Sindh waits for Islamabad’s nod to launch drive against banned outfits

BY HASAN MANSOOR

KARACHI: The provincial government is waiting for guidelines from the federal government to launch action against banned organisations, which are working with new names in Sindh, it emerged on Sunday.

“The Ministry of Interior (MoI) has been requested to provide a list of the religious outfits, which are banned but reemerging under the changed nomenclature,” said a senior official in the provincial home department while speaking to Dawn.

He said the MoI was to send policy guidelines. However, till the specific directives arrived, he added, the hierarchy of the Pakistan Rangers, Sindh, and the inspector general of police, Sindh, had been requested to take action against the outlawed outfits.

“Such organisations should not be allowed to hold public gatherings and meetings but they are openly active across the province,” admitted the official.

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Delhi to Karachi: A tale of two homelands

By Aman Bharti / KS Bharti / Creative: Maryam Rashid

‘Religion and nationality did not matter during my childhood in the city by the sea’

Aman Bharti

Once upon a time there was an Indian boy who grew up in Karachi. At the time, he did not know just how odd that simple fact was. That boy was me. I lived in Karachi because my father, a diplomat, was posted to the Indian consulate in the port city. I was three years old when we arrived in Karachi in 1983, and nearly six when we left in 1986.

Given my age, my world in Karachi orbited two locations: home and school. ‘Home’ was Hindustan Court in Clifton, a building housing the Indian government’s consular employees. Our residence was probably once part of a mansion that was haphazardly carved out into a number of small, bizarrely-shaped homes — our house, for instance, featured disproportionately large windows that went on like a runaway train. Well, in our part of the world we all know that partitions invariably have unexpected consequences.

There was one clue that there was a difference between my world and the world that my friends from school inhabited. In school, when we played ‘fauj fauj’, a variant of ‘cops and robbers’, every child — including myself — wanted to be part of the Pakistan fauj, as this team always won. But at home, I discovered that it was the Indian fauj that always won. It was the kind of paradox that makes little sense to a child, but I quickly made my peace with the discrepancy and learned to switch sides depending on where I played.

Beyond school and home, I have happy memories of going to the beach often. I remember the sea water was brimming with little fish no more than an inch long, and once, I lost a ball in the sea. I was told the ocean would take my ball all the way to Bombay. At the time, I had no idea what or where Bombay was.

A local man named Iqbal would clean our house every day, and for my sister and me, he was our friend. When we finally left Karachi for Delhi, Iqbal sent us candy and toys, including a View-Master, a toy through which you could look at stereoscopic photos. The photo slides that came with the View-Master were of Islamic holy places and festivals, and I would spend hours looking at pictures of Mecca and Muharram activities. I later learned that other children used View-Masters to look at cartoons.

My first school in Karachi was Onimo Montessori Private School. I remember it as a happy place. One day, when the school closed for the day, no one arrived to pick me up. I waited until it was just me and the watchman. He sat with me until someone finally arrived. What I remember most is that he also shared his lunch with me. It was this simple but unselfish act of kindness that has stayed etched in my memory.

When I turned five, it was time to go to a proper school. I remember Jennings Private School as a scary place full of rough boys who were bigger than me. A few children from the Indian consulate also attended Jennings, and my best friend was a girl named Seviyan (like the sweet dish). I remember a prize­giving ceremony at Jennings, when I had won something. The teacher moved me from the back of the line to the front. The boy who was now standing behind me did not approve of his demotion, and, once the teacher left, he pushed me behind him. So did the next boy. And the next boy. When the teacher came by again, I was standing last in line once more.

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Rangers arrest six alleged ‘target killers with ties to MQM’

BY IMTIAZ ALI

KARACHI: Rangers conducted a surgical action in Ranchore Line area on Monday and arrested six alleged target killers having reported ties with Muttahida Qaumi Movement (MQM), said Rangers spokesperson.

Huge cache of weapons was also recovered from the possession of alleged MQM workers dubbed target killers by Sindh Rangers.

The spokesman then went on to give details of the arrested suspects.

Khurram alias Muchar, unit in-charge MQM unit 28, was arrested over charges of involvement in extortion, dumping of weapons and target killings.
Mahmood, an active worker of MQM unit 20, who has already confessed to murdering 47 people when he was arrested earlier in November 2014, was arrested on charges of kidnapping and torture.

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MQM’s letter to Indian High Commission comes to light, urges help for missing workers

KARACHI (Dunya News) – Muttahida Qaumi Movement s (MQM) letter written to Indian High Commission regarding four missing party workers has come to light on Thursday.

The letter states that Pakistani security agencies detained as many as 12 party workers on their way to Hyderabad from Karachi. However, eight of them have been released while four are yet in custody. The letter urges India to take notice of the matter and raise voice.

Read more » Dunya News
See more » http://dunyanews.tv/index.php/en/Pakistan/292146-MQMs-letter-to-Indian-High-Commission-comes-to-li

More » http://www.samaa.tv/pakistan/06-Aug-2015/mqm-writes-letter-to-indian-high-commissioner
http://www.samaa.tv/pakistan/06-Aug-2015/mqm-writes-letter-to-indian-high-commissioner

MQM chief Altaf Hussain request India and NATO to intervene in Pakistan

MQM chief Altaf Hussain asking foreign forces to intervene in Pakistan and he calls his party men, sons of India. He said, India itself is a coward country, if it had some honor it would not have allowed ‘bloodshed of Mohajirs’ on Pakistani soil.

