About five million Sindhis marched in Karachi and demanded United Nations and the world community for their intervention for the freedom of Sindh.
Numbers matter. Opinions matter more. If combined together, they determine a vast arena of matters. This is what one can say about the South Asia’s populist and the peaceful most freedom movement ongoing in Sindh. No doubt, the movement has been giving the sparkly glitz since last a few years.
On March 23, 2014, millions of Sindhi people from across the Sindh province held a ‘Freedom March for Sindh’ on the call of Jeay Sindh Qomi Mahaz (JSQM) in Karachi, the capital city of Sindh. They demanded “Independence of Sindh” by appealing the world community especially the United Nations, USA, UK, Russia, France and China for their ‘support and intervention” for the freedom of Sindh to attain its sovereign and independent country. It is worth mentioning here that JSQM is one of secular most political parties in Pakistan.
The march was held on the Republic Day of Pakistan on March 23, 2014. It was also held on the same day in 2012 and was attended by at least two million people. The popular most Sindhi nationalist leader of the last two decades, Bashir Qureshi who was Chairman of Jeay Sindh Qomi Mahaz (JSQM) was poisoned to death by Pakistan?s military establishment and died within a couple of week in April 2012 after holding the freedom march.
After his death, his son Sanan Qureshi, who is in his twenties, was elected as Chairperson of JSQM. Bashir Qureshi’s younger brother Maqsood Qureshi was already a member of GMist Council, the higher most forum of the organization.
ISLAMABAD: An armed man demanding the establishment of Islamic rule in Pakistan opened fire in the heavily policed heart of Islamabad on Thursday after slipping past the capital’s many checkpoints.
Security has been tight in Islamabad after police received an alert about possible attacks by militants operating from the tribal areas on Pakistan’s lawless border with Afghanistan.
As night fell, the unidentified man drove a black vehicle into the tightly guarded centre of Islamabad, stopped within a stone’s throw from the president’s official residence and opened fire in the air.
The gunman is said to have a Kalashnikov in his possession along with a submachine gun. A woman and two children are also reported to be in the car with him.
“I am against vulgarity and immorality. My associates have taken up positions in the whole of Pakistan,” he told a local TV channel.
Hundreds of onlookers gathered in the central Jinnah Avenue as night fell and periodic gunshots rang out in the air.
Checkpoints and police armed with assault rifles dot many major access points in Islamabad, where attacks have become rare in recent years.
Security has been tightened further in past weeks, particularly in the city centre where most government buildings and diplomatic missions are located.
Although he appeared to act on his own and seemed confused in his demands, it was unclear how the man, armed with at least two automatic rifles, managed to paralyse the city centre and cause a standoff with police including anti-terrorist units.
Police and other officials are speaking with the man in order to defuse the situation. So far he has refused to lay down his weapons.
The gunman has also threatened to target Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif.
This is a developing story and will be updated accordingly
SINDH: KARACHI, May 25: The Jeay Sindh Mahaz, alleging that resources of the province had been snatched from the Sindhis and outsiders were being brought in to turn the natives into a minority, demanded on Saturday that a referendum be held to determine if the Sindhis wanted to live in the present set-up or wished independence.
Speaking at a rally titled ‘Right of self-determination: our goal independence’ and organised by the JSM at the Karachi Press Club, JSM chief Abdul Khalique Junejo said that Pakistan came into being on the basis of the Lahore Resolution of 1940 under which sovereign and autonomous status of Sindh and other national units had been accepted, but after independence the country had been diverted in another direction.He alleged that first houses, properties and jobs of Sindhis were snatched, then their factories and lands were taken away and now they were being robbed of their natural resources, their water was being stolen, the Sindhi language was being deprived of its status and Sindhi culture was being humiliated. He said that outsiders were being brought in to turn the Sindhis into a minority on their own land and now some people were even demanding division of Sindh.
He said people were free to come, live and work here, but it should be understood that they would not be allowed to rule over Sindh — a right only the Sindhis had. He said Karachi is the capital and an integral part of Sindh and belonged to the Sindhis.
