------------------------------------------------------------------- DAWN WIRE SERVICE ------------------------------------------------------------------- Week Ending : 09 May 1998 Issue : 04/18 -------------------------------------------------------------------

Contents | National News | Business & Economy | Editorials & Features | Sports
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CONTENTS ===================================================================
NATIONAL NEWS Pakistan’s exports to Europe have risen: EU Pakistan, IMF teams discuss $180m loan US action on Kahuta biased, says Pakistan Revenue target likely to be realized Bishop Joseph to be buried tomorrow UK court refuses to stop Asif’s trial Court adjourns appeal hearing on updated voters lists Balochistan seeks Rs2.5bn loan for ADP Altaf demands more provinces Dam may be considered if it is a popular demand: PM --------------------------------- BUSINESS & ECONOMY IMF relaxes budget deficit criteria PR to be split into 3 core businesses before privatization GST on agenda of CBR Policy Board Registration of importers under ST not picking up Punjab to get Rs5bn for ADP Tea prices cut by Rs15-20 per kg Haider suggests amendment to banking cos ord NCBs to shut 464 more branches No future for industry in NWFP Banks to finance housing projects Stocks rise on renewed foreign buying --------------------------------------- EDITORIALS & FEATURES Islamabad Ardeshir Cowasjee State of mind Irfan Husain Islam's moral ideal Syed Muzaffar Husain ----------- SPORTS Rashid Latif to attend ICC captains moot Mansoor surprises Stewart on way to final Zarak defeats Lincou to clinch squash title

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NATIONAL NEWS
980509
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Pakistan’s exports to Europe have risen: EU
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By M. Ziauddin

ISLAMABAD, May 8: Pakistan’s trade with Europe has grown in the 
last couple of years despite perceived hurdles, like anti-dumping 
laws and child labour and environmental restrictions.
    
Talking to Dawn, Kurt Juul, ambassador and head of a delegation of 
European Commission in Pakistan, attributed this increased growth 
in trade between Pakistan and Europe to increase in exports from 
Pakistan rather than the other way round.
    
He said the WTO rules regarding dumping, child labour, environment 
and minimum wages were fair and equitable and they impacted on 
global trade positively rather than negatively.
 
He expected closer economic and trade cooperation between Europe 
and Pakistan following the signing of an agreement on April 22 in 
Brussels between this country and the Commission.
    
Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif, who was visiting Brussels, had 
initialled the agreement.
    
Mr Juul saw a lot of potential for exports from Pakistan to Europe. 
"Pakistani businessmen should understand that Europe is a 
competitive market and it wants goods of quality and of high 
standard."
    
"You must get to know the European conditions. Then you must know 
what you have and what you can sell to this market. We are very 
open. Pakistan has been exporting textiles and leather goods 
successfully. Now you should diversify products and markets," he 
added.
    
He did not agree with a perception that the anti-dumping rules were 
hitting Pakistani exports, because the system itself according to 
him was fair and open.
    
"It would be better if we don’t have anti-dumping cases. But when 
we have such cases, they are examined in depth, on the spot 
inspections are made and visits are undertaken to know the truth. 
It is not an arbitrary system," he explained.
    
On the child labour issue, Mr Kurt Juul said the European 
Commission understood the cultural situation when children were 
seen working on family farms or businesses, but there were other 
forms of child labour not understood or accepted by the people of 
Europe.
    
Here he mentioned the European Commission’s contribution to the SAP 
II and said substantive assistance was being provided for 
education, especially for education of the girls.
 
Discussing Afghanistan, Mr Juul said the European Commission 
endorsed UN efforts to bring peace in Afghanistan and the main 
players, Pakistan, Iran , the other countries of the area and of 
course the United States should be able to work out an acceptable 
solution to resolve the problem.
    
When asked about SAARC, he said in his opinion it depended entirely 
on the two major players of SAARC, Pakistan and India, to develop 
this regional association into a meaningful economic bloc.
    
He said it would help if the two countries enhanced their bilateral 
trade and encourage free flow of people across their borders.
    
Without specifically comparing the present Indo-Pakistan relations 
with those of Brazil and Argentina before the establishment of 
MERCOSUR, Mr Juul said today as a result of improved economic 
relations between the two Latin American countries under the 
MERCOSUR arrangement, the continent as a whole was experiencing 
relative progress, peace and stability.
 
Answering a question about Europe, he said the European Common 
market was not going to become a fortress against imports from 
outside and neither was it likely to enter into economic wars with 
other commercial giants like the US and Japan, "though there would 
be some problems and differences over market access.
 
But the best way to deal with this situation was to enter into open 
negotiations and new agreements to discipline world trade and 
establish a fair basis of global trading."
    
He said the process of unification of Europe was triggered by the 
aftermath of the second world war. "Our people were convinced that 
cooperation rather than confrontation was the solution to their 
problems."
    
Unification gives strength while confrontation is costly, "We are 
celebrating with some satisfaction the 48th anniversary of the 
first declaration of the first community agreement tomorrow (May 
9)."
    
The EC is going ahead from strength to strength, "and we can look 
back at some of the achievements with satisfaction. Euro is coming 
on stream on Jan 1 nest year and the establishment of a common 
European market was also an achievement. At the same time Europe is 
expanding its membership."
    
He identified the opening of frontiers in Europe as one of the 
major factors which helped in bringing together nations with 
historic, cultural and linguistic differences. "people could move 
freely across the continent and that brought down their mental 
barriers against each other."

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980509
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Pakistan, IMF teams discuss $180m loan
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Bureau Report

ISLAMABAD, May 8: A six-member IMF mission on Friday started talks 
with Pakistani officials on the disbursement of the third tranche 
of 180 million dollars by July out of a total of 1.6 billion 
dollars Extended Structural Adjustment Facility (ESAF) and Extended 
Fund Facility (EFF)
    
The mission, headed by a senior IMF executive, Ontonio Furtado, 
arrived here on Friday morning and started negotiations with the 
officials of the ministry of finance. The IMF mission is being 
assisted by its resident representative Shamsuddin Tariq.
    
A junior-level IMF team is already in the city and has been holding 
talks with the authorities of the Central Board of Revenue (CBR). 
The team completed the first round of talks with CBR chief 
Moeenuddin Khan on Wednesday and discussed with him the levy of 
general sales tax (GST) from thy next financial year.
    
The sources said serious policy matters will be discussed between 
Mr Furtado and deputy chairman planning commission Dr Hafeez Pasha 
next week. The mission would also meet Minister for Finance Senator 
Sartaj Aziz.
    
The sources said the IMF team would be apprised about the broad 
budgetary measures to be included in the budget for 1998- 99 with a 
view to effectively implement the structural reform programme of 
the PML government.
    
The major issues to come up for detailed discussions are: revenue 
collection, budget deficit with special reference to imposing fresh 
taxes, balance of payment position, privatisation, the banking 
sector reforms and over the issue of high power tariffs being 
charged by the Independent Power Producers (IPPs) will also be 
discussed.

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980506
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US action on Kahuta biased, says Pakistan
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Shaheen Sehbai
    
WASHINGTON, May 5: Pakistan on Monday regretted the sanctions 
imposed against Kahuta laboratories but a senior diplomat said 
Pakistan could live with them.
    
"It is discrimination on the part of the US and such policies or 
laws will not serve the purpose of non-proliferation," Ambassador 
Riaz Khokhar told a news briefing at the Pakistan embassy.
    
The briefing also covered Pakistan-US relations, the issue of F-16 
aircraft, President Clinton's proposed visit and the recent visit 
of Ambassador Bill Richardson to resolve the Afghan crisis.
    
The ambassador said the sanctions were not a surprise for Pakistan 
and they were not related to the test-firing of the Ghauri missile 

on April 6. "This review to impose sanctions has been going on for 
some time," he said.
    
Mr Khokhar said Kahuta Laboratories were in any case not importing 
anything from the US and the sanctions were "merely a paperwork. We 
are not disturbed about it."
    
On the F-16 issue, the ambassador confirmed an earlier 'Dawn' story 
that the US had offered writing off Pakistan's debt to the extent 
of the money owed by the US.
    
He said the offer was made by Ambassador Bill Richardson and was in 
the form of just an idea and had not been concretized into a full 
proposal.
    
"They wanted to test our initial reaction and we told them we would 
study the matter," he said.
    
Pakistan, he said, had formally informed the US that it would file 
a case in a US court to recover the money paid for the F-16 
aircraft and those proposals and options were being discussed after 
the decision to sue was conveyed to the US.
    
He clarified that Pakistan had not received any money from the US 
which had been used to build the aircraft but some 140 million 
dollars, paid by Pakistan but which remained unused, had been given 
back to Pakistan.
    
The ambassador also stated that any upgradation of the existing F-
16s with the PAF, in return for the money, was not on the cards. He 
said Pakistan would file the case in a US court before the deadline 
of January 1999 to preserve its right to sue but if an out-of-court 
settlement was reached, "we will withdraw our case."
    
Asked whether Pakistan was asking for interest accumulated on the 
$658 million during those years, Mr Khokhar said this was a matter 
which would come up at the right time.

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980505
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Revenue target likely to be realized 
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Ihtisham ul Haque
   
ISLAMABAD, May 4: Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif on Monday chaired a 
high-level meeting convened to discuss budgetary proposals to 
revive the economy and boost foreign investment in the country.
    
Informed sources told Dawn that the prime minister held a two-hour 
meeting with his economic team to discuss the factors responsible 
for failure to meet targets.
    
The prime minister was told about impediments being experienced in 
ehabilitating the economy.
    
Sources said the meeting discussed the revenue collection position 
and was informed that the revised annual target of Rs 305 billion 
was expected to be met despite a lot of problems. The overall 
impact of the seven economic packages offered by the government 
also came under extensive discussion. 
    
However, the meeting felt that the government must have full 
cooperation of the business community, especially in the recovery 
of taxes.
    
The failure to revive 4,000 sick industrial units was also 
discussed. The meeting was told that many such units were likely to 
be rehabilitated during the next financial year after injecting 
some money into them.
    
The issue of excessive power tariffs currently being charged by the 

Independent Power Projects (IPPs) was also briefly taken up, with 
the prime minister saying that WAPDA could not survive without 
getting these tariffs reduced.
    
Sources said the prime minister heard the points of view of te 
participants, who included Finance Minister Sartaj Aziz, Commerce 
Minister Ishaq Dar, and the deputy chief of the Planning 
Commission, Mr Hafeez Pasha.
    
The prime minister took up with his aides the provision of some 
relief to salaried and poorer sections of society in the budget.
    
The Chairman, Board of Investment (BoI), Mr Humayun Akhtar Khan, 
told Dawn that the meeting discussed a wide range of issues, with 
special reference to improving the economy.
    
Mr Humayun Khan said it was a good meeting. "All aspects of the 
economy were discussed and new proposals offered to further improve 
the economy".
    
A government handout on the meeting claimed that the process of 
economic revival had started, mainly due to incentives offered by 
the government. 
    
