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Grenade attacks kill 13 Peshawar moviegoers 3 hand grenades explode in quick succession Conspiracy to sabotage peace talks: Imran TARIQ SAEED P ESHAWAR —Amid Taliban–Government

Militants kidnap Red Cross team in Mali B AMAKO—A leading Islamist militant group has kidnapped a team of Red Cross workers in northern Mali who had been reported missing, an official from the militant group said on Tuesday. The members of the International Committee of the Red Cross team “are alive and in good health” in the hands of the Movement for Oneness and Jihad in West Africa, a MUJAO official told AFP in a telephone call. MUJAO is one of the groups allied to al Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb which

parleys to find out ways for bringing end to the bloodshed and ensure lasting peace in the region, the provincial metropolis Peshawar bathed in blood on the second consecutive day when a series of explosions ripped through a cinema house Tuesday afternoon leaving thirteen people dead and 25 others seriously wounded. The condition of many blast victims was stated to be in precarious condition in the City’s main hospital where the medics feared the death toll would go higher. Cricket legend and Chief of Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaaf (PTI) Imran Khan, whose party is leading the ruling coalition in Khyber

Pukhtunkhwa, said the recent series of sabotage activities were being carried out by the forces who were opposed to the Government- Militant’s talks and did not want the restoration of peace in Pakistan. This was the second consecutive blast in the City and fourth in a short span of last ten days. On Monday a suicide explosion in the outskirts of city killed four women and wounded five people including four ladies and a child whereas on Tuesday last a pow- ISLAMABAD: Govt-TTP talks committee members called on Prime Minister Muhammad Nawaz Sharif. erful explosion ripping through a hotel in a congested locality had left 10 people including women and kids dead and over 45 others seriously wounded. Likewise a two hand grenade attacks in a cinema house on February 2 had resulted in killing of five cine-

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OBSERVER REPORT Nawaz Sharif met with members of the government committee formed to hold dialogue with the Taliban on Tuesday. Prime Minister Sharif was informed of the positive response received from the Taliban after being informed of the demands put forward by the government committee for talks. Prime Minister Sharif said that an end to terrorist activity was pivotal for the dialogue process to be fruitful. Besides Irfan Siddiqui, Rustam Shah Mohmand and Major (retd) Amir the meeting was also attended

29 Brigadiers promoted as Major Generals

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Nawaz to visit Turkey for Afghan summit ISLAMABAD—Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif will leave for a three-day visit to Turkey from February 12 to 14 to attend the 8th trilateral summit being held in Ankara over issues related to Afghanistan. A Foreign Office spokesperson, giving the details, said the trilateral summit will be attended by the leaders of Turkey, Afghanistan and Pakistan. The Prime Minister would be accompanied by a high-level delegation, he added. The Turkey-Afghanistan-Pakistan Trilateral process was launched in 2007 and the last summit was also held in Ankara in December 2012.—APP

CCI rightly focuses on coal ................................................ Pakistan’s welcome agreement with Iraqi Air Force ................................................ Crush foreign funded terrorists with force See Page 04

Govt committed to addressing energy challenges: PM

Stresses scientific research, modern technology SHARAFAT KAZMI

ISLAMABAD: Prime Minister

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R AWALPINDI—Pakistan Army on Tuesday announced promotion of 29 Brigadiers to the rank of Major Generals. According to ISPR, the Brigadiers, who promoted to the slot of Major General included, Brig Hasnat, AC, Brig Azhar Saleh, AC, Brig Abdullah Dogar, AC, Brig. Abid Mumtaz, Arty, Brig. Qaiser, Arty, Brig Shahid Kiani, Arty, Brig Asif, Arty (ASFC), Brig. Aziz, Arty, Brig. Hamood, AD, Brig. Jamil, Engrs, Brig. Moazzam, Engrs, Brig Farhan, SIGS, Brig. Shahzad Naeem, Inf, Brig Majid, Inf, Brig. Amir Abbasi, Inf, Brig. Zafar ul Haq, Inf, Brig. Azhar

Govt, TTP committees hold informal meeting

Continued on Page 7 PESHAWAR: Rescue officials shifting dead bodies of Shama Cinema bomb blasts to hospital on Tuesday.

Lone survivor found as 102 killed in Algeria plane crash ALGIERS—A military aircraft carrying 103 people crashed in Algeria’s mountainous northeast Tuesday, with a sole survivor found from one of the country’s deadliest air disasters, security and emergency officials said. The C-130 Hercules aircraft, which crashed in the Oum El Bouaghi region, was carrying 99 passengers, soldiers and their families, as well as four crew members, a security source told AFP. “We have found a survivor and the search continues,” emergency services official Colonel Farid Nechad told public radio, without giving further details.

The emergency services have so far recovered 71 bodies from the crash site, public radio reported. A security source had said earlier that all on board had perished. The plane was flying from the desert garrison town of Tamanrasset in the deep south to the city of Constantine, 320 kilometres east of the capital, and lost contact with the control tower just as it was beginning its descent. The aircraft slammed into Mount Fertas in the Oum El Bouaghi region at around midday (1100 GMT), state media quoted army spokesman Colonel Bouguern as say-

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SC notices AG in Imran poll rigging case OBSERVER REPORT ISLAMABAD—The Supreme Court of Pakistan on Tuesday issued notice to Attorney General Suleman Aslam Butt in a case filed by Tehreek-i-Insaf chief Imran Khan regarding alleged rigging in four National Assembly seats during May 11 polls. A three-judge bench, headed by Chief Justice Tassaduq Hussain Jillani, also sought written reply

26-km Metro track will be elevated in Pindi, on ground in Islamabad Shahbaz Sharif to visit Rawalpindi every week I SLAMABAD —Chief Minister of the Punjab Mian Muhammad Shahbaz Sharif will visit Rawalpindi every week to personally supervise the in-time completion of Rs30 billion mega PindiIslamabad Metro Bus project. “The CM will be given a briefing every week in all the coming 10 months, the stipulated time period for the project start-

ing from March 1, 2014” confirmed a senior official of the District Administration Tuesday. The groundbreaking of the project will take place on Feb 28. First Metro Bus will be on track on December 28, 2014, this year, he said. The ruling party is seeing the project as a landmark in the city’s history and hopes by giving this gift to the residents of the city it will be able to regain its lost seats for the Na-

Comment Sirajuddin Aziz

W

HILE we dream the sweetest of dreams in our warm and cozy beds at an arm’s length distance of our loved ones. There are our fellows country men who are placed up in the highest glaciers of the world, living in the most inhumane and brutal physical circumstances away from their loved ones, fighting the enemy, defending the borders of our country in the most challenging situations, amidst ruthless weather conditions, hanging by the thread of the cold hands of death

tional and Provincial Assemblies. According to the District Government’s official, the project will significantly ease the huge traffic pressure on the city’s main artery i.e. Murree Road (Benazir Bhutto Road). At present the city is witnessing the worst traffic jams due to massive influx on the BB Road from all sides. It may be mentioned the Pindi-

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IRFAN ALIGI KARACHI—Muttahidda Qaumi Movement (MQM) had given a deadline of 24 hours for producing the missing workers of the MQM or else the MQM would evolve it future action plan. MQM Coordination Committee member Haider Abbas Rizvi made this announcement public during a press conference he had addressed at the Abbasi Shaheed Hospital Karachi Tuesday. The press conference was held to make a mani-

fest of protest over murder-incustody of another worker of

PM takes notice of police torture ISLAMABAD—Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif on Tuesday took notice of alleged police torture on MQM worker. Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif has sought Continued on Page 7

Cop killed, other hurt in anti-polio attack D I K HAN —Unidentified miscreants fired shots at polio vaccination team on Tuesday, killing one policeman while injuring another as they were providing security to a team of anti-polio in Dera Ismail Khan district of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, officials said. Police officials said the attack took place when gunmen fired at antipolio-vaccination team at Prowa area of Dera Ismail Khan, second largest district city of restive province of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa. The injured cop was shifted to a Dera Ismail Khan hospital.

In defence of army gripping them at any moment, they are prepared to sacrifice their lives for the love of the country, fully alert to the insinuation of the enemy at every moment. These khaki clad country men are the pride of our nation. They are extra ordinary beings who protect our motherland, our home, while we lull into wonderland peacefully with the conviction that tomorrow when we wake up, there will be no antagonistic takeover ripping us of our freedom. Only last year itself, statistics recorded a number of 140. This is the count of those valiant soldiers who lost their lives while defending the nation’s border on the

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MQM fixes 24-hour deadline for missing workers production

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Rawalpindi-Islamabad Metro bus project

ZUBAIR QURESHI

ISLAMABAD —Prime Minister Muhammad Nawaz Sharif has said that the government is committed to addressing challenges in energy sector. Talking to a delegation of Asian Development Bank in Islamabad Tuesdayt he said energy parks are being established in Gadani which will produce 6600 MW electricity. He said the government is also planning the construction of Diamer-Bhasha and Bunji dams. The Prime Minister said economic indicators have improved during the current financial year. He thanked the ADB for its support to the State Owned Enterprises reforms be-

sides providing 430 million dollars for Social Protection Development Project. Speaking on the occasion‚ Vice President Asian Development‚ Wencai Zhang expressed the hope that Pakistan will make high economic growth in the coming years. He assured that the Bank will support the present government’s efforts in energy sector reforms. He said Pakistan and the Asian Development Bank will sign an agreement tomorrow under which the bank will provide nine hundred million dollars for Jamshoro power generation project. A delegation of European organization for Nuclear Research (CERN) called on the prime minister at the PM house.

Siachen Glacier. We gave them the respect by digging out their dead and frozen corpses from under an avalanche of snow. While they perish in those extreme conditions up in the highest, most unforgiving peaks of inclement weather, we toast ourselves in the comfort of our homes, switching channels and mindlessly belittling their efforts. I came across a 20 year old extremely enthusiastic soldier. Full of patriotism and the fervor to serve his country. His eyes gleaming with the hope to don that khaki uniform and march towards the border of the country, to be a part of the battalion who fights for

He is reportedly in a critical condition. Body of deceased cop was also shifted to government hospital for autopsy. Heath workers, however, remained safe in Tuesday attack, officials said. WHO in recent days declared Peshawar, capital of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, as epicenter of polio virus in the world. There was no immediate claim of responsibility for the attack, but the Pakistani Taliban have repeatedly targeted health

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a just cause. His zeal accelerated when he was called on to be posted at the Pakistan and Afghanistan border. The 20 year old, belonging to the northern part of Pakistan, the only son of his elderly parents was most jubilant upon this assignment. Only 6 weeks after arriving into Afghanistan, he returned home in a coffin wrapped in the green and white flag. While the elderly parents witnessed their youthful son laid to rest. Their entire life reeling back only two decades ago, when they first held their new born in their hands, hoping that this child would herald all the happiness in their lives. Their only son, who was their source of economic sustenance and hope to live on, was now buried six feet under before their eyes, to what avail?

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the MQM of unit 136 in Shadman Town in North Karachi, Muhammad Adil, who was arrested by Police and was exposed to brutal torture for a couple of days and was handed to his brother in extremely dangerous condition. Adil had succumbed to his injuries on Tuesday night. Amin Ul Haque, Amir Khan, Wasay Jalil, Waseem Akhtar, Aadil Khan, Aslam Afridi and Rauf Siddiqui were present. He said that the law enforcement agencies had on

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Contact made with Altaf: Qaim STAFF REPORTER KARACHI —Sindh

Chief Minister (CM) Syed Qaim Ali Shah has said that contact has been established with MQM Chief Altaf Hussain and Governor Sindh Dr Ishrat Ul Ebad Khan to discuss and share the information about the two incidents took place with MQM workers recently. He said that inquiry into these matters was being made by Inquiry Committee comprising on Senior Officers and assured that who so ever found responsible would be taken to task. This he said while talking to the newsmen after the 35th Anniversary of the victory of Islamic revolution in Iran organized by the Consul General Iran Mehdi Sobhani at Iranian Consulate at Shahrae Iran Clifton Karachi this night. He said that actually these incidents took place in his absence when he (CM) was in Saudi Arabia to perform Umrah but he had ordered for inquiry from there promptly. Answering a question, the CM said that Sindh Police and Rangers have made marvelous performance during the targeted operation against the terrorists and their performance could

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President stresses for tolerance to ensure peace in country G UJRANWALA —President Mamnoon Hussain on Tuesday said the country could be made a hub of peace and harmony through self-accountability, identifying wrongdoings and forgiving others. He said, “If every individual fulfils his responsibilities and institutions are strengthened, the country would gradually become a haven of peace and stability”. Addressing a seminar on “Islam: Peace and Stability” under the auspices of Wasif Khayal Sangat, Mamnoon said Pakistan was facing challenges of sectarianism, militancy, extremism, and poverty. He said that every person should fulfil his responsibility and play a role for the prosperity and development of the country. Paying glowing tribute to the thoughts and teachings of Wasif Ali Wasif, the President said teachings of Sufis, like Wasif Ali Wasif, should be promoted to restore peace and stability in the country.

Baba Guru Nanak varsity soon: Barjees

Sufism spread the message of brotherhood, religious harmony and love amongst the masses, he added. The President said some elements tried to detrack the country from the right path but the elected democratic government of the country was committed to steering the country towards prosperity, religious harmony and brotherhood. He said Islam is a religion of peace. Mamnoon stressed the need to benefit from local wisdom to contribute to development of the country and overcome the prevailing crisis. “Let us come and accept our wrongdoings and rise above our personal interests for the sake of national unity and harmony,” he added. The President said those who were killing innocent people must be discouraged and every kind of extremism could be eliminated by truthful pursuance of the teachings of Islam and Sufism.

Referring to anti-state elements, he said Pakistan is a blessing of Allah Almighty and it will live forever. He said Muslims of the Sub-continent had made great sacrifices under the dynamic leadership of Quaid-e-Azam Muhammad Ali Jinnah and Allama Dr Muhammad Iqbal for the creation of Pakistan and added evil designs of some elements to harm Pakistan would fail. Federal Minister for Production and Industry Khurram Dastgir Khan, senior journalist Mujeeb ur Rehman Shami and President Wasif Khayal Sangat Jahangir Mir were also present. Federal Minister Khurram Dastgir Khan also paid rich tribute to Wasif Ali Wasif, adding that he gave message of peace, brotherhood and tolerance. He said Pakistan could become a prosperous country by following the golden principles of peace, brotherhood and tolerance.—APP GUJRANWALA: Chairman Wasif Khayal Sangat Mir Jahangir presenting a souvenir to President Mamnoon Hussain during a seminar on “Islam: Peace and Stability” held under the auspices of Wasif Khayal Sangat.

Rs 1000m for security equipment to improve Quetta peace approved

ISLAMABAD—Federal Minis- QUETTA—Capital City Police Officer, Abdul ing formed to nab the elements creating law and ter for Kashmir Affairs and Gilgit-Baltistan Ch Muhammad Barjees Tahir said a dream of Baba Guru Nanak University in Nankana Sahib would soon be materialized. Talking to a delegation of PML-N Sangla Hill which called on him in his office here on Tuesday, the minister said the university would be a state of the art institution leading in all disciplines of contemporary eduction, adding, the step would open new horizons of education revolution and economic avenues. Barjees said serving humanity was not only his dream but also an exclusive mission of his party which was the reason why people elect them again. He said the country was struck into many crises ranging from poverty, terrorism, unemployment, inflation and shortage of energy but the government would overcome all of them with the support of masses.He also advised party workers to adopt service of humanity as a way of life without any discrimination as it was the only way to resolve the problems being faced by the country.—APP

FESCO implementing policy of right man for right job FAISALABAD—Chief Executive Officer Faisalabad Electric Supply Company (FESCO) Dr Rana Abdul Jabbar Khan has exhorted the officials to maintain the standards of excellence set by them. Addressing the members of review meeting here in FESCO headquarters here on Tuesday, he said that FESCO was implementing policy of right man for right job to minimize line loses and improve the recovery. The efficient workers would be entitled for reward while ineligible and lethargic employees would eligible for accountability. He ordered to install power factor meters at all feeders within a period of one week and fixation of capacitors on all grid stations by the end of this month and also directed to complete all HT & LT proposals. He directed FESCO officials to ensure maximum recovery from the dead defaulters. He said that power pilferage was a national crime and campaign against power pilferers would continue despite all odds. He said that power pilferers should be nabbed and maximum punishment would be given to them according to the law. He said that employees involved in bogus reading would not be spared and strict action would be taken against them. The meeting was also attended by G.M Operation Tariq Mehmood, CE Opearation Akhtar Ali Randhwa, CCO Rashid Aslam, CE T&G Haroon Rashid, Director Human Resources and other FESCO officers.—APP

Razaq Cheema said that Balochistan police has established monitoring and control room in the CCPO office to keep eye on the criminals through 32 CCTV cameras installed in various location of the city. “In order to improve law and order situation, Rs 500 million have been approved by the interior ministry for installation of more cameras in the provincial capital, while separately Rs 500 million has also been promised for the purchase of walkthrough gates, vehicle scanners and other security equipments,” CCPO said while talking to the newly-elect body of Balochistan Union of Journalists and senior journalists who called on him at CCPO office here. CCPO stressed that there was no political pressure on the police department and lauded the incumbent government for its sincere efforts to maintain peace in Balochistan. “There is zero political influence on police department as we are thoroughly free to perform in line with our professional commitment,” he stressed. About the steps taken for restoration of peace and tranquillity in the provincial capital, Abdul Razaq said community committee comprising the notables, political workers and local bodies representatives of their respective areas were be-

order issues for the society. The local Jewellers and bank administration has also been approached to make increase coordination and diminish the robbery and other crimes in the city. He dispelled the impression of complete security failure created in section of media as saying wrong picture is being portrayed in media about Balochistan. In order to cope with the contemporary challenges of terrorism, Police has sought help from Army to train its force on modern lines. Several badges have passed out and some 500 more jwans of police have been spared for the training being imparted under the supervision of SSG Commandoes. Stressing the need for media support in curbing crimes, he said that media should play its positive role in this regard and follow the code of ethics of journalism. Earlier Senior Journalists Saleem Shahid, Shehzada Zulfiqar, BUJ President Irfan Saeed and Abdul Khaliq Rind discussed issues faced by the media persons while covering the security related incidents. They also visited monitoring and control room in the CCPO office. SSP Operation Jaffar Khan and SP Admin were also present.—APP

Bizenjo for joint efforts against extremism I SLAMABAD —President of

National Party (NP), Senator Mir Hasil Khan Bizenjo Tuesday urged political forces and civil society for jointly support the efforts to curbi menace of extremism in the country. He was addressing an interactive discussion session regarding the political agenda of NP, organized here at SAFMA office. The session was also attended by the members of civil society. The NP leader said that civil society had the potential for bringing change in society. Highlighting his party policies in current political scenario, Bizenjo said that main agenda of party includes land reforms, rebuild state enterprises and providing free education and health facilities to the people of Balochistan. He said that NP had been working for strengthening Federation and also had rendered sacrifices in this regard. He emphasized the people for supporting liberal political parties in the country for ensuring peace and tranquility. He hoped that provincial government would be able to convince alienated Baloch people in the parameters of Constitution. He was of the view that multi-class party comprising the middle class, should be introduced to tackle challenges of the country. He said that strong support of the common people in all provinces was necessary for the socio-economic change. He stressed on the need to remove tribalization and feudalism for development of the country. He said that NP is preparing a land reforms bill to reQUETTA: A Lady Health Worker administering polio drops to a child during anti-polio move feudalism from the province as it is key for prosperdrive at Civil Hospital. ity.—APP

UoP-UUP join hands to draft urban policy framework PESHAWAR—The Institute of Urban and Regional Planning University of Peshawar (UoP) and Urban Unit Punjab (UUP) have join hands to draft urban policy framework to address the emerging issues of cities of the country. A memorandum of understanding (MoU) to this effect was signed by Vice Chancellor UoP Prof. Dr. Muhammad Rasul Jan and Dr. Nasir Javed Chief Executive of the Urban Unit Punjab in a ceremony held at UoP. The agreement would remain effective for three years under which UoP and the cooperate institute (The Urban Unit) will start short term courses related to urban sector capacity building and focus on human resource development through exchange of faculty, students and staff. Besides special urban planning awareness drive will be held in KP through arranging joint seminars, conferences and workshops on related subjects.The UoP is interested in generating its own electricity through effective solid waste management which in order to overcome the energy requirement of the University and ensure cleanliness of the grater campus, said Vice Chancellor UoP Prof. Dr. Muhammad Rasul Jan while talking to the visiting delegation.

He added that University would welcome any step that can of help the capacity building of the students and faculty. The Vice Chancellor viewed that unplanned urbanization was a reason behind the woes of people living in cities, adding that proper management techniques needs to be framed to avoid getting into a total mess while raising more municipalities.The population of the provincial metropolis was growing at the rate of knots and its high time to bring necessary controlling measures before the situation of traffic and other related issues goes out of control, said the Vice Chancellor. Dr. Nasir Javed said that Khyber Pakhtunkhwa was the least urbanized province in the country and has an opportunity to adopt best practices in urbanization before opting for more cities. He added that there enterprise work under the P&D department of the government of Punjab and had similar agreements with Universities across Pakistan. He informed a total of 5-7 percent of population around the world lives in cities and that moving vertical should be the order of the day to avoid usage of agricultural land for commercial and residential purposes.—APP

Monthly report of employment exchange issued SUKKUR—The monthly report by the Employment Exchanges and Vocational Guidance Offices, Sindh, for the month of December, 2013 have been issued here on Tuesday. According to report, 3,561 job seekers including 390 women and 3,171 others were registered for employment assistance at all Employment Exchanges in Sindh. Accordingly, 18 higher posts for Appointment Branch, 1,948 as clerical, 76 as technical and 1,519 were made as unskilled posts according to the details of the registration.Further, 84 essential personnel were registered at all Employment Exchanges in the province under the ordinance No. X of 1948. Moreover, 663 applicants including 82 women and 581 others were placed by Employment Exchanges in Sindh.—APP

Foreign elements trying to sabotage peace process ISLAMABAD—Federal Minister Senator Abbas Afridi on Tuesday said that foreign elements were trying to sabotage peace process between the government and Taliban. Talking to media outside the parliament, he said, “Foreign elements are trying to sabotage peace process between the government and Tehrik-i- Taliban Pakistan (TTP) as Taliban has denied involvement in the recent terrorist attacks.” He urged the provincial governments to focus on improving law and order situation. To a question, he said the government will ensure transparency in privatization process. The minister said only state owned entities running in losses will be privatized. Earlier Minister of State for Interior Baleeghur Rehman said the government was seriously pursuing dialogue with Tehreek-e-

Taliban Pakistan (TTP). Talking to media outside the Parliament, he said, “the government has clear stance that dialogue will be held within the ambit of the constitution. Dialogue is our first priority as mandated by all political parties.” The minister said the government and Taliban are serious to make the peace process successful. Sincerity of the Taliban cannot be doubted,” he added. However, he said timeframe for the conclusion of the peace process cannot be announced. To a question, he said the government had very clear stance that drone attacks were against the sovereignty of the country. “If there is any drone attack during the peace process, we will understand that it is an effort to sabotage the process,” he added. —APP

Karachi operation not against any political party: Khuhru NAWABSHAH—Senior Sindh Minister Nisar Ahmed Khuhro has said that Karachi operation is not aimed against any political party but terrorist elements who are destroying peace in the city. Talking to media men here on Tuesday at the 6th Convocation of Quaid-e-Awam University of Engineering Science and Technology, he said the government was taking action to maintain law and order in Karachi. The minister said Karachi was economic hub of the country and the worsening situation adversely affected the foreign investment. “The police will arrest any criminal regardless of any political affiliation on the basis of their criminal activitiy,” he said adding that the Karachi operation was launched on the appeal of Muttahida Qoumi Movement (MQM) who had demanded an operation under the supervision of army. Khuhro said the enquiry into the MQM’s allegations would be conducted but the police and rangers had been given the task to clear the city of the criminals and the operation would continue.Responding to a question, the minister said the operation would last as long as the hideouts of the criminals and target killers existed in Karachi.—APP

Timber mafia destroying environment, beauty of Murree RAJA AFZAAL SALEEM MURREE—The timber mafia has been active in cutting old and precious trees in the forests around Murree, but the officials of the Forest Department are playing the role of silent spectators. The cutting of trees from the forests is not only ruining the natural beauty of the famous tourist destination but also badly affecting the environment. The local trader Shakil Abbasi said that the lower staff of the Forest Department was also involved in this illegal cutting of trees. When contacted, Murree District Forest Officer Farooq Khan claimed that illegal cutting of trees had ended in his era. He said that the department should be informed if someone was damaging the natural environment, adding that they would take strict action against those found involved in illegally felling of trees in the area. Meanwhile, the social circles of the area have demanded the Chief Minister, Shahbaz Sharif, should immediately take steps to stop the illegal practice of felling trees.

Sherpao slams PTI-led KP govt

CHARSADDA—Former Interior Minister and Chairman Qaumi Watan Party Aftab Ahmed Khan Sherpao on Tuesday criticized the performance of the PTI-led coalition government in the province alleging that it was being run from outside the KPK. All the decisions about the utilization of the development funds and other matters relating to Pukhtuns were being made by the people from outside the provunce, he said while addressing a public meeting held in connection with 39th death anniversary of late Hayat Muhammad Khan Sherpao here at his village Sherpao.He alleged that uplift projects worth billion of rupees were underway in Sindh and Punjab province while the KP government was doing nothing to this effect.He also criticized the PTI Chief for his stand on Kalabagh Dam (KBD) issue, adding KBD cannot be constructed without developing consensus among the federating units. The former Interior Minister said target killings, kidnappings for ransom, business of extortionists were increasing while the KP government has not yet awakened from deep slumber to control this alarming situation. The WHO authorities described Peshawar as polio ‘hub’ while millions of rupees are being spent on Polio ads, which was just wastage of public money. The former interior minister said, an atmosphere of mistrust existed between the Pukthuns on both sides of the border. He said no viHYDERABAD: Peasants, who were recovered from a pri- able solution to Afghan imbroglio vate prison of a landlord of Tando Ghulam Ali, stage dem- could be drawn unless Pukhtuns were taken in confidence.—APP onstration against bonded labour.


Cabinet committee to consult people on Metro bus

French Embassy Fiction Prize 2014 awarded to Uzma Khan

MULTAN—A provincial cabinet committee will soon visit the city to consult people on the metro bus project with an aim to maximize its coverage and benefits, DCO Zahid Saleem Gondal said on Tuesday. He told APP that Chief Minister Shahbaz Sharif had approved the mega transport project but wanted to consult people and the committee would visit Multan in 15 days. He said that in his personal opinion the project should begin from Aziz Hotel Chowk and cover all congested and populated areas of the city where people faced problems in getting public transport. Officials said the metro bus would help address traffic problems besides the provision a quality means of transportat to people.—APP

OBSERVER REPORT ISLAMABAD —The French Embassy Fiction Prize was received by Uzma Aslam Khan the other day for her book “Thinner than skin”. The Ambassador of France Philippe Thiébaud has awarded the prize to the Pakistani writer during the fifth edition of the Karachi Literature Festival. The jury was composed of three members, professors, writers and literary journalists from Pakistan. In a joint statement, they have explained their choice for Uzma Aslam Khan’s book “Thinner than Skin”, selected “because of the eloquent and elegant way in which she reveals a myriad of different worlds with masterly restraint. The novel animates mountains, lakes, wind and fire and other elements of nature that echo the complex emotions of her characters. Through the carefully structured plot and the well wrought patterns of recurring images and incidents, emerge insights about homeland, belonging and dislocation, central to contemporary Pakistani life”. Uzma Aslam Khan is from Pakistan; she was born in Lahore and grew up between Karachi, Manila, Tokyo and New York. Thinner than skin is her fourth novel, it deals with the author’s favourite themes: nostalgia of the homeland for young overseas Pakistanis, war against terror, social values of the homeland and women’s condition. This is the first edition of the French Embassy Fiction Prize. Its objective is to promote Pakistani literature and particularly fiction writers. The books competing for this first edition of the prize were English language fiction novels written by Pakistani authors.

Quaid-e-Awam varsity convocation held N AWABSHAH —The 6th Convocation of Quaid-eAwam University of Engineering Science and Technology was held at the university campus. Senior Minister and Provincial Education Minister Nisar Ahmed Khuhro was the chief guest who awarded graduation degrees to 201 girls and boys. Faria Durrani of Electronics Department topped the faculty and received Gold medal, Best graduate Gold and Silver Medal, Imdad Shah Foundation Gold Medal, Laptop and also won Rs 60,000 cash award. Aqsa Fayyaz Pathan clinched the top position in Computer Science and received faculty top Gold medal, best graduate gold medal, silver medal and cash award of Rs 60,000. Muneeb Ayub Memon of Civil Department stood first in the faculty. While six students Kifayatullah of Enviroment Department, Syed Kifayat Hussain Shah of Mechincal Department, Muhammad Yousuf Shaikh of Electrical, Aneesur Rehman Kolachi of Computer Science, Mahria Khund of Information Technology, Iqrar Ali Pali of Mathematics were awarded silver medals on their outstanding performance from first to final year.—APP

Killer of eight gets death on eight counts SARGODHA—A special antiterrorism court on Tuesday awarded the death sentence on eight counts to an accused of murder of eight people. According to the prosecution, accused Afsar Khan along with Munawar, Ehsan, Muhammad Arshad, Majid, Haji Pathan, Mustansar Ali, Muhammad Akram, Nawaz, Qaiser, Anayat Ullah and others had gunned down eight persons including four women over a property dispute at Chak 6 NB, Bhalwal tehsil, on Eidul Fitr on August 21, 2012. The court sentenced Afsar Khan to death on eight counts and acquitted the coaccused.Three accused were killed in a police encounter while another had died in district jail.—APP

Cold, dry weather likely in most parts of country

ISLAMABAD: Ambassador of Japan to Pakistan Hiroshi Inomata and Ms. Nargis Sethi, Secretary of Economic Affairs Division signing an agreement for Japan to provide a grant of Rs.829m to build around 30 elementary-middle schools for girls in the rural areas of southern Sindh Province.

