------------------------------------------------------------------- DAWN WIRE SERVICE ------------------------------------------------------------------- Week Ending : 18 November 2000 Issue : 06/44 -------------------------------------------------------------------
Contents | National News | Business & Economy | Editorials & Features | Sports
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CONTENTS ===================================================================
NATIONAL NEWS + IDEAS-2000 ends with aerobatics show + Saudi Arabia, Malaysia interested in Agosta + Al-Khalid's mass production soon: Sanctions not to hit defence + Govt rules out opening of border for Afghan DPs + Closure of border not to affect ties: Afghan FM + Pakistan ban on Afghan DPs defended + Foreign delegates call on Musharraf + Ordinance for quick disposal of default cases + Pakistan asks UN to send peace force + Pakistan rejects Indian allegation in helicopter crash + Pakistan, India urged to work on nuclear risk reduction + Govt may enforce dumping laws soon + EC rejects Nadra voters' list: LB polls on old rolls + PML decision on GDA on 20th --------------------------------- BUSINESS & ECONOMY + Bandwidth rates will be slashed to $3000 for ISPs + Ishrat hopeful about IMF loan: No to short-term debt + NBP to check money laundering + Ex-RCB official gets 3-year term + Lack of funds a snag in scientific development: CE + WAPDA seeks 51 paisa increase in rate + Oil, gas exploration accords signeds + Sindh to incur Rs2 billion subsidy on wheat + Provinces refused additional funds + Banks agree to roll over $1 billion FCY funds --------------------------------------- EDITORIALS & FEATURES + Once upon a time Ardeshir Cowasjee + Poverty of collective imagination Ayaz Amir + Reinventing the wheel Irfan Husain ----------- SPORTS + Saqlain scoops career best 8 wickets in first test match + Slow bowlers expected to dominate the proceedings + Miandad pulls out of selection body

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NATIONAL NEWS
001118
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IDEAS-2000 ends with aerobatics show
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SONMIANI (Balochistan), Nov 17: The four-day international defence 
exhibition ended here with an impressive aerobatics show at the 
Pakistan Air Force tactical range here on Friday.

"It was a joint venture of army and air-force in which tanks and 
fighter planes and Super Mushshak trainers participated," an 
official told AFP.

He said the Al-Khalid and Al-Zarar tanks, built with Chinese 
assistance, fired at designated targets and proved to be the main 
attraction.

Malaysia and Saudi Arabia are among several countries to have shown 
interest in buying arms from Pakistan, officials told the French 
news agency.

"Saudi Arabia is interested in the Mushshak trainer aircraft and 
Malaysia is keen on anti-tank missile systems and the Agosta 
submarines," said Maj-Gen Ali Hamid, chief coordinator of the show.

The exhibition, the first of its kind in Pakistan, was attended by 
defence chiefs and ministers from some 40 countries, it said.

APP adds: The aerobatics, air-to-ground, ground-to-ground and 
ground-to-air fire display impressed the foreign dignitaries.

Chief Executive Gen Pervez Musharraf was the chief guest on the 
occasion.

Foreign delegates, diplomats, and experts commended the 
achievements made by Pakistan in the field of defence production.

The joint display started at 10am with the two 35-year-old F-6 
planes, presenting salute to the participants at Sonminani.

The indigenously-developed 'Super Mushshak' plane presented 
dazzling aerobatics, which was followed by the Karakoram-8, 
advanced trainer aircraft, presenting a very high rate of rolls of 
300 degree a second.

A single Mirage aircraft passed through with a supersonic speed 
creating an impression as if a bomb had exploded with a bang.

The commentator announced that Pakistan was carrying out 
modifications and overhauls of engines, airframe and avionics of 
the aircraft at PAC Kamra.

It followed the firing demonstration by the indigenously-developed 
T-59M-II (Al-Zarrar), which is ranked among the most modern tanks.

The trawler anti-mine's (TAM) demonstration registered complete 
success when it minutely exploded two anti-tank mines.

The firing of ANZA (locally-developed ground-to-air missile system) 
was also demonstrated.

Another battle tank T-85 (Al-Khalid) also pounded a number of 
shells on the targets hidden behind a thick wall of the bushes.

The "Baktar Shikan" (ground-to-ground missile), used for destroying 
the thick-walled rolling stock besides tanks and other machinery, 
was also demonstrated.

The last round of the aerial display and firing demonstration 
comprised over the pounding of high and medium intensity bombs, 
shells, and firing of rounds.

Chief of the air staff, Air Chief Marshal Pervaiz Mehdi Qureshi, 
Naval chief Admiral Abdul Aziz Mirza, governors of Sindh and 
Balochistan, federal ministers and senior officials from the three 
forces and civil administration were also present, besides noted 
scientists Dr Qadeer Khan and Dr Samar Mubarakmand.

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001117
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S. Arabia, Malaysia interested in Agosta
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By Shamim-ur-Rahman

KARACHI, Nov 16: Saudi Arabia and Malaysia have expressed interest 
in Pakistan's expertise for building the French-designed Agosta 90-
B submarines and explored the possibilities for striking a deal in 
this regard.

This was stated by the naval chief, Admiral Abdul Aziz Mirza while 
briefing newsmen on navy's efforts for self-reliance at the media 
centre of Ideas 2000 defence exhibition on Thursday.

"We have been successful in the sale of midgets and we are also 
exploring the possibility of selling Agosta 90-B submarines to a 
regional country," he said.

Admiral Mirza added that Saudi Arabia and Malaysia were interested 
in the product. Qatar was also a buyer of Pakistan-built midgets, 
he said.

Delegation of these countries visited the surface ships and 
submarine rebuild and manufacturing facilities at the naval 
dockyard.

He said that any tri-lateral deal with regard to Agosta 90-B would 
not only boost Pakistan's image and credibility in international 
market, but also help in earning sizable foreign exchange, required 
for future development programmes of the services.

A deal in this regard would also result in considerable savings for 
the prospective buyers, he added.

Admiral Mirza said the navy was looking for regional and other 
markets for its products.

He said that the second Agosta, now being built at the dockyard, 
would be delivered in 2002 and the third would be commissioned in 
2004. Over 750 people were working on the project. Of them 500 had 
been trained in France, he added.

As the production gathers momentum, "we will certainly go for 
deletions for producing spare parts, which will enable us to reduce 
dependence on others", the admiral said.

He said Pakistan believed in transfer of technology and told a 
questioner that we have paid for all the assistance on transfer of 
technology to France, which figured out at $1 billion and with 
mark-up came at $1.4 billion. It included expenses incurred on 
setting up of workshops and upgradation of the shipyard.

Pakistan's public sector defence companies and overhaul rebuild 
capabilities were engaged in a wide-range of activities that could 
be utilized by friendly nations, he said.

Mr Mirza maintained that owing to the prevailing regional 
environment the outlay on defence was high and the expenditure 
could be off set by commercializing the defence industry and other 
allied sectors like training and repair/maintenance facilities.

The navy, he said, had gone in a big way for indigenization in 
shipbuilding with Chinese assistance. He said those countries, who 
were using similar type of vessels, could also benefit from 
Pakistan's expertise for training of its personnel besides repair 
and maintenance of the vessels.

Replying to a question about grounding of French-built P-3 Orion 
reconnaissance plane, the naval chief said those were being 
conserved for use in emergency. He added that because of the 
international sanctions in 1998 there were some difficulties with 
regard to its spares. Therefore, it was decided to conserve our 
energy.

"But if needed we can fly the plane," he said.

The French authorities had come under pressure from the European 
Union, after 1998, but that was a temporary phase which was over 
and "we have the best of relationship", the admiral said

Responding to a question with regard to the possibility of 
Karachi's blockade by India the naval chief said, "we can give you 
assurance this situation will not arise and there is no possibility 
of Karachi's blockade."

He said as Pakistan could not compare ship-to-ship or man-to-man 
with India, the strategy, based on "selective deterrence", had 
given a definite edge to it in selected areas.

Admiral Mirza said, Pakistan had acquired superior submarine 
technology, like Agosta class submarines besides ships and petrol 
boats, and was able to manufacture spare parts from its own 
expertise and those based on transfer of technology.

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001116
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Al-Khalid's mass production soon: Sanctions not to hit defence: CE
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By Shamim-ur-Rahman

KARACHI, Nov 15: Pakistan will soon start mass production of Al-
Khalid battle tank which will symbolize its capability in defence 
field domestically and internationally.

This was stated by the chief executive, Gen Pervez Musharraf while 
talking to newsmen after visiting the Ideas 2000 defence exhibition 
and seminar at the Expo Centre here on Wednesday.

The 46 tone, three-man tank has a maximum speed of 65 kilometres an 
hour and a cruising range of 400 kilometres.

"Pilot production of nine tanks is now in progress and mass 
production will start next year," said the chief executive. He said 
that Al-Khalid was one of the top tanks of the world, equipped with 
modern armoury. The tank had been developed with Chinese 
assistance.

Gen Musharraf, who had earlier seen the mobility and static display 
of the locally-manufactured hardware, referred to the development 
of Al-Khalid and Al-Zarrar tanks as well as the APC.

He said India had spent 25 years on the development of Arjun tank, 
which was rejected by its army because of its heavy weight of over 
58 tons. Its system was defective and mobility was not upto the 
mark owing to which it bogged down in the operational terrain. 
Consequently India had to import Russian tanks.

He said Al-Khalid was initiated in 1991 and today it was one of the 
best and lightest tanks in the world, which would be the main 
battle tank of the Pakistan army, said Gen Musharraf, adding that 
the project would also save millions in foreign exchange.

He disclosed that Al-Khalid was 47 tons, having the best gun in the 
world of 125-millimetres with the best fire control and night 
vision system besides excellent armour protection.

He was of the view that the two-year sanctions, imposed on Pakistan 
following nuclear tests in May 1998, would have not effect on the 
country's defence and export of weapons.

"US sanctions will not stop us building our own defence products 
and exporting them to the international market," he said.

"We have demonstrated a poor nation's option for acquiring required 
weapons", he said adding, "we have reached a stage where we find 
that the defence production is worth showing."

He said there were positive indications that the exhibition would 
generate economic interest in Pakistan and it would be an initiator 
of more such ventures in various fields of production.

But, the CE said, he could not quantify the earnings from export of 
defence equipment.

The chief executive also referred to development of advanced 
electronic devices, guns, and other weapon system through reverse 
engineering.

Referring to his meeting with some of the foreign delegates Gen 
Musharraf was hopeful about the outcome in the near future. He was 
sure that the share of defence equipment in exports would increase 
significantly, but he could not quantify in terms of money. "We 
should earn in billions", he said, hoping that this year Pakistan's 
total exports would cross the level of $10 billion.

