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Circular debt issue resolved, claims Yousaf Raza Gilani

Vladimir Putin declines to back Syria’s Bashar al-Assad

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Whatmore arrives to take charge as Pakistan cricket coach

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Rs15.00 Vol ii no 245 22 pages islamabad — peshawar edition

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Coalition govt gets two-thirds majority in 104-member Upper House with 74 seats PPP becomes single largest party in Senate with 41 seats Mohsin leghari stages upset in Punjab with PMl-n’s support

Saturday, 3 March, 2012 Rabi-ul-Sani 8, 1433

PPP, allies sweep Senate polls

ISLAMABAD/LAHORE/KARACHI/PESHAWAR/QUETTA mIAN AbRAR/NAumAN TASleem/ISmAIl dIlAwAR/SHAmIm SHAHId/SHAHzAdA zulFIqAR

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HE Pakistan People’s Party-led ruling coalition obtained two-thirds majority in the Senate on Friday after winning 41 out of the 54 seats put up for contest, ending with the support of 74 members in the 104member Upper House of parliament. Per unofficial results, the PPP won 19 seats of the Upper House to emerge as the single largest party in the Senate – for the first time after 1970s, taking its total tally to 41. Previously, the ruling party had 27 seats, but five of its members had to retire on March 12 and would have reduced the party’s strength to 22. With this victory, the coalition government has now majority in both houses of parliament. According to unofficial results, the ruling party grabbed 19, the Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz won eight, the PMLQuaid, Jamiat Ulema-e-Islam-Fazl (JUI-F) and Muttahida Qaumi Movement (MQM) four each, the Awami National Party (ANP) seven, Balochistan National Party-Awami two and five independents, including four from FATA and one from Punjab, made it to the Senate. UPSETS

The win of Mohsin Khan Leghari of the PML-Q proved to be the biggest upset of the elections from Punjab, as the ruling party’s nominee Aslam Gill was defeated by four votes. ANP’s Daud Khan also surprised many by winning from Balochistan, but his win was result of a deal between the PPP and ANP which had only three members in the Balochistan Assembly and the PPP arranged at least seven more votes for him. The PML-N’s Nisar Khan Malakand also won a seat from Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, though his party did not have the required strength in the assembly. PAKISTAN MUSLIM LEAGUE-QUAID

KARACHI: Supporters of Pakistan People’s Party candidate Saeed Ghani lift him on their shoulders at the Punjab Assembly after his victory was announced by the provincial election commission on Friday. online

10 troops, 50 militants killed in Khyber, orakzai Taliban suicide bomber kills 23 li militants coming out of a mosque after Friday prayers

Iran gas pIpelIne

Think again, US warns Pakistan WASHINGTON INP

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The PML-Q was the biggest loser in the Senate elections as it was reduced from a majority party to a minority party with 21 of its members of the total 22 scheduled to retire. However, the Q league also managed to grab another four seats in the Senate polls and took its number from one to five – thanks to the PPP, which accommodated its isolated ally. MUTTAHIDA QAUMI MOVEMENT The MQM won four new seats. Its earlier strength was six senators, but three of its Senate members were due to retire. AWAMI NATIONAL PART Y The Awami National Party (ANP) won seven seats, taking its total number to 12. It had six seats in the Upper House and Senator Alyas Bilour was the only ANP member to retire. However, Bilour was re-elected as technocrat. PAKISTAN MUSLIM LEAGUE-FUNCTIONAL The PML-Functional also managed to win a seat as former Sindh chief minister Muzaffar Hussain Shah was elected to the Upper House. This would be his first election to the Senate. The PML-F has regained its lone senator due to retire on March 12. BALOCHISTAN NATIONAL PART Y-AWAMI The BNP-Awami won another two seats to take its total number to four. Its president, Mir Israrullah Zehri, had to retire on March 12, but he was re-elected. CoalItIon government’s strength: The Senate election results showed that 74 senators, including 41 from the PPP, five from the PML-Q, seven from the MQM, 12 of the ANP, one from PML-F, four of BNP-A and four from FATA, were siding with the coalition government. Mohsin Leghari, the independent candidate elected from Punjab, has yet to decide about his future. opposItIon musCle: The opposition got only 12 seats, with eight candidates winning from the PML-N and four from the JUI-F. PAKISTAN MUSLIM LEAGUE-NAWA Z The PML-N won eight seats in the Senate polls. It had seven senators and only Senator Ishaq Dar was to retire on March 12. However, Dar was elected unopposed and the PML-N now has a total 14 members in the Senate. The surprise win of Nisar Khan Malakand from Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KP) Continued on page 04

PESHAWAR SHAmIm SHAHId

A suicide bombing carried out by Pakistani Taliban against another militant outfit killed 23 people and injured 30 others, while 10 soldiers and around 50 militants were reported dead in clashes between security forces and extremists in Khyber and Orakzai agencies on Friday. A suicide bomber targeted Lashkar-e-Islam (LI) militants while they were coming out of a mosque after offering Friday prayers, killing 23 people and injuring 30 others. The incident occurred in the Nakai Mehrbaan area of Tirah Valley, Khyber Agency. Tribal sources said almost all the victims belonged to the LI militant

group headed by Mangal Bagh. Tehrik-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) Dera Adamkhel chapter claimed responsibility of the attack. Three other blasts also rattled the area, but so far no human casualties or property losses have been reported. Earlier, dozens of militants ambushed a contingent of security forces advancing through the Lakar Baba area of Bazaar Zakhakhel, which is considered the gateway to Tirah Valley. The area is dominated by Zawdeen clan of the Zakhakhel Afridi tribe. The surprise and powerful attack claimed the lives of 10 soldiers and injured three others, sources said. The retaliatory offensive against the militants continued for a couple of hours, and security forces claimed to have killed 23

militants besides injuring several others. An important commander of Lashkar-e-Islam was also reportedly killed in the operation. Separately, 23 militants were killed and 12 were injured in Upper Orakzai Agency when security forces pounded militant hideouts with the help of bomber jets, a military official said. It is relevant to mention that a high-level meeting held recently at Governor’s House, Peshawar decided to intensify military action against militants in Khyber Agency. Although high ranking authorities claimed that the TTP and LI had agreed on a truce, the two militant groups remain hostile to each other in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and the adjoining tribal belt.

The United States has asked Pakistan to “think twice” on its plans to go ahead with the construction of a gas pipeline from Iran, cautioning Islamabad that Tehran is an “unreliable” partner. The American statement came a day after Foreign Minister Hina Rabbani Khar refused to tow the US line on the IranPakistan gas pipeline and said that Islamabad would go ahead with the project. In fact, the two countries appear to be headed towards confrontation on this contentious issue. On Wednesday, US Secretary of State, Hillary Clinton said there would be “dangerous implications” for Pakistan if it went ahead with the gas pipeline project, which in Islamabad was seen as nothing but a strong warning coming from the Obama administration. “I don’t think what the secretary said was appreciably different than what we’ve been saying for weeks and weeks publicly, privately, if not months on this subject. Continued on page 04

All ‘escape routes’ for Haqqani blocked ISLAMABAD TAHIR NIAz

The memo commission on Friday did everything possible to block all ‘escape routes’ so far available to Husain Haqqani in the memo scandal by putting him on notice to be available in Pakistan, directing him to submit copies of the bills of his private and official mobile phones and the PIN of his ‘missing’ Blackberry sets, with a warning that otherwise the commission would summon his wife, family mem-

bers and the foreign secretary, with whom he must have had contact through his Blackberry, in an attempt to trace the his handset’s PIN. As the commission is nearing the completion of its task with more evidence pouring in against Haqqani during the cross-examination of Ijaz, it seems in no mood to hear more excuses from Haqqani about the missing Blackberry sets, submission of Blackberry PIN, mobile phone bills and his availability before the commission. “We want to get down to the truth but

there is no primary evidence coming from your side,” Justice Qazi Faez Isa, the chairman of the commission, told Haqqani’s counsel. The commission directed the former ambassador to the US to either admit or deny the charges as ‘simple denial’ of everything on record against him would no longer work. “He (Haqqani) should take a clear position on the charges leveled by Mansoor Ijaz against him and subsequently inform the commission in writing within the next nine days. Continued on page 04


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02 News

Saturday 3 march 2012

newS

ISlAmAbAD

Today’s

cArtOOn

CdA, govt reluctant to name road after Shahbaz bhatti ‘osama’ filming in India disrupted by VHP activists

Quick look

Story on Page 05

Story on Page 07

Saudi Arabia holds Pakistanis, Iranians over drugs bust rIYaDh: Saudi Arabia has arrested 11 Pakistanis and Iranians allegedly involved in smuggling hashish from Iran into the kingdom, the Interior Ministry said on Friday, a charge that carries the death sentence. Saudi security services “foiled an attempt to smuggle half a tonne (1,102 pounds) of hashish through the kingdom’s eastern coasts”, the ministry said in a statement carried by state news agency SPA. “The narcotic was seized and 11 people involved in its smuggling were arrested — six Pakistanis and five Iranians.” “Preliminary investigations have shown that those arrested are part of a criminal network involved in drug trafficking from Iranian territories into the kingdom and Gulf Cooperation Council states,” it added. The group was arrested while they were “handing over the drugs” in Saudi Arabia’s territorial waters, it said. Earlier on Friday, a Saudi national was reportedly beheaded after being convicted of smuggling over one million “banned narcotic pills” into the country. AFP

Dr Afridi being treated per local law: FO IslamaBaD: The Foreign Office on Friday said that Dr Shakil Afridi, a Pakistani doctor detained for allegedly assisting CIA to spy on al Qaeda chief Osama bin Laden before he was killed in a secret US raid, was being dealt with in accordance with the law and that Pakistan expected other countries to respect its legal process. “He is being dealt with in accordance with our law. We expect all to respect our legal process, and refrain from making groundless insinuations and drawing premature conclusions,” said Foreign Office Spokesperson Abdul Basit in a brief statement. STAFF RePoRT

24 held for torturing, shaving woman’s head in Sialkot sIalKot: Police arrested 24 people allegedly involved in shaving the head of a woman and forcing her out of the village for refusing to enter into wedlock. According to details, armed men attacked the house of Noor Fatima, daughter of Allah Ditta, in Kot Mithrah village of Sambrial tehsil after her family rejected the marriage proposal of a local family. The attackers subjected the woman to torture and shaved her head, forcing her to roam the streets and later expelled her from the village. The victim took shelter with her relatives in Gujranwala and informed the police, which responded to the complaint and arrested 24 accused. A case has been registered and investigations are underway. INP

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PPP Sindh MPs blast Opp for election expenditure Sindh election commissioner differs, says Senate polls did not cost province more than few thousand g

KARACHI

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ISmAIl dIlAwAR

O W I N G to go for the next general elections with the prevailing reconciliation spirit, the PPP and the MQM lawmakers in the Sindh Assembly slammed the self-exiled leader of PML Likeminded Sindh Dr Arbab Ghulam Rahim for wasting the province’s time and resources by contesting the Senate election with “small dots”. While the PPP lawmakers were critical of expenditures incurred by the provincial government at the hands of only opposition party, the PML Likeminded, Sindh Election Commissioner Sono Khan Baloch said the Senate polls had not cost the province more than a few thousand. Friday saw Speaker Nisar Khuhro calling the provincial assembly to order at 11:15am and calling it a day within 30 minutes. No business was kept on the Order of the Day except the Question Hour which was deferred until Monday 10am. Earlier, the speaker termed the day “historic for Pakistan where the sacrifices of his party leadership had brought democracy back on track”. “The democratic government we had formed is passing through a peaceful transition,” Khuhro told the lawmakers, who were hardly in number required for a complete quorum. Law Minister Ayaz Soomro said all democrats were present in the House to use their right of self determination. Without naming anyone, he blasted Arbab, the former chief minister of Sindh, saying those hatching conspiracies against democracy in Pakistan had come into being from the “cradle of a dictator”.

KARACHI: Sindh Information Minister Shazia Marri and Raza Rabbani arrive at the Sindh Assembly to participate in the Senate election. online

Local Government Minister Agha Siraj Durrani was the next to criticise the PML Likeminded for wasting the time and resources of the provincial government to gain media publicity. “I felicitate all here as we have won (today’s) elections against the small dots they are using against us,” he told a desk-thumping House. Attributing his side’s victory to the reconciliation-driven policies of the PPP-led coalition government, the local government minister said the coalition partners would also contest the general elections, which he said would be held on its due time next year, with the same spirit. The speaker looked disturbed when he saw Rafique Engineer taking the floor and lots of hand raised to follow him saying everybody seemed having intended to speak on the polling day while the time was short.Engineer, congratulating the Baloch people on the Culture Day, flayed the op-

position for even not having polling agents for the election. “Those who brought us together today are not coming for the polling,” he referred to Arbab, living in exile foe last four years. Khalid Ahmed of the MQM toed the same line and said even continued conspiracies could not been able to affect the prevailing reconciliatory climate. “Today we see the show of this reconciliation,” he added. Later in a post-session media talk, Information Minister Shazia Marri made the Likeminded for making the resourceconstrained Sindh government incurring extra expenditures on Friday’s Senate elections without having a wining vote bank in the electoral college. Baloch did not share her concern saying the expenditure was “in thousands”. “The printing of ballet papers would have cost us Rs 2,000 and the stationery not more than Rs 2,000 to 3,000,” he said.

Hafeez Shaikh, Asim Hussain made ministers again ISLAMABAD GNI

Prime Minister Yousaf Raza Gilani on Friday advised the president to approve the de-notification of the appointment of Dr Abdul Hafeez Shaikh as adviser to the PM with the status of federal minister in terms of Article 93 of the constitution read with Serial no10 of Schedule V-B to the Rules of Business, 1973. The passage of the 20th Constitutional Amendment Act validated the

election process of the members of Senate/National Assembly which were elected after April 19, 2010 and they are to be restored to their actual positions. Dr Hafeez Shaikh has also been reelected as senator. In the same process, the prime minister advised the president to discontinue the appointment of Dr Abdul Hafeez Shaikh as adviser to the PM as he had been restored as the minister of finance, revenue, planning and development, economic affairs and statistics on February 28, 2012, the date on

which the 20th Amendment came into force. The prime minister also restored Dr Asim Hussain to the status of federal minister by approving the de-notification of his appointment as special assistant to the prime minister with the status of federal minister “The passage of the 20th Constitutional Amendment Act validated the election process of the members of Senate/National Assembly which were elected after April 19, 2010 and they are to be restored to their actual positions,” an official statement said.


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Saturday 3 march 2012

FOreIGn newS

ArtS & entertAInment

Cameron admits riding horse in police-tabloid row

lady Gaga lends star wattage to youth empowerment Sri lanka win thriller to reach finals

SPOrtS

News 03 cOmment Pakistan’s options Our options are ours to decide.

The rot within Army as an institution needs better scrutiny.

Arif Nizami says: Resetting roles: Time to clear roles of the agencies.

white lies: Last week Islamabad witnessed a mega wedding where the Supreme Court CJ’s son tied the knot with the daughter of a marriage hall proprietor. The five star hotel was packed with no less than 1500 people, some claim it was more like 2000 guests.

Story on Page 14

Story on Page 17

Story on Page 18

Articles on Page 12-13

PA votes for Senate elections LAHORE STAFF RePoT

The Punjab Assembly remained the centre of action as a large number of senior politicians visited the PA on Friday to gain support for their candidates. The politicians, including Chaudhry Pervaiz Elahi, Qamar Zaman Kaira and Raja Pervaiz Ashraf came to the assembly and talked to the media outside its building. Chaudhry Shujaat Hussain said PML-Q’s candidate Mohsin Leghari had violated the party discipline by participating in the Senate elections. “Kamil Ali Agha had been nominated as our candidate for the Senate,” he said. In reply to a question, federal minister Chaudhry Pervaiz Elahi said PML-N’s support for Leghari was an assault on PML-Q’s mandate. He added that the alliance with the PPP was going in the right direction. Aitzaz Ahsan said it was up to the people to choose the party they want to see in power. Babar Awan said the Senate elections had proved the PPPs status as the country’s biggest party. He stated that PPP’s allies had played pivotal role in the democratic process. He added that the people would be provided relief through the upcoming budget. Federal Information Minister Firdous Ashaq Awan said the government had opted for reconciliation and that the federal government had sacrificed a lot for the provinces. Punjab Chief Minister Shahbaz Sharif also talked to the media and said he never talked about ousting the government, but wanted to rid the system of the corrupt officials. The Punjab Assembly session continued for ten minutes, before it was adjourned by Punjab Assembly Speaker Rana Muhammad Iqbal till Monday evening due to the Senate elections. 368 votes were cast in total, while three members did not exercise their right to vote. MPAs Tahir Ali Javed and Babar Malik were abroad and could not vote. Dr Asad Moazam joined Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaaf and therefore did not participate in the polls. The polls took a dramatic turn when PML-N candidate Yasin Sohl was asked by Rana Sana Ullah to show his ballet paper. Sohl, who was irked by the incident, handed in his resignation.

lAHoRe: Pakistan People’s Party activists celebrate the victory of their party in the Senate election on Friday. STAFF PHoTo

US ex-senators link Saudi government to 9/11 attacks NEW YORK AFP

Relatives of people killed in the September 11, 2001 attacks on the United States Friday welcomed moves by two former senators to link Saudi Arabia to the events as part of a huge lawsuit. Ex-Florida senator Bob Graham and former Nebraska senator Bob Kerrey said in sworn affidavits to a New York court they were certain of the links between the Saudi government and the attacks. “I am convinced that there was a direct line between at least some of the terrorists who carried out the September 11th attacks and the government of Saudi Arabia,” said Graham. Graham led a joint 2002 congres-

sional inquiry into the attacks in which Al-Qaeda militants hijacked four planes and crashed them into the World Trade Center in New York, the Pentagon in Washington and a Pennsylvania field. Almost 3,000 people were killed in the worst ever attack on American soil. Kerrey, who served on a separate 9/11 inquiry, said in his own sworn statement last week that “significant questions remain unanswered about the role of Saudi institutions.” “Evidence relating to the plausible involvement of possible Saudi government agents in the September 11th attacks has never been fully pursued.” Families of the victims said Friday they welcomed the comments

“strongly disagreeing with papers filed by the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and the Saudi High Commission claiming that they had been ‘exonerated’ of any connection to the 9/11 terrorist attacks.” Saudi Arabia, now a key regional US ally in the fight against terrorism, has said the 9/11 commission’s final report “found no evidence that the Saudi government as an institution of senior Saudi individuals funded” Al-Qaeda, the New York Times said. But in a statement Thursday the group, the 9/11 Families United to Bankrupt Terrorism, “applauded” the statements by Graham and Kerrey which are part of a multi-billion dollar lawsuit before the court.

money used in Senate election, says nisar

ISLAMABAD

Gill’s loss result of PPP’s loyalty towards Pml-Q LAHORE NAumAN TASleem

The defeat of PPP candidate Aslam Gill in Senate election in Punjab was a result of miscalculation, over-expectation and PPP’s loyalty with the PML-Q, as several members did not put Gill on the second priority and that resulted in a defeat for Gill. At least six members of the PPP voted against Aslam Gill, which forced him to burst out against them. Insiders said two of the candidates could not come to vote and ditched the PPP. Kamil Ali Agha got 46 votes, Mohsin Leghari secured 46.3 and Aslam Gill managed 42 votes, falling

short of at least four votes. PPP member Babar Hussain was abroad, costing Gill one vote, while Asad Moazam, who joined the PTI, did not come to vote as well. “The PPP proved that it honours allied parties by giving ten votes to Agha,” said a senior leader of the PPP, adding that if the PPP had not voted for Agha, he would have certainly lost the election. “At least ten votes were given to Kamil Ali Agha only to please the PML-Q,” he added. He also admitted that Gill was not even put on second priority, because had it done so, Gill would have won the election. Gill was seen furious after the decision and attributed his defeat to some “traitors” within the party.

Gill’s defeat instigates scornful chants lahore: After Aslam Gill’s defeat, PPP workers demonstrated against Babar Awan and Raja Riaz Ahmed on Friday. They chanted slogans against Awan and Raja over the defeat of Aslam Gill and said that those two leaders were responsible for the defeat of a diehard worker of PPP. PPP Women Wing Lahore President Faiza Malik also came to calm down the angry protestors but no one paid any heed and the protestors tore apart the posters of Babar Awan. They also chanted slogans against Babar Awan and Rana Riaz. Early in the morning supporters of Aslam Gill gathered in front of Punjab Assembly and were chanting slogans in favour of Gill. They were expecting Gill to win the Senate seat but his loss aggrieved them and they started protests. STAFF RePoRT

INP

Opposition leader in the National Assembly Chaudhry Nisar Ali Khan on Friday said seats in the Senate elections were being “publicly auctioned”. Speaking to reporters outside the National Assembly on Friday, Nisar expressed his dismay at the use of money to influence the ongoing Senate elections, suggesting the “bad fish” not only be expelled from parliament, but also thrown out of politics completely. He said selling and buying of votes was a shameful act. “We should be choosing our leaders instead of electing merchants,” he added. The PML-N leader demanded the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) take notice of the matter. He expressed the resolve that he would raise the voice against use of money during the election in the National Assembly. “What is left when even the parliament can be purchased,” he said.


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04 News

Saturday, 3 march, 2012

Code of conduct for media after consultation: Firdous LAHORE

F

APP

E D E R A L Minister for Information and Broadcasting Dr Firdous Ashiq Awan on Friday said a code of conduct for the media would be finalised after consultation. Talking to editors of various newspapers at a local hotel, she said the media was an effective tool to serve for accountability of every segment of society, adding that how was it possible that the media itself did not follow any code of conduct. Appreciating the media for its role to strengthen democracy in the country, she said that code of conduct, made in 2002 for media, needed several improvements as there was no electronic media at that time and now the situation had

changed. She said the Pakistan People’s Party(PPP) led government had activated the Press Council and a chairman had been appointed so the issues of print media workers could be resolved, adding the chairman was directed to visit all provinces and resolve the issues of print media workers as

“cross media orientation” had crushed the workers. The minister questioned how could a democratic government solve issues in four years that took 64 years to create. She said the Senate elections were a step towards a strong democracy, as all assemblies participated in the process. Commenting on Balochistan issue, she said parliamentarians of Balochistan had strenghtened the federation by exercising their right to vote in the Senate elections against the negative propaganda by some non-political actors. Firdous said some people were raising slogans of revolution in their public meetings, but they did not participate in the by-polls which exposed their real face, adding that vote was the only way for revolution in democratic system.