News courtesy: Geo Tv » Via ZemTv
See more » http://www.zemtv.com/2015/08/02/altaf-hussain-request-india-and-nato-to-intervene-in-p/

More details » Voice of Pakistan
More » http://www.voice.pk/videos/exclusive-video-of-altaf-hussain-requesting-india-nato-forces-to-intervene-in-pakistan/

Altaf asks workers to demand UN, White House, NATO for troops in Karachi

DALLAS: Muttahida Qaumi Movement (MQM) Chief Altaf Hussain has asked his party workers to stage protests in front of United Nations, White House and NATO and raise a demand for sending their troops to Karachi.

Altaf Hussain was addressing MQM’s Annual Convention in the US city of Dallas via telephone.

Altaf said, India itself is a coward country, if it had some honor it would not have allowed ‘bloodshed of Mohajirs’ on Pakistani soil. He reiterated the demand for a separate province [Refugees’ Province] for Mohajirs [Refuees].

MQM Chief directed party workers to write letters to US newspapers and make them aware of the actual situation in Pakistan.

Altaf Hussain asked MQM workers to continue their movement for respectable life of mothers, sisters and daughters even if he was murdered.

Read more: GeoTV
See more » http://www.geo.tv/article-192941-Altaf-asks-workers-to-demand-UN-White-House-NATO-for-troops-in-Karachi

Altaf Hussain dissolves MQM

KARACHI: Unsettled over consecutive shocks, Muttahida Qaumi Movement (MQM) Chief Altaf Hussain announced to dissolve the party instantaneously, SAMAA reported on Thursday.

Addressing the party’s Coordination Committee, Altaf Hussain expressed deep regret over the prevalent situation and deplored the extrajudicial killings of the party workers.

Following the announcement regarding the abolishment of the party, Altaf Hussain cut off the address and hanged up. –SAMAA

News courtesy: SAMAA TV
Read more » http://www.samaa.tv/pakistan/23-Jul-2015/altaf-hussain-dissolves-mqm

With China, for China – As China arrives, Pakistan cleans house

By Wajahat S. Khan

The Sino-Pak axis has matured. The decades old ‘Cheen-Pak Bhai Bhai’ narrative is fast moving beyond pan-Karakoram fraternal rhetoric complemented by scenically exotic highways, shared rocket designs and muted nuclear deals to morph into optically sound, fundamentally critical, even mutually loud and proud policy, infrastructure and defense initiatives on the ground. China – and not just its submarines – is coming to Pakistan, and Pakistan is getting ready to receive the People’s Republic. The ‘Bhai’ in Beijing, as the mood in Islamabad indicates, is now a BFF – Best Friend Forever – even a Friend With Benefits.

The comprehensive Chinese assistance package – hinged on the 3000 kilometer-long China-Pak Economic Corridor, an aggressive energy build-up and military modernization – is the largest planned foreign investment program for any country, ever, touching almost crossing over $100 billion in the next decade and a half, and is being seen as the next, and perhaps the last, big thing that war-weary Pakistan must grab on to, at any cost.

The Peking Promise

The plan is simple: The deep-sea port of Gwadar is going to drive Chinese imports, largely oil and gas, into western China, which is relatively underdeveloped versus the rest of the PRC and prone to militancy. The levies, infrastructure and traffic will tone up the CPEC network to create jobs, roads and even entire towns along the way from Pakistani Balochistan, through all of the Islamic Republic’s other provinces, to Chinese Kashgar in Xinjiang. Add the potential of Chinese naval presence in Gwadar that will let it over see Hormuz and neighboring ports and the reality of Pakistan’s newly formed and purpose-built 34th Infantry Division to protect Chinese assets and personnel, and there is a single-minded confidence that the corridor must be secured and will be secured. After all, the Pakistanis have given their word to Beijing.

“China is Pakistan’s only strategic friend…not even the Saudis get to have that privilege any longer” said a senior intelligence officer last month when China’s deputy intelligence chief, Dong Haizhou was promised “no hurdles for CPEC” by army chief General Raheel Sharif during a visit to GHQ, according to the military spokesperson’s office.

So, fuelled by the blank political cheque presented to the civilian and military security apparatus by popular support after the terrible Peshawar Army Public School massacre last December – which has granted the military, police and federal investigators unprecedented constitutional powers to clean house – whoever gets in the way of a CPEC-oriented Pakistan must move aside, or be pushed out. The purge is here, and the reasoning is to satisfy China.

Housekeeping

But this isn’t just the regular arrests and assassinations purge, the type that Pakistanis are used to. It’s more of a wide-ranging political rethink, a housekeeping exercise that runs from the south to the north, just like the corridor it is meant to pave. In Karachi and Sindh, the drive against ‘corrupt’ political parties like former president Asif Ali Zardari’s Pakistan Peoples Party has begun, which has forced him to take some respite and exit the country; also, that’s where the ‘violent’ wings of Karachi’s all-powerful Muttahida Qaumi Movement are being clipped, with some help from the BBC (which claims that India’s Research and Analysis Wing funded and trained the party’s militants) and British authorities (who are investigating the MQM’s leadership in London for murder and money laundering). Karachi, too violent and complicated to tackle alone, needed a pincer move to control it, and the Pakistanis have managed to find a partner here in the UK.

