Saturday, May 14, 2011

Sovereignty and accountability of Pakistan

The bad news is that “Operation Geronimo” of May 2, 2011, is the worst debacle for the Pakistani military establishment since the misadventure at Kargil in 1999. It has seriously shaken the confidence and belief of the nation in and for itself. The good news is that it may yet help tilt the civil-military imbalance towards an elected civilian parliament that is conscious of the urgent need to review and amend the “national security paradigm” that has been monopolized by the military since partition and is responsible for many of our problems. Consider.

The nation is awash with untenable and absurd conspiracy theories, mostly anti-American. This is a reflection of our impotence in the face of facts and our rage at being confronted with an unpalatable truth. Both the truth and the facts humiliate us by showing up our national and institutional weaknesses and compel us to manufacture delusional fictions to comfort ourselves. If Abbottabad was a “drama” enacted by the Americans for various reasons, if there was no Osama bin Laden in the compound, then we must also accept that the Pakistani military establishment was fully involved in the “drama”. It is the ISI that has told us, on the basis of the evidence of the three widows of OBL in its care, that OBL had lived in the compound for six years and was killed by the US Navy seals who stormed the compound last Monday – in which case we should ask for explanations and accountability at home from the military instead of fuming against the Americans as co-conspirators.

Much the same mass delusion and intellectual hypocrisy is attached to arguments about how America has “violated our sovereignty” in the OBL case. Of course, they have. But the drones “violate” it every week on the basis of secret rules of engagement agreed upon with the Americans many years ago by the Pakistani military high command that are still in play. The media knows this but doesn’t want to ask the military to explain it. Further, our sovereignty has truly been violated by the Afghan Taliban and Al Qaeda foreign intruders in safe havens in Waziristan. To add injury to insult, these terrorists have killed over 35,000 Pakistanis in the last five years. But no one is focused on the existential threat to Pakistan from them. Indeed, stupid arguments are given that once the Americans leave Afghanistan these terrorists will simply vanish, ignoring their proclaimed mission statement to overthrow the state and constitution of Pakistan. Note also that anti-American terrorists like Ramzi Yusuf, Aimal Kansi, Khalid Sheikh Mohammad, Umer Sheikh, and dozens of others conspired to harm America from the soil of Pakistan long before 9/11.

The fact also is that our “sovereignty” was sold to America when our civil-military bureaucracy entered into unequal military pacts with the US in the 1950s, when it offered Pakistan as a “front-line” state for America in its war against the USSR when the rest of the post-colonial world was cobbling an autonomous “non-aligned movement”, when it sold our sufi soul to various jihadi organisations sponsored (as the modern-day equivalents of “America’s founding fathers” as per President Ronald Reagan) and paid for by America in Afghanistan. The civil-military bureaucracy hoodwinked Pakistanis by flogging it as a sovereign sale to “friends, not masters”. In the latest post 9/11 era, the US has paid $18 billion to Pakistan for buying into its “sovereignty” under General Pervez Musharraf and it is no surprise that much of this money has gone to replenish the Pakistani military or to line the pockets of usurpers.

Meanwhile, the military has fashioned a national security doctrine to suit its manufacture of a national security state. This is based on a “palpable and continuing threat from India” to undo Pakistan. In its latest formulation, the threat is supposed to emanate from India’s “capacity” to harm Pakistan rather than its intentions to make peace, which is a recipe for an arms race and not an antidote to war. It is true that India’s Hindu ruling elites were initially averse to the idea of Pakistan and hostile to the new country. They were also unfair in denying Kashmir to Pakistan. But since the acquisition of nuclear weapons by Pakistan, the deterrent has worked to obliterate any existential threat to Pakistan from India. The 1999 Lahore summit between the civilian political leaders of both countries was a confirmation of this new reality. Unfortunately, however, the military has become so obsessed with the idea of itself as the sole protector and saviour of Pakistan, a corollary of which is its continuing demand for constantly rising “defense” budgets and monopoly in foreign policy making, that it is not ready to open up its national security doctrine for discussion, debate and re-evaluation in the light of new economic, political and regional realities. This, despite the fact of disastrous military policy making in 1965 (Operation Gibraltar, that provoked war with India), in 1971 (war with India that dismembered Pakistan), in 1984 (loss of Siachin), in the 1980s (warlike tensions with India over Pakistan’s support to the Khalistan movement), in the Afghan jihad (whose militant Islamism blowback has crippled

Pakistani culture and politics), in the 1990s Kashmir jihad (that has wiped out a generation of Kashmiris and created jihadi militias in Pakistan without yielding Kashmir), in the 1999 Kargil conflict (that led to a military defeat and the overthrow of a democratically elected government), and now gross incompetence or complicity in shielding OBL.

If 9/11 was a wake-up call for America, this may be a defining moment for Pakistan. At stake is not the uneasy US-Pak relationship which yields billions of dollars for renting a part of our sovereignty to America but the domestic civil-military imbalance that has deformed the nature of civil society and crippled the economy, and the war against the non-state actors and terrorists who have usurped our sovereignty and are threatening to propel us into a suicidal conflict with the US and India.

To be sure, Pakistan must retain robust military defense preparedness not only against an overarching and arrogant India but also against a potentially destablising Afghan state that is in the making (the US envisages a 250,000 strong Afghan army in a couple of years led by Tajik-Uzbek elements of the Northern Alliance that have traditionally been anti-Pakistan). But the way to protect ourselves is to build trust and peace and trade and interdependence with our neighbours like India and Afghanistan and Iran and allies like America and the EU instead of trying to weaken or leverage them by internal and external state and non-state provocations as we have done in the past. “Sovereignty” is not abstract or absolute. It is a realistic function of power. Power is also not absolute or abstract. It is relative to the demonstrated power of others, singly or in groups. Power is also related to economic autarky and prosperity. Finally power is related to the social contract between a people and its rulers via a consensus constitution in which elected civilian parliaments are supreme.

