Indian cyber-attack targeting gadgets of govt officials, military personnel identified: ISPR

(August 12, 2020)

RAWALPINDI: The Inter-Services Public Relations (ISPR) on Wednesday said that Pakistan's intelligence agencies had identified a major cyber-attack by Indian intelligence agencies, targeting the mobile phones and gadgets of government officials and military personnel.

In a statement, the military's media affairs wing said that the cyber-attack involved a "range of cybercrimes, including deceitful fabrication, by hacking the personal mobiles and technical gadgets of government officials and military personnel".

The statement added that various targets of "hostile intelligence agencies" were being investigated. Pakistan Army has enhanced necessary measures to thwart such activities, including action against violators of standard operating procedures on cyber security, it added.

"An advisory is also being sent to all government departments/ institutions for identifying lapses and enhancing respective cyber security measures," the ISPR said.

On July 26, Pakistan Army troops had shot down an Indian spying quadcopter in Pandu sector along the Line of Control (LoC).

"The quadcopter had intruded 200 meters on Pakistan’s side of the LoC," ISPR Director General Major General Babar Iftikhar had said in a tweet, adding that this was the tenth Indian quadcopter to be shot down by Pakistan Army troops this year.

Pakistan Army Carries Out Relief Operation in Flood-Stricken Dadu Area

(August 10, 2020)

KARACHI: Rescue and relief efforts by the Pakistan Army continued in Sindh's Dadu district on Sunday after the recent monsoon rains breached the flood protection bund of the Nai Gaj Dam and marooned people residing in surrounding areas. "Pakistan Army troops [are] busy in relief & rescue efforts in various areas of Dadu to help people affected by recent hill torrent and breach of Flood Protection Bund of Nai Gaj Dam," said the ISPR on Sunday.

According to the military's media wing, Pakistan Army's boats are rescuing stranded people and transporting them to "safer places". It also said that a medical camp has been established to provide care to the affectees and hot meals were being given to people. The ISPR also said that rangers and army personnel have rescued more than 100 people from the Johi Tehsil of the district.

Later, the teams of Pakistan Army and Navy visited Dadu, Jhal Magsi along with medical and engineering teams to assist the civil administration to rescue stranded people to safer places. “Hot meal served to 1,000 stranded people. Jhal Magsi -Gandawah main colonies have been connected,” ISPR said. It added the Pasi bridge has been opened for all kind of traffic.

“In Jhal Magsi all Hindu families struck in Wangu hills have been rescued and moved to safer places after eight hours-long rescue operation,” the ISPR said. Giving an update on the damage, the ISPR said the N-65 near Bibi Nani bridge and Pinjra Bridge have been blocked due to the high level of water. “Main gas transmission line damaged near Bibi Nani bridge due to rain, while Quetta - Jacobabad, Gwadar- Karachi and Sibbi- Kohlu have been blocked at various places,” it added. 

Meanwhile, the Provincial Disaster Management Authority of Sindh said it had dispatched six motorboats and more than 5000 rescue and relief items including tents, mosquito nets, jerrycans, water coolers and kitchen sets to Deputy Commissioner Dadu on Saturday to facilitate those affected by the flash floods in Johi area.

The PDMA also said that it was in continuous contact with the army and navy to initiate air assistance and rescue through helicopters of stranded people.


Rescue efforts by the army in Dadu had begun on Saturday after heavy rains breached the Nai Gaj Dam flooding the nearby villages. The ISPR had said that the recent rains have caused damage to the Nai Gaj Dam, resulting in the breach of the flood protection bund of the dam. It had also said that at least 12 villages of the district were badly affected by the breach.

Earlier this week, the Pakistan Meteorological Department (PMD) had issued a warning that Karachi and lower Sindh can suffer from urban flooding in the days to come, as the fourth looming monsoon spell may wreak more havoc in the province than the earlier three spells.

The institution predicted that the fourth spell of monsoon rain in Karachi, which is forecast from August 7-8, can result in more rain than the previous three spells. A low-lying pressure system, formed in the Bay of Bengal, is expected to enter Sindh on August 6. "Under the influence of this weather system strong monsoon currents are expected to penetrate in Sindh, South Punjab and Eastern Balochistan from Thursday (evening/night) to Saturday," the PMD noted in its latest advisory.

"Widespread rain/wind-thundershowers, with isolated heavy to very heavy falls are expected in Karachi, Hyderabad, Thatta, Badin, Tharparker, Umerkot, Mirpurkhas, Sanghar, Tando Allah Yar, Matiyari, Tando Muhammad Khan, Jamshoro, Dadu and Shaheed Benazirabad from Thursday (evening/night) to Saturday."

PM Imran to Inagurate Pakistan's Largest Tree Plantation Move Today

(August 9, 2020)

ISLAMABAD: Prime Minister Imran Khan will kick off the biggest tree plantation drive in Pakistan's history today as the country plans to plant 3.5 million saplings in a single day. Over a million volunteers of the Prime Minister's Tiger Force will also plant trees as part of the government's '10 Billion Tree Tsunami' initiative, marking the 'Tiger Force Day'. 

In a message on Saturday, the prime minister had said he has also asked the members of parliament, ministers and chief ministers to participate in the plantation drive. Expressing hope that the drive will turn into the "biggest tree planting campaign" in history, he said: “The target is 35 lakh trees in a day, though we will try to exceed it.”

According to details, to participate in the plantation drive volunteers have taken charge of their roles and divided into different teams to dispense their duties. Following the prime minister’s directives, the distribution of 350,000 saplings has been completed so that they can be planted today.

Special Assistant to PM on Youth Affairs Usman Dar in his message ahead of the campaign, asked opposition politicians Shehbaz Sharif, Bilawal Bhutto, Khawaja Asif and others to join the plantation drive. “The Sindh government should [join us in] favour of national interest,” the politician had said.

Dar said the prime minister will also be in the field along with other volunteers and the general public tomorrow, adding the drive will begin from Islamabad under the premier, while CM Punjab Usman Buzdar will commence it from Sialkot.

He added that civil society, district administration, forestry department and the citizenry should work together to make the campaign successful.

Advisor to Prime Minister on Climate Change Malik Amin Aslam while addressing a press conference on Saturday said the premier would plant a sapling in Korang, Islamabad. The advisor said all provinces, including Gilgit Baltistan, Azad Jammu and Kashmir and Islamabad Capital Territory will participate in plantation campaign, with one million members of Tiger Force joining the campaign. “A target of 300,000 trees for plantation has been set for Sindh, 1.2 million for Punjab and two million trees in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa,” he said. “In the federal capital, around 1.2 million saplings would be planted under the initiative.”

Referring to a World Bank report on climate change, Aslam said if action was not taken, six districts of Pakistan would be under threat to become inhabitable till 2050. These districts include; Hyderabad, Sukkur, Mirpur Khas, Lahore, Faisalabad and Multan.

Minister of State for Climate Change Zartaj Gul has urged the youth of the country to come forward and plant maximum trees on "Plant for Pakistan Day" to achieve the overwhelming plantation target of 3.5 million plants under 10 Billion Tree Tsunami initiative.

In her video message on Twitter, Gul said PM Imran n was going to launch the largest ever one-day plantation of the country on Sunday. “I have a belief that whenever our youth joins any movement it becomes successful. I request the youth to fully participate in the one-day plantation to make it a success,” she said.

The adviser noted that the first billion trees' target under Ten Billion Tree Tsunami initiative was going to be achieved by June 2021 as the stocks of saplings were augmented from 50 million to 300 million. These saplings would be sufficient to meet the massive afforestation initiative. Aslam added that Pakistan was the fifth most vulnerable country to climate change in the world and it is was our responsibility to act now.

Pakistan’s development was quoted in the world during the decade of 1960s, he remarked.

The PM mentioned the construction as one of the important sectors for economic development and jobs creation, and hoped that the civil officers, within their jurisdictions, would play an important role in promotion of construction sector in the province.

Meanwhile, in a meeting with the Members of National Assembly (MNAs) from Faisalabad, PM Imran Khan said the federal government would extend all-out cooperation to promote industrial and business sectors of the country. He said Faisalabad had a key importance in national economy.

The prime minister told the parliamentarians that incentives to the business and construction sectors would ensure development in the country. The steps were being taken for welfare of small and medium enterprises, he added.

The MNAs apprised the premier that corruption was rife in the Police Department at lower level, and the DSPs and SHOs were committing corruption openly.

The premier expressed his strong annoyance over such a situation in the Punjab province and advised Chief Minister Usman Buzdar, also present in the meeting, to visit Faisalabad himself next week and resolve the issues.

The PM also met Punjab CM Usman Buzdar separately and discussed matters pertaining to provincial development.

Prime Minister Imran Khan directed the authorities concerned to facilitate the construction sector investors maximum so as to encourage more people to gain benefit from the incentives offered by the government.

Chairing a meeting of the National Coordinating Committee for Housing and Construction here, he stressed devising a comprehensive plan to encourage investors towards the construction sector, in view of giving a boost to the national economy.

The chief secretaries of Sindh and Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa gave the meeting a briefing on the launch of One-Window Online Portal set up for public convenience.

It was informed that with the launch of the portal, any aspiring citizen would be able to apply online to start a construction project. The portal would reduce human intervention as it would help track the progress of applications, besides determining the performance of the officers concerned. Also, PM Imran Khan said a uniform education system was the best way to end discrimination among different segments of the society.

