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                          C O N T E N T S 

N A T I O N A L   N E W S
FO Pakistan test-fires Ghauri missile
Pakistan's offer of talks to India intact: Nawaz
Nawaz asks IPPs to reduce power rates
US for talks on Kashmir
MQM to wait till 18th: 3 options under study  
Pakistanis in UK face racial discrimination: CRE official
Benazir sees Nawaz's fall by next year  
Uniform policy to be followed in privatization
'Vigilance at borders can help check smuggling'
UK firms interested in road projects

B U S I N E S S  &  E C O N O M Y 
India to import 10,000 tons of Basmati rice
Private bank deposits: Alarming trend towards dollarization
Govt offers four-point formula to IPPs
Price war may lower power tariff
Move to facilitate Rs100bn investment
Industrial activity at Hub stagnant
USC losses surge to Rs 447 million
Recommendations to humanize IMF
Consumer Price Index rises by 9.59pc in 12 months

E D I T O R I A L S  &  F E A T U R E S
Storming of the Supreme Court - 2                 Ardeshir Cowasjee
Belly up in Keamari                                   Irfan Hussain          
Getting the equation right                            Omar Kureishi
Thieves of Dhaka                                     Hafizur Rahman
Vajpayee's three faces                                Afzal Mahmood

S P O R T S 
Nicol beats Jansher to win British Open
Pakistan defeat India in last volleyball match
ABL defeat PIA to retain National one-day trophy

                     N A T I O N A L   N E W S 
Target hit without error: FO Pakistan test-fires Ghauri missile
Hasan Akhtar

ISLAMABAD, April 6: Pakistan on Monday carried out a successful 
flight test of the surface-to-surface Hatf-V (Ghauri) missile with 
a range of 1,500 kilometres (937 miles) and a payload capacity of 
700 kg.
Foreign Office spokesman Tariq Altaf told a news conference the 
missile was tested to hit a target at 1,100 kilometres and it 
completed the exercise without "any error." It was not a computer 
test, he clarified in response to a question.
The spokesman said that the test was a significant step forward in 
Pakistan's indigenous missile and satellite launch programmes 
related to defence.
"We are fully satisfied with the results of the test," the 
spokesman added.
He said the missile was in "research and development" phase, when 
asked whether Pakistan planned to deploy the missile along the 
border to counter India's Prithvi missile.
Mr Altaf said the missile had "no relevance" to China's M-II 
missile, saying it had been developed by Pakistani scientists alone 
with indigenous resources. He said that range and payload capacity 
of Hatf-V would be upgraded.
He avoided naming the exact site of the test and also did not 
confirm whether the prime minister or other high officials 
witnessed the flight test.
To a question about the fallout of the test on regional security 
environment and on the prospects of Pakistan-India talks, the 
spokesman said the flight test was primarily related to security 
needs and was defence specific. He dismissed the view that the test 
might retard efforts to revive stalled talks, pointing out that 
India had already taken a lead by developing a variety of medium 
and long-range ballistic missiles, but Islamabad never viewed it as 
an impediment to holding talks.
The spokesman brushed aside last month's press reports that 
Pakistan had abandoned test flight of the missile earlier under US 
pressure, saying those were merely speculations. He also denied 

that as a quid pro quo, Pakistan remitted the remaining period of 
five-year jail term of Ayaz Baloch, a Pakistani employee of US Drug 
Enforcement Agency. He said it was a coincidence that the test 
flight of the missile carried out and the remission in Ayaz 
Baloch's sentence was granted the same day.
The spokesman rejected the idea that the missile test would trigger 
arms race in the region and said Pakistan had been drawing world's 
attention to the "multiple number of tests of various kinds of 
missiles" by its neighbour.
Mr Altaf, however, said Pakistan was willing to resume talks with 
India in accordance with the Islamabad agreement envisaging 
formation of working groups for discussing Kashmir and security 
Asked whether Pakistan expected an adverse response from the US, 
the spokesman said Pakistan had been warning the world about the 
developments in the region over a period of years and it was our 
right to take steps to safeguard security.
He said Pakistan believed that the United States, which had been 
urging restraint to the two countries on armament, "would 
understand our security concerns and compulsions."
The US "is fully aware" of India's missile programme and recent 
declarations by India's new Hindu-nationalist government that it 
does not rule out building nuclear weapons.
Sources associated with defence development said the Ghauri was 
fired from Malute, near the city of Jhelum in northeastern 
Pakistan, at 7.25am local time and impacted the target near the 
southwestern city of Quetta at 7.33am.
The test missile weighed 16 tons - 13 tons of it fuel, one ton 
warhead and the rest casing and equipment - according to the 
sources. Western diplomatic sources confirmed the missile had been 
developed by Pakistan but said the "initial technology" was 
provided by China. "As far as we know it is built on the Chinese 
pattern," one diplomat said.
Pakistan television said the test was carried out overland. The 
missile went 350 kilometres up before taking the direction to the 
impact area within the Pakistan territory.

Pakistan's offer of talks to India intact: Nawaz
Staff Reporter

LAHORE, April 7: Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif, maintaining that 
Ghauri missile was developed in view of Pakistan's legitimate 
security concerns, said here on Tuesday that the country's policy 
of talks with India would remain unchanged.
Speaking at a news conference at the Lahore airport on his arrival 
here for Eid holidays, he said Pakistan had prepared its policy 
vis-a-vis India after much consideration and it would certainly 
yield positive results.
Pakistan, the prime minister said, did not have aggressive designs 
against any country. But at the same time, he asserted, Pakistan 
could not be indifferent to its defence requirements.
The Ghauri missile would help bolster national defence, the prime 
minister maintained. He said that the missile had been developed 

through indigenous technology and expertise, which by implication 
rejected reports that the new missile had been prepared with 
Chinese cooperation.
He said the missile had been developed after several years of hard 
work and added that the enemy would have to think hundred times 
before preparing any plan against Pakistan.
The prime minister regretted that Pakistan's institutions had been 
weakened and they had deviated from the objectives for which they 
had been established. He said he was trying to revive the 

Nawaz asks IPPs to reduce power rates
Staff Reporter

LAHORE, April 5: Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif on Sunday warned the 
Independent Power Plants (IPPs), set up under agreements signed 
with the Benazir government, to reduce their rates or the 
government would not purchase electricity from them.
He said Pakistan could simply not afford to buy power at 
prohibitive rates stipulated in the agreements.
The prime minister sounded the warning while addressing a weekly 
meeting at his Model Town residence.
Mr Nawaz Sharif alleged that the previous government had signed the 
thermal power agreements after getting kickbacks. He said the 
allegation was substantiated by the fact that Pakistan was provided 
electricity at a rate of Rs 3.50 per kilowatt hour in 1994-95, 
while four years later the same companies signed agreements with 
Bangladesh to provide electricity at Rs 1.25 per kilowatt hour. "Is 
it not an irregularity? What other proof is required to establish 
the point?"
The prime minister was of the view that high electricity rates were 
a major factor responsible for the price hike.
Referring to the privatization of the Kot Addu power plant, the 
prime minister said the deal was laden with corruption. He claimed 
that Pakistan could have earned a lot from this plant if it had not 
been sold. The buyers, he pointed out, broke even during the first 
two years.
Many people present at the meeting advised the prime minister to go 
ahead with the construction of the Kalabagh dam. He smiled and did 
not speak his mind.
LAW& ORDER: Referring to the law and order situation, he hoped that 
it would register a marked improvement in the near future. He said 
India was responsible for the recent bomb blasts in various parts 
of the country and he had already brought the matter to the notice 
of the world community.
Terrorist activities, the prime minister said, had harmed 
Pakistan's relations with several countries and instead of 
discussing avenues of cooperation with them, "we have to explain 
Pakistan's position vis-a-vis the killing of their nationals".
He cited the examples of his conversation with the presidents of 
Iran and the United States after the killing of their nationals.
He pointed out that the government had enacted the anti-terrorism 
act with a view to taking the accused to task without any delay. 

