Only in Pakistan
March 19, 2010
Travelling Text by Anila Q. Agha
March 20, 2010

Most Pakistanis are living a life of quiet desperation. Her slant on an average middle class household (or is it an upper middle class?) reminded me of the popular soap opera, “Desperate Housewives!” Things might look normal from distance but underneath it all, a virtual volcano is smoldering which might erupt any minute. The residents of Wisteria Lane live lives of quiet desperation too By Fareeha Qayoom

By Fareeha Qayoom

I

dropped by at a friend’s workplace the other day for a cup of tea and bit of socializing. It was three pm in the afternoon. It was hot. I had been on the road all day driving my sister to and fro. I sandwiched this visit between her visits. I had to go back and collect her but in the meantime I was all set to kill some time and look up a friend at the same time. The visit was like an oasis in the middle of desert.

I hate small talk so we straightaway plunged into talking about serious stuff, you know, his family, news of our mutual friends, the state of economy, the exorbitant utility bills, the weird security checks at his workplace; basically, life as we know it in Pakistan. At one point, I asked him, so what do you think? Who is in charge of our country? He pondered for a bit and then said, “Allah.” I asked him again, “Yes, I agree, he is always in charge but on paper – who do you think is in charge?” He couldn’t come up with an answer. I wasn’t sure either. (We keep coming back to this odd refrain, “sub kuch Allah par chor do,” [translation: leave everything to God] to quote Shahzad Roy’s song, Lagga Reh! He struck a chord when he sang that song.)

bismillah
Photo by elif ayse

Is it our government? Is it the TTP? Is it the prime minister? Is it the president? Is it the Army? Is it the people? Or is it the government utility companies like LESCO (WAPDA) or Sui Gas? Or is it the producers or the consumers? Is it the IMF, World Bank and Asian Development Bank? Who the heck is in charge? “There are three A’s running Pakistan – Allah, Army and America!” said one guest on a TV talk show recently (forgot the names unfortunately – sorry). He struck another chord.

My sister (the one who is on visit from USA after a long absence) thinks it’s all a smokescreen. We should be blaming ourselves for all our problems. We shouldn’t blame USA or Afghanistan or India or our government or lack of education or our population explosion or our poverty and ignorance or our brain drain or lack of opportunities or rampant unemployment, bankruptcies, lack of governance on external sources. We should blame ourselves. Americans apparently do not take too much interest in their country like we do. They pay their taxes and they choose their leaders and they forget about the governance issues. They do not talk to death the invariable problems that might litter their days because happily for them, they are not littered with so many problems anyway.

According to my sister, living in Pakistan is hard because dealing with load-shedding, traffic on the roads, noise pollution, people’s general inconsideration for their fellow man, unprofessional and whiny behavior of most vendors and high prices (she’s trying to get her art catalog printed from Pakistan, after this experience she’d rather deal with China next time!) adds at least six hours of hard work on top of an average day. It’s a pressure cooker high stress situation that would drive anybody around the bend and she’d rather not deal with it if she can help it, thank you very much! It might be politically incorrect but she hardly misses Pakistan. Apparently, all she misses is her family and friends from Pakistan, and may be basant but since spring is no longer celebrated in Lahore anyway, she can live without her native country if given a choice.

We visited a cousin who lives in GOR 1 the other day. We had to go through the aggravation of going through a road block, two security checks, constantly being interrupted by impatient honking drivers in big cars while conversing with the policeman, having to move the car forwards and backwards and then being finally allowed to move; (for those of you who don’t know if you haven’t visited Lahore, GOR 1 is a well planned green residential district for the snooty government officials – the minute you cross over, you are transported into another country as it were)…according to my sister, the rest of the city is for the riff-raff and this is the place for people who really matter…the contrast is truly amazing. She wasn’t joking when she said this. She repeated her observation to our cousin too. She was quick to retort, “You live in Defence too!” “It’s hardly the same,” my sister quickly retorted back.

Looking through my sister’s objective eyes at today’s Pakistan was a unique experience for me. Social injustice at up close and personal is not attractive. We might call ourselves Muslims but we hardily practice our religion. We sold out long time ago, we just never realized it. Might is right in all spheres of life. Be that on the road, dealing with shop keepers, at home or at the workplace. “Playing humble in Pakistan doesn’t work,” as one cousin (based in Karachi) advised my sister. Apparently, you have to be somebody ‘real important,’ otherwise lie like crazy and create a facade!  (My sister might be considered a big shot in Pakistani terms, an artist with loads of solo art showings under her belt, dual citizenship, an enviable lifestyle, a brand new career in academics, a couple of nice degrees, a distinguished successful corporate career that she left behind in Pakistan but she doesn’t take herself seriously enough and is unnecessarily humble in our cousin’s opinion!)

Life in Pakistan is about creating visions of grandeur (while the unprivileged around you are forced to beg, borrow or steal or simply die of poverty and deprivation!). If you don’t want to indulge in this behavior, be prepared to be trampled on by anyone and everyone higher on top of this particular food chain. Buy the biggest car you can afford. Hog the road. Eat at the best restaurants, wear designer labels, talk like certified legally blonde only interested in spending money left, right and center, parties and designer lifestyle, flash your money, your four Kanal house in a posh neighborhood, your influential and powerful friends and family, your acres of land in some far-away village, etc, etc. and yes you need at least 250-300K per month minimum to maintain such a fancy lifestyle to be able to say to your peers – “hello, I exist and I matter in the bigger scheme of things!” Sigh. Most Pakistanis are living a life of quiet desperation.  Her slant on an average middle class household (or is it an upper middle class?) reminded me of the popular soap opera, “Desperate Housewives!” Things might look normal from distance but underneath it all, a virtual volcano is smoldering which might erupt any minute.  The residents of Wisteria Lane live lives of quiet desperation too.

This brings me full circle – who is really in charge of Pakistan? Can order be restored anytime soon?

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Fareeha Qayoom
Fareeha Qayoom
Publisher and editor-in-chief of Tkfr.com and former print editions of The Knit-Xtyle Fashion Review (tkfr), a trade newsletter for the textile and apparel industry of Pakistan. In short, Publisher, editor, and a blogger. In addition, she has served as Managing Editor of MIT Technology Review Pakistan, print and web editions (2015-16). Total of 7 editions were published under her leadership by ITU, Punjab's first public technology university under the license of MIT Technology Review (USA). She has also managed Value Mag in the same capacity, a real estate and lifestyle magazine for Value TV - 2008-9. Published freelancer for The News on Sunday 1994-96. Fareeha has over 21 years of solid management experience – of managing brands (like Harley Davidson, Munsingwear, Chaps, Chaps Ralph Lauren etc.,), Retailers (like Target, Mervyns, Kohl's, Marks and Spencer etc.,), customers (VPs, Product Managers, Unit Managers, and Buyers), and products (apparel - woven, knits, men's, women's, children's, Print and online publishing units), projects, teams, and processes, information, content, and data, staff, vendors, and time. Versatile and adaptable with international exposure, communication and language skills (oral and written), and a consistent track record of achieving company targets and objectives, plus a MA in Political Science from Punjab University, a MSc in Economics from La Salle University, Louisiana, USA, and a BA in Economics from Kinnaird College for Women.

456 Comments

  1. Why Zardari wants to sign bills like Obama
    Saturday, March 20, 2010
    By Tariq Butt

    ISLAMABAD: On the eve of becoming a figurehead president, Asif Zardari is hectically engaged in keeping his office high profile and relevant, and has held several such ceremonies for this purpose which were highly publicised on the advice of key aides.
    http://www.thenews.com.pk/daily_detail.asp?id=230063

    “Zardari is following the pattern of the US president, who signs important bills and packages, and approves key policies at special ceremonies at the White House,” an official told The News.

    He said since some of his closest aides had been abroad for years and knew the political significance of signing bills into laws at special functions in the US, they suggested to Zardari to do the same. The president intensified this process when he put his signature on the recommendations of the prime minister at a function, raising salaries of the Supreme Court and high court judges. An elaborate statement was also issued by the presidency.

    Similar high-profile ceremonies have been organised when the president put his signatures on the National Finance Commission Award, Women Harassment at Workplace Bill, the Organs Transplant Bill, the Amendment in the Pakistan Penal Code for Protection of Women Bill, repeal of Removal from Service Bill and Labour Welfare Bill over a week and so. A conference on Sufism was also held at the Aiwan-e-Sadr apart from the allocation of hefty Baitul Maal amount to bear expenses of marriages of women. At no point, the prime minister figured at the presidency.

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  2. Foreign dictation tampering Pakistan’s progress: Shahbaz
    Saturday, 20 Mar, 2010

    LAHORE: Chief Minister of Punjab Shahbaz Sharif on Thurday said that terrorism is the worst form of crisis faced by the country, and if not solved, it will serve as a death warrant for the entire nation.
    http://www.dawn.com/wps/wcm/connect/dawn-content-library/dawn/news/pakistan/03-foreign-dictation-tampering-pakistans-progress-shahbaz-ss-10

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  3. Teflon tiger
    By Irfan Husain
    Saturday, 20 Mar, 2010

    Pity the poor tiger: hunted to the brink of extinction, it now has to suffer the indignity of having its image expropriated by the likes of Nawaz Sharif and his faction of the Pakistan Muslim League.

    With Musharraf setting up his own All Pakistan Muslim League, there are now so many clones of this tired brand that the voter can be excused for being confused. Sheikh Rashid has his own one-man party under the label of the Awami Muslim League, while Ejazul Haq struts around under the banner of the Pakistan Muslim League-Zia. And let’s not forget the ‘Q’ League, the Convention League and the Functional League. For all I know, there are many other Leagues lurking out there in the woodwork.

    http://www.dawn.com/wps/wcm/connect/dawn-content-library/dawn/the-newspaper/columnists/14-irfan-husain-teflon-tiger-030-zj-14

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  4. Rudderless
    Saturday, March 20, 2010
    Tayyab Siddiqui

    Seldom has a government taken the reigns of office amidst such public enthusiasm and anticipation as the coalition government of Gilani. The people’s struggle against eight years of military misrule had finally been redeemed with the dawn of a new democratic era, giving them new hopes.

    The priority issues that the Gilani government said it aimed to address during its first 100 days included relief measures for the poor, austerity drive, supremacy of parliament, freedom of information, and national reconciliation based on restoration of law and order with all institutions subject to democratic control by the government. He pledged to start a national employment scheme to alleviate poverty under which one person from each poor family was to be provided a job. Also, plots of 80 square yards were to be allotted to the homeless. However, there has been no action in this regard, nor any details regarding the mechanism and modalities to achieve the target have been revealed.

    Prime Minister Gilani also committed to bring stringent financial measures to reduce non-development expenditure and limiting the perks and privileges of ministers and officials. Today, Gilani is presiding over the largest cabinet in Pakistan’s history and most of his ministers have suspect record of being bank defaulters and NAB convicts. Some of them are infamous for their corruption and dismayed record of performance.

    http://www.thenews.com.pk/daily_detail.asp?id=230096

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  5. Made in Pakistan
    Anjum Niaz
    Sunday, 21 Mar, 2010

    “A successful man is one who can lay a firm foundation with the bricks that others throw at him” is the mantra for making it big, especially on alien soil. Would it not be wonderful if we too could make it ‘big’ and boast a billionaire? I said to myself as I wistfully looked out of the window of my airplane and saw a parked Boeing 747 with the letters “India” written boldly across the fuselage. We were in North Carolina, the venue of high flying businessmen mooting ideas on how to make more money. Mukesh Ambani, rated 4th richest man in the world had flown from India in his own jet. Nita, his charming wife and business partner stayed back to look after the family fortune. No one from Pakistan was there. “Well my sister lives in Karachi,” was the closest I got to hear on Pakistan from another Indian billionaire Azim Premji.

    http://www.dawn.com/wps/wcm/connect/dawn-content-library/dawn/the-newspaper/columnists/made-in-pakistan-130

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  6. De facto versus de jure
    By Ardeshir Cowasjee
    Sunday, 21 Mar, 2010

    The other day I had a conversation with a man less than half my age, a well-educated democratic Pakistani, and on-the-ball as far as happenings are concerned in what is not Jinnah’s Pakistan but rather a mishmash of Ziaul Haq’s theocracy and a corrupt, dysfunctional, governance-free autocracy.

    A question I posed: who now is the most powerful man in Pakistan? Without pondering, his immediate response was: the chief of army staff. Now, this happens to be a de facto reality, no matter what anyone may say to the contrary. News items in the media, almost on a daily basis, tell us who Gen Ashfaq Kayani has met — from the US secretary of state and all other visiting US civilian or military fireman down to functionaries of our own government.

    http://www.dawn.com/wps/wcm/connect/dawn-content-library/dawn/the-newspaper/columnists/ardeshir-cowasjee-de-facto-versus-de-jure-130

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  7. Days of rage
    Sunday, March 21, 2010
    The mob violence that so badly disrupted life in Islamabad and Rawalpindi all through Friday should not be dismissed lightly. The protests against the hike in transport rates went well beyond just that issue. The illogical claims of the interior ministry, that somehow ‘jihadi’ elements or foreigners were involved in the wave of unrest that swept across the capital, disrupting life and resulting in some substantial losses as shops, vehicles and other property were destroyed, make no sense at all. It was quite evident that people infuriated by the ceaseless price hike were behind the violence, during which a vehicle of the UN team investigating Benazir Bhutto’s murder also came under attack.

    http://www.thenews.com.pk/daily_detail.asp?id=230263

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  8. With no language but a cry
    Sunday, March 21, 2010
    Ghazi Salahuddin

    What is Pakistan saying at this time – to rest of the world and to itself? Is it something that is stated in an unambiguous language or is it an incomprehensible babble? Or is it just a cry in pain, a desperate call for help?

    Many years ago, in an emotional response to a particularly dreadful event in Karachi in which scores of lives were lost, I had quoted Tennyson to reflect the feelings of “An infant crying in the night; /An infant crying for the light, /And with no language but a cry.” It is the impression of “with no language but a cry” that seems relevant in the case of so many incidents of random mob violence, angry protests, and unstructured eruption of grievances.

    In the immediate context, take the example of the protest demonstrations staged in Bhara Kahu and Faizabad neighbourhoods of Islamabad. The protest began early on March 18 against a sharp rise in transport fares but continued even after the administration had withdrawn the increase in fares. It all seemed to begin on the spur of the moment and the manner in which the ordinary people, including students, joined the crowd is significant.

    http://www.thenews.com.pk/daily_detail.asp?id=230268

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  9. Over the top
    Falling

    Sunday, March 21, 2010
    Masood Hasan

    As institutions and all that we once held in great esteem fall around us like ninepins in a bowling alley where the players have gone berserk, very few of us now have the luxury of taking a step back and simply evaluating our position. Instead, we seem to be swept along the crazy eddies, hardly able to get a foothold and more and more dependent on good luck and some divine intervention to see us through. It is not a nice feeling and many people urge observers of the Pakistan scene to look for the brighter streak – silver linings are no longer available for us. Nations are often at crossroads in their journeys. We seem to be permanently parked here.

    And it is not that hard to be buffeted daily by examples that force the most obstinate amongst us to hold our heads in anguish and despair. A great many people in Pakistan now have access to the internet. Over 22 million at last count and growing. The number of mobile users is astronomical; 97.6 million three months back. But a random visit to the internet and you receive a resounding slap in the face from companies, organisations, airlines, tour operators – the list is long. Millions are on the internet selling goods, services of every kind and offering popcorn machines to miracle anti-ageing creams, but just about most of them draw the line when doing business with Pakistan and when that happens, all you feel is despair and despondency.
    http://www.thenews.com.pk/daily_detail.asp?id=230269

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  10. Twin city riots
    Dawn Editorial
    Sunday, 21 Mar, 2010
    Whether or not political elements had a hand in the recent riots in Rawalpindi and Islamabad is entirely beside the point. Almost any volatile situation can be exploited by vested interests or those simply looking to let off steam, and as such pointing fingers at this or that group serves no purpose whatsoever.

    http://www.dawn.com/wps/wcm/connect/dawn-content-library/dawn/the-newspaper/editorial/19-twin-city-riots-130-hh-14

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  11. HRCP report portrays dismal state of affairs
    By Iftikhar A. Khan
    Tuesday, 23 Mar, 2010

    ISLAMABAD: The year 2009 saw a sharp increase in violence against women and religious minorities, while new incidents of enforced disappearance continued to be reported throughout the year from across the country, said a report released by the Human Rights Commission of Pakistan here on Monday.

    http://www.dawn.com/wps/wcm/connect/dawn-content-library/dawn/the-newspaper/front-page/19-hrcp-report-portrays-dismal-state-of-affairs-330-hh-07

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  12. PM dismisses talk of political crisis over PML-N about-face
    By Our Staff Reporter
    Saturday, 27 Mar, 2010
    ISLAMABAD: Dismissing talk of a political crisis over the proposed 18th constitution amendment bill, Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani said on Friday he was ready to meet anyone to address the PML-N’s reservations over the proposed procedure for appointment of judges.

    Talking to journalists after inaugurating Aiwan-i-Quaid at Fatima Jinnah Park, he said he had talked to the chairman of Parliamentary Committee on Constitutional Reforms, Mian Raza Rabbani, over the issue, and that it was for the committee to work out a course of action.

    http://www.dawn.com/wps/wcm/connect/dawn-content-library/dawn/the-newspaper/front-page/pm-ready-to-meet-anyone-over-judges-appointment-730

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  13. Show me the money!
    By Irfan Husain
    Saturday, 27 Mar, 2010

    If you think about it, much of the money that has built small pockets of affluence across Pakistan has its origins overseas. Ranging from heroin to exported workers, and from cash skimmed off arms deals to diverted aid, many fortunes in Pakistan rest on illegal foundations.

    This is why the Pakistani ruling elites are forever on the prowl for new cash cows abroad. The United States, being the richest country in the world, is an obvious target. Luckily for us, American interests in the region bring this particular cow to the milking shed at regular intervals. And when, as happened after the American cow wandered off for a while when the Soviets withdrew from Afghanistan, our rulers went into a terminal sulk with our perennial benefactors.

    http://www.dawn.com/wps/wcm/connect/dawn-content-library/dawn/the-newspaper/columnists/irfan-husain-show-me-the-money-730

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  14. From NWFP to Khyber Pakhtunkhwa
    By Ismail Khan
    Thursday, 01 Apr, 2010

    PESHAWAR: It took 109 years to correct a historical wrong and what a journey it has been. It was in 1901, when the North-West Frontier Province was carved out of Punjab. The province was merged into what was called One Unit in 1955, with Lahore becoming the capital of the new administrative unit.

    Gen Yahya Khan dissolved the One Unit in July 1970 and restored the provinces of the NWFP, Punjab, Sindh and Balochistan. The 1973 Constitution continued with the British nomenclature.
    http://www.dawn.com/wps/wcm/connect/dawn-content-library/dawn/the-newspaper/front-page/from-nwfp-to-khyber-pakhtunkhwa-140

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  15. Pakistan president Asif Zardari gives up constitutional powers
    Asif Zardari, the president of Pakistan, has been stripped of constitutional powers in an attempt to restore the authority of the country’s prime minister and parliament.
    By Saima Mohsin in Karachi and Dean Nelson in New Delhi
    Published: 6:30PM BST 01 Apr 2010

    The move, which has been hailed as an “historic moment” for the country’s democratic forces, was agreed upon by Pakistan’s main political parties and effectively restores the country’s 1973 constitution. It also overturns a series of amendments introduced by former military rulers General Zia ul Haq and General Pervez Musharraf.
    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldnews/asia/pakistan/7545477/Pakistan-president-Asif-Zardari-gives-up-constitutional-powers.html

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  16. Restoration of constitution to strengthen parliament: PM
    Friday, 02 Apr, 2010

    ISLAMABAD: Prime Minister Syed Yusuf Raza Gilani on Friday said the restoration of 1973 Constitution to its original form will strengthen sovereignty of the parliament and benefit the common man.
    http://www.dawn.com/wps/wcm/connect/dawn-content-library/dawn/news/pakistan/06-restoration-of-constitution-to-strengthen-parliament-pm-rs-04

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  17. Demise of the CCP
    Saturday, April 03, 2010
    The Competition Commission of Pakistan is an institution that is supposed to protect the interests of 90 per cent of the population of this country from being exploited by the various business groups. Can political parties in the National Assembly and the Senate explain their silence on this vital issue of public importance? Are our elected representatives not required to protect the consumers from being overcharged by cartels and monopolies? The unfortunate sad reality is that except for Shaukat Tarin, who stood up to protect the CCP from being exterminated, no other politician across the divide has made an attempt to provide some sort of protection to consumers. Where are the PPP, the PML-N, the PML-Q, the MQM, the JUI, the JI, the ANP and others? How do they explain their criminal silence on this vital issue? It seems that the ruling political elite and the establishment are interested more in protecting the cartels, of which they are beneficiaries, than the common man of this country. Where is the PPP with its claim of roti, kapra aur makan? Or the PML-N with its rhetoric of standing up for the people? And the MQM which never tires of claiming to represent the ‘lower-middle-class’? The ANP, a party with a ‘socialist’ ideology, is also silent on this issue. As for the religious parties, the less said the better, for they have lost all credibility.

