation on individual level and have a stance together for once. Media on the other hand is providing us with daily updates on how any government or the current government is performing, we are being aware by our media and through that pasteurization of milk seems to be a decision well drafted after seeing all the ups and downs we are assured by all the details any layman could be provided with. We are not unaware about the current scenario of Pakistan as we only hear about politics and that is the only news around us; there are many issues other than politics and due
to it we are neglecting the basic thing which is food safety. It is an ongoing process which needs full attention in order to have pure milk provided to children of Pakistan. the pace that government is on needs to stay as it is; it can be fast but not slow. It is expected from CM government of Punjab Usman Buzdar and PM Imran Khan to work vigilantly for the betterment of our nation and like other countries are developed we are also in the list of developed countries. Punjab Food authority claims that they will impose a ban on the sale of loose milk in 2022 and reduce the adulteration in milk at least. Lahore has become the model city by PFa to implement the law of pasteurized milk and it is expected that it spreads in all over Punjab and in Pakistan asthe implementation of the law would be helpful for authorities to meet international standards and to curb the sale of adulterated milk.
Thursday, 5 December, 2019
06 WORLD VIEW
Blood and soil in narendra Modi’s india THE PRIME MINISTER’S HINDU-NATIONALIST GOVERNMENT HAS CAST TWO HUNDRED MILLION MUSLIMS AS INTERNAL ENEMIES
n Indian journalist Rana Ayyub and I landed at the Srinagar airport two weeks after Modi’s decree. Even from a moving car, it was clear that the reality in Indian held Kashmir veered starkly from the picture in the mainstream Indian press. Soldiers stood on every street corner. Machine-gun nests guarded intersections, and shops were shuttered on each block. Apart from the military presence, the streets were lifeless. At Khanqah-e-Moula, the city’s magnificent eighteenth-century mosque, Friday prayers were banned. Schools were closed. Cell-phone and Internet service was cut off. The police and soldiers were using small-gauge shotguns—called pellet guns by the locals—and some of the victims had been blinded. At the hospital, we found a scene of barely restrained chaos. Thirty gunshot victims were inside. A smartly dressed man with a closecropped beard stepped into our path and placed his hand on Ayyub’s shoulder. “What are you doing here?” he said. Rai looked at me and quietly said, “Run.” I turned and dashed into the crowd. The bearded man took Ayyub and Rai by the arm and led them away. Muslim-Hindu harmony was central to the vision of India’s founders, Mohandas Gandhi and Jawaharlal nehru, who laid the foundation for a secular state. India’s Muslims protected themselves by forging an alliance with the Congress Party—Gandhi and nehru’s group, which monopolized national politics for fifty years. But the founders’ vision of the secular state was not universally shared. In 1925, K. B. Hedgewar, a physician from central India, founded the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh, an organization dedicated to the idea that India was a Hindu nation, and that Hinduism’s followers were entitled to reign over minorities. During the dispute over Babri Masjid, Ashis nandy, a prominent Indian intellectual, began a series of interviews with R.S.S. members. A trained psychologist, he wanted to study the mentality of the rising Hindu nationalists. One of those he met was narendra Modi, who was then a little-known B.J.P. functionary. nandy interviewed Modi for several hours, and came away shaken. His subject, nandy told me, exhibited all the traits of an authoritarian personality: puritanical rigidity, a constricted emotional life, fear of his own passions, and an enormous ego that protected a gnawing insecurity. During the interview, Modi elaborated a fantastical theory of how India was the target of a global conspiracy, in which every Muslim in the country was likely complicit. “Modi was a fascist in every sense,” nandy said. “I don’t mean this as a term of abuse. It’s a diagnostic category.” To many observers, Modi’s success stemmed from his willingness to play on profound resentments, which for decades had been considered offensive to voice in polite society. Even though India’s Muslims were typically poorer than their fellow-citizens, many Hindus felt that they had been unjustly favored by the central government. In private, Hindus sniped that the Muslims had too many children and that they supported terrorism. The Gandhi-nehru experiment had made Muslims feel unusually secure in India, and partly as a result there has been very little radicalization, outside Kashmir; still, many Hindus considered them a constant threat. “Modi became a hero for all the Hindus of India,” nirjhari Sinha, a scientist in Gujarat who investigated the riots, told me. “That is what people tell me, at parties, at dinners. People gen-
uinely feel that Muslims are terrorists— and it is because of Modi that Muslims are finally under control.” In 2010, in a series of cover stories for Tehelka, Ayyub tied Modi’s closest adviser, Amit Shah, to a sensational crime. The scion of a high-caste family, Shah had trained as a biochemist but excelled as a political tactician. A onetime president of the Gujarat Chess Association, he had twice helped engineer Modi’s election as the top official in Gujarat; afterward, he was made the Minister of State for Home Affairs. Ayyub was investigating a case that had begun five years before, when police in Gujarat announced that they had fatally shot a suspected terrorist dispatched by Pakistan to assassinate Modi. In political and journalistic circles, the announcement inspired skepticism; rumors had been circulating that the police killed criminals and then pretended that they were Muslim assassins, heroically thwarted just before they could get to Modi. Wised-up Indians derided the police claims as “fake encounters,” but, among Gujaratis who were alarmed by the riots, they helped boost Modi’s reputation as a defender of Hindus. It turned out that the alleged assassin, a local extortionist named Sohrabuddin Sheikh, had no history of Islamist militancy. Before long, federal investigators established that he had been murdered by the police. There were witnesses, including Sheikh’s wife and a criminal associate of his. But, a couple of days after the killing, his wife was murdered and her body burned; the associate was killed in police custody a year later. Ayyub didn’t believe that the ultimate responsibility lay with the police. “I never looked at the arrests that were made, the people who shoot,” she told me. “I looked for the kingpins.” One source, a police officer, suggested that Amit Shah had been involved. Ayyub first met the officer at a secluded house in the countryside. “He could see that my hands were shaking,” she told me. “He said, ‘If you’re going to do this story, then you have to stop shaking.’” The next time they met—in a graveyard, at 3 a.m., with Ayyub disguised in a burqa—he gave her a CD, hidden in a bouquet of flowers. It contained six years of Shah’s telephone records, including the times and locations of his calls. Using the records, Ayyub showed that Shah and the three officers suspected of murdering Sheikh’s associate had been in extensive contact, before and after the killing. Her reporting also offered an explanation of Shah’s motive: a police official told her that the murdered criminals “knew something that could have been damning for the minister.” Ayyub was not the first journalist to expose official misconduct in the case, but the evidence around Shah was explosive. Federal agents asked her for a copy of Shah’s phone records, and she obliged. Within weeks, Shah was arrested on charges of murder and extortion; he had allegedly been involved in the same illicit business as Sheikh. (A spokesman for Shah denied his complicity, saying, “Shah was implicated in the said criminal offence purely on political considerations.”) Federal police eventually charged thirtyeight other people, including Gujarat’s top police official, the former Home Minister for the state of Rajasthan, and more than twenty officers suspected of being involved in the murders. The morning of Shah’s arrest, Ayyub awoke to find that her reporting was the top of the news. A popular television anchor read the entirety of one of her pieces on the air. “I was just a twentysix-year-old Muslim girl,” she said. “I felt people would finally see what I can do.” Her stories, along with others, set off a series of official investigations into the Gujarati police, who were suspected of killing more than twenty people in “fake encounters.” But, she thought, even Shah was not the ultimate kingpin. Her source had told her that the police were under intense pressure to stall the investigation and to hide records from
federal investigators—suggesting that someone powerful was trying to squelch the case. The headline of one of her stories was “so why is narendra Modi protecting Amit Shah?” Despite the evidence piling up around Modi, he only grew stronger. Increasingly, he was mentioned as a candidate for national office. In 2007, while running for re-election as Chief Minister, Modi taunted members of the Congress Party to come after him. “Congress people say that Modi is indulging in ‘encounters’—saying that Modi killed Sohrabuddin,” he told a crowd of supporters. “You tell me—what should I do with Sohrabuddin?” he asked. “Kill him!” the crowd roared. “Kill him!” Within a few weeks of Shah’s arrest, Ayyub hit on an idea for a new article: “If I can go after Shah, why not Modi?” She told her editors at Tehelka that she suspected Modi of far graver crimes than previously reported. If she went undercover, she argued, she could insinuate herself into his inner circle and learn the truth. In the United States, it is a cardinal rule of journalism that reporters shouldn’t lie about their identity; undercover operations tend to be confined to the industry’s yellower margins. In India, the practice is more common, if still controversial. In 2000, Tehelka sent a former cricket player, wearing a hidden camera, to expose widespread match-fixing and bribery in the sport. Later that year, two reporters posing as representatives of a fake company offered to sell infrared cameras to the Ministry of Defense. Thirty-six officials agreed to take bribes; the Minister of Defense resigned. Tarun Tejpal, Tehelka’s editor, told me that he authorized stings only when there appeared to be no other way to get the story. In this case, he said, “Modi and Shah were untouchable. The truth would never come out.” He told Ayyub to go forward. As she began reporting, Ayyub created an elaborate disguise, designed to appeal to the vanities of Gujarat’s political establishment. “Indians have a weakness for being recognized in America,” she said. “The idea that they would be famous in the United States—it was irresistible to them.” She became Maithili Tyagi, an Indian-American student at the American Film Institute Conservatory in Los Angeles, visiting India to make a documentary. She invented a story about her family, saying that her father was a professor of Sanskrit and a devotee of Hindu-nationalist ideas. Ayyub, who has distinctive curly hair, straightened it and tucked it into a bun. She rehearsed an American accent, and, for added verisimilitude, hired a French assistant, whom she called Mike. Only her parents knew what she was doing; she stayed in touch on a separate phone. In the fall of 2010, Ayyub rented a tiny room in Ahmedabad. For eight months, she flattered her way into the local élite, claiming that her film would focus on Gujaratis who were prospering under Modi’s tenure. “Modi’s biggest support comes from Gujarati-Americans,” she told me. “I said, I want to meet the most influential people who can tell me the Gujarat story—who will
tell me the secret sauce of what Mr. Modi has done in the past fifteen years.” At first, Ayyub and Mike appeared only at apolitical social events, to get locals used to seeing them around. As she moved in closer, she began wearing hidden cameras and microphones—in her watch, in her kurta, in her phone. (When she bought the minicams, at a Spy Shop in new Delhi, she told the salesman that she was trying to catch an adulterous husband.) Ayyub was welcomed nearly everywhere. She made revealing recordings of senior Gujarati officials, some of whom directly accused Modi and Shah of wrongdoing. Even Modi agreed to see her for a brief chat in his office, where his staff offered her biographies of him to read. Modi showed her copies of Barack Obama’s books. “He said, ‘Maithili, look at this. I want to be like him someday,’” she recalled. She was struck by his canniness. “I thought Modi was either going to be Prime Minister or he was going to jail.” Ayyub took her findings back to her editors. But, after reviewing transcripts, Tejpal decided against publishing a story. The conversations were mostly of officials implicating others—often Modi and Shah. Tejpal told me that he needed people admitting their own crimes. Ayyub was convinced that Tejpal had succumbed to pressure from the B.J.P. “He caved in,” she told me. “I was inside Modi’s and Shah’s inner circle, as close as you could get.” (Tejpal denied this, and other editors spoke in support of him.) By 2012, Modi had become the most recognizable B.J.P. leader in India, and seemed likely to run for Prime Minister. As Modi began his run for Prime Minister, in the fall of 2013, he sold himself not as a crusading nationalist but as a master manager, the visionary who had presided over an economic boom in Gujarat. His campaign’s slogan was “The good days are coming.” A close look at the data showed that Gujarat’s economy had grown no faster under his administration than under previous ones—the accelerated growth was “a fantastically crafted fiction,” according to Prasad, the former editor. Even so, many of India’s largest businesses flooded his campaign with contributions. Modi was helped by an overwhelming public perception that the Congress Party, which had been in power for most of the past half century, had grown arrogant and corrupt. By contrast, Modi and his team were disciplined, focussed, and responsive. “The Gandhis would keep chief ministers, who had travelled across the country to see them, waiting for days— they didn’t care,” an Indian political commentator who has met the Gandhis as well as Modi told me. “With Modi’s people, you got right in.” While the Congress leaders often behaved as if they were entitled to rule, the B.J.P.’s leaders presented themselves as ascetic, committed, and incorruptible. The B.J.P. won a plurality of the popular vote, placing Modi at the head of a governing coalition. As Prime Minister, he surprised many Indians by challenging people to confront problems that had gone unaddressed. Modi’s effort to transform his image succeeded in the West, as well. In the United States, newspaper columnists welcomed his emphasis on markets and efficiency. In addition, Modi called on a vast network of Indian-Americans, who
cheered his success at putting India on the world stage. The Obama Administration quietly dropped the visa ban. When Modi met Obama, not long after taking office, the two visited the memorial to Martin Luther King, Jr., a man Modi claimed to admire. During his stay, Modi had a dinner meeting with Obama, but he presented White House chefs with a dilemma: he was fasting for navaratri, a Hindu festival. At the meeting, he consumed only water. not long after Modi took power, the Sohrabuddin Sheikh case, in which his old friend Amit Shah was implicated, ground to a halt. By 2014, Shah had essentially stopped showing up for hearings. When the judge ordered Shah to appear, the case was taken away from him, in defiance of the Supreme Court. The new judge, Brijgopal Loya, also complained about Shah’s failure to show up in court. He told his family and friends that he was under “great pressure” to dismiss the case, and that the chief justice of the Bombay High Court had offered him sixteen million dollars to scuttle it. (The chief justice could not be reached for comment.) Loya died not long after, in mysterious circumstances. The coroner’s report said that he had suffered a heart attack, but, according to The Caravan, a leading Indian news magazine, details in the report appeared to have been falsified. The arrangements for Loya’s body to be returned to his family were made not by government officials but by a member of the R.S.S.; it arrived spattered in blood. Loya’s family asked for an official investigation into his death but has not received one. Shah’s case was given to a third judge, M. B. Gosavi, who after less than a month dismissed all charges, saying that he found “no sufficient ground to proceed.” Subsequent efforts to hold anyone accountable for Sohrabuddin Sheikh’s death came to nothing. As the trial of the remaining defendants approached, ninety-two witnesses turned against the prosecution, with some saying they feared for their lives; the defendants were acquitted. Rajnish Rai, the officer tasked with investigating Shah, was transferred off the case. When he applied for early retirement, he was suspended. By the time the charges were dropped, Modi had installed Shah as president of the B.J.P. and chairman of the governing coalition—effectively making him the country’s second most powerful man. In 2016, after four years of trying to find a publisher for her book, Ayyub decided to publish it herself. To pay for it, she sold the gold jewelry that her mother had been saving for her wedding. “I wasn’t getting married anytime soon anyway,” she told me, laughing. She found a printer willing to reproduce the manuscript without reading it first, and cut a deal with a book distributor to share any profits. She persuaded an artist friend to design an appropriately ominous cover. Ayyub was protected by the fact that, as an English-language book, it would be read only by India’s élite, too small a group to concern the B.J.P. That May, the book went on sale on Amazon and in bookstores around the country. She called it “Gujarat Files: Anatomy of a Cover Up.” “Gujarat Files” relates the highlights of the discussions Ayyub had with senior officials as she tried to figure out what happened during Modi’s and Shah’s time presiding over the state. It is not a polished work; it reads like a pamphlet for political insiders, rushed into publication by someone with no time to check punctuation or spell out abbreviations or delve into the historical background of the cases discussed. “I didn’t have the resources to think about all that,” Ayyub told me. “I just wanted to get the story out.” The virtue of the book is that it feels like being present at a cocktail party of Hindu nationalists, speaking frankly about long-suppressed secrets. “Here is the thing,” Ayyub said. “Everybody has heard the truth—but you can’t be sure. With my book, you can hear it from the horse’s mouth.” To be continued... Dexter Filkins is a staff writer at The new Yorker and the author of “The Forever War,” which won a National Book Critics Circle Award.
