Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Pakistan cricket captains carry Islamic Relief forward

By Syed Khalid Mahmood

As many as four Pakistan cricket captains are proactively involved in supporting the cause of humanity by helping the Islamic Relief (IR) raise substantial funds for the under-privileged and displaced persons in the country.

The quartet of Rashid Latif, Moin Khan, Younis Khan and Shahid Afridi has been instrumental in generating funds for the IR to let them carry out their mission with renewed enthusiasm.

Three of them were in attendance in the IR’s launch of Malakand Rehabilitation Programme held at the Karachi Gymkhana on October 26. Moin Khan was unable to make it because he had to air-dash to Lahore to attend the funeral of Wasim Akram’s wife, Huma, who passed away on October 25.

Fateha was offered for the departed soul before the start of the proceedings and every speaker expressed condolences to Wasim Akram on the untimely death of his wife.

Haris Ahmed Khan, the former Pakistan Customs off-spinner turned qualified coach, has played the pivotal role in roping in the celebrated cricketers to join hands with the IR and take their noble mission forward.

Haris, in his brief speech, recalled that it didn’t take long for him to convince Rashid Latif and Moin Khan who readily agreed to be a part of the fund-raiser in the United Sates (US).

“Then we took Younis Khan and Shahid Afridi to the northern areas of the country devastated by the earthquake in October 2005. They realized the gravity of the situation after reaching there and immediately volunteered their services for the IR,” Haris stated.
Rashid Latif, a former Pakistan captain, shared his experiences at the IR, saying he’s touched after watching the destruction of the various towns by the earthquake.

“It was really very painful to walk on those rocky surfaces where hundreds of people had been buried alive just a few days ago. We took the responsibility of playing our part in helping the people in need,” Rashid remarked.

Pakistan’s Twenty20 captain, Shahid Afridi, announced that he believed in looking at life beyond cricket and it was the reason of him coming on board at the IR.

“When I visited the floods-affected areas of Balochistan I was dismayed at the sufferings of the people who were struggling for basic amenities. Even more depressing was the inaction of the government. Thankfully the IR was there and I made up my mind to contribute my bit in letting them accomplish their cherished goals,” the flamboyant all-rounder asserted.

Pakistan’s captain for Tests and One-day Internationals, Younis Khan, believed that they had to undertake the responsibility of serving the humanity, particularly those who are less fortunate, having been hit by disasters.

“As a human being it’s our duty to care for others. The IR has been doing a great job and I consider a privilege to be a part of their team. It has been hectic at times but we take pride in playing our part by participating in the fund-raisers,” Younis added.

Jalaluddin, a former Test fast bowler, has also been a motivating force in facilitating the Islamic Relief who had commenced operations in Pakistan in 1992 after having secured registration with the Security & Exchange Commission of Pakistan (SECP) as a company limited by guarantee (Local NGO). It is also registered with the Economic Affairs Division, Ministry of Finance, Government of Pakistan.

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Qaim Ali Shah announces PPP Karachi Coordination body

Sindh Chief Minister Syed Qaim Ali Shah on the recommendations of President Asif Ali Zardari has announced the names of members of the PPP Karachi Coordination Committee for the PPP Karachi Division. The members of the body include Prof. N.D.Khan, Taj Haider, Rashid Hussain Rabbani, Lal Bakhsh Bhutto, Syed Najmi Aalam, Saeed Ghani, Afaq Shahid, Haji Muzafar Shujra, Qadir Patel, Rafiq Engineer, Hakim Baloch, Farzana Baloch, Habibuddin Junaidi and Jamshed Ahmed Khan

Tuesday, October 13, 2009


Governor of Sindh Dr. Ishrat-ul-Ebad Khan has said that the newly laid network of roads and flyovers by city government Karachi has besides reducing travel duration and making it convenient for citizens also proved helpful to national economy regaining its strength. Plot owners of Landhi Cottage Industrial Zone will now get alternate plots in Orangi Town Cottage Industrial Zone.

He expressed these views while talking to media representatives at Orangi Cottage Industrial Zone on Tuesday. Earlier Governor of Sindh along with City Nazim Syed Mustafa Kamal inaugurated and laid foundation stone for three roads which have a collective cost of Rs.720million. City Government has constructed the road after cutting the hill to provide a new direct route between Orangi and North Nazimabad Town. Governor of Sindh also laid the foundation stone for two roads on which construction work has already been started. He also inspected the development works of Shahra-e-Qaddafi, Orangi Cottage Industrial Zone and Banaras Chowk Flyover during this visit.