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According To Dr. Shahid Masood, Pakistan’s Army Chief Has Conveyed Strict Message to Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif & former President Zardari About Karachi Operation

The anchor person of News One Tv Dr. Shahid Masood says that Pakistan’s Army Chief Has Conveyed Strict Message to Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif & former President Zardari About Karachi Operation.

News courtesy: News One Tv

MQM chief, Altaf asks CM, Sindh Assembly to ‘send back oppressive Rangers’

BY DAWN.COM

KARACHI: MQM chief Altaf Hussain on Tuesday asked Sindh Chief Minister Qaim Ali Shah and all members of the Sindh Assembly to pass a bill to “send back the oppressive Rangers.”

Talking to party office bearers via telephone from London, Hussain said:

“We will hold a sit-in at the Chief Minister House against the repressive actions, arbitrary arrests, torture, and extra-judicial killings by Rangers. If they open fire on the participants of the sit-in, the Rangers and their ‘captain’ will be responsible for the consequences.”

Interestingly, this demand by Hussain comes a day before Rangers’ special powers in Sindh are due to expire. While the duration of these special powers has been extended multiple times in the past, it is not clear whether the provincial government will go ahead with the move this time around.

Read more » DAWN
See more » http://www.dawn.com/news/1192947/

Rangers have turned Sindh into an occupied province: Altaf

KARACHI: Criticising the ongoing targeted operation in Karachi, Muttahida Qaumi Movement (MQM) chief Altaf Hussain on Saturday alleged that the Rangers had turned Sindh into what he called an “occupied province”, a press release on the party’s website said. “Sindh is burning and MQM workers are being treated like prisoners of war,” said the MQM chief

Read more » DAWN
See more » http://www.dawn.com/news/1192331

British police documents: RAW met MQM in Europe in the 90s, gave money

London-based Pak political activist Tariq Mir alleges Altaf Hussain asked for $1.5 million, but says Indians sought nothing in return

Written by Praveen Swami | New Delhi

London-based Muttahida Qaumi Movement activist Tariq Mir told police in the United Kingdom that the party’s top leadership held a series of secret meetings with India’s Research and Analysis Wing in the mid-1990s, documents obtained by The Sunday Express show.

At secret meetings in Rome, Vienna, Zurich, Salzburg and Prague, the MQM leadership asked for $1.5 million in assistance, Mir alleged.

The BBC had touched off a political firestorm in Pakistan last week, quoting “an authoritative Pakistani source” as saying that senior MQM officials had told police in the United Kingdom that “the party was receiving Indian funding”.  The report quoted Pakistani officials as claiming that hundreds of MQM militants had been trained by India over the last decade in “explosives, weapons and sabotage”.

Read more » The Indian Express
Learn more » http://indianexpress.com/article/india/india-others/british-police-documents-raw-met-mqm-in-europe-in-the-90s-gave-money/

– See more at: http://indianexpress.com/article/india/india-others/british-police-documents-raw-met-mqm-in-europe-in-the-90s-gave-money/#sthash.0HJD7cny.dpuf

Pakistan’s MQM ‘received Indian funding’ – BBC report

Officials in Pakistan’s MQM party have told the UK authorities they received Indian government funds, the BBC learnt from an authoritative Pakistani source.

UK authorities investigating the MQM for alleged money laundering also found a list of weapons in an MQM property.

A Pakistani official has told the BBC that India has trained hundreds of MQM militants over the last 10 years.

The Indian authorities described the claims as “completely baseless”. The MQM said it was not going to comment.

With 24 members in the National Assembly, the Muttahida Quami Movement (MQM) has long been a dominant force in the politics of Pakistan’s largest city, Karachi.

British authorities held formal recorded interviews with senior MQM officials who told them the party was receiving Indian funding, the BBC was told.

Meanwhile a Pakistani official has told the BBC that India has trained hundreds of MQM militants in explosives, weapons and sabotage over the last 10 years in camps in north and north-east India.

Before 2005-2006 the training was given to a small number of mid-ranking members of the MQM, the official said.

More recently greater numbers of more junior party members have been trained.

The claims follow the statement of a senior Karachi police officer that two arrested MQM militants said they had been trained in India. In April Rao Anwar gave details of how the two men went to India via Thailand to be trained by the Indian intelligence agency RAW.

In response MQM leader Altaf Hussain issued a tirade of abuse at Rao Anwar.

Asked about the claims of Indian funding and training of the MQM, the Indian High Commission in London said: “Shortcomings of governance cannot be rationalised by blaming neighbours.”

The UK authorities started investigating the MQM in 2010 when a senior party leader, Imran Farooq, was stabbed to death outside his home in north London.

In the course of those inquiries the police found around £500,000 ($787,350) in the MQM’s London offices and in the home of MQM leader Altaf Hussain. That prompted a second investigation into possible money laundering.