Some civilians in Pakistan are beginning to understand this logic and are demanding serious accountability of their elected and appointed leaders. Nawaz Sharif has taken a statesmanlike lead in this matter by asking for a judicial commission to probe the May 2 debacle and fix responsibility. He is right in saying that that there can be no confidence in the military holding itself accountable as proposed by the Prime Minister. But this accountability should not just be of some civil-military leaders who have been hoist by their own petard in current circumstances. Nor should it be a knee-jerk reaction to the bullying of the US. It should be a rigorous and sustained accountability of rigid self-serving institutional doctrines that have propelled Pakistan into an unsustainable arms race with India and are seeking to control Afghanistan, that want to leverage terrorist non-state actors against America. We must also right the delusional mass mindsets that ill-serve Pakistan’s economy and polity in this day and age.

Thursday, April 28, 2011

Pakistan Politics Big Game

Faces in Pakistan Politics
Political engineering is the name of the game. There is news of two parallel developments that will shape the nature of politics in the run-up to the next election and possibly after it. The first is a strategic decision by the PMLQ and PPP to join hands as coalition partners in Islamabad this month and electoral allies next year; the second is a strategic decision by the military to cobble an electoral alliance comprising Imran Khan’s PTI, the “Like-Minded” breakaway rump of the PML-Q, Gen Pervez Musharraf’s APML, JI, MQM and JUI. All this jockeying for power makes sense.

The PPP is sick to death of the constantly blackmailing tactics of the MQM and JUI. They’re in and out of the coalition every other day. With the budget two months away, President Asif Zardari can’t afford to take any chances in the numbers game. Failure would amount to a vote of no-confidence and curtains for his government. So he needs a stable partner who’s out in the cold and desperate to climb into bed with him. The PMLQ fits the bill nicely. It has as many MNAs to offer as the MQM and JUI combined. But not perfectly, because it was the “Qatil” League only three years ago after Mr Zardari accused it of murdering Benazir Bhutto. It is also a good electoral partner to have in the Punjab where it will eat into the anti-PPP vote bank targeted by Nawaz Sharif’s PMLN and the PTI-led alliance that is in the offing. In a three way fight, the PPP-PMLQ alliance with creative seat adjustments – on the basis of the new population census which will significantly change the constituency landscape – has a great chance of bumping off its rivals in many hotly contested constituencies.

The PMLQ’s leaders, Chaudhry Pervez Elahi and Chaudry Shujaat, have barely managed to hold their own in the face of raids on their uneasy MNAs by the PMLN in Punjab. Abandoned by the military after General Musharraf’s exit, they need to clutch at someone’s coattails for survival. The PPP under Mr Zardari is as pragmatic as it can get, which suits the Chaudhries and all those old and new Muslim Leaguers who can’t stomach Nawaz Sharif’s autocratic ways or fear his vindictive tendencies. Imran Khan’s anti-corruption, anti-establishment, revolutionary rhetoric is not palatable either. And since Mr Zardari has clarified that his reference to the “Qatil” League was aimed at General Musharraf and not the Chaudhries – which is why Gen Musharraf is in the dock for the murder of Benazir Bhutto and not the Chaudhries – the route is open for their alliance.

This PPP-PMLQ alliance will be based on a detailed MOU about key issues of policy and power-sharing during crunch times ahead. Among these are budgetary proposals, AF-Pak and Pak-US relations, local body elections, seat adjustments, allocation of funds for MNAs and MPAs, allotment of ministries and advisorships, etc. The inevitable disgruntlement in their respective ranks and files will have to be handled effectively.

The military is backing Imran Khan as a spoiler. He is popular with young people. His problem is a lack of organizational ability to pull the voter out. But the ISI is a past master at creating parties and cobbling alliances – PNA, IJI, MMA – with a view to ensuring that no party gets such a majority that its leaders run amuck and break loose from their masters in GHQ, as happened with Mohammad Khan Junejo in 1987-88 and Nawaz Sharif 1999. So if Imran Khan & Co can split the vote and stop the PMLN from galloping past the poll, or the PPP from getting out of hand, the military’s objectives will be well served. One way to keep the civil-military imbalance tilted in its favour is to keep the civilians divided and disorganized.

All this leaves Nawaz Sharif in the lurch. If he pre-empts these moves by trying to oust the Zardari regime by joining hands with the MQM and JUI, he risks being sidelined by a third force comprising the judges, media and military which is rooting for a quasi-constitutional technocratic regime instead of him. If he bides his time, the PPP-PMLQ budding alliance will blossom to his disadvantage when the elections roll around.

The hard budget in June will test everyone’s nerves. The PPP and PMLQ will have to shoulder the burden of public hostility. An election soon thereafter could prove to be their death-knell. So they will want to keep the government and alliance going the full hog until Feb 2014, enabling them to live to fight a better day.

By the same measure, however, Nawaz Sharif and Imran Khan & Co will find no better opportunity than budget time to gird their loins for a final Heave-Ho and early election.

The X factor remains the Supreme Court. It has the capacity to upset the Chaudhry’s cart by derailing the political career of Moonis Elahi. It also seems intent on knocking Mr Zardari and his government. This is ominous. If there is gridlock between the executive and judiciary, the anti-American media and anti-politician military will become the arbiters of Pakistan’s fate. In the event, Pakistan’s fledgling democracy and ailing economy will suffer an epileptic fit again.