The meeting was informed that the growth rate had touched a figure 
of six per cent, the first such success over the last six years.
    
The meeting noted with satisfaction that the industrial sector was 
growing at a rate of six per cent and the private sector at a rate 
of 30 per cent.

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980509
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Bishop Joseph to be buried tomorrow
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By Shamsul Islam Naz 

FAISALABAD, May 8: The body of Faisalabad bishop Dr John Joseph, 
who committed suicide in Sahiwal on Wednesday night to protest 
against the blasphemy laws, has been placed at the Bishop House 
here where he will be buried on Sunday.
    
The bishop had shot himself in the head in front of the court of 
the additional sessions judge, Sahiwal, who sentenced a Christian, 
Ayub Masih, on the charge of committing offence under Section 295-C 
of the blasphemy laws.
    
Earlier, his body was removed forcibly by a group of mourners from 
Khushpur, his native village 54km from here near Samundari town. 
Scuffles broke out when some young mourners tried to prevent the 
removal of the body to Faisalabad. Police fired tear gas to 
disperse the youths.
    
Angry Christian youth invited another gas shelling and, later, 
aerial firing from the police when they tried to stage a 
demonstration and take out a procession from the Bishop House here. 
In retaliation, the youth pelted stones on the police. The clash 
left six people injured.
    
The removal of Dr John Joseph’s body, first from the Sahiwal 
additional sessions judge’s court on Thursday where he committed 
suicide, and then from Khushpur was marked by controversies and 
confusion.
    
According to a claim, before committing suicide Dr Joseph had 
conveyed his will to Father Yaqoob Farooq, in charge of the Sahiwal 
Parish, that his body be kept on the spot until the government 
repeals the blasphemy laws.
 
Despite hectic efforts of the Sahiwal police and the civil 
administration, the body was not allowed to be removed from the 
scene by the Christians of Sahiwal.
    
Later, close relatives of the deceased, including MNA Peter Jan 
Sahotra and MPA Johnson Michael, who reached Sahiwal from 
Faisalabad, succeeded in removing the body on Thursday morning 
against the wishes of the Christians of Sahiwal.
    
Under police protection, they brought the body to Khushpur, a 
completely isolated village having no road and rail link. There, 
family members of the deceased, MNA Peter Jan Sahotra and MPA 
Johnson Michael declared that the funeral and burial would take 
place on Thursday, May 7, at 4:00pm in Khushpur.
    
Accordingly, about five to six thousand Christians reached Khushpur 
for participation in the memorial service. But there was none to 
tell them the exact programme of the memorial service, nor any 
arrangements were made for their boarding and lodging.
    
On Thursday afternoon, it was announced by the organisers, 
including family members of the deceased, that the memorial service 
and funeral would take place at 10.00am on Friday (May 8).
    
On Friday morning, thousands of well-wishers and sympathisers of Dr 
Joseph gathered in Khushpur again as per schedule. But to their 
utter surprise and dismay there were little arrangements for the 
memorial service.
    
When the service were in progress, a group of 150 youths carrying 
placards and raising anti-government slogans interrupted it and 
declared that they would bury the bishop in Faisalabad where he had 
been residing since long.
    
The group also chanted slogans against the organisers and refused 
to listen to the speakers on the occasion. When some people from 
the participants also backed the youth, the organisers changed 
their mind and announced that "in recognition of sentiments of the 
people, it has been decided that the body of the bishop will be 
taken to Faisalabad and buried in the Bishop House on Sunday at 12 
noon; and that the final funeral rites will also be performed 
there."
    
The organisers then removed the body from the open ‘pandal’ and 
placed it in a hall of the adjacent church. But minutes after, the 
youth who had earlier disrupted the memorial service took the body 
in their custody and drove towards Faisalabad.
    
Their act annoyed the organisers who sought the police help. 
Although police blocked all the roads leading to Faisalabad, the 
youth succeeded in bringing the body to the city. The Bishop House 
and the Circular Road were encircled by a heavy contingent of the 
police in order to prevent the Christians from taking out a 
procession.
    
Earlier, the memorial service began in the presence of over 6,000 
people in Khushpur, a village which was basically developed by the 
Christians in 1901.
    
It was attended by Christian leaders from all over the country, 
including Arc Bishop Sineon Perpera (Karachi), Bishop Bonaventure 
Paul, Nuncio Renzo Frantinj (Islamabad), Bishop John Jamuel 
(Gojra), Bishop John (Multan), Human Rights Commission of Pakistan 
chairman Asma Jahangir and her elder sister Hina Jilani, HRCP 
director IA Rehman, Principal of the Cathedral School, Lahore, 
Cecil Chaudhary and activists of human rights organisations.

    
Addressing the memorial service on behalf of the Catholic Church, 
Father of Maryamabad (Sheikhupura), Emanuel Aasi, said that Dr 
Joseph was the voice of oppressed classes and in his whole life he 
rendered valuable services for the cause of human rights, rule of 
law, and struggled against black laws.
    
He termed the act of his suicide "a sacrifice for a noble cause to 
repeal the blasphemy laws."
    
HRCP chairman Asma Jahangir, in her brief address, said that Dr 
Joseph’s act of killing himself had "set the direction for struggle 
against black laws and will give a great boost to the movement 
against such inhuman laws."
    
She warned that if the Section 295-C of the blasphemy laws was not 
repealed, the country would suffer an irreparable loss.
    
Mr Prenzo Fratinl, Papal Nuncio (Papa-i-Safeer) in Pakistan read 
out a fax massage of Pop John Paul who said that the whole 
Christian world and the Catholic church were extremely sad over the 
sudden death of Dr John Joseph and were praying for his 
forgiveness.
    
The message further said that "Christians of the world express 
great concern over unfair treatment with Christians (in Pakistan) 
and unjust laws and resolve not to sit silent and provide all moral 
help to the Christians of Pakistan".
    
OUR SAHIWAL CORRESPONDENT ADDS: The body before its dispatch to 
Faisalabad was sent to the DHQ Hospital and an autopsy was carried 
out there.
    
The Punjab government has, meanwhile, ordered the constitution of 
three teams to hold a probe into the incident. The district 
administration and police have constituted separate teams for the 
probe.
    
Intelligence agencies, it is learnt, have started a separate probe 
whether it is not a conspiracy against the country or a murder.
    
Meanwhile, the international media has diverted attention to 
Sahiwal after suicide by Dr John Joseph.
    
Camera teams of BBC, Zee TV, CNN, Press Trust of India, and AFP 
came here on Thursday and Friday. Later, they left for Faisalabad.

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980509
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UK court refuses to stop Asif’s trial
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By Nasir Malick

LONDON, May 8: The London High Court has again rejected a request 
made by Asif Zardari’s lawyers for staying the proceedings being 
conducted by the Bow Street magistrates against the jailed Pakistan 
senator but allowed a judicial review to determine whether the 
British secretary of state has discretion to reconsider his 
decision of nominating a court for gathering evidence.
    
Justice Latham of the Royal Court of Justice (high court) on 
Thursday asked the British secretary of state to submit his reply 
on this issue within 14 days.
    
The honourable judge also directed the Bow Street magistrates to 
keep all the evidence gathered by him in the court custody till the 
final decision of the high court.
    
Mr Zardari’s lawyers had requested the court to stay the 
proceedings before the magistrate and order secretary of state to 
reconsider his decision of appointing a magistrate. They claimed 
that the home secretary had based his decision of nominating a 
court on false information provided to him by the Pakistan 
government. They also maintained that the home secretary has the 
discretion to reconsider his decision by de-nominating the court.
    
Justice Latham, while refusing to stay the proceedings being 
conducted by the Bow Street magistrats, i.e., gathering of evidence 
into the assets and properties being held by the Pakistan senator 
in the United Kingdom, agreed that the point raised by the 
petitioner that the home secretary has the discretion to review his 
earlier decision was arguable and allowed a judicial review.
    
He asked the home secretary to submit his reply on this legal point 
within 14 days when a divisional court (divisional bench) will hear 
the arguments and decide the matter.
    
The judge also directed the magistrate not to pass on the evidence 
to the home secretary till the decision of the judicial review by a 
divisional court.
    
During the last hearing on April 29, Justice Latham had asked 
lawyers representing Mr Zardari to approach the home secretary by 
submitting their representation and asking him to reconsider his 
decision. He had allowed them to return to the court within seven 
days if the home secretary refused their request.
    
When the home secretary was approached, he first refused to re-
consider his decision of nominating the court.
    
However, later he wrote another letter to Mr Zardari’s lawyers 
informing them that he would consider their representation before 
sending the evidence collected by the magistrate to the Pakistan 
government. He had also advised them to let the proceedings 
continue unhindered.
    
On Thursday, Mr Zardari’s lawyers informed the honourable judge 
about their correspondence with the home office and again requested 
him to stop the proceedings going on before the magistrate.
    
Justice Latham observed that the home secretary’s letter gave an 
impression as if he has the jurisdiction to reconsider his 
decision.
    
But the senior lawyer representing the government of Pakistan 
maintained that the home secretary has no jurisdiction to 
reconsider his decision, as the proceedings in this case were 
different from those carried in extradition cases where the home 
secretary has the power to withdraw his order.
    
He referred to two law cases where the divisional court had ruled 
that the home secretary has no jurisdiction to review his decision.
    
The respondent maintained that the home secretary had appointed the 
court on Dec 15 but the petitioner had been trying to delay these 
proceedings. He also pointed out that the magistrate conducting 
these proceedings had observed on many occasions that he did not 
see any injustice in continuing the proceedings. He requested that 
the magistrate should be allowed to continue gathering evidence.
    
At this stage Justice Latham asked him to brief the court about the 
procedure for transferring the evidence now being gathered by the 
magistrate.
    
The court was informed that the evidence gathered by such a court 
is submitted to the home secretary who in turn sends it to 
requesting state in the form of a deposition through diplomatic 
channels.
    
He said all the evidence gathered by the magistrate till now was in 
the custody of the court and added that so far no request has been 
received from Pakistan for transferring this evidence.
    
The Pakistan government lawyer told the court that the home 
secretary has already expressed his willingness to consider the 
representation of Mr Zardari’s lawyers before sending the evidence 
to the Pakistan government as such they should wait for that 
opportunity.
    
Opposing the request for staying the proceedings before the 
magistrate, he said the request was made under the UN convention 
and it was obligatory upon Britain to fulfil its international 
commitments. He said though there was no obligation on the home 
secretary to reconsider his decision, the latter was still willing 
to give them a chance by agreeing to look at their representation. 
Besides, he said, the material gathered here was required by 
Pakistan in a drug trafficking case registered against Mr Zardari.
    
The lawyer told the court that the magistrate had even excluded the 
police from making any inquiry on the request of the petitioner and 
now the witnesses were being directly called to the court to submit 
their evidence.
    
When Justice Latham asked him whether the proceedings before the 
magistrate would complete by June, the GOP lawyer replied in the 
positive.
    
