Islamabad: Federal Minister for Informationa and Bradcasting Chauhdry Fawad Hussain has said court proceedings in connection with the cases of PML-N leader Mian Shehbaz Sharif should be live telecast and that cameras be installed at the courts to let the people of Pakistan know about the nature of case.
Minister for Information and Broadcasting Chaudhry Fawad Hussain on Monday made a passionate appeal to the judiciary to allow live telecast of court proceeding in PML-N President Shehbaz Sharif’s cases.
“In our opinion, the courts’ proceedings over of Shehbaz Sharif’s case should be telecast live by allowing cameras so that people should know the reality involved in his case,” he said while addressing a news conference.
He said public had every right to know as to how the Sharif family laundered money through accounts of their agents and peons.
Likewise, the nation also wanted accountability of the Zardari family which also allegedly remained involve in corruption and money laundering through fake accounts.
“Our only appeal to the courts is that the people of this county has a right to see whether the allegations against them are correct or not,” he said, while urging the top judiciary to allow live telecast of the hearings of the cases filed against different opposition leaders for plundering national wealth.
“The people get frustrated,” he said while quoting Prime Minister Imran Khan as saying that it was imperative to recover looted money from the corrupt elements as three to four years had already been passed.
He said the live telecast and daily hearing of their cases would help the people to ascertain as to how those politicians had plundered them during their tenures. Recovery of public money from corrupt people should be made at the earliest.
Fawad said the cases against Zardari and Sharif families should be expedited as it would be mockery of state if the looted money was not recovered from them.
He said both the Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) and Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP) followed identical models for corruption during their governmental tenures as specific persons were nominated for amassing the state resources in their accounts. It had now been exposed as to how both the parties created network of [fake] accounts, he added.
The minister said startling revelations came to the light after Omni scandal was surfaced and revealed that suspicious transactions were made through some five thousands fake accounts.
Some Rs 12 billion had been recovered so far, he added.
Likewise, Shehbaz Sharif after becoming chief minister of Punjab abolished the local government system and usurped its financial resources which were later deposited to the accounts of ‘Shehbaz Sharif and Company’.
He said an amount of Rs 4 billion was found to the account of Malik Maqsood who was peon at the Ramzan Sugar mill owned the Sharif family. Likewise, Telegraphic transfers worth billions of rupee were made in the name of Manzoor, who used to sell snack, and Mushtaq Cheeni and later poured in the accounts Shehbaz Sharif and his children.
“This is the system abolished by the prime minister by bringing an empowered local government system,” he remarked.
Fawad said the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) government took revolutionary steps to empower the people at grassroots level. The previous governments had failed to introduce an empowered local government system in the country, he pointed out.
He said though multiple powers were transferred to the provinces from federation after 18th constitutional amendment, but it could not be further devolved to districts that hampered development of the cities.
The PPP government in Sindh was not giving due share of the people of Karachi which increased their sufferings, he said, adding the districts would get their full share under the new local government system introduced by Prime Minister Imran Khan.
Under the new system, the Mayors would be elected by the people directly to run their districts, he said, adding the same system was already in practice in New York, London and Paris.
He regretted that the Sindh government had not only deprived its people of health card facility, but also remained reluctant to take part in carrying out the basic reforms in the local government, which was highly condemnable.
Fawad said economy was on verge of collapse when the PTI came into the power, but it successfully achieved 5.37% growth of Gross Domestic Product (GDP) despite the impact of coronvirus pandemic.
He said the smart lockdown policy was in PM Imran Khan’s credit as he was the only leader who decided against locking down the whole country.
The entire world initially imposed complete lock-down to contain the pandemic, but later eased the restrictions.
Even, British Prime Minister Boris Johnson was asking to adopt smart-lock down policy, he added.
“Our economy is progressing due to the right decisions taken by Prime Minister Imran Khan and per capita income has jumped to $1650 from from $1400.
He said there had been impact of global inflation on the country but it was also a fact that the income of citizens had also increased.
Some hundred companies had earned record profit of Rs 929 billion, he said, adding the prime minister had called upon the companies to raise their employees’ salaries.
To a query, the minister said the Attorney General had written a letter to Shehbaz Sharif asking him to explain the reasons for not bringing his brother Nawaz Sharif back from London as he already submitted an affidavit in the court.
