Sunday, July 12, 2015

Music Video - Jennifer Lopez - Booty ft. Iggy Azalea

Music Video - Nicki Minaj - Feeling Myself

Video - What Does Hillary Think of the Other Candidates?

Interview - Hillary Clinton: Jul 7, 2015

Hillary Clinton's speech will put focus on economics

In a speech intended to outline the economic vision she will present throughout her presidential campaign, Hillary Rodham Clinton on Monday will call for an aggressive rethinking of domestic policy with the single purpose of lifting middle-class incomes that have stagnated for years despite the growth of the economy.
Ms. Clinton will present a stark assessment of a middle class whose weekly earnings have virtually stalled for 15 years, and she will criticize “trickle down” Republican policies as having contributed to a vast concentration of wealth among the richest Americans, according to campaign aides. They offered a preview of the speech, to be delivered at the New School in New York, on the condition of anonymity.
The emphasis on what economists have called “the great wage slowdown” of the 21st century is the result of Ms. Clinton’s months of conversations with more than 200 domestic policy experts and dozens of economists.

Music Video - Asalaam-e-Ishqum - Gunday

India - Why poverty is development’s best friend

The ‘development’ discourse serves the same purpose as the colonial apparatus but without the bad press. After 67 years of failing to eliminate deprivation in India, is it time to look for new ideas?

The Socio-Economic and Caste Census (SECC) 2011, which hit the headlines earlier this month, tells us that half the households in rural India are landless, dependant on casual manual labour, and live in deprivation. By suggesting that poverty in India is worse than previously estimated, it has again triggered the old debate about the right way to count the poor.
But disagreements on methodology apart, most commentators agree that the SECC numbers on rural poverty merit serious consideration. They are expected to guide evidence-based policy-making. But how exactly does that work?
For instance, now that we have data which show that there are more poor people in India than previously thought, living in greater deprivation that previously thought, is India’s economic policy or development model likely to change in the light of this fresh evidence? Will the finance minister reverse the cuts on welfare spending announced in the 2015 budget? Now that we know landlessness is widespread, will the government reverse its stand on dispossessing more farmers of their land through its land bill amendments?
Or will it be business as usual? Finance Minister Arun Jaitley’s reaction to the SECC numbers offer an unambiguous answer: “The way to eliminate deprivation is to achieve rapid economic growth of 8 percent to 10 percent.”
Mr. Jaitley’s words reflect the prevailing wisdom on the best way to battle poverty. Sample these editorials from the business press on the SECC data: “India needs to grow fast…move ever more people from agriculture to industry” says one. Another asserts that “this database provides the strongest foundations…to comprehend the nature of deprivation in different parts of the country. This is the starting point for an understanding of its causes”.
Really? Did we have to wait 67 years, and for this particular set of SECC data, to understand the causes of deprivation in India? Or is it possible that the question is not about understanding causes at all? That what really concerns policy-makers here is not the problem (poverty) but the solution (growth/development)?
The poverty-development tango

