Pakistan: The land of the pure, for whom? – by Sybil Daniel

The “Land of the Pure” is once again being blackmailed by Zia’s vision. His creation, the Taliban and his laws that persecute minorities are at the forefront of all that is bad in Pakistan. The controversial laws are used to resolve land disputes mainly in the rural areas of Punjab and to remove the vulnerable and untouchable members of minority religions, by intolerant communities. In many cases the real perpetrators of blasphemy, who disgrace the holy prophets by inciting hatred and enacting blasphemy claims for their own benefit, do so with impunity.
Minorities in Pakistan are very well aware of the sensitive emotions of their Muslim countrymen. It is inconceivable that they would ever use derogatory remarks for the prophets of any religion. They simply do not need to and are very aware of the fatal consequences. However, the detestation for minorities is a common theme amongst rural communities. The minority community is frequently subjected to verbal and physical abuse. They are expected to remain silent if something insulting is said regarding their religion and in the main they comply. In recent times we have seen an increase in malevolence towards the Christian community much due to the Iraq and Afghanistan War which is perceived by many extremists and those they influence, as a religious war between Christianity and Islam. This has resulted in a heightened level of blasphemy cases and large scale incidents of persecution, yet few cases attain any media attention. many cases simply go unnoticed. This rise in intolerance and hatred for minorities has been allowed to continue, mostly unchecked, by the very state whose duty it is to protect them.

Not everyone who criticizes the PPP is pro-establishment – by European

Editor’s note: There are some very valuable points in the following article, which deserve to be considered and openly debated. The LUBP is open to criticism; while some of us may disagree with some of the arguments presented in this post, we are very happy to acknowledge diverse voices at this forum and have a constructive debate.
Though I totally agree that the “fake civil society” (FCS) and all the parties listed in Sana Jokhio’s article have blood on their hands, I can’t agree that the PPP does not.
The PPP did not want to amend the blasphemy law. There are many statements from PPP politicians on this issue. The best of course is Rehman Malik’s statement, that he would shoot a blasphemer himself. (reported by the NYT) Mr Malik is not anybody in the PPP, but the interior minister.
That all the other parties and groups have blood on their hands does not wipe away the blood on the hands of the PPP.
I have read all the articles by LUBP on the issue of the fake civil society blaming everything on the PPP, but in all these articles all the others were blamed, it was never explained why the PPP did not want to amend the law and why it did not support Salman Taseer and Sherry Rehman.
To say, that we don’t support Sherry Rehman, because she is rich and from the establishment and has done some other things wrong in the past, is nonsense. To say, we don’t want to amend the law now, because then there will be an uprise against the government is cowardish. When is the right time to amend the law? After much more people have been killed?

Nabeel agrees to stay in cabinet

ISLAMABAD, Jan 21: People’s Party leader Nabeel Gabol, who resigned as minister of state for ports and shipping, has decided to retain the post after a meeting with Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani here on Friday.
Mr Gabol sent his resignation on Wednesday to the prime minister, who called the former and said he should have consulted the party leadership before tendering the resignation.
“When a raid was conducted at your home you should have contacted Interior Minister Rehman Malik or me instead of issuing statements to the media because you are a member of the PPP CEC as well,” Mr Gilani reportedly told Mr Gabol. The prime minister had also asked Mr Gabol to meet him in Islamabad.
During the meeting, the sources told Dawn, Mr Gilani contacted Awami National Party chief Asfandyar Wali Khan on telephone.
Mr Asfandyar recently complained to President Asif Ali Zardari about some remarks made by Mr Gabol on a television channel.

Thanks to Zardari and PPPP: KESC reinstates 4,500 workers

Sacked employees of KESC gather outside the office during a protest in Karachi.—AFP photo
KARACHI: After intense deliberations and the government’s intercession, the Karachi Electric Supply Company on Sunday night withdrew the order through which it had sacked 4,500 employees.

The retrenchment had set off furious protests in Karachi, disabling the utility’s network in several areas of the city.
The decision was announced at the Governor’s House by the Federal Minister for Water and Power, Raja Pervez Ashraf, and the MQM’s deputy convener Dr Farooq Sattar while talking to media after several hours of consultations between a three-member committee.
The committee comprised Raza Rabbani, Khurshid Shah and Raja Pervez Ashraf.
Displaying the order signed by the KESC’s chief executive, Tabish Gohar, reversing the sacking of employees, Raja Pervez Ashraf expressed a hope that the workers would now call of their sit-in.
He said that the government holds 26 per cent shares in the company and not only believed in protecting rights of workers but also of the investors.
He lauded the efforts made by the Sindh Governor and Chief Minister besides coalition partners and especially the nine member committee constituted by the provincial government headed by the Sindh minister for Power Shazia Marri, which in fact had done the ground work and provided the basis for the outcome.
Dr Farooq Sattar welcomed the outcome and said the decision has been taken to protect the interest of affected KESC employees and about 20 million people of Karachi who have suffered a lot because of the problem.
Raja Pervez Ashraf and Dr Farooq Sattar parried questions about the fate of FIRs lodged by the KESC management against striking employees.
Earlier in the day, the KESC management informed the government-appointed committee that it was not possible for it to reverse the retrenchment.