Continued fRoM page 1

All ‘escape routes’

IslamaBaD: Afghan President Hamid Karzai stressed equitable and deeper collaboration between Pakistan and Afghanistan to sustain brotherly and close ties. Karzai, in a letter to Prime Minister Yousaf Raza Gilani, mentioned the Third Afghan-Iran-Pakistan Trilateral Summit in Islamabad that offered yet another opportunity to pursue bilateral dialogue between the two countries. APP

He may either fully or partially agree or deny the evidence, statement and testimony of Mansoor Ijaz,” Justice Isa told Haqqani’s lawyer, Sajid Tanoli who is assisting Zahid Bukhari in the case. Justice Isa said, “We (commission) are not powerless… If Haqqani says he didn’t remember the PIN, we have got other ways to do it. We will summon his wife and other family members, the foreign affairs secretary to know the PIN of Haqqani’s handset if he did not submit it voluntarily”. To Haqqani’s lawyer he said, “The commission did not want to trick or trap anybody and is telling you in advance.” On request of Haqqani’s counsel, the commission decided that the copies of month-specific phone bills to be provided by Haqqani would not be made public due to privacy reasons. The commission directed the government to give in

writing the ownership details of the missing Blackberry sets which were in Haqqani’s use during May 2011 to November 4, 2011 and also provide copies of the bills paid by the government of Pakistan in the US. It said if the bills were lost, the government must ask the service provider to send a PDF version of the bill directly to the commission. Haqqani had told the commission during previous hearings that his Blackberry sets were missing since he left London. He also had declined to submit PIN of the sets. Mustafa Ramday, currently present in London for Ijaz’s cross-examination, informed the commission about two forensic companies – LGC Forensics and Systems Technologies Consultants Limited – for verification and authenticity of the communication data stored in the handset of Ijaz. The commission secretary, who is already in Lon-

don, was directed to check with the forensic companies about their expertise on the issue. The commission also directed other counsels to suggest forensic companies to chose one of them for the purpose. During the cross-examination, Ijaz said he remained in contact with ISI DG Ahmad Shuja Pasha even after October 22 through emails and telephone but his security was the sole subject of the communication. Asked whether President Asif Ali Zardari had prior knowledge of the US raid in Abbottabad, Ijaz said he would not like to answer the question due to sensitivity of the matter. He said he had also informed Haqqani through his family phone number about the broader content of the intelligence transcript that he, a day earlier, had submitted before the commission. He also provided a copy of the bill of his private phone number to the commission to support his claim.

minded could not succeed in making a “political upset” as their vote bank, apparently, remained confined to their party fellows, numbering four only. In total 164 members of the provincial assembly cast their votes in the 168-member electoral college for Senate from Sindh. Dr Ghulam Arbab Rahim of the PMLLikeminded and Waheeda Shah, Rashida Akhtar Panhwar and Ruqia Khanum Soomro of the PPP did not cast their votes, as the former chief minister was abroad, while the by-poll result notification of Waheeda Shah has been withheld. Panhwar could not participate in the voting because of her mother’s demise while Soomro is sick. The Provincial Election Commission (PEC) declared five votes invalid, three for minorities and two for women seats. K h Y B e r paKhtunKhwa: Rubina Khalid of the PPP and Zahida Khan of the ANP were elected to the women’s seats, while Amarjeet Malhotra of the ANP was elected to the minorities’ seat. Ilyas Bilour of the ANP and

Farhatullah Babar of the PPP were elected to the technocrat seats. Shahi Syed and Baz Muhammad Khan and Azam Hoti of the ANP have been elected to the general seats, while Talha Mahmood of the JUI-F was also elected. Saifullah Bangash, Ahmed Hasan Khan, Shamroz Khan Jadoon from the PPP were also elected. Nisar Muhammad Khan of the PML-N also won a Senate seat from the province. punJaB: In Punjab, the PML-N overshadowed its rivals – the PPP and PML-Q – as its seven candidates were elected to the total 12 seats from the province. Moreover, the PML-N was successful in giving the PPP a jolt, as Aslam Gill of the PPP was defeated by Mohsin Leghari of the PML-Q, an independent candidate being covertly supported by the PML-N. Gill bagged 42 votes while Leghari, whose performance had been exceptional against the PML-N as a vocal opposition legislator, bagged 46 votes. PML-N leaders Sardar Zulfiqar Khosa, Rafique Rijwana, Zafarullah Dhandla

and Muhammad Hamza were elected besides PPP candidate Babar Awan. Kamil Ali Agha of the PMLQ was also elected. PML-N MNA Nuzhat Sadiq and PPP nominee Khalida Parveen were elected on reserved seats for women. On the technocrat seats, Aitzaz Ahsan from the PPP and Ishaq Dar of the PML-N were already elected unopposed. On the minority seat, Kamran Michael of the PML-N got elected unopposed. During the polling, PML-N MPA Yasin Sohail tendered his resignation in protest against the insistence of Punjab Law Minister Rana Sanaullah, who reportedly asked him to show his vote before casting. However, after intervention by the chief minister, Sohail withdrew his resignation. Talking to reporters, Sohail said Sanaullah asked him to show his vote in order to check if he was following party policy. He said he had submitted his resignation to Chief Minister’s Principal Secretary Tauqeer Shah. Later, Rana Sanaullah persuaded him to withdraw

his resignation. The Punjab law minister said Sohail had submitted his resignation to him and not to the Punjab Assembly speaker after getting a little emotional. BaloChIstan: In Balochistan, Saifullah Magsi and Sardar Fateh Mohammad Mohammad Hasni of the PPP, Hafiz Hamdullah of the JUI-F, Saeedul Hassan Mandokhel of the PML-Q, Mir Israrullah Zehri of the BNP-Awami made it to the Senate. Interestingly, Daud Khan of the ANP also won election despite the ANP having only three MPAs in the Balochistan Assembly and where it needed at least nine votes to win a seat to the Senate. Those elected to the general Senate seats in Balochistan include Mir Israrullah Zehri of BNPAwami, Nawabzada Saifullah Magsi, Muhammad Yousuf Baloch and Sardar Fateh Muhammad Hasni of the PPP. Rozi Khan Kakar was also successful. Syedul Hassan Mandokhel and Rubina Irfan of the PML-Q, besides Hamdullah Saboor and Mufti Abdul Sattar Shahwani of

Karzai for deeper Pak-Afghan collaboration

Think again You know, this is something that we don’t think is a good idea. And the secretary made that absolutely clear,” State Department spokesperson Victoria Nuland told reporters when asked about the exchange of statements between the leaders of the two countries Thursday. “We would also note that, you know, Iran is making all kinds of offers to all kinds of countries, and they often don’t live up to their promises. And we know that Pakistan has energy needs, and we are working with Pakistan on those energy needs. And we would just encour-

ATToCK: Three American citizens Jonathan, daniel Rayan and James Richard and two Pakistani women, Saba and Sameera, sit in police custody on Friday. online

age them to think twice about aligning themselves with an unreliable partner,” Nuland said. Echoing Clinton, the US official said that given the international sanctions against Iran, Pakistan would face the burnt of it, if it decided to go ahead with the Iran-Pakistan gas pipeline project. “You know that we have a variety of sanctions on the books that we would not want to see kick in, in this instance, which is, you know, among the reasons why we think this is a bad idea and hope it doesn’t go forward,” Nuland said in response to a question.

Continued fRoM page 1

Attorney General Maulvi Anwarul Haq and Haqqani’s lawyer Sajid Tanoli continued to object throughout the proceedings over the evidence provided by Ijaz, saying the witness could not exhibit further evidence during the cross-examination. Ijaz said shortly after Haqqani resigned as ambassador to the US, he was informed by some senior intelligence official, not from Pakistan, that there would be an attempt to delete data from his handset. To a question, Ijaz said he contacted a US government agency for verification of the integrity of software in his handset but the agency refused to do so under the pressure of the US government. The commission will meet again on March 15 when Haqqani’s counsel Zahid Bukhari will start cross-examining Ijaz. Justice Isa made it clear to Bukhari’s associate that Bukhari must be present on March 15, adding that no adjournment requests would be entertained.

the JUI-F also got elected. Naseema Ehsan of the BNP-Awami remained successful on the women seat from Balochistan, while the minority seat was won by Aman Das of the JUI-F. results wIthhelD: Late on Friday night, the Balochistan Election Commission withheld the results for seven general Senate seats after objections were filed by losing PML-N candidate Syed Nawab Shah. A recount would be held in Islamabad by the ECP, it was announced. Balochistan Election Commissioner Abdul Jabbar Jamali confirmed that a recount of votes for all seven general seats from Balochistan would be held in Islamabad. He said there were some objections raised by the PMLN nominee over the rejection of the vote cast by Sardar Sanaullah Zehri and against the announcement by provincial election commission that declared ANP’s nominee Daud Achkazai elected. He said the official result of all the seven general seats would be announced on March 5, after recounting in the presence of both candidates.

PPP and allies sweep Continued fRoM page 1 reflected good homework, while the upset in Punjab, where the PML-N covertly backed Mohsin Leghari, gives an impression that there was some backchannel used between the Khosas and Legharis – the archrival groups – to defeat PPP’s Aslam Gill. JuI-F: The JUI-F won four seats. Previously, the party had 10 senators, but seven of its members were to retire on March 12, reducing the party’s strength to three. With the four wins, the total strength of the party would rise to seven. InDepenDents: Four independents made it to the Senate from FATA and they are supporting the government. However, there is no word yet from Mohsin Leghari, who won as an independent candidate from Punjab. FeDeral CapItal: From the federal capital, Mushahid Hussain of the PML-Q was elected unopposed on the technocrat seat, while Usman Saifullah from the PPP was elected to the general seat. Fata: Hidayatullah, Najamul Hassan and Saleh Shah

won elections with clear majority from FATA. However, since Akhundzada Chattan and Maulana Abdul Malik did not cast their votes, Hilalur Rehman, Abdul Waheed Khan, Hameedullah Jan Afridi and Abdul Malik Qadri entered into a tie as all four got four votes each. Finally, Hilalur Rehman was elected after a draw. Sahibzada Abdus Salam Shirani and Malik Abdur Rehman could not get any vote while Munir Aurakzai got one vote. sInDh: In Sindh, Nasreen Jalil, Mustafa Kamal and Tahir Mashhadi from the MQM and Seher Kamran from the PPP were elected to the women Senate seats. Hari Ram Kishori Lal was elected to the minority Senate seat. While from the PPP, Mian Raza Rabbani, Saeed Ghani, Aijaz Dhamra and Dr Karim Khawaja remained successful. Muzzafar Hussain Shah from the PML-F was also elected to the Senate. Dr Abdul Hafeez Sheikh and Barrister Farogh Naseem have already been elected unopposed on the technocrat seats in Sindh. As expected, all three candidates of the PML-Like-


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Saturday, 3 march, 2012

Circular debt issue resolved, says PM ISLAMABAD

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GNI

RIME Minister Yousaf Raza Gilani on Friday said the government had addressed the circular debt issue to a large extent and the resolution would lead to maximum thermal generation of electricity and a considerable improvement the supply. The prime minister said this while chairing a meeting regarding the access to European markets that was attended by Minister for Commerce Makhdoom Amin Fahim, Adviser on Finance Dr Abudl Hafeez Shaikh, senior officials of the ministries of commerce, textiles, foreign affairs and representatives of private sector. The commerce secretary informed the meeting that the WTO had approved European Package of 75 items on February14. He said after the ap-

proval of the EU parliament these items would be exported to European Markets without any duty from January 1, 2013. The secretary said over and above impact on Pakistan’s export would be around $450 million to the European Union. He further said in the GSP Plus, the European Union changed criteria to the advantage of Pakistan that could be attributed to the hectic efforts of the government’s functionaries under the guidance of the prime minister. It was decided in the meeting that the prime minister would preside over the meeting of Envoy’s Conference belonging to European Union during his forthcoming visit to UK to appreciate the support of EU. The secretary also informed the meeting that EFTA, countries out of European Union, like Iceland, Norway, Lichtenstein, Monaco and Switzerland, had also indicated their willingness to

initiate dialogue on the trade agreement with Pakistan. The dialogue is expected to be held in April this year and if concluded it will further boost Pakistan’s exports in these countries, the secretary maintained. Representatives of the private sector called upon the government to take immediate action for the uninterrupted supply of energy to the export industry in order to fully capitalise the expected tariff concessions from the EU and EFTA countries. The prime minister said he had already held a meeting with the representatives of APTMA today who suggested some out of box solutions to overcome energy shortage in the country. He said that the UK secretary of state for international development, Andrew Mitchell, had also appreciated the normalisation of trade links between Pakistan and India.

SC issues notices on plea against lawmakers with dual nationality ISLAMABAD STAFF RePoRT

A three-member Supreme Court (SC) bench on Friday accepted for regular hearing a petition seeking disqualification of the parliamentarians holding dual nationality, and issued notices to respondents as well as the attorney general. The bench, comprising Chief Justice Iftikhar Muhammad Chaudhry, Justice Khilji Arif Hussain and Justice Tariq Parvez, directed respondents to furnish their reply by March 12. The petition was filed by United Human Rights Commission Vice Chairman Mahmood Akhtar under Article 184(3) of the constitution, making the federation and all provincial governments and the Election Commission of Pakistan

(ECP) respondents. The petitioner requested the court to direct the ECP to obtain complete record of parliamentarians who held dual nationality. He further pleaded the court to disqualify such parliamentarians and restrain them from contesting the next general elections. The petitioner contended that overseas Pakistanis could not become members of the parliament under Article 62 of the constitution. Likewise, he stated that according to Section 14 of the Pakistan Citizen Act, 1951, “If anyone was holding another country’s nationality, his nationality in Pakistan will be suspended.” The petition stated that according to media reports more than 35 legislators were holding dual nationals in violation of the constitution, which bars such individuals to become members of the assemblies.

Ib inspector shot dead while taking son to school peshawar: Intelligence Bureau (IB) Inspector Bashir Khan was killed and his son was injured on Friday when unidentified attackers shot at them on Warsak Road. Sources said Bashir was going to drop his son at school when armed motorcyclists fired multiple bullets at him, injuring him and his minor son, Aimal Khan. Both were taken to Lady Reading Hospital in Peshawar, but the father succumbed to his injuries. Bashir was in charge of the IB’s control room, and regarded as a very committed member of the IB staff. In December last year, IB assistant director Sirajuddin had been killed by unidentified persons when he was going home in the jurisdiction of Yakatoot Police Station. STAFF RePoRT

Shahzain calls on nawaz to discuss Balochistan issue

LAHORE oNlINe

The leader of Jamhoori Watan Party (JWP), Shahzain Bugti met Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) President Nawaz Sharif in Raiwand on Friday. According to a handout, both leaders discussed the current situation in Balochistan. The meeting comes at a time when the PPP-led government wants a solution to

the Balochistan issue and trying to call an all-parties conference to form a consensus. Earlier last week, Bugti visited Jamia Naeemia where he said Pakistan’s intelligence agencies and not India were to blame for the killings and kidnappings in the province. He had said the government should bring forward proof against the Indian connection before “reiterating India’s involvement again and again like a parrot”.

News 05

‘osama’ filming in india disrupted by VHP activists CHANDIGARH INP

The shooting of Kathryn Bigelow’s film on Osama bin Laden that would depict the killing of the former al Qaeda leader in Abbottabad was stalled on Friday by activists of Vishwa Hindu Parishad (VHP), who objected to hoisting of Pakistani flags. The crew was forced to cancel the shoot and move the cameras away after protests in Manimajra town on the outskirts of the city. VHP activists led by Vijay Singh Bhardwaj forcefully disrupted the shooting and removed the sign boards put in Urdu on a few shops, a crew members said, adding that the cameramen were also allegedly pushed and abused. They raised slogans against Pakistan and removed its flags put in place to recreate the actual spot in Abbottabad where US commandos killed the dreaded al Qaeda leader in a helicopter raid on May 2, 2011. “They (the movie crew) are showing Chandigarh as Pakistan, this is not acceptable in any terms. Why should any place in India be converted to look like Pakistan? We will never allow Pakistan’s flags flying at places in the city where the shooting is taking place,” Bhardwaj said. After the melee, the VHP activists went to police to register a formal complaint against the film’s director.

Bigelow later said no Pakistani flag will be put in place at the shooting areas. Station House Officer (SHO) Rajesh Shukla assured VHP activists that Pakistani flags will not be permitted at the shooting locales after which they dispersed. No case has been registered, he said. “Our objection is to hoisting of Pakistani flags,” Bhardwaj said. The film’s crew has been shooting in prominent markets at the Punjab Engineering College and at Patiala with shop boards in Urdu, auto-rickshaws with Lahore number plates, burqa-clad women and men in salwar-kameez, chappals and skullcaps. The title of the film is being kept as a closely guarded secret but for now it is being talked about as ‘Zero Dark 30’.


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06 News

Saturday, 3 march, 2012

Reduce dependence on Pakistan, thinktank asks Obama WASHINGTON

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L A I M I N G that the US and Pakistan have opposing goals for Afghanistan, an American expert on South Asia has asked President Barack Obama to look beyond Islamabad and towards other like-minded partners in the region to stem terrorism and help stabilise the war-torn nation. “Unless Pakistan demonstrates a willingness to actively squeeze Taliban insurgents on its soil and use its leverage to bring them to compromise with the US and Afghan authorities, the US should consider alternative policy options to stem terrorism in the region,” Lisa Curtis of the Heritage Foundation, said. In her latest article, Curtis said the US and NATO partners can look beyond Pakistan and toward other like-minded partners in the region to help stabilise Afghanistan. “While it is in America’s interest to encourage stability in Pakistan, it is also vital to US national security that international terrorists are rooted out of both Afghanistan and Pakistan,” she said. “Washington and Islamabad have opposing goals for Afghanistan that can no longer be brushed under the carpet,” Curtis

said adding that Pakistani officials often claim to their US counterparts that they lack capacity to take on terrorist sanctuaries within their borders, but these claims are questionable and need to be tested. The Obama administration, she said, has sought to include Pakistan in its efforts to reconcile with the Taliban, even though Pakistan continues to serve as a sanctuary for Taliban and Haqqani network militants fighting coalition forces in Afghanistan. “Islamabad views the sanctuaries as a bargaining chip to force its way into the negotiations process. Washington needs to make clear that Islamabad’s role in the talks depends on its willingness to use its leverage with Taliban insurgents to bring them to compromise,” she said. Curtis said the US should also communicate that while it is open to engaging the Taliban, it is not desperate to do so and has other options it can pursue. “Political reconciliation is desirable but only if it contributes to the goal of ensuring that Afghanistan never again serves as a safe haven for global terrorists,” she said. “But if Pakistan is unwilling to use its leverage to help bring genuine peace to Afghanistan, there are other policies – aside from pursuing reconciliation with the Taliban – that the US can pursue,” she added.

Army begins transferring administrative powers to Swat civil administration SWAT HARooN SIRAJ

The Pakistan Army began transferring the administrative powers to the Swat civil administration and the security responsibilities to the police on Saturday. In its first stage, the army handed over the administrative and security powers of Bahrain to the relevant local authorities. The decision was announced on February 2 by GOC, Ghulam Qamar during a meeting. He expressed satisfaction over the current peace and security situation in Swat. Adding, he said times were ripe for the civil administration and the police to assume the overall responsibilities of the district. The formal power shifting process started in Bahrain tehsil on March 1. According to the official sources, the security responsibilities of Kalam, Madyan and all other areas of Tehsil Bahrian were handed over to the police before the army receded to

their units. Swat DCO Kamran Rahman confirmed the army’s move of the power shifting process. “The police, now being capable of coping with the security situations, have already replaced the army personnel at security check posts in Bahrain,” DSP Bahrain, Naveed Khan confirmed. ptI FormallY InvItes ameer muqam to JoIn partY: The PTI sent a jirga of party stalwarts to formally invite Ameer Muqam to join Pakistan’s fast-growing political party. The jirga, consisting of Prof Sher Afgan Khan Kaka, PTI divisional organiser, Jamal Nasar Khan, former district nazim, Fazal Hakeem, PTI district general secretary, and some 200 party members arrived at the residence of Ameer Muqam at Sangota where they formally invited him and his party workers to join the PTI. “Ameer Muqam being a conscientious leader and his constitution knowing no compromise, the PTI is most eager seek the support of such leaders.

PeSHAwAR: Rescue personnel inspect the site after a gas cylinder blast at a local hospital on Friday. STAFF PHoTo

PO killed in Afghan clerics demand public encounter with trial Quran burners Daska police SIALKOT STAFF RePoRT

A proclaimed offender, Jameel alias Jeela, was killed in an encounter with Daska police near Jessarwala village late on Thursday. Sialkot District Police Officer (DPO) Syed Ali Mohsin told newsmen that the Daska City Police was taking Jameel to Sialkot for identification of some looted valuables late last night when five armed motorcyclists, including an accused Haseeb alias Haseeba, attacked the police party near Jessarwala and got Jamil freed and fled. The fleeing accused took shelter in nearby fields and opened fire on the chasing policemen. The police retaliated and managed to kill Jameel, while his accomplices managed to escape. The DPO said the deceased was the leader of his well-organised Jeela Gang. He said the accused was wanted by Sialkot, Daska, Motra, Kotwali, Hajipura, Civil Line and Uggoki police in as many as 50 cases of dacoity, robbery and other heinous crimes. Daska police handed over the body to the family in Fatehgarh tehsil of Sialkot.

KABUL AFP

Afghanistan’s top religious council on Friday demanded that those responsible for the burning of copies of holy Quran at a US military base should be put on public trial, a statement from the president’s office said. The Ulema Council “insists that such a devilish act is not forgivable by apologies, and that the perpetrators of this crime should soon be publicly tried and punished”, the statement said. “The council strongly condemns the heinous, inhumane, barbaric act of disrespecting the Koran and other religious

books by American forces in Bagram base.” The council is funded by the government and issued the statement after a meeting with President Hamid Karzai. The council reiterated the president’s calls for the handover of the USrun prison at Bagram to Afghan control and an end to night raids, saying “the foreigners have so far not positively responded to these righteous demands”. The Qurans sent to an incinerator pit at the Bagram base north of Kabul had reportedly been seized from prisoners — in what is known as Afghanistan’s Guantanamo Bay — who were suspected of using them to pass messages.


