Sunday, December 30, 2018

Video - Whole new world: Then and now, the upheaval of 1919

Video Report - #Saudi king demotes Foreign Minister Adel al-Jubeir

Video - Egg-splosive: Spanish town erupts into food & firework fight

Video Report - Why are #Sudan's protests gaining momentum?

Video Report - CNN Fareed Zakaria Special 12/30/2018 | CNN BREAKING NEWS Today Dec 30, 2018

Ghazal - Thodi Thodi Piya Karo by Pankaj Udhas -

#Bangladesh Prime Minister Wins 3rd Term Amid Deadly Violence on Election Day

Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina’s ruling party won Bangladesh’s election with a large majority, the country’s Election Commission said early on Monday, giving Mrs. Hasina a third straight term following a vote that the opposition rejected as flawed.
At least 17 people were killed in Bangladesh in election-related violence on Sunday, according to the police, as voters went to the polls to decide an election tainted by widespread allegations of rigging by the government.
The win by Mrs. Hasina’s Awami League, which was reported by the secretary of the Election Commission Secretariat in a televised speech, would consolidate her decade-long rule over Bangladesh. Mrs. Hasina is credited with improving the economy and promoting development, but has also been accused of rampant human rights abuses, a crackdown on the news media and suppressing dissent — charges she denies.
The head of the opposition coalition, Kamal Hossain, said the alliance had asked the Election Commission to order a fresh vote under a neutral administration “as soon as possible,” alleging Sunday’s poll was unfair and that Mrs. Hasina’s government never granted her opponents a level playing field.
“The whole election was completely manipulated. It should be canceled,” Mr. Hossain, 82, said in an interview at his residence in the capital, Dhaka, late Sunday. Candidates of the alliance reported seeing ballot-stuffing and vote-rigging by ruling party activists, who also barred opposition polling agents from voting centers, Mr. Hossain said.
“We’ve had bad elections in the past, but I must say that it is unprecedented how bad this particular election was,” he said. “The minimum requirements of free and fair election are absent.”
The Awami League won 287 of the 298 seats for which results have been declared in the 300-seat Parliament, the Election Commission said. The main opposition, the Bangladesh Nationalist Party, which boycotted the last poll in 2014, won just six seats.
The commission said it had received allegations of vote-rigging from “across the country,” which it was investigating. A spokesman at the agency declined to say whether those investigations would affect the election result.

Bangladeshi polling officials emptying ballot boxes for counting on Sunday.CreditAnupam Nath/Associated Press

Bangladeshi polling officials emptying ballot boxes for counting on Sunday.CreditAnupam Nath/Associated Press
The commission said it would hold a new vote for one seat where the poll was marred by violence. Another constituency, where a candidate died days before the election, will also go to the polls in the next few days.Jahangir Kabir Nanak, the joint secretary of the Awami League, said the opposition had been “rejected by the people of Bangladesh” and that its refusal to accept voting results was “not unusual.”  
“It is their old habit,” he said referring to the B.N.P., which has alternated in power with the Awami League for most of the last three decades. “We thought they would welcome this election for a change. But they could not change their habit,” he said.
Scores of opposition workers were arrested in the months before the election on charges that the opposition called “fictitious,” and many said they were attacked by ruling party activists, crippling their ability to campaign.“The election is a cruel mockery with the nation. This type of election is harmful to the nation,” said the B.N.P.’s secretary general, Mirza Fakhrul Islam Alamgir.Mrs. Hasina’s government has denied the accusations and her party has claimed many of its own workers were injured in attacks by members of the opposition.
Polling booths across the country were sparsely attended, and some voters alleged that ruling party workers had blocked them from entering booths, saying their ballots had already been cast. Campaign posters of the ruling party dominated streets in many parts of Dhaka.
This was the first election the B.N.P. had campaigned without its leader, Khaleda Zia. She and Mrs. Hasina have alternated in power for most of the last three decades, but Mrs. Zia has been in jail since February on corruption charges, which she has called politically motivated.
Mr. Hossain said he would meet with alliance members on Monday to decide the next step. B.N.P.’s demand this year for polls to be held under a neutral government was rejected by Mrs. Hasina, who promised a “free and fair election.”