The law had been challenged before the Lahore High Court which had 
proposed various amendments in it.
He believed that now the high court would soon decide appeals 
against decisions of the anti-terrorist courts and pave the way for 
execution of the accused.
"I want the courts to decide cases overnight so that the accused 
are hanged without any delay. But the constitution and the law are 
an obstacle. The question of human rights is yet another 
US for talks on Kashmir
UNITED NATIONS, April 10: The United States would urge Pakistan and 
India to "go the extra mile" and hold a dialogue on Kashmir and 
other issues so as to halt the nuclear missile race in the region, 
spurred by recent developments.
This was stated by the US Ambassador to the United Nations, Bill 
Richardson, on Thursday on the eve of his departure for South Asia 
as President Clinton's special envoy.
He said his trip showed high-level interest of the United States in 
the region which was vital to "American security and foreign policy 
interests". He added:" President Clinton will be going to the area 
in the fall. We are laying the groundwork for the progress we hope 
to achieve during this important visit of the president to this 
highly important area."
Richardson's trip will begin with a visit to Bahrain and the US 
aircraft carrier Independence in the Gulf. He will also visit 
Bangladesh, India, Pakistan, Afghanistan, and Sri Lanka. He will be 
the first US official to meet new Indian Prime Minister Atal Behari 
Speaking about Richardson's visit to Pakistan, a senior State 
Department official said: " Pakistan is an old friend and ally of 
the US. We are looking to strengthen our relationship with Pakistan 
and look forward to meeting with Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif. This 
is all of our policy of enhanced engagement in the region", the 
official said.
On India, the official said: "The trip to India will cover whole 
range of issues, obviously UN-related, including the question of 
Delhi's claim to a permanent seat in the Security Council."
The United States said recently it would not back India's claim to 
a permanent seat in the Security Council; instead it would support 
a rotating permanent seat for the region.

MQM to wait till 18th: 3 options under study  
Omar R. Quraishi

KARACHI, April 6: The Muttahida Qaumi Movement will wait until 
April 18 before deciding on any future course of action, a senior 
party leader said on Monday.
The party is also considering three main options: one, to resign 
from the ministries it holds, both at the federal and provincial 
levels; two, to resign from the National Assembly and the Sindh 

Assembly but not the Senate; and three, to leave the coalition 
government altogether and sit in the opposition.
The party's parliamentary leader in the Senate and the deputy 
convener of its coordination committee, Aftab Ahmed Sheikh, told 
Dawn from Hyderabad (where he is convalescing after a traffic 
accident) that the MQM had first given a 48-hour ultimatum and then 
a month-long period to the government. He said elimination of the 
so-called 'no-go' areas was part of the written agreement the MQM 
had made with the Pakistan Muslim League and though the government 
had said it would act on this, there was "no evidence" that any 
such thing was happening.
The senator said that once the deadline passed, the party would not 
give any further ultimatums; its coordination committee would go 
into session and consider the above three options. The senator also 
said that,according to some reports he had received, members of the 
federal cabinet were trying to present a picture as if the 
government had prepared itself for any eventuality in case the MQM 
did leave the coalition. The options the government seemed to be 
considering, the MQM senator said, included even the possibility of 
the PML aligning with a forward bloc of the PPP, comprising upwards 
of six MPAs and even with some MQM MPAs.
The senator said his party was "very closely" watching the 
extension of parole of many of its ministers and legislators. A 
summary had been sent by the Sindh Home Department to the Sindh 
chief minister for approval, Mr Sheikh (himself on parole till 
April 17) said, but the party would see till what date the 
extension was given. Last time it was given for a six-month period, 
he added.
Mr Sheikh denied that his party's relations with its major ally, 
the PML, had deteriorated and also denied that Prime Minister Nawaz 
Sharif had refused to see an MQM delegation, referring it to lower-
ranking authorities.
"When I had met with the traffic accident the prime minister called 
me up in the hospital and even spoke to my wife who was also 
injured.If the situation was so bad, these things wouldn't have 
happened. I plan to get in touch with him (the PM) after Eid to 
arrange a meeting," he said.
Asked for what purpose had his party senator Nasreen Jalil gone to 
London, Mr Sheikh said she would discuss the political situation 
and party matters and that this was her first visit to London in 
four years. Responding to a related question, he said that in the 
coming few days, many more people would be going to and "coming 
from" London. Asked what he meant by the latter phrase, the senator 
laughed and said: "When those things happen you will find out."
Responding to another question, he said his party had no authentic 
information on whether the governor of Sindh was being replaced.
Pakistanis in UK face racial discrimination: CRE official
Staff Correspondent

LONDON, April 5: A senior official of Britian's Commission for 
Racial Equality (CRE) has said Pakistanis living in the United 
Kingdom are being treated as second-class citizens and judged by 
the colour of their skin and not by their achievements.
Speaking at a function held in Croydon to celebrate Pakistan Day, 
CRE commissioner Dr Z.U.Khan said Britons of Pakistani origin were 
fed up with this treatment.
A large number of Asians, particularly Pakistanis, live in this 
The function was attended by a number of MPs, Mayor of Croydon 
borough and members of the European Parliament, many of whom did 
not agree with Mr Khan's views.
He said the Britions of Pakistani origin had helped in boosting 
Britain's exports and created jobs for thousands of people in their 
businesses but still they were despised and treated as second-class 
"Once I am out in the street,I am not judged by what I am or what I 
can do but by what colour I am," he said. "This remains the 
situation despite the immense contribution of Pakistanis to the 
United Kingdom."
Dr Khan said the Britons of Pakistani origin were still perceived 
by the majority of people as a burden on society.
His views were dismissed as being too pessimistic by Crodyon MP 
Malcolm Wicks who said that in his constituency he saw children of 
all races playing together.
Tony Letts also disagreed with Mr Khan and said he was the mayor of 
Croydon borough, although he himself was an immigrant from Ireland, 
having come to this area in the 1960s to be trained as a male 
He said there were 47 different ethnic groups living peacefull in 
his borough where people spoke 193 languages.
European Parliament member and former minister James Morrhouse told 
the gathering that Britain was far better in race relations as 
compared to some other European Union members. He said Europe was 
planning new initiatives in race relations. 
"We have come farther than countries like France and Germany," he 
said, comparing the situation in Britain with that in other EU 

Benazir sees Nawaz's fall by next year  

LARKANA, April 4: PPP chairperson and opposition leader Benazir 
Bhutto on Saturday lashed out at Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif for 
lodging cases against her and assassinating her character through 
media trial only because she had rendered services for the people 
of Pakistan.
The former premier was addressing a public meeting held at Garhi 
Khuda Bux Bhutto in connection with the death anniversary of her 
father, Z.A. Bhutto, the founder chairman of PPP.
She claimed that Nawaz Sharif was bent upon eliminating PPP. "He 
wanted to disqualify me. He wanted to arrest me. Let him do this 
all. Let him hang me, but we should rest assured that he cannot 
eliminate PPP," said Ms Bhutto, adding that PPP would continue to 
exist as far as there was poverty in the country and as far as the 

growers did not get the actual prices of their crops.
She paid homage to the late Bhutto for the services he had rendered 
and pledged to follow his mission to eliminating poverty from the 
The opposition leader said Bhutto never surrendered before India 
and pulled the nation out of the bog of dismay and disappointment 
it had landed in in the aftermath of the split of country under 
military autocracy.
She said the late Bhutto was the symbol of federation and all those 
who believed in federation came to Garhi Khuda Bux Bhutto to pay 
homage to their leader.
She said the rulers were always afraid of PPP, because it was the 
party of poor, peasants and the oppressed, and it represented the 
people of backward areas who made its real strength.
AJK Prime Minister Barrister Sultan Mahmood Chaudhry, Chaudhry 
Ahmed Mukhtar, Masood Kousar, Saleh Ganjwal (who joined PPP after 
deserting PML), Rao Sikandar, Nisar Ahmed Khuhro, Senator Aitazaz 
Ahsan and others also spoke.
Uniform policy to be followed in privatization
Intikhab Amir

PESHAWAR, April 5: The federal government has asked the provincial 
governments to bring their privatization policies in uniformity 
with that of the centre, the NWFP Minister for Industries, Mr 
Yousuf Ayub Khan, told Dawn here on Saturday.
"Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif has personally asked all the four 
chief ministers to bring about uniformity in their privatisation 
policies by setting up bodies on the pattern of the federal Board 
of Investment (BOI)," said Mr Yousuf Ayub, who is holding at least 
six other portfolios of the provincial government.
In line with the prime minister's instructions, the NWFP government 
has dropped an earlier plan to set up a privatization commission 
for the disposal of public sector industrial units, rest houses and 
surplus agricultural land.
"A notification for the setting up of a BOI committee will soon be 
issued to streamline the privatization process in NWFP," said the 
minister for industries.
Some three months ago the NWFP government had announced the 
formation of a privatization commission after abolishing the NWFP 
Investment Committee (NIC), set up by the last Sherpao government 
in place of the then privatization commission.
The chief ministers will head the BOI of their respective province. 
However, NWFP Chief Minister Sardar Mehtab Ahmed Abbasi has asked 
Mr Yousuf Ayub to deputize for him on the NWFP board.
The provincial BOIs will work in line with the federal committee's 
rules and procedure.
This is for the third time during the 13-month rule of the 
provincial government that it has announced launching of its 
privatization process.
'Vigilance at borders can help check smuggling'

Aamir Shafaat Khan

KARACHI, April 7: Industrialists and importers express doubt over 
the government's plan to curb smuggling by rationalizing tariffs as 
they feel that the move could only bear fruits only when the 
authorities exercise strict check at borders.
They say that the government, since it came into power, has been 
paying lip service to check smuggling by deploying army jawans at 
the border but the decision is yet to materialize.
Sources said the government is bound to curtail the import duties 
(may be 35% in the coming budget) in order to fulfil the WTO 