He said that keeping in view the situation it was high time that a sovereign status of Sindh be accepted and the right of self-determination — accepted by the United Nations as well as the Pakistan Resolution — of the Sindhis be given to them. He demanded that a referendum be held to know if the Sindhis wanted to live in the present set-up or wanted independence. Usman Baloch of the Awami Workers Party demanded that rights of the Sindhis be accepted.
ISLAMABAD: Lawmakers in the Upper House of the Parliament Thursday demanded action against former President General (retd) Pervez Musharraf for his crimes against constitution, democracy, political leadership and the nation.
They also demanded from the caretaker interior minister to inform the House how he escaped from the court to his residence and “why a former General could not be arrested if the elected prime ministers of the country can be sent to jails.”
Speaking on points of order, the senators claimed that double standard existed in the country in violation of the Constitution which considers every Pakistani equal before the law.
“We have been talking of the rule of law and independence of judiciary. But, today we have seen that it is easy to send an elected prime minister to jail but a former General and military dictator cannot be arrested,” remarked senior PPPP Senator Raza Rabbani.
“In Pervez Musharraf’s case it is test of time. When the court had ordered to arrest him, then why he was not arrested. It’s a question mark,” Rabbani added.
He charged Pervez Musharraf of involvement in the abetment of killing of Benazir Bhutto and Nawab Akbar Bugti, abrogating the constitution and house arresting the judges of superior judiciary.
“Musharraf is a usurper who twice abrogated the Constitution. He was announced to be arrested but he safely fled in connivance with state institutions. The caretaker government was responsible to arrest him and the interior minister should inform the House why the government had not fulfilled its obligations,” Rabbani said.
PPPP Senator Farhatullah Babar said he does not hold caretaker government responsible for his escape. “I have been looking the state apparatus very closely. There are two laws and double standards in the country. If we could not mend it over the time how we can hold the caretakers responsible for these double standards.”
Press release – Vientiane, Laos, October 2012 – Asia-Europe People’s Forum gathered 1000 citizens in Vientiane (Laos): “We demand a people-centered world not a system based around deregulation of markets and increasing power of multinational corporations”
At the 9th Asia Europe People’s Forum we focused on developing strategies and demands to the governments which meet at the 9th ASEM meeting in Laos in November.
Over 1000 citizens from Asia and Europe joined together from 16th to 19th October 2012 in Vientiane at the 9th Asia Europe People’s Forum. The AEPF9 tackled four
major themes, Universal Social Protection and Access to Essential Services; Food Sovereignty and Sustainable Land and Natural Resource Management; Sustainable Energy Production and Use; and Just Work and Sustainable Livelihoods.
Preceding the 9th Asia-Europe People’s Forum we held three preparatory workshops in South and South-East Asia. In Laos, 16 Provincial level consultations. These brought together the reflections, aspirations and visions of the Lao people from a wide range of civil society organisations.
The AEPF brought into sharp focus the drastic inequalities, injustices and poverty experienced by people across Asia and Europe. What is often presented as a ‘financial crisis’ is in reality part of a series of interlinked crises – food, energy, climate, human security and environmental degradation – that are already devastating the lives, and compounding the poverty and exclusion faced on a daily basis by millions across Asia and increasingly across Europe.
LONDON: The 24th International Conference on Sindh organised by World Sindhi Congress has called on the PPP government to revoke the controversial Sindh People’s Local Government Ordinance (SPLGO) as it’s a conspiracy against Sindh. The conference warned that actions of the PPP government had harmed Sindhis and had given too much influence to Muttahida Qaumi Movement (MQM).
The speakers said MQM is the sole beneficiary of this ordinance and allows the party to “rule Karachi and Hyderabad without any challenges”. The conference was attended by a large number of delegates from Sindh, UK, US, India and Europe. A keynote speech by Baloch leader Sardar Akhtar Mengal was the special feature of the moot.
The speakers advised all Sindhi nationalist parties to make Karachi centre of their political activities and believe in mass mobilisation of people. Sardar Akhtar Mengal said Sindhis gave huge mandate to PPP but in return it betrayed them and the recent local bodies act is the latest example. He said Sindhis should think beyond PPP.