    The government’s decision to allow the ordinance to lapse and the opposition’s silence give credence to charges that our bureaucracy and political elite no longer have a stake in this country, for all of them have shifted their assets to foreign countries. But do they realise that the anger, frustration and sense of deprivation may unleash a ferocious backlash which will have very grave repercussions for this country? The Competition Commission of Pakistan was a weak relief valve in a system dominated by hoarders, black marketers, opportunists and men whose sole aim is to make quick bucks and then shift their wealth to foreign bank accounts.

    Malik Tariq Ali

    Lahore

    http://www.thenews.com.pk/daily_detail.asp?id=232346

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  18. Competition Ordinance likely to be re-promulgated today
    By Kalbe Ali
    Sunday, 04 Apr, 2010

    ISLAMABAD: The finance ministry forwarded the summary for re-promulgation of Competition Ordinance 2010 to the law ministry for vetting, officials told Dawn on Saturday.

    http://www.dawn.com/wps/wcm/connect/dawn-content-library/dawn/the-newspaper/national/19-competition-ordinance-likely-to-be-repromulgated-today-440-hh-09

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  19. Faith in democracy
    Posted by Nadeem F. Paracha on 04 1st, 2010 | Comments (61)
    Faith in democracy

    Islam holds an important place in the workings of society and thus politics of Pakistan, a fact even some of the most secular political parties of the country cannot ignore. Just what is the religious make-up of Pakistan’s political parties in this context, especially regarding their response to the rise of extremist violence? Let’s explore.

    http://blog.dawn.com/2010/04/01/faith-in-democracy/

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  20. Elahi blames Nawaz for Abbottabad crisis

    LAHORE: The situation worsened in Abbottabad just because of the selfishness of Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) chief Nawaz Sharif, but the martyrs’ sacrifices would not go to waste, Pakistan Muslim League-Quaid (PML-Q) senior central leader Chaudhry Pervaiz Elahi said on Monday. He condemned the bloodshed in Abbottabad, and said it was happening due to Nawaz Sharif’s personal interest in renaming NWFP to Khyber-Pakhtoonkhwa. Elahi said that the main motive behind Nawaz’s selfishness was just to get the premiership for the third time. Elahi said that the PML-Q fully supported the people of Hazara and would ensure that the victims of police violence get justice on time. He said NWFP was renamed Khyber-Pakhtoonkhwa, with the complicity of the Pakistan People’s Party, PML-N and Awami National Party (ANP), and the government had done a grave injustice by opening fire at the protestors. Elahi said torture on unarmed protesters had unveiled the real face of the so-called democratic government. He said it was a matter of great concern that the injured were suffering in the hospitals, as the police was stopping citizens from reaching out to them, by baton charging the citizens. staff report

    http://www.dailytimes.com.pk/default.asp?page=2010\04\13\story_13-4-2010_pg7_29

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  21. Senate debates 18th Amendment, Hazara situation
    Updated at: 1800 PST, Tuesday, April 13, 2010
    ISLAMABAD: The Senate members debated the 18th Amendment Bill besides the chaotic situation of the Hazara Division today.

    Yesterday, the bill was introduced in the Senate. Adviser to prime minister and chairman parliamentary committee on constitutional reforms Mian Raza Rabbani moved the 18th Amendment bill in the Senate after Leader of the House Syed Nayyer Hussain Bukhari moved the motion to suspend the business of the House.

    The PML-Q, which did not oppose the bill in the National Assembly, took a U-turn when Wasim Sajjad opposed the bill in the upper house of parliament.

    Senator Raza Rabbani said the Bill was the outcome of the efforts of Benazir Bhutto, while Wasim Sajjad claimed that PNL-Q had asked the committee to not to change the name of NWFP unilaterally but their written disapproval was ignored.

    Federal Minister Azam Swati called for removing concerns of people of Hazara.

    Participating in the debate PML-N senator Ishaq Dar said if the new name was not acceptable PML-Q should not have signed the bill and it was not the end PML-N might consider a new consensus name. ‘This should not be made a political issue’.

    Babar Ghouri of MQM said our demand of complete provincial autonomy was not met and suggested for 19th Amendment to settle unresolved issues. He also recommended for allocating two National Assembly seats for Pakistanis held in Bangladesh.

    http://www.thenews.com.pk/updates.asp?id=102766

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  22. “I am still not powerless”, says Zardari

    ISLAMABAD: President Asif Ali Zardari has said that he does not think that he has become powerless after signing of 18th amendment bill but the doors of dictatorship have been closed forever and no one think of subverting the constitution.

    “Democracy is my power and I love democracy”, he said this while talking to media men and addressing the signing ceremony of 18th amendment constitutional bill here at Presidency.

    http://www.onlinenews.com.pk/details.php?id=161658

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  23. Supreme Court cannot strike down 18th Amendment: Aitzaz PDF Print E-mail

    ISLAMABAD, Apr 20 (APP): Barrister Aitzaz Ahsan has said that Supreme Court cannot strike down 18th Amendment as it is passed by two third majority of the two Houses of Parliament.He was talking to mediamen here in the Supreme Court building on Tuesday.Elaborating his viewpoint, he said there are two kinds of legislation done by Parliament, the first is passed by simple majority while the other can be passed by two third majority of two Houses of Parliament, that is supreme.“The legislation approved with two third majority cannot be struck down,” he added.

    “We should not go for confrontation. We shall respect Parliament,” he said in reply to a question.

    The prominent lawyers’ leader opined that in past, Parliament had rejected certain Supreme Court’s rulings including amendments to Articles 178 and 270.

    He said on the whole 18th Amendment was a good thing, from shifting of powers to provincial autonomy issues.

    http://www.app.com.pk/en_/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=101143&Itemid=2

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  24. CJ forms five-member bench to take up petitions
    Saturday, 24 Apr, 2010

    ISLAMABAD: Chief Justice Iftikhar Muhammad Chaudhry on Saturday constituted a five-member bench to hear petitions challenging parts of the 18th Amendment.

    Headed by Justice Nasir Ul Mulk, the bench comprises Justice Raja Fayyaz Ahmed, Justice Jawad S Khawja, Justice Rehmat Hussain Jafferi and Justice Tariq Parvez.

    http://www.dawn.com/wps/wcm/connect/dawn-content-library/dawn/news/pakistan/03-cj-forms-five-member-bench-to-take-up-petitions-ss-09

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  25. Nawaz, Zardari tried to clip judiciary’s power: Imran
    Updated at: 2035 PST, Sunday, April 25, 2010
    LAHORE: Pakistan Tehrik-e-Insaf chairman Imran Khan says that Pakistan Muslim League-N (PML-N) chief Nawaz Sharif and President Asif Ali Zardari made an attempt to clip the judiciary’s power by passing the 18th Amendment.

    Speaking to media after leading a protest rally against prolong loadshedding and inflation here on Sunday, Khan said he would thwart the government’s design against the judiciary.

    “If Nawaz Sharif and Asif Ali Zardari are true patriot, why don’t they bring their money from abroad?” he asked.

    “Despite the fact that Pakistan has no water, no electricity, people are jobless, factories are lying closed, a hefty amount of Rs30 million is being spent on the President of this poor country,” he said.

    He said responsibility lies with the youth to wage a struggle for getting their rights and to change the country’s appalling state

    http://www.thenews.com.pk/updates.asp?id=103641

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  26. Competition law re-promulgated on 18th: official
    By Kalbe Ali
    Friday, 23 Apr, 2010
    ISLAMABAD: The government said on Thursday it had re-promulgated the Competition Ordinance 2010, but the media and the Competition Commission of Pakistan did not come to know about it.

    Talking to reporters after a meeting of the Senate Standing Committee on Finance, Additional Finance Secretary Asif Bajwa said the president had re-promulgated the ordinance on April 18.

    http://www.dawn.com/wps/wcm/connect/dawn-content-library/dawn/the-newspaper/front-page/competition-law-repromulgated-on-18th-official-340

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  27. Democracy should continue to grow in Pakistan: Nawaz
    Sunday, 16 May, 2010

    LAHORE: PML-N Chief Nawaz Sharif said on Sunday that there is a conscious effort being made to create rifts between the parliament and the judiciary in Pakistan.

    http://www.dawn.com/wps/wcm/connect/dawn-content-library/dawn/news/pakistan/03-democracy-should-continue-to-grow-in-pakistan-nawaz-ss-13

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  28. Musharraf says PPP, PML-N failed to govern Pakistan

    Daily Times Monitor

    LAHORE: Former president Pervez Musharraf has said the Pakistan People’s Party (PPP) and the Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) have failed to govern Pakistan, a private TV channel reported on Sunday.

    According to the channel, Musharraf confirmed that he would contest the next general election as he had decided to join politics on the demand of the general public. He was addressing the first ever meeting of his party, All-Pakistan Muslim League, at his residence in London.

    Over 50 eminent personalities, including Barrister Muhammad Ali Saif and former presidential spokesman Rashid Qureshi, attended the meeting.

    Musharraf said politics should be above personal interests, and rulers must serve the nation, as the country was facing multiple challenges.

    He also said he would return to the country and would face circumstances bravely.

    The meeting also deliberated upon Musharraf’s return to Pakistan and other party matters.

    Another channel reported that the All-Pakistan Muslim League has started its political activities, and the London meeting was the first political activity of the party, led by the former president, who is expected to visit the US on May 18.

    http://www.dailytimes.com.pk/default.asp?page=2010\05\17\story_17-5-2010_pg7_17

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  29. Gilani answers ticklish queries at NDU
    Thursday, June 17, 2010
    By Muhammad Saleh Zaafir
    Islamabad

    It was a unique encounter between the democratically-elected prime minister and selected officers of the Pakistan armed forces, predominantly belonging to the army, when Syed Yusuf Raza Gilani delivered a lecture on ‘My Vision of Pakistan’ in the auditorium of the National Defence University (NDU) here on Tuesday.

    The officers of the armed forces and other ‘faculties’ were ‘students’ in a defence course and about to return to their respective assignments in a couple of days. The course would help them converting them eligible for promotion to the next cadre.

    The questions were ticklish when the lecture of Prime Minister Syed Yusuf Raza Gilani was over and responses were equally candid and blunt. Corruption, judiciary, looming water and energy crises, regional situation, terrorism and economy were the topics in which most of the questions were asked.

    Gilani was forthcoming in replying queries and encouraged further questioning. He dealt with each and every point with fair amount of acumen and treated the subject in a statesman’s manner.

    http://www.thenews.com.pk/print1.asp?id=245448

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  30. Journalists refuse PML-N offer for dialogue
    By Amjad Mahmood
    Tuesday, 13 Jul, 2010

    LAHORE: The PML-N-led Punjab government did not move on Monday to withdraw the resolution that accused the media of working to undermine the constitutional arrangement in the country and derail democracy as journalists boycotted the house proceedings and refused to join any talks until the document was scrapped from the assembly record.

    http://www.dawn.com/wps/wcm/connect/dawn-content-library/dawn/the-newspaper/local/lahore/no-thaw-in-standoff-journalists-refuse-pmln-offer-for-dialogue-370

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  31. Acting IRSA chief faces the axe
    By GM Jamali/ Hafeez Tunio

    July 13, 2010

    KARACHI: A decision in principle has been taken to remove acting chairman of Irsa Shafqat Mehmood for “creating hatred among provinces” on the sensitive issue of water-sharing. However, the premier will discuss the matter with the President during a scheduled meeting for the appointment of a new chairperson of the authority.

    Sindh Minister Sassui Palijo may also have to face the music for her outburst at a provincial cabinet meeting held on Monday at the CM House with Prime Minister Yousaf Raza Gilani in the chair.
    http://tribune.com.pk/story/27508/acting-irsa-chief-faces-the-axe/

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  32. Political will, unity key to defeating terrorism: PM
    Friday, 16 Jul, 2010

    ISLAMABAD: Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani on Thursday said political will and national unity was the key to defeating extremism and ridding the country of terrorists’ threat.

    Addressing the passing out parade of assistant superintendents of police at the National Police Academy here, Mr Gilani reiterated his government’s resolve to eliminate the forces of extremism and terrorism.

    http://www.dawn.com/wps/wcm/connect/dawn-content-library/dawn/news/pakistan/12-political+will,+unity+key+to+defeating+terrorism+pm–bi-05

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  33. Shahbaz Sharif reviews Punjab law and order
    Monday, 19 Jul, 2010

    LAHORE: Chief Minister Shahbaz Sharif has said the protection of lives and properties of people is the top priority of the government and maximum resources are being utilised for this purpose, says a handout.

    The corrupt and inefficient officers should be removed from the police department, he said while presiding over a meeting on law and order here on Sunday.

    The chief minister said the police stations should be a source of prompt justice and redress of grievances of people. Senior police officers should visit police stations regularly and monitor the efficiency or otherwise of the staff, he said.

    http://www.dawn.com/wps/wcm/connect/dawn-content-library/dawn/the-newspaper/local/lahore/shahbaz-reviews-law-and-order-970

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  34. Gilani for focus on legislation

    ISLAMABAD: Prime Minister Yousaf Raza Gilani on Sunday stressed the need for more focus on legislation to ensure and strengthen good governance in the country.

    Talking to the chief ministers who called on him at his office at the PM House prior to the meeting of the Council of Common Interests (CCI), Gilani said the reconciliatory environment created after the 2008 elections should be allowed to persist as political gamesmanship distracts from focusing on solutions of the problems of the common man.

    http://www.dailytimes.com.pk/default.asp?page=2010\07\19\story_19-7-2010_pg7_19

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  35. PM throws weight behind process
    July 20, 2010

    With the verification of legislators’ degrees entering a decisive stage, Prime Minister Syed Yousaf Raza Gilani has expressed his support for the process and urged the Higher Education Commission (HEC) chairman Dr Javed Leghari to “follow the rules” and not relent to any sort of pressure.

    The HEC chairman called on the prime minister in a much-anticipated and talked-about meeting on Monday at the Prime Minister House, which was held on the request of Leghari, who had written a letter to the prime minister on Friday. Media reports had it that the HEC chairman was being pressurised by the Sindh government to forgo the verification of the degrees of some important political figures, including the president’s sister.
    http://tribune.com.pk/story/29025/pm-throws-weight-behind-process/

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  36. Kayani to serve for 3 more years
    * Gilani praises COAS’ record in war against terror
    * Says continuation of army leadership vital for success in fight

    By Irfan Ghauri

    ISLAMABAD: In a dramatic development, Prime Minister Syed Yousaf Raza Gilani on Thursday announced an extension of three years in the service of Chief of Army Staff General Ashfaq Kayani, who was due to retire on November 29, this year.

    http://www.dailytimes.com.pk/default.asp?page=2010\07\23\story_23-7-2010_pg1_1

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  37. Main parties quiet on Kayani’s extension
    By Amir Waseem
    Friday, 23 Jul, 2010

    ISLAMABAD: The mainstream political parties avoided commenting on Thursday on the government’s decision to grant extension to army chief Gen Ashfaq Parvez Kayani for three years, but most defence analysts termed it “the best decision” in the prevailing circumstances.

    Spokesmen and other leading figures belonging to both the Q and N factions of the Pakistan Muslim League (PML) and the Muttahida Qaumi Movement (MQM) said they would come up with their reactions in a day or two after consulting their leaderships.

    http://www.dawn.com/wps/wcm/connect/dawn-content-library/dawn/the-newspaper/national/main-parties-quiet-on-kayanis-extension-370

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  38. ASIA NEWSJULY 22, 2010
    Pakistan Extends Gen. Kayani’s Term

    By ZAHID HUSSAIN

    ISLAMABAD—Pakistan’s civilian government late Thursday extended the term of army chief General Ashfaq Kayani for three more years to ensure continuity in the military leadership at a crucial stage in the country’s battle against Islamic militants.

    The announcement was made by Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani in a televised speech.

    “The decision is taken to maintain continuity in the military’s command as the country is passing through very critical times,” Mr. Gilani said.

    Gen. Kayani, 58 years old, was appointed army chief in December 2007 and was to retire at the end of the year under normal tenure limitations.

    The general has won praise for leading two successful military operations against Islamic militants last year in Pakistan’s Swat Valley and South Waziristan tribal region.

    http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052748703467304575383603267078276.html?mod=googlenews_wsj

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  39. The way forward for Pakistan

    Friday, July 23, 2010
    By Alam Rind

    The Pakistan-Indian parley ended up in failure owing to inflexible attitude of the Indian delegation. For them, terrorist attacks in Mumbai and the actions taken thereafter were of prime importance, whereas, for Pakistan Kashmir constitutes the core issue. In addition to such divergence of views, the seeds of failure were sown by the statement of Indian Home Secretary G. K. Pillal implicating ISI in the Mumbai terrorist attacks.

    What it implies is that the government of Pakistan is sponsoring terrorism or ISI is out of the control of the government. Such baseless allegations are always very hard to swallow. In fact, the dialogue process initiated under American pressure stood subverted before it started. Shah Mehmood Qureshiís outrage reflected naivety of his expectations. He probably had missed the deceit veiled in otherwise courteous diplomatic conversations.

    We need to understand that Pakistan is under tremendous pressure on three accounts. The first and the most grunion is maladministration and linked economic crisis. We have no one to blame for shortage of electricity, water, rampant corruption, mutilation of merit etc. The net effect is that the structure of essential services has started collapsing. Railway has cut down train services, hospitals are with out medicine and doctors, crimes are on the increase, police is inefficient and indifferent, judicial system is shady and choked, education system nonfunctional, media is spreading hopelessness, inflation is rampant and under this burden people are in hapless state. In the absence of ìdirectionî and ìhopeî people are bemused and an ideal situation is created to breed terrorist and criminal groups.
    http://www.thenews.com.pk/daily_detail.asp?id=252418

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  40. EC readies policy over fake degrees
    By Iftikhar A. Khan
    Thursday, 22 Jul, 2010

    ISLAMABAD: The Election Commission has formulated a roadmap to swiftly move ahead after the Higher Education Commission (HEC) submits its final report on the issue of educational qualifications of lawmakers, according to sources.

    “The commission has given final touches to a policy that will ensure that action against fake degree holders has no legal lacuna,” a source told Dawn on Thursday.

    He said the commission was likely to nominate on Friday (today) a joint secretary who would supervise the process in line with the orders of Supreme Court. “The official selected will either be Sher Afgan, the joint secretary (election), or Mohammad Afzal Khan, the joint secretary (budget),” he said.

    http://www.dawn.com/wps/wcm/connect/dawn-content-library/dawn/the-newspaper/national/ec-readies-policy-over-fake-degrees-370

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  41. Zardari proposes withdrawal of troops from Siachen
    Friday, 23 Jul, 2010

    KARACHI: President Asif Ali Zardari on Friday proposed that Pakistan and India withdraw forces from Siachen glacier region. The president also said that India’s delegation is doing more politics than talks.

    Speaking to journalists at Chief Minister House Sindh, the president said that Indian army’s expenditure at Siachen region is more than Pakistan’s. Still, Pakistan has suggested to India that both countries withdraw their forces from the region.

    http://www.dawn.com/wps/wcm/connect/dawn-content-library/dawn/news/pakistan/44-president-zardari-proposes-withdrawal-of-troops-from-siachen-fa-06

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  42. A General Stays On, Solidifying the Army’s Power in Pakistan
    By Omar Waraich / Islamabad Friday, Jul. 23, 2010

    The speech may have lasted just three minutes, but it spoke volumes about where power lies in Pakistan. Late on Thursday, Prime Minister Yousaf Raza Gilani suddenly appeared on national television to address the country. Pakistan is passing through a critical phase, he said, reading intently from a script on his desk and stealing only furtive glances at the camera in front of him. He praised the Pakistani army for its successes in military operations against Islamist militants and singled out its commander, General Ashfaq Parvez Kayani, for his “excellent military leadership qualities and pro-democracy views.” For those reasons, Gilani said, despite the fact that Kayani’s term in command of the army was about to expire, Pakistan’s civilian government had decided to keep him on for another three years.

    http://www.time.com/time/world/article/0,8599,2006175,00.html

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  43. PM for early completion of Iranian power import project

    ISLAMABAD: PM Yousaf Raza Gilani on Friday said the govt would pursue an early finalisation of the feasibility study regarding the import of 1,000 megawatts of electricity from Iran. The PM said this while talking to Pakistan’s Ambassador to Iran MB Abbasi, who called on him at the PM’s Secretariat. During the meeting, Gilani said he would supervise expeditious implementation of projects like the refurbishment of railway track from Quetta to Taftan and the construction of Dalbandin-Noshki road with the assistance of govt of Iran. He hoped that during the forthcoming visit of the Iranian foreign minister for the next session of the ministerial commission, both sides would take an account of bilateral relations and find new avenues of cooperation in their multi-dimensional relationship. The PM asked the ambassador to take initiatives for improving logistic facilities for Pakistani pilgrims, so that they could easily travel to sacred places in Iran.

    http://www.dailytimes.com.pk/default.asp?page=2010\07\24\story_24-7-2010_pg7_30

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  44. HEC to forward degrees to education minster
    Friday, 23 Jul, 2010

    ISLAMABAD: Higher Education Commission (HEC) would forward the verification of fake degrees to the Minister of Education Sardar Asif Ali as directed by the Prime Minister, the controlling authority of the Commission.

