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India-Pak nuclear war to ‘end civilization’ with famine W ASHINGTON —A nuclear war between India and Pakistan would set off a global famine that could kill two billion people and effectively end human civilization, a study said on Tuesday. Even if limited in scope, a conflict with nuclear weapons would wreak havoc in the at-

Karzai lashes out at US ‘threats’ PARIS—Afghanistan President Hamid Karzai lashed out at the United States, accusing it of making threats in the dispute over an agreement to keep U.S. troops in the country beyond 2014. In an interview published Tuesday by the French daily Le Monde, Karzai says the U.S. is “absolutely” acting like a colonial power in its attempts to force him to sign the bilateral security agreement by the end of this year. The paper quoted him as saying: “The threats they are making, ‘We won’t pay salaries, we’ll drive you into a civil war.’ These are threats.” Washington and NATO officials say the pact is critical

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Army Chief Gen Raheel visits LoC STAFF REPORTER RAWALPINDI—Pakistan’s Chief of Army Staff (COAS) General Raheel Sharif visited troops in forward localities along the Line of Control (LoC).

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mosphere and devastate crop yields, with the effects multiplied as global food markets went into turmoil, the report said. The Nobel Peace Prize-winning International Physicians for the Prevention of Nuclear War and Physicians for Social Responsibility released an initial

peer-reviewed study in April 2012 that predicted a nuclear famine could kill more than a billion people. In a second edition, the groups said they widely underestimated the impact in China and calculated that the world’s most populous country would face severe food insecurity.

Pakistan wants peace, stability in Asia: PM Calls for relations with India on mutual respect SHARAFAT KAZMI ISLAMABAD—Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif said on Tuesday that Pakistan’s government was working on war footing to tackle terrorism and the energy crisis in the country. Addressing the Asian Parliamentary Assembly here, Prime Minister Sharif said Pakistan’s parliament was strengthened by a peaceful transition of power. He added that Asian countries could learn from each other’s experiences. The prime minister asked the Asian Parliamentary Assem-

BD court stays JI leader’s execution

bly to play the role of a lynchpin to generate joint strategies to effectively deal with the critical issues of energy, growth and environment, which are common to the most of the Asia. He said on Pakistani side they have tried to turn a new

Picture on Back Page page with all our neighbours and prepared to look at the larger picture and have reached out to Afghanistan and also India. He said while Pakistan may succeed on its own and through its own

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NA demands immediate halt to drone strikes STAFF REPORTER

DHAKA—Bangladesh’s highest I SLAMABAD —The National court on Tuesday halted the execution of a top Islamist just 90 minutes before he was to become the first person executed for war crimes committed during the country’s bloody independence fight. Supreme Court chamber judge Syed Mahmud Hossain

endeavors, the success will be quicker, greater, and more sustainable if it is underwritten by the entire region moving together. Nawaz Sharif said if Asian countries succeed to utilize their resources in a proper way and maintain their economic growth, they can overcome poverty by 2050. He said Pakistan having geostrategic location is desirous to work with neighbouring countries to give boost to trade and economic activities in the region. He said 3 billion people

Assembly has unanimously passed a resolution demanding an immediate halt to drone attacks on Pakistani territory. The resolution moved by Naeema Kishwar Khan and others in the House Tuesday, strongly condemned the US drone attacks saying these constitute violation of the principles of the Charter

According to an ISPR press release, General Raheel Sharif appreciated the high state or morale, operational preparedness and vigil being maintained by troops on the front line. The army chief also paid rich tribute to the sacrifices of the officers and soldiers of the Pakistan Army In his opening remarks the STAFF REPORTER along the LoC. Finance Minister said that the The COAS was briefed by I S L A M A B A D — S e n a t o r Government the local formation comMohammad Ishaq Dar Federal has constituted mander on the prevailing a steering comsecurity situation at the LoC. finance Minister, says the gov- mittee which ernment has a clear road map to build foreign exchange reserves will submit its up to $ 20 billion in the next 3 recommendations for proyears. Ishaq Dar said this in a motion of Ismeeting with the heads of Com- lamic Banking mercial Banks here on Tuesday in the country and exchanged views on the cur- by 31st DeKARACHI—The metropolis rent economic, monetary and cember, 2014.This will provide policy framework for Islamic witnessed yet another fiscal situation of Pakistan. sanguinary day with ten killings in different areas during last 24 hours. Some unknown killers sprayed bullets on a vehicle in New Karachi area of Godhra, killing owner of a food center, Abdus Samad, on the spot. Beheaded body of a 20-year girl was found from Northern Elevated as the 20th Chief JusBypass. The deceases could ZUBAIR QURESHI tice of Pakistan in June 2005, not be identified as yet. A 60-year man Aftab was ISLAMABAD —Chief Justice gunned down in Arambagh Iftikhar Muhammad Chaudhry area of the city. Another man is not only celebrating his 65th was injured in a firing incident birthday tomorrow (Thursday), in Preedy. Meantime, two he is also doffing his robe the same day. Continued on Page 7 Serving the country as Chief Justice under three Presidents, Gen (Retd) Pervez Musharraf, Asif Ali Zardari and Today’s issue of Pakistan Mamnoon Hussain, CJP Observer carries a 2-Page Iftikhar Muhammad Chaudhry Special Report on ‘Day of Inwill undoubtedly be rememdependence of Kazakhstan’ bered as the most influential top on Pages 14 and 15. judge in the country’s history.

“A billion people dead in the developing world is obviously a catastrophe unparalleled in human history. But then if you add to that the possibility of another 1.3 billion people in China being at risk, we are entering something that is clearly the end of civilization,”

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World unites for Mandela memorial Obama shakes hands with Castro

US President Barack Obama shakes hands with Cuban President Raul Castro during the official memorial service for former South African President Nelson Mandela at FNB Stadium on Tuesday in Johannesburg, South Africa.

SOWETO—President Barack Obama on Tuesday shook hands with Raul Castro, leader of America’s Cold War foe Cuba, in a rare gesture at the memorial service in South Africa for Nelson Mandela. Obama offered the handshake before taking the stage to eulogise Mandela, but minutes later, made a clear swipe at states like Cuba, saying those who proclaim Mandela’s legacy must honour its meaning by easing curbs on freedom. The handshake between Obama and the brother who took over the duties of longtime Cuban President Fidel Castro was seen by millions around the world on live television and was confirmed by a senior US official to AFP. The Cuban government

Govt ordered to produce 35 ‘missing persons’ in a week

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No threat from US to hold up funds: FO

of United Nations‚ international laws and humanitarian norms. Speaking on the resolution Minister for States and Frontier Regions Lt General [retired] Abdul Qadir Baloch said the incumbent government has LIAQAT TOOR strongly opposed the drone strikes from day one and maintained that these amount to vio- I SLAMABAD—Contradicting lation of Pakistan’s sovereignty. any threat given by US SecreHe said the government is us- tary of Defence Chuck Hagel to hold up US funds to Pakistan, if Continued on Page 7 land routes were blocked for NATO supplies, Foreign Office Spokesman Aizaz Ahmad Chaudhry said on Tuesday saying Hagel’s meetings in Islamabad with Pakistani leadership were held in a friendly and cordially atmosphere. In response to media reports, the Spokesperson said the two sides held in-depth exchanges on the whole range of Banking in the country. The con- issues of mutual interest. The stitution of the Steering commit- two sides agreed to work to tee and its terms of reference strengthen Pakistan-US relahave already been notified and tions and reaffirmed the imporreleased to the media, he added. tance of Pakistan-US strategic The Finance Minister said partnership for peace and stabilthat we have to work together ity in the region. to keep the forex market stable Taking the opportunity of and acknowledged the help and Secretary Hagel’s visit, our side cooperation extended by Com- highlighted and conveyed mercial Banks in discouraging Pakistan’s deep concern over the speculators which is evident continuing US drone strikes, from the fact that the inter-bank stressing that drone strikes were rate today closed at Rs.107.78 counter-productive to our ef-

Dar, bankers discuss steps to overcome forex crisis Reserves to touch $ 20 b mark in 3 years

Karachi violence claims ten lives

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Era of suo motu comes to an end After heading judiciary for eight years, CJP calls it a day Chief Justice assumed an iconic held incommunicado at his offigure during the days when he ficial residence when Gen was deposed from office and Musharraf declared emergency lawyers as well as civil society in the country on November 3, launched a movement for his 2007. The CJP was eventually restoration. reinstated on March 22, 2009, The entire tenure of the chief following massive and counjustice remained a tumultuous trywide public protests. one beginning with his removal At that time, he was unfrom office twice in 2007. He doubtedly considered a symbol was first deposed by the former of resistance against dictatorpresident Pervez Musharraf in ship and corruption however, March 2007 and a reference after his taking charge of the against him was filed with the office in 2009, in the latter Supreme Judicial Council. The years leaders of the same legal chief justice had to leave his of- fraternity that had come on fice again the same year and was Continued on Page 7

OBSERVER REPORT I SLAMABAD —The Supreme Court on Tuesday ordered the federal government to produce all the thirty five ‘missing persons’ before it in seven days. The order, issued by a threemember bench headed by Chief Justice Iftikhar Muhammad Chaudhry, also directed the fed-

eral government to take action against the persons involved in unlawful detention of citizens. Hearing the case pertaining to the recovery of 35 ‘missing persons’, the three-member bench said that the court’s earlier orders had not been implemented, which was unacceptable. The apex court said that the

recovery of the missing persons was the responsibility of the prime minister and his government, and said that the government should stop unlawful detention of the citizens in the future. The chief justice said that it had now been established that the military unlawfully took

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Court orders cut in POL prices Declares 9 pc GST on CNG unlawful STAFF REPORT I SLAMABAD —The Supreme Court on Tuesday announced its verdict in the load-shedding and petroleum prices case and or-

dered the relevant authorities to reduce power outages and petroleum tariff. The decision was made by a three-member bench in Islamabad. While announcing the ver-

dict, the court stated that the National Electronic Power Regulatory Authority and Pakistan Electric Power Company should install smart meters for

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Islamabad ready to offer its road, rail routes to all regional countries STAFF REPORTER LAHORE—Federal Railways Minister Khwaja Saad Rafique said on Tuesday that Islamabad was ready to offer its road and rail routes to all regional countries including China, India, Iran, Afghanistan, Turkey, Bangladesh and up to Central Asia. He was talking to the media after addressing the “Regional Conference on Strengthening Transport Connectivity and Trade Facilitation in South and South-West Asia” jointly organized by United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Asia and Pacific (UNESCAP) and Ministery of Commerce, Government of Pakistan, at a local hotel. Opening up of the trade

Govt offers internship to 20,000 educated youth DERA GHAZI KHAN—Divisional Commissioner Muhammad Ameen Chaudhry has said the government will offer internship to 20,000 educated youth, their age ranging from 16 years to 30 years. Addressing a meeting on Punjab Youth Internship Programme 2013-14, he said that youngsters would be provided with Rs 12,000 per month. The internees would get the honoraria through easy pay card from the bank of Punjab. He said that 16,000 youngsters would be imparted training in private institutions and 4000 in government institutions. The educated youth of different disciplines including in technicians, livestock, agriculture, pharmacy, computer science and others would be offered internship for a period of six months. The internship programme would commence from January 1st to June 30, 2014. Additional secretary sports Javed Akhtar Mehmood, DCO Asif Qureshi, ADC Rajanpur Muhammad Ameen Owaisi and others were also present.—APP

corridor, Khawaja observed, was in the best interest of Pakistan, citing, if these states used our roads and railway tracks, it would generate huge revenues, which was the lifeline of the economy of a country. He sai,d “We have to watch our interests, as we have to eradicate poverty, terrorism and extremism for which an improved and vibrant economy is of vital importance.” Saad Rafique added that Pakistan needed to exploit two main and significant resources i.e. its unique geographical position and human resource of 180 million. He said that opening up of the trade route for India was also in favour of Pakistan, asserting that nations, which had buried their centuries-old feud and differences, had met a definite suc-

cess and developed a lot. “But we are still lagging 200 years behind the developed world, therefore, we have to shun orthodox thinking to move forward on all fronts,” he maintained. In his address at the conference, the Federal Minister said that South, South-West Asia (SSWA) consisted of about half of the world population and rich with huge mineral deposits besides, having importance as a bridge between the North and South but its intra-regional trade was negligible. During fiscal year 2008-9, the intra-regional trade in South Asia was mere 5 percent of the global trade, which was far below its potential, he cited. Though China, India, Turkey and Pakistan are now emerging economies and there

existed several trade agreements among them, their intratrade (import and export) was very low, he mentioned. Khawaja Saad Rafique stressed the need for exploring and taking optimal benefits of the regional trade potential and SAAR, ECO and UNESCAP would have to play a more effective role in this regard. He said the PML-N government was playing an eminent role in establishment of a sub-regional transnational trade corridor and economic zone. The Pakistan government, Khawaja added, was focusing and working on national and regional connectivity to connect China, India, Central Asia, Middle East and Europe while work on Gwadar Port was in progress expeditiously.

SAWI’s goal is to increase regional cooperation STAFF REPORTER ISLAMABAD—The World Bank team comprising of Bill Young, Program Leader (SAWI), Christina Leb, Senior Water Resources Specialist and Mr.Javaid Afzal, Senior Environmental specialist met with the Chairman, PARC here at PARC (HQs) Islamabad in connection with South Asia Water Initiative (SAWI). SAWI is a multi-donor partnership between the World Bank and the Governments of Australia, Norway and the United Kingdom. SAWI’s goal is to increase regional cooperation in the management of the Himalayan River systems and support sustainable,

fair and inclusive development, and climate resilience. SAWI seeks to promote the goals of poverty reduction, economic development, mitigation and adaptation to climate change and water security through significant and measurable improvements in water resources management and development at the regional, international basin and national levels in South Asia. The Purpose of the team visit was to explore the water resources development and management issues in Indus basin system’s and identify partners for collaborative work. Dr. Nadeem Amjad, Member (NRD) and Acting Chairman

PARC briefed about PARC’s network for carrying out research work in different region and ecologies. Mr.Muhammad Yasin, Director CAEWRI and Mr. Zakir Hussain Dahri, PSO, CAEWRI presented the water resources management challenges in the Indus basin, PARC’s endeavors to address these issues and future plan of action. The world bank team appreciated the comprehensive work being carried out by CAEWRI, PARC and expressed a hope for joining hand in future to work for the issues related to water resources development and management in Indus Basin system’s.

SIALKOT: People collecting forms of Prime Minister’s Business Loan Scheme.

KP mineral 2.1m pre-feasibilities downloaded from website resources to be displayed in Women show overwhelming response Canada: Ziaullah to business loan programme: SMEDA PESHAWAR—Special Advisor to Chief Minister Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Ziaulllah Afridi has said that efforts will be made to acquire a stall or booth for showcasing KP mineral potential at the Prospectors & Developers Association of Canada (PDAC), a four-day annual Convention (March 2-5) held in Toronto, Canada. Talking to a Canadian delegation at the Pakhtunkhwa House Monday evening, he said that after the passage of 18th Constitutional Amendment, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa has an opportunity to explore its mineral potential and Canada can provide a lot of help to this Province in transfer of skill, technology, legislation and resources.—APP

Umeed Special School a ray of hope for disabled STAFF REPORTER

ISLAMABAD: Dr Nadeem Amjad, Member NRD and Acting Chairman PARC presiding over a meeting with World Bank delegation, headed by Bill Young (New Delhi) and Christina Leb (USA) at PARC.

Govt reforms agenda aims to solve people’s problems: CS PESHAWAR—Chief Secretary Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Muhammad Shehzad Arbab has said that the PTI government according to its comprehensive reforms agenda to transform government into a true service entity for the citizens has constituted working groups in provincial departments to achieve the objectives. The Reforms Implementation Cell (RIC) had also been created to coordinate the efforts of working groups to accomplish the mission of the government. This he said while addressing the workshop regarding “Retreat on Reforms” at Peshawar on Tuesday.—APP

PESHAWAR—Prominent Physician and Minister for Social Welfare and Women Development Khyber Pukhtunkhwa Dr Mehar Taj Roghani has stressed the need for equipping Special Children with equation so that they could positively contribute in the uplift of Society and National Development. She expressed these views as a chief guest in a ceremony organized by Umeed Special Education School under the auspices of Peshawar Garrison Troops Welfare Community Complex (PGTWCC) in connection with international day of people with disability. Speaking on the occasion Begum Corps Commander Lieutenant General Khalid Rabbani also said that Umeed Special School was the ray of hope for those children who are neglected in our society due to certain deficiencies. To promote healthy activities and to provide congenial environment to these special children this school has been established. The Pak army, it may be mentioned, has been striving to bring the special children back in the main stream. Special children also presented different tablos which were greatly applauded by the audiences.

STAFF REPORTERS LAHORE—Small and Medium Enterprises Development Authority (SMEDA) Website ( established new records of popularity among the masses and especially the youth, as the Prime Minister announced the Youth Business Loan scheme on December 07, 2013. In just two days, after the announcement of the scheme, more than one (1) million Pre-feasibility studies were downloaded from SMEDA website taking the total number of downloads to over a phenomenal 2.1 million! In fact the global ranking of SMEDA website, with content in both English and Urdu, has improved from 505,489 to 79,488 and it now ranks in the top 450 websites in Pakistan, moving from 15,764 to 449 in a short span of 3

months. These downloads have been recorded in over 200 cities and towns all over Pakistan. SMEDA has been given the lead advisory role in implementation of the Prime Minister’s Youth Business Loan scheme. The 56 Pre-feasibility Studies, related FAQs, Financial calculators pertaining to loan repayment, balance sheet, income statement, and cash flow statement, Business Plan Guidelines / Template and Training Video Documentary on ‘How to develop a Business Plan’, along with other related information material, has been specifically designed to cater to the needs of loan applicants, and to assist them in benefitting from the scheme, from the comfort of their homes through accessing SMEDA Website. Loan applicants are also being facilitated through the 25 helpdesks estab-

Young refugee passionate about getting education amid economic challenges QUETTA—Pakistan (UNHCR) – Niamatullah, at the age of 11 is not only struggling to maintain good grades at school but is also helping his father financially to support the family expenses. On weekends he goes to the nearby onion crops and gets paid in onions and Rs. 20 a day (less than $20). Niamatullah and his family live in abject poverty in Muhammad Kheil Refugee Village, in Pakistan’s southwestern province of Balochistan. The refugee village is situated 70km north of the provincial capital Quetta in the middle of a semidesert. Home to some 5,000 people, the majorities of residents are daily-wage labourers and barely make ends meet. In such a low-income state, education is often deemed as a “rich man’s luxury.” There was a time when Niamat’s family thought his work picking onions from the fields of local farmers was more beneficial for the family than his education. His family simply could not cover the costs of the uniform and supplies even though there was a school not far away.

Under the Educate a Child Initiative sponsored by her Highness, Princess Sheikha Moza Bint Nasser of Qatar, UNHCR distributed school supplies, schools bags, uniform, sports kits and solar study-lumps and school enrolments increased. UNHCR across Pakistan provides free primary education to refugee children. In the province of Balochistan, over 17,000 refugee students (11,500 boys and 5,500 girls) in 37 schools and 13 Home Based Girls’ Centres were assisted under the EAC initiative. In addition to this, teachers’ training was also included in the education support EAC project. Niamat is happy about his new uniform, solar lamp and new school bag. He shows off his uniform and said that it felt like he was going to a “real” school. He is a grade three student at Primary School Number 37, in the refugee village. “I did not like digging up onions; I would work from morning till noon and get Rs. 20 only and some onions, maybe a kilo or two, and bring them home.

lished by SMEDA in 16 cities across Pakistan. PESHAWAR: The women of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and Federally Administered Tribal Areas (FATA) are showing outstanding response in Prime Minister ’s Youth Business Loans programme with a mission to take full advantage of this opportunity and play positive role in the national development. Ali Gohar, Incharge PM Youth Business Loan Programme, SMEDA Desk Peshawar told APP on Tuesday that response of women from across Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and FATA is tremendous and very positive. He said women from Chitral to DI Khan and Kohistan to Peshawar are contacting SMEDA offices and regional centres about different aspects of this beneficial program including business schemes, operational and financial plans.

OGDCL developing 6 projects in Sindh, Balochistan, KPK ISLAMABAD—Oil and Gas Development Company Limited (OGDCL) has accelerated exploration activities and speedy development of new discoveries and currently the company is working on six projects to meet the growing domestic demand, a document said. According to a OGDCL document, in these development projects include Unar Pasakhi Deep and Tando Allah Yar Field Development Project (KPD-TAY), Sinjhoro, Uch-11, Jhal Magasi, Nashpa Mela and Sara West. Out of these six projects, three are located in Sindh, two in Balochistan and one in Khyber Pakhtoonkhwa, the document added. Talking to APP, an official of OGDCL said the company’s financial results for the year 2012-13 reflect landmark achievements. This can be witnessed by the fact that company’s sales and profit after tax stood to Rs223.37 billion and Rs90.78 billion respectively resulting in earnings per share of Rs 21.11. The official further said that OGDCL contributed Rs129.12 billion to the national exchequer in the terms of royalty, dividends, corporate tax, general sales tax, excise duty and development surcharge.—APP

Political, fiscal and administrative autonomy must for effective LGs OBSERVER REPORT ISLAMABAD—Provincial laws on Local Government system do not provide for adequate political, fiscal and administrative autonomy, without which local governance will remain weak and therefore LG laws should be reviewed. This was the consensus view of speakers at the PILDAT Inter-Provincial Roundtable on Local Government Laws yesterday. Speaking on the occasion, Shahid Hamid, Senior Advocate Supreme Court, said that effective local government was not possible without fiscal autonomy. Provincial Governments’ role in LG system should be reduced to the level of providing policy guidelines only, adding that the current Provincial Local Government Laws

provide excessive role and arbitrary powers to Provincial Governments. He also advised against the excessive role provided for bureaucracy in the LG systems. Hamid said that minimum devolution of powers has been provided in the Punjab Local Government Act 2013 as key subjects such as health and education have been left under the power of the Provincial Government. He recommended that a minimum level of fiscal guarantee should be given to provinces, such as provinces should say a certain percentage of their respective budgets would be earmarked every year for the use if LG systems. Delimitations, he recommended, should be dealt with by an independent Provincial Local Government Delimitation Authority, with a direct

right of appeal to High Courts. The term of office for LGs, different in each province, also requires a re-think. Ahmed Bilal Mehboob, President PILDAT, said that while provinces have brought respective Local Government laws but the Federal Government has not yet introduced LG laws for FATA, while the LG laws for ICT and Cantonments have only just been introduced in the Parliament. Abdul Qadir, of FES-Pakistan, said that unlike the past when local governments were devised to centralize and legitimize political powers in the centre at the expense of the elected provincial and federal tiers; there should exist no such apprehension now. Instead the local government system of the political governments needs to now open up participatory

spaces for the citizens, and to increase their access to social and political rights and enable them to hold the state directly accountable. Sharing PILDAT’s perspective at the Forum, Ms. Aasiya Riaz, Joint Director PILDAT, said that establishment of an effective Local Government system suffered inordinate delay at the hands of outgoing Governments and Assemblies between 2008-2013. The LG laws now passed by 4 provinces, largely as a result of pressure by the Supreme Court, provide a milestone just by providing for elected political ownership at the local level. However, broadly, the 4 laws are limited in scope and excessively deferential to Provincial Governments. All 4 laws largely do not provide any mean-

ingful devolution of financial, political and administrative powers. Sharing recommendations for reform, she said that direct elections to all offices of Local Governments with necessary political process should be provided in the Local Government system. Delimitation for LG should be undertaken by an independent body and municipal functions should be devolved to lowest tiers of LG system. Local Councils should be fiscally empowered and composition of Local Government Commissions should be balanced. Dr. Arif Alvi, MNA, Chief Whip PTI in the National Assembly; Dr. Shehla Raza, MPA, Deputy Speaker Provincial Assembly of Sindh and Senator Jehangir Badar also spoke on the occasion.

Loan scheme to bring change in life ISLAMABAD—Minister of State for National Health Services, Regulations and Coordination, Saira Afzal Tarar on Tuesday said that the Youth Business Loan Scheme will bring a positive change in the life of country’s youths. Talking to APP, the minister said that efforts are being made to make youth self-sufficient and the present government of Pakistan Muslim League (N) is pursuing the policy to bring prosperity in their life. She said that Prime Minister’s Youth Loan Programme would help overcome unemployment in the country. She added the programme would focus on specially rural areas as a major part of population was facing economic and unemployment problems. She said Rs 100 billion has been allocated for this programme during the current financial year and in the first phase one hundred thousand unemployed youth would be given loans through ballot. The minister said that there would be complete transparency in the award of loans and an effective monitoring mechanism will be developed to keep a check on loan award process so that merit was ensured. She said the concerned authorities of the National Bank of Pakistan and the First Women Bank Limited would decide the eligibility of the applicants in a transparent manner. She said contrary to bank interests on loans which stood around 25 percent, they would have to pay only 8 per cent per annum with one year as grace period while 7 per cent would be borne by the government. Expressing her optimism for bright future of the youths, the minister said under the Loans programme, the beneficiaries would be able to employ at least five other persons in their business.—APP

Malik dissatisfied with NHA performance

Law, order improvement is big govt achievement: Governor P E S H A W A R — K h y b e r ties in FATA is quite a huge Pakhtunkhwa Governor Engineer Shaukatullah has said that the visible change especially in maintenance of law and order in FATA and the respective settled districts of the province is a big achievement of the government institutions and now serious efforts are afoot to ensure rapid rehabilitation and accelerated development. Talking to a visiting group of participants of 14th Senior Management course, currently in progress at Karachi based National Institute of Management who called on him at Governor’s House here on Tuesday, the Governor further pointed out that indeed rehabilitation of damaged infrastructure facili-

PTI fails to bring change I SLAMABAD —Central Spokesman of Awami National Party’s (ANP) Zahid Khan on Tuesday criticized the role of Pakistan Tehrik-e-Insaf (PTI) saying that the PTI government had totally failed to bring change in the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa. Talking to reporters outside the Parliament House here, the ANP Senator said that despite promises of bringing change the provincial government had failed badly to materialize its promises made with the masses in its election campaign. He blamed that the sit-in staged by the PTI and its allies in the KPK had affected around 500,000 transporters, adding that Imran Khan’s party was pushing the country towards a state of anarchy and that the policies of his provincial government were anti-Pakhtun. He said that despite being in power for six months, the PTI had failed to take the necessary steps for holding local government elections in KPK adding that the nationalists in Balochistan were more democratic and had ensured the holding of a local government elections in that province. Senator also alleged that the KPK government had failed to establish peace and eliminate corruption from the province. Awami National Party Balochistan office bearers Monday demanded the government to ensure safe release of the party’s former Balochistan president Arbab Abdul Zahir Kasi. Talking to APP here, ANP Balochistan senior leaders Malik Usman Achakzai and Abdul Rashid Nasir said non-recovery of Abdul Zahir Kasi was causing restlessness among the party workers and citizens. They urged the government for ensuring safe release of Nawab Abdul Zahir Kasi, besides launching a crack down against the gangs involved in kidnapping for ransom and other incidents of crime. Unidentified armed men had kidnapped on gunpoint the former ANP Balochistan president Arbab Abdul Zahir Kasi on October 23 last while he was passing through Patel Road in the provincial in his private car.—APP

YLS to help increase GDP P ESHAWAR —Pakistan Muslim League (N) President of Women Wing Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and Member National Assembly (MNA) Tahira Bukhari Tuesday said Prime Minister’s Youth Loan Scheme (YLS) is a gift for females of backward areas of the country. During her visit to various branches of National Bank of Pakistan in Swat along with MPA KP Assembly Zille Huma, she said females of the areas should have to take this opportunity to earn a respectable livelihood for themselves and families. She remarked the scheme would help eradicate unemployment from the country besides enabling the youth to start their own business instead of seeking jobs in public, private sectors. She gave special directions to bank managers to make the form distribution system simple and trouble free so that poor deserving people may grab this opportunity without any hurdle. Women of various segment of society have deeply appreciated the bold move of government for allocating 50% loan to women and said the move will help women gain financial empowerment in a male dominated society. Financial experts are unanimous that the current loan scheme will address the joblessness issue, especially for the youth. It will also help increase GDP, besides holding back the increase in inflation and rising price of US $. “Both educated and uneducated women are showing deep interest in the scheme and many of them have already obtained forms, from the designated branches of the banks and many of them have downloaded from website. Shahbana, who has just completed her masters, said “It is first kind of a programme for the youth, in which 50% quota is for women which manifests how much government is sincere in empowering them”.—APP

Responding to various points, the Governor said, they are actively engaged to bring socio-economic change in life pattern of the people of FATA and solid steps are afoot to make this possible. In this connection, he particularly mentioned launching of Momand Marble City Project situated at a short distance from Peshawar and said, “it will prove a huge enterprise to exploit mineral wealth of FATA, the marble reserves in particular in the best interest of the respective people”. “We have the plan to establish similar industries based economic zones in rest of FATA and the second one is expected to be taken in hand

Rs300m for rehabilitation of Chitral communication network okayed STAFF REPORTER

nism and putting some safety walls so that the billion of minerals should not be exploited by unauthorized and the wastage of precious wealth is blocked for good. He also underlined the need of scientific exploration of mineral wealth Chitral and utilizing its income for welfare of the locals. He was chairing review meeting on rehabilitation of flood affected infrastructure in Chitral at CM Secretariat Peshawar. The meeting besides administrative Secretaries of all the concerned departments and district administration authorities was

attended by MNA from Chitral Iftikharuddin, MPAs Ghulam Muhammad, Fozia Bibi, Economic Advisor to CM Rafaqatullah Baber, local elite Rehmat Ghazi, Sajjad Ahmad Khan, Abdul Latif and others.The Chief Minister said that the developmental and public welfare initiatives would be in the present fiscal space of the province. However he said that rationality would prevail and there would be no exaggeration in any sector. He said financial discipline would be maintained and every penny would be spent on public welfare.

at Darra Adamkhel in near future, the Governor said. Referring to another point, he further pointed out that keeping in view the available resource in hand, it indeed, seems to be big challenge to materialize the desired goals and to make it possible, adding they are trying their best to manage the task in a best possible way. Meanwhile, the Additional Chief Secretary, FATA Arab Mohammad Arif while briefing the delegates about salient features of the development plans pointed out that out of more than Rs. 18 billions allocated for FATA during the current financial year, almost Rs.14 billion are meant for Annual Develop- SARGODHA: A heavily loaded passenger vehicle is parked ment Programme.—APP to attract some more passengers on Salanwali Road.