Pak-Japan ink MoU to promote education in rural Sindh ISLAMABAD—Pakistan and Japan here women education in the country. on Tuesday signed an agreement under which the later would expand girls’s education opportunities in Souther rural Sindh. In this connection, Secretary of Economic Affairs Division (EAD) Nargis Sethi and Ambassador of Japan to Pakistan Hiroshi Inomata inked an agreement here at EAD. According to agreement, Japan would provide a grant up to 808 million Japanese Yen ( Rs. 829 million or US$ 7.85 million), in order to implement “the Project for Upgrading Primary Girls Schools into Elementary Schools in Southern Rural Sindh”. In her opening remarks,Secretary of Economic Affairs Division (EAD) Nargis Sethi appreciated the economic ties between Pakistan and Japan and hoped that these would further be strengthened through enhanced cooperation between both friendly countries in field of education and people to people contacts in future. She said that Japan would give more assistance to all rural region of the country to establish the education institution for girls to promote the

Nagis Sheti said that under the programme, the Government of Japan would also help to build around 30 elementary-middle schools for girls in the rural areas of Southern Sindh Province. During signing ceremony, Ambassador Inomata observed that, in rural areas of Sindh Province, only 7% of girls between age 10 and 12 are enrolled in schools because there is not an enough number of girls’ schools at the elementary-middle level. He added that after the completion of this new project,additional 2400 girls will be accommodated in the elementary-middle schools. Ambassador Inomata said “the main objective of this project is to improve access to basic education for girls” and “this will help Pakistan achieve the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs).” He said that Priority of Japan government has to expanding education opportunities and development in different areas in Pakistan. He said that Japan has built around 530 schools so far in various parts of Pakistan since the commence-

ment of Japan’s official development assistance (ODA) program in Pakistan in 1954. He added that in this year 2014 marks 60th anniversary of Japan’s ODA in Pakistan and Prime Minister of Japan Shinzo Abe recently made a global commitment to implement ODA worth more than US$ 3 billion over the next three years to create “a society in which women shine.” Ambassador Inomata clearly indicated that this new project for Sindh is a part of Prime Minister Abe’s commitment. He emphasized the importance of promoting girls’ education in any society by saying “the more women are educated, the more their children are likely to get basic healthcare services and education.” He expressed his strong wish that girls to be educated in the new schools in Sindh would take leading roles in Pakistani society in future. In reply, on behalf of the Government of Pakistan, Secretary EAD Nargis Sethi expressed her sincere appreciation for Japan’s efforts in promoting education in Pakistan in the past and present.—APP

Cambridge-like system to improve KP education standard on card P ESHAWAR —The Education Department strong footing. Khyber Pakhtunkhwa is establishing a framework in which all its development partners would work in coherence for optimum utilization of resources and averting duplications. This was disclosed in a meeting between Minister Elementary and Secondary Education Mohammad Atif and Cambridge International Examinations, where Secretary Education Afzal Latif was also present, said a press release issued here. The Country Director Cambridge International Examinations Uzma Yousaf Zaka, Manager Cambridge English Language Zara Shahid Khan and School sector Manager Amir Baig briefed the Minister in detail about the working and capacity of their organization on this occasion. Both the sides discussed ways and means how to avail of the services and experiences of the Cambridge system for improvement of standard and reach of the education department in Pakhtunkhwa. The Minister Education KP informed that they wanted capacity building of their teachers in teaching Maths and English language at the primary level as they have started teaching through the medium of English from class-I, adding that they are also putting the assessment system on a

He explained that they wanted to make the workings of all boards of intermediate and secondary education (BISE) transparent and improve their capacity for scientific assessment of students on international lines. With regard to the training of teachers, the Minister Education said that it has been found that different donor organisations and their development partners were working in isolation from each other due to which neither the training needs nor its impact could be properly assessed. He said that the practice is also not cost effective, therefore, a proper and unified framework is chalked out and each development partner will take the responsibility. Both the Minister and Secretary Education briefed them in detail about the reforms agenda initiated for streamlining education system in the KP province while the representatives of Cambridge systems briefed them about the areas of their expertise. It was decided that both sides will continue their consultations with each other and soon specific tasks will be assigned to the Cambridge English and Cambridge Assessment so that their services and expertise are properly availed.—APP

LARKANA: Sindh IG Shahid Nadeem Baloch addressing police officers at Police Headquarters.

SBBU to open campus at Noshehro Feroze NOSHEHRO F EROZE—The Vice Chancellor of Shaheed Benazir Bhutto University (SBBU), Arshad Saleem Arain has said his university has the primary right to open its campus in the neighbouring Noshehro Feroze district more than any other distant university. Addressing a press conference here on Tuesday the VC said the SBBU could open campuses in Noshehro Feroze, Dadu or Sanghar districts due to proximity. He said Shah Abdul Latif University, Khairpur unnecessarily opposing the SBBU against opening its campus as the former has no proximate connection with the district.—APP

I SLAMABAD —Mainly cold and dry weather is expected in most parts of the country during next 24 hours with foggy conditions are continued to prevail in plain areas of Punjab during morning and night time. Met office reported here on Tuesday, continental air is prevailing over most parts of the country. In Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and Sindh, mainly cold and dry weather is expected in most parts of the provinces during next 24 hours. While in Balochistan mainly cold (very cold in north Balochistan) and dry weather is expected in most parts of the province during same time span. In Kashmir light rainsnow is expected at isolated places during next 24 hours whereas in Gilgit-Baltistan, mainly partly cloudy/cold and dry weather is expected in most parts of Gilgit-Baltistan.

The Lowest minimum Temperature recorded during last 24 hours are Kalam, Astore -11øC, Gupis, Kalat -07øC, Quetta, Hunza -06øC, Skardu, Drosh, Malamjabba -05øC, Chitral, Dir -04øC. Other Cities Minimum Temperatures are Islamabad

03øC, Lahore 04øC, Karachi 09øC, Peshawar 05øC, Quetta -06øC, Murree 03øC, Muzaffarabad 02øC, Gilgit -03øC, Faisalabad 05øC, Multan 08øC, Hyderabad 09øC. Rainfall(mm) during last 24 hours was Murree, Muzaffarabad 01 mm, Rawalakot and Balakot Trace.—APP

Position holders awarded P ESHAWAR —The position cation Programme, UoP, Prof holders of Bachelor of Education (B.Ed) examination 2013-14 held under the aegis of Distance Education, University of Peshawar (UoP) were decorated with distinction awards. Director Distance Edu-

Dr Hafiz Muhammad Inamullah distributed awards among the positionholders during an impressive ceremony held at Muslim Learning Academy Pabbi Nowshrea Centre.— APP

PML-N, PTI nominate candidates for by-polls JHANG—Pakistan Tehrik-eInsaf and Pakistan Muslim League Nawaz (PML-N) has nominated their candidates for by-polls in PP-81. The Pakistan Muslim League-N has awarded party ticket to Muhammad Khan Baloch while the PTI has nominated its candidate Syed Shabbar Raza advocate for by-polls. The seat was lying vacant after the disqualification of PML-N MPA Iftikhar Ahmed Khan in fake degree case. The election scheduled to be held on March 3.—APP

KTH approves promotion of 3 doctors PESHAWAR—A special meeting of the Management Council (IMC) of Khyber Teaching Hospital (KTH), Khyber Medical College (KMC), Khyber College of Dentistry (KCD) held here in the office of Chief Executive, KTH Professor Dr Inayat Shah Roghani in the chair. Besides, Special Assistant to Chief Minister, Professor Dr Mehr Taj Roghani, chief executives of KTH, KMC, KCD and members of KMC council, principal KCD, Medical Superintendent KTH, Director Finance, KTH, representatives of the department of finance, Justice (Retd) Mian Mohammad Ajmal and Iqbal Khattak also attended the meeting. On the recommendations of selection/promotion committee approved the promotion of the Professors of Medicines, resulting in Dr. Ghulam Shabir, Dr. Hashamuddin Azam was given promotion in light of his service record and seniority.—APP

ABBOTTABAD: Deputy Speaker National Assembly Murtaza Javaid Abbasi distributing cheques among 33 families of overseas Pakistanis during a ceremony organized by Overseas Pakistanis Foundation.

KP Govt to form NPA to preserve nature’s wealth

Govt to enhance capacity of wheat storage

H YDERABAD —Additional PESHAWAR—A high powered and autonomous “National Chief Secretary Food Sindh Parks Authority” (NPA) will be formed in Khyber Pakthunkhwa as the legislative bill to this effect was in final stages for presentation in the provincial legislature. Officials sources told APP on Tuesday that under this authority, proper management plans for each National Park will be made and a special “Youth Park Management” force will be trained to act as nature’s guards. The KP Government would double the National Parks in the province through consultation with the indigenous people who are historical custodians of these national parks. It will also commit that the area under protected areas goes from 11% to 15% of its area by 2018 and would surpass the MDG commitment made by Pakistan. A recreational “Wildlife Park” would be established in each district of the province that will provide awareness and also sensitize general public to this natural heritage. The KP will commit to a “Zero Carbon” growth by 2018 which would entail a high dependence on renewable energy and carbon sequestration through its vast forest area. By 2018, KP will expand its energy base by adding an additional 3000-4000 MW but will remain committed to clean energy by ensuring that, at least, 80% of its power generation is based on clean renewable energy namely hydro and solar energy, officials added. KP will bring online 356 community driven small hydro projects amounting to 35 MW in current fiscal year, officials said, adding these small units would provide direct job opportunities to communities as well as clean off-grid energy. They said a plan is being developed for starting a “Solar Roofs” project in Peshawar as well as a “Solar tube wells” projects for the farmers of KPK, adding both will generate green jobs.Carbon credits generated by this huge commitment to renewable and clean energy will be captured and capitalized through the international carbon market. Being the most climate vulnerable province of the country, KP govt will take the lead in developing a detailed vulnerability mapping and adaptation plan for the province.—APP

Naseer Jamali has informed that the government has launched a scheme of the restoration of wheat godowns of Food Department with an amount of Rs 999 million and after completion of the scheme, the capacity of wheat storage will be enhanced. At present, the wheat storage capacity of the godowns of Food Department is 0.65 million tons, he informed this while addressing a meeting of the officers of Sindh Food Department, representatives of Sindh Abadgar Board and Sindh Chamber of Agriculture at Ex-Nazim secretariat here Monday evening. The Additional Chief Secretary informed that Food Department will constitute district and taluka level committees under supervision of the Deputy Commissioners and Assistant Commissioners respectively in order to ensure transparency in distribution of gunny bags and wheat procurement during the current year. The government would not provide any special quota and the wheat procurement will be started from March 15, he said.—APP


CCI rightly focuses on coal

MEDIA WATCH

Credit card security

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LTHOUGH held belatedly, yet the meeting of the Council of Com mon Interests(CCI) on Tuesday took several important decisions, which, if implemented in letter and spirit, would hopefully go a long way in mitigating sufferings of the people, improve governance and address ills of the system. It is hoped that the remaining important issues including the already delayed national census, would be decided at the earliest as without basic data, no proper planning is possible. One of the decisions of the CCI pertained to provision of governmental guarantees for establishment of coal-fired power plants in the country, which would help exploit the country’s largest coal reserves in Thar. Other countries of the world especially India and China were producing most of their electricity through coal and as a result reaping the benefits but regrettably due to lack of vision, planning and corrupt practices, we pursued policy of setting up of oil based plants and as a consequence there is pressure on the precious foreign exchange reserves and the cost of electricity has also gone beyond the paying capacity of the ordinary consumers. There is, therefore, every reason to expedite utilization of the Thar coal for the purpose besides country-wide establishment of solar power parks and wind mills to rectify the energy mix. Similarly, some quarters were making the process of privatization controversial and this would have created problems during disinvestment of some of the state-owned entities in the months to come. Therefore, the endorsement of the privatization plan would improve prospects for successful progress towards the stated goal but the Opposition will have to exercise necessary vigilance to ensure that the national assets fetch due proceeds and the process is 100% transparent. Some of the entities were constant drain on the national kitty and their privatization should be on top of the list as we cannot afford luxuries at the cost of burden of taxes on the common man. There is rampant corruption and inefficiency of the highest order in the distribution companies and the answer really lies in their privatization and this should be done without wastage of further time. We would also point out that the latest approach of privatizing state owned entities to overcome budgetary deficit is fundamentally flawed and instead the objective should be to improve governance, end corruption and turn them profitable ventures.

Pakistan’s welcome agreement with Iraqi Air Force I

N a landmark development, Pakistan and Iraq, on Monday, signed two agreements for cooperation between Air Forces of the two countries. As per one agreement, Pakistan would provide assistance to Iraq in the fields of training and development while the other envisages sale of Super Mushakh aircraft to Iraqi Air Force. The two agreements have multi-dimensional significance in bilateral context and would bring the two countries back on the path of closer cooperation in different fields as they enjoyed before Gulf wars. Pakistan and Iraq had excellent ties extending to a number of areas but these received a visible setback because of the two wars. Speaking at the signing ceremony, Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif rightly pointed out that Pakistan Air Force has rich background of training personnel from friendly countries and it would, therefore, feel honoured to extend similar assistance to Iraq Air Force. The fact remains that PAF has always been an efficient and highly trained and motivated force, which contributed not only to strengthening of the national defence but also provided valuable assistance to brother and friendly countries in putting their forces on modern lines. The incumbent Air Chief Air Chief Marshal Tahir Rafiq Butt has infused new life to the force through a combination of measures that would surely improve its preparedness and capacity to deliver as per expectations of the nation in the 21st century. Apart from training, the hard work done by Air Force in the field of defence production despite odds created by geo-strategic factors, is paying dividends as more and more countries are giving orders for modern training aircraft. Of course, such deals involve some financial benefit as well but more important is the goodwill that such sales create about credibility and potential of Pakistan. It is pertinent to mention that in the past Pakistan had been extending training opportunities to friendly countries in institutions of Pakistan Army, Navy, PAF, Police, Foreign Affairs, Postal and Banking but the momentum could not be maintained due to the law and order problem. Once this phenomenon is over, it is expected that Pakistan would regain the glory of the past in this respect.

Crush foreign funded terrorists with force

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The ball is in Mukherjee’s court Rahul Gandhi, the Prime Minister came in the way of Mukherjee’s political ambiKuldip Nayar tions. It was up to Email:kuldipnayar09@gmail.com Mukherjee not to accept the post of President. But when he announced that he would RESIDENT Pranab not contest in the 2014 election, it Mukherjee has been making became clear that he was exasperspeeches verging on politics ated, waiting in the wings. Sonia from Day One. He has been com- Gandhi readily accepted the position menting on the problems confront- because he had himself cleared the ing the nation as if he is presiding deck for Rahul Gandhi. Mukjerjee over the affairs of the country. His had taken it for granted that the key Republic Day broadcast beats them role he had portrayed as a fire fighter all and has naturally evoked some during the troubled times that he angry comments. Several political could not be ignored for having parties like the Communist Party served the dynasty relentlessly. Unof India (CPI) have characterized fortunately, Mukherjee has not adthe speech as political. justed himself to the institution of What President Mukherjee President. He should refrain from says is generally correct. For ex- making such remarks which he ample, his remarks that populist could do so as a politician. I have anarchy is no substitute for gover- not liked the dharna by Aam Aadmi nance or that there is a rising trend Party’s chief minister Arvind of hypocrisy in public life are cor- Kejriwal on the demand of transferrect. But he forgets that he is only ring two police officials who had a constitutional head and has to reportedly insulted his Law Minisobserve the decorum which the ter Somnath Bharti. elected parliament and state legisBut Chief Minister Kejriwal has latures expect from a person who set a bad precedent by letting his occupies that position. Law Minister off the hook. He No doubt, he finds politics a fa- should have left it to the state chief miliar turf but he left it when he secretary to deal with “defiance” by was elected President. His griev- the police officials. His defence is ance with Congress president Sonia that he did not violate the constituGandhi may be genuine. But that tion. It is a strange logic when he is between her and him. The nation threw to wind the very letter and the is not concerned with what goes on spirit of the constitution which has in a political party. Mukherjee given all powers to the executive of would have been a natural succes- which he is only a figure head. sor after Prime Minister The chief minister’s defence Manmohan Singh steps down. Pre- that his dharna was not unconstitucisely this is the reason why a per- tional does not wash. He does not son who had wide contacts was realize that the middle class, his kicked upstairs. Sonia Gandhi’s forte, wants an orderly administradetermination to make her son, tion and feels let down over the tac-

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Yet the political leaders do that. That Mukherjee should also be doing so is a sad commentary on his sagacity and those like him. Yet another example is that Mukherjee’s silence when Mrs Gandhi imposed emergency in 1975. She delivered a severe blow to the institutions which her father, Jawaharlal Nehru, had fostered. Mukherjee was then a close collaborator of Sanjay Gandhi, an extra constitutional authority. The worst aspect of emergency was that morality was banished from politics. There was fear which made the then President, Fakruddin Ali Ahmed, to sign proclamation even before cabinet gave its approval. My experience is that a Prime Minister pays scant attention to a President. The constitution framers, who preferred parliamentary democracy to presidential form of government, have laid down what the President can do. But this has been nullified over the years because the Congress takes the President’s wishes for granted. By making political speeches, the occupant of Rashtrapati Bhavan only aggravates the problem. There is a very thin line dividing the right and the wrong, moral and immoral. Institutions are ought to protect that line. It is easy to say from the pulpit that such and such thing is dangerous to the country. However correct President Mukherjee’s observations may be, he should introspect whether what he did as a cabinet minister was correct, not only legally but also morally. The ball is in his court. —The writer is a veteran Indian journalist, syndicated columnist, human rights activist and author.

TTP dilemma

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OUR women died and three others suffered injuries when a suicide bomber blew himself up in a suburban village near Ring Road in Peshwar on Monday. Three teachers were killed in firing in Hangu by unidentified motorcyclists; six security personnel were injured in an attack on their convoy in North Waziristan; an explosive device was found in front of the house of a Qaumi Watan Party leader in Charsadda while detonators were recovered from a person in Swat. All these events on just one day speak volumes about the state of affairs and the motives of those behind the conspiracy to keep the country boiling. Such events are happening at a time when the dialogue process has begun with Taliban and both sides have noted positive progress. The fact that TTP has announced its disassociation from all these terrorist acts is a clear testimony that many other forces are at work to destabilize the country and undermine the peace moves. We have been emphasizing in these columns that apart from criminals that have sneaked into ranks of Taliban, there are foreign funded and trained elements advancing nefarious designs of our enemies. Taliban’s denial of involvement in terrorist acts these days is a further proof of existence of such elements and therefore, a mechanism should be evolved to expose them and deal with iron hand. Genuine peace would remain an elusive dream even if peace deal is signed with Taliban, if foreign agents and criminals are not crushed.

tics like dharna by the state chief minister. But why should President Mukherjee comment on political matters is really beyond me. President Mukherjee’s comment that the “government is not a charity shop” is criticism of the promises that the government makes to draw the electoral support. All political parties do so. Mukherjee was in the cabinet of Prime Minister Indira Gandhi when she raised the slogan of Garibi Hatao. The Manmohan Singh government has doled out favours to the DMK to sustain its support. It is an open secret how the CBI case against Mulayam Singh Yadav was withdrawn to get his party’s support. Mukherjee was part of the government when there was a quid pro quo to save Prime Minister Manmohan Singh’s government from falling. If President Mukherjee felt so strongly, as his criticism indicates, why did he not speak out at that time? His opposition would have meted because he was a senior leader. For example, his recovery of tax retrospectively dried up foreign investment. As Finance Minister, he should have anticipated the adverse effect his decision would have on investment. Even today when reasons for stagnation are adumbrated, Mukherjee’s name is mentioned repeatedly. He lives in the luxury of Rashtrapati Bhavan while the nation is paying the price for his follies. Mukherjee was a minister when Mrs Gandhi had stopped sending any paper to the then President Giani Zail Singh who differed with her on Punjab. What Mrs Gandhi did was a violation of the constitution. I wish Mukherjee had raised his voice then. The office of President is an institution which should not be disfigured.

Mukhtar Ahmed Butt Email:colmabutt39@hotmail.com

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VERY one knew talks with TTP is not bed of roses for just one main reason that they did not accept the constitution of Pakistan coupled with it demand for imposition of their own Sharia. Keeping this as a preamble it appears that government did not do its home work properly except that Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif always reiterated to bring terrorists to come to negotiating table with one condition that they should stop violence. Even other wise when you start negotiations the hostilities must stop on both sides is prerequisite of any talks, so there was nothing new about it. What the PM should have insisted that attacks throughout Pakistan must stop to prepare ground for peaceful talks, any way the game is lost due to lack of vision and understanding of the whole issue in its true perspective Unfortunately having accepted the talk offer TTP continued with their attacks suiting to their will and place of choosing mainly on the law enforcement agencies. When you stand at a weaker wicket the other side takes over the initiative and that is what happened in our case. The attacks were provoking and it was mainly to test our nerves and course of action. The TTP once again was the winner as we did not retaliate except requesting them to stop their activities as government is determined to give peace a chance. There is no denying the fact that the team announced by the government comprises of good people and renowned journalists. But this was the beginning of our wrong direction. The war on ter-

ror is not restricted to Khyber Pakhtoon Khawa (KPK) but has spread in all the provinces and TTP is already operating in all the provinces and attacking targets of their choosing. If that be the case was it not appropriate to nominate team comprising of seasoned politicians drawn from all the four provinces? Who is at stake? Not only the KPK? Not the media but the State? But once team was announced the government should have given some time frame to start negotiations and ask TTP to nominate its team and if there were any reservations the programme could be adjusted accordingly. When the list of their nominees was made public it revealed that they were not only the intermediaries all known sympathizers and having deep links with the TTP living in Pakistan. The government should have at the first instance not agreed and should have insisted to name team from TTP shura. Having accepted the nominees we were trapped badly and now there appears no way out except the dead lock in talks. Who does not know Maulana Abdul Aziz a controversial person known for his rigidity on certain issues? He was bent upon imposing his own sharia sitting in Lal Masjid and what happened once he challenged authority of the government is history duly recorded. Let us put in his words what he said” I will not take back my demand for the enforcement of Sharia law. If Maulana Samiul Haq and the Taliban want to kick me out of the committee, they can”. That simply means end of talks. The main purpose of these talks was to bring an end to blood shed and bring peace in Pakistan. Unfortunately the media that has become stake holder is not playing constructive role in this grave hour and continues to air talk shows that are cre-

ating more problems for the government. They must stop muddling in the talks as these are neither in the national interest nor helping the government to move towards smooth sailing towards talks. They should at least realize the gravity of the situation instead looking for ratings. At present there is total confusion in government ranks as a result the people of Pakistan are living in state of fear and terror that is hurting badly our economy rendering thousands of people out of job. Government having no alternative given Taliban a chance to come and sit and discuss the issue for durable and lasting peace. TTP must understand that no one can impose his self declared agenda without any justification. No government can allow state with in a state. The TTP must avail this opportunity and show their sincerity in the peace talks without wasting time as it is not in the interest of both the parties. No fighter groups challenging authority of state have ever succeeded against any government and ultimately they sit and talk and finally have to surrender and lay their arms after some give and take. As a gesture of good will let there be no more attacks on law enforcement agencies any where in the country, enough blood has been shed of innocent people on both sides without driving any advantage. After having agreed to talks the TTP should have refrained from attacks but series of terrorist attacks are in a bad taste and cast doubts about the intent and sincereity. Some of the recent examples are Bomb blast in Bannu, targeting military check post in R A Bazaar Rawalpindi and attack on Tablighi Markaz Peshawar We derive our ideology spirit and look towards home of Allah why we are not accepting the religious decree issued by Great Muftie-Azam Sheikh Abdul Aziz of

Saudi Arabia that suicide bombs are illegal (Haram). Our media has failed to project the brighter side of the issue at least they could motivate the terrorists to respect the constitution of Islamic Republic of Pakistan and persuade them to stop fighting their own people. Here a point may be raised that army is also attacking the terrorists, yes but army is only retaliating against the attacks to save innocent lives. There is no denying the fact that the TTP has gained strength due to certain political forces and parties by taking openly their sides and are busy in point scoring. This is no time to score points that too at the cost of indiscriminate killing of innocent people. Political parties must support the Government peace efforts in letter and spirit. They must stop point scoring against each others. The state is confronted with serious challenges and party lines need to be kept at side while decisions are made to end bloodshed and violence in the country. No amount of compensation can satisfy or substitute life of an individual. Our political forces should have pity on the people who are under constant threat and fire. TTP must understand that this is God given opportunity to settle the issues peacefully and stop challenging the writ of the government. Since independence they have been allowed free hand to handle their affairs according to tribal laws and there was no interference and everything was going on smoothly. They must realise he consequences and lay their arms before all options of peaceful dialogue are exhausted and they are taken to task by force, the last option of state. —The writer is Karachi-based political analyst.

F you worry about your privacy and carry a credit card, Tar get data breach ought to be a startling wake-up call. A massive theft from card-swiping machines between Nov.27 and Dec.18 took information such as numbers and names from about 40 million customers and compromised personal information — names, addresses, email addresses or phone numbers — from about 70 million. Although there may be overlap, perhaps one in four people in United States were exposed to fraud and potential loss of privacy. The data were siphoned off by crooks and sent abroad. How did it happen? According to John Mulligan, Target’s executive vice president and chief financial officer, who testified Feb. 4 before the Senate Judiciary Committee, intruders crept into Target’s network and installed malware designed to skim off credit- and debitcard information. How they did that is not known, although cybersecurity sleuth Brian Krebs has reported that they may have gotten into the network through a vendor to Target; vendor said it was a “victim of a sophisticated cyber attack operation.” The crooks then spread the stealthy malware to the point-of-sale machines. The data were skimmed off in the seconds after customers swiped their cards during the busy holiday season. Chastened, Mr. Mulligan told Senate panel that Target was accelerating a $100 million investment to convert to so-called chip-and-PIN technology that is more secure. He pledged that Target would have it in place early next year, six months earlier than planned. Mr. Mulligan’s response raises a larger question: Why isn’t the United States as a whole moving more quickly toward chip-and-PIN technology? The answer is that it is coming, next year, but the transition involves costs that stores, card companies and banks have been reluctant to bear. When Europeans adopted the technology more than a decade ago, they lacked a continent-wide online verification system, so the new approach made sense, allowing verification on site. But such an online verification system did exist in North America. Since then, however, the magnetic swipe cards have become much more vulnerable. The chip-and-PIN technology is now widely used in Europe and is being adopted around the world. These cards have data embedded on a chip, and the user inserts the card and inputs a personal identification number. This two-step verification process is more secure, although not ironclad, since the data still can be transmitted through networks and subject to theft. American Express, Discover, MasterCard and Visa have all announced plans to move toward a chip-and-PIN payments system, and after October 2015 merchants who don’t use the more secure technology will face greater liability for fraud and higher penalties. A next-generation technology, contact-less cards, is on the horizon. Consumers in the United States have generally been shielded from liability for fraud on their cards and have grown complacent. They ought to be angry at the industry’s lag. Privacy needs to be protected. — The Washington Post

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Lowering legal age of driving

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HE proposal to lower the driving age in the UAE to 16 or 17 is bound to generate much debate. The Federal Traffic Council is considering lowering the minimum age limit to obtain a driving licence with certain terms and conditions. A senior police official, backing the move, said if teenagers were allowed to get driving licences at 16 or 17, it would prevent them from driving dangerously. On the other hand, our roads would be much safer if those who drive dangerously are kept away from driving altogether. The UAE has a set of good regulations. Strict policing, issuing of fines and implementation of the laws that are already in place will ensure that those who drive without licences stay off the road. Driving on the highways requires a certain amount of maturity, presence of mind and judgement, all of which come with age and experience. Allowing those barely out of school to navigate the busy streets may not be in the best interests of the driver and could well put the lives of many road-users at risk. — Gulf News As soon as man is born he begins to die. —Proverb


Time to resolve Kashmir conflict Voice of the People Iqbal Khan Email:wonderous101@gmail.com