    Dr Sohail Naqvi Executive Director HEC told a private news channel that they have asked Education Minster to forward verifications of fake degrees to standing committee of education.

    http://www.dawn.com/wps/wcm/connect/dawn-content-library/dawn/news/pakistan/06-hec-to-forward-degrees-verification-to-education-minster-03

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  45. Tenure in army chief extension aimed to keep up terror war: Kaira

    ISLAMABAD (SANA): Minister for Information and Broadcasting Qamar Zaman Kaira has said that the decision to grant extension in service of the incumbent Army Chief was aimed at ensuring continuity of policy in the war against terror.

    Talking to media in London he said we are in a state of war and no country can afford changing the military command in such a situation.

    http://www.sananews.net/english/2010/07/24/tenure-in-army-chief-extension-aimed-to-keep-up-terror-war-kaira/

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  46. No-confidence motion filed against AJK PM

    MUZAFFARABAD/MIRPUR: Opposition parties in the Azad Jammu and Kashmir (AJK) Legislative Assembly moved a no-confidence motion against AJK Prime Minister Raja Farooq Haider Khan on Friday.

    AJK Legislative Assembly Secretary Aashiq Hussain told APP that opposition members, including Chaudhry Muhammad Aziz and Abdul Majid Khan, filed the motion in the assembly Secretariat, which had the signatures of 11 members, including the legislators of the Pakistan People’s Party (PPP). The opposition has nominated former AJK PM and head of the ruling party, Sardar Attique Ahmed Khan, as the new leader of the House. Separately, 12 AJK ministers submitted their resignations to Attique, a party spokesman told APP. It is pertinent to mention here that this would be the third no-confidence motion in the three-month tenure of the assembly and was expected to bring a fourth PM in four years.

    http://www.dailytimes.com.pk/default.asp?page=2010\07\24\story_24-7-2010_pg7_7

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  47. ‘Quartet’ secure till 2013, says Gilani
    By Ahmad Hassan
    Saturday, 24 Jul, 2010

    ISLAMABAD: Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani said on Friday that the extension given to Gen Ashfaq Parvez Kayani’s term as Chief of the Army Staff had secured the position of all ‘major stakeholders’ of the system — the president, prime minister, Supreme Court chief justice and army chief — till 2013.

    Talking to journalists after a visit to the Pakistan Sweet Home project in Sihala, Mr Gilani said it was now incumbent upon all institutions to work within the ambit of the Constitution.

    “I want to give a message to the nation that at this time, the prime minister, president, CJP and COAS are now in a secure position till 2013. They must now work within the ambit of Constitution,” he said.
    http://www.dawn.com/wps/wcm/connect/dawn-content-library/dawn/news/pakistan/04-govt-kayani-extension-qs-07

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  48. Gilani directs Malik to visit Karachi
    Gilani directs Malik to visit Karachi LAHORE, Prime Minister Syed Yousuf Raza Gilani on Saturday directed Federal Interior Minister Rehman Malik to urgently visit Karachi following the tensed situation in metropolis, a private TV channel reported.

    Talking to media after visiting ailing PML-N leader Makhdoom Javed Hashmi at General Hospital Lahore, Prime Minister said all steps would be taken in the interests of people.

    Replying a query, Gilani said that the extension in the tenure of the Army Chief is an administrative decision and it would not be seen in political shade.

    http://www.pakwatan.com/gov_detail.php?id=2370

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  49. Gilani says he tried to contact Nawaz before extension
    By Zulqernain Tahir
    Monday, 26 Jul, 2010

    LAHORE: Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani said on Sunday that granting extension to the army chief was an administrative decision which did not require consultation with political parties.

    “However I called Mr Nawaz Sharif two hours before my address to the nation but his son told me that he was travelling,” Mr Gilani said.

    Talking to journalists at his Defence residence here on Sunday, the prime minister said this matter should not be politicised.

    Dispelling a perception that the decision to grant extension to General Ashfaq Parvez Kayani would help the PPP government to complete its five-year term, he said he drew his strength from parliament and there had never been a ‘threat’ to the government from any quarter.

    http://www.dawn.com/wps/wcm/connect/dawn-content-library/dawn/the-newspaper/front-page/gilani-says-he-tried-to-contact-nawaz-before-extension-speech-670

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  50. Political wrangling continues in AJK
    By Amir Wasim
    Monday, 26 Jul, 2010

    ISLAMABAD: A political crisis in Azad Jammu and Kashmir continues and just 30 hours before the vote on a no-confidence motion against Prime Minister Raja Farooq Haider takes place, a faction of the ruling Muslim Conference which has moved the motion claimed that 18 of 24 cabinet members had resigned and deserted the premier. However, AJK Assembly Speaker Shah Ghulam Qadir, who is supporting the prime minister, told Dawn that he had not received any resignation.

    The no-confidence motion was submitted by 11 members on Friday and the speaker called a session of the AJK Legislative Assembly on Tuesday morning for a vote.

    It will be the third time the assembly will vote on a no-confidence motion since its election in 2006. If the move succeeds, the people of Azad Kashmir will have their fourth prime minister in as many years.

    http://www.dawn.com/wps/wcm/connect/dawn-content-library/dawn/the-newspaper/front-page/16-political-wrangling-continues-in-ajk-670-hs-07

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  51. US officials’ visits on Senate agenda today
    By Ahmad Hassan
    Monday, 26 Jul, 2010

    ISLAMABAD: The 63rd session of the Senate beginning at 4pm on Monday is likely to witness heated debates on US officials’ recent visits to Pakistan, a three-year extension given to Gen Ashfaq Parvez Kayani as Chief of the Army Staff, the law and order situation in Karachi and Balochistan and the Afghan-Pakistan Transit Trade Agreement.

    According to the Parliament House sources, the pre-Ramazan session will be basically for 10 days as per provisional parliamentary calendar but it could be extended if needed.

    Monday will be a private members’ day. PML (Likeminded) president Senator Salim Saifullah Khan will introduce a bill seeking repeal of clause 2 of Article 248 of the Constitution which provides the president immunity from a court trial.

    The anti-government bill is most likely to be defeated, but the mover’s intention is to present his party’s view on a delay in reopening of a number of corruption cases against President Asif Ali Zardari.

    http://www.dawn.com/wps/wcm/connect/dawn-content-library/dawn/the-newspaper/national/us-officials-visits-on-senate-agenda-670

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  52. Gilani promises gift of democracy to tribal areas
    LAHORE: Prime Minister Yousaf Raza Gilani put the insurgency-hit tribal agencies on notice Sunday that a democracy plan will be crafted for them once the military operation there draws to a close.
    Without elaborating, the prime minister said, the move should be considered as a gift to the people of the tribal agencies. Speaking to reporters at the Prime Minister House, Gilani said that through people-friendly measures his ruling Pakistan Peoples Party was exhibiting its penchant for “going forward and taking all parties and institutions along with it.”
    http://tribune.com.pk/story/31109/gilani-promises-gift-of-democracy-to-tribal-areas/

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  53. Experts blast education minister for interfering in HEC

    Monday, July 26, 2010
    By By Tariq Butt
    ISLAMABAD: Legal experts say neither the Federal Education Ministry nor its minister finds any mention in the 3,112-word Higher Education Commission (HEC) Ordinance 2002, and no role has been provided in its affairs in any context.

    They say if the Education Ministry had any relevance under the HEC ordinance or any other law for verification of degrees, the Supreme Court would have referred to it in its last month’s judgment in the Rizwan Gull case in which the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) was directed to check the MPs’ certificates and prosecute the cheats.

    Prominent constitutional expert Justice (R) Tariq Mehmood told The News that the HEC’s role was different from that of the Education Ministry.Tariq Mehmood said that the HEC report on degrees would be acceptable in any court of law while the ministry’s findings would have no weight.

    “Primarily, it is the job of the HEC to verify degrees and the Education Ministry or education minister does not figure anywhere,” he added.Another expert referred to a case currently before the Supreme Court relating to the degrees of two MPs of Balochistan in which it has sent their certificates to the HEC, not the Education Ministry, for verification.

    http://www.thenews.com.pk/print1.asp?id=252919

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  54. Govt comes up with tougher anti-terror law
    By Raja Asghar
    Wednesday, 28 Jul, 2010
    ISLAMABAD: The government brought a tougher anti-terror law to parliament on Tuesday in an urgent response to a new wave of violence in the country, with Interior Minister Rehman Malik showing both an iron fist and an olive branch to Baloch insurgents.

    The minister, who introduced the Anti-terrorism (Amendment) Bill — based largely on a lapsed presidential ordinance — in the Senate, wanted the upper house to pass it immediately so the government could use its stringent provisions he called “voice of the people of Pakistan” at the earliest, but later agreed to give a house standing committee up to August 2 to study the draft and come up with its report.

    The opposition and some government allies had sought time to study the implications of 25 amendments proposed in the Anti-terrorism Act of 1997 and compare them with the original document, before the leader of the house Nayyar Hussain Bokhari came with a compromise date of August 2, although Deputy Chairman Jan Mohammad Jamali, who was chairing the proceedings, had at one point agreed to set an earlier deadline of Friday while proposing that the concerned standing committee also consult some prominent legal figures of different parties in the house.
    http://www.dawn.com/wps/wcm/connect/dawn-content-library/dawn/news/pakistan/04-anti-terror-bill-senate-qs-04

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  55. Raja Farooq to challenge new PM’s election
    By Amir Wasim
    Wednesday, 28 Jul, 2010

    ISLAMABAD: Azad Kashmir Prime Minister Raja Farooq Haider announced on Tuesday that he would challenge in the AJK High Court on Wednesday the process of election of his successor after his resignation.

    Mr Haider had resigned on Monday to avoid a no-confidence vote in the Legislative Assembly.

    Addressing a news conference here, he alleged that AJK President Raja Zulqarnain had acted “unconstitutionally” in calling a session of the assembly on Thursday, ignoring his advice to summon it on Aug 6. He said he would continue to act as the prime minister during the period.
    http://www.dawn.com/wps/wcm/connect/dawn-content-library/dawn/the-newspaper/front-page/farooq-to-challenge-new-pms-election-870

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  56. Kabir Wasti asks Kayani to justify his extension

    Wednesday, July 28, 2010
    RAWALPINDI: Prominent Pakistan Muslim League leader Syed Kabir Ali Wasti has asked Army Chief General Ashfaq Parvez Kayani to justify his extension by taking action in the interest of the Pakistani nation and not just the Americans or the ruling PPP.

    In a statement released to the press he said the extension was a good thing but the army chief has to show that Pakistani people and the nation also benefit from it.

    He said in view of the increasing chaos in the country, the widespread corruption, the refusal of the government to accept Supreme Court judgments, the scandals of rental power, LNG, Pakistan Steel, PIA and many others, the army must play its role now that General Kayani has secured three more years.

    Kabir Wasti said it was absolutely wrong to say that the army had no role in politics. It always had and will always have, so I ask the Army not to remain a silent spectator when the country is going to dogs,” the PML leader said.

    He said if General Kayani only serves the US interests and the corrupt politicians, the nation will be thoroughly disappointed with the army and this will be disastrous for the integrity and solidarity of the country. “The extension is good but the nation should also benefit from it and the courts must be strongly supported to carry out a rigid and across the board accountability,” he said.

    http://www.thenews.com.pk/daily_detail.asp?id=253425

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  57. Plan to purge NAB of ‘anti-govt’ officials
    By Syed Irfan Raza
    Wednesday, 28 Jul, 2010

    ISLAMABAD: The current management of the National Accountability Bureau (NAB) has started implementing its plan to ‘cleanse’ the bureau and have claimed their first victim — director administration Saleem Shahzad.

    He has been forced to relinquish the charge of his office in the NAB headquarters and has been asked to report to NAB Peshawar.

    Though he is still to report to the new office, he has stopped attending office at the headquarters.

    Other officials who dealing with the cases of politicians and bureaucrats, which were reopened after the Supreme Court scrapped the National Reconciliation Ordinance (NRO), are also getting ready to move to their new port of destination, Dawn has learnt.

    http://www.dawn.com/wps/wcm/connect/dawn-content-library/dawn/the-newspaper/front-page/plan-to-purge-nab-of-antigovt-officials-870

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  58. Sardar Attique elected new AJK PM
    Thursday, 29 Jul, 2010

    MUZAFFARABAD: Lawmakers in Pakistani-administered Kashmir on Thursday elected a new leader, days after their outgoing premier resigned ahead of a no-confidence vote, officials said.

    Sardar Attique Ahmad was endorsed as prime minister with the votes of 39 members of the 49-strong local legislative assembly. Ten members abstained.

    “Sardar Attique is elected leader of the house after securing 39 votes with none against,” deputy speaker Mehrunnisa said.

    A former premier, Attique was removed from office in January 2009 in a no-confidence vote amid allegations of corruption and nepotism.

    http://www.dawn.com/wps/wcm/connect/dawn-content-library/dawn/news/pakistan/04-sardar-attique-new-ajk-pm-qs-06

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  59. Public Opinion in Pakistan: Concern About Extremist Threat Slips
    America’s Image Remains Poor

    Overview

    Pakistanis remain in a grim mood about the state of their country. Overwhelming majorities are dissatisfied with national conditions, unhappy with the nation’s economy, and concerned about political corruption and crime. Only one-in-five express a positive view of President Asif Ali Zardari, down from 64% just two years ago.

    http://pewresearch.org/pubs/1683/pakistan-opinion-less-concern-extremists-america-image-poor-india-threat-support-harsh-laws

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  60. My editorial for RTI Pakistan…

    Editorial–Friday 30 July, 2010

    Will Zardari and Gilani be holding a prayer meeting this weekend?

    It’s been an eventful week for Pakistani citizens. God must be real angry with us or maybe we deserve the series of bizarre misfortunes because of our apathy for putting up with so much and still keeping our heads down? I don’t know. We all seem comfortably numb.

    Only this week, Pakistan has gone through the following list of events for example:

    * WikiLeaks releases classified US documents that allegedly implicate Pakistan in supporting Afghan Taliban, the world and its media turns against Pakistan
    * HEC, fake degrees saga continues! (No wonder we are having so many problems with our leaders not even literate enough to read the fine print. Just fire them already and move on!)
    * Judges still hung over system of appointments
    * AJK elects new leadership
    * Kayani’s term is extended and this is apparently a cause of concern for all concerned citizens and media
    * Prices hike before advent of Ramadan – Sugar, Electricity and CNG; all within this week
    * Plane crashes in Margalla Hills – 152 people die
    * Rains, floods, loss of lives and property in KP and Balochistan continues – 400,000 people affected, death toll rising daily
    * Target Killings escalate

    Every second news about Pakistan reports death, destruction, death, destruction and ineffectual behavior of our government in coping with the new crisis. Only God help us but even God seems to have stopped caring for the land of the pure.

    I heard on the eight o’clock news day before yesterday that the religious scholars (Ulema) have asked the citizens to step up their prayers because only God can help in these circumstances. Since we can’t do much about unfolding events – Let us pray! Will the government hold a prayer meeting this weekend?

    http://www.rtipakistan.com/site/assets/Col%20and%20blogs/editordesk.php

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  61. My editorial for RTI Pakistan – July 31st 2010 –

    KP: the ravaged province
    Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa (KP) has been in jeopardy since forever. A few generations of Pakistanis have grown up in the last thirty years in the meantime.
    What with the Afghan conflict on its borders since 1979 and the Afghan refugee situation, the new fall-out of the conflict resulting from US-NATO invasion since 2001, target killings, bombings and terrorist activities in our home ground, earthquake 2005, Pak Army’s action to push right back the Afghan natives to their point of origin who were taking refuge in KP and planning their so-called resistance to NATO forces, which resulted in loads of IDPs only last year, and now the latest calamity – floods, the citizens are probably wondering whatever did they ever do to deserve all this. When calamity happens, we always ask God, “Why me?”
    Over 400, 000 citizens have been affected. Death Toll seems to be rising hourly as many people are unaccounted for and might turn up dead when the dust settles. Tourists are stuck in the north. Things seem pretty bad and are getting worse rapidly. As usual, the government was caught off-guard.
    Funnily enough, with climate change debate heating up in the world, they should have known they would be one of the worst hit countries of the world from now on, especially now, when the developed world refuses to take action to cap its carbon emissions or take effective measures to halt its relentless tide – innocent lives will be lost every year now because governments of the world refuse to do the right thing.
    Extremes of weather, rain, floods and droughts, storms (cyclones, hurricanes and typhoons) will be the norm going forward in Pakistan. Monsoon is a yearly phenomenon in Pakistan and this year our Met office warned all stakeholders back in April (or was it May?) that it would hit Pakistan early and in force which it did.
    KPs economy is in shambles – tourism, industry, manufacturing and agriculture. This latest calamity is probably the last straw. I was watching images (on my TV screen) of protestors angrily shouting for the government to do something last night! ‘Rescue operations are fairly inadequate and disaster relief management is not in place.
    The latest series of troubles are not over – after Balochistan and KP, now, it’s apparently Sindh’s turn – the flood waters are heading in that direction to wreck some more havoc.
    The government will need to heavily invest in disaster relief management going forward because our climate is indeed changing and each year, it will bring a new installment of disaster one way or another. It’s a fact that the whole world is suffering its impact but we unfortunately are again the front line state in our fight against nature. We better get prepared.

    http://www.rtipakistan.com/site/assets/Col%20and%20blogs/KP.php

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  62. Hazara province – will they get it?
    Political analysts in and out of Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa are confident that Hazara’s dream of a separate province is just that, a dream but determined Hazarewals are committed to seeing their dream realised. With such polarised views, how does one ascertain the viability of a separate province?
    The present unrest in Hazara is the product of a complex and long-standing cocktail of administrative, political, social, ethnic and linguistic issues. And it is unlikely to disappear anytime soon. “This is not a small issue which can be solved by merely issuing statements,” says Sardar Hyder Zaman Baba, a Hazara leader.

    http://tribune.com.pk/story/33036/hazara-province-%E2%80%93-will-they-get-it/

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  63. Point of rupture
    BY NADEEM F. PARACHA ON 07 30TH, 2010 | COMMENTS (72)
    If one is to pick a year from where Pakistan’s political and cultural slide towards a curious faith-based neurosis (and ultimately a socio-political nervous breakdown) began, that year is bound to be 1979.

    The lead up to this decisive year was 1977’s military coup against the Zulfikar Ali Bhutto government by his own handpicked General (Zia-ul-Haq).

    http://blog.dawn.com/2010/07/30/point-of-rupture/

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  64. ISI chief Lt Gen Shuja Pasha calls off London visit
    By Baqir Sajjad Syed
    Saturday, 31 Jul, 2010

    SLAMABAD: Revealing the division within its ranks, the government struggled all day on Friday to come up with a unified response to British Prime Minister David Cameron’s disparaging terror remarks.

    For once the PPP leaders were not just at odds with the military leadership, but also the Foreign Office, led by their party man. The army conveyed its displeasure after the ISI chief cancelled his upcoming visit to UK. After hectic day-long consultations, sources said the final decision was on these lines – President Zardari will go ahead with his visit to UK; ISI chief to call off the trip; and the Foreign Office, which is torn between the political and military cross-currents, to summon a British High Commission official. British Prime Minister Cameron’s remarks in India earlier in the week accusing Pakistan of exporting terror created uproar here with demands for a strong response to the statement.

    http://www.dawn.com/wps/wcm/connect/dawn-content-library/dawn/the-newspaper/front-page/19-isi-chief-calls-off-london-visit-170-hh-01

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  65. Most fiscal targets may be missed, says State Bank
    By Shahid Iqbal
    Saturday, 31 Jul, 2010

    KARACHI: The State Bank increased its policy interest rate by 50 basis points to 13 per cent on Friday on the assumption that most of the government’s fiscal targets would not be achieved and its dependence on borrowing would continue during the current financial year and cause inflation and monetary expansion.

    http://www.dawn.com/wps/wcm/connect/dawn-content-library/dawn/the-newspaper/front-page/19-most-fiscal-targets-may-be-missed,-says-state-bank-170-hh-03

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  66. Judicial system needs overhauling: Babar Awan
    Friday, 30 Jul, 2010

    LAHORE: Federal Minister for Parliamentary Affairs, Law and Justice Babar Awan has said the judicial system of Pakistan needs an overhauling.

    Addressing the office bearers of Bar Associations of Faisalabad and Sargodha divisions at Governor’s House on Friday, he said that it was need of the hour to review the institutions in line with the increase in population of the country as the existing system had been made when the population was about forty million.

    http://www.dawn.com/wps/wcm/connect/dawn-content-library/dawn/news/pakistan/06-judicial-system-needs-overhauling-babar-awan-rs-07

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  67. Zardari in Paris on three-day visit
    Monday, 02 Aug, 2010

    PARIS: President Asif Ali Zardari will hold talks on Monday (today) with his French counterpart Nicholas Sarkozy on bilateral relations, defence cooperation and Pakistan’s role as a front-line state in war against terrorism.

    During his three-day visit to France that began on Sunday, President Zardari will also meet Foreign Minister Bernard Kouchner.

    During Mr Zardari’s visit here in May last year, France announced a 12-million-euro aid for people displaced by fighting in Swat valley.

    And at a donors’ conference in Tokyo on April 17, 2009, Paris pledged an assistance package of 300 million euros spread over three years.

