Pakistan, India can’t live as enemies, says PM

By SALEEM SHAHID

ZHOB: Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif has invited India to hold dialogue with Pakistan on all issues, saying the two countries cannot live as enemies.

“Pakistan and India will have to resolve all issues amicably and in a comprehensive way,” he said while addressing a foundation stone-laying ceremony for the western route of the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) project here on Wednesday.

Read more » DAWN
See more » http://www.dawn.com/news/1229802/

National Health Insurance Scheme to cover 100 million Pakistanis

By APP

ISLAMABAD: Prime Minister Mian Muhammad Nawaz Sharif on Thursday approved the National Health Insurance Scheme aimed at providing health care to some 100 million people in Pakistan.

The prime minister chaired a meeting to give in principle approval to launch the Health Insurance Program. The meeting was attended by Minister for Finance Ishaq Dar, Chairperson PM’s Youth Program Maryam Nawaz, Minister of State for Health Saira Afzal Tarrar, and senior officers of the health and finance ministries.

Maryam Nawaz, the architect of the scheme, gave a detailed briefing to the Prime Minister in which comparative study of major health blanket models of the European Union, United States and India and options for implementing the scheme in Pakistan were discussed.

“A health insurance programme is the only way forward to provide health care protection to economically deprived people of the society. The scheme is the first of its kind to introduce a grievance redressal system as well as social security safety net for the poor people of Pakistan,” he said.

PM Sharif said the programme will not only give the vulnerable sections of the society an access to cash free health facilities but will also help to develop and revolutionise the health infrastructure across Pakistan.

The prime minister further said the scheme will also increase public-private partnership in Pakistan and will open up further avenues for investment.”

The scheme would be completely apolitical and would provide a blanket for cash free treatment to the poor people of Pakistan for major diseases like cardiovascular diseases, diabetes mellitus and complications, burns and RTA (life and limb saving treatment, implants, prosthesis), end stage renal diseases and dialysis, chronic infections (hepatitis), organ failure (hepatic, renal, cardiopulmonary) and cancer treatment.

The meeting also decided to establish the first ever public sector human organ transplant center in Islamabad.

The prime minister directed the Ministries of Finance and Health to coordinate and finalise the technical modalities and implementation strategy in minimum possible time so that an early relief could be given to the people.

News courtesy: DAWN
Read more » http://www.dawn.com/news/1110761

Germany to India: ‘Pakistan and India are more alike than different’

BY MORTEN HÜBBE

This is the travel blog of backpackers Rochssare Neromand-Soma (28) and Morten Hübbe (30) who met at the same university in Germany, where they both studied Literature and Media. They finished school in 2011 and started travelling immediately.

Their journey started with a trip to South America. They planned it as a six-month visit but ended up falling in love with the warm people and the breathtaking beauty of the region. It all started with hitchhiking (which is really common in Argentina and Chile) and enjoyed it so much that they kept travelling until they had discovered the entire continent.

They ended up staying back for over two years, and had by then, hitchhiked more than 50.000 kilometers, mostly with truck drivers. On the way, they met a Frenchman who told them about his hitchhiking adventures in Europe. He went from Paris to Istanbul all in just four days. This impressed the couple enough to decide to hitchhike all the way from Germany to India.

Now they are in Nepal. And look forward to travelling throughout the country before proceeding to their next destination. Read Part-I, II and III here. You can also follow them on Facebook and Instagram.

Read more » DAWN
See more » http://www.dawn.com/news/1229171/

Growing up under Communist rule made me the tough feminist I am today

By Klentiana Mahmutaj

I am a child of communism. I was born in Communist Albania in the late seventies and was raised there until the age of 19 when I secured a scholarship to study at an English university. I am now a practising barrister in capitalist Britain and a mother of a two-and-a–half-year-old child, regularly facing the challenges that come with being a full-time working mother who seeks to succeed in a challenging profession.  Inspired by the ongoing debate on women’s inequalities, I have recently reflected on my own childhood politics and have come to the surprising conclusion that the place to look for solutions to gender inequality is the Communist model.