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Rangers ‘cementing’ hold in Karachi

Despite the fact that the federal government has earmarked Rs 300 million under Public Sector Development Programme (PSDP) for the construction of accommodation for Abdullah Shah Ghazi Rangers at Karachi, paramilitary Sindh Rangers are unlawfully running a construction business in the city to “meet expenses”.

Pakistan Today has learnt that the paramilitary force, by the name of Karachi Block Works (KBW), prepares and sells construction material in the open market and also provides services for building and demolishing houses in the city. Their construction depot is situated along the boundary wall of Sheikh Zaid Islamic Research Centre (SZIRC) on University of Karachi (KU) land in Gulshan-e-Iqbal.

Upon visit to the site, Pakistan Today witnessed a large quantity of cement blocks, sand and stones, spread over thousands of square yards of land, with material-loaded trucks, shuttling from and to the depot. Within the depot, Rangers have made a makeshift office where paramilitary personnel ensure their presence for public dealing and security.

Talking to Pakistan Today, a Rangers ‘supervisor’ at the depot said that Rangers had been running this business since 1994. “We supply cement blocks, crush stones and sand to the market. We also provide services for building and demolishing houses in all parts of the city,” he said.

‘SWEET’ BLOCKS, THIRSTY LOCALS:

Unlawfully using KU land for the business, the paramilitary force has intercepted the main water pipeline of Karachi Water and Sewerage Board (KWSB) to use water for manufacturing blocks.

Due to this puncture in the KWSB water pipeline, the residents of Gulistan-e-Jauhar, residing opposite to KU, have been facing acute water shortage for the last eight years.

“KBW is famous in the area for manufacturing quality blocks by using sweet water,” the supervisor however boasts.

WHO ALLOWED THIS?:

When contacted, the KU administration claimed that they had given a piece of land to Rangers for six months for manufacturing blocks for the construction of its installation in the city, but they started a private construction business and have been running it for eight years now on the varsity’s precious land.

“Permission to Rangers to manufacture blocks was given on request of the then KU security adviser Prof Dr Khalid Iraqi for six months in 2008,” KU External Estate Officer Naeemur Rehman said.

“As the given deadline expired, the then vice chancellor Prof Dr Pirzada Qasim Raza Siddiqui wrote a letter to Rangers high-ups, requesting them to evacuate the varsity land however the Rangers refused to vacate the land,” Rehman maintained.

WHERE DOES THE REVENUE GO?:

Investigation confirmed the Rangers construction business in the city but it is yet to be ascertained as to where the revenue generated by this business ends up. The Rangers depot supervisor claimed that the business is controlled and monitored directly by the Sindh Rangers director general but this could not be confirmed from the Rangers authorities.

RANGERS DILLYDALLY:

When contacted, Rangers officials initially disowned their involvement in any commercial business in Karachi, however they later accepted that the paramilitary force was engaged in construction business to “finance its construction projects in the city and to meet financial expenses of the paramilitary force here”.

Rangers Sindh spokesperson Colonel Tahir Mehmood diverted Pakistan Today’s query to Major Sibtain, saying “I will get back to you on this”.

Major Sibtain initially disowned the business, but later claimed that Rangers were constructing pickets by generating revenue from this business. “Rangers got Rs 300.5 million in the federal PSDP for the construction of accommodation for Abdullah Shah Ghazi in Karachi, but it has not yet received the money,” Maj Sibtain maintained.

Questioned on the paramilitary force’s development budget, Maj Sibtain excused himself saying that he needed to check details with the Accounts Department.

Moreover, the spokesperson dodged a question about the record of the revenue generated through the construction business.

“The paramilitary force is working to bring law and order situation under control by conducting targeted raids and operation in every nook and corner of the city,” he said instead.

News courtesy:Pakistan Today
Read more » http://www.pakistantoday.com.pk/2015/06/17/national/rangers-cementing-hold-in-karachi/

Rangers “overstepped its authority” with SBCA office raid: CM Sindh writes to DG Rangers

KARACHI: Sindh Chief Minister Syed Qaim Ali Shah has written a letter to DG Rangers Sindh and urged the paramilitary force to work within its domain, ARY News reported.

In a letter, CM Sindh said Rangers had been given powers under Anti-Terrorism Act to stop burgeoning terrorism.

However, Rangers raid at Sindh Building Control Authority’s office was overstepping of its doman. The letter, citing CM Sindh, urged that Rangers must work within its defined boundaries.

The notification detailing Rangers domain of work was also attached with the letter.

Mr. Shah said Rangers must respect provincial autonomy.

The copy of the letter was also dispatched to Interior Ministry Chaudhary Nisar Ali Khan.

Read more » ARY News Tv
http://arynews.tv/en/rangers-overstepped-its-authority-with-sbca-office-raid-cm-sindh-writes-to-dg-rangers

See more » BBC urdu
http://www.bbc.com/urdu/pakistan/2015/06/150617_sindh_cm_letter_to_dg_rangers_hk?ocid=socialflow_facebook

Off the plane, on to the stage

KARACHI: Shehzad Ghias didn’t seem jet-lagged as he took the stage for his comeback show Fresh Of the Plane at the Music Art Dance school. Ghias, who recently returned to the city from New York after two years, kept the audience engaged with his satire of Pakistan’s bizarre pop culture in a two-day act on June 13 and 14.

