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IMF approves 3rd tranche of $545m to Pakistan Dar expresses satisfaction over Fund’s findings

7 Afghan soldiers die in roadside blast KABUL—Officials say a roadside bomb has killed seven Afghan soldiers in the west of the country. The spokesman for Afghanistan’s defense ministry, Gen. Mohammad Zahir Azimi, said the powerful blast hit the soldiers’ vehicle in the Dilaram district of Farah province. Azimi said no other soldiers were seriously wounded, but declined to provide further details on the explosion. There was no immediate claim of responsibility. The Taliban have escalated attacks in recent months as they try to take advantage of the withdrawal of foreign troops, who handed over Continued on Page 7

13 dead in rival Bugti tribes clash KASHMORE —At least 13 persons including two women were killed and many others injured in an armed clash between two groups of Bugti tribes Sunday. Police said two groups of Bugti clan hailing from Baskat area at Sindh-Balochistan border near Tangwan, traded fire. Members of both groups used rocket launchers and sophisticated weapons against each other in the clash. As a result, nine people including two women were killed on the spot while several others sustained injuries who were moved to hospital. Four injured succumbed to

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I SLAMABAD —International Monetary Fund (IMF) has approved the third tranche of five hundred forty five million dollars to Pakistan under the six point six billion dollars Extended Fund Facility. This was stated by the head of IMF Mission Jeffery Franks while addressing a joint news conference after a meeting with Finance Minister Ishaq Dar in Dubai. Frank said both the parties have reached the loan agreement. He said Pakistani economy is moving towards the set objectives. He said the economic growth has increased from 2.8 to 3.1 percent. He said that decisive efforts to broaden the tax net through the elimination of tax exemptions and loopholes granted through Statutory regulatory Orders (SROs) are critical to the future of Pakistan’s economy. An International Monetary Fund (IMF) staff mission, led by Jeffrey Franks, met with the Pakistan authorities in Dubai from February 19, 2014 for discussions on the second review of Pakistan’s IMF-supported program under the Extended Fund Facility (EFF) approved by the Executive Board of the IMF on September 4, 2013. At the conclusion the IMF

PM to chair CCI meeting today STAFF REPORTER I SLAMABAD —The Council of Common Interests is due to meet today (Monday) to consider issues relating to census and the power distribution companies. The meeting will be chaired by the Prime Minister Mian Muhammad Nawaz Sharif. It will be attended by the four chief ministers and the chief secretaries besides federal minsters, Pir Sadruddin Rashdi, Abdul Qadir Baloch, Sardar Yusuf, Ishaq Dar, Khawaja Asif and Anusha Rahman. A demand regarding abolition of 17% sales tax on sale and purchase of foreign currencies in Punjab and Sindh is also on agenda. The CCI will also consider the request of Baluchistan to buy 20 % shares of SSGC, PPL and OGDCL. Another item on the agenda is provision of water to Islamabad from Indus River.

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mission in a statement said that it is shedding declining. 14 as a whole, compared to the earencouraged by the overall progress Led by large scale manufactur- lier estimate of 2.8 percent. Fiscal made in pushing ahead with policies to strengthen macroeconomic stability and reviving economic growth. The mission reached staff-level understandings with the authorities on a set of economic policies detailed in an updated Letter of Intent, which will be subject to Executive Board approval. The statement further said that foreign exchange market of Pakistan has been stabilized however pressures on the balance of payments are likely to persist for some months. IMF said that services and manufacturing are driving DUBAI: IMF Mission Chief, Jeffery Franks and Finance Minister, Senator Muhammad better-than-expected Ishaq Dar addressing a joint press conference. GDP growth, as reforms in the electricity sector seem ing and service sectors, growth is performance continued on track in to be bearing fruit with electricity picking up and is now expected to the second quarter of 2013/14, with shortages and unscheduled load- reach about 3.1 percent for FY2013/ Continued on Page 7

Altaf asks Army Chief to take notice of atrocities in Karachi MQM alleges police taking Rs 220m bribe daily IRFAN ALIGI KARACHI —Muttahidda Qaumi Movement (MQM) founder leader Altaf Hussain while addressing the Chief of the Army Staff General Rahil Shareef said that he was utterly compelled to appeal to him to take notice of violations of human rights by the Pakistan Rangers Sindh so as to free the Mohajirs from the atrocities being inflicted on them on daily basis. The MQM Chief said that many work-

ers of the MQM had gone missing as Rangers had kidnapped them but was denying their arrests. Many workers of the MQM had also been killed extra-judicially by Rangers during past few months and the bodies of thus killed workers of the MQM were dropped along side roads. Altaf Hussain was addressing a press conference at the Khursheed Begum secretariat from London Monday. The members of MQM Coordination Committee in

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Blaze kills 12, injures 130 pilgrims in Medina hotel RIYADH—A fire killed 12 people and injured on Egypt’s state television station, all killed 130 others in a pilgrim hotel in the Saudi holy city of Medina Saturday, the state-run SPA news agency reported. Officials did not identify the victims but said around 700 pilgrims were staying at the hotel in Medina, in western Saudi Arabia, to perform the Umrah pilgrimage. However according to a separate report

were Egyptians and the blaze was started by an electrical short circuit. The fire broke out in the afternoon and was brought under control a few hours later, while survivors were transferred to other hotels in the city. Authorities have launched an investigation into the cause of the blaze.—AP

NATO container set alight in Sibi, two killed STAFF REPORTER

Progress reported in Govt-Taliban talks Sami: Meeting venue changed frequently due to hovering drones; Nisar warns against sabotagers of talks TARIQ SAEED PESHAWAR—The Two members negotiating team of Taliban comprising Professor Ibrahim Khan and Maulana Yousaf Shah are reported to have held a second round of talks with the Taliban leadership at an undisclosed location in North Waziristan agency on Sunday amid reports that the two sides advanced further to find out a negotiated settlement of the bloodshed and unrest in the region. However, it was reported that the talks were held in an atmosphere of tension and harassment as according to Maulana Sami ul Haq the drones were scene hovering on the skies in the region and the negotiators had to change the venue of the meeting many times. On the other hand the Interior minister Chaudhry Nisar while expressing concern over the delayed return of the two members negotiating team, warned that any attempt by the external forces to sabotage the peace dialogues would be tantamount to direct enmity with Pakistan. In the meanwhile, it was reported that the negotiating team comprising Professor Ibrahim Khan and Maulana Yousaf Shah has

safely returned to North Waziristan agency and landed at the Political compound where they are scheduled to attend a dinner hosted un their honor by the Political administration of North Waziristan agency. The senior member of the Taliban nominated committee and JI Ameer of Khyber Pukhtunkhwa Professor Ibrahim is also said to have contacted Maulana Sami ul Haq on Telephone on Sunday morning in Islamabad and apprised him of the progress about the ongoing peace talks with the Taliban Shoora as Taliban are reported to have put forth three conditions including release of held militants and withdrawal of the Army. The Taliban nominated two members committee or the mediators, it may be recalled , had reached Miran Shah, the headquarters of North Waziristan Agency on Saturday to meet with the Taliban leadership and convey the conditions of the official committee as well as to apprise themselves of the militant’s demands. Their visit to the destination was facilitated through helicopter, provided by the interior ministry that airlifted them to the Political Agent South

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Q UETTA —Unknown persons attacked a Nato container-carrying truck, setting it alight, while killing two persons including the driver of the vehicle in Sibi area of Balochistan, on Sunday. The motorcycle-riding gunmen opened fire on a truck, which was travelling from Karachi to Chaman, kill-

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MQM worker released Four cops suspended STAFF REPORTER KARACHI —Karachi Police have released a worker of the Muttahidda Qaumi Movement (MQM), Fahad Aziz. He was returning home after getting married in Shah

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Five killed, 9 injured in Aastana firing STAFF REPORTER K ARACHI —Monday night gunned down 5 people and injured 9. The bodies and injured were shifted to the Civil Hospital Karachi. According to details, the terrorists on motorcycle despite ban on pillion riding reached an Aastana of Pir Meherban Shah alias Jalali Baba located in Baldia Town No 12 and opened indiscriminate fire on people there. Women and children were among those killed and injured. The Sindh Chief Minister Syed Qaim Ali Shah had condemned the incident of terrorism and asked the provincial police chief to submit a preliminary report in 24hours and take all measures to apprehend the culprits. Muttahidda Qaumi Movement Chief Altaf Hussain also condemned the incident and demanded the culprits should be arrested and taken to task. Jamaat-e Islami Ameer Syed Munawwar Hassan and general secretary Liaquat Balouch also condemned the incident of terrorism.


Varsities’ academic staff body announces strike HYDERABAD—The Federation of All Pakistan Universities Academic Staff Association, Sindh chapter, has announced a strike in all the Sindh’s universities on February 17. Addressing a press conference here on Sunday, the FAPUASA Sindh’s General Secretary Prof Ahsan Memon said the academic activities will remain suspended in all of the universities while in the other provinces a one-hour token boycott would be observed. Prof Memon said their protest was a reaction to the Sindh Government’s delaying tactics which is avoiding to amend the Sindh Universities Laws (Amendment) Act, 2013, to give autonomy to the institutions of higher learning. Sindh University Teachers Association’s (SUTA) President Dr Azhar Ali Shah and Secretary Dr Arfana Mallah, Mehran University Teachers Association’s (MUTA) General Secretary Prof Arshad Memon and Sindh Agriculture University Teachers Association’s President Prof Liaquat Jamali were also present at the press conference.—APP

PPAF disburses Rs 90 bln since inception

Kabul, Swat like Shariah not acceptable

Parliament should be taken into confidence over peace talks: Haji Adeel ISLAMABAD—Acting President of Awami National Party (ANP) Senator Haji Muhammad Adeel has said that Taliban’s brand of Shariah like that in Kabul and Swat was not acceptable at any cost. He said it would have been better if the government had taken the parliament into confidence prior initiating peace talks. Talking to INP here on Sunday, Haji Adeel said the demand of Shariah was not wrong but the Taliban should define Shariah they desire as every sect and faction has own definition of Shariah. He said if cooperation of Afghan Taliban or any other country was needed to make peace talks meaningful then it should be sought through diplomatic sources. The ANP leader said his party desired peace across the country and was ready to extend all sorts of cooperation in this regard. Haji Adeel said though the government was mandated for peace talks in All Parties Conference (APC) but eight months have passed and the current situation was much different. He said it would have been better if the government had

taken the parliament in confidence over peace dialogues issue. He said that solo flight can create hurdles but political parties can give better suggestion to the government regarding peace talks, inform about their reservations and objections over dialogues with the Taliban. Meanwhile, Central Leader of Awami National Party, Senator Haji Muhammad Adeel has congratulated Raza Ullah Khan Advocate of Malgare Wakeelan for his election as President in polls of District Bar Association. In a press release issued form Baacha Khan Markaz here Sunday, ANP leader while congratulating newly elected president and office bearers expressed the hope that they would continue their professional obligations with full zeal PESHAWAR: Health workers administering polio drops to children during anti-polio campaign launched by provincial government. and dedication. He also praised role of lawyer’s community for democracy and said their sacrifices for the noble cause would not go waste and always be remembered. He said that ANP has raised voice for rights of lawyers at every available and would continue its support to them in future.—INP/APP

6398 candidates applying for teachers seats

Land dispute claims 11 lives

JAND—As many as 6398 can-

Former councillor shot dead in Swabi KANDHKOT—At least eleven people including women and children were killed after a land dispute between two rival groups in Kandhkot area of Sindh, officials said on Sunday. According to details, armed men entered the house of the rival group and opened firing, killing eight people on spot. The deceased include Madad Ali, Shero, Gobang, Imam Baksh, Marhato, Ameera Bibi, Mir Zadi Bibi and Imdad. Later, the armed men escaped from the site. Soon after knowing the news, the affected clan attacked the motorcycle riders of the rival group and killed three people. The dead include Ayub, Mir Ali and Neematullah. Tense situation prevailed in the area soon after the incident. Swabi: Unknown assailants killed former member of a union council by indiscriminate firing in village Meenai on Sunday, police said.

According to a report lodged in Police Station Topi, Ejaz Muhammd, former member of union council was on way to home when un unknown attackers started firing. He died on the spot while culprits of the incident managed to escape from crime scene. The reason behind the killing has not been ascertained yet. Meanwhile, police has started probe into the incident. Faisalabad: A girl was killed while her father was injured over a domestic issue Bitala Colony police limits on Sunday. According to police, the accused, Zulfiqar, opened firing on Akhtar Mahmood along with his daughter Mehak of Bohrrwala Chowk Warispura on an issue. As a result, Mehak died on the spot while Akhtar received injuries.Police have registered a case against the accused.

ISLAMABAD—Pakistan Poverty Alleviation Fund (PPAF) has disbursed Rs. 90 billion for microcredit in 5.6 million cases,since commencement of operations in April 2000 to December 31, 2013. According to official data available,total funds available with PPAF as of December 31, 2013 are over Rs. 25 billion.These include Rs.18.0 billion for Microcredit while Rs. 7.6 billion are for grants. As of December 31, 2013, Rs. 17 billion (out of available 18 billion) have been deployed for access to microcredit, official sources told APP. The funds provided to PPAF for microcredit are used for on-lending to Partner Organizations (POs). The POs provide microcredit loans to individuals/communities following a demand driven approach, sources told. He said a significant portion of PPAF funding (around 75 percent) is provided for microcredit in the rural areas where most of the poor exist. “These loans are used mainly in agriculture, commerce and livestock sectors”. As of December 31, 2013 the number of active borrowers financed by POs is 900,000 of which 55 percent are women, reveals official data. Official sources said grant funds are provided to POs for small scale water and infrastructure schemes, health and education interventions, social mobilization, livelihood enhancement and disaster man- LAKKI MARWAT: Police officials checking papers of motorcycle during anti-car liftagement.—APP ing drive.

didates are applying for 1074 seats of teachers lying vacant in government schools across Attock district. As per the sources a special committee has been constituted for the scrutiny of the application submitted by the candidates. The candidates having passed NTS test by obtaining minimum 50 marks and fulfilling other prerequisites will be considered as eligible and will be included in the final merit list. The seats include BPS 9, 12, 14 and 16 are lying vacant for which 4,000 females and more than 2,000 male candidates are applying for the posts. The sources further said that recruitment on these vacant seats will be made entirely on merit and in a transparent manner as Chief Minister Punjab has not allocated any quota for these posts.—APP

Levies detain alleged bandits from bordering town Chaman C HAMAN —Chaman Levies rounded up three alleged bandits, seized a stolen vehicle and weapons from their possession here in Rehman Khol Road area on Sunday. Local Levies sources said working on a tip-off, a Levies party raided a house in the area and detained three alleged bandits who were present there. Levies party also recovered snatched car, motorcycle and a AK47 rifle from the raiding sites.—APP

British Council to open in October SALAHUDDIN HAIDER

E

NGLISH language, like French, Persian and Urdu, is not only lively, and rich in expressionism, but full of passion. A demonstration of this was too vivid to escape attention at the reception jointly organized by the British Council and the British Deputy High Commissioner in Karachi in honour of participants of the annual Karachi Literary Festival Friday night. An atmosphere of goodwill, togetherness, and compassion pervaded the courtyard and the vast lawns of the Avaris’s residence, crowded by people from almost all walks of life. The threeday festival, opened Friday morning at the Beach Luxury Hotel, owned by the Avaris, who chose to play host to participants at their residence at night. A great gesture on the part of Byram and his family. Naturally, the discussions were intense and articulate. Diplomats, mixing with journalists, and men of letters,

is not uncommon, but in such great numbers, was indeed a rarity. Topics ranged from politics, to literature, ailments, afflicting the society, and problems the world now faces. A situation like this, had, indeed, turned the occasion unforgettable. Being a part of it was far more fortunate for me than I could hardly conceive before being there. Almost everyone who attended the Festival’s inaugural session, seemed impressed by the keynote address of the Indian historian and eminent literary figure Raj Mohan Gandhi, the grandson of Indian Godfather, Gandhi ji or Bapu as they call him. There were personalities like the British High Commissioner Phillip Barton, Ameena Syed, chief of the Oxford University Press who too had been in the forefront of organizing the great occasion. Credit goes to her for conceiving it, and then executing the plan. The British Council, and the British mission in Karachi took pains to ensure its success and success it was in true sense of the word. In the words of High Commissioner Barton, 200 speakers from 11 countries, itself spoke of its greatness. Phillip hardly in Pakistan for five

weeks, made it a point to be here, which showed his interest in Karachi. He said he also wanted to visit Lahore, because on previous visits to Pakistan he hardly found time to be away from Islamabad. He has now making up for it. American Consul General Michael Dodman, and his lovely wife Joan, when seen talking to journalist-cummedia specialist Babar Ayaz, was told about his wonderful book, which he only recently published. Titled “What is wrong with Pakistan” reflects a deep study on religious fanaticism. The American couple seemed deeply interested in that and would probably be able to learn something more from its contents. Former debator of the Karachi University, and always a prize winner, an advertising practitioner, and three times minister in federal cabinet, was as eloquent as ever. His sheer presence invariably becomes a matter of immense delight for any gathering of intellect. To illuminate the assembly, the British Deputy High Commissioner John Trucknott, and the Islamabadbased director of the British Council Peter Upton, his second in command, and chief of the British Council in

Karachi, Barbara, and number two at the British High Commission here Gillian Atkinson, were present too. In brief remarks, Upton announced that British Council will be opened to public in Karachi and Lahore in October this year, and even at Peshawar, with 23 more centres at different places. This was a great news for book lovers, students, academics, journalists etc, for the British Council is one of the most prestigious organizations in the realm of knowledge and information. A great hospitable and loveable personality of eminent businessman Kaleem Faooqi was there to add to peoples’ joy. He is not only an extremely successful businessman, with worldwide connections, but is extremely hurmous and witty. Ameena Syed in her remarks thanked the British diplomatic missions in Islamabad and Karachi, and the British Council for their keen interests in making the literary festival a success. She announced that work was on to arrange for translation of books in local languages, like Sindhi, Baluchi, Pushto, Seraiki, besides urdu. If that is done, it will be a great service to introduce Pakistani literature globally.

Loadshedding to be eliminated in 3-year: Minister

C HAKWAL —Punjab Minister for Housing, Tanvir Aslam Malik here on Sunday said that the load-shedding issue will be resolved in three years. Addressing a public gathering here, the Minister said that Punjab Government is committed to resolve energy crisis and facilitate smooth growth of business and industrial activities in the province. He said energy crisis has left negative impact on trade and industrial activities and the government is taking all possible measures on war footing for resolving this challenging problem. He further said that Punjab government has signed different agreements with international companies to get rid of this problem. Meanwhile, Provincial Minister for Prisons Chaudhry Abdul Waheed Arrain said the government was taking practical steps to overcome energy crisis as Thar Coal Power project will help end loadshedding. He said this in a meeting with workers at his residence here on Sunday. He said the government would overcome the issues at the earliest. He said CM Punjab Shahbaz Sharif would soon give a big city status to Multan to end a sense of deprivation of the area. He said workers were an asset of the party who could not be ignored.

PESHAWAR, Feb 9 (APP): A foreign Company Deokjae has expressed its keen interest to invest and work in highway infrastructure and energy sectors in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa under public private partnership. It also showed special interest to invest in the proposed project of Chakdara-Swat expressway. To this effect Chief Executive Officer of the company Hamid Rasul made a call on meeting with Advisor to Chief Minister on Economic Affairs and In-charge of Investment Promotion Cell RafaqatUllah Babar here on Sunday. Concerned authorities of Provincial Housing Department and other representatives of the company were also present on the occasion. It was told in the meeting that feasibility report of the proposed Chakdara-Swat Expressway has already been prepared. Representatives of the company briefed the Advisor about the experience and technical expertise of the company in the aforesaid fields. Rafaqatullah Babar appreciated the expertise of the company and wished the company’s representatives to arrange a briefing to Chief Minister Khyber Pakhtunkhwa. He assured that the provincial government would utilize the expertise of the company and would provide all possible facilities to interested companies to invest in the province in various sectors.—APP

Reconstitution of Railways Board on cards ISLAMABAD—The summary for reconstitution of Railways Board has been submitted to Law and Parliamentary Affairs Division, Finance Division and Establishment Division simultaneously. The meetings with Finance and Establishment divisions are scheduled during this month and after getting their inputs the final draft will be submitted to the Cabinet Division for approval, an official told APP. The appointment of a professional Director General Legal Affairs is in process and will be completed in the shortest possible time after fulfilling all codal formalities and procedures, he said. The Vigilance Cell has been re-activated with young and energetic officers who have started to monitor the activities of field officers and officials.

The blue eyed corrupt officers working against key posts have been replaced with honest and dedicated ones, he added. He said merit, honesty and deliverance was the criteria to appointment of staff on key posts. At present, there was no recruitment in the department due to ban and whenever these would be made, it would be purely on merit. The computerization of Railways land is a lengthy and tedious process for which the assistance of provincial governments has been sought, he added. Pakistan Railways is a huge department scattered all over the country and requires major reforms. The process has started which will take some time in completion, however the work in this direction is going on at full pace.—APP

Low level of RBCs causing health problems FAISALABAD—Low concentration of Red Blood Cells (RBCs) is contributing to a number of health related problems, causing weakness, fatigue, mental confusion and strain on organs of body in the women. Talking to APP here on Sunday, socialogists Dr. Muhammad Iqbal Zafar and Zahira Batool, on “Socio-cultural factors causing anemia and its effects on the mother and child health in rural areas of Faisalabad” revealed that anemia is a blood condition in which there are too few red blood cells or the red blood cells are deficient in hemoglobin, resulting in poor health. They said that common reasons of anemia are lack of dietary iron, heavy blood loss and the production of too few RBCs due to disorders, such as lack of vitality.—APP

KHYBER AGENCY: MNA Nasir Khan Afridi distributing school bags among the deserving students during ceremony arranged by Shahid Afridi Foundation.


300 wheat bags filled with sand discovered Wheat worth millions of rupees spoiled due to Food Department negligence MANSOOR PIRZADA G HOTKI —Assistant Commissioner Mirpur Mathelo and mukhtiarkar raided at wheat godown near Mirpur Mathelo – Ghotki and found 300 bags filled with sand. According to reports, deputy commissioner Ghotki Ahmed Ali Qureshi had a tip off and directed assistant commissioner Zeeshan Shabbir and mukhtiarkar Qurban Ali Mirani for the raid at government’s wheat godown. Assistant commissioner revealed that the staff of food department at wheat godown was involved in selling fresh wheat at private flour mills after replacing with sand bags. Each bag contained 100kg; around 300 bags of sand were handed over to police later, however staff at godown successfully fled from the scene. Labourers at godown told to the AC that food inspector Wishan Das and Munwar Mirani inspect the wheat bags and order the labourers to replace the wheat bags. Simultaneously, a large numbers of wheat stock

20 lawyers booked for torturing doctors FAISALABAD—City Sammundri police have booked 20 lawyers on the charge of torturing doctors of Tehsil Headquarters Hospital Sammundri. A spokesman of the police department said here that Dr. Saeed Ashraf Wahla of THQ Hospital Sammundri moved a complaint to City Sammundri police station and contended that Advocate Ahmad Raza Kharal and his accomplices tortured doctors and other staff of the THQ Hospital Sammundri when the accused were refused to issue a fake medical examination certificate. On this complaint, the City Sammundri police have registered a case against 20 persons including Rae Ahmad Raza Kharal Advocate under sections 369/186, 149 and 337 of Pakistan Penal Code (PPC) and started investigation.However, no arrest was made in this regard, the spokesman added. Additional district and sessions judge Sammundri Ch Muhammad Iqbal Goraya has ordered registration of a case against the doctors and other staff of THQ Hospital Sammundri on charge of torturing lawyers. The court issued orders on a petition filed by the lawyers. However, no case has so far been registered till the filing of this report. Meanwhile, Doctors and paramedical staff of Allied Hospital staged a protest demonstration against the torture of their colleagues in Tehsil Headquarters Hospital Sammundri by lawyers.—APP

around 8000 to 9000 bags of wheat are being spoiled due to negligence of food de-

by insects near railway station Daharki godown. Officials at Daharki godown

Sindh by conducting antiinsects spray. During the reporting at site,

rupees was left under open sky. Furthermore, it is worthwhile to mention that Ghotki

Complainants appreciate KP C&RC performance P ESHAWA R —Actions on the timely redressal of public complaints being received in the Complaints and Redressal Cell (C&RC) at Chief Minister Secretariat Peshawar are in full swing. Similarly people from different walks of life especially the complainants have highly appreciated the performance of the cell through their telephone calls, emails and letters. They have termed the establishment of the cell as a good step of the present provincial government and highly beneficial for the timely solution of public issues saying that they could get their issues solved through a simple telephone calls to the cell by sitting at home. According to official sources, a large number of people from various walks of life registered hundreds of complaints, which the cell took up with the concerned departments and directed the authorities for immediate steps to redress it; and as a result, all those complaints were disposed off accordingly. According to details, a resident of Bannu, Faheemullah registered a com-

plaint against a corrupt official of Bannu Development Authority, which was refferred to the high ups of BDA with the directives for necessary action. Accordingly, legal action was taken against the official and the bills and security amount of the complainant were released. One Muhammad Nawaz of Abbottabad made a complaint of over billing by PESCO. The matter was forwarded to PESCO Abbottabad Division for investigation and subsequently the PESCO office submitted report to the cell that excessive units were wrongly sent to the consumer and the excessive amount was thus refunded to him. Similarly, on the complaint of one Dr. Akhtar Zaman of Lakki Marwat about the nonavailability of clean drinking water in his residential area, the cell took up the issue with Public Health Engineering department and the issue was thus resolved. Mst. Khial Bibi of Mardan complained that her husband was killed in a bomb blast and she was not being paid the compensation announced by the provincial government. —APP

Dry, cold weather to prevail partment officials at Daharki. Wheat stocks of million of rupees have been infested

had never bothered to avoid million of rupees of loss of the food department

no food department official was present at the godown, wheat worth of million of

PPP will continue to support Govt peace efforts: Kaira BASHIR AHMAD REHMANI H AFIZABAD —Central Leader of Pakistan Peoples Party and former Federal Minister for Information Ch. Qamar-uz-Zaman Kaira has declared that his party was willing to eliminate terrorism and extremism in the country and assured that it would continue to support the government efforts for ensuring peaceful condition in the country for its stability. While talking the local media Sunday, He, however, expressed his reservation over the formulation of the negotiation committee for peace and ceasefire with the Taliban. He particularly referred to Major (r) Aamir in the committee, who, he said, is notorious for his anti-democracy stance. He said that his party would support the present government for the continuation

of democratic system in the country. He however, was pessimistic over the outcome of the present peaceful parleys with the Taliban. He further said that there were several banned religious and extremist parties but regretted that some of the Ministers of ruling party were supporting them, which is deplorable.He said that PPP believed in the fair trial of former dictator General (r) Pervaiz Musharraf and threatened if his trial was not made on merit, the activists of PPP would stage demonstration in front of the Courts. He said that the PML-N government came to power with the promises to bring down the prices of essential commodities, improve provision of sui gas and power supply but it has so far failed to fulfill any of its promises.

HYDERABAD: Students posing in an environment of village culture of provinces of Pakistan during a mela organized by a local school.

is the hometown of Sindh Food Minister Jam Mehtab Hussain Dahar.

