Saturday, June 25, 2011


One upon a time, there was a country who claims to be the Nuclear Power butdid not have the Electric Power.

This is the most precise black and bleak story!!! Thanx for your time and efforts dear readers!

Thursday, June 23, 2011


Following is text of the resignation letter written to the National Assembly speaker by Marvi Memon

It has been my honour to serve as a member of the National Assembly of Pakistan since March 2008. As a first-time parliamentarian, I have honoured the oath I took to perform my functions “always in the interest of the sovereignty, integrity, solidarity, well being and prosperity of Pakistan.”

However, ever since my party leadership’s decision to join the federal government, it has become difficult for me to be true to my oath. I believe that PML-Q leaders by leaving their role as an opposition party have not lived up to the expectations of millions of voters who reposed their trust in them in the Feb 2008 elections. I tried to prevail upon the party leadership to change their decision, but in vain. Now the only honourable course open to me is to resign from PML membership and also as member of the National Assembly on the occasion of vote for the budget.

Abstaining from voting on the budget, would practically mean approving it, and with it, tacitly endorsing all government policies and future plans.

Since I believe this coalition government is working against the interests of the people of Pakistan, my support for the budget would compromise all my struggle for the people. I cannot vote against my conscience. I have thus voted against the budget. Just like Marui in Latif Sain’s Shah Jo Risalo, this Marui too cannot compromise the struggle for her marooara (people.)

As I had predicted, PML-Q has not been able to correct the disastrous course of this government. And they will not be able to do so in the future as well.

Simply because this government has a built-in flaw: its sole objective is to protect its vested interests rather than people’s interests. It is my firm belief that the only thing that would continue in the coming months is crass, corrupt politicking to steal the next election. The real concerns of the people would continue to be neglected.

Therefore, I believe that:

To be associated with a government, which has not followed parliament’s joint resolution mandating action against NATO forces in case of drones, has bartered Pakistan’s sovereignty, has not protected Pakistan’s sensitive locations, has not kept our territory protected from foreign forces, would be a travesty.

To be associated with a government which has allowed human rights of thousands to be grossly violated by not giving them justice, salaries, minimum wages, regularisations, jobs (Haleema, NPIW, Lady Health Workers, APP, NCHD, NEF, Lower Education Staff etc), would be subversive.

To be associated with a government, which has taken away food and shelter from the poor, fuel from the vehicles, electricity and gas from industry and homes, which has forced people to commit suicides due to its corruption, faulty economic policies, which has forgiven the loan defaulters, which has not been austere, which has not taxed the rich appropriately including inequitable taxation for agriculture and industry, would be criminal.

To be associated with a government, which has been completely negligent in its primary responsibilities during natural and national disasters like Attabad lake, the recent floods, the Abottabad crisis, the complete breakdown of law and order in all of Pakistan, would be perfidious.

To be associated with a government, which has abysmally failed to protect its own constitutional office holders, security forces, religious sects, minorities, media and most importantly therefore innocent people from kidna
ppings, targeted killings and terrorist attacks, which is fighting a directionless war and is compromising with criminals, would be atrocity.

To be associated with a government which has allowed Pakistan’s image to be trashed internationally, has practically abandoned the valiant people of occupied Kashmir, has let national sovereignty to be chipped away, has not managed its relations with friendly countries like China at its optimal, has not handled the Indian threat with firmness and dignity, has done nothing to counter growing campaign against Pakistan’s nuclear assets, would be treacherous.

To be associated with a government which has used provincialism as a political tool, which has not resolved border commission dispute on Diamir dam, has not fulfilled its promises in Aghaze Huqooqe Balochistan or KPK financial revival package or FATA Reforms, has not fulfilled its rehabilitation commitments for earthquake 2005 victims, has not fulfilled provincial quota obligations, has discriminated between rural-urban and head-tail for water, has not held anyone accountable in mishaps like the Air Blue crash, has not resolved inter-provincial water disputes in line with 1991 Water Accord, has not passed the National Language Bill accepting the rights of provinces, would be disloyal.