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HE Kashmir Valley on Sun day reeled under an unde clared curfew and shutdown on the first anniversary of the execution of parliament attack case convict Afzal Guru. There have been credible voices from within India that parliament attack was a false flag operation to portray the freedom struggle of Kashmiri people as a mosaic of terrorism. Presumably, the lone survivor who was also alleged as master mind of the event was hanged in an indecent haste to avoid embarrassment— indeed justice hurried is justice buried. As demonstrators clashed with the police in some places, over 500 people were detained on the first day of a three-day strike. More than 250 separatists were detained; an equal number of “stone-throwers” had already been taken into custody. Prominent leaders Syed Ali Shah Geelani, Bilal Gani Lone and Maulvi Abbas Ansari were placed under house arrest, JKLF chairman Yasin Malik and MLA Abdul Rashid Sheikh were arrested; Shabir Shah and Nayeem Khan were detained. Despite Indian hubris, it is reassuring that the UN continues to be available to mediate between Pakistan and India on the issue of Kashmir if the two request for such assistance. Coinciding with the Kashmir Solidarity day, a spokesperson for the UNSG Ban Ki-moon said, “On Kashmir, our good offices are available if both sides were to request that. And that remains the case today”. However, this approach by the UN is reflective of the overall passive attitude. Kashmir has been on the agenda of the world body for the last 65 years but it is regrettable that it has paid no worthwhile attention to resolve the matter. The position of playing any mediatory role if the two countries ask for it is fundamentally flawed and is an excuse to hide the partial attitude as it benefits only India. The UN needs to abandon its evasive posture on this issue and play

a proactive role. Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif on February 5 revived his offer of a meaningful dialogue to India to settle the lingering conflict. His emphasis that ‘he is open to any proposal on the Kashmir dispute’ is indicative of desire to find a solution earlier rather than later as per the aspirations of Kashmiri people. Pattern of one step forward and two backwards in bilateral diplomacy between Pakistan and India has perpetually trapped the people of Kashmir in their plight. There is a need to remove disappointment from the hearts of Kashmiri people. Now Nawaz Sharif has tried to get the ball moving by inviting the Indian leadership to resolve Kashmir dispute. The ultimate aim should be to present the people of Kashmir with a chance to determine their own fate. Nawaz Sharif has established his peace credentials by offering to India that Pakistan is willing to consider any proposal for the resolution of dispute. On Kashmir Solidarity day, people across Pakistan came out in large numbers to demonstrate their support for the right to self-determination for their brethren in Kashmir. Kashmiris in Azad Kashmir and around the world also held rallies and functions to highlight their just cause and draw the attention of the UN and international community to pay as much attention to their struggle as they did in South Sudan and East Timor. Now, 4th generation of Kashmiris is actively pursuing their struggle for self determination and they are committed to offer every sacrifice for their sacred mission. The peaceful, indigenous and wide spread uprisings of the Kashmiri people have clearly demonstrated that the issue of Jammu and Kashmir cannot be ignored. Thousands of Kashmiris have sacrificed their lives and many more have been languishing in Indian jails, yet they are steadfast and resolute. Kashmiris are under a perpetual siege, virtually living in an open prison. India needs to realize that in no way Kashmir issue can be put at the backburner. Pakistan’s domestic as well as foreign policy

has always been directed towards resolution of Kashmir issue. India has always denied the right of freedom to the innocent Kashmiri masses and tried to suppress their voice through arbitrary arrests and ruthless inhuman torture by using the instrument of Indian security forces. Periodic discovery of unidentified mass graves in Kashmir is also another dark chapter of Human Rights violations in IHK. Pakistan has always emphasized the necessity of a meaningful and constructive dialogue with India to resolve the Kashmir issue. On the eve of solidarity day, National Assembly of Pakistan expressed solidarity with Kashmiri people by unanimously passing a resolution: “The final settlement of Jammu and Kashmir should be in accordance with the aspirations of Kashmiri people through an independent and fair plebiscite...Rights of Kashmiri people regarding selfdetermination‚ speech and movement from one place to another should be respected.” In the same stride, foreign Secretary Aizaz Ahmed Chaudhry held briefings for European Union, P-5 and the OIC ambassadors posted in Islamabad. He emphasized that resolution of the Kashmir dispute was pivotal for ensuring peace and security in the region. Quaid-i-Azam Mohammad Ali Jinnah’s prophetic saying about Kashmir being jugular vein of Pakistan has proven true, as today Kashmir has become a matter of life and death for us, and the water of rivers coming from IHK side is a main source of survival for us. Without Kashmir, Pakistan is incomplete. A breakthrough may be possible on Kashmir issue in the Nawaz-Manmohan meeting during the latter’s expected visit to Pakistan. At this stage, it is essential that Kashmiri people should be taken into confidence regarding any dialogue between Pakistan and India over their fate. People of Kashmir consider themselves Pakistanis; they had moved a resolution in the state assembly of Kashmir in favour of accession to Pakistan on July 23, 1947,

22 days before independence. India violated that right of Kashmiri people by invading and occupying the sate in October 1947. People of Kashmir revolted and when thing became unmanageable, India referred the Kashmir case to UNO on January 1, 1948. UNSC immediately asked for the ceasefire and holding of plebiscite; both India and Pakistan accepted the resolutions. Ever since, Indian policy has been to gradually incorporate the state into its territory and erode the UN role for the resolution of Kashmir issue. Since 1990s, India has even disallowed the ‘United Nations Military Observer Group in India and Pakistan (UNMOGIP), to visit the Line of Control from the IHK side for monitoring of ceasefire violations. For the past two decades, India even tried to convince the UN members that, UN resolutions over Kashmir are no more valid, hence need deletion from its record. There is no country in the world, including India, that does not recognize Kashmir as a disputed territory; and there is no country in the world except India that does not want its resolution in line with the aspirations of the people of Kashmir. The simplest way to resolve the issue is to ask the people of Kashmir to express their choice. This is the way decent people and states behave; and this is the spirit of democracy. Time is now ripe to reinvigorate the campaign for settlement of Kashmir dispute. Chances of India ceding any space are remote. Prime Minister of Pakistan may give or accept fresh proposals on the issue; but; these must remain within the frame work of UN resolutions. Time has also come to induct the people of Kashmir, from both sides of the LOC into negotiations. However, talks must be meaningful and result oriented. There is no point in having talks for the sake of talks till doomsday. This is possible only if such dialogue is time bound. Writer is Consultant Policy and Strategic Response, IPRI. —The writer is a Consultant Policy & Strategic Response at IPRI.

Views From Abroad

How to save starving Syrians? Danny Postel, Nader Hashemi

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HE Syrian people are starv ing. According to the United Nations, about 800,000 civilians are currently under siege. In areas around the cities of Homs, Aleppo and Deir Ezzor and in parts of the capital, Damascus, no food, medical supplies or humanitarian aid can get in, and people can’t get out. Many have already died under these “starvation sieges” and hundreds of thousands teeter on the brink, subsisting on grass and weeds. In Damascus, a cleric has ruled that under these conditions, Muslims are permitted to eat normally forbidden animals like cats, dogs and donkeys. This is not a famine. Food is abundant just a few miles away from these besieged areas. Military forces — mainly the army of President Bashar al-Assad, but in some cases extremist anti-Assad militias — are preventing food and medicine from reaching trapped civilians. In addition to starving, many people in besieged areas have been stricken by diseases, including polio, but can’t get medical treatment because doctors can’t get through. This moral obscenity demands action by the international community. Any armed group that prevents humanitarian access — whether the Syrian regime’s forces or rebel militias — should be subject to coercive measures. France’s foreign minister, Laurent Fabius, has denounced the international community’s fail-

ure to prevent starvation as “absolutely scandalous” and is now calling for “much stronger action.” The news that France may propose a strong Security Council resolution is welcome, but Mr. Fabius hasn’t made clear whether such a measure would invoke Chapter VII of the United Nations Charter, which allows the Security Council to enforce its directives through military action. If it doesn’t, the resolution will be inadequate. The recent attacks on the convoys attempting to deliver humanitarian aid into the besieged city of Homs are a case in point: The lifting of the sieges can’t be left to the warring factions on the ground. An external, international force must be introduced to guarantee the safe passage of food and medicine to starving Syrian civilians. The Russian president, Vladimir V. Putin, remains a major obstacle. His government has vetoed three Security Council resolutions on Syria since October 2011 and Russia has said it would support measures on humanitarian issues only if Syria agrees to them. But Mr. Putin’s geostrategic calculations and Mr. Assad’s cold blooded recalcitrance cannot be allowed to stand in the way of thousands of Syrian civilians eating. If Russia blocks meaningful international action, and if the Assad regime or any rebel group refuses to allow humanitarian aid into the besieged areas, the sieges must be broken by any means necessary. We should invoke the Responsibility to Protect, the principle that if a state fails to protect its popula-

tions from mass atrocities — or is in fact the perpetrator of such crimes — the international community must step in to protect the victims, with the collective use of force authorized by the Security Council. And if a multinational force cannot be assembled, then at least some countries should step up and organize Syria’s democratically oriented rebel groups to provide the necessary force on the ground, with air cover from participating nations. There are precedents to follow. The American-led and United Nations-approved multinational effort in Somalia between December 1992 and May 1993 was authorized to use “all necessary measures” to guarantee the delivery of humanitarian aid. In retrospect, this all-butforgotten operation was largely successful in humanitarian terms. While public attention has focused on the “Black Hawk Down” battle of October 1993, a military failure, the strictly humanitarian goal of getting food to starving Somalis was in fact a success. Before any such operation begins, however, Mr. Assad and the rebel groups should be put on notice that they have 48 hours to lift the sieges. There are reasons to believe that the mere threat of coercive action would produce results. As we saw in September, the threat of force pushed the Assad regime to comply. Faced with President Obama’s threat of an imminent military strike last August, Mr. Assad, under Russian pressure, agreed to hand over his stockpile of chemical weapons (the same weapons he claimed he didn’t

have). A similar threat of force could once again compel both Mr. Assad’s government and extremist rebels to make a choice: Allow humanitarian aid to flow or be subject to attack. Invoking the responsibility to protect would also confront Russia with a choice: Convince Mr. Assad to lift the sieges or be left behind by an international community that is prepared to act. Humanitarian interventions typically occur when moral principles overlap with political interests. As we approach the third anniversary of the Syrian conflict, this alignment is taking shape. Growing global outrage over the humanitarian nightmare in Syria — replete with refugee flows, sarin gas, barrel bombs, and “industrial-scale” killings and torture, as revealed last month in a collection of 55,000 gut-wrenching photographs — has horrified the world. Using force to prevent starvation will not immediately resolve the crisis in Syria. It will, however, make a qualitative difference in the lives of hundreds of thousands of Syrian civilians. It will also send a clear message to the Syrian regime and the extremist militias: The international community, after three years of watching this moral and humanitarian catastrophe unfold from the sidelines, is finally prepared to act. The writers are associate director and director respectively of the Centre for Middle East Studies at the Josef Korbel School of International Studies at the University of Denver. — Courtesy: The New York Times

It’s all up to you..!

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scene that remains etched in my mind, is when as a child I had attended the funeral of a neighbor. An old man, who I had seen cycling everyday, working as a salesman. At the funeral, I suddenly saw his second son, a twenty five year old lad, taking a handful of earth and throwing it angrily at his fathers coffin which had been lowered into the grave, “Good riddance!” he mut-

tered under his breath. Later I accosted the man and asked him innocently why he had done something so crass and violent: “My father did nothing for us!” he shouted, “Otherwise I would not be where I am struggling without a degree!” “I saw your father working hard!” I said. “Not enough to give me a college degree!” he said. Now listen to another incident: His father abandoned the family when the child was an infant. His mother became a prostitute and the boy and his sister had to live with their grandmother. Early in life, he proved to be gifted for music and, with three other kids, he sang in the streets of New Orleans and his first gains were

the coins that were thrown to them. A Jewish family, who had immigrated from Lithuania to the USA, had pity for the 7-year-old boy and brought him into their home. Initially given ‘work’ in House, to feed this hungry child. Then he remained and slept in this Jewish family where, for the first time in his life, he was treated with kindness and tenderness. When he went to bed, lady sang him a Russian Lullaby that he would sing with her. Later, he learned to sing and play several Russian and Jewish songs. Over time, this boy worked hard. They gave him money to buy his first trumpet; as was the custom in the Jewish families, they sincerely admired his musical talent.

Later, when he became a professional musician and composer, he used these Jewish melodies in compositions, such as St. James Infirmary and Go Down, Moses. The little black boy grew up and wrote a book about his life, his determination to succeed and the family who had adopted him in 1907. He said, that it is in this family he had learned “how to live a real life of determination.’’ This little boy was Louis Armstrong, who sang the famous song, “What A Wonderful World!! He made the best use of his circumstances and did well. He did not blame fate. He realized it was all up to him..! —Email:bobsbanter@gmail.com

Big three bashing ..! JAVAID BASHIR

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e can bash the big three as much as we want, but the fact is that they have won. Now they will control the ICC and the game. Big bullies have scored the victory against the world of Cricket. It is a drone attack on the autonomy, sovereignty, integrity and independence of the ICC. We must say good bye to the gentle man’s game. It has changed everything. The image of the world body has been tarnished and a death-blow has been wielded to its supremacy and Power. It is the darkest day in the history of cricket. It is deplorable and outrageous incident. We strongly condemn it. Sri Nawassan has jubilantly claimed victory for Indian board. The loss of Pakistan is India’s gain. PCB and the present government failed to bloc the big three move. It is a big failure, and we must admit it. Pakistani cricket will suffer, due to the poor show of the management. This decision taken at the ICC meeting is death signal for the cricket fans and lovers of the game. It is a sad day, we can not shed tears over this bad loss. These big three will rule and benefit from it. South Africa betrayed Sri Lanka and Pakistan back stabbing at the last moment by changing its earlier position. The rest of the member nations will suffer at the hands of the biggies. They will no longer be the equal partners. The threesome will gain the lion’s share of the finances generated by the ICC. India would benefit the most from the ascendancy of the Big three on the ICC throne. We condemn this torrid affair, whish has torn asunder the world of cricket. —Karachi

Valentine’s Day MADIHA VIQUAR Valentine’s Day is round the corner and it can be observed that its preparations are in full swing. As usual gift shops are thronged with red balloons, teddy bears and chocolates, restaurants are offering special deals, and magazines are bringing out their exclusive Valentine issues. There would be a lot more to see when the day would actually arrive, especially on television and radio. Each year the media creates hype on this occasion and runs special Valentine’s transmissions all day long, which only spread vulgarity. I wonder why don’t we celebrate our own religious and cultural festivals with the same zeal as we do this Western feast, which is not even related to us? —Karachi

An elegy of Sindh Festival SALAR LATEEF I would like to let the nation know about the portrait of Sindh festival, which I came across while dreaming when Bilawal Bhutto Zardari announced to celebrate the event for 15 days to promote culture of Sindh. Nay! It would not be an error to say that PPP is the ruling party in Sindh for last almost seven years and if the head of PPP announces to celebrate such festival; it would become the great opportunity for people not to slip through their figure. I was dreaming while sleeping. There was an inauguration ceremony of Sindh Festival at Garhi Khuda Bux Bhutto, the leadership of PPP was gathered and there was the book-launching of different books, written on Shaheed Benazir Bhutto by some of the PPP leaders. The leading writers of world wrote various books on BB. Well-known production houses prepared documentaries on the life of Shaheed BB. It was a great scenario when I was dreaming. The cultural activities were in full swing across Sindh. There was also painting exhibitions, theatres, traditional programmes and competitions of regional games everywhere. The tent-city was built in Tharparkar for visitors. There were hotels on the boats, floating in Keenjhar Lake. It was an endless queue of visitors from abroad to enjoy the delicious fried fish at Al Manzar restaurant at the bank of Indus near Jamshoro. The Dolphin show was also at its peak in Sukkur whereas the hotels were reserved for fifteen days on account of Sindh Fest at Gorakh hill station. The students from globally recognized universities were busy in research on the verses of Shah Abdul Lateef Bhittai. The potters of Hala, Kashmore and Nasarpur became billionaires due to export of their handmade stuff. On the other hand, there were information desks for visitors at the airports, railway stations and bus terminals. What I was dreaming while I was in deep sleep; heart-touching scenario in which there was a restaurant, situated between the trees beside a pond, where a number of people were staring at the screen, fixed before them. It seemed as there would be an important announcement within few moments. After sometime, Ban Ki Mun appeared on the television screen. He seemed enthusiastic while announcing “The UN declared Sindh a cultural village of the world”. It seemed that the leading magazines of world would publish it as feature story. Alas! The dream remained a dream. The scenario of Sindh Fest is different, where there was neither any Sindhi touch in the inauguration nor there allowed classical artists of Sindh to even enter in the territories of ceremony. One can easily judge the image of Sindh Fest from the Sufi night where the singer was amusing onlookers by singing “Puraani Jeans”. The festi-

val has become the cause of insult of customs and values of Sindhis. This is all strange… —Via email

Concealed sacrifices MAHRUKH IBRAHIM “Freedom is what you do and what’s been done to you”. In 66 years of independence, each day, each minute, each second we loss our defenders, our true patriots, and it is being done to the one who really endures all those excruciating situations. When a soldier embraces martyrdom, he is paid homage with honour, when he comes back with success we call him ‘Ghazi’ to give him with honour for the rest of his life. But here I want to accentuate your attention towards those sneak protectors about whom nobody knows, who present their selves whole heartedly and imperil their lives without any intensive desire of fame, wealth and worldly comforts. People of intelligence spy agencies opt for perilous life, but never fear death because those who are slain in the path of ALLAH are not dead, they are alive but you don’t have cognition. Those institutions for whom they devote their lives, disown them at their crucial time; they are left forlorn instead of having intimate adherences. It is their ceaseless passion that despite of knowing very laws and rules of this profession, they join the service and present their utmost output. Their eyes are fixed on the eternities, their lives are only for Allah!! My deep hearted encomium and prayers are for those faithful brothers who drip each drop of their blood for the people and leave their real mothers behind for their Motherland. —Abbottabad

Being hopeful on talks F Z KHAN Thank God, the talks have finally started, though the road is bumpy. Then so what? The determined Prime Minister is likely to make headway. Despite ‘pressure’ from a cross section of society, media and intelligentsia, the government has shown its determination and commitment to holding dialogue with the militant leadership. The Prime Minister on the floor of National Assembly pledged to give peace another chance, set up a four-member committee to get in touch with the other side, and refused to give up on talks’ option despite the two of the five Taliban nominees, Imran Khan and Mufti Kifayatullah, opted out – a decision which dismayed the parliamentarians and Taliban alike. However the PM expressed his “utmost desire” that the committees formed by the government and TTP make headway. “We opted for the dialogue option after the Taliban made offers for talks for three consecutive days. The talks are being initiated with sincerity and seriousness. We took all political parties into confidence and announced the decision in Parliament. The entire country is focused on the success of these talks. We hope they will yield positive results”, he told senior journalists in Lahore. While the PM is directly supervising this process, the move is being considered to have a chance of success, not because the militants have a change of heart but because they must have realized by now that the war remains unwinnable for them. And the mood of the general public this time is increasingly aggressive in the face of terror upsurge. That the TTP has not nominated its representatives from within its organization but from the general public and political parties, the move is though apparently dubbed as clever, yet it leads to believe that the next round would include their actual representatives. The TTP move might have been an attempt to put the debate back into the public in order to divide it

again, yet the other side seems to have been left with no better option than to meet and talk, because the government, military and civil society have understandably reached a point where it is to be left with no option but to launch an all out and all encompassing decisive operation. Why TTP is for dialogue has a few reasons. Non-availability of TTP chief who lives in Afghanistan poses a threat to TTP unity. The sympathy it enjoyed within Pakistan is now dwindling. The impression that they are the hired guns of foreign powers has grown further. They are running short of suicide-bombers and foot soldiers; many of them are suffering from war fatigue also. Most of its foreigners’ wing has been wiped out in the recent air strikes. It is fast losing links with world terrorist organizations. So the option is to accept the emerging reality. The government seems to be working in tandem with the security apparatus with the Opposition at its back. The four-member body is performing the role of a conduit; it has the reputation of being pro-right, yet independent and pragmatic. It is our hope that the nation would hear good news soon. How long it would take to go on or end, the utmost care must however be taken that the transitory period wouldn’t allow the ‘other side’ to reassemble or regroup. —Islamabad

Ms Fair’s unfair conclusion ESCHMALL SARDAR American educationist Ms Christine Fair’s “Ten Fictions” speak of the mindset of treating a front-line ally as its stooge with whom strategic dialogue can’t be held, but only a “transactional relationship” can be maintained. She pleads for putting more weight on India’s side that has “disappointed” Washington by not allowing itself to playing “containChina” tool as it has not readied itself to putting at stake its over $100m trade with China. That’s why Hegel is compelled to call the Far East Asia as America’s pivot – the new strategic doctrine that is aimed at strengthening Japan and South Korea against China. Ms Fair is not fair in drawing conclusions that the Haqqani network and allied militant groups were and still are being aided by Pakistan. Everyone knows that Islamabad has been in the forefront when Americans wanted to open an office of the Taliban in Doha, and subsequent efforts to hold US-Taliban dialogues. Former COAS Gen Kayani’s various presentations in Rawalpindi, Kabul and Brussels were convincing. Gen McChrystal’s dissenting note pointed to the fact that war was not going to be won. More than 6,000 attacks by the Afghan Taliban across Afghanistan in the last eight months, and frequent body bags landed at the US soil gradually grew hatred against war amongst the Americans. Had there been a support from Pakistan’s side, how could there have been an equal number of attacks and deaths at the hands of Pakistani Taliban across Pakistan? It is unfair rather an insult to the sacrifices of Pakistanis. In fact Pakistan is not only victim of TTP terrorism fuelled by drone strikes, but also target of diplomatic and propaganda terrorism, that too in the line of ‘friendship’, whose most of the benefits were cashed in by Pakistan’s adversary India that, on the sidelines, perpetrated insurgent war in Balochistan. —Hayatabad, Peshawar

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

—Editor Email:editorial@pakobserver.net


Iran: Nuclear program ‘forever’, dismisses military talk

Is CAR becoming another Somalia? MISHA BOUTILIER

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D UBAI —President Hassan vember under which Tehran Rouhani dismissed a Western assertion that military force could yet solve a decade-old nuclear dispute if negotiations proved fruitless, pledging that Iran would pursue peaceful atomic research “forever”. In a speech marking the 35th anniversary of the 1979 Islamic revolution, Rouhani also attacked economic sanctions imposed by the West as “brutal, illegal and wrong” and said countries in the region had nothing to fear from Iran. Iran’s military test-fired two new domestically made missiles on Monday, a gesture of national resolve ahead of talks next week with world powers to try to reach an agreement on curbing Tehran’s nuclear program. Analysts said the missile test, and a reported plan by Iranian warships to cross the Atlantic to approach U.S. shores, were aimed at a placating Iranian hardliners opposed to talks with major powers intended to settle the nuclear dispute. Rouhani said Western officials continued to argue that if such discussions came to nothing, there was always the option of using military force against its nuclear facilities. “I say explicitly to those delusional people who say the military option is on the table, that they should change their glasses ... Our nation regards the language of threat as rude and offensive,” he said. “I want to expressly announce that the movement of the Iranian nation towards the peaks of scientific and technical progress and advancement, including peaceful nuclear technology, will be forever,” he added. Iran and six world powers struck an interim deal in No-

agreed to limit parts of its nuclear work in return for the easing of some international sanctions. Hardliners, unsettled by the foreign policy shift since Rouhani was elected in June, have repeatedly criticized the agreement. Iran’s most powerful authority, Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, has so far backed the deal. Farhang Jahanpour of Oxford University’s Faculty of Oriental Studies said the missile test was a message of reassurance aimed at Iranian hardliners wary of the deal. “The message is that ‘we are not surrendering, we are still OK, we are still winning points’. The idea is to blunt the criticism of those who don’t like the negotiations,” he said. Jahanpour said an announcement that Iran would send warships toward U.S. maritime borders also fell into the category of government “propaganda” aimed at a domestic audience each year on the revolution’s anniversary. Richard Weitz, Director of the Center for Political-Military Analysis at the Hudson Institute in the United States said the political message of the test was that “Iran can defend itself even without nuclear weapons”. “It would be helpful, from the proliferation point of view, if Iranian leaders genuinely believed this,” he said. Iran and the six powers will start negotiating a full agreement in Vienna on February 18. Easing of sanctions, imposed on Iran over its nuclear activities, began in late January. “What guarantees our country’s sovereignty is demonstrating full authority and defensive capabilities,” the letter said.— Reuters

Syrian citizens walk towards a bus to evacuate the battleground city of Homs. A Syrian Red Crescent official says around 300 more people were evacuated from besieged rebel-held neighborhoods of Syria’s third-largest city, Homs.

Abbas aide calls Kerry peace formula a recipe for failure RAMALLAH—A top Palestinian official the only way for them to politically be able Washington has said the framework agreesaid, a framework agreement being crafted by U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry to buttress troubled Israeli-Palestinian peace talks may be doomed to fail. Nabil Abu Rdeineh, spokesman to Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas, said the deal due to be submitted to the two sides in the coming weeks would be “useless” if it allowed them to nominally accept its principles but to express reservations. “Use of the word ‘reservations’ bogs down the peace process and the use of this concept in the past has got the process stuck,” Abu Rdeineh told Reuters. In an interview with The Washington Post last week, Kerry said that enabling Israeli and Palestinian leaders to “have some objection” to drafted parameters “is

to keep the negotiations moving”. Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu heads a governing coalition that includes a far-right party which could bolt over land-for-peace terms of any statehood deal with Palestinians. Abbas also faces political pressure not to bend on issues at the core of the decades-old conflict, such as the fate of Palestinian refugees and future of Jerusalem. Veterans of Abbas’s own Fatah party have been skeptical of his decision to restart talks with Israel, which resumed in July after a three-year break. Top officials have mooted a return to protests and even armed violence should they fail. The U.S.-backed negotiations are scheduled to expire at the end of April.

ment would be a basis to prolong the talks, but Palestinian officials have yet to accept any extension. Palestinians want a state in the West Bank and Gaza Strip, with East Jerusalem as its capital. Israel captured those areas in the 1967 war, and in 2005 pulled its troops and settlers out of the Gaza Strip land now hedged in by an Israeli blockade and run by Hamas Islamists opposed to Abbas’s peace efforts. Abu Rdeineh cautioned against the Kerry document traversing any Palestinian “red lines”. The Israeli leader is due to meet U.S. President Barack Obama next month in Washington, where they will discuss the negotiations along with U.S. efforts to ease tensions with Iran over its nuclear program.—Reuters

China, Taiwan agree to open Bosnia unrest puts spotlight offices after historic talks on broken peace accord

S ARAJEVO —Enver Mehmedovic spends his days behind an iron gate, guarding the factory he used to work in from its owner. Production lines that once produced ‘Dita’ detergent used in households up and down the former Yugoslavia now stand idle and Mehmedovic suspects that the tycoon from the Bosnian capital who bought the complex wants to sell off the machinery. “That’s what happened to all the other factories after they were privatized,” said Mehmedovic, a chemical engineer. Under socialist Yugoslavia, Tuzla in northeastern Bosnia was a hub for the metals and chemical industries. Today, the city’s industrial zone is a wasteland and home to one in five of Bosnia’s 27 percent registered unemployed. The mismanaged transition to capitalism in the town is replicated on a smaller scale in all the former republics of Yugoslavia, which splintered two decades ago. But Bosnia, where more than 100,000 people died in ethnic warfare between 1992-5, is different, and more dangerous. Days of unrest that began with a protest by workers from Dita and other idled factories last week in Tuzla have blown the lid on years of simmering post-war discontent. Rioters set fire to government buildings in some of Bosnia’s biggest cities - Sarajevo, Tuzla, Zenica and Mostar and several hundred people were injured, most of them police in clashes

Military plane crashes in Algeria, 103 dead

ALGIERS—A military transBEIJING—China and Taiwan, at odds for more end of a civil war. But economic ties have grown port plane crashed in eastern

than six decades, agreed at historic talks on Tuesday to set up representative offices as early as possible, though sensitive political issues like a formal peace treaty were not up for discussion. The talks between Taiwan’s Mainland Affairs Minister Wang Yu-chi and China’s Vice Foreign Minister Zhang Zhijun, who heads the Taiwan Affairs Office, were the first since the 1949 creation of the People’s Republic of China. They mark a big step towards expanding cross-strait dialogue beyond economic and trade issues. China’s ruling Communist Party considers Taiwan a renegade province and has never ruled out the use of force to bring the island under its wing after taking control of the mainland at the

considerably in recent years. Taiwan’s Wang described his meeting with Zhang, in the eastern Chinese city of Nanjing, as “an unimaginable occasion in earlier years”, China’s official Xinhua news agency reported. “Being able to sit down and talk is a really valuable opportunity, considering that the two sides were once almost at war,” Wang said. The mainland’s Zhang told Wang that both sides should have “a little more imagination” regarding relations. Despite the close economic ties, U.S.-armed and backed Taiwan remains a potential flashpoint and its recovery is a priority for China’s Communist Party, which is investing billions to modernize its military.—Reuters

with protesters. “We are in unchartered waters,” said Srecko Latal, head of the Sarajevo-based Social Overview Service think tank. The grievances - unemployment, corruption and political paralysis - have their roots in the deal that ended the war, divvying up power to stop the fighting between Orthodox Serbs, Catholic Croats and Muslim Bosniaks. The accord agreed at a U.S. air base in Dayton, Ohio, brought peace - and planted the seeds of a future crisis. Its highly-decentralized and dysfunctional system of powersharing has proven woefully unfit to steer Bosnia through economic transition or the process of integration with the European Union, to many their best hope of prosperity. To ignore the grievances of the Dita workers means to risk an even bigger explosion. To address them means opening up the peace deal, and a Pandora’s Box of competing agendas and ideas of how the country should be rearranged. “Europe will try to use this crisis as an opportunity,” a Western diplomat told Reuters. But while the violence may spur efforts to restructure the country, it also risks stirring the kind of ethnic undercurrents the protests have so far avoided.“I feel sorry for these buildings,” Hodzic said. “But it seems there’s no other way. This is the only lan- Wang Yu-chi, head of Taiwan’s Mainland Affairs Council, left, shakes hands with Zhang guage our politicians under- Zhijun, director of China’s Taiwan Affairs Office, right, before their meeting in Nanjing, in stand.”—Reuters eastern China’s Jiangsu Province.