Chairing a review meeting on reforms in the education system of Punjab, the prime minister said real development was possible only through education and by ensuring access to it across the board. Provincial Education Minister Murad Raas gave a detailed briefing on reforms and new projects in the education system of Punjab.

The prime minister appreciated the training of teachers by the Punjab government and the measures adopted for uniform education system and related legal reforms. He laid special emphasis on providing facilities in schools.

Boats Burnt, Retreat No Way to Go back: PM

(August 8, 2020)

LAHORE: Prime Minister Imran Khan on Friday said he had burnt the boats and there was no option except for putting the country on the road to progress. The remarks came at the inaugural ceremony of the Rs5trillion Ravi Riverfront Urban Development Project, here.

The premier said he would personally oversee the project, which had been sought after since 2004, and which he was undertaking after "burning the boats" so there was no option of going back. "Failure is not an option at all," he added.

He said the country had reached a "tipping point" after which it would only see progress. The premier said two years were spent by his government saving the country from default. "And then the NRO crowd gathered around everywhere, demanding an NRO (concession) in exchange for FATF legislation or progress on the Kashmir issue.” Boats burnt, retreat no way’ . PID

Speaking of the importance of the project for which he laid the foundation, he said that it is instrumental if Lahore is to be saved. "The rate at which our population is growing, if we are to save Lahore, the project is something that is totally unavoidable now," he said, while addressing the inaugural ceremony.

He said that the city's water level has also dropped drastically. "In the last 15 years, I think it has dropped 800 feet." "When you are flying into the city you can see the unplanned settlements from above. The green areas are on the decline. There will be food security issues. Pakistan has never witnessed wheat shortages before but now we have seen a drop by 1.5 million tonnes.

"Our crop growing areas are reducing. We used to have a lot of cotton growing areas. We used to export the commodity. More sugarcane growing is also a factor," he continued. "But the point is, Lahore has changed dramatically," he added.

"This river used to be such a big river and has now shrunk into nothing but a sewerage stream […] it stinks in the winter." He said that one must have no doubt of the dire need of the project. "Without this, Lahore will see water problems that Karachi faces today."

The premier said that the pollution levels in Lahore are "off the charts, way beyond what adversely affects the health". He said with unplanned settlements springing up everywhere, it has become necessary to make Lahore a modern city with all the modern amenities.

"Modern cities grow vertically, not horizontally, and it is then easier for the government to take care of their needs like water and sewerage." The premier then went on to detail the government's plans for the river project.

He said to save the river,extra water will be released into it and more barrages created. "And the sewerage that is coming into the river will be treated and clean water released back," he said. PM Imran said with this, not only will the river's depleted water levels be restored but the city's water supply will no longer be threatened.

"Lahore will be saved, the water problem solved, and a modern city will be created keeping in mind all environmental concerns," he said, adding that six million trees will be planted in a demarcated "forest area".

He said previously projects such as the Metro, or Orange Train were completed but "they are not the type to lead to wealth creation". "In fact, you will end up giving Rs28bn in subsidy for those projects which you created after heavy borrowing."

The premier said with a project such as this, wealth creation is made possible, along with job creation and a host of other benefits. "A chain reaction is witnessed in the country. Such projects boost the economy." He said that the project will cost Rs5 trillion. "Of course it will be funded by private investment, not the government," he clarified.

The prime minister said that with the coronavirus, the country had been accorded reprieve to be able to inject capital from the informal economy into projects — previously unallowed due to obligations to international financial organisations.

"Now we have till December 31 to make use of funds from the informal economy as well." He said that it was a splendid opportunity for overseas Pakistanis, who usually only invest in "plots". "These nine million overseas Pakistanis have money equivalent to Pakistan's GDP."

Also, it will go a long way for job creation, he said. "There are 40 other industries associated with the construction sector." "Furthermore, it will lead to wealth creation. With this wealth, we will be able to spend on the underprivileged sections of society, on children's education, and on the health sector," the premier added. He also said that with the accrued monetary gains, the mounting debt of the country will be reduced.

Separately, PM Imran Khan also addressed through video-link the civil officers of Punjab, including the secretaries of administrative departments, commissioners, deputy commissioners and regional police officers.

Stressing zero-tolerance for corruption, he called for introducing a system of “reward and punishment” in the government departments to improve governance and public-sector performance.

“Corruption always starts from the top and elite class. This is our country. We have to live and die here. We have to correct the system for future generations. Improved governance is vital for the country’s development,” he added.

Punjab Chief Minister Usman Buzdar, Chief Secretary and Inspector General of Police were also present. The prime minister said the country could make progress by following principles of the state of Madina, which ensured rule of law, protection of weaker segments and promotion of education.

Officers had very important role in the achievement of that objective, he said. “Be empathetic with the poor. Do away with the thana culture and adopt the policy of public service.”

The prime minister appreciated the Punjab administration for taking effective measures during the coronavirus pandemic. “You will not face any political pressure. Follow merit. I stand with every officer who will follow merit,” he told the officers.

Imran said as the country’s economy remained burdened under debt, Pakistan had been facing difficult economic situation, which caused resource constraints for education, health and development projects. He said the present government started an anti-corruption drive as the economy had received a big dent from the menace. 

On Afghanistan, she said that Pakistan was committed to the resumption of peace and reconciliation process in its neighbouring country as “any delay would help the spoilers to inflict damage upon the situation”.

She said the government is in touch with all stakeholders and interlocutors for early resumption of the Afghan peace process.

Pakistan Rules Out Any Back-Door Diplomacy with India

(August 7, 2020)

ISLAMABAD: Islamabad has ruled out any back-channel diplomacy with New Delhi, saying it is out of question owing to worsening human rights situation in Indian Illegally Occupied Jammu and Kashmir (IIOJK). “Not at all in the circumstances we are. Not in the face of the brutality that is happening in IIOJK,” Foreign Office Spokesperson Aisha Farooqui said on Thursday in her last media briefing after her successor Zahid Hafeez Chaudhry was appointed on the post.

She clarified that situation of IIOJK is deteriorating day by day and Pakistan would not consider any back-channel diplomacy in the current scenario. The spokesperson said Pakistan valued its longstanding relations with the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation (OIC), however, the “people of Pakistan had some expectations from the body over the Jammu and Kashmir dispute”.

Asked about the remarks of Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi who mentioned the delay on the part of OIC to convene the meeting of Council of Foreign Ministers, she said Pakistan “acknowledged and deeply appreciated the OIC’s role in highlighting the issue”.

She said three meetings of the OIC Contact Group on Jammu and Kashmir were held in one year, two of ministerial level.

On Indian spy Kulbhushan Jadhav, Farooqui said Pakistan had conveyed India the August 3 directive of the Islamabad High Court (IHC).

She said as per the IHC, India had been communicated through diplomatic channels for engaging a lawyer for the serving Navy Commander.

The FO spokesperson said yesterday’s meeting of the United Nations Security Council (UNSC) on Jammu and Kashmir was a clear testimony that the dispute was “neither an internal matter of India nor a bilateral issue, but a matter of international significance”.

She rejected the impression that Pakistan’s new political map was a diversion from its 72-year-old stance.

“Pakistan still supports the resolution of Jammu and Kashmir dispute in accordance with the resolutions of UNSC and as per the aspirations of Kashmiri people.”


disputed territory.

The UNSC took up the issue on the first anniversary of India’s illegal annexation of IIOJK. Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi told reporters after the meeting that the UNSC convened its meeting on Kashmir within 72-hour of Pakistan’s request.

China and Turkey also reiterated their principled stance over the Kashmir issue and stressed that any unilateral change in the status quo in IIOJK was illegal and invalid, as it did not contribute to peace and stability in the region.

PM Imran welcomes UNSC for Kashmir issue

(August 7, 2020)

ISLAMABAD: Prime Minister Imran Khan has welcomed the United Nation Security Council's (UNSC) discussion on Kashmir dispute, which has been on its agenda for more than 70 years. In a series of tweets on Thursday, the premier said that the UNSC, under the UN Charter, not only has the responsibility for maintaining international peace and security but also of ensuring implementation of its resolutions.

"We thank the Council members who expressed concern over the deteriorating human rights & humanitarian situation in IIOJK, advised against escalation of tensions, underscored the need for respecting international law & called for a peaceful resolution of the dispute," he said in a tweet.

Talking about Pakistan's position regarding the issue, PM Imran said that the dispute must be resolved in accordance with the relevant UNSC resolutions granting Kashmiri people the right to self-determination under a free and fair plebiscite. He further said that Pakistan will continue to extend all possible support to the Kashmiri people until they secure this inalienable right.

I welcome the UNSC for again taking up the Jammu & Kashmir dispute, which has been on its agenda for over 70 yrs. The UNSC, under the UN Charter, not only has the responsibility for maintaining international peace & security but also of ensuring implementation of its resolutions. On Wednesday, the UNSC had expressed concerns over the human rights situation in IIOJK, particularly Indian authorities’ continued oppression as well as attempts to change its demography.

