NAECHS scam – sacking of 2 officers recommended

NAECHS scam – sacking of 2 officers recommended

ISLAMABAD – The special parliamentary committee probing National Assembly Employees Cooperative Housing Society (NAECHS) scam has recommended termination of two top officials of the National Assembly Secretariat from service for their involvement in NAECHS scam.
These sacked officers, Deputy Secretary Tariq Ayub Khakwani and Joint Secretary Shahid Jilani, were already under suspension, Pakistan Today learnt reliably.
The special committee gave these recommendations in its

NGO providing medical aid in flood-hit areas

LAHORE – The Merlin is an international medical aid organsation, known for delivering emergency medical aid and reviving health services. With an experience of aid work in the 2005 earthquake-hit areas, Merlin also is providing the much needed medical assistance to people in the areas ravaged by the last July’s floods.
A press statement issued here on Tuesday said Merlin has been implementing essential health services to over two million people in Kashmir, Balochistan, the

Pakistan ready to evacuate its nationals from Cairo

ISLAMABAD – Pakistan on Tuesday reiterated that its nationals in Egypt would be evacuated if the situation deteriorated further there and that the arrangements were all set in this regard.
“Pakistan’s embassy in Cairo is closely monitoring the situation evolving in Egypt. If required, and on the information of our embassy, an aircraft would be dispatched to evacuate the Pakistani nationals,” Foreign Office spokesman Abdul Basit said here Tuesday.
He said the Pakistan embassy

Parliamentary body endorses JCP nominations of 2 judges

ISLAMABAD – The parliamentary committee set up for judges’ appointment on Tuesday confirmed Judicial Commission of Pakistan’s nominations of Sindh High Court judges including Sarmad Jalal Osmany and Justice Amir Hani Muslim as permanent judges of the Supreme Court.
The parliamentary committee which met here with Senator Nayyar hussain Bokhari in the chair also endorsed JCP’s nomination of Mushir Alam, the most senior judge of the SHC, as the new chief justice of the Sindh High

Benazir’s murder case – court extends custody of accused cops

RAWALPINDI – The Anti-Terrorist Court (ATC) hearing the Benazir Bhtuuo’s assassination case on Tuesday sent former City Police Officer (CPO) Saud Aziz and Superintendent of Police (SP) Khurram Shahzad on a 14-day judicial remand.
The Federal Investigation Agency (FIA), after completing investigation, produced both the accused police officers in the court of ATC judge Rana Nisar Ahmed, who rejected their bail plea and sent them on remand. The court fixed next hearing on February

CII forms body to oversee salaries of devolved ministries’ employees

ISLAMABAD – The Council of Common Interest (CCI) on Tuesday formed a committee headed by secretary finance to devise mechanism for payment of salaries to the employees of all the ministries devolved to the provinces. Finance Secretary Dr Waqar Masood told journalists that the committee was constituted to workout financial impact in terms of salaries of the employees.
He said the issue of subsidy on agricultural tube wells as well as privatization of generation and distribution

Embattled Mubarak says he won’t run for another term

CAIRO – Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak said on Tuesday he would not leave Egypt although he would step down from the Presidency at the end of his term, due to end when the country holds a presidential election in September.
He also said pledged to implement a series of reforms, including calling on the judiciary to combat corruption, adding that he would seek changes to the constitution. However, TV channels reported that the protesters reiterated their demands that President

RS 5bn NICL scam – 2 fake accounts of Rs 320m detected, SC told

ISLAMABAD – The Federal Investigation Agency (FIA) informed the Supreme Court on Tuesday that it had detected fake accounts opened by Muhammad Maalik, manager of Moonis Elahi’s Al-Tahoor Company.
A four-member bench comprising Chief Justice Iftikhar Muhammad Chaudhry, Justice Muhammad Sair Ali, Justice Ghulam Rabbani and Justice Khalilur Rehman was hearing a suo motu case against alleged corruption of over Rs 5 billion in the National Insurance Company (NICL) affairs. FIA

