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Rabi-us-Sani 29, 1434 I Islamabad/Rawalpindi I Vol, V, No. 327 I

Ground broken for ‘peace pipeline’ dream 

Nejad sees no excuse to oppose gas line  Project to complete in 2014  Islamabad asks US to understand country’s energy needs ANIS SHEIKH

GABD: President Asif Ali Zardari and his Iranian counterpart Mahmoud Ahmedinejad pose for the media at the opening ceremony of Iran-Pakistan gas pipeline project. –ONLINE

Nomination papers sent for printing

SNEAK PEEK Rallies shut capital for four hours The federal capital was taken as hostage on Monday as most of its major roads, especially big chowks, remained blocked by protestors who had gathered at different places to demonstrate against the government and in favour of their demands. Page 02

mPs’ body to discuss uS activity at karachi airport Taking cognizance of construction of Tactical Command and Operation Centre Compound at Karachi’s Jinnah International Airport by the American Army, the Parliamentary Committee on National Security will take up the issue on Wednesday. Page 04

Attock district still houses over 20,000 Afghans After the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan in 1979, over three million Afghans took refuge in Pakistan. Attock, which borders Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, is one those districts where the Afghans started living in large numbers. Page 05

Rahim becomes first BD player to hit double century Mushfiqur Rahim on Monday became the first Bangladeshi to crack a double-century while Nasir Hossain hit a maiden ton as the tourists gained a 68run lead in the first Test against SL. Page 11

EC brushes aside objections 

Says time too short  Rules out need for ceremonial nod from president SAEED MINHAS

I SL AM A BAD : Brushing aside the objections of Federal Law Minister Farooq H Naek, Opposition Leader Chaudhry Nisar and without waiting for what they call just a ‘ceremonial’ approval of President Asif Zardari, Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) Monday ordered the printing of nomination papers for the upcoming elections. The proposed nomination papers are seeking from all the elected candidates to declare not only their loans, degrees, defaults, tax details, list of verifiable assets, court cases (both for and against), criminal history (or none of it) and details of their immediate family members. Opposition Leader Ch Nisar had objected to the language of the ECP against the parliamentarians while Law Ministry through Farooq H. Naek had detested the inclusion of new clauses in the nomination papers. Based on the premise of holding free and fair elections as per article 218 of the Constitution, ECP believed that since it’s the responsibility of the Commission to ensure free and fair elections therefore neither objections from the Law Ministry nor delay in approval of the form by the President need to be considered at this time in

point. The ECP official press release says “time is too short therefore printing of nomination papers has been ordered.” Drawing the courage from Supreme Court’s verdict in Worker’s Party case that the ECP “is empowered and independent to do all that is necessary to fulfill its constitutional mandate and instruct that it do so,” ECP has shown the door to Law Ministry officials and presidency on raising objections over the insertion of new clauses in the nomination papers. “Will it start a new tug of war between the PPP and ECP and will Farooq Naek be able to garner enough support of loan defaulters, tax debtors and fake degree holders from within the exisiting assembly remains the question making rounds in capital,” asked an ECP officials while talking to The Spokesman. The ECP had sent its nomination form to the President for approval under section 107 of ROPA on 2nd Feb, 2013. Thereafter, the Commission did not get any response until the meeting with the Federal Law Minister on March 7 in which Mr. Naek raised a number of objections. The ECP asked the Law Minister to submit his objections in writing immediately so that the same may be considered by the ECP.

EU offers observers for elections BRUSSELS: The European Union Monday offered to send observers to Pakistan’s historic elections in May in a bid to ensure a “peaceful, credible” vote that will be “acceptable” to all. “The EU looks forward to upcoming elections that are peaceful, credible, transparent, inclusive and acceptable to the Pakistani people,” European Union foreign ministers said in a statement released after talks. The European Union ministers also said they looked forward to re-energising ties with the next government and hoped quick contacts could lead to a third EU-Pakistan summit. –AGENCIES

GABD, Iran: The presidents of Iran and Pakistan marked the start of construction on a much-delayed gas pipeline on Monday despite the US pressure on Islamabad to back out of the project. Monday's ceremony comes just days before the government's term is set to expire and could be designed to win votes by making the ruling PPP look like it's addressing the energy crisis. Iranian state television showed live footage of President Mahmoud Ahmedinejad and Pakistani President Asif Ali Zardari shaking hands and offering prayers after unveiling a plaque to mark Pakistan's involvement. Alluding to the US, Ahmedinejad accused "foreign elements" of seeking to undermine Iran's relations with Pakistan and to thwart the Islamic Republic's progress by using its nuclear programme as a pretext. "I want to tell those individuals that the gas pipeline has no connection whatsoever with the nuclear case," Ahmedinejad said in a translated address broadcast live on state television that followed the ground-breaking ceremony. "With natural gas you cannot make atomic bombs. That's why they should have no excuse to oppose this pipeline." Iran's deputy oil minister, Javad Owji, told Iranian state television that Tehran already built 900 kilometres (560 miles) of the pipeline, with about 320 kilometres (199 miles) remaining to be built inside Iran. The Pakistan segment of the pipeline is expected to be about 780 kilometres (485 miles). Owji said Iranian contractors will be involved in building the Pakistani portion of the pipeline. Gas is supposed to start flowing in by the end of 2014, although few see that deadline as realistic considering the delays so far in the project. Speaking Monday morning before the president and his entourage left for Iran, a presidential spokesman said the project will have a huge economic impact on Pakistan. "We hope our friends understand our energy needs," said Farhatullah Babar in a veiled reference to the US. "That timing is very important for the PPP because they will build their campaign on this," said Shahid Butt, a senior political analyst from Rajgarh. Dubbed the "peace pipeline", the $7billion project has faced repeated delays since it was conceived in the 1990s to connect Iran's giant South Pars gas field to India via Pakistan.

The US has steadfastly opposed the project, saying it could violate sanctions imposed on Iran over nuclear activities that Washington suspects are aimed at developing a weapons capability. Iran denies this. India quit the project in 2009, citing costs and security issues, a year after it signed a nuclear deal with Washington. Agencies add: President Zardari in his address termed the pipeline project as “very important” for Pakistan. He said the prosperity of Pakistan and Iran was interlinked and the former was striving to become self-reliant. Zardari said the international community was unaware of the problems of regional countries and was not cognizant of appropriate solutions to many issues, adding that the relations between Pakistan and Iran were strengthened through commonality of religion and culture. He said the world peace was correlated with peace in Pakistan and stressed that the country was not against any other state. Nejad said, “The pipeline is the symbol of determination of the two nations,” he said, adding that success was possible through unity of regional states. He said the gas pipeline could be extended to the north of Pakistan as well and his country would also provide electricity to the neighbouring country. The 1,600-kilometre long 42-inch diameter pipeline will enable the import of 21.5 million cubic meters of Iranian natural gas to Pakistan on a daily basis. Iran has already completed the 900-km pipeline in its territory. Tehran-based Tadbir Energy Development Group will undertake all engineering procurement and construction work for the first segment of the project, which starts from the Iran-Pakistan border. The Iranian firm will also carry out the second segment of the project, while the remaining amount is expected to be generated by Pakistan through Gas Infrastructure Development Cess (GIDC).

Stocks lose 400 points over sanction fears Karachi stock market plummeted over 400 points on Monday, the same day as the Pakistani president and his Iranian counterpart inaugurated construction work on a much delayed pipeline between the two countries, despite repeated warnings of American sanctions.

Details on Business page

AGP report on Joseph colony rejected

SC takes Punjab govt to task MASOOD REHMAN ISLAMABAD: Rejecting a Punjab government report on the Joseph Colony incident, the Supreme Court Monday took the Punjab government and police authorities to task by observing that there was complete retreat of State in what happened at Badami Bagh incident. The court sought a fresh and comprehensive report and observed that politics at the cost of poor people would not be allowed. A three-member bench led by Chief Justice Iftikhar Muhammad Chaudhry rejected the report on the grounds that it did not mention the reasons behind the incident and the action taken against the perpetrators.

Appearing on notice, Punjab Advocate General Ashtar Ausaf Ali presented before the court a preliminary report of the incident, according to which compensation had been paid to the victims of Joseph Colony. Besides, 150 suspects had been arrested for allegedly being involved in the arson attack on Christians’ houses and additional police personnel had been deployed at the Joseph Colony to maintain law and order situation. During the hearing, the chief justice remarked that providing compensation was government's responsibility and asked why precautionary measures were not taken if there was information pertaining to the attack. He said IG should have quit if he was not aware of the developments. He said the IG police,

CCPO and SP City had failed to provide security to the citizens, despite having prior information about the incident. He said police seemed more engaged in providing protection to the criminals. Reprimanding the acting IG Punjab, the chief justice remarked as to why the police chief was not trying to get to the facts of the matter and whether he was capable of performing his duties. He also inquired that why security measures had not been employed when there were reports of trouble in the area. The court summoned a report from the commission on the Gojra riots and asked why the findings of the commission were not made public. The court noted that the police failed to protect the citizens and if their negligence was proved, action will be taken against them.

PPP activist flaunts Benazir’s picture to intimidate CDA SALMAN ABBAS

I SL AM ABAD: Drawing strength from his affiliation with the ruling party Pakistan People's Party, PPP activist Moon Shah has established a banquet hall and a showroom illegally on a large plot of land in front of BhekaSyedan village near the affluent Sector F/11 in the capital and named the place ‘Benazir House’, apparently to intimidate civic authorities away from evicting him. Despite his blatant violation of CDA by-laws, the Capital Development Authority (CDA) seems reluctant to take action against him.Such commercial

activity in residential areas has been declared illegal by the CDA. But tarnishing the PPP's image most is that Moon has displayed a picture of late Benazir Bhutto outside the place. Neighbourstold The Spokesman that there was a regular house at the said place prior to the PPP coming into government but once the PPP came into power, Moon Shah renovated the place and converted it into a banquet hall, causing inconvenience to the residents who now have to bear a lot of noise late into the night. They said Moon built a car showroom next door some three months ago. People's Party flags

fly on the building and a signboard with slain PPP leader Benazir Bhutto's picture adorns the facade. Moon Shahsaid the place was his ancestral house but he renovated it as a banquet hall and showroom within the bounds of BhekaSyedan village, so the CDA could not impose its byelaws on him. He added that the CDA acted against him some months ago and demolished a wall of the house. “I am a PPP worker but despite being an activist of the ruling party, CDA has taken action against me,for which they will face the consequences,” said Moon. CDA Director Enforcement

Naveedul Haq was not available for comment but CDA sources said that some senior officials from the Land Directorate were supporting the dwellers of Bheka Syedan, "including a PPP worker", due to which action could not be taken against him. He said CDAhad the authority to take action against all types of illegal civic activity in Bheka Syedan. CDA Director General (Planning) Ghulam Sarwar Sandhu told The Spokesman CDA's comments to the media were restricted. On being pressed, he just said that the CDA had right to take action against nonconforming use of houses in the city, including in Bheka Syedan.


Rligious scholars, students demonstrating at D-Chowk against killings. ONLINE

Non-teaching staff of different educational institutes continue protest on 5th day. ONLINE

FATA Mobile Health Hospital Programme workers demonstrating at Press Club. ONLINE

Rallies shut capital for four hours HOMER BALOCH

ISLAMABAD: The federal capital was taken as hostage on Monday as most of its major roads, especially big chowks, remained blocked by protestors who had gathered at different places to demonstrate against the government and in favour of their demands. The first and the biggest protest rally was brought out by the nonteaching staff of different educational institutes. On Monday, they continued their protest on 5th day by blocking the highway at Peshawar

Morr for about four hours. Hundreds of the employees started their march from Federal Directorate of Education and gathered at the Kashmir Highway where they raised slogans against the authorities. They also tried to stop different vehicles passing by them, which provoked the passengers resulting minor clashes between them. Joint Action Committee Chairman Mohammad Sadaquat Abbas while talking to The Spokesman said that the authorities are not paying attention over their issues and are keeping silence. He said that they are demanding for their rights which are

Capital spring tree plantation starts today ISLAMABAD: The Capital Development Authority is all set to launch its spring tree plantation campaign from today (Tuesday). CDA Chairman Syed Tahir Shahbaz would inaugurate the campaign. In this connection, a walk would be held which will start from Margalla Road F-11/3 to the planting site E-11/4. Representatives from civil Society, Traders union Educational Institution, NGOs, Environmentalists, employees from different ministries and divisions, CDA officers and large number of general public would be involved in this campaign. ONLINE

CDA silent on illegal wedding functions ISLAMABAD: Wedding ceremonies are being arranged illegally in the public parks, roads and playgrounds of the federal capital creating problems for the people. To add to this, laws prohibiting fireworks and aerial firing are being violated frequently in the Sectors of G-6, G-7, G-8, G-9, G-10, I-10, I-9 and other areas. CDA officials were contacted to take their stance on the issue but they could not be reached. ONLINE

educational allowances, non teaching time pay-scale, and new vacancies, but still the authorities are treating us like we are demanding like something illegal. “During our protest, we did not hurt children and their studies; we only boycotted the administrative work of educational institutes,” he said and added that although they tried their best to control the crowd, some employees misbehaved with the public. In the second protest, different religious scholars of ‘Wafaq-alMadaris’ and students of Madrassas staged a demonstration on D-Chowk

against the killings of many scholars and students throughout the country. In order to record their demonstration in a different way, the teachers of different Madrassas held their classes on the Jinnah Avenue, where hundreds of students from Taxila, Rawalpindi and other areas were the attendant. The teachers taught the students for more than hours while sitting on the main avenue under the sky. The scholars while demonstrating condemn the sectarian killings by saying that those who have the Holy Book in their hands are not terrorists. They further said that before this, the

Baulky investigating officer replaced on PM&DC management’s complaint

ISL AM ABAD: Six more cases of fake registration by ex-PM&DC registrar have come to the knowledge of the PM&DC management, The Spokesman learnt on Monday. The number of fake registrations now stands at 40. An official, requesting anonymity, told The Spokesman that more cases are still expected to emerge as Dr. Ahmad Nadeem Akbar issued fake registrations to various people by misusing his authority. “In these cases, the actual records of the registered doctors have been tempered in a confusing way,” the official said. He revealed that in the bogus registration documents, university of the registration certificate holder has been mentioned a foreign university whereas the college they attended is local. Another official while talking to The Spokesman said that Dr. Akbar possesses

domiciles from three different areas - Sialkot, Karachi and Islamabad, which is also illegal. According to him, Dr. Akbar issued the bogus registration certificates “just to increase the number of his supporters who could vote for him to get PM&DC council memberships. Two FIRs have already been lodged against Dr. Ahmad Nadeem Akbar, and lodging of the third FIR will depend on appearance of further cases and of their nature, the official added. Dr. Ahmad Nadeem Akbar, who succeeded in securing a pre-arrest bail for his first FIR, is still to be arrested by the Ramna Police for the second FIR. SHO Abid Hussain said that police have raided his home on Margalla Road as well as many other places to arrest him. Meanwhile, Sub-Inspector Muneer Hussain, the investigating officer, has been replaced by SubInspector Yaseen Bhutta on a complaint by the PM&DC management stating that the earlier IO was not cooperating with them.

ISLAMABAD: Prime Minister Raja Pervez Ashraf‚ on the recommendations of Central Selection Board‚ has approved the promotions of 103 officers belonging to different services and group. According to state media, this include among others promotion of six officers of Foreign Service from BS-19 to 20; four of Information Group from BS-20 to BS-21; four from BS-20 to 21 and another five from BS-19 to 20 in Intelligence Bureau; two officers from BS-20 to 21 and one from BS-19 to 20 in Military Land and Cantonment Group; 21 officers of Pakistan Audit and Accounts Service from BS-19 to 20; 23 officers of Inland Revenue Service from BS-19 to 20; 12 officers of Pakistan Audit and Accounts Service from BS-20 to 21; and 5 officers of Foreign Service from BS-20 to 21. ONLINE

Youth commits suicide ISLAMABAD: Noor Muhammad, 36, committed suicide for unknown reasons in the area of Ali Pur on Monday. As per Koral police, Mubarak Ali, the father of the deceased while recording his statement, said that his son had shot himself dead. He said he did not want to have any postmortem done. The police in the wake of statement of father of the deceased have registered report declaring the death a suicide incident. ONLINE

Canadian singer Tariq Bobby addressing a press conference at National Press Club. ONLINE

ISLAMABAD: Citizens have demanded introduction of metro bus system on routes between the twin cities of Islamabad and Rawalpindi to overcome transport problem. Underlining their transport related woes, the citizens said that acute shortage of public transport and highhandedness of drivers and owners of wagons have compounded their miseries. The drivers allow those commuters to sit in the wagons who agree to travel to the wagon stops under the choice of the drivers and not their real destinations and they don’t complete the routes. Due to non completion of routes by the public transport drivers, the government and private sector employees are unable to arrive in their offices in time. The Capital Development Authority had announced to run 100 CNG buses besides providing quality transport to the citizens but all these announcements have proved empty slogans and a lip service. Bus service on the pattern of metro bus service in Lahore be launched on the routes between Islamabad and Pind. ONLINE

$2.62m from Japan to fight polio

103 officers promoted

Akira Kono, Charge d'Affaires of Japan and Karen Allen, UNICEF Deputy Representative in Pakistan exchange documents after the signing ceremony of Inter-Provincial Coordination. —ONLINE OUR STAFF REPORTER

ISLAM ABAD: The Japan government has decided to extend a grant of 226 million yen ($2.62 million) to Pakistan through the UN International Children's Emergency Fund to

support the polio-eradication programme. About two million dollars, out of the total grant, will cover the procurement of polio vaccine and the rest will meet the cost of social mobilisation activities. Japan’s Chargé d’Affaires Akira Kono and UNICEF Deputy

regularised. He further said that they have also submitted their application to the concerned authorities but they showed no response, for which they are demonstrating peacefully. Yet another demonstration, by the employees of Special Education progamme, was witnessed outside Islamabad Press Club. They demanded that the employees of Special Education Department should be awarded 100 percent of Special Education Allowances. They also said that they refuse the discrimination in which the special education department is being ignored by the higher authorities.

Metro bus service Pakistan to demanded in eliminate twin cities human

Fake registrations by ex-registrar swell to 40 HOMER BALOCH

D-Chowk has been used for different sort of protests but it is the first time when the scholars are using it to teach their students as well as to demonstrate peacefully. In the third rally, the employees of different health programmes of FATA, including Mobile Health Hospital Programme, also demonstrated in front of Islamabad Press club by demanding the regularisation of the employees. Abdul Haq, the electro medical engineer by profession, told The Spokesman that the employees are working on contracts for the last ten years and now it is their right to be

Representative Karen Allen signed and exchanged the documents. Ministry of Inter-Provincial Coordination Secretary Faridullah Khan was also present to witness the signing. Japan has focused on polio eradication as a global challenge on public health of the human race. Since 1996, Japan has provided grant assistance for the polio eradication every year through UNICEF and these efforts have accumulated to approximately $91 million including today’s signing. In 2011, Japan renewed its commitment to this endeavour by providing a soft loan of approximately $65 million in order to make Pakistan a polio-fee country. In his remarks at the signing ceremony, Kono said that Japan’s commitment and strong partnership with polio infected countries as well as development partners would continue until the day of complete eradication of polio from the world. Kono took the opportunity of the signing to renew Japan’s gratitude to the international community including Pakistan for support to Japan after the Great East Japan Earthquake and subsequent tsunami which took place on March 11, 2011, exactly two years ago. Today’s signing, according to Kono, showed how Japan has continued its commitment to socioeconomic well-being in the world despite the challenging situation in Japan.

trafficking ISL AMABAD: Australian Prime Minister's Special Envoy Air Chief Marshal (retd) Angus Houston called on Prime Minister Raja Pervez Ashraf at the PM’s House on Monday and discussed issues related to human trafficking. The PM said that Australia and Pakistan enjoyed good relations and had remarkable cooperation in various areas. Appreciating the keen interest and full support of the Australian government, the prime minister said that the people of Pakistan appreciated the assistance provided by the government of Australia, especially for establishing facilitation centers. He said that Pakistan was committed to the Bali Process and eliminating sufferings caused due to human trafficking. Angus Houston recalled the close relationship and the importance attached to relations with Australia. He briefed Raja about the policies and efforts being made by the Australian government to check human trafficking and reiterated that Australia would work closely with Pakistan to reduce human trafficking. APP

Non-Muslims equal citizens, says PM Raja ISLAMABAD: Senator Haman Das and Senator Amar Jeet Malhotra Monday called on Prime Minister Raja Pervez Ashraf at the PM House and discussed issues pertaining to non-Muslim Pakistanis. The senators welcomed the federal government’s announcement to provide assistance to the Christian families affected in the incident. The prime minister said that the Constitution of the country guarantees equal rights for all citizen of the country irrespective of their caste, colour or creed. He assured that the government would take all steps to safeguard the lives and properties of non-Muslim Pakistanis. He said that his government is taking all steps for the welfare of the non-Muslim Pakistanis and has taken practical steps in this regard. ONLINE

Simplest lawns now passion of the elite SHANEL KHALIQ

ISLAMABAD: As summer approaches, lawn exhibitions have hit the market in all nooks and corners of the capital city. The lawn exhibitions are categorised by an overcrowding, hoopla and jostling that one has never witnessed before. The venue presents a picture of complete chaos with women pushing each other and heading across to seize the limited number of pieces available. Courtesy and mannerisms are seldom witnessed at these exhibitions and the scene is quite similar to one that could be witnessed at any emergency situation. The

concept of these lawn exhibitions is a relatively new one. Before the last decade, lawn was a simple and casual fabric worn in summers to save oneself of the scorching weather and it was also not a burden on the pocket. Lawn was the cheapest and most affordable cloth available in the market and was worn by elites and commoners alike. It was always characterised by elaborate prints wither floral or geometric and perhaps these made lawn the perfect blessing; comfort with beauty available at a reasonable price. Ever since designer labels started launching their own lawn collections, this whole idea


took a 360 degree turn. No one could have imagined a few years ago how this would become a fad beyond control. The fabric that was once the most affordable went beyond reach for the common person. The idea of using marketing strategies to build up the wait and then finally to hold an exhibition to launch the collection worked well for the designers who are now making millions only through the sale lawn. It started with a few brands specialising in lawn and soon every designer and every label followed suit and today there are hundreds beyond doubt. The whole concept has changed altogether. The fabric is the same,

more or less the patterns and the colour combinations are also the same but what has changed is the price. Lawn is perhaps one of those commodities that the inflation has hit the hardest. It could easily be ranked next to petrol in the price increase! Another phenomenon that has occurred alongside is the making of copies of these “designer prints.” All one needs to do is to visit the less elitist sectors and the markets there are also flooded with lawn in the same designs. The only difference is that the prices are reasonable and these shops are giving the commoners a chance to buy the same luxury which they cannot afford.



