THE CHANGING FACE OF BACHA KHAN’S PARTY PG I 03 Jamadi-us-saani 15, 1434
frIday april 26, 2013
OUR SINS OF SILENCE
THE MECHANICS OF REINFORCING PREJUDICES
– TAHIR MALIK
– GERALD VAN WILGEN
PG I 06
PG I 07
Vol, VI, No. 07
TODAY’S WEATHER HIGH: 34 loW: 19 an afternoon thunderstorm
Pages 12 I Price 10/-
Amnesty International demands probe into poll violence OUR STAFF REPORTER ISLAMABAD: The Pakistani authorities must investigate the wave of attacks and threats on political candidates and election workers, Amnesty International said Thursday. In an open letter released ahead of May 11 polls, the organization also called on all political parties and candidates to commit to specific measures for improving the country’s human rights situation during their election campaigns. “This has been a particularly deadly election period marked by an
alarming surge in attacks and intimidation of political activists and election officials,” Amnesty International’s Pakistan Researcher said. Campaigning ahead of Pakistan’s upcoming general elections has been marred by human rights abuses. “At least 37 people have been killed and 183 injured in attacks on election officials and political party representatives and supporters countrywide,” the letter said. This includes bombings that appeared to target an office of the MQM in Karachi and a leader of the Hazara Democratic
Calls for prioritising HR in campaigning
Party in Quetta on April 23.” Further bombings on 24 April appeared to target a Pakistan People’s Party candidate in Peshawar and an independent candidate in Dera Ismail Khan, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa. Two election candidates have been assassinated in separate incidents by the Pakistani Taliban since the elections were called in March, the letter added. Election officials as well as candidates and supporters have faced threats from a
range of groups, and in the northwestern Tribal Areas the Taliban have banned certain parties from campaigning for being “too secular”. The Awami National Party (ANP) and MQM have been particularly singled out for attack, although members of other parties have also been targeted. On 16 April, at least 17 people were killed when a Taliban suicide bomber targeted an ANP rally in Peshawar. The same day the Baloch Liberation Army accepted responsibility for a bomb attack on a Pakistan Muslim
League-Nawaz candidate in Khuzdar, Balochistan that claimed four lives, including the candidate’s son, brother and nephew. “With these deliberate attacks, the Taliban and other armed groups have shown flagrant disregard for human rights, including the rights to life, freedom of expression and freedom of peaceful assembly,” the AI researcher said. The letter said the authorities must ensure adequate protection for those at risk of attack and in particular protect the rights to freedom of expression, peaceful assembly and association and the right to
Army will act as ‘quick response force’
SNEAK PEEK Malaria on the retreat in Pakistan, but threat persists In light of the World Malaria Day observed on Thursday, the challenges such as cleanliness, sanitation and sewerage remained the major obstacles against malaria in the most developing countries, including Pakistan. Page 02
CEC rules out delay in polls Calls for ensuring law, order before elections Directs for uninterrupted power supply on voting day
Contempt plea against raja, Zardari put oﬀ for 3 weeks The Supreme Court on Thursday adjourned for three weeks hearing of contempt of court case against President Asif Ali Zardari, former prime minister Raja Pervez Musharraf, Senator Rehman Malik, chief election commissioner and others. The president and former prime minister were issued contempt of court notices by the SC for not implementing court’s verdict in dual nationality case. Page 04
Militants targeting their opponents: Hoti Former chief minister and ANP candidate for NA-9 (Mardan-I) and PK-23 (Mardan II) Amir Haider Khan Hoti on Thursday said that militants were targeting those parties in the election campaign who had been in forefront to resist their onslaught. He added that the militant wanted to stop them from reaching the Parliament and coming into a position of decision-making after the upcoming polls. Page 05
UsaId discusses power, dIsCos with minister A four-member delegation of USAID lead by Jonathan M. Conly called on the Federal Minister for Water and Power. Dr. Musadik Malik on Thursday and discussed various matters of cooperation in power sector, improvements in Discos and financing for power projects Page 09
Nana Patekar refuses to work with sanjay dutt Bollywood veteran and three-time National Award winner Nana Patekar reportedly refuses to work with Sanjay Dutt or watch his movies. While many of Dutt’s friends and well wishers are coming out in support of the actor. Page 10
shakib shrugs oﬀ injury to lead Bangladesh to 300-6 Shakib Al Hasan made light of a thumb injury to score a quickfire 81 and steer Bangladesh to 300 for six on the first day of the second and final Test against Zimbabwe on Thursday. The total, compiled at a brisk rate of 3.41 runs per over, was more than the touring side's combined score in two innings in the first test in which Bangladesh were crushed by 335 runs. Page 11
life. “Candidates themselves also have a responsibility not to incite violence against rivals or segments of society such as religious minorities,” the letter said. In its open letter, Amnesty International urged all political parties and election candidates to prioritize human rights in their election pledges and their policies. “Pakistan’s political parties and election candidates must demonstrate that they are genuine about addressing the failure of successive governments to address impunity for human rights abuses,” the letter stressed.
OUR STAFF REPORTER
KARACHI: Caretaker Prime Minister Justice (r) Mir Hazar Khan Khoso off ffeers Fateha after laying flflooral wreaths at Mazar-e-Quaid. Sindh Governor Dr Ishratul Ebad Khan and Caretaker Chief Minister Justice (R) Zahid Qurban Alvi were there too. –ONLINE
ex-president formally arrested
FIA grills Mush for Benazir’s murder
To remain in farmhouse To be produced before ATC today Investigators to present challan on May 3
OUR STAFF REPORTER
RAWALPINDI: Anti-Terrorism Court on Thursday accepted a request from Federal Investigations Agency (FIA) prosecutors to question Musharraf and to include him in the investigation into the 2007 assassination of former prime minister Benazir Bhutto. After the hearing, the FIA formally arrested Pervez Musharraf at his Chak Shahzad farmhouse, which has been declared sub jail and interrogated the former president. During the interrogation, the former president was asked why Benazir Bhutto was not provided security upon her return to Pakistan, to which Musharraf replied that she was provided complete security. Musharraf also refused to accept the allegations against him and said Benazir Bhutto became the target of terrorists. He will remain at his farmhouse but will be produced at the Anti-Terrorist Court in Rawalpindi on Friday. Earlier, FIA special prosecutor Chaudhry Zulfiqar Ali told reporters that a joint investigation team will question Musharraf on two issues, making a threatening phone call to Bhutto and sending an email that warned her not to return to Pakistan, and failing to provide
adequate security to Bhutto after she came back from self-exile in 2007. Musharraf 's failure to provide adequate security to Bhutto "indirectly facilitated and helped terrorists in executing their plan to murder" her, Ali said. Musharraf will also be quizzed on why he did not respond to five letters from Bhutto seeking foolproof security ahead of her return to Pakistan. "Musharraf provided foolproof security to other leaders like (then) Prime Minister Shaukat Aziz but ignored Benazir," he said. The joint investigation team is expected to complete questioning Musharraf by May 3. "We will complete the challan (chargesheet) after investigating him by May 3 and submit the same in the antiterrorism court," Ali said. The joint investigation team will decide whether to seek physical or judicial custody of Musharraf, he said. Earlier, Rawalpindi bench of Lahore High Court hearing Benazir’s assassination case “dismissed General Musharraf ’s bail application” and said Musharraf can now be arrested in connection with the case. The court disposed of another application by the former president for exemption from personal appearance over security concerns.
Chemical weapons used in Syria: UK LONDON: Britain has "limited but persuasive" evidence of the use of chemical weapons in Syria, including sarin gas, the Foreign Office said on Thursday, following similar comments by US officials. A Foreign Office spokeswoman said. "This is extremely concerning. Use of chemical weapons is a war crime," adding that they had briefed the allies, partners and the UN on this information and were working actively to get more and better information. Reports earlier this month said British military scientists had studied a soil sample brought back from an area close to Damascus and found it tested positive for chemical weapons, although the government has not confirmed that. The British announcement came shortly after the White House said that Syria had likely used chemical weapons against rebel forces on a "small scale", but emphasised US spy agencies were still not 100 percent sure. Britain said Syria must allow in international observers. –AGENCIES
ISLAMABAD: Secretary Defence, Asif Yaseen Malik Thursday suggested the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) to use Army as a “quick response force” on the polling day so as to maintain law and order on the polling stations and other areas. The proposal came during a meeting which held at the ECP in which representatives of ECP, NADRA, Defence, Rangers, Ministry of Interior, Ministry of Law and all the four provincial governments participated. The meeting discussed the strategy pertaining to security of political leadership during electioneering and polling stations on the polling day and the participants shared views over the subject. The meeting decided that modalities to deploy Army would be left for the Army commanders and local administration so that the force could be used on need basis. The meeting decided to set up polling stations for the IDPs within the camps. The ECP also decided to contact Chairman WAPDA and Secretary Finance so that there is no load-
shedding during May 10-12 to keep the election process smooth. Online adds: Chief Election Commissioner Fakhruddin G Ebrahim reiterated that the general election, scheduled for May 11, won’t get delayed even by a single day. Ebrahim said that a comprehensive security plan has been prepared for the elections. He said security situation in Karachi, Balochistan and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa needed to be improved. “Our resolve for holding free and fair elections would not be affected by terror activities, and elections would be held on May 11.” Fakhruddin G Ebrahim said Election Commission could seek help from Army, Rangers, FC and other law enforcement agencies including FC in order to ensure peaceful polling. The meeting was attended, among others, by federal secretaries of interior, defence and law ministries, home secretaries of all the four provinces, DG FC, DG Rangers and IGs of four provinces. The meeting also discussed security situation especially in the context of recent bomb attacks in Karachi, Quetta and Peshawar.
5 killed in car bombing outside MQM office KARACH I: Five people were killed and 13 others sustained injuries after a powerful blast ripped through a car in Nusrat Bhutto Colony, North Nazimabad, on Thursday night. The outlawed TTP has claimed responsibility of the attack. In a strong reaction to the blast, the MQM Coordination Committee announced to observe a day of mourning today (Friday). According to DIG Zafar Abbas Bukhari, the blast occurred outside one of the election offices of MQM. The explosive-laden car, bearing
a government number plate (BL005), blew up with a thunderous blast, smashing window panes of buildings surrounding the crime scene and damaging the cars parked in the close vicinity. The deceased included three brothers, said the hospital administration said. MQM Chief Altaf Hussain condemned the incident in strongest terms, while senior party leader Wasey Jalil said the terror hits could not force them to restrict electioneering and they would stay in the electoral race notwithstanding all the odds. –AGENCIES
WAPDA wants to up power bills by 59 percent ZEESHAN JAVAID ISLAMABAD: Water and Power Development Authority (WAPDA) sought a steep increase of Rs. 4 per unit in power tariff to collect Rs 111 billion, despite knowing that the common man is already paying hefty electricity bills for electricity he hasn't consumed, due to crippling power outages. The Spokesman has learned from documents it has, that the power giant WAPDA submitted a petition with National Electric Power Regulatory Authority (NEPRA) seeking 59 percent increase in tariff for electricity generated from
hydroelectric resources for upcoming fiscal year (FY) 2013-14. The WAPDA move comes on the heels of Pakistan's recent dialogue with the International Monetary Fund (IMF) for a fresh loan of $5 billion. Interestingly, once NEPRA approves the 59 percent increase, electricity consumers will not only pay electricity bills at new rates but also pay a hefty sum in the name of General Sales Tax (GST), variable Neelum Jhelum Surcharge, fixed charges and some other money making elements in utility bills which directly goes to authority. The authority claimed that the
hydroelectric wing has 18 hydel power stations with an installed capacity of 6,879.56MW, however out of these 15 hydel power stations with installed capacity of 6612MW are currently in operation and the remaining 3 power stations with total installed capacity of 268MW will begin operating by June 2013, while rehabilitation of the 22MW Jabban hydropower is scheduled to be completed by the end of this FY 2012-13. Sources in WAPDA said the proposed tariff of hydroelectricity is based on projected net electrical output of 31,752 Giga Watt Hour (GWH) and estimated total revenue
requirement for power sales of Rs. 111.426 billion, while net hydel profit to be paid to government of Khyber PAKHTUNKHAWA (KPK) assumed as Rs. 6 billion for upcoming FY 2013-14. The power sector already forecast an alarming electricity load-shedding of up to 16 hours during the ongoing summer season because of power shortage, which is estimated at 6,489 MW in the grid system of Pakistan Electric Power Company (PEPCO) for the month of June 2013. The demand for electricity could reach 24,656 MW against the estimated power generation capacity of 18,167MW during summer season.
Because of no addition to the generation capacity against the demand growth along with other major reasons including high system losses and seasonal reduction in the availability of hydropower and circular debt, the country has been suffering chronic electricity shortage. In its petition WAPDA claimed that an increase in Regulatory Assets Base (RAB) has been estimated Rs. 174.185 billion to Rs. 279.666 billion due to more capital investment in the ongoing projects and transfer of completed projects into fixed assets.
related story NePra favours blue-eyed ﬁrm
CMYK FRIDAY, APRIL 26, 2013
CDA chairman picks waste to re-start ‘Clean and Green’ drive OUR STAFF REPORTER
ISLAMABAD: The Capital Development Authority on Thursday started the second phase of the “Clean and Green Islamabad” campaign from G-10 Markaz. CDA Chairman Syed Tahir Shahbaz along with traders, residents, school children,
representatives of civil society organisations and the authority’s officers started the second phase by collecting and disposing of garbage from the Markaz. Speaking on the occasion, Shahbaz said that the theme behind this campaign was to focus on general issues of each sector, such as which
don’t require huge funds and could be resolved by using existing manpower and resources. He said that the three days activity would be helpful to point out these issues and consequently taking measures for their eradication. “Any sector where we start a campaign will have a camp office established first and focal persons from
different formations of the authority along with their staff will also remain there to redress the complaints. After three days’ activity the enquiry office of that sector will be given the status of camp office to maintain tidiness of the sector,” said Shahbaz. He said that the campaign will continue for three months and would
be extended to all sectors of the federal capital, including model villages. While talking to media, Syed Tahir Shahbaz said that the purpose of relaunching the campaign from Sector I-10 was that the sectors of I and G series had remained ignored in the past. “These sectors need immediate attention. The three-day activity in
‘Exchange of ideas key to strengthening harmony’
Partisan police oﬃcers face the music ISLAMABAD: Action has been started against the police officers showing partiality during election campaign. In pursuance of directives of the returning officer, the Islamabad SSP has started taking action against the police officers who are siding with their favourite candidates during the election. Lohi Bher DSP Khan Khurshid and SHO Fayyaz Ranjha have been sent on leave while Sub Inspector Shaukat Ali of Bhara Kahu police station has been transferred to Rescue-15. It was further recommended that these police officers be not inducted to any police station till the elections are held. The candidates from certain political parties had alleged that these police officers were lending support and favour to their rival candidates. SSP Yasin Farooq has issued certain directives to police officers for strict compliance that no DSP or SHO will visit election office or camp office of any candidate. No government employee can either run the election campaign or facilitate any candidate during the campaigns as per rules and those found violating the directives will be proceeded against under the disciplinary rules, he warned. ONLINE
A man is lighting earthen lamps during his visit to the shrine of Hazarat Bari Imam. ONLINE
Malaria on the retreat but threat persists, says expert
Political commitment needed to achieve MDGs, says UN secretary general
Caretaker Federal Minister Dr Younis Soomro leading the ‘Education Walk’ held in connection with Global Action Week on Education at Fatima Jinnah Park. ONLINE
ISLAMABAD: In light of the World Malaria Day observed on Thursday, the challenges such as cleanliness, sanitation and sewerage remained the major obstacles against malaria in the most developing countries, including Pakistan. A renowned medical practitioner Dr Rubina said that in some localities, the cases are being diagnosed that shows the malaria victims have decreased over the years. Nevertheless, this does not imply that the menace has been eradicated completely, until and unless cleanliness conditions are not improved, malaria cannot be exterminated. “Stagnant dirty water accumulated anywhere provides a breeding ground for these mosquitoes that spread malaria and such water can be found abundantly in smaller localities and congested areas,” she said. She also emphasised that prevention is important and the use of insect repellants should be increased. Cerebral malaria is identified as the most dangerous kind of malaria and symptoms generally show intense shivering, weakness and high fever. “Blood tests should be carried out during that shivering so that treatment should be made in
70’s election still the best in turnout
Australian HC Economic Counsellor Melissa Kelly addressing a seminar on development and women inclusive strategies organised by COMSATS at a local hotel. ONLINE
Sector I- 10 has brought good results. With the cooperation of the residents, the CDA will improve condition of these sectors.” He directed focal persons of all formations of the CDA to utilise all available resources to facilitate the public and to resolve common problems of residents.
ISLAMABAD: According to the Election Commission of Pakistan the maximum turnout in any Pakistani elections held so far was in 1970 that revealed 57.96 per cent, while all following elections showed less than 50 per cent turnout. According to the ECP record, Pakistan is among those countries having lowest electoral turnout. This turnout dwindled to 45.04 per cent in 1988 elections, 45.40 per cent in 1990 elections, 40.33 per cent in 1993, and as low as 35.40 per cent in 1997, in 2002 with a slight upwards tilt at 40.70 per cent. The report states that a low turnout was feared during 2008 elections, due to dangerous law and order situation, occurred due to Benazir Bhutto assassination. However all such concerns and reservations proved to be irrelevant as 45.60 per cent turnout was recorded in 2008 elections. ONLINE
time,” she added. WHO Regional Director Dr Ala Alwan said in a statement issued on World Malaria Day that statistics over the years have shown a positive trend. “Between 2000 and 2010, malaria mortality fell by 26% globally. We were successful in averting more than 1.1 million deaths. International funding for malaria prevention and control has steadily increased and reached US $1.84 billion in 2012,” he told. According to Dr Alwan, the region has witnessed several successes in this regard. Two countries were certified as malaria-free, two interrupted local transmission and two are close to eliminating the disease. According to the World Bank Statistics, in the year 2008, 881 malaria cases were reported in Pakistan. However, lack of security and incidence of natural disasters continue to affect the battle against malaria in Pakistan. The global campaign theme for 2013 and the coming years is “Invest in the future; Defeat malaria.” The World Malaria Day was instituted by WHO member during 2007. It is an occasion to highlight the need for investment and sustained political commitment for malaria prevention. UN Secretary General Ban Ki Moon said that the fight against malaria is continuing and
increased international funding, matched by growing political commitment in endemic countries, triggered a massive increase in preventive interventions and expanded access to diagnostic testing and life-saving medicines, averting more than a million deaths. “Since world leaders adopted the Millennium Development Goals in 2000, a broad partnership of governments, UN entities, philanthropies and businesses has combined to protect hundreds of millions of people from malaria,” he said. “The MDG target of halting and reversing the incidence of malaria is now in sight, and 50 countries are on track to reduce their malaria burden by 2015. Malaria continues to inflict a major toll on least developed countries – primarily in Africa – and millions of people still lack access to life-saving interventions,” says Moon. He invited the international community to join hands with health organisations and the UN to eradicate this menace completely. “Controlling malaria is more than improving human health. It boosts social well-being and economic development. I urge the global health community, including political leaders in endemic countries, to maintain their commitment to provide universal access to malaria interventions,” he added.