    Meanwhile, a statement issued by the French foreign ministry here on Sunday said: “(President Zardari’s) visit will provide an opportunity to address the issues relating to security and the fight against terrorism, the regional situation, as well as our economic cooperation.”

    http://www.dawn.com/wps/wcm/connect/dawn-content-library/dawn/the-newspaper/front-page/zardari-in-paris-on-threeday-visit-280

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  68. Zardari, Nawaz lack self-respect: Imran
    Monday, 02 Aug, 2010

    KASUR: Pakistan Tehrik-i-Insaaf chief Imran Khan has termed the remarks passed by British Prime Minister David Cameron insulting, saying it is not for the first time that such derogatory comments have been ignored.

    Imran Khan said this while talking to party leaders and the media people at a local hotel on Shahbaz Road here on Sunday.

    “Our rulers should have promptly reciprocated, but they lack self-respect and leadership qualities. Under these circumstances, President Asif Ali Zardari’s insistence on touring the UK has bewildered every loyal Pakistani”, he said.

    Mr Khan said Nawaz Sharif had kept a mum on the issue as he, like other politicians, had assets in billions in the UK and other European countries and he had no courage to take any risk.

    http://www.dawn.com/wps/wcm/connect/dawn-content-library/dawn/the-newspaper/national/camerons-remarks-zardari,-nawaz-lack-selfrespect-imran-280

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  69. My editorial for RTI Pakistan – August 2nd 2010

    Where does all the money go? Is there a light at the end of the tunnel?

    Lahore – Things are tough for Pak citizens – is there any doubt? Would any other nation want to walk in our shoes right now? Probably not.
    We are surrounded by incompetent leaders who were not even smart enough to pass their Bachelor’s exam without cheating so they went a step further and committed fraud to circumvent a law of the land. What a great role model for future generations!
    We are surrounded by leaders who don’t pay taxes and have no plans of ever paying taxes in this country. They make laws that shift burden of taxes on the poor and the middle classes. Yes, I am talking about GST and other indirect taxes that hit us in wallet every year but not them. The elected elite that run this country are all hi-tech farmers, (read: feudal lords that own big agricultural estates), real estate tycoons (they own mansions, palaces, shops and big country estates here and abroad), and industrialists and financiers (they own industries and banks). Why would they make laws to tax themselves? So VAT or GST or whatever new fancy name they come up with will remain a joke in this country. Poor IMF – they don’t understand that in a corrupt country like ours, it’s quite easy to cook the books – so where does that leave GST? The consumers might end up paying GST but producers, retailers, service providers and business owners don’t have to declare their income or numbers if they don’t want to…
    We are surrounded by leaders who are insensitive enough to go on foreign tours so they can meet visit family and party workers on government expense while Pak citizens are drowning and crying for help, not to mention, when one of the hosts they plan to visit have insulted them sufficiently by calling them ‘exporters of terror’ – strangely enough, not a single citizen of Pakistan has been caught ‘master-minding’ any terrorist activity anywhere. (Ajmal Kasab or Faisal Shahzad don’t count – they were just foot soldiers). May be I shouldn’t have said this? Now, some local master-minders (other than so-called ISI) will be manufactured and will start crawling out from the woodwork?!
    We are surrounded by leaders who are so busy looting the country that they don’t even realize the realities on ground – Pakistan is surrounded by hostile neighbors, economy is in shambles and people are committing suicide daily. The only organized government institution in this country is unfortunately the Army which is being pulled in all directions – to defend the borders, to contain the terrorists, and even fly to the rescue of the drowning folk while the world vilifies our only ‘working’ government institution to death. The rest of the institutions are too busy playing the proverbial fiddle while Rome burns.

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  70. Pakistan president faces criticism over UK visit
    The President of Pakistan arrives in Britain on Tuesday facing accusations that he is using a meeting with David Cameron as a smokescreen for an attempt to shore up his political dynasty.

    By Duncan Gardham, John Bingham and Gordon Rayner
    Published: 10:51PM BST 02 Aug 2010

    Asif Ali Zardari faces criticism in Pakistan for pressing on with the six-day visit at a time when his country is struggling to cope with its worst floods for 80 years.
    His decision not to fly home has led to suggestions that his real motive is not Friday’s meeting with Mr Cameron, but a rally in Birmingham the following day at which he will help launch his son’s campaign to succeed him.

    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldnews/asia/pakistan/7923382/Pakistan-president-faces-criticism-over-UK-visit.html

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  71. Crises in disaster management
    By Mahir Ali
    Wednesday, 04 Aug, 2010

    It’s somewhat odd that whereas there were any number of voices calling for President Asif Zardari to cancel his state visit to Britain on account of remarks made by Prime Minister David Cameron in Bangalore, hardly anyone bothered to suggest that perhaps his jaunt to Paris and London ought to be put off on account of one of Pakistan’s worst natural disasters in living memory.

    Perhaps that’s because no one in their wildest dreams could imagine that his presence in the country would in any way be particularly conducive to rescue and relief efforts. Which is fair enough. It is not, however, uncommon in such circumstances for heads of state or government to at least make symbolic gestures of solidarity with their nation’s beleaguered populace, and putting off a trip to Europe doesn’t seem like a particularly stupendous sacrifice.
    It is more than likely that misplaced priorities have played a part in the sharp dip in Zardari’s popularity in the Pew Research Centre poll released last week, which showed 76 per cent of those polled expressing an unfavourable view of the president, up from 65 per cent last year and just 24 per cent in 2008. That’s quite an achievement. It could perhaps be remedied somewhat by a duel with Cameron on the lawns of Chequers. But, more seriously, the figures would undoubtedly have improved had Pakistanis seen him at least attempting to console some of the flood-stricken unfortunates in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa.

    http://www.dawn.com/wps/wcm/connect/dawn-content-library/dawn/the-newspaper/columnists/21-mahir-ali-multiple-crises-in-disaster-management-480-sk-01

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  72. Punjab govt’s ‘point scoring’ troubles Gilani
    By Khaleeq Kiani
    Wednesday, 04 Aug, 2010

    ISLAMABAD: Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani is clearly worried. Not just because of the floods, which have displaced hundreds of thousands of people, but also because the federal government’s efforts for providing relief to the affected people are not registering with the populace because of the habit on the part of the political leadership of Punjab of point scoring.

    He expressed these fears on Tuesday as his efforts to reach out to the affected people ended even before they began.

    Tuesday morning began badly when the prime minister had to cancel a visit to Swat and Malakand because of poor weather conditions.

    http://www.dawn.com/wps/wcm/connect/dawn-content-library/dawn/the-newspaper/front-page/19-punjab-govts-point-scoring-troubles-gilani-480-hh-12

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  73. Comment: Out of sync
    Wednesday, August 04, 2010
    Fakir S Ayazuddin

    The statement of the British prime minister against the ISI, and that too delivered to an audience in India, has been taken as a calculated insult to a very important pillar of our intelligence organisation. The insult was contrived to attack the choice whipping boy of the western allies, the ISI of the Pakistan Army. The isolation of Pakistan, and that of the Pakistan Army in particular, is now being ratcheted up a notch while the anti-Islam lobby has gone into overdrive.

    The presidency is the symbol of unity of the federation of Pakistan. It demands everyone’s respect, including the occupant’s. It seems that the pliability of our PPP leadership vis-a-vis the US, as negotiated under the NRO deal, has been extended to the government of the day. It appears that the presidency is out of sync with the Foreign Office and the Defence Ministry, otherwise, the DG ISI would never act on his own. The presidency cannot decide on its own, and it is highly unlikely that the prime minister would have given his consent to the unilateral cancellation of Gen Pasha’s visit to the UK.

    http://www.thenews.com.pk/daily_detail.asp?id=254669

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  74. Nawaz criticises Zardari over UK visit
    Wednesday, 04 Aug, 2010

    CHARSADDA: Pakistan’s main opposition leader on Wednesday piled pressure on President Asif Ali Zardari to cut short a foreign tour and deal with the aftermath of the worst floods in living memory.

    Nawaz Sharif, head of Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz, spoke to reporters in Charsadda, one of the northwest areas worst hit by devastating floods that have affected 3.2 million people and killed an estimated 1,500.

    “We have been let down very badly by Mr Zardari. We have been let down more by him than the statement by David Cameron,” Sharif told reporters.

    http://www.dawn.com/wps/wcm/connect/dawn-content-library/dawn/news/pakistan/04-nawaz-uk-zardari-criticism-qs-02

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  75. Pakistan Engulfed:
    A humanitarian disaster at home, a diplomatic crisis abroad

    Pakistan’s President Asif Ali Zardari flies into Britain today facing problems on two fronts, reports Omar Waraich

    Pakistan’s president Asif Ali Zardari arrives in London today as his nation grapples with the impact of the worst floods in 80 years – and against the backdrop of a bitter row over terrorism with his host David Cameron.

    The Prime Minister’s remarks in India last week, accusing Pakistan of exporting terror and of “looking both ways” on Islamist militancy, have sparked a furore that has yet to fade.

    Even as Pakistan struggled to contain a humanitarian disaster affecting 2.5 million people, its foreign minister summoned Britain’s envoy to Pakistan to deliver an official rebuff to Mr Cameron’s allegations.

    http://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/asia/a-humanitarian-disaster-at-home-a-diplomatic-crisis-abroad-2041671.html

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  76. Pakistan president under attack over Europe trip

    By Katherine Haddon (AFP) – 13 hours ago

    LONDON — Pakistani President Asif Ali Zardari was in Britain Wednesday amid a row over terrorism, and rising criticism over his failure to return home in the aftermath of the worst floods in living memory.

    Zardari, who arrived in Britain Tuesday, will hold talks with British Prime Minister David Cameron Friday and explain “face to face” Islamabad’s anger over Cameron’s claim last week that Pakistan promoted the “export of terror”.

    But Zardari is now under growing pressure to go back to Pakistan and lead the country’s response to devastating floods in northwest and central Pakistan which have killed up to 1,500 people affected over three million.

    Pakistan is holding an emergency cabinet meeting Wednesday in a bid to speed up relief work following the devastating floods which washed away villages and ruined farmland in one of its poorest and volatile regions.

    http://www.google.com/hostednews/afp/article/ALeqM5hWLGFX29cwM9JF3i-6nGfQjHxfKA

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  77. Fake degree saga continues…

    Polling begins for three NA seats
    Thursday, 05 Aug, 2010

    LAHORE: By-polls are being held in NA-68 Sargodha-V, NA-100 Gujranwala-VIII and NA-155 Lodhran-II today.

    PML-N and PPP candidates vacated National Assembly seats in Sargodha and Lodhran, respectively over fake degrees.

    In Gujranwala, an independent MNA who later joined PML-N also vacated the seat over the degree issue.

    http://www.dawn.com/wps/wcm/connect/dawn-content-library/dawn/news/pakistan/12-by-polls+for+three+na+seats+today–bi-01

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  78. Old system of judges’ appointment failed
    By Our Staff Reporter
    Thursday, 05 Aug, 2010

    ISLAMABAD: The chequered history of Pakistani judiciary — littered with instances of division in the top judicial organ, stuffing of courts with judges of questionable credentials and arbitrary sacking of justices — was recalled before the Supreme Court hearing challenges to the Constitution’s 18th Amendment to establish that the previous mode of appointment of superior court judges was faulty.

    “The old system of appointment of superior court judges had failed to deliver and, therefore, lacked public confidence,” Advocate Ibrahim Satti, representing the federal government, argued before the 17-judge full court hearing a number of challenges to the 18th Amendment.

    http://www.dawn.com/wps/wcm/connect/dawn-content-library/dawn/the-newspaper/front-page/19-old-system-of-judges-appointment-failed,-says-govt-counsel-580-hh-05

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  79. Asif Ali Zardari is fiddling while Pakistan drowns
    The beleaguered country has a president more concerned with politics than his people, says Con Coughlin.

    Published: 7:37PM BST 04 Aug 2010

    Pakistan has had to endure more than its fair share of disasters, but even by its harsh standards, the floods that have driven millions of people from their homes, and killed at least 1,700, qualify as a tragedy.
    In such circumstances, you might expect Asif Ali Zardari, the country’s president, to abandon his European tour and return home at the earliest opportunity to assume personal control of the relief operation – such as it is. The military’s failure to organise the evacuation has left entire communities stranded, while the authorities’ wider inability to deal with the floods’ aftermath has led to outbreaks of cholera in the Swat valley.

    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/comment/columnists/concoughlin/7927151/Asif-Ali-Zardari-is-fiddling-while-Pakistan-drowns.html

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  80. Zardari’s trip to Europe fuels resentment as Pakistan reels from deadly floods
    By Griff Witte
    Washington Post Foreign Service
    Friday, August 6, 2010; 11:05 AM

    ISLAMABAD, PAKISTAN — A politician with a 20 percent approval rating might not appear to have much to lose. But Pakistani President Asif Ali Zardari, his standing already seemingly at rock bottom, elicited a new level of public scorn this week.

    http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2010/08/06/AR2010080602855.html?wpisrc=nl_most&sid=ST2010080602979

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  81. Zardari Says Opponents Shouldn’t Politicize Pakistan’s Flooding Disaster
    By Paul Tighe and Khurrum Anis – Aug 8, 2010 5:32 AM

    Pakistan President Asif Ali Zardari called on his opponents to avoid playing politics over the “calamity of floods” that have struck the country, submerging villages and leaving more than four million people stranded.

    The international community and political parties at home should come together to help victims of the disaster, Zardari told a meeting late yesterday in Birmingham, U.K., the official Associated Press of Pakistan reported on its website.

    Zardari has been criticized by opponents for undertaking his visit to the U.K. and France last week while Pakistan is coping with the worst floods in 80 years that have killed more than 1,500 people and left 1.8 million people needing food supplies, according to the United Nations World Food Programme.

    Heavy rains in the past days in the northwest have renewed the threat of floods in the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa region where villages and farms were inundated, Mian Iftikhar Hussain, the provincial information minister, told APP yesterday. A flood alert is in force and troops have been deployed in the southern province of Sindh where 1.5 million people in 2,000 villages may be affected, according to the provincial government.

    http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2010-08-08/zardari-says-opponents-shouldn-t-politicize-pakistan-s-flooding-disaster.html

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  82. ‘I am proud of what I did’: Protester who threw shoes at Pakistan president remains unrepentant

    By Daily Mail Reporter
    Last updated at 3:17 PM on 8th August 2010

    A protester who threw his shoes at the Pakistan president as he gave a speech in Birmingham last night said he was proud of his actions.

    Sardar Mohammed Shamim Khan, 57, said Asif Ali Zardari’s speech had incensed him so much that he spontaneously decided to unlace his size 10 leather shoes and hurl them at the bewildered Pakistani leader.

    Police quickly led father-of-four Mr Shamim away before cautioning and later releasing him.

    An unrepentant Mr Khan, from Coventry, West Midlands, last night said: ‘I could feel the anger brewing up inside me as Zardari talked about the floods in Pakistan.

    ‘I thought we have a crisis back at home and all he can do is take a trip around Europe while his own people are suffering.’

    http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-1301293/I-proud-I-did-Protester-threw-shoes-Pakistan-president-remains-unrepentant.html?ito=feeds-newsxml

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  83. Comment: Farzana Shaikh: The man who really matters in Pakistan

    The president’s reputation is being further damaged by the floods while the head of the army’s authority is thriving on them

    Sunday, August 8, 2010

    Whatever David Cameron may say, looking both ways is by no means peculiar to Pakistan. For while Pakistan’s President Asif Ali Zardari has looked the other way as his country drowns in the worst floods in living memory, the world has looked to him for decisive leadership. Yet, it has chosen to ignore that the real wielder of power – General Ashfaq Kayani – may be quietly tightening his grip and burnishing the credentials of his ever-ambitious army.

    Even before the onset of the catastrophic floods, which prompted Kayani to head to the worst affected areas of the north-west ahead of any other political leader, it was clear that the military was gearing up to expose the government as unfit to look after Pakistan’s interests.

    Within days of Cameron’s ill-judged statement in India last month accusing Pakistan of “exporting terror”, Kayani had swung into action. In a widely publicised move he ordered the head of Pakistan’s Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI), General Shuja Pasha, to cancel his participation at a security summit with his British counterparts.

    http://www.independent.co.uk/opinion/commentators/farzana-shaikh-the-man-who-really-matters-in-pakistan-2046372.html

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  84. PSO grants contract to Israeli firm
    By Our Staff Reporter
    Tuesday, 10 Aug, 2010

    ISLAMABAD: The Pakistan State Oil, a government-run oil company, has awarded a contact to an Israeli-based firm, Turpak-Orpak, despite the government’s ban on any kind of trade or agreement with an Israeli entity.

    The matter was taken up by the Senate Standing Committee on Interior at its meeting on Monday.

    The committee did not only deal with the matter of awarding a contract to any Israeli firm but also expressed doubts over the operation of the company close to sensitive installations in the country.

    “It is an Israeli military establishment-funded company which is being headed by a military general,” committee’s Chairman Senator Talha Mehmood told Dawn.

    http://www.dawn.com/wps/wcm/connect/dawn-content-library/dawn/the-newspaper/front-page/19-pso-grants-contract-to-israeli-firm-080-hh-10

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  85. my editorial for RTI Pakistan – Tuesday, 8/10/10

    Floods – what can we do as citizens of Pakistan?

    Yesterday a friend of mine came up to me – her friend is taking a truck with provisions and water to the flood victims apparently. She wanted me to offer the guy a check as my contribution.

    I told her I am only donating to Edhi’s charity for the flood victims. He’s the only one I trust in this country to do the job honestly. He is the first one there in every emergency in Pakistan and he has built-in the necessary infrastructure over the years to deliver help – an army of staff and transport services. Even this time. (The foreign press is very worried about Falah-e-insaniat, an organization with “ties to Jamat-ud-Dawa, an Islamic charity led by the founder of the banned militant group Lashkar-e-Taiba” in other words, a front for LeT. They were supposed to be the first ones to mobilize their humanitarian relief effort in an obscure and hard to reach places- they set up 13 relief camps in KP according to the press, they all seemed very concerned that these guys might be able to win the hearts and the minds of people) – However, this is factually not correct – Edhi was the first NGO to respond in KP apart from the army and the government.

    Besides, who cares where the help is coming from? Everyone should help if they are in a position to help – even the militants. They have no quarrel with the flood victims or do they? We should all put aside our differences and get on with the job of helping the unfortunate. Even MQM. The politicians should all mobilize and stand behind the Pak Army/Government and the UN. This is not the time to start new quarrels!

    Although, it’s commendable that Pak citizens are getting together to donate edible items, bottled water and various other items to the flood victims and are even planning to deliver the goods themselves. I am not sure if this is a good idea though…how are they going to deliver the goods? The roads are blocked by flood waters. There is no infrastructure – no road network or bridges. The only way is if you fly to the rescue or go by boats. The government should create points in various cities where citizens can drop their contribution in goods. Some citizens might not have cash but they might have spare goods that they can deliver.

    In fact, the government should actually appoint an independent third party to administrate the funds and cash donations that are coming in– maybe the UN – they are after all trained and know how to organize and administrate. A special account should be set up for flood victims and administered by the UN. Most Pakistanis do not trust obscure charities, or even government officials to do the job properly. Corruption is rampant. I know, even in the past, (2005 earthquake) I didn’t donate to President or Prime Minister’s relief funds – instead I donated my contribution in cash and goods to Edhi.

    Food and Beverages’ corporations should also come forward. There are at least 50 bottled water companies in Pakistan for example. They should all donate a couple of days’ stock to the government/UN. Other companies that manufacture items like tents, edible long shelf food stuffs etc. should also contribute their leftover, spare stocks.

    The government needs to mobilize its resources including its citizens. Letting them run half cocked with their own trucks will only hamper the rescue effort and cause more disruption. Besides, the food and water might not get to the real needy folk anyway. Think of the waste!

    http://www.rtipakistan.com/site/assets/Columns-and-Blogs/citizens-of-pakistan.php

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  86. Birmingham & after
    Dawn Editorial
    Tuesday, 10 Aug, 2010

    This government seems to have a knack for making a mountain out of a molehill. Dismissed with silent contempt, the incident at Birmingham would have been forgotten. Instead, angry PPP workers acted with questionable zeal, Babar Awan came up with his balderdash, and suddenly you had exactly the mess the government would have been better off without. Reacting to the Birmingham shoe incident, Mr Awan, who holds the law portfolio in the federal cabinet, said the jiyalas too wore shoes. This gave the impression that the law minister was inciting PPP workers to do what some intolerant cynic did to President Asif Ali Zardari over the weekend.

    http://www.dawn.com/wps/wcm/connect/dawn-content-library/dawn/the-newspaper/editorial/21-birmingham-after-080-sk-02

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  87. Birmingham blues

    Birmingham has been an unlucky place for Pakistanis this weekend. At Edgbaston, the boys commonly referred to as ‘our cricket team’ displayed a level of performance so breathtakingly inferior that it would be a relief to discover that they were engaged in match-fixing. At least that would provide a plausible explanation for their abysmal showing. Dropping an unforgivable number of catches, captain Salman Butt-erfingers and his boys managed to set new records on how long you can stay on zero before scoring a single or losing your wicket. However, do not fear, for I think I have the answer to the team’s woes. Why don’t we send our blind cricket team in their place instead? After all, they managed to score 439 runs against England in one day, the highest successful run chase for any form of cricket, and they don’t drop catches either!

