A growing number of U.S. intelligence, defense and diplomatic officials have concluded that there’s little hope of preventing nuclear-armed Pakistan from disintegrating into fiefdoms controlled by Islamist warlords and terrorists, posing a greater threat to the U.S. than Afghanistan’s terrorist haven did before 9/11.
By Naseer Memon (English Translation by: Khalid Hashmani)
[Backdrop: As the Pakistani establishment including their new political party partners mull over the upcoming NFC award, the people of Sindh have dug their heals and want that the awards be fair and follow the best practices of other similar countries such as India. The grass-root political workers from all political parties in Sindh who have long criticized the inequalities of NFC award are joining hands to bring an end to the exploiting aspects of the award. In this backdrop, SaeeN Naseer Memon has once again written a timely and detailed analysis of the exploiting nature of current NFC awards. He urges the ruling party that as the inequities in the form of NFC started after 1973 constitution when PPP was in power; the time has come for PPP to play its role in correcting this historic form of exploitation and restore fairness to all provinces. It is hoped that the information in this article would enable those who are engaged in lobbying and advocacy activities on behalf of Sindh to get it in front of decision makers and influencers. ]
Basic inequities of Current NFC Awards
The critical inequities of the NFC award lie in three areas – first it is distributed solely on the basis of population, second it covers almost all of the revenue generation in Pakistan, and third it enables the federal government to keep a lion’s share for itself.
How Pakistan and other countries collect and distribute revenues to Provinces?
In 1974, 1979, and 1990 NFC awards, provinces received 80% of total revenue collected and 20% was kept by the federal government. However, starting 1996 during the rule of an interim government headed by PPP’s Miraj Malik and when the Chief Minister was Mumtaz Bhutto, the federal share was drastically increased to 62.5% leaving only 37.5% for the provinces.
World Sindhi Congress, a leading Sindhi organisation working for the cause of human rights Of Sindh and Sindhis, organised the Sindhi Topi Day on 6th December in major cities of UK, viz, London, Birmingham, Bristol and Manchester. In America and Canada, the event was celebrated in New York and Calgary respectively . A brief account of each event is as follows:
On December 6th, 2009 Sindh and many other places of Pakistan and outside world were coloured with just one shed, the shed of respect for all cultures of the world and respect and love for Sindhi topi and ajrak.
Washington Sindhis Celebrate Sindhi Topi Day and debate Issues and Opportunities faced by Sindhis
By Khalid Hashmani
Sunday, December 6, 2009
Washington, DC – Several Sindhis living in Washington, DC gathered at a local restaurant in Arlington to join their compatriots in Pakistan who celebrated Sindhi Topi (Cap) Day. The event was in reaction to malicious criticism of Pakistani President Asif Zardari, who wore a Sindhi cap while inspecting Guard of Honor in Afghanistan by some members of Pakistani media. Although, Mr., Zardari and the People’s Party of Pakistan (PPP) have lost much credibility among Sindhis, Mr. Zardari is himself of Sindhi origin. The attendees at the Washington DC moot, who wore Sindhi caps and Sindhi Ajraks (a traditional shawl worn by men either as turban or wound around shoulders, and women as shawl), attracted attention from other patrons of the restaurant. The Sindhi attendees proudly explained the purpose of the celebration and briefed them on Ajrak, a form of which was depicted in the excavations of a city that existed 5,000 years ago. The local Sindhis also discussed recent news from Sindh and debated strategies for protecting their culture, language, and identity.
6th December is historic day for Sindh. People have come out in big numbers to express their love for their culture and to condemn the racists anchors like .., .. and their employer .. group. One should call upon the hate mongers to mend their ways. It is not 1972. Sindhis are ready and able today to defend against any attacks on their language and culture. They are ready and able to come together and fight for their rights.
At the same time one must be clear that emotional issues like the present one can not take Zardari and PPP off the hook. They should be judged on their performance. It will be wrong on anyone’s part to assume that the people have come out on the streets in support of PPP or its leadership. It only shows that people of Sindh have resolved that enough is enough and from now on they will fight for their rights no matter who is in ISB.
One so called ethnocentric anchor person’s statements on one urdu TV against Sindhi Topi has shaken the sensitive minds in Sindh. No matter we are from any ethnic group, being a non-Sindhi, I support the cultural response from Sindh. One urdu Tv channel speaks the opinion generated by the invisible forces that destabilize peace of country. We belong to varied ethnic groups in Pakistan and the sustainability of the country depends on co-existence. Such elements should be criticized publicly.