The 15-member Council had met to discuss the current Kashmir situation on the request of Pakistan. China, which is a permanent member of the UNSC, played a key role in arranging the closed-door discussions for the third time arranging the closed-door discussions for the third time in a year after India revoked the special status of the

The joint sitting of the Parliament demanded India to remove restrictions on media, internet, movement and peaceful assembly in the occupied territory, besides, repealing the draconian laws. Parliament in its resolution stressed the BJP government’s threatening statements, belligerent rhetoric and irresponsible posture which pose a grave threat to peace and stability in South Asia.

Parliament also welcomed the three discussions on the Kashmir dispute at the United Nations Security Council after a gap of fifty-five years. Shahbaz Sharif in his speech said the efforts of the PTI government on Kashmir were confined to mere passage of few resolutions.

He said on one hand Imran Khan advises the nation to watch drama “Artughal’ and on the other hand he keeps waiting for call from Modi. “This is also a matter of shame for us that Modi never receives calls from our prime minister,” he said. “Today the government has nothing for Kashmiris except from speeches, writings and telephone calls,” he said, adding there has been complete silence on Kashmir issue. Shahbaz Sharif alleged that the present government was damaging the Kashmir cause.

During his speech, the opposition leader also apologized to the JUI-F for not taking its leadership into confidence on FATF legislation. Minister for Communication Murad Saeed who took the

Joint Session of Parliament Passes MLA Bill

(August 7, 2020)

ISLAMABAD: The joint sitting of the parliament Thursday passed the Mutual Legal Assistance (Criminal Matters) Bill-2020 with majority voice after reaching consensus with the main opposition parties, the PML-N and PPP.

The bill is aimed at providing legal support to the requesting state (foreign country) by executing necessary actions on its territory in criminal cases warranting shared assistance. The legislation, however, was rejected by the JUI-F, JI, Pakhtunkhwa Milli Awami Party (PkMAP), National Party and Mohsin Dawar. Former chairman Senate and senior leader of the PPP Mian Raza Rabbani also abstained from voting in the passage of the bill.

The protesting members continued to raise slogans of “No, No” during passage of the bill. Opposition Leader Shahbaz Sharif protested against not giving time to protesting members to express their view. “This is against traditions of the parliament,” he said, adding that Maulana Asad Mehmood and Sirajul Haq wanted to speak on the bill. The government initiated the bill in the National Assembly on September 13, 2019 and it was passed thereon January 06, 2020. However, it was not passed by the Senate within 90 days and tabled in the joint session of Parliament.

The PPP lawmaker, Agha Rafiullah, and PML-N lawmaker Mohsin Shah Nawaz Ranjha withdrew their amendments to the bill. All the amendments moved by the Minister for Law and Justice Farogh Naseem were passed by the House. Two new clauses 27 and 28 were inserted in the bill which were passed by the House.

The law proposes exchange of information and criminals with countries to meet a requirement of the Financial Action Task Force (FATF). The government accommodated an amendment proposed by Shahbaz Sharif which says that mutual assistance would be refused if request made by a state is in violation of the International Convention on Human Rights.

According to statement of objects and reasons of this act, increase in transnational organised crime has made it imperative for the international community including Pakistan to improve effectiveness of legal instrument. International cooperation in criminal matters through mutual legal assistance is intended to bridge existing gaps in respective countries towards effective law enforcement.

The joint sitting of the Parliament also asked India to stop its illegal measures to change demographic structure of the Indian Occupied Jammu and Kashmir (IOJ&K) and withdraw 900,000 troops from the occupied territory. The joint sitting unanimously adopted a resolution, rejecting emphatically India’s illegal and unilateral actions in IOJ&K since August 05, 2019. The resolution moved by Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi said the illegal actions are aimed at perpetuating India’s inhuman occupation of Jammu and Kashmir.

The resolution said that Kashmir is an internationally recognised dispute and longest outstanding item on the agenda of UN Security Council, categorically stating that illegal steps cannot alter the disputed status of the territory. Reiterating Pakistan's full support to the Kashmiri people in their legitimate struggle for right to self-determination, the Parliament demanded the Indian government to immediately lift military siege in IOJ&K and rescind the illegal and unilateral actions of August 05, 2019.

The resolution passed by the Parliament underscored that Jammu and Kashmir is an internationally recognised dispute and longest outstanding item on the agenda of the UNSC and categorically states that illegal Indian steps do not and cannot alter its disputed status.

The Parliament called upon the international community to use all tools at its disposal to hold India accountable for its illegal and unilateral actions and human rights violations against the Kashmiri people. It urged the international community to pressurise India to adhere to its international human rights obligations and allow international media and Independent observers entry into IOJ&K to investigate and examine the excessive use of force and violence against the Kashmiri people.

The process will be completed before closing of the current financial year.The CCI directed that the Ministry of Federal Education & Professional Training, in consultation with provinces, should formulate a transition and integration plan, which will be presented during next CCI meeting. The meeting approved placement of Annual Reports for the Years 2017-18, 2018-19, 2019-20 before the Senate and National Assembly. Implementation status of decisions of 41st meeting of the CCI was reviewed during the meeting.

Acute Gas Shortages Expected in the Year 2021-22, CCI

(August 7, 2020)

ISLAMABAD: The Council of Common Interests (CCI) was Thursday told that the country would be facing major gas shortage by winter 2021-2022, as it was mutually agreed to evolve consensus for a major push for new exploration and production, conservation of domestic gas and rationalization of price mechanism.

The forum decided that 50 per cent share of receipts, collected under the head of Windfall Levy on crude oil, condensate and natural gas under the petroleum policy, 2012 would be shared with the provinces. In this connection, Prime Minister Imran Khan chaired the 42nd meeting of Council of Common Interests, which considered a number of matters and deliberated on the proposal of windfall levy sharing before arriving at a decision.

SAPM on petroleum gave a detailed presentation to the Council on annual demand and supply situation of gas with special reference to future requirements and dwindling domestic gas reserves.

While presenting gas production, consumption and transmission data from various provinces, it was informed that the country would face major gas shortage by winter 2021-2022. It was recommended that national consensus was needed for a major push for new exploration and production, conservation of domestic gas and rationalization of price mechanisms to avoid impending crises.

The meeting was informed that the federal government was organizing a summit of industry experts to discuss various options to meet this impending challenge and requested the provinces for their active participation.

The strategy to combat Covid-19 was presented before the Council. The meeting appreciated the strategy adopted by the government to combat pandemic. The CCI unanimously approved Alternative & Renewable Energy Policy 2019.

Discussing recommendations of Attorney General for Pakistan on Water Accord 1991, the CCI was informed that a committee comprising technical experts of federal and provincial governments had been notified to look into the issue of fair distribution of water among provinces. The CCI directed the committee to complete its work in one month.

The meeting was also apprised of progress on installation of the telemetry system. The meeting considered a proposed amendment to the Oil & Gas Regulatory Authority Ordinance, 2002, as suggested by the Sindh government.

The CCI tasked the Ministry of Petroleum with exploring the possibility of providing the provinces with a suitable mechanism to give their input to the regulatory body. The meeting considered a request of the government of Punjab for handing the control of lower portion of Chashma Right Bank Canal from the Ministry of Water Resources over to the government of the Punjab.

Agreeing to the proposal, the CCI constituted a committee comprising representatives of IRSA, the government of Punjab and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa to work out modalities and finalize bilateral agreement between the two provinces in this regard.

The CCI deliberated upon the future role and functioning of the National Commission for Human Development and Basic Education Community Schools. It was decided, in principle, to transfer the existing NCHD and BECS schools, teachers and students from Ministry of Federal Education & Professional Training to Education Departments of respective provinces/regions.

which the Hindu extremists and zealots have laid claims.

“The international community, the United Nations and relevant international organizations should play their part in saving the Islamic heritage sites in India from the ‘Hindutva’ regime and ensure protection and religious rights of minorities in India,” the spokesperson stressed.

Pakistan Slams Construction of Ram Mandir on Babri Masjid’s Site (August 6, 2020)

ISLAMABAD: Pakistan on Wednesday reiterated its strong condemnation of the construction of ‘Ram Mandir’ on the site where historic Babri Masjid stood for around five centuries.

“The flawed judgment of the Indian Supreme Court paving the way for construction of the temple not only reflected the preponderance of faith over justice but also the growing majoritarianism in today’s India, where minorities, particularly Muslims and their places of worship, are increasingly under attack,” Foreign Office Spokesperson Aisha Farooqui said here in a statement.

The spokesperson said a temple built on the site of a historic mosque would remain a blot on the face of theso-called Indian democracy for the times to come. “The painful scenes of the demolition of Babri Masjid by the BJP (Bharatiya Janata Party) and its extremist Hindu affiliates in 1992 remain fresh in the minds of Muslims across the globe.

Since then, the OIC (Organization of Islamic Cooperation) has passed numerous resolutions condemning the heinous act of demolishing the centuries-old mosque,” she added. She said future generations of the Muslims would continue to be cognizant of the new illegitimate structure which the Hindutva-driven BJP had campaigned for, and was bent upon constructing as part of its agenda of converting India into a Hindu Rashtra.

“Today’s event in Ayodhya reflected an unrelenting drive in this direction,” the spokesperson maintained. The extreme haste in starting the construction of a temple at the Babri Masjid site amidst the ravaging COVID-19 pandemic, anti-Muslim Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA), the looming National Register of Citizens (NRC) to disenfranchise Muslims, the targeted killings of Muslims in Delhi with state complicity early this year, and other anti-Muslim measures pointed to the fact how Muslims in India were being demonized, dispossessed, marginalized and subjected to targeted violence, she added.