To be associated with a government whose corruption, lack of meritocracy, incompetence has brought national economy down on its knees, which has mortgaged the coming generations’ future by mindless borrowing, shattered public sector corporations, retarded industrial production, hammered the small farmer and has pushed half the population in the depths of wretched poverty, would be a perversion.

To be associated with a government, which has willfully clashed with the judiciary, has dragged its feet on the Accountability Bill and the bill to prosecute terrorists, and has rendered parliament irrelevant, forcing thousands like myself to get justice from judiciary versus parliament would be treasonous.

To be associated with a government that is run by thugs and commission-mafia, who have lined up their pockets with development funds, deprived people of
their fundamental rights such as clean water, schools, health centers, roads, electricity, gas, would be shameful.

It is time that the people of Pakistan are freed from this government. It is time that sincere, tax-paying Pakistanis unite for Pakistan’s sake. It is time they reject old politics and espouse new politics, where the definition of politics is serving ones people rather than ruling over them. For the above reasons, I hereby tender my resignation for the sake of the people of AJK, Balochistan, GB, KPK, Punjab, Sindh – my Pakistan.

I intend to honour my oath by educating my people on the dangers of supporting a corrupt, inefficient and self-serving government that is happily allowing our homeland to descend into chaos. I want to impress upon my people through my Karavan-e-Haq, that they don’t have to accept a government that robs them daily. That they have a right to clean governance, and that their destiny is in their own hands.

I intend at all times to honour my flag, continuing my humble struggle for Haq and providing Pakistan with the leadership that can make it a just, moderate, and developed country.

Sunday, June 19, 2011


By Muhammad Mahtab Bashir

Who held you dearly when you first arrived in this world? Who held your precious hands, teaching you to take your first steps? Who did you want to emulate growing up? Who do you still look up to after all these years? – it’s your father.

Father's Day gives us an opportunity to recognise the contribution of the men who have nurtured us since birth - instilling in us values and inspiring us to be better human beings.

Our fathers are our guides, teachers and providers. They are the ones who work day in and day out to make sure that we get the best of everything life can possibly provide. Now is the time to show our appreciation for all the sacrifices that he chose to make for us. Every third Sunday of June, which this year happens to be the June 19 is celebrated as Father's Day.

On the occasion of this Father’s Day Sunday, I suggest sons and daughters to pack that perfect customised gift on this father’s Day- A perfect present truly customised to the taste of their fathers.

First, analyse the type of person he is. Think back and recall all the years spent closely with him. Is he a sporty person? Does he like to hit balls? Or is he a quiet person who likes to relax and listen to slow music? Is he a couch potato or does he prefer to read novels?

The next step is to brainstorm and prepare the surprise for him. If you grew up cheering your father when he played squash or tennis but now, due to age, lacks the vigour for strenuous sports, a golf club and a membership to his desired golfing club is ideal. He can enjoy sports that his age permits and also make friends with people his own age.

Did your father always cherish having a pet at home while your mom abhorred the very idea? You can get a bird, fish, puppy, cat, rabbit, tortoise or any other pet that he always wanted in the house. If you think a big aquarium or fish tank will take up too much space or cleaning it will be cumbersome, you can get a fish bowl with a single fish in it.

Is he a plant lover but could never manage the time for gardening? Buy him saplings of flowers, vegetables, fruits or herbs or and a combination of all. If your parents’ house lacks the space for a garden, arrange for a nook garden on your terrace. Arranging and paying for a gardener would relieve him of its high maintenance as well.

Does he like to listen to old music and watch old movies? If you can afford it, a DVD player will be just perfect. Nowadays the price of electric devices have become affordable and good quality DVD players are within most people's reach. Along with the player buy him a collection of his favourite movies from his early days. Try to recall his favourite movie stars or ask your mother who he cherished on the golden screen and voila, you've hit the jackpot.

Is he a bookworm? Get him a magazine subscription to any Pakistani, Indian or Western magazine. Depending on his preference you can subscribe to Readers Digest, Health, National Geographic, etc. Membership to a library like British Council or likewise libraries will take him into the kingdom of books too.

A hand made gift with a lot of thought and effort will be well appreciated. Make for him a card or paint “I LOVE YOU DAD” on a T-shirt. You can also make a collage of family pictures. Anything you prepare with your own hands will be adored.