UK firms interested in road projects
Ansar Abbasi

LONDON, April 7: Two British private companies have shown their 
interest in two major projects worth $1 billion in Pakistan, said 
Mian Riaz Samee, high commissioner of Pakistan in London.
"One is interested in running the Lahore-Islamabad Highway on BOT 
(build, operate and transfer) and the other wants to build the ring 
road at Lahore," Mr Samee said in an exclusive interview with the 
Dawn. Without disclosing the names of the companies, he said 
negotiations between the two sides were in progress.
But the high commissioner was not sure whether these negotiation 
would bear fruit, saying that the foreign investors had their 
concerns about the secure and safe investment of their money and 
they wanted to be satisfied in all respects. "It is, however, 
encouraging that in spite of the current law and order situation in 
Pakistan, the security concerns and the kind of international 
sabotage the country has recently been exposed to, we are getting 
serious offers from foreign investors."
The firm interested in operating the Lahore-Islamabad Highway on 
BOT involved an upfront investment of $650 million while the 
company negotiating for building ring road at Lahore would bring an 
investment of $365 million.
The high commission was approached by these two private companies 
following an investment conference in London in February 1998 which 
was addressed by the prime minister and attended by over 200, what 
he called, potential investors.
With regard to his role in improving trade relations between the 
two countries, he said Pakistan was at present looking at the 
export of non-traditional goods like fresh vegetables and fruits, 
to Britain which imported vegetables and fruits worth $1 billion 
every year from all around the world. He expressed his optimism 
over the exports of such non-traditional goods if Pakistan overcame 
the problems concerning prompt transportation and standard 
The ministry of commerce and the Export Promotion Bureau, he added, 
had already been advised by the high commission to overcome these 
bottlenecks. "The Export Promotion Bureau should acquaint the 
Pakistani exporters with the requirements of the international 

market through trade fairs and exhibitions", Mr Samee suggested.
                 B U S I N E S S  &  E C O N O M Y
India to import 10,000 tons of Basmati rice
Shaukat Ali
LAHORE, April 10: India, first time in many years, has decided to 
import rice from Pakistan, sources in the rice export sector told 
Dawn on Friday. 
India, which has been a close competitor of Islamabad in the rice 
export, is facing acute shortage of the commodity due to a bad crop 
this year. 
Sources said that initially Indian importers had placed orders of 
lifting around 10,000 tons basmati rice from different rice dealers 
in Pakistan. 
"Due to Indian weakness in the rice sector this year the Pakistani 
rice rates in the international markets have risen to $770 per ton 
from last year's $550, specially to European countries. But for 
India the rate is around $560 due to less transportation charges", 
a leading rice export house reported. 
Most of the commodity will be sent by rail. Some consignments from 
Karachi, however, would be shipped, the sources added. According to 
the Export Promotion Bureau sources here, Islamabad is poised to 
earn at least 20 to 25 per cent more this year over the earnings 
from rice export during 1996-97. 
Not only in terms of value but even volume-wise rice export in the 
present year had increased, sources added.

Private bank deposits: Alarming trend towards dollarization
Staff Reporter

KARACHI, April 4: Seven private sector banks, whose 1997 accounts 
have been released, have foreign currency deposits exceeding local 
currency deposits, by about 100-500 per cent.
A sectoral study by Socgen-Crosby shows 66:34 mix in favour of 
foreign currency which also indicates the alarming trend towards 
dollarization of economy.
However, the ratio would be much lower for local currency when 
total banking sector deposits are counted. The large national 
commercial banks and the privatized banks which hold 70 per cent of 
the total bank deposits have a much higher rupee mix in their 
deposit bases.
The banking sector's foreign to local currency mix as a whole is 
estimated at 35:65.
The foreign currency deposits of the seven banks amount to Rs 
56,467 million and the local currency deposits total up to Rs 
29,124 million.
These banks are Askari, Faysal, Metropolitan, Bank Al Habib, 
Soneri, Union and Bolan.
The SC study also indicates that the private sector banks' non-
performing loans (NPL) average four per cent higher than the 2.5 
generally assumed before 1997 results. The figure is however, 
skewed by Faysal Bank's much above average of 8.6 per cent, without 

which the level falls to 2.8 per cent. Even with Askari's 4.6 per 
cent, NPL level beats the sector average.

Govt offers four-point formula to IPPs
Ihtashamul Haque

ISLAMABAD, April 10: The government has offered four-point formula 
to all the 19 Independent Power Producers (IPPs) to resolve the 
issue of power tariffs, including delaying payments by the WAPDA.

Official sources told Dawn here on Friday that the government has 
finally told the IPPs to agree on a four-point formula to resolve 
their differences over power tariffs, failing which their Power 
Purchase Agreements (PAAs) will be cancelled unilaterally.
Sources claimed that the government has held successfully talks 
with the World Bank which eventually agreed to get the current 
power tariffs revised downward from the IPPs. They said the World 
Bank, which earlier opposed any reduction in power tariffs, has 
been convinced by the government over the issue.
According to the details, IPPs have been asked to reduce their 
tariffs by 20 to 25 per cent; get their payments to be paid by 
WAPDA rescheduled; enhance the completion date of their power 
projects; and that the government will get their loans rescheduled 
from foreign donors including the International Finance Corporation 
which has extended loans worth 400 million dollars to these IPPs.
"We have convinced the IPPs that their tariffs are too high to be 
accepted and that they should seriously take into account Rs 6 
billion monthly loss of WAPDA in this behalf", said the Minister 
for Water and Power Raja Nadir Pervaiz.
When approached he confirmed to Dawn that certain success has been 
achieved to get the present what he said,"enormously high power 
charges" reduced by the IPPs. " We are very much hopeful that 
differences with the IPPs will soon be over", he said adding that 
all the four points raised by the government has been appreciated 
by the World Bank and the IPPs.
Sources said that Minister for Finance Senator Sartaj Aziz and the 
Minister for Water and Power, Raja Nadir Pervaiz will soon leave 
for Washington to hold formal talks with the World Bank and the IFC 
over the issue of high tariffs being charged by the IPPs. They 
would also discuss with them the cancellation of two of the IPPs 
projects which, according to the government's claim, were 
commissioned after extending commissions and kickbacks to some 
influential people in the previous PPP government.
The issue of exporting 2000 mw surplus power to any third country, 
sources said, will also be discussed between the ministers and the 
donors representatives in Washington.
Sources said that the government which has earlier held open and 
secret talks with the IPPs would now again invite them to Islamabad 
shortly to discuss the issue before both the ministers leave for 
Officials said they were hopeful that differences with the IPPs 
will be resolved to the satisfaction of the government.

Price war may lower power tariff
Muhammad Aslam

Pakistan is still a little far away for achieving self- sufficiency 
in power generation and there are no immediate possibility of a 
glut but an imminent price war among the private sector units tells 
that production costs might not be that higher as widely speculated 
or projected by the sponsors of both the local and the foreign 
thermal power plants.
Some of the thermal-based private sector small and medium units set 
up a couple of years ago under the new energy policy have already 
offered to cut their selling rates to bulk consumers depending on 
their annual consumption figures and terms of sale agreements.
"The offer is in the form of discount not the actual tariff cut but 
it aims at netting new consumers to buy surplus power direct from 
them rather than through WAPDA," a private sector energy unit 
official says.
However, foreign sponsored units including Hub-Power,which last 
year sold power worth about Rs.20 billion to WAPDA are not inclined 
to offer any discount as their sale agreements are guaranteed by 
both the Pakistan government and the international donor 
agencies.Even the recent whispering about tariff rate revisions was 
not entertained by them.
Some of them are worried over this unexpected development and might 
have to chalk out a new strategy to meet the possible threat to 
their guaranteed annual profits based on their generation capacity.
"It is a serious move and the price war may engulf the entire 
budding energy sector in due course but could two selling rates 
work for a longer period", some of them ask.
"If the economies of scale are correctly adhered to in broader 
economic terms,foreign units have an edge over the local smaller 
ones and could well lead the way", some of the energy experts 
But foreign sponsors complain of higher production costs and other 
overheads owing to corporate and other taxes,higher import duty on 
the major industrial raw materials,notably furnace oil and claim 
only official relief could lower their costs,which could be passed 
on to the consumers.
"The move appears to be officially-inspired apparently to counter 
the foreign media adverse comments on the controvertialissue of 
power tariff revision", some of the sponsors said adding "how can 
local owners could sell energy to any prospective buyers without 
the approval of WAPDA,which owns the entire distribution network in 
the country".
Whatever shape the current moves take in the coming months, no one 
could deny the fact that cheaper energy could provide the much-
needed boost to exporters, most industrialists believe.
Move to facilitate Rs100bn investment