ISLAMABAD: International Islamic University President Dr Ahmad Yousuf Al-Draiweesh said that the exchange of ideas was inevitable for strengthening the interfaith harmony among the religions. He was talking to media at end of the two-day international conference on “Grassroots Approaches to US-Pakistan Relations” jointly organised by the Intersections International New York and Iqbal International Institute for Research. Foreign scholars from various countries and prominent American intellectuals also participated in the conference. IIUI president said that such type of activities help to promote the understandings about religions and nullify the misconceptions regarding the religions. He said that every religion strengthens believe of peace and teaches the divine message of respect. He showed strong hope to the success and wished to accomplish the associated goals with this effort. He said this conference would prove new avenues for understandings and good Pak-US relations. He also laid stress upon the need of consortium of the intellectuals about interfaith dialogue to promote the harmony. He said that it is very painful situation that the people who do not have knowledge about Islam, but try to engage themselves in debate of Islamic Issues, they should not pretend to be a scholars. ONLINE
Student Council takes oath ISLAMABAD: An oath taking ceremony of the student council comprises of 23 members from different students’ societies held at the International Islamic University’ female campus. This ceremony was organized by the Faculty of Management Sciences and in that ceremony Director Female Campus Dr Zaitoon Begum was the chief guest on the occasion while FMS Dean Dr Bashir Khan, FMS Acting Chairperson Dr Tasneem Fatima and head of departments were also present. The council head and other members were elected on the basis of their abilities, leadership traits and general popularity in students. Addressing the students, Dr Zaitoon said that the FMS always had great honour for the students and wonderful opportunity for them to make better understanding of learning and excel their abilities. Dr Bashir said that the commitment of the council should prove itself in achieving high standard and maintain excellence in education. ONLINE
Disabled youth seek 2pc quota in jobs ISLAMABAD: A group of disabled youth from Larkana on Thursday demanded two per cent employment quota in government departments. Under the shadow of ‘The Help Special Persons Welfare Organisation’ at least nine disabled persons, out of which four university graduates, are staging sit-in here in front of the National Press Club for last several days. Welfare Organisation President Sajjad Ahmed disclosed that according to a survey, Larkana district occupies around 30,000 disabled male, female and children. He added that the said organisation has been working for due rights of the disabled persons since 2011 but not a single person was accommodated neither by the provincial nor the federal government. He said that earlier a hunger strike was observed for 60 consecutive days in front of Larkana Press Club but of no avail. It is mentioned here that one of the disabled members of the organisation, Sahib Khan has passed a competitive exam from Sindh province during 2007 but those interviews were regarded null and void by then newly elected government. ONLINE
Women looking at jewellery displayed at a hotel during a seminar on Development in Pakistan and Women Inclusive Strategies. ONLINE
UNESCO urges policy makers to recognise demand for teachers
Students participating in Education Walk in connection with Global Action Week on Education at Fatima Jinnah Park. ONLINE
ISLAMABAD: The United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation (UNESCO) urged policy makers to recognise the growing demand for trained teachers to provide quality education to all children in Pakistan. A public forum was organised jointly by UNESCO and UNICEF held in Islamabad to observe education for All, here on Thursday in which UNESCO representative Dr Kozue Kay Nagata said, “Teachers, with their hard work, affection and
stimulating interaction with children, not only transfer information, knowledge, and new skills to their pupils, but also play a key role in making the teaching-learning a joyful and participatory phenomenon,”. She emphasised the welcoming news of ICT act and Sindh provincial act that had been passed on free and compulsory education for all children of age 5-16. The event provided a platform to educationists, teachers, policy makers and civil society representatives, to recognise the fact
that untrained teachers are one of the major obstacles in achieving universal primary education in Pakistan. Raising the issue of trained teachers in Pakistan, Qamar Zaman said that educated and professional teachers are mostly concentrated in cities and real challenge about qualified teachers is in rural and remote areas. He added, “Due to absence and inability of teachers to handle the students properly, dropout rate of students in rural areas is higher than urban ones.” ONLINE
POWER ALLEYS |
FRIDAY, APRIL 26, 2013
The changing face of Bacha Khan’s Party enom Inc. This should not be held against me in a court of law as I solemnly declare that these are absolute lies, dirty whispers and wild speculation that I have heard while crawling in the dark power corridors of the creepy Capital. You will believe them at your own risk Shh...If you have venom to spill please don’t hesitate to share with us on our blog at www.thespokesman.pk
PPP missing from the election scene
s the election campaign heats up, the PPP continues to be missing from the scene. The campaign is gradually becoming a fight between PML (N) and PTI. Both Imran Khan and the Sharif brothers were found attacking each other in public meetings. And it is beginning to get personal and nasty. Nawaz Sharif, who has been posing to ignore PTI—as if it was a much lesser rival—has finally come out in the open, attacking Imran Khan in person. He gave up his sobriety garb and called him “madari ballay baaz.” Brother Shahbaz Sharif was equally personal in his attacks in his Jhang public meeting, terming the PTI slogan “Uttay Allah, thallay balla” as blasphemous. Imran, it seemed, was glad that he was being treated as equal. He too responded in kind by resorting to his cricket terminology. The PPP leadership crisis continues as the Presidency has been reduced to issuing a clarification against an attack on Asif Zardari. Bilalwal Bhutto is again missing after issuing a video message. Makhdoom Amin Faheem suggested in a press conference that master Bilawal was out of the country. This leaves the PPP further faceless. The PPP is hardly left with any second tier to lead its campaign. The luminaries such as Aitezaz Ahsan and Raza Rabbani were cut to size during the last five years, though Bushra Aitezaz is the only PPP candidate who is creating some waves in her campaign. The likes of Qamar Zaman Kaira and Amin Fahim are all bogged down in their constituencies. This may be the only time in the country’s history where the ruling party is absent from the election campaign. There was hardly any major public meeting that the media found worthy to report. And this is the condition 15 days before the elections. And it’s not just about Punjab, which the party seems to have given up. The campaign is equally lackluster in Sindh. PPP’s only saving grace is the Saraiki belt where the solid electables, led by Punjab Governor Ahmad Mahmood, are holding the fort. Southern Punjab might give the PPP some relief. The party seems strong in Rahimyar Khan, Bahawalpur, D G Khan, Muzaffargarh and Layyah, giving positive hope in 15 constituencies only in these districts. A positive result for the PPP in Multan might be a bonus. But will this raise the PPP victory of being a reasonable third player, benefitting from the battle between PTI and PML-N, is yet to be seen.
Senator Bangash suggests gun-power instead of age old mantra of non-violence SAEED MINHAS wami National Party (ANP) was supposedly founded on the principles of Khudai Khidmatgar propagated by Khan Abdul Ghaffar Khan, which talk about nonviolence. Like any other political philosophy and party, though, it too has degenerated to such a level that its Senator is now openly warning of launching an insurgency if the demands of his constituents are not met. Khan Ghaffar Khan, known as Sarhadi Gandhi and a fast friend of Mohatama Gandhi since the start of 20th century, would never had thought of resorting to violence even when the British Raj let hell loose on his followers following the 1929 movement named Khudai Khidmatgar. He did not even think of violence when he felt betrayed by Indian Congress for accepting the partition of subcontinent. His only words quoted in the annals of history after feeling hurt by Ghandhi’s nonconsultative posture towards him were that “You have thrown us to the wolves.” One of his three sons, Khan Abdul Wali Khan, who later founded ANP, remained a member of Pakistan’s National Assembly and played an important hand in the formation of the 1973 constitution. Despite having a liberal stand against extremism, the party has hit the headlines for many odd reasons throughout these years. Starting from Begum Naseem Wali Khan’s undergarments episode in foreign lands to Hoti’s land grabbing, from Bilour’s cinemas and Railways sagas to Asfandyar Wali’s purported money-matters in the name of his son’s dwindling business fortunes in far eastern countries, Khudai Khidmatgars have become all but inward looking. In the latest breakaway from its pacifist posture, party’s Senator Abdul Nabi Bangash, who also happens to be the chairman of Senate’s standing committee for education and training, has warned the federal government of a Baluchistan like mutiny in Hangu for depriving its population of basic amenities of life. Though he did not set any deadline for starting such a violent insurgency, the intent and content of his talk with the media was enough to convey that it’s coming anytime sooner rather than later. No doubt the issue has been of great significance because the lands from where state run organizations, with the help of a
Hungarian oil company, have been extracting over 700 MMCFD gas and over 9000 barrels of oil on a daily basis. Despite assurances to the local tribes and residents, neither foreign firms nor local state organizations have fulfilled any of the promises. Resultantly, a group of 28 notables from TAL called upon Senator Bangash in Islamabad, where in front of the media teams they vowed to resort to a full scale insurgency if their demands are not met henceforth. Whether it’s a party policy or a political strategy Senator Bangash was towing was not clear. What remained absolutely clear was that he was hell
bent upon bulldozing the non-violent norms of his party and stage a revolt if his home town people are not compensated. OGDCL has been extracting Gas and Condensate/Oil since 2002 from TAL which accounts for 8% and 12% of the country’s total Gas and Condensate/Oil production respectively. It is a Joint Venture Partners since 2002. It was supposed to cater to almost 100% gas demand of the province of KPK. Areas under exploration of the ministry of oil and gas include districts Kohat, Karak, Hangu of KPK and some areas of North Waziristan and Orakzai agencies of FATA, spanning over 4600 square kilometers. MOL Pakistan owns 10.5264% exploration & 8.4210% production phase working interests as an operator of TAL block and has six successive discoveries to its credit. The first discovery was made at Manzalai-1 exploratory well in December 2002 whereas the second discovery was at Makori1 exploratory well in January 2005. However, a delegation of 28 notables from TAL area revealed before the journalists that neither they are given any gas for domestic consumption nor has their area been developed. With no educational facilities, safe drinking water, power, dilapidated roads, and utter backwardness, people feel agitated, the head of delegation Saba Khan told the reporters. In the presence of Senator Nabi Bangash, Saba Khan said that if conditions were not improved they will boycott the upcoming elections, bomb the gas and oil installations and pipelines and block all the roads leading to their area. Endorsing the delegation from his home town, Senator Bangash said that “these people are being forced to resort to open mutiny by the continued ignorance of the state institutions and political governments.” Accusing the former prime minister Raja Pervaiz Ashraf of diverting the already announced development funds of over Rs. 900 million to his native constituency in Gujar Khan, the Senator revealed that Raja Pervaiz Asharf spent over Rs 48 billion in just a few months in his constituency but completely ignored the allocation done by his predecessor Yusuf Raza Gilani for TAL area. “Baluchs were forced to take up guns against the state after similar injustices and if people from TAL are not given their due rights, insurgency is sure to take place in these sensitive areas,” he said affirmatively when asked.
News: 5 Killed in bomb blast near #MQM Election office in Nusrat Bhutto Colony, #Karachi #MQM Wont Surrender
Shayan Ali Tejani @ShayanTejani3m
Strongly condemn TTP's attack on MQM office. But what's the point of closing down the whole city? Terrible. #Karachi
D M∆ ™ @DeeMan_LFC42s
#Karachi The only city where the weekend is for 4 days!!
And it's going to be yet another 'youm-e-soug' tomorrow #Karachi
What's the point in calling Youm-e-Sog for a day after each incident. If they r serious to protect ppl, must demand to call Army in #Karachi
Imran Khan @ImranKhanPTI2h
Politically clued in crowd!R message of change has reached every Pakistani!More than 120K inside stadium;30K outside!
Asma Chaudhry @AasmaChaudhry24 Apr
at local bank got family friend retired army officer depositing (probably his pension income) in #PTI election fund,inspiring passion #e2013
Danish Jamil @danishjamil1m
Cant you guys condemn bomb blasts in #karachi @Asad_Umar ? never heard one word of condolence from #PTI for killings of #MQM workers
25 April 1991: How times have changed. These days Imran Khan and Nawaz Sharif are as friendly as water and fire. The picture shows, from left, Governor Punjab Mian Azhar, Prime Minister Mian Muhammad Nawaz Sharif, Imran Khan and his father Ikramullah Khan Niazi. The occasion is the laying of the first stone of Shaukat Khanum Memorial Cancer Hospital and Reasearch Center (SKMCH&RC), a passion project of Khan, which is now a world class institution. Exactly 22 years later Khan and Sharif are locked in an electoral battle that is poised to go down as a fight between their respective parties, Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf (PTI) and Pakistan Muslim League Nawaz (PML-N). The war of words they are currently engaged in seems a world apart from this picture. Sharif is looking at Imran in a somewhat tender, loving manner. It is almost as if he adores him, and he had little reason not to, considering Khan was the captain of the Pakistan Cricket Team as well as the hearts and minds of the whole nation. Khan, on the other hand, is not looking at the then Prime Minister but is speaking to him in a respectful and somewhat excited manner, which was again expected since Sharif was the head of state. The relationship, or what one can see of it on paper, seems a healthy one. One wonders what fruit could possibly be borne if such a relationship existed between the leaders of the two frontrunners in the next elections. It will probably only be a thing of imagination since it is highly unlikely that the two men will ever see eye to eye again.
Massive #PTI vehari jalsa. Is this the same vehari #PMLN keep claiming they've modernised & overhauled its infrastructure. Lol
Umar Cheema @UmarCheema12h
While in power, #PPP, #ANP & #MQM formed no counter-terrorism policy to contain militancy. Now they're unable to run campaign. As you sow...
Raja Pervaiz Ashraf @PM_RajaPervaiz41m
A delegation of #PPP leaders called on CM Sindh and asked him to provide full protection to candidates contesting elections #E2013
Beautiful Monal built on corrupt foundations by CDA SALMAN ABBAS
pointing out many irregularities in mega ventures of the Capital Development Authority (CDA), the report of judicial commission formed by the Islamabad High Court (IHC) to probe CDA malpractices makes it evident that the unjust favor given to a specific party by the then Chairman CDA Kamran Lashari for construction of Monal Restaurant on the top of Maragalla Hills caused a huge loss to the national exchequer. The judicial commission, in its report, revealed that the construction of Monal Restaurant in the lush green Maragalla Hills a couple of years ago was started without calling tenders or fulfilling other codal formalities. Huge embezzlement is alleged in completion
of the project and the said project was conceived by the then chairman CDA who is, along with other signatories of the project, held responsible for grave violation of rules and laws. Off the record conversation with some senior CDA officials revealed that a senior bureaucrat Kamran Lashari was considered to be the main responsible behind grave violations of rules and regulations during the construction of Monal Restaurant. “But the notable thing was that no one ever tried to hold the powerful bureaucrat responsible for his alleged role in the whole episode,” said the source. They said that Lashari was the person who ignored gross violations in the multi million project of Monal Restaurant. The report disclosed that the first PC1 of the project was prepared in July,
2004 for Rs 39.624 million while the only subsequent and last PC-1 was prepared in August 2006 for Rs 105.331 million. During the intervening period the revised estimates used to be prepared and sanctioned without the preparation and sanction of revised PCs-1 despite the fact that each revised estimates involved considerably large amounts, thereby causing huge loss to government exchequer. It said that after completion the project was leased out without completing formalities. The restaurant was leased out to Ze-grill. The report showed that the party was paying only 260,000 Rs. monthly lease of the restaurant despite being on an ideal location and having a large number of customers. The commission recommended that the amount of lease should be enhanced in the next period of lease. It pointed out that the incumbent of the lease constructed shops, kiosks, gazebos and tree house on the premises of the restaurant in an illegal manner and directed the CDA to take control of the said structures. The commission pointed out that the then chairman and all the signatories to all the revised estimates are held responsible for grave violations of rules and procedures and strict disciplinary action against them is strongly recommended for bringing huge monetary loss to exchequer. Kamran Lashari was the chairman CDA at that time. The report said that the tenders were not called through notices in the newspapers for the project which ultimately turned out to be of considerable value and volume, adding that the notices inviting tenders
through national dailies have been avoided on the basis of an in-genuine reason of “urgency involved”, whereas the construction of a restaurant on a hilltop was not at all an urgent matter justifying the bypassing of normal routine and violating of PPRA rules. It revealed that tenders from otherwise prequalified firms were invited without
allocation of funds or prior approval of finance wing. The report prepared by commission said that the tenders for the Rs105.3 million project were not called through advertisement but were invited from the firms already pre-qualified by the CDA. Being the lowest one, the contract was awarded to M/s Arif
Enterpirses. However, the CDA officials alleged that the top bosses of CDA had extended the unjust favors to the firm for their vested interests and some serving CDA officials may also be found guilty in the scam if thorough inquiry recommended into the scam by high court is implemented.