Read more » Telegraph.co.uk
See more » http://www.telegraph.co.uk/women/life/growing-up-under-communist-rule-made-me-the-tough-feminist-i-am/

 

THATTO DUAL CARRIAGEWAY PROJECT USHER IN NEW VISTAS OF INVESTMENT

KARACHI: Sindh Chief Minister Syed Qaim Ali Shah has said that Thatta-Karachi Dualway Carriage would be a mile stone in the development of the province.

He said that he is committed with people and leadership to develop Sindh and create congenial atmosphere for investment in industrial sector, particularly in Thar coal filed.

He was addressing the signing ceremony of financing agreement Thatta – Karachi Dual Carriageway Project at the CM House here on Tuesday, said a statement.

He said that building infrastructure and commitment of providing better road network, the Works and Services Department in association with Sindh Public Private Partnership Unit is going to launch Karachi- Thatta Dual Carriageway Project.

The project is most important artery in the Province from Karachi to Thatta and a larger economic benefit of this Project is linked with connecting this corridor from Thatta towards Thar for Thar coal filed, he added.

Read more » Business Recorder
See more » http://www.brecorder.com/pakistan/politics-a-policy/270302-thatta-dual-carriageway-project-usher-in-new-vistas-of-investment.html

India may purchase Russia’s newest S-400 air defense systems – report

New Delhi has given the green light to purchase several Russian-made S-400 air defense systems, local media report. Indian military could become the second country in the world after China to procure state-of-the-art S-400s.

On Friday, the Defense Acquisition Council (DAC) chaired by India’s Defense Minister Manohar Parrikar cleared the purchase 5 regimental units of the S-400 from Russia, the Economic Timesreports. The deal is expected to be sealed within days to come during Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s visit to Moscow next week.

Defense Ministry sources told the Economic Times that the fast-tracked decision is to strengthen the country’s air defense capabilities. The cost of the deal was not disclosed so far, though the source said it will “happen shortly thereafter.”

Rough estimates suggest the air defense systems alone will cost India about 400 billion rupees (around $6 billion).

Read more » RT
See more » https://www.rt.com/news/326593-india-purchase-russian-s400/

Bazaar-i-Husn, formerly Sundarta Bazaar of Hyderabad, Sindh, Pakistan.

Footprints: Bazaar-i-Husn ─ Dark love

BY REEMA ABBASI

THEY have alluring names — Shahi Mohalla, Bulbul-i-Hazaar Dastaan, and Hyderabad’s Bazaar-i-Husn, formerly Sundarta Bazaar — old settlements where the business of flesh hangs on despite the ravages of circumstance. Continue reading Bazaar-i-Husn, formerly Sundarta Bazaar of Hyderabad, Sindh, Pakistan.

Dutch city plans to pay citizens a ‘basic income’, and Greens say it could work in the UK

By  in Utrecht

It’s an idea whose adherents over the centuries have ranged from socialists to libertarians to far-right mavericks. It was first proposed by Thomas Paine in his 1797 pamphlet, Agrarian Justice, as a system in which at the “age of majority” everyone would receive an equal capital grant, a “basic income” handed over by the state to each and all, no questions asked, to do with what they wanted.

Read more » The guardian

Prescription from Pakistan: How one hospital is a model for Asia

Pakistan’s dismal public health system is rife with mismanagement and a paucity of resources.

Amidst this shambolic system, one hospital in Karachi has been providing specialised healthcare to millions.

Free of charge.

As the Sindh Institute of Urology and Transplantation celebrated 40 years of successful service, Dr Sanjay Nagral visited the facility and met the man who helms it, armed with the simple philosophy that ‘No person should die only because they are unable to afford medical expenses.’

Read more » Rediff News
See more » http://www.rediff.com/news/special/prescription-from-pakistan-how-one-hospital-is-a-model-for-asia/20151224.htm

Zimbabwe to adopt Chinese yuan as legal currency after debt cancellation

In an unprecedented move that signals China’s growing global influence, Zimbabwe has announced that it will adopt the Chinese currency as legal tender.

The announcement came after China cancelled $40-million (U.S.) in Zimbabwean debt earlier this week. China is already Zimbabwe’s biggest trading partner, and Beijing is often praised by the Zimbabwean government, which has adopted a “Look East” policy after years of sanctions by Western governments.