Dr Lakhu Luhano said it was unprecedented time for Sindhi people in terms of danger and threat that never has existed to this level in the entire history of Sindh. Syed Jalal Shah said ground realities are very tough for Sindhis and called for a “fight back to repeal the act and take this struggle to wider demands of Sindhis”.
Hidayat Bhutto said Sindhis joined Pakistan based on the 1940 Resolution which clearly said, “Federating units shall be sovereign and independent” but that has not happened. “Since 1947, Sindh’s rights are being violated, its water is being diverted, its natural resources are used without any compensation and now its integrity is at stake,” he said.
Abidi held Justice Chaudhry responsible for the alleged financial impropriety done by his son, Dr Arsalan Iftikhar
While hurling fiery allegations at Chief Justice Iftikhar Muhammad Chaudhry, Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP) Senator Faisal Raza Abidi on Sunday demanded a resignation from him and other judges who were reinstated under the Provisional Constitutional Order (PCO).
During a press conference in Islamabad, Abidi held Justice Chaudhry responsible for the alleged financial impropriety done by his son, Dr Arsalan Iftikhar.
The senator said that if the chief justice does not tender a resignation, then he will “force him out from the same way he had been restored as a judge.”
“He [Justice Chaudhry] says that he did not have any idea where his son got all that money from…I ask, when the case emerged, did you ask him where he got Rs900 million from?”
The senator produced bank account statements of Dr Arsalan and said that the person who used to “work under somebody else” now owns billions of rupees. He also showed that the billing address mentioned was that of the Chief Justice House in Islamabad.
“You [Justice Chaudhry] are to be blamed for this. This happened right in front of you. You cannot pretend to not know anything. Who gave Dr Arsalan the right to use government’s property for running his own businesses? Could he not rent out an office in some other area?
SINDH – KARACHI, (SANA): A complete shutter-down strike has been observed in Sindh following the call by Jeay Sindh Qaumi Mahaz (JSQM) on Wednesday. The strike, which was supported by other nationalist parties, was called against the government delay in the chemical examination of viscera taken from the body of JSQM leader Bashir Qureshi. ….
…. The Jeay Sindh workers staged protest in Daharki where all the business centers remain closed while complete shutter down strike is being observed in all parts of the city including Bhutta Market, Railway Road. Several JSQM activists staged a sit-in protest at National Highway while police arrested 8 people. Situation has turned tense in the city while a heavy number of police force has been deployed in the city.
Meanwhile, shutter down strike is being observed in several cities and towns of the province including Jacobabad, Sukkur, Kashmore, Kandhkot and other cities. Incidents of firing and rumpus by the protesters were also reported in some areas of the province.
The JSQM leadership suspects that Bashir Qureshi was allegedly poisoned to death and doubts that the chemical examination reports at any government could be changed. They demanded that the post mortem (autopsy) reports should be got tested from Agha Khan Hospital or any other reputed facility.
Party leaders had demanded the government that the autopsy examination be obtained from a private hospital in order to determine the actual cause of death of Bashir Qureshi but the officials have failed to meet the demand as yet.
…. in Safora Goath in Karachi, leading to forced closure of business in the area. Also, some unidentified outlaws pelted traffic with stones on Maripur Road and blocked the same for traffic. …
Arsonists burnt tires on Minarah Road to block the flow of traffic in Sukkur and also resorted to aerial firing in many areas of the city to alarm people.
…. strike by JSQM, and the provincial government has put police force on high alert all over Sindh. …..
It was not long ago that a bill was tabled in the US Congress in support of giving Balochistan – the land of the Baloch – the right to self-determination against their ‘forced accession’ into Pakistan on March 27, 1948. The day is still mourned as a Black Day throughout the Baloch land, including parts of the provincial capital, Quetta.
In the year 1971, the erstwhile East Pakistan had already witnessed a bloody independence war with Pakistan, which culminated in the creation of the country now known as Bangladesh – it was a real bloody war since hundreds of thousands of people were massacred in this ‘genocide’ to crush the Bengali freedom-fighters.