The honourable judge then asked Mr Zardari’s lawyer what he wanted 
from the court.
 
Submitting his arguments, he said that at first the magistrate 
should be stopped from gathering evidence. He said the evidence 
being gathered by the magistrate was being leaked to the Pakistan 
government. Without naming Ehtesab cell member Wasim Afzal, who is 
regularly attending the proceedings at the magistrate’s court, he 
said a representative of the Pakistan government was attending 
these proceedings and passing on the highly confidential 
information.

Besides, he maintained, the authorities in Pakistan have not yet 
completed investigations against Mr Zardari in the drug trafficking 
case so the proceedings in a British court on that basis were 
unjustified.
    
The Pakistan government lawyer intervened at this stage and said 
there had been only instance of leak of information. Even that 
information, which was published in a Pakistan newspaper, he said, 
was not an accurate information. He said that after that incident 
the magistrate had taken a serious view and asked both sides not to 
divulge any information to anyone outside the courtroom and since 
then there had been no leak. He also submitted that if the 
proceedings were stayed at this stage, the schedule of calling the 
witnesses would be disturbed and further delay the proceedings. He 
said it was not an appropriate case of stay and requested the court 
to "look into reasons why the stay is being sought."
    
He said the proceedings before the magistrate were not of criminal 
nature as a criminal court passes penalty at the end of hearing 
whereas in this case the magistrate would only pass on the evidence 
to the home secretary. "It (the court) does not have characteristic 
of a criminal court as it cannot pass on penalty," he submitted
    
But Mr Zardari’s lawyer said he feared that there would be further 
leaks of information. The honourable judge said he could understand 
his concern. "I understand the concern of those standing on behalf 
of the applicant," Justice Latham said and directed the magistrate 
to retain all the evidence gathered by him should be retained by 
the lower court till the decision on the judicial review. "All 
evidence obtained during the course of hearing should remain 
confidential," he ordered.
    
The honourable judge repeated his last ruling that the magistrate 
was proper in conducting the proceedings and was entitled to 
proceed.
    
"What is challenged is the decision of the secretary of state not 
to reconsider his earlier decision of nominating the court," the 
judge observed and asked the home secretary to submit his reply on 
this legal point within 14 days.
    
The divisional court is likely to hear the arguments on one point 
in the last week of this month or early June.
    
By that time, the Bow Street magistrate will almost complete the 
gathering of evidence. The magistrate is calling the witnesses day-
to-day.
    
Even on Wednesday he continued the hearing, and one witness deposed 
his evidence, On Friday another witness will provide evidence while 
three more will appear on Monday.
    
Mr Zardari’s friend, Javed Pasha, has already given evidence while 
his wife has yet to appear before the court. Most of the witnesses 
are officials of those British banks where Mr Zardari had been 
maintaining his accounts.
    
The proceedings are being held in camera and the magistrate has 
strictly warned both sides not to divulge any information regarding 
these proceedings to anyone.
    
Lawyers familiar with such kind of proceedings say that normally 
the witness hand over the documents and affirm their authenticity 
before the court. In some cases they also agree to confirm the 
authenticity of these documents in any other court of law.
    
So if the home secretary passes the evidence to Pakistan 
government, these bank officials can be called in Pakistan courts 
to reaffirm their authenticity as required under Qanoon-i-Shahadat 
(Law of Evidence).

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980506
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Court adjourns appeal hearing on updated voters lists
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Shujaat Ali Khan
    
LAHORE, May 5: The hearing of an appeal against the holding of May 
20 local council elections on the basis of updated voters' lists 
was on Tuesday adjourned till Friday without any interim order.
    
A Lahore High Court division bench, comprising Justice Ihsanul Haq 
Chaudhry and Justice Faqir Muhammad Khokhar, heard arguments in the 
absence of a copy of the impugned judgment, which was announced by 
Justice Falak Sher on April 30, but is still to be reduced to 
writing. While an appeal may be entertained without a copy of the 
decision it challenges, it cannot be disposed of without one.
    
Justice Ihsanul Haq, however, hoped that the order would be 
available when the bench resumes hearing on Friday morning.
    
The proceedings will conclude by tea-break followed by a decision. 
Since an order on the suspension of the impugned verdict would have 
practically disposed of the entire case, the appeal is proceeding 
without a formal admission order and will be decided by a single 
pronouncement.
    
A copy of Justice Amir Alam Khan's judgment striking down the 
nominated panchayat tier and invalidating several provisions of the 
Punjab Local Councils Ordinance is also awaited. There will be no 
local government in rural areas to perform the vital functions 
assigned to union and markaz councils unless the judgment is 
reversed in appeal or the law is amended in accordance with it.
    
The bench, hearing the Punjab government's appeal against Justice 
Falak Sher's judgment, rejected on Tuesday Advocate- General Khwaja 
Muhammad Sharif's plea for a direction to the Punjab Local Councils 
Election Authority to extend the date for withdrawal of 
candidature, which expired on May 4, till May 12. There was 
confusion among the candidates because of the uncertainty created 
by the pending proceedings, the AG said. 

Appearing for Tehrik-i-Insaaf leader Imran Khan, the petitioner-
respondent in the case who has been seeking electoral rolls' 
preparation on the basis of a new census since before the February 
1997 general election, Advocate Farooq Amjad Mir said the extension 
was being sought to get more pro-government candidates elected 
unopposed.
    
ADVOCATE-GENERAL: Advocate-General Khwaja Sharif earlier stated 
that, according to a local government department report, the census 
organization had shown its inability to compile and furnish the 
population figures before one year and a half. The census forms 
were quite comprehensive and contained more information than 
gathered ever before. The local bodies were dissolved in 1993 and 
have been non-existent since. The last local bodies elections were 
held in 1991.

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980506
-------------------------------------------------------------------
Balochistan seeks Rs2.5bn loan for ADP
-------------------------------------------------------------------
Correspondent
   
QUETTA, May 5: The Balochistan government has sought a loan of 
Rs2.5 billion for its annual development programme (ADP) for the 
next financial year.
    
"If this loan is not provided to the province by the federal 
government, preparation of next year's budget will be very 
difficult for the provincial government", said Chief Minister 
Sardar Akhtar Mengal while talking to newsmen here on Tuesday at 
his assembly chamber.
    
He said Balochistan was facing a serious financial crisis for the 
last 18 months as the federal government had not been providing 
funds commensurate to its needs.
    
He said the provincial government had approached the federal 
government at all levels for financial assistance, but failed to 
get required funds and due share in national resources.
    
The chief minister said his government had now asked the federal 
government to provide a loan of Rs 2.5 billion for the 
implementation of the provincial annual development programme.
    
He said after getting this loan, the Balochistan government would 
not be in a position to present the budget for 1998-99 in June.
    
Sardar Mengal said the centre had allocated nothing for Balochistan 
in its Public Sector Development Programme (PSDP) for next year.
    
Replying to a question, the chief minister said his government 
wanted to resolve differences with the federal government through 
negotiations. He denied that Balochistan had any plan to move a 
court of law in this regard.
    
He said a strong delegation of all parties would be sent to 
Islamabad to plead the province's case before the centre.
    
To a question about the alleged involvement of a minister of his 
cabinet in the kidnapping of the principal of St Francis Grammar 
School, he said the high court itself had taken a notice of the 
incident and the chief justice had expressed satisfaction over 
steps taken by the provincial government.
    
He said the complainant had withdrawn his complaint, saying that he 
did not want legal action against anybody.
    
About differences with Balochistan PML over the allotment of 
portfolios and new ministries, the chief minister said these issues 
would be resolved at a meeting in Islamabad on Wednesday.
    
When asked about a possibility of a no-trust motion against the 
speaker, the chief minister said a decision would be made after 
taking all parliamentary groups into confidence.

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980504
-------------------------------------------------------------------
Altaf demands more provinces
-------------------------------------------------------------------
Reporter

KARACHI, May 3: The chief of Muttahida Qaumi Movement (MQM), Mr 
Altaf Hussain, said on Saturday the creation of new provinces and 
administrative units enjoying greater autonomy was essential to the 
survival and stability of the country.
    
Addressing Graduate Forum in Hyderabad late in the night, Mr 
Hussain demanded that all nationalities should be given equal 
rights and they should be given representation in the government 
and other walks of life on the basis of their population ratio.
    
"The country will not become weak by creating new provinces or 
administrative units. Instead it will strengthen Pakistan," said Mr 
Hussain.
    
He said it was a need of the hour that rights of all nationalities 
were recognized and they were provided justice.
    
The MQM chief dwelt at length on religion, nation and 
nationalities. He observed that religion could bring together 
various linguistic units closer, but it cannot change identity of 
anyone of them.
    
He said although Pakistan was created in the name of Islam, various 
component units were not given rights and owing to this, the people 
of erstwhile East Pakistan felt alienated.
    
He said Bengalis had accepted 50% parity, but they were not given 
representation in the bureaucracy and affairs of the government.
    
When they (Bengalis) launched a struggle, "instead of giving them 
their rights they were subjected to the worst kind of military 
action and from nationality they transformed into a nation and a 
country created in the name of Islam was divided," said Altaf 
Hussain.
    
The MQM chief regretted that the rulers had not learnt lessons from 
past mistakes and small nationalities were subjected to brute use 
of state power.
    
He demanded that all "nationalities should be given their due share 
and rights in bureaucracy, armed forces and other organs of the 
state."
    
He said he foresaw "serious consequences if all nationalities are 
not treated equally".
    
Senator Jameeluddin Aali, Dr Farman Fatehpuri and Mr Mohsin Bhopali 
were among the participants.

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980505
-------------------------------------------------------------------
Dam may be considered if it is a popular demand: PM
-------------------------------------------------------------------
Bureau Report
    
GANDAF (Swabi), May 4: Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif said here on 
Monday that he would "consider" the construction of Kalabagh dam 
once he was satisfied that it was a popular demand.
    
When asked as to why he refrained from responding to a couple of 
speeches demanding construction of the dam (by NWFP Chief Minister 
Sardar Mahtab and the Federal Minister for Power, Raja Nadir 
Pervez), the prime minister said he would say something when it was 
required.
    
In a brief chat with newsmen after performing the ground-breaking 
of Pehur High Level Canal (PHLC), the premier denied there was any 
confusion over the formation of Khidmat committees or there was any 
complaint about inclusion of corrupt, inept or inefficient persons 
on these committees.
    
When asked as to what action the government intended to take 
against the Independent Power Projects, the prime minister said "we 
will place the inquiry report (which is almost ready) about them 
before the nation".
    
He, however, did not agree with a contention that the government 
was involved in witch-hunting or victimizing these independent 
power project owners and said "in spite of the efforts of some 
newspapers which are trying to bail these companies out, they 
cannot be termed innocent".
    
He alleged that the IPPs involved in kickbacks had certainly set 
aside a "certain amount for a certain newspaper which is trying to 
clear them of charges."
    