Monday, April 4, 2011

Win-win situation

Before the match, the weight of history was with the side batting first which has won in 72 per cent of all matches played at Mohali. The experts and bookies had also tilted in India’s favour. It had a better batting line-up, half a dozen players were firing on all cylinders, captain MS Dhoni was tried and tested for Tests, ODIs and 20/20s. The Indian cricketers were also playing before a highly charged and partisan home crowd. Pakistan, by contrast, was just beginning to shrug off the burden of shame and demoralization after the match-fixing scandal in England last year that laid three of its most talented players low, captain Shahid Afridi had a spotty record, and the youngsters were not fully groomed. Indeed, it was remarkable that they had beaten giant-killers like Australia and the West Indies to inch their way to the top.

In the heat and dust of battle, however, two key facts have been overlooked in Pakistan. 

  • First, the better performing and more professional Indian “team” won by using its brains and not brawn. This is largely a consequence of a developing Indian (not Hindu) mindset based on the mundane but fierce aspirations of an upwardly mobile, educated, secular, middle-class that is billing itself not only as an organized, disciplined and reliable engine of economic and cultural growth but also as a most attractive emerging market with disposable money in an increasingly flat world. This is in stark contrast to Pakistan in which the state is riddled with problems of identity (Muslim or Pakistani) and notions of national interest (honour versus interests), and Pakistanis are consequently grappling with multiple crises of economy, culture, education, integration and cohesion. This is a recipe for pride and passion in all aspects of life and sport, not professionalism and principle. Interesting, the other cricket match finalist is another secular South Asian country, Sri Lanka, which has nearly 100 per cent literacy, a high economic growth rate and has just won a civil war to unite the country and make it strong and unified. Both ambitious-country examples prove that while individual talent is a necessary condition for sporting success, the sufficient condition is provided by strong nationalist motivation based on a realistic sense of economic destiny and political confidence that stresses the role of unity, discipline and professionalism rather than faith or the hand of Providence alone in determining fate or destiny.
  • Second, the cricketing encounter has opened up the possibility of serious discussions about “permanent peace” between India and Pakistan. 
    • There are five main reasons for this initiative. 
      • First, Dr Manmohan Singh’s government is dogged by charges of corruption and mismanagement and is weaker today than at any time before. Personally, too, he is at the fag end of his political career without having made any great mark of distinction. So now was a good time to take a more inspiring initiative and invite the leaders of Pakistan to smoke the “permanent peace” pipe at Mohali, especially since the odds were heavily tilted in favour of an Indian victory.
      • Second, India’s investigations into the Samjhota Express bombing case in which 47 Pakistani were killed have revealed the hand of Hindu extremists in India rather than Islamic hardliners in Pakistan. This gives Pakistan a fillip in countering India’s charge of sponsoring terrorism against Pakistan. 
      • Third, the Indian courts have convicted Ajmal Kasab but acquitted two Indian Muslims of links with the Pakistan-based Lashkar-e-Tayba leader Hafiz Saeed, thereby debunking the claims of India’s National Security Advisor MK Narayanan that all three were taking orders from Mr Saeed. This too has weakened India’s charge-sheet against Pakistan’s ISI. 
      • Fourth, India’s quest for a permanent Security Council seat at the UN requires it to be reasonable and responsible by at least mending fences with its neighbours, especially nuclear-armed Pakistan.
      • Fifth, a continuation of India’s rapid economic growth is predicated on a permanent peace and trading relations with its neighbours rather than the specter of nuclear war and terrorist subversion.
  • Pakistan has invited Dr Singh to visit Pakistan and make a notable gesture of permanent peace. He should seize the day. At least Siachin and Sir Creek are amenable to quick resolution as all Indian and Pakistani diplomats and pundits know. So India’s win at Mohali needs to be cemented with an Indo-Pak “win” in Lahore during Dr Singh’s visit to Pakistan as soon as possible.

Thursday, March 31, 2011

CIA-ISI partnership after Davis

Raymond Davis now free man

It was a classic proverbial mid-night deal secured by all those who matter in this country – from the presidential palace on the Hilltop to Aabpara to the General Headquarter in Rawalpindi, underscoring a “consensus among all the stake-holders in the current power structure” that Davis deserved no diplomatic immunity but his case would be wrapped up before sunrise on March 16, in the heavily fortified Kot Lakhpat jail. Everyone involved would be out of the country before people would come to know about it. This is precisely what came to transpire. The Inter-services Intelligence (ISI) executed the entire operation, practically took over the jail and made the families of the victims – Faheem and Faizan – sign the compensation deal within minutes of Davis’ “indictment” by the judge, Yousuf Ojla. The ISI then led six US Consulate vehicles to the Lahore Airport where reportedly 18 passengers boarded a special aircraft and left Pakistan before dawn.

Although the counsel of the bereaved families alleged that the families of Faizan and Fahim had been forcibly brought from their homes to the court to ink the “2.3 million blood money deal at gunpoint,” yet from the government perspective, the Davis saga ended rather smoothly, thereby marking the beginning of a new phase in the increasingly wobbly CIA-ISI relationship.

Prime Minister Syed Yusuf Raza Gilani’s March 18 statement made the end game crystal clear. The brief statement basically radiated with the warmth of the “grand national consensus” on the Davis case. “The country’s leadership including the opposition had reached a consensus that the final decision would be taken by the court”. The court, he said, decided in favour of Davis’ release, which was carried out with alacrity and it was therefore inappropriate to hold any single institution responsible for the final outcome of the case.

As events suggest, US-appointed fire-fighter Senator John Kerry’s dash to Islamabad mid February laid out the main contours of bilateral understanding; the government would try to sort out the matter on the basis of diyat (blood money) before the court indicted Davis on murder charges. Kerry was probably also assured that Davis would not be charged for espionage.