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Saturday, 3 march, 2012

Geyser blast creates panic in G/6 ISLAMABAD STAFF RePoRT

A powerful boiler explosion on Friday partially jolted a sub sector of Sector G/6, but no injuries were reported. The geyser blast occurred in House No 10 in Sector G/6/3. The echo of the blast was heard in all the sub-sector of G/6, creating panic among the locals. A heavy contingent of Islamabad police and a bomb disposal squad rushed to the scene. The blast caused a heavy damage to the house. The furniture lying in the house was greatly damaged and its windowpanes broke. Inspector General of Islamabad Police Bani Amin and other senior police officials rushed to the scene. Talking to reporters at the blast site, he the IGP said that it was not a bomb; rather it was a geyser blast.

IHc cJ constitutes nine benches for next week ISLAMABAD APP

Islamabad High Court (IHC) Chief Justice has constituted six single benches and three division benches to hear a number of cases for next week starting from March 5. Six single benches include Chief Justice Iqbal Hameed-Ur-Rehman, Justice Riaz Ahmed Khan, Justice Muhammad Anwar Khan Kasi ,Justice Noorul Haq N Qureshi, Justice Shaukat Aziz Sidqui and Justice Muhammad Azim Khan Afridi. The first division bench (DB) comprises of Chief Justice Iqbal Hameed-Ur-Rehman and Justice Noorul Haq N Qureshi, second bench Justice Riaz Ahmed Khan, Justice Muhammad Azim Khan Afridi while the third bench includes Justice Muhammad Anwar Khan Kasi and Justice Shaukat Aziz Sidqui. All the benches will resume hearing over 300 cases during the next week.

Five injured in firing over land dispute ISLAMABAD STAFF RePoRT

As many as five people, including two women, were injured in firing at Bhara Hahu, a suburb of the federal capital, over a land dispute on Friday. According to the police, Mumtaz Khan son of Lal Khan had developed a land dispute with Tanveer Khan. On the day of the incident, they opened fired on each other with sophisticated weapons in Dhoke Choan, leaving five persons wounded. Those injured included Mumtaz Khan, his brother Altaf Khan, Nabila Bibi and Muhammad Altaf. They were shifted to Poly Clinic. Bhara Kahu police have registered a case and started investigation.

ISLAMABAD oNlINe

Older women who eat high amount of the kind of fat found in fried foods and baked goods face a greater risk of stroke than women who eat lower fat diets, a US study suggests. However, aspirin use could cut those risks, said the researchers from University of North Carolina whose findings are published in the Annals of Neurology. The data came from the largest study to date of post-menopausal women and their eating habits, and included 87,025 women between the ages 50 and 79 who

ISlAmAbAd: Shops at melody Food Park seen closed due to strike against Assistant Commissioner muhammad Ali on Friday. online

CDA, govt reluctant to name road after Shahbaz Bhatti g

christians announce protest to press civic body to name the road after slain minority minister ISLAMABAD

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STAFF RePoRT

EAR of extremism and resentment by some religious circles has not allowed the Capital Development Authority (CDA) to name the road and street of Sector I/8 after former minority minister Shahbaz Bhatti. However, the Christian community on Friday announced to protest to press the civic body to name the road after Shahbaz Bhatti. While addressing the gathering, All Pakistan Minority Alliance (APMA) Deputy Convener Javed Bachan said the rally had been organised in connection with death anniversary of Shahbaz Bhatti. It was a longstanding demand of the Christian community to name the road, street and a park after Bhatti in sector I/8, he said, adding it was beyond thinking that why the authorities concerned were reluctant in fulfilling their demand. He said Shahbaz Bhatti sacrificed his life just to defend rights of innocent people and he (Shahbaz) was also a member of federal government but it was regrettable that the government had not taken any step to remember his sacrifices. “Neither the government has arrested the killers of Shahbaz nor has they made his re-

membrance at any place,” he said. Last year on March 2, some unidentified gunmen shot at and killed minister for religious minorities Shahbaz Bhatti when he was on his way to work in Islamabad. The reason behind his death was his opposition to the blasphemy law. The issue to name the road and street of sector I/8 after Bahtti was discussed in the CDA board meeting couple of days ago. CDA Spokesman Ramzan Sajid had told Pakistan Today that naming any road or street after someone was not in the domain of civic body and the government had to give its recommendation in this regard. Sources told there was no hurdle in the said process but the only thing

which did not allow the CDA and the government to move ahead with the issue of naming road in Sector was fear of strong resentment, most probably from those forces which were behind the killing of former minister. They said that many a Muslim leaders belonging to different sects were also murdered in the capital city but no road or place was name after them so it might be difficult for the government to name the road after Bhatti. It is pertinent to mention here that death anniversary of Shahbaz Bhatti was observed on Friday and the rally was also organised by the Christian community and civil society in this regard. A large number of people belonging to the Christian community gathered near the place where Bhatti was murdered last year. They staged a protest rally from the residence of Bhatti and moved towards the place of his assassination. The protestors chanted slogans against the government for its failure to apprehend the killers of Shahbaz Bhatti. A separate vigil was also staged by the civil society here in front of Super Market in which a large number of human rights activists including Tahira Abdulah, Rehana Hashmi and Farzana Bari participated.

Fried food raises stroke risk in older women were generally in good health at the time of enrollment. Women who reported eating diets high in trans-fatty acids, or 6.1 grams a day, showed a 39 percent greater incidence of stroke due to a blocked artery than women who ate 2.2 grams per day of such fats. The researchers did not find any significant links between stroke risk and how much total fat the women consumed, or their level of dietary cholesterol. But aspirin use was shown to slim

down the link between trans fat intake and stroke, which affects nearly 800,000 people in the United States per year and is the fourth leading cause of US death. “Our findings confirm that postmenopausal women with higher trans fat intake had an elevated risk of ischemic stroke, but aspirin use may reduce the adverse effects,” said lead author Ka He of the UNC School of Public Health. “We recommend following a diet low in trans fat and adding an aspirin regi-

men to help women reduce their risk of stroke, specifically following the onset of menopause.” Trans fat is on the decline in the United States due to a public health and legislation campaign which has banned its use in many fast food restaurants and in food preparation. “Trans fats are rare in living nature, but can commonly occur in foods as a result of food processing called partial hydrogenation when a liquid vegetable oil is

Parkinson’s drug may help treat brain injuries: report ISLAMABAD oNlINe

Daily doses of a drug used to treat Parkinson’s disease significantly improved function in brain-injured people thought to be beyond treatment, scientists have reported, providing the first rigorous evidence to date that any therapy reliably helps such patients. The improvements were modest, experts said, and hardly amounted to a cure, or a quick means of “waking up” someone who has long been unresponsive. But the progress was meaningful, experts said, and, if replicated, would give rehabilitation doctors something they have never had: a standard treatment for injuries that are not at all standard or predictable in the ways they affect the brain. Some 50,000 to 100,000 Americans live in states of partial consciousness, and perhaps 15,000 in an unresponsive “vegetative” condition. According to the Department of Defense, more than 6,000 veterans have had severe brain injuries since 2000 and would potentially benefit from this therapy. The new report, appearing in The New England Journal of Medicine, gives doctors a solid basis to address such injuries, if not yet a predictable outcome. “This study puts the traumatic brain injury field on the first step of the ladder to developing scientific treatments. We’ve been trying to get there for a long time,” said Dr. Ramon Diaz-Arrastia, director of clinical research at the Center for Neuroscience and Regenerative Medicine at the Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences in Rockville, Md., who was not involved in the research. turned into a solid fat,” said Nancy Copperman, director of public health initiatives at North Shore-Long Island Jewish Health System in New York. Copperman, who was not involved in the study, added that the behaviors of women who ate lots of trans fat were also unhealthy, including decreased physical activity, smoking, and higher levels of diabetes. “Encouraging and supporting women consume a balanced diet avoiding trans fat and including healthy oils and daily physical activity can be a major step in preventing stroke and other lifestyle related diseases,” she said.


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08 Islamabad

Saturday, 3 march, 2012

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ISlAmAbAD: ISO activists protest against the killing of Shias in Kohistan. STAFF PHoTo

President approves Shifa Tameer-e-Millat University Act ISLAMABAD

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APP

RESIDENT Asif Ali Zardari Friday accorded assent to Shifa Tameer-eMillat University Act which pertains to establishment of the university in health and other sciences. The bill for the university was passed by the National Assembly on January 16 and by the Senate on February 10. The Islamabad-based university is envisaged to be a non-profit institution set up in the private sector. The chancellor of the university would be elected by the Chancellor Election Council from amongst its members comprising all members of the board of governors of the Shifa Foundation and Tameer-e-Millat Foundation. The president, while giving assent to the act, expressed the hope that the university would also focus on teachers’ training programs and their capacity building. He said in view of the critical role of teachers in building human capital, there was a dire need to focus on teachers’ training. IrI to CeleBrate FounDatIon DaY on 10th: Islamic Research Institute of International Islamic University (IIU) will celebrate its 52nd Foundation Day on March 10. It was decided at a meeting of academicians and administrative officers of the institute, which was presided over by Director General Dr Khalid Masud. Speaking on the occasion, Dr Masud said that the institute had rendered tremendous services for Islamic teachings and knowledge during the last 52 years. He said IRI was established to guide legislators and policy makers in Islamisation

process of laws and society. The Institute has published hundreds of leading books on Islamrelated topics in various languages. Dr Khalid Masud said the leading scholars, including former heads of the institute, were invited to speak on the foundation day to spread awareness about the institute among the general public. An exhibition of IRI books will also be part of the foundation day ceremony. ChIlDhooD DepressIon Creates phYsICal proBlems: Children who experience abuse or other adversities and develop mental health disorders are at greater risk of chronic physical problems when they are adults. Child maltreatment has been associated with increased risk of adverse physical health outcomes. In a prior research that examined the influence of early psychosocial environment on later physical health, the potentially biasing presence of current mental disorders has generally been ignored, BBC reported. Researchers from Melbourne University, Australia examined data from people in 10 countries included in the World Health Organisation World Mental Health Surveys initiative. The team looked at anxiety disorders and depression in children and at the following childhood adversities: abuse, neglect, loss of parents through death or other causes, divorce, parental substance abuse, parental criminal behavior, family violence and being poor. Both anxiety and depression in childhood were associated with three chronic pain conditions in adulthood: osteoarthritis, chronic spinal pain (back or neck), and frequent or severe headache.

PAinTinG ExHibiTion

Physical abuse in childhood was associated with a number of chronic diseases in adulthood: heart disease, asthma, diabetes, osteoarthritis, chronic spinal pain and headache, it was found. The greater the number of childhood adversities, the higher the risk of physical health problems in adulthood. These results are consistent with the hypothesis that childhood adversities and early-onset mental disorders have independent, broad-spectrum effects that increase the risk of diverse chronic physical conditions in later life. pmI to holD traInIng Course From 5th: Pakistan Manpower Institute (PMI) would hold a training course on” Training and developing human resources” here from March 5 to 9. Talking to APP here on Friday, the official source from PMI said that the main objective of the course is to acquaint the participants with the tools and techniques of socializing, orienting and developing employees. The participants will be exposed to a process of helping employees to adopt their new organization, their responsibilities and learn the organization’s culture, he added. In addition to this, the course would also deal with the employees training and development methods, so that the participants may be able to groom employees through training and development programmes in their respective organizations, he informed. Director General PMI, Muhammad Azam will inaugurate the event in the premises of the organization and around 30 executive officers from the public and private sector would participate in the course.

monSTEr TrUCk in iSlmAbAD

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DAte: Feb 24 - mAr 03, 2012 Venue: tAnzArA Art GAllery, ISlAmAbAD

DAte: mAr 20 - APr 21, 2012 Venue: F-9 PArK, ISlAmAbAD

tanzara Gallery takes pleasure in presenting the work of internationally acclaimed artist Jamal Ahmed. long established as one of bangladesh’s leading painters, he is in a class of artists now recognized worldwide. extensively exhibited in bangladesh and abroad, Jamal’s work has a distinct flair which sets him apart from the work of his contemporaries.

monster truck in Islamabad

DAte AnD tIme: 05:00 Pm, weeKly eVent Venue: tHe centre FOr ArtS AnD culture Our drumming circle is a (free!) ongoing event and is held every Friday from 5 to 6 p.m. we are having a great time, and want to share the good time with you! Our drumming circle has children ...


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Saturday, 3 march, 2012

Islamabad 09 Female drug smugglers held; 14kg hashish seized ISLAMABAD KASHIF AbbASI

Tarnol police on Friday arrested female drug smugglers and recovered 14kg hashish from them during checking at Shaheenabad, a police spokesman said. According to details, a police team, headed by the Tarnol SHO and SI Ghulam Shabbir stopped two women and a man, coming from Peshawar, to search their luggage near Shaheenabad. The police team recovered a pistol along with rounds and 14kg hashish from a man and two women, identified as Hamid Ali, Nazish and Maryam. Investigation is underway.

Solo show by Jamal Ahmed concludes ISLAMABAD APP

ISlAmAbAD: Folk artists perform during the baloch cultural show at lok Virsa. STAFF PHoTo

rawalpindi board makes arrangements for SSc exams RAWALPINDI oNlINe

The Rawalpindi Board has made a foolproof plan for the Secondary School Certificate (SSC) exams starting across Punjab on Saturday. The inspections teams have been appointed to monitor the examination centers to check cheating and any other illegal methods. The section 144 has also been imposed so that the irrelevant persons should not reach the examination centers. The board has also put up a ban on gadgets, mobiles calculators so that the cheating could be avoided. Chairman education board said that more than 17 lac students are taking examination while more than 344 examination centers have been established in which the examinations will be conducted. There would be up to 146 deputy superintendents and the staff of 300 examiners has also been appointed. All of the eight Secondary Boards, Board of Intermediate and Secondary Education (BISE) Lahore, Dera Ghazi Khan, Bahawalpur, Faisalabad, Rawalpindi, Gujranwala and Sargodha along with Board of Intermediate and Secondary Education Multan will hold the Matric examinations. Roll number slips have already been issued to all regular and private candidates, all the eight boards said.

Preston university holds mehfil-e-milad ISLAMABAD APP

Preston University on Friday organised a Mehfil-e-Milad to commemorate the birth anniversary of Holy Prophet Muhammad (PBUH). A huge congregation of students, faculty members and staff of the university gathered at the university auditorium to celebrate the birth anniversary of the Holy Prophet (PBUH), said a press release issued here. On the occasion, scholars highlighted life and teachings of the Holy Prophet (PBUH). They also emphasised that following the teachings of the Holy Prophet (PBUH) was need of the hour. They said we could overcome all the predicaments that confront us by steadfastly following the teachings of the Holy Quran and the Holy Prophet (PBUH).

Incorrect roll number slips irk matriculation candidates RAWALPINDI

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EVERAL students of Matriculation expressed grave concern over issuance of roll number slips full of errors by the Board of Intermediate and Secondary Education, Rawalpindi. Only 24 hours have left in commencement of the examination but we still stand deprived of roll number slips, said a group of candidates. “My son has been issued roll number slip pasted with the photograph of some other student. How can he sit in the examination starting from Saturday?, asked Muhammad Akmal, father of a student. “My subjects in which I want to appear have not been recorded correct in my roll number slip, said a student. “My name and father’s name has been recorded incorrect in my roll number slip, said another candidate. Candidates and their parents demanded that error free roll number slips be issued saying that if they fail due to the incorrect roll number slips the entire responsibility will rest with the board administration and they will approach the court of law on this count. CItIzens DemanD CleanlIness at Bara marKet: Citizens protested against lack of cleanliness arrangements particularly non-availability of latrine facility in the crowded and oldest historical Bara market at Liaqat Road. The market was set up in 1974 but its problems are still in tact and no step has been taken to address the woes of citizens. “We are paying about 120 million rupees tax annually to the government but the market lacks all civic facilities, said a group of traders. “Encroachments are galore; live electricity cables are found hanging every where and even drinking water is not available what to speak of cleanliness arrangements, said Muhammad Ali a trader. “Thing like latrine is nowhere built in this thickly crowned market. Male can use any place to ease them but where we should go when the need arises, said female visitors. The citizens demanded immediate construction of latrines separately for men and women in the market. munICIpal aDmInIstratIon to BuIlD servICe roaD: The municipal administration has decided to reconstruct a service road from Faizabad to Shams Abad. The step has been taken in connection with rehabilitation of this road besides freeing it from illegal occupants. TMA Rawal town will spend about 9 million rupees to complete the project of reconstruction of the service road on the left side of Faizabad to Shams Abad. Footpaths built alongside

service road would also be made workable during the course of reconstruction. The service road is no where seen in this areas being encroached up by the traders, furniture shops and plazas owners. Show rooms owners park their vehicles on this road and create problems for not only pedestrians but also for the vehicular traffic. 35 stuDents hospItalIseD Due to FooD poIsonIng: As many as 35 students of Benzir Nursing College were taken to hospital after having substandard food, officials said on Friday. Medical officer Dr Aisf Qadir told media that the students were in stable condition. According to officials the students had their meal at a function held in the college last night that caused medical disorder. They were shifted to a local hospital for treatment. Most of the students hailed from Lahore. resIDents protest agaInst laCK oF eleCtrICItY poles: Residents of D and E Blocks and Commercial Market have protested against lack of electricity poles in Satellite Town’s streets. They said that electric cables were hanging at low level around every house causing potential threat of electric shock and concerned authorities failed to erect new electric poles in the area. They said that incident of short-circuiting occurred daily due to the hanging wires. Residents have appealed the government to install electric poles in the area to avoid any untoward incident. revenue Department starts one-wInDow operatIon: The Revenue Department Rawalpindi has started one-window operation to address to public grievances. DCO Rawalpindi, Saqib Zafar had directed the Revenue Department to facilitate the people with one-window operation. According to the operation, residents will now submit applications for registration, sale, purchase and transfer in the office of Assistant Commissioner. According the Revenue Department, the ‘patwaris’ receive thousands of rupees bribe to issue relevant documents. raIlwaY launChes operatIon agaInst enCroaChments” Pakistan Railway Rawalpindi division has launched operation against its encroachers who have occupied railway land. The operation was launched from Mareer Bridge to Gawal Mandi and all the area was cleared from the encroachers. The administration also demolished the illegal construction on the Railway land and took the area back into their control. The Railway department said that the encroachers occupied the land for long time and it was inevitable for the department to take strong operation against them as they were also doing illegal construction on the government land.

The solo exhibition on contemporary art with impressionistic style paintings by renowned artist Jamal Ahmed will conclude here today at Tanzara art gallery. The artist is internationally recognised for his innovative skills of portraying various themes in contemporary art form. Jamal extensively exhibited his work at Bangladesh and abroad, and established himself as one of Bangladesh’s leading painters. He approaches the subjects with great empathy and passion and immortalises them in his impressionistic style paintings. He paints with great skill and dexterity, said Noshi Qadir curator of the gallery. His artistic development during the last few decades completely transcends other Bangladeshi artists with his verve or paints with the unique human warmth he portrays. Jamal’s outlook is adventurous as he is a master of many techniques of drawing and painting that includes human figure, bearded Fakirs, magnificent riverscapes and a cluster of pigeons that not only portray natural beauty but also highlight cultural heritage.


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10 Islamabad

Saturday, 3 march, 2012

roots students win awards at car art contest ISLAMABAD STAFF RePoRT

The Roots students participated in the Toyota dream car art contest in January 2012 wherein young dreamers received awards here in the city on Friday. The competition was organised in three categories - under 10 years old, 10-12 years old and 13-15 years old. The goal of Toyota dream car art contest is to create opportunities for children to feel fun and understand the importance of having dreams through drawing a “Dream Car” using their creative imaginations. The purpose of this contest was to bring out creativity and originality and showcase the immense talent of Pakistani children to the world. Students from Roots School System participated in this art contest with passion to show their skills and talents. Students also visited Toyota Rawal Motors Sawan Camp. The Toyota team also showed their spare parts, sales and services departments to the students. As a token of appreciation, the students were given KFC coupons to enjoy free meals. Out of 3,000 entries from the North of Pakistan, 75 most creative drawings were selected by the jury of Indus Motor Company and renowned Artists Jamal Shah and Leila Zuberi for the national round. In the first category under 10 years, Muzamil Ahmed, student of Roots Westridge Branch won the first prize followed by another Rootsians Manahil Adnan, student of Roots Capital Campus Islamabad, who won the second prize in this category. In the second category under 12, Maham Afzal, student of Roots School System, 38 NDR Islamabad, won the first prize. In the third category under 16 years, Abu Bakr Tiwana, student of Roots School System DHA I, won the third prize. Thus the Rootsians clinched maximum awards in all the three categories. The ceremony concluded with a thrill in the air as the students and the parents were sharing their delightful moments with the different media channels expressing their dreams and thoughts on the concept of their dream car. A very lively magic show was held to entertain the guests.

IIuI two-day conference from 6th ISLAMABAD STAFF RePoRT

The Iqbal International Institute for Research and Dialogue (IRD) of the International Islamic University Islamabad (IIUI) is going to organize a conference in collaboration with the American Council for the Study of Islamic Societies (ACSIS) and the South Asian Muslim Studies Association (SAMSA) in Faisal Mosque Campus of the IIUI on March 6-7. The broad theme of the conference is ‘Pakistan, South Asia and Muslim Societies’. The scholars participating in the conference would talk about the issues related to Islam, culture, politics, economy and society in the context of Pakistan, South Asia and other Muslim societies. In addition, the conference will highlight the significance of the South Asian region and its neighbours with Muslim societies in the recent years.