During the speeches by Mr Nawaz Sharif and other dignitaries, a 
group of people raised slogans in favour of the Kalabagh dam. But 
neither the premier nor any of the speakers responded to the 
slogan-mongering.
    
It appeared that the said group of youngsters was planted under a 
set plan for chanting slogans in certain direction and to attract 
the attention of prime minister. Their slogans also included 
demands of restoration of special incentives for the Gadoon Amazai 
Industrial Estate (GAIE).

 BUSINESS & ECONOMY
980505
-------------------------------------------------------------------
IMF relaxes budget deficit criteria
-------------------------------------------------------------------
Correspondent
    
KARACHI, May 4: The International Monetary Fund (IMF) had relaxed 
the budget deficit criteria for the current fiscal year and now 
Pakistan had to meet budget deficit target in absolute terms, which 
was Rs148 billion, official sources said.
    
A tough budget deficit target of 5.5 per cent of the GDP was set by 
the IMF for fiscal 1997-98, which was to be achieved with the GDP 
growth rate of 6 per cent and by containing expenditures and 
encouraging tax compliance by lowering the tax rates.
    
Sources said now with lower than the targetted GDP growth, 
reduction of budget deficit in relative terms was not possible for 
the government. And if deficit was measured in terms of the GDP, it 
would give inflated figure.
    
"Realizing slower than the targetted growth and the depressed 
revenues due to fall in dutiable imports and lack of industrial 
revival, the IMF came up with more realistic criteria", sources 
added.
    
Government had set budget deficit target of 5 per cent of the GDP 
for 1997-98 against last year's 6.2 per cent. But with major 
shortfall in tax revenues, and slower growth forecast, analysts 
believe, it wont be less than 6 per cent of the GDP. "This also 
showed that the IMF would not let Pakistan default on payments by 
withholding emergency funds, but may allow for some deviation from 
fiscal targets", sources said.
    
"With this absolute target, now they had very little space to 
manoeuvre with deficit figure at the time of presenting budget", 
commented an analyst. Government gives provisional figures of the 
GDP growth and deficit while releasing the Economic Survey before 
the annual budget, which are quite different from the actual 
figures, given in the State Bank's Annual Report.
    
But the sources said government earnings from development 
surcharges for petroleum products, which were expected to touch Rs 
41 billion at the end of 1997-98, would partially offset shortfall 
in tax revenues.

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980506
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PR to be split into 3 core businesses before privatization
-------------------------------------------------------------------
Raja Zulfikar
    
ISLAMABAD, May 5: The Government proposes to create three core 
businesses,- infrastructure, freight and passenger with their own 
assets, liabilities and labour force- to be incorporated under 
Companies Ordinance before privatization of railways.
    
Informed sources told Dawn a fresh railway policy prepared on the 
basis of recommendations of a Task Force on Railway has been 
approved by the Prime Minister.
    
The main objective of the new policy is to create a modern and 
competitive rail system, attract private investment, and develop 
legislative and regulatory environment for providing a level 
playing field for fair competition. The policy, in addition, seeks 
to reduce government fiscal burden and ensure safety and 
environmental compliance.
    
The Action Plan envisages privatization of Pakistan Railways and 
opening the sector to private entrepreneurs. The shift in the 
policy demands formal enunciation of a Railway Policy as a 
declaration of the government's intent and a public commitment to 
facilitate private investment in Railway sub-sector.
    
It further aims at providing equal opportunity to all components of 
transport sector and privatize the existing railway system. The 
policy has been prepared by the Privatization Commission (PC) in 
consultation with the Ministry of Railways.
    
Informed sources said the policy suggests different ways to achieve 
the objectives set in the document. Besides calling for separation 
of the ministry and the Railway Board, it has suggested 
establishment of a new Railway Board in Lahore with representation 
from the private sector.
    
The Ministry and the Board, under the envisaged plan, would oversee 
privatization of the Pakistan Railways. Ultimately, the residual 
functions would be merged with the ministry of Communications.
    
Suggested in the policy are certain amendments of Railway Act and 
other related legislation to facilitate reforms and privatization. 
To oversee rail services, a regulatory body will be established.
    
The policy calls for separation of core and non-core 
activities/assets. The non-core assets/activities include welfare 
activities such as schools and hospitals and the like, factories, 
and workshops.
    
Of the other means to achieve the set objectives, one is that track 
access agreements for freight and passenger will be developed 
alongwith commercial contracts for the Defence Department and other 
organisations to deal with the operating companies.
    
Privatization of the Core businesses will be done by the PC through 
reputed financial advisors, selected through open and competitive 
process. Non-core assets will be sold through PC according to 
established procedures.
    
An agency, which may be designated as Resettlement Authority will 
be created to deal with liabilities, surplus labour, ancillary 
services and residual assets including surplus land.
    
The Open Access Policy, already approved by the government, will 
still be valid under the new scenario, subject to provisions of the 
new Investment Policy, to permit competition.

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980507
-------------------------------------------------------------------
GST on agenda of CBR Policy Board
-------------------------------------------------------------------
Ihtashamul Haque
    
ISLAMABAD, May 6: Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif will chair the first 
meeting of the Policy Board of the Central Board of Revenue (CBR) 
here on May 14 to approve a number of new measures, including the 
netting of 200,000 new tax-payers by December this year.
    
Informed sources said here on Wednesday that the prime minister, 
who is the chairman of the Policy Board, will also approve the idea 
of imposing General Sales Tax (GST) on the basis of income from the 
next financial year. Currently 3 per cent GST was being recovered 
on the basis of flat rates as was demanded by various traders' 
bodies.
    
However, sources said that the year 1998-99 will witness the levy 
of GST on the basis of income and that no opposition whatsoever by 
the traders and businessmen will be tolerated. The CBR had set a 
target of Rs 2.4 billion for the collection of GST during the 
current financial year by allowing the businessmen to pay on the 
basis of flat rates.
    
The government now anticipates to recover substantial amount of GST 
on the basis of the income during the next financial year.
    
Sources said that the increase of 200,000 new tax-payers would also 
help significantly enhance the revenue collection during 1998-99. 
According to the latest estimates of the CBR, the number of tax-
payers currently stands at 1.4 million.
    
"A new strategy will be approved during the first meeting of the 
newly created Policy Board to ensure the annual collection of 
revenue targets", said an official.
    
The Policy Board, whose vice chairman is Minister for Finance 
Senator Sartaj Aziz, would also discuss and approve the demand of 
the new chairman CBR to appoint 30 to 40 people from the private 
sector. The Establishment Division is resisting the appointment of 
experts from the private sector on higher salaries. 
    
The overall restructuring plan of the CBR would also come up for 
detailed discussion and approval by the Policy Board in the light 
of the recommendations of the Minister for Law Khalid Anwar. He is 
believed to have supported the point of view of Moeenuddin Khan 
that experts from the private sector should be hired and inducted 
in the CBR so that its overall performance could be improved in a 
big way.
    
The conceptional plan for restructuring of the CBR has already been 
approved by the prime minister. Now bit by bit discussion on every 
item will be held on May 14 to formally approve the implementation 
on the restructuring plan.

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980507
-------------------------------------------------------------------
Registration of importers under ST not picking up
-------------------------------------------------------------------
Ikram Hoti
    
ISLAMABAD, May 6: Registration of importers under the Sales Tax Act 
has not picked up even after the at-source deduction of the tax 
with 3% fine and withdrawal of facility of depositing fixed Sales 
Tax by commercial importers of industrial raw materials, components 
and sub-components.
    
The Central Board of Revenue (CBR) had ordered deduction of ST with 
fine about six months ago, to which importers' associations had 
protested, and the Ministry of Finance had issued SRO 1 (I)/98, of 
Jan 1, 1998, rescinding the ministry's notification No 675 (I)/97 
of Aug 29, 1997, which allowed the facility of ST deposit.
    
The rescinded SRO said: The federal government is pleased to direct 
that the commercial importers engaged in making taxable supplies of 
industrial raw materials, components and sub-components and goods 
other than consumer goods and consumer durables, excluding the mild 
steel products and their raw materials as specified in this 
ministry's notification NO SRO 511 (I)/97 dated July 5, 1997, and 
SRO 512 (I)/97 of same date, who do not register under Sec 14 of 
the Sales Tax Act, 1990, shall pay fixed tax at the rate of three 
percent of the value thereof in addition to the sales tax payable 
thereon under clause (b) of the sub-sec (1) of sec 3 of the Sales 
Tax Act, 1990, at the time of importation of such industrial raw 
materials, components and sub-components, and goods other than 
consumer goods and durables.
    
The CBR has been pointing out to the government that not more than 
3,000 importers had registered their businesses with the ST 
collectorates, while the registration drive had almost completely 
been ineffective in the sense that most importers said they were 
not importing anything. They were referring to the slump in the 
local market and a near-jam situation on the production lines 
inland, and argued that there was little to be imported, and hence 
no need of getting registered.
    
The CBR, on the other hand, has been presenting its case for 
registration of importers with the plea that a large chunk of the 
ST money due to the national exchequer is being evaded for non-
registration of importers, and about one-third of the business 
concerns and traders were not being brought to the documentation 
ledgers only due to this lapse.

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980509
-------------------------------------------------------------------
Punjab to get Rs5bn for ADP
-------------------------------------------------------------------
By Shaukat Ali

LAHORE, May 8: Islamabad is believed to have assured to give about 
Rs5 billion to the Punjab for its Annual Development Programme for 
1998-99. 
     
The federal government is also understood to have approved Punjab’s 
demand to enhance its ADP size by around 33 per cent during the 
coming financial year over the present fiscal. 
     
Punjab is most likely to set aside Rs18.3 billion for its annual 
development programme in its budget for 1998-99. The province was 
allowed an ADP of Rs13.34 billion by the centre for the ongoing 
financial year. 
     
Informed sources said that the federal government was ‘much 
pleased’ with the performance of the largest province as far 
utilization of the available development funds was concerned during 
1997-98. Almost 32 per cent of the development funds during the 
coming year will be spent in education and health sectors. 
     
The government has decided to utilize around 60 per cent of the 
funds on the completion of the ongoing schemes while the rest would 
be spent on initiating new development projects. 
     
It is understood that the provincial government will spent around 
Rs4.2 billion on building infrastructure facilities including 
inter-city roads and bridges besides other physical planning 
projects. 
     
The government has also planned to utilize another Rs2.21 billion 
on various schemes to boost agricultural activities in the province 
in the coming year. 

      
The government is considering to initiate a total of 1,340 new 
development schemes during 1998-99.

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980509
-------------------------------------------------------------------
Tea prices cut by Rs15-20 per kg
-------------------------------------------------------------------
By Aamir Shafaat Khan

KARACHI, May 8: Blended tea packers have reduced the prices by Rs 
15-20 per kg following the 20 per cent cut in import duties. The 
new rates will become effective from May 9 (Saturday).
    
However, officials in the Lever Brothers Pakistan Ltd and Ispahani 
Tea Ltd told Dawn that the companies have made reductions of its 
various brands from Friday.
    