Ihtashamul Haque

ISLAMABAD, April 7: The government has decided to expedite the 
setting up of "National Stock Exchange" by early 1998-99 to 
facilitate estimated Rs 100 billion new investment.
Informed sources told Dawn here on Tuesday that the government 
expected Rs 100 billion local and foreign investment in the 
proposed National Stock Exchange, provided it was established 
during early part of the next financial year.
One of the major reasons to have this National Stock Exchange in 
place as early as possible was to get 150 million dollar from the 
Asian Development Bank (ADB) which had originally approved 250 
million dollar loan for Capital Development Market Programme. The 
bank had earlier disbursed 100 million dollars for the purpose.
Sources said that there was an early requirements of National 
Clearing House on the pattern of Central Depository which could 
invite lot of local and foreign investment. Initially, the 
government was told that Rs 100 billion could come if this National 
Stock Exchange was set up.
So far an investment of about Rs 475 billion has been made in the 
country's stock exchanges. "We expect the present level of 1500 
index to jump to 1800 immediately, once the National Stock Exchange 
is established", said an official who was sure to have Rs 100 
billion new investment through a new national level stock exchange.
According to the ADB, there was a big potential for inviting local 
and foreign investment in Pakistan through the setting up of a 
National Stock Exchange. Sources said ever since the ADB decided to 
offer 250 million Capital Development Loan, foreign investors had 
started expressing their interest to invest in Pakistan.
The ADB loan programme focuses on broadening and deepening the 
financial liberalization process. The capital market in Pakistan 
has registered substantial growth in the 1990s in response to the 
opening of the market to investors and the liberalization of the 
policy and regulatory frameworks for key market participants.
To address these issues, the government has been asked by the ADB 
to adopt Capital Market Development Programme (CMDP), which aims to 
develop the securities market for facilitating the efficient 
allocation of resources in the economy and help broaden and deepen 
the financial sector, while providing alternative sources of 
funding to industry, which has traditionally relied on government 
directed credit.
The main objective of CMDP is to augment the mobilization of long-
term resources and improve the efficiency of their allocation 
through a diversified and competitive capital market, which 
encourages broad-based participation of issuers and investors. 
Industrial activity at Hub stagnant
S.Azam Ali

QUETTA, April 7: Industrial activity at Balochistan's principal 
industrial estate, Hub, about 18 km from Karachi, has become 
stagnant, because of resource constraints, heavy taxation and 

withdrawal of industrial incentives forcing entrepreneurs to shift 
their existing plants and projects to other places.
Knowledgeable quarters told Dawn Tuesday that multiplying inter-
provincial disparity in infrastructure development had not only 
kept Balochistan backward, it had adversely affected entrepreneurs 
and investors in Hub estate. 
In spite of investing huge capital in Hub industries, Balochistan 
has not been able to achieve the results due to neglect and 
disparity and the task of stimulating investment is becoming more 
and more difficult.
Hub industrial Estate (HIE) has 1440 developed plots of varying 
sizes but only 351 plots could be allotted. Of nearly 200 other 
plants which were in operation, according to knowledgeable sources, 
more than 50% these industrial concerns have now been closed down 
due to following factors:
(1) higher taxation structure, zila tax (district tax) and octroi 
duty. Octroi duty is said to be about 30% higher as compared to 
industrial estates in Sindh and Punjab.
(2) tax holidays have been withdrawn, which should have been 
renewed for a period of four years for newly emerging industries 
from the date of commencement of operation/production. 
More than 151 cases are pending for fiscal incentives/tax holidays. 
The rates of concession should have been also reduced to half for 
the next four years. Similar concessions should have been granted 
in respect of octroi duty and dist tax.
(3) lack of local trained manpower.
The industry sources suggested that package of incentives, income 
tax holidays, exemption of from custom duty on import of spare 
parts for existing machinery, full exemption from octroi duty and 
district tax should be announced for the revival of sick industries 
and optimal use of on-going industries at the HIE, making it 
equally attractive for investors.

USC losses surge to Rs 447 million
Muhammad Ilyas

ISLAMABAD, April 4: The losses of Utility Stores Corporation had 
soared to Rs 44.7 crore by the end of March 1998, thanks to inept 
management and corruption, an informed source told Dawn here on 
Yet USC was one of the few public sector organizations which was 
acclaimed internationally as a success and scored profits 
continuously for about 10 years, the source remarked. Its profit in 
1994-95 had mounted to Rs 1.62 crore.
After more than a quarter century of its existence, through its 850 
stores, it has its presence in remotest corners of the country to 
protect the people from the kind of political instability that 
arose from non-availability of essential commodities in the past.
Discounting the nature of the crisis cited by the present Managing 
Director, the source said the sales had dropped from Rs 11.7 
billion in 1995-96 to Rs 1.3 billion by December 1997 because of 
the failure of the present management to maintain its inventory 

Recommendations to humanize IMF

ISLAMABAD, April 6: Ways should be found to both humanize and 
demystify the International Monetary Fund's image, so as to assuage 
the political hazard associated with its policy prescriptions, a 
panel of independent experts appointed by the IMF's Executive Board 
has emphasized.
The panel, says an IMF report received here on Friday, was 
established to evaluate IMF's Enhanced Structural Adjustment 
Facility (ESAF) as part of its plan to obtain an independent and 
fresh outside perspective on various IMF policies for complementing 
the Fund's own in-house evaluations.
This, interestingly, coincides with the worldwide criticism of the 
manner of IMF's functioning in the backdrop of economic collapse of 
the erstwhile 'Asian tigers'.
The panel comprises Dr Kwesi Botchwey, Harvard Institute for 
International Development; Prof Paul Collier, Oxford University; 
Prof Jan Willem Gunning, Free University, Amsterdam; and Prof 
Koichi Hamada, Yale University.
Pakistan is one of the beneficiaries of ESAF, together with EFF 
(Extended Fund Facility), under an agreement involving a credit of 
$1.6 billion.
ESAF was established in 1987 to promote balance of payments 
viability and growth in low-income countries, through mobilization 
of domestic and external resources, improvements in resource 
allocation and the removal of structural impediments.
The experts concentrated on three specific areas: i) Social 
policies and composition of government spending ii) Developments in 
countries' external position and iii) Determinants of influences of 
differing degrees of national ownership of ESAF-supported 
In line with the terms of reference, they also selected a sampling 
of geographically diverse countries for each of the three topics. 
The countries chosen by them for the purpose were: Cote d'Ivoire, 
Malawi, Uganda, Zimbabwe and Zambia in Africa; Bangladesh and 
Vietnam in Asia, and Bolivia in Latin America. Besides visiting 
those countries, they also held discussions with senior IMF and 
World Bank executives.
In its report, the panel recommended, inter alia, that:
* At a sufficiently high management level, the IMF should engage in 
intensive and informal policy dialogue with the country's political 
leadership to understand a country's political constraints and 
* The timing and duration of IMF staff missions should be arranged 
to allow adequate time for country preparation in advance of 
negotiation and consensus-building during the negotiation process 
* Steps should be taken to relieve any concern about the IMF's 
perceived inflexibility in negotiations through introduction of an 
element of choice in the negotiation of programme design.
* The IMF should develop a more systematic mechanism for providing 
ex post support for country-initiated formal agreement with the IMF 

for mainly political reasons.
* IMF/World Bank relations should be better coordinated. 
*Resident missions should be strengthened or established in all 
ESAF countries to reinforce strategies to foster country ownership, 
particularly with a view to assessing the social impact of reform 
The Executive Directors of IMF, the report adds, did not endorse 
all of the views expressed by external evaluators. They agreed, 
however, that the IMF-prescribed economic reforms "do entail 
temporary costs for certain segments of the population."
"Everything should be done in programme designed to protect such 
groups, including provision of well-targeted assistance to the more 
vulnerable groups and allocation of adequate resources for social 
factors," they further conceded.
These actions plus the sequencing of fiscal and other structural 
reforms with a view to minimizing social impact, they further 
remarked, would help policymakers to build a domestic consensus in 
favour of important but difficult reform measures.