ISlAmAbAD: Fouzia Siddiqui and Amina masood Janjua cut a cake on the 40 birthday of Dr Aafia Siddiqui at Parade Avenue. STAFF PHoTo

WorkSHoP on bioTECHnoloGy

Farmers must opt for biotech crops: speakers ISLAMABAD

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STAFF RePoRT

NTERNATIONAL biotechnology experts have stressed that development of agriculture sector is important for food, social and economic security of developing countries while the options of using biotech crops can create a useful impact on farmers’ life who may achieve both the objectives of food security and economic development for their country. International Services for the acquisition of agri-biotech applications (ISAAA) experts Dr Mariechel J Navarro and Rhodora R Aldemita were addressing an international workshop on “International perspective about the future of biotech crops” here on Friday. The workshop was organised by Agriculture Journalists Association Lahore to explain the needs and importance of biotechnology. The members of the agriculture journalists association belonging to Lahore and Islamabad attended the event. ISAAA’s biotech expert Rhodora R Aldemita shared the history, needs and growth of biotec crops. She told the au-

dience that due to mega influx in human population, use of new technology had become need of the hour and only technological development can prevent the world especially developing countries from food insecurity. While talking about the application of biotech crops, she mentioned that 29 countries were currently using biotech crops and getting sustainable growth in their agriculture sector. She highlighted Brazil as the most successful developing country using biotech crops where 83 percent of soya and 65 percent of maize were being produced through biotechnology. She described the myths and realities of genetically modified crops as well and revealed the facts regarding food ingestion, horizontal gene flow, gene transfer to human causing diseases, gene flow to weeds, cross pollination, effect on non-target organism, loss of biodiversity and safety of water soil and air. Dr Mariechel J Navarro, another ISAAA representative from Philippine, presented the test case of biotech crops’ adoption in her own country and explained the role of media in the promotion of new technology. She talked about the role of Philippine’s media re-

garding biotech crops and termed it an effective communication tool in capacity building. To meet the challenges being faced by today’s agriculture in developing countries like Philippine and Pakistan, biotech crops offer a sustainable solution and there is dire need of commercialising the crops to counter food insecurity. While responding to different questions, the ISAAA experts explained that biotech crops could bring huge deduction in the expenses and farmers could achieve healthy production by using less labour than organic crops. They said farmers should be the decisive authority to go for best option for sustainable production but they should be educated enough to take such decisions. Earlier, Agriculture Journalists Association Lahore President Munawar Hassan welcomed the guests and participants. In his inaugural address, he stressed that journalists and opinion makers should develop their building capacity. He termed new technologies like biotech crops as life line for developing countries to cope with their growing needs.

FDE daily-wagers warn of offices’ closure ISLAMABAD oNlINe

The Islamabad Model Colleges Welfare Association warned the authorities on Friday that the entire Federal Directorate of Education (FDE) institutions would be closed until issuance of notification for regularisation of daily-wage employees. The president of the association, Aftab Abbasi, said they had given a call for strike on Monday to press for their demands. The employees distributed

pamphlets in all model educational institutions regarding closure of the institutions from next week. He added that a grand rally would be held to record their protest. He said that Capital Administration and Development Division (CADD) Deputy Secretary Fazl-e-Subhan verified the list of daily wagers and regarded their demands lawful. “But after verification, a total of 221 teachers of grade16 and 17 were regularised while other employees/non-teaching staff were neglected”. He stated that FDE Atif Mehmood

Kiani met the association’s representatives a day earlier and asked for relaxation of twenty days as there were no regular posts to compensate the daily wages employees. Kiani assured them that new posts would be created to regularise at least 425 daily-wage employees. He said that the employees would continue protest demonstration until issuance of regularisation orders. Meanwhile, the employees of the federal educational institutions including men and women continued demo here at Parade Avenue on 12th consecu-

tive day. The protesters with placards and banners chanted slogans in favor of their demands. A protester said Muhammad told Online that he has been working as security guard on daily wages since 1992. He applied for regularization time and again but failed. He said that presently he is receiving Rs. 5000 per month with no holidays. He said that number of employees including women have been working on very low wages, which was a big question mark on national and international labor laws.

Action against quacks: three clinics sealed ISLAMABAD STAFF RePoRT

The Islamabad capital territory (ICT) administration has launched a vigorous drive against quacks and illegal medical practitioners in the rural areas of the capital and sealed three private clinics. Assistant Commissioner (Secretariat) Nouman Yousuf along with District Health Officer Dr M Azhar and Drug Inspector Sardar Shabbir Ahmed conducted surprise checking of private clinics and medical centres in Bhara Kahu and sealed three medical centers and clinics, Seemi Medical Centre, Al-Falaha Clinic and Robert Clinic under the PMDC Ordinance 1982 for running illegal medical practice. One illegal laboratory, Khalsa Laboratory, was also closed down for running it in contravention of the Drug Act 1976 and the PMDC Ordinance 1982. District Health Officer Dr M.Azhar said that a total of 19 private clinics and medical centres were checked, out of which three being run by illegal practitioners in contravention of the PMDC Ordinance 1982 were sealed and challaned on the spot. He added that samples of medicines were also sent to the laboratory for test. Assistant Commissioner Nouman Yousaf warned that the drive launched against the quacks from Bhara Kahu would continue and stern action would be taken against illegal medical practitioners. He said teams would also be sent to carry out inspection of private clinics in other rural areas shortly. The chief commissioner and the deputy commissioner have directed the DHO and the drug inspector to carry out checking of private clinics and medical centres to ensure strict implementation of Drug Act 1976 and PMDC Ordinance 1982 and take stern action against illegal medical practitioners.


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Saturday, 3 march, 2012

Editor’s mail 11

Overpopulation: deadly for our existence A country’s population if well educated, trained and skilled, constitutes a valuable asset. On the contrary, largely uneducated and unskilled overpopulation is an unbearable liability, as is the case in Pakistan. It falls far beyond its capacity to sustain it. Government as usual appears to be least concerned. However, its growing crippling impact on daily life of the people has been highlighted by some demography experts. Rich-poor disparity may be but a minor contributory factor but not the sole cause. Nor removal of this disparity, though much needed, could be a pre-condition for stabilising population. It may take generations to fill rich-poor gap. Population growth is not a trivial matter for Pakistan and the government “must tackle it urgently.” Pakistan is a developing country without sizable mineral deposits. Its population sustainability primarily depends upon its arable land and water resources. Land is not a limit-

ing factor (yet). But its water resources are already far short of demand for irrigation to grow food and fibre. Prior to introduction of year round irrigation, famines often used to devastate parts of Punjab and Sindh killing thousands of people and more animals. Perennial irrigation began with the opening of Bari Canal passing through the city of Lahore in 1859. By the advent of 21st century Indus Irrigation System evolved into the world’s largest. It comprised 60,000 kms of canals irrigating 44 million acres of crop land. The region was bread basket of the country. Alas no more! The basket is empty and the mouths to feed aplenty. Why? Pakistan lost its three rivers viz Sutlej, Beas and the Ravi to India under the Indus Waters Treaty 1960. River flows declined due to siltation of Mangla and Tarbela reservoirs. No large storage dam was built since Tarbela 36 years ago. On the other hand, water demand arose due

Shahbaz Sharif and Sindh to fast growing population. Water availability fell 30-40 percent short of demand. Future outlook was but bleak. By the time Pakistan celebrates its first centenary, it would be rich in people but extremely poor in water, food and power resources. What to speak of the year 2050 even water scenario in 2025 looks extremely disconcerting. Pakistan’s water kitty may not hold enough to cater to full requirements of projected 221 million people, their children, grand children and off-springs by the year 2025 and beyond. Stated otherwise with dwindling river supplies, if fast growing overpopulation rise was not stemmed water shedding may be inevitable. It might result in severe food shedding. It may threaten the very survival of Pakistan. A Malthusian spectacle, maybe. Stabilisation of population is not a cut and carve activity with instant results. It calls for top priority measures for demand management commensurate

with resources by effective population control and maximum conservation of surplus water and its optimum productive utilisation. It is a long-term process to change human attitudes conditioned by socio-religious orientation and traditions of a mostly illiterate and largely rural populace. Nonetheless, people need to be made aware of the looming debilitating impact of water, food, and power crisis. A national campaign for effective population control would need to be urgently launched with active participation of the people, particularly religious elite. It is to be pursued on a war footing. Unless and until growing surge of overpopulation is not stemmed, water shedding and food shedding would be inevitable. A red signal for the rulers to wake up and save the country from being drowned by the surging flood of overpopulation. BASHIR AHMED MALIK Lahore

American bullying US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton warned Pakistan that Iran-Pakistan gas pipeline project if implemented Pakistan would face American economic sanctions. Uncle Sam should know that its policy of bullying the nations by economic sanctions create hatred against America. The people consider America is their enemy due to the hardships they face. America wants to keep its hegemony over the world and control the natural resources of the world, which is creating bad feeling about the sole superpower. Although the majority of Americans are compassionate and want peace, prosperity, freedom and liberty for others. Pakistan who helped America become the sole superpower by defeating Soviet Union has been paying a very high price, by fighting against mujahideen, who were created by the USA to fight against Soviet Union in Afghanistan. The American policy of dictating and determining what is good for Pakistan, has encouraged extremisms in Pakistan. Due to Uncle Sam’s arrogant mindset, the US is not prepared to learn any lesson from history, that the use of lethal force against other countries and killing innocent people cannot create goodwill for America. Why does the US not want Pakistan to solve its energy crisis by having natural gas from its neighbour country Iran? Why it suggests that Pakistan should have gas from Turkmenstan, which will pass through Afghanistan and Pakistan will have to pay Afghanistan for using its land, which Pakistan can have from India if the original project concept of IranPakistan-India gas pipeline is implemented. Iran is a permanent neighbour of Pakistan and both countries’ people share common heritage and their history is thousands of years old. Can Uncle Sam change its neighbour country Canada? Pakistan should learn from America to give priority to its national interest which is the well-being of every Pakistani. Therefore, it should not accept America’s bullying. S T HUSSAIN Lahore

A test of nerves… In cricket, Team Pakistan has always been considered as one of the most unpredictable opponent of all times. Reason of this unpredictability is that the team consists of highly talented players in the field of bowling as well as batting. However, despite this extraordinary talent and hard work our players fail to hold their nerves at the crux. Be it T20 World Cup final in 2007 against India or the recent series against England, after presenting a remarkable display of professional cricket, Team Pakistan fails to maintain the temperament of tackling pressure situation like any other team with similar talent. So a team like Pakistan, which by no mean lacks talent in any area of the game of cricket, should learn to hold their nerves in pressure situation not only to make most of their talent and abilities but also to bring pride to this cricket freak nation of Pakistan. MUHAMMAD FARRUKH KAZI LUMS, Lahore

Shahbaz Sharif, the Chief Minister of Punjab, during his recent statement in Sukkur has strangely claimed that Punjab has sacrificed for Sindh more than Rs 10 billions in the last NFC Award. Earlier, I have also seen Shahbaz Sharif’s statement on a private TV channel using highly furious language claiming what has been done with Punjab so far, if he were to tell that, there would be chaos in the country. First of all, I would advise Sharif brothers to immediately stop false claims as this unjustified trend resulted in a loss of more than half the country in the past due to unjustified policies of Punjabbacked establishment. It was fact, when East Pakistan was with us, Punjab was against the distribution of NFC Award on population-base as sole criteria but when East Pakistan separated, Punjab turned the table and became champion of sole criteria of population based NFC Award for years. In the last Award, only five percent weightage was given to the revenue generation, thus Award was a farce as far as Sindh was concerned. Sindh contributes about 70 percent into Divisible Revenue Pool and in return gets meagre amount. However, Punjab got included an article in the 18th amendment that says that the income from any province in the NFC Award cannot be reduced in future. I advise Mr Shahbaz Sharif to visit BBC website that says Punjab’s claim for loss in NFC is totally wrong. It was only the federal government that surrendered its 10 percent share. Therefore, Shahbaz Sharif’s claim is highly exaggerated. Further, I may remind Mr Shahbaz that when Nawaz Sharif was prime minister twice (a total period of six years), he did not launch/complete any mega development programme in Sindh. Instead, he abolished two mega development projects, Keti Bunder Project and Thar Coal launched by Benazir Bhutto. MOHAMMAD KHAN SIAL Karach

Fuel price hike

one million rupees fine. Even after the passage of this law, a number of acid attack incidents have happened. It will be a test for the government and the law enforcement agencies as to how strictly they can implement the law for women protection. According to the reports of Human Rights Commission of Pakistan and other NGOs, there are about two hundred incidents of acid attacks every year. The government should takes steps to control and register the sales of acid in the country, which is now freely available, to make it difficult for the individual to purchase it, and those who sell the acid to

the attackers should be accounted as a party to this horrendous crime. It is heartening to know that Sharmeen Obaid Chinoy has launched a campaign against acid attacks. One must also acknowledge the dedication of British-Pakistani plastic surgeon Muhammad Jawad who helps to restore the victim’s faces. The other Pakistani plastic surgeons in Pakistan should also follows Dr Jawad’s footsteps to contribute in saving the faces of helpless victims of acid attacks. LT-COL (Retd) JAVAID ANWAR Ralwapindi

The government of Pakistan has once again raised the prices of petroleum products. It was only a few months ago when the prices were raised and now again they have done it. The price of petrol has been increased by Rs2.75 per litre to Rs97.66. The rate of light diesel has been raised up by Rs3.08 per litre; kerosene oil by Rs4.38 to Rs96.40 a litre and; the price of HOBC raised by Rs8.67 to Rs126.87 a litre. The rate of CNG has been ratcheted up by Rs1.77 a kilogram. Why the government is suppressing the citizens with these increased rates when the citizens are already hit hard by inflation. Recently, it was said that a radio tax will be charge on mobile cards, have they not got any other way to charge the people? Sooner or later, we will also have to pay tax for walking on the road and that will also be not surprising for anyone. Electricity bills are already enough to make people worried but this new electricity tariff that has been announced is going to make their lives more unrelenting. The government is silent as citizens are burdened with tax. We will soon hear the petrol to reach a century and then again nothing will happen. MAHRUKH JAVED Karachi

I was coming back from school and was observing the beggars supplicating for alms on the side of the streets, the corrupt traffic policeman biding his time in the scorching summer heat and the cart-masters mercilessly beating their donkeys. Quite suddenly my attention was diverted to a man (the owner of a BMW) callously and brutally thrashing a poor thirteen-year-old boy. The teenager was being flogged for a traffic violation which was actually the aggressor’s own fault. Punch after punch. The boy was on the ground now. His cries turned into screams, his teardrops into drops of blood. I wanted to stop my car to end the beating. I wanted to say,” Aap reham karein!” (Have mercy, man!) THREE words and I could have stopped a horrific thrashing, but I chose not to interfere. I let the unfortunate boy suffer for a crime of which he was both oblivious and inno-

cent. (Monologue continues.) Ever since the incident, I have begun to contemplate Pakistan’s prospects and my role in it. Coming from a political family, did I not have any obligations? I had lived in a world of theatre. Acting had taught me how to walk in another’s shoes, and to feel what others felt. My complacency had created a void in me which continually increased as I understood the source of my guilt; I had failed to be simply human. Soon after, I began an internship at San Jog an international NGO which helps sexually abused children/prisoners; it helped turn my complacency into assertiveness and action. I remembered this ten year-old juvenile delinquent who had been wrongly convicted of rape. I stared into his helpless eyes. My few kind words of sympathy and promise of assis-

tance brought a faint smile to his sad face. A box of my old clothes brought joy to his eyes. The void felt less empty, and my conditioned callousness softened. From the ledge, I looked down below. That boy who had been unfairly beaten and the one who had been wrongly accused were amongst thousands going through oppression and injustice in my country. I needed to help mend their plights and stop their pain. Three words could have saved him! Three! It was time now. I plunged to my apparent “doom” and hit the mattress with a soft thud. (The lights turn off and the audience applauds.) As I take my final bow, I finally know what I’m meant to do. SAIHAAM AHMED KHAN Lahore

Sanctions for you, too if ... US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton has warned Pakistan that the Iran gas pipeline project is inexplicable and could invoke US sanctions that would further undermine Pakistan’s already shaky economy. This is the worst example for violating the international law. This is another attack on the sovereignty of Pakistan by the US. The US should know that Pakistan is facing energy crisis. Our economy is not improving due to energy crisis. Pakistan and Iran are two brotherly countries. If Iran

Against acid attacks Every Pakistani who believes in equality of gender is proud of Sharmeen Obaid Chinoy’s Oscar victory. Sharmeen Obaid Chinoy is the first Pakistani women film director who has honoured the nation, although it is a matter of shame for the nation that the Oscar winning documentary “Saving Face” is based on the subject which is one of the evils still existing in a maledominated society of Pakistan. Recently, the government has enacted a law against the acid attackers with 14 years to life imprisonment and

wants to help Pakistan for resolving energy crisis, it is good for both the countries. A common man in Pakistan asks what the justification is for the US to warn Pakistan. I advise to the government to go ahead with gas pipeline without taking US pressure. I also advise the US authorities for respecting the sovereignty of two independent countries. TARIQ HUSAIN KHAN Karachi

the awakening Theatre has always provided me with a vehicle to convey a powerful message: even the monologue of my life. (In this One Act play, the protagonist’s recurring and troublesome thoughts are being narrated backstage while he stands on a ledge.) My mind wandered, flitting back and forth, as I crept to the end of the ledge. I was ready to jump. There was an eerie silence that consumed me as if the world were holding its breath. Then there was the sound of the blood rushing to my ears as my heart scurried to match the pace of my thoughts. Were they watching? I began to take the final step…but then started to have second thoughts. What had driven me, quite literally, to the edge? This is a story of the personal consequences of the uneasy marriage between noble intentions and harsh realities in a misunderstood country.

Send your letters to: Letters to Editor, Pakistan Today, 4-Shaarey Fatima Jinnah, Lahore, Pakistan. Fax: +92-42-36298302. E-mail: letters@pakistantoday.com.pk. Letters should be addressed to Pakistan Today exclusively.


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12 Comment Pakistan’s options must be in line with our national interests

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overnments in Pakistan have often taken decisions that in the long term benefitted others than the country itself. The consequences of Zia’s agreement to jump into the US proxy war in Afghanistan suited him personally while it also helped Washington avenge the defeat in Vietnam. The highly negative consequences of the decision however continue to haunt Pakistan even after more than three decades in the form of extremism, militancy, and the resulting human suffering. It is heartening, therefore, to hear from Gilani that Pakistan being a sovereign country the government would do whatever suits us, and from Khar that we do not make our bilateral relations contingent on views and policies of any third country. The statements have been made in the context of Islamabad’s deal with Iran on the Pak-Iran gas pipeline. Alongside the gas, Iran has agreed to export 1,000 megawatt electricity to Pakistan to help overcome the country’s energy crisis that has crippled the industry and has harmed the trade. Pakistan hopes to export wheat, fertiliser, cement and fruit to Iran. A proposal concerning import of gas in return for wheat is also reportedly under discussion. Bilateral trade between the two countries is projected to rise to $5 billion target. The snag lies, however, in the US opposition to the gas deal with Iran. Hints have been thrown about taking recourse to the disincentives available to Washington if Pakistan was to disregard the US sanctions on Iran. That argument that Islamabad is bound to implement only international sanctions is correct in principle but then the country receives US aid which can be stopped if Washington thinks it does not serve its national interests. There is a need under the circumstances to give a dispassionate consideration to all the related aspects of the matter. Hard questions have to be asked. These include whether Islamabad is ready to forgo US aid, live without the military hardware supplied by the US and fight the terrorists on its own. The issues require a thorough debate in Parliament leading to the formulation of a policy regarding the US at the earliest. This will help us take decisions which are in line with our national requirement.

the rot within looking inside

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ll military coups in the country have been bloodless, more or less. All coups staged by the army chief have been successful and, despite the initial “shell shock” that grips almost the entire corps commanders’ coterie, they have all been effortless. But these coups take away attention from the ones that haven’t been successful. The ones that were not staged by the army chief but someone lower down the line. These were all unsuccessful. Consider the supposedly leftist ‘Pindi conspiracy case’. Consider the failed Islamist coup of 1995. Another one of those might have taken place but it was nipped in the bud, before it had even begun to be attempted. The Brigadier Ali Khan case, where several of his cohorts have also been arrested. The group had links with the Hizb-ut-Tahrir, the organisation particularly interested in grooming, culturing and mentoring mid to senior level officers in the armies of Muslim countries to take over their respective organisations. The Hizb, it appears, knows where the buck stops, especially in Muslim countries. Why bother with political Islam or even renegade militancy when you have at your disposal the most organised body of force in the country? It appears that the Brigadier planned to take over the GHQ and hatched a conspiracy along with a PAF fighter pilot who would attack the army headquarters when a Corps Commanders’ Conference would be taking place. The army prides itself on its professionalism and strong internal accountability. Perhaps if its energies weren’t diverted towards cracking down on the political class or journalists, it would be mindful of the spreading rot within its own ranks. Brigadier Khan was working in the regulations directorate at the GHQ, specifically the body that would check on stuff of the sort. The need for screening HR at armed forces, not just within Pakistan but the Muslim world as a whole cannot be overstated. Many of these states, with Pakistan at the top, feed its armed cadres a diet of retrogressive, antidemocracy drivel to “inspire” them. Problems arise when too good a job has been done of that.