    Meanwhile, in a conference hall in the same city our president addressed the local community of mainly PPP supporters. Outside, a number of British-Pakistanis had gathered with placards denouncing the government and Mr Zardari. They raised unflattering slogans as he exited his vehicle but that did not dampen his spirits. Once inside the hall, the president began his rousing speech expounding previously unchartered theories of economics, religious and political history as well as philosophy.
    Firstly, the president wants “triple digit” growth in Pakistan. The lowest positive triple digit number is 100. So he wants at least 100 per cent growth per annum. China leads the world with double digit growth at over 10.4 per cent. So is he confusing growth with inflation which, under this government, has a pretty decent chance of reaching triple digits? Or is he ignoring the decimal point? So what he means is triple digits with the decimal point? This is actually known as “double digit” growth. Either way there seems to be no point, decimal or otherwise, in the president’s economic vision, as three of four provinces are submerged under water and the floods “have put us back by decades” in the words of Prime Minister Yousaf Raza Gilani.

    http://tribune.com.pk/story/37658/birmingham-blues/

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  88. Cameron, cricket and the CM
    British Prime Minister David Cameron said something in India that made him an instant celebrity in Pakistan. There have been protests all over the country with people carrying banners calling him a terrorist and some other very bad names in Pushto. President Zardari, meanwhile, took the opportunity to fly to the UK to try and get Prime Minister Cameron to change his statement. For his part the British prime minister must be given credit for being candid and unwavering with his opinion. That definitely comes as a breath of fresh air in the usually-constipated diplomatic avenues.
    Meanwhile, President Zardari was greeted by thousands of protesters at the airport who were chanting distasteful slogans. “Sir you will love it here,” whispered the high commissioner in his ear. “Your ratings have climbed miraculously and the Colony Casino has refurbished knowing that you will pay them a visit.”
    http://tribune.com.pk/story/37646/cameron-cricket-and-the-cm/

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  89. PML-N in favour of new provinces: Nawaz

    MANSEHRA/SHANKIARI: The chief of the Pakistan Muslim League – Nawaz (PML-N) Mian Muhammad Nawaz Sharif has said that his party is in favour of new provinces and they would pursue the Hazara province at a suitable time.
    Addressing a public gathering here in Shankiari on Tuesday, the PML-N chief said that instead of foreign countries, President Asif Ali Zardari should have visited the flood affected areas. The PML-N, he said, would never leave the flood affectees alone and the Punjab government would send relief goods soon for them.

    http://tribune.com.pk/story/38117/pml-n-in-favour-of-new-provinces-nawaz/

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  90. Election Commission to summon offenders
    ISLAMABAD: The Election Commission has decided to summon all legislators whose academic degrees were found invalid and give them a chance to share their point of view. The commission will then forward their cases to the relevant courts for prosecution.
    However, this procedure, which the commission has now finalised, will not begin until a staff shortage at the election body is addressed by the law ministry, said a senior commission official.
    According to the official, the ECP has finalised its strategy against 47 legislators whose degrees have been declared as fake or invalid by the Higher Education Commission (HEC) as well as the 18 legislators who have already resigned because of their fake degrees.

    http://tribune.com.pk/story/38166/election-commission-to-summon-offenders/

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  91. Govt counsel asked to consult PM on judicial commission
    ISLAMABAD: Chief Justice Iftikhar Muhammad Chaudhry has directed the additional attorney-general (AAG) to consult Prime Minister Yousaf Raza Gilani on the formation of a proposed judicial commission for the appointment of superior court judges as four senior judges of the Balochistan High Court (BHC) will be retiring within three weeks.
    While the additional attorney-general, KK Agha, was arguing on the formation of the judicial commission, the bench observed that four senior judges of the BHC, excluding the chief justice, are due to retire within three weeks. And in a situation when there would be no senior judge available how the commission would be formed to make appointments.

    http://tribune.com.pk/story/38175/govt-counsel-asked-to-consult-pm-on-judicial-commission/

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  92. UN Pakistan flood envoy warns of militant threat
    Wednesday, 11 Aug, 2010

    PARIS: The UN aid envoy to flood-stricken Pakistan warned Wednesday that armed militants could take advantage of the country’s worst humanitarian disaster by operating among its displaced victims.

    “We all hope that militants will not take advantage of the circumstances to score points” by exploiting people driven from their homes by the floods, Jean-Maurice Ripert, the United Nations’ aid envoy for Pakistan, told Le Monde.

    “The people’s misery can always be exploited by those who have political or militant aims,” the newspaper quoted him as saying, describing the floods as “the worst natural disaster the country has known.”

    http://www.dawn.com/wps/wcm/connect/dawn-content-library/dawn/news/pakistan/03-un-pakistan-flood-envoy-warns-of+militant+threat-ss-03

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  93. Govt may change economic priorities
    By Khaleeq Kiani and Ahmad Hassan
    Thursday, 12 Aug, 2010

    ISLAMABAD: Faced with a natural calamity of unprecedented magnitude, the government is considering reprioritising economic measures envisaged in the current year’s budget to meet additional expenditures to be incurred to cope with the devastation wreaked by the flood.

    “Budget might have to be reprioritised because of damage caused by heavy rains and floods,” said an official statement issued after a presentation by economic managers to Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani here on Wednesday.

    http://www.dawn.com/wps/wcm/connect/dawn-content-library/dawn/the-newspaper/front-page/19-govt-may-change-economic-priorities-280-hh-01

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  94. The most expensive Ramazan ever
    The holy month of Ramazan has arrived with pre-dawn prayers, iftar’s and frantic efforts to make up for every sin committed during the rest of the year.
    For most of us, religious fervor is accompanied with more worldly pleasures like delicious parathas, traditional khajla and pheni to be devoured at sehri and the innumerable delights of Iftar. Would Ramazan even feel like Ramazan if not for the daily dose of fruit chat and the onion and potato pakoras and samosas?
    http://blogs.tribune.com.pk/story/1051/the-most-expensive-ramazan-ever/

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  95. Nawaz, Gilani agree to pool resources

    ISLAMABAD: After weeks of bickering between their two parties, Prime Minister Yousaf Raza Gilani and his two-time predecessor Nawaz Sharif spoke to each other over the phone on Thursday night and agreed to pool resources for flood relief activities.

    According to a handout statement issued by Gilani’s media office, the PML-N chief told the premier that he wants to share some suggestions with him on how to take forward rescue and relief operations across Pakistan. Neither the handout nor the officials of the PML-N who talked to The Express Tribune specifically mentioned what Sharif would be sharing with Gilani.

    http://tribune.com.pk/story/38877/nawaz-gilani-agree-to-pool-resources/

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  96. Zardari visits flood-hit area for the first time
    SUKKUR: President Asif Ali Zardari on Thursday sought to fend off a public outcry over his response to the catastrophic floods countrywide by visiting a flood-hit area for the first time and handing out relief.
    The president visited Sukkur and was briefed about the damage and relief efforts in the densely populated southern province of Sindh, where the government said on Thursday that waters were receding.
    PTV broadcasted silent footage of Zardari, wearing a traditional Sindhi cap and patting the head of an elderly woman at a relief camp, before visiting Sukkur Barrage and viewing the water.
    Local officials told a news agency that the president distributed relief goods among flood victims at a camp in a college, assuring survivors that the government was doing the maximum possible to assist them.

    http://tribune.com.pk/story/38871/zardari-visits-flood-hit-area-for-the-first-time/

    Pakistani president returns home to flood crisis
    By Faisal Aziz

    SUKKUR | Tue Aug 10, 2010 4:06pm EDT

    SUKKUR Pakistan (Reuters) – Pakistani President Asif Ali Zardari returned home on Tuesday from foreign visits to a chorus of criticism over his government’s response to the country’s worst flooding in 80 years.

    The floods, triggered by unusually heavy monsoon rain over the upper Indus river basin that started nearly two weeks ago, have plowed a swathe of destruction more than 1,000 km (600 miles) long from northern Pakistan to the south, killing more than 1,600 people.

    The weather cleared in some areas allowing helicopters, including U.S. aircraft, to resume flights to help more than 13 million people — about 8 percent of the population — whose lives have been disrupted by the floods, including two million homeless.

    http://www.reuters.com/article/idUSTRE66T3RS20100810?feedType=nl&feedName=ustopnewsearly

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  97. Army cancels Aug 14 events
    RAWALPINDI: Chief of Army Staff General Ashfaq Parvez Kayani announced that Army functions on 14th August and 6th September will not be held this year and savings thus accrued will be utilised for relief activities
    A special corps commanders’ conference, chaired by the army chief, was held on Thursday at General Headquarters to review the flood situation in the country and the ongoing relief and rescue activities by the army. The army chief expressed deep sorrow over the loss of precious lives and the damages caused to private property and public infrastructure by the unprecedented floods.
    http://tribune.com.pk/story/38849/army-cancels-aug-14-events/

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  98. Low on credibility, govt struggles for aid
    ISLAMABAD: Mutual trust is everything when it comes to money deals. However, this is something that is lacking between international donors and the government of Pakistan, which is hampering the effort to cope with the worst-ever flooding in the country’s history.
    The country’s ‘tainted’ past when it comes to spending money from multilateral and bilateral donors appears to be behind the slow pace of aid coming in from across the world as well as the apprehension that surrounds the support.
    Most of the money this time is being channelised through either the United Nations agencies or other non-governmental organisations (NGOs).

    http://tribune.com.pk/story/38870/low-on-credibility-govt-struggles-for-aid/

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  99. KP accuses NDMA of diverting relief goods
    By Zulfiqar Ali
    Friday, 13 Aug, 2010

    PESHAWAR: The Khyber Pakhtunkhwa government has accused the National Disaster Management Authority of being more generous in dispatching relief goods to Multan, the hometown of Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani.

    According to documents of the provincial government, Multan and Sukkur districts have received the lion’s share of goods donated by different countries and charity organisations.

    Provincial Information Minister Mian Iftikhar Hussain described response of the federal government and NDMA to the crisis as pathetic and said his province had been ignored in distribution of relief goods.

    http://www.dawn.com/wps/wcm/connect/dawn-content-library/dawn/the-newspaper/front-page/19-kp-accuses-ndma-of-diverting-relief-goods-to-pms-hometown-380-hh-03

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  100. Comment: Economic collapse
    By Cyril Almeida
    Friday, 13 Aug, 2010

    What could be worse than floods that have displaced millions, killed thousands and destroyed huge swathes of farmland, a catastrophe the country will take years to recover from?

    Some people think they know, and the answer terrifies them. Away from the political mishegoss in Islamabad, calculators are anxiously being pulled out and back-of-the-envelope calculations are furiously being made by the serious-minded folks.

    The numbers are numbing: even before the floods, Pakistan seemed to be heading for economic collapse; after the floods, that appears to be all but a certainty.

    Gone will be the days of loadshedding — because there will be no electricity at all in the grid. Inflation, which has stayed stubbornly high, will spike again — because a sustained budget deficit is forcing the government to borrow money, keeping the economy awash in surplus money, more cash chasing the same amount of goods.

    http://www.dawn.com/wps/wcm/connect/dawn-content-library/dawn/the-newspaper/columnists/19-cyril-almeida-economic-collapse-380-hh-19

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  101. Comment: The MDGs given up?
    By I. A. Rehman
    Thursday, 12 Aug, 2010

    The havoc wrought by the unprecedented floods will greatly increase the anxieties caused by the Planning Commission’s confession that Pakistan will not be able to achieve most of the poverty alleviation targets put together in Millennium Development Goals (MDGs).

    While the Planning Commission deserves credit for the recently released Draft MDG Review Report 2010 the situation revealed by it is quite bleak. The gist of the report is as follows:

    MDG1: Eradicating extreme poverty and hunger.

    “The targets for the Medium-Term Development Framework (MTDF) 2009-10 have not been met in the three indicators for Goal 1, and it does not look likely that the MDG target for 2015, more than halving the poverty target in five years, will be achieved”.

    MDG 2:Achieving universal primary education.

    “The MDG target of achieving 100 per cent net enrolment ratio by 2015 requires an increase of 40 percentage points in the next six years (as) compared to 20 percentage points in the last 10 years. The completion/survival rate of students enrolled in primary schools also presents a dismal scenario which implies that almost half of the students enrolled in primary schools do not complete their education. The interim target for 2009-10 was set at 80 per cent and cannot be achieved. Pakistan’s literacy rate remains considerably short of the MDG target of 88 per cent by 2015…”

    http://www.dawn.com/wps/wcm/connect/dawn-content-library/dawn/the-newspaper/columnists/19-i-a-rehman-the-mdgs-given-up-280-hh-06

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  102. Comment: Holy cows
    Recently, President Asif Ali Zardari made a strange public statement, one among many of his peculiar gems. In response to the criticism of his visit to Europe, he said that those who were sitting outside the parliament were criticising the government. Suddenly, it seemed that the right to criticise the government of the day had become the exclusive domain of parliamentarians. The rest of us lesser mortals sitting outside the hallowed halls of parliament had lost our fundamental right to question the government’s actions and inactions.
    The democratically-elected government is not the only institution that considers itself a sacred cow, above and beyond public criticism. Before this, other institutions of the state have claimed the right to immunity from public scrutiny at the risk of dire consequences for ordinary mortals. In our country, ideology laws forbid the criticism of the armed forces and of state actions, declaring any utterance to be unpatriotic and against ‘national interests’. The possibility that a critique of national institutions may be based on a very strong patriotic impulse is not even entertained.

    http://tribune.com.pk/story/38667/holy-cows/

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  103. Comment: Ramazan price hike
    Dawn Editorial
    Friday, 13 Aug, 2010

    Even before the sighting of the Ramazan moon each year, Pakistani consumers are hit by the spiralling prices of essential food items. This year, the people’s miseries have been compounded by devastating floods across the country, with millions of acres of agricultural land destroyed by the raging torrents.

    http://www.dawn.com/wps/wcm/connect/dawn-content-library/dawn/the-newspaper/editorial/19-ramazan-price-hike-380-hh-16

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  104. Comment: The wrath of the Almighty
    By M. A. Niazi | Published: August 13, 2010

    With the annual monsoon flooding having exceeded anything in living memory, the people of Pakistan have been forced to take a long hard look at their rulers, and have found what they have seen not particularly appetising. Heading the list of targets of popular ire has been President Asif Zardari, who has chosen this juncture to go ahead with not just one trip abroad, but two, not to another set of Third World countries, but to Europe and Russia.
    One of the surprising things has been how the rains have exceeded expectations. One of the disadvantages of an exotic-river system, like that of the Indus, is that there are annual floods. It is probably not the right time to go into the details of how exotic-river systems are produced, but it should suffice to say that exotic rivers rise exceptionally during the flood season, burst their banks and flood their floodplains, on which they also develop silt, making its banks eminently suitable for growing crops. Indeed, early civilisations are supposed to have developed along the banks of exotic rivers, whether the Ancient Egyptian civilisation along the Nile, the Mohenjo-Daro and Harappa civilisation along the Indus, or the Ancient Chinese civilisation along the Hwang ho and Yangtze kiang. It is not without significance that all of these rivers are still centres of civilisation. It is also to be noted that when Pakistan was created, it included not just the Indus river system of the Punjab, but also the Ganges-Brahmaputra system in East Bengal, which became Bangladesh in 1971. However, both wings of Pakistan had the same problem: their respective rivers’ headwaters were in India. Bangladesh developed problems with India over these waters after coming into being. The floods have been important to Pakistan before; the 1971 Cyclone occurred just before the elections that year, and the failure by the administration to relieve the suffering caused by the resulting floods is supposed to have contributed to the separatist sentiment in the Eastern Wing that led to the Awami League’s victory. It should be remembered that the then President, Yahya Khan, remained in the country.

    http://www.nation.com.pk/pakistan-news-newspaper-daily-english-online/Opinions/Columns/13-Aug-2010/The-wrath-of-the-Almighty

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  105. Comment: Join hands for flood relief
    By Dr Ijaz Ahsan | Published: August 13, 2010

    The worst calamity in the history of the country is playing havoc with lives and properties, including crops and infrastructure; in fact it is swallowing up towns. Millions of people have been uprooted from their homes and are lying under the sky without food, water or shelter. Government efforts, as usual, are quite inadequate compared to the size of the tragedy.
    During the Kashmir earthquake of 2005, the people were immediately motivated and relief goods had started arriving at the scene the very next day. Unluckily, this time the response has been slower. Maybe because then the affected regions were quite well defined, while now there is devastation everywhere, in every province, and thus making it difficult to decide where to start from. The roads have also been washed away by the floods that have made communication more difficult. Or, maybe it is a case of donor fatigue. Be that as it may, there is need for the whole nation to get into the act; there is so much to be done that no one should sit idle.

    http://www.nation.com.pk/pakistan-news-newspaper-daily-english-online/Opinions/Columns/13-Aug-2010/Join-hands-for-flood-relief

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  106. comment: Just a dream?
    Published: August 12, 2010
    Atle Hetland
    A new school year is beginning, but for millions of Pakistani girls and boys, education remains a distant dream. Flood victims, IDPs, refugees and others affected by multiple emergencies are not likely to go to school – at a time when education should be considered more important.
    Before the elections in Pakistan in 2008, all political parties promised to work for Education for All (EFA) in accordance with international and local efforts in the new millennium to reach the goals by 2015. Alas, little has been done to change the situation. The required expansion of the education budget has not been made. As a matter of fact, in certain fields there have been budget cuts, such as in this year’s higher education budget. True, the higher education budgets had grown more than those for other sub-sectors for the last six or seven years, and education planners usually advise that primary education is the most important sub-sector, and it should grow more than the other sectors. In Pakistan, when the total federal government education budget is only about two percent of GDP, all sub-sectors should have increased their budgets, to reach to the five percent of GDP, as is recommended by UNESCO, the United Nations Education Agency. Why does this not happen? Why are there still millions of children out of school or attending substandard primary schools? Even Kenya, a poorer country than Pakistan, has had free Universal Primary Education (UPE) since a multi-party government came into power in 2003.

    http://www.nation.com.pk/pakistan-news-newspaper-daily-english-online/Opinions/Columns/12-Aug-2010/Just-a-dream

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  107. A leadership index
    Listing the Who’s Who of contemporary Pakistan isn’t difficult. Thanks to decades of systematic ‘elitist’ education, entrenched biradari politics, circular khandani business networking and ‘society-specific’ (the new-age version for class/caste) familial practices, those ‘who matter’ are dated/married/related to or have worked/served with everyone else ‘who matters’ as well.

    http://tribune.com.pk/story/38645/a-leadership-index/

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  108. Deficit widens to $1.45b in July

    ISLAMABAD: Pakistan’s trade deficit widened by 24 per cent in July as import growth surpassed the growth in exports, and the State Bank may be compelled to take measures aimed at curtailing import demand if the trend continues.
    The gap between exports and imports widened to $1.45 billion in July, according to the Federal Bureau of Statistics on Thursday. The trade deficit was recorded at $1.17 billion last July.

    http://tribune.com.pk/story/38731/deficit-widens-to-1-45b-in-july/

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  109. Exports grow by 21.83 percent in July
    ISLAMABAD (August 13 2010): Country’s exports grew by 21.83 percent during the first month of the current fiscal year as compared to the same month of last year. Exports in July 2010 were recorded at $1.787 billion against the exports of 1.467 billion during last year, according to data provided by Federal Bureau of Statistics.

    Imports into the country during the month under review also increased by 22.72 percent by growing up from $2.639 billion to $3.238 billion during last July. Based on the imports and exports, the trade deficit of $1.45 billion was recorded in July 2010, the FBS figures revealed.

    As compared to June 2010, exports from the country decreased by 1.73 percent by falling from $1.819 to $1.787 billion in July 2010. Imports into the country increased by 0.45 percent in July 2010 as compared to the imports of June 2010. Imports in June 2010 were recorded at $3.22 billion.

    http://www.brecorder.com/index.php?id=1091055&currPageNo=1&query=&search=&term=&supDate=

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  110. Relief activities will not impact fight against militants: army
    ISLAMABAD: Pakistan’s army is playing the leading role in rescue efforts after the worst floods in decades, but it will not divert forces from the battle against militants, military officials said on Friday.

    The floods, the country’s most severe natural disaster, began two weeks ago and have killed more than 1,600 people, forced two million from their homes and disrupting the lives of about 14 million people, or eight per cent of the population.

    http://www.dawn.com/wps/wcm/connect/dawn-content-library/dawn/news/pakistan/04-pakistan-relief-war-on-terror-qs-07

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  111. President to cut short Russia visit
    Friday, 13 Aug, 2010

    ISLAMABAD: After strong criticism of his visit to France and the United Kingdom at a time when the nation was coping with the worst flood, President Asif Ali Zardari has decided to cut short his visit to Russia.

    According to the presidential spokesman, President Zardari has cut short his visit because of flood situation in the country and he will now visit Russia for only a few hours instead of two days.

    http://www.dawn.com/wps/wcm/connect/dawn-content-library/dawn/the-newspaper/front-page/19-zardari-to-visit-russia-next-week-380-hh-09

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  112. Pakistan President shoe thrower from coventry fears for his safety
    Aug 15 2010 by Ben Goldby, Sunday Mercury

    A PROTESTER who threw his shoes at the Pakistani President during a rally in Birmingham is in hiding after receiving death threats.