He called for aggressive marketing for the country's defence 
production.

Replying to a question he said there was no restriction on Pakistan 
on indigenization and "we will make what is required by us."

Earlier, Gen Musharraf visited various pavilions, met foreign 
delegations and witnessed mobility demonstration on the second day 
of the exhibition.

At the mobility demonstration there was also a display of infantry 
weapons and equipment and armoured personnel carrier (APC) with 
12.7mm machine gun, manufactured by the Pakistan Ordnance Factory.

Agencies add: Pakistan would soon have a defence export and 
exhibition directorate to be located in Rawalpindi, displaying 
defence products, disclosed the Gen Musharraf.

Much of Pakistan's advanced weaponry has been built with Chinese 
cooperation, including nuclear capable, long-range missiles and the 
new Al-Khalid battle tank.

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001116
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Govt rules out opening of border for Afghan DPs
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Bureau Report

ISLAMABAD, Nov 15: The government announced on Wednesday that under 
the present circumstances it would not open its borders for Afghan 
refugees despite Kabul's request.

Speaking at a news briefing, Minister for Kashmir Affairs, Abbas 
Sarfraz, who also deals with refugees' issue in the country, said 
that Pakistan was monitoring the situation closely and only if 
human catastrophic conditions developed inside Afghanistan then it 
would review its decision.

"Pakistan cannot solve this refugees problem on its own. The 
international community needs to come forward with lots of 
financial assistance to address this issue," Sarfraz said, adding 
that Pakistan had its own problems so it could not be pushed around 
by anyone neither could its territory be used to dump everyone.

"We won't allow a free-for-all situation. There is a need to take 
hard decisions and swallow bitter pills," the minister said while 
showing his complete dissatisfaction over the international 
community's apathy towards the resolution of Afghan refugees 
problem.

Sarfraz cited economic reasons and law and order situation in 
Pakistan as the main problems which forced the government to take 
the latest decision. In view of the large number of Afghans trying 
to seek refuge in Pakistan, he said the government was trying to 
regulate the traffic to ensure that refugee status was given to 
only those who were genuinely displaced.

The government, he informed, was considering placing scrutiny 
committees comprising government and UNHCR officials to verify the 
antecedents of those wanting to seek refuge and to desist economic 
migrants etc from entering Pakistan.

The UNHCR has been requested to establish camps for the displaced 
persons within Afghanistan to restrain those not entitled to 
refugee status from entering Pakistan.

"We have also requested the UNHCR and the WFP to provide assistance 
to the displaced persons in the proposed camps", he disclosed.

The Afghan refugees, the minister said, were suffering primarily 
because of the apathy of some of the rich nations. 

 "Regularly reducing aid to them for any reasons is in no way going 
to make them go back," Sarfraz said, adding, "Pakistan in spite of 
hosting the largest population of refugees, this year received 1.7 
per cent of UNHCR's total budget." Under the present circumstances 
it was essentially required that additional funds were provided for 
the fresh arrivals of Afghan refugees in Pakistan, Sarfraz pleaded.

The government, he said, was pursuing a two-pronged strategy which 
discouraged fresh arrivals but treated existing refugees in a 
civilised manner and trying to get them repatriated with full 
honour.

The minister refused to accept the general impression that Afghan 
refugees dispersed all over the country had any role in the 
deterioration of the law and order situation.

Secretary Kashmir Affairs Javed Akram, who was assisting the 
minister in the press briefing, told newsmen that the official 
figures showed that only 3 per cent crimes were committed by the 
Afghan nationals.

The minister acknowledged that dispersion of the refugees all over 
Pakistan was a cause of concern but he said there were no quick 
fixes to such problems.He said the government had no intention to 
pull the Afghans out of the settled areas and confined them to 
refugees camps. "The problem needs to be addressed through a well 
thought out long-term strategy," he argued.

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001118
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Closure of border not to affect ties: Afghan FM
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Correspondent

QUETTA, Nov 17: The United States has no justification for 
attacking Afghanistan on the pretext of the presence of Osama bin 
Laden the Saudi billionaire, Afghanistan's Foreign Minister, Wakil 
Ahmed Mutawakil, said while talking to newsmen in Quetta on his 
return from the OIC conference in Doha on Friday.

The minister said that there was no change in relations between 
Pakistan and Afghanistan after the closure of the border, conceding 
that it was an internal problem if Pakistan refuses entry to Afghan 
refugees.

He said that there were no terrorist camps in Afghanistan, nor was 
there an agreement between Pakistan and Afghanistan to extradite 
criminals and fugitives from justice between the two countries.

Mr Wakil Ahmed Mutawakil said that both the countries would 
continue cooperation between the two countries as good neighbours 
as any conflict would not hamper their cordial relations.

He said that the Afghan government was trying to improve its 
relations with the other countries as he represented his country at 
the OIC summit as an observer, interacting with the brotherly 
countries.

The Afghan foreign minister said that the Afghan emirate has banned 
cultivation of poppy, thus the Islamic countries should help 
Afghanistan in its crop substitution programme.

He sought material help for displaced persons affected in the 
Afghan civil war, and also for the Afghan refugees still residing 
in Pakistan.

Mr Wakil sought a role for OIC countries to facilitate talks 
between Afghanistan and its Northern opponents, and has been 
seeking a ban on all military supplies to Afghanistan's opponents.

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001112
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Pakistan ban on Afghan DPs defended 
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Bureau Report 

PESHAWAR, Nov 11: NWFP Governor Lt Gen Syed Iftikhar Hussain Shah 
on Saturday defended ban on more Afghan refugees and said "it is 
based on the realization that the province can not bear the burden 
of more arrivals due to its financial constraints". 

Talking to newsmen here he clarified that the ban had no nexus with 
any effort of the government to expel Afghan refugees already 
lodged in the province. He said there was pressure on the 
government from local businessmen and the general public for 
imposing restrictions on the movement of refugees and also to stop 
their fresh flow. "Our action was also prompted by the press 
reports of huge exodus of people from Afghanistan," he said adding 
the step was also influenced by the reports that terrorist may be 
entering Pakistan in the garb of Afghan refugees. 

The governor said, "the decision was well thought out and in the 
larger interest of the people and it was taken after consultation 
and getting the positive nod from the chief executive". He 
clarified that there was no discrimination between the supporters 
of northern alliance or the Taliban as the impression was being 
created by media. 

Referring to the UNHCR objection to the decision, the governor 
said, "why don't they (UN) arrange the same facilities across the 
border which they were offering on this side of the border. We have 
our own problems and we have to tackle them according to our own 
circumstances," he added. 

Gen Iftikhar said, "we are already shouldering the burden of some 
two million Afghan refugees whose presence entails special social 
and economic problems as such we are unable to absorb more of 
them." 

Answering a question he said the performance of his cabinet was 
under constant watch and anyone found lacking would be sent home. 
He however hinted an increase of at least couple of more ministers 
to shed some burden from over-worked ministers. 

When asked as to what changes he had brought during his three 
months in power in terms of betterment of civic facilities in the 
provincial metropolis, the governor admitted his failure in doing 
anything worthwhile because of financial crunch. 

The governor admitted communication gap during the recent jail 
unrest and attributed the incident to the reaction of some 
miscreants who were affected by the actions of the jail 
superintendent. 

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001117
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Foreign delegates call on Musharraf
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By Our Reporter

KARACHI, Nov 16: The chief executive, Gen Pervez Musharraf, met a 
number of delegations at the exhibition and discussed with them 
matters of mutual interest.

Those who met Gen Musharraf, included Ukraine's first deputy 
chairman of national security council, Bosnia's defence minister, 
Malaysia's air chief, Qatar's chief of staff and French rear 
admiral.

He also visited the international pavilions where foreign 
manufacturers had displayed their products.

The chief executive also visited pavilions of the Chinese 
manufacturers many of who were engaged in joint ventures with 
Pakistan, such as K-8 jets, tanks and other military vehicles, 
avionics, shipping and other related fields.

He also visited the stalls of French, Italian, Swiss and other 
European manufacturers of defence equipment and was briefed on 
their performance.

At the Ukraine stall he was assured of fulfilment of agreements 
already signed with Pakistan besides meeting future requirements.

During his visit the London-based regional sales director of the 
RBR International, Ridha Mahjoub, offered to invest one million 
pound sterling for setting up a factory in Pakistan to manufacture 
bullet-proof personal protection jackets being used by the military 
and police personnel. Mr Mahjoub said he was willing to enter into 
collaboration with the public sector in this regard if the chief 
executive approved it.

APP adds: At each stall the chief executive showed keen interest in 
the products on display and made searching queries about their 
operational performances.

At hall 1 and 3 where European companies as well as China, Turkey 
and Ukraine had set up their stalls, the particular interest were 
DCN International, RBR International, Litton Italia, Alcatel, 
Kharkov Morozov Machine-building, Mass International, Hueawei 
Technologies, Gerrett Electronics, FIAR the co-venturer with 
Pakistan for Grifo-7 Radar, James Info Group, Marine Group, Cos-
Mo.s. Italy, Rom Arm, Romania.

DCN International is the commercial branch of DCN, the French naval 
shipbuilding company whose expertise is demonstrated in every field 
of technology.

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001118
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Ordinance for quick disposal of default cases
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Rafaqat Ali

ISLAMABAD, Nov 17: The President on Friday promul-gated the 'Non-
Performing Assets and Rehabilitation of Industrial Undertaking 
(Legal Proceeding) Ordinance, 2000,' providing a mechanism for 
quick disposal of bank default cases.

The ordinance, called Corporate and Industrial Restructuring 
Corporation (Amendment) Ordinance, 2000, provides a legal framework 
for the recovery of stuck-up loans.

Law Minister Aziz A. Munshi told Dawn that the law removed fears of 
the investors and at the same time, it reassured the bank of 
realization of what was due.

The minister said that the law intended to rehabilitate economy and 
it provided legal remedy and protection to both borrowers and 
banks.

Under the new ordinance, the defaulters whose cases are pending the 
courts will be entitled to get the outstanding amount recalculated 
from the State Bank's verification committee.

Sources said that the law was drafted in the light of the military 
leadership's considered opinion that figures quoted by banks with 
regard to stuck-up loans were highly exaggerated.

The law provides that the court, which is seized of any of the loan 
default case, would be empowered to refer the matter to the 
verification committee for fresh determination of defaulted 
amounts.

The law provides that banks, while trying to recover defaulted 
loans, would make all possible efforts for reviving the sick unit.

The verification committee would consist of a senior officer of the 
State Bank, and two chartered accountants nominated by the SBP 
governor and one chartered accountant nominated by the Council of 
the Institute of Chartered Accountants of Pakistan, Karachi.