Consequently, on February 23, General Kayani held extensive discussions with US Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Admiral Michael Mullen; US Central Command Commander General James Mattis; US Special Operations Command Commander Admiral Eric Olson and NATO Commander in Afghanistan General David Petraeus. At these meetings the ongoing CIA-ISI-led cooperation was reviewed and the military leaders probably also revised the Terms of Reference (ToRs) of this decade old transactional relationship, which both sides tout as a “strategic relationship”.

Many observers point out that the management of the Davis case by the ISI essentially underscored three realities, (i) that the ISI managed to score a point about unbridled CIA activities through security contractors, ii) that the military continues to dominate the political landscape in Pakistan (would Davis be out of jail had the ISI opposed it is the million dollar question?) and iii) the ISI led establishment cut a deal in its own interest.

While the deal is still shrouded in mystery, it will likely help in restoring the CIA-ISI working relationship. It has also helped Nawaz Sharif getting a new lease of political life; by virtually staying quiet away in a London hospital, Sharif successfully washed off his “dangerous anti-American image” (as had been revealed by American diplomats in the cables released by the Wikieleaks).

If events of the past are any indication, the Davis deal is not likely to change the pragmatism underpinning ISI-CIA cooperation; this particular case might put some constraints direct CIA operations such as mapping of the militant networks in mainland Pakistan, particularly in south Punjab but Waziristan remains the point of consensus for the two agencies. A drone strike less than 24 hours of Davis’s departure underlined the CIA’s focus on North Waziristan

Kayani’s condemnation and the protest lodged with the US ambassador highlighted two issues; the drone strike on March 17 gave the ISI and the army a good ruse to fend off severe criticism flowing from their direct handling of the Davis case and it also exposed the limitations of the Pakistani security apparatus. Continued Predator attacks on Dattakhel suggest that this security apparatus is either unable to penetrate areas, where Americans believe al-Qaeda-linked militants are being sheltered or it is complicit with the militant network based in that region. Either way the CIA would continue justifying the use of drones for taking out militants that it says threaten the larger US-NATO interests in Afghanistan.

Davis case, therefore, might have caused frictions between the CIA and ISI, but its settlement is not likely to change the direction of CIA’s air campaign in Waziristan. Since Pakistan is reluctant in going after what the US forces consider “the den of terrorists”, the CIA will keep lobbing Hellfire missiles into Waziristan. The US establishment will also desperately try to keep Pakistan on board for its phased withdrawal plans because the perceived success of the US military surge and partial disengagement hinges on Pakistani cooperation. That is why the US administration desperately wanted to remove the irritant ie Raymond Davis out of the way before Prime Minister Gilani is likely to consent to Afghan president Hamid Karzai’s announcements on transition plans.

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Cash from your blog

affiliate program


Turn your valuable webpage traffic into cash.
Work online and join our free money making affiliate program.
We offer the most commission rate to help increase your
money stream.

Join our income making program absolutely no charge and 100% risk free.

Sign Up...

Get paid after you not working

Set up multiple new money streams
each and every hour.
Get revenue after you not working or even retire at an young age with a
broad cash stream.
Make this one time and get profit over and over again.
This is best time to create
new levels of profit
and prosper on the Internet.

A never ending cash generator

Imagine getting of a something that never failed to generate
A make money program
so amazingly profitable that you never had to work for a boss ever again!


We designed this money making program
specially for NO SETUP FEE methods,
to make hundreds, if not millions of dollars, without spending dollars.

Global Promotion Alliance - in 5 hrs your website will be seen w 80000 hits to your website every month

Saturday, March 12, 2011

Jam Tamachi Remarks in Sind Assembly

Jam Tamachi passed bad comments
Sitting MPA (Sindh Assembly) and Chairman of Public Accounts committee made funny remarks in parallel to resolution passed in Assembly. A welcome move was proposed, for establishment of committee to analyze domestic violence in rural areas. In response to this Mr Jam Tamachi Urran passed in joking tone; " Committee should be established in urban areas to analyze the mental torture faced by men by women'. As a result three members of the Assembly walked out as protest.
Mr Jam Tamachi belongs to PPP, which is having a long history of fighting for the rights of women. In 2010 approximately 8000 cases were registered including rape and honor killing. Same political party claims as the only voice for women rights in the country, and at the same time senior politicians of the party having totally different mind set.
Sexual harassment at work places law was approved by PPP, and the credit goes to them against all the odds by religious parties. Thereby, violence against women should be taken up seriously and their is a need that with good education and social counseling of masses, trend would change.

Friday, March 11, 2011

Pakistan's Future by Stephen P Cohen

Stephen P Cohen is an old friend of Pakistan and under mentioned are the crux of discussion with political scientist on the same topic.
Over all he was pessimistic in his opinion. In his views, their would be revival of insurgencies, absence of economy and non organized political / Government institutions.
 Question raised during the course of discussion was regarding the survival of Pakistan in Future.
He addresses five driving forces Pakistan to fast decay
  • Pakistan is a fragile Nuclear State with long record of proliferation.
  • Pakistan follow a policy of supporting Jihad movements and have either turned a blind on their activities or incapacity of holding them in doing wrong in European countries and China.
  • Identity based disputes with India are still present and they would be worsen in coming decades.
  • Pakistan is economically stagnating , and it was worsen with the Earth Quake and present floods moreover bad demography is worsening the odds.
  • Worse performance by Civil Military elite, who failed to make Pakistan a growing concern.
Possible Scenarios emerging from this discussion.
 The report has provided seven scenarios more and less the same, Stephen believes in Parallel Pakistan state, however few crux from the time lined events are :-
  • Federation would be weakened, which would eventually cause the collapse of Army and thereby remove the pivot in Pakistan. This would cause erosion in its infrastructure, law and order situation would be worsen, poor governance and sectarianism would increase.
  • Before the happening of all above their would be emergence of militia, which would provide social services like Hamas and Hezbollah.
  • He believes that if the only objective of ruling elite is to extend their tenure and make profit then the decay of the society is obvious and certain.
 Solution and author views
  •  Essential reforms in security and financial sectors are postponed due to bad governance, Government is acting like Step uncle, they can point out the faults and can provide the solution, but unable to implement the remedies.
  • Pakistan Military and Civil Leadership should transfer the Pakistan paradigm from security state to a state providing human and citizen security.