Second phase of Sehat ka Insaf completes P ESHAWA R —The second phase of “Justice for Health” completed on Sunday in 60 union councils of Peshawar, capital of Khyber Pakhutnkhwa. During the campaign, over 0.5million children were inoculated against nine deadly diseases including polio. The health campaign was launched by provincial health minister Shaukat Yousafzai in Ludma area of Peshawar. The KPK minister administered polio drops to a child during the launching ceremony. Around 50 families in the same union council refused to get their children vaccinated. Shaukat Yousafzai said it was one of the first healthcare reforms ever initiated in Pakistan against nine deadly diseases. Around 5,000 PTI volunteers along with lady health workers, teachers and security guards participated in the campaign The campaign aims to inoculate around 754,000 children and will continue for three months. Meanwhile, strict security measures were ensured to avoid any untoward incident. It is important to mention that polio workers had been targeted across the country including Peshawar and Karachi. Pakistan is one of only three countries in the world where polio is still endemic, but efforts to stamp out the crippling disease have been hit by repeated attacks on health teams.—Online

ISLAMABAD —The Meteorological Department predicted mainly cold and dry weather in most parts of the country and partly cloudy condition in most parts of Gilgit Baltistan during next 24 hours. The weather condition is associated with continental air prevailing over most parts of the country. A temperature of —14C was recorded in Kalam while Astore, Malamjabba, Skardu, Drosh, Dir, and Parachina remained on with -110C, -60C, -50C, -50C, -50C and -130C respectively. 14 percent per m3 pollen count was recorded by the met office. Meanwhile, it is also reported that the snowfall in Murree and surrounding hills on Thursday has attracted a large number of tourists from different parts of the country. Although there were no vacations, but still a large number of people specially from urban areas of Punjab and Karachi travelled to Murree to enjoy the snowfall. Traffic jams were witnessed at various places on the road leading to the hilly station. The resorts including Bhurban, New

Murree, Kashmir Point, Pindi Point, Mall Road and Ayubia were packed with tourists. Galyaat, Hazara and Bhurbhan, received more snow as compared to Murree city. All restaurants were packed with tourists and the demand of woollies, has also gone up as mercury has gone below freezing point. A great rush was observed at hotels and place for eatables, people were enjoying hot food and hot drinks to keep themselves warm. Businessmen and shopkeepers of hilly resorts were happy in view of increased business activity. Sameer Ali, a visitor from Lahore while talking to APP said, Murree had all facilities for enjoyment. “I am here today with my family and enjoying this awesome weather”, he added.—APP

PML-N put country on way to progress: Asif S IALKOT —Federal Minister for Water, Power and Defence Khawaja Muhammad Asif has said the PML-N has successfully put the country on way to progress and prosperity. He said this while addressing people on an inaugural ceremony of newly-established water turbine and reconstruction of old building of Government Girls Primary School Muzaffarpur near here Sunday. He added that the PML-N government was implementing on several revolutionary steps to steer the country out of persisting energy crisis besides tackling internal and external issues amicably in the larger national interests. The minister said the present government was committed to weed out terrorism from the country in an active cooperation of the masses. Khawaja Asif said the government was also strengthening the national institutions through promoting democracy as there was rule of law in the country. He said now the PML-N was the guardian of democracy in the country and was striving for the rights of the masses. He added that the PML -N government was striving to cope with the energy crisis for giving maximum relief to the people. Earlier, he listened to problems of the masses during an open court held at his residence in Sialkot Cantt. Development work on Head Marla Hydro Power Project is in full swing and it would be completed at estimated cost of Rs.3049.74

million. Official sources told APP here Sunday the pace of development work on the construction of spillway and power house had been further accelerated and hopefully the spillway would be completed in April this year. The experts of a Chinese firm “SINOTEC” are supervising the development work of the project. Sources further said, Kaplan type turbines of 4X2 would be installed to generate electricity and after completion this power project will generate 7.64 megawatt electricity. Besides, the construction of two dams on Upper Chenab Canal had already been completed and this Hydro Power Project after completion will generate 50.50 Geggawatt hours (GWh) electricity per year sources added. Power consumers are likely to get relief this year as 3,367 mw power is set to be added in the national grid, said an official of Ministry of Water and Power. Talking to APP, he said 186 mw hydel power would be added in the system after completion of 130 mw capacity Duber Khawar, 17 mw capacity Gomal Dam, 17 mw Satpara and 22 mw capacity Jabban Hydro Power Project this year. Yet other 3,181 mw power would be added in the system this year including 425 mw power through Nandidipur Power Project, 525 mw Chichoki Mallian, 750 mw Guddu, 320mw UAE gifted Power Plant at Faisalabad, 496 mw Lower Spatgah and 665 mw Lower Palas Valley.—APP

Technical team to assess Pakistan’s membership for CERN I SLAMABAD —A four-member high powered Technical Team (CTT) led by CERN Director for Research and Scientific Computing Dr Sergio Bertolucci will visit Pakistan from February 10 to 14 as part of the evaluation process for the Associate Membership (AM) of CERN for Pakistan. A spokesman for Pakistan Atomic Energy Commission (PAEC) Dr Shahid Riaz Khan on Sunday said Pakistan fulfills all the criteria for becoming a CERN Associate Member and the industrial base and experience of high precision manufacturing enables it to make significant contributions to the CERN programme. He said there are numerous benefits if Pakistan becomes Associate Member of CERN such as increased number of engineering contracts to support CERN programs which will be beneficial for industrial sector, human resource development and technology transfer in key areas of radiofrequency (RF) technology, ion beam optics, cryogenics. The intellectual benefits are numerous and the scientific approach would increase manifolds.

Various applications of particle accelerators are cancer treatment, sustainable and cleaner source of energy, disposal of nuclear waste, improved materials such as polymers, implantation of ions in semiconductors, or date archaeological findings. The application from Pakistan for the membership was submitted in February 2013. CTT will assess and evaluate the scientific activities being undertaken in Pakistan. The technical team will also visit universities, scientific organizations and industrial complexes in the country. The Spokesman said it is a matter of great honour and pride for all of that Pakistan has very cordial relation with the European Organization for Nuclear Research (CERN) located in Geneva, Switzerland. CERN is a world leading scientific organization which has been conducting research on High Energy Particle Physics since its inception in 1954. The CERN members include 20 European countries. Recently, Israel has been accorded its membership. There are three associate members and five observer states including India. Pakistan has a long history of collaboration with CERN that be-

gan with the signing of a Cooperation Agreement in 1994. A Protocol for collaboration was signed in 1997, jointly between Pakistan Atomic Energy Commission (PAEC), National Centre for Physics (NCP), Islamabad and CERN. Pakistan supplied 8 Magnet Supports to the CMS detector. These magnet Supports were manufactured at the Heavy Mechanical Complex-3 (HMC-3). The Magnet Supports were meant to hold up the main structure (main magnet) weighing 4 times the weight of Boeing 747. These supports were delivered to CERN in the year 2000. A number of other projects were also undertaken by Pakistani scientists and engineers, prominent among these projects were the supply of 320 Resistive Plate Chambers (RPCs) for the Compact Muon Solenoid (CMS) detector. In 2006, the then President of Pakistan visited CERN and announced an additional contribution of 5 million CHF for the CERN scientific programme. This contribution has been used in several areas, including the building of YE4 shielding wall for CMS, front-end electronics for RPCs, support for students and scientists working with CMS, con-

tribution to the maintenance and operation of CMS detector, Grid computing, SPL, CLIC and ALICE experiments. In 2006, HMC-3 received the ATLAS award for best industrial partner. In 2012, Chairman PAEC and DG CERN signed another important agreement for Pakistan’s contribution towards LHC Consolidation Programme. According to this agreement, a team of Pakistani engineers and technicians will work during the long shutdown in 2013 and 2014 and will cut 10,170 points and weld them back with high quality and precision. The consolidation team will be paid by CERN. The collaboration with CERN is not limited to scientific organizations such as PAEC and NCP. In 2012, COMSATS Institute of Information Technology (CIIT) became a full member of ALICE collaboration and a computation grid was established at CIIT. So far, around 120 scientists, engineers and students have visited CERN, whereas around 50 scientists and engineers have visited Pakistan from CERN. Until 2010 the CERN Membership was exclusively restricted to European countries. However, it is now open to non-European

States as well. To raise the collaboration level between Pakistan and CERN, Pakistan has recently applied for the Associate Membership of CERN. Dr. Abdus Salam got Physics Nobel Prize in 1979 on presenting a theory that resulted in combining weak and electromagnetic forces. Recently, Francois Englert from Belgium and Peter Higgs from UK have been jointly awarded the Nobel Prize in Physics for 2013 for the discovery of ‘Higgs Boson’, the so called ‘God particle’. The prize winning theory is central part of the Standard Model of particle physics that discusses how fundamental forces can be combined into a single unified force. Both the theories were proved using the accelerators at CERN. The name CERN is derived from the acronym for the French “Conseil Européen pour la Recherche Nucléaire”, or European Council for Nuclear Research, a provisional body founded in 1952 with the mandate of establishing a worldclass fundamental physics research organization in Europe.—APP

KHYBER AGENCY: Doctors examining the patients during free medical camp organized by Mobile Hospital FATA Directorate of Health.


Nawaz sounds more optimistic

MEDIA WATCH

Politics of showmanship

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RIME Minister Nawaz Sharif has always been an optimist yet during the last few weeks he has started sounding more posi tive. His statements are inspiring confidence among people of Pakistan that present Government has the capacity and capability to deliver as per their expectations. In line with this approach, the Prime Minister, during FPCCI’s Exports Awards ceremony in Lahore on Saturday, made a categorical statement with regard to overcoming the crippling energy shortages especially gas crisis. He expressed confidence that gas shortages would be over in 12 to 15 months, which clearly mean the problem would mitigate in next winter and woes of people and other sectors of the economy would end by June 2015. Similar optimism is being expressed by Minister for Petroleum and Natural Resources Shahid Khaqan Abbasi, who has been telling media that much-talked-about LNG would start arriving in Pakistan from November this year and as a result the situation would ease considerably. All this, coupled with a number of projects being executed to produce electricity through different sources, would surely put economy on right track and difficulties of the people in respect of energy would also be addressed. Though at the moment there is not much on ground to celebrate despite a lapse of nine months but the kind of problems inherited by present Government demand that the nation should demonstrate necessary patience and allow Government to turn its pledges and plans into reality. The Government definitely has an ambitious agenda as is visible by unfolding of projects like economic corridor, Lahore-Karachi Motorway, other motorways and highways, metro bus projects, expansion of railway network, construction of more airports and seaports, setting up of huge nuclear power plants and building of water reservoirs. A number of agreements for cooperation in different sectors have also been signed with focus on China and Turkey, which have track record of implementing projects within stipulated time and original cost. All this augurs well for economy of the country and well being of the people and we hope that the Prime Minister would continue to take personal interest in each and every project so that hindrances and hiccups are removed promptly and they materialise at the earliest.

Butchery of children in Afghanistan K

ILLING of innocent people in wars is certainly lamentable and a cause to worry for the mankind but it is more so in the case of death of children in war zones. The instances of killing of children in conflict areas are increasing and the global society should feel ashamed of this phenomenon in the 21st century, when there is more focus on human rights, women rights and rights of children. According to a UN report, the number of children killed and wounded in Afghanistan’s war jumped by 34 percent last year. It points to awful reality that most women and children were killed and injured in their daily lives – at home, on their way to school, working in the fields or travelling to a social event. As per report, 561 children were killed and 1,195 were wounded out of total of 2,959 civilians killed in the war and 5,656 wounded last year. But regrettably, focus of the report is more on violence by Taliban instead of reckless bombing, shelling and drone strikes by the United States that are responsible for heavy civilians deaths in the occupied country. There have been numerous instances of aerial strikes against marriage ceremonies, funerals, gathering of people for social purposes, bazaars and even religious places. Though accurate data is not available but close to reality estimates show thousands of children have lost their lives and many more handicapped for life due to war in Afghanistan. And same is the situation in Iraq where carpet bombing destroyed not only infrastructure and economic interests of the nation but also killed and wounded children and women. All this is being done by those who claim to be champions of human rights and are issuing scores of reports every year about state of children in different parts of the globe. The United Nations and human rights bodies should take notice of the situation and take measures to safeguard lives of innocent people as their killing is also sparking more resentment and violence.

India moves closer to permanent berth at UNSC C

RICKET, which has become a sort of addiction for most of the global community, received a serious setback when despite severe opposition by some countries, the International Cricket Council (ICC) approved wide-ranging changes to its structure on Saturday, putting India, besides England and Australia, in firm control of the world game and with it most of the money, through self-serving commercial rights. There is nothing unusual in England getting permanent berth at the ICC as it is considered mother of the game and similarly Autralia too has contributed significantly to promotion of the game but this absolutely not true in case of India. Pakistan, Sri Lanka and New Zealand had more credentials to get a permanent seat at the ICC than India yet in the world of today it is influence, lobbying and money that matter. India’s gate-crashing into ICC is beginning of an end to an era of merit and fairplay as the country is known for pursuing jaundiced policies. It has a track record of using cricket as political tool and it is widely apprehended that New Delhi would apply these tactics misusing its newly gained status at the ICC to the disadvantage of other countries especially Pakistan, Bangladesh and Sri Lanka. India has cleverly manipulated this position and it is also slowly and gradually moving towards its dream goal of becoming permanent member of the UN Security Council as well. There is absolutely nothing wrong if something is achieved on merit but the worst part of the entire episode is that India is constantly committing crimes against humanity in Occupied Kashmir, dishonouring UN resolution and butchering Muslims and other minorities but still vying for prized positions.

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Tipping point against them. These are not of Muhammad Ali Ehsan names Taliban’s these Email: muhammadaliehsan1@hotmail.com are names of responsible people who repHE nation was stunned. resent this country. A country the What was going through the sons of which are sacrificing their mind of the TTP Central lives fighting against this outlawed Council and the minds of its 16 terrorist organization. We need not members that constitute it? Were appreciate these nominees for atthey joking? By nominating the tempting to patch up relationship leadership of Pakistan’s right wing between the government and the parties and the religious clerics as Taliban’s. They deserve our appretheir representatives the leadership ciation only if they take up the of Taliban’s have one - dodged the moral and upright position to say media spotlight by maintaining a no to the Taliban’s offer of represtandoff distance between their senting them. If someone has to sit movement and the government on the negotiations table to talk to and two - virtually ensured that the the government it is Taliban’s already stalled peace process themselves – ‘unarmed having first moves forward only on a slow given up violence as an instrument track. If nothing such tactics in the of their policy’. immediate context will considerWe all know that the talking ably reduce the incentive of the points are predictable and in some State to resort to a military opera- cases are even non negotiable. So tion against them. why negotiate? Taliban’s want us Under the ‘ethics rules’ all to see the world from their point of ‘special envoys’ being appointed view. Are we prepared to do that? by the Taliban’s to represent them They despise and disdain the basic in talks with the government must principles of democracy and the decline to accept this offer. Those very constitution of Pakistan. They who have shown the readiness to lecture us in how to conduct our represent them have only shown domestic and international affairs? the willingness to represent the Morally and ethically Taliban’s enemy of the state that has mur- carry an enormous negative bagdered and killed thousands of our gage not only in Pakistan but innocent civilians and soldiers. Let around the world only because over there be no doubt that these nomi- the years they have allowed their nations are well deliberated. guns to do the talking. Not many Taliban’s know that the deeply people are sure that they even have polarized ‘political fragmentation’ the rational mind that can only talk. in Pakistan’s polity is a major ob- We know it fights and fights or stacle in the formulation of a clear fights and talks but can it only just cut policy of military operation talk? Two realities we need to keep

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in mind when negotiating with the Taliban’s. One - It is not a large state to state conflict that we seek to prevent. It’s a state against an enemy that is part of an outlawed movement residing within and across a porous border. 160,000 men of our regular Armed Forces are deployed fighting this enemy. All we have done in the last decade or so is to tell them that ‘the use of force should be last resort after all

A wastage of time and a false belief that we have still not reached the tipping point in this war that we fight. Ask me - the military knows it already. Its the civilian leadership that is hiding its biting teeth. But for how long? measures have failed’. The military force on ground has been questioning the long time ‘these measures’ are taking . Not sure which strategy the leaders want to follow? A strategy of fighting the Talibans or a strategy of pacifying the Taliban’s? The need to negotiate with the ‘source of threat’ is not a soldiers need sent on the battlefield to fight. It is a political need of a indecisive civil-military leadership that has only perpetuated the polarization of views on the need to fight. The big question today is - Are negotiations

and renegotiations with Taliban’s causing the war against terror to only stalemate? Taliban’s demonstrate lack of seriousness, urgency and concern in how they approach the dialogue process. This results in two kinds of discontinuities. First - discontinuity in the peace process which has no negative effect on their movement. They continue to promote Islamic fundamentalism as a concept that seeks total islamization of Pakistan. Second – discontinuity in the military operations being carried out by the Pakistan army. This has serious implications for the morale of the soldiers deployed to fight and who are putting their lives on the line. They are in the harm’s way for a very long time now and only because the government believes that they should be there. It virtually spelled out their missionwhich calls them to fight. Instead of wasting time in forming the dialogue committees and groups the government should plainly ask the Taliban’s to spell out their demands and the specific actions they want the state to take? I am sure those will not be demands that the government will agree with or actions that the State would be able to take. A wastage of time and a false belief that we have still not reached the tipping point in this war that we fight. Ask me - the military knows it already. Its the civilian leadership that is hiding its biting teeth. But for how long? — The writer, a retd Lt Col, is doing PhD in civil-military relations from Karachi University.

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Indo-Pak CBMs Dr Muhammad Khan Email: drmk_edu@yahoo.com

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ONFIDENCE building mea sures (CBMs) are meant to reduce the element of uncertainty and fright among the parties to a dispute or conflict. CBMs, thus gives confidence that, the opponent(s) are not going to behave unpredictably and in an aggressive manner. Through CBMs, the behaviours of the parties become more predictable and away from suspicions. In the conflict ridden regions, where there have been wars and conflicts in the past, “CBMs are agreements meant to give each party assurance that the other is not preparing for surprise military action or pursuing policies associated with such future actions.” Although, CBMs does not end the chances of any conflict or war forever, however, these measures provides transitory respite from the looming threat apprehensions and decrease the sense of insecurity, particularly to the weaker side. CBMs limit the escalation by building trust and confidence and by removing the element of misunderstanding. With respect to the CBMs, the Indo-Pak Subcontinent has been atypical. Despite taking a number of CBMs, ever since their independence, there have been three major wars and a conflict (Kargil), besides many minors skirmishes along the Line of Control in Kashmir. In the process of an unending arms race, both rivals armed themselves with the nuclear weapons, yet there remain the looming threats of military escalations, as witnessed during major military mobilization in 2001/02. Indeed, Indo-Pak history is marred with revulsion, mistrust and hostility. Historically, the Indo-Pak independence was

marked by the beginning of the cold war. Having been placed in opposite ideological blocks, India and Pakistan remained hostile to each other over numerous issues, indeed, one being the most critical but unresolved issues of contemporary international relations. The perpetual divergences between India and Pakistan have many implications, which are not only local in nature but their prolonged continuance also has regional and global repercussions. The leading inference being that, South Asia could not be integrated as a region, politically as well as economically. The development of antagonistic cultures in both states is visible at the political as well as societal levels. In both countries, the young generation is taught this culture at the academic level. The historical heroes of one another are portrayed as usurpers and malevolent. In some cases history is distorted and redrawn in favour of each other’s strategic culture. A graver problem is the covert quasi-alliance that “hawks” on both sides establish by thriving on each other’s prejudices. This has an impact on domestic politics, in that the objective, value neutral, apolitical commentary by hardliners reinforces-if only unwittingly reactionary forces in polity. This can be witnessed on both sides of the border. This is a situation created by the application of action-reaction phenomenon. When one state develops its military component of national power, though not specifically for a particular country, the concerned state tends to respond in similar terms. In the case of India and Pakistan, India has always taken the lead and prompted Pakistan to engage in an arms race. During the cold war, although US supported Pakistan as an ally, but evidence suggests that it also extended military and economic support to India as well. According to the author, Wayne C.

Mc Williams Harry Piotrowski, The World Since 1945, “Both sides had been fortified with modern weapons purchased mainly from the United States. US built jet fighters battled each other- some bearing Pakistani insignia and flown by Pakistani pilots, the others bearing Indian insignia and flown by Indian Pilots. On the disputes like Siachin Glacier, Pakistan roughly spends “Rs15 million a day and India spends Rs 50 million a day for maintaining their militaries in that war zone. Unlike EU and ASEAN, the only regional organization, SAARC, has not been able to harmonize the region; politically as well as economically. The major reason behind SAARC’s failure is one of the principles of this organization is that, bilateral and contentious issues are not allowed to be discussed. The better part has been that, despite nuisances, there have been negotiations and peace talks between officials, at ministerial level and even at the level of top leadership to shed away the environment of distrust between key neighbours of South Asia. These talks even continued during the period of extreme tension between both countries as track-2 diplomacy. During last few years, there have been some very positive developments between two countries in almost all spheres; political, economic and at the level of people to people. Indeed, under the changed environment of interdependence and with pre-eminence of soft power; social constructivism and liberalism in the international politics, there is realization among the South Asian neighbours to shed away the differences and move forward. Indeed, in the renewed peace process, both countries have resorted to a gradual approach, thus remained guarded to talk loudly on the core issue(s). Political analysts feel that peripheral issues of less significance remained the focus of discussions,

HOWMANSHIP, of course, is not new in politics. The US elections are deemed colourful for the candidate faceoffs, where rhetoric — empty or not — wins hearts first, and then votes. Over the past decade or so, India has largely lacked the strong sense of excitement generated by the great statesmen who had once walked the country. The two predominant parties— the Congress and Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) — have often struggled to present their ‘prime ministerial candidates’ — those leaders who will lead bandwagon, while also finding widespread appeal across country. This year, despite the emergence of the Aam Aadmi Party, which claims to stand for the aspirations of the common man, and the polarisation caused by the regional parties, the national political scene is largely a two-way battle. Although the Congress has not emphatically put forth Rahul Gandhi as their key man for the post of prime minister, the war of words and wit is now being waged between the Gandhi family’s young scion and Narendra Modi, the BJP leader, who has emerged as a strong force to reckon with. However, what is new to the political scene is the impact of television — as a game changer in deciding the validity of the prime minister candidate. Rahul Gandhi dared to face up to the challenge, and gained mixed response, with some convinced he is ‘genuine’ while others taking potshots at his gullibility. Modi is yet to take up the challenge of addressing tough questions one-on-one before a nation-wide TV audience, but has strong oratory skills that come in handy during election time. Ultimately, none of this showbiz might matter, even though both parties are having their images refurbished, apparently by professional public relations agencies. In the din, what is being lost is real debate about real issues that must take centre stage during any political contest. Other than populist measures that are professed with relish, today’s real concerns faced by the people are being glossed over, and the ghosts of the past brought out once again only for easy political mileage. As an economy that holds immense potential but finds its fortunes flagging often due to poor or lack of governance, every election is an opportunity for the nation to bury petty differences and put real development as the core agenda. But that, sadly, is never the way India’s political parties operate. So let us brace for more PR gimmickry than messages from the heart over the next few months. — Khaleej Times

while making promises only on the core issues. Definitely, resolution of core issues needs a change in mindsets, thus would take time. But certainly, there is a need to understand that the peace process has been derailed many a time owing to the unresolved nature of the core issues between India and Pakistan. Indeed, over the years, maintaining a status-quo on these issues produced many other issues, which have now attained their separate identities and significance. In the presence of unresolved core issues, non-state actors would repeatedly find opportunities of spoiling the trust between both states. As a result, the nuclear rivals would again turn to the mobilization of troops, risking nuclear disaster. For a durable peace and stability of the Subcontinent, there is a need that, the leadership of India and Pakistan realistically visualizes the future of the region and accepts the ground realities through an optimistic mindset. Embarking upon the path of promoting trade and commerce, alongside making headway for the durable solution of core political issues and bridging the trust deficit is the best way forward. Therefore, India and Pakistan must continue talking to each other, remain engaged in negotiations, do not react to sporadic incidents and actions of Non Sate Actors, take all measures for the promotion of peace and tranquillity, initiate more CBMs and develop their economies to eradicate poverty widespread among their masses. This is only possible by giving peace a chance, ending antagonism by bringing concord among the leadership and people of two countries. This process would provide opportunities for enhance economic development and social integration in the Subcontinent. — The writer is Islamabad-based IR analyst.

Time to switch-off for better health

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UR inadvertent over-reli ance on technology, espe cially smart phones and tablets to keep abreast of news, work and simply to stay connected to our friends and relatives, is taking a toll on our health. But before we go blaming these modern age gadgets, we need to indulge in some introspection and question our own habits. According to medical experts, it is the excessive use of smart phones and tablets that is affecting our sleeping patterns by fooling our body clock to assume it’s daytime. This could lead to obesity, diabetes and cardiovascular diseases. Lack of sufficient rest for the body to recuperate, which occurs best when we are in deep sleep, triggers unhealthy eating habits and fatigue. As a result of constantly turning to our devices to check the latest updates we are clearly heading towards a health disaster. It is even more dangerous for children as insufficient sleep can prevent the secretion of a growth hormone at night. Maybe it is time we switch off our gadgets and restrict children to use computers and mobiles only for limited duration well before bedtime. — Gulf News Difficulties break some men but make others. No axe is sharp enough to cut the soul of a sinner who keeps on trying, one armed with the hope that he will rise even in the end. —Nelson Mandela S African statesman


Economy: Dangerous developments Voice of the People stitutions are lying and forging statistics so as to hide the dire of our economy until Ali Ashraf Khan condition the day when the whole thing Email:balti1551@gmail.com will implode. Dr. Ashfaq Hasan Khan has in his write-up pointed the finger at such things HE Senate of Pakistan Stand like the mysterious surge of ing Committee on Water and Pakistan’s export by 27% in DecemPower recently recommended ber 2013 while it had declined in the a third party audit of them in order to month before by 9% and other probinvestigate payment made to IPP’s lems with concealing the real balance where a difference is noticed in fig- of payment. And an even more frightures of State Bank and Ministry of ening problem is the role that audiWater & Power. A lefty amount was tors and accountants have been playgiven in the first days of PML(N) rule ing. As a matter of fact all controlin the name of circular debt as alle- ling and auditing institutions includgations have surfaced that party and ing the National Accountability Bupersonal favorites have been doled reau have deteriorated to a level out this money from kitty of poor where no real control or accountabilstate suffering from the previous ity is possible, plea bargaining has grabbing rule of the PPP. But it seems been given cover of law meaning that that the new rulers are not so differ- “Rishwet laiker Ander Ja. Aur ent from the previous ones only they Rishwet deyker Baher Aa”. seem to loot what the PPP did in five This does not augur well for Senyears in less than one year. In order ate Standing Committee’s third party to do that Pakistan State Bank is audit demand keeping in mind this asked to print money and it might be state of affair. Present economic and not a coincident that Governor State financial tragedies have taken place Bank recently has stepped down. when Auditors have colluded with Corruption and misappropriation management to fabricate a shady balof government funds have become a ance sheet of public sector organizacommon problem in Pakistan. Many tions. Habib Bank’s balance sheet was examples are in our mind such as found having serious discrepancies PIA, Steel Mills, Pakistan Railways when inflated profit was shown before and others. And the problem is not of privatization but strangely the bank recent origin but has a decades’ long was later privatized for Rs. 22 billion history as the contracts signed with in 2002 when its assets value was the IPPs many years ago vividly show twenty times more than that and manthat seeds of corruption were sown agement was handed over to AKFED from day one by inserting 60% ca- nominee against peanuts while its anpacity payment binding on govern- nual net profit ranged between 13 to ment. But this is not all. Our state in- 15 billion rupees. One very strong and

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progressive DFI, NDFC was liquidated without any recourse to people due to palace corruption. In all the tragedies of our financial situation auditors and accountants have a definite role because they have become active partners of the corrupt system. When Ziaul Haq was throwing away state controlled units for peanuts to ex-owners, the basis of evaluation of its sale value was through selected government auditors and in special cases this was violated when an idea called ‘Joint Audit’ was accepted which led to influencing valuation of units assets through joint audit in which one auditor was representing the government and the other prospective buyer who pumped money to influence others in valuation to their desired target. Lot of hue and cry was heard then. Now this has exposed that prospective panel of government auditors have former links and connections with a particular lobby as long back as the 1980s. As a result of this capital is running away from Pakistan – our own Pakistani money as well as foreign investment. So many of our moneyed elite have left the country together with their money that the elite clubs in Karachi are observing a decline in club membership and in business accordingly that is threatening their existence. Foreign management of Sheraton Hotel, Karachi has quietly changed hands and a Pakistani company known as Movenpick has become its new owners, PTCL and KESC are another living example of high level corruption going unnoticed for last many years. On the other

hand, several multinational companies have exited Pakistan in last few years. For example, Singapore Telecom, British Petroleum, Chevron, AES Corporation, GDF Suez, and the Royal Bank of Scotland (RBS) have already left Pakistan and HSBC and Noor Investment are in process of leaving the country. To restore economic atmosphere honestly leaders of both PPP and PML (N) should first bring back their foreign deposited and invested money and invest in motherland. Then inculcate merit in every walk of life to begin with, posts have to be filled with people deserving and qualified and not with the ones that are loyal to their masters. Only by breaking this routine things can improve. Ban all kinds of youth loans, income support programmes and stimulus financial packages that were found plundering of national wealth in the past also. Going against the corrupt mainstream needs a lot of personal bravery and sacrifice. Allocate this money for promotion of education, health services and community development schemes and monitor them under transparent rules. But if such people are not coming forward then the promised ‘change’ will not come. Since the elections that had been fought under the slogan of ‘change’ by various parties including the ruling one nothing much has happened, especially not in the economic field. If this doesn’t change soon, it might be too late. —The writer is Karachi-based senior columnist.