Consumer Price Index rises by 9.59pc in 12 months
ISLAMABAD, April 10: The Consumer Price Index (CPI) increased by 
7.32% during March 1998 compared to the corresponding month of last 
year, according to the Federal Bureau of Statistics data released 
here on Friday.
However, the three indicators of price movement, Sensitive Price 
Indicator (SPI), Consumer Price Index (CPI) and Wholesale Price 
Index (WPI) for the running 12 months i.e. April,1997-March,1998, 
showed an increase of 9.87%, 9.59% and 8.56% respectively, over the 
corresponding 12 months of last year, i.e. April,1996-March,1997.
An interesting feature of the latest data that the highest increase 
(9.87%) was in SPI which is relevant to the lowest paid employees 
with salaries up to Rs 1500 per month and covers 47 essential 
The statistics show that the price of electricity alone soared by 
about 17.0% within March 1998 over the previous month and by 22.02% 
compared with the corresponding month of 1997. These figures 
indicate only average change, whereas the electricity charges were 
increased by 34.6% to 48.2% at one go in March, 1998. The cost of 
foodstuffs, house rent and education also increased, respectively, 
by 7.32%, 9.08% and 6.33% over March 1997. In these groups, 
foodstuffs registered the highest increase of 1.11% over the 
previous month.
Among major groups of essential items, "cleaning, laundry & 
personal appearance" alone posted growth. The CPI for this group 
decreased by 0.51% from 202.93 of March 1997 to 201.60% as at the 
end of last month. The index for medicines is shown to have risen 
by 2.34% during March 1998 compared to March 1997 and by 0.04% over 
February 1998.
Likewise, the group "apparel, textile & footwear" increased by 
3.45%, "household furniture & equipment etc." by 3.91%, and 
"transport & communication" by 1.51%, over the corresponding month 

of last year.
As part of the increasing trend of increasing prices, according to 
the report, SPI, CPI and WPI increased during the month by 0.51%, 
1.77% and 1.73% respectively over the previous month.
The SPI, CPI and WPI for the running quarter January-March, 1998 
showed an increase of 0.50%, 1.10% and 1.20% respectively, over the 
previous quarter October-December, 1997. The SPI, CPI and WPI for 
the quarter January-March 1998 showed an increase of 5.98%, 6.02% 
and 4.39% respectively, over the corresponding quarter of last 
year, January-March, 1997.
The main items which showed increase in their prices during March, 
1998 over February, 1998 are as under:
Food, beverages & tobacco: Chilies green (76.06%), cauliflower 
(39.67%), cucumber (27.7%), kinnow (26.8%), malta (25.9%), radish 
(24.2%), mosambi (22.5%), onions (21.5%), eggs (18.8%), carrot 
(9.8%), turnip (7.5%), Dalda cooking oil (7.3%), pistachio (4.6%), 
maize (4.0%), apple (3.5%), chilghoza (2.6%), tea loose (2.6%), 
vegetable ghee tin (2.4%), coffee (2.2%), fish (2.0%), pakwan 
cooking oil (1.9%), pulse masoor washed (1.6%), rice basmati 
(1.5%), pulse moong washed (1.5%), sweet meat (1.3%), dal cooked 
(1.1%), bajra (1.0%), lassi (1.0%), and curd (1.0%).
Fuel & lighting: Electric charges (34.62% to 48.42%).
Household, furniture & equipment: Deep-freezer (1.6%), air-
conditioner (1.0%), stainless steel plate (1.0%) and single bed 
Recreation, entertainment & education: Maths book Ist year/Inter 
(7.1%), daily Nawa-e-Waqt (4.1%), physics book Ist year/Inter 
(3.7%), chemistry book Ist year/Inter (2.6%), English book class 
IX/X (1.3%), Urdu book Ist year/Inter (1.1%), English book Ist 
year/Inter (1.0%) and pen ink (1.0%).
The main items which showed decrease in their prices during March, 
1998 over February, 1998 are as under:
Food, beverages, & tobacco: Garlic (34.7%), potatoes (6.9%), 
chicken farm (5.85%), sugar (3.6%), guava (3.2%), gur (3.15%), 
pulse gram (2.4%), communised white (2.3%), cabbage (1.6%), wheat 
(1.6%), pepper black (1.4%), peas (1.4%) and besan (1.2%).

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              E D I T O R I A L S  &  F E A T U R E S
Storming of the Supreme Court - 2
Ardeshir Cowasjee

TO borrow Information Minister Mushahid Hussain's favourite opening 
49-letter word, "thegovernmentofprimeministernawazsharif" will not 
be forgiven for many years to come for having demeaned our 
judiciary to the extent it has for its own selfish good and 
At present, a Supreme Court Bench headed by Justice Nasir Aslam 
Zahid, sitting with Justices Munawar Ali Mirza and Abdur Rahman 
Khan is investigating the storming of the Court by the rowdies and 
supporters, and parliamentarians, of the ruling party on November 
28 1997. The Judges delve deep into details and with their 
experience can easily perceive who is and who is not lying under 
oath. Reports published last month in this newspaper and the report 
front-paged on April 3 under the heading "PML trying cover-up : SC" 
substantiate this.
The people must not forget that this is the first case of its kind 
in the recorded judicial history of any democracy. It is 
unprecedented that a ruling party, a government of the day, has 
committed contempt "in the face of the court" by perverting the 
course of justice with a preplanned invasion.
Morris v Crown Office was the first case in Britain in which the 
Court of Appeal had to consider 'contempt in the face of the 
Court'. The Rt Hon Lord Denning, then Master of the Rolls, in his 
book "The Due Process of Law," published in 1980, devotes a chapter 
to the dramatic invasion of the Court by a group of Welsh students 
who were upset because programmes to Wales were being broadcast in 
English and not in Welsh. He recounts :
"Eleven young students had been sentenced to prison. Each for three 
months. They were all from the University of Aberystwyth. They were 
imbued with Welsh fervour. They had been sentenced on Wednesday, 4 
February 1970. I always see that urgent cases are dealt with 
expeditiously. We started their appeal on Monday, 9 February and 
decided it on Wednesday, 11 February. I also have some say in the 
constitution of the Court. So I arranged for one of the Welsh Lords 
Justices to sit. Lord Justice Arthian Davies was well qualified. He 
was not only Welsh. He could speak Welsh. He sat with Lord Justice 
Salmon and me. We heard the argument on Monday and Tuesday. We 
discussed the case on Wednesday morning and delivered judgment on 
the Wednesday afternoon." He goes on to give extracts from this 
judgment (1970 2 QB 114) :
"Last Wednesday, just a week ago, Lawton J, a judge of the High 
Court here in London, was sitting to hear a case. It was a libel 

case between a naval officer and some publishers. He was trying it 
with a jury. It was no doubt an important case, but for the 
purposes of today it could have been the least important. It 
matters not. For what happened was serious indeed. A group of 
students, young men and young women, invaded the court. It was 
clearly pre-arranged. They had come all the way from their 
University of Aberystwyth. They strode into the well of the court. 
They flocked into the public gallery. They shouted slogans. They 
scattered pamphlets. They sang songs. They broke up the hearing. 
The judge had to adjourn. They were removed. Order was restored.
"When the judge returned to the court, three of them were brought 
before him. He sentenced each of them to three months' imprisonment 
for contempt of court. The others were kept in custody until the 
rising of the court. Nineteen were then brought before him. The 
judge asked each of them whether he or she was prepared to 
apologise. Eight of them did so. The judge imposed a fine of fifty 
pounds on each of them and required them to enter into 
recognisances to keep the peace. Eleven of them did not apologise. 
They did it, they said, as a matter of principle and so did not 
feel able to apologise. The judge sentenced each of them to 
imprisonment for three months for contempt of court.
"In sentencing these young people in this way the judge was 
exercising a jurisdiction which goes back for centuries. It was 
well described over 200 years ago by Wilmot J in an opinion which 
he prepared but never delivered. "It is a necessary incident," he 
said, "to every court of justice to fine and imprison for contempt 
of the court acted in the face of it." That is R v Almon (1765) 
Wilm 243 254. The phrase "contempt in the face of the court" has a 
quaint old-fashioned ring about it; but the importance of it is 
this; of all the places where law and order must be maintained, it 
is here in these courts. The course of justice must not be 
deflected or interfered with. Those who strike at it, strike at the 
very foundations of our society. To maintain law and order, the 
judges have, and must have, power at once to deal with those who 
offend against it. It is a great power - a power instantly to 
imprison a person without trial - but it is a necessary power. So 
necessary, indeed, that until recently the judges exercised it 
without any appeal. There were previously no safeguards against a 
judge exercising his jurisdiction wrongly or unwisely. This was 
remedied in the year 1960. An appeal now lies to this court; and, 
in a suitable case, from this court to the House of Lords. With 
these safeguards this jurisdiction can and should be maintained.
"Eleven of these young people have exercised this right to appeal 
and we are here concerned with their liberty : and our law puts the 
liberty of the subject before all else.
"............ I hold, therefore, that a judge of the High Court 
still has power at common law to commit instantly to prison for 
criminal contempt, and this power is not affected in the least by 
the provisions of the Act of 1967. The powers at common law remain 