The FO spokesperson said India’s gross and systematic human rights violations in the Indian Illegally Occupied Jammu & Kashmir (IIOJK), and BJP’s sinister design to change the demography of the occupied territory, all reflected the rising tide of the divisive and extremist ideology in India, which posed threat to religious harmony in India and to regional peace.

“The RSS-BJP combine is responsible for continued targeting and destruction of places of worship of Muslims in India in an organized manner, whether it was during the Gujarat pogrom 2002 or Delhi pogrom 2020,” she added. “The attacks by Hindu extremists on mosques have continued even during the on-going pandemic. Not only Muslims have been blamed for spreading the COVID-19 but their religious freedom has also come under attack by the BJP-RSS (Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh) zealots, who treat minorities as second-class citizens.”

Pakistan urges the Indian government to ensure safety, security and protection of minorities, particularly Muslims and their places of worship and other Islamic sites on 

ECNEC also approved the change in cost sharing ratios of the ADB and its co-financing partners for “Construction of BRT Red Line Project, Karachi” at the total cost of Rs78,384.33 million including FEC of Rs66,378.33 million (with cattle-based bio-methane as fuel technology). The project was already approved by Ecnec on August 29, 2019.

The PhD scholarship programme under US-Pakistan Knowledge Corridor (phase-1) was also approved by ECNEC at the revised cost of Rs25,226.274 million including FEC of Rs24,303.543 million. In the revised PC-1, the scope of the project has been curtailed to 1000 scholarships (from 1,500 scholarships) mainly due to appreciation of dollar rate against PKR and inclusion of tuition fee/ research grant.

ECNEC Approves Railways’ Most-Important Project, ML-1 in Pakistan

(August 6, 2020)

ISLAMABAD: The Executive Committee of National Economic Council (ECNEC) on Wednesday approved upgradation of Pakistan Railways’ Mainline-1 (ML-1) at estimated cost of $6.806 billion (equal to Rs11.44 trillion) under the China Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC).

“Alhamdolillah, Ecnec has approved the transformational railway project at a cost of $6.806 billion from Peshawar to Karachi (1,872km) including Havelian Dry Port and upgrading the Walton Academy,” Chairman CPEC Authority Lt Gen (retd) Asim Saleem Bajwa stated in a tweet on Wednesday.

However, former PML-N Minister Ahsan Iqbal stated that ML-1 CPEC game changer project for Pak Railways was agreed in 2016 with the Chinese side. Technical feasibility was completed in 2018. He said he was pleased that finally ECNEC has approved the ML-1 project after delay of two years but token allocation of Rs6 billion in the budget is inadequate to start the project.

According to official announcement made after the meeting, Adviser to Prime Minister on Finance and Revenue Dr Abdul Hafeez Shaikh chaired the meeting of ECNEC here at the Cabinet Division.

The project of Pakistan Railways for “upgradation of Pakistan Railways existing Mainline-1 (ML-1) and establishment of dry port near Havelian” was also approved by ECNEC at the rationalised cost of $6,806.783 million on cost sharing basis between the governments of China and Pakistan. The execution of the project shall be in three packages and in order to avoid commitment charges, the loan amount for each package will be separately contracted. Under this project, the existing 2,655km track will be upgraded.

The speed of passenger trains shall increase from 65/110 km/hr. to 165 km/hr. and line capacity will increase from 34 to 137/171 trains each way per day. The Ministry of Railways would constitute a project steering committee for effective supervision and implementation of the project.

ECNEC approved the Pakistan Single Window (PSW) project, FBR shall be the sponsoring agency for this project. The total cost of the project shall be Rs11,074.16 million including Rs9,020 million as FEC.

The project shall be completed by June 2023 and it is expected to enhance Pakistan’s global ranking in cross border trade related indicators. It will also serve as the integration point bridging cargo/logistics systems and other trade related processes.

The project will provide an automated single-entry centralised hub for submission and processing of 90 percent of the licences, permits, certificates and other documents (LPCOs) for external trade.

The Corona Infection is Decreasing Day by Day in Pakistan (August 5, 2020)

ISLAMABAD: In the last 24 hours, 10,690 tests were conducted in the country, with 432 new cases reported, while 15 deaths.

According to the NCOC, 432 new cases were reported and 15 deaths in the last 24 hours, with the number of patients with the corona virus reaching 2,80,461 across the country, while the number of patients who were cured rose to 2,49,397.      

10,690 tests were conducted in the last 24 hours. 4484 tests were conducted in Sindh, Punjab 4280, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, 766 in Islamabad, 246 in Balochistan, 85 in Gilgit Baltistan and 204 in Azad Kashmir. So far, 20,31,955 tests have been conducted across the country.

According to NCOC, the total death toll in the country rose to 5999. The number of patients affected by the corona virus in Sindh is 1,21,705, the number of patients in Punjab reported 93,336, in the KP affected by the corona virus

The number of patients was 34253, in Balochistan 11777,in Islamabad,  the number of affected patients were 15095, Azad Jammu and Kashmir 2097 and Gilgit Baltistan 2198.

The Corona Virus and Precautionary Measures:

Taking this precautionary measure against the corona virus can make it easier to win the war against the virus. Some morning should be spent in the sun, not to sit down, but to open the door windows and let the light sunlight come into the rooms. Instead of running the AC in the closed rooms, sit in the fan's air.

UV-containing sun-strains affect the proteins that are emerging on the external structure of the virus and weaken the virus. The high temperature or heat does not affect the virus, but the high level of UV-containing virus weakens.

Heat the water and put it in the thermos and sip a cup of semi-heated water every 1 hour. The virus first infects the throat and reaches the lungs, using hot water, the virus goes from the throat to the stomach, where the virus is dead.

Day of the Martyrs Police: Chief Minister Usman Buzdar's Visits Memorial Near Atchison College (August 5, 2020)

LAHORE: Chief Minister Punjab, Sardar Usman Buzdar visited the police memorial near Aitchison College on the highway of Quaid Azam on the occasion of the day of the " Martyrs of Police".

Chief Minister Usman Buzdar has made a flower-sheet on the memorial and won the police martyr's reward. "I salute the courage of the police officers who give their lives to protect the lives of the people - the police martyrs are ours.

The day is the day to remember the great sacrifices of the brave police sputum’s - the sacrifices of the martyrs will always be remembered. The Punjab government is also in full solidarity with the martyred police officers and the families of the young men.

It is our responsibility to look after the families of the martyrs and the duty is to stand up and stand with the families of the martyrs. The families of the martyred policemen will not be left alone. Provincial Information Minister Fiaz ul Hassan Chauhan, Inspector General Police, CCPO Lahore, Secretary Information and Deputy Commissioner Lahore were also present at the event.

State Bank of Pakistan Provides Loans Worth Rs 5.98 Bn. Under Refinance Scheme to Deal with the Corona Virus to 29 Hospitals and Medical Centers Throughout Country (August 4, 2020)

LAHORE: State Bank has provided loans worth Rs. 5. Bn., under the refinance scheme to deal with the corona virus to 29 hospitals and medical centers in the country.

According to the State Bank of Pakistan, as of July 24, 2020, 35 hospitals and medical centres have applied for loans worth Rs 7.11 Bn., of which 29 applications were approved. The bank had in May, 2020 raised the loan limit for hospitals and medical centers from Rs 20 crores to Rs 50 crores to boost efforts to combat the corona virus.

State Bank is providing loans to banks at a rate of 3% per annum. According to the State Bank, the loan ceiling has resulted in a "covid-19 control situation". The large-scale facility is being provided for the treatment of covid-19 patients in Pakistan.

 

India Wants to Change the Population Ratio of Occupied Jammu And Kashmir, Which Is Against the International Law. Foreign Minister

ISLAMABAD: Pakistan has effectively exposed the serious human rights violations in India-occupied Jammu and Kashmir,  and India's Hindu-Toa policies at all international forums, Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi has said.

"The Aggressive and hateful policies of the Indian government have put the peace and security of the entire region at risk," he told media in Islamabad on Tuesday.

India wants to change the population ratio of occupied Jammu and Kashmir, which is a matter of international law violation, he said.

(August 3, 2020)

Lahore High Court Declares the Petition Against Punjab University's BA, B.Sc.Online Exam Unnecessary: (August 3, 2020)

LAHORE: The court rejected the application in the Lahore High Court against taking the B.A., B.Sc. exams online.

The court was presented by the Legal Advisor of Punjab University, Owais Khalid."Online exams by Punjab University are not mandatory, depending on the candidates whether they participate in the tests or not," he told the court.

Mr Justice Mazmal Akhtar Shabir heard the request of the citizen Syed Shakeel Rehman. The petitioner submitted to the court that Punjab University has announced to take B.A., B.Sc. exams online through a notification, starting August 5, 2020 the petitioner told the court that it is not possible for students to take online exams in such a short time.

The court rejected the application in the Lahore High Court against taking the B.A.,B.Sc. exams online. The court was presented by the Legal Advisor of Punjab University, Owais Khalid.

Every Organization Must Register by August 15, 2020: Punjab Charity Commission

(August 3, 2020)

LAHORE: The Punjab Charity Commission meeting was held under the chairmanship of senior member and chief executive officer Hassan Iqbal. Hassan Iqbal of the Punjab civil secretariat meeting was presented online.