FRIDAY, APRIL 26, 2013
Three-day Jashne-Baharan kicks oďŹ€ at Arts Council RAWALPINDI: A three-day JashneBaharan festival kicked off at the Rawalpindi Arts Council on Thursday. The festival has started today under the auspices of Rawalpindi Arts Council in collaboration with Artistsâ€™ Welfare Organisation. The festival is continued from April 26 to 28 which can be visited at the RAC. There will be folk music, folk dances, magic and puppet show, traditional foods besides stalls of prominent artisans of the region. PR
No running away from cases, says Musharraf ISLAMABAD: The chief of All Pakistan Muslim League, Pervez Musharraf has said that he will not pursue the path of escape and will face all the cases registered against him. He expressed these views during a meeting with his party leaders in the farmhouse subfail here on Thursday. During the meeting, former president Pervez Musharraf said that his party would participate in the upcoming general election at every cost. Talking about the coming polls, the APML chief said that his party would contest the coming election and would face the opponents valiantly. The farmhouse of former president General
(retd) Pervez Musharraf in Chak Shahzad was declared sub-jail. A notification in this regard was issued by Islamabad Chief Commissioner. The former president was shifted to his farmhouse where he is spending his 14-day judicial remand. An assistant superintendent jails has be deployed at the farmhouse where all rules of a jail are being applied. According to the rules, the former president is not allowed to hold any meeting without prior approval from the chief commissioner. However it could not be made ascertain whether Musharraf took the approval for his Thursdayâ€™s meeting or not.
The Anti-Terrorism Court had sent former president Musharraf on the judicial remand until May 4. Meanwhile, All Pakistan Muslim League (APML) leader Ashraf Gujar said that former president Pervez Musharraf â€™s party would not boycott elections. He said this while talking to media after meeting with Musharraf at his residence. APML Ghulam Mohiuddin was also present. He said the former president had directed him to fully participate in the elections. Ashraf said that Musharraf â€™s mother had asked his son for not coming to Dubai, adding she would come to Pakistan. ONLINE
Meeting at farmhouse.
ANF seizes 19.8 kg heroin at Lahore airport
Non-proliferation talks with Russia
RAWALPINDI: The Anti-Narcotics Force seized 19.8 kilogram heroin at the Allama Iqbal International Airport in Lahore. According to details, the ANF received the information that some international drug smugglers will try to smuggle heroin to Uganda through cargo from the airport. On receipt of information, the ANF intercepted a consignment of wooden boxes containing cartons of dinner sets booked for Uganda. During search 19.8 kilogram heroin was recovered. The heroin was very tactfully concealed in the packing material of water sets. The accused, namely Asif Iqbal, has been arrested. An FIR under the Control of Narcotics Substances Act-1997 has been registered. Further investigations are in progress. PR
Sindh govt convenes APC KARACHI: Interim Chief Minister Zahid Qurban Alavi said on Thursday that he had convened an all-party conference on April 30 to discuss security situation in the province ahead of the general elections. All political and religious parties will be invited, he added. According to sources, during the conference it is expected that a code of conduct will be discussed and finalized for the elections. The conference is also expected to take some important decisions regarding elections in Sindh province. ONLINE
Chaghi project employees protest for postings, salaries ISLAMABAD: Regularised employees of the Chaghi Project of the Ministry of National Food Security and Research Thursday demanded posting and joining orders with one year delayed salaries. A group of the employees has set up a protest camp here in front of the National Press Club and chanted slogans to draw attention of the authoritiesâ€™ concerned. Naseer Ahmed Baloch, one of the protesters, said that the ministry has regularised a large number of contract employees and often issued their joining orders but not a single employee from Balochistan received joining orders. He said that the ministry has been using delaying tactics in issuing the joining orders of the employees of the ministry from the Chaghi Project. ONLINE
LAHORE: Boys bathing in the River Ravi to get some respite from the hot weather. ONLINE
Contempt plea against Raja, Zardari put off for 3 weeks ISLAMABAD: The Supreme Court on Thursday adjourned for three weeks hearing of contempt of court case against President Asif Ali Zardari, former prime minister Raja Pervez Musharraf, Senator Rehman Malik, chief election commissioner and others. The president and former prime minister were issued contempt of court notices by the SC for not implementing courtâ€™s verdict in dual nationality case. A threemember bench of the SC presided over by Chief Justice Iftikhar Muhammad Chaudhry took up the case for hearing. The court maintained, â€œWe want to hear the case in details, therefore, the hearing is being adjourned for three weeks.â€? The contempt of court petition was filed by Mehmood Akhtar Naqvi. The Supreme Court issued
contempt of court notices to President Asif Ali Zardari and former prime minister Raja Pervaiz Ashraf on Wednesday for not implementing the courtâ€™s verdict in the case. Notices were also issued to Chief Election Commissioner Fakhruddin G
Ebrahimâ€š chairman Senateâ€š former interior minister Rehman Malik and the attorney general. Last month, the Supreme Court had ordered the Election Commission of Pakistan and courts across the country to â€˜ruthlessly scrutiniseâ€™ all election
contestants and also take action against former lawmakers with fake degrees and dual nationalities. The judiciary â€“ which had given the landmark judgment that any person having dual nationality cannot become a member of the parliament â€“ had also decided to look within its own institution for those possessing dual nationalities. Earlier, the Supreme Court had refused to delete the names of former parliamentarians holding dual nationality from disqualified members list and directed them to resort to respective forum. Moreover, the court instructed the ECP not to accept the nomination papers of the 189 lawmakers for the upcoming elections until the matter of their respective degrees was not resolved. ONLINE
ISLAMABAD: Pakistan and Russia Thursday reviewed developments in the area of international arms control, disarmament and non-proliferation of the weapons of mass destruction. Both the sides also discussed issues related to the maintenance of regional and strategic stability as well as relevant areas of cooperation in the bilateral domain and in the multilateral fora at eight meeting of the Pakistan-Russia Consultative Group on Strategic Stability held here. The Pakistan side was headed by Additional Foreign Affairs Secretary Aizaz Ahmad Chaudhry. Deputy Foreign Affairs Minister Sergey A Ryabkov led the Russian delegation. The talks were held in a cordial and friendly atmosphere, as the two sides found the talks useful. They reaffirmed their commitment to strengthen this consultation mechanism through regular exchanges which would contribute towards further promotion of a comprehensive partnership between Pakistan and Russia. Both the sides agreed to convene the next meeting of the Consultative Group in Moscow at mutually convenient dates. ONLINE
LHC orders action against 14 candidates LAHORE: The Lahore High Court on Thursday ordered action against 14 candidates in the Article 62 and Article 63 implementation case. Hearing the case, the full bench issued order in this regard and demanded record from the National Accountability Bureau and the Federal Bureau of Revenue regarding 1319 candidates who had moved appeals in the court. Besides NAB and FBR, the State Bank of Pakistan has also been issued notices for further proceeding. The court has made it clear in its order that main job of the Election Commission was not limited to the holding of the general elections; rather, it has to do a lot of things after the election. â€œIf anybody wants a medal in this regard, he would be bestowed with special award after the election,â€? the court said. On the other hand, the Election Commission is of the view that the election body was busy in making arrangements for holding of fair election. Such judgments tend to prove stumbling blocks in its way, it said. ONLINE
NEPRA favours blue-eyed firm SAHTAK BALOCH
FAISALABAD: City General Secretary of PMLN Women Wing, Saniya Butt recieving medical treatment after she sustained injuries in fifirring by unidentififieed persons. ONLINE
Weapons recovered SARGODHA: The security forces have recovered a huge quantity of weapons from a suspicious car during a routine checking, according to a statement issued by the Sargodha Police on Thursday. Police spokesperson Nabila Ghazanfar said that seven Kalashnikovs, seven 12-bore guns, 43 pistols and 6,000 bullets were found from the car. Initial investigations revealed that the weapons were being transported to Dera Ismail Khan. ONLINE
ISLAMABAD: The National Electric Power Regulatory Authority top brass has approved tariff of Rs 1.05 per unit as interim relief for Halmore Power Generation Company Ltd on account of capacity charge ostensibly in a dubious bid to favour the private power company owned by British sponsor of Pakistani origin Dr Mian Muhammad Sharif. Making a mockery of â€” and blatantly violating â€” the NEPRA Act and tariff rules, NEPRA members have approximately approved a Rs 30 billion benefit to Halmore by allowing Rs1.05/unit hike in the tariff as interim relief to the company. This interim relief approximately worth billions will be collected over the next 30 years from over-burdened power consumers already staggering under sky-high electricity rates. Member Tariff Khwaja Muhammad Naeem insisted the
authority approve the tariff as interim relief under the head of Capacity Charge, setting aside his legal advisor's opinion and despite the fact that there are Rs 7 billion worth of irregularities in claims mentioned in the invoices, challans, ledgers etc, which Halmore had earlier submitted to the authority. Documents with The Spokesman also showed that documentary evidence of such irregularities submitted by the company to the authority have now been declared fake. Earlier the company's tariff was set at 1.36/unit though with the Rs 1.05/unit raise in the tariff of the company has been jacked up to Rs 2.41/unit. The regulator had approved this tariff hike with 3-1 as NEPRA members Khwaja Muhammad Naeem, Habib Ullah Khilji and Haroon Rashid had submitted their consent to the raise to Halmore while a fourth member â€” who is also vice chairman of the authority â€” Shaukat
Ali Kundi submitted his note of dissent on this decision on lawful grounds that interim relief under the provisions of regulator's act and tariff rules cannot be given to operational plants. Halmore Power Generation Company Limited had set up a 225 MW dual-fuel (Natural Gas/High Speed Diesel) combined cycle thermal power project located at Bhikki, near Sheikhupura, in Punjab. The Bhikki Power Plant is located 70 KM west of Lahore near the town of Bhikki, approximately 16 km southwest of Sheikhupura city and 3 km northwest of the main Sheikhupura-Faisalabad Road alongside the famous QadirabadBalloki Link Canal. The Company was granted Generation License in July 2006 by the National Electric Power Regulatory Authority (NEPRA) for the Power Project while. Power Purchase Agreement was signed with NTDC on April 28, 2007 and financial close was KARACHI: The main b illboard at Peop leâ€™s Secretariat is lying broken for pa st ma ny achieved on April 30, 2008. d ays. ONLINE
LESCO flouts court orders as 18-hour outages continue
LAHORE: The woman who kidnapped a one-year-old baby boy from Ganga Ram LAHORE: A hospital worker with the baby boy who was recovered right after his kidnapping by a woman in a doctorâ€™s clothes. ONLINE Hospital is being taken to the police station. ONLINE
LAHORE: Traders, raising voice against unprecedented electricity breakdowns in the provincial capital, said that all power distribution companies in Punjab including the Lahore Electric Supply Company is flouting orders of the Lahore High Court. APAT Secretary General Naeem Mir questioned that 18-hour long loadshedding in a day by the LESCO speaks volumes of the corruption of the power companyâ€™s officials, despite the fact that the company was getting more than 66 percent of its demand. The court had ordered the company to cut loadshedding period to eight hours but it continued to carry electricity outages for more
than 18 hours, he said. He said that this practice amounted to electricity theft and to control the theft was the job of the DISCOS originally. The power thieves were getting electricity equal to honest consumers, he said, adding that all ministries concerned would have to sit together to end power crisis in the country. He said that the prevailing crisis was a result of poor policies. The trade leader urged the government to ensure equal supply of electricity throughout the country as the Punjab province was the worsthit by the electricity shortage and only last year it lost three percent of its GDP due to power crisis. ONLINe
FRIDAY, APRIL 26, 2013
Hydropower projects in AJK
FATA mineral resources
Governor for integrated, realistic approach PESHAWAR: Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Governor Engineer Shaukatullah has asked the concerned authorities to come out with an integrated and realistic approach to make the mineral resources of FATA beneficial to the respective people and the country too. While noting expeditious initiatives for internal roads and plots development at the Momand Marbal City Project; situated in the vicinity of WARSAK, the Governor further advised that concrete steps should be taken to establish grid station; ensure sufficient supply of water and development of sewerage and water treatment system at the project on priority basis.. He was presiding over a meeting to review the pace of progress on the ongoing projects for mineral development in FATA at Governor’s House, Peshawar on Thursday, which besides the Principal Secretary to the Governor, Mr. Muhammad Abid Majeed and the chief executive of FATA Development Authority Fida Muhammad Wazir, was also attended by the senior of officials of PASDEC. The governor particularly took note of the imported machinery, meant to help in scientific exploration of marbles resources which is presently impounded in a Ware House at Risalpur and observed that measures to delivery them to the lease holders in a transparent way should also be expedited. While taking keen interest in scientific exploitation of mineral wealth, especially the application of wire and chain cutting systems of marble deposits at the origins, the Governor said that both the province and FATA with internationally acclaimed almost 170 types of marbles indeed offer great opportunities for economic development and there is a need to expedite measures for making this possible. To reduce wastage of resources; enhance skill development; increase investment; improve production and boost economic life of the people should be the objective of every effort in this respect, he added. –ONLINE
Charity helps patients in AJK OUR STAFF REPORTER
MI RP UR (A JK): The Bismillah Charity Luton on Thursday formally launched an integrated programme of contribution of relief in different forms for the recovery of thalassaemia patients in Pakistan and Azad Kashmir. The charity donated 12 latest wheel chairs and medicines to the centre besides the gift packs to over 198 child patients given treatment in the centre. The Bismillah Charity is currently on a tour of various parts of Pakistan and AJK. It has planned holding mobile medical clinic besides dispensation of free medication, child patients sponsorship and medical assistance. Addressing the inaugural ceremony after donating wheel chairs, medicines and the financial relief for the thalassaemia centre in Mirpur DHQ Hospital, Dr Abdul Aziz Chishti said his organization inked an integrated phased program to donate to the AJK-based main thalassaemia centre in Mirpur for the recovery of the patients mostly children, facing a permanent treatment through frequent transfusion of blood in efforts to maintain their normal position. Highlighting the background of emergence of a registered The Bismillah Charity, its founder Dr Chishti stated that he inspired to jump into the relief works for the recovery of the ailing humanity since 2005 after his son Qazi Saraj-ul-Haq found suffering the disease.
Experts stress environmental assessment OUR STAFF REPORTER
EDUCATION OR TORTURE? A school girl shows her arm and face at the DHQ Hospital Faisalabad on Thursday after she was beaten up by a teacher. –ONLINE
Militants targeting their opponents: Hoti Says ANP leadership unable to be part of campaign because of threats OUR STAFF REPORTER
MARDAN: Former chief minister and ANP candidate for NA-9 (Mardan-I) and PK-23 (Mardan II) Amir Haider Khan Hoti on Thursday said that militants were targeting those parties in the election campaign who had been in forefront to resist their onslaught. He added that the militant wanted to stop them from reaching the Parliament and coming into a position of decision-making after the upcoming polls. Addressing a news conference at his residence, Hoti said the ANP candidates had been facing serious threats and repeatedly targeted. Answering a question about Khawaja Muhammad Khan Hoti’s allegations against him, he said all the candidates and leaders of political parties were respectable for him. “Levelling allegations is easy but proving them is a difficult task,” Hoti remarked. “Just 15 days ago, my opponent announced to defeat me and now they are talking about pre-poll rigging. In case there is any sign of pre-poll rigging, the Election Commission and other institutions should take action on the issue.” Hoti said he had no power and how can he pressurise the masses through administration. Former president Musharraf was more powerful ruler than him but his condition was now visible to everyone, he added. The ANP leader further said more than five years were required to solve the problem of loadshedding and those parties leaders, who had been promising to resolve the within days, were also now saying it would take more than two years. “After the 18th Amendment, the provincial government launched 24 hydro projects and work has already started on five of them, while feasibility study of others was also completed,” he added. He said
thousands of people including those having no affiliation with the ANP were meeting him at his residence and appreciating his developmental projects. Answering a question about the European Union delegation, he said that they discussed the problems faced by ANP. He added that he told the members of European Union delegation that the ANP candidates were serious threats, which restricted the election campaigning. They could not even arrange public meetings, while the party leadership was also unable to be part electioneering; therefore, they had been limited only to corner meetings and door-to-door campaign, Hoti elaborated his point. The former chief minister said he told the EU delegation that being a gross-root party, it was running the election campaign while using the union council-level organisation. Hoti said the time for alliance and seat adjustment had passed now and it was time to talk about postelection alliance. He opined three parties or two parties with the support of independents would form the next government, adding that the party with more than 30 seats would be the senior partner. Replying to the question about the role of Election Commission, he said that the Chief Election Commissioner was appointed in complete consensus between the government and the opposition and he had been playing a very active role.
Taliban, taboos bar millions of Pakistani women from voting MONITORING DESK
LAHORE: Next month's elections should mark the first democratic transition of power in Pakistan, but Taliban threats, social taboos and poor organisation will likely deprive millions of women their right to vote, reports France 24. Out of a population of 180 million, 37 million women and 48 million men are registered to vote in the May 11 polls in a country that has been ruled by generals for half its life and where military coups have repeatedly interrupted democracy. But in the conservative northwest Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province, adjoining tribal areas on the Afghan border and south-western province Baluchistan, few women voted at the last election and officials fear it will be the same again. "We waited the whole day... but not a single woman turned up because of a ban imposed by tribal elders," remembers Badama Begum, a 33year-old teacher who worked at a polling station in 2008 in Mardan. "We closed the polling station in the evening, returned the blank ballot papers and empty boxes to the election
commission, and left," she said. In 2008, not a single vote was cast at 564 of 28,800 women's polling stations -- 55 per cent of them in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, officials said. In the most conservative areas, officials estimated women's turnout at 10-15 percent of those registered. It is said at least 11 million eligible women will not be able to vote simply because authorities have not granted them national identity cards. The elections themselves present further barriers to women, with some religious leaders believing women voting is un-Islamic. Voting for a man they do not know, some mullahs counselled in 2008, was grounds for automatic divorce -- a social taboo few are prepared to entertain. "Our society does not allow us to bring our women to vote," said Sharif Khan, 50, a solar energy dealer in Miranshah. "We are afraid of the Taliban. They oppose women voting, so why should we take the risk?" he asked. In tribal communities such as these, women live in purdah, confined to women's only quarters at home. They do not go shopping, they do not work outside the house and they only go to
the hospital in a dire emergency. "Women in our area don't even know how to vote," said Miranshah cloth merchant Adam Khan, 35. "Our MPs do nothing for our welfare. So it's not just our women, I won't vote this time either," he fumed. In urban areas, politicians lay on transport to ferry voters to and from polling stations, but in the countryside it becomes more complicated when women are not allowed to travel without a close male relative. "Preventing a person from casting his vote falls in the purview of corrupt practices and is punishable by three years in jail and fine of rupees 5,000 ($50) or both," An Election Commission official said. Khalida Bibi a 39-year-old housewife from Dargai said that she was hopeful that a tough Election Commission would have some impact. "My name was on the voters' list for the 2002 and 2008 elections, but I couldn't vote because on both occasions local people decided that women would not," she said, adding, “I hope I will succeed this time because the election commission has warned against any ban on women voting."