The verification committee will examine the case of fraud, mis-
representation, breach of any provision of law regarding the 
calculation, existence and repayment of a financial obligation, 
outstanding loan, mark-up or interest, and correct determination 
and calculation.

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001113
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Pakistan asks UN to send peace force 
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DOHA, Nov 12: Chief Executive General Pervez Musharraf on Sunday 
reiterated Pakistan's unflinching support to the inalienable 
national rights of the Palestinian people. 

In a statement at the evening session of the 9th Islamic Summit, 
devoted exclusively to the crisis in the Middle East, the Chief 
Executive said this motivation was driven by the same conviction 
and commitment that determines Pakistan's resolve to defend its own 
independence. 

"We uphold and support the right of the Palestinians to establish 
an independent state in Palestine," he told the leaders of the 56-
member organisation. 

The Chief Executive said the Israeli design to annex Al-Quds Al-
Sharif is contrary to the principles of justice. Al-Quds, he 
declared, must return to the Palestinian sovereignty and the right 
of Palestinian refugees to return to their homeland must be 
respected. 

"These demands are rooted in international law and morality, 
universally accepted norms and decisions of the United Nations," 
Gen Musharraf said. 

Pakistan, he said, salutes the farsighted leadership of Chairman 
Yasser Arafat who has been equally brave in negotiations and as a 
legendary freedom fighter. The Chief Executive said Pakistan 
applauded the strategic choice Arafat and his colleagues made for 
pursuing the cause of Palestinians liberation through negotiations 
and trust in international mediation. 

"This is a sombre undertaking which has tested their patience and 
restraint in the extreme," the Chief Executive maintained. 

In the present crisis when Israel has opted to act with arrogance 
and brute force, the Palestinians need our steadfast support, said 
the Chief Executive. 

He called for demonstrating unity and sagacity as the best way to 
serve the Palestinian cause. "We must send a strong message that in 
our heart and soul one billion Muslims are with their Palestinian 
brothers." 

General Pervez Musharraf said the peace process would be meaningful 
only if Israel respects and implements all existing agreements and 
time frames for a comprehensive settlement. The peace process, he 
argued, could not be compartmentalised. 

"For durable peace in the Middle East, first and foremost, the 
historical injustice in Palestine must be addressed," he said 
adding that OIC message should clearly identify the costs of 
Israeli intransigence and violence to the world and the danger 
posed to regional and international peace. 

The Chief Executive declared that the people of Pakistan espoused 
the Palestinian cause when they were struggling for their own 
independence. 

"Part of our national ethos, our support for the legitimate cause 
of the Palestinian people is strong and abiding. We are confident 
they will prevail." 

General Musharraf said the daily massacres of Palestinians by the 
ruthless Israel military machine have caused outrage worldwide. "It 
has shocked all those who reposed hope in the success of the peace 
process," he stated. 

Condemnation of Israel by the overwhelming majority of the UN 
reflects global sentiment, he said. 

The Chief Executive demanded immediate end to Israeli violence and 
urged the UN to dispatch a peace force to save innocent 
Palestinians from Israeli crimes. "We in the Muslim world with 
strong ties of history and culture are deeply pained and agitated. 
We have come to Doha to demonstrate solidarity with our Palestinian 
brothers." 

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001115
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Pakistan rejects Indian allegation in helicopter crash 
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KARACHI, Nov 14: Navy Chief Admiral Abdul Aziz Mirza on Tuesday 
rejected speculations about Pakistan's involvement in an Indian Air 
Force helicopter crash near the border. 

"This is out of the question. Pakistan is not involved in the 
incident," Admiral Mirza told reporters here. He said Indian 
Defence Minister George Fernandes had also ruled out any Pakistani 
involvement. 

India has launched an investigation into Sunday's crash, 90 
kilometres south of the Gujarat district of Nalia, in which seven 
of the 12 military personnel on board had perished. 

Indian Air Force chief A.Y. Tipnis suspected the helicopter might 
have been shot down. "It is premature to say so at this moment, but 
that's one of the things we will investigate," Tipnis said on 
Monday. 

The Indian Air Force was recovering on Tuesday the wreckage of the 
helicopter near the Pakistan border. "We are not ruling out 
anything," IAF spokesman Squadron Leader R.K. Dhingra said, adding 
that a court of inquiry had been set up to determine the cause of 
the crash. 

Dhingra said the helicopter had been hovering over three 
unidentified fishing boats in the marshy area when the incident had 
occurred. 

"The surviving co-pilot said they had descended to 50 metres above 
sea level and were settling over the three boats. "The next thing 
he remembers was being in the water," Dhingra said. 

Four helicopters were working to winch up the wreckage on Tuesday, 
while navy divers sought to recover the dead bodies. "Examining the 
wreckage will be crucial to determining the cause," Dhingra said. 

Indian Air Force chief Tipnis, who visited the site of the crash 
and spoke to the co-pilot of the Russian made MI-8 helicopter, 
ruled out engine failure as a cause.-AFP 

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001117
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Pakistan, India urged to work on nuclear risk reduction 
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By Our Reporter

KARACHI, Nov 16: Pakistan and India were asked to work on nuclear 
risk reduction. This suggestion was made during a presentation on 
the last day of a two-day international seminar on defence 
production, being held in connection with Ideas-2000, on Thursday.

The changing nature of the international arms market, role of 
private sector in defence technology and the significance of 
transfer of such technology to the Third World countries and a host 
of geo-political issues were focused upon.

Owing to a major shift in geostrategy and the changing nature of 
warfare with more lethal weapons and growing cost-ineffectiveness 
of the military, it was emphasised that Pakistan should develop 
indigenous arms production base so that there was a civilian 
fallout from the technological developments in the military sector.

In view of Pakistan's threat perception, which is focused on India 
in the backdrop of freedom struggle in Kashmir, it was emphasised 
that Pakistan's nuclear weapon status required a reframing of 
strategic doctrines and reshaping of policies.

For Pakistan, there could not be a distinction between strategy and 
tactics as far as nuclear weapons were concerned.

While Pakistan's primary security threat perception was from India, 
it should not ignore its western borders.

The impact of resource constraints on the market trends was also 
examined in one of the presentations.

It was noted that the international arms market was increasingly 
being driven by economic, rather than political considerations. Due 
to this attitudes and practices of arms manufacturers had come to 
resemble their civilian counterparts.

In a presentation on the development of the aviation industry it 
was suggested that the Aircraft Manufacturing Factory, at Kamra, 
should be designated as the core unit of the envisaged aviation 
industry of the country.

It was also suggested that all future aircraft deals be penned down 
with a precondition that the transfer of technology relating to 
manufacturing would be part of the overall package.

It was also emphasised that a dedicated deletion of foreign vendor 
items should be initiated besides initiating a phased programme for 
the induction of generic aviation-related technologies, facilities 
and products be made and implemented.

In order to develop the role of the private sector in defence 
production it was suggested that it should be provided the same 
facilities which were available to the state-owned enterprises in 
this sector.

A detailed analysis was made of the changing trends in the 
international arms market. Now, instead of buying new equipment, 
many financially-constrained nations were looking to modernizing 
their existing inventories through upgrade packages which would 
give them increased combat capability.

It was learnt that commercial off-the-shelf technologies were 
increasingly being used to meet military requirements. It was also 
noted that market pressures were forcing standardization in some 
product areas and strategic business alliances and joint ventures 
in others, were the order of the day.

It was noted that the arms markets would increasingly lay more 
emphasis on international rather that domestic considerations, as 
was the case in the past. Domestic orders would remain important 
but would be increasingly eclipsed by the need to export because 
that is what would be needed in order to survive. As a consequence 
of this, off-shore production of military components might 
eventually become common place as was the case with consumer 
electronics, automobiles and civilian passenger aircraft.

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001115
-------------------------------------------------------------------
Govt may enforce dumping laws soon 
-------------------------------------------------------------------
By Our Staff Reporter 

KARACHI, Nov 14: Commerce Minister Abdul Razzak Dawood has said 
that the anti-dumping law will be enforced from next month to 
protect the local industry. In a meeting with the members of the 
Karachi Chamber of Commerce and Industry (KCCI) on Tuesday, he said 
that the associations and trade bodies would have to work in line 
with the government to prove the dumping of goods by foreign 
countries at cheaper rates. 

"We would have to prove the material injury to our industries at 
the international courts in case any country would challenge our 
dumping charges," he said adding that every industry should gear up 
its efforts in arranging relevant data, so that dumping duties 
could be imposed on solid grounds. 

Anti dumping law, which was initiated in 1996 to protect the 
domestic industries, could not be promulgated due to various 
reasons relating to the WTO, he said. Regarding other issues, he 
said the sugar prices would come down very soon as millers were 
expected to resume full-fledged cane crushing shortly. 

A KCCI member asked the minister to remove taxes and duties, which 
account for Rs8 per kg so that prices could be stabilized. 

The minister refused the proposal, saying, "I will not ask the 
Central Board of Revenue (CBR) for any tariff cut." On textile 
quota policy, he said we have already prepared a draft and invited 
comments from various associations. 

He said the policy would cover a period of three years. We like to 
wrap up the matter before Ramazan so that we could finalize it at a 
meeting in Karachi on November 25. 

In response to a demand for further slashing export refinance from 
eight per cent, he rejected the proposal of the business community. 
"It cannot be done right now," he added. 

He said IMF and other donor agencies are deadly against this 
facility, urging the government to do away with it but "we are 
fighting on it in Islamabad." 

On export credit guarantee scheme, he said a private company had 
been formed under the umbrella of this scheme, which would be 
operational from January next to help value added and garment 
sectors. Besides, a window of $150 million would also be available 
for exporters to benefit from this facility, in case they face any 
running capital problems. 

In order to increase exports of non-traditional items, Dawood said 
a Rs1 billion production facility and upgradation fund was set up, 
which would soon start working. 

Regarding SRO 417, he said the decision on this issue was delayed 
due to outdoor engagements of the finance minister and myself 
coupled with preparations of IDEAS 2000 exhibition. He said that 
there would be another round of meeting, shortly to finalize the 
decision. 

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001112
-------------------------------------------------------------------
EC rejects Nadra voters' list: LB polls on old rolls 
-------------------------------------------------------------------
Faraz Hashmi 

ISLAMABAD, Nov 11: The Election Commission of Pakistan has rejected 
the computerised voters lists prepared by the National Database and 
Registration Authority (Nadra) in view of large number of 
complaints of errors and omissions received from across the 
country, a spokesman for the Election Commission told Dawn on 
Saturday. 