    Sardar Mohammad Shamim Khan, 57, launched the attack after becoming enraged by Asif Ali Zardari’s handling of his country’s floods disaster.

    Now the Coventry dad-of-four has taken shelter among the Kashmiri community in Alum Rock after receiving threats from supporters of the Pakistan leader.

    A source close to Khan told the Sunday Mercury: “He feels that he can’t go home at the moment, so he is keeping a very low profile.

    “His family has been threatened over in Pakistan, the irony is that most of them are actually Zardari supporters.

    “He has also had threatening phonecalls as well, most likely from overseas. At the moment he is scared for his safety.”

    Speaking after the attack Mr Khan – who had shouted “Allah is the only one who can give and take lives” – said he was proud that he had thrown his shoes at the Pakistani leader.

    “I could feel the anger brewing up inside me,” he said. “I thought, we’ve a crisis back at home and all he can do is take a trip around Europe while his own people are suffering.

    http://www.sundaymercury.net/news/midlands-news/2010/08/15/pakistan-president-shoe-thrower-from-coventry-fears-for-his-safety-66331-27063669/

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  113. Pakistan does not need western aid, opposition leader claims
    Pakistan’s opposition leader has claimed that his country does not need Western aid and should “stand on its own two feet” as the UN chief called for the world to send money to the flood-hit region.

    By Dean Nelson in Lahore
    Published: 7:44PM BST 15 Aug 2010

    Nawaz Sharif said his country had sufficient resources to rebuild millions of homes, buildings and bridges destroyed in the worst floods in 80 years.
    He was speaking amid growing concern that the international community was not responding quickly enough with aid for more than 20 million people displaced by the floods.

    Ban Ki-moon, the United Nations secretary-general, yesterday backed the appeal of Yousuf Raza Gilani, Pakistan’s prime minister, and President Asif Zardari for urgent assistance.

    “I’m here to urge the world community to speed up their assistance to the Pakistani people,” Mr Ban said as he visited the disaster zone for the first time.

    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldnews/asia/pakistan/7946687/Pakistan-does-not-need-western-aid-opposition-leader-claims.html

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  114. comment: We must have answers
    By Kamran Shafi
    Tuesday, 17 Aug, 2010

    An appeal has been made to My Lord the Chief Justice of Pakistan by 10 eminent citizens, in the following words. “An appeal by the citizens of Pakistan: Request to scrutinise the five-year tax returns, declaration of assets and the foreign nationality of parliamentarians and the president.

    http://www.dawn.com/wps/wcm/connect/dawn-content-library/dawn/the-newspaper/columnists/19-kamran-shafi-we-must-have-answers-780-hh-07

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  115. comment: The costs of our misrule
    Asad Durrani

    Regardless of who ruled Pakistan – a man in uniform or someone in civvies – the real power was always exercised by what the Soviets called the nomenklatura, we the establishment, and some others, the brotherhood. Faces changed and, at times, also their influence. Nonetheless, the big league consisted primarily of the civil and military bureaucracy, the business and landed elite, and the politicos in office. Sounds like an oligarchy, with a khaki camouflage or a civilian facade! True, except that the lobbies and the pressure groups influence policies in all systems. In a democratic dispensation the advantage seems to be that the people, who decide the fate of a government every few years, also matter. We were advised to be patient because some day the multitude too would benefit from the trickle-down of the great democratic order. Our oligarchs, however, pass down only the cost of their misrule.

    http://tribune.com.pk/story/40217/the-costs-of-our-misrule/

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  116. US frustrated with Zardari’s political free-fall following poor flood relief response
    Submitted 1 hr 27 mins ago

    The United States is frustrated by Pakistan President Asif Ali Zardari’s falling political popularity following his government’s slow response to the deluge, which has submerged almost one-fifth of the nation, American officials have said.
    The Obama administration, which is working hard to work together with the Pakistan government to allay the wide spread anti-American sentiments in the country, is irritated by Islamabad’s slow response to the worst floods to have hit the country in decades.

    http://www.nation.com.pk/pakistan-news-newspaper-daily-english-online/Politics/18-Aug-2010/US-frustrated-with-Zardaris-political-freefall-following-poor-flood-relief-response

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  117. Airbase near Jacobabad under US control, Senate panel told
    By Imran Ali Teepu
    Thursday, 19 Aug, 2010

    ISLAMABAD: Health relief operations in Jacobabad are not possible because the airbase in the area is controlled by the US.

    The stunning statement was made by Health Secretary Khushnood Lashari during an appearance at the Senate Standing Committee on Health on Wednesday.

    “Health relief operations are not possible in the flood-affected areas of Jacobabad because the airbase is with the United States,” Mr Lashari said while answering a question asked by Senator Semeen Yusuf Siddiqui of PML-Q.

    http://www.dawn.com/wps/wcm/connect/dawn-content-library/dawn/the-newspaper/front-page/airbase-near-jacobabad-under-us-control,-senate-panel-told-980

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  118. comment: Hardly surprising
    Amina Jilani

    The media-venting of ire against the head of state of this Islamic Republic continues, like the floods, unabated. Scorn is heaped upon the head of government as Yousaf Raza Gilani so pathetically blunders by word and deed.

    http://tribune.com.pk/story/41223/hardly-surprising/

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  119. Politics & media in Pakistan: another new dictionary
    BY NADEEM F. PARACHA ON 08 20TH, 2010 | COMMENTS (109)

    Asif Ali Zardari:

    Wealthy salesman for Bata Shoes. Recently got a shoe thrown at him by a dissatisfied customer.

    Army:

    Pakistan’s largest political party. Has ruled the most without ever contesting an election. Has a wonderful tradition of coming in swinging a danda, then running out waving a white flag. Enjoys great support among the chattering classes across the country’s drawing-rooms.

    http://blog.dawn.com/2010/08/20/politics-media-in-pakistan-another-new-dictionary/

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  120. US magazine unveils list
    WASHINGTON: President Asif Ali Zardari, who was touring Europe while Pakistan was ravaged by the worst floods seen in almost a century, has topped a unique list of influential people who were conspicuously absent when they were needed the most.
    http://tribune.com.pk/story/41722/us-magazine-unveils-list/

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  121. Altaf’s remarks about martial law criticised by most parties
    By Bhagwandas
    Monday, 23 Aug, 2010

    KARACHI: Almost every ruling and opposition parties have opposed the Muttahida Qaumi Movement chief Altaf Hussain’s call to ‘patriotic generals to take action similar to martial law against corrupt politicians’, saying that a civilian set-up must be supported over a military rule.

    http://www.dawn.com/wps/wcm/connect/dawn-content-library/dawn/the-newspaper/local/altafs-remarks-about-martial-law-criticised-by-most-parties-380

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  122. comment: Kalabagh controversy
    Dawn Editorial
    Monday, 23 Aug, 2010

    Almost inevitably, in the wake of the floods, certain voices in favour of the construction of the Kalabagh dam are being raised once again. On a visit to Multan, Prime Minister Gilani suggested that the dam could have saved parts of the country from extensive flooding — a claim quickly disputed by experts who distinguished the ‘run-of-the-river’ Kalabagh dam design from a ‘flood-control’ dam.

    http://news.dawn.com/wps/wcm/connect/dawn-content-library/dawn/the-newspaper/editorial/kalabagh-controversy-380

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  123. comment: Flood-zoning policy
    Dawn Editorial
    Monday, 23 Aug, 2010

    Some politicians and officials have attributed the flood disaster to unregulated construction and development on river banks. As reported by Dawn, these politicians and officials — including the federal agriculture minister and the Federal Flood Commission chairman — say that widespread settlement build-up and construction along the river banks and even on dried-up riverbeds across the country had blocked the natural course of the rivers.

    http://news.dawn.com/wps/wcm/connect/dawn-content-library/dawn/the-newspaper/editorial/floodzoning-policy-380

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  124. comment: Mourning the Sialkot killings
    BY JAWAD MUZAFFAR ON 08 23RD, 2010 | COMMENTS (27)
    Let us all mourn for the family of the two brothers who were killed by an angry mob in the presence of police officials in Sialkot last week.

    My heart compelled me to write this due to the depression and anxiety that has been looming in my mind after hearing about the brutal killings.

    Pakistan has been going through a terrible crisis situation. No one knows where this country is going, but it certainly does not feel like we are heading in the right direction. Is this is the beginning of some terrible end?

    Everyone has a heart. I wonder how can someone’s heart and mind go so numb that not even a single person out of the mob came in front to stop the brutal act. Many people were present on the sad site for hours and while making videos, they forgot their moral, social and religious duties. I can’t stop wondering how no one felt pity on the young boys who were even being beaten up after they had lost their lives. This is evidence of sheer inhumanity, rather the height of it.

    http://blog.dawn.com/2010/08/23/nation-mourns-sialkot-sons%E2%80%99-killings/

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  125. Floods raise spectre of social unrest
    Sunday, 22 Aug, 2010

    ISLAMABAD: Nearly a month after Pakistan’s worst ever natural disaster flooded a fifth of the country and hit 20 million people, the spectres of social unrest and extremism are stalking the nation.

    Torrential rains have had a catastrophic impact on the impoverished, nuclear-armed nation, causing economic losses that could see Pakistan default on an IMF loan and leaving eight million people dependent on aid for survival.

    http://news.dawn.com/wps/wcm/connect/dawn-content-library/dawn/news/pakistan/03-Floods-raise-spectre-of-social-unrest-ss-11

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  126. Murder will out
    BY SHYEMA ON 08 23RD, 2010 | COMMENTS (2)

    A judicial executioner, someone whose job description in simple terms requires him to kill, covers his face when he carries out a death sentence. The reasons for this vary from law to law, but one thing is for certain, no executioner would probably want his face displayed each time he drops the rope. I am not sure however, if this sentiment applies to the angry Pakistani mobs who have boldly taken to the streets to burn, beat and kill anyone who may have allegedly done something wrong. Hiding faces or identities is not even necessary here where even the men in uniform have been clearly caught on camera amidst these barbaric mobs.

    http://blog.dawn.com/2010/08/23/murder-will-out/

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  127. Video of mob killings sparks anguish in Pakistan
    Sunday, 22 Aug, 2010

    ISLAMABAD: The men took turns savagely beating the two teenage brothers with sticks, drawing blood before dragging and hanging their dead bodies from a nearby pole. None of the dozens of people watching tried to stop the attack, not even several police. The boys may have been mistaken for robbers.

    The scene, caught on video and broadcast on news channels, has outraged and anguished Pakistanis, some of whom are asking if years of state neglect have brutalized society. It also is a blow to the already-shoddy image of the government as it appeals for international aid to cope with disastrous floods.

    http://news.dawn.com/wps/wcm/connect/dawn-content-library/dawn/news/pakistan/video+of+mob+killings+sparks+anguish+in+pakistan

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  128. The Sialkot incident
    Monday, 23 Aug, 2010

    I would like to draw the attention of the public and also the concerned officials to the incident that marred Sialkot and all Pakistanis alike. It seems that we Pakistanis have unfortunately become maniacs. Whether it is celebrations, sorrow, anger, we take the stride to the highest limit.

    The torture of two brothers by the mob has shocked me and I am sure many other Pakistanis alike; not only the very act is horrendous, but also the constant airing of the horrendous video by TV channels in every news bulletin. Please for the sake of the families of the deceased and all Pakistanis stop this cheap advertisement of barbarianism.

    http://news.dawn.com/wps/wcm/connect/dawn-content-library/dawn/the-newspaper/letters-to-the-editor/the-sialkot-incident-380

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  129. comment: Pakistan’s human cockroaches
    Fasi Zaka

    Pakistan, you are a failed state. Not because of Zardari. Not because of America. But because you are a failed people, all of us undeserving of sympathy. We are diseased, rotten to every brain stem, world please make an impenetrable fence around us, keep us all in so we don’t spread it to other people, other countries.
    These were words I posted on a social networking website. I have an unusually negative mindset these days. It happened after I saw the video of the two teenage brothers brutally clubbed to death by a crowd frenzied with blood thirst in Sialkot. The police watched gleefully. The video has blurs at certain parts, but even this sensible sensitivity does not prevent one from seeing mists of blood flaying from the heads of these teens as they are hit relentlessly, and remorselessly, again and again.
    http://tribune.com.pk/story/42158/pakistan%E2%80%99s-human-cockroaches/

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  130. comment: Do we even want this barbarism to stop?
    Faheem Younus

    What are some of the key features of the Sialkot tragedy? Innocent young men being mauled by a mob filled with hate, and with dozens of people standing by, including the police, all doing nothing. These are not the hallmarks of a regular terror attack where in a split second dozens of lives are lost.

    http://tribune.com.pk/story/42156/do-we-even-want-this-barbarism-to-stop/

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  131. comment: Putting on a brave face and standing tall?
    By Kamran Shafi
    Tuesday, 24 Aug, 2010

    There is so much to write about this week, but first to my friend Mr Mukhtar Butt, earlier of Karachi Cantonment, now just of Karachi, as quoted in ‘Letters to the Editor’ of Aug 20.

    He says, “We always target the army that ruled for almost 31 years but we tend to ignore the rule by civilians that also runs over 32 years and not 17 years as quoted by the writer.”

    I had merely taken the years the Pakistan Army ruled Pakistan directly under various types of martial law and attempted to show the periods that dictators remained in power as against elected civilians.

    http://www.dawn.com/wps/wcm/connect/dawn-content-library/dawn/the-newspaper/columnists/kamran-shafi-putting-on-a-brave-face-and-standing-tall-480

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  132. comment: the meaning of Sialkot
    By Rafia Zakaria
    Wednesday, 25 Aug, 2010

    IT was Aug 15, the day after the country’s 63rd birthday, a day already mired in misery as hundreds of thousands of Pakistanis roamed the land in search of dry ground. In the midst of this, another tragedy unfolded in Sialkot, whose brutality seemed unparalleled even in the shadow of such pre-existing despair.

    The story of the two brothers, Hafiz Mughees and Hafiz Muneeb is by now well known, as is the image of their bloodied, beaten and bruised dead bodies; the tragic symbols of a nation’s mutilated conscience. The aftermath of the killings has followed the expected pretences, the same cabal of leaders expressing their outrage, the same media frenzy posturing as debate and the same groups of beaten-down human rights advocates calling attention to the breakdown of law and order in the country.

    http://www.dawn.com/wps/wcm/connect/dawn-content-library/dawn/the-newspaper/columnists/rafia-zakaria-the-meaning-of-sialkot-580

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  133. comment: EDITORIAL: The Altaf saga continues

    In an interview with Time magazine, President Zardari ruled out the possibility of a military coup in the light of Muttahida Qaumi Movement (MQM) chief Altaf Hussain’s recent appeal to “patriotic generals”. The president said that the country is going through such a difficult phase that he does not foresee “anybody in his right mind will be wanting to take this responsibility. It is only democracy that can carry this yoke.” Mr Zardari does have a point but even then the MQM chief’s audacity to contemplate such a move is inexplicable. The furore over Mr Hussain’s remarks has not died down, and understandably so. In Pakistan’s 63-year old history, we have been ruled by military dictators for more than half of our existence. In 2008, Pakistan returned to democracy after nine years of General Musharraf’s rule. Thus, giving an open call to the generals to intervene directly or indirectly in getting rid of the incumbent civilian dispensation is a clear violation of the constitution and against democratic norms.

    http://www.dailytimes.com.pk/default.asp?page=2010\08\26\story_26-8-2010_pg3_1

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  134. COMMENT: Politics in the midst of natural disaster —S P Seth

    Pakistan’s human tragedy requires international help as a human gesture, and not as part of an anti-terrorist strategy. It is the duty of the government to requisition all internal and external resources to deal with the situation, without making it another front against terrorism
    http://www.dailytimes.com.pk/default.asp?page=2010\08\26\story_26-8-2010_pg3_3

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  135. Support for the flood survivors
    EDITORIAL (August 26 2010): The Federal Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi revealed that during the two special United Nations sessions called by the Secretary General Ban-ki Moon, subsequent to his visit to the flood affected areas, which led him to acknowledge that this is the worst natural disaster that he had ever witnessed, 810 million dollars were pledged.
    http://www.brecorder.com/index.php?id=1096032&currPageNo=1&query=&search=&term=&supDate=

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  136. comment: Savagery in Sialkot
    Published: August 26, 2010

    Azam Khalil
    “All cruelty springs from weakness.”
    – Seneca
    The Pakistani nation should do a bit of soul-searching after what happened in Sialkot. Even though it is not the first time that such savagery has been committed, but hopefully it will not result in the same pathetic decision that allows those who perpetrated this horrendous crime to be let off the hook. It is extremely unfortunate that when the international community was more focused on the lifetime misery of the victims of the terrible floods, which have taken a devastating toll of life and property, the tragic incident occurred.

    http://www.nation.com.pk/pakistan-news-newspaper-daily-english-online/Opinions/Columns/26-Aug-2010/Savagery-in-Sialkot

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  137. comment: Dialectics of humanity and violence
    Published: August 25, 2010

    Shireen M Mazari
    Are we a brutalised society or merely a militarised state? Recent developments on different fronts have highlighted the contrasting images of ourselves and our rulers. For instance, the floods have brought out some interesting dialectics of the Pakistani state and society. The latter has rallied round once again in the face of a natural calamity that has hit the country, and donations have been coming in fast from young and old, with youth groups like the Pakistan Youth Alliance being one of the few civilian relief providers to reach into areas like Rajanpur and beyond. However, beyond the military, the civilian structures of the state and government have been almost non-existent in outlying areas. Then there is the increasing distrust prevalent between the government and almost everyone else and hardly anyone is prepared to donate funds to the government itself.

    http://www.nation.com.pk/pakistan-news-newspaper-daily-english-online/Opinions/Columns/25-Aug-2010/Dialectics-of-humanity-and-violence

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  138. comment: Anatomy of brutality
    By I.A. Rehman
    Thursday, 26 Aug, 2010
    THE brutal killing of two young brothers by a mob in Sialkot while some policemen watched the incident without any sign of disapproval has exposed serious flaws in the working of law-enforcement agencies and public views on crime and punishment that cannot be ignored.

    There is some consolation in the fact that this ghastly affair has sent shock waves across the country. Similar incidents have occurred in the past but none of them made the people so angry as this one. The difference has surely been made by the live TV coverage of the incident. But the basic issue is: will all the parties concerned derive the correct lessons from the outrage? One may assume that the people wish to receive guarantees that incidents like this will not recur. But such assurances cannot be offered unless the factors contributing to the conduct of the culprits are identified.

    http://www.dawn.com/wps/wcm/connect/dawn-content-library/dawn/the-newspaper/columnists/i-a-rehman-anatomy-of-brutality-680

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  139. MQM’s tit-for-tat privilege motions against PML-N
    By Amir Wasim
    Thursday, 26 Aug, 2010

    ISLAMABAD: Stung by the privilege motion submitted by PML-N to the National Assembly Secretariat against Altaf Hussain, the MQM on Wednesday submitted three similar motions referring to the PML-N’s alleged contacts with the army and its governance in Punjab.

    http://www.dawn.com/wps/wcm/connect/dawn-content-library/dawn/the-newspaper/front-page/mqms-titfortat-privilege-motions-against-pmln-680

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  140. Shoot-on-sight order in Gilgit after heavy firing
    By Our Correspondent
    Thursday, 26 Aug, 2010

    GILGIT: A shoot-on-sight order was issued after two rival groups resorted to heavy aerial firing soon after Iftar near Yadgar Chowk here on Wednesday, police said.

    Two people were gunned down in the same area on Tuesday. Sources said that paramilitary troops and police came to the area only after the shootout subsided.

    http://www.dawn.com/wps/wcm/connect/dawn-content-library/dawn/the-newspaper/front-page/shootonsight-order-in-gilgit-after-heavy-firing-680

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  141. comment: Pakistan’s prize bluffer —Dr Mohammad Taqi

    While the disaster management efforts of the present government in the wake of the massive floods are shoddy at best, to call for a quasi-military rule in a country that has suffered four martial laws is to submerge it in a bigger deluge

    “Mussolini is the biggest bluffer in Europe. If Mussolini had me taken out and shot tomorrow morning, I would still regard him as a bluff. Get a hold of a good photo of Signor Mussolini sometime and study it. You will see the weakness in his mouth that forces him to scowl the famous Mussolini scowl that is imitated by every 19-year old Fascisto in Italy. Study his past record” — ‘Mussolini, Europe’s prize bluffer’, Earnest Hemingway, The Toronto Daily Star, 1923.

    http://www.dailytimes.com.pk/default.asp?page=2010\08\26\story_26-8-2010_pg3_2

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  142. Pakistan in political crisis amid allegations of flooding aid corruption
    The embattled government of President Asif Ali Zardari slipped further into crisis after its largest coalition partner called for a military coup to tackle corruption and failures over flooding.

    Rob Crilly in Islamabad and Damien McElroy
    Published: 10:11PM BST 23 Aug 2010

    Altaf Hussain, the leader of the Muttahida Quami Movement (MQM), said the political establishment’s lacklustre response to the severe flooding should provoke an uprising.
    He called on “patriotic generals to initiate martial-law-like steps against federal politicians” and legal proceedings against those “who save their crops and divert floods towards the localities as well as villages of the poor”.

