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Noor Alam wants high-level briefing in NA over rising terrorist activities

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Noor Alam wants high-level briefing in NA over rising terrorist activities

Noor Alam Khan, chairman of the Public Accounts Committee, has criticised the coalition government for growing terrorism in the country, saying that unless there is bloodshed in Lahore or Punjab, no one will take it seriously. 

Speaking during the session of the National Assembly, Noor Alam said at least 100 people were martyred in his city’s Red Zone. “For the past 25-30 years, we have only condemned the attacks, but who is responsible for this terrorism in the country?” he asked. 

The dissident PTI lawmaker said he was not allowed by security personnel to enter the Red Zone area in Peshawar without proving his identity. “I am stopped even if I am in official vehicle, I feel humiliated and consider myself a second-class citizen of Pakistan,” he lamented. 

“Afghans are roaming everywhere, and Pakistanis are facing difficulties and are being asked to show their identity cards,” he claimed.  

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Mr Khan further said the people of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa were always on the front line against terrorism. The KP people were being martyred on a daily basis while the assembly members were busy gossiping, he added.  

He said, “We are dying because of your policies, and you should have called the Chief of Army Staff to brief the house on who was carrying out terror activities in the country.”

 “I want to ask the question to this house and the owners of the country: What is being done with us? What is our sin?”  

He said the economy was in tatters, the US dollar had reached Rs275, and Finance Minister Ishaq Dar refused to attend the assembly session.

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President Alvi confers awards on high achievers on momentous day

President Alvi confers awards on high achievers on momentous day

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President Alvi confers awards on high achievers on momentous day

President Dr Arif Alvi on Thursday conferred civil honours upon various personalities, including foreign nationals, for their contributions in different fields at an investiture ceremony at Aiwan-i-Sadr on Pakistan Day. 

Prominent among those who were conferred with the civil awards are senior journalist Mujeebur Rehman Shami, social worker Ramzan Cheepa, renowned scholar Dr Anees Ahmed, Sindh Governor Kamran Tessori and Inspector General of Islamabad Police Dr Akbar Nasir Khan.

The late poet Amjad Islam Amjad, Saghir Siddique, Sufi Ghulam Mustafa Tabassum, Justice retired Rana Bhagwan Das, actor Qavi Khan and others were among those honoured posthumously at the investiture ceremony.

Squash legends Jahangir Khan and Jan Sher Khan, Sartaj Aziz, Mir Hasil Bizenjo and Ahmed Ghulam Ali Chagla have also been conferred with awards.

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The president also bestowed Tamgha-e-Shujaat on martyred Amir Nawaz Khan, martyred Muhammad Kamran, retired Col Muhammad Arif, Muhammad Usman Shehbaz, Dr Kamran Ahmed, Sher Ahmed, Tanveer Hussain, Amjad Ahmed, Mazhar Nawaz Sheikh, Frontier Constabulary’s Zeeshan Ahmed, Naveed Ahmed, Ziaur Rehman and martyred Javedullah while Muhammad Bilal Raja, Mubashir Saleem, Minhas Ahmed Khan and Ijaz Hafeez were also honoured at the ceremony.

Similar ceremonies were also held at the Governor Houses in Punjab, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and Balochistan. Punjab Governor Baligur Rehman conferred Sitara-e-Imtiaz on Pakistan skipper Babar Azam and others.

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Miftah blames Dar for sabotaging IMF deal

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Blaming Finance Minister Ishaq Dar for sabotaging the deal, PML-N leader Miftah Ismail claimed that International Monetary Fund (IMF) was not interested in releasing money to Pakistan as the Washington-based lender had no trust in Islamabad government.

Speaking during a session titled ‘Pakistan in the Midst of Crisis’ organised by a private university in Karachi, former finance minister said when he was heading the Ministry of Finance he spoke to the IMF officials and assured them that Paki¬stan would not make false statements or violate the agreement; however, when Ishar Dar was sworn in ‘he sabotaged the agreement’.

He recalled that Pakistan had three times made sovereign commitments and then backtracked on them. “Now the IMF is not interested in giving money to Pakistan,” he said, emphasising that the Fund doesn’t trust the government in Islamabad.

Pakistan continues to woo the International Monetary Fund (IMF) to secure the much-needed bailout from the global lender. Pakistan is now the only South Asian country that’s yet to secure a bailout from the multilateral lender as Sri Lanka clinched financing this week and Bangladesh pushes on with carrying out IMF-mandated reforms.

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Pakistan has taken tough measures including increasing taxes and energy prices, and allowing its currency to weaken to restart a $6.5 billion IMF loan package. The funds will offer some relief to a nation still reeling from a dollar shortage that has raised the probability of the economy slipping into a recession ahead of elections this year.

Regarding the petrol relief subsidy announced by the government on Sunday, Miftah said that he believed this formula would not be effective. “We provide subsidies on petrol by taking loans,” he said.

Miftah warned that if Pakistan defaulted it would have grave consequences for the country as people belonging to the rich segment will bear the brunt but the poor people won’t be able to make ends meet.  

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Pakistan Day: PM Shehbaz sees economic instability, political chaos as major challenges

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Pakistan Day: PM Shehbaz sees economic instability, political chaos as major challenges

Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif said on Thursday the nation should not lose sight of the challenges staring it in the face.  

“The challenges are topped by a combination of economic instability and the inability to settle the rules of the game. An environment of political chaos explains why we have failed to develop our economy on a sustainable basis,” the prime minister said in a statement issued on the eve of the Pakistan Day. “This day is also the day to renew our pledge,” he stressed.

The premier said Pakistan came into being as a result of political and constitutional struggle and its future lies in adhering to the constitution in its letter and spirit.

“I have no doubt that Pakistan is destined to achieve great heights. However, for this to become a reality, we have to forge unity in our ranks, equip ourselves with national purpose and vow to wage a struggle in line with the legacy of our forefathers,” the prime minister said in a message on Pakistan Day being observed on Thursday.

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The prime minister said the 23rd of March was an epoch-making day in their national history that reminded them of their past, invited them to ponder over the present state of affairs, and inspired them to build a prosperous future.

The prime minister said it took them back to 1940 when Muslims of the sub-continent approved a resolution for the establishment of a separate homeland they could call their own under the dynamic leadership of Quaid-i-Azam Muhammad Ali Jinnah.

Allama Muhammad Iqbal’s dream of freedom manifested itself in the form of a resolution representing Muslims’ demands, and aspirations for a separate homeland, he added.

The prime minister said the consequential seven years witnessed history in the making as the Quaid-i-Azam led a relentless struggle to translate the dream of Iqbal into reality. The establishment of Pakistan was certainly a miracle of the 20th century.

“The last seventy-five years of our journey have seen us fight many crises from wars to natural disasters. There have been many occasions when we overcame the odds and achieved many milestones,” he added.

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“Let us use this day to introspect and hold ourselves to account. Only those nations that are capable of analyzing their past, learning from their mistakes, and making amends can achieve true glory,” he added.

As a member of the international community, the prime minister said Pakistan had played the role of a responsible nation in the resolution of problems facing humanity and the establishment of global peace.

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