While the decision to adopt the Chinese yuan as legal tender next month is largely a political message by an anti-Western government, it also illustrates China’s economic power in Africa, where Beijing has rapidly become a major investor and the continent’s biggest trading partner.

Read more » The Globe and Mail
See more » http://www.theglobeandmail.com/report-on-business/international-business/african-and-mideast-business/zimbabwe-to-adopt-chinese-yuan-as-legal-currency-after-debt-cancellation/article27914154/

China, Pakistan ink $2 billion deal to build power plant in Sindh

BEIJING: China and Pakistan today signed a $2 billion agreement to jointly build a massive coal- fired power station in Pakistan’s southern Sindh province.
See more » The Economic Times
Learn more »  http://economictimes.indiatimes.com/news/international/business/china-pakistan-ink-2-billion-deal-to-build-power-plant-in-sindh/articleshow/50273768.cms?from=mdr

Shelter for abandoned animals opens in Karachi

BY SHAZIA HASAN

KARACHI: A three-legged dog greets you at the bright red gate of the newly-opened ACF Animal Shelter in Mujahid Colony, Dalmia, and hops alongside you as if it wants to show you around the facility.

There is a donkey inside the fenced lawn, munching away at marigolds. Just like a toddler, a puppy inside his pen drags along a big teddy bear. At the shelter’s launch on Sunday the once abandoned animals are learning to trust humans again as they receive gentle pats and lots of love from the guests.

One of the guests, well-known veterinarian Dr Abrar Pirzada, who appreciated the efforts of the lady behind the good work, Ayesha Chundrigar, and her team of volunteers, also had some suggestions.

Read more » DAWN
See more » http://www.dawn.com/news/1227696/

Envoys from 13 countries visit Ancient Sindhi civilization site of Moej-Jo-Daro.

13 envoys visit Moenjodaro

LARKANO: Ambassadors of 13 countries and high commissioners (HCs) along with their families visited Moenjodaro on Sunday in a delegation.

Officials of India, Japan, Russia, Germany, Austria, Sri Lanka, Australia, Argentina, Portugal, Afghanistan and other countries accompanied Sharmila Farooqi, adviser to the chief minister on culture, at the site. They went round the giant archaeological site where archeology director general Qasim Ali Qasim briefed them.

He told them that it was a bigger civilisation which could be compared with Egypt and Iraq civilisations.

Read more » DAWN
See more » http://www.dawn.com/news/1227736/

22 wind power projects in pipeline

PARVAIZ ISHFAQ RANA

KARACHI: Wind power generation capacity of the country is projected to increase from 250 to 1,530MW within a year as 22 windmill projects are in the pipeline.

The cheap and environmental-friendly wind energy, introduced late in Pakistan, is gaining popularity as it ensures quick return in a short cycle of three years.

Sources in the Ministry of Water and Power told Dawn that Pakistan has a 1,046km coastline in the South (Sindh and Balochistan), but most of the wind power projects are currently being installed at Gharo-Keti Bander and Hyderabad wind corridor.

Official sources said that nine wind turbine generator (WTG) projects are in advanced stage of development, while the other nine are under-construction and four have got their letters of intent (LoIs). Many more are under process and documentation. The estimated energy pot­ential of the wind corridor is 50,000MW. Besides Gharo, sev­eral other sites have been identified in coastal areas of Balochistan and Northern areas.

Read more » DAWN
See more » http://www.dawn.com/news/1227553/

Visual Karachi: From Paris of Asia, to City of Lights, to Hell on Earth

BY NADEEM F. PARACHA

Clustered diversity

Karachi confuses people – sometimes even those who live in it.

The capital of Pakistan’s Sindh province, it is the country’s largest city – a colossal, ever-expanding metropolis with a population of about 20 million (and growing).

It is also the country’s most ethnically diverse city. But over the last three decades this diversity largely consists of bulky groups of homogenous ethnic populations that mostly reside in their own areas of influence and majority, only interacting and intermingling with other ethnic groups in the city’s more neutral points of economic and recreational activity.

That’s why Karachi may also give the impression of being a city holding various small cities. Cities within a city.

Read more » DAWN
See more » http://www.dawn.com/news/1134284

Pew Report: The American middle class is shrinking & standards of living are slipping. 