#Pakistan - #PPP - Your govt’s days are numbered, Bilawal tells PM

Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP) Chairman Bilawal Bhutto on Sunday responded to the prime minister’s “hue and cry” remark by saying that it is the cries of the poor which will topple the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI)-led government.

PM Imran Khan on Friday had said that “since yesterday have been hearing hue and cry from Sindh,” in an apparent jibe aimedat the PPP whose leaders are facing an inquiry in relation to fake accounts.

Bilawal, taking to Twitter, said that indeed Sindh is raising the hue and cry but that these complains are a result of gas loadshedding in Sindh, which “produces the most gas”, as well as blocking of water to the province.
“Sindh is complaining because agriculture and industries are being destroyed,” he said.
PM says will launch biggest operation against money laundering in history
He then went on to threaten the PTI that these complaints are quickly snowballing into a “huge roar” which would eventually topple the government.
The two parties came face to face after the PTI started hinting at a leadership change in the provincial government following Chief Minister Murad Ali Shah and PPP Co-chairman Asif Zardari’s inclusion in the Exit Control List on Friday. The PPP slammed the ECL move and has warned against toppling its government in Sindh.

#Pakistan- بلاول کا سخت ردعمل آگیا

پیپلز پارٹی کے چیئر مین بلاول زرداری نےکہا کہ سندھ سے چیخیں نہیں 
دھاڑیں آرہی ہیں ،اور یہ دھاڑیں آپ کی حکومت گرادیں گی ۔
وزیراعظم کے سندھ سے چیخیں آنے کے بیان پرسخت ردعمل کا اظہار کرتے ہوئے بلاول زرداری نے کہا سندھ سےچیخیں آرہی ہیں کہ سب سےزیادہ گیس پیداکرنیوالےصوبے کوگیس نہیں دی جارہی، پانی نہیں دیا جارہاہے۔
چیئرمین پی پی نے کہا کہ پورے پاکستان سے چیخیں آرہی ہیں کہ بجلی مہنگی، گیس مہنگی، پٹرول مہنگاہے۔
انہوں نے کہا کہ سندھ کی یہ چیخیں اب دھاڑ میں بدل رہی ہیں اور یہ دھاڑ آپکی 
حکومت گرادے گی۔

@fawadchaudhry - فواد چوہدری پر رانا ثنا کا الزام، حامد خان کی تصدیق

تحریک انصاف کے سینئر رہنما حامد خان نے رانا ثنا اللہ کے وفاقی وزیر اطلاعات فواد چوہدری پر لگائے گئے الزامات کی تصدیق کردی۔
حامد خان نے کہا کہ میں نے 2015ء میں شائع ہونے والی کتاب میں جسٹس افتخار حسین کے جس بھتیجے کا ذکر کیا وہ فواد چوہدری ہی تھے ۔
گزشتہ دونوں رانا ثنا اللہ نے کہا تھاکہ جب فواد چوہدری کے چچا چیف جسٹس لاہور ہائیکورٹ تھے وہ لوگوں سے پیسے لے کر فیصلے کراتے تھے۔

Pashto Music - Zargiya Chop Sha | Salma Shaheen | Sardar Ali Takkar | زړګيه، چوپ شه | سلما شاهين | سردارعلي ټکر