Algeria on Tuesday, killing 103 people, the private Ennahar TV station said, citing “informed sources”. The plane crashed in a mountainous area in the Oum El Bouaghi province, about 500 km (300 miles) from the capital Algiers, the report added. The plane was carrying relatives of military personnel, it said. The authorities have yet to release a statement on the crash, and no official death toll was immediately available.—Reuters

US destroyer arrives in Spain for NATO shield MADRID—The first of four U.S. destroyers forming part of NATO’s new anti-missile shield for Europe has arrived at a southern Spanish naval base used by the U.S. Navy. A statement on NATO’s website said the USS Donald Cook, a multimission Missile Defense-capable Aegis Destroyer, arrived Tuesday at Rota base, where it will be permanently based. NATO said three similar ships will be sent to Rota over the next two years. The ships have advanced sensor capabilities and interceptor missiles that can detect and shoot down ballistic missiles. The shield system was designed to counter an Iranian missile threat. It also has elements in Romania, Poland and Turkey and an operational headquarters in Germany.—AP

Israel does not care about condemnation STUART LITTLEWOOD

I

’d like to share, especially with American readers, a great moment in the British Par liament on 5 February when the MP for Gorton, Manchester, Sir Gerald Kaufman, rose to speak in a debate on the humanitarian situation in Gaza. Here is what he said word for word so that you get the full flavor: “ I once led a delegation of 60 parliamentarians from 13 European Parliaments to Gaza. I could no longer do that today because Gaza is practically inaccessible. The Israelis try to lay the responsibility on the Egyptians, but although the Egyptians’ closing of the tunnels has caused great hardship, it is the Israelis who have imposed the blockade and are the occupying power. The culpability of the Israelis was demonstrated in the report to the U.N. by Richard Goldstone following Operation Cast Lead. After his report, he was harassed by Jewish organizations. At the end of a meeting I had with him in New York, his wife said to me, “It is good to meet another self-hating Jew.”

Again and again, Israel seeks to justify the vile injustices that it imposes on the people of Gaza and the west bank on the grounds of the holocaust. Last week, we commemorated the holocaust; 1.7 million Palestinians in Gaza are being penalized with that as the justification. That is unacceptable. The Israelis do not care about condemnation. They are self-righteous and complacent The statistics are appalling. There is fresh water for a few hours every five days. Fishing boats are not allowed to go out—in any case, what is the point, because the waters are so filthy that no fish they catch can be eaten? The Israelis are victimizing children above all. Half the population of this country is under the voting age. What is being done to those children—the lack of nutrition—is damaging not only their bodies and brains; it will go on for generation after generation. It is totally unacceptable that the Israelis should behave in such a way, but they do not care. Go to Tel Aviv, as I did not long ago, and watch them sitting complacently outside their pavement cafés. They do not give a damn about their fellow human beings perhaps half an hour

away. The right hon. Member for Banbury (Sir Tony Baldry) quoted the prime minister as saying that Gaza is a prison camp. It is all very well for him to say that, as he did, in Turkey— he was visiting a Muslim country—but what is he doing about it? Nothing, nothing, nothing! The time when we could condemn and think that that was enough has long passed. The Israelis do not care about condemnation. They are self-righteous and complacent. We must now take action against them. We must impose sanctions. If the spineless Obama will not do it, we must do it—even unilaterally. We must press the European community for it to be done. These people cannot be persuaded. We cannot appeal to their better nature when they do not have one. It is all very well saying, “Wicked, wicked Hamas.” Hamas is dreadful. I have met people from Hamas, but nothing it has done justifies punishing children, women and the sick as the Israelis are doing now. They must be stopped. As has been pointed out, there is a time limit for what we are talking about. The idea that things can go on, while we wait for a two-state

solution, is gone. Sooner or later, the Palestinians will say, “We are dying anyhow, so let us die for something.” Sir Gerald is one of the very few heroic figures in British politics. His family suffered horribly during the Holocaust. After the Israelis’ Operation Cast Lead against Gaza in 2008/9 in which they slaughtered 1400, mostly civilians including hundreds of children, he told the House of Commons: “My grandmother was ill in bed when the Nazis came to her home town. A German soldier shot her dead in her bed. My grandmother did not die to provide cover for Israeli soldiers murdering Palestinian grandmothers in Gaza.” XThe U.S. Congress is stuffed to the gunwales with Jews and Zionist stooges and hirelings. How is it that they are so taken in, or cowed, by the lie machine that few, if any, have the nerve or integrity to see the Israeli regime, like Kaufman, for what it is. If they did – and acted accordingly – there would be far less grief around the world. —Courtesy Alarabiya

he Central African Republic (CAR) is in the throes of an extreme political crisis that exploded in early December 2013 with mass killing in the streets of the capital Bangui. Despite a French military intervention under UN auspices, an increase in aid funding for the CAR and the accession of a new president committed to national reconciliation, the situation is still dire. UN officials warn that there is a “high risk of crimes against humanity and genocide,” and the French Ambassador to the UN, Gerard Araud, has emphasized that the 6,000 peacekeepers currently deployed are insufficient to quell violence between Muslim Seleka fighters and Christian anti-balaka militias. Given these events, it is perhaps time to revisit the idea that the CAR is a success story for conflict prevention. Some writers, most notably Hayes Brown of the popular liberal news platform Think Progress, have celebrated the rapid international response to the surge of violence in early December. Certainly, the international response to atrocities in the CAR has been far superior to the total inaction during the Rwandan genocide that now US Ambassador to the UN Samantha Power detailed so brilliantly. Still, this analogy in fact serves to mask the reality that the international response in the CAR has been too late and insufficient. In fact, the international community paid scant attention to the deteriorating security situation in the CAR from the Seleka takeover in January 2013 until December 2013. While the Security Council did meet to consider the crisis several times, it largely failed to take decisive action. Meanwhile, then-President Michel Djotodia was unable to control his Seleka rebel fighters, who rampaged throughout the country raping, killing, and pillaging. While arms exports from the United Kingdom and elsewhere flooded the country, hardly any states contributed to a fund to complete the disarmament process. Despite their best efforts, peacekeepers have proven unable to quell the sectarian violence by anti-balaka militias against Muslim civilians as Seleka rebels withdraw. In remote areas of the country, anti-balaka lynch mobs have driven tens of thousands of Muslims to flee. Certainly, the picture in the CAR is not all negative. President Catherine Samba-Panza promises to pursue reconciliation, and the country’s top religious leaders Archbishop Nzapalainga and Imam Kobine are working hard to promote the peace process. In addition, the UN Security Council has continued to stay engaged, and on Jan. 28 authorized the EU force and imposed targeted sanctions on atrocity perpetrators. UN officials and leading NGOs also deserve credit for mobilizing the fear of genocide and “never again” rhetoric to spur a rapid international response in December. However, if the CAR is to avoid becoming another Somalia, it needs not just a short-term military intervention to halt mass killing. Only long-term assistance with security, development, and building effective state institutions will effectively prevent future violence. —Courtesy Arab News

Either make peace with planet or destroy hard-won prosperity JEFFREY D. SACHS

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e have entered the Age of Sustainable Development. Either we make peace with the planet, or we destroy our hard-won prosperity. The choice seems obvious, but our actions speak louder than words. Humanity continues on a path of ruin, driven by short-term greed and ignorance. Much of the global environmental crisis stems from the world’s fossil-fuel-based energy system. More than 80 percent of all primary energy in the world comes from coal, oil, and gas. When these fossil fuels are burned, they emit carbon dioxide, which in turn changes the earth’s climate. The basic physics has been known for more than a century. Unfortunately, a few oil companies (ExxonMobil and Koch Industries are the most notorious) have devoted enormous resources to sowing confusion even where there is clear scientific consensus. But, in order to save the planet we know, and to preserve the world’s food supply and the well-being of future generations, there is no alternative to shifting to a new, low-carbon energy system. There are three parts to this transition. The first is improved energy efficiency, meaning that we should use much less energy to achieve the same level of well-being. For example, we can design our buildings to use sunlight and natural-air circulation so that they require far less commercial energy for heating, cooling, and ventilation. Second, we need to shift to solar, wind, hydro, nuclear, geothermal, and other forms of energy that are not based on fossil fuels. The technology exists to use these alternatives safely, affordably, and at a scale large enough to replace almost all of the coal, and much of the oil, that we use today. Only natural gas (the cleanest-burning fossil fuel) would remain a significant source of energy by mid-century. Finally, to the extent that we continue to rely on fossil fuels, we must capture the resulting CO2 emissions at power plants before they escape into the atmosphere. The captured CO2 would then be injected underground or under the ocean floor for safe long-term storage. Carbon capture and sequestration is being used successfully on a very small scale (mainly to enhance oil recovery in depleted wells). If (and only if) it proves successful for large-scale use, coal-dependent countries like China, India, and the United States could continue to use their reserves. American politicians have proved to be incapable of designing policies to shift the US to low-carbon energy use. Such policies would include a rising tax on CO2 emissions, large-scale research-and-development efforts in low-carbon technologies, a shift to electric vehicles, and regulations to phase out all coalfired power plants except those that install carbon capture and sequestration. Climate-change foes have spent billions of dollars to influence policymakers, support election campaigns by defenders of fossil fuels, and defeat candidates who dare to promote clean energy. The Republican Party as a whole attracts massive financial support from opponents of decarbonization, and these donors aggressively fight even the smallest step toward renewable energy. For their part, many Democratic members of the US Congress are also in the pro-fossil-fuel camp. A few big players in the energy industry, showing no concern for truth (much less for our children, who will bear the consequences of our present folly), have teamed up with Rupert Murdoch. Indeed, Murdoch, the Koch Brothers, and their allies behave just like Big Tobacco in denying scientific truths; even use the same experts for hire. The situation is generally the same around the world. Wherever powerful lobbies defend existing coal or oil interests, politicians typically are afraid to tell the truth about the need for low-carbon energy. And it needs to adopt energy-saving technologies that consume less commercial energy. The technologies are available and will get better and cheaper with use, if only fossil-fuel lobbies can be held at bay. If this happens, people around the world will discover something wonderful. Not only will they have saved the planet for the next generation; they will also enjoy sunshine and clean, healthy air. And they will ask what took so long when the earth itself was at dire risk. —Courtesy Shanghai Daily


In defence of army

26-km Metro track From Page 1 Islamabad Metro Project will be completed one month earlier than the Lahore’s Metro Project. Lahore Metro was completed in record eleven months and according to the official, when the project managers suggest a similar deadline for the Pindi Metro Bus, Shahbaz Sharif disagreed saying, “Since we have the expertise of the Lahore Project we should complete it in Rawalpindi in shorter period i.e. ten months.” December 28, 2014 is the date for inauguration of the Metro Bus, said the official. The chief minister has made it clear there would be no delay in the deadline, he said. Pakistan Observer has learnt that Commissioner Rawalpindi Division who is also Director General (DG), Rawalpindi Development Authority (RDA), Zahid Saeed has been assigned the task. Saeed has to his credit the successful execution of Lahore Metro Project. He has been brought to Rawalpindi for this specific purpose. To a question, the official said Metro Pindi-Islamabad Track starts from Saddar, Flashman Hotel and ends at the Pak Secretariat. From Flashman to Faizabad it will be constructed on elevated route. The 8.6 km distance (from Saddar to Faizabad) will be

covered in 15 minutes. At present it is being covered in 1 hour or a little less. From Faizabad the track turns left on the IJP Road (again elevated) and then towards right on the Agha Shahi Avenue (9th Avenue) Islamabad. In Islamabad however, Metro’s route will be on ground and it will cover some 14.5 km distance up to the Pak Secretariat. The city has turned into a hub of problems and the public representatives despite visiting Sasta Bazaars and holding open courts seem helpless before rising prices, traffic jams etc he further said. PML-N in 2013 elections lost besides three provincial assembly seats, two crucial seats of the National Assembly to Imran Khan Chairman of of Pakistan Tehrik-e-Insaf (PTI) and Sheikh Rashid Ahmed of President of the Awami Muslim League (AML). The PML-N leadership thinks it lost these seats due to the party’s internal tussle for power. With the provincial party president among them every week, the party’s local leaders will have to settle their internal differences and serve the people in letter and spirit, he further said.

Grenade attacks kill 13 From Page 1 goers and injuries to three dozen others. The Police said three explosions one after the other ripped through the hall of Shamma cinema when afternoon show was in progress. The reports say more than hundred people were present at the time of the blasts that played havoc in the cinema house that was damaged badly and thirteen people were reported killed while 25 others received serious injuries. Screening of a movie was underway at the cinema when three hand grenades went off in quick succession. Capital City Police Chief said adding the first hand grenade was detonated in the front row of the hall at 3.40 p.m., second in the rear seats followed by the third blast in last rows of the cinema house that is owned by the Bilore brothers of Awami National Party (ANP. The police and the rescue teams immediately rushed to the site of the blast and started shifting the blast victims to the Lady Reading Hospital (LRH) where emergency was declared. The doctors in the City’s major hospital, specially equipped to deal with the mass casualties, pronounced 13 people dead while 25 others were admitted for treatment with the condition of at least five people described as critical. The hospital sources said the blast victims aged between 20 to 35 years. The Police wondered as to how could the saboteurs managed to enter the cinema

Lone survivor From Page 1 ing. Preliminary reports indicated that poor weather was to blame, with heavy snow and strong winds sweeping the region in recent days, the APS news agency reported.—AFP

MQM fixes From Page 1 Oct 7, 2013 arrested 3 workers of the MQM, who had gone missing like other workers, which number had totaled 45 during past few months. MQM had raised its voice on all legal forums seeking help regarding safe recovery of the missing 45 workers but to no avail. A few days ago a senior MQM activist was going with his son on a motorcycle near Matric Board Office. Police stopped him and insulted him in front of his son on account of pillion riding. Police demand Rs. 10,000 as bribe.

house as owing to police cautions the security of the cinema houses in Peshawar was beefed up and spectators are subjected to body search at three stages. CCPO Peshawar Ejaz Khan said it was decided that filmgoers would be allowed to enter the cinema halls only after checking from metal detectors. The Bomb Disposal Squad (BDS) that collected evidence from the site also confirmed three China made bombs were used to carry explosions. Chairman Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaaf (PTI) Imran Khan has strongly condemned blasts in Peshawar cinema that killed 13 people and seriously injured more than 25 others. Imran Khan said these blasts are conspiracy to sabotage peace process in the country and ongoing parleys between the government and the militants. He also directed Khyber Pukhtunkhwa government to provide best medical facilities to the injured of the three blasts. The Khyber Pukhtunkhwa Governor Engineer Shaukatullah while condemning the blasts in Cinema in Peshawar on Tuesday, expressed his deep shock and sorrow over the loss of precious innocent lives. The Governor has described the tragic incident a highly inhuman act of terrorism and said that the elements involved in the cowardly act of terrorism will no more remain at large and no effort will be spared to bring them to court of law.

PM takes notice From Page 1 report from Inspector General Sindh within 24 hours regarding Fahd Aziz torture case. The Prime Minister also directed for tracing those involved in the torture. He issued the directives after MQM leader Dr. Farooq Sattar wrote a letter to the Prime Minister in this regard.

Meanwhile, the Sindh High Court Tuesday issued instructions against harassment of the Muttahida Qaumi Movement (MQM) activist Fahad Aziz who was picked up when he was escorting home his bride from the wedding ceremony and then allegedly subjected to torture.—Online

SC notices AG From Page 1 from the Election Commission of Pakistan asking the ratio of federal and provincial employees, posted during the course of general elections 2013. The cricketer-turned-politician had requested the court to order recounting and scrutiny of thumb impressions in four constituencies, including NA-110 Sialkot from where

Minister for Defence and Water and Power Khawaja Mohammad Asif got elected and NA-122 Lahore from where National Assembly Speaker Ayaz Sadiq won the election. The other two constituencies are NA-125 Lahore won by Railways Minister Khawaja Saad Rafiq and NA154 Lodhran bagged by Siddiq Khan Baloch.

To defend the country. All I know now, is that, his mother and father keep listening to his recorded voice on a cassette which he sent home from his training camp. Army is that segment of the country which sacrifices its own heartbeat, flesh and blood so that the inhabitants of the motherland live in peace. They weather grueling conditions, live in the sporadic clutches of death, they forsake their families for the love of the country, guarding the frontiers for the sake of ordinary civilians. The making of this gallant individual, is no mean feat. It requires rigorous training, massive discipline and extraordinary bravery on the part of the person to be groomed as a soldier. Ours are one of the best soldiers in the world. Pakistan has been recognized for its commendable gallantry by the UNO, which is why its army has been sent to different UN missions around the world. The life of a soldier is extremely demanding and testing. They have to obey the orders of their commanders. Engage in night long watches due to threat of enemy. Someone once said, that the freedom of a country depends on the courage of its soldiers. It sure does, and we are blessed citizens enjoying the fruits of liberty. Of late there has been a lot of growing criticism, towards our beloved army, that has in the last 64 years of independence, has had to clean up after regular intervals, the crises, misdeeds, and corruption of the civilian leadership. I am a diehard democrat. However, since childhood, I have witnessed economic growth and prosperity only when “military” has directly or in some manner ruled the country. An admission, I have to make and accept with a pinch of salt. Unfortunately, today, the militants and other stratas of the society are shamelessly mudslinging at our own armed forces. The print and

particularly the electronic media, which until recently, has unilaterally assumed to take charge of our lives and behoves of itself as the ultimate “angel” guardian of the truth, justice and fairplay, are criticizing at free will the most disciplined institution of our country- i.e. the armed forces. Why is our memory so short lived? Who took the country to war in 1965 and who participated in the 1971 crises? Who defended us against the enemies? Who tied grenades on their bellies and laid themselves on the pathway of the enemy’s roaring tanks? Sadly the politicians, who refused to accept the result of the only “free and fair” elections, colluded with civilian bureaucracy and the power hungry politicians to create the mess! It was the army that was responding to the call to clean up the dirty act! We need to realize that not all soldiers are Bonapartes. The handful of them is perhaps so, because they are compelled by the demands of civilians! And then they are labeled as such after a situation is created by the ruling class. A decade ago, while the usual morning transmission was being aired, on 6th September, I saw a live telecast of a widow of a Colonel Abbasi Shaheed - a valiant soldier who lost his life while defending the borders of our country. The gallant soldier was called to the front just under 8 weeks into his marriage. He responded and became a ‘shaheed’. Listening to the heartrending tale of the then young widow and her solemn conviction, that though she was a newlywed bride, she lost her beloved to the warm embrace of this country’s land, it broke me down into remorseful tears. She never remarried and bound herself to the memories of a love who laid his life for a greater love- a superior cause. Somebody, unknown to me, gave away his life to

US debates drone strike From Back Page Dame, said there is a school of thought that the Obama administration’s drone policy is “lawless.” “Why should the Justice Department issue the execution warrant for anyone abroad? The fact that they give extra scrutiny only because he’s an American exacerbates this negative impression,” O Connell said. U.S. drones have killed four Americans since 2009, including al-Awlaki, who the administration said was actively plotting to kill U.S. citizens. —AP

Contact made to Altaf: Qaim From Page 1 be gauged from this fact that more than 150 police officers and constables have been martyred in the reaction by terrorists. He said that if we compare the crime ratio with same period in last year we will find very much decline in the crime rate and added that this was because of the sacrifices being rendered by Sindh Police and Rangers corps. He said that during the operation thousands of criminals have been arrested challaned in the courts and many of them have been convicted.

Govt, TTP committees

From Page 1 protect me. I kept questioning myself, as to what have we as a nation given that young lady, who became emotionally tortured and bankrupt for being a companion to a soldier. After the 65’ war, as a young school boy, I sobbed bitterly, when I came across this woman from Jhelum, who then must have been approaching her eighties. In conversation, she was deeply lamenting, that if through ‘cease-fire’ and negotiations’ we were returning captured lands to the enemy and if we were surrendering after war, then why did she have to lose her only and beloved son to the cold hands of death in a futile combat. A ‘shaheed’s blood was lost in vain. For whose gain and for what cause? I could feel her anguish in my veins and it made me feel miserable at the helplessness that surrounded me. We, the citizens of this country, call upon our armed forces not only to counter enemy across but also the enemy within. We call them to assist in all the natural disasters that strike us. Our soldiers, even when there is not war, have not proved to stay idle. They have contributed in the construction works, such as building of roads, bridges and infrastructure. During the calamity ridden time of the earth quake the army mobilized its resources through its heroic soldiers who fervently helped in all the restoration endeavors of rebuilding the country. We must learn to respect and honor them for the nobility of acts they perform. They are unparalleled and extraordinary in the dispensation and integrity of their duties which is beyond the call of an ordinary being. Not all men in uniform are Bonapartes. They are men of character. Indeed there have been certain mistakes, but it is human to err. A few wrong directions don’t mean that the whole institution is to be dis-

29 Brigadiers promoted From Page 1 Naveed, Inf, Brig. Zafarullah, Inf, Brig Asim Munir, Inf, Brig. Fida Inf, Brig. Ihsan, Inf, Brig. Khalil Dar, Avn, Brig. Tariq Qudus, CMI, Brig, Shahzad, Ord, Brig. Shahzad, EME, Khalid Najam, AMC, Iftikhar Pervez, AMC, and Saleem Jehangir, AMC. It may be mentioned here the decision was made at the promotion board meeting held at the General Headquarters here. The meeting was headed by Chief of Army Staff General (COAS) Raheel Sharif and attended by all corps commanders, principal staff officers and senior army officials.—APP

Militants kidnap From Page 1

From Page 1 by Interior Minister Ch Nisar and Balochistan Chief Minister Dr Abdul Malik. Earlier, the government and Taliban committees held an informal meeting and they discussed the Taliban’s response to the demands of the government.

occupied the north of Mali in 2012 before they were partly driven from the region by a French-led military intervention in January last year.—AP

Govt committed From Page 1 Talking to the delegation Prime Minister Mian Nawaz Sharif has said scientific research and advanced and modern technology are catalyst for the economic development of the country. Chairman Pakistan Atomic Energy Commission Dr. Ansar Parvez and other government officials were present at the occasion.

Cop killed From Page 1 workers who are vaccinating against polio, accusing them of being spies. The violence has seriously hampered the immunization campaign in Pakistan, which is one of the three countries in the world where polio is endemic. The resistance to polio vaccination by Taliban militants stiffened after the May 2011 raid on Osama Bin Laden’s compound in northern Pakistan as revelations surfaced that the Central Intelligence Agency had used Dr. Shakil Afridi, a Pakistani doctor, to run a fake vaccination campaign to gain access into Bin Laden’s hide out.—Online

credited. I would like to state by quoting Mark Anthony (Shakespeare) I am no orator as Brutus is, but as you know me all, a plain blunt man, … for I have neither wit, nor worth, nor words, nor action, nor utterance, nor the power of speech, to stir men’s blood’ I only speak right on. Again to personal dislike, is acceptance of a reality and fact that under president Ayub Khan, Pakistan was seen as the fastest growing economic power house in entire South and South East Asia. Under president Zia the average GDP growth was 5-6% and in the regime of President Musharraf the GDP was in excess of 6%. While the armed forces are not to run the government or business, but they have a role to ensure the ‘stability of the state’. Epictetus, the stoic philosopher, once remarked, ‘no great thing is created suddenly, anymore than a

bunch of grapes or fig. if you desire a fig, I answer you that there must be time. Let it first blossom, then bear fruit, then ripen’. Of equal truth therefore is the sapling of democracy. Its growth and success is not dependant on bashing day in and day out, the most significant and stable institution of the country. On a conclusive note, at one time during American civil war, General McClellan, then in command of the union forces, was conducting a campaign. He was so careful to avoid mistakes that little headway was evident. President Lincoln there upon wrote him a letter, “My dear McClellan: if you don’t want to use the army, I should like to borrow it for a while. Yours respectfully, A. Lincoln”. With salute to our armed forces! —The author is a freelance contributor.

US envoy quits over conversion From Back Page looking after ambassadorial office. Reports say ‘after his resign, Stafford published an article in the Sudan Tribune and said, “My wife and I have been very fortunate to meet so many wonderful people throughout Sudan who share a strong desire and willingness to improve their communities.


Gas supply to 70pc areas of Punjab restored: SNGPL

3 terrorists killed by own bomb

Demonstrators hold anti-U.S. slogans and portraits of Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei during a rally in Tehran’s terrorists were killed on Tues- Azadi Square (Freedom Square) to mark the 35th anniversary of the Islamic Revolution on Tuesday. day when a device they were planting at a roadside exploded in Dera Ismail Khan, district of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa on Tuesday. According to local police, the incident took place near Pacha-abad area of Dera Ismail TEHRAN—Iran’s President Khan where three militants were planting IED device to target Hasan Rohani on Tuesday convoy of security forces which called for “fair and construcwas set to pass through the same tive” nuclear talks with world area. Police officials confirmed ISLAMABAD—Justice Jawwad hear whatever you say more. appear in main case. “ But I am powers as the nation marked that three terrorists belonged to S Khawaja has remarked that no The court separated review appearing on behalf of federal the anniversary of the 1979 banned outfit.—Online compromise can be made on the case from original case remark- and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa gov- Islamic revolution with massive rallies, complete with fundamental rights of the people. ing “we are adjourning the hear- ernment”, he said. Justice Jawwad observed anti-American and anti-IsHe gave these remarks Tues- ing till Thursday to the extent of 7-year-old girl “you are appearing on court no- raeli chants. day while presiding over a 3- this case. The crowd burned US and At the inception of hearing tice. “if the government is exmember bench of Supreme Court molested Israeli flags with pictures of of Yasin Shah son of Mohabbat empted from law, what you say (SC) during the hearing of reBAHAWALPUR—A man moPresident Barack Obama and lested a young girl and fled leav- view petition filed by ministry of Shah missing person case, about it”. Israel’s Prime Minister BenAAG Shah Khawar appeared Shah Khawar told that he defence against Apex court Deing her in critical situation here jamin Netanyahu and shouted before the court He told the was appearing on court’s nocember, 10, 2013 decision in on Tuesday. Police said that the “Down with the US” and court that federal government tice. “Defence ministry has incident took place in the sub- Mohabbat Shah case with refer“Death to Israel” — chants had filed review petition been affected due to your orence to 35 missing persons who urbs of main Bahawalpur city that are commonplace on against December, 10, 2013 der. Therefore, it has filed rewere picked up from Malakand. where a man kidnapped and most Iranian rallies but now verdict of SC. CMA has also view petition”, he added. JusHe further remarked “primaraped a seven-year-old daughcome against the backdrop of been filed but number has not tice Jawwad remarked “we faciae federal government is deter of his neighbour. The acRohani’s policy of outreach to been marked over it. hear you and give decision. claring itself exempted from law cused managed to escape the West. The court remarked “we Shah Khawar told” the matter and constitution. If it is so then throwing the victim girl near ask the office to mark the numgoes different when private Continued on Page 7 we will give decision after hearher residence. The affected girl was shifted to Victoria Hospi- ing Attorney General (AG) and ber. Shah Khawar told defence counsels come on both sides. Justice Jawwad S Khawaja tal and her condition was stated Additional Attorney General ministry has filed petition. Jus(AAG) Tariq Khokhar. We can tice Jawwad remarked “ Tariq remarked “ we hear Tariq to be critical.—INP not compromise on fundamen- Khokhar is not appearing. Khokhar and AG. Munir A Malik tal rights of the citizens. We will Shah Khawar told he would was AG at that time. —NNI

DERA ISMAIL KHAN—Three

Missing persons

SC can’t compromise on fundamental rights of citizens

NEC committee meeting

ISLAMABAD—The executive committee of the National Economic Council meeting to be held today is likely to approve different government projects worth Rs270 billion. Planning Commission sources said that the Federal Finance Minister, Ishaq Dar would preside over the NEC meeting. NEC meeting is likely to approve 16 different government projects in water, agriculture and power sectors.—Online

Sindh Assembly debate KARACHI—Sindh Assembly consumed 53 percent of the sitting time by discussing the provision of low quality education in the province during the fifth sitting of the 11th Session on Tuesday, says Free and Fair Election Network (FAFEN). One PML-F female legislator and one MQM MPA submitted two similar adjournment motions regarding the provision of low quality education in the province. Fourteen legislators - five from PPPP, followed by MQM 4, PML-F and PTI two each and PML one - participated in the debate. —NNI

3 activists nabbed Staff Reporter K ARACHI —Police had on Tuesday arrested 3 activists of banned religious outfit, who were identified as Umer, Zubair and Hammad. They were arrested from KBR area of the city during a raid. Police claimed to have recovered weapons from the possession of the arrested activists and had shifted them to an undisclosed location for further investigation.