At the meeting, Additional Secretary of Interior Salman Ghani informed the meeting about the requests submitted by the organizations on the web portal. The meeting reviewed the registration of the applications submitted for registration. The process of registering the requests collected by the organizations on the Punjab Charity Commission's web portal has been expedited, Salman Ghani said. It was decided in the court that every organization must be registered by August 15.

Registration of non-registered associations will be cancelled on the Punjab County Commission's web portal. The unregistered organization will be prevented from doing all sorts of welfare work. Colonel Prince, Deputy Secretary of Interior Captain (R) Malik Shahbaz Waheed, Deputy Secretary Azam Khan and Manager MIS Imran Khan were also present at the meeting.

The Wall Street Journal Highlights Pakistan's Sharp Decline in              Covid-19 Cases (August 2, 2020)

Lyallpur city: American newspaper TheWall Street Journal on Sunday highlighted the sharp decline in Pakistan's Covid-19 cases and deaths. The number of cases were increasing rapidly in Pakistan until recently, recording a dramatic decline in coronavirus cases and deaths, which are both down more than 80 per cent from their peaks.

The newspaper stated that major hospitals in Pakistan have reported availability of beds in coronavirus wards that were previously overflowing with infected patients. The number of patients on ventilators has halved over the past month compared to Pakistan's neighbouring countries India and Iran that are reporting increasingly high number of daily infections.

Wall Street Journal acknowledged Prime Minister Imran Khan's decision to ignore the World Health Organisation's advice pertaining to lockdowns, stating that lockdowns are too costly for the poor. He later decided to reopen businesses to save the country's economy.

No Covid-19 Death For 11th Consecutive Day in Balochistan                     (August 2, 2020)

QUETTA: According to the daily Situation Report COVID-19 issued by the Operation Cell, Health Department, Government of the Balochistan Province, on August 1, 2020, it is notified that no Covid-19 death reported in Balochistan for 11th day in a row as the downtrend trend of deadly contagion continued in the province. According to health officials, only 19 new cases were reported during the past 24 hours, taking the tally to 11,762. They said that so far 10,136 patients have recovered while 136 have succumbed to the disease in the province.

Punjab Government Lifts lockdown on Sunday                                            (August 2, 2020)

LAHORE: Amid continued fall in Covid-19 cases, Punjab government on Sunday lifted a lockdown which was imposed till August 5 across the province ahead of Eidul Azha in a bid to contain the spread of coronavirus.

In a notification, the provincial health department said all business except those which fall in “negative list” will be allowed to operate from 9am to 7pm from Monday to Friday. The new directives will be effective from 12am (Monday, August 3), it added.

(August 2, 2020)

President Alvi, PM Imran Urge People to Follow Covid-19 Sops on Eidul Azha       (August 1, 2020)

ISLAMABAD: President Arif Alvi and Prime Minister Imran Khan on Saturday urged the nation to strictly observe precautionary measures on the occasion of Eidul Azha in order to mitigate the risk of an increased number of Covid-19 cases Post-Eid. The two also asked the people of the country to take care of the poor and needy segment of the society.

In their separate Eid messages, felicitating the nation, the president and prime minister said it is a day of remembrance of the obedience shown by Hazrat Ibrahim (AS) and the reverence of Hazrat Ismael (AS), who set an exemplary example of sacrifice and selflessness. President Alvi urged people to help the needy as the coronavirus pandemic had negatively affected the economy. Prime Minister Imran, in his message, said the pandemic had become a challenge for humanity and the entire world is faced with a critical situation.

The premier added that the people should strictly adhere to the SOPs in place and the government is utilising all its capabilities to control the epidemic in the country. President Arif Alvi and Prime Minister Imran Khan on Saturday urged the nation to strictly observe precautionary measures on the occasion of Eidul Azha in order to mitigate the risk of an increased number of Covid-19 cases post-Eid. The two also asked the people of the country to take care of the poor and needy segment of the society.

In their separate Eid messages, felicitating the nation, the president and prime minister said it is a day of remembrance of the obedience shown by Hazrat Ibrahim (AS) and the reverence of Hazrat Ismael (AS), who set an exemplary example of sacrifice and selflessness. President Alvi urged people to help the needy as the coronavirus pandemic had negatively affected the economy.Prime Minister Imran, in his message, said the pandemic had become a challenge for humanity and the entire world is faced with a critical situation.

The premier added that the people should strictly adhere to the SOPs in place and the government is utilising all its capabilities to control the epidemic in the country.

Meteorological Office Gauge Precipitation in a Few Zones During Eidul-Azha   (July 31, 2020)

ISLAMABAD: Pakistan Meteorological Department (PMD) in its climate standpoint for Eid-ul-Azha, from Friday to Sunday, anticipated downpour/wind-thundershowers with disconnected substantial falls at a few spots in the nation.

The met office has estimate precipitation in Hazara, Malakand, Peshawar, Mardan, Kohat, Rawalpindi, Gujranwala, Lahore, Sargodha, Faisalabad, Barkhan, Khuzdar, Zhob, Musa Khel, Kashmir and Islamabad from night or night to morning hours in eid days, while muggy and incompletely overcast climate conditions during the day.

Light downpour is likewise expected along Sindh-Makran Coast on Friday and Saturday, as indicated by the climate projection. Sweltering and muggy climate expected in different pieces of the nation. The climate in Karachi will remain halfway overcast on Friday (today) with most extreme temperature between 35 to 37 degree Celsius. Southwestern breezes are blowing with 12 kilo-meters for every hour speed, the met office report said.

Pakistan Announces August 5th, 2020 National Exploitation to Show Solidarity with Kashmiris              (July 31, 2020)

ISLAMABAD: Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi has said that the Day of Exploitation will be celebrated on August 5 to show solidarity with Kashmirs.

"Today, the division of Jammu and Kashmir into three parts is to be divided into three parts," Shah Mahmood Qureshi said during a press conference with Islamabad Information Minister Shabli Faraz and Prime Minister's Advisor on National Security Affairs, Moed Yousuf. There was a conspiracy, India tried to remove the Kashmirs' flag, their identity was removed, Hindu Pundit, Buddhism of Ladakh or Muslim of the Valley did not accept the division, today shining India slag.

Is there a way to get the best out of the "the struggle for right independence involves the Kashmiris, we stand with the Kashmiris in this struggle," the foreign minister said. Until the last victory, the Pakistan will stand with the Kashmiris. Neither the Kashmiris will bend, nor will the forces of Pakistan retreat, speak blood and speak, showing on the LOC what India is doing.

"Life saving activities in occupied Kashmir are suspended, the internet in occupied Kashmir needs to be opened, lockdown in occupied Kashmir is going to be a year," Said Shah Mahmood Qureshi, "The World feels the Kashmiris’ unhappiness." After the world knows what is lockdown? We want to see the practical work of the world in support of Indian-occupied Kashmir.

"Pakistan highlighted the problem on the Prime Minister's instructions, tomorrow we are not, but Pakistan's foreign minister's position is becoming part of history, Kashmir issue raised 3 times in a year in security council, human rights council, highlights Kashmir problem in Geneva," Shah Mahmood Qureshi said.

"We have to send a message to Kashmiris together on 5th August 2020 that we are united on Kashmir issue despite political fictionality, we are on Srinagar- Kashmir Highway on the 5th of August, 2020" the foreign minister said, announcing the August 5th exploitation of Kashmiris rights. The Srinagar-Kashmir Highway will take us to Kashmir.

NRO Cannot Be Given to Opposition in the Interest of Country, PM Says (July 31, 2020)

ISLAMABAD: Prime Minister Imran Khan has said he cannot give the NROs to the opposition in exchange for legislation of national interest. The parliamentary party under Prime Minister Imran Khan was talking in a meeting, in which the Prime Minister informed the members of the government about the importance of legislation in Parliament.

Addressing a parliamentary party meeting, Prime Minister Imran Khan said that legislation related to the FATF is essential for Pakistan, correcting past flaws. Imran Khan said the opposition tried to disrupt every legislation from the beginning, using the forum of parliament to save its politics, even though it should support legislation in the national interest.

The Prime Minister warned that if the opposition did not give priority to the national interest, the NRO will would be exposed, not to give the NRO in exchange for legislation in the national interest, you are representatives of the people, play an active role in the legislation in Parliament.

"The whole opposition struggle is to get the cases over, but we will not come to any blackmail of the opposition and the PTI will not be able to get back from our manifesto, because if we withdraw from our manifesto, there will be destruction," Imran Khan said.

The Number of Active Patients in the Country has Gone Up to 25,000     (July 31, 2020)

ISLAMABAD: The country has seen a further decline in the number of cases of the corona virus, with 25,177 cases of the virus being reported in Pakistan. According to the National Command and Operations Centre, 20,507 corona tests were conducted across the country during the last 24 hours, with 19,73,237 tests conducted across the country so far.

In the last 24 hours, only 903 new case reported across the country, thus reaching 2,78,305 total number of the total number of patients with the corona virus nationwide, while the number of patients who have been diagnosed with the virus has gone up to 2,47,177 and the number of active cases is 25,177.

The number of patients in corona in Sindh is 1,20,550, in Punjab 90,873, in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa 33,958, in Balochistan 11,732, in Islamabad 15,14, in Azad Jammu and Kashmir 2,73 and in Gilgit Baltistan 2,105. In the past 24 hours, 27 people have died of the disease, thus increasing the total number of deaths across the country to 5951, while 210 patients are on the ventilator in hospitals across the country.