Kramer versus Malik Riaz—not again-IX 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


Lobbying for Sheikh intensifies he lobbying for Hafeez Sheikh as the caretaker Prime Minister seemed to have accelerated. The PPP has reduced its candidates to just one— the Sheikh. PML (N) is also being pressured to accept him—and not


just by the PPP. The whole rationale is being built around him as the savior of the economy in the days to come. The eventual deal with the IMF at the end of the day is being seen as a done deal. The Yanks too would like to have their own person at the helm in troubling times ahead. After all, a lot seem to be happening close to their withdrawal from Afghanistan. The antennas are buzzing after Gwadar being given to China and now the gas pipeline from Iran, not to forget Karzai’s sterness shown to the new Secretary of Defence. Who knows things might deteriorate and the Americans might need here somebody they know better. Ishaq Dar is being convinced on this. After all, he understands the economic requirements better. In any case, the last two IMF programmes were also signed during the caretaker governments as no elected government would like to own that. So why not cry ‘wolf ’ and have your future problems straightened out and also please the Americans at the same time. Malik Riaz seemed to have suddenly developed some soft corner for Shakirullah Jan but so far, Hafeez Sheikh it is.

Farooq Hameed Khan @FarooqHKhan @arsched more terrorist attks in Pakistan likely as Iran Pak pipeline proj kicks off. US sanctions be met with blocking US/NATO supplies Imran @ImranSaeedKhan1 Proud momoents in Pak history with an independent foreign policy decsion! Iran-Pak gas pipeline. Zardari sb big thank u & congrats PPP! Rabia Anum @RabiaAnumGeo Proud Moment and President Asif Zardari Deserves a Big Thankyou:) Congrats PPP :) LOng live this Friendship and this Project#PIGasPipeline Dr Shahid Masood @Shahidmasooddr Why the Puppet Balochistan Assembly was not restored before signing the Gwadar Port Deal and now The Pak-Iran Pipeline by Federal Govt? Junaid Qaiser @JunaidQaiser #IPGasPipeline This dream only becomes reality with the vision, bravery & the reconciliatory politics of president #Zardari. Asad Munir @asadmunir38 Amriki Pakistan Ko Meli Aank Se Dekh Rahay Thay,Zardari Ne Un Ki Aankh Me Aankh Dall Ker Baat Ki- DPC should now support him.

Politically Incorrect

alik Riaz has pulled another rabbit out of his Bahria hat. As the Abu Dhabi Group backs out of the $45 billion deal that never existed in the first place — enter Thomas Kramer. the Amir Mateen Again, same dazzling picture of the world class retreat, encompassing the world’s tallest building 3.5 km off the Karachi coast was painted. Only the protagonist of the fairy tale was changed from the Abu Dhabi Group to US investor Thomas Kramer. Geo TV quoted Bahria Town spokesman claiming that Kramer had committed $15 to 20 billion investment in developing “Bodha Island city,” which will have “Net City, Education City, Health City, Port City and other infrastructure projects.” The spokesman claimed, “the worlds’ most modern shopping mall will also be built” and link Karachi to the Island through a sixlane bridge. Interestingly, the same group had published news on Monday, quoting the same spokesman, who bragged about an investment of 15 to 20 billion ‘rupees.’ During the day, rupees turned into dollars. This goes without saying that the news was written by the same Editor of their Urdu daily who had authored the earlier ten such Bahria statements-turnednews. Bahria finds it more convenient to let its mega projects be announced through news instead of advertisements. We don’t know whether it costs the same or more but something fishy is going on here — yet again. What is the real deal behind it? Who is putting in how much money? Is this project legal? What are Malik Riaz’s credentials to do this project, which has been advertised twice earlier? Is this another photo-up intended to fleece investors? Who will guarantee that the public will not be duped this time? Bahria’s is yet to explain its earlier goof-up. Its advertisements to cover up in the name of “national interests,”


and an explanation authored by the same Urdu newspaper Editor, were shoddy. Merely saying that PML-N leader Chaudhary Nisar got the deal cancelled amounted to insulting everybody’s intelligence. Bahria is yet to explain why it used the name of the Abu Dhabi Group as the partner where it had signed an MoU with a much smaller Dhabi Contracting, which “showed mere interest” with no financial commitment. We may have the right to think that the same drama might be at play again. Thomas Kramer, better known as TK, is being presented in the same glamourous way through carefully ‘leaked’ news. The project may not materialize in the declared 10 to 15 years but will allow its promoter to fleece the public by the hype built around it. Bahria has already been fined by regulatory government organisations for fraudulent advertising and illegally receiving money in advance before the commencement of the project. This project has all the ingredients of a

scam. Consider. The very land on which this dream project is supposed to stand is shaky. Serious doubts exists how Bahria was given the Letter of Intent (LoI) for developing the island by Port Qasim Authority (PQA). Transparency International (TI) has filed serious objections repeatedly before the PQA Chairman, Vice Admiral (R) Muhammad Shafi. It’s only a matter of time that this issue will come before the courts as the whole deal smacks of — trust Malik Riaz — the shady maneuvering. TI maintains that the whole tender was tailored to award the contract to Bahria Town, which should have been disqualified before being considered. Here’s why: TI questions that how could the PQA give the project to a company that had been “declared by three

statuary and regulatory authorities the Federal Tax Ombudsman, the Security Exchange Commission of Pakistan and the Lahore Development Authority - as cheats and frauds.” TI quotes the State bank of Pakistan and the SECP which issued advertisements on February 23 warning that “the public should beware and not be misled by the fraudulent activities of deposit, loan, and investments through such advertisement. TI took strong exception to the prequalification criterion adopted by the PQA despite 10 serious cases of default and litigation faced by Bahria Town. It mentions, among other things, the maximum fine imposed by the SECP against Bahria Town for “fraudulent practices” in the case of its housing scheme Margalla Enclave. Bahria Town, it says, took advance money from investors illegally, besides the tax evasion of Rs 119 billion as mentioned by the Federal Tax Ombudsman. The report lies with the Federal Bureau of Revenue and may be taken up by the next government to recover this huge amount from Malik Riaz. May be! TI mentions numerous cases where Malik Riaz has been found involved in, to name a few, “corruption, black-mailing, extortion, land-grabbing, forgery, fabrication of evidence.” The list of the TI objections is long but particularly mentions the helplessness of the State that cannot change one Tehsildar, namely, Imtiaz Pervez Janjua, who remained posted on one job since 1998. So where does this leave the glamourous project? Frankly, it suits all the players. Malik Riaz got the island through dubious means and will not mind to give a huge stake to the American investors. Money will come from the public who are already being shown the dreamy image of the recreated Miami. The media story flashed on Monday shed light on the dazzling projects that Kramer had accomplished in Florida and he turned around the pirates den across Cuba into one of the pricest real estate in the US. And why should Kramer not be interested. He gets a good deal — the island, the naive public dying to book an apartment in the dream world, the conniving or silent media, the official approvals —

for just showing up. “Why the hell, not,” Kramer must have told all the detractors who must have pointed out the Abu Dhabi fiasco. But the Abu Dhabi Group partly represented the government with had huge stakes in Pakistan to be seen responsible for any scam here. Kramer is a venture capitalist who made his riches through people like Malik Riaz. Yes, the problem might not get through because of the legal constraints; the next government might not be so obliging to Malik Riaz; the courts might come after the Malik again; Malik Riaz, who has already shown a huge loss in his books, may not have any money to fund the project; he might just run

Mojaan hi Mojaan for babus-VIII

Mad race to get Grade 22  40 extra officers promoted to 21 for Zardari brother-in-law n the mad rush to oblige as many as possible, the PPP government has promoted extra 40 officers from Grade 20 to 21 just to promote President Asif Zardari’s brother-in-law, Fazlullah Pechuho. Fazlullah was at number-132 down the promotion ladder but a dubious board was created to promote him. What if this may have elevated a few undeserving dozens besides killing the chances of many abler officers who were caught off-guard? This set into motion a wave of sulking among deserving officers from Peshawer to Karachi, many of whom had not done their courses in time. This may have been one of its-kind operation where, over night, such a huge number of offi-


cers were elevated in absolute disregard of all procedures. In sum, over 100 officers got promoted to Grade 21, nearly 84 of them from just one group alone—the all-powerful District Management Group (DMG) now called as Pakistan Administrative Service (PAS). Already, over 170 officers wait in Grade 21 to be promoted. Imagine the strength of the exclusive Club of grade 22 officers if the trend continues. The Club-22 already stand at around 60 if one includes those rehired on contract—the likes of fossilized Salman Farooquis who will never give way. More important, Prime Minister Pervaiz Ashraf is being pressured to promote another

batch of officers to Grade 22 before he leaves. The PM had already obliged his sons-in-law and it was now his time to reciprocate. A board meeting was scheduled to take place on Monday to get the beleaguered PM do this final job, among a host of other hasty steps he may have taken in the last days of the government. One such thing was to allow two plots to each member of the exclusive Club of Grade 22 officers. Another was to allow salary increases to elite departments. The bureaucrats who wants their promotion to Grade 22 at every cost—for many this is the last chance—the agenda could not be achieved today but they have not given up. A new effort will be made on Tuesday to get the job done

It’s my way or highway ZEESHAN JAVID ISLAMABAD: It’s my way or the highway seems to be the message emanating from the courtyards of the chief ministership of Punjab as a DCO from Muzaffargarh had to pack up his luggage and make room for another officer just for refusing to raise funds for the party jalsa (rally) in his district on March 9. The district which happens to have earned headlines because of not only Mukhtaran Mai but also because of our versatile foreign minister and his family clan Khars, degree famed Jamshed Dasti and Qayyum Jatoi who was heard saying it a bit loud that corruption was as much justified for the politicians as it was for the army ruling elite. Since party loyalists wanted Mian Shahbaz Sharif to raise his arching fore-finger and listen to his maturing art of singing Jalib’s inqilabi (provocational) verses by inviting him to hold a political rally in the city centre. “Main Nahi Manta” the verse which Mian sahib, of late, has devoted for himself seems to have fell hard on DCO Mirza because when he tried to sing the same without cameras flashing on him and without disturbing the microphones or the sweeping aside the pedestal in front of the local party workers by refusing to foot over four

TK comes in Town

million for a political rally of the Punjab ruler. It’s an open secret now that all political parties have officially triggered off their election campaigns by using available official resources across the country, therefore, such an effort is no more seen as a pre-poll rigging because neither ECP nor chief justice has raised any eyebrows on this, especially when it comes from Punjab’s pasture lands. Nevertheless, the desire of PML (N leadership to have one more show

before the bells of exit starts ringing for them in a week’s time, ended the road for one officer while paving the way for another, Arshad Awan, to take charge of DCO office in Muzaffargarh by not only showing complete allegiance to the court-yards and ensuring to deliver on the wish-list of ruling elite. A party insider from Circuit House Muzaffargarh informed The Spokesman that PML-N authorized Saif-ul-Malook Khokhar a party member of Punjab Assembly to make

arrangements for the rally of Khadame-Aala Punjab in Muzaffargarh on March 9. He informed that in the context of rally, a high level meeting was held in Circuit House which was attended by PML-N’s district leadership as well as administrative machinery of district Muzaffargarh to review the arrangements. However, as usual, the party leaders ended up pushing and shoving each other when it came to collection of funds for the arrangements. Following a classic mayhem, where abuses were hurled and accusations were exchanged besides some physical activity, the wily political party leaders decided to throw it upon the incumbent DCO to raise the funds showing it as an official engagement of his political boss in the districts. A district party leader on condition of anonymity informed that apart from a local party leader Arshad Javaid Godaar none came up with any financial pledge, therefore, it was agreed that DCO would have to arrange for 1500 chairs, tents, red carpets and food to ensure that everyone can get a chance to have a look at the singing and mike dancing of Mian Shahbaz Sharif. He said that wise-guys of the district even tried to fleece the party contenders and even refused to

away in the end. Malik Riaz might just use him for building the hype for his other projects, which might bring him the money required for this one. But then, who cares. He would make sure that Malik Riaz compensates him enough even if it turned out to be just a photo-op. The good old TK had been accused of three bad things in the US: Illegal election financing for which he paid heavy fines after pleading guilty; gentrification, which basically means enriching the elite by pulverizing the lower strata of the society and, finally, yelling on TV. He does have a lot in common with Malik Riaz. Investors beware.

whatever it takes. Who cares how this will impact the structure of the bureaucracy; how its top will become so heavy with so much extra expense; how will the state constantly bear the constant ballooning of the bureaucratic size. All of this in times when we are trying to have devolution of resources to the provinces. Yet nobody is willing to go to FATA, let alone Balochistan. It seems there is no end to their greed as they keep crating their own vacancies. We are told the provinces were asked to seek more posts so that Fazlullah could be adjusted. The provinces were asked to multiply their demand as the number was much short of the requirement. Such is the camaraderie among the babus that nobody in the province protested at such outrage. The more the better seems the mantra. Until the final reports came in, the decision has been challenged in the courts. But those who want to be in grade 22 before this week are all set to make it happen. Hectic lobbying was on till the filing of this report. The officers who are in the race include those who have been in jail for corruption charges; another one is not even from provincial service. —AMIR MATEEN

A DCO has dared to say no to lay red carpet for the CM Punjab, DCO received a transfer orders immediately. The vacant position was henceforth filled with another one waiting in line to ensure the royal jalsa for the CM. Abrar Mirza was the one who also opposed the misappropriation in distribution of laptops amongst the students of postgraduate college district Muzaffargarh.

entertain the request from Hina Rabbani Khar’s relative, Rafique Khar, who also happens to be the former tehsil Nazim from Kot Addu to bear the expenses but only if the venue is shifted from city centre to his area of interest; i.e. Kot Addu. Once Abrar Mirza refused by singing “Zulm key zabtey” (harsh rules of injustices), the party leaders ganged up against him and conveyed it to the party leaders in Model Town’s control room (controlled by Tariq Azeem and

Ahsan Iqbal these day) that a DCO has dared to say no to lay red carpet for the CM Punjab, DCO received a transfer orders immediately. The vacant position was henceforth filled with another one waiting in line to ensure the royal jalsa for the CM. Abrar Mirza was the one who also opposed the misappropriation in distribution of laptops amongst the students of postgraduate college district Muzaffargarh. He had already sinned once by taking the bureaucratic regime of education sector to task by holding an inquiry against the officers including principal of the college Khalil-ur-Rehman Farooqi, deputy director colleges Malik Bashir and some others for depriving 51 brilliant students from getting their deserved laptops during the distribution ceremony honoured by CM himself, just a day before the proposed political rally in the same area. May be as a reward, now the removed DCO has been asked to immediately report to the education secretary as additional secretary schools so that he can no more pursue even the inquiry in misappropriation of laptops. When contacted, the victimized DCO hesitantly denied saying that he was not instrumental in any way for the incidents at Circuit House in Muzaffargarh nor for the ultimate postponement of the proposed jalsa. So the final news is that Jalsa could not be held and viewers could not see CM Punjab in action against a standing dais, jingling microphones and hapless audiences from Muzaffargarh.


No ‘open book’ symbol for JUI-F for now PIA employees demand increase in pension ISLAMABAD: The general body of PIA's retired employees demanded immediate increase in the pension of retired employees of the airline as only once in a decade the increase was given to them. Pakistan International Airlines' Retired Employees Association President Syed Tahir Hassan presided over the general body meeting of the association which was well attended by huge number of retired employees along with foreign and outstation representatives. Currently, the national airline gives its employees 32 percent of their total salary as pension but the formula it applies in the end makes the pension calculated on their basic pays. So the airline should either give them 50 percent pension on the basic pay or make the 32 percent pension to be given on their total salaries. “According to the rules, the PIA Pension Trust Fund should have Rs 25 billion to Rs 35 billion earmarked for the retired employees of the national airline. So any increase in the pensions will not affect the PIA's budget,” he reasoned. ONLINE

IHC seeks para-wise comments from ECP secretary over issue


ISLAMABAD: The Islamabad High Court on Monday stayed the decision of the Election Commission for allotting an open book as election symbol to the Jamiat Ulema-e-Islam-F and sought para-wise comments from the ECP secretary over the issue. A division bench comprising Chief Justice Anwar Khan Kasi and Justice Shaukat Aziz Siddique was hearing the case filed by JUI-F General Secretary Maulana Abdul Ghafoor Haideri in which he contended that JUI-F had been

contesting elections since 1996 with closed book as the election symbol, but now the EC changed his party’s election symbol without any justification. In the petition, the JUI-F leader requested the court to direct the election body for allotting his party the closed book as party supporters have affiliation with this symbol. It is pertinent to mention here that following public’s complaints against the JUI-F chief and his candidates, the EC has swapped the book with open one with some alphabets and digits. The EC official says that they

received complaints that people were given impression during the last elections that the symbol was a gateway to heaven. Haideri submitted through his counsel that symbol of the closed book was being used by JUI-F for the last three general elections and the same has been changed by the EC without summoning or hearing them. He stated that no material was available on record regarding any complaint by a person or political party to the effect that the closed book has been used for some other purposes as complained by an

official of respondent namely Azhar Abbas, adding that when the application to correct the wrong was made, the respondent failed to exercise the jurisdiction vested to it. He contended that it was not known that under which law the alteration in the symbol of ‘book’ has been made. Justice Siddique remarked that “why you want to close the book despite the fact that one can gain or read nothing from the closed book.” After the arguments, the court stayed the EC’s decision and sought comment from the respondent.

SC petition seeks contempt proceedings against Qaim ISLAMABAD: A petition demanding contempt of court proceedings against Chief Minister of Sindh, Qaim Ali Shah, has been filed in the Supreme Court. Mehmood Akhtar Naqvi has filed the petition, in which Chief Minister of Sindh, Speaker of the Sindh Assembly and Election Commission, Sindh, have been named as relevant parties. The petitioner holds the stance that Chief Minister Qaim Ali Shah discussed the conduct of superior judiciary in the Sindh Assembly. Under Article 114 of the Constitution, the conduct of superior judiciary could not be discussed in the provincial assembly, he maintained. Therefore, Qaim Ali Shah should be disqualified for lifetime from holding any public office, and be declared as traitor, the petitioner appeals. ONLINE

10 arrested in Orangi Town KARACHI: Police apprehended 10 suspects in Mominabad, Orangi Town on late Sunday night. According to Media Reports, police said the raid was conducted in Faqir Colony on the information about presence of miscreants in the area. During the action, 10 suspects were arrested. Further investigation is underway. Online Meanwhile, Mutahida Qaumi Movement Organizational Committee has said that everyone knows who is patronizing criminal elements in Karachi. Member of the MQM’s local organizational committee said in Karachi that up till government officials will continue patronizing the criminal elements, till then crimes would not come to an end in the metropolis. Criminal groups are involved in all crimes including money extortion, kidnap for ransom in the city while government representatives are openly supporting these professional criminals here, added the MQM organizational committee. ONLINE

PTI accuses PML-N of deal with terrorists LAHORE: The agreement of PML-N with extremist groups and criminal neglect by Punjab government to prevent terrorist incidents is becoming more and more visible every day. This was said by the Pakistan Tehreek-eInsaf Information Secretary Shafqat Mahmood in a statement issued on Monday. He said Punjab government should respond these questions that why it did not take any solid measure to prevent Badami Bagh incident , when it had the prior knowledge regarding the incident and after the incident why did the police acted as bystanders and did nothing to help the affected victims. It seems a obvious deliberate move and there was not even a single reason that police did not intervene. He said that earlier Gojra incident took place iin which a similar attack was launched on the Christian community, at that time Punjab government not only made no attempt to stop the violence but also no real efforts were made later on to hold the criminals to account. ONLINE

Senate body orders return of NADRA employees OUR STAFF REPORTER

ISLAMABAD: The Senate Standing Committee for Water and Power, taking notice of promotions in the National Transmission Dispatch Company on Monday, directed officials concerned to ensure return of those NADRA employees who had joined the Water and Power Development Authority on deputation. The meeting held under the chairmanship of Senator Zahid Khan here in the Parliament House. Besides members, officials of Water and Power Ministry, WAPDA and NTDC were present in the meeting. The committee has sought details of promotions in NTDC. The WAPDA secretary assured the lawmakers that he would present all relevant details on promotions to the committee soon. During the meeting, the committee has issued directions for compensating the bereaved family members of those labourers who got injured or were killed during the Jene power plant tragic accident. Briefing the committee about various energy projects, WAPDA Secretary Sikander Ahmed Roy said that USAID had issued $31 million for Kurram Tangi Dam and that the work on the dam would be completed by March 2014. Senator Zahid Khan has called the meeting of the committee on March 22.