Petrol pump owners observe strike

ister Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Pervez Khattak okayed Rs.300 million for the reconstructions and rehabilitation of communication network in Chitral district. Off this Rs.150M will go to roads and bridges and 150 million rupees will be released to restore irrigation channels and construction of spurs and protection walls. He revealed that his government was going to announce a new lease policy soon with a regulatory mecha-

Pak-China relationship has glorious past, bright future ISLAMABAD—PakistanChina friendship has a glorious past as well as a bright future and would continue to act as a stabilizing force for the entire region, said Ambassador Masood Khalid here earlier Tuesday. In his his keynote speech at the prestigious Fudan University in Shanghai on ‘Pakistan’s Foreign Policy with Special Reference to China’, Ambassador Khalid said Pakistan’s relationship with China commanded a unique place in Pakistan’s foreign policy and strategic calculus, says a message received here from Shanghai. Tracing the historic evolution of Pakistan’s foreign policy, the Ambassador said Pakistan had faced enormous challenges since its birth in 1947. “It was a brand new country that had to develop its economy, industry and government structures from scratch,” Ambassador Khalid noted.

At the same time, Pakistan was a small country in a volatile region and faced with a hostile neighbour many times bigger in its size in economic and military muscle. This forced Pakistan to concentrate its energies and financial resources into safeguarding its independence and territorial integrity. As a result, the quest for security became an important driver of Pakistan’s foreign policy and has continued to shape the country’s response to key foreign policy challenges throughout its history. Ambassador Khalid said another focus of Pakistan’s foreign policy is on complementing the country’s economic and development agenda, adding that Pakistan is a developing country strategically situated on the intersection of South, West and Central Asia. Pakistan, he said was blessed with a large number of young population and rich natural resources.—APP

NA for varsities in Hyderabad, Sahiwal I SLAMABAD —The National in universities matching to Assembly on Tuesday unanimously adopted two resolutions urging the government to set up universities in Hyderabad and Sahiwal to facilitate the students of the adjacent areas. The resolutions were moved by Syed Waseem Hussain and Rai Hassan Nawaz Khan, the government did not oppose. Speaking on the occasion Minister of State for Ministry of Education, Training and Standards in Higher Education Eng. Muhammad Baligh-ur-Rehman said the government wants to increase the ratio of studying

the ratio of at least Turkey and Maldives. More and more universities must be established in the country to improve literacy ratio. Meanwhile the House rejected the resolution moved by Chaudhry Hamid Hameed. Deputy Speaker Murtaza Javed Abbasi referred the Bill titled to amend the Code of Criminal Procedure 1898 (The Code of Criminal Procedure (Amendment) Bill 2013 to NA standing committee for law and justice. The bill was moved by Muhammad Ayaz Soomro.—APP

7.3m KP children out of schools

S ARGODHA —Petrol pump P ESHAWA R —Child Rights 7.3 million children are not in

owners on Tuesday observed a strike across the district and held a demonstration for increase in commission on sales. During the demonstration, office-bearers of the Petrol Pumps Association and their salesmen raised slogans for their demand. Meanwhile, motorists faced trouble after suspension of the petrol supply while most taxis and rickshaws remained off the road as the CNG stations were also closed. Few rickshaws plying the roads demanded high fares and overcharged passengers. Even roadside shops selling petrol illegally overcharged buyers and sold petrol at Rs 150-200 a litre. 71 shopkeepers fined on profiteering: Price controlling magistrates during checking the prices of edible items have imposed fine of Rs 56,400 on 71 profiteers. The magistrates imposed fine of Rs 9,500 on 13 profiteers in tehsil city, Rs 12,500 on 12 shopkeepers in tehsil Saddar, Rs 18,800 on 24 shopkeepers in Tandlianwala, Rs 5,500 on 11 shopkeepers in Jaranwala, Rs 7,600 on nine profiteers in Sammundri and Rs 2,500 fine was imposed on two shopkeepers in Chak Jhumra. Meanwhile, a petrol pump in tehsil city was fined of Rs 5,000 on overcharging and QUETTA: A view of damage caused by a blast in a house due to gas leakage in Ghousabad area. less measurement.

Q UETTA —Expressing dissatisfaction PESHAWAR—The Chief Min-

over the performance of National Highway Authority (NHA), Balochistan Chief Minister Dr Abdul Malik Baloch the law and order situation in the province was not that much grave which had forced the NHA to stop releasing funds for incomplete projects. According to a press release, the Chief Minister said, “NHA would have to change its attitude as it has always subjected Balochistan to injustice.” He expressed these views while talking to a delegation of Frontier Works Organizations (FWO) led by its Director General, Major General Engineer Muhammad Afzal. NHA officials were also present in the meeting. The delegation informed Chief Minister Balochistan about the pace of construction work of national highways in the province. The Chief Minister said the projects of highways that were to be completed six years back were still incomplete due to lukewarm response of NHA. Dr Abdul Malik Baloch said, “If four important highway projects are completed, a huge change can be witnessed in the infrastructure of the province.” He said that he had met Prime Minister Mian Muhammad Nawaz Sharif and Finance Minister Ishaq Dar who had assured early provision of funds. He said that delay in completion of work on national highways was causing negative impacts on economy of the province as timely completion of Quetta-Chaman, Hoshab-Nag, Loralai-Rakhni and Zhob-Danasar projects were inevitable for strengthening of provincial economy. The Chief Minister directed for early completion of Quetta-Chaman Highway as funds for this highway were allocated.—APP

task and the government is doing its best to overcome it. Additional Chief Secretary FATA, Arbab Mohammad Arif briefed the delegates about salient features of the prevailing situation and the pace of progress on development programmes in FATA. Principal Secretary to Governor Dr. Mohammad Fakhr-e-Alam was also present while the participants of the course comprising senior officials of the autonomous bodies of both the federal and provincial governments were accompanied by Director General of the Institute, Capt: ® Syed Waqar Hussain.

Movement Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Tuesday stressed upon the authorities concern to remove illiteracy and provide free and compulsory education to all children out of schools with a minimum possible period. Addressing a press conference here at press club Aizazudding coordination Child Rights Movement (CRM), Imran Takkar from SPARK and Ishtiaq from Khushal Welfare said that unfortunately 55 million Pakistanis of age 10 and over cannot read and write. They said that in 25 million out of school children over

primary school in Pakistan. The speakers on the occasion said that the article 25 (A) of 18th amendment in the constitution of Pakistan reinforces the government responsibility to ensure the provision of education as basic right of all. They suggested enforcement of article 25 (A) in letter and spirit, increase in education budget, study of national and international dimensions, enrolment motivational drive, expanding access to education to all, allocation of special free education funds and making a monitoring mechanism to ensure quality education.—APP

Rain, thunderstorm expected in twin cities I SLAMABAD —Mainly cold Faisalabad divisions, during and dry weather is expected in most parts of the country, however, isolated rain and thunderstorm is likely in Rawalpindi and Islamabad on Wednesday. Partly cloudy weather with chances of light rain (with light snowfall over the hills) is expected at isolated places of Malakand, Hazara divisions and Gilgit-Baltistan. Foggy conditions would prevail at scattered places over upper Punjab including Lahore, Gujranwala and

morning hours. According to Met office,a

shallow westerly wave is still prevailing over northern parts of the country and likely to persist during next 24 to 36 hours.—APP

Hagel fuels anti-drone sentiments


What to do about Syria


N a complicated relationship and during times of crisis, high level visits, usually, lead to improvement in the situation and that is why there were expectations that irritants between Pakistan and the United States would lessen, if not removed, as a result of day-long visit of Defence Secretary Chuck Hagel. However, at the end of the day, according to all estimations, the visit has estranged the relationship further mainly because of unfriendly attitude of the guest, who went to the extent of hurling threats of choking financial aid to Pakistan at a time when the country is facing the crunch. American Embassy in Pakistan has, for the last several years, launched an aggressive PR exercise to improve image of the United States in Pakistan through a well coordinated programme encompassing initiatives to promote people-to-people contacts, exchange programmes and a media campaign but the progress so made is unfortunately undermined by uncanny moves by Washington and that too at highly inopportune time. Sentiments in Pakistan in general and frontline KP Province in particular are running high due to drone strikes that have recently been extended to the settled areas and have spoiled the prospects of peace talks with Taliban that both PML-N and PTI had committed during their election campaigns. As the United States was unwilling to listen to the verbal protests or feel sorry for the injured sentiments of people of Pakistan, the PTI has taken the protest to the next stage by blocking NATO supply lines through the Province. An official handout issued after meeting of Hagel with Pakistani leadership did claim that the Pakistan side raised the issue of drone attacks but ironically not only the other side did not budge an inch from the stated arrogant position but instead warned that the country could lose billions out of Coalition Support Fund if the issue of suspension of supplies was not resolved instantly. The ultimatum has not gone well with the people of Pakistan as it has added fuel to the fire and its implications would not be good for both sides. This sheer arms-twisting is counter-productive for the cause of peace in the region so proudly espoused by Obama administration. As for threats to stop payments from CSF, we would point out that this is no charity and Pakistan Government may seriously consider the policy of ‘no expenditure, no reimbursement’ vis-a-vis war on terror.

Another former President in the dock W

HILE the government is all set to frame charges against former President Pervez Musharraf, it has emerged that the Accountability Court in Islamabad has summoned another former President Asif Ali Zardari in a reference filed by National Accountability Bureau. Thus the two former Heads of State are now in dock, will be running from pillar to post to defend themselves and their cases will get media attention. The emerging scenario has two aspects: As a matter of principle whosoever commits wrong should be tried as that would have a deterrent effect and secondly it is necessary that it should not give the impression of political victimisation. These aspects cannot be ignored because in the past former rulers were tried for a long period of time on different charges but ultimately either the charges could not be proved or the cases were put under the carpet, for lack of evidence. Also due to these trials with excessive media attention, the image of the country suffers abroad. We need to learn from the countries that have moved fast in economic development as they left behind the retrogressive practices and paid attention to achieve a bright future for their people. Cases against former President Asif Ali Zardari could not be proved in the past, they lingered on, created political animosity and the same can be expected now as according to indications there would be no witnesses. These cases were closed after his election as President and NAB should have been extra careful in reopening them after collecting necessary proofs, as there would be obvious apprehensions of raising political temperature and heart burning. At a time when the country is in the midst of dealing with crisis after crisis, there is dire need for political stability which plays an important role in keeping society integrated and in maintaining legitimacy within the state. Therefore, we would emphasise that the country needs stability in the political system at this critical juncture and anything that could hurt the system should be avoided.

Gas starved Punjab industries I

NDUSTRIES in Punjab faced worst kind of discrimination during the last five years as far as supply of gas and electricity is concerned and it was legitimately expected that their plight would improve but alas! These expectations proved untrue. Throughout summer, industries in Faisalabad had been protesting against non-provision of electricity and with the advent of winter they would not get even gas for at least three months. What is being done in Pakistan in the name of gas management is worst example of non-serious policy formulation and haphazard growth. For almost two decades, the successive governments had been extending lucrative incentives to encourage transport to shift on CNG but now it has suddenly transpired to the policy-makers that the country cannot afford to waste the precious resource of gas on transport. How could you manage oil supplies when the demand would be at the peak and your foreign exchange reserves are depleting fast? True, the agreement provides nonsupply of gas to the industry for three months of winter when there is pressure on demand but you are unable to ensure uninterrupted power supply as well. Under these circumstances, what will happen to the plans of the Government to revive the economy, go for job generation, increase production and export more. Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif represents aspirations of the people by telling his foreign interlocutors that Pakistan needs trade and not aid but the question arises how we would produce the surplus for exports without supply of gas and electricity to the industry. The case of Punjab is particularly worrisome as it still faces discrimination if seen in the backdrop of energy situation elsewhere in the country especially in Sindh and KP. This sense of deprivation and discrimination does not augur well for harmony and would serve as disincentive for the ‘big brother’ to make sacrifices for small ones in other areas.

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Complement regional prosperity Minister Ishaq Dar said on 13th that Tehran was backout of the project by not Asif Haroon Raja ing providing required funds. IsEmail: sue of pricing was raised, while some said it was technically and financially not URING the Reza Shah feasible. Asking for funds was in fact Pahlavi era in Iran from a stalling tactic. Finding that Paki1953 to March 1979, Iran- stan was hemming and hawing bePakistan relations were extraordi- cause of the US and Saudi pressure, narily warm. Iran supported Kash- Iran too lost interest and expressed mir cause, extended military support its inability to extend promised loan during 1965 Indo-Pak war and full on account of its weak financial podiplomatic support in the 1971 war sition. Iran would not have regretted with India. Iran helped in quashing had Pakistan’s keenness on IP project 1973 insurgency in Balochistan. not waned. The project was thus conAfter Shah’s departure, certain signed to the back burner. On the advice of USA, Pakistan events like Islamic revolution in Iran, Jihad against Soviets in Af- started to actively pursue long-term ghanistan, Pakistan’s friendly ties TAPI project, the commissioning of with the US, Saudi Arabia, and Af- which was entirely dependent upon ghan Taliban created hiccups in Iran- return of peaceful conditions in AfPakistan bilateral relations owing to ghanistan. The ‘New Silk Route’ is differing perceptions. After a long designed to facilitate India to consoliperiod of unease, bilateral relations date its presence in Afghanistan and have returned to normalcy. President to further extend its influence in CenHassan Rouhani soon after taking tral Asia by using transit routes of over stated that he will strive to en- Pakistan. Making a rational assesshance relations with neighbouring ment about the obtaining volatile seStates, particularly Pakistan. Issue curity situation in Afghanistan, posof gas pipeline project, which is also sibility of peace returning in the wartermed as harbinger of peace needs torn country even after the departure of ISAF in December 2014 is slim. to be delved upon. When Pakistan expressed its in- Peace can return only if a political ability to complete its portion of the settlement is arrived at with cooperaproject due to acute financial crunch, tion of Taliban and not otherwise. Pakistan faces huge deficit of Iran offered to extend loan for the purpose. But by that time PML-N over 2.5 billion cubic feet per day as government took over the reins of its production stands at 4.2 billion cuthe country and in Iran Hassan bic feet. Energy starvation has led to Rouhani replaced Ahmadinejad. innumerable problems for Pakistan. Scared by US sanctions about which Since 2008, the people are suffering Hillary Clinton had given a clear the pains of power and gas outages hint, Pakistan started dilly dallying and industries are closing down and and giving contradictory statements. businessmen are shifting to other While Minister Asif Khawaja stated countries. Provision of Rs 500 bilon 11 November 2013 that comple- lion to pay off circular debt by the tion of the gas pipeline project was incoming government helped in proa contractual obligation, Finance viding temporary relief to the people


but the one-time measure was a drop in the ocean and it didn’t cure the disease. Pakistan needs a quick- time and not a long-term remedy to overcome its energy crisis. Pakistan needs uninterrupted oil and gas supplies to meet domestic needs and to keep the economic engines running. Rather than opting for dicey TAPI project, Pakistan should have availed the golden opportunity presented by next door Iran with both hands since it was secure and quicker to meet the immediate requirements of energy shortfalls. Once the envisioned IP project is commissioned, the pipeline will inject 750 mm cfd gas into Pakistan system. Pakistan could have considered abandoning this project had the US offered civil nuclear deal similar to the one granted to India, or offered viable energy alternatives. Commissioning of IP project at a time when Iran was isolated and under duress and urgently needed an outlet to sell its gas would have helped in further cementing Pakistan’s brotherly ties with Iran. Forging special ties with Iran, which is the vital backyard of Pakistan, is otherwise of high significance for Pakistan when seen in backdrop of soured relations with India and Afghanistan and dangerous designs of duo to encircle and isolate Pakistan. Our leaders couldn’t foresee the fast changing scenario in aftermath of regime change in Iran and Washington’s efforts to woo new leadership which was more amenable to friendly gestures made by west. In wake of Iran’s interim nuclear agreement with P5+1 in Geneva on Nov 24, 2013, Pakistan and Iran have begun to fast track their discussions on ignored project. Pakistan is likely to renegotiate gas prices and completion date and Iran seems amenable to both. Iran-Paki-

stan connectivity is a geo-strategic compulsion for both and hence their destinies are intertwined. IP project has the potential to further cement Iran-Pakistan relations. Pakistan should make efforts to extend the project to India as well as to China to accrue maximum financial benefits from it through transit fee. Grant of land access to India, enabling it to transport goods to Afghanistan and Central Asia should be linked with Iran-Pakistan-India gas pipeline project. These inter-dependent linkages together with envisaged KashgarGawadar road/rail corridor will keep Pakistan within the regional loop and will restrain India from applying Chankyan tactics to harm Pakistan’s interests. Chahbahar Port should not cause Pakistan undue anxiety. Gawadar Port should be complementing rather than vying to substitute Chahbahar. Likewise, Pakistan’s influence in eastern and southern Afghanistan should complement Iran’s influence in western Afghanistan and over Northern Alliance and Hazara community. Both should conjointly work to clear up the logjam in Afghanistan and play a constructive role in establishing a broad based government in Kabul before the departure of ISAF. In fact emergence of triangular relationship between Afghanistan-Pakistan-Iran backed by USA, China and Russia will bring lasting stability in the region. Collectivization, rather than opting for solo flight as in the case of India, will help in eradicating terrorism; overcoming poverty, bringing prosperity and promoting regional harmony. —The writer, a retired Brig, is defence analyst and author of several books.

Kashmir needs comprehensive solution Iqbal Khan


LECTIONS in India are tak ing their toll on Pak-India re lations. Remarks about Kashmir attributed to Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif during his recent visit to AJK capital triggered a diatribe from Indian side. Though the remarks were promptly disowned by the PMO, the reaction continues. This indeed indicates the sensitivity of the Kashmir dispute. In India elections are contested on the basis of India’s Pakistan policy; this generally degenerates into a competition in jingoism between the political parties and individuals. Even Prime Minister of India did not wait for the authentic copy of remakes by his Pakistani counterpart and fired to salvo within hours; by doing so he stooped to the level of Indian fanatics who lose no opportunity of Pakistan-bashing and keep making mountains out of the mole-hills. The latest remarks of Shiv Sena President Uddhav Thackeray to teach lesson to Pakistan through a 4th war and that such an eventuality would wipe out Pakistan from the world map and help capture Azad Kashmir are reflective of the typical Indian electoral mindset. Venomous remarks of young Thackeray are understandable as he has inherited anti-Pakistan sentiments from his father; but knee jerk reactions from Manmohan Singh should serve as an eye-opener for those who never get tired of advocating the cause of friendship with India, irrespective the cost. Emphasizing the need for Pakistan and India to work together towards resolving outstanding issues, the United States has said the two South Asian

nations should discuss Kashmir dispute directly. The State Department also urged Islamabad and New Delhi to keep working for improvement in their bilateral relations. “We’ve been very clear that this is an issue we think needs to be discussed directly between Pakistan and India,” Deputy Spokesperson at the State Department Marie Harf said during a recent daily briefing, when asked about recent statements on the disputed Jammu and Kashmir region. When asked about Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif’s supposed remarks that the Kashmir dispute could trigger a fourth war between India and Pakistan, the Spokesperson replied: “I didn’t actually see those comments, so I don’t want to respond to comments I haven’t seen.” Advisor to the Prime Minister on National Security and Foreign Affairs Sartaj Aziz has pointed out that presence of Indian forces on Siachen Glacier is harmful to the environment. Pakistan is facing a water shortage and Indian forces are damaging the virgin snow of Siachen on daily basis‚ which is one of the largest sources of Pakistani waters. Items of daily use disposed off by thousands of Indian soldiers are threatening the very existence of the glacier. Presence of Indian forces on Siachen is, indeed, a big issue and should be resolved as soon as possible. According to environmentalists‚ glacial retreat on Himalayas and Karakorum ranges has accelerated during the recent years because of human presence on the glaciers. Indian and Pakistani troops are face-to-face at Siachen for years in freezing temperature, since Indian troops occupied the major portion of Siachen in 1984. Before this act of Indian aggression, the glacier was a demilitarized zone, scarcely visited by human beings. Pakistan had to move its troops to the glacier as a

necessity to halt further advancement of Indian troops. Ever since Pakistan has pursued restoration of status quo ante. Demilitarization of Siachen would mitigate the water scarcity of both the countries. United Nations Climate Change Conference held in Poland from November 11-22 has concluded that: “We’re being impacted by climate change right now. We have to fight sea level rise, we are looking at increases in the frequency and severity of storm events, so it’s about survival...this is the most important decade facing mankind... What we do in the next seven years will affect generations to come.” Germanwatch presented its ninth annual Global Climate Risk Index at the onset of the Climate Summit in Warsaw. “Haiti led the list of the three countries most affected by weather related catastrophes in 2012. The others were the Philippines and Pakistan. This Risk Index ranks countries according to relative and absolute number of human victims, and relative and absolute economic damage. The report also published a Climate Risk Index for 1993-2010, with Pakistan ranked as the 12th most affected country by climate-related events over the last two decades. The report also noted that Pakistan has been among the three most affected countries for three consecutive years. Pakistan, which had already suffered severe flooding in 2010 and 2011, was struck again by a rough monsoon season, in 2012 killing over 650 people. According to the report’s assessment, extreme weather calamities caused Pakistan losses worth 0.7% of country’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP) over 20 years. United Nations’ Secretary General (UNSG) Mr Ban Ki-moon, addressed the “Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change”(IPCC) on September 27, 2013, as world’s top climate sci-

entists formally embraced an upper limit on greenhouse gases for the first time; thus establishing, at least, a glass ceiling beyond which humanity must stop injecting these gases into the atmosphere or face irreversible climatic changes. Ban Ki-moon, spoke to delegates at the meeting, via video link; he declared his intent to call a meeting of heads of state to push forward a climate change treaty. Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif’s recent visit to Muzaffarabad served as an opportunity not only to highlight what should be the fundamental position of Pakistan on the core issue of Jammu and Kashmir but his meetings and utterances were also reassuring for Kashmiris who have been waging a relentless struggle to realize their right of self-determination. There have been wavering approaches by the successive Pakistani governments— varying from apologetic to jingoistic. There were times when Pakistan insisted that there should be progress in tandem on all issues forming various sectors of composite dialogue, including Kashmir; but then there was talk of granting MFN status to India and entering into more trade without any progress on the issue of Kashmir. These contradictory approaches have caused harm to Kashmir cause. Hopefully the new government would continue to pursue for settlement of Kashmir dispute at all forums. Kashmir needs a comprehensive solution. Such solution would lay to reset all smaller conflicts which are actually subsets of the overall Kashmir dispute—like water and Siachen. However, a beginning could be made by pursing a bilateral agreement on demilitarization of Siachen Glacier. —The writer is Consultant Policy and Strategic Response at IPRI.