The Commission has now decided to use voters lists prepared 
manually during census and later verified by the army in its door-
to-door verification survey from Sept 25 to Oct 20. These manual 
lists would now be displayed in the 18 districts where local bodies 
elections are to be held on Dec 31, EC spokesman Kanwar Dilshad 
said. 

"Now elections will be held on the basis of lists prepared manually 
and not on the basis of computerized lists of Nadra," he said. He 
said Nadra had used the data of these manual lists for preparing 
the computerized lists but because of large-scale errors and 
omissions, the EC has decided to use the original manual lists for 
holding elections. 

The EC has also extended the date for filing claims or objections 
or applications for correction till Nov 16. The date for hearing 
the claims and objections on these lists has been extended to Nov 
20. 

Two copies of the lists will be prepared for publication after the 
hearing of objections and claims, he said. The final lists would be 
available by Nov 28, the spokesman said. 

Asked whether rejection of Nadra lists could cause delay in 
elections, the spokesman replied in the negative. "There will be no 
delay in the election as we had kept enough cushion for such 
delays," he said. 

When asked whether the EC would also withdraw Urdu language lists 
from Sindh and replace them with Sindhi language lists, as was 
being demanded by the province, the spokesman said that Nadra and 
Sindhi Language Authority at present were engaged in discussions. 

"We hope they will find out a way for preparing the electoral rolls 
in Sindhi language," the spokesman said. 

This is the second time that the EC has extended the last date for 
filing of public claims. Earlier the last date of filing claims, 
objections or corrections was extended from Nov 7 to Nov 12. 
Originally Nov 7 was fixed as the last date for verification or 
correction of the electoral rolls

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001117
-------------------------------------------------------------------
PML decision on GDA on 20th
-------------------------------------------------------------------
Bureau Report

ISLAMABAD, Nov 16: The Pakistan Muslim League has called a meeting 
of its central working committee on Nov 20 in the federal capital 
to decide joining of the Grand Democratic Alliance.

The decision was taken at an informal meeting of senior party 
leaders, which was also attended by Kulsoom Nawaz.

Party rebels, Chaudhry Shujaat Hussain, Pervez Illahi and Ijazul 
Haq did not attend the meeting.

They held their own meeting at Chaudhry Shujaat Hussain's 
residence, which was attended among others by Pervez Illahi, Ijazul 
Haq, Mian Munir, Tariq Aziz, Humayun Akhtar and Maqbool Sheikh.

"Had we gone to the meeting the PML would have been divided into 
two groups," Mr Hussain told reporters. "By staying away from the 
meeting, we have saved the party".

But, the convener of the PML coordination committee, Raja Zafarul 
Haq said the "informal meeting", had been called just for holding 
consultations.

"It was a consultative or preparatory meeting for the CWC meeting," 
Mr Haq said at a briefing.

He recalled that it had been decided at the July 30 CWC meeting the 
party should contact all the political parties to adopt a common 
strategy for the restoration of democracy.

Portraying a bleak picture of economy, social and political 
situation, the party convener said, the situation called for 
launching a joint struggle by all the political forces.

When asked to comment on the refusal of Chaudhry Shujaat Hussain 
and Pervez Illahi to attend the meeting, he said: "I pay tribute to 
them for their efforts to save the party from division."

He today's meeting was held to avoid an embarrassing situation, 
which had been created at the July 30 meeting.

Asked whether the PML leadership still considered Pakistan People's 
Party and Benazir Bhutto as a security risk for the country, Mr Haq 
said: "PPP is not a risk."

Questioned whether the PML would also demand the release of Asif 
Ali Zardari, he said, "it is a judicial matter."

Mr Hussain, who was critical of the informal meeting, said his 
group had no rift with any individual "but with a typical mind-set" 
and policies.


=================================================================== 
BUSINESS & ECONOMY
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001118
-------------------------------------------------------------------
Bandwidth rates will be slashed to $3000 for ISPs
-------------------------------------------------------------------
Staff Reporter

KARACHI, Nov 17: The government has decided to make sharp reduction 
in bandwidth rates for software companies, Internet Service 
Providers (ISPs) and information technology-related businesses.

This was stated by the Minister for Science and Technology, Dr 
Attaur Rahman during a brief chat with newsmen at a seminar on "e-
commerce: enablement for Pakistani banks" at Habib Bank Plaza on 
Friday.

He said the announcement in this regard will be made at a press 
conference to be held on 21st of this month.

According to the minister, the bandwidth rates for software 
companies, IT related-business and institutes will be slashed to 
$3,000 per megabit (PMB) from $32,000 PMB and for ISPs to $15,000 
PMB.

With this sharp decline, the bandwidth rates in Pakistan will go 
much below the rates prevalent in India. On domestic bandwidth 
rates, he informed to touch this issue sometimes later.

He said the government has already signed agreements with various 
companies of USA and Singapore to increase their present capacity, 
and added to provide more details in the press conference. Pakistan 
makes large bandwidth purchases from USA.

It may be mentioned here that a year back, the bandwidth rates were 
over $130,000 PMB.

Earlier, addressing the seminar, he asked the banks to prepare a 
road-map to achieve target of implementing e-commerce in 18 months 
because it is now a matter of survival in the global world. He said 
every banks should check its performance after every three months 
so that objectives of e-commerce could be accomplished in time.

He said the worldwide e-commerce trading now currently stands at 
$17 billion per annum, which is set to reach at $1.4 trillion in 
the next two years and $3 trillion in the next four years.

He said currently 11 working groups have sped-up their efforts to 
implement the e-commerce solutions in Pakistan.

Governor State Bank of Pakistan (SBP), Dr Ishrat Hussain said there 
is a need to increase awareness of e-commerce amongst the banks so 
that their presence could be felt in the global banking scenario.

He said we will miss the opportunities in case our banks fail to 
accelerate their efforts. He said few months back, the SBP Task 
Force was formed and now I want results of its achievement.

SBP chief said that the banks can work as catalysts, helping the 
country to foster its foreign exchange earnings from exports. He 
assured full support to the local banks in materializing the task 
of e-commerce.

Dr Syed Irfan Hyder, head of e-commerce working group, Ministry of 
Science and Technology, said if electronic clearing system 
commences, the cost of transaction will fall to Rs30 per branch 
from the existing Rs 70-100 per branch.

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001112
-------------------------------------------------------------------
Ishrat hopeful about IMF loan: No to short-term debt 
-------------------------------------------------------------------
Mohiuddin Aazim 

Karachi, Nov 11: State Bank Governor Dr Ishrat Husain said on 
Saturday Pakistan is unlikely to seek short term commercial debt 
(in foreign currency) and will continue to manage its balance of 
payments through other sources. 

At the same time he said he hoped that the IMF board of executive 
directors would approve a ($580 million) standby loan for Pakistan 
on November 29. 

"We are not ready to go for short term commercial debts," the 
governor told a press conference here on Saturday. "No question of 
going for the commercial debt," he reiterated recalling how 
traditionally expensive short-term commercial debt landed Pakistan 
into troubled waters in the past. "This makes no sense," he 
remarked referring to past practice of raising short-term 
commercial debt at 4 per cent and more over LIBOR to retire foreign 
loans. 

He explained in detail how Pakistan managed its tricky balance of 
payments in the last fiscal year while refraining from seeking 
short term commercial debt-and in a near absence of inflows from 
international financial institutions. The only inflow the country 
witnessed was of $125 million from Asian Development Bank (as the 
second tranche of the Capital Market Development Program loan. 

His remarks on the short-term commercial debt served him well in 
explaining the rationale behind the SBP buying of $1.6 billion 
dollars from open currency market in 1999-2000. 

He said the IMF board of executive directors would hopefully 
approve a standby loan for Pakistan when it meets on November 29 in 
Washington. He pinned his hope on the fact that the IMF had agreed 
not to make the settlement of HUBCO issue a condition for offering 
the loan. 

"HUBCO leverage is over," he remarked. But he appreciated the 
recent gesture of the World Bank on the HUBCO issue saying that the 
Bank is coming out as an honest broker now. 

Dr Husain said Pakistan signed the letter of intent for the standby 
loan last week. He said approval of the loan by the IMF board of 
executive directors would also pave the way for $2.2 billion worth 
of further rescheduling on $32.7 billion foreign debt. 

Replying a question about key conditions for the IMF loan, he said 
the contents of LOI would be made public after the approval of the 
IMF board of directors. 

He would not come out with a clear answer when asked whether 
international finance institutions want Pakistan to sign CTBT to 
qualify for their assistance. He would only say that Japan is had 
ready to revive as much of financing to Pakistan as was flowing in 
before May 1998 i.e. $500-$600 million per year-if Islamabad signs 
CTBT. 

Speaking about the prospects of economic growth in the current 
fiscal year, the governor said as a high 7.2 per cent growth in 
agriculture sector has enlarged the base a further jump in it is 
not very expected. "We have to discount some of agricultural," he 
said citing water shortage for Rabi crops as another reason for it. 

He said the Rs 430 billion revenue target set for this fiscal year 
is very ambitious compared to last year revenue collection of Rs 
346 billion. Does this mean this and other targets for this year 
are unrealistic? "I do not think these are unrealistic," he said. 

Explaining the rationale for setting macroeconomic targets at high 
levels the governor recalled a downward trend witnessed in various 
sectors of the economy fiscal 1995-96 through 1998-99. "We have to 
have stretch targets," he said meaning that it is time for 
compensating the downward trend in exports and revenue collection 
in previous years. 

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001118
-------------------------------------------------------------------
NBP to check money laundering
-------------------------------------------------------------------
Mohiuddin Aazim

KARACHI, Nov 17: State-run National Bank plans to induct anti money 
laundering officers at all of its 1400 plus branches. The officers 
"would monitor customer account openings and banking transactions 
to ensure that the bank is not used for any unlawful activity," 
reveals an NBP document.

The document does not elaborate on this issue but bankers say the 
idea is worth implementing. It is not known whether any other 
state-run bank has a similar plan but their officials do not rule 
out the possibility of following suit.

NBP would possibly select anti money laundering officers from 
amongst the staff of a central compliance cell. The cell is being 
set up to co-ordinate with every layer of decision making in the 
bank for rectification of irregularities pointed out by internal 
and external auditors. The staff of the compliance cell and anti 
money laundering officers would form part of the newly created 
operations group.

Top bankers and brokers say it is good on the part of a state -run 
bank to check money laundering but they believe this would not cut 
deep into the roots of this evil. "Money laundering can be checked 
effectively only if there is more strict checks on the business of 
money changers who serve as a main vehicle for it," said a banker 
close to State Bank.

(An SBP report on money changers identifies them as operators of 
parallel economy.)