He said the 250gm packet of Lipton’s yellow label tea is available 
at Rs 60 compared to previous price of Rs 65. 
    
Besides, the company has also decreased the prices of its other 
brands.
    
Similarly, the price of 250gm of Ispahani tea has reduced to Rs 60 
compared to Rs 65, an official confirmed on Friday.
    
A spokesman of the Karachi Retail Grocers Group (KRGG) said that 
the consumers will be able to get the actual benefit from Saturday 
when the fresh supply will arrive in the morning.
    
"We had already stopped purchasing tea from the companies as their 
distributors had already informed the reduction a week back," he 
said adding "even we are also now insisting consumers to cash the 
opportunity from Saturday."
    
Meanwhile, an official in the Kohinoor Tea Company said that the 
company is reducing the prices from Saturday. 
     
He added that its Dust 250gm packet is now available at Rs 53 
compared to Rs 59 while its Danedar 200gm is now quoted at Rs 47 as 
against Rs 50.
    
Meanwhile, an official in the Pakistan Tea Association (PTA) 
forecasts more price cuts after two months as the orders for July’s 
incoming shipments are now being booked at $2.20-2.40 per kg 
compared to February’s global rate of $3.50 per kg.
    
Prior to this, the prices of loose imported tea have already fallen 
in the markets a month back by Rs 25-30 per kg depending on the 
quality.
    
However, the price fall by the blenders does not reflect the actual 
impact of the 20 per cent cut on import duty (from 45 to 25 per 
cent).
    
But a PTA official said that some left over stocks of imported teas 
are still coming at prices of $3.50 per kg which were agreed by the 
local blenders in February.

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980507
-------------------------------------------------------------------
Haider suggests amendment to banking cos ord
-------------------------------------------------------------------
Faraz Hashmi
    
ISLAMABAD, May 6: PPP Senator Iqbal Haider has suggested an 
amendment in the Banking Companies Ordinance, 1962, making it 
obligatory for the State Bank to publish on biannual basis the list 
of persons who had obtained loans from the nationalised commercial 
banks (NCBs) and development financial institutions (DFIs).
    
The PPP senator has already moved a bill to this effect along with 
seven other bills seeking amendments in various other laws.

    
The amendment in Banking Companies Ordinance, 1962, is aimed at 
ensuring that list of defaulters in repayment of loans is issued 
compulsorily by the SBP after every six months. Regular publication 
of this list would help in identifying the defaulters and 
containing the menace of defaults in repayment of loans as well as 
in recovery of the same, he explained in the statement of objects 
and reasons of the bill.
    
He had also sought an amendment in Income Tax Ordinance, 1979. The 
amendment called for publication of a directory by the Central 
Board of Revenue of all the income tax payers in the country.
    
The federal government had decided to publish a directory of all 
income tax payers every year but it was actually published only 
once and despite repeated commitments the directory was not 
published regularly, he said.
    
The proposed amendment would ensure that CBR should publish the 
directory of all income tax payers every year without any delay or 
default.
    
Publication of such a directory would have a positive impact and 
help in discouraging and containing the culture of tax defaulting 
and evasion in the country.
    
The former law minister, through another bill, had sought amendment 
in Companies Ordinance, 1984. Through this amendment he wanted that 
the directors of all the public limited companies should file 
declarations:
    
a) That no loan, obtained from any bank, financial institution, 
cooperative society or corporate body, in his own name or in the 
name of his spouse or dependent children or dependent parents or 
any business concern mainly owned by the aforesaid, remain unpaid 
for more than one year from the due date.
    
b) That he, his spouse or dependent children or dependent parents 
or a business concern, have not made any default in payment of 
taxes for over six months.
    
c) That he, his spouse or dependent children or dependent parents 
or a business concern have not made default in payment of 
government dues and utility expenses, including telephone, 
electricity, gas and water charges for over six months;
    
d) A statement specifying his educational qualification, 
occupation, national identity card number and national tax number 
if any;
    
e) a statement of assets and liabilities of his own, spouse and 
dependents on the prescribed form as on the preceding 30th day of 
June;
    
f) a statement specifying income tax, wealth tax paid by him during 
last three assessment years and where applicable land revenue paid 
by him during the last two financial years.
    
He also sought lifting of legal restrictions on donations by any 
company to the political parties. He said the Companies Ordinance, 
1984 was introduced during the Martial Law when political parties 
and their activities were not allowed, hence it contained a 
prohibition in the ordinance regarding making contributions to the 
funds of political parties.

Such a prohibition should not be tolerated in a democratic society 
therefore business community and companies should be allowed if 
they so desire to donate funds to political parties freely and 
openly to promote transparency and clean politics in the country, 
he added.

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980505
-------------------------------------------------------------------
NCBs to shut 464 more branches 
-------------------------------------------------------------------
Mohiuddin Aazim
    
KARACHI, May 4: The visiting World Bank team observed here on 
Monday that the state-run banks needed to pursue their 
restructuring plans with more emphasis on getting prepared for 
privatisation.
    
The observation was made during a meeting the team held with the 
representatives of the state-run National Bank, Habib Bank, United 
Bank and partly-privatized Muslim Commercial Bank and Allied Bank.
    
The four-member team headed by Vice President Ms Mieko Nishimizu 
also held two other sessions  one with the State Bank officials 
and the other with representatives of non-bank financial 
institutions and leaders of the trade and industry.
    
"The World Bank team was told that the three state-run banks 
together have closed down more than 488 branches and some 464 more 
branches were being closed," a source privy to the meeting said.
    
He said the representatives of National Bank and United Bank told 
the team that they had closed down 102 and 136 branches 
respectively. The representative of NBP said the bank planned to 
close down or merge another 100 branches and the representative of 
UBL said the bank was in the process of closing 164 more branches. 
"Habib Bank has already closed down 250 branches and plans to pull 
down the shutters of 200 more," the source said.
    
Another source privy to the meeting said the World Bank team asked 
the representatives of the five major banks about the best possibly 
way of privatizing the state-run banks. "The bankers told them that 
privatization of state-run banks in piece meals may not be 
beneficial. They rather supported the idea of privatizing each bank 
in one go."
    
He said the meeting discussed two optionsprivatizing the overseas 
branch networks of the state-run banks in the first phase and 
retaining the rest to be sold later onand privatizing each bank in 
one go. "The consensus was that if the first option is exercised 
privatizing the local assets of the banks would be very difficult." 
    
The government has set June 30 as the deadline for privatizing the 
banks but there are indications the task may be delayed. "The World 
Bank team observed that efforts should be initiated for timely 
privatization of the banks," one of the sources said.
    
The source said the World Bank team did ask the bankers what impact 
the banking sector reforms had on lending rates and cost of 
financial intermediation. "They were told that NBP had cut its 
lending rates from 1.9-5.8 per cent and HBL had reduced its lending 
rates by a lower percentage whereas UBL had not been able to make 
any significant cut."
    
He said the team was further told that the state-run banks had also 
managed to cut their cost of financial intermediation by 0.5-0.7 
per cent. The members of the team were of the opinion that a 
further reduction in the cost of financial intermediation was 
desirable.
    
Sources privy to the meeting said the World Bank team showed its 
concern over slow pace of recovery of stuck-up loans adding the 
bankers told the team that low number of high court judges 
available for hearing default cases and non-execution of decrees 
obtained against the defaulters had slowed recovery of bad loans.
    
"The leader of the team observed Pakistan is still a textile 
dependent country and it has made no obvious change in its 
industrial structure over last 10 years," a source close to the 
meeting told Dawn. 
     
He said the World Bank team also noted with concern the growing 
pessimism among the business community about the progress of the 
economy. "This pessimism is not a good thing. It is not a good 
signal," the source quoted the team leader as having said.

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980504
-------------------------------------------------------------------
No future for industry in NWFP
-------------------------------------------------------------------
Ahmad Hassan

IT SEEMS that the future of industrialization in the NWFP, at least 
in the present circumstances is bleak and no serious effort is 
underway to stop the rot. The provincial government under Sardar 
Mahtab Ahmed Khan has done nothing except make promises.
    
A number of industrial estates established in the past few years in 
the NWFP have closed down as more than 80 per cent of the 
industrial units in the NWFP are on the sick list.
    
The Gadoon Amazai Industrial Estate has become a graveyard of 
industry, while Hattar, the second most successful industrial area 
is also on verge of collapse.
    
Most entrepreneurs at Gadoon have shifted out of sheer frustration. 
Attracted by heavy incentives in 1989, they were stunned when the 
government withdrew incentives in 1991, three years ahead of 
schedule. 
     
The situation is so bleak that almost daily a factory closes down 
due to inability of the owners to pay workers' wages and fuel 
bills.
    
The industrialists it seems, have been attracted by the incentives 
provided by Dubai. A number of them are reported to have shifted 
there as not only is Dubai providing a complete tax holiday, but 
security and protection of life and capital is also far superior 
than this difficult terrain.
    
In these circumstances, no government initiative to put the 
province on road to industrialisation can be successful.
    
An industrialist at Gadoon told this scribe that there is no future 
for any export processing zone as envisaged by the government, 
unless it undertakes drastic measures including a tax holiday.
    
The government's stand is that incentives given to any industrial 
estate will only be misused. Industrialists deny this accusation 
and say that some entrepreneurs may have taken undue advantage, but 
after sufficient checks were introduced, misuse has stopped.
    
A committee was constituted by the NWFP government a few months 
back. It comprised SDA officials and elected members of the 
provincial assembly from Gadoon area which recommended that Gadoon 
Estate be given a 25 per cent rebate on electricity from a 
retrospective date so that the closed factories can be reopened. It 
also recommended sales tax exemption to make its products 
competitive in the local market.
    
The chief minister who had earlier promised industrialists of the 
estate that he would represent them in talks with the federal 
government over a minimum possible incentives package had a number 
of meetings with a delegation of the estate. To gain time, the 
chief minister asked for the constitution of another committee with 
the task of preparing a report about the possibility of more 
incentives for the estate.
    
This committee which assembled at the office of the Sarhad 
Development Authority on April 27 failed to come up with any 
proposals and adjourned to meet at a later date.
    
Meanwhile, the people in the poppy growing Gandaf area have 
threatened that if the industrial estate fails to provide the local 
people with promised quota of employment, they would revert to 
cultivating poppy.
    
A letter written to the president of Gadoon Chamber of Industry and 
Commerce recently, by the 'Islahi jirga' of Gandaf demanded the 
implementation of the employment quota agreement or face dire 
consequences.
    
This development has further added to problems of the entrepreneurs 
who have asked the administration to provide security to them and 
their employees who have been brought from Punjab. The 
industrialists say that the quota condition can only be fulfilled 
if the government restores the incentives it had promised at the 
time of setting up of this estate.
The ugly face of hatred

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980506
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Banks to finance housing projects
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Mohiuddin Aazim
    
KARACHI, May 5: The State Bank of Pakistan (SBP) on Tuesday allowed 
commercial banks to extend loans for housing projects.
    