Human beings at different points in time have had diverse cultural conceptions of poverty. Not all of them have been negative. Indeed, at a time when India is witnessing a sort of post-modern, pseudo-Vedic revival, it might be pertinent to point out that the sub-continent is home to a long and ancient tradition of frugality, moderation, and voluntary poverty that even carried quite a bit of spiritual capital. So are other non-Western cultures.
The problematisation of poverty is a recent phenomenon, one that went hand in hand with the rise of the economy as an autonomous domain, independent of the human totality of culture, politics and society. It was only in the post-World War-II period that poverty was made visible – by the discourse of development -- as a global problem.
As has been pointed out by several critics of developmentalism, three historical factors were crucial in the rise of the ‘development apparatus’. One, the decline of colonialism, which signified the end of direct political control over Third World populations and geographies; two, the epicentre of world capitalism shifted from the UK to the US; and three, the rise of communism in the form of the Soviet bloc.
Together, these factors posed a series of challenges to Western capital: securing new sources of raw materials for industry, securing new sites for investment of surplus capital, securing new markets for goods and commodities, and geo-politically securing the capitalist universe from the communist threat.
The answer to all these challenges was what is known as the Truman Doctrine. It was America’s initiative, as the global steward of capitalism, to ‘develop’ the ‘underdeveloped’ areas of the world through capitalism, science and technology.
In practice, this doctrine translated into a dual strategy – one for its European allies, another for its non-European ones. The US donated free capital to the former, so that the core nations of global capitalism – the UK, France, West Germany – could rebuild their war-wrecked economies quickly. This was the Marshall Plan, a $120 billion (in current dollar value) handout that defied every law of neoclassical economics.
For the latter (the erstwhile colonies), it shepherded into existence the Bretton Woods institutions, the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and the World Bank, whose job it became to expand and consolidate capitalism in the furthest reaches of the Third World.
But why would newly independent nations want to take economic advice from their former oppressors? This is where the discourse of poverty and development had a role. In place of the dismantled apparatus of colonialism, the Truman Doctrine ushered in the development apparatus, whose main component was the Bretton Woods institutions, which had close links with Western capital as well as with the governing elites of every nation-state. With its trans-national army of development experts, this apparatus served the same purpose as the colonial apparatus but without the bad press – preserving the economic dominance of the First World over the Third World.
This dominance was secured through programs of financial assistance that went hand in hand with the creation of knowledge about the nations designated as ‘underdeveloped’. An offshoot of this knowledge management project – conducted through a panoply of surveys, studies and theoretical models – was the discipline of development economics.
Theorists of development such as Arturo Escobar, Wolfgang Sachs and Majid Rahnema have written about how the discourse of development economics functioned as a ‘regime of representation’ that not only objectified human lives – reducing human experience to a single metric, say, land ownership, or calories consumed – but also reconfigured two-thirds of the world’s population as stricken by the pathologies of ‘poverty’. The treatment, to be administered by the IMF and the World Bank, was ‘development’.
Rather than curing the disease, what the treatment did was to destroy the immune system further. As Escobar observed in his classic, Encountering Development, “instead of the kingdom of abundance promised by theorists and politicians in the 1950s, the discourse and strategy of development produced its opposite: massive underdevelopment and impoverishment, untold exploitation and oppression… increasing poverty, malnutrition, and violence are only the most pathetic signs of the failure of forty years of development.”
It is a testament to the sophisticated lure of the development discourse that even today, after six decades of repeated failures, its hold over the social imagination remains as powerful as ever. Poverty and development continue to be inseparable buddies tangoing around the world merrily in the service of capital.
Repeating history
And here we are in India today, gloriously reprising recent history – already played out multiple times in the ‘60s, ‘70s, ‘80s, and ‘90s across Africa and Latin America -- with yet another government leading a billion souls down the garden path of ‘sabka vikas’.
Coming back to evidence-based policy-making, the SECC data is ample evidence, if any was needed, that 67 years of ‘development’ have failed to eliminate deprivation in India. Yet the critical interrogation occasioned by this evidence is never extendable to the doxa that the poor are people lacking in essential economic goods which can only be accessed by them when they embrace the market, increase their productivity, and improve their incomes.
On the one hand, industry-led growth – with its concomitants of displacement, dispossession, and proletarianisation of the peasantry – severs people from access to land, water, and other communal resources, creating a constellation of deprivations. On the other, these very deprivations serve as the reason for a tighter embrace of the market economy, a policy aggressively pushed by the Bretton Woods institutions in the name of development.
For instance, there is no axiomatic or natural reason why poverty needs to be defined by measures of income or consumption. It could also be defined in terms of a people’s political agency – how much control they exercise over the factors that determine their life chances, which may or may not be linked to a money economy. But defining poverty in terms of income limits possible solutions to those that can raise income – development via economic growth. This was the logic behind the statements made by the finance minister and the editorials cited above.
Economic thinking has saturated our common sense to such an extent that it has become almost impossible for us to imagine that there might be an alternative vision of social change that has nothing to do with development or an economistic agenda of progress.
How did societies change before colonialism? Before the era of development? What if, say, a people’s culture dictates that they produce only for need and not for accumulation? Does the developmental paradigm allow space for such a cultural choice?
Developmental discourses, both the Keynesian-inspired one mandating state intervention, as well as the currently dominant neo-liberal school advocating market solutions, are united by a common vision of the poor as entities in need of assistance -- be it welfare or ‘skilling’ or jobs. What if it’s not the poor but the missionaries of growth and the archangels of development who need help?

Video Report - CR-ISIS OF STATE? Ft. Mohammad Ashraf Ghani, President of Afghanistan

Hamid Karzai seen as increasing threat to Afghanistan's political stability

By Sune Engel Rasmussen
''The former Afghan president has cast himself as a unifier of the country, but his manoeuvring against his successor, Ashraf Ghani, suggests otherwise.''

 A stone’s throw from the presidential palace in Kabul, you can see the lines of dignitaries awaiting their appointments from early in the morning: tribal leaders and elders from across the country queue up to get inside, where the audience also counts foreign ambassadors and cabinet ministers.

