------------------------------------------------------------------- DAWN WIRE SERVICE ------------------------------------------------------------------- Week Ending : 23 September 2000 Issue : 06/36 -------------------------------------------------------------------
Contents | National News | Business & Economy | Editorials & Features | Sports
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CONTENTS ===================================================================
NATIONAL NEWS + RAW behind blast, says Musharraf + Petroleum prices up by 10%: Fourth hike in a year + Another attack on Lipa post repulsed: 14 Indian troops killed + High forward rates hit importers: SBP intervenes again + Putin for better ties with Pakistan + Shaheen-II ready for testing, says Mand + Plane case: Court was misled, says Qureshi + Misdeeds of generals being covered up, says Nawaz + Bangladesh denies interfering in Pakistan's affairs + C'wealth warns Pakistan's suspension + CE pledges more funds for Northern Areas + Benazir wants debt relief be tied to good governance + KESC seeks 15% increase in tariff + All Pakistan Newspaper Society to continue boycott --------------------------------- BUSINESS & ECONOMY --------------------------------- + IMF may give $650m medium-term loan: 'Aid referendum' finalized + CBR announces changes in Income Tax rules + Banks await signal: Hike in lending rates + CBR relaxes procedure for filing of returns + Gold up by 4.5% in two months + $250m IMF tranche in November + RAW cotton export from new crop gains momentum + World Bank holds talks on $350m loan + Tax anomalies: Advisory board to be set up today + Talks with IMF finalized: Shaukat + 2 airports, 2 seaports may be privatized + New data collection system on the anvil --------------------------------------- EDITORIALS & FEATURES + Gen Agha Mohammad Yahya Khan - 4 Ardeshir Cowasjee + National Bolshevism & the higher mathematics Ayaz Amir + It's OK to say sorry Irfan Husain ----------- SPORTS + Pakistan and Germany draw 1-1 in crucial tie + Pakistan thrash Great Britain 8-1 in breathtaking display

RAW behind blast, says Musharraf
Syed Irfan Raza

ISLAMABAD, Sept 21: The chief executive, Gen Pervez Musharraf, said
on Thursday that the Indian intelligence agency RAW could be behind
the Tuesday's bomb blast that killed 20 people and injured more
than 100 others in the federal capital.

The chief executive said this while talking to the relatives of the
blast victims during his visit to the Pakistan Institute of Medical
Sciences (PIMS) late Thursday, an official said.

A police official quoted the chief executive as saying that the
evidence collected by the intelligence agencies indicated the
involvement of RAW in the explosion.

The chief executive said the blast was part of a vicious campaign
launched by the enemy against Pakistan. Gen Musharraf said: "I
strongly condemn this campaign."

He said: "The nefarious designs of the enemy cannot be foiled
without the cooperation of the people. We all have to exercise
vigilance against it," he said.

The chief executive also announced compensation of Rs150,000 for
the families of each dead, Rs150,000 for those who lost their both
legs and Rs75,000 for other injured people.

He directed the hospital authorities to provide best treatment to
the injured so that they could recover soon. Earlier police had
claimed that 15 people had died in the wholesale fruit and
vegetable market blast.

Islamabad police on Thursday confirmed Dawn's report that four
bodies had been taken away from the scene by the relatives before
the arrival of the police. One person died at PIMS on Thursday,
raising the death toll to 20.

Health Minister Abdul Malik Kasi, Crops Commander Lt-Gen Jamshed
Gulzar and other senior military and civilian officials were also
present during the CE's visit.

Agencies adds: Gen Musharraf said, the government was making all
efforts to arrest the culprits. "We have clues and evidence on
which we are proceeding further," he added.

Earlier, Gen Musharraf visited the blast victims admitted at the
post-operative ward, intensive care unit (ICU) and surgical ward-4.

Zulfiqar, a fruit-hawker, and one of the four victims who lost both
their legs, told the chief executive that he belonged to Sanghar,
Sindh, and had come to Islamabad some eight years ago.

The chief executive told him that the government would provide him
assistance so that he could restart his business.

Petroleum prices up by 10 per cent: Fourth hike in a year
Ihtashamul Haque

ISLAMABAD, Sept 22: The government on Friday increased petroleum
prices by an average of 10.4 per cent to offset the impact of a
steep rise in the international market.

"The upward revision in the oil prices was inevitable because of
still increasing petroleum prices in the world market," said
Petroleum and Natural Resources Minister Usman Amindduin.

He told a news conference that the prices of Super, Regular as well
as HOBC had been raised by 50 paisas a litre. The prices of
kerosene, he added, had gone up by Rs2.75, High Speed Diesel (HSD)
by Rs1.75, Light Diesel Oil (LDO) by Rs2.50, and JP-4 by Rs1.50 a

In reply to a question, he said only 15pc GST was being levied on
the petroleum products except Motor Spirit, which, he added, was a
heavily taxed item contributing Rs15 billion to the exchequer.

He stated that the overall impact of the increase on the exchequer
was estimated to be around Rs12 billion and added that 85pc of the
petroleum products were being imported to meet the needs.

Asked about plans to lessen dependence on the imported petroleum
products, Mr Aminuddin said a three-year plan was under
consideration to convert power houses from furnace oil to gas.

"The government will soon withdraw 15pc GST on the CNG kits to make
it economical for consumers to convert their vehicles from diesel
to the CNG."

He had no answer when asked whether the government had planned to
offer any relief to the already burdened common man.

Since December 11, prices of diesel have increased from Rs10.66 to
Rs13.50 a litre.

The Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries (Opec) was not
making any commitment whether it would pump more crude in the
market or persist with the current supplies. The consumer countries
were trying to prevail upon Opec to stabilize the prices at $24 a

However, Opec has come up with the plea that recent hike in the
prices of crude oil was due to heavy demands at the start of winter
in European countries.

On Dec 11, the government had increased POL prices by 10pc with a
similar announcement that the decision had been taken to offset the
adverse impact of the steep increase in the world crude prices.

On March 20, the government again increased the prices by an
average of 5.05pc. Yet on June 17, the oil prices were increased by

The minister stated that if the world oil prices fell, the
government would reduce prices.

Another attack on Lipa post repulsed: 14 Indian troops killed

RAWALPINDI, Sept 20: The Pakistan army repulsed another attack on
Tuesday night on the same post on the Line of Control in the Lipa
sector from where the Indian troops had been beaten back on Monday,
according to an ISPR spokesman.

The Indian army suffered heavy losses in their fresh misadventure.
The signal messages intercepted by the Pakistan soldiers confirmed
that at least 14 enemy troops were killed and more than eight
others wounded, he stated.

The attacking force, comprising 70 to 80 troops, closed in on the
post from two sides under the cover of intense artillery and mortar
fire. "Our troops subjected the enemy troops to effective
artillery, mortar and small arms fire, and forced them to withdraw
in haste."

The Pakistan commander and his men valiantly defended their post,
said the spokesman, adding that the Indian attack was "poorly
planned and clumsily executed".

It was assessed that, in all probability, the local Indian
commander had ordered this attack in desperation as he was under
criticism and pressure from his seniors for failure in the attack
launched on Monday.

Such rash actions were also indicative of growing frustration of
Indian commanders in occupied Kashmir, who found themselves
incapable of dealing with the ongoing freedom movement, the
spokesman ended.-APP/AFP

High forward rates hit importers: SBP intervenes again
Mohiuddin Aazim

KARACHI, Sept 21: The State Bank on Thursday made another
intervention in the inter-bank foreign exchange market to contain
the surge of the dollar. Bankers said the State Bank sold $5-$10
million on ready counters that pushed the dollar down to Rs 57.70
after enjoying an intra-day high of Rs 58.40. But after normal
trading hours the dollar shot up again to Rs 57.90 as some banks
started buying to square their short positions.

The SBP had intervened in the market also on Wednesday. It had sold
$15-$20 million in three month forward to contain the rise of the

Bankers said whereas the Wednesday intervention had stabilized both
ready and forward rates this was not the case on Thursday. They
said forward premiums in the inter-bank market shot up to such high
levels as 225 paisa over spot price for six months; 115 paisa for
three months and 40 paisa for one month. On Wednesday the premiums
had fallen to 175 paisa for six months; 80 paisa for three months
and 25 paisa for one month.