He opened by ridiculing the country’s local entertainment content for children by explaining why a show as popular as Sesame Street was unable to take off in Pakistan. “In America, you have cute characters, such as the Cookie Monster and Elmo, but in Pakistan, you have Uncle Sargam — an old, bald man. Imagine having a ‘Hug me, Uncle Sargam’ toy like the ones they have for Elmo in the United States,” he quipped.

It was an honour to perform in New York but the love you get from Pakistan is incomparable, I have a connection with Karachi, Sindh & it will stay with me no matter what. ~ Comedian Shahzad Ghias

Read more » The Express Tribune
See more » http://tribune.com.pk/story/904661/off-the-plane-on-to-the-stage/

Silenced – the day my daughter was shot in front of me

Sabeen01Sabeen Mahmud was a passionate supporter of free speech. She ran a space in a Karachi cafe for people to talk freely about politics, society and human rights – but six weeks ago, in the latest of a string of attacks on liberal activists in Pakistan, a gunman killed her as she drove home. Her mother, Mahenaz, who was next to her, talks about her remarkable daughter.

I hadn’t visited the space for quite a while but that day I just wanted to be around her – it was just a feeling, “I have to go today, and I have to be around, just to show her my support.”

This image keeps going round all the time in my head – these eyes looking, and this gun coming out. I said to Sabeen, “Just look, I mean these guys, what do they want?” I thought it was a mugging actually, I thought they wanted a handbag or phone, because that’s pretty common in Karachi. But then I heard the gun shots, the glass shattered and Sabeen was gone and they disappeared.

I took two bullets. One bullet actually is one of the bullets that Sabeen took, because they fired at such close range – we were stationary because we were at a traffic signal which was red. There were people all around us, and this motorcycle rode up a bit too close for comfort at Sabeen’s side and they fired from there and one of the bullets went through her, out and into my arm and out of my arm. That is one. She took five.

The other one, the police believe it came in and ricocheted somewhere in the car and it went into my back. I must have moved forward to look at her. I was saying to her, “Sabeen, can you hear me? Say something, we’ll just get you to the hospital.”

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Rangers arrest four MQM activists from Karachi University (KU) Staff Town for allegedly planning attack on Ismailis

BY AAMIR MAJEED

Investigation into the attack on Ismailis’ bus in Karachi’s Safoora Goth area, which claimed 45 lives, has revealed that the Rangers have arrested four suspects associated with the Muttahida Qaumi Movement (MQM) from the Karachi University (KU)’s Staff Town for their alleged involvement in planning the assault, Pakistan Today has learnt.

Per details, a heavy contingent of Rangers surrounded KU’s Staff Town late on May 20, targeted some houses and picked up four MQM activists associated with MQM’s Scheme-33 Unit, including a former unit in-charge.

The arrested men were identified as Muhammad Shahid alias Athara, Zeeshan Amin alias Shaan, Muhammad Adnan Habib alias Charas and his brother Muhammad Faizan Habib alias Fido.

Shahid has been serving as a clerk in KU’s accounts section and had also served as MQM Scheme-33 unit in-charge. Zeeshan has been serving as a clerk in KU’s audit department, whose brother Umair Amin was arrested few months ago for alleged involvement in targeted killings in Karachi.

Adnan has been serving as non-teaching staff in KU’s Chemistry Department while his brother Faizan was said to be associated with the Department of Health and Physical Education. The arrested men had been residing in KU’s Staff Town for many years.

“These suspects allegedly took part in planning of the attack and were not part of the actual strike,” an official of a security agency told Pakistan Today. However, Rangers high-ups did not comment on the arrests despite repeated phone calls and text messages.

Earlier, Rangers arrested KU’s security guard, Muhammad Javed alias Javed Mohajir son of Muhammad Shariff, in November 2013. He was associated with MQM and accused of killing several people on May 12, 2007 on arrival of former chief justice of Pakistan (CJP) Iftikhar Muhammad Chaudhry in Karachi.

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World Sindhi Congress (WSC) condemned the terrorist attack on peaceful Ismaili Community of Sindh

We condemned the terrorist attack on Peaceful, Humble, Down to earth, cooperative, enterprising members of Aga Khani-Ismalili community of innocent citizens of Sindh and stand with the grieving families. We salute the driver (who was injured himself ) of the bus who drove the bus to nearby hospital to save numerous lives.
PPP administration completely failed to protect its citizens. It is absolute failure of Rangers and Sindh Police. Rangers should held accountable along with Police. Sindh spent sizable amount of budget on Rangers and all they are doing is running water tanker business in Karachi.
We demand de-weaponization of Karachi and stoppage of the mass exodus of illegal immigrants in Sindh.

News courtesy: Via facebook wall of WSC

Aga Khan shocked by attack on Ismailis

BY DAWN.COM

The spiritual leader of the Ismaili community His Highness Aga Khan expressed shock and sorrow over the attack on a bus carrying Ismailis near Safoora Chowk in Karachi which left 43 dead and 13 wounded.

“This attack represents a senseless act of violence against a peaceful community. My thoughts and prayers are with the victims and the families of those killed and wounded in the attack,” said a statement posted on the Aga Khan Development Network website.