#Pakistan - #Punjab’s #HIV problems

HIV has reached the level of concentrated epidemic in Pakistan. The under- reported health hazard calls for mass level awareness campaigns to promote a caring behavior towards its carriers.
HIV (Human Immunodeficiency Virus) incidence in Pakistan has reached the level of concentrated epidemic from high-risk groups since 2004. By UNAIDS’ estimate, Pakistan has approximately 170,000 HIV patients.
Concentrated epidemic means HIV prevalence is consistently over 5 percent in Pakistan and it has spread rapidly in one or more defined subpopulation but is not well established in the general population.
The Ministry of National Health Services submitted a report before the Supreme Court bench in August 2018 that Pakistan has an estimated 150,000 HIV patients of which approximately 75,000 are in Punjab, 60,000 in Sindh and around 15,000 of people living with HIV (PLHIV) are based in KP and Balochistan. However, the total number of registered HIV/AIDS patients since 1992 is 22,000 across the country.
The number of new HIV patients is increasing by 20,000 a year. Nevertheless, Supreme Court dismissed the report and asked Ministry of National Health Services to file a comprehensive and well-researched report with accurate data.
The World Bank which is the largest financer of HIV/AIDS programme in Pakistan indicates serious risk factors that put Pakistan in danger of facing a rapid spread of HIV if immediate and vigorous action was not taken.
Several factors, including low literacy, high poverty, and unsafe blood transfusion have made Pakistan more vulnerable to HIV spread. Additionally, extramarital affairs, sexual intercourse with sex workers, particularly male and transgender persons, injection of drugs and same-sex relationships are possible reasons for spread of HIV/AIDS in Pakistan.
UNAIDS’ 2017 estimates show that approximately there are 228,787 female sex workers in Pakistan with 3.8 percent HIV prevalence; approximately 832,213 men had sex with men who have 3.7 percent HIV prevalence; 5.5 percent of 52 646 transgender people carry HIV.
The report published by UNODC (United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime) considers approximately 4.25 million people drug dependent. The Pakistan Field Epidemiology Training and Laboratory Training Programme (FELTP) investigated and found use of same syringe on multiple patients by quacks to be the source of infections.
A social worker and Director Programme and Operation Akhuwat, Dr. Izhar Ul Haq Hashmi expresses his discontentment on the policies governments have opted in the past to counter HIV epidemic in the country. “HIV is equally or more dangerous than Polio or Hepatitis B&C. Certainly, no country can fight a silent killer like HIV with bad strategies and methods.
“It’s unfortunate that the departments established to cater to HIV patients and issues linked to this disease have done little in the last couple of years except for organising few seminars or walks annually. We need serious efforts to tackle the probable threat this concentrated epidemic poses to the general public.”
The stigma keeps HIV positive individuals from disclosing their status and they are unable to receive treatment from healthcare providers.
Spokesperson Punjab Aids Control Programme Sajjad Hafeez has a different perspective and disagrees with the phenomenon of increasing HIV patients in the country. “Numerics presented by the World Bank and UNAIDS do not reflect the actual picture. According to the World Bank the prevalence should be less than 0.1percent of the population but we have 0.03percent.
“Apart from providing treatment in established centres across the province, two types of awareness campaigns are being run consistently; advertisements and campaigns on mass media through advertisements, and interpersonal counseling programmes with targeted groups. These efforts are indeed helping to bring the number of HIV patients down in the province.”
According to a government report, certain parts of Punjab, including Lahore, Dera Ghazi Khan, Multan, Rawalpindi, Gujrat, Faisalabad and Sargodha are among the vulnerable areas.
Dr. Sikandar Warraich works in District Headquarter Hospital Sargodha and treats HIV patients in the district. He expresses serious concerns over the claims Sajjad Hafeez makes. “Number of HIV patients is undoubtedly on the rise in the district but there are only two centres — insufficient to treat patients. In addition, not a single dialysis machine is available for HIV patients — many have died waiting for treatment.
“Majority of HIV-infected persons are unaware about their own disease. They are not getting any treatment or taking precautionary measures that can avoid the spread of the disease.”
World Health Organisation (WHO) points out blood transfusion as another source of spread of HIV in Pakistan. It is estimated that 40 percent of the 1.5 million annual blood transfusions are not screened for HIV. About 20 percent of the blood transfused comes from professional donors.
Faisalabad-based Dr Arshad Bashir believes that not all private blood banks screen blood for HIV. “These private blood banks do not screen blood for HIV and Hepatitis just to save money which is a serious crime.”
“Moreover, concerned authorities pay little attention to practices at the dialyses and thalassemia centres where blood recipients and those undergoing dialysis are at huge risk of contracting HIV. Precautionary measures must be ensured in these centres,” Dr Bashir stresses.
Widespread use of one syringe for more than one patient at clinics has also put a large number of population at risk of contracting HIV. Pakistan has a high rate of medical injections, around 4.5 per capita per year. “94 percent of injections are administered with used syringes.”
According to WHO estimates, unsafe injections account for 62 percent of Hepatitis B, 84 percent of Hepatitis C, and 3 percent of new HIV cases.
Constant vigilance of the dynamics of HIV prevalence is important in estimating, regulating, and implementing prevention programmes. “Unfortunately, there is no mechanism available in Pakistan to ascertain the number of HIV patients. Therefore, the claim Sajjad Hafeez makes regarding decreasing number of HIV patients is unrealistic,” says Dr Sikandar Warraich.
At least 54 NGOs are believed to be involved in creating awareness of HIV/AIDS in the public and also, how to care for and support persons living with HIV/AIDS. These NGOs serve as members of the Provincial HIV/AIDS Consortium, which has been established in all four provinces to coordinate HIV/AIDS prevention and control activities.
These NGOs are reaching out to less than 15 percent of the vulnerable population. People in the rural areas of Pakistan are mostly uneducated which is one of the possible reasons for HIV spread. There is hardly an example of being effective at grassroots level to promote preventive measures or create mass awareness regarding the stigma prevailing in the society towards HIV patients.
This stigma keeps HIV positive individuals from disclosing their status and they are unable to receive treatment from healthcare providers.
The Ministry of National Health Services also suggested in the report a bill on speedy treatment of HIV patients and the establishment of a framework to reduce stigma and discrimination. Based on the suggestion, the Supreme Court ordered to launch awareness campaign at once.
Dr Hashmi says there should be immediate mass level awareness campaigns focusing on promoting tolerant and caring behaviour towards people living with HIV. This will help in reducing social stigma; otherwise the under-reported groups have a potential to spread this to the general population.