Rising food adulteration Taj Nabi Email: tnkhan672@gmail.com

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ITH all other odds and sorry affairs of state, one of the challenging and rising issues that the country has been facing is the moral decline of businessmen in terms of compromising on declining standard of almost all sale products and edibles for focusing more on minting money than the public health. Both the concerned authorities and the businessmen could equally be held responsible for the ever declining standard of commodities: Firstly, the poor monitoring system of the government in maintaining standard has provided a safe haven for the profiteers to use all short-comings and adulteration in edibles. Secondly, on the part of the businessmen, there seems

a moral decline as these people who on one hand consider the concept of ‘adulteration haram’ (religiously forbidden). However, on the other, they use all novel techniques of adulteration for persuading the costumers to buy their products. The profiteers are very often misusing the opportunity to meet the ever-increasing demands of the edibles and other products of the overgrowing population by violating the food related laws and rules for maintaining hygienic condition in preparation of food and other commercial products. This makes the consumers deprived of their very basic rights of access to clean and standard food and good quality of other sale products. The unhygienic conditions and poor standards of food are usually considered hazardous for human body and health. The food poisoning cases, which recently reported more than ever before in the country, had

exposed people to illness and a number of new and complicated diseases. Food poisoning refers to a wide variety of diseases which are usually caused by eating contaminated food. Likewise, the two the main contributing factors for food poisoning are poor handling of food and its unhygienic preparation. As most of the workers in the restaurants, mills and industries (related to edibles), do not care about cleanliness, as a result, they infect food either with their hands or tools. Most of the restaurants continue to serve substandard and unhygienic food in the country as they neither comply with food laws nor with hygiene rules. However, one wonders, either they are not feeling comfortable to follow the laws and rules, or lacking awareness to uphold it. But one thing is for sure that they are deliberately charging the customers more than the fixed rates. Similarly,

the lack of knowledge on the part of food handlers also exposes the public to food-borne diseases. The issue can also be combated more by spreading awareness than by treatment. And, in this regard, the government can launch awareness campaigns through media and other means about food born-diseases targeting both the costumers and people at domestic level. Moreover, the authorities concerned need to play a more vigilant role due to the rising cases of food poisoning and health issues by inspecting the food outlets regularly and taking stern action against the violators. They should ensure implementation of the existing laws besides announcing and formulating new rules to meet the challenge of deteriorating hygienic conditions of food besides dealing with the outlaws with an iron hand. —The writer is Islamabad-based freelance columnist.

Views From Abroad

The man in the arena David Ignatius

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ECRETARY of State John Kerry was trying to choose his words carefully in talking about his negotiations for a comprehensive nuclear deal with Iran and a “framework agreement” between Israelis and Palestinians. As recent experience has shown, one loose statement from Kerry — say, about the risk of a boycott of Israel if the peace talks fail — can mean days of damage control. But Kerry isn’t very good at dissembling, and he answered some questions even after saying he shouldn’t. It was an example of an impetuosity that has propelled him across diplomatic minefields many thought were impassable. Kerry may yet stumble, but he’s clearly enjoying his hour as “the man in the arena,” in Theodore Roosevelt’s phrase. Kerry began our interview by explaining that as part of his IsraeliPalestinian framework, he wants to allow each side to express its reservations about the US-drafted parameters. This opportunity for dissent has been a controversial subject in the private talks, with some negotiators

on both sides arguing that it’s a mistake to allow any such wiggle room. But Kerry disagrees. He argues that for Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas, such caveats are “the only way for them to politically be able to keep the negotiations moving . . .. For them as leaders to be able to embrace an endgame, they need to have the right to be able to have some objection.” Kerry is peeved about the political furore provoked by his statement last weekend in Munich about the possibility of future boycotts of Israel if the talks collapse. He says the statement was “taken out of context” by critics who overlooked his career-long record of support for the Jewish state. He added pointedly: “There are those who do not want a two-state solution, who don’t believe in it. There are those who don’t want to stop settling certain parts of the region.” Kerry fences when asked about Abbas’s recent statements that he would allow a phased withdrawal of Israeli troops over five years and accept NATO troops as a buffer after the Israelis leave. “Netanyahu has made it clear he doesn’t want NATO,” Kerry says, but a possible

third-party force “is something for the parties to work out.” Is ending the Israeli-Palestinian conflict really possible, with so much bitterness and mistrust on both sides? Kerry answers with a diplomat’s long view: “Everybody understands that it’s going to take some period of time for a transition. That’s why it is phased . . .. What is critical, I think, is to give people a sense that there can be an end of the conflict and an end of claims, that there is a framework within which it is all contained.” On the Iran negotiations, Kerry was guarded. He seems to share President Obama’s view that the odds are against a comprehensive deal. But he argued that the United States should stay focused for now on the nuclear deal and avoid bargaining over regional issues such as Syria. A regional security framework with Iran could come later, Kerry says, if the nuclear talks succeed. “President Obama and I both share the belief that thinking about and exploring a regional security component to this overall approach to peace is very important, but — and I underscore a great, huge ‘but’ — we are not engaged in that discussion with Iran at this point in time, nor will we

be until we resolve the nuclear file.” Perhaps hoping to defuse Saudi Arabia’s anxiety about such outreach to Iran, Kerry noted that Saudi King Abdullah mentioned “a potential new security arrangement for the region” in his 2002 Arab Peace Initiative. That document does mention “comprehensive peace” and “security for all the states of the region.” Kerry made his comments sitting by the fireplace in his big office on the seventh floor of the State Department. He was in his shirtsleeves, occasionally throwing logs on the fire. From this office, Henry Kissinger and James Baker tried unsuccessfully to crack the Israeli-Palestinian nut, and Madeleine Albright and Condoleezza Rice attempted without success to engage Iran. Kerry insists he’s not trying to emulate his predecessors. “I’m not doing this in some model,” he said. “I mean, it can require a push, it can require stepping back. It can require drama, and it can require silence.” At another point, he said with relish that critics who argue he’s been too involved in his Middle East mission should realize: “It’s my job. I’m secretary of state.” — Courtesy: The Washington Post

Picture of a president..!

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N India pictures of the current president line the walls of ev ery government office. I wonder how the president approves which picture of him looks the best: “This is a terrible picture of me!” “Sir we have already sent it to decorate the walls of the embassies and high commissions all over the world!” “Recall all of them! I won’t have any picture of mine hung with-

out my approval!” So I decided to take the new President for a little walk: “Where to?” “Washington Mr President!” “Okay lets go, what is this? A memorial?” “Yes sir!” “Who’s that man sitting inside? It’s the ugliest statue of anyone I have ever seen!” “I agree with you Mr President! And if you look closely, you will notice the left side of his face has smaller cheekbones than his right.” “Bah! It makes him look even more ugly!” “Take a look at his wrinkled skin!” “Horrible!” “His enormous ears and huge bulging eyes!” “Ugh!” “His nose Mr President, big and crooked!” “Yuck!” “Look closely sir at those pockmarks

on his face, and can you see an odd lump on his lower lip!” “This man is the most terrible looking fellow I have ever seen!” “And sir look, there’s an ugly mole on the left side of his cheek and ma’am have you ever, ever seen such a long neck with that awful protruding Adam’s apple?” “This is awful take me away from here!” “Ah Mr President would you just look around you?” What?” “Look at the people!” “They are crying! Some are weeping! Sobbing! Why? Who is this man?” “Abraham Lincoln, Mr President, once President of the United States of America, the man who fought for and saw slavery abolished

in his country!” And as I whisper these words, I hear a great hush around me, and tears roll down the eyes of the rest of us at the Lincoln Memorial in Washington. “Sir, if you can be a President like he was, people will not see the imperfections of your artist or the plainness of your features, they will look beyond cheekbones, chin, grey hair and short stature and see such startling beauty, they will gasp at the radiance that leaps out like it does with Lincoln!” “Bah take me back to India, and get an artist who will make me look a little taller..! —Email:bobsbanter@gmail.com

A walk for solidarity TAYYABA PARACHA

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ashmir is jugular vein of Pakistan”, “LA Ilahah Illallah unites Pakistan with Kashmir” and “we are with our kashmiri brothers” were the slogans heard over the China Chowk to press club at 5th February around 3pm to 5pm. Members of National Youth Parliament Pakistan (NYPP) had gathered around with banners and play cards for a vigil walk to show solidarity with Kashmir. The walk was accompanied by Asad Umer and the President of NYPP, Touseef Abbasi. The main motive of the walk was to give a message to the kashimiris that the Pakistanis are with them. People say walks are of no use, as in the last 65 years of captivity, these walks and protests haven’t done anything. True, but it’s the least a citizen can do to show that we Pakistanis still care. The message wasn’t for the government or the UN, but for an ordinary citizen living in Kashmir who watches the TV, or reads the newspaper or is in contact with the world via social media and sees people standing up in the rain for peace showing their solidarity. At the end of the walk Asad Umer addressed the crowd saying that don’t think of Kashmir as a geopolitical issue, but an issue of humanity. The walk wasn’t meant for showing hatred towards India but was a try to spread harmony among the people and make earth a peaceful place to live. —Via email

Internal challenges ARSLAN SHOUKAT MEMON Pakistan still continues to struggle to become strong socially, economically and politically. However, its personality today shows a total disconnect between the vision that inspired its creation and the current behaviour. Ironically, it has been confronting multiple problems since its inception. It is now facing an economic crisis, declining quality of education, terrorism and a lack of good governance. There is a need to overcome our internal challenges through political reconciliation and confidence-building measures. The country must return to democracy rooted in the will of the people, constitutional supremacy, the rule of law, good governance and institutional integrity. —Larkana

Our responsibilities FAISAL DAYO Our society faces host of troubles, all troubles are well known and discussed in society, These troubles are in every sector like social, economical, political, religious and cultural. In our society where people make laws unfortunately they violate themselves. But I don’t know why people blame on other especially on government. We blame in daily life that society is bad. But they don’t know what is society, we whole are the society. It means indirectly they blame themselves. Most of the problems mentioned above are generic to the system and affect society brutally. We protest, demonstrate or chant slogans against government that there is no electricity, no gas, no water, no schools or other problems. Government is responsible to provide these things, which is providing us, now it depends upon us how we are using it? In the term of electricity we protest, but on other side we use it more than our consumption. We also use more Gas especially in winter; we also waste water, which are gifts by God. We also protest about Schools, so schools are also damaged by us because government has hired teachers for those schools, but these schools have became Ghost schools because teachers are not going there. Those teachers should have perform their responsibilities. A phrase which is commonly used before every illegal work in Pakistan is “Do it Man, it is Pakistan” or sometimes “Everyone is doing, if I did it will not be a sin”. While riding on wrong way, crossing bike from foot paths, throwing garbage on roads etc. So we have to understand and live like a responsible citizen in our country we have to love it like our home and also have to kick out this kind of stereotype thoughts from our minds. —Islamabad

Endless troubles HASHIM ABRO While the ruling elite are seen day in and day out busy with the much– publicized Sindh Festival to promote soft image of the country but the reality depicts a depressing picture of the state of affairs in the entire province. Unfortunately, thieves, thugs, and crooks rule the roost in province Sindh. Taxpayers’ money continue to be siphoned into pockets of politicians and their comrades in private business though suspicious projects and so on and so forth and corrupt activities. The public-private partnerships, which were intended to improve the provision of services and reduce the cost of delivery, have morphed into noxious and corrupt relationships, which compromise service delivery and increase the financial burden on the province. The winners in all this are not the poor people who have no access to decent roads, water, sanitation, education and jobs, but unscrupulous elements and thugs who occupy powerful government positions and their private-sector cronies. There is no law and order

in any part of the province. There is crime and corruption in every part of the province. Combating corrupt activities in the public and private sector organizations receives extended lip-service but nothing is being done. Indeed, we have corruption-busting organizations but it appears as if we have gone fishing with a defective net. Prosecution of corruption activities is not visible anywhere in the province. Small fish and high-profile individuals who have not fallen out of favour with a clique of ruling crooks. High-profile corrupt relationships continue to prosper and exist on the periphery of the prosecutorial radar. It is not as if lawenforcement agencies are unaware of some of these criminal activities but the need to appease the principals and even protect them from prosecution appears to supersede enforcement of the law. The ruling elite is doing nothing to uplift the poor people in the rural areas, but an unlawful and unethical investment on the political establishment to secure present and future economic benefits goes on. Indeed, celebrating the Culture and heritage is a noble vision and mission but something practical and pragmatic should also be done to change the fate of these deprived and denied people of the province. Protecting people and their property from thieves, thugs, dacoits who are in action in the upper and lower regions of the province is also a noble mission and cause like that of Sindh Festival. —Islamabad

Build Kalabagh Dam immediately AAMIR KAMAL SOOFI th

After having defeated ANP 11 May 2013 election Mr. Imran Khan’s Party set up a provincial government in KPK. People fully supported Imran Khan’s Party against Pakistan Peoples Party in all provinces of Pakistan. The Party that was able to win a clear majority in the National Assembly however was the PML (N). After fourteen years Mian Nawaz Sharif was elected Prime Minister of Islamic Republic of Pakistan. Both persons are true Pakistanis and both have the courage to tackle problems facing our sweet homeland. Imran Khan is a man of principles and so is Mian Nawaz Sharif. In 1997, on the occasion of Iqbal day i.e. on 9th November the then Prime Minister, Nawaz Sharif was the chief guest in Alhamra Art Council the Mall. He was addressing the gathering. My father Prof. Dr. M. A. Soofi who belongs to Haripur Hazara rose from his seat and pointed out to Nawaz Sharif the necessity building of Kalabagh Dam. He said to Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif “Kindly announce the building of Kalabagh Damn. My father has written a book on Kalabagh Dam and has mentioned in it that it was the Quaid’s Cabinet that proposed the building of a Dam in Mianwali which could generate 3600 MW electricity within 5 to 7 years. The Daily Dawn published a news item in its column “50 years ago today” Big Plan to industrialize Pakistan. The news item may be read as follows: Karachi: The recommendations of the Pakistan industries Conference} which was held in Karachi from 13th to 17th Dec. 1948 last, have been forwarded to the Provincial and Central Governments and the various Ministries to enable them to take necessary steps for implementation. As there commendations cover a vast field they require examination by various authorities regarding power generation and distribution the conference had recommended that Pakistan should aim at generating 5,00,000 KWS in the next five to seven years to meet its requirements of electric power both for industrial and other purpose” and that the highest priority should be given to the generation of hydro electric power. It had recommended that while the Mianwali hydel project in the west Punjab and the Karnafulli project in East Bengal should be taken up immediately and completed within the shortest possible time. The Rohri and Nara Canal projects in Sind should also be taken up. As far the coalmines

the conference had recommended that every effort should be made to exploit the present coalmines in a scientific manner and the target of half million ton per annum of coal should be reached during this year. Now we are facing acute shortage of electricity due to negligence of our past governments. If this Dam is built, flood water may be stored and this water may be used to generate electricity. Recently a referendum was conducted by a widely circulated urdu newspaper. In which 99% people voted in favour of this dam. In that Both Imran Khan and Mian Nawaz Sharif should be aware that it was Quaid-i-Azam’s Cabinet that proposed this site for the Kalabagh Dam. Bear in mind Mr. Imran Khan and Mian Nawaz Sharif that if this dam is built in your era, then you would go down in history as leader’s who did a great service to the nation. Kindly make efforts to build consensus on this issue because it is the urgent need of our community. Its feasibility report is ready for construction. The site is’ ideal for the construction of a dam. This is a golden opportunity for both of you, as well as the people of our nation. Please rise to the occasion and chalk out a program to initiate this dam for the sake of Pakistan. Had this dam been built, at the right time, we would not be facing an energy crisis today. One thing which could be done to develop consensus to hold a referendum in KPK, Peshawar, Mianwali and other cities of Pakistan. I request the Prime Minister Mian Nawaz Sharif and Imran Khan to look into this matter and to construct Kalabagh Dam. —Lahore

Talent utilisation J S H GOHAR I congratulate Umar Anwar Jahangir for getting the distinction of being the youngest Pakistani student to be included in the Pakistan delegation to the World Economic Forum, recently held in Davos, Switzerland. In this critical period, Pakistan really needs intelligent people like Umar to be in the team which will navigate and plan the development and utilisation of Pakistan’s vast natural and manual potentials. Long live Pakistan! —Canada

Strategic dialogue ZAYANE BIBI Mechanism for strategic dialogues was decided four years ago. When Pakistan and the US have had many rounds of strategic dialogue in 2009 and 2010, no progress could be made. Due to many accidents, like Navy Seals operation at an Abbottabad compound, and attack on the Salala check posts the process of dialogues discontinued. During the recent visit of PM Nawaz Sharif both the countries decided to resume this dialogue process. It was decided to restart dialogues in March but due to some urgency on both sides, it decided to hold them in January. They have decided to revive five groups of which anti terrorism and non proliferation are of higher importance. In his opening remarks, Kerry was careful to emphasize that the dialogue will focus on other topics apart from security. He also checked off issues including women’s rights, investment in infrastructure and energy ties. This shows that there is very less realization in the US that Pakistan major problem today facing id regarding internal and external security problem. Pakistan needs not only help of other countries but US as well to overcome these security problems. —Via email

DISCLAIMER THE articles, columns and letters are published on these pages in good faith. However, the contents of these writings may not necessarily match the views of the newspaper.

—Editor Email:editorial@pakobserver.net


Syrian official: Aid workers to return to Homs BEIRUT—Aid workers are expected to return to the besieged central Syrian city of Homs, a government official said, a day after trucks carrying food and medical supplies came under fire. The attack wounded an aid worker and jeopardized a rare cease-fire in the nearly 3-yearold conflict hours before the resumption of peace talks in Geneva. Khaled Erksoussi, the head of operations at the Syrian Red Crescent told The Associated Press that the agency will try to evacuate more civilians from rebel-held areas in Homs in line with a U.N.-brokered agreement on a three-day truce to enable some people to leave and allow entry of food shipments. Syrian forces loyal to President Bashar Assad have prevented the entry of food and medical aid into rebel-held parts of Homs for over a year, badly affecting hundreds of civilians holed up in the areas. Erksoussi said 83 children, women and elderly people on wheelchairs have been evacuated since Friday when the truce went into effect. It was broken a day later, leaving an aid worker wounded and two trucks damaged, Erksoussi said in a phone interview from Damascus. He said aid workers did manage to deliver 250 food parcels and 290 hygiene kits as well medicine to the central, rebel-held neighborhood of

Hamidiyeh Saturday, but no one was evacuated from the besieged area because of the attack. “We barely got our staff out alive,” Erksoussi said. It was not clear who fired at the convoy. Syrian state TV said members of the Red Crescent were wounded by rebel fire in the area, but gave no further details. Opposition activists blamed the government-allied militia for the attacks. Homs city was one of the first areas to rise up against Assad in 2011 and has been particularly hard hit by the war. Over the past year, the government has regained control over much of the city, except for a few neighborhoods in the historic center. The Syrian uprising began with largely peaceful protests but gradually evolved into a civil war with sectarian overtones pitting predominant Sunni Muslim rebels against Assad’s government that is dominated by Alawites, an offshoot group of Shiite Islam. More than 130,000 people have been killed, according to activists. Millions have been forced out of their homes, seeking shelter in neighboring countries or in safer parts of their homeland. There was no tangible progress, as the Syrian government accused the opposition of capitalizing on human suffering in Homs to score points with the international community. A second round of talks is set to start on Monday.—AP

Seven dead, 1,000 injured as heavy snow hits Japan TOKYO—The heaviest snow in snow-linked accidents — decades in Tokyo and other areas of Japan has left at least seven dead and more than 1,000 injured across the country, reports said on Sunday. As much as 27 centimetres (10.6 inches) of snow was recorded in Tokyo by late Saturday, the heaviest fall in the capital for 45 years, according to meteorologists. The storm hit Tokyo on the eve of its gubernatorial election. Observers say the heavy snowfall may affect voter turnout in the city of 13 million people. As a depression moved along the Pacific coast Saturday, the northeastern city of Sendai saw 35 centimetres (13.8 inches) of snow, the heaviest in 78 years. Local media said at least seven people have been killed in

mostly crashes after their cars skidded on icy roads. In central Aichi prefecture, a 50-year-old man died after his car slipped on the icy road and rammed into an advertisement steel pole, a local rescuer said. Public broadcaster NHK reported at least 1,051 people were injured across the nation, many of whom had slipped on the ground or fallen while shovelling the snow off their roofs, NHK said. Nearly 5,000 people were stranded at Narita airport Saturday as traffic linking the airport to the capital was disrupted, NHK said. Further snowfall is expected Sunday in the northern part of the country, the Japan Meteorological Agency said.—Online

South Africa: President’s son tied to fatal crash JOHANNESBURG—A son of South Africa’s president is being investigated in a case of culpable homicide, or negligent killing, after his luxury car collided with a minibus taxi on Feb. 1, killing one woman, South African media reported Sunday. President Jacob Zuma’s son, Duduzane, was driving a Porsche when the accident happened in Sandton, an affluent area of Johannesburg, South Africa’s Sunday Times newspaper reported. Duduzane Zuma, a businessman, could face charges, said The Sunday Independent. Brig. Neville Malila, a provincial police spokesman, said one person died and two were injured in a road accident on Feb. 1, but he declined to reveal the names of the drivers, pending an investigation. “We are investigating a case of culpable homicide,” Malila said.

The case is politically sensitive for the president, who has been criticized amid allegations of corruption in his government and a multi-million dollar upgrade of his private estate that triggered public outrage because it was paid for by the state. On Friday, Zuma announced that general elections will be held May 7 in what he called an opportunity to build on South Africa’s democracy, 20 years after the end of white minority rule. The political opposition has alleged that police gave Duduzane preferential treatment at the crash site, citing reports that he was not given a mandatory Breathalyzer test and he was allowed to have the car towed instead of it being impounded as evidence. The Democratic Alliance, the main opposition party, urged South Africa’s police watchdog body to investigate.—AP

The Fertile Crescent faces uncertain future CLOVIS MAKSOUD

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Supporters of Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovych arguing with anti-government protesters in Kiev.

Poverty, joblessness underpin Bosnia’s bloody riots SARAJEVO—The failure of Bosnia’s political leaders to address grinding poverty and growing unemployment has prompted the first violent protests since the 1992-95 war, with dire warnings of worse to come. Starting in the industrial hub of Tuzla in the northeast, the protests spread this week across the country, turning into riots that left hundreds injured and government buildings in flames. While unemployment figures range from the Central Bank’s estimate of 27.5 percent to the statistical agency’s 44 percent, the Balkan country’s unemployment rate is easily among the highest in Europe. Joblessness of more than 25 percent among Bosnia’s young adults is a “stunning and problematic” figure, the World Bank’s director for southeastern Europe Ellen Goldstein said last month.

“High unemployment and low labour force participation continue to pose a threat and need to be addressed to ensure a peaceful and prosperous future for Bosnia,” Goldstein told a World Bank conference. One in five Bosnians live below the poverty line, and at least one in five workers are thought to be engaged in the so-called grey economy. Although macroeconomic data showed the economy made a fragile recovery of 1.0 percent in 2013 after shrinking 0.5 percent in 2012, Bosnia’s 3.8 million people have felt scant improvement in their everyday lives. “More and more people live in misery and poverty. They are hungry,” said political analyst Vahid Sehic. Bosnia’s citizens are among the poorest in Europe, with an average monthly salary of 420 euros

($570). A shadow economy, endemic corruption and a complex post-war political structure that enables squabbling politicians to block reforms are seen as key impediments to improving the economy. Moreover, hasty privatisations that enabled tycoons to shut down dozens of companies and make quick profits by selling their assets before declaring bankruptcy have left hundreds of people jobless and in despair. Local media have widely reported that new owners often failed to comply with privatisation contracts and failed to pay workers for up to two years. Bosnia started high-level accession talks with the European Union in mid-2012, trailing behind other Balkan countries. Croatia became a full member in 2013, Slovenia in 2004.—AFP

Iran agrees on ‘seven practical steps’ with IAEA TEHRAN—Iran agreed on Sunday seven more ‘practical steps’ with the UN nuclear watchdog in talks seeking further safeguards to enhance transparency on Tehran’s nuclear drive, a top official said. “Seven more practical steps in regards to cooperation with the (International Atomic Energy) Agency was agreed” that need to be implemented by May 15, Iran’s envoy to the Viennabased body, Reza Najafi said. The remarks reported by Iranian media were attributed to a joint statement that came after two days of talks between five IAEA experts and Iranian nuclear officials led by Najafi. No elements of the deal were publicised and Najafi reportedly said IAEA director general Yukiya Amano would brief the agency’s board of governors.

There was also no mention whether discussions had broached long-standing allegations that prior to 2003, and possibly since, Iran’s nuclear work had “possible military dimensions” as suspected by the IAEA. Describing the talks however, Najafi said “constructive technical meetings” had assessed “the progress in implementation of practical steps” that was required of Iran under a framework deal agreed on November 11. The deal required Tehran to take six practical steps that included visits to the unfinished site of a so-called heavy water research reactor in Arak and a uranium mine in the south. Western powers and Israel suspect that Iran’s nuclear drive masks military objectives, a claim Tehran repeatedly denies.—AFP

Tunisia arrests suspect in politician’s killing TUNIS—Tunisia’s government says the suspect in the July 25 assassination of an opposition politician is among four men arrested in an overnight counterterrorism raid. The Interior Ministry statement has described the men as “dangerous terrorists” and identified one as Ahmed Melki, known as the “Somali” who is wanted in connected with the assassination of Mohammed Brahmi, a leftwing parliamentarian whose slaying last summer provoked a political crisis. One of the suspects was described as severely wounded after being shot in the face. Three policemen were wounded in the gunbattle.—AP

Egypt’s swine flu death toll reaches 38

Two owners of Tazreen Fashions Ltd., Delwar Hossain and his wife, Mahmuda Akter are escorted by security personnel to a court in Dhaka, Bangladesh.

CAIRO—Egypt’s Health Ministry says the number of people killed by swine flu in the country since December has reached 38. In a statement Sunday, the ministry said that more than 1,300 people have been hospitalized after being infected by the virus. In 2009, the global swine flu pandemic prompted Egyptian authorities to slaughter around 300,000 pigs previously used to dispose of the city’s organic garbage. However, Jason McDonald, spokesman for the Atlanta-based Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, has said that the virus is now most often transmitted from human to human, and not through contact with pigs.—AP

Democracy can save Thais from political free-fall THITINAN PONGSUDHIRAK

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hailand’s political descent, which began with November’s anti-government pro tests, has reached free-fall. The snap elections recently proved inconclusive. The caretaker administration of Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra lacks sufficient authority to govern and looks untenable. What matters most is how long the crisis lasts and how deep it becomes. If stability is restored in the weeks to come without widespread violence, characteristic Thai resilience may carry the day. But if the instability persists for months, Thailand’s shock absorbers may fail. This could result in unpredictable violence leading to structural problems. Macro-policy institutions would wobble. The country’s appeal to investors and tourists would wane. When anti-government protesters under the banner of the People’s Democratic Reform Committee took to Bangkok’s streets, they took Yingluck’s government to task for at-

tempting to pass a law that would have absolved her brother, former prime minister Thaksin Shinawatra (now in self-imposed exile), of a criminal conviction for corruption. This manoeuvre, which would also have exonerated protagonists in a decade-long political crisis, has become Yingluck’s undoing. The Yingluck government banked on the election to buy time and gain a new mandate. But the polls were boycotted by the opposition Democrat party. The election commission favoured deferring until all parties were able to run under more peaceful circumstances. The protesters, adamant that political reforms were imperative before any election, obstructed voting in some areas. On the other side, the pro-government “red shirts” in the countryside, along with pro-democracy activists, feared any delay would derail democratic rule and play into the hands of antigovernment protesters. In the event Thaksin’s ruling party, Pheu Thai, failed to win outright for the first time since 2001. Since it was running uncontested or fac-

ing easy contests in most provinces, turnout became the crucial indicator. As in past elections, a high turnout in the heartlands of the north and northeast, which account for more than half the electorate, would have validated the government’s legitimacy. But average participation of 71 per cent since 2001 shrank to 46 per cent. In the heartlands, barely 50 per cent showed up. In Bangkok turnout was 26 per cent. Almost 11 per cent of precincts were unable to stage the polls because of a lack of candidates and obstacles to voting in areas including the south and Bangkok that are strongholds of the Democrat party. Overall, the appeal of Thaksin’s party has been eroded significantly — yet it is a pity that the opposition party chose not to run. In a free and fair contest, the margins would have been close, and other parties would have had a chance to form a government that excluded Thaksin’s party. The protesters succeeded in exposing the graft and mismanagement of the government. Thaksin’s amnesty gambit was roundly deplored

by all sides. Policy missteps such as an illconceived and lossmaking rice subsidy scheme , which has yet to compensate myriad farmers for their crops, undermined government performance, too. The government could also be vulnerable to fraud and corruption allegations arising from ill-conceived policies, including the allegedly corrupt rice scheme. Another relates to Pheu Thai’s previous attempts to amend the constitution. Either of these could dislodge Yingluck from office. It would be similar to 2008, when another of Thaksin’s proxy governments met its demise. Despite the grievances of protesters of varying colours, a coup and judicial interventions of recent years, electoral democracy works. The temptation to veer off this path is strong in Bangkok but must be resisted. A democratic Thailand that can settle scores through the ballot box, reform and compromise is a boon not only to the Thai people but also to its promising neighbourhood. —Courtesy Financial Times

raq and Syria have been described as the pillars of the Arab Fertile Crescent. Both countries, however, are in a state of intractable conflict and instability. In Iraq, the sectarian and ethnic divide, which can be traced back to the US occupation, remains the principal obstacle preventing national unity. Reconciliation becomes less possible every day, as there are daily bombings, even of ministries of government, and attacks on Fallujah and the Anbar district in particular not to mention the regular destruction of civilian quarters in Baghdad. This sectarianism cannot be allowed to continue. While political forces seek to bring about national unity, the challenges remain unaddressed in a manner that promises an even more rapid spiral into chaos. Similarly, with the deadlock between the Syrian government and its opposition at the Geneva 2 conference a few days ago, the continuation of conflict in Syria is inevitable. The United Nations and other humanitarian organizations were dismayed that the conference failed to open humanitarian aid corridors and establish local cease-fires in Aleppo and other cities and towns, especially Homs. Valerie Amos, the UN Undersecretary-General for Humanitarian Affairs, stated that “while the discussions continue to try and find a political solution to end the crisis, ordinary men, women and children are dying needlessly across the country and others are desperate for want of food, clean water or medical care. … The situation is totally unacceptable.”