It’s not, however, the current Afghan president they are queuing to see, but his predecessor at his nearby city centre residence.

Nine months after he relinquished power in Kabul, Hamid Karzai is a lingering, but formidable presence on the political scene, and his influence and interventions are increasingly seen as a threat to Afghanistan’s political stability.
The former president has curtailed the erratic behaviour that so irritated his international partners during his near-decade long rule, casting himself as a genial statesman and supposed unifier of the country.
The new president, Ashraf Ghani, meanwhile, has failed deliver on promises to jumpstart the economy, struggled to appoint officials to key security positions, and risked significant political capital by making overtures to Pakistan.
Given its history of harbouring insurgents, Ghani’s pivot to Pakistan is controversial, and Karzai’s response has been ambiguous. In an interview with the Guardian in March he insisted he would keep quiet and advise Ghani behind the scenes. “I absolutely support this government,” he said.
Many, however, question how genuine this assertion is. A senior western diplomat told the Guardian that Karzai has been trying for months to undercut Ghani’s government, with the intention of bringing it down. Should this happen, an interim government would likely take over, and Karzai would step forward to fill the vacuum as the self-styled father of the nation, he said.
Aware of Karzai’s intentions, but keen to avoid an open clash he might not win, Ghani has in the past tolerated the former president’s manoeuvres to a certain extent. “In the political game, Karzai is leagues ahead of almost everyone else here. Frankly, he is leagues ahead of us too. It just took us a while to figure it out,” the same source said.
A presidential aide who regularly meets Karzai agreed. “Karzai knows everyone in this country. Ghani does not,” he said.
The former president denies he is building up opposition. “Meeting tribal leaders and elders from around the country is nothing new for Mr Karzai. This is how it used to be during the last 14 years,” said Aimal Faizi, a long-time aide.

“It is the Afghan political culture and also his personal style,” he said. “The strong bond between President Karzai and Afghan elders and leaders from all around the country can not be ignored by either side.”
Either way, Ghani now seems to have had enough. Last month on a trip to Kandahar, he struck back.
Kandahar is a Karzai stronghold and home to his half-brother Shah Wali Karzai, who heads the Popalzai tribe and wields considerable influence. The former president ruled largely through patronage, building personal relations with strongmen whose excesses and corruption he is accused of ignoring. They now stand in the way of Ghani’s pledge to centralise power and create more transparency.
“There are lots of warlords in Kandahar. They are like rats,” said Mohammad Yusuf, a member of the provincial council. “The Karzai government dug channels for the rats underground, brought them to government, made them officials, and today they have power.”
According to local media, Ghani told a group of civil society members: “From now on, there are no parallel governments in Kandahar.” The newly appointed governor, Humayun Azizi, was his official representative, he said.
When Ghani came to Kandahar, one of the strongest power brokers in the south, the police chief Lt Gen Abdul Raziq, made a point of leaving town.
“What did piss off the Ghani camp was that ahead of Ghani’s visit, people close to Karzai rang around to tribal leaders and said ‘don’t turn up’,” a western security official said. The president’s advisers supposedly convinced the elders to come after all, but the incident reinforced the impression that Ghani has very little wiggle room.
“You don’t want your former boss breathing down your neck,” the same source said.
The conflict between Ghani and Karzai came to a head with a memorandum of understanding signed in May between the Afghan and Pakistani spy agencies and confirmed by the Pakistani army, to enhance intelligence cooperation. Many Afghans saw the deal as selling out to a sworn enemy.
The deal gave Karzai a platform to launch an attack on Ghani that chimed with public opinion. As a result, he has come to be seen by many as a protector of national sovereignty. To reinforce this image, he keeps up a busy travel schedule to countries uncomfortable with closer Afghan-Pakistani cooperation such as India, China and Russia.
Faizi, Karzai’s aide, said Afghans were right to protest against the memorandum, “which is against the national interests of their country. The protest is [not] against individuals but against inappropriate policies of the Afghan government”.
Karzai may partly be fighting for his legacy. In rooting out corruption, Ghani will inevitably target people who amassed astonishing fortunes on the former president’s watch.
Karzai allies have been sidelined, among them the former vice-president Yunus Qanuni and the intelligence chief Rahmatullah Nabil, who opposed the memorandum with Pakistan. That puts Karzai in an awkward position given his tacit support for Ghani during the elections.
“Karzai feels like Ghani wouldn’t have gotten the presidency without him,” said the western security official.
The infighting could have wider repercussions, said Haroon Mir, a political analyst, pointing out that Ghani needs wide political support to begin peace talks with the Taliban.
“It’s not good at this time to lose political support or create opportunities for political opposition to emerge,” Mir said.
If Ghani has tried to send a message to Karzai to back off, the former president is unlikely to comply. Aides and analysts agree that he is positioning himself as the only viable alternative to a government that so far has not delivered.
“Karzai knows a lot of games, and one of his games is the loya jirga,” Ghani’s aide said, referring to the assembly that can pave the way for, among other things, a change in the constitution. Afghan presidents can currently only serve two terms, which Karzai has already done, but if he rallies support for a loya jirga, he can mount a challenge on a whole different level.
Karzai “is the only known political leader of Afghanistan”, Mir said. “He has all the ingredients to be a national leader - many resources, political support, his own network of influential people. If there is a crisis, he will emerge as the only national leader.”