Ali Ahmed Nawaz, PhD. Student, University of Aberdeen, UK.
Dr. Peter D Adamo claims in his book that “Eat Right for your Type” the blood type can determine the sort of your genetics, illnesses and diet. He teaches that type O blood (the Hunter) group are designed to eat meat but beans and wheat products are not good for them because wheat contain lectins and it makes them super alkaline and then makes them unable to be physically active and also type O blood people have tendency to low thyroid.
Type A blood (the Cultivators) group need to eat lots of vegetables, as they are biologically designed not to eat lots of meat because they have tendency to get heart disease, cancer and diabetes quickly.
Type B blood (the Nomads) group is designed to eat mix kind of diet. Vegetables, meat and dairy products. They are resistant to cancer and heart disease but have tendency to get immune system disorders diseases such as diabetes, lupus and multiple sclerosis.
Types AB blood need to mixed diet some meat and vegetables but chicken meat is not good for them. According to Dr. D Adamo, the Type A blood people are designed to eat meat but because they lack enough stomach acid to digest the meat therefore meat fat them quickly. As obesity is not good therefore, type AB blood group people require to eat meat with some limitations.
News are emerging from Sindh that Sindhi Nationalist Parties (under leadership of Awami Tahreek) has decided in a meeting at QASIMABAD that they are willing to take part in General elections in greater benefit of Sindh/national rights because present PPP Govt: is not successful in achieving such rights!!??—-they are also of the opinion that if present Govt: would collapse than Prime-minister have option to announce mid-term elections!and they will participate in such election process?. Well as a student of politics, I have few Questions to ask about this kind of Nationalism.
1. At the end of AwamiTehreeks Long-march in Karachi, Why their leadership allowed pro-Musharaf anti-democratic/anti-Sindh elements like Tahreek i insaf and Jamaat i Islami to use their stage for speeches —– what was their purpose?
2. A lot of Sindhis would question the timings of such pro-active role of Sindhi nationalists When PPP is preparing a case for Sindh in terms of NFC AWARD and for Balouchis in terms of Balouchistan Package (as a new initiative for Balouch Rights). Keep in mind the on-going war, PPP is fighting with Taliban, and other forces in this regard. PPP is also facing Media Propaganda and attacks against Sindhi culture as well.
3.Could it be the same old tactics of Sindhi Nationalists which reminds us their opposition to MRD Movement during 1980’s!? or Can we consider this move (BY ESTABLISHMENT as their long-awaited planning) to dilute PPP majority in Sindh in order to benefit MQM and Nawaz-League and their Chauvanism in long-term fashion. I think these are legitimate Questions which need satisfactory explanation— other people may disagree on this analysis also.
Washington: The United States has offered Pakistan an expansion of military and economic cooperation but has insisted that Islamabad ends dalliance with militant groups for its policy ends in India and Afghanistan, the Washington Post reported on its website. Citing government officials speaking on condition of anonymity, the daily paper reported that James Jones, national security advisor to President Barak Obama, delivered the offer earlier in November to Pakistani President Asif Ali Zardari. The offer of stepped up relations would require an end to Paksitan’s use of insurgent groups toward its policy ends…The report comes on the eve of Obama’s speech Tuesday evening at the US Military Academy at West Point, New York…
Several Washington Sindhis are meeting to observe the Sindhi Cultural Day called as ‘Sindhi Topi Day’ on Sunday (Dec. 6 – 1:00 PM) at the East West Grill restaurant in Arlington. All those who are interested in the protection and promotion of the Sindhi culture are welcome to join the meeting. The event is supported by the Forum for Justice and Democracy in Pakistan (FJDP) of Silverlining International and Sindhi Excellence Team (SET). The gathering will share Sindhi cultural experiences and stories about Sindhi literature, sites, and sounds. The gathering will also reaffirm the pledge to protect and promote Sindhi language and Sindhi culture.
Yet another terrible attack in Rawalpindi. Unfortunately, the Pakistani state continues to be divided against itself and still has not achieved clarity about the war it is fighting.
The army armed and trained half a million terrorists. It encouraged an entire cultural shift towards Jihadism and extremism. It then lost control of the situation after 9-11. BUT instead of stepping back and saying we were wrong (not necessarily publicly, I am just speaking of saying it to themselves) and need to do many things now to fix the mess, they have always pursued a schizophrenic policy where they will abandon some of their former proxies and kill them, while keeping others for future use AND retain crucial parts of the previous paradigm of zero-sum competition with India, playing profitable games with America, retaining monopoly over most of Afghanistan and so on.