Taking this precautionary measure against the corona virus can make it easier to win the war against the virus. Some morning should be spent in the sun, not to sit down, but to open the door windows and let the light sunlight come into the rooms. Instead of running the AC in the closed rooms, sit in the fan's air.

UV-containing sun-strains affect the proteins that are emerging on the external structure of the virus and weaken the virus. The high temperature or heat does not affect the virus, but the high level of UV-containing virus weakens. Heat the water and put it in the thermos and add half a cup of semi-heated water every 1 hour. The virus first infects the throat and reaches the lungs, using hot water, the virus goes from the throat to the throat, where the virus is infected.

SBP Reserves Fall $146m to $11.98b (July 31, 2020)  

KARACHI: The foreign exchange reserves held by the central bank decreased 1.2% on a weekly basis, according to data released by the State Bank of Pakistan (SBP) on Thursday.

On July 24, the foreign currency reserves held by the SBP were recorded at $11,975.6 million, down $146 million compared with $12,121.6 million in the previous week. According to the central bank, the reserves decreased due to external debt repayments. Overall, liquid foreign currency reserves held by the country, including net reserves held by banks other than the SBP, stood at $18,912.2 million. Net reserves held by banks amounted to $6,936.6 million.

Pakistan received the first loan tranche of $991.4 million from the International Monetary Fund (IMF) on July 9 last year, which helped bolster the reserves. In late December, the IMF released the second loan tranche of around $454 million. Previously, the reserves jumped on account of $2.5 billion in inflows from China. A few months ago, the SBP successfully made foreign debt repayment of over $1 billion on the maturity of Sukuk.

In December 2019, the foreign exchange reserves surpassed the $10-billion mark owing to inflows from multilateral lenders including $1.3 billion from the Asian Development Bank.

IHC Sets 3rd August for Hearing Govt’s Plea on Jadhav                   (July 30, 2020)

ISLAMABAD: The Islamabad High Court (IHC) on Thursday fixed the hearing of a government plea seeking the appointment of a legal representative for Indian spy Kulbhushan Jadhav on August 3, 2020.

A division bench of the IHC comprising Chief Justice Athar Minallah and Justice Miangul Hassan Aurangzeb will conduct hearing on the petition. The plea, which had been filed under the Presidential Ordinance and nominated federation as respondent through defence secretary and judge advocate general branch of general headquarters, adopted the stance that Jadhav had refused to file a petition against his sentence.

It said that the Indian spy cannot appoint a legal representative in Pakistan without the assistance of India, while New Delhi was also reluctant to avail the facility under the ordinance. The application requested the court to appoint a legal representative for Jadhav so that Pakistan could fulfill its responsibility according to the International Court of Justice (ICsJ’) orders. On July 17,2020 Pakistan had offered Jadhav consular access for a third time, after the second opportunity was not fully availed.

The move was made in the light of the ICJ's July 17, 2019 decision, following which the ICJ (Review and Reconsideration) Ordinance, 2020 was enacted to implement the court's verdict. Commander Jadhav, Indian Navy officer working for Indian covert agency Research and Analysis Wing (RAW), was arrested on March 3, 2016, from Balochistan. He made important revelations about RAW's role in sponsoring state terrorism in Pakistan. Jadhav’s death sentence was announced on April 10, 2017.

Senate Clears Changes to ATA, UNSC Laws: Babar Awan              (July 30, 2020)

ISLAMABAD: Two bills, which are crucial for the country’s removal from global watchdog Financial Action Task Force’s (FATF) grey list, were approved with a majority vote by Senate on Thursday and later passed by the National Assembly in a matter of minutes amid the opposition’s protest with the amendments incorporated by the upper house.

Adviser to the PM on Parliamentary Affairs Babar Awan placed the Anti-Terrorism (Amendment) Bill, 2020 and the United Nations Security Council (Amendment) Bill, 2020 before the upper house, a day after they were cleared by the National Assembly. After the Senate passed them, they bills containing the changes made by the upper house were sent back to the National Assembly for their clause-wise approval.

As the legislation was presented during the Senate session chaired by the house’s chairman Sadiq Sanjrani, the lawmakers belonging to the Jamiat Ulema-e-Islam-Fazl (JUI-F) expressed their reservations over not being allowed to speak on the matter. The two bills were later passed with a majority vote. Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi said by passing the two bills, the Senate had proved that it was a mature forum that could set aside political differences for the sake of national interest.

“The Senate has defeated India's ambitions of having Pakistan blacklisted by the FATF,” he added. “It has played its role in the efforts to have Pakistan removed from the FATF’s grey list.” Earlier, the Senate’s Standing Committee on Law and Justice, chaired by Javed Abbasi, unanimously approved both the bills with the proposed amendments. During the committee’s meeting, the foreign office’s special secretary said the directives of the FATF were being implemented through the bills.

The amended bills were later referred back to the National Assembly for their clause-wise approval. Awan presented the bill during the session of the lower house with Speaker Asad Qaiser in the chair. They were approved in around 11 minutes with a voice vote amid a vociferous protest by the opposition lawmakers. The session of the lower house was then adjourned till for August 7.

Both the bills aim at fulfilling various requirements of the FATF – an inter-governmental organisation that sets global policies against money laundering and terror financing. Pakistan, which was placed on the FATF grey list in June 2019, is supposed to fulfill the body’s 27-point action plan in order to come out of its grey list and to avoid its blacklist of non-compliant countries.

The amendment in section 11O in the Anti-Terrorism Act, 1997 states that “(2) any natural person not connected with a legal person or body corporate, who violates any provision of sub-section (1) shall be liable, on conviction to a term not exceeding ten years or with fine not exceeding twenty-five million rupees or with both.” The measures also include freezing and seizure of assets, travel ban, and arms embargo on the entities and individuals, who are designated on the sanctions list of the United Nations.

The bill seeking to amend the United Nations (Security Council) Act, 1948, in order to ensure the effective implementation of the resolution of the UNSC, has included news sections pertaining to indemnity, power to make rules and delegation of powers. The new section on indemnity stated: “No suit, prosecution or other legal proceedings shall lie against any person in respect of anything which is in good faith done or intended to be done under this Act.”

Under the bill, the federal government has the power to make rules for carrying out the purposes of the Act and the “Federal Government may, by order, delegate to a Pakistani person, entity or authority, subject to such condition as may be specified therein, all or any of the powers exercisable by it under this Act.”

The 1948 Act did not contain any indemnity clause to provide protection to the persons implementing in good faith. Besides, the provision for the punishment of the offenders was redundant as neither the punishment nor the mechanism for its enforcement was provided under the Act.

With the insertion of section 1100 (violation of UN Security Council Resolution) in the ATA, “a person is guilty of an offence if he, an any way whatsoever, refuses or fails to comply with the orders of the Federal Government under section 2 of the United Nations (Security Council) Act, 1948”. It reiterates that “a person guilty of an offence under sub-section (1), shall be liable to conviction to imprisonment for a term not exceeding ten years or with fine not exceeding twenty-five million rupees or with both.”

Two Protesters Killed Over ‘Sudden Closure’ of Pak-Afghan Border     (July 31, 2020)

QUETTA: At least two people died, including a woman, while protesting against the sudden closure of Pakistan-Afghanistan bordering area Chaman.

Last week, authorities had temporarily opened the border till Eidul Azha for transit trade and allowed the cross-border movement of the people.Hundreds protesting against the officials entered into quarantine Centre established for the Covid-19 patients and torched it.

According to officials, 20 people who sustained injuries have been rushed to the nearby hospital.Home Minister Ziaullah Langove will address a press conference tonight to brief on the incident.

Pakistan's Corona Patient Numbers Reduced to 31405 (July 29, 2020)

ISLAMABAD: According to official data in Pakistan, new cases and deaths in corona have been declining for the past several days, and the number of active patients in the country has dropped to just 31,405.

According to the National Command and Operations Center, there were 21,256 tests conducted in the Country in the past one day. In Sindh 9,571, Punjab 7,38, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa 1,840, Balochistan 1,302, Gilgit Baltistan 106 and Pakistan-controlled Kashmir 268 corona virus tests were conducted. In 24 hours, 1063 new case of corona were reported across the country, while the number of confirmed cases of corona in Pakistan has gone up to 2,76,288, of which 2,44,883 have been health-related, thus the number of active patients of corona is 31,405. 1,179 patients are in critical condition, 227 of whom are on a ventilator.

In Sindh, where the most tests have been done so far, the number of patients is also the highest at 1,19,398, in Punjab 92,452,   Khyber Pakhtunkhwa. There are 33,724 reports of 11,654 in Balochistan, 14,963 in Islamabad, 2,55 in Azad Kashmir and 2,42 in Gilgit Baltistan in corona. According to the National Command and Operations Center, 27 more people were killed in the Country of corona, 10 patients in Sindh, 8 in Punjab, 6 in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, 2 in Gilgit Baltistan and one in Independent Kashmir lost life.

The total number of deaths in the country has gone up to 5892, so far 2,172 in Sindh, 2,133 in Punjab, 1,186 in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, 186165 in Islamabad, 136 in Balochistan, 50 in Gilgit Baltistan and 50 in Azad Jammu & Kashmir.