In the present times, however, it is not just Balochistan which has the separatist sentiments, but Sindh under the leadership of Mr. G.M. Syed, has also been fighting for independence soon after the creation of Pakistan. From the platform of various nationalist political parties, Sindhis demand separation from Pakistan and creation of proposed, Sindhudesh, the Land of Sindhu (River Indus). They support their demand with the arguments that, 1., the British had invaded the independent Sindh and, 2. that they have a distinct rich history and secular culture which dates back to 5000 years. ….
KARACHI: As the people across the country celebrated Pakistan Day, hundreds of thousand people from Sindh gathered in Karachi on Friday and demanded freedom for Sindh and an independent status for Balochistan. This demand came in a ‘Freedom March’ rally organised by the Jeay Sindh Qaumi Mahaz (JSQM), a Sindhi nationalist party, led by Bashir Qureshi. ….
Promoting Sindhi through Media , Demanding our Right, Send this letter to Prime Minister of India.
Post Card Campaign — a unique campaign for 24×7 Sindhi DD channel is launched and Sindhi-speaking people across the globe would send a post card to Prime Minister of India Demanding our Right. Keep postcards ready on Cheti Chand (Sindhi Thanks giving day), Get signatures from Sindhi and post to PM of India.
We Sindhis are a gifted community, always addicted to success in everything we do. This time let us put all our might to save our Sindhi language and culture. The language of the video clip is Sindhi.
Hindu protesters demand justice for 17-year-old girl, who they believe was forcefully converted to Islam, Blame PPP MNA Mian Abdul Haq alias Mian Mitho for her ‘abduction’
KARACHI – A sizable crowd of Hindu protesters gathered outside the Karachi Press Club on Sunday, demanding justice for a 17-year-old Hindu girl from Mirpur Mathelo in Ghotki district, Rinkle Kumari, who was allegedly abducted forcefully converted to Islam and renamed Faryal.
The relatives of the girl, who were among the protesters, blame one man for her alleged predicament – Pakistan People’s Party MNA Mian Abdul Haq alias Mian Mitho, who is also the spiritual leader of Bharchundi Sharif in Daharki.
The girl’s relatives claimed that the girl fell in love with her neighbour Naveed Shah, whose friend Hussam Kalwar is a supporter of the MNA.
Kalwar, a criminal, has been arrested several times but always manages to get released due to his ties to the influential MNA.
Giving details about the night when Kumari was “abducted”, her uncle, Daya Ram, said in the early hours of February 24 this year, Kumari was supposed to meet Naveed Shah, believing that he would be alone. But Shah was not alone and accompanied by armed men, who abducted her and took her to Bharchundi Sharif, where she was forcefully converted to Islam.
“She did not leave home out of free will. If she had, why was one of her shoes at the home’s entrance and her dupatta outside? She was kidnapped by armed men, who barged into the home,” Ram told Pakistan Today.
He further said on the morning of February 24, he reached the Mirpur Mathelo police station and had an FIR registered against Naveed Shah.
On the same day at 1 pm, Kumari’s family received a phone call from MNA Haq’s son Mian Aslam Shah, who told them that if they wish to meet the girl, they should come to his residence.
However, Ram claimed, the family told him that they do not wish to meet her at his residence and would instead want her brought to the DSP’s office or the Hindu Panchayat Hall, where she can talk with them freely. However, both these options were rejected.
Ram said the next day, Kumari’s family was told that they can meet the girl at the Ghotki DSP’s office, but they would have to come along with Jeay Sindh Mahaz Chairman Riaz Chandio.
When Chandio and the girl’s family entered the office of the DSP, they saw that Mian Shaman, the brother of the PPP MNA, was seated on the chair of the DSP. The family again refused to talk with the girl in Shaman’s presence and was again given an option that they can meet her in the presence of Naveed Shah. The family did not accept the offer and went to the Ghotki civil judge.
The first time Kumari met her family after the “abduction” was in the court. She told her family in the presence of counsels from both sides that she was kidnapped. “Some people entered our home and kidnapped me. I did not want to leave with Naveed Shah,” Kumari’s uncle quoted her as saying.
At that moment, Ram said, Naveed Shah fainted and the judge, instead of letting the recording of her statement complete, remanded Kumari to police custody for two days.
