Here’s what’s happening across the border: Chief justice of Pakistan admits he failed to put the house in order; Shah Rukh Khan’s cousin withdraws from assembly elections.
Lahore High Court issues notice to journalist in treason case
Dawn newspaper’s Cyril Almeida was issued notice by Lahore High Court Friday in the case of treason against former prime ministers Nawaz Sharif and Shahid Khaqan Abbasi, reported Dunya News. A notice was issued to both Almeida and Sharif, as they failed to appear before a three-member bench The News reported. The case pertains to the interview that the ousted prime minister, Sharif gave to Almeida where he reportedly admitted that the terrorists who participated in 26/11 were Pakistanis.
The case also impugns Abbasi who allegedly disclosed minutes of the National Security Council’s meeting to Nawaz as a clear violation of his oath of office. On Abbasi’s request, the case was deferred to 10 September.
‘Not the right time for grey-listing Pakistan’
Financial Action Task Force (FATF) made a mistake by putting Pakistan on the grey list at a time when an interim government is in power, said the editorial, Dawn. The piece speculated FATF’s decision as geopolitical consideration of US and India, and that it has put the caretaker government in an impossible position of “answering for policy matters that it does not have a mandate for”.
The article also mentioned suggestions like increasing the number of prosecutions and convictions for terror-financing and money-laundering offences rather than the mere passing of laws. “International bodies must also recognise Pakistan’s successes and help it in its fight against militancy,” it said.
The international watchdog had recently put the South Asian country formally on its grey list, after its six days plenary meet in Paris.
CJP Nisar says he failed to put the house in order
Chief justice of Pakistan (CJP) Mian Saqib Nisar admitted Thursday that he failed to put the house in order while hearing a petition on judicial reforms that was filed by five lawyers, reported Dawn.
“I openly admit that I have been unable to put the house in order,” said CJP Nisar during the hearing. Nisar said this in reference to a recent incident when he went to Larkana district for inspecting the district courts, which also lead to additional district and sessions judge Gul Zamir Solangi to resign.
During the visit, CJP Nissar flung Judge Solangi’s phone on the desk in anger, asking the judge to keep his phone in his chamber and not in the courtroom, as reported Dawn. After this incident, Karachi Bar Association expressed its dismay over the Solangi’s public humiliation and called upon the CJP to urgently convene a full court meeting of the apex court to redress the repercussions of the incident.
Shah Rukh Khan’s cousin Noor jahan withdraws from assembly elections
Bollywood superstar Shah Rukh Khan’s cousin Noor Jahan, who had filed her nomination papers for the PK-77 constituency of Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa Assembly earlier this month, is no longer contesting the elections, reported The Express Tribune.
Jahan withdrew her nomination papers Friday saying “I’ve withdrawn my nomination papers on request of my party.” Jahan’s family has an old association with Awami National Party (ANP), as her grandparents were followers of the Khudai Khidmatgar movement of Ghaffar Khan, the grandfather of ANP chief Asfandyar Wali Khan.
“ANP leaders frequently visited my place with a request to withdraw my candidature in favour of the party’s candidate for the seat, Umer Mohmand,” She told the newspaper.
Christians at the receiving end
In Quetta, among the majority of Pakhtun settlement is a Christian colony of four acres called Bashirabad. In his feature in Dawn, Muhammad Akbar Notezai explains how until recently, “the entire area was nothing more than fields, with no one except the Christian community as its only inhabitants”.
The colony was built by Gen. Ziaul Haq, sixth president of Pakistan, in 1988 and was initially spread across 11 acres. As soon as the construction was over Christian families flocked to their new residences from all over the city. Currently, at one end of the colony, there are 24 residential quarters for homeless Christians. “Outsiders [non-Christians] took most of our land away by intimidating us,” told Arif Gill, a resident of Bashirabad told the author.
Gill further explained that most of the residents came from Punjab but they are “not recognised as being from here. Not on paper and certainly not in government records.”
‘Election posters, banners must be made according to permitted size’
Yusuf Khattak, the Sindh Election Commissioner told media that as long as the banners and posters of political parties and candidates are made according to the permitted size, they will not be removed, reported Dawn.
Khattak spoke to the media after a meeting with the delegation consisting of representatives from some political parties alerted their concerns regarding the removal of their banners and posters from various areas ahead of the 2018 Elections.
The delegation comprised of Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP), the Jamaat-e-Islami (JI), the Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) and some other parties, reported The News.
Khattak assured that the delegation’s request would be conveyed to the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP).
Contributors: Priyamvada Grover, Hansa Kapoor, Manisha Mondal, Prateek Gupta and Rupanwita Bhattacharjee.