Dedicated to the legacy of the late Hameed Nizami

Arif Nizami Editor

Lahore – Ph: 042-36298305-10 Fax: 042-36298302 Karachi – Ph: 021-34330811-3 Fax: 021-34330900 Islamabad – Ph: 051-2287414-6 Fax: 051-2287417 Web: www.pakistantoday.com.pk Email: editorial@pakistantoday.com.pk

Saturday, 3 march, 2012

Resetting roles Agencies have long held monopoly over patriotism

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etter late than never. The intelligence agencies have been finally put in the dock. The Supreme Court has finally taken up the missing persons case in which many of those wanted for different acts of terrorism were picked up and later found dead in mysterious circumstances. The other case that the apex court has finally showed the courage to take up for hearing is the Asghar Khan’s plea gathering dust in SC since 1996. The now octogenarian politician had alleged in his petition that politicians were bribed by the ISI to form an anti PPP alliance in 1990. According to an affidavit submitted by the ISI, its former Director General Lt Gen (rtd) Asad Durrani distributed Rs 140 million among anti PPP politicians in 1996 on the directions of the then Army Chief General Aslam Beg. The list, which mentions Nawaz Sharif as the biggest recipient having received Rs 3.5 million, reads like who is who of politicians, some of them deceased now but many of them still active. Of course, one can lament the role of the agencies in bribing politiBy Arif Nizami cians. But it is also a sad commentary on the selective morality that our politicos preach when accusing their peers of corruption but rarely practise. Mian Nawaz Sharif the other day, while informally talking to a group of journalists, candidly admitted to having received ISI funds with the caveat that he had not asked for them but was simply given the money. The question that begs an answer here is why in the first place did he accept the tainted money? Perhaps, in this case the end justified the means: to forge an anti PPP alliance in the form of Islami Democratic Alliance (IJI), midwifed by the GHQ. The recipients of the funds included luminaries like Mohammad Khan Junejo, Ghulam Mustafa Jatoi, Pir Pagara and even a number of honourable right wing journalists. The PPP, not without justification, complains that the ubiquitous Pakistani establishment has never reconciled to its role as the largest political

party of the country. It has indeed been dubbed as a security risk even by powerful sections of the bureaucracy, the industrial elite and the media. Nevertheless, it has managed to win elections four times since its inception. Mian Nawaz Sharif, after not being able to get along with any of the military chiefs while in power, has perhaps belatedly realised that the military establishment does not brook any powerful civilians who have the temerity to challenge its suzerainty. The PML(N), being no longer the favourite of the establishment, which created it, has openly accused the ISI of launching Imran Khan to cut it down to size in its citadel. Another petition seeking for the abolition of the “political wing” of the ISI has been filed in the Supreme Court. It will be interesting to note whether the spy agency would even admit that such a cell has ever existed. In the mid nineties, as editor of The Nation, the paper I had founded, I was summoned by the then head of the ISI General Nasim Rana to complain about an editorial suggesting that the agency should close down its political cell. The General informed me with a straight face that such a cell did not exist, so how could it be closed down? Anyone remotely familiar with the working and mindset of the intelligence agencies would vouch for their role in manipulating and engineering political events in the country. Whether the political wing formally exists or not, it is amply evident now that everything has been kosher for our intelligence agencies. With the advent of a fiercely independent higher judiciary and an assertive media the role of the agencies is now being openly debated. Proportionately, the capacity of the spy agencies to manipulate governments of their liking is also diminishing. With the formation of an independent election commission and a clear-cut course for formation of caretaker governments to conduct free and fair election, this kind of manipulation hopefully will become even more difficult. The surprisingly bold remarks of the Chief Justice of Pakistan, Justice Ifthikhar Mohammad Chaudhry, made in the missing persons case make interesting reading. The Chief Justice, who back in 2007 was told by a bevy of generals headed by General Musharraf, with Shaukat Aziz in tow, to resign, informed the counsel of the ISI and the Military Intelligence (MI) saying

that patriotism was not their monopoly. The role of the intelligence agencies in the troubled province of Balochistan, already being debated in the media, has come under scrutiny in the missing persons case. The Chief Justice has rightly inquired under which law and by which agency are people being picked up without leaving a trace? As usual “the supreme national interest” has been invoked by the agencies to justify their intrusive role in the province. Their counsel claimed that, “only those who played into the hands of the enemies of our dearest homeland, Pakistan, were being chased and hounded.” Unsurprisingly, monopoly over patriotism has been invoked to justify denying basic human rights to a large swath of the people of Balochistan, and for that matter the rest of the country. Now that the role of the intelligence agencies has come under scrutiny by the superior judiciary and the commentariat, it is time to reset it. The mandated role of these agencies cannot be denied. However, no one should be allowed to get away with murder (literally, in this case) in the name of a misplaced definition of patriotism and national interest. In the past, efforts to bring the ISI under some form of civilian control have been fiercely resisted. Already the judiciary and the media albeit belatedly are proving to be some sort of check on the activities of the spy outfits. However, it is still too little too late. For example, report of the judicial commission to inquire into the death of journalist Saleem Shehzad remained inconclusive. The judicial commission to determine the circumstances which led to taking out of Osama bin Laden from his Abbottabad hideout last May is yet to finalise its findings. Balochistan remains a festering wound despite the hue and cry about it. Perhaps the formation of a bi-partisan parliamentary committee to determine and scrutinise the role of the intelligence agencies is an idea whose time has come. There has been talk about giving another extension to the ISI Chief General Shuja Pasha who is due to retire on March 18. According to some reports, he neither wants one nor is he seeking it. Such extensions in service are not a good idea in any case. His successor should be announced asap. The writer is Editor, Pakistan Today

whitelIeS W by ess Aich

e hear that Chaudhry Shujaat Hussain is repeatedly asked that if cousin and brother-in-law Parvez Elahi is a candidate for PM, should a stopgap arrangement be needed in the near future. Political pundits also predict that any replacement of you-know-who would have to be from Punjab, given that the President and the NA Speaker are from Sindh and a Sindhi troika at election time could be disastrous for the ruling party. Not surprisingly, Parvez Elahi’s name keeps cropping up in this context. However, Chaudhry Shujaat, when recently asked this popular question, was honest enough to reply, “I don’t think PPP will part with this post in the year leading up to a general election.” He was also modest enough to add “However, if it did happen, we could fix everything in the country instantly.” That is political wisdom and we may add, a whole lot of confidence for you.

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t the recent expo of Indian goods in Lahore, the Indian delegation was in for a major surprise. Besides the efficiency of local police that caught a diamond thief in a sting operation within hours, the visitors found that someone in the Governor House was also singing their song. Apparently, Governor Khosa threw a reception for the Indian trade delegation and the major attraction on the venue was, move over Katrina Kaif and Vidya Balan, an item number by guess who? The guv, just hours earlier asked his ADC to get the full words on a Lata number. The ADC did manage the urgent task and our nightingale sang the number with zest. Now this diplomacy and trade

rolled into a song. ************** ast week Islamabad witnessed a mega wedding where the Supreme Court CJ’s son tied the knot with the daughter of a marriage hall proprietor. The five-star hotel was packed with no less than 1500 people, some claim it was more like 2000 guests. However, more conspicuous were the guests that were absent. We hear that the father of the groom had some tough decisions to make. President Zardari could not be invited because of the ongoing NRO case, the PM could not be on the guest list because of a Contempt of Court hearing against him currently being processed by the SC and there

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was no way that Mian Nawaz Sharif could be invited in the backdrop of the Asghar Khan petition where the Sharif name also crops up. In fact, the major political figures were nowhere to be seen, mainly because there are ongoing criminal or civil legal proceedings against them. The two exceptions were Rana Sanaullah complete with moustaches but we hear that he is family and you just cannot ignore your first cousin on your son’s wedding. Nor can you blacklist a black coat that has been your supporter and driver during the lawyers’ movement which explains Aitezaz Ahsan’s presence at the scene of the valima. Completely understandable, of course.

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Saturday, 3 march, 2012

iSi in the doghouse Transgression should not go unchecked

By Aziz-ud-Din Ahmad

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he SC is fed up with unending transgressions on the part of the agencies. On Thursday, the apex court referred to the rising hue and cry over the increasing incidents of missing persons in Balochistan. The CJ regretted that fingers were being pointed at the intelligence agencies. “If we do not follow the laws, warlords would get benefit out of the situation so created,” the bench said, adding that the court could not be oblivious of the protest camp of families of the missing persons. Politicians, including those once patronised by the ISI, refer to their past connections apologetically while condemning the agency of continued interference in politics. Ch Nisar Ali told a TV host the same day that the PML(N) had broken off all ties with the spy agency in 1992. He accused Gen Pasha of continuing to meddle in politics. Politicians from all major parties attending a seminar in Islamabad agreed to formulate new laws to curb the “unlimited and unchecked” powers of spy agencies and recommended major amendments to the constitution and relevant laws to tackle the issue. Air Martial (rtd) Asghar Khan’s counsel in SC has called the distribution of money to politicians by the ISI in 1990 ‘ a subversion of the democratic system’. Secular Baloch nationalists and sympathisers of religious parties are all on the same page in con-

demning the agencies’ transgressions. Those brainwashed, trained and pushed into jihad “in supreme national interest” are fighting against the Pakistan army in the tribal areas. They consider the army and ISI personnel and installations as their legitimate target. The media is exposing the excesses of the agencies as never before. TV talk shows and stories and editorials in newspapers have made the issue a common subject in households. The agencies are being legitimately criticised on two scores. First, for acting in blatant violation of law and constitution and transgressing their scope by indulging in political engineering. Second, grossly neglecting their real duties and thus being responsible for the big losses to life and property that could have been avoided through better intelligence gathering. At times, their acts of commission or omission have caused embarrassment to the country. Hundreds of unarmed citizens have been picked up in violation of law who remain untraced in Balochistan and elsewhere. The agencies avoided the difficult task of collecting the necessary information that could lead to the prosecution of the suspects. They instead went for the easy but cruel practice of picking up suspects and making them confess through torture. There is a perception that some of the missing died as a result of torture and were subsequently thrown on the roadside. Those who did this are responsible for creating hatred against the state in Balochistan. Equally reprehensible is the agencies’ indulgence in politics by funding politicians, creating splits in parties and making and breaking political al-

liances. This has hindered the natural growth of the institutions needed to sustain democracy During the last three years, gross negligence on the part of the ISI has led to colossal intelligence failures. This has caused avoidable disasters that include the attack on the GHQ, Parade Lane Askri Mosque tragedy, unnoticed presence of Osama Bin Laden in Abbottabad, leading to the military operation by US. Both types of blunders are interconnected. The agencies waste energy and resources on missions that do not come under the purview. When it comes to doing their real duties, they have little time or manpower to meet the challenge. Civilian governments in the past have been too weak to rein in the agencies even when they were convinced of the task’s urgency. Among other things the agencies thrived on the rivalry between the parties. If the government tried to cut them to their size, the opposition was sure to blame the administration of weakening the country and playing into the hands of India, seen by it as the eternal enemy. There is a countrywide realisation now that the failures on the part of the agencies can cause irretrievable losses to the country and could even lead to a national tragedy. This is the right time to take important decisions. The agencies have to be given a charter that precisely defines the scope and limitations of the security agencies and provides for a civilian oversight needed to keep check on the unruly bodies. Many think the Supreme Court is the right forum to take the first step in the direction. The writer is a former academic and a political analyst.

Comment 13

Collective shame The people factor is critical

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here is no dearth of events happening in the country that would put the nation to collective shame. One such occasion is the day when an elected prime minister of the country was put in the dock and indicted for contempt of court. But what is really demeaning is the manner in which the party that he represents continues to defy the apex court’s judgement trying desperately to either survive in office or claim ‘political’ martyrdom and en-cash it at the next elections. What is the upshot that has brought the country to this humiliating pass? A case for moneylaundering was registered against Mr Zardari in a Swiss court. It was still pending when, claiming benefit from the controversial National Reconciliation Ordinance (NRO), Mr Zardari had a letter written by the then attorney-general of Pakistan to the Swiss court to withdraw the case. When the NRO was declared void ab initio by the apex court, it sought of the government to re-open all cases against over 8,000 beneficiaries as they stood prior to the promulgation of the ordinance. It also asked the government to write a letter to the Swiss court to re-open the case against Mr Zardari. The government defied the order taking the plea that the president enjoyed immunity under the constitution. After pleading for over two years, the apex court finally started implementation proceedings leading to the indictment of the prime minister. The government’s stance is riddled with contradictions. On the one hand, it claims that there is nothing in the Swiss case, yet refuses to write the letter. It also claims total immunity for the president under the constitution, yet is afraid to move the court for claiming it. The prime minister’s defence attorney is on record as having repeatedly said that the letter will have to be written and that there was no harm in doing so, yet, with a senate seat under the belt, he stands in the court defending his client for not having done so. At the same time, there is no trace of the US$ 60 million that were understandably lying in the Swiss banks and have been withdrawn after the letter by the then attorneygeneral was written to quash the case. In a clandestine operation supervised by Pakistan’s High Commissioner in the UK, fully caught on camera, reams of proofs in the matter were retrieved from the concerned offices in Switzerland and whisked away in vans. Where is the money? Where are those reams of evidence? While the government does not tire of trumpeting endlessly its respect of the constitution and the rule of law, it is obdurately unbending in accepting the court’s constitutional right to interpret the same. Instead, it wants to manipulate this aspect of the constitution that rests exclusively with the judiciary. The government may have succeeded in delaying the sentencing – a conviction for the prime minister – but, by all indications, it cannot abort the inevitable. At a stage when formal charges have been

Candid Corner By Raoof Hasan

framed against the prime minister, there is the moral question and, according to some a legal one as well, whether he can and should continue to hold the coveted office? While there is little ambiguity as to the moral basis having eroded fully, some pundits may opt to wait for the final conviction before commenting on its legal sustainability. Also, we, as individuals and as a nation, have never really been beholden to the moral precepts and have repeatedly unmasked our degenerative proclivities, at times with destructive and debilitating manifestations. So, by all indications, Mr Gilani would continue to be the prime minister – even from behind the prison walls! What utter depravity! Where do we stand today as a nation? With an unrepentant prime minister having been indicted for defying the apex court of the country, the entire basis of governance, moral and legal, stands obliterated. If the prime minister violates the judgement of the court, how can the government that he heads expect the people not to replicate their ‘democratic’ leader? Why should they also not defy the decisions of the courts and proclaim their innocence just like their elected leader is doing? While the government is always keen to proclaim the parliament as supreme – an aberration as supremacy rests with the constitution and not the parliament – it is unwilling to recognise powers granted to other state institutions, including the judiciary, by the constitution. It is this paradox that has shaved the government of its muchneeded legitimacy and relevance to remain in power together with creating doubts as to the efficacy of the constitution itself. The country has virtually grinded to a halt. The economic plunge is unstoppable. The law and order situation was never any worse. Relations with our so-called allies, even traditional friends, had never sunk any lower than this. State institutions are tethering on the verge of collapse as rampant corruption digs its tentacles deeper. The review process of our relations with the US has stretched endlessly as the air route for NATO supplies remains open, thus nullifying the impact of the decision that was taken in the wake of the attack on the Salala check-post. But the government continues to claim laurels – unashamedly! The fast deteriorating economic situation in the country, the law and order nightmare, the government’s inability to fully comprehend and address the grave situation in Balochistan, the seemingly unstoppable radicalisation and fragmentation of the society and the looming dangers on the horizon in its interactions at the international level pose a grave threat to the country. To help retrieve the situation, the recipe is simple: stop protecting the errant individuals bent on defying law irrespective of their status and position and start serving and promoting the cause of Pakistan to the elimination of all irritants. The people factor would be critical. The writer is a political analyst and a member of the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf. He can be reached at raoofhasan@hotmail.com


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Saturday, 3 march, 2012

Lady Gaga lends star wattage to youth

empowerment CAMBRIDGE ReuTeRS

OP diva Lady Gaga brought her star power, her mom and some of her famous friends, including Oprah Winfrey, to Harvard University to launch a new foundation aimed at empowering young people and stamping out bullying. “If you have revolutionary potential, you must make the world a better place and use it,” Gaga said as she officially kicked off the ‘Born this Way Foundation,’ named after her 2011 hit album and single, with a series of events at the top US university. “This is about transformative change in culture.” The singer has often given a voice for people she feels lack representation in the media, and she formed the foundation to address issues like self-confidence, wellbeing, anti-bullying and mentoring. “I believe that human kind, as a whole, can change the world,” said style-icon Gaga, who wore a long black, backless dress, black hat, gloves and platform shoes to

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Harvard for what she termed “one of the best days of my life.” “The goal is to challenge meanness and cruelty by inspiring young people to create a support system in their respective communities,” she said. In 2011 Gaga, 25, topped the Forbes list of the most powerful people in the entertainment business - ironically, knocking talk show host Winfrey from the number one spot she had held three times in the past seven years. Winfrey said she joined forces with Gaga's foundation because it shared some of her core beliefs, including kindness, compassion and care for others. Gaga's foundation is expected to include specific outreach to gay youth. The singer/songwriter said that releasing the song further propelled a dialog that already existed between her and her fans - Gaga has almost 20 million followers on the social media site Twitter - and became a calling of sorts. “The more kids that I can get to come and eat hamburgers and talk outside my shows. I feel that it will start small, but over time will be very big,” Gaga said.

Anne Hathaway: Lindsay Lohan and I have more in common than people think LOS ANGELES AGeNCIeS

Anne Hathaway, the beaming actress who has come to be known as one of America’s sweethearts, said she was more like Lindsay Lohan “than people think” and wasn’t always the goody-twoshoes she appears to be. The 29-year-old ‘Dark Knight Rises’ star, made famous for playing the innocent outcast turned elegant royal in the 2001 Disney film ‘The Princess Diaries,’ reflected on how her mother, also an actress, helped guide her over the years. “Thanks to Mom, I never sit in judgment. Lindsay Lohan and I have more in com-

mon than people think,” Hathaway said. “We’ve all done things we shouldn’t. It is just that I did stuff at college when nobody knew about it. I’m not a saint. I wasted time doing self-destructive things. I found out you can only dance on so many tabletops,” she said. Hathaway’s quip comes on the forefront of Lohan’s preparing to make a fresh start in her career by hosting ‘Saturday Night Live’ this week. A Superior Court judge in Los Angeles told the 25-year-old troubled starlet on Feburary 22 that she seemed to be getting her life “back on track”. Lohan remains on informal probation for taking a $2,500 gold necklace from a Venice, California, jeweller without permission in January 2011.

IN LIMELIGHT

new yOrK: eddie Van Halen of Van Halen performs at madison Square Garden. AFP

P total rewards. AF rms at escape to rfo pe 5 on ro ma of levine HOllywOOD: Adam

HOllywOOD: tV show host Jimmy Kimmel attends escape to total rewards. AFP

De niro attends new yOrK: roberting Flynn’. AFP a screening of ‘be

lOnDOn: Shahrukh

ming on the een takes while fil tw be d ke ec ch up eKhan has his mak

Southbank. AFP

Won’t come free with Ranbir New delHI: Shirish Kunder, who was recently in news for his tiff with Shah rukh Khan, has apparently angered Akshay Kumar this time. the buzz has it that Akki was very upset with the director after watching the rough cut of his upcoming movie ‘Joker’. the Khiladi Kumar was unhappy with the way the film had turned out, and demanded quite a few changes in it. the 44-year-old actor was reportedly so angry with Kunder that he shouted at him and almost decided to walk out of the film at the last moment. However, the two later sorted out their differences. AGeNCIeS

mumbAI: Shahid Kapoor and ranbir Kapoor are said to be the next bFFs of bollywood. In fact, Shahid was reportedly happy to join ranbir in his world tour organised by the morani brothers, However, the truth is far from it. However, it was learnt that Shahid is not keen on joining the global event especially since it’s being promoted as ranbir’s official world tour. In fact, Shahid, who wants to be projected on an equal platform with ranbir, has made it clear to the organisers that he won’t be available for the tour. Shahid’s spokesperson confirmed and said, “Shahid is definitely not going to be a part of the world tour this year. He will be concentrating on his film

assignments.” the story however, runs deeper. According to a source close to Shahid, the actor was not too happy being just an add-on in what was being called the ranbir Kapoor world tour. “Shahid’s representatives made it very clear that if they wanted the actor to be a part of it, the show has to be promoted as Shahid and ranbir’s world tour. Shahid also has a big fan following overseas. when two stars are equal, it can’t be just one person’s show,” added the source. but when the media reports did not stop, Shahid had to call the morani brothers and inform them about his inability to join the tour. According to the source, Shahid has told the organisers that he would be available for the show next year in April, provided his conditions are met. “Shahid holds ranbir in very high regards but is clear on what he wants from this tour,” added the source. AGeNCIeS

mumbAI: trust Aamir Khan to cross all boundaries for concentrating on his projects. while, it is a known fact that Aamir Khan does only one project at a time, this time he has taken his 'dedication' to the next level. Khan has never been keen on a cell phone. but now, the actor has gone completely offline and decided not to access his emails, either. He wants to ensure that he's completely disconnected from everyone. A source said, “It's a unique style of working but that's why we call him the perfectionist Khan. Aamir wasn't very keen on having a cell phone and considers it a bane rather than a boon. He is amongst the few who think that cell phones can be done away with. For the major part of the last decade, Aamir did not buy a cell phone and it was always very difficult to get in touch with him. However, finally, he succumbed. However, now that he is working on his ambitious television debut show ‘Satyameva Jayate’, he wants to stay away from cell phones and emails. He does not want to get distracted from anything else till his television show is ready to go on air.” when contacted, Khan's official spokesperson, confirmed the news and said, “yes, Aamir wants to strictly focus on his tV show and is keeping away from everything else as of now.” AGeNCIeS


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15 Iran and Pakistan at the Oscars NEWS DESK TEVE Coll writes for the New Yorker that it has been hard to find much art in mainstream American politics this winter or to find much politics in mainstream American art, at least in the filmmaking category. The Oscars last Sunday celebrated nostalgic, self-referential, wilfully irrelevant films such as ‘The Artist’ and ‘Hugo.’ There were a few fleeting moments of inspiration, though; they came from filmmakers from Pakistan and Iran-two countries that bedevil, befuddle, provoke, and frighten the United States-who slipped in through the Academy’s carefully policed side doors for documentaries and international writers and directors. Asghar Farhadi, an Iranian director, won for Best Foreign Language Film for his intense drama about family and justice, ‘A Separation.’ Sharmeen Obaid-Chinoy and her co-director Daniel Junge won for ‘Saving Face,’ a documentary about a Pakistani surgeon who aids women who have been disfigured in acid attacks. It was striking to watch them come onstage and deliver their ac-

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HOllywOOD: the just-unveiled wax figure of teenage heartthrob Justin bieber is unveiled at madame tussaud's. AFP

ceptance speeches. In American discourse, Pakistan and Iran often appear as one-dimensional, cartoonish countries. Yet the space for independent filmmaking, journalism, and social activism Pakistan is growing; in Iran, it is narrowing. Pakistan seems to be emerging from the heaviest shadows of its recent crises, while Iran seems to be slipping down and down. In Pakistan, the space for speech and dissent is enlarging in bracing ways; in Iran, it is shrinking. On Sunday night, before the music swelled and the filmmakers exited the stage, they signalled these differences. Holding her Oscar, Obaid-Chinoy called out to her

Justin Bieber’s celebrates

18th birthday with a new single

country’s activists and exhorted them: “Daniel and I want to dedicate this award to all the heroes working on the ground in Pakistan. To all the women in Pakistan who are working for change: don’t give up on your dreams. This is for you.” ‘A Separation’ is a terrific film—compelling from the start, well acted, moving and challenging. It is certainly a better movie than any of the English-language finalists for the main Best Picture award this year. Yet ‘A Separation’ is, in fact, limited by censorship, both explicit, and, perhaps, self-imposed. The story follows a middle-class couple torn by disagreements over whether to

Rolling Stones to issue 50th anniversary photo book LONDON ReuTeRS

los angeles: Pop sensation Justin Bieber turned 18, and he celebrated his big day with his manager, Scooter Braun,who had a special gift he wanted to give him. “We decided to get you a car that would make you stand out a little on the road. It’s a Fisker Karma,” Braun said the car was a gift from him and Bieber’s mentor, Usher. The allnew 2012 Fisker Karma is the first luxury all-electric car, valued at more than $100,000. Bieber also announced that his new single, ‘Boyfriend,’ will be released on March 26. Justin talked about how growing up might affect his music. “People need to know I’m not a kid anymore,” he said. “I don’t want people to just think of me as a teen sensation. I want to transition, and become the greatest.” AGeNCIeS

Aamir Khan goes

offline

leave Iran; how to care for the husband’s Alzheimer’s-burdened father; and, later, how to cope with an investigation by a local judge into an alleged crime in their household. In Pakistan, where I was travelling during the past two weeks, the mood is different, as reflected in Obaid-Chinoy’s words at the Oscars. The country’s proliferating satellite and cable television channels are alive with criticism of the government and the military. It is only to observe that the country’s potential to identify and respond to its crises through uncensored politics, art, journalism, and social activism is becoming far greater than in Iran, never mind in a Stalinist prison like North Korea. ObaidChinoy, who grew up in Karachi and was educated at Smith College and Stanford University, launched a campaign in her hometown on Monday to leverage the publicity from her Oscar to eliminate acid attacks against women and bring perpetrators to justice. “The campaign is mainly aimed at making our society more humane and better to live,” the director’s mother explained. For that much, if little else this year, I’d like to thank the Academy.