Talking to media representatives, Governor Sindh further said that a total 4 thousand persons were allotted with plots in Orangi Cottage Industrial Zone through balloting in 1994 but they were not given possession of their plots due to unavailability of basic infrastructure including water and sewerage facility. City Government has besides carrying out other mega development works in the city also paid full attention on this cottage industrial zone and already 55 percent of infrastructure work has been completed while 3500 plot owners have also started building their factories in this zone.

Governor of Sindh said that cottage industry contributes 35 percent in the growth of any economy, however it was unfortunate that we did not encourage this industry and now I am sure that this industrial zone would begin production within a year.

He said that the owners of plots in this industrial zone are mostly belongs to lower and middle class who can’t afford to invest in big industries but can play vital role in the improvisation of national economy with their talent and products.

Replying a question Governor of Sindh said that with the rapid development process that happened in Karachi during last four years, everyone in Pakistan has this feelings that this process should continue and speed up further.

He said that considering this fact, President of Pakistan Asif Ali Zardari has given clear instructions that better strategy should be employed to carry on this development so that it could fulfill the basic aim of this process.

He said that the country was at large facing the menace of terrorism but the law and order situation in Sindh has been much better and the credit for this should go to Chief Minister Sindh and low enforcement agencies.

Replying another query Governor of Sindh said that the poor financial condition of country has also affected the city government in Karachi but City Nazim Syed Mustafa Kamal deserves all the praise for he did not let the development process to halt due to financial constraints.

He said that the federal and provincial governments have also supported the development process in Karachi.

Governor of Sindh said that it is the quality of a good manger to manage everything in all circumstances and Mustafa Kamal has this ability.

Earlier Governor of Sindh inaugurated the road which has been constructed by city government with an estimated cost of Rs280million. This one and half kilometer long road provides convenience to residents of Orangi and Baldia Town which has been constructed after cutting the hill. Governor Sind and City Nazim also laid the foundation stone of the road from Qalandria Chowk to Sakhi Hasan in North Nazimabad Town and from Qalandria Chowk kto Abdullah College with an estimated cost of Rs130million and Rs310million respectively.

Security put on red alert across Sindh

The security across Sindh especially Karachi has been put on "red-alert" following the terrorist attack on the General Headquarter Rawalpindi (GHQ), while the security agencies have been ordered to remain alert in order to avoid any untoward incident.
The police sources revealed here on Sunday, the law enforcing agencies have prepared the lists for the arrest of the activists of the banned organizations.
Sources said that these organizations include banned Sippah-e-Sahaba-e-Pakistan, Lashkar-e-Jhangvi, Sippah-e-Muhammad, Jash-e-Muhammad, Harak-ul-Jihad-e-Islami, Jindullah Group (Haji Mumtaz alias Hamza Group), Jandullah group (Amjid Farooqi Group), Harakat ul Mujahideen and several others banned organizations.
Sources added that the security agencies have been ordered for the search of the workers of the above mentioned banned organizations in Landhi, Malir, Korangi, Model Colony, Shah Faisal Colony, Sherpao Colony, Future Colony, Millat Colony, Mungho Pir areas of Karachi.
While on the other hand, the security has been put on red alert of all sensitive building and installations including Sindh Assembly, Sindh High Court including Red Zone, Corps Commander Office, Navel and Air Force Office, Sindh Home Department, Central Jail Police Office, Garden Headquarter and Police Training Centre.

Sunday, October 11, 2009

International Letter Writing Competition

Foundation for the Drug Free World, USA, is working for the cause of promoting drug awareness programs worldwide. The main motive of this non-profit organization is to organize events throughout the world for creating a healthy society. Eradicating drug abuse from Pakistan from the grass root level and to aware youth about drugs is the purpose of Drug Free World in Pakistan.

Foundation for a Drug Free World recently organized letter writing competition, in which students and individuals from all parts of Pakistan wrote a letter to President Zardari to ban drugs in public buses and at public parks. More than 850 students and individuals, and 560 institutions participated from Karachi, Islamabad, Kharian Cantt, Faisalabad, Rawalpindi, Murree, Lahore, Multan, Sukkur, Gujranwala, and Peshawar.

The citation for the winners was recently held at a local hotel, where the vision of PPP and Shaheed Benazir Bhutto was addressed by Pakistan coordinator, Munir Moosa Sewani. He said,

“Shaheed Benzair Bhutto always wanted to see youth living a happy and peaceful life. By arranging such competitions for the youth, we have joined our hands with Government of Pakistan to eradicate drug abuse and to create healthy environment for the coming generation.” Mr. Munir Moosa later assured the gathering to work closer with the Government of Pakistan in the upcoming years and shared his hope to contribute in formulating drug eradication programs and policies.

