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/

Interior Minister takes notice of Dean Jones’ Pakistan arrival without visa

ISLAMABAD (Dunya News) – Federal Interior Minister Chaudhry Nisar on Sunday took notice of Australian ex-cricketer Dean Jones for arriving in Pakistan without a valid visa and ordered action against the offending foreign airliner, Dunya News reported.

The federal minister said no foreigner can enter Pakistan without visa, adding that the time of blatant disregard of Pakistani laws without anyone noticing is over.

According to details, Chaudhry Nisar took strict notice of violation of the laws. He said Pakistan International Airline is made to adhere to laws in foreign countries, adding that foreign airlines must also adhere to the same laws.

The federal minister said that the action must be taken against violators even if it’s a foreign airline.

Directing strict action against the foreign airliner, Ch Nisar said the impression that the Interior Ministry can allow anyone into Pakistan without visa is strictly wrong, adding that no foreigner can enter Pakistan without proper documentation.

“Those desirous of traveling to Pakistan have to adhere to the international and Pakistani travel laws and regulations,” he said.

“The time has gone when rules and regulations were blatantly disregarded and no one cared.”

Read more » Dunya News Tv
See more » http://dunyanews.tv/en/Pakistan/313834-Interior-Minister-takes-notice-of-Dean-Jones-Paki

The False Savior of Pakistan

Pakistanis hope that the army’s new chief of staff, Raheel Sharif, will crack down on militants and boost security. But can one man change a corrupt legal system and prejudiced security infrastructure?

BY SUALIHA NAZAR

Pakistan has finally found a hero in General Raheel Sharif, the army’s chief of staff since November 2013. In a short time, he has become one of the most powerful and beloved men in the country. From Peshewar to Karachi, billboards and banners thank him for curbing terrorism. This adoration stems, in part, from his warnings that regional rival India will suffer “unbearable costs” if it causes mischief.

What truly catapulted General Sharif to stardom was Operation Zarb-e-Azb, an operation launched in June 2014 to eradicate militants from every corner of North Waziristan. The operation was to serve as an aggressive response to the deadly attack on Jinnah International Airport that occurred earlier that month, and gave new hope to a nation that had lost over 3,000 lives to terrorist attacks in 2013 alone.

Zarb-e-Azb signaled a strategic shift for Pakistan’s internal terrorism policies. The international community had long charged Pakistan with providing safe haven to select militants — those fighting in Afghanistan and who do not pose a direct threat to, and perhaps even support, the interests of Pakistan’s government– and Zarb-e-Azb attempted to prove that Pakistan was, in fact, targeting all militants equally. There would be no more turning a blind eye to the terrorist activities of “good” militants.

General Sharif does deserve a certain level of praise for increasing security. Not only have terrorist attacks in Pakistan dropped by 70 percent since 2012, but  Zarb-e-Azb made a significant impact on the terrorist groups Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan and Lashkar-e-Jhangvi through military operations to weaken safe havens and confiscate weapons — progress all of the general’s predecessors failed to achieve.

Yet, this success is tempered by accusations that the crackdown against these groups has ulterior motives. The most-targeted groups are ones known to oppose the Pakistani state. The international community has demanded a stricter crackdown on other groups, too, ones like the Haqqani network and the India-focused Lashkar-e-Taiba – neither of which Islamabad considers to be an anti-state actor in addition to a terrorist organization. Rather than tackling all of the militants in the area simultaneously, Pakistan is first eliminating anti-Pakistan groups before setting its sights on anti-U.S. or anti-India groups.

Read more » FP
See more » http://foreignpolicy.com/2015/12/18/the-false-savior-of-pakistan/

New railway tracks planned under CPEC: report

BY DAWN.COM

The government has planned major installation and upgradation of railway tracks under the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor, state-run websiteRadio Pakistan has reported.

Under the plan, new railway tracks will be laid from Gwadar to Quetta and Jacobabad via Besima.

Five hundred and sixty kilometres of track will be laid from Bostan to Kotla Jam on Main Line-II via Zhob and Dera Islamil Khan, while 682km of track will be laid from Havelian to Khunjrab, the state-run broadcaster’s website said.

Upgradation of 1,872km of railway track from Karachi to Peshawar via Kotri, Multan, Lahore, and Rawalpindi (including Taxila-Havelian) – along with dualisation of track from Shahdara to Peshawar – will also be carried out.

Some 1,254 kilometres of railway track from Kotri to Attock City via Dadu, Larkana, Jacobabad, DG Khan, Bhakkar, Kundian will also be upgraded.

The CPEC is a 3,000-kilometer network of roads, railways and pipelines to transport oil and gas from Gwadar Port to Kashgar city, northwestern China’s Xinjiang Uygur autonomous region.

Read more » DAWN
See more » http://www.dawn.com/news/1227664/

Of course ‘socialism’ was most-searched term of 2015: its ideas fit our times

Since the Occupy movement, the dirty word as far as many millennials are concerned is not socialism, but capitalism

By 

 

There is a decisive mood of resistance in America – a backlash to the status quo. The Bernie Sanders campaign for president is capturing that mood, and it is no surprise that ‘socialism’ was the most looked-up word in 2015.

The American youth of today did not grow up in the shadow of the Cold War. The vilification of socialist ideas by Republicans anyway only serves, if anything, to pique their interest. Coupled with that is the future most young Americans face: a low-wage job market, proliferation of student debt and an escalating housing affordability crisis. Since the Occupy movement, the dirty word as far as many millennials are concerned is not socialism, but capitalism.

There is deep anger against gaping income inequality and systemic racism. People are hungry for political alternatives that will serve their interests for a change instead of the insatiable greed of Wall Street.

Our city council re-election victory in Seattle, Washington, this fall is a powerful indicator of the prevailing mood. The first time our Socialist Alternative Partywon, in 2013, the political and business establishment did not take us seriously. But we have shown that not only can a socialist win in the US, a socialist can drive the political agenda of a major city. This time around, big business and their political representatives mobilized a massive campaign against us, fueled with large amounts of corporate cash, disingenuous attack mailers, red baiting and red herrings.

Read more » The Guardian
See more »  http://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2015/dec/19/socialism-definition-most-searched-word-of-2015?CMP=share_btn_fb