Plot in work to postpone polls: JUI-F QUETTA: JUI-F Secretary General Maulana Abdul Ghafoor Haideri on Thursday said a plot was underway to create law and order problem in Karachi, Balochistan and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa in order to postpone the upcoming polls. Addressing a press conference, he said JUI-F would stay in the electoral race and foil every attempt that is aimed at delaying the elections. Haideri also blasted at the Election Commission of Pakistan, accusing it of full of controversies. He said the ECP was introducing new laws on each coming day which were against the constitution. He claimed that his party would win with overwhelming majority should polls were held in free, fair and transparent manner. –ONLINE
MIRPUR (A JK): Experts from various institutions besides nation-building environmentalists at a workshop strongly emphasised the adoption and implementation of the need of Strategic Environmental Assessment before launching hydropower projects in Azad Kashmir. “Requisite legislation for making the exercise of Strategic Environmental Assessment (SEA) before launching the study for construction of the hydropower projects in letter and spirit is primarily the need for implementation of the SEA in letter and spirit,” the experts suggested at the day-long workshop hosted by the AJK Environmental Protection Agency in collaboration with Islamabad-based Embassy of Netherland. Highlighting the salient features of the workshop, environmental expert from Netherland Dr David Annandale said that it was aimed at to raise awareness among the participants about the importance of the values of applying of SEA to the hydropower planning in AJK, deciding on its structure and commenting on a terms of reference for a study. “The event is also aimed at providing an opportunity to the participants to discuss and share ideas for ensuring complete protection to the natural environment during the course of the execution of development projects like those in hydropower sector in AJK,” he pointed out. Earlier in their addresses of welcome, EPA Director Dr Muhammad Aurangzeb and Mirpur Divisional Director Sardar Idrees Mehmood revealed that the National Impact Assessment Program (NIAP) was being implemented in various parts of Pakistan and AJK jointly by the Planning Commission and Ministry of Climate Change of the government of Pakistan, all the provincial governments as well as AJK and Gilgit/Baltistan governments, International Union for the Conservation of Nature and the
Environmental Protection Agencies, to contribute to sustainable development in Pakistan through strengthening of environmental impact assessment process and introducing strategic environmental assessment. They pointed out that the Environmental Impact Assessment had become a legal requirement in Pakistan for over two decades. “However, the Strategic Environmental Assessment (SEA) is somewhat new to the country,” they disclosed and added that the SEA, with broader scope, aims to integrate environmental consideration in to decision-making at policy, plan and programme levels. They further said SEA was complimenting the planning process with a systemic assessment of environmental consideration as well as identification of the inter-linkages with social and economic considerations, with potential deterrence against the environmental degradation. Environmental Protection Agency of the AJK government is one of the major stake holders of this project, they pointed out. The EPA’s top officials revealed that since the AJK government was in the process of carrying out a Pilot Strategic Environmental Assessment of its Hydropower Development plan under the National Impact Assessment Program, the Scoping and Consultative workshop for the Pilot SEA project will lead the participants to get in-depth know-how about the impacts of the execution of the development projects on the environment in case of their implementation without meeting prior needs to save the natural environment. Other speakers said since AJK was blessed with massive natural potential for generation of over 20 thousand megawatt of Hydro Power, the advent of the power projects keeping within all parameters including those designed for protection of environmen,t especially SEA, could bring about an economic revolution in the region besides meeting the local energy needs.
FRIDAY, APRIL 26, 2013
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Gaping holes in polls Information Secretary of Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf (PTI), Dr Shireen Mazari on Wednesday questioned the integrity of the Gallup Pakistan headed by Dr Ijaz Shafi Gilani. The survey showed PML-N’s support at 39 percent against PTI’s 7 percent. According to his profile published in the Pakistan Herald, Dr Ijaz Shafi Gilani served as advisor to the then prime minister Nawaz Sharif and chairman of the prime’s minister’s committee for research and analysis in 1991-1993. There are reasons to believe that public opinion polls are conducted by private and international organisations to influence public opinion rather than disseminate information about the public preference or public sentiment. For instance, in the run-up to the US presidential election in 2012, according to the Gallup survey, presidential candidate Mitt Romney was polled at 52 percent and Barack Obama at 45 percent. There was much hype about a neck to neck fight between the two presidential candidates, but the election results proved the Gallup survey wrong, and instead of 45 percent as revealed in the survey, Obama secured 50.9 percent votes. In 2012, President Obama won re-election with 50.9 percent of the popular vote and 332 Electoral College votes. He is the first Democratic president since Franklin Delano Roosevelt to win two terms with more than 50 percent of the total popular vote. It has to be mentioned that because of the high literacy rate in the US and western countries, the polls are conducted in a comparatively professional manner. Whereas in a developing country like Pakistan, pollsters are freer to employ various techniques to get the results they wish to; like taking a small and unrepresentative sample to represent more than 180 million people. There is also the propensity to doctor the results for vested interests. To conduct a comparatively reliable survey for determing the public mood on various national issues, the sample must include a cross-section of the country’s population, with a proportional number of voters from each province, the correct representation of rural and urban voters, and the representation of all income groups and age brackets. Polls aim to present opinions of a (usually unrepresentative) sample of people, as if everyone has been interviewed in a given country. Such surveys are based on interviews conducted by directory-assisted random-digit-dial. The Pakistani chapter of the Gallup poll is not taking into consideration the prerequisites of conducting a proper survey, and is inclined to take a small sample. The fact remains that accuracy improves with a large sample, while a small sample results in increasing the probability of error. Perhaps this is the reason that in the late 1980s the Gallup survey conducted by Dr Gilani had declared Jamat-e-Islami the most popular political party in Pakistan. Of course, Dr Gilani then had an affiliation with the Jamat-e-Islami. This indicates the possibility of polls to be fake, inaccurate and doctored. The Election Commission of Pakistan should direct the pollsters to stop their surveys, so that elections are held in an impartial manner. By publishing surveys and giving one party the edge over others is tantamount to influencing public opinion, because doctored surveys are quoted by the media without determining their accuracy to the detriment of the party which is shown to have less popularity.
Our sins of silence Pakistan is faced with a multitude of problems tearing apart the fabric of the State and society. Before understanding the dynamics of the present crises and working for their resolution, perhaps we should talk about our sins of the past TAHIR MALIK The all times grand warrior and monarch, Genghis Khan (1162-1227) once said, ‘I am the punishment of God. If you had not committed any great sin, God would not have sent a punishment like me upon you’. I consider the unconstitutional monarchs of Pakistan such as Governor-General Ghulam Muhammad, General Mohammad Ayub Khan, General Yahya Khan, General Zia-ul-Haq, and General Pervaiz Musharraf as punishments of God, too. Here’s a list of our sins for which we were punished. The first sin was committed by those Pakistanis who killed, looted, raped or kidnapped the non-Muslims migrating to India during the Partition. I don’t buy the argument that the same happened on the other side of the border. The next sin was committed in 1951, when the founder of Pakistan Mohammad Ali Jinnah's successor and Pakistan’s first Prime Minister Liaquat Ali Khan was assassinated. Over 60 years have passed by but the State and government institutions have failed to apprehend the assassin or unravel the mindset behind that incident. Yet, people have not questioned that. The all time greatest sin was committed when Governor General Ghulam Muhammed dismissed the Constituent Assembly of Pakistan in 1954. The Chief Justice of Sindh High Court declared his action ultra vires of the constitution. However, the then Chief Justice of Pakistan Muhammad Munir validated the order hiding behind the “Doctrine of Necessity” and dealt a death blow to the constitution. Where was the nation's collective conscience at that time? In 1956, the new constitution proclaimed Pakistan an “Islamic republic”. At that time, people forgot Jinnah’s Address to the Constituent Assembly of Pakistan on August 11, 1947: ‘If we want to make this, the State of Pakistan, happy and prosperous we should wholly and solely concentrate on the well-being of the people, and especially of the masses and the poor... you are free - you are free to go to your temples, mosques or any other place of worship in this State
of Pakistan. You may belong to any religion, caste or creed - that has nothing to do with the business of the state... in due course of time Hindus will cease to be Hindus and Muslims will cease to Muslims - not in a religious sense for that is the personal faith of an individual - but in a political sense as citizens of one state’. The first Martial law was declared and General Ayub Khan took over the country in 1958 and stabbed Pakistan's democracy in the back. Was it not a sin to let that happen? General Ayub Khan resigned in 1969 and General Yahya Khan took the reins of power into his hands in violation of the law. They dishonored the constitution but people observed silence.
Haq staged a military coup. People’s mandate was subverted but they remained silent. In 1978, General Zia introduced discriminatory laws in the name of Islam. A female witness was considered half of a male witness. In the eyes of Zia, the best place for women was at home. Women were forced to cover their heads on State television. Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto was hanged in 1979. One more massacre of people’s power, but Zia ruled over Pakistan for nine long years after Bhutto’s hanging. People remained silent over the acts of Zia. The US pledged military and economic assistance to Pakistan following the Soviet intervention in
In 1970, the victory of the Awami League in general elections proved its clear majority to rule over Pakistan. However, West Pakistan’s establishment refused to hand over power to the Awami League. The people remained silent In 1970, the victory of the Awami League in general elections in East Pakistan where it captured 158 National Assembly seats proved its clear majority to rule over Pakistan. However, West Pakistan’s establishment refused to hand over power to the Awami League. This act of injustice led to the division of Pakistan into two halves. However, the people of West Pakistan remained silent. In the so-called first democratic rule of Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto, the National Assembly passed the Second Amendment to the Constitution declaring the Qadianis non-Muslims. Many argued that Article 20 of Pakistan’s Constitution allowed everyone to profess religion of one’s choice and pointed out that the amendment ran contrary to it. Yet, people submitted to that decision. In 1977, riots erupted over the allegations of the rigging of elections by the Pakistan People’s Party (PPP) of Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto. General Zia ul-
Afghanistan in the 1980s. General Zia sold Jihad to Americans. However, the people accepted the Jihad waged by non-state actors financed by the CIA for the monetary gains of army’s generals. In 1986, Bhutto's daughter Benazir returned from exile. She was given the greatest welcome in Pakistan’s history but she served as prime minister under General Zia’s toadies who played a role to end the democratic rule and life of ZAB. People did not ask BB, why she did that? In 1990, 1993, 1996, and 1999, Benazir Bhutto and Nawaz Sharif were dismissed, each one of them twice, by the establishment. Was it not people’s right to elect or reject them? Pakistan conducted nuclear tests after India exploded its nuclear device in 1998. People did not ask the simple question: why were we not competing with India in education, health, human development and economic indicators? During the Kargil conflict, forces
backed by Pakistan clashed with the Indian military on the icy heights of Kargil in Indian-held Kashmir. Hundreds of soldiers of the Pak army sacrificed their lives. The nation did not ask the army chief why we fought and what we got out of it. In October 1999, General Musharraf seized power in a coup and Nawaz Sharif was sentenced to life imprisonment on hijacking and terrorism charges over his actions to prevent the 1999 coup. In December 2000, Nawaz Sharif went into exile in Saudi Arabia after being pardoned by the military authorities. In June 2001, General Musharraf designated himself as the president while retaining the title of the Chief of the Army Staff. President Musharraf secured another five years in office through a referendum in April 2002 which was criticised as unconstitutional and flawed. The people bought all that without raising any question. Our leading nuclear scientist Dr Abdul Qadeer Khan admitted in 2004 to having leaked nuclear secrets to Libya, North Korea and Iran. People remained silent on that revelation. In 2007, Musharraf won the sham presidential election but was challenged in the Supreme Court. He declared emergency, dismissed Chief Justice Iftikhar Chaudhry and appointed a new bench of the Supreme Court, which confirmed his re-election. He abrogated Pakistan’s constitution the second time but his rule continued. Benazir Bhutto was assassinated at a political rally in Rawalpindi. In 2008, her party won the election but did not apprehend her killers in five years. A campaign to reform Pakistan's blasphemy law led to the killing of its two prominent supporters, Punjab Governor Salman Taseer and Federal Minister for Minority Affairs Shahbaz Bhatti in 2011 but the PPP government did not penalise the killers. The founder of Al-Qaeda, Osama bin Laden, was killed by American special forces in Abbottabad but people did not know for how long he had managed to stay in Pakistan and where were our forces at the time of attack? To have tolerated the above said are our greatest sins. THE WRITER IS AN INDEPENDENT JOURNALIST BASED IN LAHORE
Perpetual war machine and emotions that fuel it NORMAN SOLOMON As a perpetual emotion machine producing and guzzling its own political fuel - the “war on terror” continues to normalise itself as a thoroughly American way of life and death. Ongoing warfare has become a matter of default routine, pushed along by mainline media and the leadership of both parties in Washington. Without a clear and effective upsurge of opposition from the grassroots, Americans can expect to remain citizens of a war-driven country for the rest of their lives. Across the United States, many thousands of peeling bumper stickers on the road say: “End this Endless War”. They got mass distribution from MoveOn.org back in 2007, when a Republican was in the White House. Now, a thorough search of the MoveOn website might leave the impression that endless war ended with the end of the George W. Bush presidency. MoveOn is very big as online groups go, but it is symptomatic of a widespread problem among an array of left-leaning organisations that have made their peace with the warfare state. Such silence assists the Obama administration as it makes the “war on terror” even more resolutely bipartisan and further embedded in the nation’s political structures -
The “war on terror” is now engaged in various forms of military intervention in an estimated two-dozen countries, killing uncounted civilians while creating new enemies. Without a clear and effective upsurge of opposition from the grassroots, Americans can expect to remain citizens of a war-driven country for the rest of their lives while doing immense damage to our economy, siphoning off resources that should go to meet human needs, further militarising society and undermining civil liberties. Now, on Capitol Hill, the most overt attempt to call a halt to the “war on terror” is coming from Rep. Barbara Lee, whose bill H.R. 198 would revoke the Authorisation for Use of Military Force that Congress approved three days after 9/11. Several months since it was introduced, H.R. 198 has only a dozen co-sponsors. Evidently, in Congress, there is sparse support for repealing the September 2001 blanket authorisation for war. Instead, there are growing calls for a larger blanket. Bipartisan Washington is warming to the idea that a new congressional resolution may be needed to give War on Terror 2.0 an expansive framework. Even for the law benders and breakers who manage the executive branch’s war machinery, the language of the September 2001 resolution doesn’t seem stretchable enough to cover the US warfare of impunity that’s underway across
deficit from the pockets of overseas student. It is a great injustice that the UK’s universities deliver low quality education and impart a compromised level of research to overseas Pakistani students even after being paid in full. Andrew Denholm, the education correspondent for the Herald perhaps did not know that he was revealing the truth innocently. It is disheartening to know that in the bylaws of the UK’s universities, the word “shall” has been replaced with the words “will” and “should”. It clearly shows that the UK’s A very foreign education universities have been trying to avoid their accountability. I also agree with the writer that there is a I am astonished to find the other direct relationship between the side of realities mentioned in a existence of legal lacunas in the column “A Very Foreign Education’ published in your daily on April 22. I bylaws and the quality delivered by the UK’s universities. If the right of had thought that seeking education lodging a complaint is denied to a in the UK was a smooth business. I student, how can any university did not know that the UK’s claim its high quality (academic and universities were also out to fleece research) standard? I intended to go overseas students in the name of to the UK for an MPhil degree in dispensing higher education and Engineering but I will now think that the UK’s universities were again about that. I also think that trying to make up their financial
the globe . . . with more on the drawing boards. On Tuesday afternoon, when a Senate Judiciary subcommittee held a hearing on “targeted killing”, the proceedings underscored the great extent of bipartisan overlap for common killing ground. Republican super-hawk Sen. Lindsey Graham lauded President Obama for ‘targeting people in a very commander-in-chief-like way’. And what passed for senatorial criticism took as a given the need for continuing drone strikes. In the words of the subcommittee’s chairman, Sen. Dick Durbin, ‘More transparency is needed to maintain the support of the American people and the international community’ for those attacks. This is classic tinkering with war machinery. During the first several years of the Vietnam War, very few senators went beyond mild kibitzing about how the war could be better waged. In recent years, during President Obama’s escalation of the war in Afghanistan that tripled the US troop levels in that country, senators like John Kerry (now secretary of
Pakistani students should explore higher education and research opportunities in other countries of the world. Why to become cash cows in the hands of the UK’s universities? I still wonder why the Higher Education Commission of Pakistan is silent in this regard. IRFAN HASSAN ISLAMABAD
Pakistan and opportunists After the demise of Mohammad Ali Jinnah and Liaqat Ali Khan, the leaders of the freedom movement were made redundant and a new situation emerged in which opportunists took over the control over power. The conflict from the central government and provincial centers descended on local areas and consequently the stunned nation suffered in all spheres. Citizens couldn’t believe that Pakistan was created to be a country in turmoil and the citizens will become bystanders to
state) kept offering their helpful hints for how to fine tune the war effort. The “war on terror” is now engaged in various forms of military intervention in an estimated two-dozen countries, killing and maiming uncounted civilians while creating new enemies. It infuses foreign policy with unhinged messages hidden in plain sight, like a purloined letter proclaiming “What goes around won’t come around” and telling the world “Do as we say, not as we do”. Political ripple effects from the Boston Marathon bombings have only begun. While public opinion hasn’t gotten carried away with fear, much of the news media - television in particular - is stoking the fires of fear but scarcely raising a single question that might challenge the basic assumptions of a forever “war on terror”. After a city has been traumatised and a country has empathised, a constructive takeaway would be that it’s terribly wrong to set off bombs that kill and maim. But that outlook is a nonstarter the moment it might be
see the slow poisoning of this Allah’s benevolence gift called Pakistan. A constitution was made in 1956 after 9 years of Pakistan’s formation but within two years it was abrogated. The C-in-C of the Army was made Defense Minister. The major disaster occurred in 1958 when we sold our souls to America and the Army. We became a dictatorship in uniform, (earlier it was a political dictatorship in civvies). The nation was fooled into believing that with American help Pakistan could become an Asian economic power. General Ayub Khan gave us the gift of Indus Basin treaty, EBDO, a new regimental constitution, 1965 war, Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto and Yahya Khan. Ayub Khan, his Secretary General of Convention Muslim League Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto and many other people managed to defeat Madar-e-Millat (Mother of nation) the sister of father of the nation in a Presidential election. This was the last nail in the coffin of East Pakistan. The Agartala conspiracy was the ad hoc constitution of Bangladesh.