President leaves for China on Feb 18 ISLAMABAD—President Mamnoon Hussain will pay official visit to China from 18-20 February, 2014. This is his first state visit abroad after assuming office of the President, and he will be the first dignitary to meet Chinese leadership after Chinese New Year celebrations (year of the horse). During the visit, President Mamnoon Hussain will hold summit-level talks with President Xi Jinping. He will also have meetings with Premier Li Keqiang and Mr. Zhang Dejiang, Chairman of the Standing Committee of the National People’s Congress of China besides interacting with senior officials and government functionaries. —NNI

Rohani for fair Nuclear talks

US Envoy quits over conversion to Islam

Taliban want Mullah Fazlullah to lead Pakistan ISLAMABAD—In a move that could affect ongoing peace talks with the government, the Pakistani Taliban has said it wants commander Mullah Fazlullah to lead the country. “In Pakistan, Mullah Fazlullah is leading us and he has all the qualities to lead the Pakistani nation,” said Shahidullah Shahid, spokesman of the banned Tehrik-e-Taliban Pakistan. Shahid further said in an interview with Newsweek Pakistan that the militants, who are fighting for Shariah (Islamic law) in Pakistan, consider Afghan Taliban spiritual leader Mullah Omar as their

“Amir-ul-Momineen” (leader of the faithful). The TTP is engaged in peace talks with the government and negotiators from both sides met for the first time last week to draw up a roadmap for dialogue. But Shahid said the TTP is at war with the government for two reasons – its “friendship” with the US and the continuation of the “un-Islamic democratic system”. “We want the establishment of Shariah in Pakistan; this was the reason that Pakistan was created,” he claimed. Shahid said his group is ready for a ceasefire but the government should announce it first. —INP

HAMEED SHAHEEN I SLAMABAD —US Charge d’Affaires posted in Sudan (Khartoum) Mr Joseph D Stafford has tendered his resignation following conversion to Islam, Turkish media said quoting Sudanese sources on Tuesday. Mr Joseph had visited Ansar Al-Sunnah headquarters in Sudan and had developed close relationship with Sudanese clerics via his visits. The US State Department has not yet confirmed or rejected their Envoy’s conversion to Islam or his resignation. US didn’t post full-status ambassador in Khartoum since 1998. Only Charge d’Affaires was

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RAHIMYAR KHAN—The Sui Northern Gas Pipelines Limited (SNGPL) authorities have announced that gas supply to the major areas of Punjab have been resumed after completing repair work on the 36 inch diameter pipeline here on Tuesday. The SNGPL sources said after the 36-inch diameter gas pipeline was repaired by the authority near Rahimyar Khan, domestic consumers witnessed improved gas pressure. However, gas supply to commercial and industrial zone is still suspended and it will take 24 to 36 hours for the remaining repair work to complete and resume supply to the commercial and industrial zones, the SNGPL officials said. Moreover, two committees have been formed to estimate the loss incurred due to the bombings that damaged three main gas supply pipelines in Rahimyar Khan on Sunday night by a banned outfit which caused a huge blaze which killed one woman besides gutting several houses located adjacent to scene of the explosion. In a major terror hit, Baloch Republican Army (BLA) blew up three major gas arteries late

on Sunday night in Yousafabad area, which sparked so big a fire that it engulfed the populated area located nearby. Reports stated that remote-controlled devices were used in the explosions which destroyed three out of the four pipelines within 30 minutes. The pipelines, carrying highly inflammable methane also called natural gas, burst into a massive ball of fire after the blasts. The blasts triggered an

inferno that covered the nearby fields, while Basti Afzal Hamid Khumbara was evacuated immediately, the sources added. A woman was killed in the blaze while many herds of cattle were also injured. The outlawed Baloch Republican Army (BRA) claimed responsibility for the explosions at the point supplying gas to Punjab from Sui, Qadirpur Sawan, Pir Koh and Loti gas fields.—INP

Maryam for strict merit in laptop, Qarz-e-Hasna schemes I SLAMABAD —Chairperson ture of the government. Prime Minister ’s Youth Programme, Maryam Nawaz Sharif on Tuesday directed the officers of PM’s laptop and Qarz-e-Hasna schemes to strictly follow merit and criteria at all levels of the schemes. Chairing two meetings of the authorities concerned, she also focused on impartial and transparent dispensation in this regard, so that only deserving individuals could benefit from this knowledge-friendly ges-

The Chairperson said,”We are a resource constrained nation. Therefore, it must be our top priority to make optimal use of our national resources,”. “We cannot afford any lapse as we are at make or mar stage in our national history, “, she added. Madam Maryam Nawaz Sharif also stressed upon making the eligibility criteria of this scheme, especially for the

Altaf informs Zardari about workers detention STAFF REPORTER KARACHI—There has been a telephonic conversation between MQM Leader Altaf Hussain and former president and the co-chairman of the Pakistan Peoples’ Party Asif Zardari. They discussed the law and order situation in Sindh and the inhuman acts committed by the police and the Rangers against the MQM workers. Hussain informed Zardari about the extra-judicial killings of the MQM workers, illegal arrests and detentions,

and subjecting them to barbaric torture in the custody. He told the former president that 45 MQM workers, including three sector members, went missing soon after they were arrested and no one knew anything about their whereabouts. Hussain said that the lawenforcing agencies were carrying out illegal raids at the houses of the MQM workers. The arrested workers were being asked to disclose information about workers of the Women’s Wing of the party which was very disturbing.

bachelor level students, broadbased to include all regions of country and all segments of society, so that it could accommodate maximum number of youth. She also gave elaborate instructions on the distribution mechanism of the scheme in line with the principles of merit, transparency and impartiality, and decided to distribute the tranche of laptops before the start of summer break in universities.—APP

SHC orders removal of sub-standard CNG cylinders STAFF REPORTER KARACHI—Sindh High Court on Tuesday passed an order according to which all sub-standard CNG cylinders should be removed form all vehicles within 15 days. A 2-member divisional bench of the SHC headed by Justice Irfan Saadat during a hearing pertaining to use of sub-standard CNG cylinders in private vehicles ordered the authorities concerned to ensure removal of such sub-standard CNG cylinders within 15 days. The SHC said that precious lives had been lost in accidents due to use of sub-standard CNG cylinders.

US debates drone strike on American terror suspect in Pakistan WASHINGTON—American citizen who is a member of al-Qaeda is actively planning attacks against Americans overseas, U.S. officials say, and the Obama administration is wrestling with whether to kill him with a drone strike and how to do so legally under its new stricter targeting policy issued last year. The CIA drones watching him cannot strike because he’s a U.S. citizen and the Justice Department must build a case against him, a task it hasn t completed. Four U.S. officials said the American suspected terrorist is in a country that refuses U.S. military action on its soil and that has proved unable to go after him. And President Barack Obama’s new policy says American suspected terrorists overseas can only be killed by the military, not the CIA, creating a policy conundrum for the White House.

Two of the officials described the man as an al-Qaida facilitator who has been directly responsible for deadly attacks against U.S. citizens overseas and who continues to plan attacks against them that would use improvised explosive devices. But one U.S. official said the Defense Department was divided over whether the man is dangerous enough to merit the potential domestic fallout of killing an American without charging him with a crime or trying him, and the potential international fallout of such an operation in a country that has been resistant to U.S. action. Another of the U.S. officials said the Pentagon did ultimately decide to recommend lethal action. The officials said the suspected terrorist is well-guarded and in a fairly remote location, so any unilateral attempt by U.S. troops to capture him would be risky and even more

politically explosive than a U.S. missile strike. Under new guidelines Obama addressed in a speech last year to calm anger overseas at the extent of the U.S. drone campaign, lethal force must only be used “to prevent or stop attacks against U.S. persons, and even then, only when capture is not feasible and no other reasonable alternatives exist to address the threat effectively.” The target must also pose “a continuing, imminent threat to U.S. persons” — the legal definition of catching someone in the act of plotting a lethal attack. The Associated Press has agreed to the government’s request to withhold the name of the country where the suspected terrorist is believed to be because officials said publishing it could interrupt ongoing counterterror operations. The officials spoke on condition of ano-

nymity because they were not authorized to discuss the classified drone targeting program publicly. House Intelligence committee chairman Mike Rogers, R-Mich., complained last week that a number of terrorist suspects were all but out of reach under the administration’s new rules that limit drone strikes based on the target’s nationality or location. Two of the U.S. officials said the Justice Department review of the American suspected terrorist started last fall. The senior administration official confirmed that the Justice Department was working to build a case for the president to review and decide the man’s fate. The official said, however, the legal procedure being followed is the same as when the U.S. killed militant cleric and former Virginia resident Anwar al-Awlaki by drone in Yemen in 2011, long before the new targeted killing policy

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

took effect. The official said the president could make an exception to his policy and authorize the CIA to strike on a onetime basis or authorize the Pentagon to act despite the possible objections of the country in question. The Justice Department, the Pentagon and the CIA declined to comment. If the target is an American citizen, the Justice Department is required to show that killing the person through military action is “legal and constitutional”— in this case, that the Pentagon can take action against the American, as the administration has ruled him an enemy combatant under the Authorization for Use of Military Force, a resolution Congress passed a week after the 9/11 attacks to target al-Qaida. Mary Ellen O Connell, a professor of international law at the University of Notre

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Older kids can teach younger peers to be healthy

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LEMENTARY school children who took part in a healthy living program with older peers reduced their waist sizes and showed improvements in selfesteem, according to a new Canadian study. In the so-called Healthy Buddies program, students learn about healthy foods, physical activity and positive body image from older kids, rather than adult teachers or coaches. Researchers say the program could potentially reduce rates of childhood obesity. “We recognized that in Manitoba and particularly in our northern regions rates of childhood obesity are fairly high,” Jonathan McGavock told Reuters Health. McGavock, from the University of Manitoba in Winnipeg, coauthored the study that was a collaboration between his university and policymakers in the province of Manitoba. “About one in three children are overweight or obese and in some communities it’s up to one in two, so 50 percent of our youth,” he said. McGavock said previous school-based interventions or afterschool programs hadn’t worked to reduce obesity.“A new model had come out where a group at the University of British Columbia (also in Canada) had developed a peer mentoring program that relied on older peers delivering the healthy liv-

ing messages to younger peers and it looked like it had worked,” McGavock said. He said early studies of the Healthy Buddies program looked promising, but Manitoba policymakers wanted stronger evidence and to see whether they could disseminate it widely across the province. The program features 21 weekly lessons focused on physical activity, healthy eating or positive body image using three slogans: “Go Move!”, “Go Fuel!” and “Go Feel Good!” In the fall of 2009, the researchers enrolled 647 students from 19 elementary schools in Manitoba in their study. Students from 10 schools were randomly selected to receive the Healthy Buddies curriculum and nine were put on a waiting list and served as a control group. About half of the students attended rural schools and 36 percent were overweight or obese. At the start of the study, the researchers measured kids’ waists, calculated their body mass index - a measure of weight relative to height - and assessed the children’s physical activity and fitness levels, self-esteem, knowledge of healthy living and eating habits. Teachers from each of the schools were trained in the program so they could deliver weekly lessons to students nine to 12 years old. Then, the students presented the same lessons to younger “buddies” who were six to eight years old.

Pak-China collaboration vital I SLAMABAD—Pakistan and China should work together in areas of mutual concerns to protect shared economic and strategic interests. Pakistani and Chinese scholars expressed these views in a roundtable session held at the Institute of Policy Studies (IPS) Islamabad during the visiting delegation of the Chinese People’s Association for Peace and Disarmament (CPAPD). A close collaboration is needed between the two countries vis-a-vis the regional scenario emerging in the wake of ISAF drawdown from Afghanistan, as well as for the success of initiatives such as PakChina Economic Corridor, the speakers said. Chen Huifan, head of the Chinese delegation and the deputy secretary-general of CPAPD, stressed that it is essential for the two countries to cement their ties further in political, economic and socio-cultural fields. She was of the view that the Pak-China Economic Corridor promises a lot of potential and both countries need to identify how they can work together in building such a mutually beneficial passage. Discussing the emerging scenario in Afghanistan, DG IPS Khalid Rahman said that it was difficult to predict the post-2014 scenario of the region as the agenda of United States was still not very clear. Their careful switching of words from “withdrawal of UN forces from Afghanistan” to “drawdown of forces” has made things more uncertain. The upcoming elections in the country alongside the possibility of consequent civil war also add to the complexity of situation. In the given scenario, he regarded China as a very significant player of a region and urged it to play a key role in the regional initiative to ensure national reconciliation in Afghanistan.—INP

Possession of G-14 plots I SLAMABAD —Allottees of Students travelling on the roopftop of a passenger bus in a hilly area may cause any mishap.

Auction of billboards brings Rs37.1m to CDA SHARAFAT KAZMI ISLAMABAD—On the direction of Chairman Capital Development Authority (CDA), Maroof Afzal, Directorate of Municipal Administration has auctioned nine (09) billboards, through an open and transparent bidding, installed at different locations of Islamabad. CDA would earn a sum of Rs.37.1 million from auc-

tion of these billboards. The auction was conducted by the committee supervised by Director Municipal Administration including officers of Audit and Finance Wing of CDA being its members. These billboards were licensed to its operators for a period of one year in the past, which earned CDA an amount of Rs.8.1 million. However, on the direction of

Chairman CDA, DMA has successfully conducted the auction of these billboard sites for Rs.37.1 million, which is 450 times higher than the previous income through license. The auction was participated by a large number of people. CDA has taken effective measures to ensure maximum participation of public in the open and transparent bidding of billboards.

Sector G-14 have urged authorities concerned for early possession of allotted plots. Talking to APP allottees of G-14 said that at the time of launching this sector, it was expected that within three to four years development of the sector will be completed and possession of their plots will be handed over. They said they are still awaiting the posession of their despite lapse of 10 years. They said that people were suffering a lot from delay in development of sub-sectors and facing residential problems as their investment has stuck up which they secured for their residence. Aasim, an allottee said that the encroachments by land mafia in all three subsectors of G-14 are still continuing.—APP

Ambassador of Argentina Rodolfo Martin J Saravia and others on the occasion of farewell reception for First Secretary Carlos Lopez Sanabria, at the Argentina Embassy.— PO Photo by Sultan Bashir

Hotline established for clean, green capital ISLAMABAD—Bringing to light practical measures for environmental protection in the capital, a hotline, 1334, has been established to report environmental violations to the Capital Development Authority (CDA). The Green and Clean Islamabad campaign achieved a major boost at the second public hearing convened by Senator Mushahid Hussain Sayed at the Parliament House and attended by Senator Farhatullah Babar, Senator Dr. Saeeda Iqbal, Senator Hidayatullah and MNA Maryam Aurangzeb. “Any citizen of Islamabad can report environmental violations witnessed by them by dialling the hotline at any time of the day and the CDA will take action within 24 hours,” Senator Mushahid Hussain stated. Senator Mushahid Hussain Sayed along with other members of the hearing lauded CDA’s “Green and Clean Islamabad” initiative as being timely and the need of the hour. “Pakistan is among the top 10 countries of the world listed to be environmentally vulnerable and has experienced intense weather aberrations with floods costing us US$ 15 billion in losses,” the Senator pointed out. Addressing the acute parking crisis in the city, Senator Mushahid Hussain called for specific parking garages to be allotted in every commercial area, given major expansions in the form of new plazas and malls. “Not only this, but there should also parking areas,

pathways and washrooms for physically challenged segments of the society,” the Senator added on a side note. Furthermore, a complete elimination of plastic bags would be an integral part of the Green and Clean campaign on which the government, private sector and public will join hands. Senator Mushahid Hussain Sayed obtained a deadline of 30th June, 2014 from the CDA for implementation its solid waste management plan for the city which produces 550 to 600 tons of waste every day with no permanent disposal system in place. With reference to the first public hearing, the CDA informed that all stone crushers will be demolished with the assistance of Rawalpindi administration and ICT. The Senator appreciated this and subsequently commissioned Sustainable Development Policy Institute with task of preparing compliance report on the 16 stone crushers. The public hearing drew great enthusiastic participation from the civil society and common citizens of Islamabad, particularly the leader of the Green Movement Islamabad, Christina Afridi and Dr. Dushka. Many complaints and violations were reported by these participants which were taken up on discussion with the CDA and the ministry. The next public hearing has been scheduled for 25th February which will follow up on the issues cited.— INP

Inter-school Maths Olympiads Pak-Turk Schools exploring students’ hidden talent ZUBAIR QURESHI ISLAMABAD—Pak-Turk Schools across Pakistan are striving for quality schooling, high educational standards and character building. This contributes not only to promotion of education sector but it is also cementing friendly ties between Pakistan and Turkey. Federal Minister for Science and Technology Zahid Hamid said this at a prize distribution ceremony held in

honour of the winners of the 9thh Inter-School Mathematics Olympiad (ISMO) Tuesday. He was the chief guest on the occasion. It was Pakistan’s largest mathematics Olympiad (ISMO) prize distribution ceremony and young students of class 5, 6, 7 & 8 were given prizes of more than Rs1 million. Chairman of Pak-Turk International Educational Foundation (CAG) Unal Tosur also addressed the gathering. Eminent scholars,

businessmen, government officials, heads of educational institutions, proud parents of the children and a large number of students attended the ceremony. The federal minister expressed his pleasure over the steps taken by the Pak Turk schools and colleges. “Such events to honour our young scholars provide our youth a chance to show their talent to the world. Friendship between Pakistan and Turkey is beyond time and borders,” he

Beginning from nothing to something Two days of Roots International Summit of Entrepreneurship made a mark with a number of renowned speakers and professionals conducting inspirational sessions with the young leaders of tomorrow. Students brought their most creative and innovative ideas to the table, where corporate leaders guided them. RISE 2014 is a roadmap for the future entrepreneurs. TiE and MIT Enterprise Forum joined hands with RIS for this mega conference that aspires to foster the entrepreneurial potential of youth. This one of its kind mega conference is a two days forum on career counseling, entrepreneurship and leadership based on the economics, international relations, media, business and global economy. The theme of the summit is a “cross-cultural exchange of young ideas concerning the future of entrepreneurship. Mr. Walid Mushtaq CEO RIS spoke to the budding entrepreneurs and said, “Roots International schools aims to encourage the young participants and motivate them to take charge of their future and become a unique individual who stands out in the crowd.” The event was graced by the various dignitaries from diplomatic and public community including the H.E. Lars Gunnar Wigemark Ambassador of European Union to Pakistan, H.E. Walid Ahmed Ali Ambassador of Palestine

to Pakistan, H.E Peter Heyward Australian High Commissioner to Pakistan, H.E. Rashad Duraaewo Mauritius High Commissioner to Pakistan and Dean of Diplomatic CorpsAmbassador of Argentine Republic to Pakistan H.E. Rodolfo J. Saravia, and Ms. Nadia Kamran Senior Cultural Affairs Specialist. The 2nd day included the interesting and interactive session of Mr. Uman Gulzari (Founder of “The Missing P”) Mr. Amir Anzur (Founder of the Webprenuer academy), Mr. Junaid Kalim (CEO Kalim Associates) Mr. Engr. Mansoor Malik- Founding Vice President of TiE and Mr. Usman Pasha (Webpreneur), Ms. Judith Raven (Representative US Embassy). The other speakers who participated included Mr. Malik Mirza, Mr. Abdul Samad Khan (CEO Youth Impact), Mr. Kamran Rizvi (Director School of Leadership), Mr. Waleed Anwer and Mr. Muhammad Malick (TV Host). H.E. Mr. Lars Gunnar Wigemark delightfully gave a half an hour presentation. The theme of the conference was ‘The Beginning from Nothing to Something!’ which has assist the budding entrepreneurs in setting up the foundation for their future enterprise. RISE 2014 has creates a platform for the youth of today to channelize their positive energies and entrepreneurial skills.

said adding he strongly believed in the services being rendered by the Pak-Turk Schools. “Two countries, One nation” is the slogan that explains the spirit of friendship between the two nations, he said. In the end, Federal Minister gave away prizes among the students of various schools. In class 5 category Mujtaba Omar of Sideeq Public School Rawalpindi secured first position. In class 6 Daniyal Ali of IIU School I-8 Campus Islamabad; class 7, Omar Mahmud of Karachi Grammar School won the first prizes. Likewise, in class 8 category M Ashhad Alam of BVS Parsi High School Karachi bagged first prize.


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Brothers in Islam establish

February 12 Launching Ceremony of Building Energy Code of Pakistan by Pakistan Engineering Council (PEC) in collaboration with ENERCON and M/oo Hosing and Works 12 th February 2014 (Wednesday), 1100hours at Serena Hotel, Islamabad. ****** Inauguration Ceremony of ‘Visual art Exhibition of Photographs’ by the Survivors of Acid Attack, trained by Acid Survivors Foundation (ASF) under the USAID supported Gender Equity Program of Aurat Foundation, on February 12, 2014 at Pakistan National Council of arts (PNCA), Islamabad at 4: 00pm

Chairman Senate visits ‘Bohra Jamaat Khana’ R AWA L P I N D I —Chairman Senate Syed Nayyer Hussain Bukhari Tuesday visited Bohra Jamaat Khana here and condoled death of their spiritual leader Dr Syedna Burhanuddin, who died on January 17 in India. He expressed grief and sorrow over the sad demise of Burhanuddin with the community’s Rawalpindichapter leader Ibrahim Jaffar and devotees present on the occasion. In his comments in the condolence book, he lauded the services of the late for the community and the country.Talking to APP, Bukhari said services of late Burhanuddin for promoting culture of peace, love and tolerance would long be remembered. Te r m i n g death of Burhanuddin as “great loss” to humanity, the Chairman hoped that the community members would follow in the footprints of their leader and continue to play a positive role in society. APP

CERN, HEC discuss to develop Pakistan’s research potential CITY REPORTER ISLAMABAD—European Organization for Nuclear Research (CERN) and Higher Education Commission discussed possibilities to develop Pakistan’s research potential A fourmember delegation of the European Organization for Nuclear Research (CERN) visited Higher Education Commission Secretariat at Islamabad on Tuesday, and held a meeting with Dr. Mukhtar Ahmed, Executive Director HEC. Dr. Ansar Parvez, Chairman, Pakistan Atomic Energy Commission (PAEC) and senior management of HEC were also present on the occasion. Headed by Dr. Sergio Bertolucci, Director CERN, the team included Dr. Rudiger Voss, Head of International Relations, Mr. Claude Crottaz, Head of Training, Science and Space Travel, and Ms. Margaret Susan Foffano, Scientific Secretary. Both sides discussed future collaborations in enabling faculty members from universities to conduct research at CERN facility in Switzerland. Different HEC initiatives for supporting research and split PhD programme were discussed. Dr. Mukhtar Ahmed apprised the CERN team of various initiatives of HEC undertaken for promotion of research, innovation as well as increasing access and ensuring quality. He said that HEC initiatives have brought about a paradigm shift in the higher education sector of Pakistan. “Access rate of higher education has improved from 2.6 per cent to eight per cent and gender equity had also improved and now stands at 54-46 per cent.” He shared with the visitors different HEC initiatives including National Research Programme for Universities (NRPU), Pakistan-US Science and Technology Cooperation Programme, grants for presenting research international conferences, establishment of technology incubation centres and Offices of Research, Innovation and Commercialization (ORICs) at universities as well as mega IT projects like Pakistan Education and Research Network (PERN), Digital Library and Video Conferencing facility. Dr. Bertolucci said that we are looking forward for collaboration in research and development possibilities in science

and technology in general and Physics in particular. “CERN is a major S&T funding Agency and would like to know the work done by HEC in the higher education sector and extend its support for advancement of higher education and research in Pakistan,” said Dr. Bertolucci. Pakistan has recently applied for the Associate Membership of CERN to increase collaboration level between Pakistan and CERN. The delegation showed interest in visiting different universities, scientific organization and industrial complexes in the country so as to understand the education system and organization of Physical Science. CERN, located in Geneva, Switzerland, is one of the world’s leading scientific organization which has been conducting research on High Energy Practice Physics Science since its inception in 1954. The CERN members include 20 European Countries, namely, Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Czech Republic, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungry, Italy, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Slovak Republic, Spain, Delegation of European Organization for Nuclear Research (CERN) led by its Director Dr. Sergio Bertolucci visited Sweden, Switzerland, and Higher Education Commission of Pakistan on Tuesday. United Kingdom.

Pakistan offers cooperation in raising Bosnia’s maritime force CITY REPORTER R AWALPINDI —Pakistan on Tuesday offered its cooperation to Bosnia in raising maritime force, training its crew, maintaining naval assets and enhancing overhaul and repair capacity. In a meeting with Bosnian Ambassador to Paksitan, Nedim Mekarevic here, Federal Defence Secretary, Lt. Gen.(Retd) Asif Yasin Malik said that shipping industry in Pakistan was quite significant. He said that Pakistan had technical manpower and skilled workers to provide support in repair and maintenance, adding, “The capacity of which can be exploited.” While further briefing the distinguished guest, the Defence Secretary said that Pakistan defence industry was

now highly developed and capable of producing low cost and high quality equipment. “We have acquired technology of highest standards at competitive price”, he added. The Bosnian Ambassador appreciated the level of skill and technology and hoped that previous draft agreements between the two countries would be worked towards early finalization. Bosnia and Pakistan had many avenues of cooperation to be explored, he said and added,”We can cooperate in trainings, joint ventures, education, technical literature, joint exercises for disaster management.” Both the sides emphasized to enhance defence collaboration and cooperation.

Justice (r) Khalil-ur-Rehman visits IIUI ISLAMABAD—On the initiation of President coming plans of the university in detail. He International Islamic University Islamabad (IIUI) Prof Dr. Ahmed Yousif Al-Draiweesh, former Justice of Supreme Court of Pakistan and former Rector IIUI Justice (Retd) Khalil-ur-Rehman visited Faisal Masjid Campus on Tuesday. On the occasion President warmly welcomed the guest on his arrival. In meeting the university president briefed Khalil-ur-Rehman about the resent educational achievements and up-

also mentioned the services of Justice (Retd) Khalil-ur-Rehman which he performed while he was a rector of IIUI and said university would taking benefits of his decisions and experience. Khalilur-Rehman admired the efforts and steps taken by Dr. Al-Draiweesh for the up-lifting the standard of education in IIUI and hoped university would get progress by leap and bounds. —INP

Police crackdown on criminals R AWALPINDI —Rawalpindi Police on Tuesday claimed to have arrested nine lawbreakers, 10 Proclaimed Offenders (POs), one court absconder and four Afghan nationals besides recovering 475 grams charras, two bottles of liquor, 10 liter wine, three pistols 30 bore with 10 rounds and one MP5 rifle from their possessions. According to details, Kashif, Zubair and Shahid were held for having drugs while Irfan and Shafqat were sent behind the bars for possessing liquor bottles. Other accused identified as Ali, Farooq, Riaz and Nadeem were apprehended for carrying illegal weapons. Police under its search operation conducted raids and held 10 POs and one court absconders. Meanwhile, Cantt police arrested four Afghan nationals namely Zabta, Zafar Khan, Hazrat Gul and Lal, under section 14 of foreign act. According to Rawalpindi police spokesman, search operations on the special directives of Regional Police Officer (RPO) Rawalpindi Akhtar Umar Hayat Lalika against Proclaimed Offenders (POs), Court Absconders and Afghan nationals residing illegally here, are being conducted in different areas of the city under the supervision of Senior Superintendent Police (SSP) Operations.—APP

President International Islamic University Islamabad. Dr. Ahmed Yousif Al-Draiweesh presentating shield to Justice (R) Khalil-ur- Rehman Khan.

Shireen Mazari condemns picking up of Kareem Khan ISLAMABAD—Central Secretary Information tect its citizens but also its possible comPTI, Shireen Mazari, on Tuesday condemned the picking up by people in police uniform of drone victim Kareem Khan on 5th February from Rawalpindi. He was going to go to Brussels to testify before the EU parliament. This is shocking Mazari said, that victims of terror are now being terrorised. Kareem Khan was with his family when he was picked up and now no agency or police authority is willing to accept this illegal action and clearly illegal detention. Mazari stated that he was one of the main witnesses against the CIA’s war crime of drones and had lost his son and brother (a teacher) in a drone attack in 2009. Kareem Khan had also filed legal proceedings against the Govt of Pakistan for their failure to investigate the deaths of his son and brother in the drone strike. Mazari added that it was of serious concern that a citizen can simply be picked up by a group of men some in uniform and others which reflects not only the state’s failure to pro-

plicity in the illegal act. The men did not disclose their identities and no reason was given for the detention. Kareem Khan’s wife and young children were present at the time, as was a neighbour. Now the family is running from pillar to post unsuccessfully trying to locate Kareem Khan or ascertain the reasons for his being picked up and detained. Mazari pointed out that Kareem Khan had requested that the courts order the Pakistani police to launch a criminal investigation into the drone strike that killed his son and brother, arguing it constitutes murder under domestic law. The next hearing before the IHC was for today. She demanded the government immediately produce and release Kareem Khan as his detention is clearly designed to terrorise other surviving drone victims into silence. This is contrary to the Constitution which obligates the state to protect the lives of all its citizens, she concluded. NNI

CAA emergency exercise today STAFF REPORTER

TMA issues final notices to rent defaulters

RAWALPINDI—Rawal Town Municipal Ad- business in the shops of Tehsil MuniciISLAMABAD—The manage- ministration (RTMA) has issued final no- pal Administration (TMA) has been ment of the Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) Benazir Bhutto International Air Port is conducting Full Scale Airport Emergency Exercise Aircon-14 at Airport today (Wednesday). According to a press release issued Tuesday, the main object of the biannual exercise is to educate/prepare safety measures in case of Emergency.

tices to its rent defaulters and the tenants were directed that the outstanding dues should be cleared till Feb 15 otherwise, the shops would be sealed. Rawal Town Administration would launch crackdowns on rent defaulters from Feb 17 and stern action in accordance with the law would be taken against the defaulters. A special campaign to recover outstanding dues from the tenants, running their

launched. Administrator Rawal Town had issued special directives for the recovery of outstanding dues from the tenants and asked the Taxation Officer that if the due payments are not cleared by the shopkeepers within stipulated time frame then strict action should be taken against the defaulters. After the decision taken in this regard, the defaulters have been issued final notices for the payment. —APP


Muhammad Afzal Guru death anniversary

Severe restrictions signify IHK govt’s fear, frustration: Tabassum SRINAGAR—Tabassum Guru, the wife of Muhammad Afzal Guru, has accused the government of being “scared of his fame’ and decried imposing strict restrictions to foil condolence meeting at his native village in Sopore area of north Kashmir. “Even after Afzal sahib’s death, government is scared of his fame. Severe restrictions signify government’s fear and frustration,” Tabassum told GKNS. She said on Afzal’s death anniversary, a condolence meeting was scheduled to be held at his Seer residence. “Due to strict restrictions, nobody could reach to our home. But our whole family including my son Ghalib and some people of the village held Dua Majlis (prayers) for peace to Afzal sahib’s soul,” she said. “To put it straight and with utmost honesty, the true story is Afzal was working with a medical company. To carry out his medical business he used to visit Delhi quit often. On 17th of December 2001, exactly at 8 p.m. Afzal Sahib called me. This was the last time I spoke with him over phone. He said to me, to pack the stuff and move to Kanispora Baramulla as Eid was nearing. He was to join us all at Kanispora. I got very excited about this but that did not happen. All of a sudden Afzal stopped calling back home.