“At the Sukkur police station, a policewoman handed her a cell phone on which she was threatened that if she did not change her statement, she and her relatives will be killed and the property of all Hindus in the area will be demolished,” Ram claimed.
“When Rinkle was brought to the court again, she was confused and upset and asked us to forgive her and allow her to sacrifice herself for our sake,” he added.
He said on February 26, President Asif Ali Zardari took notice of the incident and police again “kidnapped” Kumari and at 2 pm, she was shifted to Mirpur Mathelo from Sukkur.
On February 27, the day when Kumari had to appear in the court again, all routes to the court were blocked, but not for the “fanatic” followers of the MNA.
“If Rinkle was acting out of her own will, then why was she surrounded by armed men at the court?” Daya Rama questioned.
During the second hearing, Kumari gave a statement in favour of Naveed Shah and the court ordered her to be given into his custody.
In response to the family’s allegations, MNA Haq’s son Mian Aslam Shah has claimed that the couple had come to him seeking help and the girl wanted to convert to Islam so she could marry Shah.
MPA Petamber Sehwani, during the Sindh Assembly session on February 29, said Hindus’ daughters are being kidnapped and boys killed. “They are being forced to leave Sindh. But I want to make it clear that the Hindus of Sindh will not leave their motherland. Do not push us to the wall,” he said.
The pirs or spiritual leaders of Bharchundi Sharif have a history of religious extremism. On November 2, 1939, a famous Hindu Sufi singer Bhagat Kanwar Ram was killed in a train while travelling to Sukkur. The FIR of the murder was registered against MNA Haq’s father, Mian Abdul Rahim and his two followers.
KARACHI, March 4: An alliance of minority parties on Sunday appealed to Chief Justice of Pakistan Iftikhar Mohammad Chaudhry to take a suo motu notice of the kidnapping of a Hindu girl and order her immediate return to her parents to restore the waning sense of security in the minorities.
Speaking at a protest demonstration staged outside the Karachi Press Club, Pakistan Minority Leaders Alliance representatives said they would launch a protest movement and stage a sit-in on March 10 if the authorities failed to recover the girl, Rinkle Kumari.
According to an uncle of the girl, Raj Kumar, she was kidnapped from her house in Mirpur Mathelo over a week ago and forced to marry Naveed Shah and change her religion. He alleged that the case was heard by a civil judge in Ghotki, but he did not allow her relatives to enter the courtroom while giving a verdict in favour of the ‘kidnapper’, Mr Shah.
Speaking on the occasion, Jeay Sindh Mahaz chief Riaz Chandio expressed solidarity with the minority community members and demanded arrest of and punishment to culprits involved in her kidnapping.
He said those belonging to religious minority groups, including Hindus, Christians and Sikhs, were sons of the soil. They should not feel threatened by such acts, as all Sindhis were one and that they were equal citizens and had equal rights, he said.
He said it was unfortunate that the girl was given in police custody instead of being sent to Darul Aman.
Mr Chandio announced that if “the daughter of Sindh” was not rescued and returned and culprits were not arrested soon and punished according to law, a province-wide sit-it would be staged on Saturday.
Manohar Lal, Muttahida Qaumi Movement lawmaker in the national assembly, condemned the kidnapping and forced conversion of a young girl. He urged the president to take notice of the incident.
He said Islam guaranteed protection to minorities, but such people were giving a bad name to the religion. With such incidents, a sense of insecurity was growing in the community, he said. Earlier their sons were kidnapped for ransom, but now their daughters were being kidnapped and forcibly converted, he remarked.
Jeay Sindh Taraqi Pasand Party leader Gulzar Soomro said that forced conversions were a conspiracy against Islam, which preaches love and peace and opposes use of force. He said the culprits were agents of the establishment that wanted to divide the Sindhis.
“Our patience should not be mistaken as our weakness,” he warned, seeking her immediate recovery.
A Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf leader and former lawmaker, Michael Javed, said the Quaid-i-Azam had said that the minorities would be equal citizens in Pakistan, but over the years the Quaid’s message was being forgotten.
