Posted by: uss017 | December 13, 2007

PML-N’s culture of lies and deceit

On 04/03/08 I saw the ending part of P. J. Mir’s programme on ARY “It’s your Q & A with P. J. Mir.

There were three guests on P. J. Mir’s programme: a Pakistani businessman who had invested over £700 million in a London style Black Cab project and who, for a few years, was facing a number of problems from various politicians in the implementation of his business project. Then there were two members from the parties which won the most seats in the elections, a member of the PPP and one from PML-N.

Based on the little that I saw, P. J. Mir was discussing the topic of investment in Pakistan, how those forming the new government would raise investor confidence, the general policies of the new government and the measures they would take to cut the “red tape.”

Unfortunately, I was unable to note the names of these guests. However, for the purpose of this paper, names are irrelevant as I intend to deal with one dubious assertion made by a guest towards the end of the programme.

According to the PML-N member, “all” mega projects within Pakistan, such as the construction of motorways/highways, dams and developmental work in general etc., occurred under “democratic” governments. This naturally excluded the governments of Musharraf since the PML-N guest, faithfully adhering to his party’s position, did not regard them in any way to be democratic. Therefore, all these types of developmental projects were carried out under governments prior to the coming of President Musharraf.

The PML-N guest strongly insisted that the above was a “fact.” Not only that, but he ended with the following line (paraphrase):

pitchley door mey aup mujhey aik kaam batadey ju hua hu?” (translation: “just tell me one work[mega project] which occurred under the previous regime?“).

It requires little online research to discover that the above assertion – according to which the above referred projects occurred “only” under “democratic” governments – is a bald-faced lie. It is just that, a LIE.

Let’s consider the facts:

Motorways and Highways

Completed Motorways according to wikipedia:

    M1 – inaugurated in 2004 by President Musharraf. 30th October 2007 saw the inauguration of the remaining portion at the hands of President Musharraf and opened to the public in 31/10/07.

    M3 – inaugurated in 2002 by President Musharraf. Was opened to the public in early 2004.

    M9 – inaugurated in 2007 by President Musharraf.

    M10 – inaugurated by President Musharraf in 2007.

[Note: according to the above wikipedia articles, Nawaz Sharif had allegedly “conceived” these projects even though work began on them and they were completed under Musharraf. What is the evidence that Nawaz Sharif had “conceived” them? Let us, for arguments sake and with much reservation, accept this assertion. What does it mean to say that Nawaz Sharif had “conceived” these projects? It simply means that Nawaz Sharif had THOUGHT about their construction. Musharraf, on the other hand, planned, implemented and completed the projects. So while we may give credit to Nawaz Sharif for merely THINKING about these projects, Musharraf is the one who gets the credit for making them a reality.

To merely “conceive” a project is no big deal and essentially amounts to nothing. Right now as I type, I managed to “conceive” the idea of there being another nuclear power plant in Pakistan. Of course, when a future government does go ahead and constructs one, I get no credit for its construction. Similarly, a long time ago, I conceived the idea of there being very tall buildings in Pakistan. Currently, a number of tall buildings are being constructed in Pakistan (and many similar projects are in the pipeline). Does it seem reasonable for me to claim credit for their construction? As much as I am tempted to give an emphatic YES, I must, sadly, say NO.

Likewise, Nawaz Sharif, like so many other Pakistanis, thought about there being more motorways in Pakistan. But the one who actually DID IT was Musahrraf].

Besides the above, construction work is ongoing on other motorways; such as for instance the Sialkot Lahore Motorway (to be completed in 2010 ).

Highways:

    Under Musharraf various highways under construction throughout the country: N5, N-25, N-35, N-45, N-50, N-55, N-65, N-70, N-75, N-80, S-1, etc.

    President Pervez Musharraf inaugurated the Makran Coastal Highway (N-10) project in August 2001, consisting of Karachi-Gwadar, Pasni-Gwadar, and Ormara-Liari (Balochistan) Highways. The cost of the Liari-Ormara Highway was Rs3.9 billion and that of Pasni-Gwadar Highway, Rs2.8 billion respectively. The total length of Makran Coastal Highway is 533 kilometres.

Dams:

  • Mirani Dam: President Musharraf inaugurated the Mirani Dam in Baluchistan. Mirani Dam in Kech area of Mekran district, with a catchment area of 12,000 square kilometre, has been built in four years at a cost of Rs6 billion which includes Rs1.5 billion in compensation to the affected people. It will have a storage capacity of over 300,000 million acre feet of water.
  • Subakzai Dam: Musharraf inaugurated the Subakzai Dam in Zhob, Baluchistan, which took two years to complete. Around 15,000 people would get clean drinking water. 10, 000 acres of land would irrigate by the dam. The dam would have storage capacity of 32, 700 acre-feet. The project is worth 1.5 billion rupees (see also this).
  • Gomal Zam Dam: This project started in Aug 2002 and is expected to be completed in early 2008. It is located in the Damaan in NWFP. It is 437 feet high and will irrigate about 163,000 acres of land. The total costs amounts to Rs. 12 billion, with a gross storage of 1.14 MAF. It will produce 17.4 MW of electricity.