Shutdown for 3rd consecutive day ISLAMABAD—Complete shutdown is being observed for the third consecutive day (Tuesday) to mark martyrdom anniversary of renowned liberation fighter Muhammad Maqbool Butt. Muhammad Maqbool Butt was executed in New Delhi’s Tihar jail on the 11th February in 1984. Call for the three-day shutdown was given by pro-freedom leaders and organizations, Radio Pakistan reported. It is aimed at pressing the demand for return of mortal remains of the martyred leaders Muhammad Maqbool Butt and Muhammad Afzal Guru from New Delhi’s Tihar Jail to the occupied territory.—APP

JK participates in Turkey’s tourism exhibition SRINAGAR—Seeking to expand its tourism market, Jammu and Kashmir this year for the first time participated in Turkey’s largest tourism exhibition, EMITT 2014 Istanbul. Besides having a stand at the exhibition, the Tourism Department arranged many B2B meetings with Travel Trade and Media. The Tourism Department representatives met leading Turkish Media Groups such as World Travel Channel, ATV, Sabah Group, officials privy to the event told Greater Kashmir. The Interviews with the leading Media both Newspapers, Magazines and TV channels were initiated to introduce the Destination and to change the image and perception about Kashmir and to further the growth of Tourism in the Valley from the Eastern Mediterranean region and specially Turkey, they said. Joint Director Tourism Department, M H Mir met leading Tour Operators from the Eastern Mediterranean region to introduce the destination, enlist interest and create buzz and excitement amongst the Travel Trade in Turkey.— NNI

Body of missing youth found after 3 months

After some days passed one of our relatives came to our house and immediately switched on the television. All hell broke loose on us. When I saw Afzal Sahib portrayed as militant by the Indian media. All my dreams shattered by watching all these blatant lies staged by the media. When they arrested Afzal, for precisely one year we did not meet him because every member of our family was afraid of travelling to Delhi. For first three years he was under remand after that he was shifted to high-risk prisoner ward of Tihar jail. It was only there he started to write letters to us and always wrote not to come to visit him in jail. But after lot of discussion and deliberation within our family we went to meet him. At that time the case was lodged in Tees Hazari court and the judge was S.R. Dingre. And rest is history,” said Tabbasum while replying to a question about the happening. “If people would have protested in time, Afzal sahib would not have been hanged. However, I would not ask or stop anybody from holding protest demonstrations,” she said. Tabassum, said “she doesn’t expect justice from Central or State government but would continue to demand the return of her husband’s body till her death.” To a question whether Omar

Abdullah was aware about the execution of Afzal Guru, she said” “Let me start by saying that his father was responsible for Maqbool Bhat’s execution and Omar Abdullah is responsible for execution of my husband. It was a very well orchestrated plan by both the government’s center as well as state. It was with explicit permission of Omar Abdullah that they hanged my husband. On 31st January 2013, Omar went to New Delhi to sign the papers of Afzal’s execution. For next one week, on his orders more paramilitary troops arrived here to quell any situation. In such manner a proper planning was put in place before the execution of Afzal Sahib, all under the nose of Omar Abdullah. I hold Omar Abdullah equally responsible as government of India. It is impossible that without his green signal they could have executed Afzal Sahib as he is the head of the state. “My husband’s number was 21st and they hanged him before all the first 20. Is this justice? Till date they haven’t hanged killers of Rajiv Gandhi but they hanged Afzal Sahib. They hanged Afzal Sahib and Ajmal Kasab only because they were Muslims. The Hindu prisoners in Tihar jail who in every sense are real criminals are still living happily in Tihar,” she said.—NNI

Delhi Court harasses Hurriyat leaders NEW DELHI—A Delhi court has fixed February Indians and therefore, the penal provisions un19 for pronouncing its order on a plea seeking registration of an FIR against separatist leader Syed Ali Shah Geelani and three others for purportedly instilling “hatred” among the people of Kashmir and other parts of India. Metropolitan Magistrate Vijeta Singh reserved the order after hearing the arguments advanced by the two complainants. “Be listed for order on application under section 156(3) CrPC on February 19,” the court said. The complainants had claimed that Geelani, chief of hardline Hurriyat Conference, had on several occasions “threatened the safety and security of government of India and its citizens” by delivering hate speeches. During the arguments, the counsel appearing for the two complainants said that the court has the jurisdiction to order registration of FIR as the alleged statements given by Geelani and three others have been heard in Delhi as well. On the issue of special status and applicability of Ranbir Penal Code in Jammu and Kashmir, the lawyer argued that these four persons were

der IPC and other acts were applicable on them. Earlier, the court had sought an explanation from the two complainants as to how provisions of IPC are applicable in the matter as the purported offences have been allegedly committed by Geelani and three others in Jammu and Kashmir. The court’s order came after it went through the Action Taken Report (ATR) of Delhi Police which said the alleged offence did not fall in its jurisdiction and the probe cannot be carried out under Indian Penal Code (IPC) as it is not applicable in Jammu and Kashmir where the penal provision is under Ranbir Penal Code (RPC). Besides Geelani, the complaint had also sought lodging of FIR against Tehreek-EHurriyat general secretary Mohammad Ashraf Sahrai and two Hurriyat Conference members Masarat Alam Bhat and Ghulam Nabi Sumji for offences under various sections of IPC, including 121 (waging or attempting to wage war against country) and 153A (promoting enmity between classes).—NNI

SRINAGAR: Indian police not allowing pedestrians to go to their desired destinations.

Mufti: NC heads ‘worst ever corrupt dispensation’

KATHUA—Seeking support of the people to ‘uproot the worst ever corrupt dispensation’ headed by the National Conference, patron of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) Mufti Mohammad Sayeed has said that forthcoming SRINAGAR—Police has recov- Lok Sabha elections would be the first stage of ered the mutilated body of a PDP’s crusade to set up a new system of justice youth who was missing since and equality in JK. November 12 last year from forHe asserted that with the support of the est area of Pakharpora in Cen- people PDP is committed to establish a corruptral Kashmir’s Budgam district. tion free, transparent and accountable system of “This morning a group of villag- governance in the State so as to ensure that evers saw some wild animals mu- ery individual would get equal opportunity of tilating a body at Fotlipora area growth. Addressing an impressive public meetof Pakharpora in Charisharief,” ing at Kathua, Mufti regretted that since its forofficial sources said. mation the National Conference coalition regime The villagers immediately has systematically dismantled democratic instiinformed police regarding the tutions in the State thus depriving people of their body. Meanwhile, Police team democratic rights. rushed to the spot and they reHe observed that democratic institutions of covered the mutilated body the State have become first causality of the from the area. wrong policies being propagated by the present A police official while con- dispensation during the last more than five years. firming the incident and iden- Ridiculing claims of the government to take tified the deceased as Feroz some steps to “strengthening” Panchayat Raj Ahmad Baba (25) son of Institutions in the State, Mufti said that such Ghulam Qadir of Wathoora, cosmetic steps were taken too late. Chadoora. “A case under sec“Panchayat elections in the State were held tion 174 CrPc has been regis- in the year 2011 but for the last three years nothtered in this regard and further ing has been done to make Panchayats vibrant in investigations taken up”, the J&K”, he said and observed that when tenure of official said.—GNS the present government was almost over this re-

gime has been taking some cosmetic steps at its fag end only to befool the people. “This regime had conducted Panchayati elections only to get grants which were blocked by the Centre for not conducting Panchayati elections in the State. Trickling down powers at village level to strengthen grass root democracy was never aim of this regime, he said, adding, “the way this government created hurdles in the elections of the Block Development Councils (BDCs) and District Development Councils (DDCs) is a clear indication that regime is not interested to decentralize powers”. Taking State Government to task for its failure to conduct civic bodies elections which were due in February 2010, he said that during the last five years Jammu and Kashmir has been witnessing deliberate and overt attempt to irrevocably subvert democratic institutions. He said that people were sick and tired of the corruption and they want to get rid of present system. “Only PDP has potential to provide credible alternative of National Conference because this party during its tenure in the government and as well as in opposition has proved how to address aspirations of the people”, he said and urged people of Jammu region to response their faith in PDP for political empowerment and balanced economic growth “I assure the people that PDP would safeguard their aspirations and concerns as a responsible political party”, he told the gathering.—NNI

BHIMBER: President Kashmir Freedom Movement, Engr. Khalid Parvaiz Butt presenting a memorandum for UN Secretary General to UNMOGIP officials after a protest demonstration in front of United Nations Military Observer Group for India and Pakistan field officer on the occasion of death anniversary of Kashmiri leader Maqbool Butt and Shuhada of Chakothi.

Maqbool Butt’s death anniversary observed

DAK: Puppets of state agencies have licence to commit crime

MIRPUR—Jammu & Kashmir people at either side of the line of control and rest of the world on Tuesday observed 30th anniversary of hanging of eminent leader of Kashmir freedom movement Muhammad Maqbool Butt. Processions were taken out and the rallies held in all small and major towns at both sides of the Line of Control to pay glorious tributes to shaheed Maqbool Butt who was put to gallows by India this day in New Delhi’s Tihar Jail this day in 1984 for his “offense” of demanding right of self determination. Special functions in Mirpur observed the anniversary of one of the founders leader, a joint demonstration was staged coupled with a big procession taken out by various social, political and student organizations. The activists of Jammu & Kashmir Liberation Conference, Jammu Kashmir Plebiscite Front, Jammu Kashmir Liberation Front, Jammu Kashmir National Students Federation, J & K Students Liberation Front and other groups were present there to pay glorious tributes to the eminent hero of the Kashmir freedom struggle. The demonstrating people marched through the major city streets in separate procession taken out from Akber Road and Quaid-e-Azam chowk chanting anti-India and pro-freedom slogans besides the slogans in commemoration of the supreme sacrifices of lives by Maqbool Butt and other Kashmiri martyrs. Earlier a large number of the activists of different organizations took out a torch bearing procession at Shaheed chowk Monday night to eulogize the contribution of the martyred Kashmiri leader to the freedom struggle. The participants of the rally put on the candles of freedom in memory of the Kashmiri martyrs coupled with the renewal of the pledge to continue the mission of late Maqbool Butt, Afzal Guru and other Kashmiri martyrs to make the Kashmir freedom struggle a complete success.—APP

‘Difficult to get passport’ S RINAGAR —Even though there are proper directions from the government that the kiths and kins of former militants should not be deprived from getting passports, yet there are countless examples in Held Kashmir where men, women and youth are facing enormous difficulties to get the passport. CID department of the State are citing the reason that their relatives are involved in militancy related cases and thus can’t be issued passport in their favour. “I applied for the passport (file number A-020905) in 2011 and it is 2014 yet I have not received the passport. I was told that my brother is involved in a militancy related case. The irony is that the verification done by CID makes it clear that nothing adverse has been found against me,” a Srinagar resident told CNS. He said that after consultation with a CID official, he was asked to submit an application wherein he should admit that his brother was involved in a militancy case and request the top brass to issue passport in his favour. —NNI

Molesting a lady medico condemned SRINAGAR—Powerful and mighty in Kashmir houses involved were acquitted and given plump have a license to commit crime. They dare to do it in Kashmir because they know that they will get away. They are puppets of state agencies with an assignment to suppress the sentiment and are free to kill and rape. Shabir Khan is a glaring example of power crime who after molesting a female medico is roaming free. Police has failed to arrest him because power houses are protecting him. This is irony that the accused is roaming scot free despite an arrest warrant against him, DAK President, Dr Nisar Ul Hassan told Valley Media Service in a statement. In Sara Grooves murder case, the Kashmir police arrested the accused Richard Dewit within 24 hours; but in Shabir Khan’s case, police is delaying his arrest despite huge public outcry. In 2006 sex scandal in a secret trial all power

postings. It was shocking to see even public mandate for some involved in the sex scam. Alas, it can happen in Kashmir only. In rest of India there is no immunity to celebrities and Tarun Tejpal’s molestation case is a best example to substantiate the argument. If authorities are sincere to investigate the female medicos complaint and cleanse the government offices, involvement of all the accomplices under the command of former minister of state must be probed thoroughly because the culpability of his subordinates can not be ruled out, he said. If the accused is not arrested immediately the doctors fraternity will have no other option but to take to streets. We request the people of the nation to knock the doors of their conscience and raise their voice against this heinous crime.—NNI

World urged to pressurize Delhi to return mortal remains S RINAGAR —Chairman of Hurriyat Conference (G), Syed Ali Shah Geelani has urged the international community and human rights bodies to pressurize New Delhi to return mortal remains of Muhammad Maqbool Bhat and Afzal Guru from Tihar jail. “We will continue to demand the return of mortal remains of our martyrs from Tihar jail. We ask international community and world Human rights bodies to pressurize India to return their mortal remains,” the spokesman of Hurriyat (G) Ayaz Akbar quoting Geelani said in a statement. Geelani paid rich tributes to ‘Shaheed-e-Islam’ Muhammad Afzal Guru. “By putting Afzal on gallows and burying him in the premises of Tihar Jail not only Indian democracy and secularism stands exposed but it has proved a milestone for the freedom

movement of Kashmir by promoting the sentiments of Islam and Freedom among the people of Kashmir,” Geelani said. “Afzal has become an ideal for the Kashmiri youth. It the worst type of state terrorism to convert the whole state into a prison and crackdown against freedom lovers and has proved that it is only thousands of martyrs like Afzal who represents the real sentiments of Kashmiri people. He condemned the arrest of separatist leaders Ashraf Sahrai, Muhammad Yasin Mailk, Shabir Ahmad Shah, Naeem Ahmad Khan. Altaf Ahmad Shah, Peer Saifullah, Mehrajudin Kalwal, Mir Hafeezulah, Muhammad Ashraf laya, Abdul Gani Bhat, Malik Noor Fayaz, Mushtaq-ul-Islam, Showkat Ahmad Bakhshi and Nisar Hussain Rather.—NNI

Brother dies, sister critical in Pattan mishap P ATTAN —One person was killed another sustained serious injuries after a car in which they were travelling met with an accident in Pattan area of Baramulla district this morning. “A speedy Maruti car bearing registration number DL3C2044 turned turtle near Diver crossing Mirgund, resulting in injuries to driver Harjeet Singh and his sister Ranjeet Kour, residents of Aluchibagh, Srinagar”, a police spokesman said. Due to negligence of the people in power creates huge

problems for resident of occupied Kashmir to travel from one place to another, this sad incident is an example of the deteriorating conditions of occupied Kashmir roads etc. He said that both the injured were shifted to Sub District Hospital, Pattan where Harjeet Singh succumbed to his injuries. The injured Ranjeet Kour was referred to SKIMS, Soura for further treatment. Meanwhile, Pattan Police has registered a case in this regard, the spokesman added.—Agencies

JKPFL denounces harassment of party leaders SRINAGAR—The Jammu and Kashmir Peoples Freedom League (JKPFL) has strongly condemned the crackdown on the party leaders and activists by the authorities to thwart conducting of various programmes in connection with the martyrdom anniversaries of Muhammad Maqbool Butt and Muhammad Afzal Guru. The JKPFL spokesman in a statement issued in Srinagar said that Indian police raided houses of the party leaders and activists including Imtiaz Ahmad Shah and harassed the inmates particularly women and children. He said that the fresh arrest spree exposed the socalled Indian democracy and further stressed India usually follows such actions quite regularly and this arrest spree is brutal example of India’s ruling party atrocities in occupied Kashmir. He further stated that the world should take serious note against India and must stop India from committing crimes against humanity because such actions not only psychologically keep residents disturbed but also physically hurts. The spokesman said that the cheap tactics being utilised by the Indian government and its puppet administration in the occupied territory could not weaken the freedom sentiment of the Kashmiri people and they would continue their struggle for securing right to self-determination till it reached its logical conclusion.—KMS

MUZAFFARABAD: Activists of Jammu Kashmir National Students Federation holding a protest demonstration on the occasion of death anniversary of Kashmiri leader Maqbool Butt and Shuhada of Chakothi.


Gov to be chief guest at Marcon Observer Report L AHORE —Governor of Punjab Ch. Muhammad Sarwar will be the chief guest at the inaugural ceremony of Marcon being held on March 10-11. Marcon, the biggest and most prestigious marketing congress in the country is being organized by Marketing Association of Pakistan Lahore Chapter. Khaliq ur Rehman, Chairman Marcon, said that the theme for Marcon 2014 is “Turning the Tide” and over fifteen national and international speakers will share their experiences, ideas and strategies during the two day conference.

Pakistan pays $147m as 27th instalment to IMF K ARACHI —Pakistan has paid the 27th installment under IMF/SBA facility amounting to SDR 96 million equivalent $147 million, the spokesperson of State Bank of Pakistan (SBP) said here on Tuesday. With the repayment of current installment, Pakistan todate has repaid to IMF SDRs4,289 million equivalent $ 6,544 million since July 2011, of which SDRs 3,715 million equivalent of $ 5,660 million was under SBA facility. After the current repayment, remaining amount due under IMFSBA facility until Sep 2015 is SDRs 1,221 million, the spokesperson said.—APP

Shipping activity at Port Qasim K ARACHI —Four ships C.V Safemarine Ngami, C.V Maersk Kalamata, M.V Mercury Triumph and M.V Inlaco Brave carrying containers, project cargo and wheat were arranged berthing at Qasim International Container Terminal, Multi Purpose Terminal and Grain & Fertilizer Terminal respectively at Port Qasim on Monday 10th February-2014. Meanwhile four more ships with containers, furnace oil and phosphoric acid also arrived at outer anchorage of Port Qasim during last 24 hours. Berth occupancy was maintained at the Port at fifty percent on Monday where seven ships namely C.V Nala Delmas, C.V Maersk Kalamata, C.V Maersk Chicago, C.V Safemarine Ngami, M.V Da Yu Xia, M.V Mercury Triumph.—APP

Business is never so healthy as when, like a chicken, it must do a certain amount of scratching around for what it gets. —Henry Ford

Need for joint ventures between Pak, India stressed Indian businessmen hold interactive session with Pakistani counterpart SALIM AHMED

munity in the two countries. He said that the study would be ready by March 31, 2014 LAHORE—A 15-member delegation of In- and it would be furnished to the concerned dian businessmen belonging to Federation quarters in the Indian government for apof Indian Micro and Small & Medium En- propriate measures in that direction. He said terprises (FIMSE) Tuesday had a great in- that the two governments should make conteractive session with their counterparts certed efforts to implement Ease of Doing here and pledged to work hand-in-hand to Business Phenomenon which is a key to atpave way for enhanced trade activities. The tract foreign businesses. He said that the meeting took place at the Lahore Chamber delayed issuance of visas to both Indian and of Commerce and Industry. LCCI Senior Vice Pakistani businessmen was the biggest President Mian Tariq Misbah, Vice Presi- hurdle to bilateral trade therefore the busident Kashif Anwar and the leader of FIMSE nessmen both in India and Pakistan should delegation Mukesh Kalra exchanged views convince their respective governments to in an open and candid atmosphere. Former expedite the process in the larger interests LCCI President Mohammad Ali Mian, of the people of this part of the world. former Vice President Shafqat Saeed Mukesh Kalra expressed the optimism Dr Mirza Ikhtiar Bag, Chairman and CEO Pak Denim Ltd receiving ‘FPCCI Special Merit Export Award 2013’ from Piracha, Executive Committee members that Pak-India trade would get a quantum Prime Minister Mian Nawaz Sharif on consecutive 16th year. Commerce Minister Khurram Dastagir and President Mian Zahid Javaid, Muhammad Afzal, jump as soon as the trade ties turn normal. FPCCI Zubair Malik are also present. Iftikhar Bashir Chaudhry, Talha Tayyab He said that there are no two opinions about Butt, Zafar Mehmmod and Akber Sheikh it that Pakistan is a safe place to do busialso spoke on the occasion. ness and a lucrative market as well. The Mukesh Kalra, while stressing the need LCCI Senior Vice President Mian Tariq for joint ventures between the two sides, Misbah was of the view that the frequency said that the FIMSE was preparing a well of visits made by Indian delegations to Paresearched and well consulted study to iden- kistan in the last couple of years shows tify sector-specific impediments to bilateral that Indian business community is really trade aimed at facilitating the business com- very keen to study the Pakistani markets. L AHORE —The Punjab government on to 346.58=48.78 km & Jinnah Barrage Link Tuesday approved thirteen development Road (length 7.71(-)2.20=5.51 km) total schemes with an estimated cost of Rs length=54.29 km in District Mianwali at a of Rs 2018.138 million, Widening / ImK ARACHI —Economic de- 11,869.066 million. The approved develop- cost provement of road from Adda Jahan Khan ment schemes included: Upgradation of velopment, particularly, in to Kotala Jam Via 36 Wala Khokha & Samlan muslim countries ought to Thalassemia Unit and Bone Marrow Trans- Wala Morr (length=21.00 km) in District plant center at B.V. Hospital Bahalpur. (Rebe complimented by socioBhakkar at a cost of Rs. 242.505 million, logical development encom- vised) at a cost of Rs 908.632 million, EnRehabilitation / Improvement of hancing Vegetable Production in Punjab at passing all sections and I SLAMABAD —Pakistan Software Export to 82.73 per cent, reduction in project rework Muridke-Narowal Road km No.42/0 to 75/ a cost of Rs 410.870 million, Replacement Board (PSEB) plans to initiate second phase from 38.67 to 19.36 per cent, reduction in segments of the society, of Outlived, Deeper and Inadequate Water 21 (length=33.21 km) in District Narowal of assisting IT companies in achieving vari- project delays from 34.64 to 16.35 per cent, said speakers Tuesday at Supply Lines in WASA, Lahore (Gastro (Dualization of Road) at a cost of Rs 1586.125 ous levels of Capability Maturity Model In- increase in export revenue from 50.00 to 65.98 the International Women Phase-II) at a cost of Rs 1917.650 million. million, Construction / Widening of road tegration (CMMI) and ISO-27001 certifica- per cent and also increase in domestic rev- Leaders Summit. PresentaConstruction of Leftover (SPBUSP) from Lahore Ferozepur Road Kahna to tions focussed on “Women enue was witnessed from 35.00 to 146.59 per tion soon to enhance exports. The decision Works of Sullage Carrier from Bosan Road Halloki along both sides of Butcher Khana to select number of IT companies for both cent. They said repeated studies have con- Making an Impact,” were Disposal Station to Sewage Treatment Plant Distributary (length=8.50 km) (Revised) at certifications would be taken during firmed that less than 25% of software devel- made by speakers from Pa- (STP) at Suraj Miani and STP to River a cost of Rs 893.365 million and Rehabilitakistan, Turkey, India, United Board’s meeting, expected on Friday. De- opment projects ever meet their objectives. tion / Improvement Lawrence College Jhika Like the ISO 9000 standard, the CMMI is Kingdom and Afghanistan Chenab, Multan. (Revised) at a cost of Rs Gali Bye Pass Road length = 9.35 km, Dissigned to minimize the high frequency of 751.490 million, Construction of Express Way failures in outsourced software develop- also a model-based software process im- during the event organized from Shujabad to Nag Shah L=26.15 km Dis- trict Rawalpindi at a cost of Rs 412.814 milment projects, the CMMI has been devel- provement approach and PSEB recommends by New World Concept. lion. These schemes were approved in the Most of the speakers trict Multan at a cost of Rs 1295.473 million. 30th meeting of Provincial Development oped to assess vendor’s ability to complete that, for the growing number of Pakistani Construction of Bypass at Kehror Pacca comprising entrepreneurs software and service companies that are aldevelopmental projects within a specified working Party of current fiscal year 2013-14 ready ISO 9000-certified and are now hop- from Turkey, India and Pa- length=12.50 km in District Lodhran at a cost presided over by the Punjab Planning and budget and timeframe. of Rs 282.250 million, Widening / ImproveOfficial sources at PSEB on Tuesday ing to achieve a higher level of process ma- kistan urged women neither ment of Tibba Sultan Pur-Mailsi Road Development Board Chairman, Muhammad said the Board launched the programme few turity - should consider qualifying for a CMM to use their gender as any length:35.00 km in District Vehari at a cost Irfan Elahi. years back and assisted four companies to certification as well. They said this model excuse nor for any privilege. of Rs 424.696 million, Widening / ImproveProvincial Secretary P&D Arif Anwar achieve CMMi level-3 and CMMi level-5 addresses certain fundamental business de- The speakers included ment of road DM Road to District bound- Baloch, all members of the Planning & DeDevrim Gursel, CEO, while it also assisted 18 companies to cisions not supported by the ISO-9000 or velopment Board, Provincial Secretaries Neera ary Khanewal (length: 21.70 km) in District concerned and other senior representatives achieve CMMi Level-2. The objective of other systems of product quality. The CMMI Mesan-Turkey, Vehari at a cost of Rs 288.103 million, WidSaggi, President, Mumbai enables companies to better serve their cusrunning the activities was to initiate CMMI ening / Improvement of Lahore Sargodha of the relevant Provincial Departments also activities in Pakistan and create a base for tomers interests by providing answers to the Chamber of Commerce and Mianwali Banuu Road Art:2 km No. 297.80 attended the meeting.—APP Industry, Ahlya Fateh, MD customers decision problems. CMMI implementation at the mass level. Kamela The second phase is aimed at pro- Tatanaka-UK, The sources said PSEB also conducted a survey to gauge benefits taken by IT compa- viding CMMI level consultancy and ap- Sidiqi, CEO, Kaweyaan-Afnies from CMMI and statistics of survey re- praisal assistance to IT companies which ghanistan, Dr. Anita Zaidi, sults indicated that growth of Human Re- was 80 per cent borne by PSEB and 20 Winner of CAPLOW Prize source strength increased from 31.60 to 36.27 per cent by the company in the first 2013, Angela P Aggler, Counsellor for Public Afper cent, employee retention rate from 71.77 phase. —APP fairs, US EmbassyIslamabad, Saulat Salahuddin, CEO, Pronto meeting, here today. Provincial Minister for STAFF REPORTER Promo and Shireen Arshad Industries & Commerce Ch. Muhammad Khan, Chairperson AHAN. Shafiq, Addl. Chief Secretary Punjab, MPAs L AHORE —Provincial Food Minister and Earlier, Deputy Governor, State Bank of Pakistan, Chairman Price Control Cabinet Committee and administrative secretaries were also Kazi Abdul Muktadir ad- Bilal Yasin has called upon Members As- present in the meeting. Bilal Yasin said that dressing the inaugural ses- sembly notified by Punjab government to Punjab Government has made available sion of the moot focussed on ensure regular monitoring of their respec- convenience to the general public to ascer“Encouraging Board Room tive districts, accompanied by concerned tain market rates of all districts, through Diversity,” and sounded DCOs, of Sahulat and Sunday Bazars. He SMS, through mobile phone service. Now hopeful of more women in also directed DCOs of all districts to moni- any citizen can know about market price senior positions at already tor presence of government officers at the rates by sending SMS at 80024, and the established and emerging time of auction at fruit and vegetable mar- citizen would receive rate list within 10 seckets. He said necessary legislation has been onds, which will be available on the system companies in the country. He said that the grass made to take action against persons extract- after 09:00 a.m., in all districts. The Minister further directed that conceiling persists to hinder ing oil from dead and haraam animals, unthe women development der which those involved in this heinous cerned DCOs of all districts should ensure yet reiterated that women, act, would be awarded three months impris- presence of respective officers during aucthough the numbers may onment, alongwith penalty of Rs. 5000. He tion to ensure its transparency. He said oil not be substantial, are wit- said necessary methodology is being extracted from Halal animals would only be nessed facing the relevant evolved to sell edible oil and ghee in pack- utilized in manufacturing of soap, while strict action would be taken under the relchallenges quite boldly and ing form. Provincial Minister for Food Bilal Yasin evant law against those heinous elements ISLAMABAD: US Ambassador Richard G Olson accompanied by Ms Sarah Beran, making room for themwas presiding over a high-level cabinet extracting oil from dead and haraam animals. Economic Counsellor called on Federal Minister for Finance, Muhammad Ishaq Dar. selves.—APP

PSEB to initiate modern certifications to enhance IT exports

Economic development needs to follow by social development

13 development schemes of Rs 11869m approved

Strategy being evolved to sell edible oil, ghee in packing form

Another growth year

MCB delivered consistent value for its shareholders STAFF REPORTER KARACHI—The Board of Directors of Muslim Commercial Bank met under the Chairmanship of Mian Mohammad Mansha, on Tuesday to review the performance of the Bank and approve the financial statements for the year ended December 31, 2013.Despite the challenging operating and regulatory revisions impacting net interest margins, MCB has posted remarkable results for the year ended December 31, 2013 with profit before tax of the Bank growing by 2% over restated profit of last year with profit after tax growing by 4%.