intact. It is a power to fine or imprison, to give an immediate 
sentence or to postpone it, to commit to prison pending his 
consideration of the sentence, to bind over to be of good behaviour 
and keep the peace, and to bind over to come for judgment if called 
upon. These powers enable the judge to give what is, in effect, a 
suspended sentence........
"[The Advocate conducting the defence] says that the sentences were 
excessive. I do not think they were excessive, at the time they 
were given and in the circumstances then existing. Here was a 
deliberate interference with the course of justice . . . . It was 
necessary for the judge to show that this kind of thing cannot be 
tolerated. Let students demonstrate ........But they must do it by 
lawful means and not by unlawful. If they strike at the course of 
justice in this land..... they strike at the roots of society 
itself, and they bring down that which protects them. It is only by 
the maintenance of law and order that they are privileged to be 
students and to study and live in peace. So let them support the 
law, not strike it down."
Lord Denning's decision was that the law had been vindicated by the 
sentences passed by the High Court judge, that the students had 
already served a week in prison, and that it had been shown that 
they had done very wrong by invading the court, by committing 
contempt in the face of the court. He, therefore, ordered that they 
be released that day, that they be bound over for good behaviour to 
keep the peace and come up for judgment if called upon within the 
next 12 months.
Also on the matter of contempt, and on the need for courts to 
maintain their dignity and authority, Lord Denning quotes from his 
judgment in the case of Balogh v St Albans Crown Court (1975 1 QB 
"The judges should not hesitate to exercise the authority they 
inherit from the past. Insults are to be treated with disdain - 
save when they are gross and scandalous. Refusal to answer with 
admonishment - save where it is vital to know the answer. But 
disruption of the court or threats to witnesses or to jurors should 
be visited with immediate arrest. Then a remand in custody and,if 
it can be arranged, representation by counsel. If it comes to a 
sentence, let it be such as the offence deserves - with the 
comforting reflection that,if it is in error, there is an appeal to 
this court."
In the case of the Welsh students, the Court was invaded on 
February 4, they were sentenced on February 4, the appeal was heard 
on February 9 and decided on February 11 - all within the space of 
one week.

Belly up in Keamari                                  
Irfan Husain
Over the years, I must have gone on at least a score of fishing 
expeditions, and have still to persuade a single fish to swallow 
the hook, and not just the bait.

Our recent excursion was no exception, and I returned empty- 
handed. I am glad to report that my friends fared little better, 
with one unfortunate six-inch toddler being our only trophy. The 
fact of the matter is that it was midday on a scorching day before 
we were actually outside the harbour, when any sensible fish would 
be as deep in the water and as far away from the surface as 
Normally, I am not bothered at all by my consistent lack of success 
with the hook. Indeed, I feel a little squeamish at the thought of 
a live fish struggling with my hook embedded in its throat. 
Fortunately, my conscience has not had to trouble itself over this 
possibility so far. All in all, I have normally returned quite 
happy from such picnics.
However, the recent one was disturbing for another reason 
altogether: in and immediately out of Keamari Harbour, there were 
hundreds of thousands of little fish floating belly up. They had 
clearly been poisoned by some noxious substance dumped by one of 
the cargo ships at anchor. It has become a common practice for 
ships in our waters to flush their holds and tanks close to shore, 
poisoning the sea, and killing unknown numbers of fish.
The sight we saw a fortnight ago would be unimaginable in most 
harbours. If a captain were to behave in such an outrageous 
fashion, he would probably be arrested, and the owners of the ship 
heavily fined. Here, this sort of thing has become so routine that 
not a single newspaper bothered to report it. Foreign crews, aware 
of Karachi Port Trust's lax attitude in such matters, regularly 
pour chemical waste and sludge from their fuel tanks into our 
But why blame foreigners when our own track record is so poor? As a 
child, I remember going to Keamari, and watching little boys diving 
into the water to retrieve coins thrown in by visitors. Today, they 
couldn't see a thing six inches away because of the pollution. 
Until a decade ago, we would go crabbing regularly, and eat the 
catch that was cooked by the crew on board the rented sailboats. 
Today, there are hardly any crabs left in the harbour, and those 
that have survived probably glow in the dark because of all the 
chemicals in them.
Indeed, our coastline close to Karachi has become one long garbage 
dump. At Sandspit, the waves bring in plastic bags more often than 
they do seaweed, and the beach is often covered with cans, bottles 
and assorted rubbish rather than with sand and seashells. Visitors 
carelessly discard their refuse rather than carrying it back to the 
city, and were it not for the scavenging crows and pi-dogs the 
beach would be one extended stretch of putrefying garbage.
But if we have made our beaches an eyesore, what we have done to 
our cities is no better. Living here as we do, we no longer notice 
how filthy our environment has become. The most fastidious person, 
somebody who would not tolerate a dusty table at home, is blind to 
the fact that his sweeper casually dumps the garbage outside the 
wall on the street. Again, were it not for Karachi's (and most 
urban Pakistan's) invisible army of human and animal scavengers, 

all kinds of diseases would be stalking the land today. And as the 
blood and offal that litter our streets in the aftermath of Eid-ul-
Azha serve to remind us, we are not very concerned about other 
people's sensibilities.
As it is, hepatitis in many old and new forms is endemic in 
Pakistan, and this is a disease that is spread through poor hygiene 
and a contaminated water source. Our civic bodies cannot cope with 
the mountains of garbage that pile up in our cities, and in most of 
our slums and kachchi abadis, sewage and waste matter of every 
description slops around in open sewers. And yet, our ancestors in 
Moenjodaro and Harappa discovered the use of covered drains three 
thousand years ago.
The extensive use of plastic for household utensils of every kind 
means that objects that were earlier made of natural substances 
that would be soon broken down or recycled now lie around for years 
in piles. Nevertheless, almost everything else is recycled, and 
this vast business is tightly controlled by a shadowy mafia. By 
contrast, the Egyptian government has forced them to collect the 
rubbish from households as a sort of tax.
The remotest spot in the country has been blighted by the curse of 
the plastic shopping bag. Go to a lake in Swat, a forest in Nathia 
Gali, or a glacier in Hunza, and you will find these ubiquitous 
objects in different hues and sizes. We must hold some kind of 
world record in littering. And instead of teaching our children to 
preserve our environment, we do not rebuke them for dumping their 
chocolate wrappers out of moving cars.
But if we are careless about how we treat nature, our use of public 
buildings is little short of criminal. Everywhere you go, you will 
find the ever-present splashes of scarlet betel juice, spat out by 
millions of paan-chewing Pakistanis without a thought. People spit 
and hawk everywhere, and those with a cold will casually blow their 
noses into their fingers and smear the result on the nearest wall.
Visitors to these shores are struck (and probably disgusted) by the 
free and easy use of open areas and lanes as public lavatories. If 
you travel by train, you will see hordes of children and adults 
squatting by the tracks, defecating in the morning. Of course, the 
shortage of public toilets adds to the problem.
Given our natural lack of hygiene and concern for others, it is 
doubtful that any law can significantly reduce the industrial, 
traffic and domestic pollution that is rapidly threatening to 
destroy our environment. Were it not for the brisk breeze that 
blows over Karachi for most of the year, the air would be 
unbreathable. Downtown Lahore during the day is hell, and threatens 
to get worse.
Any enlightened government would have launched a major public 
education drive, backed by stiff fines. But in a country where 
leaders seldom bother to stop at a traffic signal, it would be 
foolish to hold our collective breath and wait for the state to set 
an example.


Getting the equation right
Omar Kureishi

BLACK MOODS, my first book, was a collection of columns that I had 
written in 1956. I was young then as was Pakistan, fresh like the 
start of spring "blossom by blossom." But even then it was apparent 
that we were heading towards a paternalistic society with the state 
as the father-figure.
In the preface to the book I had warned against this and argued for 
community self-reliance. If there were no schools, we expected the 
government to build them, if there were no parks, we asked what the 
government was doing about them and so on. We invited the 
government into all walks of our lives and thus disempowered 
I had written too about the dependence on foreign aid in the same 
vein. The aid came with strings and the strings were in the control 
of a puppeteer who had his own agenda which was at variance with 
our national interests. Though the phrase was not fashionable then, 
there was no such thing as a free lunch, is what I was saying.
I bring this up in the context of an increasing involvement of the 
armed forces in the civilian domain. It is the duty and a national 
obligation of the armed forces to come to the aid of civil power. 
Implicit in this obligation is that armed forces will augment the 
efforts of the civil power but not as a matter of routine but only 
in unusual circumstances.
The census is one example and over 2,00,000 troops were deployed. 
Clearly the civil power needed this assistance. Then again for 
flood relief operations and other natural calamities or rail or air 
accidents, it is natural to turn to the armed forces for they are 
equipped to act quickly. But these are emergencies. 
There can be certain other activities that can be justified such as 
road construction in Azad Kashmir and in inaccessible areas where 
there may be a defence dimension.
But the main job of development which includes education and the 
provision of health services belongs to the civil power and this 
cannot be farmed out and should not be farmed out because it 
amounts to an abdication of responsibility. Ours is a de jure 
civilian government, though what it is de facto, is not entirely 
clear and Islamabad is not unmindful that Rawalpindi is only a 
stone's throw away! But so long as we have pretensions that what we 
have is a democratic government duly elected by the people in a 
free and fair election, then the role of the civil power and the 
armed forces should be clearly demarcated otherwise there are 
inherent dangers of overlapping authorities.
This is in the interest of both the civil power and the armed 
forces. To ask the armed forces to assist in what are clearly 
civilian matters is to weaken the authority of the government and 
have its writ diluted. It is also a tacit admission of an inability 
to fulfil its responsibilities. A case be made in cases of a major 
law and order breakdown. Even in the United States the National 
Guard was called out during the Civil Rights movements and when the 