In practical terms high forward premiums in inter-bank market means
expensive forward buying for the importers. For example if the
inter-bank premium on six month is 225 paisa per dollar the banks
would quote six month forward price to the importers at 250 paisa
or so. In simpler words an importer will book a dollar for delivery
after six month at 60.50-if the premium is 250 paisa.

Putin for better ties with Pakistan
Ahmad Hasan Alvi

ISLAMABAD, Sept 21: Russian President Vladimir Putin said on
Thursday his country assigned "special importance" to its relations
with Pakistan, and stressed the need for establishing "mutually
beneficial bilateral cooperation".

Mr Putin was speaking at a ceremony where Pakistan ambassador to
the Russian Federation, Syed Iftikhar Murshed, had presented his
credentials to him, said a press release of the Pakistan Embassy in
Moscow issued here on Thursday.

President Putin referred to his recent meeting with the chief
executive, Gen Pervez Musharraf, in New York. He described the
meeting as "very positive".

The ambassador conveyed warm greetings and good wishes from the
president and the chief executive to the Russian president which
were warmly reciprocated.

Masood Haider adds from New York: Pakistan and Russia reaffirmed
their support to the efforts being made by the UN secretary-
general's special representative as well as under the "Six-plus-
Two" mechanism to resolve the Afghanistan conflict.

At a meeting on the sidelines of the General Assembly session on
Tuesday, Foreign Minister Abdul Sattar and Russian Foreign Minister
Igor S. Ivanov held in-depth discussions on the Afghan situation.

They also stressed the need for strengthening bilateral

They expressed satisfaction over the recent ministerial meeting of
the Six-plus-Two group, and concurred that there could be no
military solution to the Afghan conflict.

Shaheen-II ready for testing, says Mand

ISLAMABAD, Sept 16: Prominent scientist Dr Samar Mubarik Mand has
disclosed that Pakistan has developed indigenous missile technology
in the form of Shaheen-II.

Speaking at the graduation ceremony of Management Course for Wapda
Officers as chief guest at Wapda Staff College here on Saturday he
said that Shaheen-II is a multi-stage missile and has the range of
2500 km and is ready for testing.

Besides atomic missile technology, Pakistan has developed a lot in
metal and communication technology, he added.

He said Pakistan is in forefront of technological development. He
said, "we responded to explode the nuclear deterrent within five
days after getting clearance from the government in May, 1998. It
was not a miracle but it had the preparation of 25 years behind

"We are thankful to Mr Vajpayee who provided us an opportunity to
declare officially our nuclear and missile capability," Dr Samar
Mubarik said.

Plane Plane case: Court was misled, says Qureshi

KARACHI, Sept 21: The Advocate-General of Sindh, Raja Qureshi, said
on Thursday the Sindh High Court full bench, hearing appeals in the
plane hijacking case, had been given incorrect information that
Barrister Ijaz Batalvi's petition in the Supreme Court was fixed
for Sept 21.

On Wednesday, Khwaja Haris had sought adjournment from the full
bench, saying that Mr Batalvi would be in Islamabad on Thursday on
account of the hearing of the petition filed in the apex court on
behalf of Nawaz Sharif.

Mr Qureshi said he had not received any notice from the apex court
about the

Misdeeds of generals being covered up, says Nawaz

LAHORE, Sept 19: Deposed prime minister Nawaz Sharif said on
Tuesday that the present set-up was trying to cover up
irregularities of generals while defaming politicians.

In a hard-hitting statement issued by his wife on his behalf, Mr
Sharif said if there were corruption charges against him and other
political leaders, why the government had failed to make them
public during the last 11 months. Also, he said, the government
should let the nation know why references had not been prepared
against political leaders if the government had proof against them.

Mr Sharif said some generals had received commissions from defence
purchases and there were others who had imported duty-free cars and
then sold them for big profits. Such cars, he pointed out, could
not be sold unless duty was paid on them.

Maintaining that politicians faced accountability through electoral
process, the former prime minister said it was a farce that the
military had its own system of accountability. He said some
newspapers had published reports of kickbacks in defence deals and
the people had not been informed about the elements involved.

Mr Sharif said that there were generals whose salary was only
Rs20,000 a month but they had assets of hundreds of millions of
rupees. Also, he said, these officials had sent their children
abroad for education.

He asked the NAB if it would try to investigate such cases. Also,
he said, he would like to know if there was any court which took up
such cases or remanded the accused in police custody.

The deposed prime minister said the politicians had always tried to
cover up the irregularities of militarymen to save the image of the
armed forces.

He pointed out that a former naval chief involved in corruption was
saved by a former army chief. He said the then army chief had sent
him a message that the matter should be hushed up.

Another former army chief, he alleged, had got a plot from the CDA
for Rs3.4 million but sold the same for over Rs12 million. Another
army chief purchased tanks to earn commission, knowing well that
they were not fit for Pakistan's terrain. Some patriotic generals
had opposed the deal, Mr Sharif said, adding that as prime minister
he had personally seen notes of dissent.

He was also critical of Gen Pervez Musharraf's statement that the
1971 tragedy should be forgotten as it now history. He said he was
at a loss to understand why the nation should be asked to forget
it. He said perhaps "forget-it" was being advocated because some
generals had betrayed their institutions and profession.

He believed that the military rulers would not quit without public

Bangladesh denies interfering in Pakistan's affairs

DHAKA, Sept 17: Bangladesh denied on Sunday that it was interfering
in the internal affairs of Pakistan by seeking international
actions against countries where the army grabbed power overthrowing
democratically elected governments.

The denial came in a statement by foreign secretary C.M. Shafi Sami
in which allegations of interference made by Gen Pervez Musharraf
were refuted.

Pakistan's chief executive returning from the UN millennium summit
said in Karachi on Friday that some of the statements by
Bangladeshi prime minister Sheikh Hasina in New York were a "direct
interference" in the "internal affairs" of Pakistan.

Sami said the Bangladesh leader's Sept 8 speech at the UN was a
generalised policy statement on democratic governance and was not
directed against any particular country or individual.

Hasina said at the UN that the international community should not
recognize countries where elected governments were toppled through
undemocratic means.

Hasina also said on returning to Dhaka that she could not
understand why Gen Musharraf had taken her comments on democracy

Hasina's UN speech was lauded by the Indian media.

Pakistani officials said Hasina's remarks would not affect
Islamabad's relations with its breakaway former province, but it
would have a negative impact on Bangladesh's role as a peace maker
in South Asia.-dpa

C'wealth warns Pakistan´┐Żs suspension
Masood Haider

NEW YORK, Sept 16: The Commonwealth nations on Friday reiterated
that if a firmer timeframe for democracy was not given soon
Pakistan could face suspension from the 54-nation group.

They also warned Fiji of similar sanctions.

At a press conference following the meeting of the 11-member
Commonwealth ministerial action group Botswana foreign minister
Mompati Merafhe said that the ministers agreed there were no
grounds to soften its stance or ease the suspension of both
countries from the organization's council.

'We made abundantly clear to the Pakistani foreign minister (Abdul
Sattar) that unless a firmer timetable is achieved (for restoring
democracy) we will have no alternative but to recommend to the next
Commonwealth heads-of-government meeting to take stronger

Pakistan's foreign minister Sattar while asking the CMAG to show
greater understanding of Pakistan's predicament said: "The current
Commonwealth policy is tantamount to sympathy for the corrupt
regimes and penalization of those who seek to devise ways and means
to curb corruption and promote good governance. Merafhe said that
the ministers agreed only to offer technical assistance requested
by Pakistan in preparing electoral rolls.

On Fiji, the CMAG ministers heard pleas both from ousted democratic
prime minister Mahendra Chaudhry, an ethnic Indian taken hostage by
ethnic Fijian gunmen and overthrown earlier this year, and from the
head of the South Pacific country's interim government, Laisenia

CE pledges more funds for Northern Areas

GILGIT, Sept 19: Chief Executive General Pervez Musharraf has
assured that more funds will be provided for the development of
Northern Areas.

"Let money start pouring in national kitty and then more funds will
be given for the development of less developed areas," he said
while addressing the Northern Areas Legislative Council here on

The chief executive underlined the need for judicious use of funds.

The chief executive expressed his confidence that the members of
Northern Areas Legislative Council would actively take part in the
developmental activities and fulfil their duties.

Gen Musharraf said the government was taking keen interest in the
promotion of tourism in the area. In this regard, he said a
comprehensive plan was being chalked out.