Amar Lal, a community leader, said he and the girl’s uncle had met US consulate general staff a few days back and political counsellor Junaid J. Muneer had assured him that the issue would be taken up with the authorities concerned. He said he had also received a call from a former political counsellor of the US embassy in Islamabad, L.K. Robinson, who was currently in Washington. He told him that he would take up the issue with human rights organisations there.
Mahesh Singh, Mangla Sharma, Ramesh Kumar, Vijay Kumar and others also spoke.
Raj Kumar, the girl’s uncle, earlier informed the gathering that on Feb 24, a few armed men barged into her home in Mirpur Mathelo and kidnapped her at gunpoint.
He said a case was filed in a Ghotki court where he said she gave a statement about the threats she had received to convert and marry Naveed Shah or she and her entire family would be killed. He quoted her as saying in the court that she wanted to return and live with her parents.
He also alleged that the judge, in the presence of gunmen in the court, sent her to police custody rather than to her parents’ home or to a shelter home. The next hearing was scheduled to be held at 11am on Feb 27, but the case was heard at 8.15am and the girl’s family was not allowed to enter the courtroom, he said, adding that the judge then gave a verdict in favour of Mr Shah.
Mr Kumar urged the chief justice to take a suo motu notice of the issue and order her safe return to her parents.
Earlier, the participants in the demonstration chanted slogans such as ‘we want justice’ and ‘Rinkle be rescued’.
The memo gate Commission’s order of providing security to an American citizen, Mansoor Ijaz, by the Army battalion is ridiculous. The CC of CPP discussed this issue at party Central Secretariat today on 22-1-2012 and strongly protested on it. From: Engineer Jameel Ahmad Malik, Central Chairman of CPP.
Three U.S. senators are calling on the Pakistani government and judiciary to protect former Pakistani Ambassador to Washington Husain Haqqani, who they say has been the victim of “ongoing harassment and mistreatment” since resigning late last year due to the Memogate scandal.
“We are increasingly troubled by Ambassador Haqqani’s treatment since he returned home to Pakistan, including the travel ban imposed on him,” said Sens. John McCain (R-AZ), Joe Lieberman (I-CT), and Mark Kirk (R-IL) in a Thursday statement. “Like many in Washington, we are closely following Ambassador Haqqani’s case. We urge Pakistani authorities to resolve this matter swiftly and consistent with civilian rule of law and to prevent the judicial commission investigating Ambassador Haqqani from becoming a political tool for revenge against an honorable man.” ….
DHAKA: A senior Bangladeshi official on Sunday urged Pakistan to formally apologize for alleged atrocities and acts of genocide committed by the Pakistani military during the independence war in 1971.
Foreign Affairs Minister Dipu Moni made the demand in a meeting with Pakistan’s new envoy to Bangladesh, a statement released by the ministry said.
Aided by India, Bangladesh, then the eastern wing of Pakistan, won its independence in 1971 after a nine-month war.
Bangladesh says Pakistani soldiers, aided by local collaborators, killed an estimated 3 million people, raped about 200,000 women and forced millions to flee their homes. Pakistan has disputed the allegations. …
– In a press statement issued today [July 16, 2011], World Sindhi Congress (WSC) strongly condemned the barbaric massacre of innocent people in recent clashes in the major cities of Sindh including Karachi and Hyderabad.
The killings started when Sindh Assembly withdrawn the so-called Local Government system and restored Commissionerate system in Sindh. The local government system was imposed by force by the military dictator General Musharaf against the popular wishes, demands and struggle of Sindhi people. The system completely undermined the historical, political, social, economic and educational rights of Sindhi people. Under the patronage of this system the complete control of the urban centres was handed over to Muttahida Qaumi Movement (MQM). The historical Hyderabad district was divided in four districts, five districts of Karachi were amalgamated in one, other districts were also divided. Most districts were handed over to criminal feudals to punish Sindhi people and suffocate their social and economic progress. As a result of this system the entry to educational institutions and jobs in the urban areas, particularly in Karachi was systematically denied to Sindhi people, Sindhi villages in Karachi were bulldozed and Sindhis were forced to live and suffer one of the worst apartheid in their own land.