STATEMENT by a United Nations official that war crimes in Syria can be attributed to “the highest level of government, including the head of state,” has renewed the debate over whether, when and how the United States should intervene in crises abroad. Some critics of the Obama administration’s cautious Syria policy argue for dramatically increasing aid to rebels seeking the overthrow of President Bashar Assad. Others would go further, creating a no-fly zone similar to the one established in Libya before the overthrow of Moammar Kadafi that would be enforced by an aggressive air campaign. Still others — including some who oppose military intervention — fault the administration for “legitimising” Assad by negotiating with him on dismantling his chemical weapons program and pursuing a peace conference at which his government would be represented. But as grievous as the humanitarian situation in Syria is, a unilateral military campaign by the US — even if it were supported by Congress, which is unlikely — could prolong the war, exacerbate the suffering of the Syrian people and make it even harder to achieve the political solution that remains the best hope for ending the violence. That the Assad regime is willing to kill innocents and violate international norms is hardly a surprise at this point, not after the deaths of hundreds of civilians in a chemical weapons attack outside Damascus last summer. Although UN investigators didn’t explicitly accuse the regime of carrying out the attacks, its findings strongly supported that explanation. This month, Navi Pillay, the UN high commissioner for human rights, suggested that investigators had established a link between the regime and other crimes against humanity. Foreign fighters who support Assad, including members of the Lebanese militia Hezbollah, also have been accused of atrocities. But not all of the atrocities are being committed by the regime. Some of the fighters seeking to overthrow Assad have also been accused of atrocities. In fact, as in many a civil war, combatants on all sides are willing to harm innocents to achieve their objectives. The Syrian civil war would seem an obvious candidate for humanitarian military intervention under the “responsibility to protect” doctrine proclaimed at a UN summit in 2005 and later ratified by the Security Council. That policy calls on individual nations to prevent war crimes within their borders, but it also says the Security Council can authorize collective action “should peaceful means be inadequate and national authorities are manifestly failing to protect their populations from genocide, war crimes, ethnic cleansing and crimes against humanity.” Those who advocate a more assertive US policy argue that the most humane option is to ratchet up the pressure on Assad. The sooner he falls, the argument goes, the sooner the violence will end and refugees will be able to return home. But that calculation is naive. An attempt by the US and its allies to overthrow Assad by force would be bloody and protracted and could have disastrous side effects, including the empowerment of Islamist extremists and a rupture in negotiations with Iran, an Assad ally, on its nuclear program. The US policy of providing limited aid to the rebels while pressing for negotiations is still the least bad of all of the available options. The US should not rule out humanitarian intervention to protect people around the world facing genocide and crimes against humanity. But it should act only with the broadest possible international support and participation, and only after other means are exhausted. Planners should set narrowly tailored, achievable aims. They should have an exit strategy. The situation in Syria is heartbreaking. A civil war that began with the repression of peaceful demonstrators inspired by the Arab Spring has resulted in more than 100,000 deaths, including tens of thousands of civilians, and has created 2 million refugees. That the UN has been unable to contain the carnage makes a mockery of the notion of “responsibility to protect.” As Pillay observed: “The lack of consensus on Syria and the resulting inaction has been disastrous, and civilians on all sides have paid the price.” But in the absence of such a consensus, this country can do only so much. — Los Angeles Times Never do things by halves. — Proverb

KP’s Right to Information Act M Shafiq Anjum Email:


EMARKABLE approval of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Right to Information Act, 2013 on November 1, 2013 by Provincial Assembly of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KP) is a vital step to guarantee citizen’s right to information and ensure transparency in the light of Article 19-A of the Constitution of Islamic Republic of Pakistan. RTI Act 2013 will provide an opportunity to people of KP to strengthen democratic process by facilitating their participation in public affairs and making the government more accountable. RTI is regarded as oxygen for democracy. It is imperative for the transparency and smooth running of a democratic system, good governance; reduction in corruption and to enhance accountability in any country of the world. Nine guiding principles on freedom of information legislation presented by Article-19, a UK-based human rights organization, are widely recognized as world’s best practices. It includes maximum disclosure of information, obligation to publish key information by public bodies, promotion of open government, short list of exceptions, rapid and fair pro-

cesses to facilitate access requests, cost effective procedure, open meetings of public bodies, laws which are inconsistent with the principle of maximum disclosure should be amended or repealed and individuals who release information on wrongdoing (whistleblowers) must be protected under the law. Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Right to Information Act, 2013 is comparatively well composed, based on above mentioned nine best practices and can be compared with universally recognized strong RTI laws. It is hoped that proper implementation of RTI laws in KP would help ordinary citizens to access relevant public information in order to make informed choices in their dealings with public bodies. Since all operations and spending of public bodies will be exposed to public scrutiny, there will be lesser chances of corruption and professional lethargy. The law entails proper record management, which will surely enhance the efficiency of public bodies, besides improving the state of accountability. Among the key features of the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Right to Information Act, 2013, one significant aspect is establishment of an independent Information Commission within a period of 120 days after the enactment of this Act. In other words, KP government has to establish Informa-

tion Commission by February 28, 2014. Information Commission will enjoy operational and administrative autonomy. As a first step, on December 6, 2013, the government appointed Sahibzada Muhammad Khalid, a grade 22 official as the Chief Information Commissioner for three years. The government also announced a search committee, which will decide two other Commissioners. One of them will be an advocate of High Court who is qualified to be a Judge of High Court and the other one will be a person from civil society having experience of not less than 15 years in the field of mass communication, academic or right to information. Establishment of Information Commission on RTI is a popular trend in the world. As an independent and exclusive body on RTI, Information Commission can bring an open and fair RTI regime in KP. Even Pakistan’s neighbouring countries like India, Bangladesh and Nepal have successfully been utilizing the institution of Information Commission for transparency and accountability. It is hoped that KP government will not wait any more and take necessary steps towards the completion of the Information Commission, recruitment of its staff and preparation of rules and regulations. The

inclusion of Secretariats of Chief Minister, Governor, Provincial Assembly of KP and subordinate judiciary in the definition of public bodies is a positive characteristic and is a welcome step. However, non-inclusion of Peshawar High Court in this list is disappointing. Manmade laws cannot be final and there is always a room for improvement. So is the case of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Right to Information Act, 2013. However, despite some weaknesses, this Act can be regarded as a sunshine law in Pakistan which has set an example for others to follow. The next step for the KP government is to complete Information Commission within given timeframe and to launch awareness campaign for citizens to generate requisite demand for accessing public information. In addition, there is a need to work out the ways to discourage the ‘culture of secrecy’ and promote the ‘culture of openness’ in order to get real fruits of RTI laws. KP government along with CSOs should seriously focus on capacity building and education of the ordinary people, political activists/ workers, media persons and academia about how to use the right to information for public benefits. —The writer works at Consumer Rights Commission of Pakistan, Islamabad.

Media role in disaster management Salman Khalid


N the wake of sufferings caused by natural and man-made disas ters in the last couple of decades, a new realization is taking place in the contemporary world. There prevails a general comprehension to minimize the losses both to life and property to maximum possible level through effective communication utilizing technology based systems. Social scientists and experts are of the view that through a system of devoted international cooperation, the human sufferings caused by catastrophic impacts of disasters can be reduced significantly. This cooperation revolves around public information & education, improved warning systems, disaster preparedness and mitigation. These measures are aimed at ensuring improved public safety

and lower economic losses. If we observe closely, communication is the most important means for achieving all of the above stated objectives. Understanding the importance of media communications, various humanitarian organizations have also established communication departments responsible for strong internal and external communications and media relationing. As per the new communication techniques for disaster management, it is now believed that the success of humanitarian efforts depends largely on the organization’s understanding of and relations with the media. There are certain activities in hazard mitigation and post disaster activities which are directly dependent on the mass media. These activities are focused on creating public awareness about the risk and responses. Various advanced communication means can be used to give early warnings, evacuation

plans and help post disaster activities. Media can play a leadership role in changing the mindset of the society for making it more pro-active rather than reactive. It also has the responsibility to make the message more valuable and credible for the general public. Sensational and hyped news can give birth to another crisis in the form of chaos and fear causing more losses. In the last decade or so, there is a flux of electronic media channels in Pakistan along with other countries of the region. The electronic media has an outreach to the masses being present in every nook and corner of the country and it is playing comprehensive role in opinion making. One major contribution that the electronic media can make is establishment of early warning systems in far flung and disaster prone areas. Radio Channels can play a primary role as they have an outreach to most remote ar-

eas. The media contribution can lead towards the development of a more robust community which is more aware and educated about the disaster preparedness and mitigation. We can see the example of Japan where the nation has stood united against the destruction of earthquakes coming on regular basis. There are continuous awareness programmes, trainings and drills going on which are produced and telecasted by media throughout the country. The role of media is vital in the overall promotion of a better disaster management regime within a state. The role of print media cannot be neglected as it has been observed that receivers of the information have more trust on the written message than word of mouth. The information given in newspapers is perceived as reliable advice and people take it more seriously.

Views From Abroad

India’s Bali debacle Greg Rushford


FTER four days of intense round-the-clock negotiations, the 159 members of the WTO (World Trade Organisation) struck a deal last week that is expected to give the global economy a $1 trillion boost. But progress toward freer trade came at a price. Indian Commerce Minister Anand Sharma held up the deal to extract permission for Delhi to break current WTO rules that limit agricultural cash subsidies and food stockpiling. The real surprise was how India’s backsliding provoked an angry reaction even among its fellow developing countries. By overplaying its hand, Delhi damaged its reputation as champion of world’s poor. That may have important consequences for future WTO negotiations. First the unalloyed good news. The core of the deal, the Trade Facilitation Package in WTO parlance, aims at moving goods more efficiently across international borders, especially in the less-developed parts of Asia, Latin America and Africa. It should help streamline inefficient customs procedures, improve some of the world’s worst roads and otherwise foster efficiencies in clogged ports of entry. Mr. Sharma was willing to throw all of these benefits away to score political points at home. Sonia Gandhi’s Congress Party,

weakened by corruption scandals, is lagging in the polls ahead of next April’s general election. Mr. Sharma’s mission in Bali was to secure agricultural protectionism, a centrepiece of Congress’s appeal. The largesse is meant to be doled out to hundreds of millions of India’s poor voters –from subsistence farmers to urban slum residents. At a contentious Dec. 5 press conference, Mr. Sharma told reporters that he had come to Bali not “to make a deal,” but “to secure the interests of the poor, as well as food security.” India was no longer a “beggar nation,” he insisted, and called all criticisms of his position wrong or misinformed. That infuriated a journalist from Burkina Faso, one of the world’s poorest countries, who at the conference shouted to Mr. Sharma, “You don’t speak for us.” WTO members like Burkina Faso recognize they cannot afford to lavish subsidies on their poor farmers, Indian style. They did not want Bali to fail. India also lost the support of important players like China, Brazil, and even Russia. An upset Indonesian President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono leaked to the Jakarta Post that he planned to call Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, hoping to persuade India to be more reasonable. Indeed, the leading Indonesian newspaper hammered India all week, rightly reporting that Delhi had been “widely blamed” for the hardball tac-

tics leading to the negotiating impasse. Mr. Sharma offended many peers and undermined his claims to be negotiating in good faith by asserting that his demands were “nonnegotiable.” Diplomats privately called the Indian position “arrogant,” “condescending,” and “insulting.” Said one Latin American trade negotiator, “The WTO is supposed to be about freeing trade, not negotiating increased protectionism.” Another senior Asian diplomat reminded me that India’s unfortunate record of stockpiling grains contributed in 2008 to skyrocketing rice prices that caused food riots from Haiti to the Ivory Coast and Indonesia. “You can’t trust these people,” he said of Indian delegation. At the end of the day, Mr. Sharma’s insistence that India needed a permanent exemption from existing WTO rules limiting agricultural subsidies was supported only by the usual suspects when it comes to backward-looking economics: Zimbabwe, Venezuela, Cuba, South Africa, and Bolivia. Not that Mr. Sharma had reason to care. He was really speaking to Congress Party constituencies back home. Still, the threat to torpedo the entire negotiating package was considered credible enough that Mr. Sharma ended up getting most of what he had wanted. The “peace clause” in this deal allows India to continue its subsidies for four years, at which point the fight could start all over again. The politics of trade

are distorted in India by the country’s failure to take advantage of past openings. China and others have developed their manufacturing industries by exporting finished goods to North America and Europe. In the process they have created unskilled jobs for people moving off the land and into the cities. In India, by contrast, excessive regulation, taxation and corruption prevent companies from building factories. So the rural poor continue to demand handouts and protection from agricultural imports. Most other developing countries face a different political calculus. As their labour force moves into the cities, they are less concerned with protecting grain markets and more interested in using the WTO to open markets wider to their manufactured exports. That created what some are now calling a “South-South split.” While it’s not clear how this will affect the political landscape in future WTO negotiations, it was clearly evident in Bali. The backlash against the main obstructionist power in global trade talks could mean that the tide is finally turning away from a “rich vs. poor” mentality that has stymied the WTO’s Doha Round for the last 12 years. The writer publishes the Rushford Report, an online journal based in Washington, DC that specialises in the politics of international trade and development. — Courtesy: The Wall Street Journal

It needn’t be her..!


FRIEND of mine called me desperately about a month ago, “You’ve got to help me Bob!” he pleaded, “My wife has started becoming very cold to me. I suspect she is having an affair with her boss. He’s a very moneyed man, and I am sure he has won the affection of my partner!” With a heavy heart I spoke to the wife, “Bob,” she said look-

ing at me with tears in her eyes. “I don’t understand why he’s blaming me. For last few years of our married life, he comes home from his job, ignores my greeting, shakes off my hug, stretches himself on cot and gets up just before dinner, eats his food and goes to sleep. So I decided I would stop trying to hug or greet him when he comes home!” I laughed and thought of another story: A man feared his wife wasn’t hearing as well as she used to and he thought she might need a hearing aid. Not quite sure how to approach her, he called the family doctor to discuss the problem. The Doctor told him there is a simple informal test the husband could perform to give

the doctor a better idea about her hearing loss. Here’s what you do,” said the Doctor, “stand about 40 feet away from her, and in a normal conversational speaking tone see if she hears you. If not, go to 30 feet, then 20 feet, and so on until you get a response.” That evening, the wife is in the kitchen cooking dinner, and he was in the hall. He says to himself, “I’m about 40 feet away, let’s see what happens.” Then in a normal tone he asks, ‘Laila, what’s for dinner?” No response. So the husband moves to closer to the kitchen, about 30 feet from his wife and repeats, “Laila, what’s for dinner?” Still no

response Next he moves into the dining room where he is twenty feet away from his wife, and says, “Laila, what’s for dinner?” Again he gets no response so he walks up to the kitchen door just ten feet short from where his wife is standing and asks, “Laila what’s for dinner?” Again there is no response. So he walks right up behind her and asks, “Laila what’s for dinner?” Laila shouts back at him, “Sameer for the fifth time I am telling you, we are having fish for dinner!” How easy it is, isn’t it to feel the other has a problem when it could be you..! —Email:

Voice of the People Wasteful Pakistani Missions abroad ALI MUHAMMAD


ccording to a news report, the Pakistani embassies around the world are overstaffed by at least 50%. Scions of influential people get themselves appointed abroad just for the sake of fun and frolic of it. This puts a huge burden not only on our already depleted foreign exchange reserves but also the national exchequer built with poor people’s tax money. This foreign staff is not only incompetent but also creates great hurdles in the way of the suffering Pakistani expatriates they are supposed to serve. A cousin of mine living in the United States in a remote city visited the Pakistani Consulate in Los Angeles, a week ago to get his passport renewed. Upon his arrival there he was told that the issuance of the Machine Readable Passports had been suspended till further notice. He could get a temporary manual passport but that was useless for extension of his visa. This is how the Pakistanis are being in the foreign countries so that they may not be able to continue their stay there and remit foreign exchange home. In this whole affair Pakistan’s Missions seem to be playing the role of a villain by working against the interests of its own people working abroad. And foreign exchange reserves have always been Mr. Nawaz Sharif government’s Achilles heel as is clear from the record of his previous tenures. It will be in his best interest to take urgent steps to purge the Pakistani Missions abroad of the black sheep, cut down the superfluous manpower there and improve their efficiency immediately. —Muzaffargarh

Road accidents BUSHRA DILAWAR KHAN Accidents are quite common in Karachi. The drivers are so ignorant of traffic laws and so careless about it that they never like to look round while driving even on the main roads or while taking sudden turns. Many a time I have noticed them stopping in the middle of the road without looking back or sideways and without giving any signal. One day I was going to college with my friend, Zobia; we were near the college. We heard a collision between a bus and a truck. The engine and the body of the bus were completely damaged. The two drivers and six passenger on the bus were killed instantly. Several of the passengers including a large number of women and children were seriously injured. The medical aid was rushed from Abdul Sattar Edhi Welfare Center. The superintendent of the Police and other officials of the police department also visited the scene of the accident. The seriously injured were taken to the Civil Hospital Karachi. As traffic is increasing on our city roads day by day, it is high time for the authorities to make necessary arrangements to stop such accidents. —Karachi

Irresponsible cellular operators NAIMA AZHAR A man divorced his wife and then after some months, killed her. As per my findings, the cellular company is responsible of all this. The husband had some misunderstanding so he divorced her but it was not the end. Five to six month after the divorce, he still had an eye on her, he got duplicate SIM of her use, which was registered on name of that woman, from an ordinary shop and got calls and sms details from cellular network’s website. He was still suspicious in his mind so he killed her. Everyone of our area is astonished that how easy is to get the cellular privacy disclosed. Every layman can get the duplicate SIM of anyone from irresponsible shopkeepers. I strived for getting all information of this malicious policy of cellular companies in Pakistan. Cellular operators have provided duplicate SIM issuance facility to ordinary shopkeepers (even sanitary stores, general stores, easy load retailers). Cellular operators just need to enhance their revenue, having no any concern of customers’ privacy. One of the resource of a cellular company disclosed that hundreds of complaints are received against shopkeepers’ illegal duplicate SIM issuance. Every customer thinks PTA as a sleeping guard. Cellular operators claim that shopkeepers can issue duplicate SIMs to only original customers having original CNIC and If some shopkeeper is found culprit, he is fined; but as per my authenticated information, the cellular operators are not fined more than Rs. 300. Extraction and retrieving of the SIM calls and sms history from the respective websites give away to such malpractices which end up in family issues and criminal violence in families. Top managements of cellular industry are earning thousands from these shopkeepers for giving this fraud facility. —Via email

Technical education BUSHRA DILAWAR KHAN I want to draw attention to the Technical Education Department of Sindh. Science has made rapid progress. Each country looks after and develops its industries to the utmost. Technical education aims at training an individual in some particular branch of knowledge or trade. Technical education is the need of the present time because we live in the computer age. Political freedom

can not preserve without economic stability. Technical education has a great importance in itself, because its importance is not only in the life of an individual but also in the life of a nation. Computer and mechanics have entered into the soul of our social life and every nation is on its way to technology, computer age and industrialization. If our students are given technical and professional education, they would get employment in any industry. Some may be employed in mills, some in firms and some in other places. Therefore, the government should keenly realize that there are very few technical institutions and more technical institutions should be opened. —Karachi

F9: Is it a family park? M WAQAS & AQIB JAVED

be the “Asian Century”. The elected representatives of the people must shape the destiny and future of Asia so that the problems of world’s biggest continent can be resolved by the Asians themselves. The Conference would not only enhance the image of the country since Pakistan is playing a pivotal role in the most strategic region of Asia, but also on the pressing issues such as economy, energy and environment, the APA would seek to present a way-forward. —Islamabad

Abid Sher Ali on load-shedding RAJA GHAZANFAR ALI KHAN The other day, the Minister of State for Water & Power Malik Abid Ali Sher has told to the press reporters that the Electricity Load Shedding will be ended by the end of year 2017 i.e. just two months before the holding of new election 2018. In this regard, I think that Malik Abid Ali Sher is not at fault by issuing such baseless and fake statements for the purpose of re-fooling the people of this Islamic country of Pakistan. Everybody knows that this assurance is nothing but a superfluous attempt to get some political mileage. Abid Sher Ali should understand that he enjoyed a good reputation as a people friendly politician in the past and hence instead of issuing such baseless statements he should maintain his previous record, help reduce load-shedding and be honest in making statement. because it will tarnish his own reputation. He is advised in his own interest to always serve the people of this Islamic country of Pakistan sincerely and honestly and only through the road of principles, he can win a better future for himself . —Rawalpindi

Fatima Jinnah Park was constructed in the F-9 sector of Islamabad about 15 years ago and was particularly named as a Family Park. But it is not a family park anymore. We have been observing unethical and highly immoral activities going on there. Last weekend I, with my family, visited F-9 Park and was feeling very uncomfortable due to some of the shameful activities by young couples; so we returned in a very short period of time. What is even worse, is that there was no one to stop them. As far as the management of the park is concerned, it is not playing its role in maintaining an environment where parents feel safe bringing their children without a fear of them being exposed to any inappropriate activity. So my point is; this entire regretful situation in F.9 Park is disturbing its healthy environment. I would therefore, call upon the CDA to maintain some check to restore the family environment of F9 Park and revive its formal glory AQSA MUZAFFAR by eliminating the morally corrupt practices, so rampant there. Child Labour means to employ the —Islamabad young children below the age demarcated by the government. “The child is the father of man.” This famous line quoted by William Wordsworth HASHIM ABRO refers to the importance of the child for the development of society as well Indeed, one of the essential functions as for the all-round development of of a government is to save human life the human race. We should never igand protect human rights. But do the nore the fact that child is the purest present Federal and Provincial gov- form of God. His innocence brings ernments abide by this obligation? I us closer to the Almighty. Child laborers are exploited, exknow human rights are being trampled upon without the least hesi- posed to hazardous work conditions tation in my home Province. People and paid a pittance for their long are deprived of education, healthcare hours of work. They belong to the and safe drinking water. Is there any- unorganized labour force. Presently, one to take notice of it and ask our there are more than 250 million child rulers to do something for the poor labourers in our country. However, our government has laid down varipeople in this country? ous guidelines to eradicate child —Islamabad labour from the grass root level. No child below the age of 14 years shall be employed to work in any hazardous employment. Childhood and youth are to be protected against exploitation and against moral and maM ASADULLAH KHAN terial abandonment. The State shall The Senate of Pakistan has taken the endeavor to provide within a period initiative to host the 6th Plenary meet- of 10 years from the commencement ing of Asian Parliamentary Assem- of the Constitution free and compulbly from December 8 to 10, 2013 on sory education for all children until the theme of “Asian Century: Coop- they have completed age of 14 years. However, the main cause of child eration in Economy, Energy and Environment”. The 3 Es’ cooperation is labour is poverty; poor parents put very crucial for all the APA member their children to work in order to countries to boost their economies. supplement the family’s income. This The theme of the APA is very relevant compulsion forces the parents to forto Pakistan as the energy demands are get that every child has his right to growing with each passing day. Al- enjoy his childhood. In the end, I most all other Asian countries are would just only hope that our government would take necessary steps faced with similar problems. Keeping in view the challenges and free the children from the worand opportunities, a well thought out ries of labour and hard work. approach is required to be adopted for — Karachi socio-economic emancipation of the people living in the Asian region. The member states need to think globally ISCLAIMER and act locally so that concrete poliTHE articles, columns and cies could be formulated. Credit goes letters are published on these to both the Chairman Senate Syed pages in good faith. However, Nayyer Hussain Bokhari and Senator Mushahid Hussian Sayed, who is the contents of these writings the Chairman of the organizing Commay not necessarily match the mittee, to make this dream come true. views of the newspaper. It is very important movement in the history of Asia when the balance —Editor of power is shifting from the west to the east and it is now generally recognized that the 21st century would

Child labour

Of Government

Think globally, act locally


Putin vows to beef up Arctic military presence

Justin Bieber visits Philippine typhoon victims

MOSCOW—Expanding Russia’s military presence in the Arctic region is among the top priorities for the nation’s armed forces, President Vladimir Putin.Speaking at a meeting with the top military brass, Putin said that Russia is “intensifying the development of that promising region” and needs to have “every lever for the protection of its security and national interests there.” He emphasized the importance of the Soviet-era base at the New Siberian Islands, which the military started to overhaul this year. Russian officials have described the facility as key for protecting shipping routes that link Europe with the Pacific region across the Arctic Ocean. Putin also said that Russia will restore a number of Arctic military air bases that fell into neglect after the 1991 collapse of the Soviet Union. Russia, the United States, Canada, Denmark and Norway have all been trying to assert jurisdiction over parts of the Arctic, which is believed to hold up to a quarter of the planet’s undiscovered oil and gas. In 2007, Russia staked a symbolic claim to the Arctic seabed by dropping a canister containing the Russian flag on the ocean floor from a small submarine at the North Pole. Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu said Tuesday that the military next year will form a dedicated group of forces in the Arctic to protect Russia’s national interests in the region.—AP

Hollande to visit Central African Republic P ARIS — French President Francois Hollande will visit the Central African Republic, according to a statement issued by his office, after boosting French troops in order restore stability in the country. Hollande will visit the country on his way back from South Africa, where he was due to attend a ceremony to honor Nelson Mandela. Paris raised its military presence in the Central African Republic to 1,600 troops during the weekend as waves of religious violence swept over its former colony.— Reuters

Bosnian musician to help poor Roma study music S ARAJEVO —Bosnia’s most popular musician is searching for talented Roma children to help them get an education in music. Furthermore, a 63-yearold former rock star Goran Bregovic visited Sarajevo’s biggest Roma settlement of Gorica. That’s the same name he has given his new foundation, which will provide scholarships to Roma kids who wish to study music but can’t afford to. Bregovic has built an international career on film music inspired by traditional Balkan and Gypsy tunes. He says it’s time to give something back to this underprivileged group that has inspired so many European composers. Nearly half of the Roma in Bosnia are illiterate. Most live in makeshift settlements in extreme poverty and operate on the margins of society.—AP

M ANILA —Teen heartthrob Justin Bieber visited young victims of Typhoon Haiyan , traveling to the Philippines after launching a worldwide campaign to help those affected by the deadly storm. Bieber arrived from Australia and flew to Tacloban, the devastated capital of central Leyte province, where he distributed shirts, toys and basketballs to children. The 19-year-old pop star visited a Tacloban elementary school that is being used as an evacuation center despite being heavily damaged by last month’s typhoon, which left nearly 6,000 people dead and more than 1,700 others missing, and flattened entire towns and villages in the central Philippines.—AP

North Korea’s ‘reign of terror’ worries South’s leader Justin Bieber, left, exchanges high-fives with children survivors of typhoon Haiyan during his visit to Tacloban city. S EOUL —North Korea is engaged in a purge amounting to a “reign of terror” that has claimed the scalp of the country’s second most powerful man and risks further damaging relations with the South, President Park Geunhye said.Park took office in Seoul earlier this year as North Korea conducted its tional de la Haute “It is certainly a possiMinister Sergey Lavrov and G E N E VA —Organizers are considering moving the bility that is being consid- more than two dozen other Horlogerie, a luxury watch third nuclear test, enraging very seriously,” foreign ministers are ex- fair that draws more than world public opinion, and opening of January’s Syria ered peace conference to the Momal-Vanian told report- pected to deliver speeches 12,000 people to Geneva, a threatened to engulf its southduring the first day of the global center of watchmak- ern neighbour and its ally, the other end of Lake Geneva ers. The timing for the conference. The actual ne- ing. Geneva’s hotel rooms United States, in a war. The because of a luxury watch “Geneva 2” conference gotiations between Presi- are booked. Momal-Vanian isolated state shelled a South fair. U.N. spokeswoman aimed at ending Syria’s civil dent Bashar Assad’s gov- noted that the Syrian nego- Korean island in 2010 and is Corinne Momal-Vanian said war was set by U.N. Secre- ernment and armed Syrian tiations for which there is widely believed to have sunk Tuesday the Jan. 22 start of tary-General Ban Ki-moon opposition groups would no fixed end date would still a South Korean naval vessel be conducted at the historic in the same year. the meeting on Syria may after high-level discussions begin the second day. “North Korea is currently But the first three days Palais des Nations in need to be moved to the involving the United States Swiss town of Montreux be- and Russia, Syria’s key ally. of the planned conference Geneva that serves as the carrying out a reign of terror, U.S. Secretary of State overlap with the 24th edi- U.N.’s European headquar- undertaking a large-scale cause of insufficient hotel purge in order to strengthen John Kerry, Russian Foreign tion of the Salon Interna- ters.—AP rooms in Geneva. Kim Jong Un’s power,” Park told a cabinet meeting, part of which was broadcast on television.“From now on, South-North Korea relations may become more unstable.” In her usual carefully scripted manner, the president called for vigilance to the wealthy No one immediately Iraq’s Shi’ite-led govern- safeguard BAGHDAD—A suicide A MMAN — Radical Muslim bomber killed 11 people and claimed responsibility, but ment says the violence is South’s achievements. “In times like these, I cleric Abu Qatada told a Jor- wounded 20 at a Shi’ite suicide bombings have been being fuelled by the war in danian court, he was not Muslim funeral in a city a favored tactic of Sunni in- neighboring Syria, which has think it is a nation’s duty and guilty of terrorism charges northeast of Baghdad, po- surgents linked to al Qaeda stirred sectarian tensions politicians’ job to keep people safe and free democand challenged its authority lice said, as Iraqi insurgents and who are widely blamed across the Middle East. According to the United racy strong,” she told the to try him under the terms of pursue a campaign of deadly for this year’s surge in violence that has mostly tar- Nations, more than 8,000 meeting.—Reuters his extradition from Britain attacks. people have been killed in five months ago. The bombing took place geted civilians. Baquba has been hit by Iraq in the first 11 months of Appearing in court in in Baquba, 65 km (40 miles) brown prison fatigues, Abu from of the capital at a fu- some of the deadliest at- 2013, meaning that this year Qatada said the presence of neral for a group of Shi’ite tacks, and earlier this month may end up being the a military judge in the panel shepherds who had been a suicide bomber blew him- bloodiest since Sunniof three judges violated the killed by unidentified gun- self up at a funeral in a Shi’ite bloodshed peaked in nearby town. 2006-07.—Reuters agreement under which he men outside the city. was flown back to Jordan in O SLO — Israel, Egypt and July after many years of leNorth Korea should regal battles in Britain. nounce chemical weapons, While in Britain he was especially after Syria joined convicted and sentenced in the convention banning absentia by a Jordanian them and three other nations court to life imprisonment for plan to do so, the chief of an conspiring to carry out terinternational watchdog said. rorist attacks against U.S. K IEV —Top Western diplo- tors have occupied for weeks other Ukraine, a European Ahmet Uzumcu, head of and other targets inside Jor- mats headed to Kiev Tues- to protest against one, which doesn’t want to the Nobel Peace Prize-winning dan. day to try to defuse a stand- Yanukovych’s decision to go to Russia,” said protester Organisation for the ProhibiHe is now being retried on off between President Viktor back away from an agreement Anton Ostriysko, 35, who tion of Chemical Weapons those charges. “I have Yanukovych’s government with the European Union and was warming himself at a fire (OPCW), said Angola, been prevented from defend- and thousands of demon- tilt toward Russia instead. after a night shift at the camp. Myanmar and South Sudan ing myself for a long period, strators, following a night in But the atmosphere in the U.S. Assistant Secretary of were preparing to join the pact. and God knows that I am inno- which police in riot gear dis- opposition tent camp, in a State Victoria Nuland met with “Now since Syria has becent,” said Abu Qatada, say- mantled protesters’ encamp- central square known as the top opposition leaders and come a member country, I ing that the charges against him ments outside government Maidan, appeared calm. Mu- was also slated to meet with think (Israel) can reconsider,” were fabricated. sic blasted from a giant stage, Yanukovych. Ashton was due Uzumcu told Reuters in Oslo, buildings. “There has been a betrayal where he accepted the 2013 But a compromise ap- activists lined up to receive to arrive later in the day. of the agreement under which I peared elusive, as dozens of food from field kitchens and Riot police try to displace Nobel award for the OPCW. have come. There is now a mili- pro-government activists black-robed Orthodox priests pro-European Union activIsrael, which has observer tary judge - this is the first be- blocked the entrance to the talked to activists to boost ists from their barricades at status at the OPCW, signed trayal by you. I have come to European Commission office morale, careful not to slip on the Ukrainian pres … the convention in 1993, but be tried by civilian judges,” said in Kiev just hours before the a thick crust of ice and snow Yanukovych also sat down has never ratified it. the Islamist cleric, whose real arrival of EU foreign policy that blanketed the Ukrainian with his three predecessors As with its presumed name is Mahmoud Othman. chief Catherine Ashton. capital. “We are standing on as part of so-called “nation- nuclear arsenal, Israel has “This court is a betrayal of the Maidan so that wide roundtable” discus- never publicly admitted havRiot police maintained a the agreement and I don’t recog- strong presence in down- Yanukovych will be afraid sions aimed at defusing the ing chemical weapons.— nize it,” he said.—Reuters Reuters town Kiev, which demonstra- and know that there is an- crisis.—AP