The failure of the meeting in Geneva shows that the international community, especially the United States and Russia, is unable to quickly bring an end to this tragedy. As Lakhdar Brahimi, the UN Special Envoy to Syria, noted on Friday, the Syrian government and its opposition have agreed that the basis for the next round of talks scheduled for Feb. 10 will be the Geneva I communiqué sponsored by the US and Russia, which outlines the need for a transition of power in Syria. While it isn’t rational to predict a breakthrough on Feb. 10, it is expected that the US and Russia will have a better understanding of the outcome they seek. As pillars of the Fertile Crescent, Iraq and Syria have always provided Arab culture with the best of art, poetry, and literature, and have shown the Arab yearning for unity, democracy, and development. The Arab people yearn for the day when such a description is once again validated and credible. —Courtesy Arab News

For a healthy virtual world LI YUNLONG Authorities have the duty to take steps to keep Internet free of violence, obscenity and seditious elements. The development of the Internet as a medium of communication in China has been phenomenal since the mid-1990s. In 1997, only 299,000 computers in China were linked to the Internet, with 620,000 people venturing into cyberspace. But by the end of 2013, the number of people surfing the virtual world had crossed 618 million, which means 45.8 percent of China’s total population uses the Internet, which is higher than the world average. The Internet has become a new channel for people to express their opinions and thus exercise their freedom of speech, and according to the Constitution, every Chinese citizen has the right to freedom of expression. The Internet has become the primary source of information and main channel of expression for netizens in China, a report in December said. News websites cater to 490 million users, and instant messenger services like QQ and MSN have 530 million users, with another 430 million users attached to blogs and similar services. Microblogging websites have 270 million users. The Internet is playing an increasingly important role in helping people voice their opinions on ordinary things and events. Many people use online forums and websites to participate in political affairs, gather information and gain knowledge, and express their views on public policies. People’s enthusiasm for cyberspace is reflected in the use of the Internet by various levels of governments to solicit public opinion on a host of issues. It would not be an exaggeration to say that the Internet has become an essential reference point for governments in their decision-making process. But freedom of any kind has its boundaries, and freedom of expression on the Internet is no exception. Only if proper boundaries are set for it and order is maintained on the Internet can people fully enjoy their freedom in the virtual as well as the real worlds. Proper regulation of the Internet is also a basic principle of the rule of law. In fact, it is an important part of every country’s administration to regulate the Internet and ensure its citizens enjoy freedom of speech online. A thriving Internet, however, has raised the fears of gambling, violence, blackmailing and hacking which may ruin people’s lives and undermine their security. Governments across the world thus have the right and responsibility to take measures to keep the Internet free of these threats. And that is exactly what the Chinese government has been doing. With the flourishing of the Internet, the State has introduced laws and regulations to safeguard citizens’ right to freedom of speech on the Internet and ensure that they do not violate this right. Some of these regulations are the Provisional Regulation on Publishing on the Internet, Provisional Cultural Regulation on the Internet, and the Regulation on Internet Information Service Management. These laws and regulations, while setting the boundaries for freedom of expression on the Internet, have ensured such expression does not harm others’ freedom. For instance, it is illegal to create, send, copy or spread nine types of information online. The types of information banned on the Internet are those that provoke ethnic hatred or ethnic discrimination; are against the State’s policy on religion; undermine social stability; contain obscenity or violence, or promote gambling, terrorism or salacity; are blasphemous or insulting to other people, or violate other people’s interests; violate the basic principles of the Constitution; are detrimental to the security of the State or national unity, or expose State secrets; and harm State honor or interests. Libelous and other detrimental information can spread easily online. So to make it clear what constitutes libel according to the Criminal Code, the Supreme People’s Court and the Supreme People’s Procuratorate jointly issued an explanation last year. The explanation says that a person is considered to have committed libel if he/she intentionally fabricates, helps fabricate, or spreads information that might harm other people’s reputation. Such an act will be considered serious if it forces the victim or his/her close relative/s to commit suicide, suffer bodily harm or lose sanity, or if the information is browsed 5,000 times or more, or forwarded 500 times or more on the Internet. For such offences, the responsible person could face a punishment that ranges from criminal detention to three years in prison. Public prosecution could be engaged to sue the perpetrator if the information spread by him/her causes a mass incident, public disorder or ethnic conflict, or seriously harms the State’s image or interests. These regulations, which are constantly being strengthened, have promoted freedom of speech and maintained order on the Internet. In 2000, China had only 27,289 websites. By the end of last year, the number had reached 3.2 million, with 2013 alone seeing a growth of 19.4 percent. These facts indicate that an improved legal environment is helping Chinese netizens better use the Internet and protect their own interests. —Courtesy China Daily


IMF approves 3rd tranche of $545m to Pakistan

Progress reported in Govt-Taliban talks From Page 1

From Page 1 initial consolidation efforts relying on revenue mobilization and reduction in energy subsidies. IMF said that authority’s reform program remains broadly on track, with the government meeting all of the quantitative performance criteria by end December 2013, with the exception of the targets on SBP’s net swap/forward positions and the ceiling on government borrowing from SBP. The authorities have reaffirmed their commitment to adopt the necessary corrective actions, including measures to improve the financing of government debt through a mediumterm strategy of institutional development and deepening of the government’s securities market. Progress on the unwinding of the SBP’s swap/forward positions to reach program limits is underway, and progress on this front is satisfactory so far. “The mission recognizes the authorities’ resolve to pursue agreed structural reforms to enhance medium term growth prospects and rebuild foreign exchange reserves to underpin investor confidence. Timely implementation of reform measures articulated in the National Energy Policy is of high priority in ensuring affordable and reliable supply of energy. Recognizing that fixing Pakistan’s energy problem calls for a medium term strategy of sustained reform, the authorities agreed to press forward with efforts to improve energy sector governance, promote private investment in electricity power generation and modernization, and transition to a market-based system of gas pricing. Furthermore the government’s privatization agenda remains on track with capital market transactions for some companies, investments by strategic investors in others, and restructuring to improve resource allocation and limit poor performance. “Protecting the most vulnerable from the direct and indirect impact of fiscal adjustment continues to be a priority of the IMF as well as the Government of Pakistan.

MQM worker released From Page 1 Faisal Colony on Sunday night when he was picked by Karachi Police from Shah Faisal Colony Bridge. Police thrashed him and dragged him out of his car and took him to Police Station. Fahad was released on personal guarantee but was shifted to a private hospital for treatment as he suffered from brutal Police torture and his testes were also hurt. The MQM Coordination Committee, workers of the MQM and relatives of bridegroom Fahad and his bride had reached the Karachi Press Club at 2 AM on Monday night and later staged a sit-in in front of the Sindh Chief Minister House. Fahad’s bride was also present at the Karachi Press Club and the CM House. Karachi Police Chief Additional Inspector General of Police Shahid Hayat said that Fahad was wanted to Police for murdering 4 cops but later he had denied he had given any such statement and said that Police had no criminal record of Fahad. Meanwhile, Karachi Police authority suspended 4 cops, who had arrested a worker of the Muttahidda Qaumi Movement (MQM), Fahad Aziz on the occasion of his marriage ceremony and shifted him to a hospital after allegedly torturing him.

NATO container From Page 1 ing two persons including the driver. The firing also caused the truck to catch fire which partially damaged the container. The attackers managed to escape from the scene. The fire brigade was called in to control the blaze whereas the victims were shifted to Civil Hospital Sibi.

PM to chair CCI meeting From Page 1 The Engineering Council (Amendment) Bill 2013 will also be presented in the meeting of the CCI for approval.

7 Afghan soldiers die From Page 1 security for the country to Afghan forces over the summer.—AP

To that end, the mission acknowledges the government’s efforts to deepen its support to the poor through expanding the Income Support Program (BISP), and other mechanisms, and welcomes its commitment to upgrade the delivery system to ensure timely payments to 4.9 million eligible families. “The IMF mission staff will prepare a report for the IMF Executive Board on the second review under Pakistan’s EFF that is tentatively scheduled for consideration in late-March, 2014. Upon approval, SDR 360 million (about US$550 million) would be made available. He said that decisive efforts to broaden the tax net through the elimination of tax exemptions and loopholes granted through Statutory regulatory Orders (SROs) are critical to the future of Pakistan’s economy. An International Monetary Fund (IMF) staff mission, led by Jeffrey Franks, met with the Pakistan authorities in Dubai from February 19, 2014 for discussions on the second review of Pakistan’s IMF-supported program under the Extended Fund Facility (EFF) approved by the Executive Board of the IMF on September 4, 2013. At the conclusion the IMF mission in a statement said that it is encouraged by the overall progress made in pushing ahead with policies to strengthen macroeconomic stability and reviving economic growth. The mission reached staff-level understandings with the authorities on a set of economic policies detailed in an updated Letter of Intent, which will be subject to Executive Board approval. The statement further said that foreign exchange market of Pakistan has been stabilized however pressures on the balance of payments are likely to persist for some months. IMF said that services and manufacturing are driving better-than-expected GDP growth, as reforms in the electricity sector seem to be bearing fruit with electricity shortages and

unscheduled load-shedding declining. Led by large scale manufacturing and service sectors, growth is picking up and is now expected to reach about 3.1 per-cent for FY2013/14 as a whole, compared to the earlier estimate of 2.8 percent. Fiscal performance continued on track in the second quarter of 2013/14, with initial consolidation efforts relying on revenue mobilization and reduction in energy subsidies. IMF said that authority’s reform program remains broadly on track, with the government meeting all of the quantitative performance criteria by end December 2013, with the exception of the targets on SBP’s net swap/ forward positions and the ceiling on government borrowing from SBP. The authorities have reaffirmed their commitment to adopt the necessary corrective actions, including measures to improve the financing of government debt through a medium-term strategy of institutional development and deepening of the government’s securities market. Progress on the unwinding of the SBP’s swap/forward positions to reach program limits is underway, and progress on this front is satisfactory so far. “The mission recognizes the authorities’ resolve to pursue agreed structural reforms to enhance medium term growth prospects and rebuild foreign exchange reserves to underpin investor confidence. Timely implementation of reform measures articulated in the National Energy Policy is of high priority in ensuring affordable and reliable supply of energy. Recognizing that fixing Pakistan’s energy problem calls for a medium term strategy of sustained reform, the authorities agreed to press forward with efforts to improve energy sector governance, promote private investment in electricity power generation and modernization, and transition to a market-based system of gas pricing. Furthermore the government’s privatization agenda

remains on track with capital market transactions for some companies, investments by strategic investors in others, and restructuring to improve resource allocation and limit poor performance. “Protecting the most vulnerable from the direct and indirect impact of fiscal adjustment continues to be a priority of the IMF as well as the Government of Pakistan. To that end, the mission acknowledges the government’s efforts to deepen its support to the poor through expanding the Income Support Program (BISP), and other mechanisms, and welcomes its commitment to upgrade the delivery system to ensure timely payments to 4.9 million eligible families. “The IMF mission staff will prepare a report for the IMF Executive Board on the second review under Pakistan’s EFF that is tentatively scheduled for consideration in late-March, 2014. Upon approval, SDR 360 million (about US$550 million) would be made available. Finance Minister Ishaq Dar his part said the government is taking important steps for economic stability in the country. Addressing a joint press conference, he said unscheduled load shedding has been eliminated and we are striving to meet the electricity shortfall. He said energy policy has been approved by the government. The Minister said government is ensuring the smooth supply of electricity to the industry despite shortfalls. Ishaq Dar said the government is giving subsidiary on the electricity. He said that tariff has not been increased for the consumers using upto two hundred units. He said government is trying to control line losses. Head of IMF Review Mission, Jeffrey Frank said Pakistan’s economic growth has increased from two point eight per cent to three point one per cent which is a good omen. He said IMF is not pressing Pakistan for privatization but it is in the best interest of the country.—Online

Altaf asks Army Chief to take notice of atrocities in Karachi Pakistan and a large number of newsmen were present. Hussain said that on Jun 19, 1992, the then Chief of the Army Staff late General Asif Nawaz Janjua had launched a military operation, ‘Operation Clean-up’ against the MQM in the disguise of operation against 72 big fish. That military operation had created misunderstanding and hatred among the Mohajirs and the Pakistan Army. The ongoing targeted operation in Karachi was launched with the approval of Federal and Sindh provincial governments, which raised serious reservations upon which the MQM had contacted the Prime Minister and federal Interior Minister with complaints but to no avail, he said, adding that Sindh government had formed special groups in Karachi Police for carrying out extra-judicial killings of workers of the MQM and had so far killed many during past few months. The recent incident of extra-judicial killing was the murder of a worker of the MQM, Salman. Police had arrested him from Korangi on Feb 3 and after killing him extra-judicially, his body was dropped near a road in Landhi, reminded the MQM Chief. Hussain in his appeal he made to the Chief of the Army Staff General Rahil Shareef said that the country was already passing through crucial times due to which extra burden of responsibility for safeguarding the country had fallen on his shoulders. However, when the institutions being controlled by the Federal Government and the Pakistan Army would start violating the laws of the country, the efforts for creating harmony and bringing tranquility in the country would be badly affected and would promote hatred and biases. He said that he would further update him (Chief of Army) that after Salman was extra-judicially killed, he (Altaf Hussain) had made efforts to contact the Karachi’s Corps Commander General Sajjad Ghani, Pakistan Rangers Sindh Director General Maj. Gen. Rizwan Akhtar and Sindh Chief Minister Syed Qaim Ali Shah but they

From Page 1 did neither attended calls nor called back till date. Henceforth, he (Chief of Army Staff) should play his role for improvement of situation in Sindh or else the ongoing situation would create more misunderstanding, hatred and premonitions, which would never be in the interest of the country. While addressing to the Chief of Army Staff General Rahil Shareef and Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) Director General, General Zaheer Ul Islam, Hussain said that the gap being created bwteen the Pakistan Army and the Mohajirs would not be in the interest of the country and hence they should take notice of victimization of the Mohajirs by the state. He said that there would be certain elements that would declare the appeals made to the Pakistan Army as undemocratic and in response to their objections, it would be said that the treatment done to the Mohajirs was worse than the dictatorial treatment and demanding the armed forces of the country for intervening into the matters that pertained to gross level violations of the laws was not undemocratic. He said that the armed forces had not only obligation of protecting the geographical boundaries of the country but they also had the responsibility of protecting the people in the country. Mohajirs were patriot but there had always been propaganda against their loyalty with the country while the Mohajirs did not even think of anything that could hurt the country. The ancestors of Mohajirs had sacrificed 2 million lives for the creation of Pakistan and during the war of 1971, they had fought against the enemies side by side of the Pakistan Army for saving the Pakistani troopers and the country. However, a false allegation was leveled against the Mohajirs for conspiring to create Jinnahpur, a separate homeland for the Mohajirs, which also proved false and baseless. Brig. (Retd) Imtaiaz had fully contradicted that claim. On those false charges, a Military operation was launched against the Mohajirs on the pretext of operation against 72 big fish.

K ARACHI —Administrator Karachi Rauf Akhtar Farooqui has said that traffic improvement Plan should be prepared for the Civic Center in which separate places should be allocated for parking whereas measures should be taken for uplifting of Civic Center. He said this in a directive to the departmental heads of Engineering and Transport and Communication Departments on Sunday. On this occasion Director General Engineering Department Niaz Ahmed Soomro, Senior Director Transport and Communication Muhammad Ather and other officers were also present. He said that a good number of citi-

zens visit Civic Center for their various works whereas the offices of Sindh Building Control Authority, Excise and Taxation, KESC and other departments also here due to which vehicles were parked around Civic Center in an unplanned manner which affects traffic on the University Road. He said that separate parking is made near central offices in whole world whereas central office of any organization shows its performance. Administrator Karachi directed that only those vehicles should be allowed to park on first floor of Civic Center which have been given parking permission here otherwise strict action

would be taken against relevant department. He also said that arrangements of cleanliness should be made around Civic Center. Officers of the departments were responsible for cleanliness condition in the offices. They should take measures for cleanliness and renovation in their offices so that employees working there could get better environment.He said that security arrangements were improved in central office however it should be enhanced further. Parking of motorcycles on various locations here would also be banned and separate parking place would be allocated for these.— AAP

demands made by the Taliban leadership were also conveyed by Professor Ibrahim to Maulana Sami ul Haq the chief of his own faction of JUI during telephonic conversation between the two on Sunday. The Taliban demands as some reports say include the release of all the Taliban prisoners held in various jails and detention centers, withdrawal of Army led security forces from the tribal belt specially the insurgency-hit areas and release of compensation to the affectees of the operations. Maulana Sami ul Haq has said certain foreign forces were hell bent to sabotage the peace dialogues process and the infamous pilot less US planes commonly known as drones kept hovering on the skies in North Waziristan agency forcing the negotiators to change the venue of the talks many times. The Interior Minister Chaudhry Nisar also talked to Maulana Sami ul Haq and expressed concern over the well-being of the negotiators who had not returned to NWA by that time. Interior minister said if any foreign force attempted to sabotage the peace process, that would be taken as direct enmity with Pakistan.

Indian HC eulogizes services of Didi Nirmala Deshpande

13 dead From Page 1

wounds raising the death toll in the incident to 13. Condition of some injured was stated to be critical. However, Home MinisHe demanded of the Chief of Army ter Balochistan Sarfraz Bugti Staff to form a Military Commission to said it was an act of terrorinvestigate the allegations against the ism. The exchange of fire took Mohajirs for conspiring to create the place between terrorists and Jinnahpur. local people. Sarfaraz Bugti He said that despite the fact that said that armed men attacked almost 15000 workers and sympathiz- a house near RD-238. As a ers of the MQM were killed extra-judi- result, six people including cially during that Military operation, women and children were he had asked his people to have pa- killed. Later, the tribesmen tience as the scheme of killing was part chased the terrorists and exof an agenda that was not owned by change of fire took place bePakistan Army but some officers had tween them near Jaffarabad. launched against them. A tribal man and two misHe said that the leaders of the creants were killed in the MQM had reminded Federal Interior shootout. Heavy contingent Minister of forming a monitoring com- of police and Levies reached mittee, which was opposed by Minis- the scene and brought the ter in Sindh Cabinet. The extra-judicial situation under control and killings of workers of the MQM could launched search operation. have prevented if the monitoring comTension and panic gripped mittee was formed. the area and dwellers of the He asked former President Asif Ali locality where the clash took Zardari to explain to how a long last- place were restricted to homes ing relationship was possible amid the due to heavy firing and unongoing situation when the workers certain law and order situation. of the MQM were deliberately victim- A case was registered against ized. MQM had declared Mohajirs as the armed men of both groups Urdu-speaking Sindhi but they were and police have started raids not yet accepted as Sindhi and the for their arrest.—INP Sindh government was tormenting the Mohajirs with full force. Sindh government was driving the Sindh toward division. Meanwhile, Muttahidda Qaumi Movement (MQM) Coordination Committee Deputy Convener Dr Khalid Maqbool Siddiqui said that Karachi Police was bent upon declaring the Mohajirs and the MQM as terrorists. “The fact was that Karachi Police was the strongest of all groups in the city that was minting money through extortion,” he alleged adding postings in Police were ordered under receipt of heavy sum of money in form of bribe. “Police minted Rupees 220 million through extortion per day. He alleged that the atrocities inflicted on Mohajirs by Karachi Police had reached the level of ‘No more Tolerance.’ He demanded of the Prime Minister, Federal Interior Minister and Chief of Army Staff to take notice of the atrocities of Karachi Police on innocent citizens.

Measures to be taken for uplifting Civic Center

Waziristan office. Prof Ibrahim and Maulana Yousaf Shah had also held a two-hour long meeting with the political agent of North Waziristan in Miranshah Mohammad Siraj and then left Tochi Fort for an undisclosed location reportedly in a convoy of three vehicles with Professor Ibrahim and coordinator Maulana Yousaf Shah saying the things would be cleared within couple of days. Muhammad Ibrahim while talking to media men in Mansehra prior to his departure for North Waziristan agency on Saturday had also described the recent talks between the negotiation teams of the governmental and Taliban as useful. He had said the issues raised at the first meeting from government side would be conveyed to Taliban leadership‚ while reservations expressed by the Taliban were presented before the government. Professor Ibrahim had also observed that Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif was serious and sincere in resolving the issue through talks. Reports said during the meeting on Sunday the government’s conditions were conveyed to the Taliban Shoora while the

STAFF REPORTER KARACHI—High Commissioner of India in Islamabad Dr T. C. A. Raghavan on Sunday eulogized the services of the peace activist Didi Nirmala Deshpande for bringing people of the both neighbouring countries, India and Pakistan, closer to each other and underlined the need for continuous spread of her message of love across South Asian region. He was speaking at the Plaque Unveiling Ceremony to dedicate a block of PILER Centre to Didi Nirmala Deshpande (1929-2008) who was a Member of the Indian Rajya Sabha (upper house) and dedicated advocate of peace between two countries i.e. India and Pakistan. The ceremony, organized by Pakistan Institute of Labour Education and Research (PILER) was attended by academicians, human rights and peace activists, social workers, trade union leaders and notables of the area. Earlier, speaking on the occasion, Karamat Ali, Executive Director of PILER said that Didi Nirmala Deshpande was equally admired in Pakistan because of her message of love and advocate of people-to-people contact. The government of Pakistan had conferred her the ‘Sitara-e-Imtiaz’ for her services for peace. B. M. Kutty of PILER recalled her services and said that at the time of World Social Forum in 2006 in Karachi, Pakistan government was reluctant to issue visas to the Indian participants. She personally came via Lahore to Islamabad and met with then President General Pervaiz Musharraf and on her request visas for Indian participants were issued by Pakistan government instantly. The Indian High Commissioner and his wife were gifted traditional Ajraks, books and shield.

The Consul General of the Federal Republic of Germany Dr.Tilo Klinner, hosted a dinner for delegates of the Karachi Literature Festival at a local hotel. Picture shows Ambassador Dr.Michael Koch, special Envoy of German Government for Afghanistan and Pakistan, PGBF, Mr.Qazi Sajid Ali, Mr.Byram D.Avari, Mrs.Luba Klinner, Ms.Amina Seyid, and diplomats from Germany and SriLanka

German envoy fetes KLF participants STAFF REPORTER KARACHI—Pakistan has a beauty that can best be seen in its culture and rich traditions. This was said by Consul General of the Federal Republic of Germany Dr Tilo Klinner at a dinner hosted by him for guests participating in the three-day 5th Karachi Literature Festival. The German diplomat said literature opens the horizons and expands the vision of humans, guiding them toward accommodation and harmony with their fellow beings and promoting peace. He added the Karachi Literature Festival Peace Prize 2014 is meant to recognise and honour such achievements. Dr

Klinner said the Peace Prize is joint project of the Consulate General of Germany in Karachi, the Embassy of Germany in Islamabad and the Karachi Literature Festival. It aims to recognise books promoting peace, international understanding and tolerance. It is awarded by a jury comprising eminent Pakistani academics and human rights activists and carries a prize of 3,000 euros. Special Envoy of the government of Federal Republic of Germany for Afghanistan/ Pakistan who has also served as German ambassador to Pakistan, Dr Michael Koch, said he was glad to be back among so many friends. He said books and literature bring out the best in mankind.


Curfew in IHK amid strike by freedom fighters SRINAGARL—Thousands of activists and placed their lead- independence

Man killed, as wedding party van overturns P ESHAWA R —A man was killed and 18 others including women and children injured as a van carrying wedding party guests overturned here on Sunday. Police said that a hiace carrying participants of the wedding ceremony turned turtle due to over speeding in Chamkani area of Peshawar. As a result of accident, one person was killed on the spot while 18 others including women and children sustained wounds. The injured people were shifted to hospital.—INP

DI Khan jail break accused held ABBOTTABAD—The Abbottabad police on Sunday arrested an accused involved in breaking Dera Ismail Khan Jail. The Abbottabad city police on secret information conducted a raid in main Havailian Town. During operation, an accused involved in breaking and fleeing from Dera Ismail Khan Jail was arrested. Police said that the detainee was imprisoned in DI Khan in a robbery case and he along with accomplices planned to break the jail helping several notorious criminals to escape.—INP

President leaves for China on Feb 17 ISLAMABAD—President Mamnoon Hussain will pay a two-day official tour to China on February 17 to discuss further development on KashgharGwadar economic corridor. During his two-day visit, the President would participate in the joint committee JCC. Sources told ONLINE Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif had already signed Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with China on the projects of economic corridor.—Online

Measures to be taken for uplifting Civic Center K ARACHI —Administrator Karachi Rauf Akhtar Farooqui has said that traffic improvement Plan should be prepared for the Civic Center in which separate places should be allocated for parking whereas measures should be taken for uplifting of Civic Center. He said this in a directive to the departmental heads of Engineering and Transport and Communication Departments on Sunday. On this occasion Director General Engineering Department Niaz Ahmed Soomro, Senior Director Transport and Communication Muhammad Ather and other officers were also present. He said that a good number of citizens visit Civic Center for their various works whereas the offices of Sindh Building Control Authority, Excise and Taxation, KESC and other departments also here due to which vehicles were parked around Civic Center in an unplanned manner which affects traffic on the University Road.—APP

SHANGLA: Heavy machinery is being used to clear Poran Road after heavy snowfall.