Monday, March 7, 2011

New controversy or Facts Raymon Davis

An investigation report on Wednesday revealed that Raymond Davis was the station head of Central Investigation Agency (CIA) in Pakistan and was a former U.S. marine who served for M-5 Corps. Investigation report pertaining to American murderer Raymond Davis forwarded to high ups exposed his real identity as ‘Michael George Fernandez’. Owing the exclusive expertise in ‘intelligence operating system’, he was deputed in American CIA from M-5 Corps for the execution of secret mission. Previously, he served under the direct authority of CIA chief Leon Panetta.
Highly reliable sources disclosed Davis is an expert in articulating Pushto, Urdu, Punjabi, Persian, Hindko and Marathi, and this why he was deputed in Pakistan as CIA chief in December 2010. Sources told that investigation report includes information regarding his meeting with American Consular General, Carmela Conroy in Lahore where he handed over the secrete computer chip about the U.S. drone attacks in FATA and since drones have again started operating.
Investigative report also disclosed Davis’s visit to Karachi where he called on two political cum nationalist leaders and distributed bunch of money. Investigations pertaining to that are underway.-

Friday, February 25, 2011

Another Loan

The government has succeeded in securing a loan of US$173 million (Rs14 billion) from Japan while our country is already under a debt burden of US$54 billion. Though it is being said that this loan will be provided on easy installment, who will pay it off? The common people, of course.

While taking such steps the rulers should remember that the day is not far away when the people of Pakistan will come out on the streets just like the peoples of Egypt, Tunisia and Libya.

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Punjab’s request for trying Davis declined

ISLAMABAD: The federal government has declined a Punjab government request seeking trial of ‘US diplomatic official’ Raymond Davis, who is also facing double murder charges, The Express Tribune has learnt.
The Punjab government had asked for instituting a case of espionage against Davis. Police prosecutors had recommended trying Davis for spying on the basis of “strong evidence” against him. However, the federal government’s consent was necessary because Davis claims to be a member of the US diplomatic mission, sources said.
In a letter to the federal government, the provincial authorities had recommended registration of an espionage case on the basis of a confessional statement of Davis that he had made during interrogation, the source added.
Police had recovered sensitive documents and photographs of Pakistan’s defence installations from Davis.
In another letter addressed to the ministry of foreign affairs, the Punjab government has sought the custody of four employees of the US consulate-general in Lahore.
They are accused of crushing to death a Pakistani citizen while they were driving in a marketplace of Lahore on Jan 27 when Davis shot dead two Pakistanis. The police had registered a criminal case against them.
According to Punjab Law Minister Rana Sanaullah, the accused are hiding in the US consulate general in Lahore. The consulate officials have asked the Punjab government to approach the ministry of foreign affairs for the custody of the four men and their vehicle.
Another source told The Express Tribune that the police have recovered a file from Davis which contained highly sensitive information.
Published in The Express Tribune, February 15th, 2011.

Monday, February 14, 2011

Rahat Fateh Ali Khan detained in India

Published: February 14, 2011
Pakistani singer detained for allegedly carrying a huge amount of undeclared foreign currency.
ISLAMABAD: Noted Pakistani singer Rahat Fateh Ali Khan was detained at the Indira Gandhi International Airport on Sunday evening by Revenue Intelligence sleuths for allegedly carrying a huge amount of undeclared foreign currency in violation of local currency laws.

Khan, a classical musician-turned hit Bollywood playback singer, arrived on a flight from Karachi and was intercepted by personnel from the Directorate of Revenue Intelligence acting on some prior information, the local media quoted official sources as saying.

They said the singer was carrying a huge amount of foreign currency which he did not declare to the immigration authorities. Two other persons accompanying him have also been detained. Khan is being questioned for the currency which is in excess of $100,000.

The 37-year-old, nephew of singing legend Ustad Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan, was earlier, too, involved in a controversy when organisers of a concert in Gurgaon filed a police complaint against him in July last year for his failure to turn up for a show.

Khan has several hit numbers to his credit and is this year’s recipient of the Filmfare Award for Best Male Playback Singer for Dil To Bachcha Hai Ji from the movie Ishqiya.

Meanwhile in Pakistan Interior Minister Rehman Malik phoned High Commissioner to India Shahid Malik and asked him to keep in touch with the Indian authorities investigating Khan.

Shahid Malik will take up the matter with the Indian authorities to solve the issue, according to a spokesperson for the interior ministry.

“The minister directed the envoy to meet New Dehli high-ups and make every possible effort to get the legendary singer released as soon as possible after fulfilling legal requirements,” the spokesperson added.

According to the state-run television, the minister also directed him to keep a tab on the issue and provide legal and consular support to Khan.

It added that the envoy “has also established contact with airport officials and other relevant authorities in India to prepare a strategy in this regard”.

Published in The Express Tribune, February 14th, 2011.