The first thing that all Sindhi people hoped and demanded from Peoples Party was to abandon the draconian local government system when they came in power on the almost unanimous vote of Sindhi people. Unfortunately Peoples Party failed to deliver for three and half years on this issue of utmost significance for Sindhi people resulting from their compromise with MQM to remain in power at the any cost. MQM was and is the strongest supporter of this system as it provided them a disproportionate and complete hegemony over Karachi and Hyderabad.
The withdrawal of the local government system was completed in all other parts of Pakistan almost a year ago. It was kept only in Sindh at the sole insistence of MQM. It was withdrawn from Sindh by an over-whelming majority of Sindh Assembly. All parties in the Sindh Assembly except MQM supported the changes. In all the democratic sprits and norms MQM should have accepted this verdict as it was a unanimous demand of Sindhi people and democratically passed by an overwhelming majority of Sindh Assembly. However, it is really unfortunate to see how MQM has reacted violently and undemocratically. Consequently the situation is very sad as it has resulted in the massacre of scores of innocent men, women and children.
WSC condemn the irresponsible statements of Zulfiqar Mirza which were divisive and aimed to flame the riots among people of Sindh. ….
Sindhis have thousands year old traditions and civilisation of tolerance and peace and have demonstrated this times and time again. Sadly MQM in spite of their proclamations that they are sons of Sindh, have demonstrated through their actions that they only represent the narrow and many-times anti-Sindh ethnic interests ….
KARACHI: Claiming that the 18th constitutional amendment has robbed the provinces of their rights and the centre has become stronger at the cost of the provinces, Sindhi nationalists have demanded that the centre surrender all provincial subjects to the provinces.
This claim was made by Sindh United Party President Syed Jalal Mehmoud Shah and the Sindh Dost Democratic Party chief Barrister Zamir Ghumro at a press conference at the Karachi Press Club on Tuesday. Other nationalists leaders who were present on the occasion included Shah Muhammad Shah, Dr Dodo Mehri, Ghulam Shah and Shahnaz Shah.
Reading out from a joint statement, Mr Shah said the parliamentary committee on the 18th amendment on the pretext of abolition of the concurrent list had taken away purely provincial subjects, including electricity, professions such as medical and engineering, and criminal law for the first time and had increased the entries of the federal lists from 67 to 74. …
WASHINGTON / ISLAMABAD: The US is rejecting demands from Pakistan that American personnel abandon a military base used by the CIA to stage drone strikes against militants, US officials told Reuters.
US personnel have not left the Shamsi air base and there is no plan for them to do so, said a US official familiar with the matter. “That base is neither vacated nor being vacated,” the official said. The information was confirmed by a second US official.
On Wednesday, federal Minister for Defence Chaudhry Ahmed Mukhtar said that US had been asked to stop using the base for drone strikes and vacate it. ….
Blood, Justice And Corruption: Why The Chinese Love Their Death Penalty
Editorial: There’s nothing that the Chinese people hate more than a corrupted official. But the government should do more to root out corruption than play to the public’s basest instincts for revenge. Still, don’t expect China’s death penalty to disappear anytime soon.
By Teng Biao
Of all the criminal cases in China, those involving corrupt officials sentenced to death arouse the greatest interest. The morbid examples abound: from the public cheering for the recent death sentences for the two deputy mayors of Suzhou and Hangzhou to the executions of the head of the State Food and Drug Administration, of the Secretary of Justice of Chongqing City, and of the vice chairman of the Standing Committee of the National People’s Congress.
China is the global leader for the number of corrupt officials who are sentenced to death, and actually executed each year. But, judging by the seemingly endless “public demand” for this kind of punishment and the surging popular anger, it would seem that there is actually not enough of it. While so many people are “beheaded,” executives at all levels are still determined to brave death by trying to make the most of corruption. …
– Obama Sees ’67 Borders as Starting Point for Peace Deal
By MARK LANDLER and STEVEN LEE MYERS
WASHINGTON — President Obama, seeking to capture a moment of epochal change in the Arab world, began a new effort on Thursday to break the stalemate in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, setting out a new starting point for negotiations on the region’s most intractable problem.