Shariah already exists in country: Gilani

BD war crimes accused Jamaat leader dies

Indian troops fanned out across Indian-held Kashmir (IHK) on Sunday, detaining about 200 freedom activists to prevent protests during a three-day strike to mark the execution anniversaries of two KashmirI leaders in New Delhi. Many parts of the Himalayan region were under curfew, with major roads blocked by razor wire and barricades, as authorities sought to prevent anti-India protests and possible violence, Inspector General Abdul Gani Mir said. Wireless Internet services were shut down. Shops and businesses remained closed in Srinagar, the main city in India-held Kashmir. Most people stayed indoors while police and paramilitary soldiers patrolled the lakeside city’s deserted streets. Authorities detained about 200 known

withdrawal of troops from militancy hit areas and it is up to the government either to accept or not these demands. He said that PPP and other political parties gave mandate of peace talks to the government and now we have to wait for the results of dialogues with banned outfit. Gilani said that he had talked to Prime Minister Mian Nawaz Sharif six months ago asking him to play his role for release of his abducted son Ali Haider Gilani. He hoped that now when the issue of release

Arson in Germany

the top leaders of the Jamaate-Islami, who was charged with crimes against humanity committed during the 1971 war, TEHRAN—Iran on Sunday denounced what it died here on Sunday. called Pakistan’s inability to secure its own borYusuf (87) was rushed to ders after five Iranian soldiers were kid-napped Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujib and taken into its eastern neighbour by extremMedical University hospital ists. “We are unhappy with the Pakistani govSunday morning after he fell ill ernment over the abduction of our guards and their in his prison cell at Gazipur’s transfer to Pakistan,” Fars news agency re-ported Kashimpur Jail, Dhaka Central quoting police chief Esmail Ahmadi-Moghadam Jail Senior Supervisor Farman as saying. Ali said. He died soon after he Jaish-ul Adl, the rebel group formed in 2012 was admitted to hospital, Ali whose name in Arabic means Army of Justice, said. has said it was be-hind the kidnapping in Iran’s Yusuf, accused of heading restive southeast province of Sistan-Baluchestan. the auxiliary force Razakar The group posted pictures on its Facebook Bahini, died of cardiac arrest. page it said were of the soldiers, hand-cuffed and “The Jamaat leader died of car- being held in an unknown location. diac arrest,” BSMMU director The foreign ministry in Te-hran summoned A.M. Bhuiyan was quoted as saying by the bdnews24.com. Arrested on May 12 last year, Yusuf was indicted by the International Crimes Tribunal2 on 15 war crimes charges, including killing, genocide and trol of oceans in the region. arson. His defence team had China’s claims had “cre- argued that Yusuf should be ated uncertainty, insecurity and granted bail immediately beKABUL—Afghanistan has improved voting proinstability”, Russel said. cause of his old age.—INP cedures to ensure April’s presidential election China, the Philippines, is not plagued by the complaints of irregulariVietnam, Taiwan, Malaysia and ties and fraud that marred the last vote in 2009, Brunei all claim parts of the sea a senior official said on Sunday. that provides 10 percent of gloBut Yousof Nooristani, head of bal fish catches and carries $5 Afghanistan’s Independent Election Commistrillion in ship-borne trade. sion (IEC), said he did worry that violence could China also railed against disrupt the voting in the first democratic leaderwhat it called “outrageous” comments on Friday by Phil- CAIRO—Egyptian authorities ship transition in Afghanistan’s history. “We ippine President Benigno on Sunday accused the ousted have learned good lessons from past mistakes Aquino, who compared the president’s Muslim Brother- ... or weaknesses,” Nooristani told Reuters. “We have adopted a number of mechanisms maritime dispute with appease- hood of forming a “military ment of Nazi Germany before wing” to stage attacks on secu- to prevent or mitigate fraud. It will not be posrity forces in a southern prov- sible to rule it out, but we will try to mitigate as World War Two. China claims about 90 per- ince, as months-long street ral- much as possible,” he said. New measures incent of the 3.5 million square lies by the group’s supporters clude improved training for electoral officials km (1.35 million square miles) wane but low-level violence to deal with fraud, more secure handling of votSouth China Sea, depicting steadily rises. Security forces ing materials and simpler ballots, a key issue in what it sees as its area on maps have been arresting the admin- a country where just 28 percent of people are with a so-called nine-dash line, istrators of Facebook pages literate. The polls occur at a delicate moment looping far out over the sea accused of inciting attacks for Afghanistan, as NATO nations withdraw despite ongoing violence and a standoff continues against police.—AP from south China.—AP

the PM would remember his son also, he added. The former premier said PPP government during its era gave provincial status to GB besides facilitating people with equal rights enjoyed by people of other provinces of country. Speaking on the occasion CM GB Mehdi Shah said that PPP led government spared no efforts to resolve problems faced by the people and it was hoped that his party will clean sweep in general elections scheduled in December 2014.—INP

Boy 13, held for killing Pakistani mom, kids

China rejects US criticism on South China Sea

a 13-year-old boy has been arrested for setting fire to an asylum home in Hamburg that killed a woman from Pakistan and her two children, German media reported on Sunday. Police spokesman Andreas Schoepflin said the boy, who is a member of the city’s youth fire department, was identified based on witness accounts and video footage by a surveillance camera. He admitted to the crime when confronted by police Friday night and was taken to a hospital for psychiatric evaluation. Schoepflin said the boy didn’t have any anti-foreigner motives. Besides the three deaths, 27 residents were injured in the fire at the asylum home on Wednesday.—Online

ing peace and development in the Asia-Pacific after a senior U.S. official said concern was mounting over China’s claims in the South China Sea. “These actions are not constructive”, Hong Lei, a Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman, said in a statement issued late on Saturday. “We urge the U.S. to hold a rational and fair attitude, so as to have a constructive role in the peace and development of the region, and not the opposite,” Lei said. U.S. Assistant Secretary of State for East Asian and Pacific Affairs Danny Russel told a congressional testimony on Wednesday the United States had “growing concerns” that China’s maritime claims were an effort to gain creeping con-

BEIJING—China has accused BERLIN—German police say the United States of undermin-

leader Mohammed Maqbool Butt was hanged in the same New Delhi jail after being convicted of killing an intelligence officer. Since 1989, an armed uprising and an ensuing crackdown in the region have killed an estimated 68,000 people. Insurgents renewed demands over the weekend that the two men’s remains, buried within the jail compound, be returned to the region for burial. ‘The shutdown is called for pressing our demand for return of the mortal remains of our martyrs,’’ separatist leader Syed Ali Geelani said in a statement issued before he was detained at Srinagar’s airport Saturday after returning from New Delhi. Kashmir is divided between Hindu-dominated India and Muslim-majority Pakistan, but is claimed by both nations.—AP

Iran slams Pakistan over border guards abduction

LAHORE—Former Prime Min- lease of Taliban prisoners and of Taliban prisoners was raised, DHAKA—AKM Yusuf, one of ister and Pakistan People’s Party (PPP) senior leader Syed Yusaf Raza Gilani has said Shariah already existed in the country in the form of 1973 Constitution as no legislation could be made repugnant to the Islamic teachings. Talking to media persons at his Lahore residence after his meeting with Chief Minister Gilgit-Balistan Syed Mehdi Shah on Sunday, Yusaf Raza Gilani said that the Taliban had come up with three major demands including enforcement of Shariah in the country, re-

ers under house arrest, a police officer said on condition of anonymity because he was not authorised to speak with reporters. Kashmiri insurgents, who have long demanded the region be given independence or be allowed to merge with neighbouring Pakistan, were incensed when Mohammed Afzal Guru was secretly hanged Feb 9 last year in a New Delhi jail for involvement in a 2001 Parliament attack that killed 14 people, including five gunmen. Most people in Kashmir believe Guru was not given a fair trial, and the covert execution led to days of violent anti-India protests in the Muslim-majority region, where anti-India sentiment runs deep. The execution refreshed anger sparked in 1984, when pro-

Pakistan’s charge d’affaires, demanding that Islamabad “act firmly against the leaders and mem-bers of the terrorist group who have fled into Pakistan”, media reports said. Home to a large Sunni minority and ethnic Baluch in a predominantly Shiite country, SistanBaluchestan prov-ince has been the scene of unrest in recent years. Jaish-ul Adl said in November it assassinated a local prosecutor, and in October it ambushed Iranian border guards, killing 14. In response, Iranian authorities executed 16 “rebels” eight Sunni insurgents and eight drug traffickers. Another Sunni militant group Jundallah (Soldiers of God), whose leader Abdolmalek Rigi was hanged in June 2010, has also attacked civil-ians and officials in SistanBaluchestan.—AP

Afghanistan says set to ensure elections avoid past problems

Egypt accuses Islamist group of staring armed wing

between Washington and President Hamid Karzai over a pact to permit some U.S. troops to stay into next year. Officials say they have been working to avoid the problems that married the August 2009 polls, which brought Karzai a second term amid allegations of vote-stuffing, intimidation and interference from both local and foreign officials. A scheduled run-off that year was canceled when Abdullah Abdullah, a former foreign minister and current contender, dropped out due to what he called a lack of a credible vote. In one improvement, Nooristani said, voting materials will not be delivered to some 6,754 polling centers across the country until shortly before the election to prevent tampering. Unlike the last election, when some voting took place in private homes, polling centers will be in government buildings such as schools or clinics and votes will be counted on-site. Ballot papers will be simpler, he said, in part because there are only 11 candidates now compared to 42 in 2009.—AP

US Army retains report on massacre of 16 Afghan civilians WASHINGTON—The U.S. Army is refus- combat outpost in southern Afghanistan. ing to release its investigation into the officers who commanded Staff Sgt. Robert Bales just before the former Joint Base Lewis-McChord soldier slipped out of his combat outpost and murdered 16 Afghan civilians two years ago. The Defense Department this week denied Freedom of Information Act requests from The News Tribune and KUOW seeking the investigation, which was announced by Gen. John Allen, the former top U.S. officer in Afghanistan, soon after the killings, Press TV reported. The denial says the document is not releasable because the Army has not taken “final action” on Bales’ court-martial. His trial concluded in August when he was sentenced to life in prison after pleading guilty to murdering civilians in two solitary nighttime forays from his

Bales is in confinement at Fort Leavenworth, Kansas. “In my capacity as the Initial Denial Authority, by withholding this information, I am fully denying your request,” wrote U.S. Central Command chief of staff Maj. Gen. Michael Garrett in a letter to The News Tribune. The News Tribune is appealing the FOIA denial. After Bales’ court-martial, The News Tribune and KUOW submitted FOIA requests to the Army seeking what is known as a command climate investigation. The Army carried out that inquiry to assess whether senior soldiers around Bales could have prevented the crimes. “I will be satisfied when I get the report that we have looked closely at the potential contributing factors that might have permitted this event to have unfolded tragically,” Allen told reporters in

March 2012, two weeks after the killings. Similar inquiries for other war crimes have led to discipline, such as a 2011 investigation into Lewis-McChord Stryker soldiers who murdered three Afghan civilians during their deployment. Their platoon and company-level officers received reprimands in a report that was also critical of their brigade commander. The News Tribune obtained the command climate report on the so-called “kill team” through a source. It was released to reporters who submitted FOIA requests for it about six months after the conviction of “kill team” ringleader former Staff Sgt. Calvin Gibbs. In September, The News Tribune received a response indicating its request for the Bales report was moving forward. In November, the newspaper received another letter indicating the request would

be processed through U.S. Central Command instead of the Army office that initially accepted it. Central Command oversees military operations in the Middle East. The I Corps at Lewis-McChord remains responsible for Bales’ court-martial. I Corps spokesman Col. Dave Johnson said court-martial convening authority Lt. Gen. Robert Brown has not taken “final action” on the case in considering the sentence, supporting evidence and any appeals for clemency. Because of the complexity of the case, it could take another two months for the corps to complete the paperwork. The other major Army inquiry into the Bales massacre is a 2,800-page criminal investigation that The News Tribune is also pursuing through the Freedom of Information Act. It is unclear who was reviewed in the command climate report, which was not dis-

Published by: Zahid Malik from Ali Akbar House Markaz G-8, Islamabad and printed by Gauhar Zahid Malik at Al Umar Printers

cussed much at Bales’ court-martial or at his pre-trial hearings. The highest-ranking soldiers from the deployment who testified in open court were Bales’ first sergeant from his LewisMcChord Stryker battalion, the Special Forces captain who commanded the combat outpost where Bales last served and the Special Forces chief warrant officer who was the outpost’s No. 2 commander. An Alaska-based former brigade commander also testified generally about the security threats soldiers faced in the area where Bales was serving. Bales, formerly of Lake Tapps, was on his fourth deployment with Lewis-McChord’s 3rd Brigade, 2nd Infantry Division at the time of the killings. In 2012, his unit was splintered into small groups across southern Afghanistan supporting Special Forces teams.—NNI


‘China, Pakistan and Afghanistan: Regional Dynamic Future Prospects’

Healthy sleep key to ward off depression later

A

genetic study of adult twins and a community-based study of adoles cents has reported novel links between sleep duration and depression. Don’t sleep deprive yourself as it may be a precursor for major depression as you reach adulthood - occurring before other symptoms of major depression and additional mood disorders hit you hard. A genetic study of adult twins and a community-based study of adolescents has reported novel links between sleep duration and depression. Both short and excessively long sleep durations appear to activate genes related to depressive symptoms. “We were surprised that the heritability of depressive symptoms in twins with very short sleep was nearly twice the heritability in twins sleeping normal amounts of time,” said Nathaniel Watson, associate professor of neurology and co-director of the University of Washington Medicine Sleep Centre in Seattle. This new research emphasises that we can make an investment in our health by prioritising sleep, added M. Safwan Badr, president, American Academy of Sleep Medicine. A study of 1,788 adult twins is the first to demonstrate a gene by environment interaction between self-reported habitual sleep duration and depressive symptoms.

Results suggest that sleep durations outside the normal range increase the genetic risk for depressive symptoms. Among twins with a normal sleep duration of seven to 8.9 hours per night, the total heritability of depressive symptoms was 27 percent. However, the genetic influence on depressive symptoms increased to 53 per cent among twins with a short sleep duration of five hours per night and 49 percent among those who reported sleeping 10 hours per night. Another study of 4,175 individuals between age 11 and 17 is the first to document reciprocal effects for major depression and short sleep duration among adolescents using prospective data. Sleeping six hours or less per night increases the risk for major depression, which, in turn, increases the risk for decreased sleep among adolescents, said the study. Optimising sleep may be one way to maximise the effectiveness of treatments for depression such as psychotherapy. “Healthy sleep is a necessity for physical, mental and emotional well-being,” said Badr. According to Robert E. Roberts, professor of behavioural sciences at University of Texas, “sleep disturbance and hours of sleep should be part of the medical history of adolescents to ascertain risk”. The studies were published in the journal Sleep.

Pakistan’s concerns centred on Afghanistan security, stability CITY REPORTER I SLAMABAD —Pakistan’s principal

ZUBAIR QURESHI R AWALPINDI —IslamabadRawalpindi transport service (Tabeer Transport Service) exclusively for women commuters is being launched shortly (Feb 17). The project is being carried out on special directions of Chief Minister Punjab Mian Muhammad Shahbaz Sharif. Induction of road hostesses in this regard has already been completed, said an official of the Rawalpindi Transport Authority while talking to Pakistan Observer Sunday. The step will ensure the provincial government’s promise of empowering women, he further said. Abrar Associates, RTA (Regional Transport Authority) and ZonG have

joined hands to launch the Women Exclusive Van service – “Tabeer” for the commuting women of Islamabad/ Rawalpindi. Awais Manzoor Tarar, Secretary RTA when contacted, said, “With the very first initiative of its kind taken by private sector, RTA in collaboration with AlAbrar Associates and support of Zong wishes to take the endeavors of Government of Punjab for women’s empowerment to a new level. For the purposes 12 exclusive branded vans will facilitate women, in not only commuting between the twin cities. Esna Bhatti, Product Manager Flutter, ZonG says “We are grateful to RTA, AlAbrar Associates and the Government of Punjab in turn-

lated to Afghan Taliban-Iran relations and peace dialogue with Pakistani Taliban, the Senator said that it seems that the Taliban groups are willing to keep peace-

Housewife puts up good fight against maid’s ‘relative’

R AWA L P I N D I — T h i c k l y

ing the Tabeer project into a reality. Since ZonG Flutter is all about females, the project was a natural fit with the values that ZonG Flutter stands for. Hence, we decided to become the principal sponsors of the project”. Ali Hamdani, CEO Al-Abrar Associates said, “We are pleased to collaborate with ZonG, Government of Punjab and RTA to bring together this very special project. Al-Abrar, Government of Punjab and ZonG Flutter share a common goal of facilitating the women of Pakistan. There could be no better way of empowering the women of Punjab than launching Project Tabeer, women exclusive van service providing them a safe and comfortable commute facility to get a step closer to their dreams and ambitions.

dialogue, convening in Islamabad, in May 2014. The other issues of mutual interest including the situation arising out of the 2014 projected withdrawal of

Dacoity attempt

STAFF REPORTER

Vans ready to ply exclusively for women

Institute Senator and his

concerns centered on security and role of stability in Afghanistan, primarily to ensure that there would be no vacuum nor an ‘action replay’ of the 1989 exit of the Soviet Red Army, which had resulted in a long, debilitating civil war plus the continued presence of 2.5 million Afghan refugees in Pakistan. This was stated by Chairman Senate Defense Committee, Senator Mushahid Hussain Sayed while addressing a seminar under the title of “China, Pakistan and Afghanistan: Regional Dynamic, Future Prospects,” organized by the Regional Peace Institute (RPI), here on Sunday. Senator Mushahid Hussain also briefed the participants about his recent visits to Afghanistan, meetings with Afghan leaders including President Karzai, presidential candidate Dr Abdullah Abdullah, and visit to Brussels where he interacted with NATO deputy Secretary General Alexander Vershbow. He informed the participants that Pakistan-China Institute, under his chairmanship, had organized the first- Special Advisor to PM Sartaj Aziz speaks during a seminar on “China, Pakistan and Afghanistan: Regional ever trilateral dialogue of think Dynamics, Future Prospects” organized by RPI at a local hotel. , Khurshid Ahmad Kasuri and Lt Gen (Retd) Ihsan tanks of Pakistan, China and are also seen in the picture.—PO photo by Sultan Bashir Afghanistan at Beijing in August 2006 with the cooperation of the Pakistan-China Institute in pro- foreign forces from Afghanistan, the ful ties with all neighbours, which China Institute of International Stud- moting people-to-people ties be- interests and role of Pakistan and is a positive development. Besides ies, a think tank of the Chinese Min- tween Pakistan and China, and China in such a scenario, as well the Senator Mushahid Hussain and hoped that cooperation between Pakistan-China Economic Corridor Madam Chen Huaifan, the seminar istry of Foreign Affairs. Earlier, one of the key speakers PCI and CPAPD would be in the context of President Xi was addressed by Khurshid of the seminar, Madam Chen strengthened at the institutional Jinping’s concept of a Central Asia Mahmood Kasuri, Shamshad Huaifan, led a delegation of the level. On the occasion, Senator Economic Belt also came under dis- Ahmad Khan, Lt Gen (R) Talat Masood, Lt Gen (R) Asad Durrani, Chinese People’s Association for Mushahid invited CPAPD to par- cussion. While answering a question re- Wang Zuoquan, and others. Peace and Disarmament (CPAPD) ticipate in the second security

Crack down on compressor users demanded Workers decorating a Valentine Day stall at a local hotel.

to visit the Pakistan-China and had a meeting with Mushahid Hussain Sayed team. She appreciated the

populated areas like Muhammad-abad, Ali-abad and Ala-abad of Rawalpindi Cantt are facing crisis like situation in terms of supply of gas. Gas is also not available even when CNG stations remain closed therefore preparing meal has become a difficult task for every home. Mothers are forced to send their school children to schools without break fast and even at lunch and dinner hours they have to purchase chapattis and nauns from the nanbais. Private ovens owners are minting money by raising the prices of chapatti and nauns from Rs 7 to Rs 10. People have demanded of district management to take notice of the prevailing situation and ensure supply of gas to domestic consumers in full pressure to alleviate their difficulties. They disclosed that people have installed compressors in each street to meet their needs and these compressors reduce the gas pressure level to zero for the majority of population of these localities.

ZUBAIR QURESHI I SLAMABAD —Khurshid Begum, a resident of G-11/1 got injured while resisting a woman dacoit who appeared on behalf of Khurshid Begum’s regular maid. However despite bruises and injuries she did not let the female dacoit take away a penny from her house. The story serves a good lesson for all those simple good-natured housewives who readily trust unknown maids or strangers and let them in. According to details, Yasmin the accused entered Khurshid Begum’s house early morning last Saturday and on inquiry told that she was sent by Jannat Bibi the regular housemaid. Khurshid Begum, mother of two grown up boys was by herself at that time. While talking to Pakistan Observer, Khurshid Begum said it was a surprise for her that Jannat who was on leave that day never mentioned about her relative Yasmin. “However, I asked her to sit and wait. Meanwhile, I took up the receiver of the telephone as I had to call the MNA of our city (Gojra, Faisalabad) who had promised to get us gas connection,” Khurshid Begum said. Yasmin sensing that she was

going to call police at once took a sharpedged knife out of her clothes and ordered Khurshid Begum to put down the receiver. “She started hitting me in the face and I fell on the floor. Upon my screams, she said she would kill me if I raised a voice and asked me to go into the room from the lounge.” It was good luck of Khurshid Begum that the driver of a Nescom’s water tanker heard her screaming and came to the door. On his arrival Yasmin fled from the scene from the backyard door along with a male counterpart who was waiting outside. Khurshid Begum said Jannat is her trusted maid and working at her house for last 15 years. She denies having any relation with Yasmin. Khurshid Begum whose upper lip was badly wounded in the scuffle and face swollen thanks Almighty for keeping her safe. Station House Officer (SHO) of the Women Police Station, Sitara Market G-7 when contacted said police had registered an FIR against the accused and her male accomplice under CrPC 382 and 512 and investigation is underway. When asked why the case was registered so late the SHO said the complainant first approached other police stations and it took her a week to trace the Women Police Station.

UNESCO’S historic urban landscape framework’s implementation in Rawalpindi C ITY REPORTER I SLAMABAD —A seminar was held at the Ministry of Planning, Development and Reform on UNESCO’s Historic Urban Landscape (HUL) approach between the National College of Arts administration, UNESCO representatives and the Ministry of Planning, Development and Reform chiefs. The seminar was hosted and organized by Young Development Fellows at the Ministry and was headed

by chief water sector, Mr. Naseer Gilani. Presiding at the event was Prof. Ahsan Iqbal, As chief guest, Urban Planning and Housing chief, Dr. Ayesha Pamela rogers – UNESCO and Dr. Rom Von Oers –WHITRAPShanghai. The seminar started with opening remarks from National College of Arts Dean, Mr. Tariq. He collaborated on the history and formulation of the college at Rawalpindi. He stated that the historic cultural project in Rawalpindi grew out of their commit-

ment and love for the city. During his speech he said, “It felt as an obligation to give something back to the city where we live”. Furthermore, he mentioned that conserving these historic monuments will also benefit the community that inhabits the area. After an elaborate presentation on various UNESCO world heritage conservation projects and HUL, Dr. Oers and Dr. Rogers covered the past, present and future on our cultural sites. The ceremony was concluded by

Professor Ahsan Iqbal, Deputy Chairman at the Ministry of Planning, Development and Reform. He thanked the UNESCO and NCA team on putting forward a project to protect the cultural and historical heritage of city of Rawalpindi. He said that this project is a step to understand various development aspects with the Vision 2025. In his speech, Prof. Ahsan Iqbal said, “With rising global culture, we are prone towards a Mac-culture; however it is adversely important to also preserve

our local heritage”. Thus, in the future, an urban planning center will be developed at the Planning Commission. It will coordinate at the national level to preserve our urban heritage and growth. Pakistan is fastest urbanizing country in South Asia. The population pressure is pushing Urban Growth in unplanned direction which is likely to turn our cities chaotic. To avoid such scenario it is important that we focus on urban planning and blend modern approaches with traditional idea to preserve character of our cities.

Two workers died in capital STAFF REPORTER ISLAMABAD—Worker found dead in his room in the federal capital on Sunday. Carpenter Pervez Akhtar resident of Toba Tek Singh was found dead in his room in street 19 of Sector E-7. According to police, he went to sleep at night after finishing his duty but could not wake up in the morning. Body of deceased has been shifted to Pakistan Institute of Medical Sciences (PIMS) for autopsy. Police registered First Information Report (FIR) and started further investigations. In another incident, another worker fell down from ladder and succumbed to injuries in a plaza near Diplomatic Enclave area of the federal capital.

Bikes, vehicles impounded STAFF REPORTER ISLAMABAD—Islamabad Capital Territory Police on Sunday impounded 35 bikes and five vehicles during general hold up, a police spokesman said. Senior police officials of Islamabad directed all heads of police stations to ensure effective security and patrolling measures in their respective areas.


Zohr

06:20 01:30 04:15 07:30

Brothers in Islam establish

February 11 PAKISTAN National Council of the Arts, Ministry of Information, Broadcasting & National Heritage has arranged *”Mehfil-eSama”*on Tuesday. The event will be held at 7:00 pm at PNCA Auditorium, F-5/1, Islamabad. Renowned Qawal from all over Pakistan will participate in the event.

27 Afghan nationals held under Foreign Act STAFF REPORTER R AWALPINDI —Rawalpindi police during search operations have arrested 27 Afghan nationals under section 14 of foreign act while nine cases have been registered against them. According to Rawalpindi police spokesman, search operations on the special directives of Regional Police Officer (RPO) Rawalpindi Akhtar Umar Hayat Lalika against Afghan nationals residing illegally here, are being conducted in different areas of the city under the supervision of Senior Superintendent Police (SSP) Operations. Police have netted 27 Afghan nationals during last 24 hours from the areas of Sadiqabad, Pirwadhai and Saddar Baroni police stations. The spokesman informed that total 259 persons, 76 hotels and 163 houses were checked by police teams during the search operation on Saturday night.

Working women face accommodation problem in twin cities ISLAMABAD—Lack of proper hostel fa- problem they encounter is how to find a students and working women face mul- commodation”, said Nazia Mehmoob more and more women are leaving their cilities force a large number of single working women opt for private accommodations in the twin cities. The women employed in different government and private organisations are facing accommodation problem as the few private hostels in the twin cities are not only overcrowded but also very expensive. These working women and young girls came from far-flung villages in search of jobs and for studying in better educational institutions but the first

suitable shelter for living. Ferhat Fatima a single working lady at zero point while lamenting this situation said that more often, she has to manage in an untidy tiny rooms as it is quite difficult for a girl to find a reasonable living place at affordable rates. Most of the women do not tell their families about the problem of accommodation in the city, fearing that their family would simply ask them to quit their jobs, she added. Away from family members, these

tiple problems ranging from accommodation to cultural adjustments. Asima, who came to Rawalpindi from southern Punjab in search of a job said that it is a gigantic task especially for girls to find a comfortable place for living, adding that away from home, working women face many physiological, cultural and social problems. “Living in hostel, one has to adjust in changed atmosphere and find hosts of problems like unwelcome room mates, unhygienic food and substandard ac-

CITY REPORTER R AWA L P I N D I —Education Wing of City Traffic Police (CTP), Rawalpindi under a special awareness campaign gave a briefing to 8980 citizens and drivers on traffic rules and road safety during January. Chief Traffic Officer (CTO), Superintendent Police Syed Ishtiaq Hussain Shah told CTP is educating the citizens about the traffic rules to ensure safety for all road users. He said, Education Wing of CTP, under its campaign launched to educate the citizens, was visiting different ar-

eas of the city. Lectures were delivered through multimedia, public address system and pamphlets were distributed aimed at creating awareness about road safety and traffic rules, the CTO said. More than 4000 pamphlets were distributed. Over 2700 students were educated about traffic rules during the period. Similarly, over 800 drivers of public service vehicles were given briefing on traffic rules and road safety. Radio programmes also aired in January to educate the citizens on traffic rules and regulations, he added. Syed Ishtiaq Hussain said

that the drive was launched to ensure safe driving on the city roads and to make the journey more safe and secure. He said, traffic rules must be observed on the roads as these are for the safety of the drivers and other road users as well. The CTO informed that special campaigns were launched in the past by the traffic police to educate road users especially motorists about observance of traffic rules which are for their own safety. He asked the road users and drivers to follow traffic rules, which make the journey on roads more safe and secure.