Thursday, 5 December, 2019
ChiNa warNs us Of a ‘priCe’ fOr uighur bill
HINA warned Wednesday that a “price must be paid” after the US House of Representatives overwhelmingly passed legislation seeking sanctions against senior Chinese officials over the crackdown on mainly Muslim Uighurs in Xinjiang. The legislation adds to tensions between the two superpowers just as they are locked in negotiations to finalise a “phase one” deal to resolve their protracted trade war.
US President Donald Trump had already angered Beijing after he signed legislation supporting pro-democracy protesters in Hong Kong, prompting China earlier this week to impose sanctions on US-based NGOs and suspend future visits by US warships to the semi-autonomous territory. Hours after the Uighur Act of 2019 passed the House late Tuesday, the Chinese foreign ministry said the bill should not become law and issued an ominous warning: “For all wrong actions and words… the proper price must be paid.” The legislation condemns Beijing’s
“gross human rights violations” linked to the crackdown in the northwestern region of Xinjiang, where upwards of one million Uighurs and other mostly Muslim minorities are believed to be held in reeducation camps. The measure, which passed 407 to 1, is a stronger version of the bill that cleared the Senate in September. The texts must be reconciled into one bill for Trump’s signature. The latest House measure condemns the arbitrary mass detention of Uighurs and calls for closure of the re-education camps where, according to rights groups and US lawmakers, they have been held and abused. The bill notably urges Trump to slap sanctions on Chinese officials behind the Uighur policy, including Chen Quanguo, the Communist Party chief for Xinjiang. “Today the human dignity and human rights of the Uighur community are under threat from Beijing’s barbarous actions, which are an outrage to the collective conscience of the world,” House Speaker Nancy Pelosi told her colleagues shortly before the vote. Congress “is taking a critical step to counter Beijing’s horrific human rights abuses against Uighurs,” she said. Pelosi lashed out at Chinese authorities for orchestrating a crackdown that includes pervasive mass state surveillance, solitary confinement, beatings, forced sterilisation “and other forms of torture.” When asked if the bill could impact trade talks, Hua did not directly answer the question.
North Korea’s Kim opens huge mountain development PYONGYANG AGENCIES
North Korean leader Kim Jong Un has opened a flagship construction project close to Mount Paektu, a symbol of the Korean nation and officially the birthplace of his father and predecessor, state media reported Tuesday. The ceremony was held in snowy scenes before thousands of soldiers and civilians, and portrayed as a demonstration of the resilience of the North, which is subject to international sanctions imposed over its nuclear weapons and ballistic missile programmes. It comes with time running out on Pyongyang’s demand for the US to offer it fresh concessions by the end of the year, and ahead of Kim’s New Year speech on January 1, a key political set-piece in the isolated country. Kim donned a black leather trench coat and gloves for the opening, and — surrounded by fur-hatted officials — cut a red ribbon in front of a statue of his father Kim Jong II. Winter already has North Korea’s far north firmly in its grip, and icicles hung from buildings, Korean Central Television (KCTV) footage showed — the largely empty streets covered in snow. Banners proclaimed: “Long live the great leader of the force of our party and country, comrade Kim Jong Un!” Kim had “worked heart and soul to turn
Samjiyon County, the sacred place of the revolution, into the utopia town under socialism”, the official KCNA news agency said. The Korean people were, it said, “advancing along the straight road chosen by themselves without any vacillation despite the worst trials”. Nuclear negotiations with the United States have been deadlocked since the Hanoi summit broke up in February, and Pyongyang has issued a series of increasingly assertive comments in recent weeks as its time limit approaches.
In a separate report Tuesday, KCNA quoted vice foreign minister Ri Thae Song saying: “What gift the US receives for Christmas depends entirely on the US’ decision.” Pyongyang has poured huge resources into the rebuilding of Samjiyon, the closest town to Mount Paektu, a dormant volcano that straddles the border with China. Kim is closely associated with the scheme and has visited the area several times, reportedly riding a white horse to the mountain’s summit in October.
FOREIGN NEWS 07
Indian border policeman guns down 5 colleagues, himself CHATTISGARH: A policeman from India’s armed border force opened fire on his colleagues on Wednesday, killing five of them before turning the gun on himself, police said. Constable Musudul Rehman of the Indo-Tibetan Border Police (IPBP) opened fire on his comrades in Chhattisgarh, a restive central state long wracked by a left-wing insurgency. “He later shot himself after shooting seven personnel,” according to a statement issued by the ITBP. The two injured were being airlifted to state capital Raipur. Mineral-rich Chhattisgarh is among India’s most impoverished states, where Maoist rebels have been fighting for decades for greater rights over land and resources. Tens of thousands of soldiers, rebels and others have been killed there since the 1960s. The government has deployed tens of thousands of police and special commandos in a bid to eradicate the groups. There have been over 300 suicides in the Indian military and a string of socalled “fratricide” incidents since 2016, prompting government initiatives including counsellors, helplines and even yoga. Separately the military said that four soldiers were killed in occupied Kashmir on Tuesday, three of them in an avalanche and a fourth who died in a blizzard. Two others died on Saturday in an avalanche some 4,500 meters up on the Siachen glacier, known as the world’s highest militarised zone. AGENCIES
TikTok sued over alleged data transfer SACRAMENTO: A university student in California has filed a classaction lawsuit against video app TikTok, which she accuses of harvesting large amounts of user data and storing it in China. “TikTok clandestinely has vacuumed up and transferred to servers in China vast quantities of private and personally-identifiable user data,” the court filing said. Misty Hong, a student in Palo Alto, California, filed the suit against the Chinese-based app in California federal court last week, according to a report in The Daily Beast on Monday. The video platform, which is hugely popular with teenagers around the world, was launched by Chinese company ByteDance in September 2017. “TikTok also has surreptitiously taken user content, such as draft videos never intended for publication, without user knowledge or consent,” the lawsuit alleges. “In short, TikTok’s light-hearted fun comes at a heavy cost,” it said. The suit marks the latest legal battle for the app. In early November, the US government opened a national security investigation into TikTok, according to the New York Times, potentially looking into whether the app was sending data to China. Hong alleges that the app retrieved her data without permission – including videos that she had created but not shared online – and transferred them to servers run by companies that cooperate with the Chinese government. She filed the suit on behalf of the approximately 110 million US residents who have downloaded the app. TikTok did not immediately reply to AFP’s request for a response. In November, it said it could not comment on a possible US investigation but emphasised that the respect of US users and regulators was its highest priority. TikTok has distanced itself from Chinese authorities, maintaining that its servers are located outside of the country and that its data is therefore not subject to Chinese law. In November, the app hit 1.5 billion downloads worldwide, outperforming Instagram. AGENCIES
India’s drug regulator asks states to halt online sales NEW DEHLI AGENCIES
India’s drugs regulator has asked all states to enforce a court directive prohibiting online medicine sales, a senior government official said on Tuesday, raising industry concerns it could disrupt some online businesses. India is yet to finalise regulations for online drug sales, or e-pharmacies, but the growth of several online sellers such as Medlife, Netmeds, Temasek-backed PharmEasy and Sequoia Capital-backed 1mg has threatened traditional drug store businesses. The Delhi High Court in December last year said the government must ensure online sales are prohibited for the time being, as it heard a petition from a doctor who alleged unregulated online sales could lead to abuse of medicines.
K Bangarurajan, a senior official at the Central Drugs Standard Control Organisation (CDSCO), said the federal agency had asked states earlier this year to comply with the court’s order, and a reminder had now been issued to all authorities. “State drug controllers are the regulating authority, they have to implement this…and if anyone is dealing [in online sales] they need to take action,” Bangarurajan told Reuters. The CDSCO’s directive was sent on Nov 28 to all states, according to a copy seen by Reuters. It was not immediately clear what subsequent action states would take. Sreenidhi Srinivasan, a senior associate at law firm Ikigai Law, said the Delhi court order had raised concerns in the industry and any bans by state drug controllers could hurt online sellers. Trader groups have protested for
years against e-pharmacies, saying they challenge their businesses and could
allow medicines to be abused by being sold without proper verification. They
also allege e-pharmacies make it easier to use one prescription to buy medicines multiple times. Steep online discounts have also hit offline businesses, which according to industry estimates recorded $18.4 billion in retail sales in 2018-19. Sales growth has averaged only 8.2 per cent a year since 2015-2016, when sales grew by 12.3%. “Online retailers have been offering discounts more than our margins,” said Yash Aggarwal, legal head of South Chemists and Distributors Association in New Delhi. Some are not worried, however. Pradeep Dadha, CEO and founder of online e-pharmacy Netmeds, said his firm was complying with all Indian laws and regulations and business was continuing as usual. “All our partner pharmacies also have the required licences,” Dadha said.
Thursday, 5 December, 2019
08 COMMENT What makes NAB act in haste?
Why not wait till accused are finally pronounced guilty
Hen the lahore High Court accepted former Punjab Chief Minister Shehbaz Sharif’s request for bail in the Ashiana-i-Iqbal Housing Scheme and Ramzan Sugar Mills cases, nAb went to the Supreme Court against the judgment. the questions raised by the apex court however led the nAb counsel to withdraw the appeal. the comments made by the SC are unambiguous. It was unable to understand how the former Chief Minister was guilty of misusing authority, or committing or indulging in corruption, when he himself sent the matter to a committee and later to the Punjab Anti-Corruption establishment when the allegations of procedural irregularities came to his notice. the court was unable to grasp what crime the former Chief Minister had committed when he asked for proposals for public-private partnership, especially when such proposals were subsequently placed before the board of directors of the Punjab land development Company (PldC), as the entire project could not take off with the walking away of the successful bidder. the CJP observed that the former Punjab CM appears to be a good guy in the entire case. the court also regretted that the project, which never happened on ground, had kept the courts quite busy. How can any subordinate court hearing Shehbaz Sharif’s appeal against the Ashiana Housing scheme judgement ignore the Supreme Court’s remarks? And if Mian Shehbaz is finally exonerated in the case, this would give rise to a number of vital questions. the nAb law might have been defective but shouldn’t the nAb chief, who is expected to know the basic requirements vis-à-vis dispensation of justice, have used his knowledge of law not to file a case of the type. Who will compensate for Sharif’s weeks-long custody? Who will be held responsible for the media trial that brought a bad name to the former Punjab CM? the nAb claims it has “reasonable grounds for believing” that Messrs Shehbaz, Salman and Hamza were involved in “offences of corruption and corrupt practice.” on tuesday it issued orders to freeze 23 properties owned by the three and other family members. the action by nAb taken before courts finally pronounce them guilty is likely to be called an act of vindictiveness.