#Pakistan - #Balochistan: Four including father and son abducted

Pakistani security forces have abducted four persons including a father and son from Balochistan’s district Awaran and Kech.
According to detail, the Pakistani state forces raided a house in Dasht are of district Kech on Saturday and abducted Abdul Salaam son of Mohammad Karim resident of Dasht Seji.
In other incidents, Pakistan FC and military forces have abducted Hussain son of Arzi on 24 December from Kahndri area of Mashky in Awaran Balochistan.
On 25 December, a father and his son were abducted from Nokjo area of Mashaky in Awaran Balochistan.

#Pakistan - #Balochistan - Poverty-hit area with hundreds out of school children, unnoticed disables

 By: Rafiullah Mandokhail
ZHOB: “In union council Tang Sar hundreds of children do not go to school besides dozens other unnoticed disable living in the extremely poor hilly area.”
This was reveled in a recent survey conducted by Balochistan Rural Support Program under its Brace program in the district.
Surrounded by dry mountains the union council Tang Sar of sensitive Murgha Kibzai area some 110km in the southeast of Zhob city, always remained backward and neglected.
The survey revels that the union council is a cluster of eleven villages and comprising around seven hundred households. Half of the population estimated over four hundred house holds fall under the poverty line in the first three bands of HHs poverty classification.
The survey shows that 56% people of the total population belong to lower calls in terms of poverty. That is why 1742 children out of total 2774 children (5-16 of age) in the union council do not go to school. Moreover 732 children have never ever attended the school, either due to poverty, strict tribal and cultural barriers or lack of awareness.
Although neither a non-governmental organization had ever approached the area nor an official had set foot in these villages, however BRSP’s social mobilization staff led by field unit-3 in-charge SSO Naqeebullah Babar stepped into the area for the first time and accessed the community members including religious scholars and notables to support their BRACE program. The staff members left no stone unturned to complete the Potential Control Persons (PSC) survey effectively.
Following the survey a workshop was also organized in the area that was attended by over one hundred community members, elected representatives, Ulema and poor disable persons in a large number.
Naqeebullah Babar said the European Union funded Balochistan Rural Development and Community Empowerment (BRACE) is a rural development program that would benefit 1.9 million people in 249 Union Councils of nine Balochistan districts including Zhob, he said.
“The program focuses on the empowerment of communities and enabling them to implement community-driven socioeconomic development interventions,” he added.
When contacted, Social Organizer Afzal Khan to shed light on the formation process of local organizations and role of community towards the program and its activities, while Planning Monitoring Evaluation and Research officer Abdul Rasheed termed the BRACE program very beneficial for the poverty-hit remote area and unprivileged community.  