The statement said that Ismailis are a peaceful global community that live in harmony with various other ethnic and religious groups across the world.

The statement added that other Ismaili leaders in Pakistan are currently involved in an emergency operation to help the survivors of the attack.

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43 killed in attack on bus carrying Ismailis in Karachi

By AGENCIES | IMTIAZ ALI

KARACHI: At least 43 people were killed and 13 others wounded on Wednesday when armed men opened fire inside a bus carrying members of the Ismaili community near Safoora Chowk in Karachi.

Sindh Police Inspector General Ghulam Haider Jamali said that 60 people were on board the bus when six gunmen entered and executed 43 passengers.

He added that the armed men used 9mm pistols in the massacre. The attackers managed to flee after the attack.

Hospital sources have so far confirmed that the dead include 25 men and 16 women. Police officials said that there were no children among the casualties.

All victims were shot from a close-range.

Rana M Razzaq, a security coordinator at the Memon Medical Center, told Dawn that, “One young girl hid and survived. Three or four others who were brought to the hospital have survived…the rest are all dead.”

Read more » DAWN
See more » http://www.dawn.com/news/1181698/43-killed-in-attack-on-bus-carrying-ismailis-in-karachi

‘The Republic of Jinnahpur’ – Strategy For Balkanization of Pakistan

SYED JAMALUDDIN WAS THE FIRST ONE TO SEEK INDIAN ASSISTANCE

by Zaki Khalid

Jamaluddin is a self-exile in Heidelberg, Germany and who is a strong proponent of ‘The State of Jinnahpur’. This, he claims, is for the supposed protection of the Urdu-speaking community. In the past, he has continued to pen propaganda and vice against the state of Pakistan and its institutions in particular the military and intelligence services. Furthermore, he calls ‘Punjabi terrorism’ as the supposed root cause of chaos in Pakistan. In the early 90’s, Jamaluddin was recruited by the Indian intelligence agency RAW after he developed internal disputes with comrades in MQM. He had escaped before he could be captured by the Military Intelligence which was on the lookout for him owing to the maps and designs in his possession as he was one of the main architects of the Jinnahpur conspiracy, which received massive funding and support from the establishment across our border.

In his message to the international journalist community, Jamaluddin warned that the military establishment of Pakistan wants to “corner and eliminate MQM” in Karachi through guerilla warfare. This, he alleges, is being done “through Talibanized factions of Pathan and Punjabi political parties”.

Moving ahead, Jamaluddin appealed to MQM leader Altaf Hussain to beware of Pakistan’s military and intelligence institutions adding that Altaf is being treated “as yet another Sheikh Mujib-ur-Rehman of Bangladesh”.

He added that making of the ‘Republic of Jinnahpur’ might also gain momentum as a consequence of possible disintegration of Spain in 2015. “Karachi is Pakistan’s Catalonia and Kosovo”, says Jamaluddin.

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Who killed the girl saint of Karachi? By Hasan Mujtaba (translated from Urdu)

(An attempted translation of an Urdu column published at Jang, Pakistan, April 30, 2015)

Elite Mummies and Daddies, living across the Clifton Bridge of Karachi, get to know about the troubles and travails of most other citizens only when their maidservants or drivers from Baloch Colony, Liyari, or New Karachi, tell them about the misery that their own friends and acquaintances faced that day.

Or as my friend tells me, “the Mummies and Daddies felt the miseries only when  a shortage of fresh vegetable occurred at Agha super market.” Only then they realized that something bad has happened in the city. In such a situation a girl like Sabeen proved that they she was a saint.

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IG Sindh Removes Rao Anwar As SSP Malir

via SAMAA TV News

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Sindh IG transfers SSP Malir for ‘misusing’ authority

KARACHI: Sindh Police Inspector General (IG) Ghulam Hyder Jamali on Thursday night transferred Senior Superintendent of Police (SSP) Rao Anwar from Malir, according to a police spokesperson.

The provincial police chief said Rao Anwar “misused” his authority following which he has been transferred from Malir district.

SSP East Peer Mohammad Shah has been given additional charge for the time being, while Rao Anwar has been directed to report to the Central Police Office, the spokesperson added.

The police spokesperson said the IG’s orders came after Sindh Chief Minister Qaim Ali Shah took serious notice of Rao Anwar’s press conference earlier in the day, in which he leveled serious allegations against Muttahida Qaumi Movement (MQM).

The SSP had claimed that the MQM has links with Indian spy agency RAW, and that the party sent workers to India to get them trained by RAW and eventually use that training to spread terror in Pakistan. “The MQM is a terrorist outfit in guise of a political party and should be banned,” the SSP said in a press conference earlier in the day.

Qaim Ali Shah has directed the Sindh IG to enquire into the matter and submit a report within 24 hours.

News courtesy: DAWN
Read more » http://www.dawn.com/news/1179148/sindh-ig-transfers-ssp-malir-for-misusing-authority

Arrested suspects affiliated with MQM, trained by RAW: SSP Malir Rao Anwar says

via SAMAA Tv News

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Arrested suspects affiliated with MQM, trained by RAW: says SSP Malir Rao Anwar

BY DAWN.COM | IMTIAZ ALI

KARACHI: SSP Malir Rao Anwar announced the arrest of two terror suspects last night, whom he claimed were members of Indian spy agency RAW (Research and Analysis Wing).