SC bench hears Adnan Khawaja case OUR STAFF REPORTER

KARACHI: Missionary schools were closed on Monday in protest against Lahore arson incident. ONLINE

MPs’ body to discuss US activity at Karachi airport ISL AM ABAD: cognizance of Taking construction of Tactical Command and Operation Centre Compound at Karachi’s Jinnah International Airport by the American Army, the Parliamentary Committee on National Security has convened an important meeting on Wednesday to take up the issue. The committee has swung into action after reports of the construction surfaced in media on February 26. In response of these reports, both secretary defence and spokesman of the foreign ministry, while speaking to media, had said that they did not have proper information about the development. Then on the last of day of the last month, the American embassy issued a statement about Pakistani Customs Drug Enforcement Cell Project. It was stated that at the request of the Pakistan government, specifically the

Customs Drug Enforcement Cell, the US Department of Defense was funding the construction of the centre at Jinnah International Airport. The US Army Corps of Engineers’ recently announced intent to solicit a Request for Proposals for the project using the US Government Federal Business Opportunities website. The award for the project will be completed in the summer of 2014. This had sparked a heated debate in the Upper House of the Parliament, which had also resulted in exchange of hot words between PCNS Chairman Mian Raza Rabbani and Senate Chairman Nayyar Hussain Bokhari, resultantly, Rabbani staged a walkout from the House for not letting his sentiments be expressed. Even Chairman Senate Standing

Committee on Defense and Defense Production Mushahid Hussain Syed also criticised the government for granting permission to US Army for the construction of TCOCC. Well-placed sources on Monday told ONLINE that PCNS has included the issue of grant of permission to the US Army to build TCOCC at the top of its agenda of meeting to be held tomorrow. The sources said that Parliamentary Committee had summoned the officials of the concerned ministries and their departments to explain the situation. They have also asked to come before the committee equipped with relevant information and answers of the possible queries from the members. Moreover, the PCNS will also deliberate on the finalization of its report on National Security. ONLINE

SC for action against officials who sent Tauqir Sadiq abroad

Paintings capture colours of spring

ISLAMABAD: Supreme Court has called Director General NAB in person and sought the report regarding filing of reference against the officials responsible for sending Tauqir Sadiq, former DG OGRA, abroad. The court resumed the hearing of the case regarding implementation of court decision in OGRA embezzlement case on Monday. The DG Middle East, Ministry of Foreign Affairs Nasar Ullah presented report of the case in the court. He told the court that some developments regarding bringing back Tauqeer Sadiq to the country had been made on previous day. He said that the case should be taken up at Foreign Office level On which Justice Jawad S. Khawaja asked him that FO has not mentioned this point in its report. The step should be taken on state level and report be submitted in the court within 10 days. The investigation officer NAB Waqas told the court that co accused and the front man of Tauqir Sadiq, Salim Shahzad was acquitted in the case on surety bond. ONLINE


RAWALPINDI: The Rawalpindi Arts Council hosted yet another painting exhibition titled ‘Psychedelic Spring’ here on Monday. Senator Najma Hameed and MNA Tahira Orangzeb inaugurated the exhibition which displayed the work of artists Nabeela Rashid and Madiha Saeed. The paintings highlighted feminine experience and expression of spring. The colour scheme has been chosen very pertinently. Soft images of nature, human figures and bright colours are some of the distinctive features of the works of Nabeela Rashid and Madiha Saeed who have used watercolour, pencil work, charcoal and oil as mediums to express themselves. The exhibition attracted a large gathering besides art students of the Art Council. Speaking on the occasion, Senator Najma said that the Art Council has become a hub of art and cultural activities in the region and that she always takes pride in attending such functions. She also said that the colours used in the paintings displayed here depict the spring season quite aptly. MNA Tahira said that tolerance could be promoted in society by holding such positive activities. Addressing the select gathering, Naheed Manzoor said that the RAC equally encourages new talent and experienced artists, and the group exhibition by Nabeela and Madiha, both the students of RAC Art classes, was an effort in this direction.

I SLAMABAD: The Supreme Court bench comprising Justice Nasir ul Mulk heard at length the arguments advanced in the case regarding filing of reference against the accused in the appointment of Adnan A Khawaja, managing director of the OGDCL. NAB Prosecutor General KK Agha submitted his arguments in the court claiming that the Supreme Court could not interfere in the investigation in the case and since NAB has filed references against certain accused, the court had no further jurisdiction under Article 184(3) of the Constitution. Barrister Syed Ali Zafar who is representing Ismail Qureshi and Khalid Ikhlaq Gillani submitted that the person who had appointed Adnan A Khawaja was former prime minister and one who was allegedly benefited was Adnan A Khawaja. He submitted that both these persons, according to NAB, were innocent. On the other hand, his clients had only issued the notification for appointment of Adnan Khawaja in pursuance of the order of the then prime minister and yet NAB has deemed it fit to file a case against these innocent public officials who happened to be at that time secretary and joint secretary at the Establishment Division.

LAHORE: The mother of alleged accused of Badami Bagh incident weeps as she maintains that her son is not involved in the incident, during hearing at Anti Terrorist Court. ONLINE

NAB probes Metro Bus, Ring Road ISLAMABAD: Taking cognizance of various reports relating to major violations by the Punjab government on the mega projects of Metro Bus and Ring Road contract’s award to various parties including NLC, without processing the case as per

rules, National Accountability Bureau has decided to investigate these cases at NAB HQs. In this context all documents have been sought from Government of Punjab along-with names of functionaries responsible for the award of these contracts. ONLINE

Govt to defend PM's son-in-law’s case

14 Badami Bagh ‘rioters’ sent to jail


I SL AM ABAD: The government has engaged Barrister Syed Ali Zafar to represent it in the petition filed in the Islamabad High Court challenging the appointment of Shahnawaz Mahmood, the son-in-law of the prime minister, as deputy managing director of the Pak-China Investment Company. The case has been filed by Javed Mahmood who claims that he was appointed as deputy managing director for three-year but the Ministry of Finance removed and replaced

him with Shahnawaz Mahmood who is not qualified. The chief justice of the Islamabad High Court had suspended the notification on March 5, 2013. Barrister Zafar on behalf of the Ministry of Finance has filed a detailed reply and aggressively defended the ministry’s action claiming that Shahnawaz Mahmood was a double MA from the London School of Economics, one of the most prestigious universities of the world and has vast experience of banking and finance, and fully qualifies fitness test prescribed by the State Bank of Pakistan.

Shahbaz Sharif says arson worst example of barbarism

L AH ORE: The Anti-Terrorist Court on Monday sent 14 of the riots suspects to jail on judicial remand. Earlier, police presented 35 suspects in the court amid high security. They were brought before Judge Iran Saeed Officials said out of the 35 accused, 14 were nominated while 21 were unknown. A large number of relatives of the accused also gathered outside

the court, alleging that the suspects were arrested by police during overnight raids. On the other hand, Chief Minister Shahbaz Sharif has said that the Badami Bagh incident “is the worst example of barbarism”: Sharif said those involved in the incident shall not be forgiven. A meeting headed by Shahbaz Sharif was held at the Chief Minister’s House during which

the situation in Lahore after the incident was discussed and the restoration works were reviewed. The chief minister said that the burning of houses of the Christian community was not a service to Pakistan or Islam. He further said that the Christian community was mistreated and the burning their houses in Badami Bagh’s Joseph Colony after the arrest of the suspect was unjustified. The

episode had spoiled Pakistan’s image in the international community, he added. Moreover, the Punjab chief minister said that those involved in the incident were being apprehended and would be handed exemplary punishments. Furthermore, CM Sharif also said that those affected by the Badami Bagh incident would be compensated at all costs. ONLINE


Seasonal labourers – wheat for survival (III) Water-borne and skin diseases are part of their daily life There are many cases of women delivering babies in the fields and starting work again in an hour or so ATHAR LASHARI

BAHAWALPUR: The second major problem of the seasonal labourers is various diseases, including those caused by muddy water used for drinking and unhygienic food and the skinrelated problems. They start working before the sunrise and continue well after the sunset. To complete the task on time, they can also be seen cutting and threshing in moonlight. There is no concept of breakfast for these poor folks, as they have to remain content with lunch and dinner only. Around 1 pm, they have a break for two or three hours as the blazing sun doesn’t allow continuing work. During the short break, the tired women cook some food for their family members. Interestingly, many of married pregnant women also do the job. Every year, there are many cases when the child delivery happens during work. Last year in Ahmedpur East, a pregnant woman delivered a baby boy when she was busy in cutting wheat and interestingly she again started her work just after an hour. “There are many cases every year when the

Bus-service facilitates journey across LoC CHINARI: Around 22 passengers crossed the Line of Control by Srinagar-Muzaffarabad Bus Service on Monday. As per details, 16 travellers reached the Indian Occupied Kashmir while six came to Azad Kashmir from the other side of the border. It is pertinent to mention that the people are willing for a cross-border Loc but there is a decrease in the number of passengers because of the negligence of the Indian administration. –ONLINE

Anti-polio drive in tribal belt on 23rd PESHAWAR: An anti-polio drive will be launched on March 23 in Pakistan’s tribal areas, media reports said. However, the children in South and North Waziristan agencies would be deprived from the immunization against the crippling disease due to security concerns. Political authorities said during the three-day campaign almost 700,000 children would be administered anti-polio vaccine. They said 200,000 children in South and North Waziristan tribal region would not be administered the anti-polio drops. –ONLINE

Free dialysis treatment at major KP hospitals PESHAWAR: Free dialysis treatment will be provided to underprivileged patients in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa. According to media Reports, dialysis treatment approximately costs Rs 150, 000 and several lives are lost due to financial inability to pay for the treatment. According to statics, at least 30-35 people die annually in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa from liver diseases. –ONLINE

‘People from Afghanistan behind law‚ order problem’ DIAMER: Interior Minister Rehman Malik has said that terrorists from Afghanistan are creating law and order situation in the country. Addressing the inaugural ceremony of passport office at Diamer in Gilgit-Baltistan on Monday‚ he said the terrorists are getting funds from abroad. He said law and order situation was being created in Gilgit-Baltistan through promoting sectarianism. He dispelled the impression that religious schools were producing terrorism. The Interior Minister said that elections would be held on time and the nation wanted continuity of democracy. He assured that local people would be recruited in Gilgit-Baltistan Scouts. –ONLINE

women deliver the child in the wheat field, and you will be shocked that the delivery process is completed with available minimum resources such kitchen knife and dirty clothes,” Hajani Mai said. She further says sometimes, there is no other woman to help her so the male family members do the job as per their ‘knowledge’. There are also some examples of the mother or child’s death because non-availability of medical care during delivery. During the hot noon, it is very difficult to do the hard work in the fields. Two ago, a 55year-old women died in Chak 27 in Cholistan when she was cutting the wheat .The Rohi Cholistan is one of the most harsh area of the country where the temperature crosses the 54 degree Celsius in May and June. And in these conditions, lactating women also participate in the harvesting process. They have small kids - even a week-old with them. When the mothers are busy in cutting or threshing the wheat crop, they put their babies in a cloth tied with a branch of any tree or with the cot as a cradle. The crawling babies mostly spent the day in mud; therefore, they get skin

diseases and diarrhoea. Mostly, the children and their parents fall prey to asthma because of dust and husk. “My three family members - three-year-old daughter, wife and I are asthma victims; therefore, we have to spend money on its treatment, but there is no way to miss the harvesting season,” Ghulam Rasool said. During the threshing of wheat, the husk affects the surrounding one kilometre area. It seems like fog. That is why various diseases increase in these areas. According to Dr Anjum Naveed, during the threshing season, the ratio of asthma increases. “Because of the husk, the respiratory system is damaged which causes cough and asthma. And even the women and children become patients.” He added that there were also chances of fungus in the lungs which caused of TB. During the season, even those persons can also be affected by the husk who live within the vicinity where threshing machines are operated. It is seen that the children are malnourished when their parents are busy in harvesting for more than a month. The basic issue is the unhygienic food which they eat.

Unhygeinic and unhealthy food is a major problem of these casual workers. –FILE PHOTO Mostly, they have lunch with onion or ‘gur’ and dinner with daal or potato with curry. Because of the absence of a suitable place for

Violence against Christians condemned

Attock district still houses over 20,000 Afghans


Influx caused economic, environmental problems Tarnished social fabric RASHID ALI

AT T TOCK : After the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan in 1979, over three million Afghans took refuge in Pakistan. Attock, which borders Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, is one those districts where the Afghans started living in large numbers. Before 9/11, their numbers stood around 50,000 to 60,000 and the current is 20 to 30 thousands. It is important to note that there is no official data about the Afghans living in the district. Although, refugee camps were established in many parts of the country, especially in the then NWFP (now Khyber Pakhtunkhwa) and Balochistan for them, but the Zia government allowed them stay and do business across the country. Even after the Soviet withdrawal majority of them opted to stay in Pakistan. When the 9/11 tragedy happened, more than two million Afghans were still in Pakistan and many more started arriving. According to some estimates, over 1,000 Afghans were crossing into Pakistan in those days. And our country has paid and is still paying a huge price for the policy. Over the past 30 years, the high unemployment rate and the growing resentment on the continuing presence of Afghan refugees in Pakistan is adding to the general instability while tarnishing the social fabric. Like other regions, the huge influx of refugees in Attock has resulted in extensive environmental damage, much of which is probably irreversible. The impact of these refugees on renewable natural resources is of particular concern as it can prove to be a long-term hazard. In Attock, they lived in the neighbourhood of Mohalla Bijli Ghar and Awan Sharif, around three kilometres from the city centre. At one times, at least 40,000 of them lived there, as they got the accommodations on rent from the locals. Over

Although Afghans provide cheap labour but locals feel they are usurping the already limited economic opportunities. –STAFF PHOTO 10,000 of them are still living in Awan Sharif. Around 17 years ago, the Afghans also had an unofficial camp at Teen Meela Chowk, some five kilometres from the Attock city. Some of them, who are dependent on livestock and live a semi-nomadic life, are still found there. The Afghans are also found scattered in many other areas. It clearly visible that they cut down cut down trees for constructing shelters or for using it as firewood and charcoal. Foliage has also been destroyed due to the indiscriminate use to feed the livestock. Over the last three decades, the ground vegetation has been cleared to make way for farming, while unsustainable practices resulted in large tracts of land under cultivation becoming unfit for even the most basic forms of agriculture. Hence, the population pressure and arbitrary use of natural resources have disturbed the whole ecological balance of the area. Attock is a very sensitive area because of housing the largest artillery centre of the country, Pakistan Ordinance Factory Sanjwal, Pakistan Aeronautical Complex Kamra and many other installations. Attock is also a border district between Punjab and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa. Due to the unplanned inhabitation of

Afghan refugees, people of Attock are facing not only financial effects but also the severe threat of terrorism, as many Afghans indulge in crimes such as kidnapping, robbery, gambling, car thefts and smuggling. Smuggling of narcotics and lethal arms has been a major business of Afghan refugees in Attock. You can see kalashnikovs and other automatic weapons freely in marriages ceremonies which is a gift of Afghans. Attock is now facing a very dangerous trend of kidnapping for ransom. These incidents are now happening so freely that the people in Attock city are feeling unsecured in their own homes. Another social curse is five to ten years old children begging on the streets and snatching household items from the men and women of in the Fawara Chowk area. The locals are facing great hardships socio-economic problems, like initiating a business and hiring a residential building, because of these Afghans who have caused an artificial increase in the rent of residential buildings by paying much more than the locals can do. In this scenario, the people in Attock think that the Afghans should now be sent back to their country or at least restricted to the refugee camps.

ATTOCK: A protest rally was held in the city over the tragic Badami Bagh incident on Monday. The protesters marched from the UP Church Attock to Katchehry Chowk. Father Joseph Johnson led the rally while former district nazim Major (r) Tahir Sadiq, former member of Punjab Assembly Ijaz Hussain Bukhari and a large number of social and civic organisation members were also among the protesters. They expressed solidarity with the Christian community and chanted slogans against extremism. The marchers were holding hold banner and play cards inscribed with slogans which expressed their feelings regarding the incident. The protesters said the amount announced by the government was not sufficient to redress the grievances of the affectees.

Firewood is one of the most precious items for people in Gilgit-Baltistan. –STAFF PHOTO

GIL GIT: While summer is round the corner in the rest of Pakistan, the mountainous Gilgit–Baltistan is still reeling under the impact of cold as a fresh spell of snowfall has added to the chill, necessitating warming of homes. The sound of hammering the axe on wood can still be heard in every home at least once a day as wood being the only and most viable economic means of heating. In his home at Gilgit, the young Hammad Dar is cutting wood into pieces to fuel the fire pan (locally known as ‘bukhari’- a traditional heating system widely used in Gilgit– Baltistan during winter) in a room of his three-room house. He repeats this exercise twice a day at least; ensuring sufficient firewood remains available rest of the day. “If I don’t do this, the whole family suffers because of severe cold,” says 19-year-old Dar, who is a grade 9 student. “You need to have stock of wood to keep the

house warm although it requires physical exertion and money. But that’s how life is in this part of the world. The weather is just not predictable anymore.” In the recent past, almost the entire family of Dar has had a hacking cough and fever and he fears the illness may repeat itself if cold persist in the region, just as it did last month. “You cannot risk being without fire especially if you have aged or minors in the home,” he says, adding that they lit wood in a bukhari. With the temperatures still around zero degree Celsius in most of the hilly areas including Astore, Hunza, Gilgit and Baltistan, heating is still required to keep the homes warm even in March. It was further necessitated by a fresh spell of snowfall that continues whitening mountains. The issues of cold and the inflated prices aside, the region has been facing 20 hours long loadshedding, for which authorities blame frozen lakes and rivers. But for government officials, there are certain facilities too, no matter if weather is cold as the government allocates

MINGORA: Qaumi Watan Party (QWP) Chairman Aftab Ahmad Khan Sherpao Monday announced to approve special package for rehabilitation of destructed infrastructure in Malakand division particularly in Swat after gaining power in the coming elections. He was addressing a public meeting in the Gulkada area of Swat district to mark the 38th death anniversary of Shaheed Hayat Mohammad Khan Sherpao. “Around 2.5 million people of Malakand division were displaced and the infrastructure, including scores of schools, bridges and roads were destroyed, which are yet to be reconstructed,” Sherpao deplored. He lamented that neither the President nor the Prime Minister had paid any visit to the Malakand division to express solidarity with the militancy-hit people. The QWP leader said that his party would work to chalk out a plan to tap the water resources of Malakand division as the division have a large capacity to produce hydel power. Aftab Sherpao demanded an urgent exit of security forces from Malakand Division and said that it should transfer control to the civil administration. Other leaders of the party also addressed the gathering where several activists and supporters of Awami National Party and Pakistan Muslim LeagueNawaz announced to join Qaumi Watan Party. –ONLINE

PRE-QUALIFICATION NOTICE Punjab Highway Department invites applications upto 25-03-13 for Pre-Qualification of competent Civil Engineering Construction Firms/Contractors of repute to whom tender documents can be issued for the following project. 1.


OUR STAFF REPORTER ATTOCK: A man killed for honour within the precincts of Pindigheb Police Station on Monday. Qasim Khan, resident of Dhok Bhandar, told police that his brother Shafiq married Samina (who was already married to Muhammad Akram) with her consent. “My brother, after contracting marriage with Samina, shifted her to another location. Last day, our father died and I informed my brother (Shafiq) about his death. When we were going to the graveyard, Akram and his accomplice Aslam opened fire on my brother, killing him on the spot.” The murderer disappeared in the nearby jungle after committing the crime. Police have registered a case and started a search to hunt down the culprit.