UN eyes Montreux for Syria peace conference

Abu Qatada challenges Jordanian court authority

Suicide bomber kills 11 at Shi’ite funeral in Iraq

Israel, others urged to join chemical arms treaty

Western envoys go to Kiev hoping to defuse crisis

Central African Republic prepares for deployment JACEY FORTIN


HE African Union is preparing to deploy thousands of troops in the Central African Republic as a deadly conflict there spirals further out of control. Residents of Bossangoa, in Central African Republic, shelter from gunfire as Multinational Force of Central Africa (FOMAC) peacekeeping troops move to try to protect the population from anti-balaka attacks in the town. Dec. 5, 2013. African Union (AU) Deputy Chairperson Erastus Mwencha met with diplomats at its headquarters in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, to work out the details of AU troops’ deployments, logistics and funding. After the meeting, he told IPS that Burundi is the only confirmed troop supplier so far, but several other countries including Rwanda and the Republic of the Congo are discussing sending forces as well. French troops have already begun deployments in the capital city of Bangui, which was taken over by a rebel coalition called Seleka in March. Since beginning their advance across the country in December 2012, Seleka fighters have caused turmoil across the countryside, further destabilising areas already plagued by rampant poverty and food insecurity. In Bangui the situation has been especially dire since Thursday, Dec. 5, Amy Martin, head of the Bangui branch of the United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs, told IPS. “Heavy arms were being fired, light weapons were being fired, and tensions remain very high in some neighbourhoods,” she said, adding that the problems are just as serious outside of the capital.3 “In the interior, Seleka units have taken control of territories, and whoever was the commander became the law in each town. Those people, having no support from the central government, are basically living off the population, partly through illegal taxation. So you end up with a bunch of warlords and criminal gangs.” A U.N. resolution last week approved the deployment of up to 1,200 French and 3,500 African troops to help stabilise the country of 4.6 million. But following the recent surge in violence, which has already killed at least 400 people in Bangui since Thursday according to the Red Cross, African and European leaders agreed at a weekend summit in Paris to increase the number of French troops to 1,600, and the number of African troops to as much as 6,000. Regarding funding, Mwencha noted that “we have been grateful that the U.S. and the European Union have already made some indication to support these operations, and so we are also trying to coordinate to see how their support can be channelled to support this mission.” The International Support Mission to the Central African Republic, or MISCA, will be fully deployed as soon as possible. They will join the African forces that were already in CAR as part of the Mission for the consolidation of peace in Central African Republic (MICOPAX), a peacekeeping group first stationed there on the initiative of the Economic Community of Central African States. “MISCA is going to be an African mission, so all troops be under the command of the African forces, but there will of course be a transition,” Mwencha said. “There was MICOPAX and there are the French, but all those will converge with the African forces once we’re on the ground.” Local Seleka forces exit the Multinational Force of Central Africa (FOMAC) compound after their commander, Colonel Saleh, met with Captain Wilson of the FOMAC peacekeepers at the FOMAC compound during a lull in the fighting between anti-balaka and Seleka forces. Dec. 7, 2013. Courtesy: Marcus Bleasdale/VII for Human Rights Watch But the CAR crisis has raised some doubts of African troops’ abilities to quell violence on the continent, according to Thierry Vircoulon, the International Crisis Groups’ project director for Central Africa. “Unfortunately, the French are the only ones willing and able to do the job at this stage. The African peacekeeping force demonstrated its ineffectiveness to secure Bangui,” he said to IPS, noting that the French troop deployment was welcomed by CAR and its neighbours during the U.N. summit. At the Paris summit, leaders discussed the prospects of setting up a permanent African force capable of intervening independently in times of crisis, rather than wading through the logistics of each individual deployment whenever crises occur.“The African countries must now fulfil the 6,000 troops ceiling for MISCA, and everybody wonders whether they can do this, and how fast,” said Vircoulon. “The CAR crisis has reinforced the scepticism about the peace and security architecture to say the least.” As African soldiers gear up for deployment, the humanitarian situation in CAR is worsening by the day. Hundreds of thousands of people – about 10 percent of the population – have been displaced and about 25 percent are in need of food aid, according to the U.N. Seleka rebels have been accused of committing severe human rights abuses against men, women and children over the past year.Seleka first coalesced for political reasons its leaders sought the ouster of former president Francois Bozize. Former Seleka commander Michel Djotodia has taken over as president of CAR and has promised to hold elections within 18 months. He formally dissolved his already-disintegrating rebel coalition in September but has failed to enforce law and order. Many one-time Seleka members have turned to looting and banditry, spurring the rise of self-defence groups called “anti-balaka”. The worsening tensions between the mostlyMuslim rebels and the majority-Christian civilian population now threaten to turn the crisis into a religious conflict. “The population is fatigued they have no food left for their families, and they’ve been looted so many times,” said Martin. “And out of this evolved more organised armed groups, and that’s what we’ve seen since August: antibalaka groups have been gaining strength and becoming more organised. But there’s no government; there’s no vision of leadership to put this country back on track. It’s anarchy.” —Courtesy Inter Press Service

People of the Gulf, unite! M. FAHAD AL-HARTHI across the region, an oasis of se- the global energy market and the


HE Arab world is now open to all options and the accelerating developments entail myriad dangers. Today, the Gulf states have an opportunity, coupled with risks. And as they say, “during times of crises there are chances for new beginnings.” The Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) states are facing major challenges that call upon their leaders to realize their responsibilities while taking decisive decision. In politics, taking decisions proactively is preferable to making them under the exigencies of circumstances and necessity. Gulf citizens live in enormous wealth, their countries having a huge gross domestic product (GDP) and political stability that makes them, in light of the anarchy that has swept

curity and stability. These are positive facts but, at the same time, their sustainability is not guaranteed especially as the accelerating changes make prediction impossible. These changes are not limited to the so-called Arab Spring or the new reality it has created, or the successive crises such as the Syrian crisis and the Egyptian developments. Rather, they could be the beginning of a new chapter of political and strategic changes in the region. The way the US has been dealing with the political problems in the region, for instance, has sent a clear message that its strategic commitment toward the region’s stability is taking a turning point, and its interaction with the new players in the Arab political arena signaled new political directions. On the other hand, changes in

emergence of shale oil and the declining US dependence on Gulf oil means that foreign interests will change according to these variables. The US policy is an interestbased policy rather than a principled one. As such, American policy will change according to their evolving interests. Also, changes in the global balance of power and the emergence of new powers will impose different political agendas. Yet, the Gulf states remain the only states that have historically succeeded in establishing a homogeneous alliance (GCC), which has been able thus far to play an important role in the economic, social and political harmony among its member states despite what is being said about its shortcomings, project delays and modest achievements.

However, the Gulf region has serious future concerns. The growing power and expanding activities of Iran require a political response in dealing with this reality, taking into consideration the West-Iranian nuclear deal, which sends out a clear message for new trends and changes in the political map of the region. In politics, the principle of power is paramount, and power comes from a strong alliance that imposes itself on others as opposed to the way they deal with it in any future settlements or political agreements. The Gulf states, as societies where political awareness is developing, have started to see a growing political voice from the street and a diversity of views, which is normal in the development of any society and requires an open mind to accommodate the diversity as it is a source of

strength and important to a healthy state. The freedom of the press and the development of the social media promoted dialogue, in addition to raising the hopes and aspirations of the peoples of the region. The demographic problem is like a time bomb threatening the future of the countries in the region. There are a lot of changes happening in the region and they need to be handled in a different way because what was successful in the past might not work now. The importance of Gulf unity is an obvious fact. However, the question that still persists is about the form of this new entity and how to protect the sovereignty of its member states. There has been a conviction among Arabs since the collapse of the Egyptian-Syrian unity in 1958 that any attempt at unity in the Arab world is doomed to failure.

The series of unity projects that were announced from time to time during a visit by a country’s leader to another were followed by wars between these countries. The long accounts of political immaturity, which was a feature of Arab regimes, made the word “unity” suspicious to people. Successful unity initiatives are the ones that are built gradually, with a clear goal, committed to transparency, and are convincing to the various sections of society. The European unity project had a rational motive that each of its states will benefit from its unity economically. The character, which seems best suited to the union of the Gulf states, is the confederation formula that unites the core tasks but gives, at the same time, the required independence for the sovereignty of states. Some Gulf states fear the

unity of the Gulf because countries are not the same in terms of size and potentials. These countries fear that the larger ones will dominate the system. In its general and superficial form, this excuse is justified. However, experience has shown us that countries such as Belgium and the Netherlands were able to consolidate their status in the EU in the presence of larger countries, such as Germany, France and Britain. Enacting statutory formulas for these blocs are the guarantee for such a project. Also the people’s participation guarantees continuity and development as it makes the unity related to the people and not only to governments. Some believe that the unfulfilled independence of some states puts an obstacle to unity, considering that the Union will be among independent countries.

This makes independence and sovereignty-seeking countries deal with any unity initiative in a more sensitive manner. In the literature of national loyalty, sentiments mix with logic particularly that the Arab people are emotional and vulnerable while issues of sovereignty require tough decisions. It is incorrect to take crucial decisions and then portray them as reactions to events. The Union project is a strategic step. When King Abdullah bin Abdulaziz proposed the initiative to the GCC members in December 2011, he based his proposition on the fourth article for the Statutes of the GCC, which stipulates that among its objectives is “the application of coordination and integration between members states in all aspects reaching unity.” —Courtesy Arab news

Karzai lashes out at US ‘threats’ From Page 1 to the plan to keep thousands of forces in Afghanistan after 2014 for a training and counterterrorism mission. Karzai says he backs the long-delayed security agreement but balks at signing it himself. Although a national assembly of 2,500 delegates known as the Loya Jirga endorsed the deal last month and backed a U.S. request that it be signed by the end of the year, Karzai is deferring that to his successor. Much is at stake if the deal falls apart. Afghanistan could lose up to $15 billion a year in aid, effectively collapsing its fragile economy and making it unable to pay its army and police. In the interview, Karzai said he could “green light” the agreement before presidential elections due next April under two conditions: an end to airstrikes and foreign raids on Afghan homes; and greater U.S. efforts to help broker peace with the Taliban.—AP

BD court stays From Page 1 stopped the execution of Abdul Quader Molla, a senior leader of the Jamaat-e-Islami party described by prosecutors as “the Butcher of Mirpur”, until 10:30 am Wednesday (0430 GMT), the court registrar said. “The execution has been halted pending a hearing on Wednesday,” the registrar told AFP, without elaborating. Defence lawyer Shishir Munir said they were seeking a last-minute review of Molla’s execution order as the country’s constitution enshrines rights for a death-row convict to have his appeal heard in the Supreme Court. Earlier in the day, Bangladesh’s secular government had said it would go ahead with the execution of Molla at one minute past midnight – despite a global outcry over the lack of a right to appeal. In anticipation of the hanging, security has been tightened across the country and outside the jail in Old Dhaka where it was set to take place.—AFP

Govt ordered From Page 1 away 35 persons from the Malakand detention centre, but only seven of the 35 were presented. The intelligence agencies or the police have no powers to carry out enforced disappearances or unlawful custody, the order stated. The chief justice ordered the prime minister, the chief minister and governor of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa to ensure the missing persons are recovered in one week. The Supreme Court also declared the secret detention of 35 people by army personnel illegal. The bench said that statements by the relatives of the missing persons and jail superintendent proved that army was involved in the illegal transfer of these people from a jail Malakand and subsequent detention at an unidentified location. Expressing anger over how the government responded to this issue, the apex court said the defence ministry initially denied that the military was involved in the case but admitted to it later. The judges also called for proper legislation in this regard.

Court orders From Page 1 their customers. It also said that Nepra was not playing its role in ensuring low prices for consumers. The bench further said that loadshedding should be reduced in residential, commercial and agricultural sectors. The court also ordered that subsidies on petroleum products should not be removed and that their prices should be determined based on the rates in world market. The Supreme Court also declared the extra nine per cent General Sales Tax on Compressed Natural Gas as unlawful and ordered the Oil and Gas Regulatory Authority to submit a revised notification in this regards within a week. In a hearing on Dec 3, on CNG prices, Chief Justice Iftikhar Muhammad Chaudhry remarked that the government had no right to collect 25 per cent GST. The chief justice said the government was already charging 17 per cent GST and extra nine per cent seemed unjustifiable. The three-member panel further questioned the mechanism according to which prices were increased and remarked that the issue was being complicated.

Pakistan wants peace of the region can benefit from the strategic location of Pakistan. Nawaz Sharif said Pakistan wants good relations with its neighbours including India and Afghanistan and desires peace, security and stability in the region for ensuring speedy economic growth and welfare of the people. He said Pakistan is also working on various projects to overcome energy crisis in the region including Pak-Iran gas pipeline, Turkmenistan-Pakistan-India-Afghanistan Gas Pipe Gas and Casa 1000 power projects. Speaking at a lunch hosted by the European Union ambassadors, Muhammad Nawaz Sharif said the government is fully engaged in sensitizing international community about the impact of drone strikes in Pakistan and persuading it to find ways and means to curb terrorism are not counter-productive adding we want friendly relations with India, based on muKARACHI: PPP Patron-in-Chief Bilawal Bhutto Zardari is signing the People’s Human Rights Pledge on Tuesday. tual respect and esteem. He said Pakistan is looking forward to deepening further its cooperation with its European partners in key areas including From Page 1 roads for him criticized him for especially by invoking the suo trade, investment, energy, infraFrom Page 1 what they called “judicial dicta- with the military in the memo motu jurisdiction, overshadows structure development, educatorship”. They term his post res- scandal, he further said. The ju- the normal litigation,” Mr said Ira Helfand, the report’s tion and human resource develtoration tenure a period of me- diciary had not recovered from Mehmood said and reminded author. opment. dia exercise marked by “sound that shock when allegations that although PIL was meant to Helfand said that the study He said European countries, and fury signifying nothing.” were hurled at Dr Arsalan benefit ordinary citizens, early looked at India and Pakistan due However even today, many Iftikhar, son of the chief justice, resolution of normal cases to the longstanding tensions belawyers, human rights activists, by property tycoon Malik Riaz, would also serve the same cause. tween the nuclear-armed states, relatives of missing persons and he said. A number of senior “Courts cannot bring revo- which have fought three fullmembers of civil society are of counsels approached by Paki- lutions,” said Dr Muhammad fledged wars since indepento a dollar. the opinion that the CJP is a hope stan Observer praised the initia- Abdul Basit, author of a book dence and partition in 1947. The Finance Minister said for the hopeless, a voice for the tives of a series of public inter- on law of contempt of the court, But Helfand said that the voiceless and a source of est litigations (PIL) aimed at adding that a cautious exercise planet would expect a similar that the Government has restrength for the powerless. Al- protecting social, economic and of the authority would be much apocalyptic impact from any doubled its efforts to increase though the CJP could not re- religious rights of the people, but appreciated. The entire era was limited nuclear war. Modern its foreign exchange reserves. cover all the missing persons, at the same time they stressed full of both positives and nuclear weapons are far more In this connection, he said that yet he kept building up pressure the need for drastic enhance- negativities, Dr Basit said. Al- powerful than the US bombs the Government expects a payagainst the agencies and institu- ment in lower ranks of the judi- though he appreciated the strong that killed more than 200,000 ment from Etisalat of $ 800 tions that were keeping them in ciary. protective wall against corrup- people in Hiroshima and million, $800 million against outstanding payments due on “I hope the judicial system tion, he was against too much Nagasaki in 1945. their custody, said Ghaffar relative of a missing person from will see a marked change since use of suo motu powers. “With a large war between account of Coalition Support the public at large has been afBalochistan. Senior Advocate Supreme the United States and Russia, we Fund, over $ 1.2 billion against A senior lawyer of the Su- fected,” said Tariq Mehmood, Court and former president of are talking about the possible - auction of spectrum license bepreme Court wishing not to be former president of the Supreme Islamabad High Court Bar, not certain, but possible - extinc- sides $137 million are exquoted however, Tuesday said, Court Bar Association (SCBA). Nayab Hassan Gardezi pinning tion of the human race. “In this pected from Islamic Developno doubt Chief Justice Iftikhar Talking to media outside the hopes on the new Chief Jusitice kind of war, biologically there ment Bank tomorrow. The Governor State Bank Muhammad Chaudhry infused a Supreme Court building, he was Tasaddaq Hussain Jilani called are going to be people survivnew spirit in judiciary and un- of the view that much improve- for focusing more on litigants’ ing somewhere on the planet but Mr. Yaseen Anwar informed der him, lawyers launched his- ment was needed on the case problems and saying, “Judiciary the chaos that would result from the meeting that in the last 2 toric movement for indepen- management system at the level should weed out corruption from this will dwarf anything we’ve days exporters have liquidated export proceeds totaling $70 dence of judiciary, the hon’ble of the subordinate judiciary its ranks and files at all levels.” ever seen,” Helfand said. chief justice failed to clear the since the handling of family He said people had pinned hopes The study said that the black million, the government is rebacklog of 1.5 million cases matters and cases on criminal as on the judiciary after its resto- carbon aerosol particles kicked ceiving $ 30 million per day both in the superior and the well as civil sides left much to ration, but it had failed to come into the atmosphere by a South on account of remittances be desired, adding that the suf- up to their expectations as the Asian nuclear war would reduce which has improved the forlower judiciary. The last three years were ferings of poor litigants had not performance at the lower tier of US corn and soybean production eign exchange position. even worse when judiciary faced been ameliorated. the judiciary remained a ques- by around 10 percent over a de“The excessive use of PIL, tion mark. allegations of having colluded cade. The particles would also reduce China’s rice production by From Back Page an average of 21 percent over four years and by another 10 tions, General (r) Talat From Page 1 slogan “Mandela Forever,” they percent over the following six Masood observed that such hailed it as a hopeful sign, writdanced and sang — oblivious to years. The updated study also processes often took time, and ing on its website: “May this... found severe effects on China’s that it was immature to expect be the beginning of the end of of national sorrow triggered by a persistent morning drizzle. Mandela’s death last Thursday, “This is once in your life. wheat, which is vital to the coun- immediate outcomes. He the US aggressions?” But it remained unclear the mood was upbeat, with This is history,” said Noma try despite its association with maintained that while creativwhether it would presage a people determined to celebrate Kova, 36. “I didn’t want to rice. ity and innovation were vital China’s wheat production components of any effective meaningful thaw in relations the memory of one of the 20th watch this on TV.” Many of the songs flowing would plunge by 50 percent the Track II discussion, the sucacross the shark-infested waters century’s towering political figures. from the terraces harked back to first year after the nuclear war cess or failure of such interoff Cuba. “He’s God given, he’s God the apartheid-era struggle, but and would still be 31 percent ventions hinged largely on the Tens of thousands of South Africans converged in sorrow, taken. We will never stop to the atmosphere was one of in- below baseline a decade later, it genuine commitment of the atsaid. celebration and pride Tuesday cherish him,” said Shahim clusion. tending delegates towards The study said it was impos- achieving meaningful conflict News of Mandela’s death at on Soweto’s World Cup sta- Ismail, who took a day off from dium, to sit side-by-side with the sports academy he runs in his home in Johannesburg reso- sible to estimate the exact im- resolution and reconciliation. presidents, priests and queens at Johannesburg to attend the nated around the world, trigger- pact of nuclear war. He called Pakistan former Ambassador ing a wave of loving admiration for further research, voicing to India, Aziz Ahmad Khan suga memorial service for unifying event. With access offered on a from political and religious lead- alarm that policymakers in gested that backchannel converglobal icon Nelson Mandela. Close to 100 world leaders first-comer basis, crowds began ers, some of whom agree on nuclear powers were not look- sations were specifically designed ing more thoroughly at the idea for the purpose of conducting conwere among 80,000 people ex- gathering before daybreak and, little else. The presidents of the United of a nuclear famine. pected to cram into the venue in as the gates opened, they versations that could not take But he said, ultimately, the place publicly. He was of the opinSoweto — the crucible of swarmed into the stadium, look- States and Cuba were among Mandela’s anti-apartheid ing for the best vantage point on those sharing the memorial only answer was the abolition of ion that each Track II had its own stage, pausing rivalries that date nuclear weapons. “This is a di- character and personality – in this struggle — to bid farewell to a the sloped terracing. Wrapped in the South Afri- back to the Cold War to pay trib- saster so massive in scale that context, Israel-Palestinian diploman whose life story earned uncommon universal respect. can flag or yellow-green ute as millions around the world really no preparation is possible. macy was markedly different We must prevent this,” he from Indo-Pak diplomacy. Despite the profound sense coloured shawls printed with the looked on.—Agencies said.—INP He stressed to include former government officials in Track II contingents, “since these officials could often express independent From Page 1 From Page 1 the employees of the institutions ing diplomatic channels for the to be privatized in future. forts to combat terrorism and and feasible solutions once rehalting of drone attacks as these are counter-productive for peace on dry lease which will ply on Twelve percent shares of PIA extremism on an enduring ba- leased from the constraints of government protocol.” domestic routes and the gulf are with the employees of the sis. and security in the region. countries. The induction of these airline and they will not be withThe Minister regretted that Secretary Hagel assured the some political parties resorted to aircraft will help improve the drawn. Prime Minister that the AdminThe House passed another istration was engaged with Consit-ins and other political gim- performance of the PIA and promicks on the matter. He said vide best possible traveling fa- resolution urging the govern- gress to ensure that the cooperament to take steps to alleviate tion with Pakistan was not imtheir tactics have proved cilities to the passengers. Shaikh Aftab said the gov- poverty from the country. pacted negatively. counter-productive during the last ten and fifteen days. He said ernment plans to privatize 26 Speaking on the resolution‚ Parwe need to adopt appropriate percent shares of the national liamentary Secretary for FiSpokesperson drew the atflag carrier but no employee of nance Rana Muhammad Afzal tention of the journalists to the diplomatic channels. Leader of Pakistan Tehrik the airline will be laid off. He Khan said the government is statement of the US Department Insaf Arif Alvi clarified that his said we are here not snatch bread giving priority to the industrial of Defence, which inter alia states party blocked NATO’s supplies from the people but to give them sector for generation of employ- “Secretary Hagel raised the imto express resentment on drone employment. The Minister of ment opportunities and promo- portance of keeping the ground attacks and this move has no State said that PIA and Pakistan tion of exports. supply routes out of Afghanistan Those who spoke on the open and thanked the Prime Minpolitical motives. Speaking on Steel Mills will be revived to its the motion of Shaikh Rohale old glory and made profitable resolution included Imran ister for his Government’s conKhattak‚ Sher Akbar Khan‚ tinued support”. Asghar regarding the perfor- entities. Members belonging to Pa- Shafqat Mahmood‚ Yusuf mance of Pakistan International Airlines‚ Minister of State for kistan Peoples Party staged a Talpur‚ Sajid Ahmad‚ Shaikh Parliamentary Affairs Shaikh token walkout from House Rashid Ahmad and Ghulam From Page 1 Aftab Ahmad said the govern- over the privatization policy of Ahmad Bilour. The House ment has released 16 billion ru- the government. Leader of the passed two resolutions urging factions of gang-war entered pees to improve the performance Opposition Syed Khurshid the government to establish a an armed feud in Pak Colony’s of the national flag carrier. He Ahmad Shah strongly opposed university in Hyderabad and an Magsi Locality, where a 32-year said this amount is also being the privatization of state insti- agriculture university in Abdun Naeem, 30-year Iqbal used to repair the non-opera- tutions including Pakistan In- Sahiwal. and one-year Shah Nawaz were Speaking on the resolutions‚ killed. tional ten aircraft of the PIA. ternational Airlines and PakiThe Minister of State regret- stan Steel Mills terming it as Minister of State for Education Orangi’s Gulshan-e-Zia ted that the previous government an anti-labour and anti-worker Muhammad Balighur Rehman turned into flashpoint today said Pakistan is lagging behind when 25-year Bahram was shot did not take practical steps to step. Minister of State for Parlia- in higher education and there is to death. Gunfire incident took steer the airline out of crisis and the steps taken by the present mentary Affairs Shaikh Aftab a dire need for establishment of place near Mewa Shah Cemgovernment has helped reduce Ahmad said the government will universities in public and private etery in Lyari, where 28-year its losses. He said we have taken take all the decisions in the na- sectors to enhance percentage of Shakoor was critically injured; four aircraft from Turkey on wet tional interests. He assured that higher education from eight to however, he could not survive lease and four more will be taken full protection will be given to fifteen percent. at hospital.—Online

Era of suo motu comes to an end

India-Pak nuclear war

From Page 1 as our largest trade and investment partners, enjoy a unique position in our priorities. The Prime Minister said that we are very satisfied and deeply encouraged to see the progress towards grant of GSP+ status to Pakistan, which is going to be voted on by the European Parliament. The Prime Minister said Pakistan is a country full of potential, but not yet really exploited and we are looking to working closely with European Union both in exploring, exploiting and developing this potential and realizing the opportunities. Nawaz Sharif said the government is determined to rid Pakistan of terrorism and extremism. He said this menace is complex in nature and is rooted in the events of the past three decades, having global, regional and local dimensions. He said we believe the best way to deal with these challenges is through national consensus, which we are generating through various forums including the All Parties Conference and the Parliamentary resolutions. The Prime Minister said that one of the foremost foreign policy priorities of Pakistan is to have good neighborly, friendly and cooperative relations with all our neighbors in-

cluding India, based on mutual respect and esteem. Prime Minister Muhammad Nawaz Sharif has said that Pakistan is looking forward to deepening further its cooperation with its European partners in key areas including trade, investment, energy, infrastructure development, education and human resource development. European countries, as our largest trade and investment partners, enjoy a unique position in our priorities, he added. The prime minister said this while addressing the ambassadors of European countries to Pakistan at a luncheon hosted in their honour at the Prime Minister House on Tuesday. He said that we are very satisfied and deeply encouraged to see the progress towards grant of GSP+ status to Pakistan, which is going to be voted on by the European Parliament. The prime minister Pakistan is a country full of potential, but not yet really exploited and we are looking to working closely with EU, both in exploring, exploiting and developing this potential and realizing the opportunities. The High Commissioner of UK and Ambassadors of France, Italy, Germany, Czech, Spain, Hungary, Greece Romania, Belgium, Denmark, Netherlands, Sweden, Portugal, Poland and Ambassador of European Union to Pakistan attended the lunch.

