May 2009

Pakistani Gold finds new way into foreign markets

By Faryal Najeeb

KARACHI: Gold dealers have found a perfectly tax-free legal way to ship the precious metal into another country with an intention to sell them for a profit. Have women wear them as jewellery and travel to the desired destination.

Gold rates in Pakistan are considerably stable now than few months ago. However, it continues to remain cheaper by Rs300-500 per 10 grams compared to the Dubai bullion market.Read More »Pakistani Gold finds new way into foreign markets

Swat – a report from the frontline

Farhat Taj

Recently an AIRRA (Aryana Institute for Regional Research and Advocacy – an Islamabad-based research organisation) investigation team went to some parts of Swat that had been under army attacks. The team observed whether the attacks were targeted at the Taliban and their installations. It observed two villages — Ladikas and Watkai in Mingora — and Khwazakhela, a tehsil in Swat. The team with its access to the people of the area could manage to take Besham route from Islamabad to reach Mingora via Khwazakhela. Though continuous curfew and alternate threats from the military posts and the Taliban posts badly hampered the journey of the team but somehow some of the members could manage to reach Mingora via Khwazakhela and Charbagh with the exodus of the people from different parts of Swat valley. The team was able to access and interview several dozens of those families who were still stuck up in the valley.

The team observed that the security forces have successfully destroyed the installations of the Taliban and have disrupted their chain of command in that area. They have killed many Taliban there with very little collateral damage, albeit with the destruction of civilian infrastructure. The best example is the Taliban headquarter in Khwazakhela. The headquarters was located on a mountain. It housed the Taliban operational command led by commander Yamin, the intelligence department led by commander Rashid and the department of logistics and supplies. The aerial bombardment of the Pakistan army reduced all that to rubble. The entire side of the mountain housing the headquarters has been exploded and razed.Read More »Swat – a report from the frontline

The flood behind the storm



A room cannot be called a bed-room without a bed. River without water, a flower without fragrance and a brain without ideology; all are same as a body without soul. For a Muslim, Jihad is like the blood running in the veins .The western world is defaming this most important element of the Islamic teachings by intermingling it with violence and aggression. Jihad is in fact a very delicate and subtle type of lesson in the book of Islam. Jihad means an action against those who intend to challenge the authority of Almighty God by depriving the weaker ones of their basic human rights. It has so many types and forms. It does not mean holding a naked sword and start beheading the rivals indiscriminately. Those who interpret Jihad in this way are not aware even of the basic teachings of Islam and those who promote such blood dripping picture of Islam can never be called the Muslims.Read More »The flood behind the storm

Please do not turn on A/C immediately as soon as you enter the car

An email message from a friend;

Open the windows after you enter your car and turn ON the air-conditioning after a couple of minutes.

According to a research done, the car dashboard, sofa, air freshener emits Benzene, a Cancer causing toxin (carcinogen – take note of the heated plastic Smell in your car).In addition to causing cancer, it poisons your bones, causes anemia, and reduces white blood cells.Read More »Please do not turn on A/C immediately as soon as you enter the car

The battle for Pakistan —Najmuddin A Shaikh

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The armed forces are now committed, one hopes, to the elimination of the military threat. It is civil society that has to erode and then eliminate the ideological threat that has been allowed to grow over the last thirty years

Some substantial damage has been done to the Taliban and their cohorts by the continuing military operation in Swat. The ISPR spokesman has claimed, corroborating an earlier statement by the interior advisor, that 751 Taliban (‘miscreants’) have been killed up to May 11, while 71 members of the regular and paramilitary forces have been martyred.
Read More »The battle for Pakistan —Najmuddin A Shaikh

Musharraf says he did not ask Nawaz to seek Clinton’s help during Kargil operation

Former President Pervez Musharraf claims he had not asked then prime minister Nawaz Sharif to visit the US and talk to then US president Bill Clinton to “save the army” during the Kargil war.

In an interview with Dunya News on Thursday, Musharraf said the Taliban were a threat not only to Pakistan, but also to the world. He said President Asif Zardari was trying to steer the country out of the crises.
Read More »Musharraf says he did not ask Nawaz to seek Clinton’s help during Kargil operation


 It was the mid of 1999, I still remember the evening when I was introducing myself to a pretty German girl in Australia; I am from Pakistan and she asked me in a surprisingly strange way where Pakistan is. I again wish to meet the same girl; I am sure now I won’t have to tell her where Pakistan is; because it is all changed now. Pakistan is no more in oblivion. We should be thankful to the unforgettable 9/11 for this whole sale introduction of us; the same 9/11 which compelled the whole world revolve around Pakistan. Life is a simple game of three moments; one which belonged to us; one which we own now and the one which is expected to be ours; the past, the present and the future. Successful are those who keep looking back at their yesterday and intelligent are those who are always conscious of their tomorrow but the luckiest ones are those who try to make their present everlasting provided that their present is something to be proud of. We the Pakistanis are surely among those luckiest ones.Read More »GOING BACK TO YESTERDAY-ALI SUKHANVER

Cost of power outages to the Pakistan economy

By Shahid Javed Burki


THE second annual report of the Beaconhouse Institute of Public Policy offers a menu of options for the policymakers in Islamabad.


Joining me as the authors of the report titled ‘State of the Economy: Emerging from the Crises’ are some of the more experienced policy analysts including Sartaj Aziz, Aisha Ghaus-Pasha, Parvez Hasan, Akmal Hussain, Shahid Kardar and Hafiz Pasha. Read More »Cost of power outages to the Pakistan economy

Remittances up 19pc as overseas Pakistanis seen returning home

KARACHI: Remittances sent home by overseas Pakistanis jumped 19 per cent year-on-year in April 2009 as the worst prediction of the government officials started to come true with more expats coming back clutching on to their belongings after losing jobs abroad.

Last month remittances increased to $697.52 million as compared to $590.7 million received in the same month of 2008, reflecting what employment agencies call transfer of capital mostly from the Middle East.

“Labourers in cities like Dubai, which has been hit by a property slump, are coming back in large numbers,” says Zohair Ashir, CEO of Access Consulting. “That is what seems to be adding up to higher remittances.”Read More »Remittances up 19pc as overseas Pakistanis seen returning home