"Commercial banks are permitted to advance loans for housing 
projects like other industrial and commercial projects," said a SBP 
circular issued on Tuesday.
    
"Banks are allowed to provide mortgage loans keeping in view the 
requirement of prudence in lending and they can also float long 
term bonds at market rates."
    
"The State Bank is also in the process of opening a refinance 
window for long-term funds from multilateral agencies," the 
circular added.
    
Senior bankers reached by Dawn said the decision would help the 
banks expand their business operations and create another lending 
avenue. "But banks would be very selective in advancing housing 
loans on their own," said senior executive of a leading bank. He 
said extending long-term housing loans would be a problem for the 
banks because their ability to raise matching deposits is very 
limited. The bankers said if the proposed refinance window is set 
up it would help the banks overcome this problem.
    
Bankers say a recession in the economy and complication in credit 
allocation policies have left very limited avenues open for lending 
whereas businessmen complain they do not get sufficient funding 
from the banks.
    
They further say that the SBP decision allowing the banks to float 
long-term bonds would hardly help them raise matching deposits for 
extending housing loans in the prevailing market situation.
    
"The government is a major competitor of the banks both in short-
term and long-term debt market," said senior executive of a foreign 
bank. "The recent withdrawal of tax exemption on term finance 
certificates has marred whatever scope was left for launching long-
term debt instruments," the banker lamented.
    
Bankers say even if some banks venture into the business of long-
term bonds for raising funds to finance housing loans the high cost 
of funds would make these loans expensive thereby limiting the 
scope of the scheme.
    
"The only possible way out is that multilateral agencies pour in 
enough funds for housing finance and the State Bank channelize the 
same through its refinance scheme," said executive of a state -run 
bank. "It is to be seen when this scenario would emerge but 
indications are that inflow of multilateral funds would not only be 
limited but also expensive."
    
"Besides housing finance is a high risk area," the banker said 
meaning that providing mortgage loans for housing projects would 
not be simple. Prudent assessment of property value is not an easy 
taskand more importantly taking legal action in case of loans 
extended against collaterals comprising real assets is difficult.
    
Bankers said apparently the decision of allowing the banks to 
advance housing finance has spurred from the growing number of the 
homelessboth in urban as well as in rural areas. They say that the 
decision is also seemingly aimed at opening a new avenue for 
lending.
    
Bankers say the decision would meet its objectives only if the 
development of long-term debt market is facilitated and a system is 
put in place to take care of the risks involved in real estate 
mortgages.
    
The demand for housing finance is pretty high particularly in urban 
centres because there is only one housing finance institution in 
the public sector by the name of House Building Finance 
Corporation. The interest of the private sector in this area has 
been limited.
    
Builders say the decision allowing the banks to extend housing 
finance would lead to appreciation of real assets value thereby 
contributing toward overall revival of economic activities.

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980509
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Stocks rise on renewed foreign buying
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By Our Staff Reporter

KARACHI, May 8: Stock prices rose further on Friday as leading 
shares came in for active follow-up support under the lead of PTCL 
at the lower levels aided largely by revival of foreign buying.
    
Although pent-up demand owing to two closures on account of 
Muharram figured prominently, it was relative strength of the PTCL 
which took the entire market along with in the plus column for the 
second session.
    
PTCL alone accounted for more than a half of the total volume as 
buyers were not inclined to miss the opportunity at the prevailing 
price, dealers said.
    
Heavy buying in the shares of ALICO followed by news that its 
directors have decided to raise its authorized capital from the 
existing Rs 200 million to Rs 500 million after issuing 50 million 
shares of Rs 10 each was said to be another contributory supporting 
factor. It was traded higher by Rs 7.90 during the last two 
sessions on volume of about 0.100 million shares.
    
On the other hand, the other trendsetter, Hub-Power, did not 
respond to its technically-oversold position and finished further 
shaded. The unresolved issue of power tariff cut could erode value 
further in the coming session, they added.
    
The KSE 100-share index recovered another 8.16 points at 1,551.91 
as compared to 1,543.75 on Tuesday as some of the base shares 
finished with an extended gain under the lead of PSO, ICI Pakistan 
and PTCL.
    
The total market capitalization also posted a fresh rise of Rs 
2.231 billion at Rs 428.900 billion as compared to Rs 426.669 
billion on Tuesday, recovering about Rs 5 billion during the last 
two sessions.
    
Analysts said there was no major change in the background news on 
the corporate or economic fronts from where the market could derive 
its current strength and that too at the weekend session, excepting 
probably its technical demands.
    
Good interim dividend by the Investment Corporation of Pakistan 
(ICP), ranging from 10% to 50% on its 20 mutual funds, did evoke 
good interest in its portfolio shares and that could be one of the 
factors behind the market’s improved performance during the last 
two sessions, they added.
    
However, lower than market expectations interim (25%) in ICP 
S.E.M.F, in which foreign investors have a big stake, did worry 
investors as it might not match its previous record of 100% 
dividend as the final might be that higher, some floor brokers 
fear.
    
"The revival of strong selective support in the pivotals does buoy 
them on the perception that a strong rally could be built-up on the 
strength of base shares in the coming sessions," they said.
    
Trading volume fell to 34.025 million shares from the previous 41 
million shares, while gainers maintained a strong lead over the 
losers at 60 to 46 with 50 shares holding on to the last levels.
 
Big gainers were led by some inactive shares on strong support with 
Nestle Milkpak, Al-Ghazi Tractors, 19th and 9th ICP, New Jubilee 
Insurance and ALICO being the top gainers, rising by Rs 3 to Rs 6.
    
They were followed by Union Leasing, N. P. Spinning, Jubilee 
Spinning, BOC Pakistan, Bawany Air Products, Century Paper and 
Goodluck Industries, rising by Rs 1.50 to Rs 5.
    
Lever Brothers and Shezan International led the list of losers, 
falling by Rs 5 to Rs 10, followed by Philips, Shell Pakistan, 
Gatron Industries and PSO, which also suffered fall ranging from Rs 
1.50 to Rs 2. PTCL topped the list of most actives, up 70 paisa at 
Rs 31.45 on 20.119 million shares, followed by Hub-Power, off 25 
paisa at Rs 41.85 on 9.857 million shares, ICI Pakistan, up five 

paisa at Rs 16.70 on 6.063 million shares, D. G. K. Electric, up 10 
paisa at Rs 4.80 on 0.740 million shares, and Southern Electric, 
lower 20 paisa at Rs 7.60 on 0.361 million shares.
    
Other actively traded shares included D. G. K. Cement, up 35 paisa 
on 0.263 million shares, MCB, lower 20 paisa on 0.143 million 
shares, and KESC, up five paisa on 0.107 million shares.
    
DEFAULTING COMPANIES: Trading in this sector was dull as only two 
shares came in for trading and were quoted unchanged on 500 shares 
traded in the Sunshine Cloth.
    
BOARD MEETINGS: Quality Textiles, Dannemann Fabrics, Singer 
Pakistan, Citicorp Investment Bank, EFU General Insurance, EFU Life 
Insurance and Fauji Fertilizer on May 11, 12, 14, 15, 18, 18 and 21 
respectively.
Back to the top
=================================================================== 
 EDITORIALS & FEATURES
980503
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Islamabad
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By Ardeshir Cowasjee

COLUMNS of newsprint can be covered with descriptive praises of the 
natural beauty, the greenery, the foliage, the flora, the parks and 
playing fields, the trees, the hills of Islamabad.
    
Columns of newsprint can be covered with derisive descriptions of 
our elected representatives who, oblivious of their surroundings 
and the misery they cause, throw around their insubstantial weight 
under the mock-Moghul turrets and domes of the capital city, and 
who are as real as the plastic flowers they choose to plonk in 
their rose-bowls.
    
No sane citizen of this Republic can accord any merit to the two 
delinquent governments of the Mohtarma and the Mian that have 
alternately held sway over this country and its people for an 
entire decade, robbing and pillaging at will. The present 
government of Prime Minister Mian Mohammed Nawaz Sharif is weighted 
down by its own boasts of a huge ‘mundayte’, totally disregarding 
the fact that half the kitchen cabinet ‘rush’ to London whenever 
self-exiled MQM chief Altaf Bhai blows his whistle.
    
Whilst toing-and-froing between Karachi and Islamabad for the 
inquiry about the storming of the Supreme Court of Pakistan on 
November 28, 1997, now being conducted by three honourable Judges 
of the Supreme Court, one runs into assorted IPPians (the 
Independent Power Project boys), formerly deeply in cahoots with 
the Pipians, who contracted to supply a lot of unrequired power to 
WAPDA and its offshoots at truly astronomical rates, unbearable by 
either the country or the people.
    
One cannot blame the foreigners who have signed strictly and 
exclusively for their own gain and profit, happily exploiting the 
weaknesses of both the government and the people. But one can hold 
responsible our own master manipulators who have signed us away. 
Members of this group who are overtly or openly involved are : 
Benazir Bhutto, Asif Zardari, Ali Mahmood, Salman Faruqui, Anwar 
Saifullah, Captain Naseer, Shahid Hasan Khan, Javed Pasha, Yusuf 

Raza Gilani, Naveed Malik, Farooq Hasan, Saifullah Paracha, 
Sadruddin Ganji.  What is good enough for the United States should 
be good enough for us, as it should be for all other trading 
partners or supplicants of the mighty sole superpower. In the US, 
under the Security and Exchange Act of 1934, which has either been 
replaced or augmented by the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act of 1977, 
the giving or accepting of bribes or kickbacks or under-the-table 
payments is a punishable criminal offence, and the contract thus 
obtained is held to be void. We have our Anti-Corruption Act of 
1947, Customs Act of 1969, Income Tax Ordinance of 1979, and 
Company’s Ordinance of 1984, all of which are equally effective.
    
The latest law, the Eradication of Corrupt Business Practices 
Ordinance of 1998, promulgated highly improperly two days before 
the National Assembly was to meet ("....AND WHEREAS the National 
Assembly is not in session.......") deviates to the extent that it 
requires a person entering into a contract with the government to 
swear on oath, ‘on demand,’ that he has not given, or agreed to 
give, and shall not give, any bribe of any sort in any form. If a 
false declaration is made under oath it is tantamount to perjury, a 
serious punishable crime under the laws of any country.
 
When Benazir Bhutto’s government signed up for 7134 megawatts in 
excess of the country’s requirements, it did so purely for its own 
gain, simply to fill its own overfull pockets. It signed up to buy 
a minimum percentage of the total power generated, whether required 
or not, at a rate so enhanced as to be criminal  at 6.1 cents per 
KWH.
    
This equally corrupt government, now in a position of unbridled 
power, wishes these criminal rates to be renegotiated and brought 
down. There certainly is room for this, and luckily some sensible 
contractors have already agreed to renegotiate. The government 
stance is supported by the fact that in India the government 
managed to renegotiate and bring the contracted power rate down for 
the benefit of the people. Surely whatever India can do, we can do 
better.
    