Besides the motorways, highways and dams:

  • In Musharraf’s era: The 1450 MW Ghazi Brotha Hydel Project (GBHP) went into operation in June 2003.
  • Nuclear power plant Chashma-2, came on-line in 2007, has added another 300MW to the national grid.

In 1999 our installed capacity was merely 15,860 MW. (With Hydel 4826 + Thermal 10,897 + Nuclear 137). But in 2005-06 our installed capacity increased to become 20,495 MW. (With Hydel 6499 + Thermal 13,534 + Nuclear 462).

And how about the Sialkot International Airport Limited (SIAL)? The 1,002-acre airport is 13 km west of Sialkot and is linked by a road to Gujranwala, Wazirabad, Gujrat, Narowal, the Export Processing Zone (EPZ) and the Sialkot Dry Port Trust.

For details on many more mega projects and major developmental work under Musharraf, see:

Unless one happens to be a genuine idiot and a retard, you need only possess fairly mediocre intelligence to note that the above projects occurred UNDER MUSHARRAF. Furthermore, as noted, many projects are also ongoing…Musharraf gets the credit for initiating work on them.

The only one who gets a credit for the above (and the ongoing projects) is President Musharraf and the members of his team.

Nawaz Sharif and the late Benazir Bhutto’s so-called “democratic” regimes get no credit for this. They get zilch, zippo, zero, nada, thenga

Nawaz Sharif and Benazir Bhutto’s combined work is nothing minutely comparable to the large-scale developmental work we have witnessed throughout Pakistan under President Musharraf.

How can people lie in such an open fashion and get away with it? I think the answer is as follows: Pakistanis in general tend to have an exceptionally weak and short-term memory (for an example of their weak memory, see this). Thus, if someone utters a blatant lie, it is very unlikely to get exposed for what it is. Worse, the media is overwhelmingly against Musharraf and alarmingly biased. Therefore, lies against Musharraf can easily go by unchallenged. There is little or no interest within most of the media in setting the record straight when it comes to Musharraf.

An intense media propaganda campaign has been going on for a few years against President Musharraf on almost all Pakistani news channels, news papers and the internet. The campaign is so vigorous that the many unchallengeable achievements (see this, this, this, and this) of the Musharraf government remain largely unknown to the masses.

As if the above was not enough, members of the PML-N, particularly Nawaz Sharif, are desperately trying to take credit for almost every good work and project which took place under Musharraf since they (the PML-N) have really nothing much to boast about with regard to their own previous performances. Nawaz Sharif is taking full advantage of the lack of professionalism and the low state of the Pakistani media since he appears to be aware that the lies he (and his cronies) spews are unlikely to get challenged, at least for the time being.

Nawaz Sharif and Co. can only talk ad nauseam about that one lonely Islamabad-Lahore motorway (M2) which was constructed when he was Prime Minister. There is nothing more they can boast about. Thus, it makes sense for them to deceptively take credit for many of the good works achieved under Musharraf. Hence, a while ago we also heard Nawaz Sharif personally taking credit for the motorways and the highways in Pakisan, not bothering to inform the masses that ALL – with ONE exception – were constructed under Musharraf![1] Nawaz Sharif and his party officials can bravely utter such open lies because they are aware concerning the pathetic ignorance of the masses and, secondly, the fact that the media generally dislikes Musharraf and is, therefore, quite unlikely to challenge his questionable claims against Musharraf.

Were the media, as a whole, just slightly balanced in its presentation of the issues and possessed the ability to critically (and soberly) question individuals, then Nawaz Sharif and his cronies would likely have faced a very difficult time uttering such white lies. Unfortunately, the media, which Pervaiz Musharraf pretty much freed single-handedly, turned against him in a short span of time, and that too in a rather vicious, nasty and propaganda/drama styled manner.

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1. Just to clarify, I did not mean to suggest that each and every highway in existence within Pakistan was constructed under Musharraf. For example, the idea of building Motorways & highways was first propogated in the era of President Ayub khan (1958 to 1969). That is precisely when the Karakoram Highway started (1966 – 1986) and several famous highways were completed in that era.

See also:

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© Musharraf Supporters 2008 All rights reserved

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Responses

  1. […] Another Musharraf supporter on DM Digital Among other things, she makes one interesting observation: many people seem to be mesmerised by the construction of a lone motorway during the time of Nawaz Sharif and are more than happy to brag about this “achievement” of his ad nausem. But they seem totally oblivion to the multiple motorways which have either been constructed during the time of President Musharraf or are in the process of completion (see item number 32, 33, and 34 here See also this). […]

  2. its an excellent effort on your part … keep up the great work of exposing these liers!!!
    ‘SUB SAY PHELAY PAKISTAN’
    LONG LIVE president musharraf

  3. […] PML-N’s culture of lies and deceit (a PML-N activist propagates Nawaz Sharif’s tradition of telling lies). […]

  4. LONG LIVE PERVEZ MUSHARRAF

    WE ARE WITH YOU IN ALL INSTANCES AND STAY FIRM AS YOU WERE ALWAYS!!!