If you have a big budget planned, you can buy a computer, cellphone or a ticket to his dream holiday destination or to see someone he has been longing to see such as other siblings, aunts and uncles.

Father's Day can provide the opportunity to get him what he needs. Buy a machine to measure his blood pressure or blood sugar. If his doctors have been recommending him to go on walks, get a pair of walking shoes and a treadmill.

You can also prepare his favourite meal or take him to dinner to a restaurant or spend the whole day together. You can also spend the day at home. Listen to him talk of his old days. A day well spent will fill in the gaps of the years of absence.

The gifts don't have to be awfully expensive or ostentatious. All that matters is you show him that his children, who are his greatest gifts themselves, love and care for him unconditionally and immensely. It can even be that he will never use the gift but will cherish it as a memento and hold it dearly to his heart.

Make Father's Day special for your father. Show him the gratitude that he truly deserves. Our fathers stood by us when we needed them. Prove to them today that we are here when they need us.

History of Father’s Day: It would be interesting to know how Father's Day came into practice and celebrated worldwide with an equal sincerity and respect as any other significant holidays. Here's a short history on the holiday, and meaning of the different colors of roses to be worn that Day.

About 4,000 years ago a young boy named Elmusu wished his Babylonian father good health and a long life by carving a Father's Day message on a card made out of clay. No one knows what happened to Elmesu or his father, but the tradition of having a special day honoring fathers has continued through the years in countries across the world.

The Countries, where the Catholic Church were of significant influence on the culture of the society, Father's Day is celebrated on St. Joseph's Day (March 19). However, a more secular celebration which is not associated with any religion is followed in recent times to highlight the increased diversity among people from all over the globe coexisting together in one place.

Father's Day is celebrated popularly on 3rd Sunday in June in many parts of the world. The idea for creating a day for children to honor their fathers began in Spokane, Washington. A woman by the name of Sonora Smart Dodd thought of the idea for Father's Day while listening to a Mother's Day sermon in 1909. Having been raised by her father, Henry Jackson Smart, after her mother died, Sonora wanted her father to know how special he was to her. It was her father that made all the parental sacrifices and was, in the eyes of his daughter, a courageous, selfless, and loving man. Sonora's father was born in June, so she chose to hold the first Father's Day celebration in Spokane, Washington on the 19th of June, 1910.

In 1924 President Calvin Coolidge proclaimed the third Sunday in June as Father's Day. President Nixon, in 1972, established a permanent national observance of Father's Day to be held on the third Sunday of June. So Father's Day was born as a token of love and gratitude that a daughter cherishes for her beloved father. Roses are the Father's Day flowers: red to be worn for a living father and white if the father has died.

Monday, June 13, 2011


By Mahtab Bashir

With the theme "Children in hazardous work" for the World Day against Child Labour on June 12 (Sunday), Pakistan like other countries of the world is observing this day to mark the adoption of the landmark International Labour Organization (ILO) Convention No. 182, which addresses the need for action to tackle the worst forms of child labour.

While celebrating progress made since t
he Convention's adoption in 1999, the World Day highlights continuing challenges, such as the millions of children involved in hazardous work.

This problem affects a wide variety of jobs and industries and is widespread in both developed and developing nations. The internation
al community has identified hazardous work as among the worst forms of child labour it has targeted for eradication by 2016. The World Day Against Child Labour is intended to focus global attention on this practice and call for urgent action to combat it.

While the world is observing International Day Against Child Labour, Noreen Bibi is all set to donate her only minor son Ali on the same day.

Someone rightly classified Pakistani society saying, “Society comprises two classes: those who have more food than appetite, and those who have more appetite than food.” Mothers have wishful thinking to pass on her kids hunger free life, quality education, and shelter for their protection to name few. Hunger is one inheritance no mother wants to give her child, yet millions of poor mothers have this for generations in Pakistan.

This downtrodden woman named Noreen Bibi who is living her life with four children, an unemployed husband at Taramri Chowk, Rawalpindi is struggling to feed her 6 members family on a meager income working as a servant in domestic houses works.