Dar, bankers discuss steps

Track II role

World unites for Mandela memorial

NA demands immediate halt to drone strikes

No threat

Karachi violence

From Page 1 The Finance Minister said that he is confident that the situation of inflows will further improve and those who speculate on Pakistani currency would only end as loosers. The Government encouraged by positive outlook projected by “Standard and Poor” ‘Moodys’, planned to float a Global Rupee bond with the assistance of IFC who are also interested in floating of sovereign bonds of Pakistan which has received a very positive response from the market. The Finance Minister thanked the Executives of Commercial Banks for coop-

erating with the Government as it moves towards building reserves and stabilizing the market. On this occasion Mr. Atif Bajwa, President Alfalah Bank, Mr. Imran Maqbool, President MCB, Mr. Tariq Mehmood, President ABL, pledged their support and cooperation to the Government in its efforts to stabilize the economy and the markets. They also welcomed the Finance Minister’s frank and candid assessment of the economy and said that they share his optimistic outlook of Pakistan’s economy and its sound fundamentals which would send a very positive message to the markets.

Pakistan, Iran to speed up work on gas pipeline project STAFF REPORTER I SLAMABAD —In the stron-

Fazl elected Kashmir Committee chairman ISLAMABAD—Maulana Fazlur Rehman has been elected unanimously Chair- ISLAMABAD: Acting President Syed Nayyer Hussain Bokhari, Prime Minister Muhammad Nawaz Sharif, Sardar man of Kashmir Committee of Ayaz Sadiq, Speaker National Assembly and Senator Mushahid Hussain Sayed standing for national anthem before the National Assembly. Simi- the proceedings closing session of Asian Parliamentary Assembly at a local hotel. larly, Sheikh Rohail Asghar has been elected as Chairman Standing Committee on Defence, Khalid Magsi as Chairman Standing Committee of National Health and Services.—Online

Some parties jeopardizing national interests: PR

‘Situation worst in Punjab jails’ LAHORE—A report has been presented in Punjab Assembly during questions session on Tuesday which revealed serious irregularities in Punjab Jails. The report said that there was a space of around 21527 prisoners but at present time more than 48000 prisoners are living in same area of the jail. According to the report, the prisoners get only rupees 60 by the government of Punjab for the whole day. The report revealed that serious diseases are found in prisoners when the administration took blood test of 3500 prisoners. 103 were diagnosed with TB, 14 with Hepatitis B and C found while 50 prisoners declared as AIDS patient. The experts declared it as an alarming situation and said this list could become longer when the administration took blood test of all the prisoners.—Online

Rs 25b allocated to PM loan scheme ISLAMABAD—The Spokesman of the Ministry of Finance has clarified reports appearing in a section of media that the government had allocated only Rs.5 billion for the Prime Minister’s Youth Business Loan. The Spokesman said that the correct position is that an amount of Rs.25 billion has been budgeted on account of Youth Schemes under Prime Minister’s Youth Programme. The Spokesman said the Prime Minister’s Youth Loan envisages facilitation of business loans to youth ranging from Rs.100,000 to R.2 million at concessional mark up. He further said that Banks would sanction loans totaling Rs.100 billion to nearly 100,000 applicants through computer balloting to ensure transparency.—INP

15 illegal occupants held Observer Report L A H O R E —Fifteen illegal occupants were arrested by the Lahore police during an operation conducted in Punjab University with help of the university administration in the wee hours of Tuesday morning. According to a Punjab University spokesperson, the Lahore police, along with the university administration, raided Hostels No 15 and 18 and arrested 15 illegal occupants.

Pakistani doctor wins $1m to fight child deaths

gest signal in months, Pakistan announced on Tuesday it had agreed with Iran to speed up implementation of the much-delayed gas pipeline project designed to link Iran’s giant South Pars gas field with consumers in South Asia. The United States opposes the $7.5-billion project because it could violate sanctions imposed on Iran over nuclear activities Washington suspects are aimed at developing an atom bomb, although Tehran denies this. The announcement comes after the Federal Min-

ister for Petroleum and Natural Resources Shahid Khaqan Abbasi traveled to Tehran with a high powered delegation to kick start work on the pipeline. Facing a massive energy crisis, gas for consumers was curbed for two days in Punjab on Tuesday, highlighting just how severe the crisis is and how badly Pakistan needs the gas injection from Iran. But little progress has been made on the pipeline in Pakistan for lack of funds and warnings it could be in violation of US sanctions, threatening string of aid that Pakistan gets. The Ministry of Foreign

Turkey charges 255 over mass protests

I SLAMABAD —A Pakistani ANKARA—Turkish prosecu- being razed to make way for a I SLAMABAD —Minister for the coming Local Govern- national interests and who doctor won a $1 million grant tors said on Tuesday they development project. ment elections. doing politics on nation inInformation, Broadcasting and National Heritage Senator Pervaiz Rashid said on Tuesday that some parties were jeopardizing national interests for the sake of some political gains. Talking to media persons after addressing a seminar organized by Ministry of Law, Justice and Human Rights here he said that sitins being staged by Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf to block NATO supplies were part of the plan to win some seats in

SC directs IHC to settle Nadra chief case I SLAMABAD —The Supreme Court has directed the Islamabad High Court (IHC) to settle the case of National Database and Registration Authority (NADRA) chairperson Tariq Malik in a month.In a surprise move, the government had removed Malik on the night of December 3 and appointed a new chairman within hours. However, the IHC had reinstated him the next morning and suspended his termination orders. Forwarding the government’s request challenging the reinstatement, the apex court also ordered the IHC to make a decision regarding its stay order in 15 days.—Online

“All this being done to win a few seats in LG elections. Politics being done on this issue otherwise one dinner changes a drone into a darling”, said the minister. NATO supplies, he said, were being done through international agreements and those who were blocking the same would be responsible for the consequences. TO a question he said that the masses should think who were working for the

terests. Answering a question he said that the present government has come to power through popular vote and was striving for recovery of missing persons. He said that the person who violated the Constitution and toppled the elected government was given guard of honour. He said no one will be allowed to violate the constitution which has guaranteed rights of women, children and minorities.—APP

Bilawal opposes privatization of institutions IRFAN ALIGI KARACHI—Pakistan People’s Party Parliamentarian (PPPP) Patron-in-chief Bilawal Bhutto Zardari said that the PPPP would continue it struggle for the elimination of black laws. The privatization of precious national institutions would not be acceptable. He was addressing a large gathering at the Sindh Chief Minister House Tuesday on the occasion of a ceremony held in commemoration of human rights on the occasion of World Human Rights Day, the theme was “Dastawez-e Azam – Ensur-

ing human Rights”. He also signed the 18 point human rights document. He said that the PPPP would continue its struggle for the elimination of terrorism, lawlessness, sectarian violence, intolerance and violence in all forms. While paying great tribute to his maternal grandfather, he said that the PPPP was the party of labourers founded by slain leader Zulfikuar Ali Bhutto, who wanted to transform the country into a welfare state where people would enjoy equal rights irrespective to their cast, colour or creed.

on Tuesday to fight early child mortality in a small fishing village in southern Pakistan in a contest financed by an American entrepreneur to find innovative ways to save lives, The Caplow Children’s Prize said. A proposal by Anita Zaidi, who heads the pediatrics department at the Aga Khan University in Karachi, beat out more than 550 other applications from more than 70 countries. The prize was founded and funded by entrepreneur Ted Caplow to find impactful and cost-effective ways to save children’s lives, according to a press release announcing the results.—AP

5.4 magnitude jolts felt in KP, Gilgit-Baltistan P ESHAWAR —Moderate tremors were felt in different areas of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and Gilgit-Baltistan late Monday. The earthquake was measured 5.4 at Richter scale. The jolts were also felt in Swat and Shangla. The epicenter was located in Hindukush Mountain Range at a depth of 132 kilometers.—Online

have charged 255 protesters, including seven foreigners, over mass demonstrations that swept the country in June. Those indicted face a range of charges including violating laws on demonstrations, damaging a place of worship and protecting criminals, as well as injuring civil servants and hijacking public transportation vehicles, a statement said. At least six people died and 8,000 people were injured in the three weeks of anti-government unrest that posed the biggest challenge to Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s rule. The demonstrations were sparked by a police crackdown on a peaceful sit-in to save Istanbul’s Gezi park from

The environmental protests spiralled into a mass outpouring of anger against Erdogan, who critics say is an increasingly authoritarian and polarising leader after 11 years in office. Some of the protesters in Istanbul had taken refuge in the Dolmabahce mosque on the banks of the Bosphorus near the Ottoman palace Erdogan uses as his office in the city. Several trials related to the protests are ongoing in several cities across the country. Last week, an Ankara court withdrew from the highly-charged trial of a riot policeman accused of killing a 26-year-old protester during demonstrations in the capital because of concerns over its impartiality.—AFP

Affairs release said both sides had agreed to speed up work to finish construction of the pipeline. “It was also agreed that a meeting will be held shortly between the experts of both sides to review parameters for accelerating work on I-P Gas pipeline,” the foreign ministry said in a statement. It did not say when the pipeline would be completed. Abbasi was accompanied by Secretary Petroleum Abid Saeed and MD of the Pakistan’s Interstate State Gas System Mobin Saulat. Under the contract, Iran would export 21.5 million cubic meters of gas per day to Pakistan from next year.

Bizenjo meets PM I SLAMABAD —Acting President National Party (NP) Hasil Bizenjo has threatened to quit his party’s alliance with ruling Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) if missing persons were not recovered. Bizenjo briefly met Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif at the sidelines of 6th annual meeting of the Asian Parliamentary Assembly (APA) on Tuesday and discussed with him the pressing issue of missing persons recently taken by the Supreme Court. The NP leader expressed his helplessness in the recovery of missing persons, saying that his party has gained the government in Balochistan but not powers. He was of the view that it would be hard for his party to continue being part of the ruling coalition despite nonrecovery of missing persons as ordered by the apex court.—INP

China, Afghanistan, Pakistan call for more coop KABUL —The two-day third Zhaohui, director general of agreed that under the current round of China- Afghanistan- Pakistan trilateral dialogue concluded in Kabul on Tuesday with agreement for further boosting cooperation among the three neighboring countries. Chaired by Ambassador Sultan Ahmad Bahin, director general of 3rd Political Department of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Afghanistan, Ambassador Luo

Asian Affairs Department of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the People’s Republic of China, and Muhammad Iftikhar Anjum, director general of Afghanistan Division in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Pakistan, the three sides agreed to cooperate and to maintain the security in Afghanistan and in the region. The three countries

situation it is of great significance for three Foreign Ministries to hold the trilateral dialogue and exchange views on regional situation and cooperation between the three countries, stressing that dialogue will play a positive role in enhancing friendly cooperation between the three countries and maintaining peace and stability in the region.—INP

Track II role in Pakistan-India dialogue seen as ‘critical’ AKHTAR JAMAL ISLAMABAD—Experts at an informal discussion agreed that Track II processes occupied a critical role in facilitating dialogue and reconciliation in the context of regional geopolitics. Speaking at a discussion hosted by think-tank “Jinnah Institute” Professor Peter Jones, convener of the Ottawa Dialogue noted that Track II dialogues and informal problem-solving workshops were crucial in helping informed policy dialogue. Professor Jones described how certain bigticket issues tended to

dominate discussions, leaving little room for addressing ‘softer’ issues. Peter Jones is well known strategic expert promoting Track II dialogue and has served as a senior analyst for the Security and Intelligence Secretariat of the Privy Council of Canada. Several other experts and journalists attended the roundtable discussion “Does Track II work in the IndiaPakistan Dialogue Process?” held in Islamabad on Tuesday. Speakers advocated that softer components of Track II conversations in the IndoPak context needed to be more imaginative, and that

organisers of such initiatives had the added responsibility to plug opinions and solutions within their governments and peace constituencies. Experts agreed that Track II conversations in South Asia were often forced to take place in a milieu of stasis and tension. However, there was also consensus that the IndoPak relationship needed greater predictability, and that the imperative for this was amplified in the light of increased destabilising factors. Commenting on the outcomes of Track II negotia

Continued on Page 7

Chief of Army Staff General Raheel Sharif meeting troops deployed in forward localities along the Line of Control.

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

3 Foods Linked with Depression


T’S no secret that we tend to eat a little more around the holidays. And with all the hustle and bustle of the season, many of us have trouble finding time to make healthy choices. That may be why it’s nearly impossible to secure a treadmill at the gym in January our resolutions are a reflection of our guilt. We know why we tend to eat poorly. But could our food choices be leading to something other than an expanding waistline? If our poor choices become a habit, certainly. According to recent studies, it’s possible that eating certain foods is associated with depression. Here are three foods you may want to avoid in excess this holiday season, and beyond. [7 Holiday Stress Busters] Refined Grains: Pasta is a quick meal, great for those busy nights when you have to spend most of your time shopping, baking or wrapping. But, it may not be a good meal to have every night. Pasta, white rice and bagels are all foods that have been identified as inflammatory and have been linked to depression in women ages 50 to 77, according to an October 2013 study in the journal Brain, Behavior and Immunity. In the study, researchers looked at the eating habits of more than 40,000 women, who didn’t have depression at the study’s start. They found that those who consumed

inflammatory foods regularly were more likely to suffer from depression by the end of the study. Soft Drinks: As you’re buzzing around from store to store, how will you replenish lost fluids? It’s all too easy to grab a cola on-thego, but the same study in Brain, Behavior and Immunity study indicated that soft drinks as part of a regular diet may also contribute to depression. So, if soda is your go-to drink when you’re thirsty, it may be time to rethink that strategy. Fast Food: People who eat fast food are 51 percent more likely to develop depression than those who don’t, according to a 2012 study in the journal Public Health Nutrition. This includes commercial baked goods, hamburgers, hot dogs and pizza, the researchers said. Keep in mind that eating a small portion of any one food is unlikely to raise depression risk, so don’t worry if you’ve just eaten your first heaping bowl of pasta in ages, or had the very occasional fast food burger. On the other hand, if this list describes three of your basic food groups, you may benefit from a drastic dietary adjustment. Healthy Bites appears weekly on LiveScience. Deborah Herlax Enos is a certified nutritionist and a health coach and weight loss expert in the Seattle area with more than 20 years of experience. Read more tips on her blog, Health in a Hurry!

Polls: Imran demands verification of thumb prints ISLAMABAD—Chairman, Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI), Imran Khan again demanded verification of thumb prints of four constituencies of Punjab. Talking to journalists during a news conference here on Tuesday, Khan said that seven months had passed and the process of thumbprint verification for votes in four constituencies had not been completed. “Independent judiciary and media should play role for democracy and correction of electoral system,” he stressed. He urged federal government to fulfil demand of verification in two constituencies of Lahore and

one from each Lodhran and Sialkot. “If rigging had not been done by ruling party then why government feared?” He asked. PTI chief disclosed that Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KP) government will install biometric system in order to make elections transparent, adding he demanded installation of biometric system in all other provinces of Pakistan. “Masses would have to fight more war for democracy,” Imran Khan said. He urged government to say no to American aid, adding he asked government to tell why unemployment and price hike is on

the verge despite US aid. Chairman PTI said that demonstrations would continue for transparent elections in the country. “Government was creating hurdles for the election tribunal,” Chairman PTI alleged. In response to US Defence Secretary Chuck Hagel warning to Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif about blockade of aid, Khan said there was a lesson which should be learned from this statement. Party President Makhdoom Javed Hashmi, Jahangir Tareen, Dr Shereein Mazari, Naeem-ul-Haq, Zahid Kazmi and others were present on the occasion.—Online

Twin cities in US embassy, IIUI workshop grip of infectious on gender based violence diseases I —US Embassy sexual harassment law passed because civil society groups SLAMABAD

ISLAMABAD—With the drop of mercury at new levels, the twin cities of Rawalpindi and Islamabad are in grip of infectious diseases including sore throat,cough, influenza and temperature. Local hospitals and clinics are seeing an increase in number of patients suffering with diseases related to dry weather. Most patients, especially children, have contracted viral diseases like influenza, bronchitis, typhoid, nasal allergy, asthma, soar throat, chest infection, phenomena, dry cough and scabies.—APP

in collaboration of International Islamic University Islamabad (IIUI) Tuesday held workship to help combat gender based violence at workplace during which leading corporations discussed their efforts to enforce laws protecting women from workplace sexual harassment. More than 200 academics, social activists, US alumni, IIUI students, and working women attended the workshop. Counselor for Public Affairs at US Embassy Islamabad, Angela Aggeler delivered opening remarks at the event, saying, “This anti-

worked together with members of Parliament who shared their vision of justice in the workplace. This type of collaboration is already benefiting women across Pakistan, as hundreds of women have taken legal action against sexual harassment in their workplace.” Aggeler concluded, “We need to work together the international community, the government, the private sector, civil society, and grassroots advocates to let Pakistanis know that gender-based violence is a serious human rights abuse.”—INP

ISLAMABAD: Federal Minister for Information & Broadcasting and National Heritage senator Pervaiz Rashid signing on the board during a function to mark Universal Human Rights Day organized by Ministry of Law, Justice and Human Rights at National Library.

Corruption is poison for development, economic stability RAWALPINDI—Corruption is poison for development and economic stability of any country as it not only increases crime rate but also damages the economy. Keeping in view these facts, the Punjab Government has launched various steps to control corruption especially in government departments. These views were expressed by speakers at a seminar held here at Potohar town Hall in connection with International Anti-Corruption Day. Additional District Collector Rawalpindi Tallat Mehmood Gondal, Director Anti-Corruption Establishment Rawalpindi Ch. Zulfiqar Ahmed, Senior Superintendent Police (SSP) Traffic Rawalpindi Syed Haseeb Shah and Prof. Muhammad Aslam Javaid addressed the seminar which was attended by teachers, students and people from different walks of life. Addressing the seminar, Additional District Collector Rawalpindi Tallat Mehmood Gondal said Punjab government has taken various steps to eliminate corruption from the province. Computerization of land record will end corruption particularly in matters relating to land registration and other matters. He said without participation of the public, corruption cannot be controlled. Director Anti-corruption Establishment Ch. Zulfiqar Ahmed said low literacy rate and political instability are the basic causes of corruption in the country. He said all the government departments should have done concerted efforts for the elimination of corruption and special awareness campaign against corruption should be launched. SSP Traffic Syed Haseeb Shah said the citizens should come forward and play a role for elimination of corruption.—APP

Launch of World Disasters Report 2013

Need for resilience of disaster prone communities stressed STAFF REPORTER ISLAMABAD—Speakers at the launching ceremony of World Disasters Report 2013 highlighted the use of technology in increasing resilience of disaster prone communities. The World Disasters Report was jointly launched by Pakistan RedCrescent Society (PRCS) and International Federation of the RedCross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC). Speaking on the occasion, PRCS Managing Body Member MianMuhammad Javed who was the chief guest at the ceremony said technology plays vital role in so many aspects of humanitarian work. He touched on various parts

of the report. PRCS supports the notion that the Government and other humanitarian agencies must fully commit to invest in developing the tools, policies and strategies to improve dialogue with disaster-affected communities. PRCS Secretary General Dr Mahboob Sardar in his welcome address also highlighted potential of technology to improve humanitarian operations. PRCS being the leading humanitarian organization of the country has already equipped itself with Mobile SMS Service, Radio Wireless Communication System, Email Service, SAP system and a user friendly

website. The other projects in pipeline are Video Conferencing and Disaster Data Bank.. IFRC Head of Pakistan Delegation Karen Bjornestad said this year’s report tells us that technology is proving to be a tool of empowerment and resilience for disaster prone communities. The report raises awareness of the importance of ethical application and use of technology in the humanitarian sector. Others who spoke on the occasion included Brig Kamran Zia, Member (Operations), National Disaster Management Authority, and Timo Pakkala, UN Resident and Humanitarian Coordinator.

ACP to organize hike at Margalla Hills

ISLAMABAD—Alpine Club of Pakistan (ACP) in collaboration with CDA, Lok Virsa, PNCU and IPPAC is organizing a Hike at Trail 5, Margalla Hills on Wednesday to observe ‘International Mountain Day’. According to a press release issued here, the opening session would start at 9:30 at Outdoor Education Center, Trail 5, Margalla Hills, Islamabad. A large number of people from all walks of life including students from various schools, colleges and universities are likely to participate in the event. Director General Environment, CDA would brief on Margalla Hills and environment, whereas President, Alpine Club of Pakistan would give briefing on International Mountaineering and role of Alpine Club of Pakistan in the promotion of mountaineering and healthy adventurous activities at National and International level. The closing ceremony PRCS Managing Committee member Mian Muhammad Javed hands over a copy of World would be held at 12:30 pm at disaster Report 2013 to NDMA Director Operations Kamran Zia while PRCS Secretary Outdoor Education Center.— General Dr Mahboob Sardar and IFRC HoD Karen looks on at the launching ceremony. APP

Arts and crafts exhibition highlights GB culture ISLAMABAD—Photo competi- dards in Higher Education the development of measures,

RAWALPINDI: A schoolboy waiting for his van after school time at roadside.

tion and arts and crafts exhibition to mark International Mountain Day (IMD) mesmerised the people with creative and objective streams at Lok Virsa here Tuesday. The two-day celebrations to celebrate IMD are organized by Capital Development Authority (CDA),Lok Virsa,UNESCO and Alpine Club. While addressing,the chief guest,Minister of State for Education,Trainings and stan-

,Muhammad Bligh-Ur-Rehman said mountains have a key role to play in providing renewable energy,especially through hydropower. The Minister said to achieve sustainable mountain development, it is essential the stakeholders are involved and awareness is raised about fragility and problems, and ways to address. “Government is increasing attention to disaster risk management in mountain areas through

approaches and policies for prevention, mitigation and rehabilitation of natural disasters and of public service”. Speaking on the occasion,Secretary General, Pakistan National Commission for UNESCO Amna Imran said “Our focus will be on celebrating how mountains are crucial in moving the world towards sustainable economic growth and on drawing attention to their generally sustainable and low emission production models”.

Member CDA Amir Ali said it is necessary to strengthen existing policies and establish new and innovative national, regional and international institutions and mechanisms based specifically mountain-related issues. All this must be backed up by a supportive and enabling environment for the promotion of high-quality products and services from mountain areas as a means of improving livelihoods and protecting mountain envi-

ronments, and facilitate mountain areas access to national and international markets. On the occasion,people from Gilgit-Baltistan welcomed guests and presented traditional song. An arts and crafts exhibition was also organized on the occasion,showcasing culture of GB and hilly areas. CDA has also organized hiking on Margalla trail on Wednesday to mark the celebrations of IMD.—APP

EU monitoring Pak int’l commitments: Wigemark Zohr

06:10 01:30 03:45 07:00

Brothers in Islam establish regular prayers and charity

December 12 Closing Plenary Session of SDPI’s 16th sustainable development conference will be held on Thursday at 3 p.m. The venue of the conference is Best Western Hotel Islamabad.

Air Commodore Nudrat Kazmi promoted as Air Vice Marshal I SLAMABAD—The Government of Pakistan has promoted Air Commodore Syed Nudrat Kazmi to the rank of Air Vice Marshal. Air Vice Marshal Syed Nudrat Kazmi was commissioned in the Engineering Branch of Pakistan Air Force in 1983. Currently, he is serving as Chief Project Director JF-17 Co-production project at Aircraft Manufacturing Factory, Kamra. He did Master’s in Aerospace Engineering from USA. He is also a graduate of National Defence University, Islamabad.. He is a recipient of Sitara-i-Imtiaz (Military).