    MILLIONS AND MILLIONS OF PAKISTANIS STILL SUPPORTS YOU

  5. I add two very important projects of the Musharaf’s government which almost never mentioned by Musharaf’s media persons ever. They are the Kohat tunnel and Loahari Pass tunnel. They are more costly and valuable to the common people than any other projects. And also the widening and upgrading of KKH.

  6. […] PML-N’s culture of lies and deceit […]

  7. TRUTH ABOUT HOW NAWAZ SHARIF TREATED THE MEDIA WHILST IN POWER

    One of the highest profile harrassment was the victimisation and harassment of journalists who had cooperated in the production of the British Broadcasting Corporation’s (BBC) documentary “Correspondent” dealing with corruption in the government and business concerns of then Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif and allegations of money-laundering by his family.

    The intimidation of journalists became public when intelligence agents in Lahore picked up Mehmood Ali Khan Lodhi, of The News, Lahore, on May 2. Lodhi was released after two days of interrogation on May 4, after journalists boycotted the coverage of the Punjab provincial assembly to protest Lodhi’s abduction and demanded information about his whereabouts. There was no official explanation for his illegal detention.

    According to Lodhi, the interrogators wanted to know details of his involvement with a BBC team. Lodhi said the BBC had contacted him and he gave them the address, telephone numbers and directions to the house of Yousuf Aziz, Sharif’s estranged cousin. Lodhi said that the interrogators were anxious to find the motives behind the documentary. He added that during the making of the documentary, he had received death threats for working with BBC.

    On May 4, just after midnight, Hussain Haqqani, spokesperson of the opposition alliance and columnist for The Friday Times and the daily Jang was taken into the custody of Pakistan’s Federal Investigation Agency (FIA) on corruption and embezzlement charges. However, the real reason for his detention was to punish him for the interview he gave to programme “Correspondent”.

    The same day, Ejaz Haider, a news editor of The Friday Times, received an anonymous note warning him to install bulletproof windows in his car. Haider was not home at the time the note was delivered to Haider’s 7-year-old son. Haider believed he was targeted because he worked for The Friday Times, whose owner, Najam Sethi had played a significant role in facilitating the production of “Correspondent”.

    Sethi had to bear the full force of the government’s anger for his role in organising the visit and for being interviewed for the programme. According to press reports, senior government officials had cautioned him not to work with the BBC team, terming it an attempt to destabilise the country and overthrow the government. Sethi said he had received numerous threatening phone calls; he feared that his house and office would be attacked and he would be arrested.

    His fears proved to be well founded; on May 8, about fifteen armed men arrived in vehicles bearing government registration plates stormed Sethi’s house at around 3:00 am and started beating Sethi’s two personal guards posted at the gate. They then entered the house and banged at the bedroom door. As soon as Sethi opened the door they started beating him. His wife, Jugnu Mohsin, was also beaten and locked in a room and warned not to raise the alarm. The officials became abusive when she asked to see the arrest warrants.

    The official reason given for his arrest was a speech he had delivered at the India-Pakistan Friendship Society on April 30 in New Delhi on problems facing Pakistan. The official charge did not have much credibility as Sethi had delivered the same speech earlier to the armed forces personnel at the National Defence College. A government spokesman also alleged that Sethi had been arrested for his anti-state activities and links with Indian intelligence agents.

    Sethi was detained for several days at an undisclosed location. The police even refused to acknowledge that he had been arrested, although information was leaked to the press that he was in the custody of military’s Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) agency.

    On May 12, the Lahore High Court rejected a petition by Jugnu Mohsin to produce Sethi before the court because he was being held by military intelligence. On May 13, authorities seized copies of The Friday Times.
    On May 17, the Supreme Court ordered that Sethi’s family be allowed to meet with him. The Supreme Court ruled that hearings to determine whether the ISI could arrest Sethi under the Army Act would start on May 31.

    On June 1, the ISI transferred Sethi to police custody, after an official criminal complaint or First Information Report (FIR) was filed against him under sections 123-A (“Condemnation of the Creation of the State and Advocacy of Abolition of its Sovereignty”), 124-A (sedition), and 153-A (“Promoting Enmity Between Different Groups”) of Pakistan’s penal code, and Section 13 of the Prevention of Anti-National Activities Act of 1974.

    However, on June 2, during the hearing of Sethi’s bail application filed by Mohsin, the attorney general of Pakistan made the surprise announcement that the government had decided to drop all charges against Sethi. The attorney general, however, added the government reserved the right to start new proceeding against Sethi. He was released the same day.

    Even after his release, the government continued to harass Sethi. On June 10, Sethi accused the government of using the income tax department to intimidate him and his wife. He said the government had issued over two dozen notices against him, his wife, The Friday Times and Vanguard Books, his publishing company. His wife’s bank account was frozen and money was transferred to the tax department. The income tax department reopened settled income tax assessments and had laid claim to, or “attached”, his family’s house.

    On June 23, officials of Federal Immigration Authority (FIA) at the Lahore International Airport prevented Sethi from going to London to receive Amnesty International’s Special Award for Human Rights Journalism Under Threat. Sethi was informed that his name had been placed on the Exit Control List on June 2, which barred him from travelling abroad.