President of Forex Association of Pakistan Malik Bostan denies the 
charge on behalf of about 400 money changers registered with the 
State Bank. "Those who are not registered (their number runs into 
hundreds) may be involved...but majority of the registered money 
changers have nothing to do with money laundering," Bostan told 
Dawn.

When questioned further, he admitted that "a couple of big 
(registered) money changers are also involved. Declining to name 
them he said: "I am sure the government agencies know them."

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001118
-------------------------------------------------------------------
Ex-RCB official gets 3-year term
-------------------------------------------------------------------
Reporter

LAHORE, Nov 17: An accountability court on Friday awarded former 
Rawalpindi Cantonment Board military lands director Hashim Babar 
three years imprisonment and a fine of Rs2 million in a corruption 
case.

In case of non-payment of the fine he will have to undergo an 
additional imprisonment of 18 months, declared the accountability 
court judge.

The National Accountability Court had filed the reference against 
Mr Babar for purchasing a Rs3 million bungalow in Islamabad and 
spending Rs2 million on its renovation and alteration in 1989, 
which was incompatible to his known means of income.

The court did not convict him on two other charges regarding the 
purchase of Rs1.8 million furniture and fixture for the bungalow 
and handed over it to his wife after converting it into a rest 
house.

The convict was allowed to file an appeal before the Lahore High 
Court within 10 days.

The reference was filed in the Lahore High Court's Ehtesab bench in 
May 1997 but shifted to the accountability court after its 
constitution under the NAB Ordinance last year.

MANZOOR WATTOO CASE: The court adjourned hearing of the reference 
against former Punjab Chief Minister Mian Manzoor Wattoo till Nov 
30 as the court was told that he could not appear before it on the 
instructions of doctors who have advised him a two-week bed rest 
for backache.

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001118
-------------------------------------------------------------------
Lack of funds a snag in scientific development: CE
-------------------------------------------------------------------
Nizamuddin Siddiqui

KARACHI, Nov 17: The government fully realizes the importance of 
education and science but cannot invest in these sectors in a big 
way at the moment because it's strapped for cash, said Chief 
Executive Gen Pervez Musharraf on Friday.

He was speaking at the foundation stone-laying ceremony of the Dr 
Panjwani Centre for Molecular Medicine & Drug Development to be 
completed at a cost of $5 million. The independent research centre 
on Karachi University's campus is going to have a formal link with 
the HEJ Research Institute of Chemistry.

The centre will be the first of its kind in Southeast Asia that 
will focus on the development of innovative gene-based treatments 
of health disorders and promote the understanding of disease 
patterns in Pakistan.

Nadira Panjwani has donated $2.5 million towards the establishment 
of this centre in memory of her father, the late Dr Mohammad 
Hussain Panjwani. In recognition and support, the government has 
approved a PC-1 of an equal amount for the centre.

"All my colleagues in the cabinet realize that human resources 
development is very important for the progress and prosperity of 
the country," said Gen Musharraf, adding, "and we have had many new 
and innovative IDEAS in our meetings. However, we have many 
problems as well. And the problem which is the most difficult to 
resolve is the lack of finances or funds. This problem appears in 
front of us like a brick wall whenever we think of doing something 
meaningful for the country."

In order to be able to make big investments in the fields of 
education and science the government must first invest in projects 
and programmes which could generate the much-needed funds, he said. 
That's why the government was not in a position to invest a lot in 
the human resources development sector at present.

The CE stated that his government wanted to create an environment 
in which universities and research institutes could produce more 
and more PhDs in science.

"We remain committed to this task and will pump as much funds as 
possible in this area."

Appreciating Dr Nadira for providing $2.5 million for the centre, 
the CE said it should serve as an example to be emulated by other 
industrialists and businesspersons.

The federal minister for science and technology and director of the 
HEJ Research Institute of Chemistry, Prof Attaur Rehman, said in 
his speech that many universities in the United States and Europe 
boasted research centres established with the funds provided by 
philanthropists. "This, however, is not very common in Pakistan," 
he remarked.

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001118
-------------------------------------------------------------------
WAPDA seeks 51 paisa increase in rate
-------------------------------------------------------------------
By Faraz Hashmi

ISLAMABAD, Nov 17: The National Electric Power Regulatory Authority 
(Nepra), concluded on Friday a hearing on WAPDA's request for 
increasing power rate by 51 paisa a kw/h from September, 2000.

WAPDA's general manager, finance, Javed Nizam concluding his 
arguments responded to the objections raised by officials of some 
ministries over the increase in tariff, sought by his organization.

The Water and Power Development Authority had earlier sought 31 
paisa increase but on Thursday it submitted a revised petition 
asking for 51 paisa hike.

The commerce ministry and planning division opposed the request, 
saying it will affect the country's exports and increase poverty.

"WAPDA alone cannot be blamed for high power cost as the overall 
economic conditions and many other factors are pushing up the power 
rates," the WAPDA finance GM said.

He added that his organization was being portrayed as a villain and 
cause of all the economic ills. "Nobody has ever questioned the 
petroleum ministry for fixing the fuel price mechanism for WAPDA," 
he said.

Nepra had decided to hear the case for three days but cut short the 
hearing by one day as no one turned up to defend the consumers' 
interest.

Earlier, the planning division's head of power wing, Ghulam Haider, 
opposed the WAPDA's plea for 51 paisa increase in tariff.

Giving facts and figures about the poor performance of WAPDA's 
power plants, he stressed that it should also be taken into account 
before allowing power utility to put additional burden on the 
consumers.

Mr Haider called for careful examination of WAPDA's plea before it 
was allowed to introduce fuel price indexation factor.

He asked Napra to put off the hearing for four days to minutely 
evaluate WAPDA's request for automatic adjustment of fuel price 
increase.

However, WAPDA's general manager said the 1994 power policy allowed 
the independent power producers to pass on the fuel price hike to 
their consumers. He added that the planning commission was part of 
the policy-framing exercise but it did not object to this clause 
and was having a second thought now.

The commission, he said, had also supported the deregulation policy 
of the petroleum ministry without taking into account that the 
international price index of the oil would surely affect price 
structure.

"Why this deregulation policy was approved by the planning 
commission if it is opposed to the automatic price adjustment 
mechanism"? Mr Nizam asked. He added that the oil prices had shot 
up by 107 per cent since the government deregulated its prices.

"Why the petroleum ministry and its distributing agencies are not 
being questioned as it was this (petroleum) ministry which had 
worked out the price mechanism for fuel oil" Mr Nizam said.

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001117
-------------------------------------------------------------------
Oil, gas exploration accords signed
-------------------------------------------------------------------
By Rafaqat Ali

ISLAMABAD, Nov 16: The government on Thursday signed two agreements 
with international companies for onshore and offshore oil and gas 
exploration.

Onshore petroleum exploration licence was granted to the joint 
venture of Union Texas (UT), Occidental Petroleum (OP), and 
Government Holdings for exploration in Mehran Block No 2467-4 in 
the Thatta district, covering about 577.42 sq-km.

The other licence was granted to Ocean Pakistan (OP) and Government 
Holding for off-shore Makran Central Block No 2462-4, covering some 
6,000sq-km.

The agreements were inked at a ceremony at the petroleum ministry.

Under the three-year licence, UT will conduct geological and 
geophysical studies and acquire 70km of 3d seismic data and drill 
four exploratory wells.

The block was awarded through a competitive bidding process and UT 
was assigned the role of operator in the joint venture. The total 
commitment in the Mehran Block is $5,070,000, according to an 
official announcement.

Ocean Pakistan will carry out geological and geophysical studies 
and acquire process, and evaluate a minimum of 200sq-km of 3d 
seismic data.

This survey will be part of a much larger 3D seismic programme 
covering nearly 2,100sq-km in the three Makran blocks operated by 
the company. The total cost of the overall programme is estimated 
at over $10 million.

Union Texas has drilled 120 exploratory wells and made 53 
successful oil discoveries in Pakistan with the result that it is 
now the largest oil producer in the country. Its total oil 
production is 24,000 barrels a day and total gas production is 
about 200 million cubic feet a day. The UT is a wholly owned 
subsidy of the BP Group, one of the world's largest oil and gas 
companies.

Ocean Pakistan is a subsidiary of the Ocean Energy Inc, one of the 
largest independent oil and gas exploration and production 
companies in North America. Its main operations are in the West 
African countries of Angola, Equatorial Guinea and Cote d'Ivore, 
and in Egypt, Russia (Tatarstan), Yemen and Pakistan.

Ocean Pakistan has remained active in Pakistan's energy sector and 
made discoveries in Dhurnal, Ratana, and Bhangali. At present, it 
holds two exploration blocks - Kohlu and Zamudan. It is a wholly 
owned subsidiary of Occidental Oil and Gas Corporation of USA.

The agreements were signed by Petroleum Secretary Abdullah Yousaf 
on behalf of the President, Shahid Ahmad, director-general of 
Petroleum Concessions on behalf of the Government Holdings, UT 
president David Knox, OP president Dick Oringderff, and OP general 
manager Kamil Lodhi.

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001115
-------------------------------------------------------------------
Sindh to incur Rs2 billion subsidy on wheat 
-------------------------------------------------------------------
Sabihuddin Ghausi 

KARACHI, Nov 14: A cash-strapped Sindh government is moving towards 
incurring more than two billion rupees subsidy on wheat trade this 
season for which it has so far already borrowed Rs11 billion from 
the banking system. 

Borrowed at the rate of 12 per cent mark-up under the commodity 
finance programme, the Sindh government procured 630,000 tons of 
wheat from the farmers within the province and has also received 
more than half a million tons from the Punjab. It will get one 
million tons from Punjab for which the federal government has 
created a credit line of Rs8.3 billion in the provincial food 
account. 

Out of this, Sindh has utilized Rs5.5 billion so far and an equal 
amount was borrowed for the procurement of wheat from the farmers 
in the province. 

At present the Sindh government is reported to be maintaining more 
than 925,000 tons of wheat stocks which is something unprecedented. 
While the wheat is still trickling in from Punjab, the offtake of 
wheat from the government stocks in Sindh has remained very low 
this season. 

Millers and traders have preferred to pick up wheat from the open 
market, where it was available at Rs830 for a 100-kilogram bag till 
early this week as against official issue price of Rs850. 

This slow offtake and piling up of the wheat stocks in government 
godowns is proving to be a costly affair for the Sindh government 
as it has to provide Rs300 million for transportation and stocking 
besides the financial cost. 

Sindh is reported to have given Rs250 million to the National 
Logistic Cell for lifting wheat from Punjab and Rs51 million to the 
Trading Corporation of Pakistan for providing godowns. 