Video Report - Pakistan - Arshad Sharif Reveals PTI mega corruption in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa

Arshad Sharif Reveals PTI mega corruption in KPK by arsched

Mysterious silence of Pakistan’s commercial liberal elites on the revealing investigations regarding Sabeen Mahmud’s murder

By Ali Abbas Taj

With every passing day, there is increasing forensic, eye witness and circumstantial evidence piling up against Saad Aziz Deobandi and other ISIS-affiliated ASWJ killers. These killers not only murdered Sabeen Mahmud in front of her own mother, they are also involved in many other massacres and murders including the Safoora Goth massacre of 51 Ismaili Shia Muslims.
In the last few weeks, police investigations have revealed that Saad Aziz Deobandi and the rest of his terrorist gang
– scouted Sabeen’s café (The 2nd Floor) for which there is photographic evidence
– translated and promoted the videos of ASWJ founder Haq Nawaz Jhangvi for his online magazine
– Sadia Jamal Deobandi, a female activist of Jamaat-e-Islami and ASWJ, is also under investigation for the Safoora gang massacre.
– Polygraph tests confirming the role of these terrorists in Sabeen’s murder, Safoora Goth massacre along with attacks against Shias, Bohra Shias, Sunni Barelvis, educationists and police officers
– Eye witness accounts including some of the surviving victims of the Safoora Goth massacre
When the focus of Sabeen’s murder was to encash the Baloch cause by baselessly attributing this murder to the Pakistan army, these commercial “liberal” elites were non-stop in their condemnation. Now that the evidence implicates the same Takfiri Deobandi terrorists in Sabeen’s murder who previously even killed army generals and other high ranking officers, why the silence by these same commercial “liberal” elites?
Is it because these same “liberal” elites frequently promote anti-Ahmadi, pro-Taliban Deobandi hate cleric Tahir Ashrafi as a “progressive”! Bear in mind, this is the same Tahir Ashrafi who engineered the release of Malik Ishaq while Tahir Ashrafi’s TTP-ASWJ comrades were busy in attacking the Pakistan army Headquarters in Rawalpindi and massacring our soldiers.
Is it because these same commercial “liberal” elites frequently obfuscate Shia Genocide in false binaries such as Sunni-Shia “sectarian violence” and divert attention away from the Takfiri Deobandi perpetrators of violence against Sunnis, Shias and Christians in Pakistan?
These commercial “liberal” elites headed by the BeenaSarwar-NajamSethi lobby have gone silent on the Sabeen Mahmud’s murder, just as they went silent on the murder of other progressive individuals like Shahbaz Bhatti, Mohsin Naqvi and Professor Sibte Jafar. Because it does not suit their commercial interests to speak the truth about the radical Deobandi lobby which is unfortunately either directly or indirectly supported by the same liberals. Indeed it was none other than Beena Sarwar’s Jang Group’s associate Najam Sethi who released over 100 ASWJ-LeJ terrorists during his tenure as Punjab Caretaker CM in 2013. This is the same Najam Sethi who not only promoted ASWJ chief Luhdyanvi from his Friday Times blog but also from his prime time show at Geo TV.
When you write and expose the hypocrisy of this commercial “liberal” mafia, they can only respond with forgeries and nonsensical slurs such as “fauji touts”, “sectarian hate blog” etc. These commercial “liberal” elites are never sincere with any cause. Their sole purpose is to hijack causes, distort narratives and sell such dishonesty to the highest bidder within and outside Pakistan. By misappropriating Sabeen’s murder to encash and exploit the miseries of the Balochs, these elites harmed both the Baloch cause and Pakistan while also diverting outrage from Sabeen’s actual murderers – who happen to be their fellow comrades in the Tahir Ashrafi lobby.
These commercial “liberal” elites spent a great deal of time bashing Komal Rizvi’s selfies with Edhi and Hamza Abbasi’s comments but are completely silent when the true murderers of Sabeen Mahmud are being exposed. Overall, their selective and mysterious silence exposes that they stand not on Sabeen’s side but on the side of those who killed her.