He said the government had also lifted ban on recruitment in
Northern Areas. He said a sum of Rs20 million had been allocated
for micro-credit schemes.-NNI/APP

Benazir wants debt relief be tied to good governance

MANILA, Sept 18: Former prime minister Benazir Bhutto has said that
debt relief to the developing countries be tied to good governance,
and the savings thus made be channelled into special anti-poverty

She was speaking at an international conference of the Asian
political parties on Monday.

Asia's middle classes, she said, were groaning under the world of
deregulation and free currency flows that moved with ruthless speed
bringing both fortune and failure in its wake. "With our response,
we can meet the threat of a new super class of marginalized
underprivileged, unable to compete with modern ideas, technology
and markets," she said.

Ms Bhutto said that bribes offered to parliamentarians to switch
sides were also a problem. "I faced it when my opponents moved a
no-confidence motion funded by those opposed to a woman in

She suggested open balloting that made cheating difficult and said
that those who switched sides should be forced to resign. "The
president my party elected switched sides plunging Pakistan into a
downward spiral on the rocky road of nuclear explosions, economic
implosion and, finally, martial law".

Fanatics also challenged stability, she said, adding: "they do it
under the cloak of religion". She stressed the need for promoting
inter-faith dialogue to avert a clash of civilizations.

The former prime minister was of the view said that the Asian
countries could meet these challenges by identifying common
institutions, laws and procedures enabling them to move forward in
an Asian rhythm, benefiting from the new world order.

KESC seeks 15% increase in tariff
Ikram Hoti

ISLAMABAD, Sept 22: The Karachi Electric Supply Company (KESC)
filed on Friday a petition with the National Electric Power
Regulatory Authority (NEPRA), seeking an increase of 15 per cent in
the power charges from November.

Sources told Dawn that the KESC had requested for an overall 32.7
per cent increase in power rates from Nov 1 towards the end of year
2002. "The company cannot sustain its operations with a Rs68
billion deficit if an immediate authorization for increasing the
power charges is not allowed", the KESC has pleaded.

The increase in power rates has been requested in such a manner
that an eight per cent increase is to be effected from July 1,
2001. The rest of the increase has been sought from December 2001
toward the end of year 2002.

The KESC in its petition has maintained that an increase of 63.3
per cent has been effected in the prices of furnace oil, the main
fuel for power generation, from July 1999 todate.

The prices of gas, another source of fuel generation, have been
increased by 23.9 per cent in the same period, it contended.

At the present rate of power supply, the KESC is incurring heavy
and unsustainable losses, which would render the company
inoperative, it says. The private power producers, selling
electricity to KESC for onward supply, have increased their rates,
the company says.

While the IPPs have been allowed an increase on supplies to KESC,
the latter has not been authorized to do the same. On the other
hand, it pleads, the downswing of rupee against dollar, has further
burdened the furnace oil prices, which is an additional cost the
KESC is paying for power generation.

To shed this unbearable load threatening the immediate future of
the KESC, the government has been requested to allow a fuel
adjustment under a new formula, pay subsidy to KESC, and allow the
company to adjust its rates in a manner that the consumers are made
to pay the additional cost of generation and supply, it has prayed.

A source said that Nepra was likely to allow KESC to make an
interim increase in power rates.

Wapda was allowed an increase of 13 paisa per unit, to raise its
revenues by Rs3 billion per annum.

fpcci chief: Meanwhile, president Federation of Pakistan Chambers
of Commerce and Industry Fazlur Rehman Dittu has urged the
government not to raise power charges because it will make the
local industry uncompetitive, adds APP.

In a statement, issued here Friday, Mr Dittu said that the ad hoc
clearance by NEPRA on tariff hike of 8.33 per cent would be much
higher when basic tariff multiplies with several charges under
different descriptions uncompetitive against the prices of other
countries which develop their manufacturing for exports with
competitively less input costs.

The FPCCI President said that in addition to tariff hike present on
drive operation by KESC in the name of combing excludes
consideration of standards of metering and measures where in actual
consumed electricity and connected load is to read with MDI.

The MDI can be less than contracted load or more than contracted
load but consumer has to pay which ever is higher, the present
drive to ask consumers to pay for load which is not connected or
not installed and not in use or acts as spare is not engineering
approach by KESC.

KESC should concentrate on detecting thefts and improve its
efficiency beside making more frequent checking of meters so the
cost compliance based leakage's are stopped.

The FPCCI President appealed to the management of KESC to stop a
situation from closing of industries which is also running under

All Pakistan Newspaper Society to continue boycott

KARACHI, Sept 22: The All Pakistan Newspaper Society has decided to
continue its boycott of the proceedings of the Wage Board, said
Arshad Zuberi, secretary-general of the organization, here on

A meeting of a high-powered committee of the APNS, which met under
the chairmanship of Mir Shakilur Rahman, decided to continue its
boycott "if the assurances on procedural safeguards sought by the
APNS are not provided before the meeting of the Wage Board. The
committee pointed out that as far back as April 24, 2000, the APNS
while nominating its members on the Wage Board had outlined certain
terms and conditions for the conduct of the meetings and
proceedings of the Wage Board and had made it clear that in the
absence of categoric assurances of the terms and conditions
mentioned therein the persons nominated by the APNS will not
participate in the proceedings of the Board and the nominations
will be deemed to have been withdrawn," said the press release.

The meeting recalled that the concerned ministry was reminded of
the above conditions and was requested an early confirmation on the
procedural safeguards required by the APNS.

The press release said: "Both the letters remained unattended and
the APNS, through a communication on Aug 2, asked the ministry of
labour to place the terms and conditions outlined by the APNS
before the chairman of the Wage Board for consideration and
confirmation. The committee regretted to note that instead of
responding to the APNS request, the learned chairman proceeded to
hold the 1st meeting of the Wage Board without the representatives
of the APNS.

"The APNS committee termed the approach of the chairman biased,
partisan and unethical, and decided that the APNS as a last resort
would once again write to the chairman, requesting him to assure
within 10 days that the APNS conditions would be positively taken
up by the Board. It was further decided that on the response by the
chairman, the committee would review the situation and decide
whether its members should participate in the proceedings of the
Wage Board."

The committee also flayed the role of information ministry "which
failed to pursue the case of the APNS despite several requests and
instead tried to pitch the workers against the employers so as to
maintain its hegemonic role over the consequently weakened press.
The committee resolved to foil such efforts in the greater interest
of a free press," the statement said.

IMF may give $650m medium-term loan: 'Aid referendum' finalized
Ihtashamul Haque

ISLAMABAD, Sept 20: Senior officials of the finance ministry and
the visiting IMF review mission have reached a broad understanding
on various issues to provide $650 million medium-term loan to
Pakistan under standby arrangement.

Official sources told Dawn that the mission, led by Sena Ekin, held
a detailed meeting with the finance minister, Shaukat Aziz, as well
as senior officials of the State Bank and reached a tentative
agreement, details of which were expected to be made public on

A new terminology, called "aid referendum", has been finalized
between the two sides.

Pakistan was told that it would have around $1.5 billion balance of
payment support from the IMF, World Bank and the Asian Development

Sources said that the understanding was reached after Pakistan
implemented one of the major conditionalities of the IMF: to have a
market-based exchange rate (also called free flotation of rupee)
from Sept 18.

Since then the rupee has depreciated by 9.8 per cent against
dollar. "No more official devaluation of rupee after having agreed
a market-based exchange rate with the IMF", a source said.

Sources said that the Fund mission had received a go-ahead signal
from its executive board and the members of G-8 countries to save
Pakistan from default by offering $650 million SBA by September
next year.

"We are on track as all the political and diplomatic issues have
been sorted out to provide the much-needed balance of payment
support to Pakistan", a senior official of the finance ministry
said after talks with the Fund mission.

He said that there was no hitch left now to have the IMF funding
resumed very shortly. "The final touches are being given to an
agreement which will be later converted into poverty reduction
growth facility (PRGF) at a marginal rate of interest.

Sources said that the IMF had agreed with the government that it
was not possible to achieve the 4.6 per cent GDP-budget deficit
target set for the current financial year. It was then agreed that
the government would make sure to achieve five per cent budget
deficit by increasing its revenues and cutting non-development

Mr Aziz, sources said, assured the mission that Rs430 billion
revenue collection target would be achieved by netting more tax-
payers through the ongoing survey campaign. The second phase of the
survey was being started in 13 other cities from Sept 25.