    The next day, a petition was filed by Syed Zafar Ali Shah, a member of Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif’s political party to disqualify Sethi from voting or running for any elected office. However, on October 6, the Chief Election Commissioner of Pakistan dismissed a petition. The Chief Election Commissioner did not elaborate on his decision.

  8. TRUTH ABOUT HOW NAWAZ SHARIF TREATED THE MEDIA WHILST IN POWER
    EVENTS OF 1999

    THE JOURNALISTS OF TODAY HOPCRITES LIKE HAMID MIR NEED TO WAKE UP AND EXPOSE THE ATTITUDE OF THE DEMOCRATIC GOVERNMENTS IN THE PAST RATHER THAN STAYING QUITE

    Nawaz Sharif tried to subdue the Jang Group, the country’s largest media group, and to punish Najam Sethi, editor of The Friday Times, and other journalists, who had cooperated in the production of a BBC documentary investigating corruption involving the family and business concerns of the then prime minister.

    Victimisation of The Jang Group

    AWAZ SHARIFS action against the Jang Group started in December 1998. On December 14, the Federal Investigation Agency (FIA) raided the Rawalpindi office of the daily Jang. They demanded to check the newsprint quotas and store records and harassed journalists and other staff present at the office. However, the newspapers’ staff and office bearers of the workers union resisted this attempt and forced the FIA officials to withdraw from the premises.

    The government claimed the raid was a routine examination of the accounts and audit of the group was being conducted because of discrepancies in the profit declared to the income tax department and to the Audit Bureau of Circulation (ABC).

    The Jang group spokesman contested the government’s view and maintained that the tax raids were conducted to harass and intimidate the group and its journalists to stop writing stories, reports and investigative stories critical of the government. The spokesman added that government demands included the dismissal of 16 senior journalists including Maleeha Lodhi (Editor, The News, Rawalpindi), Irshad A Haqqani (Editor, Jang, Lahore) and Kamran Khan (The News, Karachi).

    The spokesman for the newspaper group also disclosed that senior government officials had asked Jang group newspapers not to carry a news story concerning the non-payment of a US$ 18.5 million loan by the family of Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif that had been published by the British newspaper The Observer a day earlier. The spokesman claimed officials tried to block the publication of the story and threatened that things would get “real tough” if the story was published. The story was reprinted in a number of Pakistani newspapers, including those belonging to the Jang group.

    In retaliation, the government stopped advertising in Jang Group newspapers and filed claims against the group for customs duties on shipments of newsprint amounting to 1.6 billion rupees (US$ 31.4 million). The government also issued notices of tax evasion against the group and its owner, Mir Shakilur Rehman, amounting to two billion rupees (US$ 40 million).

    On January 28, Mir Shakilur Rehman held a press conference during which he played discussions with Senator Saifur Rehman, head of the government’s Accountability Bureau and a close associate of the then Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif, in which Senator Rehman asked for the dismissal of a number of senior journalists. The Senator also demanded a say in hiring journalists in key position. The senator was heard promising Mir Shakilur Rehman, “If we see any positive change in your attitude, we will settle your problems in a positive manner.” Mir Shakilur Rehman rejected the threats as well as the inducements offered by the senator.

    On January 30, the police registered cases of sedition against daily Jang and two other Urdu dailies Amn and Parcham for publishing a political advertisement that “created hatred in the public by virtue of seditious contents.”

    In an attempt to force the closure of the publications, the government froze the bank accounts of the Jang Group and confiscated newspapers’ newsprint, and stopped newsprint shipments at the port of Karachi.

    On February 1, the Supreme Court ordered the government to release the newsprint. However, the FIA in Rawalpindi defied the court order and commandeered trucks of newsprint meant for Jang publications.

    A group of journalists who went to the office of the FIA to discuss the release of newsprint were abused, pushed and beaten, resulting in injury to three journalists: Mariana Baabar, Shakil Sheikh and Rana Mubashir. The same day a number of journalists were beaten by the police at the rally organised by the Pakistan Federal Union of Journalists (PFUJ), to protest the victimisation of the Jang Group.

    Journalists from the Jang and The News responded to police violence and the seizure of newsprint, by blocking the city’s main Muree Road for nearly five hours, while heavy contingents of police patrolled the area. The next day police registered cases against eighty journalists for staging the demonstration.

    On February 3, Federal Investigation Agency (FIA) officials and the police manhandled staff of the daily Ausaf, Islamabad. The editor of Ausaf, Hamid Mir, said that they were punished for providing newsprint to the Jang Group. Senator Saifur Rehman reportedly threatened Hamid Mir with closure of his newspaper for providing support to the Jang Group. Telephones of Ausaf’s Karachi bureau were disconnected making it difficult for the bureau to send news to its Islamabad office.

    On February 4, the Supreme Court again ordered the government to release 200 of the 1,093 reels of impounded newsprint because if newsprint was not released it would not be possible to publish the Jang Group newspapers. After the Supreme Court ruling, the Federal Investigation Agency (FIA) and the police cordoned off the daily Jang’s printing press in Karachi and tried to stop the printing of the newspapers. They took away the truck loaded with eight reels of newsprint belonging to the Jang Group, which was later after the intervention of Senior District Magistrate (SDM).