The American Middle Class Is Losing Ground
No longer the majority and falling behind financially

After more than four decades of serving as the nation’s economic majority, the American middle class is now matched in number by those in the economic tiers above and below it. In early 2015, 120.8 million adults were in middle-income households, compared with 121.3 million in lower- and upper-income households combined, a demographic shift that could signal a tipping point, according to a new Pew Research Center analysis of government data.1

Read more »  PewResearchCenter

Chenab: Pakistan’s river of love

I like to view my life as multiple voyages: the first is a physical one that requires me to walk the earth, the second is a journey from known to unknown. There is another journey that leaves one emotionally fatigued, and it is a need to form and nurture relationships.For me, the thought of new voyages is very refreshing. The North Wind holds you in thrall at your first visit (to the northern areas of Pakistan); subsequently, it keeps whispering in your ear to come back. You remember the blue sky of the day, the black cloak of the night embroidered with glittering stars, and the breeze dancing over the river in summertime; its scent can leave you intoxicated.

Read more » DAWN
See more » http://www.dawn.com/news/1219865/

Pakistan is tolerate society and one of the least racist countries in the world: Survey

Pakistan one of the least racist countries in the world: Survey

Pakistan has been ranked as one of the least racist countries in the world, according to a report in the Washington Post.

Data tabulated from the World Values Survey, compiled by two Swedish economists, implied that Pakistanis was among the more racially tolerant countries.

The surveyors asked respondents in more than 80 different countries to identify the sorts of people they would not wish to have as neighbours. Some replied, “people of a different race.” It was concluded that this question could serve as an accurate indicator of racial tolerance in different countries.

Read more » The Express Tribune
See more » http://tribune.com.pk/story/550216/pakistan-one-of-the-least-racist-countries-in-the-world-survey/

Karachi like rest of Sindh rejected right-wing -religious politics

Next Karachi mayor likely to be from MQM — PTI, JI face setback

KARACHI: Following days of electioneering, canvassing and political debates, the day for local bodies election in Karachi came to an end and vote count in the polling stations is underway, ARY News reported.

The trend so far shows that Muttahida Qaumi Movement (MQM) is likely to bring next Karachi mayor as the party has secured majority of seats in the local government elections.

The polling began at 7.30am and ended 5.30pm without any break.

The election were held in six districts of Karachi – District Central, District West, District Korangi, District East, District South and District Malir.

Read more » ARY News
See more » http://arynews.tv/en/polling-karachi-local-bodies-election-government/

Pakistan’s contrary years (1971-1977): A cultural history of the Bhutto era

BY NADEEM F. PARACHA

Modern cultural historians have usually defined the 1970s as being one of the most implosive decades of the 20th century.

Their fascination with the 1970s has continued to this day — they describe the era as a period in modern history in which various contemporary ideologies of the left and the right fought their most decisive battles.

The 1970s were no different in Pakistan as well.

Flamboyant and edgy, here too, the prominent veneer of freewheeling cultural brashness and populism of the decade finally mutated and triggered social profligacy and economic downturns that (by the late 1970s) eventually gave way (around the world) to the emergence of starker forces of the ‘New Right’. Who, in turn, would go on to redefine global politics and society from the 1980s onwards.

The cultural and political flamboyance of the 1970s eventually collapsed on itself.

Incidentally (and rather aptly), the 1970s in Pakistan were dominated by one of the country’s most enigmatic, flamboyant and contradictory politicians ever: ZA Bhutto.

Read more » DAWN
See more » http://www.dawn.com/news/1223761

Cow is safer in India than a Muslim: Shashi Tharoor

By PTI

NEW DELHI: Congress leader Shashi Tharoor today quoted some “Bangladeshi friend” to contend that a “cow is safer in India than a Muslim” to suggest “growing intolerance” in the country.

Participating in the debate on intolerance in the Lok Sabha, he said the Modi government cannot promote ‘Make in India’ while there is “hate in India”.
Read more » The Economic Times
http://economictimes.indiatimes.com/news/politics-and-nation/cow-is-safer-in-india-than-a-muslim-shashi-tharoor/articleshow/50002191.cms
Read more at:
http://economictimes.indiatimes.com/articleshow/50002191.cms?utm_source=contentofinterest&utm_medium=text&utm_campaign=cppst