Sh Rashid forms ‘real opposition parliamentary group’

Anusha visits IT Centre at NA LIAQAT TOOR ISLAMABAD—Minister of State

ISLAMABAD—Ambassador European Union Lars-Gunnar Wigemark has expressed high hopes for Pakistan and said circumstances on GSP Plus Package are conducive in European Parliament. Talking to Radio Pakistan in Islamabad he said voting on GSP Plus package will take place in European Parliament on Thursday, and EU is closely monitoring Pakistan’s international commitments, especially pertaining to human rights conventions. The ambassador said although some EU parliamentarians have reservations about Pakistan, however, if Pakistan has been granted with this status. Quality textile products will be available to Europeans on competitive rates. He said Pakistan will take enormous benefit on economic grounds once the package is approved by EU Parliament. To a question, Lars-Gunnar Wigemark ruled out notion that stoppage of NATO supplies might harm Pakistan’s position regarding GSP Plus in European ISLAMABAD: Christian children carrying placards during a rally to commemorate Nelson Mendela.—PO Photo by Sultan Bashir Parliament.—Online

Nayyer stresses unity of APA ISLAMABAD—Acting Presi- would evolve into a common mentary events in the world. lieve that this will happen eardent and President of the Asian Parliamentary Assembly Syed Nayyer Hussain Bokhari while addressing the participants of the APA has said that the agenda of Asian Parliamentary Assembly is based on cooperation and friendship which would further help in strengthening democratic values and traditions to promote regional and global peace. He said that the 6th APA plenary is monumental both in terms of quantitative and qualitative improvements in its history as it brought together an unprecedented display of Asian unity and wisdom under one roof besides touching upon important issues and areas critical to achieving Asian Century vision. “As the new elected President of APA and Chairman of the host parliament, I take this opportunity to extend, on behalf of APA Members and observers, our deep appreciation to His Excellency the Prime Minister of Pakistan for gracing this historic event with his presence”, the Acting President observed. He said that the presence of Prime Minister of Pakistan signifies Pakistan’s unfaltering commitment to fulfilling this agenda of change towards realizing the dream of the welfare and wellbeing of our peoples by joining hands across the borders. He said that the APA

ISLAMABAD—Awami Muslim League leader Sheikh Rashid has formed, what he called, ‘real opposition parliamentary group’ to raise voice for the rights of masses. Announcing this, Sheikh Rashid said he will head the group, while Jamshed Dasti will serve as Secretary General, adding that four more MNAs would soon join their group. “This group has been constituted because opposition is not playing its real role in the parliament, while ‘Haqqeeqi Group’ will be the voice poor people in parliament,” he told reporters Sheikh Rashid stated that this group has been formed in parliament because such man has been made the chairman of Public Accounts Committee (PAC) who was even not the member of committee before. AML chief further said, “Present opposition in the parliament is friendly opposition. He further said that his alliance with Pakistan Tehreek Insaf (PTI) would remain intact.—Online I S L A M A B A D — D e p u t y Speaker of Sri Lanka Parliament Chandima Weerakkody called on Speaker, National Assembly Sardar Ayaz Sadiq in Parliament House, on Tuesday. Various issues of mutual I SLAMABAD —Allama Iqbal interest and strengthening of Open University(AIOU) has bilateral parliamentary relarescheduled the exams of the tions came under discussion. Sardar Ayaz Sadiq praised papers which were postponed on November 22 in the active participation of Sri Rawalpindi City due to secu- Lankan Parliamentary delegation in Asian Parliamentary rity ground. According to Controller Assembly meeting. He said that Sri Lanka AIOU, exams of the postponed papers will now be held on Sat- could play an important role in bringing Asian Nations tourday December 14. Controller of Exams, AIOU gether for devising common Dr. Hamid Khan Niazi further strategy for problems comsaid that the centers and timing monly by Asian countries. Sri Lankan Deputy of these exams will remain unchanged, however revised roll Speaker said that his country number slips have been sent by also greatly values its friendpost to all the concerned stu- ship with Pakistan and desires to consolidate and deepen its dents.—Online

parliamentary platform of Asia, much like the European Parliament. He stated that this APA plenary also took into account the need for broadening APA’s scope and outreach beyond the Asian continent. As the new President of APA, Nayyer Bokhari said that he would try to translate the understanding and commitments at parliamentary level into actions and policies . Prime Minister Muhammad Nawaz Sharif while addressing the APA conference stressed greater connectivity among the Asian countries for their mutual development and prosperity. Addressing the sixth plenary of Asian Parliamentary Assembly(APA),the Prime Minister said the Asian countries had to shed the burden of the past and learn to look to the future. The APA hosted by Senate of Pakistan, was ended by nearly 300 delegates from 30 countries. Prime Minister Sharif said Pakistan had tried to turn a new page with all its neighbours and was prepared to look at the larger picture. He said the country had reached out to both Afghanistan and India. He said in an Asian century, an opportunity would be witnessed for South Asia to join the other Asian engines such as China and the ASEAN. He said Pakistan was proud to host the Asian Parliamentary Assembly, one of the most important parlia-

He mentioned that the Assembly was established in Islamabad in 2004 when the Association of Asian Parliaments for Peace decided to transform itself into the Asian Parliamentary Assembly. He expressed satisfaction over the commonalities in APA and Pakistan’s ideals concerning strengthening democracy, peace, development, regional cooperation, security and well-being of the people across the Asian continent. The Prime Minister said the theme for this Assembly was particularly relevant - Asian Century: Cooperation in Economy, Energy and the Environment. He said the theme had a particular resonance for Pakistan. He said Pakistan underwent a historic political transition earlier this year and one popularly elected government succeeded another popularly elected government in free, fair and transparent elections. He said the country’s parliament had emerged ever stronger on account of this transition and added that “We rejoice that this Parliament is today playing host to representatives of its sister parliaments from across Asia.” Nawaz Sharif said the parliament was now working to address the challenges confronting the country and had forged a national consensus on how best to address the threat of terrorism and to rejuvenate the economy. “I firmly believe in the Asian century. I also be-

Dy Speakers of Sri Lanka, Kuwait meet Ayaz Sadiq

AIOU reschedules exams

deep-rooted, all-weather friendship. He said that holding of Asian Parliamentary Assembly in Islamabad was a step forward in forging unity amongst Asian nations to tackle issues confronting stability and prosperity in the region. Later, Deputy Speaker of Kuwaiti National Assembly Mr. Mubarak Al-Khurainej met Sardar Ayaz Sadiq on sidelines of the Asian Parliamentary Assembly. The Speaker said that Pakistan and Kuwait were intertwined in bonds of religion, history and culture and these bonds could be further strengthened by parliamentary cooperation. He called for greater interaction between business communities of both the countries to tap the immense economic

potential especially in the trade and manufacturing sectors. Reciprocating good gesture of Speaker, the Kuwaiti Deputy Speaker said that Kuwait also considers Pakistan its closest friend who has always been a friend in need and stood by Kuwait in turbulent times. He agreed with Speaker and said that Kuwaiti Parliament would be delighted to enhance its relations with Pakistani Parliament so that understanding and cooperation between both the countries could be further pursued. He said that Kuwait strongly desires to see a prosperous, stable and economically vibrant Pakistan. He also extended invitation to the Speaker to visit Kuwait which he accepted.—INP

lier and last longer, if South Asia also makes its proper contribution to this development.” The Prime Minister appreciated the efforts of Senate of Pakistan, for managing the event in such a proficient manner. Chairman of the organizing Committee of Asian Parliamentary Assembly Senator Mushahid Hussain Sayed observed that the APA would promote regional and links among the Asian States and participation of 230 delegates from 31 countries reflects that Pakistan is a vibrant and dynamic democracy and desires to progress by enhancing its regional and economic cooperation. He said that Pakistan is an important player in the region and APA would help in enhancing regional linkages. Senator Mushahid further stated that the current government has the vision to enhance regional cooperation with all the Asian countries and the recent visit of the Prime Minister to various Asian nations is reflective of the fact and the APA is also based on the agenda of enhancing regional cooperation and mutual understanding on issues concerning the Asian region in the field of economy, energy and environment. He thanked the Prime Minister for gracing the occasion and also extended felicitations to Syed Nayyer Hussuin Bokhari charge of APA Presidency.

Pak cannot allow war crimes on its soil for dollars: PTI

for IT Ms.Anusha Rahman visited the high tech IT center established at National Assembly, the senior management of Ministry of IT was also accompanying her. While talking to the media she expressed that its one of the priorities of the government to implement E-office system in order to improve the efficiency and to ensure efficacy in the government institutions. The Minister further stated that E-office system would play a pivotal role in bringing transparency and will put a check on corrupt practices which are badly affecting the performance of government machinery. The Minister for IT also inspected the performance of the E-office installed at National Assembly and also viewed different E-files which were being maintained there. The Minister of State said that it is dire need of the time to move towards less paper environment, so that we could enhance the pace of working to get efficiency and remove impediments in the way of Smooth functioning of the institutions.

FCR prisoners be given medical care, allowed family visits: SC I SLAMABAD —The Supreme Court on Tuesday ruled that prisoners undergoing trial under the Frontier Crime Regulation (FCR) should be provided with adequate medical care and that they should be permitted to meet with their family members. The ruling read out by Justice Gulzar Ahmed was issued on a miscellaneous petition filed by Advocate Tariq Asad regarding the 11 Adiyala prisoners who had gone missing in 2010. Asad was representing the detainees. The Supreme Court had been hearing the case relating to these prisoners since 2010 and had reserved its ruling on Dec 3.

The case had begun over the disappearance of 11 prisoners who had mysteriously gone missing from outside Rawalpindi’s Adiyala jail on May 29, 2010 - the day they were acquitted of terrorism charges for their alleged involvement in the audacious Oct 2009 attacks on the GHQ and ISI’s Hamza Camp Rawalpindi. Four of them later died in unexplained circumstances. Abdus Saboor, 29, died on Jan 20, 2012, Mohammad Amir on Aug 15, 2011 and Tehseenullah and Said Arab respectively on Dec 17 and Dec 18, 2011.

The seven surviving prisoners were then detained in an internment centre set up under the Action in Aid of Civil Power Regulations 2011. They were later handed over to the political administration in the Federally Administered Tribal Areas (Fata) for trial under the Frontier Crime Regulation 1901. The seven prisoners had also been sentenced to jail terms of between five and 14 years - Syed Abdul Basit and Syed Abdul Majid for five years and Dr Niaz Ahmed, Mohammad Mazharul Haq, Mohammad Shafeeq, Shafeequr Rehman and Gulroze 14 years.—Online

Water supply scheme for villages inaugurated I SLAMABAD —Mr. Takashi Katae, Deputy Chief of Japanese Mission, Monday inaugurated two water supply schemes providing safe and clean water to Village Pepal Porian in Tehsil Murree, District Rawalpindi and Village Bissan Phatian Pona in District Abbottabad, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa. This project was funded by a grant of US $ 115,957 from the Government of Japan to the Society for Upgradation of Knowledge, Health and Infrastructure (SUKHI), an NGO actively working for rural development in Pakistan.

The inauguration ceremony was attended by Mr. Murtaza Javed Abbasi, Deputy Speaker, National Assembly of Pakistan, the staff of the NGO, members of the local community and other notables from the area. Before this intervention, the area which is situated on the boundary of Punjab and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa provinces was facing an acute shortage of water, particularly in the summer season. This caused an adverse effect on the community, especially women who had to fetch water from a long distance.

This project has provided more than 200 households with safe and clean water at their doorsteps which would be available all year round. At the inauguration ceremony, Mr. Katae stressed the importance of clean drinking water and basic sanitation services. He expressed his hope that this project would also contribute to other dimensions of development in the locality, such as education, health and economic growth, and in doing so would certainly strengthen the friendly relations between the people of Japan and Pakistan.—INP

ISLAMABAD—Central Information Secretary Pakistan Tehreeke-Insaf (PTI), Shireen Mazari has said that Pakistan cannot allow war crimes and killings by a foreign power on its soil for dollars. As per issued press statement, Shireen Mazari said “US Secretary of Defence Hagel’s threats, given to Pakistan on Pakistani soil, about aid stoppage in case of NATO supply route through Torkham remains blocked, reflected the command that US continues to issue to Pakistan.” She said Hagel totally ignored the main issue of drones which is the cause of the NATO supply route blockage in Khyber Pukhtunkhwa (KPK) by PTI and its allies. As for the threat of stopping US military assistance, she said “Hagel seemed unaware of the fact that Pakistan’s strategic weapons, barring the F16s, are ISLAMABAD: Speaker National Assembly Sardar Ayaz Sadiq presenting the photo album not US made or US-depen- to Chairman Saudi Arabia’s Shura Council, Dr. Abdullah bin Mohammed bin Ibrahim AlShiekh, of his visit at Parliament House. dent.”—Online

Mountain Day observed at Lok Virsa ISLAMABAD —A number of UNESCO. colourful programmes marking Mountain Day were organized here at Pakistan National Museum of Ethnology, popularly known as Heritage Museum at Lok Virsa complex, Shakarparian. The event was organized by Lok Virsa, Directorate of Sports & Culture of the Capital Development Authority (CDA), Alpine Club and Pakistan National Commission for

The opening ceremony was graced by Engr. Muhammad Baligh-ur-Rehman, Minister of State for Education, Trainings and Standards in Higher Education as chief guest. Mrs. Shahera Shahid, Executive Director of Lok Virsa, Mr. Aamir Ali Ahmed, Member of CDA, Asif Javed Shahjahan, Director General of Culture & Sports of CDA and Ms. Amna Imran, Secretary General of Pakistan National

Commission for UNESCO were also present on the occasion. In his inaugural address, the Minister of State highlighted importance of the day for Pakistan and appreciated the efforts and contribution of Lok Virsa, CDA and other partner organizations for celebrating the day in such a professional and effective way. According to the programme schedule, the event would continue till 11 Decem-

ber 2013. Activities held on the first day included a seminar on “Mountains - Key to a Sustainable Future”, a special exhibition featuring master artisans from mountainous parts in the field of weaving, embroidery, papier mache, wax printing and stone carving as well as folkloric performances where a group of folk singers and musicians from Gilgit-Baltistan performed live before the audience. Speakers who read papers

during the seminar were Sajjad Ali, Munir Ahmed, Jahanzeb Murad, Arif Hussain and Ansar Ahmed. Documentaries depicting on culture and mountains were also screened at the occasion. A large number of people, specially students and youth attended the event and enjoyed the programmes presented on the occasion. The United Nations (UN) International Mountain Day is

an occasion to help raise awareness of the people who live in mountainous regions and the role that these regions play in providing food, water and recreation. It is observed on December 11 each year. Mountains are crucial to life. Whether we live at sea level or the highest elevations, we are connected to mountains and affected by them in more ways than we can imagine. Mountains provide most of the

world’s freshwater, harbor a rich variety of plants and animals, and are home to one in ten people. Yet, each day, environmental degradation, the consequences of climate change, exploitative mining, armed conflict, poverty and hunger threaten the extraordinary web of life that the mountains support. This year, the theme for IMD is “Mountains - Key to a

Sustainable Future”, the focus is on celebrating how mountains are crucial in moving the world towards sustainable economic growth in the context of poverty eradication and on drawing attention to their generally sustainable. The second day (11 December) activities include hiking at trail-05, artisans-at-work exhibition and cultural performances by folk artists and musicians.—Online

Anti-sniping devices installed on Indo-Pak border SRINAGAR—Paramilitary BSF

Protests in Indian occupied Kashmir against the continued human rights violations by Indian troops.

Talking to India, Pakistan is no sin: Ghani

Unsolved Kashmir, Palestine cause Asian instability: Attique

SRINAGAR—Senior leader of

Wants dispute solution summit

Mirwaiz-led Hurriyat Conference Prof Abdul Gani Bhat has said the amalgam will not shy away from holding talks with India or Pakistan over Kashmir as there was no harm in doing so. “Our intentions are clean and so is our image. When we went to Pakistan earlier this year, we talked to leaders there. We went to Pakistan after thorough consultations with the cross section of Kashmir society,” he said, addressing a seminar at the Hurriyat headquarters here. “I fail to understand why some people misunderstand us and draw their own conclusions when Hurriyat talks to India or Pakistan. We will talk with our heads high as talking is no sin. “Many efforts were made to break the Hurriyat. But they failed and will continue to fail because Hurriyat is a pious platform which believes in keeping the flock together.” He said the Hurriyat will continue to change its policies and strategies as and when time demands. Prof Bhat said the Hurriyat is “based on faith, discipline and unity.” “We want to convey to New Delhi that more they beat us the more our resolve to achieve the goal would be strengthened,” he said. Prof Bhat said people have chosen their leader in the form of Mirwaiz Umar Farooq. “There is no need to choose another one. If we will indulge in selecting leaders, we will land nowhere,” he said. “The only thing is the he needs to lead us in the right direction. For that, consultations are a must. In Hurriyat, there is no hegemony as all are equal.”—NNI

HAMEED SHAHEEN ISLAMABAD—Sardar Attique Ahmed Khan, ex-Premier of Azad Jammu and Kashmir/ President Muslim Conference has pointed out to the 57-State OIC forum that the long-standing unsolved Kashmir and Palestine disputes are the two major causes of Asian instability. Both issues are nuclear flashpoint, needing collective persuasion for early settlement. He was addressing Tuesday the 40th session of OIC Foreign Ministers Contact Group on Kashmir in Conakry, Guinea. Sardar Attique Khan, Mirwaiz Umar Farooq, Syed Ali Gilani and Asiya Anderabi were invited as true representatives of Kashmir to present the latest situation on the issue. But India denied travel documents to IHK Kashmiri leaders of APHC, an act denounced by the OIC Kashmir Contact Group as violation of relevant UN resolutions. Mr Ghulam Mohammad Saffi another Kashmiri leader also spoke on the occasion. Paying tributes to the OIC forum for its Kashmir and Palestine solution efforts, Sardar Attique Ahmed Khan said: The collective wisdom of the OIC leaders has been effective in re-

sponding to the emergencies and expediencies attached to these disputes on Asian continent. But it is also a fact that their continued unsolved status constitutes a potential threat to Asian peace and security. Kashmir disputes is hanging nuclear fire among three immediate nukes states Pakistan, China and India. It is imperative that an Asian Summit should be held by the OIC to thrash out initiatives for the settlement of such serious dispute. At the outset he condoled the death of Nelson Mandella saying the late leader has left being lasting imprints of his personality and principles. He cautioned that OIC needs to be more watchful that in the running process of globalization the issues old Kashmir and Palestine are not eroded. Presenting the statistics of IHK widows, orphans, thousands of missing Kashmiris, he sought the assistance of OIC for their rehabilitation/welfare. He condemned the denial of travel documents to Mirwaiz, Ali Gilani and Asiya.”India could have earned goodwill of OIC had she allowed these leaders to participate in OIC Conakry session, he commented.

He welcomed the call of Prime Minister Mohammad Nawaz Sharif to India to have table talks with Pakistan and Kashmiris. Unless Kashmir tangle is solved, how can Kashmiris stay in caged condition forever, he questioned New Delhi. He regretted that whenever Pakistan tries to initiate a bilateral dialogue India rushes to throw spanner in sincere efforts. The latest hurdle is their planning to build a divisive wall from Jammu to Kathua via Samba that would uproot human population of 122 villages affecting their homes and farming fields. He strongly advocated Kashmir solution search via dialogue. Kashmiris would like to become peace bridge between Pakistan and India. Only that solution would be workable that serves the aspirations of Kashmiris. He said there can be no other best way out than the UN roadmap on Kashmir. He paid glorious tributes to the Secretary General of OIC Me Ekmeleddin Ihsanoglu for his successful efforts in establishing institutional liaison of OIC with other world bodies including UNO.

Cold wave further grips occupied Kashmir SRINAGAR—There was no respite from dry weather conditions as cold wave further tightened its grip in occupied Kashmir with the night temperatures in the valley remaining several degrees below the freezing point, local media reported on Tuesday. Srinagar, the summer capital of Indian held Jammu and Kashmir, recorded a drop of over one degree in the night temperature with the mercury settling at a low of minus 2.1 degrees Celsius as compared to the previous night’s minus 0.8 degrees Celsius, a MeT Department official said. He said the minimum in Srinagar was over a degree below the normal for this part of the season. The official said the night temperature in the tourist resort of Pahalgam also decreased by over a degree to settle at a low of minus 4.0 degrees Celsius from the previous night’s low of 2.8 degree Celsius. The mercury in the famous ski-resort of Gulmarg settled at a low of minus 3.4 degree Celsius, a drop of a degree from minus 2.4 degrees Celsius the previous night, the official said. He said Qazigund, the gateway town to Kashmir, recorded a minimum of minus 2.4 degrees Celsius as compared to the previous night’s minus 1.4 degrees Celsius. Kupwara town in north Kashmir recorded a minimum of minus two degrees Celsius as against minus 1.9 degrees Celsius the previous night, while Kokernag in south recorded a low of 0.3 degree Celsius as against the previous night’s 1.1 degrees Celsius, he said.—Online

ISLAMABAD: AJK President Sardar Muhammad Yaqoob Khan meeting with Prime Minister Chaudhry Abdul Majeed.

Several JKPFL activists arrested during protest

Sheep farming catching young entrepreneurs

SRINAGAR —Breaking away sheep and so far I am doing SRINAGAR —Police arrested from traditional set of doing good as there is huge demand several activists of Jammu and Kashmir Peoples Freedom League during their protest demonstration in Srinagar on the World Human Rights Day, today. The police used brute force and fired tear-gas on the peaceful protesters, who were raising anti-India and pro-civil rights slogans. The protesters led by JKPFL Chief Organiser Muhammad Altaf Khan on the occasion called upon the United Nations to send a delegation of Human Rights Council to take a stock of the human rights situation in the occupied territory. They said that India flouting all covenants and conventions on human rights was engaged in suppressing the Kashmiris’ freedom struggle through military might. The detainees included Imtiaz Ahmad Shah, Arshad Aziz, Gulzar Ahmad Khanday, Shoukat Ahmad, Pir Irfan, Khursheed Ahmad, Riaz Ahmad, Muhammad Zaheer, Muhammad Jahangir and Muhammad Shahid.—KMS

business, young entrepreneurs are choosing new line of activities. Sheep farming is one such activity that is fast catching attention. With government providing incentives besides logistic support and financial assistance, large number of youth have set up sheep farms here which according them will bridge gap between demand and supply of mutton in the Valley. Faisal Wani is one example among many youth who have established sheep farm and is a success story. Wani left his lucrative job in Dubai and back home worked on an innovative idea. In 2011 he established a sheep farm in Budgam district with a concept which at that time everyone doubted to be successful. “I started initially with 25 ewes and 1 ram. As an owner of the farm I had to work hard as the sheep can catch diseases very quickly and one has to be very cautious in handling them. After two years of being in the business I have around 500

of mutton in the Valley,” Wani said. But Wani cautions budding entrepreneurs who plan to setup sheep farms that before starting, they should take advice from experts. “It is not an easy line to choose as there are many drawbacks like winter conditions are very difficult for sheep. So one has to be patient, hardworking and must have proper heating facilities in place,” he adds. Wani who has done his initial schooling from the valley and later his Master in Business Administration from Dubai says that this line of activity – sheep farming has a huge potential and can provide livelihood to large number of unemployed youth. Similarly, Tabish Salim - an undergraduate student has also started sheep farm in Islamabad area. He says that though it is his first year in business. “But I am hopeful that it will be a successful venture as there is huge potential in this line because of the demand of mutton in market.”—NNI

has installed anti-sniping devices on Indo-Pak border to prevent sniper bullet injuries. A top BSF official said the move came up in the wake of alleged increased infiltration attempts along the border and Line of Control (LoC) in JK in recent months. “The border area already has in place a strong surveillance mechanism, including three-tier fencing, flood-lighting, sensors, thermal imagers and manual patrolling,” he added. The official said the installation of anti-sniper devices was under consideration since October this year. “One of our soldiers was injured when Pakistani troops fired upon us in Samba district with sniper rifles. The incident took place at Katav Border Out Post (BoP) along the International Border (IB) in Samba,” he claimed. The 41-metre wide and 10metre high embankment is being raised from Akhnoor Sector to Kathua to secure troops, living along the IB, from sniper firing from the Pakistani side and they can freely move behind it, he claimed. “This is one of the measures we have undertaken to prevent BSF personnel to become targets of any firing by snipers across the border,” the official said adding that the measures have been taken in view of the several incidents of sniping from the Pakistani side in which a BSF personnel was killed and three others injured in the past few months. Earlier, BSF installed highresolution cameras to monitor the border.—NNI

Tramboo denounces India’s anti-people policies SRINAGAR—The Chairman of International Council for Human Rights, Barrister Abdul Majeed Tramboo has said that time has come when India should shun its policy of obduracy and demonstrate courage to resolve the Kashmir dispute through talks between Pakistan, India and the people of Kashmir. Barrister Abdul Majeed Tramboo addressing a meeting organised by the Jammu and Kashmir Liberation Front-R in Srinagar over telephone said that New Delhi was playing havoc with the lives of innocent people of Kashmir to perpetuate its occupation over Jammu and Kashmir. He deplored that efforts were being made to suppress the Kashmiris’ peaceful struggle for right to self-determination by the dint of gun, said a press release issued by the JKLF-R. However, he maintained that the Kashmiris’ sentiments for freedom could not be suppressed through use of brute force and suggested the Kashmir dispute could be resolved through dialogue and consultations. The meeting was also addressed by JKLF-R Chairman, Farooq Ahmad Dar and others.—KMS

Valley reels under darkness, power Minster blames people S R I N A G A R —Stating that

Indian Kashmir policy proved disastrous: Geelani I SLAMABAD —In occupied tions were no more a democratic the people through their peaceKashmir, the veteran Hurriyet, leader Syed Ali Geelani has said India’s policy of coercion and suppression has proved disastrous in the past and so it will be in future as well. Responding to re-imposition of restrictions on him, the veteran leader in a statement said that successful public rallies had cautioned India and it placed restrictions on him, which had put a question mark on the credibility of the upcoming elections, KMS reported. Syed Ali Geelani said, “Their decision for my re-detention has created doubts about the credibility for up-coming elections,” and added that it had confirmed his stand that these elec-

process instead manipulated and designed by forces wherein candidates were not elected but it was a selection processes. While commenting over the denial of political space, Syed Ali Geelani termed it as unfortunate and asked Indian authorities to shun their stubborn and obstinate policy and fulfil their commitment with people of Kashmir. Syed Ali Geelani while lashing out at the authorities warned that their attitude would prove detrimental for authorities and their stooges. He said that India since 1947 has experienced in vain different ways and means to suppress the peaceful movement through state power and coercion. “Till 1987

Mirwaiz counts reasons for bloodshed ISLAMABAD—Chairman of All will continue to happen in KashParties Hurriyet Conference, Mirwaiz Umar Farooq has said that militarization, special powers to Indian armed forces and imposition of black laws are the main cause of bloodshed and violations of human rights in the territory. The APHC chairman inaugurating a photo- exhibition at a local hotel in Srinagar organised by the Human Right Cell expressed his regret over the silence of international community on human rights’ violations in Indian Held Kashmir. The photo exhibition highlighted the pain and agony of Kashmiri people living their life under occupation. Mirwaiz Umar Farooq said the Kashmiris are the victim of the worst kind of state terrorism under which innocent people have been killed, their houses set ablaze, families torn apart due to enforced disappearances, and thousands brutally left as orphans and widows. APHC chairman said unless demilitarization and scrapping of black laws, these violations


On this occasion, a feature film made by the APHC Human Right Cell depicting freedom struggle and human rights’ violations was shown to hundreds of participants, which included kins of martyrs and disappeared persons. The Mirwaiz said this film is an eye opener depicting the sufferings of Kashmiri people and violations that are taking place in this region. APHC chairman regretted that so many inquiry commissions have been set up by the authorities to investigate human rights violations but not a single perpetrator has been punished. Thus proving these enquires to be a farce and mere eyewash. Prominent Hurriyet leaders including Agha Syed Hassan AlMoosvi, Advocate Abdul Majid Banday, Syed Saleem Gilani, Advocate Shahidul Islam, Engineer Hilal Ahmad War, Javaid Ahmad Mir, Zafar Akbar Butt and others also participated in the exhibition.—APP

Centre not to conspire against AJK govt ISLAMABAD—Federal Minister that with the coming of PML (N) for Kashmir Affairs & GilgitBaltistan Chaudhary Muhammad Barjees Tahir has said that federal government does not want to conspire against AJK Government but ‘no confidence motion’ is constitutional right of opposition. He said that Prime Minister of Pakistan Mian Muhammad Nawaz Shrif is seriously concerned about unbridled corruption in Azad Jammu & Kashmir. He said this while talking to Raja Farooq Haider, President PML (N) Azad Jammu & Kashmir. A delegation of PML (N) led by Raja Farooq Haider called on Federal Minister for Kashmir Affairs & Gilgit-Baltistan in his office on Tuesday. Raja Farooq Haider said

Government there was a substantial decline in corruption all over the country and that corruption index improved considerably on international level but people of Azad Jammu & Kashmir were still deprived of fruits of good governance. There is no merit in State of Azad Jammu & Kashmir. He said that zero tolerance for corruption is the hall mark of PML (N) Government. Ch Muhammad Barjees Tahir said that Prime Minister Muhammad Nawaz Sharif has shown deep concern over rise of corruption in Azad Jammu & Kashmir during recent his visit. Scores of warnings have been issued to AJK Government in this regard, Barjees added.— APP

ful efforts strived for right to self determination, however after the negative response, the youth opted for armed struggle,” he added. Syed Ali Geelani said that even after offering unprecedented sacrifices the people took to streets in 2008, 2009 and 2010 and again expressed their sentiments for freedom. The veteran leader reiterated to follow the mission with same spirit peacefully. He, however, said that India’s policymakers had not learned any lessons from their mistakes and while dealing with Kashmir they were following the same policy. “It will prove counterproductive,” he added.—APP

Indian police arrest Farida Behanji SRINAGAR—The authorities arrested Jammu and Kashmir Mass Movement, Chairperson Farida Behanji along with a dozen of activists at Press Colony when she was leading a protest demonstration on the eve of the International Human Rights Day, today.The Mass Movement Chairperson and other detainees have been lodged at kothi Bagh Police Station in Srinagar. On the other hand, the authorities did not allow the veteran Hurriyet leader, Syed Ali Gilani to address a press conference at his residence in Srinagar, today. Police laid siege around the house of the veteran leader and did not allow anyone to enter the residence. A statement issued by the forum patronised by Syed Ali Gilani denounced the police action. The speakers on the occasion urged the world community to play its role for an end to the rights abuses by the Indian forces in the territory.— KMS

Indian troops killed 93,978 Kashmiris ISLAMABAD—Indian troops in their unabated acts of state terrorism martyred 93,978 innocent Kashmiris, including 7,014 in custody since January 1989 till date. A report released by the Research Section of Kashmir Media Service on the occasion of the World Human Rights Day, revealed that these killings rendered 22,776 women widowed and 107,466 children orphaned. The report said that the troops molested or disgraced 10,084 women and damaged 105,992 structures. It maintained that the Indian troops and police subjected over 8,000 people to custodial disappearance during the last 24 years.—APP

Indian decision to build a wall along LoC violation of UN resolutions, KSC BRUSSELS—Pakistan must take due cognizance of Indian decision to build a wall along the Line of Control (LoC) and raise this issue at diplomatic fronts, including the United Nations Security Council as any such move clearly tantamounts to virtual vivisection of the erstwhile state of Jammu and Kashmir. This was stated by the Executive Director of Kashmiri Scandinavian Council (KSC) Sardar Ali Shahnawaz Khan while talking from Oslo, the

capital of Norway. He reminded that the 10 meters high wall has no parallel in history and is obviously designed to divide the people and state of Jammu and Kashmir on permanent basis. Starting from the Working boundary in Jammu-Sialkot sector, India will construct 197 Km long wall in phase-I before extending it all over the LoC, he reminded. He further said that LoC is not an international border but just a cease fire lined drawn by

the UN under provisional arrangements and hence Inida should not be allowed to change the status of it unilaterally. Due to the lenient policy of Musharraf-government in past, India was able to fence the LoC. Ali Shahnawaz observed that India has deliberately shown a cold shoulder to Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif who, for good neighbourly relations, has gone to the extent of proposing free trade and removal of visa restrictions between two sides.—NNI

people are responsible for the power mess in Kashmir, Minister for Power and Information has said that until and unless people desist from power thefts, the electricity scenario of the valley will not get better. He also said that the department will soon start a massive drive against the power thefts. “The total capacity of the receiving stations within the Kashmir division is about 900 to 1000 MW and the department provides the same but unfortunately people do not desist from theft and hooking which is the main hurdle in smooth supply of electricity,” Minister for Power and Information, Vikar Rasool said in an interview with the KNS. “We have decided to start massive drive against those who are involved in hooking and power theft as government is committed to make every endeavor to improve power scenario in the valley,” he added. Further explaining the power crises he said, “It is easy to blame the Department for everything but people should realize that they use more electricity than required and waste the power unneces- MUZAFFARABAD: Member AJK Legislative Assembly and Coordinator Prime Minister Youth Loan Scheme Barrister Iftikhar Gillani listening to people’s problems during visit to sarily.—KNS National Bank Main Branch.