Speaking to the media on Thursday, he made the startling claim that the suspects – Tahir alias Lamba and Mama Junaid – also belonged to the Muttahida Qaumi Movement (MQM) and had been sent to India for training in the past.

“MQM is a terrorist organisation and it should be banned,” SSP Anwar argued, while narrating that members of MQM went to India through Indian-held Kashmir, were trained there by India’s intelligence agency— RAW— and then came back to Pakistan to spread terror.

“We have solid evidence to prove these allegations. The two people we arrested have confessed all of this and they are ashamed of their activities. We recovered a large amount of explosives, hand grenades, 9mm pistols from these suspects. We will investigate further during the remand,” he said.

“MQM is spreading terror in the guise of a political party, and all the senior leaders of MQM including its chief Altaf Hussain are involved in spreading terror in the country,” he added.

The SSP alleged that Zulfiqar Haider and Nadeem Nusrat, the deputy convener of MQM, have been funding these terrorist activities from London.

Speaking about how these terrorists operated, Anwar said “They are in contact with Zulfiqar Haider, Nadeem Nusrat and Muhammad Anwar. The suspects got in touch with Waqas, who arranged money and visas in Bangkok from where they then go to Delhi airport. Javed Langra, Naveed, his brother, Tariq Zaidi and Sunny received them and took them to a farmhouse in Delhi and trained them in Dheradun. An Indian Army official named Ram trained them. After training, they are brought back by way of Kashmir and then they entered illegally through the Lahore border.”

Anwar said the MQM should be banned the way the Tehreek-i-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) and other militant outfits are on the basis of their terrorist activities.

The arrested suspects will be kept in custody for 90 days and a JIT will be formed to investigate the matter, said the SSP. “We have a lot of evidence. People who are enemies of the state are at the forefront of this political party.”

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Murdered on the streets of Karachi: my friend who dared to believe in free speech

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Sabeen Mahmud singlehandedly created a counter-cultural haven for artists, writers and thinkers in her home city. And she paid for it with her life. Those of us left behind can only ask why

“Be careful,” I said to my childhood friend Sabeen Mahmud when I saw her in London in 2013, soon after she’d received a death threat – neither the first nor last. “Someone has to fight them,” she replied.

“Fear is just a line in your head,” Sabeen had once said in an interview with Wired magazine – and she and I lived on different sides of that line. On Friday night, Sabeen was murdered, gunned down in her car in Karachi as she drove home with her mother.

There aren’t too many people from Karachi with a clear conscience. It’s a city of many horrors powered by even more guns, and fear makes most people live in a silence that becomes complicity. But Sabeen was always a woman made of different stuff, thanks in large measure to the two great influences of her life: her mother, Mahnaz (shot twice during the attack), from whom she inherited her socialist tendencies, and her friend and mentor Zaheer Kidvai (Zak) who introduced her to the idea of counterculture, via everything from Abbie Hoffman to revolutionary Urdu poets. While most of us at our elite school in Karachi lived in a fairly apolitical bubble, Sabeen was developing class-consciousness and identifying political heroes. Post-university, when most of her schoolfriends were choosing not to return to an increasingly embattled city, she decided to take another approach.

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Pakistan military’s move on Karachi seen part of ‘creeping coup’

BY MEHREEN ZAHRA-MALIK

ISLAMABAD – (Reuters) – The chief of Pakistan’s main spy agency is spearheading a campaign to wrest control of the teeming port city of Karachi from a powerful political party, the military’s latest, and some say boldest, foray into civilian life in recent years.

According to military officials, police officers and members of the Muttahida Qaumi Movement (MQM) party which has traditionally dominated Karachi, Rizwan Akhtar has decided the time for policing the city from the sidelines is over.

“There is a quiet, creeping takeover of Karachi by the military,” said a government official close to Akhtar, head of the Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) agency, which traditionally acts as an extension of army power in Pakistan.

“Karachi is just too big … too much land, too much business, resources. No one party will be allowed to rule Karachi from now on,” added the official, who declined to be named.

The sweltering, violent metropolis is Pakistan’s largest and wealthiest city. It accounts for half of national revenues and hosts the stock exchange, central bank and a giant port.

The military’s crackdown in Karachi started late in 2013, when the murder rate soared and mutilated bodies were dumped in alleyways daily.

The operation, which escalated last month, is officially aimed at criminals and militants, but some say MQM is the real target.

Army spokesmen did not respond to requests for comment.

Weakening the MQM’s grip, and particularly that of exiled leader Altaf Hussain, would free space for other political parties seen as more sympathetic to the military, like Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf, led by former cricketer Imran Khan.

It would also give the army leverage over Pakistan’s economic hub. That complements other steps taken in the last two years to tighten its grip on national security, foreign policy and the judiciary through the introduction of military courts.

The army’s increasing influence could make it harder for Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif to deliver a rapprochement with India that he promised when he won elections in 2013.

“MISSION CREEP”

Critics call it “mission creep” and say the army’s power grab is a setback for Pakistan, where the military has ruled for about half the country’s history.