He long-anticipated indictment of Israeli Prime Minister benjamin netanyahu has finally come to pass. For three years, netanyahu spared no effort to scuttle three criminal cases against him, but failed. these charges and their implications have now become rather clear. they have occupied netanyahu’s thinking as to how to save himself and maintain his position as Prime Minister. they have impacted Israel’s policies, in particular toward the Palestinians, and without a doubt the charges have adversely impacted netanyahu’s efforts to form a government following the last two elections. In the first case, Case 1000, netanyahu is charged with receiving gifts from Hollywood film producer Arnon Milchan in return for political favours. In the second case, Case 2000, netanyahu is accused of striking a deal with Yedioth Ahronoth publisher Arnon Mozes to provide netanyahu with favourable coverage in return for politically targeting a rival newspaper. In Case 4000, the third charge, netanyahu took steps to benefit his friend Shaul elovitch, who controlled bezeq, in return for favourable coverage on bezeq’s news site Walla. the first two cases charged netanyahu with fraud and breach of trust; the third case added charges of bribery as well. netanyahu made a supreme effort all along to have these charges dismissed, claiming in the first case that it is acceptable to receive gifts from friends. In Case 2000, he claimed that he and Mozes were basically fooling each other and had no intention of following through, and argued in Case 4000 that asking for favourable coverage is not bribery. In April of this year, netanyahu continued his effort by initially trying to reinstate a 2005 immunity law which gave the Knesset House Committee the power to reject the Attorney General’s request to rescind immunity of any particular MK. In May, netanyahu planned to push through a new law that would allow the Knesset to protect his immunity. this would have allowed the Knesset to ignore any High Court ruling on administrative matters, including potentially revoking netanyahu’s immunity. And in July, realising that he couldn’t pass such laws, netanyahu claimed, “no one is
The noose tightens changing the law, it doesn’t need to be changed, and I won’t need it at all… it isn’t necessary at all because there has never been anything and there won’t be anything.” the three indictments were a menacing dark cloud that hovered over netanyahu’s head, and have had a significant impact on his political decisions. He sought to demonstrate that the charges were largely frivolous and that he is the indispensable leader who will safeguard Israel’s national security. but the greater impact of these charges on his behaviour was more related to the Palestinians. He needed to show toughness and an uncompromising position– not only to cement his right-ofcentre base, but to demonstrate that he is the only leader who can pursue policies consistent with Israel’s presumed national aspirations to control all of the ‘land of Israel, including the West bank. other than continuing to expand and legalise settlements, he announced more than once that following the formation of a new government, Israel will annex significant chunks of the West bank, to continue to please his base. Perhaps the most important impact of the charges was his inability to form a government twice this year, in April and September. because as a sitting prime minister he would not be indicted, he insisted that under no circumstances would he relinquish that position, knowing that an indictment against him will force him to face trial. this was given an even greater urgency after the second election, when he and Kahol lavan leader benny Gantz attempted to form a unity government. For the same reason, netanyahu insisted that in a rotating prime ministership which both sides agreed upon, he would serve as prime minister for the first two years. Since Gantz refused, especially given Kahol lavan’s larger mandate and netanyahu’s pending indictment, netanyahu is opting to go for a third election within a year, hoping
against hope that he will emerge as the winner with a greater mandate to form a new government. What is sad about all this is that netanyahu has all along put his self-interest above the party and the nation. Having served the longest as prime minister in Israel’s history, netanyahu’s insatiable hunger for power and desperate need to escape the indictment was first and foremost in his mind. For a man who professes to love his country and to have dedicated all his life in the service of the state, he failed to grasp that in the final analysis, Israel’s survival has not and will never depend on a single individual. Had he indeed been concerned with the welfare and the security of Israel, he would have agreed to serve in a rotating unity government with Gantz on Kahol lavan’s terms, and spared the country the pain of going through a third election. His failure, and the subsequent failure of Gantz himself to form a government, may well push Israel now toward its third election in a single year. In an open letter to netanyahu in october, I wrote “It’s time for you to go. there is nothing you can do that others cannot do just as good if not better. Resign your post; turn to the Attorney General to drop the charges against you. the nation will forgive you for your good intentions and some deeds… unless you want to end up in jail just like your predecessor, spare the nation the humiliation and pain.” Sadly, he did not heed such advice, regardless of its source, and now he may very well end up in jail and stigmatise Israel for having been led by corrupt leaders who seem to have always put their personal self-interest above that of the nation. Dr Alon Ben-Meir is a professor of international relations at the Centre for Global Affairs at NYU. He teaches courses on international negotiation and Middle Eastern studies. email@example.com
Indo-Pacific’s geopolitical chessboard
Karachi in chaos Clueless police
MuhaMMad asif Baloch
HouGH Karachi seems to have been brought out of the orgy of target killing and extortion that was the apparent hallmark of the dominance of the MQM, its peace seems once more under threat, as shown by the dua Mangi case that has convulsed the city since it occurred last Saturday. Her kidnapping shows that the city is not well policed, for the best explanation that the police has come up with is the crime had been committed by a criminal gang. It is indeed a strange gang that has not made any ransom demand from the victim’s family. this knowledge has not been followed by any recovery of the victim from the gang’s clutches. there has also been some rather misplaced debate on whether Ms Mangi somehow brought it upon herself by going on a walk in defence with a male friend, Haris Fattah, who was shot by the attackers and is now fighting for his life in a city hospital. that seems irrelevant, for the fact is that two crimes, and heinous ones at that, the shooting, which will be accounted attempted murder, and the kidnapping, have been committed, and which cannot be justified by any means, no matter what Ms Mangi and Mr Fattah might have been doing. As a matter of fact, such arguments reflect a Victorian prudery which is growing more and more antiquated, and which is increasingly going out of fashion. However, these sort of perverse arguments rear their ugly head every time a crime involves a woman. be that as it may, the case has so far proved beyond the capacity of the Karachi police to resolve, with the traditional method of taking every possible suspect into custody and beating them till one confesses, having failed to work. Protests are taking place, of the families and friends of both Ms Mangi and Mr Fattah, and though the police have recovered CCtV footage, that has not helped them move the case towards a resolution. Ms Mangi’s recovery must be the main priority, but after that some attention must be paid to the City’s policing. Policing is the responsibility of the provincial government, which has been formed by the PPP. However, the PtI has legislators there, apart from being supported by the MQM. Policing must not become a blame game, or there will be more such heinous crimes.
Dedicated to the legacy of the late Hameed Nizami
Arif Nizami Editor Aziz-ud-Din Ahmad
Lahore – Ph: 042-36300938, 042-36375965
Netanyahu personifies the corrupting force of power
ndoubtedly, history proves that the changing shadow of global politics and power transition from one state or region to another state or region leads to geopolitical clashes of interests between emerging and existing powers. It is said that the 19th century was marked as the british century because of its trade and naval power domination. the same is the case of the 20th century which was known as the American because of its economic and military superiority. but now there is a turning point of the power spectrum and geopolitics which is transforming from America to Asia. However, in recent global geopolitical debate the term ‘Asian Century’ is frequently being used because of the growing Asian countries such as China, India, and Japan, due to their robust economies and strong military build-ups. the Indo-Pacific consists of the Indian ocean Region and the Western Pacific. beginning from eastern Africa and passing through east and South Asia all the way to South China Sea and defined by connectivity and conflicts between regional and global powers, today, the region encapsulates the world’s economic centre of gravity and maritime strategy involving it is shaping geopolitical outcomes in the 21st century. the uS historian and naval strategist Alfred thayer Mahan argued that, “Whoever controls the Indian ocean dominates Asia. this ocean is the key to the seven seas in the 21st century, the destiny of the world will be decided in these waters.” due to the rising importance of the Indo-Pacific region in the political, economic and security spheres, the region has become the epicentre of geopolitics. In addition, Asian countries are with their economic developments and trade partnerships playing a promiKarachi – Ph: 021-35381208-9
As power shifts, the region becomes more important nent role in the world’s geopolitical and economic landscape. Recently, China is the world’s fastest-growing economy and its one belt, one Road initiative is a mega project in the contemporary world consisting of six major economic corridors which connect more than 65 countries from different continents. Probably, the Indo-Pacific’s geopolitical chessboard comprises of numerous regional and global powers, having various conflicting and contradictory interests and ambitions in the region. Whereas, the growing influence of China in the region economically and militarily might be the source of contest between involved parties. China’s rise presents a power transition which is a major threat to uSA, India and Japan. However, rising China is unacceptable for these parties. these parties perceived China’s bRI project as a major regional as well as global threat, and distinguish it as an encirclement policy known as the String of Pearls towards the region. but Chinese officials never directly claimed that the purpose of the project is other than economic development and regional connectivity. Probably, geostrategic competition exists in the region either economically or militarily. undoubtedly, China’s building of commercial ports and military bases in the region is not just based on economic purposes but rather shows strategic ambitions. Whereas, Sri-lanka and djibouti are the prime examples of Chinese debt trap diplomacy, called neo-colonialism. owing more than $1 billion in debt to China, Sri lanka surrendered Hambantota port to Chinese companies owned by its government on a 99-year lease. the same is the case with djibouti located in the Horn of Africa, where China built its first overseas military base. on the other hand, Gwadar
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port in Pakistan, Chittagong in bangladesh, and Kyaukpyu in Myanmar, are where China is also willing to use these commercial ports in the near future for military and strategic purposes to check India and the uSA in the region. these dilemmas in the Indo-Pacific further intensify the regional strategic competition between contending parties. In addition, India believes that she is the sole south Asian power and owns the Indian ocean as a natural part of India and massive Chinese in India’s neighbouring countries such as Pakistan, bangladesh, and Sri lanka further enhance India’s sense of fear and of a threat to its national security and interests. China has the strategic ambition of encircling India. there is a chain of fear among South Asian countries from each other India fears China, Pakistan feels threatened by its arch-rival India, and China perceived a threat from India and its ally the uSA. China may or may not have any long-lasting goal in the Indian ocean Region, but she is interested in maintaining the power balance there because of its economic, political, strategic and diplomatic significance. China’s growing military presence in the Indian ocean should not come as a surprise. China is following in the traditional path of other rising powers by expanding its military operations to match its interests abroad. therefore, the emerging of Chinese influence alarmed India into the strategy of thwarting Chinese intentions, with India perceiving it as an expansionist and imperialist encircling strategic policy. now, Indian policymakers are advancing their naval power under the Indian Maritime doctrine and modernising into a bluewater navy to reach other ports and bases. India’s ‘look east’ policy is a countermove to establish economic and defence ties with Chi-
nese neighbours and south-east Asian nations such as Japan, taiwan, Philippines, Indonesia, Malaysia, and South Korea to counter China. Similarly, in the Arabian Sea and Indian ocean, it is also building the Chabahar port of Iran and duqm port of oman for economic and military purposes. now India is going to respond to China’s encirclement policy through its containment policy. Furthermore, the Quadrilateral Security dialogue (QSd), which is a security and strategic dialogue between India, Australia, Japan, and the uSA was formally originated in 2007, by the leaders of these countries. Strategic, military, security and the diplomatic arrangements were at the centre of the discussion and viewed as a response to growing Chinese power in the region. the strengthening Chinese economic and military power is a major cause of regional alignment in the Indo-Pacific region. Chinese aggressive assertiveness in the South China Sea and Indian ocean region is perceived by Quad members as a threat to the regional international system. the uSA has been one of the leading players in the competition. due to the expanding geopolitical and geo-economic influence of china, the uSA is trying to reshape its Indo-Pacific policies to contain and counter China’s manoeuvring in the region. the uSA is responding to China by strengthening its own internal power as well as building regional security and military alliances to contain China. these geostrategic and geopolitical developments in the region will leads contending parties in a greater geopolitical rivalry which may be caused direct confrontations. Muhammad Asif Baloch can be reached at Muahammadasif94@gmail.com
Thursday, 5 December, 2019
COMMENT 09 Editor’s mail
Send your letters to: Letters to Editor, Pakistan today, 4-Shaarey Fatima Jinnah, Lahore, Pakistan. E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org Letters should be addressed to Pakistan today exclusively
Re-establishing dairy sector
The neo-doctrine of necessity There are still challenges to be overcome
o the sheer disbelief of many, Pakistan is a casualty of an unconstitutional practice that, over the years, has solidified into a convention followed reflexively: to extend the service tenure of a serving Chief of Army Staff (CoAS). Fortuitously, a few days ago, in the Supreme Court of Pakistan, it transpired that the high offices, both the authority to grant extension and the authority to receive extension in his tenure of service, were oblivious to the requisite of law. When books of law are shelved for being too hallowed to read, illegal actions fill the gap. An extension in the tenure of service was unconstitutional, to say the least. by implication, the Pakistan Army was commanded occasionally by the persons who were heading the institution illegally, whether the illegality was self-sought or granted with due pleasure. If the Supreme Court had not taken cognisance of the matter, Pakistan would have another CoAS with an illegal extension. In principle, the word “extension” in service supersedes the option of “reappointment” to any post, since the word “extension” means an uninterrupted continuation of the service, compared to the word “reappointment” that means an interruption in the continuation of the service. In Pakistan’s history, as no precedent of reappointment of the CoAS is present, no convention of the same has been set. on november 26, the Supreme Court took up the case with the professed intention of taking a triple action: looking into the law, ascertaining the validity of the procedure of granting extension, and understanding the grounds for according extension in the tenure of service. under the operative maxim, “let justice be done though the heavens fall,” the hearing began with the avowal that the law was disrespectful to any inequality and that no person of any authority could take precedence over an institution. that is, the welfare of an institution was supreme to the interest of a person. unfortunately, the resolve fizzled out soon denigrating the fact that no person
could be indispensable. Consequently, on november 28, the last day in the service of CoAS Gen Qamar Javed bajwa, the Supreme Court permitted him to continue with his service for another six months. In the meantime, Parliament would carry out the necessary legislation to legalise the extension. this was the first instance when the Supreme Court granted extension to the CoAS in the tenure of his service. With that, the Supreme Court forgot the triple pledge, which it had made right at the outset and which had grabbed the attention of every Pakistani making him glued to the tV screen. Quietism was disturbed. the high-profile case suffered an anticlimax when the Supreme Court did not bother afterwards to comprehend the grounds for according the extension. the ruckus of the first day of hearing ended in the genial atmosphere of the third day. the Supreme Court submitted to the authority of its redoubtable counterpart. nevertheless, the next person in the queue became the victim of injustice meted out by the Supreme Court. by implication, the Supreme Court declared a junior dispensable at the cost of a senior. the beneficiary also did not consider that the legitimate right of someone else to command the army was being infringed: the recipient should have preferred quittance from the obligation in order to let the next in queue serve the nation. the retirement of General bajwa and the handing-over of the charge to whosoever would have been his successor was the matter internal to the Army, but the Supreme Court intervened to halt this routine ceremony, and hence obliter-
ated the option of equal opportunities for all those who qualify for the position. under the rubric of judicial restraint, the Supreme Court created an artificial construct of law to smoothen the transition of General bajwa, as if the Court had been convinced of the grounds of extension– though the grounds remained both unpresented and unheard. this was how the neo-doctrine of necessity began. though the Supreme Court threw an interim arrangement, the incumbent government is relishing in the confidence, rather over-optimism, that it can extend the tenure of the CoAS beyond the interim six months by securing a vote of a simple majority in the Parliament to amend the given Army Rules and Regulations. If it were so simple! there are three challenges to surmount. First, the Army Rules and Regulations are protected under the Constitution, Article 243 of which empowers the President to appoint a serving general to the highest seat of the army, the CoAS, on the advice of the Prime Minister. Afterward, the same rules and regulations empower the CoAS to run the institution of the Army. It means that any changes in the rules and regulations to head the army have to be reflected in or sprout from Article 243. Second, Article 243 makes all services chiefs equal before the law. It is not possible that the chief of one service be permitted to have an extended period of service tenure or enjoy the facility of reappointment, leaving out the chiefs of other services unbenefited. by implication, if the Army Rules and Regulations are tempered with the facility of extension or reappointment, similar rules and regulations governing other services (navy and Air Force) cannot be left unattended. the law of the land has to deal with all services justly with prejudice to none. third, any matter related to appointment, whether dealt with remotely (for instance, through extension or reappointment), cannot escape the ambit of Article 243. Currently, the President is not only the appointing authority, but he is also authorised to determine the appointee’s salary and allowances. In case of extension and reappointment, it has to be decided who would be the authority to extend the tenure of service and who would reappoint an officer to the post of the CoAS with what salary and allowances. either Article 243 has to be amended or a new article has to be incorporated into the Constitution to lay the matter to rest permanently. In short, in an attempt to forfend against a crisis, the Supreme Court has instigated another crisis, which not only infused uncertainty into the high office of the Army but it also nudged the incumbent government to test its wits.