Khadim-e-Aala’s Punjab Police – by Ali Raja

On 13th January, 2011,  Chief Minister of Punjab tagged Khadim e Alla Mian Muhammad Shahbaz Sharif very innocently complained that the increased budget of Punjab Police did not work and that the law and order situation of the province is getting worse every day. Shahbaz Sharif was very curious about where had the budget actually gone. Though stories from Shahbaz Sharif’s good governance are very bright and can easily lead one to the whereabouts of the increased budget but Khadim e Alla seems to be suffering from amnesia so being a humble boss of my Khadim I will try reminding Khadim e Alla about where his efforts led to:-
The Police in Punjab has very successfully brought back the golden era of 90′s. The extrajudicial killings are on a rapid fire run in Punjab. Property disputes, family clashes and personal grudges of the Lion League members are very efficiently being settled by the Punjab Police. Punjab Police has is translating the dreams of Khadim e Alla into reality. Features, investigative stories and articles be kept aside videos of these heroic actions are easily accessible. Lions of Punjab are off to speedy justice.
The Police in Punjab has very successfully safe guarded the poodles of Sharif family.  Chief Justice of Lahore High Court Khawaja Muhammad Sharif, the 40 year long buddy of Nawaz Sharif and their faithful servant at superior judiciary was facing protests from the lawyers’ community on his mindless and biased verdicts. The lawyers of Lahore took to streets and demanded a resignation but how can one ask for the resignation of a Sharif Poodle. The Punjab Police was very efficient in tearing clothes and breaking batons on lawyer heads and so peace prevailed in Lahore High Court.
The Punjab Police has very successfully cooperated with Khadim e Alla in character assassination campaign against a 59 year old judge in whose bench was the case regarding disqualification of Nawaz Sharif. Punjab Police did not only manage to obtain a statement from Nanho Goraia regarding the involvement of Justice Muhammad Bilal Khan in derogatory and malicious activities but also leaked the statement to their favorite puppet Ansar Abbasi.

There was a naughty boy: Salma Mahmud remembers her brother Salmaan Taseer

There was a naughty boy,
And a naughty boy was he,
He would not stop at home,
He would not quiet be.
– John Keats
There are so many memories of those days gone by, that it is almost impossible to be coherent about them. Suffice it to say, that as I was seven years old when Salmaan was born, I ‘brought him up by hand’, as did Pip’s older sister in Great Expectations. He took his first wobbly steps under the supervision of myself and our best friends Bonnie and Deepak Surjit Singh in Simla in the 1940’s, with much applause to accompany the feat…
Author, Mariam Taseer and Salmaan on a motorbike
After that momentous wobble, Salmaan, or Billoo, as he was then called, grew into a chubby toddler with curly hair, luminous sparkling eyes and ‘a cupid’s bow mouth’, as he himself described it. As for the nickname Billoo, he grew to hate it, and eventually got rid of it by refusing to answer anyone unless they addressed him by his given name.
The Simla days saw Salmaan grow from a baby wearing smocked outfits into a rosy cheeked rascal in knickers. He was very much in the company of his aayah from Jammu, Mai Soma by then, as I was going to Simla’s Christ Church School, with scarcely any time for either him or my flaxen haired sibling Mariam, who was also rosy cheeked, but with a belligerent look to her eye, which boded ill for all those who crossed her.
From Simla we moved to Delhi, where our father was now Deputy Director of the Labour Department, after having worked in the Government of India’s Anti-War Ministry in Simla. Once again Salmaan was a little boy who was there but not really there, as he was under the supervision of Mai Soma, that formidable Jamvaal of Rubenesque proportions, which were much appreciated by the male visitors who came to our colonial-style bungalow at 48 Lodhi Road. The more visible and audible member of our trio was Mariam, whose eternal cry was, ‘Main ne bhi jaana hai,’ whenever she saw me leave on one of my excursions with my cyclist gang. She also wormed her way into the hedges in our garden which were hollow, and could be turned into rooms in which to play ‘House House’. But Salmaan remained aloof from all this terrorist activity as he was simply too little. However he certainly made his presence felt when he succumbed to a severe ear infection which would have killed him had it not been for the newly-invented penicillin drug which saved his life.

Pakistan, South Africa Cricket Series?

Pakistan, South Africa Cricket Series starting from tomorrow 26 october 2010, this series contain 2 twenty20, 2 Test matches and 5 one day internationals.
Designed and Developed By Amir Sayani