Pakistan - Saudi slave Nawaz Bans Translation Of Sacred Words

A new legislation approved June 4th; Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif has banned the translation of sacred Arabic words into English. The move has been seconded by Islamic religious leaders including Mufti Muneeb Ur Rehman and Mufti Muhammad Naeem .
Naeem said the decision should be “enforced in letter and spirit”, the website reported, while Rehman agreed that “some religious terms and names are best described in Arabic”.
Nasir Saeed Director of Centre For Legal Aid, Assistance and Settlement has warned that the new legislation could have a significant affect on the religious minorities within Pakistan.
“Keeping in view the present situation of the country where extremism, fundamentalism and hatred against Christians and other religious minorities is on the rise…there is a possibility that this policy could have a negative impact, especially on the lives of non-Muslims who are already suffering because of the government’s discriminatory policies against them,” Saeed said.
“There is also the chance that people will misuse this provision if they consider any translation of any word offensive or insulting to any Islamic word.”

- See more at:

Is Being A Women In Pakistan A Crime?

More than 900 cases of honor killings emerge in Pakistan each year. According to reports, 500 women were abducted and another 400 raped in Punjab in the previous year.
Being a women in the Pakistani society is a crime and to top it all off, being a Christian women is even greater a problem.
Mehboob Khan legal aid advisor of Human Rights Commission of Pakistan HRCP. Centre for legal Aid Assistance and Settlement said, “Women, children and religious minorities are among the most disadvantage groups. Christians especially prefer to remain silent when it comes to speaking about social justice. There are different forms of gender based violence for which society is to be blamed”.
A meeting of 35 participants was called to discuss concerns over sexual and gender based abuse of women. In the meeting the case of three Christian women including an eight year old who was raped was also put forward and CLAAS has pursued regular vistis to the families and arranged police intervention as well.
“Our struggles end at the doors of provincial assembly of the Punjab”, Bushra Khaliq, another panellist, told AsiaNews at the sidelines of the event. “A feudal and tribal mindset generally prevails among the lawmakers. Whenever the issue of a pro woman bill is raised, everybody becomes concerned about its misuse. This affects both the policy and psyche that follows”, said Executive Director of Women in Struggle for Empowerment.
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Pakistan's Ramadan laws force everyone to go hungry

In Pakistan, it is forbidden to drink or eat in public during Ramadan. You can be sent to jail, heavily fined or even beaten by Islamic vigilantes. Still, some people criticize the rigid Ramadan laws.
Last month, a brutal heat wave killed more than 1,250 people in Pakistan - many of them died of dehydration while fasting in sweltering temperatures. Even then, the government did not relax a 34-year-old law requiring Muslims to abstain from eating and drinking in public during the holy month of Ramadan.
In 1981, the military dictator Zia-ul-Haq introduced Ehtiram-e-Ramadan (Respect for Ramadan), an Islamic law that prescribes punishments of up to three months in jail and a fine for people who drink or eat publicly. "A person who, according to the tenets of Islam, is under an obligation to fast shall not eat, drink or smoke in a public place during fasting hours in the month of Ramadan," the law says.
"We cannot allow the liberal people to secularize our country, our society," Zia Ahmed, a small trader in the southern city of Karachi, told DW. "The respect of Ramadan is mandatory for all citizens of Pakistan. There can't be any compromise on it." As for religious minorities: "They live in an Islamic country and must obey its rules."
The restaurants are closed from fajr (dawn) until maghreb (dusk), and the shopkeepers only sell takeaway food items. If you are hungry, thirsty - or sick - the only place for you is home. At offices - both public and private - you are not allowed to eat.
"The law is inhumane and violates fundamental human rights," social activist Abrar Ahmed told DW. "Nobody should force anybody to do anything," he said. "Those who want to fast have the right to do so, but those who don't want to fast have equal rights."
'Show respect'
In the late 1990s, Pakistan was not as fanatical and religiously intolerant as it is today. But, even back then, it was unimaginable to eat or drink in public during Ramadan. My fellow secular students and I discovered a hospital cafeteria near our university in Karachi. There, alongside laborers and religious minorities such as Christians or Hindus, we could eat without any problem.
Now, I've been told, even the hospital cafeterias don't serve food during Ramadan. And, even if they did, it is very likely that someone around you might accuse you of blasphemy.
"Those who do not fast should behave as if they were fasting," religious scholar Abdul Qudoos Muhammadi told the German news agency DPA. "Non-Muslims and elderly or sick Muslims can eat but they should show respect for fasting Muslims and avoid eating or drinking openly," he added.
Progressively worse
With the war in Afghanistan and growth of Islamist organizations such as the Taliban in the region, things have taken a turn for the worse in the past few years. Religious extremism and intolerance are on the rise in the South Asian Islamic country.
"Forget about Ramadan - I have to be careful about what I do in public throughout the year: what I say, what I wear," the journalist Tehmina Niazi told me. "People become more pious during Ramadan and I have to be more careful," she said.
On a number of occasions - and not just involving Ramadan - people have taken the law into their hands and punished Christians and Hindus for a perceived lack of respect for Islam.
Shahzeb Siddiqui, a liberal Muslim in Karachi, says respect is two-way. "If the religious people can't respect my rights, I am not ready to respect theirs. It is as simple as that," he told DW. "And when these people go to Europe and the US, they insist on their rights. They protest against the veil ban in France, but they don't allow Christians in Pakistan to live freely. I find it hypocritical."