Sources said the government had assured the Fund mission to
considerably increase foreign exchange reserves by enhancing
exports and remittances. In this regard the mission was told that
Pakistani banks abroad had been directed to timely send remittances
to the relatives of overseas Pakistanis.

CBR announces changes in Income Tax rules
Ikram Hoti

ISLAMABAD, Sept 19: Central Board of Revenue, on Tuesday, notified
new rules for the income taxpayers, along with the withdrawal of
the simplified facility available for the last four years.

A Revenue Division notification No 648 (I)/2000, dated September
19, amends income tax payment rules for the companies, individual,
registered and unregistered firms, salaried class, associations of
persons (AOP) and new taxpayers.

All taxpayers will now have to submit, through their returns this
year, details of income and spending. They will not withhold any
sources/means of income. Spending claimed for deduction in the
total amount of taxable income will have to be proved through bills
and receipts. Concealment on these counts is punishable.

For this purpose, Rule 190 of the Income Tax Rules 1982, stands
amended. Accordingly, all sub-sections of the IT Rules relevant to
companies, individual, registered and unregistered firms, salaried
class, associations of persons (AOP) and new taxpayers, stand

The notification says: The following further amendments shall be
made in the IT Rules, 1982, the same having been previously
published as required by sub-section (4) of the said sections,

Companies Taxpayers: For Rule 190, the following shall be
substituted: "190. Return of total income required to be furnished
under section 55 shall, in the case of companies, be verified in
the manner and accompanied by the documents, statements and
certificates specified in the return form, and specified in the
Finance Ordinance 2000, or rules made or issued thereunder.

A verification certificate on income/source would have to be
attached with the return. Any person making false statement or
furnishing inaccurate particulars is liable to penalty/prosecution
or both under the T Ordinance, 1979. The verification should be
signed by the principal officer or chief executive of the company.

The return of the total income to be furnished under Section 55
shall, in the case of registered firms, be verified, accompanied by
the documents, statements and certificates.

Registered firms: If any of the documents prescribed under the
Income Tax Rules as part of return are not endorsed as required,
the return is liable to be considered as invalid return under the
law. Any person making false statement or furnishing inaccurate
particulars is liable to penalty/prosecution or both under the IT
Ordinance, 1979. The verification should be signed by the partner.

The return of total income required to be furnished under Section
55 shall, in the case of individuals, association of persons,
unregistered firms or Hindu Undivided Families (HUF), be verified,
accompanied by the documents, statements and certificates.

Individual taxpayers, AOP, URF and HUF: If any of the documents
prescribed under the Income Tax Rules as part of return or Wealth
Tax return (to be filed by individuals whose total income exceeds
Rs200,000) are not enclosed, the return is liable to be considered
as invalid return under the law.

Banks await signal: Hike in lending rates
Mohiuddin Aazim

KARACHI, Sept 22: Major banks are waiting for further signals from
the inter-bank market before raising their lending rates in line
with the increase in the State Bank repo rate and treasury bills

"If there is a consistency in upward movement of SBP repo rate and
treasury bill rate we may have to revise our own lending rate
structure," National Bank President S. Ali Raza said on Thursday.

He agreed with Dawn that by raising its repo rate from 11 to 12 per
cent and hiking the yield on six-month T-bills by 1.5 per cent SBP
has already shown a consistency. But he felt that state-run NBP
should rather wait for further reinforcing of the trend before
moving its own lending rates up.

"We will continue to watch the trend in money market to see if
there is really a need to restructure our lending rates because the
market conditions may be such that banks find it difficult to hike
lending rates." Obviously Raza was referring to a depressed demand
for private sector credit in fiscal July/June 1999-00. His
statement makes more sense when one recalls that lead banks had
decided not to make further cuts in their lending rates after the
government slashed returns on national saving schemes by 1.5 per
cent in the budget 2000-01. Banks had already cut their lending
rates by one and a half to two per cent in January this year-and
capped maximum mark-ups at 16.0-16.8 per cent-in response to a two
per cent cut in the returns on NSS.

Banks did not make further cuts in their lending rates because
despite a 1.5 per cent slashing the returns on NSS were still
higher than prime lending rates of lead banks. And the State Bank
had not cut its repo rates that serve as a direct signal for the
banks to revise lending rates.

SBP Governor Dr Ishrat Husain had even made a public statement that
the repo rate would not change.

Raza said even if NBP made no across-the-board changes in its
lending rates structure the recent increase in SBP repo rate and T
bills rate would lead to repricing of the advances booked on
floating rates. That is in cases where the bank had lent money at a
reference rate plus prevailing repo or T bills rate, overall
lending rate would automatically rise.

NBP started making advances on floating rates using SBP repo rate
and T bills rates as benchmarks in January 1999. Other lead banks
were already doing that. And those whose bulk of financing was
still on fixed rates followed suit.

The policy stand taken by Ali Raza of NBP is representative of the
line being followed by other four lead banks namely (i) HBL (ii)
UBL (iii) MCB and (iv) ABL. Executives of these banks say despite
the fact that SBP has raised its repo rate and T bills rate and the
trend is likely to continue, commercial banks need to wait a while
before making any moves.

"We may have to revise our lending rates if interest rates in the
money market show a constant rise," said a senior official of UBL.
Executives at three other lead banks said similar things.

The cautious approached adopted by lead banks makes sense as the
hiking of SBP repo rate and T bills rate is yet to reflect on
inter-bank money market where interest rates remain anchored at low

Besides, bankers know that the recent hiking of SBP repo rate and T
bills rate is chiefly meant for supporting the rupee that fell five
per cent against the dollar within a week. They need not to hurry
in increasing their own lending rates because the SBP may not
necessarily continue jacking up its repo rate and T bills rate
after the rupee becomes stable.

CBR relaxes procedure for filing of returns

ISLAMABAD, Sept 22: All taxpayers intending to file their income
and wealth tax returns this year have been officially notified that
they can use plain paper for filing their declarations with the
Income Tax department.

A circular No 23 of 2000, dated Sept 22, has been issued by the
Central Board of Revenue which reads as follows: In order to
facilitate taxpayers in filing the tax returns for the assessment
year 2000-2001, it is being notified that return forms can also be
filed on white paper.

Copies of forms downloaded from CBR's website will be acceptable if
each page bears the National Tax Number (NTN) and signatures of the

Return can also be filed on photocopied forms if each page bears
NTN and signatures of the taxpayer. The salary certificate, in case
of salaried class of taxpayers, can be generated through computer.
However, if it is filled in by hand, a ball point pen should be

Gallup polls: A survey recently carried out by Gallup on the
subject of healthcare in Pakistan shows that 30 per cent of
children under the age of five suffer from flu, cold and other
respiratory ailments in August.

The survey shows that among adults over the age of 18, the figure
is approximately 20 per cent.

It says a representative sample of more than 2,500 households were
asked if they had any children under the age of five and whether
one or more of them had suffered from flu, bad throat or any
respiratory problem during the past two weeks. Half of the sample
was interviewed in July and the other identical half was
interviewed in August.

According to researchers on healthcare at Gallup, it is interesting
to note that the prevalence of flu, bad throat and respiratory
illness was nearly 30 per cent higher in August.

Gallup healthcare researchers have pointed out the need for more
in-depth analysis of causes as a result of which at least one in
three children and five adults suffer from flu, bad throat and
respiratory problems during the month of August.

The survey was conducted by Gallup Pakistan, the Pakistani
affiliate of Gallup International, among 2,500 statistically
selected households in both rural and urban areas of all the four
provinces of Pakistan.

Gold up by 4.5% in two months

KARACHI, Sept 22: Price of gold has risen by 4.5 per cent in
Karachi and 3.7 per cent in Lahore since July 20, when the rupee
was floated free in true sense of the word.

On July 20, gold 24 carat was sold for Rs4980 per 10gm in Karachi
and for Rs5040 in Lahore: On September 21, its prices rose to
Rs5204 in Karachi and Rs5230 in Lahore.

Gold merchants say the reason for gold price moving up is the
depreciation of the rupee in inter-bank market.

 The rupee has so far depreciated by 9.8 per cent against the
dollar since July 20, when the State Bank removed an unofficial cap
on exchange rates.

The removal of cap on July 20 has pushed the dollar up to Rs58 in
inter-bank market and to Rs60 in kerb market.