Eight SHOs issued show cause notices RAWALPINDI —Regional Police Officer from RPO. SHO Jatli also received 25,000 cash Rawalpindi Akhter Umer Hayat lalika has issued show cause notices to eight Station House Officers (SHOs) of Rawalpindi region on poor performance in a special campaign launched to net the Proclaimed Offenders (POs). SHO Murree, SHO Cantt, SHO Westridge, SHO Kallar Syedan, SHO Kotli Sattian, SHO City, Ex SHO New Town and SHO Perwadhai have been issued notices while the prizes were also given to the police officials who showed good performance in the campaign. SHO Gujar Khan Mirza Zaman Khan got cash prize of 50,000 and appraisal certificate

prize and appraisal certificate. SDPO Gujar Khan received appraisal certificate on good performance. The police officials have also been directed to improve their performance so that the lawbreakers could be sent behind the bars and the citizens could be provided relief. Meanwhile, the RPO has changed four SHOs of different Police Stations. New appointed SHOs include Inspector Ishtiaq Cheema, SHO Pirwadhai, Inspector Tahir Mahmood SHO Westridge, Inspector Muhammad Khan, SHO Kotli Sattian and Inspector Khalid Satti, SHO City.—APP

R AWALPINDI —Rawalpindi

Rs108.7 for potable water schemes STAFF REPORTER RAWALPINDI—The government of Punjab has approved a grant of Rs108.7 million for installation and repairing of filtration plants for the provision of clean potable water. The provincial government has sought suggestions from administrations of all districts of Punjab for this project and rural areas will be given preference in the provision of the facilities. According to reports, this fund was approved to change and repair broken water supply lines and change filters of filtration plants. This decision was made on the increasing complaints of supply of contaminated drinking water to the residents. The situation was causing spread of abdominal diseases among the residents of both civic and rural areas.

homes in search of employment in big cities as well as urban and rural industrial clusters. One of the main difficulties faced by such women is lack of safe and conveniently located accommodation. The PYHA being concerned about the difficulties faced by such working women, we unveiled a plan to establish female hostels in federal capital to ensuring safe and comfortable living conditions for women working outside their homes.—APP

CTP educates drivers to ensure road safety

Police arrest eight lawbreakers Police have arrested eight lawbreakers and seized 435 grams charras, 524 bottles of liquor and one pistol 30bore with 24 rounds from the possession of the accused. According to details, RA Bazaar police netted Muhammad Yasir and Saqib for possessing 24 liquor bottles. Jatli police apprehended Fida Hussain and recovered 500 liquor bottles. Other accused were rounded up for having illegal weapon and drugs.—APP

student of Private Law College. Irum Ikram, student of a college in F-6, said that she failed to get a room in her college hostel. “It is quite difficult for a student to find a reasonable living place at affordable rates as the private hostels have been charging Rs 6,000 to Rs 10,000 for a single bed accommodation,” she added. When contacted, Pakistan Youth hostels Association (PYHA) official he said with the progressive change in the socio-economic fabric of the country

Folk Artist Mustafa Lohar performs during a folk music evening organized by the Institute for Preservation of Arts & Culture at Kuch Khaas.—PO photo by Sultan Bashir

Sewage system speaks of negligence R AWALPINDI —The Gutters on degree college road near Government Post Graduate College, Asghar Mall have been overflowing for the past many days while WASA officials has done nothing to address the problem. The area has been submerged by dirty water and giving stinking smell for the residents in the locality. Talking to APP here on Sunday, Raja Mehboob a shopkeeper in the area said that sewage had inundated streets, creating problems for people. He said that choked gutters had made their lives miserable. Despite repeated complaints to the authorities nothing has been done and situation is aggravating day by day.—APP

Mureer Chowk project STAFF REPORTER

Activists of APML lighting candles for former president Gen (R) Pervez Musharraf outside the NPC.

Tourists throng hills to enjoy snowfall ISLAMABAD—The snowfall in Murree and surrounding hills on Thursday has attracted a large number of tourists from different parts of the country. Although there were no vacations, but still a large number of people specially from urban areas of Punjab and Karachi travelled to Murree to enjoy the snowfall. Traffic jams were witnessed at various places on the road leading to the hilly station. The resorts including Bhurban, New Murree, Kashmir Point, Pindi Point, Mall Road and Ayubia were packed with tourists. Galyaat, Hazara and Bhurbhan, received more snow as compared to Murree city. All restaurants were packed with tourists and the demand of woollies, has also gone up as mercury has gone below freezing point. A great rush was observed at hotels and place

for eatables, people were enjoying hot food and hot drinks to keep themselves warm. Businessmen and shopkeepers of hilly resorts were happy in view of increased business activity. Sameer Ali, a visitor from Lahore while talking to APP said, Murree had all facilities for enjoyment. “I am here today with my family and enjoying this awesome weather”, he added. The local administration should develop these areas further with additional facilities to attract visitors and promote tourism, he said. Another tourist, Waqas Anwar from Karachi complained that eatables, woollies and other accessaries available here to beat the cold weather are too much expensive. The shopkeepers are exploiting the situation and fleecing the customers, he said.—APP

RAWALPINDI—In the wake of Metro Bus Service project in the garrison city, the city administration has decided to complete second phase of Mureer Chowk expansion project till March 31. Under the revised plan, work on the pilings has been started. According to Rawalpindi Development Authority (RDA) officials, the work on the six pilings will be completed within 15 days and then walls constructed around them will be demolished.

Sub-standard water

Legal action to be taken against companies STAFF REPORTER ISLAMABAD—Ministry of Science & Technology has (MoST) asked Pakistan Standards & Quality Control Authority (PSQCA) to establish a coordination mechanism with PCRWR and keep informing the Ministry about legal action against all those bottled water brands whose samples are found sub-standard. Pakistan Council of Research in Water Resources (PCRWR), under the administrative control of MoST, is conducting regular monitoring of Mineral/ Bottled Water Samples on quarterly basis. According to official data available, for the quarter, April-June 2013, 86 samples of Mineral water brands were collected from different cities including Islamabad, Rawalpindi, Lahore, Faisalabad,Sialkot, D.G Khan, D.I Khan, Multan, Bahawalpur, Tandojam, Karachi, Quetta,and Peshawar. Comparison of analytical findings with permissible limits of PSQCA had revealed that 27 brands including Elixir, Natur Aqua, Aqua

Safe, Best Nation, Al Sana, Oxigyzer, Lock, PanPura, Kalash Pure Water, Premier Pure Water, Safi Mineral Water, NN Welfare, Aqua Royal, Water Empire, Water Plus, Berg, Lite Wave, Oslo, Zindagi, Mathar, Best Water, Sea Breeze, Cool, Kallan Water, Aqua National, Active and Sunlay were unsafe chemically or microbiologically or both. While ,during July-September 2013, 84 samples of Mineral/Bottled water brands were collected, out of which 21 brands namely Crystal Pure Water, Kalash Pure Water, Sparkle, Kinley, Best Nation, Al-Saudia, Naimat, Lock, Aqua Nation, Cool, Bliss Water, Union, Classic, Active, A.R Water, Verbena, Khaleej, Best Water, Ideal Life, Miracle and Al-Habib were found unsafe chemically or microbiologically or both. The quarterly monitoring report (April-June, 2013) has been sent to the Chief Secretaries of all the provinces with the request to take legal action against the substandard brands, official sources at PCRWR told.

Youth participating enthusiastically in Festival STAFF REPORTER RAWALPINDI—District Convener Punjab Youth Festival Sardar Naseem has said that Punjab youth are participating enthusiastically in the festival. He was addressing at district level competition of Milli songs and poetry un-

der the auspices of Rawalpindi Arts Council here which was attended by the position holders of Tehsil Rawalpindi, Gujar Khan, Kahuta, Kaller Sydan, Taxila, Murree and Kotli Sattian. Member National Assembly Tahira Aurangzeb, Member Punjab Assembly Raja

Lack of animals, security at Marghazar Zoo I SLAMABAD —The visitors have expressed grave concern over lack of animals and security arrangements at Marghazar Zoo (Islamabad Zoo), and called the attention of the high-ups of the Capital Development Authority (CDA) towards the matter.

The visitors said that there was no tiger, lion and giraffe in the zoo to attract the children. They said that they brought their kids to the zoo for infotainment and outing but they refused to stay in there as they found nothing of their interest

there. The visitors said that no walkthrough gate or other checking arrangement was made at the entrance of the zoo. “Not even a single security official is deployed in the zoo,” the visitors said.—APP

Commuters facing hardships due to motorcycles parked near Bara Market.

Muhammad Hanif and Resident Director RAC Waqar Ahmed were also present on the occasion. In the Category of Milli songs Jahangir Niazi from Rawalpindi secured first, Irum Abbasi from Murree got second while Moazzam Ali from Gujar Khan remained third.


‘Moral turpitude, debauchery nothing new in power corridors of Kashmir’ Demands ‘exemplary punishment’ to sexual assaulter SRINAGAR—The alleged sexual assault Hurriyat Conference (M) Mirwaiz Umar dent. “I am sure law will take its own on a lady doctor by the Minister of State for Health, Shabir Khan, triggered a political storm, with both mainstream and pro-freedom leaders demanding “exemplary punishment” to the minister. The Chairman of Hurriyat Conference (G) Syed Ali Geelani said the minister deserves “exemplary punishment so that nobody else can dare to attack the chastity of Kashmiri women and girls in future.” “The minister should be brought to book and punished severely. I also urge the people of Kashmir to take steps to ensure sale of liquor is stopped forthwith because it is the root cause of many crimes against women,” he said. The Chairman of Jammu and Kashmir Liberation Front (JKLF), Muhammad Yasin Malik, termed the incident as “shocking.” “It is ironical that such incidents repeatedly take place in Kashmir. It is mainly due to the fact that the accused, mostly at the helm of the affairs, feel unaccountable. They are laced with unbridled powers to commit any crime against anybody including women, and they know they would not be punished for their crimes,” Malik said. Joining the chorus, Chairman of

Family members of AJK driver urge GoI to release him M UZAFFARABAD—Moving scenes were witnessed here at a demonstration staged by the family members of a driver, who was arrested by Jammu and Kashmir police some three weeks back for alleged drug trafficking through intra-Kashmir trade. The demonstrators, who included men, women and children, staged a sitin at the Press Club raising slogans in favour of his release at the earliest. They were holding a number of placards, inscribed with appeals for release of driver Muhammad Shafique. Most of these appeals were on behalf of his widowed mother, wife, brothers and four children. “Please set my guiltless father free,” read one placard, being carried by detained driver’s 12year old daughter, Kainat. “What’s the fault of my father? Why has he been incarcerated? We are feeling so wretched in his absence,” said the young girl in a sobbing voice, urging Government of India to release him immediately. Almost all female participants of the demonstration were seen shedding tears particularly when the detained driver’s children made passionate appeals before the media persons for early repatriation of their father. Speaking to reporters at the demonstration, trader Mubarak Awan urged India and Pakistan to pay attention to the issue as it had devastated the lives of the families of all held up drivers in general and that of the detained driver’s in particular.—NNI

Indian police arrest Yasin Malik in Srinagar SRINAGAR—Indian police arrested the Chairman of Jammu and Kashmir Liberation Front, Muhammad Yasin Malik, along with three party leaders in Srinagar, today.Despite restrictions JKLF leaders and activists tried to conduct a march towards Lal Chowk in Srinagar. The JKLF had called for the march to press for the return of the mortal remains of martyred liberation leaders, Muhammad Maqbool Butt and Muhammad Afzal Guru, from New Delhi’s Tihar jail to the occupied territory for proper burial. As they reached near the Lal Chowk, the police resorted to brute force to disperse them and took Muhammad Yasin Malik, Noor Muhammad Kalwal, Mushtaq Ahmed and Ashraf Bin Salam into custody. The police shifted the arrested leaders to Kothi Bagh Police Station.—KMS

Farooq termed the incident as shocking. “Rigorous punishment should be given to the Congress minister. It is the height of State-terrorism as ministers have once again started attacking the honour of our women after the infamous sex scandal of 2006 in which 12 ministers and many bureaucrats were involved,” Mirwaiz told Greater Kashmir over phone from New Delhi. He said the government and its forces take no time in slapping PSAs and other Acts against youth for pelting stones. “We demand the minister should be slapped with life-imprisonment. That would be a lesson for other politicians to refrain from indulging in such horrendous acts,” said Mirwaiz. “We salute the courage of the victim who managed to ensure a case is registered against the Minister.” Pertinently, senior pro-freedom leaders including Shabir Ahmed Shah, Nayeem Ahmed Khan and others were not available for comments as they have been detained by police ahead of the anniversaries of JKLF founder Muhammad Maqbool Bhat and Muhammad Afzal Guru. Meanwhile the ruling National Conference said it was shocked over the inci-

course,” said NC’s Additional General Secretary, Sheikh Mustafa Kamaal. The State Congress chief Prof Saifudin Soz played politics over the issue and directed the Congress minister Shabir Khan to step down. “He agreed and resigned immediately,” Soz said. “At 10:15 am, I sent the copies of my decision to Congress President Sonia Gandhi, Union Minister Ghulam Nabi Azad and Congress’s JK Affairs’ In-charge Ambika Soni.” Soz said: “I believe the inquiry will be instituted soon. It was me who informed the Chief Minister Omar Abdullah about the minister’s resignation. In 2009, Chief Minister Omar Abdullah had threatened to resign when the opposition alleged that he too figured in the list of those accused of exploiting girls in 2006. The sexual violence charges in India have come under severe public security following 2012 gang rape and murder of a student in a moving bus in New Delhi. A top editor of India news weekly Tehelka Tarun Tejpal is facing an arrest in a sexual assault case and former Supreme Court Judge of India A K Ganguly had to step down from the post of chairperson of West Bengal Human Rights Commission in wake of similar allegations.—NNI

Online petition seeks release of detainees, Kashmir solution SRINAGAR—A group of prominent academi- sent in Kashmir through military violence and cians, writers, journalists, filmmakers and social activists from different countries have launched an online petition seeking a series of measures, including release of Kashmiri political prisoners, return of mortal remains of Muhammad Maqbool Butt and Muhammad Afzal Guru, besides a sincere and time-bound political process to resolve the Kashmir dispute. The open petition “Free Kashmiri Political Prisoners, End the Occupation of Kashmir” has been moved on change.org – the world’s largest petition platform. “We write this letter in solidarity with the people of Kashmir who have been living under one of the most dense military occupations in the world, where for every 15 Kashmiri civilians there is an armed Indian soldier,” says the petition that is being widely promoted by nonresident Kashmiris over Facebook and Twitter. “We express support for the Kashmiri people’s right to self-determination by highlighting and opposing the repression of political dis-

illegal detentions,” it adds. Giving a brief about the history of Kashmir, the petition says that India has deployed 700,000 troops in Kashmir and given them unbridled powers under black laws like Armed Forces Special Powers Act (AFSPA) that grant the forces immunity from prosecution for human rights abuses, including murder, rape, and torture. “Under the black law, Public Safety Act (PSA), the authorities have imprisoned thousands of Kashmiri youth and activists. Over 5,000 Kashmiris were arrested in the summer of 2008 alone,” it added. The signatories have also expressed concern over the authorities’ policy of keeping most of the cases open specifically for punitive and preemptive purposes. “There are many Kashmiris who have been languishing in Indian jails over several years, some without trial – an overwhelming majority of whom are denied a fair chance to defend themselves in court,” the petition says.—AP

Women supporters of Jammu and Kashmir Liberation Front (JKLF) shout slogans as Indian policemen stop them during a protest in Srinagar.

Books on Butt, Guru launched in Muzaffarabad

U NITED N ATIONS—Braving bitterly cold the Kashmiri people since its occupation of the MUZAFFARABAD—Books on weather, a large number of people staged a rally state more than six decades ago. prominent martyred liberation leaders, Muhammad Maqbool Butt and Muhammad Afzal Guru, have been launched in a ceremony held at a local hotel in Muzaffarabad.The ceremony for the launch of the books ‘Aakhri Paigham’ and Tareeqat-e-Majzoob’ was presided over by Ghulam Muhammad Safi, the convener of AJK chapter of Syed Ali Gilani’s forum. It was attended among others by Syed Muzaffar Hussain Shah, Altaf Hussain Wani, Abdul Hameed Lone, Mushtaq-ul-Islam, AJK Prime Minister ’s media adviser, Shaukat Javed Mir, and Sheikh Aqeel-ur-Rehman of Jamaat-eIslami Azad Jammu and Kashmir. Speakers on the occasion paid glowing tributes to Muhammad Maqbool Butt and Muhammad Afzal Guru. They maintained that sacrifices of Kashmiri martyrs would not be allowed to go waste and their mission would be accomplished at all costs.—KMS

Secret execution of Guroo

Mirwaiz: India violated basic principles of justice SRINAGAR—Paying tributes

MUZAFFARABAD: Shoukat Javed Mir addressing public gathering on the occasion of death anniversary of Afzal Guru.

Court issues arrest warrant against Shabir Ahmad Khan SRINAGAR—A local court has issued arrest war- for issuance of arrest warrant against him,” the rant against former Minister of State for Health and Congress legislator Shabir Ahmad Khan for allegedly sexually assaulting a lady doctor while a three-member police team left for Jammu to arrest him. After hearing the prosecuting officer and SHO Shaheed Gunj, Chief Judicial Magistrate said the case was registered by police against the accused (former MoS Health and Congress MLA from Rajouri) on February 6 and till date there has been no headway due to his absence. While issuing the bailable warrant, Chief Judicial Magistrate observed that the accused is not cooperating with the investigating agency. “The reason filed by investigating agency for issuance of arrest warrant against accused are genuine and well founded and make a ground

CJM said and directed SSP Srinagar to execute the order of arrest. On issuance of bail, CJM said same guidelines should be followed by SSP Srinagar which were followed in DK Basu’s judgment case. Earlier, SHO had sought issuance of arrest warrant against former MoS Health in terms of Section 25 of Police Act. Sources said the accused moved a bail application before the Public Prosecutor. However, due to unknown reasons his bail application was not produced before the court. As per rules, before moving an application before the court, the application is to be verified by Public Prosecutor. Khan had moved an application for anticipatory bail in the Jammu wing of the state High Court but it was rejected.—NNI

Kashmir Council EU to hold a seminar to pay tributes to Butt, Guru BRUSSELS—Kashmir Council EU would hold a seminar in Brussels todeay to pay rich tribute to two Kashmiri freedom strugglers Maqbool Butt and Afzal Guru. The seminar would be organised at 7pm at Kashmir House in Belgic capital. Kashmiris on both sides of the Line of Control and across the world observe the martyrdom anniversary of prominent Kashmiri liberation leader, Muhammad Maqbool Butt every year on Feb 11.

Muhammad Maqbool Butt was hanged in Tihar Jail of New Delhi on the 11th February in 1984 for his leading role in the Kashmiris’ on-going liberation struggle. He was buried in the premises of the prison. The hanging of Muhammad Afzal Guru coincides with the martyrdom anniversary of Maqbool Butt. Muhammad Afzal Guru was 2nd Kashmiri who was hanged and buried at the same Tehar prison by the Indian Authorities on Feb 9, 2013.

Hanging of the Kashmiri youth Afzal Guru had been also evoked widespread condemnation. A large number of Kashmiris and their supporters are invited to attend the seminar on anniversary of both Kashmiris in Brussels on Feb 10. 2014. In a statement Kashmir Council EU Chairman Ali Raza Syed called upon the Indian government to hand over of the bodies of Afzal Guru and Maqbool But to Kashmiris for proper funeral and decent burial. —NNI

Kashmiris demonstrate in front of UN for right of self-determination

to late Afzal Guroo on his first death anniversary, APHC Chairman Mirwaiz Umar Farooq has said that secret execution of Guroo was a tragic incident for entire Kashmiri. Mirwaiz also said that the Guroo’s hanging openly displayed the example of confrontationist and retributive approach adopted by the Indian leadership against Kashmiris. Despite having no evidences or witnesses proving him guilty, Mirwaiz said Guroo was secretly sent to gallows in the silence of night thus violating all the basic principles of justice and fair play, adding, the hanging has put a question mark over the deliverance of justice by Indian judiciary. Demanding immediate return of the mortals of Guroo, Mirwaiz said the best way to pay tributes to him was that entire Kashmir should unite and collectively fight their cause. “In a telephonic address to a seminar on Kashmir solidarity day in Muzaffarabad, Mirwaiz thanked entire Pakistani nation and her people for their unflinching support to Kashmiris and their fight for right to self determination,” Hurriyat (M) statement said, adding, During his address, Mirwaiz stressed upon the need to devise a collective strategy by the Kashmiri leadership in connection with the Kashmir issue. Terming the deliberations among the leadership of five regions of Kashmir to form such a common strategy as inevitable, Mirwaiz said the Indian and Pakistani governments should take bold steps to create a conducive atmosphere for such a meet of leaders to happen.” Pakistani government and people observed the Kashmir solidarity day and showed their complete support and association with the Kashmir struggle, the entire Kashmiri nation was thankful to them, statement quoting Mirwaiz said.—NNI

in front of the U.N building in New York demanding the implementation of Security Council resolutions under the Kashmiri people are to exercise their right to self-determination. The rally was organized by the Kashmir Mission, USA, which is headed by Capt. (rtd) Shaheen Butt, to mark the Kashmir Solidarity Day. A large cross-section of the Pakistani and Kashmiri Diaspora in New York and surrounding areas participated. The demonstrators carried anti-India placards and raised slogans calling for the freedom of Kashmiri people from India’s yoke. “Selfdetermination our birth right,” they shouted. Wrapped up in woolies, speakers at the rally denounced India for the brutalities let loose on

They called on the United Nations and the international community to pressurise India into ending its repression of Kashmiri people and honour its pledge to allow a U.N sponsored plebiscite in Kashmir to determine their wishes. In his speech, Capt. (Retd) Shaheen Butt urged Secretary-General Ban Ki-moonto take practical to implement the UN resolutions on Kashmir in the interest of peace and stability in South Asia, Sardar Imtiaz Khan, a Kashmiri activist, demanded that India’s membership of the United Nations should be suspended because New Dehli was in violation of the world body’s mandatory resolutions. Other speakers included Sardar Mohammad Taj Khan, Chaudhry Ghulam Jilani and Afzal Butt.—APP

Kashmir Solidarity Day

Reaffirmation of moral, political and diplomatic support spurred RIYADH—The annual obser- ished agenda, and its resoluvance of “Kashmir Solidarity Day” reflects reaffirmation of our moral, political and diplomatic support toward our Kashmiri brethren in their struggle for fundamental rights and civil liberties, said Khayyam Akbar, deputy head of Mission of Pakistan. Kashmir Solidarity Day was observed here the other day at the Pakistani Embassy as a token of solidarity with the people of Kashmir. Akbar cited that the Pakistani government would not compromise on Kashmir and would remain firmly committed to its principled stance on Jammu and Kashmir, the Arab News reported. “The beautiful valley of Kashmir has turned in to valley of fire and blood,” said the deputy head of mission, adding, “India deployed seven to eight hundred thousand soldiers in Kashmir to suppress Kashmiri people but the suppression will not deter them from their stand.” Reiterating the message of Pakistani Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif on the occasion, Akbar said, the PM has invited India to resolve the issue of Kashmir through dialogue. He pointed out that the lingering Kashmiri dispute would have adverse effects on the socioeconomic development of the region and stressed that arbitrary and unlawful detentions in Kashmir must end. The diplomat asserted that Kashmir is part of the unfin-

tion is the key to regional peace and stability. “Some have tried to declare Pakistan as a terrorist country but this attempt has failed and it is clear that Pakistan is a peaceful country,” Akbar said. Mohammad Ashiq Khan presented a resolution, which expressed solidarity with Kashmiri people, and demanded the international community to take notice of the atrocities committed by the Indian Army in Kashmir. The resolution called on the Indian government to resolve the issue of Kashmir according to the UN resolution. Khan thanked the Saudi government under the leadership of Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Abdullah as well as the Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OCI) for supporting the Kashmiri cause. Qamer Faisal, Abdul Basit, Rasid Butt, Rana Iftikhar, Mian Hamid Ali, Ejaz Hamdani and Sardar Mohammad Razzaq were amongst the key speakers at the event. The speakers pledged to continue supporting Kashmiris until they attain their right to self-determination. They also highlighted the atrocities and human right abuses in Kashmir and paid homage to the martyrs who offered their lives for the cause. Pakistani community members including officials, businessmen, students, journalists and intellectuals attended the event.—NNI

Civil society, medical fraternity furious, stage protests SRINAGAR—Doctors in Held Kashmir suspended their work and staged demonstrations to protest the alleged sexual assault on a woman doctor at the hands of junior minister for health, Shabir Ahmad Khan. The massive protests were held at Government Medical College (GMC) in Srinagar, the summer capital of Indian-controlled Kashmir. Hundreds of doctors assembled in the premises of SMHS hospital and staged massive protests. The protesters demanded stern action against Khan apart from his “immediate arrest.” A number of lady medicos were the part of the protests. They held placards reading: “Hang Khan; Hang Molester.” The protesters also demanded a judicial inquiry into the incident. “The government cannot act as a mute spectator to this shameful incident. The guilty must be brought to book. The doctors were raising slogans against Khan and demanded his arrest. “It is highly shameful on part of government that the accused minister hasn’t been arrested so far,” said Dr. Nisar-ul-Hassan, president of doctors association in Srinagar. The protest was organised by the Doctors Association Kashmir led by its president Dr Nisar-ul-Hassan. “The minister should be arrested immediately,” Dr Nisar-ul-Hassan said. “The minister has committed a henious crime for which he must be awarded with severe punishment.” “We have repeatedly being appealing Congress high command not to compromise with the health care system in J&K,” he said and demanded CBI probe into the incident.—NNI

RAWLAKOT: AJK Minister for Transport Muhammad Tahir Khokar, Chairman Public Account Committee Abid Hussain Abid talking to media personnel.