The selected letters were sent at Aiwan-e-Sadar to Mr. Zardari by Pakistan Coordinator for Drug Free World, Mr. Munir Moosa Sewani, in the presence of the winners. Later on, Miss Judy, Mr. Tom Pacquitte, Mr. Pascal Cottier, Mr. Munir Moosa Sewani and Miss Salima Moosa Sewani witnessed the declaration of the winners through telephonic conversation.

The names of the winners are: Sanam Shaheen from Garrison Academy, Kharian Cantt, Madiha Salman, Kausar Taighoon Shah from Aga Khan College, Serena Virani from Beacon School System, Kiran Reimoo from Aga Khan Higher Secondary School, Nimira Noorani from Aga Khan University, Institute for Educational Development and Adeel Jawed from BVS Parsi School. Cash prizes and exclusive gift hampers from Sweet Hills Company were distributed along with an International Certificate to the winners and 20 runners up by Pakistan Coordinator Munir Moosa and Regional Director, Ministry of Human Rights, Government of Pakistan, Ali Nawaz Katiar.

Assistant Coordinator, Miss Salima said that the youth being aware of the drastic consequences of drugs still they engage in such activities, which is a point to ponder.

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Paramount’s annual book fair 2009

The Paramount’s Annual Book Fair is being held in the metropolis. The organizers said that the event would continue till October 11 from 10 a.m. up to eight p.m. They said that some 65,000 titles are on display and they include books in English and Urdu on a variety of topics and disciplines including those of engineering, medical, computers as well as the general books. A discount of up to 75 percent is also available on the sale of the books, the organizers added.

Sunday, October 4, 2009

2 Policemen among 4 killed in Lyari firing

Four people were shot dead including two policemen in firing between police and criminal gangs in Lyari Kalakot area of Karachi on Sunday. Armed men attacked the police with hand grenades and killed four people among two policemen. Police recovered heavy weapons from criminals’ possession. Police also captured large quantity of weapons during raid at a godown in the locality. Police conducted raid at a godown on a tip-off, during which criminals lobbed a hand grenade and opened firing at the police party, leaving two cops dead on the spot.

Firing is still continued between the police and criminals, echoing the area with the sound of heavy firing. Armored carriers and Rangers contingents have reached in the area to assist the police. Police have seized a light machinegun, seven Kalashnikovs, two repeaters, two pistols, a grenade, eight walkie-talkies and hundreds of bullets from the godown. A bus was burnt at Rashid Mihas road by unknown men.

Saturday, October 3, 2009

Paradise lost on earth

By Sabina Rizwan Khan
Children are the symbol of hope for the future in any country. They are considered to be the next builder of nation, but unfortunately these innocent beings are at the verge of destruction as the stigma of child labour is deterioting them.

Child labour has emerged as a global phenomenon and found almost in all countries. The child labour problem has been in focus since eighties and caught the world's attention after the adoption of the of the Convention on the Rights of the child by the UN General Assembly in November 1989.

Since then various attempts have been made to control such practices but still a lot is need to be done. According to The International Programme on the Elimination of Child Labour (IPEC) of the International Labour Organisation (ILO), over 100 million boys and girls aged between 5 and 14 work as child laborers.

When we look at Pakistan, the situation seems even worse as ILO quotes:
“In Pakistan 67 % of children are said to be involved in agriculture, 11 %in the carpet sector, 5% in Brick kilns and 9 % in the wholesale and retail, followed by 8 % in community, social and personal services.”
Though the government of Pakistan has been trying to bring changes in the scenario, but no vital signs has been witnessed so far. According to the constitution of Islamic Republic of Pakistan, "No child below the age of fourteen shall be engaged in any factory or mine or in any other hazardous employment".

The constitutional aspect attached to the issue is enough to understand that how significant the matter is. But sadly it is easily being ignored. These young children are found working at street signals, pathan hotels, factories, garages, and often at homes as servants. The most tragic part is that these minors work in harsh conditions and get less amount of return.

According to UN report daily an average child give 10 to 15 hours to labour. Also, there are no safe guards for these children, if they get injured or hurt there are no compensations made. There are many in home factories working privately in Karachi, and if a child gets hard it he or she is forced to come to work the next day, because of which these children often fell ill or even loses their lives. Besides that, these children are also a victim of sexual abuse and drug addiction, which is again a big problem. On an average, in Karachi, a street child does not live up to 15 years of age.