Thursday, February 10, 2011

PIA Code Sharing Agreement with Turkish airline

Protests between disgruntle employees and PIA Administration are still at large, most of international and national flights are  canceled or rescheduled. Main reason for protests are non transparency and bad rumors in the air.
Pakistan International Airline as press released on the issues to resolve major rumors,  first of all PIA has not sold its international flying routes to Turkish Airs. Code Sharing agreement is normal practice in international Airline Business. Code Sharing Agreement , is an aviation business arrangement where two airlines share the same flight. A seat can be purchased on one airline but is actually operated by a cooperating airline under a different flight number or code.
The important aspects of the PIA’s notifications are presented below:
Pakistan International Airlines (PIA), operates 2-3 frequency per week to most International stations due fleet/point to point traffic constraints. In an endeavor to offer daily connectivity to about 100 International destinations from its major gateways, Karachi, Lahore and Islamabad, PIA evaluated a result driven opportunity, a partnership that would support a sustainable future, under a joint venture commercial arrangement with Turkish Airlines (TK), an airline that has a large fleet, serves 167 destinations and is a member of Star Alliance.
The plan envisaged will provide daily connectivity for destinations in USA, Europe, Central Asian Region and points in Africa, while connections will also be available for traffic originating west of Istanbul for Middle East and Gulf countries via Istanbul. Tour packages will be possible , as passengers( traveling via Istanbul) with visa for onward destinations  will be able to acquire entry visa for Istanbul on arrival, a facility not available at any en route point.PIA Cabin Crew will serve on board Turkish Airlines flights, Pakistani food, newspapers and in-flight entertainment to a number of destinations served by PIA under the code share arrangement.

This arrangement is agreed in principle in the interest of Pakistan International Airline and its customers; however its implementation is subject to approval of regulatory authorities and the Board of Directors.

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Mumtaz Qadri’s indictment deferred

A court on Tuesday deferred the indictment of the police commando who confessed to killing one of the country’s most liberal politicians.
Punjab Governor Assassin

One of Qadri’s lawyers, Raja Shuja Rehman, the indictment could not take place as planned because the prosecution had yet to provide the defence with six police statements. “The court has ordered that the statements be provided to us and the next hearing has been fixed on February 4. According to the rules, an indictment can be done seven days after statements are provided,” he added.

Yousuf Raza authorised Ambassador to issue visas to US citizens without security clearance by Pakistan

Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani had authorized the Pakistan Ambassador in Washington to issue visas to US citizens without clearance by security agencies in Pakistan and more than 500 such visas were issued in three days, documents with The News reveal.
Prime Minister Pakistan

The strength of the US Mission in Islamabad has also not only swollen from 280 to about 1,000, including CIA personnel, without any agreement between the two governments nor has the US Embassy provided a list of its officials to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, which is a common protocol worldwide.

According to a document of the Ministry of Interior that the News has procured as a part of its investigation: “The Prime Minister has been pleased to direct that the Ambassador in Washington will be empowered, with immediate effect, to issue visas valid up to one year without the Embassy having to refer the aforementioned visa applications to the concerned authorities in Pakistan.” The letter further says, “The Pakistan Embassy in US would issue these visas under intimation to the Prime Minister’s office in Islamabad.”

Within three days of issuance of this letter, Pakistan’s ambassador in the US issued visas to 500 US officials. Why he was in such a rush has not been explained but sources in the FM say the practice has continued.

The News has procured the list of 436 US officials, who were issued visas in July, 2010. The purpose of visits is shown to be “official business”, “assignment”, “NGO Duty”, “USAID”, “US Army assignment” and “Dyncorps”. It is worth mentioning that due to various security and travel advisories issued by the US State Department, hardly any US businessman or common citizen has visited Pakistan in recent months. For any business deals, Pakistani counterparts are invited to the UAE or other countries in case a meeting is desired by US nationals. The PM’s letter empowering the ambassador flouted the visa policy formulated only months before its issuance. The US Embassy in Islamabad is already undergoing large scale expansion. Well-placed sources in Islamabad have said that the Capital Development Authority has sold 8.2 acres of land (164 kanals) at the rate of US$500 per square yard without bringing the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in the loop.

The US Embassy is already occupying a vast area of 31.9 acres in Diplomatic Enclave. Initially, in March 2009, the US Embassy tried to acquire 18.5 acres of additional land at nominal rates by directly negotiating with the CDA and without the concurrence of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

Out of this land, 10 acres of land was located outside the Diplomatic Enclave. It was actually in the green belt and the CDA had offered that land on lease at the rate of Rs 15,000 per square yard. On the observation and interference of the concerned authorities, however, the allocation of 18.5 acres of land to US Embassy was stopped and only 8.5 acres of land at the rate of US$1,000 per square yard was offered.

In October, 2010, the US Embassy again approached Ministry of Foreign Affairs and CDA for the allotment of 8.2 acres of land at the rate of US$500 per square yard.

According to sources, the CDA has accepted the request without bringing the Ministry of Foreign Affairs on board. Some of the government officials are also said to be assisting the US in furthering its agenda of expansion by bypassing routine channels. It remains a million dollar question as to why the US Embassy is undergoing such a large expansion without following normal diplomatic protocols.

According to sources, the US Embassy has already undertaken massive construction and it has plans to enhance its control of Diplomatic Enclave. It has already funded building three gates and wants to appoint guards from a security agency. Security cameras and vehicle scanners are also being installed at the gates besides setting up five check posts on the road leading to US Embassy. Sources said 500 foreigners are also likely to come to Pakistan in the garb of labourers.

In Karachi, a huge fortress-like complex on 20.5 acres of land with latest facilities has been constructed for the US Consulate General. It is said that the place will be used as US base for activities in Sindh and Balochistan. According to sources, the US is acquiring land at Gwadar, Quetta and Multan for establishing its consulates.