Noreen with the utter mortification announced that she wants to donate her son Ali aged 2 years to childless families or to those who have sympathy for children. Criticizing the prevalent Islamic values in the ‘land of Pure’, she said if poverty is my destination, I will request Christians, Ahmadi’s and other non-Muslims to nurture my beloved kid for the sake of his better future, forever as to her “Poverty is the mother of crime” but she has no other options available.

Noreen has three daughters and a son named Ali who is 2 years old. Her husband Khalid Malik was an employee in Pakistan Telecommunication Company Limited (PTCL) in Rawalpindi was forced to quit his job few years back and since than he is earning nothing.

Talking to this scribe Noreen said, “I am living in Rawalpindi in a rented one room on Rs 3000/ month rent. I am suffering with various diseases asthma, high blood pressure, heart ailment to name few. My husband some day gets earning through daily labour work and another day he gets nothing. Many a times I went to government s
chools to seek admission for my kids but they refused to admit them on the grounds that children are not familiar to ABC of education,” Noreen said mournfully.

Noreen while talking to Daily Times, handed over a letter she wrote to Khadim-e-Punjab Mian Shahbaz Sharif and federal government to help her as she is in dire straights. “Those who are living in palaces and luxury houses could not be aware what I am going through at the moment. They do not know what is poverty, who is poor, and what is hopelessness. I am forced to beg alms, ‘Kairat’, ‘Zakaat’, and ‘Chanda’ to nurture my innocent children. On the other hand, government officials of Benazir Income Support Programme (BISP) and of those working for educational policies are giving opportunities to their own kids but unfortunately, my kids have not seen the premises of any school. Food, cloth, shelter are not visible in my dreams even and nurturing of my children are impossible in such circumstances,” she wrote in her letter.

In the backdrop of “Poverty is like punishment for a crime you didn't commit”, Noreen quoted a recent incident of her son saying that in Islamic country and society, when my son was died because of poverty, and at the time of his burial, I was forced to give money for 4 feet grave of my kid when I do not have a penny,” she said wiping her tears.

Noreen said family disaster occurred as soon as my husband was fired illegally from a government department and now there is no hope for tomorrow. She requested philanthropists at large to contact her on her cell No. 03365011070.

ISLAMABAD: Arshad Mehmood, Executive Director (ED), Society for the Protection of the Rights of the Child (SPARC) said that economic disparity is on alarming stage and we read such news on a daily basis when woman commits suicide, sell her children, or engaged them in bonded labour due to poverty. “Government should focus on these issues and streamline its organizations BISP, or Bait-ul-Maal in particular to look after these sort of cases and do something concrete for the welfare of these poor,” Mehmood said. He said it is the fundamental responsibility of government to give basic rights to all individuals. He said these children are also used on political grounds as well.

ISLAMABAD: Capt (r) Javed Ahmed, incharge Edhi Foundation (EF) in Islamabad said that selling or donating beloved children due to sheer poverty is now a common phenomenon in Pakistan. “Government should work seriously to deal such issues like unemployment, poverty, education and health but unfortunately none of these issues are being tackled seriously. Edhi Foundation is committed to give shelter to homeless people who are considered people of lesser God. Ahmed said Noreen should contact us in this regard.

ISLAMABAD: Talking to Daily Times Najmud Din, Vice Chairman (VC), Human Rights Commission of Pakistan (HRCP) said that this is gruesome situation and Noreen is not the only case, there are millions of such cases exist not only in Pakistan but all over the world due to poverty. “I must say government should move forward to resolve these issues of poverty, education and health as they are the fundamental rights of every individual and responsibility of state. There are few government run organizations working to resolve these issues and they must play their part. There were millions of IDP’s living in various places due to natural calamities who are facing the same plight and people of Pakistan themselves helped them out whereas government organizations remained in slumber mode,” Najam said adding government should give every individual the right of food, education, health and shelter.

Friday, June 10, 2011


By Saeed Minhas

An Increasing sense of paranoia continues to creep into the society where unknown faces ranging from Taliban to secret agencies and now even Rangers personnel are becoming trigger happy knowing very well that their acts would eventually be given a blanket cover by an
internal or even a judicial inquiry and if nothing else works than by their spin doctors.