Selling

Buying

USA

105.20

105.00

UK

171.74

171.41

Euro

142.99

142.72

Currency

Canada

95.08

94.90

Switzerland

116.82

116.60

Australia

94.07

93.89

Sweden

16.18

16.15

Japan

1.0314

1.0295

Norway

16.93

16.90

Singapore

82.94

82.78

Denmark

19.16

19.12

Saudi Arabia

28.05

28.00

Hong Kong

13.56

13.53

Kuwait

372.02

371.31

Malaysia

31.65

31.59

Newzealand

86.56

86.39

Qatar

28.89

28.83

UAE

28.64

28.59

KR. WON

0.0978

0.0976

Thailand

3.206

3.200

Bullion Rates KARACHI—Following were the bullion rates in major cities yesterday. RS PER 10 GRAMS KARACHI: Gold Tezab Silver Tezabi

47142.00 788.75

MULTAN: Gold Tezabi (24-Ct) 43380.00 Gold 22 Ct 39660.00 SilverTezabi 686.00 Silver Thobi 627.00

PTA wants removal of mobile towers near borders L AHORE —The Pakistan Telecommunication Authority (PTA) has asked the government to take up with India and Afghanistan the issue of removing cellular towers near the border whose signals are spilling over into the country’s territory. The telecom regulator said that these signals emanate from mobile phone towers in India and Afghanistan located close to the border. The PTA has written to the Interior Ministry and law enforcement agencies to take up the matter with their counterparts in India and Afghanistan. “The matter should be taken up with the Indian and Afghan governments to ensure removal of towers along border areas,” the PTA said in an official letter. Some Indian and Afghan operators had set up towers in close proximity to the border. The sale of Indian and Afghan SIMs in Pakistan’s border areas has also been reported. Afghan SIMs have reportedly been used in kidnapping for ransom cases and other illegal activities, officials alleged. Since the SIMs of both countries are in use in border areas because of their signals spilling over into Pakistan territory, law enforcement agencies are left with only the option of intercepting phone calls if any illegal activity is taking place.—INP

Well-timed 3G auction can add billions of dollars to economy I SLAMABAD —It is a widely 2012-13. The penetration level ticipates that Pakistan is set to range from 0.1-1.5 percentage right away. These jobs will span vice availability. A senior offirecognised reality that broadband infrastructure contributes towards economic growth of a country and significant amount of job creation. Pakistan without 3G services was left with aging copper media to cope with broadband needs of the country while WiMAX operators could not fill the gap while EvDO technology can be termed as smooth enough to entirely replace the fixed broadband technology. This whole proposition resulted into mere around 3 million broadband connections in last one decade against 129 million cellular subscriptions during the same duration. According to Pakistan Telecommunication Authority (PTA) data, the number of Broadband Internet users in Pakistan increased from less than 27,000 in 2005-06 to around 2.72 million subscribers and 30 percent growth during

remains low at 1.52 percent. However, the remarkable growth of wireless technologies is an encouraging sign for the sector as major player Pakistan Telecommunication Company Limited (PTCL) invested a lot and it is currently leading the broadband market by a long margin with its EvDO services. With upcoming 3G spectrum auction a large population will be able to transition towards broadband services through high-speed wireless data networks. This is a trend that is followed in various markets as well. According to different reports, 3G broadband penetration has exceeded fixed line broadband in almost every market. A recent report by Plum Consulting an-

achieve at least 10 percent broadband penetration (or 20 million broadband connection) by 2018 if 3G is auction in 2014. These estimates are based on low-demand forecast while with high demand forecast, broadband penetration in Pakistan can go up to as high as 16 percent or 30 million broadband connections by 2018 if 3G is auctioned in 2014. With regard to positive impact on GDP, economic studies have proven the fact that there is a positive relationship between broadband penetration and GDP growth. This is true for both developed and developing markets. Different researches have established that impact of a ten percentage point increase in broadband penetration on GDP growth rates

MoIT initiating projects to promote e-learning among youth ISLAMABAD—Ministry of Information Technology and Telecommunications (MOIT) is initiating projects with universities and industry to promote e-learning among the youth. The implementing Body of the Ministry, National ICT Research and Development Fund is initially focusing on providing training material for learning English language and mathematics at high school level. Official sources on Sunday said the Department plans to develop e-health related systems and applications that use mobile phones and expert systems to impart continued education and better advice to citizens in rural areas. Similarly, the sources said research and development initiatives are being supported with focus on increasing the effectiveness of services

delivered by Lady Health Workers (LHW) in rural areas. They said the wealth of information available on Internet is empowering individuals and organizations throughout the world, adding that unfortunately, for majority of our population most of the information is in English language and we are supporting efforts to make it easier to develop content in local languages. The sources said to empower young citizens through Internet connectivity and to promote social networks, the Department would impart training in high schools on creating content in local languages. This training will be followed by a sequence of competitions for young minds on developing web pages and content that can be of great value to their peers.—NNI

High cost of power generation can bankrupt country: PEW I SLAMABAD —Pakistan Economy Watch has been producing around half of it due to (PEW) on Sunday expressed grave concern over rising cost of power generation terming it one of the biggest problems having potential to bankrupt country. Per unit cost of electricity stands at Rs 14 which jumps to Rs 20 after adding different taxes in it which is not affordable for domestic consumers as well as the industry, it said. President of PEW, Dr. Murtaza Mughal said on Sunday that Power production cost must be brought down through Thar coal and early construction of kalabagh dam should also be ensured. “Country’s installed capacity for power generation stands at 21000 mega watt but it

various problems including electricity theft, losses, non-payment of bills and chronic circular debt”, he added. Dr. Murtaza Mughal mentioned that focus on Thar coal and kalabagh dam would contain energy crisis, cut oil import bill, provide jobs and boost economy. While telling details of Thar coal, President of PEW said that Pakistan have 175 billion tonnes of coal matching oil reserves of Saudi Arabia and Qatar that can ensure energy security for centuries by providing around 100000 MW of electricity, he added. He said that Kalabagh is best site for a dam in Pakistan which has become a victim of politics.—Online

Sales of listed retail firms rise 17pc to SR22bn

UAE Ministry of Economy signs MoU with Seoul-based Kipo SEOUL—The UAE Ministry of Economy (MoE) has signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with the Seoul-based Korean Intellectual Property Office (KIPO) seeking to strengthen cooperation in protecting intellectual property (IP). The MoU was signed between Mohammad Ahmad Bin Abdul Aziz Al Shehi, Undersecretary, Ministry of Economy, and Kim Young-Min, Commissioner — Kipo, during an official meeting hosted at the Kipo headquarters in Seoul. The agreement complements an earlier MoU signed by the MoE and Kipo in 2010. The latest agreement mandates the MOE and Kipo to collaborate further in developing intellectual property systems in the UAE and commit to substantively examining the patent applications that have been submitted from within the UAE.—Agencies

RIYADH: Total equity market capitalization at the end of January 2014 reached SR1,801.71 billion, rising by 2.79 per cent over the previous month (end of December 2013).—Agencies

RIYADH—Sales of the listed retail firms rose by 17.48 percent to reach SR21.87 billion by the end of 2013 compared to figures of the last year (2012), local media said. Net profits of the 12-listed companies, meanwhile, jumped by 13 percent to hit SR2.96 billion by the end of the year. Market capitalization of the retail firms stood at SR54 billion, or 3 percent of the Saudi stock market, as their capitals reached SR5.6 billion, according to the media report. Jarir Marketing topped the list of retail firms in terms of the sales growth by registering 13 percent to SR5.24 billion in 2013 compared to figures of last year. Likewise, its net profits grew by 14.65 percent to SR653.3 million compared to SR569.8 million. Sales of Fawaz Abdulaziz Alhokair & Co. registered the second biggest sales growth to reach SR4.65 billion in the last nine months (2013) compared to SR3.2 billion in the same period last year, or an increase of 45.4 percent. Its profits soared by 20 percent to SR580.5 million compared to SR483.82 million, according to media reports. The United Electronics Co. (Extra) registered the third biggest sales at SR3.39 billion in 2013 compared to SR3.02 billion in 2012.

Its profits grew by 5.49 percent to SR167.3 million compared to SR158.6 million. Sales and profit growth was attributed to the growing number of showrooms which increased to 37 in 2013. On the other hand, sales of Abdullah Othaim Markets grew by 8.62 percent to reach SR4.62 billion compared to SR4.27 billion while its profits reached SR192.51 million compared to SR171.77 million in 2012, or an increase of 12.07 percent. In 2013, Al-Mouwasat Medical Services Co. registered sales worth SR902.2 million compared to SR707 million in 2012, or increase of 13.3 percent. The company realized SR201.2million in profits compared to SR171.6 million in the previous year (+17.25 percent). Sales of Dallah Medical Services Co. rose to SR749.6 million compared to SR637 million in 2012, or an increase of 18 percent and, likewise, its profits grew by 2 percent to SR136 million compared to SR133.4 million. Unlike the previous firms, sales of Fitaihi Holding Group dropped by 1.60 percent to SR250 million compared to SR254 million in the previous year.—Agencies

points, with higher impacts found in lower income countries like Pakistan. If we carry a conservative estimate of 0.5 percent impact on GDP and assume that impact will last for 3 years then Pakistan’s current GDP will increase by Rs. 40 billion in one year after 3G auction, while another Rs. 105 billion increment after second year of 3G auction and Rs. 210 billion during the third year of 3G auction. The estimates suggest next generation networks are expected to add Rs. 380 billion to Rs. 1,180 billion to national GDP during next few years till 2020. Not to mention, these figures exclude the auction money that Pakistan is going to generate through 3G. Regarding increased employment, same report and experts opinion indicate that over 900,000 new jobs will be created if 3G is auctioned

Govt prepares plan to enhance gemstones exports

around various sectors including telecom, services, advertising, outsourcing and others. The increased taxes arise as a result of the general stimulus to economic activity i.e. they derive from taxes paid by all sectors of the economy, especially the data services. The estimates also suggest that government would be able to generate addition taxes of at least Rs. 29 billion and at most Rs. 71 billion from various sectors after 3G auction. If we talk about socioeconomic benefits, Broadband is an enabler which will enhance the provision of education, health and government services in Pakistan by reducing delivery costs and improving ser-

cial at PTA said with access to broadband will entirely change the way we do our business, financial and private transactions, adding that the way “We interact with each other or the way we find our addresses, everything will be reshaped.” Moreover, smartphones with increased computing abilities are going to lessen the efforts and hardships we come across in our daily routines. “From the way we pay our bills to the way we register our complaints with utility companies will all go digital,” the official added. The official said in addition, low cost and flexible access to IT resources, such as file storage, software and databases, can be accessed using cloud based services.—Online

Envoy: Pakistan resolved to implement IP gas pipeline

T EHRAN —Pakistani Ambassador to Iran two countries are willing to press ahead with I SLAMABAD —Ministry of Nour Mohammad Jadmani underlined the accomplishment of the plan. Earlier this Petroleum and Natural Resources has prepared a comprehensive plan on mining, cutting, polishing and marketing of gemstones with a view to enhance their exports. State-run radio on Sunday reported that Geological Survey of Pakistan has made preliminary geological exploration on various gemstones present in the country. Pakistan Gems and Jewellery Development Company, a subsidiary of Ministry of Industries and Production, is working to enhance productivity of entire value-chain from mine to market through facilitation, technology up-gradation, skill development, and marketing and branding. The government is also training locals of gem bearing areas, including Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, Azad Jammu and Kashmir and GilgitBaltistan, in gemology and gemstone mining on scientific lines.—Online

‘Pakistan Business Seminar’ in Dubai L AHORE —In his ongoing efforts to promote Pakistan’s positive image with a view to expand trade and attract investment into the country Prime Minister Special Envoy for Overseas Investment. Ambassador Javed Malik hosted a “Pakistan Business Seminar” in Dubai which was chaired by Federal Minister for Finance, Senator Ishaq Dar. The seminar which was organized by Ambassador Javed Malik, brought together prominent members of affluent Pakistani businessmen and professionals in the UAE as well as noted Arab businessmen in an effort to encourage and motivate them to invest and do business with Pakistan. Presidents of Pakistan Business Councils, Chairmen and CEOs of prominent companies were present at the impressive ceremony which was part of the efforts of the Special Envoy for Overseas Investment to engage with overseas Pakistanis and Friends of Pakistan globally. Speaking on the occasion, Ishaq Dar gave a comprehensive overview of Pakistan’s economic outlook and shed light on the economic vision and agenda of the current government. He also highlighted various reforms and initiatives being taken by the government to steer the country towards economic development and self-reliance in line with the directions of Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif. Welcoming the Finance Minister Senator Ishaq Dar, the host of the seminar, Ambassador Javed Malik appreciated the efforts of the present government and its economic team led by Finance Minister Ishaq Dar and said that federal finance Minister is faced with a challenging situation but we are confident that with his tireless efforts, the economy will be turned around. Paying tributes to the present government’s zero tolerance to corruption, he said that transparency and good governance have become hallmark of the present government which makes Pakistanis living overseas proud.— Online

importance of Iran-Pakistan (IP) gas pipeline project for the energy-hungry South Asian nation, and reiterated Islamabad’s determination to complete the construction of the rest of IP project on its soil. “Pakistani governments is obliged to accomplish the project,” Jadmani told the Iranian students news agency on Saturday. “We are still obliged to complete the project. Despite what is released by foreign media on the gas pipeline. Although Pakistani government is facing problems, but we are seeking advancement of the project,” he said. He further added that the

week, a Pakistani source said that talks on setting new timeframe for the completion of the much-awaited IP gas pipeline project was started in Tehran after Islamabad sent a team of experts and officials to the Iranian capital to this end. Iran has already built 900 kilometers of the pipeline on its own soil and is waiting for the 700-kilometer Pakistani side of the pipeline to be constructed. The IP pipeline is designed to help Pakistan overcome its growing energy needs at a time when the country of over 180 million people is grappling with serious energy shortages.—INP

Privatization to remain unsuccessful sans inclusion of local entrepreneurs ISLAMABAD—Chairman Privatization Com- privatizing Pakistan Petroleum Limited mission Muhammad Zubair Umer has said that privatization of State Owned Entities can’t be successful by neglecting the businessmen who have leading role in supporting the economy of the country. Talking to INP on Sunday, Zubair Umer said that if the national institutions are not sold to local entrepreneurs then foreigner investors would have to be approached for the purpose. He rejected the government plan of selling 26% shares of the national institutions and termed it an unwise policy. He urged their complete privatization and handing over their control to the buyers. The chairman privatization commission said that nationalization policy has totally flopped across the globe and the developed countries pursuing the policy of privatizing the national entities. Zubair Umer said that the commission has set the target of

(PPL), Oil and Gas Development Company Limited (OGDCL) and selling remaining shares of HBL, UBL, MCB and ABL till June 30, 2014. Responding a question, he said that privatization commission will take up the issue of privatization of 100 percent shares of the entities along with administration control to Cabinet’s committee for privatization. To yet another question, chairman privatization commission said that to end the huge fiscal deficit, national institutions giving profits also had to be privatized with those which running in loss. Zubair Umer said that government will ensure the protection of rights of employees while privatizing the national institutions, pointing out that officials hurt the institutions through their malpractices and embezzlements but not the workers.—INP

Foreign company Deokjae all set to invest in KP P E S H AWA R —A foreign Company Deokjae has expressed its keen interest to invest and work in highway infrastructure and energy sectors in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa under public private partnership. It also showed special interest to invest in the proposed project of Chakdara-Swat expressway. To this effect Chief Executive Officer of the company Hamid Rasul made a call on meeting with Advisor to Chief Minister Khyber Pakhtunkhwa on Economic Affairs and Incharge of Investment Promotion Cell RafaqatUllah Babar at his office in Peshawar. It was told in the meeting that feasi-

bility report of the proposed ChakdaraSwat Expressway has already been prepared. Representatives of the company briefed the Advisor about the experience and technical expertise of the company in the aforesaid fields. Rafaqatullah Babar appreciated the expertise of the company and wished the company’s representatives to arrange a briefing to Chief Minister Khyber Pakhtunkhwa. He assured that the provincial government would utilize the expertise of the company and would provide all possible facilities to interested companies to invest in the province in various sectors.— Online

US has multiple options to mull on oil exports D UBAI —A debate rages in the US on ited re-exports of foreign crude to Europe whether to allow exports of domestically produced crude oil or keep the ban which has been in place since 1975, when rising oil prices drove petrol prices higher and renewed supply security concerns. This has caused alarm in producer circles and a short-lived rise in US oil prices at a time when they have been under pressure on account of surging supply there. Needless to say if US crude oil enters the international market with additional supplies, then oil prices will be pressed further. In reality, there has always been some crude oil export from the US, but regulations governing them ensured volumes remained modest. Crude oil of US origin can be exported in special circumstances if it is too heavy and viscous such as some of that in California. Others are actually reexports of foreign oil imported to the US originally. This mostly went to Canada on the provision that it is consumed there. But the news that the US Bureau of Industry and Security (BIS) authorised lim-

by granting two licences each to the UK and Italy with another pending approval to Germany has raised hopes of some companies that the ban could be lifted. I estimate the volume involved in these licences at about 75 million barrels, which over the time it will be delivered may amount to a small daily volume. Granting of licences is not easy as the applicant has to demonstrate that the transaction is “in the nation’s interest and the oil cannot be sold for a reasonable price in the US” and that exports will be terminated in cases of emergency. Another way to get a licence is to swap the exported volume by an equivalent volume of better quality or quantity oil or products. As US production from shale oil increases, producing companies are increasingly in favour of lifting the ban, especially as oil in the US is selling at a discount to international prices. On the other side of the debate are refiners who are afraid of appreciating US oil prices due to exports and losing the advantage of current discounts.—Agencies


Babar stars in Multan’s opening win R AWALPINDI —Multan Tigers won their ally bundled for 91 with three overs to spare. opening match of the tournament by beating Karachi Zebras by 49 runs in Rawalpindi. Put in to bat, Multan got a strong start with an opening stand of 59 in seven overs as Zeeshan Ashraf scored 40 off 21 with seven fours and a six. They lost two more wickets in the next three overs but a knock of 34 from Naved Yasin and a 10-ball 15 from Gulraiz Sadaf helped them score 37 in the last five overs to reach 140 for 7. Karachi were given a stable start with an 18-ball 32 from Fakhar Zaman but they lost four wickets in a span of 12 deliveries, of which three were taken by Zulfiqar Babar, to stutter to 42 for 4. They never recovered from there as only two more batsmen reached double figures and were eventu-

Babar finished with 4 for 16 in his four overs. Four wickets from Imtiaz Ali gave Larkana Bulls a comfortable nine-wicket win over Karachi Dolphins in Islamabad. Asked to bat, Karachi were given a stable start by Khurram Manzoor with a 47-ball 51 but he didn’t get any support from the other end as only the two openers reached doubledigit scores. The rest of the nine batsmen scored 28 runs together as Imtiaz’s 4 for 16 from his four overs routed Karachi for 94 in the penultimate over. Larkana were cruising in their chase with an opening stand of 60 between Zafar Ali and Ahsan Ali before the former fell for 28. Ahsan, with an unbeaten 54, took them home in the 14th over with Ayaz Jamali who was not out on 16.—Agencies

Shabbir completes double with DHA Golf crown RAWALPINDI: A view of cricket match between Multan tigers Vs Karachi Zebras during Faysal Bank T20 Cricket Cup.

ICC has lost the right to govern: Arif Abbasi K A R A C H I —Reacting

sharply against International Cricket Council (ICC) after the controversial draft adoption, former chief executive of the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB), Arif Ali Khan Abbasi felt that the apex body had lost the right of governance after falling into a trap setup by India, England and Australia the big-three. He feared further grouping amongst ICC members in the longer run. Any organization that is based on greed could not survive. The ICC president Alan Isaac encouraged the big-three to take over and by letting them to dominate, the ICC has actually lost the right of governance. Arif

Abbasi told a private television channel on Sunday. The affiliates & associates will suffer with the new regulations. This is against the charter of the ICC which advocates for the expansion of the game. ge added. Arif Abbasi, while applauding Pakistan and Sri Lanka for their stance, said that even collectively the contribution to world cricket from the so called big-three wasn’t at-par with Pakistan. In terms of the on field performance, the big-three countries have been below-par lately, and what is their contribution to world cricket otherwise? Pakistan introduced a lot of posi-

tive things to the cricket world. If they talk about the money, then I am afraid an organization based on greed couldn’t survive, mentioned Arif Abbasi. Commenting on the current state of affairs in the PCB, the former chief executive feared that the legal battles and the government interference could prove costly for the PCB. Frequent chopping and changing is not in the interest of Pakistan cricket, it also sends adverse signals across. The Pakistan Cricket Board needs to put its house in order to regain the confidence of the cricketing world, he concluded.—APP

Wasim Akram fined for violating traffic rules LAHORE—Former cricketer Wasim Akram has been fined Rs500 for violating traffic rules in Lahore, police said on Sunday. Wasim Akram was challaned for speeding near the Punjab University campus, police officials said. “Wasim was stopped by the traffic warden who told him he was speeding at 78 kmph while the speed limit in the area is 60 kmph,” an officer said. The former Test captain handed over Rs500 without any arguments, he said. The incident came a few days after Test batsman Umar Akmal landed in the lockup for fighting with a traffic warden in Lahore. Akmal, who is on bail, is facing trial with three charges filed against him, including abusing and tearing the shirt of the warden.—INP

ATTOCK: Players of Jand and Hassanabdal football teams in action during final match played at Quaid-e-Azam Stadium.

Cholistan Desert Jeep Rally from Feb 14 LAHORE—9th Cholistan Desert Jeep Rally 2014 will be held at Derawar Fort, district Bahawalpur from February 14 to 16. More than 100 jeep drivers have so far got registered for participation in this rally being organized by the Tourism Development Corporation of Punjab. This was revealed by the Punjab Tourism Minister Rana Mashhood Ahmad Khan while talking to pressmen in Punjab Tourism Complex, here today. describing the rally features, the Minister informed that Cholistan jeep rally will provide the domestic as well as foreign tourists an excellent platform to see closely one of the richest culture along with sensational and thrilling desert jeep contest. The tourists will get a brilliant opportunity to observe the city of Nawabs, unique palaces and museum at Bahawalpur besides seeing gigantic picturesque Cholistan desert, historic Derawar Fort, the mosque built on the exact lines of the Moti Masjid in the Red Fort of Dehli and will get a glimpse of the Royal Graveyard adorned with exquisite blue tiles, the

Minister added. TDCP has introduced a special tour package from February 14 to 16 for the tourists from Lahore to Derawar Fort to witnessed the Jeep Rally. The package include return tickets for travelling in luxurious buses, dinner at Noor Mehal Bahawalpur, visit of Bahawalpur Museum, Sadiq Garh Palace and cultural night/ fire works at Derawar with night stay at camps. The package also includes camel safari, visit of historic mosques and historic graveyard at Derawar besides seeing the inaugural of Jeep Rally. Rana Mashhood Ahmad Khan termed the Cholistan desert jeep rally the biggest motor sports event in Pakistan which would enhance the soft image of Pakistan world over. He announced that the Punjab government will establish theme parks at Rohtas, Kalar Kahar, Fort Manro, Harrapa and Lahore. Managing Director TDCP Syed Habib ur Rehman Gillani and Chairperson Special Parliamentary Committee on Tourism Ms Tahia Noon were also present on the occasion.

Young Appolo Sports Beat Islamia College Railway Road by 7 wickets

Ali excels in Bycos win in Parco Cup KARACHI—All-rounder Muhammad Ali excelled with the bat and ball to guide Byco to 29 runs victory over Attock Refinery in 5th Parco T20 Cricket Tournament at UBL Sports Complex Ground on Saturday. Sent to bat first, Byco raised 149 for the loss of nine wickets in 20 overs. Shahzad Karim slammed 44 and Muhammad Ali contributed 21. Muhammad Siddique took four wickets for 22 runs. Muhammad Ali grabbed four wickets for 22 runs in four overs as Attock Refinery was bowled out for 121 in the 19th over. Summarized scores: Byco 149-9 in 20 overs (Shahzad Karim 44, Muhammad Ali 21, Tayyab 19, Muhammad Siddique 422) Attock Refinery 121 all out in 18.1 overs (Muhammad Haq 27, Munsif 17, Muhammad Saeed 16, Muhammad Ali 422, Waheed 2-12).—APP

Pak men, women arm wrestling probables named LAHORE—A dozen of male and female arm wrestling players were selected here on Sunday to undergo training for the build up of Pak teams for Pak-India arm wrestling competition to be held under the banner of Punjab Youth Festival later this month. The probables, six men and six women, were announced following completion of two-day trials. The team will take part in the PakIndia Games to be held as a part of the ongoing festival. The trials were participated by players belonging to different parts of the country. Following are the players, (Men), 65kgs, Zameer Sultan and Hafiz Haider, 75ks, Hamad Butt and Usman Butt,above 75 kgs.—APP

K ARACHI —Pakistan’s top golfer Muhammad Shabbir Iqbal maintained his domination at the Karachi circuit when he came from behind to emerge on top in the 5th DHA Al-Baraka Golf Tournament which concluded on Sunday. Awesome Shabbir of Islamabad Golf Club, who completed the hat-trick in Chief of Air Staff last week, carded a brilliant round of four-under-par 68 to complete a double here at the Defence Authority Country and Golf Club. Bearded Shabbir, ended with a three-day aggregate of 211 after carding the rounds of 72, 69 and 68 to emerge on the top in 54-hole competition.

Shabbir displayed immaculate driving, chipping and putting while four birdies. “Its now becoming habit for me to come from behind to win the titles, beaming star golfer Shabbir told APP after his triumph. I got my rhythm from the second round despite strong wind,” he commented. Overnight leader Muhammad Munir from IGC was contended with par-72 third round to end a stroke behind at 212. Local golfer Imran Ali Khan, who had started with a spectacular round of sixunder 66 on Friday, slipped to third after playing oneover- par 73 on final day to end with a total of 213.

DG Ranger Gen. Rizwan Akhtar, who was the chief guest, presented the glittering trophy and cash prize of Rs 148,310 to Shabbir Iqbal. Secretary DACGC Brig (Retd) Abdul Qayyum and other officials were also present on the occasion. Runner-up Muhammad Munir collected Rs 146,775 and Imran Ali got Rs 91,200. Saleem Inayat of Karachi Golf Club won the 18-hole senior professional contest by carding one-over-par 73. Mahmood Kiani of IGC was second with 75 and Hasan Akbar also from KGC was third with 76. DHA’s Asif Zuhaib maintained his domination in the amateur category by with total of 224.—APP

FAISALABAD: Players participating in martial arts competition during district youth sports at GC University.

Glassgow-Lahore cycle rally L AHORE —Glasgow’s 13-member special delegation and Punjab Emergency Service (Rescue 1122) organized “Glasgow-Lahore Cycle Rally” on Sunday. The rally was arranged to raise funds for twin programmes between York-hill, Royal Hospital for Sick Children’s Glasgow and Children Hospital/Institute of Child Health Lahore. A special delegation, led by MSP Hanzala Malik, arrived here to launch the special initiative aimed at making join efforts to establish safer communities in Pakistan to tackle youth diseases by creating awareness among the general public. The rally, comprising of over 100 cyclists including DG Rescue Punjab Dr Rizwan Naseer, MSP Hanzala Malik, Dean

Children Hospital Dr Masood Sadiq and other notables, started from Bhatta Chowk and culminated at Kalma Chowk after passing from Askari 10, Sherpao Bridge, Canal and FC College. Later, an awareness walk was also initiated by the participants from Kalma Chowk to Children Hospital where MSP Hanzala Malik talking to the media said that the initiative would create awareness among departments and the general public as well. DG Rescue Punjab Dr Rizwan Naseer said the community participation in the rally was a symbol of ownership by the community. “Around 40 percent diseases among children are water borne diseases which can be reduced by provision of clean and boiled water to children,” he said.—APP

L A H O R E —Young Appolo Sports Vs Islmia College Railway Road T-20 Cricket match played at Railway Allama Iqbal Institute Cricket Ground. Islamia College batting first 195/8 after 20 overs. Asad Mehmood 61, Muhammad Shafiq 35 & Waqas Khan 30 runs. Young Appolo Sports bowling M. Waleed 2/35, Awais Tariq 2/30, Rameez Anwar 2/28. In reply Young Appolo Sports 196/ 3 after 18.3 overs. Sohail Habib batting well 60 runs not out, Rameez Anwar 55 & Awais Tariq 45 runs. Islamia College bowling Muhammad Umar 2/45 & Ateeq Shah 1/40 wickets. End of the match Chief Guest Cricket Promotor Haji Mian Muhammad Ilyas Mughal give away man of the match award to Sohail Habib.—APP

LAHORE: A view of play during the final of Master Paints Polo Cup at Lahore Polo Club.


Mohammad Akram gets two-year contract as bowling coach SPORTS REPORTER

Islamabad High Court on the former

I SLAMABAD —The Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) in a surprise move has awarded a two-year contract to the national team’s bowling coach Mohammad Akram. The former fast bowler who has been working with the team since late 2012 has mostly been given short-term contracts that were renewed accordingly. However, the Press Trust of India, quoting a reliable source in the board, reported on Sunday that as soon as Zaka Ashraf was reinstated as chairman of the board by the Islamabad High Court last month the first thing he did was to renew Akram’s contract for two-years. “Akram had been working on one month contracts since last year due to the restraining orders issued by the

chairman Najam Sethi from taking long term decisions,” the source was quoted as saying. “But when Zaka took charge from Sethi, the first thing he did was to give the two-year contract to Akram who is close to him,” the source said. Akram was always in the good books of Zaka because he kept the chairman abreast of the happenings in the team. “When Zaka was chairman the first time he always had a good tie with Akram,” the source said. The source also said that Akram was now playing an influential role in not only the national team but also in the appointment of the coaches for the national team. “He is clearly in a strong position now and is supporting Moin Khan for the head coach post in the team,” the source confirmed.

Jones claims historic British medal SOCHI: Snowboarder Jenny Jones won Great Britain’s first ever Olympic medal on the snow with a dramatic

slopestyle bronze in Sochi. Jones, 33, held the lead after scoring 87.25 points in her second run and had an agonising wait while 10 athletes tried to better her score. American Jamie Anderson eventually took gold with 95.25, ahead of Finland’s Enni Rukajarvi on 92.50. “I did the best run I could have done,” a thrilled Jones told BBC Sport. Jones scored 73.00 to place fifth after the first round, just 4.25 points off the podium places, and after an impressive second run she secured the bronze when the final competitor, Austrian medal prospect

Anna Gasser, fell. “It feels amazing,” added Jones. “I cannot believe it, I just can’t believe it. I knew I was going to drop [from first place] but I didn’t know how far. I am just so happy. “It was so difficult waiting. I thought I did my best run and landed it as best as I could.” Jones, from Bristol, becomes the first Briton to win a medal at a Winter Games on snow rather than ice, where 22 medals had been won before Sochi in events such as figure skating, curling, skeleton, bobsleigh and, in the more distant past, ice hockey. Alain Baxter thought he had become Britain’s first medal-winner on snow in the 2002 Winter Olympics when he finished third in the men’s slalom, but his bronze was taken away in controversial circumstances after he failed a drugs test. The medal continues a remarkable story for Jones, a three-time X Games slopestyle gold medallist, who has worked in a cardboard factory, a doughnut shop and as a chalet maid to help fund her snowboarding career. Slopestyle was only ac-

cepted into the Sochi Olympic programme in 2012, at a time when Jones was considering her future in the sport. There was a reminder of its dangers in the Olympic final when Czech Sarka Pancochova, who had led after the first run, fell heavily and slid down the slope before being helped to her feet and making her way to the bottom,

where she showed Jones a huge crack in her helmet.