In short, in an attempt to forfend against a crisis, the Supreme Court has instigated another crisis, which not only infused uncertainty into the high office of the Army but it also nudged the incumbent government to test its wits
Anwar Ali can be email@example.com
PAKIStAn enjoys the status of being the third largest milk producer in the world. However, being the biggest producer is one thing and utilising it to maximise gains from it is quite another. the ‘gawala’ system is still so dominant that 95% of milk sold in Pakistan is through them. the gawala system has shattered the trust of people so much so that the public now doesn’t want to buy from them. the reason behind this is the adulteration of milk using water in the best-case scenarios and chemicals at worst. the milk sold through the formal dairy sector of Pakistan comprises only 5% which is an incredibly low proportion of the milk produced and consumed. the milk for the packaged milk industry is gathered from those local farmers who can provide higher volumes of milk. this ignores small farmers who cannot meet the minimum milk volume to sell to these packaged milk companies. In turkey and other developed countries, the governments have formed cooperatives where farmers can earn in proportion to what they contribute. these cooperatives not only include small farmers but also help control milk adulteration to a great extent. A big percentage of milk is wasted every year in Pakistan either because it is not stored in optimal atmospheric conditions or, as discovered by the regulatory authorities, because of adulteration. the Punjab Food Authority (PFA) has played an active role in curbing the menace of milk adulteration to this end, and as a consequence, hundreds and thousands of litres of milk that have been declared unsafe for consumption are dumped every year. Recently, the permission has been granted by Chief Minister of Punjab Mr usman buzdar for the sale of pasteurised milk, which will begin from township, lahore as a pilot project. Pasteurisation is a process in which the milk is heated at a certain temperature for a specific period of time to kill all the harmful bacteria in it. It is the need of hour for government intervention in the provision of safe milk. every day, in cities across the country, children are reported to be suffering from malnourishment, stunted growth, wasting and other harmful diseases which can be combatted in part through the consumption of healthy, safe milk. ten years ago, turkey formalised its dairy sector by implementing a minimum pasteurisation law. today, turkey is amongst the ten biggest milk producers in the world, and not only it fulfils its domestic needs, but also contributes to the economy by exporting a huge quantity of milk. If Pakistan, as the 3rd largest milk producer with a 95% informal dairy sector, increases the share of its formal dairy sector, not only it will this ensure the provision of safe milk to the masses, but also contribute to economic growth and development through taxes and investments. Growth of any industry is directly proportional to the economy and the same applies for Pakistan’s dairy sector. A lack of awareness in this regard is one of the major reasons why the packaged milk industry has failed to grow at the pace it should have. If minimum pasteurisation laws are completely implemented, these will not only help the formal dairy sector scale, but will also enable small farmers who to date are forced to sell their milk in local markets, thus subject to adulteration. Formalisation of industry has always brought innovation, growth, and effective and efficient solutions to any problems faced. For Pakistan’s dairy sector to achieve its fullest potential, the public and private sectors will have to join forces to see qualitative and quantitative results. MUHAMMAD AMir Lahore
HIV in Pakistan HuMAn Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV) is a hazardous virus which destroys the immune system and cause AIdS. noticeably, this virus is caused by using needleless syringe and sexual contact. the common symptoms of this virus are sudden weight loss, jaundice, persistent cough, flu, night sweats and pneumonia which are commonly called fatal diseases. However, Pakistan has a large number of HIV patients included, men, women and children. Approximately, Pakistan has 160,000 adults living with HIV among whom 48,000 are girls of 15 to 25 years who have been involved in sexual contacts directly and indirectly. Furthermore, the country has an estimated population of 52,400 of transgender who have an HIV prevalence rate of 5.5 per cent. not only this, according to a report, 900 children in Pakistan are currently suffering from AIdS who are sexually harassed which shows how our society is ignorant. In addition, recently,1,200 masses from Sindh and 45,000 people from KPK have been affected by HIV. the virus captured over all the country, but the concerned authorities are just watching the show without taking any action. even, the hospitals have no space for infected patients. by the way, I just want to ask to government of Pakistan that Can’t we have such a scientist who can invent an appropriate antidote against this dangerous virus? ABiDA DiLJAN Turbat
Climate change tHe changes which are caused by global warming is what we called climate change. It is clear to everyone that climate change has become a great threat for this world. the unusual melting of glaciers due to global warming has increased the sea level which cause storm in order to destroy some beautiful countries like Maldives. the general causes of global warming by which climate change occurs are burning fossil fuels, using shabby vehicles, burning plastic bags, greenhouse gases and particularly depletion of ozone layer. However, climate change has become an international issue that has compelled many countries to discuss it in General Assembly of uno. the world hope that uno and its member countries will find out a suitable solution for this issue so that our beautiful planet should be protected. NABiLA BASHir Turbat
Thursday, 5 December, 2019
10 FOREIGN NEWS
NatO uNity ON the liNe as feudiNg leaders meet BRUSSELS
ATO leaders will attempt to make a convincing show of unity on Wednesday when they meet to conclude a summit already overshadowed by bitter rows about the future of the alliance. Last year, the Western allies’ get-together was derailed by US President Donald Trump’s demand for greater European defence spending, but 2019’s provocateur was France’s Emmanuel Macron. The French president has called for a renewed strategic dialogue with Moscow and demanded that Turkey explain itself over its assault — backed by Syrian rebels Paris sees as extremists — on Kurdish forces and its purchase of the Russian S-400 air defence system. The leaders met in various groups in London on Tuesday before having dinner with Queen Elizabeth II in Buckingham Palace, but Macron refused to withdraw his charge that NATO strategy is “brain dead” and Trump continued to insist some capitals were “delinquent” in paying their way. The row set up a tense last day of what NATO secretary-general Jens
UK PM denies dodging Trump in pre-election NATO trip LONDON: British Prime Minister Boris Johnson denied on Wednesday he was avoiding being pictured with Donald Trump ahead of a UK election next week, as footage emerged of other leaders mocking the US president. Johnson met Trump away from the cameras on Tuesday before a two-day NATO summit, avoiding the media fanfare that normally accompanies such talks. He also failed to publicly greet Trump and his wife Melania on the doorstep of Downing Street before a reception with other NATO leaders. Johnson’s team are wary of what Trump might say during his two-day visit, with Britain set to go to the polls on December 12. Johnson’s Conservatives are leading opinion polls but the rival Labour party has sought to whip up public opinion against Trump, who is deeply unpopular in Britain. In a press conference on Tuesday, the president promised to “stay out” of the election campaign and most of his remarks were about divisions within NATO. But he still managed to endorse Johnson as “very capable” and intervene in a row over US interests in Britain’s state-run National Health Service (NHS) after Brexit. AGENCIES
UN launches $29bn emergency funding appeal NEW YORK: The UN launched a humanitarian appeal for nearly $29 billion on Wednesday as climate change and increasingly protracted conflicts put tens of millions of people in urgent need of aid. The world body’s Global Humanitarian Overview estimated that 168 million people worldwide will need some form of emergency assistance in 2020, including food, shelter and healthcare. That figure marks a “record in the modern era,” UN emergency relief coordinator Mark Lowcock told reporters, clarifying that he was referring to the period since World War II. Needs continue to rise in part because “conflicts are becoming more protracted and intense,” Lowcock said. “Combatants display total disregard for humanitarian law,” with the result that civilians caught up in conflict are increasingly likely to be displaced or traumatised psychologically, he said, adding that the number of attacks on schools and health facilities continues to rise. In addition, climate change has unleashed more extreme weather events, notably drought and flooding, which trigger humanitarian emergencies, he said. AGENCIES
Stoltenberg had hoped would be the 70thanniversary show of unity for the “most successful military alliance in history”, and a demonstration that the West can stand up to challenges from Russia and China. The leaders are to gather at a golf resort hotel outside Watford, north of London, for a three-hour working session followed by a statement, and British host Prime Minister Boris Johnson will make an appeal for unity. “Seventy years on, we are rock solid in our commitment to NATO and to the giant shield of solidarity that now protects 29 countries and nearly a billion people,” Johnson was to say, according to his office. “If NATO has a motto, it is: ‘One for all, and all for one’.” In recent weeks Macron has tried to shake up the agenda by demanding a review of alliance strategy, but Trump — who arrived boasting that he had forced members to boost defence spending — hit back hard. “I think that’s very insulting,” Trump said of Macron’s assertion last month that NATO is experiencing “brain death”, branding it a “very, very nasty statement”. “Nobody needs NATO more than France,” he warned. “It’s a very dangerous statement for them to make.”
Trump later softened his tone at a joint appearance with Macron, but the French leader stood by his approach — and his choice of language — and turned his guns on Turkey, accusing Ankara of working with extremists. “The common enemy today are the terrorist groups, as we mentioned, and I’m sorry to say that we don’t have the same definition of terrorism around the table,” Macron said. He noted that Turkish forces have attacked the Kurdish militia that backed the allies against the Islamic State in Syria, and he accused Ankara of working
with “ISIS proxies”. Macron and Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan later came face to face at four-way talks with Germany’s Chancellor Angela Merkel and Britain’s Johnson. Merkel said she was “relatively optimistic” after the meeting, but Macron warned that “not all clarifications were obtained and not all ambiguities were resolved”. Erdogan has threatened to hold up NATO efforts to bolster the protection of the Baltic republics against Russia unless the allies brand the Kurdish militias who defeated the IS group in Syria as “terrorists”.
NOT PAID UP IN FULL: Trump defended Stoltenberg’s record of pushing allies for increased defence spending, but he reiterated his own long-standing complaints. “When I came in, I was angry at NATO, and now I’ve raised $130 billion,” Trump said, referring to the sum Stoltenberg says Canada and European members since 2016 will have added to defence budgets by next year. “And yet you still have many delinquents — you know I call them delinquent when they’re not paid up in full,” Trump said. Only nine of NATO’s 29 members have reached the target agreed at its 2014 summit to spend two per cent of their GDP on defence before 2024. Trump cited in particular Germany as falling short, spending only 1.2 per cent of GDP. WHERE NEXT?: The substance of the summit is thin, with only one three-hour session planned where leaders are expected to sign off on a set of decisions already taken by NATO foreign and defence ministers. These include defining space as a domain of conflict — alongside land, sea, air and cyberspace — as well as acknowledging for the first time the “challenges” posed by China’s rise. “We have now recognised that the rise of China has security implications for all allies,” Stoltenberg said. Germany has suggested an expert panel could look at how NATO can be adapted to address political questions more effectively and the leaders are expected to endorse this.
US Senator Kamala Harris bows out of 2020 presidential race WASHINGTON AGENCIES
US Senator Kamala Harris ended her 2020 presidential bid on Tuesday, abandoning a campaign that began with promise for a rising Democratic Party star but faltered as she struggled to raise money and make a compelling case for her candidacy. Harris, 55, would have been the first woman and second black US president if elected next November. But her wavering views on how to solve the nation’s healthcare problems and whether to embrace her past as a prosecutor were among the missteps that dragged down the campaign after its glitzy launch in January. Her candidacy ultimately failed to resonate with African-American voters in the important early voting states of
South Carolina and Nevada, and she polled poorly even in her home state of California. Harris’ abrupt departure further narrows the field of White House contenders two months before voting begins in Iowa, the first nominating contest. It underscores the difficulties of competing in a contest that once numbered more than two dozen Democratic candidates seeking the party’s nod to run against Republican President Donald Trump. “My campaign for president simply doesn’t have the financial resources we need to continue,” Harris said in an email to supporters on Tuesday. “I’m not a billionaire,” she added in a swipe at wealthy businessmen Tom Steyer and Michael Bloomberg, who are funding their own long-shot campaigns. “And as the campaign has gone on, it’s
become harder and harder to raise the money we need to compete.” Harris’ withdrawal marked a sharp comedown for a candidate once portrayed as “the female Obama,” a nod to the first black US president who remains hugely popular with Democratic voters. Harris, a first-term senator for California and the state’s former attorney general, was considered a top-tier contender when she launched her quest for the presidency with a rally in Oakland that drew 20,000 people. Her political advisers, including one of California’s most powerful consulting firms as well as veterans from Hillary Clinton’s 2016 presidential campaign, quickly arranged national television appearances, and her questioning of Trump administration appointees in US Senate hearings cemented her image as smart and tough.
Harris posted her strongest showing in the Reuters/Ipsos public opinion poll after the first Democratic debate in June, during which she briefly shifted the conversation to race relations with a sharp critique of former vice president Joe Biden’s record on racial integration in the 1970s. But Harris could not maintain the momentum and was eclipsed by rivals in fundraising. Her support among Democrats and independents nationally slipped from 10 per cent in a June 28-July 2 poll to 2% in the latest Reuters/Ipsos poll that ran Nov. 20-22, falling from the third most popular candidate to sixth in that span. She finished September with $9 million in cash, less than half of the nearly $26 million rival Massachusetts Senator Elizabeth Warren had on hand, according to campaign finance disclosures.
Natural gas drives record CO2 emissions in 2019 CANBERRA AGENCIES
Global carbon emissions boosted by soaring natural gas use are set to hit record levels in 2019 despite a decline in coal consumption and a string of countries declaring a climate emergency, researchers said Wednesday. In its annual analysis of fossil fuel trends, the Global Carbon Project said CO2 emissions were on course to rise 0.6 per cent this year — slower than previous years but still a world away from what is needed to keep global warming in check. In three peer-reviewed studies, authors attributed the rise to “robust growth” in natural gas and oil, which offset significant falls in coal use in the United States and Europe. “We see clearly that global changes come from fluctuations in coal use,” said Corrine Le Quere, from the University of East Anglia, an author on the Carbon Budget report. “In contrast, the use of oil and particularly natural gas is going up unabated. Natural gas is now the biggest contributor to the growth in emissions.” Atmospheric CO2 levels, which have been climbing exponentially in re-
cent decades, are expected to hit an average of 410 parts per million this year, Le Quere said. That’s the highest level in at least 800,000 years. The report will make for further uncomfortable reading for delegates gathered at UN climate talks in Madrid, with the warnings from the world’s top climate scientists still ringing in their ears. Last week the UN said global emissions needed to fall 7.6 per cent each
year, every year, to 2030 to stand any chance of limiting temperature rises to 1.5oC (2.6 Fahrenheit). With just 1oC of warming since the industrial era so far, 2019 saw a string of deadly superstorms, drought, wildfires and flooding, made more intense by climate change. The UN said Wednesday that the 2010s was almost certain to be the hottest decade on record and as many as 22 million people could be displaced by extreme weather this year.
The authors pointed out 2019’s rise in emissions was slower than each of the two previous years. Yet with energy demand showing no sign of peaking even with the rapid growth of low carbon technology such as wind and solar power, emissions in 2019 are still set to be 4 per cent higher than in 2015, the year nations agreed to limit temperature rises in the Paris climate accord.While emissions levels can vary annually depending on economic growth and even weather trends, the Carbon Budget report shows how far nations still need to travel to drag down carbon pollution. “Current policies are clearly not enough to reverse trends in global emissions. The urgency of action has not sunk in yet,” said Le Quere. She highlighted anticipated emissions falls of 1.7 per cent in the US and Europe as the power sector continues its switch away from coal. The most polluting fossil fuel saw its usage drop by as much as 10 per cent in the two regions this year, the report said. But such savings were offset globally by the likes of India and China, the biggest overall emitter, and specifically by an increase in energy from natural gas.