Gilgit-Baltistan still shivers from the cold SHABIR AHMAD

Sherpao stresses Malakand rehabilitation

S. No.

Man shot dead for honour

budget for heating in offices and hospitals for a period starting from November 16 and ends on March 15 every year. “Officials from Grade-17 and above are entitled to 45 kilograms of firewood per day while officials from Grade-16 and bellow are entitled to use 23 kilograms per day,” says Rahman Shah, a senior district administration official. But the luxury isn’t meant for general public. Dar says that in December, they purchased 3,200 kg of firewood at Rs 40,000. But now they have run out of stock. “The rate has jumped from Rs 500 per 40 kg to Rs 600 per 40 Kg, making it even harder for people like us,” he remarks. Many of the families failing to afford regular heating end up in hospitals. “For children and the aged, the chill brings with it new ailments such as acute chest and respiratory infections,” said Dr Shujaat Ali of government city hospital. A sharp increase in number of patients is observed from November to February every year as a sight laxity can make the whole family sick.

residence, they also remain a target of snakes, especially during night. (To be continued)


Name of work

Extension / Relocation of Pedestrian Steel Bridge as per Design/Drawing approved by Competent Authority at G.T road (PESHAWAR SIDE) Pir Wadhai Morr Rawalpindi. Extension / Relocation of Pedestrian Steel Bridge as per Design / Drawing approved by Competent Authority at G.T road (SADDAR SIDE) Pir Wadhai Morr Rawalpindi Extension / Relocation of Pedestrian Steel Bridge as per Design / Drawing approved by Competent Authority at IJP road, Pir Wadhai Morr Rawalpindi.


12 Million

12 Million

15 Million

Note: The above mentioned work is time limit project and as such tender documents shall be issued to the Firms/ Contactors who shall fulfill the following pre-requisites and undertake to complete the work within fixed period. In addition the firm shall have to fulfill the following pre-requisites:1. The interested firms/ contactors are required to submit applications with information/ documents duly page marked & indexed (in duplicate) so as to reach in the office of undersigned upto 25-03-13 during office hours. 2. Name of firm with full address of the person / persons dully authorized by the firm with whom future correspondence is to be made and copy of partnership deed is to be attached therewith. 3. Year of establishment of firm supported by certificate from the registrar of firms. 4. Certificate of registration from Pakistan Engineering Council, Islamabad upto 31-12-2013 (duly attested by 1st class officer). 5. a) List of permanent business management, finance management and engineer/technical staff with their complete bio data/testimonials and proof of stay with the firm. b) List of staff to be deployed on these works also be provided alongwith complete bio-data and the date of attachment with the firm. 6. a) List of T&P and construction machinery which is available with the firm and will be exclusively for these projects with its make/model, Condition and Location for verification alongwith proof of ownership. b) Detail of available machinery/equipment to be deployed on these specific work will have to mentioned alongwith there present placement/location. 7. Documentary proof of financial capacity to undertake the work applied for. The extent of bank transaction undertaken in past 12 months need to be attached with certificated by the bank authorities. 8. Record and experience of similar works, photographs of completed projects with detail such as brief design, data, location and cost etc. Detail of similar works executed in the past and works in hand is supplied alongwith performance certificate from the concerned departments. 9. List and details of similar projects handled during last 03 years of same cost or above. 10. Certificate to the effect that no contract of firm was ever rescinded in the past for non-fulfillment of either the contractual obligations or the firm is blacklisted. 11. Registration certificate of Income Tax Department. 12. Any further particulars the firm wishes to furnish. 13. Affidavit to the effect that firm has no litigation with the department. 14. Entire execution of work will be supervised by the consultants through resident Supervision payments to contractor will be released only after the IPC's have been verified by the consultants. 15. Contractors / firms with higher ranking category will be performed. The pre-qualified firms will have to get themselves enlisted with the Communication and Works Department if not already born on the approved list of contractors in the relevant category. Preference will be given to firms who have completed similar projects of same cost or above in recent past as time limit project. The Department reserves the rights to accept or reject any or all the applications without assigning any reason. Preference will be given to firms who have adequate experience & have successfully completed similar time limit projects of same cost or above in recent past. Further particulars if desired may be obtained from the office of the undersigned. Only pre-qualified firms / contractors will be eligible to receive the tender documents for participation in tenders subject to their enlistment / renewal in the C&W department Punjab for the year 2012-13 and PEC for the year 2013 in relevant category. (FARHAT MUNIR) Superintending Engineer, Provincial Highway Circle Rawalpindi



Chief Editor: Huma Ali Executive Editor: Atif Mateen Resident Editor: Saeed Minhas Consulting Editors: Jalees Hazir Samina Choonara Block 11, G-6/1, Aabpara, Islamabad Telephone: 051 260 7153-4 Fax: 051 260 7498

Peace in Afghanistan Addressing a ceremony on the occasion of International Women Day in Kabul on Sunday, Afghan President Hamid Karzai said the Taliban were holding talks with the US in Europe and the Gulf but were conducting blasts in Kabul and Khost. At the same time, he said that the Taliban were not his enemy, and that the people of Afghanistan had been tortured in the name of Taliban. It is difficult to make sense of his confused outpourings. President Karzai appears to be sour for being kept of the loop; he had expected to be at the centre of peace talks and lead the negotiations. As a result of Karzai’s remarks, a joint press conference of President Hamid Karzai and US Secretary of Defence Chuck Hagel was cancelled. In September 2012 President Karzai had stated: ‘the US-led war on terror has not been fought the way it should have been and has brought only misfortune and grief to Afghanistan’. But he himself is to blame in equal measure, as he never raised the right demands with the occupiers at the right time. Due to Taliban’s predominantly Pakhtun ethnicity, the set-up propped up by the occupiers arrogantly treated the community as an outcast in the power dispensation. Afghan minorities, mainly Tajik, were inducted in the Afghan army, intelligence, police and administration, with Karzai presiding over these developments as a mere showpiece. The community of erstwhile kings and kingmakers was surely not to take kindly to the raw deal dealt to it. Karzai would surely know that it is not only the Taliban insurgency that is blighting Afghanistan but also a resurgence of Pakhtun nationalism, which has swept not just the east and south but also the north and west of the country. Denied their rightful place in their homeland, the Pukhtun majority is now up in arms against the artificial power structure that the US has tried to erect over their heads. The disrespect shown to Afghanistan’s ground realities by American policymakers since their invasion has now become an impediment for a respectable end-game for them. The US has to understand that without giving the majority Pakhtuns the due share in power, there would be no peace in the foreseeable future. If history is any guide, nobody should make long term plans to stay in Afghanistan. It is true that contradictions have existed between Pakhtuns and Tajiks, Hazaras and Uzbeks for centuries but barring a few exceptions in the past, they stayed together and put up a joint resistance whenever foreigners invaded Afghanistan. They stand divided this time. If the Northern alliance and the Taliban do not reach an agreement on sharing power after the withdrawal of US and NATO forces, there would be a bloody civil war because both sides are armed to the teeth. The end result could be disintegration of Afghanistan, with more regional players jumping in the fray to secure their positions, and the bloodiest great game in the region to date. Afghanistan’s neighbours should get involved in the peace process and ensure that the post-withdrawal set-up in Afghanistan reflects the ground realities of the country.

Tarnishing religion for greed No religious dispute was involved in all these tragic incidents but other more vile interests such as land grabbing. The land that these vulnerable communities occupy is precious property to individuals who use the ploy of blasphemy to set mobs on them AAMIR HUSSAINI

forward to stop this from happening keep silent. but the traders hurriedly closed their A majority of women present in that programme told me that due to shops to protect themselves. Women’s day comes every year in This is yet another major incident the fear of how easily anyone could the month of March and I attend in the Punjab after Gojra, Khanewal, play the blasphemy blame game various functions each year in with them, they kept their religious and the tragic fate of Shanti Nagar. which I hear big talk. But recently, ideas to themselves, even when they The Punjab government has faced I was in a remote place in such acts of lies and larceny before Khanewal - Landhi Colony which is were being represented in a distorted form. Sometimes they are but they do not seem to have learnt largely a Christian community from them or to have any plainly told they are kafir and where I and other speakers held a should change their religion or fear contingency plan in mind. Some of dialogue with very poor working the young women I was in the the wrath of God. People don’t women to understand their living process of talking to pointed out that generally try to argue or raise conditions and state of mind. all three tragedies happened in the objections because they or their The dialogue was arranged in a family members may be booked for tenures of Pakistan Muslim LeageChurch programme for women, a Nawaz in the Punjab. blasphemy which is a penalty that majority of whom work in the Is this just chance or does some only carries the death sentence ever government or are privately employed in houses as cleaners and attendants. In the Church, I saw these girls and women sitting and While we were in conversation, listening keenly to the speakers. They told me that for them the emergency news reached the church meaning of freedom is to have the about incidents of looting and arson right to work and earn a living in a peaceful work environment where in Lahore in a Christian colony of the they are not harassed in any way. poorest people. I felt a deep sense I spoke to them about the historical background of the of shame and helplessness at what international women’s day and how I heard because I belonged to the it began when women protested in the streets, demanding a decrease in community that was carrying out their working hours. Most young this violence in the name of religion and old women present in the gathering admitted that what they wanted was quite similar but they were hesitant to talk until since General Zia changed the laws. responsibility rests on the shoulders encouraged by a young social of the leaders and policies of the They told me about their daily activist and Sister Salma. When an experience of public humiliation to PML-N? Another reality hidden atmosphere of trust was created, behind such criminal attacks on these women began to speak of their which they have no defense. localities of religious minorities is While we were in conversation, need for freedom of expression and emergency news reached the church that it is triggered by some personal of movement, both of which were impeded by the fact of belonging to about incidents of looting and arson enmity between two individuals from different faiths. A drunken in Lahore in a Christian colony of a minority religious group in a argument between a Muslim and a the poorest people. I felt a deep largely intolerant and threatening Christian may then result in the sense of shame and helplessness at majoritarian social setting. person from the more vulnerable what I heard because I belonged to I tried to challenge some of their community being targeted. In such the community that was carrying old beliefs and to talk about issues cases, it is all too easy to distort the out this violence in the name of that are considered taboo but I religion. According to official reports facts and transform the incident noticed how some of them had into a fight between religious expressions of confusion and fear on of the Punjab government, about sentiments. Some dishonest clerics their faces. I tried to explain myself, 10,000 people attacked a Christian and people with sectarian feelings colony on trumped up charges of telling them that I was bringing up then avail such opportunities to blasphemy while the security forces issues so they would begin talking shine and raise people’s emotions who had been posted there due to about them. Women are generally for the wrong reason. We have seen the threat, proved to be insufficient not encouraged to voice their the demonstration of such to stop the mob. No one from the opinions and those from a religious dishonesty by some so-called clerics minority are under more pressure to surrounding neighbourhood came

in the case of Rimsha and in Gojra and Shanti Nagar. In Shanti Nagar, a police officer forced entry into the house of a Christian family in a drunken state and not only disgraced the women of the house but threw the Bible on the floor. Later, to save his own skin, he made up a fictitious story of a case of burning and disgracing the Koran in Shanti Nagar, spreading this mischievous and untrue tale among the Muslim community. A charged mob then attacked the community, torching the entire village, including shops, homes, and even the church. That incident took place in the second term of the Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz. Only much later did reality surface and the police officer and other conspirators were exposed. All such tragic stories in the Punjab expose the weakness of our security institutions. The police do not have the ability to control charged mobs attacking and burning public and private properties and they are ready to wait it out till an entire colony is razed to the ground before arrests are made. And yet, our chief minister speaks in admiration of the police force. In this most recent incident in Lahore too, it was not the police that evacuated people from their homes to a safer place. The families had fled due to fear of an attack. The fact is that no religious dispute was involved in all these tragic incidents but other more vile interests such as land grabbing were masked under it. The value of land that these vulnerable communities occupy is precious property to other individuals who use the ploy of blasphemy to set mobs on them. It is also feared that some of these mobs are created by the mafias into land grabbing and that it is not a spontaneous response of neighbours, for instance. It is a crying shame that the name of religion is being tarnished in this manner and people are made to suffer for the greed of the powerful. THE WRITER IS A FREELANCE COLUMNIST

Obama is the worst US president ever RON RIDENOUR Yes, I mean it: the worst ever! We’ve had James Monroe and his doctrine of supremacy over Latin America. We’ve had Theodore Roosevelt and his invasion of Cuba; Nixon, Reagan, Bush-Bush and their mass murder, and all the war crimes and genocide committed by most presidents. Yes, but we never had a black man sit on the white throne of imperialism committing war crimes. And there he is, murdering even more people in Afghanistan than Bush, backing coups in Latin America, continuing to undermine Iraq, sending drones, mercenaries, saboteurs to Pakistan, Somalia, Yemen, Uganda, Libya and now Syria. He bores deeper into several African countries, rich with oil and minerals, than his white predecessors, Democrats and Republicans. The US is eliminating the few secular governments that there were in the Middle East and North Africa. Obama is busier fulfilling total US American world domination than even Bush, Reagan and Nixon. He is the president for US corporations. With his black Kenyan roots he can walk into Africa’s rich parlors and black “White Houses” and communicate with these butchers better than any of the capitalist class’ earlier presidents, all of them white.

EDITOR’S MAIL BOX Courtroom drama Some years ago I had pointed out in these very pages that the court’s record and orders were being traded in at least one of the banking courts in Karachi and that no action had been taken against the culprits so far despite repeated complaints on record. One such instance is of a final order that was stolen in 2000 and could not be retrieved or issued by the concerned court, which, years later,

Obama is murdering even more people in Afghanistan than Bush, backing coups in Latin America, continuing to undermine Iraq, sending drones, mercenaries, saboteurs to Pakistan, Somalia, Yemen, Uganda, Libya and now Syria. He bores deeper into several African countries, rich with oil and minerals, than his white predecessors Obama is worse than them, precisely because he betrays all his black “brothers and sisters” in the US, all except a few rich and opportunistic ones. He was the hope; he would improve their lot, and that of the poor, the working people. But he has done nothing of the sort. Instead, he takes from them to give to the rich, the worst criminals on Wall Street, the war industry, the oil and mineral industries. Virtually all of his economic advisors hail from Wall Street and, in many cases, were central figures in the enormous economic crimes of the last few years that have stolen hundreds of billions, even trillions of dollars from the poor and the middle class. His top militarists, Homeland Security thugs, and CIA killers are some of those that Bush used - most of them Republicans. As commander in chief, he has had the national hero Bradley Manning tortured. He seeks to destroy Wikileaks and its founder Julian Assange. I gave a speech in front of the US embassy in Copenhagen when Obama was to receive the Nobel Peace Prize, for Christ Sake. Here are excerpts: ‘We live in a state of permanent war and

mysteriously could only supply a certified copy of the same bearing the current date against the real date on which certified copies of the said missing order were applied for. After a series of complaints were made to the learned judge, what he did was have, instead, a copy supplied thereof with the current dates by which time the limitation had naturally expired, barring the defendant from his right to appeal. While the said missing order was kept in abeyance, the court proceeded with the case by issuing the sale certificate to the plaintiff/auction purchaser against which serious objections were at once lodged by the defendant but to no avail as the learned judge was not inclined to listen to the defendant having self-admittedly said that he had been “pressurized” by the National Accountability Bureau (NAB) and, in turn, “instructed” by some senior judge to dispose of the case on the deadline given. Obviously, that too was to be done in favour of one of the biggest bank defaulters whose name already happens to be with the Supreme Court (SC). By favouring them in the case, the aim was to shun and offload the third party from legal interruption with the obvious intention

Obama continues this system, as he must, because no president of the USA can significantly moderate or abolish that brutal system. It is of no consequence what one’s color, gender or sexual preference is. Changing or abolishing capitalism and imperialism can only occur when gigantic numbers of productive and service workers wake up and fight for such. And we must do so with our own political parties not the dominating capitalist parties, Democratic or Republican, or in Denmark with the current array of political parties. ‘Tomorrow this black president for capitalism and its wars-for-profit will receive the so-called Nobel Peace Prize. This is an absurd hypocrisy, even more so as it occurs just days after he announced sending 30,000 more murdering US troops to Afghanistan where the resistance forces, fighting for their country’s legitimate sovereignty, will righteously receive them with weaponry. ‘The media fail to mention that this is the second time Obama has sent additional troops to Afghanistan. Within his first 100 days in office, he ordered an additional 17,000 troops

of squeezing out a very substantial ‘reward’ that NAB, as a rule, is said to charge banks on such recoveries or from plea bargains. With the passing of the limitation due to failure of the banking court to issue an appropriately dated and valid copy of the stolen order, the appellate court was not inclined to entertain the appeal, thus depriving the defendant of his fair right to justice. This being so, will the honourable SC recall the matter and see why action was not taken against that banking court for alienating the final order and not supplying it to the defendant on the date it was applied for until this day? Needless to say, the defendant cannot be held liable for the delay in issuing an order by the court as also envisaged in the Limitation Act but, unfortunately, the courts rarely shift from the conventional practice of knocking out even merited cases on forced technical grounds, thereby unconsciously condemning such defendants to being unheard. In doing so, they unintentionally defeat the service of justice to the already aggrieved party. May I request the honourable SC to check this ancient

to supplement the 38,000 then present. Soon, there will be nearly 100,000 US troops and some 40,000 more from other countries, including the Banana Republic of Denmark.’ While Bush was tied down in Afghanistan and Iraq, Obama takes up imperialism’s demand for blood in Latin America. The nine ALBA (Bolivarian Alliance of the Peoples of Latin America) countries have formed a cooperative trade, political and social network in the past five years and are making deep inroads into capitalism’s territory. Bush was powerless to combat this development which was started by Cuba and Venezuela, in 2004. But the new “black” president saw a weak link in Honduras where the oligarchy and the thoroughly USdominated military organised a coup d´etat with Obama-backed generals assisting. Then came the illegal elections a week ago, held under an armed curfew, which Obama declared to be legitimate even as the real president (Manuel Zelaya) and his patriotic supporters in the hundreds of thousands sought to have him reinstated. Since that speech, Obama also supported the

trend in the courts as the same is outrightly not what the SC aspires for? MAZHAR BUTT Feedback from the web

Malik Riaz – the real power broker All those who protect thuggish Malik Riaz after getting benefits out of him, will have to answer for their misdeeds someday. Malik’s benefactors in high places are as much culpable of the crime of robbing the poor and widows of their properties as is Malik himself. May they be bureaucrats, politicians, judges or generals. An adage of wisdom is that behind big money, there’s always crime. Those who support Malik are, needless to say, partners in crime. SURFER UPDATE4@YAHOO.COM Naheed Khan strikes back The move is timely. Nobody can accuse them of manipulation for power at this stage.

removal of progressive Catholic priest and President Fernando Lugo in Paraguay. The first “black” president ran on a peace ticket, a position which he has reversed. Nor has he significantly fulfilled any other of his somewhat progressive campaign promises, such as closing down Guantanamo’s torture factory. “I Have a Dream Drone” has become Obama’s mantra. I close with the words of Bolivia’s Evo Morales, the world’s first indigenous president, excerpted from his 10 Commandments: Commandment 1: To End with Capitalism “If we want to start a serious and sincere discussion on climate change we should know that it is about the struggle between two ways of living, between two cultures: the culture of trash and death, versus the culture of life and peace. This is the core of the discussion on climate change. In order to preserve the planet, life and the human species, we must end Capitalism!” Hasta la victoria siempre!

They know politics well. I wish them luck. The PPP is acceptable without the Zardaris.


anyone answer why all the LDI licensees, who had invested heavily, had to pack up?





Pork-eating parliamentarians

Mobs have no religion This article is extremely true.

In fact it doesn't matter for them because they are used to it whether it's haram pigs or money GHAZANFAR G_BHATI@HOTMAIL.COM

Innocent souls. Either they could not read menu tags being "properly educated" or didn't know what pork meant.


Turf war to conquer Karachi Not a very well researched article. Author seems to have no knowledge of actual happenings. The dynamics of Lyari not amply covered.


PTCL, MoIT involved in telephony cartel CCP should first look at Telecom Deregulation Policy of 2003. Can


Please email your letters to or post them to our address in Islamabad.