    FIA officials said that they had received orders not to allow the newsprint to the press. The vehicle leaving the press with copies of the group’s evening newspaper, Awam, was stopped by police and only allowed to leave when the editor of Awam threatened action against the policemen.

    Police parked a trailer in front of the main door of the printing press and checked all cars coming towards the press and harassed the staff of the printing press. The editorial and technical staff had to rush to the press several times to argue with the police and FIA men to stop the harassment.

    One positive aspect of this unfortunate act of government arrogance was the universal condemnation of government action by journalists, editors, publishers as well as national and international media organisations The government realised the operation to tame the Jang Group had backfired, and after nearly two months of hostility a settlement was reached on February 7 at a meeting between Mir Shakilur Rehman and representatives of the government.

    The agreement led to the release of the newsprint, the withdrawal of Federal Investigation Agency (FIA) and police personnel from outside the group’s offices, and the unfreezing of bank accounts. The agreement led to the payment of salaries of the workers and the resumption of normal publication of Jang publications.
    BBC documentary

    The other high profile episode was the victimisation and harassment of journalists who had cooperated in the production of the British Broadcasting Corporation’s (BBC) documentary “Correspondent” dealing with corruption in the government and business concerns of then Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif and allegations of money-laundering by his family.

    The intimidation of journalists became public when intelligence agents in Lahore picked up Mehmood Ali Khan Lodhi, of The News, Lahore, on May 2. Lodhi was released after two days of interrogation on May 4, after journalists boycotted the coverage of the Punjab provincial assembly to protest Lodhi’s abduction and demanded information about his whereabouts. There was no official explanation for his illegal detention.

    According to Lodhi, the interrogators wanted to know details of his involvement with a BBC team. Lodhi said the BBC had contacted him and he gave them the address, telephone numbers and directions to the house of Yousuf Aziz, Sharif’s estranged cousin. Lodhi said that the interrogators were anxious to find the motives behind the documentary. He added that during the making of the documentary, he had received death threats for working with BBC.

    On May 4, just after midnight, Hussain Haqqani, spokesperson of the opposition alliance and columnist for The Friday Times and the daily Jang was taken into the custody of Pakistan’s Federal Investigation Agency (FIA) on corruption and embezzlement charges. However, the real reason for his detention was to punish him for the interview he gave to programme “Correspondent”.

    The same day, Ejaz Haider, a news editor of The Friday Times, received an anonymous note warning him to install bulletproof windows in his car. Haider was not home at the time the note was delivered to Haider’s 7-year-old son. Haider believed he was targeted because he worked for The Friday Times, whose owner, Najam Sethi had played a significant role in facilitating the production of “Correspondent”.

    Sethi had to bear the full force of the government’s anger for his role in organising the visit and for being interviewed for the programme. According to press reports, senior government officials had cautioned him not to work with the BBC team, terming it an attempt to destabilise the country and overthrow the government. Sethi said he had received numerous threatening phone calls; he feared that his house and office would be attacked and he would be arrested.

    His fears proved to be well founded; on May 8, about fifteen armed men arrived in vehicles bearing government registration plates stormed Sethi’s house at around 3:00 am and started beating Sethi’s two personal guards posted at the gate. They then entered the house and banged at the bedroom door. As soon as Sethi opened the door they started beating him. His wife, Jugnu Mohsin, was also beaten and locked in a room and warned not to raise the alarm. The officials became abusive when she asked to see the arrest warrants.

    The official reason given for his arrest was a speech he had delivered at the India-Pakistan Friendship Society on April 30 in New Delhi on problems facing Pakistan. The official charge did not have much credibility as Sethi had delivered the same speech earlier to the armed forces personnel at the National Defence College. A government spokesman also alleged that Sethi had been arrested for his anti-state activities and links with Indian intelligence agents.

    Sethi was detained for several days at an undisclosed location. The police even refused to acknowledge that he had been arrested, although information was leaked to the press that he was in the custody of military’s Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) agency.

    On May 12, the Lahore High Court rejected a petition by Jugnu Mohsin to produce Sethi before the court because he was being held by military intelligence. On May 13, authorities seized copies of The Friday Times.
    On May 17, the Supreme Court ordered that Sethi’s family be allowed to meet with him. The Supreme Court ruled that hearings to determine whether the ISI could arrest Sethi under the Army Act would start on May 31.

    On June 1, the ISI transferred Sethi to police custody, after an official criminal complaint or First Information Report (FIR) was filed against him under sections 123-A (“Condemnation of the Creation of the State and Advocacy of Abolition of its Sovereignty”), 124-A (sedition), and 153-A (“Promoting Enmity Between Different Groups”) of Pakistan’s penal code, and Section 13 of the Prevention of Anti-National Activities Act of 1974.

    However, on June 2, during the hearing of Sethi’s bail application filed by Mohsin, the attorney general of Pakistan made the surprise announcement that the government had decided to drop all charges against Sethi. The attorney general, however, added the government reserved the right to start new proceeding against Sethi. He was released the same day.