Thursday, 5 December, 2019
‘Facilitation oF microFinance sector to help document economy’
HAFEEZ SHAIKH SAYS EFFORTS ARE UNDERWAY TO OVERCOME BUDGET DEFICIT SO THAT EXPENDITURE ON DEVELOPMENT PROJECTS CAN BE ENHANCED ISLAMABAD
CAPTION: United Bank Limited (UBL) Head of International Zia Ijaz presents a memento to Chinese diplomat Sha Zukang and Counsel General Long Dingbin. PR
DvISer to Prime Minister on Finance and revenue Dr Abdul Hafeez Shaikh on Wednesday stressed the need to facilitate the microfinance sector, as the sector has been providing solutions to several challenges faced by Pakistan, particularly poverty. He was addressing the first day of Annual Microfinance Conference organised by Pakistan Microfinance Network. The adviser noted that there are approximately seven million clients of microfinance and
that this number is increasing. He said the savings rate in Pakistan is around 15pc which is half when compared with the regional savings rate of 30pc. “We have low saving rates in the country, but microfinance can be helpful in addressing this issue,” the adviser added. He said because of its wide outreach, microfinance can help the government document the economy. “The process to document the economy is underway while the tax policy is being amended. efforts are also being made to overcome budget deficit so that spending on developmental sectors can be improved,” he said. The adviser informed the audience about several
measures taken by the government to achieve macroeconomic stability. “Positive results have now started to become apparent in the form of job creation and improvement in economic activities.” repeating his claim that the present government had inherited record debts, he said that the conditions were deplorable, and the current account deficit was huge when the PTI took over. Over the past 15 months, he added, the conditions have improved considerably while the country has started witnessing an economic turnaround. He said that the measures taken by the government have been acclaimed internationally, adding that
MARKET DAILY Oppo on Wednesday announced that it will become one of the first companies to launch its flagship 5G smartphone in the first quarter of 2020. PR
Stocks rally as index surpasses 40,000 mark KSE-100 RECOVERS LOSSES FROM PREVIOUS SESSION, ENDS 481 POINTS HIGHER KARACHI STAFF REPORT
KARACHI: Hyundai Nishat Motor Pvt Ltd starts booking of Hyundai Porter H-100 Pickup. PR
The Pakistan Stock exchange (PSX) reversed its losses from the previous session and closed with decent on Monday. The indices remained positive throughout the session, helping the benchmark KSe-100 Index surpass the 40,000-mark. According to analysts, the index found renewed strength after the Consumer Price Inflation (CPI) for the month of November clocked in at 12.67pc, marginally above market consensus at 12.44pc. Gaining 517.82 points, the KSe-100 Index stormed past the 40,000-mark to record its intraday high at 40,306.55. The index settled higher by 481.79 points at 40,270.52. The KMI-30 Index added 679.13 points to close at 63,277.22, while the KSe All Share Index accumulated 315.80 points, ending the session at 28,434.53. The overall trading volumes contracted from 448.88 million in the previous session to
393.08 million. Unity Foods Limited (UNITY +1.40pc), Lotte Chemical Pakistan Limited (LOTCHeM +2.81pc) and K-electric Limited (KeL -1.49pc) topped the volume chart, exchanging 26.85 million, 17.67 million and 15.98 million shares, respectively. Sectors that helped the KSe-100 Index accumulate gains included banking (+123.79 points), cement (+68.77 points) and oil and gas marketing (+53.44 points). Among the companies, Pakistan State Oil Company Limited (PSO +40.74 points), Lucky Cement Limited (LUCK +33.57 points), MCB Bank Limited (MCB +31.83 points) and United Bank Limited (UBL +31.47 points) remained the top point contributors to the index. The refinery sector turned out to be the top gainer with the addition of 5.45pc in its total market capitalization. Byco Petroleum Pakistan Limited (BYCO +5.81pc), Attock refinery Limited (ATrL +5.00pc), National refinery Limited (NrL +4.99pc) and Pakistan refinery Limited (PrL +4.97pc) registered decent gains. Meanwhile, in a notification to the exchange, PSO has announced that it has acquired additional ‘Class B shares’ in Pakistan refinery Limited (PrL +4.97pc). Following the acquisition, the company’s shareholding has increased from 52.68pc to 56.25pc.
Asad Umar quits NA finance committee
KARACHI: Engro Foundation on Wednesday announced the recipients of ‘I Am The Change’ (IATC) Impact Awards for 2019. PR
Asad Umar on Wednesday stepped down as the chairman of the National Assembly Standing Committee on Finance. The development took place during a session of the committee in parliament and in the wake of Asad Umar’s new appointment. Asad Umar had recently rejoined the federal cabinet as the minister for planning and development. National Assembly Speaker Asad Qaiser accepted the resignation. Umar, being a federal minister, will no longer be part of the committee. The committee members unanimously voted in PTI MNA Faizullah Kamoka as the new chairman. His name had been recommended by PPP information secretary Dr Nafisa Shah and endorsed by PTI MNA Sardar Nasrullah Khan Dareshak. “As the chairman of this committee, I will take all its members forward together,” said Kamoka, as he thanked the committee for their vote of confidence. The committee members paid tribute to Umar for having served the committee dutifully. A resolution to pay tribute to him was also passed by the committee. BUSINESS DESK
the confidence of the international community on the improving economic prospects in Pakistan is growing, which is apparent by the increase in foreign direct investment (FDI). The adviser cited the International Monetary Fund (IMF) report, which lauded Pakistan for meeting most of its targets. He also reminded the audience about Bloomberg’s report which revealed that Pakistan’s stocks had outperformed the world’s leading stock markets. “Moody’s has upgraded Pakistan’s credit rating outlook from negative to ‘stable’ while FDI has increased by 236pc,” the adviser noted. “Tax revenues have improved by 16pc in five months while the non-tax revenues surged by more than a 100pc during the same time period.” He said that expenditures on non-essential items have been reduced while the reserves of the State Bank of Pakistan have been stabilised. “The economic condition has improved owing to an increase in the inflow of dollars and 35pc reduction in the current account deficit.” He said the Islamic Development Bank (IDB) added $3 billion in its programme for Pakistan while the IMF has approved the release of the second loan instalment of $500 million to Pakistan.
investment in prize bonds surges 192 per cent: sBp Investment into premium prize bonds of rs40,000 denomination increased sharply by 192pc, the State Bank of Pakistan (SBP) said on Wednesday. The SBP’s statistics showed that investment into registered or premium prize bonds surged to rs17 billion in October 2019 compared with rs5.8 billion in the corresponding month a year earlier. Premium prize bonds are being issued only against computerised national identity cards with valid bank accounts. The government has announced a biannual profit of 1.96pc to make the instrument attractive and the payout is directly transferred to the bondholders. Around rs232 billion was converted into either premium bonds or transferred into saving accounts or other bank accounts following the government’s initiative to discontinue prize bonds of rs40,000 denomination to bring the money into the documented economy. BUSINESS DESK
FBr releases refunds worth rs5.5bn under automated system Federal Board of revenue (FBr) Chairman Shabbar Zaidi said on Wednesday that the revenue board has released refunds worth rs5.5 billion under its fully automated system. Taking to Twitter, the FBr chairman said the refunds have been issued under fully automated, impersonal, harassment and corruption-free system. earlier on December 2, FBr Chairman Shabbar Zaidi had reiterated that every person owning a car above 1,000cc and a house measuring 500 square yards or above is required to file tax returns. “FBr reiterates that every person owning a car above 1000 cc and a house measuring 500 sq. yards or above is mandatorily required to file a return of income irrespective of having any taxable income during the year,” he had tweeted. BUSINESS DESK
Cement sector posts 10.6pc growth in November ISLAMABAD STAFF REPORT
The domestic cement despatches increased 5.11pc to 3.538 million tonnes, while exports surged 43.53pc to 0.808 million tonnes in November 2019. The overall cement despatches grew by 10.61pc to 4.346 million tonnes in Nov 2019, when compared with the same last year. The cement mills based in the northern part of the country despatched 3.241 million tonnes while southern mills despatched 1.105 million tonnes clinker and cement.
Domestic consumption in the north was 2.976 million tonnes while exports were 0.264 million tonnes. Similarly, domestic cement consumption in the south was 0.562 million tonnes while exports stood at 0.544 million tonnes in November. Meanwhile, domestic despatches in the first five months (July-Nov) of the current fiscal year (FY20) increased 2.91pc YoY to 16.854 million tonnes, while exports surged 21.46pc to 3.608 million tonnes. The overall cement despatches grew by 5.76pc to 20.462 million tonnes in 5MFY20. In the northern side, total domestic consumption in the
first five months of FY20 was recorded at 14.432 million tonnes, which was 11.32pc higher than the domestic consumption in the same period of FY19. However, the region exported 1.214 million tonnes of cement during 5MFY20, which was 2.89pc lower than last year. The southern region depicted a contrasting performance as it despatched 2.422 million tonnes of cement for domestic consumption in 5MFY20, which was 29.02pc less than the cement consumed by the region during the same period last fiscal. The exports during the period under review, however, increased significantly
by 39.16pc to 2.394 million tonnes. According to the All Pakistan Cement Manufacturer Association (APCMA) spokesman, the cement industry was sitting on a huge underutilised capacity, as only 46.88 million tonnes of cement was despatched last year, against the total installed capacity of 59.65 million tonnes. “This year, the total despatches may reach 49.11 million tonnes. But again, 10.54 million tonnes of capacity will remain unutilised,” he added. The APCMA official urged the government to enhance cement consumption by replacing kiln bricks with concrete blocks. “This will
largely resolve the smog issue in central Punjab where brick kilns have to be closed in winter to control smog.” He said brick kilns eroded the quality of soil and that a shift to cemented blocks was in line with developed economies. “The government should start work on the announced housing projects, as such projects will not only have a positive impact on the uptake of construction materials but will also create jobs for skilled and unskilled labour,” he stated. He requested the government to support the industry by minimising duties and taxes on cement in order to increase consumption.
Thursday, 5 December, 2019
cci to decide ‘uniForm standard’ For consumer goods on 10th ISLAMABAD
S the provinces have voiced against the role of a federal government body in setting the standards for consumer goods in the country, the Council of Common Interest (CCI) is finally going to decide about the role of centre and provinces in maintaining the quality and standard of goods. According to sources, the CCI, which is going to meet on December 10 in Is-
trump to sign usJapan trade deal proclamation next week WASHINGTON: US Trade representative robert Lighthizer on Wednesday applauded Japan’s legislative approval of limited US trade deals and said that President Donald Trump was expected to sign an implementing proclamation next week. The deal, which improves access to Japan for US farm products such as beef and pork while reducing some US tariffs on Japanese industrial products, does not require approval by the US Congress, but Democrats have complained about a lack of information about the deal from the White House. “I commend Japan’s quick action to approve these important trade agreements between our two nations, which are the world’s first and third largest economies,” Lighthizer said after its approval by Japan’s Diet. “We expect the president to sign the implementing proclamation for the United States next week.” Lighthizer said the deal will benefit US farmers, ranchers and digital services providers. The trade representative said the two countries were preparing for the USJapan Trade Agreement and the US-Japan Digital Trade Agreement to go into effect on Jan 1, 2020. The agreement does not address autos trade, the biggest source of the $67 billion US goods trade deficit with Japan. US Commerce Secretary Wilbur ross on Tuesday told reuters that Trump has not ruled out imposing tariffs on auto imports, including those from Japan, despite the expiration of a review period last month. The trade representative said the United States and Japan “will begin consultations early next year in order to enter into further negotiations on a broader trade agreement.” AGENCIES
lamabad, will decide about the longstanding issue which could not be resolved at various forums, as provinces, as well as the federal government, do not want to lose their mandate to inspect, monitor and implement the standards/quality for consumer goods. The chief ministers of four provinces, as well as Azad Kashmir and Gilgit Baltistan, would be attending the CCI meeting. According to insiders, both Sindh and Punjab governments are reluctant to accept the role of the Pakistan Standard and Quality Control Authority (PSQCA),
which is an attached department of the Ministry of Science and Technology mandated with making standards and inspecting quality rules for consumer goods. “Punjab Food Authority is not ready to allow PSQCA make standards for food items, saying that the provincial authority performs all duties in this regard efficiently,” an official at the Ministry of Science and Technology said. The PSQCA, which is worried about losing its power/mandate to inspect the quality of over 100 selected items, had suggested the CCI to at least allow the au-
thority make standards for consumer items. “The provinces may be allowed to enforce/implement the PSQCA standards in their jurisdiction,” officials informed Pakistan Today. “But Punjab is reluctant to accept this proposal as it also wants to set standards for food items.” According to sources, PSQCA in the past had failed to ensure the manufacturing, import and supply of quality food items owing to the “incapability and corruption of its officials”. Due to the authority’s lacklustre performance, the provincial food authorities
FOOD AUTHORITIES OF PUNJAB, SINDH NOT WILLING TO ACCEPT CENTRAL AUTHORITY’S ROLE IN DETERMINING THE STANDARD FOR GOODS have practically taken control of the mandate being exercised by PSQCA. resultantly, sources said, the manufacturers of consumer/food items, including multinational companies, have companied over the inspection/monitoring and licensing by both PSQCA and provincial authorities. Since the process of inspection, certification and licensing involves fee, money and bribe, the central and provincial authorities are reluctant to give up their mandate and power, sources added.
PM to lay foundation stone for Jalalpur Canal on 13th ISLAMABAD AHMAD AHMADANI
Prime Minister Imran Khan is likely to lay the foundation stone for the 115.7km-long Jalalpur Canal on December 13th, sources informed Pakistan Today, adding that the canal would help irrigate the areas of Pind Dadan Khan as well as parts of Khushab. As per the sources, PM Khan is expected to lay the foundation stone for the long-awaited Jalalpur Canal this month, while the Punjab Irrigation Department, along with other con-
cerned departments of the Punjab government, has been making necessary arrangements to hold a ceremony in this regard. Apart from PM Khan, Science and Technology Minister Chaudhry Fawad Hussain and other senior leaders of Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) were also expected to address a public gathering on the occasion. The issue of Jalalpur Irrigation Project (JIP) dates to 1898. During the construction of rasul Barrage in 18981901, the right divide wall was built for the future construction of Jalalpur Canal. even during the reconstruction
of rasul Barrage in 1967 under Indus Water Treaty, provision for the construction of Jalalpur Canal was made. Similarly, during the construction of the motorway, the provision for crossing on Jalalpur Canal was also made near Lillah Interchange (towards Lahore). The feasibility study of this canal was conducted in 1992-93 while it was updated in 2010. A fresh feasibility study was then conducted from Mar 2014 to Nov 2015, whereas the topographic survey was carried in 2016. Sources said the total cost of the project is approximately rs32 billion, of which the Asian Development Bank
(ADB) would provide 88pc while remaining 12pc would be paid by the Punjab government. Punjab irrigation and agriculture departments are the implementing agencies of this project. The land acquisition process is underway. On February 7, 2018, the executive Committee of the National economic Council (eCNeC) gad approved rs32,721.46 million as the cost of JIP. The repayment period of loan was set at 15 years with an interest rate of LIBOr+0.60pc. The project would be completed in five years, including a one-year defect liability period.