A day before the arrival in Washington of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu of Israel, Mr. Obama declared that the prevailing borders before the 1967 Arab-Israeli war — adjusted to some degree to account for Israeli settlements in the West Bank — should be the basis of a deal. While the 1967 borders have long been viewed as the foundation for a peace agreement, Mr. Obama’s formula of land swaps to compensate for disputed territory created a new benchmark for a diplomatic solution.
Mr. Obama’s statement represented a subtle, but significant shift, in American policy. And it thrust him back into the region’s most nettlesome dispute at a time when conditions would seem to make reaching a deal especially difficult.
The Israeli government immediately protested, saying that for Israel to return to its pre-1967 borders would leave it “indefensible.” Mr. Netanyahu held an angry phone conversation with Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton on Thursday before the speech, officials said, in which he demanded that the president’s reference to 1967 borders be cut.
Israeli officials continued to lobby the administration until right before Mr. Obama arrived at the State Department for the address. White House officials said he did not alter anything under Israeli pressure ….
WASHINGTON — The United States and Pakistan are veering toward a deeper clash, with Pakistan’s Parliament demanding a permanent halt to all drone strikes just as the most senior American official since the killing of Osama bin Laden is to arrive with a stern message that the country has only months to show it is committed to rooting out Al Qaeda and associated groups. ….
ISLAMABAD: PML-N Chief Nawaz Sharif refused to attend Friday’s in-camera joint session of the parliament in protest against the increasing role of the ISI and army in politics.
During Friday’s in-house session,the army chief is due to brief the legislators on the U.S. strike in the Garrison city of Abbottabad and answer their questions.
The military command is said to be taking this parliamentary briefing a lot more seriously than the one it had given about the Swat operation two years ago.
Although Sharif is not a legislator, he was especially invited by the Prime Minister to attend Friday’s briefing. However, the PML-N chief said he declined the invitation, adding that Pakistan will not be able to progress unless the role of the ISI and Army is restricted.
Life can be lonely on the high seas and one pirate has decided enough is enough, it’s about time he got himself a wife.
But the Somali pirate chief has taken a fancy to his 13-year-old Danish hostage – and he is so besotted with her he’s willing to let the rest of her family go free, and even forget the $5 million dollar ransom his pirate colleagues demanded.
According to The Times, the pirate made the bizarre proposal during a conversation with a Danish reporter, who visited the African nation to track down the Johansen family who were taken hostage in the Indian Ocean more than a month ago.
Power concedes nothing without a demand. It never did and it never will. – Frederick Douglass
By Ghulam Mustafa Lakho
The best constitutional, non-violent and peaceful way to win the right of EQUAL CITIZENSHIP is to DEMAND repeal of the STATE RELIGION from the Constitution. I have the honor to propose “INTERNATIONAL DAY AGAINST STATE RELIGION.” Let us fix the 11th day of August as “INTERNATIONAL DAY AGAINST STATE RELIGION.” I hope that the foundation of such Day (IDASR) will set individuals and groups in motion to openly express their views against the State Religion. Let us urge all the countries of Europe and all the other civilized nations around the world including United Nations to recognize this DAY.
NEW DELHI: The UPA-opposition confrontation over the latter’s demand for a parliamentary probe into the spectrum scam will now spill over to the streets, with the BJP-led NDA on Tuesday announcing plans for nation-wide rallies on the issue of massive corruption in 2G spectrum and other scams.
The opposition attempt is to ensure that the issue remains alive in the three months before Parliament reassembles for the budget session. BJP veteran L K Advani made it clear that NDA would not relent on its demand for JPC probe, saying that the attempt should be to get to the money trail rather than just sack some ministers.
HRCP -Lahore, August 23: The Human Rights Commission of Pakistan (HRCP) has slammed as entirely inappropriate and mischievous the demand by the head of a political party for the military to “take any martial law-type action
KARACHI, SINDH: The Sindh Assembly on Oct 13, 2009 unanimously adopted a private resolution demanding the Federal Government to give ownership rights to the Sindh on oil and gas produced in the province.
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