Jones had suffered a serious concussion back in December, and British freestyle snowboard coach Hamish McKnight heaped praise on her achievement. “I’m extremely proud,” he told BBC Sport. “It has been a long journey and she hasn’t had the easiest time of it over the last few months, so it means so much for her and the team. “I

think this could be a big deal for UK snowboarding.—AFP

PCB shortlists applicants in coach hunt SPORTS REPORTER LAHORE—The PCB’s coach committee, comprising former captains Javed Miandad, Intikhab Alam and Wasim Akram, has made recommendations for the positions of head, batting and fielding coaches for the national side. There were no overseas applicants among the 25 that were received for the three posts. The committee has made two recommendations for each position as the board looks to find replacements for Dav Whatmore and fielding coach Julien Fountain in time for the forthcoming Asia Cup in Bangladesh. In November 2013, the PCB had decided not to extend Whatmore’s contract as coach. Mohammad Akram’s contract as Pakistan’s bowling coach has been extended by two years, beginning February 2014. His previous contract, with a

one-year tenure, had ended in August 2013 and Akram has been working on a monthly basis since then, due to uncertainty in the PCB leadership. The PCB had advertised for the positions last month and constituted the coach committee to recommend names after evaluating the applications. The committee met at the Gaddafi Stadium, Lahore to select the probables and suggested the PCB take a final call on the selection. “I am happy that no foreigner has applied for the job and it’s not surprising at all,” Akram said after the meeting. “We have been favouring foreign coaches in the past but it’s time to promote our own coaches who have been working for long. Our recommendations are merely on the basis of merit and according to cricket sense, which eventually will prove beneficial for the country in the longer

run.” Mohsin Khan and Waqar Younis are among the contenders for head coach. Mohsin served as the interim coach for five months in 2011-12 and in this period Pakistan beat England 3-0 in the UAE. He was replaced by Whatmore in March 2012. Waqar was appointed coach of the national team in March 2010. Under his guidance, Pakistan reached the semi-finals of the World Twenty20 in West Indies and won the Test and ODI series in New Zealand. Waqar’s time as coach was checkered by the spot-fixing controversy and Zulqarnain Haider’s move to England after receiving death threats. In the past, Pakistan was coached by former players until Richard Pybus took over as the first foreign coach in 1999. Since then, Bob Woolmer, Geoff Lawson, Whatmore and Fountain have served coaching roles.

RUSSIAL: Siobhan Heekin-Canedy and Dmitri Dun (UKR) perform in the team ice dance short dance program during the Sochi 2014 Olympic Winter Games at Iceberg Skating Palace.

Ravindra Jadeja hits over the top in New Zealand vs India, 1st Test, Auckland, 4th day.

New Zealand snare 40-run win over India A UCKLAND —Neil Wagner was the India opted to go on all-out attack. 2. He had Kohli caught low down by toast of New Zealand Sunday as they pulled off a dramatic 40-run win in the first Test against India at Eden Park. Wagner, New Zealand’s go-to man, twice turned the game with quick wickets to wrest control away from India in a match that see-sawed throughout. New Zealand, with innings of 503 and 105, had set India (first innings 202) a winning target of 407 and had them all out for 366. On a riveting fourth day of the David and Goliath clash between the eighth-ranked New Zealand and second-ranked India, the outcome was settled in the final session when India lost their last five wickets for 98 runs. Wagner made the crucial breakthroughs, earning high praise from captain Brendon McCullum whose own double-century provided the backbone of New Zealand’s huge first innings. “Neil Wagner, in particular, was the standout for me today. He epitomised everything we want to be known for as a team and he did it in a clutch moment as well,” McCullum said. “I can’t talk highly enough of him. Obviously Trent (Boult) and Tim (Southee) are our spearheads but Neil Wagner is such an important piece of the puzzle for us.” At tea on Sunday, with four sessions remaining, India needed 137 to win while New Zealand needed five wickets. As the target narrowed and wickets fell, rival skippers McCullum and Mahendra Singh Dhoni were forced to rethink their strategies. When the first over after tea saw the removal of Rohit Sharma for 19,

Dhoni and Ravindra Jadeja belted 54 in under seven overs in what Dhoni described as deliberate “risky cricket” to put pressure on New Zealand. But the gamble did not pay off. Boult ended their slogfest by sending Jadeja packing for a rapid 26 off 21 deliveries. “We got quite a few runs but we needed maybe 20 runs more and then we could have changed gears,” Dhoni said. “Maybe that was one shot too many but we got close to the target because of that period.” Zaheer Khan joined Dhoni in a 25-run stand, forcing McCullum to spell his senior bowler Southee and go back to Wagner. He instantly broke the partnership to reduce India to 349-8. With Dhoni left to try to get his side home Wagner struck again, bowling the Indian captain for 39. Boult ended the innings when Ishant Sharma was caught behind for four. The dismissal gave B.J. Watling his sixth catch of the innings, a world record fourth innings performance by a wicketkeeper. He equalled McCullum’s New Zealand record of nine for the match. Wagner ended the innings with four for 62 while Southee and Boult took three apiece. Earlier, India were cruising at lunch after resuming on 871 and getting through the morning session for the loss of only Cheteshwar Pujara (23) to be 180-2. New Zealand regained control after lunch when Wagner produced his first magic spell, toiling with the old ball to remove Shikhar Dhawan and Virat Kohli who had eased their way to 222-

wicketkeeper Watling for 67 before nicking Dhawan’s glove to remove the opener for 115. New Zealand were fortunate to claim their third wicket of the session when Boult rapped Ajinkya Rahane (18) on the pads with the first delivery of the new ball in the last over before tea. —AFP

New Zealand first innings ...... 5 0 3 India first innings .................... 2 0 2 New Zealand second innings .. 1 0 5 India 2nd innings ......................... R M Vijay b Southee ....................... 13 S Dhawan b Wagner .................. 115 CA Pujara b Southee ................... 23 V Kohli b Wagner ........................ 67 RG Sharma b Southee .................. 19 AM Rahane lbw b Boult ............. 18 MS Dhoni b Wagner ................... 39 RA Jadeja b Boult ........................ 26 Z Khan b Wagner ........................ 17 Sharma b Boult ............................... 4 Mohammed Shami not out ........... 0 Extras: (b 12, lb 7, w 2, nb 4) ....... 25 Total (all out; 96.3 overs; 430 mins) 366 (3.79 runs per over) Fall of wickets 1-36 , 2-96 , 3-222 , 4248 , 5-268 , 6-270 , 7-324 , 8-349 , 9362 , 10-366 Bowling .......................... O-M-R-W TA Boult ......................... 23.3-2-86-3 TG Southee ....................... 23-4-81-3 VN Wagner ....................... 25-8-62-4 CJ Anderson ....................... 7-1-22-0 IS Sodhi ............................. 15-2-78-0 KS Williamson .................... 3-0-18-0

Woods’s niece wins first major title GOLD

C O A S T — Cheyenne Woods, niece of 14time major winner Tiger Woods, claimed the first major title of her career by winning the Australian Ladies Masters. The 23year-old American shot a final-round four-underpar 69 at Royal Pines on Sunday to finish on 16 under overall and win by two shots. Local amateur Minjee Lee finished second after also carding a 69. “This is a huge accomplishment for me,” said Woods, who finished with five birdies and a bogey. “I’ve been pro for two years and, for the majority of it, people just think of me as Tiger Woods’s niece so now I have a game of my own and I have a title now, a win, which is exciting. “It’s nice now to say to people that I can play and I’m not just a name. “Growing up with the last name of Woods, there’s a lot of expectations and pressure and spotlight on you but I always knew that I was able to win.” Woods won a minor event in the United States in 2012, but this was the biggest of her career so far and earned her a two-year exemption into Ladies European Tour events.

“I always knew I’d be able to compete with these ladies so now it’s kind of a weight off my shoulders because now everybody knows, not just me,” she added. Lee, 17, had been level with Woods until the American closed with three birdies in her final six holes to seal victory. South African Stacy Lee Bregman and Swede Camilla Lennarth finished in a tie for third, two shots behind Lee.—AFP

Cricket in Kenya ‘dead’, says former captain Aasif Karim BIPIN DANI MUMBAI—There were hardly any fans at Nairobi’s Jomo Kenyatta International Airport-NBO to greet the Kenyan team which earlier this week returned from New Zealand after losing the ODI status. According to Aasif Karim, who was Kenya’s first captain after the team got the ODI status in 1997, the cricket in his country is now dead. Speaking exclusively over telephone from Nairobi, he says, “I am not surprised as I had seen this fall coming almost 5 to 7 years back. Kenya cricket was in coma for the last 5 years and now dead and buried”. “Having began from the humble beginning to play for Kenya at the age of 17 in 1980 and finished at the world cup 2003,

In south Africa-semi finals,it pains me to see where Kenya cricket has gone”. When Kenya got ODI status 1997,I was appointed captain. At that time,bangladssh also got the ODi status. Until 2003,Kenya was 8-1 ahead between the 2 countries. Since then it has been a disaster for Kenya. Whereas Bangladsh has moved on to a much a higher level.”, he added. “All stack holders will need to get together to chart a way forward to revive cricket in Kenya. If at all that happens sincerely,correctly, I think it will take at least 10 years to be a force In international cricket at the top level”. “We have excellent facilities,weather. We just need dedicated and competent people to run cricket !, he signed off.


Healthy sleep key to ward off depression later

A

genetic study of adult twins and a community-based study of ado lescents has reported novel links between sleep duration and depression. Don’t sleep deprive yourself as it may be a precursor for major depression as you reach adulthood - occurring before other symptoms of major depression and additional mood disorders hit you hard. A genetic study of adult twins and a community-based study of adolescents has reported novel links between sleep duration and depression. Both short and excessively long sleep durations appear to activate genes related to depressive symptoms. “We were surprised that the heritability of depressive symptoms in twins with very short sleep was nearly twice the heritability in twins sleeping normal amounts of time,” said Nathaniel Watson, associate professor of neurology and co-director of the University of Washington Medicine Sleep Centre in Seattle. This new research emphasises that we can make an investment in our health by prioritising sleep, added M. Safwan Badr, president, American Academy of Sleep Medicine. A study of 1,788 adult twins is the first to demonstrate a gene by environment interaction between self-reported habitual sleep duration and depressive

symptoms. Results suggest that sleep durations outside the normal range increase the genetic risk for depressive symptoms. Among twins with a normal sleep duration of seven to 8.9 hours per night, the total heritability of depressive symptoms was 27 percent. However, the genetic influence on depressive symptoms increased to 53 per cent among twins with a short sleep duration of five hours per night and 49 percent among those who reported sleeping 10 hours per night. Another study of 4,175 individuals between age 11 and 17 is the first to document reciprocal effects for major depression and short sleep duration among adolescents using prospective data. Sleeping six hours or less per night increases the risk for major depression, which, in turn, increases the risk for decreased sleep among adolescents, said the study. Optimising sleep may be one way to maximise the effectiveness of treatments for depression such as psychotherapy. “Healthy sleep is a necessity for physical, mental and emotional well-being,” said Badr. According to Robert E. Roberts, professor of behavioural sciences at University of Texas, “sleep disturbance and hours of sleep should be part of the medical history of adolescents to ascertain risk”. The studies were published in the journal Sleep.

A group photo on the occassion of 66th independence day of Sri Lanka shows Sri Lankan Consul General HMB Herath (3rd R) with his senior conusel and staff.

Ebad contacts Nisar

Torture of MQM workers IRFAN ALIGI KARACHI —Sindh

Governor Dr Ishrat Ul Ebad Khan had contacted the Federal Interior Minister Chaudhry Nisar Ali Khan over kidnappings and extra-judicial murders of workers of the Muttahidda Qaumi Movement (MQM) by the law enforcement agencies. The Federal Interior Minister assured the Sindh Governor of full enquiry into the allegations of torturing the workers of the MQM especially Fahad, who was taken into custody by Karachi Police on his return after getting married Sunday night. Sources said that the Federal Interior Minister had however showed no extra high response and just said that all the parties should support the government on the targeted operation in Karachi against the criminals.

The Consul General of the Federal Republic of Germany Dr.Tilo Klinner, hosted a dinner for delegates of the Karachi Literature Festival at a local hotel. Picture shows Ambassador Dr.Michael Koch, special Envoy of German Government for Afghanistan and Pakistan, PGBF, Mr.Qazi Sajid Ali, Mr.Byram D.Avari, Mrs.Luba Klinner, Ms.Amina Seyid, and diplomats from Germany and SriLanka

German envoy fetes KLF participants K ARACHI —Pakistan has a beauty that can best be seen in its culture and rich traditions. This was said by Consul General of the Federal Republic of Germany Dr Tilo Klinner at a dinner hosted by him for guests participating in the three-day 5th Karachi Literature Festival. The German diplomat said literature opens the horizons and expands the vision of humans, guiding them toward accommodation and harmony with their fellow beings and promoting peace. He added the Karachi Literature Festival Peace Prize 2014 is meant to recognise and honour such achievements. Dr Klinner said the Peace Prize is joint project of the Consulate General of Germany in Karachi, the Embassy of Germany in Islamabad and the

Karachi Literature Festival. It aims to recognise books promoting peace, international understanding and tolerance. It is awarded by a jury comprising eminent Pakistani academics and human rights activists and carries a prize of 3,000 euros. Special Envoy of the government of Federal Republic of Germany for Afghanistan/Pakistan who has also served as German ambassador to Pakistan, Dr Michael Koch, said he was glad to be back among so many friends. He said books and literature bring out the best in mankind. He added that literature celebrates diverse cultures and encourages tolerance of one a n o t h e r . The Managing Director of Oxford University Press and founding member of Karachi

4th batch of youth Parliament STAFF REPORTER KARACHI .—Pakistan association for

young leaders development and training announces its 4th batch of National Youth of Parliament of Pakistan. Application forms have been placed on the website (www.youthparliament.net.pk) of national youth parliament of Pakistan, anyone interested to be member of national youth parliament of Pakistan’s batch-2014, may download application form from website & submits it to the mailing address mentioned on application form, 15th March is the last date to submit application forms, only 300 inspiring young leaders from across Pakistan will be selected after interviewing all the applicants.

Literature Festival Ameena Saiyid said the festival is meant to pay tribute to and celebrate authors, books, ideas and readers.

Measures to be taken for uplifting Civic Center K ARACHI —Administrator Karachi zens visit Civic Center for their vari- would be taken against relevant deRauf Akhtar Farooqui has said that traffic improvement Plan should be prepared for the Civic Center in which separate places should be allocated for parking whereas measures should be taken for uplifting of Civic Center. He said this in a directive to the departmental heads of Engineering and Transport and Communication Departments on Sunday. On this occasion Director General Engineering Department Niaz Ahmed Soomro, Senior Director Transport and Communication Muhammad Ather and other officers were also present. He said that a good number of citi-

ous works whereas the offices of Sindh Building Control Authority, Excise and Taxation, KESC and other departments also here due to which vehicles were parked around Civic Center in an unplanned manner which affects traffic on the University Road. He said that separate parking is made near central offices in whole world whereas central office of any organization shows its performance. Administrator Karachi directed that only those vehicles should be allowed to park on first floor of Civic Center which have been given parking permission here otherwise strict action

partment. He also said that arrangements of cleanliness should be made around Civic Center. Officers of the departments were responsible for cleanliness condition in the offices. They should take measures for cleanliness and renovation in their offices so that employees working there could get better environment.He said that security arrangements were improved in central office however it should be enhanced further. Parking of motorcycles on various locations here would also be banned and separate parking place would be allocated for these.— AAP

Indian HC eulogizes services of Didi Nirmala Deshpande STAFF REPORTER KARACHI —High

Commissioner of India in Islamabad Dr T. C. A. Raghavan on Sunday eulogized the services of the peace activist Didi Nirmala Deshpande for bringing people of the both neighbouring countries, India and Pakistan, closer to each other and underlined the need for continuous spread of her message of love across South Asian region. He was speaking at the Plaque Unveiling Ceremony to dedicate a block of PILER Centre to Didi Nirmala Deshpande (1929-2008) who was a Member of the Indian Rajya Sabha (upper house) and dedicated advocate of peace between two countries i.e. India and Pakistan. The ceremony, organized by Pakistan Institute of Labour Education and

Research (PILER) was attended by academicians, human rights and peace activists, social workers, trade union leaders and notables of the area. Earlier, speaking on the occasion, Karamat Ali, Executive Director of PILER said that Didi Nirmala Deshpande was equally admired in Pakistan because of her message of love and advocate of people-to-people contact. The government of Pakistan had conferred her the ‘Sitara-e-Imtiaz’ for her services for peace. B. M. Kutty of PILER recalled her services and said that at the time of World Social Forum in 2006 in Karachi, Pakistan government was reluctant to issue visas to the Indian participants. She personally came via Lahore to Islamabad and met with then President General Pervaiz Musharraf and on her request visas for Indian participants

Sindh Festival: Sufi Night and Basant Mela record largest attendance STAFF REPORTER KARACHI. —Under the Sindh Festival, the Sufi (Saint) nigh and Basant mela were held at the Bagh Ibn-e Qasim and Bara Dari respectively on Saturday and Sunday nights. Pakistan People’s Party Parliamentarian Chairman Bilawal Bhutto Zardari had graced the two festivities with his presence and Aseefa Bhutto Zardari and Bakhtawar Bhutto Zardari had flanked him. Folk singers performed at the Sufi Night with traditional folk and Sufi songs while on Basant Festival, Bilawal had flown a kite to make a formal commencement of kite flying at night, which was never seen before. Beside, kiteflying, the folk artists performed to amuse the participants.Meanwhile, The 1st Sindh International Film Festival is being held in Karachi on Feb 10 and 11, 2014 as part of the wider Sindh Festival which has been set up to celebrate Pakistan’s heritage and culture. It will be sited at Neuplex Cinemas, the city’s leading multiplex. One of these main screens will be dedicated to the “Raindance Selection”, a specially-programmed strand which has been put to-

gether by the Raindance Film Festival and The Independent Film Trust, and which will feature some of the best films from the 21st Raindance Film Festival, which took place between Sept 25 and Oct 6, 2013.There will be a Red Carpet Event on Monday at 7pm, attendees include the dazzling Indian actress Shabana Azmi, English actor Roger Ashton-Griffiths who has appeared in numerous high profile films including Martin Scorsese’s Gangs of New York, Woody Allen’s You Will Meet a Tall Dark Stranger, and will be portraying Mace Tayrell in season four of Game of Thrones and many directors and producers who will be conducting Q&A sessions following the screening of their films over the two-day festival.“The Sindh Festival team is excited to curate an eclectic collection of films from all corners of the world for Pakistani audiences. We received an overwhelming amount of submissions and hope you enjoy our final selection of up to 50 shorts, documentaries and features, touching on diverse and often untold stories “, commented Assad Zulfiqar Khan, Director of the Sindh International Film Festival.

were issued by Pakistan government instantly. The Indian High Commissioner and his wife were gifted traditional Ajraks, books and shield. Later, the Indian High Commissioner unveiled the plaque to dedicate a block off PILER Centre to Didi Nirmala Deshpande. Those who attended the ceremony included Dr Jaffar Ahmed of Pakistan Study Centre of University of Karachi, Justice (Retd.) Majida Rizvi, Dr Riaz Shaikh of Shaheed Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto Institute of Science and Technology, Suleman G. Abro of Sindh Agriculture and Forestry Workers Coordination Organistaion, Zulfiqar Halepoto, Shamsuddin of HRCP, trade union leaders Habibuddin Junaidi, Shakeela Asghar, Rehana Yasmin and many others.


Healthy sleep key to ward off depression later

A

genetic study of adult twins and a community-based study of ado lescents has reported novel links between sleep duration and depression. Don’t sleep deprive yourself as it may be a precursor for major depression as you reach adulthood - occurring before other symptoms of major depression and additional mood disorders hit you hard. A genetic study of adult twins and a community-based study of adolescents has reported novel links between sleep duration and depression. Both short and excessively long sleep durations appear to activate genes related to depressive symptoms. “We were surprised that the heritability of depressive symptoms in twins with very short sleep was nearly twice the heritability in twins sleeping normal amounts of time,” said Nathaniel Watson, associate professor of neurology and co-director of the University of Washington Medicine Sleep Centre in Seattle. This new research emphasises that we can make an investment in our health by prioritising sleep, added M. Safwan Badr, president, American Academy of Sleep Medicine. A study of 1,788 adult twins is the first to demonstrate a gene by environment interaction between self-reported habitual sleep duration and depressive

symptoms. Results suggest that sleep durations outside the normal range increase the genetic risk for depressive symptoms. Among twins with a normal sleep duration of seven to 8.9 hours per night, the total heritability of depressive symptoms was 27 percent. However, the genetic influence on depressive symptoms increased to 53 per cent among twins with a short sleep duration of five hours per night and 49 percent among those who reported sleeping 10 hours per night. Another study of 4,175 individuals between age 11 and 17 is the first to document reciprocal effects for major depression and short sleep duration among adolescents using prospective data. Sleeping six hours or less per night increases the risk for major depression, which, in turn, increases the risk for decreased sleep among adolescents, said the study. Optimising sleep may be one way to maximise the effectiveness of treatments for depression such as psychotherapy. “Healthy sleep is a necessity for physical, mental and emotional well-being,” said Badr. According to Robert E. Roberts, professor of behavioural sciences at University of Texas, “sleep disturbance and hours of sleep should be part of the medical history of adolescents to ascertain risk”. The studies were published in the journal Sleep.

Students of local schools presenting tableau during a ceremony at Children Complex.

865 KG unhygienic meat burnt MUZAFFAR ALI LAHORE—Chief Minister’s Special advisor for Livestock, MPA, Ch Arshad Jutt along with District Livestock Officer Ghulam Hussain Bhutta and his team raided on Sunday in different areas of city and captured more than 865 KG unhygienic and died animal meat. Later on this meat was burnt in the burning unit of Lahore Meat Processing Complex which is especially designed to destroy the meat which is no table for human consumption. While talking on the occasion, Ch Arshad Jutt said that they were striving to provide healthy meat to the citizens.

Provincial Food Minister Bilal Yasin checking prices and uality of commodities during his visit to Atwar Bazaar.

Toll-free helpline for addressing complaints of women CITY REPORTER L AHORE —Women Development Department Punjab has launched toll-free helpline 0800-92444 for addressing the complaints of women. Provincial Minister for Women Development Hameeda Waheed-ud-Din informed that the helpline will operate initially from 8:00am to 4:00pm and women from all over the province associated with any sector or victims of domestic violence would be able to get their complaints registered at the

helpline. The Minister said that three desks have been set up at Women Development Department where the staff would take immediate notice of the complaints and send them to concerned departments and institutions for action. Hameeda Waheed-udDin said that a computerized record of the complaints received at the department would be maintained and a report would also be submitted to the government. She further said that launching of toll-free helpline would be another important step in the protection of women.

Musharaf faces consequences of his actions: Dr. Abdul Qadeer MUZAFFAR ALI LAHORE —”Musharraf is facing the consequences of his actions and now like me and Gen. (retd) Ziauddin are free. Pakistan’s defense is undefeatable and on the other hand, Shariat cannot be promulgated through coercion; blood shedding of innocent children and women instead Islam can prevail by winning the hearts of humans. Constitution of Pakistan is based on Quran and Sunnah; that is why it is mentioned in it that all the laws, rules and regulations in contradiction or in derogation of Islam will be void,”

Three scorched in Lahore acid attack, CM takes notice L AHORE —Two

women and a child were injured when a man hurled acid at them over a domestic dispute here on Sunday. Police said that the accused hailing from Badami Bagh area of Lahore was in differences with his wife over domestic issues. On Sunday the couple exchanged hot words after which the husband hurled acid injuring his wife, oneyear-old son and a relative woman. Face and body of the victims was affected in the acid attack and they were rushed to Mayo Hospital for treatment. The accused managed to escape after committing the crime. Chief Minister Punjab Shahbaz Sharif taking the notice of the incident has sought the report from the authorities and directed for stern action against the accused.—INP

these thoughts were shared by speakers in the launching ceremony of Qayyum Nizami’s book “Muamlaat-e-Rasool SAW” held at TECH Society Club here on Sunday. Eminent Scientist and founder of Pakistan’s nuclear programme Dr. Abdul Qadeer Khan presided over while Secretary General, Jamat-e-Islami Liaquat Baloch, Mujeeb-ur-Rehman Shami, Vice Chancellor Punjab University Prof. Dr. Mujahid Kamran, Engr. Abdul Majeed Khan, Zubair Sheikh, Jameel Gishkori, L AHORE —Police have arJustice (retd) Nasira Javed, Tanvir rested 770 proclaimed ofShahzad and Yasir Pirzada spoke. fenders and 653 court absconders during a crackdown in the last month. According to a spokespolio affected children, religious scholars, man, police have registered journalists and people from all walks of life. 421 cases against 421 acThe provincial Health department vac- cused for having illicit weapcinators administered polio drops to chil- ons and recovered two dren and distributed polio awareness pam- Kalashinkoves, 14 rifles, 22 phlets amongst the masses during the walk. guns, 353 revolvers/ pistols, The participants stressed the role of nine daggers, one-carbine every individual in society in the eradica- and 2,236 rounds from their possession.—APP tion of this disease.—APP

Standard, transparency in development projects : Shahbaz CITY R EPORTER L A H O R E —Punjab Chief Minister Muhammad Shahbaz Sharif has said that Pakistan Muslim League-N, in the light of its manifesto, is spending billions of rupees on the development of the country and projects of provision of basic amenities to the masses. He said that standard, transparency, and rapid completion of development schemes is the policy of the government and a corruption-free culture has been promoted in the province. He said that every penny of public money is being spent on the welfare of the people. He said that the journey of progress and prosperity of the masses started during the last five year’s tenure is being continued. He said that lakhs of poor families are benefiting from the welfare projects of the government and implementation of such programmes will be continued in future as well. He said that service to the people is a form of worship and PMLN during its tenures has always set new records of service to the masses

while the promises made to the people will be honoured. He was talking to Assembly Members of various districts who met him, here Sunday. The elected representatives informed the Chief Minister about the pace of implementation of development and welfare programmes in their respective areas. The Chief Minister said that through honesty, hard work and public service, Punjab will be made a model province with regard to progress and development. He said that after successful experience in Lahore, metro bus projects are being started in Multan, Faisalabad and Rawalpindi. He said that the way Lahore metro bus project has been appreciated at local level and abroad is unprecedented in the recent history. Shahbaz Sharif said that Lahore metro bus project is an excellent example of utilization of national resources on the people. He said that metro bus projects in Rawalpindi, Multan and Faisalabad will also be a masterpiece of standard and transparency and lakhs of people will avail speedy, economical and com-

fortable transport facilities. He said that metro bus projects in Rawalpindi, Multan and Faisalabad will be completed at the same speed at which it was executed in Lahore. He said that modern infrastructure plays a key role in rapid development and promotion of economic activities, therefore, a huge sum of Rs.91 billion is being spent in the current year for infrastructure development. He said that a network of roads, bridges and underpasses is being laid in the province and more than Rs.29 billion are being spent on the construction of new roads. The Chief Minister said that in addition to the provincial metropolis, billions of rupees are also being utilized on the provision of infrastructure and necessary facilities in Faisalabad, Multan, Rawalpindi, Gujranwala and other major cities. He said that completion of development projects on priority basis in less-developed areas is the policy of the government and it was PML-N which set the example of utilization of more development funds than the ratio of population in south Punjab.

Around one mln Lahorities suffering from diabetes

LAHORE—Over 100,0000 Lahorities have been suffering from diabetes which should be handled properly in future to reduce diabetics. This was stated by Head of Diabetes Management Centre of Services Hospital Prof Khadija Irfan Khawaja in an exclusive talk with APP here on Sunday. She said in 2000 Pakistan was ranked sixth with 5.2 million patients of diabetes in the world which had became fifth in 2030 with 13.9 million diabetics. She said in the city number of diabetics were increasing at a ratio of ten percent. She said in Diabetes Management Center of Services Hospital only 5,157 dia-

betics were recorded in 2002 which had reached to 60,823 patients in 2013 and this figure was escalating rapidly and continuesly. A spread of diabetes in the country needed some immediate measures and public awareness was must to control it, she added. Prof Khadija said it had been observed that a ratio of diabetes in women was much higher than men in the country. Responding a question, she said mostly women had no opportunity to walk and exercise as they often remained in houses due to which a ratio of diabetes in women were observed two-third as compared to men. —APP

Police arrest 1,420 POs,COs

Polio awareness walk LAHORE—A polio awareness walk from the Regal Chowk to Faisal Chowk on The Mall was held here Sunday to create awareness on the importance of polio vaccination and fight against the endemic of polio. The walk was arranged by the Kiran Welfare Foundation in collaboration with the UNICEF, Rotary Int’l and Akhuwat Health Services which was attended by

Labourers busy in construction work of interchange at Azadi Chowk in Provincial Capital.

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