But police in Karachi are seen as too weak or corrupt to stamp out violence effectively, so many residents are willing to rely on the military despite its history of coups and accusations of rights abuses.

Last month, paramilitary Rangers swooped on the MQM’s headquarters in Karachi, seizing arms and detaining “criminals”, including a fugitive convicted of murder.

It was a direct challenge to the authority of Hussain, who, despite living in London since he fled murder charges in Pakistan in 1991, leads the party and remains one of the country’s most powerful figures.

The army has long accused the MQM of racketeering, kidnappings for ransom and targeted killings in Karachi. Police recorded 2,507 murders in the city in 2013, up from 278 in 2006.

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Sabeen, the one who never backed down

By HASSAN BELAL ZAIDI

The fingers type, but I don’t feel them moving. The ears sense a commotion, but I cannot hear. The eyes fight back tears, but it’s futile to resist.

How can you feel, how can you react, how can you respond, when the news ofa friend’s death hits you, right between the eyes?

But Sabeen was far more than a friend, she was a beacon; an island of calm in a sea of madness.

The Second Floor, conceived and modelled in her own image, was the physical embodiment of her intangible love for all things; food, the arts, knowledge and ideas, and, of course, people.

As bleeding heart liberals go, Sabeen’s was the bloodiest heart I have ever come across. Sabeen did a lot more than just help people. She championed causes, thought outside the box and wanted, with every breath, to make a difference.

Also read: Sabeen Mahmud — a profile

A leading light of the #PakistanForAll and #ReclaimYourMosque campaigns, she was usually the first to hit the streets and the last to go home.

When they came for the Shias of Alamdar Road, she was at Numaish from the very beginning to the bitter end.

When they came for the Christians of Peshawar, she was right there at the heart of the human chains that protected churches on Sunday mass.

Always one to challenge convention, always one to take the unpopular stand, always one to side with the underdog; Sabeen Mahmud never backed down from a fight.

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Pakistan – Director T2F Sabeen Mahmud shot dead in Karachi

BY DAWN.COM

KARACHI: The director of The Second Floor (T2F), Sabeen Mahmud, was shot dead by unidentified gunmen in Karachi on Friday.

Sabeen, accompanied by her mother, left T2F after 9pm on Friday evening and was on her way home when she was shot by unidentified gunmen in Defence Phase-II, sources confirmed. She died on her way to the hospital. Doctors said they retrieved five bullets from her body, which has now been shifted to Jinnah Postgraduate Medical Centre.

Her mother also sustained bullet wounds and is currently being treated at a hospital; she is said to be in critical condition.

T2F had on Friday organised a talk on Balochistan: ‘Unsilencing Balochistan Take 2: In Conversation with Mama Qadeer, Farzana Baloch & Mir Mohammad Ali Talpur.’

Sabeen had left T2F after attending the session, when she was targeted.

T2F, described as a community space for open dialogue, was Sabeen’s brainchild. In an interview with Aurora, she referred to it as “an inclusive space where different kinds of people can be comfortable.”

Conceived as a bookstore and café patterned after the old coffeehouse culture of Lahore and Karachi, The Second Floor — or T2F, as everyone calls it — says on its website that it was born out of a desire to enact transformational change in urban Pakistani society.

Muttahida Qaumi Movement leader Nasreen Jalil, while talking to DawnNews, condemned Sabeen Mahmud’s killing and demanded the government to bring the perpetrators to justice.

Sindh Chief Minister Qaim Ali Shah, taking notice of the incident, has asked the Additional Inspector-General Karachi Police to submit a report on the brutal murder, DawnNews reported.

Read more » DAWN
See more » http://www.dawn.com/news/1177956/director-t2f-sabeen-mahmud-shot-dead

Smart Money to Follow China’s Massive Investment in Pakistan

This (China’s $46 billion investment in Pakistan) can not be purely politically driven. Beijing is commercial: CEO’s, not think tank intellectuals, travel with politicians. Barron’s Asia

Spurred by Chinese investment, the smart money is taking notice of Pakistan as an attractive investment destination. The investors are looking at the fact that Pakistani stocks have been outperforming both emerging and frontier markets for several years. The benchmark index of the Karachi Stock Exchange (KSE100) is up more than 20% in the last 12 months, according to NASDAQ.com.

Pakistani Shares in 2015: After a dismal March, MSCI Pakistan rebounded strongly this month, returning 9.1% so far. In April, the iShares MSCI Frontier 100 ETF (FM) rose 4.3%, the WisdomTree India Earnings Fund (EPI) dropped 1.2%, the iShares MSCI India ETF (INDA) fell 1.9%, according to Barron’s Asia.

KSE-100 Performance: In 2014, the KSE-100 Index gained 6,870 points thereby generating a handsome return of 27% (31% return in US$ terms), making Pakistan’s KSE world’s third best performing market. Total offerings in the year 2014 reached 9 as compared to 3 in the year 2013. After a gap of seven years, Rs 73 billion were raised through offerings in 2014 as compared to a meager Rs 4 billion raised in 2013. Foreign investors, that hold US$ 6.1 billion worth of Pakistani shares -which is 33% of the free-float (9% of market capitalization)-remained net buyers in 2014.

Read more » http://www.riazhaq.com/2015/04/smart-money-to-follow-chinas-massive.html