Islamabad: Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani said he, and not President Asif Ali Zardari, is running the country. Zardari is under growing pressure to relinquish his sweeping powers that the premier is envisaged to have in the country’s original constitution. ” I should tell you that I am the chief executive and the chief executive is the head of the government,” Gilani said in an interview. …Media in recent weeks have reported Gilani’s unease over Zardari’s constant interference in the day-to-day affairs of the government, mainly through some of the ministers that Gilani had to induct in his cabinet on the president’s instructions…
WASHINGTON: The United States has perilously close to calling Pakistan a …state by alleging that the country’s premier spy agency recently spirited Taliban leader Mullah Omar to Karachi to save him from American drone attacks in Quetta.
36 persons including 5 Army officers ( Major General Bilal Omar, Brigadier Abdur Rauf, Lt. Colonel Fakhar, lt. Colonel Manzoor Saeed and Major Zahid) have been martyred and several injured in a terror attack at Parade Lane mosque in Rawalpindi. DG ISPR has confirmed the killing of 26 people. Children are also among the martyrs.
According to sources, security forces shot dead three terrorists. A part of the mosque also damaged in the incident…
LONDON, DECEMBER 2, 2009. World Sindhi Congress expressed its full support and intended participation in “Sindhi Topi and Ajrak Day” (Sindhi Cap and Scarf Wearing Day) being celebrated all over the world on December 6th, 2009. International cultural get-togethers are already planned in London, Manchester, Bristol and Scotland as well as in New York.
Sindh, currently within the geo-political boundaries of Pakistan and homeland to 35 million Sindhi people, has an aboundingly rich culture, heritage and language dating back thousands of years. Since its inclusion in Pakistan, six decades ago, the indigenous people of Sindh have suffered systematic and institutionalized marginalization of their language and culture.
SINDH – Karachi: The Muttahida Qaumi Movement, an ally of the Pakistan People’s Party-led ruling coalition at the centre and in Sindh, announced its support to the call for observing Dec 6 as Sindhi Topi Day.
“Sindhi topi and ajrak have been symbols of the Sindhi culture and civilisation for thousands of years and all the people of Sindh have an emotional attachment with these cultural symbols,” said MQM chief Altaf Hussain in a statement from his London office.
He said the communities living in other provinces and areas of Pakistan have their culture and traditions and different languages, “therefore, nobody should raise objections to Sindhi Topi Day and all Pakistanis should respect other communities’ cultures.”
He urged that there must be no statement or speech that hurts the feelings of any ethnic group and that one should respect other cultures just like their own and refrain from attacks. He said MQM extends its full support to all the people of Sindh, including mothers, sisters, elders, the youth and children on Sindhi Topi Day. Sindh government’s PPP and its coalition partner, the Awami National Party, have already announced their support to Sindhi Top Day and the MQM has also joined in the celebrations for the cultural day of Sindh. irfan ali
..I think it was a very good speech. The “withdrawal date” is a joke, but I dont think it will have any serious impact on affairs on the ground. IF the US/NATO forces are seen to be taking the initiative and going after the Taliban and have a plan for all aspects of the problem, people will see that and react accordingly. If they seem to be just treading water, people will see that too and react accordingly. If a deal is being made to allow Pakistan to reinsert its proxies into Afghanistan in exchange for an orderly withdrawal, we will see evidence soon enough. If no deal has been made and Pakistan is pressured to drop its proxies and help NATO pummel them before 2011, people will see that too. There is only so much you can do with PR, the rest is actual work (and kinetics?)
The salafist/jihadist insurgency will continue and nation states will have to fight against it because it is not compatible with the existing international system. Some states will take a while to figure this out. If this works, Pakistan will have chosen to dump these people and will be getting help in its fight. If this does not work, the US will suffer a setback, but will be able to cut its losses and move on, but Pakistan will be at the center of a much bigger mess than what exists now and will have to figure things out after dragging its people through unnecessarily bitter experiences. But what the hell, that wont be the first time history takes the roundabout way…
Similarly, Zardari should have undone the 17th Amendment and transferred powers to the prime minister, who is elected by parliament. If he had done that, at least he could have the moral authority to effectively safeguard the elected government’s sovereignty
Every Eid many Pakistani newspapers reveal where the Army chief offered his prayers. Sometimes, the Corps Commanders get this publicity as well. I started looking for similar information about the US army chief, i.e. where he went for Christmas Mass. However, I could not find any mention of an army boss going for Christmas Mass in any newspaper. Thinking it may be an unfair comparison, I searched European, Indian and other newspapers and found that no one mentioned where military chiefs went for their religious services. Then why is General Kayani or his predecessors’ venue of Eid prayers newsworthy?