Happiness and mediocrity Are happiness and mediocrity opposite terms? If I’m not famous or a great rocket scientist and there is no pomp and show to my life, would I be all right? KEEKAR KANAIR

faces. Who are they talking to? Someone important. Meanwhile, I am trapped in There was a copy of The Brave New unhappiness. The effect of the cold World at my hotel in Negombo, Sri and waiting for my flight have Lanka. I picked it up and read really got me feeling so down. I Aldous Huxley’s foreword which got don’t have the strength of hypocrisy me down very low. I felt caged in. in me to put on a happy face. I must Silva, the owner of this small hotel I look terribly sad. stayed at, had a Bollywood look and I remember a good American appeal. I doubt that he’d even care if I took the book. But I put it back after friend of mine, who was a school teacher, once tell me about La Vie en reading several pages that had the Rose when he said I should see that same effect as the foreword. Huxley said that man was in search of sanity film about the life of Edith Piaf, the French chanteuse. I remember him having to choose between the dark modern industrial life and something saying that that film was a good portrayal of people like us. I think he that was old and cruelly outdated. After not having had much sleep in was including me in the trio. What was common among my school a strange place and having walked teacher friend, Edith and I... I on the beach in the rain, I had sore airways and an irritating cough come wondered. Being a singer is not a common thing. Being a drunk isn’t on me. Colds have a way of getting either. Unhappy? Eccentric? Lonely? me down too. I felt caged into I didn’t want to share those labels Huxley’s world. Some time later I am at the airport with either Edith or my friend. Did he mean it in a positive sense? People for my return trip. In this same state like us, who are not banal, mediocre which feels like a hangover, I am or ordinary? Possibly forward seeing fresh happy faces around me. thinking and extraordinary? I may be There are Muslims in white Umrah cloth with their little girls in burqas - more willing to accept that commonality. I’d rather be happy all looking happy. It’s fun to peopleeven if the label of ‘mediocre’ is not watch at the airport and at most removed. A lot of people are happy . international ones one would They look it. I doubt that all these probably see a cross-section of the Muslims are wearing masks of world. It is a great distraction, happiness at the airport. I should do especially when there’s enough time a survey some day... to kill and when one is too tired to People are mostly with their loved stick one’s nose in a book. I am ones here at the airport and that looking on and a German couple is seems to be why they’re happy. looking on as this family of happy, energetic Muslims goes past with the Together. Am I fooling myself? Could this be these women’s one and little burqa’d girls riding the luggage only outing of their lifetime when carts. It is astonishing to me to see a their men let them out of rigorous retrograde drift among Muslims in the physical aspect. I assume it is the abusive slavery the 3 am cookery for appearance of their spirituality, their Ramadan and they too feel trapped, like me, in a Brave Old World? faith. Or is it that I’m just noticing it It might be that adopting or going more? Is there a spiritual need in me seeking manifestations of the sacred, back to some degree of be it man’s humble way of developing conventionality might get me to a happy balance in this Brave New dark calluses on the forehead and wearing white cotton cloths for travel World. I’m saying this because I’d never thought about doing the to the holy land. In Pakistan, the Umrah until today. Most people bearded, callused look is usually visibly happy are the ones with their taken with a grain of salt, at least families. They can’t all be faking it. among people I know who’d known They look relaxed. Pakistan free from this ultra-strange Happy and relaxed is when I’m neo-conservatism of otherwise most at peace. Being relaxed I feel decent people. I’m in the present moment and But at any rate I cannot help undisturbed by memories of the past watching happy Indonesian, or anxieties about the future. Malaysian or Sri Lankan women Are happiness and mediocrity standing by their men in nicely put opposite terms? If I’m not famous or together ensembles of purple abayas a great rocket scientist and there is with navy blue robes of silk or some no pomp and show to my life, would such, if not black burqas. Laughing I be all right? Did Edith Paif’s being and running to catch flights with no France’s sparrow give her the inner appearance of oppression - in fact, peace she needed, just like us - me with some of the most carefree, and my school teacher friend? I don’t ringing laughs at sharing jokes with think happy people should worry the men. about any labels anyway... which The Sri Lankan Army men are brings me to re-consider this whole waiting to board the plane in the discussion’s philosophical necessity. same area as mine - fresh, shaven, I’ll get happy once I shake off this happy, well dressed. Some of them darned cold. I better. are talking to someone on their mobile phones with smile and THE AUTHOR IS A FICTION WRITER expressions of satisfaction on their

Understanding the structures of violence We should move beyond our convenient religious framing of violence involving different denominations. Instead, we should look into structures of violence which not only create the opportunity for mob violence but also help mobs perform violence IMDAD HUSSAIN

rough-and-ready association of ideas’. This book demands prudential attention as it can help us understand mobs better. It is with the insights The latest act of mob violence in the provided by earlier thinkers like Le form of burning Joseph Colony, a Bon and other social scientists that we Christian neighbourhood in Badami should examine rising incidents of Bagh, Lahore, is highly worrisome. It mob violence in Pakistan. draws attention to the urgency of The increasing number of incidents explaining the structures of violence invites us to move beyond our familiar in the country. By structures of and convenient religious framing of violence, I mean the actors, institutions and interests which create violence involving different denominations. Instead, we should the conditions of mob violence. The look into structures of violence which question is under what conditions individuals form mobs? Psychologists not only create the opportunity for mob violence but also help mobs try hard to provide answers but they perform violence. The recent torching are often left surprised by the strange in Joseph Colony is more a case of workings of the human mind. mob violence, but in the haste to Friedrich Nietzsche (1844-1900) explain events with ready-made acknowledged the complexity of the conclusions, commentators in the human mind by remarking that country have declared the torching of human motivation was too complex Joseph Colony as a performance of and irreducible to simpler Muslim religious bigotry. The point formulations. If understanding individual human beings is difficult, it has been emphasised to such an extent that the possibility of a sane is surely more difficult to explain analysis has been virtually eliminated. collective behaviour in its disorderly No doubt, religious bigotry has forms. Even the mystics who claim to increased in Pakistan, but far more deal with matters concerning the human heart, withdraw from any such gruesome is the usage of religion for private/personal purposes. It is a understanding of the collectivity. dangerous trend which must be Sultan Bahu (1628-1691) is the finest exposed. Religious bigotry and the use example in this regard. of religion for private ends are not the As a form of collective behaviour, same. The tradition of using State mob violence is at its apex in South Asia. Social scientists and local literati institutions for personal and private benefits has colonial roots, and using struggle very hard to explain it. religious institutions for private However, the more it is understood, the more it remains unexplained. The benefit is quite similar to that mode. Some people in Pakistani society have London riots in 2011 surprised many learned to use religion as an scientists. In his classic study, The instrument of profit. Should not this Crowd: A Study of the Popular Mind (New York: The Macmillan Co., 1896), shameless use of religion for benefit be exposed? French sociologist Gustave Le Bon In Joseph Colony, the mob actually said mobs ‘are not to be influenced by looted the homes before torching reasoning, and can only comprehend

them. An impartial inquiry may reveal other material interests behind the event. In this context, the tendency of liberal intellectuals to explain mob violence essentially in religious terms is ironic and misplaced. With the immense burden of shame, some liberal intellectuals are offering an apology to Christians. Do they apologise as Muslims? That remains unclear. Read, for example, this Facebook message posted by some liberals: ‘I apologise to my Christian friends and brothers and sisters who suffered so much. My head hung in shame for all that.’ I have seen parents sometimes expressing shame in this way when their children do something obnoxious. What is the relationship of these liberals with the mob that attacked Joseph Colony? I wish the circulators of this message had thought about the harmful effects of this patronising tone for the Christians of Pakistan. Our liberals should read Hannah Arendt. In her 1969 book, On Violence, she laments the scholarly tendency of using words like “violence” “power” and “authority” in a casual manner. In her judgment, the careless use of these words means “deafness to linguistic meanings,” and “a kind of blindness to the realities”. Matters involving religious differences are highly sensitive and the implications of misusing words may be highly dangerous. Our liberals should exercise restraint and not impose ready-made explanations of “religious bigotry” on whatever is bad in Pakistan. The torching of Joseph Colony is a tragedy but not entirely a matter of religious bigotry. The incident illustrates that individuals can

mobilise mobs to exact private revenge. Most of the cases of mob violence in Pakistan have had secular reasons. Remember the events of burning alleged thieves alive? Remember the lynching of two brothers in Sialkot? The stories of mobs watching women stripped in public for falling in love or for marrying someone of their choice are so common. Newspapers and TV channels report stories of how the faces of thieves and drug addicts, and alleged sex-workers, were blackened by the mobs. The rise in mob behaviour in this country demands clear and nonideological thinking. It is because the victims of torching in Joseph Colony and their sympathisers have also resorted to the same mob hysteria. While agitating, the agitators have also torched public infrastructure. It means that structures of violence can create herd mentality among both the victimisers and the victims. In the end, the instruments of the victims and victimisers are the same, violence, looting and torching. Religious framing of violence between two different denominations reify the religious imagining of human life. It blinds us to those who use religion to justify violence. The acts of violence are condemnable. Equally important is to observe an ethics of condemnation of violence. The incident must be investigated judiciously including multi perspectives by the scholars and State agencies. Scholars and activists from all denominations should work to expose the structures of mob violence. THE WRITER IS ASSISTANT PROFESSOR AT FORMAN CHRISTIAN COLLEGE, LAHORE

A government of, by, and for Lockheed Martin DAVID SWANSON What’s the world’s biggest war profiteer to do if it already owns the federal government but is having trouble kicking around the local government of Montgomery County, Maryland, where it’s headquartered? Why, hire the state of Maryland to step in, of course. Lockheed Martin lives by killing, although nobody ever gives it a background check before allowing it another weapon. Such a background check would reveal Lockheed Martin to be the number one top offender among U.S. government contractors. When Congress was defunding ACORN for imaginary crimes alleged by a fraudster who is now having tocompensate his victims, one Congresswoman proposed a bill to defund government contractors actually guilty of crimes. Passing such a bill would strip Lockheed Martin of some 80% of its income. The list of abuses by Lockheed Martin includes contract fraud, unfair business practices, kickbacks, mischarges, inflated costs, defective pricing, improper pricing, unlicensed exporting to foreign nations (Lockheed Martin sells weapons to governments of all sorts around the world), air and water pollution, fraud, bribery, federal election law violations, overbilling, radiation exposure, age discrimination, illegal transfer of information to China, falsification of testing records, embezzlement, racial discrimination, retaliation against whistleblowers, bid-rigging, and much more. Why, one might ask, does the federal government give such a company a dime, much less $40 billion per year? Why is it intent on dumping over a trillion dollars into Lockheed Martin for the most expensive and least functioning airplane in history, the F-35? Lockheed not only funds Republicans and

This is an assault on democracy, not just on the budget of Montgomery County and the balance of wealth in a nation that has created a Wall-Street-and-War-Making aristocracy. Well, what should we call a tax break for one of the most profitable corporations in the nation? Democrats alike with over $3 million per election cycle, lobbies officials for another $30 million, hires former officials, and shapes corporate news, but Lockheed Martin also creates local panics by threatening to notify every one of its employees that they might be fired if U.S. war preparations spending doesn’t continue to grow. The pseudo-debate of recent years between those who want to cut healthcare and retirement spending and those who oppose all cuts is a debate that any news outlet interested in selling advertising to Lockheed Martin can accept without hesitation. A debate over what we actually should cut and what we should instead invest in more heavily would be a different matter. Of course, we can all send emails to Congress. Lockheed Martin can too. But Lockheed Martin, unlike the rest of us, also owns the email system through which Congress receives our communications. Lockheed Martin is based in suburban Washington, D.C., in Montgomery County, Md. For years, Lockheed Martin and its friends at the Washington Post have been trying to get the local government to excuse the patrons of Lockheed Martin’s luxury hotel from paying taxes. Montgomery County is home to terrific peace activists who can, of course, get virtually nowhere with Congress, but who can make their voices heard locally. This has frustrated Lockheed Martin no end. I recommend reading this article by Jean Athey from a year ago, describing the work she and others have done. An excerpt: “Let’s put this tax exemption proposal in

perspective by taking a quick look at Lockheed Martin’s finances. In 2010 the company took home $3.9 billion in profits from the portion of its business that is paid directly by taxpayers (84 percent). Lockheed Martin’s CEO, Robert Stevens, received $21.9 million in compensation in 2011. So this company is doing quite well for itself, thanks to the taxpayers, and our largesse will continue into the future. . . . When Lockheed Martin’s own employees stay at the CLE, according to the Post, the corporation passes on the costs of the hotel tax to the appropriate federal contract. In other words, Lockheed Martin is already compensated by the federal government for any lodging costs the company incurs, and given federal procurement regulations, the company can charge indirect costs on top of the local taxes it pays. This means that Lockheed Martin gets its money back, with interest, on its employee lodging costs. Even if Lockheed Martin didn’t get that money back, it would still make no sense to exempt this extremely wealthy company from paying a tax on employee lodging costs. “The company also invites contractors and vendors to stay at the hotel. Why should these people not be required to pay a tax that they would pay if they instead chose to stay at the Marriott? In reality, Lockheed Martin rents rooms to more than its employees, contractors and vendors. It uses its world-class conference center for . . . conferences. It is extraordinary that the company would make an issue of this tax. Although the amount of money $450,000 per year - is significant to

Montgomery County, it is essentially a rounding error for Lockheed Martin. There’s more: not only are Lockheed Martin and The Washington Post furious at the county council for questioning the wisdom of a special million-dollar gift to Lockheed Martin to compensate it for having to pay the tax. They are also still irate that in 2011 the council briefly considered a non-binding resolution asking Congress to support the needs of local communities and cut military spending. Lockheed Martin suddenly had a job for a few of its 91 lobbyists: kill the resolution, which they did.” Here’s Jean Athey, speaking this Saturday about the latest developments: “Lockheed Martin lost the battle in 2011 to convince Montgomery County’s council to change the definition of ‘hotel’ so as to exempt guests at the company’s luxury hotel from being subject to a 7% hotel tax that everyone else has to pay. Now, Maryland’s state government is considering a bill to force the county to do so, and it looks very likely to pass. This is an unbelievable and outrageous example of corporate welfare, designed for one of the wealthiest companies in the nation. The bill is also an egregious example of state interference in a local issue and so further diminishes democracy.” This latest outrage has passed a state senate committee, and a companion bill is being considered by the Ways and Means Committee in the House of Delegates. Here’s the Washington Post. This bill (PDF) would force Montgomery County to exempt

Lockheed Martin’s conference hotel from the county’s hotel tax. In addition, it requires the County to reimburse Lockheed Martin $1.4 million for taxes it has paid the County to date for hotel taxes. The state legislature, in introducing this bill, did not go through the county delegation prior to presenting it, even though the bill will only affect Montgomery County. Senator Jamie Raskin, for example, only found out about the bill Saturday morning. He opposes it. He should oppose it. We all should. There is still a glimmer of representative government in some of our localities. People are able to get involved in local issues, have some influence, and see majority opinion rule the day. This is, of course, why people concerned about national and international issues take resolutions to local governments. Unlike Congress, local governments sometimes listen. But sometimes when they listen too much, state governments or the federal government will step in and overrule them. This is an assault on democracy, not just on the budget of Montgomery County and the balance of wealth in a nation that has created a Wall-Street-and-War-Making aristocracy. Well, what should we call a tax break for one of the most profitable corporations in the nation, a tax break on expenses it’s going to bill to the government anyway? I’d call it welfare for the undeserving rich, except that it’s not really about their welfare. It’s about their insatiable greed. (COUNTERPUNCH)


S Korea, US begin drills as N Korea threatens war Russia working on Navy presence in Mediterranean MOSCOW: Russia has started preparations for the permanent presence of its fleet in Mediterranean, Commander of the Russian Navy said Monday. "The Defense Minister ordered us to create a large navy operative unit for permanent deployment in the Mediterranean Sea. We have started that work," Admiral Viktor Chirkov told reporters. He said the personnel have currently been trained for service in that region. Russian Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu told an expanded session of the command of the Russian Armed Forces earlier Monday that the Russian Navy possessed all capabilities to form a workable squadron in the Mediterranean Sea. –AGENCIES

SEOUL: North Korean state media said Monday that Pyongyang had carried through with a threat to cancel the 60-year-old armistice that ended the Korean War, as it and South Korea staged dueling war games amid threatening rhetoric that has risen to the highest level since North Korea rained artillery shells on a South Korean island in 2010. Enraged over the South's joint military drills with the United States and recent UN sanctions, Pyongyang has piled threat on top of threat, including vows to launch a nuclear strike on the US Seoul has responded with tough talk of its own and has

placed its troops on high alert. The North Korean government made no formal announcement Monday on its repeated threats to scrap the armistice, but the country's main newspaper, Rodong Sinmun, reported that the armistice was nullified Monday as Pyongyang had earlier announced it would. The North followed through on another promise Monday, shutting down a Red Cross hotline that the North and South used for general communication and to discuss aid shipments and separated families' reunions. The 11-day military drills that

started Monday involve 10,000 South Korean and about 3,000 American troops. Those coincide with two months of separate US-South Korean field exercises that began March 1. Also continuing are large-scale North Korean drills that Seoul says involve the army, navy and air force. The South Korean defense ministry said there have been no military activities it considers suspicious. The North has threatened to nullify the armistice several times in times of tension with the outside world, and in 1996 the country sent hundreds of armed troops into a border village. The troops later withdrew. –AGENCIES

Pyongyang cuts hotline with Seoul SEOUL: The Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK) has reportedly severed an inter-Korean communication hotline following its threat to do so last week, the unification ministry said here Monday. The ministry said the DPRK seems to have cut the emergency link set up to deal with any contingency along the demilitarized zone of Panmunjom, which separates the two Koreas, Yonhap News Agency reported. South Korea and the United States began "Key Resolve" joint military exercises on Monday, which is scheduled to run through March 21, despite DPRK's warning of annulment of the armistice agreement that halted the Korean War (1950-53). Tensions have been running high since DPRK conducted its third nuclear test on Feb. 12, and the United Nations agreed to impose tougher sanctions on the country for its renewed provocations. –AGENCIES

Iraq attacks kill seven, wound 165

Italy conďŹ rms killing of 7 foreign hostages in Nigeria ROME: Italy's foreign ministry confirmed on Monday that seven hostages, kidnapped in Nigeria last month have been killed as claimed by Islamic extremists. "The checks carried out in coordination with the other countries involved led us to believe that the news of killing the hostages seized last month in Nigeria was grounded,"a statement from the ministry said. Rome prosecutors have opened an investigation over the case, local reports said later on the same day. All the seven workers taken from northern Bauchi state on Feb. 16, including four Lebanese citizens and one each from Britain, Greece and Italy, were killed by the extremist Islamist group known as Ansaru, which is linked to Al Qaeda and has claimed responsibility. The Italian victim, Silvano Trevisan, was a 69-year-old engineer from north-western Lombardy region and had been working abroad for a number of years. –AGENCIES

Congo to sign peace deal with rebels on 15th KINSHASA: Democratic Republic of Congo's government is due to sign a peace deal on March 15 with the M23 rebels who have been waging an insurgency in the east for the past year, according to a draft agreement seen by Reuters on Monday. The draft says rebel fighters will hand in their weapons ahead of a deployment of United Nations peacekeepers in their territory, and those not facing prosecution will be integrated into the army. Congo's government will, in turn, speed up the return of ethnic Tutsi refugees from Rwanda, it added. The deal seeks to end recurrent conflicts in Congo's mineral-rich east, where local politics, ethnic rivalries and tensions with neighboring Rwanda have simmered for nearly two decades. –AGENCIES

Cardinals arrive at Vatican before Papal conclave VATICAN CITY: Catholic cardinals at the Vatican gathered for their last pre-conclave talks Monday morning before shutting themselves into the Sistine Chapel to elect a successor to Pope Benedict. The conclave is due to begin Tuesday and will involve all 115 cardinal-electors. They are expected to vote until one man receives at least a two-thirds majority, or 77 votes. Cardinals must be under 80 to vote. Vatican officials on Monday were preparing for the announcement of the new pontiff. Curtains could be seen hanging on the balcony at the front of St. Peter's Basilica, where the newly elected pope will address crowds for the first time. –AGENCIES

SEOUL: Anti-war activists, wearing masks and holding placards showing the Korean Peninsula, protest against a joint military exercise between South Korea and the US near the US Embassy in Seoul. –WIRE SERVICE

Americans are training Syria rebels in Jordan: Spiegel BERLIN: Americans are training Syrian anti-government fighters in Jordan, the German weekly Der Spiegel said on Sunday, quoting what it said were participants and organizers. Spiegel said it was not clear whether the Americans worked for private firms or were from the army but said some wore uniforms. The training focused on use of anti-tank weaponry. Some 200 men have already received such training over the past three months and there are plans in the future to provide training for a total 1,200 members of the "Free Syrian Army" in two camps in the south and the east of the country. Britain's Guardian newspaper also reported that US trainers were assisting Syrian rebels in Jordan. British and French instructors were also participating in the US-led effort, the Guardian said on Saturday, citing Jordanian security sources. Jordanian intelligence services are involved in the program, which aims to build around a dozen units totaling some 10,000 fighters to the exclusion of radical Islamists, Spiegel reported. "The Jordanian intelligence services want to prevent Salafists (radical Islamists) crossing from their own country into Syria and then returning later to stir up trouble in Jordan itself," one of the organizers told the paper. The reports could not be independently verified. A spokesman for the US Defense Department declined immediate comment on the Spiegel report. The French foreign ministry and Britain's foreign and defense ministries also had no comment.