 Up to July 20, banks were selling the dollar for Rs52.30: in kerb
market the greenback was trading at Rs54.85.

Pakistan imports a small percentage of its estimated demand of 120
tons of gold every year: the bulk of the yellow metal comes in
through smuggling - in the shape of undeclared personal baggage and
misdeclared Afghan transit cargo.

$250m IMF tranche in November
Bureau Report

ISLAMABAD, Sept 22: The International Monetary Fund (IMF) has
indicated to offer about $250 million as a first tranche of the
$650 million in November to help ease Pakistan's severe balance of
payment pressure.

This was tentatively agreed between the two sides following the
conclusion of a broad agreement reached on Thursday after two weeks
of negotiations.

The proposed letter of intent (LoI) or an 'Ad Referendum' that has
been agreed was to be made public on Friday as was said by Finance
Minister Shaukat Aziz on Thursday before leaving for Prague.

However, there was no formal announcement about the LoI, which
would be signed after consultation of the two sides with their
higher authorities. Once this was done the IMF executive board will
approve the LoI in the third week of October (most likely on 25 or
26) after its scheduled meeting.

Sources in the multilateral agencies confirmed the conclusion of an
agreement between the two sides terming the development as
"positive." Ad Referendum, they said, meant that the agreement was
concluded subject to the approval of the IMF and the Pakistan
government to resume the country's assistance under medium-term
standby arrangement (SBA).

Sources said under the agreement the current year's financing gap
of $3.5 billion will be filled by the IMF, Paris Club, World Bank
and the Asian Development Bank (ADB). The IMF alone was likely to
provide $600 to $650 million.

The proposed financing package for next nine months was being
finalised in such a manner that the IMF, the World Bank and the ADB
would provide $1.5 billion and the $2 billion loans will be
rescheduled by the Paris Club.

But, Islamabad was told to successfully implement a multi-year
programme to boost its weak foreign exchange position by increasing
its exports, enhancing revenues and tightening monetary controls by
the central bank.

"We have agreed that artificial fixation of exchange rate will not
help the government and that is why the issue of appreciating or
depreciating the rupee has been left for the market forces", a
source in the multilateral agency said.

He said free exchange rate would stabilize the rupee. He did not
believe that this was a severe conditionality. He said: "Look at
India, Bangladesh, Philippines, Sri Lanka and Thailand who all had
devalued their currencies during the last three to four weeks
time." He said it was a strong dollar due to which even Euro,
launched just last year, has been devalued by 28 per cent.

"This is not an isolated phenomena. It is part of the global
environment and Pakistan can not be an exception in this behalf."

RAW cotton export from new crop gains momentum
Parvaiz Ishfaq Rana

KARACHI, Sept 21: Raw cotton export from new crop is gradually
gaining momentum and out of 100,000 bales contracted for export
around 18,090 bales have been physically shipped, official sources
disclosed here on Thursday.

Under the new cotton policy, the government has allowed export of
raw cotton from the start of cotton season i.e. Sept 1. Similarly,
duty-free imports have been permitted by the government to maintain
a balance between the stakeholders of the cotton economy.

According to official figures, so far, TCP has exported around
16,930 bales out of new crop, while private exporters made physical
shipment of around 1,160 bales.

Though the size of the crop at this early stage could not be
ascertained, however under new policy, the government in order to
provide protection has asked the TCP to work out a stabilizing
force and make sure that phutti prices do not fall below Rs725 per

As for previous crop (1999-2000), the TCP has so far has made
physical shipment of around 235,858 bales, out its total procured
stocks of around 525,000 bales. The private sector had exported
around 337,830 bales from last crop.

The official cotton assessment committee, in its first meeting
recently held in Karachi, is reported to have lowered the estimated
crop size from 10 million bales to 9.7 million bales on getting
strong indications that there are evidences of pests attack in some
part of cotton growing areas in Punjab.

Though the acreage under cotton has risen by 17 per cent but in
Sindh it declined by around 5 per cent owing to water shortage.

World Bank holds talks on $350m loan

ISLAMABAD, Sept 21: A high-ranking World Bank mission comprising
senior officials from policy, power and infrastructure and banking
and finance sectors held negotiations with the Finance Minister
Shaukat Aziz on a $350 millionstructural adjustment loan (SAL) of
on Thursday.

The World Bank side was represented by Mr John Panzer, senior
economist, Joe Pernia, division chief banking & finance, Jaarda
Leeuwen, principal analyst and John Wall, country director for

The mission reviewed the reform programme in the areas of energy
sector, banking and civil services and governance and expressed
satisfaction over the pace of implementation.

A number of milestones were agreed which would pave the way for the
Bank to expeditiously process the loan.

The finance minister appreciated the role the bank in the economic
development of the country.-APP

Tax anomalies: Advisory board to be set up today
Ikram Hoti

ISLAMABAD, Sept 21: The government will announce on Friday the
setting up of 22-member Tax Advisory Board to help change taxation
laws and facilitate taxpayers.

The names of traders and industrialists have been finalized by the
government in consultation with their representative bodies,
official sources told Dawn here on Thursday.

*From 11 major cities, one each member of the trade and
manufacturing sectors has been selected as member of the board,
which is meant to do away with the technical problems and anomalies
in taxes.

The advisory board would be headed by a nominee of the finance
ministry, and the official sources said that Shahid Hussain,
chairman of CBR restructuring committee, would most probably be the

A Tax Advisory Board office would be set up at the CBR while the
TAB would also have its sub-offices at major cities of the country.

 The board would receive all complaints of the trade and
manufacturing bodies, individual businessmen and common citizens
regarding tax collection methods, tax rates, the misuse of
discretion by the tax officials, and devise ways and means to
settle these complaints.

Talks with IMF finalized: Shaukat
Ihteshamul Haq

ISLAMABAD, Sept 21: Finance Minister Shaukat Aziz said on Thursday
that talks with the International Monetary Fund had ended and that
a letter of intent (LoI) would be finalized and announced by the
IMF on Friday.

"A three-year framework has been worked out on which the IMF review
mission has agreed," the minister said, adding that the details of
the programme would be made known when the IMF board would give its
approval. "I can say that we have had extremely fruitful and
constructive talks".

Talking to reporters after attending a function held for awarding
ISO 9001 certificate to Vety Care Pharmaceutical company by the
French Association of Quality Assurance, Mr Aziz said agreement on
major issues had been reached with the IMF.

Asked whether the IMF would offer 600 to 650 million dollar loan
under the standby arrangement (SBA), he said he would not talk
about the size of the programme as it was to be approved by the
IMF's executive board.

Mr Aziz pointed out that simultaneous talks were held with the IMF,
World Bank and the Asian Development Bank.

The minister said he was going to Prague tonight to attend the
annual meeting of the World Bank and the IMF."We will also have
discussion there with the World Bank president, IMF managing
director and the president of the Asian Development Bank".

He said that, during his visit to Prague, he would also meet his
counterparts from the G-7 countries and the chairman of the Paris
Club. He hoped that negotiations would further progress."I am quite
confident that the country will receive sufficient funds, which
will help in economic growth.

"The ADB will offer $800 million for some projects while the amount
to be extended by the World Bank is being worked out," he added.

Answering a question, the minister said that direct and indirect
talks with the Hub Power Company (Hubco) were still going on, and
"we are close to a settlement but things are still to be

He was asked why an impression was created that an agreement had
been reached with the Hubco after talks between Chief Executive Gen
Pervez Musharraf and Hubco chairman Sheikh Mohammad Ali Reza in New
York on Sept 10 and that the CE would announce the agreement on his
return to Pakistan.

"We have to resolve this issue to the satisfaction of both Wapda
and the Hubco", he replied, adding that the government wanted that
Wapda should not suffer unnecessarily due to its agreement with the

2 airports, 2 seaports may be privatized
Bureau Report

ISLAMABAD, Sept 20: The government is considering a proposal for
granting handling concessions of two airports and two ports to the
private sector, says privatization commission chief.

"Concessioning of Lahore International Airport and Quaid-i-Azam
International Airport as well as two ports in Karachi is being
studied," the PC chairman, Altaf Saleem, told envoys of European
Union at a briefing held at the French embassy here on Wednesday.

He said a decision had already been taken to privatize Pakistan
International Airlines Corporation.