Monday, January 31, 2011

Egypt Seethe

Hosni Mubarak
Events in Egypt are in faster pace for the global diplomats to keep up with. It seems to be doubtful that Mr Hosni Mubarak would be able to pull himself out of present turmoil; riots are erupting in every part of the country. Mr Mubarak has changed his cabinet and for the first time in 30 years of his rule, appointed any deputy. US being an old ally of present regime is in a dicey position, Mr Obama while commenting on present situation in Egypt have state that Mr Mubarak should bring necessary reforms to the country and have asked the protestants to remain calm and peaceful. On the other hand more than 200 individuals are killed and even 1000 injured in this new burst of violence in the country. Police has pulled out, and virtually Army has taken up the streets.
Muslim Brotherhood
At present , the protests are secular and there are no signs of religious parties like Muslim brotherhood, but no one can say anything with surety that when this scenario would be takeover by religious elements. Due to the geographical location and Egypt’s standing in Arab League, Israel is looking over the present situation very closely. In 2005 election Muslim Brotherhood’s candidates were elected on 20 % of seats, however there candidates were not nominated for most of the constituencies. Islamic sentiments are building strong with every passing day. Right now, as we have seen that protests are secular and riots have not taken up the shape of revolution due to non availability of strong leadership, Nobel Literate Mohammad ElBaradei is the most prominent figure and he is not a political figure.
2008 food roits were handled by Mr Hosni Mubarak regime in better manner. Since 1958, military has played very prominent role in countries politics, but as per the sources Army is not happy with President’s son.

Saturday, January 29, 2011

Blast on Kohat Tunnel

Bulid in Jun 2003

There have been reportedly suicidal attack near Kohat tunnel, damaging the road side of tunnel towards Peshawar. Eight people are killed and ten injured during the blast. Kohat tunnel was build in close collaboration with Japan, it is 1.9 Km long a serves an alternate route to Kohat and Peshawar. No group has accepted the responsibility, however, this route was under strict check by Law Enforcement Agencies.

Friday, January 28, 2011

US Official gunned down three in Lahore

Raymond David
Motorcyclist rushed down
US consulate employee (Raymond David) shot one motor cyclist near Quartaba Chowk, while another motorcyclist was rushed down by his colleague in an attempted to rescue Raymond David. US employees ran away from the site and they were chased by traffic wardens and was caught near Old Anarkali Bazar. Raymond David was using Consulate car with fake number plate (LZN 6970).
Fake number plate US consulate car
Raymond David said in his statement that he fired on the motorcyclist in self defense. A senior official of Police have stated that Us Consulate employees are not authorized to carry weapon as per Pakistan's Law, however he was carrying 9mm Glock pistol with himself, which is against the law.
After further investigating it was revealed that Raymond David is the same individual who was caught near Sharpao Bridge  in 2009, and was stopped by the police trying to enter Lahore Cantonment in tinted glass vehicle.
Author Views Such kind of incidents are becoming common in Pakistan. First Black Water individual were roaming in Pakistani streets carrying illegal weapons, drone attacks are killing innocent Pakistanis in Waziristan and now US consulate employees are killing innocent pedestrians as self defense.  

Thursday, January 27, 2011

Terbela Dam largest dam of world ... In Pakistan

Tarbela Dam is a large dam on the Indus River in Pakistan. It is located in Haripur district of Hazara Division of North-West Frontier Province about 50 km northwest of Islamabad. Reservoir size of some (250 km2) makes it the largest earth filled dam in the world. The dam was completed in 1974 and was designed to store water from the Indus River for irrigation and flood control, and for the generation of hydro-electric power. On May 14, 1968, Tarbela dam was World’s largest single contract for the construction of civil works at that time, the Tarbela Dam Project was signed at a price of $ 623 Million between the Water and Power Development Authority of Pakistan and the Tarbela Dam Joint Venture which comprised a group of three Italian and three French heavy construction contractors.
Power generation:
Total generating capacity of Tarbela Power Station is 3478 MW. However, there are further plans to increase the power generation by 800 MW to bring the total Power Generation Capacity to more than 4200 MW.
Life Span:
The useful life of the dam and reservoir was estimated to be somewhere around fifty years, since the dam's completion in 1976, meaning that the reservoir would have been full of sediment by 2030.Sedimentation, however, has been much lower than predicted, and it is now estimated that the useful lifespan of the dam will be 85 years, to about 2060.

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Pakistan cannot develop Thar Coal Project indigenously

Thar Coal World 2nd Largest Reserves
Dr AQ view point regarding Thar Coal Project
By the time coal deposits were discovered in Thar, Sindh there was large hue and cry in the media and elsewhere that these mineral resources would thrust our nation with 50,000 MW of electricity for the next 500 years. Moreover it was consider that Pakistan is now holding 185 Billion Tons of Coal deposits, however this perception was wrong there are only 3 billion tons of proven coal deposits of low grade. Shenhua Group of China was contacted for coal mining and processing, they were to provide four power reactor of 325 MW capacities each by the end of 2010. Shenhua was to employee 17000 of local workers and thousands of watts of electricity to national grid.
Dr Abdul Qadir Khan

Last year Chairman of Pakistan Atomic Energy Commission (PAEC) claimed that 8080 MW of electricity would be produced by 2030. However, this would remain as a big question mark……. Pakistan has commissioned three nuclear reactors so far, one was given by Canada and two by China. Its been more than 40 years and with the manpower of 20000 individuals and PAEC has not been able to provide this nation with a single nuclear reactor, however the technology is as old as 50 years. To produce 8080 MW from nuclear reactors, we would be recovering 29 reactors of 300 MW of output capacity and as a rough estimate 1 billion US dollars are recovered for each reactor.
Author views
Pakistani politicians have made Thar Coal a political stance and repudiate this nation from electricity as cheap as 5.39 cents per unit. Thar Coal Project would have provided us with the expertise and trained manpower, which could be used in Reko Diq gold and copper Project in Baluchistan. Dr AQ Khan is a metallurgy expert and having 40 years of experience in this field. Pakistan cannot arrange millions of dollars initial investment required for such a massive project. Any project with little experience would result in corruption as the cases of PIA and Pakistan Steels are already in lime light.