applied to victims of US drones and cruise missiles in Afghanistan, Pakistan, Yemen and elsewhere. The message seems to be that Americans should never be bombed but must keep bombing. The death of Richie Havens days ago is a loss and reminder. Each of us has only so many days ahead. We may as well live them with deeper meaning, for peace and social justice. To hear Havens performing the song “Lives in the Balance” written by another great musician, Jackson Browne, is to be awakened anew: I want to know who the men in the shadows are I want to hear somebody asking them why They can be counted on to tell us who our enemies are But they’re never the ones to fight or to die And there are lives in the balance There are people under fire There are children at the cannons And there is blood on the wire
The citizens of the present day Pakistan submitted to that and easily tolerated that. In 1971, the Pakistan army surrendered and Pakistan was divided. Afterwards, a “new Pakistan” was promised and instead of taking any action against the architects of the defeat and surrender, they were given state funerals and medals of chivalry and service. The unity of the nation lay in tatters. The Roti, Kapra and Makan introduced a new culture of hypocrisy, deceit, and arrogance. Admittedly, both internationally and in the Islamic world, Pakistan attained a status of respect but this proved counter-productive in the end. Again a military coup took place and the era of extreme polarization, ethnic discontent and provincialism started. The discipline of the nation was shattered. The night of the terror started and if we call it the second darkest chapter in our history after surrendering East Pakistan it won’t be wrong. Now it was the turn of faith to become an enemy instead of salvation. General Zia ul Hab closed the doors to his
brand of Islam to many sects and the nation paid the price. He brought in a culture of subservience to the uniform, Kalashnikovs, drugs and hypocrisy. Baboos started praying without ablution, sycophancy rather than merit became the criteria of promotion, the East Punjab junta became his kitchen cabinet till Zia’s plane was blown up. After May 11 this year, a new era will start. I just want to mention a few points on behalf of poor citizens. Asif Ali Zardari, Nawaz Sharif, General Musharraf please give the details of the properties of yours and your partners/progeny not just in Pakistan but in UK, USA. France, Spain and elsewhere. Where did you and your children/wives get the cash from? In your bank accounts and of your families abroad, how much is stashed? Now is the time to ask and for you to answer to clear yourselves of any blame. AMIR-UD-DIN SHEIKH CAPT(R) Please email your letters to firstname.lastname@example.org or post them to our address in Islamabad.
FRIDAY, APRIL 26, 2013
‘Fight like hell for the living’ Those who died in West, Texas, were workers, volunteer first responders, retirees and neighbours. Unsafe workplaces cause injury and death on a daily basis in the US, but seem to be tolerated as simply the cost of doing business AMY GOODMAN
Fertilizer Co. never reported its ammonium nitrate to DHS. The concern with theft of The Boston Marathon bombing and ammonium nitrate by potential its aftermath has dominated the nation’s headlines. Yet, another series bombers is the basis for this reporting requirement. Numerous of explosions that happened two other federal and state agencies are days later and took four times the number of lives, has gotten a fraction supposed to regulate fertiliser plants, chemical storage facilities and of the coverage. It was the worst workplaces in general. Yet OSHA, industrial accident in years. But to call it an accident ignores that it was the Occupational Safety and Health preventable, and was quite possibly a Administration, last inspected the facility in 1985. An inspection report crime, as is common with so many filed with the Environmental dangerous workplaces. Protection Agency in June 2011 The first call came in to the 911 listed 54,000 pounds of anhydrous dispatcher at 7:29 p.m. on ammonia, a different fertiliser, but Wednesday, April 17. A woman at a claimed there was no serious hazard. playground noticed a fire across the The West Fertilizer explosion railroad tracks, at the West Fertilizer happened just a day after the 66th Co. facility, in the small town of anniversary of the Texas City West, Texas, near Waco. The local disaster, said to be the worst volunteer fire department was industrial accident in US history. mobilised. Less than 25 minutes later, a massive explosion leveled the Two thousand, three hundred tons of ammonium nitrate bound for plant, sending shock waves, debris France, as part of the Marshall Plan and fire across West, ultimately for European reconstruction and killing 15 people, among them a aid, caught fire aboard the ship, the local EMT, eight volunteer firefighters and a Dallas fire captain SS Grandcamp. The explosion that followed killed at least 581 people, who was visiting his sons and wounded 5,000 and destroyed 500 joined the firefighting effort. The call came over the emergency homes. You would think Texas would be sensitive to the potential radio system: ‘We need every ambulance we can get at this point. hazards of this dangerous chemical. Yet Gov. Rick Perry told The A bomb just went off inside here. Associated Press, ‘Through their It’s pretty bad. We’ve got a lot of elected officials [people] clearly firemen down’. send the message of their comfort Another call followed, with with the amount of oversight’. He moaning in the background: ‘The recently touted the lax regulatory rest home has been seriously environment in Texas while trying damaged. We have many people to lure businesses there from states down. Please respond’. like California and Illinois. A mushroom cloud climbed April 28 is Workers’ Memorial Day, high into the sky. The explosion registered 2.1 on the Richter scale, commemorating the 4,500 workers who die on the job annually in the the same as a small earthquake. US. Thirteen workers, on average, go 911 calls flooded in, with people to work each day and never come reporting a bomb, many injured home. Tom O’Connor, executive and others engulfed in a toxic director of National Council for cloud. Sixty to 80 houses were Occupational Safety and Health, leveled. said, ‘As companies decry regulations One week later, the fires are out, most of the funerals have been held, and emphasise profits over safety, workers pay the ultimate price’. but major questions remain Those who died in West, Texas, unanswered. A team of up to 70 investigators is probing the source of were workers, volunteer first responders, retirees and neighbors. the explosion. Reuters reported last Unsafe workplaces cause injury and Saturday that the plant had on site death on a daily basis in this country, 2,700 tons of ammonium nitrate. but seem to be tolerated as simply This is 1,350 times the amount that would require a facility to self-report the cost of doing business. Gov. Perry declared West a disaster area and its stockpile to the Department of asked for prayers. But that’s not Homeland Security (DHS). enough. As legendary labor Ammonium nitrate is a fertiliser organiser Mother Jones said, “Pray used in industrial farming for the dead, and fight like hell for worldwide, and is stable when the living." properly stored. It can be highly explosive when ignited, especially when mixed with fuel, as Timothy Denis Moynihan contributed McVeigh demonstrated with the research to this column. 1995 bombing of the Murrah Federal Building in Oklahoma City. West (COMMONDREAMS.ORG)
The mechanics of reinforcing prejudices When I saw the picture of Malala Yousafzai on the cover of Time, I thought it was a blessing since her face represents a side of Islam we hardly ever see. Yet, this image also confirms the old prejudice that Islam is a violent male dominated force
GERALD VAN WILGEN
an example: Say I am walking on the street. I see a young woman driving her car through a red light. I think The day after two bombs went off in nothing of it. A moment later another Boston, I was talking to my friend young woman does the same thing. Nicolette, who is also Dutch, about Now I think, ‘Hey, that's interesting’. A our own Islamophobia. She has a degree in Arabic languages from the third one will confirm my growing presumption that all young women University of Amsterdam and is ignore traffic lights, and if it happens a married to an Egyptian Muslim. fourth time, the deal is sealed. There They have two children and are are millions of young female drivers living outside New York City. who obey the rules, but if the four who Nicolette told me that at certain don't are the ones I see, I automatically unexpected moments, Islamophobia reach the conclusion that all young can flare up like a smouldering forest women ignore traffic lights. fire does. It happened to her recently, As this example shows, it doesn't while she was on a bus in Manhattan. take much to solidify these so-called An Arabic-looking man in traditional truths. Name a group, and there are clothing entered the bus carrying a prejudices against them, overweight huge bag. He had such an angry face people, geeks, old people, blondes, rich that the thought flashed through her people, men with mullets, you can add mind that he might be a terrorist. She laughed apologetically. ‘It's ridiculous’, your own categories. The prejudice against me, as an she explained, ‘I should know better, individual, that hurt the most was that but the news media is so invasive, you people in my neighborhood thought I almost can't help it’. was a “kept man”, a derogatory way of The security camera pictures of the saying that I, a stay at home dad, Tsarnaev brothers, walking with their backpacks on, are now engraved in our writer, and theatre artist, didn't really belong to the order of working collective unconscious. Although I suburban men. When someone said hope not to, I will probably give innocent young men who happen to be that to my face, I was stunned; now I am a little older and proud to be who I wearing a baseball cap and carrying a am, regardless of what people want to heavy backpack some extra attention believe I am or call me. at public events, train stations, and The big question now is: How do airports, just like the man on the bus got the attention of my friend because you eliminate or correct prejudices? How many “good” young female he looked “Arab”. drivers do I need to witness before I I don’t want to condone profiling, am physically able to adjust my but I do understand the mechanics of calcified opinion? it. I have the tendency to make If one pair of brothers, one of whom assumptions myself. Let me give you
was dismissed from his Mosque, is able to smear an entire group of Muslims from all over the world, how do you achieve the reverse? When I saw the picture of Malala Yousafzai, a 15-year-old Pakistani girl from the Swat valley with bright grey eyes wearing a duppata, on the cover of Time this week, I thought it was a blessing. She is, according to Time, one of the 100 most influential people in the world. Malala was shot by the Taliban on her way to school because the Taliban doesn't want women to go to school. I thought this cover was a blessing because her face represents a side of Islam we like to see, but hardly ever do. On second thought I realised that this image also confirms the old prejudice that Islam is a violent male dominated force where there is no place for women. By placing her on the cover Time contextualises the Taliban. In other words, wherever you see her, you will be aware of her circumstances. The reason for her iconic status is a result of her dire circumstances. What bothered Nicolette most was that people in the West have no idea how diverse a country like Egypt is. Some Egyptians enjoy a western life style while others are more traditional. There are many different economic strata, regions, sects, and dialects, just like with any other country in the world. I believe that we feel entitled to categorise the whole world and, in doing so, skim over 99.9% of the people just to make a quick assessment, just like I mistakenly
categorised young female drivers. When I was in Pakistan in 1988 I behaved fairly well, considering I was a young man. I do, however, have one regret. Every time I walked down the streets of Lahore, Multan, Hyderabad, or Karachi, people approached me constantly. What is your name? To which country do you belong? Are you married? Sometimes people asked me to find them a wife, a business opportunity, or they wanted me to take a picture of them. One day, I must have been tired or in a bad mood, a man with a dark blue windbreaker tapped me on my shoulder and asked the same question all the others had. I snapped at him, told him to go away, and walked away, leaving him behind, confused. I still feel bad when I think about that. In retrospect, I realise that what that man did to me is exactly what people should do if they feel uncomfortable with someone or are faced with someone unfamiliar or foreign - be it someone who steps into a bus with a heavy bag, or a kid with a heavy backpack. Don't be afraid to be annoying. Hi, what's your name? Where are you from? How is your day? In the video of the two brothers with their backpacks, nobody even sees them walk by. Many terror-inducing individuals have in common that they are lonely. How hard can it be to rectify this? Hi, how are you doing? GERALD VAN WILGEN IS A DUTCH WRITER WHO LIVES AND WORKS IN THE
Perspectives on water management in Punjab IMDAD HUSSAIN Arif Hasan, renowned architect, urban planner and chairman of Orangi Pilot Project (OPP), contends that public policies work if they are built on relevant trends. He suggests developing public policies on the basis of relevant trends and not on the basis of existing conditions. In his view, public policies are drafted in Pakistan on the basis of conditions. Conditions, according to Arif Hasan, mean existing state of something while trend means change in that something. Taking a clue from Arif Hasan, I think it is important to think about how things are changing. Developing policies on the basis of conditions means responding to what things are rather than how they change. The conditions are also important criteria in policy analysis in Pakistan as the success of the policies is determined by the degree to which they respond to the conditions they target: If a given policy, depending on its context, ameliorates the conditions or creates the conditions, it is considered successful. The trends approach suggests that the worth of the policies should be determined by their ability to respond not to the existing conditions of something but to the change in something over a period of time. A range of social, economic and demographic trends is relevant to public policies. Extending Arif Hasan’s idea, I have reviewed demographic, climatic, economic and cultural trends and tried to describe their relevance to the Punjab Drinking Water Policy (PDWP). Demography is important for public policy but more important for water policy. The demographic trends in fertility, age structure and migration are sensitive to the drinking water and water policies. Among demographic trends, the changes in household size and growth are very important for water policy. Analyses reveals that the cumulative growth in households is more than the cumulative
It is important to think about how things are changing. Developing policies on the basis of conditions means responding to what things are rather than how they change. A range of changing social, economic and demographic trends is therefore relevant to public policies growth in population in Pakistan. It means that the trend for smaller households is increasing across Pakistan. Between 1998 and 2012, households in Punjab have grown by 32%. The problem is that the smaller households use more water than larger households. The household growth has other policy implications, too: first, the construction of new households requires construction material; second, new households will need more water connections, which mean expansion of infrastructure will be necessary. Since young people are leading growth in households, consequently, more water will be needed as the young people consume more water than the children and the elders. Another demographic trend relates to the rising urbanisation, which increases the demand of water. Climate change is also important for PDWP. Climate change means long-term, enduring change in average temperature. It is difficult to envisage various impacts of the climate change. But floods, rise in the temperature and changing patterns of rains indicate climate change. Climate change and drinking water are pervasive, related to everyone, everyday. This reason makes their relationship important. According to Dragoni and Sukhija, hydrological cycle is changing due to rise in global temperature. The changing cycle is stepping up rainfall and floods. They say climate change shapes recharging of ground water and its quality. Climate change affects water resources consequently influencing societies by means of floods, droughts and waterborne diseases. Moreover, it adversely affects the poor more than its affects the middle class and rich people.
The Inter-Governmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) simulations tell that water vapour concentration and precipitation are expected to rise from 5% to 20%, which means water resources would be affected adversely. The changing patterns of rainfall and the withdrawing of Himalayan Glaciers have also affected the amount of available drinking water. A 1°C temperature rise will increase the speed of melting of Glaciers. In addition to affect the amount and cleanliness of water, climate change may also increase infectious and waterborne diseases. What is worrying is that the climate change is causing the emergence of urban epidemics. Variations in temperature change the rates of water borne diseases. In Anatol Lieven’s words, ‘of all the countries in the world that are acutely threatened by climate change, Pakistan will be one of the most important’. This is scary. Privatisation of water is important for PDWP. The role of the private sector is expanding in drinking water in Punjab and this is due to many factors. The most important factor is the inability of the provincial government to refine its water supplies for human consumption. Moreover, the onset of neoliberal market economy is also stimulating private sector in drinking water. The people in major cities are turning away from tap water for drinking. As a result, private drinking water companies are growing. A 19 liters bottle costs Rs 50 to Rs 80 and has 50-60 glasses of water depending on the size of the glass. A family of six may consume a 19 liters bottle in two days. It means an average household might need 20 bottles of 19 liters per month worth Rs 1,000 to Rs 1,200. Considering the increasing poverty, it might
get difficult for most of the households to afford private drinking water. Even buying 5 liters bottle can be expensive for them. Besides, the resistance to increased water tariffs is strong in the province. Politicians find increasing water tariffs unpopular and the provincial government can’t provide free and safe drinking water to all. The expansion of private drinking water has serious implications for equity and inclusion (E&I). The water needs of the people can’t be satisfied with bottled water. The only way to provide universal access to the drinking water is to make sure the availability of safe water. An elaborate regulatory mechanism doesn’t exist for private sector drinking water. In addition, no comprehensive mechanism exists to control the private extraction of water and its implications for communities. Culture is relevant to the PDWP. A number of works in the last two decades have pointed to the role of a culture for development. Water related cultural practices are important. However, they have been least studied. If we take culture for lifestyle, it is surely changing. Using large quantities of water is becoming acceptable: people wash cars and homes, sprinkle water in streets, and hardly repair water pipe leaks, letting their taps run and consequently extracting huge quantities of water blocking others access to it. People use huge amount of water for shaving, brushing their teeth, washing their bodies, and watering their gardens. This all tells that cultural values are changing without favouring environment. Conservation of drinking water and water ethics which were helpful for conserving drinking water are declining and becoming irrelevant to society.