    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldnews/asia/pakistan/7960923/Pakistan-in-political-crisis-amid-allegations-of-flooding-aid-corruption.html

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  143. PILDAT terms Altaf’s statement unfortunate

    Staff Report

    ISLAMABAD: The Pakistan Institute of Legislative Development and Transparency (PILDAT) has termed the MQM chief Altaf Hussain’s call to “patriotic generals to initiate martial law-like steps against feudal politicians” as inappropriate and unfortunate but at the same time indicative of the growing public frustration with weak governance.

    http://www.dailytimes.com.pk/default.asp?page=2010\08\26\story_26-8-2010_pg11_7

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  144. Balochistan shuts down on Bugti’s death anniversary
    Thursday, 26 Aug, 2010

    QUETTA: A shutter down strike was being observed in Quetta and several other parts of Balochistan province on Thursday on the occasion of the fourth death anniversary of Baloch nationalist leader Nawab Akbar Khan Bugti.

    The strike was called by the Jamhoori Watan Party (JWP) and the Balochistan Republican Party (BRP). A complete shut down was in place in the province’s Quetta, Mastung, Kalat, Khuzdar, Dalbandin, Noshki, Panjgor, Gwadar, Turbat and other areas.

    http://www.dawn.com/wps/wcm/connect/dawn-content-library/dawn/news/pakistan/provinces/04-balochistan-strike-bugti-qs-05

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  145. ‘Rescue 1122 complicit in Sialkot murders’
    Thursday, 26 Aug, 2010

    SIALKOT: A member of the team investigating the Sialkot murders has said that the Rescue 1122 staff was involved in the boys’ lynching, television reports said on Thursday.

    DIG Mubashar is a member of the team investigating the case in which two brothers were brutally murdered by a mob in Sialkot.

    The mob attacked them after they were accused of carrying out an armed robbery and committing a murder.

    http://www.dawn.com/wps/wcm/connect/dawn-content-library/dawn/news/pakistan/04-sialkot-murders-rescue1122-qs-06

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  146. PML-N faces pre-unification jitters
    Friday, 27 Aug, 2010

    LAHORE: The Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) is concerned at reports of efforts to unify various factions of the League and revival of dormant religious alliance Mutahidda Majlis-i-Amal (MMA) as the party thinks that the moves are aimed at checking its march to power corridors in the next elections.

    An official of the party says they are viewing the moves as an attempt by certain quarters to divide its traditional vote-bank and rob it of its due share in the parliament.

    http://www.dawn.com/wps/wcm/connect/dawn-content-library/dawn/news/pakistan/44-pml-n-faces-pre-unification-jitters-fa-09

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  147. MQM chief unaware of ground realities: Badar
    Bureau Report
    Friday, 27 Aug, 2010

    HYDERABAD: Central General Secretary of the PPP Senator Jahangir Badar has said that since MQM chief Altaf Hussain is not in the country for the last so many years, he is not fully aware of ground realities in Pakistan.

    He said Pakistan was facing the worst flood of its history and called upon all political and religious parties to unite and face the natural calamity.

    http://www.dawn.com/wps/wcm/connect/dawn-content-library/dawn/the-newspaper/national/mqm-chief-unaware-of-ground-realities-badar-780

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  148. Minister defends decision to avoid cut at Ali Wahan
    Friday, 27 Aug, 2010

    SUKKUR: Federal Minister for Labour Syed Khursheed Ahmed Shah has defended the decision not to breach Ali Wahan bund and said the breach at this point would have caused more damage to Sukkur.

    Addressing a press conference here on Thursday, Mr Shah lashed out at the people who were demanding a breach at Ali Wahan bund to save Sukkur barrage.

    He said that a sinister mud-slinging campaign had been launched against him by vested interests and warned that any attempt to get political mileage out of the catastrophe would prove suicidal.

    http://www.dawn.com/wps/wcm/connect/dawn-content-library/dawn/the-newspaper/national/minister-defends-decision-to-avoid-cut-at-ali-wahan-780

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  149. Tension in Gilgit after sectarian violence
    Friday, 27 Aug, 2010

    GILGIT: After a day of sectarian violence, Gilgit was tense but calm city on Thursday and all major shopping and business centres remained shut. Roads gave a deserted look and attendance in government offices and schools was thin.

    Police arrested 11 suspects in connection with the torching of six houses by a mob near Yadgar chowk on Wednesday. Two policemen have been taken into custody in connection with the murder three days ago of a man who was a ‘Hafiz-i-Quran’.

    http://www.dawn.com/wps/wcm/connect/dawn-content-library/dawn/the-newspaper/front-page/tension-in-gilgit-after-violence-780

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  150. No mid-term elections in the country: Fauzia
    Thursday, 26 Aug, 2010

    ISLAMABAD: Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP) Information Secretary Fauzia Wahab on Thursday said that the PPP government is working for the interest of the poor masses of the country and it would complete its tenure.

    Talking to a private news channel, she said, “there is no situation of mid-term elections in the country. As all the institutions are sincerely working for the welfare of the country,” she added.

    PPP information secretary said the People’s party has a majority in the parliament, adding that’s why there is no question of a mid-term election in the country.

    http://www.dawn.com/wps/wcm/connect/dawn-content-library/dawn/news/pakistan/06-no-mid-term-elections-in-the-country-fauzia-rs-06

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  151. comment: Rumour, rumour, everywhere
    By Cyril Almeida
    Friday, 27 Aug, 2010

    WHEN gossip is your oxygen, expect all sorts of silly rumours to proliferate. And when politics is your national sport, the silliness tends to grow exponentially.

    Like the monster hiding in the cupboard that parents use to scare their children, the government is being warned, ‘Shape up or Kayani will come and eat your dinner’.

    The MQM’s warning to the PPP has been lapped up by conspiracy theorists eager to see the back of the government. This largely because the MQM is seen as the army’s other version of a non-state actor, the one meant to balance out internal ‘threats’ like the PPP. If the MQM is saying it, then something must be up, goes the theory.

    http://www.dawn.com/wps/wcm/connect/dawn-content-library/dawn/the-newspaper/columnists/cyril-almeida-rumour,-rumour,-everywhere-780

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  152. Conflicted Karachi
    BY NADEEM F. PARACHA ON 08 26TH, 2010 | COMMENTS (51)

    Conflict and violence in Karachi has always had its own distinct dynamics, requiring the state and the government of the time to chalk out contingency strategies and security arrangements that are largely customised to suite these exclusive dynamics.

    Though considered to be one of the most crime-infested cities of South Asia, Karachi has baffled a number of political pundits by remaining comparatively stable in the last decade or so – especially in the context of the rise in the number of gruesome terrorist attacks by Islamic extremists in the Punjab and the Khyber-Pukhtunkhwa.

    http://blog.dawn.com/2010/08/26/conflicting-karachi/

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  153. U.S. Against Any Coup in Pakistan
    Irshad Salim
    NEW YORK: The United States will not support any move to impose martial-law in Pakistan, it has emerged. The U.S. policy statement comes in the wake of MQM Chief Altaf Hussain’s demand that the Pakistan military take martial-law type extraordinary steps to establish a corrupt-free regime in the country.
    http://despardes.com/?p=18030

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  154. VIEW: Altaf Hussain’s absurdities —Mohammad Jamil

    The Muttahida Qaumi Movement (MQM) supremo Altaf Hussain has perhaps realised that the MQM’s authority enjoyed during the Ziaul Haq and Musharraf eras has eroded after the February 2008 elections. One could criticise him for having blurted out a preposterous utterance on the grounds that the MQM has been part of almost every government since the 1980s and is responsible, in equal measure, for the status quo — a system that is rotten to the core. Altaf Hussain on the one hand invites honest army generals to remove corrupt politicians and feudal lords, and on the other hand casts aspersions on some generals for misappropriation of funds after the October 2005 earthquake. Whereas Altaf Hussain, being a political animal, should not have invited the army for cleansing the system, one should pose a question to those lambasting him about when has there ever been democracy — a government of the people, for the people and by the people? Always, we have been a plutocracy, an elite rule for the elite and by the elite. That we have been in the past and that is what we are at present. Of course, after a military rule, it is always a change of dress, from the khaki to civilian robes, but the power dispensation stays elitist, privileged and autocratic, with a few hangers-on getting into this exclusive club by hanging on to the coat-tails of the dynasts and their henchmen.

    http://www.dailytimes.com.pk/default.asp?page=2010\08\28\story_28-8-2010_pg3_5

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  155. 28/08/2010
    ANP criticises MQM
    Peshawar, Aug 27 (PTI) The Awami National Party, part of Pakistan”s ruling coalition, today criticised the MQM for calling for “martial law-like action” to tackle corruption, saying the party had always conspired against democracy.

    Senior ANP leader Mian Iftikhar Hussain, who is also Information Minister of Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa province, said the MQM is not a democratic entity and has always conspired against democratic rule to further its own interest.

    http://news.in.msn.com/international/article.aspx?cp-documentid=4315015

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  156. Civilian govt is the best for Pakistan: US
    Dawn Correspondent
    Saturday, 28 Aug, 2010

    WASHINGTON: The United States believes that civilian government is the best for Pakistan, says the State Department while ruling out US support to yet another military coup in the allied nation.

    The statement followed a heated debate in Pakistan stirred by MQM chief Altaf Hussain who said earlier this week that he would back ‘patriotic generals’ if they acted against corrupt politicians and feudal system.

    “Pakistan has a civilian government and we think it is the best form of government to take,” State Department spokesman P. J. Crowley told journalists at his daily news conference.

    http://www.dawn.com/wps/wcm/connect/dawn-content-library/dawn/the-newspaper/national/civilian-govt-is-the-best-for-pakistan-us-880

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  157. Economic decisions taken by cabinet ignored
    By Khaleeq Kiani
    Monday, 30 Aug, 2010

    ISLAMABAD: With the government focussing on political issues, economic decision-making appears to have taken a back seat, leading to non-implementation of key policy initiatives needed to solve severe economic problems.

    Background discussions with officials and economic managers suggest that in many cases major policy decisions taken by Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani have either been overturned by his powerful cabinet colleagues or are not being implemented by government agencies.

    http://www.dawn.com/wps/wcm/connect/dawn-content-library/dawn/the-newspaper/front-page/economic-decisions-taken-by-cabinet-ignored-080

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  158. MQM will never back military rule: Altaf
    Sunday, 29 Aug, 2010

    ISLAMABAD: Confronted with a storm of criticism and in what seemed like a bid to end the ongoing controversy over his remarks in which he had asked for a ‘martial law-like action’ against corrupt politicians, Muttahida Qaumi Movement (MQM) chief Altaf Hussain said on Saturday that his party would never support military rule.

    http://www.dawn.com/wps/wcm/connect/dawn-content-library/dawn/the-newspaper/front-page/mqm-will-never-back-military-rule-altaf-980

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  159. TV channel reporter thrashed in Sialkot lynching
    Monday, 30 Aug, 2010

    SIALKOT: Hafiz Muhammad Imran, a private TV channel reporter who captured the footage of lynching of two brothers on Aug 15, was brutally tortured and injured by some unidentified motorcyclists outside his residence in Ghauspura-Hajipura locality here on Sunday morning.

    The attackers fractured both arms and shoulders of Imran before being thrashed him soundly. They escaped when people gathered there. The injured reporter was rushed to the DHQ Hospital.

    http://www.dawn.com/wps/wcm/connect/dawn-content-library/dawn/the-newspaper/national/lynching-footage-tv-channel-reporter-thrashed-in-sialkot-080

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  160. Ghinwa accuses SPSF workers of attacking her convoy
    Monday, 30 Aug, 2010

    LARKANA: Ghinwa Bhutto, chairperson of PPP-SB, has alleged that activists of the SPSF, the student wing of the ruling PPP, opened fire at her vehicle and those of her supporters near the new bus terminal here on Sunday while she was returning from Khosa village after distributing relief goods.

    http://www.dawn.com/wps/wcm/connect/dawn-content-library/dawn/the-newspaper/national/ghinwa-accuses-spsf-workers-of-attacking-her-convoy-080

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  161. All accused of sialkot case arrested
    Saturday, 28 Aug, 2010

    SIALKOT: Sub-inspector Gulzar Ahmed was arrested on Saturday who has been accused in the Sialkot incident.

    After the arrest of Gulzar Ahmed, now all the 17 suspects that were accused in the FIR for the killing of two brothers in Sialkot have been arrested

    http://www.dawn.com/wps/wcm/connect/dawn-content-library/dawn/news/pakistan/55-all-accused-of-sialkot-case-arrested-sy-02

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  162. Distressed girl seeks government help
    By Our Staff Reporter
    Sunday, 29 Aug, 2010

    LAHORE: A girl of Tajpura locality in Cantonment, who is facing life threats from policemen who have allegedly raped her, has sought protection of life and justice.

    Narrating her ordeal to reporters at the Lahore Press Club on Saturday, Rabia Khan said she had contracted love marriage with Hussain Ejaz on Feb 1 against her parents’ will.
    http://www.dawn.com/wps/wcm/connect/dawn-content-library/dawn/the-newspaper/national/distressed-girl-seeks-govt-help-980

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  163. No fault in Airblue aircraft: Airbus
    By Baqir Sajjad Syed
    Saturday, 28 Aug, 2010

    ISLAMABAD: An analysis of the Black Box of the ill-fated Airblue aircraft which crashed on July 28 has revealed that it had no technical fault at the time of the accident.

    In intimation to A-320 operators across the world, Airbus said there was no need to update the procedures or make fresh recommendations after the ED 202 crash because all flight systems were working normally before the aircraft slammed into the fog-covered mountains.

    http://www.dawn.com/wps/wcm/connect/dawn-content-library/dawn/the-newspaper/front-page/no-fault-in-airblue-aircraft-airbus-880

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  164. SC orders additional HC judges to continue work
    Monday, 30 Aug, 2010

    ISLAMABAD: The Supreme Court on Monday ordered the 32 Additional Judges posted in the High Courts to continue their work, DawnNews reported.

    http://www.dawn.com/wps/wcm/connect/dawn-content-library/dawn/news/pakistan/04-sc-high-court-additional-judges-qs-06

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  165. Supreme Court extends term of 32 judges
    By Nasir Iqbal
    Tuesday, 31 Aug, 2010

    ISLAMABAD: The Supreme Court ordered on Monday extension of the tenure of all 32 additional judges of the four high courts till its final decision on petitions challenging the 18th Amendment. The judges are to complete their one-year term on different dates next month.

    http://www.dawn.com/wps/wcm/connect/dawn-content-library/dawn/the-newspaper/front-page/sc-extends-term-of-32-judges-180

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  166. Seventeen suspects in Sialkot murders’ on remand
    Monday, 30 Aug, 2010

    SIALKOT: The Gujranwala anti-terrorism court handed over 17 suspects to the police for a seven day remand. The suspects are alleged to have been involved in the case of the two brothers, Mughees and Muneeb, who were brutally murdered by a mob in Sialkot.

    http://www.dawn.com/wps/wcm/connect/dawn-content-library/dawn/news/pakistan/provinces/14-seventeen-suspects-in-sialkot-murders-on-remand-zj-05

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  167. Govt decides to convene CCI meeting this week
    By Ahmad Hassan
    Tuesday, 31 Aug, 2010

    ISLAMABAD: The government decided on Monday to convene a meeting of the Council of Common Interests this week to create consensus among the provinces over a mechanism for payment of compensation to people displaced by floods and their rehabilitation.

    http://www.dawn.com/wps/wcm/connect/dawn-content-library/dawn/the-newspaper/front-page/06-govt-decides-to-convene-cci-meeting-this-week-180-rs-07

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  168. SC decision upsets PPP leaders
    By Amir Wasim
    Tuesday, 31 Aug, 2010

    ISLAMABAD: The Supreme Court’s decision of granting extension to additional judges of the high courts has upset some leaders of the ruling Pakistan People’s Party who believe that the party could have resolved the issue through parliament.

    http://www.dawn.com/wps/wcm/connect/dawn-content-library/dawn/the-newspaper/national/06-sc-decision-upsets-ppp-leaders-180-rs-06

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  169. Sindh AG calls for scrapping of Objectives Resolution
    By Our Staff Reporter
    Tuesday, 31 Aug, 2010

    ISLAMABAD: Sindh’s Advocate General Yousuf Leghari surprised the Supreme Court bench hearing challenges to the 18th Amendment in the Constitution on Monday when he said he was against the inclusion of the Objectives Resolution in the 1973 Constitution because it had been made the preamble to the constitution by rightists during the period of a military dictator.

    http://www.dawn.com/wps/wcm/connect/dawn-content-library/dawn/the-newspaper/front-page/06-sindh-ag-calls-for-scrapping-of-objectives-resolution-180-rs-05

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  170. Three more legislators have fake degrees
    By Iftikhar A. Khan
    Tuesday, 31 Aug, 2010
    ISLAMABAD: The Higher Education Commission declared on Monday that degrees of three more legislators were fake.

    http://www.dawn.com/wps/wcm/connect/dawn-content-library/dawn/the-newspaper/national/06-three-more-legislators-have-fake-degrees-180-rs-01

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  171. Collective efforts needed for rehabilitation: Zardari
    Monday, 30 Aug, 2010

    HYDERABAD: President Asif Ali Zardari urged all concerned institutions to work collectively for the rehabilitation of flood affectees.

    http://www.dawn.com/wps/wcm/connect/dawn-content-library/dawn/news/pakistan/12-collective+efforts+needed+for+rehabilitation+zardari+–bi-05

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  172. Absence of local govt felt in coping with crisis
    By Syed Irfan Raza
    Tuesday, 31 Aug, 2010

    ISLAMABAD: When about 2.5 million people were displaced by a massive quake which hit Pakistan’s northern region in 2005, most of the relief and rehabilitation work was shouldered by local governments through a concept of ‘host families’.

    http://www.dawn.com/wps/wcm/connect/dawn-content-library/dawn/the-newspaper/front-page/06-absence-of-local-govt-felt-in-coping-with-crisis-180-rs-09

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  173. Balochistan’s solution is complete autonomy: Zehri
    Monday, 30 Aug, 2010

    ISLAMABAD: Balochistan’s Home minister Mir Zafarullah Zehri said that the provincial government could solve the problem of Balochistan if full autonomy was granted to the province.

    http://www.dawn.com/wps/wcm/connect/dawn-content-library/dawn/news/pakistan/provinces/14-balochistans-solution-is-complete-autonomy-zehri-zj-02

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  174. comment: Pakistan’s human cockroaches – II
    Fasi Zaka
    No apologies. I signed up for the backlash. If you can’t distinguish metaphors in polemics as figurative and not literal, then you are going to be self-serving to include Edhi and Imran Khan’s philanthropy and the good people of this country so you can conveniently ignore the message.
    So again, if you believe all Ahmadis should be killed, all Jews gassed efficiently, all Hindus made slaves, then you can be a Sialkot killer too! Casual prejudice is what creates violence, which is why there are Ahmadi villages in the flood no one wants to help. Or why ‘kafir’ was written on the coffin of a Hindu youth who died in the Airblue plane crash.

    http://tribune.com.pk/story/44487/pakistan%E2%80%99s-human-cockroaches-%E2%80%93-ii/

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  175. comment: The liberal lynch mob
    Mahreen Aziz Khan
    This past week has seen columns, in these very pages, promoting a new brand of hatred – self-hatred – inciting loathing amongst Pakistanis for themselves and their culture. Using the horrific Sialkot killings, these “western, liberal” columnists have labelled all Pakistanis as “degenerates” and “barbaric”, hurling abusive and shameful generalisations to justify a verbal lynching of Pakistan, its culture and people.
    http://tribune.com.pk/story/43452/the-liberal-lynch-mob/

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  176. Official given £6,000 to join golf club
    By Khawar Ghumman
    Wednesday, 01 Sep, 2010

    ISLAMABAD: The Public Accounts Committee of the National Assembly was informed on Tuesday that a bureaucrat posted at the country’s consulate general in Manchester had used official funds to secure the membership of a local golf club in 2007.

    The membership cost the public exchequer 6,000 pounds.

    Mr Hamid (his full name was not mentioned at the meeting) not only managed to win the post of commercial secretary, but also got approval for his club membership from then commerce minister Humayun Akhtar Khan whom he had earlier served as staff officer.

    http://www.dawn.com/wps/wcm/connect/dawn-content-library/dawn/the-newspaper/front-page/official-given-6,000-to-join-golf-club-190

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  177. ‘PM’s role in judges’ selection curtailed’
    By Nasir Iqbal
    Wednesday, 01 Sep, 2010

    ISLAMABAD: Attorney General Maulvi Anwarul Haq told the Supreme Court on Tuesday that the prime minister had no role in appointment of superior court judges because the 18th Amendment had transferred the authority to an eight-member parliamentary committee.

    http://www.dawn.com/wps/wcm/connect/dawn-content-library/dawn/the-newspaper/front-page/06-pms-role-in-judges-selection-curtailed-190-rs-04

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  178. Lynched brothers were not criminals: inquiry
    By Nasir Iqbal
    Thursday, 02 Sep, 2010

    ISLAMABAD: Justice (retd) Kazim Malik who investigated the case of two brothers lynched by a mob in Sialkot on Aug 15 has said in his report that the boys were not robbers or hardened criminals and not a single case of mobile phone snatching or robbery was ever reported against them.