AdAsia Lahore witnesses low turnout on day two LAHORE ABDULLAH NIAZI
The second day of AdAsia Lahore took place at the Alhamra Arts Council, where marketeers and ad gurus from different parts of the country congregated after a break of three long decades. The conference, which began on Tuesday with a conversation between marketing guru Sir Martin Stuart Sorrell and veteran journalist richard Quest, will conclude on its third and final day on Thursday (today). The event focused on the future of the advertising world, as mediums of marketing and advertising are rapidly changing in the ever-advancing, ever-evolving technological world. AdAsia is Asia’s largest and most prestigious ad congress held every two years under the auspices of the Asian Federation of Advertising Associations (AFAA). Its theme is ‘Celebrasian: Celebration of Advertising and Creativity in Asia’. Punjab Chief Minister Usman Buzdar opened the event, while Prime Minister Imran Khan could not attend despite having committed to delivering an opening address earlier. Some 750 delegates around the globe were expected to attend the event. The speakers included
William Dalrymple (historian and author), randi Zuckerberg (Founder & CeO, Zuckerberg Media), Lord William Hague (former secretary of state UK), Tay Guan Hin (Creative Change Catalyst, APAC Global Advisory), richard Quest (chief business correspondent CNN), Tasuharu Sasaki (executive Creative Director, Dentsu Network), Atifa Silk (Brand Director, Campaign — Asia), Musharaf Hai (Managing Director, L’Oreal), Javed Jabbar (media expert), Seema Kamil (President and CeO, UBL), Taher Khan (Founder and Chairman, Interflow Communications), Ali rez (regional CD, Middle east & Pakistan, BBDO Worldwide), Shazia Syed (CeO, Unilever Pakistan Foods Limited) and Dr Zeelaf Munir (MD & CeO, eBM). However, the attendance remained thin for the on the second day, with the halls at Alhamra almost half full. While the thin crowds could usually be explained away by the fact that AdAsia Lahore is not meant to be a festival and is targeted towards marketers, marketing students, professionals and buffs that were expected to turn did not really manage to come through. One of the main highlights from the day was by Wille eerola, the Counsel General of Finland to Pakistan, and the Chairman of the Finland-Pakistan Business Council. “My love affair with Pakistan started with the ad agency
business. That’s why it’s so wonderful to see AdAsia back in the city,” he said, commenting on the long drawn out hiatus that AdAsia has had from the country. The general perception among delegates and other attendees was that the event was a milestone in helping improve Pakistan’s image. Many of the attending foreign delegates had come expecting much more dire straits in Pakistan in all possible ways, and were surprised to see the condition of Lahore and the organisation of the event. There were, however, some raised eyebrows over an award presented to Khawar Masood Butt, the Chairman of english Biscuit Manufacturers (eBM). Butt was given the prestigious ‘Leadership Award’ by the Asian Federation of Advertising Associations (AFAA). This accolade was presented in recognition of his tremendous contributions to the marketing and advertising industry of Pakistan as well as his vision and good governance resulting in eBM’s successful growth over the years. The CeO & MD of eBM – Dr Zeelaf Munir received this award on behalf of Khawar Butt. While Butt has had a rich history in the advertising world, his company, eBM, is also the main sponsor of AdAsia Lahore, having spent approximately rs30 million on the low attendance event. Traditionally, lead sponsors are not expected to take part in the selection process for awards.
Economists present sustainable growth framework at SDPI conference GOVERNMENT URGED TO REDUCE INDIRECT TAXES, PRIORITISE EXTERNAL DEBT AND FORMULATE EXPORT-ORIENTED POLICIES ISLAMABAD SYEDA MASOOMA
The second day of the three-day International Sustainable Development Conference, organised by the Sustainable Development Policy Institute, saw some statistical, practical, and policy-oriented suggestions being presented for the improvement of Pakistan’s economy. In the keynote address for the session titled “Pakistan economy: Stabilisation with a Human Face”, former finance minister Dr Hafeez A Pasha presented a fivepronged strategy to bring Pakistan out of its vicious cycle of economic deterioration. He started his address by pointing out the findings of the
International Monetary Fund (IMF) regarding Pakistan’s economy, the policy framework being seen in today’s time from the authorities, as well as underreporting of the actual intensity of the poverty and economic issues by organizations like Pakistan Bureau of Statistics (PBS). He said in order to bring improvement to the current deplorable state of the economy, the tax to GDP needs to go up from 11 to 17pc. “Our public debt is exceeding at an alarmingly fast pace even though the law dictates that it should not be more than 60pc. However, the real determinant of the economy will be external debt.” He said from $106 billion in June 2019, the external debt of Pakistan is expected to reach $135
billion by the end of June 2020, which means the ratio of external debt to GDP will go from around 30-35pc to 40-45pc. “I don’t know how these figures come up and with all respect to the finance ministry, one might have had difficulty in signing up for a programme that after such stringent corrective measures still increases your debt by such high percentage,” he said. “even after paying so much for these measures, we will still end up with 40-45pc poverty.” He said, “The key taxable products are undertaxed and under collected and at the same time we tax smaller things, utility items like shampoos etc. while the likes of property taxes remain undertaxed and under collected. He accentuated that Pakistan has to go for a fast-tracked privatization programme. “The government keeps talking about it but doesn’t come around to actually doing something about it. And for God’s sake focus on food prices. PBS reported 7pc increase in
tomato prices when it had actually increased by 230pc. We have to have a policy of stabilizing food prices,” he said. Showing frustration at the state of affairs, Dr Pasha passionately remarked, “economize on the size of the federal government. 42 departments. More than 200 added bodies. After 18th amendment we do not need that.’’ He said that the current determinants of Pakistan’s market hints that we will go up to 42pc poverty by the end of this year, but if the suggested measures are implemented, it can be reversed down to 39pc. Summing up his suggestions, he said, “reduce indirect taxing. Discount rate should be reduced by at least 3pc. external debt has to be prioritized. And Food prices need to be managed.” In his address, World Bank Trade economist Dr Gonzalo varela focused on global integration and how it can be instrumental in bringing about economic improvement for Pakistan. “Sus-
tainable growth is perhaps the most pro-poor policy we can have”. He said that global integration in Pakistan is going to reduce poverty, and there are multiple estimates to prove that. “If the combined efforts of global integration are accounted for, approximately 5.6 million people can be brought out of poverty. If Pakistan wants to exit the bust and boom cycle that it is in, you ultimately need pro-trade growth. Pakistan’s growth in exports and attracting FDI has been much lower than the region that has led it to lose out on the process of global integration,” the WB economist noted. He said that the trading ecosystem and policy ecosystem in Pakistan is extremely anti-export oriented. “The import tariffs are much higher than those of the region. This is a hurdle to export because it is implicitly a tax on exports. You might say that there are exemptions available and exporters can use them, but we can
see that such exemptions and the system of these exemptions are extremely complicated and only the big exporters can benefit from it. The smaller exporters suffer.” He also said that the bigger the difference between the tariff on imports and tariffs for protection of local industry, the more intense the negative impact on exports. “To explain why global integration is not taking place in Pakistan, it can be said that for many years rupee is appreciating. The current depreciation is expected to resolve the issue to some extent, but it will take some time,” he said. “A way forward for long term growth is embracing global integration. reduce trade costs, help firms access new markets, promote new exporters, improve investment climate, and work on attracting FDI in a sustainable manner. You will also need investment policy frameworks for that.” The conference is organised by Sustainable Development Policy Institute and will continue till Thursday.
Tête-à-tête with Ahmer JavedThe Founder of Bachaa Party
SABOOR ALY- ACTRESS ON THE VERGE OF SUPER STARDOM!
Ahmer Javed is a Business graduate of University of Toronto. A sports enthusiast, he’s also an adrenaline junkie who loves to go bungee jumping, sky diving and has an advanced certification in Scuba Diving. Moreover, Ahmer has 5 years of retail experience in Canada at Fortune 500 companies such as Target and Home Depot. We had a chat with Ahmer about his new venture- Bachaa Party and his fun and quirky life. This is what he had to share.
How did you come up with the idea of Bachaa Party? I feel like it was a necessity. Kids in our country deserve a place where they can have fun while shopping. And mothers needed a place where they can find everything under one roof. I remember, when we were kids we were forced to go shopping with our mothers. At Bachaa Party, it’s the other way round, kids are forcing their parents to take them to Bachaa Party.
How has the journey been so far? It has been extremely rewarding to say the least. Its so overwhelming to see the reactions of our followers on social media. One of our followers commented on our “NOW OPeN IN LAHORe” post as “It’s a dream come true”. When you see such feedback you are like WOW we are actually making real impact in people’s lives.
What do you feel are the necessary skills required to run your own business? My recipe to success includes 4 ingredients ; Luck, Passion, Hard work and Talent. Its very important to understand the difference between a want-repreneur and an entrepreneur. The difference is that you keep working towards your goal with consistency no matter what setbacks you face.
What is the most gratifying part of your job? Definitely, being able to make an impact in the lives of our customers and employees.
What advice would you give to someone who was just starting out on their entrepreneurial journey? Consistency. Its By Rohama Riaz very clichéd but extremely true. Believe in your business and consisWhere do you see Bachaa Party in the tently strive for better results. next five years? What’s someWe see Bachaa Party spreading thing your smiles and happiness all over the counbrain tries to try. We want to become a household make you do name, a destination for mothers and chiland you have to dren by continuing to provide the same value will yourself not for money that we have been for the last 3 years. to do it? In this age of social media and What do you feel Bachaa Party has that smart phones, its really easy to get its competitors don’t? Bachaa Party is an experience for distracted. I find it really hard to the entire family not just a shopping avoid distractions and get work done destination. Like I said, Bachaa Party in one go. has made shopping fun for kids. This is What movie can something none of our competitors are you watch over doing; giving importance to kids that they deserve. and over without ever getting What do you think you’d be doing if tired of? not Bachaa Party? How to train I have worked at 2 of the biggest reyour dragon, defitail chains in Canada for about 4 years before I started Bachaa Party. If I didn’t nitely! take the risk of leaving everything behind What’s the most and start my own business I would have epic way you’ve probably been in the same 9-5 routine that I so eagerly negotiated a wanted to get out of. good deal? Over a How do you deal with bad days at work match of darts. or when things don’t go your way? One of my Chinese Its really important to have a hobby, to be passionate about something other suppliers was not reducing the price than work. For me, that’s tennis. When and we were at a stand still. I saw a in the tennis court, I am able to let go of dart board in his office. We placed a everything that happened and prepare for the bet on whoever wins will get his way. Luckily I was the winner. challenges of the next day.
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By Rohama Riaz
He vibrant Saboor Aly has risen to fame in a very short period of time. Garnering love and appreciation for her performance from fans, she has established herself through her versatility and talent as an actor on screen. The aspiring, young actress has various hit plays to her credit such as Rang Laaga, Mubarak Hu Beti Hui Hy, Meeras, Visaal, and the recently concluded Bhool. Currently, Saboor is starring as a lead in two different dramas; Gul o Gulzar and Naqab Zun and both the plays are raking in amazing feedback. Saboor is known for choosing unconventional characters which keep her among the most buzzed young actresses of Pakistan. Her recent roles are also very unique and poles apart from one another, yet she is tackling them all with sheer brilliance. In Naqab Zun, which is a heartwrenching story of sexual abuse and the life of a rape survivor in our society; Saboor essays the main protagonist Dua. A girl who is raped on her wedding day by her brother-in-law, who she considers her brother and guardian. Saboor depicts the sensitive and complex role with such ease and convenience that the audience can’t help but feel for her. She has fit into the skin of her character flawlessly, making the viewers feel the hardships and trauma, a sexual assault survivor has to face within the fam-
ily, friends, and society at large. In her other play “Gul o Gulzar”, the actress plays the antagonist; a cunning and materialistic Gul, who envies her best friend Gulzar and ruins her entire world. Gul is rebellious and a narcissist who is infatuated by glamour. She loves herself above everything and can go to any extent to achieve her goals. The audience is loving Saboor’s flawless acting as the malicious Gul. Her on-point dialogue delivery, her perfect facial expressions, and her immaculate acting make the audience hate Gul to the core, and that’s what describes Saboor’s success as a good and versatile actor. Saboor also stood out with her performance in the recently concluded drama Bhool, where she played a timid and indecisive Ayesha. A girl who was raised by a single mother, and was surrounded by the negativity her mother had to face from her family for being a divorcee. Saboor outdid her performance as Ayesha and translated the emotions of an abandoned child very well on screen. With her amazing performances and her versatility as an actor, Saboor has won a lot of hearts. After witnessing her brilliant performances, it wouldn’t be wrong to say that Saboor is indeed a star in the making. The bona fide star is here to stay and will reach the sky of fame with her constant hard work and dedication.
New 'Planet of the Apes' Movie Coming From Disney Fox
Josh Brolin 'Crazy Burns' Pucker Hole In Bizarre Tanning Trend
Panipat: Malaika Arora gives her nod to Arjun Kapoor’s bald look in Panipat
A new Planet of the Apes movie is in development from the Disney-owned Fox Studios which will have Wes Ball, known for the Maze Runner movies, on board as director. The flick is said to be in the early stages of development, so it is not known if it will continue where Matt Reeves left off from War for the Planet of the Apes or if it will be some sort of reboot or remake. Matt Reeves is now directing The Batman for Warner Bros., which has also cast Andy Serkis as Alfred who played Caesar, with Serkis also directing Venom 2 for Sony. Disney acquired the rights to the Planet of the Apes franchise when they purchased Fox Studios. While at Fox, the previous three Planet of the Apes movies released generated $1.68 billion at the box office. Mark Wahlberg also starred in the Tim Burton 2001 remake, and there were five films involved with the 1968 original. Wes Ball's Maze Runner flicks also brought in near $949 billion worldwide.
Josh Brolin may need the help of the Infinity Gauntlet and the Time Stone to recover from this one as the Thanos-actor tried "perineum sunning," a current trend where people tan the thin area of skin between the anus and the vagina or penis. The wellness practice is said to be beneficial by various supposed health practitioners who reportedly offer the practice gives “more energy from” the sun in 30 seconds “than you would in an entire day being outside with your clothes on” in addition to a hefty dose of vitamin D. Josh Brolin doesn't recommend the practice. "Tried this perineum sunning that I’ve been hearing about and my suggestion is DO NOT do it as long as I did," Brolin posted on Instagram a few days ago. "My pucker hole is crazy burned and I was going to spend the day shopping with my family and instead I’m icing and using aloe and burn creams because of the severity of the pain. I don’t know who the f-ck thought of this stupid shit but f-ck you nonetheless. Seriously."