More than 70,000 people have been killed and 1 million refugees have fled the Syrian conflict. It started as pro-democracy protests but has turned into a sectarian war between rebels mainly from Syria's Sunni Muslim majority and state forces defending President Bashar al Assad, who follows the Alawite faith derived from Shi'ite Islam. The United States has said it would provide medical supplies and food directly to opposition fighters but has ruled out sending arms for fear they may find their way to Islamist hardliners who might then use them against Western targets. Saudi Arabia and Qatar are widely believed to be providing weapons to the rebels, and Arab League ministers decided on Wednesday to let member nations arm them. Syria jets bomb Baba Amr: Syrian warplanes bombed the shattered Baba Amr district in the central city of Homs on Monday, a day after rebels made a surprise push into their former bastion, which had been in army hands for a year. The communally mixed city of Sunni Muslims and Alawites, the minority sect that has dominated Syria since the 1960s, has been a major battleground in a two-year-old revolt against President Bashar al-Assad that has claimed about 70,000 lives. The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, which monitors the conflict, quoted an opposition activist in Baba Amr as saying the planes had attacked the outskirts of the district, which was now partially controlled by rebel units. –AGENCIES

Gunman kills 2 US troops in Wardak KABUL: A man in a police uniform opened fire on US and Afghan soldiers Monday at a base in eastern Afghanistan, killing two American troops in what may be the latest in a series of insider attacks by Afghans against allied security forces. Afghan news media reported that three Afghan soldiers also were killed in the shooting in Wardak, the volatile province in eastern Afghanistan where President Hamid Karzai last month ordered US special forces troops to cease operations. US military officials said it wasn't immediately clear if the gunman was an Afghan police officer or posing as one. Afghan officials in Wardak said there were multiple casualties but declined to discuss the incident further because investigators were still working at the scene of the attack at an Afghan army base in remote Jalrez district. Insider attacks in Afghanistan spiked last year, with members of Afghan security forces killing 61 personnel from the US-led coalition, the vast majority of them Americans. Monday marked the deadline for US special forces to leave Wardak under orders from Karzai. –AGENCIES

KIRKUK: A suicide bomber killed three people and wounded 165 in northern Iraq on Monday, while four people were killed in shootings elsewhere in the country, security and medical officials said. The bomber struck at a police station in the town of Dibis, northwest of the ethnically mixed oil city of Kirkuk, district official Abdullah al-Salehi told AFP. Many of the wounded were pupils at an adjacent Kurdish girls’ secondary school, Salehi added. Sadiq Omar Rasul, the head of the Kirkuk health department, said the bombing killed three people and wounded 165. Dibis is part of a swathe of territory that the Kurds want to join to their autonomous region in northern Iraq, over the objections of the federal government in Baghdad. Diplomats say the dispute poses the biggest threat to Iraq’s longterm stability. Elsewehere, gunmen

killed one person in the Al-Amil district of Baghdad and another north of the capital, security and medical officials said. Gunmen also killed a blacksmith near Baquba, north of Baghdad, and a soldier in the main northern city of Mosul. The violence came a day after attacks killed 11 people, including an anti-government protest organiser and a city council member. No group has claimed responsibility for the violence. Militants in Iraq carry out attacks against both security forces and civilians in a bid to erode confidence in the government. Violence has decreased from its peak in 2006 and 2007 when sectarian bloodshed raged between Sunni and Shiite Arabs. But 10 years after the US-led invasion, attacks remain common, killing 220 people last month, according to an AFP tally based on security and medical sources. –AGENCIES

Japan marks two years since tsunami TOKYO: growing Amid dissatisfaction with the slow pace of recovery, Japan marked the second anniversary Monday of the devastating earthquake and tsunami that left nearly 19,000 people dead or missing and has displaced more than 300,000. Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe said that the government intends to make "visible" reconstruction progress and accelerate resettlement of those left homeless by streamlining legal and administrative procedures many blame for the delays. "I pray that the peaceful lives of those affected can resume as soon as possible," Emperor Akihito said at a somber memorial service at Tokyo's National Theater. At observances in Tokyo and in still barren towns along the northeastern coast, those gathered bowed their heads in a moment of silence marking the moment, at 2:46 p.m. on March 11, 2011, when the magnitude 9.0 earthquake — the strongest recorded in Japan's history — struck off the coast. Japan has struggled to rebuild communities and to clean up

radiation from the Fukushima Dai-ichi nuclear plant, whose reactors melted down after its cooling systems were disabled by the tsunami. The government has yet to devise a new energy strategy — a central issue for its struggling economy with all but two of the country's nuclear reactors offline. About half of those displaced are evacuees from areas near the nuclear plant. Hundreds of them filed a lawsuit Monday demanding compensation from the government and the now-defunct plant's operator, Tokyo Electric Power Co., or TEPCO, for their suffering and losses. "Two years after the disasters, neither the government nor TEPCO has clearly acknowledged their responsibility, nor have they provided sufficient support to cover the damages," said Izutaro Managi, a lawyer representing the plaintiffs. Throughout the disaster zone, the tens of thousands of survivors living in temporary housing are impatient to get resettled, a process that could take up to a decade, officials say. –AGENCIES

Hugo Chavez kept his promise to the people of Venezuela OSCAR GUARDIOLARIVERA

The late president's BolĂ­varian revolution has been crucial to a wider Latin American philosophy

E wrote, he read, and mostly he spoke. Hugo ChĂĄvez, whose death has been announced, was devoted to the word. He spoke publicly an average of 40 hours per week. As president, he didn't hold regular cabinet meetings; he'd bring the many to a weekly meeting, broadcast live on radio and television. AlĂł, Presidente, the programme in which policies were outlined and discussed, had no time limits, no script and no teleprompter. One session included an open discussion of healthcare in the slums of Caracas, rap, a self-critical examination of Venezuelans being accustomed to the politics of oil money and expecting the president to be a magician, a friendly exchange with a delegation from Nicaragua and a less friendly one with a foreign journalist. Nicaragua is one of Venezuela's allies in Alba, the organisation constituted at


ChĂĄvez's initiative to counter neoliberalism in the region, alongside Cuba, Ecuador and Bolivia. It has now acquired a life of its own having invited a number of Caribbean countries and Mexico to join, with Vietnam as an observer. It will be a most enduring legacy, a concrete embodiment of ChĂĄvez's words and historical vision. The BolĂ­varian revolution has been crucial to the wider philosophy shared and applied by many Latin American governments. Its aim is to overcome global problems through local and regional interventions by engaging with democracy and the state in order to transform the relation between these and the people, rather than withdrawing from the state or trying to destroy it. Because of this shared view Brazilians, Uruguayans and Argentinians perceived ChĂĄvez as an ally, not an anomaly, and supported the inclusion of Venezuela in their Mercosur alliance. ChĂĄvez's Social Missions, providing healthcare and

literacy to formerly excluded people while changing their life and political outlook, have proven the extent of such a transformative view. It could be compared to the levelling spirit of a kind of new New Deal combined with a model of social change based on popular and communal organisation. The facts speak for themselves: the percentage of households in poverty fell from 55% in 1995 to 26.4% in 2009. When ChĂĄvez was sworn into office unemployment was 15%, in June 2009 it was 7.8%. Compare that to current unemployment figures in Europe. In that period ChĂĄvez won 56% of the vote in 1998, 60% in 2000, survived a coup d'ĂŠtat in 2002, got over 7m votes in 2006 and secured 54.4% of the vote last October. He was a rare thing, almost incomprehensible to those in the US and Europe who continue to see the world through the Manichean prism of the cold war: an avowed Marxist who was also an avowed democrat. To those who think the expression of the masses should

have limited or no place in the serious business of politics all the talking and goings on in ChĂĄvez's meetings were anathema, proof that he was both fake and a populist. But to the people who tuned in and participated en masse, it was politics and true democracy not only for the sophisticated, the propertied or the lettered. All this talking and direct contact meant the constant reaffirmation of a promise between ChĂĄvez and the people of Venezuela. ChĂĄvez had discovered himself not by looking within, but by looking outside into the shameful conditions of Latin Americans and their past. He discovered himself in the promise of liberation made by BolĂ­var. "On August 1805," wrote ChĂĄvez, BolĂ­var "climbed the Monte Sacro near Rome and made a solemn oath." Like BolĂ­var, ChĂĄvez swore to break the chains binding Latin Americans to the will of the mighty. Within his lifetime, the ties of dependency and indirect empire have loosened. From the river

Plate to the mouths of the Orinoco river, Latin America is no longer somebody else's backyard. That project of liberation has involved thousands of men and women pitched into one dramatic battle after another, like the coup d'ĂŠtat in 2002 or the confrontation with the US-proposed Free Trade Zone of the Americas. These were won, others were lost. The project remains incomplete. It may be eternal and thus the struggle will continue after ChĂĄvez is gone. But whatever the future may hold, the peoples of the Americas will fight to salvage the present in which they have regained a voice. In Venezuela, they put ChĂĄvez back into the presidency after the coup. This was the key event in ChĂĄvez's political life, not the military rebellion or the first electoral victory. Something changed within him at that point: his discipline became ironclad, his patience invincible and his politics clearer. For all the attention paid to the relation between ChĂĄvez and Castro, the lesser known fact is that ChĂĄvez's

political education owes more to another Marxist president who was also an avowed democrat: Chile's Salvador Allende. "Like Allende, we're pacifists and democrats," he once said. "Unlike Allende, we're armed." The lesson drawn by ChĂĄvez from the defeat of Allende in 1973 is crucial. Some, like the far right and the statelinked paramilitary of Colombia would love to see Chavismo implode, and wouldn't hesitate to sow chaos across borders. The support of the army and the masses of Venezuela will decide the fate of the BolĂ­varian revolution, and the solidarity of powerful and sympathetic neighbours like Brazil. Nobody wants instability now that Latin America is finally standing up for itself. In his final days ChĂĄvez emphasised the need to build communal power and promoted some of his former critics associated with the journal Comuna. The revolution will not be rolled back. Unlike his admired BolĂ­var, ChĂĄvez did not plough the seas. (The Guardian)


Gold 10 Gms

Dollar Interbank


Kibor 6 months

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Urea/Bag Rs. 1742

Coal Spot $93.05/Ton

Iran-Pakistan pipeline inauguration instigates KSE’s 441-point plummet 

10-Y PIB 11.42%


Furnace oil 78,446/MT

Caretaker govt and sanction talks OUR SPECIAL CORRESPONDENT

Investors remain apprehensive about US sanctions over gasline


KA RACH I : The trading week at KSE was off to a disastrous start, While President Zardari was inaugurating the gas pipeline project in Iran the stock market was in a nose dive due to the fears regarding possible sanctions. The ground breaking ceremony of US$7.5bn IP gas pipeline has created extreme uneasiness amongst the investors. Though the government has brushed aside concerns and pressures of US, investors are fearful of project’s

implications on aid to Pakistan as well as its relations with other international donors. United States has already expressed its reservation over the project, which could potentially have implication on country’s aid as well as trading environment. According to Market Analyst Hasnain Asghar Ali, across the board sell off pushed the liquid participants on back foot; adding to the pressure was a report linking ECC’ agenda items to insider trading.Heavy selling was witnessed in almost all the sectors as investor

preferred to book profit at attractive rates. After breaching the 17,500 level the benchmark index settled at 17,522 after losing 441 points at close. Volumes dropped a bit as only 257 million shares changed hands during the trading session. While the results season is coming to an end and no other bull trigger including further monetary easing in sight a bearish trend was expected. Although technical analysts have been predicting a correction for quite some time now the magnitude of fall was

no short of alarming. PTCL and ENGRO led the rot losing PKR 0.49 and 5.45 respectively. Analysts believe that market still has a lot of potential in terms of payouts and considering the discount with regional peer. Technically speaking though a negative start of such nature can initiate a bear trend which can extend itself for a while. The end of the present government sends the market into a volatile zone as uncertainty with regards to the formation of caretaker

government grips the market. Though the Budget is likely to be presented by the new political government in May or June, but important background work will continue during interim government period. From the market vintage point, selection of the caretaker set-up holds vital importance on account of relations with IMF along with elections related preparation, which is why the person holding the Finance Ministry portfolio will be the key figure for the market.

s Pakistan National Assembly draws closer for the first time to complete its 5-year tenure on March 16, 2013 political temperature is steadily rising across the country. Within two weeks a new interim caretaker government will be inducted in line with the constitution. Where major parties are gradually launching their political campaign ahead of the general elections due in May 2013, but are also jostling to have a great say in the selection of the interim caretaker government. From the market vintage point, selection of the caretaker set-up holds vital importance on account of relations with IMF along with elections related preparation. Besides, development on IP (IranPakistan) gas pipeline has also got investors’ eyes as this could strain Pakistan’s relationship with its largest donor, US. US has expressed its reservation over the project, which could potentially have implication on country’s aid as well as trading environment. The uncertainty is creating a wave of uneasiness amongst the investors and was one of the reasons behind 1% or 221 points fall in KSE100 last year.


New government within 8-days after Mar 16:

Punjab to beat food scarcity through modern farming FAISALABAD: Punjab Agricultural Minister Ahmad Ali Aulakh urged the farmers to adopt modern practices to beat food scarcity. He was chairing a session of University of Agriculture Faisalabad’s 37th Senate meeting on Monday. The minister said that Punjab cultivates thirty three million acre of agricultural land only out of 50 million acre, lack of communication between experts and farmers was hampering the process of increasing per acre, he maintained. Talking about agricultural reforms, he mentioned that the government had distributed 30,000 tractors among the farming community with the subsidy of six billion rupees, adding that the Punjab government was taking all-out efforts to increase the per acre production. In the welcome address, Prof Dr Iqrar Ahmad Khan praised the Punjab government as it has given funds of Rs 500 million to the varsity in the last five years. –AGENCIES ARIFWALA: Farmers are busy in their work on a farm, as they dig the ground to cultivate new crops amid seasonal change. —ONLINE

Global stocks slip on Italy, China worries; dollar firm NEW YORK/LONDON: U.S. and European shares slipped on Monday as weak economic data from China and worries about Italy following a credit downgrade undermined optimism generated by last week's strong U.S. employment report. The dollar held on to gains from the payrolls data, trading near a 3-1/2year high against the yen and a 3-month peak to the euro and keeping pressure on gold and oil prices. U.S. and German government debt prices held steady, as prices of Italian and other peripheral euro zone bonds fell in the wake of a cut in Italy's credit rating by Fitch Ratings late on Friday. "I think the Italian downgrade is acting as a bit of a wake-up call," Alastair Winter, chief economist at investment bank Daniel Stewart & Co. in London. –AGENCIES

‘Twitter, social media are ground for stock hoaxes’ NEW YORK: Prominent short-seller David Einhorn raised eyebrows last month when he popped up on Twitter to disavow that he had tweeted about Herbalife Ltd. "Apparently I have a twitter impersonator," said the hedge fund manager, adding that he had no plans "to tweet about stocks." What set off Einhorn, founder of Greenlight Capital, was a post by a since-suspended Twitter account called @Greenlightcap that read: "The $HLF tug of war will in the end come down to who has more money to play with. I wouldn't want to be in Bill's shoes right now #TeamIcahn." That may have misled people into thinking that Einhorn whose infrequent tweets under @davidein tend to be about poker was picking sides in the battle between two other big-name investors, Carl Icahn and Bill Ackman, who have opposing positions in Herbalife. Einhorn isn't the only shortseller who has been impersonated on Twitter, which has become an important source of information for many investors. –AGENCIES

CURRENCY US Dollar Euro British Pound UAE Dirham Saudi Riyal Kuwaiti Dinar Canadian Dollar

BUYING 99.30 127.91 146.25 26.82 26.32 346.09 95.15

SELLING 99.55 128.13 146.43 27.00 26.50 349.97 96.59

APCNGA launches hunger strike against govt’s ‘anti-CNG policies’ STAFF REPORT

ISLAM ABAD: The All Pakistan CNG Association (APCNGA) Monday announced hunger strike to be started from Tuesday against anti-CNG policies of the PPP government. Finding no other option to keep the government away from anti-CNG policies, the CNG association (APCNGA) is now going to opt hunger strike as a way to seek some air of relief from petroleum ministry for the once robust CNG industry already bearing heavy brunt of petroleum ministry’s design to wipe it out from the country in phase wise. Ahead of general elections in the country, with expected changes in power

corridors, the APCNGA viewing the gravity of situation and business interests of the industry, Ghiyas Abdullah Paracha Chairman Supreme Council APCNGA has demanded ‘reversal of all the anti-CNG moves, abandoning projects which are to benefit few and reduce gas loadshedding duration in Punjab’. In a statement issued from the All Pakistan CNG Association has announced the hunger strike will be starting from Tuesday and a hunger strike camp would also be arranged near Kulsoom Plaza, Blue Area at 12 pm while a press conference will be held at 4 pm, said an announcement. All the office bearers and members of the APCNGA will participate in the hunger strike, it added.

We are protesting anti-CNG policies of the government, unjust gas distribution, 5day gas load shedding for CNG sector in Punjab and continuous discrimination by authorities, said Ghiyas Abdullah Paracha. He said, “Government has endangered millions of jobs, deprived masses of facility of economical transportation and destroying investment of around Rs 400 billio. All the policies are being framed to destroy CNG sector since year. CNG operators are being harassed while Punjab has been subjected to five-day gas loadshedding which amounts to punishing 80 million masses. Some important officials, hand in glove with influential energy mafia, have laid siege to the CNG sector and made life of masses miserable in a bid to plunder the country.”

February car sales flat at 12,628 units STAFF REPORT

KARACHI: Pakistan locally made car sales (including LCVs, Vans and Jeeps) have reached 82,979 units in 8MFY13 as compared to 111,889 units in the same period last year. Decline in sales is attributed to huge influx of used imported CBU’s prior to restriction on imports, termination of Non EURO-II compliant cars (‘Alto’ and ‘Coure’) and absence of taxi scheme. However, locally manufactured car sales stabilized to 12,628 units in Feb’13 compared to 12,811 units in Jan’13. We attribute strong sales to the declining inventory of imported used CBU’s and

elections buying. Further, compared to 2% MoM decline in passenger cars to 11,344 units, LCVs sales increased by 4% MoM to 1,284 units in Feb’13. Amongst individual companies, Pak Suzuki (PSMC) sales declined by 31% to 48,328 units in 8MFY13 versus 70,162 units in the same period last year. However, on monthly basis, PSMC sales remained stable at 7,000 units as compared to 7,004 units in Jan’13 primarily because of 11% MoM improvement in cargo vehicles to 2,509 units in Feb’13. However, passenger car sales declined by 5% MoM to 4,491 units in Feb’13 after booming sales in Jan’13 due to ‘New year’ buying. Similarly, Indus Motor (INDU) sales

came down by 36% to 21,847 units in 8MFY13 as against 34,366 units in the same period last year. Decline in sales is primarily attributed to 34% decline in ‘Corolla’ sales to 19,062 units in 8MFY13 and termination of ‘Coure’. However, on monthly basis, INDU sales were recorded at 3,588 units in Feb’13, stable as compared to 3,560 units last month due to elections effect. With restriction on used imported CBUs going into effect coupled with expectation of strong buying in wake of elections, we foresee decent growth in local car sales in coming months. As sales nos. are in line with the projections, we maintain ‘Hold’ stance in PSMC and INDU.

With dissolutions of assemblies on March 16, all eyes are set on the appointment of care-taker set-up which would stir the country to its 9th-general elections likely in May 2016. Constitution dictate that President (Governor) in consultation with Prime Minister (Chief Minister) and Leader of the opposition will appoint the caretaker PM (CM) within 3-days of dissolutions of assembly. In case of disagreement, both will forward 2 names to committee formulated by the speaker of the national (provincial) assembly. Even if this committee fails to finalize the name in 3-days, the names goes to ECP (Election Commission) that finalize the name in 2-days. Major tasks for the Caretaker: With constitution clear about the process, the task of care-taker set-up is what interests the market participants. We believe in addition to organize free and fair elections the major task will include preparations of Budget FY14 and relationship with the IMF given expected weakness on the external front. Though the Budget is likely to be presented by the new political government in May or June, but important background work will continue during interim government period. That is why the person holding the Finance Ministry portfolio will be the key figure for the market. IP gas-pipeline: Risk of sanctions: In other major development, ground breaking ceremony of US$7.5bn IP gas pipeline, today is creating uneasiness amongst the investors. Though the government has brushed aside concerns and pressures of US, investors are fearful of project’s implications on aid to Pakistan as well as its relations with other international donors. To recall, sanctions imposed on Pakistan have span over 3-phases i.e. 1979-1990, 1990-1998 and 1998-2001. In the last phase, imposed due to 1998 nuclear test, amongst other steps economic development assistance was terminated; foreign military sales were suspended; credits by the US suspended; US banks withheld all loan trenches; loans from donors agencies, such as the IMF and World Bank, were suspended. However, several important components of the sanctions were waived during 1998. Though, we flag that threat of sanction is still in its infancy stages but it has created some nervousness amongst the investors.