The Equity and Inclusion (E&I) concept is a combination of two value based concepts and practices which are closely related. Equity means fairness, inclusion means participation. As a perspective, E&I being important in public policy, has prescriptions. It suggests: i) development should be designed for those who need it; ii) the target groups should have a say in conceiving and implementing that development. In short, The E&I perspective suggests adopting the principle of fairness in development planning and spending. The E&I has implications for drinking water. Water is commonly available resource but since it is scarce, many people do not have access to it. Since people can extract water through hand pumps and wells, it may be difficult to think about exclusion from drinking water. It is also difficult to think that some of the government decisions regarding water may exclude some groups such as religious minority groups and gypsies from accessing safe water supplies. Both of the perspectives, trends and E&I, can be merged for policy analysis. The trends demographic, climatic, privatisation, and culture - are interrelated. Water policy’s responsiveness to these trends is a measure of its appropriateness. Following the framework developed here, it can be claimed that water policy is good if it responds to the relevant trends in equitable and inclusive manner. The E&I approach suggests allocating resources and values where they are needed and to include voice of people in public policy. THE WRITER IS ASSISTANT PROFESSOR AT FORMAN CHRISTIAN COLLEGE, LAHORE
FRIDAY, APRIL 26, 2013
SE Asia reaching out to China on sea disputes
Maliki warns against sectarian strife in Iraq BAGHDAD: Iraqi President Nuri al-Maliki called for dialogue and resolve to halt the recent rise in violence across the country and avert a "civil war." "We should not let those extremists ignite the sectarian strife in this country," he said Thursday in a nationwide address. Over the past three days, nearly 100 people have been killed and hundreds of others wounded in clashes between Iraqi security forces and Sunni tribes in northern Iraqi provinces, including Salaheddin, Nineveh and Kirkuk. –AGENCIES
BAN DAR SERI BEGAWAN : Southeast Asian nations stepped up efforts on Thursday to engage China in talks to resolve maritime tensions, agreeing to meet to try to reach common ground on disputed areas of the South China Sea ahead of planned discussions in Beijing later this year. Efforts by ASEAN to craft a code of conduct to manage South China Sea tensions all but collapsed last year at a summit chaired byCambodia, a close economic ally of China, when
the group failed to issue a closing statement for the first time. Cambodia was accused of trying to keep the issue off the agenda despite a surge in tension over disputed areas and growing concern about China's assertive stance in enforcing its claims over a vast, potentially energy-rich sea area. Thursday's initiative came as the 10member Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) tried to patch up differences that shook the group last year, but struggled to make progress on
a group and we come with one common position," he said, adding that the next move would be to get China to participate in the negotiations. China claims almost the entire South China Sea as its territory, setting it directly against US allies Vietnam and the Philippines, while Brunei, Taiwan and Malaysia also claim parts. China insists on resolving sovereignty disputes on a bilateral basis. It has flexed its growing "blue water" naval muscle by occupying
long-held plans to agree on a disputemanagement mechanism. Thailand, which has the role of ASEAN coordinator with China, called for the talks ahead of an ASEAN-China meeting expected in August to commemorate 10 years since they formed a "strategic partnership". ASEAN Secretary-General Le Luong Minh told reporters that ASEAN would approach China with a common stance. "When we come to our partners to discuss important issues, we come as
Troops capture key town near Damascus
Gitmo Bay hunger strike involves 94 detainees WASHINGTON: The number of Guantanamo Bay detainees officially recognized as hunger strikers by the military rose to 94 on Thursday, a spokesman said Thursday. Seventeen of the detainees are being force-fed and three of them are in the hospital with non-life threatening conditions, the spokesman said. Lt. Col. Sam House also said that no detainees had tried to commit suicide since April 14, the day after guards raided Guantanamo's Camp Six and forced detainees who had been living in a communal environment back into their individual cells. There were two suicide attempts over a two-day period earlier this month. The number of recognized hunger strikers has more than doubled since the raid, as the military had previously only recognized 43 detainees as hunger strikers. –AGENCIES
MELBOURNE: People attend the service marking the Anzac Day at the Shrine of Remembrance in Melbourne. Anzac Day is a national day of remembrance in Australia and New Zealand, originally to honour the members of the Australian and New Zealand Army Corps (ANZAC) who fought at Gallipoli during World War I and now more to commemorate all those who served and died in military operations for their countries. –WIRE SERIVCE
PKK formally announces withdrawal from Turkey ANKARA: The outlawed Kurdish Workers' Party's (PKK) armed wing announced Thursday that all the militants of the group would withdraw from Turkish soil from May 8. The announcement was made by Murat Karayilan, head of the PKK armed wing based in the Kandil Mountains in northern Iraq. The PKK, listed as a terrorist organization by Turkey, the European Union and the United States, says it has half of its 7, 000 terrorists in Turkey and the other half in northern Iraq. It has been in talks with Ankara for months to negotiate a withdrawal. –AGENCIES
Uganda sets June as deadline for Congo talks KAMPALA: The Ugandan government on Wednesday set June as the deadline of the ongoing talks between the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) government and M23 rebels. Okello Oryem, Uganda's minister of state for international affairs, told reporters here that by early or mid June the conflicting parties must have come out with a peace agreement. "The negotiation and dialogue is going on progressively and we have decided that it needs a cutoff point, because you cannot have a dialogue that continues for ever. We hope that this dialogue between the two protagonists will be finished by June," he said. Uganda chairs the International Conference on Great Lakes Region (ICGLR), a 11 member state regional organization under whose auspice the talks are being mediated. –AGENCIES
some areas claimed by Vietnam and the Philippines, leading to a rise in tension. Without mentioning Cambodia, Philippine President Benigno Aquino drew a strong contrast with last year's discussions. He described as "beautiful" the fact that Brunei had brought up the South China Sea issue as the first subject. "We should really be thankful that the whole of ASEAN is willing to discuss this instead of putting it on the back burner," Aquino told reporters. –AGENCIES
Toll tops 220
Many trapped in B’desh building rubble SAVAR: Survivors from a garment factory that collapsed in Bangladesh killing at least 228 people described on Thursday a deafening bang and tremors before the eight-floor building crashed down under them. Many more of the mostly female workers were still feared trapped in the rubble more than 24 hours after the disaster, which has brought renewed attention to Western firms who use Bangladesh as a source of low cost goods. In the evening, local residents were still pulling survivors and bodies from the wreckage of the Rana Plaza building in the commercial suburb of Savar, 30 km (20 miles) outside the capital Dhaka, using crowbars and their bare hands in sweltering heat. More than 1,000 people were injured. "I thought there was an earthquake," said Shirin Akhter, 22, who was starting her day at the New Wave Style workshop six floors up when the complex crumbled. Akhter was trapped for hours before breaking through a wall. She says her monthly wage was $38. Relatives identified their dead among rows of corpses wrapped in white cloth in a nearby school field. Police said the owner of the building, local politician Mohammed Sohel Rana, was told of dangerous cracks on Tuesday. While a bank in the building closed on Wednesday, the factories told their workers there was no danger, industry
officials said. Rana is now on the run, according to police. "An unspecified number of victims are still trapped," said Mizanur Rahman, a rescue worker with the fire brigade, as he clambered over the wreckage. "We can't be certain of getting them all out alive. We are losing a bit of hope." Dhaka's district police chief Habibur Rahman said the death toll could rise further. The government declared a national day of mourning and flags were flown half mast at all official buildings. Dhaka city development authority had filed a case against the building's owner for faulty construction, police chief Rahman said. It filed another case against the owner and the five garments factories for causing unlawful death. Hundreds of volunteers and locals joined fire servicemen and army personnel who have been working frantically to rescue people believed to be trapped under rubble. "We can't give time line when the rescue operation will be completed," Bangladesh Army Brigadier General Mohammed Siddiqul Alam Shikder, leader of the rescue operations told Xinhua. "We're trying our best to rescue first the survivors. If we go for a large scale clean-up that could be detrimental to those who are still under the piles of rubble," he said. –AGENCIES
Letta sees good chances of forming Italy govt ROME: Prime Ministerdesignate Enrico Letta saw "improving" chances of success as he began negotiations on Thursday to form a new government and end a nearly two-month-old stalemate in the euro zone's third-largest economy. The 46-year-old deputy head of the badly fractured center-left Democratic Party (PD), was the President Giorgio Napolitano's surprise choice to head a broad-based coalition. "He told us that as the hours pass, he feels things are improving, whereas at the start he felt desperate," said Massimo Bitonci, an opposition lawmaker who held talks with him. Markets have reacted favorably to the prospect of an end to the political deadlock, with bond yields and the spread with comparable 10-year German bonds falling. Letta is viewed as a politician capable of governing by consensus. An opinion poll for Italian state television said he would enter office with a 43 percent approval rating. –AGENCIES
Cut arms route for rebel forces
BEIRUT: After five weeks of battle, Syrian government troops captured a strategic town near Damascus, cutting an arms route for rebels trying to topple President Bashar Assad's regime, state media and activists said Thursday. By taking the town of Otaybah, east of the capital, the army has dealt a major setback to opposition forces, who in the past months have made gains near the city they eventually hope to storm. With fresh supplies of weapons from foreign backers, the rebels have recently seized military bases and towns south of the capital in the strategically important region between Damascus and the border with Jordan, about 160 kilometers (100 miles) away. The regime has largely kept the rebels at bay in Damascus, although opposition fighters control several suburbs of the capital from which they have threatened the heart of the city, the seat of Assad's power. Last month government troops launched a massive campaign to repel the rebel advances near the capital, deploying elite army units to the rebellious Damascus suburbs and pounding rebel positions with airstrikes. The director of the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, Rami Abdul-Rahman, said government troops regained control
of Otaybah late Wednesday. State-run SANA news agency said Thursday that the army has "restored complete control" over Otaybah. The official news services also said Assad's troops "discovered a number of tunnels which were used by terrorists to move and transfer weapons and ammunitions." The regime and state media refer to rebels as terrorists and accuse them of being part of a foreign plot seeking to destroy Syria. "It's a huge victory for the regime, and a big blow to the opposition that is now in danger of losing other towns and villages around Damascus," Abdul-Rahman said of the army's campaign. On Thursday, the army was already capitalizing on the territorial gains, pounding southern suburbs of Damascus including the longcontested Daraya with artillery and air strikes, according to the Observatory. The group relies on a network of activists on the ground that also reported fierce clashes between rebels and army troops to the east of the capital. The army's offensive to dislodge rebel fighters from neighborhoods ringing Damascus is part of the government's broader campaign to secure central provinces of Hama and Homs, and areas along the Lebanese border. –AGENCIES
Putin urges West to close ranks against terrorism MOSCOW: The West should jwith Russia in countering terrorism instead of accusing it of being a hotbed of crime, Russian President Vladimir Putin said Thursday. Answering a question about his attitude toward the Boston bombers, who were of Russian origin, Putin said extremism had no nationality. The root causes of terrorism were not in nationality of faith, but extremist sentiment, Putin said, adding joint efforts should be made to fight it. Putin, who was holding his first question-and-answer session with the public since returning to the Kremlin last May, said Russia was also a target of international terrorism. "This tragedy must unite us in countering the common threats," he said. Russians put up more than two million questions for Putin for the live TV event. Two million more questions were expected to come in during the event itself, according to organizers. It is Putin's 11th phone-in event. In previous events, held in 2001-2003 and 2005-2011, Putin answered almost 700 questions in total. In 2011, he answered 88 questions ranging from domestic affairs to foreign policy. –AGENCIES
Something’s rotten in Boston Given the FBI’s long and nefarious record of orchestrating and financing terror plots since September 11, 2001, so that they can then bust them, both burnishing their own image and frightening the public, the last organisation that should be put in charge of questioning Dzhokhar Tsarnaev in the hospital, and of investigating the whole bombing, is the FBI
’M not a conspiracy-minded person, but something definitely stinks about this whole Boston Marathon bombing story. From what we’re reading about the case, the FBI had for at least two, and possibly as many as five, years been investigating Tamerlan Tsarnaev, the 26-year-old older brother killed during a shootout between police and the two brothers, Tamerlan and 19-year-old Dzhokhar. They had interviewed Tamerlan in his home, warned him they were watching what he ate, what he looked at on his computer, etc. They knew he had gone to Russia, Dagestan and Chechnya. Then there’s the money thing. We’re told that Tamerlan had dropped out of community college because of money problems, right? Community college? That costs almost nothing to attend. That’s the whole point of community colleges: everyone can afford them. And he was reportedly only going parttime! But then, the two brothers are driving around in a Mercedes and wearing fancy clothes? We’re talking about two brothers, both graduates of public school, with a
father who was ill and living in Dagestan, who had worked as a curbside mechanic while in the US, and a mother who had an in-home beauty salon business, and these lads somehow were stylish dressers and drove around in an expensive car expensive to buy even used, and terribly expensive to maintain, too. Where did all that money come from? We don’t know. Tamerlan was reportedly working at things like delivering pizza during that period. This while living with his wife and caring at home for their young daughter, now three. Tamerlan’s artist wife was said to be supporting the struggling family by working “60-80 hours a week” as a home healthcare aide, one of the lowest-paying jobs you can find, often paying less than minimum wage. Why is all this troubling? Because time and time again, when purported terrorist plots are “disrupted” and alleged terrorists are arrested, it turns out they are inept dupes who have been led into their “plots” by FBI provocateurs. So was this horrific Boston Marathon bombing yet another in this long string of FBI sting operations that perhaps went wrong? Or worse, was this, as both
the Tsarnaev parents, now divorced and living separately in Dagestan, are suggesting, actually a “false flag” set-up by US intelligence agencies? There are other curiosities about this whole affair. It has been widely reported, even in the mainstream local media (at least early on), that there was an unusual amount of police presence at both the start and finish of the marathon this year - activity that included police drug-sniffing dogs and also - get this! - private security personnel, reportedly from Craft International, wearing the same kind of black clothing and black backpacks as were seen being worn by the Tsarnaev brothers! What’s that about? The similarity of what the Tsarnaev brothers were wearing to what the Craft mercs were wearing are incredible, right down to the black caps with the white logo on the front (Tamerlan's Bridgestone logo wasn't a skull, but from a distance could have passed for the same thing). Craft International’s website describes the company as providing ‘the best security, defense and combat weapons training in the world to military, police, corporate and civilian clients’. To date, no one has come forward to say who invited or
contracted with Craft to have their special forces-trained staff "on duty" at the Boston Marathon. The media should be demanding an answer to that. Why were they needed? It's not standard operating procedure for these kinds of events. Surely, if the sniffer dogs were doing their job and weren’t all stuffed up in their sinuses, they would have detected two amateurs who had allegedly just packed two large kitchen pressure cookers with black powder and nails, and then placed them into backpacks, and who were walking around in the crowd at the finish line. Black powder has a strong recognisable odor, and would be very hard to work with in any kind of clean manner - sort of like working with talcum powder and trying to keep it from getting all over the place (try it sometime). Dzhokhar himself, currently being held under tight security in Boston’s Beth Israel Hospital where he is in serious condition with three bullet wounds and has been questioned by the FBI prior to being read his rights and being formally charged, is lucky to be alive at all. When he was discovered, weakened from blood loss, hiding inside a trailer-mounted pleasure boat in a retired New England Telephone
employee’s driveway, police called to the scene by the owner, David Henneberry, initially pumped bullets into the boat trying to kill him, until they were ordered to stop firing by a supervisor. It is not known whether the bullet that hit Dzhokhar’s neck, producing a wound which now reportedly prevents him from talking, was one of those fired by police at that time (police are claiming it was "probably" self-inflicted). It will be interesting to hear what he eventually has to say...or write if he's had his voice box blown away. I don't give much credence to reports he is "confessing" to the feds. Those same reports mention that he is also sedated, so the skilled professionals on the FBI's crack captive interview team were in a great position to ask disorienting and leading questions to get answers they were anxious for him to say. We'll have to wait - if he survives his secretive captivity in the guarded confines of the hospital, to hear more. Meanwhile the photos keep turning up raising greater questions about who was really behind the bombings, and what it was all about. I don’t know what to make of all these oddities, but I know one thing for sure. Given the FBI’s long and
nefarious record of orchestrating and financing terror plots since September 11, 2001, so that they can then bust them, both burnishing their own image and frightening the public, the last organisation that should be put in charge of questioning Dzhokhar Tsarnaev in the hospital, and of investigating the whole bombing, is the FBI. The agency has far too much explaining to do itself in this bizarre case. Before the country marches further down the road towards becoming a police state, with martial law takeovers of cities becoming the new "normal", we need to find out what the FBI - and what Craft International - were up to in Boston, and where the Tsarnaev brothers were getting their money, their ideas and their supplies from. (And by the way, if you thought that Boston's city-wide "shelter in place" order was a voluntary protect-thepublic thing, and not an example of martial law in action, see the footage of how it was actually being handled on the ground, with citizens being ordered out of their homes at gunpoint, and police, acting like stormtroopers, not public servants, yelling orders at frightened residents). (ThisCan’tBeHappening.com)
FRIDAY, APRIL 26, 2013
Egyptian ambassador wants enhanced trade ties I SL AM ABAD: Pakistan and Egypt have trustworthy political relations and enjoying excellent diplomatic relations, therefore both the countries should also consider improving economic ties and bilateral trade relations. Said Mohamed El-Said Hindam, Ambassador of Egypt in Pakistan, while addressing business community of Islamabad Chamber of Commerce & Industry (ICCI) said that both countries are facing almost similar problems and they could better face the current challenges by promoting bilateral cooperation in multiple fields. The Ambassador said that Egypt is