A survey of working children in Karachi showed that they were between the ages of 12-14 years (mean = 13.91 yrs), with average family size of 7.4 members and average family income was Pak Rupees 2,884/month.12 The children had an average income of Pak Rupees 615/month (range: 200-1200). Forty five percent were helpers in shops the rest were employed in other businesses. The reasons given for job included family support (89%), parent's pressure (5%), fond of work (4%), learning skills (1%) and self support (1%). The majority (56%) was working for more than 7 hours per-day and 79% said that they do not like to work. Majority of the children wanted to study, play, be born in another family and become doctors, engineers and officers.12. (Source: Rawal Medical Journal, online)

There are numerous factors that are responsible for triggering child labour in our country:

Unequal Economic opportunities: the exploitation of less privileged people is a major factor. Socio-economically, there is an elite class that has domination on the resources and that makes the other class to suffer, especially the lower class where families are left with no other option than to send their children to work because of financial constraints.

Large families: The growing population is another issue where one bread earner cannot fulfill the requirements of ten eaters, and thus young children of the family are brought into the working scene in order to compensate.

Domestic Violence: Many children yearly runs away from their homes, for really petty issues, but it is the peer pressure especially of the parents that forces the child to take such irrational step.

Deprivation of Educational facilities: Lack of educational amenities also leaves only one option for such under privileged children that are to end up working.

Provision of low wage service: Children are often used for various services because they are a low paid service and they can be easily oppressed and tyrannize.

For girls, Parental discrimination: The biggest dilemma, where un educated parents takes the female children as the curse and often they are targeted for child labour because they are born girls where as the boy member will be regarded and are not forced to work, this practise is common in rural areas of Pakistan.

Malfunctioning of social monitoring institutions: Though there are many implementations of laws and NGO’s working for the preservation of child rights, but still nothing considerable is observed so far.
Considering the above factors that are playing a pivotal role in bringing child labour to existent, one cannot ignore the side effects it is causing:

Child labour deprives a child of his childhood.
He suffers from physical and mental torture.
He becomes mentally and emotionally mature, before his age,
Child labour creates and perpetuates poverty.
It condemns a child to a life of unskilled and unpaid life.
This gives rise to a whole generation of poor children undercutting wages.

Besides that a child misses out all the fun and amusement that any other regular child would enjoy, it is disheartening to realise that when we enjoy a McDonald burger, a child on the streets of Karachi would be looking for food in the trash cans, when any other child would be going to a school, the same age child somewhere would be preparing to leave for work, when a kid would be enjoying his safe home and his toys, somewhere a child would be sleeping on an unsafe deserted street corner waiting to sleep so that he can play in his dreams because that is the only place where he is able to do all those things which is a dream for him in reality!

It is up to us to add colours of reality to their dreams as John Fitzgerald Kennedy said:
“Children are the world's most valuable resource and its best hope for the future of any country."

Thursday, October 1, 2009

Istanbul Local Government assures all possible help in Karachi Projects

Governor of Istanbul Muammar Gualer has appreciated the excellent leadership abilities of City Nazim Syed Mustafa Kamal. During a meeting at Governor House in Istanbul he said that he felt much pleasure on meeting with Nazim Karachi. He said that Syed Mustafa Kamal is doing such a wonderful work in Karachi and how he has transformed the city and made it an international phenomenon in a very short time. He said that Nazim Karachi is a young dynamic muslim leader.

Meanwhile the local government of Istanbul has assured all possible help and cooperation in the early completion of Karachi mega projects including Mass Transit System, Solid Waste Management and Sewerage Treatment Plant. Istanbul Local Government Administration has also approved the partnership with City District Government Karachi in these projects.

A representative delegation comprising municipal experts from Istanbul Local Government and City District Government Karachi will soon visit both cities to finalize the working relationship in various projects of Karachi.

The decision in this regard was made during two day visit of City Nazim Syed Mustafa Kamal on the invitation of Mayor of Istanbul Mr. Kadir Topbas.

City Nazim Syed Mustafa Kamal during this visit also attended an international mayor’s conference “Union of Turkish World Municipalities” in Istanbul where representatives from 18 countries of the world participated. Nazim Karachi was given a very high protocol on this occasion and was very well received everywhere he went.
Speaking at the conference, the Mayor of Istanbul told the audience about the great relationship between Turkey and Pakistan. He also said that Turkey was the first country to be present on ground after the earthquake in Pakistan.

Nazim Karachi Syed Mustafa Kamal during this visit besides calling on Governor and Mayor of Istanbul also met with the mayors of seven other cities of Turkey and discussed with them various mega projects of Karachi such as Mass Transit System, BRT, Solid Waste Management System and Sewerage Treatment Plant. Governor and Mayor of Istanbul assured all possible help and cooperation in the early completion of mega projects in Karachi under partnership with CDGK.


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