The Corona Virus and Precautionary Measures:

Taking this precautionary measure against the corona virus can make it easier to win the war against the virus. Some morning should be spent in the sun, not to sit down, but to open the door windows and let the light sunlight come into the rooms. Instead of running the AC in the closed rooms, sit in the fan's air. UV-containing sun-strains affect the proteins that are emerging on the external structure of the virus and weaken the virus. The high temperature or heat does not affect the virus, but the high level of UV-containing virus weakens.

Heat the water and put it in the thermos and add half a cup of semi-heated water every 1 hour. The virus first infects the throat and reaches the lungs, using hot water, the virus goes from the throat to the throat, where the virus is infected.

NAB Has No Ability or Experience in Investigation: Supreme Court of Pakistan    (July 29, 2020)

ISLAMABAD: The Supreme Court has said in its written order that the delay in the referral decisionism is the reason for the National Accountability Bureau (NAB) has no capacity or experience of investigation.

The Supreme Court has issued a delay in the case, the order said, "the reason for the delay in the decisions of the NAB reference is the inefficiency itself, the NAB has no capacity, no investigation experience and no experience." The ruling says that the investigation based on errors is converted into a reference, Chairman NAB needs to review the reference itself, ensure the decision on the reference in 30 days, the delay in decisions is due to the NAB, the official and the prosecution team, the Chairman

The court has ordered that NAB set his roles and present it at a future hearing, Chairman NAB will respond in writing to the next hearing. The new 120 Courts will be in a position to decide on the new referral, says The Secretary of State, taking approval from the cabinet of 120  new courts.

Double Citizenship Issue: Prime Minister's Assistant Special Special Tanya Edros and Zafar Mirza Resign (July 29, 2020)

ISLAMABAD: The Prime Minister's assistant special special counsel Tanya Edros and Dr. Zafar Mirza resigned over the double citizenship issue.

"My double citizenship has been criticized for the state, which is causing digital Pakistan to be a target," Tanya Edros, assistant special for Digital Pakistan, tweeted on the social media website. "In the broad interest of the people, i have decided to resign as assistant special prime minister and submit my resignation, but I will continue to serve the country and the will of Prime Minister Imran Khan according to his ability," Tanya Edros said.

On the other hand, the Prime Minister's assistant special special doctor Zafar Mirza, who tweeted on the social media website, said that pakistanis deserve better health care because of criticism of the government on double citizenship. "I came to Pakistan on the personal invitation of Prime Minister Imran Khan and I worked with integrity and hard work, satisfied that the national efforts are breaking the door in Pakistan," Zafar Mirza said.

PM Instructs Pakistan aRMY to Help Clean Up Karachi (July 27, 2020)

ISLAMABAD: Prime Minister Imran Khan has directed the National Disaster Management Authority (NDMA) to clean up Karachi and help the Pakistani army to clean up the country and said that the people of Karachi will not be left alone in difficult situations. Prime Minister Imran Khan has directed the NDMA to submit a detailed review report on the situation in Karachi, saying the federal government will not leave the people of Karachi alone in this difficult situation, the people of Karachi are facing difficulties, he added.

In a tweet, the Prime Minister said that the Chairman has instructed the NDMA to immediately reach Karachi to begin the cleanup process in Karachi, while asking the Pak army to help clean up Karachi. Earlier, Governor Sindh Imran Ismail met Prime Minister Imran Khan in Islamabad. Governor Sindh informed the Prime Minister of the situation and details caused by the recent rains in Karachi.

Russian Army Gives Money to Afghan Fighters to Attack US Forces

LYALLPUR CITY: (Layalpur Post): Russian army gave money to Afghan fighters to attack American forces. Russian military's intelligence unit had given rewards to Afghan fighters for their attacks on American and allied forces.

The American newspaper New York Times reported that the prize money was offered last year by Us intelligence sources. The White House declined to comment, while President Trump was informed. (Sunday, 26 Jul 2020) 

PM Imran Concerned over Hurdles in Hiring

ISLAMABAD: Prime Minister Imran Khan has expressed serious concerns over the designed advertisements drafted to favour some candidates in appointing heads of public sector entities, a move which is causing major hurdle in appointment of professionals at key posts.

Sources told that the premier had drawn attention of the cabinet to the difficulty being faced in attracting the right talent to fill top positions in public Sector enterprises in a recent high level meeting. (Sunday, 26 Jul 2020)

Special Preparations Made to Ensure Implementation of Sops During Eid

ISLAMABAD: Special Assistant to the Prime Minister on Health Dr Zafar Mirza reiterated on Sunday that the sale of sacrificial animals and establishment of cattle markets within cities had been strictly banned across the country.

Addressing a news conference in Islamabad, the SAPM observed that special preparations had been made in consultation with all stakeholders for implementation of standard operating procedures (SOPs) during Eid days.

Mirza warned that the pandemic would further spread if citizens did not follow SOPs, stressing that they must also be ensured while offering Eid prayers. He advised citizens to prefer purchasing sacrificial animals online instead of going to cattle markets. (Sunday, 26 Jul 2020) 

2018 Polls Discredited State Institutions: Bilawal

ISLAMABAD: On the second anniversary of July 25, 2018 general election, PPP Chairman Bilawal Bhutto Zardari has reiterated that the polls which paved the way for the PTI to form the federal government were highly rigged and that they discredited the state institutions which oversaw the polling process.

“The 2018 polls were the most controversial in the country’s history. The nation will mark this day as a ‘black day’. If there were no coronavirus pandemic, all the political parties would be protesting on roads on this day,” Bilawal said while addressing a press conference in Islamabad on Saturday. (Sunday, 26 Jul 2020) 

Outdated System of Pakistan Defeated in 2018 Election: Shibli

ISLAMABAD: Information Minister Senator Shibli Faraz on Saturday said July 25, 2018 was a historic day in the country’s democratic history as on that day the people of Pakistan, including the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) workers, joined hands to lay the foundation of a new thought process.

The minister spoke to the media on the completion of two years since the general elections of 2018, which resulted in the PTI’s victory. On this day in general election, the minister said, an outdated, privileged and corrupt system based on nepotism and favouritism was defeated. (Sunday, 26 Jul 2020) 

How Was Fazl’s Brother Posted as a DC in Sindh

PESHAWAR: The appointment of Jamiat Ulema-e-Islam-Fazl chief Maulana Fazlur Rehman's brother as a deputy commissioner (DC) in Karachi has drawn the ire of different political parties and civil society members, who have termed the move against the law.

Fazl's brother, Ziaur Rehman, a grade-19 provincial management service officer of Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa (K-P) presently working for the Sindh government, has been appointed as the DC of Karachi's Central district.

According to a services, general administration and coordination department (SGA&CD) official, who requested anonymity, the notification for Zia's posting was issued by his department on July 23. (Sunday, 26 Jul 2020) 

ISLAMABAD (Layalpur Post): Prime Minister of Pakistan Imran Khan has said that he wants the nation to celebrate Eid-al-Fitr this time by re-entering the tradition.

Tweeting a special message on the occasion of Eid al-Fitr in the country, he said, "I want the nation to celebrate Eid-al-Fitr this time by with passing tradition. " First, we pray for the families whose loved ones were left in the plane tragedy or separated by the COVID- 19.  

"Each of us has a special provision for the people, i.e. we have a special arrangement for social distances throughout the holiday including the prayment of the Eid of the prayer," the Prime Minister said. May Allah be the holy God of Mercy, and give us a shadow.

On the other hand, the ministers of Punjab, Sindh, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, Balochistan and Gilgit Baltistan, and Prime Minister Azad Kashmir have also appealed to the nation to celebrate Eid with simplicity, in view of the loss of life in the Plane crash in Karachi and Corona-19 virus pandemic in Pakistan.

NEW YORK: (Layalpur Post)- The American pharmaceutical company has claimed that the Corona vaccine will be ready by the end of October this year, while experts say that the vaccine is not ready until the end of 2021.

Albert Borla, CEO of American Pharmaceutical Company Pfizer, has said that if the situation remains good and the vaccine is proved, the vaccine will be able to be brought in by the end of October. Pfizer is researching the production of vaccines in Europe and the United States, in partnership with a German company.

A research company with Oxford university has also expressed hope of developing the vaccine by the end of the year. The news agency reports that after the vaccine is made, it will also be challenging to produce a large number of doses.

More than 100 laboratories around the world are working on developing the Corona vaccine, of which ten have reached the clinical trial stage so far. Experts say it will not be possible to make the vaccine for the Corona virus until the end of next year.

NEWYORK: Google announced an additional $1,000 to its employees working from home. The company's employees who work from home will be given a currency of $1,000 or equivalent to an additional allowance, a google statement said.

The company said that home-grown employees would have needed furniture and other equipment, and most of the employees would have to work from home this year. This is why they are being given extra allowance stake to take what they need.

The Corona virus has caused offices all over the world to be operated from home. Google also allowed its employees to work from home in March, 2020. Google has announced that it will call its employees from July 6, 2020 to start working in its offices with 10% of its employees in isolated cities, and 30 percent of employees will be called to the offices by September, 2020 if the case is correct.