HC interested in direct PIA link with Australia Amanullah Khan KARACHI—Peter Heyward, High Commissioner Australia has showed keen interest in expansion of PIA and particularly having direct air link with Australia. The Australian High Commissioner offered his cooperation and support for PIA. It may be noted that Australian delegation led by High Commissioner Mr. Peter Heyward called on Managing Director PIA Mr Muhammad Junaid Yunus in Head Office. Australian High Commission First Secretary Ms.Melissa Kelly and Business Development Manager for South Pakistan Mr Tahir Mahmood were in the delegation. Deputy Managing Director Engineering PIA Air Vice Marshall Qasim Masood Khan was also present during the meeting. The participants of meeting discussed matters of mutual interest and of bilateral cooperation.

IFC-LCCI discuss policy barriers

No corruption case registered during 6 months STAFF REPORTER

practices no corruption case was reported during the six months of the present government. He was addressing the 16th Sustainable Development Policy Institute (SDPI) Conference here at a local hotel today.

The minister said that government was also determined to eradicate the menace of corruption from the country for sustainable development and socio- economic uplift of the country. He said that government,

under its next five-year development plan and visionI SLAMABAD —Minister for 2025 introduced seven point’s agenda to turn Planing and Development, around the national Professor Ahsan Iqbal said economy and put it on fast on Tuesday that due to track growth by harnessing transparent fiscal policies the available resources. The and zero tolerance for malgovernment, he said was focusing on energy security, human social capital, creating indigenous resources besides modernizing infrastructure for economic development of the country. Ahsan Iqbal said that special attention was paid to small and medium enterprises as it works as engine of growth adding that transaction from low quality to high quality products and further improving the governance was the main thrust. He further said that to strengthen the industrial sector of the country and to enhance quality as well as productivity of the sector, government has decided to celebrate 2014 Federal Minister for Planning and Development Ahsan Iqbal speaks during SDPI’s as a year of “Quality and Sixteenth Sustainable Development Conference.—PO photo by Sultan Bashir Productivity”.

United Mobile announces winners STAFF REPORTER

Salim Ahmed LAHORE—International Finance Corporation (IFC) and the Lahore Chamber of Commerce and Industry (LCCI) on Tuesday discussed threadbare regulatory and policy barriers to captive power generation and private-to-private models of electricity to reduce the current power deficit. LCCI former President Mian Anjum Nisar, LCCI Executive Committee Member Chaudhry Muhammad Aslam and Akber Sheikh held talks with the International Finance Corporation (IFC) team comprising Saima Zuberi, Ricardo Arias, Aijaz Ahmad, Affifa Raihana, Dalia Sakr, Etienne Rafi.

K ARACHI —United Mobile

Delays in kinnow consignments assailed

ISLAMABAD—Ambassador of

has announced the winner of a brand new Suzuki Heavy Bike ‘Inazuma’. The winner Mr. Zohaib from Karachi was among the thousands of VOICE mobile customers that participated in the launch ceremony of the Voice Series – Xtra and Xtreme. United Mobile launched the latest series of Xtreme smart phones and Xtra feature phones in major cities of Pakistan including Karachi, Islamabad and Lahore. These events were

held at various shopping malls, cinemas, universities and other recreational areas allowing customers to experience the latest offerings of the VOICE series and the opportunity to win various gifts and prizes including the bumper prize which was the Suzuki Heavy Bike ‘Inazuma’. The winner of the bumper prize was caught in the moment, expressing great joy upon receiving the keys of the brand new heavy bike from the senior management of United Mobile. After the successful

launch of the Xtra and Xtreme mobile phones series, the spokesperson for VOICE shared future plans for introducing innovative mobile phones for the Pakistani consumers, with the continued promise to provide customer service of the highest quality. “We are in process of getting some exciting and innovative products in the market and the success of the Xtra and Xtreme series is surely just the beginning,” said Mr. Ejaz Hassan, Marketing Director at United Mobile.

Korean inventors keen to invest in Pakistan

South Korea to Pakistan Song Jong-hawan said Korean comStaff Reporter panies are showing great inKARACHI—While acknowl- terest for investment in energy sector to help Pakistan. Song edging commendable efforts by the Government Jong-hawan expressed these views during his meeting with in withdrawal of ban on Minister of State for Water and Kinnow imposed by Power Ch. Abid Sher Ali here Russian, anticipated to on Tuesday. The Minister fetch huge foreign excommended the deep ties bechange for the crippled tween Pakistan and Korea in economy, issuance of Phyto-sanitary certificates various fields. He said that it is only from Bhalwal coupled the vision of present government to strengthen relation Newly elected President FPCCI Zakria Usman, VP Munawar with acute shortage of Mughal and others with Tariq Sayeed and SM Muneer. experienced inspecting staff with Korea.—Online causing in-ordinate delays in inspection of Kinnow containers has been viewed with serious concern, stated by Mr. Abdul Wahid, former chairman and lion, $1297.22 million, inflow of remittances from AMANULLAH KHAN spokesman of All Pakistan $1025.87 million, $962.76 mil- Saudi Arabia, UAE, USA, Fruit & Vegetable Exporters K ARACHI —Overseas Paki- lion, $732.64 million and UK, other GCC countries (in, Importers & Merchant stani workers remitted an $179.14 million respectively cluding Bahrain, Kuwait, Association (PFVA) during amount of $6406.73 million in as compared with the inflow Qatar and Oman), and EU a meeting of leading the first five months (July – of $1609.45 million, $1240.62 countries amounted to exporters of the AssociaNovember) of the current fis- million, $993.57 million, $334.10 million, $236.29 miltion. cal year 2013-14 (FY14), $845.86 million, $676.69 mil- lion, $175.82 million, $155.13 showing a growth of 7.10 lion and $161.16 million re- million, $128.18 million and percent when compared with spectively in July- Novem- $29.84 million respectively as compared with the inflow of $5982.04 million received ber FY13. Remittances received $300.84 million, $193.79 milduring the same period of last fiscal year (July- November from Norway, Switzerland, lion, $152.29 million, $148.53 Australia, Canada, Japan million, $117.18 million and “We generate fears FY13). The inflow of remit- and other countries during $26.63 million respectively in while we sit. We tances in July- November the first five months of cur- November, 2012. overcome them by Remittances received FY14 from Saudi Arabia, rent fiscal year amounted to action. Fear is UAE, USA, UK, other GCC $415.37 million as against from Norway, Switzerland, nature’s way of countries (including $454.69 million received in Australia, Canada, Japan and warning us to get Bahrain, Kuwait, Qatar and the first five months of last other countries during Nobusy.” vember 2013 amounted to Oman), and EU countries fiscal year. —Dr. Henry Link In November 2013, the $71.76 million amounted to $1793.73 mil-

$6.4b remitted in first 5 months

APCNGA meeting over disconnection STAFF REPORTER I SLAMABAD—The All Pakistan CNG Association (APCNGA) on Tuesday summoned emergency meeting of office bearers of the associations, CNG operators and transporters from all across the Pakistan to chalk out a strategy to get supply of natural gas to CNG outlets restored. The step has been taken in the back drop of the sudden decision by the SNGPL to discontinue supply to CNG sector for indefinite period, said a statement issued here today. Ghiyas Abdullah Paracha, Chairman Supreme Council APCNGA said that closure of the CNG sector in the name of gas load management is sheer violation of the constitution. He said that CNG sector is being targeted intentionally which will trigger inflation, unemployment, and chaos. The decision of the Supreme Court has proved injustice meted out to the CNG sector, he said, adding that the unilateral decision is based on mala fide intentions of the gas distribution company. Bureaucracy is painting a wrong picture of the situation as gas is not as scarce in the country as claimed, said Paracha. He said that domestic consumers continue to get low pressure despite closure of the CNG which indicates that gas in being diverted to an influential sector in a secret manner. We will never allow gas officials to push millions to unemployment, deprive majority of country’s population of affordable transportation and sink Rs 450 billion investments in the CNG sector over their lame excuses, he said. The leader of the CNG sector said that closure of CNG will trigger demand for imported fuel which will drain dwindling forex reserves as no country is willing to provide oil to Pakistan on credit. The Planning Commission in its latest report has opposed total closure of the CNG sector terming it against the national interests, he informed.

Samsung introduces solid state drive STAFF REPORTER L AHORE —Samsung Electronics has announced that it launches 840 EVO mSATA (mini-Serial ATA) Solid State Drive (SSD) line-up, including the industry’s first 1 terabyte (TB) mSATA SSD this month. The Samsung 840 EVO mSATA SSD is an extension of the 840 EVO line-up which was introduced in July at Samsung SSD Global Summit. The new SSD features the compact mSATA form factor which is approximately a quarter size of a 2.5-inch SSD, and offers the same level of high density and high performance. “With the new mSATA SSD line-up offering up to 1TB of memory and an optimized software tool, we expect that consumers can enjoy high storage volume and performance on ultra-slim notebooks besides desktop PCs,” said Unsoo Kim, senior vice president, memory brand product marketing, Samsung Electronics. “We will continue to bring leading-edge SSD products and software solutions with improved quality and reliability, while working on offering higher consumer satisfaction.

Askari Bank launches new call centre STAFF REPORTER I SLAMABAD —Askari Bank Limited has launched its new call center having state of the art technology to better serve

more making it convenient for the customers to perform their banking transactions. The call center was inaugurated by Chairman Board of Directors, Askari Bank Limited,

Chairman Board of Directors Askari Bank Limited, Lt. General (Retd) Muhammad Mustafa Khan, inaugurating call centre. its customers. Through Askaricall center, customers can now perform host of financial transactions including utility bill payments, credit card payments, mobile top-up, transfer funds (within Askari bank / interbank) and much

Lt. General (Retd) Muhammad Mustafa Khan, HI (M). Speaking on the occasion, he said, “In this competitive environment, customer convenience and technology driven products& services are the benchmark for success.”

Warid Telecom announces revamp of its customer services helpline STAFF REPORTER KARACHI—Making the customer experience delightful through simplicity, this revamp allows users to get control of advanced self-service options including detailed information on all the offers, tariffs, products and services with activation and deactivations through self-service IVR. Transforming brand promises into operational reality, the company took number of incredible initiatives to further enhance the Customer Experience. Warid Contact Center achieved and maintained the highest service level in the last two years while in 12 of the nationwide Warid Experience Centers (Walk-In Business Centers) it maintains the average wait time of only

39 seconds and serving time of 4:52 minutes which is even lesser than 5 minutes. Launched back in 2005, Warid gave the entire community slogans like ‘Be Heard’ and ‘We Care’. Over the years, it earned the perception of being the most caring service provider, having finest network quality, crystal clear voice and transparency. The brand has been also declared the most devoted social/Facebook Brand for last three consecutive months with average response time improved from 564 minutes to 194 minutes. The company has set the highest standards of service excellence and is enjoying incredible brand reputation and exceptionally positive

customer loyalty trends. The helpline, IVR revamp is a great initiative as there are some additional services Warid has introduced which are offered for the first time in Pakistan by any operator. Now its postpaid customers can get complete personal account information from Help Line including billing details, free minutes Information, payment history, bill payment, voice offer free minutes Information and GPRS/SMS usage details. Not only these customers can also avail unique services from help line & promotional IVR, such as info on Valued Added Services activations/deactivations, F&F list retrieval and PUK code confirmation.

Zong Contact Centre inaugurated try, Ms. Rehman said, “We services to Pakistanis appreciate any endeavor that through its innovative initiaI S L A M A B A D —Zong has adds value to the IT & tives and driving the induslaunched its state-of-the-art Telecom industry of Paki- try wide growth. With such Contact Centre in Chak Shehzad Islamabad. Pakistan’s largest cloud computing based contact center was inaugurated by Minister for Information Technology Ms. Anusha Rehman. Chariman PTA, Dr. Ismail Shah, Secretary IT, Akhlaq Tarar and other dignitaries also graced the occasion. With the launch of this new Contact Centre, Zong has taken another giant leap to provide best in class support services to its customers and facilitate them with their queries round the clock. The Contact Centre will allow Zong to get closer to the consumer pulse and address their needs more promptly. Additionally, the Mr Fan Yunjun CEO Zong with Ms Anusha Rehman MinContact Centre will also cre- ister for IT Pakistan at the ribbon cutting ceremony of ate more job opportunities in Pakistan’s largest cloud based contact center. Pakistan hence making a positive contribution to the stan. As the fastest growing focused initiatives, Zong has cellular network of the coun- undoubtedly become a economy. Commenting on Zong’s try, Zong is playing a key role benchmark for other Pakicontribution to the IT indus- in providing better telecom stani telecom operators.”


Mobile banking creates operational risks: SBP Governor AMANULLAH KHAN KARACHI—Mobile banking creates a heightened level of potential operations risk. Ashraf Mehmood Wathra, Deputy Governor State Bank of Pakistan while speaking at the 8th International Information Security Conference here today said “Solutions that work in wired networks may not be sufficient to address risks for applica-

tion in a wireless environment and the transfer of information from a wired to a wireless environment can create additional risks to the integrity and confidentiality of the information exchanges. He said that security was one of the biggest customer concerns when considering e-banking adoption. The conference was organized by Total Communications in collaboration with Pakistan In-

formation Security Association (PISA) There are five key principles guiding technology risk management in Mobile Financial Services: confidentiality, integrity, availability, authentication, and non-repudiation. “These have been embedded in our regulatory framework for branchless banking” the deputy governor of the State Bank of Pakistan said. In Pakistan, the banking

system despite its major transformation remains restricted in its outreach. “In a population of 185 million, there are only 32 million deposit accounts and 6 million borrowers. On the contrary, the number of mobile phone subscribers has cross 130 million across all economic and geographic segments.” Ammar Jaffri, President of PISA, said that experts have drafted Cyber Security

Law (CSL) to protect people, businesses and the government of Pakistan from security risks while using Internet. “The drafted regulations will be first send to Senate by end of January-2014 and then to National Assembly for approval,” he told media on sidelines of the conference. Addressing the audience earlier, he said that everyone was competing in cyber

space where criminals were so active. “To counter and compete with criminals, we need to create warriors in Pakistan as well, as the developed and developing world is doing.” “Criminals would always go where the money is coming from...and the money in coming from the financial sector,” he said. Asher Faisal Khan, CEO, Commtel Systems, said that information

security was not a myth, but a reality that organizations need to accept at first stage. Absence of the security measures at their-end has caused losses of billions of dollars to multinational companies and banks at world across, including Sony, oil giant Saudi Aramco, Bank of Muscat, and a national bank of an emirate in UAE. Dr. Athar Mehboob, Dean, Suffa University, said that cyber

crime has grown to the level of industry at world across. “Criminals are developing malicious software for financial benefits these days. There was a time in 70’s when they used to do it for earning fame.” The one-day conference also held a panel discussion “Current Security threats and Solutions”. Annual premier event was largly attended by Information Security experts of the country.

Opportunity for Pakistan to top T20 rankings

Usman added to T20 squad D UBAI —Pakistan

have added the uncapped left-arm seamer Usman Khan to the T20 squad for the two-match series against Sri Lanka in the UAE, beginning on Wednesday. In his maiden season, the 19-year-old took 5 for 9 to help Zarai Taraqiati Bank Limited (ZTBL) beat Sui Northern Gas Pipelines Limited in the final of the Faysal Bank T20 Cup for departments in December. He was also the tournament’s leading wickettaker with 11 wickets in six games. “I wasn’t really expecting such a quick call but I am terribly lucky to have a chance after my best spell against the best players in domestic cricket,” Usman told ESPNcricinfo. “I am thankful to the selectors and the PCB for picking me up. “I don’t know if this is too early for me (to play the international cricket) but what I can say is that I am bowling at my best and ready to hit the international arena. I am looking forward to the opportunity and would like to be Pakistan’s surprise package against Sri Lanka.” Born in Landi Kotal, a town 1,072m above sea level in the mountain ranges of FATA, Usman was identified by Khan Research Laboratories for their inter-department

Kabbadi World Cup, Pakistan to face US in first semi-final I SLAMABAD —In the World Kabbadi Cup, Pakistan will take on the United States on Wednesday (today) in the first semi-final in the Indian city of Bathinda tomorrow. Pakistan remained undefeated in their pool and ended at the top with ten points after five outings. Pakistan will face the United States in the semifinals on Wednesday, a private TV channel reported. Pakistan’s skipper Babar Gujjar was elated by the splendid run of his team.”I am very happy that we earned our fifth straight win. Babar was confident that Pakistan would beat the US with a high margin. Pakistan kabaddi team had thrashed England 6928 in their last Group B game of the Men’s Kabaddi World Cup at the War Heroes Stadium Sangrur, India, on Monday. The second semi-final will be played at the same venue tomorrow between host India and the winner of today’s contest between England and Canada.— APP

Under-19 team in 2011. He later joined ZTBL, for which he made his first-class debut. In four first-class matches, Usman has picked up 12 wickets with a best of 4 for 27. He has also taken 16

wickets in 11 T20 games. Usman is the fifth seamer in the T20 squad and third left-armer, including Sohail Tanvir and Junaid Khan. He is expected to join the team on the morning of the first T20 in Dubai today. Meanwhile, Pakistan will jump to the number-one position on the Reliance ICC Twenty-20 Team Rankings if it wins the two-match series against Sri Lanka when starting on Wednesday at Dubai International Cricket Sta-

dium. Sri Lanka who will defend its number-one ranking on the T20 Team Rankings has remained in the number-one position since October 8, 2012 following the ICC World T20 2012, where it reached the final. It leads fourthranked Pakistan by eight ratings points, says a press release issued here. However, this will change if Pakistan manages to win both T20s. If Pakistan wins the series 2-0, then Pakistan side will earn four ratings points while the Sri Lankan side will drop six ratings points. This swing will mean Pakistan will jump to the number-one position on 125 ratings points and Sri Lanka will join India and South Africa on 123 ratings points, but will be ranked above those sides when the ratings are calculated beyond the decimal point. If the series result is reversed, then Sri Lanka will retain the number-one spot, and move to 133 ratings points while Pakistan will drop behind the West Indies into fifth position on 118 ratings points. If the series ends in a one-all draw, Sri Lanka will finish in the number-one spot on 128 ratings points and Pakistan will stay in fourth

position on 121 ratings points. Meanwhile, only two batsmen from either side feature in the top 20 of the Reliance ICC Player Rankings for T20 Batsmen. These are Tillakaratne Dilshan (12th), Kumar Sangakkara (16th) (both Sri Lanka), Mohammad Hafeez (19th) and Umar Akmal (20th) (both Pakistan). Pakistan and Sri Lanka bowlers dominate the Reliance ICC Player Rankings for T20 Bowlers with Saeed Ajmal second, Ajantha Mendis third and Hafeez fourth. Outside the top 10 are Nuwan Kulasekara (11th), Shahid Afridi (12th), Angelo Mathews (18th) and Lasith Malinga (19th). Sohail Tanvir is in 26th position and will be aiming to break into the top 20. Muhammad Hafeez in second position is the highest-ranked player on the Reliance ICC Player Rankings for T20I All-rounders while Afridi is in fifth position. Hafeez trails Australia’s Shane Watson by 10 ratings points and can potentially top the rankings if he performs well with both bat and ball. Pakistan will its first T20 match on December 11 while the second on December 13.—APP

Talah is hot for selection in Pakistan team: Sarfraz K ARACHI —Former Test paceman Sarfraz Nawaz has said that Muhammad Talah is fastest bowler in the country and hot for selection in Pakistan team for Test and well one-day series against Sri Lanka. “At the moment Talah is the best bowler in the country and in absence of Muhammad Irfan, he is the best choice for the selection in the team,” he said in an interview on Tuesday. Lanky Muhammad Talah, who made his Test debut infamous second Test in Gaddafi Stadium Lahore when Sri Lanka team came under attack on third March 2009, has taken 31 wickets in President’s Trophy for Port

Qasim Authority. “Talha is in the prime form and fitness and taking wickets consistently on domestic circuit,” he said. “Talha is hot and “Hit the iron when its hot,” he said on the 25-year-old fast bowler from Faisalabad. Lean and lanky but quick Talah finished with haul 11 wickets in the match against ZTBL at Sialkot in President’s Trophy last week. “I think Talah in a good rhythm and great future prospect if given chance at this juncture,” Sarfraz Nawaz, himself a great swing and seam bowler of yesteryears, said. He believed that Muhammad Talah can admi-

rably fill the gap created with injury to Muhammad Irfan. He blamed tour management for not caring for Muhammad Irfan and over burdening him in Test, ODIs and T20I despite fully knowing his breaking down. In the meantime, former Pakistan captain and PQA Coach Rashid Latif has said that Muhammad Talha is prime form to go into the Pakistan team. “He (Talha) is bowling magnificently and is great material for Pakistan team,” he said. Pakistan is facing some problems after injury to Muhammad Irfan and long recovering of Umar Gul after knee surgery.—APP

It’s time to offer ‘Fateha’ for hockey: Shehnaz ISLAMABAD—Former Olym- to playing for the last posi- as a first step on the long road

towards revival of the national game. “It was the time to offer ‘Fateha’ for the national game which I earlier believed was in Intensive Care Unit”, he said in sarcastic observation on Pakistan juniors’ pathetic display in New Delhi where they scrapped through 3-2 against lowly Egypt and then were whipped 6-1 by tile contenders Germany. “I would rather say Pakistan showed consistency but only in being condemned to playing for the last positions”, he said. Pakistan failed to reach quarter-finals after 2-2 draw against Belgium and would now play for positions outside the first eight. “I believe that lack of physical fitness and team work resulted in sorry state of affairs for the team,” he said, adding, there was no aggression and spark in the players which was mandatory in modern hockey. Shehnaz said he would not call it a junior team as 10 senior players were playing in it. “If a team having 10 senior players cannot beat junior opponents, how can you expect them to play against senior international teams,” he emphasised. The former olympian said the recent change of hockey management had also caused confusion among the players MELBOURNE: Jelena Dokic of Australia serves in her first round match against Jarmila which was another reason of the debacle.—APP Gajdosova of Australia in the Australian Open 2014 Qualifying at Melbourne Park. pian Shehnaz Sheikh, speaking after Pakistan’s humiliating elimination from the Jr. World Cup on Tuesday, remarked that the only consistency the national sides showed these days was their condemnation

tions. In comments to APP after Belgium held Pakistan to a 2-2 draw in their last pool match in New Delhi, Shehnaz reiterated his call for change at the helm of Pakistan Hockey Federation

DUBAI: Mohammad Nabi dives to take a catch during Afghanistan vs Ireland, Intercontinental Cup final, 1st day.