    Even after his release, the government continued to harass Sethi. On June 10, Sethi accused the government of using the income tax department to intimidate him and his wife. He said the government had issued over two dozen notices against him, his wife, The Friday Times and Vanguard Books, his publishing company. His wife’s bank account was frozen and money was transferred to the tax department. The income tax department reopened settled income tax assessments and had laid claim to, or “attached”, his family’s house.

    On June 23, officials of Federal Immigration Authority (FIA) at the Lahore International Airport prevented Sethi from going to London to receive Amnesty International’s Special Award for Human Rights Journalism Under Threat. Sethi was informed that his name had been placed on the Exit Control List on June 2, which barred him from travelling abroad.

    The next day, a petition was filed by Syed Zafar Ali Shah, a member of Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif’s political party to disqualify Sethi from voting or running for any elected office. However, on October 6, the Chief Election Commissioner of Pakistan dismissed a petition. The Chief Election Commissioner did not elaborate on his decision.
    Arrests and attacks on journalists
    While government action against the Jang Group and Najam Sethi received the publicity they deserved, there were a number of other cases of threats, arrests and attacks on journalists throughout the year.
    On January 7, Syed Rasool Rasa, correspondent of the Urdu daily Khabrain in Malakand district of the North West Frontier Province, was arrested for reporting the arrest of a member of the provincial assembly. He was kept in detention for six days during which he was mistreated and beaten to force him to issue a denial.
    On January 12, Waliullah Saleem, director of the Peshawar based Sahaar News Agency, was threatened that he would be killed if he continued to speak out against the Taliban. He was harassed, followed and chased by unidentified people forcing him to leave Peshawar and hide in Islamabad.
    On January 30, three unidentified men armed with a pistol and Kalashnikov rifle ransacked the offices of the daily Khyber Mail International, in Peshawar, the capital of the North West Frontier Province. The attackers severely beat the messenger Mohammad Javed and tied him up. They smashed the furniture, fax machine and computer monitors, and took away telephones.
    On February 4, Sindh police threatened Mazhar Abbas, chief reporter of The Star and former president and general secretary of the Karachi Union of Journalists (KUJ) for articles written by him that were critical of the police. The threat was contained in a letter to the newspaper by the police. The letter said “in case the scribe is not checked, very stringent action will be taken against him under the law” and added that if the police could take care of terrorists in Karachi, they could deal with “fortune seekers” like the journalist Abbas.
    On March 24, police assaulted Meruddin, of the Sindhi newspaper Kawish, and Sarwar Jamali, of the Sindhi daily Koshish, and ransacked their houses in Hyderabad. The journalists alleged that this action was taken at the orders of the then provincial minister Ismail Rahoo and his brother Aslam Rahoo. The two journalists alleged that they were beaten up and their family members maltreated in order to stop publication of stories against the brothers.
    On April 2, the Anti-Narcotics Force (ANF) arrested the owner and chief executive of The Frontier Post, Rehmat Shah Afridi, on the charge of possession of drugs. According to the ANF, Afridi was arrested after a tip that he would try to smuggle hashish out of the country. The ANF alleged he was arrested at 3:45 am while driving along with his two guards in his car containing 20 kilograms of hashish, two licensed Kalashinkovs and a pistol. The ANF also alleged that during the preliminary investigation, Afridi revealed the whereabouts of 620 kilograms of hashish hidden in a truck parked in Faisalabad in Punjab province, which also led to the arrest of the truck’s driver and a passenger. However, Afridi’s family has alleged that this is an attempt to gag the press. Memoodullah Afridi alleged that his father had been receiving threats and was expecting something like this to happen.
    Mir Shakilur Rehman, president of the All Pakistan Newspapers Society (APNS), expressed concern over the arrest. He said that the arrest of a newspaper owner on such a serious charge was a matter of grave concern for the entire newspaper fraternity. APNS appealed to the government to constitute an independent inquiry commission to investigate the charges levelled against Afridi and to provide him with access to legal assistance and medical facilities as he was suffering from a heart ailment.
    On May 5, unidentified intruders burnt the car of Imtiaz Alam of The News at his house in Lahore. Alam had been receiving threats from unknown persons. The intruders moved the car from Alam’s garage onto the road where they set it on fire while he was asleep. One of his neighbours saw his car in flames and informed the police. By the time police reached the location, the car was completely burnt.

    In May, during the government’s confrontation with Najam Sethi, copies of the London-based weekly The Economist were seized because it had an article criticising the government’s assaults on the press.
    On May 13, armed assailants shot and injured Rana Sajid Iqbal, the editor of the daily Nawai Sharrer, in Sargodha in Punjab province. He was shot and injured by two bullets and received seven dagger wounds in an attack as he was returning home. Iqbal’s brother alleged that the editor was attacked at the orders of Chaudary Abdul Hameed, a member of the National Assembly (MNA), and the MNA’s son, Hamid Hameed, the mayor of the city. The editor’s brother said that, a few days ago, the MNA had threatened the editor of dire consequences for publishing a news story against him and the mayor.