In the meantime, certain adamant IPPians and Pipians have mounted a 
press campaign. But it will not work. The people not only do not 
want to pay, by the end of next year, double what they are now 
paying for their electric power, they simply cannot. Their pockets 
will not stand it. The campaign claims that foreign investments 
will dry up. But they already have, and will continue to do so 
until we manage to stop the president, prompted by his sponsors, 
from persistently announcing publicly to all and sundry that he is 
determined to bring in full Islamization of the system, without 
defining the extent and limit.
    
What the IPPians and the Pipians are saying is : we will box 
without gloves, we will bite off your ears, gouge out your eyes, 
kick you in the groin, but you, the government, will box with 
gloves and according to the Marquess of Queensberry Rules.  The 
contractors must also realize that there is no appeal court, and 
that the government, having manipulated matters, has successfully 
weakened the Judiciary. The latest inspired writ petition, directed 
at Chief Justice Ajmal Mian, has further eroded the staggering 
Judiciary. The presiding Judge hearing the writ, Justice Nasir 
Aslam Zahid, "observed that if such old cases were entertained it 
would open Pandora’s box." (Dawn, April 28) This leads us to 
presume that the good Judge apparently knows what the box contains.
    
Now to the enquiry into the November 28, 1997 storming of the 
Supreme Court  it has at last taken a turn for the better. On 
April 28, the learned Attorney General, Chaudhry Farooq, stormed 
into Courtroom No. 4. He informed the Judges that he had learnt 
from the press that an affidavit had been filed by me and, without 
denying its contents, requested that it be removed from the record 
as it had no nexus with the present proceedings. There was no 
comment from the Bench.
    
He also requested the Bench that I be cautioned from commenting in 
the press upon the progress of the inquiry proceedings. Justice 
Nasir Aslam’s response was to ask the Attorney General what he 
would do were I to be cautioned and yet continue to write. The AG 
replied that he would not file any application as he did not wish 
to start proceedings. The good Judge then explained that the days 
were long gone when Judges were supposed not to read newspapers for 
fear that comments upon cases in which they were involved would 
bias their thinking. Judges, as with all others, do have biases and 
views of their own, but the quality of a Judge is that in court he 
must be without bias or prejudices, he must be able to cast them 
aside.
    
This last observation made by Justice Zahid is reminiscent of Lord 
Salmon’s statement (AG vs BBC 1981 Appeal Cases 303 at 342) : "I am 
and always have been satisfied that no judge would be influenced in 
his judgment by what may be said by the media. If he were, he would 
not be fit to be a judge."
    
On April 29, Hussain Haqqani, "former special assistant to Punjab 
chief minister Nawaz Sharif (1988-90), former press assistant to 
Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif (1990-92), high commissioner of 
Pakistan to Sri Lanka (1992-93), press assistant to Prime Minister 
Benazir Bhutto (1993-94), secretary ministry of information and 
broadcasting (1994-95)" and an expert on assembling crowds, filed 
an affidavit and will testify at the next hearing.
    
A list of press people who were present in the Supreme Court on 
November 28, 1997 and who have voluntarily offered to have their 
statements recorded was given to the Deputy Attorney General. These 
are : Wadood Qureshi of Akbar-i-Lahore, Altaf Hussain Bhatti of 
Asas/Lashkar, Aslam Butt of the Frontier Post, Ilyas Chaudhry of 
Jang and Rao Khalid Mahmud of APP. A list of those who were also 
present but wish to be summoned by the Court was also handed over : 
Fakhr Zaman of the Turkish News Agency, Mushtaq Minhas of Daily 
Din, Khushnood Ali Khan of Khabrain, Shamshad Mangaj of Khabrain, 
Rashid Hijazi of Daily Pakistan, Faraz Hashmi and Rafaqat Ali of 
Dawn, Aslam Khan of Internews, Rashid Habib of Ausaf, Zafar Shaikh 
of Nawa-i-Waqt, and Muhammad Ismail of the Frontier Post.
    
Tomorrow morning, the Supreme Bench sits again to continue its 
inquiry.

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980509
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State of mind 
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By Irfan Husain

EVERY few weeks, one reader or another suggests that I write about 
positive things for a change, and move away from the doom- and-
gloom scenarios I keep painting in this space.
    
In my defense, I ask what positive developments have taken place 
for me to write about. I start every day with three newspapers, and 
it is difficult to be optimistic about Pakistan after ploughing 
through several thousand column-inches of news and comment on the 
mayhem and criminal stupidity that form such an overwhelming part 
of our national life.
    
So every once in a while, when I do come across an idea or a 
project that offers hope, I am more than happy to write about it. 
Last week, on the occasion of Dr Haroon Ahmed’s celebrated annual 
May Day lunch, my host offered to take me to the Institute of 
Behavioural Science the next day. I had heard about this Institute 
that had been established by Dr Haroon, his colleagues, friends and 
some philanthropists to address the problems of mental disorder. 
(Phones: 583-1621 and 583-3238).
    
At the end of the millennium, there are still barbaric taboos 
attached to the tragedy of mental illness. The well-to-do lock up 
suffering family members at home under sedation, while the poor 
ascribe the problem to demonic possession and seek help from quacks 
and frauds who masquerade as exorcists. In both cases, no serious 
attempt is made to cure the disorder.
    
Apart from such outdated attitudes, part of the problem lies in the 
lack of education, the low level of public awareness about the true 
nature of psychiatric diseases, and the lack of trained personnel 
to treat them scientifically. For instance, a city like Karachi, 
with a population of around 12 million, has only fifty qualified 
psychiatrists. 
   
And yet, according to professionals, at least 10 per cent of its 
citizens (or 1.2 million people) suffer from major psychiatric 
disorders. And if psychosomatic problems and epilepsy are included, 
this percentage rises to a shocking 35 per cent. Despite these 
horrifying statistics, there are currently only 250 hospital beds 
available to psychiatric patients in public and private hospitals 
in Karachi.
    
The Institute of Behavioural Science was established in an attempt 
to fill this vacuum. When I drove there with Dr Haroon last week, I 
entered a part of the city I was unfamiliar with. 
    
Parallel to the road that leads towards Karachi University, a 
veritable concrete jungle has sprung up. Block after hideous 
apartment block lines this rutted road which gets progressively 
worse as one approaches the IBS. Suddenly, we entered a gate, and 
were greeted with the sight of a low, elegant structure surrounded 
by six acres of land. 
   
After the ugliness we had seen on the way, this was an oasis of 
sanity, both literally and visually.
    
The IBS is currently housed in a pre-fabricated building that is 
both functional and handsome. Although future plans call for a 
series of imposing structures, I think it would be a big mistake to 
construct high-rise blocks because the present contrast between the 
large surrounding monstrosities and the single- storied building is 
calm and restful. 
   
There is enough space to build a series of low units to emphasise 
the difference between an aggressive external environment and a 
serene ambience inside the IBS space.
    
But considerations of aesthetics aside, it is wonderful to see what 
a group of dedicated doctors and generous donors have achieved. A 
clean, attractive and welcoming milieu has been created where 
patients are registered, and then meet a doctor in one of several 
consulting rooms. 
   
Apart from two psychiatrists who are available the whole day, 
senior doctors like Dr Haroon, Dr Zaki Hasan and their colleagues 
take turns at seeings patients at the Institute.
    
Basically, patients pay as much as they can, ranging from 400 
rupees for a preliminary consultation with a senior psychiatrist to 
free treatment for the poor, as IBS caters to the entire 
population. The money that comes in goes to the Institute, and not 
the consultants who donate their time free of charge. 
   
The day I was there, a local philanthropist promised to supply free 
medicines every month. Commonly prescribed drugs will be kept in 
the pharmacy and issued gratis to patients as and when required. 
The generous donor has pledged up to Rs 25,000 worth of free 
medicines per month.
    
The entire operation has been made possible through donations, both 
in terms of time and money. I was pleasantly surprised to learn 
that Dr A.Q. Khan, the moving spirit behind Pakistan’s nuclear 
programme, chairs the board of governors, and has spearheaded the 
fund-raising drive.
    
There is some irony in this, as Dr Haroon has been a vocal and 
consistent critic of nuclear arms. Indeed, he is a member of an 
international organization of doctors opposed to nuclear weapons. 
But fortunately for us, Dr Khan’s and Dr Haroon’s commitment to the 
cause of mental health has converged and resulted in the creation 
of the IBS.
    
The Institute’s ambitious future plans include a 100-bed 
psychiatric unit, a community mental health programme, a crisis 
intervention centre, a children’s unit, a drug dependence and 
rehabilitation department and a research unit. The project will 
cost over 300 million rupees and will obviously take a number of 
years to complete.
    
However, educating the public is likely to be a much slower 
process. Despite the presence of even the currently limited 
facilities at the IBS, response has been poor, largely because very 
few people know about it. 
   
In its first six months, an average of five patients a day have 
visited the Institute. And while common mental disorders like 
schizophrenia and epilepsy can be treated through easily available 
drugs, many uneducated people consider them to be evidence of 
possession by jinns, and routinely take patients to pirs and faqirs 
for unsuccessful and often painful exorcism.
    
Given these antiquated attitudes, raising public consciousness is 
at least as important as creating the facilities to treat mental 
illness that is likely to increase with growing urbanization and 
rising tensions in a city going rapidly mad. Also, given the shame 
and social stigma surrounding the whole subject of mental disorder, 
even educated people tend to hush up any psychiatric problems in 
the family. Clearly, a massive public education programme is needed 
to make people aware of the causes of such problems, and to teach 
them that the mind is as prone to disease as the body is.

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980507
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Islam's moral ideal                            
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Syed Muzaffar Husain
    
THE tragic episode of Karbala on 10th Muharram 61 A.H. resulting in 
the martyrdom of Imam Husain, the grandson of the Holy Prophet of 
Islam at the hands of a dissolute tyrant could have been avoided, 
had not the pre-Islamic barbaric spirit guided Yazid to settle the 
issues of caliphate by the aggressive array of brute force against 
the almost defenceless members of the noble caravan. 
    
Karbala was thus a blot on the fair name of Islam, when a tyrant 
had thrown to the winds the liberal qualities of clemency, 
tolerance and magnanimity.
    
Hussain's heroic defiance against illegitimate accession of Yezid 
who had assumed sacred office of caliphate as a usurper against all 
previous precedents  remains up to this day a protest against 
political corruption having the disastrous effect of causing a 
schism in the body politic of Islam.
    
Indeed Amir Muawiyah had violated the previous norms and practices 
by not ascertaining consensus or the popular will as regards 
succession. Nor did he leave the question to a committee of 
neutrals by explicitly disqualifying his son from becoming the 
Caliph. Instead, he preferred the hereditary model of Kingship  a 
practice wholly repugnant to the democratic values of Islam which 
had laid the foundations of the modern age of enlightenment, 
equality and tolerance. It stood for a democratic outlook, and not 
the perpetration of injustice or brute force.
    
