Pakistan: Female MP asks ‘Taliban fearing’ Shahbaz to wear dupatta

Peshawar : Pakistan Punjab’s Chief Minister Shahbaz Sharif’s statement pleading to the Taliban to spare the Punjab province from violence has attracted massive outrage in political circles of the country.

“If Punjab Chief Minister Shahbaz Sharif is so scared of the Taliban, then he should starting wearing a ‘dupatta’,” PML-Q leader Nighat Orakzai said while throwing her dupatta on the floor of the house.

It may be noted that speaking during a seminar at a mosque on Sunday (March 14, 2010), Shahbaz had pleaded to the Taliban to not to carry out attacks in Punjab.

Sindh : Where are law enforcers?

by Qazi Altaf, Hyderabad, Sindh

A photograph appeared in a local daily showing some angry young men (moslyt teenagers) of Aqil Village, Naudero, who were supposed to hold books, seizing weapons in their hands. As per caption they were anticipating possible attack by a clan with who their family had enemity on some metrimonial affair.

A glance of the picture reminds one a scene of some western Cowboy movie where every citizen used to carry a gun for his personal protection.

If the state of law and order of such an important place like Naudero, a constituency of Late Mohtarama Benazir Bhutto is so precarious, one can imagine the worsening conditions of other areas of the province.

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Sharif and the Taliban

Courtesy: daily dawn

Even by the wretched standards of the cesspit of lies and cravenness that can be the Pakistani political establishment, the comments made on Sunday by Punjab Chief Minister Shahbaz Sharif are extraordinary and demand the most vigorous condemnation possible.

Essentially, Mr Sharif has argued that his party, the PML-N, shares a common cause with the Taliban —that of opposing Gen Musharraf and his policies and rejecting ‘dictation’ from abroad — and therefore the Taliban should ‘spare’ Punjab. The very thought that any mainstream politician, let alone one as high-profile and powerful as the serving Punjab chief minister, could find anything in common with the Taliban ideology is despicable.

But Mr Sharif has gone so much further than that. By asking the Taliban to ‘spare’ Punjab, what does the Punjab CM mean? Does he mean that the Taliban should launch their attacks elsewhere, in Sindh, Balochistan, the NWFP, Fata, Pata or other places? And what does the CM mean when he says that his party is fighting foreign ‘dictation’ just like the Taliban are? Does he mean that Pakistan should not fight the threat of militancy? What does Mr Sharif want to do instead — accommodate the Taliban like they were accommodated in Swat last year? Or should ‘peace deals’ be struck with the Taliban like they were in South Waziristan for years? The chief minister’s half-hearted ‘clarification’ issued later will not suffice; he must apologise to Punjab and the nation.

That Mr Sharif could possibly be ignorant of the threat posed by the Taliban is impossible. As chief minister of Punjab he has sat at the apex of that province’s administration for over a year and a half now. Countless secret and not-so-secret memos will have arrived on his desk detailing the atrocities and crimes committed and planned by the Taliban. The secret interrogation cell that was attacked in Model Town, Lahore, only a few days ago was run by provincial authorities. The Punjab chief minister is mocking the sacrifices made by the very people who serve his administration by finding common cause with the enemy.

Why is it so difficult for the PML-N to condemn terrorism outright, with no ‘ifs’ and ‘buts’? It surely cannot be a question of the reluctance to use violence against ‘fellow Pakistanis’. Like Mr Sharif’s first tenure as chief minister in the late 1990s, Punjab is once again witnessing a spike in ‘encounter’ killings of alleged dacoits, kidnappers and sundry criminals. The men who have been killed in dubious circumstances are also ‘fellow Pakistanis’. But Mr Sharif has no sympathy for these men; in fact, he has on many occasions announced rewards for the policemen for ‘cleaning up’ the province of criminal elements. There has been no talk of an amnesty for such criminals, no appeals to their better sides, no exhortations to recognise that they have much in common with the largest party in Punjab. The ordinary criminals must be wondering what they must do to get on Mr Sharif’s good side. Perhaps a statement against Mr Musharraf will do the trick.

The PML-N needs to come clean with the people of Pakistan. On which side of the divide does it stand? Is it against militancy in all shapes and forms or is it ideologically sympathetic to the ‘justness’ of some facets of the militants’ cause? This is not about political expediency but about the very worst form of moral corruption. Pakistan’s leaders have a sacred duty to protect the people and the sovereignty of the state. There is absolutely nothing in the Taliban’s agenda that is any way even remotely compatible with that sacred duty. In fact, finding common cause with the Taliban is to take the country one step closer to the abyss. Ordinary Pakistanis have shown remarkable courage in resolutely backing the fight against the militants for a year now. Shahbaz Sharif and the PML-N need to accept who the enemy is. Otherwise, they have no business being involved in the affairs of the state.

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Shahbaz requests Taliban not to attack Punjab!

LAHORE: Punjab Chief Minister Shahbaz Sharif on Sunday asked the Taliban not to target the Punjab as the provincial government would not take dictation from outsiders (U.S.A). The Punjab CM was speaking at the annual seminar in the memory of Maulana Mufti Muhammad Hussain Naeemi at Jamia Naeemia. He siad that PMLN and the Talibanhave the same common agenda ( they both oppose Kerry Lugar Bill and ‘foreign dictation’). Its distressing that the chief executive of the largest province of Pakistan is waiving the white flag of surrender to the terrorist group.

Jeay Sindh Mahaz will celeberate “National Right of Self-determination Day”

HYDERABAD: The Jeay Sindh Mahaz (J) at the concluding session of its two-day national congress held in Radhan on Sunday, elected Dr Barkat Ali Jatoi as the chairman of the party for the next two years and Dr Arbab Khuhawar and Abdul Khaliq Junejo as senior vice-chairman and vice- chairman, respectively.

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