    The sealed report was opened on Wednesday before a Supreme Court bench.

    http://www.dawn.com/wps/wcm/connect/dawn-content-library/dawn/the-newspaper/front-page/06-lynched-brothers-were-not-criminals-inquiry-290-rs-06

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  179. Pakistan Rejects NYT Report, Insists No Chinese Troops In Region
    AHN News Staff
    Islamabad, Pakistan (AHN) – Pakistan’s ambassador to China, Masood Khan, has vehemently brushed off a New York Times report that Islamabad has handed to China control of the Gilgit-Baltistan area of Pakistan-occupied Kashmir.
    http://www.allheadlinenews.com/articles/7019765006

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  180. China refutes reports of sending troops to Pakistan
    BEIJING, Sept. 1 (Xinhua) — China on Wednesday rejected reports of the presence of over 11,000 Chinese troops in northern Pakistan, saying that such “groundless reports” were made with “ulterior motives.”
    http://news.xinhuanet.com/english2010/china/2010-09/01/c_13473895.htm

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  181. Pakistan military group cancels U.S. visit after airport questioning
    From Brian Todd and Dugald McConnell, CNN
    September 2, 2010 — Updated 0238 GMT (1038 HKT)

    Washington (CNN) — A delegation of Pakistani military officials decided to cancel a meeting this week with U.S. military officials in protest after they were taken off a plane and questioned at Washington’s Dulles International Airport, according to a Pakistani official.
    The nine-member delegation, including brigadier generals and at least one two-star navy admiral, were bound for a meeting at the U.S. military’s Central Command at MacDill Air Force Base in Tampa, Florida.

    http://edition.cnn.com/2010/WORLD/asiapcf/09/01/us.pakistan.military.protest/?hpt=T2#fbid=a0ZWr9P7Ueb&wom=false

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  182. Pakistan military abandons US trips after being ‘mistaken for terrorists’
    A delegation of Pakistani military officers has abandoned a trip to the US after being mistaken for terrorists and ordered off an airliner.

    By Rob Crilly in Islamabad
    Published: 4:55PM BST 01 Sep 2010

    The eight officers, led by a two-star Navy rear admiral, were on their way to a meeting at US Central Command.
    They had boarded a United Airlines Flight from Washington to Tampa on Monday but were taken off the aircraft because of comments made by one of the men, according to an airline spokesman.

    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldnews/asia/pakistan/7975392/Pakistan-military-abandons-US-trips-after-being-mistaken-for-terrorists.html

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  183. Pakistan army cancels US trip amid search dispute
    By CHRIS BRUMMITT (AP) – 15 hours ago
    ISLAMABAD — Pakistan’s military canceled a trip by officers to an annual meeting at U.S. Central Command after they were taken off a plane and subjected to “unwarranted security checks” at Dulles International Airport in Washington, a spokesman said Wednesday.

    http://www.google.com/hostednews/ap/article/ALeqM5hh9AAzOqkU7A45k8loQvvLC46EIAD9HV691G0

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  184. Pakistan militants kill 35 despite floods
    By BABAR DOGAR (AP) – 1 hour ago
    LAHORE, Pakistan — The triple bombing of a religious procession in Pakistan adds to the strains on a government already struggling with devastating floods and shows that Islamist militants are back in business despite the natural disaster.
    The death toll in the blasts rose to 35 on Thursday, with about 250 injured, government official Sajjad Bhutta said.

    http://www.google.com/hostednews/ap/article/ALeqM5hkiMxbHNH0BqgpWA2ZG6VD6wVTmAD9HVIPOG0

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  185. Turkmen, Pakistani presidents pledge pipeline summit
    Wednesday, 01 Sep, 2010

    ASHGABAT: The leaders of Turkmenistan and Pakistan have called for a top-level summit to revive a stalled project to build a natural gas pipeline from the ex-Soviet state to the east, state media said Wednesday.
    Ashgabat and Islamabad agreed in 2002 to build a 1,700 kilometre (1,060 mile) pipeline to deliver Turkmen gas to Pakistan and India via Afghanistan but the project has stalled because of the conflict with the Taliban.
    http://www.dawn.com/wps/wcm/connect/dawn-content-library/dawn/news/pakistan/44-pakistan-denies-giving-gilgit-baltistan-to-china-fa-08

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  186. Kerosene and diesel prices increased
    By Our Staff Reporter
    Wednesday, 01 Sep, 2010

    ISLAMABAD: The Oil and Gas Regulatory Authority (Ogra) increased on Tuesday prices of three petroleum products — kerosene, high speed diesel and light diesel oil — by up to 2.2 per cent and reduced by 0.7 per cent the prices of petrol and high octane blending component (HOBC).

    http://www.dawn.com/wps/wcm/connect/dawn-content-library/dawn/the-newspaper/front-page/kerosene-and-diesel-prices-increased-190

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  187. Objectives Resolution
    Dawn Editorial
    Thursday, 02 Sep, 2010

    During a Supreme Court hearing on Monday regarding challenges to the 18th Amendment, the Sindh advocate general, Yousuf Leghari, called for the deletion of the Objectives Resolution from the constitution, arguing that it had been incorporated in a dubious manner during a period of military dictatorship. It is difficult not to concur with Mr Leghari since the manner in which the Objectives Resolution currently forms a substantive part of the constitution has led to legal confusion.
    http://www.dawn.com/wps/wcm/connect/dawn-content-library/dawn/the-newspaper/editorial/objectives-resolution-290

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  188. comment: Get another passport
    by Syed Talat Hussain
    As if the ravages of the floods, the incompetence of the government, and the shenanigans surrounding cricket were not bad enough, there is an additional cause of national depression: a group — ‘Kondemn the whole Kommunity Klan’, or the KKK — is actively pushing the narrative that Pakistan is a failed state because this nation, culturally, does not have the attributes of a successful civilisation.
    http://tribune.com.pk/story/44918/get-another-passport/

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  189. Grief, anger mark National Assembly session
    By Raja Asghar
    Friday, 03 Sep, 2010

    ISLAMABAD: Outbursts of grief and anger over natural and man-made disasters marked the opening of a session of the National Assembly requisitioned by the opposition on Thursday, but the main agenda for a debate on flood devastation was put off for a day to mourn a minister’s death.

    http://www.dawn.com/wps/wcm/connect/dawn-content-library/dawn/the-newspaper/front-page/grief,-anger-mark-na-session-390

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  190. Altaf urges army to help people bring about revolution
    By Azfar-ul-Ashfaque
    Friday, 03 Sep, 2010

    KARACHI: Reiterating his stance that the country needs a revolution similar to that of the French Revolution, Muttahida Qaumi Movement chief Altaf Hussain has asked the Pakistan army and the country’s “establishment” to support the masses that, he said, are compelled to bring about a “change” to weed out corruption and feudal system.

    http://www.dawn.com/wps/wcm/connect/dawn-content-library/dawn/the-newspaper/local/06-altaf-urges-army,-establishment-to-help-people-bring-about-revolution-390-rs-07

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  191. comment: Questions, questions, questions
    By Cyril Almeida
    Friday, 03 Sep, 2010

    As the carnage and destruction, both manmade and nature’s wrath, around us continue, it’s hard to figure out what to do. Or even what to figure out.

    Curl up in the foetal position and hope that this too shall pass? Attempt somehow, anyhow to understand why this is happening to us? If the latter, there are so many strands, where do you begin? Militants, the economy, politics? If militants, then which kind, the sectarian or the pan-Islamic?

    Is the state collapsing? Or are still-born state-building processes finally catching up with us, inevitably proving that only shrinking pockets can be kept governable? Is this an economy of an elitist state or are we a national security state where the concentration of wealth is incidental?

    http://www.dawn.com/wps/wcm/connect/dawn-content-library/dawn/the-newspaper/columnists/cyril-almeida-questions,-questions,-questions-390

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  192. By-elections underway in NA-184
    Saturday, 04 Sep, 2010

    BAHAWALPUR: Polling for Bahawalpur’s NA-184 started at 8:00 am Saturday, DawnNews reported.

    NA-184 fell vacant after the resignation of Pakistan People’s Party’s Amir Yar Waran.

    http://www.dawn.com/wps/wcm/connect/dawn-content-library/dawn/news/pakistan/04-na-184-by-elections-qs-01

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  193. I am ready to come back for revolution: Altaf
    Sunday, 05 Sep, 2010

    KARACHI: MQM’s leader Altaf Hussain said on Sunday that he was willing to come back to Pakistan in order to bring revolution.

    Speaking at the Khidmat-e-Khalq foundation over telephone, Altaf said that if the provinces were ready for the revolution they should speak to Rabta Committee and remove all restrictions against him.

    http://www.dawn.com/wps/wcm/connect/dawn-content-library/dawn/news/pakistan/metropolitan/44-i-am-ready-to-come-back-for-revolution-altaf+-fa-10

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  194. PPP candidate sails through NA-184 bypolls
    By Maeed Gill
    Sunday, 05 Sep, 2010

    BAHAWALPUR: PPP candidate Khadeeja Aamir Warren has won the NA-184 by-polls after defeating PML-N candidate Mian Najeeb-ud-Din Owaisi by a margin of around 27,000 votes.

    According to unofficial results, Khadeeja had secured around 75,000 votes and Owaisi 48,000 votes while results from a few polling stations were still to come.

    http://www.dawn.com/wps/wcm/connect/dawn-content-library/dawn/the-newspaper/national/ppp-candidate-sails-through-na184-bypolls-590

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  195. Judicial appointment process under fire
    By Cyril Almeida
    Sunday, 05 Sep, 2010

    ISLAMABAD: As the appointment of superior court judges proposed in the 18th Amendment came under harsh scrutiny from the Supreme Court all week, legal experts believe the outcome of the hearings, which began in the last week of May, is beginning to take shape.

    Over the course of the last three months, and particularly in the last week, comments and questions from the bench indicate marked displeasure with Article 175-A, which spells out the new appointment procedure for High Court and Supreme Court judges.

    http://www.dawn.com/wps/wcm/connect/dawn-content-library/dawn/the-newspaper/front-page/judicial-appointment-process-under-fire-590

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  196. Journalist kidnapped, tortured by 12 men
    Sunday, 05 Sep, 2010

    ISLAMABAD: A journalist was kidnapped and released here on Saturday by a group of 12 men who subjected him to torture and shaved his head.

    The journalist, Omar Cheema of The News, told Dawn he suspected that an intelligence agency was behind the episode.

    Two vehicles, a Land Cruiser and a Toyota Corolla, intercepted him near Kachnar Park in I-8/3 at 3.30 in the morning, he said, adding that 12 men got off the vehicles and surrounded him.

    http://www.dawn.com/wps/wcm/connect/dawn-content-library/dawn/the-newspaper/front-page/journalist-kidnapped%2C-tortured-590

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  197. comment: Denialistan
    By Anas Abbas

    This Essay is in response to an article “The liberal lynch mob” written by Mahreen Aziz Khan published recently in The Express Tribune. It will not only focus on this article itself but will mostly critically analyze the mindset behind such viewpoints and briefly look at the message in other such related articles for example “Get another passport” written by the famous “Flotilla Hulk”.

    Recently a horrifying video of a crowd watching a mob brutally killing two brothers in Sialkot has sparked mass demonstrations in Pakistan. The video, widely broadcasted on Pakistani TV channels, shows a lynch mob taking turns to savagely beat the two boys with sticks, metal rods drawing blood from them before dragging and hanging their dead bodies from a nearby pole. But perhaps just as shocking was that none of the dozens of people including police officials watching tried to stop the ferocious attack. The government has responded to the attack by promising to launch an investigation and bringing the culprits to justice. Civil/Religious groups and Media condemned the killings and youth held demonstrations. The scenes have outraged Pakistanis all over the country challenging how their society could submissively watch the shocking killings without intervening.

    http://aacounterterror.wordpress.com/2010/09/02/the-denial-of-the-lambs-by-anas-abbas%EF%BB%BF/

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  198. PM Gilani pays homage to heroes of September 6
    Monday, 06 Sep, 2010

    ISLAMABAD: Prime Minister Syed Yousuf Raza Gilani on Monday renewed his government’s pledge to make Pakistan a strong and invincible country by inculcating unity, faith and discipline in lives of Pakistani people.
    In a message on Pakistan’s Defence Day, Gilani said that September 6 was a red letter day in the history of Pakistan, when the armed forces with solid support of people exhibited extraordinary valor in grave threats to the country.

    http://www.dawn.com/wps/wcm/connect/dawn-content-library/dawn/news/pakistan/03-pm-gilani-pays-homage-to-heroes-of-september-6-ss-01

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  199. Besides floods, CCI may also discuss 18th Amendment
    By Khawar Ghumman and Ahmad Hassan
    Monday, 06 Sep, 2010

    ISLAMABAD: Besides deliberating on the challenges thrown up by the floods, the government intends to use the platform of Council of Common Interests (CCI) to also discuss various issues in the 18th Amendment which have been challenged in the Supreme Court, according to sources.

    The CCI, which is headed by the prime minister, is meeting here on Monday mainly to discuss issues related to the flood. The chief executives of the provinces, Azad Kashmir and Gilgit-Baltistan will present their estimates of losses caused by the flood.

    http://www.dawn.com/wps/wcm/connect/dawn-content-library/dawn/the-newspaper/front-page/besides-floods,-cci-may-also-discuss-18th-amendment-690

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  200. Tax proposed to cope with flood crisis
    By Shamim-ur-Rahman
    Monday, 06 Sep, 2010

    KARACHI: President Asif Ali Zardari proposed on Sunday that a one-time flood tax be levied on urban property and agricultural land not affected by the flood.

    http://www.dawn.com/wps/wcm/connect/dawn-content-library/dawn/the-newspaper/front-page/urban-property,-unaffected-farmland-to-pay-onetime-cess-tax-proposed-to-cope-with-flood-crisis-690

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  201. Sialkot accused sent on three-day-long remand
    Monday, 06 Sep, 2010

    LAHORE: An Anti-Terrorism Court on Monday handed over the 18 accused of the Sialkot lynching case to police for a three-day-long physical remand.

    http://www.dawn.com/wps/wcm/connect/dawn-content-library/dawn/news/pakistan/04-sialkot-accused-sent-on-remand-qs-07

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  202. Jaffarabad flooded to save airbase: Jamali
    By Our Staff Correspondent
    Monday, 06 Sep, 2010

    DERA MURAD JAMALI: Former prime minister Mir Zafarullah Khan Jamali has said he will approach the Supreme Court on the issue of the Tori embankment breach which has inundated Jaffarabad district.

    “I am consulting my lawyers to file a petition in the apex court, making all those party who are responsible for breaching the Tori dyke,” he told this correspondent.

    http://www.dawn.com/wps/wcm/connect/dawn-content-library/dawn/the-newspaper/national/jaffarabad-flooded-to-save-airbase-jamali

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  203. Fafen sees irregularities in NA-184 by-polls
    By Amir Wasim
    Monday, 06 Sep, 2010

    ISLAMABAD: Suspicious voting patterns, ballot stamping by unauthorised people and heavy police presence inside polling stations marked the by-election held on Saturday for a National Assembly seat from Bahawalpur, says a report of a group of independent election monitors released here on Sunday.

    http://www.dawn.com/wps/wcm/connect/dawn-content-library/dawn/the-newspaper/national/bahawalpur-byelection-fafen-sees-irregularities-at-polling-station-690

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  204. Economy on the edge of precipice, says minister
    By Khaleeq Kiani
    Monday, 06 Sep, 2010

    ISLAMABAD: Finance Minister Dr Hafeez Sheikh has made an impassioned appeal to the federal and provincial governments and military authorities to demonstrate highest level of fiscal responsibility in order to avert a ‘complete economic breakdown’.

    http://www.dawn.com/wps/wcm/connect/dawn-content-library/dawn/the-newspaper/front-page/economy-on-the-edge-of-precipice,-says-minister-690

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  205. CCI to ensure transparent distribution of relief funds
    By Ahmad Hassan
    Tuesday, 07 Sep, 2010

    ISLAMABAD: The Council of Common Interests (CCI) has said it will become a ‘credible face’ of the government and take all policy decisions for reconstruction and rehabilitation of the flood-affected areas and equitable and transparent distribution of funds.

    http://www.dawn.com/wps/wcm/connect/dawn-content-library/dawn/the-newspaper/front-page/cci-to-ensure-transparent-distribution-of-relief-funds-790

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  206. Zardari asks DFIs, finance companies to devise plan
    By Shamim-ur-Rahman
    Tuesday, 07 Sep, 2010

    KARACHI: President Asif Ali Zardari on Monday called upon investment finance companies and development finance institutions (DFIs) to devise a plan for raising money through stock exchanges for building infrastructure projects in the country on build, operate, own and transfer (BOOT) basis or on the basis of build, operate and own (BOO).

    http://www.dawn.com/wps/wcm/connect/dawn-content-library/dawn/the-newspaper/front-page/raising-money-for-infrastructure-projects-zardari-asks-dfis,-finance-companies-to-devise-plan-790

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  207. Only president can sack me: NAB official
    By Syed Irfan Raza
    Tuesday, 07 Sep, 2010

    ISLAMABAD: A fresh row appears to be brewing up between the judiciary and the government as National Accountability Bureau’s Prosecutor General Irfan Qadir, whose removal had been ordered by the Supreme Court last week, stated on Monday that he would continue to hold his post till a removal order was issued by the president.

    http://www.dawn.com/wps/wcm/connect/dawn-content-library/dawn/the-newspaper/front-page/only-president-can-sack-me-nab-official-790

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  208. Economy: on the verge of collapse?
    Dawn Editorial
    Tuesday, 07 Sep, 2010

    Finance Minister Hafeez Sheikh’s warning to officials of the state, delivered in a sombre meeting late last month, could not be clearer: the government, federal and provincial, is on the verge of financial collapse. So dire is the state of affairs that the government may not have money to pay salaries in a few months. Lest this be dismissed as hyperbole, Mr Sheikh’s comments have been echoed privately by many economists and experts familiar with state finances in recent weeks. In fact, if anything the finance minister’s comments are on the more optimistic side of dire.

    http://www.dawn.com/wps/wcm/connect/dawn-content-library/dawn/the-newspaper/editorial/economy-on-the-verge-of-collapse-790

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  209. Evading Reform?
    by Shujaat Ali Khan on 09 7th, 2010 | Comments (5)
    Recently, there have been talks about a one-time ‘flood tax’ being considered by the Government of Pakistan. If approved, among other measures, it would entail increasing the income tax bill of individuals whose annual income exceeds Rs. 300,000 by 10 per cent. The tax is essential for providing the government with the required revenues to undertake reconstruction projects and to facilitate the desperately needed income redistribution, which is necessitated by the ever growing income divide between the rich and the poor. However, in face of a monumental crisis, does this measure in itself have the capacity to achieve these goals? More importantly, in the midst of the current crisis, is this a step in the right direction or is it just another short-term relief measure that would allow the government to evade the much needed tax reforms? To answer these questions one has to understand the economic implications of taxes.

    http://blog.dawn.com/2010/09/07/evading-reform/

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  210. Nawaz losing grip on his party: Babar Awan
    Tuesday, 07 Sep, 2010

    KARACHI: Federal Minister for Law and Parliamentary Affairs Babar Awan on Tuesday said that the Pakistan Muslim League – Nawaz had dual standards of politics, and that PML-N chief Nawaz Sharif was now losing his grip on his party.

    http://www.dawn.com/wps/wcm/connect/dawn-content-library/dawn/news/pakistan/04-babar-nawaz-qs-07

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  211. Last accused of Sialkot incident arrested
    Tuesday, 07 Sep, 2010

    SIALKOT: DPO Sialkot Bilal Siddique Kamyana confirmed on Tuesday that the last nominated accused in the Sialkot lynching incident, ASI Waris Ali, has been arrested in Lahore.

    http://www.dawn.com/wps/wcm/connect/dawn-content-library/dawn/news/pakistan/03-last-accused-of-sialkot-incident-arrested-ss-04

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  212. Attacks in Pakistan reaction to army’s success: Qureshi
    Tuesday, 07 Sep, 2010

    LISBON: The recent wave of attacks in Pakistan are a reaction to the success of the army’s anti-terror operations, foreign minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi said Monday during a visit to Portugal.

    http://www.dawn.com/wps/wcm/connect/dawn-content-library/dawn/news/pakistan/19-attacks-in-pakistan-reaction-to-armys-success-qureshi-hh-01

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  213. Attack on journalist
    Dawn Editorial
    Tuesday, 07 Sep, 2010

    No half-hearted police measures or words of consolation from the highest offices in the land will suffice in the aftermath of the brutal treatment meted out to journalist Umar Cheema of The News. This paper’s stand is clear: the government and its intelligence agencies will be considered guilty until they can prove their innocence. Yes, Mr Cheema wrote pieces that were highly critical of the government, and in particular the presidency. Was it for that reason that he was kidnapped, stripped naked and filmed, hung upside down, had his hair and moustache shaved and beaten relentlessly for hours on end?

    http://www.dawn.com/wps/wcm/connect/dawn-content-library/dawn/the-newspaper/editorial/attack-on-journalist-790

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