Keeping aside the ground reality that Nawaz league is desperate to launch itself on national horizon as an aggressive and pro-people party and how much they will gain from this new found spin to cover their past follies, Khawaja Saad Rafiq just set the tone for the rest of the parliamentarians including few from treasury benches to come really hard on the conduct of armed forces and secret agencies. As his voice was reverberating in the hall, parliamentarians made a bee line to add fuel to the fire against armed forces by mentioning the very recent events as well which brought commotion to the entire nation and thus kept asking for cutting down their huge budgetary allocations.

Javed Hashmi while reminding everyone of Dhaka debacle, repeatedly asked the federal government in genera and politicians in particular to rise above their political folds and join hands to curb this rising trend of extremism amongst state institutions like Army and Rangers.

Senators on the other hand remained equally upbeat in condemning the cold blooded murder of a teenage by Rangers and took Rehman Malik for a ride for trying to cover this brutal act of state terrorism. Malik is supposedly responsible for manning the Rangers throughout the country but knowing an open secret that how much he can do, will it be of any use to ask him for a real inquiry, asked one of the disgruntled member of PPP after the session.

Going on the respond to his own query, he said that certainly there is no point in doing that because the supposed man of crisis of the present government is already sitting on more than two dozen inquiries including the one about his own leader’s assassination. Therefore, he said that let him be a free roaming minister and continue to see himself on TV screens for almost everything ranging from politics to policing, from foreign ministry to spokesperson of the armed forces and thus materalise his ultimate dream of becoming not the de fecto but a de jure foreign minister of the country.

But as an ANP stalwart later mentioned while sitting in cafeteria that neither any resignation is coming forth nor any remorse will be felt by those who committed this and many other such brutal acts against the innocent civilians in the past. Another seasoned senator roaming around power corridors since 1970s seconded it by reminding us all that only a strong political dispensation can become an answer to their pshychological and over-arching domination, which is hard to imagine at this point of time.

Revisiting the fateful days of 1970s when the army had to lay arms in front of the enemy, he said that though morale of the army was very low at that time as well-- just like it was when Musharraf lost charms for the west or just after OBL or Mehran Base issues--and they felt some remorse as well and were not coming out of the barracks in uniforms but still they did not let a strong civilian government of Bhutto to conduct an inquiry for quite some time and when it eventually was formed then they did not let it see the light of the day.

He even did not minced his words to mention the dirty role of judiciary in this regard by saying that had they not been sitting in the lapse of uniformed people, Pakistan would have been heading an altogether different path by now. But, mentioning towards his silvery-white hair, he said that after all army is a national institution and it has become addicted to certain perks and privileges, therefore, either the ruling elite have to give them a permanent role through constitutional amendments or if they want to keep them confined to the barrack even then they have to shun their petty differences and define some kind of TORs for them to sort this issue once for all.

Otherwise, he opined firmly that things will continue to go from bad to worse and rule of law will remain elusive for the commoners in this country.

What remained an issue of interest throughout this debate was the concern of the parliamentarians about the importance of parliament. It has become an unfortunate norm that whosoever sits on the top chair assumes that it has become his/her responsibility to not only defend the state institutions under the fear that incase of denial to do so would mean an end to the rule.

Same was the case with the government of Mr. Gilani, as it has shown with consistency a pattern that no matter what either they will remain silent to let the masters speak and then follow them or sometime they fail to understand the silence of the local masters and starts following the foreign ones without ever applying their own political minds to set the tone. If wikileaks are something to go
by then revelations made therein are enough to put not only politicians but even our military janta to shame.

Will they ever realize that foreign masters are uniting on one point that no matter how they have been using or mis0using this land of the pure, now it has become an internal problem of Pakistan and therefore, they seem to be fed up with the leadership (both civilian and military) and have taken up the road of direct intereference by riding on their dollars and Euros and if they fail to read the writing on the wall, then Tunisia, Egypt or Syria might have been saved by Saudis (for the sake of their own kingdom) but there will hardly be anyone standing for us and we might have to face a Libyan fate. But the question remains that will the political leadership be able to come out of its shadows-of-fear and take the lead in sorting out the mess created by all the state institutions?