The growth in profitability numbers is reflective of the underlying financial strength, strategic financial management and optimal risk management. The gross markup income decreased by 5% over last year which was off-set by the lower cost of funds on strategically managed CASA base for major part of the financial year. The Bank focused on improving its non-markup income proportion and registered a growth of 22% over last year. On the operating expense side, the Bank recorded a one-off charge for the voluntary separation scheme (VSS) offered to its clerical / non-clerical staff for which an approximate cost of Rs. 1.1 billion was recorded in the finan-

cial results for the year ended December 31, 2013. The gross administrative expense base excluding the VSS charge and pension fund reversal, recorded a decrease of approximately Rs. 117 million which is indicative of the cost effective synergies attained through central authorizations and annual capping. The substantial reversal in the provision charge is reflective of the prudent and aggressive provision strategy adopted and rigorous efforts put in by the recovery units. This translated into profit before tax being reported at Rs. 32.28 billion registering an increase of 2% and profit after tax reported at 21.49 billion registering an increase of 4%.The

Bank’s total asset base was reported at an alltime high of Rs. 815.51 billion which increased by 6% over December 31, 2012. Net investments increased by Rs. 46.93 billion to Rs. 449 billion whereas gross advances were reported at Rs. 268.19 billion. The non-performing loan base of the Bank reported a significant contraction of Rs. 2.29 billion in the financial year 2013 with major recoveries in “loss” categorized loans. On the liabilities side, the deposit base of the Bank registered an increase of 87.269 billion, translating into 16% over December 31, 2012. The Bank continued with its strategy of shifting its base to low cost current and saving accounts,

each growing by 13% and 28% respectively over December 31, 2012 and taking the total CASA base to an all-time high of 90%. The fixed deposit base of the Bank saw a significant reduction of 20% in the financial year 2013. Earnings per share (EPS) for the year 2013 came to Rs. 21.24 as compared to Rs. 20.43 for 2012. Return on assets was reported at2.72%, return on equity came to 23.09% with book value per share improving to Rs. 96.13. The Board of Directors declared 10% Bonus Shares and cash dividend of Rs. 3.50 per share for the year ended December 31, 2013, in addition to interim cash dividend of Rs. 10.50 per share already paid.


Selling

Currency

Buying

USA

105.20

105.00

UK

172.74

174.42

Euro

143.79

143.51

Canada

94.94

94.76

Switzerland

117.51

117.29

Australia

94.73

94.55

Sweden

16.25

16.22

Japan

1.0297

1.00277

Norway

17.18

17.15

Singapore

82.89

82.73

Denmark

19.27

19.23

Saudi Arabia

28.05

28.00

Hong Kong

13.56

13.54

Kuwait

372.61

371.90

Malaysia

31.48

31.42

Newzealand

87.31

87.14

Qatar

28.89

28.83

UAE

28.64

28.59

KR. WON

0.0981

0.0979

Thailand

3.208

3.193

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

44,485.00 702.85

SECP company registration witnesses 20pc growth in January ISLAMABAD—The Securities and Ex- companies have been registered as change Commission of Pakistan (SECP) registered 397 new limited liability companies in January, the first month of the year 2014, bringing the total corporate portfolio to 62,644 companies. Relative to corresponding month of last year, 20% growth has been witnessed in company registrations. In the last two months the SECP registered 812 companies, showing an increasing trend towards corporatization in the country. In addition to registration of companies, the SECP granted licenses to 3 nonprofit associations. Around 91% companies registered as private limited companies, while around 5% companies registered as single-member companies, according to SECP statement issued here Tuesday. Two percent of the

non-profit associations under Section 42 of the 1984 Companies Ordinance. About 1% companies have been registered as public limited companies and foreign companies each, the statement added. The tourism sector took the lead in new registrations with the incorporation of 40 companies, this month, followed by services and trading with 39 each, information and technology with 28, construction with 26, communications with 24, corporate agricultural farming with 19, and food and beverages with 16 companies. Foreign investment has been witnessed in 14 new companies, the statement said adding these companies have foreign investors from Australia, China, Japan, South Korea, Malaysia, Turkey, UAE, UK and the US.

These companies are from communications, mining and quarrying, power generation, pharmaceutical, fuel and energy, textile, tourism and trading sectors. During the month of January, 124 companies each were registered at the Company Registration Office (CRO), Lahore and Islamabad. The Karachi CRO registered 82 companies, while the CROs in Peshawar, Multan and Faisalabad registered 27, 22 and 12 companies respectively while the Quetta CRO registered 6 companies. During the month the returns for increase in the authorized capital of 79 companies were accepted, with the total authorized capital increment of Rs8.6 billion. In addition, 98 companies filed returns for increase in the paid-up capital with the total enhancement amounting to Rs8.58 billion.—APP

PIAF urges govt for stringent security of sensitive installations

MULTAN: Gold Tezabi (24-Ct) 43200.00 Gold 22 Ct 39500.00 SilverTezabi 686.00 Silver Thobi 627.00

Oil prices up in Asian trade SINGAPORE—US oil prices remained above $100 a barrel in Asian trade Tuesday on stronger demand, but trading was subdued ahead of new Fed chief Janet Yellen’s testimony to Congress. New York’s main futures contract, West Texas Intermediate (WTI) for delivery in March, was up five cents to $100.11 a barrel in afternoon trade, following volatile trade earlier in the day. WTI closed above $100 on Monday, bolstered by falling US inventories which indicate bigger demand. Brent North Sea crude for March delivery was up seven cents to $108.70. Analysts said investors were waiting for the testimony in Congress this week by Yellen, who took over from Ben Bernanke as chair of the US central bank. Yellen will brief legislators on the state of the US economy and the direction of monetary policy. Yellen’s first hearing will be Tuesday in the House of Representatives, with attention on how she might view a second consecutive weak monthly jobs report released Friday, and how that might affect the Fed’s drawdown of its stimulus operation. “No one is expecting any surprises from her prepared text,” said DBS Bank in a research note. “Yellen is unlikely to deviate from the well telegraphed views of the FOMC (Federal Open Market Committee), in particular, a more optimistic US economic outlook this year and the ‘steady and measured’ pace of ending asset purchases by December.” DBS said the main focus for investors would be the question and answer session with US legislators. Global markets are closely watching the pace of the winding down of the government’s massive stimulus package for the US economy. The health of the US economy is a key influence on oil prices as the United States is the world’s biggest oil consumer. APP US oil prices remained above $100 a barrel in Asian trade Tuesday on stronger demand, but trading was subdued ahead of new Fed chief Janet Yellen’s testimony to Congress. New York’s main futures contract, West Texas Intermediate (WTI) for delivery in March, was down five cents to $100.01 a barrel in mid-morning trade, but was see-sawing in volatile trade. WTI closed above $100 on Monday, bolstered by falling US inventories which indicate bigger demand. Brent North Sea crude for March delivery was up two cents to $108.65. Analysts said investors were waiting for the testimony in Congress this week by Yellen, who took over from Ben Bernanke as chair of the US central bank.—AFP

L AHORE —Pakistan Industrial & Traders and terrorists were out to destabilize the Associations Front (PIAF) has urged the government to ensure fool proof security of sensitive installations as any terror act causes unbearable loss to the all segments of society including trade & industry. In a statement issued here, Chairman PIAF Malik Tahir Javed, Senior Vice Chairman Khamis Saeed Butt and Vice Chairman Amjad Ali Jawa said that recent blasts of gas pipeline at Rahim Yar Khan had suspended gas supply to the Punjab and halted economic activities across the province. He said that one day gas closure to the Punjab industry causes loss of Rs. 6.68 billion as far as production is concerned while total economic loss is more than Rs. 9 billion. The PIAF office-bearers said that the business community understands the government was making sincere efforts for the promotion of trade and economic activities in the country but the anti-social elements

economy. They said that such incidents on railway tracks and gas installations send a very negative signal to the foreign investors besides discouraging the local investments. They said that the government has to evolve a fool proof security in consultation with the business community to avert such incidents in future. They expressed the optimism that the ongoing talks would be completed successfully in near future as whenever such an incident takes place, it is the trade and the industry that suffers heavy loss. The PIAF office-bearers said that recent blasts, it was not the trade and industry alone but the common citizens also faced numerous problems while the school children could not have their breakfast and lunch. They said that the business community appreciates the government efforts for repairing the damaged sites and restoration of gas supply in a quicker manner.—Online

No restrictions on Pakistani trucks: Indian HC Wahga customs station ready to function AMANULLAH KHAN K ARACHI —The Wahga Customs Station is ready to function and would soon start facilitating trade with Pakistan; said High Commissioner of India, T.C. Raghavan. Addressing to the office bearers and members of Pakistan Readymade Manufacturers and Exporters Association (PTGMEA) and organizing committee of Made In Pakistan Expo 2014 at a local hotel in Karachi, Raghavan said that Customs Station on Indian side was under construction for quite sometimes but now completed and start examining goods at mass scale. The Indian diplomat said that India has not imposed any kind of ban on Pakistan’s truckloads of goods entering into India and at Wahga border their movement is continuing. Regarding non-tariff barriers (NTBs) he said that it was up to the governments that whatever it considers better for the country. He said that Pakistan’s exporters’ marketing in Indian market should be strong and more effective to enhance their market share in India. He said that China in a very short period of time has

captured $40 billion market in India and its trade is still growing. He said that Cement exporters should ask their buyers to contact private sector certification agencies to acquire certification as cement buyers are reluctant to come to Pakistan due to security reasons. He said that visa related problems would be resolved soon and the exhibitors taking part in Made In Pakistan Expo 2014 being held in Mumbai, India would be given visas on priority. The Chairman PRGMEA (SZ), Arshad Aziz said on this occasion that over 70 per cent stalls have been booked for the event as the response for the mega event being held in April is overwhelming. He said that considering the response to the fair he extended this event to the manufacturers of other sectors besides textile and clothing. He appealed to the High Commissioner to reduce tariff on Pakistan’s apparel as per SAFTA rules because Sri Lanka and Nepal are enjoying duty and tariff free regime on their garments in India. The stakeholders present on the occasion appealed to minimize the period of visa processing.

Traders appeal for halt in forced ejections I SLAMABAD — The Senior Vice President of Islamabad Chamber of Commerce & Industry and Secretary Information of Traders Action Committee, Islamabad Khalid Chaudhry has appealed to the Prime Minister Mian Muhammad Nawaz Sharif to issue orders for halting the forced ejections of traders from shops till the promulgation of a balanced rent restriction act in Islamabad. He said this while addressing a meeting of local traders. He said before the elections, all parties had promised for the promulgation of a balanced rent control act in the federal capital on coming to power, however, eight months have passed and it is high time that the PML-N government should honor its promise. Khalid Chaudhry said due to absence of rent control act, the local traders are facing great problems in running business as they are always in a sense of insecurity due to fear of forced ejections.—Online

L AHORE —Poultry sector that falls under livestock has expressed grave concern on reported non discriminatory market access being granted to India this week citing the drawbacks the factor faces due to flawed government policies. In a letter written to the Secretary of Ministry of Commerce the senior vice president of Pakistan Poultry Association Khalil Sattar has pointed out various reforms that the government needs to take before opening the poultry sector for the Indians. He said first handicap that poultry farmers face is that they have to produce electricity at Rs 35 per unit from self installed generators as power is most of the time unavailable in remote rural areas where most of the poultry farms are located. This obviously increases the cost of poultry production in Pakistan as India poultry farmers get assured power supply at zero or subsidized rates much lower than their Pakistani counterparts. He further pointed out that security situation in remote areas force even a medium sized farmer to hire 12-16 security guards which again is an unnecessary expenditure as security of assets and businesses is the responsibility of the state. Another drawback that the poultry farmers face is the reluctance of qualified technical staff to visit remote area poultry farms because of fear of kidnapping, he added. He said poultry can only be exported if a country has a system that ensures monitoring and disease surveillance.

KARACHI: Chinese Counsel General Mr. Mu Yong Peng cuts the ribbon to inaugurate the Restaurant Suzie Wong along with Mr. Sheharyar Mirza, General Manager Karachi Marriott Hotel for Chinese New Year celebrations.

SNGPL faces Rs65m loss in Sialkot region every month SIALKOT—General Manager KARACHI: Chief Executive of Avancean Limited Bakhtiar H Wayne rings opening bell SNGPL Gujranwala Region, Qaisar Masood, has pledged to make an all-out effort to improve infrastructure and services of the department to facilitate consumers. He was addressing the business community at the Sialkot Chamber of Commerce and Industry (SCCI) here on Tuesday. Group leader Sheikh Riaz Ud Din, Sialkot Chamber of Commerce and Industry (SCCI) President Dr Sarfraz Bashir, Senior Vice President Mian Muhammad Anwar, Vice President Khawar Sapal, Sui Northern Gas Pipelines Limited (SNGPL) officials and senior journalists were also present.—APP

Poultry sector concerned over non-discriminatory market access being granted to India STAFF REPORTER

KARACHI: Former Governor State Bank, Dr Ishrat Hussain, moderator, Ms Ayesha Tammy Haq and others, seen in a debate on ‘Promoting Gender Diversity at the Workplace’ during International Women Leaders Summit held here.

Moreover, he added that the state is required to issue the eradication list and list of notifiable diseases. He mentioned New Castle, Avian Influenza and H5N1 are all notifiable diseases and once they are notified all kinds of poultry exports would be banned no matter if they be for broilers, parent stocks or layers. He added New Castle is rampant in Pakistan due to lack of regulations for the prevention like farm to farm distance, disposal of dead birds and reckless use of vaccine and vaccination schedules. He further added India would exploit these flaw and impose ban on poultry imports from Pakistan. India has taken all preventive and safety steps required internationally for export of poultry and would be able to export its products to Pakistan. He pointed out that trade with India would open the way for import of cheaper poultry feed from India. This would stop the use of five million tons of local poultry feed that comprises of rice tips, corn, wheat bran, oil seed meals, sugarcane and molasses. This would create downward pressure of rates of these agricultural residues and impact the farmers badly. He stressed on the fact that Pakistan needs a strong viable and operative National Tariff Commission to check the import of subsidized products from India. Before giving MFN status to India the NTC should be strengthened and made fully operational. Khalil Sattar hoped that in view of these apprehensions poultry would be placed in the negative list in trade with India.

to start business activity at Karachi Stock Exchange.

SIALKOT: General Manager Sui Northern Gas Pipelines Gujranwala Qasier Masood with SCCI Officials after a meeting at Sialkot Chamber of Commerce and Industry.

Bank charges in utility bills are legal: KE STAFF REPORTER K ARACHI —That

bank charges in utility bills are legal and as per NEPRA’s order issued in 2010 said KE today. KE categorically denied some media reports and spokesman KE (K-Electric) said that it was NEPRA who had laid an order through which KE was legally inline to collect bank charges in its monthly bill. The press statement said that other DISCOS in the country are also charging bank charges which are hidden in their respective tariffs. KE is the only entity that shows bank charges separately on its monthly bill. The press statement categorically stated that NEPRA had approved Bank Charges back in 2010 after all the deliberations.

United Mobile Marks a new page in the history of Smartphone Deviees in Pakistan STAFF REPORTER LAHORE—United Mobile, the Leading Mobile Phone Distribution Company announces Pakistan’s first octa-core Smartphone the “Xtreme Octa Core X5” under the VOICE Brand in Lahore at the Avari Hotel. Some of the notable attendees included: Mr. Ejaz Hassan, Mr. Ashraf Nara, Mr. Jawed Shakoor, and Mr. Azad Lalani, among many others. Staying true to their promise, United Mobile provides the Pakistani consumers the very best of technology with the Xtreme X5 Smartphone. The latest offering from Voice is not only a powerful device but is packed with amazing features for all types of users. Besides having almost every upgraded feature a Smartphone user would look for, Xtreme Octa Core X5 goes the distance with blazing fast performance and a sleek design that sets it apart from the rest. The audience at the event was amazed after learning about the Xtreme X5 Smartphone during the presentation which was given by United Mobile’s country manager, Mr. Ali Yousuf. When given the opportunity to experience the X5 Smartphone themselves, the audience which included both youngsters and adults, were greatly enthused by the capabilities of the device. “The Xtreme X5 is a one of a kind device and we are sure that it will deliver in every way,” said Mr. Ejaz Hassan, Marketing Director at United Mobile.


GGC Takhtbhai off to flying start in AWKU Girls Cricket P E S H AWA R —Government Girls Degree 6 runs and were remained not out. Thus College Takhtbhai off to flying start on the opening day after defeating Abdul Wali Khan University team by 37 runs in the Abdul Wali khan University InterCollege Girls Cricket Championship, which got under way at Girls College Mardan ground on Tuesday. Principal of the Girls College Mardan Professor Haleema Begum was the chief guest on this occasion. Director Sports (Female) of the Abdul Wali Khan University Miss Rozeena Shaheen, organizing Secretary Miss Gul Nar, players, officials and large number of college students were also present. Takhbhai Girls College skipper Shaista won the toss and elected to bat first. The two openers Shabana and Sidra added 124 runs opening wicket partnership with Sidra smashed four sixes and seven boundaries in her 80 runs knock while Shabana made 44 runs including five boundaries and one six. Kainat made 16 runs and Rubi scored

Takhbhai Girls College set up 167 runs for the loss of six wickets after playing the allotted 20 overs. For Abdul Wali Khan University team Shazia and Samina grabbed two wickets each while Komal and Gulshan got one wicket each. In reply to a good fighting scoring, Abdul Wali Khan bowled out for 130 runs with Rukhsar made 45 runs including four boundaries and two sixes, Samina scored 37 runs with three boundaries, Zainab scored 17 runs including three boundaries. For Takhbhai Girls College Nida took three wickets, Haseeba, Tayyaba got two wickets each while Fatima and Rubina got one wicket each. Thus Takhbhai Girls College won the match by 37 runs and moved to the next round. Teams comprising University College for Women Mardan, Girls College Katland, Girls College Rustam, Abdul Wali Khan University, Girls College Mardan are taking part in the Championship.—APP

Divisional level sports competitions begin SPORTS REPORTER R AWA L P I N D I —Chairman

RAWALPINDI: A view of cricket match between Sialkot Stallions and Karachi Dolphins team during Faysal Bank T-20 Cup played at Pindi Cricket Stadium.

Sethi’s appointment challenged

IHC moved against ‘musical chair’ in PCB ZUBAIR QURESHI ISLAMABAD—A petition was filed in the Islamabad High Court Tuesday seeking suspension of the Feb 10 notification by the federal government that sacked Zaka Ashraf Chaudhry from the office of Chairman Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) and appointed Najam Aziz Sethi as new chairman. Prime Minister Mian Nawaz Sharif who is also Patron-in-Chief of the PCB on Monday had approved an amendment in the PCB constitution that delegated him powers to dissolve the governing board, make a new management committee and sack the chief of the PCB. Najam Sethi was appointed PCB Chairman by that very 8-member management committee and the IPC Min-

istry issued notification following the committee’s decision. The petition is filed by Ahmed Nwaz a candidate for the Secretary, regional cricket board through his lawyer Abdul Razaq Rajab. Making Prime Minister (Patron-inChief of the PCB), Ministry of InterProvincial Coordination (IPC) through Secretary IPC, Najam Sethi as respondents in his petition the petitioner has challenged dissolution of the governing board and appointment of the Management Committee for running the PCB affairs. These acts are against the PCB constitution and Feb 10 notification by the IPC Ministry was issued only to appoint Najam Sethi as Chairman of the Board, says the petition. The petitioner alleged that due to

this musical chair no one is suffering but the game of cricket. Cricket is a means of international diplomacy and has become Pakistan’s identity across the oceans. If we keep changing chairman of the PCB every other day and on the whims of the rulers, it will send wrong message to the world. The petitioner has prayed the court to declare the act of the management committee for appointing Najam Sethi as Chairman PCB illegal, unlawful and set aside. He also requested that during the pendency of the writ petition the operation of the above said impugned notification for the suppression of the Pakistan Cricket Board be stayed and the respondents be restrained from functioning with regard to the affairs of PCB.

PCB drama must now end SALAHUDDIN HAIDER

E

NOUGH is enough already .The PCB drama must now end. Paki stan Cricket Board has been turned into a laughing stock. Quite apart from whether Nawaz Sharif ’s decision to take over the Board’s patron in chief power from the President to himself, and then unilaterally making amendment in it, the situation now demands skilful handling. A musical chair game has been on for past many months. I hold no brief for Zaka Ashraf or even for Najam Sethi. But I have no sympathy for Zaka Ashraf. His appointment was more on friendlier and political ground by exPresident Asif Zardari. But Nawaz Sharif too cannot escape the blame for needlessly interfering with a game, of which he has little knowledge. Playing club cricket or at Aitchison College ground and hitting sixes on lolly pop deliveries, is not cricket. He just played one first class game, and then got pair against Australia when he forced himself into a side match during the Aussies tour to Pakistan. During his earlier stint too, he had appointed Mujib ur Rehman, younger brother of Saifur Rehman as the cricket board chief. A post which needed sincere government patronage, has been used more as a political football by successive government. Only one name stands out among its administrators—of late Air Marshal Nur Khan—who had elevated Pakistan cricket, hockey and squash to pristine glory during the time he was head of the cricket board, the Hockey Federation, and the Squash federation. Pakistan hockey was at its height of glory, having all the major titles of Olympics, world cups, asia cups, junior world cups, and champions trophy. After he was removed by General Zia on grounds of personal enmity, Nur Khan’s successors never really knew what to do. They were all

clueless, unknown commodities to ICC, IHF or the international squash federation. It was Arif Abbasi in cricket, late Brig Atif in Hockey, and Jahangir Khan in Squash, who enjoyed status and reputation internationally, and were duly heard at different fora. Now that Najam Sethi has come with a new adhoc committee, he has to handle onerous tasks. It is a powerful adhoc committee, comprising a former PCB chief, Zaheer Abbas, Iqbal Qasim, Punjab chief secretary, WAPDA chairman, and secretary to inter-provincial coordination ministry. Now that they have been placed, they will have to perform. The biggest challenge before Sethi, whose role in last year’s general elections as interim chief minister, Punjab, has always been under discussion, is to deal with the ICC scoundrels, assuming mafia form forcibly—India, Australia, and England— have introduced gangsterism in international cricket. India because of its being the richest board in cricket world, has now begun to dictate terms to Australia and England also. But nature has its own principles. Indian might was demolished by the on-going series by the Kiwis, who blasted them 4-0 in one dayers, and then defeated them in Test Cricket also. Such defeats should bring India down to its level. But its nature to establish hegemony over others, is something that needs to be checked by other nations. Pakistan, I agree with Sethi, stands isolated in cricket world, but South Africans played dirty. Four white teams—England, Australia, Newzealand, and South Africa, sided with India, overwhelmed by their designs to be world leaders, with declining standards in the game. However Pakistan, alongwith Sri Lanka, still have time till June this year to mend fences. There is hardly any options left for Sethi but to compromise with the ICC dictatorial policy

which soon would lead to veto powers for the big-3. Sethi had done a yeomen service by pleading the case for ban to be lifted from young Mohammada Aamir, who at the age of 17, had shaken the confidence of the mightiest of batsmen of the world. He was a great bowler, a tremendous cutter and swinger of the ball. He was banned only on racial grounds, and because Ejaz Butt as the PCB chief, was a meek person. Charges leveled against Shane Warne, and Suresh Raina, were hushed up because they were members of the powerful cricket boards. Ejaz Butt did not fight the case of Aamer, who could still be one of the greatest assets for the game. ICC must review its policies towards him, and lift the ban so that the youngster could outclass Micheal Holding, Imran Khan, Wasim Akram, Kapil Dev, Waqar Yunus, Denis Lillee,Fred Truman,Glenn Mcgrath, Alan Donald, Richard Hadlee. With his control on line and length, and swinging effect, Aamer could have outclassed them all. Unfortunately two precious years of his career has been lost. Still at 19 or 20, he could be a class of his own. Bad luck for him that he belonged to Pakistan, had he been in Indian, Australia ro England, he would have been worshipped. Hopefully, Sethi will pursue his case. He has the intelligence, and the convincing power to plead a case even before the mightiest of ICC members. Secondly, he should now join the ICC mafia, now that nothing is left for us to argue about. Thirdly, he should find on merit coaches, selection committee, and captain to win the Asia Cup and the coming T-20 world championship. No point in arguing now as to whether his nomination to the top slot merited selection. The focus should now be delivering the goods. Sethi has enormous task to perform. So let us give him a chance to do as much good to Pakistan cricket as could be possible.

Nawab wins Inter-Club Junior Snooker title P ESHAWAR —Nawab Khan clinched the trophy after defeating Haris Khan in the final of the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Inter-Club Junior Snooker Championship played at Green Snooker Club on Tuesday. President Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Billiard and Snooker Association Zulfiqar Butt was the chief guest on this occasion. Vice President Alluddin Khan, large number of players and spectators were also present. In the final Nawab Khan defeated Haris Khan by 3-1 frames. Haris Khan jolted Nawab Khan by 43-50, 6048, 70-37, and 45-30. The match provided great thrill for the sitting spectators. In his brief chat, Zulfiqar Butt lauded the efforts of the Vice President Alluddin Khan and Secretary Aamir Sabir for holding the event. He said the aim and objective of holding the event is to provide competitive exposures to the junior players who are going to represent Khyber Pakhtunkhwa in the forthcoming National Junior Snooker Championship to be played at Karachi from February 15-22. The players comprising Muhammad Rafique, Muhammad Azam, Asher Siddique, Aamir Goga, Kashif Khan, Junaid and Tasawar while Fawad will be the team manager.—APP

Standing Committee and Divisional convener sports council Malik Ibrar MNA has said that Government is specially focusing on the uplift of Youth of the country and is trying to provide all possible opportunity relating to their construction of personality and building of health

compete in every field. He expressed these views while inaugurating divisional level sports competitions which commenced on Tuesday with the opening of Badminton, Squash, Table Tennis, over arm Wrestling matches. Divisional sports officer Manzar Shah, DSO Waheed Baber, other organizers teams and players from all the districts of Rawalpindi Division in-

Punjab Muhammad Shahbaz Sharif has taken tremendous steps for the welfare of the young lot. He said that youth of the country is our asset and the government wants to utilized their capabilities in the positive direction. He added that sports competitions have helped in improving healthy atmosphere in the province. And those winning in these inter district competitions

RAWALPINDI: Chairman Standing Committee and Divisional convener sports council Malik Ibrar MNA with players during the inauguration of divisional level sports competitions. and character. He added that Punjab youth sports festival is also among one the opportunities which provided youth opportunities of participating in sports competitions from village, Mohalla level to union council, Tehsil and District level competitions. He said that now the competitions have reach the level of inter district competitions which reflected that our young male and female players have potentials and talent and can

cluding Attock, Jhelum, Chakwal and Rawalpindi and fans of sports were present on this occasion. Malik Ibrar MNA said that he was always impressed with the game and not with the score and he considered winning and losing as a part of game and the sportsman spirit is actually counted for. He said that the enthusiasm, passion and vigor with which the youth of the area participated in the games proved that chief minister

would represent in competitions to be held in inter divisional competitions at provincial level. Divisional sports officer Manzar Shah and DSO Waheed Baber on this occasion disclosed that teams of Badminton, Squash, Table Tennis and Arm wrestling from Attock , Chakwal, Jhelum and Rawalpindi will participate in competitions and winners would qualify for inter divisional competitions.

MULTAN: Players in action in tug-of-war during Inter-District competitions at Govt Girls High School.