Lahore Bomb Blast Killed 11 Individuals

Urdu Bazar - Blast Site
A teenager blew himself up  near the Chelum procession in Lahore. Pakistani Taliban toke the responsibility of this attack. 11 persons including policemen, women and children and 70 are reportedly wounded / killed during this incidence.
The incident took place at Mugharib time as per the on spot witnesses, at Urdu Bazar Lahori Gate Lahore.
 Amount of TNT used has not been calculated yet, however the blast was so powerful that it was heard far and wide , the intensity of the blast was so high that window panels of buildings were broken.
After one and half hour later a suicide bomber on motorcycle stuck police van  in Karachi. As per Police officials, suicide bomber was targeting the police men.
Analysis: Although the objective of Lahore Blast seems to be very clear, as Pakistani Taliban has already accepted the responsibility of the attack, however main players in these kind of activities are still not overt in public. Karachi blast is a terrorist attack, but there are probabilities that due to the present operation in Orangi town and other notorious zones in Karachi is at large, so may be this can be a response in that connection.

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Tahrik e Talban Pakistan (TTP) banned in UK

British have banned TTP as a terrorist, making it illegal to belong or raise funds for this group in Britain.
Home Office Minister Damien Green told that apart from the involvement of TTP in terrorist attacks in Pakistan, this group was also involved in failed terrorist activities in Time Square.
He successfully convinced the MPs that proscription order against the group should be passed under Terrorism Act 2000, thereby banning the group to operate in Britain.

TTP is foreign funded terrorist group
TTP demands enforcement of sharia in Pakistan,resistance against Pakistan Army and removal of NATO forces from Pakistan, this proscription would align Britain with international consensus against this terrorist group

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

7.3 Magnitude Eathquke in Pakistan

As per US Geographic Survey has said that quake was more than 80 Km underground near town of Dalbandin, Baluchistan (located several hundred kilometers from the Pakistani city of Quetta and the city of Zahedan, Iran).
Magnitude of earthquake were recorded as 7.3 on Richter Scale.
Shock waves were experienced in Provinces of Punjab, Sindh and Baluchistan. Shock waves were also experienced from Dubai to Delhi.

Monday, January 17, 2011

Govt not Taking Reko Diq Case Seriously: CJ

Last week known scientist Dr Samar Mubarakmand, who is chairman of the board of Governors for Reko Diq project stated in the Supreme Court" Pakistan can earn 3 billion US Dollar from this project. Moreover, he said that Pakistan is having the mining capabilities to explore the gold and copper minerals from Chaghi Hills. Two foreign companies are in partnership with Government of Pakistan. Pakistan will get 300 million US dollar per year as 30 % of the total share.

Chief Juistice of Pakistan Ch Iftikhar took Suo motto action against the extension for further period of this project. Contract period for two foriegn companies are ending in February 2011. The project manager of TCC informed the court that his company plans to invest another $3.5 million whereas $460 million have already been invested in Reko Diq.

Musharraf condemned Salman Taseer killing

London: Musharraf said that blasphemy law could not be amended, however killer of Governor Punjab should be punished. President Musharraf has been planning to return to Pakistan in 2013 elections. He said that he is ready to form coalition with any political party. He is more willing to join hands with MQM.

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Blasphemy law in Pakistan

Active since 1860, British Colonial Rule in Subcontinent

Before commenting upon Blasphemy Law in Pakistan, it is pertinent to understand that judicial system in Pakistan has been influenced from British colonial period. Pakistan Penal Code is derived from British Penal Code (written by British Raj to govern sub continent), which was written in 1860. In 1860, blasphemy law was retained in Indian Penal Code under section 295, which provided protection to religious places, sculptures and personage of all religions.
Religious demonstration ( Blasphemy law)
Pakistan is an Islamic State. Islamic Republic of Pakistan uses Pakistan Penal Code to prohibit and punish blasphemy. Criminal Code provides penalties to the blasphemer from death to fine. Under Constitution of Islamic Republic of Pakistan Article 2, state religion is Islam and under Constitution Article 31, it is country’s duty to promote Islamic way of life. Article 33 of the constitution it is country’s duty to discourage any parochial, tribal, racial, sectarian and provisional prejudice among the citizens. These are the main Constitutional articles providing baseline to the citizens of Pakistan in their Islamic way of living.  
Amendments and additions.
Criminal Law (amendment) Act XXV in 1927 inserted two sections under section 295.
            i. 295 (A) prohibits "deliberate and malicious acts intended to outrage religious feelings of any class by insulting its religion or religious beliefs."
General (Late) Zia ul Haq
            ii.295(B) deals with Defiling of Holy Quran
b.           Under General (Late) Zia ul Haq regime amendments were made in sec 295 (B), extending penalty option to life imprisonment; in sec 295 (C), which outlaws “derogatory remarks on holy prophet (S.A.W)”. in 1986, a minor amendment in sec 295(C) added death penalty.
c.           In 1992, once Mian Nawaz Sharif was in government, amendment was made to include mandatory death penalty on proved blasphemer for derogatory remarks on holy prophet (S.A.W).

You might also like:

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...