National articles

Ad hoc appointments – SCBA, PBC tell CJP they are worried

Ad hoc appointments – SCBA, PBC tell CJP they are worried

ISLAMABAD – Supreme Court Bar Association (SCBA) President Asma Jahangir and Pakistan Bar Council (PBC) Vice Chairman Latif Afridi on Friday held a meeting with Chief Justice of Pakistan Iftikhar Muhammad Chaudhry and apprised him about their reservations over a recent full court meeting of the Supreme Court that decided to appoint two retired Supreme Court judges on an ad hoc basis.
Talking to reporters later, Asma said that they had “apprised the CJP about their reservations

FIA DG dodges axe, PM sends 8 others packing

ISLAMABAD – Acting upon the orders of the Supreme Court, Prime Minister Yousaf Raza Gilani sacked eight high-ranking contractual government officials. However, the notification for sacking Federal Investigation Agency Director General Wasim Ahmed, also a contractual officer, was not issued until the filing of this report.
The court had recently ordered the government to review the appointments made in government departments on contractual basis. Establishment Division Secretary

Troika endorses ‘blood money’ deal

ISLAMABAD – Pakistan’s top leadership on Friday endorsed the “blood money deal” between American citizen Raymond Davis, arrested for killing two Pakistanis in Lahore, and relatives of the victims for ending the diplomatic row with the United States.
Prime Minister Yousaf Raza Gilani called on President Asif Ali Zardari at the Presidency. “Chief of Army Staff General Ashfaq Kayani was also present during the meeting,” said an official statement issued after the high-level talks.

LHC orders action against consulate driver

LAHORE – The Lahore High Court on Friday ordered the Punjab Police to take action in accordance with the law against the US Consulate driver who ran over a citizen, Ibadur Rahman, while ostensibly trying to rescue Raymond Davis.
While hearing a petition by Ijazul Rehman, the deceased’s brother, seeking free and fair investigation into the matter, LHC Chief Justice Ijaz Ahmed Chaudhry also asked authorities to record the statements of the complainant (Ijazul Rehman) and

Politics of reconciliation – Nawaz, Shahbaz not on the same page

LAHORE – Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) chief Nawaz Sharif and Punjab Chief Minister Shahbaz Sharif apparently have a different stance on their future political strategy, with the PML-N chief aspiring to continue politics of reconciliation in the larger national interest and Shahbaz proposing the exact opposite.
In a meeting with a delegation of the Pakistan Business Council on Friday, Shahbaz exploded unprovoked when Nawaz talked about continuing politics of

SC slaps gag order on PCO judges

ISLAMABAD – The Supreme Court on Friday restrained the dysfunctional PCO judges from passing any order against members of the bench hearing contempt cases against them or any other judge of the Supreme Court.
A seven-member bench headed by Chief Justice Iftikhar Muhammad Chaudhry was hearing intra-court appeals by two PCO judges of the Lahore High Court – Justice Shabbar Raza Rizvi and Justice Hasnat Ahmed Khan, requesting the court to overturn its February 2 decision of charging

Don’t play to ‘galleries’: PM

ISLAMABAD – Reacting to the outburst by Shah Mehmood Qureshi on Thursday, Prime Minister Yousaf Raza Gilani advised him to observe party discipline and be loyal to the party rather than “playing to the galleries”. Addressing the new cabinet members, Gilani said, “Our doors are open to anyone who believes in the party policy and discipline. It is Zulfikar Ali Bhutto and Benazir Bhutto’s party, of which we are proud members. The party has made us what we are today. Let’s be guided by

Firdous rules out Davis’ facilitation under Diyat law

ISLAMABAD – Federal Minister for Information Firdous Ashiq Awan on Thursday ruled out any facilitation by the federal government in clinching a covert deal between the families of the two Pakistani youths killed by Raymond Davis under Qisas and Diyat laws.
“The Punjab government can facilitate both the parties for an out-of-court settlement (under Qasis and Diyat provisos), not the PPP. Moreover, we don’t have a culture of handing over Pakistani nationals to US authorities. We