    On May 19 in Lahore, police assaulted a photographer and a reporter covering a funeral procession of four alleged robbers who were killed in a police encounter. Naseer Chaudary, a photographer of the daily evening newspaper Naya Akhbar was taking photographs of the procession from the tractor-trolley when the police asked him to stop taking photographs and to clear the scene. When Chaudhry refused, the police beat him and pushed him from the trolley, fracturing his leg. When Zahid Ali Khan, a reporter of the daily Khabrain tried to help his colleague, the police also beat him.

  9. I’M NO SUPPORTER OF PPP AND PML-N INFACT I’M PRO MUSHARRAF.BUT I WOULD RATHER SEE PPP IN GOVERNMENT THAN THE HO HOPERS PLM-N.ZARDARI MR 10% DOES DESERVE SOME CREDIT FOR OUSTING PML-N…………

    WELL DONE ZARDARI FOR DUMPING PML-N OUT OF THE GOVERNMENT

    Take the label off ZARADRI for being MR 10% and than see his achievement of reaching the presidency and it is staggering.Even if you do label him with MR 10% he still has taken his fair share of punishment by staying in prison for 11 years.

    No other corrupt politician has been in prison for the length which their crime of corruption deserves.NAWAZ SHARIF a incompetent leader who has been involved in large scale corruption from getting millions of rupees of loans written off for his industries to KARZ UTHARO MULK SANWARO scheme served only a year or so before showing his coward and non existence leadership qualities by jetting off to Saudi Arabia with his whole family after the humiliating deal he agreed to.

    I am no supporter of the PPP and specially Zardari but compare him with NAWAZ SHARIF and you have to admit Zardari has shown much more maturity and smartness than the brainless Nawaz.Zardari has proven to Nawaz on how to act like a politician and not like a immature politician bent on taking revenge from opponents on personal ego whilst damaging national interests on the way.

    It was ZARDARI who served 11 years in prison while NAWAZ cut a shameful deal and jetted off to Saudi Arabia

    It was ZARADRI who wanted to go ahead with the elections after his wife got murdered while NAWAZ was in favour of boycott

    It was ZARDARIS party which won the most seats in the 18th February elections on more issues, while NAWAZ and CO only had one single issue of judiciary to talk about. How can a party be so clueless about real issues and only do politics with one issue?

    It was ZARADRI who made it clear that Judiciary needs to be independent and not personalities like IFTIKHAR CHOUDHRY.As the PML-N claimed that no PCO Judges are accepted whilst IFTIKHAR CHOUDHRY himself took oath under PCO so how can we call him the most honest man. So ZARADRIS decision not to restore IFTIKHAR CHOUDHRY was a good one, a decision even MUSHARRAF can be happy with.

    It can only be a party like PML-N which has a lack of leadership quality. Leadership which is based on self-interest and family interest or PUNJAB interest which thinks that people who voted for them did so on the basis of restoring the already corrupt and already PCO Oath holders like IFTIKHAR CHOUDHRY.

    How can PML-N just exist on one issue, the people who voted for PML-N wanted more, they wanted their problems solved, their day to day life to improve. I’m 100% sure everyone who voted for PML-N was not even interested in IFTIKHAR CHOUDHRY.

    But that’s what we can expect from a lacklusture, visionless, objectiveless and pointless existence of NAWAZ SHARIF and PML-N.A party does not deserve to exist if it only has ONE ISSUE to do politics on, even that ONE ISSUE of JUDICIARY is where they have jumped on the bandwagon.

    PML-N betrayed their voters by quitting the government. They should have stayed in government and showed some sincerity with its voters by working on their issues.By quitting it showed their lack of interest in ordinary Pakistanis and their issues.

    Whereas ZARDARI was the one who slowly and cleverly built together his coalition and was working on future plans.

    It was ZARADRI who was able to disunite the Lawyers movement. A movement which did quite a lot in disrupting Pakistan’s progress in the last year.Zardari was able to break the momentum of the movement and also has been successful in buying out some deposed judges and restoring them back into office. In the process of breaking the lawyers movement ZARDARI was successful in shutting up the PML-N who had only one issue to cry on. Now NAWAZ SHARIF has no where to run or nothing to cry about and as expected NAWAZ will go to LONDON and try to hide his humiliation of failing to achieve anything.

    It was ZARDARI who contributed the most in MUSHARRAFS RESIGNATION.Nawaz Sharif was moaning about the President for a long time but until ZARADRI agreed everyone was hopeless to do anything. But finally it was ZARADRI who changed his mind and decided to go after the president only than MUSHARRAF decide to call it a day.

    Finally it was ZARDARI who wanted to become president and despite all efforts of the PML-N not wanting so,ZARDARI thrashed PML-N’s candidate and became the president of Pakistan whereas NAWAZ the clueless was relying on public opinion polls and thought that his presidential candidate will surprise everyone but once again the wishful thinking of the incompetent NAWAZ SHARIF brought humiliation for him.

    So it is ZARADARI AND PPP who have managed to secure the presidency and strengthen their hold in government and it’s the wild and amateurish decisions of NAWAZ SHARIF which has meant that from gaining 90 seats in the National Assembly and securing 9 Ministers their ONE ISSUE POLITICS OF LAWYERS is going no where and they have all resigned from their ministries, their presidential candidate received a battering from ZARADRI and they are sitting on the OPPOSITION BENCHES and NAWAZ is back in LONDON.