Fifty years to the day after the Rolling Stones first took to the stage, the veteran rockers will publish a photographic record of their rise to fame and lasting success. ‘The Rolling Stones: 50’ will hit the shelves on July 12, the date in 1962 when the band debuted at the Marquee Club in London’s Oxford Street. The book is part of the 50th anniversary celebrations for one of rock and roll’s biggest acts. Questions remain about the relationship between lead singer Mick Jagger and guitarist Keith Richards. Ties were strained after Richards portrayed Jagger in an un-

flattering light in his 2010 memoir ‘Life’. The new book will feature 700 illustrations, 300 of them in colour and many taken from the archive of the Daily Mirror tabloid, which contains the largest newspaper collection of Rolling Stones photography. “This is our story of 50 fantastic years,” Jagger, Richards, bass player Ronnie Wood and drummer Charlie Watts said in a joint statement. “We started out as a blues band and we’ve had the kind of show that none of us could have imagined all those years ago.” The photographic autobiography, which will also feature words from the band, includes images taken by Philip Townsend, the photographer for the band’s first ever shoot.

Salman’s nerve ailment makes a comeback mumbAI: One would think that after an elaborate medical treatment in uSA, Salman Khan’s dreaded nerve ailment would be gone for good. but sources have stated that Salman has of late been complaining of a jaw pain. last year, in August, Salman underwent treatment for a rare nervous disorder. Post the treatment, Salman recuperated for a while in the uSA before joining Katrina Kaif and rest of the crew in london to shoot for Kabir Khan’s ‘ek tha tiger’. Salman had even assured his fans that he was doing well. but last month while shooting in cuba for the same film, Salman reportedly experienced pain in his jaw. Speaking to a tabloid, a source said, “Salman is feeling a knot in his jaw.” last year, the pain had led to Salman’s treatment and subsequent surgery. the pain was so acute that

the star was unable to eat properly. even though the recent pains are less in intensity, concern over the actor’s health has been worrying his near and dear ones. Some attribute the intense action scenes on the sets of ett as the main cause of the pain. but a source from the unit said that Salman never showed any sign of discomfort while he was shooting. A close friend of the actor said, “Salman is on medication for the same. but he doesn’t worry about it much. People suffer from all kinds of conditions blood pressure, diabetes, cholesterol. this too, is a physical condition. this doesn’t mean that it will deter Salman from living his life to the fullest”. Salman has been suffering of this disorder for the past seven years and post surgery he was said to be absolutely fine. AGeNCIeS

mumbAI: david beckham has been a part of it. And so have Taylor Swift, emma Roberts and ben Stiller. And now, Imran Khan is soon going to join the league and get interviewed by the two cartoon characters Phineas and Ferb. If all goes well, the actor will soon be a part of the show ‘Take Two with Phineas and Ferb - The Asia Chapter’. Though Imran refused to talk about it saying, “I don't have the liberty to talk about this. we are trying to work this out,” his spokesperson confirmed that the makers of this uS based show have indeed approached the actor. In fact, the actor, according to a source close to him, had been approached for the show earlier as well. However, due to his choca-bloc calendar, Imran couldn't be a part of the show at the time. Now, the actor has however decided to give the offer a second thought. Since the makers of the show approached him again, he has been trying to make time for it, revealed the source. “Imran wants to do the show but is busy with Vishal's ‘matru Ki bijlee Ka mandola’. The shooting for the film will go on for the next two months. but he is very keen on being on the Phineas and Ferb show. It has got him really excited,” added the source. However, whether Imran will go to the uS to shoot for the show or the makers will arrange for the show to be shot in India for the actor, is still undecided. AGeNCIeS

Demi Moore no longer in rehab,

now on ‘vacation’ LOS ANGELES AGeNCIeS

News is that the ‘Margin Call’ star has checked out of rehab at the celeb-favoured treatment centre. Moore went to rehab in the days following her brief hospitalisation in Los Angeles after she suffered a seizure-like episode during a party at her Benedict Canyon-area home on January 23. So, where is she now? Moore is now “on vacation” at an undisclosed location. “She's in no rush to get back to LA,” a source says. “She's on total lockdown and only talking to a small group of people.” Moore's camp never revealed what prompted her to seek treatment, but our insider says she sought help for both addiction issues and an eating disorder. The actress' family has been hanging tough in the meantime. Rumer Willis, who lives nearby and was at Moore's home when she had her medical emergency, was seen visiting her mom at the hospital before she went to Utah. Middle daughter Scout is attending Brown University in Rhode Island, and 18-year-old Tallulah has been staying with dad Bruce Willis.

Janet Jackson officially passes

on ‘The X Factor’ LOS ANGELES AGeNCIeS

Jackson, who was heavily rumoured to be one of the two people filling the vacant spots on The X Factor judging table, has confirmed that she won't be taking the gig. The singer says in a statement that she is “very flattered that ‘X Factor’ let me know that I was being considered for next season, but it just wouldn't be possible.” Her rep said the singer's commitment to her ‘Number Ones Up Close and Personal Tour’ and as well as a Tyler Perry movie is the reason behind her passing on the show. But what's even more interesting is the fact that Janet's team claims they had “absolutely no meetings” with ‘The X Factor’ in regards to a possible judging spot. Guess the rumours really were just rumours this time. Time to take to the phones again, Cowell. Might we suggest a Britney or Mariah?


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16 Foreign News

Saturday, 3 march, 2012

Obama warns Iran would ‘play victim' if attacked WASHINGTON

U

AFP

S President Barack Obama warned a premature attack on Iran would allow it to play the "victim" in the nuclear crisis, in remarks published Friday days before he meets Israeli leader Benjamin Netanyahu. In some of his toughest comments yet on Tehran's nuclear drive, Obama also warned Israel and Iran should take seriously possible US action against Iranian nuclear facilities if sanctions fail to stop the country's atomic ambitions. "I think that the Israeli government recognizes that, as president of the United States, I don't bluff," Obama told the Atlantic Monthly magazine. "I also don't, as a matter of sound policy, go around advertising exactly what our intentions are. But I think both the Iranian and the Israeli governments recognize that when the

United States says it is unacceptable for Iran to have a nuclear weapon, we mean what we say." Netanyahu arrived in Canada early Friday ahead of discussions Monday with

Obamaat the White House, and the Israeli leader this week said Iran's nuclear program will be "at the center of our talks." Netanyahu's government has maintained that all options remain on the table with regard to action on Iran, but Obama issued a blunt warning against an premature strike. "At a time when there is not a lot of sympathy for Iran and its only real ally (Syria) is on the ropes, do we want a distraction in which suddenly Iran can portray itself as a victim?" Obama said. Even if Israel were not a specific target of Iran's wrath, Obama said "it would still be a profound national-security interest of the United States to prevent Iran from getting a nuclear weapon." He also spoke of the "profound" risks of an Iranian nuclear weapon falling into terrorists' hands, and warned of "the prospect of a nuclear arms race in the most volatile region in the world, one that is rife with unstable governments and sectarian tensions.

iran votes in polls focused on nejad support tehran: Iran opened legislative elections on Friday, with the country's 48 million voters being called out in what is seen as a test of how much support President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad has among ruling conservatives. Supreme leader Ali Khamenei cast his ballot moments after polling began, state television showed. "The more people come and vote, the more beneficial it is for the future, prestige, security and immunity of the country," he said. He framed the poll as part of Iran's showdown with the West, saying: "The arrogant powers, who have been defeated and have been delivered a blow to the mouth, are repeating the issue of sanctions and human rights." The elections, to fill the 290 seats in parliament, are being boycotted by Iran's main opposition and reformist groups, the

leaders of which have been under house arrest for a year. It is the first nationwide poll since the disputed 2009 re-election of Ahmadinejad, which sparked widespread protests by opposition groups crying fraud and a bloody regime crackdown. The elections are essentially a struggle between conservatives who back Ahmadinejad and a hardline current that despises him. Each claims stronger fealty than the other to Khamenei. No protests were expected. Iran's police chief, Ismail Ahmadi Moghaddam, said security forces were "fully prepared" to counter any problems. There were no international observers present to watch over the vote. The Guardian Council, which vetted the 3,400 candidates allowed to run and will validate the results, called the idea of observers "an insult to the people" of Iran.

Egypt press furious over freeing of nGo suspects CAIRO AFP

KAbul: dogs fight during a traditional dog fighting competition on Friday. Thousands of people gather in a circle each week to watch large Afghan fighting dogs, known as Kuchis, attack each other in 30-second contests. rEUTErS

Suicide bomber attacks nATo convoy, 7 wounded KANDAHAR AFP

A suicide bomber on a motorcycle attacked a NATO convoy in the insurgency-hit southern province of Kandahar Friday, wounding seven people including four soldiers, an official said. "A suicide attacker rammed his explosives-laden motorcycle into a convoy of NATO troops in Dand district injuring four foreign soldiers, one policeman, one translator and one civilian," provincial governor Toryalai Weesa told AFP. A spokesman for NATO'S International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) confirmed the attack, but would not give details of any wounded soldiers, saying only that none had been killed. The attack bore the hallmarks of Taliban insurgents, who on Monday targeted NATO troops in a suicide car bombing at an airport in eastern Afghanistan, killing nine people but no foreign soldiers. The Taliban said that attack was in revenge for the burning of Korans at a US military base at Bagram north of Kabul, an incident that ignited days of violent anti-US protests. The only NATO soldiers reported killed in Afghanistan in the 10 days since the demonstrations erupted have died at the hands of Afghan colleagues.

Cameron admits riding horse in police-tabloid row LONDON AFP

Prime Minister David Cameron sought Friday to calm a minor domestic storm by admitting he rode a horse lent by Britain's top police force to the former editor of the now-closed News of the World. Scotland Yard revealed this week that it had loaned a retired police horse to Rebekah Brooks, a former editor of the NOTW and The Sun and a one-time key aide to the tabloids' owner, Rupert Murdoch. The news was seen as confirmation of the often cosy relationship between the British media and the police. Those links are being examined by a public inquiry set up into the phone hacking scandal which led to the NOTW's owners shutting down the tabloid in July. Cameron, an old Eton school-friend of Brooks' racehorse trainer husband, has been drawn into the row, jokingly dubbed "horsegate" by the press. Speaking to reporters in Brussels following a European summit, the prime minister apologised for allowing a "confusing picture" to emerge

over recent days about his connection with the animal. "I've known Charlie Brooks, the husband of Rebekah Brooks, for over 30 years. He's a good friend and he's a neighbour in the constituency we live a

few miles apart," Cameron told a press conference. "I have not been riding with him since the election (in May 2010). Before the election, yes, I did go riding with him. He has a number of horses and, yes, one of them was this former police horse Raisa, which I did ride. "I am very sorry to hear that Raisa is no longer with us and I think I should probably conclude by saying I don't think I will be getting back into the saddle any time soon." The Brooks borrowed the horse between 2008 to 2010, when it was rehoused with a police officer. The animal subsequently died of natural causes. Murdoch has defended his former protege Brooks, who quit as chief executive of News International, the publisher of the NOTW and The Sun, shortly before being arrested over allegations of hacking and police bribery last year. "Now they are complaining about R Brooks saving an old horse from the glue factory!" the media mogul tweeted on Wednesday. Brooks has always denied wrongdoing, and has not been charged with a criminal offence.

Egyptian newspapers angrily accused the ruling military on Friday of caving in to US pressure to allow foreign NGO workers, including a number of Americans, to escape trial on charges of illegal funding. One of them also accused the Supreme Council of the Armed Forces (SCAF) of trashing the concept of an independent judiciary, insinuating that it had strongarmed the courts into lifting a travel ban on the suspects. Amid the growing furore, American and other foreign democracy activists flew out of Cairo on Thursday night, airport officials said, a day after the judiciary lifted the travel ban. They traveled to Cyprus, from which they were expected to head home, possibly on Friday. Their departure is expected to ease tensions with Washington, which had urged the SCAF to resolve the case. American officials and legislators had suggested the row could imperil $1.3 billion in US aid to its key Middle Eastern ally. Independent daily Al-Tahrir summed up the general mood with its front-page headline: "Scandal. Under orders from the military, the judiciary freed the Americans and let them travel." "In only 24 hours, the military council proved to the world that any talk of judicial independence in Egypt is no more than an illusion," the paper said. It accused the SCAF of backing off under "pressure, negotiations and visits from American officials to Cairo." On Tuesday, US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton had said there were "very intensive discussions with the Egyptian government" and "I think we are moving toward a resolution." "But I don't want to discuss it in great detail because it's important that they know that we are continuing to push them but that we don't necessarily put it out into the public arena yet," she added. The activists working for four American and a German NGO are accused, along with a number of Egyptians, of receiving illicit foreign funds and operating without licenses. The Americans include Sam LaHood, the son of US Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood and head of the International Republican Institute (IRI) in Egypt. He and several other US citizens had taken refuge inside their Cairo embassy. The trial began on Sunday, and the defendants and their lawyers denied the charges, which they said were political. Two days later, the three judges handling the case recused themselves under mysterious circumstances. State news agency MENA said chief judge Mohammed Shukry wrote to the head of the appeals court, which designates trial judges, saying they could not continue the trial. It quoted them as using a formulation that could either mean they felt unease at the proceedings or restrictions on their work.


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Saturday, 3 march, 2012

Foreign News 17 China denies dam drying up river in india BEIJING AFP

loS ANGeleS: Scarlett Stoever, 23, trains at Cirque School in Hollywood. Circus professionals train at the school, which also teaches recreational circus classes to the public. ReUTeRS

15 shot dead across Syria, including 10 in Baba Amr BEIRUT AFP

Fifteen Syrians were killed on Friday, including 10 shot dead in Baba Amr after regime forces overran the rebel district of the central city of Homs, a watchdog said. Rami Abdel Rahman, head of the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, told AFP that 10 Syrians were “shot dead” in Baba Amr, but added: “The circumstances of their deaths are not clear.” The Britain-based watchdog said that regime forces had turned a Baba Amr shopping centre into a detention area and called on the International Committee of the Red Cross, which has a relief convoy poised to enter the neighbourhood, to inspect it. The Observatory warned of summary executions in Baba Amr after took control of it on Thursday following the withdrawal of rebel fighters. In Idlib province in the northwest, security forces shot dead a young man at a checkpoint near Maaret al-Numan, the Observatory said. A couple and their driver were also killed whern regime forces opened fire on their car at a bridge in the Idlib town of Saraqeb, it added. Another civilian was shot dead by security forces in the eastern city of Deir Ezzor, the watchdog added. The Observatory said 21 people were killed in Homs on Thursday, including 17 civilians caught up in the battle for Baba Amr ICrC ConvoY prepares to enter BaBa amr In sYrIa's homs: Meanwhile, a convoy of seven trucks from the International Committee of the Red Cross and the Syrian Arab Red Crescent is preparing to enter the Baba Amr neighbourhood of Homs, an ICRC spokesman said. "We are preparing to enter the district of Baba Amr," deputy ICRC spokesman Sebastien Carliez said. "The convoy arrived in Homs a few minutes ago."The trucks are carrying food, medicines, blankets, baby milk and other equipment to the area, which was overrun by regime forces after a nearly four-week pounding. The ICRC said Thursday it had received "positive signals" from the Syrian authorities over its request for a daily twohour humanitarian truce. The UN Security Council also on Thursday asked the Syrian authorities "to allow free access, full and immediate humanitarian personnel to all people who need help".

EU leaders sign new treaty for budget discipline BRUSSELS

E

AFP

UROPEAN Union leaders signed Friday a treaty designed to force governments to adopt balanced budgets through a "golden rule" or face fines. The Treaty for Stability, Co-ordination and Governance, the bedrock response to a two-year public debt crisis that forced bailouts for Greece, Portugal and Ireland, was signed by 25 of the bloc's 27 leaders. It "helps prevent a repetition of the sovereign debt crisis," said EU president Herman Van Rompuy after the ceremonial signing in the EU's Brussels headquarters. The economic and monetary union envisaged when the euro currency was introduced in 1999 "is finally walking on two legs," Van Rompuy said. It will

bRuSSelS: German Federal Chancellor Angela merkel, european Commission President Jose manuel barroso and Italy Prime minister mario monti speak before a working session during a two-day eu summit on Friday at the eu headquarters. ReUTeRS take effect once 12 of the 25 states have ratified the pact. Ireland has already announced plans for a referendum before the treaty can apply there. If states do not ratify the treaty, they will be blocked from bailout funding from a related rescue firewall being

set up as of July this year. In the pact, states that fail to adequately implement the sharpened rules in national law will be dragged before the European Court of Justice. The treaty updates the EU's Stability and Growth Pact, first agreed in the 1990s and last reformed in 2005.

China denied Friday that a dam it was building on a major river in Tibet was impacting the lower reaches of the waterway in India, despite complaints that water-levels there were plunging. The Brahmaputra has its source in China's southwestern Tibet region where it is known as the Yarlung Tsangpo, and it enters India in the mountainous, remote northeastern state of Arunachal Pradesh, where it it is called the Siang. The 1,800mile (2,900 kilometre) river then descends into the plains of adjoining Assam state and ends in Bangladesh in the Bay of Bengal, along the way supplying water to hundreds of millions of farmers and residents.Local Indian state lawmaker Tako Dabi told AFP Thursday he suspected China was diverting river water resulting in an estimated 40 percent drop in the flow at the Indian town of Pasighat. "Our projects have not affected the lower stream regions, including those in India," China's foreign ministry spokesman Hong Lei told reporters when asked of his nation's water usage on the river. "Overall, the utilisation of the river by the Chinese side is very low." China pays attention to the impact on the lower stream regions when developing its water resources, Hong said, adding that Chinese officials have briefed India on its development of the Yarlung Tsangpo.

netanyahu quizzed over lavish foreign trips JERUSALEM AFP

Israel's state comptroller has questioned Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu over lavish private trips abroad he made that were financed by businessmen, the Haaretz newspaper reported on Friday. It said he was questioned in secret for more than two hours at the start of the week, over an affair which broke out almost a year ago after an investigation by a private television station, Channel 10. According to Haaretz, the questioning was the final phase of the investigation before Netanyahu is presented with the comptroller's report "in a month or two." The disclosure came as Netanyahu prepared to meet in Washington on Monday with US President Barack Obama. Last April, public radio said the prime minister was suing Channel 10 over its allegation that businessmen had paid for lavish trips for him and his family at a time he was a cabinet minister.