Unanimous agenda will save country, says Shujaat

ISLAMABAD – Pakistan Muslim League-Quaid (PML-Q) president Chaudhry Shujaat Hussain on Thursday said that an All Parties Committee should be constituted to formulate a unanimous national agenda for bringing economic stability in the country.
He floated the proposal in his meeting with a delegation of Pakistan Business Forum which called on him at his residence. Shujaat said that people from all strata of life should play their role to bring economic stability in the country. He

Two more PCO judges file intra-court appeals against contempt orders

ISLAMABAD – Former de-facto chief justice of Pakistan, Abdul Hameed Dogar, and dysfunctional PCO judge of Sindh High Court Yasmin Abbasey on Thursday filed intra-court appeals in the Supreme Court seeking setting aside of its earlier short order of initiating contempt proceedings against them from February 21.
Earlier on February 15, Justice (r) Iftikhar Hussain, former LHC chief justice had filed an intra-court appeal in the Supreme Court seeking setting aside of its earlier

Emulating ZAB sans his substance

NEWS ANALYSIS – Shah Mehmood Qureshi finally broke his silence on the issue of Raymond Davis with a demeanour of a demagogue, emulating Zulfikar Ali Bhutto who had parted ways with his mentor President Ayub Khan after developing differences on the (now former) Soviet Union-mediated peace agreement between Pakistan and India in Tashkent.
Though the two situations are quite similar to draw an analogy between what Bhutto did and what Qureshi appears to be accomplishing politically,

SC orders security for FIA ADG

ISLAMABAD – The Supreme Court on Thursday directed the attorney general to talk to the government to provide complete protection to the FIA additional director general, who is leading the probe into the NICL scam and facing life threats. A four-member bench comprising Chief Justice Iftikhar Muhammad Chaudhry, Justice Muhammad Sair Ali, Justice Ghulam Rabbani and Justice Khalilur Rehman Ramday, was hearing a suo motu case against violation of Public Procurement Rules, 2004, causing

Davis issue must not affect ties with US: president, PM

ISLAMABAD – President Asif Ali Zardari and Prime Minister Yousaf Raza Gilani told the visiting US Senator John Kerry that the Raymond Davis issue was complex, having several dimensions, but it must not be allowed to take bilateral relations hostage.
They expressed these views during their separate meetings with Senator Kerry, chairman of the US Senate foreign relations committee, who called on President Asif Ali Zardari at the Presidency and Gilani at the PM House on

Pak-US relations ‘very complicated’, says CIA chief

WASHINGTON – Director of the Central Intelligence Agency Leon Panetta has said that the United States has a very complicated relationship with Pakistan and both the countries often have conflicting view points on various issues.
“I have to tell you that it (US-Pakistan) is very complicated and it does involve oftentimes conflicting viewpoints of how we deal with issues,” Panetta told lawmakers at a Congressional hearing of the US Senate Select Committee on Intelligence. The

Inept govt complicated Davis affair: Nawaz

ISLAMABAD – Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) chief Nawaz Sharif on Thursday said that federal government’s incompetence was to blame for making the Raymond Davis affair more complicated.
“Had the government taken timely and tangible stance on Raymond Davis issue, the situation would not have been so much complex”, he observed. He was speaking to journalists after a meeting with US Senator John Kerry here on Thursday Sharif said that within the 36 hours of the Lahore shootings

Heirs of Raymond’s victims swear not to compromise

LAHORE – The families of three deceased young men, who became victims of American National Raymond Davis and his friend’s killing spree in Qartaba Chowk located near Mozang Area on Jan 27, have completely refused to accept any compensation less than death sentence to the culprits.
Faheem’s family showed their aggressions to the US Government by refusing to allow the American Consulate to fix a meeting with American Senator John Kerry, who wanted to express grief on Faheem’s

Ramday, Jafferi’s reappointment is unconstitutional: PBC

ISLAMABAD – In a unanimous resolution on Thursday, the executive committee of the Pakistan Bar Council (PBC) held the move of considering reappointment of Justice Khalilur Rehman Ramday, who retired on February 17 and Justice Rahmat Hussain Jafferi, who retired a few months ago, in violation of Article 182 of the constitution as amended under the 19th Amendment.
The meeting, chaired by executive committee Chairman Asrarul Haq Mian and co-chaired by Abdul Lateef Afridi, the PBC