Arjun Kapoor has gone bald for the first time to play Sadashiv Rao in his upcoming film, Panipat. The actor has now shared a behind-the-scenes video when he shaved off his hair for the role. Sharing the video on Instagram, Arjun wrote, “I can’t believe the film is about to come out... I shot this in January when we were about to begin shooting again after the new year break... it’s been a journey and a half. So grateful for the chance to play Bhau... 48 hours to go...” Hair stylist Aalim Hakim is seen shaving off his hair at his salon. He even places a bowl on his head to leave the right amount of hair as per the Hindu custom. He also shaves off his beard and grooms his moustache and eyebrows in the video. Arjun even jokes during the session that he will now look like Aalim’s bald twin. The picture got nearly 2 lakh ‘likes’ within a few hours including one from Arjun’s girlfriend Malaika Arora. A fan compared Arjun’s look to footballer Sadio Mané and wrote, “If sadio mane was Indian!” Another wrote, Proud of you my bro.
Thursday, 5 December, 2019
DopIng cAStS ShADow over putIn'S hopeS for SportIng preStIge MOSCOW
proposed four-year doping ban on Russian athletes would deal a huge new blow to President Vladimir Putin's efforts to use sport to boost national prestige and his own reputation. But experts say the Russian leader could also turn the ban to his advantage -- by portraying it as a politically motivated attempt by the West to once again humiliate the country at the expense of athletes. The executive committee of the World Anti-Doping Agency will meet in Lausanne on December 9 to consider a recommendation for the ban, which would exclude Russians from major sports events including the 2020 Tokyo Olympics and 2022 Beijing Winter Olympics. A WADA review panel has accused Moscow of falsifying laboratory data handed over to investigators as part of a probe into the doping allegations that have plagued Russia for years. In power for nearly 20 years, Putin has made sport and healthy living a cornerstone of his popularity and is regularly shown on state television taking part in judo matches or on the ice for hockey games. His government poured enormous resources into Russia's hosting of the 2014 Sochi Winter Olympics -- the first Olympics in Russia since 1980 -- but the Games were tainted by claims of widespread, state-sponsored doping. Russian athletes faced a series of bans over the next few years and were forced to participate in the
2018 Pyeongchang Winter Games as neutral competitors. Redemption seemed on the way with Russia's successful hosting of the 2018 football World Cup, and the reinstatement the same year of its RUSADA anti-doping body. But if the allegations of tampering with laboratory data are true, Russian authorities have managed to re-ignite the scandal, observers say. "I fear that we're headed for catastrophe, everything was done too cynically and grossly," Sergei Medvedev, a professor at Moscow's Higher School of Economics, wrote in Facebook post. The avid sports enthusiast compared the doping scandal to Russia's handling of the assassination attempt of defector Sergei Skripal in England and its denials of supplying separatists in eastern Ukraine with the missile that shot down flight MH17. In both instances Russia shifted blame with vehement denials and finger-pointing.
But in this case, Medvedev said, Russia will not get away "with a smirk from Putin" and a generation of Russian athletes could be prevented from pursuing their dreams. Sports commentators were hard on Russian authorities in the wake of the potential ban being announced, with many blaming criminal investigators who were responsible for handling the data. "I am sure our officials will never recognise that they have disgraced themselves and will never ask for forgiveness," sports commentator Alexei Durnovo told AFP. "We will never know the names" of those responsible, he added. Popular sports commentator Vasily Utkin even urged athletes to sue Russian authorities, who he said "were genetically linked to the security services". At the same time, analysts said the crisis was unlikely to seriously affect Putin's personal popularity. ATHLETES 'BETRAYED': Denis
Volkov, deputy director at pollster Levada, said authorities and statecontrolled media would bill the ban as a new move by the West to humiliate Russia -- and that the majority of Russians would accept that line. "The authorities will use this to their advantage," Volkov told AFP. "All of this will be interpreted in the sense of the West always against Russia." The question will be whether Russia's athletes buy it. Maria Lasitskene, a three-time world high jump champion, has already warned she would quit Russia and train elsewhere so as not to miss the Tokyo Olympics. Along with hurdler Sergey Shubenkov and pole vaulter Anzhelika Sidorova, the 26-year-old missed the Rio Olympics in 2016 because of the doping scandal. "I do not intend to miss a second Olympics in a row because of some strange people who cannot do their job honestly," Lasitskene has said on Instagram. Russian rugby star Vasily Artemyev said the country's athletes have been "betrayed". The Russian men's rugby sevens team is already out of contention for the Tokyo Games but the women's team is still hoping to qualify. Artemyev, who became a darling of the Rugby World Cup in Japan this year, said Russia needed to dismantle its current sport management model and build a new one from scratch. "We have to look each other in the eye and develop a new strategic plan," he told AFP. "We need a new face for Russian sport and it should be sincere."
'See you soon in Italy': Ibrahimovic fuels talk of Serie A return MILAN
Trent Alexander-Arnold has refused to let fame and success at European champions Liverpool to forget where he came from, and is inspired to help as "people are suffering" and relying on food banks. The England full-back -- who on Wednesday will help to maintain the Red's unbeaten Premier League record in the Merseyside derby -- is sad to see local people struggling as he stops by the St Andrew's food bank in his old north Liverpool stomping ground. "This is where I grew up so places like this are important to me," said Alexander-Arnold to British newspaper the Daily Mail. "It's disappointing to know this still exists because it means something isn't right in our country." Alexander-Arnold, 21, helps out when he has the time at St Andrew's -- a place where 25 percent of donated food comes before and after Liverpool and Everton home games. "Seeing how hard the guys here are working to make sure other people can have a hot meal over this winter period is great to see," said AlexanderArnold. "It inspires me to keep doing things in the community as people are suffering. Everyone in life should have a fair chance. "Places like this are not talked about enough. I would imagine there are hundreds up and down the country. They need recognition." In fact anti-hunger campaign group the Trussell Trust runs more than 1,200 food banks nationally and handed out a record 823,145 emergency parcels, which each comprise food for three days, in the six months to September this year. That was the busiest half-year since the organisation was created in 1997 and marked a 23-percent surge from the same period of 2018. Liverpool launched their Christmas food bank appeal on Tuesday and Alexander-Arnold believes the competitive one-upmanship nature of Everton and his club's fans will hugely benefit the St Andrew's one. "This is a city of two great teams and the rivalry will probably help the food bank," said Alexander-Arnold. "One set of fans doesn't want the other one to be seen as more generous or more giving. They will be competitive about it. "That's the way the people in the city think so hopefully St Andrew's and the people who rely on it will benefit."
Socceroos to face Argentina at copa America
Sweden footballer Zlatan Ibrahimovic has fuelled speculation that he is set to return to Italy, where he has played for AC Milan, Inter Milan and Juventus, by saying in an interview: "see you soon in Italy". The 38-year-old striker confirmed his departure from Los Angeles Galaxy last month following the club's elimination from the Major League Soccer playoffs. "I'll join a club which must get back to winning, which must renew its history and is in search of a battle against everyone and everything," Ibrahimovic told GQ Italia. "That is the only way I'll be able to find the necessary motivation to surprise you again. "It's not just about choosing a team, as there are other factors that need to line up, including in the interests of my family. "I'll see you in Italy soon." According to reports in Italy, Ibrahimovic has been offered a sixmonth deal to come to the aid of struggling former giants AC Milan, who are 11th in the Serie A table.
Local hero AlexanderArnold fuelled by Liverpool's community spirit
Chief of Army Staff General Qamar Javed Bajwa participates in the 39th Pak Army Rifle Association Central Meet, the countryâ€™s mega shooting competition
BEUNOS AIRES: Australia will face Lionel Messi and Argentina in next year's Copa America after being drawn alongside the tournament co-hosts on Tuesday. The Socceroos, one of two guest teams invited to the South American football championship, will also face Paraguay, Bolivia, Uruguay and Chile in Group A. In Group B, Asian champions Qatar, the other guest nation, will face Colombia, Brazil, Venezuela, Ecuador and Peru, with all games taking place in Colombia. The first round designations for Australia and Qatar were the only major issue left to be decided at Tuesday's ceremonial draw. The other teams in the two groups had already been determined based on geographical proximity to cohosts Argentina and Colombia, which are separated by some 4,350 miles (7,000 kilometers). AGENCIES
Radiation 'hot spots' near Olympic torch relay in Fukushima: Greenpeace TOKYO AGENCIES
Environmental pressure group Greenpeace said Wednesday it had detected what it called radiation "hot spots" near the starting point for the upcoming Olympic torch relay in Fukushima, northeastern Japan. Japan's environment ministry said the area in general was safe but added it was in talks with local communities to survey the region ahead of the Games that open on July 24. Greenpeace urged fresh radiation monitoring and continued clean-up efforts, saying its surveys had shown areas of high readings near J-Village, a sports complex located about 20 kilometres (12 miles) from the nuclear plant damaged in the 2011 tsunami. The Japanese government is keen to
use the Olympics to showcase Fukushima's recovery from the disaster and intends to use J-Village as the starting point for the Japan leg of the torch relay starting in March. Originally designed as a training centre for athletes, J-Village functioned for years as a logistics hub for crews working to control and decommission the crippled reactors. After a clean-up process, the sports centre became fully operational again in April this year, shortly after Japanese Olympic officials decided to use it as the starting point for the torch relay. Greenpeace said they had detected some spots with radiation levels as high as 1.7 microsieverts per hour when measured one metre (one yard) above the surface. This compared with the nationally allowed safety standard of 0.23 microsieverts per hour, and a normal read-
ing in Tokyo of around 0.04 microsieverts per hour. The hotspots showed a reading of 71 microsieverts per hour at the surface level, Greenpeace said. However, J-Village's internet site says the radiation reading at its main entrance was 0.111 microsieverts per hour on Wednesday, while one of its fields showed a reading of 0.085 microsieverts per hour. Tokyo Electric Power, which operates the Fukushima plant, said it cleaned the spots on Tuesday after the environment ministry told the company about them. Greenpeace said it had relayed its findings to the Japanese government as well as local and international Olympic organisers. The group will publish a report of its findings in the region next year.
Thursday, 5 December, 2019
KohLI BAcK At no 1 In teStS; BIg JuMpS for wArner, LABuSchAgne MUMBAI
HE baton of No. 1 Test batsman in the world has changed hands between Virat Kohli and Steven Smith again, with Kohli surpassing Smith following a century in his team's inaugural day-night Test, against Bangladesh in Kolkata. While Kohli led the Indian batting effort, Smith failed to go past 36 in Australia's home Tests against Pakistan, resulting in the swap at the top. The good news for Australia, though, is that David Warner and Marnus Labuschagne, who were in red-hot form against Pakistan, moved up to No. 5 and No. 8 respectively. Warner compiled the second highest individual score for Australia in Test cricket, going past the 334run mark of Donald Bradman and Mark Taylor in Adelaide, finishing on 335 not out as Australia declared their only innings. Only fellow opener Matthew Hayden has a higher mark for Australia: 380, against Zimbabwe in 2003. Warner's mammoth innings followed a knock of 154 in the first Test of the series, in Brisbane, resulting in him jumping 12 places up the rankings overall.
Labuschagne, meanwhile, was ranked as low as 110 at the start of 2019. His year took a dramatic turn when he became Test cricket's first concussion sub during the Lord's Test
of the Ashes series, slotting into the game in place of Smith - who had taken a blow to the helmet from Jofra Archer - and going on to score a match-saving, last-day 59. That won
him a place in the XI even when Smith returned, and he produced scores of 74, 80, 67, 11, 48 and 14 through the rest of the Ashes. His best was yet to come, though. In the home Tests against Pakistan, both innings victories, Labuschagne scored 185 and 162, completing a sensational charge into Test cricket's top ten batsmen. The Smith v Kohli race to No. 1 has been in overdrive ever since the former returned from his ball-tampering ban in mid-2019 and went on to have a stunning Ashes campaign. Smith had toppled Kohli during that series, in September, before Kohli scored a double-hundred against South Africa to return to within one rating point of Smith. Now, as things stand, Kohli is five rating points clear of Smith. Smith will have the chance to overtake him once again when Australia take on New Zealand at home from December 12. India do not play Test cricket again till they tour New Zealand early next year. Among others to gain in the latest updates were Babar Azam, the Pakistan batsman who hit 97 in the first innings of the Adelaide Test to move up two places to No. 13, while England captain Joe Root returned to the top ten after a week outside it following his innings of 226. That helped him move up from No. 11 to No. 7.
SPORTS 15 pM Imran to now focus on improving cricket, says Senator faisal Javed SPORTS DESK Prime Minister Imran Khan will now focus on improving sports, especially cricket, Pakistan Tehreeke-Insaf (PTI) Senator Faisal Javed Khan said on Wednesday. In a conversation with Geo Pakistan, Javed said the premier could not concentrate on cricket earlier as he was focused on stabilising the economy and strengthening the institutions, which were in shambles. The PTI senator said his party’s government will try to fix cricket through a long-term policy. He added that PTI leaders have held discussions on the recent decisions by the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) regarding the national team. Javed, while commenting on the appointment of Azhar Ali as the Test captain, said, “Appointing Azhar Ali as Test captain was not the right decision.” He added Pakistan always lost in Australia, but such a humiliating loss by the team was not expected. Commenting on PCB's new domestic structure, the senator said that the new domestic structure will give results. Pakistan will next take on Sri Lanka in two Tests. The first Test will start on December 11 in Rawalpindi, followed by the second in Karachi from December 19.
usman Shinwari, faheem Ashraf sign for Big Bash League
Javeria Khan seeks consistent performance in England ODIs u-19 coach sets sights on teen pacer naseem Shah for world cup SPORTS DESK: Pakistan’s U-19 Coach Ijaz Ahmed says he is looking to have teen pacer Naseem Shah back in the U-19 team for the the upcoming World Cup in South Africa next month. Ahmed said he would speak to chief selector/head coach Misbah-ul-Haq to release the 16-year-old so that he can be included in team and prepare for the World Cup. "Once Misbah and the team returns to Pakistan, I will speak to him regarding Naseem," he said. "Since the Sri Lanka series will be played on home ground, the national team will not need that many fast bowlers. I hope to see Naseem in the training camp." Hailing the teen pacer for his performance in the Test series against Australia and in particular his dismissal of David Warner, Ahmed said, "He made some mistakes and and no doubt he learned from them. The head coach also defended the teen pacer for his no-ball blunders and reminded critics of his age and the opponents whom he was up against. "Naseem is still very young, he was against a strong team so you can’t just gauge his performance based on one series,” he said. "He has some know-how of bowling in certain conditions and against certain players."