Confident Putin brushes off Russia protests ahead of vote MOSCOW AFP

Vladimir Putin made a show of confidence ahead of Sunday's poll that is set to see him win back the Russian presidency, belittling the opposition as lacking in vision and brushing off protests. The premier said he has not yet decided whether he wants to stay in power beyond 2018 -- when the presidential mandate he is expected to win will expire -- but saw nothing wrong in principle with such lengthy political dominance. At a meeting with editors of leading newspapers around a table laden with white wine and snacks Thursday evening, Putin said the protests made him happy and that the opposition's leaders offered nothing substantive. "I am very happy about this situation, because that means that the authorities... have to actively react to what is happening in the country, to people's sentiments, and to meet expectations," he said. Tens of thousands of people have staged several rallies in Moscow over the past three months against unfair elections and Putin's monopoly on power, and many plan to demonstrate next Monday, a day after the presidential poll. "I think this is

a very good experience for Russia," Putin said, adding that the protests are mostly directed against his majority party United Russia, rather than himself personally. "You said the urban population is against. They are not against," Putin told one of the editors, who said opinion polls indicated the urban middle class is rejecting Putin. "There are less of my supporters (there), that is true. But all in all, my supporters are in the majority, even in large cities." The latest opinion polls predict a first-round victory for Putin in the election with support of nearly 60 percent, and the runner-up Communist party leader Gennady Zyuganov trailing with only around 15 percent of votes. Putin has not participated in political debates with four other presidential candidates, instead sending his campaign representatives to talk shows while he kept an image of a busy prime minister travelling all over the country. And while talking about his own series of articles on domestic and foreign policy, Putin said his opponents lack vision and offer nothing but empty slogans. "People in the opposition... have not offered any interesting, weighed, and thought-out steps to develop the country," he said, adding that "debates are not important" in

Putin declines to back Syria's Assad

his position, rather "results of previous work". Asked whether it is normal to be in power for such a long time, Putin commented: "It's normal if everything is working out, if people like it." Putin, who turns 60 this year, can under the law serve as president for two more consecutive terms, which would prolong his rule until 2024, when he will turn 72.

mosCow: Prime Minister Vladimir Putin stopped short of backing Bashar alAssad in the Syrian crisis, saying Russia had no special relationship with his regime and refusing to predict that the president would stay in power. With pressure mounting on Moscow to harden its line against Assad, Putin called on both the Damascus regime and opposition rebels to agree a ceasefire but also criticised the West for backing the rebels in the conflict. "We have no special relationship with Syria," Putin told foreign news executives late Thursday at a meeting at his suburban Moscow residence ahead of Sunday's presidential elections in Russia. Asked whether Assad had a chance to survive the crisis, he added: "I do not know this, I can give no kind of assessments." "It's clear that there are very serious internal problems. The reforms that they (the regime) have offered clearly should have been carried out long ago," said Putin in comments published on the government website Friday. AFP


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Saturday, 3 march, 2012

Gayle remains in exile for Aussies visit Page 20

new zealand drop troubled ryder for test WELLINGTON

Whatmore arrives to take charge as coach LAHORE

AFP

Troubled New Zealand cricket star Jesse Ryder was dropped Friday from the squad for the first Test against South Africa but selectors said the move was due to form, and not his latest drinking bout. The 13-man squad includes Rob Nicol and Andrew Ellis, yet to make their Test debuts, and marks the return of captain Ross Taylor who has been sidelined for nearly six weeks by injury. The Test starts in Dunedin next Wednesday. Ryder's exclusion was announced a few hours after he and pace bowler Doug Bracewell were dropped from Saturday's third and final one-day international against South Africa following a drink-fuelled bar incident. Team manager Mike Sandle said the pair broke team protocols by going out drinking and had "verbally reacted to taunts from the public" about New Zealand's sixwicket defeat in the second ODI in Napier. Bar patron Brendon Arkwright told the Rotorua Daily Post he had asked Ryder why he was "drinking like you've won the game when you didn't score any runs. He and one of his mates has taken offence to that and gone off on me." Ryder, 27, has a Test batting average of 40.93 and an ODI average of 34.37 but his career has been marred by incidents involving alcohol. Officially Ryder will miss the next ODI as punishment and the first Test because of form, but New Zealand coach John Wright told reporters standards had to be upheld. "He's a talented cricketer and it's up to him and certainly everyone has the opportunity to play if they perform and are fit and abide by some of the rules that go with being in the team," he said. "There are certain standards that have to be adhered to and there have to be consequences." Asked if other players should be helping Ryder in social situations, Wright said: "That can be difficult. Most players at that time of night are in bed... the professional ones." Meanwhile, New Zealand selection manager Kim Littlejohn said rookies Nicol and Ellis had performed well in the ODI series against South Africa and deserved their Test starts. "Both Rob and Andrew have shown promise against South Africa in limited overs cricket and we believe they can transfer their form across to the Test matches. New Zealand: Ross Taylor (captain), Brent Arnel, Trent Boult, Doug Bracewell, Andrew Ellis, Martin Guptill, Chris Martin, Brendon McCullum, Rob Nicol, Tim Southee, Daniel Vettori, BJ Watling, Kane Williamson.

F

STAFF RePoRT

ORMER Australian batsman Dav Whatmore has reached the city on Friday to formally take over charge of the Pakistan team as the chief coach. According to an official of the PCB he will be signing the contract before being handed the coaching job. Whatmore, who guided Sri Lanka to World Cup title, will be forming his coaching team with the guidance of the PCB officials. The 57-year-old Whatmore, who played seven Tests and one limited overs international for Australia, coached Sri Lanka to the World Cup title in 1996 and also helped Bangladesh reach the second round in the 2007 World Cup in the Caribbean. Whatmore was chosen by a threemember coaching committee of the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) after regular coach Waqar Younis left the post citing health issues in September last year. Former Pakistan opener Mohsin Khan was appointed interim coach under whom Pakistan beat Sri Lanka

and Bangladesh and whitewashed England 3-0 in Tests before they went down tamely 4-0 in one-day series and 2-1 in the Twenty20 internationals last month. The head of the coaching committee Intikhab Alam confirmed Whatmore will sign a contract. "Whatmore and Julien Fountain (likely to take over as fielding coach) have arrived here and Whatmore will sign a contract as head coach of the Pakistan team," Alam was quoted by a for-

eign news agency, refusing to give further details of the contract. Whatmore's first assignment will be to help the team in the four-nation Asia Cup in Dhaka, Bangladesh. Defending champions India, Sri Lanka and Bangladesh will also compete in the March 11-22 event. Alam said Whatmore would assist the newly-formed selection committee along with captain Misbah-ul Haq to pick the squad later Friday. Former spinner Iqbal Qasim was appointed head of the selection committee after Mohammad Ilyas resigned from the post on Thursday. Chief selector Iqbal Qasim said the squad for the Asia Cup will be announced on Saturday after consultation with Whatmore. "We will consult with (new coach) Whatmore on the team and then announce the squad on Saturday," Qasim told reporters. The PCB will also officially announce Whatmore's appointment on Saturday. Whatmore will be Pakistan's fourth foreign coach after Richard Pybus (South Africa), Bob Woolmer (England and South Africa) and Geoff Lawson served in the past.

AFC allots President’s Cup qualifiers to lahore LAHORE STAFF RePoRT

The Asian Football Confederation has allotted the Pakistan Football Federation (PFF) right to host the group stage matches of the prestigious AFC President’s Cup 2012 Qualification Tournament. The Lahore’s Punjab Football Stadium will pay host to the tournament from May 8 to 13. According to Col Ahmed Yar, secretary PFF, four champion clubs (three foreign countries and one Pakistan) will participate in the qualification round. “The award for holding this event shows the confidence reposed in the leadership of PFF professional competence, administrative skills and devotion for the promotion and development of football in Pakistan,” said the PFF of-

ficial. It will not be out of place to mention here that in the year 2007, Pakistan had been honored to host the similar event. The AFC President's Cup is an annual international association competition between domestic clubs’ sides run by the AFC. Qualification to the competition is the clubs from AFC-affiliated countries which fall into the AFC's 'emerging nations' category as laid out in their 'Vision Asia' document. Countries which are 'mature' and 'developing' nations are entered into the AFC Champions League and the AFC Cup, respectively. For an 'emerging nation' to have a team representing it in the competition, however, the country must have an acceptable football league. The team that represents a country in one season of the competition is the defending champion of the top-level leagues of participating countries.

Aamir plans to wed his lawyer Sajida

LAHORE STAFF RePoRT

Pakistan's banned pacer, Mohammad Aamir is head-over-heels in love with his lawyer Sajida Malik and both plan to get married soon. Report quoting sources said that the female lawyer who is a British citizen, has accompanied her client to Lahore so that she could meet with his parents. "Apparently Aamir fell in love with Sajida Malik when the spot-fixing scandal began in 2010 and their friendship and love has grown in the last one year," reports added. Sajida who was born in the United Kingdom but is said to be fluent in Punjabi and English, was introduced on the legal team by the Pakistan Cricket Board when the spot-fixing scandal first erupted in England. According to the report at one time when former PCB chairman, Ijaz Butt was meeting with the legal team in London in which Aamir and Sajida were also present an interesting incident took place. The report says that Sajida took a few sips from a glass of water and put it down with her lipstick embossed on the glass. And minutes later Aamir surprised everyone when he picked up the glass and drank the remaining water despite the lipstick marks on the glass, prompting Butt to remark to one of his colleagues that it appeared the two were in love. The report claims that though the female lawyer is a few years older than Aamir, they are in love and will get married with their families consent. Aamir, 19, returned home last week after serving three months in a young offenders institution in the United Kingdom for his role in the spot-fixing scandal, but he is still under a five-year ban from the International Cricket Council.

sri lanka win thriller to reach finals g

India out of tri-series race MELBOURNE AFP

Sri Lanka held their nerve to end India's late bid for a tri one-day series finals spot with a gripping nine-run win over hosts Australia at the Melbourne Cricket Ground on Friday. The Sri Lankans dismissed David Hussey with five balls to spare, clinching their place in the best-of-three match finals

against the Australians, which starts in Brisbane on Sunday. World Cup champions India, who narrowly failed to leap-frog Sri Lanka into the finals after a sensational runchase in Hobart last Tuesday, will return home this weekend after a dismal tour of Australia. Sri Lanka triumphed in a thrilling game which saw medium pacer Dan Christian take a hat-trick for Australia, before the visitors -- defending a low total -- bowled out the Australians with five balls to go. Hussey hit a run-a-ball 74 and finished the group

STANdINGS (games, wins, losses, tied, points): australia 8, 4, 4, 0, 19 sri lanka 8, 4, 3, 1, 19 india 8, 3, 4, 1, 15

melbOurne: nuwan Kulasekara (l) celebrates with teammate Dinesh chandimal (r) after taking the final Australian wicket to give Sri lanka victory. AFP

stage of the tournament as the top runscorer among the the three teams with 412 at an average of 82.40. Lasith Malinga finished with four for 49 as skipper Mahela Jayawardene chopped and changed his eight bowlers to defend Sri Lanka's below-par total. It was Sri Lanka's third consecutive victory over Australia in the series, making them favourites for the finals. "The boys showed character (after the loss to India)," Jayawardene said. "It was fantastic support, it's like playing in Sri Lanka. We lifted our game. I'm sure the crowd will follow us now, the lift that we got (from them), it pushed us in the last few overs." Although requiring just 4.7 runs an over after dismissing Sri Lanka for an low total, the Australians, led by Shane Watson in the absence of rested skipper Michael Clarke, struggled under pressure. Watson scored 65 off 83 balls and Mike Hussey 29 off 56, but it was David Hussey, who almost got Australia home with his skilfull farming of the strike with the tailenders. "A brilliant game of cricket... you never knew who was going to win. Dave Hussey batted beautifully, as he's shown through the summer so far," Watson said. Allrounder Christian captured a hattrick as Australia dismissed Sri Lanka for 238 off the last ball in their innings after Jayawardene had won the toss.

SCoReboARd

melbOurne: Australian bowler Dan christian (r) has Sri lankan batsman Sachithra Senanayake (l) trapped lbw on his way to hat-trick. AFP

SRI lANKA: m. Jayawardene run out (d. Hussey) 5 T. dilshan c wade b Pattinson 9 K. Sangakkara c Forrest b Pattinson 64 d. Chandimal c mcKay b Pattinson 75 l. Thirimanne b Pattinson 51 A. mathews c doherty b Christian 5 T. Perera c m. Hussey b Christian 5 S. Senanayake lbw b Christian 0 N. Kulasekara lbw b Christian 0 R. Herath not out 14 l. malinga b Christian 2 eXTRAS (b2, lb4, w2) 8 ToTAl (all out; 50 overs) 238 Fow: 1-10, 2-17, 3-140, 4-186, 5-195, 6-206, 7-206, 8-206, 9-235, 10-238 bowlING: Pattinson 10-0-51-4 (1w), Hilfenhaus 7-0-29-0, mcKay 8-0-39-0 (1w), d. Hussey 1-0-6-0, Christian 9-0-31-5, watson 7-0-28-0, doherty 8-0-48-0 AuSTRAlIA: m. wade lbw b Kulasekara 9 d. warner c Perera b malinga 6 S. watson b malinga 65 P. Forrest c Sangakkara b malinga 2 m. Hussey c Sangakkara b Thirimanne 29 d. Hussey c dilshan b Kulasekara 74 d. Christian c and b Senanayake 3 J. Pattinson c dilshan b Herath 12 C. mcKay run out (dilshan) 6 X. doherty c dilshan b malinga 7 b. Hilfenhaus not out 0 eXTRAS (w15, nb1) 16 ToTAl (all out; 49.1 overs) 229 Fow: 1-16, 2-18, 3-26, 4-113, 5-140, 6-151, 7-178, 8-187, 9-226, 10-229 bowlING: malinga 10-0-49-4 (3w/7), Kulasekara 9.1-1-38-2 (1w), mathews 4-0-8-0, Senanayake 10-0-50-1 (2w/3), Perera 0.5-0-8-0, Thirimanne 4.1-0-25-1, Herath 10-0-43-1 (1nb, 2w), dilshan 1-0-8-0 (1w/2) Result: Sri lanka won by 9 runs, man-of-the-match: dinesh Chandimal (SRI), Toss: Sri lanka, umpires: Asad Rauf (PAK) and Rod Tucker (AuS), TV umpire: Simon Fry (AuS), match referee: Chris broad (eNG)


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Saturday, 3 march, 2012

love leads, mcIlroy lurks, woods well back PALM BEACH GARDENS AFP

Davis Love matched the course record with a 64 on Thursday to seize a two-shot first-round lead at the Honda Classic over a group led by Northern Ireland's Rory McIlroy. As 14-time major champion Tiger Woods again found it tough to get putts to drop, Love avoided any putting problem completely at the 197-yard fifth hole, where he made a hole-in-one. The 47year-old US Ryder Cup captain capped his round with birdies at 17 and 18 as his sixunder effort on the par-70 course put him in position to challenge for his first US PGA Tour title since Disney in 2008. He became the 10th player to shoot 64 at PGA National, the first since Graeme McDowell last year. "If I had not birdied the last two holes, it still would have been a good start," Love said. "It's fun to tie the course record. And it's fun to shoot low scores." McIlroy, 22, arrived in Florida with a chance to claim the world number one ranking with a victory. On Sunday he was runner-up at the elite World Golf Championships Match Play Championship in Arizona. McIlroy, the reigning US Open champion, teed off on 10 and birdied 14, 17 and 18. He nabbed two more birdies coming in, at the par-four second and par-three seventh -- where his six-iron landed 12 feet from the pin. "It was pretty stress-free out there," McIlroy said. "I hit quite a few fairways and a lot of greens and gave myself a lot of chances, and that's sort of what you need to do around this golf course." McIlroy was joined on 66 by England's Justin Rose, Ryan Palmer, Dicky Pride, Martin Flores, Kevin Stadler, Noh Seung-yul of South Korea and Harris English. Reigning PGA champion Keegan Bradley headed a group of nine players on 67. McIlroy's round included two tough par putts from within six feet in his first three holes. "That's been a huge improvement, especially inside six feet," McIlroy said. "The more you see the ball go in from there, the more confidence you get." Woods, playing at PGA National for the first time as a professional, would have liked to see more putts go in but settled for a one-over par 71 that included four bogeys and three birdies. He drained a 19-foot birdie putt at the first hole, but didn't make another putt from outside 10 feet. A 14-foot birdie attempt at 18 brushed the left edge but didn't drop. Woods, seeking his first tour-level win in more than two years, played in more difficult afternoon conditions and said he was pleased with the way he hit the ball, even if he didn't score well.

Sports 19

Dubai celebrates academic excellence DUBAI AFP

D

UBAI'S status as an eastmeets-west business hub is being rivalled in the world of sport with cricket's state-ofthe-art academy, also a home from home for Pakistan's international brigade. Set up by the International Cricket Council (ICC), in company with Dubai Sports City (DSC) in 2010, the Global Cricket Academy (GCA) caters for players from around the world. Tim Anderson, the ICC global development manager, said the academy is the hub of the game's development. "The ICC's vision, together with DSC, was to develop a world-class, multi-purpose facility, and then provide a wide variety of programmes that could see anybody from the global and local cricket community use them," Anderson told AFP. Maqbool Dudhia, general manager of DSC, said the academy is fulfilling those objectives. "The idea is to be a cricketing hub for the world, something that suits it perfectly given the UAE's geographical location in relation to the rest of the cricketing world, and we are delighted it has not only fulfilled that objective but exceeded it," said Dudhia. Since the academy opened, 24 of the ICC's members -- including Australia, South Africa, Sri Lanka, England, the West Indies, as well as a number of English county teams -- have used the facilities for either camps, training or matches. The GCA and the adjoining Dubai Stadium have also become home for the Pakistan team which is forced to play their international cricket in the UAE because of security fears back

home. In addition, over 1,500 children have participated in the junior progammes, while the facilities have hosted several UAE club competitions and a number of training courses for coaches, officials and groundsmen. Former Australian wicket-keeper Rod Marsh introduced a multi-dimensional programme of education and coaching as the academy got off to a flying start. Since Marsh returned to Australia last year, former Pakistan opener Mudassar Nazar is in charge of the coaching, alongside former New Zealand paceman Dayle Hadlee. "I enjoy my role as it is an opportunity for me to pass on what I know about the game," said Nazar. "The enthusiasm and the will to learn is in abundance and I hope the talent unearthed at the academy will go places at international level." The facilities and the top-class coaching have attracted children of expats from not only India, Pakistan and Sri Lanka but also from European countries. "My son was wasting his time watching television and playing computer games before I got to know about the GCA and now he is on cloud nine, learning cricket," said Asif Kashodia, a Pakistani businessman. To test skills there is Hawkeye, allowing coaches to highlight weaknesses, not only in players but in those who want to learn umpiring. The ProBatter, which allows batsmen to simulate facing the world's leading bowlers, is the main attraction. Pitch Vision is a new plug-and-play coaching aid that allows analysis of players' techniques. There are various types of bowling machines all of which offer different and varied challenges, as well as numerous types of surfaces, both in the indoor facility and the outdoor practice and match pitches. There

DubAI: A boy bowls during a cricket training session at the Icc Global cricket Academy (Icc GcA) in Dubai Sports city. AFP are two full-sized cricket grounds, where warm-up matches and the firstever cricket series between disabled teams of Pakistan and England was played. And visiting school teams find the GCA a delightful place. "Our lads are learning heck of a lot. There are dif-

Asian Cup team to be named today: Qasim LAHORE STAFF RePoRT

Chief selector Iqbal Qasim said the squad for the Asia Cup will be announced on Saturday after consultation with new coach Dave Whatmore. The likely chances are that opener Imran Nazir would be given another chance to prove his skills. Imran Farhat after the resignation of Mohammad Ilyas as chief selector would surely be dropped from the team while Wahaz Raiz would also be give a rest while injured Junaid Khan is to be nursing his knee in-

jury and miss the Asia Cup. Junaid sustained a knee injury during the recently-concluded England series and will not be available for the Asia Cup and will be out of action for at least three weeks. Qasim will be sitting in a meting of the selection committee to finalise the team in consultation with captain Misbahul Haq and coach Whatmore. Qasim said that he would opt for talent rather than tried and tested players. “We are to develop the team into the best outfit in the world and take to the heights to the top,� he maintained.

ferent pitches like WACA and Asian wickets where you can play different lengths, and from cricket to catering we were taken well care of. We want to come again and again," said David Fallows, director of Bromsgrove School in Birmingham.

roddick avenges loss to Istomin DELRAY BEACH AFP

Andy Roddick beat Denis Istomin in straight sets Thursday to reach the quarter-finals of the Delray Beach ATP tournament, avenging his loss to the Uzbek a fortnight earlier. Roddick, the fourth seed, converted all three of his break chances to book his second quarter-final appearance of the season with a 6-4, 7-5 victory. Istomin had beaten Roddick in the quarters en route to the final at San Jose, California, in February, before falling to Canadian Milos Raonic in the title match.

lahore continue to dominate in punjab sports Festival LAHORE STAFF RePoRT

Lahore continued to dominate the final phase of the Punjab Sports Festival 2012 which is in full swing at different venues of the city. Lahore shone with eight gold medals in the boys karate while nine gold

medals in girls karate competitions. In boys school , 48 kg, Saweel Fayyaz of Lahore grabbed gold medal like wise Ali Mehmood of Lahore in 55 kg while Noman Gondal of Lahore in + 55 kg won gold medals. In boys college karate, Zafar Iqbal of Sahiwal won gold medal similarly in 55

kgs Mohammad Hafeez of Lahore and 55plus kgs Waqar Wakeel of Lahore grabbed gold medals. In the male university karate, 48 kgs Waqas of Lahore, 55 kgs Aize of Lahore and in 55-plus kgs Mohammad Shahid of Lahore won top psitions. In the general public karate, Ali

Haider of Sahiwal won gold in 48 kgs, Baber Ali of Gujranwala in 55 kgs, Adeel Afzal of Lahore in 55-plus kgs won golds. In the final girls karate, Sumra Ikram of Lahore won gold in 45 kgs, Mehak of Lahore in 50 kgs and Bakhtwar of Lahore in 50-plus kgs got to the top. In the girls college, Afia of Lahore

lAHOre: Punjab and DG Khan players in action during their Sports Festival Hockey match at the national Hockey Stadium. (r) Sargodha and Sahiwal players fight for the ball during the Punjab Sports Festival 2012 Inter university football match. PHoToS nAdeeM ijAz

won gold in 45 kgs, Memoona Qadeer of Lahore secured gold in 50 kgs whereas Quratul Ain of Lahore took gold in 50plus kgs. In girls university karate, Madeeha of Lahore won in 45 kgs, Maryem of Lahore won gold in 50 kgs while Anza of Lahore grabbed gold medal in 50-plus kgs. In Lahore, Inter-university Football, Faisalabad beat Gujranwala 3-0 and Sargodha defeated Sahiwal 4-0. In the basketball female colleges, Lahore won the final match beating Faisalabad 41-14. In the cricket, Lahore defeated Faisalabad by 1 run. In the college hockey girls, Gujranwala beat Rawalpindi 2-1, Lahore thrashed DG Khan 5-0, Multan overpowered Bahawalpur 3-0, Multan defeated Sargodha 5-0 while Faisalabad was given the walkover against Sahiwal. In university girls hockey, Punjab and Sargodha were given walkovers against Rawalpindi and Multan. In the semi-final of college hockey matches, Punjab College Sargodha defeated Punjab College of Faisalabad 7-6 on penalty shoot outs. The score was equal by 3-3 till the second half. Gujranwala College beat Punjab College Lahore 3-2. In the semi-final of general public, Faisalabad beat Bahawalpur 2-1, Lahore beat Gujranwala 6-5 on penalty shoots. In the volleyball college girls final, Faisalabad beat Rawalpindi 3-0 while Punjab University Lahore beat Government College University 3-1.


