Pakistan appeased militant groups, ignored army abuses in 2011: HRW

NEW YORK: Pakistan’s fledgling democratic government, under increasing pressure from the military, appeased extremist groups, ignored army abuses and failed to hold those responsible for serious abuses accountable in 2011, New York-based advocacy group Human Rights Watch has said. ….

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India: Disappointing Year for Human Rights

Failure to Address Impunity, Police Reform, Torture, Women’s Rights

(New York) – The Indian government during 2011 failed to hold rights violators accountable or to carry out effective policies to protect vulnerable communities, Human Rights Watch said today in its World Report 2012.

The government took no action to repeal the widely discredited Armed Forces Special Powers Act, disregarding the recommendations of political leaders and advisers, Human Rights Watch said. The government also ignored the urgent need for police reform despite widespread complaints of torture and unlawful killings as well as deplorable working conditions for police personnel….

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ISI chief meets a serial coup-maker, guilty of massive human rights abuses and former dictator Musharraf, tells him not to return to Pakistan.

– ISI chief secretly meets Musharraf in Dubai: sources

ISLAMABAD: Lt General Ahmed Shuja Pasha, the chief of the Inter Services Intelligence (ISI), held a secret meeting with former President General (retired) Pervez Musharraf in Dubai advising him not to visit Pakistan, sources told DawnNews on Monday.

“General Pasha, who has remained very close to the former president, held a meeting with him (Musharraf) in Dubai and advised him not to return to the country as the situation is not conducive for his return,” said an insider while requesting anonymity from this correspondent.

The Senate on Monday also passed a resolution demanding the arrest of the former military ruler on his return. Interior Minister Rehman Malik also announced that Musharraf would be arrested the day he landed in Pakistan.

The sources claim that Pasha strictly advised Musharraf to not to return.

It is yet not clear whether the meeting was held on the directions of the ruling Pakistan People’s Party government or if it was a private meeting. However the sources insist that it was a private meeting between the two.

The sources also claim that Pasha enjoys a long history of relations with the former dictator.

In 2008, during the last year of Musharraf as president, Pasha was appointed to the key posting of Director General (DG) of Military Operations Directorate. Later General Kayani, after becoming the chief of Army Staff, promoted him as Lt Gen and appointed him the chief of the ISI.

Currently two important cases against Pervez Musharraf have been registered in Pakistan. An Anti Terrorists Court (ATC) in Rawalpindi has already declared Musharraf a proclaimed offender in the Benazir Bhutto murder case. Musharraf was also nominated in Akbar Bugti’s murder case in Balochistan.

The sources also claim that Musharraf, after meeting with the ISI Chief, called a meeting of his party on January 25th for revisiting his decision to return to Pakistan.

Courtesy: DAWN.COM

Election Commission of Pakistan – Supreme court’s “stay order” against “by-pools” unconstitutional

SC’s staying by-polls unconstitutional: EC

ISLAMABAD: Secretary Election Commission, Ishtiaq Ahmed Khan, Monday said, though staying the set by-polls was a violation of the Constitution, but EC would honour Supreme Court’s order, Geo News reported.

Addressing a press conference here, he said that Supreme Court of Pakistan did not hear us out on the issue of by-elections. ….

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Sindhi is a very sweet and melodious language – Dr. Annemarie Schimmel

Sindhi is a very sweet and melodious language. Writes Dr. Annemarie Schimmel, Harvard professor of linguist: “Since every word in Sindhi ends in a vowel, the sound is very musical.”

Sindhi is a very rich language with a vast vocabulary; this has made it a favourite of many writers and so a lot of literature and poetry has been written in Sindhi. Writes K. R. Malkani in “THE SINDH STORY”: ‘The Sindhi language and literature reflect the rich variety and quality of Sindhi life and thought. Sindhi has 125 names for as many varieties of fish. From Hyderabad to the sea, a distance of less than one hundred miles, the Sindhu river has half a dozen names — Sahu, Sita, Mograh, Popat, Bano, and Hajamiro — to reflect its many moods. The camel has a score of names, to indicate its age, colour, gait and character.’

It is the language of Saints and Rishis of ancient Sindh. It has been the inspiration for Sindhi art, music, literature, culture and the way of life. Many great poets and literatis have been profoundly inspired by the beauty of Sindhi language.

Fatima Bhutto Blasts Imran Khan

By Margherita Stancati

There was a short-lived rumor last month that Fatima Bhutto was flirting with the idea of joining Imran Khan’s opposition Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf party.
Speaking at the Jaipur Literature Festival on Sunday, she made it clear this was unlikely to happen. Ever.

He (Imran Khan)  has an incredible coziness not with the military but with dictatorship,” Ms. Bhutto said of Mr. Khan, a cricket legend-turned-politician who has been billing himself as the face of change in Pakistan.

Ms. Bhutto accused Mr. Khan of defending the legacy of former dictator Gen. Zia-ul-Haq, who came to power in the late 1970s after overthrowing Prime Minister Zulfikar Ali Bhutto, Fatima’s grandfather and the founder of the country’s ruling Pakistan People’s Party. She also mentioned Mr. Khan’s support for a 2002 referendum allowing Gen. Pervez Musharraf, who had come to power with a coup a few years earlier, to extend his term.

That’s not where it ended. In what appeared to be a well-rehearsed argument to debunk the political credibility of the former cricket captain, Ms. Bhutto went on to list more reasons why she opposed his political foray.

As a woman I worry very much about Imran’s politics,” said Ms. Bhutto. She spoke of his opposition to amending a 2006 woman’s bill in favor of victims of rape. She also questioned Mr. Khan’s commitment to secularism and to defending minorities.

Is he a savior? No, I don’t think so,” said Ms. Bhutto during a Pakistan-focused session at the literary festival. ….

Read more » The Wall Street Journal (wsj)