SPORTS DESK Cricketer Javeria Khan wants to make the most of Pakistan’s upcoming series against England and says victory could be possible if they control their nerves in pressure situations. The Pakistan women team is in Malaysia to play three oneday internationals (ODI) and three T20 matches. The ODI's are part of ICC Women’s Championship. “We have grown as a team over the last two-three years and the girls have improved in batting, bowling and fielding," Khan said in a conversation with pcb.com. "England are one of the top teams so we will have to make sure that we eradicate the mistakes. There have been times when matches have slipped away due to the dearth of experience or the lack of better pressure handling." She added the team has made progress in terms of their performance. “We have played good cricket recently and we should take confidence from it and
look to stretch the momentum into this series. It is pertinent for a team to take inspiration from its past performances,” she said. The former captain added that she was looking forward to enjoying her role as a senior player in the team and to push herself to perform better. “My aim is to put up big scores consistently to help my team gain winning momentum,” she added. Pakistan are fifth on the ICC Women’s Championship points table, one point below the fourth-ranked South Africa. Victory against England will open up the possibility of them
securing a berth in the ICC Women’s Cricket World Cup 2021. ScHEDULE: December 9 - First ODI (ICC Women's Championship), Kinrara Oval December 12 - Second ODI (ICC Women's Championship), Kinrara Oval December 14 - Third ODI (ICC Women's Championship), Kinrara Oval December 17 - First T20I, Kinrara Oval December 19 - Second T20I, Kinrara Oval December 20 - Third T20I, Kinrara Oval
Mickey Arthur set to become Sri Lanka head coach COLOMBO AGENCIES
Mickey Arthur is set to take over as Sri Lanka's head coach. SLC has agreed a two-year contract with Arthur, the former South Africa, Australia and Pakistan coach, with a formal announcement to be made shortly. Joining his backroom staff will be Grant Flower as batting coach, David Saker as bowling coach, and Shane McDermott as fielding coach, in what is a complete overhaul of the team's coaching setup. "They will all be joining on two-year contracts," SLC CEO Ashley De Silva confirmed. ESPNcricinfo understands that
Defending champions Melbourne Renegades have signed Pakistan left-arm seamer Usman Shinwari and allrounder Faheem Ashraf for a chunk of the upcoming Big Bash League season. Shinwari will be available for the first five games, with England quick Harry Gurney replacing him for the remainder of the season, while new recruit Faheem will be replaced by Afghanistan allrounder Mohammad Nabi after eight games. The upcoming season will be Shinwari's second stint in the BBL. He played seven games for Renegades last season, finishing with eight wickets at an economy rate of 6.14. Faheem was the secondhighest wicket-taker in the 2019 Pakistan Super League with 21 strikes in 12 innings for Islamabad United after finishing on top of the list in 2018. He has 93 wickets and 558 runs in the 83 T20s he has played since his debut in the format in 2015. Nabi, meanwhile, will be returning for a third season with the team, having scored 316 runs and picked up 16 wickets in 21 games in the last two seasons. Gurney, who impressed with his variations during their successful 2018-19 season, picked up ten wickets in nine matches then. "I'm pleased with how we're shaping up," new head coach Michael Klinger said. "Mohammad Nabi and Harry Gurney showed their class last season so we're glad to have them on board for the second half of the home and away season and hopefully finals. "After winning a title, the competition for spots in the XI is going to be fierce and we feel we've got plenty of options to cover the challenges that we'll be confronted with throughout the season." Renegades will begin their title defence against Sydney Thunder on December 19 at the Simonds Stadium in Geelong.
Flower will only work with Sri Lanka's white-ball teams, and will not travel to Pakistan for the two-match Test series later this month. Arthur is the 11th head coach of the Sri Lanka men's team in the last eight years, and his first challenge will be a return to Pakistan where he had been head coach from 2016 until the end of this year's ODI World Cup in July. It is understood interim head coach Rumesh Ratnayake will also be on tour to help with the transition. Pakistan removed Arthur as head coach earlier this year, following a string of poor results, but the team also achieved some notable highs during his tenure, including winning the 2017 Champions Trophy and gaining the No. 1 ranking in Tests, briefly, and in T20Is. Flower joins Arthur's backroom staff having vacated the head coach role at
Bangladesh Premier League (BPL) side Rangpur Rangers. Flower has a good working relationship with Arthur, having worked with him as Pakistan's batting coach before he too was let go earlier this year. Saker has worked as bowling coach for both England and Australia over the last ten years, before he took up the role of bowling coach with USA earlier this year - one he has now left. McDermott was the first of the four new appointments to have come on board, with SLC securing his contract earlier this month on the recommendation of Cricket Australia. He had earlier served as the South Australia Cricket Association's high-performance coach. Despite the new appointments, however, previous Sri Lanka head coach Chandika Hathurusingha remains under contract with SLC.
Thursday, 5 December, 2019
NEWS US envoy in Kabul amid signs talks with Taliban to resume KABUL: The United States’ envoy for Afghan peace process, Zalmay Khalilzad, arrived in Kabul on Wednesday, an Afghan official said, days after US President Donald Trump suggested stalled talks were back on. “Khalilzad is in Kabul and will meet with the president and other senior Afghan officials later,” a senior Afghan official told AFP, adding that the resumption of talks for a deal with the Taliban would be on the agenda. However, the US embassy in Kabul declined to comment. In September, the US and the Taliban had appeared on the verge of signing a deal that would have seen Washington begin pulling thousands of troops out of Afghanistan in return for security guarantees. It was also expected to pave the way towards direct talks between the Taliban and the government in Kabul and, ultimately, a possible peace agreement after more than 18 years of war. But that month Trump abruptly called the year-long effort “dead”, and withdrew an invitation to the insurgents to meet in the US due to the killing of an American soldier. During a surprise visit to an American military base in Afghanistan last week, Trump said the Taliban “wants to make a deal”. AGENICES
Legal experts summoned by Democrats call Trump’s actions impeachable WAshington: President Donald Trump’s actions to prod Ukraine to pursue investigations that could benefit him politically represent impeachable offenses, constitutional law experts called by Democrats testified to the U.S. Congress on Wednesday as lawmakers laid the groundwork for formal charges against Trump. At a House of Representatives Judiciary Committee hearing featuring political theatrics, three law professors chosen by the Democrats made clear that they believed Trump’s actions constituted impeachable offenses including abuse of power, bribery, obstruction of Congress and obstruction of justice. A law professor selected by Trump’s fellow Republicans disagreed, saying the Democratic-led impeachment inquiry was “slipshod” and “rushed” and lacked testimony from people with direct knowledge of the relevant events, adding that current evidence does not show Trump committed “a clear criminal act.” As Trump headed toward possible impeachment in the Democratic-controlled House within weeks, Republican lawmakers repeatedly tried to interrupt the hearing by raising objections and points of order. One of the three professors called by the Democrats told the committee’s top Republican, Doug Collins, she felt insulted by remarks he made. AGENCIES
‘Niazi-NaB Nexus’ seized my ProPerties, claims shehBaz PML-N PRESIDENT SAYS ALLIANCE BETWEEN PRIME MINISTER LASHES OUT AT THE GOVT OVER INFLATION, UNEMPLOYMENT AND ACCOUNTABILITY WATCHDOG HAS FAILED MISERABLY AND LACK OF FOCUS ON INFRASTRUCTURAL DEVELOPMENT ISLAMABAD
AKISTAN Muslim LeagueNawaz (PML-N) President and Leader of the Opposition in the National Assembly (NA) Shehbaz Sharif on Wednesday claimed that the "NiaziNAB nexus" had seized his immovable assets. Addressing a press conference in London, where he is accompanying his elder brother, PML-N supreme leader Nawaz Sharif, for medical treatment, he said that the government was trying to divert attention from its “incompetence” through such “vindictive measures”. It is worth mentioning here that on Tuesday, the accountability watchdog withdrew a set of appeals when it failed to establish before the Supreme Court (SC) that the PML-N president had allegedly abused his power in the Ashianae-Iqbal Housing Society case. Meanwhile, NAB also seized the immovable assets of Shehbaz and his family. He said that the "Niazi-NAB nexus" had once more been “dealt a defeat”, adding that he is confident that his brother would also be proven innocent. "Under Nawaz's leadership, from 2014-2018, despite tough challenges,
the credit for all development projects completed goes to him and his team,” he said. “Without going into too many details, I just want to provide one example of such development projects. You must recall that before 2014 there used to be load-shedding of more than 20 hours. This was a great challenge which Nawaz had said he would try his best to meet within five years, during cam-
paigning in 2013. He worked day and night and power projects of 11000MW were completed. CPEC had an important role in it as with the cooperation of China, thousands of megawatts of electrical power projects were installed as an investment,” he added. Shehbaz praised Nawaz’s "political wisdom" and said that an additional 5,000MW of gas-based power projects had also been developed at a historical
pace and at a low cost. "General Electric won bids after very transparent bidding. The original costing was $45 billion but they were installed at half that amount and we also saved Rs160 billion,” he added. The PML-N president said that the prime minister and his advisers had been issuing statements against the leadership of his party for the past oneand-a-half year. "Every Pakistani is disappointed with this alliance between Niazi and NAB," he said. Criticising the premier, he said, "I have never in my life seen a prime minister who lies as much as Imran. Had he spent one-fourth of his time for Pakistan's development circumstances would be different today.” He also said that the government could not build a single home in the past one-and-a-half year when it promised people five million houses. "The failed policies of the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) government have resulted in rising unemployment in the country. We are burying ourselves in debt," he said, adding that “there are some ministers in the government who had used their political influence to have loans written off”. "Those who were involved in corruption, you [Imran] made them your advisers," he concluded.
Opp seeks ‘diplomatic emergency’ over Kashmir ISLAMABAD STAFF REPORT
The opposition parties on Wednesday criticised the government’s alleged inability to highlight the Kashmir issue at world forums, saying a ‘diplomatic emergency’ must be declared to effectively highlight the Kashmir cause. The National Assembly session convened on Wednesday and will continue till December 20. During this session, the Lower House will debate on matters of public interest and importance along with legislation, it was agreed during the meeting. Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz
(PML-N) leader Ahsan Iqbal criticised Organisation of Islamic Cooperation’s (OIC) tepid response to the Kashmir crisis and said that if the body does not agree to call a session on the issue, Pakistan should “immediately announce its exit”. “We don’t need a dead forum that cannot even call a session on [occupied] Kashmir,” he declared. He appealed to the foreign minister to visit at least 10 to 15 countries over the next 15 days and inform foreign governments about the situation in occupied Kashmir “so that the world can know that this is a panic situation”. “Thirdly, envoys should be sent [to important capitals] immediately, send
parliamentary delegations if you must, but rouse the world. If you don’t shake the world awake and tell them that this is a calamity, who will raise this issue?” Pakistan People’s Party (PPP) leader and former prime minister Raja Pervez Ashraf regretted that the government had failed to even force India to lift the curfew in occupied Kashmir. In response, Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi urged the opposition not to “minimise” Pakistan’s efforts in this regard. “When Pakistan’s efforts are minimised, you are being minimised and Pakistan’s stance is being weakened. Please, do not minimise what Pakistan has done. Yes, contribute and add to what
we have done and if you have positive suggestions, God willing, we will incorporate them into our thinking,” he added. “On this issue and on issues of national interest, we are open to input [… ] the input and the voice of this House do not weaken our hands but strengthen them,” the foreign minister said. He assured the House that the New Delhi’s move of abrogating occupied Kashmir’s special status was being condemned by Indian politicians. Munir Orakzai, a lawmaker hailing from former FATA, challenged Qureshi’s claim that the PTI government had taken a lead among all the previous governments on highlighting and internationalising Kashmir.
Probe into alleged crimes in Afghanistan begins at The Hague KABUL AGENCIES
The International Criminal Court (ICJ) opened a three-day hearing on Wednesday at which prosecutors and victims aim to overturn a decision scrapping a proposed investigation into alleged crimes in Afghanistan’s brutal conflict. Fergal Gaynor, a lawyer representing 82 Afghani victims, called it a historic day for accountability in Afghanistan. In April, judges rejected a request by the court’s prosecutor, Fatou Bensouda, to open an investigation into crimes allegedly committed by the Taliban, Afghan security forces and American military and intelligence agencies. In the ruling, which was condemned by victim’s and right’s groups, the judges said that an investigation “would not serve the interests of justice” because it would likely fail due to lack of cooperation. The decision came a month after US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo banned visas for ICC staff seeking to investigate allegations of war crimes and other abuses by US forces in Afghanistan or elsewhere. Prosecutor Fatou Bensouda’s request to open an investigation said there is information that members of the US military and intelligence agencies “committed acts of torture,
JAPANESE DOCTOR WHO HELPED AFGHANS FOR DECADES AMONG SIX KILLED IN ATTACK KABUL: A Japanese doctor whose long career was dedicated to helping some of Afghanistan’s poorest people was among six people killed Wednesday in an attack in the east of the country, officials said. The armed assault in Jalalabad city, the capital of Nangarhar province, was the second deadly incident involving aid workers in recent days and prompted appalled reaction in Afghanistan and internationally. Tetsu Nakamura, 73, was the head of Peace Japan Medical Services — known as Peshawar Kai in Japanese — and had been working in the region since the 1980s, when he began treating patients with leprosy in Peshawar in neighbouring Pakistan. A spokesman for Afghan President Ashraf Ghani called Nakamura “one of the closest friends of Afghanistan”. He “dedicated his life to helping and cooperating with our people”, spokesman Sediq Seddiqi said. Attaullah Khogyani, a spokesman for Nangarhar’s governor, said Nakamura, who had been shot in the chest, was in the process of being transferred to a hospital in Bagram near Kabul when he died. Five Afghans were also killed: three of Nakamura’s security guards, a driver and another colleague, Khogyani said. The attack comes as humanitarian groups are on high alert just days after an aid worker for the UN was killed in a bombing in Kabul. AGENCIES
cruel treatment, outrages upon personal dignity, rape and sexual violence against conflict-related detainees in Afghanistan and other
locations, principally in the 20032004 period.” She also said that the Taliban and other insurgent groups have killed more
than 17,000 civilians since 2009, including some 7,000 targeted killings. She alleged that Afghan security forces have tortured prisoners at gov-
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ernment detention centres. Even as they rejected the request for an investigation, judges in April acknowledged that Bensoudas November 2017 request to open a probe established a reasonable basis to consider that crimes within the ICC jurisdiction have been committed in Afghanistan and that potential cases would be admissible before the court. Wednesday’s hearing was focused on whether victims have a right under the court’s Rome Statute founding document to take part in the appeal. Gaynor told the five-judge panel that it is vital victims’ views are taken into account in the appeal. “We are here to challenge a decision that has extinguished all of their rights under the statute and has caused enormous damage to any hopes they have for justice and accountability,” Gaynor told judges. He said it is critically important that victims can appeal a decision that represents “a clear and extreme danger to their rights. With other states unwilling or unable to investigate the Afghanistan crimes, “the only jurisdiction in the world […] that can offer the victims a prompt and impartial investigation into the brutal crimes committed against them is this court,” Gaynor told judges.