I absolutely agree with you that identity politics is a curse for humanity. Human beings are all alike, subject to the same biological laws and aspiring for the same ideals–freedom, peace, progress, happiness, democracy and so on.
My recent trip to the United States has been an enriching experience, during which I had a very healthy discourse with the American public and an opportunity to understand their concerns about the war in Afghanistan. One question I was asked almost everywhere I went was, “How can we stop losing?”
Asthma is a multi-factor medical condition. From environment to inflammation there are many factors involved. Some of them are; Allergies, Toxicity, Unhealthy diet and stress. This may help- Vitamin C (500mg twice a daily), Magnesium (20mg twice a daily) or take multi-minteral + multi-vitamin tablet and consume grapes fruit, oranges and lemons in moderate amount and cut the sugar and sugar products, cacke and cacke products. Avoid things which gives you allergy. Such as dust, smoke, pollen etc. Drink fresh crystal clean water. Consume fresh washed raw vegetables and fruits.
MINGORA: A teenaged suicide bomber blew himself up, killing ANP lawmaker Shamsher Ali Khan as he was seeing off guests who had come to his house here to offer Eid greetings on Tuesday. Shamsher Khan’s two brothers and nine other people were injured. The man with explosives strapped to his body had walked unchallenged into the Hujra of the MPA’s house, witnesses said. Shamsher Khan died on the spot while his brothers Shaukat Ali Khan and Mohammad Ali Khan were injured.
NEW DELHI/JAMMU: With 42 terrorist-training camps still operational in Pakistan and PoK, the Indian army says there are over 2000 miltants/Jihadists waiting across the border for “an opportune and favourable time” to sneak into Indian administrated Kashmir. There are estimated 42 Jihadist camps in Pakistan as per (Indian intelligence) reports. The total number of militants staged in these camps is roughly between 2000 and 2500 and they are ready to infiltrate to Indian administrated side of Kashmir. Deepak Kapoor, after inauguration of a war memorial ‘Balidean Sthambh’ at Jammu. The Indian army chief, however, said that the security forces were maintaining a high state of vigilance to thwart infiltration bid by militants. “Indian troops are always ready. The Indian army ready to deal with them,” the Indian army chief said. Holding that it did not really matter whether it was Taliban, LeT, Hizbul Mujahideen or any other outfit, the Indian army chief added, Turning to the recent spike in ceasefire violations, Gen Kappor said the other side of army was trying to push in “more and more militants” into J&K before the mountain passes got snowed under. Indian Defence minister A. K. Antony had also recently talked about it. Gen Kapoor said the the security forces are talking “appropriate action” to counter such incidents.
I remember President Kennedy’s visit to West Berlin when Germany was divided and felt in pain. He stood up and said WE ALL ARE BERLINERS. He did not become Berliner but in one sentence he shared pain of all Germans and expressed his soliderity with them.
Today, Sindhis feel insecure, deprived, less developed and hurt in Pakistan. I believe that it is duty of every Pakistani to stand up and identify themselves with Sindhis. What is easier than wearing Sindhi topi on december 6th?
I urge you to wear Sindhi Topi on December 6 and I urge all of Pakistanis to wear it and show solidarity with Sindhi people and culture.
..The power-hungry elements in our security establishment haven’t learned their lessons. They still want to call the shots; they still want the security forces to assert its hegemony over the democratic, civilian Government; they still want to grab power.
Kamran Shafi’s house was fired upon because he was advocating the appointment of a civilian chief of the country’s premier intelligence agency, as is the norm in all democratic countries worldwide. This shameful and brazen act of intimidation must be condemned by everyone.
Similarly , security establishment’s manipulation of public opinion and attempts to intimidate and harass the civilian Government over the Kerry-Lugar Bill and reports of security establishment’s undertaking an investigation of commercial matters of petroleum companies (under whose orders and under what law?) indicates that some elements in the establishment wants to create an impression in the country that the security forces controls the civilian Government and that the security establishment is still the final arbiter in affairs of the country. I think all our political parties and civil society should set aside their differences to curb and whittle down this dangerous threat once and for all lest the sordid history of security forces’ power grabbing in Pakistan is repeated yet again.
Courtesy: Tausif Kamal and email@example.com
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