Pakistanis crowd markets as provinces ease coronavirus lockdown

UNICEF estimates five million babies will be born in Pakistan in nine months since COIVD-19 outbreak Pakistan's Confirm Covid-19 Cases Upto 14,788 Coronavirus: Sindh bans all religious gatherings in Ramadan Federal cabinet gives nod to three more weeks for submission of sugar crisis report Mosques on verge of becoming COVID-19 hotspots: PIMA Sindh govt forgot duties under 18th Amendment, PTI 18TH Amendments passed on basis of majority, Chaudhry Shujaat COVID-19 statistics of Karachi call for precautionary measures: Murad Ali Shah

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LAHORE (Layalpur Post): Pakistan Muslim League (N) President Quaid Shahbaz Sharif congratulates the nation on Eidalfitr. Eid al-Fitr is the holy month of Ramadan by Allah.

This is a day of special mercy and forgiveness from Allah. I congratulate all Muslim brothers and sisters in Islam, Pakistan, Gilgit Baltistan and Azad Jammu and Kashmir.

The holy month of Ramadan is a great thank you. Unfortunately, this year we are seeing halal Eid in a miserable environment.

On one hand, the stories of Pakistani brothers, sisters and innocent children who were killed in the plane crash are precious lives that are being sacrificed by the COVID-19 virus. Millions of people are in trouble because of this crisis.

The plane crash and the deaths from COVID-19 have made Eidalfitr a tragedy, we share the grief of the affected families.

In solidarity with the people of occupied areas, Kashmir and Palestine, Allah will soon bless our brothers and sisters with the blessing of freedom.

In occupied Jammu and Kashmir, millions of our brothers and sisters are celebrating Eid in a double lock-down environment.

May Allah make their difficulties easier. May Allah bless this Eid for Pakistan and all the worlds of Islam and protect all the Islam and Pakistanis. Ameen.

I offer my sincere greetings to you and your family with prayer. Do not let the preventive medical practice of celebrating Eid.

Allah is your supporter and protector. Ameen

LAHORE (Layalpur Post): The President of the Muslim League (N) Shahbaz Sharif has said that the current government chief is a victim of the confusion, he could not bring the nation together on the issue of corona.

In a speech at the Muslim League (N) function in Lahore on the Day of Takbir, party president Shahbaz Sharif said that on May 28, Nawaz Sharif rejected external pressure and made the country's defense untenable, it was time to unite rather than be a part of the country.

Former Prime Ministers Shahid Khaqan Abbasi, Ahsan Iqbal, Maryam Aurangzeb, Saad Rafiq, Pervez Rashid and Rana Sana Ullah said that Nawaz Sharif’s leadership could bring the country out of the crisis.

"Chairman conveys to NAB that our courage is as powerful as an atom bomb," he said. The country needs free and fair elections, the vote has to be respected to avoid internal aggression. During the ceremony, the workers chanted slogans in favor of Nawaz Sharif.

KARACHI (Layalpur Post): A vaccine designed to treat the COVID-19 virus in China has started producing encouraging results and the results of experiments on 100 people have been positive. During the initial trial, 100؍ patients showed good immune response to the virus, Science magazine reported.  The vaccine, called Ad5-nCoV, is being developed by canSino Biologics, a Chinese company, and its experiments on humans were started in March.

Now, there are 100 vaccines؍ for the treatment of the disease of the COVID-19 around the world and 8؍ are being tested on humans. The Ad5-nCoV vaccine includes a weak version of the common virus called Adenovirus, which affects human cells but does not cause any disease.

The virus's task is to provide a genetic material for the crown of the COVID-19 virus. The idea in the preparation of this vaccine was that the human force would be able to produce antibodies against the crown of the immune system on the Corona virus, which would enable the body to fight the corona.

Two weeks later, the preparation of the antibodies that were considered necessary to fight the corona began in all the individuals, while by the 28th day, almost all people had anti-corona antibodies. Side-infections include pain, mild fever, fatigue, headache and body pain, experts say.

LAHORE (Layalpur Post) Pakistan Muslim League (N) Punjab, President, Rana Sanaullah has said that the current rulers are afraid of Nawaz Sharif, the “day of takbir” is linked to Nawaz Sharif.

These thoughts were expressed by the media after the cake cutting ceremony for the “day of the Takbir” with The League of Victoria at Lahore High Court Bar.

"The rulers are afraid of Mian Nawaz Sharif, the “Day of Takbir (TD)” is a day of celebration, no one can look at Pakistan with an unfair eye, Pakistan has become a nuclear country," he said. Allah protects Pakistan.

"The government has nothing to do with relief to the people," he said. The government has failed in the case of Td. The government has been unable to provide a policy for the past six months to make a statement about the issue of COVID-19.

ISLAMABAD (Layalpur Post): The number of cases of the corona virus increased to 63000,16, while the total number of deaths rose to 1,283.

According to data released by the National Command and Operations Center, there were 2,76 more reported case of the Koruna virus across the country in the past 24 hours, which has increased to 62,689.

In Punjab, 22,37 in Koruna, 25,309 in Sindh, 8,842 in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, 3,928 in Balochistan, 2,15 in Islamabad, 2,15 in Gilgit Baltistan 662 and 223 in Independent Kashmir have been reported, 20,231 patients of The Koruna virus have been reported in the country.

The highest deaths due to the Koruna virus were in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, where 425 people died from the Koruna virus in Sindh, 380 in Punjab, 19 in Islamabad, 9 in Gilgit Baltistan, 41 in Balochistan and 5 in independent Kashmir.

Taking this precautionary measure against the Coruna virus can make it easier to win the war against the virus. Some morning should be spent in the sun, not to sit down, but to open the door windows and let the light sunlight come into the rooms. Instead of running the AC in the closed rooms, sit in the fan's air.

UV-containing sun-strains affect the proteins that are emerging on the external structure of the virus and weaken the virus. The high temperature or heat does not affect the virus, but the high level of UV-containing virus weakens.

Heat the water and put it in the thermos and add half a cup of semi-heated water every 1 hour. The virus first infects the throat and reaches the lungs, using hot water, the virus goes from the throat to the throat, where the virus is infected.

ISLAMABAD (Layalpur Post): President Arif Alvi and Prime Minister Imran Khan have called for the nation to take precautionary measures to address the threat of the virus in the world.

President Dr. Arif Alvi and Prime Minister Imran Khan have called on the nation to take precautionary measures

to ensure that the world is facing the threat of the threat of the virus. "The whole nation can deal with the situation arising from the corona virus by implementing solidarity and precautionary measures," President Dr. Arif Alvi said in his message.

"I am a member of the Indian community of Muslims, Palestinians and Muslims who are suffering from Islamophobia in India, all the poor, doctors, nurses, patients of The corona, who are suffering from Islamophobia in India," the president said in his message.

I request all Pakistanis, but all human beings, to follow the social distances, wear masks, wash their hands to protect themselves and their loved ones and friends from the corona.

Inshaallah Pakistan will come out of this difficulty. On this blessed and blessed occasion, we must not silence the needy and deserving of society and make them enjoy the celebrations of Eid. The President also prayed for the successful control of the coronavirus through national solidarity and cooperation.

"By adding the poor and poor sections of society to the celebrations of Eid, we can celebrate the true celebration of this religious festival," Prime Minister Imran Khan said in his message. The Prime Minister also stressed on the need for preventive measures on the corona virus and strict implementation of the government-imposed regulation, as this strategy can save the lives of people and their loved ones.

"We must adopt these qualities in our lives, in the manner we have demonstrated in harmony, control and well-being during The Ramadan," the Prime Minister said. "The entire global community is facing the challenge of the coronavirus and all countries are trying to overcome its spread," he said.

The Prime Minister made it clear that social distance restrictions and precautionary measures are the only way to prevent this. Prime Minister Imran Khan has said in his message that he wants the nation to celebrate Eid al-Fitr this time by rebutting the tradition. And pray for the calf because of the accident and the corona. 

MUZAFFARABAD (Layalpur Post): The President of the Independent Jammu and Kashmir, Sardar Masood Khan, has said that Indian rulers are responsible for the tension in the region.

During interviews with various private channels and media, he said that Indian rulers are accustomed to suppressing the weak and kneeling in front of the powerful.

"Over the past 72 years, the international community's attention to the killing of the non attendant and peaceful Kashmirs people and threats to impose Pakistan-free Kashmir and the Gilgit Baltistan has led to the courage of the Indian gentile leaders to challenge China and Nepal," Masood Khan said.

He hoped that the tension would help the world to realize the importance of a peaceful and diplomatic solution to the conflict, including Kashmir.

LAHORE: (Layalpur Post): Pakistan Muslim League (N) President Shahbaz Sharif has demanded the resignation of Prime Minister Imran Khan and Punjab Chief Minister.

"The Prime Minister is responsible for every decision as the head of the Economic Relations Committee and the Cabinet and the sacrifice of others will not be lost on Imran Khan," Shahbaz Sharif said in his statement.

Imran Khan gave the license to return to the country, signed it, Imran Khan has allowed him to return to the national treasury which has returned.

"A Sugar Theft group named after Prime Minister Imran Khan has been allowed to export sugar at low rates and import the same at higher prices. The expensive sales of sugar are crimes in the local market," Shahbaz Sharif said.

Prime Minister Imran Khan and Usman Buzdar, CM Punjab province must resigned from their posts and let the inquiry commission workout the inquiry in depth so that the nation can know the truth of sugar scandal.

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