    WHAT A HUMILIATION THRASHED ON NAWAZ AND PML-N FROM ZARADRI AND PPP.

    SAJJAD AHMED – UK

  10. Hi Sajjad

    This land slide victory was expected due to cold murder of Benazir.
    No doubt
    Zardari has shown patiance and tact in handling the situation.
    To me it seems PPP will have a stamp of Zardari on it .
    There is a change in the leadership in PPP and that change is welcomed,home and abroad.

    DIALOGUE and DISCUSSION are the only way to help political process to establish and develop
    understanding between masses.

    Regarding Shrief brothers I would say let us see how Shahbaz Shrief will emerge because he is the
    driving force in that party.

    Democracy Begins with listening to the others point of view ,so even if you are PPP worker do keep us posted.

    We want to hear from all Pakistanis well at least I do as long as the language is appropriate.

  11. NOW THAT PPP HAS ACQUIRED OFFICE FOR THE FOURTH TIME in the short period of last 40 years of Pakistan,
    CAN we have some deliverance please if not to people like me who do not affiliate themselves with anyone, at least PPP workers deserve it.

  12. N League is only Nude League , General musharraf had to hang Nawass shareef to get rid oif politics of hypocricy in pakistan this was the biggest mistake of General sb that he doesnt add suffix of shaheed with NAwaz shareef name
    Long Live Musharraf
    Love Pakistan Love PervaizMusharraf
    Love Pak Army
    Love ISI

  13. Faraz@
    N League is only Nude League
    extremely creative.lol

  14. thanx my dear sister

  15. Well we are looking daily whever Nawaz Shariff delivering his statement to press always he cannot live without Ex President Name, because he got the virus i.e Mushraffphobia.

    Openly he is saying that whatever he did that time was right, whatever Ex President did wrong, whatever he did on Superme Court was right , foreign accounts ceased was right, Yellow Cab was right, many others , he was totally right , and other is wrong, NAWZU BILLA he become god.

    He is only one agenda i.e. he is feeling to hang Ex President somehow but this is his only dreams and he is playing , he dont have any issue to do do in politics , politically he is dead , he got the seats on the issue of ROTI 2 RUPEES and GAS AND ELECTRIC FREE, DR. QADEER KHAN ISSUE
    Remember that he got all seats from Punjab his electrol role was on 3rd so politically he is dead.

    PHYSICALLY FAT AND MENTALLY SICK

    UNEDUCATED

    ONLY NEED PIYA AND NAHRI

    BIG MOUTH

    FOR US HE DONT HAVE ANY PLACE TO ADJUST.

    ONE OF THE BIGGEST MUNAFAQ

    NO DEAL BUT DEAL WAS 5 YEARS THEN 10 YEARS.

    HE DON HAVE THE PLACE TO EXILE HIS PLACE SHOULD BE ADILA JAIL OR MIANWALI JAIL.

    NASEER

  16. correct

  17. Zardari and Nawaz Sharif

    Both have the understanding how they can cheat the nation of Pakistan,

    KEEP IN MIND EVERYONE THAT ONE EXECUTIVE ORDER CANNOT BRING DEPOSED JUDGES AGAIN

    Many top Lawyers already said this cannot be undo and cannot be reverse so they have to accept but both is playing ADLIA AND ADLIA
    now 17th Amendment without 17th amendment Zardari become zero, now he already got the aiwan e sadar where he is enjoying day and night Mr. President.

    Mr. Sahrif is sitting his palace in Rai wind only through his old balls to mushraff , Ex President dont want to caught up , he already said i am in army house and i am the person who follow roles and regulations so Mr. Sharif you have to wait, you have again transp hairs wait how Ex President make you again without hair .

    Zardari day by day going down , he try to arrest Mumtaz Ali Bhutto within one hour Zardari have seen Larkana and other cities was jamed all shops closed down and people start agitations on street.

    On this cricis Zardari have seen should understand that on their success only bhutto blood so there is no bhutto at the moment in the Party.

    I am sure people will understand that next election is very important , landslide victory for Fatima Bhutto from Sindh province and if EX PRESIDENT actively fall in politics then Q LEAGUEshould be from all over the pakistan.

    Zardari will go back dubai and should lookafter to her wealth and days – Nawaz Sahrif cannot go anywhere he should be house arrest in rai wind with his brother.

    Well we have to face the reality and accept.

    A news one of the corrupted advisor of PM for interior ministry Mr. Rehman Malik went to Saudi Arabia , oh god corruptions in saudi arabia is strictly not allowed the punishment is beheaded , i think he has gone for some dosh.

    Lets see every hour every second what happening in our country.

    Naseer

  18. we dont need fraud democratic leaders like nawaz n zardari n thier false n fake democracy,,,n nawaz sharif should better shut his mouth bcoz he is himself a creation of a dictator gen Zia…so y to make big claims Mr sharif wen u urself got full help to come in politics,, i think its better to have military rulers than to have these cheaters n culprits who cheat ppl by usin name ov democracy
    long liv Musharaf u r far better than these liars n cheaters,,,,


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