He asked the EU countries to avail the opportunity of investment in
the country.

The government, he added, had embarked on a two-phased
privatization programme. Work on short and medium-term programmes
had simultaneously been initiated after the completion of
structural reforms, providing a real base for the transparent
privatization process, he said.

He maintained that the PTCL was now ready for marketing and soft
marketing by the financial advisor, Goldman Sachs, was in progress.
Serious buyers around the world have expressed their keen interest
in this transaction, he added.

New data collection system on the anvil
Ikram Hoti

ISLAMABAD, Sept 22: A new economic data collection and analysis
system is being introduced to set realistic growth and funds
allocation targets.

Sources in the ministry of commerce told Dawn that the existing
data-gathering system operative between the Federal Bureau of
Statistics and the economic related organizations of the government
is being scrapped.

The new system for weekly, monthly, quarterly, half-yearly and
yearly pool of figures on major sectors is to be based on a
computerized linking of the economic-related organizations and the

 The project for realizing this connectivity is being launched by
Pakistan Revenue Automation Limited (PRAL).

The scope of data gathering is also being expanded from the present
30 economic sub-sectors on the supply and manufacture, market
trends and agriculture areas to the new sub-sectors which would be
identified in the process of determining the future capacity of
FBS's data collection.

The PRAL is planning to connect this system also to NADRA, to help
consolidate an Economic Census Wing which is meant to assist in the
future economic projections on growth, spending, revenues and

Connectivity of FBS with the economic-related organizations would
be the first step in this direction, which is presently under way.
The PRAL officials have already launched a coordination programme
with the FBS authorities which is meant to ensure the following:
identification of the weakest data gathering areas; determining the
requirement of the FBS in getting connected downstream; and
initiation of a training programme to achieve this connectivity.

A software will be developed by January next which will ensure that
the capacity of data pool and conducting analysis in specified
periods is achieved. The import and export related data will be
drawn through this system directly from the computerized input of
the Customs Houses throughout the country.

A project of connecting the Customs Houses with each other and the
Central Board of Revenue is already under way. This project was
started last year by PRAL, and presently it is taking up the
computerization work at the MI Yard of Karachi. This project is
also expected to be completed simultaneously with the FBS-
connectivity project.

The manufacturing sector data would be lifted from the ministry of
commerce and Export Promotion Bureau systems which are being
installed by the end of this year. An agricultural census
transmission capacity is being created to connect it with the FBS
system for this purpose.

The data transmission through the present system of dispatch will
be scrapped on achieving this capacity, while the staff presently
operating to serve the pool at FBS will be retrained to help run
the new system.

Once this system is in place, sources added that the connectivity
would also be guaranteed to the crucial monitoring organs of the
government like AGPR and Auditor General of Pakistan, for the
purpose of conducting instant reconciliation of figures provided by
the finance-related departments. A window for private sector data
users would also be created to provide them the data against
payment of stipulated fee.

Back to the top
Gen Agha Mohammad Yahya Khan - 4
Ardeshir Cowasjee

THIS newspaper of record did us a great service by publishing the
full text of the 1974 Supplementary Report of the Hamoodur Rahman
Commission the day after it was released in the Indian press. We
subsequently read that our government intended to publish the 1972
Main Report of the HR Commission, but this was swiftly denied. End
of story.

There were three men principally responsible for the loss, at the
end of 1971, of half of Jinnah's Pakistan. Firstly, Yahya Khan,
head of state, head of government, chief martial law administrator,
C-in-C of the army and supreme commander of the armed forces, who
was held in captivity by his successor, Zulfikar Ali Bhutto, denied
an open trial, freed by Zia-ul-Haq, and died a sick and lonely man.
Secondly, Zulfikar Ali Bhutto, who commissioned and then suppressed
the Hamoodur Rahman Commission Report, and was deposed, tried, and
hanged by his successor, Zia-ul-Haq. Thirdly, Mujibur Rahman, first
prime minister of Bangladesh, assassinated by some rebel troops of
his own army.

This month's issue of 'Newsline' has devoted pages to the HR Report
and to the loss of East Pakistan. One article, 'A nation's shame',
quotes from the statement made by that fine officer and gentleman,
Admiral Syed Mohammed Ahsan. The general who surrendered to the
Indians, A.A.K. Niazi, has been interviewed. And Brigadier F.B. Ali
in his article, 'Conduct unbecoming' has written on the subsequent
revolt during the Bhutto regime by a number of army officers, of
which he was one.

*From 'A nation's shame':

"But who was responsible for creating this hostile atmosphere and
hatred among the people? The situation deteriorated further after
General Yahya Khan postponed the first session of the newly elected
constituent assembly. It became very clear immediately after the
election results that the generals were not prepared to transfer
power to the Awami League. First the delay in summoning the
National Assembly session and later its postponement confirmed the
Bengalis' worst fears, that the election results were not
acceptable both to the generals and to the majority of West
Pakistani politicians. Zulfikar Ali Bhutto publicly called for a
boycott of the assembly session. Such a transgression was bound to
further fuel public resentment.

"The anti-Bengali bias of the military leadership was very obvious.
There was no representation from East Pakistan in the decision-
making forums. In his statement before the Commission, Admiral
Ahsan, the former governor of East Pakistan, aptly described the
hostile mood of the military leadership when they decided to
postpone the assembly session and launch a military operation in
the eastern province. 'On arrival in Rawalpindi I was alarmed to
notice the high tide of militarism flowing turbulently.... There
was open talk of a military solution according to plan ',
maintained Admiral Ahsan. 'I was caught quite unaware in this
atmosphere for I know of no military solution which could possibly
solve whatever crisis was supposed to be impending in the minds of
the authorities.'

"It was evident from the statement that the decision to launch a
military operation was taken without consulting the governor of
East Pakistan who was the only sane voice in the government. Ahsan
went on to describe the atmosphere at a crucial high-level meeting
in Rawalpindi on February 22 1971.

" 'The president presided over the meeting of the governors and
martial law administrators attended as usual by the military and
the civilian officers of the intelligence agencies. It is relevant
to record that among the tribe of governors and MLAs I was the only
non-army governor and the only retired officer in the midst of
active service men. I was the only person, though a non-Bengali,
who had to represent the sentiments of seventy million Bengalis to
a completely West Pakistani generalship,' said Admiral Ahsan.
'During the past 17 months, in meetings and conferences, my brief
ran counter to the cut-and-dried solutions of West Pakistan
representatives and civil servants. The president invariably gave
decisions which accommodated East Pakistan's viewpoint, at least
partially. This made me unpopular with my colleagues who probably
thought I was 'difficult' at best and 'sold' to the Bengalis at

*From the Niazi interview:

"Q. The Hamood Commission recommended that a coterie of generals -
General Yahya Khan, General Abdul Hamid Khan, Lt General S.G.M.M.
Pirzada, Lt General Gul Hasan, Major General Umar and Major General
Mitha - be publicly tried for the 1971 debacle. However, General
Tikka, Sahibzada Yakub Ali Khan and Rao Farman Ali have simply been
exonerated. How would you respond? Do you think they were innocent?

"A. I don't agree with the Commission's exoneration of these three.
It is surprising that no responsibility for the break-up of
Pakistan has been apportioned on Tikka, Yaqub and Farman. In fact,
Yaqub's inaction as Commander of the Eastern Command aggravated the
situation in East Pakistan. Having messed up everything, Yaqub
deemed it fit to desert his post and resign, while taking cover
behind his conscience. I think he should have been sent to the
gallows for betraying the nation. Yahya demoted him. However,
Bhutto restored his rank and sent him as ambassador to the USA.
What a prize for desertion! The Hamood Commission exculpated him,
thus paving the ground for officers to resign instead of fighting
the enemy whenever a difficult situation develops. Similarly, Tikka
has not been mentioned in the Hamood report, although his barbaric
action of March 25 earned him the name of the 'Butcher of Bengal'.
The Commission has overlooked his heinous crimes. For his failure
to disarm the East Pakistan Rifles and arrest the military
brainpower, Tikka was removed from the command of Eastern Command.
His expulsion of journalists from East Pakistan was a naive step
that turned the international press against Pakistan. Tikka's
biggest fault was his inability to launch a counter-offensive from
the Western Theatre, which ultimately cost us the war.