SC stays LNG import till case’s final disposal STAFF REPORT

ISLAMABAD: A three-member Supreme Court bench on Monday issued a stay order against a contract of the import of Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG), having $46-billion worth, and held that all the parties were bound to submit their written statements in the case till March 18. The bench comprising Chief Justice Iftikhar Muhammad Chaudhry, Justice Gulzar Ahmed and Justice Sh. Azmat Saeed was hearing a suo motu notice regarding irregularities in the agreement signed for import of LNG. The court also ordered the National Accountability Bureau (NAB) chief to expedite the probe into the issue and carry out the investigation in an indiscriminate manner. The court noted that it would not remark on the transparency of the current contract, adding that transparency could have been maintained if ministries for Finance, Petroleum and Economic Affairs Division had kept in view the rules and regulations in their true spirit. The court noted the Economic Coordination Committee (ECC) was also not in the favour of the contract, but even then haste was shown. Counsel for Petroleum Ministry, Salman Akram Raja, told the court that LNG was not given on lease. However the court ordered the parties to submit their stance in written and adjourned the hearing till March 18.

Improving agricultural education BY SAMAN ZAHRA

he mounting domain of Pakistan is cited as a country based on agricultural economy with a massive diversity of appropriate climatic conditions, a well fertile land and a world renowned system of irrigation. During the year 2005-2010, agriculture had an average share of 24% in country’s GDP (gross domestic production). In sector of employment it contributes about 45% industry-wise employment. According to an estimate, 63% of the residents living in rural areas directly or indirectly earn from agriculture. (Economic Survey of Pakistan, 2010-2011) Despite of this factual importance of agriculture in country’s sphere, its significance is facing a refutation. The


enrolment trends, research and development in agricultural sector is showing a decline. A research elaborates that only 1.2% of the students go for higher agricultural studies among the total number of students seeking higher education in Pakistan. The reasons behind this extremely low rate in Pakistan are: person’s on input and choice agency; the low prestige value and social image of the profession; parental persuasion; less opportunity structure and incentives; lack of professional staff; gender label with profession; limited exposure; deficient curriculum; inefficient technicalities; peer influence; dearth counseling; deprived Governmental assistance; challenging scientific and humanities discipline and resource limitation.

Owing to the given disparities in higher educational sector of agriculture, one can draw the current picture of agricultural education in Pakistan; which is required to be improved certainly. Reforms should be amended in both public and private sector to improve the condition of agricultural education. A) There must be a proper systematic organization by HEC (higher education commission) regarding agri-based education. B) Students at secondary, intermediate, pre and post graduate levels must be counseled in such a way that they come across the importance of agriculture.C) The over generalized views about the agricultural education and profession must be bringing to an end. D) The over emphasis by the parents

and teachers to not opt such subjects has to be discouraged. E) The status symbol becoming hindrance in the path of higher agricultural studies must be reformed. F) Proper resources allocation in the universities imparting agricultural studies is required. G) The involvement of agriculturists in policy making is also admirable After doing such reforms , the man power in agricultural sector would be skilled and well efficient that will lead to betterment in agriculture which in turn will draw the graph of country’s development in an ascending trend and contribute well in country’s economy. —THE WRITER IS STUDYING AT ISCS, PUNJAB UNIVERSITY


Kangana Ranaut turns nautch girl for Rajjo

Lady Gaga to marry boyfriend Taylor Kinney

MUMBAI: Actress Kangana Ranaut is all set to play a nautch girl (mujrawali) in her next movie Rajjo being directed by Vishwas Patil and the filmmaker is leaving no stone unturned to make Rajjo a feast to the eyes. According to reports, the author-turned-filmmaker was influenced by the opulence of Meena Kumari's 1972 Paakezah and has lavishly recreated an extensive red light in Borivali, Mumbai. If reports are to be believed, film's producers Four Pillar Films have spent a whopping Rs 5 crore to build the sets, as it was difficult to shoot the scenes in a real red light area. "We want to give a very realistic look to our film for which we are doing all our research. The writer of the film Atul Tiwari actually visited the bylanes of Hira Mandi in Lahore, Pakistan to aide us in building the sets of the places where mujra used to be performed in the yesteryears and we also roped in Munish Sappal for creating the sets," said Vishwas. Director Vishwas has also roped in acclaimed cinematographer Vinod , who for the first time after Devdas. -SHOWBIZ DESK

LONDON: Lady Gaga is all set to get hitched this summer to her longtime boyfriend Zero Dark Thirty movie hunk Taylor Kinney, one of her closest friends has revealed. DJ Lady Starlight, who has performed on stage and in the studio with Gaga, has revealed that the Bad Romance singer had told her that Kinney is the one for her, the Daily Star reported. She also said that Gaga is so desperate to be near the actor that she is recovering from a recent hip surgery in Chicago where Kinney is busy shooting his US TV series Chicago Fire. She further added that an announcement could be expected soon, as there’s a summer period when Kinney’s shooting schedule will be clear and her concert and studio commitments will be minimal. The couple has been dating since September 2011. -SHOWBIZ DESK

2013 n w a L n la E s e c u d o tr in Khadijah Shah , Lahore

Launch tomorrow at PF


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Katrina's bold stand against SRK


Ajay, Bipasha campaign to save the tigers SHOWBIZ DESK Mumbai: Ajay Devgn and Bipasha Basu, who have earlier done films like Aakrosh, All The Best, Apaharan, Zameen to name a few, will be seen together once again. But this time it will be for the campaign promo of Animal Planet's series to save the tigers titled 'Where Tigers Rule'. Ajay and Bipasha have shot separately with ad filmmaker Rohit Vaid for the same. News is that, a lot

of high-tech computer graphics have been used to 'show' that the duo have shot with a real tiger. On her part, Bipasha has urged that we need to save the tiger at any cost. Meanwhile, Ajay said that he is delighted that 'Animal Planet' has dedicated a month-long of programming on the tigers. The campaign also features Olympic gold medalist Abhinav Bindra and is expected to start from April 1.

do in the market will have opponents that is why the competition is so high,” said Katrina. In the latest Slice ad, Katrina will showcase her playful nature while roaming with her boyfriend as a remix of the song “Haal Kaisa Hai Janab Ka?”plays in the background. While Shahrukh Khan for the Frootihas shot the ad with kids. How can viewers be sure as to how Frooti and Slice taste without trying them out? Surely, the great Khan or the lovely Kat are not going to tell them how the drinks taste. Hopefully, let us wait to see the result of how the juicy drinks will establish the supremacy of the two competing superstars in both the ads or make their drinks a hit.


Will Smith and Jaden to star together in ‘After Earth’

Evil Dead director plans sequel


LOS ANGELES: The Evil Dead hasn't hit thetheatres yet but its director is already planning a sequel to the action-franchise. Director Fede Alvarez has said a sequel is already in the works, reported Entertainment Weekly. At the a recent premiere of the film, Alvarez said, "Weve already started writing Evil Dead 2." The film was screened on the opening night of the South by Southwest festival. Sony is marketing the film as The most terrifying movie you will ever experience. Evil Dead is a sequel to the film released in 1981 by the same name. Two of its other sequels are Evil Dead 2 and Army of Darkness. The film will release on April 5 in theatres. -SHOWBIZ DESK

LONDON: After the huge success of The Pursuit of Happyness, Will and M. Night Shayamlam are back with their action thriller post- apocalyptic film After Earth where Will Smith and his son Jaden Smith will work their magical on- screen chemistry together once more. A crash leading leaves teenager Jaden Smith , a futuristic “Ranger”, along with his legendary father, Will Smith, a strict disciplinarian, stranded on Earth, 1000 years after cataclysmic events forced humanity’s escape. With Cypher critically injured, Kitai must embark on a perilous journey to signal for help, facing uncharted terrain, evolved animal species that now rule the planet, and an unstoppable alien creature that escaped during the crash. Father and son must learn to work together and trust one another if they want any chance of returning home. The trailer has already been released and the movie is expected to release in June this year. We just can’t wait to see what the fathers-son duo looks like this time.

MUMBAI: Superstar Shahrukh Khan and gorgeous Katrina Kaif are pitched against each other in mango drink advertisement battle as brand ambassadors of Frooti and Slice, respectively and this coincidence seems to raise a sense of awesome competition between the two greats. However, barbie doll Kat seems pretty confident appearing against King Khan in her show. Katrina, who has been endorsing the mango drink Slicesince 2008, considers both brands and their marketing differently when she goes on to say: “I think they are very different brands, and I see them as different messages in terms of their marketing. Everything you

Gangnam kid releases single KOREA: The 7-yearold boy from South Korea, who showed off his dance moves alongside PSY in "Gangnam Style", is hoping to go viral too. Nicknamed "Little PSY", he's releasing an electro pop song next week. The star, whose real name is Hwang Min-woo, says he wants to gain global fame like his "big brother," PSY. Hwang is the latest recruit in South Korean pop music, KPop, even though he's only in primary school. Big PSY is continuing his worldwide tour. The original video released on YouTube last July has had a record 1.39 billion views. -SHOWBIZ DESK

Bollywood recalls — heroines returning with meaty roles SHOWBIZ DESK ou don't have a career if you are a married woman or a mother, they used to say in Bollywood. Even today, people argue that it is far easier for a hero to continue working as main lead even in his 50s than a heroine in her 40s. Several yesteryear actresses have, however, proved all that wrong in the past few years and there's more to come. We take a look at the strong, beautiful heroines who take a long break from their Bollywood career, get married, build a family and plan a comeback with huge, ambitious projects. The original sex symbol of Bollywood is ready to set the silver screen on fire once again. Zeenat Aman, the woman who brought oomph and glamour to Indian cinema, has been doing small, crucial roles for past few years. A mother of two kids, Zeenat is all set to come back to the silver screen with Ashish Bhavsar's next on beauty pageants and the controversies surrounding these contests. Zeenat's next is a 3D film.She has been married, divorced and plans to marry again soon. Zeenat Aman has


raised up two handsome sons Azaan and Zahaan, but none of this stops her from dfin what she wants. A toast to her spirit! sridevi, famous especially for her lead roles in “Lamhe” and “Mr. India” addressed those in attendance in the presence of Minister of Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises K.H. Muniyappa. Since Sridevi made a successful comeback last year with her award-winning performance in Gauri Shinde’s directorial debut, “English Vinglish”, the organization is hoping to benefit by hiring her as their brand’s new face. The coveted actress is popular across age boundaries, and has even won international acclaim now with her endearing English stutter as Shashi. An icon for the contemporary Indian woman, Sridevi is a perfect blend of style, grace, intelligence and talent, and is known for juggling home and career well. This is one good news for Sridevi fans. The actor has confirmed that she will star in the sequel to the 1987 superhit Mr India. The original film starred the actor opposite her brother-in-law Anil

Kapoor. While it was reported that Anil would do the film, it wasn’t known if Sridevi would. Now, putting all speculation to rest, the actor says, “I will be part of Mr India 2, but it is too early to talk about it as it is in the scripting stage. We are working on the sequel to No Entry. Mr India will happen after that.” The 49-year-old,

who was in the Capital on Friday, also said, “Post English Vinglish, I’ve been reading scripts but haven’t decided anything yet. I only say yes to the script that makes me say wow.” Madhuri Dixit after getting married in 1999 at the peak of her career, Madhuri Dixit was not seen in any major roles for a long times. She did

have films like Gaja Gamini and Aja Nachle with her as the protagonist but these films did not do much. The diva now plans a grand comeback with sequel to Vishal Bhardwaj's Ishqiya Dedh Ishqiya. The much anticipated sequel to Vishal Bhardwaj’s 2010 hit Ishqiya is focuses on Madhuri Dixit’s character. She essays the role of a royal

begum who expresses her love towards her man by mouthing shayari. While Naseeruddin Shah plays her lover in the film, Arshad Warsi will star opposite Kangna Ranaut. Ace Kathak dancer Birju Maharaj would be choreographing Madhuri for one of the songs. It is expected to release in the middle of this year. Madhuri, Padma award winner, has one more big project lined up for release this year - Gulab Gang. The story of Gulab Gang, directed by Soumik Sen and produced by Anubhav Sinha, is based on ex Bigg Boss contestant Sampat Pal Devi who is also the founder of the Gulabi Gang. Madhuri broke many a heart in 1999 when she got married an NRI, Dr Sriram Nene. She moved to the US to live with her husband and came back to India in 2011. She now lives with her husband and two sons in India. Madhuri's comeback to India raised hopes of her Bollywood comeback and she kept those hopes alive, making appearances on TV and social events. Madhuri's fans are now in for delicious treat as they await her Dedh Ishqiya this year.


New Zealand unchanged for 2nd England Test WELLINGTON: New Zealand named an unchanged squad Monday for the second Test against England, with coach Mike Hesson saying he wanted to reward a fine performance in the drawn first Test in Dunedin. Seamer Doug Bracewell failed to reclaim his spot in the 13-man squad after missing the first Test when he cut his foot while cleaning up after a house party. Hesson said he hoped to maintain momentum for the Test beginning in Wellington on Thursday after New Zealand dominated the early stages of the rain-affected opening fixture but ran out of time as they pushed for victory. "I was very pleased with both the bowling and batting efforts in Dunedin and we plan to build on that in Wellington," he said. He said Bracewell would undergo a medical assessment to determine if he will be fit for the third Test in Auckland. However, the 22year-old may find it difficult to dislodge Neil Wagner, who took his place in the side and claimed seven wickets against the world's second-ranked Test team. Spinner Bruce Martin and opening batsman Hamish Rutherford both made their Test debuts in Dunedin, with Rutherford hitting 171 in his first innings, the seventh highest debut in Test history, and Martin taking five wickets. New Zealand squad: Brendon McCullum (captain), Trent Boult, Dean Brownlie, Ian Butler, Peter Fulton, Tom Latham, Bruce Martin, Hamish Rutherford, Tim Southee, Ross Taylor, Neil Wagner, BJ Watling, Kane Williamson. –AGENCIES

Zimbabwe hope to make up for lost time in Test arena BRIDGETOWN: Zimbabwe's stuttering return to Test cricket continues in Barbados on Tuesday (today) when they start their first series in more than seven years against West Indies. Zimbabwe ended a six-year hiatus from Test cricket two years ago but have played just four single tests over the last 19 months, leaving them with sparse experience ahead of the Caribbean trip. The two-test series against the Windies is their first since India toured Zimbabwe in September 2005 after which a player dispute over political interference led to a rapid decline in their fortunes. The opening encounter in Bridgetown is followed by a second Test in Dominica, starting on March 20. It is the last for Zimbabwe under coach Alan Butcher, who departs his post after the trip, leaving the team's future direction unclear. Captain Brendan Taylor was critical last month of a decision to leave home several key support staff from the tour party, including batting coach Grant Flower and bowling coach Heath Streak. Marlon Samuels returns for the West Indies after a two-month injury break and fast bowler Shannon Gabriel, who debuted at Lords last year, has been recalled. Shane Shillingford has replaced Offspinner Sunil Narine in their 13-man squad. The West Indies registered a whitewash in three ODIs and two Twenty20 matches against Zimbabwe over the last three weeks. –AGENCIES

Rahim becomes first Bangladesh player to hit double century GALLE: Mushfiqur Rahim on Monday became the first Bangladeshi to crack a double-century while Nasir Hossain hit a maiden ton as the tourists gained a 68-run lead in the first Test against Sri Lanka. Skipper Rahim hit a solid 200 and Hossain an impressive 100 as Bangladesh were bowled out for 638, their highest total in 76 Tests, in reply to Sri Lanka's first-innings total of 570-4 declared. The hosts reached 116-1 in their second innings at stumps on the penultimate day of the Test heading for a draw in Galle. Opener Tillakaratne Dilshan was unbeaten on 63 and Kumar Sangakkara 49 not out. Rahim's memorable moment came in the second over after lunch when he pushed paceman Nuwan Kulasekara for a single to the covers on a day when Mohammad Ashraful (190) missed out on his own Test double-hundred. Wicketkeeperbatsman Rahim, 24, was trapped leg-before by Kulasekara in the same over, but not before helping Bangladesh surpass their previous highest Test total of 556 against the West Indies in Dhaka last year. Bangladesh, who dominated the match for a second successive day with their solid batting, also became only the third team after India and Pakistan to score 600 or more in a Test innings in Sri Lanka. Rahim,


Bangladesh’s Shahadat Hossain is bowled during the fourth day of the opening Test match between Sri Lanka and Bangladesh at the Galle International Stadium on Monday. –AGENCIES next with Hossain. Bangladesh's previous highest stand for any wicket in Tests was 200 between Tamim Iqbal and Junaid Siddique against

152 overnight, hit one six and 22 fours in his brilliant 321-ball knock. He put on a record 267 for the fifth wicket with Ashraful and 106 for the

India in Dhaka in 2010. Sangakkara caught at Hossain mid-wicket off part-time spinner Dilshan after hitting nine fours. –AGENCIES

SRI LANKA FIRST INNINGS 570-4 dec (L Thirimanne 155, K Sangakkara 142, D Chandimal 116, Sohag Gazi 3-164) BANGLADESH FIRST INNINGS (overnight 438-4) Jahurul Islam c Chandimal b Eranga 20 Anamul Haque b Mendis 13 Md Ashraful c Mathews b Herath 190 Mominul Haque c Mathews b Kulasekara 55 M Mahmudullah st Chandimal b Herath 0 Mushfiqur Rahim lbw b Kulasekara 200 Nasir Hossain c Sangakkara b Dilshan 100 Sohag Gazi c Vithanage b Mendis 21 Abul Hasan not out 16 Elias Sunny c Chandimal b Dilshan 0 Shahadat Hossain b Eranga 13 EXTRAS: (B 2, LB 1, NB 7) 10 TOTAL: (for all out; 196 overs) 638 FALL OF WICKETS: 1-23, 2-65, 3-170, 4-177, 5444, 6-550, 7-581, 8-618, 9-618, 10-638. BOWLING 27-3-94-2 Kulasekara Eranga 34-4-122-2 Herath 62-11-161-2 Mendis 36-3-152-2 Mathews 9-2-18-0 Dilshan 26-5-75-2 Thirimanne 2-0-13-0. SRI LANKA SECOND INNINGS 3 D Karunaratne c Hasan b Hossain T Dilshan not out 63 K Sangakkara not out 49 EXTRAS: (NB 1) 1 TOTAL: (for one wicket; 30 overs) 116 FALL OF WICKET: 1-17 BOWLING 5-1-18-1 Hossain Hasan 5-0-15-0 Gazi 9-1-37-0 Sunny 5-0-14-0 Mominul 3-0-13-0 Ashraful 1-0-10-0 Mahmudullah 2-0-9-0 Toss: Sri Lanka Umpires: Richard Illingworth (ENG) and Nigel Llong (ENG) Third umpire: Tyron Wijewardene (SRI) Match referee: David Boon (AUS)

Four Australians axed from third Test for disciplinary reasons

Cadillac Open Golf Championship

MOHALI: Australia's preparations for the third Test at Mohali starting Thursday have been thrown into disarray with news that four leading players have been omitted from the team owing to disciplinary reasons. Shane Watson, James Pattinson, Mitchell Johnson and Usman Khawaja have been dropped from the squad for the Mohali Test after failing to meet a deadline of Saturday night to provide feedback to coach Mickey Arthur on how Australia can improve after being hammered in the first two Tests. According to reports from the touring Australian media contingent, Arthur had on Tuesday requested the players to present three ways in which they and the entire team could improve. Barring the four aforementioned players, all of Australia's squad replied via email or SMS or on letters submitted to Arthur under his hotel door. This left a frustrated Arthur, who set with skipper

MIAMI: Steve Stricker could be forgiven for regretting he helped Tiger Woods with his putting before the WGC-Cadillac Championship, but after losing to him by two shots on Sunday, Stricker said he simply did what golfing buddies do. Woods had been unhappy with his putting at the Honda Classic last week, complaining of his inability to find the touch he had displayed in his January victory at Torrey Pines. But a 45-minute session with leading putter Stricker put that right. Over 72 holes at Doral, Woods needed just 100 putts and Stricker could not chase him down in Sunday's fourth round despite posting an impressive four-underpar 68. Asked how many strokes he thought he may have saved Woods over the week, Stricker replied: "I have no idea. Who knows? He might have putted just as well without my help. "But he is happy, he feels really good about what he is doing on the greens and that's a good thing, even though he clipped me by a couple of shots," he said. Woods, however, was not so sure that he would have been able to correct his putting technique without the help of his friend. "I would like to say that I probably would have but...there is a but there," he said. "I'd been putting at home and it just

Mitchell Johnson

James Pattinson

Michael Clarke and team manager Gavin Dovey, to term it a "line-inthe-sand moment". "After Hyderabad the whole team was really hurting, we were discussing ways of getting back into the series," said Arthur "Unfortunately four players didn't comply with that. We pride ourselves on attitude. We have given the players a huge amount of latitude to get culture and attitude right. We believe that those behaviours with what we want to do with this team, how we want to take this team to be the