Pakistan won't petition court for 26/11 mastermind Terrorist Lakhvi's voice sample

Pakistani authorities will not file a fresh petition seeking the voice sample of LeT operations commander Zakiur Rehman Lakhvi in the anti-terrorism court hearing the Mumbai attacks case, a top prosecutor said on Sunday.
The remarks by prosecutor Chaudhry Azhar came just two days after Prime Minister Narendra Modi and his Pakistani counterpart Nawaz Sharif agreed during a meeting in Russia to discuss ways to speed up the Mumbai attacks trial in Pakistan, including providing voice samples of the accused.
“The issue of obtaining the voice sample of Lakhvi has been over. We had filed an application in the (anti-terrorism) court in 2011 seeking the voice sample of Lakhvi but the judge (Malik Akram Awan) had dismissed it on the ground such law exists that allows obtaining of voice sample of an accused," Chaudhry told PTI in Lahore.
“The government will not file a fresh petition in the trial court requesting for obtaining voice sample of Lakhvi," he said.
Earlier, Lakhvi’s lawyer Rizwan Abbasi told Hindustan Times that his client will refuse to provide a voice sample. “My client has refused in the past and will refuse again,” he said.

Under Pakistani law, a suspect’s consent has to be obtained before recording a voice sample. Lakhvi and the six other suspects charged with involvement in the Mumbai attacks have repeatedly used this provision to stymie the opposition.

Indian officials say Lakhvi’s voice sample is required so that it can be compared to recordings of the voices of the people who were present in a control room in Karachi, from where the attackers in Mumbai were guided.

The voice sample is crucial for nailing Lakhvi, who was freed on bail in April after the anti-terrorism court said there was insufficient evidence against him.

Ajmal Kasab, the lone attacker who was captured alive, and Pakistani-American terrorist David Headley have both said Lakhvi was present in the Karachi control room.

Prosecutor Chaudhry Azhar’s comments show Pakistan may not go the extra mile in bringing the accused in the Mumbai attacks to justice despite Prime Minister Sharif's commitment to his Indian counterpart in Russia.

“We have told India in writing that there was no law in Pakistan that allows obtaining a voice sample of an accused. Even there is no such law in India and the USA,” Chaudhry claimed. He said such a law can only be introduced only through Pakistan’s parliament. 

Information Minister Pervaiz Rashid, a close aide of Sharif, was non-committal about the government taking this matter to parliament.

“Pakistan has included the Mumbai issue in the joint statement because we wanted India to provide us solid evidence against the accused for their prosecution," Rashid said.

“Pakistan is prosecuting those allegedly involved in the Mumbai attacks case. But we need evidence. After the joint statement of the Pakistani and Indian prime ministers, the onus of providing evidence is on India," he said in response to a question on whether the government will bring a legislation regarding the recording of voice samples.

Rashid claimed India had not yet provided Pakistan "solid evidence" regarding the accused in the Mumbai attacks case.

Lakhvi's counsel Rizwan Abbasi said the government was stymied over the issue of voice samples four years ago.

"Unless it goes for legislation in the parliament in this regard, the voice sample of my client has become a (matter of) history," he said.

Lakhvi was released on bail on April 10. He and the six other accused – Abdul Wajid, Mazhar Iqbal, Hamad Amin Sadiq, Shahid Jameel Riaz, Jamil Ahmed and Younis Anjum – were arrested and charged with planning, financing and executing the attacks in November 2008 that killed 166 people.