students protested against the Vietnam war and turned their college 
campus into a battlefield. But to get the armed forces involved in 
the run-of-the-mill and routine administration seems to me to be an 
own goal. It casts aspersions on the government's credibility.
>From the standpoint of the armed forces, it is also in their best 
interest that they are not diverted from their main task. It is not 
as if we live in a peaceful neighbourhood. There is an undeclared 
war in Siachen, every day we read of cross-border firings across 
the Line of Control. And there is now installed in New Delhi a BJP 
Government which may be making all the right kind of noises at the 
moment but who knows what its hidden agenda is?
Our armed forces must remain vigilant and in a state of 
preparedness. This may sound like sabre rattling but the armed 
forces can't afford to lower their guard. I think too that an 
involvement in civilian matters can be misunderstood by the people 
and it could be perceived as interference in the day to day affairs 
of the government. It is not healthy.
The relations between the armed forces and the civilian population 
is a harmonious one. There is a bond that remains despite the 11 
years rule of Ziaul Haq, authoritarian, arbitrary and devoid of 
legality in the moral sense of the word. The people have put those 
years behind them and if there were any wounds, these have been 
healed. If the civilians depend on their armed forces to safeguard 
the territorial integrity of the country, the armed forces know 
that they cannot do without solid civilian backing and support. It 
is this interdependence, this equation that must be left 
Government machinery is massive and it has at its disposal millions 
of employees. It is these employees who must be made to work, to 
deliver the goods in the development and social sectors. If someone 
else is doing this job then these persons are redundant. More than 
that it represents a lack of confidence in them or an acceptance of 
their ineptitude. In that case they have no business to be in 
service. A civilian government must not only be civilian in 
appearance but in every respect including decision making in the 
political arena. In other words, it should be self- reliant. The 
armed forces have a role to play in national development but it 
should not be said that we can't see the forest for the trees.

Thieves of Dhaka
Hafizur Rahman

"HONOUR among thieves" is a time-worn adage, although with the 
decline in noble qualities and the general lowering of moral 
standards all over the world, it may be difficult to discern the 
quality of honour among thieves these days. All of us pine for the 
"good old days," and old-timers must be remembering with nostalgia 
the time when thieves were thieves and not crooks.
Thievery used to be a whole-time vocation, and was confined to 
persons who were devoted to it heart and soul. Apart from 

occasional (and unfortunate) stints in jail, they continued on the 
job day and night  mostly at night  and no honest thief ever 
thought of changing his profession. Now of course every Tom, Dick 
and Harry is taking to thieving as a sideline, as if it were a 
hobby like stamp collecting.
Industrialists in Pakistan, who can very well afford to have power 
plants of their own, are stealing electricity from WAPDA. Traders 
steal the sales tax they owe to the state, and billionaire 
politicians with clout do the same with income tax. Government 
officers steal secrets from office files and sell them to whoever 
is interested. Teachers steal question papers of university and 
board exams and make money out of them. Lawyers egg on all these 
amateur part-time thieves in order to promote their own business. 
And maulvis try to get for free whatever they can lay their pious 
hands upon. It's all over the place, to steal the name of Omar 
Kureishi's column.
I am sure it must be the same with Bangladeshis, for didn't they 
steal a whole country from us? Apparently they are not content with 
that, for their whole-time thieves at least want to retain the 
purity of the profession and rid it of politics and national 
considerations. Witness these excerpts from a Dhaka report 
circulated by Agence France Presse:
"About 10,000 thieves have formed an association here and are 
offering courses to newcomers in this ancient occupation....It has 
a training school with 2,000 members, including pick- 
pockets....Hijackers cannot become members, according to spokesman 
Ali Hossain....The association earns about 6,400 dollars monthly 
from 15 areas of Dhaka which has more than eight million 
I wish I could meet Mr Ali Hossain and ask him a few things. I 
should of course want to know, out of sheer curiosity, of course, 
to which branch of thievery he belongs  whether he is a cat 
burglar or pickpocket, or pinches shoes from mosques, or steals 
valuables from people's houses by posing as a meter- reader, or, if 
that is permissible is a reformed hijacker. All these are minor 
points, and would be meant to build up an air of chumminess between 
us. The real questions are the serious ones.
For instance, my main and most important query would be about the 
non-professional breeds of thieves mentioned by me in the third 
paragraph of this piece. Bangladesh too must abound in them, since 
the Bengalis and we were together for 24 years and were brought up 
in the same atmosphere of theft and plunder. My chief question to 
Ali Hossain would be: since you have formed an association of 
thieves, why keep those chaps out of it?
Is it that he doesn't consider them genuine thieves because they 
haven't taken to thievery for a living, to make both ends meet and 
to be able to afford at least one square meal a day, but merely to 
bolster their already reasonable incomes by unfair means? Does he 
consider them lowly pariahs because of this chink in their armour, 
this social weakness, which makes them unfit to sit with self-
respecting veteran thieves? What is it?

I should also like to inform myself about other incidental matters. 
For example, how many courses, and of what duration, does the 
association run? After graduating and becoming full- fledged 
members, what does one pay to keep one's membership alive? If a 
chap is unable to make money at all from thieving, is there a 
system to keep him on the dole out of a welfare fund? If he dies on 
duty, is his family looked after and his son/sons given free 
tuition in the training institute? etc. etc. I have always been 
interested in educational issues.
It's a pity that no one among the thieving gentry of Pakistan has 
ever thought of instituting a regular system of educating its young 
and incipient members. All of them have to learn through in-service 
training or through self-education based on their own spirit of 
enterprise, or take lessons from elders of the family who are 
already in business and don't want their sons and nephews and sons-
in-law to miss out on vital points and thereby cause a loss to a 
good profitable concern.
I was wondering if there was scope for cooperation between the 
hoarders, profiteers and black-marketeers of Pakistan and the 
thieves' association of Dhaka. The former are no doubt ambitious 
people who would be ready to avail themselves of a refresher course 
if the association would agree to run it. But the trouble is that, 
though both are in the same business, there is a fundamental 
difference between the two.
Our people may not find the methods taught to Dhaka thieves 
inspiring enough. They'll say this is what we teach our little boys 
when they are still in school. On the other hand, if the 
association were to send a batch of trainees to Lahore or 
Islamabad, and particularly to Karachi, they will not want to go 
back. The prospect of becoming instant millionaires through 
thievery would be too tempting for indigent Bengali thieves to give 
up, accustomed as they are to earning just a few hundred measly 
takas in a whole day.
Not that anyone is going to take my suggestion seriously about 
cooperation between the top greedy class of Pakistan and the down-
to-earth members of the Dhaka' association. I only put it forward 
because I sincerely want more contacts between our two countries. 
But I suppose you can't have any kind of understanding between the 
Bangladeshis who are honest enough to call themselves thieves and 
the Pakistanis who are dishonest enough to think they are 

Vajpayee's three faces
Afzal Mahmood

INDIAN Prime Minister Atal Behari Vajpayee has several faces. One 
is the hardliner BJP-RSS face which asserts that it is the 
"Pakistan-occupied part of Jammu and Kashmir" which is the bone of 
contention between India and Pakistan and which has to be vacated 
by Pakistan to normalize relations between the two countries.
The second face pertains to the Vajpayee of 1977-79 period when he 
was the minister for external affairs in the Morarji Desai 