"As far as Rao Farman is concerned, he was in charge of the Dhaka
operations. According to authentic press reports, tanks, mortars
and artillery were ruthlessly employed against the Dhaka University
inmates, killing scores of them. Rao remained military adviser to
five governors and had his finger in every pie."

*From 'Conduct unbecoming':

"Matters had not gone beyond the serious discussion stage when a
traitor in our midst, Lt Colonel Tariq Rafi, betrayed us to the
generals. Early in 1973, a large number of army and air force
officers were arrested in a particularly brutal fashion, confined
under very harsh conditions, and tried by court martials in Attock
and Badaber. Bhutto saw this as an excellent opportunity to teach a
lasting lesson to anyone else in the armed forces who might think
of acting against him.

"In spite of a superb defence led by Mr Manzur Qadir, the outcome
was a foregone conclusion: all the accused were convicted and many
of them were given long prison sentences, including life
imprisonment for Aleem Afridi and me. Manzur Qadir was ill but
continued to defend us, even though we could barely pay enough to
cover his expenses (his normal fees were totally beyond our means),
and lived for long periods in primitive conditions in the Attock
rest house, as did his colleagues, Ijaz Hussain Batalvi, Aitzaz
Ahsan and Wasim Sajjad.

"The emotions that drove these young officers to contemplate such a
drastic step, involving grave risks, and then to stoically suffer
such harsh consequences, were poignantly expressed by Major Saeed
Akhtar Malik in his address to the Attock court martial trying him
for his life. He said: 'When the war became imminent, I took leave
from the PMA and joined my unit, ... thanks to the CO who
requisitioned my services. The next day the war started. But
instead of glory I found only disillusionment. The truth was that
we were a defeated army even before a shot was fired. This was a
very bitter truth. With each corpse that I saw, my revulsion
increased for the men who had signed the death warrants of so many
very fine men. Yes, fine men, but poor soldiers, who were never
given the chance to fight back, because they were not trained to
fight back. When they should have been training for war, they were
performing the role of labourers, farmers or herdsmen, anything but
the role of soldiers. This was not 'shahadat'. This was cold-
blooded murder. Who was responsible for this? I was responsible !
But more than me were responsible. What were some of these men,
these callous, inhuman degenerates, doing when their only job was
to prepare the army for war? Were these men not grabbing lands and
building houses? Did it not appear in foreign magazines that some
of them were pimping for their bloated grandmaster? Yes, generals,
wearing that uniform (he pointed at the court's president) pimping
and whoremongering!' "

Having lost what we had, today we are trying to acquire territory
we never had. Our sole ally is the destroyed and dying Talebanized
Afghanistan. The weapons with which we threaten the world are the
nuclear bombs combined with obscurantism. End of story?
National Bolshevism & the higher mathematics
Ayaz Amir

IT is not as if there is anything wrong with Pakistan. Perish the
thought. It is just that the national mathematics do not add up.
That we are living beyond our means and earn not enough even for
everyday needs is a clich become hoary with over-use.

The stage has arrived where our IOUs are being called and we do not
know what to do except plead before the IMF for another round of
aspirin. Six hundred million dollars - a sum Bill Gates could eat
for breakfast - is what the Islamic Ummah's only nuclear power is
begging for. And ready to do anything to get it.

National agenda? Say that again. Since the October coup (all right,
counter-coup) the only agenda in town has been fulfilling the IMF's
conditions - GST, documentation, tax survey, the free-fall of the
rupee - no matter if the economy slips further into recession and
people howl louder about the impact of high prices and blame the
army for all their troubles.

Who knows what is really going on? Not the Jabbars and Haiders or
the civil society gurus running around like headless chickens. Not,
I wager, the corps commanders who with set jaw go about their
municipal and provincial duties: transfers and postings, road
inspections, desultory talks with traders when the sputtering tax
survey runs up against another brick wall. Unless he is dumber than
we think, the person in the know should be the de facto prime
minister, Shaukat Aziz. Isn't he orchestrating the national tap-
dance before the IMF? But no matter. When the obituary of these
times is written (the history of Pakistan being more a matter of
writing obituaries than anything else) he will be safely out of the
way, supping with the ghosts of finance ministers past, even as the
Republic, unbreakable begging bowl in hand, sinks further into

Stop, I can hear the cry from afar. We know all this. What point in
driving the obvious home? Tell us your remedies. Well, here goes.
The present course is unsustainable. We simply do not have the
export or manufacturing capacity to get the economy moving so as to
be in a position to pay off our burgeoning debt. Living from one
rescheduling to another: this is all we are doing, in the process
getting more indebted and seeing a greater flight of human and
other capital abroad. This has to stop. We must turn our backs on
the past and undertake a search for new solutions.

But at this point a caveat looms. The army is a great and glorious
institution, perhaps the last line of defence against creeping
disorder and anarchy. But let us get one thing into our mutts: it
is also a conservative institution, as armies all over the world
are, no more capable of dreaming up radical solutions to Pakistan's
economic woes than the Rotary Club or the English-Speaking Union.
When swept by self-righteousness it declares it is going to turn
the ship of state around, it is guilty of fooling itself and of
trying to fool the nation. These are games for which there is scope
in normal times but not when the direction of the country (or
indeed its future) is at stake.

I have no idea of what or who can replace the army at this
juncture. The list of all our would-be saviours makes for
depressing reading. But along with a good many of my countrymen I
know one thing for sure that the army should not wait around too
long in power. It must return to its own duties and leave the
nation's affairs to a civilian set-up, call it a national
government, made up of the best this country has to offer
(although, Heaven knows, even the best that we have can be pretty
depressing). Let the superior wisdom that the army claims to have
be put at the service of such a government.

Now back to the what-is-to-be-done tale. The time may have come to
look seriously at the benefits of a default. Between now and
January 2001 lines of communication with the IMF should be frozen.
While talking politely to it nothing should be accepted. And then,
summoning up our last reserves of courage, it should be told we
have no need for a bailout package - 600 million dollars or even
more. Will anyone, please, tell me in plain English what we will
lose? In what way will our position be worse than it is today? That
the dollar will hit the roof? It is pretty near the ceiling
already. That our exports will dry up? Big deal. What exports are
we talking about? That we will be able to import nothing? In the
words of Eliza Doolittle, wouldn't that be lovely? That our
manufacturing industry will come to a standstill. What in our
manufacturing industry is worth saving?

Business as usual will drive us further into the pits. The Republic
needs a wake-up call which it will only get when something drastic,
like a default, happens. And a default, by the way, without the
chest-thumping rhetoric at which we so excel.

But...and this is an all-important but... we will be in no position
to carry off this gambit as long as we remain over-extended as a
nation. We are carrying too much delusional baggage around:
meddling in Afghanistan when we cannot manage our own affairs,
liberating Kashmir by force when we have lost half the country at
the altar of our unmitigated stupidity, setting off our nuclear
fire-crackers when any dim-wit could have told us we would be far
better off leaving them in the closet, and making an asinine issue
of the CTBT as if signing it would mean the loss of national
virginity. We have to draw our fingers in, call back our armies
home and take a hard look at what is possible and what is not
before being able to part-defy the international community
regarding our foreign debt.

In other words, we have to perform a double-act: engage the
international community by giving up on our Soviet ambitions (there
being everything Soviet about our overstretched external lines) and
show a hard face to our international creditors. We cannot be tough
(and stupid) on both counts: spurn our creditors and be Talibanish
at the same time. That won't work. Recklessness at one end must be
balanced by responsibility at the other.

Our present posture is just the reverse. Proud Bolsheviks on
Afghanistan, Kashmir and the CTBT; abject slaves before the IMF.
The day this equation is reversed will mean the fruition of the
Pakistani revolution. And, no, I don't mean we give up on our
stand, principled or whatever, on Kashmir. We just learn to be a
bit more sensible. Japan has not given up on its demand for the
return of the four Northern Islands taken by Russia in the last
days of the Second World War. But neither has it set up training
camps on the mainland to recapture them. While pressing for their
return it carries on normal dealings with Russia. This should not
be such a hard act for us to follow.

But who will reset our national order of priorities? I wish I knew
the answer to this one.

It's OK to say sorry
Irfan Husain

AT the Liberation War Museum in Dhaka last week, thirty-year old
press cuttings and photographs of slaughter and mayhem brought back
a flood of depressing memories.