India has been angered by the tardy prosecution of the seven suspects and the Pakistan government’s refusal to act against Jamaat-ud-Dawah chief Hafiz Mohammad Saeed, an alleged mastermind of the attacks.

Balochistan - Flaws In Recruitment Process

Balochistan is the most impoverished province of Pakistan. Living stand of people in Balochistan is lowest among all the provinces of Pakistan. Unemployment is rampant in the province and it’s really hard for educated youth to get jobs. Government jobs are the only source of employment in the province. In such scenario recruitment process of government jobs must have been robust, transparent and free of any nepotism. Unfortunately, that’s not the case and there are several flaws in government jobs recruitment process due to incompetence of incumbent Balochistan government.
In budget of 2014-15, Balochistan government had announced recruitment on over 4,000 jobs in different departments. Apart from recruitments on few hundred vacancies there was not much employment during the last fiscal year. The main reason that recruitment process can’t be completed was that government ministers could not agree on formulae to share jobs. It’s a normal practice in Balochistan where Provincial ministers along with departmental secretaries give away the jobs to either their relatives or sell them to common people. Dr. Malik Baloch and his cabinet miserably failed to bring any change to this cruel practice which virtually closes the door of employment on under privileged class of Balochistan who can’t afford to buy jobs.
Hundreds of jobs were advertised in civil secretariat of Balochistan but the recruitment process never moved beyond that point. Some ministries re-advertised their jobs and handed over the task of conducting tests to Balochistan Testing Service. This not only delayed recruitment process but also made it difficult for under privileged students to pay the fee of tests conducted by BTS. Advertised jobs in quite a few departments were cancelled because the relatives of concerned ministers had not passed the test.
Then comes National testing Service (NTS), largest testing body of Pakistan. Provincial government hired the services of NTS to conduct tests for vacancies of over 4,000 teachers in education department. This process was marred by irregularities from the outset. Test fee set was NTS was Rs. 1000 which was unacceptably high. According to sources, NTS earned over RS. 100 million form this test fees alone. Application process started in December last year and even now final recruitment is not in sight. During tests there were complaints of mismanagement in many districts including Quetta, Mastung, Killa Saifullah, Jhal Magsi amongst others. In short NTS failed to do a proper job.
Balochistan Public Service Commission (BPSC) is the body which carries out recruitment of gazetted jobs. In past, this body was marred by corruption of its former chairman and members. Appointment of new chairman brought some sort of betterment to BPSC but new rules increased the hurdles in way of recruitment. New rules of BPSC ask candidates to verify all their documents from issuing authorities before submitting applications. This rule has virtually made it impossible for a lot of candidates to submit applications on time. BPSC extended its deadline for recruitment but again this is not the solution of the problem. People at BPSC fail to realize the inconvenience that they are causing for applicants in Balochistan.
Government of Balochistan need to realize their responsibility in this regard and should attempt to remove the hurdles in recruitment process. All ministers and secretaries should not be allowed to recruit persons of their choice in their departments. Practice of merit should be ensured and there should be no room for nepotism. At the same time, structural improvements are required in the job recruitment system to make it more robust and convenient for people.
Improvements in government job recruitment procedure are must but it will only solve a minor part of the problem. Unemployment woes of the problem will not be solved until private sector employment opportunities are not generated. So far, Government of Balochistan has not done anything to create private job opportunities and its one more addition to long list of failures of incompetent government of Dr. Malik Balch and his allies.