an export-oriented economy as well as he cited Egypt’s environment and infrastructure as being conducive for free and preferential trade with all the countries. He said that Egypt has tremendous opportunities of investment in the areas of real estate development, fertilizer, oil & gas sector and having expertise in drilling as well. He also highlighted the scope of importing fish and other sea food items from Pakistan which have great demand in Egyptian markets. Hindam further maintained that the most important. Egyptian exports are cement and
dairy products, however, there are numerous sectors in which both the countries could start joint ventures despite having comparative advantage in many sectors. The Ambassador was of the view that Islamabad Chamber of Commerce & Industry should also sign a MoU with Cairo Chamber of Commerce & Industry aimed at promoting existing volume of trade which stood at $380million. In his welcome address, Zafar Bakhtawari lauded the vision of Egyptian diplomats and said that Pakistan attaches great importance to its relations with Egypt as it is one of the most important countries
of Africa and Middle East. Islamabad Chamber of Commerce & Industry President said that bilateral trade between Pakistan and Egypt was not up to the potential which should be increased up to $1billion in coming years because there were enormous opportunities of enhancing cooperation in various fields between both the countries. Bakhtawari further added that there was no visit of any Egyptian President since 40years while there were a number of visits from Pakistan side but recent visit of Egyptian President, Mohammad Morsi has opened
new windows for cooperation in several fields including agriculture, health, telecommunication and technical support. He was of the view that Egyptian parliamentary level delegations should also visit Pakistan which could be a landmark in the traditional and friendly relations between the two major Muslim countries. He highlighted the importance of establishing direct flights from Islamabad to Cairo which would definitely improve the bilateral relations between two important countries of the Muslim world Pakistan and Egypt. –ONLINE
Virtual stores should pay real taxes
Oil production rises for exxon, Conoco HOUSTON: Quarterly results from Exxon Mobil Corp (XOM.N) and ConocoPhillips (COP.N) on Thursday showed that while overall growth remained elusive, output rose in key basins in the United States where the oil and gas companies are spending heavily to grow crude production.North American shale basins and the Gulf of Mexico are seen as more secure places for energy companies to invest because they typically offer a steady source of growth. Conoco said in December that more than half of its nearly $16 billion budget for 2013 will be spent in North America.Exxon's U.S. oil and natural gas liquids production rose 2 percent in the first quarter, compared with an overall output decline of 3.5 percent."Lower production at Exxon is an ongoing trend, they need so many projects to come online to offset field decline," said Brian Youngberg, energy company analyst at Edward Jones. –AGENCIES
ISLAMABAD: LABARD President Muhammad Pervaiz Malik inaugurates LABARD camp . –ONLINE
PTCL introduces new eVO Tab ISLAMABAD: Pakistan Telecommunication Company limited (PTCL) has introduced a new EVO Tab with enhanced and upgraded features for a rich user experience. PTCL EVO Tab comes with an upgraded Android 4.0 Ice cream Sandwich operating system and Dual Core 1.2 GHz processor, offering great value for money and enabling customers to get the most out of their multimedia content whilst on the go. Omer Khalid, PTCL Executive Vice President (EVP) Wireless Services, commented at the launch, “At PTCL, we believe in introducing technologically advanced products and services to meet the ever icreasing demands of our customers. The new EVO Tab is another first by the company, enhancing the way we create value for our existing customer base and also serves as a platform for reaching out to new audiences.” The new device offers High Definition touch screen, HD quality video playback, 4GB internal memory and dual cameras. The front camera offers high quality video conferencing options through Skype, and rear auto focus 5.0 MP cameras. –ONLINE
stocks gain on earnings, u.s. data, bonds fall NEW YORK: World equity markets advanced on Thursday as data indicated the U.S. labor market remains resilient despite other recent signs of slower growth, while higher-than-expected corporate earnings buoyed the economic outlook and led bond prices lower. Wall Street opened higher, following gains in Europe, where markets were lifted on growing expectations the European Central Bank will soon cut interest rates A report from the U.S. Labor Department said the number of Americans filing new claims for unemployment benefits fell last week by a surprisingly large 16,000. The report appeared to counter several weeks of signs that U.S. economic activity softened in March and early April, a phenomenon that economists have dubbed the spring swoon because it has happened the past two years. Benchmark 10-year U.S. –AGENCIES
US Dollar Euro British Pound UAE Dirham Saudi Riyal Kuwaiti Dinar Canadian Dollar
99.70 128.26 150.40 26.90 26.40 345.30 95.48
99.95 128.50 150.65 27.15 26.65 351.85 97.17
ince the birth of the Internet, online retailers and consumers have guarded the tax-free click. Not having to collect state sales taxes has allowed digital stores to flourish. Shoppers have been able to find what they want in regular stores, only to order the same product online -- tax-free. And online sales have exploded. Last year, the U.S. Census Bureau estimates, retail e-commerce totaled $225 billion, an increase of almost 16 percent from 2011. Online purchases now account for 5.2 percent of total retail sales. The subsidy -- worth about $23 billion today, according to Bloomberg News, and about $52 billion in unpaid state sales taxes since 2006 -- has helped nurture e-commerce through its startup, even if success came at the expense of brick-and-mortar rivals. But now that ecommerce has grown up, it isn’t necessary to keep coddling the industry. The Barack Obama administration agrees, as do many U.S. senators. Seventy-four of them voted yesterday to begin debating legislation that would allow states to collect taxes from out- of-state Internet vendors selling goods to their residents. Large retailers, including Wal-Mart Stores Inc. (WMT), support the measure. So does online giant Amazon.com Inc., which had clashed with many states over its refusal to collect sales taxes in the past. More recently, it has been building shipping centers across the U.S. to speed delivery of its packages. The expansion has added to Amazon’s physical presence in many states, along with its obligation to collect sales taxes. Five States On the other side is EBay Inc. (EBAY) (which is asking millions of small businesses and consumers that use its digital marketplace to lobby against the bill), the five states without sales taxes and those who oppose any tax, even one that leads to a more equitable system. It would be incorrect to portray this as an alliance of big business and big government against small business and consumers. For one thing, it isn’t really a new levy. It’s true that retailers with no physical presence in a state haven’t had to collect state sales taxes since a 1992 Supreme Court decision. Shoppers, however, are supposed to pay sales taxes voluntarily as part of their annual filing. It’s almost impossible to get caught cheating, so hardly anyone complies. The Senate bill also wouldn’t force states to collect tax; it only frees them to do so. New Hampshire, Oregon and other states with no sales tax could continue with the status quo. Moreover, retailers with less than $1 million in out-of-state sales would be exempt.Some lawmakers claim that the legislation would be a burden on companies that lack the resources to keep track of thousands of state and local sales tax rates. This is overblown. States would have to simplify their tax systems before requiring other jurisdictions to start remitting taxes; at any rate, off-the- shelf software now makes it relatively easy to keep track of the array of sales levies.When it was in its infancy, e-commerce received necessary exemptions. -ONLINE
USAID discusses power, DISCOs with minister STAFF REPORTER ISLAMABAD: A four-member delegation of USAID lead by Jonathan M. Conly called on the Federal Minister for Water and Power. Dr. Musadik Malik on Thursday and discussed various matters of cooperation in power sector, improvements in Discos and financing for power projects. A statement issued by the power ministry said that the minister while briefing the delegation said we have identified problems in generation, pilferage, transmission and distribution losses, inefficiency and mismanagement are major causes of the crisis. As a short term solution to reduce the hours of load shedding, Ministry of Water and Power has planned to shift the resources from inefficient plants to efficient plants by providing them oil and gas to generate additional 1000 MW. He also said
the government has been asked to provide 150 billion rupees and 150 mmcfd gas to run the efficient power plants on maximum capacity. Malik also informed the delegation that the allocations of oil and gas would be uploaded on website and made public. Performance guarantee agreements would also be signed with the Chief Executive Officers of Discos (power distributing companies. Construction of dams, run of river hydel projects, coal and alternative energy generation projects are solution to energy crisis on sustainable basis while the US participation in these projects would ease the situation, the Minister observed. Mr. Jonathan Conley, USAID Country Head during the course of meeting said that United States and Pakistan together are carrying out large-scale energy projects, that will add 900 MW of capacity to the power grid by the end 2013.These projects
include renovating the power plant at the Tarbela Dam: modernizing the generators of the Mangla Dam: upgrading the Guddu, Jamshoro and Muzafargarh power plants and construction ofGomalZam Dam. US technical assistance is also supporting crucial policy and management reforms underway in Pakistan’s Ministry of Water and Power. The reforms are focused both on reducing technical losses on the power grid and on increasing receivables. A five year USAID funded programme is already under progress which aims to improve the performance of Discos in terms of reduction in losses and improvement in revenues and customer services to bring them at par with best global practices,he maintained. USAID will provide global expertise to give input on short term relief measures and long term ongoing commentary be added.
PIAF for cut in PSDP to overcome circular debt LAHORE: Pakistan Industrial and Traders Associations Front (PIAF) has called for a drastic cut in Public Sector Development Programme to overcome energy sector Circular Debt that has crossed the staggering figure of Rs870 billion. In a statement issued here, the PIAF Chairman Malik Tahir Javaid said that the amount represents about four per cent of GDP, and if circular debt continued unabated, will increasingly constrain the availability of electricity and further slow down economic activity. “We consider that some expenditure including defence budget are absolutely necessary but all unnecessary funds should be diverted to eliminate
circular debt once for all. Only a consolidated energy strategy would work.” He said that the private sector understands that poor governance, delayed recoveries and pilferage are the reasons for fast increase in the circular debt therefore the government should use iron hand to control the factor and if it needs some assistance from the private sector it would readily extend maximum cooperation. He suggested that the government should undertake specific policies and programmes to improve the governance and performance of energy sector entities to decrease costs, increase cash flow, and ensure operational and financial integrity. –ONLINE
OGDCL announces nine month ﬁnancial results ISL AM ABAD: The Board of Directors of Oil & Gas Development Company Limited (OGDCL), Thursday, announced the financial results for the nine months ended on March 31, 2013 OGDCL BoD announce the results in a meeting held here which said that company’s net sales revenue increased to Rs 169.091 billion compared to Rs 142.035 billion in the corresponding period of last year. Profit after tax increased to Rs 75.671 billion in the period under review against Rs 69.245 billion in the same period of last year and Earnings per share has increased to Rs 17.59 as against Rs 16.10 in the same period of proceeding year. The Board of Directors announced the third interim cash divided for the period ended March 31, 2013 @ Rs 1.75 per share i.e. 17.5 percent. The above entitlement will be paid to the shareholders whose name will appear in the Register of Members on Monday, June 10, 2013. The Share Transfer Books of the Company will be closed from Tuesday, June 11, 2013 to Tuesday, June 18, 2013 ( both days inclusive).Transfer received at the Share Registrar Department, Central Depository Company of Pakistan Limited, CDC House, 99-B, S.M.C.H.S, Main Shaharah-e-Faisl, Karachi-74400 at the close of business on June 10, 2013 will be treated in time for the purpose of above entitlement to the transferees. -ONLINE
HUBC earns Rs 6.4 per share during 9MFY13 ISLAM ABAD: Hub Power Company (HUBC) announced unconsolidated earnings of Rs6.4 per share during 9MFY13, depicting a handsome increase of 49% as compared to EPS Rs4.3 recorded in the same period last year. The earnings growth primarily stems commissioning of Narrowal project. Another factor that played their role in earnings growth is Ushaped based return while higher indexation factor (PKR depreciation and inflation) is also expected to have played its part. Still awaiting detail accounts, we can not rule out the possibility of
efficiency gains. The company posted earnings of Rs2.3 in the 3QFY13 versus Rs1.7 in the same period last year, up by a significant 35%. On sequential basis, earnings are marginally up from 2QFY13.
Fatima Fer til iz ers pos ts n et earnings of Rs1.7b Fatima Fertilizers posted net earnings of Rs1.7bn (EPS Rs0.8) for first quarter of 2013 as against Rs438mn (EPS Rs0.2), up almost 4.0x. During the period, Fatima earned revenue of Rs7.5bn as against Rs3.3bn in 2011, up 125 per cent.
Although, the company’s gross profitability rose by 86 per cent to Rs4.4bn, its gross margins remained depressed during 1Q2013.Fatima’s gross margins fell by 12pps to 59 per cent versus 71 per cent in the same period last year. We believe lower product prices in 1Q2013 to be the main culprit behind squeezing margins. Furthermore, additional burden on margins was put on by PKR devaluation against US$, as company’s cost of input (feed gas) is locked at US$0.70/mmbtu. In addition to trickle down impact of higher gross profit
growth, the company’s bottomline was further bolstered by Rs422mn reduction in finance cost to Rs1.0bn.
N M L g e t s u n c o n s o l i da t e d profits of Rs4.1b Nishat Mills Limited (NML) has earned unconsolidated profits of Rs4.1bn during third quarter of current fiscal year and showed growth of 63 per cent against Rs2.5bn last year. Revenues of the company improved by 20 per cent to Rs38.9 billion in third quarter of current fiscal year on the back of strong cotton prices, firm regional demand
and depreciating local currency. Further, absence of inventory losses and favorable textile prices in the region improved company gross margins by 2.2pps to 17 per cent in 9MFY13 as compared to 14.8 per cent in the same period last year. As compared to preceding quarter, Nishat Mills Limited sales declined by 6 per cent to Rs12.6bn in 3QFY13. Further, 41 per cent decline in other income to Rs543mn due to low dividend income also diluted the bottom-line by 30 per cent QoQ to Rs1.3bn in 3QFY13. –ONLINE
CMYK FRIDAY, APRIL 26, 2013
Ben Aﬄeck to receive honorary degree
I am losing weight to look my best: Parineeti Chopra
LONDON: Argo star Ben Affleck is to be given an honorary degree by Brown University. The actor and Oscar-winning filmmaker will be granted an honorary Doctor of Fine Arts (DFA) degree next month in recognition of his achievements in cinema, the university announced. Ben Affleck is among six people who will receive honorary doctorates during the university's next commencement ceremony on May 26. He was recently linked with the director's chair on Warner Bros' planned adaptation of Nathaniel Philbrick's forthcoming period novel 'Bunker Hill: A City, A Siege, A Revolution', which is set in the aftermath of the Boston Tea Party. However, Ben Affleck recently said that he intends to spend more time with his family following his Oscars success, while wife Jennifer Garner works on her forthcoming movies The Dallas Buyer's Club and Draft Day. -SHOWBIZ DESK
MUMBAI: Actor Parineeti Chopra has been on a weight loss spree but clarifies it’s not specifically for her upcoming Karan Johar production, Hasee Toh Phasee. ‘There have been a lot of rumours that I’m losing weight for the film, but that’s not true. I’ll just try and lose as much as I can, so I can look as good as I can in my next film,’ says the 24-year-old. “I was anyway planning to lose weight because for Ladies vs Ricky Bahl, I had to be a little chubby and then of course, I started losing for Ishaqzaade. But I want to look a little better, so I decided to lose weight anyway,’ adds the actor. Scheduled for release in January next year, the shooting for Hasee Toh Phasee, which stars Siddharth Malhotra in the male lead, has begun. Parineeti, who won a lot of appreciation for her spontaneity in her last two films, says: “I know there are a few female actors who are comfortable with their size and would like to only concentrate on acting, I’d like to do both.’ -SHOWBIZ DESK
Hira Tareen and Ali Saﬁna are engaged! Both knew each other from a long time Ali was previously engaged to model Rubya Chaudhry
SHOWBIZ DESK KARACHI: Hira Tareen and Ali Safina are engaged, She says, ” Yesterday I got engaged to my best friend Ali Safina and one of the best human beings I have come across my entire life. To say the very least I am super happy especially after all the warm wishes from family and friends from all over the world. Thank you all for making our special day even more special with your positivity and blessings.
Sequel to Chalo Dilli in pre-production
Love you all! Now check out how good we look together.” There are many fewer models in the Pakistan fashion industry who have earned lots of fame and constant love from the fans, the Hira Tareen name is taken in those models. Hira Tareen was not one of the popular models but she hosted a show called Maal ka Swaal on one of the local channel and this program changed her life and she became famous. Hira Tareen is a very confident girl and I think so she has gained this much confidence from Dallas as she is there since she is eight years old. She is very independent girl and the main reason behind it is that she has spent her life in the west. Talented Hira Tareen came from Dallas and she always wanted to become a super model. She has a very supportive family and her parents have always supported her and this is the only thing which has made her successful. While talking about Ali, He is the owner of that deep, gruff voice most girls anticipated after a day’s work from 12 am to 2 am slot on FM 96. Our multitalented hottie is a radio jockey, video jockey, disc jockey, aspiring actor and a musician what more could a girl ask for? He lived in Glasgow and spun discs as a hobby and profession but later the gung-ho Punjabi in him forced him to come back home. He enrolled himself at the National Academy of Performing Arts and soon became the force to reckon with in the Pakistani entertainment industry.
Supreme Court orders stay on Zanjeer remake
MUMBAI: Lara Dutta, whose first home production Chalo Dilli, was well received by the audience is in the process of making a sequel to the film. Currently under pre-production, the sequel will have Dutta playing the protagonist once again. Though it is confirmed that Shashant Shah who directed the original will not be directing the sequel, it is still undecided whether the unusual casting of Dutta with Vinay Pathak will be repeated. The 2011 comedy had Dutta, a high profile investment banker, and Pathak, an irrepressible businessman, on their fascinating journey from Jaipur to Delhi. -SHOWBIZ DESK
MUMBAI: India's Supreme Court has ordered a stay on the release of Apoorva Lakhia's Zanjeer remake. Earlier there were reports that the battle over the remake of the 1973 film had cleared up with the Bombay High Court giving producer Amit Mehra a green signal. Apparently, the Supreme Court has ordered the arbitrator to complete the arbitration proceedings expeditiously and positively within the next six weeks. This order comes in the wake of Amit's brothers, Sumeet and Puneet, approaching it against the High Court order. Mehra's remake of Zanjeer had run into trouble when his brothers Sumeet and Puneet terminated the contract that gave him the remake rights in the first place citing non-payment of dues. The Zanjeer remake, which features Ram Charan Teja, Priyanka Chopra, Sanjay Dutt, Sri Hari, Prakash Raj and Mahie Gill was slated for release this June. -SHOWBIZ DESK
Madhuri shoots item song with Ranbir Kapoor NEW DELHI: Bollywood's dancing diva Madhuri Dixit has begun shooting for her debut item song with Ranbir Kapoor in Yeh Jawaani Hai Deewani. Madhuri, who has just wrapped up Gulaab Gang, is also busy with her second movie, Dedh Ishqiya. It is the first time that Ranbir Kapoor will get to share screen space with his childhood idol Madhuri Dixit. The song has been choreographed by Farah Khan, who earlier worked with Madhuri Dixit in Hum Tumhare Hain Sanam in 2002. Yeh Jawaani Hai Deewani, which also stars Deepika Padukone, Kalki Koechlin and Aditya Roy Kapoor is slated to release on May 31. -SHOWBIZ DESK
CALIFORNIA: Gwyneth Paltrow sizzled in Antonio Berardi sheer-panel dress, at ‘Iron Man 3’ premiere red carpet.