Now with the month of November entering the second week, the 
officials in Sindh government foresee a "wheat lean period" setting 
in and expect 125 millers of the province demanding wheat from the 
government stocks. 

A set of officials in the Sindh government look desperate to 
dispose of this entire stock at the rate of Rs875 for a 100-
kilogram bag and adjust the bank loan at earliest so as to incur 
minimum financial cost. However, the planners foresee a relatively 
lean harvest next season as persisting drought and a shortage of 
irrigation water has affected wheat sowing. 

"Wheat output will not be 3 million tons next season" is the 
considered opinion of a well-known agriculturist and initial 
estimate is that next crop may give anywhere up to 2.5 million tons 
of wheat at the most. 

One of the options available to the government is to do away with 
the entire subsidy on wheat trade. The government may procure 
600,000 tons for its stocks. The traders may be allowed to buy 
wheat from the open market and if needed private sector be given 
permission to import wheat. 

The Sindh government has accepted the federal government's claim of 
Rs6 billion in respect of wheat trade and has released Rs500 
million. 

Well-placed sources said that the Sindh government is expected to 
release another instalment of Rs500 million before next month.

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001114
------------------------------------------------------------------- 
Provinces refused additional funds 
------------------------------------------------------------------- 
Ihtashamul Haque 

ISLAMABAD, Nov 13: The Centre has turned down a demand of the 
provinces for an increase in their funds and asked them to 
substantially cut their expenditures. 

Official sources said here on Monday that the finance ministers of 
the four provinces had met the finance secretary, Moeen Afzal, on 
Saturday and demanded an increase in their funding, under the 
National Finance Commission (NFC) award. 

Sindh and Balochistan were of the view that they needed additional 
funds to pull through the current financial year as their budgeted 
annual allocations were not enough to initiate any new projects in 
education, health and rural development sectors. 

Sources said that they had also demanded the reconstitution of the 
NFC award so that they could get their adequate share. 

The secretary-general asked the economists of the finance ministry 
and the planning division to give their recommendations for cutting 
down the running expenditure of the federal government and the 
provinces. One of them, the sources said, proposed that the public 
sector development programme (PSDP) should be wound up. However, 
this was not accepted, with the secretary-general saying it will 
stop the development process. 

But, the sources said, the immediate casualty will be the current 
PSDP, which was likely to be slashed by Rs5bn from Rs120bn to 
Rs115bn. 

The participants of the meeting were also of the view that in the 
first place the defence budget should be slashed and if that was 
not possible it should be made "efficient". 

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001114
------------------------------------------------------------------- 
Banks agree to roll over $1 billion FCY funds 
-------------------------------------------------------------------
Mohiuddin Aazim 

KARACHI, Nov 13: The stage is set for a second roll-over of 75 per 
cent of foreign currency swap deposits mobilized by local and 
foreign banks before May 1998. 

Senior bankers say the State Bank has succeeded in persuading these 
banks to roll-over the deposits for second time. 

Banks had agreed to roll-over more than $1.5 billion swap deposits 
for two years for the first time in 1998 to ease off the balance of 
payment problem the country had to face after going nuclear on May 
28, 1998. 

Bankers say the roll-over of swap deposits will help Pakistan in 
seeking rescheduling of Paris Club and London Club loans after the 
approval of a $580 million standby arrangement by the IMF board of 
executive directors. 

Pakistan has already signed the letter of intent (LoI) for it and 
hopes that the board would approve the facility when it meets in 
Washington on November 29. 

The bankers say the State Bank has agreed to pay 25 per cent of the 
swap deposits in foreign currency on their maturity starting from 
next month. This means that the actual roll-over will be in case of 
75 per cent of the total $1 billion worth of swap deposits. 

A letter sent by SBP to the banks said that the roll-over would be 
for two years but some bankers close to the central bank said the 
period was yet to be decided. 

The bankers say since the State Bank has agreed to pay 25 per cent 
of the swap funds in foreign currency this will result in an 
outflow of at least $250 million between December 15, 2000 and 
March 31 2001. 

Back to the top
EDITORIALS & FEATURES
001112
------------------------------------------------------------------- 
Once Once eupon a time 
-------------------------------------------------------------------
Ardeshir Cowasjee 

OMAR Kureishi's book, 'Once Upon a Time', was published last month. 
The dust cover does it no justice. It depicts an ill-proportioned 
Gateway of India and a young boy wearing Taliban-style knee-
concealing shorts which no self-respecting lad would have worn in 
those far off days. 

The publisher's blurb tells the prospective reader : "It can truly 
be said of Omar Kureishi that he needs no introduction. His is a 
household name and he is a living legend. He is a man of many parts 
and sets the highest standards in all of them. Best known as a 
cricket commentator, his voice became his signature; as a writer, 
he has a distinctive style and his canvas ranges from cricket to 
politics which he examines with a sharp, analytical mind that shows 
him as a bit of an iconoclast. 

"He is a man of honest opinions with not a trace of malice or 
bitterness in him and is in control of the rage within him. Born in 
Murree of a Punjabi father and a Kashmiri mother, he was one of 
nine brothers and two sisters. His schooling was in Poona and 
Bombay and he is a graduate of the University of Southern 
California. He has been editor of 'The Times of Karachi', an 
English language daily newspaper, now defunct, and was director of 
public affairs in Pakistan International Airlines before he 
returned to freelance journalism as one of the leading columnists 
of the country. 

"He has written for some of the most prestigious newspapers and 
magazines of the world. He is the author of 'Black Moods', 'Out to 
Lunch', 'The System', and 'The Other Side of Daylight', none of 
them about cricket. 'Cricket is something I enjoy, not so the 
subjects I have written about in these books,' he says. Omar 
Kureishi lives his life on his own terms." 

Very cleverly, it ends there. It does not go on to say how 'life' 
lives with him on its terms. 

Omar suggested that I write a preface of some 500 words. Difficult, 
I told him. What do I write? 'This is a well-written book by my 
friend Omar Kureishi. It is about his life as he lived it up to the 
birth of Pakistan. It is a good read for those interested in either 
remembering or realizing what life was like in those far off days. 
Omar tells a good story. Read his book.' That would be my preface. 
A tenth of what is needed. 

Omar has presented me with a copy of his book in which he has 
inscribed, 'Our friendship has survived almost half a century and 
is getting stronger. This defies logic. Are we both mad?'His 
question is not difficult to answer. We are both as sane as the 
people and circumstances surrounding us allow us to be. Our views 
are divergent and each suffers the opinions of the other without 
rancour or ill-feeling. We are tolerant and we have the ability to 
laugh not only at each other but at ourselves. 

A paragraph from an early chapter took me back to my school and 
college days : "It is hard to describe exactly what an Irani 
restaurant was. It was obviously an eating house but with a 
distinct culture of its own. Its clientele was a mixed bag of 
office workers, shopkeepers, students, itinerant salesmen, the 
unemployed, the dead-beats, the great unwashed, those not likely to 
appear on the pages of 'Onlooker' the glossy society magazine of 
beautiful people. 

"Yet it was not downbeat and to go to an Irani restaurant was not 
considered slumming. The dicor was simplicity itself. Armless, 
bentwood chairs, and tables sometimes with a cheap marble top. 
There was no tablecloth, nor any napkins. You wiped your hands as 
best as you could or used a stained washbasin near the kitchen. 
There was no printed menu. The waiter, if one could describe him as 
such, rattled off what was available as if he was reciting a mantra 
and it all came out as one word, 'keemabahajiacutlasskorma'. 

"You needed all your wits to decipher it. All business transacted 
was oral. Your order was taken and it was bellowed to the kitchen 
and thus the entire restaurant knew that one had asked for 'aek 
adha keema, aek paon roti'. Or it could simply be 'aek adhi cha, 
aek slice sadha (no butter)'. When it came time to pay, the amount 
owing too was bellowed out and each customer would be identified, 
viz. 'Khaki pant wallah, lal kamiz wallah, topi wallah sabib, ainak 
wallah.' 

"The cashier was the Irani himself seated on a high chair behind a 
counter (gulla) near the exit like a sinister godfather or a king 
cobra guarding a treasure. Nothing that happened in the restaurant 
escaped him. He was constantly on the lookout for those who might 
sneak out without paying or members of his own staff who may try 
and short change him. My brothers, Humayun (Toto), Rafiushan 
(Shanoo), and I once ordered a plate of chips to be shared by the 
three of us. In our joyous feasting we consumed more than our 
entitlement of tomato (pronounced tamatar) sauce. 

"This profligacy did not escape the Irani. 'Char anna' , he said 
and added it to the bill. We protested and said that the tomato 
sauce came with the chips. 'Adhi batli nahin' ruled the jury, judge 
and executioner. Then he mumbled something rude under his breath. 
It was the Irani himself who was the ambience of the restaurant. 
His credit policy was no credit. Yet some regulars were able to 
establish a line of credit, the ceiling being five rupees and when 
it came time to pay, you paid. The Irani did not have to employ 
mawalis (hoodlums) to twist your arm. His threatening to do so was 
chilling enough. We spent many hours in the Irani restaurants and 
looking back they enrich the memories." 

Close to the school to which I went, Karachi's BVS, which stood 
where it still stands, was the Irani restaurant, Cafi George, named 
after King George V of Great Britain whose photograph (he in the 
uniform of an admiral of the fleet) graced the entrance, hung atop 
the door. The gulla was mounted by Faredoon, nephew of owner Bejan 
Irani, a giant of a man, who tolerated us schoolboys, was kind, and 
even gave us credit, being appreciative of the fact that the 
average pocket money received by each of us was four annas per 
week. He often forgot to remember the sum owed. 

Jovial Faredoon anglicized his name when he opened his own 
restaurant down the road which he called 'Frederick's'. Near the 
gulla in Frederick's stood a weighing machine on which one could 
weigh oneself by inserting an anna. When we were flush, we would 
collect one anna amongst ourselves and ask Frederick to stand upon 
it and weigh himself because he would tip the scale at 300 lbs, the 
end of the scale, at which a bell would ring and the entire 
clientele of the restaurant break out in applause. 

When we graduated to the Dayaram Jethmal Sind College (which still 
stands where it stood) we used to frequent the 'jaam and narial 
wallah' who had his establishment under a tree in the nearby Burn's 
Garden. Kassim was no Irani, he would extend no credit. So, from 
the second week of the month onwards, we would frequent the 
'Avalon', Khodadad Mahabokhtar's Irani restaurant around the 
corner. Khodadad was another kind and jovial man who never 
complained when at times we could only order iced water for which 
there was no charge, and was never angry when the waiter bellowed 
'Kuch nahine khaya, kuch nahin peeya, do gilass tora, bara anna.' 