Moonis is innocent: Mohsin Warraich

LAHORE – Mohsin Habib Warraich, one of the main accused in the NICL scam, has categorically said in a statement duly attested by the Pakistan High Commission that Moonis Elahi has nothing to do with the NICL deal and transactions.
Mohsin Warraich’s statement reads: “Last night I faxed a statement addressed to additional DG FIA in Islamabad in which I categorically stated that the entire sale proceeds of the transaction with the NICL amounting to Rs 1.68 billion, had been duly

Afghan war winnable without Pakistan help: US general

WASHINGTON – NATO-led forces can still win the war in Afghanistan even if Pakistan fails to move against militant havens on the border, a top US general said on Tuesday. “That’s not a mission stopper in my mind,” General David Rodriguez, deputy US commander in Afghanistan, told a Pentagon news conference.
US officials have long pressed Islamabad to crack down on the Haqqani network and other militants based in North Waziristan, saying the insurgents exploit the area as a

Zardari to decide cabinet’s fate

ISLAMABAD – The PPP core committee on Wednesday authorised President Asif Ali Zardari to take any decision to right-size or dissolve the federal cabinet. A PPP source told Pakistan Today that the meeting also concluded that the government should let the law take its course over the issue of US citizen Raymond Davis and it was decided that since the matter was sub-judice, everyone should wait for the court verdict over the issue.
Addressing the participants, Zardari said the

PM’s advice binding on president, says SC

ISLAMABAD – The Supreme Court on Tuesday observed that the prime minister’s advice on the appointment of the National Accountability Bureau (NAB) chairman was binding on the president. A four-member bench of Justice Javed Iqbal, Justice Tassaduq Hussain Jillani, Justice Raja Fayyaz Ahmed and Justice Asif Saeed Khosa, was hearing petitions challenging the appointment of Justice (r) Deedar Hussain Shah as NAB chairman.
Counsel for the federation, Abdul Hafeez Pirzada, submitted

Millions join Egypt’s day of anger

CAIRO – At least one million people rallied across Egypt on Tuesday clamouring for President Hosni Mubarak to give up power, piling pressure on a leader who has towered over Middle East politics for 30 years to make way for a new era of democracy in the Arab nation.
Cairo’s Tahrir Square was jammed with people ranging from lawyers and doctors to students and jobless poor, the crowd spilling into surrounding streets. Crowds also demonstrated in Alexandria, Suez and in the Nile

PML-N shows flexibility, MQM refuses to budge on RGST

ISLAMABAD – The International Monetary Fund (IMF) team on Tuesday held separate meetings with the PML-N and MQM to garner support for the implementation of the reformed general sales tax (RGST) at the federal and provincial levels.
The IMF team, consisting of Middle East and Central Asia Department Director Masood Ahmed, Mission Chief for Pakistan Adnan Mazarei and Resident Representative Paul Ross, held talks with PML-N and MQM leaders. Both parties linked their support to

LHC blocks moves to hand over Davis

LAHORE/ISLAMABAD – As the United States again called for the release of Raymond Davis, the American ‘diplomat’ accused of killing two young men, saying that he acted in legitimate self-defence, the Lahore High Court (LHC) on Tuesday blocked any move to free Davis, and put his name on the Exit Control List.
“I am restraining him (from being handed over to US authorities). Whether he has or does not have (diplomatic) immunity will be decided by the court,” ruled LHC CJ Ijaz Ahmed

Three power transformers stolen

FAISALABAD – A group of thieves, posing as Faisalabad Electric Supply Company (FESCO) employees, stole three transformers from separate places. The transformers were stolen from Samanabad, Guttwala and Madina Town while FESCO has failed to trace the gang. An average transformer costs Rs 500,000 while the thieves are strealing them just to dismantle the unit and take out the copper wire from it.
The sources said the copper wire of each transformer was sold in scrap market for a

Traffic police launches ‘Roshan Punjab’ campaign

FAISALABAD – The city traffic police in coordination with Honda Atlas Company started a traffic awareness programme titled ‘Roshan Punjab campaign’ for motor cyclists. The safety campaign was started to convey a message to motorcyclists that they should not risk their life or the life of others by riding a motorcycle with faulty lights at night.
The campaign sponsored by Honda Atlas offered motorcyclists to bring their motorcycles with faulty lights at the Honda camp at