Shane Watson

best in the world, teams that are the best in the world have best attitudes and best behaviour patterns and a good, hard, ruthless culture. I believe those four players unfortunately did not meet my requirements so those four are not available for selection for this Test match. Watson and Pattinson featured in the Chennai and Hyderabad Tests, while Khawaja looked set to replace the struggling Phillip Hughes in Australia's batting order for the third Test. Watson has struggled so far, scratching

Usman Khawaja

together just 77 runs in four innings. Pattinson was Australia's best bowler in Chennai with a five-wicket haul, but managed just two wickets in the second Test. This news comes as a major blow for the tourists, who trail India 2-0 and need to win the third and fourth Tests to retain the Border-Gavaskar Trophy. Australia are already in personnel trouble with Brad Haddin called up as back-up for wicketkeeper Matthew Wade, who injured himself playing basketball over the weekend. –AGENCIES

Chen Long and Tine Baun claim All England Badminton Open titles

Denmark's Tine Baun holds China's Chen Long poses with his trophy after winning. her trophy after winning. BIRM IN GH AM: World number one Lee Chong Wei, who deferred retirement after the Olympics to make a few last attempts on the major titles, found himself denied in Sunday's final of the All England Open. Lee also found himself with an impressive new rival, Chen Long, a 24-year-old from Shashi, who fought off brave fight-backs by the favourite in each game

to triumph 21-17, 21-18. Last year Lee lost the title to Lin Dan. Now the Chinese legend may have a good successor, on the evidence of Chen's marvellous containment and rallying ability, and increasing patience and judgement on when to make pouncing attacks. Chen also carried himself like a champion. He never panicked when the match got tight, and handled the pressure like a player who may go on to win many more big titles. "This is very important – a top, world class tournament, and winning it has given me a lot of experience," he said. "I am very excited about that." It suggests that Lin may not need to come out of semi-retirement and make an attempt to defend the world title in Guangzhou in August for China to win it again. Earlier, Tine Baun became the oldest AllEngland women's singles winner of the open era when she beat the youngest singles finalist, Ratchanok Intanon, in an uniquely emotional final. The 33-year-old's 21-14, 16-21, 21-10 win over the 18-year-old brought to an end the career of one of the outstanding players of the past ten years, and the only one to threaten Chinese dominance. The Dane decided to compete this year as a "last adventure" but instead, as seventh seed, surprised herself by winning the All-England title back and taking it a third time. –AGENCIES

MIAMI: Tiger Woods poses with the Gene Sarazen Cup after his two-stroke victory in the Cadillac Open Golf Championship on Sunday. –AGENCIES

Stricker’s generosity helps Tiger to victory hadn't felt right. I still was a little bit off. But to have Stricks help me out like that... "He's been a great friend. We tend to help each other out with our putting. I know what he looks like when he putts his best and vice versa," he said. Woods had been sharp with his putter at Torrey Pines and said Stricker had been able to get him back in the same stance he had exploited so well in that Farmers Insurance Open win. "Once he put me in there where I felt comfortable, I said, well, this is not too foreign, this is what I was a month or so ago and I started rolling it and it felt really good. "I just basically carried it through the week." The session at Doral came about by accident when Woods bumped into Stricker after his practice round. The 46-year-old Stricker said that it was not the first time he had helped out Woods or other players and suggested that guidance for younger players was part of being a tour veteran. "It's kind of the nature of our game. Older players have done it with me and now I'm one of those older players, I guess, and when somebody asks me for help, I tend to give it to them," he said. After Woods's display this week, there might be a few more players calling on his expertise. –AGENCIES

Capriati faces charges for attacking ex-boyfriend MIAMI: Former tennis World No. 1 Jennifer Capriati is facing battery charges and possible arrest after being accused of stalking and punching an exboyfriend on Valentine's Day. Capriati, a three-time Grand Slam champion who won 14 titles and earned gold at the 1992 Olympics, had an altercation with Ivan Brannan at the Oxygen Health & Wellness gym in North Palm Beach, Florida on February

14, the local police department said. While Brannan was working out, Capriati, 36, "started screaming" at him before punching him "with a closed fist four times in the chest," a police report said. A yoga instructor then stopped the former tennis pro from continuing to punch Brannan and the 28-year-old managed to lock himself in the men's locker room and call 911. Brannan, a

former Florida State University golfer, had red marks on his chest from the incident, according to the police report. While filling out an affidavit, "his hands were physically shaking," it added. "It was very apparent that he was in fear of physical harm." Brannan, who dated Capriati from May 2011 to February 2012, told police that Capriati began harassing and stalking him shortly after the couple broke up. –AGENCIES

Fawad Ahmed’s journey from graveyard to Baggy Green SWABI: Fawad Ahmed's cricketing journey began in a graveyard in his village in northwest Pakistan but could yet culminate in an Ashes Test for Australia at the home of cricket, Lord's. Friends and former teammates of the 31-year-old, who fled to Australia in 2010 claiming he was targeted by extremists and now wants to play for his adopted land against England, said his talent was obvious at an early age but he never got the chance to shine in Pakistan. Syed Qamar, 35, who captained him in the northwestern town of

Swabi, told AFP that even as a young man he was a match-winner, baffling batsmen with the leg-spinner's full repertoire of deliveries. "He was a highly talented bowler, his main advantage was his height and he could deliver leg-break, flipper, googly with ease," he said. Ahmed played a handful of firstclass matches in Pakistan, taking a wicket in his debut match for Abbottabad in 2005, but Qamar said he became frustrated, as there was little chance for him to break into the national side from Swabi.

Ahmed's relatives refused to discuss him or the threats against him, but family friend Mohammad Asghar insisted they were genuine, though there is no record of militants threatening cricketers in Pakistan or of attacks on domestic matches. Indeed, some of Pakistan's best players have hailed from the restive northwest – former one-day captain Shahid Afridi is from the lawless tribal district of Khyber and fast bowler Umar Gul is from Peshawar. Ahmed's former teammate Maqsood Ali, 38, said he always

played with a steely determination. Ahmed was granted a permanent Australian visa in November and quickly made a name for himself bowling for the Melbourne Renegades in the Twenty20 Big Bash League. He will be eligible to play for Australia once is granted citizenship, and the Cricinfo website reported that Cricket Australia is lobbying authorities to fast-track his application to make him available for the start of the Ashes in England in July. If successful he could find himself

pulling on the Baggy Green to represent his adopted land on the hallowed turf of Lord's – a far cry from his earliest matches in his home village Marghuz, eight kilometres (five miles) from Swabi. "There was no cricket ground in his village and local people had reserved a plot of land for the village graveyard. He used to play cricket in a portion of the graveyard," said Sher Bahadur, a teacher at the government-run school in the village. Bahadur said Ahmed was ‘quiet, polite and sober’, not exceptional as a student but completely focused on cricket. –AGENCIES



MARCH 12, 2013

NA resolution asks govt to form commission on Badami Bagh incident missionary schools closed to protest riots

Pakistan may break in the name of religion: MPs

LAHORE: Pakistani Christians closed missionary schools on Monday in protest after a mob torched more than 100 Christian homes following allegations of blasphemy. The schools are considered among the best in Pakistan and are extremely popular with wealthy Muslim families, with pupils taught in English in a disciplined and effective learning environment. “Missionary schools of Lahore will remain closed on Monday on account of massacre in Joseph colony,” Bishop Sebastian Shaw, chairman of the Catholic board, told reporters. Sadiq Daniel, bishop of the church of Pakistan in Sindh said all missionary schools in the province, including those in Karachi, would be closed on Monday. –AGENCIES


ISLAMABAD: minority The members in the National Assembly on Monday warned that “Pakistan may disintegrate in the name of religion even, the basis upon which it came into existence”, as the House passed a resolution to call upon the government to immediately form a commission to probe the cause of Badami Bagh incident. The members feared that Pakistan could possibly lose its reason for existence when the minorities residing in the country were continuously being targeted in the name of religion. Minority members including Asiya Nasir, Akram Masih Gill, Manwer Laal, Ramesh Laal and others condemned the recent incident of targeting Christians in Lahore amidst a blame game amongst

different parties and members including even those who advocated shunning the practice. The House suspended the question hour and started discussion on the prevailing law and order situation in the country with particular reference to the Badami Bagh incident. Initiating the debate, minority member, Asiya Nasir strongly condemned the incident and said that the Punjab government had failed to protect the monitories in the province. Terming the Punjab government as anti-Christian and anti-minorities, she said it was exporting terrorism. She alleged that the PML-N leadership was involved in such incidents. “I fear that the country may disintegrate in the name of religion even”, she said. She

Landmine blast kills three troops in kurram

Gill seeks separate province for minorities appealed the minorities in Punjab not to vote for PML-N in the upcoming general elections. The blame game started with Ramesh Lal of the PPP criticizing Punjab government on the incident. At least three PML-N lawmakers including Junaid Anwaar Chaudhary, Sohail Zia Butt and Sheikh Rohail Asghar were seen perturbed as the minority member from Sindh lashed out at the Punjab government for the incident. “The minorities are leaving Sindh… you do the needful there”, Junaid Anwaar sounded as Ramesh held Punjab government responsible for the incident. Sohail Butt also continued interrupting the minority member during his speech as the latter demanded that effective measures must be taken by the

memo case

KURRAM AGENC Y: A Pakistan Army Captain and two soldiers were killed whereas two others were injured in an improvised explosive device (IED) attack in Upper Orakzai tribal region, officials confirmed. “The attack took place late last night when the security forces convoy was targeted in Arkhanjo Mamozai village in Upper Orakzai tribal region,” the Frontier Corps media spokesperson Major Fazl said. Two other Army personnel were also injured in the attack, officials further said. Security forces launched a search operation in the area after the incident. –AGENCIES

SC gives Haqqani last chance 

3 weeks to appear or face cancellation of passport  SC calls for force if order not obeyed

‘PPP to launch poll campaign from 17th’ TAN D O M U H AM M A D K H AN : Defence Minister Syed Naveed Qamar Monday announced that the PPP will launch its election campaign from March 17‚ a day after the elected assemblies complete their constitutional tenure. Talking to newsmen here‚ he said opposition parties' alliance in Sindh is not in a position to challenge the PPP. The Minister rejected the possibility of any delay in the holding of elections. –ONLINE

clashes rock Dhaka, Opp leaders held DHAKA: Police said they had detained the deputy head of Bangladesh’s main opposition party and a string of top party officials in a major crackdown after clashes rocked the capital Dhaka on Monday. The arrests came after police in armoured vehicles fired rubber bullets to disperse opposition demonstrators, turning the streets of central Dhaka into a battleground for nearly an hour. Police stormed the headquarters of the Bangladesh Nationalist Party (BNP) and took into custody party leaders and activists. –AGENCIES


KARACHI: People gather near the site of a bomb blast in Khurramabad, Landhi No-2. –ONLINE

Pm’s letter to cJ

SC serves notice on NAB chief, others MASOOD REHMAN ISLAMABAD: Hearing a plea filed by Prime Minister Raja Pervaiz Ashraf requesting Chief Justice Iftikhar Muhammad Chaudhry to set up a commission headed by Dr Shoaib Suddal to investigate the allegations of corruption against him in the Rental Power Projects (RPP) case, the Supreme Court on Monday issued notice to the NAB chairman, PMLQ leader Faisal Saleh Hayat and PML-N legislator Khawaja Asif, petitioners in the RPP case. During the hearing, the chief justice told Wasim Sajjad, PM’s counsel, to keep in mind that when the court had already delivered its verdict in the RPP case and the review plea against the verdict had also

been withdrawn by the government, PM’s letter had landed. The CJ asked Wasim Sajjad to tell the court that what it should do at this stage keeping in view the facts. He said not only the PM, but 10 other people were also in the matter. Justice Gulzar Ahmed said NAB was the government’s own institution and even then it had no trust over it. The counsel then stated that this was the main difficulty for them. The chief justice noted that if a PM will question the credibility of the NAB, then what other people will think and take impression from it. He said the PM had written a letter to the chief justice, adding that the chief justice was not a Supreme Court. He said after the court order in the RPP case, constitution of a commission was equal to a review of the whole verdict.

PM gets Nisar’s caretakers list OUR STAFF REPORTER ISLAMABAD: Leader of the Opposition in the National Assembly Chaudhry Nisar Ali Khan on Monday forwarded three names for the position of caretaker premier to Prime Minister Raja Pervaiz Ashraf. In response to the letter of the prime minister, Nisar suggested the names Justice (r) Shakirullah Jan, Justice (r) Nasir Aslam Zahid and Rasool Bux Palejo for the position of the caretaker prime minister. The opposition leader sent the reply to the prime minister after consulting other opposition parties as well. Talking to media outside the Parliament House, Nisar said the tenure of assemblies

provincial government to safeguard the minorities living there. Akram Masih Gill demanded of the Parliament to grant a separate province to the minorities if the government could not protect them. He warned those in power not to create the same circumstances which led to the creation of Pakistan (in the name of religion). He said the parliament should also take steps for effective legislation for checking misuse of blasphemy laws. Manwer Lal said that the government had failed to provide protection to the minorities. Demanding resignation from the chief ministers of Sindh and Punjab on bad law and order situation, Khawaja Sohail Mansoor said that the government must ascertain the reasons behind the

violence in Punjab and other provinces. Khawaja Saad Rafiq said that Punjab government while accepting the responsibility had taken stern action against those involved in the incident and 150 people had been arrested who would be tried in courts. Abdul Qadir Baloch said that it was an incident of intolerance and terrorism. He said “we should not indulge in the blame game rather join hands to plan national strategy to defeat the menace of terrorism and extremism.” Bushra Gohar described it as an incident of extremism and terrorism and demanded that the culprits involved in this crime must be brought to justice. Towards the end of the proceedings, PML-N female legislator, Anusha Rehman pointed out quorum thus frustrating the government bid to pass a piece of legislation pertaining to anti-terrorism.

would expire after five days and caretaker setup must be finalised in time. He further said the homework on caretaker government in Punjab had been completed. He renounced the statement of Information Minister Qamar Zaman Kaira regarding the names suggested for the caretaker prime minister. It is important to note that Kaira had termed the list given by Nisar as a joke and targeted the PML-N for including the name of Palejo. As the National Assembly’s tenure is going to end on March 16, the government has failed to give any name for the caretaker premier, which generated various rumours in the country. Article 224 A of the Constitution

bounds both the parties to have a consultative process on two names each coming from treasury and opposition. In case of disagreement on the names forwarded, the matter will be referred to a bi-partisan committee of treasury and opposition having four members each and if in three days there is no agreement, the matter will be referred to the chief election commissioner for final decision within two days. Same procedure will be adopted for the appointment of caretaker setups in the provinces where governors and chief ministers will forge consensus. However, the PML-N is confident that the matter will be resolved before March 16.

Cigarette shop bombing kills two in Karachi K ARAC HI : An explosion at a cigarette shop killed at least two people and wounded seven others in Karachi’s Landhi area on Monday, police said. The incident took place in the poor, crowded Khurramabad neighbourhood of the southern port city of 18 million people, which is plagued by murders, kidnappings and politically linked violence. “At least two people were killed after the explosion at a cigarette shop,” local police official Mohammad Khalid. Bomb disposal official Abdul Hameed said initial investigations showed that the bomb was planted under a motorcycle and detonated with a timer. According to the initial report by bomb disposal officials, the bomb contained two kilograms of explosive material and was placed near a neighbourhood pan and cigarette shop. A man and his twelveyear old son were killed as a result of the bomb explosion, which, Khalid said, also damaged eight motorcycles and three nearby shops. The injured also included two children. Dr Seemi Jamali, incharge of the emergency department at Jinnah hospital, told DawnNews that some of the injured were in critical condition.

I SL AM ABAD: Rejecting a plea seeking exemption from personal appearance, the Supreme Court on Monday gave a last chance to the former ambassador to the US Hussain Haqqani to positively appear before it within three weeks, otherwise face a punitive action, which could deprive him from his Pakistani passport. A nine-member larger bench comprising led by Chief Justice Iftikhar Muhammad Chaudhry was hearing a case pertaining to a controversial memo sent to former US military chief Admiral Mike Mullen by Hussain Haqqani seeking direct US intervention to avert a possible overthrow of the civilian government by the military. The pleas seeking exemption from personal appearance was filed by Haqqani’s counsel Asma Jahangir contending that her client was unable to come to the country due to security concerns, which the court rejected and ordered Haqqani to ensure his presence before the court within three weeks, otherwise his passport might be cancelled. The court warned that a forced action could also be taken against him under the law if he did not come back, as in his affidavit he had assured the court that he will appear before the court on four weeks’ notice, when required. During the hearing, Attorney General Irfan Qadir informed the court that foolproof security arrangements will be made on Haqqani’s return. He said Haqqani will be dropped to Serena Hotel directly from airport through helicopter, adding that he could use helicopter for movement. Asma Jahangir said she had informed her client about the security arrangements, however, he had refused to return back saying he still did not trust the state authorities, as the government was incapable of

providing him security. The court expressed displeasure, noting that he had promised to return. The court said Haqqani should inform his counsel about his return within two weeks. The court directed the concerned authorities to send a copy of the court order to the Pakistan’s Embassy in the US. Later, the hearing was adjourned for three weeks. The memo scandal had erupted after Haqqani was first named in the controversy by US businessman Mansoor Ijaz, who had said that it was the former ambassador who had asked him (Ijaz) to deliver the memo to the then US military chief days after the May 2, 2011 US raid on Osama bin Laden’s compound. A judicial commission appointed by the Supreme Court has held that Haqqani was the originator and architect of the memo. Haqqani was implicated in a scandal in which he had a memo delivered to top US General Admiral Mike Mullen offering greater cooperation against the Pakistan military in the aftermath of the Abbottabad raid on May 2, 2011. Earlier, on last hearing, the court had repeated its earlier order to the interior ministry to provide security to Hussain Haqqani upon his arrival, stay and then departure from Pakistan. The court had ordered that Interior Secretary Khawaja Siddique Akbar and Inspector General of Islamabad Police Bani Ameen Khan should meet and make arrangements for Haqqani’s security. A letter written by Haqqani and presented before the court on last hearing had had stated that: “A number of self-appointed guardians of Pakistan’s integrity and ideology have targeted me and routinely send me threatening messages by email, twitter and on phone.” He had added that the authorities in the US had also repeatedly investigated the threats he was receiving.

Senators react strongly to Joseph Colony arson 

MPs term attack on Christians a failure of intelligence, police  Point out misuse of blasphemy law


ISLAMABAD: Reacting strongly over the Joseph Colony incident in Lahore in which more than 150 houses of the Christian citizens were put on fire in the name of blasphemy, the legislators in the upper house of the Parliament termed it total failure of the police, intelligence agencies and misuse of the existence blasphemous law in the country. The senators said that such types of shameful incident badly damage the image of Pakistan so misuse of the blasphemous law was not acceptable. They regretted that nobody was punished over the false allegations leveled against any non-Muslim. The Constitution

guarantees equal rights for all citizens irrespective of their caste, colour or creed but regretted that all security organisations failed to protect them. The miscreants and terrorists were becoming so strong that they can target any sect, any group and everyone across the country, saying the situation revealed that the government totally failed in fulfilling its constitutional responsibilities of protecting human lives and properties. They termed the continuation of terrorist activities in Balochistan, Karachi, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and Lahore were well-planned conspiracies over the existence of the country. The senators expressed these view over debating the issue on adjournment motion

presented by Mohsin Laghari and Saeed Ghani. Senator Laghari said the incident started between the two persons (one Muslim and other Christian) while they were drinking (wine) and made allegations against non-Muslim. Latter, through a well-planned conspiracy, the houses of Christians first evacuated by the police then looted and latter put on fire. “It was the negligence of the law enforcement agencies,” he maintained. Senator Ghani said some times ago such allegation leveled against Rimsha Masih, which later proved false but the perpetrators were set free because they were Muslims. If the complainant in that case was punished then no one would have dare to give wrong statement against anyone either Muslim or non-Muslim.

He requested the religious scholars not to misuse the blasphemous law. Senator Haji Adeel said that the world was condemning Pakistan over this shameful incident as the world condemned India when houses of Muslims were put on fire in Gujarat (India). He also questioned that why police not arrested the complainant when he was drunked. Senator Robina Khan strongly condemned the Joseph Colony incident and demanded strict punishment for the persons involved in torching the houses of the Christian citizens in the name of blasphemy. She also criticised the federal and the provincial governments and termed the incident as the failure of the law enforcement

agencies. She recommended the house to summon high ups of all security agencies and ask them to brief the house about the law and order situation in the country. Senator Mushahid Husssain Syed said that it was an organised move against the minorities which was provide shield by the local police. He said that either federal government or provincial even though the police, intelligence departments and other security departments also completely failed to establish peace in the country, adding the Punjab government failed to deliver and provide protection to minorities and it was not acceptable. Senator Kalsoom Perveen from the Balochistan National Party also condemned the Joseph Colony incident.

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