Any time, any day - give me 'Cafi George', 'Frederick's', and the 
Avalon rather than MacDonald's, Kentucky Fried, or Pizza Hut! 

Frederick and his restaurant were still going in 1958 when martial 
law was declared and Ayub Khan took over the country. Martial law 
headquarters were situated in the Baloch Regiment's mess on Bonus 
Road. Frederick was awarded the contract to run the canteen in the 
mess. One fine day, a truck carrying a platoon of armed men drew up 
before 'Frederick's'. Frederick himself was up in his flat on the 
third floor of the adjacent building. His sidekick in the 
restaurant, Ahmad, rushed out on to the pavement, and shouted 
'Faredoon, Faredoon, inja biya, inja biya.' 

Frederick appeared on his balcony, Ahmad pointed to the truck. 
Frederick, thinking the day of reckoning had come and he was to be 
picked up for having done fifty things which he should not have 
done, promptly fainted. He only came to when Ahmad rushed up with 
the news that all was well and that General Haq Nawaz, martial law 
administrator in Karachi, had merely sent round for his breakfast 
as the stoves in the mess had not yet been hotted up. 

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001117
-------------------------------------------------------------------
Poverty of collective imagination
-------------------------------------------------------------------
By Ayaz Amir

IN Chakwal, which I am increasingly loth to leave as the years roll 
by, I am ready to go to bed after an early dinner. If I have the 
energy I have my daily fix of Pakistan Television's hit show, the 
nine o'clock news, which I try not to miss because the sight of the 
Chief Executive and the President of the Republic performing their 
routine functions (cutting tapes and so on) I find reassuring, the 
way I find the coming out of the stars and the waxing and waning of 
the moon reassuring. After that and a bit of reading it is lights 
out for me.

You will say this is a grave disadvantage. Paris is where the 
lights are. Provincial places breed provincial minds. It is true 
that in other climes more salubrious than ours, small town life 
misses out on a great deal: no opera, ballet, Beethoven, Kishori 
Amonkar or theatre. Not even the can-can and the Moulin Rouge. Hard 
to build rich lives on such poor soil. But in our Republic this 
cultural distinction between town and country has been done away 
with and replaced with a perfect equality. If there is no 
Shakespeare or Wagner in Chakwal, it is no small consolation to 
know that there is none in Karachi or Lahore either. If not 
equality of opportunity at least equality of idiocy.

Regarding such a happy state of affairs what Mencken said of the 
American South could, with slight variations, be said of the wide 
spaces of our Republic: "In that gargantuan paradise of the fourth-
rate there is not a single picture gallery worth going into, or a 
single orchestra capable of playing the nine symphonies of 
Beethoven, or a single opera-house, or a single theatre devoted to 
decent plays, or a single public monument that is worth looking at, 
or a single workshop devoted to the making of beautiful things." 
The South must have had some orchestras, whether capable of playing 
grand music or not. We have brass bands which play at marriage 
ceremonies. For the recording of film music there must also be some 
orchestral playing. But beyond these two exceptions a vast desert 
stretches.

Reading the announcement columns of the leading English newspapers 
can be an edifying exercise. In them you get notices of clothing 
and household linen exhibitions, art shows where pictures for the 
most part are not worth seeing, seminars and talks presided over by 
professional scarecrows with all too familiar expressions. None of 
this is fortuitous. Halaku burned Baghdad. No one has burned the 
cities of the Islamic Republic. We have simply pulled down whatever 
little we had.

Let's leave Islamabad out of the reckoning, a city more in keeping 
with the national temper than we care to think because it 
faithfully mirrors the aridity and poverty of our collective 
imagination. To have laid down such a gridlock of crisscrossing 
roads or to have raised from the ground such hideous architecture 
is no easy task. Even half the greenery of this city is false, 
owing its cover to a single pernicious weed, the paper mulberry. It 
is a city which does not have its own water supply, which indeed 
has polluted the streams flowing from the Margalla Hills, is on no 
trade route, does not earn its keep and is therefore a burden on 
the public finances. Its only business is government and 
administration and even at these pursuits, right from the moment of 
its inauspicious birth, it has proved a signal failure. It is hard 
to justify such a city's existence.

But Lahore and Karachi were supposed to be different. If the 
legends about these grand metropolitan centres are to be believed, 
they were once home to the better things of life. Looking at them 
today it is hard to imagine that such a time ever existed for they 
have become monuments to concrete and filth, noise and pollution.

We like to believe that we are a people of immense talent. Perhaps 
even if the evidence for this belief is thin. Do we have a 
collective eye for beauty? Looking at the Chaghi replicas (in 
honour of our nuclear tests) and the rocket models we have erected 
in our major cities it is hard to think so. Even our parks we 
cannot keep clean or free of cement. As if there were yet more 
things for the army to take over, it has taken over the Ayub 
National Park in Rawalpindi to turn into a Heritage Museum. Don't 
be surprised if this last patch of green in that city is turned 
into another monument to concrete.

What are the three outstanding national achievements of the last 
twelve months? Turning Gawalmandi in Lahore into a 'Food Street' as 
if there was a shortage of food outlets in that city, holding the 
much-touted Defence Exhibition in Karachi as if the world needed 
more reminders of our military prowess, and the trail-blazing work 
of the National Registration and Database Authority (NADRA) which 
has just given a comic turn to national voting lists. Just this 
morning (Thursday) there was a NADRA ad in the papers under the 
resonant title, 'The Gift of Bright Future' (no indefinite article, 
please, we're Pakistanis).

Under the picture of a smiling mother and child comes this robust 
legend: "NADRA is laying down the concrete foundations for a bright 
future by undertaking the tremendous task of creating a 
comprehensive national database. This will bring about a system of 
government with better coordination and efficiency and help build a 
just and informed society." For the syntax alone the author of 
these inspired lines deserves a sound (and preferably public) 
whipping. As for the logic, it is impeccable. Once the last moron 
in the country is documented, a bright future, not to mention a 
just and informed society, will be ours for the grasping. And this 
is another army-controlled organization.

The larger towns had the advantage over the countryside in two 
other respects: plumbing and red-light areas. In townhouses if you 
had the means you had indoor toilets with running water, an 
inescapable necessity for the reading man (and no doubt, woman) 
because at least in my experience civilization and a slow start in 
the mornings are closely inter-related. But in the last fifteen 
years this has changed. Rural artisans have become familiar with 
the installation of plumbing. If you want an indoor toilet, you can 
easily have one. This is one advantage, therefore, which is 
cancelled out.

As for the other - that pertaining to the red-light areas - a 
change has occurred even there. Time was when the amorous soul who 
had it in his heart to throw money at a dancing girl travelled to 
cities for this purpose. Now, largely because of the sham 
puritanism that has had Pakistan in its grip since Zia ul Haq's 
time, dancing girls are happy to respond to invitations even from 
far-flung areas. There are any number of occasions when I have been 
invited to mujras in the surrounding villages of Chakwal and if I 
have not responded to all of them it may be because of my strict 
morality or the company (although not necessarily in this order). 
Farmers of course I don't mind (being one myself) but being in my 
cups with local grandees such as sub-inspectors of police, excise 
and taxation inspectors and naib and full tehsildars I find less 
than uplifting. (Come to think of it I don't like mixing my 
pleasures with officialdom of any sort.) This distinction too is 
therefore wiped out. It is only the greenhorn who now goes to 
listen to a mujra in a certified shahi mohalla.

I am, however, no expert in this business because vicarious or 
distant pleasure - which is all that one gets in a mujra - has 
never thrilled me. When in the streets of Kabul a comely woman was 
pointed out to Emperor Babur he deigned not even to look in her 
direction, saying that what was it to him if the lady in question 
was sweet or saltish if her beauty was to remain the beat of a 
distant drum. In this thing if in no other I am one with the great 
emperor.

As for moral sustenance, what with the good offices of the local 
Christian communities, small towns have become self-sufficient in 
this commodity too, with bottled happiness being just a phone call 
away. The only danger is adulteration, widely and perhaps 
dangerously practised in this business. But then which business is 
not adulterated in Pakistan? Why then blame the purveyors of moral 
sustenance alone?

Such being the balance sheet, where is the brave heart who will 
tell me the advantages of living in one of Pakistan's great centres 
of art and learning. What will I find there - grand opera or 
symphony - that I am unlikely to get in Chakwal? 

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001118
-------------------------------------------------------------------
Reinventing the wheel 
-------------------------------------------------------------------
Irfan Husain

LIKE other Nadras I have known, NADRA (National Database and 
Registration Authority) is not famous for either accuracy or 
punctuality.

With much fanfare, it produced electoral rolls for several 
districts which were so riddled with mistakes that the Election 
Commission had to withdraw them. Now NADRA has promised us error-
free lists by November 28 so that local bodies elections can be 
completed in 18 districts by December 31. Good luck, is all I can 
say; however, I am taking no bets on NADRA's ability to deliver.

I have been unable to comprehend the military mind's insistence on 
reinventing the wheel each time the army takes over. Since this 
happens with monotonous regularity in Pakistan, my failure to 
understand the psychology of successive juntas is a matter of some 
concern to me. In this particular case, we have an Election 
Commission and a Census Bureau, both of which have been performing 
as well as can be expected of government agencies. If our present 
rulers were unhappy with their performance, surely the answer lay 
in improving the existing departments instead of creating yet 
another bureaucracy. It seems odd that when all the talk in the 
corridors of power is about downsizing, a new Authority is created 
without closing down the existing agencies responsible for 
registering voters and issuing ID cards.

When General Naqvi's National Reconstruction Bureau unveiled its 
grandiose devolution plan, it produced all the excitement of Hanif 
Mohammad grinding out a century in two days of defensive batting. 
The complicated set-up proposed in the plan, far from gripping the 
imagination, is virtually incomprehensible to the very people who 
are supposed to work the new system. Why a new local bodies system 
was necessary when a perfectly good one existed already is again 
beyond me. I suppose when you establish such a pompous-sounding 
agency like the NRB those put in charge feel they have to produce 
something grand. While I respect its head, General Naqvi, I'm 
afraid I simply don't see how his plan will lay the foundation for 
a brave new Pakistan.

One big problem with the concept is that it attempts to 
administratively detach the district from the provincial 
government. By involving the central government in district 
administration, the plan strikes at the very heart of provincial 
autonomy. Ultimately, the blueprint produced by the NRB ensures 
that there will be constant tension between the federal and the 
provincial governments.