Ever since the Hamoodur Rahman Commission's supplementary report
emerged a few weeks ago, our newspapers have been full of articles
and letters about it. Retired generals and their supporters have
defended themselves, and respected columnists have written of
length about the report. The focus of the debate has so far been
largely on the conduct (or misconduct) of the 1971 war, the timing
of the appearance of the secret document, the guilt or innocence of
those directly involved in the operations, and the political
dimension of the conflict.

The controversy was given a new twist by General Musharraf's recent
refusal to meet the Bangladesh prime minister in New York. At a
press conference, he urged her to "forget the past" and move on.
This did not go down very well in Bangladesh where many people at
the conference I had gone to read a paper at wanted to know why our
Chief Executive was so touchy about Sheikh Hasina's proposal that
the UN should oppose and punish those who toppled elected
governments. After all, her father and much of her family were
murdered by elements of the Bangladesh army, so her vehemence and
bitterness are understandable. Far from targeting General
Musharraf, she was sending out a signal to her own generals to stay
in the barracks. Indeed, she has often condemned military takeovers
in public speeches in her country.

But in all this plethora of opinions, arguments and counter-
arguments, it is difficult to discern any remorse or regret over
the horrors inflicted on hundreds of thousands of men, women and
children in the name of Pakistan. Nor have we expressed any
sympathy for the families of those who were raped, wounded and
killed. We have been far more concerned about the humiliation
suffered by the Pakistan army and the dereliction of duty by senior
officers identified in the HRC report. The heated controversy in
the press is largely over whether the generals blamed by the
Commission for misdemeanours ranging from cowardice to smuggling to
sexual abuse should be tried or not. Not much has been said or
written about those who were the targets of these excesses.

Another irony in this ongoing debate is that many army officers and
civilians have put the whole blame for the tragedy on Zulfikar Ali
Bhutto, arguing that he had persuaded General Yahya to launch his
suicidal adventure in March 1971. The second point this lobby makes
is that the terms of reference given to the Commission after Bhutto
assumed power were limited to only the military causes of the
defeat, omitting the political reasons.

These people disingenuously overlook the fact that the generals
were then in power and had their own agenda: they took advice from
politicians only to the extent that it suited them. If they took
bad advice, this surely does not excuse them or lessen their guilt
in any way. Also, even if Bhutto somehow worked his magic on
Yahya's junta, he was not commanding the troops, nor did he
organize the bloodbath that was universally seen as genocide. I
hold no brief for the late prime minister, but the fact remains
that he paid a price for his real and alleged crimes that no
politician or general in Pakistan has paid before or since.

Incidentally, I would like to put at rest a canard that has been
doing the rounds in the columns of the national press, and that is
that Bhutto had destroyed or doctored the HRC report. The main
report is a bulky document in six or seven volumes containing the
testimony of the civilian and military officers before the
Commission, as well as many documents that were placed before it. I
was a young deputy secretary in the prime minister's secretariat in
the latter part of Bhutto's tenure, and my late (and much missed)
boss Hamid Jalal was one of the handful of people who were given
sets of the HRC report to study and advise the PM. Although he kept
the document under lock and key and did not let me even peek at it,
he did tell me that he was one of those who advised against
releasing it as he felt the report would further demoralize our
defeated army, apart from affecting our ties with some friendly
countries. I disagreed with him then as I do now because I feel the
truth may hurt initially, but is beneficial in the long run. Be
that as it may, I can confirm that Hamid Jalal's set of the HRC
report was recalled several weeks after Zia's coup.

Had Bengali troops carried out a similar carnage in West Pakistan,
I wonder how many of us would have been prepared to "forgive and
forget" as General Musharraf has advised the Bangladesh prime
minister to do? I would like to remind him that crimes against
humanity are not subject to any statute of limitation. To this day,
octogenarians are tried when they are caught for their part in the
Nazi horror. Pol Pot and his murderous Khmer Rouge were held
accountable for their part in creating the killing fields of
Cambodia. The South Africans established a Truth and Reconciliation
Commission to probe the crimes against blacks committed under
apartheid. The Japanese have apologized (though not very profusely)
to the Koreans and the Chinese for their invasion of these nations,
and the crimes committed by the Imperial Japanese Army.

I know this is not a very popular view in Pakistan, but ever since
stories of the horrors perpetrated against Bengalis began filtering
out thirty years ago, I have felt anguish and guilt. Many of us who
were old enough in those traumatic days chose to ascribe the
reports of mass killings, widespread rape and destruction to Indian
and western propaganda. Largely, people clung to this view because
they did not want to believe that our army could be capable of such
actions. But ex-colleagues returning from what was then East
Pakistan confirmed that a bloodbath was indeed going on.

In an attempt to reduce our responsibility in the whole tragic
affair, many people admit that our army did commit some excesses,
but maintain that it was provoked by the torture and killings
carried out by the Mukti Bahini against West Pakistani civilians.
The HRC report has also mentioned this, thus partly condoning army
action. I have always been of the view that the army is a trained
and disciplined force, whereas armed civilian groups like the Mukti
Bahini (or indeed the MQM) have neither the discipline and the
firepower, nor the moral authority to be equated with the military.
Criminal action by armed groups cannot and should not be used as a
pretext for over-reaction by the legally constituted armed forces.

On my brief visit to Dhaka last week, I was struck by how fresh the
scars of 1971 still are. People were bitter and angry over the
refusal of successive governments in Pakistan to even discuss the
possibility of trying army officers for the alleged crimes
committed against the Bengalis three decades ago. Even the
equitable division of assets is not open to negotiations by
Pakistan. When we are in this constant state of denial, it is
difficult to bring up the subject of national guilt or indeed have
a rational debate on this painful subject.

But we can only put the past behind us by bringing out the
skeletons from the cupboards where they have been stacked all these
years. Simply putting the blame on Bhutto and/or the Bengalis is to
refuse to accept and understand what really happened. People like
General 'Tiger' Niazi have demanded a court martial to clear their
names. These offers should be immediately accepted and an open
trial under military law should be started as recommended by the

Even before this, we can make a new beginning in our relations with
Bangladesh by saying we are sorry for what happened.

Pakistan and Germany draw 1-1 in crucial tie

SYDNEY, Sept 21: Germany snatched a valuable point in the Olympic
men's hockey by forcing Pakistan to a 1-1 draw in Group A here on

Both goals came in the first half as Oliver Domke's 19th minute
goal was equalised by Pakistani penalty corner ace Sohail Abbas
five minutes before the interval.

It was the first of only two penalty corners Pakistan earned in the
match, denying more scoring opportunities to Sohail, who scored a
hat trick in his team's record 8-1 win over Great Britain on

The draw left both Germany and reigning champions the Netherlands
on seven points from three matches, two more than Pakistan.

With the final two rounds of matches remaining, the race is wide
open to take the two semi-final berths from the group.

The Dutch play Pakistan and Germany in their last games. The
Germans also have Britain to contend with, while Pakistan play
Malaysia next on Saturday.-AFP

Pakistan thrash Great Britain 8-1 in breathtaking display
Zawwar Hasan

SYDNEY, Sept 18: Having faltered in their opening match against
Canada, Pakistan desperately needed a dose of self-belief to stay
in the medal race for Olympic hocky. They got a massive dose on
Monday at the cost of Great Britain whom they blasted 8-1.

If the match against Canada on Saturday was a nightmare, Monday's
was a dream come true. On a warm, bright afternoon with Pakistan
flags fluttering in Sydney Hockey Centre's packed stands, eleven
angry men in green shirts seemed to do everything right.

What torrid moments the hapless Britons went through for 70
agonising minutes will scar their memory forever. Never before in
their hundred years of Olympic campaign had they received such a
drubbing at the hands of any opponent.

Asked at the post-match press conference one of the British players
Mark Pearn told newsmen: "They took their chances on the
corners.... We didn't. They put pretty much absolutely everything
and deserved to win."

There was a reason for Pakistan to go into the encounter with all
cylinders firing. They had to send the message out that the drawn
match with Canada was just an aberration and that the best is yet
to come. But will they in fact back up the message with their
future performance?

Only the future can answer this 64-million dollar question. Except
Pakistan, none of the top-ranking team carries nine players who
have never played in the Olympics. And no team has suffered so much
stress and strain as the Pakistan team has. Between Atlanta and
Sydney the turn over at the top has been tremendous. Without doubt
instability trickles down and takes its own toll. This should now
end if Pakistan hockey is to regain its place under the sun.

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