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lahore lions defeat ubl in national ODI cup LAHORE STAFF RePoRT

Lahore Lions grabbed a thrilling 15 runs win over United Banl in round thee of the One-day National Cup 2011-12 Division– II here at the LCCA ground on Friday. It were Fahad-ul-Haq and Farhan Asghar who with their batting and later Waqar Ahmed, Abdul Ghaffar, Hafiz Saad Naseem and Ali Manzar with their to the line bowling guided Lions to win In the other matches of the tournament, Lahore Eagles won by seven wickets against Multan Tigers, KRL had a 41 runs win over SNGPL and Quetta Bears got two wickets win against Hyderabad.

SCoReS group a At LCCA Ground, Lahore. Lahore Lions 220-8 in 50 overs (Junaid Jan 35, 74 balls, 3 x4s, Fahad-ul-Haq 57, 84 balls, 6 x4s, Farhan Asghar 64, 70 balls, 8 x4s, Waqar Ahmed 18, Shabbir Ahmed 3-41, Ruman Raees Ahmed 2-33, Kashif Bhatti 2-27) United Bank 205 in 44.1 overs (Saad Surkhail 37, 45 balls, 6 x4s, Itmad-ul-Haq 46, 62 balls, 6 x4s, Muhammad Sami 36,m Tahir Mughal 31, 39 balls, 2 x4s,1x 6s, Waqar Ahmed 2-25, Abdul Ghaffar 3-46, Hafiz Saad Naseem 2-41, Ali Manzar 2-46) Result: Lahore Lions won by 15 runs. Toss: United Bank Umpires: Kaukab Butt & Raweed Khan Referee: Saadat Ali At KRL, Ground, Rawalpindi. KRL 213 in 47.5 overs (Azhar Ali 37, Saeed Anwar Jr. 54, 77 balls, 5 x4s,1 x6s, Bazid Khan32, 32 balls, 3 x4s, Asad Ali 331, Imran Ali 2-34, Raza Ali Dar 2-46, Bilawal Bhatti 2-46) SNGPL 172 in 48.4 overs (Khurram Shahzad 36, 89 balls, 2 x4s, Azhar Shafiq 41, Yasir Arafat 2-22, Saeed Anwar 2-53, Noman Ali 3-29) Result: KRL won by 41 runs. Toss: SNGPL Umpires: Ahsan Raza & Shozab Raza Referee: Khateeb Rizwan Group B Niaz Stadium, Hyderabad. Hyderabad 124 in 30.5 overs (Zahid Khan 25, 58 balls, 4 x4s, Ghulam Yasin 25, 32 balls, Mohibullah 3-27, Shahzaib 2-22) Quetta Bears 128-8 in 41.4 overs (Bismillah Khan 17, Shahbaz Khan 33*, 78 balls, Gauhar Faiz 27, Mir Ali 2-47, Nasir Waris 3-16, Rizwan Ahmed 2-23) Result: Quetta Bears won by two wickets Toss: Quetta Bears Umpires: Anisur Rehman & Islam Khan Referee: Ilyas Khan At National Stadium, Karachi. Multan Tigers 195 in 48.1 overs (Naveed Yasin 54, 84 balls, 3 x4s, Abdul Rehman 69, 89 balls, 9 x4s, Mohammad Waris 20, Emmad Ali 2-36, Asif Raza 2-33, Waqas Aslam 2-32) Lahore Eagles 196-3 in 42.3 overs (Sami Ullah 73, 99 balls, 10 x4s, Muhammad Saad 65*, 112 balls, 5 x4s) Result: Lahore Eagles won by seven wickets Toss: Lahore Eagles Umpires: Akbar Khan & Khalid Mahmood sr. Referee: Naeem Ahmed.

Gayle remains in exile for Australians visit ST JOHN'S AFP

Former captain Chris Gayle was again overlooked by the West Indies when a 30-man training squad for the forthcoming one-day and Twenty20 series against Australia was announced on Thursday. Gayle hasn't played for the West Indies since last year's World Cup and has been involved in a long-running dispute with the West Indies board. The WICB said that 17 contracted players, along with 13 others who are under consideration for selection, will participate in a two-week training camp in Barbados from March 1 to 12. The first one-dayer takes place at St Vincent on March 16. The 17 contracted players are: Adrian Barath, Carlton Baugh, Devendra Bishoo, Kraigg Brathwaite, Darren Bravo, Shivnarine Chanderpaul, Fidel Edwards, Kirk Edwards, Shannon Gabriel, Nelon Pascal, Kieran Powell, Kemar Roach, Andre Russell, Darren Sammy, Marlon Samuels, Shane Shillingford and Devon Thomas. The 13 additional players under consideration: Samuel Badree, Tino Best, Nkrumah Bonner, Dwayne Bravo, Johnson Charles, Shane Dowrich, Danza Hyatt, Garey Mathurin, Sunil Narine, Kieron Pollard, Denesh Ramdin, Krishmar Santokie and Dwayne Smith.

spanish climber, 73, on Himalayan adventure MORALZARZAL AFP

Carlos Soria grew up wandering the Sierra de Guadarrama mountains that loom north of Madrid. Still climbing now at 73, he is making his mark on the vast freezing slopes of the Himalayas. On March 5 the grey-haired Spaniard sets off for Nepal, aiming to add a twelfth 8,000metre (26,000-feet) peak to his list of conquests -- a feat he says is already unequalled for a climber of his age. "These are the mountains of my childhood, my youth, my whole life, the ones I have seen the most of," he says, gazing at the peaks that loom over his home village of Moralzarzal, his eyes sparkling, his face lined and faintly wrinkled. Now his aim is Annapurna, a formidable peak of 8,091 metres in the Himalayas known for its high risk of avalanches. "It's

a bit dangerous, but I'll just have to see... Above 7,000 metres, if something happens to you, no one can help," he says. "I have permission to climb Dhaulagiri if I am doing well and feel like it," he says, naming another even higher Nepalese peak near the first, standing 8,167 metres. That would leave only one peak of more than 8,000 metres in the world left to conquer for the muscular pensioner, who stands 1m 65 cm high (five foot four inches) and weighs 59 kilos (130 pounds). "The last one left is Kanchenjunga," he says -- the 14th peak on his list, also in the Himalayas. "That would be for next spring." Soria says he has climbed more of the world's highest peaks than anyone of his age. "Nine 8,000-metre peaks after turning 60 and more after turning 65," he says. "There are people who have climbed some mountains, but not like me." Soria left school at 11 and worked as a

frame maker and then an upholsterer in Madrid, just south of where he lives now. But he heard constantly the call of the mountains. "Whenever there was snow I would leave at noon with a little sandwich and a yoghurt to go cross-country skiing," he recalls. "It was the post-war period. There was very little money and no information" published about the mountain routes, he says, recalling his younger days during the dictatorship of Francisco Franco. So Soria discovered by himself the rocks and trails of the Guadarrama range, where he met his wife Cristina and trained, sometimes along with their four daughters. It served as a practice ground for the world-class summits he went on to scale from the 1960s on -- in the Alps, the Caucasus, Alaska and then the Himalayas. There he passed the 8,000-metre mark for the first time when he was 62, climbing Everest and then three years later, K2.

umt university win Inter-varsity rugby c’ship LAHORE STAFF RePoRT

UMT University won the UMT Interuniversity Championship 2012 in style beating University of Central Punjab in the final 25-0. Even though the scoreline shows onesided game but still then tough and competitive games was witnessed. UMT captain Abdullah was the star of the tournament as he was not only the highest scorer but also played great game throughout the competition. The competition was held at the UMT campus which has a dedicated Rugby Ground and was participated by a total of eight teams included UMT, PU, DDC, GC Jallo, Garrison academy, UCP Lahore Garrison University, lSE. To the surprise of all the third place went to Lahore School of Economics who beat Punjab University in a thrilling match 19-10. Later chief guest President Fawzi Khawaja, who along with Rector UMT and university official and Tariq Niazi Sports incharge DHA distributed prizes among the winning team and players.

lAHOre: umt university team after winning the Inter-varsity rugby tournament.


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Sports 21

Murray downs Djokovic in Dubai

watcH it live ESPN Sports Center 07:30PM

top seed radwanska withdraws in malaysia

DUBAI

a

DubAI: british tennis player Andy Murray celebrates his win over Serbian world number one Novak Djokovic during their ATP Dubai Open semi-final. AFP

AFP

NDY Murray, the triple Grand Slam finalist from Scotland, achieved a measure of revenge over Novak Djokovic, the triple Grand Slam titleholder from Serbia, when he ended Djokovic's three-year winning sequence in the Dubai Open on Friday. Murray, who was narrowly beaten in a thriller of almost five hours by Djokovic in the semi-finals of last month's Australian Open, overcame his greatrival 6-2, 7-5 in another semi-final. It was an unpredictable match, with two or three surprising twists and turns, and with Djokovic attacking the net far more than usual, but Murray the better server and more consistent player. "It's obviously great any time you beat the world number one," Murray said. "I just tried to do some of the same things I did in Australia. "I was very close there against one of the greatest players ever, and today I did what I needed to - even though it nearly got away from me at the end." He was helped when after a quarter of an hour Djokovic, who started boldly, suddenly and unexpectedly faltered. He won the first ten points behind his serve, and had just delivered two hurtling aces down the middle, when four relatively unforced errors poured from the champion's racket. They were all groundstroking flaws, in the face of steady but not time-denying drives from Murray, who found himself with a psychologically valuable break of serve for 4-2. It helped confirm the feeling that the Scot has recovered much better from his Melbourne disappointment this year than the previous two years, and he capitalised eagerly. He consolidated to 5-2 with a good recovery from 15-40 on his serve - one rally with a net

KUALA LUMPUR AFP

DubAI: Serbian world number one novak Djokovic reacts after losing to Andy murray of britain during their AtP Dubai Open semi-final. AFP attack, the other with baseline containment - and then broke Djokovic again. This time two of the points came of Murray's own making. A backhand topspin lurched wickedly at the in-rushing Djokovic's feet to get Murray to love-30, and then two blistering cross-court backhand drives earned him the set. It was greeted with huge roars from the large number of British expatriates in the 5,000 crowd, and Murray's con-

tinued progress continued to be greeted enthusiastically. Another indifferent service game from Djokovic at the start of the second set enabled Murray to continue building the momentum. This time, after Murray had consolidated the break to reach 3-0, Djokovic responded by increasing the ratio of his net attacks but was soon 25 down. It was then that the match took two unpredictable final twists.

Top seed Agnieszka Radwanska pulled out of the BMW Malaysian Open on Friday due to injury after a string of rain delays caused a schedule pile-up that forced her to face two opponents the day before. "I'm so sorry I can't continue. Had a great time in Malaysia and I hope to be back in future," the Polish world number five told the centre court crowd in conceding her quarterfinal match-up with Taiwanese qualifier Su-Wei Hsieh. Radwanska did not explain why she withdrew, but Women's Tennis Association tour supervisor Pam Whytcross said the Pole had an elbow injury. "We were called into the training room at 2 p.m. and were informed that she had a right elbow injury," Whytcross said. Radwanska arrived in Malaysia on the back of a win in Dubai last Saturday, a result which saw her rise to a career high in the WTA rankings. But her first-round match with Akgul Amanmuradova -- originally scheduled for Tuesday - was pushed back a day due to heavy rain at the Bukit Kiara Equestrian and Country Resort in the Malaysian capital Kuala Lumpur. The match was again halted by heavy showers on Wednesday with Radwanska leading 6-2, 3-3. It was only completed early Thursday afternoon and giving Radwanska two hours before returning to court to defeat Karolina Pliskova 6-4, 6-4.

liverpool need to build on cup glory g

It’s a massive weekend for Liverpool, Arsenal, Spurs and Man Utd EPL CRYSTAL BALL KUNWAR KHULDUNE SHAHID

With 12 games to go, and battles for all the league slots seemingly going down to the wire, this weekend promises to be a defining moment in the title race, and for those vying for Champions League qualification.

bATTle FoR FouRTH Both Liverpool and Arsenal are on the back of lucrative weekends, as Arsenal came from two goals down to beat city rivals Spurs 5-2, while Liverpool vanquished their first piece of silverware since the FA Cup triumph in 2006. Whilst cup glory has its fair share of romanticism attached to it, what is indubitable is the fact that finishing fourth on the league table come May would be an a lot more meaningful accomplishment in the long run than even a cup double that Kenny Dalglish’s team can still potentially conjure up. Meanwhile, Arsenal managed to sermon a bolt out of the blue – and possibly the most astonishing one of the season at that – with their reversal against Spurs. It is becoming increasingly visible that taking a two goal lead in North London derbies is a bad omen of sorts, and maybe the next time the two archenemies lock horns, they could be best advised to keep their cushions to one, or find a third one swiftly. All the same, one doesn’t feel that it is a matter of conjecture that even Arsene Wenger wouldn’t exactly have had been confident of a comeback, considering his side’s recent capitulations. And this is exactly when Arsenal tend to muster their stagger – when it’s least expected of them. Last weekend’s exploits for the two competitors in today’s early kickoff might’ve been the highlights of their seasons, but a loss today for either side could easily erase all the euphoria. Liverpool currently find themselves seven points behind fourth-placed Arsenal, with a game in hand, and the equation is pretty simple for them: win, and they have the fourth place within touching distance; lose, and they can practically kiss Champions League football goodbye for another season. What Dalglish and his club must realise – as was highlighted in this space last week – that merely the Carling Cup triumph on its own doesn’t exactly count as a defining accomplishment. The triumph should be used as the springboard to bigger and better things; and if the Anfield club can finish fourth this season, with a cup triumph to boot, it could lay the platform for a title tilt within the next couple of

seasons. Au contraire, Carling Cup glory would mean very little if Liverpool finish outside the top four. Pretty much the same goes for Arsenal, for whom the only realistic objective of the season is finishing fourth – a position that they currently occupy; and if that does not transpire one of the two divorces should definitely take place – the WengerArsenal divorce or the Frenchman’s breakup with his platonic football philosophy.

CATCHING THe bIG FISH Last weekend’s result might’ve been the curtain call on Spurs’ title ambitions which, if Harry Redknapp’s interviews are anything to go by, was never really on the club’s agenda in the first place. Even so, what was

undoubtedly the main season target was finishing in the top four; and with the 5-2 trouncing the third place finish – which was a given not too long ago – has come under scrutiny, with doubts creeping in over a top four finish as well. While knee-jerks and pundits share a protracted bond, Spurs’ seven point lead over Arsenal doesn’t look that secure now; and it could further narrow down depending on results at Anfield and White Hart Lane this weekend. Another façade that surely must be bothering the Spurs faithful is their lack of success against the real big boys – they haven’t beaten Manchester United since 2000 – and would want to change that on Sunday. Who knows a triumph might even put them back in the title hunt, even though Redknapp would continue to downplay that.

United meanwhile, are on the back of an emblematic late-winner triumph, and know that victory on Sunday would ensure that they would still have the title within their own hands. Plus with the Spurs fixture out of the way, only one of the last 11 fixtures would see United take on a top eight side, and that would be the matchup at the Etihad Stadium in late April, which is already dubbed the ‘title decider.’ With relatively easier fixtures on paper to follow, and with City very much in their sights, United might just edge out City as the favourites for the league in the decisive run-in. On the other hand, a defeat at White Hart Lane could leave the Champions five points behind Manchester City and five points ahead of Tottenham in an intriguing little sandwich at the top of the EPL.


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Trial unlikely for US troops in Afghan Quran burning WASHINGTON AFP

Five US soldiers took part in last week’s apparently accidental burning of copies of the holy Quran in Afghanistan, but they are unlikely to face public trial, the Washington Post reported on Friday. Citing US military officials, the Post said an investigation had established that the soldiers removed the Qurans from a prison at Bagram air base, north of Kabul, after they were found to contain extremist messages. The books were placed in an office for safekeeping, only to be mistaken for garbage and taken to a landfill where Afghan employees identified them as Korans just as the pages caught fire, according to the investigation. The military officials also said while the five soldiers would face reprimand, it was unlikely their names would be released or that they would be put on public trial, the Post reported on its website. “For the soldiers, it will be serious — they could lose rank. But you’re not going to see the kind of public trial that some here seem to want,” one US military official was quoted as saying. “What they did was careless, but there was no ill will,” another added.

Baloch CM’s drunken sons beat up cops KARACHI NNI

Two drunken sons of Balochistan Chief Minister Nawab Aslam Raisani and their friends thrashed policemen in the Khyaban-e-Shaheen area of the Defence Housing Authority (DHA), Karachi. Assistant Sub-Inspector (ASI) Ghulam Hussain and Head Constable Liaquat Ali said that some drunken people were creating law and order problem in the area. They said when a police party intervened, it was subjected to torture. Policemen said two of those were Yadgar Raisani and Mir Hassan Raisani, the sons of Balochistan CM Nawab Aslam Raisani. Police registered a case against 20 people at the Darakhshan Police Station. The tortured policemen belonged to Sindh Reserve Police and were posted in Karachi eight months ago on emergency duty.

ISlAmAbAd: Streetlights left powered on during the day in the federal capital on Friday mock the government’s claims that the country is suffering from energy shortfall. inP

EC secy resigns owing to differences with CEC over Waheeda Shah episode ISLAMABAD

E

KASHIF AbbASI

LECTION Commission Secretary Ishtiaq Ahmad Khan resigned from his office on Friday owing to differences with Chief Election Commissioner (CEC) Justice (r) Hamid Ali Mirza over the Waheeda Shah episode. Sources in the ECP told Pakistan Today that the EC secretary wanted exemplary punishment for PPP’s Waheeda Shah for slapping a female polling officer, Anita Turab at the polling station on February 25. However, the CEC had a soft corner for the PPP leader. The sources said on February 27 the EC secretary announced withholding election results of PS-53 Tando Muhammad Khan – was won, according to unofficial results, by Waheeda – without the CEC’s consent, They said Khan later got a press release issued stating that the ECP had withheld the results for the by-election in PS-53. They said the CEC, who was in Karachi that day, took notice of the secretary’s action, saying Khan should have consulted with him before taking

such a decision. Later, serious differences emerged between the two over the issue, the sources added. They said Khan remained in his office until late night on Thursday and finally dispatched his resignation to the CEC Office. Khan had also sent a resignation to the prime minister last year over his reported differences with the CEC regarding provincial assembly by-polls in PK-69. However, the prime minister had

rejected the resignation and had directed him to continue. Later, the prime minister also approved a two-year extension in Khan’s contract. The two also had differences over fake degree cases. It is reported that 21 fake degree cases of parliamentarians were still lying with the CEC’s Office. On Friday, Khan appeared before the Supreme Court on notice in the Waheeda Shah case. The court observed that the

ECP and police had failed in taking an immediate action on the illegal happening. After attending court proceedings, the EC secretary said he had quit the office a day ago (Thursday) and the act was sufficient proof for the media to not get a chance to criticise him. He said his post on contract was a burden on him and he had informed the government regarding his decision. “The extension in my contract was a burden on me. Therefore, I have decided to resign,” he added. Referring to Waheeda Shah’s act, Khan said misbehaving with polling staff could lead to three months in prison, adding that Waheeda’s trial would be held at the ECP Karachi Office today (Saturday). He said the officer on duty at the polling station committed negligence where the incident took place, adding that the police had failed in providing security to the polling staff. However, he added that the ECP had earlier withheld the result of by-election for PS-53, and a case was registered against Waheeda on the directives of the commission. The sources said Khan’s resignation was not accepted until the filing of this report.

Waheeda has shamed the nation: CJP ISLAMABAD mASood ReHmAN

While hearing a petition on the manhandling of female election staff by a Pakistan People’s Party (PPP) MPAelect from Sindh, Chief Justice Iftikhar Muhammad Chaudhry observed on Friday that her action was more horrible than the extra-judicial killing of an innocent boy, Sarfraz Shah, by the Rangers in Karachi last year. He was heading a three-member bench, which included Justice Khilji Arif Hussain and Justice Tariq Parvez. The bench was hearing a suo motu case initiated on the application of Anita Turab against PPP MPA Waheeda Shah, who slapped the polling staff on February 25 during by-election in PS-53 Tando Muhammad Khan. The court noted that the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) and Sindh Police had failed to take timely action against Waheeda, and sought report from the authorities concerned on the incident until March 12. At the onset of hearing, the chief justice observed that the Sindh inspector general of Police (IGP) should resign from

his post over the incident. Defending himself, Sindh IGP Syed Mushtaq Shah stated that there was no comparison between the killing of Sarfraz Shah and the slap of Waheeda Shah. The chief justice replied, “The incident is even more serious than the extrajudicial killing, because it has brought shame to the country.” He said that due to the negligence of law enforcing agencies, such incidents were taking place. Appearing on

notice, Waheeda sought forgiveness from the aggrieved party and the court. But the court made clear to her that no injustice would be done either to her or anyone else, except that the law and the constitution must be followed strictly because in such situation when a public servant, who is a servant of the State, is not protected and secured against such vulnerable action, there would be a breakdown of good governance. The chief justice observed that if this incident could take place in the by-polls, then what would happen in the general elections. Attorney General Maulvi Anwarul Haq informed the court that FIR in the matter was not registered under the relevant sections of the Pakistan Penal Code against Waheeda. He said the incident warranted Sections 353 and 189 of the PPC to be applied. He said that under these sections, Ms Shah could be penalised for a two-year term of imprisonment with a substantial amount of fine. The Sindh IGP then submitted that the two sections, pointed out by the attorney general, would be applied in the FIR, to which the chief justice remarked that it should have been done without the intervention of the apex court.

Published by Arif Nizami for Nawa Media Corporation (Pvt) Ltd at Plot # 7, Al-Baber Centre, F/8 Markaz, Islamabad.

Editor: Arif Nizami, Executive Editor: Sarmad Bashir, Resident Editor: Rana Qaisar

E-paper PakistanToday 3rd March, 2012  

E-paper PakistanToday 3rd March, 2012