He said it was strange that Nawaz Sharif, on the one hand, was holding meeting at his residence in London, while on the other side denied its ownership in public.
Fawad also lashed out at both the brothers Nawaz and Shehbaz for taking plea in their defence at court that the law of Pakistan did not apply on their children. Ironically, their children became owners of palatial palaces even before their birth, he added.
Fawad said it was habit of the Sharif family to influence the judiciary. They got exposed in the matter pertaining to affidavit of former chief judge of Gilgit-Baltistan Rana Shamim.
He said the tape of UK solicitor Charles Guthrie had confirmed that Nawaz Sharif dictated the affidavit to Rana Shamim at his office. Nawaz Sharif who did not rebutted it should be penalized.
To a query, he said former PM’s advisor on accountability Shahzad Akbar performed well in difficult circumstances and exposed the corrupt people.
Pakistan committed to promote environment of peace, stability in South Asia
"Pakistan adheres to the latest international standards on export controls and maintains the highest standards of nuclear safety and security"
Islamabad: Pakistan is committed to the promotion of an environment of peace and stability in South Asia while preserving its capability to ward off aggression or adventurism in any form.
In a press release in connection with Youm-e-Takbeer being observed on Saturday, Foreign Office Spokesperson Asim Iftikhar said the tests conducted in 1998 not only demonstrated the resolve of the Pakistani nation to safeguard the country's territorial integrity, independence, and sovereignty, but also the desire to preserve strategic balance in South Asia.
He said we are partners in international efforts to strengthen the global non-proliferation regime based on the principles of non-discrimination and equal security for all states.
The spokesperson said Pakistan adheres to the latest international standards on export controls and maintains the highest standards of nuclear safety and security.
He also paid tributes to its scientists, engineers and technicians in ensuring Pakistan's security saying that the nation also deeply appreciates the contributions of Pakistan's nuclear programme to the country's socio-economic development.
Govt coalition agrees on name of Justice (r) Maqbool Baqar as Chairman NAB
The government believes the Opposition Leader will also support the government's pick
Islamabad: The government and its coalition partners have agreed on name of Justice (retd) Maqbool Baqar as the new Chairman of the National Accountability Bureau (NAB).
According to sources privy with the development, the name of a former Supreme Court judge came under discussion during a meeting of Prime Minister Imran Khan and former president Asif Ali Zardari.
Sources further said that Government believes the Opposition Leader of the National Assembly will also support the government pick as Maqbool Baqar’s judicial career is spotless.
Government members are hopeful that if all goes smoothly, Justice (retd) Maqbool Baqar will be the new head of the anti-graft watchdog.
More than 200 cases of monkeypox worldwide: EU disease agency
The United Kingdom has 71 confirmed cases
Stockholm: The number of confirmed cases of monkeypox worldwide has reached 219 outside of countries where it is endemic, according to an update released by the European Union’s disease agency.
More than a dozen countries where monkeypox is unusual, mostly in Europe, have reported at least one confirmed case, the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC) said in an epidemiological note released Wednesday night.
“This is the first time that chains of transmission are reported in Europe without known epidemiological links to West or Central Africa, where this disease is endemic,” the note said.
It added that most of the cases were detected in young men, self-identifying as men who have sex with men.
The United Kingdom – where monkeypox’s unusual appearance was first detected in early May – currently has the largest bulk of confirmed cases, 71.
It is followed by Spain with 51 cases and Portugal, 37.
Outside of Europe, Canada has 15 and the United States has nine.
The total number of cases reported Wednesday has increased fivefold since its first count on May 20, when the EU agency said there were 38 cases.
Contagion risk is “very low”, the ECDC said earlier this week, but warned that people who have had multiple sexual partners – regardless of sexual orientation – are more at risk.
“The clinical presentation is generally described to be mild,” it said, adding that there has been no deaths.
Monkeypox – a less severe disease compared to its cousin smallpox – is endemic in 11 countries in West and Central Africa.
It spreads by a bite or direct contact with an infected animal’s blood, meat or bodily fluids, and initial symptoms include a high fever before quickly developing into a rash.
People infected with it also get a chickenpox-like rash on their hands and face.
No treatment exists but the symptoms usually clear up after two to four weeks, and it is not usually fatal.
Maria Van Kerkhove, the emerging disease lead for the World Health Organization, said Monday that monkeypox is a “containable situation”.
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