Pakistan women kabaddi team secures place in WC semifinal

Misbah fears homesickness for his players D UBAI —Pakistan captain toll on the players. Since the an issue homesickness can

2009 terrorist attack on the Sri be. In fact, because of the K A R A C H I — P a k i s t a n ’ s Misbah-ul-Haq has said that Lankan cricket team in recent series against South women kabaddi team on Tuesday created history by marching into the semi final of the Women Kabaddi World Cup, beating Mexico 49-24 in their last group-B match in India. With this victory, Pakistan accumulated four points from the three matches they played and set up a date with arch rival India in the semi final match. Team Green needed this win to proceed into the semi finals as England and Pakistan both had two points each before this match. Pakistan was narrowly beaten by Denmark 45-39 in the opening match while the team bounced back against England in their second match winning 41-30. The team is placed in Group B in the competition along with England, Mexico and Denmark as eight teams fight for the title and have a chance to win a handsome prize of INR10 million.—APP

Belgium top group in Junior World Cup NEW DELHI—Belgium continued their great run in the Junior World Cup when they came back from two goals down to draw 2-2 with Pakistan and top Group A at the Major Dhyan Chand National Stadium here. The Belgians will now play France while defending champions Germany, who thrashed Egypt 6-0 on Tuesday, finished as runners-up in the group to set up a last eight clash against former champions Australia. Pakistan needed a sixgoal win to make the last eight and went on to attack right from the start. But their first goal came only in the 41st minute through Mohamed Dilber. Dilber was on target again in the 54th minute and gave Pakistan a glimmer of hope of making the last eight. But the Belgians dug deep and dragged themselves back into the game, narrowing the deficit in the 60th minute when Maxime Plennevaux stole a pass from a defender, turned on the spot and blasted a backhand shot high into the net. The momentum was now with the Belgians and Plennevaux scored another field goal to make it 2-2. In the other Group A match, Germany went 1-0 up with a little help from an Egyptian defender, who deflected the ball into his own net after just four minutes. Germany doubled their tally in the 19th minute through Niklas Bruns. Christopher Ruhr made it 3-0 in the 42nd minute.—APP

Lahore, no team has toured Pakistan, citing security concerns. Pakistan have since played the majority of their home games in the UAE, as well as matches in New Zealand and England. “It is not an easy thing not being able to play at home for so long,” Misbah told Express News. “There are players in this side who have not had a chance to play international matches in Pakistan.” Misbah also pointed to Jonathan Trott’s recent withdrawal from the England his team having to con- squad for the ongoing Ashes stantly play away from home with a stress-related illness, has taken a psychological as an example of just how big

Africa in UAE, the Pakistan players were forced to celebrate Eid away from home. “Jonathan Trott’s example should be an eyeopener for the world. Imagine what the players have gone through in all these years,” Misbah said. “I think it’s time that the ICC and other cricket nations support Pakistan because international cricket away from home has tough demands on the players. “There is non-stop international cricket these days and it is extremely hard on the players to be away from their families for such long periods.”—AFP

Unrest threatens T20 World Cup, hosts admit D H A K A — B a n g l a d e s h ’s cricket chief has said that next year’s Twenty20 World Cup is threatened by the country’s deadly political violence, warning there may only be weeks to save the tournament. The 16-team competition, due to take place between March 16 and April 6, should be the biggest sporting event ever staged by Bangladesh. But the country has been gripped by violent protests

in recent weeks, with opposition supporters insisting that Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina stand aside ahead of elections due next year. More than 74 people have been killed since late October. “If this situation prevails, then any big tournament or participation of any big country will be under threat,” Bangladesh Cricket Board (BCB) president Nazmul Hassan told reporters late Monday.“This must end in January and preferably in De-

cember.” A team of International Cricket Council (ICC) inspectors declared last week that they were “happy” with security arrangements but said they would continue to monitor the situation. However, the dangers posed to teams was underlined at the weekend when a small bomb exploded outside the West Indies’ Under19 team’s hotel in the port city of Chittagong, prompting them to cut short their tour.—AFP

Are South African commentators bias? Yes, and it smacks of arrogance, says Rahul Mankad BIPIN DANI OBSERVER CORRESPONDENT M UMBAI —Rahul Mankad is a good listener. The son of former all-rounder late Vinoo Mankad and the brother of Ashok Mankad, Rahul believes that the current commentators in South Africa are totally bias. Speaking exclusively, the 59-year-old Rahul Mankad, who played 47 First Class matches, says, “the SA commentators (Kepler Wessels, Mike Haysman and Robin Jackman, in particular) kept on suggesting that the Indian batsmen ‘succumbed to pace’. Fair enough. one or two did show some weakness. The fact is...ALL batsmen struggle against genuine pace and India are no exception”. Backing his claims, he says further, “India were chasing daunting targets. 300 plus in the first game

and 280 plus in the second. Indian batsmen had to take risks and hoped that the percentages would work in their favour as it did in case to De Kok and Amla (who had lots of inner edges, french cuts and lucky shots in the early stages). Unfortunately for India, their shots..good as well as injudicious ones went to the fielders and they were out caught”. “Raina was unfairly criticized, particularly in the second match. He just seems to get into awkward positions (mainly due to indecision about whether to hook or duck/leave. NOT due to fear, In my opinion as the SA commentators were alluding). He had to play adventurous shots at that stage of the game. How else does one chase 8+ runs required in an over ? I thought Raina acquitted himself well in the second match”. “ALL teams generally perform better in ‘home’ condi-

tions, including India AND SA. Commentators love to point out the fact that it is ONLY India that does not perform well away from home. Is batting against pace the ONLY criterion for good batsmanship ?”, Mankad asks. “It would be fair and just to suggest that just as a batsman is generally judged on how s/he bats against pace, pace bowlers ought to be judged on how they bowl on batsmanfriendly wickets. Both cases are strong to confirm who are ‘backyard bullies’ it batsmen from South Asia or pace bowlers from SA/Australia”. he argued. “Finally, I just feel that the tone and language used to describe the Indian performance smacks of a patronising and condescending attitude by the SA commentators and it smacks of arrogance”, he signed off.

3 foods linked with depression


T’S no secret that we tend to eat a little more around the holidays. And with all the hustle and bustle of the season, many of us have trouble finding time to make healthy choices. That may be why it’s nearly impossible to secure a treadmill at the gym in January — our resolutions are a reflection of our guilt. We know why we tend to eat poorly. But could our food choices be leading to something other than an expanding waistline? If our poor choices become a habit, certainly. According to recent studies, it’s possible that eating certain foods is associated with depression. Here are three foods you may want to avoid in excess this holiday season, and beyond. [7 Holiday Stress Busters] Refined Grains: Pasta is a quick meal, great for those busy nights when you have to spend most of your time shopping, baking or wrapping. But, it may not be a good meal to have every night. Pasta, white rice and bagels are all foods that have been identified as inflammatory and have been linked to depression in women ages 50 to 77, according to an October 2013 study in the journal Brain, Behavior and Immunity. In the study, researchers looked at the eating habits of more than 40,000 women, who didn’t have depression at the study’s start. They found that those who consumed inflam-

matory foods regularly were more likely to suffer from depression by the end of the study. Soft Drinks: As you’re buzzing around from store to store, how will you replenish lost fluids? It’s all too easy to grab a cola on-the-go, but the same study in Brain, Behavior and Immunity study indicated that soft drinks as part of a regular diet may also contribute to depression. So, if soda is your go-to drink when you’re thirsty, it may be time to rethink that strategy. Fast Food: People who eat fast food are 51 percent more likely to develop depression than those who don’t, according to a 2012 study in the journal Public Health Nutrition. This includes commercial baked goods, hamburgers, hot dogs and pizza, the researchers said. Keep in mind that eating a small portion of any one food is unlikely to raise depression risk, so don’t worry if you’ve just eaten your first heaping bowl of pasta in ages, or had the very occasional fast food burger. On the other hand, if this list describes three of your basic food groups, you may benefit from a drastic dietary adjustment. Healthy Bites appears weekly on LiveScience. Deborah Herlax Enos is a certified nutritionist and a health coach and weight loss expert in the Seattle area with more than 20 years of experience. Read more tips on her blog, Health in a Hurry!

KARACHI: Chief Minister Syed Qaim Ali Shah addressing Human Rights pledge signing ceremony to observe International Human Rights Day organized by PPPP Human Right Cell at CM House. Bilawal Bhutto and others are also seen in the picture.—PO photo

71 flourmill owners misleading 20m consumers STAFF REPORTER

NAB striving for end of corruption STAFF REPORTER

KARACHI—Seventy-one own- KARACHI—The National Acers of flour mills were misleading the 20 million people for their vested interest by making a cry and hue on the issue of decayed wheat that they had procured on cheaper rates for crushing it into flour and selling to the consumers for higher rates of profit. This was stated by Sindh Minister for food Jam Mehtab Husain Dahr in a press conference he had addressed at his office Tuesday. The flour mills owners had purchased decayed wheat which was roughly eaten by insects and was for feeding the animals only. Sindh Food department had a stock of unfit for human consumption wheat at its warehouses.

countability Bureau (NAB) Director General Wajid Ali Durrani said that the NAB was dealing with 250 corruption cases while the Bureau had so far ensured recovery of Rs 1.5 billion. Every efforts was being made to take the country up to a level of a country without corruption at the international level for which the NAB was applying all available resources, which would bear fruits one day. He shared this information with the newsmen on the occasion of a walk that was organized in negation to corruption Tuesday. The NAB Additional Director Abdul Hafeez Siddiqui, Director Basheer Ahmed, Nisar Memon and other officials and

students from different colleges and universities had attended the walk. Durrani said that a week against the corruption was being commemorated under the aegis of United nations and the walk was also a part of that theme. He said that the Sindh provincial government was striving for the eradication of corruption and the NAB was flanking the government in its struggle for making the country free from corruption. However, it should not only be the government or NAB alone but the whole of the society should incorporate its share with the two institutions so that the corruption should be fully eliminated from the society. Later, a ceremony was followed by the walk wherein the NAB DG Durrani had distributed shields to the representatives of various institutions.

KARACHI: The Consul General of Thailand Wichai Sirisujin, hosted a reception on the occasion of the 86th birthday anniversary of King Bhumibol Adulyadej, at a local hotel. Picture shows chief guest Senior Minister of Sindh Nisar Ahmed Khuhru, Thai Govt Trade Adviser, Arif Suleman, and diplomats from Saudi Arabia, Indonesia and Malaysia, with host cutting a cake.—PO photo Sultan Chaki

Commissioner announces ACP polls schedule STAFF REPORTER KARACHI—Karachi Commissioner Shoaib Ahmed Siddiqui had Tuesday announced elections schedule of the Arts Council of Pakistan (ACP), Karachi during a press conference he had addressed at the ACP on the subject of annual elections of the ACP for the year 2014. According to details, the elections of the ACP-2014 for the posts of President, Vice President, Secretary, Joint Secretary, Treasurers and Governing Body members would be held on Dec 29. The voters list would be displayed for public view on Dec 11 and could be obtained in compact disc (CD) form after making a payment of Rs 150. Objections on voters lists could be filed on Dec 13, 2013 while the final list of voters would be displayed on Dec 14. Nomination papers for the posts of President, Vice President, Secretary, Joint Secretary, Treasurers and Governing Body members could be submitted on Dec 17 at the office of Chief Election Commissioner at ACP. Nomination forms could be obtained from ACP on Dec 14 during working hours & should be submitted along with a fee of Rs 200. The scrutiny of the nomination papers would be done on Dec 19 at 3 PM at the office of the Chief Election Commissioner at the ACP and the nominee or his/her representatives along with authority letter should ensure his presence at the time of scrutiny. Nomination papers could be withdrawn on Dec 20 till 5 PM and then the final list of the contestants would be displayed at the ACP’s notice board on Dec 21. The polling would according to clause 1 of the agenda start 30 minutes after conclusion of the Governing Body meeting for 8 hours without any pause. Presentation of computerised national identity card would be a must for casting vote.

Qaim for speedy completion of public schemes STAFF REPORTER KARACHI—Sindh Chief Minister (CM) Syed Qaim Ali Shah had directed the executing departments to take 335 prioritized new development schemes, conceived at the estimated cost of Rs 41940 million included in annual development programme (ADP)-201314 with annual allocation of Rs 10575 million. The officers must complete 313 ongoing development schemes by Dec 31, 2013 without fail as they committed earlier and added that no excuse would be maintained in this regard. This he directed while presiding over the meeting regarding implementation on new approved ADP schemes 2013-14 held at CM House Tuesday. Sindh Chief Secretary Sajjad Saleem Hotiyana, Additional Chief Secretary (P&D) Arif Khan, Additional Chief Secretary (Home) Syed Mumtaz Shah, Sec-

retary Finance Shoail Rajput, Secretary to CM Rai Sikandar and provincial and other administrative department attended. He directed the officers to give priority to the schemes, which can be completed by this financial year and the financial department to facilitate in releasing fund for such development schemes. Expressing his reservations over the schemes prepared with scheduled of completion in long period and same included in ADP with little annual allocation. The CM directed all administrative secretaries to prepare development schemes with substitution amount and annual allocation with these completion schedules within 3 years. He said that though 55 ongoing development schemes are reported to be completed by the end of current financial year but still there is room of important and intensifying the pace of de-

velopment work to complete maximum numbers of development schemes to facilitate the common men. He said that PPP Government has earmarked Rs 165 billion for development schemes of provincial government out of which Rs 95 billion would be utilized on ongoing schemes and Rs 70 billion on new development schemes, besides Rs 8.6 billion are being spent on the schemes recommended by the MPA’s. The CM while taking the notice of substandard works at some development schemes directed the related executing authorities to get such schemes rectified by the contractor’s concerned before handing over to the concerned departments failing which strict action would be taken against them. He directed the administrative secretaries also to monitor their schemes in addition to the other monitoring agencies.

CM tells British HC crime rate declines up to 35 pc STAFF REPORTER KARACHI—Sindh Chief Minister (CM) Syed Qaim Ali Shah has said that overall 35 per cent crime has declined in the result of ongoing targeted operation against the terrorists kidnappers and extortionists in the Karachi and he reaffirmed his pledge that the operation would be continue with full determination till elimination of the last criminal. This he said while talking with the British High Commissioner Adam Thomson who called on him at CM House Karachi Tuesday. The CM said the most important thing was that we have created confidence and courage

among the people of Karachi. He said that the Sindh government was not only strengthen the Sindh police by providing weapons, vehicles and induction of 10,000 cops shortly but also providing incentive to them by giving one job, one plot and Rs 2 million to the family of each martyr police officials. Beside law has been stricter empowering the LEA’s to curb the criminals with full force. He said as per strategy of government we continuously holding meetings with other political parties and taking the Sindh Governor in confidence before taking any step ahead. He said that though we have implemented the strategy of shifting the most dangerous criminal’s

case outside Karachi and province by shifting one case in interior Sindh and other outside the province. But we are also working on idea floated by PML-N leadership for exchanging most dangerous criminals between Sindh and Punjab provinces by both provincial governments. He said hopefully very near future we to gain more achievement in law & order situation Karachi. While talking about holding of local body election. The British High Commissioner Adam Thomson while expressing his satisfaction over the government efforts for brings substantial improvement in the law & order said Karachi was very important city of Pakistan.

KMC to start marketing of Shahabuddin Market STAFF REPORTER KARACHI—A 5-member committee has been formed to make the reconstructed Shahabuddin Market Saddar operational, which would submit its report within 3 days so that immediate marketing of this project could be initiated. This was decided in a meeting chaired by Karachi Metropolitan Corporation (KMC) Administrator Rauf Akhtar Farooqui. The Administrator said that besides giving shops to allottees, remaining shops of Shahabuddin Market would be allotted through auction or draw commercially. Phase-I of the project would incur Rs 800 million, which include construction of market and 5-story car parking plaza where parking facility for a good number of vehicles would be available. After completion of initial phase of the project, shops would be shifted on lower ground floor gradually whereas 131 shops were constructed on ground floor. He said that 157 shops have been constructed on mezzanine floor and 157 shops on first floor.

BSEK imposes Rs 800 as late fee for change of institution IRFAN ALIGI

KARACHI—As many as 5000 students had been inflicted with mental agony with regard to their compulsion for change of the institution (change of schools) for various reasons. The major impediments had been cause dby the Board of Secondary Education Karachi (BSEK), which lacked any preparation for streamlining the process of change of institutions. There were as many as 5000 students that had appeared in their annual examinations-2013 for class IX, conducted by the BSEK in March this year. The students had awaited their results and Marks Sheets so that they could apply for the change of institutions for various reaKARACHI: Motorists are stuck in a massive traffic jam on MA Jinnah Road due to vehicles sons that included worst law and parked at ‘No Parking Area’.

order situation in certain areas, poor facilities at their schools, change of residences and so on. As per rules and regulations, any student was eligible to reach the BSEK through a prescribed form for change of institution after the receipts of Marks Sheets after results were announced. The results were announced in first week of this month of December while Marks Sheets were yet to be issued to the students. However, the BSEK secretary had fixed a date for the submission of applications for change of residence, which was this past month of October. The BSEK Secretary had also held it mandatory for the applicants to attach Marks Sheets, School Leaving Certificates, 2 passport size snaps. Thus the applicants failed to submit their applications

as the deadline fixed by the BSEK was already past while Marks Sheets were still pending with the BSEK. On the other hand, the BSEK had charged Rs 800 as late fee while the form was sold for Rs 40 each and Rs 250 for change of institutions. It was beyonf senses as why the BSEK Secretary had imposed the sum of Rs 800 as late fee while it was not pertaining to late submission of examination forms. The BSEK was acting in violation to government’s decisions for making the education free up to the level of Matriculation (Class X) and selling forms at the rate of Rs 40, charging fee for change of institution for Rs 250 and Rs 800 as late fee would accumulate to a sum of Rs 200,000+1250000+4000000 (a

total of 54, 5000). In this regard, the private schools management association chairman Sharaf Uz Zaman had approached the BSEK through his letter expressing serious concerns on the practices being conducted by the BSEK. He wrote that the students who wish to change their educational institution after appearing in the examination of IX class mostly change their institution after the declaration of result of IX commonly on the basis of dissatisfaction from their institution or due to change of their residence for any reasons. It was a matter of understanding that in such cases permissions were being asked when it was needed so the BSEK must take only the normal permission fee. Why a certain date was fixed for that

matter? It caused hurdles in the way of education and it created financial problems and difficulties for the students. The permission department had already kept a copy of that permission letter so why they did not use it for the correction of record so that students should not face such agony, he questioned. He said that it was obviously the responsibility of BSEK to correct the record after granting permission since the permission was granted by them and they had charged a fee from student for this purpose. Moreover the time given i.e. 30 days was too much since the date of admission announced by CAP would expire earlier and the students would further suffer for not being admitted normally in any of the colleges.

3 foods linked with depression


T’S no secret that we tend to eat a little more around the holidays. And with all the hustle and bustle of the season, many of us have trouble finding time to make healthy choices. That may be why it’s nearly impossible to secure a treadmill at the gym in January — our resolutions are a reflection of our guilt. We know why we tend to eat poorly. But could our food choices be leading to something other than an expanding waistline? If our poor choices become a habit, certainly. According to recent studies, it’s possible that eating certain foods is associated with depression. Here are three foods you may want to avoid in excess this holiday season, and beyond. [7 Holiday Stress Busters] Refined Grains: Pasta is a quick meal, great for those busy nights when you have to spend most of your time shopping, baking or wrapping. But, it may not be a good meal to have every night. Pasta, white rice and bagels are all foods that have been identified as inflammatory and have been linked to depression in women ages 50 to 77, according to an October 2013 study in the journal Brain, Behavior and Immunity. In the study, researchers looked at the eating habits of more than 40,000 women, who didn’t have depression at the study’s start. They found that those who consumed inflammatory foods regularly were more likely to

suffer from depression by the end of the study. Soft Drinks: As you’re buzzing around from store to store, how will you replenish lost fluids? It’s all too easy to grab a cola on-the-go, but the same study in Brain, Behavior and Immunity study indicated that soft drinks as part of a regular diet may also contribute to depression. So, if soda is your go-to drink when you’re thirsty, it may be time to rethink that strategy. Fast Food: People who eat fast food are 51 percent more likely to develop depression than those who don’t, according to a 2012 study in the journal Public Health Nutrition. This includes commercial baked goods, hamburgers, hot dogs and pizza, the researchers said. Keep in mind that eating a small portion of any one food is unlikely to raise depression risk, so don’t worry if you’ve just eaten your first heaping bowl of pasta in ages, or had the very occasional fast food burger. On the other hand, if this list describes three of your basic food groups, you may benefit from a drastic dietary adjustment. Healthy Bites appears weekly on LiveScience. Deborah Herlax Enos is a certified nutritionist and a health coach and weight loss expert in the Seattle area with more than 20 years of experience. Read more tips on her blog, Health in a Hurry!

LAHORE: Federal Minister for Railways Khwaja Saad Rafique addressing the regional conference on Strengthening Transport Connectivity and Trade Facilitation in South and South-West Asia.

PIAF resents SNGPL’s decision about gas supply cut

Turkey working on various projects in Pakistan SALIM AHMED


LAHORE—Ambassador of TurLAHORE—Pakistan Industrial key Sadik Babur Girgin met

LAHORE: Drivers of motorcycle rickshaw protesting against heavy amount challans by Traffic Police at New Campus University Road.

Reforms to be introduced in health dept very soon STAFF REPORTER L AHORE—Advisor to Chief Minister Punjab on Health, Khawaja Salman Rafique has said that Health Department is being reorganized on modern lines while Directorate General Health Services would be further empowered whereas the policy of devolving powers to district level officers is being finalized, which will be introduced after its approval of Chief Minister Punjab Muhammad Shahbaz Sahrif. He was speaking as a chief guest at the inaugural session of a four day training workshop on Vaccine Logistics Management Information System

(VLMIS) for master trainers organized by USAID, at Avari Hotel here today. Doctors from Punjab, KPK, Azad Kashmir and GilgitBaltistan are attending this Training Workshop. The technical advisor of USAID Dr. Nisar Cheema informed that the purpose of the training workshop is to train health managers in the subjects of demand forecasting, capacity planning, analysis and modelling based on consumption, accurate, timely and routine consumption and stock status data. He said that real time supply chain management capabilities, covering point of origin, to

point of consumption, through the logistic cycle, is very essential to get true results of routine immunization coverage. He said that web-based vaccine LMIS up to union council level is being introduced under this programme. Khawaja Salman Rafique said that administrative reforms, according to the vision of Chief Minister, will be introduced in Health Department, during 2014. He said that targets of routine immunization, under EPI, and reduction of mortality rate of mother and child under MNCH programme would be focused to achieve MDGs in 2014, for which additional staff in EPI will also be inducted.

and Traders Associations Front (PIAF) on Tuesday severely criticized the Sui Northern Gas Pipeline Limited for lengthy gas supply cut and urged the government to shelve the gas closure plan because it would be a deadly blow to the entire industrial sector in general and export oriented industry in particular. The PIAF Chairman Malik Tahir Javed said on Tuesday that the gas cut on the advent of the holiday season, which usually sees a spike in export orders, with hit hard the manufacturing sector. “Gas closure is bound to plunge the exports to new lows as it is likely to impact entire industry and job loss to millions of workers that would result in industrial unrest” he said. He said that the government would have to ensure adequate gas supply to the industry because the manufacturing sector can only function viably if it remains operational round the clock that too throughout the year. “We fear a massive cut in foreign exchange earnings and massive layoffs due to threemonth gas closure plan” he added. Malik Tahir Javed said that various studies had already proved that the gas load shedding is a result of mismanagement and lack of appropriate planning. And if the mismanagement is controlled, the SNGPL would be in a better position to cater to the industry needs. The PIAF Chairman urged the government to immediately shelve the proposed load management plan to avert industrial closures and resultant layoffs.

Punjab Chief Minister Muhammad Shahbaz Sharif, here on Tuesday. Matters of mutual interest and promotion of bilateral relations were discussed in the meeting. Talking to Turkish Ambassador the Chief Minister said that Pakistan and Turkey are bound together in strong historical and friendly relations and the friendship between the two countries is based on mutual love and brotherhood. He said that several Turkish companies have made investment in various sectors in Punjab and the volume of investment is gradually increasing. He said that

metro bus project is a glorious example of Pak-Turk friendship and more than one and a half lakhs people travel by metro buses daily. He said that government wants to further extend the scope of metro bus project so that maximum people could avail comfortable, economic and speedy transport facilities. He said that friendship between Pakistan and Turkey is changing into useful economic relations. He said that Turkey has helped Pakistan in every hour of trial. He said that the visit of Turk Prime Minister Rajib Tayyip Erdogan to Pakistan will further strengthen the ties between the two countries. Turkish Ambassador Sadik Babur Girgin said

that Turkey attaches great importance to its relations with Pakistan and is working on various projects in Pakistan for promoting mutual cooperation in different sectors. He said that Chief Minister Muhammad Shahbaz Sharif has set an example by speedy completion of various projects for the welfare of the masses. He said that Chief Minister Shahbaz Sharif is serving the people with commitment and determination. He said that the ties between Pakistan and Turkey are strengthening with the passage of time and the visit of Turk Prime Minister to Pakistan will play an imSTAFF REPORTER portant role in cementing bilateral relations between the two L AHORE —The Government countries. College University, Lahore Ravians Law Society Tuesday held a one-day seminar in connection with the International Human Rights Day. Punjab Secretary Law Syed Abdul Hassan Najmee and GCU Political Science Department transparency and merit. He Chairman Dr Khalid Manzoor pointed out that completion of Butt addressed the seminar which metro bus in record time and dis- was attended by a large number tribution of laptops among stu- of students and faculty members. Speaking on the occasion, dents on merit are the clear eviSecretary Law Mr Najmee mendence of it. He said that Transparency In- tioned that Islam introduced the ternational has also declared concept the rights to the human Punjab government projects cor- beings on equal grounds. The ruption free. The Minister said Constitution of Pakistan enlists that computerization of land human rights on the lines of Unirecord is an important step of versal Declaration of Human Punjab government which will Rights, which according to the help in elimination of Patwari speaker, are in line with rights Mafia and this system will be given by Islam. Mr Najmee said functional by the end of next year. that the human rights were enCol (R) Shuja Khanzada said sured by govts; but there were that forensic lab has been estab- various areas where governments lished to improve the criminal could reach without infringing investigation procedure. He said right to privacy of citizens. that amendments have been made “Therefore, it is duty of civil soin the laws according to the ciety and individuals to ensure each other’s rights,” he added. present environment.

GCU marks human rights day

Govt utilizing all resources to maintain law, order STAFF REPORTER LAHORE—The Minister for Environment Protection and Chairman Police Reforms Committee Col. (R) Shuja Khanzada has said that Punjab government is utilizing all resources to maintain law and order in the province and for welfare of the masses. He said that transparency is the hallmark of Punjab government and all projects are being completed according to this policy. The Minister said that assistance has been sought from Turkey to equip Punjab police with modern technology. He said that government is going to introduce an accountability system to make police department corruption free and to improve the performance of police officials.

He informed for better investigation of cases a forensic lab has been installed according to international standards. Col (R) Shuja Khanzada stated this while addressing PAF War College 56 members delegation led by Air Vice Marshal Farooq Habib, here today. The Minister said that steps are being taken by the government on urgent basis to cope with energy crisis. He said that the duration of load-shedding has been decreased due to effective measures taken by the government. Col (R) Shuja Khanzada said that meeting the needs of energy was the basic purpose of foreign visits of Prime Minister and Chief Minister. He said that Punjab government has faithfully followed the policy of

PRA drafts Restaurant Invoices Monitoring System


LAHORE: Children walk down the ramp during a ceremony at Al-Hamra Hall.

L AHORE —Punjab Revenue Authority (PRA) has drafted the Restaurant Invoices Monitoring System (RIMS) aimed at making food sector compliant to Punjab Sales Tax and enhancing the revenue to the provincial exchequer. PRA sources said here on Tuesday that there is a general belief, which is not untrue, that there is a widespread tendency of tax mis-declarations in restaurants operating in Punjab especially those which are not incorporated or not part of international restaurant chains. Even tax amounts received from the customers are misappropriated. In order to overcome such traditionally entrenched unhealthy tendency, PRA has with the help of PRAL prepared a res-

taurant invoice monitoring system software. Preliminary briefing on this software was earlier given to the provincial cabinet in its meeting on 12-04-2013. The scheme was in principle concurred. The four major cornerstones of the proposed scheme were Installation of a well protected modem in the invoice generating computer system of the restaurant. Real time transmission of invoice data to PRA’s central computer system. Automated verification of monthly tax declarations through the system. Reward scheme for customers through system based random draw in case of tax-exclusive invoices over Rs.1000/-.

Now the Authority, after discussions with the PRAL, had drafted the Punjab RIMS rules and sent a summary to the Chief Minister Punjab Muhammad Shahbaz Sharif for final approval. According to the summary appropriate definitions of the words like restaurants, RIMS and video vigilance have been given for the purposes of real time monitoring and distribution of prizes (inam). Application of RIMS have been subjected to advance notification to the restaurant. A method for examination and verification of the existing invoice generated system of the restaurant have been provided. Obligation has been created to

install invoice generating system by restaurants issuing manual, irregular or traditional invoices. A provision has been made to include identification particulars of the customers in the invoices. Bar has been imposed on non-RIMS invoices in restaurants subject to RIMS coverage. Responsibility has been created for restaurants for the protection and safety of RIMS-covered invoice generated system with a mechanism of fault reporting and error correction. Automated inami scheme has been incorporated in the rules (necessary telecommunication services including centralized computer-based SMS services will be employed). The Authority will also provide

training and initial operational help to restaurants. The intentional damage/intervention or violations of RIMS-covered system have been subjected to penal actions including prosecution already covered in the statute book, summary added. It is believed that RIMS is going to be a major breakthrough in the history of business documentation of the country. It is hoped that with the implementation of RIMS, Punjab sales tax revenue from restaurants will sharply increase and a deterrence shall prevail in the overall Punjab sales tax on services system that if bad business gays in non-food sector regimes do not improve their tax behaviour, they too can be controlled through such ultra advance information technology applications.

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