government and played a crucial role in improving Indo-Pakistan 
relations. Incidentally, these two years were perhaps the happiest 
period of Indo-Pakistan relations in the past fifty years. Despite 
the fact that the Kashmir issue remained unresolved, the 
relationship during this brief interlude was almost free from 
tension and mistrust.
As his country's new prime minister, Vajpayee is now projecting a 
third face through his emphasis on the 'national agenda.' The BJP 
has at last realized that politics is the art of the possible. In 
1996 its government fell in 13 days because it had drawn a line 
beyond which it was not prepared to go. This time it decided to be 
flexible to an extent that it put its election manifesto on the 
back burner and evolved what it called a "national agenda" in 
consultation with its coalition partners.
A number of hardline policies contained in the BJP election 
manifesto have been dropped from the national agenda. Notably there 
is no mention of the Hindu zealots' demand to build a temple at the 
site of the Babri mosque in Ayodhya. Nor is there any reference to 
the repealing of Article 170 of the Indian Constitution granting 
special status to Jammu and Kashmir. The plan for a common civil 
code on marriage and property laws, a move bitterly opposed by the 
Indian Muslims, is also missing from the national agenda.
The stand on the nuclear option is the only part of the agenda 
which has caused concern to Islamabad. The BJP-led coalition says 
it will take steps "to ensure the security, territorial integrity 
and unity of India. Towards that end, we will re-evaluate the 
nuclear policy and exercise the option to induct nuclear weapons."
The first thing to note is that the option to induct nuclear 
weapons is closely linked with the existence of a threat to the 
security, territorial integrity and unity of India. In the absence 
of such a threat, the question of exercising the option does not 
arise. Secondly, the agenda nowhere says that the Vajpayee 
government is going to test a nuclear weapon. What it says is that 
it will produce nuclear weapons if there is a threat to India's 
security, etc. Prime minister Vajpayee has stated that there was no 
timeframe for nuclear policy. As a nuclear test will immediately 
attract economic sanctions, which India cannot afford in the 
prevailing economic situation, the BJP announcement appears to be 
more rhetorical than real.
The BJP's election manifesto, making a reference to Pakistan, said: 
The BJP affirms unequivocally India's sovereignty over the whole of 
Jammu and Kashmir including the areas under foreign occupation." It 
augurs well for the future of Indo-Pakistan relations that the 
BJP's negative reference to Pakistan in its election manifesto and 
its unreasonable stance on Azad Kashmir has not found any place in 
the national agenda. BJP's stance towards Pakistan has all along 
been jingoistic. But its anti-Pakistan posture was never criticized 
by any other political party in India.
Vajpayee's remarks about Pakistan after his assumption of office as 
prime minister are reminiscent of the days when he was minister for 

external affairs. In his nationwide address on television network 
he said: "Whenever there is the slightest opportunity to improve 
our relations with Islamabad, my government will go the extra mile. 
A happy and prosperous Pakistan would benefit India."
Speaking in the Lok Sabha a few day later, Vajpayee said there 
would be "no key change in foreign policy. Foreign policy has to 
move with the times but the basics cannot change." The "Gujral 
doctrine", the policy of making unilateral concessions to 
neighbours, is likely to be the first casualty of the Vajpayee's 
foreign policy. The nuclear option may not be exercised but India 
may unfreeze its Agni missile programme, put in the cold storage by 
Narasimha Rao's government under US pressure. It may also decide to 
further beef up its conventional armed strength.
India-Pakistan talks may get going but any breakthrough on Kashmir 
is not likely at this stage. On the contrary, there is a real 
danger that the Vajpayee government will try to crush the freedom 
struggle of the Kashmiris through more repressive and brutal 
measures which may further deteriorate the Indo-Pakistan relations.
Despite all the negative factors, there is a feeling both in India 
and Pakistan that the Vajpayee government may achieve in the realm 
of Indo-Pakistan relations what others have failed to do. The 
optimists are encouraged by Vajpayee's pre-election remark that he 
made during a meeting with the High Commissioner of Pakistan. He 
said if ever there would be a breakthrough in India-Pakistan 
relations, it would be under a BJP government. It clearly meant 
that only a party with established nationalist credentials, like 
the BJP, can dare to cut the Gordian knot over Kashmir.

                            S P O R T S 
Nicol beats Jansher to win British Open

BIRMINGHAM (England), April 5: Top seed Peter Nicol of Scotland won 
the British Open men�s squash title when he beat second-seeded 
defending champion Jansher Khan of Pakistan 17-16 15-4 15-5 in the 
final on Sunday.

In the semifinals, the left-handed Scot took only 50 minutes to 
avenge himself on the world champion from Australia Rodney Eyles by 
Nicol only had two phases when his efficient game faltered.
Leading 13-8 in the second game, he allowed Eyles, always dangerous 
at the front, to recover to 13-13, and in the third game he 
unaccountably went 3-10 down.
MARTIN DEFENDS TITLE: Michelle Martin won the British Open for the 
sixth successive time when she overcame her Australian compatriot, 
Sarah Fitz-Gerald, the top-seeded world champion in only half-an-
The brevity of the holder�s 9-4, 9-2, 9-1 victory was stunning. 
>From 4-4 she took the first game in one sequence of points and was 
in complete control for the rest of the match.

Fitz-Gerald, whose length was variable and her presence diffident, 
lost to Martin for the third time in a row in a British Open final, 
and has yet to win the world�s biggest and oldest tournament.
Yet in between this British Open and last Fitz-Gerald has won six 
times out of seven against Martin.
�I think Sarah puts too much pressure on herself to win this,� the 
champion said.
Martin played her best match of the year. She volleyed or took the 
ball early to apply pressure, projected in short when there was 
half an opening, and avoided getting into the slugging matches at 
which the younger Aussie can be so powerful.
�I stuck to my game plan and it helped me control the match. I 
couldn�t be more happy,� the champion added.
At the end she embraced her brother Rodney Martin, her adviser and 
the men�s world champion of seven years ago, and also her coach 
Lionel Robberds, an Australian international at both squash and 
Fitz-Gerald, who was warned for her language in the second game and 
lost the last eight rallies in a row, looked increasingly 
Sorting out her mental approach will be a prerequisite to achieving 
the title which is well within her capacity.Reuters/AFP

Pakistan defeat India in last volleyball match
Sports Correspondent

LAHORE, April 6: Pakistan defeated India by three sets to one in 
the last match of the seven-match volleyball series by 6-1 here at 
the Iqbal Parks Sports Complex indoor gymnasium on Monday.
Pakistan won 15-10, 13-15, 16-14, 15-11. The match lasted for one 
hour and 18 minutes.
Pakistan lost the fourth match of the series at Islamabad. Three 
matches were played at Islamabad and Lahore each while one match 
was held at Pakistan Ordnance Factory, Wah Cantt.
Punjab Sports Board chairman Akhtar Rasool  Chaudhary awarded the 
trophy and a cash prize of Rs 1,00,000 to the Pakistan team captain 
Abdul Rahim who also received a cash prize of Rs 30,000 on 
adjudging the man of the series. Pakistan's Irfan Nawaz was 
declared the man of the match and received a cash prize of Rs 
Playing without the experience players like Ihsanullah Tipu, Zafar 
Iqbal, Mazhar Husain and Mohammad Shahbaz, Pakistan won the first 
set 15-10 in 37 minutes.
The India staged a come back winning the second set at 15-13 to 
neutralise the encounter 1-1. The visitors Trailing 7-10, recovered 
to caught Pakistan at 11-11. The Indian gained a lead of 13-11, but 
with fine blocking and powerful smashing Pakistan managed to level 
it 13-13. However, the Indians soon snatched two points to win the 
set after 36 minutes see-saw proceedings.
A gruelling fight continued in the third set which Pakistan won 
after thrilling fight. Conceding an early 0-10 lead, Pakistan made 
their first points after wasting 17 services. Pakistan with great 
determination caught the Indian team at 13-13, amid thunderous  

applause. After 14-14, Pakistan scored two set- point and 
consolidated its position 2-1. The neck and neck fight lasted for 
35 minutes in the third set.
Pakistan took a flying start of 9-3 in the fourth set which proved 
the final set. The Indians did not lose the hearts and fought back 
gallantly when made it 11-14. The Pakistan team could snatch  the 
match-winning point after losing seven services and completed the 
ABL defeat PIA to retain National one-day trophy
Muhammad Yaqoob
LAHORE, April 4: Allied Bank (ABL) retained its national one-day 
cricket champions title beating PIA in the final of the 17th 
edition of the tournament by an impressive margin of 32 at the 
Qadhafi Stadium under lights on Saturday night.
Defending a total of 248, the ABL skipper Ramiz Raja used his 
bowlers rightly and with fine field placing shot out the PIA side 
for 216 in 48.3 overs.
A third wicket stand of 100 runs off 128 balls, between skipper 
Asif Mujtaba (40, one four, 58 balls) and Zahid Fazal (57, five 
fours, 88 balls) was the only main resistance in the ABL way of 
Ramiz Raja for his 79-ball 68 and fine captaincy, was adjudged the 
man of the match.
Salim Malik of Habib Bank for his accumulating total of 391 runs 
was declared the man of the tournament. Manzoor Akhtar (ABL) with a 
haul of 16 wickets was adjudged the best bowlers of the tournament, 
Javed Qadeer (PIA) for 18 catches and six stumps was announced the 
best wicketkeeper and Aamir Nazir the best fielder of the 
Earlier, the PIA leg-spin trio of Zahid  Ahmad, Asif Mujtaba and 
Nadeem Khan, with three run outs, bowled  out the ABL team at 248 
in 48 overs after the ABL had reached 211 for four in 40.3 overs.
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