The Barbaric Persecution of Ahmadi Muslims in #Pakistan

Ahmadiyyas are a tiny peaceful community of about 5 million in Pakistan,( which has a total population of over 200 million ) who have been treated barbarically by religious extremists since long, the way Jews were treated in Nazi Germany.
The whole world celebrated Human Rights Day on 10th December, and on this occasion the Pakistan Minister for human rights, Shireen Mazari, waxed eloquent in a hypocritical statement about how Pakistan is committed to upholding human rights, and she mentioned about how the Pakistan Govt was taking up the issue of human rights violation of Kashmiris and Muslims in Europe in international fora. But her hypocrisy was revealed when not a word did she say about the horrendous genocidal treatment of Ahmadiyyas in Pakistan. Are Ahmadiyyas not human beings ? And if they are, are they not entitled to human rights ?
I myself have repeatedly condemned atrocities on Kashmiris by Indian security forces, as I believe no one should be persecuted, and I have condemned lynching of Muslims in India by cow vigilantes, but what about the atrocities on Ahmadiyyas in Pakistan ?
Ahmadiyyas were declared non Muslims by a Constitutional Amendment in 1974 and  the tyrant Gen Zia who issued Ordinance XX in 1984 making it a crime for Ahmadiyyas to ‘pose’ as Muslims or call their place of worship a masjid or call the Ahmadiyyas to prayers by azaan. Ahmadiyyas were forbidden to recite Quranic verses or exchange Islamic greetings publicly or gather on Eid.
Persecution of Ahmadiyyas had started soon after creation of Pakistan. In the 1953 riots hundreds of Ahmadiyyas were massacred, and so also in 1974. But it picked up momentum under Gen Zia’s rule. There have been several massacres of Ahmadiyyas, e.g. in the attack in Lahore on their place of worship in 2010 in which about a hundred were killed. In fact murders of Ahmadiyyas ( often in a ghastly manner e.g. by stoning them to death ) has been an almost annual feature in Pakistan for decades, with the police being bystanders or even collaborators. They have been barbarically treated, their places of worship vandalised and burnt down , their children harassed, their students victimised, and they were humiliated in various ways e.g. by making them state in their passport application that Mirza Ghulam Ahmed, the founder of their sect, was an imposter and they were non Muslims.
And what was their ‘crime’ ? That they do not regard Prophet Muhammad as the last Prophet ( which mainstream Muslims believe ) while still calling themselves Muslims.
I am not going into the question whether Ahmadiyyas regard Prophet Muhammad as the last Prophet or not ( some regard Mirza Ghulam Ahmed as a Mahdi or redeemer, not a Prophet ) but assuming they do not, and assert that Mirza Ghulam Ahmed was indeed another Prophet, are they cutting off anyone’s head, are they chopping off anyone’s limbs ? Everyone should be free to believe what he/she wants. That is what Jinnah, who is regarded as the founder of Pakistan, said in his speech of 11th August 1947.
And why should Ahmadiyyas not have a right to call themselves Muslims or call their place of worship a masjid ? If they do so, are they cutting off anyone’s head, are they chopping off anyone’s limbs ? If other Muslims don’t like Ahmadiyyas they need not associate with them or go to the Ahmadiyyas place of worship, but why should they persecute Ahmadiyyas ? To my mind such persecution is goodagardi and barbarism.
The present Prime Minister of Pakistan Imran Khan, who poses to be liberal and modern, being educated in Oxford, shamelessly hobnobbed with religious bigots like the Tehreeke Labayat during his election campaign to get votes, and spoke against Ahmadiyyas. He gave a PTI ticket to that rascal Amir Liaquat who anchored a TV programme in which venom was spouted against Ahmadiyyas, resulting in killings of many of them. And soon after he was sworn in as Prime Minister an Ahmadiyya place of worship was burnt down. He also forced out of the Pakistan Economic Advisory Council Atif Mian, a world renowned economist of Princeton University only because he was an Ahmadiyya ( an act for which even his ex wife Jemima condemned him ).
Ahmadiyyas have played an outstanding role in Pakistan. The first President of the UN General Assembly, Zafrullah Khan was an Ahmadiyya, and so was Nobel Laureate Dr. Abdus Salam. But Abdus Salam’s grave was desecrated because it had Quranic verses written on it, as were many other graves of Ahmadiyyas.
In my opinion the United Nations must now intervene, as it did in Bosnia, to prevent a forthcoming Holocaust of Ahmadiyyas, as it happened to Jews in Nazi Germany.