Malala opens school for Syrian refugee girls on 18th birthday


Education advocate and Nobel Peace Prize Laureate Malala Yousafzai marked her 18th birthday in Lebanon Sunday, inaugurating the Malala Fund’s “Malala Yousafzai All-Girls School” near the Syrian border, which will provide quality secondary education to more than 200 Syrian girls living in informal camps and out of school in the Bekaa Valley region.
In honour of the third Malala Day today, the Malala Fund also announced a new grant of $250,000 in support to UNICEF and UNHCR, to meet the funding shortfall for girls’ school programming in Jordan’s Azraq refugee camp.
“I am honoured to mark my 18th birthday with the brave and inspiring girls of Syria. I am here on behalf of the 28 million children who are kept from the classroom because of armed conflict. Their courage and dedication to continue their schooling in difficult conditions inspires people around the world and it is our duty to stand by them,” Malala said.
“On this day, I have a message for the leaders of this country, this region and the world – you are failing the Syrian people, especially Syria’s children. This is a heartbreaking tragedy – the world's worst refugee crisis in decades.”
In Lebanon, the Malala Fund is providing funding to local partner NGO the KAYANY Foundation to provide baccalaureate and life skills training to 200 Syrian refugee girls between 14 to 18 years old.
The new curriculum will enable students to receive their baccalaureate or vocational degrees through the Lebanese Ministry of Education and Higher Education or the Syrian equivalent. Students unable to commit to the four-year baccalaureate training will participate in skills courses intended to help them find work and generate their own incomes.
Leading up to Malala Day, people globally have taken action in support of Malala Fund’s #BooksNotBullets campaign to shed light on the importance of quality education for girls around the world.
Together with leading education groups, the Malala Fund is calling on world leaders to invest an additional $39 billion in education – the equivalent of only eight days of military spending – to ensure that every child gets 12 years of free, quality primary and secondary education. The online campaign culminates this Sunday for Malala’s birthday.
“On behalf of the world’s children, I demand of our leaders to invest in books instead of bullets. Books, not bullets, will pave the path towards peace and prosperity. Our voices will continue to get louder and louder until we see politicians and our governments invest in the education of their youth rather than military and war,” said Malala.
“To all the students, you will read new books. You will discover new ideas. You will learn together. You will dream together. And you will inspire the world”.

Video Report - Pakistan - Aseefa Bhutto visits Lyari General Hospital

Aseefa Bhutto Zardari visited Lyari General Hospital to personally review the health facilities available to the patients in the old city area.
She visited different wards and met with patients and inquired about their health and the treatment being provided to them by hospital management.
Aseefa Bhutto Zardari also met with the attendants of the patients waiting outside the hospital building and intermingled with them amid Jeay Bhutto slogans from them. She also heard their complaints.
Aseefa Bhutto Zardari inquired from the hospital administration about more needs for the welfare of the patients and assured to setup a patients welfare society at lyari general hospital for the poorest patients.

Bilawal Bhutto supports Pakistan Army in Karachi

Chairman Pakistan Peoples Party Bilawal Bhutto has said that his party is ready to extend its full support to Pakistan Army in Sindh against corruption and land mafia.
Bilawal Bhutto met with Corps Commander Karachi General Naeed Mukhtar at CM house Karachi before the meeting of apex committee.
Chairman PPP has acknowldged the efforts of Pak Army in the peace and stability of metropolitan city and exchanged views on Karachi operation.
“Our top leadership of his party gave their lives for peace in the country, and never bowed down to the enemies”. PPP chairman added.
Bilawal assured his party’s full support to Rangers and Corps Commander to uproot the terrorism from the province.
Apex Committee meeting held in CM House presided by CM Sindh Qaim Ali Shah, in which Core Commander Karachi,
Provinicial Interior Minister, Inspector General (IG) police, Director General(DG) Rangers and officials of intelligence department were present.
The Committe focused the Implementation of decisions made on basis of National Action Plan. This Apex Committee meeting has a great importance after the limitations of Rangers powers in Karachi.
All the stakeholders in the meeting, have agreed that Karachi operation will be brought to its logical conclusion and city of fear will be brought back as city of lights.

Young Christians in Pakistan form group to protect their churches from terrorist attacks

Inspired by words from the Bible, young Christian men in Pakistan have formed a group to defend their churches, after Christian congregations recently became the targets of terrorist attacks in the predominantly Muslim country.
Sixteen Christians from different walks of life—bankers, musicians, civil society workers, teachers and computer technicians—banded together with a commitment to protect their places of worship.
They took inspiration from these words from Luke 11:21: ""When a strong man, fully armed, guards his own house, his possessions are safe."
At first, the group started protecting the Shalom Presbyterian Church in Bahar Colony, Lahore, the cultural capital and one of the most densely populated areas of the country.
Since then, the young Christian men have expanded their mission, now providing protection and security to at least six more churches in nearby areas.
In Pakistan, only 2 percent of the population are Christians. They have been victims of terrorist attacks, like the bombing outside a Peshawar church in 2013.
Waqar Peter Gill, the team's spokesman, said the group wants to help protect more churches in the future.
"We are more blessed and strengthened in God day by day and we are looking forward to reach more and more churches in Lahore and other parts of the country, irrespective of the denomination," Gill said.
To be able to do this, Gill encouraged young Christians in Pakistan like them to join their team.
"For youth I want to say you are the backbone of the Church and society without you and your support we can't move on and pass the torch of salvation, love, peace and happiness to future generations," Gill said.
"Please join Church Youth, Church Security and many other services offered under the umbrella of Church. Our previous generations are history. We all are present but you guys are the future of Church and Christianity. You guys are the future Ambassadors of Christ," he added.