Then, by declaring that these elections will be on a non-party 
basis this government has effectively reduced the participation 
level. Traditionally, political parties have brought out voters in 
Pakistan. In the currently planned exercise, candidates will be 
vetted, and those with declared party affiliations will be 
disbarred. Thus, an entire layer of political workers will be 
prevented from contesting the elections. Unknown faces with no 
party ties will find it difficult to motivate voters, and I can 
foresee a very low turnout.

Then there is the whole business of ensuring that candidates are 
'morally sound'. What does this mean, and who will pronounce on 
such a tricky issue? To me it smacks of an attempt to keep 
independent minded people out of the fray. In the last few months, 
General Naqvi has been touring the country to sell his devolution 
plan, and at a breakfast meeting, I pointed out to him that in 
recent elections, the ISI and the army have admitted to indulging 
in fairly blatant rigging. What assurance did we have that they 
would not similarly try to fix the results to suit themselves? The 
good general solemnly assured me that this would not happen. With 
the same solemnity, I am passing on his assurance to readers.

Perhaps the biggest problem inherent in the scheme is that it has 
been rejected and roundly condemned by all the major political 
parties. Although the army can ram the plan through while it is in 
power, it is difficult to see how these local bodies will continue 
functioning after national and provincial elections are held by 
October 2002, as mandated by the Supreme Court. Why should 
popularly elected political governments finance and support local 
bodies created under a military government? When General Pervez 
Musharraf was asked this question a few months ago, he said in 
effect that the army would make sure that this system stayed intact 
even after the army had gone back to the barracks. I am not wholly 
convinced that having this permanent bone of contention between the 
defence forces and the civilian government is a good idea. A scheme 
without support from any significant political party is doomed to 
failure in the long run.

None of this should be taken to mean that I oppose the growth of 
democratic institutions at the grassroots level. Far from it. I 
think our politicians have bypassed and generally ignored local 
councils because they found them inconvenient with the result that 
they have failed to take root. But I am far from convinced that the 
answer lies in discarding the previous system and replacing it with 
a complicated, cumbersome scheme that has not found acceptance in 
any quarter.The army high command has to realize that just because 
they (and most of us as well) are dissatisfied with the performance 
of our politicians, the remedy does not lie in trying to pervert 
the political process in order to eliminate them and render the 
entire class irrelevant. Like it or not, politics is an integral 
part of the life of any progressive, vibrant society. By 
artificially trying to suppress it, bypass it or marginalize it by 
any method, the army destroys viable institutions without replacing 
them with any sustainable ones. This is the problem we have been 
facing under various military governments, and is one reason why we 
are where we are today. Each time a new junta is in power, it seeks 
to neutralize politicians and replace them with a pliable crew of 
the army's choosing. Unfortunately, these people are unacceptable 
to voters.

Instead of tinkering with political matters of which the generals 
have little experience, the junta would do far better to try and 
fix things like electricity and water supplies. Alas, its 
performance in these fields is also far from satisfactory. So 
perhaps the army should stay in the barracks, and when needed, at 
the border. If it is absolutely forced to intervene, it should play 
a purely caretaker role with a clear timeframe and an exit 
strategy. Above all, it should not try and reinvent the wheel each 
time it is in power.


SPORTS
001118
-------------------------------------------------------------------
Saqlain scoops career best 8 wickets in first test match
-------------------------------------------------------------------
Samiul Hasan

LAHORE, Nov 17: Saqlain Mushtaq missed a possible chance of picking 
up a 'perfect 10' while Pakistan had their tail between their legs 
against England at stumps on the third day of the first cricket 
Test at the Qadhafi Stadium on Friday.

Saqlain captured all the eight wickets that fell and improved his 
previous best innings figures of six for 46 against Australia in 
the Hobart Test last season.

But he was denied the chance of taking a shot at the remaining two 
as the tourists declared their first innings at the lunch score of 
480 for eight. The 23-year-old spin wizard finished conceding 164 
runs from 74 marathon overs - the most he has bowled in an innings.

When fading light, which improved after the teams had left, stopped 
play with eight overs still to be bowled, Pakistan had reached 119 
for the loss of both the openers.

Salim Elahi (15) and Inzamam-ul-Haq (11) will resume Pakistan's 
long struggle on Saturday morning when play starts 30 minutes 
earlier to compensate for the lost time.

Pakistan are now battling for survival as all their hopes and big 
claims to proceed to Faisalabad with a 1-0 lead now look out of 
question. England can only lose from this point if they bowl really 
poorly and bat horribly in the second innings.

For Pakistan, the most important thing now is to reach 281 so that 
they can avert the anomaly of batting again in the match. They 
still require 162 which will not be as simple as it looks because 
the pitch is not conducive to stroke-play and Pakistan batsmen love 
to play their shots which can end in disaster as in the case of 
Shahid Afridi. He scored 52 off 68 balls with six fours and a six.

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001115
-------------------------------------------------------------------
Slow bowlers expected to dominate the proceedings
-------------------------------------------------------------------
Samiul Hasan 

LAHORE, Nov 14: Pakistan are set to entangle England in a spin web 
in the first cricket Test which begins here from Wednesday at the 
Qadhafi Stadium. 

Besides the champion spin duo of Saqlain Mushtaq and Mushtaq Ahmad, 
Pakistan are certain to play leggie Shahid Afridi and award Test 
cap to Muridke's 18-year-old Qaisar Abbas to utilize his services 
as a left-arm spinner on a wicket which confirms that slow bowlers 
will dominate the Test. 

Before a ball has been bowled, cracks are visible on the surface. 
With the base of the strip appearing to be soft, the cracks are 
certain to get wider with progress of the game. To say that the 
wicket displays an ugly patch on a picturesque stadium would not be 
an understatement. 

Strategically, Pakistan has done the right thing to utilize the 
home advantage and prepare a wicket in accordance with their 
strength and the opposition's weakness. England are not only 
notoriously known for being vulnerable against quality spinners but 
also they don't possess spinners who could pose a threat to the 
Pakistan stroke-makers. 

Pakistan won the Lahore Test in the 1987-88 series through Abdul 
Qadir (9-56, still the best figures by a Pakistani bowler in a Test 
innings), who grabbed 13 scalps in Pakistan's innings and 87-run 
win. The remaining seven wickets were shared by the other two 
spinners - offie Tauseef Ahmed and the slow left-armer Iqbal Qasim. 

"Its a good flat surface and will potentially spin and keep low, 
this will be our biggest test for a long time," England captain 
Nasser Hussain realises what lay ahead for his team. 

The tourists will be hard pressed to match Pakistani "tweakers" 
through left-armer Ashley Giles and leg-spinner Ian Salisbury. But 
the two have yet to put up a performance to cause flutter in the 
Pakistan camp. 

In the two first-class matches leading up to the first Test, Giles 
has picked just six wickets conceding 128 runs while Salisbury has 
also bagged four wickets at the cost of 143 runs. The experience of 
the two Englishmen at the highest level is also not enough to give 
the visitors supporters any realistic chance in this Test. The two 
share 20 wickets from 13 Tests as compared to Mushtaq-Saqlain 
combination who share 297 wickets between from 76 Tests. 

England captain Nasser Hussain said his team was not here to make 
complains against pitches. "It has cracks, looks dry. But I will 
not call it a bad pitch. We get some pitches like this in England. 

"It definitely looks a two-spinner pitch but I have heard Pakistan 
are playing four." 

Hussain said it would be the test of character and ability of the 
England players to perform in this country and we look forward to 
this challenge," Hussain vowed. 

While Hussain said toss would play the vital role in the outcome of 
the match with the captain making the right call would bat first, 
his opposite number Moin Khan said he was not concerned about the 
toss at all. 

"Tosses were crucial in the one-dayers. Test cricket is a different 
ball game. 

"Whether we bat first or last, we will play real hard and positive 
cricket. We are in a proper frame of mind and the confidence of the 
boys is sky-high after a come-from-behind victory in the one-day 
series. 

"Of course we are favourites. Although I am not here to match 
player-by-player but the truth is that I have an experienced and 
well-balanced side. I have spin bowling options, good depth in the 
batting. As a captain, I don't have any scares in any areas of the 
game." 

Pakistan go into the Test as firm favourites because of the variety 
in their bowling. It would not be an overstatement but Pakistan has 
the bowling which can dismiss the opposition twice. The same cannot 
be said about England. 

Although Moin Khan said Pakistan might feel some pressure after 
three series defeats in a trot, "the positive thing is that we have 
not lost any of the five previous rubbers against England." 

Pakistan's biggest enemy in this game will not be England but 
complacency. 

Pakistan batting will once again be spearheaded by experienced trio 
of Saeed Anwar, Inzamam-ul-Haq and Yousuf Youhana while Shahid 
Afridi, Salim Elahi and debutant Qaisar Abbas will just try to play 
around under the wings of the three seasoned campaigners. 

On paper, England comprise a more formidable batting line-up in 
Michael Atherton, Marcus Trescothick, Nasser Hussain, Graham 
Thorpe, Graeme Hick and Alec Stewart. 

Wednesday will be a big day for Qaisar Abbas. The teenager has the 
skill, temperament and confidence to play in big matches. Many 
might object to putting him on a turning track, but the fact is 
that even if he scores around 30-40 runs he should be rated as a 
good player. 

The great advantage of having player like Qaisar in the team is 
being a left-hander who can disturb the line of the bowler. Need 
not to say that he is a left-arm spinner who gives more punch to 
the Pakistan bowling. Qaisar is expected to play the same role that 
Aamir Sohail once did. 

Because of shorter days here, the day's play has been reduced from 
90 overs to 83 overs. However, it is highly unlikely if 83 overs 
will be bowled because of expected late start owing to heavy 
morning dew and early sunset. 

DWS*DWS*DWS*DWS*DWS*DWS*DWS*DWS*DWS*DWS*DWS*DWS*DWS*DWS*DWS*DWS*DWS
001114
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Miandad pulls out of selection body 
-------------------------------------------------------------------
Samiul Hasan 

LAHORE, Nov 13: Pakistan coach Javed Miandad has withdrawn as co-
opted member of the national selection committee. Miandad, the 
former captain, said he has conveyed his decision to the chairman 
of the selectors Wasim Bari. He, however, said he was available to 
serve as tour selection committee boss. 

"I was called to attend the meeting on Monday. But I communicated 
my decision to Wasim Bari," Miandad said. 

He said he was withdrawing from the panel because he didn't want to 
be targeted as promoting individuals, indirectly hinting at his 
nephew Faisal Iqbal who has been wrongly targeted for getting 
support from his great uncle. 

"I am not interested in taking criticism for selecting certain 
individuals who didn't merit a place in the team. Although I am 
just a co-opted member, the general feeling is that I was calling 
the shots," Pakistan's leading run-getter in Tests said. 

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