Baseball film 42 scores $27.3 million SHOWBIZ DESK LONDON: Baseball drama 42, the story of Jackie Robinson becoming the first black player in the major leagues more than 60 years ago, took home a win at the movie box office after scoring $27.3 million from weekend ticket sales in the United States and Canada. The film about the Hall of Fame player topped industry forecasts for an opening of about $20 million. It defeated new horror spoof Scary Movie 5, the second-place finisher with $15.2 million from Friday through Sunday, according to studio estimates. Animated Stone Age adventure film The Croods took the No. 3 slot. The Dreamworks Animation production rung up sales of $13.2 million in its fourth week for a total of $142.5 million in the U.S. and Canada. In international markets, Tom Cruise sci-fi thriller Oblivion debuted with $61.1 million in 52 countries, distributor Universal Studios said. The film opened in the United States and Canada last Friday. 42 stars TV actor Chadwick Boseman, seen on shows such as Fringe and Justified, as the legendary Robinson. The title refers to Robinson's jersey number with the Brooklyn Dodgers. Harrison Ford plays Branch Rickey, the Dodgers general manager who paved the way for Robinson to enter Major League Baseball as its first
black player in 1947. Audiences thought the movie was a home run, awarding a rare A+ rating in polling by survey firm CinemaScore. Critics also gave 42 high marks, with 75 per cent recommending the movie among reviews on the Rotten Tomatoes website. "It was big in small towns, large towns, urban markets and suburban markets," said Dan Fellman, president of theatrical distribution for Warner Bros., the Time Warner Inc unit that distributed the film. Legendary Pictures produced the film for $40 million. Box office analyst for Hollywood.com Paul Dergarabedian noted that the film's 25 per cent uptick on Saturday indicated strong word of mouth.
Psy knocked from top of Korean charts A 63-year-old Cho Yong-pil, took over the top spot with ‘Bounce’ Fans lined up to buy ‘Hello,’ Cho's first album in a decade
SEOUL: South Korean rapper Psy, whose latest video "Gentleman" tracked global megahit "Gangnam Style" by going viral on the Internet, has been knocked from the top of the music charts in his native country by a 63-year-old easy listening pop singer. "Gangnam Style", which holds the YouTube record for most views with more than 1.5 billion, catapulted the sun
glassed Korean with the garish jackets to world stardom and made him one of the best-known faces to grace the growing K-pop music scene. But Cho Yong-pil, who has been a fixture of Korean pop music since 1975 with his electronic music and ballads, took over the top spot in Korea with "Bounce," according to both the daily and weekly charts on Naver, Korea's top Internet portal. Fans lined up to buy "Hello," Cho's
Nana Patekar refuses to work with Sanjay
first album in a decade, when it went on sale earlier this week, and packed a stadium concert on Tuesday with people screaming his nickname of "Oppa" - a word used by Korean women for older men that Psy took to the world with the refrain "Oppa Gangnam Style". Cho's songs took the top 10 places on the daily charts, pushing "Gentleman" to no. 13, and Psy had to settle for second place on the weekly charts. But "Gentleman" surged to fifth place on the Billboard
Hot 100 this week and has racked up over 220 million views on YouTube after smashing the record for first-day views for songs. Psy told reporters he had nothing but respect for the veteran crooner, noting that Cho had praised him at a Tuesday news conference. "I couldn't be happier, although getting on the Billboard chart also makes me really grateful," Psy told reporters prior to leaving for the United States.
MUMBAI: Bollywood veteran and three-time National Award winner Nana Patekar reportedly refuses to work with Sanjay Dutt or watch his movies. While many of Dutt’s friends and well wishers are coming out in support of the actor. Aamir Khan reportedly altered his filming schedule to help him complete Raj Kumar Hirani’s film “Peekay”. Dutt’s close friends Ajay Devgn and Salman Khan also helped him wholeheartedly. But Nana Patekar, on the other hand, completely backed off from collaborating with Dutt in the future. The 62-year-old reportedly feels that Dutt should adhere to the court’s rulings and should not be given a reprieve for his crime. Moreover, he said that the law should be same for everyone and Dutt should be punished for his deeds. The Supreme Court of India recently extended Dutt’s duration to surrender by four weeks due to his professional commitments. The “Munna Bhai” actor filed a review petition against the March 21st judgment upholding his conviction under the Arms Act and sentencing him to five years in prison. -SHOWBIZ DESK
THE SPOKESMAN - RAWALPINDI/ISLAMABAD
2 cops, two militants killed in karak attack KARAK: At least two policemen and two attackers were killed in an encounter in the Barbara area of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa’s Karak district on Thursday morning. Police said militants attacked the police in Barbara’s Banda Daud Shah area as a result, two police personnel — a subinspector and a constable died — while two attackers were also killed. Police also arrested three attackers. Meanwhile, at least four people were injured in another incident in Parachinar when a tractor was hit by a landmine near Parachinar sports complex. The injured were shifted to a nearby hospital. –AGENCIES
APRIL 26, 2013
Stabilize economy, IMF tells caretakers MOMO BAIG
WASHINGTON: The International Monetary Fund Thursday said it met with Pakistani officials last week, but has not yet received a request for aid from the South Asian country, which faces a critical balance of payments situation. The International Monetary Fund urged the caretaker Pakistani government to put more effort into stabilizing the country's struggling
Franks says no request for aid received
economy, after meetings between officials from both sides in Washington last week. IMF Pakistan Mission Chief Jeffrey Franks said the lender had not received any official request for an aid program from Pakistan's top financial officials amid "fruitful discussions" during the spring meetings of the IMF and World Bank last week. "We have not
received a formal request for a program from the authorities," Franks said in a statement. Still, the Washington-based lender added, "Pakistan faces difficult economic challenges and we urge the authorities to begin taking the necessary actions to stabilize the economy and lay the groundwork for future growth." The IMF cannot offer a loan package without first getting a
Musharraf treason trial
Justice will be done: SC
91 candidates booked for violating EcP code GUJRANWALA: Special Judicial Magistrate Gujranwala has registered cases against 91 candidates in the city for violating Election Commission’s code of conduct. These include candidates from PPP, PML N, Jamate-Islami, PML Q and a number of independent contestants. The Judicial Magistrate has summoned these candidates, contesting for provincial and national assembly seats, and if proved guilty, they would not only be thrown out of the electoral race but would also face fines. –ONLINE
Ex-PML-N MNA convicted in dual nationality case SAHIWAL: Chaudhry Zahid Iqbal, former MNA from PML-N has been convicted and sentenced to 15 months imprisonment and fined for Rs 5000 in dual nationality case. Media reports said Sessions Judge Sahiwal Mushtaq Ahmad Tarar heard the case of Zahid Iqbal Thursday. Counsel for Zahid Iqbal advanced arguments with reference to dual nationality case. The court awarded punishment of 15 months jail term and fined Rs 5000 under article 78 of the constitution after hearing the arguments as the dual nationality case was proven against him. . The police arrested Zahid Iqbal under the orders of court and shifted him to Jail. –ONLINE
Pakistani-born US citizen held on terrorism charges VIRGINIA: A Pakistani-born US citizen has been taken into custody on charges for allegedly making threats of terrorism against County officials, local American media reported on Thursday. Saad Lodhi started making threats after federal lawsuits he filed against Fairfax County were dismissed, foreign media reported. According to the affidavit, Saad Lodhi sent threatening emails to several county officials since May 2012. “Lodhi sent an email … with the statement ‘Advise the Board of Supervisors to start hiring new commonwealth attorneys because I’m about to tell them what municipal fatality means very soon,’” the affidavit said. In an April 3 email to the Board of Supervisors, Lodhi is quoted as writing, “Dear Fairfax County Board of Supervisors, just to give you an update, we are now proceeding to the next phase of warfare. I just submitted a concealed weapons permit … and once that clears through, I have a special gift for Fairfax County commonwealth attorney – click click click……” –ONLINE
8 Pakistani Taliban arrested in kandahar KANDAHAR: Afghan security forces claimed that local authorities in southern Kandahar province arrested at least 8 Pakistani Taliban in Panjwai district. District governor for Panjwai, Haji Fazal Ahmad, confirming the report, said the Pakistani Taliban militants were sent to suppress antiTaliban uprising forces. Fazal Ahmad further added Taliban district governor for Zherai was also among those arrested. –ONLINE
Three British Muslim men jailed for terror oﬀences LONDON: Three British Muslims, including a convert who was featured in a documentary about radical Islam and a former London police support officer, have been jailed for terror offences. Richard Dart, Imran Mahmood and Jahangir Alom pleaded guilty last month for traveling to Pakistan for terror training between 2010 and 2012. Dart, who appeared in a BBC documentary that chronicled the efforts of his filmmaker stepbrother to understand why he had embraced an uncompromising form of Islam, was jailed for six years Thursday at London's Old Bailey court. –ONLINE
request. Press reports in Pakistan had earlier said the IMF offered the country a $5 billion loan. The troubled nuclear-armed state, heading for a general election on May 11, has seen its foreign exchange reserves dwindle and currency slide and has been expected to seek a fresh bailout package from the IMF. The IMF set an $11.3 billion loan programme for the country in
November 2008, to stave off a balance of payments crisis. But Pakistan abandoned the deal in 2011, refusing to carry out strict financial reforms required by the IMF. Some analysts have since warned about a new balance of payments crisis. Last month, the Asian Development Bank's country director warned that Pakistan was close to running out of money to pay for its imports and will need another IMF package by the end of the year to avert a crisis.
SHC decision against Musharraf was unjustified, court told Mush lawyer warned against anti-judge remarks
KARACHI: Residents of Lyari gather on Mauripur Road as they protest against killing of three persons during operation by law enforcement agency in their area. –ONLINE
15 journalists ﬁle petitions
Missing persons’ case
Relatives try to storm courtroom
SC orders audit of secret funds
Promises action against inclusion of bogus names Asma blasts publishing of list by SC
OUR STAFF REPORTER
ISLAMABAD: The Supreme Court Thursday ordered Director General of Federal Audit Dr Asif-ur-Rehman to conduct audit of Rs 180 million utilized from the secret fund of Information Ministry within three weeks. Denying receiving any benefits, around 15 print and electronic media journalists including eminent journalists like Rauf Klasra, Rameeza Majid Nizami, Muneeza Jehangir d/o Asma Jehangir, Fareeha Masood, Shakeel Turabi and others moved the Supreme Court against publishing of their names in a list of journalists who were allegedly paid by the Information Ministry from secret funds. “It’s a conspiracy to publish names of neat and clean taking petty financial benefits,” they said in their pleas. Attorney General Irfan Qadir raised objections about the publicizing and audit of the secret fund of Ministry of Information and Broadcasting. He requested the court his character assignation is being carried out in the media and the court should take notice on it. The bench sought reply from Attorney General, Ministry of Information and Broadcasting and other concerned parties on May 2. Justice Khawaja said in his remarks that the amount was taken from the pockets of the public, so the court
would take account of every single penny. Clean journalists would come out from the audit. The court had asked Ministry of Information to provide the list of beneficiaries of the secret fund after the attestation of three officer of the ministry. If the list would be proved bogus, then the court would take action against the officer who attested it. During Thursday’s hearing of the media commission case, former SCBA president and human rights activist Asma Jahangir criticised the apex court’s decision to publish the list on its website. “The court’s website is not a gossip column. There is a limit to such things,” a visibly angry Jahangir told the bench headed by Justice Jawwad Khawaja. Responding to criticism, Justice Khawaja said the list was corroborated and signed by the secretary and director general of the concerned ministries. He said the list was published in order to inform the world about the truth; hence, the apex court directed the audit of the list. He also said that the judiciary was not a holy cow. Asma, however, said the Supreme Court did not publish the names of hardened criminals on its website. “Instead you have put oranges and apples in one box.” She said the court should get out of the state of self-righteousness and stop engaging in ‘loose talk’. Attorney General Irfan Qadir objected to her remarks. Subsequently, the court adjourned the hearing to May 2.
PE SH AWAR: Relatives of ‘missing’ persons staged a protest during Thursday’s hearing of the missing persons’ case at the Peshawar High Court and tried to storm into the courtroom of PHC Chief Justice Dost Mohammad Khan. A two-member bench of the PHC, comprising Justice Dost and Justice Roohul Amin Khan, resumed the hearing of the case pertaining to 335 missing persons. During the hearing, deputy attorney general Muzzammil Khan presented a list of missing persons in the court according to which 14 persons had been shifted to various internal cells after cases against them were quashed. Moreover, 10 of the missing persons had returned to their respective homes. Khyber tribal region’s political agent Mazhar Zeb informed the court that four of the missing persons were killed during an operation conducted in Jamrud tehsil. Justice Dost ordered compensation for the heirs of the four persons killed during the Jamrud operation. Relatives of the missing staged a vigorous protest outside the court’s premises and at one point during the hearing tried to storm into the courtroom. However, Police personnel restricted the protesters from entering the courtroom. –AGENCIES
I SLAM ABAD: All ends of justice will be met and verdict will be given in consonance with law and constitution. Justice Jawwad S Khawaja gave these remarks on Thursday while presiding over a 3-member bench of the Supreme Court while hearing identical petitions seeking prosecution of Pervez Musharraf under treason charges. Justice Khilji Arif Hussain remarked, “SC has laid down in its decision in categorical terms that no step of dictators will be indemnified by the court nor the Parliament has powers to do so. If any judge of SC or high court does so he will also be proceeded against under the code of conduct. Advancing remarks against the judges should be stopped now”. Ibrahim Satti, counsel for Pervez Musharraf took the ground that “SC is still keeping doctrine of necessity alive. In July 31 decision all the martial laws imposed by past dictators were declared just while Musharraf ’s martial law was branded a martial law which he imposed to serve personal interest because he wanted to become president under it. Court should not give such a decision which may affect trial process against Musharraf ”. Continuing his arguments he said courts were protecting the doctrine of necessity. Justice Khilji said, “the then Attorney General (AG) had said that Musharraf ’s November 3, 2007 steps were illegal and unconstitutional.” Justice Jawwad said, “AG Irfan Qadir should be asked what he wants with regard to it. We want to ascertain federation’s stance on this count.” AG Irfan Qadir said November 3, 2007 steps were unnecessary. AG is representative of constitution rather than federation. “It is not possible to give reply to such questions from the court instantly. Reply can be given after reviewing the record.” Satti said Sindh High Court (SHC) verdict was not against Musharraf directly. He was not party to the case then why the
decision came against him. Justice Khilji remarked “you have tried to give this impression that we have been endorsing ultra constitutional steps. Read the other paragraphs of the decision. Court has made it clear that Parliament is not allowed to indemnify the steps ultra vires of the constitutional nor any judge of Supreme Court or high court can give verdict in favor of them. If it is done so then proceedings will be initiated against them under code of conduct. Satti said “decision is seen as a whole. It was not his motive what the court has considered.” He made special mention of LFO by Musharraf saying all the judges had taken oath under PCO and the sitting Chief Justice Iftikhar Muhammad Chaudhry was also among them. SC indemnified all the steps of November 3, 2007 in Iqbal Tikka case and later the reinstated judges of SC nullified it. He further said the court’s objective was to make others realize rather than taking revenge. Justice Khilji Arif said “talks took place between you and Abdul Hamid Dogar.” Satti said “Dogar heard my stance.” He said Musharraf was never heard. “I have not asked for setting aside the decision. Let the federal government do what it has to do. Justice Jawwad remarked “you want this is matter between federation and Musharraf and it be left to federation to leave him or convict him.” Satti said “no, I don’t want so. My objective is that Musharraf ’s trial is not affected due to court’s decisions.” Justice Khilji remarked “respect the court and not utter such remarks which hurt any judge.” Satti said that SC had not ordered initiation of action against Musharraf even it has given decision against him. May be court was providing him opportunity for a passage. Justice Jawwad remarked “we did not do so.” The hearing of the case was adjourned till Monday. –ONLINE
Not voting is a sin, declares Ulema Council TAHIR NIAZ ISLAMABAD: Declaring ballot casting an Islamic obligation, Pakistan Ulema Council on Thursday issued a ‘fatwa’ (Islamic decree) which declared not casting a vote a sin. Emphasizing on the rights of women, the ‘fatwa’ stated that women have equal right to vote and added it was not religion that barred them from voting but the feudal system. It said that non-casting of vote was against the teachings of Islam. The ‘fatwa’ asked those against women’s voting to stop misusing the name of Islam for depriving women of their right to vote. The ‘fatwa’ comes at a time when the banned outfits have warned citizens not to participate in the forthcoming elections. Taliban view the democratic system as unIslamic and asked people, particularly women, to stay away from elections. The women voters are not encouraged in parts of Pakistan particularly in the tribal belt bordering with Afghanistan and also under the influence of Taliban.
TTP distributes threatening pamphlets
Allama Tahir Ashrafi addressing a press conference. –STAFF PHOTO “Since change in Pakistan is possible only through ballot, it is the religious responsibility of every Pakistani to cast his vote because vote-casting is like deposing in a court of law, so concealing evidence is a sin,” said the ‘fatwa’. Chairman Ulema Council, Hafiz Tahir Ashrafi read the edict in the presence of religious leaders and scholars from different schools of
thought and representatives of other religious minorities. The 40-page ‘fatwa’ also stressed that separate polling booths for women should be set up at polling stations as women enjoy equal right to vote as men. “The polling staff should comprise only women where no ‘namehram’ (any man a woman can marry to) is present,” further said the edict.
KARACHI: The outlawed Tehrik-i-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) militant organisation distributed pamphlets in Buner, Peshawar and different areas of Karachi warning citizens not to participate in upcoming elections. Leaflets were distributed in various areas of Karachi warning people against attending political rallies and casting their votes at polling stations. Local administration and security officials were reportedly unaware of any such incident. The pamphlets warned voters that they would themselves be responsible for their own lives. TTP spokesperson Ehsanullah Ehsan said that democracy was un-islamic and was the agenda of secular forces in Pakistan due to which they were opposed to it. He said the militant organization would continue its fight against secular forces and governments which were backed by external secular countries. Similar pamphlets were distributed in Peshawar's Badaber, Mattni and Adizai areas. Leaflets were also received near a mosque in Shingrai in Shalbandi area of Buner warning residents against taking part in upcoming elections. –MONITORING DESK Speaking on the occasion, religious scholars agreed on women’s right to vote, however, differed on the way to cast their vote. Some said the women must not become a tool in elections campaign while others opined there was no harm in women campaigning for their candidates. Speaking about the ‘fatwa’,
Published by Ahmad Waleed from Yasmeen Majeed Printing Press 69 Cricket Stadium Rawalpindi.
Ashrafi told the media that guidance was sought and included in the edict, from scholars like Maulana Mufti Taqi Usmani, Mufti Maulana Muhammad Shafi, Mufti Kifayatullah of Darul Fatawa, Maulana Mufti Abdul Mashkoor Tirmizi and Maulana Mufti Jamil Ahmad.