The rational and logical superiority of Islam lies in upholding 
justice, and truth. It is unfortunate that the lofty teachings of 
the Quran and the Holy Prophet are today being disavowed more in 
the breach, to cause dissension, and disunity.
    
Toynbee the English historian rightly observes;" The extinction of 
race-consciousness is one of the outstanding moral achievements of 
Islam." The crying need today is to build bridges of understanding 
and love and to forge the unity of Islam, rather than to magnify 
differences. The global phenomenon of Islamic resurgence justifies 
the reassertiveness of Islamic ethos in the right direction. There 
are no dogmatic boundaries in Islam  a universal and cosmopolitan 
faith, and "a complete civilization" as noted by professor H.A.R. 

Gibb. A religion so evangelical and inspirational in spirit, and so 
heroic and triumphant in its achievements should not be 
circumscribed to dogmatic boundaries of sects, tribes and nations.
    
It is one of the glories of Islam that all through its history, it 
has acted as a powerful liberating force against tyranny and 
injustice. Much of its dynamism and triumph, it has derived from 
the spirit of 'Jihad' (waging war for religion) as well as 
"Shahadat"(martyrdom) instead of abjectly surrendering to the 
forces of evil however strong they may be. The concept of just and 
unjust war is not western but Quranic. It condones and considers 
war permissible only in self-defence under well defined limits. 
When undertaken, it should be pushed with vigour but not 
relentlessly. In any case the limits are not to be transgressed 
either by the aggressor or the aggrieved. (Quran 2:190).
    
The racial, ethnic and sectarian prejudices currently afflicting 
Islam are the result of parochial and excessive deeds having no 
sanction of either the Quran or Hadith. " As for those who divide 
their religion" warns the Quran in clear terms. (Al-Anam 6:159) 
"and break up into sects, thou hast no part in them in the least. 
Their affair is with Allah. He will in the end tell them the truth 
of all that they did."
    
Islam aims at liberation from all sorts of slavery  physical, 
intellectual and spiritual. It has taught man to fight tyranny 
bravely rather than cringe before it in abject servitude. In course 
of its history, humanity has often fallen prey to a number of 
shackles for the human mind. Islam freed man, from all 
superstitions, bringing him back to God and establishing a direct 
relationship between man and the creator.
    
According to the Quran, evil has many snares for mankind promising 
only delusion and deceit (Q 27:64). An eminent astronomer like Sir 
James Jeans who started his career as a godless sceptic finally 
arrived at the conclusion that the greatest problems of Science 
could not be resolved without believing in God. Similarly the 
famous sociologist Jeans Bridge has eulogized Islam for achieving a 
successful amalgam of the temporal with the spiritual into a 
harmonious system.
    
Today man is enslaved as much by materialistic greed, lust and 
avarice, as he is dehumanised by science and technology. Deprived 
of faith in God, he is torn away from the total reality reducing 
him to an unsocial animal  a brute, who under powerful Satanic 
impulses can endanger life on earth to the extent of causing its 
extinction. Islam had liberalized the human intellect, after a long 
period of Dark Ages in which mankind had plunged because of 
superstition of the church.
    
The Holy Prophet of Islam (PBUH) apart from being God's Messenger 
was the greatest educator of mankind. Under his influence and 
because of the educative impact of the Holy Quran, the children of 
the desert who had hardly known the ingredients of learning became 
the inheritors of classical learning as well as their renowned 
critics. In course of a few centuries, they piled up a colossal 
mass of writings of the Greek philosophers such as Plato and 
Aristotle, giving their own views on their philosophy.
    
Even in the twentieth century, the Quran continues to educate 
mankind not as a textbook of science, but in enlarging man's 
perspective, in overcoming obscurantism and fear of the unknown. 
Islam's advent was to bring to an end man's rule over man. It 
liberated man from the tyranny and superstition. 
   
It liberated women from the chains of servitude giving them equal 
rights of inheritance and divorce. Tyranny is still on the rampage 
in the guise of haughty feudals, demagogues, and exploiters.
    
The month of Muharram was sacred even before the tragedy of 
Karbala, but its sacredness has acquired special significance in 
the history of Islam because of the noble heroism of Imam Husain 
and his "jihad" against injustice, oppression and political 
corruption. 
    
Even a western historian like Edward Gibbon was touched to write on 
the poignant tragedy thus; "In a distant age and climate, the 
tragic scene of the death of Husain will awaken the sympathy of the 
coldest reader". His sacrifice approximates to the moral ideal of 
Islam, being capable of shaping history even after "shaheed's" 
death.


===================================================================
SPORTS
980509
-------------------------------------------------------------------
Rashid Latif to attend ICC captains moot
-------------------------------------------------------------------
By Our Sports Reporter

KARACHI, May 8: Rashid Latif will represent Pakistan at the annual 
International Cricket Council (ICC) captains conference at Lord’s 
on May 18.
    
Latif is already in England on vacations.
    
The chief executive of the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB), Majid 
Khan, said Latif was informed of the assignment last week.
    
"He was communicated (about the meeting) in England where he is on 
vacations," Majid said.
    
However, the PCB chief executive said Latif had not proceeded to 
England with cricket board’s permission. "We read in the newspapers 
that he has gone to England.
    
"He was not flown specially for the meeting."
    
Majid said the cricket board has not given Latif any guidelines 
regarding the next week’s meeting. "It is purely a meeting of 
captains in which they discuss several issues. The boards have got 
nothing to do with the meeting."
    
Nevertheless, Majid anticipated that the meeting might revolve 
around the laws of the game, extensive number of games and 
standardisation of the playing conditions.
    
Majid Khan, however, emphasised that Rashid Latif has been assigned 
to attend the meeting because he was the last Pakistan captain.
    
"Latif skippered Pakistan in the last series (against Zimbabwe). 
Until another captain is made, Latif is the captain.
    
"His appearance in the captains conference doesn’t mean that he 
will be the captain in the coming season," he clarified.
    
Interestingly, the inaugural meeting held last year was 
participated by Wasim Akram though Ramiz Raja had led Pakistan in 
the final series of the previous season against Sri Lanka.
    
All the captains of the nine Test playing countries discuss various 
issues of the games and then a final report is prepared to be 
submitted to the game’s governing body, the ICC.
    
The ICC then considers what changes were necessary. However, no 
significant changes were made last season after the inaugural 
meeting.

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980509
-------------------------------------------------------------------
Mansoor surprises Stewart on way to final
-------------------------------------------------------------------
By Our Sports Reporter

KARACHI, May 8: Qualifier Mansoor Zaman of Pakistan took another 
giant step forward today with a sensational three straight games 
victory over Australian sixth seeded world no 46 Stewart Bosewell 
to reach the final where he faces France’s Thierry Lincou in 
tomorrow’s title battle of Pakistan Squash Circuit Tow Tournament 
at the PAF Hashim Khan Squash Training Centre, Peshawar.
    
A fax message from the organisers said the reigning Junior Champion 
Mansoor Zaman , currently ranked 78 in the world squash, took 56 
minutes to record a 15-11,15-13, 15-13.
    
In yesterday’s quarterfinals, 17-year old immensely promising 
Mansoor Zaman , the son of former British Open champion Qamar 
Zaman, provided big shock to senior Asian champion Mir Zaman Gul, 
seeded third and ranked 37, also in straight games. Mansoor 
triumphed 15-11, 15-8, 17-14.
    
France’s world number 54 Thierry Lincou, the runnerup of the 
Pakistan Squash Circuit first tournament in Lahore, staged a great 
fight back to surprise Pakistan’s top seeded world number 24 Amjad 
Khan 15-17, 15-8, 6-15, 15-5, 15-11 in the other semifinal, lasting 
63 minutes.
    
Amjad Khan, the world number 24, yesterday won his quarterfinals 
when he recovered to beat seasoned campaigner Zarak Jahan Khan, the 
winner of lahore event, by 9-15, 15-13, 15-11, 15-10. Zarak, world 
no 44,was seeded no 5.
    
Yesterday’s Quarterfinals results:
    
Thierry Lincou (France) bt Anthony Ricketts (Australia) 15-11, 15-
11, 15-9, Amjad Khan (Pakistan) bt Zarak Jahan Khan (Pakistan) 9-
15, 15-13, 15-11, 15-10, Mansoor Zaman (Pakistan) bt Mir Zaman Gul 
(Pakistan) 15-11,15-8, 17-14, Stewart Bosewll (Australia) bt 
Mohammad Hussain (Pakistan) 15-5,15-5, 15-9.

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980504
-------------------------------------------------------------------
Zarak defeats Lincou to clinch squash title
-------------------------------------------------------------------
Sports Reporter
    
LAHORE, May 3: Bringing his experience into full use and excelling 
in stroke-play, anticipation and positioning, Zarak Jahan Khan of 
Pakistan, defeated Thierry Lincou of France in 69 minutes in a 
four-set final to win the International Squash Championship at the 
Punjab Complex before a capacity crowd on Sunday. Zarak won 15-11, 
15-12, 7-15 and 15-11.
    
When Thierry Lincou failed to return a backhand drop shot, Zarak 
won the championship amidst loud cheers from the squash lovers who 
braved hot weather of Lahore to witness the all-important match of 

the championship.
    
A total prize-money of $ 12,000 was distributed among the 
participants of the championship. The winner Zarak Jahan Khan 
received a cash award of $ 2,000 from the Punjab education minister 
Brig. Dhillon. Thierry Lincou got $ 1400.
     
Zarak won the first set in 17 minutes. Lincou matched him till the 
score was 4-5. Zarak scored three points in-a-row and thereafter 
built an 11-4 lead. Lincou narrowed the gap to 10-13 but Zarak went 
on to get the needed two points to clinch the first set at 15-11.
     
The second set lasted 22 minutes. Both the players were tied at 4-
4. Lincou managed to level the score at 9-9 and thereafter 12-12. 
However, Zarak executed two forehand shots to the score 14-12. In 
fact, Zarak took three points in-a-row to win the second set. 15-
12.
     
After losing the third set, Zarak braced his game in the fourth set 
and won that in 20 minutes. Both were level at 2-2 and later 8-8 
and 9-9. Zarak took control of the situation and made the score 14-
11 and won the decisive set at 15-11. The roaring  crowd gave Zarak 
a standing ovation.
     
The Punjab Squash Association (PSA) senior vice-president Dr Aamir 
Aziz, in his address of welcome, emphasised the need for completion 
of the modern squash complex near the Qadhafi Stadium. He said that 
70 million rupees (Rs 70,000,000) were required to build that and 
the investment could help Pakistan in keeping up the great 
traditions set by great players like Hashim Khan, Jahangir Khan and 
Jansher Khan. He said that budding players had been given under the 
tutelage of Gogi Alauddin, who could come up in coming years. He 
emphasised the need to use services of the greats of squash in all 
provinces.
     
Brigadier Dhillon promised to do whatever he could to ease the 
problems being faced by the PSA.

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