Takanashi eyes history, course safety blasted

US ice skater Abbott not ready to let second medal chance slip

S OCHI —Reigning US champion Jeremy perience. I was on the stand with seven SOCHI—Japanese teenager Sara Takanashi was lian medal hope Torah Bright was less diplomatic, training while medal favourite Torstein Horgmo Abbott warned Tuesday that he would not champions,” he said of receiving his Olymhoping to become the first Olympic Games women’s ski jumping champion on Tuesday as Sochi’s besieged snowboard and freestyle courses came under renewed fire. The 17y e a r - o l d Takanashi, the reigning World Cup champion, is favourite to crown the sport’s 10-year fight to have the discipline feature on the Olympic programme. “I have already decided everything tactically and I’m going to stick to it,” said Takanashi. But in training so far at the RusSki Gorki Jumping Centre, the youngster has been pushed all the way by veteran Daniela Iraschko-Stolz, the openly gay Austrian who has been making headlines as much for her private life as for her prowess on the ski jump hill. Should she win on Tuesday, however, she is adamant that she will not use the podium to protest Russia’s controversial stance on gay issues. “I don’t think it’s a good idea to make protests here. No one cares,” said the 30-year-old, who added her partner’s name — Stolz — to hers upon marriage. To jump pretty good is also a statement.” Reigning world champion Sarah Hendrickson has struggled in Sochi, finishing 27th and 23rd out of 30 jumpers in her two attempts in training. The US teenager has been touted as a potential medal contender but is still fighting back after a knee operation five months ago. Elsewhere on Tuesday, American snowboard star Shaun White, who pulled out of the slopestyle event, was looking for a third successive gold in the halfpipe. But he became the latest competitor to criticise safety standards at the Rosa Khutor Extreme Park, which once again on Tuesday featured a series of spectacular crashes as the heats of the women’s freestyle slopestyle got under way. “I’m hoping they figure out some way to make the pipe a little more manageable. It’s definitely far from perfect,” he said. Ben Bright, the brother and coach of Austra-

launching a bitter tirade at the state of the halfpipe run. “It is dangerous at the moment. You’ve got a mixed event going on — moguls and halfpipe together — so it’s fucking retarded,” he told the Sydney Morning Herald. Canada’s Kaya Turski, the women’s slopestyle ski world champion, suffered one of the more dramatic falls Tuesday, crashing twice on the last jump, once on her stomach and the

second time on her back, failing to reach the final as a result. In her absence, compatriot Dara Howell took gold with a score of 94.20 points on her first run with Devin Logan of the US winning silver and Canada’s Kim Lamarre in bronze. However, Canada’s Yuki Tsubota was stretchered off the course after an ugly-looking fall on her final run. A team spokesman said later that the 20-yearold was conscious but had suffered a jaw injury. Extreme Park has been dogged by criticism of its safety standards and the quality of its construction. In the opening slopestyle snowboarding competition, White pulled out after crashing in

IOC lifts ban on India N EW D ELHI —The International Olympic Committee Tuesday reinstated India, allowing its athletes to compete under their own flag in Sochi, officials from both sides said. “The ban has been lifted. There was an (IOC) executive committee meeting early this morning,” Rajeev Mehta, the Indian Olympic Association secretary general, told AFP. An IOC spokesman confirmed the ban had been lifted, adding that India could now compete under its own flag at the Sochi Winter Olympics. “The decision means Indian athletes can compete for their national Olympic committee. They can walk behind their national flag at the closing ceremony,” IOC

spokesman Mark Adams said. “The Indian flag will be raised in the village, at a time to be announced,” Adams added. India’s three athletes have been competing at the Games under the IOC flag as a result of the country’s suspension. The IOC froze India’s membership in December 2012 after the national association in New Delhi elected a number of tainted officials to key posts. The Indian Olympic Association (IOA) in December bowed to pressure and agreed to keep tainted officials out of the fresh elections. But it rejected a request from India’s sports ministry to hold the new elections before the start of the Sochi Games.—AFP

had to withdraw after breaking his collarbone. However, the International Olympic Committee defended the state of the course, claiming that the mild winter temperatures could be a factor. “It’s always a problem when it is a little bit warm but there is no problem with the halfpipe itself,” said IOC spokesman Mark Adams. “There is no suggestion that there is anything wrong with the halfpipe. As with events

anywhere on snow when it is a little warm it can be a little challenging.” A total of eight golds are up for grabs on Tuesday with Norwegian cross-country star Marit Bjoergen targeting her second title in Sochi, looking to add the freestyle sprint to the skiathlon she won on Saturday. Bjoergen has eight Olympic medals, four of them gold. In the men’s sprint, Nikita Kriukov of Russia looks to defend his 2010 title although the sprint four years ago. Elsewhere, South Korea’s Lee Sang-Hwa defends her 500m speedskating title while golds are also up for grabs in women’s freestyle skiing slopestyle, women’s singles luge and women’s biathlon 10km pursuit.—AFP

Sri Lanka accuses SA of letting it down COLOMBO—Sri Lanka on Tuesday defended its decision to tacitly support a controversial shakeup of cricket’s world body, saying it was left with no choice after South Africa broke ranks over the move. Sri Lanka, Pakistan and South Africa had all initially opposed the revamp of the International Cricket Council’s (ICC) governance and structure when it was debated last month. But Sri Lanka decided to abstain from voting on the move during an ICC board meeting on Saturday, along with Pakistan, after South Africa switched to vote in favour. Eight of ten Test nations in total approved the plans, despite concerns it gives too much power to the “Big Three” of India, England and Australia. Sports Minister Mahindananda Aluthgamage accused South Africa of letting Sri Lanka down at the ICC meeting held in Singapore, saying “we had no choice but to abstain”.—AFP

let his shot at another Olympic medal slip. Abbott, 28, stood on the podium with a bronze in the team event despite a disastrous short programme in which he placed just seventh in a 10-skater field. Evan Lysacek, the reigning Olympic champion, has not competed since taking gold in Vancouver, so Abbott and national silver medallist Jason Brown are carrying US men’s hopes. “It was an epic moment, the moment you dream about, getting an Olympic medal,” said the skater from Colorado, who placed just ninth at the Vancouver Games. “I was extremely upset that I did that for my team. I wanted to pull out something big for them that we would have a good shot to do ... what they did. “I felt I let the team down but they’ve been very supportive. “It was exactly what I needed. It’s rare in life that you get a second chance at things and I’m happy and pleased to get that.” Abbott, said he had been thrown off by the rowdy enthusiasm of the Russian crowd for Yevgeny Plushenko who skated before him, but admitted the biggest difficulty had been finding a rhythm. “It’s easy to lose a sense of time and structure in the Olympic Village,” he explained. “It feels like summer camp, like Neverland. So now we are tightening strings to make sure everything works like a Swiss watch.” Brown, one of the few men not to attempt a quadruple jump in competition, placed fourth in the team free programme. “It was a good start to my Olympic ex-

pic medal with his teammates. Competing against Plushenko, 31, was a dream come true for the 19-year-old skater from Illinois. “He came up to me and said he is a big

US Jeremy Abbott performs in the Men’s Figure Skating Team Short Program at the Iceberg Skating Palace during the Sochi Winter Olympics fan of mine. I couldn?t believe it. He is a very relaxed person but he is also very focused when he is on the ice. “It’s amazing to meet him on Russian soil.”—AFP

England’s future goes on display KANDY—As the majority of English cricket management. supporters mourn the loss of Kevin Pietersen - the stages of grief are all there: denial, anger, depression - a group of players who are actually available for the national side are about to begin perhaps the most important series of their careers. The England development programme that has the England Lions at its summit was devised as the most efficient way to produce Test cricketers. Now it is under its greatest scrutiny as England are forced to delve deeper into their reserve stocks than ever before. The Lions’ performances in Sri Lanka, where a three four-day match series begins against Sri Lanka A on Wednesday, will of course provide only part of the evidence for Test selection in June but a strong showing in alien conditions will be a significant start. English cricket needs cheering up from the debacle down under and this squad can provide a tonic of encouragement that the Test side can be rebuilt. The selectors need some good news too. Pietersen has been cast aside for a new generation and a new band of Test cricketers needs to be forthcoming to justify their decision. The quicker a new team is assembled the better for the

This tour has become the most significant Lions trip ever undertaken. England need potentially six new players for June. Some of them are in Sri Lanka. It’s a strong group. Moeen Ali is in England’s World T20 squad. Scott Borthwick was with England in Australia. Four others have international experience and Sam Robson is in many observers future Test side already. The new generation is already out there, not waiting to be discovered by an ECB sleuth. Borthwick is the latest in a line of, hitherto unsuccessful, legspinners England have tried. A Test-class leggie is a luxury few sides in the history of the game have enjoyed and Borthwick has been greedily lined up to become England’s. He will find assistance in Pallekele, the venue for the opening match of this tour, and a return similar to the 4 for 25 in the first innings of the second warm-up match will turn giddy those clamouring for England’s resurgence. But while a dose of excitement is no bad thing in the current climate, Borthwick needs time. In the second innings of the same match he produced 0 for 54 in 10 overs.—AFP

Team management preferred to keep mum over Mudgal’s report BIPIN DANI Observer Correspondent

CENTURION: Graeme Smith and Michael Clarke with the trophy ahead of the first Test.

MUMBAI—The team management in New Zealand preferred to keep mum over Mukul Mudgal’s probe committee report on IPL where, the captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni is a captain of the Chennai Super Kings (CSK). “We have “not seen” this report (the whole world has read it on the intenets and newspapers) and and we should not comment on this. The mood in the team is excellent”, T. C. Mathews, the manager of the Indian team said over telephone from New Zealand. Following defeat in the first Test (Auckland), the second Test is to commence on Feb. 14. Mumbai Police wants the order from the higher court to expedite the trials in the lower court against the accused. This was revealed by Nandkumar Gopale, the Investigation Officer, Crime Branch. Speaking exclusively, he said, “there are several old cases pending in the criminal court here. Even the cases of 2005 are not cleared and we want the higher court orders from High Court or Supreme Court to expedite the case against the fixers”. “We have already filed charge sheets against 22 accused. The list includes foreigners”, he added. Limited scope The old probe committee, which was appointed by the BCCI says their scope

was limited in the investigation. Justice T Jayarama Chouta and Justice R Balasubramanian had exonerated Gurunath Mayeppan, the son-in-law of BCCI president N. Srinivasan. Speaking exclusively from Chennai they said, “our scope of investigation in this matter was limited. Mudgal’s committee had a wider role and they were appointed by the Supreme Court. Obviously they had more access. We have nothing to say if Gurunath Mayeppan’s name has surfaced again. Our report was not based on any pressure from any quarter”. Offer to appear Former railway employee, and an activist Atul Kumar had offered to appear before the new probe committee. However, his wish was not granted. “I wanted to show them how the fixing is being done. I have narrated the sequences in my two books (Inside The Boundary Line and Bettors Beware). The books were sent to the probe committee and I am sure more truths will come out now”, he said over telephone from Kolkata, exclusively again. Thanks in the report Apart for thanking various people in preparing the report, Mudgal committee has not forgotten to thank Mayank Parikh. The man from Mumbai helped the probe committee members (and those who appeared) logistically by arranging their tickets for the travel, bookings of hotels etc.


Older kids can teach younger peers to be healthy

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LEMENTARY school children who took part in a healthy living pro gram with older peers reduced their waist sizes and showed improvements in self-esteem, according to a new Canadian study. In the so-called Healthy Buddies program, students learn about healthy foods, physical activity and positive body image from older kids, rather than adult teachers or coaches. Researchers say the program could potentially reduce rates of childhood obesity. “We recognized that in Manitoba and particularly in our northern regions rates of childhood obesity are fairly high,” Jonathan McGavock told Reuters Health. McGavock, from the University of Manitoba in Winnipeg, co-authored the study that was a collaboration between his university and policymakers in the province of Manitoba. “About one in three children are overweight or obese and in some communities it’s up to one in two, so 50 percent of our youth,” he said. McGavock said previous schoolbased interventions or afterschool programs hadn’t worked to reduce obesity. “A new model had come out where a group at the University of British Colum-

bia (also in Canada) had developed a peer mentoring program that relied on older peers delivering the healthy living messages to younger peers and it looked like it had worked,” McGavock said. He said early studies of the Healthy Buddies program looked promising, but Manitoba policymakers wanted stronger evidence and to see whether they could disseminate it widely across the province. The program features 21 weekly lessons focused on physical activity, healthy eating or positive body image using three slogans: “Go Move!”, “Go Fuel!” and “Go Feel Good!” In the fall of 2009, the researchers enrolled 647 students from 19 elementary schools in Manitoba in their study. Students from 10 schools were randomly selected to receive the Healthy Buddies curriculum and nine were put on a waiting list and served as a control group. About half of the students attended rural schools and 36 percent were overweight or obese. At the start of the study, the researchers measured kids’ waists, calculated their body mass index - a measure of weight relative to height - and assessed the children’s physical activity and fitness levels, self-esteem, knowledge of healthy living and eating habits.

Sindh CM for foolproof security to anti-polio volunteers

Chief Minister Syed Qaim Ali Shah presiding over a meeting to ensure foolproof security cover to anti-polio teams at CM House.

STAFF REPORTER K ARACHI —Sindh Chief Minister (CM) Syed Qaim Ali Shah has strictly directed the Law Enforcing Agencies to ensure fool-proof security cover to Anti-Polio teams in Karachi and stressed upon them to evolve such a strategy so that neither any attack on Anti-Polio team be made nor Polio case be emerged in future. He said that likewise terrorists, Polio virus was also big threat to nation and officers and organization concerned must combat with these twin menaces. This he directed while presiding over meeting to ensure fool-proof security cover to AntiPolio teams in Karachi held at CM House Tuesday. The Additional Chief Secretary Home Syed Mumtaz Ali Shah, Secretary to CM Sindh Rai Sikandar, Additional IG of Police Shahid Hayat, Additional Secretary Health Dr Mansoor Zaidi, Dr Muhammad Salah and Dr Motoku from World Health Organization (W.H.O), Dr Ahmed Ali focal person on Polio and other officers of lined departments attended the meeting. The CM said that henceforth SSP of the concerned district would be responsible for any

Governor Dr Ishratul Ibad, Senior Minister Nisar Khuhro, Sindh Assembly Speaker Agha Siraj Durrani, US Consul General Michael Dodman, US ambassador Richard Olson and MQM leader Farooq Sattar cutting a cake to celebrate anniversary of US independence at a reception held at the residence of US consul general.—PO photo by Sultan Chaki

KMC Administrator reviews arrangements of Aalmi Mushaira STAFF REPORTER KARACHI—Karachi Metropolitan Corporation (KMC) Administrator Rauf Akhtar Farooqui has said that hosting of Aalmi Mushaira was an honor for Karachi and KMC will fully cooperate in the holding of Aalmi Mushaira. He said this while talking to a delegation of Sakinan-e Shehr-e Quaid Mushaira Committee. The delegation under the supervision of Azhar Abbas Hashmi met with Administrator Karachi. On this occasion representatives of Mushaira Committee Mehmood Ahmed Khan, Farhan-urRehman, Najamuddin Shaikh, Mushtaq Ahmed,

Muhammad Aslam, M. Yameen Khan, Hassan Imam Siddiqui, Shahab Mehboob Ghori and from KMC Director Media Management Ali Hassan Sajid, Director Medical Services Muhammad Ali Abbasi, Director E&IP Bashir Saddozai and others were also present. Administrator Karachi said that Mushairas were part of our cultural traditions which provide the opportunity to citizens to listen and review our language and literature while promoting the language. Karachi Metropolitan Corporation will play key role in the holding of Aalmi Mushaira in the city. Later while reviewing the arrangements for Aalmi

Bilawal condemns cinema blasts in Peshawar STAFF REPORTER K ARACHI —Patron-in-Chief of Pakistan People’s Party Bilawal Bhutto Zardari has strongly condemned the terrorist attacks on a cinema in Peshawar today, which resulted into loss of precious human lives and called it an inhuman and beastly act. In a statement, Bilawal Bhutto Zardari said that mosques, schools, hospitals, cinemas and other public places are being attacked by the terrorists to keep the people illiterate, maimed and spiritually hollow to hold the masses of Pakistan captive. “Terrorists need to be dealt with an iron hand instead of appeasing them to protect Pakistan and its founding ideology”, he added. PPP Patron sympathized with the families of victims who lost their lives and limbs in the blasts and expressed solidarity with them.

Mushaira he said that it was a cultural event and such events emerge soft image of the city and citizens. He said that the efforts of Sakinan-e Shehr-e Quaid Mushaira were worth admiring and promoting these kinds of activities was very important.

breach in security cover to Anti-Polio teams and no excuse in the regard would be maintained. He was of the view that attacks on Anti-Polio teams are not only affecting the Anti-Polio campaign but also causing bad name to the Government as well, which could not be tolerated. He directed Provincial Health Authorities to ensure 100% coverage of Administrating Anti-Polio drops to the children under -5 years of age by activating mobile and fixed medical units assigned for the purpose. The CM directed in principal secretary to monitor the security arrangements for Anti Polio teams and immediately reports him in case of any bottleneck or security lope holes. The Additional IG of Police Shahid Hayat while briefing the meeting about security measures said that a fool proof security plan has been planned in consultation with Health Department. He said that as many as 3000 Police personals would be deployed in the areas, where Anti-Polio teams to perform their task/ duties. He said that all entries and exist points of these areas would be closed and strict vigilance would be made on miscreants/ terrorists. He said that strategy to provide fool proof security to

the Anti-Polio teams has been made in such a way so that neither terrorist could enter nor escape from the encircled area of Anti-Polio campaign. The Additional Secretary Health Dr Mansoor Zaidi while briefing the meeting said that keeping in view the sensitivity and vulnerability of Polio virus; the areas of Karachi have been bifurcated in three categories because of its sensitivity. He said that more attention was being paid to the areas fallen under category-I, where multiple rounds of Polio drops and all multiple intervention of Health campaign has been planned up to May 2014. He said that total 2, 147,845 children under 05 years of age residing in areas from 1 to 3 category would be administered Polio drops with facility of 7832 Polio workers in Karachi. Dr Muhammad Salah from WHO expressed his satisfaction on the Anti-Polio campaign in the Interior Sindh and also pointed out difficulties because of law and order situation in Karachi. He said that Karachi and Peshawar were Polio virus affected cities of Pakistan and same must be treated accordingly.

Police preparing arrest Fahad Aziz STAFF REPORTER K ARACHI —Fahad Aziz, worker of the Muttahidda Qaumi Movement (MQM) would likely be arrested again by Karachi Police as Police claimed they had gathered vital information about his involvement in criminal activities. Police claimed they had also raided his home on day of Mayoo, a period when the groom is restricted to stay at home till his marriage day. Police had arrested Fahad Aziz on his marriage day when he was returning home after his marriage was matured legally. He was arrested from Shah Faisal Colony

Bridge and was taken to Shah Faisal Colony Police Stations, where he was subjected to brutal physical and mental torture. On his arrest, the MQM had along with families of groom and bride staged a protest sit-in at the Karachi Press club at about 2 AM and then at the Sindh Chief Minister House. MQM Coordination Committee had stated that the party would launch a protest movement against Police atrocities and the MQM Chief had also address a press conference from London the other day and had appealed to the Chief of Army Staff general Raheel Sharif to take notice of Police atrocities.

Shabana Aazmi pays tribute to Bilawal for organizing Sindh Festival IRFAN ALIGI KARACHI—Bilawal Bhutto Zardari deserved due applause and tribute for launch of Sindh Festival in a quite versatile style due to which the culture of Sindh had gained momentum across the world. People of India and Pakistan had both desires for free cordial interaction, peace and brotherhood and promotion of arts and culture between the two countries. Therefore, the people of the two countries should lay stress on their respective governments to come closer to each other for the sake of peace and prosperity of the people of the two countries. Legendary Indian film star Shabana Aazmi expressed these views on the occasion of her visit to Bagh Ibn-e Qasim in Clifton, Karachi Tuesday. She was accompanied by PPPP leader Syed Owais Muzaffar Hashmi. Shabana Aazmi visited around the stalls of the ‘City Festival’ being es-

tablished at Bagh Ibn-e Qasim in Clifton, Karachi. She also did some shopping there and purchased some items that carried a depiction of Sindh’s culture. “I feel sense of oneness here in Pakistan and my mother also used to visit Pakistan and was fond of buying goods of Pakistani origin’, Shabana asserted. “ Pakistan People’s Party Parliamentarian Chairman Bilawal Bhutto Zardari deserved due tribute for his efforts he had organized the Sindh Festival due to which the culture of Sindh had been introduced to the people around the world.” Speaking on the occasion, PPPP leader Syed Owais Muzaffar Hashmi said that Bilawal Bhutto Zardari had amid the suffocating situation of arson and carnage across the country had organized Sindh Festival, which provided a platform to the people to attain satiety to their recreational needs.

Food Minister takes notice of mixing damaged wheat into good wheat STAFF REPORTER KARACHI —Sindh Minister for Food Jam Mehtab Hussain Dahar, while taking serious notice of mixing damaged wheat into healthy and neat wheat by the employees of Procurement Centre Mirpur Mathelo, has suspended the food supervisor concerned and ordered to inquire into the matter.


Older kids can teach younger peers to be healthy

E

LEMENTARY school children who took part in a healthy living pro gram with older peers reduced their waist sizes and showed improvements in self-esteem, according to a new Canadian study. In the so-called Healthy Buddies program, students learn about healthy foods, physical activity and positive body image from older kids, rather than adult teachers or coaches. Researchers say the program could potentially reduce rates of childhood obesity. “We recognized that in Manitoba and particularly in our northern regions rates of childhood obesity are fairly high,” Jonathan McGavock told Reuters Health. McGavock, from the University of Manitoba in Winnipeg, co-authored the study that was a collaboration between his university and policymakers in the province of Manitoba. “About one in three children are overweight or obese and in some communities it’s up to one in two, so 50 percent of our youth,” he said. McGavock said previous schoolbased interventions or afterschool programs hadn’t worked to reduce obesity. “A new model had come out where a group at the University of British Colum-

bia (also in Canada) had developed a peer mentoring program that relied on older peers delivering the healthy living messages to younger peers and it looked like it had worked,” McGavock said. He said early studies of the Healthy Buddies program looked promising, but Manitoba policymakers wanted stronger evidence and to see whether they could disseminate it widely across the province. The program features 21 weekly lessons focused on physical activity, healthy eating or positive body image using three slogans: “Go Move!”, “Go Fuel!” and “Go Feel Good!” In the fall of 2009, the researchers enrolled 647 students from 19 elementary schools in Manitoba in their study. Students from 10 schools were randomly selected to receive the Healthy Buddies curriculum and nine were put on a waiting list and served as a control group. About half of the students attended rural schools and 36 percent were overweight or obese. At the start of the study, the researchers measured kids’ waists, calculated their body mass index - a measure of weight relative to height - and assessed the children’s physical activity and fitness levels, self-esteem, knowledge of healthy living and eating habits.

Federal Minister for Religious Affairs and Interfaith Harmony, Sardar Muhammad Yousaf meeting with religious scholars on sectarian harmony at Aiwan-e-Auqaf.

Terror bid foiled LAHORE—A terror bid was foiled at the Jamia Manzoor Islamia in Cantt area here. Jamia Manzoor Islamia spokesman said that the security guards overpowered a suspected suicide bomber on recce approaching the gate of the Jamia. Maps of sensitive places were recovered from the suspected terrorist. The suspect revealed that he hails from Swabi, and was given the task of triggering a feud between the Pushto and Punjabi speaking people by his leaders in Mohmand Agency, while a mission has been sent to Karachi also for creating rift and animosity between different sections of people.— INP

33 teachers upgraded L AHORE —Additional Di-

Visitors keenly viewing paintings displayed during an exhibition at Ajaeb Art Gallery.

Importance being given to process of development STAFF REPORTER LAHORE—A delegation of assembly members of Muslim League-Q, Jamaat-e-Islami and Peoples Party met Punjab Chief Minister Muhammad Shahbaz Sharif at assembly chambers here today and informed him of development problems of their respective areas. They included opposition members Dr. Waseem, Aamir Sultan Cheema, Dr. Afzal, Waqas Moqal, Shahab ud Din, Ahmed Shah Khagga, Kh. Nizam Mehboob and Qazi Ahmed Saeed. Speaking on the occasion, the assembly members of the opposition commended the efforts of Chief Minister Muhammad Shahbaz Sharif for the development of the province. They said that due to special attention being paid to south Punjab, the pace of development has accelerated in this region. They said that unprecedented development activities have been carried out in

PTI offers condolence LAHORE—Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf chief Imran Khan,provincial president Ejaz Ch, Dr. Yasmeen Rashid, Andleeb Abbas and other officer bearers on Tuesday expressed deep sorrow and grief on the sad demise of actor Abid Kashmiri’s brother-in-law. In a condolence message, they prayed to Almighty Allah to rest the departed soul in eternal peace and grant courage to the bereaved family members to bear the loss with fortitude.—APP

Bahawalpur, Pakpattan, Rahim Yar Khan, Dera Ghazi Khan and other districts of South Punjab. The opposition assembly members said that they have a separate identity in assembly and should not be associated with Tehrik-e-Insaf in the House. They said that Shahbaz Sharif is working with commitment for the development of the province and welfare of the masses and honest and hard working officers posted in these districts are paying fullest attention to development schemes. Talking to opposition assembly members, the Chief Minister said that due importance will be given to their valuable suggestions in the process of development. He said that uplift schemes are being completed expeditiously in the province especially South Punjab. He said that elected representatives of the masses deserve all respect and their suggestions are as important as those of the members of the treasury benches.

Iconic arts works on display

rector General (HQ) Lahore Development Authority (LDA) Mariam Kayani has ordered the upgradation of 33 Secondary School Teachers, both male and female, working in LDA Model Schools from BS-16 to BS-17. Twenty three female teachers include Abida Shaheen, Nazia Ashraf, Shumaila Moona Tariq, Rukhsana Nazir, Mussarat Qudoce, Nazia Dilawar, Shehla Ihtisham, Ghulam Fatima, Uzma Khadim Hussain, Shumaila Afsheen, Bushra Mukhtar, Memoona Majeed, Sadia Rafique, Samrah Dilpazeer, Tayyaba Abbas, Razia Sultana, Shumaila Sadaf, Farida Siddique, Kanwal Haroon, Saima Saher,Nabila Mehmood, Iram Adil and Shaheen Riaz. Ten male teachers are Muhammad Asif Iqbal, Tariq Azeem, Muhammad Yousaf Anjum, Muhammad Ahmed, Ghulam Nabi Alvi, Misbah-ul-Hassan, Irfan Haider, Fahim Adil, Muhammad Sajid Ramzan and Shakeel Ahmed.— APP

Minister for joint efforts to eliminate sectarianism L AHORE —Federal Minister for Religious Affairs and Interfaith Harmony, Sardar Muhammad Yousaf has stressed the need for making collective efforts to find out root-causes that were destroying the peace of the country. The minister said that a principle must be formulated to refrain such incidents of sectarianism and hatred. He was addressing a meeting of representative Ulema of various sects here at Awain-e-Auqaf on Tuesday. The purpose of the meeting was to improve Sectarian Harmony and gather suggestion from different religious scholars to chalk out a unanimous code of conduct for lasting peace. Provincial Minister for Religious Affairs, Atta Muhammad Manika, Secretary Religious Affairs,

Dr. Muhammad Saqib and DG Religious Affairs Federal Government, Manzoor Ahmed Khairi also addressed the occasion. The meeting after detailed discussion issued a 14 point joint declaration regarding the promotion of sectarian harmony. The features of declaration include: to create unity among muslims, condemn of any terrorism in the country. Reconciliation among all the ulemas from different sectarians. To respect the ulemas of other sectarians. All ulema and scholars should make balance speeches and writings. To ensure the protection and respect of all the holy places of different sectarians. To restore the confidence of ulemas through collective efforts. To

resolve all the sectarian conflicts through dialogue and consultation. Elimination of excitative data in audio/ video or written and abstention for the next time. Respect the Ummuhat-ulMomineen, Sahaba Karam, Ehl-e-Bait, Tabieen, Tiba Tabieen, Anbia Karam and all ulema. To protect the rights of others and pay one’e own duties with devotion. Unity among ulemas over national issues. To make efforts for establishment of peace and end of terrorism in the country. To make a modern literature on research basis for the youth of new age. The minister also stressed the meeting to arrange same meetings and seminars for creating national consensus and establishment of peace.—APP

13 development schemes of Rs11869m approved

L AHORE —Punjab Food L AHORE —The Punjab government on Vehari at a cost of Rs 288.103 million, Wid- Authority (PFA) Chairman Tuesday approved thirteen development schemes with an estimated cost of Rs 11,869.066 million. The approved development schemes included: Upgradation of Thalassemia Unit and Bone Marrow Transplant center at B.V. Hospital Bahalpur. (Revised) at a cost of Rs 908.632 million, Enhancing Vegetable Production in Punjab at a cost of Rs 410.870 million, Replacement of Outlived, Deeper and Inadequate Water Supply Lines in WASA, Lahore (Gastro Phase-II) at a cost of Rs 1917.650 million. Construction of Leftover (SPBUSP) Works of Sullage Carrier from Bosan Road Disposal Station to Sewage Treatment Plant (STP) at Suraj Miani and STP to River Chenab, Multan. (Revised) at a cost of Rs 751.490 million, Construction of Express Way from Shujabad to Nag Shah L=26.15 km District Multan at a cost of Rs 1295.473 million. Construction of Bypass at Kehror Pacca length=12.50 km in District Lodhran at a cost of Rs 282.250 million, Widening / Improvement of Tibba Sultan Pur-Mailsi Road length:35.00 km in District Vehari at a cost of Rs 424.696 million, Widening / Improvement of road DM Road to District boundary Khanewal (length: 21.70 km) in District

ening / Improvement of Lahore Sargodha Mianwali Banuu Road Art:2 km No. 297.80 to 346.58=48.78 km & Jinnah Barrage Link Road (length 7.71(-)2.20=5.51 km) total length=54.29 km in District Mianwali at a cost of Rs 2018.138 million, Widening / Improvement of road from Adda Jahan Khan to Kotala Jam Via 36 Wala Khokha & Samlan Wala Morr (length=21.00 km) in District Bhakkar at a cost of Rs. 242.505 million, Rehabilitation / Improvement of Muridke-Narowal Road km No.42/0 to 75/ 21 (length=33.21 km) in District Narowal (Dualization of Road) at a cost of Rs 1586.125 million, Construction / Widening of road from Lahore Ferozepur Road Kahna to Halloki along both sides of Butcher Khana Distributary (length=8.50 km) (Revised) at a cost of Rs 893.365 million and Rehabilitation / Improvement Lawrence College Jhika Gali Bye Pass Road length = 9.35 km, District Rawalpindi at a cost of Rs 412.814 million. These schemes were approved in the 30th meeting of Provincial Development working Party of current fiscal year 2013-14 presided over by the Punjab Planning and Development Board Chairman, Muhammad Irfan Elahi.—APP

Justice (R) Amir Raza Khan has given approval for opening PFA offices in Gujranwala, Rawalpindi and Multan. The approval was accorded in a meeting to review different steps of the Punjab Food Authority and for their approval which was presided over by PFA Chairman here on Tuesday. The PFA Chairman also approved the PFA Information System which was also approved by the Punjab Information Technology Board (PITB). Memorandum of Understandings (MOUs) signed between Punjab Food Authority and the Government College University Faisalabad and (PFA) and GAIN were also approved in the meeting. Punjab Food Authority logo was also unanimously approved by the members of the authority.— APP

PES rescues 518 accidents’ victims

L A H O R E —A group exhibition of paintings titled “Icons of Art from Pakistan” will be inaugurated here on Thursday February 13. The exhibition is being hosted by Ejaz Art Gallery where Mrs Tehmina Durrani wife of Chief Minister Shahbaz Sharif would inaugurate the show. According to the organisers, twelve artists’ works will be displayed including late Allah Bux, Sadequain, Ahmed Pervez and AR Chughtai, Collin David, A.R. Nagori alongside the works by other veterans including Saeed Ak-htar, Jamil Naqsh, Zulqarnain Haider, Bashir Ahmed and Ismail Gulgee. Interestingly, works by M F Hussain, original member of Progressive Artsits Group, have also been included in the exhibition in tribute to the influence cast by him on art sphere in the entire sub-continent. The display is to continue till March 1.—APP

PFA approves different initiatives

A vendor selling heart shape balloons in connection with upcoming Valentine Day.

L AHORE —Punjab Emergency Service has provided rescue service to the victims of 518 road accidents in the Punjab during the last 24 hours. According to Rescue 1122, eight persons were killed while 398 sustained serious injuries who were shifted to different hospitals. The statistics showed that 121 accidents were reported in the city, which affected 127 persons placing the provincial capital at top of the list followed by 51 accidents in Faisalabad with 61 victims and Gujranwala at third with 35 accidents and 37 victims.—APP

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